AN: Long chapter ahead for you guys as a final goodbye, I hope I'm tying up all the lose ends and if I don't tell me and I'll gladly write it in somewhere or… whatever. I just wanna thank all of you for the wonderful reviews they kept me going, they're like sugar, or caffeine, God, caffeine makes me crazy. But anyway, I had a lot of fun with this story, which might sound weird since this is an angst story… bleh, whatever, I'll miss writing this story, thanks you guys for everything! See you next time!
By the way, before I go on ahead and finish this story lets just all put up a plea that James really isn't leaving the hospital or worse slowly getting written out of the show. I know they won't because that would be stupidest move in TV show history (right up there with killing off Carson is Stargate: Atlantis). He can't leave that would be idiotic but just in case lets all just hope together and maybe our hope will slap the writers back to their senses…
He's not leaving… I won't allow it.
He was staying with House, of course, where else would he be? Neither Michael or his parents lived in the area and he wasn't about to go back to the hotel, besides, he needed supervision for a little while and what better to do that then a doctor. A relapse was not something he needed right now especially today, it was the court date and if he started dry heaving and coughing up blood he doubted he would show and no matter how much he wanted to avoid this he knew he had to go.
He stood I front of the mirror in the bathroom trying to decipher if he was even court worthy. The bruises were now long gone but he was still white as a sheet and the bags under his eyes made him look like the walking dead not to mention he had lost a bit of weight. His suit hung a little loose on him then it normally would have but he wasn't swimming in it, be thankful for small favors he supposed. Nocturnal
There was a knock at the bathroom door which made him jump slightly and pull him from his inner monologue. "Huh?" He asked dumbly.
"C'mon," House said on the other end. "Hurry up in there I thought you were the one so concerned about being on time?"
James glanced down at his watch and realized they should have left almost five minutes ago. He cursed to himself and walked to the door, he unlocked it and then swung it open to reveal an anxious House standing on the other side. If James didn't know better he would have thought there was a wedding, but then again House didn't even dress up this nice for that.
He was in a suit and even held a tie, though on his feet he still wore sneakers, he didn't shave but it did look like he made an attempt at trimming his scruff. "Are you ready yet?" House asked incredulously. "I'm pretty sure prom already started 'cause the limo's been waiting for us for about twenty minutes."
With a shadow of a grin of his face he limped out of the bathroom with his own cane in toe and headed out to the living room. "Yeah…"
House furrowed his brow slightly and walked over making sure he was in James's line of vision. "Hey, you okay?"
James took a deep breath before answering. "No… no not really, but this isn't something I can put off forever… is it?"
"Well I would." House shrugged and then noticed James's look and let out a long sigh. "Yeah, I get it. Let's go, the sooner we get this over with the better."
James gave more of a grumbling mumble then a reply but he knew this was inevitable, no matter how much he wanted to run into the bedroom and hide under the covers. He had to do this. He had to face his fears… no matter how much they scared him and haunted his dreams.
They made their way to the front door of the apartment complex and over to the car, it was a slow process since both men were now limping, James a little more then House for once. It was about a twenty minute drive to the court house which meant it was about twenty minutes until James went into a panic attack, or maybe even had a mini stroke, either way, as long as it got him out of there.
"Remember moral support." Michael said as he walked out of the hospital with Cuddy, Chase, Forman and Cameron following behind him. "No gasping or freaking out at the pictures of the accusations or anything…"
"Michael," Cuddy began placing a comforting hand on his shoulder. "We were all on duty when he was admitted. I don't think there's much we haven't seen."
"I know," he sighed. "That little talk was for me…"
She smiled warmly at him and gave his shoulders s rub. "You'll be fine, and if it's too much for you just look away."
"I don't know if I'll be able to though, I mean all you guys," he motioned around to the doctors surrounding him. "See this kinda stuff everyday! I'm an architect! The worst I've seen is a poorly designed building fall on little plastic people in a model…" he hung his head in his hands and took deep breaths.
"I'm sure you'll hold up." Cameron said with a reassuring smile. "You're his brother, he needs you most right now and that can get you through anything… or I think it can." She added sheepishly.
