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Dawson awoke the next morning feeling a warm body up against his. He smiled as the nights events came back to him. They were dancing close at the restaurant and before he knew it, they were racing to his hotel room where they made love a few times that night. He knew the reason for the two in bed together was not the result of them drinking since he wasn’t drunk and neither was she. He lay there, his head propped up by his hand and watched her as she slept. A few minutes later, his stomach grumbled. He sat up and looked over at her before bending down to put his jeans and boxers back on, deciding he should order room service before she woke.
Twenty minutes later, their food arrived. Dawson was careful not to make too much noise, taking the cart from the woman and bringing it into the bedroom. With his stomach grumbling, demanding food, he began to check out what was on the cart. While he was checking out what was there, Joey began to stir and finally woke up; clutching the sheet as she sat up.
“Hey,” Dawson said.
“Hey,” she said softly.
“So uh, I figured if you were as hungry as I was, I should...get some food up here before you woke up,” he explained. Joey smiled sweetly as he sat down beside her, dressed from only the waist down. Joey couldn’t help but stare at his tanned skin along with his muscles; muscles that hadn’t been that toned the last time she had seen them. She hadn’t noticed at least -then again, she hadn’t slept with him six months ago.
“I’m not sure what you wanted, so I told them to throw a bunch of different things on the cart,” he explained, motioning to the cart beside the bed.
“Thanks Dawson, but you didn’t have to do that,” she said, trying to locate her clothes from the corner of her eye.
“It’s fine, really. Besides, I was getting kinda hungry,” he said before reaching over to the cart, grabbing a strawberry from the bowl.
“Here,” he said, handing her the strawberry.
“Thanks,” she said, taking the fruit. Instead of eating it right off, Joey stared down at it. “Um, what time is it?” she asked after a few minutes of silence.
“A little after eleven,” he said. Joey groaned and began searching for her dress on the floor beside the bed. He watched as she retrieved her black dress, and quickly tugged it on over her head.
“Is there some place you need to be?” he asked curiously, noticing her sudden hurry.
“No it’s just... your sister,” she said.
“What about her? You said she was staying at a friend’s house.”
“Yeah, but she’s gotta come home sometime. If I’m not there when she gets home..” she trailed off.
“Jo, Lily is turning seventeen in a couple of weeks. I’m sure she can handle being alone in the apartment for a few hours,” Dawson assured her.
“Yeah, but she knew I was going out with you last night. If I come home wearing the dress I wore last night, not to mention looking like I’ve been up all night..” she trailed off, looking at Dawson who grinned.
“Jo, who cares,” he said.
“I care. I don’t want her knowing I was having sex with her brother last night,” she said, getting out of bed, wearing her wrinkled dress.
“Okay, but I was kinda hoping we’d talk about this; about what happened last night,” he said.
“What about it?” she asked, quickly slipping her panties back on.
“Oh I don’t know, what it meant, what that makes us now; all that stuff people in our situation would be discussing after a night like last night.” Oh no! Was he seeing someone else and now feeling guilty? He hadn’t mentioned anything but that hadn’t stopped anything before..
“Yeah, well, hopefully other people aren’t stupid enough to make the same mistake twice,” Joey said as she searched for her shoes.
“Wait a second, you’re saying last night was a mistake?” he asked.
Joey looked up at him, tugging one of her shoes back on. “I’m sorry, I shouldn’t have said that.”
“Well that’s obviously what you were thinking seeing how you said it,” Dawson said.
“No I didn’t mean that. Would you stop putting words in my mouth?” Joey said as she continued her search for her missing shoe.
“I’m sorry, but I’m starting to get a sense of deja vu from your nineteenth birthday,” he said, standing up. Joey just stood there for a second, silence engulfing the room.
“Look, Dawson, I made my bed and now I just gotta lie in it,” she said, referring to the choice she had made years ago over the two men.
“Joey what are you talking about?” he asked, having no idea what she was talking about.
“I’m sorry, I gotta go,” she said, reaching for the door.
“Joey, please, don’t leave,” he pleaded. The look on his face along with the pleading in his voice almost made her stay. Then she thought back to years ago and all the hurt she had caused him choosing Pacey not once, but twice. She couldn’t bare to do that to him again, despite what happened between them the night before. He was probably going to tell her that it was a mistake and wanted to be sure they could still be friends. The thought alone made her chest hurt.
“I-I can’t. I’m sorry,” she said quickly before disappearing out the door, leaving Dawson standing there feeling as if all the wind had been knocked out of him.
Joey brushed the tears from her face, and tried to straighten herself out as she stood outside her apartment door. She didn’t want to let on that she had cried the ride home; in case Lily had beaten her home. She inhaled a deep breath before opening the door, realizing she had forgotten to lock it the night before; being so excited about seeing Dawson.
“Lily?” Joey called out, setting her keys down on the counter as she walked further into her apartment. After calling her name once more and getting no response, Joey realized she wasn’t home from her friends house yet. She looked down at her outfit, realizing she was still in the dress she had worn the night before. She groaned, making her way into the bedroom. Joey was so caught up in thought that she didn’t realize the red light on her answering machine, beside her bed, blinking until she was dressed into her pajamas. Slowly walking over to the left side of the bed, she pushed the play button and listened.
“Hey, it’s me. Your probably half way back to your apartment; I gotta tell you, I was tempted to run after you after you left my room.” A pause. Joey slowly sat down on the edge of the bed as she continued listening. “Jo, I don’t know what happened this morning, but I’m hoping we can get past this and maybe...” Another painful pause.
“Maybe what?” Joey asked the machine as she sat there, tears in her eyes.
He sighed. “Maybe we can talk about this.” She heard him chuckle lightly on the other end. “I hate talking to these things, and I guess I don’t know what else to say. Please call me back.” With that, the other line was disconnected and the answering machine beeped, indicating the message was finished playing. Suddenly without being able to control herself, Joey burst into tears, crawling into her bed wanting to disappear. She couldn’t believe she had been stupid enough to have sex with him, knowing there is no future between the two; all thanks to her. But she had been caught up in the moment; tempted to escape the world in the safety and comfort of his arms. She now saw the error in her judgment, knowing she was going to be suffering a lot of heartache now.
“Joey?” A voice said twenty minutes later or so, causing Joey to jump in surprise. She had been so busy crying that she hadn’t even heard Lily enter the house, let alone walk into her room. “Ohmigosh; Joey what’s wrong?” Lily asked as she walked over to the bed, sitting down beside Joey.
“Nothing, I’m-I’m fine,” she said, obviously lying as she quickly wipe away tears. By the looks of her puffy eyes, Lily knew she had been crying for a while now and hard.
Lily began to rub Joey’s back. “I know you’re not alright because you’ve been crying,” she said, her voice low and calm.
“I...messed...up,” she choked between sobs. “Dawson and I...” she trailed off, burying her face in her hands.
“Shhh, it’s okay,” Lily said as she hugged Joey, silently cursing her brother for whatever had happened.
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