It was the usual. Sam couldn't help but be amused as he stood outside Josh's office, just around the edge of the door jamb where he couldn't be seen. Donna had nodded at him, and looked confused as Sam put his fingers to his lips and pointed to his friend's office. Her puzzled look hadn't cleared when Josh called for her in his subtle fashion.
She cut Sam one more glance before entering. "Yes, Josh?"
Josh was frantically shifting papers and books around on his desk. "I can't find it!"
"Josh, as much as I wish it were mind-reading isn't listed on my resume, though it should be. . .what are you looking for?" She tilted her head to the side, leaning over as Josh ducked under his desk.
"The thing. . . you know."
"And which thing would this be?"
"The thing for. . ." he looked over his shoulder, his hand waving aimlessly in the air, "for the thing. . ."
"Uh-huh." Donna raised her chin and glanced behind her, suddenly wondering if she were the butt of a cruel joke that Sam was in on. "I need a little more information than that."
"I have this thing, you know what it is, and the thing I need for it is missing. You seen it?"
By this time Donna was backing away, warily. "I'll ask Sam."
She nodded and walked to the door, then turned. "Is this Tuesday's thing or Friday's thing?"
"Oh, come on, Donna. Thursday's thing. Friday's thing isn't until next Wednesday."
"Rescheduled then." She nodded in understanding.
Josh appeared over the rim of his desk. "No. . .it's been scheduled that way. Mr. Friday has an engagement on Tuesday, so we rescheduled it for Wednesday. Remember? You're the one who told me." Josh's voice was bemused.
Donna now felt like she'd just walked into a freak show. Sam wasn't helping; whatever writer's block he was fighting by walking the hall had been replaced by a fit of barely suppressed giggles. The fact that she'd never actually heard a man giggle before didn't help.
Books were now crashing to the floor. "Dammit, I know it's here."
"Josh? Um. . .do-do you want to be left alone?" Donna was hopeful.
""Yeah. No. Wait, wait, wait, get Sam in here."
Donna smiled and grabbed Sam's arm. He'd been gesturing frantically, not wanting to step foot in the doorway, but she snatched him around anyway.
Josh looked startled. "Wow. That was fast."
"Wasn't it though?" She smiled and walked out, and after a moment's thought, took Sam's position by the door.
"Sam, you see that thing?"
"The Thursday thing?"
"It's there already."
"So the thing is there. Well. Wait, what about the thing here?"
"Thank god." Josh sank into his seat.
"But," Sam glanced behind him and leaned in. "There's the thing about the other matter."
"That matter is redundant."
So's this conversation, Donna thought, and continued to listen.
"No, really," Sam insisted, "the thing is. . ."
"The thing is that this thing doesn't have anything to do with the other thing, so why bring it up?"
"Because it's gonna be a thing."
"Oh god." Josh put his head in his hands.
"'Fraid so, buddy." Sam looked sympathetic for a moment.
Donna cautiously leaned around the door. "Yes, Josh?" She sounded scared.
"Listen closely. That thing I lost, it's okay. Don't think it was much of a thing anyway, but still, there's this other thing that looks like it's going to turn into a thing, so if you can call Leo and explain it to him while I make a few phone calls. . ."
"Josh. . ."
"Now, Donna. Chop chop."
"Chop chop?" Donna frowned and walked to her desk, trying to sort out Josh's precise wording. She called Leo. Three minutes later she was back.
"Leo says the thing won't be a thing, unless we make it a thing. Are we making it a thing?"
"Well, things tend to turn into things all by themselves." Sam turned a questioning glance to Josh.
"But this particular thing is a thing all it's own."
"True." Sam's decisive expression chilled Donna, who feared what was coming. "Tell Leo that this thing will be a thing regardless if we make a thing out of it. Tell him we need to be prepared."
Donna was looking pale. She nodded and walked off, and returned three minutes later. "He says not to make it a thing, that the thing will take care of itself."
Josh thought about that. "I guess it wouldn't hurt to wait." Sam nodded and turned to Donna, who held up her hand.
"No. Call him yourself."
"I was just going to say thank you."
"Oh. You're welcome." She turned to Josh. "Can I take a lunch break now?"
"Thank you." And she ran from the office. And Josh and Sam watched her go, then gave Leo an evil grin as he peeked in to the office, grinned in conspiracy, and walked on.