Summary: Sometimes, unexpected meetings lead to great friendships
Season/Sequel: post season 6 for House MD and season 5 AU for Stargate Atlantis
Spoiler: Help Me for House MD
Archives: my website, Command Dynamics, Atlantica, Abydos Gate:
Fanfiction, others ask please, I never refuse
Disclaimer: I own neither the show nor the characters. I
don’t earn any
money; I just do it for fun.
Author’s Note: Written for the Elizabeth Weir Fest on LJ. The
prompt was: lizabeth Weir and Lisa Cuddy both had very difficult jobs
and difficult men to handle. This fic is post-Help me for House MD This is not in the same verse as my other Atlantis/House crossovers. Many thanks to Jaclyn for the beta job, as always!
Of unexpected meetings and friendship
"Why do we put up with them, again?" Lisa Cuddy asked the other woman at the table, who chuckled at the question.
"Sometimes, I do wonder."
Elizabeth Weir smiled at Cuddy's reply.
She had met the doctor in the lobby of the hotel they had both been
staying at, two years ago. She had literally bumped into her and her,
thankfully, lukewarm coffee had stained Cuddy's once immaculate shirt.
She had apologized profusely and had even offered to pay for the
cleaning, but the other woman had only agreed to a coffee.
After that first coffee, they had spent more time together, having
found that they were more alike than what they would have thought. They
were both women in charge in a men's world, and never backed down even
when faced with challenges. All in all, the week they had had to spend
in Washington, Elizabeth for meetings with the President and the IOA
regarding Atlantis, and Cuddy for a medical conference, had gone by
without any of them really noticing.
They had decided to keep in touch after that week, and exchanged
e-mails at least once a week, more often if one or the other needed to
vent about work and their colleagues.
This was how Elizabeth had first heard about one Doctor Gregory House.
Whenever the head of the Diagnostic Department of PPTH did something to
annoy his boss, which sometimes could happen once a day, she would
receive an e-mail with many details on the best way to kill him. She
hoped that Cuddy would never go through with her murderous ideas,
otherwise she would be asked to be a witness for prosecution. She had
also turned to Elizabeth after Joy's failed adoption, and her
subsequent kiss with House, asking for advice on what to do next. She
had been the first to know about her dating Lucas, and a few months
later, about his proposal.
But Elizabeth hadn't been surprised at all when she received an e-mail
the next day to tell her about the break-up with Lucas, and her
decision to try and see if she and House could make it work. She had
actually been the one to force Cuddy to confront her feelings for the
other doctor, and never believed it when she was told that she didn't
love him. She had known better and was happy that her friend had
decided to give them a chance at a relationship.
In return, Elizabeth had sent Cuddy e-mails whenever things took a bad
turn. She never went into details, never revealed classified
information, but she had often asked her to be her rebound wall, to
give her advice. With Cuddy, she could talk freely about everything and
anything, something she couldn't do on Atlantis, not even with Teyla or
John, her two closest friends there. They were working with and for
her, and there were just some things she couldn't discuss with a
She had also asked for her advice when her relationship with John
evolved into something else, something more. It had happened after
Carson's death; they had sought the other out, needing the comfort the
other provided for them. That first night after that fateful Sunday,
they had naturally crossed the line from friends and co-workers to
Cuddy had reassured her many times after she told her about the IOA
breathing down their neck, and like any other girl friend had asked for
details. Elizabeth had confided in her when their personal relationship
had been strained by their working one, and had returned the advice
after Cuddy started to date House.
They had often joked about how they should have a double date to see
which of them got the worst of the two men, both claiming that they
would win. But tonight, as Elizabeth and John were on Earth for a week,
and visiting her mother, they were finally able to do it.
As they sat at the dining table, a very awake Rachel on her mother's
lap despite the late hour, they watched their men argue about Johnny
Cash Vs. The Rolling Stones. They didn't really know how that had
started, and didn't really want to know.
"You think they'll end up agreeing?" Cuddy asked.
"Oh, they will agree. That the other is in the wrong, that is."
"Yeah, I thought so, too." She paused, before turning her gaze to the
woman sitting across from her. "So, you're going to tell me where you
work, one day?"
"Who knows? Maybe one day we'll need Greg's expertise..."
"Just as long as you give him back after you're done."
"You love it there."
It was more a statement than it was a question, and Elizabeth smiled in answer.
"Despite everything that can happen, the dangers lurking in the
shadows, I wouldn't give it up for anything in the world. It is home."
Cuddy could see in her eyes that she meant every word she said. She
often wondered how a diplomat, who had spoken against the use of the
armed force many times in the past, ended up working for the US Air
Force. But she guessed, that unless one day, she found out what her job
really was, she would never be able to understand it. But she supposed
that whatever it was, it was worth it.
"You remember the six weeks I barely gave you any news?" Elizabeth asked, her eyes clouding as she remembered those days.
"Of course. I tried to make you talk, but I couldn't get through. You
were avoiding my questions. And then, one day, you were back to the
Elizabeth I know. As if it all changed overnight."
"Well, it did. I can't tell you everything, you know that, but I can
explain a few things. During that time, I was back in the States.
Something came up, and we all had to come back here. Without any
warning. Despite everything we did. I settled in a new flat, and I
started screening my calls, didn't talk to anyone, not even to the
boys, even though they all tried. For six weeks."
"I wish we made our little intervention a bit sooner," John said,
remembering that time, as he and House took their places back at the
"It wouldn't have changed anything, you and I both know that," she
replied, squeezing the hand he was resting on the table. "Anyway. One
evening, the boys finally talked me into dinner with them."
