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Written by Barbara
(9/29/2005 12:37 a.m.)
in consequence of the missive, CW's text, penned by Golda
I do generally want to take what he says at face value, but I think he also had all kinds of ulterior motives going on all evening, even if he didn't really realize it or would have been unwilling to acknowledge it.
Although what he says may be exactly his real opinion, I think there's more to the purpose than that. I can't quite decide, but I am inclined to think that the whole of his conversation is for Anne's benefit or intended to be overheard by her or provoke reaction in her. She is never out of his thoughts.
I kept coming back to this bit from earlier in the same chapter:
This sounds as though in their earlier relationship, Wentworth had being trying to convince her that it was possible to live in a civilized manner aboard a ship, with cooks, servants, etc. and accomodation of greater comfort than she might have supposed. There was certainly one lady he would not have hated to see aboard, even if it was eight years earlier. He knows that Anne knows this.
He is also perfectly well aware that his sister has been living aboard ships for most of the last 15 years and has enjoyed it.
Did he secretly want, hope or expect Anne to contradict his speech? Does he want her to see or think she sees a change in attitude in him?
And why is he objecting to a family or group of ladies, as opposed to one lady living with her Captain (or Admiral) husband?
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