A/N: Based off a challenge I set myself to use lyrics from ten random songs and write a drabble for each. Please read and review – my first drabble set :D
"It ain't me, it ain't me, I ain't no military son, son.
It ain't me, it ain't me; I ain't no fortunate one, one."
Fortunate Son – Creedence Clearwater Revival
Greg didn't want to play World War Two, but his father sent him out anyway. The other kids charged around, whooping, roaring, making up versions of the war that Greg already knew were stupid. He played unenthusiastically until Andy Jackman's rock-grenade hit Billy Weiss on the forehead. A thin line of blood began trickling down his face. Greg slowly lay down his branch-gun and edged over. He snapped a dock leaf from a bush and hesitantly offered it. Billy took the leaf and pressed it to the cut; Greg watching wide-eyed as the blood stopped dribbling and the leaf darkened.
"They hypnotised the summer, in 1979."
Ignoreland - REM
The days floated by like a dream. House spent every free moment out on the sports fields or down by the river, feeling his muscles define and harden as the weeks went by. His friends watched his exertions in mild astonishment, saying that even a three hour Biology seminar with Doctor Feldman (a stranger to deodorant) was more fun than running laps around the track in the baking heat all day, but he ignored them. He cut classes, skipped lectures in order to sneak down to the river and swim, the cool water over his hot skin in glorious union.
"I'm going back to spend the rest of my life
Beneath that Rising Sun."
In New Orleans – Leadbelly
"I've had enough of your bullshit-"
"Don't you dare curse in this house!" John interrupts savagely, backhanding Greg across the jaw. He blinks – that heartbreaking surprise that he has never lost despite feeling the force of his father's hand many times over the years. She opens her mouth but John silences her. "No, Blythe; he's a man now. Gregory, this jazz talk is utter nonsense. If you leave this house now, you are not coming back-"
Greg is already gone, the door slamming hard. Blythe closes her eyes, fights back tears as John's fist slams down onto the hall table.
"It's so easy to say pet names
When you listen to the trumpet of Harry James."
Jukebox Saturday Night – Glenn Miller and His Orchestra
He is lost in the music, his fingers drumming along with the piano notes on the chipped table marked with cigarette burns. In fact, she is certain that he has forgotten her existence completely until the music fades, replaced by the applause of the audience, and he says: "Move in with me."
"What?" she stammers. It is their third date.
"Move in with me."
"If you're going to make me keep repeating it, I'm gonna need a glass of water," he says dryly, but his anxiety is badly hidden.
"Great," he says, and turns back to the music.
"She's my only true love,
She's all that I think of."
Johnsburg, Illinois – Tom Waits
"She said yes."
"She's moving in?" Wilson exclaims. He's had a few too many. House has had a few too many too many.
"Yeah," he slurs. "Dunno why. It's crazy."
"Then she knows what she's in for," Wilson mumbles, draining his bottle and getting up.
"Get me one."
"You're already way ahead of me."
"Doesn't matter. Fridge, mine; beer, mine. Everything here is mine until Tuesday," House says. Wilson grins, pulling out another beer.
"I love her, Wilson," House suddenly blurts out as Wilson hands him the bottle. Wilson stares for a moment, taken aback. Then he smiles.
"She said 'Life ain't just a bet'
But I ain't never won it yet.
Jack of Diamonds is a hard card to find."
Jack of Diamonds – Lonnie Donegan
She's outside the hospital having a cigarette when her phone rings.
"Stacy, it's James," he rushes. My cell wasn't getting any reception down here. Cuddy just called me, told me what happened. We're at the airport, I'll be there in three hours. What's going on now?"
"He wants to ride it out," she says softly.
"What? That's insane!" he cries.
She nods along instinctively. "He says he might be fine."
"Yeah, and he might die! This is what he wants?"
"Yes. But I..." she takes a deep breath, steadying herself, "I can't let him gamble with his life. I can't."
"Quit stayin' out late at night.
Go home to your wife and your family, where you oughta be,
And sit down by the fireside bright."
Goodnight Irene – Van Morrison
The weight of House's arm around his shoulder is pulling him down, but he staggers into the living room and his hand reaches out through the darkness and turns the dimmer switch on to its lowest setting. He creeps towards the couch, but as he lays House's limp and whiskey-reeking form upon it he can hear footsteps on the stairs. She stops halfway down, wrapped in his dressing gown, and his eyes meet hers.
"Not again, James?" she hisses.
"He's been having a rough time since she left," he mumbles apologetically.
"Haven't we all." She storms back up the stairs.
"She left in the fall,
That's her picture on the wall;
She always had that little drop of poison."
Little Drop of Poison – Tom Waits
He keeps the photos in the bottom drawer in his bedroom. Stacy had always loved to have photos of them around the place, but he has hated seeing pictures of himself ever since he was a boy, when his father had looked at his school photo, frowned, shaken his head and muttered: "You're a funny-looking kid, Greg." Smiling on command had never been something that had come naturally to him, but here he was practically grinning, his face alive and close to hers in the cramped photo booth. Of course it had been easy to smile then; he was happy.
"Down in the jailhouse on my knees
Down in the jailhouse on my knees
Down in the jailhouse on my knees, Great God,
And I ain't a-gonna be treated this a-way."
Going Down The Road Feelin' Bad – Bill Monroe
The worst thing about the cell was how hard it was. It wasn't the first time House had spent the night in the state's custody, but it was the first time since the infarction that he hadn't slept in a bed. The bench against the wall was narrow, unaccommodating and occupied by a vagrant who burbled in his sleep. Sitting on the floor was even worse. He realised that he had become soft, used to resting in comfortable chairs. He shifted awkwardly, stared dully through the wire of his cage and resumed his counting of each aching minute until freedom.
"And now the drugs don't work,
They just make you worse."
The Drugs Don't Work – The Verve
It is five days after his fifty-third birthday that he pushes down two Vicodin in the filthy bathroom of a smoky barroom and realises they aren't working. The screaming pain, the agony that had blinded him as he lurched into the bathroom and clung desperately to an ugly green enamel basin had subsided just enough to be able to stand, to see his pale and sweating face in the cracked mirror before him, but no more. He tries not to panic, forces two more pills down his dry throat and waits. No effect. This is the beginning of the end.