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Why is it that everybody is freaked out about Derek screen time. He is not the only with little screentime, and he had lot of screen time the first half of the season.
If people would pay attention to the story more rather than whether or not their favorite character is getting enough screentime, they would realize that Shonda and the writers are exploring Meredith's desire to become a mother, just like the writers explored Derek's desire to be Chief last season.
The only problem is that both Derek's storyline in season 6 and Meredith storyline this season is that they lacks depth. But otherwise Derek little screen time has to do with the fact that his function ths season is to support Meredith with her struggle to get a baby, just like last season Meredith got little screentime because her funciton was to support Derek in his new job at the time.
After last episode I doubt that Meredith will end up being Chief Resident, she choose to do the Alzhimer's trial over her mother's trial which would've given her tremedous advantange in the Chief resident race. Not only she would've had the Chief ear completely, she would gain tremedous professional prestige with it even more than the Alzhimers's trial.
If Meredith does get the chief residency, I think she is going to turn it down. I think Meredith want to be a mommy and work with Derek on the Alzhimer's trial more than being chief resident.
Again it will be difficult whether Derek works with Meredith on the trial or not. The clinical trial is personal, each patient will remind him of what could be Meredith's fate, whether she is working with him or not.
KMK said it that on the next episode, Derek has a difficult time working on the clinical trial because it is too personal and too close to home. Meredith is not working with him on the next episode, Alex is the one working with him. So Meredith working on the clinical trial or not won't change Derek having a emotional difficult time working on it.
In order for him not to have emotional difficulty working on the trial Derek needs ot reasses his reasons for working on it. His reasons can not be about his fears of Meredith getting Alzhiemer's. It has to be about finding a cure for thousands of people who suffer from the disease. Meredith developing Alzhimer's or not developing Alzheimer's should be an irrelevant reason for the trial.