"Yeah, yeah, I know, just hold me back when I try to kill the people who did this to my baby brother." He growled folding his arms across his chest.
"Might have a bit of trouble with that," Chase mumbled. "I think you won't be the only one who's going to have to be held back."
Michael smiled, happy that James managed to acquire such good friends over the years. "Well then, it's a good thing these sort of functions have security, huh?" He asked with a forced smile.
Forman nodded and walked a few steps forward. "Doesn't look like we'll have to be held back if we never make it." He gently reminded them looking pointedly at his watch.
Upon seeing the time the group held in a sharp intake of breath. "Oh…" She moaned and lead the way to the parking lot so they could get a move on they would already be late, but maybe if they hit all the green lights they could possibly be on time.
So far everything was going along fine. James sat in his seat with his lawyer sitting right next to him. He couldn't help but feel a little nervous, less then twenty feet away from him were the people who inflicted so much pain on him, he couldn't even bring himself to look up at them yet.
House was sitting almost directly behind him, along with Michael, Cuddy, Forman, Cameron and Chase. He couldn't be happier they were all here, he didn't know what he would do if he had to go through this alone, he probably wouldn't make it. But the one thing that he wasn't too fond of, sitting directly behind them were his mother and father, he didn't want them to see. They were his parents they weren't supposed to see their son beaten to a bloody pulp and unconscious. It wasn't right.
He wasn't really paying attention to the trial; they would be convinced no matter what the case against them was just too strong. So when they called his name he almost jumped out of his skin and looked up to see his lawyer standing in front of him with a look in his eyes he didn't think lawyers had the power of possessing. Sympathy.
"I'm sorry," James began and shook his head for a moment. "What was that?"
"Could you please take the stand? You need to testify." He said quietly allowing James to take in the information.
"Oh, sure." James said and stood up grabbing the cane; his lawyer walked him over to the stand and waited patiently while he sat down on the bench. He scanned the room and everyone's eyes were planted firmly on him, he felt a bit like an animal at the zoo.
"Do you promise to tell the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth?" The large man asked.
James nodded before he spoke. "I do."
"Dr. Wilson." His lawyer asked walking up to him. "Can you describe in detail exactly what happened the night you were abducted?"
"I was at the hospital; I was trying to finish up some paperwork."
"What exactly do you do at the hospital?"
"I'm Head of the Oncology Department."
"Let it be recognized that Dr. Wilson is a respected member of the community, he saves lives for a living, which is more then I can say for the defendants."
James was expecting the lawyer of the criminals to jump up and yell 'objection' or whatever lawyers did but when he glanced over he saw they didn't have a lawyer. They were representing themselves, this only made him squirm more, this meant they knew they were doomed and now they just wanted to see him suffer as he relived it. This was perfect.
"Continue Dr. Wilson." His lawyer stated as he continued to pace the room.
"I decided to go home eventually, it was late, a little too late I guess, uh, I drove to the hotel,"
"Why are you staying at a hotel?"
"I had a divorce." He replied simply, the lawyer was trying to establish sympathy, like he needed any more.
"Thank you, you may proceed."
"I got out of my car and while I'm walking to my room a car approaches me and asks me for directions, I thought it was strange but they claimed they were expected at their sisters house, or sister-in-law or someone and they didn't have much time to spare… I believe them. I tried to help but next thing I know I was hit over the head with something and then they said something else… I can't remember it now… sorta fuzzy."
"What about when you woke up?" He asked quietly.
"Uh… it was dark… cold. There was water dripping from somewhere. My hands were tied behind my back." He was now staring off into space as the horrible memory flooded his mind. "My ankles were tied too… then the door opened and they came down." He glanced over at the faces of the three people who managed to make his life hell.
"Who came down?"
"Steven and Sarah Carthwall." He breathed. "And Daniel Worthen."
"You're sure it was them?"
It's all your fault!
He looked up at his lawyer. "They told me, his sister and his wife and sister-in-law she was… she was a patient of mine, she died, I couldn't save her."
