A/N: It's Father's Day, and I simply couldn't resist a little post-series one-shot with the Bartlet Family. It's Jed's first Father's Day outside the White House, and all the Bartlet girls (and grandkids) play a role.
Disclaimer: I do not own the characters of the West Wing; I simply named Ellie's baby in this story.
He'd always loved Father's Day.
Ever since Elizabeth had been born, and he'd settled into the role of fatherhood, it had been one of his favorite holidays. He treasured it the way he knew Abbey treasured Mother's Day; a day to remind themselves of the family they'd created, together.
It had been eight years since he'd celebrated it at the farm; this year, he was relishing every moment with his girls and his grandkids.
The morning had started out with before-breakfast sex with Abbey, and honestly, was there any better way to spend a Sunday? After a quick shower with her they headed downstairs to start breakfast, the girls and their families arriving at ten to eat with them. He couldn't resist stealing the occasional kiss from Abbey; being home, not as surrounded by security, was one of the greatest gifts being out of office had given him.
"Jed, the girls will be here soon," Abbey said, laughing as he kissed her again, tasting the strawberry she'd been eating. She pushed against him lightly, tilting her head back and shaking it slightly, her dark curls tumbling around her shoulders. "You didn't get enough this morning?"
"Sweet knees, I'll never have enough of you," he replied saucily, watching her roll her eyes, an amused smirk on her face. "I'm complimenting you dear, I'd appreciate it if you didn't roll your eyes at me."
"You're so full of yourself," she replied, shaking her head again as she walked to the door when the doorbell went off. "Behave yourself in front of our daughters, if you could. Maybe I'll reward you later if you do."
He gave a wolf whistle as he watched her walk away, grinning at the mock-glare she shot him over her shoulder before disappearing around the corner. He turned to the pancakes he was supposed to be watching, flipping the circles of batter once enough bubbles came to the surface.
He turned when he heard Zoey's bright, happy voice, wrapping his arms around her when she threw her small frame at him. Her face buried itself into his neck as her arms grasped his shoulders, her feet standing on tip-toe so she was level with him.
"Happy Father's Day, Dad," she said, pulling back and grinning, her eyes shining happily. She was so grown-up, so different from the girl who'd come back from her kidnapping- he thanked God every day for the positive route her recovery had taken.
"Thanks kid," he said, ruffling her thick, dark hair, tucking it behind her ear afterward. She produced a card and wrapped package from her bag, placing it on the counter. "You bein' here is enough, Zo- you didn't have to get me anything."
"Well, I guess I could go return it at the store…" Zoey said, tapping her chin with her forefinger for a minute before shaking her head, laughing. "Of course I had to get you something Dad, it's Father's Day!"
She rolled her eyes as she poured herself a cup of coffee, shaking some sugar into it.
"I brought Charlie- I hope that's okay," she said casually, and Jed fought to keep the smile off his face. Maybe he'd finally get a son-in-law he actually liked.
"You know he's always welcome in this house, Zoey," he replied, and she grinned, her whole face lighting up. "He with your mom?"
"Yeah, and Ellie just drove up," she replied, and Jed brightened a little more, taking the pancakes off the griddle and wrapping an arm around his youngest.
"C'mon, I wanna see that little granddaughter of mine," he said, taking her with him and walking to the front door.
Ellie, Vic, and the baby carrier were just coming into the house when Jed and Zoey reached the entryway, and Zoey zipped forward and hug her sister while Vic hung their coats up and Abbey knelt to release the baby from the carrier straps.
"Well aren't you getting big, Bonnie, you sweet girl," Abbey said, cooing to the infant as she straightened, bouncing the baby. "Ellie, she has so much hair now!"
"It sprouted overnight," their middle child said, her eyes betraying her pride. "She's starting to grab her feet too."
"She gets more beautiful every time I see her," Jed proclaimed, and Ellie smiled, her cheeks flushing.
"Happy Father's Day Dad," she said, coming forward to hug him, placing a kiss on his cheek. He held her tightly, placing his own kiss to her temple.
