Leave a Light On (2020)
A month ago, you were in med school being taught by doctors.
Today you are the doctors.
The seven years you spend here as a surgical resident will be the best and worst of your life.
There's an old joke doctors like to tell.
"Hey, Doc, it hurts when I go like this."
And the doctor says, "Well, don't go like this."
It's a lame joke, but it's nonetheless true.
Okay, folks. Meeting time.
Please take your seats.
As human beings, we can't help but want to follow our instincts...
I, uh, went back to the loft and got you another bag of your stuff.
Oh. Couldn't find those ugly, fuzzy socks you like.
...to follow our guts...
That face is over socks?
...our primal urges...
Uh, some bills, some junk, and, uh, top letter.
...no matter how much it may hurt.
I'll sit with you. We can read it together.
I got it.
I got it.
You know where to find me.
Mer, this is not the way I wanted to do this.
Dear Dr. Bailey, I regret to inform you, blah, blah, blah, that I will not be returning to Grey-Sloan.
The last thing on Earth I want to do is hurt you, but I'm leaving.
I already left, actually.
This is not the way I wanted to do this, but you know me.
Any chance to take the easy way out.
Or maybe that used to be true. I don't know.
God, I hate nurses.
I'm Alex. I'm with Jeremy.
You're, uh... You're with the Nazi, right?
She may not have pneumonia, you know?
She could be splinting, or have a P.E.
Like I said, I hate nurses.
What did you just say?
Did you just call me a nurse?
Well, if the white cap fits.
What I do know is I owe you the truth, and I don't know how else to tell you.
But you know as well as I do if I showed up on your doorstep, you'd yell or give me guilt or crap or whatever you do that seems to always set me straight.
We can't run.
We have to face up to the stupid things we do.
Alex! Get off!
Supposedly, if you face up to them, something good comes out of it. I don't know what.
You were always the one to set me straight...
God, I smell good!
You know what it is?
It's the smell of open-heart surgery.
It's awesome. It is awesome.
You gotta smell me. I don't want to smell you.
...to point out when I was being an ass.
You have got to be kidding me!
Okay, I have more important things to deal with than you.
I have roommates and boy problems and family problems.
You wanna act like a little frat-boy bitch? That's fine.
You wanna take credit for your saves and everybody else's?
That's fine, too. Just stay outta my face.
And for the record, you smell like crap!
And when that didn't work, you'd flop in my bed and say the one perfect thing that would make sense.
But the thing is, I can't come back.
I can't face you.
You can go.
What are you gonna do if I leave?
It's just us now.
There were five of us, and now it's just you and I.
And it can't be just me.
It seems like five seconds ago, we were the interns hiding in the tunnels.
Alex! Get off.
Look, I'm not gonna stay in Seattle just because you don't want to be alone.
I deserve the guilt and to be called an ass, but I don't want to be set straight.
I don't want you to say the right thing because the one perfect thing isn't in Seattle.
Yang left me her shares and her board seat and... she left me you, too.
It's just us now.
I don't know... if you need somebody to bitch to or just be...
I don't know what you mean.
But you do.
Apparently, I'm your emergency contact.
I want waffle Sundays.
Like a family, all of us... everybody, all together.
I want to do that as long as we can.
It's important to me. God, get off! Stop it!
Oh, my God. Ohh.
But I swear, it's not about work or you or Jo.
It's about me.
And I'm with Izzie.
This is probably the part where you're gonna get on your phone and call a million times and leave hateful messages on my machine till I call you back.
But I can't, Mer.
I can't lie to you, and I can't promise I'm gonna come home because it's not home anymore.
Go make her happy. Yeah.
When you were in danger of losing your license, when I called everyone to write letters and show up on your behalf, I called Izzie, too.
I want to say I hoped she wouldn't answer, but the truth is I hoped she would.
I want to say, "I had to call her for you," but that would be a lie.
The truth is your trial gave me an excuse good enough to call her.
'Cause I wanted to know where she landed.
Today is the day my life begins.
All my life, I've been just me... just a smart-mouth kid.
