In The Heat of the Night by: Laura

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Joey and Dawson are sleeping soundly in his bed. Dawson's alarm suddenly goes off, and Joey is jolted out of her sleep. She slaps the annoying buzzer off and flops back onto her pillow with a sigh.

JOEY: Dammit, Dawson, I don't want to get up!

DAWSON: (murmuring, his eyes still closed.) Good, Jo, cause you don't have to. It's Saturday. (Joey sits up and whacks him with her pillow.)

JOEY: Then why the hell did you set the alarm? (Dawson laughs.)

DAWSON: Calm down, Joey. I must have forgotten to switch it off last night. (Joey hits him once more, and he grabs the pillow from her.) Peace, Josephine, peace.

JOEY: (sighing) Fine. (She falls back onto the bed and closes her eyes.) Maybe I can get back to sleep. (Dawson smiles.)

DAWSON: Oh, no you don't! (He jokingly pulls her to him.) I think you owe me an apology for your undue use of violence. (Joey laughs and kisses him. Then she pulls away, holding her nose.)

JOEY: Now I think *you* owe *me* an apology for your morning breath. (Dawson grabs his own pillow and hits her.)

DAWSON: I do *not* have bad breath in the morning. (He pins her down and she smiles wickedly.)

JOEY: I don't know if I believe that, Dawson. You might have to kiss me *once* more so I can be sure you're telling the truth. (Dawson honors her request willingly.) Thanks for being so obliging. (He sits up.)

DAWSON: Hey, what are best friends for? (Joey swipes the side of his head with her pillow and he falls to the right side of the bed.)



Dawson literally dances in. Pacey is standing behind the counter, and he looks at Dawson strangely. Dawson stops with a smile.

PACEY: Was that a Fred Astaire or Gene Kelly impersonation?

DAWSON: (pretending to think) Uh...little bit of both. (He swings behind the counter, humming to himself.)

PACEY: (curious) And why are you so light on your feet today, you little aspiring Savion Glover? (Dawson actually laughs at Pacey's lame joke, and he knows something is up.) Okay, *what* is going on?

DAWSON: That's just it. *Nothing* is going on. The world is utterly perfect in every way.

PACEY: (smiling wickedly, he punches Dawson's shoulder) Dawson, my man, did you and Joey get...*down and dirty*, if you get the drift? (Dawson punches him back.)

DAWSON: You know what your problem is, Pace? You base everything on *sex*. It like, controls your mind.

PACEY: I take it that was your way to weasel out of the question so you wouldn't have to tell me no. (Dawson rolls his eyes at Pacey, and starts searching the shelves.) Besides, in the real world, everything *is* based on sex. It's just the way of it.

DAWSON: (taking a video down) You're completely insane. (Pacey takes the video from him, and Dawson searches for another.)

PACEY: Yeah, but I'm also completely *right*. (He reads the label on the video.) Casablanca? (He takes another video from Dawson's growing stack.) An Affair to Remember? Out of Africa? Dawson, man, this is heavy romance-Out of Africa made my *mother* cry. And she's a completely callous woman. (Dawson stands up, setting a copy of Top Gun on the counter.) What are all these for?

DAWSON: (heading down an aisle) Pacey, where did Nellie move the copy of Barefoot in the Park?

PACEY: (shrugging) How would I know? Nellie would probably be insane enough to put it under foreign comedy.

DAWSON: (finding the copy of the movie) Great, here we go. (He walks back to Pacey, and Pacey looks at him knowingly.) *What*? Me and Jo are having another movie night tonight!

PACEY: (smiling) Well, didn't you two have one last night? (Dawson nods, not seeing his point.) You know, Dawson, you stocking up on Redford and Cruise only leads me to *one* conclusion.

DAWSON: And that would be?

PACEY: I'm not the *only* one with sex on the brain, ya hypocrite. (Dawson picks up the movies and sticks them in a bag, and sets them off to the side of the counter.)

DAWSON: Pacey, when are you going to get it through your thick skull? It's just movie night. Innocent. Routine. Normal. *Nonsexual*.

PACEY: *You*. *Joey*. *Alone*. *Bed*. Try those key words and insert them into your mental computer, Dawson. See what comes up on-screen. (Dawson just shakes his head.)

DAWSON: For the millionth time, me and Joey aren't ready for that. You ought to watch some old romances, Pacey. It's nice when a simple kiss is the romantic climax of the film. (He smiles.) Kisses don't always have to lead somewhere to be fulfilling, my friend.

PACEY: What idiot told you that? (Dawson just shakes his head, pretending to be sad.)

DAWSON: (heading to the back room.) You're a lost cause, Pacey. (He disappears, and Pacey just shrugs.)

PACEY: Like I haven't heard that before. (He crunches up a piece of paper and throws it into the trash can.)


Joey walks into the kitchen. Bessie is pulling a sheet of cookies out of the oven. Alexander is sleeping in his baby seat on the table. Joey smiles as she watches him sleep.

BESSIE: What are you so happy about?

JOEY: The human alarm is turned off. Peace and quiet reign once more.