"Thanks sweetheart," he said, releasing her. He shook Vic's hand, sharing a nod with the man- he had to admit, he'd grown on him, since Bonnie's birth. Charlie came around a corner and Jed's lips curled up into a smile. "Charlie, it's nice to see you around again."
"Thank you sir- it's nice to be around again," the younger man said, his face creasing into a smile as he accepted Jed's handshake. "How's retirement?"
"I see the sun more than I'm used to," Jed replied, and Abbey smirked behind him. He turned, narrowing his eyes at her. "And what, might I ask, was that sound for?"
"Nothing, Jed," she said, eyes still on the baby in her arms. He frowned, trying to read her, but eventually giving up.
"You are hogging the grandchild, hand her over," he said, taking Bonnie carefully into his arms and stroking his fingers down her stomach, kissing the top of her head lightly. "You got heavier kid, whatcha been eating?"
While everyone rolled their eyes at him Liz pulled up in the minivan, Annie and Gus streaming out the back once she'd parked. His eldest daughter followed a few feet behind her kids, Abbey hugging both of them tightly before reaching her daughter, kissing her cheek.
"Grandpa!" Gus cried, blue eyes ablaze with excitement as he hugged Jed's leg. "Mommy said to say Happy Father's Day to you too because you're Mommy's daddy, like Daddy is my daddy!"
"That's right kiddo," Jed said, ruffling Gus's blond hair with his hand, smiling down at his grandson. "I like that shirt!"
Carefully, Jed handed Bonnie off to Zoey, who eagerly took her niece into her arms, and once Gus was regaling Abbey with a tale about what had happened on the playground on Friday, went over to Annie and Liz.
"Hey Grandpa," Annie said, hugging him eagerly, her smaller frame fitting easily into his arms. She's lost the eyebrow piercing and lightened her make-up, and was looking very beautiful for a girl of seventeen; she looked so much like Liz. "Happy Father's Day."
"Thanks Annie- how's school?" Jed asked, watching her eyes light up as she began to talk about the play she was in. Once she'd scampered off to talk to Ellie, Jed turned to Liz, smiling at his oldest daughter. "You look good, Liz."
"I look divorced," she replied, though she moved forward to hug her father tightly, burying her face in his shoulder momentarily. Doug had been cheating on her for years, it had been discovered- multiple women before the nanny, and when Liz learned he'd gotten another woman pregnant, it had been the end for her. She'd filed for divorce in April, and it had been finalized only a week ago. She looked good, though; no longer was there the stress of keeping it from the kids. "Happy Father's Day, Dad."
"Thanks, Liz," he said, kissing her on the forehead. "It'll get easier. And you know you've always got your mom and I here if you need a babysitter."
"Yeah, I know," she said, smiling at him, eyes showing him her gratitude. "I hope you've got food; I'm starving."
"Food's in the kitchen!" Jed called, moving everyone down the hall, to the destination of food. He manned the griddle again while Abbey started cooking the eggs, beginning to reheat the bacon. Ellie was in charge of pouring the coffee, and Zoey and Charlie were in the corner, entertaining the grandkids.
Jed couldn't help but notice the way Charlie watched Zoey with Bonnie; maybe they'd have another wedding and grandkid before next year's Father's Day. He smirked, flipping the pancakes and letting his eyes linger over his family.
"You're doing that thing again where you look at your family and grin like you don't realize anyone can see you," Abbey said in his ear, though her tone said she loved that that was the way he looked at the people assembled in their kitchen. He turned to look at her, meeting her green eyes, his blue eyes shining with happiness. "You look sexy when you look this happy, in case you didn't know."
He merely leaned over, covering her mouth with his in a quick kiss that said more than he ever could. When he pulled back her eyes were still closed, lips curved upwards in an appreciative smile. When she opened her eyes she grinned fully, shaking her head playfully at him.
"Would you two stop making out by the stove and just cook breakfast, please?" Zoey asked, rolling her eyes at them. "You're scarring the children."
"Hey, they're happy- leave 'em be, Zo," Liz said, shaking her head at her sister good-naturedly, her lips curving upwards in a small smile. "Though I would appreciate some food before the end of the next century, please."
Abbey and Jed exchanged a look, eyebrows quirked upwards in amusement.
"And here I thought it was Father's Day…"