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29 June 2008 @ 07:15 pm
I'm such a dork but I am so excited about the sequel to It Ends Tonight that I can hardly write it.  So many ideas are running through my head in this extreme whirlwind of activity where everyone is talking at once and I cant keep up!!  I gotta say as much as I love writing, it has been really been a while since its been this kind of whoopdee-doo.

The plan is to read two more chapters of Neverwhere tonight and break the 100 page barrier.  That will be a sure sign if I'm going to get through.  I know when I see Joe on Tuesday he is probably going to give me books to read for the Fall issue of the magazine but the deadline for that will be the end of August so I have plenty of time to procrastinate.

Here's another story for you.  Its the last in the OMG CJ has a tumor story arc that I did my damndest not to turn into an episode of Falcon Crest.  I think I handled it well.  Take a gander, and as always feedback is ambrosia for my soul.

Title: Hovering and Recovering
Author: Montiese
Category: Humor/Friendship
Characters: CJ, Greg, Toby, Nora
Pairing: CJ/Greg
Rating: YTEEN
Summary: “Do you know how many of my fantasies are being realized with you two in that
                   bed together?”
Author’s Note: This is #20 in the To Love Again series. Tegratol is a real medication,
                          while Pretodan is not.

“You're upset with me.”
“I never said that.”
“You really think you need to say anything?”
CJ and Greg were in the back of a chauffeured Lincoln. They were leaving Memorial Sloan-Kettering and going back to their Upper West Side condo. She had been in the hospital for five days. During that time, Elliot removed the malignant tumor in her brain. She was put through a battery of tests afterward…eyesight, balance, memory, MRIs, and PET scans. CJ did quite well. The doctor was still concerned about seizures, which could be a side effect of any surgery on the brain. 
She did not have any in the hospital but Elliot told Greg to keep an eye on her. He also was not thrilled that the patient refused preventive radiation. Yes, it looked as if the cancer was gone, but the cells could be quite tricky. They could come back quickly and spread even more so. Still, CJ did not like the idea of making herself sick in hopes of staying healthy. The tumor was removed and that was good enough for her. She was 67 years old; was ready to let go and let God about the rest.
“I am not mad at you.” CJ turned, taking Greg’s face into her hands. “I am no longer going to let little things get to me, Greg. I love you so much and I know you're concerned.”
“Very concerned.” Greg replied.
“You cannot coddle me. I understand, I do, but it’s going to drive me up the wall.”
“I don’t know if I can make you that promise.”
CJ smiled, kissing his lips.
“Dr. Elliot Bradshaw is one of the foremost cancer specialists in the country. He felt it was alright to release me from the hospital and I am going with his gut feeling.”
Greg nodded. He didn’t say anything for a while, taking her hand and holding it tight in his. She was going to be alright. He prayed and God answered his prayers. Now he had to do his best to relax.
“You want to say something.” CJ broke the silence.
“Say it, I can handle it.”
“OK. It’s Wednesday; I just want you to rest for the rest of the week. On Saturday afternoon I will take you to brunch at your favorite place, and maybe some shopping.”
“Shopping?” his wife smiled as she cuddled in his arms.
“Mmm hmm. But another three days of relaxation. Please Claudia Jean, ease my mind.”
She nodded, kissing his temple. The car stopped and the driver got out opening the back door. The small amount of press outside the building did not surprise CJ.  They had been at the hospital too. The doorman did a good job of keeping them at bay; the former Second Lady did not answer any of their questions. Greg did his best to shield her from the camera glare as he did earlier. He feared the flashes might be harmful so soon after surgery.
“They are going to harass me until I talk.” She said on the elevator.
“Getting better is priority number one. The press can wait.”
They got off the elevator and went home. CJ was glad to be back where she belonged. There was a note on the foyer table from Nora; she carried it with her to the couch. Mommy’s return overjoyed Buttons…CJ cuddled with her baby in her lap. ‘Brunch is warming in the oven.’The note read. ‘Dinner is waiting in the refrigerator. We love you much and will visit tomorrow. Toby and Nora.
“We have food.” CJ said, kicking off her loafers and lying on the couch. Buttons remained in her lap while Jack lingered at her feet.
“I see that.” Greg replied from the kitchen. “You hungry, cookie?”
“A little, but I am rather tired.” CJ sighed. “When am I going to get my strength back?”
“Soon,” he came out of the kitchen, helping her from the couch and into the bedroom. “You don’t have to push. I know you want to but you really don’t have to.”
CJ laid back on her pillows, Buttons was close by. A feeling of warmth and security surrounded her at home. She hated the hospital. She wanted to be with Greg and not have to worry about dying anymore. It didn’t take long for her to drift into dreams.
“Hey there.” CJ’s tone was drowsy. Coming out of sleep the first face she saw was her best friend…a comforting one indeed.
“Did I sleep long?”
“Long enough for Toby to hand Greg his ass in an intricate game of chess. I wanted to wait until tomorrow but he really wanted to see you today.”
“Is he still here?” CJ asked.
“Mmm hmm. They’re in the living room. Oh hey, I need to apologize for everyone finding out and just showing up at the hospital.” Nora said. “Donna really had to talk Charlie down.   He was bringing Marine One.”
“It’s not your fault; you kept my confidence.” CJ took hold of her hand. “Call Toby.”
“Call him?”
“You have your cell phone.”
Nora flicked her phone from her hip. She knew her husband was not carrying his so she dialed the Brock’s house phone.
“Hello.” Greg answered.

