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Bad Company

Aftershocks 22.5: Nocturne

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Aftershocks 22.5: Nocturne

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TITLE: Aftershocks: A Story in Shattered Pieces
SUMMARY: Of all the unexpected things ...
CHARACTERS: Wilson, House.
RATING:
R for language and themes (gen fic).
WARNINGS: Details the aftermath of events in Bad Company, a rough, violent story. Aftermath isn't always pretty; may distress some readers. Adult themes and adult language.
SPOILERS: No.
DISCLAIMER: Don't own 'em. Never will.
NOTES: The pieces of this shattered story are numbered. The first number signifies the number of days that have elapsed since the original event in Bad Company; the second number signifies when the fic occurs during that day.


Nocturne



Wilson floats slowly into consciousness, not because he's hurting (he's not, and it's so nice) but because something has changed. His entire right side, the one with the good hand and no broken clavicle, feels strangely warm. Also, something is resting lightly over the crown of his head. It doesn't feel threatening, but it's pulling him quietly out of sleep, as his brain tries to connect these new sensations and attach some kind of meaning to them.

It resolves itself when he realizes that there is a hand laid softly on his shoulder. The warmth is that of a long, solid human body that has formed an arc against Wilson's side. The pressure on Wilson's crown is a chin resting there. It's definitely House; who else would it be? But it is strange in the extreme. House has certainly never done anything like this before.

"House?"

House says nothing, but digs his fingers firmly into Wilson's shoulder and draws an unsteady breath. He's waiting for a reaction, it seems; waiting to see whether he will be allowed to stay and to ... do whatever it is he's doing. Wilson lies still, bewildered. His arm's wedged between House's body and his own, and what with that and his injuries he can't move much, but oddly—despite his recently acquired claustrophobia—he doesn't feel trapped. At this hour, the dark room seems secure and forgiving, ready to keep whatever confidences it's offered. Wilson decides that whatever this is, it'll be okay. He mumbles the only thing he can think of.

"Talk t'me."

At first it seems that House won't. For about a minute neither man moves or speaks. 

"They didn't tell me," House says, finally, and he sounds like he's dying of thirst. "You know that, don't you? No warnings. I didn't know." His chin is still hooked over Wilson's head and so it's easy to hear the strain, the tightness in his throat. In truth, Wilson didn't know there'd been no notice given before the violence began. He had desperately hoped that it was so, but he couldn't make himself ask. If the answer had been that threats had been made and House had ignored them ...

"Every day," House continues, "someone wants to know how you're doing. Someone; my team, Cuddy. They think I'm being nice. House gives a damn, let's have a parade." There's a pause, harsh breaths, and then a low rasp of grief: "They don't know it's my fault. Oh God. Wilson—"

And then House is trying to shield him, as if the roof were caving in. House's damaged right leg stretches over Wilson's knees; an arm reaches across his chest, hopelessly seeking to shelter him from the bomb that has already dropped. That heavy head is pressing into Wilson's neck, into his cheek, and he doesn't need to see the sorrow on House's face. He can feel it. Some part of Wilson's mind numbly tries to understand what's happening. Is he dreaming? No. Is there a logical reason why House would—no. Yes, actually, he corrects himself. There's a very good reason.
 
He turns his face slightly toward House, taking what's being given. House is brokenly choking out phrases, thought they'd kill you, no warning, I didn't know, I'd have paid. I'd have paid. Wilson.

It's blinding, this sudden rift that has opened up in House's iron curtain. The shock and numbness burn away like cobwebs in the fire. He wriggles his elbow until House notices and moves just a little. Just enough to allow Wilson to work his right arm beneath House's side and wrap it around his back. House has fallen silent again, but Wilson has already learned the things he really wanted to know.

It is House's fault that he's in this sorry state, and then again it isn't, and sometimes it matters who's to blame. Sometimes it doesn't.
 
 
  • I have been enjoying this story very much. This installment was great, *hugs both House and Wilson and you guys* Thanks :)
  • YAY YOU MADE MY WEEK.

    Three chapters.

    And this scene.

    Oh gosh.

    I'm speechless. Erm, just about.

    Love the last lines. Says so much about Wilson's willingness to forgive, and his understanding that, while it actually was House's fault--well, it really wasn't, too.

    Can't wait for tomorrow. And not just 'cause it's the PREMIERE.
  • God damn it. Now I can never mentally mock those who have cried during a fic, because I just teared up. Just the slightest bit, but there's no denying it.

    Today's update was beautiful, and I'm going to have to read them all a few more times. Thank you for making this complex and upsetting, with no easy-outs or easy answers, with character flaws and, to be honest, for some House-and-Wilson-in-the-same-bed... though, like I said, it was more beautiful than anything else.

