The Adventures of Tom Sawyer | Study Guide

Mark Twain

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The Adventures of Tom Sawyer | Chapter 28 | Summary



For three days the boys watch for their opportunity. Finally Tom goes to try the door while Huck stands watch. The keys prove unnecessary since the door is unlocked. Inside the room Tom sees Injun Joe passed out on the floor. The boys flee. Since Tom didn't see the treasure or the cross it is to be hidden under, they agree to continue to watch.


Huck is steadfast in his interest despite the danger. Tom still must return home. The line between adventure and real threat is blurring. The boys' characters continue to be highlighted by their actions: Huck stands watch, while Tom enters the room where the killer is.

Here, too, we see that Tom is brave in a way that may come dangerously close to foolishness. He has openly confirmed that he witnessed Injun Joe committing murder. Joe is a wanted man as a result. Tom's interest in treasure, however, overcomes what would be a rational response to the danger of such a close encounter with Injun Joe—namely, flight. He has not outgrown his romantic notions of adventure even in the face of very real danger.

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