The Great Gatsby
by F. Scott Fitzgerald
The Great Gatsby Chapter 9 Quotes
How we cite the quotes:
Citations follow this format: (Chapter.Paragraph)
He broke off defiantly. "What if I did tell him? That fellow had it coming to him. He threw dust into your eyes just like he did in Daisy's, but he was a tough one. He ran over Myrtle like you'd run over a dog and never even stopped his car."
There was nothing I could say, except the one unutterable fact that it wasn't true. (9.142-43)
Sometimes honesty isn't the best policy. Gatsby's dead, and Nick has to protect Daisy; he has to lie to keep her safe. Busted! Guess Nick isn't so honest after all. Or, is this actually the more honest and moral choice? Tricky.
I couldn't forgive him or like him, but I saw that what he had done was, to him, entirely justified. It was all very careless and confused. They were careless people, Tom and Daisy – they smashed up things and creatures and then retreated back into their money or their vast carelessness, or whatever it was that kept them together, and let other people clean up the mess they had made […]. (9.145)
Nick may understand Tom, but he's not happy about it: he's dissatisfied with the way Tom and Daisy are dealing with this tragedy, and it's enough to send him scurrying back West in search of something else to be dissatisfied about.
Next morning I sent the butler to New York with a letter to Wolfsheim, which asked for information and urged him to come out on the next train. That request seemed superfluous when I wrote it. I was sure he'd start when he saw the newspapers, just as I was sure a there'd be a wire from Daisy before noon—but neither a wire nor Mr. Wolfsheim arrived; no one arrived except more police and photographers and newspaper men. When the butler brought back Wolfsheim's answer I began to have a feeling of defiance, of scornful solidarity between Gatsby and me against them all. (9.20)
After Gatsby's death, Nick realizes just how alone Gatsby is. What's weird is he begins to identify with Gatsby, as though they're suddenly BFFs. We bet Gatsby would have appreciated that; too bad it's too late now.