Jane Eyre by Charlotte Bronte (Part 1)

It was pouring heavily and I couldn’t take a walk. It was extremely chilly as well. I was staying with the Reeds, including Eliza, John and Georgiana. Bessie was in the house as well. She didn’t like me very much. I picked up a book to read. It was winter and misty outside. I related the book I was reading to the weather outside. Bessie was the servant in the house. John thought that I ran out of the house when he tried to look for me. John was 14 while I was 10. He was big sized and not very wholesome. He was extremely greedy in school. John didn’t like me very much and I was quite frightened of him too. Mrs Reed never saw him abuse or bully me and I could not seek any form of recourse. One day, he struck me for hiding behind the curtains. I needed to endure both his insults and blows. He felt I was an outsider and I was a dependent and should not live like the other Reeds Then, he flung the book at me and caused a cut. I lamented that he was a murderer. Later, I was brought upstairs by Mrs Reed after she thought I tried to retaliate.

Master! How is John my master? Am I a servant? – Jane Eyre

The Reeds will have a great deal of money, and you will have none: it is your place to be humble, and to try to make yourself agreeable to them. – Miss Abbot

Why was I always suffering, always browbeaten, always accused, forever condemned? Why could I never please? Why was it useless to try to win any one’s favour? – Jane Eyre

I abhor artifice, particularly in children; it is my duty to show you that tricks will not answer: you will now stay here an hour longer, and it is only on condition of perfect submission and stillness that I shall liberate you then. – Mrs Reed

I felt resolved to revolt to the end. To me, John was not my master. Everyone thought I was a servant. Bessie told me to grateful to Mrs Reed, if not I would be at a poorhouse already. They warned me against being rude. They wanted me to repent for my sins. Mrs Reed kept belongings in a secret cabinet after her husband passed on. Mr Reed passed on 9 years ago. The room was locked. I wondered why I was always suffering? Eliza was respected and Georgiana was indulged. John always got away scot free, without punishment. Life wasn’t fair in the slightest. I contemplated running away or starving myself to death. I stayed at Gateshead Hall but wasn’t close to anyone. No one sympathized with me. Mr Reed took me in as an orphan and I was supposed to be treated like one of Reed’s children. If Mr Reed was alive, he would treat me better. I wished his spirit would join me now. Bessie entered the room and asked whether I was ill. I proclaimed that I saw a ghost and wanted to get out. They thought I was lying when I screamed. Mrs Reed thrust me back into the room and locked it.

I woke up and someone was handling me. I was finally in my own bed and was facing the nursery fire. I felt a sense of relief. Mr Lloyd was in the room as well. He was a physician. I felt comfortable around him. Apparently, according to Bessie, I felt sick. I had a fit previously and it shocked Bessie. Thankfully, I did not suffer any relapse from that incident. It was the next morning but I still didn’t feel too good. One of my favorite books was Gulliver’s Travels and Bessie helped me to get it. I had no appetite to eat or read at that moment. Bessie started singing in a melancholic voice. She wished me well and thought that Mrs Reed was being too harsh on me. I explained to Mr Lloyd why I cried. Part of the reason was that I had no family, brothers or sisters. Gateshead Hall was not my home. I did not want to be among poor people as I thought they were not educated nor kind. I sort of looked forward to school. They agreed to send me to school. My father was a poor clergyman. However, both my parents died from typhus fever. Bessie and Miss Abbot liked Georgiana more than me.

My Uncle Reed is in heaven, and can see all you do and think; and so can papa and mama: they know how you shut me up all day long, and how you wish me dead. – Jane Eyre

