In Chapter 1, many of the guests for the party celebrating the one-hundredth anniversary of the opening of the Ten Booms' watch shop have arrived, and Corrie bicycles hurriedly to her sister Nollie's house to borrow some cups. As she "zip(s) around the corner of Nollie's block, she says,
"How could I foresee...that one summer day, when the hyacinths in the commercial bulb flats nearby were ripe and brown, I would brake my bicycle here and stand with my heart thudding in my throat, daring to go no closer for fear of what was taking place behind Nollie's starched curtains?" (Chapter 1).
Sure enough, a few years later, Corrie again finds herself
"at the corner of Bos en Hoven Straat...lean(ing) (her) bike against a lamppost and (standing) panting, (her) heart throbbing in (her) throat...as casually as (she is) able, (she) stroll(s) up the sidewalk towards the house...When (she gets) to the corner...the door open(s) and Nollie (comes) out. Behind her walk(s) a man in a brown business suit. A minute later a second man appear(s), half pulling, half supporting Annaliese. The young woman's face (is) white as chalk...(Corrie thinks) she (will) faint. The car doors (slam)...and they (are) gone".
In the intervening years between the party and the second incident at Nollie's house, the Germans have occupied the Netherlands and are beginning to systematically eliminate the Jewish population there. The Ten Booms have been sheltering a number of Jews at the Beje and other places, participating in an underground devoted to saving as many of them as they can. On the day in question, Corrie has been summoned to Nollie's house by old Katrien, who sobs that Nollie has "gone mad". The Nazis have come, and when Nollie had been asked if the Jewish girl, Annaliese, "blonde, beautiful...with...perfect papers", who had taken refuge with her is a Jew, Nollie had unhesitatingly answered "Yes". In fulfillment of the earlier foreshadowing, Corrie immediately bicycles over to Nollie's house, terrified about what may be happening inside. Standing outside the house, she sees Annaliese being taken away to the old Jewish theater in Amsterdam, "from which Jews (are being) transported to extermination camps in Germany and Poland", and learns that Nollie herself is being taken to the police station.
Corrie, in loving consternation, is aghast that her sister's rigid sense of honesty should have resulted in this. Nollie, however, is confident that God will let no ill come to Annaliese because Nollie has obeyed Him. As it turns out, Nollie is right. A few days later, Corrie learns that Annaliese has been rescued from the Jewish theater, and is free (Chapter 8).