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FREE SUMMARY-SOMETHING WICKED THIS WAY COMES
The ladder rungs affixed to the side of the house sadly remind Charles
of his boyhood. The same moment of sadness for Charles, though, is an
epiphany for Will and Jim, as they had not previously realized an adult
might have had the same experiences they have. They beg him to relate
those experiences to him, but he simply leaves it at the fact that he
was the same way. He wants them to feel okay in their late night experiences,
so he starts to offer them permission, but then he knows that permission
would spoil it. He, dutifully, makes sure they’re not out too late, then
leaves it at that. Charles is torn between his duty as a parent and his
memories of boyhood. The fact that he flinches at the start to Will’s
story is proof enough for Will that as enlightened as Charles seems, he
cannot handle the stress of the story itself.
While Charles and Will linger outside, Will can smell the leaves, and
it makes him think of history. He wonders why he, and perhaps also his
father, are the only two people who ever seem to consider history. It’s
obviously time to go to bed, but both Will and his dad are reluctant to
go inside. Finally Will asks if he’s a good person, and if trouble should
ever arise, whether his goodness would save him. Charles says that while
good may not physically save a person, it offers peace of mind. Will then
asks if Charles is a good person. Charles says he tries to be good to
Will and his mom, but after living with himself for a lifetime, the sum
of his goodness seems to come and go. Charles emphasizes that being good
doesn’t imply happiness. The people with the largest smiles have the biggest
evil, while the people who seem unhappy are often good because being good
is difficult. Charles goes on to say that the secret to being good, as
Will probably already knows, is to ignore the temptation, but even that
has its downfall by creating cowardice. Charles explains that he didn’t
marry until he was thirty-nine because he was trying to wait until he
was perfect. He realized all too late that you must make mistakes to increase
your ability to be good. Will, according to Charles, is the product of
a man half-good and a woman half-good thereby making Will all good. Charles
also says that Will is wiser than he will ever be. Will mentions that
he might be able to reveal the entire story to him at breakfast because
he wants him to be happy. Charles starts to cry, and Will says if he could
say anything to make him happy he would. Charles says he’s always been
sad, and the only thing that could make him happy is to be immortal. Will
says that he’ll live forever, and that he shouldn’t go near the carnival.
Charles says he was about to offer Will the same advice, and Will scrambles
up the hidden rungs, and invites Charles to follow him. After some good-natured
teasing, Charles successfully follows. In Will’s bedroom, they sit quietly
together in love for an instant before he leaves and Will goes to bed.
This chapter marks a changing point in the relationship between Charles and Will. It is now clear that Will will do anything to make Charles happy, and Charles feels that happiness is not simply possible. To this point, Will believed that goodness implied happiness, and Charles helps Will see the reality. The end of the chapter helps readers see that the entire experience seems to be drawing Will and Charles closer together.
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Matter, Mindy. "TheBestNotes on Something Wicked This Way Comes".
. 09 May 2017