BESSIE: (checking her watch) Yeah, but for just awhile longer. It usually only lasts for 15 minutes. (She sets the tray down on the counter, and turns to her sister.) So, Joey, how are things going?

JOEY: What things?

BESSIE: You know, school, friends...relationships...

JOEY: (laughing) Oh, so, in other words, how are things with Dawson? (Bessie laughs back.)

BESSIE: I'm just vaguely curious. It's not every day my little sister gets serious about a guy. (In the background, through the Potter's open screen door, Dawson can be seen walking up the porch stairs. He hears Joey and Bessie talking and decides not to interrupt a sister-to-sister moment. Joey seems hesitant about talking to her sister. Bessie looks at her pleadingly.) Come on, Jo. I'm stuck here with Alexander and I don't get any good girl talk any more. I want some details.

JOEY: What details?

BESSIE: Well, is Dawson a good kisser? (Joey gasps slightly, taken aback.)

JOEY: *Bessie*! That's really none of your business-I mean, you've known Dawson since he was born. Do you really want to hear about how he *kisses*?

BESSIE: (smiling, and sitting down next to her sister at the kitchen table.) Well...*yeah*, I do want to hear about how he kisses.

JOEY: Fine. You want to know how he kisses? (She smiles.) Take the *best* kiss Bodie ever gave you, and multiply it by at *least* ten. (Dawson hears her say this, and smiles to himself, blushing.)

BESSIE: That good, huh?

JOEY: (getting dreamy) And he has this way...of looking at me...I can't describe it. But Bessie, when I feel his hands on my body, and his lips on my skin...when it's so dark in his bedroom that we can't see each other...but somehow we know exactly what the other is doing and thinking... (She lets out a deep sigh and her sister looks at her, alarmed.)

BESSIE: (her eyes wide) You're not trying to tell me you and Dawson*Please* tell me you're not-

JOEY: (standing up, laughing) Relax, Bess. I'm just messing with your head. I gotta go. Dawson's waiting on the front porch "unintentionally" eavesdropping. (Dawson looks into the house, alarmed. Joey is looking at him. Bessie laughs.)

DAWSON: Hey! I wasn't eavesdropping!(Joey walks to the door and opens it. She walks out, past Dawson and heads down the steps.)

JOEY: Sure you weren't. Bye, Bessie! (She waves good-bye to her sister.)

BESSIE: Bye! Have fun! (Joey just rolls her eyes. Dawson gives Bessie a small wave and follows Joey down the stairs.)


Dawson walks away from the food counter, popcorn and pop in his hands. Joey had just come out of the ladies room, and is waiting patiently for him by the door to the theater. He smiles and makes his way over.

DAWSON: (handing her the popcorn.) I got extra butter.

JOEY: Great-trying to clog my arteries, Dawson? (Dawson looks at her.)

DAWSON: You said you *wanted* extra butter, dork. (Joey sticks a piece of popcorn into Dawson's mouth.)

JOEY: I know I did. Just jerking you around again. (They walk into the theater.)


Joey searches the theater for a couple of good seats. They walk slowly down the aisle. Dawson stops towards the middle and gestures towards a row in the center section.

DAWSON: How 'bout right here? (Joey looks.)

JOEY: Sounds good. (She passes him and walks down the row. He sits next to her, setting the pop in the holder between them. Joey hands him the popcorn. He hands it right back, with fake anger.)

DAWSON: Hey! I paid for it! *You* can hold it. (Joey rolls her eyes with a smile.)

JOEY: Fine. (She unwraps a straw and sticks it into the cup, then takes a sip. She looks up and sees Dawson looking at her.) What?

DAWSON: Nothing. (he pauses) Just this. (He kisses her lightly. She raises an eyebrow as he pulls away.)

JOEY: Since when has kissing become "nothing"? (Dawson kisses her again.)

DAWSON: I can't win with you, can I? (Joey kisses him back.)

JOEY: No, you can't. You never will, so get used to it. (Dawson smiles as the lights dim.)

DAWSON: Okay, I will. (Joey returns his smile as he places his hand over hers. The coming attractions start to play.)



Pacey is standing on the front porch of Jen's house. He knocks on the door, and waits patiently for someone to come to the door. The door opens slowly, and Jen's grandmother looks at Pacey suspiciously. Pacey smiles, but his smiles fades.

PACEY: Um...hello. Is Jen home? (Mrs. Ryan looks him up and down, passing judgement. She opens the door fully and lets him inside, reluctantly.)


GRAMS: Yes, she's home. I'll go get her. (Grams shuts the door behind Pacey as he walks inside, and then she heads upstairs to Jen's room. Pacey hears her knock on Jen's bedroom door and tell her he's here. Jen follows her grandmother back downstairs. She greets Pacey with a smile.

JEN: Hi, Pacey.

PACEY: Hi. You aren't busy or anything, are you? (Grams heads back into the kitchen, but she watches the scene wearily.)

JEN: Oh, no. I was just sitting around, doing some last minute homework. Why?