"Then what happened."
"They beat me," he said choosing to leave the part of him screaming like a child, caving into Carthwall's demands. "Then uh, they left." He said quickly also leaving out Sarah's creepy possession over him. "It's all sort of jumbled together… I fell asleep but they came back down again they had a… they had a knife. And then he uh… uh he…"
"Need I remind you Dr. Wilson, you are under oath."
"He uh, he called me a Goddamned Yid." He said quickly early a gasp throughout the room. "Then he cut me… a lot… he wrote things on me…" He looked down at his hands that twitched nervously on his lap. He could have sworn he heard his mother cry out. "They kept coming back," he whispered completely lost in the memory. "They wouldn't stop, I begged them but… they wouldn't…"
His lawyer took a deep breath. "Thank you, Mr. Wilson, you may return to your seat. I would now like to call up Dr. Gregory House to the stand." As they past one another House gave James a reassuring clasp on the shoulder before limping his way up to the stand.
James was in such a daze he didn't even register what was going on, all he knew was that he had to go back to his seat and then he saw House standing next to him with a small smile. When he sat down there were more comforting hands patting him on the shoulder, but he didn't run around to acknowledge them, he stood still and got lost in his own thoughts which probably wasn't the best thing at the moment.
"I found James in his hotel room." House said using his first name for a change. "He was bloody, beaten and barley conscious, I called an ambulance and stabilized him best I could before they got there."
"You work at the hospital with Dr. Wilson, am I correct?"
Normally House would have made some snappy remark but this time he kept his mouth shut. "Yes, I'm Head of Diagnostics."
"Thank you, please, proceed."
"We took him to the hospital, none of his injuries were life threatening he would live but then… then we found out he was infected with pneumonic plague. They gave it to him somehow; his chances of survival were fifteen percent. He's still not up to his full strength yet but he made it… he survived." He gave James a small smile.
"An incredible story, wouldn't you say?" The lawyer asked the jury. "Fifteen percent chance of survival with a bombardment of injuries to top it off and this man survived so he could come here today and tell us his story." He motioned to James. "Now, Dr. House, we have some images taken not long after Dr. Wilson was rescued do we not?"
"Could we please show them?"
James shut his eyes but that didn't block out the gasps that chorused throughout the door, that time he defiantly heard his mother cry. Cracking his eye open he had to suppress a cry himself, if he didn't know better he wouldn't of known it was him. House described the injuries and the specifics of each photo but he couldn't listen to it, he was too absorbed in the photos. Then the ones that really hit him showed up, the wounds that now scarred his skin for ever. The Star of David on his shoulder, the word 'failure' spelled out across his chest, Yid on his other arm…
He lowered his head, these people were sick and now because of them he would be forever scarred. That is until he got some plastic surgery done to cover them, it was a lot to cover… what if he couldn't afford it? He would have to have these scars, these constant reminders of the torture he went though. He wouldn't be able to go to the beach anymore, he liked the beach but he also wasn't one of the guys who felt the need to wear the t-shirt in the water. He would have to now.
He shook his head and pulled himself from his own mind, House was done talking, the pictures were gone and there were murmurs in the court room. He didn't know if he could stand by any longer and listen to this. People were talking around him but it was all in a muffled haze, he felt like passing out. This was too much of a toll on his system, the stress was overwhelming, he knew he should have been used to stress by now but he couldn't handle it.
The room was spinning.
He felt light headed.
He was dizzy.
A headache evident in his skull.
"I…" he breathed gathering the attention of some of the people around him. "I'm gonna pass out."
Just like that the world went black around him.
There was screaming and shouting, and laughing around him, particularly the high pitched shrill that could only belong to Sarah as she giggled and squealed like a child. He even heard her cry out things to her brother in triumph, she was glad he passed out, she was taking joy in it. They yelled things; he didn't catch them he was in that confusing stage of being awake but… not. He was stuck in the middle and he was sure in a few moments he would be gone for good. His head hurt, bad, he didn't think he hit it on the way down, or maybe he did? He didn't know, at the moment he could barley remember where he was. That was when everything faded from him again and he slipped away.
