Outlander Book Club: A Breath of Snow and Ashes Chapter 31 breakdown

Outlander Season 5 -- Courtesy of Aimee Spinks, STARZ
Outlander Season 5 -- Courtesy of Aimee Spinks, STARZ /
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Outlander Season 5 — Courtesy of Aimee Spinks, STARZ /

Just the Outlander chapter

The chapter starts with Claire being restless. She doesn’t like the silence in the room, and that’s understandable. After trauma, being left with your own thoughts is hard. Every sound has you on edge.

She decides to go to the kitchen, which is where Young Ian and then Jamie find her. Jamie explains that he talked to Lionel Brown. Hodgepile and his men were the ones responsible for burning the houses. It had nothing to do with the Browns at first.

It was only when Hodgepile got to Aaron Beardsley’s old trading post that the Browns ended up involved. The people living there were killed, but the couple’s 11-year-old daughter was able to get to the Browns for help. That led to a Mexican Standoff.

Hodgepile and the Browns managed to break a deal. Jamie’s whisky shed became a target, but Lionel swears that he didn’t want Hodgepile to take Claire.

Claire points out that Lionel encouraged the men to kill Claire and was going to drown her himself. This seals Lionel’s fate. Jamie has to execute him for his involvement in the attack on Claire.

At the very end of the chapter, Jamie shares with Claire about the Indian women who are always waiting for him when he’s going to see Bird. That night he has a dream about Black Jack Randall. His own trauma still comes up now and then, and I like that we get to see it. It’s not that I like seeing anyone suffer, but I like that we get something that is very real. Trauma doesn’t just disappear, and sometimes the brain brings it up after we think we’ve dealt with it.