The excerpt represents the core issue or deciding factor on which you must meditate, and is drawn from Chance by Joseph Conrad:|
his state-room. Franklin said, "Yes, sir." But the captain,
silent, leaned a little forward grasping the door handle. So he,
Franklin, walked aft keeping his eyes on him. When he had come up
quite close he said again, "Yes, sir?" interrogatively. Still
silence. The mate didn't like to be stared at in that manner, a
manner quite new in his captain, with a defiant and self-conscious
stare, like a man who feels ill and dares you to notice it.
Franklin gazed at his captain, felt that there was something wrong,
and in his simplicity voiced his feelings by asking point-blank:
"What's wrong, sir?"
The captain gave a slight start, and the character of his stare