What is the relationship between the two characters in the story?  What is the point of contention between them?

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William Delaney | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

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The man and the girl he calls Jig are lovers. It is possible that they are married. They have been traveling around Europe together for a long time, judging from all the hotel labels on their luggage. Jig has become pregnant, and the man has persuaded her to have an abortion in Madrid. They are waiting at a transfer station for the express train to Spain's capital city. Although Jig has agreed to have the abortion, she is not at all happy about it. The man is afraid she will change her mind, which explains why he keeps assuring her that it is a very simple operation and that their relationship will be just the same afterwards. She knows it could be a dangerous operation and feels sure it will destroy their relationship. They do not use the word abortion because that is understood. Also, they are breaking the law and doing it in a foreign country where they could get into even more serious trouble than they would at home. The story was published in 1927, when abortion was strictly illegal almost anywhere in the world. The big point of contention between them is simply that he wants her to have an abortion and she wants to keep the baby.


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