Mr. Pancks tells Clennam that Mr. Dorrit is an heir to an estate that was unclaimed and increasing in value. He was now going to be a free man.
Mr. Pancks had taken an interest in Little Dorrit, and his interest had been piqued by the coincidence of two family names he had heard of before being in the same place—the Clennams and the Dorrits. Mr. Dorrit’s tidbits about family history provided clues. Clennam is delighted. Mr. Pancks admits it cost him quite a bit, and he had to take a loan from both Mr. Casby and Mr. Rugg. Arthur assures him that he will be repaid. Mr. Pancks asks him to tell the Dorrits the good news.
Clennam goes to Mr. Casby’s house. He tells Amy Dorrit that her father will be free and will be a rich man. Amy faints. She seems uncomfortable with the idea of being wealthy for herself, but she is pleased about it for her father’s sake.
They go to the Marshalsea and tell Mr. Dorrit the news. He is stunned. Arthur fetches some wine, telling the gathering crowd outside that Mr. Dorrit is a rich man.
Arthur Clennam, when he returns, tells a crying Mr. Dorrit what Mr. Pancks had done on his behalf. Mr. Dorrit agrees to reward him generously. He vows to reward everyone who has been kind to him. Arthur has brought money for them to get what they need. The people in the yard cheer for the Father of the Marshalsea.
Amy urges her father to rest. She asks Clennam to stay with her. Mr. Dorrit asks if he can leave the Marshalsea now. Arthur replies that it will take a few hours for the forms to be completed, which upsets Mr. Dorrit. Amy asks, after her father is asleep, if all his debts will be paid. Clennam confirms this. She is upset that her father has paid his debts with both his life and money. She falls asleep, and Clennam leaves her.