The sound of steps surprises the group, and Hetty's appearance with an Indian stuns the three people. Deerslayer quickly makes Chingachgook hide. Hetty, telling about her adventures among the Mingos, believes that the Indians are willing to attend church services aboard the ark. Judith and Deerslayer are skeptical. Noticing the poorly constructed raft in which Hetty and the Mingo guide arrived, Deerslayer realizes that the Indians are in no position to attack the ark. He shows one ivory chess piece, a rook (castle) carved like an elephant, to the Mingo, who is elated by it. Deerslayer explains that two of these figures will be given in exchange for the prisoners. The Mingo departs happily with the message, and Deerslayer ponders about possible arguments in the coming negotiations. Hetty's news about Hist makes Chingachgook optimistic about rescuing the Indian girl:
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Deerslayer, people. Deerslayer, Deerslayer ponders, it. Deerslayer