(An Alternate Version of In This White House)
Leo McGarry, White House Chief Of Staff, walked down the halls of the West Wing. Stopping in front of the Office of the Press Secretary, he took a long deep breath before stepping into the doorway. Inside he found Sam Seaborn, the Deputy Communications Director having a conversation with the owner of the office, C.J. Cregg.
“The two of you,” he said as he got their attention, “come take a walk with me.”
“What’s going on?” asked Sam as he followed Leo’s instructions, with C.J. a few steps behind him.
The veteran Chief of Staff didn’t immediately respond, thinking it was fortunate that he caught the two of them together. At least he wouldn’t have to do this twice. Waiting until they were out in the middle of the hall, he said what was on his mind.
“I wanted to tell you this out where there were people so you wouldn’t scream about it,” Leo said, wishing he were already on the way back to his office.
“Scream about what?” an already suspicious C.J. asked.
“The woman who was on Capitol Beat with Sam Sunday night...” Leo began to reply.
A few days before, Sam, as he had done many times before, had appeared on one of the Sunday Political Debate shows. Normally on one of these appearances, the Deputy Director of Communications wiped the floor with whoever the Republicans slotted to appear opposite him. Especially if his counterpart happened to be part of the more Conservative branch of the G.O.P.
To first his amusement, then his dismay, this time they had set him up with a young, rather attractive, but relatively unknown Political Activist named Ainsley Hayes. Not only did she prove to be a smart, knowledgeable and committed opponent, she was skilled enough to catch Sam off guard when he made a mistake and proceeded to mop up the floor with him instead. Even now, Sam remembered the words he had murmured to himself; “Please, oh please, let them not be watching.”
The ‘them’ being the rest of President Bartlet’s staff, and of course at least one of them had been watching. He learned later on his return to the White House that his friend and the Deputy Chief of Staff, Josh Lyman, had run into the office of Sam’s boss, Toby Ziegler and shouted:
“Toby, come quick. Sam’s getting his ass kicked by a girl.”
To which Toby, whom he also considered one of his best friends, replied by calling out to his aide, Ginger, to get the popcorn before following Josh back to the TV room.
Over the last few days, Sam’s performance, or perhaps his lack there of, had been a sore point for the Deputy Communications Director.
“What about her?” Sam asked, as if he could’ve forgotten about her so soon.
“I’m offering her a job,” Leo said, hurrying to get the words out.
“Where?” Sam interjected.
“Here,” the Chief of Staff said in a calm tone.
“Are you kidding?” C.J. said, her voice registering shock and dismay.
“No,” Leo simply replied.
“Are you kidding?” C.J. repeated, her voice rising in volume.
“No,” Leo again likewise repeated.
“Are you kidding?” C.J. repeated once more, her voice now more than doubling in volume.
“No!” Leo said once more, this time with an air of finality.
“Well, what the hell made you think I wouldn’t scream where there are people?” the six foot Press Secretary shouted loud enough to make everyone in hearing distance stop what they were doing and turn in her direction.
“Took a shot,” Leo said with a smile and a shrug of his shoulders.
“Leo!” C.J. retorted in the same loud tone, this time joined by Sam.
But having said his piece, Leo McGarry once again became the strong arm of the President and shushed their voices, leading them back to C.J.’s office. While he might not have fully agreed with the decision either, the President had decided he wanted the bright young woman hired, regardless of her Party or political outlook. And what the President wanted, his Chief of Staff would make sure that he got.
The funny thing about it all, he thought as he finally headed back to his office, he’d thought it would be Sam who had the most forceful objections to the new addition to the staff. He’d been surprised to find it had come instead from C.J.
A few days later, C.J. sat in her office at the end of yet another long and tiring day. The surrounding offices and desks were empty, with most of the staff attending a farewell. She wasn’t in the mood for a party. More specifically, she wasn’t in the mood for who she might run into at the party.
She had only had one run in so far in the past few days with the newest of the Associate White House Counsels and C.J. was thankful for that. She was even more thankful that during that brief encounter, Ainsley didn’t seem to remember ever meeting the Press Secretary before.
The tall brunette looked down into the drink she had poured for herself a few minutes earlier. It was rare that she drank in the office, but today she really felt like she needed it. The dark amber of the liquid reminded her of another drink in another city. One from another life, not so many years before.
