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Seeing me, she roused herself: she made a sort of effort to smile, and framed a few words of congratulations; but the smile expired, and the sentence was abandoned unfinished. She put up her spectacles and pushed her chair back from the table.
“I feel so astonished,” she began, “I hardly know what to say to you, Miss Eyre. I have surely not been dreaming, have I? Sometimes I half fall asleep when I am sitting alone and fancy things that have never happened. It has seemed to me more than once when I have been in a doze, that my dear husband, who died fifteen years since, has come in and sat down beside me; and that I have even heard him call me by my name, Alice, as he used to do. Now, can you tell me whether it is actually true that Mr. Rochester has asked you to marry him? Don’t laugh at me. But I really thought he came in here five minutes ago, and said that in a month you would be his wife.” 
“He has said the same thing to me,” I replied.
“He has! Do you believe him? Have you accepted him?”
She looked at me bewildered.
“I could never have thought it. He is a proud man; all the Rochesters were proud: and his father at least, liked money. He, too, has always been called careful.
He means to marry you?” “He tells me so.”
She surveyed my whole person: in her eyes I read 30 that they had there found no charm powerful enough to solve the enigma.
“It passes me!” she continued; “but no doubt it is true since you say so. How it will answer I cannot tell: I really don’t know. Equality of position and fortune is often advisable in such cases; and there are twenty years of difference in your ages. He might almost be your father.” 
“No, indeed, Mrs. Fairfax!” I exclaimed, nettled; “he is nothing like my father! No one, who saw us 40 together, would suppose it for an instant. Mr. Rochester looks as young, and is as young, as some men at five and twenty.”
“Is it really for love he is going to marry you?” she asked.
I was so hurt by her coldness and skepticism, that the tears rose to my eyes.
“I am sorry to grieve you,” pursued the widow; “but you are so young, and so little acquainted with men, I wished to put you on your guard. It is an old saying that ‘all is not gold that glitters’; and in this case I do fear there will be something found to be different to what either you or I expect.” 
“Why?—am I a monster?” I said: “Is it impossible that Mr. Rochester should have a sincere affection for me?”
“No: you are very well; and much improved of late; and Mr. Rochester, I dare say, is fond of you. I have always noticed that you were a sort of pet of his. There are times when, for your sake, I have been a little uneasy at his marked preference, and have wished to put you on your guard; but I did not like to suggest even the possibility of wrong. I knew such an idea would shock, perhaps offend you; and you were so discreet, and so thoroughly modest and sensible, I hoped you might be trusted to protect yourself. Last night I cannot tell you what I suffered when I sought all over the house, and could find you nowhere, nor the master either; and then, at twelve o’clock, saw you come in with him.
“Well never mind that now,” I interrupted impatiently; “it is enough that all was right.” 
“I hope all will be right in the end,” she said: “but, believe me, you cannot be too careful. Try and keep Mr. Rochester at a distance: distrust yourself as well as him. Gentlemen in his station are not accustomed to marry their governesses.”
1. When Mrs. Fairfax says, “Gentlemen in his station are not accustomed to marry their governesses,” she is expressing her belief that:
A. Mr. Rochester is incapable of loving Miss Eyre.
B. Mr. Rochester will treat Miss Eyre like a governess when they are married.
C. Mr. Rochester may not be sincere about his feeling towards Miss Eyre
D. Mr. Rochester may not really have asked Miss Eyre to marry him.
2. It can be reasonably inferred from the conversation that Mrs. Fairfax believes Miss Eyre will:
F. recognize that Mr. Rochester actually wants to marry Mrs. Fairfax.
G. marry Mr. Rochester much sooner than originally planned.
H. no longer desire to marry Mr. Rochester.
J. potentially regret her decision to agree to marry Mr. Rochester.
3. Mrs. Fairfax’s opinion about Miss Eyre and Mr. Rochester’s relationship can best be exemplified by which of the following quotations from the passage?
A. “Mr. Rochester looks as young, and is as young, as some men at five and twenty.”
B. “How it will answer I cannot tell: I really don’t know.”
C. “He is a proud man; all the Rochesters were proud.”
D. “But I really thought he came in here five minutes ago, and said that in a month you would be his wife.”
4. The phrase “you were so discreet, and so thor- oughly modest and sensible” (lines 36–37) is used by Mrs. Fairfax to:
F. explain why Miss Eyre should not marry Mr. Rochester.
G. explain why it is likely that Mr. Rochester really does not plan on marrying Miss Eyre.
H. explain why Mrs. Fairfax had not discussed Mr. Rochester’s feelings toward Miss Eyre before.
J. insult Miss Eyre and let her know that Mrs. Fairfax was disappointed in her.
5. The passage makes it clear that Miss Eyre and Mr. Rochester:
A. get married.
B. do not really know each other well enough to become engaged.
C. will not live happily because they will be shunned by society.
D. have a relationship that is not typical in their society.
Ref: McGraw Hill
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