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[personal profile] bibliothekara
Fandoms: Real News- The Rachel Maddow Show/Countdown
Rating: G/ FRC
Warnings: None.
Genres: Gen, Friednship
Characters/Pairings: Keith Olbermann, Rachel Maddow.
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.

Notes: a) Originally written for [livejournal.com profile] jender13 , for Third Monday 2011.
b) Title from one of my favorite bits in one of my favorite movies. Which movie will become clear once you read it. Very gen.
c) The time frame is probably obvious, but it’s set between November 4th and November 9th, 2010.
d) Beta'ed by the lovely and talented [personal profile] sarken .

Prompt: “What went on between Rachel & Keith during his suspension? Can be gen/friendship or "het" pairing (in that queering het sort of way.”

******
TXT MSG

TO: RMaddWoman
FROM: KO

*Batten down hatches. Put up storm windows.
*Check that all cats are in their upright and locked positions.

TO: KO
FROM: Rachel
*What on earth are you on about, you crazy crazy man?
*I’m on a c-break, you know that.
*(Also, what did I say about using that abbreviation of my name in your texts?)

TO: RMadd
FROM: KO
*That you don’t like it?

TO: KO
FROM: Rachel Maddow
*Exactly. Now what’s going on?
*We’ve got 10 minutes left; I can meet you in your office afterwards.
*Are you guys done with tomorrow’s show meeting yet?

TO: RMadd
FROM: KO
*We didn’t have a show meeting tonight.

TO: KO
FROM: Rachel Maddow
*...
* >: /
* This is about what I think it’s about?

TO: RMadd
FROM: KO
*Yeah.
*They sent me home afterwards.

TO: KO
FROM: Rachel Maddow
*Okay.
*I’m coming over.
*And I’m bringing the good stuff.

*********

There were few sights in the world that could strike terror into the heart of Keith Olbermann. Very very few.

The sight of Rachel Maddow, drawn up to her full height, arms crossed stridently across her chest? Turned out to be one of them. He reflexively took a step back. However, the look on her face was signficantly softer. Mostly frustration rather than anger, if he was any judge.

“You knew this was coming, and you didn’t think to warn me until tonight?”

“I knew in the general, not in the particular. And...”

“Keith. Look in my eyes. Do I look like I’m in any mood to play word games?”

“No ma’am.”

“You knew that they knew?”

“They called me in on Monday.”

A complex smile, full of every emotion except mirth, crossed her face.“Ah. Don’t want to risk precious Election Night ad revenues.”

“Exactly.”

“Keith...”

“Rachel, it’s a bad rule. I know it’s a bad rule, you know it’s a bad rule, and they know it too.”

Unexpectedly, Rachel laughed.

“But it’s not about the rule, not really. It’s about you and Phil, and Phil’s minions. It’s bigger, and it has been for years. And....”

She trailed off at that, finally stepping across the threshold. She retrieved the bottle of MacAllan from her messenger bag, pressing its neck into one of his hands, and her hand in to the other.

Rachel squeezed his fingers, and affection softened her eyes.

“You pain-in-the-ass. You stubborn pain-in-the-ass, you know I love you, right?”

Keith grinned. “I do know that.”

“I’ll be here. You’ll do what you have to do, and I’ll be here.”

Overcome, Keith almost had no answer for that. The only one he could come up with was nonverbal; raising the bottle of whiskey, he motioned toward the couch.

“Why Mr. Olbermann, I thought you’d never ask.”

*********

TO: KO
FROM: Rachel Maddow
*My god.
*Have you secretly been Justin Bieber all these years and not told me?

TO: RMadd
FROM: KO
*Bite your tongue, heathen.
*What are you talking about?

TO: KO
FROM: Rachel Maddow
*You’re seriously telling me you haven’t been on Twitter all day?
*Go look.
*I’ll wait.

TO: RMadd
FROM: KO
*...
*oh my.
*oh wow.

TO: KO
FROM: Rachel Maddow
*Keith Olbermann Has A Posse.

TO: RMadd
FROM: KO
*Geek.

TO: KO
FROM: Rachel Maddow
*Curmudgeon.

******

There was a very loud knock on her door.

Normally, Rachel Maddow would have terminated (with extreme prejudice) anyone who interrupted her Sunday morning tea, English muffin, and funnies routine. Especially when Susan was in Massachusetts, and the apartment felt especially unbalanced.

