Spring, the narrator, and signs of a nearing war all return to the small Italian town. The narrator goes back to the house in which he and the other officers had been barracked the previous fall and finds it unchanged. You meet his roommate, Rinaldi, who immediately begins pumping him about his leave, trying to begin a locker-room conversation about their respective sexual adventures. Rinaldi is spirited, bubbly, Italian; Henry is offhand, ironic. You get the feeling that he doesn\'t want to talk about his leave even with his good friend. And he seems to pay no attention to Rinaldi\'s repeated vows of love for a newly arrived British nurse, Catherine Barkley.
NOTE: REPETITION When a writer wants to make sure you remember a name or place, often he will skillfully work it in through repetition.
Look at the way Hemingway plays with Catherine Barkley\'s name here. In less than a page he has Rinaldi speaking the name four times, never in a way that sounds forced or phony, but guaranteeing that it will stay in your mind. At this point you can be pretty sure that Miss Barkley will appear again in the book.
That evening Frederic Henry tries to explain to his friend the priest why he didn\'t visit the priest\'s family in Abruzzi. \"I myself felt as badly as he did and could not understand why I had not gone. It was what I had wanted to do.... I explained, winefully, how we did not do the things we wanted to do; we never did such things.\"
The drunken, stream-of-consciousness paragraph that follows gives you insight into Henry and into the way the war has affected him. He had wanted to go to a place \"where it was clear cold and dry... and the peasants took off their hats and called you Lord and there was good hunting.\" But instead he had immersed himself in the nighttime, urban life of drinking and women. It\'s as if the world of Abruzzi, with its clear daylight and age-old values, has because of the war become an anachronism Henry can\'t believe in, as much as he would like to. Because he can\'t believe in that world he must lose himself in the exciting but uncaring world of the night. He realizes that he\'s confused--\"I could not tell it; as I cannot tell it now\"--but the priest appears to understand.
The chapter closes with more talk of the war. The officers trumpet the military hunger for battle: \"Must attack. Shall attack!\" The priest, more humane, admits that in war he \"supposes\" it\'s necessary to attack, but he\'s far from jingoistic about it.