NOTES: See Part One, Please enjoy. :)
DISCLAIMER: They're not mine, except for Levi McClane and Dante the dog.
SUMMARY: The White House prepares to send a comprehensive, best of the best
gun control package to the hill, and they're going to do everything they can
to make sure it passes.
"Miss Hayes?" A stranger's voice exclaimed through the doorway.
Ainsley glanced up and looked into a pair of piercingly blue eyes. Not like
Sam's sharp blue eyes, but more of an icy white blue, a pair of eyes that
seemed to stare straight through all pretenses into one's soul.
"Yes. Are you Ms. McClane?" She replied. Levi paused and then came
into the room. A strand of her hair fell into her face, but she didn't
notice; she never did. Usually she had two strands loose, and they hung on
either side of her head, framing it. She liked it like that, but she wasn't
sure if anyone else did.
"Uh, never been married, but yeah, that's me." She replied as Dante
trotted up to Ainsley's desk and then immediately began his sniffing trek
around the room. He always had to explore everything.
"Well, I'm just going to go over a few things here with you. I think
there must be a typo. This says you're going to work here for $480 a month."
Ainsley said with a weak chuckle.
"That's correct." Levi pointed out as she kept an eye on Dante but
still giving Ainsley her attention.
"You're going to work here for four-hundred and eighty dollars a
month?" Ainsley repeated, quite surprised.
"That about covers my electricity and gas bills, so why the heck not?
I work here; they pay my utilities." Levi said with a nod as she glanced
around the room that was a weak semblance of an office. "You actually put up
with working down here?" She asked suddenly. Ainsley paused.
"It's the best they could do." She replied.
"Right." Levi said, pausing. "If I were you, I'd ask for an actual
office. I mean, this is . . this place has got to be hot when that thing's
"Yeah, but I've got a fan." Ainsley said weakly. Levi smiled weakly.
"Okay. If you say so." She said. "They're fixing me up with a temp
office. When I leave, I'd suggest you move into it." Ainsley paused, thinking
about why would they give this woman McClane a better office, but then she
"I'll work where they tell me to work. It's an honor to work in the
White House." She replied.
"Even *this* White House?" Levi asked.
"It's not where I envisioned myself, but it works. I've managed to
accomplish a lot around here, I believe." Ainsley replied with a smile,
remembering the moment when she asked herself the same thing.
"Well, I think that's good. I think that politics should be less about
parties and more about what's best for the people." Levi said slowly. "The
only problem is that everyone has a different idea of what's best for the
"Which is the nature of the party system." Ainsley replied with a
"So most believe." Levi replied.
"But not you?"
"No. I believe that the party system is about who's better. It should
be about who's right and who's wrong, but it's not. Not any more."
"I've never met someone who thought of it that way." Ainsley said
"I've never met someone who responded as nicely as that. Most people
just call me crazy and move on." Levi replied with a smirk. There was a
pleasant pause between them before Ainsley got back to business.
"Well, doing the math part of it, if you were to work here eight hours
a day, five days a week, at minimum wage, that would equal $42 a day, $210 a
week and $840 a month. There's a drastic difference between what they're
giving you and what's legal, so I'm afraid you're going to have to get more
than you bargained for." Ainsley said with a smile. Levi chuckled and nodded.
"Wouldn't want anyone to get in trouble." She replied. "That sounds
fine. Maybe I'll give it to charity."
"That would be nice of you." Ainsley replied as she scribbled a note
on a piece of paper and then presented the paper to Levi. "Sign there and
that's everything. Leo says that he's going to go over the press stuff with
you and CJ later today. I'm assuming that there's nothing too out of order?"
"You may assume that, but don't shoot me when something in your
opinion turns out to be out of order." Levi said as she signed the paper. "I
had a bit of legal trouble about seven years ago, and I'm seeing a therapist,
but that's about it." She informed Ainsley.
"What was the legal trouble, if I may ask?" Ainsley asked cautiously.
"Someone tried to show off with his knowledge of gun statistics. He
said some downright offensive stuff. Stupidly, I beat him up. The court
ordered me to see a therapist for two years. I liked the guy so much, I'm
still seeing him." Levi explained easily.
"You don't like guns, huh?" Ainsley asked slowly. Levi paused.
"I don't like death." She finally replied. "Guns scare me. That's why
I devote my life to limiting them, to getting them away from me and from
people like me." Ainsley nodded slowly, deciding to bite her tongue and not
get into this discussion. Levi noticed and smirked weakly. "I think I should
head back upstairs now. Talking to CJ and all that. Figure out what the heck
I'm doing here today."
