Scene Being Changed: (Chbosky 202-213) The scene being changed is the day that Sam, Charlie’s love interest, leaves for college. The previous night, things had gotten intimate between her and Charlie, but Charlie freaked out when she began to touch him. That night, he had a dream about his Aunt Helen touching him the same way that Sam did. On the day that Sam left, Charlie returned home and reality sank in. Here, we realize that Charlie had “gotten bad again;” He had lost all of his friends, he had no one to comfort him, and he was beginning to think that the dream he had about his Aunt Helen was an actual memory. Charlie stops his letter, and doesn’t write again until two months later, when he is released from the hospital. In his last letter, it is revealed that his Aunt Helen had molested him repeatedly. He tries not to focus on this too much, and uses his last letter to emphasize his friends and family being there to help him in his recovery. By the end of the story, Charlie realizes something beautiful: “Even if we don’t have the power to choose where we come from, we can still choose where we go from there (Chbosky 211).” Charlie stays true to his words, and decides to stop writing letters so he could participate more in life. Charlie finishes his story knowing he was satisfied with his life, and even if there came a time when he wasn’t, he would be happy soon enough.
How it’s Being Changed: In the novel, Charlie was found in his “bad” state by his family. Luckily, Charlie had done no self-harm. In the change, Charlie’s parents will have come a little too late to save him. The epilogue will be written from Sam’s lamenting perspective, and is meant to be the first letter of many in a possible sequel for The Perks of Being a Wallflower.
Effect of Change: Charlie will have ended his life just before it turned around. To make matters worse, no one will know exactly why he killed himself, or of the trauma that he had suffered at the hands of Aunt Helen.
June 22, 1992
I kissed Sam. I’m sorry for sounding so “brash,” but I had to tell somebody. I know that I’ve been telling you how much I’ve loved Sam for the past nine months and I know it would be right for you to think that I was overjoyed when it happened. And I was overjoyed, but it soon turned into despair.
I guess I should tell you what happened before the kiss. On the night before she left, we were all there at Sam and Patrick’s house. Bob, Alice, Mary Elizabeth (without Peter), and I (Chbosky 198). We just sat on the rug in the “games” room, remembering things. The inside jokes weren’t jokes anymore. They had become stories. Nobody brought up the bad names or the bad times. And nobody felt sad as long as we could postpone tomorrow with more nostalgia (Chbosky 198).
After a while, Mary Elizabeth and Bob and Alice left, saying they would be back in the morning to see Sam off. So, it was just me, Patrick, and Sam. Just sitting there...