PACEY: No reason. I just didn't want to interrupt anything. I was just wondering, you know, how you were doing.

JEN: (confused) How I'm doing?

PACEY: In terms of Dawson.

JEN: (laughs) I'm fine, Pacey, thanks. (She opens the front door and walks out onto the porch. Pacey follows. Mrs. Ryan hurries to the window to see what's happening.)


Jen stops at the railing and looks out to the creek with a sigh. Pacey sits down on the porch swing.

JEN: I don't know what Joey told you about this whole situation, but it's clear she told you something, am I right?

PACEY: (smirking) She may have told me a little, but I'm pretty capable of seeing how other people are feeling. If you're an outcast long enough, you realize there's not much to do except observe other people. That's why me and Joey are so amazingly understanding. Well, me anyway.

JEN: Well, what do you *understand* about me, Dr. Witter? (Pacey laughs)

PACEY: I don't know. You're a tough one. So far, I have you categorized as someone who came here to start her life over like a normal teenager, but is finding it hard because she has a grandmother watching her every move from a living room window... (Jen glances over at the window and she sees the curtains quickly close. She giggles.) And I also guess it must be hard to just start over, to try to break all your old habits and forget old experiences, right?

JEN: (sighing) It is. I mean, I go around like I'm walking on eggshells half the time. (She look over towards Dawson's house.) You want to know why I dumped Dawson?

PACEY: Sure.

JEN: It wasn't wasn't even anything he did, or I did. I got nervous. All my other boyfriends before...actually, *any* guy I knew before...everything ended up pretty serious between us. (Pacey looks at her questioningly) Like, in *bed* serious. And...I don't know...I came here to get away from all that and I liked Dawson so much...

PACEY: That you were afraid it was going to end up the same way?

JEN: Well, you know what they say. You can't teach an old dog new tricks. So I guess I just took myself out of the situation. So I wouldn't make the same mistake again.

PACEY: (sadly) Jen, you really ought to trust yourself more. Cause it's clear to me that you have *more* than enough will power to keep yourself from falling back into your New York lifestyle.

JEN: (smiling at Pacey) Yeah, I guess I do. (They are both quiet for a moment.) Well, Pacey, let me ask *you* something. We're getting so deep into my personal problems, I think yours deserve an equal amount of probing under a microscope...

PACEY: Okay then, ask me anything and I'll answer you honestly. (He smiles wickedly and walks over to her, leaning against the railing.)

JEN: Will you? (Pacey nods.) Okay....then tell me *honestly*...what are your feelings for Joey Potter? (Pacey looks at Jen, stunned. He smiles nervously, then frowns, then smiles again.)

PACEY: Jen, you can't be serious.

JEN: I am deeply serious. (innocently) I know you used to like her and I was just wondering...

PACEY: (somewhat angrily) Don't *wonder* anything, Jen. I don't *feel* *anything* for Joey. (He looks Jen in the eyes.) I have to go. (He hurriedly walks down the porch steps and stalks off. Jen smiles knowingly.)

JEN: Sure, Pacey. Could've fooled me. (She walks back inside, glancing once more at Pacey's retreating form.) Well, at least we have one thing in common, Pace. The person we love is in love with someone else. (she sighs and closes the door.)


Joey and Dawson are sitting on a marble bench near the water, holding hands. The pond is calm, the air is cool, and the night is beautiful. The sky is full of stars, and the moon is a perfect crescent. Joey sighs happily.

JOEY: Look at us, Dawson. I feel like we're being set up for a Kodak commercial. (Dawson laughs lightly.)

DAWSON: Maybe we are being set up. You never know. (Joey smiles back at him.) Want to go for a walk? It's too nice of a night to just sit here. (He stands up, offering Joey his hand. She takes it and stands up too.)

JOEY: Sure.

DAWSON: (as they start walking) I rented a whole bunch of movies. They're back in my room. I figured we could start watching them when we get back. Is that okay?

JOEY: Course it is. You know, I think you and I could single-handedly support the entire movie rental business?

DAWSON: Obviously we could. That's part of our charm. (Joey smiles.)

JOEY: So, what movies did you rent? Spielberg's lesser known classics?

DAWSON: Naw. I rented some old romantic classics. (Joey looks repulsed.) And some relatively newer ones too. Well, new comparative to the others I rented.

JOEY: Which ones?

DAWSON: An Affair to Remember, Casablanca, Out of Africa, Top Gun-

JOEY: (disbelieving) You consider Top Gun to be a *romance*?

DAWSON: (shrugging) With a shot of testosterone, I think that's what I categorize it as, yes. (Joey shrugs back at him.)

JOEY: If you say so.

DAWSON: Why, what would *you* categorize it as?

JOEY: (thinking) Action. Probably. (Dawson laughs.)

DAWSON: Let's compromise and call it an Action Romance. It can be both. Like a Romantic Comedy.

JOEY: Fine. Or we could just watch it without labeling it as anything.

DAWSON: Come on, Jo-everything must have a label.

JOEY: (smirking) Then what do you label *me*?

