Summary: Chapter 15 and So Be It Chapter 6 

So Be It Chapter 6 

Verity resumes her tale by bleakly stating how much she wished she’d used birth control and prevented the twins from being conceived. She knows that Jeremy and the twins are a “package deal” and that she can’t have Jeremy all to herself. She is miserable and considers leaving daily. 

One snowy night when the twins are still babies, a disturbing dream terrifies her. She writes that she wakes from a nightmare that feels like a premonition. In this dream, it’s the future and her daughters look about eight or nine. Verity dreams of Harper suffocating Chastin with a pillow in their bedroom. Verity runs in and rips Harper away, and turns to Chastin. She’s horrified to see that Chastin has no face: her features are gone, and her head is flat and smooth. Verity wakes up and sits on her bed, weeping. She realizes that the dream wasn’t just unpleasant: it also revealed to her that she did love one of her daughters, despite her feelings of apathy. Although she knows it’s not enough, she is relieved to have found some attachment to them. Jeremy wakes up and sees her crying, a rare occurrence. She doesn’t want to explain why she’s sad, so she begins to perform oral sex on him to distract him. It works, but Verity is soon distracted herself. While performing fellatio, it occurs to Verity that she doesn’t know how many sexual partners Jeremy has had. A wave of curiosity prompts her to press him for the details, and she pushes him until he admits that the total is higher than twenty. She observes that it’s odd that she doesn’t feel at all jealous about those women, but that their own daughters can bring her to tears of inadequacy. Her concerns are quieted when they have a long, intimate sex session—that is, until one of the babies’ crying interrupts them. Jeremy loses his erection and withdraws, although Verity unplugs the monitor and begs him to continue. When he seems uncomfortable, she goes to see to the babies herself. She’s irritated when she sees that Harper is the one crying, and picks up Chastin to check on her instead. She becomes infuriated by the Harper’s screaming, and walks over to her crib. She briefly tries to choke her by stuffing her fingers down her throat, but Jeremy comes in and interrupts. Harper vomits all over Verity, but Jeremy doesn’t stop to comfort her. He leaves her alone and fuming.  

Chapter 15 

Lowen is very disturbed by the unsettling contents of the last chapter of So Be It. After the attempted murder, mentions of Harper in the autobiography become less and less common. The focus of the writings gradually narrows down to only Chastin and Jeremy, until Harper disappears from the narrative altogether. Verity doesn’t write about Harper again until the girls are three years old. Before Lowen can get to the next section, Jeremy interrupts her with an offer to make dinner. The dinner Jeremy makes leads to a moment spent together on the back porch, watching a meteor shower. This romantic setting prompts both participants to share their personal histories. Jeremy opens up about his past, mentioning his upbringing on an alpaca farm in New York, his move into the realm of business and real estate following his studies, and his escape from New York in pursuit of life outside of agriculture.

He goes on to describe the difficult relationship Verity had with her own parents. They were deeply religious and disapproved of her career choice as a thriller novel writer. Verity and her parents had been estranged for thirteen years by the time she had her accident. Verity’s father told Jeremy that the deaths of their children was Verity’s own fault for her sinful choices. Lowen explains her difficult relationship with her mother, and says she reminds her a lot of the villainous main characters in Verity’s novels. Jeremy tells her that he stopped reading Verity’s books because he couldn’t separate her characters’ thoughts from Verity’s own. The two share a tense moment as a meteor flies overhead, and Lowen knows that Jeremy is thinking of kissing her. He walks her back to her room, but before he locks her in for the night, he tells her that Verity never actually read any of Lowen’s books. He was the reason she was chosen, because he thinks her work is brilliant. Lowen is so cheered by this that she finds the strength to read another chapter of So Be It before heading to bed. 


Verity’s dreams are very disturbing, and symbolically reflect a lot of her fears about Jeremy and her marriage. Verity sees more of herself in Chastin than in Harper, and so is horrified when she imagines Harper murdering her sister. When she pulls the pillow away, however, Chastin is faceless. Verity feels less threatened by Chastin than she does by Harper after this dream because she has folded Chastin into her own identity. The faceless baby is just an accessory, rather than a being with feelings who could potentially steal Jeremy’s attention and love. Protecting Chastin becomes another way for Verity to protect her relationship with Jeremy. 

When she enters the room where Chastin and Harper are crying, it’s directly connected to the babies interrupting sex with Jeremy. She sees that it’s Harper who is weeping, and immediately transfers all her resentment for Jeremy’s sexual withdrawal onto her. Verity is so obsessed with her relationship that she’s willing to go to any lengths to excuse Jeremy from blame. To her, Harper is now the cause of all of their troubles. Struggling with dark thoughts, Verity is caught in a moment of despair and impulsiveness. She’s taken over by the urge to “save” Chastin by killing Harper, and wonders if she could pass off killing Harper as a case of Sudden Infant Death Syndrome. She’s rational enough to realize that trying to make the murder look like SIDS probably won’t work, and so instead she shoves her fingers down Harper’s throat, trying to make her vomit and choke. Harper stops screaming and begins to seize. Jeremy interrupts the murder attempt by walking in, and Verity covers her tracks as best she can, pretending to be frantic that Harper won’t stop crying. The baby vomits all over Verity, and Jeremy takes her abruptly from her mother. As Verity is cleaning up, she feels abjectly furious that Jeremy doesn’t sympathize with her at all. However, instead of feeling guilt or shame for having attempted to kill her daughter, Verity only feels relief that Jeremy didn’t see her making the attempt to do so on the video monitor. In her mind, she was trying to save herself, Jeremy, and Chastin from the potential consequences of Harper’s murderous future. She’s only worried about being caught. 

As Lowen and Jeremy sit outside, questions about their pasts turn into a discussion about the difficulty of parenthood and the problems that it can cause. Verity's troubled relationship with her deeply religious parents comes from their rejection of her career as a writer. Verity’s whole being is intimately tied up in the subject of her writing, and so her parents’ attitude seems to be a direct rejection of her as a person. The fact that the estrangement lasted thirteen years, and that her father blamed her writing for the deaths of their children further underlines this.  

Lowen, too, shares details of her challenging relationship with her mother, drawing parallels between her and the villainous characters in Verity's novels. She doesn’t say aloud to Jeremy that her mother reminds her of the Verity she knows from So Be It, but she thinks about it deeply. All of the difficult relationships that Verity, Jeremy and Lowen have with their parents seem oddly similar, even though the two women have never spoken to one another. This also casts a shadow on the future for Verity’s son, Crew. Lowen wonders sometimes if her deranged behavior will have a lasting effect on him. From the evidence available to her on the results of bad parenting, it seems inevitable that it will. This fuels Lowen to keep reading So Be It, as she hopes she can learn enough to help guide Crew away from the dark paths his mother followed.