After a few weeks, I started feeling better. Mrs Reed was still biased in her treatment towards me. Eliza and Georgiana didn’t talk to me. John was angry towards me. I tried to punch John. I rebelled against Mrs Reed. Mrs Reed boxed me. I was excluded from family celebrations. I preferred hanging out with Bessie rather than joining in the festivities. I hugged the crib in affection. I was happy to love it. Bessie was pleasant and kind. She was my clear favorite in Gateshead Hall. There was a carriage that came to Gateshead. Bessie washed me and that helped me put on my pinafore. I was called to Mrs Reed’s presence. There was a man in a mask who called for me. He wanted me and asked how much Reed wanted since he wanted to take me. He was Mr Brocklehurst. He came to talk to me and wanted to know whether I was naughty. He asked me whether I read the Bible conscientiously. To me, the Psalms were not interesting. He commented that I had a wicked heart now. Mr Brocklehurst thought that I was deceitful. He would talk to Miss Temple and the teachers regarding admitting me. The school would be Lowood. The girls at Lowood could only live and dress simply. Miss Temple would be receiving a new girl shortly. Mrs Reed dressed well. I confessed that I was not deceitful as how she described to Mr Brocklehurst. I had feelings. After this rant, my soul was triumphant. Mrs Reed seemed frightened by my rant. I had gained a victory over Mrs Reed. It was not traditional to argue with your elders. Vengeance tasted very warm and sweet. I was very queer and frightened. I got into an argument with Bessie as well. Later, we made amends and we embraced. After that, she told me some enchanting stories. Life was good at that moment.

I am glad you are no relation of mine: I will never call you aunt again as long as I live. I will never come to see you when I am grown up; and if anyone asks me how I liked you, and how you treated me, I will say the very thought of you makes me sick, and that you treated me with miserable cruelty. – Jane Eyre

I was to leave Gateshead that day. Bessie helped me to get ready. I didn’t want to bid her goodbye. I would be going on my own. It would be a 50 miles journey. We were soon out of the country. Finally the coach stopped and I alighted. There was a servant by my side now. There was a Miss Miller who seemed to be the teacher. I was introduced to the other girls at school. There were other girls around the tables. Miss Miller already seemed to be very strict. Tonight, I would be Miss Miller’s bed fellow. Everything was orderly and there were strict rules to obey. The porridge was burnt again. The food was horrible. Many girls didn’t finish the food due to the horrible taste. Miss Temple was the superintendent of Lowood. She ordered lunch for us as she knew that the breakfast was inedible. I explored the open garden in the school. At times, I felt lonely in the school and started recollecting my thoughts. The Brocklehurst family built this place. Later, I bumped into a girl who was reading Rasselas. She allowed me to look at her book. Lowood Institution was the house where I lived now. This was an institution for educating orphans. Mr Brocklehurst was the treasurer and manager of the establishment. Miss Temple reports to him. There was a Miss Smith, Miss Scatcherd, Miss Pierrot etc. Miss Scatcherd was horrible and we were warned to be wary of. I saw that girl being punished, but she did not cry. I was amazed. This was my first day at Lowood.

It was the next day and breakfast was just as miserable. I was assigned to be an actor. We all learnt how to sew. Burns was a diligent student in Miss Scatcherd’s class and could answer her questions. However, Miss Scatcherd was angry at her for she didn’t clean her nails. Later, the teacher whipped Burns with a dozen strokes with a bunch of twigs. I felt hurt inside. It was snowing outside. The girl who I met yesterday was Burns. I found her again and she admitted she finished the book. Her real name was Helen and she came from Scotland. To her, Miss Scatcherd wasn’t cruel and Burns wanted her education before leaving. She warned me against acting out or I will get expelled. The teacher was cruel and I thought Burns didn’t have faults. Miss Temple was milder and was nicer to the students in general. Burns was better behaved in Miss Temple’s class as she was good to her. To Burns, it was not violence that overcomes hate. She advised me to read the New Testament. She wanted me to love your enemies. I thought that was impossible. She wanted me to forget the past. She gave an impassioned speech. She was a peace loving girl. Later, she left.

