Outlander Book Club: Lord John and the Private Matter Epilogue breakdown

The epilogue of Lord John and the Private Matter closes one book and starts another. Here's our breakdown of the chapter.
Outlander Season 6 -- Courtesy of Robert Wilson/STARZ
Outlander Season 6 -- Courtesy of Robert Wilson/STARZ /

We come to the end of Lord John and the Private Matter with the epilogue. This is a rather lengthy epilogue with a lot going on as it closes one book and helps to start another.

Lord John Grey is back in London. He managed to make it back, and he is not alone. There are a few characters from the previous chapter back in England, and it’s clear that everyone will now get to follow the life they somewhat want.

I do still feel like there’s a little missing. I think the mystery of it all got a little too messy in the end, which meant a slightly disappointing end for me. However, I still enjoy learning more about Lord John.

Breaking down the Lord John and the Private Matter Epilogue

We pickup with Lord John Grey and co. back in London. They’re at Benedicta’s home, where she is hosting a party to celebrate the victory at Plassey. There is some general excitement around the place, and we find out that Trevelyan has managed to get away with Maria, but Jack Byrd made the choice to return to England and leave Trevelyan behind.

Jack is still employed as a footman, while Tom Byrd has been instructed to watch out for thievery at the place. We also see that Stephan von Namtzen is back, but John is trying to avoid him.

 Everything about Trevelyan’s disappearance has been buried by the news of the military victory. We find out that Trevelyan had said that word would eventually arrive that he had been lost at sea. This allows him and Maria to live their lives in Maria. We also find out that Trevelyan is the type of man to kill himself. He made it clear that he would take Maria in his arms and throw himself overboard if she were to die of malaria.

As for Olivia, well, it turns out that she has little to worry about. Malcolm Stubbs is interested in her and would like to marry her. John gives him consent for that, and Malcolm suggests that John should marry his sister. This is something John initially contemplates just to allow his lineage to continue, but he decides against it in the end. His regiment is set to depart for war.

The regiment has new orders, but Stephan would like John to be assigned to his own regiment as a liaison. Stephan and John share a look at the end, hinting that there could be something more.

Could the chapter be used in a TV series adaptation?

This makes for a great ending for a TV series pilot. It’s one of those endings that wraps up the story, but it sets things up for the future. I do think that if the story was ever to be used in a TV series, this chapter would be included.

However, there would need to be a slight change. That is to how we find out about Trevelyan. We’d need to see that conversation take place on the ship. Then we could have John comment to someone, maybe even Namtzen or Quarry that the news has overshadowed things with Trevelyan. This could even be a comment to Stubbs, who is now courting and wants to marry Olivia.

Things need to be shown on the TV screen. Just telling things doesn’t work all that well, and too much is internalized with the Lord John books. So, adapting this chapter would take time and be split in two parts of the story.

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