Disclaimers: The West Wing and it's characters are the property of Aaron Sorkin, Warner Brothers and NBC. No copyright infringement is intended. No profit is being made from this.

 

Author's Notes: I guess this could be considered an alternate universe story. Oh, and "For Appearances Sake" can be considered a part of this timeline.


CJ woke up and stretched her arm across the bed to pull Toby closer to her. She realized that the other side of the bed was empty. It was then that she realized she was in her own apartment, not at Toby's. She finally realized that it was the ringing of the phone that had awakened her. She reached to answer it.

"Hello." She said sleepily.

"CJ." Toby said.

"Toby do you know what time it is over here?" CJ said. She picked up her glasses and looked at the clock. "It's two in the morning."

"I'm sorry."

"No you're not."

"That's true. I didn't know if I would have a chance to talk to you later."

"So you decided to wake me up?"

"I thought I would take the chance."

"It's a good thing I hadn't been asleep very long, because I was waiting on you to call."

"I have to go now."

"Okay."

"I love you."

"Love you too." CJ said as she hung up the phone.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

CJ walked into her office the next morning. For some reason she had not been able to sleep after Toby called her.

''What's on the agenda today?" She asked Carol.

"You have the normal briefings at nine, one and five. The sex education report from last year is on your desk again."

"The sex ed report?"

"It's going to Congress."

"Yeah we were supposed to revisit that after the Midterms. Okay, anything else."

"At the moment no."

"But that's open to change?"

"Yes, it is."

"Okay, when you have the wires..."

"Already on your desk."

"Thanks."

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

It was midmorning before CJ had the chance to look at the sex ed report. She still remembered most of what was contained in its pages, but she did need to refresh her memory to be able to brief the press about it.

She smiled as she remembered what she had said to Josh a year earlier. Then she would have had no problem passing an abstinence class. That was certainly untrue now.

********************************************************************

She looked up and watched him leave. There was one thing that was crystal clear to her at that moment, he confused her. He didn't just confuse her, he confused the hell out of her. She looked back down at the book resting on her lap. She had to finish reading the report that night. She had no time to think of Toby Ziegler and how much he confused her.

Three hours later, she was finished with the report. She had managed not to think of Toby as she was reading. Now that she was finished with the report thoughts of Toby crept back into her mind. She had known him for years. He was one of the few people she knew she could always count on. He could say the most biting things to her in one minute, and then be the nicest person she had ever known in the next. In truth she didn't pay any attention to what he said. She knew better than to take any of those things very seriously.

As she started to drive home, Toby still weighed heavily on her mind. She wondered why he had asked if she would be okay by herself? It made very little sense to her. He had never asked anything like that. She wondered what had made him ask it. Someone her car found it's way to his apartment. She looked up, and saw there was still a light on. She decided to go and try to talk to him.

"CJ?" Toby said when he opened the door and saw her standing there.

"Hi. May I come in?"

"Yeah, what are you doing here?"

"I honestly don't know."

"CJ..."

"Toby I really have no idea why I'm here."

"Okay." Toby said dismissively.

"Why did you do that today?"

"Could you be a little more specific, cause I have no clue what you are talking about?"

"You asked if I would be okay by myself. What gave you the idea that I wouldn't be?"

Toby turned back towards the window. He couldn't look at her as he spoke. "You looked a little upset today. I was just wondering if you were okay."

"I'm fine."

"You are?"

"Yes." CJ watched him closely as he spoke. She noticed that he couldn't look at her. He had done this a couple of times before, but that had been years ago.

"I just don't like to see you upset." Toby said slowly.

It was then that CJ came to a realization. Toby had feelings for her, strong feelings. He would likely never admit it to her, but it was true. She didn't know how she felt about that. Part of her wished he would admit it. If he did she would be forced to examine how she felt about him. She walked over to him and laid her hand on his arm.

"I'm going to go now." CJ said softly. "I'll see you tomorrow."

"Yeah." Toby said not turning around to look at her. "Funding for public
television."

"Oh, joy." CJ said sarcastically.

"It won't be that bad." Toby said. CJ could hear the laughter in his voice..

"If you say so. Good night Toby."

"Good night CJ."

With that she left, leaving Toby to wonder why she had even come at all, and if his feelings were that apparent.

*************************************************************

CJ sighed and looked back at the book on her desk. It was strange that the report had played such a pivotal role in her life. She looked towards the TV. She could tell by the change in the music that there was going to be a special report. She couldn't believe what she saw. She quickly went to Leo's office for more information.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

An hour later, CJ blinked as the lights of the cameras assaulted her. It was times like this, when she was barely hanging onto her composure, that she wished she could ban the cameras from the Press Room. She took a deep breath and mounted the podium.

"Good evening. I'm certain most of you are aware that shots were fired at Israeli Prime Minister Baruch and President Barlet as they were leaving the Middle East Peace Conference in Egypt. Both Prime Minister Baruch and President Barlet were unhurt. However several of their aides were hit, including Communications Director Toby Ziegler. We will have more on Mr. Ziegler's condition as it becomes available. We do know that his injuries are very serious and he has been airlifted to a hospital in Tel Aviv. Once he is stabilized he will be air lifted to Ramstein Air Force Base in Germany. That is all for now. There will be no questions taken." CJ quickly fled from the podium as the press shouted her name.

Appearances Can be Deceiving - 2

 

 

 

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