Written by: John C. Kelley
Directed by: Greg Yaitanes
Transcribed by: Tammy (beckston)
DISCLAIMER: We don't own "HOUSE." It's owned by FOX and NBC/Universal, and produced by Heel and Toe Films and Bad Hat Harry Productions. This transcript is unofficial, and should UNDER NO CIRCUMSTANCES be copied or distributed, especially for commercial use.
[Scene opens on a rear shot of Alice, sitting at her desk and typing very quickly on an old black manual typewriter. The camera pans up to a large framed poster on the wall. The poster is a book cover. Jack Cannon, Boy Detective, The Castle of Stone and Light by Alice Tanner.
Cut to a close-up of Alice’s fingers on the typewriter keyboard and to the words as they appear on the page. Alice is determinedly focused on her work as she swipes a stray hair from her face.
The camera shot jumps quickly from Alice, to the keyboard, to Alice hitting the return lever, to a shelf full of Jack Cannon, Boy Detective novels, to another book cover poster on the wall (Jack Cannon, Boy Detective, the Girl From Columbia), to the keyboard, to Alice, to a third book cover poster (Jack Cannon, Boy Detective, The Map of Tomorrow), to the keyboard, to Alice, who is typing almost frantically now as she again hits the return lever. The camera pulls back on Alice as she hits the return lever one last time and types “THE END” onto the page.
Alice sighs, collapses back onto the chair, flexes her fingers and rubs her hands together as if to massage out cramps and pain]
Jack: (off camera) They have a cure for that, you know? (cut to a blue yo-yo rolling on the floor) It's called a computer.
[The scene shifts up to Jack. He is sitting in an antique lounge chair, reading a book and playing with the yo-yo. We see only his body. His head is blocked by an outside corner of the larger, adjoining room]
Jack: We done for the day, or do I need to find something else to read?
Alice: I'm done.
[Jack turns to look at her and we see his face for the first time. He is a teenage boy with a scar on his left cheek. The book he is reading has a photo of Alice on the back cover]
Alice: It’s done.
[Jack closes the book and approaches Alice at her desk. Alice’s desk is in an alcove, which opens up into a library with walls lined with bookshelves. The library, in turn, opens into the larger main living room area where Jack was sitting. The house is furnished with antiques. It is elegant and airy. The bay window behind Alice’s desk provides plenty of natural light]
Jack: No way. It's finished? Well, how–how's it end? I mean, you got to let me read it.
Alice: Not this time. (She pulls the last page out of the typewriter and adds it to the stack of manuscript pages)
Jack: W–you at least got to tell me what happens. (Alice shakes her head no) Come on. How am I supposed to help with the next book if you don't—
Alice: (Carrying the manuscript across the room) There isn't going to be a next book.
[Alice opens a large black safe and places the manuscript inside]
Jack: You can't be serious. Why?
Alice: You wouldn't understand.
Jack: Try me.
[Alice stops in front of Jack and strokes the scar on his cheek with her hand]
Alice: (quietly) I just can't do it anymore. I'm not brave like you. (She leaves him and goes back to her desk)
Jack: But writing's your whole life. What are you gonna do without it?
Alice: (she opens a desk drawer) What I should have done years ago.
[Alice takes a small revolver out of her desk drawer, cocks it, and holds it front of her with both hands. It is pointed toward the ceiling. Her hands are shaking]
Jack: What are you doing? Put it down, or I'll–I'll make you.
Alice: (her voice trembles) How, Jack? You don't even exist. I'm sorry.
[Alice puts the gun in her mouth, but just as she is about to pull the trigger, she has a seizure. The gun goes off next to her face and she collapses to the floor. Her maid, hearing the gun shot, comes rushing into the room]
Christina: (looking around the room) Miss Tanner. Miss Tanner. (seeing Alice on the floor behind the desk) Oh, dear God.
[Alice is still seizing. Christina kneels on the floor and places her boss’s head on her lap]
[Scene opens on House walking down a hospital corridor. He stops at a patient room and enters. The patient is in a coma, but her room is full of flowers and other gifts. House picks up a box of chocolates, reads the label, then opens it and takes out a piece. Finding the chocolate distasteful, he spits it into a bowl on the patient table.
He then closes the chocolate box and goes over to the nightstand where he finds some small stuffed animals. The door opens behind him and Wilson steps in]
House: (Holding up two stuffed animals) Which of these says "I want to sleep with you" more? Penguin or beaver? Beaver, beaver, beaver. You're right, it's too high school.
Wilson: What did you do to piss Cuddy off?
House: (putting the animals back) I can't be romantic?
Wilson: House, you're stealing from a woman in a coma.
[House picks up a bouquet of pink Peonies from the nightstand and, apparently satisfied with his choice, grabs his cane and heads for the door]
House: We're fine. Never seen her happier.
Wilson: Yeah? How about you?
House: I'm... worried.
Wilson: Because she's happy?
House: (walking past Wilson and out the door) No, because I am.
Wilson: House, that's—
House: (turning to face Wilson) Ironic? Weird? Crazy?
Wilson: (He follows House as he walks down the hall) I was going to say normal.
House: For now. We're in the honeymoon period. Our brains are flooded with endorphins. Once she snaps out of it, where does that leave us?
Wilson: In an adult relationship.
House: Name one thing that Cuddy and I have in common besides work.
Wilson: There's... You're both... Wait.
