chapter 43 summary The doctor shows up the next day with Tom lying on a mattress and Jim walking behind in chains. Tom is comatose due to a fever from the bullet wound, but he is still alive. Aunt Sally takes him inside and starts to take care of him immediately. Tom improves rapidly and is already better by the next day.
Huck goes into the bedroom to sit with Tom and see if he is okay. Aunt Sally walks in as well and while both of them are sitting there Tom wakes up. He immediately starts to tell Aunt Sally about everything the two of them did and how they managed to help Jim escape. Aunt Sally cannot believe the two of them were the ones creating all of the trouble around her house. When Tom hears that Jim has been recaptured he shouts at them that they cannot chain Jim up anymore. He tells them that Jim has been free ever since Miss Watson died and freed him in her will.
Apparently Miss Watson was so ashamed about planning to sell Jim that she felt it best to set him free. At that moment Aunt Polly walks into the room. Aunt Sally is so surprised she rushes over and gives her sister a hug. Aunt Polly then proceeds to tell her exactly which of the boys is really Tom and which one is Huck.
Both boys emerge looking quite sheepish. Aunt Polly only gets mad when she finds out that Tom has been stealing her letters and hiding them. She also tells Aunt Sally that what Tom said about Jim was true, he is in fact a free man.