At the Crossroads by: Tessa

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Title: Sisterly Love Part 4: At The Crossroads

Rating: PG-13 (language)


At the Crossraods

“Pacey? Pacey? Hey! Earth to Pacey!” Andie yelled.

“Huh? What? Oh, hey, Andie. Hi, Dawson.” Pacey said, looking up. “Didn’t see you guys there, I was thinking about something else.”

“Gee, and we’ve only been sitting here next to you for half an hour.” Dawson observed.

“Speaking of which, I thought Joey said the bus would be here at 2:00, and it’s already 2:25.” Pacey said, changing the subject.

“Well, it is a four hour ride. And they could’ve run into Sunday afternoon traffic.” Jack pointed out. No one paid any attention to him. After a minute, he spoke up again “What, am I invisible or something?”

“You know, Jack, you didn’t have to come along.” Dawson said coldly.

“Yeah he did.” Andie sighed “He drove us here.”

“I don’t see why they had to stay so long, anyway.” Pacey muttered.

“Well, it is kind of important for Tatum to actually meet her father, even if he is in jail.” Andie told him “I mean, that’s why she came to Massachusetts in the first place, and she has been here for almost two months. Speaking of Tatum, haven’t you asked her out yet?”

“No, ok?” Pacey replied “I’ll ask her soon, maybe tonight.”

“Pathetic.” Andie whispered to herself. “Hey!” she said out loud “There’s the bus now.”

“Hi!” Tatum called as she and Joey jumped off the bus. She greeted her friends as she walked past them “Hello, Dawson, Andie, Jack, Pacey-” as she greeted Pacey, she turned around, tripped over a rock, and fell flat on her face.

“Whoa!” Andie said as she and Jack went to help Tatum up “Tatum spill, aisle 8.”

“Yeah,” Jack added “can we get a mop and a price check on a pair of leopard print panties?” he winked at Tatum as he pulled her to her feet “I saw ‘em.”

Tatum gave him a look as she walked past them “I was th-thinking about something and I just didn’t see that.” she stammered.

“Oh yeah? What were you ‘th-thinking’ about?” Andie asked.

“Nothing. I’m just tired. I fell asleep on the ride home.” Tatum explained.

“Ok.” Andie said with a shrug “Time to change the subject. How’d it go with your dad?”

“Well, kind of awkward at first.” Tatum replied as they made their way to the car behind the others “But he was really happy to meet me, and it was cool to find out that my mom was pretty much the same at 18 as she was at 34.”

“What was she?” Andie asked

“A tightly-wound pain in the ass.” Tatum said

* * * *

“Hi, we’re home, can’t talk, I’ve got a date and he’s gonna be here at 6, gotta get ready!” Tatum called as she ran into the house and up the stairs.

“Countdown, only 3 and a half hours to go.” Joey muttered.

“Wait a minute,” Bessie said “Tatum , get down here. What’s this about a date?”

“We’re going to a party.” Tatum explained as she came back down the stairs.

“On a school night? Did you do your homework?” Bessie asked.

“Yes! And you have to let me go to this party! Remember you said you wanted me to meet new people and have more of a social life?” Tatum whined.

“I could kick myself for telling you that.” Bessie muttered.

“Come on Bess, she’s right.” Joey cut in “Everyone is going to be at this party. Tatum, if you want Dawson and I could give you a ride.”

“What?” Tatum shrieked “You guys are going? Bessie, you can’t let her go, she’ll embarrass me! You should ground her because...because her room’s a mess!”

“If I go down for that one, I’m taking you with me.” Joey told her “Who are you going with, anyway?”

“Steve Morris.” Tatum replied

“Steve Morris?” Joey repeated “As in captain of the wrestling team Steve Morris?”

“Yes! A senior, can you believe it?” Tatum giggled “I was outside the library, and he just popped up and asked me to go to the party with him! I was caught completely off guard!”

“Get used to it.” Joey said “Bessie, I take it back, you can’t let her go to that party with that guy, he’s a sleaze! He’s a total leach!”

