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Cats' Corners: the little HOUSE in the woods....
Where House is NEVER safe...
And So It Goes... [new one-shot] 
20th-Oct-2008 02:19 pm
Title:  And So It Goes
Genre:  Friendship
Characters:  House, Wilson
WordCount:  800
Rating:  PG

Just a quick little sketch.  In words, because I can't draw.



House sits alone at his desk pretending.  The fact that he’s alone, he thinks, just makes the pretense that much more pitiful, but what’s he gonna do?  It’s who he is. 

The pretense today involves pain—but not the usual sort. Today’s pain involves people.  Human beings.  Emotions.  Feelings.  He didn’t mean to hurt anyone’s feelings—he just wasn’t thinking.  And just because Stevens is an ass doesn’t mean that House can’t see himself enjoying his company, under different circumstances.  Maybe… maybe he’ll invite the guy out for a beer, give it a try. 

It’s not that he’s lonely, or anything; after all, he’s got Wilson.  It’s just that if he stops to think about it, he’s gotta admit that what he said to Stevens—but he’s not going to stop to think about it.  This pain, it’s unfamiliar, not like the leg. 

His leg, he realizes, is actually almost behaving itself today; he gives it a 6 on the scale.  Another Vicodin, and he’ll be able to concentrate wholly on his new pain.  So he doesn’t take another Vicodin. 

What he takes instead is a deep breath, because Wilson’s out in the hall, and clearly headed in his direction.  And from the forceful sound of his footsteps, House can tell it’s lecture time.  In this, at least, he isn’t disappointed. 

“How the hell could you tell Stevens that your car mechanic is a better diagnostician than he is?  It isn’t his fault that the patient presented with atypical symptoms for angina.  And—just in case it slipped your mind—those misleading symptoms write your paycheck!” 

“Oh, good; then we can get rid of Cuddy, thought that was her job.” 

Wilson sighs explosively.  “Not gonna play word games with you, House—I don’t have the time.  Some of us are actually responsible for more than one or two patients, you know.  I’m only here because—lucky for you—Harmon came to me with your latest little gaffe instead of going to Cuddy.  Seems he figures I’ll have a better chance of getting you to apologize to his best cardiologist than she would.” 

Wilson stops talking and studies House.  It’s probably just wishful thinking on his part, but does House actually look a little guilty?  “House, it’s just politics, part of the job.  Play the game; say you’re sorry, okay?” 

Wilson’s hopes die inside House’s loud scoffing noise.  “Let me get this straight,” House says.  “Word games are a waste of time, but we give social games a fancy name and make them a prerequisite?” 

Wilson grits his teeth.  “You can’t just go around insulting your colleagues,” he says patiently.  “It’s not conducive to friendship; more importantly, it makes for a lousy work environment.  Then patients suffer.” 

“Patients suffer because their doctors are asses.  I didn’t say anything to that goon that wasn’t true.” 

“Just because it’s true doesn’t make it right, House.  And next time, he might think twice about coming to you with a tough case.  What’s your truth worth then?  A life?” 

“He’ll come.  He’ll come because I’m the best, and he needs what I can give him.  Only thing that’ll change is, he won’t waste my time with all those stupid social niceties.  The way I see it, that’s a win/win—win for the patient.  More importantly, win for me.”  House grins triumphantly. 

“You hurt his feelings, and you don’t care,” Wilson says slowly as House nods.  Wilson closes his eyes, tips his head back, and tries to swallow his frustration.  “And you know why you’re so infuriating?  You’re right.  Every damned thing you’ve said is true.  You don’t need friends; you just need puzzles.”  Wilson shakes his head. 

“Now you’re getting the idea,” House observes smugly. 

Wilson looks hard at House.  “All right, then.  Here’s one for you.  Why in hell do I stay friends with you?  Puzzle that one out for me, why don’t you?”  Wilson shoots House a disgusted look, turns on his heel, and exits the office. 

House stares after his friend, telling himself not to worry.  He’ll be back.  Wilson won’t give up on him.  Wilson always comes back. 

A sudden sharp spasm causes House to wince, pulls his thoughts away from feelings, emotions, messy stuff. The pain in his leg has jumped now, from a 6 to a 9.  He takes the bottle of pills from his pocket and thumbs the cap.  No.  He slips the vial back into his pocket and sighs.  House sits quietly, not pretending anymore, allowing his leg free rein.  Because there’s nothing confusing about this, nothing sneaky or complicated.

This one thing, this physical thing, is, in the end, the only pain that House can understand.  He closes his eyes, and welcomes it. 


20th-Oct-2008 06:50 pm (UTC)
That was cute. I also feel very sorry for him though; poor bastard. And Wilson will always be around cause he's waiting for teh bumsmex! <3
20th-Oct-2008 06:54 pm (UTC)
yeah, sad little tale. thanks for reading! :)
20th-Oct-2008 06:51 pm (UTC)
aw! *hugs house even though he's a meanie*...*hugs wilson for good measure*

nice job!

