I don’t own House or BTVS. No infringement is intended. Sadly, no profit will be made from this either.
For once, House enjoyed waking up.
In fact, he was smiling even before he opened his eyes for the first time. As he reached over for his first dose of Vicodin, his hand came in contact with the very object responsible for the afore-mentioned smile.
Cuddy's lace panties.
The smile never leaving his face, House headed for his bathroom to get ready for a day full of fun.
Because he was pretty sure her memory would be rudimentary at best.
But as he was rather adept at multitasking, especially when it came to manipulating or playing with several people at once, he even went so far as searching through the deepest recesses of his underwear drawer, finally coming up with an atrocity he'd never even considered wearing. Holding the offending boxers between the tips of his fingers away from him, he took another look.
They'd been buried for at least five years after all. If anything, they'd gotten even uglier with time. But they were clean, the material was comfy and - after a quick reassuring look in the mirror - indeed ass-hugging. Which could never hurt. But, most importantly, he had a session with a physiotherapist that still wasn't talking to him later today. Oh, he knew she'd calmed down and was simply leaving him out to dry deliberately. It was an action he highly approved of. Or he would, if he wasn’t the one doing the drying.
Luckily he was absolutely certain that his secret weapon would have Buffy talking to him by the end of the day.
Cuddy stormed into the hospital, unaware of all the people literally jumping out of her way. In fact, if you squinted your eyes far enough, tilted your head at the right angle at the right time and used the sunlight and the light-breaking properties of the glass walls just right, you'd be able to see the smoke coming from her ears.
Today simply wasn't going to be her day. Not only had she been missing certain parts of her underwear this morning, but she had also found her bed distinctly rumpled. Although she had made it the previous morning and she most certainly hadn't woken up in it.
Which, as in woken up, she'd obviously done on her couch. Her clothes might have been in disarray, but that was to be expected after a rough night on the couch. Right? Besides, it made perfect sense for her to be covered by a blanked from a cupboard in her hallway. After all, it was only logical that she'd go and fetch a blanket if she was cold. Even if the cupboard was marginally closer to her bed than to her couch.
The problem was she couldn't really remember all of last night. Well, she knew she had been drinking at a nice, cultivated bar with nice and civilised men. At some point she had thought calling House was a great idea. Because, really, civilised went only that far when you're burdened with a friend like House. Naturally he'd magically turned up at her side only a little while later. They had drunk together for quite some time and generally enjoyed themselves.
That's when the gaps started to appear in her memory.
She didn't remember how she got home. Yet she was pretty sure House had come into the house with her.
There was also the image of them slowly dancing in her living room. And the hallway. Though she wasn't sure if it was a real memory or more of a dream.
Then again, missing panties sounded very much like him. At least, with him being present, she knew he was the only one who could have anything to do with it. Otherwise she'd never had drunk as much as she had, knowing he was way too possessive to let her wander off with anyone else in her drunken state. Which, in a strange way, was kind of reassuring as well.
Now, if she could only remember if something had actually happened between them! It wasn't like it would be the first time, but remembering their few encounters during her time at medical school she'd actually be sorry to not remember the details. Well, if there were any details in the first place, of course.
Cuddy sighed deeply. Not knowing really was frustrating.
It wasn't like she could ask House. Well, she could. It was the answer she couldn't trust. In other words, his answer would most likely be yes. In fact, it would be detailed enough to probably make her blush.
Her body wasn't really talking to her either. Or maybe …Nope, scratch that, her hangover was definitely
masking any kind of signal she'd normally get from her body after, well, after a good work-out.
And as if that wasn't enough, she was already five minutes late for a two-hour long torture session with the Finance Department. On only one cup of instant coffee. As, naturally, nobody had bothered to switch on her alarm clock last night. Or her automatic coffee machine.
A little while later and in another part of the hospital, Buffy was in a similar mood as Cuddy. Or, for a lack of a better word, she was plainly and simply grumpy.
She was tired, the demon and vampire population didn't seem to cooperate anymore, and she appeared to pick up more injuries lately. Or, rather, she seemed to be more sensitive to them. Which, inevitably, sucked.
Furthermore, with Allison being way too good in spotting even the tiniest bruise, Buffy had to get up earlier to cover up any visible signs of them. Or be confronted with Allison's, albeit careful, probing into her injuries' origin. She'd already tried to sensitise Buffy towards domestic violence and Buffy was pretty sure Allison thought something like that to be the reason for her injuries. As if getting up early wasn't enough, Buffy, given her work, also managed to jostle her injuries several times a day. Which wasn't very pleasant. Naturally it caused major pout-age on her side.
