A House M.D./Buffy the Vampire Slayer crossover ficlette
: A doctor is supposed to work to prevent the violence, but the fury is permeating her every waking moment and she doesn't know how to make it stop.Disclaimer
: House MD belongs to Fox. Buffy the Vampire Slayer belong to Joss Whedon. No profit has been made from this fic.Spoilers
: Set early in season two of House, post-series for Buffy the Vampire Slayer. Note:
Nothing says happy birthday to me like making a new Slayer.~~~~~~
She dreams about death.
Not death she sees every day, death around her that she's unable to prevent. Death at her own hands, choking the life out of people she doesn't know, them crumbling to dust under her hands... and she doesn't feel anything but alive at their deaths.
It's been happening for months, years, and she doesn't know how to make it stop.~~~~
The first warning she has that something is going down in her clinic is the two security guards wandering past her office door. Stacey keeps talking, about something to do with something legal and important, no doubt, but all Lisa can think about is the fact that two security guards
just casually walked into her clinic with their hands very near their guns.
Her high heels make a soft sound against the carpet as she walks towards her door. The light is harsh, reflecting off the glass, causing the images on the other side to splinter in her mind, break into a thousand tiny pieces and re-form just a little off, just a little sideways, and just a little familiar.
She has been dreaming about this moment for days.
Her hand on the door, pushing gently so as to not break the glass, Stacey's voice falling to silence behind her. She knows that what she's doing has happened a thousand times before, every night when she wakes, sweating and out of breath and sheet ripped with strength not her own. This is how it is supposed to be, and she doesn't know how it will end, and it's maddening.
The security guards move to stand between the nurse's station and the pharmacist counter, on the other side of the room, and that's not the way it's supposed to be.He
is walking out of the examination room, and she's not sure it's really him. In her dreams, she never sees his face. Memory pushes over reality, and even now she can't make out his face as he walks, shaking and angry and hiding a knife somewhere on his body. She's never seen where he pulls it from.
House stands in the doorway of the examination room, hand gripping his cane so hard that his knuckles are white. He's not looking at her, not looking at anyone but the man who just left him. He's alive, and that's not the way it was in her dreams, either.
Everything splinters, falling apart and coming back together, and suddenly it is just like her dream again.
Dr. Allison Cameron, walking across the room, staring at a file, not seeing the guards, not seeing the man, not seeing anything. But Lisa know what will happen, sees the future, sees the line of red sliced across Cameron's throat, so deep her spinal column gleams dull white against the air as her blood coats the floor of the clinic.No.
This is exactly the way it's supposed to end, but she's not going to let that happen.
She's never believed in fate.
"Dr. Cameron?" she says in her most authoritative voice, freezing Cameron in her tracks. "Can I talk to you for a moment?"
Cameron is moving in a moment, away from the man with the knife and the danger. But it's not enough.
Lisa knows the instant he sees the guards, the moment he realizes her intent, and his face contorts with anger. He lunges for the nearest person, and it's still Cameron.
This is not the way it's going to end. She can't let it happen.
He's reaching for Cameron, but she's faster. Cameron's white lab coat is slippery under her fingertips as she drags the younger woman towards her, past her, to safety. The guards are yelling, but she's off balance and the only thing between her and the man is the sharp point of his knife.
"Don't!" one of the guard yells, but it's too late. He's used her own momentum to spin her around, capture her arm behind her body and presses the tip of his knife against her throat. He's not trying for careful, and the blade slices shallow into her skin.
The sting of the wound surprises her with the pain, shocks her into immobility.
"Give me morphine," the man yells, loud in her ear, as he drags her backwards. The knife leaves her throat for a moment, but then it's back, slicing another line into her flesh. "Do it!"
"Let her go!" the guard yells again, but there's motion in the corner of her vision, and that's not the way it is supposed to be at all.
"Give him the fucking morphine!" House shouts, coming into view. "Look, you're in charge, got it?" He holds out a placating hand, and Lisa still can't figure out what to do. "We'll give you whatever you want, but you're going to have to let her go."
"Are you fucking joking?" the man demands. His knife digs up into her throat, drawing a gasp of pain from her lips. The anger from her dream, from every dream she's had in the last few years, stirs in her chest. The anger of not being alive enough
. "I let her go and they shoot me!"
"They won't shoot you," House says, and in any other man, Lisa would think he was pleading. But not House. "They won't shoot you because I'm not going to let them."
But House can't see what she can see, what the man holding her in a perversion of an embrace can see, and that is the silent security guard raising his gun.
The man bellows in rage, and his knife leaves her throat, whips around and heads back toward her face.
They say that in time of danger, a person's perception slows down, allows them to see time as if it's passing slowly. It's bullshit, Lisa decides as the knife speeds towards her eye. The only thing that changes is the amount of time to make decisions.
She's being held by a crazy person who's already drawn her blood and there's a knife flying towards her brain, and she just stops thinking.
