Author's note. Okay I know it's been a while but I've had a crazy busy for the longest. I think it had to do with school, work, other side projects that I work on, and the fact that I had knee surgery not too long ago and I was too hopped up on pain meds to focus. I feel like I should explain a few things. I posted this thing as a Cameron and Masters story and I haven't had a scene with the two of them yet. But I will and I would also like to state that this story takes place about three years after House gets out of jail. So I will fill in the details about that in my next story. So here's the next chapter.
The team got to work. Masters and Prichard had gathered the files and laid them out on the old school conference table. Chase and Cameron brought in the extra white boards that they needed while Bell was working with Wells with the case files of the deceased patients. House just sat in the back of the room eating another bad of chips.
"Hey you mind helping out?" Bell was starting to get a little annoyed with big brother. She was hoping that he might be able to help out a bit.
"Sorry, crippled. Can't do much." Apparently that was wishful thinking. But a smiled appeared on Bell as she replied back.
"I bet that's what your wife said." Bell just smile as Chase and Cameron chuckled slightly while Masters and Prichard just stared in shock. Wells just smile as he handed House a case file. House finishes the chip in his hand before he takes the file. House opens the file while still sitting down.
"Low blow, sis." He says to her as he looks at the file and doesn't even bother to look at her. "And don't even bother with the 'that's what's she said' joke. It's too easy." House still looking at the file as Bell still has a smirk on her face as she sets up the files.
"Hey you left the door open." Bell took the first file and began writing down the places the patients had been in the last three weeks.
"Yeah, and now I closed it. What are we looking for, again?" He asked as he flipped through the file. Bell couldn't tell if he was kidding or not.
"Looking for a connection. Same book store, same market, something that ties these people together. I mean come on we have three geniuses in here with a combined IQ of 500. Not to mention that everyone in here is obsessive and stubborn as mules. Pretty sure we can find one." Cameron and Chase both looked up as they were writing on their boards. Masters had already well on her way with her white board as she writes down the list of places the patients had gone to, so she did her best to keep out of the conversation.
"Well, it looks like we're going to be here for a while so I'm going to need coffee. Anyone else?" Cameron asks looking up and around. She nods and heads out the door. "I'll be right back" Cameron heads out the door. It's about a moment or two later before Chase decides to follow her out. Bell watches as the scene plays out in front of her. She grabs the bag of chips from House and asks in that sarcastic Housian tone.
"Gee, I wonder what they'll be talking about." House just shrugs his shoulders as he continues to read.
Chase goes running into the elevator and manages to slide inside before the door close. The two stood in silence for a moment as they were the only two people in the elevator. Chase was the first to speak. "So how are you?"
Cameron looks at Chase and then laughs, "We haven't seen each other in five years and all you ask is 'how are you?'" Cameron continues to laugh and shake her head.
"What? It's a valid question. And you haven't answered it, by the way." Chase stands there with his arms crossed and with a smug look on his face. Cameron just looks at him; she never could resist his charm forever. So she caves
"I'm good. You?" Cameron decides to turns the tables a bit.
"I'm alright. I realize now that I'm House's official note taker for this conference. Actually, I think I'm his bitch."
"I won't argue with that." Cameron smiles as Chase's eyebrows shoot up in surprise in response.
"Hey, you used to defend me you know. I was expecting a little sympathy." Chase shakes his head this time in disbelief.
"Well you wouldn't be here if you weren't now, would you?" Cameron smiles at Chase as she sees his eyebrows still shot up towards his hairline. Chase looks at her as he finally caves.
"Yeah you're right. What can I say; I respect the man enough to be his bitch." They both start laughing as the elevator doors open and they step out. Cameron walks slightly in front of him as she shows him to the cafeteria. There was one question that she's been dying to ask, and hopefully Chase would be the one to give her a straight answer.
"So, is it true that House drove his car into his dining room?" Chase stops as he's about to grab a cup for his coffee and he turn to Cameron who has a look on her face that says, 'you better give me a straight answer look.' Chase takes a breath as he answers.
"It was Cuddy's EMPTY dining room, before they got married. He served about a year in prison before Foreman got him out." Cameron wore a look of what was shock amusement and horror on her face. She shook it off before she began to speak.
"Okay you need to start from the beginning."
