"So, does mom know why you are driving across America to California?"

"I told her we are going to that Disney place with the little mouse with the large antlings, but we really going for the poker tournament. I expect to… what is that expression – scrub the floor with that viooltje Mat Damon."

House frowned. That was a disturbing image. "How come you're the only person in the world who can lie to her?"

Oma smiled evilly. "Practice." She abruptly changed the subject. "So you and the Jew are back together?" she asked over her bagel.

"Oma! We are not a couple."


He spread his hands out in exasperation. "Oma!" he said threateningly. "We are not a couple. He's just a moron with a neediness complex."

She smiled, reached over and held is hand. She looked into his eyes. House couldn't look away. "I am glad your Jew made you go to the funeral. He was from ons huis. In his honour I imbibed."

House snorted. "You always imbibe."

"Ah, yes, but on that day I imbibed more." She dabbed at a tear in her eye. "It seemed only fitting because of what I have here before me. Big, beautiful and unshaven." She frowned. "You are not drinking your schnapps mijn jongen."

"Oma, you know I like bourbon." As soon as the words were out of his mouth House knew he had made a mistake. In a second Oma had snared a waiter in her sights. Trapped like a rabbit in the headlights he could only nod in terror as she ordered the oldest bottle of whiskey on their list. "And charge it to him," she said, pointing at House.

"Oma," he said pleadingly, knowing that it was a lost cause.

"Nonsense Gregor. Live a little. And I too can embrace your quaint American customs," she said as she picked up the bottle that had been deposited on the table.

He waved his hands. "Ah, Oma… " It was too late, most of the bourbon was gone.

"Oh, I'm sorry little huis." She poured him a glass and raised the bottle again. "To life my knappe jongen… my clever clever jongen."

Despite himself he smiled. Sometimes it was nice to have Oma around – even if she did drink all the gin.