How does the De Lacey family react when they see The Creature holding the elder De Lacey's hand?

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mwestwood eNotes educator| Certified Educator

For some time, the creature has been a secret observer of the DeLacey family, and in so doing, he has learned to speak. Having happened upon an abandoned satchel that contains the classical works of Plutarch's Lives, Milton's Paradise Lost and Goethe's The Sorrows of Young Werther, a novel that served to awaken Romanticism, the creature also teaches himself to read. But, his new knowledge is bittersweet because this acquired learning about heaven and hell and Satan as well as the angst of Werther increases his sense of alienation.

In this state of alienation, the "bitter gall of envy" strikes the creature, and he desires companionship. After watching the DeLaceys, a family that is decidedly loving, he vows to talk with the blind, older M. DeLacey in the hope that the man will sympathize with him enough to become his friend after hearing the genuine emotion in his voice. So, one day when the others are gone for a country walk, the creature knocks at the DeLacey door, and is told to enter by the elder DeLacey. Once inside, he tells old M. DeLacey that he is a traveler who needs to rest. Then he informs the older man that he has friends for whom he has performed acts of kindness, although they are unaware of their benefactor because they mistakenly believe that he means to harm them. But, now he wishes to disabuse them of this prejudice against him. The old man offers to intercede for him and help in any way he can. But, just as the creature expresses his gratitude, he hears the family returning; therefore, he jumps up and takes the old man's hand, saying desperately,

"Now is the time!--save and protect me! You and your family are the friends whom I seek. Do not you desert me in the hour of trial!"
"Great God!" exclaimed the old man, "who are you?"

As Felix, Safie, and Agatha enter the cottage, they hear old DeLacey and are horrified and frightened by the sight of the creature. In fact, Agatha faints, and Safie flees, running out of the cottage. Felix lunges at the creature and "with supernatural force," tears the creature's hold from around the knees of his father because he thinks the creature means to harm the old man. Furthermore, Felix knocks him to the floor and beats him violently with a stick. The creature can only flee to his miserable hovel. 

iridawn | Student

The monster often watches the family in order to understand them better, and once most of the family is out, he goes in the house in order to meet the elder. The elder is blind and therefore cannot see how the monster really looks, making it so he cannot discriminate against his appearance. While the monster looks scary, he has done deeds to help the family, and everyone but the older Mr. Delacey views him as a threat. When the family sees the monster they wrench him away from the older man and even resort to beating him. This demonstrates how they viewed the monster by his cover and gave no chance to explain for his situation. 

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