Story [The West Wing] Dynasty (Vignettes in the Mav-and-Bri-verse)

Discussion in 'Non Star Wars Fan Fiction' started by Briannakin , Jul 26, 2017.

  1. Briannakin

    Briannakin Former Manager star 6 VIP - Former Mod/RSA

    Feb 25, 2010
    Title: I Will Hold You Forever
    Timeframe:2055 (with flashbacks)
    A/N: I wanted to write something special for @mavjade for her wedding and I REALLY wanted to write Leo’s and Marc’s wedding, but it was just too much pressure!!! I had so many ideas for cute scenes, but they were just not translating from my brain to the page, and I’m really bad at writing any sort of wedding plot. I tried like bunch of different approaches over the past few months, and none were working.

    THEEEEEEENNNN I got an idea of a “flashback” filled fic with no plot (but plenty of mushy goo). It’s a bit short, but hopefully you still enjoy it.

    Congratulations to you and dp! Mazel tov and many blessings! ~Bri

    The President and his husband lounged on their bed against a plethora of new pillows. The bed was still made, the grey quilt still tucked in, and both men still had their tuxedos on. Their black dress shoes had been discarded by the door and Marc Lyman was attempting to take Leo’s sock’s off with his toes. Leo just laid in Marc’s arms, taking his time untying Marc’s black tie.

    Leo simply smiled.

    “What’s on your mind, Love?” Marc asked.

    “I just love being in your arms.” Leo placed his hand on Marc’s shoulder and kissed him slowly. “I just love being here. I love you so much.” He then sighed, but his smile remained. “I’ve been thinking about my dad a lot today.”

    “Of course you have. He’s a huge part in why you are here.”

    Today Leo had become President of the United States. He and Marc had just returned from 10 inaugural balls and were absolutely exhausted.

    “He told me something, the morning before our wedding. It’s been going through my head all day.”

    * * *

    Leo was exhausted. He shouldn’t have listened to Abi and had ‘final drink’ the night before he was married. He knew he should eat something - his groomsmen, Noah and Elvie, were somehow stuffing their faces with waffles - but his stomach was too nervous. He just wanted to be in Marc’s arms. He didn’t like waking up without Marc and today was a big day.

    “Leo?” his mom asked. “Why don’t you take some toast and have coffee out on the porch with your dad?”

    Leo smiled as he took the plate and mug and headed out the back door. His dad was sitting on a padded bench, scowling, like old men did in the morning when their significant others made them drink decaf. His hair and beard were completely white and his skin looked worn and pale. Despite the July heat, he was wearing sweatpants and a sweatshirt.

    Still, Josh Lyman brightened as soon as his eldest son sat beside him.

    “Hey, old fart,” Leo said as a way of greeting.

    “You know, I really haven’t finalized my toast I’m giving tonight. Think I might tell the time you pooped at the East Egg Roll.”

    “Really? I was three. And that’sthe most embarrassing story you can come up with? Not Uncle Sam’s second inauguration?” Leo asked, taking the mug from his father’s hands and replacing it with his cup of coffee.

    Josh just grinned with delight before he took a sip of caffeine. “Don’t tell your mother.”

    Leo shook his head with a laugh, he couldn’t wait until he and Marc were like old married men. Leo knew Marc was going to restrict his diet at some point and Leo was going to hate it, but also fall more in love with Marc for it. Leo then felt his father’s knuckles rub his cheek.

    “I’m so proud of you Leo… of the man you have become. And Marc… Marc is just perfect for you. You and Marc will go far together.”

    * * *

    “He said, ‘You and Marc will go far together.’ I wouldn’t be here without you, hun,” Leo said. “My dad saw that all those years ago and it is so true. The way that you support me and are here for me whenever I need to vent, or comfort, or to laugh, or someone to remind me that I’m only human.”

    “So you don’t just keep me around because I look good in a suit?”

    Leo laughed as he touched the centre of Marc’s chest and felt his beating heart though the fabric of his black dress shirt. “Well… that too.”

    “I loved the bow-tie tonight,” Marc commented, gently touching Leo’s white bowtie. Leo was transported back to another memory of their wedding.

    * * *

    Leo and Marc had gone back and forth on whether or not they wanted a “first look” at each other before the wedding ceremony. On one hand, they liked the element of surprise of seeing each other for the first time in the ceremony, in front of all their friends and family, and it was a small traditional element during an otherwise generally non-traditional wedding ceremony. But they knew, despite it being their wedding day they wouldn’t get much time just having intimate moments with only the two of them. In the end, they knew they wanted to steal away a few moments alone and with the ceremony being a bit later in the afternoon (to accommodate for President Ainsley Hayes’ 4thof July address), and the photographer’s schedule, they had decided to do a “first look”.

    And Leo was glad. He was simply so stressed out in this moment and just wanted Marc to hold him and assure him everyone was going to have a wonderful evening. Due to her hangover (and need for coffee), Abi had made them all run late for the scheduled meeting time at the venue (an old library). It had only been about 20 hours since he had seen or spoken to Marc, but Leo missed his fiancé. His mom and dad walked with him to the office where Marc was waiting. After giving his mom and dad a hug, they retreated and he knocked on the door.

    “I’m here, my Love,” Leo announced.

    Marc opened the door and Leo gasped. Marc grinned. They had decided not to tell the other what they were going to be wearing. Marc was in an 3-piece all black suit, tailored to his tall frame. His dress shirt was also black and he was wearing a deep blue tie - their wedding colour - and a yarmulke. Seeing Marc wearing a yarmulke made Leo just want to break down in tears of happiness (again). This man standing before him loved him so much and had welcomed Leo’s life and family wholeheartedly.

    “Hey there, Handsome,” Marc said, sweetly. They hugged, but didn’t kiss - they were saving that for the ceremony. Marc touched the bowtie Leo was wearing - also in blue. Leo was wearing a traditional tuxedo and a yarmulke. “I love the bowtie.”

    Leo blushed. “You look so hot!” he blurted and blushed even more.

    “Oh, Leo!” Marc laughed, grabbing Leo’s hips. “I love you so much.”

    * * *

    “I love you,” Leo said, his head leaving Marc’s bicep he was using as a pillow. He kissed Marc, Marc’s lips were so warm and familiar. Leo opened his mouth and welcomed Marc in. They parted, but their foreheads remained touching. “I am so happy I made you my Mr. Lyman.”

    Marc sighed in contentment as Leo’s hands wandered down his back. “I guess that’s one thing, Mr. President,” he said, slowly, sultry. “There won’t be any more confusion regarding which Mr. Lyman people are are referring to.”

    Leo groaned in pleasure. “Yeah.” He then paused and thought about it. “Yeah… you’re the only Mr. Lyman around.” Leo had no uncles on his father’s side, and his brother went by Mr. Seaborn-Lyman.

    “Well, there’s our son,” Marc pointed out.

    “JJ does not count as a Mr. He’s five. He’s a baby.”

    “He’ll soon be six.”

    Leo pouted. “He’s our baby.”

    “Fine,” Marc accepted. “I will be the only Mr. Lyman in this house.”

    “You will always be the only Mr. Lyman in my heart.” Leo sighed. “Remember Dad’s face when we were announced Mr. and Mr. Lyman?”

    “How could I forget?”

    * * *

    Marc and Leo were well aware of the betting pool going on. It was the combination of the reality of two men getting married, along with the general tides of change surrounding last names, marriages, and their generation. Everyone had an opinion regarding what Leo and Marc could do regarding their last names once they were married: hyphenation was a popular option among hetro-normative couples and same sex couples (but Lyman-Johnson or Johnson-Lyman?); combination names were a non-traditional route (Lyson, Lyhnson, Johnman, Jyman); people even tossed the idea of them sharing one of their mothers’ maiden names; and there was the simple option of simply keeping their own last names, again a popular option.

    Leo was open to hyphenation, but Marc knew what he wanted. He wanted baby Lymans. He wanted to be Leo Lyman’s husband. He wanted to be Mr. Marc Lyman.

    So they told no one, not even Leo’s parents.

    At the alter, after vows had been said and the marriage certificate signed, they were holding hands when they were formally announced. “I now present to all, Mr. Leo Lyman and Mr. Marc Lyman.”

    Both Leo and Marc caught a glimpse at Josh Lyman. Marc now called him “Dad” too. In the front row, Josh had gasped and grabbed a crying Donna. He was so excited. His eyes began welling up and he failed to hide the tears creating waterfalls down his face.

    “You may kiss your husband.”

    * * *

    Marc kissed Leo. “I’m so glad I married you.”

    “I’m glad you married me too.”

    “I’m exhausted,” Marc heaved.

    Leo nodded in agreement. “Me too.” There was going to be no inauguration sex, unfortunately, but maybe they could share a steamy shower tomorrow morning - just another reflection of their wedding night. “We should get ready for bed.”

    “Can I look at your butt while you brush your teeth?”

    Leo’s cheeks turned red. “Okay. Will you hold me tonight?”

    “I will hold you forever.”
    Last edited: Oct 8, 2018
    mavjade likes this.
  2. mavjade

    mavjade Former Manager star 6 VIP - Former Mod/RSA

    Sep 10, 2005
    I originally wanted to do brunch, but in NO WAY would it have been that early. Wow. That's torture. :p

    It did! And it did not fall!
    But plenty of other people tempted the wrath, they kept saying how great the weather was going to be. It turned out to be drizzly and overcast all day. But that way okay, it probably makes for better pictures! :D

    Thank you so much!!! I ADORED this!! [face_love]:* It's perfect!

    I love this image. Not only is it pretty hot ( ;) ) but adorbs at the same time!

    [face_laugh] This was also a great image! Poor Josh! But it was so sweet, this whole interaction between them.

    *sniff, sniff* Dawww..... [face_love]

    Bah hahaha... but also so sweet!! They do so much for each other, but it's so sweet to hear it said!

    Ha! Good point! And as someone who has a name that gets confused (with my mom) I can understand that while you love sharing a name, the confusion can be a pain as well!

    Aww... I love that Noah hyphenated his name! And that is a perfect decision for Noah and Imogene, it fits them so well!

    Those are great! Some combo names sound really weird, but most of those would have totally worked! But I love that Marc knew what he wanted, and wanted to share that name with Leo and his family! [face_love]

    I'm not crying, you're crying! I love that they kept it a secret and that Josh was not only surprised but so moved.

    [face_laugh][face_laugh] Oh man, I laughed so hard! They are such an old married couple! (In a great way!)

    [face_love] I love this so much! No matter how long it's been, they are very much still in love and it really shows!

    This was perfect and I had to try and not quote the entire thing! I loved it so much!! [:D]
  3. Briannakin

    Briannakin Former Manager star 6 VIP - Former Mod/RSA

    Feb 25, 2010
    You are so welcome! [:D] I am so glad you enjoyed it! I had so many ideas for this and none of them were working, then this just popped in my head and I loved it. It is probably one of my favourites of the "pure fluuuuff!" genre that I have written.
    They are so hot and so adorable and I love them so much!
    There's something about grumpy old men I just love writing, and of course Josh would just be the grumpiest old man, except for when his kids need him.
    HE JUST LOVES HIS KIDS SO MUCH AND KNOWS WHAT TO SAY! (and I don't know why I yelled that).
    I said it before but I just love these characters we've created and how dynamic they are.
    Yeah, I guess I can't complain as I chose to go by my second name (which is a letter off from my father's name), BUT IT IS SO FREAKING ANNOYING when you are mistaken for a dead man (but it also makes me smile... except for when my friends text me and it autocorrects to Brian).
    I just figured it suited Noah and Imogene so well for them both to have both names. I really wish the muse would strike for those two, but I think - at least Imogene - deserves to be spared from my evil muse.
    Yeah, some last names (like with the -man and the -son endings) lend themselves to combo-names well, but I think Marc and Leo would be a bit more traditional.
    I'm not crying! You're crying! But I think that moment might have been the tip of the iceberg for Josh's water works.
    They are such an old married couple and I love writing them.
    I just love writing them because they just love each other so much and aren't ashamed to show it, or tell each other.
    Thank you! I'm so happy you loved it![:D]
  4. Briannakin

    Briannakin Former Manager star 6 VIP - Former Mod/RSA

    Feb 25, 2010
    AN: A new vignette! Yay! Mostly because my muse is currently being a butt this evening. Actually, it has been behaving for the most part, just focusing some more longer holiday fics. Anyways, hope you enjoy this one I wrote a few weeks ago!

    Title: Raw and Hope
    August 2034
    Characters:Elvie, Matt
    A/N:A bit of a continuation of themes brought up in the PM story “Let’s Try This” (which I meant to change the title of when I PM’ed it, but forgot, but it was the sex nest one :p ). This not what I had envisioned at all, especially part 2 (it was going to be 3 or 4 parts originally), and I wrote it and re-wrote it and tried so many different approaches, but this was the only one I finished and in the end, though it is far from my best prose, I liked the undercurrent themes.

    Part 1 - Raw

    Elvie made himself a cup of tea using the kettle his parents had plugged in on the kitchen table for him. He already had his cinnamon raisin toast buttered. As it was the weekend, and going to be a day of heavy physical labour, he had a pair of olive cargo pants on with an old Columbia University t-shirt. He looked down at his breakfast and groaned. It looked good, but he felt like such an old man eating toast and drinking tea. He used to eat such protein based diets with a huge mug of coffee for breakfast. But now, well… coffee made him poop his pants.

