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While Father and Ernest are away, Franz finds some oysters to make a change of diet and Mother delightedly starts to prepare an oyster stew for the family. But they are not edible, and as she tastes the stew while cooking, she takes enough poison to make her collapse in pain. Franz does his best to minister to her but she gets weaker and weaker, falling into a deep coma. Franz’s desperate feeling that his mother will die and that it is all his fault somehow communicates itself to his unconscious mother, who pulls herself back to life in order to ease her son’s agony.