|I Drove All Night
Author: RogueButterfly PM
House attempts to do something nice for Cuddy. Never does quite work out though, does it.Rated: Fiction T - English - Angst - G. House & L. Cuddy - Words: 2,458 - Reviews: 13 - Favs: 6 - Follows: 16 - Published: 01-19-10 - id: 5679026
|A+ A- Full 3/4 1/2 Expand Tighten|
Title: I Drove All Night
Disclaimer: I own House; I also own the rights to Star Wars merchandise and the Pluto is a planet franchise.
Description: House attempts to do something nice for Cuddy. Never does quite work out though, does it.
Un-beta'd, sorry my beta is very busy with exams.
The ebbing of an engine was switched off swiftly, three houses down from the desired destination. Two unsteady legs dismounted the motorcycle and stood in the chilly winter air, waiting for the telltale sign that his presence had been detected. The flicking on of lights, a bellow from her window - informing him it was much too early for his presence and he should depart immediately! or something along those lines with a few extra words that would make a sailor blush. A third leg met the other two and the figure began to move through the snow, much more surely with the walking aid.
Front door bore little hindrance as it gave way to the key from under the pot plant by the door, swinging open with little sound, door was closed to the snow, shoes toed off and cane left leaning against the wall. Making his way to the lion's den was slow and deliberate; his sock clothed feet slow against the floor boards, despite the cold.
Framed by the doorway his lanky figure paused and observed the thankfully lone figure in the bed, had she not been alone this trip would hardly have been worth the effort. Quick movements had the alarm clock rendered useless! By the cord being forcefully removed from the plug, and he was once more in the hall way. Not noting the way her hair fanned across the pillow or the soft inhale and exhale of each breath she made. He had no time.
Disgruntled noises emerged from the room just across the hall and the first flicker of emotion etched his forehead. He defiantly did not have time for that.
Entering the room of yellow walls and a ridiculous amount of plush toys he moved to the source of the noises, looming above the crib. Wide blue eyes started up at the figure above who was not her mother, mouth dropping open in what would undoubtedly be enough noise to wake everyone in the neighborhood. He acted quickly.
"Under no circumstance are you aloud to continue any train of thought which results in sound. I have something planned for your mother which at the time requires for her to be asleep." Again the child made as if to speak but was hastily interrupted by a finger pointed in her direction. "You threw up on me, you owe me!" In all likelihood the child had no notion of what he had just said, however it had the desired effect. Mouth changed to an 'o' shape and vocal cords were not evoked.
Lifting the child up under the arm pits he pulled her into an awkward sitting position against his hip and hobbled from the room.
-Morning, an half hour later
Cuddy woke slowly, burying her face under the covers from the sunlight filtering through the gaps in her curtains. Lucas was out of town on a case and she would undoubtedly be drawn from her safe haven behind bed sheets either by her alarm or her human alarm from across the hall. Letting out a slow breath the decision to simply bite the bullet, forced her to throw the sheets back and turn to her alarm.
Her none working alarm.
Deciding the snow had knocked the power out she pulled herself to her feet, feeling the cold almost instantly. An extra pair of socks and a jumper was pulled on before she made her way to Rachel's crib.
Rachel's empty crib.
Panic drilled past the cold and tore at every bone in her body as she spun about the room hoping Rachel had simply learnt to climb the bars of her cage and was sitting safely on the floor amongst her stuffed toys.
Sprinting from the room she rushed to the bathroom, throwing the partly closed door open and leaving the room once more when no evidence of a child was seen. "RACHEL!"
The sound was faint, but there. Cuddy spun on her heal, running into the kitchen.
There in the middle of her kitchen floor lay House, surrounded by what she presumed was flour and her daughter sitting on his chest beaming up at her.
Knees buckling on their own accord she sunk against the wall, the sense of panic quickly turning to anger. "What precisely do you think you're doing?" she hadn't meant for her voice to be quite that cold but lacked the will to take it back.
She watched as her diagnosticians face fell as he pulled himself up into a sitting position, Rachel contentedly in his lap "I was…going to make you breakfast."
Lips pulled together and she was fueled by anger to her feat "and you were going to cook my daughter for me?"
"No, Cuddy. Look.."
"No, you look." In one long stride she was in front of him and pulling Rachel into her arms "I don't want to wake up to find my daughter missing. I don't want my Diagnostician in my kitchen and I do not want breakfast from you now, tomorrow or any time in the near future."
She watched him make his way to his feet, his eyes seeking hers for understanding. When he found none he nodded slowly "I was just trying to do something nice." Shoulders shrugged and drooped, his lanky frame sinking in on its self in defeat.
"I know you were." Her voice softened "but you're going around it the same way you always do, without thinking. I know you mean well, it just never seems to work out."
"Yeah" he rubbed his temple "never does, does it." Briefly he met her eyes again and she knew what he wasn't talking about, what he wasn't saying. "I'll see you at work."
She was left with one intact child and one less then clean kitchen.
-Work, later that day
"How'd the making Cuddy breakfast thing go?" Wilson asked as he caught up to House entering the hospital just past ten.
"I'm never putting one of your plans into action ever again."
"Wait!" Wilson dove between the rapidly closing elevator doors. "What happened?" House pulled a disgruntled face in his direction "was it really that bad?"
"I don't want to talk about it."
Wilson let out a baffled chorus of noises "It was fool proof! You do something nice for her, dazzle her with your cooking expertise and wela your back on her good side and ever closer to – how do you phrase it? Hitting that?"
