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The West Wing 'Healing'

Title: Healing
spoilers: none for 3rd season only general second season and
ITSOTG,WKODHIB
Summary: Josh isn't the only one who needs healing after the shooting
catagory: slight Josh/Donna shipperness, Songfic
Notes: I've had this story knocking around my head since I saw
ITSOTG. I kept waiting for AS to give Donna and Sam some scenes to deal with Josh being shot and they've never really gotten those so I'm giving it to them.:) The
song used in this fic is 'Hero' by Enrique Iglesias no copyright infrigement
is intended.. This hasn't been beta'd so all faults are mine.
// indicate song lyrics

/Would you dance if asked you to
dance
Would you run and never look
back
Would you cry if you saw me
crying would you save my soul
tonight /


Deputy Chief of Staff Josh Lyman woke slowly subconsciencely testing
each nerve ending to see if it was going to
explode into pain. Realizing that only half of them were doing that
today Josh opened one eye and squinted at the alarm
clock on his nightstand....nine thirty.Josh sighed and rolled onto his back and stared up at the ceiling. One good thing about being a recovering gun shot victim
it allowed him to sleep in. The last time he had been able to sleep
in had been pre-college days.

After a few moments Josh slowly and gingerly pushed himself into a
sitting position. It was only then that he noticed that Donna's
usual note wasn't on the nightstand. Since he had gotten home from
the hospital Donna had always left him a note to tell him
where she was in case he woke while she was gone.
Josh did a visual search of the area around the nightstand thinking
the note might have fallen. There was nothing on the floor
or between the bed and the nightstand.

Okay that meant that Donna was still here or she had just forgotten
to leave a note.

"Donna?"Josh called out wondering why this was worrying him. Donna
had a life of her own she didn't need to tell him where she was every minute of the day.

Silence answered him so Josh tried once more in case she was just
coming in with groceries or something.

Nothing.

With a worried frown Josh reached for the cordless phone on the
nightstand Donna always let him know where
she was. He hoped everything was all right.Josh began to dial a familiar number. With everything Donna had done for him she deserved nothing but endless days of happiness.

/Would you tremble if I touched
your lips
Would you laugh oh please tell me
this
Now would you die for the one you
love Hold me in your arms tonight/

Deputy Communications Director Sam Seaborn had just stepped out of
the Capitol building when his cellular phone rang. Sam
pulled the device from his inside coat pocket and flipped it open.

"Seaborn?"

"Sam? Is Donna at work?"

Sam cupped his free hand over his other ear so he could hear Josh
better as he moved to a less crowded area of the
stairs. "She wasn't when I was there. But she could've gotten there
after I left for the hill."

"You at the Hill now?"Josh asked.

"On my way out now. Just left a very nonproductive meeting on
Medicare reform."Sam replied as he reached the bottom of
the stairs. "Are you feeling okay? Do you need me to get something?"

Josh shook his head as he replied. "No, I'm okay. I just wondered
where Donna was since she didn't leave a note. I'm sure
she just stepped out and forgot...."

Sam grinned. "Josh this is the same woman who set up 'the rules'.
I'll ask around and see if anybody knows where she is."

"Thanks Sam."Josh replied as he leaned back against the pillow.

"No problem."Sam assured his friend. "Try to get some rest. I'll stop
by with some lunch later."

"Okay."Josh acknowledged as he ended the conversation. He was
suddenly feeling very tired.

With the phone resting on his stomach Josh instantly fell asleep.

/I can be your hero baby
I can kiss away the pain
I will stand by you forever
You can take my breath away
Would you swear that you'll
always be mine /

Donna Moss stared out the car window as the highway stretched out in
front of her. She knew she should turn and head
back to D.C. Donna wasn't even sure how she had ended up on the
interstate.
When she had left Josh's that morning she had
planned on stopping by the West Wing for a couple hours and then head
back to check on her boss. Some how between then and now
Donna had decided subconsciencelessly or not that she needed some
time to herself, to clear her head. Driving was usually
what helped center her....gave her time to think but not today.
Today her thoughts as they had been since Rosslyn were a jumbled
mess. And she couldn't talk to Josh about them....he
needed her to be strong Donna couldn't break down....not now.....not so soon.....Josh had
just come home.

