Title:            Through A Fish Bowl Lightly
Author:           Rhonda
Characters:       CJ & Danny
Rating:           PG13
Spoilers:         Season Three
Disclaimers:      Not mine and never will be.
Feedback:         Always appreciated.


"Danny, what the hell happened to you?  And, while we're
talking, just where have you been for the last two years?"

"Geez, CJ.  It took me a year just to find my bags in the Portland
Airport.  You're a mean woman."
"Serves you right for making fun of the way I looked in that
Notre Dame cap.  Speaking of looks . . ."

"What, you don't like my leather jacket?"


"Yeah, the one I'm wearing."

"Sorry, I was distracted by a thing."

"What thing?"

"Your neck."

"What about my neck."

"It's gone."
"Maybe you should stop looking at me through Gail's bowl."
"No, it's no better this way.  If I turn my head sideways,
you're taller."
"Hey, my feet reach the floor."

"Where did your neck go?  I can see losing your head
but your neck?"

"Why do I need a neck?  Everything else is still present and in
working order."

"Show me."

"Here?  In your office?"

"No, you should wait and whip it out in the Press Room."

"You're joking.  See how I picked right up on that?"

"Put up or shut up Fish Boy.  Let's see the goods."

"I need to be wined and dined first, CJ.  I have my reputation
to protect."

"You don't have a reputation anymore Nimrod, you've been
gone too long."

"Hey, I had to help my brother Ed get his bowling alley off the

"I thought your brother was a lawyer?"

"Long story.  Let's get back to the sex."

"Who said anything about sex?"

"You were about to get to it."

"I was?"

"Yeah.  Maybe if you could lift your head up off your desk,
you could hold up your end of this conversation."

"I hadn't planned on having a conversation."

"Did you drink all the beer in your fridge by yourself?"

"Yeah, it's been a tough year."

"I heard."

"M.S., Haiti, snakes, subpoenas, fashion reporters, Indians in
the lobby, poets, butter cows, Qumar, super glue, mad cows,
wine corks, death threats - I haven't had any fun."

"You lost me with the butter cows.  Can we get back to
the sex?"

"I didn't have any."

"Butter cows?"

"Sex.  The last man I kissed got riddled with bullets."


"Danny?  Where are you going?  Danny?"



Title:            Through A Fish Bowl Lightly 2
Author:           Rhonda
Characters:       CJ
Rating:           PG13
Spoilers:         Season Three
Disclaimers:      Not mine and never will be.
Feedback:         Always appreciated.


"CJ, what are you doing?"

"Talking to Gail."

"Is she talking back?"

"Nope.  That's the beauty of our relationship.  I talk.
She listens and never, ever, asks any followup questions."

"Was that Danny I saw running down the hall?"

"Long red hair, leather jacket, no neck?"

"I saw the hair and the jacket. I don't know about
a neck."

"If you didn't see one, that was him."

"Where's he been for the last couple of years?"





"Your forehead's getting bigger."


"Your forehead is growing or your hair is slipping


"Claudia Jean, it is not.  I measured it.  Hasn't moved in
years.  Stop with the staring at me through that bowl.
You're drunk."

"Very.  But I can still see a resemblance between you
and Pokey."

"Now I know why Danny was running."

"He'll be back.  He was going for protection."

"Bulletproof vest or condoms?"

"Get out.  Go fight with your girlfriend."

"Can't, she's mad at me.  She thinks I'm insensitive
to women's issues."

"She's kind of slow picking up on that, Mi Amor.
Maybe you should date someone who has a better
grasp on reality."

"That's totally unfair, I'm sensitive.  I'm pro-choice,
pro-daycare, pro-nursing mothers in the workplace,
pro-equal pay, pro-lots of other girl stuff.  I even read
Donna's Cosmo.  I'm one of the best friends the women's
movement has in this Administration and I'm tired of
getting no credit for it.  Everyone knows how sensitive
I am.  What's wrong with you, CJ?  Are you on the rag
in addition to being drunk?"

"Go away.  Go away now.  Take your sensitive, ever
enlarging forehead and go bother someone else."

"I came in here for a reason, you know, not just to enjoy your
charming personality."


"I need a favor."




"Oh, come on.  I hardly ever ask you for anything."

