Carter snaps into crisis mode, ordering Gallant to get them masks. Frantically, Carter dashes into the lounge in search of the informational posters sent monthly by the Department of Public Health. True to form, they're shoved away in the Things We're Required By Law to Have, But Don't Want Anyone To See cabinet. Carter unrolls one of the posters and chokes, "Oh, man." He is terrified. He must've found the Anatomy of a Female poster. Frightened, he runs back outside and tells Gallant to find Susan immediately. Carter then scoops up Bree and shouts, "Follow me, quickly!" The Twit Family Robinson trots behind him obediently, and in utter confusion. "Why are we running?" Robin chirps. Carter bursts into a private room and deposits Bree carefully on the bed. Kicky crisis music swells. Carter swoops out of the room, leaving the family alone and terrified and totally uninformed, because in times of crisis, you never say what's wrong unless you're about to go to commercial.
Carter finds Susan and drags her back to the window that peeks in on Adam and Bree. "I think I've got two cases of smallpox," he finally pants. "Oh my God," Susan replies boredly, with all the worry of someone who's saying, "In what universe is that haircut not hideous?" She acts like she thinks smallpox is a miniature and less-threatening variety of some mythical largepox. She sucks. Susan tries convincing Carter that it's just a lousy bout of chicken pox, but he rattles off a list of reasons why it can't be. Susan still doesn't absorb it. "We haven't had a case [of smallpox] here since the '40s," she points out. "It's airborne," Carter intones melodramatically. "We need to lock this place down." We fade to black wondering when Susan graduated from the Joey Tribbiani "Smell the Fart" School of Acting, and whether it's too late to send a congratulatory mylar balloon.
Front desk. Music of A Pox On You. The ER staff congregates to discuss handing the smallpox threat; security has apparently closed off the elevator, stairwells, and exits. Jerry notes that they're trying to lock the ambulance-bay door. Chen makes some dumb comment about fire hazards, as if that's as big a worry as a biological weapon. Susan leafs through a binder and scowls that she can't figure out which agency to call -- the city, the county, or the state department. "Check the emergency response plan," Carter suggests. She notes dryly, "This is the emergency response plan." Luka wants everyone to calm down, because frankly, smallpox is pretty far-fetched. "Have you ever seen smallpox before?" Carter says defensively. But that is the point Luka's trying to make. He figures the kids could have anything else -- scabies, impetigo, even herpes. And since they're, you know, eight, let's go ahead and add all the STDs on there, because kids today are just bangin'. Luka wants Carter to slow down and be sure he's right before going any further. "Want to risk exposure to the city?" Carter snots. Malik asks how bad smallpox is. "Killed half of Europe," Carter tosses back. Malik freaks. Gallant points out that the CDC has a vaccine, but it's in Atlanta, which wigs Malik out even more. Chen sticks up for Luka and announces that smallpox has, without doubt, been eradicated. The Jinx Fairy cackles and throws down a shot of tequila. "I heard the Russians have some [smallpox on] ice," Jerry says helpfully. "If a terrorist group got...." "Shut up, Jerry," Carter says flatly, but firmly. Susan gives the order to lock down the ER, saying that all the appropriate authorities are en route. "What do you want to do with the critical patients?" Luka asks, directing his question at Carter the Instigator. "You're asking me?" Carter asks innocently. Come on, Carter. Did Mark die in vain? Fill the void.