DAWSON: (thoughtfully, he stops and takes Joey's hands, looking straight into her eyes) The love of my life. (Joey smiles genuinely as Dawson leans forward to kiss her.)


Pacey is sitting on his bed, looking sad. Without warning, his bedroom door flies open and Doug barges in, looking angry. He's in full uniform. Pacey sits up straight, alarmed, then rolls his eyes after he realizes it's only Doug.

DOUG: Pacey-what are you doing?

PACEY: What does it look like I'm doing?

DOUG: Do you have any idea what time it is?

PACEY: (standing up) Um, time for you to get the hell out of my room? (He starts to push his brother out, but Doug pushes him back.) Hey, watch it, Douggie. I'll claim police brutality.

DOUG: Enough with the wisecracks, loser. Obviously you don't remember what you were supposed to do tonight.

PACEY: (wearily) Obviously not. What was I supposed to do tonight?

DOUG: (pulling him out into the hallway.) You were supposed to meet Dad down at the precinct at nine-ring any bells?

PACEY: (shaking his head) Nope. I'm not going.

DOUG: Yes, you are. He sent me here to get you and I'm not about to get my ass kicked if I come back without you.

PACEY: (sighing) What the hell does Dad want me to do now? If he thinks he's going to stick me doing forms and paper shuffling again, he's *wrong*. The business of law enforcement does not appeal to me in any way.

DOUG: (shoving Pacey as they head downstairs.) Well you better pretend it does. It's about time you stopped acting like such a screw-up. Working at a video store is not going to get you *anywhere*, I can tell you that right now.

PACEY: (under his breath as he angrily storms out the door to Doug's police car) Who says I have to go *somewhere*? (He gets in the back seat, and Doug climbs in front. They drive away.)


Dawson and Joey are sitting next to each other on Dawson's bed, the covers pulled up to both their waists. They are both wearing their day clothes, and both are exceptionally focused on the television screen. Joey smiles as Maverick (Tom Cruise) ends his short serenade to Charlie (Kelly McGillis) in the bar.

CHARLIE: How long have you two been pulling this act?

MAVERICK: Since...

CHARLIE: Puberty?

MAVERICK: (laughing) Right, puberty. Actually, we've only done this twice.

CHARLIE: And how'd you do?

MAVERICK: Well, I crashed and burned on the first one. It wasn't pretty.

CHARLIE: And the second?

MAVERICK: I don't know-I'll tell you in the morning but it's looking good so far. (Dawson glances at Joey, wondering something.)

DAWSON: Jo, would you ever go for a guy like that?

JOEY: A guy like what? Like Maverick or like Tom Cruise?

DAWSON: Either or. (Joey hits him with her pillow)

JOEY: (as he bats the pillow away.) I'd go for a guy like you. (She gives him a light kiss on the lips, then the kiss deepens and becomes more involved. Dawson pulls her closer, but slowly they break away. Joey turns back to the movie. Dawson smiles and lays back, pulling the blanket closer to him. Joey lets out a deep breath and snuggles close to him, laying her head on his chest as he wraps his arm around her. She takes the remote from him and turns the TV off.) I'm going to sleep. I can only take so many hours of straight movie watching.

DAWSON: (setting the remote on his night stand and switching off the light.) Same here. (He pulls her closer and sighs happily.) Night, Jo.

JOEY: Night, Dawson. (Her eyes start to close)

DAWSON: I love you.

JOEY: I love you too. (She attempts to go to sleep once more.)


JOEY: Go to sleep before I *kill* you, Dawson.

DAWSON: Sorry. G'night, Joey.

JOEY: Whatever. Good night, John-boy. (She closes her eyes, and is soon completely asleep. Dawson watches her for a moment, then closes his eyes too.)


The room is dark, except a few rays of silver moonlight streaming in through Dawson's closed curtains. The curtains suddenly let in a huge burst of light as they open, and Pacey climbs in. The ladder rattles as he steps off of it and into Dawson's room. Joey stirs slightly. He tiptoes over to her, and lightly shakes her. She is still laying next to Dawson.

PACEY: (whispering) Joey! Joey! Wake up! (She murmurs something in her sleep, and he shakes her a little harder. He glances at Dawson, but he doesn't move.) Jo! (She opens her eyes slowly, and is very confused.)

JOEY: Pacey? What are you doing here? Are you crazy? (She sits up.)

PACEY: Shhh! Don't wake up Dawson. (Joey rolls her eyes.)

JOEY: He wouldn't wake up if a tornado hit. *Why* are you here? (she glances at the clock.) It's three o'clock in the morning! (Pacey looks at the clock too.)

PACEY: I'm sorry-really I am. Just come outside. I need to talk to you.

JOEY: (grunting as she struggles to sit up.) You're going to die, Pacey. (Pacey heads for the window. He looks back at her, and she is alarmed by the look on his face.)

PACEY: Jo, halt on the death threats, okay? I wouldn't be here if it wasn't something serious. (He disappears down the ladder. She grabs her jacket from the floor and glances at Dawson before stepping out the window. He is still sound asleep.)

