Study Guide

Blood Meridian Chapter 8

By Cormac McCarthy

Chapter 8

  • Toadvine, the kid, and Bathcat hit up a bar in the town of Janos. While they drink, an old dude tries to come up and talk to them about killing Apaches (which is apparently their job). But they want nothing to do with the guy.
  • At this point, a dude from the other side of the room starts moaning. Meanwhile, the old man won't let up about asking Toadvine and the guys questions. He tells them about how much blood has been spilled in Mexico over the years and how much will still be spilt in the future. Then he fills a cup with wine and walks away.
  • Apparently, the moaning from the corner of the room is coming from a guy who's just been stabbed. He won't get up because there's nowhere for him to go to get help.
  • Toadvine and the boys leave the bar.
  • When the men ride out the next day, the judge realizes that the veteran from the Mexican-American War is no longer with them. He questions Toadvine about it, but Toadvine has no clue what happened to the guy.
  • The first night back in the desert, it finally happens: one of the John Jacksons needs to go. The white John Jackson orders the black Jackson to use a different fire that's for non-whites. The black John Jackson politely replies by cutting off the white Jackson's head with a knife.
  • The group gets up and rides into the desert plains. It's less than any hour before they're attacked by a group of Apaches.