My sister was in L.A. on vacation recently, and she picked this up for me--apparently, it's the film canister in which the footage for an upcoming episode of House was stored. I figure that, since episodes have to be filmed in advance, it was the footage for a January episode--? Maybe the one on the ninth?
Anyway, I thought it was pretty awesome and wanted to share it--xD. Merry Christmas/Happy Holidays!
(And a story:)
Discounting sex, which was, of course, incomparable (and in a league of its own), there were two extracurricular activities House figured he’d always enjoyed—running and playing the piano.
He’d discovered running in elementary school, when the stereotypical fat-with-no-self-confidence bully stole his lunch for what seemed like the eighty-second time and he decided to get it back. One magnificent thirty-yard dash and one not-so-magnificent flying leap later, he was sitting gracefully atop McNeal’s head and McNeal was eating sand. House learned he had the proper build for running—tall and thin—and the proper motivation as well—half the time he ran because he didn’t want to get his ass kicked, the other half because he wanted to kick someone else’s. Things evened out, and eventually he started running for sport and pleasure instead. He’d never really liked fighting anyway.
Piano came after running, in high school. House was placed in a Piano 1 class his senior year because no other electives would fit his schedule. He was unsure about the idea at first, but he caught on fast—damn fast, as his father would have said in those days—and remained at least a full chapter ahead of his classmates for the rest of the semester. At home there was a baby grand which soon became his favorite haunt; until college, he divided his time between its polished bench, studies, the track, and lacrosse.
In college, House had no access to a piano. He did, however, have access to a track, and made use of it every chance he got.
In medical school, House got stuck with a roommate who’d wind up changing his life forever (and, regrettably, worming his way in on the list entitled “People Who Can Make House Smile”)—a Mr. James Wilson, brown-haired, brown-eyed, shy and remarkably devious, ladies’ man and geek, Hitchcock fan and great chef. For some reason—Lord knew why—they got along. They didn’t always get along, sure—Wilson was too patient for House, House too childish for Wilson—but something was there, some hidden similarity that drew them together regardless.
Wilson didn’t run or tickle the ivories. He played the guitar, though, and could hold his own against House in verbal banter any day of the week. And, of course, he could always make House smile.
A year or two into school, Wilson’s life seemed to be crashing down around his ears. His mother died, his brother dropped out of college and disappeared. Wilson’s grades fell—he slept less (not that House cared, but the tossing and turning became annoying eventually, and that bedside lamp—good Lord), drank more, and spoke hardly at all. House was beginning to think he’d have to solve the problem somehow when Wilson suddenly perked up again. Nothing obvious had changed; they hadn’t even had the funeral yet. It was just plain weird.
Though he burned with curiosity, House tried to forget about his friend’s abrupt personality alteration until he accidentally discovered what was going on anyway. He’d open the closet to grab his running shoes and they’d be missing, but the next day they’d be back, slightly dirtier and smelling of another man’s cologne. Obviously, either extraterrestrials were performing experiments on sweaty Nikes or Wilson was running, and House suspected the latter. Because the shoes tended to vanish when Wilson had a particularly bad day, House waited until such was the case and hid out by the football field. Needless to say, he wasn’t disappointed.
Fifteen minutes after House’s arrival, Wilson appeared on the scene, lugging some very familiar footwear. He sat in the bleachers, laced them up, and began running laps. The shoes were a size-and-a-half too big and Wilson was not exactly a track star—he was shorter and slightly stouter than House, after all—but there was something graceful in his stride, something fascinating about the lone figure moving in circles, hemmed in by the grass of the field, getting rid of some excess frustration. House was amused, annoyed, and pleased—Wilson felt pretty damn comfortable (too comfortable) with him if he was okay with stealing his shoes.
While House carried his tape player and blasted rock music in his ears as he ran (jazz was for wine and relaxation, rock for running), Wilson ran with no accompaniment other than the slap of rubber on sand and the huff of breath in the evening silence.
But those shoes—those damn shoes—were too big.
For some reason, this bothered House—perhaps because he’d always liked order and fit, perhaps because Wilson would get bloodstains on them if he happened to fall and snap his fool neck, who knew.
A week later, when the running hadn’t let up, House bought another pair of shoes in a smaller size. He left them where Wilson was certain to find them and sighed with relief because they began disappearing in place of his own. They hadn’t been expensive; it was no big deal, and no words were ever exchanged on the subject, no acknowledgment made by either man. House ran when he knew he wouldn’t encounter Wilson—if Wilson hadn’t told him, he wanted privacy, and House could be less than annoying sometimes—and promptly forgot the entire incident. Soon Wilson’s life took a turn for the better and the shoes began gathering dust, but House always knew his friend was depressed when the closet was emptier than usual.
House’s infarction changed everything, including his friendship with Wilson. He couldn’t even walk—running was no longer so important. And he had no way of knowing, though he might not have cared if he had, that Wilson frequented tracks again in the Nikes from med school.
Eventually, however, House recovered. It wasn’t easy and life sucked a whole hell of a lot more than it had before, but he could work, and work and music became everything. He longed to run again, and his dreams were often filled with the rhythmic sound of rubber on sand.
Then, of course, came the ketamine.
House ran to the hospital; he learned to skateboard and threw his cane gleefully in the closet. Maybe he even felt… happier.
And the day after he returned to work, he discovered the box of new shoes on his desk, and he smiled.