He woke up on the floor of the court room with blurred vision and about a dozen people gazing over him. But the person who was hovering closest was House; behind him were the assortment of doctors who were in the room. He shut his eyes completely again, he wasn't sure if they noticed he had awoken.
"Greg?" He moaned. "What happened?"
"Passed out." House said gruffly as James dully noticed that he was supporting his head.
James tried to stand up but was pushed down by House, that's when he realized he must have been in a painful situation if he was this close to him on the ground. His leg didn't allow him to get down on his knees easily.
"You stay down until we can get an ambulance here then you're going straight back to the hospital." House ordered.
He shook his head. "No, no, House I'm fine, I just need to rest a bit."
"And you'll be doing that at the hospital were we can keep an eye on you." Cuddy answered. "No buts about it."
"You're not my mother." James grumbled as he tried to sit up again, this time House let him.
"No." Said the sharp tone and he closed his eyes, he had forgotten they were all here. "But I am and you are going right back to that hospital James Evan Wilson! I will not have my son going home after something like this, you need rest and you'll do it where all these nice men and women can watch you."
"Mom…" he tried to protest.
"I will not hear it!" She quipped standing over by his father, Michael was one of the people standing over him. "Greg, keep an eye on him, will you? I can't watch him twenty four seven but you can."
He looked over and saw House smirking beside him. "Yes, Mrs. Wilson." House replied like they were still in school. He continued to smirk until he saw James wince. "You okay, man?"
"Yeah… just a headache." He whispered shutting his eyes against the lights of the room. "Just this is one way to get outta doing this, huh?"
"I just wish you could have alerted me before you did it." House played along. "I mean I'm all for getting out of responsibilities, but this is taking it a bit far, don't you think?"
James chuckled and lowered his hand from his head just when sirens were heard in the distance. "How long was I out?" He mumbled knowing well that the ambulance couldn't get here that fast if he was out for only a few seconds.
"A few good minutes." House answered. "Started getting worried, I couldn't wake you up."
"Are you tired?"
"Once we get you checked over properly you can, not yet though. Do you understand me?"
"Just making sure." House replied defensively. "You seem kinda out of it."
He cracked a smile and nodded. "I kinda am."
The door burst open and they heard the familiar noises of the paramedics rushing in ready to take over the situation. He looked around and saw that House was quickly helped up by Chase and Forman, he was surprised he let the two younger doctors help him. But in another way he wasn't, he knew House didn't want to be in the way and getting up from the position he was in on the floor would not only be painful for him, but it would take a while.
He felt himself getting lifted up and placed on the gurney as the paramedics bustled about around him. He wasn't aware of too much during the ride, he knew House once again rode with him in the back and the paramedic was asking him a bunch of questions. He felt like passing out again, exhaustion was taking over his body until finally he couldn't take it any longer and he slipped into a blissful sleep.
When he awoke sometime later he found himself in a hospital bed. He was really getting sick of this place. With a quick glance he saw the House was by his side with the TV on, he was watching a soap opera.
"Which one is it?" James asked shifting his position in the bed and blinking a few times to clear his vision.
"Days of our Lives." House answered picking up the remote to turn the TV off. "Repeat," he said rolling his eyes. "How are you?"
He nodded. "How long was I out?"
"About, oh." He looked down at his watch for effect. "Twenty seven hours give or take a few seconds."
He looked up in shock. "Are you serious?"
"When am I not? Listen, James, have you been sleeping at all?" He asked with true concern in his voice. "People don't just pass out and sleep that long from being overstressed which you are by the way."
"I've slept," he said rubbing his eyes and when he peeked past them he noticed the disbelieving look House was giving him. "Okay, so maybe not very well…"
He shrugged. "I dunno, nightmares sometimes, thinking too much."
House could have made a joke right there, some smarted assed quip, but he didn't. he gave an nod and leaned back in the seat and didn't say a word.
"What happened after I left the court house?" James asked looking up at him.
