ER
A Thousand Cranes

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Heathen: C | 1 USERS: A+
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A Thousand Cranes

Pratt and Gallant charge into the hospital, the latter whipped up into a semi-righteous rage. "You shouldn't have let them search the car," he babbles. "That's what you do when you're innocent and in a rush," Pratt insists. "I don't usually ride around with a bloody shirt in my car." They pass Susan, who asks if they've heard the news, and exposits for Pratt that Chen was the first one on the scene. "She okay?" Pratt asks. "A little freaked," Susan says. Gallant isn't quite done being bitter about the situation with the cops, so he complains that Pratt is basically just bending over and inviting the cops to stick it where no sun should ever shine, ever. "That's the way it works sometimes," Pratt says, because he's worldly. "Yeah, if you let it," Gallant says. Pratt insists that there's no point in fighting any of this, and Gallant persists in disagreeing with this, and the argument goes on and on and they're totally losing me. I think what happened sucks, and that the cops were pricks, but it's not like they were pulled over for no reason at all. They matched an ID, vague as it was. "We could be perfect like Gandhi, but as soon as crap goes down, we'll be the first ones laid out on the street with a gun to the head," Pratt explains. He launches into the "I Had It Rough" monologue -- you know, the one about how he grew up in a shoebox in a dumpster behind the McDonald's where Hamburglar hung out and tried to push low-grade meat patties to innocent young kids. He concludes, "It happens to you enough, you get the message: You are not equal. You are not a full citizen. You are first, last, and above all else one thing, and one thing only: a suspect."

A nurse wheels Patrick outside to wait for the van to take him home. Susan -- having meditated on this and decided that a dying boy trumps a grieving mother -- shows up to tantalize Patrick one last time with her gravelly voice and spunky wool hat. He sulks that his mother left early to make sure the home hospice stuff is all set up. "I think you're doing the right thing," she coos. "I think it doesn't matter what you think," he pouts. Then he apologizes for being pissed at her, which he bloody well should, and explains that death just feels a little too imminent these days. He rattles off all the things he always wanted to do, and bless him, first on the list is getting drunk at a college party. Patrick, paradoxical though it seems, that is both an overrated and highly underrated experience. I did a lot of puking that can attest to that. He also mentions windsurfing and getting married and having kids. "Even after I got sick, I kept tricking myself into believing that I had more time," Patrick concludes wistfully. His ride shows up, but not in time to head off one of Susan's wild impulses. She stands up firmly. "I can't get you into college, and windsurfing's nuts, but come on, let's get out of here," she announces. Oh my God. They're going to elope and try to impregnate her. "Call his mom," Susan says. "Tell her we went on a date," Patrick grins, standing up excitedly. "I'll have him back by curfew," giggles Susan. "Maybe. Say 'maybe,'" whispers Patrick with a wink. The guy stares after them, smiling. "I remember my first doctor," he thinks.

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