Ruby Bell In ‘Maxton Hall’ Explained: What Happens To Ruby In The End?

With ambitions as high as they can be, Ruby Bell is something of a Cinderella, except her family is nice to her. She comes from a poor background and prefers to be invisible to the crowd at the school she attends. It’s her scholarship that led her to Maxton Hall; otherwise, she thinks she has no place with the cousins of an Arab Sheikh or the kid of Manchester United’s coach in a school where every brick reeks of money. Coming from a family where nobody’s been fortunate enough to attend university, Ruby dreams of going to Oxford, and she works hard for it. Her life as an ordinary and invisible student was going well, but her fate led her to catch her teacher, Mr. Sutton, and Lydia Beaufort making out in the classroom. After this incident, Ruby’s life changes in a way she wouldn’t even dare to imagine, and it’d be fair to say it changes for the better.

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Spoilers Ahead

Ruby doesn’t plan to spill the beans about the scandal she just witnessed, but Lydia’s brother James wants to shut her off without knowing this. Ruby refuses to take the letter of recommendation from Sutton, as she fears that if he gets fired, the letter will become useless. James, the Harry Styles of the school, shows up to talk to Ruby. Ruby refuses to take the bribe from him and rejects his poor attempt at seducing her. Later that day, she asks Principal Lexington for the letter of recommendation, and he tells her that she’d only get it if she managed the welcome party without any setbacks. Ruby and her teamwork their hardest to make sure nothing goes wrong, but James’ strippers gatecrash the party, and the parents of the new kids witness a flash mob of strippers. Lexington tells Ruby to take James into the events committee, and now she’s stuck with him. 

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James takes over the committee with his charm and bright ideas, and he suggests they change the theme to the Victorian Era. For the poster, Ruby needs a dress of such decadence, and she asks James if he can access his company’s wardrobe for a picture. James denies her request, and Ruby decides she’s going to do this herself. Her sister Ember is a fashion genius, and she agrees to make a dress for her. All goes well, and Ember manages to make a gorgeous Victorian dress. Ruby texts about it in the WhatsApp group and tries to bully James, only for him to bully her back. Meanwhile, she has left the iron on top of the dress, and the little WhatsApp beef she started ends up in the dress getting burned. She breaks down in tears, but Ember is so kind that she only supports her sister and makes the best of the situation.

James and Ruby come closer than before when she apologizes to him for insulting him in class. James sees that he has feelings for Ruby, and deep down, Ruby has feelings for him too. She’s amazed when James shows up at her doorstep while casually texting and asks her to go to London with him. She reaches London to see the original store of Beaufort, and the beauty of the place makes her jaw drop. The modest Ruby now finds herself in a tricky situation. James asks him to try the most beautiful dress of the lot, and she agrees and asks him to suit up as well. When she comes out wearing the dress, she sees James getting shy, and both of them pose for pictures. Probably the most memorable day of her life ends in a heartbreak when Daddy Beaufort shows up in the store and insults her in front of everyone, saying this dress is only fit for a queen. 

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Ruby finds herself and James on the poster of the Gala the next day, and she asks James to stop the unwanted attention he’s bringing to her. The poster led to her having an anxiety attack, as she’s never known how to deal with being the center of attention. James refuses to let things go back to normal, and that makes her fall for him even more. Ruby soon goes to a party James invites her to and encounters a past trauma when Cyril pranks her by pushing her in the pool. James saves her, but she remembers how she fell in the water when she was young, and a boat crashed into her dad when he jumped in the water to save her. She holds herself responsible for her dad being in a wheelchair, and James realizes how big of a trauma she’s been through. The next morning, she is flirting with James on text, and they walk into the school together. The looks everyone is giving her make her uncomfortable, but James tells her that the best way to deal with it is to be completely nonchalant. James tells her that he won’t make it to the gala, as his daddy’s business wants him to be in London.

The day of the gala happens to be the same day as her birthday, and she opens the gifts James sent for her. With a shiny new Beaufort bag, she finds a sketch James made for her, and she’s over the moon. She goes to the gala wearing the same dress she tried on earlier, thanks to James. Her happiness doubles up when James shows up at the event, and they end up kissing each other, letting all their inhibitions go. Daddy Beaufort arrives to spoil the perfect moment, and she fears for James’ safety. James’ cold behavior and rude words end their relationship, and this breaks Ruby inside out. She returns the gifts James sent to her, with a little note mentioning the F word. She turns her focus to the Oxford interview, and the gala success earns her the coveted letter of recommendation from principal Lexington. 

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Ruby sets her mind to completely focusing on the interviews, and her preparation is not much different from that of the Olympic athletes. She manages to ignore James and refuses to even acknowledge his presence on the first day, and she also does well in the first round of the interview. An Oxford counselor subtly flirts with her, and James snaps at the guy. Rose is still heartbroken over his treatment of her, and she gives him a mouthful for wasting everybody’s time, and she leaves for the dorm. When James follows her, she tells him to open up if he wants to be with her. She’s tired of the vague reasonings he comes up with, and eventually the romantic tension gets the better of both of them. Ruby stops in the middle while they are making out and asks about the actual reason he stopped talking. When he says it out loud, she finally trusts him and asks him to keep no more secrets from her. Ruby calls them a couple before making love to him, and they are now a couple who treat each other with kindness. She slays the final interview and leaves for home, knowing James and she are okay. 

Ruby gets a happy ending in the first season, as she has probably booked her seat in Oxford and her parents have managed to get a stair lift installed. They don’t have much financially, but they’ve got each other, and this is a family that knows what wholesome love is. Throughout the show, you see James having everything but a good family and Ruby being the complete opposite. She has also come a long way from the girl she was, hiding herself in the crowd, to a woman who’s independent and stands up for herself and the man she loves. Ruby Bell is actually a likeable character who grows on you as the show runs its course. 

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Aniket Mukherjee
Aniket Mukherjee
Aniket is a literature student pursuing his master's degree while trying to comprehend Joyce and Pound. When his head is not shoved in books, he finds solace in cinema and his heart beats for poetry, football, and Adam Sandler in times.

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