Artist Brandon is painting a nude as the model’s husband looks on encouragingly. The couple looks at the painting and the husband demands his money back. When the artist says it looks like the wife, the husband slugs him and leaves. Brandon’s wife Heather comes downstairs and asks him what he drew: the portrait is hideously disfigured.
Lucas is meeting with House to provide him with a report on what he’s discovered about the team when Cuddy comes in and informs House that she’s not going to let House use hospital funds to pay Lucas’ bills. The team is going over Brandon’s case and examining his paintings, but only the last one shows visual agnosia. As they go over the case, House brings up the information that he’s found out about Kutner and Thirteen, and hints that he knows something about Taub’s wife. They then examine Brandon and test for an aneurysm that might be causing the visual agnosia. Kutner and Taub check out Brandon’s loft and don’t find any contaminants or toxins. They discuss House’s revelation and Taub insists that he doesn’t care what his wife might be doing.
When House gets word that Brandon is reluctant to take the tests, he goes to Brandon and informs him that he needs brain surgery to remove the tumor House thinks he’s suffering from. House notes that Brandon isn’t worried, which suggests he knows something and must be using drugs. House deduces that Brandon is a guinea pig: a company is paying him to test drugs. Brandon admits it’s true and he’s on three trial drugs. House figures the drugs have cleared Brandon’s system but they’ll hold Brandon overnight for observation. House returns to his office where Taub demands to know what Lucas discovered. House reveals that Taub’s wife Rachel has a separate and secret $83,000 bank account. Taub notes that it isn’t a secret bank account and he knows about it and his wife just created it for house renovations on a day he wasn’t available. House is skeptical, noting that $83,000 is a lot of renovation. Taub stands by his story but they’re interrupted when Brandon has a seizure.
The team reviews the three drugs while House continues to comment on Taub’s wife and her bank account. For the moment they put Brandon on dialysis, and Brandon worries about Heather finding out. Afterward, Thirteen realizes that Taub didn’t know about the account but he’s not concerned about it. He insists that as long as he and his wife have a happy marriage, he’s not going to worry about it.
The next morning, House comes in and Taub informs him that Brandon made it through the night without further convulsions. House is more interested in how Taub handled the matter with his wife, and Taub is furious that House is sticking his nose into his personal business. House gets into the elevator and talks to Lucas, who is in the lobby and in contact via radio. Lucas accuses House of enjoying making Taub and the others miserable. House walks down the hallway, seemingly talking to himself. Lucas questions whether House thinks Taub will be working harder or quit if his marriage falls apart.
Brandon’s throat and face swells and Foreman is forced to cut open his throat. They start him on steroids with limited effect. House is busy going over Lucas’ personnel files on his team and insists it’s the combination of trial drugs that are causing the problems: now Brandon is going through withdrawal. They need to find a better way to detox him than dialysis, and House suggests they put Brandon on the drugs again and then wean him off slowly to see which one is affecting him.
Cuddy discovers Lucas in her office going through her desk. He explains that he’s checking her out on his own and asks her out on a date. It doesn’t go well, and he offers to give her information on House in return for being able to talk to her and learn more about her. When he gives her a discount, she agrees.
Taub and Rachel are having dinner and he finally makes up a story about finding receipts from her bank account. She admits she used to have $83,000 but not any more: she was using the money to buy him a car. Taub is considerably relieved.
Thirteen is checking on Brandon, who appears to have recovered. Suddenly he grabs her and yanks her onto the bed, and she punches him in the face. They can now eliminate the drugs as the cause of the illness. As they diagnosis, Taub informs House about Rachel buying the car, and demands an apology. House apologies--sort of--and then wonders why Rachel would buy him a car. He has Taub do a scan and heads home, where he finds Lucas going through his closet. Lucas freely admits he’s trying to find something embarrassing to give to Cuddy, and wants to be honest with her. House would rather Lucas provide him with something to blackmail Cuddy with in the future, and Lucas agrees to handle both cases simultaneously.
The next day, the team finds narrowed blood vessels and Taub suggests arrhythmia of the heart caused by the drugs. House asks if Taub has been home to see his wife, and then orders electrolysis to test the vessels. As they take Brandon in for the electrolysis, he wonder about telling his wife the truth and Taub tells him that if the result causes emotional damage, it’s just selfishness. As they run the tests, Taub realizes that House is deliberately keeping him from going home, and wonders why House cares about his marriage. Brandon’s heart goes into arrhythmia and as they try to stabilize him, House notices that Brandon’s hair is growing in red.
They go back into differential and House comes up with a cardiac sympathectomy. The question is whether Brandon is stable enough to handle the surgery.
Lucas provides a photo of House as a cheerleader and shows it to Cuddy while asking her personal questions. He admits he finds her hot and smart, and notes that she must realize the photo is fake. He figures she knows it’s fake, which means she knows he’s faked the whole thing and knows it’s a game, so he doesn’t have a chance. As he leaves, he wonders why she bothered coming out of him if she knew the whole thing was a game. He figures she did it to actually be with him and sits back down.
The team explains they’ll have to sever Brandon’s heart and brain to slow down his heart, and the dangers. However, he doesn’t recognize them: he’s back to visual agnosia. House considers it irrelevant and orders the heart surgery. Taub wonders if the toxins were in his paint and absorbed into Brandon’s fat cells a year ago, and now that he’s losing weight the toxins are being released back into his bloodstream. House gives Taub an hour to prove his theory. He goes into Brandon’s room and finds Heather with her husband. Taub asks Brandon to have Heather leave so they can discuss the paintings he did and the ones he didn’t sell, and she asks for the truth. Brandon finally admits he’s only sold two paintings in the last three years and has been making money by enrolling in drug trials. He’s worried about how she sees him, and she insists she sees the real him.
As Taub goes to where Brandon hid his unsold paintings, Chase prepares to operate on Brandon. One of the portraits shows the same visual disassociation, and has a date of 5/08. He calls House and explains that they were distorted… every other month when he was on all three drugs. House realizes that Brandon was on antacid. He calls to have Chase change the surgery: he needs to remove a bezor. Fibers built up in his stomach, forming a ball and absorbing the drugs. The drugs were then released slowly back into Brandon’s system. Chase removes the drug while Taub asks Heather if she was relieved Brandon told him the truth. He wonders if she was happier before she knew or after. However, before she can answer Rachel arrives to give Taub his car. She takes him to the parking garage and he stares silently at it. Rachel wonders what’s wrong, and he tells her they need to talk.
Later, House returns home to find Lucas playing the piano. The detective explains that Cuddy didn’t buy it and he didn’t come up with anything. Lucas notes that he did research on House’s college and discovered the fake photo is real. House admits he did it because of a girl, and Lucas wonders at the fact that House wants Cuddy to see him differently, but she couldn’t even visualize House being different. Lucas jokingly offers to back off of Cuddy and let House take his shot. House picks up a guitar and the two of them start playing a Ray Charles duet. Share this article with your friends