Disclaimer: All characters belong to David Shore, et al. No copyright infringement is intended, so please don't sue me. I'm a poor college student who has no money anyway.
Chase had decided that there was a downside to having one night of unbelievable sex. Fantasizing about said one night stand always led to problematic situations at work. What made it worse was that Cameron had essentially promised that it was never going to happen again.
"You're doing it again," Foreman's voice chided through his reverie.
"What?" Chase asked, deciding that it would be best to play dumb.
"I think you're trying to burn her clothes off with your eyes," Foreman laughed, turning his attention back to the sample he was viewing through the microscope.
Chase looked from Foreman and back to Cameron who was on the other side of the lab and two layers of heavy glass.
"I'm not—I'm just—I wasn't thinking about—oh, bollocks," Chase protested weakly, throwing his hands up in frustration.
Chase looked back to his colleague, hoping that he would now spout off some eternal advice on how to woo Cameron into changing her mind.
"Just talk to her. Ask her to dinner; have a conversation about something other than autoimmune diseases," Foreman stated matter-of-factly.
"But I've asked her out before…"
"That was before you saw her naked," Foreman interrupted.
Chase thought about what Foreman had just told him; he had to admit that Foreman did have a point. Knowing Cameron, she had to feel some sense of obligation to him now that they'd had sex, regardless of how noncommittal it was, and it was time that he used that to his advantage.
Chase was doing extra rounds in the NICU when Cameron walked up to him and irritably threw a plain envelope at him.
He snatched it from the air before it landed in the bassinet of the infant that he was checking on. He handed the envelope back to Cameron as he removed the gloves that he was wearing, mentally preparing himself for the tirade that was sure to come.
"You're joking, right?" she asked incredulously, waving the card in his face as if he hadn't seen enough of it already.
"Nope, not a joke," he replied nonchalantly, looking at her directly in the eye before moving on to the next bassinet.
"You want to take me to dinner to discuss our relationship?" she asked, using air quotes around the word relationship. Her hands were now on her hips with one foot tapping petulantly.
He chose to ignore her as he finished checking the vitals of baby Sarah and signing her chart.
"Chase," Cameron continued, "we don't have a relationship."
She used those blasted air quotes again.
He turned around to meet her gaze, and tried not to feel as cocky as he wanted to at the moment.
"Oh, but I think we do, Allison," he spoke softly into her ear, his voice dropping in pitch and his accent thickening.
He was so close to her that he felt a shudder run down her spine in response to his warm breath against her skin. He gave her a satisfied smile as if the involuntary reaction backed up his claims of a "relationship."
With that, he breezed past her and out of the NICU without as much as a backwards glance.
Chase fidgeted nervously in his seat at the restaurant while he waited for Cameron. He should've insisted that he pick her up and that they arrive together. He knew he should've picked her up.
All of his earlier self confidence was long gone. It was easy to be glib and arrogant when you're only talking about something. It was completely different to remain that way when you're facing the situation head on.
He had no idea what he was going to talk to her about. Should he just jump right into the reasons why he thinks they should try some sort of relationship? Should he make small talk first? And if he went the small talk route, what do you talk about without being clichéd?
"I'd offer you a penny for your thoughts, but I imagine that I'm going to hear them anyway," Cameron said as she walked up to join him.
Surprised by her sudden appearance, Chase jumped up to pull out her chair, nearly knocking his over in the process.
"You'd think that you're 16 and on your first date," she teased, smoothing her skirt underneath the table as he sat back down across from her. "It's just me, Chase."
"That's the thing, Cameron, it's not just you," he told her, looking at her intently.
She was saved from saying anything when the waiter approached to take their drink order.
Awkward silence hung in the air after the waiter had walked away.
"So," Cameron began, but trailed off as she searched her mind for something to say. "How are your NICU rounds going? Any interesting cases?"
"No shop talk," he told her.
He watched as she studied him for a moment and he wanted to curse when he saw he expression soften the same way that it did when she was about to deliver a bad prognosis.
"Chase, look," she began before he cut her off.
"Wait. Let me get this out before you turn me down," he said, fidgeting with his napkin and not quite looking her in the eye.
All Cameron did was give him a slight nod and waited for him to continue.
He finally met her gaze; cloudy blue eyes meeting dark grey ones.
"I know we said that anything more than a one night stand would complicate our live unnecessarily, but I figured that something should be done, even if it is just getting this out in the open," he began.
