Fandom: House MD
Genre: From fluff to angst
Wordcount: 2 148
Feedback: Yes, please
Disclaimer: I don't own House MD or any of the characters. I'm just playing around a bit.
For: magie05, who wanted something with House and Wilson hugging.
Summary: or "Four Times House And Wilson Hug (And One Time They Don't)".
Author's Note: It's late and it's short, but at least it's finally done. The story stretches from the beginning of the boys' friendship to sometime before S1; the gap between every section is about a couple of years. That said, I'm not sure if there is anything else I need to bring up.
So, without further ado, please enjoy the fic!
The first time they hug it's an accident.
House is a very active man and is constantly in motion; Wilson finds it a minor exploit if he manages to drag himself to the gym once a week. When House found this out he said that if he and Wilson were even going to think about being friends, Wilson would have to get used to 'moving his lazy ass'.
That is the reason why the two men are roller-skating at the Woodwark Skate Park. House is gliding around the floor without any problems at all, while Wilson is leaning and gripping the nearest wall and refusing to let go.
"C'mon, Wilson! It's not hard at all," House says cheerfully as he whizzes past -- backwards, of all ways. "It's pretty much like ice-skating."
Wilson mumbles something inaudible and fumbles with his left hand for something to take hold of while looking at his feet.
"What did you say?" House asks as he whizzes past him again, forward this time.
"I said, I can't ice-skate either," Wilson says and tries to get his legs to stop shaking.
House rolls his eyes and comes to a halt in front of his friend. Before Wilson has time to protest, House has grabbed his hands and is dragging him out on the rink.
Wilson feels panic rush through his body and a split second later he loses control of his legs. With a yelp he falls forward and into House's arms. His arms end up around his friend's neck, and when his legs drift even further apart he tightens his grip. His thighs scream in protest but he can't get a proper foothold no matter how much he tries. He clings tightly to House to keep himself from collapsing completely.
House is dragged forwards by the sudden and unexpected weight but regains his balance almost instantly. He clasps his arms around Wilson's waist and with a heave lifts up his friend's body.
Wilson manages to get a foothold again and they stand still for a second, arms still around each other, adrenaline pumping through their veins.
After a few seconds Wilson slowly let's go, wavering slightly, and turns unsteadily to head back to the wall. Before he can get there House grips his wrist and after a couple minutes of heated discussion they finally come to an agreement.
They spend the next couple of hours playing teacher and student, with House dragging Wilson around the rink like a toddler, and when they are finished Wilson has at least learned the basics in roller-skating.
The second time they hug it's a scam.
Wilson holds open the exam room door and nods to the patient as she steps through the doorway. He closes the door behind him and idly surveys the clinic for a moment.
The waiting room is rather sparsely filled today and House seems to have conned his way out of his shift again. Shaking his head, Wilson heads for the nurses' station to pick up a new patient's file. Then he catches sight of House.
House has just exited the elevator, and is looking horribly dismayed. The reason why seems to be a short businessman that instantly follows House out of the elevator, holding a clipboard and scribbling something down.
House casts a glance at the nurses' station and when he sees Wilson, something flashes across his eyes.
"Jimmy!" House calls and raises his hand in an exaggerated wave. Wilson suspects mischief as House jogs up to him but doesn't give anything away and just smiles. The businessman eyes them suspiciously.
Then House continues, and what he says makes Wilson's brain shut down for a minute.
"There you are, darling! I've looked for you all day."
Before Wilson can splutter out an indignant protest, House has pulled him into an embrace. House nuzzles his neck and places his right hand on Wilson's shoulder and the other on his lower back, dangerously close to his ass. Wilson's arms hang uselessly at his sides -- he is too shocked to do anything but stare.
House pulls back after a few seconds but remains in Wilson's personal space, and doesn't remove his hand from the other's lower back.
"I've been meaning to talk about our date tonight," House says gently as he brushes Wilson's bangs aside with his free hand. Wilson blinks, trying to process what House just said.
"What?" Wilson manages weakly after a second's pause. House then smiles at him, a sweet and almost amorous smile that's both terrifying and oddly charming at the same time, although it's mostly terrifying.
"Our date tonight, we might have to reschedule it," House explains, by now practically gushing, still playing with Wilson's hair. Then he suddenly leans in closer, pressing their bodies close just like before, and places both of his hands on Wilson's lower back.
"Don't worry, this is just a ploy. The bore that has been following me around all day is a homophobe, I'm just doing this to freak him out," House whispers in Wilson's ear, and Wilson feels his breath hitch in his throat -- purely out of shock, of course.
"Okay," Wilson whispers back, still taken aback. He then sees movement out of the corner of his eyes, and House suddenly lets go of him.
"See you tonight, honey," House says with a quick caress of Wilson's cheek, and then turns around to leave.
Still feeling dazed, Wilson watches how the businessman that had been following House is storming off towards the hospital entrance, with House right up on his heels.
Wilson shakes his head and fights down a blush he hadn't been aware of until now. The nurse on the other side of the counter eyes him oddly but hands him a new file. Wilson takes it and turns around to continue his clinic duty.
The third time they hug it's a gift.
Wilson's and Bonnie's wedding is a beautiful event. Everyone is congratulating Bonnie for finally getting married, and they congratulate Wilson for finally finding the right woman.
