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Summary Chapter 63

Having liquidated his assets at the shooting gallery, George Rouncewell rents the space out. He himself is employed at Chesney Wold where Sir Leicester has taking a liking to him. Indeed, George is now Sir Leicester’s personal attendant.

Presently, George rides towards the iron district. Upon arrival, he asks a passerby where he might find a Mr. Rouncewell. The passerby replies that in these parts the Rouncewell name is so prominent as to be practically ubiquitous. Indeed, according to the passerby, George will likely find a Rouncewell in the bank, the factory, or at home, take your pick. George asks for directions to the factory, and getting them, George thanks the passerby and heads toward the factory.

At the factory, George addresses a young man who happens to be Mr. Rouncewell’s son. Introducing himself as Steel, George asks the young man if he might have a word with the young man’s father. The young man accommodates George, taking the latter to his father’s office. George takes note of Mr. Rouncewell’s office which is clean, bare, and utilitarian. By and by, Mr. Rouncewell, who had been busy taking care of business, attends to George.

George speaks of his past wherein he had a friend with whom he had served as a fellow Dragoon. This friend, George tells Mr. Rouncewell, had an elder brother from whom he was alienated. Apparently, the elder brother was ashamed of the younger brother and had wished to have nothing to do with the younger brother. Suddenly, sensing that Mr. Steel isn’t who is said he was, Mr. Rouncewell asks George if Steel is indeed his name. It isn’t long when Mr. Rouncewell realizes that Mr. Steel is actually his younger brother George Rouncewell. The brothers embrace; George sheds a tear.

Contrary to George’s belief that his older brother had wished to have nothing to do with him, Rouncewell assures George that he would have welcomed him with open arms. Rouncewell speaks of George’s nieces and of the impending wedding ceremony between Rouncewell’s son and Rosa. By and by, George is taken to Rouncewell’s house where he spends the night and where George makes acquaintance of his nieces and of his niece-to-be the pretty Rosa.

The next day, George speaks of his concern of how his sudden appearance is adverse to the interests of the Rouncewells, particularly the children. George wants to remove his name from their mother’s will in order that his nieces and his nephew will receive their just share of the inheritance. Subsequently, Rouncewell assures his younger brother that that will never happen as George is their mother’s favorite son. Besides, he argues, George could do whatever he wishes with his inheritance, i.e. he can bequeath them to his nieces and nephew if that is what he wants. George defers to his older brother on the matter. Presently, George asks permission to send a letter using his older brother’s address. It’s a letter of apology to Esther Summerson with regard the Will which he had given Mr. Tulkinghorn in return for having the Bagnets spared litigation. He explains to his older brother that had he sent the letter from Chesney Wold the addressee might become unsettled. Rouncewell gives his consent.

The brothers part with the understanding that George will return for the wedding ceremony between Rouncewell’s son and Rosa. Though Rouncewell had offered George a position in the family business, George had turned it down, arguing that he would be better off serving Sir Leicester in Chesney Wold where there is the added incentive of being near their mother.

Charles Dickens