When the President Calls

Chapter 2

Tuesday December 23rd, 2003
Waldorf, Maryland
Toscano Townhouse
4:38 p.m.

Frowning Sara looked up from where she was somehow managing to cook the chicken breast without racing to the bathroom. Hearing the knock on her door once more she sighed before turning the heat off. If it was Mormons or Jehovah Witnesses again, she’d be tempted to scream. She wasn’t a church person, and yet seemed to be the human magnet for every religious group to come and tell her about their beliefs to try and persuade her.

“Can I help you?” she asked as she opened her door before raising her eyebrows in surprise. “John?”

“Hi Gina,” John grinned sheepishly. “Sorry to bother you, but I’ve sort of been kicked out of the house for the night…”

“Your sister and brother-in-law kicked you out of the house you live in whenever you’re home on shore-side duty?” Sara asked skeptical.

“Okay, so they didn’t kick me out, I left so they could have a night with just each other. So…can I steal your couch?”

Sara laughed while shaking her head, “Sure, Jen deserves a night with Michael, come on in. I was being brave and experimental and cooking chicken.”

“Ah, our soon to be reformed vegetarian is cooking meat…want help?” John asked with a smile

“God please,” Sara grinned as they headed towards the kitchen, John dropping a bag by the front door.

John laughed out loud as they stopped in front of the stove, “Well, it smells good, what did you do?”

“Grilled it with lemon and lime juice. Have a Caesar salad to go with…just waiting for it to finish…”

“Ah, well I think your experiment went well,” John smiled as he looked at the salad mixture in a bowl, and the dressing waiting in a separate bowl. “Lettuce, tomatoes, beets, pickles, are these almonds?”

Sara glanced over at him and smiled, “Saw them at the store, they’re Caesar flavored almonds. And croutons, the beets are pickled and they’re bread and butter pickles.”

“Interesting,” John nodded. “Ah of course, fresh Parmesan.”

“Of course,” Sara smiled as she took the chicken out of the pan and put it on the cutting board.

“Ooo, big knife!” John grinned as she picked up the cleaver.

“Keep it up and I’ll be cutting something else,” Sara smirked before turning to cut the chicken.

“Dang woman, you know how to use a knife, don’t you?” John asked seconds later when she was done cutting the meat and using the cleaver to push it into the bowl.

“My parents had a bed and breakfast, was using knives when I was eight.” Sara shrugged, leaving out the fact that the business went under two-years-later.

“Ah, surprised you don’t experiment more,”

“Normally I suck at creating things,” Sara shrugged as she grabbed a spatula and poured the dressing into the bowl before using the spatula to mix it all together. “So, salad?”

“Sure,” John grinned, “Want me to get something to drink for us?”

“Sure,” Sara smiled as she grabbed two plates and headed towards the table with them and the salad. “Cupboard on the left of the sink. There’s water, soda, juice, and Ice Tea in the fridge.”

“What would you like?” John asked as he opened the fridge.

“Ice Tea please, it’s unsweetened if you want some, I prefer adding my own sugar in the glass,” Sara answered as she grabbed silverware and napkins.

“That’s a good plan, that way in case you have company you don’t have to worry about having different tastes in the amount of sugar,” John smiled as he joined her at the table with two glasses. “So, to experimenting with dinner,” he continued as he held up his glass.

“Here’s hoping I didn’t create something that would make us both sick,” Sara countered with a smile before tapping her glass against his.

“This is really good,” John began after taking a bite. “Really good.”

“You’re right it is,” Sara smiled, “Chicken and all.”

“Chicken and all,” John laughed. “So what should we do after dinner?”

“Well I was planning to watch a movie actually,” Sara shrugged.

“Ah what movie?” John countered and they started discussing movies. After dinner they made their way to the couch and settled down to watch a few movies, only leaving to run out for ice cream and munchies before settling down for more movies.

Thursday December 25th, 2003
Norfolk, Virginia
Peters Residence
6:45 a.m.

“All right Jen, all right, I’m up,” laughed Michael sleepily. “You can stop poking me now, you know.”

“I know,” replied Jen as she poked him once more.

“Okay, that’s it,” Michael swore as he rolled over, grabbed Jen and started tickling her like mad.

