First fanfic ever, I hope you enjoy. Takes place during season 4. I really hope this isn't terribly corny... or just terrible, lol.
Summary: Gregory House solves medical mysteries. Not science fiction myths. Until now.
Step, limp. Step, limp. Step, limp. Repeat.
Walking the mile. Walking the mile. Limping the mile.
As Gregory House "walked the mile" (his term for walking (or limping) the short distance from his office to the clinic), he couldn't help but feel something was... odd.
He never believed in superstition - reality was his profession. But this day really felt... odd. Not the kind of odd he liked either - like "accidentally" turning Wilson's office into a public movie theatre, or figuring out Cuddy's password (was) partypants. This was a bad kind of odd... like a nightmare.
House first became suspicious when riding his motorcycle to work. It was remarkably easy, no traffic, no slow pedestrians, no people on the street trying to sell him magazine subscriptions... He liked it.
But at this moment, Gregory House didn't like the awe of his seemingly good day so far. Heck, the bum leg didn't even hurt as much. It only felt like he had been stabbed, instead of robbed of muscle mass after being cut open during a chemically-induced coma.
No Cuddy patrolling about the perimeter, waiting to release the dogs at House's escape. Mush!
"Maybe I can just sleep the day away in the clinic." House chuckled to himself.
There was but one chart resting at the nurse's station, which House reluctantly grabbed making him way towards Exam Room 1.
Name: Wade Kadling.
No history or physical or mental disease.
Complaining of: Fever, tachypnea, tachycardia, headache, chills, dizziness, weakness, light-headedness.
Basic flu-like symptoms. House laughed to himself. Antihistamines and bedrest. Could today get any easier?
House opened the door, and was surprised to see the patient already seated after turning on the lights.
Wade flinched, and House didn't blame him. Must have fell asleep in here... much like House's near future plans.
He then got a closer look.
Woah, he looked pissed. Like, more pissed than me when Cuddy nags at me to do clinic duty. Woah.
Debating on whether it a good idea to insult him or not, House put on gloves and began to examine the patient.
Wade didn't say a word, instead growling at House when he got near him.
"Arrogance has to be earned. Growling at me is just pathetic. You just have the flu. Here's a prescription for antihistamines, go home and growl at your dog instead. Or your neighbor. I really don't care." House said.
When handing the prescription to Wade, House noticed something. Something... well, odd.
The patient was as a pale as a ghost, obviously agitated, possible disorientation.
House then remembered... didn't the dude flinch when I turned on the lights? Add sensitivity to light to the list of symptoms, mighty brain.
Silently judging the idiot for not getting help sooner, House limped towards the door when he saw something out of the corner of his eye.
Jaundice in his eyes. You idiot.
House scanned the rest of Wade quickly for any other symptoms - thankfully the kid had passed out. He was creepy. but there weren't any (visible to the naked eye). Making a list of diagnoses in his head, House began the game that to him was the never-ending Rubik's Cube.
Jaundice could be caused by drugs, alcoholism, malaria, sickle cell anemia, and Gilbert's syndrome were the most probable diagnoses.
Gilbert's syndrome - it didn't cause all of these symtoms, though present in about 5% of the population. Next.
Sickle cell anemia. This could explain his symptoms, but it was much rarer. Plus, this dude would be vomiting blood, probably on me. And it's hereditary, no mention of it in family history, and very unlikely that both of his parents carried the recessive gene, with a 50/50 chance of him getting it. Next.
Malaria. There's been no outbreak in Princeton - and it was the middle of winter. This guy wasn't bitten by a mosquito. No mention of recent trips in the history, and this guy was too pale to have gone to Africa recently - where the outbreak of malaria has been devestating. Next.
Drug addict. Whoops, that was me. I didn't say I had a problem though. Next.
Alcoholism. The guy wasn't yellow everywhere - just his eyes. He's only 22. With the hint of a 5 o'clock shadow and slight bags under his eyes, the kid didn't look like a junkie. A hangover could explain the headache, sensitivity to light, feeling like crap... But nothing else. Plus, alcoholism leads to liver disease in most cases. That takes years to develop. Great, I've ruled out everything.
Wait, liver disease. That causes jaundice. But other things can cause liver disease.
House had an "AHA!" moment, almost jumping up in excitement.
Acute Encephalitis. That could explain it. Caused by viral or bacterial infection, ingestion of toxins, complication of malignancy (okay, malignancy wasn't it. The kid would be at the oncology ward with Nurse Wilson).
I could have the ducklings search the kid's apartment. See if there's any toxins. Or leftover Chinese takeout. I'm hungry.
We could give him antibiotics to make sure it's not viral, or deduce that it is bacterial. Whichever gets me out of here quicker, this dude is starting to creep me out. Is he getting closer?
House was starting to get creeped out by the kid. He started growling again, spitting out as he did so.
Hypersalivation. What?! Looks like I just got a lot more work... most likely caused by... Crap. Rabies.
Rabies causes acute encephalitis. Shit. The CDC would be all over this place.
Likewise, House noticed what must be a healing bite mark on the kids hand, covered with a bandage.
House left the room immeadiately - rabies was fatal in most cases, and there were only like 2 cases per year.
Of course this had to happen. Today. At this hospital. Me being the attending. Just great.
Limping to the nurses station, he spotted Cuddy nearby.
Don't get distracted. You have a mission. Stop having fantasies. Ugh.
Oooh, look - its Dr... what's his name? African American Mormon... um... Big Love! Yes, Big Love!
What House didn't notice was that the patient, Wade Kadling, was following him. Sort of mocking him, the way he limped. Very angrily and disoriented - as if he were drunk.
Wade lunged for House - missing by a few inches.
"Look kid, if you're considering grabbing my ass, don't start anything you can't finish. Big Love over here would love to take you out for dinner, I'm sure."
Dr. Cole glared at House, but contained himself - not wanting to punch the jerk twice in one week.
Just as he was walking off, Wade lunged again, this time for Cole.
Crap. What the heck is going on today?
Wade attacked Cole, biting him, like an act of cannibalism.
House quickly hit Wade on the head with his cane, hard enough to knock him out.
Something weird happened though, it was as if the kid's head was made of jello. When the cane hit it, the head had a clear incision - enough to cause serious brain damage, or fatality.
Wade went limp, crashing to the floor beside Cole, who only had a few scratches and one bite mark from the attack.
Oh god. What have I done? I didn't hit him hard enough to kill...
Cuddy stared at House - but not with anger, instead in pure shock. Then she focused her attention to Cole. His eyes. Something was different.
His eyes. They look... almost yellow. Wait a minute... Rabies isn't spread that quickly...Or from human to human contact.
"I'm okay. Just get this punk away... serves him right." spouted Cole. He seemed fine.
House knew something that the others didn't. Thank goodness for his late nights spent watching AMC and childhood reading science fiction.
PPTH was dealing with something much bigger. Infectious. Viral. Widespread. Pandemic, if not controlled.
House grabbed the now deceased kid's chart once more - re-reading the symptoms once more.
Wade Kadling. Flu-like symptoms. Acute Encephalitis, caused by rabies. CDC is going to be annoying.
There was something funny about the name, puzzling almost... Wade Kadling... ancronym: Walking Dead.
Yeah, shit happens.
Let me know what you think. Or if it's bad, haha. Thanks for reading!