"We wouldn't take no for an answer," he interrupted her, earning him a glare.
"During dinner, our cell phones rang," she continued. "Something had
happened. Again, you know I can't get into details. We didn't think
about what could happen to us, we just went back there, defying direct
orders. And then we were home."
"And that was when you started writing long e-mails again."
Tears welled up in Elizabeth's eyes as she remembered that time. Those
six weeks were still something she didn't like to talk about to anyone,
not even to John. She had felt lost without Atlantis. As if sensing her
feelings, John pressed a quick kiss to her temple, and squeezed her
"How can your work be so important to you?" House asked, ending the moment.
"You don't understand," John was the one to reply. "This may look like
just like any other job for you, but for us, not just for me and
Elizabeth but for everyone else too, this means so much more. This is
home. The only place some of us can call home for a very long time. And
we have a duty here, one we can't just turn our backs to."
"You military...," House muttered but they could all hear him clearly.
"You always put your work above anything else, always try to make people see your way..."
"House!" Cuddy stopped him. "That was not necessary."
"Leave him, Lisa. I can understand what he thinks, and why he thinks
that. I was quite the same before. Maybe less cynical, but basically
"Before what?" House couldn't help but ask, wondering what could have made her change her views on the military."
"Well, before a meeting with the President. Of the United States," she
added, knowing that the question was on their minds. "It seems like a
lifetime ago, now." She paused, remembering the first time she had
heard about the Stargate Program. "You know. I hope that one day, we
can show you. That one day, you will be able to understand what we
"I think I do, in a way," Cuddy said, smiling at Elizabeth. "You feel
responsible for your work, and for everything there. It's just logical
that you felt that way when something took it away from you."
"Of course, you would understand as you feel just the same for your
precious little baby. I was talking about the hospital here, not
Rachel," he added when she sent him a look. "Now about our previous
conversation," he said, turning towards John. "I still say the Rolling
Stones win hands down!"
"What? No! Have you ever listened to Johnny Cash's songs? The lyrics are so powerful, they..."
Elizabeth and Cuddy rolled their eyes at them, tuning them out as they
left the table and went to the other side of the room to argue. They
both still thought that they were right and that the other was wrong,
meaning that no one could win the argument any time soon.
"About your question," Elizabeth started, but as she saw Cuddy's blank
look, she clarified. "The 'why do we bother putting up with them' one."
"Oh, that one! So, what about it?"
"I think I know the answer. We put up with them because we love them. I think it's as simple as that."
"Yeah, you might be right. But we'd better not tell them that. They
would think they can do anything they want just because of that."
"And we don't want that."
They started to laugh, and when Rachel started clapping her hands as if
she approved with what had been said, they laughed even louder.
Finally, after a good minute or two, they calmed down, wiping a few
tears from their eyes. They could still hear John and House arguing in
the corner, as if they didn't even hear them.
"Rachel has gotten so big," Elizabeth mused out loud, remembering the
first time Lisa had sent her photos of the infant who had turned into
the toddler sitting before her.
"I know. Believe me, I know. I can't believe she'll turn two in a few
weeks. It still feels like yesterday when I first held her in my arms."
"How is it going lately, between House and her?"
"Better and better. She loves it when he plays the piano, and often
asks that he plays for her. It's a good thing they're bonding around
that, and I wouldn't be surprised if she ended up playing the piano
too, one day. She called him papa for the first time, the other day. He
was completely stunned by it, and I'm not sure he completely recovered,
even now. I don't even know where she picked it up! I didn't say
anything, and I don't think Marina did."
"Who knows how kid's brains work? Maybe she picked it up in one of her
cartoons and decided she had to call Greg that." Elizabeth shrugged,
smiling, before she continued. "I'm happy for you, Lisa. I'm happy that
you have finally got everything you wanted."
"Thank you. It's been a long road, but we're finally there. What about
you? Anything you'd like to tell me?" she asked, looking at her
straight in the eyes, a smile playing on her lips.
"No, nothing. We... Well, we talked about it, and we've decided to try
for a baby," Elizabeth finally admitted under her friend's scrutiny.
"That's wonderful news. You'll make a great mother. I've seen you
earlier with Rachel, when I was making dinner. You're a natural."
"Well, let's hope that you're right. But we have time for that."
"Time for what?" John asked as he and House joined them again, apparently done with their disagreement for the night.
As soon as he had sat down, House had Rachel on his lap, as she had
asked for him. Elizabeth smiled at the sight, wondering once more if it
was the same Gregory House that Cuddy once described as someone who
couldn't stand children.
"Time for what?" John repeated his question, jolting her from her thoughts.
"I was telling Lisa about our little project," she replied, and she saw
on his face that he immediately understood what she meant.
"What? You got a bun in the oven?"
"No, not yet," she answered, rolling her eyes at him, playfully.
"So, you're done with arguing who's the best singer of all time?" Cuddy asked, wondering who had won it in the end.
"We agree to disagree," John told her, and House narrowed his eyes at him.
"I still think..."
"Come on, House," Cuddy interrupted him, not wanting them to continue
arguing. "Be fair play. Remember what the great philosopher Jagger
said: 'You can't always get what you want'," she said, throwing what he
told her once, years ago, back at him.
"Yeah, yeah. Well, you could help us, actually. So, the Rolling Stones
or Johnny Cash?" he asked, and he and John both looked at them
Elizabeth and Cuddy looked at each other, shared a smile, and answered at the same time.
They watched as their men's eyes widened, as if they had suddenly grown a second head, and started to laugh again.