    His dad entered the kitchen, already in his “dad-jeans” and plain white shirt. He clasped Elvie’s (good) shoulder on his way by to the coffee maker. “All packed?”

    “Yeah. Everything but my standing frame should fit in the SUV. Rose and I will come back tomorrow for that with her truck.” He was moving out today. He and Rose had found a place and the building manager was great and letting them move in a few days early. The apartment wasn’t in the ideal location, and not quite as big as what they wanted, but it was a monthly rental, so he and Rose figured they’d live there for awhile and if they were still together in a few months after they saved up from their new jobs, they would put a down payment on a condo together.

    “When is the new bed being delivered?” Matt asked, pouring his coffee.

    “This afternoon,” Elvie replied. He was excited for his new mattress and bed frame his parents had bought them - it was king size and the firmness could be adjusted using a remote. He knew his parents were kinda spoiling him, but he knew they could afford it.

    And he had crashed a plane. He deserved a nice bed.

    “I’m going to miss having you around,” Matt said, sitting down next to Elvie. “Your mom is too. Seems like just yesterday we brought you home from the hospital.”

    “Dad, it’s been a couple months, and you guys knew I wanted to get back to independent living as soon as I could.”

    “I’m not talking about when you came home from rehab. I’m talking about when you were a baby.”

    “Well, in that case, you didn’t bring me home, you dropped me off with mom at the Bartlets’ in a 747.”

    “Making me feel like an absentee father, kid. But I remember that flight: you were just so cute in your little white footsie pyjamas, wrapped up in your blankie with your pacifier. You did not like the plane ride or anyone or anything, you just wanted to be cuddled up in my arms and I was perfectly fine with you there,” Matt said with a sigh, wrapping his arm around his son. “Back when I could fix anything with a kiss.” He kissed Elvie’s temple. “Is everything okay?” his dad asked. “You seem kinda quiet lately. Aren’t you looking forward to moving in with Rose and having bed-breaking sex every night?”

    “Huh? Eww. Dad.”

    “That’s a reference I’m kinda glad you didn’t get.”

    “You and me both,” Elvie grumbled.

    “What’s up, kid?” Matt asked. Matt and Elvie had a really close relationship. Elvie considered his dad to be his best friend. “I thought you were going to be like bouncing off the walls this morning.”

    “I’m okay,” Elvie said as he sipped his tea. “I just miss when I ate a dozen raw eggs for breakfast.”

    “Really?” his dad asked. “Only a dozen? What did I tell you about going into the Air Force? I used to down 2 dozen in the Marines.”

    Elvie’s mother then walked in to the kitchen. “Oh, I can smell the testosterone in here.” Helen kissed her son’s cheek as she went by to get a mug and a tea-bag. “Your room all packed?”

    He nodded.

    “Okay, I’m going to go get ready. Then we can go get you moved in with that woman of yours,” she said, shaking his shoulders.

    Elvie’s breath tightened.

    When Helen left, Matt signed. “Talk to me, Leo-Vincente. What’s wrong? Is it moving out? Because you know you are always welcome back here with us.”

    “Dad, I love Rose. I want to move in with her.”

    “We absolutely adore her too, but - and I didn’t want to bring this up because we didn’t want to assume - but it’s understandable, with the anniversary of the crash coming up this week, that the change might be a lot for you. Mom and I are having a bit of a time with this too, you know, watching you move out the week we almost lost you. But we want to support you in what you want and need.”

    “I asked Dr. Isaacs to put me back on the medication for my anxiety and depression,” Elvie breathed, beginning to rock back and forth. “I didn’t want to. I didn’t want some stupid day on the calendar to mean anything. But it isn’t working, the medication isn’t working.”

    “It’s okay. It’s okay. You’re back on the reuptake inhibitors? Those can sometimes take a few weeks to start to work.” Matt stroked the back of Elvie’s neck. “When you first got on them, you were still in DC, remember? You were on a lot of other stuff too.”

    “I know,” Elvie whined. “But I’m already getting the stupid side effects.”


    Elvie sighed. “My libido.” Of many awkward and uncomfortable conversations he had with his father over the past year, this was nothing.

    Matt slowly nodded. “Ah. Okay.”

    “Dad, I’m so in love with Rose, but… my body won’t let me show it… even more now. And between this and my stupid brain telling me lies, telling me I’m not good enough for her, that I’m broken and I don’t deserve someone like her… and maybe I don’t.”

    “Elvie, you know that isn’t true. She loves you. I’ve seen how you look at each other, how you laugh together. She sees the Elvie I see, and loves the Elvie I love. This temporary stuff, the physical stuff, doesn’t matter to her. She loves your mind, your heart, and you soul, and as long your love her the same way, as I taught you to, you two will be okay.”

    “I’m just so frustrated… and scared that she doesn’t feel how much I love her.”

    “Then talk to her. Does she know you’re back on the meds or that the anniversary is this week?”

    Elvie shook his head. “No, it hasn’t come up yet. I don’t want the anniversary to be a thing.” His eyes were closed tightly and his breaths came in tight gasps. “I don’t want… one more thing she has to deal with when she’s with me. I just love her… and want to protect her from my crap.”

    “Elvie, I want you to take a couple deep breaths, kay?” his father said. “You want me to get you some water?”

    His father was already getting up and Elvie couldn’t get the air out of his chest to say ‘no’. He didn’t want his father to get him anything. He didn’t want help. He didn’t want to be having a panic attack. He just wanted things to be normal again.

    He rolled back from the table before he could smash one of the mugs. He just wanted the voices to stop telling him he wasn’t good enough because he wasn’t able to do things on his own.

    “Elvie?” that was his father’s voice, yet he couldn’t open his eyes. He still couldn’t breathe. “I’m going to do compressions, okay?”

    Elvie nodded. He just wanted to be able to breathe.

    He felt his father stand behind him, put his stomach to Elvie’s back, wrap his two arms around him, and placed his two hands in the middle of Elvie’s chest. His father began pressing down with rhythmic compressions and hugging him in pulses.

    “Elvie,” his father said calmly. “I just want you accept that you are having a panic attack. Don’t fight it. Just let it happen. The next 5… 10 minutes are going to really suck, but I’m going to be here through the whole thing.”

    After a while, Elvie could breathe again. He rested in his father’s arms for a few moments, feeling safe and exhausted. “Yeah… maybe I should tell her. At least to warn her thatthis might happen. Dad… you give good advice… for a Marine.”

    His father simply continued to hug Elvie. “Well this Marine ran the country for eight years and raised your sorry Air Force butt,” he laughed.

    * * *

    Elvie rolled into his new apartment with a box of bathroom items on his lap and a backpack of all his tech stuff (like his laptop) on the back of his wheelchair. His parents were behind him, rolling suitcases of his clothes and books. He looked around to see the couch and the kitchen table they had bought (the only two pieces of furniture that he and Rose had needed to buy, other than their bed) had been delivered. Boxes of Rose’s books were everywhere, her TV, laptop, and gaming console were on the floor with a pile of wires. He peeked into the kitchen to see a few more boxes (he was so thankful Rose had things to stock their place with), and Rose, standing on the counter, in a pair of leggings and a short jersey dress, wiping down the cupboards.

    She shook her butt. “Enjoying the view.”

    “Very much.” He grinned. She did have a nice bum.

    “You have to help me organize this place so you can reach everything you’ll need to.”

    “Can I look at your bum while we do so?”

    She laughed. “I figure we can put my pots and pans and mixing bowls up in the cupboard and put more of the dishes where you can get at them?” Disability or not, Elvie did not cook. Rose had been cooking since she could stand at a counter, just another thing that made her perfect in his eyes.

    But she wasn’t going to have a nice, organized kitchen. Things were going to have to be where he needed him, not where she wanted them.

    “Can we talk?” His heart started to race. He was about to tell his girlfriend he was depressed and having a difficult time with his PTSD when they were just about to move in together.

    She nodded and stepped off of the counter, onto a chair, then on the floor. “What’s wrong?” she asked rubbing his neck. He loved her calming touch; even if she didn’t know it, she could really calm his anxieties.

    They went out on the balcony so they could talk in private. Rose brought out a step-stool she could sit and talk while being at his level. He took her hands and held him in his lap. She knew he had PTSD and knew he went to therapy, but they had never really discussed his mental health. He felt ashamed. He knew that was simply stigma, but he couldn’t look her in the eyes. He let out a heaving breath. “I’ve been really struggling with my PTSD over the past few weeks. I went off my anti-depressants back in like June because my anxiety… well, it wasn’t that bad and I thought I didn’t need them, but I do, for now, so I got Dr. Isaac to put me back on them.”

    Rose began rubbing his forearm. “Okay. That’s okay. We haven’t really talked about your PTSD a lot, but I have looked it up. I’m here if, and when, you want to talk about anything, or want anything. Are you feeling better now that your back on the medication?”

    He shook his head. “They can take up to like two months to build back up in my system. I… I’m having flashbacks and panic attacks again - I… I had one this morning - and I’m having these stupid irrational thoughts.”

    “Do you want to talk about these irrational thoughts?”

    “I do, with you… eventually, but not right now. I don’t want to have a complete breakdown with my parents here. They are already kinda freaked out by me moving out.” He didn’t know how to segue into this, but knew she needed to know and to hear it from him. “The anniversary of the crash is on Tuesday.”

    She looked at him with confusion, but then her features softened. “Oh… Elvie. I should have known.”

    “No, no, it’s okay. I don’t want to make it a thing. It’s just another day for me.” He didn’t want it to be a date marked on his mental calendar, but it was. He was told, barring any further stem cell treatments or technological advancements, after about a year he was going to be as “recovered” as he would get. And… that was a harsh reality for him to face.

    She nodded. “Okay.”

    “Is there anything you want to talk about?” he asked, finally looking up at her. “Anything you want to ask?”

    “Yes, and I know you will be open with me when you are ready.” She kissed his cheek. “But I do want to know if, and when, I can help you.”

    She was so patient and understanding. He kissed her on the lips. He didn’t want to scare her. “Maybe I should prepare you if - or more likely when - I have a panic attack or a flashback.”

    She nodded. “Yeah, I’d really appreciate that.”

    They spent a bit, just sitting on their balcony, discussing the different ways Rose could calm Elvie.
    Last edited: Nov 13, 2018
  5. mavjade

    mavjade Former Manager star 6 VIP - Former Mod/RSA

    Sep 10, 2005
    YAY!!! :D

    This is such a hard topic and I completely understand Elvie not wanting to talk about it, not wanting to deal with all of it. Even though we know Rose is amazing and won't be scared off, it's still a scary idea. But these scenes were so heartwarming and full of love!

    Damn right you do, Elvie! I want one of those beds!

    Dawww..... [face_love] And I totally knew he was talking about when Elvie was born, not after his accident! But I love that Elvie jumped right to that.

    [face_laugh][face_laugh] Yeah, that's not one that Elvie really needs to know! Who does he think he is with the almost overshare, Josh?! :p

    This is one of those things where emotions aren't rational. The date shouldn't matter, because what happens that day is just going to be another day. But emotions don't work that way and despite us telling ourselves that, anniversaries matter, even for the bad things. It makes us think about them and wonder different what ifs.

    The side effects from SSRIs can really suck, but especially for Elvie who already has a difficult time physically in that area because of the accident, to have one mentally as well just increases the frustration by that much more.

    I loved seeing this relationship between them! Both the parts where Elvie is having a panic attack and Matt knows just what to do, and the joking about Marines vs. Air Force were so great!

    I really liked this. We learn that Rose loves to cook and Elvie's never been good at it, but I think this is a bit of Elvie's anxiety rearing it's head. That he's worried about Rose not having an organized kitchen. I'd be willing to bet, she doesn't really care so long as what he needs is where he needs it. She can get things as she needs them.

    And, of course, she handles his telling her about going back on the meds and the anniversary very well. Because she's Rose and she's amazing! And Elvie knows this, but his brain just won't let him feel it.

  6. Briannakin

    Briannakin Former Manager star 6 VIP - Former Mod/RSA

    Feb 25, 2010
    When I first tried to write this, it was actually from Elvie's POV and he was just so in denial about wanting to deal with it, but of course Rose loves him and wants to understand and help him through it.


    Me too!

    Of course he was. I just love writing images of Matt with little baby Elvie! SO STINKIN CUTE!

    BAHAHAHA! Thankfully Matt (as any good president) can keep his mouth shut, almost, unlike his chief of staff.

    Speaking of that moment oversharing... I may have just finished parts 2 of that fic last night along with an accompanying vignette. And I'm working on part 3

    Yeah, I totally agree

    I feel so mean to do this to Elvie. WHY AM I SO MEAN!!

    Yeah, I love the tender dynamic, but that Elvie can instantly switch to roasting his dad and it still seems right.

    Thanks, it is totally Elvie's anxiety being ugly. She doesn't care where things are because she knows his reality and is a decent human and willing to work around his needs.