But then again, nothing about this weekend had been normal.

She supposed she should have expected it. Not just the weekend, but the last two years. The surreality of this path she had chosen. Chosen in large part because of Keith...even though so much of the chaos could usually be traced back to him.

Rachel shook her head. This was what it was. Being his friend wasn’t always easy, but it was worth it, for so many reasons. Not least of which? Getting to see the good man behind the bluster.

She eventually managed to get herself up and over to the door. And very nearly closed it again.

“Keith. It is 11AM. On a Sunday. What are do you doing at my door, smiling that broadly? What on earth have you done now?”

The bright smile dimmed a little, but then he resumed...well, bouncing was the only word for it.

“Marx Brothers double feature, over in the Village.”

Rachel opened her mouth to speak, and then thought better of it. She crossed her arms instead. That immediately produced the desired effect.

“Rachel, I’m sorry, I...I guess need to get out, need to not think about things for a while. Staring at the Internet is not doing me any favors, either.”

That admission knocked her for a bit of a loop.“The Internet is your revolutionary front, your gospel chorus right now. You’ve seen the petition.”

He hurriedly cut her off.

“Yeah, yeah, I know. You know half of them are my relatives, right?”

Rachel let out a incredulous giggle.“For a guy who talks to millions of people every night, you seem to have a hard time believing that there are people who like you.”

Keith looked down at his feet. “That’s television. That’s easy. But seeing it....all those names.”

Rachel leaned over to grasp the back of his neck, moving his face upwards to meet her eyes.

“My friend, you are an attractive man,” (he raised an eyebrow at this) “...empirically, I’ve been told. But they’re not just watching for the glasses and the suits. They are, in fact, watching for what you say. And how you say it.”

She leaned her forehead against his for a bit, then raised her head.

“So which Marx Brothers movies am I theoretically getting out of my sweatpants for?”

“Duck Soup and A Night At The Opera.”

“Excellent.”

******

TO: RMadd
FROM: KO
*VICTORY IS MINE!
*FETCH ME THE FINEST MUFFINS AND BAGELS IN ALL THE LAND!

TO: KO
FROM: Rachel Maddow
*No, I don’t think I will.

TO: RMadd
FROM: KO
*Spoilsport.


TO: KO
FROM: Rachel Maddow
*And I’m telling Sorkin you’re poaching his lines.

TO: RMadd
FROM: KO
*Eh, he made me into a fictional character, I think we’re even.

TO: KO
FROM: Rachel Maddow
*Thank god you’re coming back though.
*It was getting really hard to talk down Lawrence and Ed
* from their morning tiffs over the espresso machine.

**************

Rachel Maddow was obviously part cat, Keith decided. Especially the bit where she could loiter for several minutes in the door of the makeup room without him noticing.

“Almost like you never left?”

The question came out of nowhere. Rachel’s smile widened when Keith looked over, slightly startled. He tried to cover. “Not quite. I still maintain you must have gone in and rearranged my office while I wasn’t looking.”

“Oh, yes, in my copious free time?”

“You have your ways.”

“Indeed I do.”

Joanne rolled her eyes affectionately at both of them, and then motioned him out of the chair.

In a few moments, he and Rachel fell in step as they proceeded down the hall. They walked in silence for a bit. Then the pensive tinge on Rachel’s face got the better of her. She grasped him by the elbow.

“So this is it, for a while? Relative peace?”

“Relative peace. For a while.”

She seemed to take this as an answer, but a bit of melancholy remained behind her eyes.

“I’m still new at this, you know.”

Keith smiled, and placed a reciprocal hand on her shoulder. “You’re new at this, and you’re already better at so much more of it than I’ve ever been. You’re good at bits of it that I will never, ever get.”

That got a smile out of her, and he continued.

“Rachel Maddow, whatever happens to me, wherever I end up, you’re not getting rid of me that easy. You’re stuck with me for the long haul.”

“Like the crankiest Jedi Master ever?”

“Something like that.”

The PA system interrupted them, summoning first team to the studio. They began walking again.

“So you’re going to milk this for all it’s worth tonight, right?”

“Have you met me?”

Rachel’s pealing laugh was the only answer to Keith’s question.

*fin*

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