Lucy’s death is Mina’s gain: How the group learned from failure

As the book progresses, the group’s methods change with the prior knowledge they gained from their failed scientific attempts to stop Lucy’s transformation to more religious methods to stop Mina’s vampirism. When Lucy was turned into a vampire, she fell ill suddenly, and everyone else desperately tried to save her while lacking the knowledge to identify what was happening to her. This time, the group knew and could discover and then attempt to reverse Mina’s transformation. They do this with Van Helsing’s assistance, “As he had placed the Wafer on Mina’s forehead, it had seared it—had burned into the flesh as though it had been a piece of white-hot metal” ( Chapter 22). As prior experiences have influenced them, they used a Catholic method as their determinant, and the pain Mina is feeling is the confirmation to everyone that her transformation is in progress. Whereas with Lucy, they used a medical approach that failed spectacularly. Going back to Mina’s current fate in the second half of the quote, Jonathan states, “My poor darling’s brain had told her the significance of the fact as quickly as her nerves received the pain of it, and the two so overwhelmed her that her overwrought nature had its voice in that dreadful scream.” (Chapter 22). This further reinforces their suspicions and has them all accepting that Mina is becoming a vampire, and now they have to try new methods to save her from Lucy’s demise.