Chapter 16 Summary
Isabel lies awake that night, thinking. She feels sure that Madam will manage to sell Ruth eventually. Now more than ever, Isabel must find her way out of Madam’s control. That means getting out of New York.
If Isabel gives the rebels information about the plot to kill General Washington, then they will surely feel grateful enough to save her and Ruth from the Locktons. But Isabel’s last attempt to spy for Curzon’s master, Bellingham, ended badly. She worries that Bellingham may not trust her again. This time, she must take her evidence directly to an officer in the Continental Army.
When she is sure that the Locktons are asleep, Isabel sneaks up from the cellar and enters the library. She quietly unlocks Master Lockton’s drawer and finds the paper that lists the names of the loyalists involved in the assassination plan. When she has it, she sneaks out into the dark streets and makes her way toward the Loyalist camp.
At the camp, Isabel asks a sentry to let her speak with Colonel Regan, an officer Bellingham once mentioned. The sentry seems doubtful, but he takes her to Regan’s secretary, who waves off her story and refuses to take her to his boss. When the sentry tries to lead Isabel away, she refuses to go. “They want to kill the general!” she says. “I have proof.”
As it happens, Colonel Regan is nearby, and he has heard about this plan from another spy already today. He calls her over to speak to him, and she informs him that she is offering her information in a trade. She asks him to find a way to return her and her sister to Rhode Island in exchange for her information. He does not exactly promise to do this, but he does say that he will review her claims about her freedom if her information proves useful.
Colonel Regan calls a few trusted men to hear Isabel’s story and read the list of names that she has brought. When she finishes explaining what she heard, the men's opinions are divided. Half of the men think the threat is real, and the other half think that the loyalists are trying to trick them. Regan believes in the threat. He asks Isabel to return the paper to the place where she found it so that her master will not know that he is under suspicion.
Isabel promises to do this, and to return to the rebel camp if she hears any more information. Then she asks if Colonel Regan will help her and Ruth get home. Colonel Regan glances at his men and then says, “I shall do what is in my power.” With that, he sends her back to the Locktons’ house.