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Post Ep | Romance | General | Drama


The Longest Car Ride ~ 9

"I am so dreading this," CJ said as the four walked out of the elevator and back towards the ballroom where the President and Leo were waiting.

"I'm sure it won't be as bad as you may think, Claudia Jean," Josh said from behind her.

"There you are," Jed said when saw them.  "Sit down.  Now."

CJ simply gave Josh a look and sat down. 

"You wanted to see us, sir?"  Sam said.

"Yes, I did.  Did I, by any chance, tell you a specific time frame for you to have arrived here?"  He looked at the four as if they had all just failed a test.

"Well, you said anywhere between one and four to be exact, sir," Toby said.

Jed narrowed his eyes at him.  "And what time is it now?"

Toby looked at his watch.  "It's 8:00."

"Uh, no Toby, it's 7:00," Sam said.

"What?  Sam, look at my watch.  See the numbers?  It's 8:00!"

"Well, yes in Washington, DC it's 8:00.  We're in Chicago...Central time zone."

Toby rolled his eyes.  "Whatever."

"Whenever you two are done chatting, I'll continue," Jed said as he crossed his arms.

Sam and Toby gave him their full attention.

"Now, I don't remember telling you to be here at 6:00, did I?"  They shook their heads, no.  "Okay.  Then why are you here so late?"

"Well, sir, to be quite honest, we took a sort of scenic route..."  Sam began.

"Oy vey," Josh said.  "Not again."

"Are you trying to tell me that you got lost?" 

" really depends on what you mean by 'lost,'" CJ said.

Leo looked at her.  "I don't think he's amused by that."

"I can speak for myself, Leo."  He paused.  "I am not amused by that."

Leo rolled his eyes.  "Sir, can't this wait?  We have to go over a few things tonight while the four musketeers are still awake."

Jed looked at him.  "Hush."

"Yes, sir."

"Now, where was I?"  He asked himself outloud.

"You were telling us how happy you were to see that we got here safe and sound," Josh said.

"Funny boy.  Just for that, I am giving you this to read."  He handed Josh a rather thick book.

"What's this?" 

"Open it and find out," Jed said, amused.

"'Latin For the Everyday Person.'  Oh come on!  Sir, this is ridiculous!"  Josh whined.

"If you don't hush, I am going to make you read a book on National Parks too."

"You already gave me an extensive lecture on those, sir," he said quietly.

"Yeah, yeah."  He sighed and looked at the others.  "So what really happened? Where were you?"

All four began to talk at the same time.

"STOP!"  Jed yelled.  "One at a time.  Sam.  You first."


"Do you see another Sam in the room?"

"No, sir."

"Well, then I guess that I do mean you."

"Yes, sir."  He took a deep breath.  "Well, to make a long story short, we took a couple of wrong turns, then the car broke down, then we got caught in the pouring rain, then we couldn't find a parking spot..."

Jed nodded.  "How vague." 

"What?!"  Sam said, shocked.

"Next.  CJ."

She sighed.  "Well, like Sam said, we started off just fine, but then when we saw we were headed to Tulsa, we turned around.  However, before that, the car decided it didn't want to go any further and..."

"Died."  Toby said flatly.

"Toby, did you change your name to 'CJ?'"  Jed asked with a stern look.


"Then let the real CJ finish.  Go on, CJ."

"Thank you, sir."  She gave Toby a look.  "Anyway, the car had a couple of problems, but I fixed them and then--"

"*You* fixed it?"  Jed looked amazed.

"Yes, sir, I did."  She had a proud look on her face.

"All right.  Good.  Next."  He looked around.  "Josh."

"Well, I slept most of the way, so--"


"Hey!  I could have contributed something here."  Josh argued.

"Josh, will you do me a favor," Jed asked.

"What's that, sir?"

"Shut up."

"Yes, sir."

Toby looked at Jed, who nodded at him to begin speaking.  "As I was going to say, after we got the car fixed..."  CJ cleared her voice.  "After CJ fixed the car," he said quietly, "we continued on our journey.  We ended up driving through a rather heavy rainstorm, much like the one that is going on outside right now."

"Hate to break it to you, but it's snowing," Jed said.

"Chicago," Sam mumbled.  "Never can predict the weather."

"Whatever," Toby said.  "Anyway, we had to drive slowly so we didn't get into an accident."

"After that, we finally got here," Sam finished.

Jed nodded.  "All right.  That was...interesting, to say the least.  You'll be glad to know that I'm not making you drive back--"

They all breathed a sigh of relief.

"Until the day after tomorrow," he finished.

Their sigh turned into a look. 

"Um, sir?"  CJ said.


"Why couldn't we have just flown on Air Force One with you and Leo?  We would have gotten here a lot sooner."

"I wanted you all to bond."

"Trust me, we have," Josh said.  "We're all best friends now."  He put his arm on Toby's shoulder.

"Get your arm off me," Toby said without looking at Josh.

"Right."  He took his arm off of his shoulder.

"Well, I think I've tortured you enough for one night," Jed said.  "You may all go to your rooms."

"Thank you, sir," they said in unison.


"Ready for that fun journey back home," Sam said, trying to sound upbeat.

"Can't wait," CJ said flatly.

Josh looked at his watch.  "Has the President left already?"

"Yeah, he left forty minutes ago.  Where were you?"  CJ asked.

Josh shrugged. 

"Let's just go," CJ said as they picked up their bags and headed for the door. 

Once outside, they nearly dropped their luggage.

"You have got to be kidding me," Toby said.

"Looks like we are going to have a long drive ahead of us," Sam said with amusement.

"Shut up!"  The others yelled as they trekked their way to Sam's car which was buried in six inches of snow.

"This is going to be a long, long, long day," Toby said as he started to open the back door.

"Toby, I wouldn't--"

"Sam, I know how to open a door."  He opened the door, and as he did, snow from the top of the car fell on top of his head.

CJ, Josh, and Sam couldn't help but to start laughing.

Toby sighed and got into the car, making sure to give everyone else a glare. 

"Well, like you said, Toby, it's going to be a long car ride," CJ said with a small giggle.

They cleaned off the car and slowly drove out of the parking lot and onto the open road, back to Washington, DC.


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