Elinor Mompellion Quotes in Year of Wonders
“The man who sent it is a well-esteemed physician, and he says it is a remedy much thought of among the Florentine doctors…”
“But what is it?” I asked again.
“It contains a dried toad,” she said. I wept then, even though I knew her intentions were all of the best.
That man was a ship’s barber; he pulled teeth and amputated limbs. He knew nothing of women’s bodies. But you do know. You can do this, Anna. Use your mother-hands.
By gathering and sorting my own feelings so, I was finally able to fashion a scale on which I could weigh my father’s nature and find a balance between my disgust for him and an understanding of him; my guilt in the matter of his death against the debt he owed me for the manner of my life.
I was jealous of them both at once. Of him, because Elinor loved him, and I hungered for a greater share of her love than I could ever hope for. And yet I was jealous of her, too; jealous that she was loved by a man as a woman is meant to be loved.
To me, she had become so many things. So many things a servant has no right or reason to imagine that the person they serve will be. Because of her, I had known the warmth of a motherly concern – the concern that my own mother had not lived to show me. Because of her, I had a teacher and was not ignorant and unlettered still.
In lying with him, I had sought to bring her closer to me. I had tried to become her, in every way that I could. Instead, in taking my pleasure from his body, I had stolen from her – stolen what should have been hers, her wedding night.