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When Night Meets Day

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When Night Meets Day

We dissolve from Romano and his stump to Mia, next to whom the baby appears. Pratt has wheeled him in, and proudly introduces Mia to her son. She's delighted.

Dressler is a goner. He's been down for sixty-two minutes, and even Carter, the King of Hey, Baby, I Can Go All Night If You Want Me To, has to admit that no amount of pumping will revive this man. Angrily, he tears off his gloves and faces the terrified Mrs. Dressler and her wide-eyed moppets. This is the scene Pratt witnessed at the beginning of the show when he looked down the hall and saw Carter talking to a random family; this is why Carter was in such a crap mood way back then. Except that then is now. This is so Spaceballs. I'm channeling Rick Moranis somehow. Tiredly, Carter explains that Dressler went into arrest just as they were wheeling him upstairs for special attention. "I couldn't get him back," Carter chokes. The moppets widen their eyes. "Did he know what was happening?" asks Mrs. Dressler, stunned, her eyes fast becoming lakes. "He wanted me..." Carter begins, staring down at the children. "To, uh, tell you that he loved...loves...you all very much," he finishes with difficulty.

We're now in the morning phase of the night shift. I almost miss the Graphic of We'll Tell You What Time It Is When We Bloody Well Want To, Smartass. Pratt hands off a bunch of patients to Chen, and then introduces her to his prize patient, Ray Jamison. He's proud of himself for picking up a heart flutter and basically saving the man's life. I guess this is the dawn of Pratt's realization that simple doctoring on seemingly minor cases can be just as rewarding as the sexy adrenalin-charged emergency cases. And I'm sure we're all thrilled to hear it. Jamison looks happy. "I'll come see you at your office," he says. "This is my office," Pratt replies. "Or, was. I just work in the hospital." Jamison thinks that's sad, because Pratt is "a fine doctor," and evidently all fine doctors should have private practices, leaving emergency work to the oafs. Pratt thanks him gratefully, lays a kiss on Chen, and surfs on outta there. "Congratulations, Greg," Chen smiles. "You survived the County experience." Pratt beams. "Oh, no, not just survived it," he says. "I whooped its ass."

Cut to Carter's whooped ass. Pratt got all the rejuvenation, and Carter got all the disappointment and disconnect. He looks completely lost as he skulks out of the hospital -- and bumps into Abby. "Hey," she says, uncomfortable but with a flash of hope in her eyes. She tries to make small talk about the eclipse but he's not having it, and she notices the extra bit of weariness in his expression. "You have a rough shift?" she asks, worried. Carter begins to explain about Dressler and how he whiffed on the pen-and-paper request, but can't really squeeze out the whole story. "Nothing's right here," he finally says, turning to leave. Abby watches him go for a second. "Hey, I haven't seen you in a week! That's it?" she says, frustrated, all but stomping her foot. Carter shrugs, emotionless. "Luka called me," she blurts. "He was under the impression I might know where you were." Carter turns and their eyes meet, and Abby's face says it all. I wholeheartedly disagree with people who think she was playing the ex-boyfriend card; it seems clear to me that what she's saying here is that she knows of only one reason why Luka might be needing to reach Carter, and she's upset she had to hear it this way, rather than from Carter himself. Also, she's afraid to see him go. "You're going, right?" she finally asks. "To Africa?" Carter nods. "It's not Rio, but...it's not here," he says emptily, leaving. Abby stares after him, fighting being hurt, and eventually turns to walk inside, wringing her hands.

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