Study Guide

Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children Chapter 5

By Ransom Riggs

Chapter 5

  • Jacob describes the morning as looking like "one of those heavily retouched photos that come loaded as wallpaper on new computers" (5.1)—or perhaps like one of the photos in this book.
  • He returns to the house and starts exploring, going through old books, toys, and clothes; it is "as if time had stopped the night they died" (5.5). Creepy.
  • Speaking of creepy, Jacob feels like he's being watched, but he keeps exploring.
  • He finds an old suitcase under a bed, but it's empty.
  • Jacob says he feels empty, too, and he starts crying.
  • It starts raining outside, even though it's still sunny.
  • Jacob notices something else in the room he's sobbing in: a trunk under another bed.
  • He tries to pull it out, but it's super heavy.
  • Once he shimmies it out, he can't open it, because it's locked.
  • Jacob gets a chair leg and hits the lock over and over again until it breaks. The chair leg, that is.
  • A light bulb goes off in Jacob's head: He doesn't have to break the leg if he can break the trunk itself.
  • It takes a lot of effort but he manages to push it to the balcony, and right over the edge.
  • It smashes… right through the floorboards and into the basement.
  • Jacob gathers his nerves to go into the dark, scary basement and uses his cellphone as a flashlight to find the shattered trunk.
  • Photos have spilled from the trunk all over the floor. Jacob gathers them up, recognizing some of the "freaks" (5.46).
  • As he's sifting through the photos, he hears footsteps above… Jacob accidentally shakes something loose, drawing the attention of whomever is upstairs.
  • A voice calls out, "Abe? Is that you?" (5.53). Either she's looking for a dead president or a dead Grandpa.
  • A lantern illuminates above, and Jacob looks up to see a half dozen kids staring down at him.
  • He recognizes them from the photographs, but when they see him, they run.
  • Jacob gives chase, running after a girl in a white dress, but she disappears into the mist.
  • Jacob, who is a master tracker all of a sudden, is able to follow her footsteps to a big stone cairn. Hmm, could be where Cairnholm gets its name…
  • He crawls through the narrow tunnel and ends up in a tiny room at the end of it.
  • No girl, though.
  • Jacob figures he must really be losing it and that he just imagined the girl.
  • He really wants to just go home now, so he crawls, dejected, out of the cave.
  • Outside, he's "blinded by the light" (5.77), which is weird because it was rainy and dark when he went into the cairn.
  • Before someone comes along to wrap him up like a deuce, he heads back for town; the path is completely dry, which is also weird.
  • Town is strangely quiet, because none of the generators seem to be running.
  • And then a horse clops by.
  • Everyone is staring strangely at Jacob, so he rushes for the Priest Hole.
  • A different barkeep is there, and he swears he's never seen Jacob's dad, and that Jacob doesn't have a room there.
  • The men in the bar decide that Jacob is an American spy.
  • Jacob runs away from the bar and down an alley, where someone grabs him and puts a knife to his neck.
  • It's the girl in the white dress—she thinks he's a wight, and wants to kill him.
  • Jacob says he can prove he's not a bad guy, and he pulls out the letter from Miss Peregrine to show her.
  • She drags him into an old shack, where Jacob notices the calendar: September 3, 1940.
  • Realizing he's somehow gone back in time, he passes out.
  • When he wakes up, the girl in the white dress is talking to an invisible boy.
  • They introduce themselves: Emma and Millard Nullings.
  • They say that people are searching all the houses for Jacob, so they have to escape.
  • A group of men chases them through the streets, but Millard pulls a rope across the alleyway and trips them up.
  • Emma and Jacob go to the Priest Hole, where the barman doesn't recognize Jacob at all for some reason.
  • Emma orders a drink, pours it on the bar, and manages to light it on fire with her bare hands.
  • She drags Jacob toward the fireplace, where they pry open a secret crawl space: the priest hole.
  • Emma generates a ball of flame with her hand and leads the way through the dark passage.
  • They meet Millard at a horse-drawn wagon, and they hide in the back.
  • Millard tells Jacob that they're in a loop, and the same thing happens day after day after day.
  • Emma shushes them as the cart starts to move.