Summary and Analysis Chapter 3
Joktan: a red-haired boy who is a member of Rosh’s rebels.
Daniel and Samson continue to work together, Samson relying totally on his appointed caretaker. However, Samson proves to be reliable and obedient. His eager servitude makes Daniel wonder if the man really knows he is free. Daniel cannot discover the least bit of information about his enormous companion. The other rebels in the camp make fun of Samson, but Daniel thinks they might be teasing him as well. He feels rejected and isolated.
One day, Rosh barks that Daniel has a visitor. Ebol brings in Simon the Zealot. Daniel is surprised to see him but grateful that his message has been delivered. Daniel takes pride in showing his handiwork to a fellow blacksmith.
Simon has news, both good and bad. First, he tells Daniel that Amalek has died. He need not worry about serving his remaining four years, for Amalek passed away with no one to whom he could pass on his “property.” Daniel is free to return to his grandmother and sister.
Daniel, though, is not sure he wants to go. He knows that a return home will force him to care for his aging grandmother and mentally challenged sister and to a life of tradesman’s work. He prefers freedom and purpose on the mountain.
Eventually, Daniel is persuaded to return, if just for a visit. He finds that Samson is following them, and Daniel orders him back to the cave. Daniel tries to get Simon to join Rosh’s cause, but the older blacksmith refuses, saying that he is waiting for “the one … who will lead us” and that he and Rosh “don’t see eye to eye.” Daniel feels Simon has insulted Rosh when he says, “I prefer to earn my own bread and meat.”
Daniel finds his grandmother and sister nearly destitute, but a Sabbath dinner has been laid out, awaiting his return. Leah does not seem to recognize her brother. Daniel does not want to fully acknowledge their need for his help, and he finds himself homesick for Rosh, and even Samson, the family he has chosen rather than the one into which he was born.
It is a pivotal time for Daniel. He must make a tough decision: stay and fight for the cause he believes in or be tied down to his family who desperately needs his help.
The only person who seems to care...
(The entire section is 613 words.)