This chapter centers almost exclusively around Reatha’s bigamous marriage to Lawrence Converse, initially known to her as a purported wealthy rancher. Hell-bent upon returning to Los Angeles but prohibited from living anywhere without her parents, Reatha persuades her mother and father to return with her and emerges from exile in El Centro; the family settles in the Los Angeles suburb of Burbank. Suffocated by her lack of autonomy, Reatha defies her parents and juvenile authorities by leaving home and quickly plunges into marriage to gain freedom. Then, terrified by the discovery of her groom’s true identity and marital status, Reatha disappears. Lawrence, charged by his lawful wife with bigamy and pursued by police, likewise vanishes. The chapter also includes a thorough character profile of Lawrence Converse and in-depth documentation of his background prior to his marriage to Reatha.
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