Summary: James Wilson gets a surprise, and he knows just who to blame.
Spoilers: none really, though mention of Amber, so it's ostensibly set in S5, but without the angst.
A/N: Unbeta'ed, though I did have someone read over it to see how she liked it. Since she didn't mention any grammar or spelling mistakes, I think it's safe.
Just a short little story that sort of came out of nowhere, and is surprisingly coherent, despite how tired I was when I wrote it. Let me know what you think!
James Wilson had always been called 'James' during his childhood. That was his name, and he'd never wanted any other name. He hadn't really cared about his name; it wasn't a name that was easily turned into a teasing schoolyard rhyme, and although he'd known a few other Jameses in his neighborhood growing up, he'd been the only one in his class with that name, so there was no confusion, no reason to differentiate between him and another James.
He was a respectable doctor, which was every Jewish mother's dream come true (as well as every prospective Jewish mother-in-law), and a respectable doctor needed a respectable name. None of his colleagues had ever called him Jim or Jimmy, or even James, for that matter; it was usually either Dr. Wilson, or just Wilson.
And that was fine with him. He liked his first name, and his last name... was his last name, and he had no real qualms with it. He'd had it his entire life, so he was used to it. It was familiar to him, so when someone called it out in a crowded room or a hospital corridor, he instinctively responded.
All three of his wives had called him James. Toward the end of the marriage, and especially during the divorce proceedings, some of them had called him several other, less complimentary things, but as for his name, they'd never changed it. Never given him a little pet name or anything like that - the closest he'd ever come to having a pet name was 'baby,' 'sweetie,' 'dear,' or 'darling.' All generic endearments that, while sweet, didn't incorporate his actual given name. Even Amber had just called him James, or, since she'd known him through House first, sometimes Wilson.
Now, he stared down at the large card he held in his hands, his vision blurring around the edges. It was a large piece of yellow construction paper. On the front there was an arc of green from one edge to the other, a third of the paper colored in green to signify a grassy hill. On top of the hill there was a figure, the kind of figure young children draw after they learn how to draw more than stick figures. The figure stood with his legs braced apart and his arms held high. At first he had thought the figure had a white cape, but after a closer look, realized it was a white doctor's coat, which made sense. Behind the figure were several other figures, much smaller than the central figure. He was pretty sure they were smaller because they were children, and not because of the artist's grasp of distance and perspective. All of the figures were smiling, and several of the little children figures didn't have hair.
Carlie, the 9-year-old artist, had explained when she'd given it to him earlier that some of the kids depicted had wanted him to know who they were, and since he only knew them without hair, that's how she should draw them.
It had taken him completely by surprise, since he'd just been doing routine rounds on his pediatric patients, but they had swarmed him and all shouted happy birthday. His birthday wasn't actually for another two days, but since he'd told no one - especially none of his cancer patients - about the upcoming birthday, he'd been quite surprised, and too stunned to do anything but accept their well wishes. And the card they'd made him.
Of course, if it weren't for the card, he wouldn't have known who had told them. He'd been at PPTH for over a decade, so most of the nurses probably knew when his birthday was, as well as who knew how many people in his department, and any of them could have told the children, or even just mentioned it to another adult and one of the children had overheard.
But he knew that wasn't the case. He knew the children had been told specifically that his birthday was coming up. There was only one person who would have told them what to put on the card. Only one person ever called him anything other than James, or Wilson.
His birthday card was addressed to: "Doctor Jimmy, Boy Wonder Oncologist."