Wilson drives House home. He has a "nice facility" picked out for House, who thanks him sadly and then looks in the backseat. Yep, CTB is sitting right there, grinning away. House packs at home. CTB says it'll be "like living with Mom again. Delightful!" I guess House's subconscious didn't mind his childhood years. Or it's being sarcastic because it's still angry at House for trying to insulin shock it away. Wilson answers House's phone to tell Foreman that his boss is currently unavailable. Foreman doesn't care, saying that the infection has made Penelope septic and brought her BP down too low for them to be able to operate and remove the abscess. "He's off the case," Wilson says, and hangs up. Sucks to be Penelope! House made her skin fall off and now he's abandoning her in her time of need, much like he's abandoned most of his patients these last few episodes. Wilson lies to House that everything is fine at PPTH, and both CTB and House know that isn't true but also don't care. House is more concerned about why he doesn't feel scared right now when his life is falling apart and he's on his way to a place that will take him off the pills he thinks he can't live without. "We've always been able to find a way to cheat," CTB purrs. House thinks for a moment, then shakes his head. CTB is right. "It won't work," he sighs. Wilson says it will, because this time House wants it to work. "Do we?" CTB asks with an angry edge in her voice. "It's your only option," Wilson says. House says that doesn't mean it'll work, which is probably why he's been so resistant to trying it in the first place. It's better to never know how you'd do than to try and know for sure you'd fail. House seems to have another idea. He leaves the apartment and Wilson leaves the episode.
Back at PPTH, the Cottages have to figure out what to do with Penelope. "We need a blood vessel holder-together machine," Hadley says very scientifically. Foreman says they could try shooting Penelope up with dopamine to close her blood vessels and thus raise her blood pressure enough to operate. Taub thinks Penelope's heart will "explode" with that much dopamine in it. Foreman says if they don't do it, her heart will fail anyway. Hadley wonders what happened to House. Foreman says it sounded like he was "done," and they should all be used to this by now anyway. That's enough to convince Hadley to go with the dopamine. Well, that and probably the fact that it was suggested by her boyfriend.
House limps into Cuddy's office looking lost and very serious. Cuddy doesn't notice it, figuring he's here to give her the usual hard time. He sighs and quits. She still doesn't get it, figuring this is his way of bargaining for vacation time or something and saying she has to get home before the nanny takes off. "You're gonna go suckle the little bastard child who makes you feel good about yourself," House says. Yeah, that's how you ask for a favor. "Screw you," Cuddy replies, and starts to walk out the door. CTB appears as House lets Cuddy get halfway through the door before telling her that he's hallucinating. Cuddy immediately figures it's from Vicodin and decides her foster daughter can wait. She wants to admit him to PPTH, but House says that a rehab facility won't work because he knows he'll find a way to cheat. "These people know what they're doing," Cuddy says, severely overestimating the capabilities of the PPTH rehab team as well as totally forgetting that House managed to cheat no problem the last time he was in rehab. House says they might know what they're doing, but they don't know him. And she does. House's subconscious tells him that Cuddy isn't his keeper. That doesn't mean she can't help, so House tells Cuddy he needs her. Yay! But also, why did it take forty-five minutes of the episode for this to happen? And why doesn't House need Wilson? He needed him for the first three-quarters of the episode, but when it comes down to it, he turns to someone who's been absent all episode instead? And then Wilson disappears for the rest of the episode, seemingly not caring what's going on with his best friend who was about to admit himself into rehab while his life was falling apart? That seems so unfair to fans of the House/Wilson relationship. But I'm not one of them! I like House and Cuddy, so this is great! Cuddy makes arrangements with a baby-sitter. She may have a daughter, but House is still obviously more important.
Penelope survives the surgery and the abscess is removed. But then a nurse notices that her fingers and toes are starting to turn black. This is typically bad news for people who like their appendages.
Back at House's house (sans Wilson. I guess he let himself out), the detox has begun in record time as House barfs into a bucket. Cuddy rubs his shoulder much more than she has any right to and goes to make him tea. While she's gone, he desperately checks various hiding spots for pills. But Cuddy's already been there and found them all. I guess they've been at House's place for some time, then, since it would take days to find and clear out all of House's Vicodin cubby holes. This also brings up the question of why they're doing this at House's place at all. Go to a hotel room! The worst thing you'll find stashed away there is a Bible. Cuddy asks House where to look for pills in the kitchen. Shaking and sweaty, he stammers out the coffee cup on the top shelf. Ah, but that was only a test, Cuddy says. She already swept the kitchen and found the pills. CTB smiles that House made it through this round. Now Cuddy will think he's come clean about everything, which he obviously has not. You know, if CTB would just shut up, she'd have a much better chance of surviving this. House is likely to tell Cuddy where every single pill is hidden just to beat her at this point. Over CTB's protests, he tells Cuddy to search his shoes in the closet. "It's like I don't even know who you are anymore!" CTB says. Hee. House groans and suffers on the couch. Cuddy holds his hand. This should be good practice for when she'll have to do the same thing for her daughter, whose drug addiction problems can be traced back to a childhood full of abandonment.
Chase wakes Penelope up in the OR to tell her that they've finished the surgery on her heart, but there's more! The dopamine that saved her life also shut down the blood vessels in her hands and feet, so they'll have to be amputated. Penelope refuses, of course, since dancing is her life. It's cool to have a passion and all, but what is Penelope supposed to do ten years from now when she's too old to be a star ballerina?
Chase and the Cottages return to the meeting room to figure out what to do next. Hadley suggests getting Jeremy to convince his girlfriend to agree to the amputations, but Chase reminds her that Jeremy took off as soon as he found out that his girlfriend gave him gonorrhea. Good for Jeremy. While people like Chase and Cuddy allow Cameron and House to stomp all over them repeatedly and without consequence, Jeremy takes a stand and says NO MORE! Foreman decides that he's done with doctoring for the day. They got the diagnosis and cured Penelope, so who cares that she'll probably die anyway? And that's just another reason why Foreman is a shitty doctor. Taub is a good doctor, so he says that they have to stay until they've figured out a way to save Penelope's hands and feet. Chase adds that if Penelope dies, it'll be because House wasn't around to save her and they weren't smart enough to do it themselves. That convinces Foreman to stay. Penelope's life wasn't enough for Foreman, but the chance to prove he's just as good as House was. Interesting priorities all around this week.
House hovers over the toilet bowl, waiting to throw up again. Ah, that's always fun. Cuddy hands him some ginger for his nausea. He says he'd rather have Vicodin. Or pot. Or a coma. He's tried two out of three of those suggestions in this episode alone. And with that, he sees a lone Vicodin pill on the bathroom floor. Way to clean up, Cuddy. Have you ever dropped a pill on a tile floor? It's pretty noisy. How could she mis