In so many ways it was one of life's great tragedies, getting no sleep and having absolutely no fun. Upon seeing her dozing at her desk around mid-morning her personal assistant was kind enough to wake her with a particularly pungent cup of coffee.

"Big night Doctor Cuddy?" He grinned placing the cup down on her desk just to the right of the stack of billing notices she was using as a pillow.

"Uh." Cuddy stirred, regarding her PA groggily. The scent of freshly roasted coffee beans drifted into her personal space. "Mmm." Another sound; not yet capable of speech she slowly reached for the cup, purposefully inhaling its contents. "Thankyou so much…" She murmured, gingerly sipping the scalding beverage.

"So," Her PA raised his eyebrows expectantly. "Who's the lucky guy?"

"Sorry, what?" Cuddy frowned at him, somewhat aghast.

"Oh, I'm sorry." The PA was politely apologetic. "It's just that you've come in looking totally exhausted every morning for the last week or so. I just figured that you'd met someone…"

"Hmpf!" Cuddy stifled a laugh, desperately trying not to shoot coffee out of her nose. "I wish." She composed herself. "But thanks for the coffee."

"Hey, it's my job." He smiled at her sweetly. "Did you need anything else?"

"Yes," Cuddy shifted, sitting up straight, steel returning to her gaze. "I know this isn't part of your job description, but could you take that suit there to the dry cleaners?" She gestured toward the frosted pink suit that was neatly laid out on the couch to his right. "I'll buy you lunch?"

"Sure." The PA gathered up the suit from the couch. "And you don't have to buy me lunch Doctor Cuddy."

Cuddy watched him stride from her office; he was a good kid, cute too. She sighed, slumping down into her chair. The last week had been nothing short of hellish. A group of investors were scheduled to visit the hospital in two days time. Under ordinary circumstances this would have been a perfectly welcome occurrence, but this particular group of investors had 'requested' (more a demand from the member of the consortium that happened to be an accountant) she provide a detailed and accurate summary of current hospital operations and some recent financials. The latter was easily solved by way of a quick phone call to accounting, but the former was more time consuming. Cuddy had quite literally spent the last week sifting over memos and contacting various department heads regarding patient statistics, research and a host of other topics that the consortium of potential investors had earmarked for discussion. The only time she had left the hospital in the last eight days involved a quick sojourn around the corner to a budget department store to purchase some clean underwear, as she didn't have the time to drive home.

Today would be no different. She would spend office hours ploughing through research proposals and contacting department heads in the hope of ensuring that there were no nasty surprises in store for her when she met with the investors on Friday. To this point she had discovered that the IVF clinic had been expensing champagne purchased for celebrating successful pregnancies under 'Review Consultation Expenses' and were storing it in their sample fridges inside boxes marked 'biohazard' to deter theft. The Obstetrics Department had listed a golf day as a 'Symposium on new Delivery Techniques,' and House. Well, House had ordered an x-ray of the left upper thigh of every patient in the psych ward under the pretence that he was attempting to ascertain whether the statement, 'the hip bone's connected to the thigh bone' held true over a broad sample. Not exactly the sort of research that would impress a consortium of potential investors. Gifted musician or not, the sight of House singing 'Dem Bones' didn't really constitute a compelling case for additional funding for the Department of Diagnostic Medicine.

The scalding water did little to soothe her aching body or quell the pounding inside her skull as she stood beneath the shower in the female staff locker room. Cuddy turned to face the torrent of water, closing her eyes as she shifted her face into the path of the shower. She rolled her head from side to side in the hope of shocking herself back to full consciousness. Bracing both her palms and forearms flat against the tiles below the shower head, she leant forward; the heat of the water beating against the back of her neck in stark contrast to the chill of the tiles against her skin. Sighing, she stood up, quickly shifting her arms into the path of the shower before shutting the water off. She paused momentarily, relishing the sensation as her glowing skin cooled rapidly in the chill air of the locker room. Cuddy reached for her towel and began to slowly dry herself before pulling on a set of loose surgical scrubs and wandering back to her office.

Gripping one final cup of coffee tightly, Cuddy settled down on the couch in her office with a particularly lengthy research proposal from the Haematology Department and began to read, feet tucked up beneath her. She rationalised that as soon as she had appeased the consortium of investors she'd take a few days off and treat herself to something, she had no idea what though. It occurred to her that what she wanted at that moment more than anything was simply someone to lavish attention on her poor, tired body. However, people weren't exactly queuing up to fill that position. Cuddy closed her eyes; she could almost feel strong fingers deftly seeking out the tender spots down the length of her aching back. She placed her coffee on the floor; sensory hallucinations were an unfamiliar yet welcome aspect of sleep deprivation. With a degree of reluctance, she slumped down onto the couch, allowing her mind to wander as she lapsed into unconsciousness.

Cuddy blinked; once, twice, clearing the sleep from her eyes. He was there, looming above her, filling almost her entire field of vision.

"When was the last time you slept in your own bed?" He asked gently, blue eyes dark with concern.

"Am I dreaming?" Cuddy whispered, gazing up at him. She slowly lifted a hand up to touch his cheek, fingers lightly drifting over three or more day's worth of stubble.

"I don't know." He mused, pressing his cheek to her hand. "What happens in your dream?" She ran her thumb across the seal of his lips.

"It's been so long," She sighed as he lightly kissed the pad of her thumb. "I'm not sure, but I think it ends with you inside me."

"Ooo." He tilted his head, lightly nipping at the fleshy underside of her thumb. "That sort of dream is it?"

