After Dawson and Joey got back to Dawson's house, they both changed their clothes for dinner at the Icehouse. "What should I wear?" Dawson asked. "I mean, do I wear khakis and a shirt since we're announcing our engagement, or jeans and a shirt to look like we normally do?" Joey shook her head and laughed.
"You're worse than a girl! No one cares what you wear; you could go in your birthday suit and no one would notice. They may talk, but not to your face at least." She thought for a moment. "Okay, take that back, please wear something!"
After they were changed, (Dawson had decided on jeans and a red t-shirt, while Joey was in jeans and blue sweater) they told Mrs. Leery where they'd be, but they didn't know what time they'd be back. Gail smiled and told them she'd see them soon. Dawson raised an eyebrow, but stayed silent. "Ready to go, Jo?" he asked.
"Yup," she responded. The two linked arms and started for dinner.
"SURPRISE!" a whole lot of people yelled. Dawson and Joey blinked as they stepped into the resturant. Standing before them were Pacey, Jack holding Amy, Doug, Andie, Audrey, Bessie, Mr. Potter, Alexander, Lily, Bodie, and Grams, all there with humongous grins on their faces. Joey looked around.
"Only one word comes to my mind right now: WOW!" she exclaimed. Audrey ran over and gave Joey a hug.
"Oh my God!" Audrey said. "I haven't seen you in ages!"
Since Audrey had started jabbering on about her tour with John Mayer, Joey had a chance to looked around. Her eyes soon found Pacey's and she turned away, not ready to deal with the pain she may have caused him. Unfortunately, he grinned and strolled over.
"Well, Miss Potter, what a coincidence I should bump into you here, of all places," he laughed. Then his tone became serious. He noticed Joey was avoiding his gaze. "Jo, what the heck? Why aren't you feeding me a sarcastic comeback?" Pacey questioned.
She looked up at him. "Why didn't you call me? You never called. Even when you heard I was in the hospital, a true friend would have called." With that she turned and walked over to talk with Andie. Pacey watched her walk away.
I couldn't see you. I wanted to talk to you about what happened, but I couldn't. I couldn't cause you anymore pain. Don't you understand? It's my fault you got in the hospital in the first place. If Dawson hadn't come in time.... he thought to himself. He didn't want to think about what could have happened if Dawson hadn't come in time. It was just too painful. He too, walked away, and he went to talk to and tease Dougie...
"So, Jack, how is life? Are Amy and Doug treating you well?" Dawson asked Jack.
"Well Doug's cool, Amy on the other hand, won't stop waking up for midnight feedings. On the other hand, she's the only piece of Jen that I've got." Dawson and Jack grew silent, remembering their friend. Neither of them had really gotten over her death.
Before everyone knew it, dinner was being served, and everyone was seated. Joey looked at Dawson to signal it was time. Dawson stood and said, "Attention everyone!" He cleared his throat and started again. "Most of you have known Pacey, me, and Joey since we were in diapers, scary enough as it is. It seems to me, that all three of us have some very important news. I'd like to congratulate Pacey and Andie on their engagement. May you both be very happy. But Joey and I also have some news of our own. A couple weeks ago, I asked Joey to marry me and she said yes. The wedding is in July, and everyone is invited. Thank you." Everyone began to applaud wildly.
Gail could be heard proudly saying, "I always knew they would spend the rest of their lives together. It's been plain since day 1."
After a couple hours, around 11, everyone started to leave. Gail, Bessie, Bodie, and Mr. Potter had left around nine, since Lily and Alex had to go to bed. Doug left with Amy so Jack could spend some time alone with his friends.
Soon only Dawson, Joey, Jack, Andie, Pacey, and Audrey were left at the restaurant. Jack cleared his throat and broke the silence. "So how has everyone been?" he asked. Everyone took turns telling. Andie went first.
"Well, as you all know, I'm not living in Italy anymore, and I've secured a position at the Supreme Court; plus Pacey and I are going to be married in June, so my life is becoming a dream come true."
Jack went next. "Doug and I are incredibly happy together, Pacey stop gagging." Everyone laughed and turned back to listen. "Amy has been looking at pictures of Jen, even though she really doesn't know what she's doing. Doug and I want her to know everything about her mom." He stopped and rubbed his eyes, as did everyone else. "That's my life up til now." The room was so quiet you could've heard a pin drop. Then they continued with their stories.
