The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn Chapters 29-32 Summary

In chapter twenty-nine, two new men show up claiming to be the brothers, so the townspeople are suspicious, especially since the supposedly deaf brother has a broken arm and is unable to do any sign language. The King is forced to reveal that the money is missing, and he believes the slaves have taken it. Then they tried to do a handwriting sample to compare to the letters that Peter had received from his brothers, but the new men explain that usually the one with the broken arm writes the letters, so they are unable to prove themselves. Then they decide to verify what was tattooed on the dead man's chest. The King claims it was a thin blue arrow while the new men claim it was his initials, so they decide to go dig up the body to see who is right. The townspeople agree that they will lynch the men that are lying, so Huck keeps trying to sneak away, but can't. Finally, when they lift the lid off the coffin and find the bag of money, Huck takes off and runs to Jim waiting on the raft. He tells him to hurry and leave, but soon hears the King and the Duke coming up behind him.

Chapter thirty begins with the King shaking Huck and screaming at him for trying to escape without them. Huck makes up a lie about how the man who was holding him to him to run, so he did. Then the Duke points out that the King ran off without verifying if Huck was safe, so the King lets it go. The King is shocked that the money was in the coffin after he had been convinced that the slaves stole it. Then he starts wondering if maybe the Duke took it and hid it there, and the Duke wonders the same thing about the King. After a heated argument where the Duke nearly chokes the King to death, the King finally admits to having stolen it just to save himself. Then the King reminds the Duke that in addition to losing out on the dead man's money, they had also put $415 of their own money into that bag to make it an even $6000, so they lost that money too. Huck is thrilled that he escaped any trouble, and after the men fall asleep, he tells Jim the whole story.

In chapter thirty-one, they float down the Mississippi for awhile before the King and the Duke try to stop and scam another town. They do lectures of temperance, a dancing school, missionarying, mesmerizing, and more, but they are still broke. Finally, they arrive at Pikesville where they're thinking about trying the Royal Nonesuch again. Huck ditches them in town and runs to the raft hoping to escape with Jim to find Jim gone. He runs into a boy who tells him that a runaway slave has been brought to Silas Phelps's place. He says there's a two hundred dollar reward for him, so an old fellow was turning him in. Huck goes back to the raft and thinks about writing a letter to his friend, Tom Sawyer, telling him what has happened, but he doesn't. Then he tries writing a letter to Miss Watson explaining where she can find Jim, but he tears it up. Ultimately, he decides that he will steal Jim out of slavery again. On his way to Phelps farm, he sees the Duke putting up a flier for the performance, and Huck gets him to admit to selling Jim, so Huck cries over losing his slave. The Duke starts to tell Huck where to find him then changes his mind and lies about his location. Huck doesn't care because he already knows where Jim is, so he continues on toward the Phelps's.

In chapter thirty-two, Huck is astonished by the reaction he receives upon his arrival at the Phelps house. The woman says, "It's you!" and hugs him. Then she calls her children to meet their cousin, Tom. Huck isn't sure what to do, so he goes along with it. He tells the woman, Aunt Sally, that he came down on a boat and left his baggage when they docked. When her husband comes home, she wants to play a joke on him, so she has Huck hide, then when Huck reveals himself, she says look who it is and her husband, Silas, doesn't seem to know, so she tells him it's Tom Sawyer. This news stuns Huck, who is very excited to realize that he's pretending to be his best friend. He easily answers all of their questions about relatives back home because he knows Tom's family as well as his own.

In these chapters Huck escapes trouble and the King and the Duke who have been holding him back from helping Jim get to the free states. They have also forced them much farther south than Jim and Huck had intended to go. Unfortunately, Huck is in a position where he needs to rescue Jim back before he and Huck can continue on their journey.

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