Joan smiles at her improvement, saying, "Better, huh?" Her expression is glowing. She looks at Judith, who, having seen that her one true friend is getting better at catching what's coming at her, feels it's safe to go now. She says nothing, but her eyelids close in a couple of brief increments, and the machine she's hooked up to goes crazy. Joan looks at the flat line, and her face collapses: "Oh, my God! No! Judith, please! No, Judith, please!" She takes Judith's face in her hands and shakes her head. You can hear staff shouting in the background. Joan turns and shouts, "Oh, my God! Somebody! Please! Oh, God!" Medical people burst into the room and hustle Joan out. Helen and Fran rush over; Fran wants to know what's going on. They're all pushed gently outside by one of the many people attending to Judith. Fran and Helen watch through the glass in sad shock; Joan stands next to Fran, coming completely unglued. She's bouncing up and down, trying to contain her panic, crying and holding her hands over face. She wails, "Oh my God oh my God, please " It's just agonizing. Somewhere, Allison Janney is starting to get a little nervous.
----- Original Message -----
From: "Deborah Birkett" email@example.com
To: "'Sarah D. Bunting'" firstname.lastname@example.org
Sent: Tuesday, November 16, 2004 7:16 AM
Subject: Joan of Arcadia
I would like to put in for a Kleenex stipend. Please advise. The sooner, the better. I'm going broke, yo.
Joan and her mother drive up to a gas station. Joan seems to be in shock. She's absently twirling a flower in her hand. I think it's the one from her hair, because it's pink. As Helen fishes out her wallet, Joan says, "She was gonna come over tomorrow morning. We were gonna work on our project. She -- she was going to " Joan can't continue. Helen strokes her head as Joan wells up. Joan asks, "What are we doing here?" Helen: "I need gas. And I don't want us stuck by the side of the road after all this." Joan turns to watch Helen go, so dazed she almost seems drugged. She notices Doctor God pumping gas a few feet away. She gets out of the car and walks over to him, breathless with grief and her eyes filled with tears: "How could you just do that? She's gone. How can you just fill up your stupid car?" Doctor God: "I was empty." A happy-looking couple walks out of the store at the gas station and walks past them, laughing and enjoying life. Joan shouts, "Shut up!" The couple is stunned but just moves along. Helen comes out from behind the pump and says, "Joan?" Joan goes back to berating Doctor God as Helen walks over: "You just can't go on like this! She's gone. You let her die!" Helen looks at him apologetically; Doctor God says quietly, "It's all right." Michael Chinyamurindi is a great choice for this part. He has the look of someone you could shout at for hours and he would simply gaze back at you, sympathetic but unperturbed. He rocks that majestic dignity thing. Helen gently steers Joan away to the car. Joan mouth works a bit as if she wants to say more, but nothing comes out. Helen gets Joan into the car. Doctor God looks in Joan's direction with great concern as he finishes pumping his gas.