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Secret Santa for ToothTen "In the Shadow" TWW: Josh/Donna


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Merry Christmas and Happy New Year ToothTen! I hope you enjoy!

In the Shadow

This takes place post In the Shadow of Two Gunmen (obviously)

Josh was wondering how he managed to be quite so unlucky. Not only was he recovering from a serious gunshot wound, but also now was additionally suffering from a miserable, sneezy cold.

He wanted more than anything to be taking wisecracks from Toby, Sam, and CJ for fainting (or for getting shot in the first place) rather than sulking on his couch with a box of tissues. Even policy briefings would be more entertaining than the droll of recuperating with daytime talk shows for his company. With a sniffle and a shiver, he pulled a blanket from the back of the couch around him, and fell into a congested doze.

Josh woke a short time later warm and muzzy headed; he had been having yet another nightmare about the shooting. The blood- there was so much blood. He rubbed a hand across his face, trying to will the vivid images away.

He peered over the side of the couch. Donna was flitting about his kitchen; it looked like she was cooking. He hoped she wasn’t cooking.

“I’m not cooking, I bought it at the deli,” Donna’s voice floated across the room.

Josh sniggered and immediately regretted it. He winced from the pain as his sutures pulled awkwardly as he sneezed.

H’tcssshhhh! H’tcssshhhhooo!

“Bless you!” Donna called. “It’ll just be a minute.”

“Thanks,” he mumbled into a hastily grabbed tissue.

Blonde hair floating behind her, Donna hurried into the living room carrying a large bowl of matzo ball soup.

“Thanks,” he said again, unnecessarily.

“Don’t worry about it, just concentrate on getting better.” Donna sat down next to him on the couch and frowned when she took in his appearance. His curly hair was unruly and sticking up in odd places and his nose was pink and irritated looking.

“You look terrible,” she said frankly.

The spoon halfway to his mouth, Josh paused and looked at Donna in disbelief. He rolled his eyes and continued eating; the heat of the nourishing soup was soothing to his throat. Halfway through, the steam had loosened the contents of his sinuses and he sniffed, irritated.

He put the spoon back in the bowl and quickly grabbed for another handful of tissues.

Ahhhh …..hehhhh…….H’tcssshhhh! Huh’itsch! Ah’hehgnxt! H’tcssshhhhooo!

He hissed in pain; any more of this and he’d definitely pull a stitch.

“Oh bless you, Josh,” Donna cooed and fussed, pushing the tissue box closer.

“Mmmm,” he mumbled, tucking back into his soup.

“Oh, I forgot,” Donna said, jumping back up. She opened the refrigerator door and pulled out a carton of orange juice. She quickly poured a glass and headed back over to Josh.

He nodded gratefully, swallowing the cold liquid. Josh then finished the soup and sank back on the couch, drained. He ran a hand over his face, pausing to pinch the bridge of his nose.

“Are you feeling any better at all?” Donna asked quietly. She put a reassuring hand on his pyjama clag leg.

Josh sort of shrugged. He still wasn’t sleeping well; the nightmares woke him up in the middle of the night and kept him awake until the wee hours of the morning. He wasn’t willing to admit defeat, not even to a well-meaning Donna.

He sniffed again as he felt his nose prickling with a familiar ticklish sensation. He gave it a half-hearted rub and began to flick through the files that Donna had brought with her.

“Are you sure you want to bother with that now? You should really get some more rest.”

Josh gave her a look, and she pursed her lips closed and looked away.

He gave his nose another angry swipe; the irritation was still present and his breath began to hitch. Josh braced himself for the inevitable onslaught, trying to brace his chest and ribcage as best as possible. He was ever so grateful when Donna pressed a tissue into his hand.

Ahhhh …..hehhhh……. Ah’hehgnxt! H’tcssshhhhooo!

Josh would deny it, but he may have let out a slight whimper in pain.

“Bless you again,” Donna said, her voice dripping with concern.

“Thanks,” he croaked before blowing his nose.

They sat there going over the briefings and notes on the upcoming midterms for the better part of an hour. Josh’s voice had gone completely hoarse and he was feeling miserable.

Finally, Donna took the files from him and put them away in her bag. “That’s it. You’ve done enough. You need to rest, Josh.” She poured him another glass of juice and fetched his pain pills and some cold medicine.

Resigned to the fact he did need to rest, Josh took the pills and juice with a nod and downed them. He wrapped another blanket around him, nearly cocooning himself.

Just as he had made himself comfortable, the urge to sneeze returned and he nearly groaned in frustration. Josh was just able to turn his head and sneezed harshly into his shoulder, the last one powerful and draining.

H’tcssshhhh! Huh’gnxt! Huh’itschooo! Ahhhh…..hehhhhh… Huh’itschooo!

Josh felt a warm hand on his other shoulder. “Bless you! Are you sure you don’t want me to stay?” Donna bit her lip worriedly. She hated to see her boss looking so miserable and vulnerable. Ever since the shooting she had been increasingly anxious and was doing everything she possibly could to help Josh recuperate fully.

He shook his head in the negative. “Just get those files back to Sam and Toby so they can make the calls,” he said, hoarsely.

She nodded. Having done all she could, Donna gathered her bag and coat and prepared to leave for the evening.

“Hey,” Josh called, softly from his cocoon on the couch.

“You know I do find you valuable, Donna.”

Donna smiled, remembering that conversation so long ago. She reached over and squeezed his arm.

“Get some sleep,” she said and she slipped quietly out the door.

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It has been too long since I thought about The West Wing. This story reminded me how much I enjoyed Josh and Donna.

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It has been too long since I thought about The West Wing. This story reminded me how much I enjoyed Josh and Donna.

:) I'm glad you liked it!

Oh my heart!!! This is so spot on and beautiful, and I think I actually may be in love with you!! Thank you very much smile.png

Thank you! I actually went back and watched a few episodes just to make sure I had the "voices" right in my head. I watched it when it was on originally and have done a few rewatches along the way but not in a while. Merry Christmas and Happy New Year! :)

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