Part 4, Chapter 17 Notes from The Fountainhead

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The Fountainhead Part 4, Chapter 17

Roark goes to see Wynand both at his home and his office, but is told that Wynand never wants to see him again. He writes Wynand a letter telling him that he can start over, that change is possible, and that if Wynand can't forgive himself, Roark would like to offer his forgiveness.

Dominique, in the house designed by Roark, contemplates the beauty of the leaves of a tree in the yard. The earth is only a background, but it is not owned by anyone, as she had previously thought. It is beautiful because it cannot be owned by anyone.

Roark has been renting a house in Monadnock Valley. He is not surprised when Dominique comes to see him. He asks her to wait until Gail has recovered, but she says he will not recover. She has made her decision, and he tells her he loves her. This is what she needs to do, and he understands that, just as the Cortlandt explosion was what he needed to do. They kiss passionately, filling the void that has been present for seven years. She tells him however he wants it, she will from now on be completely his, whether as his wife or mistress.

The next morning, Dominique dresses in Roark's pajamas and phones the police to tell them that her star sapphire ring which Roark gave her (there is no such ring) has been stolen from his home. The sheriff and two reporters show up; she has ensured that the story will be all over the papers, and that she and Roark, adulteress and convict, will be linked. Now Gail is free to smear her in his papers as well; she tells Roark that she is now completely free and completely happy.

Alvah asks Gail what to do with the story; he tells him to print it, in whatever way he wishes. Alvah tells Gail he should divorce Dominique right away, and Gail consents.

Gail returns home to Dominique. She tells him about Roark, about when they first met and how he raped her, and that she has given him a story that will raise circulation.

Guy Francon calls Dominique and tells her she should stay with him until the Cortlandt trial. She agrees, goes to his home, and realizes that he will not question or reproach her. He tells her that Roark is the right man for her and can visit any time he wishes.

Alvah starts a crusade to clear Wynand's name by blaming everything on his disloyal wife, and it works. Circulation goes up again, and Gail gives Alvah free reign to do whatever he thinks will work.

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