I'm re-posting all the first 8, the 9th will be up soon. All have been edited.
Please R and R,
A Day Off
Cameron has a day off work and House is his usual nosy self...
He limped into his office and shut the door behind him. It had not been a great night with his leg, but the aroma of Cameron's coffee was sure to make up for that. Looking through the wall into the diagnostics room, he saw two of his ducklings crowded around the coffee machine, whispering to each other with forcefully quiet voices. He gradually grew more and more suspicious as they threw several nervous glances around them, not yet having seen him. Chase reached up into the cupboard and grabbed the pack of coffee, but before he could ruin the coffee maker, House had travelled over to him, and poked him in the back with his walking stick.
'How many times do I have to tell you not to touch the coffee maker? I prefer drinking coffee, not sludge; if I wanted sludge then I'd get Wilson to buy me a 'coffee' from the canteen. And don't even try to say you weren't going to make some – I know that look in your eye, it's the same when you see me writing on the board with a magical marker.'
Foreman and Chase simply looked at each other in a helpless manner, not sure of what to do or say.
'Where's the other duckling then? Cameron's usually in and has made coffee by now.'
Chase nudged Foreman's elbow, clearly trying to avoid an additional situation.
'She's not in today House.'
'What do you mean not in today? She never came to me for the day off.'
'She went to Cuddy.'
He gave no response other than a whoosh as he turned on his heel and the slam of the door, glad of a chance to go head to head with Cuddy at this time in the morning about something other than clinic. However, as soon as he entered the office, having scared the new assistant, Cuddy was straight on his case.
'House, go and do your clinic hours.'
'Why isn't Cameron here today?'
'She asked for a day off, and I cleared it. Go to clinic.'
'Why though, why is she off?'
'Go to clinic, and maybe I'll tell you later.'
'No fair mommy, I wanna know now.'
He pouted as Cuddy grabbed his arm and walked him to the clinic. She spoke to the receptionist quickly, before shoving him into an exam room.
'Don't let him disappear; he has too many hours to do.'
'Abuse! See what this so called doctor does to cripples like me?!'
The door was shut on his protestations, and he turned around, ready to sit on the bed and play with his PSP, but was faced with a patient instead…
An hour and 3 patients later, House peeped around his door. He was bored with clinic – the patients were worse than tiny children, and even the bed did not seem as comfy as they day before. So, he began to stage Operation Glass. The receptionist was still there, looking as attentive as she had before; she must have been new – nobody lasted as long as she did without more mugs of coffee. So House paged Wilson down to his room, and pulled him inside by his tie before he had even had a chance to knock.
'People will start talking you know.'
'Only if you kiss and tell Jimmy boy. Now, I want you to flirt with the receptionist; shouldn't be too hard, all you'll have to do is talk to her.'
'Now that's just hurtful, I–'
'Come off it. And while you're at it, make her face the other way too.'
'You're sneaking out, aren't you.'
'And the boy wonder's got it again! And don't worry, I'll keep your name out of it if the devil catches me. Go Jimmy, go, it's your big chance.'
Wilson rolled his eyes at House; it was easier at times like these to just do what he wanted rather than argue and defend himself. So he went and had a nice chat to Karia, and was about to put the Wild Card of coffee later on the table, but he saw House's limp disappearing through the main doors. With an apology of having patients to see, he too made his escape.
It did not take long for House to reach Cameron's apartment door, and he issued a sharp series of taps while he waited. The door opened, and a tired looking Cameron looked around the edge of it. She ushered him in, and waved a hand towards the sofa; he took it as a cue that he could sit down, so he did so, making himself at home and resting his right leg along the length of it. She took a seat in the chair opposite, running a hand through her hair before speaking.
'House, what are you doing here? You have two other perfectly good people in your department to help with any case you have, if you needed a consult you could have paged me, and it's my day off.'
'My, someone's grumpy today aren't they?'
'No, I just thought that maybe you'd leave me alone, on my day off, to get a little peace and quiet.'
'Simply from the way you answered the door, you were expecting it to be me.'
'Why are you here?'
'Why aren't you at work?'
'I took the day off, I cleared it with Cuddy, and I am allowed some leave every few years, even if it is only one day.'
