Dr. Gregory House did not wake up in a good mood. Not surprising, he rarely does, but this morning was particularly nasty. Groping for his cane, he stumbled out of bed to the sound of his beeper going wildly fighting for his attention as he shook the sleep away. Carefully weighing the pros and cons of actually responding, he picked up the phone.
"House, you've got to get in here as soon as possible" We've got a real situation"
"Ahh, Cuddy, good morning to you, too. You'd better have a damn good reason for waking me up"
"House it is imperative you get to the hospital ASAP" "Good of you to explain in such explicit detail"
Click. The line went dead. Weird. Yes that is not like her at all. Deciding very quickly, he dressed and found himself pulling out of the driveway into the early morning rain.
The hospital corridor is silent, this very early morning. The sun will not rise for hours yet, still drifting in space somewhere below horizon. One standing in the dark hallway might have been able to sense the dark magnetism that slowly crept inside, maybe through the doors or windows, maybe on the air. A psychic shadow rippled through the halls with an intensity so strong it was impossible to miss. Such is the feeling tonight.
Within moments the tranquil scene turns to chaos and fear. A young life, frail and weak, is dying. Nurses, doctors, IV lines, a stretcher. Shouted commands fill the air while rushing through the livid hallway. The patient was six, and fading fast. His laboured breathing was rattling in his chest as increments of time increased between every beat of his heart.
Dr. Robert Chase provided the voice of reason that saved the boy, albeit temporarily. He now resided silently over the tube-laden child, his own stomach aching, and perplexed. "There are too many factors here; I just don't know what's wrong" he said to Dr. Lisa Cuddy, standing next to him.
"Let's look at the facts…cardiac arrest at six. And he has no other symptoms?"
"Everything seems to be in order" "
"You must have missed something"
A dark look. "That much is obvious".
"You've been spending to much time with House"
Chase ignored the comment and turned back to the patient. The angina had been calmed with a defibulator, but was truly a band aid solution to the real problem. The weakened boy was extremely unstable; he could go at any moment.
"Speak of the devil, did you call him?" Chase had accidentally made a deadly misdiagnosis in his career and lacked the confidence without his superior, Dr. House, looming over his shoulder. Though mildly resentful, House had been more than willing to watch him like a hawk recently. Chase felt little guilt in this respect. House was resentful about a lot of things.
"I called him this morning; I had been on the phone when you rushed in. I had told him to get his ass in here this morning, but I didn't have time for his stupid games. I hung up on him, actually. That relapse scared me Chase. We could have lost him" Chase had been staring at a spot at the wall.
"Don't rule that out. Maybe you should call again. He's still not here; it's not beyond him to act pissy and take his time"
"No, I'm sure His Majesty will arrive soon enough. So I can't stand him, he knows how to do his job" A crash. Obscenity. Hasty apologies from young interns, who probably had five years taken off their lives from the tongue-lashing going on in the hallway.
"Mmmm, think they knocked the cane?" Cuddy asked nonchalantly.
"Speak of the devil…" Chase continued from his earlier comment, finishing the adage: "and he will appear!."