Part 3, Chapter 2 Summary

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Last Updated on May 5, 2015, by eNotes Editorial. Word Count: 512

The next morning, as Dagny is cooking breakfast and John Galt is out checking on the ray screen, a stunningly beautiful man bursts in the door. He stops when he sees Dagny but expresses his pleasure that she has decided to join them. She explains that she is a “scab,” meaning that she is there but does not belong. He tells her that he has been watching her progress for some years. When John Galt returns, he introduces the man to her as Ragnar Danneskjold. Dagny is shocked to face the infamous pirate in person, but he explains that he has only stolen from those who steal from others. He tells her that the others in the valley (known usually as Galt’s Gulch) do not approve of his means of protest. He tells Dagny that he has a bank account for her from which she can draw at any time. She refuses and offers to be John Galt’s cook and housekeeper for wages. John Galt tells Dagny that this is the morning when he, Ragnar, and Francisco meet for their annual breakfast. This is also the month when any community members who live outside the valley come back for a vacation to learn from the others in the profession they have abandoned.

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Owen Kellogg arrives a few days later; he is surprised that Dagny is alive. He tells her that everyone on the outside world has presumed that she died in a plane crash, but there is still some effort to find the wreckage. He personally called Henry Rearden to tell him the news. The next day Francisco d’Anconia also arrives, overjoyed to find Dagny there. He again professes his love for her and knows she will always love him even if she chooses another man. John Galt tells her that she cannot send a message to Rearden, even if she does not include a return address.

Over the next several days, Dagny falls in love with John Galt, and he with her. Despite this, they cannot be together because she has not agreed to join in the strike and live in the valley permanently. She also believes that John Galt will hide his feelings out of consideration for Francisco d’Anconia. John Galt tells her that no one stays in the valley by compulsion, but each one must make the decision to leave his life behind and join the strike of the mind. Dagny is not sure what she should do and waivers the entire month she is there. Finally she decides that she cannot give up her fight to save the railroad. As long as there are people who desire to live, she will not desert them. John Galt tells her that they are not really living. Nevertheless, he flies her back out of the mountain and leaves her at a spot near a train station so she can return to the outside world. John Galt tells her that he will continue to watch her and wait for her return, which he is sure she will do.

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