Summary and Analysis
Lon attempts to contact Allie, but he is unsuccessful. His first attempt was at 7:00 p.m., and almost three hours later, she still is not back in her hotel room. Something is bothering him, although he is unable to initially quite recall what it is. Lon remembers the rocky start their relationship had as well as the honest assessment of his life that Allie gave him after their first date. Now, four years later, he is somewhat panicked, especially when he remembers that Allie had spent a summer in the town she was going antiquing in. Her mother made fun of Allie's summer romance, but Allie had taken the romance seriously. Lon's last attempt to reach Allie is also unsuccessful.
Lon calls from his office because staying late is standard for him, which reveals how important his career is to him, but it also offers a partial explanation for Allie's actions. If Lon puts his career ahead of his fiancé, then Allie has time to ponder her past and rethink her commitment to the relationship. Lon focuses on himself and his own needs, but his willingness to call Allie multiple times indicates that he is both concerned for her wellbeing as well as concerned about the implications this trip may have on their relationship. Although he may have been taking her for granted, Lon loves Allie.
Lon is obviously scared about what he might lose, but the more important question must be, "Is Lon more scared of losing Allie or more scared about what might happen to him?" The difference between these two extremes is immense — one focuses on Allie and the other on Lon. Readers are not currently privy to Lon's thoughts and motivations, yet the two possible interpretations of his state of mind illustrate the difference between being loved and loving another, two important thematic topics in The Notebook. Although this chapter is a short one, it is significant because it provides a contrast to the romantic reunion of the previous chapter as well as foreshadows the conflict yet to come.