Disclaimer: The West Wing and its characters are the propery of Aaron Sorkin, Warner Brothers, and NBC. No copyright infringement is intended.
The title of this story comes from the Phil Collins song "Against All Odds", which is the property of Phil Collins and his record label. No copyright infringement is intended there either.
Author's Note: This story is a prequel to "Let Me Let Go" If you are a fan of the CJ/Danny relationship then I suggest that you hit delete now.
Summary: The beginnings of Toby and CJ's relationship
Thanks to AJ for reading this and coming up with some of the ideas in this story. Your help has been invaluable
It has often been said that it is best not to ruin a friendship. Toby thought as he watched CJ do the afternoon press briefing. But, he wondered if friendship was all there was between the two of them. He had always had feelings for her, but had worked so hard to surpress them. Especially with all she had gone through in the last year. She had needed a friend, and he had been there for her. Lately he had been wondering if there was something more developing.
"Toby," he heard her say from the door to his office, "may I come in?"
He had been so absorbed in his thoughts that he had not realized that the briefing had ended. "Yeah, come in." He told her.
CJ came into the office, and sat down on the couch.
"You did well with the questions on the situation in Egypt." He told her.
"Thanks, I think I got the point across. That the death of the Egyptian president would not effect the Middle East policy of this administration. Even if someone didnít think I understood the points."
"I stand corrected."
"Yes, you do."
They sat in a comfortable silence before either of them spoke again.
"You seemed a million miles away when I came in here a few minutes ago. Whatís going on?"
Toby thought for a moment about how to best answer her question. Finally he decided to tell her a partial truth.
"You really donít want to know." He answered.
"Okay, that was a very cryptic answer."
"It was meant to be. Listen, why donít I come by your apartment later, and weíll talk about it?"
"Okay." CJ said as she got up and left his office.
As Toby watched her leave, he decided he would tell her what he had been thinking. If she turned him down, then hopefully they would be able to remain friends. But he hoped she wouldnít.
CJ got home around seven that night. She and Toby had walked to their cars together. He had told her that he would be at her apartment around 8 or 8:30. She wondered what was going on. In the year since Danny Concannon had stormed out of her life, Toby had been a very good friend. In the last few months, she had wondered if her feelings for him were starting to develop beyond friendship. She pushed that thought to the back of her mind, as she always did. She did not want to ruin a friendship by confessing feelings she was certain were not returned. Her doorbell rang, and she went to answer it.
"Hello, come in." She said to Toby as she let him in.
"Thank you." He replied quietly.
ĎGreat,í she thought, Ďhe always gets that quiet voice when it is something important.í
Toby walked over to her couch, and sat down. She sat on the love seat opposite the couch.
"CJ, you were right when you said I was a million miles away when you came into my office."
He noticed that she was about to interrupt him. "Please just let me say this without any interruptions." He told her.
"Okay, in the last year, you and I have become closer. In fact, I would consider you one of my closest friends." Toby paused a moment before continuing. "I often wonder if there is more than friendship here."
"Toby.." CJ said softly.
"No, let me finish. I certainly don't want to ruin our friendship. But, I would like to see if there is more. Okay, thatís what I came to say. Iíll leave now, before you kick me out."
"No, you are not going anywhere. I think I should have something to say about this."
"Youíre right we have gotten closer in the last year. And I consider you one of my closest friends."
"Like you, I too have wondered if there is more than friendship here. In fact, on my side, I think there is , and I would like to see where that could take us."
"So would I."
"Okay, then we are agreed that there is more than friendship between us?"
"Yes" Toby said as he moved to sit next to her.
"What are we going to do about that?" She asked, turning to him with a smile.
"I think we should find out where these feelings will take us."
"So do I." She replied.
Toby searched her eyes for a moment. He leaned closer to her, she closed her eyes. He kissed her lightly on the lips.
"That was taking things too fast, was it?" Toby asked after ending the kiss.
"No." CJ laughed.
"Have you had dinner yet?" CJ asked.
"I have some leftover chicken and rice in the refrigerator, would you like to have some?"
"I guess we are having our first date."
"No this is dinner, not a date."
"What would the difference be?"
"A date involves doing out. Maybe for dinner."
"Would you like to do that?"
"Thursday would be good I think."
"Then we are going out on our first date on Thursday."
"Yes." She said with a smile.
On Thursday, they went to an Italian restaurant in Georgetown. CJ couldnít remember when she had a better time.
"Would you like to come up for a minute?" CJ asked as Toby pulled the car up to her apartment building.
"I had a nice time tonight." She said after they had gone inside the apartment.
"So did I." He replied.
"Are we planning on doing this again?" She asked in a quiet voice.
"I think so."
"Then we need to talk about some things."
"Like what?" He asked.
"Whether or not we are going to let the others know that things are changing between us."
"I donít think that would be a good idea right now. Do you?"
"No, we donít know what is going to happen. If things blow up then we can handle it ourselves without any outside interference."
"Thatís also what Iím thinking."
"I should probably be going now." Toby said.
"Okay, then I guess Iíll see you tomorrow."
When he reached the door CJ said. "Arenít you forgetting something?"
"What?" He asked.
"I was thinking that since we are officially dating... I mean we are officially dating right? Oh, what Iím trying to say is..."
"CJ..." Toby said as he stepped closer to her.
"What?" She asked.
"Is this what you are asking about?" He said as he put his arms around her and kissed her.
"Yeah, thatís what I was asking about." She murmured.
"Good." He said and then kissed her again.
"Good night, Toby."
to be continued...