House was thrown out of his analytical catastrophe by the voice of James Wilson. He smothered the badge in his fist, stuffing it in his jacket pocket, and quickly shifting his glare to the doorway, where Wilson uneasily stood, feet shifting, as if his legs were asleep. His arms were folded firmly against his chest. His face exuded the pessimism for the task given to him.

House quickly assessed his friend's body language.



"I'm not a parent of one of your bald kids. I don't need the nice doctor telling me that everything will be okay"

House broke the gaze, and began to pick on a scabbing paper cut on his forefinger.

Wilson cleared his throat.

"So I assume your clever mind must have deducted that I was just on the phone with your mother."

"No, I wiretapped your phone. That's how I also know that your subscription Graphic Erotica has expired. Never knew you went for the lesbos, Jimmy. "

Wilson clenched his eyes and pinched the bridge of his nose. This wasn't working. He knew how to work through House's games. He was one of the remaining few who still dared to attempt. The best course of action was to ignore the comment, and get to the point.

"You told her that you're planning to attend your father's funeral."

"Don't have a case. I would rather have half-senial marine vets tell me how proud I should be that I'm the son of the courageous John House, then sit in the clinic pondering why some people can't accept that the common cold isn't meningitis…'

House abruptly stopped his rant as he caught the look in his friend's eyes. He didn't want to push Wilson away, not now. House broke the stare, and began to refocus his attention on his scabbed forefinger.

"Are you going?"

Wilson allowed himself to relax.

"Well I was invited, so…"

House squeezed the scab, concentrating on the sting.

"I want you there."

House immediately locked his eyes with Wilson, observing how he processed the words just spoken.

Wilson was slightly shocked by House's words, but was not entirely surprised. House has opened up to him before. He was hoping for this reaction, but certainly did not expect it.

"I want to be there."

House couldn't hold back his smile. He told himself to hate the sappiness of the conversation, but he couldn't. The thought of having his best friend to help him through this outweighed his concern of persona. However, he made sure to still keep his head down.

Wilson realized House's discomfort.

"Okay, I should go talk to Cuddy about getting us tomorrow and Friday off."

House kept his focus on his right forefinger.

Wilson sighed. There was one issue still left unmentioned. He desperately wanted to never mention it, and tell House's mother that House still refused her request. Wilson lowered his head, and furrowed his brow, not breaking the stare. There was no harm in asking.

"Are you planning to…"?


House tore off the scab; small droplets of blood began to travel down his forefinger. He adverted his attention to Wilson.

Wilson's eyes dropped to his black Dockers. He realized he was asking too much too soon. He had to give to House time. Tomorrow, he'll confront him. But for now,

"I was just going to ask if you plan on telling your team."

Wilson carefully regained eye contact with House. He was lying. House knew what the real question was. He wasn't ready to talk about it. He was relived that Wilson picked up on his discomfort of the issue.

House realized, that Wilson's cover question also held some significance. He glanced into the meeting room. Foreman sat down with his second cup of coffee, reclining in his chair. Chase was seated next to him, intently trying to decipher an expert Sudoku puzzle. He sat back in his chair, twirling a pen in his mouth. House couldn't see Cameron from where he was seated, but new she was writing an apology letter to a woman, whom he told was pregnant with cholesterol, yesterday in the clinic. Nothing was a bit out of the ordinary.

"I won't show up to work. Cuddy will send them to the clinic. Cameron will try to badger it out of her. Cuddy will eventually give in. I'll come back to a sappy "I'm sorry you daddy died" card from Cameron, a fake condolence from Chase, and a stare of pity from Foreman."

Wilson gave in to his amusement, letting out a giggle. He loved how great his friend was at easing tension in such situations. His hands returned to his hip, as he slowly backed towards the door.

"Fair enough. I need to talk to Cuddy, and reschedule a few appointments."

House lowered his head, as Wilson left the office. He continued to watch his blood drip, how it rolled down his finger, and fell a few inches until it hit the blank paper on his desk. He liked how each drop landed in different ways, each forming unique shapes and patterns. After a minute, the blood stopped dripping.

House sat back in his chair. He felt a slight pinch in his hip. He took the pin out of his pocket, and placed in front of him. He began to feel the constant ache in his leg increase. House grabbed his scarred thigh, and opened his desk drawer with the other. His hand emerged, grasping his vicodin bottle.

House popped off the top, spilling out a white pill in his hand. He was about to swallow them, but froze. House slowly opened his hand, studying the pill, as if he could read it like he could a person.

House closed his eyes, and lets the pills fall out of his hand. He concentrated on the increasing pain in his leg. One good thing about being in pain, it could be used as a distraction.

His hand slowly began to tense on his right thigh. The pain didn't force him to forget, as he hoped it would, but reminded him of what he faced.

House winced as he leaned down to pick up the pill. He felt the pill slip into his mouth, and drift down his esophagus. The haziness soon filled his head, the pain subsided.