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Cats' Corners: the little HOUSE in the woods....
Where House is NEVER safe...
Desperate Hour (eighth in the HOUR series) 
28th-Jun-2007 10:44 am

Title: Desperate Hour
Characters: House, Wilson
Rating: PG
Genre: Angst
Word Count: 900
Summary: Okay, kids; you just knew this one was coming; it was... inevitable..  The previous vignettes, in order, are:
Visiting HourHappy HourMidnight Hour,   Fifty-Minute Hour,  Random HourPainful Hour, and Dark Hour .



In a real dark night of the soul, it is always three o’clock in the morning.  ~F. Scott Fitzgerald


3:00am:  Wilson

Tonight’s the night.  Wilson’s planned for this with his usual attention to detail.  He’s saved two weeks’ worth of his sleeping pills—no one even questioned why he’d suddenly begun accepting them each evening—and, for good measure, he’s also got six of his antidepressants.


He’ll take all the pills shortly after 3:00am, when the guard makes rounds, because the guard won’t come by again until 6:00am—and by then it’ll be too late.


Wilson had thought he’d be able to handle prison; after all, two years isn’t forever.  And maybe his career is gone, and that’s a blow—but he’d still have the other good thing in his life; he’d still have House.  But House’s last visit, when Wilson had been injured, had changed everything.  He could see that the guilt was destroying House—and Wilson can’t allow that to happen.


Sure, his suicide will upset his friend.  But death is finite; it has a definite end, and the survivors move on, given time.  Imprisonment, Wilson’s decided, goes on forever.  Even after he’s served his sentence and been released, his continued presence on this Earth would be a daily reminder to House of the lost medical license, the lost two years.  A reminder that, Wilson knows, would eventually kill House. 


I’ve screwed up enough.  My marriages.  My career.  I’ve already lost House’s trust; things might never be the same.  And without House, there’s nothing left for me.  Nothing.  So Wilson will die instead.



3:00am:  House

Tonight’s the night.  House has made no plans, said no goodbyes.  But it’s time.  So he retrieves his secret stash of morphine tablets—he’s not gonna die like a junkie, an empty syringe by his side—and the bottle of aged scotch he’d been saving for Wilson’s release from prison; it’ll wind up providing release for House instead.


It’s almost 3:00am, the time he’s picked, at random, to start the process.  He wants to be dead by dawn, doesn’t want to suffer through another cruel, cheerful sunrise.


House had thought he’d be able to handle his guilt about Wilson’s imprisonment.  But his last visit to Wilson had changed everything.  The look in Wilson’s eyes… the hurt.  He’d needed something House couldn’t give; he’d needed a real friend, and House doesn’t know how to be that. House had realized then that Wilson wouldn’t ever be able to move on with his life as long as House was a part of it.  So House will remove himself from Wilson’s life quickly, cleanly—no different than the surgical removal of a cancer, really.


Yeah, his suicide will upset Wilson.  But Wilson’s a pragmatic guy; he’ll realize, eventually, that it’s for the best.  When Wilson gets out of prison, it’ll be difficult enough establishing a new life—he doesn’t need the added anchor of being House’s friend to weigh him down further.  That anchor would drown him, eventually.  So House will drown himself first.




Wilson feigns sleep as the guard passes.  Once the man is gone, Wilson goes to the small stainless steel sink in his cell.  He divides the pills into two handfuls and places the first group of ten in his mouth, swallowing it quickly with a handful of the rusty-tasting water.  He takes the second bunch of pills the same way, then returns to his cot.


House lays out the pills on the coffee table.  He figures twenty ought to do it.  Any more than that might cause him to throw them all up; any less, and his stupid body would probably just think it was at some awesome party, and then he’d wind up living through another mocking dawn.


As Wilson waits for his final sleep to overtake him, vivid pictures start to play in his mind.  Holding House’s bruised, crushed hand between his own after Wilson’s plan to detox him had gone terribly wrong.  Watching House lie in a coma of his own choosing, chasing the dream of having a normal life again.  Thinking House had terminal brain cancer, and not being able to eat or sleep or even breathe that week, because House was dying. House, needing Wilson.  House needs Wilson.


House picks up the first bunch of pills and stares at them.  But instead of seeing the chalky white ovals, he sees Wilson.  Standing forlornly with a suitcase at House’s front door, his life falling apart and nowhere else to go.  Yelling at House like a rebellious teenager over an affair with a patient that would’ve ruined Wilson’s career.  Telling House that their friendship was one of the two good things he had, and listening to his voice crack and break as he said it. 