He studied her gaze for a moment, and seeing no change he decided to continue.
"Are you ready to order?"
Chase fumbled with his menu, unsure of what to say.
"Could we have a few more minutes, please?" Cameron asked.
After the waiter walked away, they studied their menus in silence; quickly deciding what to have before the waiter returned. He came back a few minutes later and they placed their order. Chase glanced around the crowded dining room. Hopefully waiting for their meals would allow for enough time for him to get this all out. He let out a deep breath before continuing.
"I know we said that something more would complicate things, but I can't stop thinking about that night," he told her. "I've never been able to decide if I should feel used or if I should feel as if I used you. You were intoxicated. I should've said no and walked away."
She opened her mouth to protest, but he held up a hand to silence her.
"On the other hand, though, why me? Did you call me thinking that I was some kind of playboy that wouldn't say no?" he asked.
This time he waited for a response. In truth, why she had called him and not House or some other man in her life had been nagging at him for a long time.
"First of all," she began softly, "you didn't use me. I remember egging you on pretty well. I might have been high, but I did know what I was doing."
"So why me?" he asked again, dreading her answer.
"I have to admit that I did call you because I had a feeling that you wouldn't say no, but it wasn't because I thought you were some sort of man whore," she told him, cringing at her choice of words.
He didn't say anything, but continued to look her in the eye. He was surprised to notice that she hadn't looked away from him either.
"I called you because I remembered that you were attracted to me," she admitted.
"So you did think that I was some kind of easy lay," he interrupted.
"No, you didn't let me finish," she said, looking at him pointedly. "I called you because you were sincere in your attraction. You took the time to ask me out for a drink rather than making glib remarks about what I would look like in low-rider jeans."
"So you called me to make House jealous?" he interrupted again, feeling a bit more used than he had before.
"No," she said firmly. "Will you shut up and let me finish?"
He cowered a bit in his seat, looking at her sheepishly.
"You made me feel special instead of making me feel like I was nothing more than a pretty face," she told him, reaching across the small table to rest her hand on his forearm.
He opened his mouth to argue, but he quickly closed it again at her warning look.
"It's a bit hard to explain," she admitted. "Knowing that you were attracted to me and also knowing that you wanted to take the time to get to know me outside of work made me feel exceptional; it's that kind of feeling when you find out that the cute boy in class really likes you."
"I actually have no idea what it feels like to find out that the cute boy in my class really likes me," he joked. "You think I'm cute?"
Cameron rolled her eyes. "Yeah, you're alright to look at," she told him, smiling.
"Where does that leave us?" he asked, noticing that she still hadn't removed her hand from his arm.
"I still think that it's a bad idea for us to try some kind of relationship," she said.
Chase finally broke his gaze away from hers in defeat.
"But," she said, giving his arm a squeeze so that he would look back up at her. "Just because I think it's a bad idea doesn't mean that it isn't also one worth trying."
He brightened considerably, placing his hand on top of hers.
"Does this mean we're officially seeing each other?" he asked, resisting the urge to mimic her air quotes from the other day.
"You could say that," she agreed, giving him a coy smile. "We should really keep it away from work, though. House would have a field day."
"Trust me," he said. "I won't tell House if you won't."
The rest of the evening was spent either in comfortable silence or in light conversation. Chase had insisted on paying the bill in full, despite Cameron's protests. He also insisted on driving her home.
When they arrived at Cameron's apartment door, she pulled out her keys and turned to face him.
"You really didn't have to walk me to my door," she said, fiddling with her keys.
Chase shrugged. "Just doing my part to prove that chivalry isn't quite dead yet," he said, stuffing his hands into his pockets.
She smiled at that before looking away with a sigh. "I guess I should go," she said, hoping that he'd finally get the hint and kiss her.
"Yeah," he drawled. "I guess so."
She opened her door and turned back to look at him from the threshold to her apartment. Heaving a silent sigh, she raised herself up on her toes and pressed her lips to his. She broke the kiss and lowered herself back down onto her heels. When he stepped back towards her, she grabbed him by his belt buckle and pulled him into her apartment.
"Just so we're clear," she said between kisses and shrugging off her coat. "I don't want you to think that I'm some kind of tramp who puts out on the first date."
"I hardly think that this counts as a first date," he told her, shutting her apartment door with his foot.