That evening the Bartlets and the senior staff were gathered in the dining
room for dinner. Jed and Abbey were at one end of the table and Eleanor was
at the other. Jed rubbed his foot against Abbey's leg. They linked arms to
drink their drinks. When the appetizers arrived, Abbey put some stuffed
mushroom on a fork and fed it to Jed. He still had a little on his mouth and
she kissed it off. Annie giggled. Leo grinned. Sam snickered.
Eleanor: Josiah, stop it! You're acting like a lovesick teenager. What would
the public think of you two groping each other in public?
Jed: First of all Mother, we're not in public, we're in our own dining room.
Second I don't give a damn if the public sees Abbey and I like this.
Eleanor: How could you behave like that in front of your staff and your
children and your granddaughter?
Abbey: I think the staff and the girls are used to it by now Eleanor.
Eleanor: You corrupted my son. If it weren't for you, he would have devoted
his life to God.
Leo: And had the longest homilies ever recorded.
Abbey: Eleanor why don't you just....
(Abbey collapsed. Jed caught her and eased her back into the chair. Millie
came over to her. Abbey opened her eyes.)
Jed: Are you all right?
Abbey: I'm a little dizzy. I think I need to lie down for a while.
Jed: I'll go with you.
Abbey: No stay here and enjoy dinner. Maybe if I rest a little I'll feel
Millie: I'll go with you Abbey.
(Abbey and Millie went to the residence)
Millie: Are you sure you're all right?
Abbey: I'm still dizzy and I feel kind of nauseous. My mother in law tends to
have that effect on me.
Millie: How long have you been feeling this way?
Abbey: I don't know. A while I guess. With everything going on around here, I
haven't really paid much attention. I thought it was just a flu bug. There
are days when I can't stand the sight or smell of food and then there are
days when I eat everything in sight. All this stress is causing me to gain
weight. I think I've gained ten pounds in the last few months.
Millie: Abbey, when was your last period?
Abbey: A couple months ago I guess. You think this is menopause?
Millie: Where's your black bag?
Abbey: Nightstand, second drawer.
(Millie took the bag out)
Millie: Lay down
(Millie took Abbey's temperature and listened to her heart. She moved the
stethoscope down to Abbey's stomach)
Abbey: What is it? You probably hear my stomach growling.
Millie: No. Abbey rest here I'll be back in a little while.
(Millie returned twenty minutes later with a paper bag.)
Abbey: What's that my miracle cure?
Millie: No, my diagnosis
(Millie hands the bag to Abbey who looks inside and quickly shuts the bag)
Abbey: This is a joke, right?
Millie: Abbey, you have all the symptoms. Think about it. It's possible.
Abbey: Yes it's possible but....
Millie: Go on.
(Ten minutes later Abbey came out)
Abbey: It's blue. I'm pregnant. What am I going to do Millie? I'm fifty-three
years old my youngest daughter is twenty-one years old. I have a
granddaughter who is fourteen. My husband is President of the United States
and tomorrow he's going to admit to the world he's been lying to them for
nearly three years and that he has multiple sclerosis. This is not exactly
Millie: This baby is a blessing. Remember when you found out you were
pregnant with Liz. You freaked out then too.
Abbey: Yeah, because I was an unmarried med student who had just moved to a
foreign country with a brainy klutzy economics student.
Millie: That turned out great. This will too.
Abbey: I've got to tell Jed.
(Jed walked in the bedroom)
Jed: Tell Jed what?
(Millie started to walk out of the room)
Abbey: Millie, stay, You may need to help me revive him after he has a heart
Jed: Abbey, what are you talking about?
(Abbey walked in the bathroom and came out and handed Jed the blue stick.)
Abbey: Do you know what that is?
Jed: It can't be what I think it is.
Abbey: Which is?
Jed: Abbey, are you? Are we?
(Jed was speechless)
Abbey: Mark this day in the history books. Josiah Bartlet is speechless.