"What is it?"

"Amy lost her job because I ratted her out to her boss.  I
got a heads up from Ernie in Security that Amy's meeting
with the First Lady right now.  I know she's gonna drop
by after, just to torment me."

"You want me to protect you?  Forget it."

"Nah.  I want you to help me make her jealous.  We could
roll around on your couch and let her catch us."

"You're crazy.  Go away before I have to hurt you."

"Come on, CJ.  Please.  I'll let you cop a feel of the boys."


"Hey, you can move your head!"


"Uh, you're scaring me there, Claudia Jean.  No, don't
get up.  I'll just head on back to my office now."


"Put the broken beer bottle down.  You don't want to get
blood on your carpet."



"Yes, Carol?"

"Why's Josh running down the hall?"

"Why does Josh do anything?"

"You have a point.  Uh, CJ?"


"Doesn't that hurt your neck?"

"Yes, but I like the view from here.  The most important
things loom large when seen through this fish bowl."

"Okay.  I'll just leave you with your fish."



"You might want to start using my exercise bike."


Title:            Through A Fish Bowl Lightly 3
Author:           Rhonda
Characters:       CJ
Rating:           PG13
Spoilers:         Season Three
Disclaimers:      Not mine and never will be.
Feedback:         Always appreciated.
Archive:          Sure, if you want it.


"Do you know you have a yellow sticky note on your


"I'll take that as a no.  What does it say?"

"Uh . . . You're depressing the fish.  Go home. Signed, Leo."

"Sounds like good advice."

"Toby, I don't have a home.  I have an apartment. 
The only living thing I'm responsible for is Gail and
a Ficus that's slowly turning brown.  My glamorous life
is just a facade.  I'm adrift without an anchor.  Just
a candle in . . ."

"Glad to see you're feeling better." 

"Compared to what?"

"Josh warned me you were having a mid-life crisis, so I
brought aspirin and Scotch."

"What do you mean mid-life?  Are you implying I'm no longer

"Uh, no.  But Sam assures me that it's common for women of
a certain age, I think he meant your age, to question their
remaining physical attributes and overall limited career
accomplishments.  He claims that it's perfectly understandable
why a woman in your position, without a husband and children,
would feel the need to take stock of her life and maybe readjust
her long term goals."

"Remaining physical attributes?  Certain age?"

"Uh, well, CJ, don't get upset at me.  I'm just repeating what
Sam says."

"Sam Seaborn?  Spanky?  Guy down the hall that uses more hair
products than I do?  Never had more than a first date, Seaborn?
That Sam?" 

"Yeah, but don't worry about your body.  Sam and I discussed that
physical attributes thing and I think I've convinced him that real
men don't expect perky forever.  At least not without some major
support.  Actually we've come to the conclusion that you've held
up rather well."

"You and Sam have talked about my . . . Listen buster, my
attributes are as perky as they come.  I'd show you if I
could sit up.  Don't try to cheer me up anymore, Pokey. 
And tell Spanky that I'm not having any mid-life crisis. 
I'm just depressed.  I'm certainly entitled after the year
I've had.  Actually, considering all that's happened in the
last three years, I'm overdue."

"I've never understood exactly why it is you call me that."



"It used to be a term of affection."

"And now?"

"It refers to your lack of mental agility.  You should have
realized by now that I'm in no mood to be cajoled, humored,
amused, or quoted Sam Seborn-isms about women."

"Uh, well, I'll just set this sack down here on your desk.
Should I open the aspirin bottle?  No?  Okay."

"Open the Scotch."

"Seeing all the empty bottles in your trash can, maybe you
should save the Scotch for another crisis.  Uh, sorry, another

"Come closer to the desk."

"I don't believe I will."

"It's just looking through this fish bowl, I notice things
I haven't before."

"Yeah, I've heard what you've said to the others who've ventured
near your crystal fish ball, uh bowl."

"I think you're getting a little paunch there, Tobias.  Kind of
looks like a bowl full of jelly when you talk."

"I'm leaving now, Claudia Jean.  Keep this up and you really will
end up all alone, a bitter, drooping, old woman with a permanent
crick in her neck."

"I'm not drooping."

"Sam says the pencil test is a good indicator."