House: Exactly. Long-term relationships are based on compatibility, and right now we only have sex.
Wilson: House, you don't actually think she'd dump you because you, what, don't do yoga? Listen to the B-52s?
House: Not right away. We'll fight, makeup sex, fight, maybe sex, and then she'll dump me. With possible goodbye sex.
Wilson: So, instead of enjoying the honeymoon phase, you've decided to skip it entirely.
House: I need to find something that we both like doing besides each other.
Wilson: Right. Or you could just talk to her about it.
House: No, then she'll start pretending to like things that she really doesn't just to make me feel better, which will make her feel even worse, which won't be my fault, so I'll resent her, and that won't be her fault, so she'll resent me. (stopping at an elevator, House pushes the call button) At least with my plan I get my one a day with iron till the bitter end. (The elevator door opens and House steps in, with Wilson right behind him) Is there a reason why you're following me?
Wilson: Oh, yeah. You're not gonna believe who just checked into the E.R.
[Cut to an E.R. cubicle. Alice Tanner is lying on the bed and buttoning up her shirt as House approaches and overhears the nurse and Alice talking]
Nurse: The doctor hasn't examined you yet.
Alice: There's nothing wrong with me. My maid just overreacted.
House: Great. (He pushes aside the curtain with his cane) This won't take long then.
[House hands the flowers to the nurse and props his cane up against the bottom of the bed]
Nurse: EMTs found her unconscious. Her maid said she had a seizure.
Alice: I fainted.
[House uses his hands to examine Alice’s neck]
House: Huge Jack Cannon fan, by the way. Love your books.
Alice: Really? My fans tend to be overly-annoying teenaged girls.
House: (pulling a lightscope out of his breast pocket) I know. All they care about is who's hotter, Jack or Deacon. Like Sarah can't love both of them. I may belong to one or two online fan clubs. (He looks into her eyes with the lightscope) How's the new book coming along?
Alice: I don't talk about my work.
House: 'Kay. How about nodding your head to a few yes/no questions?
[House feels for Alice’s pulse, then picks up the nurse’s wrist with his other hand]
Alice: (shaking her head no) But I'll make you a deal. You finish this exam quickly, and I'll answer one question.
House: About anything?
Alice: Anything. Who was Jack's real father, who kidnapped his Uncle...
House: (dropping both their hands) Deal. I will have to go with, why'd you try to kill yourself? Burn on the side of your face is caused by gunpowder, so, change your mind at the last second, or you just a lousy shot?
Alice: I'm out of here.
[Alice gets off the bed and picks up her purse and coat]
House: Can't. We had a deal.
Alice: Try and stop me.
[She starts to leave the ER]
House: Okay. (loudly to the whole room) This woman is on a 72-hour psychiatric hold. If she tries to run, shoot her. With a sedative, if that's more convenient.
[Alice stops to look back and him as House takes his bouquet of flowers from the nurse and leaves]
[Cut to another floral bouquet, sitting on the main desk at PPTH this time. House pulls out a single flower from the red bouquet. Taub is with him and Chase is approaching from the hospital entrance. House continues to pull flowers from the bouquet on the desk and add them to the pink bouquet]
Taub: You called us back to work because a lady might have had a seizure.
House: A seizure while trying to commit suicide.
Foreman: (who has arrived from inside the hospital) So send her for a psych eval. What's that got to do with us?
House: What is the matter with you people? We're talking about a human being who's suffering.
[Chase puts down the file he has been reading, and all three of them stare at House, waiting for an explanation of why House cares]
House: You're right. That's not enough. She is also the writer of Jack Cannon: Boy Detective, beloved by millions around the world.
[House pulls yet another red flower from the bouquet on the desk and adds it to his pink bouquet]
Chase: By girls between 10 and 14.
House: Look, the point is if she kills herself, millions of fans of all ages and genders will be very disappointed.
Foreman: So we're taking this case 'cause you're a fan?
House: No, that would be crazy and unprofessional. You're taking this case 'cause I said so. You and Taub do a full workup. Observe her overnight. See if she has another seizure. (looking at Chase) You can go.
Taub: Why does he get the night off?
House: Because he brought a “smokin'” hot babe.
[They all turn to look at a pretty blond woman who is smoking a cigarette just outside the hospital doors. Chase waves to the woman, who waves back]
Taub: I have plans with my wife.
House: Yeah, nice try, but you hate your personal life. (to Foreman before he can protest) And you obviously don't have one.
[Chase gives House a thumb’s up and starts to leave]
House: Hey. (He pulls a red flower out of his bouquet and hands it to Chase who takes it and turns to join the young woman) I'd stay myself, but I just bought the flowers. (House leaves Taub and Foreman to observe Alice overnight)
[Cut to House and Cuddy walking up the drive of a very large, older, stone home]
House: Reservation for Dominica's isn't till 8:00, so we got plenty of time.
Cuddy: We need to pick something up from a haunted house?
House: This is a Gothic Revival masterpiece. I hope one day to live in a house like this.
[Cut to the inside of, what we now realize is, Alice’s home. House flips on the lights in the library]
Cuddy: Your friend's a writer?
House: One of the best. She wants me to read her latest manuscript.
Cuddy: (browsing the bookshelves) Alice Tanner. Why does that name sound familiar?
House: I gave you a couple of her books a few years ago.
[House has wandered up to the desk and starts looking through a stack of mail]
Cuddy: (approaching House) No. She's the woman you put on the psych hold. This isn't a date. We're on a case.