It would be your duty to bear it, if you could not avoid it: it is weak and silly to say you cannot bear what it is your fate to be required to bear. – Helen Burns

You are good to those who are good to you. It is all I ever desire to be. If people were always kind and obedient to those who are cruel and unjust, the wicked people would have it all their own way: they would never feel afraid, and so they would never alter, but would grow worse and worse. – Jane Eyre

When we are struck at without a reason, we should strike back again very hard; I am sure we should – so hard as to teach the person who struck us never to do it again. – Jane Eyre

My first quarter was over. The cold irritated me a lot and my feet were swollen. The food was scarce and the older girls always wanted more food from the younger ones. We had to attend church services as well. Finally, Mr Brocklehurst came to visit. Everyone greeted him as he entered the hall. I was afraid he would tell everyone what a bad kid I was. He gave a few instructions to Miss Temple to execute. He was angry that we were served cheese as he wanted us to be patient and self-denying when we grew up. He thought that we needed a tough life to learn. To him, our souls were starved. He spotted a girl, Julia Severn, with curly hair and signaled her out. Once again, he emphasized that hair must be plain and cut. Mrs and Misses Brocklehurst entered the room now. He went to fetch the stool as I had broken a slate earlier and would be punished for it. He placed me on the stool and everyone stared at me. In front of everyone, he started reprimanding me. He branded me a liar in front of everyone. I was sent her to be healed. I had to stay for half an hour more and no one could speak to me. From afar, Miss Burns smiled at me and I felt good. Miss Scatcherd was super precise at picking out the flaws of others.

This girl, Jane Eyre, who might be one of God’s own lambs, is a little castaway: not a member of the true flock, but evidently an interloper and an alien. You must be on your guard against her; you must shun her example; if necessary, avoid her company, exclude her from your sports, and shut her out from your converse. – Mr Brocklehurst

If all the world hated you, and believed you wicked, while your own conscience approved you, and absolved you from guilt, you would not be without friends. – Helen Burns

Why, then, should we ever sink overwhelmed with distress, when life is so soon over, and death is so certain an entrance to happiness – to glory? – Helen Burns

I was struck with grief. Things were so promising until today. I was crushed and could I rise again? Burns was nearby. Mr Brocklehurst was not a well-liked man around. I was afraid of being lonely and hated. Helen had the ability to calm me down. Later, Miss Temple came to my room. Miss Temple encouraged me to continue acting good. I explained my past to Miss Temple. My past was very upsetting. She would write to Mr Lloyd to find out how I was like in the past. She ordered the maid to bring tea for us. It was heavenly. Miss Temple even ordered cheese and toast for us. I heard Miss Temple talking to Burns about history and books. Later, Helen was again punished by Miss Scatcherd. Mr Lloyd spoke highly of him and my name was cleared. After a while, I was promoted to a higher class.

The hardships lessened in Lowood now. Spring was here and my feet started to heal. We could now play outside. On Thursdays, we took walks outside. It was May, and there was brilliant sunshine. Many of the students caught the cold. Miss Temple was always stationed at the sick bay. Some of the kids died in their homes. I started hanging out with a girl named Mary Ann Wilson. I could never forget Helen at all times. However, Helen was ill at the moment. She was all wrapped up when I visited her. Helen was not doing well and would pass on soon. I desperately wanted to visit her in her room. I wanted to see her last moments. I embraced her and teared profusely. She would be going to God. She loved God and believed that God loved her as well. I didn’t know whether heaven existed. The next morning, I woke up and the nurse brought me back to my crib. Helen was dead.

When you hear that I am dead, you must be sure and not grieve: there is nothing to grieve about. We all must die one day…my mind is at rest…By dying young, I shall escape great sufferings. I had not qualities or talents to make my way very well in the world: I should have been continually at fault. – Helen Burns

