After the party, Titus has what he thinks is a dream. In the dream, he plays games for free. Suddenly, he senses that somebody is “nudging” his feed. He asks who it is, and a voice replies that the police want to know if he’s a victim of the Rumble Spot hack. Titus replies that he is, and the police tell him, “Go back to sleep.” The police explain they’ll be running tests on him. Titus is suspicious—it can’t really be the police who are monitoring him. But the voices give him “a lizard with a nice new collar,” and Titus accepts it. He thinks that he might be talking to a hacker group called “the Coalition of Pity.” After Titus wakes up, he doesn’t remember his dream for weeks.
Even in their dreams, it seems, the characters are controlled by their feeds. There is truly no escape from the feed’s influence—day and night, characters are bombarded by ads for products they don’t need. There appear to be hackers who are trying to interfere with people’s feeds (though for what reason is never made clear). The passage demonstrates Titus’s childish desire for new “stuff,” like a lizard, but it also suggests that someone may be continuing to tamper with his feed.
The chapter ends with an interlude about a program called “Amurica: A Portrait in Geezers.” People recall seeing hawks and eagles flying through the skies. They remember beautiful forests and days when the temperature never got above a hundred degrees.
The natural world, it would seem, is in ruins, and the world’s temperature has risen to the point where few animals can survive anymore.