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Ether Recap

At the Coleman General Hospital, Dr. Hal Forrester operates on a patient. The oxygen pressure to the patient drops and he wakes up and then dies from shock.

Later, Hal wakes up from his nightmare of the patient dying when his alarm goes off. He leaves his office and a nurse notices that he looks haggard. Hal says that he needs sleep and after the nurse goes, Hal leaves.

Later, Hal goes to an old carousel ride that is closed. The carousel starts up and then stops after a few rotations. Ray is one of the carriages and addresses Hal by name, and asks how much trouble he's in. They go out for a walk and Hal explains that he has people dying in his OR at double the average. When Hal checked up one of the patients, Arnold Sousa, he couldn't find Sousa's chart. He checked the computer records and found no record of Sousa. Hal figures that something is going on and asks for Ray's help, and Ray says that he can't start until the next day. The doctor accepts that, and Ray explains about his favor repayment. He tells Hal to set him up as a visiting doctor and leaves.

The next day, Dr. Cornell and her team, including chief surgeon Dr. John Whitaker, bring a hit-and-run homeless woman named Cheryl McDonald into the OR. John tells Cornell to show him the results of their testing and they take the patient into OR.

Ray speedreads information on medicine at the library.

John goes into the OR and attaches a remote underneath the table, and puts a contaminant in the oxygen line.

Ray puts on a suit for his new role.

The patient goes into surgery, and John triggers the hidden remote sending the contaminant into the patient's oxygen line.

Ray parks in the visiting doctor's spot.

The patient dies on the operating table.

Ray arrives in Hal's office and Hal takes him to a staff meeting. He introduces Ray under his assumed name, and afterward introduces Ray to John, who asks if Cornell is available. Once John leaves and they're alone, Hal tells Ray that they lost a homeless woman due to surgical complications. She died in OR5, and Ray goes there to check it out. John is hiding in the shadows, and Ray looks over the gas lines. Cornell comes in and asks Ray who he is, and he deflects her questions and suggests that they have an Italian dinner. Cornell leaves, inviting Ray to leave with her. Once he leaves, John recovers the remote from underneath the table.

At the Coleman Institute for Research, John gives Daniel Coleman an injection. He tells Daniel that it's keeping him alone but can't tell if there's any reversal. John tells him to take it easier, and Daniel asks about Ray. He figures that Hal is up to something, well aware that he's been looking into the deaths. John assures him that Hal won't be a problem, but Daniel demands to know for sure if Ray is on their team… and for John to kill him if he isn't.

Ray and Cornell have dinner at her apartment, and she suggests that they go somewhere and run away. She kisses Ray, and Ray talks about the patient who died that morning. He wonders if Cornell is burying her grief by romancing him, and says that it was a routine exploratory and the patient didn't have anyone. Most of the hospitals won't take the homeless, and they don't leave much behind. Cornell suspects Ray isn't a surgeon and passes on him staying the night, and Ray takes her hand.

The next day, Ray visits Dr. Alex Freeman at a racquetball court where Alex is playing. Alex sees Ray and calls the game. He's soon playing Ray and saying that he's been waiting five years for Ray to show up and collect his favor. Alex readily offers to do whatever he can for Ray.

Later, Ray prepares to go into surgery to watch. A nurse describes the patient and the procedure, and John found a spot in the man's left lung. In the OR, John opens up the patient as Hal watches from the gallery. John then invites Ray to do the honors. When the masked Ray hesitates, Hal looks on nervously. After a moment, Ray takes the scalpel and goes to work. Once he finishes, he tells John to close the patient up and leaves. Hal confronts him, and Ray steps out and reveals that "Ray" was Alex filling in for him. Alex admits that he dropped out and quit his practice ten years ago when he had some problems. Ray figures that John wanted to test "his" skills, and thanks Alex for his help.

Once Alex leaves, Hal says that he doesn't understand why John would be involved in anything shady. Cornell is in the hallway and congratulates Ray, and once she leaves Ray notices that the hospital brings in blood from outside. The blood is slated for specific patients, and Ray confirms Sousa's name.

Later, Ray goes to the national blood bank and hacks into the phone system through the basement box. He accesses the database and then goes back to the hospital. Cornell finds him going through files and asks who he is, and Ray notes that a number of patients all came into the hospital for relatively simple procedures and there's no trace of them in the hospital computers. They were typed by the national blood bank so they had to be admitted. John has a second degree in research and several other doctors are also researchers. One was discharged from a hospital for questionable procedures and ran the hospital's research department. Cornell asks Ray who else he can trust.

