How does Finny get Gene to break the rules
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Gene shows his weakness for Finny on page nine, with the tree incident illustrating perfectly how great Finny's hold on Gene is and what kinds of things Finny can persuade him to do. Finny and Gene are kindred spirits, but are also foils to each other; Finny's daredevil, rule-breaking attitude contrasts nicely with Gene's rule-abiding conservatism, and though the two are good friends, they are very different kinds of people.
In Chapter Three, Finny begins to tell friends about his and Gene's new club; quite a few of them join, and Finny makes up the rules himself as he goes along. The first rule is that Finny and Gene must jump from the tree at the beginning of every meeting; Gene cannot get used to this daredevil stunt, though he has done it many times before. The club meets every night, because Finny deems it so; Gene doesn't want to go every night, or do everything Finny wants to, but follows Finny anyway because of their friendship.
In Chapter Four, Gene wakes up at sunrise on the beach; he watches dawn break for the first time, while Finny is still sleeping. Gene realizes that he has a math exam in three hours, exactly the amount of time it will take to get back to Devon from the beach; he makes it back in time, but fails the testit is, according to him, the first test he has ever failed.
Gene, an academic perfectionist, laments his poor performance on the test to Finny; Finny mocks Gene's ambition to be first in their class, and Gene begins to believe that Finny doesn't want him to do well in school, so that he will come out ahead. Finny excels in athletics, and is definitely the best in the school; Gene knows that he can be the best in the school in academics, but thinks that Finny's high-jinks and his attempts to take up Gene's time are Finny's attempts to make sure that he comes out ahead in the relationship.