DISCLAIMER: Not mine. I promise I'm only borrowing them and will return them to their rightful owners whenever they ask for them back. My imagination took a flight of fancy.....my bank account stayed empty. (Seriously, the cast of The West Wing belong to Warner Bros. and I'm only borrowing them for some free daydreaming that I wrote down).
AUTHOR'S NOTE: The second in a series of stories introducing Kate Harper and establishing her as 'one of the gang'.
ARCHIVING: Only with the permission of the author.
FEEDBACK: To ncruuk[at]gmail.com
Introducing Kate Harper Dr Nancy McNally
"You told her before me, didn't you?" was the first thing Nancy McNally said the moment Admiral Percy Fitzwallace answered his phone.
"Told who what?"
"Don't play innocent Admiral, you know exactly what I'm talking about "
"I told her to act surprised!" protested Fitz, leaning back in his chair, knowing that for all apparent her fury, Nancy was actually in a good mood.
"I knew you'd told her!" declared Nancy triumphantly, pleased to have caught her old friend out with the bluffed hunch.
"She was that good?"
"I'd expect nothing less if what you'd told me about her CIA missions was true."
"You asked me for my best recommendation Nancy " reminded Fitz, glad that the National Security Advisor seemed, thus far at least, satisfied with her new deputy.
"And I'm impressed you actually gave me her why aren't you keeping her in uniform Percy, what's wrong with her?"
"Why does there have to be something wrong with her?" asked Fitz, slightly indignant that Nancy would infer such a thing from his generosity.
"Because the Navy is a notoriously bad sharer of its prized possessions?" suggested Nancy sarcastically, thinking of some of their arguments in the past where he had been reluctant to commit resources. In fairness to Fitz though, she'd had far more arguments about the same issues with the Army and Air Force Joint Chiefs than she had with him, and she didn't even want to think about the lack of co-operation the CIA extended to her.
"You'll get her name and picture in the press "
"Excuse me?" Nancy was confused why did Fitz suddenly want one of his people being in the papers, and why did he need her help to achieve it?
"You've read her file " began Fitz, only to be interrupted by Nancy,
"Cuba?" she asked, remembering one of the more 'political' missions she'd read about.
"And Africa, Kosovo "
"So she's been around a bit so have you Admiral "
"I wasn't wearing contact lenses and a wig " remarked Fitz casually, too casually for Nancy to take his statement at face value, prompting her to pause as she re-evaluated what she'd noticed when she'd read Kate's service record.
"You're giving her to me so the CIA will never want her again "
"Can you make sure she's in the papers?" asked Fitz, sitting up straighter in his chair.
"Why is it so important to you that she never goes back to the CIA?" pressed Nancy, intrigued.
"She deserves the right to retire "
" rather than be retired," finished Nancy, understanding the oblique reference to a CIA agent failing to return from that final mission too many.
"She'll do a good job for you Nancy," said Fitz warmly, too warmly for just an Admiral concerned about yet another officer, triggering Nancy's suspicions again.
"What's she really mean to you Percy?" asked Nancy, intrigued.
"It's classified "
"People don't say that to me anymore Percy " she warned.
"This old Admiral does will you take her?"
"She's already chewed out two of my staffers " announced Nancy proudly.
"Told you she'd work for you " retorted Fitz proudly.
"She'll be in the Post within the month "
"I owe you Nancy "
"If she survives Jed Bartlet we'll call it quits " and, as suddenly as she'd started her phone call with the Head of the Joint Chiefs, the National Security Advisor, probably only one of two women on the planet who could do this to him, hung up, before turning to look out of her office into the bullpen where her newest Deputy was settling in.
"We're quits already Fitz " she muttered, satisfied with what she was seeing before reaching once more for her phone she had an appointment to leak .
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