Mary is doing her best to return to normal life. While she has been banned from cooking, she has to find something else to do to earn money. She gets a job in a laundry, washing and pressing clothes to pay for her room and board. Trying to find a better place to live, she ends up in a boarding house full of cots. It is nothing to find a knee in your face or a leg in your stomach in the middle of the night as someone tries to head to the bathroom. Knowing that there is something better out there, she strikes out to find a decent living location. As she moves through the streets, she runs into an old neighbor. After some small chit chat, she asks if she needs a boarder, having found out that the husband was killed in an accident. Its the ideal location, back among friends and a familiar place. But when Alfred looks for her, she is unsure of what to think. She knows that its a bad idea to even think about getting back into a relationship with him, but he seems insistent.
Alfred had told her he was going to marry the woman that he was boarding with, but after several months of being engaged, there is no sign that they will ever tie the knot. She is more concerned with her son, than him, and she throws her all into making sure that his grades are maintained. When she issues a silence ban in the house so he can study for an exam that would move him ahead a couple of grades, Alfred starts getting restless. All he can think of is Mary and how he misses her. He begins to compare the two women, and knows that although Mary might have given him the third degree many times, she was the best thing for him. So he leaves Liza and begins to make plans to convince Mary to take him back. But she wants nothing to do with him. She has moved on with her life, and her current situation has no place for him. Haven given up drinking for the last woman he was with, he finds himself back on familiar territory and in his favorite pubs again.
Mary gets tired of laundry and finds work in a bakery. Giving the man her real name but lying to the Department of Health on where she is working, she wonders how long it will before she is discovered. It does not take long for Dr. Soper to track her down, and when she goes to the back to get her things, the woman there who has known all about her from the beginning, helps her make her escape. She runs back to her room to get her items and try to come up with a game plan to get ahead of Dr. Soper. But the chase is on again, and she is uncertain of her future..
This week we are reading chapters 14-20
- Mary hates her job, but she has to survive. Do you think she could have found something more fulfilling?
- The Triangle Fire really does a number on Mary and she refuses to go back to the laundry. How would you have reacted in that situation?
- When caught in the bakery, the thought of going back to North Brother makes her bolt. Could she have handled herself better? Did she have any other recourse available?