Unfortunately, her co-workers teased her about her grouchiness of late - and even started to compare her to House. Or rather implied that working with
, well, on
him was rubbing off on her. Just today, Kamil had pointed out that it must be a two-way thing as he'd just passed a very happy House.
It just wasn't fair, Buffy thought.
She'd have no choice but to end House's good mood when they had another physiotherapy session later today. Maybe throw him some disapproving glances or something. Then again, disapproving glances alone would probably do nothing but amuse him. Maybe she should stare him down. Grunt a bit. Stand in front of the telly. This train of thoughts actually brought the first smile of the day onto her face.
Maybe it wasn't going to be such a bad day after all.
Unfortunately for Buffy, somewhere ... anywhere really, as the correct location was hard to pin-point in that place in-between planes, dimensions and realities... a minor god in training who happened to be bored was, more or less accidentally, tuning into Buffy's thoughts at that exact time.
And grinning mischievously.
This was way better than studying.
Unaware of Buffy's dark thoughts, which, incidentally, he'd probably very much approve of, House barely prevented himself from whistling on his way to Cuddy's office. His in-built Cuddy radar told him she'd just be back from the Finance Department and be in a very dark mood. Which was great.
Upon the protests of Cuddy's secretary, House threw her a quick look and shook his head sadly. "Boob-job, cleavage revealing clothes and I just might listen to you." Stopping at Cuddy's door, House waved his hand. "Well, not listening as I'd be too busy looking, but I'd stop and pretend."
Brushing off the protests coming from behind his back, House opened the door and casually stro … limped into Cuddy's office. "Headache?" House asked sweetly, grinning at the form slumped behind the desk.
"Go away." Cuddy didn't even raise her head. Being all administrator-y for the last couple of hours had drained whatever energy she'd had left. "You're behind in your clinic hours."
Chuckling soundlessly, House leaned close and whispered in her ear, "Good guess. Especially as I'm always behind."
Literally jumping up, Cuddy turned and looked at him in shock. How had he come that close without her noticing?
Still grinning, House walked to her couch and made himself comfortable. Then he put on his favourite 'I'm in shock' expression. "Oh my, you wouldn't happen to have gone and got yourself drunk last night? In the middle of the week at that!"
Knowing from experience it would only hurt, Cuddy stopped herself from rolling her eyes at him. Instead she simply started her computer. "Very funny."
Leaning his head to one side, House watched her closely. And started to smile when Cuddy's skin colour changed to a suspicious shade of red. He loved it when she reacted to him just watching her. Judging by the tense expression on her face, he also knew what she was thinking. Leaning back, he crossed his arms in front of him and just enjoyed the show.
Cuddy was fuming. How dare he walk in like that, looking like he hadn't been drinking all night and was actually enjoying himself? The bastard probably didn't even have a blackout. At least bits and pieces of last night were starting to float around her brain now. Then again, they stubbornly refused to answer the most important question. Had they … or had they not?
Always proud of his timing, House choose that moment to interrupt her thoughts. "Reliving last night?"
"Shut up," Cuddy pouted. "It's all your fault, anyway."
His eyebrows shot up his forehead. Shaking is head slightly, House started to twirl his cane. "I didn't get you a single drink."
Smiling at that, she remembered this much at last, Cuddy found herself agreeing. "No, you didn't. But you didn't decline the offered drinks either."
"Hey, who am I to stop the important-my-ass lawyers from spending their earned-by-deception money?"
Snorting, Cuddy opened her word processor. "At least they were paying."
"They were trying to get into your panties," House countered nonchalantly.
Shrugging, Cuddy nodded. "I know. But they'd never have been successful anyway."
"Yeah?" House asked, leaning forward in anticipation. "Then where are your panties from last night?"
Eyes opening dangerously wide, Cuddy was momentarily speechless. At least she knew where they were now. Finally having regained her composure, Cuddy shrugged her shoulders and looked at him innocently. "I don't know what you're talking about."
"Cuddy, Cuddy, Cuddy." House shook his finger at her with a big grin firmly plastered on his face. "If the hospital board knew that you're openly lying to a hospital employee…"
Rolling her eyes, headache or not, Cuddy pointed to her door and told him half-heartedly to leave. "Clinic. Now."