“Uncle, uncle, I give up,” laughed Jen finally getting Michael to stop tickling her after a few minutes.

“John?” asked Michael from where he had collapsed on the bed next to Jen.

“John,” replied Jen with a wicked smile on her face before getting out of bed, Michael hot on her heels.

“He’s not here,” commented Jen in confusion when they were standing in John’s empty bedroom.

“Well, where do you think he could be?” asked Michael. “Downstairs already maybe?”

“Maybe,” agreed Jen with a shrug as they quickly made their way downstairs towards the living room.

When Jen and Michael entered the living room, they weren’t exactly expecting the sight that met their eyes. John was sitting on the couch, his head fallen back against the wall fast asleep with Sara lying down next to him, her head on a pillow in John’s lap, John’s hand on her shoulder. Sharing a surprised look between them they turned back to the two sleepyheads before both crying out “MERRY CHRISTMAS!!!”

“Ahhh!” Sara shrieked as she sat up before falling to the floor. “I'm awake, I'm awake!” she continued quickly.

“Trust us, we know,” John chuckled as he rubbed his face. “I think you just woke the folks too.”

“Go away!” Sara groaned, “It's too early...”

“No it’s not, it’s Christmas,” replied Jen innocently.

“Blah, it's not even seven in the morning, come back when it's closer to...oh, say eleven,” Sara countered as she pulled herself back up the couch.

“Ooo, we have a sleeper,” Patricia laughed as she and Kevin joined them. “Sadly you can't do that in this family. Trust me, Jen drilled that out of me by the time she was eight.”

“Oh brother,” Sara grumbled before yawning. “Alright, alright, I'm physically awake, give me a few hours to be mentally awake, till then...I may seriously take forever to open anything. You've all been warned...”

“Get this woman some coffee and she’ll be good to go in no time,” laughed Jen. “Come on Michael, let’s go get that coffee going,” she said as she started pushing her husband from the room.

“I'll go get the muffins started,” Patricia grinned before following them.

“And I'm going to actually get my housecoat now that I know there's no fire,” Kevin laughed

“Good morning,” John smiled once they were alone again.

“Uggh, remind me why we were up until four?” Sara groaned before grabbing the pillow and curling up on the empty half of the couch.

“Cause you had to wrap gifts and so did I,” John smiled. “Girl, you look so uncomfortable it isn't funny,”

“Ehh, it's comfy,” Sara countered.

“Hah! I'll believe that the day my sister throws away Cinderella,” John shot back before reaching over and pulling her by her shoulders. “It's called the fact you slept with your head in my lap, isn't going to phase me now so get comfortable.”

Shrugging Sara re-maneuvered on the couch, “Normally, I so would not be taking you up on this, but I'm half asleep and being woken up on one of the few days I am tired, I'm not saying no to comfort.”

“Don't you look comfy,” Kevin grinned when he returned to find Sara now lying on her back, her head once more on a pillow in John's lap as her feet dangled over the arm at the end of the couch.

“I'm tired and trying not to be cranky, using your son as my personal pillow is somehow helping with that,” Sara shrugged.

“Hey, I'm not arguing,” Kevin smiled before going to grab the digital camera and stealing a picture of the two as he sat in one of the recliners.

“Coffee’s here,” commented Jen as she and Michael returned from the kitchen with a tray of mugs. “Black for John, black with sugar for Gina, and cream no sugar for Dad,” she said as she handed out the coffee mugs from the tray Michael was holding before taking her own and sitting down in the opposite couch and snuggling up to her husband as he sat down next to her with his own mug.

“Thank you,” Sara grinned, sitting up enough to take a sip before lying back down.

“Mom said we don’t have to wait for her,” Jen said.

“I'm here, muffins are in, so let's get started,” Patricia grinned before heading towards the fireplace and taking down the stockings, one with Cinderella for Jen, a Dragon one for Michael, Wizard for John, one with a plane on it for Kevin, her own had a Christmas Cat, the only odd one there, and one with an angel that she handed to Sara. “Figured we'll use this till we get to know you better,” Patricia winked before joining her husband, stealing the arm of his chair.

“Okay, who bought the hillbilly teeth?” Patricia asked as she held up a set from her stocking.