“I’ve heard that, too.” Bessie agreed “I’m sorry, Tatum, but I promised Dad I was going to take care of you two, and I don’t think letting you go out with a guy like Steve is taking care of you.”

“No!” Tatum wailed “You can’t do this to me! You’re ruining my life!” she ran upstairs to her room and slammed the door

* * * *

“Hi!” Joey said to Dawson and Pacey as she climbed into the car.

“Where’s Tatum?” Pacey asked.

“Grounded.” Joey explained “When Bessie found out Tate wanted to go to this party with Steve Morris, she told her she couldn’t go.”

“Tatum has a date with Steve?”

“Had a date with Steve, yeah.” Joey replied.

“Aw, there goes my chance.” Pacey muttered.

“Don’t sweat it.” Joey told him “I don’t think Tatum will actually be going out with him anytime soon.”

* * * *

“Tatum?” Bessie called as she knocked on Tatum’s bedroom door “Listen, I’m taking Alex out for a walk, I’ll be back in about an hour.” no answer “Tatum, come on, don’t be that way. I know you’re mad at me, but I’m doing this for your own good.” still no answer “Oh, alright. Stay mad at me.” she turned around and went back down the stairs.

If Bessie had opened the door, she would have seen that the room was dark, the window was open, and Tatum was not there.

* * * *

“Pacey, Tatum’s here.” Andie said.

“Really?” Pacey asked “I thought she was grounded.”

“Guess not.” Andie said “This is a good opportunity, go talk to her.”

Pacey shook his head “Are you nuts? See that big guy she’s talking to? That’s Steve Morris, the captain of the wrestling team. If I so much as say ‘hi’ to Tatum he’ll break my neck.”

“Well, he just walked away, she’s alone, go!” Andie encouraged him.


“No buts!” Andie interrupted “I’m saying this as your friend, do yourself a favor and go talk to her.”

“Ok, fine.” Pacey said as he made his way towards Tatum “Hey, Tate.”

Tatum turned around “Pacey! Omigod, what are you doing here? Is Joey here? Does she know I’m here?”

“Whoa, relax.” Pacey told her “I take it you snuck out of the house?”

“Yes, and please don’t tell Joey!” Tatum begged “She’ll tell Bessie and I’ll get into so much trouble!”

“Calm down, I won’t tell.” Pacey said “But I may want a favor in return.”

“You better be kidding.” Tatum told him.

“Of course I am.” Pacey told her “You’re cold.”

Tatum narrowed her eyes “You can take it.”

Pacey shook his head “No, I mean you look cold.” he took off his jacket and handed it to her “Here, take it.”

Tatum was taken aback by the kind gesture “Sure, thanks. Are you sure you won’t be too cold without it?”

“I’ll be fine.”

“Ok, thanks.” Tatum said “Listen, you better scram. If Steve sees you talking to me he’ll draw blood.”

No sooner had Pacey walked away than Steve came back. He was clearly drunk and smelled like weed “Hey, babe, we gotta motorvate.”

“Sure, ok.” Tatum said. As she was walking towards the door, the small gold cross necklace she was wearing slipped off. Picking it up, Tatum stuffed it into the pocket of Pacey’s jacket.

“Tate! Wait up!” Andie called. She pulled Tatum aside and whispered into her ear “Are you sure you should be getting into a car with him? He’s pretty hammered. You could get a ride home with me and Jack.”

“And risk having Joey find out I snuck out of the house?” Tatum asked “Don’t worry about it, I’ll just swipe his keys.”

“Ok, I’ll see you in school tomorrow.” Andie said as she went back to the party.

“You weren’t wearing that jacket when we came in.” Steve observed as they headed for his car.

“Yeah, I borrowed it from a, uh, friend.” Tatum explained “Listen, why don’t I drive. You seem a little tipsy.”

“Hey, no one drives my car but me!” Steve slurred “I’m fine to drive. Sheesh. Chicks.”

Tatum hesitated for a moment before getting into he car.

* * * *

“Hey,” Andie said as she climbed into the back seat of Dawson’s car “thanks for the ride, you guys.”

“No problem.” Joey said “We were about ready to head home anyway.”