Today I become a man.
Today I become a husband.
Today I become accountable to someone other than myself.
Today I become accountable to you, to our future, to all the possibilities that our marriage has to offer.
Together, no matter what happens, I'll be ready...
I wanted to know if she was alive and well.
Screw the DNR.
Hand me those paddles.
Clear. I wanted to hear her voice.
I'm a bride.
Iz, come on. I'm getting her a real one.
I love this one, and that makes it a real one.
When she picked up, I blurted out the whole thing about you picking up trash off the street and needing a letter that proved you're better than that.
And she laughed and said, "Of course she'd be trash-picking, trying to save the world."
Today, Izzie Stevens, our life together begins.
And I, for one, can't wait.
And then these voices were in the background and a girl was singing this song about
"greasy, grimy gopher guts" that I learned in first grade and I started laughing and I asked if she had kids and...
Izzie got quiet.
For so long, she was quiet, and finally, she said, "Yeah, I have kids."
And it turns out they're my kids, Mer.
Izzie's and my kids.
She had our kids.
♪ Before we turn to stone
I love Jo.
I think I always will.
And if it was just about two women I love, I'd choose my wife.
You know I would.
Hey. But it's not just her.
Izzie made our kids.
I snooched into a cup for you today.
Um... thank you?
She was single and wanted children and couldn't have 'em because the cancer nuked her eggs.
But she had our embryos.
Back then I was too freaked out to care about what she did with them if we never used them.
You think a Dixie cup full of my swimmers will make everything okay?
It's crap. This is crap.
You just can't go messing with people's heads like that.
Even if she freezes the embryos, you think... you think we'll get a chance to use them?
You think she'll still be here?
You think she'll survive all this?
Do you think...
She t-told me... she told me she was seeing a ghost, okay?
And I'm so used to all the crazy chicks in my life that I didn't even...
I'm a doctor.
And I didn't even think to...
And now she's... This is...
This is wrong.
This isn't how it's supposed to happen.
It's crap. I know.
I hate this.
This isn't how we... How we were supp... this isn't how I wanted to do this.
This isn't how Izzie and I were supposed to make a baby.
So I signed papers saying she could do whatever she wanted with them.
And so she used them.
And she had twins.
Eli and Alexis.
I should have told Jo or told you, but I didn't.
I got through the trial and then I came here and I met the kids.
Met, my kids, Mer.
And hilarious and stubborn as hell, just like Izzie.
Like this little team that gangs up on me with stubbornness and sticky hands.
And the second I walked in the door, they wanted to show me their rooms and the look on their faces when they were showing me all their toys and books and... asked if they could call me...
They both want to be doctors, and Izzie teaches them to bake just like her.
And they scribble pictures of stethoscopes all over the walls in chalk.
...oh, she's got Izzie's eyes.
And Eli smiles crooked just like I do.
And now I live on a freaking farm in Nowhere, Kansas.
And the kids play with the chickens and Izzie goes to work as a surgical oncologist.
Oh, and she's amazing, Mer.
The progress she's made.
And she's a miracle and keeping other people alive.
And I'm applying to the hospital nearby.
And I wanted to be mad at Izzie for keeping them from me, but I can't because all I am is grateful she made them.
Oh, they're so damn smart, smarter than I was at their age.
Hell, sometimes at my age.
And they get to have everything... a home where they feel safe and loved, and they play "sleepover," where they just keep swapping beds non-stop, all night until they land in ours at 4:00 a.m.
And they wake up with two parents, when I rarely ever even had one.
Oh, I love them, Mer, with every inch of me and every cell, and I get to be their dad.
I'm the guy who lied and said I only had one ball to get into Seattle Grace.
And it worked.
I got a job and a career I love based on a lie that no one really cared about, and I made it work.
And when I look at my kids and doubt if I know how to do right by them, I just think of you and Zola and Bailey and Ellis.
You're so brave.
And you've grown into this incredible mother, this incredible surgeon.
You did that.
You always said Cristina was your person.
Then I was your person.
But you've always been your own damn person, a force of freaking nature.