    Ugh, you guys are awesome.
  • Ugh, that was so, unbelievably sad. When House tries to shield Wilson, it's almost as though he's trying to protect him and keep him there at the same time. House seems so desperate for forgiveness - from himself and from Wilson - to make sure that Wilson doesn't leave him, and it's so emotionally taxing to read, but it's wonderful.
  • Wow, again more beautifully evocative writing. House and Wilson in the same bed and House worn to shreds and wrapping himself over Wilson just gave me a big, old lump in my throat.
  • Crying so much...can't leave real comment, sorry.

    "They don't know it's my fault. Oh God. Wilson --"

    That's about where I shattered, in case you'd like to mark it down. (I assume y'all have a system whereby you calculate the proper point to stab readers in the heart.)
    • Yeah, that's pretty much where House shattered too.

      I assume y'all have a system whereby you calculate the proper point to stab readers in the heart

      Don't look at us. We're at the mercy of Wilson and House, who repeatedly break us into tiny little writer bits.
  • You made me cry.

    But it was an uplifting cry. Like a burden off my chest that's been settling there since the start of all of this.

    Some powerful shit went down tonight fo'sure.
  • Wow. You made me cry with this chapter. Cry. This is a first.

    I was so sure something would break (or that they will finally realize that it was already broken) with all the tension between House and Wilson. I am so relieved with how things turned out. Apart is not where they should be right now. It might seem like a logical choice, moving apart since they are a constant pain to each other, but being apart is much much worse than where they are right now.

    I was supposed to comment that I adore the chapter before this. The fact that House is scared of caring for Wilson, nursing him back to health because the better he does at it, the sooner he will lose Wilson. But he can't not care for Wilson. He will take his punishment head on (he thinks he deserves so much more pain), just like is he willing to be hit by that train coming at him at full speed.

    But just as I was about to comment, I read this chapter and I teared up. And I am now a mess. Brilliant work.
  • "It's blinding, this sudden rift that has opened up in House's iron curtain. The shock and numbness burn away like cobwebs in the fire. He wriggles his elbow until House notices and moves just a little. Just enough to allow Wilson to work his right arm beneath House's side and wrap it around his back. House has fallen silent again, but Wilson has already learned the things he really wanted to know.

    It is House's fault that he's in this sorry state, and then again it isn't, and sometimes it matters who's to blame. Sometimes it doesn't."

    Wow. There it is..right there. The crux of the matter.. the point at which Wilson, should he have chosen to do so, could have firmly planted the point of the knife into House's heart..mortal wound. I wonder if he's not angry enough or hurt enough...or just wouldn't. Truth is, Martin is just the sort of sadistic sob that enjoys human degredation and destruction enough that he was probably glad when House gave him an excuse...probably would have paid for the oportunity. As a Texan, I am really hoping that the old "What comes around, goes around" maxim holds true for Martin..and that paying the piper proves to be very expensive, indeed.

    Mick
    • Wilson, should he have chosen to do so, could have firmly planted the point of the knife into House's heart..mortal wound. I wonder if he's not angry enough or hurt enough...or just wouldn't.

      This time? It never even remotely occurred to Wilson to do anything hurtful to House. There was simply no way he could witness such open brokenness and pain in House, and not respond like this.
  • Been reading for months, but I do believe I have yet to review. This was so beautiful and heartbreaking that I just couldn't not review, though. This made my chest tight in all the right places, very good job. =)
  • Greetings!

    No tears, just a quiet, deep-down rush of rightness. Wilson does understand the very important difference between sleeping with and sleeping with... and understands as well the value of the deep, dark hours of the night, when truth that will never see the light of day may be spoken.

    One wonders if the rest of the tale will now be told as well... or if it will be saved for another day, as will the rest of this tale.

    *going to go find a little sleep of my own*
    -Katrina
  • You do realise you just broke the habit of a lifetime...I dunno whether it's the music I'm listening to or just the fact that I'm a hormonal wreck at the best of times, but I swear I am sat here completely tearing up. 'I'd have paid'...oh dear God...that's just so fantastic. And now I feel a lot like a bitch for not commenting before...it's just that by the time I get round to reading this, everyone has already said what I want to say...

    Dammit. Can't think straight. You rawk so hard for this...

    Gonna go and fetch a tissue now.
    • Hey, don't feel bad. It's nice to know you're out there!

      House breaks our hearts too, you know. He tells us these things and we sit at the keyboard with our chests aching even as we write the stuff.

      And then he relents the next time and says brilliantly obnoxious things to make us laugh, because he's House, and oh how we love him.
  • *wipes away the tears*

    wonderful. and wonderful last line.
  • We as readers are so spoiled and lucky to have this series. All three chapters today are wonderful in their own way. The first one full and anger, unjustness and pain, the second one gut-wrenchingly insightful and sad. And then you heal them and us all with this final gem.

    Don't know what to say, but please keep going for as long as possible!

  • Now I'm all teary-eyed *reaches blindly for tissues*

    Awesome chapter. They all were. Wow.
    Great job, all!
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