Save the Last Dance for Me by: Katy

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Disclaimer: Curses, foiled again! Why can't I own DC? Maybe because I didn't create the characters. That could have something to do with it. Oh, but I do own a few characters, such as Sweet Kathleen, Nice guy Scott, and über-B*tch Valerie. Who's up for making her die a slow painful death? Before we break out the pitchforks and torches, just let me use her to create conflict. All stories need their villains...

"Oh I know
That the music's fine
Like sparkling wine
Go and have your fun
Laugh and sing
But while we're apart
Don't give your heart
To anyone
Cause don't forget who's taking you home
And in who's arms your gonna be
So darling
Save the last dance for me
Ooh baby don't you know I love you so
Can't you feel it when we touch?
I would never never let you go
I love you oh so much"

-"Save the Last Dance For Me" by the Drifters

Joey had been going down a shame-spiral since that encounter with Dawson. She had cancelled photo shoots, lost her appetite, and was looking pale nd gaunt. No one knew how to help her. Jacqueline was so worried about her, that she called Bessie and sent Joey home for a vacation.

As soon as they heard Joey was home, Jen and Pacey high-tailed it over, hoping to see their spirited Joey back from L.A. with all kinds of tales to tell. Instead, they found a depressed, sad Joey with a bleak outlook on life.

Jen and Pacey tried everything to cheer her up. Pacey did his Braveheart skit, Jen brought out cookie-dough and Leonardo DiCaprio flicks. Pacey even did scenes from his favorite movie, "The Mighty Ducks." Nothing worked. Hoping to get a rise out of her, Pacey mooned Joey. She didn't even flinch.

Not aware that Dawson was the reason for her sadness, Jen and Pacey went over to his house to convince him to invite Joey over for movie night. As they climbed up the stairs to his room, they heard two voices, a male and a female, laughing inside his room. Standing just outside of his cracked door, they peered in and saw Dawson and Valerie having a tickle-fight on his bed. It suddenly struck them why Joey was so devastated.

"That bitch," Jen whispered to Pacey, "I move we go in there and kick her sorry little, pathetic butt."

"I'm all for it," Pacey said, raising his fists. Then, he stopped. "Maybe we should talk to Dawson before we go breaking out the torches and pitchforks," he said, "Maybe we can change Dawson's mind."

Jen groaned, because she was all ready to inflict some pain on the girl who hurt her friend, but she knew Pacey was right. "Okay," she said, "but if he isn't convinced, it's going to take the entire football team to keep me from seriously injuring *Valerie*."


Joey sat on her bed, listening to her mom's records from the 60's. "It's All In the Game" was playing.

Many a tear has to fall
But it's all in the game
All in the wonderful game
That we know
As love
You have words
With him
And your future's looking dim
But these things
Your hearts can rise above
Once in a while he won't call
But it's all in the game
Soon he'll be there at your side
With a sweet bouquet
And he'll kiss your lips
And caress your waiting fingertips
And your hearts
Will fly away
Soon he'll be there at your side
With a sweet bouquet
Then he'll kiss your lips
And caress your waiting fingertips
And your hearts
Will fly away

Joey's eyes welled up as she listened to the song. "Yeah," she said to the crooning singer, "well they don't always come back. Not when it's you that broke their heart first."

Pacey and Jen walked in her room. Looking at their sad faces, Joey realized that they probably knew why she was upset. They said nothing, just crossed the room and hugged her. Joey threw her arms around both of them and just cried.

"No," Joey said sniffling, "thanks anyways, but I want to be the one to do it."

Joey laughed despite herself. "So," she asked, "Have they picked out their china pattern yet, or have they moved on to the Crisco?"

"Don't talk like that, Jo," Pacey said, wiping her tears away, "Dawson still loves you. He's just using Valerie to replace the memory of you. You just need to let him know how much you love him."

"And just how do I do that?" Joey asked, wiping her eyes.

"Well," Pacey said, a glimmer sparkling in his eyes, "I do have this one plan..."

"I've had my fill of plans," Joey said, "no thanks."

Pacey made a puppy dog face and Jen said, "better let him tell you, Joey, or he'll start with the Mighty Ducks skits again."

"Oh, please no!" Joey said in mock horror, "those movies freak me out. That one guy is the spitting image of Pacey."

"And a brilliant actor he is!" Pacey said, "but seriously, let me tell you."

"I don't have a choice, do I?" Joey said, with a half-smile.

Pacey and Jen shook their heads. "Nope," they said.


Dawson and Valerie arrived at the dance, arm in arm. Valerie was looking around, to make sure that Cliff and Jen saw her with Dawson. She noticed Jen making a face at them, before turning back to Cliff.

Looking over at Dawson, she noticed his eyes were fixed on a tall slender brunette, standing nervously with Pacey Witter and his girlfriend, Kathleen. Looking closer, Valerie noticed that it was Josephine Potter, the model...and Dawson's ex-girlfriend.

'Great,' Valerie thought, 'the dreaded ex. If she knows what's good for her, she'll stay away from Dawson.'


Joey laughed nervously at a joke Pacey made. Kathleen looked at the two of them...the way Pacey hugged her when she looked down, the way he tried to cheer her up, how he saved his best jokes for her. Kathleen would have been jealous....had Pacey not been dating her, and had Joey not been hung up on Dawson.

Pacey glanced over to Jen, who was whispering something to the DJ. The DJ nodded, and Jen turned to Pacey, mouthing, 'ready.'

Pacey turned to Joey. "Ready?" he asked.

"Not really," she said with a weak smile, "I'm feeling a little queasy, but I'll manage."

