Title: The Agrippa Story
Author: Sonia (slashwoman63@hotmail.com)
Pairing: Jed/Leo
Series: No
Spoilers: No
Disclaimer: They don't belong to me. Don't sue me. I'm as broke as New York City.
Archive: Yes (if there is one)
Rating: R for a couple of bad words. No sex in this one.
Notes: Unbetaed nonsense. Inspired by discussion on the JedandLeo slash list about the fact that three years after his divorce Leo still wears a wedding ring.The math for the character's ages doesn't really add up so don't even try it.

The Agrippa Story by Sonia

I know this day will never ever end. I just know it. It's going to go on and on, over and over again like that stupid movie with the guy from Saturday Night Live. Meeting after meeting, question after question. I can't even remember if I've taken a leak today.

I finally get to my office to try and hid from the world for a minute. I look up from the papers on my desk and I find Josh's beady little eyes staring at me. He's been doing a lot of that lately. Frankly, it's creeping me out.

"What?"

"Leo, I'm not that observant, am I?"

"Josh I will have you arrested in the next ten seconds if you don't get out here."

He put his hands up and backed up towards the door.

"Ok ok but fair warning I have a story to tell you and I think you might want to hear it sooner than later."

I hate when he does that. He knows I have to know more stuff than anyone else in the building. Except the President of course. Nobody knows more than him. For some reason that is a comforting feeling.

"What do you know?" He closes all the doors to my office of which there are way too many. He sits down on the couch and sort waves me over to join him. He leans forward with his elbows on his knees. He takes a very deep breath. I'm going to really regret this.

"You were the best man at the President's wedding right?"

"Josh what the hell...?" The rubber band around my stomach is tightening.

He sort of pulls up sharply at that. I must have yelled really loudly. Not a classy move. Now I'm the one taking deep breaths.

"You know I was. Why?"

"He missed yours because he was teaching in London and couldn't make it." One of the many regrets in my life was not having Jed stand up with me the day I married Jenny. She wouldn't change the day so he could be there.

{"Just this once, choose me over him Leo. This is the last time I'll ask you too." she said with a voice full of tears.

"I have Jen. I'm marrying you aren't I?"}

That was the first of many lies between us. She knew Jed would always come first with me. We have been together for almost my entire adult life. There are only four people in the world that are aware of our love. I've never been afraid of Jenny letting the cat out of the bag. Why would she want people to know she stayed married to a man who is in love with another man? Plus it would destroy Mallory. Abbey, well, she's a whole other kettle of fish.

He makes a noise and I remember Josh is in the room. I look over at him and he is waiting for me to say something. I don't know what he wants.

"So?"

"At the last minute you asked my father to be your best man. I remember you coming to the house. You gave him the wedding rings in one little black velvet box with a bow. You wanted him to keep them safe for you."

God I remember now. Drinking has robbed me of some memories unfortunately. A little nudge in the right direction helps bring them back. Noah Lyman was a good man that I used shamelessly. I wasn't going to have a best man if Jed couldn't be there. Jenny and my sisters talked me into finding one so I wouldn't "make a fool of myself."

Josh continued his story. I don't like where this is going.

"Being 9 years old I wanted to see what was in the pretty box. I promptly dug it out of my father's sock drawer and opened it. The rings were a matched set. Hers was so little and delicate. Yours was nice looking too but hers was really beautiful. As I was looking at her ring, yours jumped out of the box, hit my shoe, rolled across our beautifully polished hardwood floor and fell into the heat register. Up to that point that was the worst thing that had ever happened to me."

He and I are now laughing so loud I'm glad the doors are all closed.

As he wiped his eyes he chokes out "I'd never been so terrified. I had to tell my father so he could find it. I didn't see the sun for like fourteen years after that." We are still laughing and the door between my office and the President's opens. He walks in and immediately we stand up. I'm still chuckling but Josh somehow has a straight face.

"Josh, Leo. What's so funny?" he says looking pouty about being left out of the fun.

"Sir, Josh is telling me a good one about losing my wedding ring down the heat register when he was a kid."

Josh ducks his head and looks nervous for some reason. I'm starting to think he's got more to say but he doesn't want to say it in front of him.

"I've never heard that one." he says as he sits down on the couch and motions for Josh to sit down.

You know how to get rid of the President of the United States when you want to finish a private conversation? When you figure it out please let me know.

I'm sitting here in knots while Josh tells the story over. This time it's clear to me he was leading up to something. Jed is way too smart for his own good.

"That is a good one Josh but why are you telling us this story now?"

First of all he wasn't telling *US* this, he was telling me. I see him decide to forge ahead. He squares his shoulders and straightens his back. He looks like he is getting ready to be kicked in the balls.

