A guy eats steak and watches basketball. Around him, a bunch of men in suits argue over whether he should testify. Bill, his lawyer brother, doesn't think that the federal government's witness protection program will keep him safe. The Feds think differently. The witness, Joey, just wants everyone to shut up and step away from the TV set so that he can watch the game. He does complain, though, that he wanted pasta for dinner and they gave him steak. He starts to have his post-dinner cigarette, which Bill grabs out of his mouth and breaks in two, telling him to eat his "quit candy" instead. Joey says that the reason Bill doesn't want him to testify is because he'll lose his brother to the witness protection program. He might lose him sooner than that, though, as Joey stands up to go to the bathroom, gets dizzy, and collapses. The Feds, suspecting Joey of faking it, yell at him that either he's dead or he's testifying. Joey doesn't respond, because he's in a coma.
While the post-credits sequence of someone asking House to take a case and his reluctantly agreeing to do it was getting boring and predictable, it's much preferred to what we get this time, which is Vogler and Cuddy having a meeting. Vogler wants House's budget reports. Cuddy says that House didn't turn anything in to her. House enters before I can fall asleep and demands a lawyer; he got a federal court order to treat a comatose witness. Vogler tries to out-House House by sarcastically saying that treating sick people will be a public relations nightmare for the hospital, but since Vogler isn't House, it doesn't quite work. House just rolls his eyes and says he doesn't like the federal government ordering him around. Cuddy says that House can either hire and, presumably, pay for, his own lawyer; refuse to treat the patient and go to jail; or just treat the patient. House snaps that Cuddy would love to see him in jail, since her latest fantasy involves conjugal visits. Vogler appears to find this very entertaining, although as soon as House is out of the office, he's all serious again and tells Cuddy that their meeting will end either when House is fired or Cuddy has managed to convince Vogler that the hospital needs a cranky, snarky, sexual-harrassy guy on staff.
An inspection of the patient reveals that he is, indeed, in a deep coma. He doesn't even respond when House blasts his brand-new Gameboy DS in his ear, although I'm not sure what response House was expecting from him other than some hints at how to beat the last level of Metroid. He reports the findings to the Cottages, saying that Joey is an eight on the Glasgow coma scale, which is pretty near dead and impossible to fake. Poisoning and head trauma have been ruled out as causes, but House orders an MRI anyway, as well as any other tests he can think of, since the Feds are footing the bill and we all know how much money the government has.