Keith is surprised at what he sees when Rico opens the back door of the hearse: "There's no coffin?" Rico says Nate didn't want one. "More natural this way," George says, joining them in helping drag the canvas-shrouded corpse out of the vehicle. Rico asks where David is. "I think the three of us can handle this," Keith evades, grunting with effort as they awkwardly haul the body away and let the hearse door slam shut behind them. Good thing the old guy came along to help with the heavy lifting.
As the three pallbearers make their way to the plot, George and Rico are in the lead, while Keith carries the back end. I have no idea which end is the feet and which is the head. It just looks like a big, lumpy, off-white oblong area rug bag. Rico slips in the grass, but quickly recovers. Good thing it was the one who had the least distance to fall. If it had been George, Sars would still be waiting for me to send the recaplet. The women, walking ahead, reach the gravesite first. It's just a hole in the ground next to a tree. No marker, just like Nate wanted. I'm impressed that David was able to arrange this so quickly. The men (minus David) reach the open grave, where there's no bier or even a carpet to rest the body. Keith wonders where to put Nate down without getting the shroud dirty. It's going to be plenty dirty in a minute, Keith. "Dust to dust," George says more poetically as they ease Nate onto the grass. Ruth stands at one side of the grave, flanked by Sarah and Maggie. Brenda's standing alone across from them, and Claire's at the head. Or the foot. I don't know. There's no marker. Stupid Nate. Panting, Rico asks if Nate wanted a poem read. Ruth asks where David is. Keith says David's too upset. "Sometimes we can't be everywhere we want to be," he tries. Unimpressed, Ruth grumps, "Yes, well, sometimes we can," and starts walking back to where the cars are parked.
Where David appears to be just getting control over himself. He's crawled into the back seat of the Keithmobile, where he's slumped down low with one hand over his heart. He finally gathers the courage to look out the window again. Which of course is when his vision of Jimmy Felon flings itself hard against the glass, its red hood up and its eye sockets packed with cotton. Gah! David scrambles to the far side of the Keithmobile and goes fetal with panic as heavy blows rain down on the window. But then those blows fade to gentle taps as Ruth stands outside, patiently waiting for him to let her in. He unlocks the door for her. She says they're starting, and he says he can't do it. "If you don't get out of this car, you will hate yourself forever," she says without anger. David knows, but it doesn't change anything: "I'm so dizzy I can't breathe." Ruth realizes there's more going on here than garden-variety grief. But rather than demanding an explanation, she says, "Then we'll wait until you can." She gets into the car and sits next to him while they wait for his panic to subside.