Study Guide

Stranger in a Strange Land Chapter 7

By Robert A. Heinlein

Chapter 7

  • At work the next day, Jill finds that Ben didn't go through with his plan. Mike has been replaced with a new patient, and Ben's office claims he has suddenly left town. Willing to bet something went wrong with the grand plan?
  • Yep, indeed it did. 
  • Here's how it went down. Ben goes to the hospital that morning with Fair Witness James Oliver Cavendish and a lawyer. (A Fair Witness is a made-up job in this novel. It's basically someone who will witness an event and report back exactly what they see with no exaggeration or guesswork. Kind of like the opposite of a little brother.)
  • Ben demands to talk with the Secretary-General but, instead, gets his executive assistant Berquist. Ben manages to force his way into an interview with the Man from Mars, but he gets fake Mike instead. He tries to convince the actor to come with him, but alas, he gets kicked out of the hospital.
  • The Fair Witness, now off-duty, suggests that Ben should have checked the actor for calluses as a giveaway to his life on Mars. The suggestion was meant to help Ben, but all it really does is set him off.
  • Frustrated, he calls everyone he can think of to crack the case. This includes Dr. Nelson, the Secretary-General himself. 
  • Not a smart movie. The police are able to trace the cab's phone and remotely control the car to land in their, um, secure facility.