Study Guide

The True Confessions of Charlotte Doyle Chapter 4

By Avi

Chapter 4

  • Charlotte wakes to find the dirk on the floor. She grabs the knife, hoping to return it to Zachariah, and heads for the deck.
  • One of the sailors, Dillingham, sees the dirk in Charlotte's hand. The next time Charlotte looks around, he has left the deck.
  • Charlotte heads for the galley where she finds Zachariah and offers him the dirk. He won't take it, but instead offers her tea (again) and hard tack (a hard cake that functioned as sailors' bread). Zachariah reveals that she has been asleep in her cabin for four days.
  • As Charlotte eats, Zachariah tells her why he's so insistent upon her keeping the knife: the crewmembers on the Seahawk have an ax to grind with Captain Jaggery. On a previous voyage, the captain beat a man called Mr. Cranick so badly that he lost his arm. The crew thinks Jaggery is a tyrant. Not being able to obtain justice with the admiralty courts on land, they now want revenge on the sea.
  • Charlotte doesn't initially believe Zachariah's story, though she recognizes the name of Mr. Cranick from the roll call the first day on deck.
  • Zachariah tells Charlotte that the same crew from the previous voyage is on board the ship because Captain Jaggery couldn't get any other sailors to work for him. Charlotte recalls her experience with the two porters on the dock in Liverpool on the day she boarded the Seahawk.
  • Zachariah reminds Charlotte that the crew knows that Captain Jaggery is an employee of her father.
  • Mr. Hollybrass, the first mate, appears suddenly and invites Charlotte to tea in Captain Jaggery's quarters.