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Summary of events in Chapters 3-16 of The Cay


In chapters 3-16 of The Cay, Phillip and Timothy are stranded on a small cay after their ship is torpedoed. Timothy teaches Phillip survival skills, and their bond deepens despite initial racial tensions. Phillip becomes blind, and Timothy's guidance becomes crucial. They face challenges like hurricanes and limited resources, ultimately fostering a deep friendship and mutual dependence.

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What events occur in chapters 12-15 of The Cay?

After Timothy and Phillip have been on the island about a month, Timothy is stricken with a bout of malaria. Although there is not much he can do, Phillip tries to nurse him through the fever and delirium. Timothy recovers, but "never really regain(s) his strength" (Chapter 12).

Realizing that he might "be poorly again some marnin'", Timothy increases his efforts to help Phillip be able to survive on his own if the need should arise.  He teaches him to fish, and Phillip finds that he is "learning to do things all over again, by touch and feel".  With growing confidence, he volunteers to climb to the top of a coconut tree to fetch some coconuts, something that Timothy cannot do because of his age.  When he succeeds in getting the fruit, Timothy is ecstatic, and Phillip feels that "it (is) almost as if (he'd) graduated from the survival course that Timothy (has) been putting (him) through".  That night, Phillip realizes how much he appreciates Timothy, who seems "only kind and strong" (Chapter 13).

One day in July it is oppressively hot on the island, and the air is eerily still.  A wave cracks upon the rocks like a rifle shot, and Timothy warns that "a veree bad starm is comin'...a tempis'".  The two begin massive preparations for the coming hurricane, lashing their water keg at the top of a palm tree at the highest point on the island, along with a box containing their knife and everything else they have of value. Timothy loops and ties a rope securely around the same tree; in case the freak storm is exceptionally severe, he and Phillip will have to secure themselves to the tree and ride it out (Chapter 14).

The storm hits with heavy rain and crashing surf, and as the winds increase, the hut is blown away.  Timothy and Phillip lie flat on the ground for hours, "taking the storm's punishment", and when the sea begins to reach them, they race for the hilltop and loop their arms into the ropes they have secured to their palm.  Timothy stands behind Phillip, sheltering him with his body, and the two endure the driving wind and rain as the water rises about their feet.  Both of them eventually lose consciousness before the storm's fury, then finally, the tempest abates, and Phillip, reviving, releases himself and Timothy from the ropes.  Timothy's back "has been cut to ribbons by the wind", and Phillip can do nothing but lie beside him, holding his hand.  Before dawn, Timothy dies, and Phillip is left, "blind and alone on a forgotten cay" (Chapter 15).

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Can you provide a summary of Chapters 3-16 in The Cay?

    Phillip Enright is a young man living in the Dutch West Indies who survives a shipwreck and is then blinded in the Theodore Taylor World War II novel, The Cay. Phillip's father is an oil company executive in Willemstad, Curacao. As German U-boats threaten the island, Phillip and his mother decide to head to safety in Miami. But their ship is torpedoed in April 1942, and the two are separated. After being hit on the head, Phillip awakes to find himself adrift on a raft with an old black man, Timothy, and a cat. Soon, his vision weakens, and he realizes that he is blind and must rely entirely on Timothy, a veteran sailor from St. Thomas.  
    But Phillip is not comfortable around black people, and he does not trust or respect Timothy, even after the old man saves him when he falls from the raft into shark-infested waters. After being adrift for several days, Timothy spots a small island and leads the raft toward shore. Timothy predicts a rescue soon.

"We mebbe 'ere two, tree days. We be libin comfortable."

But they soon realize they are on a cay known for its treacherous reefs, and boats rarely visit the area. Phillip becomes angry that they have not stayed on the raft, but Timothy knows that the sharks are more dangerous than the isolation of the island.
    Weeks turn into months as the two count the days by placing pebbles in a jar. Phillip slowly begins to accept both Timothy and the limitations of his disability, and Timothy teaches Phillips how to get along by himself on the isle. Then one July day, Timothy notices strange signs in the sky. It is the approach of a hurricane. Timothy prepares for the worst, and when the storm hits, he lies atop the boy to protect him from the wind and flying debris. When waves reach their high ground, Timothy lashes the two to a palm tree, again protecting Phillip against the raging storm. They survive, but Timothy is badly hurt, and he dies the next morning. At the end of Chapter 15, Phillip and the cat are all alone.

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