“Wasn't me!” everyone answered before grinning as she just shook her head.

“Was seriously wondering when I was told to get three silly things per person for stockings,” Sara chuckled as she pulled out a mini deck of playing cards from her stocking. “Now it all makes sense.”

“Oh hey, drink umbrellas!” Kevin laughed as he pulled out a set.

“Now that's cute,” Michael laughed when he saw Sara with an umbrella tucked behind her ear and a pink plastic lei around her neck.

“All I'm missing is a hula skirt and a drink for these umbrellas,” Sara smirked.

“Ohh, now that is something we so have to do before the boys go back to sea, Luau!” Jen grinned.

“In the middle of winter?” John laughed. “God, my sister is nuts,”

“Ah, but you love me,” Jen grinned. “Ooo, beyond King size Hershey Bar!” she exclaimed pulling it out of her stocking. “Heaven!”

“Oh, here here,” Sara grinned pulling out her own.

“May want to watch that chocolate intake, we had too much,” John grinned.

“Yup, horrible on the teeth,” Michael continued as everyone looked at them before they started cracking up, both men had their hillbilly teeth in.

“Okay then, on to gifts!” Jen announced when they had all emptied their stockings.

“Oldest first Dad!” John grinned

“That was last year, I say it's time the youngest went first,” Kevin argued.

“So that would be Jen right?”

“I'm only ten minutes younger than you Jonathon,” Jen rolled her eyes.

“Something tells me that Jen isn't the youngest,” Michael chuckled as Sara looked at the ceiling as if it was the most interesting thing in the world. “So when's your birthday Ms. Toscano?”

“September,” Sara answered vaguely.

“September...when?” John countered.

“Seventy-one...” Sara grimaced.

“Yes! I'm not the youngest anymore!” Jen laughed

“Gina it is then,” Patricia laughed. “So who's going to be Santa this year?” she asked as she grabbed a Santa hat off the tree.

“I will!” Jen grinned before the hat was tossed her way, fixing it atop her head, Sara laughed when she saw the Mouse ears on either side. “Hmm, now to find a gift for Gina...Aha!” she continued finding a box.

Once the small box had been passed her way, Sara set to opening it, removing each piece of tape individually before carefully unwrapping it and folding the paper back up. “Oh for the love of God, woman! Open the box! And say who it's from!” Jen declared exasperated.

“Bite me,” Sara countered with a smirk.

“Okay,” John grinned before grabbing the hillbilly teeth and pressing them against her arm.

“Ewww!” Sara and Jen groaned.

“Anyway,” Sara began rolling her eyes, “it's from your brother,” she continued to Jen before returning her attention to the box as she opened it. “Oh wow...” she whispered before lifting a silver chain bracelet from it.

“I picked that up at one of the ports in the Mediterranean. Thought you might like it,” John explained with a shrug.

“Thank you,” Sara smiled softly.

Hours later all the gifts had been opened, Patricia was looking at her new Entomology textbook from Sara, having expressed an interest during their talks, occasionally commenting on something and getting Sara's opinion. Kevin was playing chess with Jen with her new Disney set, Jen the good guys, Kevin the villains. Michael and John were discussing new movies while Sara was still lying with her head in his lap as she watched the new movie Jen had gotten her, Jen having insisted they watch it, not believing Sara had never seen Aladdin.

“I think Jen's determined to introduce me to Disney,” Sara mused as she watched the Genie sing about how Aladdin had never met a friend like him.

“It's the official welcome to the family,” John laughed. “Although, you do kinda remind me of Jasmine, probably why she picked those ones.”

“If you say so,” Sara shrugged before grabbing another bite of her lemon poppy seed muffin.

“He's right,” Jen spoke up as she stole one of her father's pawns, a.k.a. Ed the Hyena, with her knight, a.k.a. Hercules. “Jasmine was strong-willed, didn't take anything from anyone, refused to let people tell her what to do, with a gentle spirit under it all. If that isn't you...” she shrugged. “Hey! That was my Queen!” she cried a second later and her father just smirked. “Poor Belle,” she sniffed. “Oh that's it; I'm so after Cruella now,”

“Hey leave my Queen alone,” Kevin countered with a laugh.

