The former football player, and at present a feature writer for a Paris newspaper, is in Oran on assignment when the city is quarantined. He first tries to leave the city by appealing to the civil authorities. Then when that fails, he offers money to several shady characters belonging to Oran's underground. None of the contacts, however, are able to arrange a successful escape. Rambert feels unjustly exiled in this legally proclaimed city of exile. He has few friends, no family — in fact, no reason to be included in the quarantine; he is certain that neither Jean Tarrou nor Dr. Rieux can understand his constant demand for release. The plague changes Rambert from a hack journalist into a responsible adult. Early in the book, he pleaded to leave so that he could return to his wife. Later he willingly elects to remain in Oran and assist Rieux rather than take flight to claim a solitary happiness for himself. He has joined his conscience in a moral commitment to an allegiance higher than himself.