|Reviews for Nadir|
| greatestheights chapter 8 . 2/27
So...I had to come back to "Nadir," too. You probably knew this was coming. This time, the summary didn't trick me. (But it's perfect: "Josh gets a piano—and a hard time." Somehow, this sums up the story better than anything else would have.) I came into this prepared to be sad.
But then, as usual, you surprised me. This is obviously not a happy tale...well, at least not the bulk of it...but it is filled with joy and love and hope and catharsis and resilience. So, basically, everything I could ever want in a story.
All the detail you bring to each character's observations of Josh, and then to Josh's descent into blindness and depression, and then how he fights his way out of it (with plenty of help), is staggering. Again, I felt tempted to go through and quote back large sections of each chapter, but I've restrained myself. Donna is especially lovely in this. Josh helping her get her degree was perfect. And don't even get me started on the damn piano. I kept wondering what the deal was when I first read it—wondering if Josh would just need it to remind him of Joanie, if there was some backstory with the piano itself, vaguely wondering if he had known how to play at some point—but I didn't see the reveal coming in quite the way it did. This last part from Chapter 7 in particular was moving to me: "He shuddered. His shoulders heaved. 'God, I love you,' he groaned. And Donna wondered why the whole winter night outside didn't light up, and the piano start to play by itself."
Well, now that I've gushed at length, I'll finish this up by saying that "Nadir" (and "Buying Time") will stick with me for a long time. Fantastic, fantastic work.
| fluteskickbrass chapter 8 . 3/31/2013
OK I FEEL MUCH BETTER ABOUT MY LIFE CHOICES NOW.
This was beautiful. I'm glad it was a happy ending. I'm all for the angst, but awwwwwwwww.
| Arpad Hrunta chapter 8 . 1/7/2013
Very sweet ending to the story! I liked the Eagleton reference as well - that would have been very timely and something Josh would certainly remember.
| Gillian Deverone chapter 8 . 10/25/2012
| Gillian Deverone chapter 7 . 10/25/2012
He shuddered. His shoulders heaved. "God, I love you," he groaned. And Donna wondered why the whole winter night outside didn't light up, and the piano start to play by itself. GREAT LINES!
| Gillian Deverone chapter 6 . 10/25/2012
I'm so glad they talked.
| Gillian Deverone chapter 5 . 10/25/2012
I appreciate the faith that Jed and Leo have, but I want Donna to be his savior. She has to be.
| Gillian Deverone chapter 4 . 10/25/2012
I don't like self-pitying Josh.
| Gillian Deverone chapter 3 . 10/25/2012
Saw it coming and it was still sad.
| Gillian Deverone chapter 2 . 10/24/2012
The love story that you've created for Josh and Donna (too bad they were before the whole name scrunch thing, like Brangelina-they could be Jodda or Dosh) is gorgeous-it's almost suffocating in its beauty.
As for the other characters, I like that they are mad at themselves, but also remembering what it was like and showing they are only human.
I never got a CJ/Josh vibe at all in the show-maybe because I only saw him with Donna, maybe not? Did you see one or is it only part of the fiction?
| sassie69 chapter 8 . 10/20/2012
What I have always loved about this story is actually Josh's relationship with Georgie. It is a nice touch. I am so looking forward to you posting more of your stories here.
| Veridissima chapter 8 . 10/19/2012
Love it perfect finale
The scene with Donna telling him about the rape, it hurt so much, so beautifully written, so sad, poor Donna
The part where he starts playing sad and sweet at the same time
Love this story
I hope you have more
| alix33 chapter 8 . 10/19/2012
"Josh, what made you decide to stop? I mean, if you kept playing after she died . . ." He swallowed, hard. It took him a while to answer. "It was something someone said. A teacher, not ours; a judge at a competition I played in." "What did he say?" "She. She said—she'd known Joanie, had heard her play not long before— but she didn't know what had happened." "What did she say, Josh?" There was a very long pause. Donna waited. When he finally answered, his voice was almost inaudible. "She said I was going to be better. Than Joanie. That I already was. She said, 'You can beat your sister into the ground, dear.'" "Oh, Josh. I'm sure she didn't mean—" "No, of course she didn't mean anything; she didn't know. But I went into the bathroom and threw up. And then I went home and shut the piano and told my parents I wasn't going to play again, and I didn't. I couldn't. I just couldn't." - I would not have blamed Josh for stopping. Who would have? What that woman said was immeasurably cruel, considering that Josh was already carrying around so much guilt because of how Joanie died.
"she thought she understood a little better the hardness he sometimes showed people, the sarcasm and the mockery that could be almost cruel at times, the pitilessness with which he could go after someone who was getting in his, or the administration's, way. He had had to learn to be hard to do what he'd done," -True.
"So I got my degree under false pretenses?" "Only if you refuse to acknowledge the signatures, which might be a little unkind to Margaret. Not to mention the President, who was inordinately pleased to get to award a degree. It seems he's always wanted to." "He did Zoe's." "That wasn't enough. It gave him a taste for more." - That bit about the president made me go AW! and laugh simultaneously.
