The Colonel and Miles research the signs of suicide, most of which Alaska never exhibited. She did, however, fit some of them: she had lost a loved one and she drank heavily. Miles remembers when Alaska said that she smoked to die, but the Colonel brushes the comment off as a joke. Miles also mentions her erratic moods, but the Colonel says that even though “she was up and down—from fire and brimstone to smoke and ashes,” that was mostly due to what happened with Marya. He points out that she definitely wasn’t thinking about suicide while she was making out with Miles, so something must have happened afterward that made her consider it.
Based on the police officer’s description of the accident, Miles and the Colonel are now faced with the very real possibility that Alaska committed suicide. When they try and look for signs that they should have seen this coming, however, they do not find many. The fact that Alaska said “To be continued” to Miles suggests that she at least wasn’t planning on killing herself at that moment, so something must have happened later that changed her mind.
Miles says that looking for answers is only making him hate Alaska. He thinks to himself that she is still refusing to answer his questions and still insisting on being mysterious. The Colonel tells him that there have to be answers and that they can figure them out if they’re smart enough.
Even Alaska’s death is mysterious, and this is extremely frustrating for Miles. But while Miles thinks that lacking answers means he didn’t know Alaska well, it might be that knowing Alaska means knowing that she is a mystery.
A student named Holly Moser interrupts them to say that she had received a message from Alaska. She tells them that when she was at the Waffle House near campus, the lights in the restaurant flickered on and off, and she thinks that it was Alaska trying to communicate in Morse code. Unfortunately, Holly tells them, she doesn’t understand Morse code. The Colonel calls Holly a “stupid bitch” once she leaves. Miles points out that Alaska wouldn’t have wanted him to ever call a girl a bitch.
Despite Miles’ insistence that he doesn’t know Alaska as well as he thought he did, he is able to intuit what she would have said in response to the Colonel’s comment about Holly.