It’s a couple minutes later. Marigold is back. She’s been kneeling next to you, but once she sees you’re starting to stand back up again, she rushes over to Process to talk.

“Holy shit, we have to get them to a real doctor,” she says urgently to him. She thinks you don’t hear her. But you do.

“I know,” he hisses back. “But I don’t even remember where the phones are! Where the hell is anyone?!”

“That’s your job! Do your goddamn job!”

You’ve been hearing everything they’ve been saying to each other when they think you’re not listening. You know how much she hates him. You think you have to smile and put up with it. But you don’t. Just say something.

I don’t want to say anything. I want to stay here and slide down into the center of the earth.

Please say something.

“He is a real doctor,” your voice says, because the both of us feel weirdly defensive about this. It forms a Y-shaped barrier between you and him and her.

“I don’t know,” Process says in his pathetic apologetic ‘I got challenged by someone I have mild respect for and I’m now going to collapse like a wet paper towel’ tone, and something surges through you, anger in the palms of your hands, but you hold it in your fists. I wish you would do something.

All of this is reminding you of when your parents would fight. And now you’re feeling bad and sick, because these aren’t your parents, it’s your girlfriend and your friend that you accidentally used as a caretaker-girlfriend-mommy-issues, and Jesus you are fucked up. You wonder if you treat Process that way too. I’m confident that you don’t, but you’re obsessing over it already.