Critical Reading>Select an Answer
Alyosha had been struck by Katerina Ivanovna's beauty when, three weeks before, Dmitri had first brought him, at Katerina Ivanovna's special request, to be introduced to her. There had been no conversation between them at that interview, however. Supposing Alyosha to be very shy, Katerina Ivanovna had talked all the time to Dmitri to spare him. Alyosha had been silent, but he had seen a great deal very clearly. He was struck by the imperiousness, proud ease, and self-confidence of the haughty girl. And all that was certain, Alyosha felt that he was not exaggerating it. He thought her great glowing black eyes were very fine, especially with her pale, even rather sallow, longish face. But in those eyes and in the lines of her exquisite lips there was something with which his brother might well be passionately in love, but which perhaps could not be loved for long. He expressed this thought almost plainly to Dmitri when, after the visit, his brother besought and insisted that he should not conceal his impressions on seeing his betrothed.
"You'll be very happy with her, but perhaps—not tranquilly happy."
"Quite so, brother. Such people remain always the same. They don't yield to fate. So you think I shan't love her for ever."
"No; perhaps you will love her for ever. But perhaps you won't always be happy with her."
Alyosha had given his opinion at the time, blushing, and angry with himself for having yielded to his brother's entreaties and put such "foolish" ideas into words. For his opinion had struck him as awfully foolish immediately after he had uttered it. He felt ashamed too of having given so confident an opinion about a woman.
During his first visit with Katerina, Alyosha is best characterized as ______
A.curious but intimidated.
B.nervous and self-conscious.
C.reserved but observant.
D.impressed and flattered.
Choice C is the best answer. Alyosha doesn't speak during the meeting, but he does pay attention, watching and listening to Katerina.