"You wouldn't want to have lunch with the President of the United States, would you?" Jed silently entered Abbey's office.

His voice, and his appearance startled Abbey, as she looked up at him walking over to stand behind her. When he got where he wanted, he titled her chair back and leaned over to kiss his wife. "As long as my husband doesn't find out."

Jed laughed at the words that came from his wife, as he spun her chair around and pulled her up. "Then, come on."

"Now? It's only..." Abbey stopped as she looked at her watch, "It's only lunchtime."

"Which is why I asked you to lunch. After you Mrs. Bartlet." Jed held the door open for her.

"I could never say no to you." Abbey raised her eyebrows and let them fall back down as she grinned at her husband.

Making small talk at the lunch table, Jed said, "I talked to CJ today. Right before I came to find you, actually."

"Really? What'd you talk about?" Abbey asked with a lack of interest present. She knew that CJ didn't say anything, and that this was all a fishing trip on Jed's part.

"I'm glad you asked. We talked about you. Apparently she came to visit with you and the two of you shared a nice long talk."

"I suppose that it is possible that that is what happened." Abbey picked her glass up and took a drink.

"So...what'd the two of you talk about?"

"You are very direct, you know that?"

"Yes, I do know that. And that isn't an answer."

"We talked about...girl stuff, if you must know." Abbey avoided eye contact. She knew that if she made eye contact he would know the truth.

"See, I know better than that Abigail. I know you are hurting inside, and you aren't letting me help you."

"It's okay. I'm okay, Josiah." She tried to assure him.

Jed grabbed a hold of one of Abbey's hands, with both of his. He carefully stroked the inside of it. "I had a talk with Leo earlier...He told me that I have to be here for you, that I have to love you. He's right, and I am and do. But I could be here for you even more still, if you would open up to me, if you would tell me what's wrong."

Abbey broke down crying for the second time that day. Immediately, Jed shot up from his chair and walked around to the other side of the table. Once there, he pulled Abbey from her chair and held her in his arms. Rocking back and forth with her, he said, "I'm here for you, let it out."

After standing there for a few minutes, sobbing into her husband's shoulder, Abbey finally found the strength to speak. "Will anything change? If I have cancer...will things be different? What will happen with us?"

"I'd imagine that our bond would grow a hell of a lot stronger, if that is possible. But if you do, it will be fine. Look at me." Jed grabbed his wife's face into his hands. "Remember when we found out that I had MS? Remember how you were always there for me? How you wouldn't give up on me, how you stood by me? Now it's my turn to be all that for you. How'd that be?" Jed brought his head down to where their foreheads met, and he gazed into her beautiful soggy brown eyes.

"I'd like that."

"So is this what's been bothering you? You thought I wasn't gonna be there for you?"

Abbey shrugged and then looked away, "Yeah, I guess." She whispered.

"I heard that Abigail Bartlet. And how dare you. I would never dream of not being here for you. I love you too much."

"I love you." She whispered back.

"I'm sorry, I couldn't here that." Jed smiled.

"I said I love you." Abbey was still trying to avoid eye contact, but she wasn't successful. Her eyes locked down with Jed's, if only for a moment, a very intimate moment. Then she laid her head against his chest, as he pulled her body into his. They stood there in silence for another few minutes. "Didn't I say I wanted this to be a normal day?" Abbey asked nervously. "You should get back to work." She patted his chest as she lifted her head up.

Jed having found out what was troubling his First Lady, and having being successful in taking steps to put her troubles to rest, was a happy man. He knew he wasn't finished with his wife, he couldn't be until they received news of her medical condition, and hopefully it would be negative. But he was more satisfied than he was that morning. And so, when Abbey began to walk back to her office and directed him to do the same, he was able to do so. But before he was out of eyesight with her, he proclaimed, "I love you."

"Yeah, yeah. Me too. Now get out of here." Abbey smiled. She was feeling better. She took CJ's advice. She let Jed be there for her...it felt nice.

"I'm going, I'm going." Jed said as he continued to walk away from her. He was feeling better. He took Leo's advice and was there for his wife. He was glad he did, cause it made him feel better.



Under The Weather - 10


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