Day 13: 34, 35
These are laugh-out-loud chapters for me! I love the conversation that Scarlett and Rhett had when the former visited the latter in his prison cell. Just imagine how Scarlett squirmed at Rhett’s mockery. And the shame! Ooh, Scarlett, you deserve it!
And oh, I am so wrong with one of my previous assumptions! The secret kissing scene of Ashley and Scarlett is not yet the height of her coquetry. That would be her new attempt to steal Frank! From her sister! And all in the name of money!
Well, we have a dilemma here. We all know that it is never moral to steal someone’s fiancé, and your sister’s at that. But since Tara is the driving force that’s making Scarlett do all her scheming and manipulating, could we really blame her? She swore that she will never be hungry again, and since this is a world where we need to satisfy our basic needs (food and shelter), does morality have any weight in the decisions that she makes?
Most of the characters in the novel are choosing to live with dignity despite poverty instead of doing something to ward off the difficulties brought to them by the war. But Scarlett is just getting way out of her way. She is pushing her chances to the extremes!
Day 14: 36, 37
And what do you know? We see Frank and Scarlett get married, and we see Scarlett slowly transform not into a lady, but into a businesswoman. That is hardly surprising in these modern times, but the mid 1800’s is a far cry from the concrete jungles where everyone regardless of sex works like a horse, so to speak.
And oh, Rhett just got out of jail. And he’s so filthy rich, way, way richer than Frank, that Scarlett is filled with regret for her hasty marriage with Frank. But she still got that loan from Rhett, which she could have been multiplied more had she only waited and had she not let Rhett see her true intentions.
I find this chapter very amusing because of the author’s comical treatment of Scarlett’s way of doing her business. It even borders on sheer hilarity, what with the shocked and disapproving reception of the Atlanta people for Scarlett’s behavior.
The next chapter is a stark contrast, as we hear from one of the country boys who gets involved in the killing of Jonas Wilkerson. And somehow, Ashley is dragged into this group of Southerners avenging their own: the Ku Klux Klan.
What is exactly going on at Tara, we could only rely on the Fontaine boy’s word. Scarlett, as expected, is in a state of unrest.
Day 15: 38, 39
One of the most poignant moments just took place in this chapter: Old Peter being looked down by Yankees right in front of his face. I do not know what I would have done if I were in his situation, but yes, I could only have seethed in anger. But times are different now, and people do not just hold their anger when others talk against them right in their presence.
And right after this chapter is another dramatic moment. Gerald dies, not because his mind is failing him, but because his neck was broken while uhm, horsing around. We learn of Suellen’s attempt to make a traitor out of Gerald by tricking him to sign a document that cleanses him of any connection with the Confederates, which also promises the reward of money. And Gerald, in a fleeting moment of clarity, tears the document and throws his rage at Suellen.
So you see, it’s not only Scarlett who is being undignified here. It runs in the family. Or does it? I say that the circumstances call for it, and how a person is brought up plays a huge factor as to how he will react to such a situation.
Day 16: 40, 41
There’s a lot of talking nowadays, but I quite enjoyed them, particularly the eulogy delivered by Will and the conversation between Scarlett and Old Miss Fontaine. Thinking about it, it’s really questionable why Will was the only person who spoke in memory of Gerald. He is the person who knew him the shortest. But number of years is not necessary proportional to quality of relationship.
What I am trying to say is that this Will character surprises me. He is supposed to be uneducated, and yet he speaks sensible stuff. The only thing that I think is objectionable about him is his intention to marry Suellen. Well, people need to procreate, don’t they?
And here’s another Scarlett-Ashley moment. When I just thought that this love affair is going to be over, what with Ashley planning to find work at the North, Scarlett suggests that he takes over one of the sawmills. She almost lost the battle had it not been for the intervention of Melanie, who is quick to rebuke Ashley for refusing Scarlett’s offer.
At this point, I pity Ashley. It’s the end of the world for him, and he knows it.
Note: Original notes with some irrelevant conversation originally posted at GoodReads – The Filipino Group. Atty. Monique is still reading this while I am backtracking. Her blog is Bookish Little Me.