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|The end of chapter 12
Written by Jenny Allan
(10/7/2005 5:51 p.m.)
First of all, I think Anne misread Wentworth's look of irritation when she arrives at the carraige instead of Mary, thinking that he's only interested in her as she can be a help to Louisa. I think his look of irritation is with Mary, that once again she has to have her way, at the expense of what the right thing is to do. Also has Anne considered that one of the reasons he wants her to stay in Lyme is that he plans to return there himself? I'm sure he knows that Anne would knock herself out caring for Louisa if anyone would let her. She needn't fret on that account.
His attitude during the carraige ride is chiefly in deference to Henrietta, to keeping her calm, I think. Once he does let himself go, a bit and begins blaming himself and here I think Anne's thoughts about Louisa's unpersuadable temper are a little uncharitable, though wholly understandable. Anne is not perfect.
I very much like the ending of the chapter:
It was growing quite dusk, however, before they were in the neighbourhood of Uppercross, and there had been total silence among them for some time, Henrietta leaning back in the corner, with a shawl over her face, giving the hope of her having cried herself to sleep; when, as they were going up their last hill, Anne found herself all at once addressed by Captain Wentworth. In a low, cautious voice, he said --
"I have been considering what we had best do. She must not appear at first. She could not stand it. I have been thinking whether you had not better remain in the carriage with her, while I go in and break it to Mr. and Mrs. Musgrove. Do you think this a good plan?"
She did: he was satisfied, and said no more. But the remembrance of the appeal remained a pleasure to her -- as a proof of friendship, and of deference for her judgment, a great pleasure; and when it became a sort of parting proof, its value did not lessen.
This is such a small thing, but it's so important to Anne. I think it more than just "proof of friendship" but I'm glad Anne can take some comfort from it. Also, it's a little bit romantic too, isn't it? I never noticed it before, but the description of the darkening countryside, Henrietta asleep and this little conversation, is really quite intimate.
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