This is not a regular autobiography and I am 18 now. People started investigating as to the cause of the typhus fever. New regimes were held and the place was cleaned. Now, he had an office of inspector. The school became a noble institution. I had an excellent education. I was at the school for a total of 8 years. Miss Temple was good to me but she left after marrying a clergyman. I was still disciplined and subdued. I felt lost once Miss Temple left me. Now, it dawned on me that the real world was fraught with danger and excitement. I looked at the mountains outside. I desired liberty. I wanted to serve elsewhere now. I wanted to get out and look for a new place. Although my brain worked, it could think of nothing. I needed to advertise myself in the Herald. Finally, I got the advertisement written and deposited it at the post office. There was only 1 for me. Miss Gryce was my new companion at Lowood. I read the letter and had to send my references over to Mrs Fairfax, Thornfield. It was a long way from where I resided. Miss Gryce agreed to help me wherever she could. Mr Brocklehurst wanted a referee for Mrs Reed. I would be given leave in a fortnight after Mrs Fairfax was satisfied with the referee. I packed my stuff now. A new phase of my life was awaiting me. Bessie came to visit me and she brought her little boy along. She was married to the coachman and she lived at the ledge now. John Reed was not doing too well and appeared dim. Bessie wanted to see me off and I was very grateful for that. I showed her my drawings and piano ability. Later, we bade our goodbyes.

I travelled 16 hours to Millcote town. No one welcomed me when I arrived. I was throbbing with fear. A man finally took my luggage and we on our way to Thornfield. I hope Mrs Fairfax wasn’t a second Mrs Reed. The house was very grand indeed. There was an old lady in the house who was knitting. Leah was the servant in the house. Miss Varens was my future pupil, but who was not related to Mrs Fairfax. John and his wife also stayed in the hall. She showed me my room. My room was of a modern type and I liked it. I slept well that night. The house was grand and majestic. I dressed well in order to impress. I didn’t really liked how I looked. There were pictures on the wall. I admitted I liked the place. Mr Rochester was in charge here. He was the owner of Thornfield. Mrs Fairfax was the housekeeper and manager of the place. Later, I saw the kid, Adela, who I was going to teach. Thankfully, I could speak French and could understand Adela. Sophie was her nurse who understood French as well. Adela was obviously very close to Sophie. Later, I heard her sing. After which, we recited some poetry for me as well. She used to live with her mum. Mr Rochester was always nice to Adela in the past. There were many forms of entertainment, including a cabinet piano. The dining room was extremely pretty. Apparently, Mr Rochester was a well respected man around. He was a peculiar man who travelled a lot but his character was difficult to read. Mrs Fairfax didn’t believe in ghosts. I headed up to explore the attic with her now. The attic was empty and I had a good view of the surroundings from up there. Later, I heard some laughter but didn’t see anyone. There was someone in the door apparently. Mrs Fairfax dismissed it and thought that it was one of the servants. She was Grace and then she came out. Later, we all adjourned for dinner.

It is thoughtless to condemn women, or laugh at them, if they seek to do more or learn more than custom has pronounced necessary for their sex. – Jane Eyre

Mrs Fairfax was a kind woman with average intelligence. Adela became very teachable as well. I believed in the good of mankind in general. Women of my time were supposedly to act calm and stagnate. Grace Poole had a very unusual laughter. She was a person of a few words. One day, I offered Mrs Fairfax to deliver a letter. I walked a mile from Thornfield. There was a horse coming. The man and the horse tumbled after they slipped on the ice sheet. I honestly thought the man was hurt. He had a sprain but didn’t need my help. I wanted to see if he could mount the horse before I left him alone. We started chatting now and he knew about Thornfield. Finally I managed to help him up. Strangely, I didn’t fear him at all. This moment was life changing as I managed to help someone. It was a masculine thing to do to help that man. I dropped off the letter and walked home. It was frightening to head back to Thornfield alone in the dark. I saw a dog in the house. Later, it was made known that Mr Rochester and his dog had arrived. Mr Rochester was the guy who fell from the horse.

Mr Rochester came to attend to some business matters. Thornfield was a changed place. Adele was not attentive today as she wanted to see Mr Rochester. Later, Mr Rochester invited me and Adele for tea. It was quite a formal occasion. I recognized him from his fall yesterday. He didn’t seem interested in looking at us. He neither spoke nor moved. He was angry at me for Adele was trying to demand presents from him. Now, he took me aside and started to question me. I admitted that my parents had passed on and I had no other kinsfolk. He blamed me for his sprain from his fall. I admitted I disliked Mr Brocklehurst. He wanted to play a tune at the piano. Later, I brought him my art work. I drew the subjects from memory. He continued to ask me about the paintings. Although it looked good, I was not happy with the paintings. Finally I was allowed to retire from his room. He was a very changeful and abrupt man. Mr Rochester had his own family troubles too. He lost his elder brother 9 years ago and inherited the property. Mrs Fairfax didn’t want to reveal more about his past. Later, I simply dropped the subject.

