Hello again! Without further ado, here's chapter two!
As suddenly as it had began, the spinning stopped. Wilson landed with a thud on a hard, tiled floor.
He looked around, dazed. Kutner was standing up next to him with his arms crossed, staring straight ahead. "Where are we?" Wilson asked, standing shakily.
Kutner nodded solemnly in the direction he was looking. "See for yourself, Dr. Wilson."
Wilson followed his gaze, then nearly jumped backwards. There, in front of him, was a family, a mom and a dad and a boy, sitting around a table and eating dinner. The boy couldn't have been more than six or seven, but Wilson recognized him instantly.
"Is that House?" he asked Kutner incredulously. He didn't really need an answer. He recognized him.
The boy was thin and lanky, not a fat cell in his body. He had curly, dark brown hair, and bright, intelligent blue eyes. That shade of piercing blue was absolutely unmistakable. It was House, at age six.
Wilson knew the other two figures. He'd met Blithe, House's mother, several times. His father, he'd met once, but the man's face had been burned into his mind. The upright, military man was instantly recognizable as House's dad. At the moment, the two of them were chatting about how House had informed him mother, correctly, of what a star was made of, when she'd mused on it out loud. Blithe was smiling as she spoke, clearly proud of the intelligence of her child.
House, at the moment, was silent as his dad spoke to his mom. He was looking down at his plate, pushing his food around with his fork like he had no appetite.
House's father suddenly barked at him. "Why aren't you eating, boy? Your mother's food not good enough for you?"
Wilson's mouth hung open at the way House answered his father. "N-no sir. I'm sorry. I'm just not feeling… good."
House had never, not once since Wilson had met him, spoke like that. Stuttering, apologizing, his voice full of badly suppressed fear. He was clearly terrified of his father.
His father sneered in return. "Well suck it up, Gregory. Your mother worked hard on this meal and you're going to eat every last bite."
His mother looked slightly pained, but she didn't protest. House swallowed, his eyes flicking towards and away from his father. "Yes, sir."
His father went back to the conversation with his mother as he choked down the food.
Suddenly, Wilson felt a burning sensation in the back of his throat. He clawed at it, eyes watering. "Wh-what? What the hell?" he sputtered, eyes bulging. "What's wrong with my throat?"
Kutner looked at him solemnly. "You're feeling what House feels at this moment. Do you like it?"
Wilson sent an incredulous glance at the six year old House. His face was similar to Wilson's, but he was controlling it better.
"What the hell is he eating?"
Kutner shook his head. "His dad had covered it in dried pepper."
"Because it was just another aspect of his son's life he could control."
Wilson's eyes widened in shock, even as his throat burned. House ate the meal as quickly as possible, finally dousing his throat with a long gulp of milk. Wilson felt the searing pain in his mouth fade to a dull pulse.
House's dad eyed him. "Done already?"
House nodded eagerly. "Yes, sir. May I be excused?"
His dad smiled. Instead of finding this reassuring, however, the smaller version of House paled. "Sure, why not?" his dad answered, sickly sweet. "Get ready for bed, Greg. I'll be up in an hour or so to… tuck you in… after your mother is in bed."
House swallowed, then turned and ran upstairs.
Wilson turned to Kutner, anger in his eyes. "What the hell is this? Was House's father… abusive?"
Kutner looked at him flatly, his eyes dark little disks of black. "Keep watching, and you tell me."
The room spun again, and Wilson found himself an hour or so in the future, now in House's bedroom. It was a plain room, with white walls and few possessions.
The boy in question was perched on the bed, hands fidgeting in his lap, a frightened expression on his face. His eyes widened in terror when he heard the thump of a boot on the stairs.
Wilson turned to Kutner, eyes frantic. "Kutner. Kutner! What's about to happen?"
Kutner didn't even turn in his direction, his eyes sad.
House's dad opened the door. House jumped up, standing rigidly as his father advanced on him like a predatory animal.
"So, boy," his dad said menacingly, none of the false sweetness from dinner in his voice any longer. "Your mother tells me you mouthed off to her today while I was at the base."
House quivered, paling. "No, sir."
"No?" he questioned sharply, taking a step forward. House seemed to fighting with himself to not flee in the opposite direction.
"N-No," he repeated, swallowing. "I… was telling her what a star was made of."
