Native Son

How does Bigger use fear on Bessie?

How does Bigger use fear on Bessie?

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After making innuendos about Jan's activities the night of Mary's disappearance, Bigger sees more money in his future and plans to write a ransom note for the dead girl. Bigger thne goes to Bessie's apartment and he begins to write the ransom note. Bessie watches Bigger as his gloved hands scrawl a rather pitiful note signed "Red" (to implicate Communists). As he finishes, Bessie bluntly asks Bigger if he killed Mary. He begins to deny the charge, but Bessie says that she can look at him and tell that he has and that if he can kill Mary then there is little to stop him from killing her. Bigger admits his crime and hisses at Bessie, warning her not to snitch and threatening her that she is as guilty as he is.

Bessie begins crying that Bigger has ruined her life and she wishes for death. Bigger grabs the knife and warns Bessie to stop crying. He adds that if she screams, he will surely kill her. After Bessie quiets down, Bigger takes her outside into the blizzard; Bessie tries to convince Bigger that he should simply run away with the money he has. Bigger slaps Bessie and points out the building where she is going to collect the ransom money.