Outlander Book Club: Lord John and the Brotherhood of the Blade Chapter 16 breakdown

Benedicta calls off the engagement in Lord John and the Brotherhood of the Blade Chapter 16. Here's our breakdown of the chapter.
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Lord John Grey learns that his mother has called off the engagement in Lord John and the Brotherhood of the Blade Chapter 16, but he doesn’t understand why. Sir George wants to get to the bottom of it, making it clear that he loves her.

This chapter is a necessary one. It finally brings up more about Gerald’s journal and the scandal surrounding his death. We also learn that Benedicta has birds who tell her things, so she knows exactly what happened to Lord John in the previous chapter.

Benedicta is looking out for her sons when it comes to calling off her engagement. She needs to share more about what’s going on, though.

Breaking down Lord John and the Brotherhood of the Blade Chapter 16

The chapter starts with Lord John receiving Sir George, only to find out that Benedicta has called off the engagement. She hasn’t explained why, but she does eventually come to tell George that she can’t marry him because of everything that is going on. She can’t pull him into the mess that is happening.

Benedicta has tried to hide her worry about receiving pages from her late husband’s journal. She also points out that she knows Lord John wasn’t run over by a carriage and knows all about Ms. Tomlinson, Newgate, and Tyburn. Although she admits that when she called off the engagement, it was because she believed the second attack on John had been malicious and not John’s own doing. So the breaking off of the engagement is his fault somehow.

Benedicta goes on to explain that after Gerald’s death, she received three proposals. All of the men who proposed were involved in the scandal, and Benedicta knew that they were looking out for themselves with this and weren’t actually interest in her. We learn that George is most definitely interested in Benedicta for who she is, and I love that for them!

George now understands why Benedicta would choose not to marry him. By her receiving the journal pages, it means the journal is likely somewhere out there. Right now, Benedicta has kept the names quiet, but when she marries George, she will be under his protection. This could mean she speaks out about the names Gerald suspected as being Jacobite traitors.

John comes up with a plan to keep everyone protected. Since Benedicta knows that the men are not in his or Hal’s regiment, they can look out for themselves for the next month until they head to Germany. Olivia isn’t threatened, so she can go stay with Minnie. Benedicta can go to the West Indies with Sir George to remain protected, so they can marry.

John tells Hal the plan the following day, and he finds out the names of two suitors: Captain Gilbert Rigby and Lord Creemore, who we know as George Longstreet who was betting against Hal in the book. Hal makes it clear that he will deal with Longstreet himself.

One thing Hal doesn’t believe is that Benedicta knows anything that would justify the recent attacks. She probably knows the name of someone prominent with Jacobite sympathies, but that wouldn’t explain everything else. Hal will tell John things but only when he needs to know.

While they talk, they are pulling out fortunes from the automation jar, which adds some humor. John gets a fortune that tells him “the one you love is closer than you think,” and of course, that leads to John thinking about Percy again to end the chapter.

Could the chapter be used in a TV show adaptation?

If this book was ever adapted into a series, this chapter would be needed. This is important to the overall plot. We would need to get the explanation of the journal entries and the threats being made toward the Grey family.

I’m still not convinced that the Tyburn scene would be included, though. There are ways to deal with that if a potential adaptation didn’t have time to include it. All we’d need is for Benedicta to believe that there is a second targeted attack against John for her to call off the engagement. This would allow for this whole chapter to play out.

We don’t even need a second attack. The pages of the journal show up could be enough for her to sit George and John down to explain everything. Then we’d get further explanations from Hal.

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