A quick sketch comic in which Gavroche finds a new person to admire.
basically the whole Hercle scene is a homeless abandoned kid having a Ring of Keys moment and getting heard and how does that not punch people in the emotions
I’m rereading the book, this version being the Christine Donougher translation, and couldn’t help noticing something that is now my favorite headcanon of all time. Gavroche has a crush on Bahorel.
“he tore the notice off the wall. This won Gavroche over. From that moment on, Gavroche began to study Bahorel.” (Book Eleven (the Atom Embraces the Storm), 969)
And more than just that, Gavroche listens to Bahorel, which he does not do to Montparnasse, or even Enjolras.
“Gavroche was struck by that word, Hercle. He took every opportunity to educate himself, and he felt respect for this tearer-down of posters. He asked him,‘What does it mean, Hercle?’
Bahorel replied, ‘It means “God damn it” in Latin.’” (969)
And, a little later we discover Gavroche appreciates men, and possibly was remarking on Bahorel and not the mysterious man with the beard.
“’Bel homme – yes, indeed, a handsome man!’ said Gavroche, who now understood Latin.” (970)
Just… putting this out there. Make of it what you will.
Also here’s another quote, entirely unrelated, that shattered my belief that I am a modern day (albeit brunette, but hair color can be changed) Enjolras.
“’The tall fair-haired fellow,’ said Grantaire, ‘that’s Enjolras’“ (Book Twelve (Corinthe), 984)
Isn’t the Gavroche-Bahorel friendship the actual best thing?!? I’m so sad everyone leaves it out of adaptations, it’s one of the most fascinating little echoes in the book! I think Donougher’s even one of those who misses a little bit of it later, but I’ll need to recheck that. (Also so very on board with Gavroche basically telling Bahorel “hell yeah you look good bro, high five”. And now I need the two of them doing the Uptown Funk routine at each other immediately if not retroactively.)
No really I think Gavroche and Bahorel’s friendship is an incredibly significant character interaction on so many levels?!?
Like, from Gavroche’s side– and he’s a pretty major character! – this is his first moment of recognition?? I mean, recognition of who he is, of who he wants to be , by someone who can give him that. He spends the whole book either being ignored or used and then ignored by everyone but the momes (who are another part of this, but that’s in a moment). Eponine says he gets her into the theater sometimes, but she doesn’t seem to know much about him otherwise; she doesn’t mention his name. * His parents lock him away and then throw him out; Thenardier doesn’t recognize him even when he saves Thenardier’s life, even when Thenardier is told point blank “uh, that’s your kid”, there’s not even the politeness of a thank-you that would be given to an equal. Montparnasse? Montparnasse acknowledges that Gavroche is useful, and I do think Montparnasse is, in his own limited way, trying to bring Gavroche into a life situation Montparnasse feels is useful to a kid, too– the only life Montparnasse knows. But it’s not what Gavroche wants to be! He wants to help people, and he works with Montparnasse to do that. But he doesn’t want what Montparnasse is offering, the life, the crime, the idleness, and Montparnasse can’t see that.
But Gavroche does want the revolution. Where the Patron-Minette seek him out for his usefulness, he follows the uprising on his own to try and be a part of something he respects. And he’s allowed– he asks Courfeyrac where they’re going and gets told to join. So far so good, but also not unusual; he’s been let come along before, and he’s a street kid, the street is his place. He knows what an emuete is.
And then he sees Bahorel rip down the poster, and hears the whole argument with Enjolras and all, and this kid, who no one gives anything to, who’s been shut out of his own family all his life, has the courage to reach out and claim the right of connection, to say hey, aren’t we alike? And he does this by asking for words, by trying to take Bahorel’s argot. “What does that mean, Hercules?”