Nurse Jackie

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Jacob Clifton: A+ | Grade It Now!
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A Woman To Look After You

Jackie checks in on Steak Knife Zach, who is high on morphine and not making a hell of a lot of sense, which in TV is code for everything he says is the secret truth. Jackie mentions that Laurie's pacing a hole in the floor for him, and he whines, remembering that it was her husband that stabbed him. "Her ex-husband. And he's not the one you're dating." Because what Jackie needs right now is a little less triangulation in her relationships. To be neither steak knife nor stabbist; to use her friends and lovers less and to love them more.

Zach points out that there are dangerous people in the world, and Jackie says she hardly thinks Laurie is one. "By association, though," he says, indicting everyone who loves Jackie in one fell swoop, even as their cracks and the dangers they represent are looming ever larger. "...Anyway," she says, "She's worried sick." Zach yells about how he's not dating any more married people, no more people with problems. "I want someone with a clean slate. Like a grad student."

Jackie adjusts his drip to shut him up, until he chokes on truth and sleeps. She watches it pour out, falling in slow motion; he nearly passes out, in pure bliss. She thinks of Paula. Just for a moment, just for a split second until he starts talking again, she allows herself to think of Paula: That empty room, everything all packed up. If one pill feels good, and two feels great? They agree that Laurie's pretty, and so nice.

"Maybe this is a test," Jackie says. Somewhere God is screaming.

"Maybe if you can move on from here, everything else will be a piece of cake." Maybe we can move on from hurting each other and being hurt. Maybe we can forget the ironies and coincidences that bring us out of alignment with each other. At the tone, God says, you will stop feeling guilty because of somebody else's mistake, or someone else's rage, and look at the person in front of you. She pulls out the bracelet. "I found it on the subway, it looks brand new." She puts it in his hand, and he's touched. He won't remember it. She's sad to see it go; it's just another steak knife. He won't remember this. "Maybe everything happens for a reason, right?"

Laurie's covered in Cheeto dust when Jackie finds her; she cleans her off with a wipe and Laurie nearly weeps with gratitude before heading to his bedside; Eleanor passes her in the doorway. "Jacks?" She closes the door and smiles, nervously. Her face tries to do several things it's never done before. "Okay, here's the thing. Not an easy day. For either of us."

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Nurse Jackie

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