“Wake up you son of a bitch,”
House’s slumber was shattered by the Wrath of Cuddy. His eyes snapped open, feigning total alertness, a trick learned by most doctors during the sleep deprivation experiment otherwise known as residency. When he realized it was Cuddy, he closed his eyes again, hoping to ignore her out of existence.
“You’ve really done it this time. I hope you’re proud of yourself.”
He struggled to catch up with a conversation that seemed to be taking place without him.
“What? Calling the patient a bitch? That’s not even the worst thing I’ve done this week.”
“No it’s not. You might think it’s funny to treat your staff like garbage and see how many different ways you can make them miserable. It’s not.”
“Well it can be if you do it right.”
“Oh come on, is this about that article thing?”
“Yeah, that article. Cameron came to me looking for sympathy and I had to pretend it didn’t matter because it was the professional thing to do. But you know what? You were wrong. Foreman was wrong. Now Foreman thinks you actually like him, which will make your next little racial remark that much more painful. Chase wants his replacement daddy to fix everything. I saw Cameron before she left. She tried to make up with Foreman and you know what happened?”
“Hot sex in an exam room?”
“He acted like you.”
That made House grimace. He liked having acolytes, but didn’t need imitators.
“How’d my girl take it? Plucky, brave Cameron?”
“That wasn’t exactly the impression I got,” she shot back pointedly. “I never should have let her come back after she quit. She’s too good a doctor to be destroyed by you. I thought she’d get over the crush and be able to learn from you, but I also thought you might act enough like a human being to treat her with respect.”
House couldn’t admit he might be in the wrong. He needed a way to deflect attention from his own screw-ups and found it in Cuddy’s concern.
“You know, Lisa, if you really want kids, it’s not too late to adopt. Or maybe I could be your sperm donor,” he leered.
House’s cell phone rang, derailing the conversation. All he could make out at first was very loud music. Must be a wrong number.
“Hey House,” Cameron’s voice came through loud, clear and drunk. She was shouting over the music. He held the phone away from his ear, allowing Cuddy to hear. “House, can you hear me? It’s amateur stripper night at The Foxy Lady on Route 20. I’m on in half an hour. Get Chase and Foreman. Come on down!”
House shook his head in disbelief. She had to be kidding. How could Cameron strip? She had no boobs to speak of. He supposed he should go down and drag her out of there before she embarrassed herself, but it didn’t seem necessary. Cuddy had listened to the phone call and started moving before House could even think of getting up.
He did notice something before she left. Either the room was very cold or Cuddy was more interested in seeing Cameron strip than House would ever be.
Traffic and construction were soon competing with House and Foreman for a position at the top of Lisa Cuddy’s personal shit list. How had Cameron managed to drive there, get plastered and decide that taking her clothes off was a good idea in the scant amount of time since Cuddy had seen her crying in the ladies room? Cuddy had been unable to reach out. She’d maintained her Hospital Administrator role, when she wanted to pull the distraught young woman into her arms and comfort her. Fuck all that, she thought. She was not going to let Dr. Cameron do something she’d regret, just because Greg House couldn’t bother adhering to the rules of polite society.
There it was “Foxxy Lady” in garish neon blinking from the opposite side of route 20. She signaled and started pulling over, smiling gamely at the driver of the Volvo she had to cut off to do it. He beeped rudely and she added him to the list. The world was really pissing her off today, including the doorman who assumed she was there to perform and felt her up with his eyes before taking her ten dollars.
Cuddy made her way through the crowd looking for Cameron, before she saw the stage and realized she was too late. “The Boys Are Back In Town” was being played full volume.
Remember that chick who used to dance a lot? Every night she’d be on the floor shaking what she’d got. Man when I tell ya she was cool, she was red hot. I mean she was steaming.
Cuddy found herself transfixed by the sight of Cameron prowling the stage, hair down, shirt unbuttoned, flashing the crowd to whoops and hollers, then demurely covering herself again. During the guitar solo, she gyrated, bumping and grinding against the pole. Cuddy felt her mouth getting dry. At the end of the solo, Cameron made another circuit of the stage before triumphantly removing the blouse and throwing it into the audience where it was fought over and probably shredded. Cuddy pushed through the crowd, trying to get closer to the stage.