(Abbey kissed him)
Abbey: We're going to have a baby.
Note: I just thought of a new angle for this story so bear with me.
The next morning Jed & Abbey went to the hospital for an ultrasound. The
doctor confirmed that she was four and a half months pregnant. The First
Couple was in for another shock when the ultrasound revealed she was having
twins. Meanwhile back at the White House the senior staff was searching for
Josh: Where could he be? We're hours away from the biggest speech of his life
and he disappears.
Leo: Maybe he just needed some time to think.
Toby: He's had the first half of his administration to think about this.
Leo: I'm sure he'll be here.
(Jed walked in) Jed: Morning one and all.
Toby: With all due respect, where the hell have you been Sir?
Jed: I had some things to take care of this morning.
Josh: What could be more important than this speech?
Jed: There will come a day in your life Josh when you won't have to ask me
Sam: I think we ought to go over the speech Mr. President.
Jed: I don't want any prepared speech. This isn't political. It's personal.
Now if you will all excuse me I need to talk to my family.
Leo: Thank you Mr. President.
(Leo led them out. Jed went back to the residence Abbey and the girls were
Jed: Where's my mother?
Abbey: Taking a nap.
Jed: Perfect. Girls, your mother and I have an announcement. It will probably
shock all of you.
Liz: Are you sick again Dad?
Jed: No, go ahead Abbey.
Abbey: I'm four and a half months pregnant with twins.
(The girls are stunned)
I got on a roll writing this today so here goes. Forgive me if I skip over
some political details, they are not important to the story.
CJ was at her morning press briefing taking questions.
Danny: Why were the President and First Lady at GW this morning?
CJ: I don't know Danny. Maybe the President was there for a checkup.
Danny: He gets those done at Bethesda. And I don't think he has doctors in
the obstetrics and gynecology department. Why isn't there a copy of tonight's
address in our packet?
CJ: Because there isn't a prepared speech for tonight. The President put the
speech together himself and he has not shown it to us yet.
(After the briefing, CJ went to the Oval Office.)
Jed: What's doin Claudia Jean?
CJ: Got a minute.
CJ: I got a question at this morning's briefing that I think you should be
Jed: About tonight's address?
CJ: No about you and the First Lady being at GW this morning in the
gynecology wing. Is there anything I should know about? Is the First Lady
Jed: Who asked the question?
Jed: Damn! Okay, CJ what I tell you goes no further than us until I let you
CJ: Yes Sir.
Jed: Abbey's pregnant.
Jed: Yes really. She's four and a half months pregnant with twins.
CJ: Wow. Congratulations. How is she feeling?
Jed: Tired, fat, achy. Remember this is our secret for now.
Jed made his announcement that night. As expected the reaction was mixed.
Some in Congress were calling for his impeachment because of his failure to
disclose the information during the campaign. It was debated on all the news
talk shows. Jed received many letters of support from those afflicted with
MS. A week later Jed and Abbey appeared on TV again to tell the world they
were having twins. Again the reaction was mixed. Jed's mother was not happy
at all and refused to talk to them Jed and Abbey discovered a few weeks later
that the twins were a boy and a girl. Almost immediately they began receiving
gifts from all over the world. The staff bought things for the twins. Jed did
some shopping of his own. Abbey rolled her eyes at some of the things he
Abbey: An antique rocking horse? What's going to happen to it when they start
walking and try to climb on it?
(Also began the Great Name debate)
Jed: How about Josiah Jr.
Abbey: One Jed Bartlet is enough for the world, don't you think? How about
Jed: No. I don't want Hoynes thinking we named the baby after him. I think we
should name our daughter Abigail.
Abbey: That's sweet pumpkin, but I want our children to have their own
identities and not have to worry about living in the shadow of someone
(They continued playing the Name Game for months. When Abbey was eight months
pregnant. Jed laid down in bed one night to talk to her.)
