NOTES: This is both an experiment in writing style and a little piece of an idea that wouldn't leave me alone. I'm not sure whether I like it. I'm also not sure whether it fits into the same world as Exposure. I would love feedback on both, as they may play into my longer fics later on.

"How come you're never the one to call anymore?" asks Chase, when he's lying tired and naked in her bed.

Cameron shrugs, and leans over to run her fingers through his (sweat) damp blond hair in a gesture that would almost be affectionate if it weren't for her rules. She doesn't tell him the truth, that he's her (latest) drug of choice. That she gets a new kind of high every time he calls, or catches her eye, or walks her to her car without having to be asked.

She isn't like Wilson. (But House will never see the difference.) Wilson is addicted to needy people, to the ability to make them just a little bit better. Cameron is addicted to desire. To the look that says I know you're the only one who still cares. (And the proverbial favors she's owed by simple virtue of being a beautiful woman.)

She's also addicted to the hunt: Just how far she can stretch that desire before it breaks. By a split, or a proposal (a statement that this is the end of the supplication line.) Sometimes (when it's a patient) by death.

The professional part of her knows it's wrong (the closest thing she sees to a sin,) but she can't bring herself to stop. She tells herself she ought to work to earn respect, and so she does. (In her career, at least.) But she's situated herself in the lap of desire, in the place where people are most vulnerable, nearly every day of her life.

Sometimes, she thinks she must be evil. Possessed by the demon that's the (false) chemistry of need.

"I can't help that you've been beating me to it lately," she tells Chase at last. She lets her hand leave his hair and trail down his chest. "There's a bottle of wine in the refrigerator. Want to go get it?"

Chase sits up and smiles lazily. "Do I need to get glasses too?"

Cameron rolls her eyes and leans back against the pillows, a wave of satisfaction washing (caressing) over her as he walks compliantly out of the room.