Study Guide

The Astonishing Life of Octavian Nothing: Traitor to the Nation, Volume I: The Pox Party Part 3, Chapter 2

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Part 3, Chapter 2

  • From a dairy entry of some farmer in Acton, Massachusetts:
  • It's May 3, 1775; it's cloudy and wet.
  • The farmer is out in the fields when a N**** boy asks for work.
  • (The boy, by the way, is obviously Octavian, but the farmer doesn't know that.)
  • The farmer's trying to pull out stumps to make a new field, so he asks Octavian if he knows how.
  • Octavian says yes, but he clearly doesn't know what he's doing, so the farmer asks him if he can chop wood.
  • Octavian says yes again, but again he's obviously lying.
  • The farmer figures out that Octavian can't do anything outdoorsy, so he tells him to run or he'll whip Octavian.
  • Octavian just turns and walks slowly across the field.
  • The farmer concludes that he and John pulled the rest of the stumps out; that the Jersey's baby is sick; and that, even though the rain is hard, it loosened the mud and let him pull the stumps out more easily.

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