”CJ is awake. She wants to see Toby.”
“Alright. Tell her I'm making her something to eat.”
“Gotcha.” Nora closed her phone. “Greg is making you something to eat.”
“Good, I'm starving. He’s hovering.”
“Are you going to give him a hard time?” Nora asked.
“Claudia Jean…”
“I hate it when people hover. You know that.”
“You had a tumor removed from your brain. I understand where Greg is coming from. Just be nice, and give him some time.”
“Yes ma'am.”
“Do you know how many of my fantasies are being realized with you two in that bed together?”
“Hey Tobus. Get over here.”
“You're such a dirty old man, Toby.”
“Damn right.” he sat down on the bed, accepting CJ’s hug and kiss. “How are you feeling?”
“Lethargic but fine. I expect the tiredness will pass in a few days. The press is circling.”
“I don’t think the Botox story is going to fly.”
“I'm trying to figure out who to talk to.” CJ replied. “I'm going to have Donna put out feelers on Friday; see who wants it the most. Because they all want it.”
“$50 says People offers the most money.” Toby said.
“It’s going to be US Weekly.” Nora countered.
“To hell with US. They never left Leo and I alone when he was Vice-President. They printed those photos of my children and then hid behind their First Amendment banner when we wanted them removed. I wouldn’t give them an exclusive on shit.”
“Don’t work yourself up.” Toby said. “You need to rest, CJ. Nora and I will go; you'll eat, and then relax.”
“Have you and my husband been conspiring?”
“I don’t know what you're talking about.”
“Sure you don’t.”
“C'mon sugar,” Toby stood and held a hand out for his wife. 
“Get some rest.” Nora kissed CJ’s forehead. “Donna and I will pop in tomorrow but won't stay too long.”
“OK. Love you Nora.”
“Love you too sweetie.”
“Love you CJ.” Toby gave a little wave.
“I love you. See you soon.”
“I brought you Sleepy time Tea and a glass of water for your medicine.”
“Thank you honey.”
CJ spent most of the day in bed. She was not in the mood for the colors and noise of television so Greg put Itzhak Perlman on the stereo. It was soothing. She leafed through her favorite magazines, More, Self, American Photography, and Time, had some visitors, lunch, dinner, and apparently needed more sleep. She would not bicker with Greg about it because she was too tired.
“Did you walk Jack?” she asked, taking the pills he handed her. One was an anti-seizure medication, Tegratol. CJ was not fond of it. She did not experience seizures and did not want to take it. The side effects were scary but Elliot assured her if she was seizure free when she returned for a checkup in two weeks, he was going to wean her off. She was also on Petrodan to bolster her immune system and took Motrin for the thud in her head. CJ didn’t feel bad, she just felt rundown. She hoped that didn’t last too long.
“I'm going to take him around the block.” Greg replied. “Are you alright?”
“Mmm hmm. I promised Charlie I would call her before bedtime. I’ll do it right now. Gimme kisses, Gregory.”
Greg smiled, leaning to kiss her mouth.
“I love you, cookiepuss.”
“I love you too.” CJ laughed.