“You know, after this I may start to actually like Christmas,” Sara chuckled. “It's one heck of a great introduction to Christmas.”

“Give us a few more years and you'll be as much an addict as the rest of us,” Michael countered with a smile and Sara just shook her head before turning her attention back to the movie

Thursday December 25th, 2003
Norfolk, Virginia
Peters Residence
5:08 p.m.

While Jen and her dad played chess and John and Sara sat watching movies, Michael and Patricia made their way into the kitchen. As hard as Patricia tried to get Michael to go spend time with Jen he insisted on helping create the feast everyone was now sitting down to enjoy. There was roast turkey and glazed ham, about four different types of potatoes, mixed steamed vegetables, stuffing of course, but there was also a nice pasta dish since Sara was still working her way back into eating meat again.

Conversation over dinner covered almost every possible topic, and eventually they were sitting with coffee, cider, or hot chocolate and pumpkin pie in the front room.

“So how does it feel to be back in DC, Gina?” asked Michael as he wrapped an arm around Jen’s shoulders.

“Interesting honestly, freezing,” Sara smiled. “I came from eighty degree weather to high sixties...only to have it get colder,” she continued with a slight shudder.

“Hence the nice warm sweater I gave you,” commented Jen with a smile.

“Hence the reason I'm already wearing it,” Sara laughed. “How have you been handling the weather change? You came from the nice warm Mediterranean,” Sara smiled as she looked between the two men.

“Yeah but we’ve had the chance to adapt to the change over a number of days as we sailed back. You had what five hours? There’s a difference between changing temperature in hours to days,” commented Michael. “Besides, I have someone to keep me warm at night,” he smiled.

“Ah, so that's the key. Damn and here I suck at relationships,” Sara snapped her fingers. “Oh well, maybe it's time to get a dog or something.”

“Don't worry, Honey, the right guy is out there for you,” Patricia smiled.

“As they say, you've already met the man you're suppose to spend your life with, so maybe you know him already,” Kevin continued.

“Maybe,” Sara nodded; lost in thoughts of the one she'd left in Vegas

“It might even be the last person you expect,” commented Jen, seeing the look on Sara’s face as well as that of her brother.

“Maybe,” Sara smiled slightly, determined to not think about those she’d left behind and simply enjoy the holiday. “Okay, I need another piece of pie, anyone else?” she asked as she sat up.

“I’ll come with you,” offered Jen as she got up. “I want more cider anyway.”

Sara waited for Jen to join her before they headed into the kitchen; she headed for the pumpkin pies and cool whip while Jen headed for the pot of cider. “You’re thinking about him, aren’t you?” asked Jen as she leant back against the counter.

“About who?” Sara asked as she looked up from her cutting.

“The guy you left back in Vegas,” replied Jen.

Sara glanced away before sighing, “I didn't leave a guy back in Vegas...last guy I dated in Vegas was a year ago and he was using me as the other woman...”

“I don’t buy it,” commented Jen, shaking her head. “It was more than just the call from Eagle that sent you flying back here. Look Gina, I’m not going to push you on this but I just want you to be careful around John.”

Sara sighed before turning to look at her friend, “Alright, there was a guy in Vegas...my boss,” pausing Sara bit her bottom lip before continuing. “I've known him five-years and been in love with him almost as long. I took a risk a few months ago, asked him out. He turned me down flat then told me he 'didn't know what to do about this'. But he wasn't the only reason I left, let's just say everything was falling down around my ears and I'd worn out my welcome there.” Pausing Sara turned back to her pie once more. “It's slow going but I'm determined to get over him, it's just taking a while.” Frowning as the rest of Jen's statement registered in her brain Sara glanced back at Jen, “What do you mean 'be careful around John'?” she asked genuinely confused.

“After the way Michael and I found the two of you this morning, I’ve been watching John. He has this look about him that I haven’t seen since Meghan. About five years ago, John met a girl by the name of Meghan Chalmers and it didn’t take long for him to fall completely in love with her. He was so in love with her that he never saw the warning signs, so that when he proposed and she rejected him, it nearly killed him. It’s taken this long for him to finally get back to where he was before he met her. Don’t get me wrong Gina, I think you and John would be great together but if you don’t think you can see yourself with him long-term, please let him know that now, before he gets too involved,” Jen said quietly.

