Slick slams the keys, startling Kara, who tells him he was heading someplace good: not drifting at all. Finding a trajectory. "Maybe you need to take a break," she says to his artist's drama: "Get yourself laid or something." That might dissipate the tension, he admits, and lights a smoke. She looks down at his ring finger, where a ring used to be, and asks if that's why she left. If Slick's a cheater, like her. If he had to do it, to make the pieces fit. He's ashamed, but admits the ring stayed on too long. "She didn't leave me, I left her." Kara looks away, because she knows this part already. If you could admit how much of your story you're writing, you'd never get out of bed.
Why did he leave? Because his wife wanted him to quit playing the piano. He was making decent money, but when their daughter was born, their special daughter, his wife said it wasn't enough. Tried to tie him down, make him get a real job. Stop creating, stop dreaming. Socrata loves Dreilide. And when she woke up he was gone. "I told her I might as well cut my heart out." We're all of us, somewhere inside, every age we've ever been. It's Kore talking now, as the lights flicker: "You start a family, the going gets tough, you ditch them? Did you ever stop thinking about yourself long enough to consider what you did to your kid?" When the lights come back, he's staring at her face, willing her to understand. To look at the flame in him and see the way it drives him on; she's the same. He didn't do anything to her, but she is her father's daughter. There's strength in that, and fear. He opens his mouth to speak.
As the lights come back on, Chief is fixing the camera screens in the brig control room; the guard assures him the locks are secure, and asks if he'd like to say goodbye to the prisoner. Slept right through it. "You gonna stay awhile?" the guard asks, lonely and bored. "Word is they're shipping her out tomorrow." The Eight in the rack, facing away from the camera, bleeds. Boomer walks down a corridor in her clothes.
"So maybe what your old man did was wrong, but he still left you with something," Slick reaches, staring at her back while she shakes: "He taught you how to play the piano." Which means nothing. It's hard to seem grateful for a gift you don't want anymore. She stopped playing after he left; her fingers ache, between the knuckles. He tries another way: "What about that song? That song he taught you, the one that makes you happy and sad at the same time? Play that for me." She reacts in anger, but really it's fear, because that's all anger ever is: the door she closed, coming open. Admitting who she's talking to, and what he took. All she's chosen to forget.