Sorry for the long awaited update! Life has just been so hectic, as HappyDaysAreHereAgain can testify. In advance, please forgive any typos and/or sentences/words that don't make sense. I kind of sort of wrote this in France. Where I was speaking French for a month… You follow?
Just before seven in the evening, the door to House's townhouse swung open and in stepped a very cold Stacy. The heating in her car had broken, and she'd almost froze on her way home. She wasn't very appropriately dressed for the weather- under normal circumstances; she preferred to look more stylish when arriving at her office then keeping warm. She never really had a reason to dress that way anyway- she was pretty sure she'd survive the 5 minute walk from her car to her office and vice versa. That is, until her heating failed.
Right now, all she really wanted to do was curl up next to House with a nice bowl of hot soup. Goosebumps raced up and down her frigid body at the thought as she took off her water-heavy coat and boots.
"Home," she announced in a tired voice, fed up with the day and in a crappy mood. She felt her hair- soaking wet. She groaned; she looked (and felt) like shit. She passed House on her way to change. He was sitting on the couch, the TV volume on low. He didn't acknowledge her, and she wasn't in the mood to pester him for affection. She entered their bedroom and closed the door, peeling off her soaked clothes.
Feeling less cold but not less tired, she opened the door and walked out into the hall. She glimpsed at House at the end, hunched over something. She walked up behind him.
"Jesus Christ Stacy! Did you have to drag in snow into the whole friggin' apartment?" He growled at her, staring at the small puddle that had formed near the door.
Stacy crossed her arms, irritated. "It's one small puddle, Greg. Calm down; I'll clean it up."
He ignored her, muttering to himself. Fine, Stacy thought. She whirled around and headed towards the kitchen, fully intending on making herself the bowl of hot soup she'd been craving all day. She didn't feel like dealing with House right now. She opened the pantry door, expecting it to be full, as today would have been the day House had gone grocery shopping. Instead, it was nearly bare: a box of macaroni and cheese, a loaf of bread, and a package of pasta. Anger flared up inside of her, and she didn't bother to repress it.
"Didn't you go grocery shopping today?" She yelled from the kitchen.
"No – too much snow," Came the nonchalant reply. This caused the anger to burn deeper. She was the one who was relied on to bring in steady income, as House had just been fired from his job after the New Year. She was the one who trekked out every morning to assure they had enough money to live, come rain or shine. He was the one who stayed at home doing chores, as he was the one unable to maintain a job.
The selfishness in his words angered her more. She had to drive 40 minutes just to get to work every day, but he couldn't manage 5 minutes to the store! And he told her that he didn't have enough time? She grabbed the macaroni and cheese and started the stove, stomping out as she waited for the water to boil.
Once she got to the couch, though, all her will to argue drained out of her. She was just too tired to fight today. She longed to curl up next to House and feel his strong arms and warm breath surrounding her as she gently dozed off. She scooted closer to him, lifting his arm and putting it around herself as she curled her legs up underneath herself, leaning on him.
House recoiled, wrinkling his nose. "You're all wet, don't touch me! And you smell like wet dog." He pushed her away. Stacy was taken aback; hurt briefly registering on her face before fury stormed over.
"You son of a bitch!" She snarled, leaping off the couch and stomping into the kitchen just as the water started to boil over, ironically reflecting her emotions. She stayed in the kitchen until her hot pasta was ready, but she stubbornly refused to calm down. She sat on the opposite end of the couch, glaring up defiantly at House as she spooned up her pasta. At one point, she was so furiously planning comebacks that she didn't pay attention and the scalding contents spilled onto her new black sweater.
"Shit, shit, shit!" She moaned, feeling terrible. Today was most definitely not her day.
"Shut up!" House hissed, angrily pointing at his show. "Can't you see that I'm trying to watch?"
Stacy's jaw dropped open in surprise before clamping shut, her eyes shooting flames at him. With a hardy "humph", she got up and headed into the kitchen (again) to clean up.
House regretted saying that, but his own irritation was flaming. There was no one else to take it out on except for Stacy, and she didn't deserve it. He was just mad at his hopeless situation. He'd grown up with the mentality that the man should support the women financially, not the other way around. Stacy being the sole cause of the income made him feel as if he was accepting charity, and, as seen through his hated father's eyes, that he was failing. He should apologize, but he was too tired to, and too proud to be wrong.
"While you're in there, can you get me a bag of chips?" He called. Stacy snatched the chips and came back out to where he was sitting, thrusting the chips at him. "There you go, sir," She mocked.
"Jesus, watch it!" Frustration tinted his voice as he grabbed the chips out of her outstretched hand.
This was the last straw for Stacy. Blinded by anger, she planted herself in front of him.
"That's it! Get out!" She barked.
House looked up at her defiantly. "It's my place."
This drove her into a frenzy. "You selfish little bastard! I'm the one bringing in all the money allowing us to keep this place! So get lost!" She pointed an accusing finger.
"Fine! Keep your pathetic money. I don't need your charity!" He rose to meet her, anger flaming in his eyes.
"Good riddance!" She spat, whirling around and stomping off to the bathroom, slamming the door so loud behind her the decorations on the walls shook. Furiously, House jammed a few clothes into a bag and many more beer bottles, slamming the fridge door just as loudly. A picture fastened to the fridge floated slowly down to the floor, landing right side-up on the tiled floor. Despite the anger welling up inside of him and his haste to leave, House bent down and picked it up. It was a picture of him and Stacy at one of their first parties together. She was laughing at something and he had one protective arm over her shoulder, a beer in the other hand. Ache flooded his emotions and he ripped up the picture, watching trancelike as the ripped pieces fell individually to the ground. He left them there and stormed out, making sure she knew he'd left with a final slam of the door. He planned to sleep in his car; it felt like he had nowhere else to go.
Stacy slumped on the bathroom floor, fighting hard to choke down her tears as silence settled. Since she had been small, Stacy had found tears sprung too easily to her eyes. She'd learned to repress it with anger, which she found easier to control. After awhile of doing nothing much on the floor except thinking, Stacy gently stripped herself of her clothes, slipping into the shower. She turned on the hot water, sighing as it hit her trembling body. It wasn't exactly like curling up to House, but it was a damn near second. She wondered vaguely where she now stood with him, but the thought made her heart twist in agony. She just needed one night alone to sort her mixed feelings. Heartache threatened to choke her in the soothing shower. She did want him, she did still love him. All she could do was hope he hadn't left for good. She pushed the thought away at a feeble attempt to enjoy this one part of this miserable day.
Settled into the car –alone- sorrow and longing settled over House like a fine layer of dust. He tried to avoid it by cracking open a beer and chugging the bottle.
The two, both with regret and thankfulness, fell into a comforting sleep.
They'd go back to each other. After all, they always did.
That was wayyy too much fun. Borderline a little concerning on how much fun that was to write. Anyway, IMPORTANT NOTE: This story is (kinda) on hold, as I really need to throw myself into Greg's House, heart and soul. If you don't know what that is, I would much appreciate it if you navigated your way to my other stories and read that one! Oh, a few Huddy ones will also be posted sometime in the future, but Greg's House has my full attention. That's all! Thanks for reading, as always, AND DON'T FORGET TO REVIEW ON YOUR WAY OUT!