House: Ever hear of multitasking?
Cuddy: Did you steal her keys?
House: Think I'd take the Dean of Medicine on a “B” and “E”
[Alice’s maid appears, brandishing a baseball bat]
Christina: How did you get in here?
House: (to Cuddy) Well, I guess you have your answer.
[Cut to Alice’s hospital room at PPTH. Foreman has just finished listening to Alice’s heart]
Foreman: When was your last physical?
Alice: A while ago. I don't like doctors.
Taub: Any history of seizures before today?
Alice: Not that I recall. Are we almost done? I'm tired.
Foreman: The exam would go faster if you would cooperate with us.
Alice: I am.
Taub: You're evading every question we ask.
Alice: Why do you say that?
Alice: I didn't ask for help.
Taub: Committing a suicidal gesture says otherwise.
Alice: It wasn't a gesture. I had the damn seizure before I could get the gun in my mouth.
Foreman: You want to tell us why?
Alice: You want to know my life story, my secret, inner pain? Maybe if I just open up a little, you'll be able to save me?
Taub: We're just trying to help you.
Alice: Thank you. I want a woman doctor.
Taub: And back to being evasive.
Alice: It's my right as a patient. So please. Get out. Now.
Foreman: We need to observe you overnight.
Alice: You really think I'm stupid enough to try and kill myself in a hospital?
Foreman: To see if you have another seizure. (pointing to the observation room) We'll be up there, and we won't disturb you unless there's a problem. That work for you?
Alice: Whatever it takes to get you out of here.
[Cut to Alice’s home. House is snooping in Alice’s desk drawers. Cuddy has been talking with Christina]
Cuddy: House, Christina has agreed to not call the police.
House: She's probably illegal. Same reason she didn't report the suicide attempt.
Christina: I call 911. But when Miss Tanner woke up, she say she will fire me if I say anything about the gun.
House: And if she whacks herself, what happens to your job?
Christina: I think she's a very depressed person. Never goes out, doesn't have friends. She has all this money, but all she does is write.
House: I need to see her latest manuscript.
Christina: (pointing to the safe) She always locks up her writing in there.
Cuddy: Has she ever complained about physical pain or stress?
[House goes to look at the safe and finds himself thwarted by the lock]
Christina: Yes. Her back and her hands hurt a lot.
House: A writer with back and hand pain. That's very helpful. Let's go.
Christina: Sometimes I hear her cry at night. When she thinks nobody's listening. I should have done something.
[The typewriter is brought into focus as Christina talks and House has an “aha” moment. He limps back to the desk
House: (lifting up the top of the typewriter) True.
Cuddy: (to House) What are you doing?
[House sits down behind Alice’s desk and starts taking the ribbon out of the typewriter]
House: Before there were hard drives, there were... (he holds up the ribbon reels)
[Looking down, he notices something in the wastebasket. He picks it up and takes out an empty tuna can]
House: How many of these does she eat a day?
Christina: Two for lunch. Sometimes three.
[Cut to the PPTH observation room in Alice’s room. Foreman is awake and watching Alice. Taub is asleep in a chair]
Foreman: Still no seizure activity. It's your turn—
[There is a rap on the observation room window, waking Taub. House has entered the hospital room and used his cane to get their attention]
Taub: What the hell?
Foreman: Close. House. (pushing the intercom button and talking to House) She's fine. Both the E.E.G. and all her vitals have been—
[House spins Alice’s bed around so that her left side is now facing the observation window. He pulls back the covers on Alice’s bed, revealing that her entire left side is wet. She has been sweating, but only on one side. Alice wakes up]
Alice: You. What do you want?
House: You wet the bed. Just not sure how yet.
[Cut to the PPTH diagnostics conference room. Taub and Foreman are blurry eyed as a cheery Chase enters the room]
Chase: Good morning, gentlemen. (looking at their tired faces) Well, if it's any consolation, I didn't get any sleep either. (opening and reading Alice’s chart) Unilateral hyperhidrosis. Interesting.
Taub: She also admitted she tried to kill herself, but won't tell us why.
Foreman: House searched her home, found she's been eating two cans of tuna a day for years.
Chase: Mercury poisoning?
House: (just entering the room) Explains the seizures, hand and back pain, also the depression.
Foreman: Explains everything except the fact that it's not. We got her urine and blood samples back. They're normal.
Chase: If it's low level, it might not show up in a spot check. We need to run continuous testing to find it.
[House tosses his backpack onto the chair in his office]
Taub: We can't. She wants a female doctor.
Foreman: She only asked for a woman to waste time. She's cooperating just enough to get through the psych hold.
House: Put some lipstick on Chase and start chelation therapy. Confirm with another urine test. (The team stares uncertainly at House) Okay. I'll go talk to Cuddy. Maybe she'll let us borrow a dress too. (House leaves the conference room)
[Cut to House entering Cuddy’s office. She is sitting at her desk, but she pointedly ignores him]
Cuddy: This would be me ignoring you. (finally looking up) What if we got arrested last night? And whatever happened to keeping our professional and personal lives separate?
House: I'm not the one talking about our relationship at work.
Cuddy: What's behind your back?
[House pulls out the small stuffed penguin and hands it to her]
House: Peace penguin.
Cuddy: What room should I return it to?
House: 243. I need some help with Alice Tanner. She wants a vagina.
