If there is anyone out there that understands the ending of Fire and Hemlock, I'd be very grateful for a detailed explanation. The ending corresponds approximately to Part 4 (Nowhere), Section 6, where

Polly comes to save Tom. Specifically, the part set in the magical swimming pool.

I think I first read that section 20 years ago, but I still don't really know what happens here.

The relevant section starts around the words:

At first sight it seemed to be autumn in the garden.

Fire and Hemlock was, of course, written by the late great Diana Wynne Jones. She is unaccountably missing from this site, so I'm happy to remedy this omission.

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    What is confusing about this ending? – user111 Aug 14 '17 at 20:01
  • Hi Hamlet. Well, I don't understand what happened. Judging from what I've read over the years, I'm far from alone. And I've never heard of a clear detailed explanation of it either. Possibly everyone is afraid of spoiling the book. – Faheem Mitha Aug 14 '17 at 20:03
  • If it's not clear what I mean by "the ending" I could elaborate. – Faheem Mitha Aug 14 '17 at 20:05
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    There are two blog posts that give an explanation of the ending. Here and here. I'm not sure that's the only interpretation, but the blogger has certainly noticed some very relevant things. – Peter Shor Aug 15 '17 at 13:55
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    @PeterShor Sounds like you should write an answer, provided you can make sense of the horse. – Faheem Mitha Sep 30 '17 at 9:25

This article has a very good interpretation https://hashtagsarahwrites.wordpress.com/2014/04/17/solving-fire-and-hemlock-massive-spoilers/comment-page-1/

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    Welcome to the site! Please can you edit this answer to include some of the actual information in the linked article? Link-only answers are discouraged on Stack Exchange, because they become worthless if the link goes dead later. It's better to preserve the information here, with a link to credit the source, so that the Q&A is useful for posterity. – Rand al'Thor Nov 14 at 15:50
  • Hi Robbin, thank you very much for the link, which I quickly read through. I don't think I've seen this article before, though it seems it was written in 2014. I think including a reasonable summary would be difficult, but you could give it a shot, because the linked-to page might disappear. I agree, the explanation given seems quite good, and better than most. – Faheem Mitha Nov 15 at 5:41

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