Cal breaks it off with Julie Kikuchi in the present before returning to Desdemona's story in the past.
With Desdemona bed-ridden with grief, Calliope brings her trays of food.
Desdemona somehow gets enrolled in a longevity study. They smudge the facts a bit, leading the doctor to believe that Desdemona's Greek diet has her looking great at ninety-one. (She's really twenty years younger.)
Someone is prospering for real though: Milton is expanding his restaurant business into a franchise of hot dog stands called Hercules Hot Dogs.
Also, Calliope's brother, Chapter Eleven, has started pleasuring himself and really enjoying it.
At school, Calliope feels awkward because she's the only girl who has yet to blossom.
Things are going to change, though. As part of desegregation, they're going to start busing white kids to black schools.