“ … no one so proper, so capable as Anne.”
In other words, the best, most skilled person to take care of Louisa, is Anne. That’s a great compliment coming from a man who makes life-and-death decisions in the course of a day. Good for you, Freddy.
This is the part of Persuasion that really forced me to look at affable, easy-going Charles Musgrove.
To this point, Charles has been welcoming of Wentworth into the inner circle of the Musgrove clan, pleasant to be around, loyal to his father, and kind to his difficult wife. But here we start to see the mushy middle of a coward in action.
The surgeon has said that Louisa will be fine. That’s all well and good, but let’s face it, this is a time when a lot can go wrong with a diagnosis. This is the Charles’s sister and yet he caves to his whining wife.
A smart man keeps the woman he sleeps with happy. However, the care of an injured person should not be decided by the one who blubbers and makes the most noise.
Someone should take Mary aside and point out that since Anne doesn’t have a sister-in-law’s feelings, she probably the best person to care for Louisa. In later parts of Persuasion, all Mary’s talk of sea-bathing, walking, and going to the library makes me think Lyme was her opportunity to have a vacay to rival the rest going to Bath later in the season. I’m sure Mrs. Harville and her nursery maid had some tales to tell.
This the time for Frederick to step up and use his quarter-deck voice and tell Charles to get his woman in line,* tell Mary to dry her eyes and get her keester in the carriage, and grab Anne for a swift kiss good-bye.
Again, there would be no more story if this happened, but it’s fun to dream.
This is an homage to Episode 8, of Season 5, of The Big Bang Theory, entitled, “The Isolation Permutation.”