Treasure Trove Hearts and Hands Short Stories Workbook Answers

This post is part of Exam18’s ICSE Treasure Trove Workbook Answers Series.

Book Name Story Name Story Writer
Treasure Trove Short Stories Hearts and Hands O Henry

Long-answer type questions

1. Where does the chance-encounter between Easton and Miss Fairchild take place and how do they react to each other ?

Answer: Mr Easton and Miss Fairchild are acquainted to each other and meet after a fairly long time during a train journey. When the train, B & M Express, stops at Denver station, two new passengers enter the compartment in which Miss Fairchild is already present. One of the passengers is handsome, bold and frank from his appearance. The other one is ruffled, glum faced and heavily built. Miss Fairchild asks the handsome Youngman whether he didn’t recognize her. The Youngman felt embarrassed to meet her all of a sudden. He didn’t know how to react in this awkward situation. When she extended her hand to him, he just clasped her fingers with his left hand.

2. Why does the glad look in the girl’s eyes change to a bewildered look ?

Answer: Miss Fairchild had looked quite pleased to meet the youngman after a long interval. She had even extended her little hand to him as a token of affection. However, when the youngman, Mr Easton, indicates that he is handcuffed to his fellow traveller, the glad look in her eyes is suddenly changed into a bewildered look. The glow of her face fades away. Her lips part in a vague distress. She understands that the youngman has been arrested by the marshal sitting by his side and is probably being taken to some prison.

3. How does Easton’s companion save the situation with his presence of mind ?

Answer: Mr Easton’s companion is a clever man with a great presence of mind. He quickly senses the girl’s distress when she sees Mr Easton in handcuffs. He intervenes to introduce himself as a prisoner and Mr Easton as a marshal. He states that he has been sentenced to seven years imprisonment for counterfeiting and Mr Easton is taking him to Leavenworth prison. This statement relieves the girl quite a lot and the usual glow returns to her cheeks. She now thinks that Mr Easton has taken up the job of Marshal and is doing well in life. Now, Mr Easton is also encouraged to keep up the lie. He explains to Miss Fairchild that he had to do something by way of career. His money had dwindled fast and one needs money to compete with the crowd in a city like Washington. He saw this opportunity in the West and accepted the position of a marshal. The young girl, Miss Fairchild, is excited to hear this. She begins to think of him as a dashing western hero who rides and shoots and goes into all kinds of dangers and risks. Thus she has romantic notions about the job of a marshal.

4. What is the ironical situation in which we find Miss Fairchild and the other two passengers in the train ?

Answer: The story “Hearts and Hands” is based on irony, the irony of situation. Appearances are deceptive. Two passengers board the train at Denver. Miss Fairchild is acquainted with one of the passengers named Mr Easton. Soon she notices the fact that both the passengers are handcuffed to each other. She is distressed to think that Mr Easton has been arrested by the Marshal and is being taken to a prison. This is actually the position. But the situation takes a turn when the companion of Mr Easton poses to be a criminal and describes Mr Easton as a marshal. Pointing to the handcuffs, he says to Miss Fairchild.
“Don’t you worry about them, Miss. All marshals handcuff themselves to their prisoners to keep them from getting away. Mr Easton knows his business.”
This relieves the distress of Miss Fairchild.

5. What is the shocking revelation at the end of the story ?

Answer: The story “Hearts and Hands” is a story with a surprise ending. The actual offender is taken as a marshal and vice versa. The girl Miss Fairchild is deluded to think that the youngman whom, she has known in the past is a marshal now and he is taking the other man to a prison. However, the reality dawns upon us at the end of the story. There are two other passengers apart from the main characters. They have been observing and listening to the conversation among these main characters. As soon as the handcuffed passengers move to the smoker car, one of these passengers remarks that Mr Easton seems too young to be a marshal. The other passenger asks : “Did you ever know an officer to handcuff a prisoner to his right hand ?” This is enough to clear the mystery about the identity of Mr Easton and his companion.

