Stargirl Chapters 17-20 Summary

In chapter seventeen even though Leo is happy to be in love, he is fearful that everyone knows about it. After school Stargirl asked Leo if he wanted to see an enchanted place. Then she walked him to the place in the desert where he had followed her that one day, which she referred to as stalking. The place they went wasn't filled with sand, but with mica, which are tiny pebbles. The saguaros, different kinds of cactus plants, stand out in the barren landscape with the occasion purple Maricopa flower dotting the scene. When they had walked and talked together for awhile, they stopped. Stargirl sat down and told Leo to take off his shoes. They were facing the mountains. She told him to do nothing, not even think, to try to erase himself, so he becomes one with nature. Eventually, Leo held onto Cinnamon and quieted his thoughts. He lost awareness of the rat in his hands and felt peaceful. When he opened his eyes again, darkness had descended, and Stargirl had wandered off. Leo put on his shoes, and they walked home.

Chapter eighteen describes how Leo felt as though they were the only two people at school. Initially, it was pleasant, but it turned isolating. No one spoke to or looked at them as they walked down the hall together. Leo mentioned the feeling to Kevin at lunch when he noticed only the two of them sat at their table. Kevin said that people were giving Stargirl the silent treatment, and Leo was an unwilling recipient due to his proximity to her. At Stargirl's lunch table, it was only her, Dori Dilson, and one other freshman. Leo was upset because he felt like Stargirl didn't deserve that after all the nice things she had done for people, but they apparently only remembered the times she had not supported her school and her team. Stargirl, however, didn't seem to notice.

In chapter nineteen Leo is at Archie's, and Archie is explaining to Leo the Amish practice of shunning, which is when they ignore a member of the community who has done something wrong. Leo wished Stargirl could just be like everyone else so that they wouldn't treat her this way. Archie continued to talk to Leo in riddles about the uniqueness of Stargirl. They decided to ask Senor Saguaro about her. Archie spoke to the cactus in Spanish, then translated his answer for Leo. The cactus told him that it boils down to whose affection Leo values more: Stargirl's or the others. Leo wasn't sure how to answer it.

In chapter twenty Stargirl won the next round of the oratorical contest, which meant she would be going to the state finals in April. She would practice giving her speeches to Leo, but they were different every time. They enjoyed riding their bikes around together. She would point out small things that Leo had never noticed, such as bugs on the ground or oddly colored doors. Stargirl told Leo that she wanted to drive a lunch truck someday to deliver food to people who worked in office buildings. She delivered cards and gifts to people she didn't even know, which helped Leo realize that she was the one who gave him that porcupine necktie for his birthday years ago. She'd had her mother sew it.



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