([identity profile] wrote in [community profile] cuddys_house2009-07-02 06:28 am

Wednesday, 11 April, evening

"Are you sure your Dr. House will like this?"

"Don't worry, Mom," Cuddy said. She checked the rice dish simmering on the stove, inhaling the rich aroma of wild rice, mushrooms and a heady mix of herbs and seasonings. She replaced the lid on the pot and turned to face her mother. "As long as there are no pickles in it, he'll eat it."

Carol Cuddy gave her daughter a puzzled and somewhat suspicious look but she seemed willing to drop the subject when she turned to the counter to finish tearing the lettuce for a salad. Cuddy had been busy deflecting questions ever since her mother had arrived on Sunday. She understood her mother's curiosity but there simply was no way to explain House. He had to be experienced to be believed. She simply hoped her mother's experience of House would less...colorful than most of his social interactions.

"Are you sure he's coming?"

"Mom," Cuddy said, exasperated. Really, she'd had a good visit with her mother. They'd shopped, gossiped, put some finishing touches on the baby's room and generally done the usual mother-daughter things. It was only Mom's relentless questions about House that made Cuddy want to pack her mother back on the plane home.

She pulled the steaks, which had been marinating, out of the fridge and set the platter on the counter. She'd just been outside to check on the grill and the coals were just right. As soon as House arrived, she'd toss the steaks on the grill. Until he arrived, though, her mother's fascination with Cuddy's 'invisible' boyfriend was running white hot.

"He'll be here," Cuddy said. "He won't like it, but he'll be here."

"Why wouldn't he like it?" Mom asked as she rinsed her hands under the faucet. She dried her hands on the dishtowel and turned to face Cuddy, shoulders back and a determined look on her face. "What did you tell him about me?"

"I told him you're evil and you'll turn him into a toad if you don't like him." Cuddy relented with a little shrug when her mother merely rolled her eyes at her daughter. "It has nothing to do with you specifically. He's just.... House doesn't do well in social situations. He's awkward and he knows he's awkward and it makes him defensive."

There was a lot more to House's lack of social graces, of course, but Cuddy wasn't about to go into a long discourse on the nature of his emotional pathology. Hell, she didn't understand it completely herself so she could hardly explain it to someone else. Mostly, though, she wanted her mother to get to know House on her own terms. Cuddy was only trying to ease the way a bit.

"For heaven's sake--I'm not going to attack him," Mom said.

"Not by your definition, maybe," Cuddy said under her breath. House was likely to see her mother's questions in a completely different light. Knowing House, he was likely to see everything about this dinner in a different and unflattering light. There was nothing more she could do about that, though. She'd tried to prepare House, she'd tried to prepare her mom. Now she could only throw them together and hope she wasn't bringing on the apocalypse.

And speak of the devil.... "That's probably him," Cuddy said when she heard a faint knock from the front door. Her heart was suddenly fluttering rapidly in her chest as she headed for the door. She wanted so badly for this to go well. Or at least, to not go badly. She wanted her mother to see what she loved about House and she wanted House to accept that family was not a bad word. As with so many things with him, though, she had very little control over how it turned out.

She stopped in front of the door and took a few deeps breaths to calm herself, then she reached for the doorknob and opened the door.

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