This is the second fic I wrote for the HWfest on Livejournal.

Hwfest fic challenge prompt - 58. Wilson becomes abruptly clingy, House wants to know why.


Room For One More

"You didn't really say that to her, did you?" Wilson said with a laugh.

House smirked. "You'd better believe I did."

Wilson laughed again and looked around. He and House were standing in front of the hospital. The sun was warm and the day beautiful. They were both dressed casually and House was grinning at him and tapping his cane lightly against the ground.

Wilson shook his head as he smiled. "She's going to kill you one of these days."

"Nah," House said dismissively. "She likes me, remember?"

"That doesn't mean she won't kill you," Wilson said with amusement. "It just means she'll be sorry after it's over."

House's reply was cut off by the arrival of a large bus in a cloud of dust and exhaust fumes. The bus looked like it was almost full and Wilson frowned as the first hints of unease trickled through him. The doors to the bus creaked open and the unease bloomed in to fully-fledged discomfort. This confused him since he couldn't find any particular reason why he felt this way. Everything looked perfectly normal.

The bus driver leaned towards them and Wilson almost flinched, again for no particular reason that he could put his finger on. The driver looked also perfectly normal as he looked down at them.

"Room for one more, guys," the driver said with a grin and jerk of his thumb to the interior of the bus.

House started to limp forward and Wilson caught his arm.

"Uh, maybe we should wait for the next one," he said nervously.

House gave him a puzzled look. "I'm sure there's room for both of us. Don't be a wuss."

"I…I'm not," Wilson replied, aiming for indignation and missing it entirely.

"Then come on," House said with the first hints of irritation as he pulled his arm free and hauled himself onto the bus.

Wilson stood on the sidewalk and stared irresolutely at the bus.

The driver adjusted his baseball cap and glanced at the rear of the bus before looking down at Wilson again. "Room for one more," he repeated.

Wilson could see House hobbling along the aisle but he just couldn't seem to make himself move. Finally he shook his head and the bus driver shrugged and pulled the lever to close the doors. As Wilson stood frozen on the sidewalk, the bus pulled away with a screech and a groan and headed for the road. Wilson watched it dumbly as it stopped for a moment at the entrance to the car park then it pulled out onto the road.

Where it was immediately struck by a large semi-trailer…

Wilson shot upright on the sofa with a strangled gasp, the blankets falling down to pool around his waist. He looked around wildly, sweat coating his face and making his clothes stick to his body. In the dim light he saw the piano and general clutter that marked House's apartment and he slumped back down into his makeshift bed with relief.

"Fuck," he muttered as he wiped the sweat from his face.

He pushed the blankets away and slowly got to his feet. He wavered for a moment then he quietly shuffled over to House's bedroom and stood in the doorway. House was lying sprawled on his back, his face turned away from the door and the covers bunched at his waist. In the moonlight that flooded through the open window, Wilson could see the cane propped against the bedside table and the pill bottle standing on top of the table.

Wilson shivered as he stood there, either in reaction to the dream or because of the sweat that was slowly drying. That dream had been so realistic; he hadn't even realised it was one until he'd woken up.

"You planning on standing there all night?" House said, his voice gravelly with sleep.

Wilson jumped and swore. "Dammit, House, you scared the crap out of me," he gasped.

House turned his head and shifted slightly on the bed. "Good. Why were you watching me?"

"Just debating whether short-sheeting your bed would be worth it," Wilson said a little lamely and hoping House wouldn't pick up on it. There were many reasons why he didn't want House questioning the fact he was watching him and the dream he'd just had was the least of them.

House snorted with sleepy amusement. "Just try it and see."

Wilson managed to dredge up a weak smile. "Then again, maybe not."

He forced himself to move and padded through the room to the bathroom. He paused in the doorway and looked over at House, who was still watching him through sleepy, half-lidded eyes.

"Go back to sleep," he said quietly.

House grunted and shifted onto his side. Wilson stared at him for a moment longer then slipped into the bathroom, turning on the light after he'd closed the door. He splashed some water onto his face and stared into the mirror.

