The Secret River

What does Blackwood already know and what is he trying to express to his friend?

After Thornhill and Blackwood encounter Smasher Sullivan for the first time, Blackwood advises William, “Ain’t nothing in this world just for the taking.... A man got to pay a fair price for taking.... Matter of give a little, take a little” (p. 104).

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Blackwood is trying to impress that nothing is ever free..... there is always an ulterior motive.