Janie's relationship with Tea Cake starts with instant attraction. Tea Cake is a younger man, but he is much more emotional and open than Janie's previous husband, Joe Starks. Tea Cake understands Janie, and the two relate much better, which encourages her attraction to him. Additionally, the first thing the two do together is play checkers, something Joe never wanted Janie to do because it was a "man's game" that he didn't think she should be allowed to play.
The town doesn't like the union between the two for several reasons. For one, Janie is much wealthier and in a higher class than Tea Cake, so the citizens worry that he is using her. For another, they feel she hasn't mourned long enough for Joe, and they believe Janie has been acting immature by rushing into this relationship.
Janie has an instant relationship with Tea Cake. For a moment, she questions whether she allowed their friendship and intimacy to develop too quickly:
Maybe this strange man was up to something! (chapter 9)
(The entire section contains 4 answers and 670 words.)