"It was a dream," he said firmly to his reflection. "Just a dream. It didn't mean anything so just stop it. You're not twelve and scared of the bogeyman anymore."

He grabbed a towel and dried his face. He hung the towel back up again then turned off the light before opening the door. He paused in the doorway until his eyes adjusted to the darkness. Once that had happened he glanced over at the bed and saw that House was curled on his side, apparently asleep again. He sighed softly and padded back out into the living room, lying back down on the sofa. He stared at the ceiling for a long time before sleep claimed him again.

The next morning he was able to more or less shrug off the dream in the light of day. But not entirely. A faint unease seemed to linger and he found himself constantly checking on House both at home and when they were at the hospital. He tried to make it seem normal but after the third time when he oh-so-casually wandered into Diagnostic Medicine, House was definitely starting to get suspicious. Wilson was surprised when House said nothing about it and he winced as he wondered what was going to happen when he got home that night.

He managed to stay out of Diagnostic Medicine for the rest of the day though if he wandered past the office and conference room more than he usually did, nobody seemed to remark upon it. He greeted House's arrival in his office just after five that evening with a certain amount of relief, he'd been nearly useless today and had been thankful that he'd been able to restrict himself to paperwork, and quickly packed up his things. The ride home was quiet and Wilson could almost feel House shooting him curious glances from time to time.

"Have I done something wrong?" House finally asked when they had settled on the sofa after dinner.

"Not that I know of," Wilson replied with surprise. "Why? Guilty conscience?"

House snorted. "Hardly. You've been…lingering around for most of the day. Just thought Cuddy was pissed at me and sent you to keep an eye on me."

"No, I only do that when you're detoxing," Wilson said as casually as he could. "Otherwise I rely on Cameron letting me know if you look you're about to leap off the deep end."

House scowled. "Might have known she tattles to you. Still, better that than tattling to Cuddy."

"Well, she does that too but only when you're about to do something that could get you arrested," Wilson replied, hoping to steer the conversation away from him. "Or cost the hospital obscene amounts of money."

"When was the last time I did that?" House complained.

"Vogler," Wilson said flatly.

"Hey, she could have kept the money," House replied. "I could have found a job somewhere else. It's not like I don't get job offers from other hospitals."

"Ah, those would be the ones that don't know you and your charming personality," Wilson said dryly.

"Since when did it become pick on the cripple day?" House said with amusement.

"Well, it was pick on Wilson day yesterday so that makes it your turn today," Wilson countered.

"Ah, so that's how it works," House said as he grabbed the remote.

Wilson relaxed at that point, having actually been successful for once in distracting House, and the conversation settled into their usual slightly abusive but rather funny banter until House decided to call it a night. Wilson settled into his temporary bed on the sofa and stared at the ceiling for a long time before falling asleep.


"You didn't really say that to her, did you?" Wilson said with a laugh.

House smirked. "You'd better believe I did."

Wilson laughed again and looked around. He and House were standing in front of the hospital. The sun was warm and the day beautiful. They were both dressed casually and House was grinning at him and tapping his cane lightly against the ground.

Wilson shook his head as he smiled. "She's going to kill you one of these days."

"Nah," House said dismissively. "She likes me, remember?"

"That doesn't mean she won't kill you," Wilson said with amusement. "It just means she'll be sorry after it's over."

House's reply was cut off by the arrival of a large bus in a cloud of dust and exhaust fumes. The bus looked like it was almost full and Wilson frowned as the first hints of unease and an odd sense of déjà vu trickled through him. The doors to the bus creaked open and the unease bloomed in to fully-fledged discomfort. This confused him since he couldn't find any particular reason why he felt this way. Everything looked perfectly normal.

The bus driver leaned towards them and Wilson almost flinched, again for no particular reason that he could put his finger on. The driver looked also perfectly normal as he looked down at them.

"Room for one more, guys," the driver said with a grin and jerk of his thumb to the interior of the bus.

House started to limp forward and Wilson caught his arm.

"Uh, maybe we should wait for the next one," he said nervously.

