The major event was that Dagny Taggart built a train line with this screwy metal invented by Hank Reardon. This duo are pretty much the greatest people in the book, since they were born rich yet still make it their biggest priority to make as much money as possible. I think at one point they both agree that using up the earth's natural resources is absolutely fine, since "someone will someday figure out a replacement." These are the protagonists. These are the people I'm supposed to relate to. Anyway, long story short: they build this line called the John Galt Line and it's amazing and they blow everyone away and prove them wrong. And then they fuck:
He stood looking down at her naked body, he leaned over, she heard his voice - it was more a statement of contemptuous triumph than a question: "You want it?" Her answer was more a gasp than a word, her eyes closed, her mouth open: "Yes."
While Dagny's getting it rough from Hank (who, by the way, tells her that he doesn't love her and wanted her in the way one wanted a whore), everyone's walking around saying, "Who is John Galt?" It's more of a rhetorical question, really, a symbol for the type of question that will never have an answer. Dagny used this idea for the name of her train line, I suppose because "The Chicken or the Egg? Line" was just a little too long.
Also, there's a pirate. I swear to God, there is a PIRATE roaming on the high seas pilaging boats owned by "The People's Republic of [Insert European Country Here]." (This novel is supposed to take place "in the near future," and I'm guessing Ms. Rand expected all of Europe to be Red by 1970. Also, she didn't figure in the idea that people wouldn't ride trains anymore. Whatevs.) The pirate's name is Ragnar Danneskjold. Seriously. And guess what? He happened to go to Patrick Henry University (SYMBOLISM ALERT!) with our favorite rich Argentinian playboy, Fransisco Domingo Carlos Andres Sebastian d'Anconia.
I've only read a fourth of this novel and there's already a fucking pirate.