Ending 17 – from an American novel published in 1922


The author’s wife, ca. 1918


But the man in the plaid cap was quite wrong. Anthony Patch, sitting near the rail and looking out at the sea, was not thinking of his money, for he had seldom in his life been really preoccupied with material vainglory, nor of Edward Shuttleworth, for it is best to look on the sunny side of these things. No – he was concerned with a series of reminiscences, much as a general might look back upon a successful campaign and analyze his victories. He was thinking of the hardships, the insufferable tribulations he had gone through. They had tried to penalize him for the mistakes of his youth. He had been exposed to ruthless misery, his very craving for romance had been punished, his friends had deserted him–even Gloria had turned against him. He had been alone, alone – facing it all.

Only a few months before people had been urging him to give in, to submit to mediocrity, to go to work. But he had known that he was justified in his way of life – and he had stuck it out stanchly. Why, the very friends who had been most unkind had come to respect him, to know he had been right all along. Had not the Lacys and the Merediths and the Cartwright-Smiths called on Gloria and him at the Ritz-Carlton just a week before they sailed?

Great tears stood in his eyes, and his voice was tremulous as he whispered to himself.

“I showed them,” he was saying. “It was a hard fight, but I didn’t give up and I came through!”


About James Steerforth

I am an author of poetry and fiction, translator and painter who loves to have fun with borrowed feathers.
This entry was posted in Novel, Novel endings, Novelists, Writing. Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to Ending 17 – from an American novel published in 1922

  1. maryt says:

    Well, that’s beautiful Zelda Sayre Fitzgerald! Famous in her own right. The Beautiful and the Damned.
    The only thing I’ve ever really loved by F. Scott is the Great Gatsby. Now don’t get mad at me but I don’t think F. is that talented…I think he was created by his editor, Maxwell Perkins.

  2. No offense there – I don’t feel strongly about Fitzgerald, either. A phenomenon of his time.

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