House gave him a puzzled look. "I'm sure there's room for both of us. Don't be a wuss."

"I…I'm not," Wilson replied, aiming for indignation and missing it entirely. "I just really think we should wait for the next one."

"We'll be late if we do that," House said with the first hints of irritation as he pulled his arm free and hauled himself onto the bus.

Wilson stood on the sidewalk and stared irresolutely at the bus; he had the strangest feeling he'd done this before.

The driver adjusted his baseball cap and glanced at the rear of the bus before looking down at Wilson again. "Room for one more," he repeated.

Wilson could see House hobbling along the aisle but he just couldn't seem to make himself move. Finally he shook his head and the bus driver shrugged and pulled the lever to close the doors. As Wilson stood frozen on the sidewalk, the bus pulled away with a screech and a groan and headed for the road. Wilson watched it dumbly as it stopped for a moment at the entrance to the car park then it pulled out onto the road.

Where it was immediately struck by a large semi-trailer…

Wilson woke with a start so wild that he fell off the sofa with a thud. He thrashed his way out of the blankets that were wrapped around his legs and staggered upright, finally backing into the wall with a thump and a wince. He scrubbed his face with both hands, his breath coming in shuddering gasps and covered in sweat.

"Holy shit," he breathed as he desperately tried to calm himself down before he woke House.

He stumbled away from the wall and over to the doorway to House's bedroom, barely managing to stop himself before he flung himself onto the bed. He could see House lying there, curled up on his side tonight and sleeping peacefully for once. He took a deep breath and walked over to the bed, staring down at his friend and resisting the urge to touch him, something that took more self-control than he'd expected. He jerked away from the bed and into the bathroom where he once again closed the door before turning on the light.

He leaned against the basin and stared at his reflection in the mirror. He looked wild-eyed and distinctly ruffled, his hair sweat-soaked and dark circles starting to form under his eyes.

"What the hell is going on?" he whispered to his reflection.

He turned on the tap and threw cold water onto his face. He turned off the tap with a wrench and grabbed a towel, scrubbing his face as though that would wipe the memory of the dream away. He hung up the towel and stared at his reflection in the mirror again for a long moment before turning the light off and opening the door.

He was halfway across the bedroom when the voice spoke.

"You're not going to make a habit of this, are you?"

Wilson started and whipped around to find House sitting on the edge of the bed, staring at him in the dim light coming in from outside the open window.

"Jesus, House, you scared the crap out of me!" he yelped.

"You didn't answer my question," House said sourly.

Wilson took a deep breath and let it out slowly. "I don't plan on it. I'm sorry I woke you."

House grunted as he reached for his cane and got to his feet. "Don't do it again," he snapped.

Wilson watched as House limped into the bathroom, his steps slow and careful in the dark. Once the door closed, he hurried back out into the living room and remade his bed on the sofa. As he climbed back into it, he heard the sound of the toilet flushing and running water then the bathroom door opened again. He shifted under the blankets as he listened to House limp back to his bed and climb in again. And though he didn't know it, both he and House spent most of the rest of the night staring at their respective ceilings.

The next morning the faint unease he'd felt the previous day had strengthened and he was struggling to peel himself away from House's side. Something that, considering the irritated looks he was getting from the older man, was not going down all that well. It was so bad that once they got to the hospital he couldn't even make himself go to his own office but instead followed House to his. He forestalled any immediate questions by walking out into the conference room and making them both coffee, giving quiet greetings to the three doctors sitting around the table.

He returned to House's office and placed the older man's cup of coffee on the desk then sat down in his usual chair. He ignored the fact that House was eyeing him like he was an intriguing puzzle as best as he could and sipped at his own cup.

"You know it's going to be a little hard to treat all those sick, bald kids if you spend all your time in here," House said archly.

"We're early," Wilson replied mildly. "I've got time."

"Hmm," House said, still eyeing him closely. "You look like crap."

"Oh, stop it, House. Your charm is overwhelming me," Wilson said dryly then he continued in a more normal tone of voice. "Your sofa isn't the most comfortable piece of furniture I've ever met."

