Study Guide

The Revenant: A Novel of Revenge Chapter 4: August 28, 1823

By Michael Punke

Chapter 4: August 28, 1823

  • The group's progress is halted by "the steep face of a sandstone cliff" at a bend in the Grand River (1.4.1). Harris has already passed through this area, but the main crew is stuck at an impasse.
  • Captain Henry decides to bring Glass's body back to an easier spot in the river to cross while the rest of the crew waits up ahead. Fitzgerald grumbles as usual.
  • They travel like this for three days, with Glass slipping in and out of half-consciousness. Finally, they set up camp.
  • Henry realizes that they've only traveled forty miles in the past three days—half of what they'd typically traverse in that amount of time.
  • Henry knows that Glass is slowing them down, and that's bad. Real bad. It's bad because it puts his men in even greater danger, and it's bad because it limits how much money they can make.
  • That night, Henry announces his decision: he will pay two men $70 each (a third of their yearly pay) to stay behind and care for Glass while he dies, after which they'll all meet back up.
  • After a long silence, Fitzgerald volunteers. He just wants the cash. Harris tries to volunteer, too, being Glass's buddy, but Henry needs his scouting skills in the days ahead.
  • Finally, Jim Bridger volunteers, to the surprise of everyone involved. So it's all set—everyone but Bridger and Fitzgerald are leaving at dawn.