Wilson was laying on the couch stroking Sara and feeling sorry for himself. He thought back over the week, as Ann Wilson belted out Alone. It wasn’t his typical kind of music, but he couldn’t deny the woman could sing, and the lyrics seemed to fit his mood.
He fell into a reverie of the previous week. How nice it had been to have some of House’s attention and just to hang out with him again. He’d pretended to be annoyed when he’d come home to find House in his kitchen, but that hadn’t been the truth. Truth was, it had felt like coming home for the first time since he’d asked the older man to move out.
That was something that had confused him ever since Sam had left. He let other people believe that he was upset because of her, and at first, that had been the truth. The fact was, though, that he realized soon after she left that they never would’ve worked anyway and what he really missed was a certain, grumpy, limping doctor’s presence around his home.
“Heart? Really Wilson? I suppose Barracuda I could’ve forgiven, but this? Come on.” House’s voice rang out through the semi-darkness as the song came to an end, causing Wilson to jump out of his skin and sending the cat running for shelter.
“Jesus Christ, House! What the Hell are you doing here?!” Wilson gasped, clutching a fist to his chest like he was having a heart attack. He sat up on the sofa and turned on the side table lamp, brightening the room so he could see the man who’d been consuming his thoughts for the past few weeks standing live and in person in his living room.
House limped his way across the room and shut off the stereo. “Funny, seems like you’re not happy to see your bestest bud,” he said with a mock frown as he made his way over to the couch and sat down next to Wilson.
“More like scared shitless. How did you get in here, anyway?”
House held up his keys and grinned. “Forget so soon that I used to live here? You really didn’t hear the door open over your classic emo tunes, did you? What was next on the playlist? Owner of a Lonely Heart? Total Eclipse of the Heart? Come on, you can tell me.”
Wilson glared. “You know they are,” he admitted begrudgingly. Those songs had been a staple of his recovery process after all of his divorces.
“Yeah, yeah I know.” The tone in House’s voice had changed as suddenly as he had appeared in the apartment. There wasn’t even a hint of teasing anymore, just a sort of soft resignation with a hint of sadness.
“Does Cuddy know you’re here?”
“Believe it or not, I’m a grown man and I’m allowed to come out and play whenever I want.” House leaned back casually on the sofa as he spoke, draping his arms along the back.
Wilson narrowed his eyes in suspicion. “Even in the middle of the night?”
“Middle of the night?” House barked out laughter. “Wilson, it’s only ten o’clock. You really have turned into the crazy cat lady.”
A grin spread across Wilson’s face for the first time in quite awhile as he lolled his head back against the back of the couch, coming in contact with House’s bicep. He hadn’t realized they were sitting so close until that moment and he froze, not wanting to move away and yet not sure that the accidental touch was okay.
When, after a few moments, nothing changed, Wilson let out a breath and relaxed again. “Thanks.” The words were soft and almost inaudible, almost as imperceptible as the nod House gave in reply.
They sat in a companionable silence after that, both reveling in how much they could say to each other without saying anything at all.