Sara opened and closed her mouth a few times before shaking her head, “Jen...I...God, are you serious? Your brother...Oh God...” she rambled in shock.

“Yes Gina, I’m serious. Just think about it, okay?” asked Jen as she made her way from the kitchen.

Wednesday December 31st, 2003
Washington D.C.
The White House
11:45 p.m.

Six days later found Sara and Jen on detail at the White House, as the Bartlet family enjoyed a New Years Eve Party with family and staff. One of the rules Zoey had insisted on was that they each bring someone to spend the night with, so Michael and John were there as escorts, Jack having brought his sister.

Over the past six days Sara had tried to stay away from John for the most part and in turn Michael and seeing Jen only at work as she tried to figure out just what to do about what Jen had said. Unfortunately, her plans didn’t work so well as John appeared on her doorstep more than one night with pizza, her introduction to beef on a pizza with pineapple, mushrooms, black olives and onions; ingredients for his famous Chicken Marsala another.

All in all, Sara had been left very confused. Part of her was still dealing with things relating to Grissom, but at the same time, she knew she could fall for John very easily. He treated her as she’d never been treated before…like a princess, quite frankly. He was funny, sweet, kind, caring and smart. Not a genius like Grissom, but he could still challenge her mentally. They’d had a trivial pursuit marathon one night, and he had come pretty close to beating her. He was computer smart, exceptionally so, and knew a good deal about American history, having a fascinating collection of information about Jack Kennedy. He had the best stories about traveling through the world and growing up a military brat, and wasn’t grossed out by her own stories about some of the more interesting cases she had dealt with, in fact being very curious about them, and how they were able to solve them. Of course she never gave names, and even tended to avoid naming the other people she had once worked with.

She didn’t want to hurt him though, and quite frankly she didn’t know anymore if she could be in a relationship. Her past in that department was quite lacking. Her first ‘boyfriend’ as it were, was Ken, and he was only using her for the sex. Hank had been using her as the other woman, and Griss…well, she wasn’t sure what he got out of flirting with her when he would only turn down the chance to go further. She’d probably never understand just what it was he was thinking. She’d grown up thinking she wasn’t loveable, learned the hard way that you could only depend on yourself, and here was this man who seemed ready to fight the world for her…she honestly didn’t know what to do.

Sara had repeated herself numerous times to John to insure he knew that the night wasn’t anything more than friends, but she also couldn’t help fearing that he was thinking it might be more. Smiling she let her attention drift from her problems when she spotted Zoey and Charlie on the dance floor, not far from where Jen was dancing with Michael as midnight approached. Earlier she had been sharing company with Kate since they were the only two there without any real relationships going on of all the agents there. Kate had been pulled away though for a talk with the agent who would be in charge of the new Eagle detail…

“May I have this dance?” John asked from behind her, causing Sara to spin around surprised.

“I need to keep watch...” Sara offered and he looked up before glancing around.

“Gina,” he began with a smile, “It's New Year's Eve. You need to dance at least one dance before midnight. Don't make me go get Jen, Mike and Zoey to back me up,” he teased.

Rolling her eyes Sara sighed before turning to locate Jack. Letting him know she was going to dance, she turned back to John and shrugged. “One dance,” she compromised.

“Of course milady,” John smiled taking her hand before leading her out to the dance floor as the music changed.

Sara didn't really pay attention to the country melody playing, her attention focused on the feeling of John's hand at her waist, the other holding her own hand as if it was the most fragile flower, intent on not crushing a petal. Glancing up, she found him watching her intently, but not in a way that made her feel like running for the hills or anything. More like someone's most cherished possession. Then she heard the chorus of the song.

Well you had me from hello
I felt love start to grow
The moment that I looked into your eyes
You won me

It was over from the start
You completely stole my heart
And now you won't let go
I never even had a chance you know

You had me from hello

Sighing softly Sara just let herself enjoy the moments, slowly leaning into John's embrace until he had her hand with his over his heart, and her head was on his shoulder.