"And you've just figured this out in the last two nights?" House asked sharply.

"I thought I'd built up a tolerance," Wilson said with as much idleness as he could manage. "Guess I was wrong. Look, I'm sorry for waking you. I don't know why I've been waking up in the middle of the night."

"Wow, that's the most unconvincing lie you've ever tried on me," House said, leaning back in his chair. "Want to try again?"

"Nope," Wilson replied as he continued sipping his coffee.

"Is it something to do with Julie?" House asked.

"Why, Dr House, you've come to a diagnosis," Wilson drawled.

House settled back with a look that combination tentative satisfaction and slight suspicion. Wilson gave an inward sigh of relief and got to his feet.

"I'd better go," he said casually.

However when he got to the door, he hesitated and almost couldn't force himself to walk through. He finally managed to make himself walk out but he refused to look back. He knew House would have seen that hesitation and he didn't want to see what expression the other man had on his face.

When Wilson got to his office he found himself unable to settle down and work. He felt uneasy and increasingly restless now that House was out of sight even though intellectually he knew that House was just next door and wasn't likely to go climbing onto any strange buses. He tried to concentrate on his paperwork with a modicum of success though he continued to feel uneasy. Finally after about an hour of work, his nerves couldn't take any more. He picked up a couple of files and with as much casualness as he could muster he wandered down the corridor past House's office.

As he did he glanced in and saw that House wasn't in his office but was in fact in the conference room leaning on the whiteboard as he upbraided his ducklings. He seemed to realise someone was watching him and he looked out into the corridor, his expression becoming one of intrigued curiosity. He'd obviously faltered in what he was saying as the three young doctors turned around to see what had drawn their boss' attention. Wilson flushed under this added regard and hurried onwards, not really knowing where he was going but wanting to try and gather his composure again.

He rounded a corner in the corridor and stopped, leaning against the wall and running his free hand down his face.

"You know, you're starting to make me a little paranoid."

Wilson looked around and saw House standing in front of him. The other man had obviously followed him.

"You're always paranoid," Wilson retorted weakly.

"What have I done?" House demanded.

"Nothing," Wilson said sharply.

House gave him a sharp look. "Seriously, what the hell have I done that Cuddy's got you gluing yourself to me?"

"Nothing!" Wilson half-yelled. "Cuddy hasn't asked me to do anything! Just leave it alone!"

With that Wilson turned on his heel and stalked down the corridor towards his office. Once he got there he slammed the door shut and sat down at his desk and buried his face in his hands. He took several deep, rather frustrated, breaths then slumped back into his chair. He was half-expecting House to come barging in, demanding answers, since his reaction had been…uncharacteristic to say the least. He had no idea why those dreams were lingering in the way they were and making him want to cling so close to House.

He waited for several minutes but when House didn't make an appearance, he relaxed as much as he could. He took a deep breath and picked up the files for the patients he actually did need to see today. He ventured out of his office and before he could stop himself he turned and walked over to House's office. The three young doctors were nowhere to be seen but House was sitting behind his desk, repeatedly tossing his ball up into the air. He caught sight of Wilson and glanced at him before catching the ball. Wilson stared back for a moment then he turned with a wrench and walked away, forcibly reminding himself he had patients to take care of.

All throughout the day he found himself walking over to look into House's office and each time he did so, House would return his look with a bland expression. He retreated to his office late in the day and sat behind his desk, staring down at the blotter, until House limped in.

"Coming?" the older man said brusquely.

Wilson sighed. "Yeah."

They left the hospital in silence and that silence stretched throughout the entire trip home. Once they got inside, House turned and Wilson braced himself for what he was sure was going to be incessant questioning.

"Chinese?" House asked and it took a moment for Wilson to realise what he'd been asked.

"Uh, yeah," Wilson replied as he pulled his jacket off and hung it up.

House limped over to the phone and ordered then they both sat down on the sofa. Wilson tensed up again when House sat next to him and once again he waited for the inevitable questioning. But once again it didn't come. House merely picked up the remote control and turned on the TV, flipping through the channels until he found a rerun of the O.C. The silence continued until the deliveryman arrived and House nudged Wilson.