Cuddy: I'm pretty attached to mine. I told you to hire a temporary replacement for Thirteen two weeks ago.
House: I've been busy.
Cuddy: Doing what?
House: You. So you'll talk her out of it?
Cuddy: You'll hire a woman doctor?
House: You think we just sit around talking sports and belching and farting when the chicks aren't around? (he burps) By when?
Cuddy: Next week.
House: Next week it is. (He leaves)
[Cut to Alice’s room where Cuddy is now talking to her. Christina is sitting beside the bed]
Alice: What makes you think it's Mercury?
Cuddy: Your symptoms. Now I can perform the procedure myself if you still prefer a woman doctor, but the team you have is our best.
Alice: That's an interesting perfume you're wearing.
Cuddy: It was a gift.
Alice: From Dr. House? It was all over him last night.
Cuddy: If you'd prefer another female doctor, I can arrange that as well.
Alice: I also smelled it somewhere else more recently. Faint, but unmistakable. You should have worn a different cardigan this morning, Christina. Something you'd like to tell me, dear?
Christina: When I found you yesterday, I thought I was too late. I talked to them so I could help you get better. I just don't want to see you suffer anymore.
Alice: That won't be a problem. You're fired.
Cuddy: This woman cares about you. If it weren't for her—
Alice: I wouldn't be here now, would I? I should have done it yesterday.
Cuddy: I understand that you're in pain, but lashing out isn't the answer. Treatment is.
Alice: I agree. Send the men back. At least they're not a bunch of dewy-eyed cry-babies.
[Cut to House’s office. House is sitting behind his desk, and is wearing a bright headlamp as he examines the typewriter ribbon through a magnifying glass. Wilson peers over his shoulder]
Wilson: What's that?
House: It's the new Jack Cannon novel. Suggestions?
Wilson: Yeah. Stop. It can't be done.
House: People wonder why you've never cured cancer.
Wilson: Did you get this before or after your date with Cuddy?
House: Eh, probably would have been a wiser choice.
Wilson: Huh. This is actually good, House. (He walks around to the front of the desk) She's committing crimes. What does that tell you?
House: I'm a horrible influence.
Wilson: True. A horrible influence she's reaching out to. She's looking for ways to connect. Sure, they're self-destructive, juvenile, and insane, (sitting down) but so are you. You do have something in common. You're both trying to find things you have in common.
House: And not finding them. (Wilson sighs)
[Cut to Alice’s hospital room]
Jack: (playing with his yoyo) You don't look so hot. Want to talk about it?
Alice: Those days are over.
[As Taub and Chase approach Alice’s room to perform the chelation therapy, they see Alice talking to herself. They enter the room]
Chase: Who were you talking to?
Taub: If you're seeing things, it could be another symptom.
Alice: It's not. It's only in my imagination. I make things up for a living.
[Chase picks up Alice’s chart and walks to the side of her bed]
Chase: And talking to them?
Alice: It's a writer thing. We're also good at reading people. Like you, for instance. Recently divorced. You slept with a girl last night. Her place, not yours. You probably won't return her calls.
Chase: (clearly impressed) That... How?
Alice: The tan line from your former wedding ring. You stink of smoke, but no yellow on your fingers or teeth means she's the smoker. And you either didn't shower or change. Either way, her place.
Chase: (pointing to Taub) Do him.
Taub: We're wasting time, which is her main goal here. (to Alice) Need your arm for this.
Alice: You remind me of my ex-husband. A cute man, but problems in the bedroom department.
Taub: Not even close.
Alice: The ones I caught him in. He cheated on me every chance he could. The first time with my best friend. The second... The bastard.
[Alice suddenly grabs her head and slides down on the bed, groaning and in pain]
Taub: BP and heart rate are spiking.
Chase: Must be an allergic reaction to the chelation agent.
Taub: I didn't give it to her yet.
[Cut to the diagnostics conference room. The team is eating lunch. There are Chinese food containers and drink cups on the table. House (wearing his glasses and latex gloves) has placed the typewriter ribbon between two layers of paper, and is rubbing the top layer with a pencil, trying to create an image of the text]
Chase: Pain, seizures, hyperhidrosis, and sudden onset of radically high blood pressure.
Foreman: Her continuous blood and urine test came back. It's definitely not Mercury poisoning. Clean.
Chase: Could be hemolytic uremic syndrome.
[House pulls the paper away from the ribbon and holds it up to the light, trying to read the impression he just made]
Foreman: It's not. There weren't any blood or protein markers in her urine, either.
Taub: We also caught her talking to herself. She could be delusional.
[House has put the paper aside and is now examining the ribbon itself. He appears to be completely disengaged]
Foreman: She's a writer and a recluse. I'd be more surprised if she didn't
talk to herself. (to House) You done playing with your ribbon?
House: What was she doing when it happened?
Chase: Sitting in bed. She claims it was only in her imagination, but still.
House: When her BP spiked?
Chase: Comparing Taub to her ex-husband. She really hated the guy.
[House puts the ribbon reels in a pan on the table and takes off his glasses]
House: Her first symptom was when she had a gun to her head. (peeling off the gloves) Excess adrenaline could explain seizures and skyrocketing BP.
Taub: A pheochromocytoma.
House: Get an MRI and find it.
[House takes the pan to the conference room desk and throws the gloves is the wastebasket. He looks back at the team, noticing that they have not moved. They are all still eating. He picks up the wastebasket and walking back to the conference table, hands it to Chase]
House: Would you hold this?
