Forget Paris by: Laura


Pairing: Dawson/Joey


OL: "Evacuee" by Enya plays. Widespread shot-Joey and Dawson are standing at the boarding gate, solemn and sad. People hurry around them-they are the only ones standing still. Bessie and Bodie walk up slowly, and Joey sees them. Bessie is pushing a sleeping Alexander in his stroller. She runs to give them a hug.

BESSIE: You have fun in Paris, Joey. You have to tell me what it's like.

JOEY: (starting to cry) I will. I'll miss you.

BODIE: We'll miss you too. I'll tell Alex you said goodbye when he wakes up. (Joey nods with a faint smile. Bessie nods back, gesturing for Joey to go back to Dawson. Joey squeezes her sister's hand, and turns to go. Quickly she changes her mind and rushes back to Bessie for another hug.)

JOEY: Bessie, I wish Mom were here. (Bessie chokes back tears as she holds her little sister close.)

BESSIE: I wish she was too. I can hear her now...Joey! Going to France! Can you believe it? (Joey kisses Bessie on the cheek and bravely walks to Dawson. They look at each other, silent for a moment. Then Dawson reaches out and takes her hand, touching her fingers lightly. He looks down as their hands intertwine. Joey steps a little closer.)

DAWSON: Promise me that you won't forget me, Jo?

JOEY: (smiling) This isn't a movie, Dawson. I'm not going to run off with some French guy. (Dawson meets her eyes, and she knows he's being serious.) I could never forget about you, Dawson. (Slowly, they lean towards each other and kiss. Bessie rests her head on Bodie's shoulder and sighs sentimentally. The pair breaks away from each other gradually. Joey opens her eyes and looks into Dawson's.)

JOEY: It's only three months, right? It's not that long.

DAWSON: (touching her cheek, brushing away her tears.) Nothing's going to change, Jo.

JOEY: (forcing a smile) Yeah, I'll be back before I know it right? (They kiss again, but are interrupted by a voice over the airport intercom.)

INTERCOM: Last boarding call for Flight 765 to Paris, gate 123. (Joey picks up her carry-on bags.)

JOEY: I guess that's me.

DAWSON: Yeah, guess it is. (They kiss once more.)

BESSIE: Jo, you better get going. (Joey squeezes Dawson's hand.)

JOEY: I'll see you in August... (She starts for the gate.)

DAWSON: Bye, Joey.

JOEY: Bye, Dawson. (She hands her ticket to the woman collecting them.)

DAWSON: Joey! Don't forget to write! (Joey laughs)

JOEY: How could I? (She heads into the boarding tunnel, but is called back once more by Dawson.)


JOEY: Yeah?

DAWSON: I love you! (Joey breaks out into a wide, genuine smile)

JOEY: I love you too. (She waves good-bye and walks away.)


Dawson stares out the large plated glass windows as Joey's plane pulls away.


Joey stares out her window towards the airport, crying.


Bodie and Bessie walk up behind Dawson and watch Joey's plane take off. Bodie sets his hand on Dawson's shoulder.

BODIE: You okay, Dawson?

DAWSON: Yeah...I'll be fine.

BESSIE: She'll be back at the end of summer. It's not that long.

DAWSON: (sighing as he turns away from the window) Yeah, it's only three months. What could possibly happen? (OL ends)


Dawson is weaving his way through a crowd of people. Pacey and Jen are trying to keep up, and Bessie, Bodie, Gail and Mitch are running after them. The airport is bustling and noisy. Dawson glances up at the signs as he runs along.

DAWSON: Boston Airport gate 101, 102... (He keeps hurrying along.)

JEN: Dawson! Wait up!

PACEY: Slow Down!

DAWSON: Gate 110! Here it is, you guys! (He stops, and checks his watch.) Good, and we have time to spare.

PACEY: (catching up to him) Yeah, Dawson, we're half an hour early. What's the rush?

DAWSON: Sorry, sorry. I just wanted to be here in case the plane gets here early or something.

JEN: Planes are never early, Dawson.

DAWSON: I have to go to the bathroom-does anyone see a bathroom? (The rest of the group finally catches up with the kids.)

GAIL: Dawson, sweetie, you have to calm down. I know you haven't seen her in three months, but it's only half an hour more to wait-you can do it.

DAWSON: Ah, good, there's a bathroom. I think I might throw up. (He races past Mr. Leery down the walkway. Mr. Leery laughs.) I've never seen anyone so nervous about seeing their best friend in my life! I don't think I was this nervous on our wedding day! (Gail looks at him.)

GAIL: You weren't nervous?

MITCH: No, I was, just not as much as he is right now.

PACEY: I think I'm going to go to the bathroom really quick too. (He walks off, leaving Jen along with all the adults. She smiles, not knowing what to say.)


Dawson is standing at the sink, washing his hands. He starts to dry them as Pacey comes in. He nervously starts re-arranging his hair.

DAWSON: Do I look okay, Pace? How's my hair?

PACEY: Jesus Christ, Dawson! Pull yourself together! Can you hear yourself? (Dawson looks at him, not in the mood for jokes.) You look great, man. (Dawson sighs and turns back to the mirror.) What are you all worked up about? It's just *Joey*.

DAWSON: Pace, she's not just Joey any more. You know that as well as I do.

PACEY: Still, she's only been gone a little while. She couldn't have changed that much.

DAWSON: But what if she met someone over there? What if she's like, *over* me or something like that? A lot can happen in three months. Especially on a different continent.

