>I haven’t had a literary dream lately. Apparently this time I was Dorothea in Middlemarch, and the super-fine Will Ladislaw and I were sitting in the parlor of my mansion, hashing out whether we should marry or not.
As you’ll remember, my…I mean Dorothea’s husband, the uber-icky Mr. Causabon, died and left her a substantial fortune. He also left instructions in his will that if Dorothea should marry Ladislaw, she’d lose the whole inheritance. Although Ladislaw was Mr. Causabon’s cousin, Mr. Causabon had a lot of antipathy towards him, because manymanymany years ago, Ladislaw’s mom ran off with a Pole and married for love and scandalized the whole family. Deep down though, it was a personality conflict: Ladislaw had one, and Mr. Causabon didn’t.
In this dream, Will Ladislaw’s hand was covering mine as we mutually acknowledged how fond we were of each other. Who wouldn’t be fond of Ladislaw? In looks, he was like a perfect mixture of Mr. Darcy and Heathcliff, except without any temperamental flaws. He was kind, sweet and serious, and very much determined that I should make up my own mind about what to do. He would not pressure me. This was a big decision.
The more we talked, the angrier I got at the late Mr. Causabon: “I really don’t like being told what to do! That really pisses me off that he’s somewhere out there in Eternity, thinking he’s got the whip hand! I’ll marry anyone I want to! He can shove his damn fortune up his corpse-y ass!”
Will Ladislaw refused to join me in badmouthing my late spouse, but he was worried that other people on my estate might overhear what we were discussing, so he invited me back to his rooms. They were a little on the small and dingy side, with shabby but comfortable-looking furniture. He apologized that the surroundings weren’t fit to receive the dearest and most wonderful guest he could ever have. “Don’t worry,” I reassured him. “They look 1000 times better than anything I could rent in Korea, and a Korean landlord wouldn’t even throw in any furniture!”