    Of course she does! I really do understand Elvie's fears, but I also know from the other (Rose's) prospective that they are completely unfounded, because, again, she's a decent human being. And that's a good way to put it: he knows, but due to other stuff, he can't feel it and feel confident in his own feeling.

    Posting part 2 of this now because I have those other vignettes I JUUUUST finished and want to PM/Post before I start posting my holiday fics!! (Oh, be ready for the mush and the smut in December!!!!)
  7. Briannakin

    Briannakin Former Manager star 6 VIP - Former Mod/RSA

    Feb 25, 2010
    Part 2: Hope

    (AN: I did some experimental stuff because I didn’t really know how to write parts of the crash, but it’s a flashback/dream so I think I like how it turned out (okay I’m not happy at the ideal of someone suffering from PTSD but you understand what I mean). Also, this is probably totally inaccurate in terms of proper fighter pilot phraseology.)

    The sun. High in the sky. Bright, despite the charcoal grey visor attached to his helmet. Endless blue skies and never-ending blue oceans. Flying smelt like the plastic of his oxygen mask. Freedom was silence. Flying was simply the best.

    He heard his own voice, cracking in his earpiece. “Bolling base; this is Fifty-Five.” Fifty-Five had been his call sign. It could have been so much worse, former president’s kid and all. “I’m getting some weird numbers from my computer. Mind giving me some of my stats? Over.”

    Fear began to well at the back of his throat. Nothing like being a guinea pig for a couple million dollar fighter jet.

    They gave him numbers and they didn’t match up.

    “Pan. Pan. Pan. My numbers aren’t correct. I’m going to try a hard reset. Standby.”

    Just turn it off and on again. That isn’t scary at all when you are at 20,000 feet over the Atlantic Ocean. But it was the rush of adrenaline Elvie lived for. He’d turn it back on and it would all okay.


    And now he no longer had the controls on his computer to eject. Why hadn’t they sprung for a manual eject option? He hated the US Government sometimes. Republicans. Auntie President Ainsley Hays-Seaborn would hear about this!

    He took a breath and hoped he sounded as calm as air traffic control.

    “Mayday. Mayday. Mayday. Bolling base; this is Fifty-Five. My speed and altitude still are not correct. I have no information. Ejection is not working. I’m going to need assistance to land. Clear the tarmac.”

    It less of a solution and more of a shot in hell.

    And that was the most terrifying part: knowing he was likely going to die. He was a logical person. But he couldn’t just give up. It might have been easier but couldn’t just close his eyes and accept his fate; to make his peace with the world and prepare his soul. He could rest. He would have if there had been no hope. But there was only hope.

    I wanted to start this journey in the place where it all started for me. Soon, we will be inundated by the polls, the punditry, and prognostications, all the nonsense that goes with our national political campaigns. Well, none of that matters. This is the place that matters. Because everyday, children walk in to this schoolhouse to glimpse their futures, to ask for hope. They may not know they need it yet, but they do. And I'm here to tell you that hope is real. In a life of trials, in the world of challenges, hope is real. In a country where families go without health care, where some go without food, some don't even have a home to speak of, hope is real. In a time of global chaos and instability where our faiths collide, as often as our weapons, hope is real. Hope is what gives us the courage to take on our greatest challenges, to move forward together. We live in cynical times, I know that. But hope is not up for debate. There is such a thing as false science, there is such a thing as false promises, I am sure I will have my share of false starts. But there is no such thing as false hope. There is only hope.

    Because he had hope; a chance to keep living. It was going to take a miracle to land this thing. But there was only hope.

    Freedom, skies, and hope soon came to a screeching halt with a nightmare. The fighter jet broke through rain clouds and hit the tarmac too fast and at the wrong angle. It all happened without any sense of time. So slow, yet in an instant. His organs were shoved by invisible forces and rebelled. He had no sense of his body, only vomit covering his mouth and blood in his eyes.

    He couldn’t breathe.

    He couldn’t breathe.


    Mom… Dad….




    “We need to get him out.”

    “We need to stabilize his back and neck.”

    “Who cares about his neck if he bleeds out!”

    On his back. He couldn’t move. He couldn’t breath. Blood was in his eyes.

    He felt sticky. Wet. Hard. Hard asphalt. He tried to sit. There was a helicopter. Endless whipping of wind

    “Lieutenant Santos you need to stay extremely still. We are going to help you. We are going to med-vac you out of here.”

    He needed to be able to move his neck and arms. He need to wipe the blood from his eyes. He needed to breathe!

    The helicopter became deafening. Hearing seemed to be the only sense that had survived and now that too was being stripped away. The endless woorring drowned out the world.

    “He’s going into shock! Let’s get him out of here!”

    He then felt his body being jostled, and it hurt. He was beginning to feel again. And it hurt. His body was bathed in agony as his mind caught up to what was happening. He was on a stretcher, body strapped in place. He had survived the crash. He had survived falling from the endless blue… and now they were going to take him right back up there again.

    And he did not want that.

    He wanted to breathe. He wanted the noise to be shut off. He wanted the wind to stop whipping his body. He just wanted to rest.

    It would just be so easy to give into the darkness. The endless lull tempted him with the promise of peace and silence. It would just be so easy to give up hope.

    He moved his arm. Agony erupted at the blast of fiery pain it caused through his freezing cold body. He wanted to scream but there was no air in his lungs.

    “Elvie. Elvie, it’s Dayton, you need to stay still.”

    Oh. Crap was bad if Clay Daytonwas here and he was calling him Elvie.

    Elvie heard himself speak before the implications of his words crushed his chest. “Mom…. Dad.”

    “Yeah. Yeah. I’m sure someone is getting your parents. It’s going to be alright, just stay with us, okay.”

    No. No. “Tell them…” Tell them I love them. Tell them they raised me right. Tell Mom not to cry. Tell Dad I remember what he taught me. Tell them I have hope.

    He couldn’t breathe. He couldn’t breathe. He couldn’t breathe.

    * * *

    “Elvie! Elvie!”

    Elvie woke. He knew he was in his soft, warm, dry bed and he could see Rose sitting over him, looking concerned with her hair framing her face. She wore a light purple nightgown. He tried to focus on the colour only lit by the bedside lamp. He was here; with her.

    But his mind kept telling him he was back on the tarmac.

    He wiped his eyes. There was blood in his eyes. He was bleeding from somewhere.

    He couldn’t breathe.

    No. No. He wasn’t going to have a panic attack. He had just moved in with Rose a few days ago. He didn’t want to have a panic attack. He didn’t want to scare her or be embarrassed by crying endlessly over a dream. But it wasn’t just a dream. It had happened a year ago.

    It had happened and he still couldn’t get it out of his head.

    “Elvie? Elvie? Are you alright? What do you need? What can I get for you?”

    Her questions were endless. He knew he meant well but he couldn’t focus and he needed to focus. He couldn’t answer because he couldn’t breathe. He dreaded the thought of having a panic attack and the more he tried to stop it, the worse the tightness in his chest got.

    He needed to ground himself. He needed to open his eyes and count. He needed to find five things he could see.

    He needed to open his eyes. But there was blood in them. It was drying and caking over his eyelids.

    “Elvie, what’s wrong?”

    He needed to answer. He needed to tell her he was bleeding or else he was going to get blood everywhere and they were going to have to change the sheets. It took every ounce of strength from within his stomach to form words. His speech felt like did not come from his lungs or his throat, but from his guts. “I’m… I’m bleeding." He wiped his eyes with the heel of his hand. “There’s blood in my eyes.”

    There was a moment of pause. Pure hesitation. “Sweetheart,” she was trying to be calm, but alarm still rung in the undercurrents of her voice. She gently touched his forehead. “You’re not bleeding. There’s no blood.”

    Oh God. His flashbacks had not manifested themselves in this way in months, but it was always frightening when they did. It was like a sensory hallucination. He swore there was blood on his face. That was what sent him over the edge, though, in all honesty, he was already way past the point of calming back down.

    He shuffled to the edge of the bed and used his wheelchair to guide his fall onto the floor.


    Elvie simply sat on the floor and began rocking back and forth. He still couldn’t open his eyes or take a proper breath .

    He felt Rose sit at his side and he just wanted to cry. They both had work in the morning and she should be asleep. “What’s wrong? How can I help?”

    He couldn’t answer because it felt like his chest was going to burst. His ribs burned in blunt trauma. He needed pressure! He needed another sensation. Without thinking, he began hitting his chest with a closed fist.

    She grabbed at his forearms. “Oh, Lord. Elvie, please, no, please! Stop hurting yourself!” There was pain in her voice. Did he accidentally hit her? Oh. Oh God no. He was getting violent. This was his biggest fear: getting violent. He was not a violent person.

    He hadn’t hit Rose, but still, he recoiled at himself, making his body small and tight. He curled his (upper) body into a ball on his side.

    “Elvie. I think you’re having a panic attack. You told me not to let your body tighten. You told me to help you calm down your mind by calming down your body. But I need your help, okay. You are too strong for me.” She was rubbing his back. “I need you to sit up.”

    He tried to, but he couldn’t. He was still strapped to that stretcher. “I can’t… I can’t.” Okay. Good. Words. Words are good.

    “Okay. It’s okay.” He heard her shift and felt her breath on his eyelashes. He still couldn’t open his eyes, but he knew her face was next to his face. “I have no idea what I’m doing, and I don’t know what is right.” her voice was breaking. She was crying. “So I’m just going to hug you and talk to you and hope that we can figure this out. Just start screaming or something if you don’t want me to.”

    Hope. She had hope.

    He felt her arms around him.

    “Harder,” he croaked.

    “Okay.” He felt her nod. He felt her squeezing him. He felt her love. He felt her hope.

    * * *

    Eventually, after agonizing minutes, he found his voice. His body began to relax and he could open his eyes and he counted his breathing. “Can… can you help me….” He then realized how stupid he felt asking his girlfriend to do this. “No. Never-mind.”

    “Elvie, please. I love you. Please trust me to help. What do you need?”

    “It’s dumb…. You’re going to think I’m a big baby.”

    “Elvie, I could never think that of you. Just tell me what you need and I’ll make it happen.”

    He hit the heel of his hand against the palm of his other hand, not so hard that it hurt, he just wanted the rhythm to distract his brain from spiralling. “Please, if you don’t mind and aren’t too tired,” he had to preface with that to satisfy his own anxieties surrounding her feeling obligated to do something simply because he was disabled. “I want to be wrapped in my weighted blanket and held.”

    “Okay. I put that in the linen closet. Can I help you back in bed and then go get it? Or would you rather stay here?”

    “Bed.” Once he was back in the bed, all the adrenaline had wore away, leaving him exhausted. He used all his energy to position his pillows (he could not lay flat after a panic attack - it was just a invite for another one; being on his back, unable to move, just brought back so many horrible memories) and pushed down the quilts (it was August and his weighted blanket was quite warm, but he really wanted the weight). Rose came back and draped it carefully over him. “Thank you,” he breathed, already feeling secure.

    “Is there anything else I can get you?” she asked softly.

    He shook his head, then immediately began to cry. All his emotions (and his exhaustion) poured out at once. “I… I….” She just waited patiently, getting into position to hold him close to her chest. “I was so scared.”

    She nodded, tenderly stroking his hair.

    After a few moments he asked, “Will you come with me to my appointment with Dr. Isaacs tomorrow?”

    “Of course,” she said, her brown eyes wide with compassion.

    “I love you,” he breathed through sobs. “I love you.”

    “I love you too,” she whispered back as his breathing slowed and he fell asleep. “I have so much hope for us because I love you too.”
    Last edited: Nov 18, 2018
  8. mavjade

    mavjade Former Manager star 6 VIP - Former Mod/RSA

    Sep 10, 2005

    Okay, you broke me. I'm at work and I'm totally crying.
    I started to read this while I was on my unit last night, but got pulled away. I'm glad I didn't because I'd be a mess and people would think I was crazy. At least on my break there aren't many people around!

    This really made me sad because, like a lot of pilots, I think, he really loved flying!!

    Um yeah, that's not scary at all! :p But it was certainly a good idea, it works a lot of the time and for just about everything! And he obviously had to do something! But as a fellow adrenaline junky, I can understand how it can be scary but also a rush.

    Oh man, this is so beautiful and moving! That he knew the chances of him surviving were very low, but he didn't give up, didn't let go of the hope that he could live. That's a powerful motivator!

    I loved in this whole section how it was so spaced out and very matter of fact. It really gave that sense of urgency, but also kinda how it feels when you can't breathe. Trying to pull a breath in and it comes in spurts. Words don't come out. The panic that sets in. This whole thing gave all those feelings.

    I'm pretty sure we've heard him say something about this before, but here, when we just saw how much he loved flying just minutes ago, to now be so (rightfully) afraid, really packs a punch.

    I mean, even when you don't have PTSD, sometimes dreams can have an effect for awhile after you wake, so having a dream about something so traumatic cause this is certainly understandable. And I know he isn't in his right mind at the moment so he can't really comprehend that, but it just makes me sad to see Elvie worried about his reaction to a 'dream'.

    And this is where you broke me. I mean full on tears running down my face. I love that he again holds onto that hope that things will be better, if he can just hang onto that hope.