6. Comment on the crucial role played by the real marshal in the story “Hearts and Hands”.

Answer: O. Henry, the great American writer, is known for his short stories most of which have a sting in the tail. The readers are swept off their feet as the story reaches towards an unexpected climax. The mystery and suspense is maintained till the end. The characters along with the readers are in for a surprise. The present story “Hearts and Hands” centres around three main characters and two minor characters. In the first set of characters we find Miss Fairchild who is acquainted with one of the two passengers who enter the train at Denver. She is shocked to find the acquaintance Mr Easton handcuffed to his stout companion. However, this companion puts her at ease by pointing out that all marshals handcuff themselves to their prisoners to keep them from getting away. This is obviously true but the real fact is that this companion is the real marshal and Mr Easton is the prisoner. Later, the real marshal shifts to the smoker car on the pretext of smoking a pipe. Thus, he saves the Youngman, Mr Easton, from embarrassment in front of his acquaintance, Miss Easton. It is only later that the other two passengers who were silent observers till now reveal the actual position about the real identity of Mr Easton and his companion.


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Comprehension Passages

1. Read the extract given below and answer the questions that follow :

In one coach there sat a very pretty young woman dressed in elegant taste and surrounded by all the luxurious comforts of an experienced traveller. Among the newcomers were two young men, one of handsome presence with a bold, frank countenance and manner; the other a ruffled, glum-faced person, heavily built and roughly dressed. The two were handcuffed together.
As they passed down the aisle of the coach the only vacant seat offered was a reversed one facing the attractive young woman. Here the linked couple seated themselves. The young woman’s glance fell upon them with a distant, swift disinterest; then with a lovely smile brightening her countenance and a tender pink tingeing her rounded cheeks, she held out a little gray- gloved hand. When she spoke her voice, full, sweet, and deliberate, proclaimed that its owner was accustomed to speak and be heard.

(i) Who were the two new passengers that entered the train ? Where did they seat themselves ?
Answer: The two new passengers were young men who entered the train. One was a handsome person. He seemed bold with frank face and manner. The other was a ruffled, glum-faced person. He was heavily built and roughly dressed. They took the seat facing a young woman named Miss Fairchild.
(ii) Who was the young girl that sat in one of the coaches ?
Answer: The young girl was pretty and dressed elegantly. She seemed to be an experienced traveller. She was Miss Fairchild and was acquainted with one of the two new passengers.
(iii) Why are the two passengers called ‘the linked couple’ ?
Answer: The two passengers are called ‘the linked couple’ because they are handcuffed together. They occupy the same seat in front of Miss Fairchild because they are handcuffed together.
(iv) How did the young woman look at the two passengers initially ? Why did she talk to one of them after a while ?
Answer: Initially, the young woman showed no interest in the two passengers and looked at them with a distant, swift disinterest. After a while, she found that one of them was Mr Easton whom she knew. And so she talked to him.
(v) How did the young woman initiate a chat with Mr Easton ? What was her tone ?
Answer: The young woman initiated a chat with Mr Easton by addressing him by his name, and then by asking him if he did not ever recognize his old friends when they met in the West. She spoke in a sweet and friendly tone.

2. Read the extract given below and answer the questions that follow :

The younger man roused himself sharply at the sound of her voice, seemed to struggle with a slight embarrassment which he threw off instantly, and then clasped her fingers with his left hand.
“It’s Miss Fairchild,” he said, with a smile. ”I’ll ask you to excuse the other hand; it’s otherwise engaged just at present.”
He slightly raised his right hand, bound at the wrist by the shining “bracelet” to the left one of his companion. The glad look in the girl’s eyes slowly changed to a bewildered horror. The glow faded from her cheeks. Her lips parted in a vague, relaxing distress. Easton, with a little laugh, as if amused, was about to speak again when the other forestalled him. The glum¬faced man had been watching the girl’s countenance with veiled glances from his keen, shrewd eyes.

