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Tuck Everlasting Chapter 22 Summary

Instructor: Sarah Garrett

Sarah has taught secondary English and holds a master's degree in Curriculum & Instruction

In Chapter 22 of Tuck Everlasting, Winnie contemplates how she can help Mae. Soon Jesse comes to give her an update and she decides to help rescue Mae from the jail.

The Next Day

Chapter 22 begins with a new day. The day is incredibly hot, and Winnie notes that two days before, her family would have made her stay indoors, but not today. Winnie walks downstairs and tells them she's going outside.

Winnie goes to the fence and thinks about Mae being trapped in the jailhouse. She lifts her head and sees a toad, which she is very happy about. Winnie notices that the toad looks extremely thirsty, so she runs inside to ask her grandmother for a bowl of water to give the toad a drink. Her grandmother tells her that toads do not drink water; they absorb it through their skin.

Winnie insists on sprinkling water on the toad. Her grandmother asks where the toad is, and Winnie says it's across the road. Her grandmother does not want Winnie going outside of the fence alone, so she accompanies her. When they get to the fence, Winnie notices that the toad is gone. Her grandmother assures Winnie that because the toad has hopped off, it must be OK. Feeling disappointed and relieved, Winnie pours out the water she brought, and it is immediately sucked into the dry earth.

Because Winnie cannot sprinkle water on the toad, she pours it onto the dry, cracked ground.
dry earth

A Visitor

Winnie's grandmother comments on the intensity of the heat. She uselessly wipes away sweat from her neck, and tells Winnie that she needs to come inside soon. The grandmother leaves and Winnie sits in the grass and begins thinking about Mae. She closes her eyes in exasperation. While her eyes are closed, Jesse comes up to the fence and says, ''Winnie ... you sleeping?''

Winnie opens her eyes and grabs Jesse's hand through the fence. She excitedly asks Jesse what they can do to get Mae out of prison. He explains that Miles has a plan, but Jesse is not convinced it will work. He explains that Miles believes that he can take out the frame around the window bars, and Mae can climb through the window to freedom.

The Tucks plan to free Mae by taking out the frame around the window bars, so she can climb out.
jail bars

Jesse tells Winnie that they are going to try it that night when it gets dark. He admits that it will be hard, since the constable checks on Mae constantly because he is so proud to finally have a criminal. Jesse also tells Winnie that they have been to see Mae, and she seems to be doing well. He admits that the plan will not give them much time to get away, but it is the only plan they have.

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