"You're bleeding through your bandage." The beautiful woman who wakes up next to Chase points out the drops of blood on his chest. "Shouldn't we get you to a doctor?" They didn't do a lot of talking the previous night. His phone rings, but Chase slowly and painfully rolls himself over and grabs his crutches, hobbling to the bathroom to take some pain medication. "You never told me what caused your accident," the woman says. "I was stabbed by a patient," he tells her, casually. "That'll teach me to over-bill." When he picks up his phone he sees a new text: "ding dong."
House is at the door, and he notices the woman in the background scrambling to put her clothes on. "If she likes crippled guys, I'm free for the next six minutes." But Chase isn't in the mood for jokes, or for House. "What do you want?" he asks. House begins, "45-year-old truck driver, recurrent seizures . . ."
Chase cuts him off, annoyed. "Does this look like a good time?" "At least as good as the other 12 times that I've called and paged you in the last three weeks," House says. He would apologize again to Chase, but he hasn't accepted House's first apology. "You do work for me. I am entitled to ask when you're coming back." But Chase doesn't know when - or if - he's coming back. "If you've got a problem with that, fire me," he tells House, shutting the door.
"It's good to see you in the hospital. As a patient, if not as a doctor," Foreman says as he drops in on Chase's physical therapy. Foreman can sense that Chase isn't quite as "fine" as he says he is. "I know you. If all you do is physical therapy - and your nighttime version of it - you'll lose your mind faster than you regain those fine motor skills." Maybe putting in some time in the clinic would help.
"I have this terrible pain in my left shoulder." Chase walks into an exam room to see two nuns, the younger one complaining of the shoulder pain, but no chest pain or lightheadedness. "She'd been helping to make the altar breads that morning, but no hard physical work or repetitive motion," the older nun explains of the onset of the woman, Moira's, pain.
Chase finds enlarged lymph nodes and wants to first rule out breast cancer. "I'm going to do a quick breast exam. Do you mind stepping out for a moment?" he asks the older nun. When she leaves, Chase is free to talk about another possibility: angina, made worse by stress.
"Might not be a coincidence that the pain started on the verge of a major life change," he says. Moira's blue veil gave her away to Chase as a postulant, meaning she hasn't actually taken her vows yet. And the brown vestments mean they're Carmelites, cloistered nuns. That explains why she has a chaperone to a doctor visit. "I was a seminarian," Chase tells Moira, though he never took his vows. "Cassock made my ass look fat," he jokes, relaxing her.
As Chase begins the exam, Moira admits she is having second thoughts about her decision. "A life of perpetual enclosure and almost complete silence? If you weren't wrestling with this, I'd say there was something really wrong with you," Chase says. More worryingly, Chase finds a mass. He's going to admit her to check it out.
"It's just a benign fat deposit." Wilson consults with Chase, but he doesn't see any sign of cancer. And her stress test was fine, too, so it's not angina. "Is it possible she hurt her shoulder?" It's House, followed by Park, Adams, and Taub. Chase looks at Wilson, who protests his innocence in leading House to him. "You were being cagey about where you were going," House says of Wilson. "And Chase being cagey in general, good chance I'd find the two of you in the same cage."
Chase makes it clear he doesn't want House's help with Moira's case, but that doesn't stop House from giving a diagnosis: "Your soul sister is having a fungal infection from the unprocessed wheat in the altar breads. Explains the shoulder pain and the jumbo lymph nodes."
"Ever surf Kirra Point?" Chase is a bit taken aback by Moira's question. "I've surfed all over the Gold Coast. Don't tell me you have?" She hasn't, but she grew up surfing on Maui. "If you don't mind me asking, why are you becoming a nun?" Chase asks. He knows she's older than most postulants. What was her life like before this? "Worked as a nanny. Moved around a lot. Bunch of failed relationships," Moira says.
"And then what: God spoke to you? You heard the calling?" Chase asks. Moira looks like she isn't sure if he's being sarcastic or not. "Something like that," she says. "Does there have to be some dramatic moment where the skies part?"
For Chase, with his father working a lot and his mother's alcoholism, he was in Catholic school most of the time. "Priests and nuns were the closest I had to family," he says. "Turned out that wasn't much of a reason to join the priesthood." Suddenly, Moira bolts upright in bed. "I think I may throw up." Chase hands her a bowl. It's not a fungal infection.
