A Story a Day #10: Guy de Maupassant
February 15th, 2020
"Hautot and His Son"
Guy de Maupassant
The story begins with a young man and his father preparing to go out on their first hunt of the season. They have a farm, but seem to be fairly well off. On the hunt, the father gets in a terrible accident that leaves him on his death bed. The father confesses that he has had a mistress for the last ten years and that his son must go see her so she won't think ill of him. The father passes away and the son goes to find the mistress. When she arrives, she notices the table set for his father and young boy of about five. He breaks the news to her and learns that the boy is his brother. Despite a rocky start, they arrange to see each other once a week.
This story delivers a fair few shocks and betrayals but what is strange about it is how the main character reacts. He doesn't seem to be that hurt or overwhelmed despite losing his father and discovering his very large secret. While he does admit he spends a week grieving, there are not shouts of anger or outrage at the turn of events. In fact, the end of the story seems to be quite pleasant. Though he has lost his father, alongside his already deceased mother, he has gained a motherly figure and a brother.