20th-Oct-2008 06:55 pm (UTC)
house doesn't mean to be mean, though. he's just... house. :(

20th-Oct-2008 07:09 pm (UTC)
Personally, I don't think House has anything to apologize for.

ETA that I am preparing to run out the door on multiple errands (must meet deadline for something) but oh, this is spot-on for House, isn't it?

This is what I meant about his defective armor. He feels stuff whether he'll admit it or not, and Wilson ... just made it worse instead of better.

Edited at 2008-10-20 07:14 pm (UTC)
20th-Oct-2008 07:15 pm (UTC)
Neither do I, actually.
20th-Oct-2008 07:19 pm (UTC)
yes, but poor wilson is doing his best in a no-win situation, and house will realize that. of course, then house'll feel bad about that, but won't be able to admit it.... and so it goes.....
20th-Oct-2008 07:15 pm (UTC)
I think House is right. And what does that other doctor care what he thinks anyway?

Nice snippet.
20th-Oct-2008 07:22 pm (UTC)
you're right, and so is house; the other doctor won't give a damn, as long as house keeps doing what he does best.

(Deleted comment)
20th-Oct-2008 07:42 pm (UTC)
but the thing is, house is messed up. and wilson's the only one he'll listen to. and even house must find a way to function in the real world. wilson's just worried, and showing that worry in the way he knows best, that's all.
(Deleted comment)
20th-Oct-2008 09:16 pm (UTC)
"if I can't do anything right then why try to get along with people at all."

i couldn't agree more, and i've had a story in the works for a month now wherein that's exactly what he decides. but it's too depressing. sometimes, when truth collides with fiction, the results are so dark that they don't even make palatable reading. i'll continue to persevere, however, and see what happens.
20th-Oct-2008 08:13 pm (UTC)
Last line is so true, but I couldn't help wonder if House's pain spiked because he was questioning Wilson's willingness to put up with his ornery ways.
20th-Oct-2008 09:18 pm (UTC)
if House's pain spiked because he was questioning Wilson's willingness to put up with

yes, it did; the emotional component of physical pain is too often overlooked, but it is oh, so real. good catch.
20th-Oct-2008 08:18 pm (UTC)
Hey, it doesn't matters if House hurts anyones feelings. It matters, the patient is living. A human being doesn't die because House says the truth in a understandable way. He is House and you have done a great job. You really have a right feeling for both characters. Wilson will never notice that this is not so way to come through House.
Thanks a lot for sharing those interesting fic. I hate the thought that House punish himself with not taking a vicodin and bear the pain.
20th-Oct-2008 09:39 pm (UTC)
House punish himself with not taking a vicodin and bear the pain.

in this, wilson's right; house is miserable--but not by choice. he's known nothing but pain for so very long that, in a complicated way, i believe he fears its absence more than its consequences.

in this wonderful fic by blackmare, there are many amazing insights into house, but this one really nails what you're talking about: House can't tell discipline from punishment, not when it comes to himself. [quotation from No Accounting, by blackmare]

a tragic truth, that.
21st-Oct-2008 07:33 pm (UTC)
Thank you for those story-link. I enjoyed those fi.
21st-Oct-2008 08:00 pm (UTC)
excellent fic. actually, I think in his way Wilson is just as screwed up as House is, he's just screwed up in a way that more people find acceptable.
21st-Oct-2008 08:17 pm (UTC)
i believe you're right. i think, too, that there's another difference--wilson is able, usually, to accept himself and his failings, whereas house expects perfection from himself. he's therefore unable to find peace with his flaws, and so is destined to a life of self-inflicted misery. he talks a good game, appears to have a huge ego, but inside there's a vulnerable, frightened little boy who strikes out at the rest of the world in his fear. wilson, on the other hand, is able to take comfort in a knowledge that's apparently been denied house--that none of us is perfect. it's one thing to know that on an intellectual plane, and quite another to deal with it on an emotional level.
21st-Oct-2008 08:19 pm (UTC)
I bet Wilson would never cop to some of his faults though. I'm sure he's in total denial about his passive aggressive tendencies, for example.
23rd-Oct-2008 08:12 pm (UTC)
Oh, poor House... I like the tell-tale jumping of his pain from a 6 to a 9 (ow...) when realizing Wilson maybe won't come back this time (at least that's how I read this, I could be totally wrong).
When you write like this, you don't need to be able to draw, I see it all before me real clearly! Thanks for sharing, as always.
23rd-Oct-2008 09:57 pm (UTC)
house's pain jumped because he'd purposely withheld from himself the pill he knew he needed to take to keep it in check--and because of his insecurity about wilson's return; the combination is why it jumped so quickly and so extremely. as i told srsly_yes above, good catch! :)