After passing a slow moving car Donna glanced at her cell phone
laying on the passenger seat. She should call and let Josh
know where she was.
Donna turned her attention back to the road.
She'd call in a few minutes.
A few minutes was all she needed.

/Would you lie would you
remember
My angel be have I lost my mind
I don't care you're here tonight
I can be your hero baby
I can kiss away the pain/

At one thirty Sam shifted the two bags of food to his left hand and
knocked on Josh's apartment door. He hadn't been able
to track down Donna and Sam knew that news wouldn't make Josh happy.
Not that Sam blamed his friend for worrying....Sam was starting to
get worried too. It was very unlike Donna not to let
somebody know where she is. Especially after Rosslyn.

Josh opened the door and immediately took one of the bags of food
from Sam as Seaborn walked past him into the apartment. "Is my burger in this one?"

Sam laughed. "Did you actually think you were going to get one?"

"Sam....after all I've been through after all the hospital
food....you bring me a...."Josh paused as he opened the
bag. "A salad? This is little more than rabbit food."

Sam placed his bag on the kitchen table before turning. "If I brought
you that charcoal thing you call a burger Donna would kill me ten ways from Sunday."

At Donna's name Josh instantly sobered as he approached the table and
placed the salad down on it's surface. "Any news?"

Sam sat down as he shook his head. "No. Nobody saw her this morning
not even Margaret."

"What about phone calls?"Josh asked anxiously pushing the salad
aside. He could feel that something was wrong. Donna would've
called long before now.

Sam pulled out a bag of luke warm french fries while saying. "She
didn't call in sick. Margaret checked with personnel no
temp was sent up."

Josh jumped to his feet a little too quickly as pain shot up his rib
cage. He ignored the pain as he moved to the closet
to grab his jacket. "That's it...I'm going out to look for her."

Sam stood. "Josh you're not well enough to go...."

Josh whirled around. "Don't tell me I'm not well enough, Sam! I've
been cooped up for months first in the hospital and
now here! Something's wrong with Donna and we both know it. She
hasn't left my side for more than a cat nap since I was
released and now it's been nearly six hours with no word and you
expect me to sit here and do nothing?"

"Yes."Sam replied calmly. "I'll let Leo know what's going on and then
I'll go out and start looking."

Josh shook his head fiercely. "Sam....I'm going with."

"No."Sam replied. "You need to be here in case she calls."

"Sam that's what they invented cell phones and call forwarding for."

"Just trust me and stay here."Sam stated firmly as he placed a hand
on his friend's shoulder. "You may think you're strong
but you're not. You just got out of the hospital after being
shot....Josh, stay here and rest."

Josh started to protest but relented as he felt his energy begin to
fade again. He hated that he was always so tired.

"Alright....but you call me...."

Sam nodded. "I will."

Josh met his gaze. "I mean it as soon as you locate her."

"I promise, Josh."Sam replied before the turned and left the
apartment.

/I will stand by you forever
You can take my breath away
Ohhh I just wanna hold you, I just
wanna hold you, oh yeah /

It was nearly six o'clock before Sam finally pulled into the parking
lot of the Harbor Court Hotel in Baltimore. It had just been
pure luck that a few well placed inquires had turned up a toll booth
operator who had remembered Donna passing through around
two that afternoon. They hadn't been sure that Donna knew somebody in
Baltimore or had just decided to get a hotel room but
they had done a search of the hotels anyway and found her registered
in one at the harbor.

Sam entered the hotel and took the elevator to the third floor. After
a few moments of searching he found Donna's room
at the end of the hall and he knocked. When Donna answered the door
Donna didn't appear to be that surprised to see him.

"Sam isn't there a crisis somewhere in the world you need to be
attending too?"Donna asked wearily as she opened the door
all the way to allow her friend entry into the room.