JOEY: (grumbling) He couldn't have woken up Jen? (She sighs and climbs down the ladder.)

Joey and Pacey are sitting together on the bench near the water. Pacey seems exceptionally worked up, and Joey is stunned. Pacey says something and she places her hand on his shoulder.

JOEY: He's not serious, is he?

PACEY: (seriously) He sounded like it, Jo.

JOEY: He can't just expect you to pack up your stuff and just...*leave* like that, can he? It's not human!

PACEY: But that's what he said. "You have no respect for authority, son. You're a screw-up, you always have been a screw-up, and you *will* be a screw-up unless we knock some sense into you before it's too late."

JOEY: (laughing a little) Maybe if we can find a telephone booth, we can go back in time and collect ancient historical figures, so you can get an A+ on your history project. That way he won't think you're a mess-up.

PACEY: (smiling slightly) Yeah, and then I can become a world-famous rock star in the band Wild Stallyns, right?

JOEY: (shrugging) Worked for Bill and Ted! (They are both silent. The momentary happiness has fleeted.) Look, Pacey...maybe if you talked to him...

PACEY: (shaking his head) I already tried. He doesn't even hear what I'm saying.

JOEY: (desperate) Maybe if *I* go talk to him. Or Dawson, even!

PACEY: It's no use, Jo. Dad wants me to go to military school, Doug's backing him Mom doesn't even care...there's no way out of it so I might as well accept it. (He stands up.) I'm sorry for waking you up, Joey. I just needed to vent on someone. I went to your house...but you weren't there. I almost went to Jen's...but I can't tell her this stuff, just like I can't tell Dawson.

JOEY: (giggling lightly and nudging him.) Aren't ready to show them the emotional side to Pacey, huh?

PACEY: (smiling) Yeah-this side of me stays just between us, all right?

JOEY: All right. (Pacey starts to walk away. Joey follows him.) Hey, Pace?

PACEY: (turning back) Yeah, Jo? (She hugs him.) What was that for?

JOEY: Because...even though it never seems like it, Pacey...I love having you as a're my best friend next to Dawson. I'll miss you if you have to go.

PACEY: Really?

JOEY: (slapping his arm.) Of course.

PACEY: Of all the times I wish I had a tape recorder with me... (Joey slaps him again.)

JOEY: Shut up, Pacey. If you tell *anyone*, what I just said, nothing is sacred. Everything and anything you've ever told me will be out in the open. (Pacey smiles.)

PACEY: Don't worry-your little secret is safe with your second-best bud. (Joey turns to walk away.)

JOEY: *Shut up*, Pacey! (He laughs and walks away.)


Joey climbs back in Dawson's window, the metal ladder clanging against the window frame. Dawson stirs. She steps lightly onto the floor, taking off her jacket. Joey slips back underneath the covers, and gets close to Dawson once more. He pulls her closer in his sleep, but she doesn't mind.


The school is bright and bustling. Students voices blur into one another's, making the level of noise outrageous. Joey and Dawson walk into school, hand in hand. They are heading to his locker when Joey spots Pacey walking down the hall. She anxiously waves to him.

JOEY: Pacey! (He sees her, and makes his way over to Dawson's locker.)

PACEY: Hey, Joey. Hey, Dawson. What's new?

DAWSON: Not much. You?

PACEY: Same as always.

JOEY: (peering at him.) So...? (Dawson looks at her strangely.) Have you talked to your dad?

PACEY: Well...not exactly. He was in a rotten mood yesterday...and...

DAWSON: (confused) Talk to him about what? (He looks from Joey to Pacey questioningly)

PACEY: (amazed) You didn't tell him?

JOEY: No-I told you I wouldn't breathe a word of it, remember? (Dawson looks alarmed that Joey has a secret with Pacey.)

PACEY: Well you could have told him the major thing!

JOEY: I didn't know what you wanted him to know, so I just kept my mouth shut!

DAWSON: Excuse me? What are we talking about?

PACEY: My Dad wants to send me off to military school. In California.

DAWSON: (surprised) *What*? When did this happen?

PACEY: Saturday night was when the all mighty chief informed me of my impending journey to hell. (Jen walks up.)

JEN: Who's going to hell? (Pacey gestures to Joey.)

PACEY: Joey, inform the little lady of my predicament. I'm going to be late for class. (He hurries off, not eager to talk anymore. Joey looks trapped, as Dawson and Jen corner her for more information.)


Joey is sitting at Dawson's desk, doing schoolwork. Dawson is laying on his bed, looking exasperated. He runs his hands through his hair and sits up with a deep sigh.

DAWSON: I can't believe this.

JOEY: It's not the end of the world, Dawson. Besides, I doubt his dad will really make him go.

DAWSON: But what if he does? (Joey turns to look at him.)

JOEY: Then we'll go to Mr. Witter, and beg and plead, okay? (Dawson sighs again and falls back down onto the bed.)

DAWSON: Why does everything have to change, Jo? Why couldn't it just stay the three of us, best friends, forever?