"You're paying," he said.

Wilson rolled his eyes but got up anyway and went to the door, paying the man and taking the food. He ducked into the kitchen to grab some forks then returned to the living room. As they began to eat, House made a couple of relatively scandalous comments regarding the action on the television and Wilson found himself almost inadvertently drawn into conversation.

Somehow he managed to get through the entire evening without House returning to what had happened that afternoon though he knew that was solely due to House leaving the subject alone for reasons Wilson didn't understand but subtly appreciated. Finally House got to his feet and announced he was going to bed. Wilson watched as the older man limped into the bedroom then he sighed and got ready for bed himself.


"You didn't really say that to her, did you?" Wilson said with a laugh.

House smirked. "You'd better believe I did."

Wilson laughed again and looked around. He and House were standing in front of the hospital. The sun was warm and the day beautiful. They were both dressed casually and House was grinning at him and tapping his cane lightly against the ground. Wilson felt an odd sense of familiarity at these events but he quickly shrugged it off, the day was too nice and the company too good for dwelling on any oddities.

Wilson shook his head as he smiled. "She's going to kill you one of these days."

"Nah," House said dismissively. "She likes me, remember?"

"That doesn't mean she won't kill you," Wilson said with amusement. "It just means she'll be sorry after it's over."

House's reply was cut off by the arrival of a large bus in a cloud of dust and exhaust fumes. The bus looked like it was almost full and Wilson frowned as the first hints of unease and an odd sense of déjà vu trickled through him. The doors to the bus creaked open and the unease bloomed in to fully-fledged discomfort. This confused him since he couldn't find any particular reason why he felt this way. Everything looked perfectly normal.

The bus driver leaned towards them and Wilson almost flinched, again for no particular reason that he could put his finger on. The driver looked also perfectly normal as he looked down at them.

"Room for one more, guys," the driver said with a grin and jerk of his thumb to the interior of the bus.

House started to limp forward and Wilson caught his arm.

"Uh, maybe we should wait for the next one," he said nervously.

House gave him a puzzled look. "I'm sure there's room for both of us. Don't be a wuss."

"I…I'm not," Wilson replied, aiming for indignation and missing it entirely. "I just really think we should wait for the next one."

"We'll be late if we do that," House said with the first hints of irritation as he pulled his arm free and hauled himself onto the bus.

Wilson stood on the sidewalk and stared irresolutely at the bus; he had the strangest feeling he'd done this before.

The driver adjusted his baseball cap and glanced at the rear of the bus before looking down at Wilson again. "Room for one more," he repeated.

Wilson could see House hobbling along the aisle but he just couldn't seem to make himself move. Finally he shook his head and the bus driver shrugged and pulled the lever to close the doors. As Wilson stood frozen on the sidewalk, the bus pulled away with a screech and a groan and headed for the road. Wilson watched it dumbly as it stopped for a moment at the entrance to the car park then it pulled out onto the road.

Where it was immediately struck by a large semi-trailer…

Wilson jerked awake with a strangled yell and scrambled away from the sofa, stumbling over the blankets that had become tangled around his legs. He nearly fell over the coffee table then stumbled into the piano, a jangle of notes sounding through the room as he put one hand down to catch himself. He scrunched his eyes closed as he took several gasping breaths, trying to calm himself.

"Alright, now you really are going to tell me what's going on."

At House's flat comment, Wilson tore himself away from the piano and charged across the room, stumbling over his discarded blankets. He shoved House into the wall, ignoring the sound of the cane clattering to the floor and House's hands coming up to grab at him in surprise. He also ignored the startled look on House's face as he slammed his lips onto his friend's, the kiss hard and desperate. For several long moments, House was stiff and tense beneath his mouth and hands then the older man's hands suddenly tightened their grip on his shirt and he moaned into the kiss, returning it with a desperation at least the equal of Wilson's.

Wilson scrabbled at House's t-shirt, almost ripping it in his desperation to pull it off. He felt more than heard House's chuckle then his hands were being gripped tightly and House was pulling away from the kiss. Wilson made a noise of protest and tried to follow but was stopped by House's low, heated words.