You've never needed anyone but you.
And you can come here, you know?
You... You... You could show up at my door and... and get me to walk away from all this and just go back to you and Jo and the hospital and everyone who helped me get here. ...two... one!
But I hope you don't.
Mer, you are my best friend, and I will miss the hell out of you, but I'm finally exactly where I should be.
I never had that before.
So, I hope you do come here one day, but not to ask me to leave.
I hope you come to meet my kids and they get to call you "Auntie Mer."
Because you'll love them, and they'll love you.
And until you're ready to do that, try not to hate me too much.
You deserve more than a letter.
I'm your intern for the day.
Oh. Well, hello, intern. You have a name?
Oh, nice. I like chicks with boys names.
And this right here, this cowardice, this letter?
It's officially the worst thing I've ever done.
But it's about me, Jo.
It's not about you.
I don't live in my car anymore, jerk.
It's not what you deserve.
You deserve and have earned so much better than this.
Hey, powdered sugar's your favorite.
Yeah, no. Uh, this is great.
You wanted to hear me say the words.
So I'm... saying them right now.
I love you, Jo.
I love that you are brilliant and brave, and no matter what you go through...
Oh, wait. It's... It's "Jo" now, right?
...you never let it hold you back.
Do I look like him? You have my father's eyes...
You have an out.
It makes you stronger, kinder.
You made me kinder.
That works? The compliments thing?
God, you're sexy.
Doesn't work on me.
Oh. A little warning when people are over would be nice.
You loved me for exactly who I was, and I loved you.
I'm gonna marry that girl.
I love you.
Maybe it's not fair to say that, but it's true.
What's also true is...
...I'm in love with Izzie.
When I asked you if you wanted to move in with me, you said that you did and that you could picture a life with me, but you never said anything about babies.
You said, "Maybe we could get a dog."
Do you want a dog?
No, I want to know what we're doing here.
I love you, and you love me.
I know, but when I look ahead...
Why are we looking ahead?
If you had or maybe you do have, for all I know, a bunch of Izzie babies walking around with your face on them...
And why are we doing it now?
And... And I'm just the "Let's get a dog" girl?
You always ask about Izzie, what she was like.
Well, that... that girl right there.
That... That's what Izzie was like.
I imagined this whole life for her where she was baking and happy and had a bunch of kids.
Alex, if you want to know how she is, you should just call her.
And I never imagined me in that picture.
You should call Izzie.
But suddenly, I am.
Not suddenly. That's a lie there.
There was a part of me that always wondered, always wanted to know, always felt like we left things unresolved, unfinished.
So, when Mer needed all those letters, I reached out to her.
I reached out to Izzie and we started talking and it scared the crap out of me because it felt like no time had passed, like Izzie and I were kind of frozen together in time, and now... now we're not.
She's not. She's here in Kansas, on a farm in this incredible place in the middle of nowhere.
And I never, in a million years, would think I belong here, but I do.
And I can't lie to you...
...and pretend the truth isn't the truth... that I love you and I love Izzie.
But if it was just me missing her or nostalgia or whatever...
Will you stay with me?
...I would have been able to walk away and come back to you.
But Izzie had my kids.
And I know you get what that really means.
I know you of all people understand why I can't just leave now...
...why I can't miss another second of my kids' lives.
I have a chance to make this family whole, and I just hope you love me back enough to let me take it.
I need to give these kids the family you and I never had, with barbecuing out on the back porch and soccer games and movie nights and book reports.
I didn't know she would have my kids, and now that she does, I don't know how to look anyone in the eye if I don't stay and do everything I can to make this work... make this a life, make this a family.
You were wrong.
You're not the "Let's get a dog" girl.
And I was never holding a candle or those pieces of paper thinking anything would ever change.
When I asked you to marry me, I meant it.
And we'll be together forever, right? You and me.
And if we have kids, we'll be great.
I'll be a great dad, and you'll be great, and it'll be just us.
We won't need anybody else, okay?
When I told you I love you, I meant it.
But Izzie has our kids, Jo.
And the way you and I grew up, I...