PACEY: (grabbing a hold of both of Dawson's arms.) You know as well as I do Joey will *always* be madly in love with you. Now get out there and stop running around like an idiot. (He shoves Dawson out the bathroom door, then follows him out into the airport.)


Dawson is standing at the gate, anxiously waiting. He glances at his watch.

DAWSON: She was supposed to be here 15 minutes ago. What if they crashed? Oh god.

PACEY: Get a grip, Dawson. (People start to come out the boarding doors, and Dawson directs his full attention that way. He stands on tiptoe, trying to see if Joey's there. He sees her. She walks out, looking a bit confused and a little frightened. Dawson waves.)

DAWSON: Joey! Jo! Over here! (She sees him and breaks out into a huge smile. She pushes her way through the crowd towards him, and he squeezes his way through to meet her. They catch each other in their arms and kiss. The adults look on sentimentally, remembering the times in their lives when they felt that way. Jen's face conveys clear jealousy, but she forces it down and puts on a fake smile. Pacey smiles as Joey and Dawson walk back to the group, hand in hand. Joey gives Pacey a hug, then quickly hugs Jen, much to Jen's surprise.)

PACEY: Welcome back, Jo.

JOEY: Thanks. I missed you...a little. (He smiles.)

PACEY: I can see Paris hasn't changed you much, has it?

JEN: I'm really glad to see you, Joey.

JOEY: I'm happy to see you too. (They are both silent for a minute, quietly promising to each other to forget things that happened between them in the past. Bodie and Bessie grab Joey and pull her to them in a huge hug. She smiles.) I missed you guys too. (She looks around her.) Where's Alexander?

BESSIE: Oh, Jen's grandmother is watching him for us. We didn't want to bring him to the airport again. (Joey hugs Mrs. Leery and Mr. Leery, and Mrs. Leery kisses her on the cheek.)

JOEY: Okay, did everyone get a hug?

DAWSON: I didn't!

PACEY: (laughing) Dawson, you got a kiss-I wouldn't complain! (Bodie picks up Joey's carry-on bag and they head down the corridor.)

DAWSON: (giving Joey a kiss on the cheek, whispering in her ear.) Has anything changed, Jo?

JOEY: (giving him a playful shove) Of course not, stupid. (Dawson wraps his arm around her shoulders.) It feels so good to be back!

DAWSON: You don't miss Paris?

JOEY: A little. But, oh, Auntie Em, (She mockingly uses an overly-sentimental voice) there's no place like home! (Dawson grabs her and pulls her close, tickling her.)

DAWSON: You're such an idiot, Jo. (She kisses him quickly on the cheek.)

JOEY: I know. (He takes her hand and they continue walking.)


It's getting dark outside. The whole group is sitting at tables in the restaurant. Bodie is cooking up something in the kitchen. The sign on the window reads: closed. The Ice House is entirely devoted to Joey's arrival home, banners, balloons, the whole nine yards. Everyone is laughing as Joey relates the tale of how her tour guide got the whole student group lost in the French countryside.

JOEY: So, by this time it's 10:00 at night, and it's pitch black outside. And we have *no* idea where the hell we are. This girl named Liz is *bawling* in the back seat of the bus because she thinks we're all going to die or something, our tour guide is near tears in the front of the bus, it was all a mess. So, the driver pulls the bus over to the side of the road and says he's going to walk up to this farmhouse and ask for some help. So we sit there for a little while, until he comes back with this farmer named Jacque, who says he can direct us back to Paris. So the driver starts up the bus, and guess what?


JOEY: We're stuck in this *huge* mudhole and there's *no* way we can get it out. So, Jacque offers to take us back in this wooden cart he has that he uses for hay, but we have to wait until morning to leave.

BESSIE: I can't believe this actually happened!

JOEY: Unfortunately, it did. And it gets worse. (Everyone is interested now, so Joey continues.) So, we spent the night cramped into our tiny seats on this stupid bus. It was freezing. In the morning we all piled into this tiny little hay wagon, that totally reeked of cow manure. We take this really long, boring, bumpy road back to the city, and of course, taking a hay wagon into a crowded city full of cars isn't great either. By the time we got back to the hotel we were all ready to kill someone. (Bodie comes out of the kitchen, carrying a large cake, with "Welcome Home, Joey" written on it. Joey smiles. Dawson stares across the table as Bess lights the candles on the cake, mesmerized with Joey. Joey feels his eyes on her and meets his gaze.)

BESSIE: Make a wish, Joey.

JOEY: It's not my birthday, Bess.

BODIE: Make one anyway. (Joey giggles, and blows out the candles, leaving the room in almost complete darkness.)



Bessie, Bodie, Dawson and Joey walk out of the Ice House into the cold night. Joey shivers. Bodie locks the doors and takes Bessie's hand.

BESSIE: We have to go pick up Alexander. You two don't stay out too late, all right? Jo, please be home by midnight?

JOEY: Okay. (Bessie and Bodie walk away, leaving the pair alone. Dawson looks at Joey, and an awkward silence hangs in the air. Joey laughs.) Dawson, please don't tell me that with three months apart we have nothing to say to each other?

DAWSON: (laughing lightly) Sorry. (he reaches out to touch her face.) I was just thinking about how beautiful you are.

JOEY: (starting to walk down the dock) Don't get all mushy on me, Dawson. (Dawson catches up with her.)

DAWSON: And what's wrong with mushy, may I ask? (Before she can answer, he pulls her close and kisses her. She smiles as he pulls away.)