"Come on, C.J.," the President was saying. "Sing something. Leo's told me you do something called 'The Jackass.'" His eyes were twinkling. "'The Jackal,' Mr. President?" C.J. answered the twinkle, laughing. "I only lip-sync to that, sir. I don't think you have it in your CD collection." "Well, sing something else. You sing—I've heard you. Come on, we need some music here. We're celebrating." "I only sing when I'm drunk, Mr. President." "You're drunk now, Claudia Jean." "When I'm drunk and when I have accompaniment, sir. I don't do a cappella, no matter how drunk I am." "Well, let's get you some accompaniment, then. I have a piano here, a very good piano. The best of pianos. Arthur Rubenstein played on this piano; Vladimir Horowitz played this piano. Don't let that intimidate anyone, though. Come on, who'll do it? We need someone to play the piano so C.J. can sing." "Not me, sir." "Don't look at me, sir." "I don't play. Not a chance." "I took lessons for a year or two, but—" "You'll have to look somewhere else, Mr. President. Maybe call the KennedyCenter, ask them to send someone over. I'm sure they'd interrupt a concert if you asked them to." "Come on, one of you must play. I want to hear C.J. sing." "Josh plays," Donna said, suddenly. Everyone turned and looked at her, then at Josh, who blushed. He'd managed to keep his extra-curricular skills quiet so far, and he'd been planning to go on keeping them that way. He still felt a little odd about the whole thing. "Josh? Have you been fooling around on that big Steinway your mother sent you?" "What have you picked up? 'Chopsticks'? 'Heart and Soul'?" "Doobie Brothers hits. I'll bet he plays Doobie Brothers." "Well, if the President can stand it, I can sing to that. Come on, Josh, mi amor, show us what you can do. You can't be much worse than Sam." Donna pushed him towards the Presidential piano. "What do you want, Mr. President?" he asked, as he pulled out the bench and sat down. C.J. came over and leaned on the piano beside him. "What can you do, Josh?" the President asked. Josh pushed his sleeves up, flexed his fingers, and sat for a minute, thinking. Then he grinned. If he was going to out himself, he might as well have fun doing it. Slowly, with one finger, and as if he was having trouble finding the notes, he started to pick out a familiar tune. Everyone laughed. C.J. stood up straight, and began to sing. The others joined in. "Hail to the Chief, we have chosen for the nation." - As did those paragraphs.
"I was ready to kill you when you said I played." "The President wanted someone to play. You can't just ignore the President." "I serve at the pleasure of the President. And at the pleasure of Donnatella Moss." - AW!
Yay! for Ron and his men and women, for allowing Josh and Donna to wander through the White House gardens with intent to propose and accept.
| alix33 chapter 6 . 10/18/2012
"Josh woke up, shaking and sweating. In his dreams he could see: light, too much light: flames leaping up, reflected everywhere, and the red and blue lights flashing and spinning, round and round. He could hear, too: screams, high-pitched, shrill, like a girl's voice screaming, or a young boy's. Or both. Sirens. Music: beautiful, incessant music; shouldn't someone have turned the music off? It was incongruous, playing away through the sirens and the sound of the flames. Sirens. Lights. Flames. Music. And the screaming. And the pain: someone was hurting, someone was dying." - Oh, good grief! The sound and Technicolor version of PTSD, to taunt Josh even further with the fact that he cannot see, it seems.
Anybody that did not laugh hysterically, in part out of utter shock and sadness and anger and frustration because of what happened to Donna, but probably a whole lot of other emotions too, IMO does not have a heart, or not much of one.
| alix33 chapter 5 . 10/18/2012
"Your first-grade teacher was Mrs. Pogue; she slapped Johnny Howard for getting homesick and crying in class, and told Marcia Petersen she'd break all her crayons if she didn't stop drawing with just the black one." - Mrs. Pogue sounds like a nightmare! How DID Donna not skive off school, and frequently too?
"I expect he's still pining for you." "Poor boy." "Poor man, you mean. I feel for him. He shall go unmocked." - Hehehe.
"And maybe for wearing her skirts too short and having really great legs." "Josh!" "She did, I tell you." "You were six!" "Five, actually, but I still knew a great leg when I saw one." - Hehehe.
"Well, that had gone well, Donna thought, as she drifted off to sleep that night, Josh's arms wrapped around her and her head tucked under his chin. Surprisingly well. She'd even seen a flash of his dimples for the first time since his world had gone black. Now, if she could only think up enough questions whose answers might include hot women with great legs, maybe it could go that well every night." - AW!
"I'll tell the President what you've told me, and he'll tell you to shove it, and C.J. will tell the press that you've offered your resignation and it's been refused." - It's funny and sweet how well Leo knows Jed Bartlet, because the president will in all probability use those exact words to turn down Josh's resignation.
"I won't accept your resignation, Josh. I wanted you to hear that from the horse's mouth. And I'm quite a horse—a two-time triple-crown winner. Best in Show." - Or those...
"In the meantime, I'm announcing that you've offered your resignation, and I have refused it. That should get the press off you for a bit. I take it you heard 'Capitol Beat' yesterday. C.J.'s already been on the phone to their producers, taking a piece off their backs." - AW!