Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Question of the Week

In When May Follows, Katrina, in a delightfully spontaneous moment of healthy youthful spirits, flings her arms about Raf's neck and 'seals the deal' on their engagement. When he pulls away after a friendly, quick kiss she is chagrined and excuses her exuberance on the grounds that she " carried away--it must be the effect of having sapphires offered to one before lunch."
Okay, fine, well and good. But then Raf continues to be slightly off-putting to Kate from there on out, into their honeymoon and beyond.
I get that he's got a two-fold plan:
  1. Pique her interest. He's gambling that his disinterest will annoy her and make her want to capture his attention.
  2. It's all or nothing for him. Either he kisses her not at all or kisses her good and plenty. He's a bit of a garden spigot that way. On or off.
And he certainly isn't the first Rich Dutch Doctor to take that tack. Poor British Nurses have to fall in love without any help at all most of the time and sometimes The Venerable Betty explicitly has the heroes thinking, "I could make her fall in love with me...but I won't."

Which got me thinking of Charlotte Lucas of Pride and Prejudice. She and Elizabeth are discussing Jane. Charlotte says something to the effect that Jane should show more affection than she feels...because few of us have the courage to be really in love without proper encouragement.

So, that's my question. Is it more than likely that all this cold-shouldering would spur a woman to win a man or dissuade her from even trying?