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30 June 2009 @ 12:02 am
seven letter word for liar - part 2/19  
So they were both guilty. They’d both chosen House over Wilson, chosen the self-loathing, arrogant man over the one in real, undeserved agony. They’d both been selfish. They needed House to know that they cared about him first and foremost. house, md. chapter two.

xXx

She waited.

It was three a.m. before she saw Cuddy tiptoe out of House’s room. She’d left Chase’s apartment around midnight. She told Chase she wanted to be alone. That was very true. She did want to be alone. In fact, she knew that visiting House would make her feel very much alone.

Still, she felt she had to at least go in.

So, she did.

She sat in the chair Cuddy had clung to most of the night, eyes focused straight ahead. She couldn’t bring herself to look at him, not just yet.

“Too skinny to be Lisa.”

She flinched, strangely unnerved by the eeriness of hearing Cuddy’s first name. The fact that House was using it, that he was familiar with it, grated her. It was as if she had walked in on a private conversation that she had no right to overhear. Perhaps she had no right to even be there.

“It’s Cameron,” she replied.

“You thought I didn’t recognize you?”

She smiled, her fingertips brushing his hand. She’d contemplated squeezing it, but House wouldn’t want that. It would make her feel better, but would make him worse. She couldn’t have that.

“Cuddy just left,” Cameron reported. “Figured she got paged, so I thought now was as good a time as any to slip in.”

House nodded. “Cuddy would have let you in.”

Cameron bit her lip. “I know.”

“You didn’t want her to know you were visiting me?” He sounded so strange. He wasn’t amused at all. She hated that she was pitying him when she should detest him. She hated that she thought of him before Wilson.

“No, I didn’t want to…embarrass her,” Cameron admitted. It was partly true. Cuddy wouldn’t like Cameron viewing her pain.

House frowned. “She was only in here, because no one else wanted to be.”

“That’s not true,” Cameron lied.

“Okay, fine, maybe you wanted to be…but….”

She allowed his sentence to trail off. He needed to rest, not talk. This had probably been a bad idea.

“He doesn’t hate you,” she insisted. How could she know? She hadn’t spoken to him. She hadn’t seen him since…. She tensed. James Wilson was a lot of things, most of them rather noble. He didn’t hate House. She could honestly claim she believed that. He hated himself. He hated the situation. He wanted to hate his alcohol abusing friend, but he didn’t. Wilson was angry that he couldn’t be angry. She studied House’s weary face. She was all too familiar with the feeling.

“He should,” House offered at last.

Cameron changed the subject. “I could have killed you,” she muttered, shaking her head.

A slight sparkle arose in House’s eyes.

“On the bus,” she explained. “Your brilliant re-enactment.” She shook her head again. “You could have died.”

“Oh, come now,” House remarked. “You wouldn’t have let me die. You would have brought me back to life yourself, just to strangle me dead again.”

Cameron felt a small smile tug at the corners of her lips. “I thought about slapping you when you woke up.”

“I was quite surprised you didn’t.”

“Yeah, well….”

“Chase,” House said knowingly. “That guy seems to get in our way a lot.” He winked.

Cameron smiled warmly. “It’s gonna get better, you know.”

House looked away, clearly done with the conversation.

Cameron fumbled to stand up, suddenly embarrassed by the intimacy of her coming here. “Goodnight House,” she managed, heading for the door.

She couldn’t tell, but she swore he mumbled a faint ‘goodnight’ back. The idea made her laugh. She must have imagined it.

“Dr. Cameron.”

She froze, nearly smacking into Cuddy.

She looked down, guilty. “I was just….”

“I know,” Cuddy insisted, tenderly. “And, I’m sure he appreciates it, in his own twisted way.” She paused. “I get the feeling he’s going to need all of the friends he can get.”

“Well,” Cameron said, tilting her head. “I suppose that makes two of us.”

Cuddy nodded. “Foreman?” she suggested. “Chase?”

“Foreman, possibly,” Cameron replied. “Not Chase. Never Chase.”

“I’d assume as much.” Cuddy pursed her lips. “Have you talked to Wilson?”

Cameron’s eyes flicked to Cuddy guiltily. Cuddy knew she’d left with Chase earlier that evening. Cuddy knew she must have gone home and come back here, unable to sleep. Cameron’s actions were always quite easily read and Cuddy was implying something that neither of the woman were able to admit to.

“No,” she replied. “Not yet.”

Cuddy nodded.

“What about you?” Cameron challenged lightly.

It was a seemingly normal question, but the significance pressed down on the two, a significance that would go unseen by any of the other doctors, a significance only they could understand.

“No,” Cuddy said honestly. “Not yet.”

So they were both guilty. They’d both chosen House over Wilson, chosen the self-loathing, arrogant man over the one in real, undeserved agony. They’d both been selfish. They needed House to know that they cared about him first and foremost. Cameron was almost disgusted with herself.

A look of shame from Cuddy read that she too hated the way things were. But, it was how they were, and neither could change it.

Cameron would always be House’s girl and House would always be Cuddy’s guy, while the only heroic man slipped away unnoticed, but not forgotten.

They’d hate themselves thoroughly, but it wouldn’t change the truth. Of course Wilson knew they’d choose House. On some level Chase must even know.

House would always come first.

And they’d spend every moment after that trying to make this unfairness up to the people they should really care about.


 

 
 
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