When I awoke this morning I was feeling very happy knowing that in just acouple of hours I would be marrying the man I love. I did not expect today to turn out like it did. After I awoke I was almost immediately interrupted by Sophie. She came at seven to help me dress, I knew straight away that Mr Rochester had sent her up to see what was delaying me. I couldn’t look in the mirror, I was far too scared but Sophie convinced me to and I did! I remember thinking ‘Is that really me? ‘ I looked so incredibly different. I was called by Mr Rochester and so made my way downstairs and was met at the foot by my soon to be husband.
I realised then that he was in a hurry as he called me a “Lingerer” and said “My brain is on fire with impatience; and you tarry so long! “. I could not understand why he was in such a rush to get to the church. We made our way into the dining room where he told me I looked as “fair as a lily, and not only the pride of his life, but the desire of his eyes”. I felt so special when he said this and knew that today was going to be the greatest day of all my life. He gave me but 10 minutes to eat my breakfast, then we were met outside by one of his lately hired servants.
After they had spoke I was called by Mr Rochester, he held my hand so tight that it felt like an iron was pressing down on it. I had noticed that there had been no bridesmaids, no groomsmen and no relatives. As we passed I noticed Mrs Fairfax stood in the hall but before I could say one word to her I was hurried along and could hardly follow. We arrived at the churchyard wicket and stopped. Mr Rochester saw I was out of breath and asked me “Am I cruel in my love? Delay an instant: lean on me, Jane” so I did as I was told. We walked into the church.
I remember two figures of strangers, straying amongst the low hillocks. At the time I had thought nothing of it but now I realise what a fool I was. We were inside the church and I remember seeing the priest and the two figures from outside who had now moved into a remote corner and seemed to be admiring the church. The service began. I thought of how lucky I was to have finally found true love and to be marrying the man I loved. Then the custom question came where the priest asked if anyone knew why either of us could not be married then to speak now.
Ofcourse you don’t expect anyone to answer when that is asked but suddenly a distinct and near voice told us that “the marriage can not go on”. I felt Mr Rochester move slightly, almost as if an Earthquake had rolled under his feet. He did not turn his head nor move his eyes and told the priest to “proceed”. He did not, and asked the strangers what was going on. Mr Rochester stood stubborn and rigid, he made no movement but to possess my hand. His hand was so hot and he had such a strong grasp, almost as if he would never let go and did not intend to.
The speaker came forward and told us that Mr Rochester had a living wife. I wanted to let go of him and ask what was going on but could not speak. I looked up at him and he looked back at me. His face had been like “colourless rock and he had disavowed nothing”. The man went on to say that Mr Rochester had married Bertha Antionetta Mason and was living now. I felt hot and clammy and felt like I might have fainted. How could Mr Rochester do this and not tell me? I was going to marry him and he kept this from me. The second figure had moved forward by now and I could see that it was Mr Mason.
I could tell that Mr Rochester was going to explode with anger, he told the two men to follow him and he would show them his “so called wife! ” Mr Rochester still holding me tightly led the men out of the church. Back at Thornfield we rushed straight to the top floor where Mason had been hurt and I had comforted him. Mr Rochester opened the door, walked through a room and opened another door that had been covered with some fabric. In the room beyond was Bertha Mason, who I had believed to be Grace Poole. She was disgusting, almost like an animal more than a human being.
On all fours she growled like a wolf and had thick, dark hair which covered her face. I stepped away as she jumped at Mr Rochester, he wrestled her and she hit him. I knew he would not hit her back as he was a good man and would never hit a woman. He and Grace Poole managed to sustain her with some rope as she fell to the floor. I thought to myself, how could Mr Rochester be married to this animal, she couldn’t even speak let alone be married. I could not understand Mr Rochester, I trusted him so and told him all my darkest secrets and here he was, standing there, with his wife which I knew nothing of.
To commit bigomy is a sin and I was so angry towards him but I also wanted to comfort him as I could see he was troubled. Everyone stood shocked and still except for Mr Rochester who came towards us. He held my waist tightly and asked the men “can you blame me? ” I felt he was holding my waist for support and sympathy but I had none. I still cannot get over the fact he kept such a big secret from me. Everyone withdrew from the room except Mr Rochester. I went straight to my bedroom to have a think about what I was going to do.
Still shocked and hurt I lay on my bed thinking about what I was going to do. I had packed my things but was starting to have second thoughts. I was in my room for hours battling with my feelings, I was feeling unwell so made my way downstairs. I left my room and descended to the hall where I was met by Mr Rochester. The next thing I remember was falling and then waking up in Mr Rochester’s arms acouple of seconds later. I must have fainted from all the emotions of the day, lack of food and water. I could not take it all in at once. He gave me some wine and we spoke about the day.
He told me that “he never meant to wound me thus”. He was warm and kind and then leaned in to kiss me but I moved away. How could I kiss him knowing that he was already married. I could never look at him in the same way again. He was angry by this and asked me if I just “won’t kiss the husband of Bertha Mason? You consider my arms filled, and my embraces appropriate? ” I told him there was “no room nor claim for me” and that is exactly how I felt. We spoke for a very long time, him telling me to stay and part of me wanting too but I knew I couldn’t.
He told me “you must have a strange opinion of me: you must regard me as a plotting profligate – a base and low rake who has been simulating disinterested love in order to draw you into a snare deliberately laid, and strip you of honour, and rob you of self-respect”. This was neither true nor anywhere near the truth. He hurt me with a lot of things that he said but I tried to take no notice of him. He had broken my heart and was now saying even more hurtful things to me! I knew I could not live with him after all of my future plans had been buried along with the marriage. I could see absolutely no future with him.
I could not talk to him about my pain and feelings as he seemed like a different person now. The only person I could turn to was god and so I made the painful decision and left and here I am. In the coach, I am heading as far as my money will take me and may try to find my uncle. I still love Mr Rochester and miss him dearly but I am also very angry with him and even the thought of Thornfield makes me feel sick with sadness and anger. I’m sure I will see Mr Rochester again, in the very near future but for now, I plan to get as far away from him and Thornfield as possible.