In chapter XXX Tess finally says Yes to Angel’s proposal. Then comments that their meeting years ago where Angel did not dance with Tess might be a bad omen.
Tess has written her mother about accepting Angel’s proposal and tells her mother that she did not tell him about her past. Joan tells her not to and that many woman had a past before their husbands. “Many a woman-some of the Highest in the Land-have had a Trouble in their time; and why should you Trumpet yours when others don’t Trumpet theirs?”
Tess feels even better with her decision after receiving that letter. Angel is good to her during this time and they are very much in love. They spend their free time together and Angel is not shy about showing his affection for her.
Tess worries that word of their relationship (and her being a dairymaid) will spread to his friends in Emminster. Angel assures her that with her name, d’Urberville, they have nothing to fear. In this chapter, as in past chapters, Angel continues to put Tess on a pedestal, one that few people could actually stand on. He even calls her, “the most bewitching milkmaid ever seen.”
One Sunday, perhaps a few weeks after agreeing to marry Angel, Tess and Angel are sitting alone in the Crick house. They’re staring into each others eyes when Tess breaks down and says “I am not worthy of you-no, I am not!” She’s on the verge of tears and Angel is upset that she speaks so poorly of herself, but comforts her. She finally steps out for a few minutes and collects herself.
When Tess returns Angel teases her that she’s capricious, but she insists she is not. Then the settle down together and discuss what is on Angel’s mind – a wedding date. Angel wants to marry before starting his life with his own farm. Tess in her freak out says she wants to wait until after, but then that she can’t wait.
While snuggled up discussing this, Mr. and Mrs. Crick walk in with some of the milkmaids. Tess panics about what they saw, which really wasn’t much. Angel responds that they are going to marry. No one seems all that surprised and are quite happy for them. Mr. Crick goes on to talk about what a wonderful wife Tess will be.
After dinner when Tess gets to her room where the other girls are awake waiting for her. They tell her that they should hate her for stealing Angel, but that they just can’t hate her. She tells them that he should have chosen one of them because he would be better off. Man, this girl needs to get over her guilt, it wasn’t her fault!
Tess falls asleep crying and promises to tell him the truth. Could Hardy draw this out any more then he already is?