Mr. White was fascinated with the monkey’s paw. When the Sergeant-Major threw it into the fire, he hastily retrieved it. He wanted the three wishes. The Sergeant-Major warned him about the consequences and, “…pressed me again to throw it away.” (pg 3) But Mr. White was determined to test the monkey’s paw for the three wishes. However, when it came time to make a wish, Mr. White said, “I don’t know what to wish for, and that’s a fact…it seems to me I’ve got all I want.” (pg 3)
So his son tells him, jokingly, to wish for two hundred pounds. Nothing immediately happens, so everyone thinks it is a hoax. However, the next day, a man arrives from Maw and Meggins. He informs Mr. and Mrs. White that their son got caught in some machinery at work and died. The firm admits no liability for the accident, but due to the son’s dedicated services, the company wanted to give Mr. and Mrs. White some compensation. It was two hundred pounds. Their wish had come true.
The death of their son hit them both hard. Suddenly the old woman yelled out that they could use the monkey’s paw to wish their son back to life. The old man wasn’t sure he wanted to wish his son back to life since the son had been so badly mangled in the machinery that he didn’t even recognize him. He is reluctant to use the monkey’s paw again for fear of what may happen. However, he does as she wishes and wishes his son alive again.
They wait patiently for a response to the wish, and then there is a knock on the door. The old man is afraid to open it, although his wife is eager to see her son again. Finally the third knock is very loud, and the woman insists on opening the door. The man is so fearful of what is on the other side of the door that he grabs the talisman and makes his third and final wish: that his son not come back to life. The knocking suddenly ceases and the road outside the house is deserted.