Comfort through Trials - Boris and Natasha
Sam and Lisa # 20

Archive: If you want it, take it. Just let me know where it's going.

Rating: PG

Spoilers: None that I know of.

Author's Notes: Sequel to "Comfort through Trials - Anticipation."
This is part of a series I am working on.

Disclaimer: They're not mine, I just borrow them to play with.

If Sam were to grip the steering wheel any tighter, it would come right off in his hands. He's speeding a little, and ignoring me completely. At least before we dropped Donna off, I had someone to talk to. Now, it's just me and the rock in the driver's seat.

I think we're making record time here. Of course, usually when I leave Donna's apartment, I'm drunk, and I'm not paying much attention, but still..... Woah! That makes seven traffic laws broken in the last ten miles. Sam, you've got to get a grip on yourself. When we turn the corner, Sam's eyes light up. Okay, Sam, I understand you're in a hurry here, but can we calm down?

Pulling up to the curb, Mr. Anxious manages to run over the curb and knock over Mrs. Hildebrandt's trash can. I think the whole block is up now, and since it's after midnight, they're probably up and angry. Fine Sam, let's just drive recklessly so that all my neighbors hate me. I tell him just that, with just the right amount of sarcasm, but he's already out of the car and running up the steps. You might want to wait for me, you know, since I live here an all. I might as well get out and follow him. By the time I make it to my front door, Sam's got his own keys out, and is working on the dead bolt, which must be possessed, because it won't let him in. Taking the key from his hand, I wave it in front of his face. This, Samuel, is a car key. Pulling my keys from my pocket, I let myself in, and feel a breeze blow by and Sam races into the living room. You are not competing for a gold medal so slow down.

Trailing behind, I manage to hang up my coat, before finding my best bud in the middle of ransacking my house. Shrugging my shoulders, I decide since he isn't going to listen to me, I had better join in, or this place will be even more of a mess. Opening the door to Lisa's room, which Sam was apparently in too much of a hurry to check, I spy a message about plane tickets scrawled on a notepad, dresser drawers still open, and a closet that shows the clear signs of hurried packing. "Sam!"


He insisted I come with him to his apartment to see if Lisa left a message for him. Heaven forbid he just call me if there's a message. So much for my four hours of sleep tonight. Oh well, Donna'll only complain about my suit being rumpled for five or six hours - nothing major. Getting out of the car in front of Sam's building, I jump, oh, no more than thirty feet in the air, at a sound that suspiciously resembles gun fire. Glancing around, I decide that in this neighborhood, it might well be, and hurry after Sam.

He races to the kitchen and yells at me because there's no note on the refrigerator door. I am so not in the mood for Sam being weird. Instead of joining him in the kitchen to scratch my head at the bare fridge door, I tell him to check his answering machine like a good little boy. I'm pretty sure he didn't catch the part about being a little boy, mainly because I'm still standing. The first few messages are from me, calling to make sure he remembered to bring the position paper on emission standards, and the new polling file. Then there's a message from Sarah, and I can tell he's getting worried, because he skips it.

"Sam?" Okay. Lisa left him a message. Can I go now? "Sam, Sarah called me this morning and asked me to go to California with her. Michael needs to stay with the kids, so..... I don't know if she called you yet, but your father..... they think he had a heart attack. She thinks you should come out, but if not...... Alright, I've got to hurry up if we're going to make our flight." I try to give him one of those reassuring hugs he always tries to convince me to participate in, but he drops into the chair too quickly. Alright, already! So maybe I'm glad I came over to check his messages with him, except now, I don't think either of us are going to get any sleep.

You know, it's funny, but for as many times as Sam met my father, and I met his sister, in all the years we've known each other, I can't remember meeting either of his parents. I honestly can't remember him talking about them either. I mean, I know they exist. Sam Seaborn is not the product of some divine miracle, although some days I could argue he was hatched from an egg. Maybe tomorrow I'll have to ask him about it, but right now, I think my job description is coffee maker and stoic. I can manage that.... maybe. At least the coffee maker part. I haven't been very good with the stoic part, not for a while. Not since..... Not since.

When I wake up, I realize I've only slept for an hour. One measly hour. Today is going to be hell. Sam's already moving around, I can hear him in the bedroom. "Hey Sam!" He sticks his head out of the door, and I can see far enough past him to know he's packing. Okay, I suppose Leo will live if he jets off the California. It is for family.

"Josh?" No. Do not give me that look. Whatever it is, the answer is no. "Would you come with me?" So let me get this straight? I am supposed to convince Leo to smile sweetly while his Deputy Chief of Staff leaves him in DC 12 days before Christmas when the entire nation plans to screetch to a halt, to fly to California and hold your hand. Well, at least you're not expecting me to do something difficult. Picking up the phone, I juggle it for a second, trying to get in the right frame of mind for this. You know, the frame of mind where everything's just how it should be, and I didn't just spend the previous 24 hours yelling at a man I'm about to ask for a favor. You might as well just.... Wait, you already did.

"Leo?" Yes, I realize I shouldn't call you at home unless it's important. Yes, I realize it's only 5:30. Yes, I realize I'm an idiot. Are you going to listen to me? You are? Good. See? I do have a good reason, and although you could say no, you really can't insult me just because I'm willing to help my best friend through a particularly difficult moment in life. I intend to find out just how difficult later, but I'm willing to bet it has something to do with the fact that not once in the last eight years have I heard about his parents. "Thank you, Leo." And, yes, I mean that. I promised Lisa I would help Sam if he needed it, and although I'm sure I was promising about the other thing, I think this would be included.


Remind me never to travel 12 days before Christmas. Sam looks like I feel, and that doesn't say much, but here we are, battling cranky airline personnel. I think I've mentioned that I have a personal working relationship with the President of the United States to everyone I can, many times over. I was just rewarded for my efforts by two coach tickets. Coach? Great. And here I thought I could catch up on my sleep. The woman's shooing me away now, and some small part of my mind thinks I should be happy for anything this time of year, but the larger part wants to borrow Air Force One.

After an hour of sitting on the runway, I'm starting to wonder why I didn't pack any work. I mean, we stopped by my place. Sam gave me time to pack a suitcase. Why wasn't I smart enough to throw a few files in there too. Sitting here has helped with one thing though. I no longer want to borrow Air Force One. Now I just want to hijack the plane and force the pilot to take off. I mean, geez. How long can it possibly take to drive down a strip of pavement and go up?

Okay, we're sitting here, not doing anything, so I might as well pump Sam for information. He just sort of stares off into space for a moment, and then he whispers, "When we were little, Sarah and I used to play spy. I'd be Boris, and she'd be Natasha, and we used to make up our own dangerous missions. Once, my dad found out about one of them....." When the whisper dies off, I just prop my arm across his shoulders. Okay, Sam. We'll talk later.



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