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: People see the harm in what excessive candor can do.
: What Jane Austen novels have you read? Tom Townsend
: None. I don't read novels. I prefer good literary criticism. That way you get both the novelists' ideas as well as the critics' thinking. With fiction I can never forget that none of it really happened, that it's all just made up by the author.
: [after Tom disappears with Serena
] Tom's not used to places like this. Maybe he went through one of those stairway doors that lock from the inside. Nick Smith
: He can't get locked in. I used to have to use those doors when people forgot to invite me to their parties.
: Pomfret. Where did you go? Jane Clark
: Farmington. Both of us did. Tom Townsend
: Did you know Serena Slocum there? Jane Clark
: The inevitable question. Tom Townsend
: What? Jane Clark
: All the guys ask that. Serena had an incredible number of boyfriends. At least 20. She could manage it because they were all at different schools and she wrote letters incredibly quickly - three in a single study hall. She became really famous. It's incredible how naive some guys are. How do you know Serena? Audrey Rouget
] Actually, that might give someone the wrong impression. She wrote a lot of guys, but I'm sure she liked some a lot more than others. Jane Clark
: Oh, you think so? I never noticed that. How do you know Serena? Tom Townsend
: I was one of her boyfriends. Jane Clark
: [Taken aback
] Oh! You must be "Pomfret." Your letters were really good. Audrey Rouget
] Mrs. Rouget
: You can't listen to what your younger brother has to say. I can't think of anyone less an authority of female anatomy. Audrey Rouget
: He can see... It's hideous. Mrs. Rouget
: No, it isn't. You're being very subjective. You know, there was a survey of girls your age some years ago and nearly all of them were convinced that either their behinds, or their noses, were grotesquely oversized. And there was no apparent correlation between this conviction and their actual size. Audrey Rouget
: Really? They did a survey of that? Mrs. Rouget
: Yes. Why don't you show me the dress again?
] Tom Townsend
: Did anything happen? Audrey Rouget
: Of course not. Tom Townsend
: You mean you were never interested in Von Sloneker at all?
[pause as Audrey looks ambivalently towards him
] Tom Townsend
: They why did you come out here? Audrey Rouget
: To get a suntan... and the whole thing with the Rat Pack was getting claustrophobic. And Cynthia insisted I come. She's terribly impressed with Rick. Tom Townsend
: It's not something Jane Austin would have done. Audrey Rouget
: No. I suppose Europe is over there.
[points across the ocean
] Tom Townsend
: No. That would be Brazil. Europe is more that way. You're really going back next week? Audrey Rouget
: I think so. Tom Townsend
: What can you study in France that you can't study here? Audrey Rouget
: French. Actually, I was thinking of coming back when this semester ends. Tom Townsend
: I was thinking of going over. Not necessarily to Grenoble, but to France and Italy... though my resources are limited. Audrey Rouget
: There are some awfully cheap airfares these days during the winter season. It seems a shame not to take advantage of them. Tom Townsend
: That's how I feel. Audrey Rouget
: Do you really think I'm flat-chested? Tom Townsend
: I haven't really thought about it. Well, I shouldn't say that. The thing is, you look great... and that's what's important. You don't want to overdo it.