Damn him—too stupid to know I’m no good for him.  I pulled him down, and the fool let me do it.  When I’m gone, the world’ll eat him alive—no one left to watch out for him.  He’ll never make it; damn—Wilson needs me.  


Wilson can’t do it; House needs him.  He bolts from the cot to the toilet and forces his fingers down his throat.  The pills and the bile burn as they come up, and Wilson gasps for air.  When he can breathe again, he counts the pills, floating and dissolving in the water—they’re all there.  He sighs in satisfaction; he’ll live.


House can’t do it; Wilson needs him.  Slowly, he collects all the pills and puts them back in the amber bottle.  Then he limps to the kitchen and carefully replaces the bottle of scotch in the cabinet.  He returns to the couch and allows himself a frustrated sigh; screw it—he’ll live.


Hours later, the sun rises on another day, and they’re both awake to see it.

On to:
Witching Hour

28th-Jun-2007 05:29 pm (UTC)
You know, all you're really proving is that they are soulmates here. I mean look at it this way. They plan to take the pills on the same night, at the same time because they think that they are dragging the other one down. Then they stop or throw up said pills because they realize the other person needs them. Soulmates. Lets not even get started on the fact that both of them were going to do pills, possibly symbolic of the vicodin that put them in this position in the first place.

God, this is great! (Before you call the people with the white coats, I'll admit to taking an anti-depressant today. I'm not insane, I swear!) Anyhow great job, I can't wait for the one were Tritter goes down. Make me proud hun!! ;<)
28th-Jun-2007 05:47 pm (UTC)
You know, all you're really proving is that they are soulmates here.

'twas my intent, from the start. i don't much like the new term "bromance," being used to indicate a deep, nonsexual male friendship--but i must admit, it does tend to cover all aspects of relationships like house and wilson's. kind of like the old star trek kirk and spock thing, of a brotherly love that goes 'to the soul,' or some such like that.
28th-Jun-2007 06:51 pm (UTC)
*laughs* I believe that it is called a Bachalor Marriage or a Boston Marriage. Those are some of my favorite things in the world. So sweet, deep without the need for things like sex and all that other stuff.

My best friend and I call B.M. partners, platonic life partners. *sighs and blushes*

Anyhow, I'm glad it 'twas your intent ma'am. I agree I don't like the term bromance either. I like B.M. or P.L.P. so much better. I've got other pairs for you, the Odd Couple, Vern and Shirly (okay I know I screwed up the first ladies name, give me a break its been awhile since it was on Nick at Nite), for the first few years of Smallville Clark and Lex, Legolas and Aragorn... god I just realized that I watch too much tv and read into way to many books.
28th-Jun-2007 09:06 pm (UTC)
Just curious, how much longer do we have to wait until Tritter gets put in the slammer? ;<)
28th-Jun-2007 09:50 pm (UTC)
how much longer

i am so not answering that because i don't know yet, but, uh, nice try. really nice try! ;)
29th-Jun-2007 12:13 am (UTC)
am so not answering that because i don't know yet, but, uh, nice try. really nice try!

I try, what can I say? I like answers. ;<) But for you, I will attempt to curve my Housian nature and be patient.

Just one question. Which one is currently at the wheel; House or Wilson?
29th-Jun-2007 12:23 am (UTC)
Just one question

just one answer; give it up, child! i currently have a headache and a dark mood simultaneously warring for my attention, and my atttempt at early bedtime didn't work, so it would be downright dangerous for either of them to be at the wheel at the moment--especially with me working the controls! unless you'd care for a nice, fiery, fatal accident? (might work--i'd make certain they die together; how's that?)
29th-Jun-2007 02:17 am (UTC)
I'll behave. Hope you feel better and good night.
29th-Jun-2007 02:37 am (UTC)
damn. the idea of the fiery fatal crash was really beginning to grow on me..... trying bed again--just had lovely spearmint/chamomille tea. g'nite.
26th-Jul-2007 08:02 pm (UTC)

In my crowd, we use 'chosen family' or 'brother/sister-in-spirit', depending on the degree and details, to define those shades of gray between friends and more-than-friends... They aren't defined by age, sex, etc., but simply by a closeness of the heart and soul.

Thank you for realizing this shade of grey exists - not all do, and that confuses me/drives me a bit batty....