For two days and nights, John lay trapped in the vault with only the bones of the dead for company.
His cries for help were finally heard by Moonfleet publican, Elzevir Block, who brought him back to his tavern, the Why Not.
This brave and kindly man was to look after John as his own boy, in place of his son David, a lad of the same age, who had been brutally slain by much hated magistrate Maskew.
By cruel chance, Maskew was also the father of the beautiful Grace, the love of John's life - a love that would survive every twist and turn of fate.
But with an uncertain future ahead, John is told by Elzevir it is time to decide: find steady work and make a life elsewhere, or stay with him, in the dangerous world of the smugglers.