Silas Marner: Novel Summary: Chapter 8

Eliot’s eighth chapter details Godfrey’s state of mind upon his return from the Osgood party. She admits that he is so busy thinking about the beauty of Nancy Lammeter that he doesn’t give much thought to the fact that Dunstan hasn’t returned. He figures his brother has spent the night somewhere else.
The nest day Bryce, the man with whom Dunstan made the deal with Wildfire, visits Godfrey and tells him about the deal for the horse, the horse’s death, and the disappearance of Dunstan. This outrages Godfrey, who swears revenge. This leaves Godfrey in a difficult situation, since now he has no money to pay off his debts. Though the eldest brother considers lying to the Squire about what happened, eventually he determines that this act would simply get them both into more trouble with their father, so he decides just to speak the truth to the Squire tomorrow.
As far as the robbery investigation in concerned, the only “evidence” found by the deputy constables is a tinder box near Silas’s home, known to be owned by a foreign peddler. Soon many of the townspeople consider this peddler the robber, though they have no real proof.