Alex arranges a meeting with John at a restaurant and says that Ray isn't who John thinks he is. He says that Ray was discharged because of unorthodox techniques, removing parts from terminal patients before they died. Alex tells John that he's doing it for peace of mind, and Ray was tied up in the problems he had a few years ago.

At the hospital, Cornell has Ray look in on one of her patients. She gives him a fake story to test his lack of medical knowledge, and then gives Ray a copy of the doctors' schedules. The doctors involved with the missing patients have cushy schedules, and Cornell says that the rest of them are working two shifts. John comes in and Ray gives him a complete diagnosis on Cornell's patient. Once Cornell leaves, John tells Ray what he's learned about him. Ray insists that he's not an administrator and no one got hurt by what he did. John says that there's someone Ray ought to meet and explains that the someone has a lot of money directed to medical research. The chief surgeon says that Ray can make extra money and do his work without anyone breathing down his neck. Ray agrees to meet the man under a bridge that night.

That night, Ray drives to the bridge and finds Daniel waiting for him in an expensive car. John takes Ray to Daniel, who tells Ray that if he works for him then he'll have all the time and money he wants. Daniel explains that he owns the hospital and insists that Ray take a polygraph test. John gets in the car with Daniel and they drive off. Ray uses a device attached to his Stingray to switch the pattern of headlights, and follows Daniel's car. Swapping the headlights, Ray makes the driver of the other car avoid noticing one car following them.

The car arrives at the institute and Ray slip sin through the gate. Inside are unconscious "patients" on life support, and Ray hides as a guard comes in. Once he leaves, Ray steps out and sets off an electric eye beam, triggering an alarm. Daniel checks at the guard station and sees Ray on the monitors, fleeing the institute. When Ray gets to the fence, he confirms that it's electrified and tosses a brick over on the other side. The guards hear it and assume Ray has escaped, and they open the gates to go out. Ray casually walks out.

Cornell is at home sleeping when her phone rings. It's Ray, who asks her to see if Daniel has a chart or record at the hospital, and then meet him at Billy's coffee shop. Cornell goes to the hospital and checks the records, and discovers that John is Daniel's attending physician. The records show that Daniel has pulmonary carcinoma, and John draws a gun on her as she gets into her car.

A short time later, Ray gets a call telling him to come to the institute. The guards let him in and he's taken to the ward where John and Daniel are waiting with the unconscious Cornell. Ray figures that Daniel is using his money to buy researchers to come up with a cure for his condition. Daniel tells him that John and his team have been extracting cancer-fighting antibodies from plasma but they didn't have enough volunteers so they recruited some. As they talk, Ray secretly removes an IT from one patient's arm. Ray has figure out that John is faking the patients' deaths and then bringing them to the institute to provide plasma.

In Daniel's office, Daniel shows Ray the vials of antibodies that they've collected. John explains that they don't get much from each patient, and Ray says the antibody research is too early to do Daniel any good. Daniel insists that the homeless are nobody, but Ray isn't impressed. He knocks over John and the guard and runs out as the alarms go off, and when Daniel goes to the guard station, Ray ducks into his office. Daniel soon spots him on the monitors, and when Daniel and the guards go there, Ray readily puts up his hands. He grabs the rack of vials and holds them over his hands, and Daniel tells the guards not to shoot.

Ray tells to put the guns down, and destroys two of the vials. Daniel tells his men to drop their guns, and Ray tells him to get the guards outside the building. As they go to get Cornell, John jumps Ray from hiding. They struggle and Ray drops the vials, which smash on the floor. Furious, Daniel shoots John dead and Ray disarms Daniel. Cornell wakes up and Ray gets her to the door. He sets a rack of chemicals on fire to cover their escape, and they get into Ray's car and burst through the gate.

Later, Hal and Cornell are checking on Cheryl. Out in the hallway, Hal tells Cornell that the others will be fine as well. He explains that they found the switches and cable that John was using in OR5. Hal says that he hasn't heard anything about Ray, and gives Cornell the phone number he used to contact Ray. Cornell calls the number and the woman at the other end says that it's the German Embassy and they've never heard of Ray.

Ray drives off into the night.

Written by Gadfly on Dec 7, 2019

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