Thank you all for your tremendous response to this fic. And since I can't seem to leave Sarah alone, a sequel to the sequel has begun taking place in her teen years. It's tentatively titled at this point in time and has some work on it. Stay tuned and thanks for being fantastic readers!
"Things are going... well?" Wilson raised his eyebrows as he sat at his desk.
"My patient just died, so yeah," House replied as he moved into Wilson's office.
Wilson's mouth fell open. "Oh, House, I'm-"
"I didn't have a patient," House cut him off, stopping in the middle of the room and smirking.
"Nice," Wilson commented, frowning now. "And I meant well with Sarah."
"Mick?" House asked. "What about her?"
"I do talk to Lisa, you know," Wilson pointed out.
"Right, girl talk." House nodded.
"And you've been coming to the park for the last month," Wilson added.
"I've taken up bird watching," House told him.
Wilson stared at him. "House-"
"Sorry." House cut in as he made his way to the door as he glanced at his watch. "Now's about the time when I go mess with the new kid on my team."
"I just wanted to tell you that I'm happy for you," Wilson spoke up.
House lingered a moment at the door and ran his tongue over the backside of his bottom lip. He gave a short nod to Wilson and left.
"Does it distract you when I do... this?"
House pressed himself against Cuddy's backside and his lips found themselves on the side of her neck. Cuddy smirked and pulled her purse across her desk toward her.
"I thought you said you weren't going to-" Cuddy drew in a quick breath as his teeth lightly made their way across her clavicle.
Cuddy picked up her purse and faced House. He still remained close to her and he brought his lips to hers. He tugged gently on her bottom lip as he drew back. Cuddy smiled and then stepped around him.
"I have to pick Sarah up from school," she told him as she headed for the door.
"I'll go with you." House grabbed his cane from its resting place against Cuddy's desk.
"No." Cuddy stopped at the door. "You'll go home, change, and then come over at seven if you want."
"If I want?" House raised his eyebrows as he crossed to her. "Of course I want. I always want."
"Good," Cuddy replied and headed out the door. "We'll see you at seven."
"House!" Sarah tugged on his arm. "Come in. Mom's in the kitchen. Wanna see me play the song I'm learning?"
"Sure," House replied.
Sarah closed the door behind him. She led him down the hallway. Cuddy peeked out from the dining room.
"Hi." She gave House a smile. "I'll be done in a minute."
"Take your time," House replied and gave her a wink. "We've got all night."
Cuddy shook her head and returned to the kitchen. Sarah pulled House into her pink bedroom which was covered in Hello Kitty paraphernalia. She hurried to her guitar and picked it up.
With her tongue peeking from her mouth in her concentration, Sarah began to play the chords she had learned. House watched, a smile tugging at his mouth.
"She's getting better everyday," Cuddy said from the doorway in a quiet tone.
Cuddy entered into the room and stood next to House. He took Cuddy's hand within his own. Her hand was cold and slightly damp within his warm one. House figured she must have just loaded the dishwasher.
Sarah's playing stopped and she looked to House. "That's all I know so far."
"You're doing great, Mick," House told her. "A natural. You'll give Mick Jagger a run for his money."
Sarah smiled and returned her guitar to its stand. House gave Cuddy's hand a squeeze before letting it go. Sarah approached them.
"Can we watch a movie?" she asked.
"Sure," Cuddy answered before she exchanged a look with House as Sarah hurried out of the bedroom.
Forty minutes later, House and Cuddy were seated on the couch with Sarah between them, the singing guppies filling the television screen. Sarah had cuddled underneath Cuddy's arm and House had taken to tracing circles behind Cuddy's shoulder with his thumb.
By the end of the seventy nine minute film, Sarah's head made it to Cuddy's lap and House's hand lost itself behind Cuddy's back. As the credits rolled, Sarah stirred from her state of near sleep and sat up. She looked to her mother.
"Time for bed," Cuddy told her.
"But, it's not even nine!" Sarah exclaimed, blinking away her sleepiness.
"We have to get up early tomorrow," Cuddy replied.
"Mom," Sarah whined. "I wanna stay up. House is here."
"No, sweetie, come on."
Cuddy stirred and Sarah climbed off the couch. House's hand felt cold now that Cuddy's warmth was gone. Cuddy stood up and attempted to direct Sarah to the doorway, but she stood grounded.
"What about House?" Sarah asked her mother. "He's gotta leave, too."
Cuddy looked to House and then lowered herself back down to the couch. She took Sarah's hand within her own.
"Actually, Sarah," Cuddy began. "He's going to spend the night."