JOEY: (walking over to him and sitting on the bed) Even if Pacey leaves, he's still going to be our best friend.

DAWSON: (sitting up) Joey, you know what I mean. It's going to be different. (Joey touches his face and looks at him sadly.)

JOEY: Dawson, things change. You couldn't have honestly thought things would stay the same forever.

DAWSON: Well, I knew they would change eventually...I just thought I had more time, to deal with it. I thought I had until college, at least.

JOEY: (laughing) You can't plan everything, Dawson. Besides... (She moves closer to him.) don't you think some things have changed for the better? (Dawson smiles.)

DAWSON: (pretending to be clueless) Like what?

JOEY: Like this. (They kiss, lightly at first, and then it gets more involved. Slowly, Dawson leans back onto his bed, and Joey lays down next to him. They kiss for a little while longer, then Dawson pulls her closer to his body.)

DAWSON: (between kisses) So, I guess Pacey's misfortune is like foreplay, huh... (Joey smiles and they continue to kiss.)

JOEY: You're just too cute to resist when you're upset. (Dawson laughs a little and their lips meet again. Dawson unbuttons Joey's shirt and for awhile she seems to like the idea. Dawson's hands run all over her body as things start to get more heated. Suddenly she pulls away and starts to fix her clothes hurriedly.)

DAWSON: Sorry, Joey. I-

JOEY: (laughing nervously) Not your fault, Dawson. I didn't stop you. (Dawson sits up, looking sad.)

DAWSON: No, I'm really sorry. You-

JOEY: Dawson, it's okay. Really. (Dawson still looks worried. She leans over and kisses him.) Really. (He relaxes.) I just better go home, okay? Hormones are raging tonight.

DAWSON: Jo, come on. Don't go. I won't do anything.

JOEY: I was talking about my hormones. (Dawson smiles.)

DAWSON: Stay, Joey. (she heads for the window.) I rented all these war movies, to get in the mood for Saving Private Ryan. (Joey eyes him.)

JOEY: What movies?

DAWSON: Platoon, All Quiet on the Western Front, Born on the 4th of July and Apocalypse Now (Joey look as if she's still deciding.) Come *on*, Joey. What could be less romantic than war?

JOEY: (unsure) I don't know...

DAWSON: (pulling her down to the floor) You mean to tell me that if people are being blown up on screen you're going to want to make out? Blood and gore won't help you resist the urge to kiss me?

JOEY: (rolling her eyes.) Don't get too full of yourself, Dawson. You're not *that* great. (Dawson hits her with a pillow.)


The restaurant is empty, a couple of customers just leaving. Joey is working behind the counter. She is cleaning up a couple of plates as Pacey walks in. She doesn't see him as she heads to the kitchen to put the dishes in the dishwasher. After a moment she comes back out and Pacey is sitting at the counter, looking sullen. She goes to him.

JOEY: Hey, everything okay?

PACEY: As good as it can be. (he nervously twirls around a salt shaker on the counter.)

JOEY: Did you talk to your dad?

PACEY: (sighing) I tried. He just said, "Shut up, son. You're going whether you like it or not," and went into his study, shutting the door in my face. After which Doug, of course, felt it necessary to laugh at me and call me an idiot. (Joey is upset by this.)

JOEY: Why do they think they can treat you like this? (Pacey shrugs)

PACEY: I don't know, they always have.

JOEY: But-

PACEY: Joey, it's okay. I'm used to it. It's part of who I am. I most families, the youngest is doted on. In my's just the reverse. I've lived with it so far, I can keep it up.

JOEY: But if you can't convince your dad to change his mind, you won't have to. You'll have to put up with military school.

PACEY: (standing up) I'm beginning to think military school is better than being here.

JOEY: (coming around the counter and stopping him as he tries to leave.) How can you think that? Pacey, we need you here. (Pacey looks at her oddly.)

PACEY: Jo, I wish you'd stop being nice to me. It's not you. I know you're secretly thinking of insults to throw at me and holding them in your mind.

JOEY: (sadly) Pacey, that's not true. (Pacey just looks at her.)

PACEY: Well, I'd really like you to start being mean again. It'll make it a hell of a lot easier to leave this place. (He turns and walks out. Joey looks downfallen. Bessie comes out of the kitchen and sees her sister standing there, looking as if she's about to cry.)

BESSIE: Joey? What's wrong? (Joey faces Bessie.)

JOEY: It's Pacey. His dad's sending him away to some military school and he can't stop him.

BESSIE: (shocked) What? When did all this happen? (Bessie sets down the stack of menus she's holding and hurries to Joey.)

JOEY: Two days ago. Pacey has tried to talk him out of it but his dad won't even listen. (Joey rubs her forehead.) God, Bessie! Why does his family treat him like crap? What did he do to deserve this?

BESSIE: He was born.

JOEY: What?

BESSIE: Jo, don't tell Pacey, but his parents did not...*plan* on having another child. He was a *mistake*.

JOEY: (angry) So? Alex wasn't planned either and you still love him! You love him more than anything!

