[Open on a dark bedroom. Lue Cheng, an eight-year-old boy, is asleep. A paper mobile above the bed stirs slightly. A door creaks and Lue wakes up. He doesn’t move as he looks around. After a moment, he rolls over to face the bedroom door. There’s enough light for him to see that there’s nothing there other than his desk, bookcase, etc. Suddenly the face of a very large, old woman is in front of him. Lue gasps. The woman comes up to him and starts to strangle him.]
Lue: Who are you? What are you doing? Get out of here! Mom!
[Lue stops breathing. His mother, Lida, comes in.]
Lida: Lue? Lue? You okay? [The woman is gone. Lue gasps for air but continues to choke.] Okay, honey. Calm down. It's all right. You're just having another bad dream.
Lue: I can't breathe!
[She turns on the bedside lamp and massages him comfortingly. He clutches at his throat.]
Lida: Yes, you can. You're fine. Just relax. Just take slow, deep breaths. Nice and easy. There's nothing to be afraid of.
Lue: I'm… trying… but I can't!
Lida: Relax. Slow, deep breaths.
[His lips are blue.]
Lue: I… can't.
[Lue passes out. His mother tries to wake him up.]
Lida: Lue? Oh, my God. Lue? Lue, wake up! Wake up, Lue! Come on! Lue!
[END OF TEASER]
[Cut to Foreman intercepting House in the hospital lobby as he gets to work.]
Foreman: Been paging you for over two hours.
House: I must've been in the shower. Then I had to moisturize.
[House heads to the cafeteria. Foreman follows, talking up the case.]
Foreman: Eight-year-old boy was brought into the ER last night with acute respiratory distress. [House grabs a pack of chips.] No history of — [Foreman pauses to pull a dollar out of his pocket which he puts on the counter to pay for House’s food] — no histories of asthma or allergies, and his chest X-ray's clear.
House: Actually, I had to moisturize twice. Dominika made oysters Rockefeller last night.
Foreman: Kid's been having night terrors. Woke up in the middle of one in full respiratory arrest.
House: Stress induced panic attack. Tell the parents to lay off the grades. The world needs fry cooks too.
[They’ve reached the elevator. House pushes the “up” button.]
Foreman: Does great in school. The parents are divorced, but it was amicable. And the dad's moved out of state.
[The elevator arrives. House gets in.]
House: Have you seen Wilson around?
Foreman: The dreams are about an ugly, old hag trying to strangle him. [House turns and looks at Foreman, interested. He pushes the elevator door open with his cane.] The family's Hmong.
[Cut to Diagnostics. House enters with three large file boxes piled on a wheelchair. He puts them on the table as he talks.]
House: SUNDS — sudden unexpected nocturnal death syndrome, aka BS name for “no one's figured out why they died.” Over 100 in the early '80s. Only male. Only Hmong. Healthy right up until the moment they died in their sleep.