"Answer my question!" Judge Danforth shouted, growing impatient with Elizabeth. "Is your husband a lecher!"
She paused. Faintly, she replied, "Yes, sir."
Danforth looked surprised. "And that is the reason you removed Abigail Williams from your service?"
"Then it is as your husband claims. This girl wished to take your place in his eyes by having you hanged for witchery." The judge looked upon Abigail with contempt. The girl had tried to cause the deaths of scores of Salem townsfolk, and could cost him his reputation in the state of Massachusetts.
Abigail was aghast. Her carefully laid plans had just been unraveled by the man she loved and his wife. Everything she had done was now for nothing. It seemed unlikely that she could talk her way out of this situation.
"Remove Goody Proctor from the room," Danforth commanded. Once she had left, he continued. "Abigail Williams, I can only assume that you have been lying from the start. You have submitted one false accusation, and therefore you cannot be trusted. You must know that you will go to Hell for such portentous untruths. Confess, and you—"
"I will not have these aspersions cast upon my name! I am not a liar, nor am I a whore! I have done nothing wrong. It is the Devil's work that leads you to doubt me now!" Abigail was furious and panicked. She hoped that she could be believed, but she knew it was mostly futile.
"Do not begin accusing me now, girl!" the judge snapped. "You try to save the honor that you have already tossed away the day you started claiming to see spirits."
"What proof have you?" Abigail asked him. "All you have is the word of a witch and her husband."
"Sir," Proctor began, "she told me herself, before Reverend Hale came to this town, that the two sick girls were just sporting."
"She said this to you?"
"Yes, sir. She said there had been no witchcraft performed on them."
Danforth turned to Abigail. "It has been established that you have lied for the entirety of these trials. You have undermined this court and made fools of all of us. All that is left is to determine your punishment."
Abigail resigned herself to defeat. She had tried her best to be deemed truthful, but it had failed. She remained silent.
"Mr. Proctor, you may join your wife outside," Danforth says. "As for you, girl, you shall sit in jail awaiting your sentence. Take her away, Cheever."
Abigail was put in chains and taken outside to the cart. As she passed John Proctor, a sense of relief fell over him. He had thought he would lose his wife over this young woman, in more ways than one. She had made his life a strained one, and now she was most likely going to be out of his path for quite a while. He hoped that she would be imprisoned long enough to let him repair the damages she had caused.
Soon, the judge came outside as well. "I believe my business here is done for the day," he said. "I suggest you two return home. I promise that your friends will be released soon."
"We thank you, sir, for listening to the truth," Proctor replied. "I can only imagine what damage could have been done if she had been allowed to continue."
"Indeed," Danforth answered. "Good day to you."
John turned to Elizabeth with a tired smile. "Let's go home."