Title: The strongest among you may not wear a crown

Fandom: "House MD"/"Supernatural" crossover

Disclaimer: not my characters; just for fun. Title from 3 Doors Down

Warnings: season one spoilers for "Supernatural"; takes place sometime mid-season two for "House"

Pairings: none

Rating: PG

Wordcount: 1630

Point of view: third


Robert first notices the ability after a blinding headache lasts three days. He moves past shock, denial, and acceptance to realize he can only heal superficial wounds and it doesn't take much to wear himself out. He also can't heal himself.

Once he'd gotten over the awe at having any ability at all, he's angry that it isn't a better one. What's the point of healing a paper-cut if you can't fix a dying heart?

o0o

It's three weeks after the ability first manifests when Robert has the dream.

He is back home, in the old house, watching Mum watch one of her soaps. She's got a can in one hand and a sandwich in the other, and she takes a bite, washing it down with a gulp.

"Robbie!" she suddenly yells. "Bring me chips!"

"In a moment, Mum!" he hears himself yell back.

Another voice says, "Sucked, didn't it, Rob." He turns and there's a man standing by the window. "Always taking care of your dear mommy. No help from anyone." The man tsks, shaking his head. "Lots of responsibility for a youngster."

Robert backs away, unsure. "Who are you?"

The man grins. "I could be your best friend, boyo," he purrs. His eyes flash golden as he adds, "Or your worst nightmare."

He steps forward and Robert backs into the wall. "Listen to me, Robert Chase," the man says. "You can heal anyone except yourself—you can heal any wound, any hurt, but there is a price." He smirks. "And I think you'll pay it, smiling all the way."

Robert wakes up trembling.

o0o

He's working in the ER when a busload of injured are brought in. Too many of them are children, and he works for hours trying to figure out what's wrong and what needs to be done. Robert comes across a little boy, no more than four, body broken in too many places. He won't survive the next ten minutes.

You can heal any wound, any hurt, the man from his dream says. But he's never been able to fix anything worse than a bruise, and the boy is dying.

But he has to try. He'll never forgive himself if he doesn't at least try. So he looks around for any witness, but everyone's busy dealing with other patients. This little boy was written off as a lost cause. Robert is the only hope left to him.

He places his hands on the boy, on his chest and his forehead, and delves deep into himself. He sends the power into the boy, trying to heal his insides first—superficial healing will mean nothing if he keeps bleeding internally. The organs re-knit, and the muscles, and Robert keeps sending the power. He's panting by the time the kid's heart beats on its own, and he collapses when the ribs realign. The kid will be fine if he gets immediate attention, so Robert yells, "Here!" and then lets himself black out.

o0o

Robert wakes in a hospital bed three days later. One of the nurses pages House; Cameron and Foreman come with him. The first question Robert asks, as House limps in, is "The kid?"

House just stares at him, but Cameron says, "He'll be fine."

Robert breathes a sigh of relief and closes his eyes, still exhausted.

"Don't even think about going back to sleep," House tells him, limping closer.

"Sorry," Robert whispers, unable to stay awake.

o0o

The yellow-eyed man is in his dream again, this time Mum's funeral. He sits next to Robert and says, "You did good, kiddo. That boy'll live a nice long life 'cause of you."

"Who are you?" Robert asks, watching his younger self sob silently.

"Like I told you, Rob," the man murmurs, leaning close, "your best friend. Or worst nightmare. Entirely up to you."

The man pats his back and adds, "It'll get easier with practice and time. One day, you might even be able to raise the dead. That'll be cool, right?"

Robert shivers. "I'm not a god," he says. "Only God can do that."

The man chuckles. "That's where you're wrong, kiddo." He leans even further in, putting his mouth right by Robert's ear. "You're not a god yet."

o0o

Robert wakes again only hours later, feeling better than he has since his power first manifested.

"That boy was dead," House says from the bedside chair. His blue eyes pin Robert in place. "He was dead when they brought him in." House stands, hands tight on his cane. "That is interesting, don't you think?"

Robert shivers, unable to meet House's gaze. "That must have been an incorrect diagnosis," he offers, voice shaky.

House scoffs. "Call this woman," he says, holding out a post-it note. "She'll be able to help you, and teach you how not to give yourself away."

