EXT. PARKING KIOSK AT THE ENTRANCE OF A PARKING STRUCTURE
A car pulls up to the kiosk. The window goes down. From the driver’s point of view, an attendant slides open a window on the kiosk and leans out.
Good morning. It’ll be five dollars.
Will you be coming back tomorrow?
Tomorrow no? Friday, yes.
Sorry, if you were coming back tomorrow, it’d be 8 dollars for the two days.
Have a blessed day.
INT. PARKING LOT STAIRWELL
INT. EXAM ROOM
Matt sits and looks at his phone. On the chair next to him is his hat and sweatshirt. He’s already weighed in and had blood pressure taken. There’s a gentle knock on the door. The doctor walks in, holding an open laptop in his hand. He has a serious look on his face.
Why the glum look doctor?
Have you seen your lab results yet?
Um, nope. Usually I do, but not this month.
Dr Phan sits down across from Matt. He places his lap top on a small rolling table. He rolls the table so Matt can see.
Ok, well look. A couple of things have changed.
Uh oh. Really?
Yeah, see you creatinine? It’s gone up. And your m spike has gone up. How are you feeling?
Well, I’ve been more tired than usual. And the other day on a walk up the hills of Signal Hill, I had difficulty getting deep breaths. Kind of like when I first diagnosed.
When did you do your IVIG? There’s no literature to support this, but my theory is the IVIG can impact the efficacy of darzalex.
(IVIG is an infusion of immunoglobulins to help boost a patient’s immune system.)
Well, I did only half the IVIG dosage last week, since there is a shortage. Seems like no one wants to donate anymore. But, you know, I did labs before I did the IVIG.
Well, we may want to start thinking about changing things up.
Yeah, I’ve been on darzalex for over two and a half years. Longest I’ve been on any drug.
That’s a while.
Definitely I’ve been on cruise control.
Well let’s do this. Don’t do another IVIG. Do your darzalex this Friday, then we’ll check your labs and see what’s up.
What else is going on?
I took a ceramics class. Here let me show you.
Matt grabs his phone and searches for photos of his ceramics projects. He hands the phone to Dr Phan.
Nice. I wish I had time for something creative. What about the guitar?
It’s on my list.
All right, well keep me posted. I’ll see you next month.
EXT. MARINE MAMMAL RESCUE - LATER THE SAME DAY
Matt is dressed in large waterproof overalls and knee high boots. He walks out of a pen, carrying an empty container. Inside the pen are sea lions, eating fish. Matt walks in to the break room.
INT. BREAK ROOM
Matt goes to locker and grabs his phone. He walks to a chair and sits and dials.
Hi, this is Matt, I’m wondering if I can get in to see Dr Berenson this week.
Sorry he’s busy all week.
He doesn’t have anything for a quick visit?
Afraid not. Plus he is leaving early Wednesday and Thursday, so he is jam packed.
Argh. Ok thanks.
Matt hangs up. He dials another number.
Hi. What’s up.
Can you do me a favor?
Call Susan at Berenson’s office and see if she can squeeze me in this week. I haven’t see him in a while and I think I should.
Yeah, let me check.
Plus. If he has anything, also see if we can get in to the kidney doctor the same day.
Will do. I’ll let you know.
EXT. PARKING LOT OUTSIDE MARINE MAMMAL RESCUE - EVENING
Matt is walking to his car. He makes a call as he walks.
Hello. I’m done.
Cool. Long day.
Yep, lots of animals here right now.
I talked to Susan and she was able to fit you in at noon tomorrow. And Dr Froch also had an opening tomorrow.
INT. EXAM ROOM - THE NEXT DAY
Good morning, good morning. How are we doing?
Pretty good, pretty good.
Hey, I like your shoes.
Ah thanks. Converse.
So what’s going on? Your labs all look good.
Um, really? Dr Phan thought he saw some changes.
Hmm. I don’t see it. How are you feeling?
A little more tired lately.
A lot more tired lately. He’s taking daily naps.
That’s true. And it takes a while to wake up from the naps.
Well, everything looks fine.
Even my creatinine and m spike?
Yeah, they’re up a bit, but I don’t think it’s anything to worry about.
Dr Berenson turns to the young scribe.
You should have seen this guy when he first came in. How long ago was it?
He was in horrible shape. We had to really get creative to save his life.
Listen, you’re doing great. Let’s not change a thing.
EXT. TREE LINED STREET - DAY
Matt and Leslie are walking down a steep hill to where the car is parked.
Well, that’s confusing. Talk about two different messages.
Sure is. I guess you just do your treatment and we’ll see what labs look like next month.
I guess so. Sheesh, that’s the thing with this fucking disease. It’s such a mind game.
They arrive at Matt’s car. Screen fades to black. A message is displayed: To be continued.