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Japanese Fairy Tales

The Mirror of Matsuyama

by Yei Theodora Ozaki

A husband gives his wife a mirror, and when she is on her deathbed, she gives it to her daughter. The daughter thinks she sees her mother’s soul in it and spends much time staring into it after her father remarries. The stepmother begins resenting the daughter’s relationship with her father and starts to hate her; she thinks the daughter is doing black magic to curse her, and she tells the father of it. The father confronts the daughter, and he finally realizes that the daughter is innocent and is simply still brokenhearted over her mother’s death. The stepmother is moved by the daughter’s story to renounce her hate, and the father, stepmother, and daughter finally become a happy family.


Chapter 17

by Bram Stoker

The Harkers join forces with the others. They share all that they know, and discover more information about Dracula’s connections with the area and plans for the future.

Jane Eyre

Chapter XXIX

by Charlotte Brontë

After she is taken in by the Rivers siblings, Jane spends three days recuperating in bed. On the fourth day, she feels well again and follows the smell of baking bread into the kitchen, where she finds Hannah. Jane criticizes Hannah for judging her unfairly when she asked for help, and Hannah apologizes. Hannah tells the story of Mr. Rivers, the siblings’ father, who lost most of the family fortune in a bad business deal. In turn, Diana and Mary were forced to work as governesses—they are only at Marsh End (or Moor House) now because their father died three weeks ago. Jane then relates some of her own story and admits that Jane Elliott is not her real name. St. John promises to find her a job.

Jane Eyre

Chapter XXI

by Charlotte Brontë

Jane has heard that it is a bad omen to dream of children, and now she has dreams on seven consecutive nights involving babies. She learns that her cousin John Reed has committed suicide, and that her aunt, Mrs. Reed, has suffered a stroke and is nearing death. Jane goes to Gateshead, where she is reunited with Bessie. She also sees her cousins Eliza and Georgiana. Eliza is plain and plans to enter a convent, while Georgiana is as beautiful as ever. Ever since Eliza ruined Georgiana’s hopes of eloping with a young man, the two sisters have not gotten along. Jane tries to patch things up with Mrs. Reed, but the old woman is still full of hostility toward her late husband’s favorite. One day, Mrs. Reed gives Jane a letter from her father’s brother, John Eyre. He declares that he wishes to adopt Jane and bequeath her his fortune. The letter is three years old; out of malice, Mrs. Reed did not forward it to Jane when she received it. In spite of her aunt’s behavior, Jane tries once more to smooth relations with the dying woman. But Mrs. Reed refuses, and, at midnight, she dies.

Main Street

Chapter 32

by Sinclair Lewis

A minor incident at the barn dance has dire consequences for Fern Mullins. Fern, confident she will be fired, resigns and leaves town.