Lettie and Ruthanne walk with their new bud Abilene over to Miss Sadie's while she tells them about the weird story. She also lets them read Hattie Mae's column in the paper.
They leave her there, warning her that Miss Sadie's probably a witch (way to encourage her on her first day of work there), and she heads inside.
Miss Sadie is out back and gets Abilene to start digging a garden for her. The soil is so dry, though, that Abilene can't imagine what she could possibly plant.
As she digs, she asks Miss Sadie about the Ku Klux Klan and Jinx and Ned to get her to continue her story.
Turns out Ned took Jinx to Shady's place, and Shady let him stay with him. Aww, isn't he nice?
Miss Sadie tells her that Manifest was a town of immigrants: people coming to America by boat to make better lives for themselves by working at the coal mine there.
But they didn't realize how horrible the conditions were in the mines and how crazy-hard they work the miners.
And just as Abilene had hoped, Miss Sadie starts into the next part of her story. Yes.
The Art of Distraction, October 27, 1917
And we're back to Miss Sadie's story.
Jinx is actually leading a normal life for once, even going to school in Manifest now.
He's sitting on a bike, waiting for Ned to finish his shift in the mine.
Slowly, groups of miners start coming up in the elevator, grouped by nationality. Devlin, the owner (and head jerk), likes to keep them separated like that.
Speaking of Devlin, he's yelling at a geologist nearby for making some mistake about where exactly the coal is. Nice guy, huh?
And who shows up now, but jerk number two: Lester Burton, the pit boss. He hangs up a notice sent out by the U.S. government.
Yikes. This primary source is a doozy.
The government basically wants people to start spying on any Germans or Austrians in America and reporting anything suspicious.
Feeling the love yet?
Burton makes a big deal out of Ned's unknown background, and then bullies him into taking another shift—right now. After he just came up from a long shift. Man, maybe he should get promoted to jerk number one…
Ned tells Jinx it's because he beats Devlin's son at track meets all the time. It's revenge.
And since they only pay the workers in vouchers for the mine's company store—not money—there's no way for him to move up in the world and get away by working harder or anything.
Jinx tells Ned to meet him at the fair after his second shift, and they can take a look at the fireworks for sale there. That'll cheer him up.
At the fair, Jinx tricks the fireworks salesman into telling him the recipe for the very best firecrackers.
Then Jinx helps Ned outsmart the guy with the shell game and win a dollar. Wow—this kid is good.
He tells Ned it's all about the art of distraction. Then he shows him that he was able to "borrow" one of the firecrackers to get a good look at how it's put together so they can make their own. Dude.