There is a pressure point in the human elbow that, when put under enough pressure, can shred the joint. A similar point exists in the human wrist. Lisa's a doctor, knows exactly where to reach to rip the cartilage in her assailant's arm to pieces, quickly, efficiently.
But Lisa doesn't think like a doctor. Her free hand whips up, grabs his forearm in the middle, where the bone is thickest, and snaps the bones in half with the pressure of her fingers and thumb alone.
So much happens at once, his screams and the burning pain across her temple and the anger in her chest that demands she finishes this, destroy her enemy, a fury she's never felt before and it feels like coming home.
He crashes into the floor, arm flopping uselessly at his side, screaming in words she can't understand. All she understands is the pain, the fury beating wings against the inside of her chest.
She takes a step towards him.
The security guards rush past her, push him to the floor, rendering him harmless. He's screaming and yelling and he's still alive and she needs to make him stop
Cuddy. Her name. She pauses in the middle of the floor. Lisa Cuddy, a doctor. A doctor is supposed to do no harm, to help those in need. Not kill.
She doesn't know who she is anymore.
She knows that voice. She doesn't like him, but he's not a threat. He's sardonic and a bastard and she can't remember his name.
"Come on, it's over."
His hand lands on her arm and she pushes him off, a little too violently. He stumbles back, but doesn't fall.
She turns away from the man on the floor. She wants to kill him. She wants to rip him apart, and it's not her
. That much she knows.
Cameron is lying on the floor, looking stunned. Stacey hovers in the door to the office, horror painted on her face, and Lisa can't figure out why.
Not until she stumbled the few steps across the floor to the wall, rests her hands on the wooden railing by the window. Afternoon sunlight trickles through the windows, shattering into a million points of light, unforgiving against her reflection.
Blood, her blood, coats her throat from slices deep in her flesh, is still pouring down from the slice across her temple, only a fraction of an inch from her eye.
She looks feral, dangerous, half an inch away from death and yet still victorious.
The man whose arm she broke with only a flick of her wrist, he still screams in the background, and suddenly Lisa Cuddy, M.D., Dean of Medicine at Princeton-Plainsboro Hospital, drops to her knees and vomits on the floor.
Nothing makes any sense any more.~~~
The police and the courts called it self-defense. Stacey pretends it's trauma, Cameron refuses to meet her eyes, and House looks at her like she's his latest mystery case. Three times now, she's caught him watching her, silent, when he should be yelling or shouting.
She doesn't yell at him anymore. Shouting brings her too close to anger, and these days, since the clinic, her anger is a dangerous thing.
The cuts on her throat and face healed too quickly. House pops up beside her occasionally to peer curiously at her healing scars, then vanishes again. She wonders, if she were to brave going into his office, what patient she would find written up on his whiteboard.
The dreams still haven't gone away, and she thinks she's getting stronger.
Late on a Monday afternoon, she storms into her office, intent on paperwork. The only hint she has that something is wrong is the faint scent of cigarette smoke and leather in the still air.
There's a woman lounging against the wall, flipping idly through one of the medical textbooks. "You actually memorize all this shit?" the woman says, slapping the book closed.
"Who are you?" Lisa demands. "And how did you get in here?"
She's halfway to her desk and the phone when the young woman says, "Chill, Dr. C." The book hits the couch as the same time as the strange woman. "I just want to talk."
The woman pulls a crumpled piece of paper from her pants pocket and throws it with unnerving accuracy across the room. What is even more unnerving is that Lisa catches it mid-air without a second thought.
"There's not many doctors that could break the arm of a heroin addict on a freak-out. Especially ones that had been cut up something fierce like that."
Lisa unfolds the paper to find a copy of the police report from the incident in the clinic.
"They started a few years ago, didn't they?" the woman says, softer now.
The woman's words echo in her head, an impossibility. She hasn't told anyone about her dreams, no one. No one can ever know.
"Sometimes, you're someone else, fighting," the woman says, standing up to saunter across the office. "Other times, you're dying, or someone's dying. Or maybe everyone dies." She shrugs. "Doesn't matter. Only one thing that matters."
Lisa sucks in a breath, slaps the paper on her desk. Everything about this woman made her want to run away and she can't figure out why. "Okay, fine, I'll bite. Before I call security, what matters?"
The young woman smiles, and it's terrifyingly familiar, a smile that Lisa's seen in the mirror a million times. "What matters is that you're like me, with the dreams, the strength..." she nods at the paper. "The violence."
Lisa leans forward over her desk. "I don't know anything about you."
The woman walks forward three steps, holds out her hand. "I'm Faith."
As explanations go, it's nothing. Lisa can't understand why she's doing this, but she finds herself reaching across the desk to take Faith's hand in hers. The handshake is harder than anything she's ever felt, and for the first time in three years, she doesn't have to hold back her strength around another person. It's intoxicating.
"So," Faith says, letting go of Lisa's hand. "You got time? 'Cause I've got one motherfucking bitch of a story for you."