Outlander Book Club: Lord John and the Hellfire Club Part 2 breakdown

Lord John Grey goes on a mission to get answers about Robert Gerald's death. Here's a look at Lord John and the Hellfire Club Part 2.
Outlander Season 3 -- Courtesy of Aimee Spinks/STARZ
Outlander Season 3 -- Courtesy of Aimee Spinks/STARZ /

Lord John is invited to the Hellfire Club in Lord John and the Hellfire Club Section 2. This is a chance to get some answers about Robert Gerald’s death.

This chapter starts to push forward the story. It gives us clues as to what happened to Gerald and who could have attacked him. One thing is certain: This was a planned attack.

We continue to see the character of John Grey grow in this chapter. He is able to step away from the obsession of Jamie Fraser a little, as he needs to focus on something else. I think even if Gerald didn’t also have red hair, John would have taken this matter a little personally. After all, it turns out that someone wanted to blacken Gerald’s name after his death.

Breaking down Lord John and the Hellfire Club Section 2

The section picks up a couple of days after the attack. John is trying to figure out who could have wanted Gerald dead. Harry Quarry is also involved in the theories and questions. He wants to get to the bottom of this, especially when a broadsheet is sent out calling Gerald a “he-w***e.”

The two meet at Joffrey House at a get together. Not only did Harry want John to come to this, but Bubb-Doddington sent a note to John as well. It’s clear that B-D is up to something just from this.

There are plenty of politicians at the party. However, John isn’t interested in mingling. He wants to speak to Harry, bringing up the fact that someone wants to blacken Gerald’s name after his death. Why would someone want to do that? Who gains from that happening?

There is a side note of John noticing a man called George Everett at the party. This man was connected to the reason John was sent to Ardmsuir, and it’s clear that George isn’t that comfortable seeing John back.

Back to the party, John and Harry talk to Lucinda Joffrey. She chose to keep this gathering going to avoid any suggestion that the rumors about Gerald hold any weight. As the conversations flow, we learn that B-D had invited Gerald  to Sir Francis Dashwood’s home. It turns out that there is a group that gets together there, with B-D and Dashwood at the center. This group changes people overtime, but they all have one goal: to gain influence through any and all means, including dishonorable ones.

B-D uses the gathering as a chance to invite John to Medmenham, which is where the Hellfire Club meets. It’s clear that B-D would like John to join, but why? John holds back at first so that he can talk to Lucinda and Harry, but he realizes that the name “Dashwood” was the last thing Gerald said.

The plot thickens more when George finally approaches John. He hopes that John accepts the invitation to Medmenham. He does it in a seductive way, suggesting that George has suggested the invitation for John. There is something much bigger going on and John has to accept.

Could the section be used in a TV adaptation?

If a Lord John Grey spin-off happened, could this chapter be used? I think this whole short story would work as an episode of a TV series, and we would need this chapter to play out in it. This is the part that thickens the plot.

There are a lot of cogs in the wheel when it comes to Gerald’s death. If John wants to figure out the murder, he needs to meet with the right people, and he needs to be invited to the Hellfire Club. That’s the only way in.

It’s through some of these conversations and meetings that we get more backstory on John. We learn a little more about why he was exiled to Ardsmuir, but we get a chance to see how he has done his penance and is now welcomed back into society. This is important to see how John ends up becoming the Governor of Jamaica and how he has so much influence in later Outlander books.

So yes, I’d see this whole chapter playing out in a TV show if it was used in an adaptation.

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