House rolled his eyes as the elevator finally released him from being in close confines with Cupid himself "Your fool proof plan had several flaws, which at the time may have seemed wise but now I see the error of my ways. You are an idiot and I want nothing further to do with you or your hair brain schemes!" Promptly the door marked Gregory House M.D. was slammed shut in James Wilson's face.
"What did you do to him?"
Cuddy looked up at Wilson with an exasperated, yet expectant expression on her face as he proceeded to pace up and down the length of her desk.
"He called me an idiot."
She frowned "he does that all the time."
"Not like this. That. That was strange even for him. What did you do?"
"I haven't done anything." She looked down at the quarterly reports she was probably not going to finish until Wilson had finished his tirade through her office and let out a sigh.
"That's just it!" she looked back up "you haven't done anything to him."
"Great. I do something - I'm the bad guy. I don't do something - I'm the bad guy?" throwing her hands up in defeat she leant back in her chair, ignoring what was more than likely the beginning of a headache.
"You know what I mean! He was trying to do something nice for you, would it really have killed you to let him make you breakfast?"
"He kidnapped Rachel! How did he think I would react?"
Wilson paused mid stride "he did what?"
Five eyes turned towards Wilson in surprise as he burst into the room.
"Go run a blood panel, test for drugs, whatever you do when I can't think of things to keep your eager young minds stimulated."
Wilson waited for House's team to file out of the office before throwing a finger up at house "I said make her breakfast, not play hide and seek with her and her daughter!"
Cane tapped twice on the floor before House let out an exasperated breath "apparently the two come hand in hand. Ever tried making breakfast without removing someone's kid from where they were last seen? It's not pretty."
Cutting off what was probably going to be a very long very boring speech House intersected "look, the kid was making noises and would have woken Cuddy up. Remember you said the surprise was the important part of the plan. Well I bought her into the kitchen with me and I attempted to make pancakes. Didn't work, Cuddy freaked, I left. End of story."
Running a hand through his hair several times he focused on House, really focused, for the first time that day "you look sad."
"I always look sad."
"Stop deflecting and not this sad. You wanted the breakfast thing to work."
"Well of course I wanted it to work! I want Cuddy to let me do something for her and not get her defenses up or kick me out. I want to be allowed to enter her house without having to sneak around and I want to.." he let out a breath "I don't know what I want." House turned away, hiding his features from any further scrutiny.
Wilson's face fell as he looked at the ex drug addict he shared an unorthodox friendship with. Lifting a hand he placed it on his shoulder and squeezed lightly.
- House's office, Later that day
Gingerly Cuddy pushed the door to Gregory House's office open and sat opposite his desk, brown paper bag clutched in one hand and an unsure smile on her lips.
"What can I do for you boss?" House questioned without looking up from the magazine he was paying more attention to then it rightfully deserved.
Taking in a deep breath, as if preparing herself for a battle she deposited the paper bag on his desk, hastily retreating her hands as he looked up.
"Generally things are concealed because the items inside are supposed to be a surprise for the recipient." Deliberately her tone was kept light, but was unable to keep the slight baiting from her words. She was after all – only human.
"Generally these concealed items are wrapped in balloon decorated paper." He pulled the bag towards him.
Smiling softly she replied "yes, but it's too early to be your birthday."
Ignoring the urge to pull a face at the words 'your' and 'birthday' he pulled the contents of the bag out. "A reuben sandwich?"
"Noticed you hadn't eaten today."
Carefully he placed the sandwich on top of the paper bag. "What is this?"
"It's a sandwich."
"Fine, it's an apology." She said after the expression he sent her. "I – over reacted and I'm sorry?"
His face twisted in mock concentration "was that a question or a statement?"
Her eyes rolled "eat the damn sandwich, so I can stop feeling guilty." She made to pull herself to a standing position and leave the room.
Pausing mid motion she frowned and lowered herself back into the chair "no? You want me to beg?"
He sighed "no, but if that's what will make you talk to me then sure. Why not."
"We talk!" she scoffed.
"Sure. When was the last time you told me to go to the clinic? Think I've actually been doing that or the last time you spent longer than thirty seconds in the same room as me?"
She stood once more "don't do this."
"Cuddy! I'm sick of you not talking to me, hell I'd be ok with you screeching at me to get to the clinic for hours on end at this point". She made to interrupt, but he stood and limped to stand in front of her as she stared up at him – wide eyed. "We've never been conventional; we argue more than talk, but its better then whatever were doing now".
"Haven't you noticed? Noticed that I'm not bursting into your office at least twice a day, that every time you're in my presence your arms are crossed defensively." She instantly let her arms fall to her sides. He turned and walked to the opposite side of the room, running a hand over his face as he lent against the shelving.
Cuddy looked towards the floor then back up at him, shifting her weight from one foot to the other.
"Leave. Just walk out." He motioned for the door.
She shook her head "no. I have been avoiding you. "
"Care to explain why?" it came out dryer then had been intended.
"My life…what I expect my life to be. Well, it's what I have now and your.."
"Not a part of that."
"Perfect world doesn't have enough room for a crippled drug addict. Makes sense. I'm sure drugs don't exist in perfect worlds – or cripples."
Frustration entered her voice as she stepped closer to him "That is not what I mean."
"No, I get it. Your white picket fence, two point five kids, golden retriever. Have fun with that." Launching into motion he attempted to hobble past her, her hands lacing tightly around his upper arm preventing a clean getaway.
Meeting his eyes, she loosened her grip around his arm, but didn't release it. "Maybe it's what I want. Can't you be happy for me?"
He pulled his arm away, physically and emotionally turning away from her "I know you Lisa Cuddy – and you do not know what you want."
Walking unhindered, he left his office. Leaving a singular lone figure standing abandoned in the center of his office.