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'You bring me up, you bring me down
You turn me inside out
And I'd give it all up just for you.'
- Give It All Up by The Corrs
Dawson looked away from the broken figure before him. He'd spent hours thinking over what had happened, and what his decision would be. But he'd never thought that she would offer herself to him. Somehow he'd been the victim in every scenario, not her. Not Joey. He'd typecast her as the bad girl, only out for the sex, not wanting relationships. But to know that he'd hurt her? What she was saying made sense. It did hurt more knowing that it was your decision. But the thought that all of his friends hated the woman he loved? His parents were happier for him to be with a woman who had wanted to abort their child than Josephine? If he'd known earlier, he would have done something. He would have done nothing. He wouldn't have proposed. But now… he was due to get married in an hour and a half.
In his mind, Dawson weighed up the two women. One had been his first lover, a passionate and feisty woman who had broken his heart more times than he cared to count. The other knew nothing about his past life, and cared only for him in the present. His wife to be was patient, kind and understanding. Sometimes she drove him mad with her kindness. But she loved him and accepted him. And a marriage had to be based on friendship, not passion. After all, when the passion faded, what are you left with? Joey had no right to just walk back into his life and turn it all upside down, no matter how much he loved her. Had loved her, he corrected himself.
"Joey, I'm sure you will understand that I have to ask you not to attend the wedding," he said, struggling to keep his voice level. She frowned, confused at what he was saying. "I don't choose you," he clarified. Her face instantly crumbled into tears once again, only this time she turned on her heels and ran. Half way down the aisle, she turned back to face him.
"I love you," she muttered before finishing her run out of the church. Dawson shut his eyes and raised his head before turning to where his parents were stood, horrified at the scene they'd witnessed.
"I…" stumbled Gail.
"Don't say anything. I don't want to know. I'm getting married. If you don't agree, then you're more than welcome to leave now."
"Dawson, we support you no matter what your decision. If you think that Josephine will make you happy, then you have our blessing," Mitch said slowly.
"She makes me happy…" Dawson said, drifting off.
"Then you've made your choice," Mitch finished for him. Dawson nodded, and turned away, walking into a vestry room.
Almost two hours later, Dawson was at the altar with Josephine, and just about to say his vows. The service and the time between Joey leaving and the guests arriving were a blur to him. He'd expected to remember every second, memories to last a lifetime, memories to use in a script. But instead, he was left with Joey's last words ringing in his ears, and her crumbled face as she finally realised he had not chosen her. "Choose me." Was he sure that he was making the right choice? He didn't know any more. He just knew that he couldn't stand the thought of losing her over again. Never seeing her.
"Dawson, repeat after me," the priest said, snapping Dawson out of his reverie. "I, Dawson Mitchell Leery."
"I, Dawson Mitchell Leery," Dawson replied, his heart pounding and his knees getting weak. This was it. This was the defining point in his life. His two possible paths lay out before him.
"Take thee, Josephine Deborah Carter."
"Take thee…" Dawson stumbled. His heartbeat got faster, louder in his ears. He felt a stabbing pain in his gut, and made his decision. "Joey," he cried out. "Josephine, I'm sorry. You're not the one. Joey is. I need Joey. I choose Joey." A collective gasp came up from the guests. Josephine lifted her veil, and passed her flowers to her chief bridesmaid, and carefully took aim. Dawson barely registered the sound of her hand striking his face. She then turned on her heels, and ran out of the church, followed by her parents.
Pacey approached Dawson, shaking his head. "Is she here? Did she come?" Dawson asked. Pacey shook his head further.
"Dawson, you're too late, man. Her plane left about half an hour ago."
"Her plane?" Dawson repeated.
"She decided to go again. She's gone with Jack back to England. They got the last seats on a flight leaving and they've gone. You didn't choose her, Dawson. And you've broken her heart." Pacey's words cut deeply into Dawson. Finally grasping the fact that she'd gone because of him, Dawson sank to the floor, tears forming quickly. He hears his parents' voices talking to Josephine's family. This was a mess. And once again, Joey had gone. But she was right. It did hurt more if you'd made the decision.
That's it for today, I'm afraid. You can see why I needed to end it here. But the saga continues in part seven, when we go to England with Joey as she sinks deeper. Feedback at the usual address is appreciated, especially as the last two pieces haven't gained that much. Let me know what you think.
21st August 2000
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