JOEY: Nothing's wrong with it. (They kiss again.) I missed you so much, Dawson.

DAWSON: Life wasn't the same here without you.

JOEY: (taking his hand as they continue down the pier.) I need a movie night. I haven't had one in forever.

DAWSON: As you wish. Hey, if we hurry we can catch the end of E.T. It's on TNT tonight.

JOEY: (laughing as they start to run.) Dawson! We both have it on tape!

DAWSON: But it's a totally *different* experience with *commercials*! (They keep running back to Dawson's house.)


The music for the closing credits of E.T. Joey sighs happily and starts to get up. Dawson looks up, stunned.

DAWSON: Jo, where are you going? We've only watched one movie!

JOEY: I know, but Bessie said for me to be home...I gotta go...(Dawson sits up straight, and gives her puppy eyes.)

DAWSON: But Joey...I hardly got to see you...come on. It's movie night. You *can't* leave.

JOEY: As convincing as those reasons are, Dawson, I have to go. (She heads to the window. Dawson gets up and goes to her.)

DAWSON: Is this a better reason? (He pulls her to him and kisses her passionately. She doesn't make a move to leave, so Dawson picks her up in his arms and lays her down on the bed. They kiss until Dawson pulls away and whispers in her ear.) Convinced yet?

JOEY: I'm not sure...(Their lips meet again. Dawson's hand slips underneath Joey's shirt, and Joey finally breaks the kiss and rolls over to pick-up Dawson's phone with a heavy sigh.) Just let me call Bessie and tell her. (Dawson smiles and Joey rolls her eyes as she dials the number.) But don't think you can control me with romantic physical actions after this, Dawson. It's just this once.

DAWSON: (laughing) Just this once, huh...okay, I can deal with that.

JOEY: (into the phone) Bessie? (pause) Yeah, I know it's late. I'm just going to stay here tonight, okay? (another pause) Yeah, I know I just got home-that's why I want to stay over here at Dawson's. (Bessie's voice is getting louder.) Bess, I haven't seen him in-We're just going to watch movies! God, Bessie. I've slept over zillions of times before. (Bessie's voice subsides.) Fine. Yeah. I know. See you tomorrow. (Joey hangs up and gets back onto the bed, this time pulling the covers over her.) What are we watching now?

DAWSON: Back to the Future is on next.

JOEY: Sounds like a plan to me. (Joey snuggles closer to Dawson and he wraps his arm around her.)


JOEY: Hmmm? (Her eyes are starting to close.)

DAWSON: It's good to have you home. I missed you.

JOEY: (drifting off) I...missed you too... (Her eyes close for good.)

DAWSON: Jo? (He waits for a reply, but when nothing comes he realizes she's asleep. He brushes a strand of hair away from her face gently and lightly kisses her forehead. Then he arranges himself comfortably next to her and goes to sleep.)


The couple is sleeping peacefully, still in each other's arms. Gail slowly opens Dawson's bedroom door, and watches them. Mitch walks up behind her.

GAIL: Look at them. Aren't they just the sweetest thing you've ever seen?

MITCH: They both look like angels. Remember when we used to be that innocent?

GAIL: (sadly) Yeah....such a long time ago... (Mitch looks at his wife, then at Joey and Dawson.)

MITCH: Here, leave them. (He takes his wife's hand.) Come with me. (Gail looks surprised. Mitch pulls her down the hallway to their bedroom. Hearing their footsteps, Dawson wakes. He nudges Joey slightly. She opens her eyes.)

JOEY: Mmmm...hey...Dawson...

DAWSON: Time to wake up, Jo.

JOEY: Oh come on, Dawson...a little while longer... (Dawson takes his arm from around her and sits up. Joey just rolls out the bed slowly, almost falling onto the floor. Dawson laughs and walks over to help her up.)

DAWSON: You've never been a morning person, have you? (Joey grunts in reply. Dawson offers her his hand and she takes it. He pulls her up from his bed with an amused smile.)

JOEY: Shut up, Dawson. I have jet lag, okay?

DAWSON: Oh sure, *jet lag*. (He's about to kiss her when she ducks out of his arms and starts walking for the door. Dawson looks confused.)

JOEY: (explaining) Breath, Dawson. (She heads down the hallway to the bathroom.)


Joey is brushing her teeth, looking in the mirror. Dawson is brushing his teeth too. Playfully he pushes Joey out of the way so he can spit in the sink.

JOEY: Hey! Oh, *that's* attractive, Dawson. (He swishes some water around in his mouth and spits it into the sink.

DAWSON: What can I say? I try. (Joey pushes him out of the way so she can get rid of her toothpaste.) Oh, by the way, while you were gone, I accidentally used your toothbrush once. (Joey just looks at him, disgusted.) What? I didn't mean to.

JOEY: So you tell me *after* I brush my teeth? Last time I ever leave my hygeine supplies over here. Disgusting.

DAWSON: (laughing and pulling her close) Come on, Jo. My tongue has been in your mouth. I wouldn't worry about germs from toothbrushes.

JOEY: True enough.

DAWSON: (leaning towards her) Is my breath better?

JOEY: Much. (They kiss.)

DAWSON: You're staying all day, right?

JOEY: (walking back to his room.) You know, Dawson, I do have to go home, unpack, and lead a normal life eventually.

DAWSON: (opening his closet.) I know. Just not for...let's say, the next week or so... (He tosses her a pair of his jeans and a blue t-shirt. She takes them and starts walking back to the bathroom.) Where are you going?