    This was heartbreaking but so beautiful! I'm so glad you wrote it, and wrote it this way, to see it from Elvie's POV in a dream really added a dimension that I think worked really well.
  9. Briannakin

    Briannakin Former Manager star 6 VIP - Former Mod/RSA

    Feb 25, 2010
    I'M SORRY! I really need to put tissue warnings on some of these. At least you got pulled away and ended up reading it at the right time (I hope).

    Yeah. I think he did to
    Nooo. Not scary at allllll :p I mean, yeah, when nothing else is working, if often works, just kinda scary to do in that situation.

    I love Santo's "hope" speech when he's announcing his candidacy (thus why I added it). I mean, don't get me wrong, Sorkin wrote some great, moving speeches, especially for Bartlet and Sam, but there's something about Santo's speeches that also strike me so deeply. Just, yeah, the motivator of hope.

    And I guess never giving up is kinda a theme I love about TWW. They might not win every time, or pass every bill, but they never lose that hope that they can do better tomorrow.
    Thanks. Obviously I've never been in such a traumatic situation but that single thought process that happens when you are in panic mode I think is relatable and I was really going for that feeling.
    Yeah. I never really realized that, but, at least in this moment, his love becomes his feat.
    Yeah, I don't dream often, but even I've kinda been 'knocked off' by a dream. Of course with Elvie, he's also got his anxiety in high gear and his relationship with Rose is all new.

    [:D] I'm sorry!

    Thanks. I wasn't sure about approaching it in this way, but I really liked how it ended up.

    Updating again because I want to have this loose "mind bleach" series all posted BEFORE I FLOOD YOU WITH HOLIDAY MUSH AND FLUFFF!!
  10. Briannakin

    Briannakin Former Manager star 6 VIP - Former Mod/RSA

    Feb 25, 2010
    Title:Stages of Love
    Timeframe:Late 2038
    Characters:Imogene and Sam (mentions of Josh/Sam)
    A/N:Why do all my really depressing fics have Imogene in them? Though she really is just a bystander in the angst of this one. Kinda goes with the PM series “Mindbleach”; I have to post this one in order for a line in part 3 of that to make sense, but this can be read on it’s own.

    The halls of the White House seemed dark and lonely. Cold. As if the building itself was in mourning. This place always creeped Imogene out, but the long hallways were also comforting, as if they understood her grief and thus shared the feeling. She made her way to the East Wing carrying a tray of food.

    Imogene was back home from Baltimore. She had taken an absence from her studies at John Hopkins University and had come back to DC. Her uncle had just died. Uncle Josh hadn’t been her biological uncle, but he had always been a part of her life and she had loved him so much. She remembered when he used to spin her around on the grass outside, like she was a helicopter. She remembered combined family get-aways and helping the twins push him into the pool at Camp David.

    She finally reached the ‘First Lady’s’ (now the ‘First Gentleman’s’) suite and followed the single lamp light to where her dad was sitting on a dark blue couch, going through a box of photos. He was wearing brown slacks, a grey sweater, and had his glasses perched on his nose. He was holding a polaroid and crying.

    “Dad?” she said as softly as she could.

    He looked up, took his glasses off, and wiped his eyes. “Hey, Sunshine.” He gave her a gentle smile.

    “You weren’t at dinner so I decided to bring you something.” She set the tray down on the coffee table. “Peanut butter sandwich and a glass of milk.”

    “Thanks Love. I was at the funeral home sitting with the body, letting Noah have some rest so he could sleep. Then Leo asked me to help with the eulogy. He still wants me to do it, but I think he should.”

    Imogene nodded. She could only imagine how much pain her closest friends were in. “I think he should too. He’ll do an amazing job.” She adjusted her shawl she was wearing and sat down next to him, cuddling up.

    “Your Aunt Donna wants to do some sort of slideshow. I think she just wants keep herself busy. She asked me if I had any old photos.”

    “What did you find?” she asked, gently covering his hand with hers. The polaroid he held was face down. At her gentle touch, his trembling hands showed her the image: the picture had been taken on New Years, 1990; Josh was wearing two party hats, and Sam was kissing him on the cheek, while taking the photo. The love and joy (and alcohol) were clear in Josh’s eyes and dopey grin. After a moment, Imogene said. “It’s a beautiful picture.”

    Sam broke down, sobbing. “I loved him so much. I loved him so much when we were together.” He wiped his eyes to compose himself.

    “You want to talk about it?” she asked.

    He nodded. Her dad began with a smile. His eyes became distant. “It was what… ’88… ’89? When we met? I had just been hired on as a speechwriter for a congressman. Your Uncle Josh had been his Chief of Staff for a few months. And we just instantly hit it off and became best friends. We joked about, watched baseball games together, bugged each other about law and women. We became quite close. I first learned he was bisexual when he learned one of his ex-boyfriends from back in his undergrad era had just passed away from AIDS. It hit him kinda hard, survivor’s guilt or something - I guess that was kinda the story of Uncle Josh’s life. He survived so many people.” Sam sighed again and Imogene simply listened. “He said they had remained friends and he regretted not being able to go back to Connecticut for the final days or the funeral. In that moment, I just fell in love with him. Not because I had realized he would love me back because of his sexuality, but he was just so vulnerable and caring in that moment. He cared even for an ex. He was this brash, cocky man, who deep down cared so much.”

    Imogene laughed slightly and nodded.

    “I just fell head over heels for him. So, a couple weeks later, we were watching a Mets game, drinking, and I got bold and put my hand on his thigh, and he just turned to me and kissed me right on the lips! Guess we both had crushes on each other.” He shook his head. “I’m not sure when we went from just fooling around to actually dating, but we moved in together and were together for awhile. And then I broke his heart.”

    She rubbed his arm as he wiped his eyes again.

    “I mean, I have no regrets about how my life turned out. I love your mom. I love our conversations, and our disagreements. I love how she challenges me and loves me. And I love the two perfect daughters we have,” he said before snuggling her close and kissing her forehead. “I don’t think he was the love of my life and I don’t think I was his. But I do regret not being braver or kinder.”

    Those words struck at Imogene’s heart.

    “Josh wasn’t out to many people, but he was out to his parents. I got to meet Miriam and Noah several times, as Josh’s boyfriend, and they were just the most loving, accepting parents. And I just knew mine wouldn’t be the same. As things got more serious between us, the more ‘out’ - I guess - Josh wanted to be. He wanted to be able to hold hands when we went out for dinner or kiss each other as we walked in the park. And I just freaked out and panicked. I am ashamed to admit I loved my life as a privileged white guy more than I loved my boyfriend. So maybe it was better. Maybe I didn’t deserve that kind of love at that point in my life because I was so unwilling to make sacrifices for him. I’m thankful I’ve learned and have grown and can do that for your mom. Anyways. When I got a job offer in New York I took it without consulting him, but our relationship had pretty much broken down at that point. Me moving ended it.”

    “But you guys were such good friends. I called him Uncle Josh.”

    Sam nodded. “Josh came to see me after he was asked to get on board for your Grandpa Jed’s Presidential campaign. He was passing by New York and came to see me to catch up. I was engaged at that time to a woman I didn’t love. Josh came back after he discovered Grandpa Jed was ‘the real deal’ and begged me to write for the campaign. It was awkward at first, but then Josh and I discovered what we were to each other originally: best friends. And we were able to go forward. He of course fell in love with your Aunt Donna and I fell in love with your mom and we never had any regrets. We loved each other, but it was a different kind of love. He made me president and was my right hand. We achieved great things together.”

    Imogene smiled and took the polaroid. “I think… you should ask Aunt Donna of course… but this picture should go in the slideshow.”

    Sam smiled. “Yeah… I think so too.”
    Last edited: Nov 27, 2018
  11. mavjade

    mavjade Former Manager star 6 VIP - Former Mod/RSA

    Sep 10, 2005
    Ahh... I don't know if it didn't tag me when you quoted me, or I just missed it. I'm at work and my break is almost over so I don't have time to do a full review (I'll do that tomorrow) but I couldn't wait to say how much I loved this and how moving it was! The image of the picture gave me a huge smile.
  12. Briannakin

    Briannakin Former Manager star 6 VIP - Former Mod/RSA

    Feb 25, 2010
    It's okay. I understand. I'm glad you enjoyed it and the image of the pic! This is probably one of my favourite Sam fics I've written.

    Posting the next one because it's MMM, but rest assured, there's one more fic in the "Mindbleach" epic.
  13. Briannakin

    Briannakin Former Manager star 6 VIP - Former Mod/RSA

    Feb 25, 2010
    Title: Next Steps
    December 2033
    Characters:Elvie, Matt/Helen
    A/N:This was written for MMM (see details in spoiler tab). Nothing from TWW is needed to understand this fic and pretty much nothing from this OC series is needed to know (that isn’t briefly explained in the fic) but I did include a brief primer. I took a looser interpretation of the prompt. This isn’t overtly mushy because it was a hard one; because I’ve written other vignettes later in this time period showing Elvie still struggling with these things, I realized (after I got like 6000 words into this) I couldn’t have much of a conclusion/resolution. I didn’t want to completely scrap it, but it just kinda ends after part 4 (which is where the bulk of the mush is). Sorry. Also my muse just really hopped away from me and begged me to write the fic I refer only to as “the Christmas smut-fest.” So I figured I’d post this kinda angsty story before I post that pure fluff, plus this is for MMM.

    Also, this chapter is a bit on the longer side. Normally I would have split it, but I wanted to get some mush in for MMM.

    ALSO getting a new wheelchair is like getting a new car. Just saying. It’s like Christmas.

    Write a story about a character or characters adjusting to something new.

    This can be anything you like: a new stage in their relationship, a new baby, new sibling, new home, etc.

    Matt Santos was elected President in 2006 in the final season (he’s basically the Obama of The West Wing…no, actually, writers based him off of a then Senator Obama). He was married to Helen Santos and they had 2 kids: Peter and Miranda. In Mav’s and my fanfic continuation, they had their third child, Leo-Vincente “Elvie”, in 2009. In 2033 Elvie was in the Air Force but crashed on a training run and sustained several injuries including a severed spinal cord.

    December 23

    “How does it feel?” Ian asked, kneeling at Elvie’s feet. “Is it comfortable?” Ian was Elvie’s seating specialist. A few minutes ago he had rolled Elvie’s new wheelchair into his room at the veteran’s affairs medical centre, and Elvie was actually kinda excited; he had been fitted for this about a month ago and it was finally here. He’d no longer have to use huge, clunky hospital wheelchairs. This was his and it was custom fitted to him. He had gone with a brushed titanium with blue accents and blue spokes.

    Elvie nodded. “Yeah. I like how far forward the back wheels are,” he said grabbing the push rims and manoeuvring around.

    One of Elvie’s physical therapists, Lance, nodded. “You should be able to get nice long pushes since you can grab further back. Just be aware that it does mean your centre of gravity is a lot further forward so you can tip back easier, which is a good thing for when you have enough strength to pop a wheelie to hop up a curb or something. But I want you to try to keep the anti-tip bars on for now. I also don’t want you spending too much time in your wheelchair over the holidays. If you are going to be in the same spot for a long period of time, make sure you try to shift your position.”

    Ah, the ever dreaded pressure sore. Elvie had yet to experience one, but orderlies were always coming in to bug him and shifting his position.

    “Also,” Lance said, “The back push handles are adjustable, so you can have them down and out of your way if you are pushing yourself, but please keep them up for the time being so someone can push you during longer periods. Your shoulder is still healing from your surgery last month and I don’t want you overdoing it. It’s Christmas; be lazy.”

    Elvie chuckled. “Yeah, I’ll try. I have four little nieces and nephews.”

    “Four little slaves then,” Ian laughed as he and Lance stood up. Elvie didn’t laugh. He knew it was a joke but hated asking anyone for help, let alone little kids. Ian got to the matter at hand. “Don’t be afraid to take an Allen key or a screwdriver to this thing if something is bugging you, but once we are all back from the holidays, I’ll check back in and see if we need to make any adjustments.”

    Elvie nodded. “Thank you. Happy holidays,” he told both men as he saw both men out of his private room before wheeling himself around in a circle. The turning radius on this thing was amazing! He could basically turn in place. And it was so light! He could barely believe the difference. He felt so much more active, like he was in a much better position for pushing himself around.

    After his fun (and resisting the temptation to try to pop a wheelie) he went back to his task: packing. He was finally getting out of the rehab centre… at least for five days. He was going home for the holidays and he was just looking forward to being with his family, hanging out with his siblings, and cuddling with his nieces and nephews. And eating good food (not hospital food). But he was also rather anxious. At home there were no nursing assistants to help him dress or use the washroom. And no therapist to help him with his thoughts he was having. He was going to be on his own.

    He was packing his clothes when he realized he had no dress clothes for church tomorrow evening or for Christmas dinner. He knew he had some stuff at his parents’ place, and all he had been wearing here was sweatpants and hoodies, but his weight had shifted over the past few months - he had lost some core strength while on bed-rest, but was gaining it back now that he was doing more intense physical therapy.

    He then heard a knock at his door while he was packing his toiletries and medication. God, he needed a lot of things just for five days. “Come in.”

    He smiled when he realized it was his parents. His mom was in her mid 60s and was wearing jeans and a purple sweater. His dad was also in jeans and a black sweater. They were such an old married couple. His father was Matt Santos. He had been President of the United

    States when Elvie was a baby. Elvie gave them both hugs.

