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Around the Bend

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Summary: Pfffttt. These guys thought that they had seen Apocalypses. They ain't seen nothing yet. And besides, who doesn't want to see the Batmobile peel out of the TARDIS?

Categories Author Rating Chapters Words Recs Reviews Hits Published Updated Complete
Multiple Crossings > GeneralGwalchavadFR1326,595021,36716 Dec 0916 Dec 09No

Chapter One

This is going to be a multi crossover. With a lot of worlds, ultimately, if I have the patience or the time to do it. It starts off with the worlds separately, with some blending starting in chapter 3, but the real big conglomeration of all the characters will occur in Chapter 4, so be patient. The story will start off with the good Doctor (owned by the BBC), the bad Dr. House before he was neutered by Fox (who owns house), DC Comics (that is just obvious who owns that), Buffy/Angel (Joss Whedon). I own nothing, ownership is by the guys in the parentheses. If I reference anything else, I don’t own it either, but I’ll address it per chapter, if there is a new fandom I’ll bleed into. And I will.

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Doctor Gregory House was not a man who paced much…the infarction that had caused the pain in his leg did not permit such an action. It had been 32 days, 2 hours and 43 minutes since House had determined that he was seeing things. For a man who had always defined himself by his intellect, the idea that his mind might be faulty was a crushing blow. To see dead people and events that never happened made him hate life more than he had ever before. While House might have been miserable, he could at least take solace in his ability to observe and put things together, in solving puzzles. Now he didn’t even have that.

“Oh I don’t know,” said a voice at the corner of the cell. House’s head shot up to see a casually dressed man leaning up against a wall. “Isn’t your job predicated on you seeing things that no one else sees? Couldn’t this whole thing just be an extension of that ability?”

“I preferred the dead hot blonde,” House, placing his head in his hands. “If I am going to keep going through this, send her back.”

The guy chuckled quietly to himself, shaking his head as he slid down the wall to sit opposite of the doctor. “Sorry House. Different guy. Now, I am going to need you to shut up for a minute and listen to me, cause you are a science type and getting you people to listen, much less believe anything I am about to tell you is a problem. You ready to listen?”

“Well I got about an hour before Nurse Ratchett gets back, so sure, why not. Generally when my figments talk to me I get closer to figuring out what is wrong with me.”

The stranger shook his head, and said “Jesus, what a whiner. Alright, here’s the deal. Amber, Kutner, all that you saw. Turns out it wasn’t a figment of your imagination, it was something more. You, along with several others like you, are being targeted. You, an FBI agent down in DC, and several others who make their living through observation and connecting the dots have been having ‘visions’ that aren’t exactly visions.

“Seems that these people are going to be important in some event that is coming up. Something big. So a certain party, goes by the name of the First, wanted to make sure that they would be incapable of doing what they were supposed to do. Now the First was unable to kill you directly or otherwise physically incapacitate you, so it started appealing to you covertly, as Amber and then as Kutner. Dead people…people who were important in your life, whether you admit it or not.

“You are a smart guy, House. A genius. But you have been building to a certain point, a certain capability. Before this you started seeing the answers to problems way before you should have. You were coming up with correct diagnoses before anyone was, before anyone else could. And that pissed a lot of people off and they started saying you were being reckless. Especially that douche Foreman. They were smart, and they wanted to be you, but they never can. You are the only guy, in this particular case, which can fulfill your role. And since they didn’t understand you, they tried to stop you. Certain parties were banking on them being successful. They miscalculated. So a more direct approach was taken.”

“Is this the part where you tell me I am a mystical warrior, and this too shall pass,” House asked with a quirk in his brow.

“You got a bum leg, you’re old, and your infatuation with your cane borders on a phallic obsession. Heaven forbid we give you a sword. I need you to be a doctor. An exceptional doctor. And one that won’t cave with what is about to happen.”

“What’s about to happen,” House asked, now more than a little curious. This felt different than before. There was no dull ache in the pit of his stomach, no nagging uncertainty. His mind started to clear and for the first time he started to feel like his old self.

“I am going to give you a sign that this was real. I am going to prove that this happened. To do that, it has to be apparent to everyone, not just you, what with your diagnosis of delusions and the like. After that, you need to fake it. You are smarter than everyone in here. You know what to say to get out, to demonstrate you are cured. Do it. Then go to your old office, before you go home. You’ll get instructions from there.”

“What is this all about,” House asked. “What are you preparing me for?”

