Why does Cherry like Dallas in The Outsiders?

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Although Cherry Valance is a popular cheerleader, it is obvious that she is attractive to dangerous young men. Her boyfriend is Bob Sheldon, the Soc with the rings who has beaten Johnny so savagely, and who eventually dies when Johnny knifes him while trying to drown Ponyboy . Cherry is...

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Although Cherry Valance is a popular cheerleader, it is obvious that she is attractive to dangerous young men. Her boyfriend is Bob Sheldon, the Soc with the rings who has beaten Johnny so savagely, and who eventually dies when Johnny knifes him while trying to drown Ponyboy. Cherry is attracted to Dallas for the same reasons: Despite his "dirty talk," angry disposition, and complete disregard for the law, these are the things to which Cherry is attracted. She has already heard about Dally and how he looked "hard as nails and twice as tough." Yet,

     "I kind of admire him," Cherry said softly...  (Chapter 2)

and she later tells Pony that "I could fall in love with Dallas Winston... I hope I never see him again, or I will." For Cherry, Dallas is a type of forbidden fruit that would draw the ire of her parents and friends, but who would keep Cherry alive with excitement and his brand of danger.

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