    “Hey, nice wheels,” his dad said.

    Elvie rolled his eyes but smiled. “Yeah feels like I’ve lost a good 20 pounds. I didn’t think the titanium would make that much of a difference but I guess it really does.”

    It was Helen’s turn to roll her eyes: boys and their toys. She looked into the small duffle bag he was packing. “Do you have everything?” she asked.

    Elvie nodded as he put his toiletries and bag of medical supplies in the bag. “Yeah, but do I have anything at home to wear to Mass or for dinner.”

    “Oh, we aren’t going to Mass this year, and we are just going to have a casual Christmas dinner.”

    “What?” Elvie said in genuine shock. He didn’t know what flabbergasted him more. His parents were liberal, but they were fairly devote Roman Catholics. The family always went to Christmas eve mass. And, while they weren’t the most prim and propter family, his mother always liked it when all her kids and grandkids were all dressed up for Christmas dinner as they always took family photos afterward. “…Why?” He wasn’t disappointed. He didn’t exactly feel like going to Church or having a formal family meal; he and God weren’t exactly on speaking terms at the moment, and he didn’t feel like wearing anything other than sweats. Both were for the same reason. He had been in the Air Force and in September, there had been a horrible malfunction with a jet he had been training in. He had crashed and had been severely injured … and somedays it felt like the worst part of it all was the fact that he had survived.

    He had survived with multiple physical traumas, a spinal cord injury, a beat up shoulder the doctors had to reconstruct, and PTSD. Right now, he just didn’t want to live this life anymore. His body and his mind were fighting two different battles.

    “You didn’t cancel our family traditions because of me?” Elvie asked, though he already knew the answer: both the truth and the answer they were going to give.

    “No, no,” his mother rushed to say.

    “Yes, you did,” Elvie gritted. “I canwear something other than a hospital gown. I cansit through a 2 hour sermon. I’m not completely crippled.” God! This was such bull! They didn’t even ask him if he thought he could sit through Mass without the pain becoming unbearable. They had just gone and assumed he couldn’t do something. Since becoming disabled, nothing angered him more. Maybe he should just stay here in the hospital for Christmas. Drink; order food; and sleep. “Or maybe you just don’t want to be seen in church with me.” Elvie had closed his eyes without knowing it. His hand had clenched into a fist. When he opened them, his mother’s back was to him and she was hunched in grief. His dad was comforting her with a large hand on her back. This had happened way too often in the past few months. He had caused it to happen.

    And his parents somehow had endless patience. His dad explained simply. “Elvie, all we wanted was to spend as much time with you over Christmas. We wanted you all to ourselves for Christmas and that was selfish.”

    “I’m sorry, Mom. I feel like such an ass. All I wanted was a normal Christmas.” He rolled forward and tugged on the back of her sweater, like he did when he was a little boy. He hoped she found it nostalgic and endearing. “Mamma, I think I’m just hungry. I had a hard physical therapy session.”

    His mother breathed, turn around, and held him. “Okay,” she finally said kissing his cheek. “Why don’t we run to the mall and see if we can get you some new dress clothes, then you and your dad can go to the food court while I finish getting some stuff. We’ll have to call your brother and sister and tell them we are going to Mass tomorrow.”

    Elvie’s siblings were much older than him; he has just turned 24, but his sister, Miranda, was 32 and just had her first child, and their older brother, Peter, was 36 and had 3 kids.

    “They are going to kill me for dragging them to church,” Elvie realized out loud.

    “Hey you wanted a normal Christmas,” his father pointed out. “It wouldn’t be a Santos Christmas without screaming or a little murderous intent among siblings,” he said, kissing his wife’s cheek.

    Elvie’s parents had met back in the late 1980s one night, just before Christmas, when Helen had come home with her roommate (Matt’s younger sister) after a frightening incident in their dorm and had been given Matt’s and his brother’s bed to sleep in. Matt had come home for Christmas early and had crashed in the same bed… without noticing the other occupant.

    * * *

    People were everywhere.Maybe instantly going from a clean, quiet, sterile hospital to the insanity of the mall on December 23rd wasn’t the best stepping stone. It was, frankly, overwhelming, on top of Elvie being tired (and hungry) and from a full day of physical therapy. Thankfully, most of the other shoppers seemed to preoccupied with their own tasks to give a second glance to the Santoses which was nice because it could sometimes be difficult going places with his dad if people recognized him (which happened less and less as time went on). Matt and Helen still had a Secret Service detail, but it was very small these days; only two agents accompanied them everywhere and they also doubled as drivers (since former presidents can not legally drive on public roads). Elvie always thought it was probably the most pointless, boring job ever to drive and follow around former presidents and first ladies but the “teams” of agents assigned to his father and mother were comprised of one new member of the Secret Service and one veteran of the Service, so the Santoses basically facilitated training. And frankly, Elvie was glad for the two members - Muhammad and Arther - right now as they provided a bit of a buffer from the crowds.

    Still, Elvie chose to have his dad push him so he didn’t have to deal with navigating. They eventually made it to the suit shop. Thankfully it wasn’t too busy.

    “I think we should get you a custom suit,” his father said as they looked at the wall of dress shirts.

    “Not tonight,” Elvie laughed. “I just want to get out of this place.”

    “No duh,” his mother said. “We should get you a nice bright dress shirt, you always look so nice in bright blue. And a sweater vest,” she said as she looked over a display table.

    “Mom, I’m not a kid anymore,” Elvie snapped, rubbing his temple. He instantly felt bad, again, for taking his bad mood out on her.

    “Sweetheart,” Matt said to his wife. “I think the kidand I got this covered,” he gritted, eyeing his son. “Why don’t you and Arther go get what you wanted to finish up the stockings?”

    Helen nodded. “I’ll see you in a bit,” she said before leaving.

    Matt looked sternly down at his son. Elvie guiltily looked away. They were interrupted by a younger sales woman, who came sauntering over. She looked tired, but still wore a smile. She clearly didn’t recognize the family. “Hello there, how can I help?” She eyed the Secret Service agent with confusion.

    Elvie replied. “I need a pair of dress pants, a your brightest blue shirt, and a sweater vest.” He then looked at his father. “Would a bow tie be too much?” He then shrugged and looked back at the woman. “Whatever you think would make me look cute for my mom.”

    She laughed. “Let’s see what we can do. Will you be wanting to try anything on. I just have to have someone give me the key to the accessible change room.”

    “Yeah, please. I’ve recently lost some weight and I’m not sure what size I am.”

    He picked out what he wanted and they got a few size options, then his father pushed him to the back of the store as the sale assistant grabbed a key. However, when she opened the door, they were met with piles of boxes and other miscellaneous items. “Oh. Um. Do you think if I moved that fan and those brooms out of there you’ll have enough room?” she asked.

    Elvie was simply speechless. The accessible dressing room was being used as a closet. He was being shoved into a closet.

    “It’s fine,” his father said. After the door closed, his father looked down. “I know, I know, it’s not fine, but we have enough room and I just want to get out of here.”

    Elvie had to agree. With his father’s help he was able to strip off his hoodie and try on the shirt and sweater vest. The trouble came with the pants. Even taking off his sweatpants (without ripping off his bladder bag from where it was strapped to his inner thigh) was difficult, and his dad had to lift him to get the first pair of dress pants on. Elvie was sweating, Matt was heaving in deep breaths… and the 32x32 size did not fit. They were big, baggy and looked horrible.

    “Dad,” Elvie sigh. “Let’s just go. I’ll just buy the 30x32s and hope that they fit.

    “No, no, you’ve been wearing pyjamas and sweats for the past few months. If you want to dress up and look nice for Christmas, then I want to do that.”

    “Dad. It isn’t worth the trouble. I just want to get out of this stupid closet,” Elvie whined. He felt so de-humanized in the current situation.

    “I think it would mean a lot to your mom to see you all dressed up for Christmas.”

    “Alright,” Elvie breathed. “Let’s try the 30x34s. I think the 32s are a bit short for some reason.” The reason probably had something to do with his seated position - his legs hadn’t gotten longer, he just needed more fabric to cover his ankles in his new permanent position.

    A half our later, Elvie was back in his sweatpants and hoodie. His father looked pale, tired and disheveled. Just looking at his dad made Elvie burst into tears. He was exhausted, hungry, hot and sweaty. “I’m sorry. I’m so sorry.”

    His father hugged him. “It’s okay, it’s okay. No one likes trying on clothes, but your mom is going to be so happy. You looked so nice. I’m going to go pay for all this, then we can grab some food and go eat in the car.”

    * * *

    Elvie was so tired, transferring back into the SUV had been an ordeal - even with the transfer board, the long wood plank that helped him move from his wheelchair to the car. His dad had to help him slide up and into the seat.

    “Is Peter and that crew coming tonight?” Elvie asked as his dad got into the vehicle and set a box of pizza between them. Elvie instantly opened the box and stuffed a slice of spicy sausage pizza into his mouth. FOOOOD! It was hot, gooey, and glorious.

    “No, they’ll be over tomorrow morning.”

    “But who’s going to help me in the bathroom and into bed tonight?”

    “Your mom and I canhelp you, you know, we aren’t thatancient. And we are so happy to have you home and help you, but you need to have a bit more understanding of where we are coming from. We love you and your our baby.”

    “I know, I know. But you guys have been kinda been infantilizing me. I don’t want you guys changing plans or traditions for me, without even consulting me to see if I can or want to do it. I had all my gifts for everyone shipped to the house, and Mom wrapped them all without even telling me! She knows what she’s getting from me. And I can buy my own dress clothes, Dad.”

    “I know, I know. We need to ask you more instead of just assuming, but you could ask more and let us feel a little useful, instead of forcing us to watch you suffer. I know like too have your independence and need to learn new ways of doing things, and we are trying to give you your space.” His father’s voice got softer. “But we were so, so scared, Leo-Vincente…. We thought we weren’t going to have another Christmas with you. I don’t want to even think about what that would have looked like. So it just brings me such joy to buy you a new outfit for Mass. We actually weren’t planning on going because we didn’t want to pressure you into going. I know your faith is at a low right now.”

    “That, and other things.” Elvie was struggling with so much of his identity; his faith, his sexuality, and who he was. He knew, from talking with his therapist, a lot of it was transitioning from a life where his physically demanding career was the centre of his identity and life, to adapting to life with a disability. His therapist called it healing, which was a word Elvie really liked. And he knew a lot of his identity struggles also came from the medication was for his PTSD and his physical health. “But I do want to go to church tomorrow night, because that is what we always do. Even if I don’t stay through Mass - I think it would be good for my healing to go. Maybe I’ll go to confession or talk to one of the priests.”

    “Yeah, of course. I want you to talk to me about this stuff, but I think going and talking to maybe Father Cooper might do you some good. If you want, I can call him and make sure he’ll be available in his office for you. I believe Fathers Paul and Willson will be doing the mass.”

    Elvie pretended to fall asleep.

    Matt laughed. “You know, when you called to tell us your doctors were letting you come home for the holidays, she cried because she was so happy. She called your brother and sister and started to make all these plans for things we can do as a family. She made all your favourite cookies. She made sure all the bathroom renovations were going to be done. We are so just happy to have you home for Christmas.”

    “I know, I’m happy to going home for a few days too. I can’t wait to see what you guys have done with the place… even if it means I have to sleep in the living room,” Elvie joked. He knew his parents were in the process of renovating their home to be more wheelchair accessible and that things weren’t quite finished. They had a ramp to the front door, and they had knocked down a wall to make a bathroom bigger and had refitted it to have a roll-in shower, but the bedroom (once an office) now attached to that bathroom was not finished.

    “I think tonight Mom wants to make you a nice snack, because I know you are going to be still hungry after eating this pizza, and then just cuddle and watch movies.”

    Elvie smiled. “That sounds fun.”

    Matt then pulled his son close and kissed the top of his head.
    Last edited: Dec 3, 2018
    Vek Talis and Raissa Baiard like this.
  14. mavjade

    mavjade Former Manager star 6 VIP - Former Mod/RSA

    Sep 10, 2005
    Okay, I'm finally here! And reading these a second time to do comments, they were just as amazing as the first time I read them.

    Stages of Love
    The imagery in this was just so amazing, I feel like most of my comments are about it, but I just can't help but pointing out my favorites.

    My reaction to this was "Woah..." that's a really powerful thought, and makes perfect sense. The things those walls have seen. The grief, the triumph, and everything in between. They probably truly inbody the phrase, "If these walls could talk" (plot bunny!).

    The image of this is just so cute, that she has those memories and that's how she remembers Josh. Those happy memories from childhood really are powerful.

    I can just see Sam from this description. And I feel bad for thinking it when he's going through a sad time, but before I got to the crying part I was thinking it was pretty hot.

    And if this doesn't sum up the two of them in one picture, I don't know what would! It's 100% them, and so adorbs.

    We obviously knew that Sam cared a great deal for Josh, and certainly loved him, but this made me kinda happy to hear that he really loved him. I mean, I didn't think Sam was the kind to string someone along, he isn't, but knowing he loved Josh too made me happy even if their relationship didn't end that happy.

