The Outsiders Chapter 8 Summary

Instructor: Dori Starnes

Dori has taught college and high school English courses, and has Masters degrees in both literature and education.

Ponyboy visits Johnny and Dally in the hospital, talks with Cherry, and tries to suppress his growing dread about what the rumble will bring. Read a summary of Chapter 8 of ''The Outsiders'', then test yourself.


Ponyboy Curtis and Johnny Cade are runaway juvenile delinquents turned heroes. When Johnny killed a boy named Bob, Pony and Johnny ran away. They rescued some children from a burning church, but Johnny was badly injured in the attempt and both boys were returned to Tulsa. According to the papers, Pony could be separated from his brothers, and Johnny will be charged with manslaughter…if he survives.

The Outsiders

Visiting Johnny

Ponyboy and Two-Bit Mathews, who is supposed to be watching Pony while his brothers are at work, arrive at the hospital to see Johnny. The nurses refuse to let them in to see Johnny, but the doctor intervenes and lets them in. Ponyboy knows this means Johnny is in really bad shape.

They go in to see Johnny, who is in bad shape and a lot of pain. Regardless, he is happy to see Pony and Two-Bit. He tells them about a visitor he had, Tim Shepard, who is the leader of another group of Greasers, or poor kids from the East side of Tulsa. Then he asks Pony to do him a favor. He wants Pony to get him a copy of Gone With the Wind, which Pony was reading to him back in the church in Windrixville.

Pony asks Two-Bit to go to the gift shop and buy the book. Two-Bit leaves and Johnny tells Pony he doesn't want to die. Pony tells Johnny that he won't die. Just then, a nurse comes in. She tells Johnny that his mother is outside, wanting to see him. Johnny refuses to see his mother, and then he faints.

Two-Bit and Ponyboy are told to leave, so they give Gone With the Wind to the nurse and go to see Dally Winston, who is also in the hospital after being burned dragging Johnny out of the burning church. In the hallway, they see Johnny's mother. She's making a fuss about not being able to see Johnny. When she notices Pony and Two-Bit, she tells them it's their fault that Johnny's there. Two-Bit answers that it isn't a surprise that Johnny 'hates your guts'.

Visiting Dally

Dally is happy to see them, though he's aggravated about still being in the hospital. There is going to be a rumble with the Socs, the rich West side kids who torment the poor East side Greasers, tonight. Dally is not happy to miss it, and he says Tim Shepard came to tease him about it. Dally tells Pony that he thought he'd killed him when he hit Pony after the fire (Pony's jacket was on fire), but he's glad Pony is okay. Though Pony has never really liked Dally, he thinks they are joined together in this.

Dally asks about Johnny, and Pony replies that Johnny isn't doing well at all. Dally is quiet for a moment and then asks Two-Bit for his switchblade. It is Two-Bit's prized possession, but he hands it over to Dally without complaining. Dally puts it under his pillow and tells them that he will be out of the hospital in time to fight tonight.

Pony and Two-Bit leave the hospital and head back toward Pony's house. Pony is sick, and Two-Bit notices. Pony begs Two-Bit not to tell his older brother Darry, or Darry won't let Pony fight.

Two-Bit remarks that Darry is stricter than most people's parents. He is quiet for a moment, then tells Pony that all that keeps Darry from being one of the Socs is them. Pony knows.

They continue walking. Pony tells Two-Bit he's very worried about the fight. He feels like something bad is going to happen. Two-Bit doesn't feel the same. To him, the rumble sounds like a lot of fun.

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