Jed: Abbey, we need to talk about my thing. It's almost time for me to
decide if I'm going to run again. Do you want me to run again?
Abbey: It's never been a question of what I wanted. It's a question of what
is best for you and your health.
Jed: I haven't had an attack in a while. It will be different with this
campaign. The American people know about the MS. There aren't anymore
(Abbey put her hand on her stomach)
Abbey: Let's concentrate on the twins for the time being. After they are born
and things calm down we'll go to Manchester and have your doctors look at
you. Then we'll decide, okay?
(Jed laid his head on her stomach)
Jed: Hello in there. It's your Daddy. In a couple more weeks, we'll finally
be able to meet. You have a wonderful mother, three great sisters, and a
niece who can't wait to see you.
(Jed felt a kick)
Jed: They heard me!
(The phone rang and Abbey picked it up)
Abbey: Hello, Kevin, what happened? How is she? Where? When? What hospital?
Was Annie? Thank God. Yes, of course. We'll be there as soon as we can. Tell
her to hang on. Tell Liz and Annie we love them. We'll call you from the
(Tears were streaming down Abbey's face as she hung up)
Jed: What's wrong?
Abbey: Liz was in a car accident. It's bad Jed. We have to go to Manchester
Jed: What about Annie?
Abbey: She's okay. She was not with Liz. Call Ellie and Zoey and have them
meet us at the plane. I'll pack our things.
Warning: Tissue alert!!!!
Twenty-five minutes later the Bartlets were on Air Force One headed to New
Hampshire. They called the hospital and talked to the doctor who told them
her condition was grave. They tried to comfort a devastated Annie but there
were no words that were adequate. Two and a half-hours after receiving the
phone call, they arrived at Manchester Memorial Hospital. Annie clung to her
Abbey: It's okay now. Annie. We're here.
Annie: Mom waited for you.
(The Bartlets walked to Liz's room. Abbey was trying to stay in doctor mode
but when she walked in the ICU and saw her daughter lying there, bruised,
broken and dying, she burst into tears. Liz opened her eyes)
Liz: (weakly) Mom, don't get so upset. You don't want those babies coming
(Abbey leaned down and kissed her daughter)
Abbey: You will always be my baby.
Liz: I need you to do something for me.
Liz: Promise me you'll take care of Annie.
Abbey: (tearfully) Of course we will.
Liz: I know you'll do as good of a job with her as you did with me.
(With great effort, Liz lifted her hand and put it on Abbey's stomach)
Liz: Hi guys, this is your sister Lizzie. I'm sorry we won't get a chance to
meet. You're getting the best mom and dad in the world.
(Jed stepped closer to the bed. Tears were streaming down his face.)
Jed: We have the best daughter in the world.
Liz: I love you Daddy.
Jed: I love you too Baby.
(Jed kissed his daughter. Liz looked at Annie)
Liz: You are the best thing that ever happened to me. Don't ever forget that.
I will always be with you, watching over you. Make me proud.
Annie: (sobbing) I will. I love you Mom.
Liz: Remember that book I used to read to you when you were a little girl.
I'll love you forever, I'll like you for always, as long as I'm living, my
baby you'll be.
Annie: You'll always be my mom. Forever.
(Annie gently hugged her mother. Liz looked at her sisters)
Liz: Watch out for Annie for me. Teach her all the good stuff about boys and
makeup. Take her shopping for a prom dress. Don't let Dad lecture her too
Zoey: We'll be as good of big sisters to her as you were for us. We love
Ellie: Love you Sis.
(A priest walked in)
Jed: Father Reilly, thank you for coming.
(The old priest looked sadly at his friends. He had married Jed and Abbey. He
had baptized their children and granddaughter. He had attended the
Inauguration. Now he was there to administer last rites to their child. The
Bartlets stood silently as Fr. Reilly blessed Liz and anointed her. After he
was done, Liz looked at her family. She was losing strength quickly)
Liz: Remember when we were little and every night before we went to sleep, we
would pray? Mom would you sing the Hail Mary for me?