    It really is. Poor Josh. :(

    And this completely sums up Josh. And I think that's one of the things that makes me love him so much. He is cocky, no doubt about it, but hidden underneath where he doesn't show many people is a very compassionate and caring man. I know we've talked about it before, but this story really brought that home.


    I don't either, but someone doesn't have to be the love of your life to break your heart. And it's clear neither of the regret where their life went, but I can see Sam always regretting breaking Josh's heart, even if (and he clearly did) Josh forgave him a long time ago.

    I love this so much! That he was out to his parents and they were accepting! It so fits with what we know about them!

    Ooof. This is one of those things that's hard to realize about yourself. It's painful, but it's a point to grow from. And in the 80s/90s you can't blame him for not wanting that struggle. You can blame him for how he went about it, though.

    And this just hit the whole story out of the ballpark. That Imogene thought that picture should go in, and I'm pretty sure everyone would agree. To most people, it would probably look like a silly drunk picture, but to those in the know it would mean even more.

    [face_love][face_love] I'm just so happy to read more of the story between Josh and Sam. I love it so much!!

    Next Steps

    I imagine so!
    Quite a bit of a different situation but my dad has a really crappy transfer chair, but he's pretty much using it full time when they aren't in their house. He gets mad because it hurts when he goes over the smallest bump, he's exhausted going anywhere for any period of time and he can't move himself around in it. My mom complains that it hurts her back a lot of the times. I keep yelling, "Get a better chair!" But they are both stubborn. I tell my dad, a chair that has more support and bigger wheels won't hurt as much and he won't be as tired, and also will give him more freedom to move himself. I tell my mom a titanium chair will be light (she has to pick it up and put it in the car) and having bigger wheels will put less strain on her both when she's pushing him and trying to get over bumps. But do they listen? No. I know they are expensive but I think it's worth it. I'm about to just buy it for him for Christmas and not give him a choice. :p Sorry for the rant, just had to get that off my chest and Elvie's new chair made me think about it more.

    Anyway, back to the story:


    Oh man, before he got to the anti-tip bars I totally pictured Elvie taking it as a dare and then just tipping right over backward. :oops:

    Having seen some nasty ones, that's something you for sure don't want. I've seen the ones that go all the way to the bone, it's not pretty.

    Why did I never think about my niece and nephews that way?! :p But I understand Elvie's feelings. He wants to be independent as soon as possible and I'm sure it's endlessly frustrating to have everyone telling him it's okay to ask for help. Which it is, but I imagine he's not really all that open to the idea at the moment unless he absolutely can't do something.

    [face_love] They are totally that adorable couple, still so much in love after all these years!

    This is so hard. They want to make things easier for him, but he wants things to be as normal as possible. I feel like it's a bit of a lose, lose situation. I feel like even if they asked, he probably would have said he wanted to go even if he didn't/felt like it wasn't a good idea.

    I don't want to go into that environment and I didn't just get out of a hospital after a traumatic accident. I get overwhelmed just thinking about it.

    Dawww.... he's so cute! And I totally think he'd rock the whole thing! *mental image* Yep, totally rocks it! Adorkable!

    Seriously?! :mad: Why do I get the feeling this comes from experience?

    This really hit home, both in the story and personally. Wanting to help and help being wanted are two different things and sometimes I find it hard to push down the 'let me help' mentality when someone didn't ask for it. I try to be conscious of it, but I'm sure I still fail because it's so ingrained it's almost instinct. Elvie has just had his life turned upside down, of course he wants things to be as normal as possible because so much of his normal has had to change.

    Daawwww..... [face_love][face_love]

    I loved this! It was a great look at this point in Elvie's life with the mush to make it sweet, but also something that makes you think.
  15. Briannakin

    Briannakin Former Manager star 6 VIP - Former Mod/RSA

    Feb 25, 2010
    I'll reply to the other comments when I post the next part in a few days (I'm trying to decide if I want to post the remaining ~3600 words of the Elvie story in 2 parts or 3), but I just wanted to address this since Christmas is fast approaching (AHHHHHH! I HAVE SO MUCH TO DO!). But transport wheelchairs suck (which I know you are aware of, but I had to say that... because they do). But I also understand obnoxiously stubborn parents and grandparents (long story, grandfather broke his foot a few years back and do you know how long it took me to convince him that forearm canes would be much better? And then he stole mine for like 4 months). I fully support you if you decide you want to make your dad's and mom's life easier! I'm not sure your price point - you can PM me if you want further help... but yeah, ANYTHING is better than a transport chair. You probably know some of this, but this is an insider's prospective ;) They are a bit pricey, but TiLite, Invacare, and Quickie all make nice lightweight but folding wheelchairs (I've had decent rigid ones with all 3) in both titanium and aluminum. TiLite is my favourite by far, but again, you will pay more. Karma is another brand I've heard of and they are a bit cheaper. Depending on your dad's size (and I'm assuming since he's using a transport wheelchair, custom size isn't a factor) you might be able to get a deal on eBay - TiLite and sometimes other companies get rid of their 'floor models' on eBay. There are also other websites where you can sometimes get older models for a bit cheaper than directly from the company. Let me know if you want/need help.
    Last edited: Dec 7, 2018
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  16. Briannakin

    Briannakin Former Manager star 6 VIP - Former Mod/RSA

    Feb 25, 2010
    Thanks! I've been trying to make my fics more descriptive in the imagery department.

    Yeah, some places are just so engrained with history, I'd image the White House as one of those places. And, of course, for Imogene and the others, that history is also much more personal.

    It wasn't all bad for Imogene. I like to imagine her with a special relationship with Josh (she did end up marrying one of his offspring after all, even if Noah does take after Donna, I imagine Lyman genes still run strong :p )

    Well, it IS Rob Lowe :p I like to think old man Sam Seaborn would still have it (which TOTALLY LEADS to the next part of "Mindbleach")
    I pictured it in my mind and it was just so them!

    Yeah, I wanted to make it clear that Sam loved Josh - it might have been a different type of love at different times, but he loved him (I mean, Sam deals with Josh's insurance company! That's love beyond friendship right there!)
    :( It is SO Josh.
    Yeah. I think it is what makes me love him too. I think it also why I find him so hard to write - because I think the character and I might be a lot alike.

    I agree - someone doesn't have to be the love of your life to break your heart. And yeah, I think Josh forgave Sam long ago, but maybe Sam never forgave himself.

    I keep saying this but I really wish the muse would bite in some kind of capacity for Miriam/Noah.
    Yeah, and Sam clearly grew from it, at least in how it affected him and his job. And yeah, it's one of those things where, you know, if Josh wasn't the love of his life and if Sam wasn't ready to settle down and do the whole open relationship thing, you can empathize with Sam's rational (especially given his career choice and the times). But, yeah, he didn't do it in the best way.

    Thanks - and I'm pretty sure everyone would agree too. As for most people thinking it was just a silly picture... yeah, that's going to come up again :p

    Thanks. I had the details of the Josh/Sam backstory in my head for awhile, but I couldn't figure out how to write it. I tried it with Josh telling Leo, but I couldn't figure out how to make it work, and then this came to me and I thought it was so lovely and perfect to do it with Sam and Imogene.

    I figured older/"mature"/
    professional Elvie would probably go with boring black, so I wanted to give him some colour when he's younger.

    OH MAN! Plot bunny. Not based on personal experience or anything, because I've never done that... in a dress and high heels [face_whistling]

    Oh man. Yeah, never gotten one near that bad. But my friend who used to be a post-op nurse has stories.
    Yeah, I'm not sure if he'll ever be open to that idea.

    Pretty much the theme of this year's holiday fics is adorable old couples and their annoying kids :p

    Yeah. And with his "snapping' in this moment and his anger at the situation, it is his PTSD coming out. He's being a bit irrational in not seeing their side, which is just making it all worse.

    I know! I feel so bad for doing this to Elvie! I don't like going to the mall or any sort of store like 2 weeks before Christmas, and I don't live in a major city.
    Yep! He's adorkable!

    Yeah, it unfortunately is. And people wonder why I hate shopping.

    Yeah. And on the other side of it, I try to understand people are just wanting to be nice and it makes them feel better... and I do suck at asking for help when I need it.

    And yeah, for Elvie, so much has changed, he just wants a normal holiday for both himself and his family.

    Thank you. I tried to channel Sorkin with this holiday fic, because I really enjoyed how the TWW holiday special all were a bit 'deeper' than your average holiday mush.
  17. Briannakin

    Briannakin Former Manager star 6 VIP - Former Mod/RSA

    Feb 25, 2010
    December 24

    Elvie was woken up by the smell of sweet French toast, and crispy bacon. He was a bit confused at his surroundings at first: huge bed, tons of pillows and quilts, fireplace, Christmas tree… Peter.

    His older brother grinned. Peter was wearing a white collared shirt and a hideous Christmas sweater. Elvie and Peter actually looked fairly similar; they both resembled their father. Peter sat in a black recliner, holding a plate and eating. “Morning Sleeping Beauty.”

    Elvie rubbed his eyes and yawned. He was actually super excited to see his brother. Peter had tried to visit him often, and he had been there in the first few days at Walter Reed and had helped him on the journey back to Texas two months ago (which had been a nightmare), but he had his work (he was a professor at the University of Houston) and his family… speaking of which…. “Hey, where are the kids and Katrina?”

    “They’ll be coming over in a bit. I brought over all our and all of Miranda’s presents. I’m eating your breakfast, by the way. You were sleeping like a log.”

    “I’m making more!” their mother called from the kitchen.

    Elvie yawned again. “Sorry. It’s been awhile since I’ve been able to sleep in, plus Dad was helping me change my positions and every time he did he’d apologize and ask me if I needed anything. Like I was being interviewed.” Every 2-3 hours Elvie had to change sleeping positions. For now he needed help but he was getting better at falling back to sleep… except when his dad did it.

    “Well, I’m apparently giving you a shower this morning, so I’ll try not to interrogate you while I wash your butt.”

    Well, out of everyone in his family, he probably preferred Peter helping him in the shower, but he hated the idea of anyone he loved helping him with the most intimate of tasks. But he was also going to need help doing a whole lot more in the bathroom. He had to do a bowel program today so he won’t have to on Christmas. “What? You don’t want to play 20 questions while I’m taking a dump?”

    “Just so long as you aren’t doing that whileI’m giving you a shower.”

    Just make a joke of it,Elvie told himself. “Well, I can’t guarantee anything. Speaking of which,” he said, struggling to sit up. Peter offered a hand, so Elvie grabbed it. “Can you hand me the black bag in my duffle?”

    Peter nodded and grabbed the bag that had the tell-tale sound of pills. “We having some fun?”

    “Funny,” Elvie mumbled as he began to open bottles. “You can either have some of these, or you can drink alcohol tonight. Pick wisely.” Unfortunately, drinking on the medication he was on was a bad idea. But he could ingest (or smoke) some other fun stuff.

    His mom then came in with a tray of his breakfast: French Toast, bacon, orange juice, and water.

    His brother turned to him. “Breakfast in bed in the living room. My God, you are the favourite child.”

    “Not much competition,” Elvie Laughed.

    After taking his pills, eating his breakfast, Elvie started to feel a moving sensation in his bowels. His brother was talking to their dad in the kitchen and their mom was upstairs. He felt so awkward yelling, “Peter!”

    He was so worried about having an accident in the bed that he began transferring, but the bed was too high and he still hadn’t gotten the upper body strength to do bed transfers on his own.

    He felt a sliding sensation in his bowels, but he didn’t have any control to stop it. His body betrayed him in multiple ways. “PETER!”

    * * *

    Elvie could not even look at his brother. Elvie now sat on the toilet naked, finishing his bowel program by pressing his lower stomach and silently cursing the stupid pills for kicking in so fast. He had no idea what had changed today to cause them to act so quickly, or had he just been distracted. He held onto a grab bar.

    Peter was putting Elvie’s pyjamas into a laundry basket he had grabbed. “I’m really sorry, Elv. I’ll make sure to put these in the washer so you’ll have them for tonight.”

    “I’m sorry…” Elvie didn’t know what else to say.

    “It’s fine, Elvie. Everybody poops. And it’s not like I didn’t changed your diapers when you were a baby - back when you were actually cute. I’ve handled your poop before.”

    There. It happened again. A comparison to “when you were a baby”. Elvie was so sick and tired of being infantilized. “I know, but you shouldn’t have to do it now. I should have paid for a respite nurse.”

    Peter walked over and cuffed Elvie upside the head. “Stop that.”

    “Stop what?”

    “Doubting my love for you.” Peter sighed and knelt down. “I might not do everything right, and we both suck at the mushy, brotherly love stuff, but I do want to care for you, because I do care for you. If things were swapped - and god how I wish it were methat had gotten hurt - you would have dropped everything and come to my side. You wouldn’t have blinked cleaning me up or helping me shower.”

    Elvie nodded, knowing his brother was right. “It still doesn’t make it easier.”


    “It still doesn’t make asking for help easier.”

    Peter nodded. “I can’t imagine how hard it is. I can’t imagine asking mom or dad, or me and Miranda for help doing this. But helping you… doing whatever you need, is so… so easy. Because we love you. It’s Christmas and we have you home and want to hug you… but not when you are stinky and naked.”