I-I came to meet them, to start to know them.
I missed five years of their lives.
And not because I was a junkie like my dad or off my meds like my mom.
I didn't exist to them until I walked through the front door.
And once I did, I had this family I never knew I had on this insane farm, and I wish I'd I wish getting everything I always wanted didn't have to hurt you in the process.
But I can't lie to you.
And I can't come home.
Are you asking me to a dance?
No, I'm... I'm asking you to come back home.
I'm not coming home, Jo.
I can't face you.
I can't look you in the eye because I wouldn't be able to walk away.
Maybe "I love you" is wrong to say, but thank you for making me better and taking care of me when I needed it, for taking care of yourself when you needed it, too.
I went to a lawyer.
I signed divorce papers.
I left everything to you. It's yours.
You worked for every cent you ever owned and then some.
I also left you my shares in Grey-Sloan.
Whatever you choose to do with them, I know it will be amazing.
Just like you.
You know, I, uh...
I barely saw you this week, and it sucked.
I'll find another job. Whatever.
I, uh, but I don't want to never see you again.
Oh, you deserve everything good in this life, Jo.
I hope you find so much better than me.
I'm... I'm sorry.
I don't know how to end this.
I don't want to.
I'm guessing you're not surprised by this, and definitely not happy about it.
They called me Evil Spawn most of the time growing up in your hospital.
Nice panties, Yang.
In your dreams, Evil Spawn.
It's probably one of the better nicknames I had most of my life, to be honest.
I earned the name.
I know it, you know it.
Hell, you probably know that better than anyone.
Truth is, you didn't like me very much in the beginning.
I didn't really like you much, either.
Sloppy, sloppy, sloppy.
Redo these and return them to me before lunch, understood?
Understood. Karev, don't tempt me.
And, Karev, see the chief by the end of the day.
Do I look psychic to you? He's the chief.
He asked, you go.
Karev, go stand in the hall.
Karev, cover the pit. Pit!
Hate being an intern.
You were mean and impatient... and knew everything, and you liked everyone else but me, even when you pretended you didn't.
Are you sure they're balloons?
You have reason to believe they're not balloons?
This one here's got a face.
They all do.
I'll be damned.
They're Judys. Judys?
He swallowed the heads of ten Judy dolls.
Or you were convinced I had "it"... that something that would make them great someday.
Hell, you named your kid after O'Malley.
And Mer named her kid after you, and you...
...you just seemed like all my other teachers before you who took one look at me, decided I was garbage, and that was all I'd ever be.
But here's the thing.
Unlike everyone else, you let me grow the hell up.
He saved a baby's life. You gave me crap when I deserved it.
You pushed my buttons and my limits when I needed it.
What the hell? You are not some hotshot surgeon right now.
Yeah, it's a teaching hospital and all that, but you did more than that, and you know it.
Why is there a trailer in my parking spot?
Is one of these yours? My bad.
And, sure, it'd be pretty great if I just stayed there forever and repaid you for everything you did for me.
But you and I both know I can't.
You helped me grow the hell up, and you took a bullet out of my stomach.
You paged me?
I did. I have a surgery.
You're actually gonna let me near a patient?
You are the patient.
Get in there and get on that table. Oh...
I don't need a reminder of this thing.
I'm gonna carry that day around with me every day for the rest of my life.
I don't need a reminder every time I look at you.
And I'm tired of bullying you, so I am asking you, please, get in there and get your shirt off.
You protected Jo from herself, and if I started the whole list of everything I learned from you, I would never stop writing.
And right now my hand hurts.
So just know this.
It took me a long time to say it, but I'm a good peds surgeon.
I'm an okay guy.
I'm still trying.
But I'm a really damn good surgeon.
We got movement! And I don't mind saying it now because I didn't figure it out myself.
You kicked my ass and asked more of me than anyone and hired other teachers who kicked my ass and asked more of me.
Karev, I hear that you're the future of peds.
Excuse me? Yeah, a little birdie named Bailey whispered it in my ear.
I want you to work with me today so I can see if she's right.
