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Gringoire goes to live with La Esmeralda, but he is confused by her cold attitude. She almost completely ignores him. After several days he makes a sexual advance, which she deflects by threatening him with a knife. The frustrated Gringoire asks her why she married him. She replies that she wanted to save him from hanging.
Over supper that night, Gringoire and La Esmeralda finally begin to talk. They even become comfortable with one another, acting like old friends. As Gringoire talks about his past, La Esmeralda seems to drift into her own thoughts. She then asks Gringoire what the name "Phoebus" means, and he tells her it means "sun." She then goes to her room with her goat, locking the door behind her.
As in the previous chapter, this one also contains an element of mystery. It is hard to fathom that La Esmeralda would have agreed to marry Gringoire in order to save him from hanging, especially since her thoughts are turned to Phoebus, the handsome man who saved her from Quasimodo and Frollo. The pathetic Gringoire, a romantic and passionate man, expected his beautiful wife to respond to him. He learns, however, that she is cold and unresponsive, almost totally ignoring him. When he makes a sexual advance, she even threatens him with a knife. Though he respects La Esmeralda’s wish that their marriage not be consummated, he is optimistic and believes she will eventually come to love him.