Title: "Nothing To Fear"
Author: Jackie W.
Season: Season 2
Summary: Fear can immobilize you. It can also be a catalyst for amazing change.
Disclaimer: All publicly recognizable characters and places are the property of FOX, Heal and Toe Films, Bad Hat Harry Productions and NBC Universal Television. This piece of fan fiction was created for entertainment, not monetary purposes, and no infringement on copyrights or trademarks was intended. Previously unrecognized characters and places, and this story, are copyrighted to the author. Any similarity to real persons, living or dead is coincidental and not intended by the author.
Author's Notes: I've been writing Fan fiction for a while but this is my first attempt at House and crew. I'd love to know what you think.
Fear can do amazing things to people. In the midst of a crisis, fear can produce a surge of adrenaline that allows the ordinary human body to perform superhuman feats of strength and daring. Fear can also cause a person to freeze, unable to move either forward or backward.
In Dr. Gregory House's case, fear of loss and betrayal had caused him to close himself off from anyone who might threaten to breach his carefully built walls. Fear made sure that his rules of self-preservation were fervently applied to one Dr. Allison Cameron. Six months ago, the pretty doctor had made a concerted effort to bring down the defenses of one Gregory House. She'd never stood a chance. House had shut her down totally and completely.
It hadn't helped that Stacy Monroe had appeared on the scene with her ill husband, and Dr. Cameron had seen the emotions that House was faced with when around his ex. Allison had thrown in the gauntlet in defeat.
Over the next six months things had settled into a more normal routine. Allison threw herself into her career, and tried to move on from any feelings she might still have for Greg House. She dated a bit, always far from the eyes of her friends and colleagues at Princeton-Plainsboro Hospital. The last thing she wanted or needed was for House to make some snide comment about her love life. By the end of the six months even those who knew her well would be hard pressed to see that she was still in love with the man. She'd become quite an accomplished actress where her feelings were concerned.
House, had been a bit put out at first that she seemed to have moved past her crush on him so easily, even though he was the one that had slammed the door on any possible romance. Still he had other things to deal with, not the least of which was seeing Stacy on a fairly regular basis now that she worked at the hospital. Eventually though that got easier, and House found himself occasionally wondering if he'd done the right thing with Allison. He had to admit that he was attracted to her on several levels. He usually shrugged those thoughts off easily enough. It was too late now and it really was for the best. The relationship could only have been complicated and certainly would have been short lived.
Then fate decided to shake things up a bit once again in his life and since fate had a wicked sense of humor it decided to use fear to fight fear.
When she first discovered the tiny lump, Allison was only slightly panicked. She knew that her mother had had two benign cysts removed over the past ten years, and genetically it was most likely that this was the same type of thing. Unfortunately, it was impossible for her to the keep the procedure to remove the small mass quiet in the small town atmosphere of the hospital. Before she knew it she had four worried males hovering around her, including Dr. Wilson who had insisted on doing the procedure and the testing himself.
She actually was quite touched by the concern shown by Wilson, Chase and Foreman. Men, she had discovered over the years, didn't handle illness in those close to them well. And any illness deemed a female problem really tended to throw them for a loop. These three however managed to keep their feet out of their mouths for the most part, and simply offered optimism and support.
House had her worried, however. Over the course of the two day mini-crisis he had become increasingly quiet. No snide remarks, or sexual double entendres. And when Wilson gave them the good news that as suspected it had just been a harmless cyst, while Chase and Foreman grinned and hugged her, House simply disappeared. Allison made a move to go after him, but Wilson caught up with her out in the corridor and stopped her.
"Give him a few minutes, Allison, You really scared the crap out of him," he counseled.
Allison's eyes grew wide at the implication.
"Yeah," James confirmed with a grin. "I believe that the good doctor is beginning to realize just how true his rule that 'Everyone lies' really is. He's been lying to himself for over six months, and he's just been slapped in the face by the truth."
And as that piece of news sunk in, Allison smiled, and it suddenly dawned on James that it had been a long time since he'd seen that. He could only hope that his friend wouldn't screw it up again. He'd grown to like Allison and really felt she would be good for Greg if he'd just give her a chance.
Meanwhile, Greg House had found an empty room to sit and contemplate exactly what had happened to him. Two days ago he had been perfectly content in his isolation, safe from being hurt or let down by anyone. Or so he'd thought. Then Allison had blown his little delusion to hell. The instant the possibility of her having cancer had entered his brain he'd realized that he'd been fooling himself. At some point he was going to lose her. Whether it was to another job, or to another man, or to something horribly random and out of his control, he was going to lose her. And it was going to be painful even if he'd never really had her to begin with.
And that just sucked.
An hour after he'd disappeared House walked into his office to find all three of his protégées working on charts from their clinic duties which was curious because Dr. Cameron had been let out of her clinic hours for the past two days. Then he realized that she was finishing up his charts and he couldn't resist making a crack.
"Cameron, if you are trying to become the teacher's pet I have all of last month's charts hidden in my bottom desk drawer," he told her.
Allison simply raised her head and glared at him.
"Oh, fine! How about we all ditch the paperwork and go out to celebrate Cameron's little scam to get out of clinic duty," House suggested.
Luckily, the target of the barb realized just in time that this was House's way of saying he was glad she was all right,
"Sounds good to me. I've been too nervous over the last couple of days to eat. Now I'm starving!" she simply replied.
House wondered if anyone but him picked up on the silent message that she had been scared. Probably not as it was a classic House type move, admitting a weakness without making a true confession.
As it turned out Wilson and Cuddy joined the team and the six of them had a nice evening even by House's standards. In the group setting he could relax a bit and watch Cameron without being obvious. Or so he thought. Wilson was definitely on to him, but then he'd been watching closely for any signs that his friend was about to crack and admit he had feelings for Allison. And boy was he seeing cracks. House could barely keep his eyes off the woman and when he did look away he would have a slightly dazed look in his eyes as if he was trying to figure out what hit him.
Allison wasn't oblivious either. The only question in her mind was how to keep House from retreating back into his well fortified shell. And so as the evening went on she made sure that she was always sitting directly next to him or across from him so that he was forced to either occasionally brush up against her or be looking right at her. She was so terribly glad she had picked out the white blouse that hugged her curves and had just a slightly deeper plunging neckline than most of her tops did. She'd unconsciously needed the boost to her morale that morning when she put it on. Who knew that a scant ten hours later she'd be using it to remind the very stubborn man she worked for what he was missing out on.
Whether it was his newfound realizations that afternoon or Allison's closeness that evening, something kept House from letting his self defense mechanisms kick in that evening. As they were all piling into their cars in the parking lot he put out a hand to restrain Allison.
He looked around a bit nervously and then commented, "We should do this again."
"What? Celebrate my narrow escape from a horrible disease?" Allison teased.
House rolled his eyes but secretly applauded her quick comeback. "Are you planning on coming down with the symptoms of something else soon? No, I was thinking more along the lines of just enjoying dinner out."
"Ah! Well, it was a fun evening. I'm sure we could talk everyone into doing it again," Allison agreed, knowing perfectly well that he'd been suggesting something else.
"I'm sure they would, but let's forget to invite them next time," House insisted.
"You mean just you and I, together, out for dinner? Like on a date?" she asked with a twinkle in her eyes. "Because if my memory serves me correctly we do much better on non-dates than on the real thing."
"Fine, let's go out on a non-date then. Friday night? I'll pick you up at 7:00," Greg told her. "Nothing fancy, Someplace casual. After all it's not a real date."
"All right, "Allison agreed.
At this point she'd be happy for an evening at McDonald's as long as House was willing to make that first step.