"You're probably wondering why the soda balloons." Chase ambles over to House, who's filling balloons on the second-flood walkway overlooking the lobby. "You're not the only one whose life spiraled out of control when you got knifed in the ventricle. Taub has decided . . ." But Chase doesn't care. "I need help with my patient. She's vomiting. That's not from a fungal infection."
House wants Chase to admit that he's "a confused mess" first, but Chase knows that even though the case isn't that interesting, House will find Chase's interest in the case interesting, and won't be able to help himself. "When you put it that way," House says, "ascending cholangitis." He bombs a balloon down toward Taub, but Taub deftly moves out of the line of fire. "Can't be," Chase says. "Bilirubin's normal." "Clinical signs can show up days before lab signs," House says, hurling another bomb, but again outmaneuvered by Taub.
"She can't feel her foot at all." When Chase gets back to Moira's room, the older nun, Sister Joan, is there, too. Moira is worried now. "What does this mean?" It means he'll be spending more time consulting with House.
"I need more help. My patient has a new symptom: ischemic foot." Chase seeks out House and the team while they're DDxing another patient in House's outer office. "Get the lecture out of your system so we can talk about my case." House moves toward the whiteboard, seemingly to hang up his cane. "Let me start with an allegory . . ." But he quickly grabs a paint gun and aims it at Taub, who just as quickly grabs a tray and shields himself from the multiple shots. Now Chase's curiosity is piqued.
"Your overreaction to your stabbing is to blame me, even as you're drawn to me; Taub's is to take moronic self-defense classes that won't defend him against anything," House says, quickly aiming again at Taub, who raises his shield just in time. "Krav Maga," Taub says. "Which helped me block your shot, and will continue to help me defend myself in a building full of drugged-up strangers." House is trying to prove to Taub that unexpected things happen, and no class can help you prepare for them.
Adams wonders if Moira has a vasospasm. "That would explain everything but the lymph nodes. And any minor infection could have caused those," Chase agrees.
"Are you OK?" Adams catches up to Chase by the elevator. "I almost got you killed by bringing a scalpel into that room. I could feel better about that," Chase says. But he saved her life, too. "How can you not be traumatized?" Adams asks. Chase nonchalantly tells her that he can't change what happened. "Can only make better choices from here." If he's so Zen about it all, then why's he hanging on to his anger toward House? "I'm seeing a trauma counselor," she tells him. "I think you should, too." But he insists he's all right.
"You're using an iPod. I've never seen you use rosary beads." Chase is becoming curious about Moira's commitment to her decision. She's still on temporary vows now, though. When he quizzes her on contradictory Bible passages, she tells him that he can't argue away her faith. And not because it's so strong, but because it's not. "I'm not saying I don't have faith. I just haven't felt the calling yet." She's drawn to the silence and the order that she needs. "I'm hoping everything else will come later." Chase can't believe it.
"What you're headed towards now, 14 hours a day in silent prayer" he says. "Never having a family. Never touching another human being." But Moira has already heard from the nurses about Chase. "Nothing's wrong with having fun," he says.
"They said you were almost killed three weeks ago. You go right back to fun?" she asks. Is that why she wants to be a nun, because someone broke her heart? "No, I'm just looking for something more," she tells him. "So am I," Chase says.
"Really? 'George Washingbaum'?" Chase walks into the next exam room and sees Taub waiting for him. He's just hiding from House for a while. Chase is about to leave, but then he asks if Taub thinks the self-defense classes are making a difference. "Not as much as House's surprise attacks," Taub says. "He thinks three steps ahead, so I do, too. Which is why you should accept his apology and come back to the team. He's annoying, he's maddening, but he makes us all better."
"Looks like you're ready to go home." Chase examines Moira, whose foot is better and shoulder pain is gone. "I'll get the car and meet you out front," Sister Joan says. After she leaves, Moira tells Chase about her past. "Six years ago, I was a nanny in Honolulu for this beautiful two-year-old boy. I loved him. Probably spent more time with him than his own parents. One day I was in the park, talking with another nanny, he wandered out of the sandbox into the street, into the path of a moving car."
Chase tells her she shouldn't blame herself, or run away from what could still be a good life. "I'm running to God," Moira says. "After what happened, don't you want to remake your life?" She knows it will be hard, especially not being able to touch anyone. Chase takes her hand briefly, before she leaves.
"Who knew Mother Inferior was a smoking hottie?" Chase's hand-holding didn't escape House's attention. "You think I'm hitting on a nun?" Chase asks. "Angry at God or just need a challenge?" But House has a third alternative: "You're terrified of intimacy, which is why you're a serial slut. But right now, you're grasping at an emotional life raft. Ideally, someone for whom intimacy is not an option."
