Mark had watched as Meredith yelled at House as tears rolled off her cheeks then turn and run the opposite direction. House stood dumbfounded as he glanced over at Mark through the window. Mark studied his face carefully and gave him a small nod. House took a deep breath and hobble towards the stairs where Meredith had disappeared in. She was sitting on the ground with her knees in her chest, and her head buried in her hands. House slid down the wall beside her letting his cane fall beside him. They sat in silent as Meredith's light sobs shook her body. He wrapped his arm around her shoulders and pulled her closer to him. Her head fell to her shoulder as she clutched to his abdomen for comfort. He rested his head against the top of hers planting a soft kiss on it.
"None of this was ever your fault." He whispered.
"It's not fair." She sobbed.
"I know." He sighed.
"She could hardly look at me for years, Uncle Greg. Why… Why did she hate me?"
"She didn't hate you… She was just confused."
"I miss him so much."
"I miss him too, Mer." He hugged her close for nearly forty-five minutes before she was ready to return to work. She helped him off the floor and walked beside him back into the pit. A few nurses curiously watched, but she didn't bother to pay attention. She led House out of the pit to the elevator. They rode it in silence. When the doors opened, she saw Mark standing among five women and Derek. He was listening to them talk, but she could tell he was distracted. When their eyes connected, he hurried over.
"Are you okay?" He asked as she practically fell into his embrace even though they were in the middle of the hospital. She nodded but didn't dare herself to speak. She felt safe in his strong arms and was reluctant to pull away to look at him. She could see the concern in his eyes as she ran her soft fingers along his jaw line.
"I'll be okay." She promised with a small, wavering smile. He planted a light, loving kiss on his lips and tightened his grip around her. She reached up and wiped a tear from her cheek. "I love you."
"I love you, too." He said softly. "Let's go home." She gave him a small nod. "Let me go get out of a surgery, and I'll be right back."
She stood on her tiptoes and kissed him light. When she fell back down on her heels, she nodded. "I'll go change."
He gave House a worried look before turning and walking back towards the nurses' station. House wrapped and arm around her shoulders and led her towards the locker room.
"Page Dr. Rogers please." He asked the nurse. She nodded and picked up the phone. "We're going to have to reschedule tonight, guys." He told his family.
"Is something wrong?" Mama Shepherd asked.
"Like I said, Mer is going through a pretty rough time. But I'll call you tomorrow." He promised as her noticed Dr. Rogers coming up.
"Dr. Sloan?" Rogers greeted.
"Dr. Rogers, something has come up, and I have a skin graph in an hour and a half. Interested?"
He nodded, took the chart, said a 'thank you,' and walked away. Mark sighed and picked up the phone at the nurses' station. After dialing the Chief's extension number, he waited impatiently for him to answer.
"Richard Webber." Richard's voice came.
"Chief, I'm leaving now. Rogers is covering my surgery."
"Something has come up with Meredith, and I have to go."
"Okay." Richard said sounding satisfied with the answer.
"Thanks, Chief. Bye." He quickly hung up and turned.
"Well, is Meredith okay?" Derek asked.
Mark rolled his eyes at Derek. "Would I be taking off if she was okay?"
"What's the matter, Mark?" Mama Shepherd asked.
"I can't tell you. The walls have ears." He told them as he quickened his step up the stairs, but the Shepherds stayed close behind.
"Come on, Mark. Nobody is around." Nancy argued.
"Someone is always around and listening." Mark stated firmly as he opened the door to the fifth floor. He sighed and turned to look at them. "Look, right now isn't the best time to do the whole family hovering thing."
"We aren't hovering." Kathleen protested.
"Just please, Mer can't handle anything like this right now." He said firmly.
"Maybe we can help. Just tell us what's going on." Mama Shepherd told him.
"There's nothing you can do. Just… please?"
Sighing, Mama Shepherd reluctantly nodded. "Okay."
"I'll see you later." He kissed her cheek and hurried away.