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CJ Cregg [userpic]
by CJ Cregg (ucbfeminista)
at May 3rd, 2006 (09:30 pm)





Danny: It's a little past lunch time, and Danny is on a mission - he has managed, with much charm, to get himself past both security and CJ's assistant in order to arrive at her office door. Shifting his package to his other hand, he knocks quietly.

CJ: CJ's sprawled out on the couch in her office, laptop resting on her belly. "Yeah, it's open," she calls without looking up from the screen.

Danny: Danny pushes the door open, peeking around it. "CJ - Can I come in?"

CJ: CJ frowns, having a difficult time reconciling the voice with her present location. She closes the lid of the computer to glance at him "If you're thinking of branching out into television, Danny, I gotta say, I'm not the best one to pester for a referral--" she says, frown turning into a cautious smile.

Danny: Danny snorts, figuring that's an invitation to enter. "Please - who'd want my ugly mug on national television?" he quips. "There's a reason I got into print journalism..."

CJ: "You've got a certain charm," she teases, pulling herself into more of a sitting-and-talking position.

Danny: "That's what /some/ people call it." He moves a little further into the room, resting his butt on the edge of her desk. "Including you, at one point." There's a twinkle in his eye, but its only friendly, not overly suggestive.

CJ: "Ah, but with age comes wisdom," she teases, setting her computer down and stretching.

Danny: "Oh, /ouch/," he says, but he's settling in a bit - he was worried she'd still be angry. "Just for that, I might take back the brownies I brought." He holds up the foil wrapped package in his hand, raising an eyebrow.

CJ: CJ just gives him a Look "You wouldn't dare," she says, leaning forward a bit to reach for one. "You're neither that cruel nor that masochistic--"

Danny: "Take it back," he says with a grin, pulling the package just out of reach. "Tell me I'm charming - in fact, while we're at it, tell me I'm handsome." His eyes are glinting with laughter now.

CJ: CJ just /glares/ at him before yelling in the direction of the door "Sydney, can you scrounge up some chocolate for me--?" to Danny she says "You didn't come down here to get the crap beaten out of you by a pregnant woman, and I don't actually have free time on my schedule today, so either hand over the brownies and start talking or, you know--" little hand wave in the direction of the door.

Danny: Danny sighs, tossing the brownies with a thump onto the table by the couch, and immediately going on the defensive again. "I came to apologise," he says, voice flat. "Those were a peace offering." He falls silent, and waits, trying to read her.

CJ: "Yeah," she says, rather dully, pausing halfway to the brownies. "Just--" She shakes her head, picking up a brownie and holding it, not taking a bite yet "It's really none of your damn business, you know?"

Danny: "I didn't mean - " He sighs, closing his eyes a moment. "You're going to see it how you want to see it, and maybe I should have been more careful in my words, but I honestly didn't intend to pass judgement. For God's sake, CJ - you're taking to a man who lives seven states away from his daughter, you really think ..." He trails off, realising he's raising his voice. When he starts again, his voice is lower. "You're not the only one with mood swings, Ceej," he says softly. "And lately, when it comes to Gwen - to children - I'm sorry, all right?"

CJ: "Mood swings?" she arches an eyebrow at him, still not biting into the brownie. "I'm sorry, but I don't consider being upset when a supposed /friend/ publicly implies that my husband's slacking on the job when God knows he's already beating himself up enough for--" She takes a deep breath. "I'm not the one you need to be apologizing to."

Danny: "For God's sake, I meant in general CJ, not at that moment. And I was talking about /myself/." He pulls himself up from the desk, but doesn't move towards the door yet. "I'm trying to - Forget it .... I'll give Sam a call." Because he's afraid, now, to ask if his schedule is bringing him to DC anytime soon.

CJ: "And I'm saying--" She frowns. "I'm saying I'm worried about him, and when you poke at it all it does is make things /worse/ and whatever you and your ex have worked out with Gwen, I'm not her and Sam's not you and what we have /works/ for us, and it's hard enough for both of us right now without people constantly poking at-- " She takes a deep breath, tone softening significantly. "Do you honestly think the distance isn't slowly killing him?"

Danny: "If he's anything at all - even a tiny bit - like me, then yes, it is," Danny says simply. "I don't know where you got the impression it was easy for /me/, but you're wrong about that." His voice rises a little, but only momtarily. "And I just explained - I didn't intend to poke, CJ, I know how much that hurts. You're misunderstanding my intentions, and if I can't explain, then I'll just apologise. I'm sorry, all right? I'll call Sam."

CJ: "What the hell /were/ your intentions, Danny? Because if you're 'concerned', you pick up the damn phone and say 'Hey, CJ, wanna get lunch?' but you could never be bothered to do that, could you? Because here's the thing-- I don't think it /was/ out of concern, I think it was out of a desire to make yourself feel better at Sam's expense--" She takes a deep breath, staring at the brownies.

Danny: Danny snorts at that, which is probably the wrong reaction. "Feel better at Sam's expense? Did I mention the seven states, CJ? I haven't seen my daughter in months - and if my ex-wife has her way, I may not see her ever. How could I possibly make myself feel /better/ about any of that?" he snaps. "Maybe I want better for /yours/, or maybe I really was concerned about you, and didn't know how else to express it."

CJ: "And who's fault is that?" she demands. "You want to see your daughter, get on a damn plane and see your daughter. Don't take that out on /me/. And don't tell me you don't know how to express something, you're a writer, and a damn good one at that." She sighs. "Just-- forget it," she says, resigned. "I don't have time for this. You apologized, great. You're off the hook, you can sleep easily tonight. Good for you."