* * * *

“Steve, slow down just a little.” Tatum pleaded “And where are we going? This isn’t the way to my house.”

“You’re right, baby.” Steve said drunkenly “It’s the way to my house.”

“What? No way. No fucking way. I want you to take me home right now.”

“Fine.” Steve replied “My home.”

Just then, Steve stopped the car at a red light. Seeing a chance to escape, Tatum unbuckled her seat belt and reached for the door.

“NO!” Steve shouted. He put out one hand to stop her and slammed his foot onto the gas pedal. As the car sped forward, Tatum tried to buckle her seat belt again, but she didn’t have time.

Pulling out into the intersection, Dawson didn’t notice Steve’s car until it was too late. The two cars hit with such force that all of the passengers were knocked out instantly. They never had time to react.

* * * *

Jen saw the accident as she pulled up to the intersection. Whoa. she said to herself Looks pretty bad. I better call for an ambulance. she stopped the car and got out. Looking around, she realized she was near Pacey’s house. I sure hope he’s home.

* * * *

“Pacey! Oh, good, you’re home!” Jen said breathlessly when he opened the door.

“Yeah, I just got here. Come on in, what’s up?” Pacey said.

“I just passed a really bad accident on the road. Can I use the phone?”

Pacey nodded “I’ll some flashlights and blankets. Maybe there’s something we can do to help.”

“Good idea.” Jen replied as she headed for the kitchen and picked up the phone.

A minute later, they headed out the door. “It’s right down the road this way.” Jen said.

“Wow.” Pacey said when he saw the two cars “That does look bad.” He approached one of the cars, turned on his flashlight and shined it into the passenger side window. He gasped and almost dropped the flashlight when he saw Tatum pinned against the dashboard, her face covered in blood. “Uh, uh, Jen?” Pacey stammered.

Jen smacked her flashlight against the palm of her hand “Come on, work, damn you! Yeah, what is it Pacey?”

“Uh, uh, uh.....”

“What?” Jen yelled “Oh, finally.” she sighed as the flashlight clicked on. She shined it into the window of the other car. Then she screamed and dropped it “Oh my God, Dawson!” she cried out.

* * * *

“Jack?” Bessie said as she opened the door “What are you doing here?”

“Hi.” Jack said “Listen, has Andie called, or have you seen her? She got a ride home with Dawson and Joey, but she hasn’t come home yet.”

“No, I haven’t seen them.” Bessie replied “But maybe they called. I’ll ask Tatum.”

“Is Tatum home already?” Jack asked.

“She never left.”

Jack shook his head “She was at that party.”

“Why that miserable little-” Bessie was interrupted by the phone ringing. “Maybe that’s them.” she picked up the phone “Hello? Yes, I’m their sister. What? Oh my God, when? Yes, of course, thank you.” she hung up the phone and picked up Alexander “Jack, they were in a car accident. All of them.” she said, her voice breaking “We have to get to Capeside Memorial right away.”

* * * *

“What is taking so long?” Jen whined as she flipped through an issue of Time Magazine from 1989. They had all been waiting nearly an hour, and no one had told them anything about their friends. Dawson’s parents had just arrived, only to find out that their son was still in surgery.

“I wish they’d hurry it up.” Pacey moaned. “I can’t take much more of this.”

Finally, a doctor came into the waiting room “Mr. And Mrs. Leery?”

Gail and Mitch stood up “How is he?” Gail asked, wiping her eyes

“He’s been moved to recovery, you can see him now. I’ll have a nurse take you up.”

Jack spoke up “What about my sister?”

“I’m sorry, son, she’s still in surgery.” the doctor replied.

Jack slumped back in his chair. Jen felt her heart break for Jack. First he had lost his older brother, now he could lose his sister, too.

“Ms. Potter,” the doctor continued “We’ve moved your sister Joey to intensive care. Your sister Tatum is still in surgery.”

“How are they?” Bessie sobbed.

“Joey is in poor condition, but she should be fine.” the doctor told her “But the odds of Tatum surviving the night are slim.”

“Oh my God...” Bessie gasped

“Doctor, what about Steve Morris?” Jen asked.

