Title: Starting Now 1/?
Warnings: none, really, unless you count angst.
Summary: She was scrubbing him off her skin, desperately trying to forget the thoughts and feelings he evoked out of her. They wouldn't get to her again, never again.
A/N: This is my first House and Cameron story so I really hope you guys like it!
I want to crawl back inside my bed of sin
I want to burn the sheets that smell like your skin
Instead I'll wash them just like kitchen rags with stains
Spinning away every piece that remains of you.
Starting Now-Ingrid Michaelson
Cameron got home after a long day at work. She had patients all day, every hour, and she was beat. Not to mention that House decided to drop by and bother her until she physically pushed him out. She still didn't understand why he went to see her when in all reality he didn't have to. She didn't work for him anymore, didn't really have much to do with him, and yet he still came around often enough. She ran a hand through her hair and sighed, pushing back her thoughts of House that seemed to be consuming her brain more and more lately. Cameron didn't want to admit it, but those blue eyes still had a way of getting to her. She dismissed it as nothing though, convincing herself it was just because she hadn't seen him in a little while and so she lost her willpower at times. That's all it was, that's all it was going to be.
When she walked in the whole apartment was dark save for candles scattered around the room. They were on almost every piece of furniture, igniting the would be dark apartment to a soft glow. She took a couple steps and stopped, something crunched slightly as she walked. When she looked down, she almost gasped. There were rose petals all spread out on the floor. Cameron looked ahead and saw tons more. Her heart started beating rapidly. She tried to think back to their anniversary, it wasn't today. They didn't celebrate much else so this could only mean one thing…oh God.
Chase emerged from the bedroom, a huge grin on his face. It just made Cameron's stomach turn more. He couldn't be doing this; it was too soon, way too soon.
"Hey," He said softly, obviously trying to mask the nervousness he felt. "How was you're day?"
He took a few steps towards her and Cameron fought the urge to take a few back.
"Fine," She replied looking around the apartment, "Chase…what is all this?"
"You're surprise," He said happily and stepped right in front of her so they were inches apart.
Chase didn't wait for her to respond, he went right into the speech he looked like he had prepared for months before. All Cameron could do was stare at him and hope her face didn't look too scared. Judging by the way he was looking hesitantly at her, she wasn't doing a very good job.
"Cameron," He began, taking her hands in his and looking her straight in the eyes, "It's been such a long road for us, first being under House's thumb for three years…"
Cameron really wished he didn't bring House into this.
"And then sleeping together one time, then more times, until we were actually in a relationship. I probably don't have to tell you this because it was almost certainly obvious, but I've loved you ever since you started working here. I know you are hesitant about making the first step because of what you went through before but, I love you Allison, so much so that this was the easiest step for me to make. I want to spend the rest of my life with you." Cameron's heart melted a little at his speech but still didn't know if this was what she wanted. She watched as he got down on one knee. "Will you marry me?"
All the air in the room left as soon as Chase uttered those words, those very words that froze her completely on the spot. Marriage? They had only been going out for about three years. Then again, she did marry when she was young, but that was different. She loved Chase, she knew she did, but this just all felt too fast. Honestly she didn't really ever think of her future with Chase, just thought of her own at the hospital, working in the ER. And what about this whole thing with House she still had yet to get over? She didn't even know what it was. She thought she was over him but the more he came around the more she was starting to question her feelings for both him and Chase. But Chase worked so hard, and looked so loving in this moment that it was so hard to turn away from it.
She knew if she said no now she would lose Chase forever. This was about deciding her fate, her future, and maybe she was wrong. Maybe this was how it was really supposed to be. House certainly wasn't doing much to show her she meant anything to him, but Chase was. What was she doing still wasting her time on the same guy that broke her heart and stomped on it too many times to count?
She cleared her throat and squeezed his hands, getting ready to utter the very words that she was so afraid to say, "Yes."
