DISCLAIMER: The West Wing and its characters are the property of NBC, Aaron Sorkin and John Wells.
CHALLENGE: Written as part of the 1001 Nights Challenge - curiosity.
ARCHIVING: Only with the permission of the author.

Can We Talk?
By Celievamp

All the time she was teasing Josh about Joey Lucas there was this little voice somewhere deep inside berating her. Why was she so chickenshit, why didn't she just put her own suit forward? There was something about the smarts that Joey Lucas exuded that was the hugest turn on. Donna knew she was no slouch in the brains department but Joey Lucas rang rings around her – around most people. The whole deafness thing as well, the battling against adversity pressed all her buttons.

She watched Joey's hands move deftly through the signs as she expressed her thoughts, her interpreter only a beat behind her. Beside her, Josh listened intently, focusing on Joey rather than the interpreter. He was interested, that was for certain. The flash of jealousy she felt was familiar but something was different this time. Instead of the other woman being the object of her jealousy as was normal given her long-term infatuation with her boss, this time she was jealous of Josh. Donna realized that she wanted Joey for herself.

She didn't feel horror… she didn't feel shocked. She should, surely. She wasn't that way… okay, if she was honest with herself she had always been curious. She had had… crushes on other girls, on older women when she was in her teens. She hadn't done the experimenting thing in college because she had met her future husband the second week of the first semester and that was that as far as dating went. But she had thought… she had looked… and in the dark when he was slumbering deeply beside her, she had fantasized.

So she was curious. She wanted to feel those hands that sculpted words and meaning and emotion out of the air to touch her body, to write words of love on her skin. She wanted Joey's silence because in the constant prattle and chatter of the West Wing the bright brittle intelligence that surrounded her day in day out she had come to realize that sometimes in silence more was said, there could be more meaning, more emotional resonance in a look or a touch than in a thousand words.

Josh was talking now, the interpreter's fingers moving swiftly trying to keep up with Josh's fluency as he warmed to his theme. But Joey, Joey wasn't looking at Josh, she wasn't looking at her interpreter. Joey was looking at her, and as Donna felt the blush rise in her cheeks, Joey Lucas smiled.

A few minutes later the meeting was over – Josh was going to be on the Hill for the rest of the day in a series of meetings. Joey and her interpreter left and Donna went back to her desk. She almost jumped out of her skin when a small hand touched her shoulder.

"Can we talk?" Joey asked.

The End

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