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CHAPTER SUMMARY AND NOTES
Meme returns from school so Aureliano Segundo comes home. Nine months later, Fernanda gives birth to a second daughter, Amaranta Úrsula. Amaranta Úrsula is a sickly child and Meme is plain. Fernanda makes her play the clavichord for the entire town; however, once Amaranta dies, Meme conveniently loses the key. Meme becomes her father’s favorite. He buys her anything she wants, and Petra is afraid that his love for Meme will get in his way for her.
Amaranta dies suddenly. Although she is focused on death, she does not want to die before Rebeca. The shroud she continually sews is for Rebeca, not herself. Death had come to her and told her that she would die when she had sewn her own shroud. Death tells her that she may make it as complicated as she can, but she must work on it as she had her sister-in-law’s. Before the final stitch, she tells the entire town that she is going to die at dusk. They send notes for her to take to the other side. When the priest arrives, Amaranta tells him that she does not need absolution because her conscience is clean. Fernanda is scandalized.
Meme, secretly, is having an affair with a banana company mechanic, Mauricio Babilonia. After the affair is discovered, he comes over to the house, but Fernanda will not let him in. The house is also full of yellow butterflies. Meme remembers that the yellow butterflies had almost led her to him because they were attracted to the smell of paint on the wall of the garage. The butterflies follow her to the theater where she meets Mauricio, and they appear where Remedios the Beauty ascends. After Fernanda finds out about the affair, she invites the mayor over and persuades him to have Mauricio taken care of. Mauricio is shot in the spine and left bedridden for the rest of his long life.
For a brief while, there is actually a father interested in the well being of one of his children; Aureliano Segundo spends his time and money on his daughter Meme. However, despite this fatherly role, the family still spirals towards destruction.
Amaranta has been told that she will die when she finishes her shroud. By knowing this, she can prepare herself. Like Remedios, she too is pure, or at least that is what she tells her priest.
Meme’s affair produces Aureliano, who is the father of the pig- tail child. This affair seems fated by the family: Meme is lead by yellow butterflies which are associated with Remedios the Beauty and the color is associated with José Arcadio (yellow flowers). There is a degree of resignation in this: it is as if there is no way they can avoid the fate that Úrsula repeatedly threatens.
Fernanda’s involvement with the mayor to end Meme’s relationship with Mauricio is similar to Úrsula’s involvement in the early politics of Macondo.