Crack of the Whip - 5
See all the pertinent information in Part 1.
For his part, Toby just didn't have it in him to look at any of them, least of all, the President. It wasn't that he was angry with Jed Bartlet...really...at first he was. How could the President have been such an idiot? But then very quickly it hadn't mattered. What finally did hurt, in the end, was the knowledge that this brilliant and vibrant man was facing a struggle of a lifetime. Why was God or Fate so cruel?
Thankfully the meeting had ended quickly. Not, however, before everyone in the room noticed a few things. Everyone noticed that not once had Toby pulled out his familiar little note pad and pen to jot down something he had to take care of later. Josh and Sam also noticed that if the President or Toby had anything to say to each other, the comment was subtly directed through Leo. The President noticed Leo eyeing him and then glancing over to Toby. No, the President could not look Toby in the eye. Toby was beyond wanting to notice anything.
As the Senior Staff was leaving, President Bartlet asked Leo to stay behind. The two old friends stared at each for a moment before Jed flinched away. Shaking his head he asked, "My God, Leo, what have I done?"
Leo wasn't quite sure what he meant by the question. What had he done to Toby, what had he done to this Administration or what had he done to the country? Leo wisely decided to respond to the most basic interpretation of that overwhelming question.
"WE, Mr. President, have hurt Toby very deeply and should get our butts kicked." Jed looked over at Leo. It was not the answer he expected. It was, however, the one he deserved. We...Jed hadn't thought about the ramifications for Leo. Of course, Leo would feel the same guilt about his part in deceiving Toby.
Jed smiled weakly. "Yeah, you're right. I think Abbey would be more that happy to oblige us both my friend."
"When is she is coming back?" Leo asked coming to stand next to Jed to look out the window.
"Tomorrow, before CJ gets in I think. She's still pretty pissed at me Leo."
"Well, Mr. President, I think we're both gonna get it big time once she catches a glimpse of Toby. You gotta to tell her, you know."
"How are we going to fix this, Jed?" Leo turned asking earnestly. "I...I don't think we have much time."
Jed stared at him, knowing the truth of it. But had no clue of what to do.