House ignored the knocking at his front door and kept staring at his muted TV. There was some kind of documentary running, but House didn't pay any attention. The flickering pictures merely provided him with the right setting for his thought processes.
Cuddy was pregnant. He had no idea how Faith had confirmed his assumptions, but he was sure she really knew. As in having run a pregnancy test. Only when he had asked her later how she'd done it, she'd just waggled her eyebrows and had smirked at him.
There was another knock and House closed his eyes in irritation as his train of thoughts was interrupted by it. That still didn't mean he was going to get up and open the door. Faith wouldn't even have bothered with the second knock; she would just have picked his lock and entered – another fact that made him like her. Wilson would eventually get his own key and open the door and Cuddy, Cuddy would start to call for him. Or, rather, yell. Hence, there was no need for him to even move off the couch.
Sure enough, only moments later he heard a key being inserted into the lock just before the door opened.
"House? Why didn't you answer your door?" Wilson asked, but immediately answered his own question. "Right. Stupid question."
Snorting, House pointed towards the kitchen. "Bring me a beer, will you?"
Sighing theatrically, Wilson put his coat away before grabbing two beers from the kitchen. Putting one of the bottles within House's reach, he fell onto an empty armchair and took a long swig from his own beer.
House picked up his bottle – and frowned at the still closed lid. "Waiter? Closed bottle equals to no tip for you!"
"Yes, House. I shall find a dark corner and think about my inappropriate behaviour."
Opening the bottle, House smirked. "You sound annoyed. Cutthroat Bitch put you on the short leash already?"
"Ah," House nodded in understanding. "You're ready to ditch the bitch."
Forcefully putting his bottle on the table, spilling some of its contents in the process, Wilson glared at House. "No! House! Stop doing that, will you?"
House didn't even raise an eyebrow at Wilson's outburst. "And where would be the fun in that?"
Groaning, Wilson leaned back into his chair again. "Just so you know, I'm going to meet Amber later tonight."
"Ah, stop!" House all but squealed as he squeezed his eyes tightly shut and covered his ears with his hands. "Spare my poor, innocent ears the details of your scandalous sex life." Opening first one, then the other eye, he nodded towards the piano. "There are some empty papers on top, draw them instead. Don't tell anyone, but my ears are blind. But this also means they won't see your sketches – and hence keep their innocence."
"Ha ha. Very funny." Wilson rolled his eyes. "I can't stop laughing."
"So, why are you here then? Kill the time till you meet Cutthroat Bitch?" House asked.
"Skip the sarcasm. I just thought it be nice to spend some time together, doing nothing. There's always been someone else present lately."
House opened his eyes in mock-shock, "Wilson! I've … I've never thought you felt
this way about me!"
Snorting, Wilson shook his head. "Yeah, yeah. So, what exactly is going on between you and Faith?"
House waggled his eyebrows suggestively, but didn't say anything.
"Are you two sleeping together?"
House smirked. "That's not why you're here."
"You've got that 'I have a question but don't know how to ask'
-face," House explained with a shrug. Tapping his chin with his forefinger, he tilted his head slightly as he watched his friend closely. "Buffy. It's been almost two months and she still hasn't talked to you."
Sighing, Wilson eventually nodded. "At least she's acknowledging me whenever we meet in the hospital now."
"Cuddy's still treating you like she always has," House stated matter of fact, causing Wilson to frown in confusion. "Which means Buffy will probably talk to you at some point."
"And that's going to make sense how?"
House shrugged his shoulder while there was another knock on the front door.
"Aren't you going to see who's there?" Wilson asked. House just raised his eyebrows, reminding him just how Wilson had gotten in earlier. "Right."
There was another knock that was quickly followed by someone fumbling with the lock. Looking with wide eyes between House and the door, Wilson leaned closer to his friend and whispered, "Someone's trying to break in!"
"Oh no!" House exclaimed, his hand covering his open mouth. Smirking when the quiet click of the lock told them that it had been successfully picked, House lifted his hand, waving in the general direction of the door. "Hey Faith."
Wilson looked up in shock only to find Faith grinning at him. "You just picked his locks."
Shrugging her shoulders, Faith put her motorcycle helmet away and went straight for the kitchen. "I know. Kicking it in would be so much faster … but people usually get annoyed when I do that."
"What?" Wilson asked alarmed. "You've kicked in doors before?"
"Sure. It's great fun." Faith sat down on the couch next to House. The two immediately clanked their bottles together before taking a long drink. "House gets special treatment 'cause he lets me ride his bike."
Wilson's phone went off before he could give a reply to that comment. Which, of course, was just as well as he hadn't really come up with anything useful yet. Switching of the alarm, Wilson stood up and took his empty bottle back to the kitchen. "Sorry, but I need to go."
