SUMMARY: He's crossed a line he never meant to cross.
CHARACTERS: Wilson, House
RATING: R for language and themes (gen fic).
WARNINGS: This is a very alternate universe. Adult themes and adult language.
DISCLAIMER: Don't own 'em. Never will.
NOTES: The stories from this ficverse are numbered by chapter and scene. Links to all chapters are here.
House lies still, holding the oxygen mask over his face, wishing he could go to sleep and wake up somewhere else, or not at all.
At least the mask blocks out the scent -- all except for the slight traces on House's own nose, on his lips, his hands, his chin. It's not that Wilson stinks; he simply smells like the vulgaris that he is, and that wasn't a problem until House took blood from the man. Human blood. Merely the latest of the many, many things that were never supposed to happen.
Wilson's head rests on the bed, his right arm folded neatly beneath his cheek. His left arm is still stretched across House's ribs, because House can't wake him and is too weak to move him. It feels like being held in a gentle, unwanted embrace. This is so wrong. If he could, he'd shove the man onto the floor.
He can't quite decide if his experiment on Wilson was a success. It was, he supposes, in the sense that he got his answer: he knows now that Wilson, to save himself, will allow a haemovore to take his blood.
Unfortunately, House has also learned that he, to save himself, will take that blood. It's easy, so much easier than he had imagined. Perhaps the most appalling thing of all is that it didn't even taste bad.
House had thought the flavor would be muddy, acidic, full of that gamy musk that taints the blood of most carnivores. It wasn't. It tasted of copper and cream, rich, full of minerals, subtle and ... good. Once he had started to take, his starved body hadn't wanted to stop. House had to force himself, for his own sake. His weakened system can't handle too much, too soon. Neither can Wilson's, for that matter; the man isn't acclimated stock.
He stares at the small marks he has left on Wilson's skin, and his stomach twists.
Are you that far gone? asks an accusing voice in his mind. Gonna re-enact the Tragedy of Newland? Get yourself a bloodboy like those perverts on Brielle?
"I'm stranded," he mutters back to himself, "in the middle of the Great Cosmic Armpit. So yes. It seems I'm that far gone."
It probably won't make any difference; they'll crash, or get taken by raiders, or -- most likely -- drift until they run out of food and starve. In the unlikely event that they live, he'll unload Wilson just as soon as he can.
Will you really? asks that internal voice, very softly this time.
"Yes," he insists. It's bizarre, taking blood from that hairless, human skin. Unnatural.
Easy, though. It's very, very easy.
And it is; House can't deny that. It's so easy, and so foreign, and so wrong. He'll do it only for as long as he absolutely must.
Or until you both die, his brain helpfully reminds him. Whichever comes first.
House groans, turns his head -- and realizes that he can't reach the bedside cart with the merstellin and syringes. Wilson -- idiot -- pushed the thing away to make room for himself and his chair. There'll be no dosing himself into oblivion, no matter how much he might want to.
He shuts his eyes and tries to will himself to sleep.