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MonkeyNotes-The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald-Free Booknotes Summary
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CHAPTER SUMMARIES WITH NOTES

CHAPTER VII

Summary (continued)

When Tom asks a policeman what has happened, the officer replies, "Auto hit her. Ins'antly killed. . .She ran out ina road. Son-of-a-bitch didn't even stopus car." Michaelis adds there were really two cars, one coming in each direction. The one coming from New York is the one that hit her. A Negro man steps forward and says that is was a big, new, yellow car. He did not see the accident, but passed the yellow car speeding away. From above, Wilson yells, "I know what kind of car it was!" Tom walks over to him and tells Wilson that he has to pull himself together. He then explains that the yellow car he was driving earlier in the day does not belong to him.

Tom physically picks up Wilson and carries him back to his office, putting him in a chair. He then orders two men to come and watch him. He then tells Nick and Jordan it is time for them to leave. As Tom drives away from the death scene and the Valley of Ashes, he moans, "The God Damn coward! . . . He didn't even stop his car." He obviously knows that the driver was Gatsby.


When they arrive at the Buchanan's, Tom is relieved to see that Daisy is home. He tells Nick and Jordan to come inside and have the help prepare them some dinner. Nick, feeling a little sick about the events of the day, refuses to go inside, saying to himself, "I'd had enough of all of them for one day." As he walks down the driveway to wait for his taxi, Gatsby steps out from the bushes and asks if Nick has seen the scene of the accident and if the woman was killed. When Nick answers affirmatively, Gatsby explains that he drove to West Egg by a side road and put the car in his garage and came to Daisy's in a taxi. He hopes that no one has spotted the car. Suddenly Nick realizes that Gatsby was not driving the car; it was Daisy who hit Myrtle and kept going. Gatsby admits the truth and adds, "But of course I'll say I was driving."

Gatsby then explains what happened. A woman rushed out at the car, as if she wanted to speak to them. Daisy tried to swerve away from her, but there was a car coming from the other direction. As a result, she jerked the wheel back and hit the woman. Gatsby tried to make Daisy stop, but she stepped on the gas instead. Gatsby finally pulled on the emergency brake; when the car came to a stop, he got into the driver's seat. After hiding the yellow car in his garage, they took a taxi. He is hiding in the bushes to make certain that Tom does not do anything cruel to her. Nick answers, "He won't touch her. He's not thinking about Daisy." But he tells Gatsby he will go up to the house to make certain that nothing is going on.

When Nick peers into the window, he sees Daisy and Tom "sitting opposite each other at the kitchen table with a plate of cold fried chicken between them and two bottles of ale. They weren't happy. . .and yet they weren't unhappy either. There was an unmistakable air of natural intimacy about the picture and anybody would have said that they were conspiring together." Shocked at the sight, Nick crosses the porch where he had dined with the Buchanan's for the first time -- only three months before. He finds Gatsby in the same place, tells him that all is quiet at the house, and suggests that he goes home. Gatsby insists upon keeping his vigil until he is certain that Daisy is safely in bed. Nick walks away, leaving Gatsby standing in the moonlight, "watching over nothing."

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