“You are my first recruit you know,” the stranger mused. “I have to recruit an army stretched over creation, which, by the way, much bigger than you think. The number of Earths alone…well never you mind that. Like I said, you are a genius and you like puzzles. I’ll give you some clues and if you figure it out, you figure it out. But you are the first one I recruited. You want to know why?

“Because what’s coming is going to be big. It’s going to be messy. And there is going to be a lot of blood. And it’s going to need a doctor. Several, actually, but still.”

Plain guy started to pace, and started talking almost frantically. House started to get slightly alarmed as it almost seemed like an invisible energy started coursing through the man. “You are this world’s Holmes you know. You must have seen it. House, Holmes. Wilson, Watson. You live at 221B for Christ’s sake.”

The stranger stared into House’s eyes. “I don’t know if I can pull this off. I really don’t. But I need everyone at their best, including you. And to do that, you just need to remember one thing, just one thing, your alter ego said.” And with that, the guy turned, and simply vanished.

It was forty five minutes before Nurse Betty Salinger, aka Ratchett, showed up to take Dr. House to his group meeting. What she found was Dr. House staring thoughtfully at a sight that caused her to yelp and run for help. There, standing in mid air, were the words “When you eliminate the impossible, whatever remains--however improbable--must be the truth,” in what seemed to be fire. When the three orderlies ran down to the room to try to put out the flames (they were unable to, as it was unable to be quenched through any known means be it smothering, chemical or simple water) Dr. House confidently limped out of his room and said with a smile, “oh nurse, I am ready for group now.”

It had been a frustrating three weeks for the staff of the Mayfair clinic. After 24 hours the words faded and dispersed, but no one could account for how it got there or what it was composed of. Dr. House testified that he fell asleep and when he awoke the words were there. His story never varied no matter who questioned him. The staff even tried calling in House’s friend Wilson, but the patient’s story never varied. The room was of course thoroughly searched and there was nothing in the room that could possibly account for the phenomenon, and given the high level of security no one believed he could have smuggled anything in.

What was almost as big of a mystery was Dr. House’s turnaround in group. Prior to the event, as the staff was calling it, House was standoffish and did not willingly participate. Despite his problems, he knew that he was smarter than everyone in the clinic and dismissed every attempt to help him. After the event, he participated in every session, answered every question, and even cried a few times. Dr. Wilson warned the clinic that House had pulled this type of thing before, and that his knowledge of what was required to seem healthy had often been sufficient to skate through before. However, everyone at the clinic agreed; Dr. Gregory House had issues, but he had faced them, dealt with them, and was no longer the same man that had walked into the clinic.

So it was exactly 23 days after the event that Dr. Gregory House was released from the Mayfair clinic, where Wilson was waiting to take him home. Wilson was more than slightly concerned; he knew how screwed up House was and did not think that 2 months was enough time to resolve it all. However, psychiatry was not his specialty and he had to yield to the experts.

House moved as quickly as he could down the stairs of the clinic to where Wilson was waiting. Wilson looked like he didn’t know what to do, whether to embrace or shake hands with his friend. House wanted none of that. House had played nice for three weeks, and after having been convinced that maybe he wasn’t insane with the great flaming letters (awesome touch by the way, House had to admit), he wanted the next clue.

Thrusting his bag at his friend, House replied “The hospital and step on it.”

Wilson looked nonplussed, expecting House to demand to go home or to a bar, but not to the hospital. “House…Cuddy and I talked about when you should come back to work and we both agreed…”

House looked at him and, with utter contempt and incredulity said, “you think I am in a rush to go do work? To go catch up on my clinic hours? Do you want to check in? The tapioca is to die for. Now get me to the hospital, there is something I need.”

Wilson looked strangely at House, put the bag in back and climbed into the driver’s seat. He placed the keys in the ignition, paused, and looked over at House. “Look, now that you are out, about the letters…”

House looked at his best friend, and said in a flat voice “Hospital. Now. I think I left the oven on.”

The lobby of the hospital went as quiet as it ever got when House lurched into the building, a man on a mission, with Wilson following in his wake. No one expected to see House for months, and everyone remembered what usually accompanied a determined House entrance; yelling and generally a big mess. Cuddy looked up from the admittance desk and quickly approached House, confused to see him there.

“Dr. House, what are you doing here? I thought you were notified that you would not be starting work…”

“Cuddles, I am in a hurry,” House said moving to the elevator. “The blouse bunnies look magnificent, the ass is a little wider though, and I am sure the ankle biter is satisfying all of those annoying maternal feelings you have. Blah blah blah. I gotta get something, and then I’ll be out of your hair.”

