The story begins with Reverend Samuel Parris standing over his daughter's bedside. His daughter, Betty Parris, is laying before him transfixed by some unknown ailment. Reverend Paris soon sends for Reverend John Hale, a specialist in demonology, to see if Betty's sole may have been transfixed by the Devil. Once Reverend Hale arrives, at Reverend Parris" home, Parris explains that he surprised Betty, her cousin Abigail Williams, and some other girls while they were in the forest dancing around naked. He further explains that when he walked up on the girls, Betty was scared and has been in her current state sense the event. Soon they begin to discuss the rumors that the town is spreading about the girls being found in the forest. Abigail admits that one of the girls was dancing naked, she also admits the girls dancing in the forest, but she says that the event had nothing to do with witchcraft, and they were only trying to conjure up spirits of Thomas and Ann Putnam's seven dead children in order to find out who is responsible for their deaths - they all died in infancy, and their sister Ruth Putnam was one of the girls in the forest with the Abigail and Betty. .
Thomas and Ann Putnam show up soon after words and tells Reverends Hale and Parris that their daughter, Ruth, is also sick. Mrs. Putnam admits that she sent Ruth to learn, from Tituba, (the Parris" slave from Barbados) how to talk to the death. When a crowd form outside of Reverend Parris" home everyone exempt Abigail, Mercy Lewis and Mary Warren, the servants of the Putnam's and the Proctors, Abigail threatens the two women not to tell anyone the whole story - the only thing that can say is that they were dancing and that Tituba was teaching Ruth to conjure up her sisters. John Proctor arrives and he sends Mary home, Abigail and him talk alone about their arrive and Abigail propositions Proctors and he sternly refuses her.