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Montag's wife overdoses on sleeping pills
Montag enters his house with Clarisse's question hanging in the air about him; he simply cannot get it off his mind or stop thinking about the answer. He realizes with a sense of growing defeat that he indeed is not happy. To add to his misery, he hears the warplanes overhead and thinks about the political situation; war seems inevitable and imminent.
Before entering the bedroom, Montag imagines Mildred, his wife, lying on the bed like a cold statue with thimble-sized radios clamped on her ears. Every night, she listens to music and falls into a deep sleep. Once inside the room, he sees that Mildred is already asleep with the aid of her sleeping pills and her music. Montag thinks about how distant he and she are from one another. As he turns toward his own bed, he nearly trips on an object in the floor. Using his igniter, he sees that it is an empty crystal bottle that had earlier held sleeping tablets. It is obvious that Millie has overdosed. Montag feels for the telephone and calls the emergency hospital. At once, orderlies come to his house with stomach pumps; they clean out her stomach and transfuse fresh blood into her bloodstream.
Montag sits beside his wife, watching the new blood take effect. He suddenly hears laughter from Clarisse's house and goes outside to eavesdrop. He hears a voice, probably that of her uncle; he is talking about the past when men used one another without any qualms. Montag returns home and tries to sleep; but his mind is buzzing with thoughts of Mildred, Clarisse, her uncle, the sleeping tablets, and fire. He finally takes a sleeping tablet himself and slides into a deep slumber.
This section has Montag coming face to face with his own empty world. First Clarisse upsets him with her fresh opinions, unconventional thoughts, and probing question, all of which make him face his own dull conventionality and dissatisfaction. Entering his dark home, he sees his distant wife, who is in a deep sleep, thanks to her sleeping pills. When he realizes that she has overdosed, he feels himself being torn apart. Adding to his misery is the awful sound of two jet bombers flying overhead, reminding him that war is imminent.
Montag calls the emergency hospital for help. Emergency technicians quickly invade his house to save Mildred; they show no courtesy or concern, but immediately go to work. It is a frightening scene; the machines that pump Mildred's stomach are enormous. One with a huge tube looks like a "black cobra;" as it crawls inside Mildred, its "eye" seems capable of gazing into her soul. After reviving their patient, the two orderlies deliver the terrifying news that overdoses are very common in this futuristic society; they are always on call to handle such situations. The sense of foreboding in the scene is overwhelming.