Sam smiled briefly. "Leo gave me the afternoon off from fighting
crisises."he replied as he shut the door behind him.

Donna sat down on the corner of the bed and Sam could see her eyes
were red rimmed from crying. "So you could track me down."

Sam pulled a desk chair over to the bed and sat down. "Did you really
think Josh wouldn't notice you were gone?"

At Josh's name Donna's eyes instantly filled with worry. "Is he okay?"

Sam nodded. "Physically yes. He's worried sick about you. You just
can't disappear on him like that Donna....especially now."

Donna dropped her head. "I didn't mean to be gone this long. I just
got in the car to go to work this morning and I decided I
needed some time to clear my head so I drove. I ended up here....it
wasn't planned."

"Why didn't you call him?"Sam asked even though he had an inkling of
what her answer would be. Donna had been with Josh
twenty four/seven since the shooting. As far as he knew she'd never
talked to anyone about what had happened at Rosslyn. Donna had
just leapt in with both feet and taken care of Josh just like she
always had. He needed her and she was there simple as that.

Donna stood and walked over to the window. "I meant to Sam I really
did. I didn't want him to worry. I just needed some space.....a little time to myself."

"He would've given you that."Sam stated."All of us would have if
you'd just come to us. None of us expected you to take
care of Josh all by yourself twenty-four hours a day."

Donna folded her arms around her chest as she leaned against the
window frame her gaze fixated on the harbor below."I
don't mind taking care of him, Sam."

Sam stood and closed the space between them. "Who's taking care of
you, Donna?"he asked softly.

Donna turned away from the window eyes bright with unshed
tears. "Josh is."

Sam tried to keep the dubious expression off of his face. He loved
Josh like a brother but Sam also knew him like a book
Josh could be a bear on the best days and when he was in pain the
gloves were off.

Donna caught Sam's expression and smiled. "Believe it or not he is,
Sam. This experience changed all of us and we're working
through it."

Sam touched her shoulder gently. "If you were Donna you wouldn't be
here."

Donna met his gaze and was touched by the concern she saw there. "I'm
okay, Sam."

Sam shook his head. "None of us are okay and we never will be. Josh
nearly died."

"Don't you think I know that?"Donna replied her voice strained almost
to the breaking point. "I watched as they pulled open his chest.....he was so pale.....all the blood....."

Sam swallowed hard fighting to keep the images of the shooting at
bay. It was bad enough that they haunted his dreams. He
reached over and pulled Donna into his arms.

As soon as she was pulled into Sam's comforting hug Donna broke down.
Everything she had tried to keep bottled up over the last few weeks finally broke free.

"Ssssh, Donna. It's okay just let it out."Sam whispered soothingly as
he lowered them to the floor so his back was against the wall
below the window.

Sam felt his own eyes wet with tears as Donna's small frame continued
to be rocked with sobs. It had been months since the
shooting and some days it felt like he would never get past it. Sam
had nearly lost two of his closest friends that day not
to mention that the President had been injured as well. He'd never
understand why bad things happened to good people.

"I thought he was right behind us."Sam heard himself whisper and he
felt Donna's sobs stop as she pulled back to look at him.

"Sam there's no way you could've known what was going to
happen."Donna replied her voice hoarse.

Sam nodded. "I know that in my head.....but I keep wondering what
would've happened if we had all been together. If Josh hadn't
been separated."

Donna placed a hand on Sam's left shoulder as she met his gaze. "Sam,
you saved CJ's life. If you hadn't pushed her down she
would've been hit too."

"He's my best friend, Donna and I didn't even realize he was hurt
until we heard Toby screaming."Sam continued as if he hadn't
heard her.

"Sam."Donna said forcefully until she was sure he was hearing
her. "Josh doesn't blame you."

Sam met her gaze. "I know and I know it doesn't make sense to feel
this way. I wasn't close enough to do anything and yet
I still think I should have protected him."