The bar of the Revere Hotel was filled with the usual mix of Boston Cliques, one so different from the ones C.J. had become used to the last year in Los Angeles. Sometimes it was hard to realize that both cities were part of the same country.
They were so different, yet some things were universal. People young and not so young gravitated to places like this. Some came to try and meet that special someone that they could spend the rest of their life with, or only maybe just the next few hours. Others just came to drown their sorrows and maybe try to forget. At this moment, C.J. would have to put herself in the latter category.
Her problem was three thousand miles away, in a city where the sun hadn’t even set yet. Still, she couldn’t get it from her mind, no matter how hard she tried.
In the beginning, she knew taking the job at Triton-Day Public Relations had been a major mistake. Her real love had been working on the campaigns of local and state Democrats, trying hard to make a difference.
Still, it was hard to say no to Isabel when she offered her the position. Hard to say no to a house in Beverly Hills, or to a salary that could be almost half a million a year. In fact, the only real hesitation she felt at the time was because she and her new Boss had been lovers for the previous few weeks.
Yet in the end, she had proved herself adept in this strange new world. So much so that no one cared in the least whose bed she sometimes shared. That was the key word, C.J. reminded herself as she took a hard swallow of the dark drink she had ordered - ‘sometimes’.
Isabel was a faithless lover, and made no secret of the fact. At first, C.J. had been so taken with her that she didn’t want to believe that. Not even when people she trusted began to pass along late night gossip that they knew to be far more than rumors. No, she couldn’t bring herself to believe it, until the night she saw it for herself. The night she had practically had a front row seat to what a fool she had made of herself.
It had been one of the premier Hollywood social events of the season. One in which anyone not invited might just as well have closed up shop and moved out of town. Everyone who was anyone was at that party, and Isabel had approached it like a cat in heat. They hadn’t been at the party a half hour when C.J. realized that her significant other was nowhere to be found.
A wrong turn in search for the second floor bathroom had led C.J. to the door of a bedroom where she was sure she heard Isabel’s voice. It was almost like the plot of one of those horrible B-Movies that Triton-Day was constantly promoting. A peek behind that door forever ended the personal aspects of their relationship.
The voice had been Isabel’s alright, and she was far from alone. The woman C.J. thought she loved was spread out, disrobed, on the bed, accompanied by two young men as naked as she was. C.J. recognized both of them as up and coming actors, each the star of a newly released hit film. Triton-Day had been trying to work out a representation deal with the both of them for months.
At the moment, Isabel was practicing a most particular form of enticement, as she took one young man between her legs and the other in her mouth. From the look on her face, C.J. got the impression that Isabel was enjoying the negotiations as much as they obviously were.
From that day on, C.J. had become just another employee at the public relations firm, never again spending an intimate moment with her now lost love. The worst part of it all was that not only had Isabel not seemed to care, she hadn’t even ever asked why. Too good at what she was doing and actually beginning to enjoy it as well, C.J. wouldn’t give her the satisfaction of quitting. As long as she continued to keep the money rolling in, Isabel seemed to be just as happy with that situation as well.
Realizing that she needed to get away for a few days, if only to gain some perspective in her life, C.J. had jumped at the chance to spend a weekend in Boston. The Studios had asked for someone to participate in a televised debate at Harvard on the ever-continuing argument about there being too much sex and violence in movies and Hollywood’s responsibility to curb it. Not that the Studios planned to do anything to curb such things. There was too much money to be made with such movies. But by taking part in the debate, however, it gave the appearance that they were concerned.
Downing the last of her drink, C.J. cautioned herself that she had better slow down on the hard stuff. Otherwise she’d be in no shape to debate even the stuffy old windbags that usually sat on these panels, condemning the filth that passed for entertainment these days and at the same time, committing even greater obscenities in their business dealings. She was about to order something different when a soft-spoken voice interrupted her.
“Excuse me, but aren’t you Claudia Cregg?” said a young, long haired blond woman dressed in a white blouse and jeans who had stepped up behind her.
“I think only my mother calls me that these days,” C.J. smiled, “but yes I’m Claudia Cregg. What can I do for you?”
