disclaimer: no own

Dr Gregory House sat in bed listening to the silence. It flooded his mind and overwhelmed his senses. No rustling sounds, no gentle snores coming from the living room. No ringing phone, no answering machine coming on, no voice on the machine pleading him to pick up or call back. Nothing. Just silence. It had been three months since Wilson had left, had disappeared into the night like an alley cat drifting off into the shadows. The man that House had come to rely on almost as heavily as he did his cane was gone. No goodbye, no explanation. Just gone.

House sighed and rolled over in bed. The first few weeks after Wilson's disappearance he hoped and waited. He had sat up at night and waited for the phone ring. He had waited for a knock at the door. He had waited and hoped for any sign that his friend was still out there and would be coming back. But as the weeks turned to months House had stopped waiting. Hope had given way to a bleak sense that something was lost. Instead of listening for a knock at the door House listened to the sounds of loneliness that echoed across his apartment.

"Enough of this shit." House muttered to himself. He'd rather die than have people know what he was feeling. Even alone in the darkness he tried to cover his emotions. But as the days and weeks passed with no sign of his best friend he found it harder and harder to keep things locked inside. He found himself spending more and more time shut away in his apartment, avoiding the concerned looks and prying questions of his employees and co-workers. But he couldn't sleep and he couldn't deal with the quiet of his apartment. He decided to head to the hospital. Maybe he could get some sleep there.

------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

"House? What are you doing here?" Cuddy stood in the hospital lobby. House hadn't expected the dean of medicine to be there at such a late hour.

"I work here don't I?" House tried to cover his emotions with sarcasm. He cringed at the sympathetic look Cuddy gave him. Why did people keep looking at him like a child who had just lost his favorite stuffed toy?

"Do you want to go get something to eat? It's too late to be hanging around this place." Cuddy spoke softly as if House were a lost child in a department store.

"What's your problem?" snarled House. "Why are you acting like my mom just died? I am fine. I was bored and all my best porn is here on my computer."

"House." Cuddy continued to speak in the same aggravating tone. "It's okay to admit that you miss Wilson. I know this must be really hard for you."

"Well if I start missing him you will be first to know." House turned his back on Cuddy and started to head to the elevator.

"House…wait" Cuddy called after him. House ignored his boss's plea and pushed the elevator button. Why wouldn't people just leave him alone?

-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

When House reached his floor he instinctively walked past his office and stopped at Wilson's old door. He noticed that it was slightly open and a light was on. His heart raced as he slowly pushed open the door. "Wilson?"

"Um…Dr House. Hi." A couple of young interns stood surrounded by packing boxes.

"What the hell are you doing in here?" House growled.

"Um..Dr..Dr Cuddy told us to come and pack..pack up in here. So someone else can use this office." The kid looked as if he might wet his pants.

"Well you tell Cuddy that Dr House told you to get the hell out." The interns stood there staring at him like deer in the headlights. "I mean it. Shoo!"

The interns scattered like mice fleeing a hungry predator. House sat on the familiar sofa and opened one of the boxes. It was filled with Wilson's stupid teddy bears. House pulled a bear from the box. "Remember how mad you were when you thought I tossed this one into the dumpster Jimmy?" he said aloud. "You spent all day digging around in the trash trying to get it back. I'll never forget the look on your face when you found out I had the thing stashed in my desk the whole time." House laughed to himself remembering Wilson standing there, his clothes covered in stains, face turning redder by the minute. "You smelled worse than the homeless guys that come into the clinic."

House stared at the bear in his hand. The bear's brown eyes reminded him of Wilson. It had the same goofy look on its face too. House scoffed in disgust. What the hell was he doing sitting there with a stupid bear in his hand? He got up and started to toss the bear into a nearby waste basket. But something inside him just couldn't let go. He stuffed the bear into his coat pocket and sat down back on the couch. This is where Dr. Chase found his boss several hours later.