"House" Remorse (TV Episode 2010) - Plot Summary Poster

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  • The team takes on the case of Valerie, an attractive female executive experiencing random episodes of excruciating pain. House agrees to take the case based on Valerie's looks, and while treating her, the men on the team are charmed by Valerie's beauty and personality, with Thirteen looking beyond the superficial to try to discover a link to her illness. Meanwhile, House uncharacteristically attempts to alleviate his conscience by reaching out to a former medical school colleague he wronged.


The synopsis below may give away important plot points.


  • Open with three corporate types getting on a plane. While reading an E-mail, one of the men gets dizzy and throws up. The indication is that he man has a drinking problem and the other two think he's fallen off the wagon. The lone woman in the group heads back towards the terminal and grabs her ears in agony.

    House's team decides to see the woman, who has been to half dozen doctors, in large part because Foreman mentions she is hot. She is also married to an average-looking social worker. House thinks the woman's heart is the problem.

    House gets a call from someone named Wibberly but doesn't answer.

    Wilson finds House sleeping in his office. House is hiding from Wibberly, a guy with whom he went to medical school. During therapy House apologized for switching their papers during a seminar. House wanted to check whether the professor hated him, but he ended up getting an 'A' with Wibberly's work. Wilson thinks it's strange this was the person House picked for an apology.

    The woman, Valerie, has an arrhythmia but it is not from her arteries. When Taub wheels her back to her room the man who had vomited in the opening, Russ, is waiting. He says he wasn't drunk at the airport but has been fired. He makes reference to them having had an affair. Valerie's husband Bill hears this but she manages to dismiss it because Russ recently had a nervous breakdown.

    The gang leans towards Russ having poisoned Valerie with prescription medication, but Thirteen doesn't buy it. Foreman picks Thirteen to start Valerie on beta blockers.

    Wibberly and House go to lunch. Wibberly never got his medical license and is bagging groceries. Wibberly failed the course he took with House based on the paper House wrote.

    Thirteen ignores the group's decision and instead gives Valerie an MRI. During the test she learns that Valerie does not feel emotion: She is a psychopath.

    After House says he thinks Valerie's heart ailment is related to her mental issue, she admits to having given Russ some Valium so he would look drunk and get fired. She admits to the affair and says she's with Bill because he has a trust fund.

    Working on the possibility Valerie has tertiary syphilis they start her on penicillin. Foreman tells House he thinks they need to punish Thirteen. House wants no part of the situation.

    House tells Wilson he thinks Wibberly has an agenda. Wilson suggests it's possible Wibberly is a happier person without the stress of working in medicine.

    House visits Wibberly and learns that he is about to lose his home. Medical bills from his father's illness and an adjustable mortgage have caught up with him.

    When Bill leaves the room Valerie, tells Thirteen she will sue her if she lets her husband know about her affair with Russ. Thirteen takes one of Valerie's arms to check her IV and the bone breaks.

    Valerie asks Cuddy to remove Thirteen from her case, but House backs Thirteen up. Valerie's bones were brittle due to kidney failure. Syphilis has been ruled out. House tells Thirteen and Foreman to figure out their relationship.

    After Valerie is taken away for radiation, Thirteen tells Bill they could still check for environmental causes. He mentions a landscaping class she took (her cover for the affair) and Thirteen suggests he look into that.

    Bill finds out the landscaping class was a lie and confronts her. She covers with a lie about work and it appears to work.

    Valerie tells Cuddy to fire Thirteen. Cuddy agrees to remove Thirteen from contact with Valerie.

    Thirteen finds out someone has called the medical board charging her with sexual harassment. She charges into Valerie's room and begins yelling at her. Foreman tells her to leave the room and reminds her that the only way she'll get in trouble is if she takes the bait. During the conversation Foreman apologizes for firing her.

    Valerie begins bleeding from her face and is unconscious. Uncomfortable making a tough decision about whether to bypass her liver, Bill eventually just lets Foreman do whatever he thinks is best.

    Without a firm diagnosis, the team knows Valerie will never get a new liver. Bill isn't the right blood type and they doubt she has any family members who would want to help her.

    House is writing Wibberly a check to cover some of his mortgage. Wilson is again angry that House is doing so much to make amends to Wibberly but nothing for Cuddy.

    Valerie's sister Sarah visits her briefly. Thirteen stops to ask about their past. They had an abusive father and Valerie was protective of Sarah when they were young. This indicates the psychopathic behavior is a symptom.

    House thinks Valerie has Wilson's disease (hepatolenticular degeneration) and that her recent change to a natural diet introduced more copper into her system. It is confirmed when they find her fingernails are blue.

    Thirteen tells Bill that she might not ever fully recover and probably never loved him in the first place. He seems willing to live with the way their relationship had been even if there was no love on her end.

    House goes to Wibberly with the check. Wibberly admits that House's paper got him an A+ and he ended up being an orthopedic surgeon for a decade before gambling debts cost him his license. House still wants to give Wibberly the check but he will not take it.

    Valerie's condition is improving and Thirteen tells her they can now get her on a transplant list. When Bill discusses their future together, she tells him he's pathetic and hints that the idea of spending the rest of her life with him might have made her sick. He leaves and Thirteen realizes this interaction means Valerie is getting better. A psychopath would have continued stringing him along, but Valerie chases him away because she feels guilty.

    There seems to be a great deal less tension between Thirteen and Foreman, and there are signs they might be getting along better.

    House returns to Wibberly's house, indecisive before sticks the check into the front door mail slot, then turns and quietly leaves.

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