    “Well, I hug you when you’re stinky. And you’re stinky all the time.”

    Peter chuckled, then hugged Elvie . “And I hug you when you are on the toilet… naked.”

    * * *

    Elvie let Peter shower and dress him. Elvie rolled out of his bathroom wearing his new dress clothes: the black dress pants, bright blue shirt, light grey sweater vest, and a blue plaid bow-tie. Elvie had his sleeves rolled up in hopes it might make him look a little less dorky. He went to find his mother, who was making up plates of finger food in the kitchen. He rolled up behind her. “Hey, Mom.”

    “Now, if you go stealing any of this cheese before lunch time…” she warned before turning around. “Oh, Elvie. You look so handsome!”

    “Thanks Mom,” he said sheepishly before stealing a slice of havarti cheese.

    “Elvie!” she exclaimed as he swiftly exited the kitchen. The front door then opened and he heard yelling.

    “Grandma! Papa!” It was Peter’s three kids: Edward, Sarina, and Tabatha, along with Peter’s wife, Katrina who was carrying in bags. Everyone would be spending two nights and they were all already in their good church clothes.

    Elvie nervously rolled into the hall. The kids had visited him the rehab centre, but only once since they were all in school. They were 8, 6, and 5. They were still getting used to their uncle being in a wheelchair. “Hey guys,” he said. Back, a year ago, they would all attack him with hugs and he throw them in the air and onto the couches. Now they seemed timid. “Can Uncle Elvie get a hug and then we all can go bug Papa?” Elvie leaned down and held out his arms.

    Eddie and Sarina gave him hugs, but Tabatha, who was the youngest, clutched her mother’s leg.

    “Go hug Uncle Elvie and tell him he looks good in a bow-tie,” Katrina said, clearly just wanting to get rid of her daughter so she could go unpack. Tabatha, however, began to cry. Elvie’s heart just sank. Had he scared her? She seemed to have been fine when she had visited him for Thanksgiving. She had spent the entire meal in his hospital room climbing on him.

    Finally, through sobs, she belted out, “I’m sorry Uncle Elvie!”

    He rolled to her. “Why, Sweetheart?”

    She used his footplate to climb into his lap. He put his arms around her. “I forgot to ask Santa for new legs for you.”

    Elvie found himself laughing at her innocence. “That is absolutely okay. Uncle Elvie doesn’t need new legs, and I don’t trust Santa as a doctor. He’d probably give me reindeer legs.”

    Tabatha began to laugh. “No he wouldn’t.”

    “Yes, he would. I know him and he has a pretty weird sense of humour.” He got her to sit down on his lap. “Let’s go find Papa and show him how pretty you are in your Christmas dress,” he said, fixing her pink ruffly dress.

    They began rolling down the hallway. She frowned when they went through the living room and she saw his bed. “Who’s sleeping in the living room?” she asked.

    “I am.”

    “But you can’t!” she insisted.

    “Why not?” he asked back in the same tone.

    “Because Santa won’t come if he thinks someone is awake in the living room.”

    Elvie chuckled. “It’s okay. Papa knows Santa and they were talking and Santa knows I got hurt and need to sleep in the living room this Christmas.”

    “Well, then, Santa had better be quiet and let you sleep.”
  18. mavjade

    mavjade Former Manager star 6 VIP - Former Mod/RSA

    Sep 10, 2005
    Awww.... [face_love] This is so sweet! I love the interactions between Peter and Elvie and of course with his niece!!

    Ha! I can just picture him opening his eyes looking around and then landing on his brother, still a bit confused as to where he is. It made me giggle!

    What I really loved about all of these interactions is you can clearly see they are brothers. They have that pick on each other type interaction, but it's clear in the picking that they love each other. My brother still picks on me every chance he gets!

    Oh no! As if the whole thing isn't embarassing enough, this just takes it to a whole new level. :(

    That's one of those things that I think people always say but never really think about and that goes for anyone. Just because you wiped someone's butt when they were a baby doesn't mean they shouldn't feel upset about you seeing them as an adult. Peter obviously meant well and wanted Elvie to feel like he was okay with it, but yeah...

    After my grandfather had one of his legs amputated I had to help him with bathroom stuff once when an emergency happened and it was incredibly awkward for both of us. I don't know if I said the right things, I just remember thinking to myself it was probably more awkward for him and to act like it wasn't a big deal (and it wasn't to me, I was happy to help). This situation just kinda reminded me of it.

    [face_love] Such a big brother thing to say, and I totally believe it.

    I was thinking, oh no! She's scared of the chair, which would be understandable at her age. No less devastating to Elvie, but still understandable. And then...
    Oh my heart!!! I just... :_|[face_love]:*
    That is the cutest thing ever, and very much what makes children so wonderful. That their view of the world is so simple and untainted.

    [face_laugh] And of course, Elvie is a fantastic uncle! That's such a great reply.

    Hahaha.... she's so cute!! I love her!

  19. Briannakin

    Briannakin Former Manager star 6 VIP - Former Mod/RSA

    Feb 25, 2010
    Thanks. I wanted to challenge myself with a bit of "sibling mush" with this and I'm happy it turned out kinda decent.
    Lol. I enjoyed writing that bit.
    Thanks! It was hard - for me at least - to get the mush and love in there without getting all kissy and snuggly, because I don't think Elvie would have that type of relationship with his brother.

    Yeah, I still pick on my brothers and they still pick on me :p
    Yeah :(

    Yeah, at best the whole 'I did this when you were baby' thing is just awkward. But this shows Peter, and the rest of the family, are still adjusting along with Elvie.
    Yeah, when I need help, I try to remember I am asking (usually) people who have been in my life for awhile, or are otherwise paid for it, who (I hope) think it is no big deal, but it still feels awkward.

    See, I almost went that way, but then this popped in my head and it was so cute and I figured I had already been mean enough to Elvie for one fic.

    They are just so innocent! It is just adorable!
    Of course. I think Elvie would be the fun uncle!

    This is the last bit of this weird, half planned fic. I wanted to try to get my other holiday themed fic up before Christmas, but I don't think it's happening (I am so braindead lately). But I'll try to get at least one chapter of that up (... if I ever come up with a title).
  20. Briannakin

    Briannakin Former Manager star 6 VIP - Former Mod/RSA

    Feb 25, 2010
    Dec 24 - part 2

    * * *

    Later that day, after dinner, Elvie loaded into the SUV with his parents - Tabatha wanted to ride with them, but Peter and Katrina reminded her that she needed her carseat. They arrived at the church a bit early so they could get a pew on in a secluded corner at the back. Miranda, Elvie’s sister, now joined them along with her husband and her three month old baby, Victoria.

    Once everyone was settled in - Helen was reading the kids a story to entertain them before mass began - Elvie, at the end of the pew, tapped his father on the shoulder and whispered, “I’m going to go see if Father Cooper is in his office. I might be awhile.” He then smirked when he saw the worried expression cross his father’s face. “Don’t worry, I only say it because I want to skip out on this snooze fest.”

    His dad rolled his eyes. “I’ll keep my cell on vibrate if you need to call me.”

    Elvie then pushed himself out of the sanctuary, trying to ignore all the glances of curiosity and pity. He made his way down distantly familiar hallways - he had been an alter-boy here in his youth. He rolled to a closed door and knocked.

    It opened and a man in his mid-50s, wearing a priest robe, with greying hair and beard exclaimed “Leo-Vincente Alexander Ronen Santos!” and gave Elvie a huge hug.

    “Father Cooper,” Elvie laughed. Father Cooper was a very jovial man, but could be very blunt and honest. Plus, he was liberal and fairly modern.

    “Come in! Elvie, come in! I was so glad when your father called and told me you’d be here tonight.”

    Elvie pushed himself into the small room. Every square inch of wall and desk space seemed to be covered in books or papers.

    Cooper sat on the edge of his desk chair and leaned forward. “That evening, when we heard about the accident, all your aunts, and your sister came in and we all prayed into the night for you. So it just fills me with so much joy to finally see you again. Pretty sure this is the best Christmas gift I’ve gotten in awhile.”

    Elvie looked down. “Well, then, I think I might ruin the Christmas spirit.”

    “What’s on your mind? I’m guessing quite a bit. Don’t worry about the time, I - surprisingly - have nothing else I have to this evening. I might not have any answers but I am here for you.”

    “I… I just don’t know where to start.”

    “How are you? Honestly, how are you?”

    “I’m struggling with a lot of things. I’m getting help with the physical and mental side of it all, but I thought it might be good to talk to you about the spiritual side.”

    “Yeah, well that’s good because that’s the one thing I specialize in,” Cooper joked.

    Elvie rolled his eyes but smiled. He sighed again. “I’m not struggling with the whole ‘why me’ thing. Everyone thinks I am and I’m not sure that’s a reflection of me or just a misaligned disability stereotype. I mean, I figure I’ve had a pretty privileged life so far, so something bad was bound to happen. And I’m well aware it could have been so much worse. I mean they brought in a priest to do my last rites and my last confession.”

    “Was that your most recent confession?”

    Elvie nodded. “They have a chaplain at the VA centre where I’m at, but I haven’t been to see her, though apparently she’s more than willing to bring me to see a priest or have someone come in for confession for me. I don’t know. I just feel so distant from God right now.”

    “That’s okay. I think that is an understandable feeling, but know that Jesus isn’t distant from you. He’s been at your side this entire time and He’ll continue to be with you. You’re only human and He understands that. I mean, I think you should try to reconnect with Him, even if it’s just opening your bible or talking to someone about God. I’m going to give you my cell number and if you ever need to talk, I’m here.” This hadn’t been the first offer like this

    Elvie had gotten, but he was grateful.

    “The thing is, I don’t think my distance began with the accident. I mean, I think it certainly brought some of my issues with faith and God to my attention, and waking up in the hospital to my dad crying and begging God, wondering why God would punish me for his sins, has just been haunting me. But I was just so busy before - I mean there was training, and before that was Law School. I guess I don’t know when the last time I believed. Being Catholic was just a huge part of my identity and even that I’m realizing has been stripped away from me. I’m not Catholic, I’m not an Airmen, and I can’t even use the bathroom by myself. Somedays I don’t know if I’m a grown man or a child.”

    “You are a child of your parent’s religion, that can be difficult for anyone trying to find their identity and where they stand with God. I want to encourage you to find God for yourself, no matter how that looks like. I see who you still are, as does your family and those that love you, and God sees. Finding God can be in small steps, that is okay. You can pray, meditate, read books, do whatever. Try to do something small every day, even if it’s like reading a psalm. There is no pressure, but I hope you find God again. I’m going to pray for you now. Join me if you like, but maybe just try to calm your brain and feel in your heart.”

    Elvie bowed his head and let out a breath as Father Cooper began to pray.

    * * *

    Elvie left Father Cooper’s office feeling a bit better. There was no urgency for Elvie to “make up with God.” That made him feel at peace… and loved. And getting to talk through some of the more spiritual aspects of what was going on in his life really uplifted him and made him want to start turning back to God.

    Or maybe he was being swept up in the holiday. But whatever it was, he was feeling good and wanted to keep this feeling for Christmas.

    His shoulder was starting to hurt, but he didn’t want to call his dad, so he slowly made his way back to the sanctuary. But he frowned when he saw his brother and sister standing outside the sanctuary. Neither looked happy. Miranda had her brown hair up in a claw clip, making her look way too much like their mother. She was holding her baby, who was swathed in a red and green Christmas baby quilt, and rocking.

    “We need to talk,” she said, sternly, directing them to an empty bench.

    “What happened?” Elvie asked, reaching our for the baby. He loved holding his little niece and was suddenly so grateful he lived to see the little Victoria Leonora - named for him. Her wispy brown hair was getting thicker.

    She set the sleeping baby in his arms. “After you had been gone a bit, I got up and was going to check on you, but Mombegged me not to.”

    Peter explained further. “Mom started to cry, said that she didn’t want you thinking that she had sent Miranda to find you. Mom said she feared you getting mad. Now,” Peter said, putting his hands on his hips. “Why would Mom be afraid of you getting mad?”

    Elvie sighed. He knew what was on their minds; he had PTSD. Anger and violent outbreaks were sometimes an issue for people with PTSD. He had experienced them. “Because I’ve been an ass. She’s been babying me and I lost my patience and snapped at her.”

    She cuffed him upside the head. “Don’t do that.”

    “Ouch! I’m trying not to!” Elvie exclaimed. He sighed, looking down at the baby. “But I’ve been really sucking at it.”

    “No, you haven’t,” Peter heaved. “You have every right to be angry right now. Just don’t take it out on Mom and Dad.”

    “No,” Elvie disagreed. “I mean, I agree I need to be more explicit and calm when explaining what is annoying me, but I don’thave every right to be angry. I’m alive; I’m healing; and I get to cuddle with the cutest little niece.” He said the last bit in a high pitched baby voice. “Can we just try to have a happy, calm Christmas and I’ll try not to be a complete ass.”

    “That’s what we are saying; you can be an ass, just don’t be an ass to mom or dad.”

    Elvie nodded. He could do that.

