Disclaimer: See part 1
Author's Note: I'm amazed at how much good feedback I'm getting since I didn't expect any. Keep letting me know what you think at firstname.lastname@example.org.
"So how was your lunch with Dawson?" Jake asked.
"It was good. I asked him to give me away."
"And did he accept?"
They sat on a bench in the ruins, just having finished their romantic semi-candlelit dinner. Joey had only been able to find one candle and it wasn't anywhere near romantic, but she used it anyway. He had his arm around her and she relaxed into him, letting her head rest on his shoulder.
"And what did you do all day?" she asked.
"Not much. Sat around, talked to my sisters, met up with some of the guys."
"Oh," she said. "Don't you love this place? Isn't it wonderful?"
"Yea, it's great," he agreed.
"This was always kind of a special place for me and Dawson. It just seemed so mysterious and wonderful. We used to play here when we were kids."
"It certainly is romantic," he said. He reached down and turned her head to him. He kissed her long and slow. She sighed, losing herself in it. He kept on kissing her, gradually getting more heated. His hands started to move from her cheek, to her neck, to her back. They laid back on the bench and she felt the hard stone against her. She pulled away.
"Sorry to ruin the moment, Jake, but this is really uncomfortable."
He complied, getting up and pulling her back to an upright position.
"Hey, no problem. You know me, I can be romantic whenever I want to. I'm the master of creating a perfect moment."
"Oh, I haven't forgotten," she said with a seductive smile. "We just need to move. Here, I know some pretty good spots." She took his hand and stood, leading him away.
He walked beside her, looking out at the view. "It's a gorgeous sunset, Jo."
She stopped to look at it. "You're right. It's beautiful."
He wrapped his arms around her, pulling her close to him.
"Let's just stand here and watch it," he said.
She agreed silently, just watching the sky as the sun vanished little by little. When it was finally over, she spoke again.
"You know, somebody once told me that the most beautiful sunsets are out on the west coast. So while I was there, I made sure I saw it. I went out to the beach and watched and the sky turned a whole rainbow of colors and it all reflected off the water and I thought it was the most spectacular thing I had ever seen. But now, watching it in a place I love with a person I love, I think this is much better."
"I was just going to say something terribly romantic, but I think you beat me by a long shot," he said.
"Someone's got to keep you in line. Why else do you think I decided to marry you?"
"Wait, I thought it was my charming wit and boyish good looks?"
"My elegant charm and animal magnetism?"
"Nope. Strike two."
"My trust fund?"
"Oh, wait, that's right. I forgot about that one. Okay, so I married you for your money. You don't mind, do you?" she asked coyly.
"Just as long as I get something out of it," he said softly, moving in for another kiss. She gave it easily. They held each other close, feeling the warmth of each other's bodies as their lips met. He continued to kiss her as he bent down. She didn't notice, concentrating solely on the kiss. Then all of a sudden, she pulled away swiftly and cried out as he swept her up in his arms.
"Put me down!" she cried.
"I'm just practicing," he said. "I have to carry you over the threshold in a few days and I wanted to make sure I could."
"Ha ha," she said, pretending to laugh. "You're so funny."
"I love you," she whispered, moving her face closer to his.
"I know that too," he replied, kissing her again. After a few moments, they separated.
"You know, this isn't the best position for kissing," she said.
"Really? What would you prefer?" he asked.
"Put me down and I'll show you," she said. He put her on her feet and she sat on the cool grass patting the empty space beside her.
"Looks good to me," he said, raising his eyebrows.
Another round of kissing began.
"We can't be too long," Joey said between liplocks, "I have a date."
"Yes, with my Spanish lover Raoul."
"Ah, yes. Well, that's okay. I have one too."
"Yes. Her name is Lola," he said, singing.
"I know, I know, she's a showgirl. I get it."
"Jo the cynic," he sighed. "You always ruin my jokes."
"But you don't mind if I bring Lola to the wedding, do you?"
"Of course not. But I'm bringing Raoul," she said.
"Well that leaves me with a dilemma," he said, pulling away and looking her in the eye.
"Who do I take home? The date or the wife?"
She looked at him solemnly. "Good question."
He saw the far away look in her eyes. "What's wrong?" he asked.
"Nothing. My life is just really ironic, that's all."
He didn't know what to say, so he just sat in silence, watching her. He knew something was on her mind and whatever it was, she wouldn't tell him until she wanted to. Finally, he gave in trying to satisfy his curiosity.
"Please, Jo," he said, "tell me what you're thinking."
She looked up at the stars and a wistful smile appeared on her face.
"I don't think you want to know," she said quietly.
"No, I do. Please tell me," he pleaded.
She looked him in the eye for just a moment, and then moved her gaze to the ground.
"I was just thinking how weird it is that I brought you here. I guess I'd forgotten about it completely. But I don't know how I did that. Maybe I'm just trying to make this place something I can share with you to cover it up, but I don't think it's working. Maybe it's not supposed to."
"Jo, what are you talking about?"
"Dawson. See, this…this is more than just a special place of ours. Our junior year when we finally got together that last time, we did it here. When I was going off to college, this is where we said our goodbyes. It was our special place. And, more than that, this was where we had our first time. Ever. It was completely cliched. It was prom night. We came here after the dance and talked for a little while and then it happened. Right where we're sitting, actually. After that, we thought that things would be different for us. As if the fact that we'd consummated our love meant that it would last forever. But just a few months later, we both left and being far away from the person you love isn't easy. It took us forever to break up. Dawson was so sure that things would work out. Finally, over Christmas break, we saw each other again. And it wasn't there anymore. And we both knew it the moment we saw each other."
Jake wrapped his arms around her. "I'm sorry, Jo," he whispered.
"I guess I was just trying to make this someplace special for us, too. Maybe I was having some subconscious desire to transcend what Dawson and I had here and make sure that we could do it, too and that we could have magic and all those things." She tried to hold back the tears, even though she didn't know why they were coming. "I'm sorry. I shouldn't have done this. I shouldn't have brought you here."
"It's okay. I understand. Look, we can talk about this," he said, consoling her.
"No," she rose to her feet, wiping the tears from her eyes angrily. "I have to go." She ran from him, and he didn't even bother to go after her. He knew how she worked. When the time came, she would come back to him. But until then, he wasn't going to bother her. He leaned back and gazed at the sky. The stars were coming out and the moon was uncommonly bright. There was so much about her that he would never be a part of. It hurt him to know it. Yet all he could think about as he breathed in the cool night air was her.
She stood looking out over the creek, wondering what she should do. No, that wasn't right. She knew what she should do. But she wanted to do something completely different.
Jake, she had to remember Jake. They were getting married in just a few days. She loved him. She was sure of that.
But all she'd thought of tonight, all the memories and the feel she got being in these familiar places. She'd been with Dawson to every one of them countless times. They'd loved each other, hadn't they? There'd been more there than just puppy love. It had been real and passionate. Looking back on it gave her a physical rush of longing. They'd been so perfectly happy those two years they'd been together. Nothing in the world could upset her when she was in his arms. Back when Jake didn't exist for her. Now she was about to make the biggest decision of her life and she was having second thoughts. She only knew one place to turn.
She nodded her head firmly. She would follow her heart this time, not her head. Maybe it would lead her back to something wonderful.
And with that resolve, she started to climb the ladder.
End Part 4
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Jake or Dawson...Jake or Dawson...who will the lucky man be? Let me know what you think at email@example.com