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The Trial

The Trial


by Franz Kafka

The Trial Chapter 5 Summary

The Flogger

  • K. is back at the bank several nights later, working late. He walks past the junk room, and hears groans. Curious, he opens the door.
  • To his utter shock, three men are in the room. One of them appears to be in a leather vest. The two other men plead with K. to save them. It's only then that he recognizes them as the two guards who arrested him a couple of weeks ago, and he notices that the leather guy has a rod.
  • According to Willem, one of the guards, K.'s testimony at the courts about the corruptness of the guards had resulted in their punishment, which is apparently to be flogged in the junk room of K.'s bank.
  • The flogger tells the guards that they should take off their clothes in preparation for a beating, but K. interrupts him and offers him a bribe. The flogger refuses the bribe, and strikes the guards.
  • As Franz begins to scream, K. grows concerned that the other workers at the bank will see what's going on, so he steps out of the room to open a window. When an assistant asks what the sound was, K. lies and says it was the sound of a dog howling.
  • K. doesn't feel like going back into the junk room, so he heads home.
  • The next day, out of curiosity, K. stops by the junk room as he leaves work. To his surprise, the three men are still there. K. slams the door, and tells the assistants to clean out the junk room as soon as possible.

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