Study Guide

The Lathe of Heaven Chapter 10

By Ursula K. LeGuin

Chapter 10

  • George is not down with this new reality: Dr. Haber has gone too far this time, and the new world just isn't right.
  • So George heads downtown into an antiques shop run by one of the aliens. It's full of 1950s memorabilia and knickknacks.
  • When George asks the alien the meaning of iahklu, he gets a record instead. Obviously, the Beatles are the answer to all of this dude's problems.
  • George takes the record, goes off to his friend's place, and listens to the record on repeat until he falls asleep.
  • That's when George dreams the best dream he's had so far: he dreams Heather back into existence. Of course, in her mind, she just fell asleep, but we totally missed her.
  • Oh yeah, by the way: George also dreamed that Heather was his wife. So now she is.
  • The next page basically consists of George and Heather being the cutest sci-fi couple ever.
  • Okay, so after the cuteness, George and Heather head over to Dr. Haber's huge office.
  • In the time since we've seen him, Haber has become gigantic with power. Heather, on the other hand, is more cowardly than before, and she's afraid of him.
  • This is supposed to be George's last appointment, so Dr. Haber tells George to dream that he will be completely normal. That will end all of the effective dreams, right?
  • To test it, Dr. Haber makes George dream of changing the picture of Mt. Hood. But something goes wrong: George wakes up before Haber wanted him to. That's never happened before.
  • Haber brushes it off. George tries to warn the doctor about the dangers of effective dreaming, but of course it doesn't work.
  • George and Heather head out. They are on their way to dinner when stuff starts going a little weird. They feel uneasy… and then all hell breaks loose. Again.
  • And by "all hell breaks loose," we mean that things like buildings start melting like Jell-O. Yeah, it's bad.
  • Haber has started dreaming.
  • Oh, it's so bad.
  • Here's where things start to go really sci-fi. Imagine a giant black whirlpool… but it's not really a whirlpool—it's actually the absence of matter. Well, George jumps in it and uses it as a way to teleport over to Haber's office. (How did he know he could do that?) At the same time, the whirlpool destroys everything around it and even swallows up Heather.
  • Haber's office looks like a Salvador Dalì painting, and George has to think about all of his friends in order to even move forward. Finally, he finds Dr. Haber and rips the Augmentor off of him.
  • The nightmare's over, but it doesn't seem like Dr. Haber is waking up.
  • Later, George walks through the city, looking at the wreckage. His wife is gone, and a whole world of people has disappeared.
  • This day was not a good day.