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|I don't read it that way
Written by Laraine
(3/14/2011 1:47 p.m.)
in consequence of the missive, These lines have always bothered me, penned by Lauren Ashley
I think that Harriet is less regretted and the intimacy between her and Emma sinking is due to two things: Emma coming to her senses and the awkwardness of Harriet aspiring to marry the man Emma is marrying.
The way I see it, Emma finally realizes that what she was playing at with Harriet was a monstrous intrusion on a life that would have been happier had Emma never meddled in it. Had she never had anything more than a calm good will toward Harriet, Mr. and Mrs. Robert Martin would have had an additional year or so of happiness: Emma nearly ruined it altogether. Awkward!
Also, I think Emma finally concludes that Mr. Knightley was right all along: she and Harriet were simply not well suited as intimates. If you look back at what he said in chapter 5, you see that it pretty much had a grip on what was wrong from the beginning.
Finally, there would have to be a certain amount of awkwardness about Harriet's having admitted being infatuated with/in love with what turns out to be Emma's husband. No matter what else happens, that would always make it easier for Harriet to spend more time with her new family than with Emma.
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