[Donna stands staring into the big fountain, a single tear on her cheek, which she wipes away as she turns at the sound of Josh’s voice]
J: Donna, what’s going on? You’ve been missing for 3 months!
D: I have not been missing, missing implies tha-
J: Ok. Gone then! I’ve been worried sick about you!
D: You shouldn’t have worried
J: I know [He smiles] everybody’s been telling me that you’re a grown woman and you can take care of yourself
D: Did you listen?
J: No, not really
D: Josh, there’s something I have to tell you, Can we sit down?
J: Sure. I’m taking from the fact I have to sit down that this is serious, I mean If you think that I migh-
D: (with desperation) Josh, please!
D: 3 months ago I was diagnosed with cancer
[Josh looks completely stunned and lost]
[Cut to the west wing. CJ standing at Charlie’s desk]
C: You know I’m not gonna give that money back
CJ: I can hope
C: It’s not my fault that you all underestimated Emma
C: See you don’t even know what her name is!
CJ: I do . . . its . . . [She mumbles] . . . not Donna
C: Exactly. If you had looked at the name you might have known
[He hands her a piece of paper]
CJ: Who ever calls their child Emmeline?
C: Look at the second name
CJ: Moss? Donna’s got a sister?
C: Donna has no sister by the name of Emmeline Moss, but she does have a cousin!
CJ: A cousin?
C: You know her dad’s brother’s daughter
CJ: A cousin?
C: You want me to explain again
C: Well then
CJ: Donna never said anything about having a cousin who worked at this level
C: That’s probably because her father and Emma’s father fell out when they moved to England 12 years ago when her mother died, then 3 months ago Emma’s father also died and she moved back here. Josh asked me to look and I found her and thought she could be just the thing!
CJ: You were right!
C: Yes, I was
CJ: You still cheated us
C: You could have found out if you had wanted to
CJ: Is she nice?
CJ: Is she like Donna?
C: Sometimes scarily so, others not at all
CJ: Doesn’t look like her though
CJ: She’s very young
C: 21, I guess that’s young
CJ: Does Josh know?
C: I doubt it
CJ: What about Donna?
C: Hmmm let me think about that. I don’t know, I’ll ask her next time I see her, though that may be a while as I don’t happen to know where she is at the moment, do you?
CJ: Point taken. [Pause, throughout the next paragraph Charlie watches CJ as she talks mainly to herself, trailing off and starting again as if working something out] Have you seen Josh recently? He snuck out about 20 minutes ago and I haven’t seen him since. I . . . the woman that came to see him, that was over half an hour . . . She was wearing a big coat, you couldn’t see her face? I . . . wonder [CJ looks out towards the open door, with a puzzled look on her face]
[Cut back to fountain scene]
D: So now I’m on Chemo and it seems to be going ok. I get tired and sick sometimes really badly, but I’m coping
[She pauses thinking Josh will speak]
Josh? Josh? Are you even listening?
J: You . . . have cancer?
D: Yes Josh
J: Why didn’t you tell me before?
D: Well sometimes I wanted to, but then I didn’t want to unnecessarily worry you till I knew what was happening, till I was in control. Something like this could have affected your work when you needed to be level-headed
J: No. You can always tell be things
D: That would have been thinking about me, and not about you and the country. That’s not fair
J: Not fair? But . . . you . . . There’s nothing wrong with me Donna! You can think of yourself when something like this happens!
D: I came to see you now, didn’t I?
J: I wish you had told me before
[He smiles and takes he hand in a friendly gesture]
Then I could have been there for you instead of feeling this helpless
D: You’re here now, that’s all that matters
J: Does this mean, you’re gonna be off work for a while?
D: I don’t know, I’m thinking of coming back, not full time, not yet anyway, but at least twice a week, except when I’m on chemo
J: God, I’m so glad, even if it’s just for a day. The woman I have now. She’s . . . [He makes an exasperated gesture] . . . I mean she’s good. But she’s . . .
D: Not me? [She laughs]
J: Not you . . . I’ve missed you, ya know
D: How could you not? I’m a very missable person [She smiles]
J: No, seriously Donna
[They smile at each other]
D: I better be off. Mom worries if I don’t get home by a certain time. She’s afraid I’ll collapse somewhere and no one will ever find me!
J: Is that likely to happen?
D: Josh, I was joking?
J: I meant the collapsing
D: I have been known to feel a little faint
J: God, now I’ll be worried it happening
D: Josh [She hits him gently, smiling] [pause – they go serious again] You’ll tell everyone at work?
J: Sure, if that’s what you want
D: I do. But . . . The President knows by the way [She skims quickly over these last words]
J: What? You tell the President but not me?
D: He is the President Josh
D: I had to go to someone, to make sure they’d keep an eye on you while I was gone. And I had to get sick leave somehow and I wasn’t telling you so-
J: It all comes down to money
D: Doesn’t it always! [Pause] I’m leaving now
[She gets up and begins to walk off. It’s beginning to snow]
J: Donna, wait! There’s something you need to know
[She turns back]
I love you
D: I know you do [She smiles]
D: Merry Christmas Josh! [She turns and begins to walk off smiling hugely]
J: Donna! . . . DONNA! You can’t just leave me here like this! . . . It’s freezing! [She has disappeared out of sight] I should go. Oh God. She’s gone and I’m standing here talking to myself in the middle of a public area! I’m going to go back to the office!
[He looks both ways shiftily, puts his arms around himself for warmth and walks off]