Inside I built a wall
So high around my heart I'd thought I'd never fall
With one touch, you brought it down

The bricks of my defenses scattered on the ground
And I swore to me that I wasn't gonna love again
That last time was the last time I'd let someone in

“Jen, look,” Michael said softly pointing towards Sara and John.

“They’re perfect for each other,” commented Jen just as quietly. “I just hope Gina opens her heart to him and gives him a chance. I think he could make her really happy.”

“I agree,” replied Michael. “They make a beautiful couple.”

That's all you said
Something in your voice caused me to turn my head
You had me from hello
You had me from hello
Girl, I've loved you from hello

The countdown to midnight began, though neither Sara nor John heard as the song finished, the final lyrics echoing in her mind. Glancing up at John she made a decision in her mind and heart. She didn’t know what tomorrow may hold, but she was tired of living in the past, giving her heart to a man who seemed to only want to break it. She wouldn’t wait for Grissom anymore…here and now, she was going to give this a chance. Give life a second chance. Give love a second chance…

“…3…2…1… Happy New Year!” everyone cheered, neither John nor Sara noticed, as they shared their first kiss.

Monday March 22nd, 2004
Norfolk, Virginia
Norfolk Naval Station
9:15 a.m.

The next eleven weeks flew by for the two couples all too quickly. Matt Santos was inaugurated as President on the twentieth of January, the Bartlet family officially leaving office, and with them many of their staff. Though some stayed behind to serve Santos. One of the first things President Santos did was extend Zoey's detail until she finished college, ensuring Sara and Jen jobs for the next few years at least.

Sara and John's relationship had progressed, under the happy view of Jen, Michael, Patricia, Kevin and even those of the Bartlet family who knew Sara well. More often than not John could be found sound asleep on Sara's couch then at the place he called home with his sister and brother-in-law when morning came. And now as his and Michael's return to ship had arrived, Jen and Sara were both heartbroken to be seeing them off.

“So your couch or mine?” asked Jen as she and Sara slowly made their way back to the car after the ship had left port.

“Yours, mine reminds me of John too much,” Sara sighed before waving at Kevin and Patricia as they reached their own car a few vehicles away.

“Well, my guest room is still available to you, you know that,” laughed Jen as they climbed into her car.

Sara laughed softly as she shook her head, “Thanks but no. I have a rosebush waiting for me to come home and care for it. I still have to wonder who would leave a rosebush in the planter box on their deck when they move out,” she continued shaking her head.

“Well, then I guess it’s a quiet night for me with my local take-out provider and Cinderella,” sighed Jen.

“Oh no, you get me tonight girl, and Cinderella gets to share you and me with ice cream and my chocolate chip cake,” Sara countered with a smile. “Just saying I'm not going to move in, love you dearly girl, but we still both need our space.”

“Deal,” smiled Jen as she pulled out and headed back towards her house.

To: [email protected]
From: [email protected]
Subject: Hey sweetheart
Date: 22 March 2004 0015 EST


Hi, how are things back home? Things here on ship are good, we’re about halfway across the Atlantic now, and Mikey is sound asleep. Something tells me he and sis didn’t get much sleep last night. Then again neither did we huh? I can’t believe we talked for ten hours. I can’t believe I’m still awake. I really need to get some sleep though, first call comes early. Have a wonderful night Gin. Sweet dreams.



To: [email protected]
From: [email protected]
Subject: Re: Hey Sweetheart
Date: 22 March 2004 0030 EST


You can’t believe you’re awake, I can’t believe I’m awake LOL. Yes your sister crashed hours ago, she fell asleep during Cinderella if you can believe it. You’re parents came with us back to the house though, wanted to spend some time up here – we weren’t expecting them to until we looked behind us and found them there when we were passing through Alexandria. Needless to say we stopped at the next Denny’s and were going WHAT are you doing here?? There’s a new exhibit at Air and Space your dad wants to see. Your dad crashed a few hours ago too. Now, your mom though…I now know where you get your talking gene from ;-) Not that I’m complaining, I know all your embarrassing childhood stories now ;-) Now, what’s this about Captain John Silver? It would appear you and Houdini really were best friends…which, I still can’t believe you got me to hold him. I thought for sure he was going to bite me. Or ‘christen’ me as your mom puts it :-)

