HOUSE, M.D.: Untitled

Author's note: Firstly, I did hint at this in my fic 'Saying Yes'. (It's the last sentence.) Anyway, I saw this scene, and thought a little ficlet was warranted.

Bonus Points and a prize for anyone who can spot a reference to a previous 'House' episode.

James Wilson listened carefully as he headed out to his car at the end of the day. And just as he always did, he heard the tap-step sound of his friend Greg House's footsteps a short ways behind him. He pretended not to notice, instead just kept walking to the parking garage. House would say something eventually. He always did.

Sure enough, House's voice came from behind. "On your way to polish Vogler's car?"

And now Wilson was supposed to say something random. "Gone are the days of the grumpy old doc seeing patients in the basement of his house, getting paid a few chickens."

To which House would give a simple, random answer. It was their routine, and they'd been in it for about 12 years. "How will I eat?"

And next, as Wilson once phrased it, 'The part where I give you advice and pretend you're going to listen to it'.

"You know what Cuddy has been locked in with Vogler about all day today, and yesterday?" Wilson knew that with the avoidance of Cuddy and Vogler, House wouldn't know the potential trouble he was in. And Wilson had to warn him. He owed him that.

But House was still happily in the dark, as evidenced by the flippant comment of, "Floor polish costs through the roof?"

Damn it, House, this isn't a joke! For once, take this seriously. "You. Her secretary's been to the photocopier all day with your records. It's all they're looking at in there." Wilson saw House's shocked face and had the brief though that maybe House was actually listening to him.

"My car has been stolen."

Or not. Wait a second, Wilson thought as he looked around as well and saw …a 1965 red Corvette in House's parking space. "Or… rein-CAR-nated." Wilson saw a pink slip stuck under the wiper. He went to yank it. "Pink slip. 'A gift from the Arnello brothers'." This wasn't fair! Wilson always tried to do the right thing and got nothing for it. House did the wrong thing most of the time and got a CAR! On what planet was that considered fair!

But House was beaming. "You know, they're gangsters, sure, but they're thoughtful, too."

Talk him out of it. Talk him out of it, now! Logic. Play the logic card. It's graft. He can't keep this. Talk him out of it, fast! Wilson tried to voice the objection. "You can't keep it…" 'You can't keep it… because I want it! Oh, that thing's a beauty. "It's graft." Okay, now he was just trying to convince himself.

But House wasn't falling for it. "No, no, no, no. Uh-uh. Graft is if I tell them I'll only make it better if he slips me a couple bucks. A payoff for something I'm not supposed to do. If I'd asked for the payoff (which I didn't), I would have done the bad thing anyway. So there's nothing wrong with this."

Perfect logic. Absolutely flawless. It sounded like a very reasonable argument. All Wilson could say was, "Right…"

House continued walking around the car. Damn, it was gorgeous. Wilson was drooling over it. And small wonder. Oh, man. If he had to give this sweet baby up… well, he might as well cripple his other leg and be totally unable to drive, because that's what it would take to keep him from driving this wonder. "Damn. '65. Perfectly restored." He had to keep it. Had to. It was a gift from a mobster. "What do you think a guy like Joey would do if someone turned down a gift? That's kind of an insult, isn't it?"

Wilson had cracked, but was maintaining a hesitant expression. If House kept the car, he'd surely let Wilson drive it at some time, right? "He might hurt you." Of course, if he does, Wilson thought with a touch of shame. You can always bequeath it to me. "It's definitely possible."

"I'm screwed," House said, happily.

Wilson, on the other hand, thought, 'Screwed'? YOU'RE the one with the corvette, you limping twerp!

"Gotta take the car." House gave Wilson that smile. The one that said 'I'm going to give you a treat, but first I'll dangle it in front of you and tease you for a bit. "So who should I take for the maiden voyage? More importantly, who has the keys?"

Wilson shook his head and opened the door. "Unlocked, Ace." He saw a small envelope on the driver's seat, grabbed it, and handed it to House who got in.

House stretched out and noticed the comfort of the vehicle. He liked it. Damn, he LOVED this car! And there was Wilson, looking like an 8-year-old whose best friend had a brand new bike. "Wilson, get in. I have to get home." Wilson beamed and got in, putting on his seatbelt.

House turned on the corvette and listened to the purring growl of the engine. Pulling out of the slot, House headed out of the parking lot and onto the road. He had an inkling that the brakes and gas pedal had been slightly altered, because House didn't need to exert that much pressure to slow down and speed up. Okay, so they're very thoughtful gangsters. This was too perfect. A warm night and a beautiful car. Life didn't get much sweeter.

Wilson was enjoying the ride as well. The ride to his home was smooth, and he was afraid to let it end. But just as he closed the door, House said, "Don't drive in tomorrow. I'll pick you up."

Wilson nodded and waved as House zoomed off in his little red corvette.

Well, with Vogler lurking about, at least someone was happy.