"He's sleeping over?" Sarah stared at Cuddy.
"Yes," Cuddy answered.
Sarah's eyebrows drew together. "Where?"
"In my room," Cuddy replied.
"Can't he stay in mine?" Sarah tugged on her mother's hand. "I have a sleeping bag."
"Sleeping on the floor isn't good for his leg," Cuddy told her.
Sarah bounced slightly in her excitement. "He can have my bed and I'll sleep on the floor. Please, Mom." She looked to House. "Please, Da- House."
"Sorry, Mick." House shook his head. "You've got to get your sleep and we'd just stay up all night telling ghost stories and painting our nails."
"No, we won't!" Sarah exclaimed. "Please!" She turned back to Cuddy. "Please?"
"No, sweetie, come on."
Cuddy stood back up and led Sarah from the living to the little girl's bedroom. Sarah folded her arms across her chest, pouting. Cuddy walked over the bed and sat down.
"Come here before we get ready for bed," Cuddy patted the open space next to her.
Sarah stared at her mother a moment before crossing the room and sitting next to her.
"What?" Sarah asked.
"Sarah," Cuddy paused a moment, "what would you think if Greg stayed here more often?"
Sarah eyed Cuddy carefully. "How often?"
"Well, a few night's a week at first," Cuddy told her. "Then... maybe all the time. If things work out."
Sarah's eyes widened. "He'd live here?"
"Yes," Cuddy answered.
"With us?" Sarah scrunched her face up.
"Yes." Cuddy gave a nod.
Sarah's face softened. "And he'd be my father?"
"He is your father," Cuddy reminded.
"But..." Sarah tried to articulate her thoughts. "We'd be... like a family."
"Sarah," Cuddy tenderly tucked some hair behind her daughter's ear. "We were always a family. You and me."
"But, we'd be a family with a dad now," Sarah said.
"Right," Cuddy agreed.
Sarah slid from the bed and gave a shrug. "I guess that's okay."
"Okay." Cuddy nodded, watching her daughter. "If you're unsure or feel upset or uncomfortable, let me know and we'll talk about it. All right?"
Sarah faced her mother. "Yeah, Mom."
"Get ready for bed," Cuddy told her and stood from the bed. "Brush your teeth. I'll come and tuck you in."
Sarah nodded and headed to her dresser to retrieve her pajamas. Cuddy exited her bedroom and walked back down the hall to the living room.
"How'd it go?" House stood from the couch.
"Good." Cuddy walked toward him. "I think."
"You think?" House skimmed a hand down Cuddy's arm.
"No," Cuddy answered. "It is good. She understands. It's just new to her."
House removed his hand. "If you think we're going too fast-"
"We're all right," Cuddy told him with a nod.
"Okay." House nodded as well. "So, it's all right if I kiss you here?" House kissed her right cheek. "And here?" He kissed her left cheek. "And here?" He brought his lips to hers.
Cuddy pulled away from House and called toward the hallway, "Coming!"
House followed Cuddy down the hall to Sarah's bedroom. Cuddy entered while House lingered in the doorway. Sarah climbed into her bed and pulled her blankets over herself.
"That was fast," Cuddy said to her daughter.
"I'm a fast brusher," Sarah replied.
"Lemme see them," Cuddy commanded as she sat down on the bed while Sarah showed her an exaggerated smile. Cuddy noted the two teeth coming in and she nodded. "Very good. Goodnight, Sarah."
"Night, Mom," Sarah responded.
Cuddy bent down and kissed her daughter on the forehead. "I love you very much."
"Love you, too." Sarah kissed her mother's cheek in return. Sarah then directed her gaze to the doorway. "Night, Dad."
Cuddy looked to House. House took a step into the room.
"Night, Mick," he called out to the child.
Cuddy smoothed the bed sheets and stood. She crossed the room and turned out the light. House moved out the room, followed by Cuddy. She left the door slightly ajar.
House headed for Cuddy's bedroom. Cuddy followed him in and shut the door behind her. House switched on the lamp and seated himself on the edge of the bed. Cuddy stared at him.
"That was unexpected," House said, his eyes on Cuddy.
"Not really." Cuddy shrugged. "She's called you Dad twice when I've been with her. She constantly corrects herself." Cuddy eyed him up. "You okay?"
"Yeah," House replied.
Cuddy walked over to the bed and sat down next to him. "Greg..."
"I'm fine," he insisted. "Just never thought I'd be sitting here with you and having a kid calling me Dad."
Cuddy took House's chin in her hand and planted a kiss on his lips before drawing back and smiling. "Don't you just love train wrecks?"