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Chapter 31 Notes from For Whom the Bell Tolls

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For Whom the Bell Tolls Chapter 31

Maria is ashamed that she has pain and cannot make love. He understands. She says she is so afraid for him that she does not think of herself. She wants to learn about his work but he will not tell her about it. He knows it is only a dream, but talks to her about how they will go to Madrid and he will get her papers and buy her clothes. She says she will serve him well, and is ashamed of her soreness and her cropped hair. He reassures her that she is beautiful, and that he will marry her.

They talk about how in Madrid she can get a new hairdo like the movie star Greta Garbo, and he tells her of a beautiful apartment they will get. He says that before they met, all he thought of was winning the war. She tells him Pilar has started teaching her to be a good wife, and that she can tell him what happened to her and he will understand. She tells him so he will know that she never submitted to any of them. Before the guardia civil shot her father, he said long live the Republic, and before her mother was shot, she said long live my husband the Mayor. Maria hoped that they would shoot her so she could say long live the Republic and my parents, but instead they tied all the women up and led them to the square. She was identified as the Mayor's daughter, and two men made her sit in a barber's chair and shaved her head and wrote on her forehead. Her heart was frozen with grief for her parents and knew what was happening to her was nothing. One man said "next," and they dragged her outside, where she saw her best friend being taken in. They took her to her father's office and raped her many times.

Robert Jordan holds her close and is filled with hate, and tells her he cannot bear to hear more. She says she would like to kill many Falangists. She fears he will not marry her, but she must tell him that it is possible that she will not be able to carry children. Robert Jordan says he does not wish to bring a son or daughter into the world, the way it is now. She wants to have children so they can fight fascists. He calls her little rabbit and tells her he loves her and she is his wife. He cannot fall asleep. He knows that they have done dreadful things to the fascists because they did not know better, but what those men did to Maria they did deliberately. They come from a long line of Spanish chivalry, sons of bitches, and he cites the conquistadors and others, up through Pablo. Forgiveness is a Christian idea, he thinks, and Spain never was a Christian country. The Church is in the government, which was always rotten, so people grew away from the Church. If they blow the bridge tomorrow, it does not matter if they die. If he has truly lived life in three days, he would have spent this last night differently, but last moves are never good. He thinks, though, of the last words of Maria's mother, and thinks that they were good. He kisses her and says that he will marry her, and that he is proud of her family.

Topic Tracking: Women 21
Topic Tracking: Loyalty 18
Topic Tracking: Foreigners 15
Topic Tracking: Bravery 17

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