"I'm leaving.  You should go home and be miserable there."

"Don't slam the door . . . Hell, Gail.  He didn't even give
me the good Scotch."

"I'm not having a mid-life crisis.  I'm not."

"Gail, do you think a ballpoint pen would work?"


Title:            Through A Fish Bowl Lightly 4
Author:           Rhonda
Characters:       CJ
Rating:           PG13
Spoilers:         Season Three
Disclaimers:      Not mine and never will be.
Feedback:         Always appreciated.


Squeak, squeak, squeak . . .

Giant mice was her first thought.  The second was that the
cheap Scotch, provided by Toby before he left in a huff,
was giving her auditory hallucinations.

Opening one eye, the very drunk Press Secretary looked past
Gail and towards her office door.  Nothing was there, just
the darkened hallway.  Okay, as long as she wasn't seeing
things, she'd probably live.

Squeak, squeak, squeak . . .

The noise was getting louder.

"Gail, something's coming.  You're on your own."

Opening both eyes, CJ tried to focus through the water in the
fish bowl on the blurry form that appeared in her doorway.

"What the hell?" she muttered, trying to raise her head off
her desk. "Lancelot?"

The figure in her doorway was wearing a suit of armor. 
Very shiny armor, she thought as it reflected the light
from her desk lamp back to her.

The knight raised his visor and a familiar Irish face peered
out. "I'm not sure about Lancelot, I think he was a little
prissy for my tastes.  He wore a lot of scarves."

"Danny, why are you wearing a suit of armor?" CJ moaned,
shutting her eyes against the glare.

"Wouldn't you rather know how I got through the metal
detectors?" he grinned, clanking towards her.

"Oh God," she moaned, the loud noise vibrating through her
head.  "Don't move, please."

The high pitched squeak of his arm picking up the half empty
bottle of Scotch, had her writhing in the chair.

"Did you drink all this while I was gone?" he asked, taking a
sip straight from the bottle.

"Yes.  Now, go away.  Quietly, please," she moaned, holding
her hands over her ears.

"I think you're missing the point here, CJ.  Besides the personal
sacrifice, I went to a lot of trouble to rent this outfit and talk
my way past the Secret Service.  You notice they kept my sword,
even after I told them the effect would be ruined.  Who ever
heard of a knight without his sword?"

"What personal sacrifice?  Your dignity?  You lost that a long
time ago."

"You wound me fair maiden," he said, as he executed a
noisy bow.

"Go slay a dragon and leave me alone," she begged, trying
to open the bottle of aspirin that Toby left on her desk as
part of his care package.

"Keep up, CJ.  We were discussing my sword, or lack there
of.  I can't slay a dragon without my weapon.  And, I can
see it's going to be tough to win the fair damsel."

"Danny," she whispered.  "My head is about to blow up. 
You really don't want to be here when it does, especially

"Damn," he said, trying to unlock his knees so he could sit in
her visitor's chair.  "This thing is chafing my family jewels."

Dry swallowing a couple of the aspirin, CJ tried sitting upright,
but her head was too heavy.  Giving up, she laid it back on her
desk and stared at him.  "Did you just refer to your . . ."

"Yep, my package is going to need some first aid, by the time
I get this outfit off."

"Why are you wearing it in the first place?" 

"I wanted to show you that I wasn't afraid of getting
involved with you.  If you want, I could wear this and
be sure of not catching a bullet.  Course, I'll probably
get some kind of rust disease or lead poisoning."

"Only if you suck on it," she said, laughing, and then
flinching as the movement made her feel like her eyes
were going to fall out.

"I'm serious, CJ.  Take a chance on me.  Take a chance
on us.  Ride off into the sunset with me on my trusty

"It's three in the morning, Danny.  The sun's already set."

"That's okay because I don't have a horse anyway."

"Huh," she asked, wrinkling up her nose.  "That doesn't
make any sense."

"And having a horse in the West Wing does?"

"What horse?" she said, rubbing her forehead.

"My trusty steed.  Or, in this case, maybe we could use
your Mustang."

Shaking her head, she immediately moaned and closed
her eyes again.  "Stop.  Skip ahead a few sentences. 
What do you want?"

"You," he grinned, bending down on one knee.

