Author's Notes: This is, by far, my favorite West Wing ficlet. It was beta'd by my aunt Deb, because she's amazing and I love her 'cause she's my favorite aunt. Period.

And now, read on. And then review, because I'm so terribly proud of this.


When she was little, Donna always pictured herself with a soft-spoken, handsome man who ended every sentence with, "and I love you," just like Wesley did with Buttercup in The Princess Bride; someone who would agree with all of her opinions and kiss her in the rain. She imagined love at first sight and marriage within the year.

Well, she doesn't have a ring on her finger and it was more like love after seven and a half years and while Josh is certainly handsome, he's one of the loudest people she knows.

But his echoing voice is comforting, as though he's actually present, and she doesn't need to hear him say "I love you" to know that he does. It's written clearly on his smile, in his eyes, and in the memos he sends her when he's bored and has nothing to occupy his time with. She's grown to love his imperfections, because it keeps life interesting and is what makes him him.

They don't agree on everything – far from it – and sometimes she hates his breathing guts, but they don't fight often and most of the time she manages to keep from threatening to murder him in his sleep.

The easy banter that they fall into during conversations is far from romantic, but it's comfortable and friendly and she can't imagine him being anything other than a smart-ass bastard. It's an inextricable part of him and she's grown to love it just as much as the side that buys her flowers and candy when they've just finished fighting.

He isn't one for kissing in the rain, or watching the sunset, or anything to that effect, but then she's always found that once you've seen one sunset you've seen them all, and the only difference between kissing in the sunshine and kissing in the rain is that in one you're soaking wet and liable to get hit by lightening.

She finds, after a while, that romance isn't the thing she sees in movies. Real, true romance is the special smile he reserves specially for her, the way his eyes automatically find hers when she enters a room, and the feel of his arms encircling her waist as she drifts off to sleep at night.

Josh Lyman isn't perfect by any means, and Donna wouldn't change that for the world.