JOEY: To get changed! (Dawson looks at her.) What? You think I'd get changed in here?

DAWSON: You used to! Things don't have to be different *now*. (He takes off his own shirt and puts on his beige shirt. Joey rolls her eyes and shuts the bedroom door.)

JOEY: No peeking, Dawson.

DAWSON: I know the rules! (Joey hurriedly takes off her own shirt and puts on Dawson's blue shirt. Dawson catches a glimpse of her in the closet mirror. Joey finishes getting changed.)

JOEY: Okay, you can turn around. (She tosses her dirty clothes onto Dawson's floor.) So, what are we doing today? (He grabs her and kisses her.) Besides that...

DAWSON: I don't know. I hadn't thought past this yet. (Their lips meet again. Suddenly the bedroom door opens and Pacey comes in. He stops, seeing them.)

PACEY: Am I interuppting? (The two break away from each other quickly.)


DAWSON: Hey, Pace...what's up? (Pacey smiles as both his friends' faces color a faint red.)

PACEY: I was going to invite you guys to come on a picnic up at the park, but if you have *better* plans... (He looks from Dawson to Joey, raising his eyebrows to imply his meaning. Joey rolls her eyes.)

JOEY: You're such a neanderthal, Pacey.

PACEY: I wouldn't talk.

DAWSON: What time should we meet you there?

PACEY: An hour. A whole bunch of kids from school are going to be there. It's that annual Labor Day thing, but I think it's more of a last big bash before we settle into Junior year, I suppose. (Dawson and Joey nod.)

JOEY: We'll be there.

PACEY: (smiling) Great.



A large crowd of people have gathered, some adults, some kids. Dawson and Joey walk towards them, hand in hand. Joey spots Jen in the crowd and cringes slightly, but Dawson doesn't notice. They join the party.

JOEY: God, it feels so weird to be surrounded by the same mindless, pathetic people again. (She eyes a group of football players, who are standing by the grill. She spots Pacey, who sees them at the same time and starts coming over.) Speaking of pathetic....

PACEY: I heard that, Josephine. Jen! Dawson and Joey are here! (He motions for Jen, who is standing alone, to join them. She takes a deep breath and heads over to them. She looks as if she's walking right into Death's arms.)

DAWSON: Hey, Jen.

JEN: Hey, Dawson, hey, Joey. (Joey looks as if she's deciding something, then a smile spreads across her face.)

JOEY: Hi, Jen. It's really nice to see you. (All three of her friends look stunned.)

PACEY: What did France do to you, Joey? (Joey gives him an evil glare.)

JOEY: Bite me, Pacey.

PACEY: Come on, Dawson. Let's go for a walk before Joey gets out of hand and starts throwing things. I need*discuss* something with you. (Dawson kisses Joey on the cheek and follows Pacey. Joey turns to Jen.)

JEN: So...

JOEY: (on a mission) Look, Jen, I have to be the first to apologize. I was really unfair to you last year.

JEN: Jo, I understand. I mean, if I were you, I probably would've hated my guts too.

JOEY: You would've?

JEN: For sure. If some girl from New York just swooped down and stole the guy I loved right out from underneath my nose, I'd go buy a machine gun. (Joey laughs a little.)

JOEY: I realize now that it wasn't really your fault. I mean, you have about as much control over Dawson as I do, which isn't a lot.

JEN: (with a bitter note in her voice Joey doesn't realize) But now, he's yours. And don't worry, no one on this planet could stand in the way of that.

JOEY: (breathing a sigh of relief) God, it's nice to finally get that out of my system. I was going to write you a letter from France about all that...*stuff*, but I figured I better clear things up in person.

JEN: Well...thanks.

JOEY: (smiling) Okay. So are we friends now? Or...

JEN: Yeah, of course we are. It's what I always wanted us to be, remember? (Joey nods happily.)

JOEY: It's going to be nice to have a girl for a friend, for a change, like you said. (Jen forces a smile.) I'm...I'm going to go get something to drink. You want something?

JEN: Oh, no thanks.

JOEY: Okay. (Joey walks away, and Jen's smile falls immediately.)

JEN: (to herself) This is great. *Perfect*. (She watches Joey's retreating form.) Now I understand why she hated *me* so much. *Why* did I dump Dawson?


Pacey and Dawson both sit down on a bench near the edge of the pond. Dawson looks out at the water, obviously thinking about something. Pacey leans back and stares up at the sky.

PACEY: So, Dawson, let me ask you a question.

DAWSON: Shoot.

PACEY: Last night, did you and Joey...?

DAWSON: Pacey! Come on!

PACEY: (sheepishly) I was just *wondering* if...

DAWSON: Not that it's any of your business, but no, we didn't.

PACEY: Have you thought about it at all...?

DAWSON: I know *I* have. Constantly. All summer long. I don't know about her, though.

PACEY: Oh. I just figured that you guys made the transition from friends to a couple so easily and so quickly it was only natural that...

DAWSON: I know, that's weird, isn't it? It's like one day we're best friends, and then with one simple I can't keep my hands off her, Pace.

PACEY: Well, face it, Dawson. Before, you guys were basically a couple minus the touchy feely stuff. There was enough sexual tension between you to fill Yankee Stadium. And now, all that is being released, so...

DAWSON: That makes sense, I suppose.

PACEY: That's why I brought you these. (Pacey handed Dawson a couple of condoms. Dawson looked completely shocked and almost drops them.)

DAWSON: *Pacey*!