He chuckled slightly and smiled wide, putting the ring on her finger. It fit perfectly. She managed a smile and he picked her up and spun her around, kissing her forehead, her cheeks and then finally her lips. The phone rang and Chase put her down. House immediately entered her mind. She walked over to see who it was. The caller ID flashed Forman, and she let herself relax. She looked at Chase questioningly, and he just shrugged.
"He helped me set it all up," He took the phone and began talking to Forman. Cameron could hear a 'She said yes!' scream from the hallway. Cameron smiled genuinely for the first time since she entered her apartment.
Suddenly her beeper went off. She fished through her coat pockets to find it but when she did she regretted it. It read 'Gregory House-come asap'. Why was he paging her anyways? She didn't work for him anymore. And why now of all times? Her heart constricted, and her mind took it as a sign this was a mistake. She took a deep breath and made a decision. Gregory House would no longer dictate her happiness, this was the final straw. She turned her pager off, put on a smile, and went to find Chase, her new fiancé and future husband.
The ER was quiet, allowing her to finally let reality sink in. Chase proposed to her two weeks ago, two weeks ago, and she still couldn't get it through her head that they were going to be married. That she was getting married. Oh God.
She still couldn't say the words out loud without her heart beating really fast and her head starting to hurt. This isn't how people are supposed to feel months before their wedding. As soon as she had said yes Chase began babbling on about how he had the perfect date but it's a little bit earlier than expected. When he uttered the month of May, Cameron just about passed out. It was so soon.
She nervously wrings her hands together, feeling itchy and uncomfortable.
She wished the ring didn't feel so heavy on her finger.
She hears the doors swing open and immediately hopes it's not House. She's managed to avoid him ever since the proposal and planned on avoiding him for as long as she could. She knows she won't be able to seem normal if he's near her. He would know something was wrong, and then she would most likely spill everything to him, resulting in nothing but consequences. Even though it was wrong and could be mistaken as still having feelings for him, Cameron still wanted House to think she and Chase had the perfect relationship. She didn't reveal much to him about their relationship, and he didn't really ask, but whenever she and Chase were around each other in the hospital Cameron was just a little bit sweeter towards her boyfriend. Chase of course didn't notice a difference; he probably was just appreciating the new attitude. She knew she wasn't so nice to him all the time and tried to change that, but time passed and nothing happened. She often wondered why Chase wasn't enough to change for.
It wasn't House walking towards her, but it was someone close enough. James Wilson entered her ER and he didn't look happy. She had sent him an invitation to her wedding about three days ago, knowing full well that he got it today.
He stopped a couple feet away from her, lingering towards her desk located on the side of the room. At first she thought he would just storm in and get out, but after a couple minutes of silence he spoke up.
"I got your invitation," He says calmly.
She looked up at him and gave him a small smile. "Good. I'd love it if you came."
"May 15th huh?" He questions, "Don't you think that's a little early?"
He had an accusing tone, one that she didn't like very much. The way he said it made it seem as if she wanted to get married as quickly as possible to avoid something, something like her feelings for House. Wilson was the one that could always read her emotion level, it was probably something he had gotten good at because of his previous wives, but it still worried her all the same.
"Chase liked the date, and wanted to get married as soon as possible. If it's what he wants, I'm all for it."
He nodded and stayed silent for a couple more minutes. She knew he was contemplating how to bring up the next subject he desperately wanted to discuss. Cameron knew it was coming, knew it ever since Chase proposed, and was mad that she still had to be concerned with House while planning her wedding. Now he managed to butt into her life without even saying anything, or even knowing what was going on.
"Did you tell him yet?" Wilson asks quietly, his eyes turned towards the floor.
She shakes her head, words not being able to form from her mouth. It wouldn't matter if they did anyways.
"You have to tell him," He urges, "You know he'll be upset if you don't."
"No I don't know," Cameron snaps as she shuffles papers around, now irritated. "House is House; he's never upset about anything. He chooses not to show his emotions, keeps them bottled up until they can't be bottled up anymore, which is usually the very last minute, and then explodes."
"So you're afraid of him exploding sometime before your wedding is that it?"
