Little Things-Post-ep for Ways and Means (Jed's POV)

By Ginny K.

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Disclaimer-They are not mine, and I promise to put them back unharmed.

Note-This piece also answers the challenge on the JAB board about how the pen
got into Jed's pocket each morning.

This and all my other stories can be found at

Ever notice how everything in life seems to be made up of little things.  Not
little things like atoms and molecules, although that's fascinating in itself
I just don't have the energy to think of such things at the moment.  

It's late; Abbey's asleep in the bed and I, as usual am still awake at
midnight. So I'm wandering the halls of the White House in my pajamas and

What I'm thinking about are the little things that happen everyday.  Things
we take for granted.  Thing we don't even notice when they are happening but
we are certainly sure to notice when they don't.

Over the past few months so many of those little things have been missing
from my life.  And I'm just starting to notice them, or rather, notice their

When I sat down at Mrs. Landingham's desk today, I realized it was the first
time I sat there, ever.  It was her desk; I had no reason to sit there.  And
then she was gone and I could barely bring myself to walk by it, let alone
sit down in the chair.

It took me a better part of the day but I did finally figure out how she got
the pen in there everyday.  Before I would walk over from the residence I
would always throw my coat on over my head.  My kids tease me about putting
on my coat that way.  I tell them it is not good manners to make fun of the
President of the United States.  They don't particularly care.  

Anyway, I would walk to the Oval Office, take my coat back off before I sat
down and got to work.  I had the habit of just tossing it on the nearest
surface, the couch, the chair, the desk.  When Mrs. Landingham would come in
with my coffee she would always cluck her tongue at me and tell me that it
wasn't a good idea for the President to go around rumpled.  Then she would
pick up my coat, smooth out the wrinkles and hang it up, apparently slipping
a pen into the pocket each and every morning.  And I can't believe I never
noticed it.

There are other little things she always did, things that Charlie has taken
to doing without even being told.  Like making sure I take a few minutes in
the afternoon to relax and put my feet up.

Fixing my tie, although Charlie doesn't actually fix it for me, he just
motions to my tie and the nearest mirror and I get the hint.  

He's started to bug me about eating vegetables too.  I would like to yell at
him for that, but that somehow seems disrespectful to Mrs. Landingham's

Charlie's even tried teaching me to use the intercom but I think that's a
lost cause.  Even he's starting to realize that.

There are plenty more little things that have been missing lately.  Little
things that Abbey did.  Things I miss terribly but am too stubborn to talk
about them.  Too stubborn to tell her how much I miss them.

She used to always call me before she went to bed.  No matter where she was
or where I was, she would call.  Many times I was busy and only got a message
but that didn't matter.  The fact that she called was what mattered.  Now,
I'm lucky if I talk to her each day.  I'd like to put all the blame on her,
but that wouldn't be fair.

I miss the way she used to always snuggle next to me when I got in bed, no
matter what time that was.  She didn't even have to be awake; I would crawl
into bed and she would reach out to rub my back for a minute.  

If we woke up in the same bed she would always get up with me and have a cup
of coffee in the morning.  Even if it was practically the middle of the
night.  She would just go back to bed after I left.  

She used to stick notes in my pockets, my briefcase, my desk drawers.  
Haven't had one of those in a while now.

I could always count on her to yell at me when I snuck outside to have a
cigarette.  She hasn't noticed that lately my 2 a day habit has inched slowly
towards a half a pack a day.  It hurts that she doesn't even notice.

I miss the way she would look at me when I wandered back to the residence
after a long day.  Without me even saying anything she knew what I wanted,
whether it was to make love, take a shower, get a back rub, or take some
Advil and go to bed, she always knew.  I suppose she still knows what I need
but just doesn't feel like doing anything about it.

I thought things were getting better since we returned from Manchester. But I
realize now, that most of what went on while we were up there was for show,
for the public.  

Most of things that I've been missing lately are little things.  But take
away a lot of little things and you're left with a big void in your life.

There's nothing I can do to bring Mrs. Landingham back, I wish there were.  
That void will never be filled, so I will try to be the man she would want me
to be.  I want her to be proud of me.

As for Abbey, we still have a long way to go to get back to where we belong.  
So many little things need to come back and be a part of our lives.  Deep
down, I believe we are making progress.

One little thing at a time.

I climb into bed next to her and stay still for a moment, waiting to see what

And then she moves over, puts her hand under my shirt and rubs my back.

It's just a little thing; but it means the world to me.