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Pip returns to
the forge after bringing Magwitch the items he had demanded. During
a miserable Christmas dinner later the same day, he is tormented by
the hypocritical remarks of the dinner guests, who regard him as an
example of the vicious tendencies of all ungrateful children. He
remains terrified that his crime of stealing the food and drink
will come to light before the end of the meal. Pip is
only saved from discovery by the arrival of a group of soldiers
with their sergeant. They are searching for the escaped convicts
and have brought a pair of handcuffs to the forge for repair. Joe,
the blacksmith, mends them and asks permission to join the hunt for
the men. Permission is given and Pip is taken along too.
'I am on a chase in the name of the
king, and I want the blacksmith.'
'You see, blacksmith,' said the
sergeant...'we have had an accident with these...'
Joe threw his eye over them, and
pronounced that the job...would take nearer two hours than
And then they stood about, as