BESSIE: With me and's different. We don't have four other children to take care of.

JOEY: It's not fair. And now he's just going to be sent away. Just like that.

BESSIE: (thinking) It's hard, I know. (Joey is near tears, and Bessie is pretty surprised.) Jo, you're really upset about this, aren't you? (Joey just wraps her arms around her older sister.) What's going on, Joey?

JOEY: Dawson's right, Bessie. Everything is going to change now. I've spent my whole life bashing Pacey and now he's leaving. Why does everything have to be this way? He's always been there for me and I took him for granted. (Bessie just holds Joey, running her fingers through her hair. She doesn't know what to say to comfort her.)



Pacey is laying on his bed, the door is shut and locked. Woodburning by Toad the Wet Sprocket is blasting on his stereo. He closes his eyes, trying to forget his life. Suddenly someone starts to pound on his door, and he is jarred out of his dreamworld. He sits up, angry.

DOUG: (OS) Pacey! Turn that crap down!

PACEY: (angrily) I'll have it on as loud as I want to! (He turns it up another notch in defiance.)

DOUG: (OS) I mean it, loser! Turn it down or turn it off!

PACEY: And how are you going to make, me, Douggie? (Doug pounds on the door again.)

DOUG: (OS) It's no wonder Dad wants you out of this house! You're a waste of everyone's time! (Pacey turns it up some more.)

PACEY: Go away!

DOUG: (OS) Open this door!


DOUG: (OS) Open it, Pacey!

PACEY: Die, Doug. (Doug pounds on it harder.)

DOUG: (OS) Fine, Pacey. I'll just pick the lock and come in and beat the crap out of you. (Pacey rolls his eyes, and turns the music up some more, then goes to his window.)

PACEY: Fine, Doug, you do that! (Pacey climbs out the window, shutting it behind him. The music is still blaring and Doug is pounding on his door as Pacey walks down the path away from his house.)


Joey and Dawson are sitting on his bed, talking. They are both sad. Dawson is looking at a picture that was taken of Pacey, Joey and himself when they were about seven years old. Joey hugs her legs to her body.

DAWSON: It's all going to be weird now. Without Pace around.

JOEY: I remember when your mom took that picture. It was the day after we played in that community baseball game. And Pacey had tried to be super cool and he slid into home plate...

DAWSON: And he got those nasty brush burns all over his legs?

JOEY: Yeah...I learned something that day.

DAWSON: (curious) What?

JOEY: (laughs a little) Don't wear shorts when you're going to dive into the dirt, running as fast as you can. (Dawson smiles.)

DAWSON: (picking lint of one of his pillows) Yeah...a valuable lesson in life, right? (Joey tries to smile, but can't do it.)

JOEY: I'm really going to miss him.

DAWSON: I take it there's no chance his dad is going to change his mind? (Joey just shrugs, then shakes her head no.)


Pacey is sitting alone on the sand, looking out onto the water. Joey can be seen in the background, slowly approaching. She steps on a twig, which snaps loudly. Pacey spins around, surprised. He sees it's only Joey and relaxes.

JOEY: Sorry...I didn't mean to scare you.

PACEY: It's okay. What are you doing here?

JOEY: (shrugging) I was over at Dawson's...I didn't feel like going straight home. (She pauses) Why are you out here?

PACEY: Didn't feel like going home either. Doug was on my case again.

JOEY: (looking at him slyly as she sits down next to him on the sand.) Want me to kill him for you?

PACEY: As nice as that offer is, if anyone is going to kill him, I'll do it myself. Killing cops brings serious consequences.

JOEY: Still no change in the status of the situation? (Pacey shakes his head.)

PACEY: Look on the bright side. Maybe ten years from now we'll meet up some place and you can call me Captain Witter, or something like that. (Pacey looks at her sadly.) I guess I just have to accept this. Maybe I can convince myself it's for the best. Maybe if I go away for awhile one of those jerks back home might actually start to miss me.

JOEY: Pacey...

PACEY: (looking at his hands) Or maybe not. (Joey doesn't know what to say. So she wraps her arms around him. Tears start to run down his face.) It's funny. We were both talking about how badly we wanted to get out of here, and now I have the chance and I don't want to go. (Joey pulls away. Pacey quickly wipes his face, but Joey doesn't wipe hers.)

JOEY: I'm going to go talk to your dad. (She gets up. Pacey looks alarmed.)

PACEY: What?

JOEY: Come on, let's go.

PACEY: *No*, Jo, don't do that.

JOEY: Why not? Someone needs to tell him what an ass he is and I'm not afraid to do it.

PACEY: (standing up) Joey, I mean it. If you go and try to stand up for me, it's going to be the final nail in the coffin. Do you know how bad it would make me look if a girl-He's a sexist pig and that last thing I need is for you to get involved in this mess. It's just make matters worse. (Joey falls silent.)

JOEY: Well what if Dawson-

PACEY: Joey! No. This is my battle. I have to fight it on my own. Even if that means I lose it. (Joey just stands there, silent. Pacey brushes his feet through the sand. Joey walks to him and extends her hand.)