Danny: He's silent for a long moment, and then he starts to talk, probably saying more than he ever intended. "I haven't left the house, except for appointments with Stanley, and meetings with Vince, for over a month, CJ. Getting back and forth between them is like walking through fire for me - getting /here/ was almost as bad, and I've got a month's worth of anti-depressants holding me up. I can't /get/ on a plane, CJ, not right now - and as far Claire's concerned, Gwen is better off without me. As for sleeping easily, I haven't done /that/ for over a year, but I do thank you for the good wishes..."

CJ: CJ takes a deep breath, watching him for a moment before speaking very, very quietly "A year ago he nearly killed himself. He's completely alone running for an office which carries with it a huge amount more responsibility and accountability than the one he currently holds. His wife is stuck in DC, both contractually and by the fact that she can't fly because she's nine months pregnant with his first child. He's got an overwhelming sense of responsibility and pressure on his shoulders right now and if you'd talk to him you could see it has him nearly paralyzed. He's not eating, I doubt he's sleeping, he's slowly killing himself trying to be what /he/ feels like he should be. I know it's hard for /you/ right now, but when you deal with that by putting more pressure on a guy who's already an inch away from breaking down-- You're not doing anyone any good, least of all yourself, so instead of taking the time and energy to rag on us or try to apologize to me for-- Christ, Danny, you need to spend less time worrying about my life and a hell of a lot more time taking care of your own."

Danny: Danny shakes his head. "You're just not seeing - You're not willing to see that maybe I didn't 'rag' on anyone," he says quietly, feeling defeated. "I understand that you're upset, I even understand why, but you're not cutting /me/ any slack. I came here to apologise for a misunderstanding and you're still assuming I vindictively attacked him. Is there any way to get past this?"

CJ: "Then stop telling me how I 'should' live my life!" she explodes before sinking back into the couch cushions. She closes her eyes and reaches up to pinch the bridge of her nose "And maybe try to remember that I'm nine months pregnant and scared out of my fucking mind, so maybe I'm a little bit oversensitive as well. Cut /me/ some slack here, too."

Danny: "I never -" Another sigh and he closes his eyes, taking a deep breath. When he opens them again, its hard to tell whether he's calmer or not. "I know you're scared CJ, and I know Sam is too - I've been there, remember? And - this isn't a /should/ or a /rag - " he says firmly, giving her a look. The rest of his words are said softly, carefully. "But I hope he's here when she comes, because that's the scariest moment, and you'll need each other." He's silent for a moment, but not long enough for her to speak. "I'm sorry, all right? I don't know how else to say it."

CJ: "I believe your exact words were 'you shouldn't be alone'. And what you completely fail to understand is that I'm /not/ alone, and for that matter-- You really think Sam's the kind of guy to /miss/ that? He's-- " She sighs. "He'll be out for a few weeks before I'm due and a little while after that and I don't think wild horses could keep him away from-- " She sighs, heavily. "You don't know him that well, do you?"

Danny: "No, I don't," he says simply, voice still quiet. "But from what I've seen, he's /not/ the sort of guy to miss it - I don't think you'd be with him otherwise. But California is far away, and if the baby comes early - " He holds up a hand, before she snaps at him. "I'm not /judging/, I'm hoping. Because if he's the kind of man I think he is, he won't want to miss it - not for all the world. It's empathy, CJ, not judgement."

CJ: "It's six hours by plane," she shoots back. "And it's not coming out that way, Danny. When you throw 'should' and 'convince Sam' into your sentences-- there's nothing in those words that has even the slightest /hint/ of /empathy/--" She sighs and glances at her watch before picking up a brownie again and, finally, taking a bite.

Danny: Danny's silent for a long moment, watching her. "You're determined to misunderstand me," he says, hurt more than angry. "And obviously I'm keeping you from something - I'm just going to go."

CJ: "No, I understand what it is you're trying to say, Danny, and I even believe you. You're not understanding /me/. I don't think you set out to attack him, but you seem convinced that interpreting it the way I have is somehow strange and foreign. It's not. Just ask him, because if you think /I'm/ pissed..." she sighs, helplessly. "I understand what you're trying to say."

Danny: "No, Ceej, if I thought it was strange and foreign, I wouldn't be here apologising for it," he says simply. "I know why you're angry. I /get/ it. That's why I'm here, why I'm trying to apologise for it."

CJ: "Fine," she says with a resigned sigh. "Just... Yeah." Pause. "Look, I've got a show tonight that I'm really /not/ ready for, Sam's getting in tonight and I can only /hope/ I'm awake enough to pick him up..."

Danny: Danny nods slowly, frowning a little in thought. Then - "If you're too tired, let me know," he says, shocking himself a little. "I can't promise to go into the airport for him, but I can pick him up outside..."

CJ: She shakes her head "Thanks but-- I'll make Tim drive me if I have to, it's... " She blushes. "We've kind of got a history of making a scene at the arrivals gate, and it's one of those things that I find myself really looking forward to when one of us is traveling."

Danny: Danny's lips quirk into a tiny grin. "All right - I don't want to be witness to that, so definitely take Tim." He nods towards the door. "I'll head out -"

CJ: CJ nods "Yeah," she says, reaching for another brownie. "Just-- Take care of yourself, you know?"

Danny: "Yeah, you too," he says, and with a final glance back, heads out.