(i) Why did Mr Easton feel embarrassed ? Why did he clasp her fingers with his left hand ?
Answer: Mr Easton felt embarrassed because his old acquaintance, Miss Fairchild, saw him in handcuffs. He clasped her fingers with his left hand because his right hand was bound at the wrist by the shining ‘bracelet’ to the left of his companion.
(ii) Why did he tell Miss Fairchild, “I’ll ask you to excuse the other hand” ? How was it engaged at that time ?
Answer: He told Miss Fairchild that he would ask her to excuse the other hand because it was bound at the wrist by the shining ‘bracelet’ to the left of his companion.
(iii) Why did the glad look in young woman’s eyes change to a bewildered horror ?
Answer: The young woman noticed that Mr Easton, her old friend, was handcuffed to the man seated beside him. As Mr Easton greeted her, he raised his right hand bound at the wrist by the shining ‘bracelet’ to the left one of his companion. When she saw this, the glad look in her eyes changed to bewildered horror.
(iv) How did the glum-faced man save Mr Easton from embarrassment ?
Answer: When Miss Fairchild saw Mr Easton, her old friend, in handcuffs, Mr Easton felt embarrassed. The glum-faced man had been watching Miss Fairchild’s face with his shrewd eyes. In order to save Mr Easton from embarrassment, he came forward with an explanation and said that Easton was a marshal and the two were headed for Leavenworth prison.
(v) What did the glum-faced man tell the young woman ? What effect did his remark have on the young woman ?
Answer: The glum-faced man told the young woman that Mr Easton was a marshal and that they (Easton and the glum-faced man) were headed for Leavenworth prison. His remark relieved the young woman of her embarrassment.

3. Read the extract given below and answer the questions that follow :

“You’ll excuse me for speaking, miss, but, I see you’re acquainted with the marshal here. If you’ll ask him to speak a word for me when we get to the pen he’ll do it, and it’ll make things easier for me there. He’s taking me to Leavenworth prison. It’s seven years for counterfeiting.”

(i) Whom does the glum-faced man call marshal ? Why does he do so ?
Answer: The glum-faced man calls Mr Easton marshal. He does so in order to save Mr Easton from embarrassment.
(ii) How does he remove Mr Easton’s embarrassment ?
Answer: When Miss Fairchild sees Mr Easton, her old friend, in handcuffs, Mr Easton feels embarrassed. In order to remove Mr Easton’s embarrassment, he tells Miss Fairchild that Mr Easton is a marshal and they are headed for Leavenworth prison.
(iii) What does he present himself as ? Why ?
Answer: He presents himself as a convict. He does so in order to save Easton from embarrassment.
(iv) Why does he tell that Mr Easton is taking him to Leavenworth prison ?
Answer: He tells Miss Fairchild that Mr Easton is taking him to Leavenworth prison in order to confirm that Mr Easton is a marshal and he is a convict.
(v) How does the young woman react to the remark of the glum-faced man ?
Answer: The young woman is fully relieved of her tension and accepts that Mr Easton is a marshal and is doing his duty as a marshal.

4. Read the extract given below and answer the questions that follow.

“Oh !” said the girl, with a deep breath and returning color. “So that is what you are doing out here? A marshal!”
“My dear Miss Fairchild,” said Easton, calmly, “I had to do something. Money has a way of taking wings unto itself, and you know it takes money to keep step with our crowd in Washington. I saw this opening in the West, and- -well, a marshalship isn’t quite as high a position as that of ambassador, but – ”

(i) Why does the glow in the young girl’s cheeks return ? Whom does he call marshal ?
Answer: When the glum-faced person tells her that Mr Easton, her old friend, is a marshal . and not a convict, the glow in her cheeks returns. He calls Mr Easton marshal.
(ii) What does Mr Easton tell Miss Fairchild to confirm that he is the marshal ?
Answer: Mr Easton tells Miss Fairchild that his butterfly days were over in Washington. So he had to do something. In order to earn money he took up the job of a marshal. Though marshalship is not quite as high as a position as that of an ambassador, yet it fetches him money. In this way he confirms that he is the marshal.
(iii) Why does the young girl call Mr Easton ‘a dashing Western hero’ ?
Answer: The young girl calls Mr Easton ‘a dashing Western hero’ because he has to do a difficult duty and face all kinds of dangers. He has to ride and shoot in dangerous situations. So she calls him ‘a dashing Western hero.’
(iv) Explain the line – “you ride and shoot and go into all kinds of dangers.”
Answer: Miss Fairchild calls Mr Easton ‘a dashing Western hero’ because as a marshal he has to confront all kinds of dangerous situations. She says that he has to ride and shoot in several challenging situations.
(v) How does Miss Fairchild react to Easton’s acceptance of marshal’s job ?
Answer: She reacts favourably to his acceptance of a marshal’s job. She is very happy. Her eyes, fascinated, went back, widening a little to rest upon the glittering handcuffs.
She wishes him goodbye with a promise to see him in Washington.