She sighs loudly, stops what she's doing, and turns towards Wilson. "I can't deal with him before my wedding Wilson. And besides, he's involved with Cuddy now, right?"
He nods, "I think so, but it's hard to tell these days. He hasn't been the same in a while."
Cameron almost cringes. She could tell he was changing, and not for the better. He had gotten harder, more bitter, more unwilling to change. He wasn't the House she had worked under, and a part of her was sad that that House was gone.
"I know," she admits, not bothering to hide her observation, "But it doesn't mean he's going to show any emotion before my wedding. I'm not expecting him to."
"Cameron," He says softly, grabbing her wrists lightly and making her look into his eyes, "It's going to mean something to him, even if he doesn't show it, it will affect him."
She sighs deeply. His words cut into her and she bears the pain.
Swallowing, Cameron breaks out of his grip. "He's not my responsibility anymore."
She begins walking away quickly, seeing someone waving her over to take care of a patient.
"He's not going to handle it well." He slips in before she can get away. Her stride stops momentarily, but she picks it back up again.
By the time she's done, Wilson is long gone.
Her shifts just about over, but she can't stop thinking about her conversation with Wilson earlier. Was he really right when he said he would be affected by it? She didn't believe it. House could be caring at times, but when it came to her it was different. He cared in a different way. She still believes he thought she was too fragile for him to fall into.
"You have to tell him."
Wilson's words are still ringing in her ears. She wished they would stop. She has enough to think about.
She hears the doors swing open again and knows for a fact this time that House is the one passing through them. She takes a deep breath, hoping he didn't hear, and pretends to look busy.
He limps over towards where she was currently sitting, and stands above her. His height makes her feel small.
"House," Cameron says softly, finally acknowledging his presence.
"Cameron," He snips back. She remembers how infuriating he could be and how much she could love and hate him all at once.
"What are you doing here?" She finally looks up at him, wishing she didn't. Those blue eyes are boring into hers and she forgets everything that's going on.
"So you're afraid of him exploding sometime before your wedding is that it?"
Wilson's words keep bringing her back to reality. This was what she was trying to avoid. These random visits from him were alarming, always unpredictable and always loaded with tension. She wouldn't be able to handle it on her wedding day.
"You're avoiding me," He says in that curious voice of his, "I came to find out why."
He says the last part so softly that Cameron thinks she's going to give in. But she knows if she does she will do something stupid, and she can't risk that right now.
She stands up abruptly and walks over to the other side of the room, pretending she was getting some papers. "I am not."
She can feel him nodding slightly at her reply. She has trouble focusing on the documents in front of her and prays he doesn't notice.
"You look tired," He observes, her eyes are baggy, her face worn, her shoulders slouched. He drops the subject, maybe because he sees how tired she is or maybe because he has an idea why. "Rough day down in the big bad ER?"
She hates how well he can still read her.
"I'm fine," She replies sharply, suddenly tired of his games. They never got her anywhere before, so why would it matter now? She was moving on in her life, she didn't need to deal with this, she was getting married. Her brain snapped awake at the thought of her marriage and the fact that he still didn't know.
"You're lingering. Is there anything else you needed?"
He shakes his head and doesn't say anything for what seems like hours. His eyes never leave hers though, and it makes her feel things she shouldn't.
"No," He finally says and begins to walk away. He stops right in front of the doors and turns around to face her again, that curious look resurfacing on his features. "Did Wilson stop by earlier?"
"No." She lies. This is right, what she is doing is right.
He nods once and pushes through the doors, already on his way back to his office. The thought crosses her mind that he might have been worried she wasn't talking to him and that's what launched his visit. It might have been enough before, but not now. She has other things to think about, other things to plan.
And Gregory House was not going to be in any one of those things. She turns off her desk light and sees him standing near the elevator. She slips away before he can see her.
"He's not going to handle it well."
She doesn't care, she keeps repeating over and over again. It doesn't matter now, its over, they're over, and the sad part is that it never really even started.