"You weren't that hostile last night," House replied in mock hurt, wiping an imaginary tear from his cheek.
"OUT!" Cuddy replied forcefully, yet couldn't stop herself from smiling.
Grinning right back, House tucked his hand into his jeans pocket as if he was looking for something and, after shuffling around for a bit, he waggled his eyebrows suggestively. Worse, upon withdrawing his hand Cuddy could see a very familiar looking, midnight blue coloured, piece of lace fabric poking out of the pocket.
Blushing once more, Cuddy just threw her hands up in frustration. One day, once her hair decided to become grey, she was going to name the first grey coloured ones House.
Just before plucking them out.
As Cuddy had ordered him to, House went straight to the open clinic once he'd left her office.
He even attended to three patients before getting comfortable in one of the examination rooms, watching his portable telly He'd go and look for another couple of patients in an hour or so.
At the end of his chosen show he even had to turn up the volume as there seemed to be quite a few police sirens outside the hospital. If he'd been with a patient, then he'd have gone to investigate of course. Now he'd just tap into the hospital grapevine to find out what had been going on. With his show finally finished, House sighed and put the telly out of sight.
But regretted it only a few minutes later while listening to a cockroach dressed up as a human. Must have been watching Men in Black too often and gotten strange ideas from that. Luckily he'd stolen a lollipop from the nurse's desk so he could concentrate on the, admittedly artificial, flavour in order to avoid death by stupidity. That, and the cockroach had at least chosen a well-built female skin. So he enjoyed the view, his lollipop, and calculated the time he could write off from his clinic duty for enduring this patient.
Another patient later and House was ready for another break. Besides General Hospital was about to start and he wasn't going to sacrifice it for some idiots lacking common sense. And those actually being taken ill by none of their fault would be seen to by the other doctors anyway.
Snatching another lollipop from the nurse's desk while skilfully avoiding nurse Brenda's gaze, House was stopped from sneaking away by a commotion near the clinic entrance.
"I'm fine! Really!" An all too well known voice protested.
Smiling, House leaned on the desk, waiting for his favourite physiotherapist to appear. When she did, Buffy was flanked by a security guard and a flustered looking police officer.
"Ma'am, we're really grateful for your help. But you're injured and need to be checked out," the police woman tried to argue with Buffy.
"Fine," Buffy said, rolling her eyes. "Be grateful all you want. But I've got a patient waiting. See you later." Turning away from the woman, Buffy went to leave and run straight into the security officer. "Ouch." By now Buffy was in full pout mode. So much for her day finally getting better.
House, naturally wanting to know what all the ruckus was about, cocked an eyebrow. "Did she steal the last toilet roll or something?"
"Oh, look! My patient!" Buffy quipped – only to be rudely ignored. House, watching her from the side, expected her to stomp her foot any minute now. This was way better than General Hospital!
"Nope." The security guy shook his head in answer to House's previous question, sounding rather impressed. "She stopped a group of thugs from robbing an elderly lady who'd unfortunately tried to take a short-cut through one of the darker corners of the underground car park."
Furrowing his brows, House took a closer look at Buffy. Yes, she looked a little bit dishevelled but that was about it. "She did?"
"Yes," the police officer explained. "Turns out they've been terrorising the area for quite some time. Though any witnesses were too scared to tell us anything useful so far. Yet Miss Summers managed to keep them at bay until hospital security arrived. Thanks to the CCTV footage we've hopefully got enough evidence to bring them to court."
"She's standing right in front of you, you know," Buffy said annoyed, pout still firmly in place. The stupid CCTV system was the reason she'd been careful to not show uber-human skill and was now sporting a few more bruises than this morning. "And she's fine. No need to go all doctor-y on her."
Tilting his head to one side, House pointed to her side. "Interesting top you're wearing. The bloody look clearly adds to its charm," he commented dryly.
"Huh?" Buffy looked at him in confusion. Upon following his pointing finger, she looked down her left side and, after seeing the fresh blood stains, groaned. "I just bought it last week! Do you know how long it took me to find the perfect colour?" Buffy complained, crossing her arms in front of her chest.
This just wasn't fair!
--A/N: Sorry for the little delay. But it's a slightly longer chapter. And the next one is written but still needs editing and betaing. Still, it's going to be a two chapter week! Well, if you don't mind, that is. Anyway, thanks to everyone who reviewed.