Nothing says adventure like running away from villains and getting shot at to start a career as a spy. Though many townspeople of Cumberland in Geoffrey Treases Cue for Treason think Peter Brownrigg is the best of the best, it is clear that not many people inherit the qualities to become a good spy. Katherine Russel is an exception. Kit is courageous and secretive, and therefor is the best spy in Cumberland. To begin, courage is one Kits most striking characteristics. Although it is shown throughout the book on many occasions, by a couple characters, it tells us that she is a brave person.
One example of this was when the miners tried to block the road so they could rob the two, but they failed. This happened because kit was able to be courageous affectively, at the right time. “So she rode back. Heroine or idiot? I didn’t know. I’m flattered to know that, for the moment, she was thinking more of my fate” (Trease 253) said Peter Brownrigg after Kit turned to save him. Katherine was able to get away on her horse when peter was unable to. Katherine was being very courageous risking her own life for that of her friends when faced with a dangerous situation.
When Mr. Desmond fell into a river with his horse Katherine was one of the first people to jump in and save him. As peter said himself “She swam like an otter, and I saw at once that I needn’t fear for her anymore, than myself” (90). Jumping into a river to save someone who is injured must be the biggest act of courage and bravery. Again she risks her life for that of someone else’s and returns unscathed. She also risked revealing her secret when she changed from her wet clothes.
The last point would be when Kit manages to find out Mr. Armthwaite is actually a friend of Sir Philip Morten. Courage is shown here when she threatens him and jumps out of a window with Peter. “If you touch that bell cord” said Kit “you’ll get something that will upset you still more” (229). Mr. Armthwaite is left dumbfounded that she found this out. The courage is shown here when she finds it in herself to pull out her gun and start accusing Mr. Armthwaite of being on Cahoots with Sir Philip Morten. These are the parts of the book that show she is courageous which is as to why she is the best spy in Cumberland.
Next, Kit shows how she is very secretive and protective about her life and about how many things people know about her. The main secret she is keeping from everyone is that she is a girl. She does not relize it but all the other child actors, at the time, were angry because she did not participate in any of their games or activities that would show her true identity. “Kit showed no special interest in me –or anyone else, for he lived a strange aloof existence” (75) said Peter when he was discovering and questioning who kit was “Who was Kit Kirkstone? ” (74).
This is an important part of the book because it gives Peter an idea that he is actually a she. It also shows that she was able to keep her secret for that long already. Another good way she was being secretive was the way she never told anyone bout Sir Philip Morton or what he was going to do to her. This was shown when Kit spills the beans on her past life including the arranged marriage with Sir Philip “ I pity the man who marries you against your will” (114) chuckled Shakespeare. The way the other characters react when this is told is surprisingly believable (shocked and surprised).
This is so because Sir Philip Morton is also the man chasing peter. Katherine was also able to keep this a secret till this part of the book. The Last point would be when Kit tells Mr. Desmond she is actually a boy. Mr. Desmond is one of the many people who believed this throughout most of the book. After giving Mr. Desmond a fake name, Katherine is allowed into the actors group after showing some talent “Kirkstone will pass” sighed Desmond. This is shows how good she is at lying.
Kit had no choice to lie to Mr. Desmond because he would have not let her act if she found out she was a girl. Mr. Desmond would have put her on backstage with his wife Mrs. Desmond. Considering all the points that were shown throughout the book on Kits secrecy and true identity, it’s safe to say that she is the best spy in Cumberland. In conclusion, courageous and secretive are just two of the many words to describe Katherine Russel, which shows she is the best spy in Cumberland. Through the acts and demonstrations given by Katherine Russel, it is obvious she should continue down the path that she has chosen, but when shown again, is the life of a spy an appropriate one? Appropriate for a twelve year old girl?
Courtney from Study Moose
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