5. Read the extract given below and answer the questions that follow :

The girl’s eyes, fascinated, went back, widening a little, to rest upon the glittering handcuffs.
“Don’t you worry about them, miss,” said the other man. “All marshals handcuff themselves to their prisoners to keep them from getting away. Mr Easton knows his business.”
“Will we see you again soon in Washington ?” asked the girl.
“Not soon, I think,” said Easton. “My butterfly days are over, I fear.”

(i) Why did the girl’s eyes rest upon the glittering handcuffs ? What was she thinking ?
Answer: The girl felt happy to know that her friend had become a marshal. Her eyes glowed and now she was fascinated by the glittering handcuffs. So her eyes rested upon the glittering handcuffs. She was entertaining a pleasant thought of being a marshal’s friend.
(ii) What comment does the other man make on the handcuffs ? Why does he praise Easton in handcuffs ?
Answer: The other man calls Mr Easton marshal. So he comments that all marshals handcuff themselves to their prisoners to keep them from getting away. He praises Mr Easton by saying that he knows his job well. In fact, he praises Easton in handcuff because he wants to confirm that Mr Easton is a marshal.
(iii) How does Miss Fairchild feel when she is assured that Mr Easton is a marshal and not a convict ?
Answer: She feels very happy to know that her old friend is a marshal. She is relieved of the tension and feels satisfied that Mr Easton is a marshal and is doing his duty as a marshal.
(iv) The girl asks Mr Easton, “Will we see you again soon in Washington ?” Why ?
Answer: She feels happy that her friend Mr Easton is a marshal and is well-placed. So she wishes to meet him in Washington. Thus she asks him if they will see him again soon in Washington.
(v) Why does the young girl reconcile herself with Mr Easton’s handcuff ?
Answer: The young girl reconciles herself with Mr. Easton’s handcuffs because she is assured that he is a marshal and not a convict. So she reconciles herself with Mr Easton’s handcuffs.

6. Read the extract given below and answer the questions that follow :

“Say, Mr Marshal,” growled the glum-faced man. “This isn’t quite fair. I’m needing a drink, and haven’t had a smoke all day. Haven’t you talked long enough ? Take me in the smoker now, won’t you ? I’m half dead for a pipe.”
The bound travelers rose to their feet, Easton with the same slow smile on his face.

(i) Why does the glum-faced man call Mr Easton marshal ? How does he succeed in his plan ?
Answer: Mr Easton feels embarrassed when Miss Fairchild, his old friend, sees him in handcuffs. So in order to save Mr Easton
from embarrassment, the glum-faced man calls Mr Easton marshal. He succeeds in his plan because Miss Fairchild belives in his assertion and thinks that Mr Easton is really a marshal and not a convict.
(ii) What remark did one of the passengers seated nearby make about Mr Easton ?
Answer: One of the passengers seated nearby listened to the whole conversation and remarked that Mr Easton seemed too young to be a marshal.
(iii) What remark did another passenger make about Mr Easton ?
Answer: Another passenger remarked that Mr Easton was not a marshal but a counterfeiter.
(iv) What excuse did Mr Easton make to say goodbye to the young girl ?
Answer: The glum-faced man asked Mr Easton to accompany him to the smoker’s room to smoke. So Mr Easton told her that he was going to the smoker’s room to smoke. He made this excuse and said goodbye to Miss Fairchild.
(v) Why did Easton assert that he must go on to Leavenworth ?
Answer: Easton asserted in the name of duty that he must go on to Leavenworth. So, he held out his hand for a farewell.