“Well, Mother, there’s something I want to tell you,” Rapunzel said cautiously. Mother Gothel started to ramble (漫谈) about their earlier argument, telling Rapunzel that she was wrong and Mother Gothel was right. But Rapunzel remained focused (有明确目标的).
“Okay,” she said. “I’ve been thinking a lot about what you said earlier, and—”
“I hope you’re not still talking about the stars,” Mother Gothel said impatiently.
“Floating lights,” Rapunzel said quickly, “and yes... I’m leading up to (使话题渐渐转向) that, but—”
“Because I really thought we dropped (不予考虑) the issue, sweetheart.”
“No, Mother,” Rapunzel said. She needed to say that she had captured (俘获) a ruffian—all by herself! “I’m just saying, you think I’m not strong enough to handle myself out there, but—”
Mother Gothel laughed. “Oh, darling, I know you’re not strong enough to handle yourself out there.”
“But if you’d just listen ...,” Rapunzel said, not wanting to quarrel with (与…争吵) her, but definitely wanting her to stop talking and pay attention.
“Rapunzel, we’re done talking about this,” Mother Gothel snapped.
“Trust me,” Rapunzel said, determined to (决心要) go on with what she had to say.
“Rapunzel—” Mother Gothel was warning her.
“I know what I’m—”
“Rapunzel!” Mother Gothel shouted. “ENOUGH WITH (够了) THE LIGHTS, RAPUNZEL! YOU ARE NOT LEAVING THIS TOWER! EVER!”
Mother Gothel stood in the center of the room, her fists clenched (紧握) at her sides. Rapunzel was dumbfounded (目瞪口呆的). All at once (突然) she realized that it didn’t matter what she did or said. There was no hope that Mother Gothel would ever let her go outside. Rapunzel would be trapped (被困在) at the top of the tower for the rest of her life.
Rapunzel turned and looked longingly (渴望地) at her mural of lights, then at her closet. Inside that closet was proof that she could handle herself in the outside world. Inside that closet was a ruffian whom she had captured. By herself!
Inside that closet was the guide who would take her to see the sparkling lights. Mother Gothel would never have to know about it.
Rapunzel made her decision.
“All I was going to say, Mother, is that I know what I want for my birthday now.”
“And what is that?” Mother Gothel asked.
“New paint (颜料),” Rapunzel answered. “The paint made from the white shells you once brought me.”
“Well, that’s a very long trip, Rapunzel. Almost three days’ time,” Mother Gothel said, shaking her head, trying to dissuade (劝阻) Rapunzel.
But this time, Rapunzel replied in kind. This time, everything was different. This time, Rapunzel knew what she wanted, and she knew exactly how to get it.
“I just thought it was a better idea than the stars.”
Mother Gothel’s face brightened (快活) a bit. This was what she wanted to hear. “You’ll be all right on your own (靠自己)?”
“I know I’m safe as long as I’m here,” Rapunzel answered.
Mother Gothel sighed. She got up, packed (打包) some food for her journey, and kissed Rapunzel on the top of the head. “All right, then. I’ll be back in three days’ time,” she said. “I love you very much, dear.”
“I love you more!” Rapunzel said brightly (欢快地), and then began helping Mother Gothel down the tower.
“I love you most,” Mother Gothel called back.
Rapunzel watched from her window until Mother Gothel disappeared into the forest. Then, using her hair, she pulled the closet doors open.
The man in the closet was still unconscious. Quickly, Rapunzel sat him on a chair. Then she firmly (结实地) tied him up with her hair.
Rapunzel leaped up to (跳到) the rafters (椽), held up her pan, and waited, ready for anything. Pascal jumped on the man and tried waking him by slapping (猛打) his face with his little tail. No response (没有反应). Pascal looked at Rapunzel. She urged (催促) him on. Pascal slapped his tail against the man’s cheek again. Still no response.
Pascal thought for a moment. Then he slipped (悄悄放) his long tongue into the man’s ear.
“Blll-AHH!” Flynn awoke abruptly (突然地). Pascal’s tongue was gross (令人恶心的) and—and it tickled (使发痒)!
“Struggling is pointless (没有意义的),” Rapunzel said firmly. Then she jumped down from the rafters and faced him.