“My name is Ainsley,” the excited twenty-something year old said. “Ainsley Hayes. I’m in my last year at Harvard, Harvard Law that is, I got my Batchelor’s Degree back home in South Carolina.”
“Well with an accent like that,” C.J. smiled, “I really didn’t think you where a Boston native. So what can I do for you Ainsley Hayes from South Carolina.”
“Not much really,” the younger woman said, continuing in her own unique speech pattern. “I thought I recognized you and wanted to say hello.”
“You recognized me?” C.J. asked curiously.
“I’m one of the students on the committee that is co-sponsoring the debate tomorrow,” Ainsley went on. “In fact I’m on the show. I was here with some friends and saw you when we were leaving. I didn’t want to pass up the chance to meet you.”
“I didn’t know that the Agency had sent a picture along with their acceptance letter,” C.J. commented.
“Oh they didn’t,” Ainsley replied. “I remember you from College.”
“I went to Berkeley,” C.J. said a little confused, “and you said you went to school in South Carolina?”
“Oh I didn’t mean we went to school together,” the girl went on. “I meant that I was still an undergrad when I saw you in South Carolina. You were helping run the Whitmore Campaign.”
Pieces quickly fell in place and C.J. now knew what the girl was talking about. A few years back, she had been working on the Election Committee for Doris Ann Whitmore, who was running for the State Legislature down in South Carolina. It had been a rough election, with her coming from behind to close to a statistical dead heat with the incumbent.
“I take it you followed the campaign pretty well?” C.J. asked.
“Actually I did a study on it for my Political Studies course,” Ainsley said. “The view of which was how the media coverage of the candidate’s personal life eclipsed every other issue in the last week and decided the election.”
C.J. remembered that week well. Nine days before people cast their ballots, a story surfaced in the papers hinting that the relationship between Doris Whitmore and her long-term personal assistant went far beyond what was considered normal Especially in the conservative district she was running in.
No one ever came out and accused her of being a lesbian, but the implication was there. The story had been totally false, but contained enough facts that it couldn’t easily be brushed aside.
C.J. had been in a position to know a great deal about the candidate’s sexual preference. Then problem was that while Doris was decidedly heterosexual, the truth was that her assistant wasn’t. That Doris was in no way the object of her affections didn’t seem to matter to those who planted the story.
She did what damage control she could, but there wasn’t enough time. Doris had lost by an overwhelming margin that in no way reflected the last polls before the story broke.
“That’s what I want to do after I get my degree,” Ainsley said.
“Lose elections?” C.J. laughed.
“No,” the younger woman laughed back. “Be involved in politics.”
“Well it’s a tough field to get into,” C.J. offered.
“Oh I know that,” Ainsley replied. “But I think I have a good chance to Clerk at the Supreme Court after graduation...”
“The Supreme Court?” C.J. interrupted, “the one in Washington D.C.?”
“That’s the one,” a smiling Ainsley answered.
“I’m impressed,” the older woman replied.
It was becoming increasingly obvious to her that while the young blond might come off at first like a lightweight, there was something definitely stronger behind those eyes. And they were such beautiful eyes as well.
“I was wondering if I could buy you a drink?” Ainsley asked. “My Daddy always said that you appreciate someone’s work, you should always be willing to show it.”
“Sure, why not?” C.J. replied as she gestured to the empty stool next to her.
As she sat down, Ainsley made a gesture to the bartender and pointed to C.J.’s drink. The obvious indication was to give her a refill.
“Why don’t we make the next one a Grasshopper?” C.J. said as the bartender picked up her empty glass and she remembered what she’d been thinking just before her new friend had introduced herself.
“I’ll just have a Fresca,” Ainsley said to the young man behind the bar.
“You’re not drinking?” C.J. asked.
“I already had a few beers with some friends,” she explained, “and if I drink too much I just get sick.”
C.J. didn’t want to say what happened to her when she had too much to drink. Not when she was becoming much too aware of the curvature of the college woman’s breasts and how much of them were visible through the open buttons at the top of her blouse.
Twenty minutes later, C.J. found that she was right in her initial assumption that Ainsley Hayes was anything but a lightweight. Her memory was phenomenal, rattling off the details of a dozen election campaigns she had studied.
