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. The song "The Fool" is the property of Leann Womack and Decca Records. No copyright infringement is intended with this either.
Summary: CJ realizes she has feelings for Toby, and has a conversation with Congresswoman Wyatt about it.
Author's Note: I would like to think AJ for the idea and for letting me write it.
Love is not something we choose. It is just something that happens. We can't control when it happens, if it happens, or who we fall in love with. If we could I don't believe most people would fall in love. Or at least I know I wouldn't have. I have never been able to do things the easy way. I couldn't fall in love with the man who actually pays attention to me. Who follows me around like a lost puppy, and would probably do anything in the world for me. No, I have to fall in love with someone else. The most difficult person I know. Life with him would not be easy, in fact it would probably be very difficult. But most things in life worth having are difficult. I think he would be worth the trouble, no I know he would be worth it. The problem is he is still in love with his ex-wife and I know it. There is no other reasonable conclusion, he still wears his wedding ring.
I really don't know when I fell in love with him. It just happened over time. I was not conscious of it as it was happening. One day I was sitting next to him at a staff meeting, and I realized I was in love with him. Quite frankly, it scared me to death. It was unexpected. If I had to pick one of my coworkers to fall in love with, Toby would have probably been the last one I would have picked. But it has happened, and I have no idea what the hell to do about it. I've had this dilemma for months, and I'm no closer to a solution today than I was the day I realized my feelings.
I find myself in a restaurant one night, having dinner with an old friend from California when Congresswoman Wyatt walks into the restaurant. She is alone that night, and I decide to talk to her for a moment. I don't know why I do this, maybe it had something to do with the song playing at that moment.
You don't know me but I know who you are
If you've got a minute I'll buy you a drink
I know love is a fragile thing
Just one more thing before I go
I'm the fool in love with the fool
"Congresswoman Wyatt, may I speak with you for a moment?" I ask her.
"Certainly CJ. Sit down." She says.
"How are you?" She asks
"Fine, and you?" I reply
I really don't know why I've done this, but I have so I guess I should just tell her what is on my mind. "I wanted to speak with you about Toby." I say, and I can't believe that I have just said that.
"Okay, what about him?"
"You know that he is still in love with you?"
"CJ there is nothing I can do about that."
"You could tell him that it is time to let go."
"I have. It does worry me that he has not let go. That he has not taken off his wedding band. You know I tell myself that when he is ready he will. That he has not met anyone yet, but then again maybe he has and doesn't know it yet." She said.
"What do you mean?" I ask.
"You're in love with him, aren't you?"
"Yeah." I answer unable to deny it once someone has confronted me with the truth.
"Give him time, he'll come around. I'm certain of it."
"Maybe." I say.
"I should go. Have a nice evening, Congresswoman."
"You too, CJ."
And so I move to leave the restaurant. As I'm putting my coat on I look back to her table, and I am shocked by what I see. Toby is there. Somehow he came into the restaurant without my knowledge. I stand and watch. I see him lift Andie's hand to his lips, and I can't bear to watch anymore. I quickly leave and stand outside waiting for a taxi for a few minutes. As I'm getting into the cab, someone gets in with me. I turn angrily and see that the person is Toby.
"What the hell do you think you are doing?" I demanded.
"Taking you home."
"What? I wasn't here with you, so again what the hell are you doing."
He doesn't say anything he just looks at me and lays his hands against his legs for a moment, and it is then that I notice it. The wedding ring is gone!
"I thought it was time I took it off." He says.
"I see that."
"I overheard some of your and Andie's conversation." Toby remarks.
"Yes, is it true?"
"Is what true?"
"Are you in love with me?"
"Yes." I whisper after a moment, and I can't look at him as I speak. He places his hand under my chin and turns my face to him, and then he does something that I find quite unexpected. He kisses me. I don't care why he is doing it. I'm just glad he is. It is a very gentle kiss at first and then I deepened it.
"We need to talk." He says.
"Yes." I agree and then I finally look at him. As I take his hand in mine, I see something in his eyes that makes me wonder if my feelings are returned. I hope that they are.