What did she say?
That you're the best babysitter in the hospital.
And I know who I am.
I'm not that guy with a million Catherine Fox Awards on a shelf.
A junkie dad, a crackpot mom, and somehow Karev still became a doctor.
I'm not easily impressed, but I'm impressed.
I became the guy you trusted to run the hospital and keep your secrets.
And now... It's okay.
...and now I'm a surgeon, a friend, a father of two incredible kids with Izzie Stevens, which I'm sure is breaking your brain.
But it's true. Nothing!
I'm all these things.
She been out there all day?
And by the way, I have a shot at being Chief of Peds at Shawnee County here, but I'm guessing you're the last person I should put down as a rec right now.
Okay, look, the... the kids keep asking for pizza sushi, and I have to go tell them that's not a thing.
And if I say any more in this letter, there are going to be feelings all over the place.
Yours, not mine.
And, really, I'm just writing to say goodbye.
And that sounds lame and small compared to everything you've done, but there it is.
Goodbye, and thanks.
I love you, Dr. Bailey.
Dr. Alex Karev.
Richard, alcoholic. Hi, Richard.
See one, do one, teach one.
That's been the motto of every hospital I run, every teacher I've loved.
I loved being a surgeon, saving lives, giving people back their families, their loved ones, and their friends.
Giving them back to them when all seemed lost.
And I loved my students, not because of ego...
I'm done. I'm done! I'm done!
...but because it gave me that same rush, that same feeling...
That's why I'm the chief.
It's like you're helping to keep people alive, keep families alive.
And then this morning, I wake up to a letter from a student of mine, who, well, let's just say he's not the one I would have put money down on.
What happens, uh, if I... if I take the exam for a second time and I don't pass?
You will no longer be a surgical resident at Seattle Grace.
Failing again is not an option.
What's the big deal? Well, the big deal is you're... you're sweaty and you and you smell.
And you're not going into my OR.
What the hell's the matter with you today?
This is a teaching hospital, okay?
You were the chief for 20 years.
You're supposed to be teaching your residents.
Oh, I think I taught you something today.
You don't give up a once-in-a-lifetime surgery, not for any reason, not for anyone, not ever.
But he... he did the work.
Yeah. He... He showed up.
He... He stepped up.
Became an excellent student, a stellar surgeon. 10 blade.
You're an underdog, aren't you, Karev?
It's not that you don't have the skills.
You have the skills.
But you're scrappy. You're a fighter.
I like that.
I always root for the underdog.
A fine teacher.
He was working with the best of the best.
But instead, he chose to abandon it all for who he says is the woman he loves.
And for the two children they now have.
You know, I wanted to look him straight in the eye and yell at him and... and tell him that he's made a mistake, that it feels like a mistake.
I've been there before, yeah.
I've fallen in love with two people at the same time, and...
And I know all you can do is go with what your... your bones and your guts and your heart tell you to.
I wanted to grab him and shake him and tell him, "Don't give it all away.
Not now. Not for... for this."
But I missed my chance to watch my own child grow into an adult.
And I would give anything to have those years with Maggie.
I'd do anything.
I guess, um...
I just wanted to say goodbye.
I just wanted to say goodbye.
Hey, Dr. Webber.
I-I didn't want to work here, either.
You know, at Grey-Sloan, I inherited a-a legacy.
Bailey's legacy, your legacy.
You know, I mean, every choice I made, I heard your voice in my head... "Don't settle. Do better."
At Grey-Sloan, failing was our last option.
But here, failure's the culture.
But we can change that.
Help me turn this place around.
Help me do the impossible.
I wanted to say thank you for helping me to be a better doctor, better teacher.
I mean, anything.
But he up and left...
Karev! Do better!
...with only a note and an apology, and that's it, not considering that I might want to say goodbye as a teacher...
Watch your back, Karev.
I may decide to teach you something tomorrow.
...as a colleague...
Time of death... 15:42.
...as a friend.
I've seen people leave.
I've done the leaving.
Richard! Richard! Richard!
I was gonna ask you to be by my side for the rest of our lives.