She also became aware that there was something else passing between them. At least she thought there was. If this was L.A., she would’ve been in a bar where it might’ve been more obvious, but the crowd here was so mixed that anything was possible. With as many drinks as she’d had this evening, she knew she could be imagining it all.
“I’d really like the opportunity to know you better,” Ainsley finally said in a quiet voice that carried many possible interpretations. After all, the young woman speaking those words was almost half C.J.’s age.
Those possibilities narrowed down to almost a certainty as unnoticed by either C.J. or the people around her, the future lawyer slid her hand along the bar railing and laid it on top of C.J.’s.
That simple physical contact, so innocent and yet at the same time so erotic sent a shiver through the older woman. A shiver centered between her legs. Forgetting that Ainsley had already paid for their drinks, C.J. dropped a ten-dollar bill on the counter and stood to her full six-foot height.
“I’m in room 1209,” she said to Ainsley, hoping that she hadn’t badly misinterpreted what had just happened.
“1209,” Ainsley repeated just loud enough for C.J. to hear, confirming that her take on the situation hadn’t been in error.
Ainsley finished her soda, giving C.J. time to exit the bar and take the elevator up to the fourth floor. Then, leaving the ten dollars as a tip for the bartender, she followed C.J.’s steps out of the bar.
C.J. barely had time to splash cold water on her face in the bathroom before there was a loud knock at the door of her room. She took a few moments to check her appearance in the mirror, then her blouse and slacks. The matching jacket to her outfit had been discarded the moment she was back in the room.
Reaching to unlock the door, C.J. had the briefest of hesitations. It wasn’t as if she felt any guilt about cheating on Isabel, that part of her life was definitely over. No, it was the fact that aside from her now former lover, it had been quite some time since she’d been with anyone.
“Hi Ainsley,” C.J. beamed as she opened the door and saw the younger blond haired woman standing in the hall.
For a moment, Ainsley returned C.J.’s smile. Then, without a word, she stepped right by the taller woman and into the room. Out of an old habit, C.J. leaned forward a little and looked up and down the corridor, making sure it was empty. No sooner had she did, she felt a little silly about it. After all, there were a hundred reasons as to why the young blond might be visiting her room.
Stepping back into her room and closing the door, C.J. started to turn around to face her guest. Ainsley took her by surprise and she abruptly threw her arms around the brunette and pulled their bodies together. Their lips met with a hunger C.J. hadn’t felt in a long, long time.
The press of Ainsley’s lips was electric, C.J. thought, there was no other word for it. Their softness exceeded only by that of her tongue as it slid effortlessly into C.J.’s mouth. The taller woman also became aware of an equally soft hand on her breast, caressing her nipple even through the material of her blouse and bra.
“Wow!” C.J. exclaimed as they lips finally parted.
“I think that people feel sort of awkward until they have their first real kiss,” Ainsley explained as she took a step back from C.J. and moved to the center of the room. “They try to act cool and all that, but all they can think about it what it’s going to feel like to kiss that person. After that, everything comes pretty natural. So I just get it out of the way in the beginning.”
“Not a bad idea,” C.J. said softly as she pressed her fingers to her lips, still tingling from Ainsley’s touch.
“Nice room,” the law student said as she took in her surroundings. “The school usually doesn’t spring for rooms this comfortable.”
“Well actually the Agency is...”
“So, do you have a lover?” Ainsley interrupted as she stepped back to C.J. and placed her outstretched hand on the center of C.J.’s chest.
“Well, I...” C.J. started to answer.
“Not that it bothers me if you do, if you’re cool with it and all.”
“Well I really haven’t thought...”
“Are we going to talk all night, or do you want to get naked?” Ainsley said as she pressed her lips against C.J.’s once more, this time kissing her just long enough for the sensation to register. “I don’t know about you, but I could use a bath.”
Again without waiting for a response, Ainsley began to unbutton her blouse, her fingers moving quickly until her bra and the bare skin around it were all that was left. Not missing a beat, she undid the center clasp of her simple bra and tossed that the way of her shirt.
C.J. looked enviously at the round firm breasts of the younger girl. The porcelain white skin and the small rich nipples that capped each one. It had been many years since the public relations expert’s own mounds had been that firm.
