In Fitzgerald's The Great Gatsby, what request does Nick make of Daisy when he asks her to tea?

Expert Answers

An illustration of the letter 'A' in a speech bubbles

At the beginning of chapter five, Nick calls up Daisy Buchanan in the morning and invites her to tea. Nick had previously spoke to Jordan Baker and agreed to act as the intermediary between Daisy and Jay Gatsby. After Nick invites Daisy over for tea, he requests that she...

Unlock
This Answer Now

Start your 48-hour free trial to unlock this answer and thousands more. Enjoy eNotes ad-free and cancel anytime.

Start your 48-Hour Free Trial

At the beginning of chapter five, Nick calls up Daisy Buchanan in the morning and invites her to tea. Nick had previously spoke to Jordan Baker and agreed to act as the intermediary between Daisy and Jay Gatsby. After Nick invites Daisy over for tea, he requests that she not bring her husband, Tom. Daisy cleverly responds to Nick's request by asking, "Who is ‘Tom’?" (Fitzgerald, 89). It is important for Daisy to come alone because Jay Gatsby wishes to reunite with her and does not want her husband to interfere with his plan of winning her heart. Even though Daisy is married and has a daughter, Jay Gatsby attempts to relive the past and convince her to leave Tom for him. Daisy does not expect to see her former lover when she arrives at Nick's home and is initially astonished to see Jay Gatsby for the first time in five years. After an extremely awkward introduction, Gatsby and Daisy hit it off. After having tea at Nick's home, Gatsby invites Daisy to visit his lavish mansion next door.

Approved by eNotes Editorial Team
An illustration of the letter 'A' in a speech bubbles

In Chapter V, Nick relates that he called Daisy from his office the next morning at the behest of Jordan Baker and invited her to come to tea. The following dialogue reveals the request Nick makes of Daisy over the telephone.

"Don't bring Tom," I warned her.

"What?"

"Don't bring Tom."

"Who is 'Tom'?" she asked innocently.

Nick felt he had to warn her not to bring her husband Tom because that would be extremely awkward and would make Nick look guilty. Daisy may have asked "Who is 'Tom'?" "innocently," but it would only have been a pretense. She may have suspected that Nick wanted her to meet somebody--although she would have had no idea that it would have been Gatsby. When Daisy arrives at Nick's cottage she reveals only a part of what she was thinking when Nick asked her not to bring Tom.

"Are you in love with me," she said low in my ear, "or why did I have to come alone?"

She may be only half-joking. She may truly believe Nick might be in love with her, and she may find this exciting. 

Approved by eNotes Editorial Team