Chapter 12 Notes from To Kill a Mockingbird

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To Kill a Mockingbird Chapter 12

Since Jem had turned twelve, he had grown hard to handle -- moody and hungry all the time. Scout kept out of his way after he told her that it was time she started behaving like a girl. Atticus and Cal explained that he was just getting older and so Scout spent the beginning of her summer waiting for Dill. She was disappointed when she received a letter explaining that his mother had remarried, and he was not coming to Maycomb County that summer. Scout was at a loss for what to do with summer if Dill wasn't there and Jem was acting strangely. To top it all off, Atticus had to go to an emergency session of the state legislature. Life wasn't going well.

While Atticus was gone, Cal stayed with Scout and Jem, and on Saturday Cal realized that Atticus hadn't made sure that Scout and Jem's teacher would be at their church on Sunday to make sure they behaved. He normally did that, but he must have forgotten this time, so Cal decided that they would go to church with her.

When they went to church with Cal, there was an initially ugly encounter with a woman who insisted that those white children didn't belong at their church, but the rest of the congregation treated them like royalty. Reverend Sykes introduced Scout and Jem to the congregation as the children of the lawyer who was helping Tom Robinson. On the way home from church, Scout was full of questions about the differences in the church service and the way Cal talked around the Finches and then around her friends and neighbors at church. Scout also asked why Tom Robinson is in jail, and Cal explained that Bob Ewell accused Tom of raping his daughter, Mayella Ewell, so Tom was thrown in jail. When Scout asked what rape is, Cal instructed her to ask Atticus. Then Scout asked if she could visit Cal at home sometime, and Cal said that she'd welcome her. When they reached the Finch house, Alexandra was sitting on the front porch with her bags.

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