Dubenko arrives, pleased to see the gang all together. "I didn't get to finish talking about my research with free radicals," he beams. They all stare at him and then slowly try to escape. "Hold up, come one, you might learn something," he says, pulling them off into an exam room or somesuch. He flips on a light board, which they'd normally use to pin up and study x-rays, and begins talking about free radicals and how they're linked to so many things. He quizzes Abby a few times, and she stares at him with her arms crossed, giving him rudely perturbed responses or stone-faced silence. He tries to make her draw an oxygen atom, then gives up and scribbles all over the board and the wall -- complicated equations that tie to his theory. All the while, he comes back to Abby and calls on her more times. Everyone is standing there in uncomfortable silence, and Abby is shooting him genuine daggers. It's sort of sad and sort of appropriate. Dubenko's eyes are all alight with excitement over his research, and all these clods can do is stand there and resent him for it; at the same time, though, his weird obsession with putting Abby on the spot is a little unsettling, and it's either leading to a torrid affair in Trauma Green, or it will go nowhere when his guest-star contract expires and he'll disappear into the wild blue yonder. Earnestly, Dubenko reaches out the marker to Abby to get her to finish the oxygen atom he began drawing for her: "I've done the hard part. All you have to do is add electrons." In my notes, Word AutoCorrected my gibberish version of "electrons" to "erections," which I hope is not a stunningly prescient error teasing the fact that when Dubenko does head off into the wild blue yonder, Abby will be riding him hard all the way there. She glares at him and then hisses rudely, "I have patients to see." As she storms away, we fade to black wondering when everyone on this show went insane and/or developed really bad attitudes: Neela's been surly and ungrateful for the opportunity to pay rent, Abby is blatantly rude to Dubenko here without ever having tried to be polite first, Ray is a cocky asshat, Pratt is running around like the king of the junkyard, and the new med students are boring losers. It's like all the venom and weirdness that went into the Romano character is now being sprinkled around aimlessly to everyone.
After the break, a janitor is painting over Dubenko's scrawlings. Abby mouths off to Neela that she knew how to draw a damn oxygen atom, but that Dubenko just gives her the creeps. She's not entirely unjustified in thinking that, I guess, even though I kind of felt sorry for Dubenko and wanted to hide under my couch when he was standing there trying to reach out to them all and they gave him a brick wall in return. Which he promptly tagged with his Permanent Marker of Scientific Shenanigans. Pratt gives us an update on the score: Abby has seventeen, Neela has twelve, and Ray has twenty-one. Ray wants to go home early if he hits twenty-five before the end of his shift. Abby, at Pratt's prompting, reveals that she has several more on the verge of being discharged. "Abby versus Ray," Pratt sing-songs. "Neela, you're getting your ass kicked. Start making decisions." Then he muses that perhaps twenty-five was too low a target, since Ray has had such an easy time of it. "I'd better up the target to thirty," he decides. Ray grins as Abby and Neela once more unite in mute hatred of the new punk.