"Well, you're all set." Ainsley replied. Levi smirked, whistled softly
and then headed out the door, Dante quick on her heels.
"What's this about Levi falling apart?" CJ asked as she took her seat
in Leo's office. Leo looked at her. "After the staff meeting this morning, I
went to wait in your office and the President asked you if Levi was going to
fall apart, and you assured him she wouldn't."
"You were eavesdropping?" Leo asked in shock.
"Leo, the door was open. I was waiting for you. You two were making no
attempts to speak quietly. What was I supposed to do? Plug my ears and start
singing at the top of my lungs?" CJ retorted. Leo paused.
"I wouldn't mind hearing the jackal again." He said finally. CJ
"Maybe if we pass this bill. What did you guys mean by falling apart?"
She asked again. Leo sighed and took his seat.
"A few years ago, Levi had an incident where she kind of lost it for a
few minutes, and she beat up a guy. They put her in jail for 30 days and then
the court ordered her community service and to see a therapist." Leo
explained slowly. "By falling apart, we were referring to her being able to
keep herself together in light of the people she's going to be dealing with."
"In other words, the President is worried she's going to try to beat
up the people we send her to meet with?" CJ asked after cautiously soaking
this information in. Leo paused and looked at the small dog that had trotted
into the room. Levi leaned against the doorway.
"Yeah, they're both afraid of that." She said softly. CJ stood up,
feeling slightly guilty, but not as guilty as Leo did as he got to his feet.
He didn't like talking about people behind their backs, especially people he
"Levi..." Leo started.
"Let's start this, huh? CJ, there's some stuff you have to know, and I
know you now already know some of it." Levi interrupted as she moved forward
and plopped down on Leo's couch.
"I don't know the whole of it?" CJ asked cautiously, aware that Levi
didn't seem to be phased at all.
"Well there's the legal stuff, the therapy stuff, there's the dog
stuff, there's the banter with the President, there's the brother stuff . .
." Levi started to list off, a smirk growing on her face. Leo raised his
hands and silenced her.
"All right, all right. Don't try to scare her." He said playfully. CJ
chuckled weakly, not wanting to admit that she was now a little nervous, to
say the least. Leo smirked weakly as he noticed. "It's not that bad."
"Maybe we could start with the most important." CJ suggested.
"Well, you know one of the two most important things. The legal stuff
and going to the therapist, which I still do once a week." Levi added.
"I thought the court said for two years." Leo exclaimed. Levi glanced
"I liked it." She replied simply. He smirked.
"Okay." He consented.
"What's the other most important thing?" CJ asked.
"The reason why I'm with the C.A.H. and other anti-gun lobbyists. When
I was 12, my 17-year-old brother and I snuck out of the house to go to a
party. When we came back, my father thought that we were burglars trying to
break in." Levi said slowly and almost coldly. CJ braced herself for what was
coming. She'd heard these statistics over and over again. Levi shrugged and
glanced at Dante whose tail had drooped. He moved over and snuggled into her
side as she pet him gently. "My brother was the first one in the door. My
father shot him, and the blood got all over me. It was a..." Levi stopped
and smiled weakly. "Painful thing, to say the least. Been working at it ever
"I'm sorry." CJ whispered. Levi shrugged.
"It's all right. It was thirty years ago." She replied slowly. CJ
paused and then frowned slightly.
"Just out of personal curiosity, what is it with you and the
President? Most people feel a certain, I don't know, obligation to be, you
know, respectful towards him?" CJ said. Levi smiled weakly.
"It's hard to explain. I doubt you'll be asked that question, but if
you do, just say we have an understanding." She replied.
"I wasn't asking for the press." CJ said with a smirk. Levi chuckled.
"I got that. I was just hoping you wouldn't." She replied. "The
President and I had a personal argument around seven years ago, long before
he was ever President. It was a vibrant disagreement, and it's one that has
never been completely resolved."
"Okay, that I can live with, I guess." CJ exclaimed. Levi nodded.
"I've known this guy for nearly twenty years; that one," She said as
she pointed to Leo. "For about twenty-two. I'm not here to cause trouble." CJ
"Who said you were here to cause trouble?" She asked. Levi grinned.
"Absolutely no one." She retorted.
"Do we want to go over the rest of the stuff?" CJ asked, glancing at
Leo. He nodded.
"Let's do this." He exclaimed, glad that things were going smoothly so
far. The part he was most worried about was tomorrow when Levi had her first
meeting. That was when the truth would come to light.
Bias - 4