Study Guide

Neuromancer Chapter 8

By William Gibson

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Chapter 8

  • With Riviera in tow, the group heads to Paris to grab a shuttle spaceward. Riviera plays a holographic trick on Case, but Molly threatens him. Apparently, she can hurt him bad "without damaging" him (8.7). We don't know exactly what that means, but it sure sounds threatening.
  • On the shuttle, Molly asks if Case has ever been to space. When he answers no, she hopes he doesn't suffer from SAS (Space Adaption Syndrome). Guess what? He does. It sounds awful.
  • The group stops by Zion, a space colony founded by Rastafarians, on their way to Freeside. On the pit stop, Case meets a Zion native named Aerol.
  • Case has a difficult time navigating the low gravity of Zion. Armitage tells him to practice jacking into cyberspace with SAS, so he'll acclimate for the job ahead.
  • Case and Dixie shoot the breeze while practicing. Dixie asks Case for a favor: when the job's over, he wants to be deleted.
  • Case has a hard time grooving with the Zionites. He tries bond with Aerol by allowing him to jack into cyberspace. Aerol just shakes his head and says, "Babylon" (8.67). If you're curious what "Babylon" means in this context, we have more discussion about it at Maelcum and Aerol's page in the "Characters" section.
  • Riviera makes a holographic show of shooting up a high ball of cocaine and meperidine. He teases Case, but Case says he had to give up getting high, what with his weird new pancreas and all.
  • Using a holographic display, Armitage lays out the plans for getting into the Villa Straylight. The whole things reads like a sweet combination of Star Wars meets Ocean's Eleven.
  • Molly and Case are asked to come see the Elders of Zion late into the sleeping period.
  • The Elders liken Molly to a story called Steppin' Razor because of her razor fingernails. They reveal that Wintermute has contacted them. They're uncertain if Wintermute is a false prophet—they're very religious—but they agree to help by sending Maelcum and Aerol along with Case and Molly on their mission.

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