At the end of his long, arduous journey, we find Phileas Fogg desperately apologizing to his fair companion, Aouda, because he had been unable to complete his endeavor in the stipulated time, and for the unfortunate adventure he had subjected her to. Or perhaps not so unfortunate, considering she was drugged and about to be murdered at the time when he found her. But alas, after bearing all the costs of his conquest, Fogg was now destitute, incapable of providing for Aouda as he would’ve once been able to. At this moment, Aouda stuns Fogg by instead confessing her affections for him and asking him to marry her. Fogg is elated that the tides have taken such a turn and immediately instructs his valet, Jean Passepartout, to arrange for a minster to officiate the matrimony.
What madness possessed Jules Verne to subject his readers to such a disappointing defeat toward the end of an otherwise enthralling 80 days around the world? You see, in his massively acclaimed classic novel Around the World in Eighty Days, Verne subjects his affluent protagonist Phileas Fogg to taking up a challenge issued by his friends, in which he is to complete a journey around the world in no more than 80 days.
With £20,000 wagered, Fogg grabbed Passepartout and left his starting point, London, by train at 8:45pm on Wednesday, 2 October 1872. This meant that in order for him to win the wager, he would have to return to London by Saturday, 21 December, in that same year (before 8:45pm).
In the minutes after the earlier dramatic scene between Fogg and Aouda, Passepartout contacts the minister on what is to his knowledge the evening of Sunday, 22 December, and makes necessary arrangements for the wedding on Monday morning. But it is then that it dawns upon him that when the pair traveled eastwards on their adventure, they had actually gained a day — which equated to the present evening being Saturday, 21 December!