The third person to tell was Audrey, who was brimming with excitement. "Oh my gosh, you guys will not believe my life! I was singing at a bar, when someone, who turned out to be John Mayer, came up to me, told me I was incredibly talented, and asked me to go on tour with him as a back-up singer!" By now she was gasping for breath since she hadn't taken one in her whole explanation. "I got back about a month ago, and then Jack here, called me about this little get-together. How's that for a life?" Everyone laughed.
Next up: Pacey. "Well everyone, my life hasn't really been that much different from when you last saw me. I got the girl, I lost the girl, went to the Bahama's, met another girl, who by the way is sitting next to me, and proposed to her. We're gonna be married in 6 months, and what happens next has not yet been revealed." The group nodded in approval.
No one noticed that Joey hadn't looked up from her pop. She didn't like her and Pacey's relationship being talked about that way by him, but she decided to let it go. It was her turn anyway.
"Well, as Pacey said, we broke up a little while back, I was in the hospital for a little bit to take care of some problems, Dawson and I have been dating for a while, and as you all know, we're getting married. We want all of you to be in the wedding, and we'll talk to you about it a little bit later. Other than that, nothing has happened." She finished.
Dawson looked up. "Well, goody, it's my turn! Alrighty, my life, lets see...I met Spielberg. He is the most amazing person, besides Joey of course (everyone laughed), and he is helping me think of ideas for movies, or another season of The Creek, etc. Joey and I are getting married, as I think everyone should know by now. That's about it."
Audrey, still energetic, looked at her watch. "Did you guys know its 1:30 in the morning? Wow!" Everyone just stared. Then they burst out laughing.
"Well Audrey, you certainly are the queen of random thoughts!" Joey laughed. "We probably should get going though, I'm pretty tired."
As the gang hugged, shook hands, and said their good-byes, Pacey and Joey's eyes met and Pacey could see the anger flash like lightning in a storm. He broke eye contact and turned to close up.
~In Dawson's Room~
"You're pretty quiet, Jo," Dawson observed.
"Are you okay?" Joey looked up. "Yeah, I'm fine." she said unconvincingly. "You're lying, Jo, I can hear it in your voice. What's wrong?" Dawson asked.
Joey sighed and looked up at Dawson. "It's just seeing Pacey again. It's like nothing ever happened, and he doesn't seem to care about me at all anymore. He didn't call me in the hospital, he didn't ask me how I was doing, he just...didn't care." She looked down, and Dawson, seeing her sadness, put his arms around her.
"He does care, more than you know. Pacey talked to me on the phone while you were in the hospital. He feels so guilty, because he thinks/knows he contributed to your downward spiral that put you in the hospital. But Joey, he won't tell you that, you know it, and I know it. He doesn't want to hurt you anymore." By now, Joey had rested her head on Dawson's shoulder, tears streaming down her face, and Dawson thought maybe he had said to much, so he shut up.
"He should've told me," she sobbed. "I don't blame him for any of it."
Dawson kissed her forehead. "I know; try to talk to him in the morning. For now, try and get some sleep." He fell asleep with her in his arms, as she quietly cried herself to sleep..
Pacey whistled to himself as he went to unlock to Icehouse for the day. His whistling stopped short when he saw who was waiting at the door. "Hey Pace," Joey whispered.
"Hi." Pacey answered back. For the first time in their lives, they were both speechless. Joey broke the silence first.
"So Pacey, why didn't you call me in the hospital?" Pacey looked down uncomfortably.
"I think you know why." he said quietly. She stared intently at him.
"I do, but I'd like to hear it from you."
He looked up. "Well Jo, we both know that it was right after we broke up that you had that little hospital issue, so what better cause for me to come up with than, well, me? We both know I caused it--"
"No, that's not true!" Joey interupted.
"It was my fault, and mine alone. Don't think it was your fault for a single second. I might have tried to put life on hold because I was upset with myself for hurting you, but it was my choice and I knew it was going to hurt you. It was MY fault, not yours. Stop blaming yourself for it. If you don't want to hurt me, well, you're hurting me by blaming yourself. Just stop and let it go."
Pacey laughed nervously. "Well that was a mouthful, Potter."
Joey smiled. Things were back to normal. "Pace, do you know how long it took me to plan out that speech?" She laughed and they talked as he unlocked for the coming day.
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