Chapter 6 Summary

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Kino and Juana escape the town in the dark. A swift breeze stirs the sand in such a manner that their footprints are erased as they travel. To avoid being seen, they walk along the outskirts of the town instead of through the center of it. Once they leave town, the wind subsides and they realize that, on the next day, their footprints will be evident in the sand. Still, they walk all night and only turn off of the major roadway at daybreak. Kino finds a suitable place for Juana and Coyotito to rest. Then he returns to the main road and uses a piece of brush to sweep away the footprints that indicate their direction of travel.

Kino and Juana prepare for a short rest. Kino thinks he hears unsettling noises. He tells Juana to keep the baby quiet while he investigates the sounds. He discovers trackers who have been sent to follow them. He sees them as they approach the place where he and Juana turned off of the main road. The trackers pause but continue past the intersection, and Kino returns to Juana and Coyotito.

Kino informs Juana that he has seen the trackers and he knows that they will eventually find them. He wants her to leave him, taking the baby with her. He plans to lead the trackers in another direction. However, Juana persuades him to reconsider. She suggests that the trackers will kill Kino once they find him because their goal is to steal the pearl. She also tells Kino that the trackers will never allow her or the baby to live. She says that they will kill them all and leave, taking the pearl for themselves. Kino tries to convince her to reconsider, but he is unable to change her mind. He takes her and little Coyotito to a cave to hide, then he goes to a place where he hopes to be able to protect them.

As night falls, Kino sees the trackers and he hopes to wrest the gun from them. He believes that he has a better chance of defending his family if he can prevent the tracker who is holding the gun from discovering them. As he approaches the trackers, he prepares to jump onto the one holding the rifle. However, the moonlight shines down and he decides to wait. Although he has taken off the white shirt he was wearing, he knows that he might still be seen in the moonlight, so he hides himself. Just at that moment, one of the trackers thinks that he hears a baby crying. The one holding the rifle suggests that the cry is coming from a coyote, and he fires the rifle to silence the noise.

As the novel closes, a tired and worn Kino and Juana defiantly walk back into town. Kino is carrying a rifle and Juana is carrying a blood-soaked shawl with Coyotito in it. The tracker’s shot has torn of the top of little Coyotito’s head. The couple is finally in agreement about the pearl.

Kino and Juana walk directly to the ocean, past all the curious and questioning faces of the townspeople. The couple comes to a halt as they reach the water. They take one final look at the “pearl of the world”—it is ugly now—and they throw it back into the ocean.

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Chapter 5 Summary