ER
If I Should Fall From Grace

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If I Should Fall From Grace

Down the hall, Mark chases Elizabeth, who angrily repeats all her suspicions about Kovac's reluctance to let her touch his patients. She feels like the hospital is ganging up on her, an accusation which might've had weight if we'd seen it start to build, say, last week. Still, it's clear why her reputation might be taking a beating, especially if she's a tornado of saliva and fury. Mark thinks Elizabeth is being a tad egocentric and paranoid. "AM I?" she screams.

Because his system has worked so well thus far, Gallant decides to accost yet another ER employee -- this time, it's Abby "The Despair Up There" Lockhart, who speculates that Carter should show up in a few minutes. Gallant conspiratorially notes that he would happily find Carter himself if she could just tell him where to look. Did he not hear? Carter isn't there. That means he's probably at home. As in, not at the hospital, not within scouting distance, not crouching in the corner playing jacks. In any sense of that phrase. Abby more politely shares that she really, truly can't point him in Carter's direction. Frank waddles into the reception area and bitches that the lounge is devoid of donuts. Abby attributes it to a lack of petty cash, but Frank insists there was $50 in the lockbox yesterday. I'm throwing my support behind those who think Neecole pocketed the cash.

Susan tiredly wanders over and calls out to anyone listening that she needs a Psych consult for a patient who thinks he's a vampire. "Count Fred?" Abby asks, walking toward Susan. "Where is he?" Susan refers her to Exam Two, then follows, wondering why Abby's so worried that Count Fred -- a.k.a. Mr. Hopper -- isn't being supervised. "He's a vampire," Abby says casually, quickening her step. "He drinks people's blood." Susan doesn't believe it, but sure enough, they find Count Fred in one of the trauma rooms sucking blood from a bag like Capri Sun from its convenient foil package. His jacket is thrown about his shoulders like a cape, and he peers up sheepishly at Susan, Abby and Gallant. But he keeps drinking. Susan just stares. "That's nasty," she complains. Abby rolls her eyes. Gallant doesn't react at all; it's nothing he didn't see on Survivor a few weeks ago.

We come back from the opening commercial break with a really strange shot of Carter in drag. No, whoops, that's Gamma. Her grandson comes into the dining room, tie loose around his neck, and finds Gamma dining on a grapefruit and frostily bickering with her driver, Alger. He claims the ignition coil on her car is broken, but Gamma thinks he's lying and just doesn't want her driving. Carter's fine with that -- he figures the reason they have Alger is so that Gamma won't have to do something so lowly as operating a motor vehicle. Right in front of Alger, Gamma snipes that the chauffeur was her husband's idea and now seems like an unnecessary expense. Alger resists the urge to give Gamma a grapefruit facial. Sipping his morning coffee, Carter suggests that Alger just wants to ensure Gamma's safety. "I'm a big girl, John. I don't need a chaperone," Gamma snots. The camera follows Carter while he shrugs on an overcoat; Gamma calls out a query to him, but stops mid-sentence, her pause punctuated by a dull thump. Gamma has collapsed. She did it very carefully, too, taking great pains to land on her back, loll her head to the side and bend her knees just-so, because a lady's skirt never rides up when a lady faints on her imported rug. A lady also knows that it's most flattering to let one's right arm land just above one's head, subtle mimicry of the famed hand-to-forehead flutter of, say, a Scarlett O'Hara wondering whatever shall she do, and wherever shall she go. Gamma's such a damsel. Carter is distressed, though, refusing to acknowledge the artistry of his grandmother's collapse.

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