Disclaimer: A mid-ep or a what-if-post-ep fic for S3 Cane & Able. House/Cam.

A/N: This was written awhile ago actually, probably when I first saw the episode - but I was watching some episodes and decided to find it and finish it, so here it is. This is a what-if scenario, what if Cuddy didn't tell House. Thanks to Izzy and Mar, and thanks to you for reading :)

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She's at his door at God knows what hour, hair curly and askew on her head, clothes crooked - still damned beautiful. He ignores the fact that he's angry he's been woken up because he's already inexplicably pissed. He deduces he's really (actually) not in the mood for dealing with whatever this may be.

"I-I know it's late," she says, eyeing her keys, "but I couldn't sleep..."

So you decided to wake me up, he wants to snap but doesn't - it's either the alcohol or the hour giving him restraint - or her.

The fiddling of keys is especially grating, and so a hand reaches out and stops it. He's never known a simple touch to be so electric, but it's duplicated by the meeting of their eyes. "Why are you here?" He rumbles.

She sighs heavily - he can practically see the weight evaporating from her frame, "The guy is better..."

"The kid?" He frowns.

"No, the guy - whatshisname," she shakes her head, obviously frustrated that she can't remember his name - not that it matters because House wouldn't know anyways. "Richard - brain cancer guy."

He rolls his eyes abandoning the doorway in search of more scotch. "Tendon lengthening surgery can do wonders," he calls from the kitchen. She tentatively steps inside and quietly pushes the door shut. Absently she wonders how long he's been here - she has only known for a few months.

She slips the cord of her keys into her back pocket, "No," she sighs again, needing to get it out so she can sleep at night, "Cuddy... Cuddy gave him cortizol, he was in the clinic - walking, using a walker, but... I just - needed to tell you."

He slowly meanders back out of the kitchen - it's still odd seeing him without a cane.

"How long have you known?" He asks quietly.

She exhales, "About a week - he needed viagra and a prescription for physio so he could claim it on medical, Cuddy - and Wilson - told me not to tell you but I-"

"Couldn't sleep at night," he finishes.

"Right." She says cooly, not in the mood for his mind games too.

He smiles smugly as she turns to leave. Her loyalty astounds him - the world could end and she would still be standing at his side.

.

Fin.