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Chapter 21
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  • 1. Catcher in the Rye Chapter 21
  • 2.
    • Holden arrives at the apartment building and believes he has had "the best break in years" because the elevator boy is a substitute who does not recognize him.
    • Holden makes up a silly lie, which ends up confusing the elevator boy enough that he lets Holden up without asking too many questions.
  • 3.
    • I told him, in this very casual voice, to take me up to the Dicksteins'.
    • The Dicksteins were these people that had the other apartment on our floor.
    • He had the elevator doors all shut and all, and was all set to take me up, and then he turned around and said, "They ain't in. They're at a party on the fourteenth floor."
  • 4.
    • "That's all right," I said. "I'm supposed to wait for them. I'm their nephew."
    • He gave me this sort of stupid, suspicious look. "You better wait in the lobby, fella," he said.
    • "I'd like to--I really would," I said. "But I have a bad leg. I have to hold it in a certain position. I think I'd better sit down in the chair outside their door."
  • 5.
    • I got off at our floor--limping like a bastard--and started walking over toward the Dicksteins' side.
    • Then, when I heard the elevator doors shut, I turned around and went over to our side.
    • I was doing all right. I didn't even feel drunk anymore.
  • 6.
    • Then I took out my door key and opened our door, quiet as hell.
    • Then, very, very carefully and all, I went inside and closed the door.
    • I really should've been a crook.
  • 7.
    • Holden makes a tiptoed journey through the apartment to Phoebe’s room.
    • When she is not in her bed, Holden remembers that she sometimes sleeps in D.B.’s room.
    • She doesn't like her own room because it's too little, she says.
    • She says she likes to spread out. That kills me.
  • 8.
    • He finds her sleeping soundly and watches for awhile.
    • Before he wakes her, Holden sits down at the desk and reads one of her school notebooks.
  • 9.
    • Then, finally, I woke her up.
    • I mean I couldn't sit there on that desk for the rest of my life, and besides, I was afraid my parents might barge in on me all of a sudden and I wanted to at least say hello to her before they did.
    • So I woke her up.
  • 10.
    • As expected, Phoebe is thrilled to see him.
    • She tells him about all the recent happenings in her life.
    • Holden listens with a great deal of care and affection and is happy just to be with her.
  • 11.
    • She tells Holden their parents are at a party in Connecticut and will not be home until late.
    • Suddenly she realizes Holden is home from Pencey earlier than he should be and asks if he has been kicked out again.
    • Holden tries to lie his way out of the situation, but Phoebe sees through him and gets upset. She covers her head with a pillow and refuses to talk to him.