The squeaks had her clamping her hands over her ears again.
"Danny," she growled.  "Don't do that."

"I guess I should have oiled it," he sheepishly admitted.
"But I ran out of time.  It was almost impossible catching
a cab in this outfit."

"Danny," she moaned  "Get to the point."

"Marry me."

"Will you take off that tin can?"


"Right now."

"You bet."

"Okay, but if I hear one more squeak out of you, the
deal's off."

"Can I use your phone?" he asked, trying to maintain his
balance on one knee.  "I need to call out for some WD-40.
I think I know a mechanic that will deliver."


Title:            Through A Fish Bowl Lightly 5 - The End
Author:           Rhonda
Characters:       CJ
Rating:           PG13
Spoilers:         Season Three
Disclaimers:      Not mine and never will be.
Feedback:         Always appreciated.


"Don't look Gail," Danny warned, as CJ helped him out
of his suit of armor. "You're too young to see my goods."

"You wouldn't have to be worrying about anyone seeing
anything, if you'd left your underwear on."

"I wanted to be authentic," he whined as she yanked one
of the metal legs off.  "Careful, a inch to the right there
and you would have ruined our honeymoon."

"Do you want my help or not?" CJ hissed, leaning on the
desk as the room spun round again.

From his position on the floor, Danny tried to adjust
the metal above his crotch.  "I'm just pointing out, that
I'm not the only one with an interest in seeing that I
retain all my working parts."

"Danny, I really don't feel well.  Put up your other leg,
or shut up."

"Maybe we should have started from the top," he whined,
his visor slipping, as she tugged on his leg. 

"There," she exclaimed, as the leg gave way in her hand.

"What the hell?" Leo growled, from just inside her doorway.

They both turned to look at him; CJ, in yesterday's clothes
and the signs of a hangover on her face, holding the leg and
foot of a suit of armor; and Danny, wearing only a smile and
a metal breastplate and helmet, lying on the floor with one
leg lifted in the air. 

"It's not what it looks like," CJ responded, setting the leg
down on her desk, and sinking wearily down in her chair.

"It looks like you stayed here all night, drinking and fooling
around with Danny," Leo exclaimed, walking into the room
and resting his briefcase on the back of one of her visitor

"I guess it *is* what it looks like," CJ moaned, rubbing her

"We didn't actually get to the fooling around part," Danny
said, trying to be helpful.

"Maybe if you put some pants on, you'd be more credible,"
Leo retorted, his voice rising as he stared at the half-naked
reporter lying on the floor.

"Please," CJ whimpered, laying her head back down on her
desk.  "Just kill me and get it over with."

"Leo, we're engaged," Danny explained, successfully jumping
to his feet, but unfortunately failing to latch open his visor.
As he stood, it slammed shut and stuck.

As Danny danced around bare-assed, struggling to open it,
Leo grimaced and turned to CJ.  "You're really going to
marry this idiot?"

"I resent that," Danny said, his voice muffled by the metal
hood, as he continued to try to remove the helmet.

Ignoring him, an angry Leo stared at the President's worse-
for-the-wear Press Secretary.  "Well," he said, gritting his
teeth.  "Don't you have anything else to say to me?"

"I'm not seeing too well right now," she whimpered, looking
at the two men through the glass of Gail's fish bowl.  "Leo,
your teeth? - What big teeth you have.  And, Danny, no wonder
that suit was chafing you.  It's kind of like that wooden puppet's
nose, it's just getting longer and longer and . . .

"CJ," Leo shouted, causing the Press Secretary to jerk upwards.

"Go home and take your damn fish bowl with you.  I don't
want to see you, your fish, or your court jester around here,
until you sober up."

Grabbing his briefcase, Leo marched out of the room.

"And he huffed and he puffed and he . . ."

"Danny, shut up."  Getting to her feet, CJ grabbed her coat
and threw it at him.   "Put your jewels away and go home.
I've got to try and save my job."

"So, I should call you later and we can look at rings?"

Making a gesture to convey her feelings on the matter,
CJ stumbled out of her office, hoping to clean up a little
and then face the wolf in his den, uh, shaking her head,
Leo in his office.

"Gail, you didn't see that," Danny said, picking up the
fish bowl.  I'm sure she was just showing me her finger

The End