Study Guide

Tomorrow, When the War Began Chapter 7

By John Marsden

Chapter 7

  • One by one, the friends decide to visit each remaining house. Corrie's is first.
  • It's also empty, and she cries and Kevin comforts her. Ellie respects him for that, even though he isn't generally her fav.
  • Finding food to eat before moving on is like going on a scavenger hunt—a little old, stale bread here, a few veggies from a garden there, a bit of not-totally-disgusting salami.
  • While Ellie works on the plumbing situation (in hopes of actually flushing the toilet), she notices a fax.
  • Turns out the fax is from Corrie's dad—in it, he tells her that he doesn't know what's going on with the military but she should hide out in the woods and not come back until she's sure it's safe.
  • From that moment on, the gang takes the situation seriously.
  • Getting to Robyn's very late at night, they find the town in total darkness except for the Showground, which is brightly lit. A truck is rolling out of it.
  • Homer suggests they all split up on separate missions so they don't all get caught, and with that, the group makes a plan to scout around and meet back up later that night.
  • Kevin, Corrie, and Ellie all take off to spy on the Showground, while Homer and Fi check out Fi's house and Robyn and Lee visit Lee's.
  • Tripping over stones and things in the dark, Ellie finds it hard to be silent. It's a high-pressure situation, you know?
  • While walking down the path, Ellie thinks about a whole bunch of things that could have happened or gone wrong; she hopes her dad didn't try to fight back. She also thinks about how she loves her rural life.
  • Once the trio arrives just outside the Showground, they plan to be as careful as possible—they won't be splitting up, though, since they're too scared to go it alone.
  • The group sneaks through the trees, and then Ellie does the bravest thing she's ever done: She takes a step into the terrifying light that might reveal her to whoever is at the showground.
  • Making their way toward a good spying spot, Ellie sees guards in uniform. Anger and fear bubble up, but she looks around to get an idea of what's going on.
  • She notices that everything looks like it should for a show—there are lots of cars in the lot, and food trucks and tents are set up—except it's all guarded.
  • The spy gang watches as Ellie's teacher from primary school walks out of a tent with his hands up and uses the restroom.
  • While the friends run back to the path, they are shot at. Whoa.
  • Soldiers come after the kids, chasing them with guns toward an abandoned house.
  • It is quite dark out, and they hide in a large garden space.
  • Even though this seems kind of safe, it isn't safe enough, so they form a plan.
  • Noticing a lit torch, the three spies work fast to find matches and a hammer and chisel.
  • Quietly they push a ride-on lawn mower close to where the sentries will have to walk, take off the gas cap, and make a trail of gasoline to a place behind a brick wall.
  • To lure the soldiers closer, Ellie whimpers.
  • Once the guards walk past the mower, Ellie fails several times to light a match. She finally succeeds, though, and the mower blows up. Wee.
  • As Ellie, Kevin, and Corrie run off, they hear screams. Ellie can't shake the sound, but still remembers to duck when a truck whizzes by her.
  • Back at the meeting place, Fi and Homer are waiting with seven bikes.
  • Since the last two friends aren't there, everyone hops on a bike and rides as fast as they can to find them.