Pip’s first step at changing his life is to ask Biddy to teach him everything she knows. Biddy is willing to do it.
After his lesson, he goes to The Three Jolly Bargemen to collect Joe. Joe is with Mr. Wopsle and a stranger. The stranger offers to buy Joe and Mr. Wopsle a drink. Joe generally doesn’t like people buying him drinks, but he accepts as not to be bad company.
The stranger keeps eyeing Pip. Joe gives details about Mr. Wopsle’s vocation. The stranger ascertains that he is the clerk at the church that is out in the marshes, attached to the cemetery.
The stranger asks if there are many gypsies in this area, but Joe says they only get the occasional escaped convict. He tells the stranger about the arrest that they had witnessed. The stranger then asks Joe’s relationship to Pip. Mr. Wopsle takes over the explanation when Joe's proves to be unsatisfactory.
Pip notices that the stranger is stirring his rum with a file. Pip realizes that the file belongs to Joe, the very one he gave to the convict. He deduces that the stranger knows the convict.
When Joe prepares to leave, the stranger gives Pip a shilling. When they get home, Pip’s sister unwraps the package the shilling is in, expecting it to be counterfeit. Not only is it genuine, it is wrapped in two one pound notes. Joe takes them back to the Jolly Bargemen to return them to the owner. He returns some time later, saying the stranger had left. He left a message for him at the pub.
Pip worries about the money and the stranger, fearing the convict will come after him with the file.