[Chase takes the wastebasket as House goes to the other end of the table and, using his cane, swipes all the food containers into the wastebasket]
House: I meant now.
[Cut to Taub and Chase wheeling Alice into the radiology lab. Foreman is in the control room]
Alice: Have I mentioned I'm claustrophobic?
Taub: Have I mentioned we don't care?
Chase: What's wrong?
Alice: Nothing. Just a leg cramp.
[Alice grabs her leg and starts screaming in pain. Foreman comes running into the room]
Foreman: Get her out of here. She's got metal in her leg.
[The magnetic MRI rips the screws out of her leg causing burns and tissue damage]
[Cut to the radiology viewing room where House and the team are viewing an Xray of Alice’s leg]
Foreman: She has three screws in her right leg from a skiing accident she didn't tell us about. The MRI's magnetic field super heated the metal, causing third-degree burns. Skin ruptured from internal heat pressure here. (He circles the ruptures on the Xray film)
Taub: It's not our fault. She signed the consent forms, denied there was any metal...
[House takes the marker from Foreman and steps behind Taub, writing on the back of his lab coat]
House: Normally I'd say it. Maybe this way it'll finally sink in.
[He turns Taub around so that his back faces Foreman and Chase. He has written “Everybody Lies” on the back of his coat]
House: She wants to die. You cannot trust anything she says.
[Taub is pulling at his coat, looking over his shoulder and trying to see what House wrote on it]
Foreman: Treating the soft tissue injuries in her leg cost us most of the day. We also had to replace the screws.
Chase: And finding a pheochromocytoma without using the MRI could take us a week.
Taub: Longer, if she doesn't stop lying to us. Or we could figure out a way to find it in the 39 hours left on her psych hold.
House: We need to make her cooperate. We have to offer her something she wants.
Foreman: She wants to kill herself House.
House: I can work with that.
[House grabs his cane and walks out. Taub is still trying to read the back of his coat]
[Cut to House entering Alice’s hospital room]
House: I want you to write more books.
Alice: I'm done writing Jack Cannon's adventures. And when I get out of here, I'll just be done.
House: Now don't you say that, you dirty birdie. (He places his cane on top of a cabinet) You know, there are easier ways to go than shooting yourself in the head or tearing apart a limb. (He pulls a drug bottle and syringe out of his coat pocket) And this is one of them. The best part, you'll feel so good, you won't even notice you're dead.
Alice: You expect me to believe you're going to help me kill myself?
House: (filling the syringe from the bottle) You're the perceptive one. You tell me.
House: We can't find your tumor in time without your cooperation. So I'm giving you a choice. Give us a chance to make you better, or stick this anywhere and push. (House holds up the full syringe)
Alice: Why do you care about me? You think you know me because you read my books?
House: No. I know pain. You think you can handle it, and one day you can't. When that happens, you either find reasons to go on, or you don't.
Alice: I'm... I'm all out of reasons.
House: Now. When you're pain free, you're gonna want to live and start writing again. And if I'm wrong, got a backup plan to take home with you.
Alice: (taking the syringe) Okay.
House: Good choice. If I were you, I'd hide that if you want to keep it.
[He turns and takes his cane off the cabinet]
Alice: I know the perfect place.
[House turns around just in time to see Alice jam the needle into her thigh and push in the plunger]
[Cut to House sitting beside Alice’s bed. The sheet has been pulled up to cover her face. She wakes and pushes the sheet down]
House: Morning, sunshine.
Alice: You're a real bastard.
House: You were supposed to choose life.
Alice: You're also an excellent liar.
House: Wasn't lying about the cure. If we find and remove that pesky, adrenaline-secreting tumor, you'll get better.
Alice: You better hurry. My lawyer will have me out of here this time tomorrow.
House: Yeah, about that, it seems that last night you found and self-administered what you thought was a potentially lethal narcotic. Your psych hold has been extended an additional 24 hours. I know. Bummer, right?
[House starts to leave, but Alice stops him]
Alice: You want to know something about my book?
Alice: Jack Cannon dies. (House looks stunned) I know. Bummer, right?
[Cut to the radiology viewing room. Apparently, after she injected herself with the sedative House gave her, the team performed a PET scan, looking for the tumor. House and the team are looking at the test results]
Taub: We finished analyzing the PET scans from last night. There's no sign of a tumor.
Foreman: We sampled blood from six different areas looking for any spikes in adrenaline. All of them were negative.
Taub: If she told us her symptoms, where it hurts, when the pain first started, we could at least focus on a specific area.
Chase: Or use them to rule areas out.
Foreman: She'll only lie. We're better off not even talking to her.
Chase: You think you can get her to try to kill herself again? We're gonna need more time.
House: There might be a way to get her symptoms without asking her. If writers write what they know.
Foreman: I thought you said it was about a boy Detective.
House: And his mentor, Aunt Helen, who happens to be around the same age as Alice. Answers could be in the book.
Taub: Great. You finish reading your typewriter ribbon yet?
House: Look for the tumor with the ultrasound.
[Cut to radiology, where House is laying out sections of the typewriter ribbon onto the MRI table. Sam is watching him]
Sam: I drove across town to treat a ribbon?
House: That's why I prefer lying. It makes things easier.
Wilson: (entering the room) Whatever he has you doing, stop.