He rightfully addresses Jed even though this is my office.

"Sir my point was I'm very familiar with the wedding ring I lost. I saw it in my nightmares for months afterwards."

Holy Mary, Mother of God I've got it. Please shut up Josh. Please.

"And?"

Damn you Jed don't you see were this going? Nobel Prize my ass. Josh looks at me for a way out and I'll be damn if I can think of one.

"My point is the ring Leo is wearing isn't the one I lost. It....doesn't match....it's more like..."

The look of terror in Jed's eyes is heartbreaking. I want to put my arms around and shield him from this. Then I remember our story. The Agrippa story. Time to dust it off. I've decided to jump in front of the runaway cement truck.

"Yeah it does match the President's ring."

"Leo?!" He's looking at me like I've just announced I'm really a black woman in disguise. He hangs his head and rubs his eyes. He's out of the game. He's forgotten our promise to use the story if we were ever questioned.

"Sir, I told you they looked too much alike. We have to tell people the truth." I take off my ring and give it to Josh.

"It's a replica of a ring Augustus Caesar gave to Agrippa, his most trusted and beloved general. If you look very closely it's slightly different than Jed's. It was a common practice for the Caesars to give that type of ring to their closest friends and allies."

Jed picks up his head and beams moonlight straight at me. The look on his face could very well blow an otherwise reasonable explanation.

"That was a good pick up Josh. How did you notice?" I might as well get all the information about this "situation" I can.

As he turned it over in his hand he said "I didn't really. Donna's friend is getting a divorce and she stopped wearing her ring. Donna remarked that you still wore yours even after the divorce. I took a look and realized it was different. I saw the President's a day or two later." From the look on his face I can tell he has bought it. Thank God he believes that cockamamie tale.

As Josh hands me my ring back,the door from the Oval Office opened and Abbey saunters in. Doesn't anyone knock on that fucking door? Christ, woman get out of here. She's fearless and completely transparent. Besides Jed, she's the worst liar I know.

"Gentlemen. Jed."

We all stand up and greet her. Jed kisses her on the cheek and whispers something in her ear. Her sassy grin appears. Now that we've escaped the fire, Jed wants to double back and pour gasoline of the still smoldering ambers.

"Abbey tell Josh about your wedding ring."

"Gladly." She's not going to even try lying. She slinks over to him and gives him her left hand. The sway of her hips tells me she's in just as a dangerous mood as her husband. She gives Josh a "I dare you to question me" look.

"It's a replica of Livia's wife of Augustus Caesar. Jed's is a replica of Augustus' ring and the ring Leo wears is the ring of Agrippa, his most trusted and beloved general. If you look very closely it slightly different than Jed's. It was a common practice for the Caesars to give that type of ring to their closest friends and allies." She stands on tiptoe and kisses Josh's cheek. His jaw drops open and his eyes are as big as saucers. He got it. He is being played.

Abbey giggles "It's a great cover story don't you think? No one would suspect the real reason behind these rings. The three of us have been together for years." she points to me and Jed. "Your President and your boss are lovers and if I'm a good girl I get to play too." she said from under her eyelashes.

"Abbey..." She's going too far.

She looks at me with a slight glare. "Josh is the only person I think we can trust with this. He keeps your secrets doesn't he Leo?" Point taken. I nod yes to all. It's obvious she and Jed had an agreement about who could handle this one. We'll discuss that later.

Josh shook his head "I'm having some sort of LSD laced hallucination right?"

"Sure you are sweetheart." she said as she turns away from him. "Come on fellows, Mother's hungry." she growls as she walks out of my office.

Jed smirks and says to me "See you later."

My response is automatic. "Goodnight Mr.President." He steps in front of me and touchs the side of my face. For a moment I forget we've just exposed our entire relationship to Josh. Just looking into his eyes makes me forget everything else.

As he leaves he says to Josh "I'm a lucky man to be loved by two extraordinary people. Could you choose between them? Why would you want to? Before you judge us think about it. Goodnight Josh." With that he disappears into the Oval.

He whispers "Goodnight Mr. President." As the door closes he bolts over to me.

"Leo, you're with...you're doing....both?" he stammers.

"Josh, close your mouth. Go home. This whole conversation has been an Oreo cookie nightmare."

I'm his boss. Some level of respect must be maintained. Yeah right.

"'Kay. Night, Leo." He's out of the door so fast I couldn't answer him. I'll talk to him tomorrow. He's so stunned I might be able to convince him that it was a dream. That's for later. As I walk over to the residence I'm thinking this evening is going to be a helluva lot better than the day was. From the look in her eye Abbey wasn't hungry for just food.

*The End*

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