Oh, by the way, you are not going to believe this! Kate resigned! And now she’s working over at NCIS with your mom. (I’m still not sure which I was floored about more, the fact she actually resigned from POTUS and SS as well, or that she’s working for GIBBS of all people! (Although it’s interesting, got to meet him finally after hearing stories from your mom all this time about him…he’s one weird guy but at the same time…genius mind when it comes to investigation.). Met the rest of the team though…poor Kate has to deal with a complete jerk…that DiNozzo guy…God John, he is a complete chauvinistic pig like they say…although, it was hilarious. Gibbs just reached over and whacked the back of his head when he made a comment about Jen and I being total babes and why didn’t Kate bring around more of her good looking friends more often. (Of course, then Kate, Jen and I got a hold of him after Gibbs was done ;-) ) Also met Abby Sciuto (she’s the forensic specialist for the team). She talked me into being someone she can call when she’s got a question that’s plaguing her that she can’t figure out right away for a case…didn’t I leave my CSI life behind in Vegas???

But I need to get to sleep too. Good night and sweet dreams.



P.S. We know too many people named Abigail…. :-)

To: [email protected]
From: [email protected]
Subject: Oh no!
Date: 25 March 2004 1631 EST

Hey Sweetheart,

Tell me my mother didn’t tell you EVERYTHING??? Then again, knowing her…she did. LOL. Bet Dad is enjoying the new exhibit, Mike and I wanted to see it too, but we’ll see it when we get home. :-)

Didn’t I tell you that Houdini was a great bird? Sure he’s a blue-fronted Amazon, but he is 39 years old, so he’s very calm, all things considered. He knows he’s loved as well so…but really Sweetheart; you’re a natural with him. :-)

Tell Kate hi for me and to not let this DiNozzo guy get to her. Though I suspect she’ll put him in his place easily enough. And he better watch what he says, Mike and I will help clean up what’s left of him if he makes a comment like that again after you and Jen get done with him ;-).

Things here are good, sorry I didn’t write back yesterday. Busy busy after all ;-). Oh great, got to go, Mike is demanding the laptop. Have a great day Gina.



To: [email protected]
From: [email protected]
Subject: You’re nuts!
Date: 28 March 2004 0845 EST

You do know that right… :-)

Not even going to ask what makes me a natural as you put it, I was terrified I was going to drop the bird or something LOL. But if you say so…

Sorry it’s taken a while to write back, we were with Zoey while she and Charlie went to see a show on Broadway (which your sister was in heaven about of course). Saw The Phantom of the Opera…very nice show. The entire way back to the hotel I had one of the songs stuck in my head and now have been forced to go and buy the Soundtrack. LOL. Your sister is doing the “snoopy dance” that she’s got me going down the path to the Dark Side (a.k.a. Musicals and Disney obsessions LOL).

Oh by the way, finally met Alicia and Thomas. They say hi by the way. They couldn’t believe all they had missed while on that cruise and visiting his family in England LOL. They’re insisting on Jen and I coming over for a BBQ next week and we’re supposed to bring all the pictures from the last few months and they’ll have theirs back by then. Save me!

Need to run though, have dog hair in places I didn’t know dog hair could reach. Still trying to figure out how the hair got up under my pants and on my legs. They’re talking about getting another dog can you believe it? They already have eleven small dogs…(now that is an obsession ;-) )

But really going to go, have a good day John.



To: [email protected]
From: [email protected]
Subject: You just now realized I’m nuts??
Date: 31 March 2004 2045 EST

Hey Sweetheart,

Just wanted to send a quick message to let you know that yes, I did get your last e-mail. We’ve been busy with maneuvers and such, been simply crashing when I get back to the room. Yes, you are a natural with Hou, but we’ll work on that later ;-). Ah, so she’s dragging you down the path of Musicals…lol. Enjoy the freedom while you can ;-). Have to tell me which song it is that you got stuck in your head ;-).

Tell Thomas and Alicia hi back for me, and tell them DON’T GET ANOTHER DOG! Know what you mean about the dog hair LOL. Enjoy the BBQ though Sweetheart, need to run and get some sleep.



