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Quotes

Quote #4

Tom was about to take refuge in a lie, when he saw two long tails of yellow hair hanging down a back that he recognized by the electric sympathy of love; and by that form was the only vacant place on the girls' side of the school-house. He instantly said:

"I stopped to talk with Huckleberry Finn!" (6.118-9)

Here, Tom demonstrates that even telling the truth can be a form of manipulation.

Quote #5

Now Tom began to scrawl something on the slate, hiding the words from the girl. But she was not backward this time. She begged to see. Tom said:

"Oh, it ain't anything."

"Yes it is."

"No it ain't. You don't want to see." (6.143-6)

Tom's tricks aren't all first-class; sometimes he simply resorts to classic ruses to get what he wants.

Quote #6

Then he [Injun Joe] put the fatal knife in Potter's open right hand, and sat down on the dismantled coffin. Three -- four -- five minutes passed, and then Potter began to stir and moan. His hand closed upon the knife; he raised it, glanced at it, and let it fall, with a shudder. Then he sat up, pushing the body from him, and gazed at it, and then around him, confusedly. His eyes met Joe's. (9.53)

Though Joe's crime is in an entirely different league from Tom's little ploys, the same principles of trickery and cunning still apply.

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