All Too Human
Character(s): Sam, Josh
Disclaimer: Characters belong to ABS - though one of them not for much longer - and the title is shamelessly ripped off the George Stephanopoulos book of the same name... Way I figure, that's the way Sam's gonna go out, George-style, since that was his character's inspiration in the first place, so here goes.
Summary: "I'm too human for this job," he said sadly. What made Josh a little unnerved was that they were ALL too human to do the things they did with Godlike power.
"Sam...what are you doing?" Josh asked gently from the door, knowing fully well what his best friend was doing.
"Packing. Hey, can you hand me that box over there? I can't remember how I got all the law books in here, and I sure as hell don't know how I'm gonna get them out of here," he joked in response with a light shrug, hating the look he knew Josh was giving him.
Josh handed over the box. "I don't understand why you can't-"
"Because I can't, Josh, because if I have to meet with someone about aliens or pennies or some other worthless organization, I may very well lose my sanity. Because I can't take being left out of the loop anymore." Sam paused and looked down at the desk that would soon belong to some other eager writer. "Because you guys don't need me."
"Sam, don't be ridiculous, this is YOU, you helped win the elections-"
"No." He held up his hand. "I didn't. Maybe the first one, but sure as hell not the second. That was Connie and Doug and Bruno and all you guys - I just screwed things up."
"You did not-"
"Yes, I did." The solemn dark in his best friend's voice scared Josh just a little - this was Sam, who had been the naive kid they loved so much for his outlook on the world. Even if it was misguided from time to time, he was still so idealistic, so wholly believing that the world was a good place.
Where would they be without someone who looked at things that way? The world as viewed by Toby?
"You could stay, Sam...we didn't know, really, I...I didn't realize you felt the way you did, Leo didn't either and he's with me on this - we can make it better. We can fix it. We can stop leaving you out of things - we didn't realize we were doing it most of the time that we were doing it, we didn't realize you were so unhappy. We can make it like it was."
"No, you can't, Josh, because this isn't the first campaign. We can't write
rabble-rousing speeches and expect to get by with it, we can't run that kind of White House, and with good reason. The world would fall apart. That's what I was good at - not this, not trying to write without pissing people off, not trying to smoothe things over with stupid groups. I hate doing that - I won't."
"But where are you gonna go?"
Sam laughed. "I graduated second in my class at Princeton and in the top ten at Duke Law School, you think I can't get a job?"
Josh looked at him slowly. "You've had offers already, haven't you?"
"Yeah," Sam answered quietly.
"So what're you doing?"
"Television. I can be as partisan as I want 'cause it's a debate-style show, I get to argue my case and people actually get to listen."
"Sam, we always listened-"
"No you didn't, Josh."
"No, you didn't. You listened to what Leo said, sometimes you listened to what Toby said. But not to me - hey, I was bottom rung on this. It...It wasn't your fault." Sam sighed. "Besides - it's too damn cold here, and plus Mom's not doing so well so it'll be good to be closer to her. I'm all she has now since Dad...and it's not like this isn't something I wanna do, Josh, stop looking at me like that."
"It's not something I want you to do."
"What are you, now, my babysitter?"
"Sam..." Josh's voice bordered on whining. "I just...I just don't understand why you can't let us fix it so you can stay here."
Sam stared at the flag on the wall that needed to come down in short order, then he looked back at Josh, then back at the flag again, and Josh swore he saw tears in Sam's eyes a little. "I'm too human for this job," he said quietly. "The decisions we make...I say the word and it decides how many poor people have access to health care, I add a verb here or there and it changes how the world proceeds, it makes or breaks foreign policy, it's...I'm too human for this."
Sam was right - Josh knew that. Of course Sam was right - he was always right about things like feelings and emotions and people, he had a sense that he could just...
The rest of them didn't have that.
God, where would they be without that sense? That sense of morality over politics?
They'd be lost without their moral compass.
And what unnerved Josh more was that he knew they were ALL too human for the things they did with Godlike power - they were nothing more than people who had come out of seemingly nowhere to help a man win an election. And now they were changing the course of HISTORY.
The amount of pressure on that alone - no wonder Sam didn't want to stay. To say nothing of the hours and the climate and the crap that had gone on for him over the last two years in the way of work...every day thinking that they were impacting the world? It was dizzying, mind-blowing even.
Sam sighed once more and took down the flag, folding it very neatly and placing it on top of one of the boxes of law books. Someone else would be decorating soon, he wasn't sure who it would be, but someone would - they wouldn't be able to survive without a Deputy Communications Director very long, though he doubted anyone would put up with Toby as long as he had.
But that wasn't his problem anymore.
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