His father sneered. "You corrected her."
A small pearl of determination bloomed on House's face, an expression that Wilson knew well. "She was wrong."
Without warning, John's hand snapped out and backhanded his son across the face. Wilson felt the impact like John had hit him instead of his son. House hit the wall behind him with a thud, sliding down with a dazed expression on his face, even as a bruise bloomed on his jaw.
Wilson surged forwards, but Kutner's hand on his arm held him back. "There's nothing you can do, Dr. Wilson. They can't see or hear you."
Wilson watched, his stomach in turmoil, as John snatched up his son from the ground by his shirt collar, holding him up. "Don't you dare talk back to your elders, boy!" he snarled. "Never!"
House nodded frantically, terrified. Apparently, though, that wasn't enough for his father. He flipped House around, grabbing his arm roughly and shoving him out the door.
Wilson cried out at the sharp pain in his arm. "What's he doing?" he questioned Kutner frantically. "Where's he taking him?"
Instead of answering, Kutner followed the pair out the door and down the stairs.
"I think you need to spend the night thinking about your actions, boy," his father said threateningly, leading him to the back door.
House protested, pressing up against his father with the beginnings of tears in his eyes. "No! No, sir, please!"
His father pushed against him roughly, opening the door. It was raining hard outside. He shoved his six year old out into the downpour.
House turned around, already soaked, as his father slammed the door. Tears were pushing at his eyes, but he didn't let them fall.
Wilson watched, sickened, as he tried the door hopelessly. It was locked fast.
The younger House turned and walked sadly to a tall tree in the middle of the yard, huddling under its branches. He gripped his knees and buried his head in between them, staring at the rain with eyes full of unshed tears.
Wilson stared at him, feeling the cold, hopelessness that seemed to pierce into the boy.
Kutner finally spoke up. "This sort of thing started when he was four."
"Four?" Wilson asked, sickened.
Kutner nodded. "This is actually one of the better nights."
As he spoke, Wilson watched the scenery change in a kind of sick montage. Every scene was one where House was being tormented by his father. A harsh kick there, that Wilson felt in his stomach like a freight train. Then the pain was gone, replaced with a sensation like being burnt alive. He watched, horrified, as John held down his child in a bath full of ice. A second later, and he watched his father burn a small, round scar into his child's arm with his cigarette butt. The clips got worse and worse, until, hundreds of beatings and broken bones later, House had grown into a tall, muscled young man, a senior in high school. He watched as the teenage version of House practically ran out of the house, bags in hand.
This moment slowed. Wilson could hear House yelling angrily at his father. "Yeah, I'm leaving! And I'm not coming back, you rotten bastard!"
He picked up his bags and made to get into a waiting car, but John stormed out the door after him. "Gregory House, don't you dare speak that way to me!"
House dropped his bag and turned to face his father, battle ready. "Just try and stop me!"
His father was still bigger and had a slight advantage over his son. He launched himself at his son, scuffling for a moment. House landed a harsh punch in his father's face and stomach, leaving him wheezing, but eventually, his father had him pinned with his arm behind his back.
Wilson winced as he felt the pressure on his shoulder that House was feeling as well.
"How dare you?" his father hissed, jerking House's arm up higher. House cried out as his father threatened to dislocate the arm, Wilson's pained shout not far behind.
This time, though, House had had enough. "Let GO of me!" he shouted, wriggling against his father's iron clad grip. "Now!"
His father smiled grimly, and pulled up.
House let loose an agonized cry as his shoulder was dislocated. Wilson felt a searing, white hot pain ripping through his shoulder, sending him to his knees.
John stood above his son, sneering. "You get out of here, you worthless shit. And don't come back."
Determinately, House fought the pain with a strength that Wilson knew he'd never be able to muster, staggering to his feet and picking up his bags. He threw them in the car, falling in the driver's seat.
Wilson was nearly blinded by the pain when the boy jerked his arm back into its socket, eliciting a scream from them both. After taking a breather, the young man peeled out of the driveway.
The world spun around him again, and Wilson felt his shoulder pain ease and dissipate with relief. Kutner was standing above him, the world around them dark as midnight.
You likey? Let me know if I should add to it in reviews, or leave as is. I'm kinda making this up as I go along, and I don't mind making adjustments!