Chapter 10 Summary
Dallas leaves with his car, so Ponyboy is left to walk home from the hospital alone. He is grieving, sick, and dazed from the kick to his head in the fight. For several hours he stumbles confusedly through the streets, trying to convince himself that Johnny is not really dead. Eventually a man stops him, tells him he is hurt, and gives him a ride home.
When Ponyboy gets in, the whole gang is waiting for him and wondering where he has gone. At first Darry seems angry, but then he looks at Ponyboy’s face and realizes something is wrong. Ponyboy explains that Johnny is dead and Dallas is missing. Before this news has a chance to sink in, a phone rings, and Dallas is on the line. He says he held up a liquor store and the cops are after him. He needs the gang’s help.
The guys run out to meet Dallas in the vacant lot. They see him coming, with the cops right behind him. Under the streetlights, Dallas turns around and pulls his gun. The police shoot and kill him. Ponyboy realizes right away that Dallas wanted to die. Johnny was the only person Dallas loved, and Dallas could not stand to live with Johnny gone. Ponyboy reflects that Dallas’s death will not be recognized as heroic, as Johnny’s was, but that Dallas always acted gallantly toward his friends.
Ponyboy passes out, sick with a fever. He spends several days in bed, sleeping intermittently. When he finally wakes up, Darry is beside him. Ponyboy can hardly remember what has happened. It takes him some time to remember that Johnny and Dallas are dead. Darry says Johnny left Ponyboy his copy of Gone with the Wind, but Ponyboy knows he will never look at that book again. It would be too painful.
Now that Ponyboy is awake, he realizes that Soda and Darry look completely worn out. Ponyboy feels guilty and hopes he did not say anything to upset them while he was unconscious. Soda reassures him on this point and explains why he and Darry look so tired. During the days of Ponyboy’s illness, the two of them have been sitting by Ponyboy’s bed almost constantly. The doctors kept telling Darry and Soda that they would get sick too. Darry goes to make soup, and Soda crawls into Ponyboy’s bed. They are both asleep by the time Darry returns with the food.