Author's Note:

Requiem - Season 7, Episode 18
C.J. Cregg | Danny Concannon

"Before you start liquoring me up, I should tell you .."

"You're a virgin?"

[…]

"We've put this off for seven years. This'll keep another night."

Based on their giddiness in the office and the conversation during the reception, I am hard pressed to believe that Danny got more than just a taste that Wednesday night.


Adams Morgan

Washington, DC

Wednesday, November 8th 2006

11PM

The car slowed to a halt just outside his apartment.

"It was good to see everyone tonight," Danny said as angled the rear view mirror to determine whether he needed to get out of the car immediately.

"Nice to have the gang back together. Wish it could have been under different circumstances though."

"Yeah."

"We miss you in the press room .."

He saw no reason to point out that it had been a while since that particular feeling was mutual.

"Car's coming," he said instead.

He stepped out onto the street and bent down to say his goodbyes.

"Night, Katie. Thanks for the ride."

"Welcome. Night .."

He watched her drive away, and was just pulling the keys to his apartment from his coat when a feeling of unease blindsided him.

Something was out of place, even if he couldn't quite put a finger on it.

He chalked the hypervigilance up to the years spent on assignment in shifty places overseas, but took a look up and down the road anyway.

The steps behind him came just as he was about to turn the key into the lock of his apartment building.

"Good evening, Sir."

Danny acknowledged the man with a nod.

"Ms. Cregg would like to know if she can come by."

"Uh .. sure."

When the agent stared impassively at him for a moment longer than necessary, Danny held out his keys.

"Number 3."

"We'd prefer you to wait inside."

"Right."

He waited while the agent did a sweep of his apartment, and it wasn't lost on him that the man took up a position outside his door when he was done.

He opened his mouth to ask a question, but the agent already had the answer.

"Under five minutes."

Danny fixed himself a drink and turned the stereo on as he waited - closing his eyes against the sublime lyrical phrasing as Frank Sinatra's voice drifted out through the speakers.

There was a slight tap, and he turned to find her standing in the doorway.

"Hey .." he said, watching her closely as she pulled her coat against herself.

Trying to assess where she was in her coping mechanisms.

In his experience, grief either stripped you to the core or made you a nervous bundle of energy which sapped at your life force.

It was a no-win situation whichever way it hit you, so it came as no surprise when she took the glass from his hand and helped herself to a long draw

No doubt she needed something to make her feel warm inside.

"Keep it," he said when she tried to hand the glass back to him. "You cold?"

"A little."

"How's the President?" he asked as he adjusted the thermostat and poured another drink for himself.

"Devastated."

"Margaret?"

"Trying to hold it together."

"The others?"

"Hanging in there, I think. There hasn't been much communication."

"And you?"

"Feeling rather .. bleak right now," she said, looking into her drink.

Her eyes glimmered with tears as they flicked to his.

"Wanna start by giving me your coat?"

When he returned from hanging it up, he found she had settled on the couch.

"Hey .." he said gently as he sank into the space next to her.

There was no awkwardness or antagonism now.

Just one person holding space for another.

"Nice place."

"Thanks .."

He used the remote control on the coffee table to dim the lights.

It's quarter to three ..

"This song gets me every time .." she said, a minute or so in.

"Want me to turn it off?"

"No."

Her cheek come down against his shoulder, and he felt her slip out of her Chief of Staff persona as soon as he took her hand in his.

"I read your piece this morning .."

"Like it?"

She nodded.

"I miss him."

"I know .."

She shifted slightly, and he took that as an invitation to wrap an arm around her shoulder.

He knew it wouldn't be long until the real tears came when she draped her arm around his waist.

Danny held her as silent sobs wracked her body.

Dropped a kiss to the top of her head, and ran his fingers through her hair.

He held her long after the sobs had subsided and her breath had evened out; reflecting on the loss in his own life.

A mentor, a couple of friends, a cousin he'd been close with.

The people with shared experiences that he'd been able to draw comfort from.

All you could do was hold the fort and keep the light on.

Movement under this fingertips alerted him to the fact that she was awake.

"How long have I been asleep?"

She sounded disoriented.

"About an hour."

"I'm sorry .."

"No need to apologize. Pretty sure you've been running on fumes for a while."

"It's late. I should probably go."

"You probably should. Another long day tomorrow."

"Yes."

But her fingers curled into his sweater and his fingers found their way back into her hair.

"CJ?"

The atmosphere in the room shifted gears ever so subtly as she raised her head and looked him.

"Do you like me running my fingers through your hair?"

"I do."

The look in her eyes carved a path right through to his gut, and he could feel the air rarifying as he ran a thumb across her bottom lip.

"There's not any chance you're past it yet, is there?" he whispered as she parted her lips and placed a kiss on the tip on his thumb.

"Not really, no."

One featherlike stroke of her lips against his. And then another, and another until need trumped looking into each other's eyes and it became a wild scramble that neither one of them had the will to resist. She pressed her body against his, moaning into his mouth as his hands swept up and down her back and pulled her into him.

"Danny .."

He didn't need to ask what was going on. The way she was moving against him didn't leave much to the imagination.

He'd been here before - with a desperate need to feel connected to someone without talking - and he was more than happy to let her take whatever she needed whichever way suited her tonight.

She fell apart in a shower of unintelligible words, and when she opened her eyes he could see the combination of mortification and gratitude in them.

"Did we just make out on the couch like a couple of teenagers with all our clothes on?"

"We did. It was like grabbing me and kissing me .. on a whole new level."

He made no attempt to keep the smile out of his voice.

"Was I the only one who .."

"You were .."

"God .."

She ran a hand across her face before looking at her watch. "I hate to do this but it's almost one o'clock, and I really should .."

"I'll get your coat..

"Will you be at the funeral on Friday?" she asked as he walked her towards the apartment door a few moments later.

"Yes."

"Okay."

She leaned in to kiss him, but her face looked troubled.

"What?"

"This doesn't feel right."

"Whaddaya mean?"

"I mean leaving you like .. this .. " she gestured downwards.

"There are better times ahead."

She punched him lightly on the arm.

"I'm serious .."

"I'll take care of it."

"Are you trying to entice me to stay?"

"Nope. Just giving you something to fantasize about when you're finalizing the budget."

Her eyes flashed with with a combination of lust and amusement this time.


Author's Note:

Fun fact: the song referenced in the story - One for my baby (and one more for the road) - is featured in the 1954 movie called 'Young at Heart' which stars .. Doris Day.