I'm not sorry about a damn thing.
And lately, it seems like all the people I love just...
...they just disappear.
I can't... find a way to make it stop.
Alex, if you want to know how she is, you should just call her.
You should call Izzie.
No, it's okay.
I mean, I-I-I don't need to call her.
I know how she is.
I mean, she's, uh... she's married with three kids, and she lives somewhere, I think, uh, kind of woodsy?
And she's a surgeon and she goes to work every day, so she refuses to hire help, so her house is always a mess.
And it has Christmas decorations all over it because she won't let her husband take them down.
It smells like muffins, and she's... she's smiling.
When I picture her, she's always smiling.
I don't need to call her because I want it to stay that way.
I picture her as happy as I am with you.
You imagined a whole life for her?
Oh, yeah. It's way better than wondering.
Hi, Izzie Stevens. Washington.
Hi, Alex Karev. Iowa.
What program are you in?
Morning, Dr. Model.
Dr. Evil Spawn.
Ooh. Nice tat.
Do you ever wake up in the morning and realize nobody likes you and, I don't know, care?
I think somebody likes me.
What is she doing?
She's hanging out with Alex.
There's a discussion we could have if you wanted to have one.
I kissed you with tongue...
...and I plan to do it again and again.
Get used to it.
I care about you.
And I'm not gonna stop caring about you, no matter how hard you push me away.
Shut up and get out of my room.
I care about you.
And I know you care about me, too.
It is not too late for us.
Admit that you care about me, too.
I know you do. I care about you.
I care about you.
I care about you. I care about you.
I think with you, you make me better.
Oh! You make me want to be better.
You make me want to be good.
And I think I can.
With you, I think I can.
And if you want to be scared, that's okay.
Just be scared with me.
I don't want to be the future of this hospital if you're not there with me.
I didn't know you still felt that way about me.
I love you.
I love you.
I freaking love you.
I can totally see you in ten years...
...a little salt and pepper in your hair, big-shot attending.
You're gonna be a rock star, Alex.
I love you.
You taking my spot on the couch tonight?
Alex Karev isn't coming back.
Left his wife, his friends, his job.
Alex Karev is now a father of two with Izzie Stevens.
And, if they take my recommendation seriously, he'll soon be Chief of Peds at Shawnee Memorial.
What's this got to do with Joey?
Now, it is a matter of luck, of grace that Alex Karev is who he is today.
He could have just as easily been lost to this world, aimless.
But he survived his home, his family, his foster homes and became a man, now a father, a fine surgeon by luck, by chance.
Joey's future shouldn't be a matter of chance.
A child's future can't be a matter of luck.
Just like that? "Okay"?
I just wanted to talk about it.
I mean, you and I, look, we... we both make these big, sweeping decisions without each other.
You... You had a heart attack and didn't tell me.
You... You had a miscarriage and shut me out.
You... You change careers like sweaters.
And I am down for all of it. I...
All the change and the easy and the hard that comes with it.
Of course Joey should have you.
Should have us.
He should have a family.
But... that family needs to learn to talk to each other first, okay?
I'm sorry. I'm sorry.
It's a boy.
A teenage boy!
It's another boy.
You can quit hovering. I'm not hovering.
I'm... deciding whether to come in or give you space...
...or take you day drinking.
♪ But I come back again Okay, whiskey it is.
Pierce is paging me for a cecal bascule for one of our cabbage patients.
Today I am working.
You're my hero.
We hold onto hope, thinking one small detail, one tiny piece of information will somehow make things right, make it different, make it okay... stop the world from spinning off its axis.
Mom, Uncle Alex said when I finish my science project, I'm supposed to show him.
Can you show me?
He helped me come up with it.
It's a dog feeder. See?
When the dog walks on this lever, the pulley tips the bucket over and...
That is so smart!
All we need is a dog.
So, can I show him?
Can we go and show Uncle Alex right now, please?
Come sit here.
Your Uncle Alex loves you so much.
And I just got a letter from him.
You did? I did.
When the truth is...
...there's really no good way to say goodbye.