- Summaries (2)
Young Harry is in love and wants to marry an actress, much to the displeasure of his family. Harry thinks that Bishop Armstrong knows nothing about love so Armstrong tells him the story of Rita and himself. Rita was an Opera Star singing in New York who was at a party given by Cornelius. Armstrong was a 28 year old rector. He fell for Rita when he saw her and after six weeks he wanted to marry her. Naive as he was, he thought that all of Rita's "relationships" were in the distant past, but Rita lives for the moment and knows that she can never marry Armstrong.
When Rita realizes that Tom still doesn't get it, she tells him that she is the kept mistress of his friend Cornelius. This is too much for him, and he rejects her. Flash forward to Rita's final public performance. Still pining for Tom - her first and only experience of chaste love - she feels too heartsick to perform, but Cornelius persuades her not to let down her public. She's a huge success - and yes, Tom is in the audience. Back at Rita's apartment, Cornelius tries to cheer her up, but she's too unhappy to eat or drink. Cornelius tactfully leaves when he hears that Tom is at the door. Tom tells Rita he can't get her out of his mind, bur as a man of God he must try to save her soul. He asks her to pray with him, but when they kneel, passion overcomes him and he tries to make love to her. She tells him that because she finds him irresistible, it s up to him to decide what kind of woman she will be from now on. Tom gets up, wishes Rita well, and leaves her standing in a prayerful attitude. As the bishop ends his tale, Harry asks if he ever heard from Rita again. The bishop shows him a newspaper article, announcing Rita's death in a convent. Harry now feels he should not act too hastily, but the bishop urges him not to deny romance.
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