PREVIOUSLY: Dagny loves the idyllic Galt’s Gulch. The residents constantly talk about how the outside world deserves righteous annihilation, but after a while even that starts to seem eminently reasonable.
The end of the 10th annual Galt’s Gulch Summer Vacation Month is rapidly approaching.
Dagny and Galt take one morning to visit Francisco’s small copper mine in the hills near town, and Dagny gets all caught up in the creative energy that she immediately begins designing a railroad to connect the mine to the town in her mind.
Then she remembers her national railroad system that was meant to connect hundreds, thousands of towns, linking them to energy sources and food supplies. A wave of guilt washes over her and she despairs that she can’t bring herself to say “Fuck you world” like everybody else in the Gulch. But Galt assures her that that’s fair. Until she is able to face all the humanitarian horrors that await the world and shrug in response, then she’s right to feel like she doesn’t belong.
On their way back from the mine, Francisco asks Dagny that in case this last week of vacation is the last week they ever spend together, would she like to come stay with him at his remote love shack? But Dagny’s crushing on Galt now. She’s like “Oh well I’ve got this job. What do you think, Master?” And Galt is clearly giving her this look like, “Seriously, you’re making me do this? Weak.” But he says, “Sorry Frankie, but she stays with me,” because despite their nihilistic foreign policy the residents of this eden do not bullshit each other about their feelings.
Francisco takes that pretty well, all things considered, and Dagny feels utterly relieved that she can now pour hot candle wax all over Galt’s naked body without ruining her oldest friendship. She starts to understand all theiresentment of the outside world, where the resolution of a love triangle like this one would never be so free of drama.
PAUSE. I’d like to point out here that Francisco D’Anconia is basically Ayn Rand’s loyal cuckold husband, Frank O’Connor, and John Galt is her polyamorous lover Nat Branden. All of the ‘shipper plotlines in this book are thus revealed to be Rand’s fan-fiction about her own life and her personal pornographic fantasies. Ridiculous.
PLAY. As Dagny leaves the farmer’s market with the fresh groceries for dinner, she happens to see another small plane circling in the skies above the town’s reflector cloak. She runs up to a high point to try and get a closer look and of course it is Hank Rearden, desperately hunting for signs of Dagny’s presumably dead body. This gives her another pang of regret at ignoring the tribulations of the outside world.
So when the Objectivist brain trust meets with her on the day before the end of summer vacation, and when they ask her if she has decided to stay or to go… she says she won’t be sure until the morning. They (Galt, Francisco, Mulligan, whoever) all consent to this, and then turn to their internal matters of business.
Specifically, everybody is moving to the Gulch permanently, no more dallying in the outside world. Francisco estimates he’ll be able to disappear completely from society in four months’ time. But Galt declares that he’s considering going back to his undercover life on the grid for a while.
Everybody is like, “Dear God, man, why?” and Galt is like “It’s my call,” and they’re like, “Yeah sure, but let’s remember a few salient facts here.”
And then they shoot off a list of all the terrible fucked up things that’re going on back in society proper. Mass starvation, no fuel, collapsing infrastructure, police crackdowns on civil unrest. It’s a fucking war zone. Everybody’s moving to the Gulch because it’s the only safe place left.
In the middle of this cavalcade of atrocities Dagny leaps up and shouts, “Fuck that!” and the assembled Objectivists turn to her like, “You mean, ‘fuck the world’?” And Dagny scoffs. “No, fuck you guys! Somewhere out there, there are people who deserve to live in Galt’s Gulch too, people who you and I have never met. And as long as they’re out there, I’m not going to abandon the world to the senseless destruction you have wrought! Fuck!”
They would quibble with their culpability, of course, but mostly they just tell Dagny they’re sorry for what she’s about to put herself through. She’s like, “It’s okay. You have a beautiful thing going here. But ‘so long as men desire to live, I cannot lose my battle.'”
And Akston, World’s Greatest Philosopher, is like, “Oh silly little Dagny. Do they desire to live though? Do they really?” You know this ‘philosopher’ has a real yen to justify killing people, is anybody else picking up on that?
Anyway they’re all confident that Dagny will eventually realize the error of her ways and return to the fold. But for now she will have to be led out of the valley blindfolded and treated as an enemy.
Before she goes, Francisco and Galt take her back to Francisco’s place for one last drink. Galt announces that he has firmly decided to return to the world as well, and that’s the last clue Francisco needs.
He lets them know that he’s picked up on the sexual tension between them and doesn’t mind. He knew that when they inevitably met he would lose Dagny because obviously Sexy Capitalist Jesus is the alpha male in any room he’s in, so… what’reyagonnado, am I right?
Anyway poor Frankie has this pair of ancient goblets that belonged to his ancestor Sebastian, who first came to the new world, and Sebastian’s wife, whom only joined him there years later. And Frankie kept these goblets here in the valley so that when Dagny arrived, the two of them could drink from them together.
But hey, if she’s into John now, then whatever. Dagny and Galt can drink from them. it’s not like this was a moment Frisco pictured for his whole goddamn adult life or anything. Totally fine. Cheers!
PAUSE. Fucking seriously? Look, you gotta do what you gotta do, but Dagny, you just met this guy a few weeks ago, and he’s a smirky douche who runs a cult and plots global destruction. Meanwhile, here’s Francisco, stoic badass of stoic badasses, who did all of the dirty work, who put himself in danger, who is currently witnessing his lifelong dreams turn to ashes in the most bitterly ironic way possible and taking it like a man, like a total boss… and you’re picking the smarmy asshole whose only claim to fame is refusing to do any work? This is some bullshit. Fucktarded. And I would say it’s all understandable under the maxim of “the heart wants what it wants,” but Ayn Rand herself would never accept that as justification, so… ridiculous.
PLAY. The three of them toast, perhaps bittersweetly, and go their separate ways. The following morning Galt tells Dagny he is returning to the world, undercover, to be there when she changes her mind. She’s into it.
The blindfold goes on, Galt flies them out of the valley, and, once she’s left alone on a remote airstrip, Dagny realizes that, basically, she’s fallen in love with Tyler Durden.