"Great," Pacey said, watching as the DJ reached for the microphone, "because it's time."

"This one's for all you lovers out there," the DJ said, "especially for...and let me make sure I get this right....Oompa Loompa and the model?"

Dawson's face went white as the first cords of "With Every Beat of My Heart" played. "Pacey," he muttered. Well he wasn't going to let Pacey embarrass him. "Let's dance," he said, to Valerie, pulling her on the dance floor before she responded.

"It's not going to work," Joey said to Pacey.

"Yes it is," Pacey said, pulling Joey out on the dance floor with him. Whirling her to where Dawson and Valerie were beginning to slow dance, Pacey said, "may I cut in?" Dawson was about to respond when Pacey pulled Valerie to him and pushed Joey in Dawson's arms, whirling a protesting Valerie away.

"I'm leaving," Dawson said, pulling away, but Joey stopped him.

"One dance?" she asked, her eyes pleading.

Dawson's reserve melted. "Fine," he mumbled. They danced in silence as the music played.

With every beat of my heart
There's a beat for you
In every toast of wine
there's a toast for you
In all my conversations
You're my inspiration
In everything I do
I do it for you
Although we're so far apart
My love is true
true true
In every beat of my heart
there's a beat for you

Dawson involuntarily pulled Joey closer, closing his eyes. He absorbed the way she felt against him, the way her hair smelled like oranges.

Joey closed her eyes and drew closer to him. Suddenly, she felt him stiffen. "Get the hell away from my date," came Valerie's voice.

Joey turned and came face to face with the petite girl who was staring at her with more hatred than anyone ever had. "Excuse me?" Joey said.

"I said get away from my date," Valerie said smirking, "You have no right to be dancing with him."

A small crowd had formed around them. Even the DJ had stopped to stare. Pacey, Kathleen, and Jen walked up to see what was going on.

Joey was through mixing words with this snobbish little brat. "It was just a dance, *Valerie*" she said, mocking Val's high pitched voice, "besides, you just couldn't wait to sink your claws into my boyfriend, could you," Joey said.

"Your EX-boyfriend," Valerie said, "the way I see it, you don't have much of a claim on him."

"Valerie, Jo," Dawson said slowly, "this is neither the time nor the place."

"No, no Dawson," Joey said glaring at Valerie, "I think we should just get this out right now. Who's it going to be? Me or Little Miss Mini Skirt?"

Valerie glared and put her hands on her hips. "Well at least I'm not the charity case."

"Yeah," Joey said, "but you're the town basket case."

Valerie let loose this shriek and let out a punch aimed at Joey's face. It missed her cheek, just grazing her ear, but Joey turned to Valerie and let loose a massive punch that landed square on her nose."

Valerie howled and covered her bleeding nose. There was a shocked silence, then Pacey and Jen began clapping. Slowly, more people began clapping for Joey, including Cliff, Nellie, and Dawson."

Joey stormed outside. Dawson ran off after her, calling her name.

The rest of the people left the bleeding Valerie to go dance, except Pacey who stood their excitedly, wondering out loud how Joey could let loose a killer blow like that.

Valerie stood up angrily and stormed over to where Cliff and Jen were standing. "Cliff," she said sweetly, "Will you take me home?" She pointedly ignored Jen.

"I don't think so, Val," Cliff said, "not until you go apologize to Joey for that little scene. You started the fight, so you go finish it." After saying that, he turned to Jen and said, "would you like to dance."

Jen smiled at Cliff and said, "I'd love to." Smiling at Val, who was fuming, she said, "ta ta."

Valerie stood there glaring. "This isn't over Jen," she said, "not by a long shot."

Nellie walked up with a wet towel. "This is for your nose, Val," she said.

"Nellie, thank god," Valerie said, "I need someone who understands..."

"Save it, Val," Nellie said, "you were way out of line. Joey's not my favorite person in the world, but you had no right to act like that. It was just a dance. Besides, if you are going to get her back, you never create a scene, you spread gossip. You of all people should know that."

Nellie walked off, leaving Valerie all alone to fume in silence.


Joey sat outside, rubbing her fist. "Jo," Dawson said, walking up.

Joey turned away. "You probably are just coming to tell me you never want to see me again," she said, "so I'll save you the trouble."

"I'm not coming to say that," Dawson said, "I just want to know if you are okay?"

"Yeah, I'm fine," Joey said.

Dawson sat next to her. "You know," he said, "I've never had a girl fight for me before. It's kind of a rush. It's very dramatic, I wish I had my camera..."

Joey elbowed Dawson and he laughed. They were both silent for a moment, then Dawson continued. "Can we work this out," he asked.

Joey smiled and kissed him. "Is that a good enough answer?" she asked.

Dawson smiled. "I think I need one more," he said, leaning in to kiss her again.

They kissed under the moonlight. As they kissed, some music drifted out of the dance.

Tonight you're mine, completely
you give your love so sweetly
tonight, the light of love is in your eyes
but will you love me, tomorrow?
Is this a lasting treasure?
Or just a moment's pleasure?
And I believe the magic of your sigh
Will you still love me tomorrow?
Tonight with words unspoken
you say that I'm the only one
But will my heart be broken
When the night meets the morning sun?
I'd like to know that your love
Is a love I can be sure of
So tell me now
and I won't ask again
Will you still love me tomorrow?
So tell me now
and I won't ask again
Will you still love me tomorrow?

Despite the magic of the moment, both Dawson and Joey could only wonder if tomorrow they would be asking this too.

To Be Continued In "Happy Together"

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