Now that the merger has been announced, everyone is going nuts at the idea they might lose their jobs. Cristina realizes that, since cardio has been a mess for a while now, she doesn't have an attending sticking up for her so she sucks up to Arizona so that she can try out pediatrics. The only problem with this is that Cristina hates children, so of course she sucks at it. After Arizona has to perform a crazy emergency surgery with Mark to sew the arm back on a newborn, she lets Cristina have it for using her and lying to her. At least Arizona gets off work and an awesome conversation with Callie in which they officially declare themselves to be girlfriend and girlfriend -- between that and saving the baby's arm it turned out to be a pretty good day after all.
Izzie, meanwhile, says that she's bored and wants to come back to work but really she doesn't want to sit at home when she could be fighting to prove she should keep her own job. She winds up on a hugely long surgery with Shepherd, which freaks Alex out because she totally neglects her own health to do so and he has to watch out for her to make sure she's taking her meds. Between that and his patients he doesn't really seem to be worrying too much about his job, and Meredith so far seems to be handling the stress okay as well. When the first round of cuts are made at the end of the day, all four of them are safe for now but Alex tells Izzie that she has to actually take care of herself as he can't do it all for her. I don't really believe she'll do it, but we'll see how it goes.
The patients of the week are a mother and her grown son who were in a car accident, and what makes things complicated is that the son is a paranoid schizophrenic. The mom has a pulsing mass in her stomach that she's never had looked at because she's too busy caring for him, but they take her in to have a look while Lexie bandages up the son's wrist. He winds up thinking Lexie's got it in for him, attacks her and runs off, but then things get even worse when security finally corners him and he falls down the stairs. It turns out his mom's aorta could burst at any second, but she refuses surgery because she can't leave her son alone, especially given what just happened. Lexie had been kicked off the case, but winds up coming up with an idea -- they do not crucial but not unnecessary surgery on his spleen, injured in the fall, and at the same time repair mom's aorta so that they will be together every step of the way and she can keep an eye on him. Bailey thinks it's genius, Lexie is back on the case after all, and while we don't actually see them come out of surgery, presumably it all works out.
Lexie has a heck of an ending to her day, however, when she finds out 3/4 of her class were let go in the first round of cuts. She and Stinky Two seem to be the only ones who are still there; even Nurse Olivia shows up long enough to be fired as well. Between Lexie melting down from the stress of it all, Cristina melting down and refusing to leave the hospital even to sleep and Meredith refusing to leave if Cristina's not leaving, the guys decide they need to do something to make them all relax and stop thinking about the merger for a little while. They wind up having beers and playing baseball until I'm sure the next morning when the mania will begin anew.
"Paranoia gives you an edge in the OR." And all of the flashing visuals of cars on the freeway and brain scans will give you a seizure, wow. It's nighttime, and while Arizona has a patient coming into the ER, Cristina is talking her ear off about how she realized pediatrics is the specialty where one can do it all: general, cardio, ortho, etc. Arizona looks confused at Cristina's interest but not confused enough to nip this in the bud. Cristina sweet-talks her to try and get on her service and Arizona warns her that she has to like kids. Cristina assures her that she loves kids, so Arizona agrees to see her at rounds. Oh Arizona, how could you have worked there longer than a day and not know that this is never going to end well? Cristina looks immensely pleased with herself.
In the exam room, Alex is looking at the patient that was just wheeled in, and enough of his cheek is gone that you can see all the way to his teeth. Another proud moment for the effects team that made me flinch. Hunt assesses the kid and says that he needs something, and the approximately ten hovering interns in the room all scream that they'll get it. Hunt's confused as it is 4 AM, but Cristina murmurs to him that it's the merger. Hunt thinks that the Chief didn't intend for no one to sleep but Cristina answers, "It's hard to sleep when your job's on the line." Wow, I have the bar set pretty low for this show these days, but it's still a way better show than that clichÃ©d line. Hunt calls for someone to get blood and meet him in surgery; Lexie yells the loudest and runs the fastest so she's the one to go get it.
Mere and Cristina are waiting for the elevator as the VO continues, "Surgeons play out worst-case scenarios in their heads." Cristina is living that statement, telling Mere that when she asked Callie about the Mercy West residents, she reported that they don't suck. She's already worked out that Mere will be safe because of Derek, Izzie because of the cancer, Alex because he's Bailey's current favorite and George, if he were still alive, because he was Owen's guy. As cardio has been such a mess, Cristina doesn't have anyone protecting her. So, as Mere points out, Arizona is her answer to this. Cristina agrees, because Arizona saves kids, and "No one likes a dead kid." She also figures that as they'll be under anesthesia half the time, it won't be any sort of big deal and asks the always jinxing question, "How bad can it be?" Mere looks like she has a good answer to that question as Cristina struts off proudly. VO: "You're ready to close, you've got the bleeder. You know it, but there's that one voice in your head asking...