"I'm all for continuing this," he said, his blue eyes intent. "But all things considered, my bed would be a better choice."

Wilson seemed to come back to himself with a sickening thud at these words and he ducked his head, suddenly aware of what he'd just done and fearing the consequences. He would have pulled away except House's grip on him was too tight.

"Jimmy, look at me," came House's quiet command.

Wilson's head felt like it weighed a thousand tons as he slowly looked up. When he met House's eyes, he gasped. He didn't know what he'd expected to see in them but the lust, desire and affection that was so obvious was the best possible result.

House smirked at the expression on his face. "What? You thought I didn't want this?"

"I…I…I don't think I ever thought about it," Wilson stammered. "Wait! You…do?"

House rolled his eyes and yanked one of Wilson hands down to his crotch where his erection was plain to feel through his pyjamas.

"What does this tell you, Dr Wilson?" he said with exasperation. "Now since I don't really do the whole standing-up-sex-against-the-wall thing anymore, I suggest we continue this in my bed."

Wilson had a feeling he should argue about this more but between the adrenalin rush caused by the dream and the almost equal adrenalin rush caused by House's enthusiastic response to his kiss, he wasn't capable of objecting. Instead he picked up House's cane and handed it to his friend before following him into the bedroom.


Wilson was half-asleep, partially draped over House. His lover was gently stroking his hair with one hand, the only sign that he too was still awake.

"So are you going to tell me what the hell is going on now?"

House's voice was a low rumble in Wilson's ear. He winced at the reminder of what had happened for the last three nights then sighed.

"Not sure I want to," he murmured. "You're going to think it's ridiculous."

House snorted. "It resulted in this. I don't give a damn how ridiculous it is, I just want to know." He paused and Wilson could almost feel his grin. "I'm curious."

"You're always curious," Wilson replied dryly. "It's what makes people want to strangle you sometimes."

"People are so inconsiderate," House said airily. "And stop trying to change the subject. What happened to you that led to us having hot sex?"

Wilson gave a small laugh. He was silent for several minutes then spoke, "I've been having these dreams. They start out pretty calmly. We're standing out the front of the hospital, just chatting about nothing in particular, and this bus pulls up. That's when I start feeling really uneasy for no readily apparent reason. The doors of the bus open and the driver leans over and says, 'Room for one more'. You go to get on but something stops me. I try to stop you but you just shake me off and get on anyway. The bus driver looks at me again and says, 'Room for one more' again. I just can't seem to move and then the driver shuts the door and drives away. Just as the bus pulls out onto the road, a semi-trailer slams into it, almost completely destroying it." He gave another small laugh. "Stupid, I know, but for some reason I just couldn't shake the…the…the uneasiness those dreams left with me. That's why I was…hanging around you a lot the last couple of days. I just…couldn't shake those dreams."

House was silent for a moment then he snorted. "Room for one more," he repeated quietly. "That's bizarre. I thought that was just a story."

"You mean that makes sense to you?" Wilson asked, propping himself up so that he could see House's face.

"Yeah," House replied as he shifted slightly so that they were both more comfortable. "It's an urban legend." He stopped and snickered. "Proves you really are a girl, Jimmy."

Wilson whacked him lightly on the chest. "Keep making remarks like that and I'll stage a wifely headache whenever you want sex."

"No, you wouldn't," House said smugly. "You'd miss out on sex too and you couldn't cope with that."

"Yeah, whatever," Wilson replied. "Tell me about this urban legend."

House snickered then continued, "Usual sort of thing. Young woman breaks her journey into the city and stays in a spooky house and during the night she wakes because she hears a noise. This is set in the olden days. She walks over to the window, looks out and sees a carriage, often it looks like an old style horse-drawn hearse, with a whole lot of people in it. The driver of the cart looks up, which freaks her out for no reason she can work out, and says to her, 'Room for one more, miss." She runs away from the window, convinces herself it was just a dream and eventually goes back to bed. The next morning she continues her trip and gets to the city. She ends up going shopping and this is around the time that elevators first came in. She walks up to the elevator, which is pretty full, and the attendant turns and says, 'Room for one more, miss.' The attendant is identical in appearance to the carriage driver. She screams and runs away. The attendant shuts the doors, the lift starts rising then suddenly it falls and everyone in it dies."

