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In "Desiree's Baby," what is Madame Valmonde's reply to Desiree's letter? |

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Desiree's background is unknown, so when she realizes that her son's skin color is the same as some of the "quadroon" (one-quarter black) slaves like La Blanche (which means "the White Woman"), she is told that this is the case because she is not white. Desiree was a foundling, and so no one knows for sure what her ethnic background is; she looks white, and so she has always been treated as though she is white. There is no proof to support the assertion that she is not white, other than the fact that her son is clearly not completely white. Desiree had already written to her adopted mother, who told her to "'Come home to Valmonde; back to your mother who loves you. Come with your child.'" Desiree's white mother loves Desiree regardless of her skin color, or her child's. Desiree approaches her husband, Armand, who once claimed not to care about the mysteriousness of her background when he married her, and he tells her that he wants her to leave.

He thought Almighty God had dealt cruelly and unjustly with him; and felt, somehow that he was paying Him back in kind when he stabbed thus into his wife's soul.

Armand is apparently incredibly selfish and only sees how the development of his son's darker skin tone affects him, his reputation, his social standing, and so forth. We learn later in the story that Armand's mother was actually a black woman, and so it seems as though it was actually his background that affected his son's skin color, not Desiree's.

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