|The story of Miss Milner in Elizabeth Inchbald`s A Simple Story (1791) can be read as an elaborate testing of exactly what the valences of consent might imply for a female subject, formerly a minor and guard, to become an equal partner of a marriage contract. Miss Milner`s impetuous obsession with subduing her lover to her will is more than a personal psychological flaw. She will only enter into marriage once she has established that they are equals as they enter into a contract that enforces inequality. Submission is a willed decision, based on a faculty that retains the prerogative of choice, hence always resting on the potentiality of disruption and revolution. Meanwhile, the story of her daughter Lady Matilda can be read as an elaborate testing of exactly what the valences of consent might mean for a female subject, a minor and a daughter, who is unfairly subjected to paternal persecution despite her complete compliance with his Gothic and unfatherly rule. Matilda`s willful adherence to her father`s injunctions rightfully earns his belated protection, and she is given sole power to determine the matter of paternal inheritance through her will. Re-examined in this manner, both mother and daughter in A Simple Story can be read as "willing" women who take serious and consequential positions within the same story.