The elevator door opened almost immediately and House walked in using his cane to keep Cuddy and Wilson out. “Sorry…this particular ride is for one.”

The doors closed and began to rise to House’s old office, with Cuddy looking exasperatedly at Wilson.

Wilson stared back, considering what just happened. “House gamed the Clinic, and he has been lying. He knows more than he is letting on about that fire, and is on his way to get something to help him figure things out further. Nothing has changed. He is heading to his office. Let’s go.”

House limped into the office that was once his home and started rustling through papers and scanning bookshelves for a clue. Unfortunately for him, his old teams were sitting around, working on something or other. Wilson was wrong. Things had changed. Old House would have popped his head in and tried to figure out the puzzle. But new House, by god new House was on the scent of the biggest mystery of his life. The best puzzle ever. Multiple earths? All of creation? Needs a doctor? Several? Game on.

Foreman and the rest strode into the smaller office. Foreman was pissed and scared that his position as leader, which he felt he so righteously deserved, would be taken from him. “House, what the hell do you think you are doing,” Foreman asked as papers flew over House’s shoulder.

“Busy,” House grumbled as Wilson and Cuddy rushed into the office. Foreman seized House by the shoulders and physically turned him around.

“House, this is my office, my team, and you are going to…”

“Let me stop you right there,” House said, “cause I don’t have time for this crap. No, Foreman, I don’t want my job back, so quit getting your panties in a bunch. There is something here I need, and as soon as I find it I am out of here so you can get back to diagnosing your patient. Just remember this; you are not now nor ever will be as good as me. You just won’t be. You won’t be as talented, you won’t be as fast, and you will never be as good looking. And you know what? I think you already know that. So quit getting angry at me, and stop trying to be me. If the best you there is is a pale imitation of me, well that’s not too bad because I am quite extraordinary. But for the love of God quit blaming me for you not being able to match up.”

House rounded on the rest of the group as Foreman stood dumbfounded, unsure how to respond. “Thirteen, take this from someone who made being childish an artform; your acts of ‘rebellion’ are lame. Get over it. You have Huntington’s. That sucks. Either man up or curl up and die. Cause right now all you are doing is taking up room. Taub, quit trying to be like Foreman. If Foreman is trying to be like me, trying to emulate him is just sad.” The two newcomers looked stunned as House turned to the older doctors. “Cameron, your self-righteousness would be quaint if it wasn’t just an outward manifestation of your own problems. The only reason you ‘loved’ me is cause you thought I was weaker than you, and you are terrified of being with someone who is better than you. Guess what kitten; I am better than you, I don’t need to be saved. Back off.

“Cuddy, I had a lot of time to think while I was in the looney bin, and this, whatever this is between us, would never work. I am an insensitive, crazy genius who only cares about the right answer, and you are an ordinary woman, with ordinary desires, and an outstanding rack. And the rack will start to droop soon anyway, meaning that you would bore me soon anyway. Enjoy the PI.”

Wilson looked flabbergasted as House stared at him. “Wilson…I don’t need to change. I never did. You need to quit using me as an excuse and do whatever it is you are going to do. Quit reacting and start acting, as they told us back at Mayfair. I am not your project. I am not your purpose. I am twice as smart as you, and three times as talented. I will be fine.”

House stared at Chase, and slowly smiled. “Chase…I got nothing for you. Of everyone I know, of everyone I have taught, you are the closest thing I have had to a success. You came in a sniveling, whiny dingo, and you are halfway competent and actually gained a spine. Good for you.” Chase smiled out surprise as everyone else slowly turned and looked at him, everyone else out of shock from what House just said to them.

House looked back at the bookshelf, where he noticed an old, blue covered book. He slowly walked over, and picked it up. “Hound of the Baskervilles…first edition,” House mused as he slowly opened the cover. Contained therein were a few pages. Despite the fact that Hosue wanted to read through the letter, he thought better of it, and moved towards the door.

“Well, I am off,” he said with a smirk. “My hiatus continues. Try not to burn the place down.” He glanced down at the book and mouthed the words Wilson and Watson. “Oh, and if you think you need me for a case, go to Wilson first. I have a hunch he would know best for when to contact me.” With a smile and a wave, the doctor departed.

Down the hall, half hidden in an alcove, the visitor straightened up and fixed his jacket. “Well…that went better than expected. Now, the real work begins.”
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