Disclaimers: They're not mine. Sometimes I ask them out to play,
but they go home with Mr. Sorkin, et. al.
Spoilers: A little "Galileo"
Archive: Sure, let me know where and keep my name attached.
Note: Ultimately, it's all Stacy's fault...

Ton of Bricks (1/1)

Toby stood in front of the mirror, trying to get his bow tie straight
when two long arms reached around him from behind and yanked it in to

"Thank you," he said, turning around. He let out a low whistle. "I
love that dress."

CJ looked down. It was red and off the shoulder. "I'm going to

"You can wear my jacket," he offered.

"Somehow I think the matching wrap would be less controversial." She
kissed him lightly. "I'll wear your jacket on the way home if it
will make you feel better."

He almost smiled. "I don't want to go," he said.

"You never do. Come on. It's only one evening," she said.

"I'd rather spend it here with you," he said, wrapping his arms
around her.

"Wrinkle my dress and you won't spend an evening with me for a
week." He immediately released her. "Patience is a virtue. Come
on. We'll be late."

CJ and Toby had been dating for months. Ever since the shooting,
really. Although it hadn't much resembled dating through the
summer. Some time in the fall, something had changed. Toby'd almost
blown it at Thanksgiving by not inviting her for dinner. In all
honesty, he hadn't known what to do about Sam and Josh. It turned
out that they were both so busy watching football, they hadn't even
noticed when Toby and CJ had disappeared into the kitchen for some
time together.

They were often paired up at official functions, so it wasn't a
surprise that they were seated by each other at the dinner that
night. It was a banquet in honor of some milestone birthday for the
ambassador from France. Somehow, it had fallen on to the President's
schedule. No one seemed quite sure why, but the senior staff was
also attending as were several other government officials.

CJ and Toby were careful to remain a respectable distance at all

CJ was speaking to a pair of midwestern congressmen. Toby was at the
bar when he heard the increased buzz moving towards him. That could
only mean one thing. President Bartlet was closing in.

"Toby!" Jed Bartlet exclaimed. "How you doing?"

"Fine, Mr. President. Are you enjoying yourself?"

"Absolutely! People, clear off. I'm just getting a drink here."
People started to disperse. Toby could see CJ approaching and then
saw her freeze as she looked at the President. Standing just to his
left was Tad Whitney. "Toby? Have you met Tad Whitney?" President
Bartlet asked. "He interviewed for a position on staff a while
back. He was just telling me about it."

"Was he, Sir?" Toby glanced at Tad, who seemed a little too smug for
Toby's liking.

"He has an opinion on why he was passed over," the President

"I'm sure he does, Sir."

"Yes. And he's not very happy."

Toby grimaced. "I wouldn't think so, Sir."

"What are we going to do about that?"

Toby now looked at Tad, who smiled broadly and leaned back on his
heels. Bastard, he thinks he's won, Toby thought. He put down his
scotch, hauled back and caught Tad Whitney with a surprise right
hook. Tad fell like a ton of bricks.

"Hmmm. Wasn't *quite* what I would have done, but I guess it'll
work," President Bartlet said and turned to leave.




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