Chapter 13 Summary
The following morning, Master Lockton is released from prison. Isabel is just carrying Madam’s chamber pot downstairs when he bursts into the house. He looks dirty and exhausted, but he does not seem suspicious of Isabel. He orders her to tell Becky to get him some food, and then he asks about his wife. When Isabel explains that Madam is packing, Master Lockton runs upstairs.
After Isabel empties and cleans the chamber pot, she goes back inside and hears the Locktons fighting loudly. Ruth and Becky are standing at the foot of the stairs listening, so Isabel does the same. They hear several crashing sounds, and Madam shouts in pain. In a whisper, Isabel suggests asking Lady Seymour for help. Becky says that it is best not to interfere with Master Lockton at times like this. Any intervention just makes him angrier.
When the fight is over, Becky serves Master Lockton some food. Isabel takes some ale and a cold cloth to Madam. Madam claims that she slipped and hurt herself because Isabel spilled candle wax on the floor. Isabel knows that Madam was hurt by Master Lockton and not by anyone's carelessness. Nevertheless, Isabel bows her head and apologizes.
Whenever Master Lockton’s friends come to the house, he makes Isabel wait on them. Isabel’s previous tip to Curzon did not work out, but she has not given up hope on the idea of feeding information to the rebels and thus earning freedom for herself. She listens carefully for some helpful bit of information, but the men do not say anything incriminating. They only gossip and complain. Her only piece of good luck is that Master Lockton and his friends do not suspect her of spying on them. They blame a former friend who mysteriously left town around the time Master Lockton was arrested.
Every day, Isabel goes to the pump to get water. This is her favorite job because it gives her a chance to walk in the fresh air. Sometimes she sees Curzon there, and they walk toward home together. Curzon explains that the rebels need hard evidence before they can lock up Master Lockton. Otherwise Lady Seymour, who knows many powerful people, can get him released. Curzon urges Isabel to search for physical evidence such as letters or maps.
In the next few weeks, Isabel grabs a bit of time to make Ruth a corn cob doll. Isabel also finds a bit of entertainment for herself. One night when the Locktons are asleep, she sneaks into the library and grabs a book, Robinson Crusoe. Her mind has been aching for a good story, and she stays up late devouring this one. When she cannot keep her eyes open any longer, she returns it to its place, but she resolves to finish it someday soon.