He called for the dog and Jack happily followed. CJ picked up the phone to call her daughter.
“Mom, are you alright?”
“I'm OK. A bit lethargic but it’s really to be expected. Greg has me on mostly bed rest until the weekend. I was miffed but it is probably the best idea.”
“It is. Do not push yourself. You had major surgery…slow down for a while.”
“How are my granddaughters?” CJ wanted to change the subject.
“I think Leah has an imaginary friend. I find her having conversations with someone all the time. Did I do that?”
“No, you just made Tim play with you. Does her friend have a name?”
CJ remembered her conversation with Leo; he said he watched over them. Could she be talking to her grandfather?
“I haven’t asked yet but I will. Brendan and I thought we would bring Leah and Georgie Jean to see you next weekend.”
“Good, I miss my girls. Brendan is well?”
“Yeah, we’re all fine. I promise.”
“Alright. Well sweetie, I'm going to bed. I love you, and give my love to everyone.”
“I love you too mom. Goodnight.”
CJ hung up just as she heard Greg coming back in. Jack did his happy bark and she thought about Winston. Closing her eyes, she thought about Winston, Leo, and another time in her life. Sometimes it was difficult to understand how she loved Greg so much and yet still loved Leo.
“I'm not asleep.” She said, opening her eyes. Greg was tiptoeing around.
“Come to bed, Mr. Brock.”
Greg smiled, sliding between the blankets with his wife. CJ threw her arms around him and kissed his mouth. She ran her fingers through his hair.
“I am so glad to be back home.” She whispered.
“I'm glad too. I'm glad you're better and I don’t have to be scared to death anymore.”
“You weren’t the only one.”
“CJ, do you remember what you said to me when you woke up? Do you remember seeing Leo?”
“Yes.” She nodded. “I'm not sure if it was a dream or real, but I remember it. Why?”
“I'm just asking.” Greg kissed her again.
“I've decided too that you're right. I need a little more rest.”
“You are taking me to brunch on Saturday though.” CJ said.
“Absolutely. I can't wait.”
Greg turned out the lamp and held his wife as she fell asleep. She smelled so good, so comforting; he inhaled the scent of her body wash. Stroking her hair, Greg relaxed until sleep claimed him for another night.
I'm In....: the lair
I Feel....: pleasedfeeling love
I Hear....: "Bleeding Love" Leona Lewis
keep_warm: gowaykeep_warm on June 29th, 2008 11:35 pm (UTC)
I haven't had time to read this properly yet, and I'll get back to you when I do, but I'm very much looking forward to doing so...the idea is most intriguing. I read a CJ HAS BREAST CANCER fic once and it was so overblown and awful I'm pleased to see something similar by a competent writer :)
SSA McGeek: CJ McGarry....one of my favesmcgarrygirl78 on June 29th, 2008 11:40 pm (UTC)
Well this is the last one, the other three can be found in my memories. They are called Fallible, Together at the Edge of the Cliff, and Only One Lifetime. Yeah, I'm pimping : )

Hope you read them all and enjoy. Oh, and thank you for the compliment, it means a lot.

Edited at 2008-06-29 11:41 pm (UTC)