House was surprised at her snarky-ness – she was learning well – but this did not deter him. He asked a question, wondering if she would lie or not.
'Why did you want the day off?'
'It's my birthday; I wanted a lie in and a long relaxing bath. I didn't want to have to wait on you guys in the office, making coffee; for once I wanted to put me first.'
House just looked at her, tipping his head slightly to one side before nodding. He then proceeded to simply sit on her sofa, taking in everything around him. The walls were painted a warm peach/cream colour, and there was a definite homey feel to everything; there were books strewn across the shelves from being picked up and placed back with speed, there was a pile of medical journals and reference books on the table, obviously in use. His mind grew still as he sat there, the silence surrounding him and Cameron. She took a deep breath and shifted slightly in her seat before addressing him in a calm tone, one betraying the fact she had little strength left.
'House, why are you here? It clearly isn't because my birthday, because not only would it be completely un-House-ian to give me a present, or even care about my birthday, but you don't have one,' she gestured towards his empty hands, 'and you now know why I'm not at work.'
House sat up straight in his chair, and turned to face Cameron completely.
'That's just an assumption and generalisation. Presents don't have to have a physical form; like a hug.'
'You don't hug anyone House, hell; you have as little bodily contact as is physically possible with everyone other than your hookers.'
'Did I say it was a hug? Now, contrary to your statement that I wouldn't care, it's your birthday, and I came here with that in mind. I knew exactly why you took the day off, and that you're now–'
'How do you know that?! No, wait, you read my file?'
'Clever duckling;' The sarcasm oozed through his words, something he was trying to contain on this trip, 'now come here for your present.'
He stood up and opened his arms; Cameron tentatively stepped into them, and he felt her relaxing into the embrace as he closed them around her, holding her close to his chest. He rested his head on her shoulder, burying his head into the crook of her neck. It felt so right to him to be holding her petite frame like this, up against him, his arms encircling her protectively. He felt her breath hitch as he rubbed his thumbs up against her waist, causing her to stand even closer to him. The apple scent of her hair was hypnotising, even to a man like him who never took any notice of tiny things like that. Cautiously he raised his head a little, stopping when his mouth was in line with her ear. He spoke in a low, husky voice, allowing a smile to ghost his lips when he felt her shiver in response.
'Cameron, you have to understand, I will probably rarely ever find these words again, and if I do, they'll take just as long as these ones have. But... Every time I've seen you recently, I've had to fight myself in order to stop myself from coming over to you and holding you like I am now. But my present to you is this.'
She leaned back so she could look into his eyes.
'House, I'm confused...'
'Don't be. I'll make this as clear as I can, and if you don't understand, then I'll explain fully.'
Keeping one hand pressing against her lower back to keep her flush with him, and raised his other to cup her face; he traced the line of her jaw with his thumb. Slowly, he leant in, giving his duckling plenty of time to pull away, before he captured her lips with his. He worked his hand round from her jaw to her ear, while tangled in her hair too. They kissed slowly at first, both a little shocked at what they were doing, before it became more passionate. Eventually, House pulled away and looked into the sea-green-cum-sea-blue eyes.
'I think so. Care to explain anyway?' She raised an eyebrow, looking deeply into his eyes.
'Me. I'm giving me to you. I've finally learnt to share, and I can think of no one I'd rather share myself with than you. Not even Wilson;' House looked around, to check they were alone before whispering, 'he gets so clingy sometimes!'
Cameron rolled her eyes, smiling. 'So. You're now mine then, huh? Well, thank you, I lo–ike my gift very much.' A light blush covered her cheeks at the mistake she had nearly made, and House saw this.
'I still haven't done it yet. I always make serious things a joke; what I'm trying to say, is that I may have been a jerk, I may continue to be a jerk, but Allison Cameron, I think I'm in love with you.'
He did not have time to react, cuss or in any way run away from the situation he had created, for which had to thank the body pressed up against him. With tears running down her face, Cameron had reached up and looped both arms around him, kissing his lips, and pulled him gently onto the sofa. She leaned on an arm to face him, and placed a small kiss onto his cheek and lay her head on his chest.
'This was the best birthday, ever.'