Title: So Beautiful
Series: Straw Into Gold
Part: 5 of 9
Word Count: 1,300
Summary: House can’t believe how lucky he is. But will it last?.
Wherever you may go, my love, wherever you may be,
All that matters in this world, is lying next to me.
So sleep tight sweetheart, you’re free.
So beautiful you make me smile,
So wonderful you’re in my life,
Incredible that you are mine.
His hand strokes her hair as she sleeps. A part of him is relieved that he finally told her how he feels but another part of him is afraid that he’s made himself too vulnerable. He knows intellectually that Allison is not like Stacy but his heart doesn’t know if it could stand to be broken again.
Allison is beautiful and intelligent and he knows that he’s damn lucky that she was persistent enough to crack his bitter shell and worm her way into his affections. The last two months have been the happiest of his life since his life altering injury. He remembers the days in the hospital, right after the infarction was diagnosed, when he felt hopeless and wished that he hadn’t survived.
The woman in his arms gave him back his hope. He owes her a debt he’s not sure he can ever repay.
He finally drifts off to sleep, a content smile gracing his lips.
He’s in his office, contentedly playing his Gameboy and thinking about Allison. It’s been almost three weeks since they said I love you and he’s finally feeling more comfortable with the relationship. He still hasn’t said it first, but he always replies with “I love you, too” when she says it. He knows that she knows that it’s still hard for him though and he appreciates her understanding.
He barely looks up when Wilson walks in.
“People are talking, House,” he says without preamble.
Greg raises an eyebrow. “People generally do, Wilson. Am I supposed to be impressed?”
His best friend lets out an exasperated sigh. “They’re talking about your remarkable change in attitude over the last couple of weeks,” he says. When that gets no reaction, he adds, “And they’re talking about you and Cameron.”
Greg’s brows furrow. “What are they saying?” he asks, making air quotes on the word they.
“Several nurses have reported hearing you whistle in the hallways. Foreman said he caught you in a patient’s room without being cajoled into going there. Cuddy said you’ve been putting in your clinic hours without complaining.”
He shrugs. “What does any of that have to do with Al… Cameron?”
His best friend raises his eyebrows, letting Greg know that he caught that slip. “Well, that’s one thing. Chase and Foreman both claim to have heard you call Dr. Cameron by her given name. There’s also the fact that any time your name and attitude adjustment are brought up in her presence, she clams up and acts like she has no idea what anyone is talking about which leads many people to speculate that she had something to do with it.”
“And what do you say, Wilson?”
“I don’t say much of anything,” he replies. “I know there is something going on with you and Cameron and even though I’m slightly offended that you haven’t shared with me, I wouldn’t betray either of you. I just wanted to warn you that people are talking.”
He considers his best friend’s words and realizes that it’s hypocritical to consider Jimmy his best friend if he’s not going to be honest with him. “We’ve been together for almost three months,” he admits.
Wilson raises his eyebrows. “Wow,” is all he manages to say.
“I love her,” he continues, getting a twisted enjoyment out of his friend’s reactions.
“Does she know that?”
“Yes. She said it first though.”
“I’m amazed that you said it at all, Greg,” Wilson says. “But it’s obviously good for you.”
Greg’s eyebrows furrow at that. “It has been wonderful for me personally. But I’m worried that maybe it’s not so good professionally. I have a reputation to protect after all.”
“A reputation as a bitter misanthrope? Wilson asks, with a raised eyebrow.
House just shrugs, lost in his thoughts as his best friend’s pager goes off and he hurries out of the office.
That night he plays the piano while she prepares dinner. He knows he needs to mention Wilson’s visit, but he doesn’t want to talk about the ramifications of the information he received.
He forgot that he can’t hide his feelings from her anymore. She questions him as soon as they sit down at the table.
“What’s going on?”
He takes a moment to think about how he wants to approach this. “Wilson came to see me today,” he finally begins.
“And he wanted to tell me that people are talking.”
“About us,” she says, and he realizes that she’s known about the hospital gossip and hasn’t brought it up.
“Yeah,” he says, a little bit of anger in his voice that she hasn’t clued him in sooner. “Apparently I’ve had a miraculous attitude change and everyone assumes it has something to do with you.”
She shrugs. “I’ve heard some rumblings. But no one knows anything so I figured it wasn’t a big deal.”
“We agreed to keep it out of the hospital though. You should have told me that people suspected!” He isn’t quite sure why he’s so angry with her, they’ve talked about the fact that they might have to deal with this some day.
“People suspected before there was anything going on!” she raises her voice to match his. “Shit, Greg, there are people who think you and Wilson have something going on!”
He rolls his eyes. “But he and I don’t. You and I do. And if people find out, both of our jobs could be in jeopardy!”
“How so? People in hospitals date and even get married all the time. If you weren’t such a miserable bastard most of the time, no one would even take notice of us.”
“What are we going to do?” he asks, lowering his voice to a conversational tone. He realizes that he shouldn’t be yelling at her.
“What can we do?”
“I guess we need to be more careful.”
She laughs harshly, a reaction that startles and confuses him.
“Well what do you think we should do Allison?”
“I think we should act like adults and stop hiding. Wilson knows. Chase and Foreman have to have a pretty damn good idea. The entire hospital suspects. If we admit it and act like its not a big deal, everyone will forget and they’ll find some new fodder for the gossip mill within a week.”
Deep down he knows she’s right, he’s seen it happen enough times before. But he hesitates because he’s still scared of his feelings. Some irrational part of him thinks that if no one knows he’s in love with Allison, it won’t hurt so bad if she breaks his heart.
His hesitation is a mistake though as he soon realizes.
She gets up from the table and walks around the living room, putting her shoes on and getting her purse.
“Allison, what are you doing?”
“I’m leaving, Greg. I can’t do this anymore. I was willing to take things slow, go at your pace. But this is too much. If you can’t be man enough to be honest about our relationship than I guess our relationship doesn’t mean that much to you after all.”
“Allison, wait,” he pleads, but his words fall on deaf ears. She is already out the door. She turns around to face him before she walks away.
“I’ll stop by this weekend to pack my things and I’d prefer it if you weren’t here,” is all she says before pulling the door shut.
He slams his fists on the table in front of him. He’s angry with her for leaving, for not listening to him or understanding where he was coming from. But he’s more angry with himself because he knows she was right about everything and he knows its his own fault that the best thing he’s ever had in his life just walked out that door.