Robert reaches up, taking the slip of paper. "You… you know?" he asks in a whisper.

House smiles, the first gentle expression Robert has ever seen on his face. Especially after all the times Robert has royally screwed up. "You're not alone, Dr. Chase," House tells him. "Don't think you are."

He turns and leaves, saying over his shoulder, "You get a week off. Don't waste it."

Robert looks down at the piece of paper. Written on it in House's too-neat-for-a-doctor handwriting are a phone number and the name Missouri Moseley.

o0o

Robert doesn't ring Miss Moseley until he's home from the hospital, ensconced on his couch wrapped in one of Mum's old quilts. He's already had three mugs of hot cocoa and tried dialing the number three times.

You're not a god yet, the yellow-eyed man says. I could be your best friend, or your worst nightmare.

There will be a price.

House has been an arsehole and a prick, but he's always right in the end.

"Been waitin' for you to work up the courage," Miss Moseley says on the other end of the line. "You come on down here, boy, and we'll get everything sorted out."

Robert agrees to go.

o0o

Miss Moseley in person is exactly as she was on the phone.

"Well, come on in," she says, bustling to the kitchen. "I put on a kettle, enough water for two. Cocoa?"

He follows in bemusement. "That would be fine," he replies. "Miss, who are you, exactly?"

She laughs. "I'm a psychic," she answers. "Didn't Greg tell you that?"

Robert raises an eyebrow. "Really?"

Miss Moseley raises an eyebrow right back. "You can heal people and you're doubtin' me?"

He shrugs. "I could heal people before."

She scoffs. "Not like this."

He looks down, studies her hardwood floor. "There's been a man in my dreams," Robert confesses. "He told me that I could be a god. Could raise the dead."

Miss Moseley walks over and looks him straight in the eye. "You already have." She leads the way to the den, carrying a tray with two mugs and a plate of chocolate chip cookies, and nods to the couch. He sinks onto it in a daze. House said the boy was dead, but Robert had felt his life. There'd still been something in his body to save.

"You gotta be careful, boy," she tells him, handing him a cup of hot cocoa. "The things that heal can also hurt." She settles into a chair across from him.

"What?" he asks, sitting up straight.

She smiles, a bit sadly. "The very same thing that lets you fix bodies, Dr. Chase," she says, "can also destroy them. Rewire them. Stop the blood, dry up the water, send the electricity our systems need away."

"No, I can't do that," he denies. "I don't want to do that."

Miss Mosley pats his leg. "I know," she says. "But not wantin' to and not bein' able to are very different things."

Robert sips his cocoa in silence, thinking about the past few months. The yellow-eyed man.

"How d'you know House?" he asks, settling on that one thing to anchor himself in the storm.

She grins, settling back against the chair. "He lived down the street for a while, years and years ago," she says. "I've always had my gift and he found me fascinatin'." She shrugs.

He sets down the mug. "The yellow-eyed man," he starts, "from my dreams. Is he bad?"

Miss Moseley nods. "Not the worst, but close. You need to be careful, boy. He's twisted, lyin' like we breathe."

Robert slumps down, drumming his fingers on his thigh. The knowledge isn't really a surprise, but he still finds he's disappointed.

They sit in silence for a few moment, Miss Mosely sipping her cocoa. When Miss Mosely speaks, Robert startles.

"You know that your mother's death wasn't your fault?"

Robert looks away. Of course it was. He should have taken better care of her.

Miss Moseley sighs and mutters, "What is it with the pretty ones, always takin' too much blame onto themselves? Honestly." Robert looks at her, wondering what she means, but she just waves a hand. "Don't worry about that. We should get started on how to keep yourself from burnin' out, boy."

He nods, setting aside his mug. "What do I do?"

She holds out a hand and he places his palm on hers. "Just breathe," she says. "Let me in. We need to start building some walls in your mind."

Robert closes his eyes and inhales deeply, giving her permission as he lets the breath out.

"Don't be afraid," Miss Moseley tells him. "Trust me. You can do a great good for the world."

There will be a price, the yellow-eyed man said.

That boy will live because Robert healed him. "I'm not afraid," he says softly, looking into Miss Moseley's eyes. "I want to… I need to learn control."

She smiles, squeezing his hand. "Then let's start, baby."