Thereafter, Nick begins to see Tris as a past girlfriend, a Hot Topic mall hussy who wears slutty short leather skirts, mass-produced “vintage” Ramones T-shirts, yellow leggings and who likes to be a party girl. He's wised up after getting over Tris' betrayal. It's relevant that later Tris is humanized to the point that the readers begin to care about her real intentions and discover she's not the groupie-fatale epiphyte they think. She tries her best to not cause more pain. "I want to — but I can’t — hate her", Norah discloses.
Norah's impressed with the explanation Nick offers her about her Tikkun Olan conversation, and his straight-edge philosophy totally clicks with her: "...the real punk goes down now with a straight edge: no alcohol, no drugs, no cigarettes, no skanks. The real punk now is the only punk left after all the madness: the music, the message".
The intertwined descriptive style of Nick & Norah's Infinite Playlist never loses its consciousness of the occlusive threats around the night in N.Y., but manages to wrap them with sunny smiles. On the edge of Times Square the rain lightens Nick and Norah's hearts: "she is so fucking beautiful, the way her mouth is uncertain about whether or not to smile".
Instants so lyrical as this one fixate us in such a hypnotic state we won't see the train coming into the subway, or the turnstiles. We're wandering, just as Nick and Norah, walking down Seventh Avenue, not knowing if we’re going to the subway or walking all the way back to the Lower East Side...