Craig is woken up by someone taking his blood. The day-time director, Harold, tells Craig to select his menu choices. Craig enjoys the simplicity of the exercise and wishes “the world were like this.”
At breakfast, Craig sits with Bobby and Johnny. Bobby explains that he is anxious about an upcoming interview for an adult home. Craig suggests to him that past mistakes help you learn. He says that “it’s when people compliment you that you’re in trouble.” Bobby tells Craig that Johnny is a talented guitarist. Bobby confesses that he’s nervous for his interview because of his shirt, and Craig offers to loan him a shirt.
Nurse Monica interviews Craig, who tells her about his conversation with Aaron and Nia. Monica says that it’s common for people to make “big decisions” during their stays. Monica notes Craig’s friendships with the other patients and warns him not to become distracted by them. Monica tells Craig that he is expected to participate in activities. Craig doesn’t feel that he has any hobbies but agrees to go to the arts-and-crafts activity that evening.
Craig waits at the end of a hall to meet Noelle. As he waits, he remembers his visit with his parents that day. His mother has agreed to bring a shirt, and his dad has offered to bring Blade II on Wednesday evening to watch together.
Noelle meets Craig. She explains that they are going to play a game of asking and answering questions. Noelle tells Craig that she has been in the hospital for twenty-one days and that she is there because someone found her cutting her face. She goes to a private school in Manhattan but “[spends] most of [her] time in ballet.” Noelle says that she is leaving the hospital on Thursday. At the end of their fast-paced conversation, Craig asks if they can kiss. Noelle laughs and says no. They race each other to arts and crafts.
Joanie, “a big smiling lady with lots of makeup and bracelets,” is the recreation director. She leads the arts and crafts session. Craig takes in the activity lounge and the posters decorating the walls. He finds it “depressing”—what he would “expect a mental hospital to look like,” with “adults reduced to children.”
Humble teases Craig and Noelle as they enter together. Joanie introduces herself to Craig and explains that it is a free-period arts recreational therapy session. Craig can’t think of anything to draw, and the group tries to help him break his “artistic block.” Noelle suggests that Craig can draw something from his childhood, and Craig begins drawing maps.
Other members of the group admire Craig’s work, and Ebony guesses that it is a drawing of a brain. Craig considers it and tells her that “that’s exactly what it is.” During the course of the session, Craig completes five drawings. Noelle leaves without Craig’s noticing, leaving a note behind telling him to meet her at the same time and place on Tuesday.
When he returns to his room for the night, Craig tells Muqtada that he is “quite a bit” better. He...
(The entire section contains 807 words.)
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