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Disclaimer: All copyrighted materials referred to in this work are the property of their respective owners. References to real persons, places, or events are made in a fictional context, and are not intended to be libelous, defamatory, or in any way factual.
Genre: Gen/ Friendship
Characters: Rachel, Keith
Rating: G
Warnings: None, except maybe for champagne drinking?
Note: For the prompt "beginnings".

Summary: During a late night in the first weeks of the show, Rachel and her office are being eated by all the unpacking. Keith comes to commiserate, and perform some important rites.


September 2008

There were boxes. There were many many...many, boxes. And at this point in the night, Rachel was not quite sure they weren't multiplying and constructing elaborate plots against her.

She had been doing the show for several weeks at this point, but somehow it hadn't seemed real until right now. She had been able to bury herself in the work and the adrenaline, able to avoid confronting some very real facts.

She had an office. There was an office, with her name on it, engraved on the doorplate, even. She was going to be here for a while, and it thrilled her at the same time that it scared the crap out of her. And while the boxes had simply been arriving, accumulating, Rachel had been able to push that off into another bit of her brain.

But for some reason, she had decided, tonight. Tonight, I deal with the boxes, and then they will be done.

"Well, that was a bad idea, obviously." She said this to the corkscrew that lay on the ground in front of her. It insouciantly denied her any response.

She looked around at the boxes, and it was obviously too late to retreat. So she'd just have to push through it. Except...

Except . That phrase kind of knocked her for a loop. Except that that would mean this all was real, and she maybe wasn't quite ready to deal with that yet.

There was a a bare spot in the middle of the floor which looked very inviting. And so she sat in it, in what her elementary school called the non-PC term "Indian-style". But she had forgotten any other word for it. Maybe she had used up all the words, tonight during the show.

Rachel put her face in her hands, and rubbed the heel of her palm against her very tired eyes.

However, just then the light from the hall dimmed. Something was blocking it, and Rachel was about to snark at whoever it was, when she realized who it was.

"What, did a grenade go off in here?"

"Oh, Keith, Keith, I've seen your office. You have no space to judge, my friend."

The friend in question grinned, broadly. He possibly would have made a rude gesture, but his arms were full. Rachel briefly panicked.

"Oh, no, not another box. I can't take another box right now. "

The smile dimmed a little, replaced by a bit of concern.

"Don't worry, all good things. No Pandora's box here."


As it was apparently clear Rachel was in no mood to get up, Keith sat down in front of her. She would have mocked the "oofs" and old-man-noises he made, but she kept her mouth shut. He went to speak.

"First off , in the bottom of the box, is all the stuff from your drawer in my office, since now you deservedly have one of your own. And also some stuff that may not actually be yours, but it was in the drawer, so I'm moving it in here anyway."

"Such as?"

"For some reason, a motorized Thomas The Tank Engine. Though I may need that back when Evie comes to visit."


"Second..." At this, Keith reached into the box, and pulled out what appeared to be a pot of dirt.

"You got me a pot of dirt? Keith, you shouldn't have."

"Bite your tongue, madam. This is an amaryllis. Or at least that's what the woman at the plant store told me. It takes a long time to grow, but it will be beautiful when it blooms."

Keith glanced from the plant to Rachel, and back again; the edges of his eyes crinkled slightly. Nothing needed to be spoken, but the affection was understood.

"And finally, I realized tonight that we never really christened your office properly." At this, he reached into the box and pulled out a bottle of champagne.

"Er, Keith...I don't think Maintenance would approve of your cracking a bottle of wine over my desk."

He rolled his eyes again.

"That's why I brought the glasses."


It took him a while to get the bottle open, and a lot of restraint from Rachel to not grab it from him and do it herself. Finally, both glasses were poured, and Keith raised his in a toast.

"To the USS Rachel Maddow, long may she sail...."

At this, Rachel had to crack up laughing. Keith primly waited until she had finished.

"She's yar, and she's bright, and may she have fair seas and helping winds in all the years ahead of her."

Rachel was overcome a bit, at this, and looked down to compose herself. Then they clinked the glasses. She looked at Keith, and the words came back again.

"And to my good friend, who has provided me such a helpful star to sail by."

Looking out to the bright lights of the city from the hopeful wreckage of Rachel's new office, they were both quiet. But Rachel would later swear she heard Keith murmur under his breath,

"Second star to the right, straight on 'till morning."



( 1 comment — Leave a comment )
Dec. 30th, 2010 09:41 pm (UTC)
Awww. :)
( 1 comment — Leave a comment )


emma hamilton
i make up for it with cunning and guile

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