_____Saint-Loup arrives, and after he speaks to her, the Duchesse de Guermantes turns her attention to the narrator. But it's clear that she does so only because Saint-Loup insists, and when he leaves to speak to his mother their conversation is stilted.
The arrival of "the Prince de Faffenheim-Munsterberg-Weiningen" to see M. de Norpois causes a small stir. "'Oh, I know he's very sound,' said Mme de Marsantes, 'and that's so rare among foreigners. But I've taken the trouble to find out. He's anti-Semitism personified." The Prince's elaborate name causes the narrator to go off into a reverie on visiting a German spa when he was a child, but his romantic notions of Germany are at odds with the truth:
I speedily learned that the revenues he drew from the forest and the river inhabited by gnomes and water sprites, from the magic mountain on which rose the ancient Burg that still held memories of Luther and Louis the German, were spent on running five Charron motorcars, on a house in Paris and another in London, a Monday-night box at the Opéra, and another for the Tuesday-night performances at the Théâtre-Français.And the Prince himself undermines the narrator's expectations of national character; he "had expected to hear the rustlings of elves and the dance of the kobolds" in the Prince's speech, but "as he made his bow to Mme de Villeparisis, this short, red-faced, pot-bellied Rhinegrave said to her 'Gut-tay, Matame la Marquise,' in the accent of a concierge from Alsace." The Prince is chiefly there because he is courting M. de Norpois to get elected to the Academy of Moral and Political Sciences, and wants the Marquise's social influence too. The narrator gives us a humorous account of the delicate diplomatic negotiations involved.
The narrator's tête-à-tête with the Duchesse ends abruptly.
She rose without bidding me goodbye. She had just caught sight of Mme Swann, who seemed somewhat embarrassed by my presence. Doubtless she remembered that she had been the first to assure me that she was convinced of Dreyfus's innocence.The narrator's interest in seeing Odette is heightened because he has recently had a visit from Charles Morel, the son of his late uncle Adolphe's valet. Morel, "a handsome young man of eighteen," came at his father's request to bring some items possessed by the narrator's uncle which he had thought "inappropriate to send to my parents, and had set them aside as something that might interest a young man of my age" -- photographs of actresses and courtesans he had known, "the last images of the rakish proclivities he kept hermetically sealed from his family life."
"I don't want my mother to introduce me to Mme Swann," Saint-Loup said to me. "She's an ex-prostitute. Her husband's a Jew, and she comes here to parade as a Nationalist."
Morel proves to be an ambitious young man, "dressed expensively rather than with taste," who treats the narrator as an equal and flirts with Jupien's niece, finally ordering from her a velvet waistcoat "that was so bright-red and so loud that, for all his bad taste, he was never able to bring himself to wear."
But the thing that strikes the narrator most about the visit is the photograph he find among his uncle's collection: the sketch by Elstir of "Miss Sacripant," whom the narrator had recognized as Odette. And Morel reveals that his father had singled out this picture as one the narrator would be particularly interested in: "She's the very demimondaine who was lunching with him on that last occasion you saw him. My father was not at all sure about letting you in. It seems that you made a great impression on that loose lady, and she hoped to see you again."
Odette was the "lady in pink" whose presence brought about Uncle Adolphe's estrangement from the narrator's parents.