In Of Mice and Men, what does Lennie fear most in the final chapter?Besides being upset over killing Curley's wife

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cburr eNotes educator| Certified Educator


Before he kills Curley’s wife, Lennie is sad that he has killed his puppy. His bigger concern, however, is that because he killed the puppy George will be mad at him and won’t let him tend the rabbits.

When Curley’s wife shows up, Lennie is upset because George had so clearly told him to steer clear of her:

‘George says I ain’t to have nothing to do with you – talk to you or nothing.’

When Curley’s wife cries out in anger because Lennie is stroking her hair too hard, Lennie panics.

‘Please don’t,’ he begged. ‘Oh! Please don’t do that. George’ll be mad.’

A lot of what Lennie is upset about is that he’ll lose the chance to care for the rabbits. However, this seems to be wrapped up in other emotions for Lennie. He has a history of panicking and holding on too tight when he’s confused and scared. He did in Weed with the red dress, in the bunk house with Curley’s hand, and now with Curley’s wife.

Finally, after he realizes that Curley’s wife is dead, Lennie seems to have some appreciation that he what he has done is really serious. It’s not clear that he is capable of feeling any remorse for the death itself. However, his visions at the pond demonstrate that he is truly afraid that George will leave him.

musician101 | Student

He is upset that he has also killed the little puppy therefore he fears that he will not be allowed to tend the rabbits.