PACEY: What? Just in case, okay? (Dawson looks at them.) I know you would never want to go buy them yourself, so, there, you have what you need in case you and Joey ever...

DAWSON: (looking around him) Pace, where am I going to put these?

PACEY: Just stick them in your pocket for now. It'll be okay till you get home.

DAWSON: (still embarassed) Why are you so concerned about me and Joey's sex life?

PACEY: (taken aback) Well, I don't know. I guess it's just because you're both my friends and I don't want you to do anything stupid. (Dawson gets up and starts to walk away.)

DAWSON: Thanks, Pacey. I'm lucky to have a good friend like you, but...I don't think me and Joey are going to go that far any time soon. Joey's...she's not that type of girl.

PACEY: (getting up and walking to Dawson.) Dawson, I don't know if you've noticed the way Joey looks at you, but I can tell you right now that for *you*, she just might be *that* type of girl. (Pacey continues past Dawson down the path. Dawson looks surprised and stunned at the same time as his mind goes over what Pacey said.)


Joey is standing by a table someone set up for refreshments. She pours herself a glass of pop, feeling a bit self-conscious now that she's entirely alone. She stares around at the countless faces in the crowd. Someone touches her shoulder, and she jumps. She turns and sees Warren standing there. Her face becomes a perfect picture of digust and contempt.

JOEY: What do you want? I'm not having imaginary sex with you again, so forget about it.

WARREN: (sheepishly) I guess I deserved that. Listen, I haven't gotten to see you since last year, when that happened. I wanted to tell you how sorry I am that I spread that rumor about you...and me...

JOEY: (bitterly) The apology is a little late, Warren.

WARREN: I'd like to make it up to you, Joey. Cause to tell you the truth, I really *do* like you and I'd like to take you out sometime.

JOEY: (smirking) As *wonderful* as that sounds, I hate to inform you that I already have a boyfriend.


Dawson comes back into the main party and searches the crowd for Joey. He spots her over by the drinks, talking to some jock. She doesn't look happy. Dawson heads over.

WARREN: You already have a boyfriend?

JOEY: That's what I said, isn't it? (As if on cue, Dawson stops next to her and places his hand on her shoulder.)

DAWSON: (eyeing Warren.) Jo, can I talk to you for a second? (Warren eyes Dawson back suspiciously. Joey smiles at Dawson.)

JOEY: Sure. (She turns back to Warren as they walk away.) Oh, it's been *real* nice talking to you again. Next time make sure I'm in a coma before approaching. (Dawson takes her hand and pulls her through the crowd to an area where everyone is dancing. A stereo system is set up. "For You" by Tracy Chapman starts playing, and everyone starts to pair up for the slower dance. Dawson pulls Joey close.)

DAWSON: Who was that guy?

JOEY: That was just Warren.

DAWSON: (a bit jealously) Do you *know* Warren?

JOEY: (confused) I told you about what happened...back then, with him, didn't I?

DAWSON: (thinking) I don't remember anything about a Warren, Jo.

JOEY: (deciding she doesn't want to tell him the whole ordeal now.) Oh, I just slept with him once. (Dawson looks up, alarmed.) It was a joke, Dawson. Warren isn't anyone of consequence, in fact, he might not even be a human. Let's, okay? (Joey wraps her arms around his neck.)

DAWSON: (forgetting about Warren as Joey gazes into his eyes.) Okay... (They dance for a minute, just listening to the music. Joey looks up at him, questioning.)

JOEY: So, what did Pacey want? Did-(Dawson cuts her off, pressing his lips against hers. Warren watches this scene from the sidelines. He sees Jen staring at the couple also and walks over to her.)

WARREN: How long have they been together?

JEN: (absent-mindedly, not looking to see who asked the question.)Forever.


JEN: (looking at him, alarmed.) Oh, since June.


JEN: Yeah, but Joey was gone all summer...she got back yesterday.

WARREN: (watching as Joey moves even closer to Dawson as the song nears the end. He sighs.) Dawson's a lucky guy. (Warren walks away. Jen turns and grabs a napkin off the table, quickly wiping away her tears before anyone sees them. Pacey sees her do this, and quietly heads over to her. Dawson and Joey leave the party, slowly walking off into the woods.)

PACEY: Jen, are you okay?

JEN: (trying to sound convincing) Yes, of course. I just got something in my eye.

PACEY: Really. Was that *something* an image of Dawson kissing Joey?

JEN: (choking back tears) No...

PACEY: (grabbing her hand) Come on.

JEN: Where...where are we going?

PACEY: You're going to dance.

JEN: No I'm not.

PACEY: *Yes*, you *are*. (Pacey pulls her out onto the dance "floor" and starts dancing wildly. Jen can't help but laugh.)

JEN: Pacey, stop, you look like an idiot! (Pacey laughs)

PACEY: But you're smiling aren't you?

JEN: I guess!

PACEY: Then I suppose my idiocy is worthwhile then, huh? (He grabs her hand again and pulls her into the crowd. She shrieks with surprise.)


Joey and Dawson walk through the mess of trees and bushes, not quite sure where they're going, just knowing they don't want to stop walking together. Dawson lifts a branch out of the way and Joey ducks under. They come to a small clearing. Birds are chirping, and it seems almost picturesque.

JOEY: Wow, this is a really pretty place. (She turns to Dawson to see what he thinks but he's not focused on the scenery. He looks nervous, as if he has something to say and is not sure how to say it. Joey picks up on the signal.) What's wrong?

