As evidence is being collected about the assault on Mrs. Joe, there is a general consensus that one of the escaped convicts is to blame. There was a convict’s leg iron found at the scene of the crime. The attacker struck Mrs. Joe from the back and didn’t take anything in the house.
A ship prison guard is summoned and he tells the police that the discovered leg-iron would not have been worn by a convict who had escaped recently. The leg-iron is of an older generation.
In his mind, Pip suspects either Orlick or the mysterious man who gave him the two one-pound notes. Orlick has a great alibi, since he was out about town, but Pip remembers seeing him hiding by the side of the road the night of Mrs. Joe’s assault. Pip also knows that if the mysterious man were to have asked Mrs. Joe for his money, she would have given to him all along. She had intended to do so from the beginning.
Pip realizes that the leg-iron was the leg-iron that his convict has severed and left on the marshes those many years before. Pip feels like an accessory to his sister’s assault, and he feels REALLY guilty.
Mrs. Joe has lost her hearing, and she can’t move or talk without great difficulty. Her vision is also really messed up. The family gives her a chalk board so that she can express her thoughts, needs, and emotions, but they have a hard time figuring out what she writes/draws.
Fortunately, Biddy comes to live with the Gargerys, and she understands Mrs. Joe really well.
One day, Mrs. Joe draws a picture of a hammer. It takes Joe, Pip, and Biddy a long time to figure out what she wants, but Biddy realizes that she is asking for Orlick.
Orlick is brought to Mrs. Joe, and she acts so warmly around him, as though she were a young child trying to please a father. Orlick feels super awkward about the whole thing. From then on, Orlick is made to visit her every single day.