"Private sex lessons with Cutthroat Bitch," House told Faith. Upon Wilson's groan, House continued casually, "Though I'd bet they'd both blush and stutter at some of the stuff you showed me."
"Yup," Faith replied just as casually, giving Wilson a very lascivious grin. Seeing the blush creeping up his face, the grin turned into a smile. "Have fun. And give me a call if you need some suggestions."
Wilson stuttered something unintelligible before throwing his hands up in the air in defeat. Collecting his coat, he said his goodbye and left.
"That was fun," House said as the door closed behind his friend. "So, how about those suggestions? Care to share? Show, even?"
"Nope," Faith said easily, brushing her finger along his jaw. "Gotta save yourself for someone else."
House rolled his eyes before pointing towards the still muted TV. "Got the movies?"
Frowning, Buffy looked at her mom as she brought a plate with two marmite-pineapple jam sandwiches from the kitchen. "Are you sure you aren't pregnant or something?"
Lisa stopped short, but continued a couple of seconds later. Sighing, she shook her head. "Pretty much."
Tilting her head, Buffy took one of the sandwiches and watched her mom as she bit into it. "But you wouldn't mind?"
"No, I wouldn't mind," Lisa replied, smiling wistfully before telling Buffy of her attempts of getting pregnant over a year ago. She also told her about the one time she did become pregnant – only to lose the baby early on. And how she didn't attempt it again afterwards.
"I'm sorry," Buffy said once Lisa finished her story. "Are you gonna try again?"
Lisa shook her head.
"Why not?" Buffy asked with forehead wrinkled in confusion.
"It's just …" Lisa shrugged her shoulders. "You know?"
Seeing her mom didn't really want to talk about it, Buffy let the topic drop. For now anyway. And went on to the next best thing. "So, what about your love life? Anything interesting happening?"
Grinning, Lisa pointed at Buffy. "Well, I've recently met two people I love very much."
Interest sparkling in her eyes, Buffy leaned forward, eagerly to hear more. "Spill."
"A tall-ish brunette with odd tastes and a short blonde – who's about to give me another person to love to bits," Lisa said.
Realisation dawning quickly, Buffy rolled her eyes. Then another comment hit and she started to pout. "Short? Who's short? Besides, look at yourself! It's all your fault I'm a wee bit shorter than average woman!"
Giggling, Lisa leaned over and ruffled Buffy's hair, knowing just how much it annoyed her daughter. But she couldn't help herself – it simply felt right. "I think you're just right."
"My hair!" Buffy protested. Though, instead of the anticipated apology all Buffy got to hear was her mom's giggles turning into full laughter.
"You're such a girl!"
Crossing her arms in front of her, Buffy glared at Lisa. "Well, duh! I am
"Duh! Again!" Deciding that keeping up the pout was way too exhausting, Buffy relaxed back into the couch. When Lisa came back, putting chocolate chip cookies on the table, Buffy went in for the kill. Well, back to her original question, really. "Enough with the evading. Men. Your men to be exact. Spill!"
Lisa closed her eyes as she filled her mouth with chocolate chip cookie goodness. She'd found the recipe on the Internet and ever since trying it out several months ago; she made sure she'd never run out of them. Even thought it meant making fresh batches every other weekend ever since Buffy came into her life.
"Hel-lo-o! Earth to Lisa!"
"What? Oh. Sorry." Lisa smiled sheepishly as she finished her cookie. "What was your question again?"
Rolling her eyes, Buffy grabbed the plate with the cookies and moved it out of Lisa's range. "Spill or no more cookies for you!"
After several attempts of retrieving the cookies failed, Lisa was the one pouting. But Buffy didn't give in. Instead, she started eating the cookies one by one.
"Alright, alright!" Lisa said as she saw her stock of cookies dwindle at an alarming rate. Buffy grinned and put the plate on the table, though she still kept it out of Lisa's range. "But there hasn't been anyone lately."
"But it's the truth."
"Okay, what about House? What exactly is going on between the two of you?" Buffy asked curiously.
Eyebrows raised incredibly high, Lisa offered a weak, "Nothing?"
"Uh huh. That won't get you anymore cookies, you know." Buffy took another cookie for herself, moaning in pleasure as she chewed it slowly.
"Buf-fy!" Lisa whined. "Okay, okay, there might have been something a long time ago. When I was still in med school."
Buffy handed a cookie to Lisa. "It's a start. But what's with all the teasing and bickering?"
"It's House, what else do you expect?"
"Okay, okay." Lisa held up her hands in surrender. "There might have been … something."
"When? How? Cookie?"
Laughing, Lisa accepted the last cookie from the plate. "Three month ago? You know, it's your fault anyway."
"I'd just talked to Giles and he'd told me that he'd found you. And that you'd contact me in your own time. One day, I couldn't take the wait any longer and went out at night. Had some nice drinks but the company was boring. I think I've called House from the bar."