"I'm talking to this agent. He's a bit of a sleaze, but he's really excited about representing me." Later that evening, Chase is dining with a woman as she talks about her career. He's trying to look interested - and failing. "Am I boring you?" the woman asks. "Unfortunately, yeah," Chase says. When he arrives home, he sees Moira waiting at the door of his apartment. "You were right. I was running away," she says. She takes his hand, and they kiss.
"So, are we going to spend the rest of eternity in a lake of fire, while pointy-tailed demons poke at us with sticks?" Chase asks Moira the next morning, when they wake up together. "This is a little scary for me," she admits. "I had a whole life planned. Not that I wasn't struggling with it. And then I met you. Don't worry - I know you're not the relationship type." She plans to try to rebuild her old life, get an apartment, get her job back.
Suddenly, she looks confused. "Moira?" Chase asks. "I'm sorry, did you say something?" she asks. He brushes back her hair and notices a huge lump on her neck. "Are your ears ringing?" he asks. "Yeah. What does that mean?" She starts coughing up blood, all over Chase. "We've got to get you back to the hospital right away," he says.
"The artery that's bringing blood to your brain, it's coming apart. It means you could stroke," Chase tells Moira as he races her to the hospital. The lump on her neck is huge now. When they arrive and she's placed on a gurney, she starts making strange sounds. Chase asks her to repeat a phrase, but it comes out all jumbled.
"Carotid dissection. 4-inch pulsatile mass in her neck and some Broca's aphasia. It's got to be a clot keeping her from bleeding out." Chase is scrubbing in and telling the team about Moira. When House walks in, he sees the blood, now dried, on Chase's neck and deduces what happened. "Cut yourself shaving? You know that can happen when the nun you woke up with coughs blood on you."
A nurse interrupts them: the clot broke. Moira is pale white, and blood is draining from her nose. Chase is planning to do the operation himself, but the team objects. "Your judgment's compromised," Adams says. "I spent the night with her. It doesn't change how I make an incision," Chase argues. Adams looks to House for support, but House tells Chase to do the surgery.
"You're not going to put her on bypass?" Taub and Adams question Chase's decision to clamp Moira now, and risk stroke, rather than wait half an hour for the bypass to be set up. "She's already got neurological symptoms. If we wait 30 minutes she'll definitely have brain damage," Chase says. If he gets it done in five minutes, she won't stroke out. "You don't know that you will. And you can't know because you can't think clearly about her," Adams says.
But they're soon over five minutes, and Chase is still suturing the wound in Moira's neck. He's going to start lightening the anesthesia, before finishing closing the wound. "Can you hear me?" he asks Moira, as she comes around. She nods her head. "Repeat this: no ifs, ands, or buts," Chase says. She's able to repeat the phrase. It worked.
"We removed the artery. Found nodules." Chase asks House for advice, but House is more interested in finding Taub for another sneak attack. He spies on Taub slowly and carefully walk down the hall, looking terrified that House appear at any moment.
"Plaques could be confused for nodules," House says. "Which would mean . . ." "Syphilis," Chase realizes. It would explain the shoulder and foot involvement. "Hope you practiced immaculate contraception." He cocks a giant water cannon from behind a column, then turns toward the hall, to shoot Taub. "Boo-yah!" House screams, as he fires. Except the water sprays right in his own face. "'Boo-yah' to you, too," Taub says.
"But I hadn't had sex in years." Moira is confused about the diagnosis. "Tertiary syphilis means you've had the disease for at least that long," Chase explains. It's probably not contagious at this point, so Chase likely doesn't have it."
Moira still looks worried. "Can it cause hallucinations? While I was on the operating table - it didn't feel like a dream - I saw the boy who I was caring for, the one who died. He walked right up to me. He just held my hand. It was like he forgave me. Do you think that's crazy?" Chase tells her it should give her solace, help her to move on.
"You slept with your patient?" Adams wasted no time in reporting Chase to Foreman, who's furious. "You're off the case." Even though he saved her from brain damage? "She's still sick," Foreman says. "If she dies, we'll be in the middle of a brand-new investigation. I gave you time, leeway, and you decided to do whatever the hell you wanted."
Chase can't believe it. "House can dance all over the rules, get me knifed, and he gets a pass," he says. "I break a rule, no one gets hurt, but you kick me off my own case?" And he's angry with Adams. "I took that scalpel for you!" "That's why I did this," she tells him. "Three weeks ago, you never would have slept with a patient. And you never would have operated on her after. You need help."
