Raskolnikov worries that a search has already been conducted in his apartment—but none has. He finally takes inventory of the stolen materials: eight items, including two small boxes, a chain, a medal, and other small cases. He walks outside with the materials in his pocket and is determined to dispose of them.
After his swoon, Raskolnikov begins to think more rationally about his crime. He must cover his tracks and dispose of the evidence. What is irrational, at least to some, is his lack of interest in the objects themselves—the items he stole, and for which he killed.
He thinks of throwing the items in the canal but realizes there is no place he can throw them undetected, and he worries that they might float to the surface. He goes to a larger river, the Neva, but does not throw them in there, and instead decides to bury them. He finds a large stone, about fifty pounds in weight, in an abandoned yard near a workshop. He rolls the stone over, places the stolen items underneath, and rolls it back in place.
Raskolnikov buries the objects in a “tomb” of his own devising. He is proud of this hiding place—so proud, in fact, that he will brag of it to Zamyotov, though he claims when he does so that the tomb is merely “hypothetical” and he is describing how he would have committed the crime, if he were the killer.
Raskolnikov walks away and recounts the humiliation he experienced that day, airing his problems to the lieutenant. He realizes, suddenly, that he has not even examined the contents of the purse before hiding everything away. He wonders why, if he killed the old woman to rob her, he is not more interested in the items he has stolen. But he recognizes, too, that he had not cared about these items even in stealing them. He begins feeling more and more sick.
Raskolnikov comes to realize the strangeness of his crime. He thought he killed for money, but he has no desire to inventory the items he has stolen. If he did not kill to better his circumstances, why did he kill at all? Raskolnikov grapples with this question throughout the remainder of the novel.
He finds that he has walked, as if automatically, to his friend Razumikhin’s house. He walks up to the fifth floor and knocks, finding him at home. Razumikhin is shocked by Raskolnikov’s appearance, finds him looking physically ill, and believes he is “raving” about things, as though he is going insane.
Another instance of “automatic” behavior. He directs his steps toward Razumikhin, a friend who has stood by Raskolnikov in Raskolnikov’s most antisocial and unpleasant moments.
Raskolnikov says he is not insane, and gets up to leave. Razumikhin, again surprised, offers to split his translation work with Raskolnikov in order to give him a little bit of money. Razumikhin gives his friend pages to translate and an advance on wages, but Raskolnikov refuses them and runs outside.
Razumikhin has made his living giving lessons and translating texts for various publications, despite his limited knowledge of certain foreign languages. Raskolnikov balks at this kind of work, which he considers drudgery—he sees himself as special in some way.
On the street he is nearly hit by a wagon, and an onlooker claims some indigent men get hit purposely by carriages in order to demand compensation. A woman gives him twenty kopecks, thinking he is a beggar and in dire straits. He finds himself overlooking the palace and a large part of Petersburg—a view he had often taken in as a student, and which filled him with a kind of wonder and shade of sadness. He considers what has passed between his student days and the present, and throws the woman’s kopecks into the water below.
This is foreshadowing. Raskolnikov will later find Marmeladov crushed under the wheels of a wagon, although it is not apparent whether Marmeladov desired to be hit or was killed by accident. Note that many of Raskolnikov’s moments of realization occur on the bridges of Petersburg; at the end of the novel, it is on a bridge he bows down to ask forgiveness of God.
He walks for several hours and returns to his apartment, falls asleep, and awakes in the evening to the sound of the lieutenant thrashing and screaming at his landlady. Nastasya comes upstairs offering Raskolnikov food, and he asks her why the lieutenant has arrived and gotten so angry. Nastasya replies that it is the “blood,” and Raskolnikov is frightened. She goes on to say that no one was present—there was no lieutenant at the house—and by “blood” she meant the beating of the blood behind his ears, on account of his fever. Raskolnikov grows weak and falls asleep again.
In times of crisis, Raskolnikov retreats to his apartment and sleeps. A recurring motif in the novel involves Raskolnikov waking up to find new people in his room: some of whom he recognizes, other he doesn’t. Nastasya’s reference to “blood,” chilling as it is, has nothing to do with the murder; it is simply an instance of folk medicine. The blood in Raskolnikov’s ears, caused by his fever, has in Nastasya's opinion prompted Raskolnikov’s auditory hallucination.