Someplace That You Like

"Surprise her, but make her feel comfortable."

It was perfect. Simple yet elegant. Quirky yet refined. Just like Natalie herself.

As jealous as Dan was that Jeremy had done the impossible; he couldn't help but feel proud of the man lying asleep on the floor before him.

When telling Jeremy what to look for in a restaurant, Dan never thought this would happen. He never thought that Jeremy Goodwin, the geeky new Associate Producer could find the perfect dining experience. Especially since he had failed so many times before. And perfect wasn't an exaggeration either. It truly was perfect.

It was totally and completely Natalie.

Anyone that knew Natalie Hurley knew that she was the most comfortable in the sports Night office. Dan had seen the woman outside of work and she was a totally different person. It was as if she came alive the moment she stepped off of the elevator and onto the floor that their show called home. It was like night and day. She had a sparkle to her in the Sports Night studio that Danny hadn't seen anywhere else.

And it seemed like Jeremy knew that as well.

"Make it different but make her feel at home."

Over the years, the offices of Sports Night had been used as many things other than a television studio. So much so that the fact that it was a television studio seemed secondary to everything else that went on there. It had been, among other things, a basketball court and a late night dance club. The studio had even hosted countless cheering crowds for some of the most important events in recent sports history. And while people ate there all the time, this was the first time it had ever been a restaurant. Sure, Jeremy had only managed to get Chinese takeout and paper napkins but it was four star none the less.

Jeremy had spread out a blanket on the floor and laid out plastic plates. Casting a warm glow over the scene were two little basketballs with flickering candles stuck in them. The food had been left in its white cartons with the red pagodas on the side. But the wine glasses were very real.

The whole scene was a mix of high-class romance and home-y comfort that was, without a doubt, Natalie.

"But mostly… make it someplace that you like."

From the day Jeremy had started working at Sports Night his enthusiasm had been infectious. And it was obvious that he was going to come to love the place as much as the people who'd been there since day one. Jeremy seemed to be as at home in the Sports Night office as Natalie.

While he had picked a place that the woman felt at home in, it was a place that he liked as well. It was somewhere that they both felt comfortable. And that was the most amazing part. The bridge of unfamiliarity had been burnt and they could simply enjoy one another's company.

Good food. Good atmosphere. Good company.

Jeremy's restaurant had it all and it was perfection.

Pulling his down jacket tightly around his body, Dan looked down at Jeremy, fast asleep in the middle of his restaurant. Normally, sleeping was frowned upon in dining establishments. But after a week of police, death threats, and one uncomfortably close media frenzy, Danny was sure the maitre d' wouldn't care.

It was incredible that Jeremy had managed to arrange what he did considering the amount of sleep that he was running on. And for some reason, it made sense that he'd finally managed to fall asleep here. After all, he had done the impossible.

"He found it." The comment was more to himself than anyone else and Dan's voice was filled with awed contentment.

Jeremy Goodwin really had found the perfect restaurant.

Squeeka Cuomo's Chart

- Originally written for Round 1 of Sorkin Fest on LJ (Prompt: Dan discovers the perfect restaurant.)

- All quotes are from the episode "The Head Coach, Dinner and the Morning Mail".

- Quack: Thank you so much for your support. I can't tell you how much it means to me.