Chapter by Chapter Summary of Fight Club

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1. As the novel begins we find Tyler Durden holding a gun inside the Narrator's mouth. Tyler tells the Narrator that the first step toward eternal life is death. The Narrator mentions that he and Tyler used to be friends and that people were always asking him about Tyler. Tyler assures the Narrator that they won't really die, but that they will become legends. 2. The Narrator reveals that the building they are standing on, the Parker-Morris building, will be demolished in ten minutes. A bomb has been set to knock the building down. In the building, in the one hundred ninety-one floors, the Space Monkeys in the Mischief Committee of Project Mayhem are throwing file cabinets and furniture out the windows. 3. Now, the Narrator says, there are nine minutes left. He details numerous ways to make home explosives. When the bombs detonate the building will topple onto a national museum, which is Tyler's true target. The Narrator states the entire situation is really about Marla Singer. He wants to be with Tyler, Tyler wants to be with Marla, Marla wants to be with the Narrator. This creates an awkward triangle. The Narrator tells Tyler that if he wants to be a legend, he'll make him a legend. He remembers everything. 4. Chapter 2 moves the narrative to another location entirely. It is not initially revealed where this chapter is set. The Narrator tells us about Bob, a former bodybuilder. Bob holds the Narrator in a tight embrace. The Narrator tells us that Bob has unnaturally large breasts and finely parted blonde hair. Bob cries as he holds the Narrator and then encourages the Narrator to cry as well. The Narrator reveals that Bob is crying because six months prior, his testicles were removed and he began hormone support therapy. The testosterone ration was too high and his body raised the estrogen to seek a balance. This led to his development of breasts. 5. The Narrator says that this is when he cries, when Bob asks him to. It allows him to lose himself in his despair, he says. He also reveals that Bob loves him because Bob thinks that the Narrator's testicles were removed too. This is because the two are at a testicular support group called Remaining Men Together. Around them twenty other men are locked in embrace, crying about their lot in life. There is also one woman there: Marla Singer. 6. Like the Narrator, Marla Singer does not have testicular cancer. The Narrator reveals that he has been seeing Marla at the other support groups he has been crashing. She is faking these conditions just as he is. With Marla watching, the Narrator can't bring himself to cry. He has to cry in order to sleep. 7. Moving back further in time, the Narrator says that he first began attending the groups two years ago after consulting a doctor about his insomnia. He hopes that the doctor can give him some medication to help him sleep but instead the doctor tells him to get more exercise and chew Valerian root. The doctor tells him that if he wants to see real pain, he should attend these support group meetings and see the people dying of cancer or stricken with parasites. The Narrator takes up his suggestion. 8. He meets a woman named Chloe who has brain parasites. The Narrator describes her as a "skeleton dipped in yellow wax". She tells him that the saddest thing about her predicament is that no one would have sex with her. She tries to seduce him, but the Narrator is not aroused. The group then moved to guided meditation. Each participant is encouraged to enter "their cave" and find "their power animal". The Narrator's power animal, he discovers, is a penguin. Then the group members embraced, but the Narrator did not cry then. He didn't cry until he met Bob. 9. Bob was a bodybuilder who destroyed his body with anabolic steroids. After multiple divorces he was diagnosed with testicular cancer. Then he went bankrupt. It was at their first meeting, while Bob was holding the Narrator, that he was able to cry. As a result, he...
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