I was surprised when my husband finally arrived at my prison cell to provide me with medical help. It was a long-awaited action since he had been leaving me alone in the unpleasant conditions of this dreadful cell. He offered me a cup of medicine, leaving me speechless. However, being aware of his true intentions, I declined to consume his concoction. Despite my resistance, he assured me that it was not poisoned and revealed his desire for me to survive so that he could seek his revenge.
In his strong advice, he urges me to disclose the identity of my lover, asserting that he will unquestionably detect signs of sympathy that will guide him to the person responsible. Despite my refusal to share my secret, he compels me to promise not to divulge his own identity either. His unsettling smile causes me to wonder if he might be the “Black Man”. Eventually, after several months, I am released from prison and presented with the opportunity to depart Boston. Nevertheless, I decide against it and instead opt to remain. Consequently, I settle in a small deserted cabin on the outskirts of town.
As an outcast, I have chosen to distance myself from various individuals: town fathers, respected women, beggars, children, and strangers. Despite my isolation, my exceptional talent in needlework enables me to support myself. Through my craft, I have participated in significant life events, with the exception of marriage. However, my disconnection from society remains a persistent presence. I have longed for companionship and understanding, thus devoting some of my time to charitable endeavors. Nevertheless, even this kindness does not ease my emotional distress.
The individuals I assist continuously disrespect me, occasionally I simply desire to resign and abandon. Nevertheless, I must express my deep gratitude for having such a precious daughter, Pearl. Pearl’s very essence appears to be innately conflicting with the rigid regulations of the Puritan Society; she has inherited all of my emotions, desires, and she consistently causes trouble. Despite this, I still adore Pearl and frequently fret about her. I attempted to educate her about God, and she exclaimed that she had no heavenly father. However, I detest the judgment placed upon her solely because she is my companion.
She is aware of her solitude in the world and often constructs imaginary figures in her mind to provide companionship. I observe Pearl’s immense fascination with the scarlet letter, and sometimes it appears as though she deliberately seeks to inflict pain upon me by toying with it. On one occasion, she was showering the letter with wildflowers, and I exclaimed, “Child, what are you doing?” Astonishingly, she turned the question around and demanded that I disclose her own origins. Such audacity coming from such a young child left me dumbfounded. However, I gradually started to realize that perhaps she isn’t the malevolent child that many of the townsfolk perceive her to be.