Summary of Section XXI
Mrs. Grose wakes the governess the next day saying that Flora is feverish and hysterical. She does not want to see the governess again. The governess still believes the ghost is making her act this way. She tells Mrs. Grose to take Flora away from Bly straight to the uncle in London. She will stay at Bly to see what she can do with Miles. She thinks Miles wants to confess. Mrs. Grose says that Flora is very bad, especially the language she uses. The governess takes this as a sign the ghost is possessing her, and according to her, Mrs. Grose says she believes the same and wants to get the girl away. The housekeeper also says that it appears Miles stole the letter to the uncle, and now Mrs. Grose believes that what he did at school was to steal things. The governess says the letter only contained a request for an interview with the uncle; it did not tell about the events. She hopes to get a confession from Miles so he can be “saved”(p. 79).
Commentary on Section XXI
A wary reader might read this conversation between Mrs. Grose and the governess in a more cynical way, as if Mrs. Grose is just confirming she believes Flora is very bad and must be taken away. The governess thinks Mrs. Grose is justifying her view that ghosts are corrupting the children. Now her only goal is to save Miles by making him confess.