Bedtime musings on character in DWJ (F & H)

Ven ven at
Thu Nov 16 19:25:40 EST 2000

Hallie wrote
> Well, yes.  But you could also think of the struggle to live morally 
> as one which is equally never over until one dies.  Which is why I'd 
> go back to my original point and say that I don't understand what is 
> explained about Reg by his father's having been taken.  The desire to 
> get what we want with no cost to ourselves is in all of us surely. 
> Reg would hardly be in any worse moral shape than anyone else just 
> because of his father.

I always thought the cause of Reg's dodgy character lay in his 
upbringing, insofar as that was a consequence of the relationship 
between his father and mother and his father and Laurel. Reg's 
mother was deserted by his father (I think) before his birth. I don't 
think it says but the implication is surely that he had to be married 
to Laurel in order to substitute for the man with the black poached 
eggs for eyes (Ye Gods! the unpleasantness of that description 
strikes anew when typing it). Anyhow that would have made Reg 
illegitimate as well as fatherless, at a time when that was a 
disgrace (and it would have been fairly disgraceful then to have a 
father who deserted your mother too). I think his mother made 
mistakes with him, being too indulgent perhaps. She may have felt 
she should have saved his father and overcompensated out of guilt. 
By the time of F&H I think she has learned from her mistakes and 
come to terms with the past, which is why she is able to be a 
much better granny to Polly than she was a Mother to Reg. I 
suppose Polly is Granny's chance to get things right, which she 
does as far as Polly's upbringing goes but I think she was always 
in two minds about Thomas Lynn.

The relationship between the villagers and Laurel is interesting. Its 
obviously gone on for a long time. Its comparable to the townsfolk 
in Carpe Jugulum, they have allowed themselves to become 
domesticated in return for a touch of glamour. I suppose what they 
get out of it is the art of the doomed talented boys like Thomas and 


You are trapped in that bright moment where you learned your doom.
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