I don’t think, Mr Rochester, you have a right to command me, merely because you are older than I, or because you have seen more of the world than I have; your claim to superiority depends on the use you have made of your time and experience. – Jane Eyre

I hardly saw Mr Rochester again for the next few days. He had swift changes in mood. He gave Adele a task to do. He ordered me to sit near to him now. We were in the dining room. His mood seems to be a little more jovial now. He asked me whether I was handsome and I replied him with a ‘no’. Now, he probed further. He asked me whether he was capable of being re-transformed. He could tell I was puzzled. Mr Rochester had a confident persona. Now, he wanted to learn more about me. He constantly tried to read my body language. He found my answers peculiar and different from other girls my age. Now, he envied my peace of mind and clean conscience. In the past, he was a commonplace sinner. To him, having feelings of remorse isn’t good. He wanted to get the most pleasure out of life, whatever its costs and the means. Basically the conversation was about how he was not good as he should be and that he regretted his imperfections. His language was enigmatical but I wasn’t afraid of him. He thought that over time, I would grow to be more natural with him. Adele entered and she was dressed in a rose-coloured satin now.

Mr Rochester explained how he knew Adele. She was the daughter of a French opera-dancer. He offered prestige and fine attention to Celine. However, a hatted man headed to the hotel with Celine and Mr Rochester felt jealous. We were walking the avenue now. He was indeed jealous and found it odd that he was confiding in me now. I could tell he liked conversing with me now. He saw the other man he was competing with and he was deeply pissed and upset. Their conversation was frivolous as well. I told Celine to vacate the hotel immediately. However, they had Adele as a kid and I took her in. She was parentless in a way too. Now, I started to review what Mr Rochester had told me. Over the past few weeks, he grew closer to me and often greeted me with a smile. I liked to listen to him as well and was drawn in by his cordial nature. However, there were times when he was imperious as well. Now, I started feeling better about life in general. Although he had bad moods, I believed that they were because of fate in the past. He never really liked Thornfield. I didn’t sleep well that night and seemed to hear demoniac laughter at the chamber door. Something gurgled and moaned. Later, late in the night, I headed to Mrs Fairfax. I realized the house was on fire. I quickly shook Mr Rochester out of bed. I tried my best to put out the fire. Mr Rochester woke up and was shocked by what happened. He listened gravely to my tale but did not speak immediately. He said he needed to visit the second storey and didn’t want me to move. He dismissed the laughter as being that from Grace Poole. He wanted me to keep everything a secret. Now, Mr Rochester expressed his gratitude that I saved his life. I could not sleep well after retiring to bed that night.

And was Mr. Rochester now ugly in my eyes? No, reader: gratitude, and many associations, all pleasurable and genial, made his face the object I best liked to see, his presence in a room was more cheering than the brightest fire. – Jane Eyre

I had the impression he would visit today. Later I saw Grace Poole sitting on a chair. She was intent on sewing. She didn’t seem like someone who had just attempted murder. Even Mrs Fairfax didn’t wake up. I told Grace Poole that I heard a strange laughter. I was not dreaming. I told her I would bolt the door before I go to bed. Later, the cook appeared. It was time for dinner. Mrs Fairfax was looking for me. Why didn’t master punish her for it? I had grown up now and had more hopes and enjoyments than when I was younger. I waited for Mrs Fairfax to appear. Apparently, Mr Rochester headed to Mr Eshton’s place. He would be expected there for a week or so. He would be surrounded by beautiful women at the party. Miss Ingram was like a queen. I also learnt that Mr Rochester could sing too. Mr Rochester was nearly 40 while the lady was only 25. I started to feel jealous since I guessed that he liked Miss Ingram. Later, I sketched Blanche Ingram and my own portrait.

