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CHAPTER SUMMARIES WITH NOTES
SummaryOne Saturday night Nick notices that the lights do not go on at Gatsby's. Worried about his neighbor, he goes over to check on his well-being and is greeted by a rude servant he does not know. Nick inquires if Gatsby is sick; the servant says no and slams the door in his face. Later Nick learns that Gatsby has dismissed his whole staff and replaced them with some of Meyer Wolsheim's people. Since Daisy frequently comes to Gatsby's house, he wants to prevent any gossip. Additionally, since Daisy now visits him , he no longer has need to give his lavish parties. "His career as Trimalchio was over."
Gatsby calls Nick the next day and invites him to lunch at Daisy's house the following day. Daisy calls to confirm that he is coming. Nick has a feeling that "something was up." The day of the luncheon is miserably hot, almost the last day of summer. When Gatsby and Nick arrive at the Buchanan's, Daisy and Jordan, in their typical white dresses, lay upon an enormous couch, like silver idols. Tom is on the phone arguing with Wilson about selling him an automobile. Daisy gets up, gives Gatsby a kiss on the mouth, and tells him she loves him. She also orders Jordan to kiss Nick.
Daisy's daughter, Pammy, is then brought into the room by her nurse. Her mother calls her "blessed precious" and "absolute little dream" and shows her off to the guests, like a toy or plaything. It is obvious that Daisy is incapable of sustained or true maternal emotion. Gatsby, however, cannot take his eyes off the child, as if he cannot believe that she really exists. As the little girl is led out again, Tom comes in carrying cold gin rickeys for everyone. He then leads Gatsby and Nick out to the veranda in order to show them the place. Gatsby proudly points out his own home directly across the bay.The group has lunch in the dining room, darkened against the heat. Daisy moans about her boredom and asks, "What'll we do with ourselves this afternoon and the day after that and the next thirty years?" She then complains about the heat and says it makes her feel confused. She demands to go into town and looks to Gatsby for approval. Gatsby stares back at her with adoration. Tom sees the look and is astounded to realize that something is obviously going on between Daisy and Gatsby. Upset by his realization, Tom tries to organize everyone for the trip into town. Daisy and Jordan go upstairs to get ready. When Daisy calls down to tell Tom to bring something up for her to drink, Gatsby remarks that her voice is full of money. Nick agrees and thinks "that was the inexhaustible charm that rose and fell in it, the jingle of it. He then thinks of Daisy as the golden girl in her white palace. Appropriately, when Daisy and Jordan emerge, they are wearing golden hats above their white dresses.
Tom insists that he drive Gatsby's car into town, while Gatsby take his coupe. Gatsby does not like the idea, but agrees to it. Tom pushes Daisy towards Gatsby's car, calling it a circus wagon. Daisy resists going with Tom and announces she will ride with Gatsby. Tom is ready to explode with anger. Once inside the car, he blurts out to Nick and Jordan that he knows what is going on with Gatsby and claims that he has been making an investigation into his past. Jordan tells Tom not to be such a snob.
Nick, Jordan, and Tom grow irritable in the heat of the car. Just as they pass the faded eyes of T.J. Eckelberg, the cautious Nick reminds Tom that he needs gas. Tom impatiently pulls into Wilson's service station. When the owner emerges, looking pale and green, he explains he is not well and apologizes for having called Tom. He says that he needs money so he and Myrtle can move to the West, suggesting that he has finally realized that Myrtle is having an affair. Tom is suddenly in a real panic. Within a matter of hours, he has learned that both his wife and his mistress are slipping away from him. Myrtle is also in a panic. She has been watching the scene below from an upstairs window. She spies Jordan and assumes that she is Tom's wife. Her eyes flash with jealous terror.