what indications are there at the end of the chapter that tom and daisy are going to stay together despite his philandering and her love for Gatsby?

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gmuss25 eNotes educator| Certified Educator

Towards the end of the chapter, Tom confronts Jay Gatsby about being an illegal bootlegger in business with Meyer Wolfsheim. Gatsby immediately attempts to defend himself by denying the accusations, but Tom continues to elaborate on his illegal business practices. While Daisy does not say anything that indicates she will leave Gatsby and stay with Tom, her mannerisms and attitude reveal her true intentions. Nick mentions,

It passed, and he began to talk excitedly to Daisy, denying everything, defending his name against accusations that had not been made. But with every word she was drawing further and further into herself, so he gave that up, and only the dead dream fought on as the afternoon slipped away, trying to touch what was no longer tangible, struggling unhappily, undespairingly, toward that lost voice across the room. (Fitzgerald, 77)

Daisy no longer feels safe with Gatsby and feels more secure with Tom. Despite her feelings for Gatsby, she quickly rejects the idea of leaving Tom for Jay because she does not feel secure.

Later that day, Daisy ends up accidentally hitting Myrtle Wilson while driving Gatsby's car. Gatsby takes the blame and tells Daisy that he will wait outside for her when Tom arrives. As Nick is leaving Tom's home, he discovers Gatsby hiding in the bushes waiting for Daisy to leave Tom. However, Nick looks in the window and sees Tom and Daisy sitting across from each other having a casual conversation. Nick says,

They weren’t happy, and neither of them had touched the chicken or the ale — 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. (Fitzgerald, 83)

Daisy's comfortable behavior around Tom and lack of concern for Jay indicate that she has no intentions of leaving her husband for Gatsby.

jbteacherman eNotes educator| Certified Educator

Tom and Daisy would never leave each other because that is not something people of their social standing do; divorce is not an East Egg custom.  Tom has just found out about the death of his mistress and is undoubtedly distressed.  Daisy is confused and used to being bullied by Tom.  Even though she told him off at the hotel earlier in the chapter, it is obvious that she will stay with him.  Gatsby has been a happy diversion, but his past and his garishness won't fit into her idea of high society.  Nick can even see this, and he tries to pull Gatsby away from the Buchanan's yard.  But Gatsby, much as he was earlier drawn to the green light at the end of the dock, cannot leave the idol of his love.  Now there is no light, though, as Daisy does not give Gatsby the signal he was hoping for.  Gatsby ignores this, and the quiet conversation the couple is having, seemingly already mending their broken relationship, if only for one night.  The pathetic nature of Gatsby's waiting helps set the tone for the end of the chapter, leaving little doubt with the reader that Daisy will never leave Tom.  The desperation in Gatsby's voice and actions gives the reader another moment to root for him but only because he is the underdog who is destined to fail.

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The Great Gatsby

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