"God I hope so." Cuddy shifted her hand away from his mouth, grabbing him roughly by the collar of his shirt.

"I like this side of you." He purred, lips brushing hers as he spoke. "I'm also liking the fact you 86ed the bra when you put on these scrubs. Generally you're not wearing scrubs in my dreams though…"

"Hey." Cuddy growled in a mock scold. "This is my dream. Could you stop teasing and just get on with it?"

"Okay, okay…" He rolled his eyes in faux-exasperation; thumb circling a hard nipple through the thin green crepe of her scrubs. He leant down, gently nibbling at her lips in a frustratingly non-committal tease.

"Come here, dammit." Cuddy growled, gripping the lapels of his jacket and pulling him forcefully toward her. He gently lowered himself down on top of her, shifting his weight until he was stretched out comfortably, hips resting between her thighs. He opened his mouth against hers, tongue skating across her lips, daring her to respond, and she did. Lips parting beneath his, she dragged him into an intensely deep kiss, hands hastily tearing at his clothing, pushing his jacket from his shoulders and flinging it away as he shrugged it off. She bit his bottom lip, teeth piercing skin. His eyes flicked open in utter astonishment; with the knowledge she had his undivided attention, Cuddy slipped her hands into the gap between the middle buttons on his shirt and pulled sharply, buttons popping and material tearing as she sought out his flesh.

"Oh, so you wanna play?" He growled against her ear as her hands slid up underneath his t-shirt.

"Yeah." Cuddy bit his ear, fingernails lightly scraping against the skin on his back. He sat up, kneeling between her thighs as he regarded her momentarily before gripping either side of the v-neck of her scrubs, fists clenched beneath her chin. Flashing her a quick grin, he tore the scrubs open in a single movement.

"Don't make em like they used to." He raised an eyebrow at her, taking in the lean lines of her torso. He grabbed the waistband of her pants and gave another sharp tug, satisfaction permeating his expression as the material tore beneath him. "No panties. Are you sure this isn't my dream?"

"Less talking, more fucking." Cuddy growled at him, pulling him back down onto her.

"You really want this over and done with that fast?" He asked, gently kissing his way down the side of her neck.

"Yes." Cuddy stifled a moan as he found a particularly sensitive spot. "Just get me off then go and do your clinic hours, or watch your soap or something." He began to nip and suck at a nipple, Cuddy's hands raked through his hair and she found herself shivering at the sheer pleasure of the sensation.

"So you don't want me to keep doing this then?" His tongue flicked across her nipple, she held his head firmly in place.

"No. I mean yeah." Cuddy groaned as he sucked just marginally harder before pulling away to blow cold air over her nipple. She gasped. "Just fuck me."

"You sure?" He asked, gently rocking his hips into hers. "Because I can think of a few other places I'd like to kiss you…" Cuddy reached down between them to unzip his trousers, pushing them along with his boxers down over his ass. She gripped his cock firmly.

"Just get on with it."

"Okay." He pushed into her. Cuddy gasped, shifting beneath him as she adjusted to his size. Slowly he began to move above her, intent on calming her down somewhat with his long smooth strokes. Cuddy bucked her hips against him impatiently, he responded with a quick swivel of his, momentarily changing his angle in a manner that left her gasping. He continued at the same tortuous pace, adding the occasional swivel that left her begging for release until he felt nails cutting into his back.

"Fuck me harder!" A single hoarse demand, who was he to refuse? He drove into her mercilessly, his wordless grunts in symphony with her equally desperate moaning until they both came tangled in a sweaty heap of torn clothing and shouted obscenities.

Cuddy blinked, she could hear crunching. Propping herself up on one elbow she caught sight of House seated a few metres from where she lay sprawled on the couch, barbeque chips snapping between his molars.

"How long have you been here?" She asked blearily.

"Oh, long enough." He grinned wickedly, licking his fingers before diving into the packet for another chip.

"No no no no. Shit." Cuddy mumbled, blinking the sleep from her eyes in an attempt to avoid his gaze.

"I feel like I should tip you or something after that. I'm packing more wood here than just the cane." House nodded toward his crotch, continuing to crunch as he spoke. "So who's the lucky guy?" Cuddy glared at him. "Or girl? Actually, that's sooo much hotter…"

"Don't you have a soap to watch, or patients to offend or something?" Cuddy growled, rubbing her neck as she sat up.

"Avoidance…" House ceased to crunch momentarily, eyes flickering skyward in a second of contemplation. "Hang on…" A wild grin cut across his features. "Was I the guest star in your sex dream?"

"What?" Cuddy stared at him, embarrassment combining with shock and anger. "Don't flatter yourself."

"You came too, didn't you?" House licked his fingers suggestively. "Man I'm good."

"Don't be ridiculous." Cuddy shook her head dismissively.

"Oh, your mouth says no, but your nipples say yes." House began to crunch again. Cuddy wrapped her arms around her chest in self-conscious shock, eyes wild with anger.

"Chip?" House extended the bag in her direction.

"Out!" Cuddy snarled.

"Okay," House stood, somewhat reluctantly. He dropped the bag of chips down onto Cuddy's desk and fished inside his jacket for his wallet, extracting a $20 note before limping over to where Cuddy sat on the couch, arms still wrapped tight around her chest. He held the note in front of her face, slowly folding it lengthways. House leant down, pressing a single rough, greasy barbeque kiss against her lips whilst simultaneously jamming the $20 into the waistband of her scrubs.

"Thanks for the show." House grinned, eyebrows bouncing suggestively as he grabbed his chips and ambled out.