Chapter 5 of “Second-Class Citizen” is titled “An Expensive Lesson.” The chapter starts with Adah having a difficult morning. She is pregnant and feels tired. As if this is not enough, her baby Vicky is in an awful mood; he does not want Adah to leave him behind in the house. Later on in the day, Adah receives information from Trudi, her children’s caregiver, that Vicky is very ill. Although Vicky is weak, he is able to say bye-bye to his mother, before the ambulance takes him to the Royal Free Hospital. Upon evaluation, it is determined that Vicky has meningitis. Adah is livid with Trudy. She believes that Vicky must have contracted the virus from something he ate at Trudy’s. Meanwhile, Trudy insists that Vicky must have caught the virus from water he drank in Nigeria before his relocation to England. Confused and annoyed, Adah attacks Trudy with a carpet sweeper, but Trudy dodges her strikes and a neighbor holds Adah back from causing any physical harm to the caregiver. She screams her frustrations at Trudy, and she is undeterred by the crowd of surprised women who have collected at the scene of the altercation. However, her row with Trudy helps to earn her children a spot at Mrs. Stirling’s nursery, and the vile caregiver’s name is removed from the list of registered child minders.
Chapter 6 is titled “Sorry, No Coloureds.” It starts with a letter from a solicitor, requiring Adah and Francis to move out of their rented one-room apartment. The couple’s successes in adjusting to life in England do not sit well with their neighbors, who want them out of their community. However, it is difficult to imagine life outside this community of Black people, because elsewhere racism persists: most of the advertisements for vacant houses have the “Sorry, no coloureds” notice. After a period of absolute torture, in which the couple is forced to endure insults from their neighbors because of their inability to find a new apartment, fate seemingly smiles on Adah: she sees an advertisement of a vacant room at the noticeboard near the post office. However, when the couple visits the house, the owner, an elderly white woman, changes her mind and tells them that the house has already been taken.
Chapter 7 is titled “The Ghetto.” In this chapter, Adah and Francis learn that Mr. Noble, a Nigerian, has vacant rooms to rent. Although Mr. Noble’s quarters are derelict, the couple is desperate for living quarters of any kind and cannot afford to be choosy. The chapter closes with the couple determinedly visiting the Nobles to discuss the possibility of them renting the vacant quarters.