What happened during and after the robbery at Chertsey in Oliver Twist?

Quick answer:

During the unsuccessful robbery attempt at Chertsey, Oliver tries to refuse to participate and gets shot by a resident of the targeted house. Afterward, Toby and Sikes leave the unconscious boy in a ditch.

Expert Answers

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The bungled robbery attempt at Chertsey is described in chapter 22 of Oliver Twist, and the story resumes in chapter 25. Until they arrive at the house that Sikes plans to rob, Oliver does not know why he was brought along on the trip. Outside the house, Toby tells him that they will hoist him up so he can enter through a window. Disregarding his protestations, they do just that. Sikes has a gun and points it at Oliver, threatening to shoot him if he does not comply. Once inside the house, Oliver is supposed to go to the front door, open it, and let in the others. However, a sudden cry startles him, and he drops the lantern he was carrying. The noise wakes up the residents in the house, some of whom are also armed. They exchange gunfire with Sikes’s crew, and Oliver gets shot in the arm. The others pick him up and carry him as they rush away from the house.

Other events are recounted in the next two chapters, and the burglary plot thread is picked up again in chapter 25. Toby arrives at the thieves’ hangout and tells Fagin what happened. Neither Oliver not Sikes is with him. In their haste to escape, carrying the boy was a liability and they left him in a ditch. Crackit does not even know if he is still alive.

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