Chapter IV

136- 153

Fall turns into winter and the Lisbon girls are still locked up because their mother wants it that way. The girls are not even able to go to school and the principal Mr. Woodhouse tries to get any information about the Lisbons’ absence from their father, but Mr. Lisbon seems to have as much information as Mr. Woodhouse.
When Jerry Burden opens Mary’s locker, he looks sees that everything was in it like the time she went into school.

Years later, the boys meet Mrs. Lisbon at the station. She says that the locking up should never be a punishment, but she knows that none of the other pupils talk to the girls, only the boys and she knows what the boys’ intention was. She also thinks that the girls’ wounds because of Cecilia’s death will heal at home much better than if they stayed at school. Additional, the boys ask Mrs. Lisbon, because she is the mother, if she has any idea why all of their daughters comitted suicide, but the only answer Mrs. Lisbon gives, is that she does not know.

The girls are not only taken out of school but Lux also has to destroy her whole rock records. Lux does not agree to that and starts to cry but this does not help ans she has to throw all their records to the flames.

The girls are never seen in the neighbourhood, Lux never talks to Trip Fontaine anymore and also Joe Hill Conley never calls Bonnie as he once promised her.

Above all, Mrs. Lisbon takes her daughters to Roswell, Mexiko. Their grandmother lives there and she should try to help and to give good advices to the girls because the grandmother has made many experiences in her life. But every question the girls pose to their grandma is not answerd. She only tells them that you never get over a lost love but through the time you learn how to deal with it.

One day Mr. Lisbon starts to go to work and the only thing the girls and their mother has to do is to go every sunday to church. So nobody cares about the front garden so that there were many raccoons, who are alive, but there are also dead ones and all the parents in the neighbourhood talk the unhealthy and dirty garden of the Lisbons.

While the look up, the boys see Lux copulating with many guys on the roof of the Lisbons’ house almost every night with somebody else. Once it was the guy of a fast-food-restaurant and the other time a guy in a drab gray suit. The boys ask themselves everytime how Lux can do such things on her own house and why her parents never notice the noise the boys and men make when they climb up the stairway. Additional they wonder how Lux meet all those guys because in all the time, she has been locked up, she never left the house. Every time when the boys observe Lux having sex, they learn new thechniques of love, but they do not know the real words of this actions so they also make up some new nomenclature.

Mrs. Lisbon stops cooking for her daughter and because of that Lux loses weight, what especially the boys notice, because of their daily observation. They can discribe her jutting ribs and the insubstantiality of her thights.

Lux does not talk to many pupils because she has not the possibility to do that but once she talked to Bob McBrearley. She told him that she can not live without getting it regular on her roof. Willie Tate however says that is does not seems that she likes the sex that much and he is not the only one who says that. Though she has many guys up on the roof but anyway she never has sex without any protection.

One day the EMS truck appears the third time in front of the Lisbons’ house. Lux Lisbon is carried out of the house on stretcher, but against all expectations she is alive, but she seems to be in pain. But this fact does not prevent her from applying lipstick. The boys see this and when they find out that Woody Clabault’s sister has the same one, he put on the lipstick and the boys kissed each other to learn how Lux Lisbon tasts.They boys also had many drinks of alcohol and the next day erveryone refuse that this night befor never has happend.

Mrs. Patz sister calls and tells that Lux seems to have suffered a burst appendix and everybody is surprised because they all thought that Lux maybe tried to kill herself, too. Brent Christopher supports her statment because he was right next to Lux in the hospital. Dr. Finch is her attending doctor. First the doctor carries out an investigation concerning the appendix but than he realises that Lux has no pain there anymore. Her real problem is that she does not know if she would be pregnant. She asks the doctor if he could give her a pregnancy test. When she is asked why she goes to the hospital because of a test she answere that this is the only way to get out of the house. Dr. Finch helps Lux by not telling anything about the possible pregnancy to her mother and by lying about the illness.
Dr. Finch not only gives a pregnancy test but a complete gynecological exam to Lux Lisbon. Ms. Angelica Turnette is the gynecologist. She finds out that Lux is not pregnant but that she has HPV and this tells Dr. Finch to Lux later.
Also Lux talks to Dr. Hornicker, the doctor Cecilia had also talked to. This doctor finds out in the conversation with Lux that this girl does not sleep anymore and that this is a result of depression. As well he says that she has a Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder.
After a few months everybody in the neighbourhood agrees with the doctor.


The boys watch the Lisbon house and wait for something to happen, like signs of the girls. Mr. Lisbon goes out of the house alone and is walking around like a skeleton. Mr. Lisbon gets fired because the children´s parents are worried that Mr. Lisbon cannot cope with his own family and so conclude he cannot teach the children. After that nobody leaves the house again and the boys are not sure if they live or not. One day Uncle Tucker sees Bonnie go to the place where Cecilia died and say the rosary. Even in winter the boys do not get any sign of the girls. Only if the girls go out for some minutes and go in again. Therese continues using her ham radio sending messages. The girls also order a lot of catalogues. So the boys try to get them themselves to know what they are doing. They try to find out whether the girls feel bad locked up in their house.


Because a lot of trees in the Lisbon’s street are attacked by rodents, some workers appear with the aim to fell them.  As they want to chop the elm in the Lisbon garden, the four girls run out of their house, make a circle around the tree and protest. The elm is so important for them, because it was Cecilias favourite tree. They are successful.


After a long time, when the boys can hardly remember the beautiful Lisbon girls and nearly have forgotten what they look like, the girls start to contact them. At the beginning the guys find some cards with the Virgin Mary in the mailbox, in their bicycle wheels and under the wiper of their cars. Afterwards they recognize that the Lisbon girls have given them some subtle signs and it is like they are sending a message in Morse. On May 7 the neighbourhood boys get their first letter from the girls written by Lux. In the next few weeks other letters arrive, expressing various moods, each envelope delivered to their houses by the girls themselves. The boys are surprised and happy and after such a long time they see their chance to stay in contact with the mysterious girls. One day they take the courage to call the Lisbons. They develop a new kind of communication by holding the phone near a record player. The guys often choose some love songs to express their feelings and the girls do the same. All the songs send a special message to their listeners. But one day the contact is cut off abruptly.


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