- Outlander -The 'Go Tell The Bees That I Am Gone' Ending & What It Means For Outlander Book 10, According To Diana Gabaldon
Major spoilers ahead for Go Tell the Bees That I Am Gone. Do not read if you don't want the ending of Outlander Book 9 spoiled.
The final pages of the ninth Outlander book have the peaceful setting of Claire and Jamie on the porch of the New House at Fraser's Ridge. They're surrounded by their family, friends, and neighbors celebrating the wedding of Bobby Higgins and Silvia Hardman. After fighting scheming Loyalists on his land and nearly dying (well, he did die) during the Battle of Kings Mountain, Jamie's primary concern at the end of Go Tell the Bees That I Am Gone is making sure Claire gets something to eat. But a wedding crasher — "a rider on a gray horse" — shakes up the pastoral scene on the very last page. The tricorne-wearing figure is none other than Jamie's son William, asking his father for help. With a cliffhanger ending like that, it surely means that readers will get Jamie and William joining forces to save Lord John Grey in Book 10, yes?
"You'll definitely get that," author Diana Gabaldon tells The Dipp over the phone.
When William comes and states, "I need your help," there was really never any doubt that Jamie would choose to ride alongside his son to save his estranged best friend. But in a book series where it's never safe to take anything for granted — even something as obvious as this setup for Book 10 — it's a relief to get that confirmation from the author. Especially as Jamie and William had no direct interaction in Bees and Lord John Grey is in desperate need of being saved from Ezekiel Richardson, aka the time traveler Mike Callahan.
The last time that William asked Jamie for help in a life-or-death situation was when he went to save Jane Pocock from her execution in Book 8, Written in My Own Heart's Blood. But the pair arrived too late and she had taken her own life. Saving Lord John will hopefully have a more successful outcome than the father and son's last attempt. But it's looking bleak as they presumably don't know the location of the boat Lord John's imprisoned on and Percy Wainwright may have died by poison while giving William the information about the Pallus. So Jamie and William could probably benefit from some backup in the form of other members of the extended Fraser family.
Gabaldon won't commit to saying which other family members could help Jamie and William in their quest. But she does admit, "I'm not sure how you could keep them out of it, especially Claire and Brianna, but that remains to be seen."
Though Jamie didn't see William until the very end of Bees, he did confidentially offer Brianna the chance to spend time with her brother in Savannah. And the erstwhile only children of Jamie Fraser formed a quick bond with one another, so Bree will surely want to help William in any way she can. Plus, Lord John is Bree's "favorite person — outside the family" (she made that statement before learning that he technically was her stepfather for a brief time), so she'll want to take action knowing he's in danger.
However, Bree's third child Davy is still a baby, so she may not be able to travel to help find Lord John. But she could encourage her mother to go... not that Claire would need any encouragement. She nearly always accompanies Jamie on perilous journeys and beyond loving and caring for Lord John, she owes him a favor (or two). Jamie and Claire had another passionate spat in Bees about what happened in her marriage bed with Lord John. But that should put Jamie in a better mindset to accept Claire joining him. After all, with John's life on the line and a couple of books since the accidental transgression, Jamie should be willing to let bygones be bygones... if not entirely for John's sake, for William's and Brianna's and Claire's.
However, these are details in the William and Jamie Book 10 storyline that even the author doesn't know completely. Gabaldon wrote on Facebook in September 2021 that she had begun writing the tenth and (most likely) final book in the main Outlander series. But things have been a bit busy since then.
"I have just scraps of book down at the moment," she says. "Since the launch of Book 9, I have not had any time to consider it, so to speak, so I'm just kind of poking at it. When little bits bubble up, I write them down, but I'm not working on it to any concentrated fashion, as yet."
Lord John's kidnapping is entangled in so many other plots that will need to be explored in Book 10, particularly with Richardson. (I'll have more on what Gabaldon has to say about the villain's motives in a future article.) But if there's a silver lining to Lord John being left in such a perilous position at the end of Bees, it's that his kidnapping is the thing that will finally bring Jamie and his son together in Book 10.