Masters stood at the whiteboards that had the places the victims had been to in the last few weeks. Knowing that there was a connection and that there were three geniuses in the room, this should be easy. But at the moment she appeared to be the only one working as House was on his phone talking.
"Rachel sweetie, I know I'm the one who checks your homework and I would love do to it right now, but there would be no way for me to do so because I can't see it." Masters loses her train of thought as she eaves drops on House's conversation with his daughter. "Well, I don't have a web cam handy at the moment. Rachel, you'll just have to let Marina check your homework now and if it's wrong when I get back, I'll have a word with you teacher." Masters wonders what happened there, how House was able to become such a loving, caring person. He actually sounded human when he was on the phone with his daughter. She was beginning to wonder if he suffered any head trauma from when he crashed his car. House was still talking. "I promise I'll make sure your mother never finds out. Okay?" House pauses for a moment to let Rachel answer, and then he responds, "I love you too. Bye." House hangs up the phone and looks back at Masters. "Do you listen in on everyone conversations, or our mine just that interesting?"
House waits for a response from Masters; it really had been too long since the long since she's had to deal with him. So she decided to be honest with because she knew that always drove him crazy. "Only the ones I find adorable."
House rolls his eyes at her thinking that this kid hasn't changed one bit. "Good God, you're hopeless. And you mind telling me what you're looking for? Because if there's no connection between these patients. And I doubt that you can too." He always loved messing with her; it was his way of testing her. He figured that if she can handle him, that she can handle anything. He remembered that she failed that test a long time ago, but he was hoping that she was a little more prepared this time. It's been a few years since she burst out of her bubble and was out in the world. He hoped that it did her some good. That being here, in this place, with his sister, did her some good.
"There is a connection, we just don't see it. This is too big o f a coincidence for them not to be connected." She knew what he was trying to do, always trying to push. Always trying to get the best out of her. She didn't realize it then what he was trying to do. She always thought that he just didn't like her, but he was really trying to push her and she was grateful for it. "All of these people got sick during the last few weeks, we know what made them sick, and we just don't know the source." Masters was actually starting to get frustrated with this. She hated leaving things unfinished; it just wasn't natural for her to do so.
"Any luck so far?" Bell came into the conference room with Wells following closely behind her. She felt that she needed to stretch her legs out and gets some air because she was going to punch someone if she didn't figure this out anytime soon. She looked at the room and noticed that Masters was at the board while House sat on the opposite side of the room. "Where's Prichard?"
"He went to get food. Some of us need more than cafeteria food to sustain nutrients." House shot back at his sister. "And where were you?" House decided to push his luck a little bit here since he never really had the chance to do so before.
"I needed some air. Where Cameron?" She knew that Cameron had invested a lot into this case and that she really could use her help at the moment.
"More than likely she in a janitor's closet somewhere having sex with her ex-husband." House just had to throw his two cents in just to see if he can get a reaction out of anybody. He was really hoping that it would rattle Masters just a little bit. There was no response, the only thing that happened was Bell shrugging her shoulders as she and Wells sat down at the conference table. House just shook his head in disappointment; he was really hoping someone would bite. Prichard then entered the room with three boxes of pizza and sets them down on the table. "What the hell took you so long?"
Prichard opens the top pizza box a grabs a slice of the pepperoni Chicago style pizza and takes a bite out of it. "I had to wait for them to bring me packets of the red pepper and parmesan cheese. They just got a new shipment. Prichard continued to eat his pizza as House and Wells both grabbed a slice. Bell just looked at the table and then back at Masters, who had that same look in her eyes. Masters spoke first.
"Didn't one of the patients say that they started to feel sick after…?" Bell cut her off.
"They got back from the dinner at a pizza place." She can't believe they missed something like that. Did they say where?" Masters grabs the file on the table and looks through it. She shakes her head. "Find out. Prichard, I need you to go find Cameron and find out from the rest where they went to eat." Both Masters and Prichard both run out of the room. Bell grabs the files on the table and looks through one while she throws file at House, who in the process dropped his bag of chips in the process. House just glares at her while she remains unfazed by his stare. Wells looks at Bell hoping that they found what they were looking for.
"You think they'll find the source?" He was really hoping they her team was that good.
"God I hope so." Bell, was really hoping that they found what they were looking for. House then got up out of his seat and tossed the file back at his sister.
"If not, you're still going to have a lot of sick people on your hands." House then grabs a box of pizza and limps out of the conference room.