Back to work, fresh off the phone to make an appointment with Rearden, Dagny receives an unexpected visitor.

He was young, tall and something about him suggested violence, though she could not say what it was, because the first trait one grasped about him was a quality of self-control that seemed almost arrogant. He had dark eyes, disheveled hair, and his clothes were expensive, but worn as if he did not care or notice what he wore.

Ellis Wyatt,” he said in self-introduction.

She leapt to her feet, involuntarily. She understood why nobody had or could have stopped him in the counter office.

He is at her desk because he understands she’s the only one there with a brain. He is there in response to the news that the Phoenix Durango is being forced off line. His ultimatum:

“If you have the intelligence to keep this corrupt organization functioning at all, you have the intelligence to judge this for yourself. We both know that if Taggart Transcontinental runs trains in Colorado the way it did five years ago, it will ruin me. I know that this is what you people intend to do. You expect to feed off me while you can and to find another carcass to pick dry after you have finished mine. That is the policy of most of mankind today. So here is my ultimatum: it is now in your power to destroy me; I may have to go; but if I go, I’ll make sure that I take all the rest of you along with me.”

Dagny, bound to her own sense of honor, cannot bare her heart and swear allegiance to this kindred soul. All she can do is take responsibility. She does so simply and directly.

Wyatt seems slightly taken aback. In a good way. “All right. Thank you. Good day.”