Jake is very drunk when he gets back to his room. As he tries and fails to fall asleep, he thinks again about how different things are in the nighttime than during the day. He curses women, and Brett in particular. He thinks that in order to have a woman as a friend, you have to be in love with her, but that in the end, as in everything, you always have to pay for it—the bill always comes. He then thinks that the key to enjoying life is to make sure you get your money's worth. But then he decides that this philosophy is just as absurd and unhelpful as every other philosophy he's ever come up with.
Once more faced with the lack of distractions in the moments before sleep, Jake must wrestle with his thoughts and the confusions of love and how to think about the world. He comes down on a strictly transactional philosophy—you have to pay for everything you get, and should always try to enjoy what you pay for. But in the end, this philosophy too seems to provide him with nothing to hold onto.
Jake then starts thinking about morality and about Mike's insults of Cohn. He feels bad for Cohn and wishes that Mike hadn't done that, but admits to himself that he enjoyed watching Mike do it, even though later he is disgusted that he enjoyed it.
The next two days in Pamplona are quiet but full of suspense as final preparations are made for the fiesta. The group sits in the café and watches peasants arrive on the buses. In the evening they watch a promenade through the town. In the mornings of those quiet two days, they all keep their own time, Cohn getting shaves, Jake taking walks, all meeting up for drinks. On the day before the fiesta, Jake goes to church and Brett wants to come along, wanting to see him at confession but he tells her she wouldn't understand it, and so she goes to get her fortune read by a gypsy instead.
As if before a storm or a battle, the suspense in the town is palpable. The sense that they are going towards something important seems to sustain the characters. When Jake tells Brett she wouldn't understand his confession he is saying in part that she wouldn't understand the Spanish he would say it in. But, on a deeper level, he is saying that she wouldn't understand confession because she doesn't seem to understand regret or even paying attention to anything you've done in the past.