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Sara M: A | Grade It Now!

House checks in on the Cottages. It turns out that Nicole has a cardiomyopathy out of nowhere. Did a scene get cut out or something? How'd they figure that out? Kumar says the ultrasound images of Nicole's heart they apparently did were "grainy," so they're having trouble pinpointing exactly what the problem is. House says the images aren't grainy. "They sure look grainy!" Taub says. Shut up, Taub. You are more annoying in this episode than Hadley. House says an iron overload could cause the images to look grainy. It would also cause all of Nicole's other symptoms. Kumar doubts this, but House says they can give Nicole an MRI to confirm his diagnosis, and he's looking forward to hearing that he can diagnose patients from 500 miles away better than they can in the same room as them. House should record this conversation and send it to that officer just to prove that all the other doctors in PPTH are, in fact, stupid.

With that, House is somehow able to call all the way to China on his cell phone. He reaches Nicole's interpreter and asks him if Nicole's biological parents looked "tan." The interpreter says they didn't look more "tan" than anyone else. Also, the lighting was really low in that temple. House asks about discolored teeth. The interpreter says they came from a village with no dentist. Everyone's teeth look funky. Getting nowhere, House is about to hang up when the interpreter says the couple might not have even been Nicole's parents in the first place, given their reaction to her. While the man was adamant that he had no daughter, the woman was "confused and frightened." "Thank you," House says, hanging up. Yo, that was polite! What show am I watching again?

House turns to Wilson for some differential diagnosing. Wilson humors him, even going so far as to say "I'm a middle-aged Chinese woman" before being asked why he'd be frightened to see a woman claiming to be his long-lost daughter. Wilson comes up with the theory that I can't believe House didn't think of first, considering that I assumed it from the start: the couple gave Nicole up for adoption because she was born under China's one child law and they wanted a son. This gets the wheels spinning in House's head, and he says maybe they tried to kill the daughter, but didn't succeed and the father ended up leaving her in an orphanage without telling his wife, who assumed she was dead. I guess the wife, like Wilson and criminal activities, just figures things had been taken care of without asking for proof. That would explain why they reacted so strangely. House wonders if and how an attempted murder 25 years ago caused Nicole's health problems now. As Wilson makes a few guesses, House looks at him and asks if he's not having fun. Don't push it, House.

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