Title: Beneath the Surface Author: mavjade Characters: Abbey Bartlet Genre: Introspection Notes: I found this in a notebook I don’t use often. I was just looking for a place to get down an idea I had for the Bri-and-Mav ‘verse and I found this and realized I’d never posted it. - - - - She had always been smart, top of her class at Saint Mary’s College, and it had always come pretty easily. She had to study in medical school, of course, no one just skirted by at Harvard School of Medicine, especially if they wanted to be placed well for Residency. She excelled at her four years at Massachusetts General and could have gone on to be an attending, but she had even higher aspirations. She wanted to help those who were less fortunate than she, rather than just work at a prestigious hospital. When she met Jed, they were two peas in a pod: driven, but didn’t just want the best for themselves, but wanted it for everyone. When he started having aspirations about public office, she supported him fully knowing they could both get so much done if he were to make it. They’d gone much farther than she’d ever expected. First Lady wasn’t something she particularly wanted to be -she loved being a physician- but she knew Jed would make an excellent president. She was afraid, of course, that the disease that would unfairly take the man that she loved from her. If not in body, but in spirit, and that this course of action would take him much sooner. But despite her reservations, she agreed to him running for the highest office in the United States. She could not take that from him when life was going to take so much more later on. So she became First Lady and did her best to continue helping those who weren’t as fortunate, and the office allowed her much greater reach than she could imagine. But the one thing she couldn’t prepare for, and did not come naturally to her was that she often had to keep her thoughts to herself. She often found she was biting her tongue to keep from speaking her mind in a public setting. What she said was no longer just on her, but the voice of the administration. So those thoughts had to remain in her head, and the feelings tucked deep inside. Smile. “Welcome. Thank you for coming.” “You look lovely.” No opinion on world events. “Would you like a tour?” She’d become a figurehead. She was happy to do her duty, but she’d be lying to herself if she were to say it didn’t bother her. It reminded her of the old sexist adage, A woman is to be seen, not heard. When they were all alone, she told Jed her thoughts and feelings, and he was happy to listen. She could tell the senior staff -all of whom she thought of as family- her opinions and make suggestions, but where prying ears might hear, she was nothing more than the wife of the President. Everything she is had to remain beneath the surface.