"They're guilty, jury was quick with it, apparently they didn't have much a case. The sister on the other hand is having a physiological evaluation, they all had one but she was the only one who seemed to really be a nut job. The chances are in her favor that she'll be stuck in a loony bin until the end of her days. The other two got thirty three years in prison, there's no chance either of them'll get out any sooner.
"Thirty three years." James repeated, a much as he hated the men and wished them to be locked away for ever he knew that was impossible. It was attempted murder and you couldn't get life for attempted, oh wow, it felt so weird to say like that they tried to murder him.
"Yes, thirty three years, apparently the judge thought they deserved a little more then the normal sentence for attempted murder." He lowered his voice in saying it himself, as if it was a taboo. "But anyway, you won't have to ever worry about them again. You have my word on that… Now! I told Michael I would call him when you woke up, he stayed for about six hours before Cuddy told him to go home."
"How come you're not at home?"
He looked at him dumbly and didn't make a move to call his brother. "'Casue I work here."
"Oh, of course." James nodded. "So, before you run off to go call Mike, when can I get outta here?"
House shrugged. "I wouldn't see any harm in taking you home tonight but I'm sure Cuddy would want you to spend another night, just for observation."
"Yeah… I really just wanna go home or well not home per se, but back to your –" House never gave him the chance to finish his sentence.
"Jimmy." House said in a deep commanding voice. "It's home, okay? Now I think we all know I'm not good at this touchy feely gooey crap, but my house is your house. You've lived with me before and we're gonna do it again."
"I feel bad doing this to you."
"What's there to feel bad about?" House asked incredulously. "We're splitting the rent just like we did before, I'll even give you the bed for a while until you feel back up to speed but then your ass is back on the couch. We get to car pool to work, I get to hang with my best friend without having to beg him to hit the bar with me! It'll be great!"
"Who goes to a bar when you can just get drunk off your ass at home with a friend watching bad movies?" James smirked.
"Exactly!" House cried.
James snickered. "Alright, I'm living with you. But I will eventually find my own place."
"That's what you say now."
Stiffing a grin he waved his friend out of the room. "Just go call Mike and maybe if you run into Cuddy beg her to let me leave tonight."
"I'll see what I can do, oh and expect Forman, Chase and Cameron, it won't take long before the word spreads out that you're awake and they'll want to see you… so hide now."
"I'll keep that in mind." He smiled broadly and waited for House to leave the room and walk down the hall to the receptionist's desk, he must not have had his cell phone on him, or maybe he didn't have Michael's number.
James leaned back in the bed and sighed shifting the crisp sheets around him, why did the hospital always use the whole bottle of starch when they did laundry? He didn't really dwell on that thought for too long though, he had other things to mull over.
It was all over, for the most part at least, he still had a handful of therapy to attend they had one session but not much was really said. He wasn't exactly in an opening-up-of-the-soul type of mood that day. But now maybe he could, now that he knew the fate of his captors. He would still have to live with the scars and see them in the mirror everyday and see them whenever he looked down at his chest with a shirt off. Short sleeves were out of the question for a while, at least fall was coming now his whole summer had been spent in the hospital. That was just peachy.
But now he could get on with his life, sure he wouldn't be going back to work for at least two weeks but still. It would be nice to go out and start living again, he hadn't gone out with House on a Friday night and gotten drunk in what seemed like an eternity. Maybe he could even get more acquainted with Forman, Chase and Cameron over the time he was… incapacitated they proved that they cared. Inviting Cuddy would be weird, she was his friend but she was also his boss and she normally frowned upon them getting drunk.
Out of the corner of his eye he saw House walking back in the room. He threw his cane against the wall where his own was still sitting. "Called Michael, he'll be here in a half hour he's picking up your parents on the way. Cuddy is being informed, I wasn't the one to tell her the nurse did it behind my back and no doubt she'll bring the fabulous trio along with her."
"That's good," James gave a ghost of a smile as he stared off in space.
"What's wrong with you?"
"Nothing… just… I guess I'm just sorta happy." He gave a small laugh looking over at House.
He stared at him for a few moments which only made James chuckle a little bit. "Did you take the happy pills?" He asked.