“The Morris boy was dead on arrival.” the doctor explained “His blood alcohol level was 0.20.”

“Well, pardon me if I don’t shed any tears for him.” Pacey said to no one in particular. “But my best friend could’ve have been killed tonight, and three of the people I care about most could die, and it’s his fault.”

* * * *

Pacey stared down at Andie. It was so strange to see someone as perky and full of life as Andie lying there so silent. The doctor had said that she could wake up at any time, but it just wasn’t very likely.

“Andie,” Pacey began “you cannot do this. I mean, what about your brother and your mom? They wouldn’t be able to handle it. And what about me, huh? Who’s going to disagree with every little thing I say, who’s going to laugh at every stupid joke that I tell? And what if Tatum makes it? Who’s she supposed to gang up on me with? And you guys both made the cheerleading squad. And who’s going to bully me into talking to Tatum? I’ll never ask her out without your help. Come on Andie, you don’t have a choice here, you’ve got to wake up.”

“How is she?” Jack asked as he walked into the room.

“The doctor said she had massive head trauma and internal bleeding. But, you know, she could be ok...” Pacey replied.

“Don’t bullshit me.” Jack told him “They said the same thing about Tim.”

Pacey felt like he should say something reassuring or comforting, but all that came to mind was “How are the others?”

Jack shrugged “Bessie’s a total wreck. They let her in to see Joey a few minutes ago, but no one’s been able to see Tatum yet. They said that-”

“Jack?” Pacey interrupted “Look.”

Jack looked down at his sister. Sure enough, Andie’s eyes were starting to open. “Jack?” she whispered hoarsely “What’s going on?”

Pacey stood up “I’m gonna go get a doctor.”

“We’ll wait here!” Andie called after him.

* * * *

“Pacey?” Jen said.

Pacey looked up from the magazine he was reading “Yeah?”

Jen handed him his jacket “Here, they found this in Steve’s car. It’s yours, right?”

“Yeah, I lent it to Tatum.” Pacey replied. He held the jacket up. It was ripped and covered in blood. Pacey sighed and began to fold it up. As he did, something fell out of one of the pockets.

“What’s this?” Jen asked, picking Tatum’s gold cross necklace up off the floor and handing it to Pacey. Pacey shrugged “I don’t know.” he stood up and approached Bessie “Is this Tatum’s?”

Bessie looked at the necklace, then nodded “It was her mother’s.” Pacey started to hand it to her, but she pushed his hand away “Why don’t you hold on to it? You can give it to Tatum....when she wakes up.”

“You sure?” Pacey asked

“I think she would want you to keep it for her.” Bessie replied, sobbing “She really likes you, Pacey.” she began to break down again “Why don’t you go in and see her now?” she said as she broke down completely.

Pacey nodded and turned toward the stairs, leaving Jack and Jen to comfort Bessie. He went up the stairs and into the intensive care unit. The first person he saw when he got there was Tatum. A nurse was standing over her, hooking a bag up to the IV tube sticking out of Tatum’s arm. The nurse looked up and smiled sadly at Pacey as he approached.

“You’re a friend of hers?” the nurse asked in an Irish accent. She didn’t wait for an answer before continuing “Such a shame. She’s such a beautiful wee thing. Reminds me of me own granddaughter. Are you her boyfriend, then?”

Pacey nodded, then shook his head “I could’ve been, but it looks like I’ve blown it.”

The nurse patted his shoulder as she passed by him on her way out “There, there, buck up now. You never know. I’ll leave you alone, then. You can talk to her, she might hear you.”

As soon as the nurse was gone, Pacey sat down beside Tatum’s bed. He tried to speak, but the words wouldn’t come. He just wanted to shake her and see her open her eyes. He gently picked up her hand and held it. He hesitated for only a moment before leaning down and whispering into her ear “I love you, Tatum.”

* * * *

Ok, people, dry your eyes (three of my friends who edit these for me reported that they bawled when they read this one.) Well, will Tatum make it? Will Pacey ever get the chance to ask her out? Find out in Part 5: “One More Chance”, coming soon!

Copyright 1999 by ChktaBnana Fanfic Productions

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