Okay, this is a serious one and deals with the sensitive topic of sexual harassment. You have been warned.
Disclaimer: These characters do not belong to me and no copyright infringement is intended.
Rating: R, for serious themes and some bad language
Synopsis: A new Senator is perfect - or is he?
Victim of Power
"Have I been perfectly clear about how much I don't want to go to this meeting?" Toby asked Josh, as they walked to the Mural Room.
"And have I been perfectly clear about how much I really don't think that Senator Fairbairn is the greatest thing that ever happened to the Democratic Party?"
"I'm just making sure."
"I happen to agree with you on the last point, though."
"Yeah. Fairbairn isn't the greatest thing to happen to the Democratic Party. Bartlett is." Josh said, with a smile. "Fairbairn comes a close second, though."
Steve Fairbairn was standing in the Mural Room, admiring the decor. He was a tall, handsome man in his forties, his hair a becoming silvery grey. He was photogenic, telegenic, witty, charming and intelligent. The Democratic Party was in love with their new Senator from Pennsylvania. He was a widower, with two sons who were, respectively, football and basketball stars for their college teams and he came from a solidly middle class family.
Toby barely glanced at him. He had eyes only for the woman who had come with Fairbairn. Andi.
"Mr. Lyman." Fairbairn came forward and took Josh's hand in a firm grip.
"It's Josh." Josh replied. "We tend to be pretty informal in meetings. Have you met Toby Ziegler?"
"No. It's a pleasure to meet you, Mr. Ziegler... Toby. I was impressed by your work on bill 906 last session."
"Thank you." Toby said nicely.
"I've asked Congresswoman Wyatt to join me with this issue. She's got a lot of good ideas and she agreed to help me find my way around."
"Hi, Andrea." Josh smiled at her.
Fairbairn looked slightly uncomfortable when Andrea said nothing to Toby and he said nothing to her.
"Andrea, have you met Mr. Ziegler?" He asked her in a low tone.
"Yes." Andrea nodded. "We've met."
"It's a pleasure to see you again, Andrea." Toby said, with a preternaturally solemn look on his face. She raised her brows and bit her lip to keep from laughing. She knew that look; he was trying not to make a wisecrack at the poor Senator's expense.
"Let's get down to work, shall we?" Josh said pleasantly.
The meeting was fairly productive. Fairbairn listened attentively to the bewildering flow of information and asked intelligent questions.
Josh was practically spinning in his chair with glee. This guy was the perfect point man for the Medicare fight. With the House so fractious, they needed a new face and Fairbairn had just the right face for it.
"So what did you think? Is this guy great or what?" Josh asked Toby as they packed up their papers after Fairbairn and his entourage left the room.
"He's too perfect." Toby said thoughtfully. "Nobody is that good."
"No, you're not. And neither is he."
"So what's the problem with him? We learned our lesson with Sam's old college buddy and we checked him out thoroughly. He's the real thing, Toby."
"There's something about him I don't like."
"Probably the way he was looking at Andrea." Josh grinned. "Face it, my friend, you're jealous."
"Why would I be jealous?"
"Let's see. He's taller than you, younger than you, richer than you and has more hair than you do."
"My height, age, financial status and hair or lack thereof has never mattered to Andrea." Toby said stiffly.
"Toby, may I talk to you for a moment?" Andrea was waiting for him in the hallway. Fairbairn was waiting for her, having stopped to exchange pleasantries with Sam.
With a glance at Fairbairn, Andi pulled Toby to the middle of the corridor.
"Kiss me." She demanded.
"Kiss me." She repeated, wrapping her arms around his neck.
"Andi..." The rest of what he was about to say was lost as Andi locked her lips with his.
It didn't matter to Toby that they were in the middle of a very active hallway. It didn't matter that he and Andi were divorced. It didn't matter that he had no idea why Andi wanted this. All that mattered was that she did.
She felt wonderful in his arms. He had one hand holding her to him, his other hand tangling in her hair, dislodging the pins that held it up. It had been so long since he had kissed her; she tasted so sweet.
It seemed an eternity before he finally heard Sam's increasingly louder throat clearings.
"Toby..." Sam's voice finally broke through and he lifted his head. Andi looked as dazed as he felt. She eased her way out of his arms and smiled tremulously at him.
"I'll explain later. I have to go." Andi whispered. She turned and left.
-- Adrienne email@example.com