"You saved CJ and you walked away unscathed that's what mattered most
to Josh."Donna replied softly. "One of the first things
he asked me was who else had been hurt. You should've seen the relief
that flowed over his face when I told him that everyone
was just banged up and that nobody had been seriously hurt. Sam, it's
a miracle that all of you weren't killed."

"I know."Sam said struggling to regain his composure. Donna had
enough to deal with right now without him dumping his
feelings and nightmares on her. "I just feel like I've let Josh down."

Donna reached up and gently touched his face. "You haven't Sam.
You've been his rock. He treasures your friendship and it's
helped him get through this ordeal."

Sam laughed softly and shook his head.

"What's so funny?"Donna asked with a weak smile.

Sam shook his head. "Nothing. It's just I came here to make sure that
you were okay and here you are reassuring me."

Donna smiled. "Friendship is a two way street, Sam. You've been
dealing with a lot too."

"Thanks, Donna."Sam replied sincerely as he stood and offered her a
helping hand.

Donna grasped his hand and rose to her feet. "Thank you for
listening. I couldn't talk to Josh about it."

"He's stronger than you think."Sam replied as he reached into his
inside coat pocket for his phone. He had a promise to keep.

Donna nodded. "I just want him to get better. We can deal with the
emotional stuff once he's healed."

"It's going to be a long haul."Sam stated as he looked past her and
out at the harbor.

"I know."Donna replied her voice gaining strength. "And we'll be here
when he needs us."

Sam nodded as he turned away from the window and held up his
phone. "I promised Josh I'd call when I found you."

Donna looked over at the hotel room phone. "I'll call."

"You don't have to talk to him right now if you're not ready."Sam
replied. "I can tell him that you just need some time."

Donna touched his right arm. "It's okay. I'll call."

"Okay. I'll be downstairs in the restaurant when you're ready to
leave."Sam said as he walked toward the door.

"Thanks Sam."

"Any time."

/My angel be have I lost my mind
I don't care your here tonight
I can be your hero baby
I can kiss away the pain/

Donna sat down on the bed and picked up the phone. Her fingers shook
slightly as she dialed a very familiar number. Donna
hoped he could forgive her for staying away when he needed her.

"Hello?"Josh answered and Donna winced hearing the worry and fear in
his voice.

"Josh. I'm...."

"Donnatella, thank God."Josh replied feverently. "Do you have any
idea how worried I've been? You didn't leave a note."

"I'm sorry, Joshua. I never meant to worry you."

/(Oh yeah)
I will stand by you forever
You can take my breath away
I can be your hero
I can kiss away the pain/

Josh loosened his grip on the phone his knuckles were starting to
lose color "Why'd you disappear, Donna? Sam said they
found you in Baltimore."

Donna fiddled with the phone cord. "I needed to clear my head.....so
I just drove.....and I ended up in Baltimore. It wasn't
planned."

Josh winced as memories of his behavior over the last few weeks came
back to him. He hadn't been very gallant to say the
least. "I haven't been very sensitive to you lately, have I?"

Donna smiled at the sheepish tone of his voice. "You're recovering,
Josh. You're not supposed to be a hundred percent."

"But that doesn't mean I can get away with being a jerk to you."Josh
replied. "You've gone above and beyond the call by
taking care of me. That certainly wasn't in your job description when
you signed on. I know I haven't been very good at showing
it but I am grateful that you're taking care of me. I wouldn't have
made it this far without you."

"Don't sell yourself short, Joshua."Donna replied as she felt tears
threatening to flow again. "You're the Bartlet Administration
pitbull, remember? Nothing gets you down."

/And I will stand by you forever
You can take my breath away
You can take my breath away
I can be your hero/

"When are you coming home, Donnatella?"Josh whispered as he closed
his eyes He knew it was stupid....he was a grown
man... but right now he couldn't picture spending a night in this
apartment without her. He'd gotten used to her presence.

Donna stood. "Sam's waiting for me downstairs. I just have to check
out."

"Tell Sam I owe him one."Josh replied tiredly.

"I will."Donna assured him. "Get some rest, Josh. I'll be home soon."

end