Title: Our Son
Author: Sonia (slashwoman63@hotmail.com)
Pairing: Jed/Leo
Rated: G (sorry just angst and mush this time)
Spoilers: For everything in the first two seasons really.
Archive: Everywhere just ask first :-).
For Alexi. Thanks for the nudge!! Also for Nomi, one of the best. Please keep writing!

Our Son by Sonia

I looked at him and felt myself shuddered. He looked like a man who was just about to go under for the last time. I was heartbroken that his presidency was going to end this way. Then I saw his eyes. I knew.

"Watch this."

He was gonna run again. He was gonna run again and win. Fuck yeah.

When he left the podium he walked passed me. I didnt need to see his eyes. I could feel the fire from those beautiful peepers. That light had almost gone completely out after the whole bloody business started. There was no fear in him now. Just desire, hunger and need. When he gets like this, it's been my job to figure out what he needs and how to get it for him.

While we walked back to the Oval we were silent. The chaos had begun. People running around like Vesuvius had just erupted. CJ was nearly catatonic from the switch in plans. Toby was all fired up. I hope he never really turns on us. He not only knows where the bodies are buried but which plot contains which body. I thank God that man is on our side.

Sam was...Sam-like again. I saw a real pep in his step for the first time in months. He was already writing the first stump speech. I could see the wheels spinning in those incredible eyes.

Josh was quiet like the two of us. He avoided looking me in the eye when I tried to engage him. He walked with us but he wasn't really... present. Then he finally looked up. He's all teary-eyed but he had a smile on him that could light up Times Square. He tips his head at me and I elbow Jed. He looks up and Josh gives us both a sunburst from his soul. He mouths "Thank you", nods and turns towards his office. Leave it to him to be on the same wavelength as Jed and me. This moment isn't about all the work that's ahead. Not the speeches, the moneyraising, the debates, the deal making and all the shit that makes up a Presidental campaign. It's about having faith. Having that moment between the three of us reminds me of a conversation Jed and I had a few hours ago.

We were in bed. It had become our refuge from the storm that was going on around us. I have held him many many nights helping him through the ugly spots. He will always have me. I will never let him down. Through all the anger and recriminations Abbey was lost to him for a time.I was worried about her. Of course Abbey knew about this fucking disease. Her part in the coverup was more overt than anyone else involved. She kept his secret the longest. I've shared a bed with him for 30 years and he never told me. At first I was very hurt by that. Then I thought about it. I decided that he was really protecting me. Saving me for the future so to speak. He's always known what I could do for him. I proved that by making him President. I had to be kept in the dark. I,of all people, know the necessity of secrets.

Meanwhile Abbey knowingly exposed herself to all sorts of legal ramifications. I take comfort in knowing I'm not the only person that loves him all the way.

Now there is more pain.

He was crying about Delores. For her to be mowed down by some drunk. I still can't believe I had to tell him such news. I met him two years after he met her. The grief on his face has scarred me for the rest of my life.

"She was my oldest friend." he said with a thick voice.

"I know". That is all I could say. I had my arms around him. Holding him against me. Holding him together.

He sat up abruptly. Like he remembered something suddenly.

"What?" He turned towards me wiping his face.

"What if I can't have all of you?"

"You got me Jed you know that..."

"No no. I mean what if I can't have you and Abbey and the girls and Delores and Josh. He tried to take away Josh first. He succeeded Delores. Maybe he doesn't want one person to have so much love." I realized that he was serious. I didn't have to ask who He was.

I was surprised that he had included Josh. He saw my confusion.

He grinned with sadness. "I think of him as ours."

"Ah.." to spare him, I tried to fake comprehension. He knew better.

He sat up and swung his feet over the side of the bed turning away from me. His shoulders rounded and he lowered his head.

"You remember Daniel?". The son he and Abbey lost four days after his birth. Born too early and too small for this world.

"Of course" putting my hand on his back, rubbing him.Trying to comfort him and failing miserably. A loss like this one makes you think of all your hurts.

"The age is wrong but sometimes I pretend..." he stops.

"He grew up to be just like Josh."

"No" he looks back at me. He is old today. Very old and beaten up.

"He IS Josh. Josh is my son. Our son." The way he's looking at me I finally got it. Our son. Not his and Abbey's but his and mine. I'm dumbstruck. He goes on.

"There isn't a place in this world where that could be true. So I made one up." he huffed a little laugh. In the midst of his deepest pain he laughed. If thinking of his own made up world was the safest place for him to be right now, I would join him there.

"He looks a little bit like you."

He guffawed "The hell he does Leo. He doesn't look anything like either of us. He's a foot taller with ginger hair."

Ok that was it. A pathway to distraction. I took it.

"Jed you lived in England for three years, 30 years ago. When are you going to stop using phrases like lift instead of elevator. Ginger hair?! He's a redhead, for Christ sakes!"

"Are you saying I'm a phony?"

"Definitely."

He crawled back up on the bed laying his head on my chest. This was not the best time to ask but I had to know.

"Jed" I whisper kissing his forehead.

"When he was...was..." I can't say it. I've seen men killed in war but I can't talk about Josh being shot and almost dying.

"Yeah." I can hear the sorrow in his voice.

"That's why you needed to be with him. You were losing your child...in a way."

"Yeah. I can't figure out why. Why does He keeps at me? He keeps doing it to me, you know? He keeps trying to take my sons. Damn him. I try,Leo,I really try."

He's clutching at me in his growing rage. He needs a way out.

It's risky but I'll try it. "So, if we break up who gets custody?"

He sat up and gave me his patent "Iknowyouretryingtocalmmedown" face. He decides to let it go for now.

"I think I'm best equipped to handle our rambunctious middle-aged son, dont you?"

"No you'd be too lenient with him. You'd let him get away with everything. He'd run with scissors and walk around barefoot in the winter." I smile at him. Sometimes you realize how much you love someone all over again.

He looks at me with the same thoughts. I feel the love in him. Then his thoughts turn back to the anger and darkness in his heart. His voice drops an octave when he speaks with such blackness.

"It's there Leo. I feel like I'm lost in a tsunami. The ocean of my life, our lives, is still under attack. What do I do with all this.." he stops clenching his fists and teeth.

I push his hair out of his face. For a brief moment he looks like the angry young man from Manchester I first met all those years ago.

I try to smile. "I know. Let me help you find the shore." I lean in for a kiss. He grabs me starts an erotic assault that is not about love. It's about saving himself. It's about pushing back the hurt for a little while. I could tell then whatever was going to happen in the next few hours, I was going to need this as much as he did.

*The End*

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