| Quote #7
My eyes closed. It was never going to stop. We would suffer endlessly, with no time to rest, no time to sleep. (25.47)
Matilda's pain and suffering reaches its highest point here as she cares endlessly for the children. What is the extent of her sacrifice? How do others' suffering require our own sacrifice?
| Quote #8
As word of the frost spread, hundreds of people swarmed into town. The returnees were all well-fed. They called to each other in annoying, bright voices. I wanted to tell them to hush. It felt like they were dancing on a grave with no thought to the suffering they had escaped. Those of us who had remained behind were gaunt and pale. People who were dosed with mercury spat frequently and covered their mouths to hide their blackened teeth.
Eliza reminded me not to be bitter, but it was hard. (27.2-27.3)
Matilda's experience with the fever is juxtaposed with the people who fled to the country. While they are well-fed and happy, she is gaunt, scarred, and forever changed by what she has experienced. Why is Matilda bitter? How would you feel if you had gone through the same ordeal?