Two years later, Sam has removed himself from his former life and is now living on a sailboat on a lake, far from home, having taken a job as a contractor's assistant and for the most part drinking away his free time.His habits are causing habitual lateness and annoying his employer, who cautions Sam about repeated lateness.Getting up to relieve himself from the side of the boat has caught the chagrin of the governing board of the lake and the "wrath" of Alaird Dupree (because it is openly visible to other tenants and the small seafood restaurant nearby), the agent acting on behalf of the board.
The two end up sharing a meal and playing instruments together for the rest of the night.
Sam neglects to tell Quentin that he was not the piece's actual author.
He storms over to where Emily had left it beside the road and begins to place it in a dumpster but stops, noticing the notebooks and discs, and begins to listen to them back on the boat, and read through the collection of lyrics and writings Josh left behind.
He even begins to teach himself some his son's material.
Quentin is embarrassed because his mother has had issues with (unspecified) responsibilities, even spending his junior year of high school living in a car, and has vowed never to lower himself to that level of poverty again.
At the mall, Sam buys Quentin new clothing to give him a style, and develop confidence from it.
Quentin shows Sam the 1978 Gibson Les Paul hanging in the store, but is unable to afford it (a source of good-natured joking between Quentin and Del).
Upon leaving the store, Sam watches a staged meeting between Quentin and Willy, a bass guitarist, in hopes that they can include him in their performances, but Sam is resistant to starting a band.
Meanwhile, Quentin is revealed as extremely shy of the opposite sex, which Sam attempts to help him through, though Quentin finds the advice generally unhelpful.