Nikki Harrington


Sam considers the real reason he chose to run for Senator.

An established relationship story.

Written: July 2009. Word count: 864.



He looks around the place he'll be calling 'home' for the next three months and sighs.


Finally, alone at last for what seems like the first time in forever, he allows himself to think about the real reason he is where he is. The real reason he is running in a race he knows he'll lose.


It's not because of the widow, not really. It's not even because of Will's impassioned words. Or because of Amy, Josh and CJ's 'you should do it'. It's not that he wants to run; he doesn't, not yet; not at this time in his life. He's content to be Deputy Director of Communications in The West Wing. He's content to write the words Jed Bartlet, leader of the free world, will say. He's content to work twenty-nine hours a day, nine days a week. He's content to be part of something so marvelous, so intense, he sometimes feels he should pay for the privilege to be involved.


At least he was. And he was more than just content. He was happy. He was more than happy. He was in -


But all that changed. All that changed a month ago. All that changed with one conversation. All that changed with five words: 'Andy's pregnant' 'With twins' and 'Yeah' in reply to Josh's inquiry as to whether they were Toby's.


That whole day had been strange in a way, now that he really thinks about it. Andy's name had come up more than once, and Toby had claimed he wanted to remarry her. But he hadn't believed Toby, not really, not at all. He'd thought it was just Toby being Toby for Josh.


'Andy's pregnant'. He hears the words again and his own 'This is incredible'. And he wonders now how he'd managed to stand there and seem pleased. Because he'd known, as soon as he'd heard the words he'd known. He'd known that Toby and he were over. He couldn't fight twins. The shock that Toby had cheated on him. That Toby, his lover, his meant to be committed lover, had cheated on him with his ex-wife, had vanished into nothing. That he could have fought. That he could have fought and won. But twins? He couldn't fight twins.


So when Will had gone on about how he wasn't embarrassed to be running a campaign for a dead man and how Mrs. Wilde - Kay - wanted a name, just in case the impossible did happen,  he'd found himself saying 'I'll do it'.


And when afterwards, when the exit polls were showing them winning, and finally when Congressman Webb conceded the election and he'd said it was all just something he'd said at the time, something he'd said to placate Kay, not something he intended doing, and how he'd faced Toby, Josh, CJ, the President and finally said he'd do it, it had all been an act.


An act he'd carried out well. An act that hid the fact that he'd known it was the only way, the only thing he could do. He had to get away from DC. He had to get away from Toby. He had to get away from Andy being pregnant. And three months in California had seemed like the answer to his problems.


Except in three months, when he loses the election, what happens then? He knows he won't be returning to the White House. He knows he won't be returning to the West Wing. He knows he won't be returning to his job as Deputy Director of Communications. He knows he won't be returning to Toby. Because there won't be a Toby to return to, at least not a Toby that for far too short a time he'd kissed, he'd held, he'd shared a bed with, he'd loved. A Toby who had kissed him, held him, shared a bed with him, loved him? He doesn't know. He doesn't want to know. He doesn't need to know.


In his young life he's loved two people, been in love with two people, and both have broken his heart. He'd thought Lisa had hurt him when she'd left him - Then he remembers, he remembers when she'd turned up at the White House to do a piece for Vanity Fair and how she'd reminded him that he had left her to go and work for Jed Bartlet. And he had. He had left her. Just as he'd left his $500 an hour job at the Law firm. He'd left her. Just as he's left Toby.


He's left Toby. He's walked away from the man, from the person, he loves. He's walked away and he'll never go back. The realization is shattering, and the pain it causes in him almost too much to bear. But he's going to bear it. He has to. He can't fight twins.


He's left Toby and he'll never see him again.


With that thought in his mind, he turns to return to the campaign office. As he closes the door behind him the words what happens when they come to show their support? race through his mind. He ignores the voice. He'll face that if - when - it happens.



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