"I need to get away from House, and anything that reminds me of him," Chase says. "By breaking the rules, not caring what anybody else thinks . . . you're going to get away from him by turning into him?" Adams asks. Suddenly their beepers go off.
"It hurts," Moira says, grimacing in pain. Adams checks her abdomen. "Right upper quadrant. Pain and distention." It's her liver.
"The liver failure could be from intraoperative hypertension." The team is discussing Moira's latest symptom, even though Chase technically isn't supposed to be working on it. But when all options are eliminated, they're left with liver failure as another symptom of whatever Moira's got. Trousseau's syndrome could send clots, cause the ischemic foot. Add the enlarged lymph node, macrocytosis," Taub begins. "Disseminated T-cell lymphoma," Park finishes Taub's thought. Wilson only ruled out breast cancer.
Chase asks about sarcoidosis, but there's no evidence to back it up. "Then we've got to biopsy," he says. "Yeah, Foreman's clearly wrong. You're clearly not grasping at straws, because you're clearly not emotionally involved," House says. "I know you want to believe that this is something you can cure. It's not. I'm sorry."
"How soon will they know if it's cancer?" Moira asks Chase. It'll only be a few hours. "And if it is?" she asks. He halfheartedly tells her there's always chemo. "You say that like it's not going to work," Moira says. "It could extend your life," he tells her. Years? Chase shakes his head. "I'll be here as much as you need," he says.
Moira smiles. "You still never told me why you left the seminary," she says. He tells her that he was caught with the wife of the groundskeeper. "Got me with a rake. Those scars on my ass, you may have noticed?" She laughs. "Why didn't you tell me that before?" "Because it was so shallow. I wasn't exactly wrestling with great theological questions," he says.
But Moira thinks there's more to it. "You don't sleep with the groundskeeper's wife unless you're struggling with whether you belong there," she says. He always wanted to believe. "It made my life easier, but it never took." "Doesn't . . . mean . . . it's too late," Moira says, struggling to get the words out. Her jaw feels heavy.
"She has jaw claudication," Chase tells House. Claudication with carotid dissection might mean giant cell arteritis. House thinks she should be put on steroids. "She's gonna live," Chase says. "Yeah, and then what?" House asks.
"They say my liver function's better, that I can get out of here soon," Moira says. She's looking forward to leaving, and Chase already has plans: a surfing trip to Mexico. Moira looks concerned. "What's wrong?" Chase asks. "I spoke to the prioress. I felt the calling," she says. She's going back. It was when she saw the vision of the boy. "I felt God's love. His grace. I've been waiting my entire life for that."
"It's not real," Chase tells her. "You felt oxygen deprivation. You felt your brain releasing noradrenaline." He didn't tell her that before because he wanted her to move on with her life. "I wanted to reassure you. I wanted you to feel better." And now? "I think I love you," he says.
"Noradrenaline and Near-Death Experiences." House is reading an article over Chase's shoulder. Chase wants to show Moira that what she's feeling is just chemical. "She's throwing away her life because of blind faith," he says. "So are you," House says. "She's found something she wants to build her life around. It's a total illusion, but apparently she'll take a little ignorance with her bliss. You want to take that away. Either your relationship just blows up like every other non-magical romance, or she stays with you but blames you for stripping all the meaning out of her life."
Chase thinks House just doesn't like that he's reassessing his life and wants to make some changes. "You're incapable of human connection, so you want everyone to be like you," Chase says.
"If I wanted you to be like me, I would be urging you to make a stupid, stubborn decision that blows up your life and leaves you lonely and miserable," House responds. "You reassess your life when you've made mistakes. You didn't. You just got stabbed."
When Chase walks back to Moira's room with the article he printed, he can see she's holding rosary beads and praying to herself. He throws the report away. Later, he's there when she's getting ready to leave with Sister Joan. "I'm happy I knew you," he says. "So am I," Moira tells him. He walks away, but she follows him into the hall, and takes his hand for a last time.
"Don't look at the book." Chase stops by a room where Park is getting ready to perform a procedure she hasn't done since her residency. She knows all the steps, but she doesn't want to make a mistake. Chase talks her through it.
Later, Foreman is presenting a case to House and the team:"24-year-old water treatment worker with pyrexia and double-vision . . ." Chase, clean-shaven and wearing his white coat, takes a deep breath and pulls up a chair at the table. Foreman slides the case file over to him, and House looks over, approvingly.