"Oh, goody!" Buffy rubbed her hands together in anticipation. "What happened then?"
Sighing, Lisa gave a lopsided smile. "I'm kinda drawing a blank. I just remember some bits and pieces – well, it could have gone either way."
"So you might have slept with House but can't remember it?" Buffy asked in bewilderment. Lisa nodded. "Bummer."
Snickering, Lisa agreed.
"Why didn't you ask him?"
"Because he'd have said yes in either case – and I wouldn't have heard the end of it," Lisa said with a shrug.
"True." Buffy scrunched up her nose as she stood up. "Junior demands a bathroom break, we'll talk more about House when I get back."
Buffy was gone before Lisa could protest.
Cliff Marmine was sitting in his office at home, frowning at his monitor, though it had nothing to do with whatever was displayed on it. In fact, the screensaver had appeared quite a while ago and Marmine hadn't done anything to change it.
Just a couple of hours earlier Heather had told him of her surprising conversation with one of her cousins during the latest family meeting. A meeting he hadn't been able to attend as he'd been at a conference at the other end of the country. Sure, he had asked her if anything interesting happened as soon as both them returned, but now, thinking about it, he remembered he had only gotten an evasive answer to his question. Of course, it hadn't bothered him too much then.
But, having learned of her conversation with the one cousin that had been in contact with Mark, he didn't know what to do anymore. It seemed like there were some big inconsistencies concerning Mark's life. Or rather, his attempts at staying in contact with his family. Worse, Heather had asked her cousin to contact Mark's fiancée.
The same fiancée he had been working with for the last several months. The pregnant fiancée. The fiancée he hadn't told Heather he already knew about.
He was in so much trouble!
Of course, he could come clean right now – only Heather would probably leave him as soon as she heard Buffy's side of the story.
But not coming clean would only mean he'd have more time to dig his own grave.
And he was pretty sure that hoping Heather would drop the matter was nothing but an exercise in futility.
Letting his head drop on his desk, he groaned. He saw only one way out right now – he'd have to talk to Summers. And she would hold all the aces.
"Well, that was disappointing," House said once the movie had finished. "Next one is on me."
Snorting, Faith stole the bowl of popcorn from House's lap. "You're just annoyed that they wore too much clothing."
"So what? You spent a few bucks on those movies, the least I can expect is lots of nudity!" House grumbled.
"You're just mad 'cause you aren't getting any," Faith replied easily.
"Look who's talking," House growled, trying to snatch the popcorn back. Slapping his hand away, Faith held up another DVD. "How about this one?"
Smirking, House waggled his eyebrows. "Nice thinking!"
"Yup." Putting DVD and popcorn to the side, Faith got her cell phone out and wriggled it in front of him. "Want me to get you some?" Not waiting for a reply, she pressed one of the speed-dial buttons. Smirking at House, she said, "Hey B, is Lisa around?"
Buffy just finished giving her baby a lecture about playing on mommy's bladder when her cell phone rung. Quickly drying off her hands, she answered – and grinned when she recognised Faith's voice.
"What are you up to?" she asked curiously in response to her friend's question.
"Poor House needs to get laid," Faith said. Both her and Buffy started to snicker when House immediately denied everything in the background. "So, she around?"
"Sure, just need a second to get back to her." Buffy left the bathroom and walked towards the living room. "What have you two been up to anyway?"
"This and that, the usual."
Buffy snorted. "Of- wait a second." Frowning, Buffy put the phone down but kept the connection open. Tilting her head, she listened intently. She couldn't quite put her finger on it, but something felt off. Slipping into the kitchen, she hid a couple of knives on her before she stepped into the living room.
"Oops! I didn't know you were expecting any visitors!" she said in her best Valley Girl imitation.
Faith rolled her eyes as Buffy put the phone down. Leaning over to House, she said, "Buffy's just checking with Lisa."
"You're evil. I like
it," House said appreciatively.
"So you wouldn't mind another
roll in the hay, daddy
Unfortunately for House, he'd just taking a sip from his bottle of beer and, being caught off-guard by Faith's comment, he spit it all over the couch table. Laughing out loud, Faith patted House's arms in consolation.
However, before House could react, Faith's expression changed completely. Keeping the phone at her ear, she quickly jumped up, pulling House with her as she did so. Ignoring his protests, she pulled him towards the door, leaving him barely enough time to pick up his cane on the way.
"Lisa and Buffy are being attacked. Lisa's house, you drive."
--A/N: Muse speaking … writing. Sorry, but I accidentally gobbled up Author – but it's so not my fault! I mean, you just don't wave chocolate in front of me without sharing. Honestly… Now I just have to figure out this typing thing (well, at a faster speed than 5 words per hour) and I'm all set for the next chapter!