Jane Eyre: Novel Summary: Chapters 13-14
Chapter 13: The next day Mrs. Fairfax comes to tell Jane that Mr. Rochester would like Jane and Adele to have tea with him in the evening, and tells Jane that she should change her frock. Jane changes into a silk black frock instead of the drab black one she usually wears. When Adele and Jane enter for tea, Mr. Rochester does not seem to want to talk to them and keeps silent. Eventually he does talk and tells Jane that he can see improvement in Adele. They talk of Jane's past including Lowood School and her lack of family. He also tells Jane that Adele has shown him some of Jane's drawings, and he wonders if she had done them herself. She says that she had, and goes to get her portfolio when he asks her to. He looks through all of her drawings thoughtfully and asks her questions about them. After the meeting Jane tells Mrs. Fairfax that she finds Mr. Rochester changeful and abrupt, and Mrs. Fairfax alludes to some family problems he has had, but does not elaborate much.
Chapter 14: For the next several days Jane sees little of Mr. Rochester, but then he calls Adele and her to meet with him. He gives Adele the box of presents he had brought for her to keep her occupied. Then he calls Mrs. Fairfax in to talk to Adele so that she will not disturb him. Jane and Mr. Rochester talk, and he asks her if she thinks him handsome. When she replies 'no,' she instantly tries to say she spoke too quickly, but he says that she is no more pretty than he is handsome. They talk for quite a while, and Mr. Rochester tells Jane that he wishes he were a better man, to which she replies that if he tried hard enough he could be someone of whom he would approve. Mr. Rochester also tells Jane that he has only half a liking for Adele because of her roots, and says that he will explain more later.