To: [email protected]
From: [email protected]
Subject: Happy Easter!
Date: 7 April 2004 1029 EST

Hey John,

Sorry took a while again, Easter holidays in New Hampshire with the family LOL. Then we got back home to have a belated Easter with your parents who were waiting for Jen and I in Waldorf. (The two of us are still trying to figure out how they got a key lol)

Sounds like you are busy, but knowing the two of you, you boys are enjoying your flight time :-) Too late for the dog statement, they’ve got a full dozen now. A Shih Tzu named Cinderella. (Well she’s half that, half Boston Terrier, looks like a Shih Tzu, just WAY bigger than Candy.) Cinder is of course your sister’s new favorite of the dogs, and is a black and white. Personally I adore Patty Cake. Never saw a brown and tan Dachshund before her LOL. But really now, how do they come up with these names I must wonder. I mean sure, Cookie is the right name for a chocolate dapple Dachshund. But Sheba for a silver dapple Dachshund? Candy for a blue Shih Tzu, Twinkle Toes for a Chihuahua (who I seriously want to hurt, she has a MAJOR licking fetish). Now Ewok is a good name for that little one, although personally I never thought of crossing a Pomeranian with a Shih Tzu…but she’s so small and somehow just looks like those Ewoks on Star Wars LOL.

Oh and then of course there is Tina, once again who in their right minds would purposely cross a Dachshund and a Cocker Spaniel? Well yes, it was a standard dachshund instead of minis like the rest of the group, but still? Oh and do you think they’d notice if their Bichon Frise went missing? I’m not kidding John I wanted to kill Mamma Mia…she can drive a saint to drink. And I’m no saint! Then again, if I kill Mamma have to kill the nutcase Poodle. I don’t know who is worse, Cookie or Trish when it comes to them being DETERMINED to be in laps. -sigh- Oh and Hippo…that dog is a heater unto herself…but honestly now, doesn’t she look like a Mexican Hairless? I mean yes she’s a Chinese Crested…but she looks just like a Mexican Hairless LOL

Okay who was left…I know there was another dog…oh, Bessie. Now she is the one I like LOL. She’s so cute when she brings those toys to you. And somehow long-haired Chihuahuas are so much cuter than the short haired (like Twinkle) course it could be because I swear she looks just like a miniature (way mini) Collie :-) lol.

Anyway, the BBQ went fairly well, got introduced to pulled pork, yes I know, a shock of shocks, I ate something that was related to a pig LOL. Your sister was sitting there with her mouth hanging open for five minutes – until Twinkle decided to give her kisses and basically Jen got French kissed by a dog LOL (Jen was so not enjoying that moment LOL).

Oh and Kate was invited to the next BBQ, Abby called for advice while we were there and Kate came in the lab (Abby’s of course) to find out an update and said hi over speaker phone and it sorta snowballed from there when Alicia found out that she had to deal with this complete ass at work. Why do I suddenly suspect I’ll be attending a number of BBQs in the future??

Need to run though, have to get ready, Zoey and Charlie have a date tonight and Jen and I are on detail. Need to get some rest before we go. Have a good day and hope you got your Easter package :-)



To: [email protected]
From: [email protected]
Subject: Back at you ;-)
Date: 14 April 2004 1345 EST

Hi Sweetheart,

It’s REALLY a bit late, but Happy Easter back to you ;-). And yes, got the package same day Michael got his. Thank you for the cake :-) we have a very jealous group of shipmates now ;-) but the two of us enjoyed every bite of your famous cake ;-)

Things are busy as always, though we have been able to visit ports and such, Mike and I have been on the hunt for gifts, you’ve been warned ;-)

Going to run though, Mike is wanting the computer. We need to get a second one I swear.



To: [email protected]
From: [email protected]
Subject: Hey you
Date: 31 April 2004 1835 EST

Hey babe,

So Jen and I just learned something interesting today. The Bartlet family is going to Disney World in June. Your sister is in heaven that we get to protect Zoey at the ‘most magical place on earth’ – her words of course.

So may not be on for a while, we’re in major planning mode and arranging everything, but will definitely tell you all about how your sister tortured me at WDW. Save me John!! :-)

Going to run though, have to get to a meeting at seven with Ron. Night and Sweet dreams



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