JOEY: Come on. I'll walk you home. (Pacey takes her hand reluctantly and they start walking. Pacey lets out a deep breath. Joey sighs and looks up at the night sky. Pacey watches her out of the corner of his eye, and glances down at their hands, which are interlocked. He steals another look at her.)

PACEY: I'm going to miss you when I leave, Joey.

JOEY: (sadly) I'm going to miss you too. (She smiles.) Even if you are a conceited ape.

PACEY: (smiling) Ice queen. (They both laugh lightly.) So, Joey, we've been talking about me all night. Let me ask you something.

JOEY: What?

PACEY: You and Dawson do it yet? (Joey laughs.)

JOEY: I really am going to miss you, Pace. (they continue walking towards Pacey's house.)


Joey and Pacey walk up the steps to his front door. The motion detector light comes on and little bugs start flying towards it, attracted to the light. Joey looks up at Pacey, not really wanting to leave him to face his family.

JOEY: Are you sure you don't want me to talk to him?

PACEY: Yeah, I'm sure. But thanks, Joey. For everything.

JOEY: I wish I could do more. (Pacey pulls her into his arms.)

PACEY: You've been a great friend.

JOEY: You've always been a great friend to me. (They just stand there, embracing. The front door opens, and Doug just looks at them for a minute. As Pacey pulls away, he sees his brother.)

DOUG: (disgusted) You about down out here, dimwit? (Joey turns to him, clenching her fists.)

PACEY: What do you want, Doug?

DOUG: How about you tell me where you've been all day? Nice to just bolt and leave us all wondering where you were.

PACEY: As if you even care.

DOUG: After all the money Dad's already invested in your military education? Of course we care. Tuition's already paid up, Pacey. You're not going anywhere except California from now on, believe me. You're such an idiot. (Joey advances towards him.)

JOEY: You stupid ass-(Pacey grabs her and holds her back.)

PACEY: Joey... (He looks at her warningly, and she shoots Doug a look that could kill.)

DOUG: Get your butt inside, Pacey. Dad wants to talk to you. (He pulls Pacey inside and shuts the door, leaving Joey on the porch alone.)


OL: One More Night"by Ani DiFranco. Dawson is laying on his bed, watching the Late Show with David Letterman. His bedroom door slowly opens, and he looks over, expecting to see his mom or dad. Instead, it's Joey. He's surprised. He gestures towards the window.

DAWSON: Why not the window? (Joey shrugs.)

JOEY: Too tired.

DAWSON: I thought you were going to spend the night at home.

JOEY: (repeating herself) Too tired. I've been walking around with Pacey since I left before. I'm not in the mood to deal with Bessie tonight.

DAWSON: (concerned) How is Pacey?

JOEY: (climbing into bed next to Dawson and snuggling into his arms.) Still has a ticket to California.

DAWSON: Damn it. I wish there was something we could do. (He looks down at Joey, and sees she is crying.) Joey?

JOEY: Dawson, ever since my mom died and my dad was convicted for the two have been my family...and now I'm losing him too. (The tears start to run harder.) I can't take it anymore...

DAWSON: (pulling her closer) Oh, Joey... (She sits up.)

JOEY: (wiping her face) I'm sorry. I just-

DAWSON: (sitting up, he speaks quickly) No, Joey, there's nothing to be sorry about. (He takes her in his arms.) I know how much this has to hurt. (Joey cries into his shoulder, and his eyes fill with compassion and love. Slowly she pulls away.)

JOEY: Let's just go to sleep...I...I can't deal with this right now. (Dawson looks her in the eyes, and knows they should wait until morning to talk about it. He takes her in his arms again.)

DAWSON: Okay... (They embrace for a minute, then Joey pulls away again. Their eyes meet and Joey's tears slowly cease. Dawson lightly brushes the tears from her cheeks, looking at her intensely. She leans forward and kisses him lightly.)

JOEY: Dawson...I really need you. Promise me you'll be here for me? Always? (Dawson kisses her back.)

DAWSON: I'll always be here for you, Joey. No matter what happens. (Their lips meet again, this time with more passion. Dawson runs his hands through her hair. They separate for a second, then start to kiss again.)

JOEY: I love you, Dawson.

DAWSON: I love you too. (He pulls her closer, and they fall back onto his pillows. He kisses her neck, and then their mouths come together. He pauses for a second, and looks deep into Joey's eyes. He sees something in them that he's never seen before. She remains quiet, nodding slightly.) Are you sure? (Joey just nods again. Dawson sits up and Joey looks surprised.)

DAWSON: This is a big step, Joey. Are you positive that tomorrow morning you won't regret any of this? (Joey just sits up and grabs Dawson.)

JOEY: Dawson, for once in your life don't analyze. (She kisses him passionately and pulls him down on top of her. They continue to kiss, as if there is no tomorrow. As things start to get more involved, the shot rises from the bed and pans across Dawson's room to the right, to the Always poster on Dawson's open closet door. The scene fades to black.)


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