DAWSON: Nothing. (He continues walking.) It's just...Joey, I've been thinking a lot about..*us*, over the summer, and especially last night.

JOEY: (cautiously) What have you been thinking about?

DAWSON: Just how *serious* of a relationship it's going to be...I was wondering what *you* terms of how far we go.

JOEY: (taken aback, she wasn't expecting this) Um...I don't know... The possibility of us sleeping together has crossed my mind, I can't deny that. But all the consequences of acting on that desire have been flying around my head too, Dawson. And you know as well as I do that it's too risky for people our age to get that involved, cause, mistakes happen. And I'd rather not screw up my life before it's even started.

DAWSON: (moving closer to her.) I really respect that, Joey. Those ideas are all swimming in my mind too, and they're scary. But there's this one...overwhelming feeling that just makes all the others a total and complete blur.

JOEY: (quietly) And what's that, Dawson?

DAWSON: (he strokes her face gently.) The feeling that every time I see you I just want to touch you. That I want you close to me, and kissing me...I've never felt this way before in my life and as confusing and as new as it is... (His words drift off as he begins to kiss her. The kiss starts to get more involved, and Joey momentarily forgets herself. Dawson starts to kiss her neck, and for a second she ponders the decision to keep going or to stop. Finally, she pulls away, breathless.)

JOEY: Look, much as I want to...this isn't the time, *or* the place. You know that, don't you?

DAWSON: (letting out a deep breath)'re right...I know you're right.

JOEY: I just think we should wait until our judgement isn't clouded by the excitement of a new relationship or the fantasies we had while we were apart. (She takes Dawson's hand reassuringly with a smile.) Don't worry, I'm not going anywhere, Dawson. (Dawson returns her smile. The shot draws back as Dawson and Joey continue walking. Their conversation falls back into place as if the hard discussion that just took place never existed. Dawson points to something and Joey laughs.)



Pacey is searching through the crowd of people for someone. He looks concerned. He stands on his toes, trying to see over everyone's heads. Pacey spots Joey and Dawson returning from their long walk and goes to them.

PACEY: Where have you guys been? I've been looking for you for over three hours.

DAWSON: (looking at his watch in disbelief) We have *not* been gone that long.

JOEY: Have we?

PACEY: Yeah, three hours and 20 minutes to be exact. (He smiles wickedly) I guess we all know what *you two* were doing out there, huh? (Joey punches him.)

JOEY: You're perverted, Pacey. (She rolls her eyes and walks past him. Pacey looks at Dawson questioningly.)

PACEY: So, what happened?

DAWSON: Nothing. We *talked* about the *possibility* of it happening...but...

PACEY:'s not going to.

DAWSON: (shrugging) The outlook is not good. (Pacey sighs.)

PACEY: Damn. This town is in dire need of new gossip too. Oh well. (Dawson turns to walk away, and stops, shocked.)

DAWSON: It looks like we all might get some...

PACEY: Huh? (Dawson points off into the crowd, where Jen is dancing wildly with Warren. Her shirt is unbuttoned and her hair is a mess. She's practically throwing herself at every guy who passes by. Pacey and Dawson stand there, stunned. Joey comes back to the two guys, wondering what's going on. She follows their gaze.)

JOEY: Oh my god...

DAWSON: Come on. (He and Pacey rush into the group. Joey runs after them. Dawson and Pacey pry Jen off Warren, who she's currently clinging to. Jen collapses into Dawson's arms, and she looks up at him, letting out a long breath. Dawson's face writhes in disgust as he catches a whiff of her breath.) Pace, she's completely drunk.

JOEY: *Drunk*?

WARREN: Where...where are you...what do you guys think you're doing? (He stumbles off as he starts to look for Jen.)

PACEY: (helping Dawson hold Jen up. She's like a rag doll.) We better get her home.

DAWSON: Her grandmother is going to *kill* her.

JOEY: (snorting) Maybe she should've thought about that before she had about *twelve* beers.

DAWSON: Jo, that's not helping. Are you going to come with us? (Angry at Dawson leaving her to come to Jen's "rescue", she simply rolls her eyes and walks away. Dawson sighs unhappily and looks at Pacey.) Come on, let's go. (They clumsily start to carry Jen home.)


Joey is sitting alone, on the ground. She looks at her watch, getting annoyed. She watches as a couple walks past her, holding hands.

JOEY: Where are you, Dawson?

WARREN: They say only crazy people talk to themselves, Joey. (She gets up quickly, realizing Warren is standing behind her.)

JOEY: What do you want, Warren?

WARREN: (reaching out for her) Come walk with me, Joey.

JOEY: You're drunk, Warren.

WARREN: So are half the people here. It's a party. (Joey looks at him. He grabs her hand before she has time to think and pulls her away into the woods.)

JOEY: Warren! Let go! (He quickly leads her away, just far enough away from the party that they are alone.)

WARREN: (his words sound slightly numb) Why... are you going out with that jerk, Joey?

JOEY: You mean Dawson? Because I like him, that's why. Let go of my hand. (She wrenches her hand away from his.)

WARREN: Then why did he leave with that Jen girl?

JOEY: You know, for being intoxicated, your thoughts are much too well-developed. I have a feeling you're used to alochol? News flash, I only go for sober guys. (She tries to walk past him, but he grabs her arm and pulls her back.)

WARREN: (pushing her against a tree) I don't understand you!