House: (to Sam) You told him?
Sam: We do live together. I generally tell him when I show up at his work.
[Sam and Wilson kiss]
Sam: He told me it was a matter of life and death.
House: It is. Patient wants to kill herself.
Wilson: He's just trying to read a book, the latest Jack Cannon: Boy Detective.
Sam: Alice Tanner is your patient?
House: (excitedly) You're a "fannon" too?
Sam: (also excited) I'm team Deacon.
House: Oh, come on. Why can't she love them both?
Sam: The typewriter keys should have left impressions on these ribbon fibers. They would also remove a layer of ink. It's just a question of tweaking the software, really.
[Sam goes into the control room and House pushes the button to move the table into the MRI machine]
Wilson: Does Cuddy know you're using the MRI for this?
House: Let's say yes.
[House grabs a notebook and both he and Wilson join Sam in the control room]
Sam: (to House) So do you think Jack finally hooks up with Sarah in this one?
House: No. Debbie Wright is his true love.
Sam: She's dead.
House: Presumed! All we really know is—
Wilson: There are actual patients waiting to use this machine.
[There is a beep and the words from the ribbon begin to appear on the monitor]
Sam: Congratulations. It's a book.
[Cut to House’s office. He is sitting by the balcony doors, using the sunlight to read the printed pages of the book. Other pages are spread out on the floor and on top of the TV. Cuddy enters and looking at the paper on the floor, steps around them until she reaches House]
Cuddy: Wilson just told me we're going on a double date with him and Sam tonight.
House: You don't like double dates?
Cuddy: I'd just like if you'd ask me first.
House: You don't like surprises?
Cuddy: Is this Alice's book?
House: Sam reprogrammed the MRI to read Alice's typewriter ribbon.
Cuddy: You used a 3 million dollar piece of hospital equipment so you could read a novel?
House: Cool, right?
[House pushes his office chair over to his desk and begins to write something on the pages he was reading]
Cuddy: Well, as your girlfriend, I'm impressed. As your boss, you're a jackass. Don't do it again.
House: As your boyfriend, I thank you. As your employee, I resent you, because I need this for my case.
Cuddy: As your boss, you just got six more clinic hours next week. (House glares at her) So, what's the plan for tonight?
House: Whatever you want.
Cuddy: I don't care. Just pick something we'd both enjoy.
House: Yeah? And what would that be exactly?
Cuddy: I don't know. You know what I like. I got to get back to work.
[Cut to Chase and Foreman performing the ultrasound]
Chase: Found something. It's not a tumor. Whatever it is, it's encased around her heart.
[Cut to House’s office. He is wearing his glasses and completely focused on reading Alice’s book]
Chase: She has a pericardial effusion.
Taub: Which wasn't there last night when we did the PET scan.
Foreman: She's getting worse, and there's no sign of a pheochromocytoma. Seizures, sweating, rapid blood pressure, and an effusion point to something viral.
Chase: Or maybe a cancer.
[House appears to be unaware of their presence]
Foreman: We could use your opinion, House, or at least your attention.
House: (taking off his glasses and looking up at them) Jack Cannon is not dead. It's worse. Ten books leading up to a final confrontation. She ends it on a cliffhanger. Who does that?
Taub: People who want to sell you the 11th.
[House picks up his cane, rises from the chair and starts ranting about the book]
House: She was gonna kill herself. This is the final Jack Cannon. Nothing gets resolved. Who's his father? Who killed his brother? How'd he get that damn scar on his cheek, and why is he obsessed with yo-yos?
Chase: Is there anything in it that pertains to our case?
House: Yeah. I know why she wanted to kill herself.
[House turns the whiteboard around to face them and, picking up the marker, starts writing down symptoms]
House: His mentor, Helen Rutherford, has contracted a serious illness, which consists of joint pain, fatigue, sensitivity to light, and depression.
Foreman: How do we know this mentor character's really Alice?
House: Helen dies halfway through the book. Shoots herself in the head... to save Jack from having to care for her.
Taub: If we add those to the symptoms we've seen and the pericardial effusion... it's lupus.
House: Can't be lupus.
Chase: Why not?
House: It isn't curable.
Foreman: That's... not an answer. It's treatable. We'll start testing to see which drugs she best responds to.
House: We're not gonna be able to take her pain away. She's still gonna kill herself as soon as she gets released tomorrow. I can't let Jack Cannon end this way.
Chase: We're treating a patient... not a book.
House: Retest to confirm. (He leaves his office)
[Cut to an indoor go-cart track. House and Cuddy stand watching the go-carts race around the track]
Cuddy: (looking at House with disbelief) Go-carts? Really?
Heard over the Intercom: Wilson, party of four. You guys are up next.
House: Your mom said you loved go-carts.
Cuddy: You called my mother. I loved them when I was 12.
Sam: (holding up a green helmet and calling to them from the go-cart parking area) This is so cool! I haven't done this since I was 12! Winner picks the restaurant.
Wilson: I have a very bad feeling about this.
[Cut to the double daters, helmeted, buckled in and ready to race. Sam and Wilson are in the front, Cuddy and House behind them]
Fun Stop Attendant: (walking between them onto the track) Are we ready, racers? (He stops and turns to face them, raising the starting flags) On your marks, get set... (He lowers the flags) And go away.
[Sam is very aggressive and bumps into Wilson before they barely get started]
Wilson: (to Sam) Hey! Watch it!