A week passed and there was no news of Mr Rochester. It was very abrupt how he left. I was disappointed. I started talking to myself and told myself that I shouldn’t expect anything from him apart from the salary he provided. Now, I contemplated leaving Thornfield too. One day, he mailed a letter and Mrs Fairfax opened it. He would be arriving in 3 days time. All of us had to clean the house to prepare for the arrival of him and some guests. The strange thing was that no one observed Grace Poole. Apparently, Grace got a good wage for doing very little. I knew there was a mystery around this place. There were 2 carriages carried by horses that came. There were 2 gentlemen, a lady and Mr Rochester. It was Miss Ingram. I kept Adela entertained. There was a lady singing while playing the piano. Later, I carried Adele off to her bed. The party continued to visit the neighbourhood the next day. I could see from afar that Mr Rochester admired Ingram. I was invited to join everyone for dinner tonight. Adele would be attending the dinner as well. Firstly, there was Mrs Eshton and two of her daughters. Lady Lynn was a large and stout person. Mrs Colonel Dent was more lady-like. Lady Ingram and her daughters, Blanche and Mary were also present. Mary didn’t have much to say and was milder than Blanche. Now the men all came in. I appeared to be inconspicuous and continued on my knitting. I had not intended to love Mr Rochester. I was impressed by his demeanour. Mr Rochester never once looked at me. Blanche had bad experiences with governesses. To them, they were a nuisance. Later, the subject was changed. Miss Ingram started playing on the piano. Finally, after the dinner, I came face to face with Mr Rochester. He asked me whether I was depressed. I denied it. He took me that I needed to look happier.

I feel akin to him – I understand the language of his countenance and movements: though rank and wealth sever us widely, I have something in my brain and heart, in my blood and nerves, that assimilates me mentally to him. – Jane Eyre

Merry Days were back at Thornfield. He asked me whether I wanted to play charades one day with the ladies. I declined. Mr Rochester pretended to marry Miss Ingram in the game. The ladies didn’t like to look at me. However much he liked Miss Ingram, I could not unlove him. I was not jealous as I found Miss Ingram too showy and not genuine. She didn’t have an opinion of her own. She did not manage to charm Mr Rochester and I didn’t think highly of her. She often failed with her advances and it was pitiful. It was not true affection, from the looks of it. They only liked each other because of their social class and that it was a norm for them to fall in love. A stranger came to visit the premises. I observed his behavior and demeanour before concluding that I preferred Mr Rochester. He was Mr Mason and was Mr Rochester’s old friend. Miss Ingram introduced a fortune teller to everyone. I followed the pack and was a little excited.

Sibyl was the fortune teller. She was reading a prayer book. She looked odd. I wanted my fortune to be read. She read that I was cold sick and silly. I didn’t think they were true and they certainly didn’t befit my situation. Now she wanted to read my palm. I wanted to save enough money to start a school for myself. I admitted I didn’t think well of the gentlemen in the hall. She proclaimed that Mr Rochester was popular among the ladies. I told her that Mr Rochester would marry Miss Ingram. She could not read my fortune yet. She read that I was sad from loneliness. She read that I was independent and could fend for myself. Later, Mr Rochester emerged. We started talking now. He feigned to be the fortune teller and wanted to catch me unaware. When I told him about a Mr Mason who came to visit, he was shocked. He looked troubled. He wanted me to fetch a glass of wine now. Now, he wanted to call for Mr Mason to enter the library. Later I overheard Mr Rochester saying ‘Mason, this is your room’. I soon fell asleep.

