Summary Chapter 17
Miles is able to track the people he is pursuing partly, but then the trail goes cold. He assumes the boy will try to escape his father and will try to find Miles at Hendon Hall, knowing that is his destination.
The boy who had lead Edward to his father had further tricked him by saying that Miles was injured.
John Canty reveals that he murdered Father Andrew. He has now changed his name to John Hobbs. The mother and sisters have not went to the place he told them to wait.
Edward grieves over his father’s death. He falls asleep. When he wakes up, he finds a group of disreputable people in the barn. They are John Hobb’s friends—some new, some old. John catches up on the fates of acquaintances he has known. One was killed in a brawl, and one was burnt at the stake for witchcraft—cursing everyone as she did so. Others had been whipped or had their ears cut off. Some were sold as slaves. Some were hanged.
A man named Yokel was once a farmer. His wife and kids are now dead. His mother was burned at the stake. She used to nurse the sick, but when one of her patients died mysteriously, she got into trouble. He was whipped, mutilated, and sold into slavery. He ran away. If he is found, they will hang him.
Edward approaches, making them all laugh when he announces himself as the king. He tells John Hobbs he’ll see him swing for the murder he confessed to. The Ruffler, the leader of the gang, prevents Hobbs from attacking Edward. He tells Edward they may be bad, but they support the king. They make him a scepter, crown, and robe. They call him Foo-foo the first, king of the Mooncalves. Edward is not amused.