House: (looking over at Cuddy) You having fun?
Cuddy: (grinning back at him) You know who wins these races? The person who weighs less!
Wilson: My parents never let me drive one of these!
Sam: Yeah! I can tell!
[Sam rams into Wilson again]
Wilson: Oh, my God! Oh!
[Sam rams Wilson yet again]
[Wilson loses control and crashes into the side barrier, going off the track]
Cuddy: What is her problem?
House: She hates Jews!
Cuddy: Never... again.
[Cuddy pulls ahead of House and tries to overtake Sam. Sam bumps into Cuddy, who bumps her back. They continue bumping each other until Cuddy gets the upper hand and pulls ahead of Sam]
House: That a girl!
Sam: (frustrated that Cuddy is now out front) Ohh... uh...
[Sam hits Cuddy hard on a curve and she swerves to a stop as Sam and House continue on around the track]
Cuddy: (rubbing her shoulder where the seat belt has cut into it). Ooh. Ahhh.
[House laughs evilly as he tries to overtake Sam]
House: Hoo hoo hah hah hah!
[House catches up with Sam and they go back and forth for a bit, taking turns with the lead, but Sam finally manages to get, and keep, the lead]
Sam: See you at the finish line!
House: Oh, yeah?
[House pulls his deaths-head cane from the side of the go-cart, kisses it, then uses it to reach over and pull the electrical plug on the back of Sam’s go-cart. Without power, her go-cart slows to a crawl]
[House continues on around the track and raises his arms in triumph as he crosses the finish line alone]
[Cut to House putting his helmet on the parked go-cart and picking up his cane]
Fun Stop Attendant: (yelling at them as they leave) Hey! You're banned for life, mister! Your Fun Stop privileges are officially revoked! You, too, blondie! All of you — get out!
House: I avenged my Lady.
Cuddy: (rubbing her shoulder) Seatbelt nearly broke my neck. I'm done for the night.
House: It's not my fault Wilson's attracted to psychos.
Cuddy: You picked the place.
[House stops as Cuddy goes on ahead]
Wilson: That's just the pain talking.
House: (having the “ah-ha” moment about Alice) Oh... wow.
[Cut to Alice’s hospital room. She is asleep, but House wakes her up by poking her with the head of his cane]
House: It was a car crash. Not a skiing accident.
Alice: (still half asleep) What?
House: Screws in your leg.
Alice: You got me. I'll be going back to sleep now.
House: You damaged your thyroid gland in the crash when the shoulder strap cut into your neck. You don't have lupus. What you have is curable.
Alice: Go away.
House: I read your book. Sucks, by the way.
Alice: Nice try, but impossible.
[House puts down his cane and picking up the Jack Cannon manuscript, sits down on the side of Alice’s bed and starts reading it to Alice]
House: Helen Rutherford kills herself because she feels useless and doesn't want to be a burden.
[Alice sits up, grabs the stack of papers from his hands and starts reading them]
House: Just like you do now. You have hypothyroidism. That's why you feel so tired and worn out. With medication, you'll feel 20 years younger. Or whatever age you were the last time you didn't want to kill yourself.
Alice: (shaking the manuscript pages) How did you—
House: You can finish the story the right way... The way Jack Cannon deserves.
Alice: You think you know what Jack deserves?
House: I know that he deserves better than what you gave him.
[Alice, angry now, grabs the front of House’s jacket in both hands and starts to shake him]
Alice: You don't know anything about him! Why can't you just leave me—
[She stops, lets go of his jacket, and falls down sideways onto the bed. House picks her up and straightens her out on the bed]
Alice: What did you do to me? I can't move. I can't move anything.
[Cut to House and the team gathered in the hallway outside Alice’s room]
House: How can I be right and wrong? I deduced the car accident because thyroid fit the symptoms. But a damaged thyroid wouldn't explain the paralysis. How can I be wrong about the thyroid but right about the accident?
Taub: What if you're not?
House: I like the way you think kid.
Taub: At least not completely. Post traumatic syringomyelia from a 15-year-old car crash. Slowly growing over the years, pressing against her spinal column. Causes pain, fluctuating blood pressure, seizures.
Foreman: And if untreated, eventually leads to paralysis and death.
Taub: We find it and remove it. She should be able to regain full function.
Chase: If we can get her medical records from back then, we can use them to pinpoint the location.
House: Do it.
Taub: We're dead on our feet. I've barely slept in four days.
House: Aw... that's sad. You know what's even sadder? Thirteen was the only man on my team.
Foreman: Yeah, it'd be nice if you hurry up and hire someone to fill her spot.
House: (to Foreman) Do it. Cuddy wants it to be a girl.
Foreman: There are a couple of people—
House: I was talking to Chase. I was just looking at you to screw with you.
[Cut to House asleep in the Eames chair in his office. Foreman, Taub, and Chase have just entered. Foreman clears his throat to wake up House]
House: I'm meditating.
Foreman: From where we're standing, it looked like sleeping.
Chase: We can't find her old medical records.
House: You woke me up for that?
Foreman: We woke you up because it doesn't matter. Alice is refusing any more treatment. She doesn't want the surgery.
Taub: She kicked us out.
House: Why would she lie about the accident?
Taub: Everybody lies.
House: Everybody has a reason. (He picks up his cane and leaves the office)
[Cut to House entering Cuddy’s office. Cuddy is sitting in one of the lounge chairs looking through a stack of papers. House perches on the arm of the chair across from her]
Cuddy: I know. Alice is refusing surgery.
