Open where we left off last season, with House (Hugh Laurie
) and Cuddy (Lisa Edelstein
) in his bathroom. Cuddy ends up fixing his cut and then kisses his bum leg. Off comes her shirt and they start fooling around.
Post-sex House asks "what's next?" but is only referring to the next few hours of their day. Her phone rings with a call from Alex (Chris Conner
), her new assistant. House grabs the phone. Alex tells him the neurosurgeon Richardson (George Wyner
) just threw up in the ER. House tells him to fix the problem and hangs up.
At the hospital the gang discusses House losing the patient and looks for a new case. It comes up that Thirteen (Olivia Wilde
) is going to take a leave of absence.
House and Cuddy clean up the broken glass in his bathroom. Her phone rings again but House talks her out of answering and suggest they spend the morning sans phones. Cuddy agrees, and points out Richardson has basically been a prisoner at the hospital for the past week since he is the lone neurosurgeon. If they are ever without one on staff, they cease to be a Level 1 trauma center and have to shut down the ER and ICU.
House tells Cuddy he's going to make her a special bath and ducks away to call Chase (Jesse Spencer
). He tells Chase to pretend he is a neurosurgeon to solve the problem.
Foreman (Omar Epps
) tells Thirteen he found ticket information indicating she is leaving for Rome the following day. He knows there is a medical center there conducting some research on her disease. Foreman thinks it is a mistake given her condition.
House and Cuddy take a bath together and talk about whether they are starting an actual relationship.
Chase tries to tell Alex that he is a neurosurgeon. But based on Cuddy's warning, Alex knows not to believe him.
House makes Cuddy breakfast. They talk about what they know of each other before House ducks away to the bathroom again when he gets a call. Wilson (Robert Sean Leonard
) tells him about the snafu with Alex. House tells him to fix the problem.
The team cannot find another neurosurgeon. The plan is to try and treat Richardson. Thirteen and Chase leave.
House and Cuddy continue to enjoy each other's company when Wilson starts pounding on the door. He is worried about House. Cuddy wants to let him in but House wants to ignore his friend. The ringer on his cell phone gives him up and House tells Wilson he's actually okay and not suicidal. Wilson finally says he's going to return if House doesn't show up for work the next day.
Richardson says he thinks he ate bad sushi, but food poisoning only partly explains his nausea. With the hospital being their first priority, Thirteen and Chase ask Richardson if he'll take a "fairly risky drug" if it will clear up his symptoms.
After another round of sex, Cuddy wonders whether House was hiding her from Wilson.
While waiting for Richardson to take his drug in the bathroom, Chase asks Thirteen if she wants to have sex. He had been planning to work on her for an extended period, but now wants to be blunt. She says nothing. Richardson comes out of the bathroom feeling much better but is now acting as if he's stoned.
Wilson tries to sneak into House's apartment and gets stuck in the kitchen window. House finally lets him in and tells him he's there with Cuddy. Wilson thinks House must have relapsed and is now hallucinating. House brings him into the bedroom, but Cuddy is nowhere to be found. Wilson accepts House isn't suicidal and leaves. Cuddy had been hiding in the closet.
At the hospital, Alex is quickly aware Richardson is in no position to treat patients. The team lies and says he has a blood sugar problem. A Department of Public Health inspector will be arriving in 15 minutes. Alex leaves. Taub (Peter Jacobson
) tells Thirteen he thinks her leaving is a good idea.
Cuddy says she hid because she forced House to go public and doesn't want to put any pressure on him.
The DPH guy shows up and the plan is to pretend Richardson is in surgery. Unfortunately he comes out of the OR and begins removing his clothes. The DPH guy tells them they must start the process of shutting down their ER and ICU.
Cuddy points out that earlier she told House she loved him and he did not say it back. He says words mean nothing before spelling out "I love you" with Scrabble letters.
Richardson is still acting high and they asks where he's been. He tells them he visited a seafood festival which means a million things could have made him sick. Thirteen thinks he might have eaten toad eggs, which would explain his symptoms.
Lying naked in bed, Cuddy and House toss around the idea of traveling to Europe together. She agrees, provided they go in a few weeks so she can arrange childcare.
The give Richardson the antidote. Foreman apologizes for prying into her plans and tells her she shouldn't be alone. He offers to go with her for a few days, but she declines. The hold hands and seems to have become friends.
Cuddy prepares to leave and House says "this isn't going to work." House thinks he'll go right back to his old ways and believes he's the worst kind of boyfriend for someone with a child.
Richardson seems fine. He answers a few questions from the DPH guy and the hospital is good to go. Chase again brings up his sex offer. This time she says no, but they hug.
Cuddy tells House his being afraid means he's happy. She assures him she likes him the way he is and couldn't be happier at the prospect of them being together. "I love you," is House's response.
Foreman tells Chase and Taub he's found out Thirteen isn't signed up for the trial at the hospital in Rome. She's now disconnected her phone.
Cuddy tells House "it's gonna be great" before leaving his apartment. They both smile at each other, but when the door closes, each has a look of concern.