In preparation for Gertrudis’ departure, Tita prepares Gertrudiis’ favorite dessert, cream fritters. Tita becomes anxious because she knows this is the last day she will be able to tell Gertrudis about Pedro and ask for advice. Having Gertrudis and her troops at the house gave Tita great peace because it meant she did not have to speak with Pedro and could not meet up with him. Tita finally confesses everything to Gertrudis, who tells her that that she should not be ashamed. Gertrudis encourages Tita to tell the truth to Pedro and Rosaura. Gertrudis intentionally tells Tita to confess to Pedro that she is carrying his child as Pedro approaches the kitchen. Pedro overhears her and drops what he is carrying, as tears well up in his eyes.
Pedro expresses his delight over Tita’s pregnancy. He asks her to run away with him, but she demands that he think also of Esperanza and Rosaura. Pedro never before considered the pain he would cause if he and Tita abandoned the ranch and he resolves to come up with a fair plan that suits them all.
Without Tita, Gertrudis has a hard time finishing the Cream fritters. Chencha is so irritable from serving the entire army that she refuses to help. Gertrudis enlists the help of her most trusted soldier, Sergeant Treviño. Sergeant Treviño once helped uncover a spy among the troops by befriending the prostitutes. When the traitor went into one of the prostitutes, she notified Sergeant Treviño and he brutally killed the spy. Gertrudis asked why he used such brutality, and Treviño confessed that the spy was the same man who had raped his mother and sister years ago. Sergeant Treviño also once had romantic feelings for Gertrudis but he abandoned these when he discovered the passion between her and Juan. Gertrudis proves to be little help in the kitchen however but somehow she and Gertrudis complete the fritters.
During the farewell party, Tita remains in her room. She hears a drunken Pedro come to her window singing love songs and fears that Rosaura will overhear. Mama Elena’s ghost reappears and blames Tita for bringing shame onto the family. Enraged, Tita yells back at Mama Elena and claims that she hates her. Mama Elena’s ghost shrivels and becomes a small light. In the same moment, Tita begins to menstruate and realizes that she is not pregnant after all. The light that became of Mama Elena’s ghost shoots onto the yard and strikes the lamp next to Pedro causing it to explode and light Pedro aflame. Gertrudis and Tita rush to help Pedro. Rosaura comes out of her room to see what the commotion is but when she heard Pedro calling Tita’s name instead of hers, she locks herself in her room for a week.
Tita treats Pedro’s burns and stays by his side. The next morning Gertrudis, Juan and the soldiers depart. Tita is sad to see them go but Chencha is happy to be relieved of her duties. As Gertrudis and Juan leave, Tita sees Dr. Brown arriving on his carriage. His arrival confuses Tita who is not sure what she will do. Dr. Brown greets Tita with a kiss and immediately detects a change in her.
Gertrudis is frequently in motion. She moves away from the house before her sisters and never stays in one place for long because of her position in the war. In addition to relocating geographically, Gerturids also moves the plot. In this particular chapter, she helps bring resolution to Pedro and Tita regarding their possible child. Gertrudis enters to force the conversation and nudge Tita and Pedro out of their stagnation.
Prompted by Gertrudis, Tita confesses everything to Pedro. Still, unlike the Tita from the earlier months, Tita refuses to run away with Pedro. She has a greater awareness of Pedro’s responsibility than Pedro himself does at first and considers the happiness of her sister, Rosaura and their daughter, Esperanza.
The relationship between Gertrudis and Sergeant Treviño is somewhat of a reproduction of the varying relationships between Dr. Brown and Tita and Pedro and Tita. Treviño realizes that his love for Gertrudis could never overpower the passion that existed between her and Juan Alejandrez so he abandons his pursuit of her. This foreshadows what will happen between Tita and her two loves; Passion will likely be the victor.
At the end of this chapter, Tita finally musters up the courage to stand up to Mama Elena’s bullying ghost. Her actions bring her short-lived relief however when Mama Elena’s ghost decides to punish Tita by burning Pedro with fire. However, the accident has consequences that even Mama Elena could not anticipate. When Pedro is injured, he calls on Tita’s name instead of Rosaura’s. Like Gertrudis in the beginning of the chapter, this event accelerates the resolution of Tita’s relationship with Pedro.