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Outlander: Who is Malva’s father according to the book series?

Jessica Reynolds stars as Malva Christie in Season 6 of Starz's Outlander
Jessica Reynolds stars as Malva Christie in Season 6 of Outlander. Pic credit: Starz

In Episode 3 of Outlander, the question of Malva Christie’s (Jessica Reynolds) true parentage was brought to the fore.

Tom Christie (Mark Lewis Jones) arrived at Fraser’s Ridge with his two adult children, Allan (Alexander Vlahos) and Malva. The assumption here is that the pair is Tom’s biological children.

However, some questioning has led to viewers wondering who Malva’s birth father might be.

Malva’s parentage questioned in Outlander

Tom Christie and Jamie Fraser know each other thanks to a joined stint at Ardsmuir Prison. When he arrived to claim land at the Ridge, no one questioned if his children were biologically his or not.

Then, in Episode 3 of Outlander, Claire Fraser (Caitriona Balfe) wondered how the timeline lined up with Malva’s father, Tom. In theory, she was conceived while Tom was at Ardsmuir.

As pointed out by The Cinemaholic, Jamie mentions that Malva could have been born in the New World and to Tom’s second wife. If this were the case, the timeline would work.

Then, when Jamie Fraser (Sam Heughan) happened to come upon Malva, he asked her some questions about where she was born, and when she stated it was in Scotland, he realized that Tom is probably not her father.

Tom is quite pious, and there have been references to his wives, both of whom are deceased. Malva revealed to Young Ian (John Bell) that her mother had been hanged for being a witch, which adds an interesting take to the situation once you compare what is known about her from the books.

So, what happens in the Outlander book series by Diana Gabaldon?

Jessica Reynolds as Malva, Mark Lewis Jones as Tom, and Alexander Vlahos as Allan Christie, as seen in Season 6 of Starz's Outlander
Jessica Reynolds as Malva, Mark Lewis Jones as Tom, and Alexander Vlahos as Allan Christie, as seen in Season 6 of Outlander. Pic credit: Starz

The Outlander books reveal Malva’s parentage

SPOILER ALERT: The remainder of this article discusses the book series on which Starz’s Outlander is based. Please proceed with caution if you wish to avoid potential spoilers.

According to the book series, Malva and her family arrive at Fraser’s Ridge in book five, titled The Fiery Cross. This book was used as the basis for Season 5 of Starz’s adaptation of Outlander.

While the Christies didn’t arrive on the Ridge until Season 6 in the TV show, very little occurred in book five in relation to Malva’s parentage, the important stuff appearing in book six, A Breath of Snow and Ashes, which is what Season 6 is based on.

Here, readers discovered that Malva’s birth father is a man called Edgar.

Who is Edgar?

Oh, you know, just Tom’s brother.

Malva’s mother, Mona, had been staying with Edgar and his wife, Darla, while Tom was in prison. Malva was conceived and birthed during his stay at Ardsmuir, and when Tom was released, he took on the parental role to Malva, even though his brother was the biological father.

As for that comment Malva made to Young Ian about her mother being put to death for witchcraft? Well, there is a little seed of truth to that.

Mona did actually die by hanging. However, it wasn’t for being a witch.

Instead, it was because she had murdered Edgar and gotten caught for it.

As yet, none of this has played out in the TV series and it will be interesting to see how it all unfolds.

Season 6 of Outlander currently airs every Sunday night on Starz.

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