CJ having had a press briefing to do just a few minutes after she left the President, had to put his request off for a little bit of time. Eventually, though, she got around to it. Knocking on Abbey's door, CJ heard a few sniffles, and then an "Enter." Come from Abbey.

Stepping into the room, CJ saw the First Ladies' damp cheeks, her red puffy eyes. And even though Abbey tried to stop them, CJ saw the tears falling from her eyes.

"Abbey...?" CJ hesitated as she took in the sight in front of her.

Abbey withdrew a tissue from the box sitting on her desk, drying her face off, Abbey asked, "Is there something I can do for you, CJ?"

"No, but if there is something I can do for you..." CJ began to pry, just as she was asked to.

"Can you make the last two days' events disappear? Can you make this. . .this thing...disappear?"

"Abbey..." CJ was at a loss for words.

"It's okay. I know the answer to both of them. So he sent you in here, to check up on me, didn't he?"

"Yes, ma'am. But truth be known, I was planning on coming by to check on you anyway."

"Why is this happening to me, CJ?" The tears that Abbey had managed to choke back began to flood her cheeks. "Why me? It's gotta be some mistake." Abbey spun around in her chair to where she was no longer facing her husband's press secretary. "Jed...he's so worried about me. I know he is, that's why he sent you. It's killing him that he can't do anything for me. . .Frankly, it's killing me that I can't let him do anything for me."

"You can let him be there for you. Let him love you, and take care of you." Abbey spun halfway back.

"What other kind of wise wisdom do you have for me?" Abbey gave a nervous smile as she tried to laugh.

CJ and Abbey talked for the better half of the hour. Abbey had calmed down dramatically, even stopped crying. The two women had talked about life in general, they talked about...well, just about anything and everything that bore no real relevance to the past two days.

As a knock came at the door, CJ finally looked at her watch and realized that she had a meeting she was supposed to go to, so she quietly excused herself from the room as Abbey's secretary entered.

Once her meeting with a new reporter that had just had received her press credentials was over, CJ looked at her clock. She noted that it had been a good three hours since she had been asked to see the First Lady. Then her phone began to ring. When she hung up, she asked herself, "Why does it seem like I've been given detention?"

"Mr. President..." CJ popped her head into the office.

Jed looked up from some paper. For the last hour he had been staring at the first sentence. He couldn't get past that first sentence. There wasn't anything about it, he just had way to much else on his mind. "CJ!" Jed proclaimed as if her appearance had been the highlight of his day. "Did you talk to her? Did she tell you?"

"I spoke with the First Lady, yes."

"And...? Don't keep me waiting."

"And...you were right, she wasn't feeling that great."

"Do you know what it's about? Is there anything I can do for her?"

"Sir, your wife was feeling a little...perplexed by the recent changes in her life. She just needed someone to talk to. Woman to woman."

"I think you're lying to me. You wouldn't be keeping anything from me, would you? Cause you know, I can find out about it."


Jed caught the tone of voice she used to say that. At that moment he realized that there was indeed something wrong with his wife, emotionally. Furthermore, he realized that Abbey directed CJ not to tell him what it was that was said. "Okay." Jed said as he turned back to face the paper, and the second sentence. CJ had gotten to the door, "Thank you, CJ. I really appreciate it."

"It's not a problem, sir. I'm glad I was able to help."



Under The Weather - 9


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