Wilson was silent as he considered that, then he snorted. "So why the hell did I dream about it? I've never heard of that urban legend before, so it can't be something from my subconscious."

House gave an odd sort of shrug. "What do I care?" he said dismissively. "The end result was good. That's all that matters."

Wilson settled down again, smiling when House wrapped his arms around him and pulled him close.

"Well, that's a point," he conceded. "But I'd still like to know why I've been having those dreams."

House took a deep breath then let it out slowly. "Just don't have one here," he said, his voice sounding relaxed and a touch sleepy. "From the looks of the one tonight, you wake up pretty sharply. You hit my leg, you'll regret it."

Wilson found himself feeling sleepy as well. "I would never do that," he murmured as he settled himself more comfortably before falling asleep.

When Wilson woke the next morning, his initial reaction was one of confusion. He was warm, comfortable and sleeping in a bed when he was sure he should be sleeping on a sofa. He was also sleeping curled around someone who definitely wasn't his wife…or rather soon-to-be ex-wife. After a few seconds, the memories of the previous night flooded back and he tensed and winced. He'd thrown himself at House rather indiscriminately in his dream-induced panic and in spite of the other man's subsequent actions, Wilson couldn't help but worry that he'd ruined everything.

"You think too much."

House's rumbling, sleep-hoarsened voice startled him and he jerked slightly, before calming as House's hand starting stroking his hair again.

"Jesus, House, don't do that," Wilson said once he'd calmed.

He heard House chuckle. "You woke up, remembered what had happened last night and started wondering if I was going to regret what happened and whether I was going to kick you out stark naked into the street. If I was pissed about what happened last night, do you really think I'd still be here?"

Wilson laughed wryly as he propped himself up so that he could look at House. "Good point. Panic isn't very logical."

Wilson very nearly didn't get that comment out. When he'd looked up at his lover, he'd been caught by the amused, relaxed, almost content expression on House's face, something he hadn't seen since the infarction. It modulated into a slightly more curious look as he watched then House gave him a nudge.

"Get up," the older man said amiably. "We're late."

Wilson frowned then shifted so that he could see the clock sitting on the bedside table. When he saw the time, he yelped and leapt out of bed, triggering a bout of laughter from House.

"It's eight o'clock!" Wilson said, horrified. "Why didn't you wake me earlier?"

House tucked one hand behind his head and eyed Wilson with a mix of amusement and affection.

"Because you looked like crap which isn't much of a surprise since you've been having weird nightmares for the last few nights. I figured you needed the sleep."

"House! I have an appointment…well, right now," Wilson objected while feeling more touched than he'd thought possible at House's words. If ever he'd wanted proof that House actually did care…

"Mason's taking it for you," House replied blandly.

Wilson stared at him, his mouth open, then he shut it with a snap as that sentence started to make sense to him.

"You called in?" he said carefully.

House sat up and shifted his bad leg around in a manner that told Wilson he'd already taken at least one Vicodin this morning.

"I called Cuddy," House said as he reached for his cane. "Said we had something to deal with and we'd be in by nine. Hope you appreciate this because I had to agree to two more clinic hours."

Wilson snorted as he headed for the bathroom with House following. "You're just going to palm them off on one of your ducklings anyway. Which one will it be this time? Cameron? Or Chase? Or will actually be able to get Foreman to fall for one of your ploys?"

"Cameron fell for it last time," House said with a smirk as he ran a hand over Wilson's arse. "I'll try Chase. He's such a good Catholic boy, always good for a bit of penance."

Wilson drew in a sharp breath and gave House a quick and entirely unconvincing glare. House gave him an unrepentant grin in response before reaching past him and turning on the shower.

"Get in," House said. "We don't want to be late."

