On the 6th of November 1879, finding Joe has failed to meet him at Thompson’s farm, Jack mounts his horse and begins his ride back through the Warby Ranges. As he comes to the foot of a hilly track, the rustle of scrub sounds from behind him. Turning in the saddle, he spots Joe, standing in the middle of the road, signalling he follow him into the scrub. Dismounting, Jack does as requested and follows Joe further into the scrub until the pair are out of sight of the track. At first, Jack is taken aback by Joe’s worn and sickly appearance, paying particular notice to the clothes he is wearing, with his trousers, long boots and spurs covered in Music’s blood.
Disguising the anger Joe feels at Jack going to Superintendent Nicolson two days previously, he shakes the young man’s hand and the pair begin a friendly conversation.
This conversation was described by Jack during his evidence at the Royal Commission:
“He asked me if I knew Mr. Hare, and I said “No”; and he said, “That is the old buck that caught Power.” I said, “I do not know.” He said he believed he was “a smart old cove”; and he asked me if I knew Mr. Nicolson, and I told him I knew no one; and I was to go to Yackandandah and see how many police were stationed there, and to let him know, and see if I could detect any police in private clothes, and loaf around there and see where the police went in to have tea, and all particulars about their movements…He had no horse, but he had a pair of long boots, and his trousers were all over blood. He had long spurs. I asked where his mates were, and he said, “Not very far off.”