Wilson accepts all the congratulations and handshakes, pats on his back, hugs and kisses on his cheek with a charming smile. But every other minute he looks around the room for House and tries to meet the other man's eyes. House is playing his role as best man perfectly and is even almost pleasant. Still, Wilson can't help but think back to the night before.
It was the end of a really good bachelor party and Wilson and House were the last to leave. House gave him a lift home, and they were standing in front of Wilson's front door when it was time to say good-bye.
"I guess I'll see you tomorrow, then," House said, and actually seemed awkward. Wilson wasn't quite sure how to respond to that and just when he was about to say something House offered his hand to him.
Wilson stared dumbfounded for a moment, but shook House's extended hand nonetheless, convinced that this was some sort of joke.
Suddenly House pulled Wilson towards him so that they were pressed close, their clasped hands trapped between their upper bodies. Flabbergasted, Wilson didn't know what to do when House laid his other arm around his shoulders and buried his face in the crook of Wilson's neck.
It was an embrace, undeniably affectionate with a tinge of desperation to it. It wasn't comfortable in the sense that the angles were rather awkward and body parts dug into others, but it felt nice.
Then House released him, muttered a quick good-bye and left.
"James?" Bonnie says and James is yanked out of his reverie. He smiles at her and kisses her on her cheek. They are wife and husband now. He should be laughing and cheering, not being able to stop thinking about the upcoming wedding night and honey moon.
But despite all the shoulds and shouldn'ts, Wilson can't help but glance over his shoulder to see House leave.
The fourth time they hug it's never accomplished.
It is during the aftermath of the infarction and after Stacy's leave. Ever since she left, the duty to take care of House somehow fell solely on Wilson.
It's not that Wilson dislikes his friend -- really, he loves House without reservation -- but he just can't stand having all of House's anger, disappointment and sorrow projected on him. Every day consists of fights after fights, cruel words and challenges. Wilson loves House, he wants to be there for his friend, but it's starting to tear him apart from the inside out. He understands why Stacy left, and if he didn't care so damn much he would leave too. But he doesn't. He just can't.
House has finally fallen asleep, probably with help from all the drugs in his system, and Wilson looks at him from the doorway. The heaviness inside Wilson feels worse than it has for days and he feels like he has almost reached a state of lethargy. Right then he wants nothing more than to slip down under the covers, wrap his arms around his friend and hold him as tight as he can while he breaks down and cries.
His fingers itch to reach out, his legs to close the distance, but he resists the urge. Of all the reasons why he shouldn't, the fact that House wouldn't let him is the most imminent.
So he keeps his hands to himself and leaves the room.
The fifth time they hug it's a comfort.
They are standing in the living room, several yards between them, posing like two opponents in a clichéd western face-off. One second they are yelling from the top of their lungs at each other, the other they are glaring in silence.
Wilson's whole appearance is frantic and disheveled; there is nothing boyish or charming about him now. He is citing through all the reasons why House is miserable. He yells about how House is trying to self-destruct, pushing people away, overdosing the pills, drinking too much, isolatinghimself, is becoming unnecessarily bitter, wasting his life away.
House leans heavily on his cane, his whole figure slumped. His face is twisted into a deep scowl and as he speaks he alternates between almost hissing and full out yelling. He throws all Wilson had thrown at him right back at him, listing off the reasons Wilson's miserable; that Wilson is a fraud, a hypocrite, that he finds a perverse pleasure in other people's suffering, that he lies, manipulates, and is self-righteous and smug.
They have been emotionally stripped bare naked, their ugliest features laid plain open to the other. Sore points are being stabbed and barely healed wounds are being torn open. The barely concealed frustration that has been lying between them for so long has been ignited; fear, blame and resentment are tossing back and forth.
As the yelling becomes louder and the attacks sharper, they unconsciously start to move closer to each other. After a while they are practically in each other's face.
Wilson isn't sure what causes it; maybe it's the tactless comment about the infarction, or maybe it's just the last straw. Whatever it is, it makes House snap and actually get physical.
Suddenly Wilson is pressed up against the nearest wall. Both of House's hands are on his shoulders; the cane lies discarded on the floor. House's face is just an inch from Wilson's own and they stare at each other despite almost becoming cross-eyed.
The room is silent now apart from the harsh breathing of the two men. House has crossed a new line; even if their fights contain threats of physical violence, they never do touch each other.
As the adrenaline in Wilson's body slowly subsides, he is overwhelmed by exhaustion. The anger is still there, but it has turned dormant and is replaced with a resigned sorrow. On instinct and without thinking, Wilson tips his head forward and rests it on House's shoulder, closing his eyes.
He feels how House tenses, how his friend stops breathing for a second, and Wilson is just about to pull away and survey what damage he has done when House relaxes. The grip on Wilson's shoulders lessens, and together they take a step away from the wall.
House instantly buries his face into Wilson's shoulder and moves his hands to wrap his arms around his friend's body. Wilson does the same, placing his hands on House's upper back, and holds tight.
The embrace isn't tender or affectionate. The grip they have on each other is bordering on crushing; it's like they're almost forcing their bodies to fuse together.
Wilson isn't entirely sure what House wants to say with the hug, but for Wilson it's an apology. In his mind he apologizes for all the times he has let House down, and tightens his grip on House just a little more.