Knowles concludes Gene’s thoughts when he says, “I never killed anybody and I never developed an intense level of hatred for the enemy. Because my war ended before I ever put on a uniform; I was on active duty all my time at school; I killed my enemy there. Only Phineas never was afraid, only Phineas never hated anyone.”(204) Gene realizes that his only enemy is himself and the wicked thoughts of the heart and mindset. He doesn’t have to fret anymore because he is finally able to move past all this and become what Finny wanted him to be, a part of him.
At the party when discussing the bombing of Europe, Mr. Patch-Withers discovers that Finny is wearing the school tie with his pink shirt. With some quick anecdotes about how his shirt is a contribution to the war effort and also be glad he wore a belt because his pants could fall down. With these quick anecdotes Finny got away with it, gave Mr. Patch-Withers a good laugh and enraged Gene’s envy towards Finny. Gene gave this quote about the instance, “He (Finny) had gotten away with everything. I felt a sudden stab of disappointment........” (21) Gene really does not know what he is feeling he says, but deep down it is hi... ... middle of paper ... ...out to wreck my studies.
He also felt like Finny was trying to sabotage him with relation to his schoolwork. Lastly Gene felt guilt, guilt from what was described by him as a “blind impulse” and also from having the truth revealed to him resulting in a fatal accident. Gene fought with his fears throughout the story. He thought that he was a complete person, full of what a man should be, but when he got to Devon and met Finny, he felt he was incomplete, as though he lacked something. He tried to find ways to fill the void by associating with all that Finny did.
One’s shadow can be toxic when displayed to the outside world, especially when it is not in check by the individual. Gene has accepted his dark side when he admits he had been the cause of his friend’s death. In the very end of the novel, Gene finally takes responsibility for all of his shadow’s actions against his best friend, as he thinks to himself, “I never killed anybody and I never developed an intense level of hatred for the enemy. Because my war ended before I ever put on a uniform; I was on active duty all my time at school; I killed my enemy there” (204). Gene’s transformation from the beginning of the novel to the end is clearly seen in this quotation, as he no longer denies his shadow’s existence and now claims responsibility of the darkness inside himself.
No one retaliates to an action without an action to retaliate to. Although Benedict Arnold is known as America’s most famous traitor, his acts of treason can surely be justified. First of all, Benedict Arnold did plenty for the Revolution but was never truly thanked or paid for his services. He had suffered a leg wound in an assault on Quebec, was reinjured at the Battle of Saratoga and left crippled forever but never received any medal of honor (Who Served Here?). He gave his own money and time to train his forces so that they could be the best in the army (Creighton), but he was never shown any gratitude.
When Gene comes to terms with the accident causing Finny’s injury and leading to his death, Gene finds his separate peace. As Gene walks around the Devon School, fifteen years after being a student, he says, “I never killed anybody and I never developed an intense level of hatred for the enemy. Because my war ended before I ever put on a uniform; I was on active duty all my time at school; I killed my enemy there” (204). Here Gene’s recognized confession demonstrates that he has removed himself from his innocence, thus allowing him to acknowledge accountability for Finny’s injury. Gene also takes away with him an understanding of how Finny never faces an enemy and completely loses his image of innocence.
Gradually, Gene grows jealous of his friend. He begins to hope that Finny will get caught and punished for one of his many wild stunts. For instance, when Pinny wore an outrageous pink shirt, he escaped punishment by giving a satisfying reason saying that it was his emblem. Gene wants Finny to be forced down to his level so that he can compete with him and not just lose to him.Gene tries to please Finny. Although he knows that by doing so, he is acting against every instinct of his behavior.
Being head of the class isn’t about furthering Genes pursuit of education, but instead is used as an opportunity to get back a... ... middle of paper ... ...e up to. Gene feels he has an advantage over Finny, the enemy, because he feels like he knows how Finny’s mind works. To Gene Finny is a spy trying to infiltrate his schedule and destroy his goals of being the best student at Devon. In conclusion Gene and Finny aren’t friends. True friends do not envy each other, or wage war with each other.
After the accident, Finny could never play any sports again; merely being able to walk is a blessing. For the duration of the ... ... middle of paper ... ...t contribute to any of the war efforts himself. He wrote to every group that was associated to the war and fighting for the peace, but he always got the same reply saying that they had no use of a person with a crippled leg. Gene finally wakes up to reality when Finny dies. He realizes the way of life that he was living while a Devon, and the type of person that he had become.
He would rather be in accordance to the rules and be on his best behavior, than to be a rebel who goes against everything. Finny, on the other hand was more of a rebel. “I wonder what would happen if I looked like a fairy to everyone.” (909). Finny, more of a rebel, is very outgoing; he, however shows himself off as a perfect individual. One day at Devon, he gets into small dispute because he wore the school tie as a belt.