Cellulairement

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Paul Verlaine

Montag learns that Mildred and her friends were the ones who had betrayed him. Faber persuades Montag to run, but Montag knows that he will be arrested once he has finished dousing his books. While Beatty is still beating Montag, Faber's green bullet falls out of his ear and is discovered by Beatty, who mentions that he will later track Faber. This energizes Montag, and he douses an unresisting Beatty with the flamethrower, burning him to death. He then knocks down the other two observing and docile firemen before torching the Hound, though not before the Hound injures his leg.

Montag flees with the terrible pain in his leg impeding his every move. In the meantime, the Seashell in his pocket warned the City to watch for a fugitive (namely Montag). Police helicopters were searching for him, as well.

While straining to walk calmly in order not to attract attention, a rushing car tries to knock him down. Raucous laughter tells him that it is children on their usual fun of driving their beetle (the super-fast car) and trying to kill someone. (A similar incident could very well have been the cause of Clarissa's death, too).

Passing the house of Mr. Black, another fireman, Montag plants some of the books that he managed to grab with him in Black's kitchen before calling in an alarm for the Salamanders to burn the fireman's house.

Seeking temporary refuge in Faber's house, Faber's television set informs them that an imported Mechanical Hound is on the tracks of the fleeing man, that this Hound never fails in its mission, and that the Hound is so powerful that "the Mechanical hound can remember and identify ten thousand odor indexes on ten thousand men without resetting." (133). The Mechanical Hound had already landed at the site of Montag's burnt former home.

Montag advises Faber to remove traces of odor of anything that he touched or anywhere that he walked so that he, Faber, would not be discovered. He also asks for a suitcase with Faber's dirtiest, oldest clothes and some whiskey, with which he douses the valise.

He runs toward the river.

As Montag runs, he sees through the windows of passing houses the image (played on the parlor walls) of the Hound tracking his old scent. The Hound briefly stops outside Faber's house, then changes direction. Montag's Seashell tells him that the entire population is told to open their doors and to look for the fugitive.

Montag runs on from the last row of houses down to the river. He splashes his face with liquor, dons Faber's old clothes, and tosses clothes his into the river before he lets the river float him along. The Hound reaches the river when Montag is 300 yards downstream. It misses his trail and reverses direction.

Emerging from the river into the dark of night, Montag follows the railroad tracks and sees a fire with a group of motionless faces around it. The men welcome Montag. They inform him that all of them were fugitives, each involved with books in some way (most of them retired academics), and that each of them carries a different book in his or her head. This is the way each has become known (according to the volume) and that, after the war, each (and there are thousands of similar refugees) will teach his memorized portion to people so that the New Age of Education will start. If the people remain disinterested, the books will be orally transmitted to their own children until a particular generation will be ready to receive the information. Montag, himself, was the Book of Ecclesiastics.

Montag is now free: The Hound has swallowed another individual in a deliberate ruse to prevent the spectators from knowing that it has failed its mission.

Shortly afterward, Civilization is hit by an atomic attack. The city crumbles, and Montag is aware that both Mildred and Faber are killed.

Granger, one of the refugees, reminisces to Montag about the importance of contribution to the world, and Montag realizes that neither he nor Mildred has given anything to the world; all he had contributed was ashes, and Mildred… He could not remember her doing anything worthwhile.

Now that the old civilization had collapsed with the bomb, Montag was ready to move on —to see the world, to impart to others the memories and knowledge of the books that he and the other refugees had accumulated.

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