Case wanders around the bar district. He stops at one and buys a beer. As he drinks, he investigates the “knot of rage” inside of him. It’s new—he began to feel it when Wintermute had recreated Linda Lee in the arcade, and then taken her away, “yanking away the simple animal promise of food, warmth, a place to sleep.” He realizes that he only noticed the rage after engaging with the “holo-construct of Lonny Zone.”
For years Case has been numb. But now, “he’d found this warm thing, this chip of murder.” He derisively thinks of it as “the meat talking,” and tries to ignore it.
Case dislikes the feeling of rage because it reminds him that he has a body with needs and emotions.
Cath finds Case in the bar. She mentions Molly, and how she “walks like Hideo.” Case asks about Hideo, and Cath explains that he’s 3Jane’s family retainer and bodyguard. Cath gives Case a derm “so we can be together.” He feels immediately high, but with the high comes a wave of anger. Looking at Cath, he can see “each pore […] eyes flat as dumb glass […] the most minute asymmetries.” Suddenly, turned off, he runs away from her back into the city.
In the past, Case has often turned to drugs to help him escape the “meat” of his body. However, the drug Cath gives him only heightens his focus on the parts of bodies that repulse him—her skin, eyes, and imperfections.
Looking up at the sky, Case watches the constellations of the hologram shift into the face of Linda Lee. Looking around at the other people on the street, he sees that they can see her too. Case walks all night, sobering up. He likes that he is unable to think as he comes down. As the holographic sun rises, he investigates the anger that still burns inside of him. He returns to his hotel, preparing to fall asleep, but is greeted by two men and a woman—the Turing Police.
Case assumes his vision of Linda Lee is drug-induced or else some kind of mental break, but the reaction of others on the street suggest they’re suffering from collective psychosis, or someone has programmed the projected sky to make this pattern. Although he’s taken drugs and had alcohol, Case is unable to numb himself to his newfound anger.