JOEY: What don't you understand? (He doesn't reply. He pulls her to him and kisses her. She tries to get away, but he's too strong.) Warren! Stop! (He reeks of alcohol, and Joey desperately attempts to escape. She tries to raise her leg to knee him, but he has her so tightly pinned between him and the tree she can't move. Warren continues to kiss her. She squeals and shrieks, but can not cry for help.)


The house is deathly quiet. The doorbell rings, and Grams goes to answer it. She opens the door to reveal Pacey, Jen and Dawson.

GRAMS: Jennifer? Jennifer! Young man, what is going on? (Dawson and Pacey carry Jen into the house and lay her on the couch.)

JEN: (slurring her words together) Dawson...I love you... Pacey...I love you too...I love everyone...

GRAMS: Is she *drunk*? She's drunk! You two have some explaining to do!

PACEY: (taking offense) *We* do? We didn't have anything to do with this! We found her with some jock, completely smashed!

GRAMS: (slapping Jen's cheeks, trying to get her somewhat aware of what's going on) Jennifer Marie Lindley! Pay attention to me!

DAWSON: We thought we should bring her back, so we came as fast as we could.

GRAMS: The help is much appreciated but now you can leave, thank you. (turning back to Jen) Young lady, you've got *a lot* of explaining to do! (Jen just rolls over on the couch and throws up on the floor. Grams ushers Dawson and Pacey out the door.)

DAWSON: (concerned) Is she going to be okay?

GRAMS: She'll be fine. Thank you for all you've done, boys, but this is between her and me now. (She closes the door in their faces. Dawson turns to go down the steps.)

DAWSON: What could've possibly possessed Jen to do a thing like this? (He shakes his head sadly and he and Pacey head back to the park.)


Warren is still kissing Joey, but even more fiercely. Joey gets one of her hands free and starts hitting him as hard as she can. He throws her hand back and smashes her arm against the tree above her head. Tears are beginning to run down her face as Warren begins to touch her.

JOEY: Warren, stop! Please...


"Big Dumb Rocket" by Our Lady Peace is booming. Dawson and Pacey come back into the park. Dawson's eyes dart about, searching for Joey's familiar face. He doesn't see her, but sees Cliff among a group of girls. He runs over.

DAWSON: Cliff! Have you seen Joey?

CLIFF: Yeah, actually. She went off that way with Warren. (Dawson looks at Cliff for a minute, then looks to the direction Cliff pointed.)

DAWSON: Warren?

CLIFF: Yeah. Man, does Warren have the hots for her. I guess the two of them did it once and he-

DAWSON: What? (He hurriedly runs off to where Cliff saw them. He stops in his tracks as he sees Warren kissing Joey. He doesn't know what's going on or what to do, but he's clearly hurt.)

JOEY: Warren! Please... (Dawson hears Joey's voice, which is full of fear. He can hear her sobbing. He realizes what's really happening.) I mean it! (Dawson runs over and throws Warren off her. Warren is taken completely by surprise. Pacey has followed Dawson and sees what happened. He runs over. Joey falls into Dawson's arms, crying. Warren gets back up off the ground.)

WARREN: You little bitch! Why won't you just give it up! You've done it before!

JOEY: (angry) Stop saying that! Why are you so dillusional? (She tries to keep yelling but can't manage it. Warren goes to push Dawson but Pacey punches Warren full in the face, knocking him back to the ground. Dawson, although relieved at Joey's being safe, can not pretend he's not angered by Warren's mention of being sexually involved with Joey.)

DAWSON: What was he talking about, Joey? (Joey just buries her face in Dawson's chest.)

JOEY: Don't let him near me, Dawson, please...

DAWSON: Jo, *what* did he mean by all that? And what did Cliff mean when he said you and Warren... (Dawson can not even complete the sentence.)

PACEY: Dawson, why don't you wait until she's calmed down?

DAWSON: (angrily) No, Pacey, I want to know what's going on! (Joey wipes her face, trying to get control over herself. Warren is still on the ground, rubbing his head.)

JOEY: He didn't mean anything, Dawson, he's drunk. He has no idea what he's talking about or what he's doing.

PACEY: Come on, Dawson, let's get out of here, okay? (He tries to pull Dawson and Joey up. Neither move.)

DAWSON: Cliff said the same thing, Joey. I want to know the truth.

JOEY: (standing up, angry beyond belief) You want the truth, Dawson? Fine! Remember when you and Pacey went off on your little quest for manhood with Jen's ex-boyfriend?

DAWSON: (ashamed) Yeah...

JOEY: Well, Warren gave me a ride to school that day. And by 2nd period everyone was saying we had had sex. (Dawson stands up, stunned.)

DAWSON: You didn't, did you?

JOEY: Of course not! How could you- (She turns away, then turns back, angrier than before) Dawson, you don't know me at all!

PACEY: You guys, let's just go down a little...

JOEY: Shut up!

DAWSON: Joey, I-

JOEY: God, Dawson! Even now! I didn't ask for him to *attack* me and all you care about is your injured ego! And what if that rumor was true, Dawson? What if I did have sex with him? What would you do then?

DAWSON: I didn't mean to-

JOEY: (crying again) Forget it! I was here, on the verge of being raped by a drunken jock who apparently thinks he has a right to *my* body just because he likes me while you were off saving little Miss New York from her own *pathetic*, drunken state! It's so nice to know you care, Dawson. (She runs off. Dawson opens his mouth to call to her, but instead falls to the ground and buries his head in his hands. Pacey looks at him, feeling completely out of place in this conversation. Warren groans and tries to sit up, but falls back to the ground again.)