    December 25

    Elvie sat on his bed, perusing through an old bible he had found. It was just past midnight and almost everyone was still up and in the living room. Eddie, Sarina, and Tabatha were all upstairs, asleep, but his mother, Peter, and Katrina were all filling up stockings; Miranda was feeding Victoria and leaning against her husband, Ravi. And Matt was drinking spiked eggnog as he set up the massive Victorian doll-house he had built for Sarina and Tabatha.

    Even Thomas Jefferson had joined the family in the living room; he was curled up contently in Elvie’s lap, purring. Thomas was a old, crabby barn cat (crabby because it was too cold for him to be outside hunting rodents). Elvie, as a kid, had named all the farm animals after former presidents and other US historical figures (mostly because it had cracked him up how much it annoyed his father; he always bugged his dad: “one day, you are going to get three llamas and I’m going to name them Matt, Josh, and Sam!”). At one point they had a whole bunch of chickens named for former First Ladies. Elvie scuffed Thomas’ chin.

    Peter yawned, then looked at his watch. “Good Lord, it’s almost one.” He brushed Katrina’s shoulders. “We’d better get to bed. I don’t even want to think about what time the kids will be up.”

    Katrina turned around and glared at Elvie. “Well, at least we don’t have to worry about their uncle coming in, waking them up, and disturbing us this year.”

    Elvie just gave her the biggest, sweetest grin. “Yes,” he said, looking around at everyone. “Go to bed. Get out out of my bedroom!” he joked.

    His mom smiled as she sat on the edge of the bed. “Can I get you anything before we head to bed?”

    Elvie saw his sister glaring at him from behind his mom. He knew he had to be nice and let his mom feel like she could do something to help. “Can I get another blanket, please?”

    She nodded and kissed his forehead.

    She left and while she was gone, both his siblings said their goodnights and went upstairs. His father then finished up wrapping the doll house, and began turning out lights. “You seemed good today,” his dad observed.

    “It probably has something to do with the good food I’ve been fed today. I think I ate almost much almost as you.” He leaned forward and poked his dad in the belly.

    “Go!” his father laughed, gently shoving his son back.

    “At least I didn’t have near the amount of eggnog you had,” Elvie laughed, picking up his pillow and throwing it at his father.

    Matt laughed. “Your a pain in the ass, you know that,” he said, throwing the pillow back. Matt then put his forehead against Elvie’s. “But I’m so glad you’re mypain in my ass.”

    Elvie put his arms around his father’s shoulders. “Me too. I love you, Dad.”

    Matt held his son close. “I love you too.”

    After the cat had leaped away from the intimate moment, Matt helped his son lay down, and when Helen came back with two quilts, he helped position Elvie and tuck him in. Helen laid out the second quilt beside Elvie on the bed. “Just so you can grab it if you need it,” she said. She kissed his cheek. “I love you.”

    “Good night Mom. I love you too,” he yawned.

    “I’ll be down in two hours to change your position,” his dad said, kissing Elvie’s forehead.

    “Dad,” Elvie began to tell his dad it wasn’t needed, when he remembered what his loved ones had been telling him. He’d let his dad help, and if his dad was too tired to go back to bed, he’d let his dad sleep next to him. He let out a deep breath. “Okay. Thank you.”
  21. mavjade

    mavjade Former Manager star 6 VIP - Former Mod/RSA

    Sep 10, 2005
    This is such a lovely continuation!

    Dawwww.... so cute! Those darn car seats!

    I tried not to quote everything he said, but I really loved Father Cooper, but this in particular. He clearly cares for Elvie, and genuinely concerned. He seems so warm and compassionate, but also understanding, exactly the way he should be. He could have really turned Elvie away by being hard nosed, but his understanding goes a long way.


    [face_laugh] I love Peter and Miranda giving it to him, but still allowing room for him to be angry. Such great siblings!

    Hahaha... I love the cat is named after Jefferson and he's an old crabby barn cat!!

    [face_laugh][face_laugh] Yeessss!!

    I'm so happy Elvie gets his normal Christmas, and while I know it's naive to think it fixes things for him, I think it does him a lot of good!
  22. Briannakin

    Briannakin Former Manager star 6 VIP - Former Mod/RSA

    Feb 25, 2010
    Okay, sorry for the limited comment replies. Sleep deprivation is real.

    Thanks. Though it isn't the most mushy or funniest conversation, I really enjoyed writing it.

    One day, she's probably going to regret being named after her Uncle Elvie!

    They are really great and understanding that anger is one of the steps of grief.

    This has been floating around in my head-canon for awhile and it just cracks me up. He probably also had a cat and a dog named Alexander Hamilton and Aaron Burr :p

    Thanks! I think it did him a lot of good too. Thought in this circumstances it was hard, I think Elvie would always enjoy being home for Christmas.
  23. Briannakin

    Briannakin Former Manager star 6 VIP - Former Mod/RSA

    Feb 25, 2010
    Title: Home for Christmas
    December 2033
    Characters:Josh/Donna, Leo/Marc, Noah and Abi
    A/N:AHHHHHH! I totally meant to post this before Christmas… and clearly failed! This was my brain’s attempt to get back into a bit longer, multi-chapter fics. Also, much of this was written during NANO so that should explain a lot. My muse kinda died half way though, but the beginning is still worth a read.

    Also, this contains gratuitous smut (okay, like 3 bonus scenes), so I’ll be PM-ing those.


    December 7, 2033

    “I can not BELIEVE your brother and sister didn’t come home for Hanukah,” Josh Lyman declared as he strutted into the living room in jeans and a green sweater. He scuffed his white beard as he sat down in his leather chair. He might have been 72, but he pouted like he was two years old. In the background, on a small table sat a menorah with three candles glowing. They were nearly out, marking the end of another evening. “Abi didn’t even call me tonight! And, well, that brother of her’s… well, Noah never calls,” he continued to rant about his two younger children. “Ungrateful offspring,” he muttered

    “Dad,” his oldest son, Leo, sighed, looking up from his laptop. He was 23, the spitting image of his father (but with his mother’s eyes) and studying Law at Harvard. He frankly didn’t have the time to be away from Boston, but he was here in DC for three days visiting his parents for the Jewish holiday. “Cut the twins some slack. They are freshmen… at Yale… in the middle of their first college exams. Don’t you remember what that was like when you did it all those centuries ago?”

    “I still made time to visit my parents for at least a few days.”

    “Like Hanukah is such a high holiday,” Leo sarcastically said.

    “I still visited them! Every year!

    “Yeah, because your parents lived in Connecticut,” his wife reminded him as she entered the living room, sat on the arm of Josh’s chair and wrapped her arms around him. “It was like a half hour drive for you probably.” Donna had just turned 60 earlier that year, but her hair was still blonde. She wore a purple cardigan and her pyjama pants. “Besides, all our babies will be home for Christmas and that’s all I want.”

    “And the twin’s birthday,” Leo reminded her with a chuckle. Leo’s siblings, Abi and Noah, were born on December 23rdand Abi never let her birthday be caught up in the Christmas festivities, it was a bit of a family joke. Leo then shifted nervously. “Are you guys sure you are okay with Marc coming for the Christmas?”

    Marc was Leo’s boyfriend. They had been dating for only about 3 and a half months, but Leo… well… Leo was positively in love. His family had met Marc just a few weeks ago for Thanksgiving and it had gone well… mostly. Marc did have a panic attack upon learning that Leo’s “Auntie Ainsley and Uncle Sam” were President and First Gentleman of the United States… and that Leo’s best friend, Josie, was their daughter. But other than that, it had gone fine.

    Both Donna and Josh shared the same smile. They had been married so long that they now smiled the same. Leo kinda hoped that would happen to him and Marc. “Of course,” his mother replied. “We’d love to have him. I’ll make sure to do up a stocking for him.”

    Josh just rolled his eyes. “Your mother just wants another mouth she can stuff food into.”

    “Marc hasn’t had the most… functional family,” Leo said with a sigh. “I think he’s really looking forward to being a part of a normal holiday.”

    Normal? You’re calling this family normal?” his father asked.

    Donna patted her husband’s stomach. “We adore Marc and I can’t wait to have him here for the holidays.”

    “It’s the holidays now!” Josh repugnantly pointed out.

    “Yes, Father,” Leo sighed, closing his laptop. “You have just me for three whole days. That’s something to celebrate. Do you want to play a game of cribbage?”

    “More like do I want to kick your butt?” his father said, getting up to get the crib board.

    * * *

    Leo was just about to skunk his father when his phone started to ring. Leo began to blush as soon as he saw the ID. “It’s Marc.”

    “Alright, alright,” his father sighed, throwing down his hand of cards. He only did so because he was losing so badly. “You can mushy-mushy talk with your boyfriend. We’ll see you in the morning.” Donna joined him in saying, “We love you.” Both his parents got up, kissed Leo’s forehead and began heading up the stars.

    “Good night! Love you too.” Leo smiled as he watched his parents begin to ascend the stairs. His dad’s hips weren’t great anymore, plus he had to be careful about exerting himself because of his heart and lungs, so stairs could be difficult, so he took them slowly. His mother didn’t rush ahead, but remained alongside, gently sliding her arm around his dad’s back. Donna grabbed Josh’s butt. He squeaked, but then let out a low growl.

    Leo blushed and shook his head, but secretly hoped he and Marc would be like that at that age. They had only been dating for a few months, but Leo was completely in love. He wanted Marc to help him up the stairs when they were in their 70s and grab his butt. Leo was worried he was becoming too attached. He always did this with people he dated - it was a problem - but it was so hard not to be completely smitten with Marc.

    Leo answered the FaceTime call and Marc’s face appeared. “Hi there, Handsome,” Leo said, holding his phone and gathering his laptop and notebook.

    “Hi! Why you smiling?”

    “Because the man I want to grow old with just called me.” Leo winced. Maybe that was too much. Even if it wasn’t, it was so cheesy.

    Marc chuckled. “Well, if these exams have their way, that should happen by next week.

    Leo began to make his way down the stairs into the basement to his bedroom, glad to have privacy when talking with Marc. Knowing Marc… and himself, things were probably going to get mushy. Leo hated being away from his boyfriend. “You’re going to do fine.”

    “Leskey’s take-home exam is absolutely screwing me, and I’m not enjoying it, unlike when you screw me.”

    Leo tripped down the past few steps. It was bound to happen; balancing his laptop and talking to Marc.

    “Leo! Are you okay?”

    “Fine! Fine! I’m fine!” he shouted as he gathered up his laptop and notebook. Thankfully nothing broke, other than his ego. He could feel his face getting red.

    “You’re adorable, you know that?

    “Thanks,” he said, slipping into his bedroom. There were still Star Wars posters on his walls and a red and blue quilt. He flopped down on his bed so he could properly talk to Marc - he was so finished with studying for the night. “You’re pretty cute too.”

    “I’m glad you think so.”

    “You’re at my place, right?” Leo asked. The background on his screen was too dark to tell.

    Marc nodded. “Yeah, it is so much quieter here.” Marc lived with five other people. “I think I might move in.”

    “Really!” Leo squeaked. He had been trying to convince Marc to move in with him for a couple weeks now.

    “Yeah, I like it here. Though I do like it better when you’re here.”

    Leo sighed. “I wish you were here too.”

    “Do you now?” Marc raised his brow. “What would you want me to do if I was there?”

    “Cuddle me.”

    Marc chuckled. “Leo! I love cuddling with you but I’m trying to innate phone sex here! It’s my Hanukah gift to you this evening.”

  24. mavjade

    mavjade Former Manager star 6 VIP - Former Mod/RSA

    Sep 10, 2005
    Hahaha... yeah, that's something that Josh would never get rid of! I love his pouting that all the kids aren't there for the holiday. He's such an old dad and I love it so much!

    Good for her! I've always felt bad for people who have birthdays so close to other major gift giving holidays. My mom's birthday is mid December and she always said she was going to do half birthdays.

    [face_laugh] I know it really did other than that stuff, but it cracked me up in the "Other than that Mrs. Lincoln, how was the play?" kind of way.

    He makes an excellent point! But I love how much Leo is willing to show Josh and Donna that he really is smitten with Marc.

    It's little details like this that shows how in love they still are! And then Leo thinking he wanted to be like that with Marc when they are old... [face_love]

    [face_laugh] Oh Leo!! You are your father's child! And Marc totally did that on purpose!

    Off to read the PM part and I'm really excited!
  25. Briannakin

    Briannakin Former Manager star 6 VIP - Former Mod/RSA

    Feb 25, 2010
    I hope you enjoy it, even if it is a bit after the holidays. I'm going to try to post this one in fairly rapid succession - none of the chapters are too long (most of it is smut), and I want to try to get it posted before it's completely irrelevant. Plus I still gotta finish and post your fic-gift (which is almost done so I should start posting it on, or a bit after the due date).

    I love Dad!Josh, but Dad!Josh combined with Old-Man-Josh is just too much fun!

    I too feel bad for those who have their birthday in December (I'm pretty lucky as a June baby), but I think Abi wouldn't let anyone forget her birthday no matter when it was :p

    BAHAHA! Somehow, that just fits Leo so well

    Leo is so smitten, it's just adorable!

    I love how in love Donna and Josh still are, and Leo and Marc are going to be equally as adorable as an old couple!

    Leo is SOOOO Josh's, and yeah, Marc was just looking to make Leo blush!