House: She'll be dead in a few days without it.
Cuddy: Which is why I've spent the last four hours trying to find a legal way to do it without her permission. Unsuccessfully. I'm sorry.
House: As your boyfriend, I'm grateful for the effort. As your employee, I'm disappointed at your ineffectiveness.
[House plops down into the chair so that he is sitting it in sideways, with his legs draped over the arm of the chair]
House: (sighing) Why would she not tell us about the pins in her leg?
Cuddy: 'Cause she wants to die.
House: By having her leg ripped off? She wants to punish herself... for something that happened before she was famous, before she even started to write. I think the answer's in her old medical records. But dopey, sleazy, and uptighty can't find them.
Cuddy: Maybe Alice Tanner's just her pen name.
House: Your boyfriend is an idiot.
Cuddy: (getting up and picking up the phone on her desk) I'll contact the National Records Archive and run the type of screws in her leg against blood type, age, and anything else I think of.
House: Her first name could be Helen.
Cuddy: Even better.
[Cut to House entering Alice’s room. He is carrying a thick medical file]
House: Don't bother to get up. You know, the way you write Jack always made him feel real to me. (putting the file down on the foot of the bed) Now I know why.
Alice: Because I'm a good writer.
House: He's cool, but he's awkward. He's brilliant. He makes mistakes. (propping his cane against the bed) He's funny, but sometimes he takes it too far. Sounds like a great kid.
Alice: Please. Just leave me alone.
House: You weren't alone in the car crash. Your son was with you, Helen.
[He takes a photo out of the file and turns it around to show Alice/Helen. It is an autopsy photo of Jack after the accident. In the photo, he has a cut on his left cheek]
House: The books are your way of keeping him alive.
Alice: (very upset) Why can't you just let me die in peace?
House: You haven't been at peace since it happened.
Alice: I killed him.
[The apparition of Jack is now standing at the foot of the bed]
House: No, you didn't.
Alice: I let him drive. He only had a learner's permit. It was raining. I deserve this.
House: No, you don't.
Alice: (looking at Jack) He could always get me to do what he wanted. He's always been my muse.
House: (taking something else out of the file) Well, that may be true, but I've been reviewing your muse's autopsy results. It wasn't the crash that killed him. Your son had a brain aneurism. That's why he crashed. He was dead before the impact. There was nothing you could do to save him.
Alice: They would have told me.
House: They had no reason to dig any deeper. It was a car accident. I did. (holding up a skull Xray) It's easy to miss. (pointing) But you can see the blood buildup here. Your son would have died that day, on a bus, in school, sitting on his bed. The only thing the crash is killing is you. We need to repair that syrinx in your neck.
Alice: He was my world. Writing... I could feel him with me.
Jack: (putting his hand on his mother’s hand) It wasn't my fault, mom.
Alice: (looking at Jack) And it wasn't mine.
[As the camera shot widens, it is revealed that Jack is gone]
[Cut to House in the observation room above the OR where Alice is having the surgery. Cuddy joins him]
Cuddy: Her son didn't have a brain aneurism.
House: Nope. She shouldn't have let him drive in the rain. Jack was never very coordinated.
Cuddy: As your boss, I am opposed to you lying to a patient. As your girlfriend, I'm glad you care.
House: I don't. I just wanted to save Jack Cannon.
Cuddy: Well, I can see why you like him. I started reading one of the books you gave me.
House: I find that very hard to believe.
Cuddy: Why? Because I can't like something you like? We couldn't possibly
have something in common?
House: Because I lied about giving you the books.
House: Oh. Wilson told you.
House: He's such a gossip.
Cuddy: I'm not gonna dump you because we like different food or books or music. On the other hand, I might dump you if you don't talk to me when you have a problem with our relationship.
House: I know you believe that now... But the fact is—
Cuddy: Who cares about common? Common is boring. It's... common! I like being with you. You make me better. Hopefully, I make you better. What we have is... uncommon. And I've never been happier.
[Cuddy smiles at him, trying to get him to smile. He tries, but it is only a flicker]
[Cut to Alice’s hospital room. Christina is handing her a drink in an aluminum can. The door opens and House enters]
Alice: Mind giving us a moment alone, Christina?
[Christina leaves and House pulls up a stool and sits]
Alice: I'd like to thank you.
House: Great. You can dedicate the next Jack Cannon to me.
Alice: I can't.
House: Are you still in pain?
Alice: No. You did everything you said, and more. I can finally move on. Thank you.
House: Move on where?
Alice: I want to write books for adults.
House: What about Jack? Your last book didn't answer anything.
Alice: The way I ended Jack's story is perfect. Each reader can decide what fate they want for him themselves.
[House gets up at approaches the bed]
House: (sounding like a whiny child) You — but that's stupid! That doesn't make any sense!
Alice: How many answers do you get in real life?
House: This is a book. Books have beginnings, middles, and ends. You can't just leave it on a cliffhanger — who does that?
Alice: I'm sorry. His story's done. There's really nothing you can say to change my mind.
House: Your son... (House looks back to see Cuddy standing in the doorway, and resists the urge to be an ass) Was very lucky to have you as his mother. (Cuddy is visibly relieved)
[House turns and leaves, passing Cuddy on his way out]
Cuddy: That was—
House: Oh, shut up.