PACEY: Dawson...

DAWSON: How could I have been so *stupid*, Pacey? (He wipes tears from his face.)



Jen stirs, and groans as she opens her eyes. She coughs, and then clutches her head, wincing in pain. She falls out of bed onto the floor, and uses her desk as a post as she attempts to stand up. Clumsily, she stumbles downstairs, every loud noise paining her throbbing head. She walks into the kitchen, where her grandmother is reading the newspaper. Grams looks up, her face clouded with anger.

JEN: My head hurts so much...

GRAMS: (tightly) Well, you must have a *very* large hangover, Jennifer.

JEN: (confused) What...?

GRAMS: (standing up) You don't even remember last night? (Jen is still confused.) You don't remember Dawson and Pacey dragging you home, since you were too drunk to even stand on your own? You don't recall throwing up all over the living room?

JEN: Oh my god...what did I do?

GRAMS: *What* did you *do*? Jennifer, your parents sent you up here because you were making a mess of yourself in New York and I *thought* things were going better for you, I really did! But then you go and pull *this*! I trusted you, young lady! What am I going to tell your parents?

JEN: Grams-

GRAMS: And *never*, again, shall you take the Lord's name in vain as long as you're in this house! (Jen just sits down at the table and starts sobbing. Grams looks stunned. She had expected an argument, a defense, anything but this.) Jennifer, I'm sorry-

JEN: (throwing her arms around her grandmother as she sits down next to her) No, I'm sorry, Grams! I'm such a screw-up...Look at me! I can't even...I never meant for this to happen...! (Grams strokes Jen's hair lovingly.)

GRAMS: Why did it happen, Jen?

JEN: (sobbing) I don't was just...Dawson and Joey...I...

GRAMS: (realizing the problem) Ah, so that boy finally realized the girl climbing in his window was the girl in his heart, hmmm? I knew it would happen eventually, I think that's partly why I didn't want you going out with him...

JEN: I knew it would happen too...and I thought I could handle it and now...

GRAMS: (pulling away and looking Jen in the eyes.) Listen to me. You know as well as I do that those two belong together. But always remember Jennifer, *always* remember, that the good Lord has put an angel on earth for you too. There is someone out there, some man, who is destined to meet you one day...and you'll love him with all your heart, Jennifer. That's who your grandfather was to me, dearest. The Lord works in mysterious ways but it's all for the good of his children.

JEN: (for once giving in to her grandmother's Christian talk) You really believe that?

GRAMS: Of course I do. (She takes Jen in her arms again.)


Jen comes into Dawson's room. He is laying on his bed, still wearing his clothes from the day before. He doesn't move when she comes in so she goes to him.

JEN: Dawson?


JEN: don't look too good...

DAWSON: You don't look too hot yourself. (Jen glances in Dawson's mirror, and sees the dark circles under her eyes.)

JEN: Yeah, well, you know the reason for that. What's your reason? (Dawson doesn't reply) Actually, forget I asked. I already know.

DAWSON: (sitting up) How do you know?

JEN: I ran into Joey in town. She looked like she got hit by a bus. She told me what happened last night, with Warren...and you...She's really upset.

DAWSON: Well, she has every right to be. I was a total ass. Beyond belief. I deserve to be taken out into the fields and shot.

JEN: That's a little harsh, but...Dawson, the major problem with you is that you either overthink things, or you don't think at all. You have to find a happy medium.

DAWSON: (running his hands through his hair) I know...I tried calling her like twenty times already today. Bessie says she's not home.

JEN: She's at the movies.

DAWSON: (surprised) What?

JEN: That's where she said she was going when I saw her. (Dawson jumps up from his bed racing to the door.)

DAWSON: I have to go talk to her. I'll see you later! (He runs down the stairs, leaving Jen sitting in his room alone. She looks around her, then gets up slowly and walks out.)


Dawson enters the darkened theater and tries to find Joey. His eyes grow frantic as he doesn't see her. Finally he spots her, sitting in the very back row, alone in the dark. She is crying softly. Dawson quietly sits down next to her. She doesn't speak.

DAWSON: (whispering) Jo...I was a total jerk and I completely understand if you don't want to talk to me right now. When I saw you with Warren last night...I was so scared. I thought I'd lost you. With Cliff saying that about you I didn't know what to think. I heard you crying and...Joey, if he had hurt you I don't know what I would've done. I would've killed him. (He looks at her, seeing how she responds. She doesn't look at him.) But the possibility of you having been with another guy...Joey, I love you. I want to be the first guy you love. I want to be the first guy you share...that experience with. I want...I want...Jo, I want to be your first everything. (Joey looks at him, tears streaming down her face.) If I had known Warren was going to...I would've left Jen there to do whatever she wanted, believe me. (Joey looks down at her hands, and Dawson reaches out to touch her hair.) Last night I was so angry and so confused...completely blinded by jealousy. When I first saw you with him I thought you were there by choice.

JOEY: (whispering back) How could you think that? Dawson, Warren is just a stupid jock who was determined to add my name to his long list of conquests. Another point on the scoreboard. I'd *never*... I'd never want to be with anyone but have to know that by now.

DAWSON: I know...I was just so insecure about this whole sex issue between us and when I heard that about you and him...I completely lost it...

JOEY: (sniffling) Maybe I should've just stayed in Paris. Then this never would've happened. (Dawson sets his hand on her cheek and looks straight into her eyes, leaning over to kiss her.)

DAWSON: Forget Paris, Jo. (They kiss.)


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