Later, I heard a shrilly cry in the middle of the night. Later it died. It came out of the third storey. Later I heard a struggle and ‘Help, help, help!’ I immediately went to look for Rochester. Everyone was aroused. Finally, Mr Rochester appeared. The ladies wanted to know what happened. He claimed that a servant had a nightmare. He calmed everyone else down. It was clear that it was not a servant’s dream. However, no sound emerged after and there was stillness. Later, Mr Rochester called for me. I was told to get volatile salts and a sponge. Finally he opened the door on the third storey. There was a snarling sound. There was a shout of laughter. It was Mr Mason and his arm was soaked in blood. My job was to sponge Mr Mason for about 2 hours and to wake him up using the salts if necessary. He didn’t want me to talk to Mr Mason at all. I was fearful. Now, I wondered what mysteries this house held. What creature could utter like a demon? How did Mr Mason get hurt? The patient continued moaning in pain. A while later, Mr Rochester entered with the surgeon. Apparently, Grace Poole attacked him. The wound was done with teeth and not a knife. Thankfully Mr Mason appeared alright. I was ordered to get some clean clothes for Mr Mason. Mr Mason was ordered to drink some medicine too. Mr Mason would be driven off to Carter’s house. It was day again and everything was peaceful again. Grace Poole would still stay with us. He sort of confided in me on his difficult past and said he wanted to start anew. Mr Rochester wanted me to accompany him the night before his wedding with Miss Ingram. Mason was gone.

Presentiments, sympathies and signs are weird things altogether. I often had bad dreams and had difficulty sleeping. The crying noise was spooky. Later, a man was looking for me in the house. He was Leaven, the coachman with Mrs Reed when I was at Gateshead. He was married to Bessie now and they were happy. However, John Reed passed away. He ruined his health and his estate and was even jailed before. Apparently, he committed suicide. Mrs Reed suffered a stroke from the whole shock of knowing the incident. Mrs Reed was feeling better and wanted to see me. I went to look for Mr Rochester so I could apply for leave. Ingram saw me and once again, she was very cold towards me. Mr Reed was my mum’s brother. Mr Rochester agreed and gave me some additional money for my trip. He wanted to take a portion of the money back after I told him I would advertise for Adela to go to school. He didn’t want me to advertise at all. I had another request for him and that was out of respect for his bride, Adela and I would be safe out of the house on his wedding day. I would at Gateshead for a week. I met Bessie and her family in the residence. Bessie was still a fine lady and I respected her. The wounds of the past and resentment had healed. The house was in order and nothing seemed to have changed. Eliza and Georgiana were present as well. I often shrank from arrogance and hated those who were acting like so. Eliza and Georgiana started acting all condescending. Mrs Reed was still stern. I called her ‘aunt’ now. However, she treated me coldly and still thought that I was bad. I felt hurt inside. She wished that I had died at Lowood when the fever spread in the school. She admitted she disliked my mother and disliked me as a toddler. Mrs Reed was constantly lethargic or delirious and it was difficult talking to her. I started drawing in my free time in the room. One day, I started drawing a portrait of Mr Rochester. Eliza and Georgiana didn’t realize it. Later, I offered to draw their portraits and we managed to engage in more engaging conversations. She never once mentioned about her family and the talk was all about herself. Eliza allotted her time into hour blocks. She admitted that if Mrs Reed passed on, she would inherit her share and then seek to pursue habits without disturbance from anyone. Georgiana and Eliza had little in common. Eliza didn’t think highly of her sis as she did not use her time wisely and liked receiving attention from men and didn’t have a mind of her own. Georgiana claimed that her sister was selfish. Suddenly, I thought about Helen Burns again. I went to talk to Mrs Reed again. She had trouble recognizing me again. Later, she instructed me to read a letter which was actually written by John Eyre, my uncle. He wanted to adopt me and the letter was dated 3 years ago. Mrs Reed didn’t inform me about it as she hated me. Mrs Reed was deeply upset by how I berated her in the past and she couldn’t forget it. She constantly thought I had a bad disposition. I couldn’t change her mind. She still hated me. Later that night, she died. Neither Eliza nor I wept a tear at her death.

It is a happy thing that time quells the longings of vengeance and hushes the promptings of rage and aversion. – Jane Eyre

Love me, then, or hate me, as you will. You have my full and free forgiveness: ask now for God’s, and be at peace. – Jane Eyre

For Part 2, click here.

Jane Eyre


One thought on “Jane Eyre by Charlotte Bronte (Part 1)

  1. Pingback: Jane Eyre by Charlotte Bronte (Part 2) | Book & Quote Monster

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