RATING: PG
DISCLAIMER: Please see part 1
NOTES: Please see part 1
SUMMARY: Whole lot of shaking going on

"Jed, what happened?" Abbey asked as the President re-entered the room.
Rade had already headed outside for the limo that was going to take them to a
secure campus where Rade and Jed would be sharing the spotlight for another
Q&A session not unlike many of the others Jed Bartlet had done, including one
at the Newsuem in Arlington, VA which ended in gunfire more than a year ago.
"There's a man at the front desk waiting to serve Liz and Rade with
supoenas requiring them to come and testify at Eric's trial." Jed said
softly. Abbey sighed, realizing the source for the stress in her husband's
face had originated. "Charlie says that they have to sign for the supoenas
themselves."
"They can't require Rade to do it. She's under 18." Abbey whispered. Jed
shrugged and shook his head.
"I don't know. I had Charlie call the white house counsel office and
check into it. In the meantime, we have to tell them. We have to tell Rade."
He murmured. Abbey shook her head.
"No, we don't. Not yet. Jed, she's so happy right now. Let it wait until
we get back." She pleaded. Jed nodded and then beckoned to Charlie. Jed
whispered his orders and Charlie nodded before moving away to follow them.
Jed looked back at his wife and sighed.
"We knew this wasn't over, Abbey. We knew this was going to happen. It
almost happened sooner, but the technicalities got in the way and the press
complicated things." He murmured.
"I know, Jed, but we're gonna let it be for now." She repled softly.
"Come on. Let's get in the limo with Rade and the others." Jed nodded and
followed slowly, trying to remember to put on a happy face so that Rade
wouldn't be able to see that anything had gone wrong. As he got into the
limo, he heard Annie and Rade talking with his daughter.
"Mom, I was wondering. School starts again really soon and I was
wondering what's going to happen? I mean, are we going back to Virginia or
are we going to stay here? Do I still have to go to school?" Annie asked
innocently. Rade looked nervously at the members of her family and waited for
a response.When there wasn't one, she sighed.
"I'm never going back to Virginia." She said softly. Jed and Abbey
exchanged glances and then looked at their daughter. Liz sighed and rested a
tentative hand on Rade's shoulder.
"No one will make you go back." She promised. "We'll just have to find a
place to start here. Or maybe we'll go back to New Hampshire where I grew
up." She said with a weak smile. Rade smiled back and then looked at Annie.
"Is that okay with you, Annie? We need your opinion on this stuff too."
She said quietly. Truth be told, no matter what Annie wanted, she wasn't
going back, but she wouldn't stop Annie from going.
"Will I get my stuff from home?" Annie asked nervously.
"Of course. Whatever hasn't been shipped up here will be soon enough."
Rade promised. Annie smiled.
"Then sure. Can we stay with you, granddad??" Annie asked hopefully.
"For the time being." Jed promised. "Until you guys get sick of us." He
added with a weak smile. Rade looked at him and frowned. He tried to smile at
her but he knew that she'd seen the look in his eyes. For the rest of the
trip, she watched him intensely, and he found it a little uncomfortable under
her gaze. Finally when the car came to a stop, everyone got out and Jed felt
Rade on his arm.
"What's up?" Rade asked softly, looking ahead as they walked down an
aisle that was surrounded on either side by the press and dozens of kids. Jed
smiled and waved to the people.
"What do you mean?" He asked softly as they entered the building. Rade
looked at him as they were led to a room to get ready for the event.
"What did Charlie say? What's going on?" She asked again.
"I'll tell you later. I want you to concentrate on this now."
"Why, for your polling numbers? I want to know what he said."
"Rade, trust me. I will tell you right after this is over. It's not about
the polling numbers. It's about you and your sister, okay?"
"It's about my father, isn't it?" Rade asked, not giving up. Jed sighed.
"I don't want you going out on that stage upset." He insisted.
"Too late." Rade snapped.
"Yes, it's about your father, and I will tell you as soon as we get off
stage, okay? I promise." He assured her. "But I need you to concentrate on
this now, and all these people that are here to see you and me. I don't want
you to be upset at all, but I know you're going to be, so I'm trying to make
sure you don't go out there and snap at the people asking you questions.
Okay? I will tell you as soon as this is over." He finished with a promise.
"Fine. Okay." Rade said softly, nodding slowly. "I'm sorry."
"It's okay." He said and hugged her tightly. "Let's go wow those college
kids with your wit, okay?"
"Does that mean you're encouraging me?" Rade asked with a mischievous
grin. Jed groaned.
"No, it does not!" He said as she snickered and ran off towards the
doors. Jed chuckled and followed her out into the wings where they waited.
Then their names were called and they both walked out on to the stage with
applause waiting for them.

"You're incorrigible." Jed exclaimed with a laugh as they trotted off the
stage two and a half hours later. Rade smiled sweetly and shrugged.
"It runs in the family." She cooed before heading for the door where
their family was more than likely waiting for them. She opened the door and
stopped short as she found a tall man with gray hair and a tan trenchcoat
around his body waiting for them. Jed raised an eyebrow.
"Who are you?" She demanded.
"I'm Ralph Martin. Are you Mary Knox?" He asked seriously. Jed realized
who the man was and wondered what the hell had happened to security.
"No, I'm Rade Bartlet." Rade retorted sharply. "What do you want?"
"Miss Knox," The man said in a steel tone as he reached into his pocket
and withdrew a slip of paper. He handed to her. "You've been served."

TBC... .

~D.C.
Batman

 

Jury Of Your Peers - 3

 

 

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