DIALOGUE THAT MADE ME SWOON
Hi everyone. Thea Devine here. It probably won’t come as a surprise to anyone who knows me that GWTW is among my favorite books. I first read it when I was sixteen, and you can probably guess my teenaged reaction to the love story. But, as I subsequently discovered, it’s wholly different book when you reread it when you‘re older (say, oh — thirty and forty), and as I did recently with my sister-in-law. However there’s one thing in GWTW that never changes and that, for me, was always the whole key to anything about romance.
It’s the moment at Twelve Oaks before the picnic, when Scarlett — in the book — has just encountered Charles Hamilton on the staircase, and turns to see Rhett staring up her, and indignantly thinks, “he looks as if — as if he knows what I look like without my shimmy.” (sic — my edition).
I love that moment. I always thought it went beyond prurience, that he was not envisioning her naked, he was not thinking sex; rather he was seeing her whole, her beauty, her vanity, her greed, her flaws and phony flirtatiousness, and everything about her right there that made her “her” — and he decided in that moment, he wanted her, that he loved her. Not just the body, but the whole person, just as she was.
Don’t we all? Want the guy who wants us just as we are? Without lists, demands, requirements must-haves, guarantees?. Don’t we want to say to him, “I love you,” and have him respond, as does Han Solo in a critical moment to Princess Leia in The Empire Strikes Back, “I know.”
Oh, be still my heart. That he knew in his deepest core that she loved him. That acknowledgement was more than him saying “I love you.” It said that he’d always known and everything he’d ever done was colored by that, in spite of the bickering, the clashes, in spite of everything.
I love that. Who wouldn’t love that? But even better — a moment on House: you can quibble about whether House and Cuddy belonged together (and I will, because I didn’t think they did), but when he said to her in a last year’s episode, “I always want to kiss you,” — I melted into a puddle of swoon. Always .. Are you imagining that? Always … God, I wish I’d written that line. Think what means. Always …
But then, I’m hopeless romantic. I love love. I love being in love. I think love is forever, in spite of all the recent public and humiliating break-ups in the news. I think those moments above expressed in dialogue are at the heart of romance — and that we all yearn for that deep visceral knowledge of the other person that transcends everything but the need and desire to be together because …
Because we love — and they know. Always …
Do you have a favorite line of dialogue? Or something amazing your husband ever said to you? Or something else that made you swoon …?
Thea Devine is the author of twenty-five historical and contemporary novels and a dozen novellas. She was honored as a Romance Pioneer by Romantic Times. She’s currently working on a sequel to her June 2011 release, The Darkest Heart.