Richard Brown meets Clara Callaway
For my final project, I decided to have Richard Brown (from The Hours) meet the narrator from The Yellow Wall-Paper, who I named Clara Callaway. He enters at (what we know as) the end of The Yellow-Wallpaper, as Jennie's brother. I tried to make the characters talk like they did in their respective stories as much as I could, though they are from different time periods. Even though they are from different time periods, they both dealt with some of the same issues, which was why I thought it would be interesting for them to meet one another. The beginning of my addition to The Yellow Wall-Paper sums up the end of the original story and then launches into the meeting of Clara and Richard.
I do not know how it happened, but the woman in the wall is out and free! It is such a good feeling! I have peeled away all of the wallpaper that used to keep her in and now I can creep around freely! Sweet freedom, oh how blissful I have now become!
Oh! My husband! How he has fainted right before me! Oh what an inconvenience. He is right in my path of where I creep along the wall. Now I must go over him each time. I do not understand why he has fainted and proposed such a problem for me now. Oh, and now here comes Jennie, running towards me.
"Clara what are you doing? What has happened to John?" Jennie rushes in, acting as if I have lost my mind. Whatever do I tell her? I do not know why John has fainted right before me! And now Jennie has brought in some strange man with her! I do hope he is not another doctor.
Jennie seems very angered at my "actions" she calls them and she has a look on her face as if she has seen a ghost. Perhaps she has seen the woman too! But, when I ask her, she looks even more bewildered and gasps at the wallpaper that I have ripped apart. She cannot understand. I am just very anxious to crawl along the wallpaper like I had been doing before John came to the door. He did not have to open it, but he insisted upon doing so! And then came Jennie to see what happened to John, and with her she brought some other man I have not yet seen before. Why is this happening?
Can they not see that I am busy? I have finally peeled away the wallpaper enough to let the woman free and I do not want anyone getting in my way of things!
Oh, and now she is going to talk to me again. I do not feel like talking to her.
"Clara...this is my brother Richard. I feel as though you two would get along well together. You both seem to...see others that....the rest of us are not fortunate enough to have the talents to see. I am going to care for John and get him a cool cloth. Will you please go with Richard into the drawing room? I have put out some tea that I was coming upstairs to invite you and John to...but, you and Richard can just enjoy it while I finish up here."
Can no one see that I was very busy? This is not the time! How I am forced to go downstairs with this man frustrates me greatly. It is all John's fault for having to faint at such a terrible moment. How I do care for him, yet just not now!
"Would you like me to pour you some tea, Mrs. Callaway?" Richard asks me. No one ever calls me Mrs. Callaway. I do not like it at first. Yet, thinking more about it I do! It gives me another name by which to be called. It is like I am another person entirely!
"Thank you for coming to tea with me, Mrs. Callaway. I can see that you were busy upstairs when my sister and I intruded upon you. She likes to bother me all the time when I am busy and tries to force me to do things when I don't want to do them."
"Whatever do you mean?"
"She is always forcing me to take my medications and telling me that the world is a good place. And she confuses me a good deal. She will tell me a party is today when I know that the party was already last week. I do love her though and I know she is just trying to care for me."
"Oh yes. Jennie does try to care for me as well but she is always pestering me! She even tries to sleep with me sometimes and be tricky. I am glad for the times when she lets me alone and doesn't talk to me so much. I am a very busy woman."
"Oh? What keeps you so busy?"
"The wallpaper. Did you not see?"
"Yes I saw that you were crawling along the wall and had ripped the wallpaper away...why did you do it?"
"There is a woman! Ah! Do you not see her either? Jennie and John claim they do not but I cannot see how they do not see her. Especially now that I have revealed her to us all by stripping away that which has kept her enclosed for so long!"
"I did see people in that room...I see them everywhere. They are always with me. Maybe one of them was the woman that you see, but no one ever sees the people I see either. I can hear them too. My friend Clarissa calls them the voices because the doctors say they are just in my head, but I know they aren't. No one understands, but I know they are there."
"Oh! The doctors tell you things such as this too?"
"Yes yes. Between Clarissa, Jennie and the doctors I am never left alone. The voices are always there too. I just want to be alone and I can't be, no matter how much I want to. There are so many voices now and they never seem to leave any more like they used to. In the beginning they were only there sometimes, but now they are constantly around me. Does your woman talk to you too?"
"Well I do not yet know! I have just brought her out of the wallpaper and I felt so much freedom, as did she. Of this I am sure! It took much work to peel away all of that wallpaper and to have the time to do it was difficult as well since I am not alone enough. I wish I could have talked to her but I did not have the chance! With John fainting and Jennie running in with you along as well, she is probably gone by now. I have freed her from the wallpaper and now have not gotten to talk with her. Oh! What if she is gone and does not return? What shall I do?"
"Do not become upset, Mrs. Callaway. I would like if the voices went away from me and didn't come back. It's good to be left alone. I don't have that option anymore. You're lucky. I have been sealed with the fate of never again having the chance to really be alone again. Maybe you can escape that."
"Oh perhaps you are right, but I do not know! The woman could have talked to me and understood me better than anyone else! Jennie and John try, yet they do not know what to do with me. They tell me I am sick and need to stay here and rest, yet it is the last thing I ever wanted for myself! I needed to get out and was not allowed. Now that I have found something...someone...and it has been taken! I do not know what I will do now! What if they bring in more doctors for me? Oh please do not allow them! Please, dear friend! You understand me now, do you not?"
"I understand why you wouldn't want any more doctors, because I certainly don't either. Jennie keeps bringing me to the doctor too. It is good to know that someone else feels the way I do and sees people too. Maybe we're not crazy. Maybe they are because they can't see others like we can."
"Crazy? No! I will not hear of it!"
-We are interrupted.
"Clara? Richard? Are you alright?" Jennie is coming back. I hear her calling to us from upstairs. Oh! I wonder if John has awoken from his slumber! Ah, nevermind. I just want everyone to leave so that I can go see if my woman in the wallpaper is still there!