No tits? Greg, you are so wrong. They’re perfect.
Up close, she could see how excited Alison was getting from her own performance.
With a sultry lick of her lips, Cameron unbuttoned her jeans and started peeling them off. I came here to stop this. Cuddy reminded herself, but couldn’t move, except to lean closer to the stage and try to catch Cameron’s eye. Impossible with the stage lights on.
The crowd was clapping louder and louder as Cameron pulled down the jeans, revealing her lace thong. She kicked the pants away with a flourish.
God she’s beautiful. Long legs. That hair. Those lips.
Boys are back in town again. Spread the word around.
The song was winding down and the crowd was surging toward the stage. She could see men brandishing money, wanting to give it to Cameron. She wondered if Cameron were drunk enough to do the other stupid thing that might happen after taking her clothes off to such tumultuous applause. She made a decision.
No one’s taking that home, but me.
She fished into her bag until she found a twenty-dollar bill.
Cameron was still doing her victory lap. The cheers were taking on a decisively nasty quality. The only way off the stage were the stairs Cuddy was determined that she’d be between those stairs and anyone else who had improper designs. That her own designs were less than proper was completely beside the point.
Alison was tipsily waving to the crowd as she started down the stairs and practically fell into Cuddy’s arms. ”Dr. Cuddy?” she said in a daze.
“Yeah, but for 20 bucks you should start calling me Lisa,” she replied stuffing money in the strap of the thong. She looked for some response from Cameron, whose look of confusion broke into one of her more charming girlish smiles in counterpoint to her near nakedness. “Lisa, I think we’d better get out of here.”
“Good idea. Back exit?”
Now they had to shout. A near riot was forming as Cuddy kept her hand around Cameron’s waist and half pulled, half carried her out of the club. The shouts seemed evenly divided between “Fuckin’ dykes” and “You go girl.” Cuddy didn’t care. She’d had years to practice not caring either way.
The exit led to an alley behind the club. Lisa could make out the lights of the highway and a gas station. Allison was naked except for the thong, shivering, vulnerable and tipsy. In good conscience she couldn’t, except that Allison was clinging, pulling and looking up at Cuddy in a way that made her feel naked as well.
Lisa found her hands moving toward those small, perfect breasts and the minute she touched one, she heard Allison moan and push back against her.
“I thought you wanted House.”
“So did I, But even when I did, every time he made some remark about you…about your breasts, it made me think about you. About touching you,”
Cuddy pushed Cameron against the wall of the club, and kissed her, gently probing against the soft lips until she felt them give way and invite her in. She closed her eyes and tried to breath, tried not to feel dizzy, tried to believe she could keep her hands on Allison all night if she wanted, that the nipples were rising under her touch, that even in the cold night air, Allison was sweating, that it was all for her. She let her hands move further down to find out that Cameron was hot inside, wet, ready to grind against her fingers, moan into her mouth, finally break the kiss to beg for something that didn’t even have to be asked for. She opened her own eyes making sure she saw Cameron’s expression of longing, needing, oh my god, almost there, break into a gasp and a long moan and finally a silent scream of ecstasy.
“Oh my god!”
Was that her or Cameron? It was Cameron. Slowly realizing what had just happened and what had happened before that and what might be happening later.
“I’ll drive you home,” said Cuddy, taking off her coat, to cover Cameron for what might be a dicey walk back to the parking lot.
“My car?” Cameron said, unsteadily.
“We’ll get it tomorrow.”
“I don’t think we’ll be seeing them again.”
“I liked that blouse.”
“So did I. So did a whole bunch of yahoos.”
“I probably shouldn’t drink.”
“Not without a keeper.”
“I’m sorry, Dr. Cuddy,”
Cuddy sighed. Cameron was already having regrets. They walked around the Foxxy Lady, back to the parking lot. Cameron looked like a girl playing dress up in her mommy’s coat.
“I’m not. You looked hot up there. But please don’t do it again. I’m afraid it wouldn’t reflect well on the hospital.”
Now it was Cameron’s turn to sigh, clearly fearing the hospital administrator’s disapproval.
“If you feel the need to take your clothes off and act like a slut, just give me a call,” she said trying to keep the grin out of her voice.
“What if it’s during the day?”
“What do you think exam rooms are for?”