ER
Here And There

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Here And There

Neela retrieves the young boy from his mother's car; the mother speaks only Spanish and frantically hands over a note that Rosales says she got from the free clinic. It tells them to check the boy for meningitis. Neela appreciates this lovely little Post-It about as much as she would embrace getting meningitis herself.

Gallant treats a girl whose mother explains that she can't keep anything down, and that her belly hurts; Whitley translates. Gallant diagnoses dehydration, but not by a large enough factor to keep her there, so instead he gives her something that looks like Gatorade and prescribes one cup her hour. Aw. Gallant is so cute. I spent the whole hour afraid his face was going to get blown off (spoiler: it doesn't) and fearing that it would prove my coping skills inferior.

As the girl and her mother leave, Jackson's supply truck pulls away, too -- I have no proper idea where they are right now, that the supply truck would be there too, suddenly, and ditching them -- but Jackson cheerfully offers to bring Gallant something from Kuwait. "Think you can score me some citrus?" Gallant grins. He's been craving mangoes. Jackson isn't sure a mango counts as a citrus fruit, so they settle on orange and part company with a merry wave. Jackson is clearly going to die. It's good to know that the old rules of foreshadowing at County General also prove true in the Middle East. The young Iraqi girl loses her scarf and starts running after it. Her mother starts screaming, "Jamila!" as if the world were coming to an end, which seems a bit premature since all she's doing is scampering after some cloth. But she turns out to have been prescient; Jackson's transport truck abruptly explodes -- well, I guess that's redundant; nothing ever quite casually or slowly explodes -- near Jamila. Gallant immediately sprints over to them...

...as we see Neela back with Meningitis Kid, screaming for them to intubate him. "This kid's burning up," she yells.

Cut to Jamila, who actually is burning up, and oh my God, we got it before, but by now we have gotten it, taken the antibiotics that cured it, and then been exposed to a mutant strain that is resistant to those outdated drugs. Jackson is wailing as they drag him from the flaming truck. And then he's joined by a chorus of shrill screams from both Jamila and her mother. It is a piercing back-and-forth, as if they are communicating in a language of agonizingly high-pitched bursts, with an occasional harmonized chorus. And they will not stop. They sound like broken dog whistles. I swear, I am trying to recap this with a sympathetic eye, but my temples are pulsing and my roommate is seriously shouting, "Oh my God, is everything okay in there?" And I'm seriously considering Neela's remedy of mixing pills and wine. As they try to treat both of them and get transports to the hospital, we cut to a very expensive aerial shot indeed of the desolate surroundings in which the van exploded. The wreckage flames impressively as we fade to black.

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