black_cigarette (black_cigarette) wrote,

Aftershocks 30.1: The Evening News

TITLE: Aftershocks: A Story in Shattered Pieces
SUMMARY: House tells him everything he wants to know.
CHARACTERS: Wilson, House.
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.
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.

The Evening News

The sky is gently darkening as they roll through town. A soft breeze carries the smells of car exhaust, restaurants, cut grass and cooling concrete. It's familiar, comforting. The food scents would probably make him insane, had Cuddy not shown up last night with a quart each of egg drop, hot-and-sour, and miso soup. It all proved blendable and delicious, each variety a blessed reprieve from his culinary hell.

Cuddy herself had been a feast for the senses: red silk, perfume that hinted of orchids and fresh water, and a lilting cadence as she'd chatted and laughed. He'd forgotten about that, just how pleasant she really could be, until last night. It wasn't that he wanted to do anything about it, but it was nice to have someone around who wasn't all hard edges, leather and sarcasm.

He takes off his Stealth Hat (that's what House calls it) and lets his hair get mussed in the wind. Wilson loves the Corvette, even as a passenger. In the city, though, House drives like a grandmother, because the other drivers are morons who might hurt his precious car. It's frustrating and funny to watch House, the very spirit of recklessness, doing a measly forty miles per hour down the strip.

Wilson leans back, content to relax and listen while House -- who seems more cheerful than he's been for several days now -- rambles on.

"We had a winner today," he says, and Wilson knows that he's talking about the Clinic Prize, which is their own personal version of the Darwin Awards.  "Middle manager. Some bank or other. Tripped on her own pointy heels and crashed right into a wall," he crows, and looks over as if to see whether Wilson's amused.  He is. "The best part is that it happened at a conference, during a blindfolded 'trust building exercise'."

It still hurts to laugh, but Wilson chuckles, and House continues. "The nasal fracture was a shame, because it ruined a perfectly good rhinoplasty. Bled all over her fake boobs. I ... might have said something insensitive."

Wilson raises his eyebrows in silent mockery, No! Not you?

"Something about her life being saved by her front-impact airbags."

Wilson sputters and then, because he's trying not to, he starts laughing in earnest. That causes his abdominals to flutter and spasm. He leans forward, making the hand sign for Stop it before you kill me. At least House has the decency to let him recover before resuming the daily report.

This is way more fun than the news Wilson gets when he goes in for his medical appointments. Cameron has to find him; Cuddy has to find him; everyone wants to say hello. They tell nice, cheery stories of the good things that are happening while he's away. Wilson nods and pretends he cares, which he will eventually, but right now? He does not. It's so much easier just to be around House, who knows him better than that. House brings the dirt.

"Remember Evans, in the lab? So fired. Turns out," House says, "it's against the rules to smoke pot in the morgue. Who knew? And what kind of idiot brings weed to a hospital, anyway?" He smirks at Wilson, who offers a one-shouldered shrug.

"I din't inhale," he says. "Can't say 'bout m'patients, though."

"You never got me any of the good stuff, Doctor Jimmy."

"You never got cancer, y'lying bastard."

"At least I'm not inbred, like our mutant lawyer friend. Ooooohhhh, you haven't heard, have you?" House is glowing with a wicked joy. "He's engaged!" Wilson's eyes widen. If his jaw weren't wired it would fall wide open.

"Kidding. Yer kidding. To his -- uh --"

"To his lovely Christine, formerly Christopher."


House enjoys this so much. He makes twisty faces, spewing lewd remarks about the uses of the lawyer's mutant sixth finger, while Wilson tries not to hurt himself laughing. As they coast to a halt at an intersection, House falls silent like a radio that's been switched off. Wilson blinks at him in mild confusion. In the dusky, fading light, it's hard to tell, but he thinks House just went pale.

"You okay?"

"Peachy," says House, and shifts his gaze away from the other cars, onto the road ahead of them. "Let's go."

The light turns green and House abandons all caution. He hits the gas, shifts gears so fast that it makes Wilson's body ache, and speeds wildly for the freeway.
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