It wasn't often that people gave Gregory House presents. So an anonymous, unmarked package on his desk was something that he found understandably suspicious. When he first saw it he paused in the middle of hanging his cane on his desk and narrowed his eyes at it, momentarily debating whether or not he should call it in as some sort of bomb threat. After all, he did he did have a lot of people who were, to say the least, not too fond of them and there was always a chance that one of them had recently gone psychotic and formulated a plan to kill him. But after a moment of considering this possibility his curiosity easily got the better of him and he decided that even if the conspicuous package was a bomb poking at it just a little wouldn't do any harm… he hoped.
Poking, however, revealed nothing about the box and quickly grew boring. The next step House's progression of present examination was to pick it up and shake it, except that would be a bad idea if it were indeed a bomb – which seemed less and less likely the more he thought about it – so he decided to skip straight to the third and final step: opening the package.
Although he wasn't technically a licensed surgeon and had little operating experience, House knew how to handle a scalpel – or, in this case, X-acto knife – with precision and skill that most people could only ever wish to possess. He cut the brown paper packaging with a skilled flick of the wrist, and then eagerly tore it aside to reveal the contents.
Fortunately – or unfortunately, if you were appraising the gift from an excitement perspective – it wasn't a bomb at all, but a folder; a manuscript, to be precise. Its title was written out in bold but simple black lettering: 'Medicine Man.' Then, just under that in smaller letters was the name of the author "Dr. Allison Cameron." For a moment House just stared at the name. It had been over a year since he had seen or heard from Cameron, not even Chase mentioned her anymore. He had wondered, on occasion, what ever happened to her and what she was doing in her life, but such musings were only ever in passing. Apparently she had started writing books, or at least, a book.
But this wasn't just any book. This was a book that, as he quickly discovered, was all about Gregory House.
He couldn't put the book down. For the entire seven hours that it took him to read it, he forsook everything but the papers he held in his hands; files, his team, Wilson, lunch, even sex with Cuddy were all abandoned in his obsession with the book he held in his hands. This, he supposed, was a tribute to the writing skills he never knew Cameron had. But although her writing was very good, that wasn't what really kept him glued to the papers for all those hours. What he really noticed wasn't how she had written it, but what she had written. It wasn't like the Cameron he knew at all. She described him as a genius, but didn't fawn over his intelligence and medical skills any more than necessary. She didn't dwell too much his rude and unethical behavior either, which he would have expected given what she had said to him during their last encounter. She did, however, reveal an unusually in-depth understanding of him not only as a doctor, but as a person. Frankly, he found it to be more than slightly unnerving. He usually was very good at judging people, but it seemed that he had grossly underestimated just how much Cameron had been capable of noticing. Little things that the average person wouldn't pay any mind to were exactly what she picked up on and cited as evidence in what he felt was an exposé of his psyche.
He had never been a very sentimental man; in fact, he made a point not to be. He didn't like to be nostalgic, to dwell on things that were over and done with and could no longer be fixed or altered, but as he read through the three hundred pages that his former employee had written about him, he found he couldn't help missing her just a little. Over the past year or so he had forgotten what she had brought out in him. Her values and personality had always been very much the antithesis of his own, and he had forgotten what that brought out in him. Dealing with her goody-goody morals, concerns, and over-analysis of his behavior had annoyed the hell out of him but, in retrospect he wondered if maybe she had improved him, just a little, as both a person and a doctor. And for a moment part of him ached with something terrifyingly close to longing for the days where she was his faithful employee, all wide-eyed innocence and blushing admiration for him. But the feeling lasted only a moment before it was gone, leaving the usual cynicism and indifference in its wake.