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Flash forward a month or so, and the local men are routinely meeting at the Wood’s home to discuss the political situation – and what to do about it.
The women overhear the talking, often much of it arguing or yelling. That night William joins the men. Kit wonders what he is doing there, and Judith informs Kit that William came over to Uncle Matthew’s way of thinking a while back. (How did Kit miss that? Or did William simply not mention it to her?)
More shouting from the men and there is debate over whether or not to submit to the new governor or resist him with force. What will happen to the charter and their free commonwealth?
The men eventually leave and Uncle Matthew tells the family that they will spend Sabbath praying for patience. Uncle Matthew also explains the importance of rights to Aunt Rachel.
Later that night Judith and Kit discuss the situation. Will there be violence? Kit mentions the strength of the Royal Fleet. Judith mentions that Dr. Bulkeley (the Royalist loyalist) says that the charter “was never intended to be as free as they have made it” (15.25).
Kit wonders where John stands on all this, and Judith laughingly says that, between Uncle Matthew and Dr. Bulkeley, John is as confused as ever.
The next day Governor Andros does indeed come to town and Judith and Kit venture down to the docks to see him. Kit thrills to see all of those red coated soldiers, but the rest of the crowd is not as delighted. There is only respectful silence.
Later that night, after all of the family has gone to bed, there is a knock on the door. It’s none other than William Ashby who has come to tell Uncle Matthew that the charter is safe.
William explains that, during the meeting of the governor, the lights went out and the charter was taken. The governor was not rattled, as he knew the paper would not be found.
He also mentions that Gersholm Bulkeley had been appointed a Justice of the Peace in reward for his loyalty. Uncle Matthew thanks him for coming.
Uncle Matthew tells the women who were listening on the staircase that they can go back to bed now. All is well.
Going to bed, Kit makes a joke about the charter being snatched by spirits (it’s All Hallows Eve, after all), but Judith responds that New England doesn’t celebrate that holiday. Plus, she adds, William knows where the charter is.
Kit feels snubbed, though she does feel proud of her uncle for how he handled the situation.