Chapters 13 and 14
Life at Thornfield changes through Mr. Rochester’s presence.
The servants seem to have more purpose in their work and Jane is ousted from the library, and has to make alternative arrangements for a classroom.
Mr. Rochester continues in his cantankerous mood, but is overly interested
in Jane, wishing to know her skills in music and any other talents she may have, in particular her artwork, which greatly impresses him.
Ad'le has been anticipating receiving a present from Mr. Rochester, and
after a few days they are summoned and Ad'le receives a box of presents.
Ad'le tries on her new dress, stockings and sandals, and as she dances about, Rochester describes her as a “French floweret” and she reminds him of her mother.
Rochester passes comment on Jane’s behavior saying that she is prim and too
reserved and asks her to comment on his looks. Jane attempts to keep her opinion to herself, and fearing that Rochester may be under the influence of wine, she selects her words carefully.
It is evident that Rochester is the guiding force in Thornfield, which comes
to life when he reappears from his travels.
The reader is also aware that he has more than a passing interest in Jane,
who after all is just another servant in the household. Their conversation soon becomes quite personal and he says to her, “Do you think me handsome?”
After some deliberation she responds, “No sir” to which he replies, “There is something singular about you '' When one asks you a question, or makes a remark to which you are obliged to reply, you wrap it out '' which, if not blunt, is at least brusque. What do you mean by it?” Jane replies by saying that beauty is of little consequence. Rochester goes on to excuse his rugged features by saying that Lady Fortune has not always looked kindly on him. “She has even kneaded me with her knuckles and now I flatter myself I am as hard and tough as an India rubber ball '' does that leave hope for me?”
Jane cannot help but look puzzled, as she cannot understand this enigma of a
Jane provides Rochester with a challenging conversation which he has not been able to share with anyone
else, and from the descriptions provided by Bront', the attraction that both has for each other is not physical but more intellectual for we know that Rochester has a craggy appearance and Jane is plain, having a
small frame and wearing uncomplimentary clothes.