Ainsley didn’t seem to even notice that C.J. was staring as she slid down first her jeans, and then the panties beneath them. The absence of the latter exhibited a smooth shaved pussy. In less time that it had taken for her to say it, the smaller woman was totally nude.
“Well... ? she said as she finally noticed that C.J. was still fully clothed.
A moment passed as C.J. slowly reached up and started to undo her own blouse.
“Oh let me help,” Ainsley said as she started on the bottom button and met C.J. halfway to the top.
As C.J.’s top joined Ainsley’s on the floor, the young blond kissed the exposed top of the older woman’s breasts. She pulled down the cups, running her tongue across the larger, darker nipples beneath.
“Oh yes,” C.J. sighed at her touch, repeating it even louder as Ainsley took the whole nipple between her lips.
At the same time, the younger woman undid the clasp holding C.J.’s slacks. Soon they were down on the floor as well.
Without releasing her hold on C.J.’s breasts, Ainsley slid her hand down C.J.’s back, beneath the waistband of her light blue panties. Ainsley’s fingers tickled the cheeks of C.J.’s ass, then slid across her leg to the wetness of her mound.
“Oh God, yes!” C.J. moaned even louder as she felt two slender fingers slide inside of her, pressing against her clitoris.
Ainsley massaged the depths of C.J.’s sex for a little longer, then removed her fingers, closing them on the rim of the underwear, pulling them down C.J.’s long legs.
Sliding her hands back up those smooth legs, Ainsley paused just long enough to kiss the dark mound between. A mound rich with the scent of C.J.’s arousal.
“Mmmmmm,” Ainsley purred as she pressed her nimble tongue deep between the folds of the older woman’s sex.
“Oh yes,” C.J. signed in response, the soft pressure against her clit triggering a response across her body.
Ainsley guided her tongue back and forth a few more times, just enough to give both of them a taste of what was to come.
With a slight reluctance to leave her new prize, the blond haired young woman stood up and kissed her new love. C.J. pressed back hard, tasting the excitement of her own body on Ainsley’s lips.
“I think we’re ready for that bath,” the college student said after they’d exchanged a few more kisses.
The bath in the executive suite was equipped with both a stand-alone shower and a Jacuzzi, the latter of which was more than big enough for two. C.J. turned on the water to fill the large oversized tub while Ainsley looked through the small collection of complimentary bath products.
Finding the one she was looking for, Ainsley poured the contents of the white bottle into the tub. Then, leaning past C.J., she pressed the button that started up the water jets. Almost instantly, the liquid she had added to the water began to transform into mountains of suds.
“I love bubbles,” she smiled at C.J. before climbing into the tub.
C.J. followed her in, stretching out on the opposite wall. The two women just laid back for a minute, letting the hot water and bubbles wash over their bodies.
“Oh this feels so good,” C.J. said as she let herself be carried away by the experience.
“Well I know how to make it feel better,” Ainsley laughed softly as she turned her body and slid up alongside the taller woman.
Their bodies now covered with layers of suds, they pressed against each other, their wet skin causing them to slip and slide. Soft hands explored each other’s bodies, covering every inch of the exposed flesh.
C.J. and Ainsley sat up on their knees, each taking a large handful of bubbles and washing the breasts of the other. Nimble fingers caressed twin sets of hard nipples, squeezing the supple flesh around them as well.
“Oh baby,” Ainsley said as she wiped away enough of the soapy film to take C.J.’s nipple into her mouth, “you are so hot.”
Releasing the nipple, the younger woman stuck out her tongue and traced a line around C.J.’s darker areola. With a spirited eagerness, she tickled the stubby nub again and again. Her other hand continued to massage the matching globe beside it. C.J.’s own hands continued to explore Ainsley as well, sliding one hand beneath the water and between the blonde’s legs.
Holding onto each other, they shifted position once more, this time with Ainsley pressing against the side of the tub, her breasts over the rim and C.J. pressing up against her back.
C.J.’s hands started at Ainsley’s neck and slid then down her the smaller woman’s back and then around her waist and up to her breasts. Soft kisses now followed the path her hands had just blazed, starting at the lobe of Ainsley’s ear, then her neck.