What happens when Ponyboy comes home after his curfew?

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kcogliano | Middle School Teacher | (Level 2) Adjunct Educator

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The scene in which Ponyboy arrives home late from his curfew is the point which starts the action and major conflicts in the novel. Ponyboy and Johnny fall asleep in a vacant lot after being out with Soc girls and having a brief run in with their boyfriends. Once Ponyboy wakes up, he heads home where Darry is waiting for him, and is angry. They get into a heated argument, and Darry ends up smacking Ponyboy. This causes Ponyboy to flee, and head back to Johnny in the vacant lot. 

Once he reunites with Johnny, the action takes off. A group of Soc boys show up drunk and in their corvairs. They surround the two boys and start a fight. Ponyboy is targeted first by Bob who holds his head under the water in the fountain. The next thing we know, Ponyboy is on the floor looking at a dead Bob, and Johnny holding a bloody knife. Johnny defended himself and Ponyboy, killing Bob.

Since this story is told from Ponyboy's point of view, as the reader we only see what Ponyboy sees, so we do not know exactly how the fight between Johnny and Bob went. The boys make a plan to go seek the assistance of Dally who is much wiser in these areas. They track Dally down, and Dally is able to get them out of town to hideout in an abandoned church in the country until things calm down. They leave that night without anyone else knowing. 

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mlsldy3 | Elementary School Teacher | (Level 2) Educator

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Ponyboy and his friends are watching a movie in town. When the movie is over he heads back to Two-Bit's house to get his car and drive the girls home. Two-Bit heads off to try to find a poker game or to just get drunk, so Johnny and Ponyboy decide to lay in an empty parking lot, to watch the stars.

Ponyboy's curfew is midnight. He and Johnny sit in the lot and talk for awhile, then they fall asleep. Johnny wakes up and realizes it is two a.m. He wakes Ponyboy up and tells him he better get home. When Ponyboy gets home, Darry is up waiting for him. When Darry sees him, he starts yelling at Ponyboy. He questions him about where he has been and what he has been doing. Soda tries to stick up for Ponyboy, but Darry yells at him. Darry is so angry he ends up hitting Ponyboy and knocking him against the door. This is the first time anyone in his family has hit him, so Ponyboy runs out of the house. Darry is very upset with himself. Ponyboy finds Johnny and tells him he wants to run away. Johnny talks to him about how lucky he is to have a family that truly cares about him. After his conversation with Johnny, Ponyboy decides to return home after cooling off.

The Outsiders is one of those books, that touches the reader deep down. It is such an amazing story of the strength of young people, who don't have the greatest of lives. The character of Ponyboy represents all those people, who may not have everything, but are a really good person. He has a family that only wants what is best for him. 

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