Study Guide

Tender is the Night Book Three, Chapter Two

By F. Scott Fitzgerald

Book Three, Chapter Two

  • Dick tells Nicole he got beat up trying to help a drunken friend. He trusts that Baby won’t tell her because both of them know that she can’t take the truth.
  • Franz wants Dick gone, but is having trouble finding an excuse.
  • When Dick’s favorite patient dies, Franz sends him off to another Swiss town to consult a rich Chilean whose son is gay and having problems with alcohol. (See Shmoop’s "Character Analysis" for Dick Diver for more on this.)
  • Dick meets with the father, Senor Pardo y Ciudad Real.
  • The father thinks he needs to "cure" his son Francisco of being gay and drinking. He's sure the cure involves hiring someone to take his son to bordellos, and whipping the young man.
  • Dick tells him these things won’t help.
  • When Dick talks to Francisco, the young man tells him he thinks he drinks because he’s gay.
  • Dick tells the father there’s nothing he can do for his son if he’s happy being gay.
  • He convinces Dick to keep talking to him, and Dick tells him being gay will occupy his whole life, and it’s not worth it. He needs to get control of himself sexually, and to stop drinking.
  • Suddenly, as they are talking, Royal Dumphrey shows up. He ends up telling Dick that Nicole’s dad is nearby. He's sick and possibly dying.
  • Dick goes to meet the doctor attending to Devereux Warren, and proposes a specialist for him.
  • Then he tells Senor Pardo y Cuidad Real that he can’t help Francisco. The man begs him to take Francisco with him, but Dick refuses.
  • Devereux Warren’s doctor shows up then and Dick asks if he’s dead. The doctor says no, but that Devereux wants to see Nicole, to make up with her over some fight from the past.
  • Dick says he’s aware of the situation and will have to consult with Franz over the advisability of Nicole seeing her dad.
  • Dick calls the clinic and gets Kaethe, who offers to take the message. But, Dick forgets to tell her not to tell Nicole.
  • Kaethe doesn’t mean to tell Nicole, it just slips out when Nicole inadvertently snubs her again.
  • Franz show up and Nicole tells him she’s going right away and asks him to call Dick.
  • Meanwhile Dick sees Devereux’s doctor again and again asks if Devereux is dead.
  • The doctor says he got up and went home all of a sudden.
  • Franz calls to tell him Nicole is on the way. Dick is irritated that she was told, but knows it’s not Franz’s fault.
  • Dick tries to apprehend Devereux at the train station, but doesn’t, and he misses meeting Nicole. He finds her in the lobby later, and she asks right away about her father.
  • Dick tells her that he left. She can’t believe it.
  • Dick starts explaining how things went down, but she stops him. It’s too hard for her to listen. She blames Dick for the situation, but then she apologizes.

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