Chapter 10 Notes from Tess of the d'Urbervilles

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Tess of the d'Urbervilles Chapter 10

After some time in Tantridge, Tess learns the customs of the workfolk around her, and she begins to join them in their Saturday night dances in the nearby village. She makes it a point to always go with a group so that she is not too vulnerable to trouble walking home alone at night. One Saturday she is running a little late, and she encounters Alec on her way into town for the dance. She doesn't talk to him long because she's looking for the group of people with whom she usually walks home. She finds them at someone's home having a dance in the barn, and they dance the night away as Tess waits for them so that she can go home. Most of the neighbors are drunk and having a great time, so they are reluctant to leave and it gets later and later. Alec shows up at the dance and Tess explains her predicament to him, but she refuses to allow him to accompany her home, claiming it would be rude to leave her "friends" after waiting for them so long.

On the way home with her drunken neighbors, a dark-haired woman, the Queen of Spades, picks a fight with Tess out of the blue. Tess has no idea that the woman had been one of Alec's conquests before Tess arrived. Tess refuses to fight with the woman, and the other women gang up on her. Just as things seem to be getting out of hand, Alec shows up on his horse and offers to take Tess home. She desperately agrees, not knowing the trouble she's gotten herself into. As they ride away, one of the drunken country girls laughs and says, "Out of the frying pan into the fire!" Chapter 10, pg. 66

Topic Tracking: Coincidence 3

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