The number three

The number three

House sneezed as he walked into his office. Cameron, Chase, and Foreman looked at him. He sneezed again. House acknowledged their presence with a nod of his head.

Cameron stood up. "Are you sick? You sneezed three times."


"Four times…" she said and backed away from House. She didn't want to get sick either.

House shook his head. "I'm not sick. I just keep sneezing a lot… and I don't know why," he said and went over to the coffee pot.

Foreman looked up from his laptop. "Why?" he asked.

He whipped around and glanced at Foreman. "If I knew then I wouldn't have asked you… Idiot," he said and poured a cup of coffee. He took a sip of his coffee and then sat down at the table. "So. Differential diagnosis."

Chase was very confused. They didn't have a patient currently.

Cameron was also confused. "For which patient?" she asked.

House stood up and wrote in huge letters on the white board, "DR.HOUSE" He put the cap back on the marker and sat back down at the table, taking a sip of his coffee.

"A differential diagnosis for sneezing?" she asked.

He sneezed. "Yes," he said.

Cameron scoffed. "There could be more than three thousand possibilities!"


"Get to work on that," he said.

Chase shrugged. "Allergies?"

House nodded. "That could work," he said and wrote 'allergies' on the board.

"House," Cameron said, "this is stupid. It's spring. A lot of people have seasonal allergies. Go take a Claritin and get over yourself!"

He engaged in a deep-thinking pose. "Uh… no. Figure out what's wrong with me before noon, or you're all fired."

Chase looked at the clock. "It's already noon," he said.

"Well," House said with a smirk, "I guess you're all fired."


Wilson looked at House like he was insane. House was sitting on the edge of his desk, ranting on about sneezing. "Why are you so worried about this sneezing thing? It's allergies."

House sneezed again. "If I was actually allergic to things then I would be convinced that it was allergies, but since I'm not…"

"You're making your team think of stupid reasons as to why you sneeze,"


House nodded. "Exactly."

Wilson nodded. "Brilliant. So, what is this going to prove?"

"Why I'm sneezing," Achoo! "so much," House said and sighed. Sneezing a lot really hurts after a while. "Wanna go get lunch?" he asked Wilson. Of course, he would pay for the meal.

He rolled his eyes. "I'm working, House. Go annoy Cuddy or something," Wilson said and started writing again.

After a long sigh, House hopped off of Wilson's desk. He sneezed again.

"Bless you," Wilson said.


"Bless you again," he said again.


"Bless you… for the third time,"

Achoo! Achoo!

"STOP!" House screamed. It seemed as if every time Wilson said 'bless you' he would sneeze. Suddenly, House was curious. "Say 'bless you' again,"

Wilson shrugged. "Bless you,"


"Oh my God," House said. Why was he sneezing every time Wilson said bless you? "Wait a couple seconds and do it again."

After a moment, Wilson said it again… and House sneezed.

"Holy crap!" House breathed. He was starting to get dizzy from sneezing so much.

Wilson was curious, as well. "Why do you keep sneezing every time I say 'bless you?'"


"I don't know," House said. This was beginning to get very interesting. "If I sneeze every time you say that, then there must be other words as well. Try random words and see what happens!"

Wilson quickly said random words. "Uh… Six. CD. Rubber Duck. Giraffes. Bowling balls. Ugly Betty. General Hospital. Zebra. Allison Cameron,"

Achoo! "Say that again," he said and Wilson did as he was told. Achoo!

"Bless you,"


"Allison Cameron,"






House was really pissed off. "STOP SAYING CAMERON!" Achoo!

"Bless you,"


"STOP!!" House screamed as loud as he could.

Wilson laughed. "I'm sorry, but this is too funny… CAMERON!"


"No. It's not funny!" House protested. But, even though it was beginning to become painful, he wanted to know more 'sneeze' words. "Say more words," he demanded, hoping to find each and every word he sneezed at, to see if there was a connection.

Wilson grabbed a pen and a piece of paper. He wrote down 'Allison Cameron' and 'bless you'. "Let's try numbers… One. Two. Three," Achoo! "Coincidence or not? Three," Achoo! After a couple of seconds, "Three." Achoo! He wrote 'three' on the list.

House looked at the list and sneezed. Wilson laughed. He sneezed just looking at the words.

"Want me to go get a dictionary?" Wilson suggested. That way, they could go through every single word and make a complete list.

He shrugged. "Why not. I have nothing better to do,"

So, they got started on that.


After three hours, they had gone through every word, number, or name that they could possibly think of. Their list was simple:

Allison Cameron

Bless You




Any number with 'three' in it

Wilson raised an eyebrow. "Wanna test it?" he asked.

House shook his head. "Not really. We have to figure our why I'm sneezing every time I hear, see, or have anything to do with these words," he slowly limped back and forth in Wilson's office. "We know it's not allergies…"

"We know you're not faking it, either," Wilson said.

This was true. House did lie a lot, but this particular thing was no joke.

House smirked. "Maybe I'm allergic to those words."

Wilson rolled his eyes. "Maybe it's just nothing,"

"This isn't just 'nothing', Wilson. Why else would I sneeze at those words?"



"Ah ha!" House pointed at Wilson. "See? It isn't just nothing."

Wilson sighed. "Maybe you're just cursed. God is punishing you for all the horrible things you have done."

House nodded limped over to the door. "I'm sure that's the answer, Jimmy," he said, left the room, and went down the hall into his office.

Cameron, Chase, and Foreman weren't in there. Maybe they had gone home for the night. House swing his cane around a few times and thought of all the reasons for sneezing at certain words.

He couldn't think of any. Maybe there aren't any possibilities. Maybe he is just cursed… and maybe pigs can fly.

There was a knock at his door. It was Wilson. "What?" he barked. He hated it when Wilson annoyed him.

Wilson walked in the office. "Hi, I was just here to see if your three team members, including Allison Cameron, were presently available. Allison was in my office when she sneezed thirty-three times and so I said 'bless you' thirty-three times. Do you know why she sneezed thirty-three times? It's really annoying to hear her go 'achoo' thirty-three times."

By now, House had sneezed so many times, he was getting woozy. He had fallen to the ground. "Stop, Wilson. You're going to give me a heart attack!" he exclaimed and got back up with the help of a chair. "God, Wilson! You are such an asshole."

"Finally, the great Doctor Gregory House has fallen. To what? Sneezing? That's pretty weak." Wilson said. He finally had a chance to get back at House for all the shit he has done.

House looked at him with anger burning inside. "I don't know if you know this, or not, Wilson, but sneezing hurts."

"Achoo." Wilson said. Revenge is sweet.

Oh, and karma is a bitch. Achoo! House sneezed again.

House sat down in a chair and looked at Wilson. "Go away," he demanded. House had lost this battle.

Wilson smirked and walked away. "The sneezing is an odd coincidence," he called out behind him.

House sighed and walked over to the white board. He erased all of the possible reasons, and wrote in huge black letters: "I AM CURSED"