(Abbey tearfully nodded. Everyone joined hands and Abbey sang)
Abbey: Hail Mary, full of grace, the Lord is with you. Blessed are you among
women and blessed is the fruit of your womb, Jesus. Holy Mary, mother of God,
pray for us sinners now and at the hour of death Amen.
(Liz looked around the room at her family one last time. Then she closed her
eyes and she was gone.)
The room was silent except for the sound of the heart monitor flat-lining. A
nurse came in and turned it off and walked out of the room. The Bartlets
wordlessly gathered together and hugged. Finally Jed broke the silence.
Jed: It's been a long night. Why don't you all go back to the house and get
(Everyone hugged Jed and Abbey and walked out.)
Jed: Abbey, you ought to go with them. You need your rest.
Abbey: So do you.
(The Bartlets sat on either side of the bed. Abbey glanced toward the doorway
where two men waited with a gurney. She was a doctor. She had dealt with
death many times in her profession. To the people in the morgue, it didn't
matter that this was the daughter of the President of the United States. It
didn't matter that Abbey was a successful doctor who had worked at this very
hospital. They couldn't afford to get personally involved. Abbey understood
but it didn't make it easier. This was her baby they were going to take, a
child she had carried for nine months and given birth to just as she would
soon give birth to two new lives. She looked at her husband.)
Abbey: We have to go now. They're here to take her.
Jed: I don't want to let her go.
Abbey: She's let go. Now it our turn.
(Jed slowly stood up. He gave his daughter one last kiss and followed Abbey
into the hallway. They were surprised to see Jed's mother waiting for them.
She was crying.)
Eleanor: Father Reilly called me. I'm so sorry Josiah.
(She hugged Jed.)
Jed: My little girl's gone.
Eleanor: I am so sorry about what I said when I was in Washington. I was an
old fool. I know I wasn't always the best grandmother but I loved Elizabeth.
I love all my grandchildren.
(Eleanor hugged Abbey)
Eleanor: I am so sorry.
Abbey: All is forgotten. I think we need all the family we can get tonight.
Jed: Come back to the house with us.
(They went back to the farmhouse. It was nearly dawn. Millie, Charlie, Leo
and Mallory were there. Jed hugged Leo)
Jed: Thank you for coming.
Leo: The others will be here later on today.
Millie: Abbey, you need to rest.
Abbey: All right. I just want to check on Annie first.
(Abbey walked upstairs. Leo followed Jed into the study. Jed picked up a
picture from his desk. It was of Liz as a baby.)
Jed: My baby's gone Leo. I don't know what I'm going to do.
Leo: You'll be strong for Abbey and the girls and Annie.
Jed: It's not supposed to happen this way. A father's not supposed to outlive
his children. Look at me. I've cheated death many times over between the MS
and getting shot. Why did God take my little girl? It's just not fair.
Leo: Where is it written in the Bible that God is fair?
(Jed took a rosary from his pocket)
Jed: Would you mind? I just need some time to myself.
(Leo hugged him)
Leo: Let me know if you need anything.
(Leo walked into the living room. Mallory was looking at the dozens of
pictures that were on the bookcase.)
Mallory: I can't believe she's gone Dad. Liz and I grew up together. How can
she just be gone?
(Leo hugged Mallory)
Leo: I don't know Mall. She was a wonderful person.
(Millie and Ellie came in)
Millie: Ellie, you need to get some sleep.
Ellie: I can't. It all seems like a dream. I feel like I'm going to wake up
and realize it was all an awful nightmare.
Millie: I wish it were Honey.
(Abbey came down the stairs.)
Millie: Abbey, you're supposed to be sleeping.
Abbey: Where's Jed?
Leo: In the study.
Abbey: Get him please. My water just broke.