Wilson gave an exasperated laugh but got into the shower. They managed to get through the rest of the process of showering and dressing without too much delay then House let him drive the two of them into the hospital. As they walked towards the lifts, Cuddy stood in the doorway of her office and gave them a long, searching look. Her eyes narrowed then widened and she turned away, though not quickly enough to hide the sudden smile that burst across her face.

"I think our secret's out, Jimmy," House said roguishly. "Probably has something to do with that strange mark on your neck."

Wilson sighed; he hadn't even realised House had left the hickey until he'd shaved that morning and House had been totally and utterly unapologetic about it.

By this stage they had reached the lifts and Wilson was just about to reply when the doors of the nearest lift opened. The lift was almost full and they were just about to walk in when a man near the front turned to face them.

"I think there's room for one more," he said with a cheerful smile. "Maybe even two."

Wilson paled and made a strangled noise. The man in the lift looked exactly liked to bus driver from his dream.

House gave him a curious look. "Wilson? Coming?"

Wilson shook his head before dragging his gaze away from the man in the lift and over to House. "I…no…he…" He let out a shuddering breath before managing, "Bus driver."

House frowned at him then looked over at the lift. His face cleared and he waved a hand at the man in the lift.

"Nah, we'll take the next one," he said with admirable casualness then he waved his cane amiably. "I'm not big on crowded lifts."

The man shrugged and pushed the door close button. "Suit yourselves," he said as the doors closed.

"Jesus, House," Wilson said weakly, catching at House's arm. "It's supposed to be a legend, not reality."

For his part, House just stared at the closed lift doors, a frown on his face. He then shifted his gaze up to the floor display, watching the numbers slowly ascend. Just after the number '2' lit up there was a grinding noise and they both gave a start. They both waited with a certain amount of morbid curiosity, sure that the last part of the urban legend was about to come true. But nothing happened.

They were both still standing there when one of the hospital's security guards came running over.

"Sorry, guys, there's a problem with one of these lifts," he said breathlessly.

"Yeah, we passed on getting in it," House said slowly then he pointed at the lift in front of them. "It's that one. We'll…take the ones on the other side of the hospital."

With that House grabbed Wilson's arm and all but dragged him away. He waited until they were well away from the lifts then found the first empty room and pushed Wilson inside before entering himself and locking the door.

"What the hell is going on?" Wilson said, his voice stunned and weak.

"I have no idea, " House replied, sounding baffled. "That guy really looked like the bus driver in your dream?"

"Spitting image," Wilson replied with a nod.

House stared at the floor for a long moment then he took a deep breath and let it out slowly. He gave a small laugh then shook his head.

"Well, I'll be damned," he said quietly.

"You're not…freaked out by this?" Wilson demanded.

"I didn't say that," House replied. "But hey, it got us both what we wanted and we didn't get stuck in a crowded lift where I would almost certainly have killed several people for being whiny idiots. I'm not sure how this is bad for us."

Wilson snorted as he slumped down into the chair in the room. "You have a point there."

"Of course I do," House replied. "And in a few months we'll look back on this, laugh nervously and change the subject."

That got a far more genuine laugh out of Wilson and he scrubbed his face with one hand. "I think you stole that from somewhere."

"Who cares?" House replied. "You okay?"

Wilson nodded and got to his feet. "Let's hope that was the end of it because if I keep having weird dreams that keep coming true, I'm going to go crazy."

"I'll keep you sane," House said as he grabbed Wilson's tie and pulled him into a kiss.

When they separated, Wilson smiled and reclaimed his tie. "That's not very reassuring," he said with a wry smile.

House shrugged. "It'll do for now. Let's go before Cuddy comes looking for us and makes me do even more clinic hours."

Wilson laughed as he slowly relaxed, the dreams and the uneasiness they'd engendered seeming to almost slip away.

"Heaven forbid you should actually have to work like the rest of us," he said dryly.

"I knew you'd see my point of view," House said cheerfully as he unlocked the door and they walked out. "I knew I was friends with you for a reason."

Wilson laughed, shaking his head at the grinning House and the two of them continued on their way.