eric_foreman: Eric Foreman from House - eyebrow raised (eyebrow)
eric_foreman ([personal profile] eric_foreman) wrote in [community profile] alwaysright2009-10-11 09:27 pm

October 30, 2007 - Midmorning

Going to the lecture theatre was out of the question. Foreman didn't care if House was waiting there with a case, bright-eyed and eager to work. His job had changed, and he'd act like it. He took the elevator up to the Diagnostics office instead, hanging up his coat carefully. Standing there, with it still in his hands, he remembered the dry-cleaning and fresh shirt he'd left in the back of his car. What a wonderful idea, to go straight to Amber's place after work, to spend time with her and ignore distractions...Jesus, maybe they were kidding themselves. If they couldn't make it through a car ride without arguing, what chance did they have to spend a whole evening together? It couldn't possibly work out if they switched between sex, no matter how fantastic, and fights that didn't have any resolution. He grimaced and spun on his heel, determined not to think about it. He'd make a pot of coffee, read the paper, scrounge for breakfast. He'd ignore House until Diagnostics had a case. He'd check in with Cameron, work his clinic hours, and he'd organize the department. He wouldn't get ahead of himself and start thinking about tonight.

Yet Foreman still wanted to go. He felt safer with Amber when his two worlds, the personal and the professional, weren't intersecting. They'd had a real conversation at the restaurant, both before and after the situation had devolved to something more shameless. They could talk. Just not about work. The most important thing in both their lives--leaving it aside wouldn't give them much of a range to discuss.

Time. That's what it took. Foreman opened a packet of coffee grounds and started the machine. Time was unlikely to fix the things he and Amber were arguing about, or soften either of their positions. So Amber was the cut-throat bitch? Foreman had been called his share of names for being ambitious. He'd thrown friends to the wolves before, too...he'd known, he'd known all along that Cameron would wait for House to read her article, while Foreman just shoved the papers under his nose and barked, "Sign this." House had glanced up, eyebrows raised, gaze turning evaluating, about to start picking. "It's an article," Foreman said. "I'm submitting it. You're signing off on it, because you know that I wouldn't send in anything sub-standard, and if you wanted to peer-review you would, so no, you don't need to read it first."

House had actually--for one moment in his fucking life--not said anything, but reached for the pen Foreman thrust at him. He signed with a flourish, offering the pages back to Foreman with a mimed air of wounded innocence, but Foreman hadn't missed his smirk. House had known, just as well as Foreman had, that Cameron's article was still sitting on his desk. House had signed because it was a joke to him to play them off each other. Foreman had won; Cameron had tried to scold him, as if that made him a bad little boy. No. Not going to happen. He wasn't guilty. It didn't matter. He'd won.

Wasn't that what Amber did? Wasn't that the side of herself she put out for the whole world to see? Foreman had told Cameron they weren't friends. They weren't friends. But that made it easier, didn't it? That mitigated his responsibility.

I don't hide myself behind false niceties, opening doors just to make people like me.

Foreman didn't either. Amber just didn't know that yet.

Shaking his head, Foreman poured himself a cup of coffee, fixing it the way he liked it. He'd promised he'd ask Cameron for cases. He still wanted Amber to trust him, and this was part of his job. There was probably nothing. After he'd confirmed that, he could retreat to the conference room and work on House's backlog of paperwork all he wanted, and avoid the candidates as long as he liked. He left the office on the way to the elevator, coffee in one hand, stomach rumbling.

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