The Master wakes up after Pamela and her father have already been up and about, admitting that he was up late reading Pamela’s letters. [Ariel says: Nothing says “written before Harry Potter” than staying up all night to read Pamela’s letters.] This could be either cute or obsessive, really, but since the letters are mostly “HELP I’VE BEEN KIDNAPPED”, probably the latter. The Master seems to have finally gotten to the part where Mrs. Jewkes hit Pamela, which he found troublesome.
“She had the insolence to strike my girl, I find.”
“Sir,” said I, “I was a little provoking”
And we can check the “no, I deserved it!” check-box of the abusive relationship now. By proxy, but still. [Ariel says: I’m a little surprised Pamela didn’t go the “Ohhh what I meant to write was that I’d tripped down the stairs” route.]
Pamela’s father wants to go home and tell Pamela’s mom the good (?) news, and in a hilariously “have you been paying any goddamn attention at all?” moment, the Master refuses to let him leave yet. Just when you thought this book couldn’t get more repetitive. The Master argues that he should stay, on account of the wedding. Which he admits can’t even happen for a few days, since they haven’t gotten the marriage license yet, but logic has never been an actual impediment towards things happening in this book. [Ariel says: Seriously, does the Master have to kidnap everyone? Even Gideon Cross let Eva’s dad go back home to California, no questions asked. And we all know how sexy Eva’s dad is!]
So, I hate to tell you guys this, because I’m certain you’re just all flavours of bored with Pamela by now, but today’s post has a lot people trying on clothing.
Pamela Tries On Clothing!
Pamela is thrilled to get to wear the fancy clothing that the Master has given to her. Yes, the same fancy clothing she refused to accept from him previously, because she was insulted that he thought she would trade her virtue for some fancy clothing. Evidently this is okay now. [Ariel says: But fancy clothes, Matt! Fancy clothes!]
Pamela’s Dad Tries on Clothing!
Pamela’s dad, of course, has no appropriately not-shitty clothing for the wedding, but conveniently he’s roughly the same size as the Master, who offers to lend him some of his least-good clothes, because people were just really into their social classes back then. But just in case you were thinking, “hm, this scene doesn’t seem creepy enough for Pamela“, well, Pamela‘s got yo’ back!
“And so,” said [the Master to Pamela], pleasantly, “Don’t you pretend to come near us, till I call for you; for you must not yet see how men dress and undress themselves.”
ACTUAL LINE OF DIALOGUE. The Master tells Pamela to not be too tempted to walk in on her dad changing, because she isn’t allowed to see a naked man until she’s married, in front of her dad. [Ariel says: See my link above to the Crossfire equivalent.]
In “Other Things That Are Weird About Pamela“, Mrs. Jewkes notices that she is still referring to her fiance as “my master”.
“You must alter your style, madam,” said she. “It must not be master now, sure!”
“Oh,” returned I, “This is a language I shall never forget. He shall always be my master, and I shall think myself more and more his servant.”
Because this book really wants us to take Jacob Mr. Williams as a serious source of unresolved conflict, Pamela and the Master run into him (again), the Master comments on how awkward things are between them (again), and the Master and Mr. Williams talk about “Haha, we were both going for the same girl at one point! THIS IS SO NOT AWKWARD LET’S TALK ABOUT THIS SOME MORE.” (again). [Ariel says: This sounds like a scene that would play out in every frat house across America except the words “bro” and “dude” would play a pivotal role in the conversation.” There’s an art to bro-speak. A well-placed “dude” can really help drive your point home.]
“I think I could have preferred, with her, any condition that could have befallen me, had I considered only myself.”
You know what’s a conversation I overhear all the time? People talking with their friends about how they almost got with their significant others. Wait, NOBODY DOES THIS.
“But, sir, I was very far from having any encouragement to expect her favour.”
Then WHY KEEP BRINGING THIS UP? Don’t worry, though. They’re so cool that the Master asks Mr. Williams to officiate the wedding. THEY’RE JUST THAT TOTALLY COOL.
The Master gives Pamela permission to have a friend.
“Pamela, look upon yourself at liberty to number Mr. Williams in the list of your friends.”
How generous, how noble, was this!”
Wanna know what’s really fucked up? This is more progressive than Fifty Shades of Grey. Think about how many male friends Christian allowed Ana to hang out with. [Ariel says: Wait, does that make the Crossfire series more progressive in this way too given Eva and Cary’s unfortunate friendship?]
So a thing that’s been happening in the background that I haven’t mentioned is that the chapel in the Master’s house hadn’t been used in such a long time that it was actually being used to store firewood, and Pamela insisted on it being cleaned and used for its proper purpose. Cool, now you’re all caught up on that subplot. [Ariel says: This sounds like the perfect plot for a reality tv program as I’m sure the number of people with backyard chapels just waiting to be renovated is astronomical.]
Anyway, they finally have a service in the church, at which both Mr. Williams and Pamela’s dad do part of the service. There is nothing to say about it, but that certainly doesn’t stop Pamela, who literally just copies the Bible verses her father reads verbatim, in case whoever is supposed to ever read these letters forgets what the Bible is, I guess.
Speaking of Pamela writing about the Bible, the Master found a very interesting part of Pamela’s letters: her rewriting of the 137th Psalm to be about herself. You may recall we made fun of this, as it is a perfectly normal thing for people to do, but what the Master does is worse (amazingly), because he reads it out loud to his entire dinner party of upper class lords and ladies, while Pamela embarrassingly pleads he stop. Pamela just out-BBGT’ed BBGT.
“She turned it more to her own supposed case; and believing Mrs. Jewkes had a design against her honor and looking upon her as her jailer, she thus gives her version of this psalm.”
The Master has Mr. Williams read the original Bible stanza before he reads Pamela’s corresponding Mary Sue fanfiction rewrite of the Psalm, which is probably the only time in my life I’ll ever use the words “Mary Sue fanfiction rewrite of the Psalm” in that order. [Ariel says: I don’t know if you know this, but bible fanfiction is actually a real thing. I’m not brave enough to wade through that, although I did see the first post on there is categorised as “humor”. I feel like that is just begging for people to attack you on the internet.]
As you can imagine, it’s super embarrassing.
“Good sir,” said I, “oblige me; don’t read further: pray don’t!”
“O pray, madam,” said Mr. Williams, “Let me beg to have the rest read; for I long to know whom you make the Sons of Edom, and how you turn the Psalmist’s execrations against the insulting Babylonians.”
Whatever floats your boat, Mr. Williams.
Interestingly, this scene offers a good PRO WRITING TIP: Don’t make one of your characters a great writer if you are not a great writer. Especially if you’re going to go with a really niche talent, like, say, adaptation of Biblical verse.
Ev’n so shalt thou, O wicked one!
At length to shame be brought;
And happy shall all those be call’d
That my deliv’rance wrought.
That was Mr. Williams reading the actual Bible verse, and here is the Master reading Pamela’s adaptation, which is about as close to the Psalm she’s supposedly adapting as Hamlet is to Sharknado:
Yes, blessed shall the man be call’d
That shame thee of thy evil,
And saves me from thy vile attempts,
And thee, too, from the devil.
“Evil” and “devil” don’t even rhyme, Pamela.