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Chapter 6 Summary

The soldiers continue to patrol the streets of the town. They walk in groups of six and speak of how much they miss the things of home, the food and the girls especially.

One cold night in one of the houses, Molly Morden sits working with a ball of yarn. She stops working when she hears a patrol pass by outside. A moment later there is a knock on the door; it is Annie.

Annie explains that Mayor Orden and Doctor Winter and the two Anders boys, Will and Tom, will be coming soon. The Anders boys are trying to escape because their brother Jack was found to have committed an act of sabotage. Although the invaders had already shot and killed Jack, they were still looking for the rest of the family. Annie says they will be arriving in 30 to 45 minutes, and then she leaves.

A short while later, Molly hears another knock at the door. It is Lieutenant Tonder, who says he wants to come in and stay a little while and just talk. Molly lets him in. She asks Tonder if he is lonely. Tonder says, "I’m lonely to the point of illness. I’m lonely in the quiet and the hatred." Molly tells him he can stay for fifteen minutes.

They talk for a little while. Molly asks Tonder if he wants her to like him. He admits that he does. He says that he has been watching her and shows her a poem he claims to have written for her. Molly reads it and asks if he really wrote it, and Tonder admits that he had not, that it was by a poet named Heine.

They talk and laugh a little more. Molly becomes nervous, knowing that the Mayor and the rest will be arriving soon. As Molly talks, Tonder realizes that it was her husband he helped to kill as part of the firing squad. As he leaves, Tonder asks if he can come back, and Molly replies that she doesn't know.

Immediately after Tonder leaves, Annie arrives. She questions Molly suspiciously about the man she saw leave her house. Molly tells Annie that she is not helping the enemy. Then the Anders boys arrive and talk to Molly briefly. Mayor Orden and Doctor Winter arrive and discuss the Anders boys’ escape plan: They plan to steal Mr. Corell’s boat and kidnap him at about midnight. Will Anders says, “It isn’t good to see [Mr. Corell] in the streets . . . and it’s better if he disappears at sea.”

Then the Mayor begins telling the boys why he wanted to see them before they left. "We want to fight them and we can’t. They’re using hunger on the people now. Hunger brings weakness. You boys...

(The entire section is 688 words.)