Study Guide

Among the Hidden Chapter 16

By Margaret Peterson Haddix

Chapter 16

  • That night at dinner, Luke's head is full of his afternoon adventures.
  • He is so excited about meeting Jen that he has to be extra careful to not tell everyone about it.
  • Earlier in the afternoon Luke and Jen had discussed setting up a signal to each other alerting when it would be safe to meet, but it seems like everything that would be useful to Luke is off-limits.
  • Jen sarcastically wonder if he's ever heard of disobeying and Luke promptly points out how he's made it over to her house. Touché, Luke, touché.
  • Back to figuring out the signal, Jen and Luke settle on setting up a light by the barn, despite this also being against the Garner family rules.
  • After they run through Luke's life story, he gets to learn about Jen's.
  • First off, she was no accident. Her parents had planned to have a third child (specifically a girl). And luckily, her parents had the money to do it.
  • Luke's parents, however, did not.
  • Jen realizes this when she offhandedly says, "I didn't think they paid for you" (16.46). Ouch, low blow.
  • But we can't blame her too much. Just as Luke has never met another person outside his family, Jen has never met a non-Baron.
  • In fact, she likes how Luke is different from her—and she thinks he can help with the rally.
  • But right after piquing Luke's interest (and ours) Jen takes it all back, not sure if she can disclose all the rally information just yet.
  • Aw, man! Massive letdown.
  • The convo quickly veers to Jen's dad (technically stepdad) and how he's a lawyer—a government lawyer.
  • That's right. A government lawyer has a third child.
  • Unfortunately, Jen and Luke's initial meeting had to end since he needs to scurry back to his house before anyone else comes home.
  • On their way out, Luke notices some drops of blood on the carpet after he scratched his hand breaking into the Talbots'.
  • Without a moment's hesitation, Jen thrusts her hand through the wires so that she'll have a scratch to show her parents.
  • This freaks Luke out a little, and he runs all the way home without pausing to look or crawl or mask himself in anyway.
  • Flash back to dinner, Luke realizes how careless that was.
  • But he can't stop thinking how Jen would injure herself to protect him after they just met