Dear Dawson, Love Joey, 12/9/10
XOXO Part Four by: Vlada

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"I know we're just like old friends
We just can't pretend
That lovers make amends
We are reasons so unreal
We can't help but feel that something has been lost

Angel, you know it's not the end
We'll always be good friends
The letters have been sent on."

~ "Perfect" By Smashing Pumpkins ~

December 9, 2010

Dear Dawson,

God, where to begin? The reason I haven't written in so long is because I've been a busy little critter. Sorry, that was silly of me, but I'm feeling kinda giddy. Jen's been making fun of me, calling busy body and tip topty because I've been doing a million things at once and refuse to stop.

Pacey says I'm doing it to stay busy so that I won't have to think about Adam and this whole big confusing thing. He's right. I'd just rather stick it in the recycle bin of my computer and never look at it again. It'd be a whole lot more confusing if they knew I was writing to you, but they don't. I can only imagine their reactions if they found out. Pacey would probably say I've been an idiot, writing to you and having you there but never taking advantage of it. I just go on living as if I've lost you forever, but really you're right there. I'm just too…everything to take advantage of it.

I've been moving my stuff into Jen's apartment and forwarding my new address to everyone so that's why I haven't written. I left Adam. Not so subtle, but I thought I should just cut to the chase. You were right and I knew it before you said it. I got your letter and it was like this light. This light bulb that I thought had gone out, but then I realized I just forgot to plug in the cord. I confronted him about us being strangers practically. He almost fainted when I told him you, Dawson Leery thee director, were the love of my life. Still are. Let's just leave it at that.

So now I'm bunking with Jen. My new roommate has also worn out my poor toes. Jen and Pacey have been taking me to dance clubs every night for the past week. We've kept the dancing habit going. I'm thankful for those days in high school when we'd head to Providence and dance the night away. I hated them at first, but dancing has proven to be a great escape from my problems and the world. You just spin and spin and everything around you fades, becomes this unsepretable line in a twirling circle. One person's problems can't be distinguished from another's in the cycle. The lights dim and unsettling faces can't be seen. Painful cries and deep thoughts at the core can't be heard. Life gives you a moment not to face the fears, problems, and insecurities of yourself and other people. It's a blank page where you can start over. Clear white. Everything's gone. Blackness. That is until you bump into someone, but I'm actually good at dancing. Seeing as how I'm single now, even though Adam would never come with us even when I wasn't single, Pacey's my manicky dance partner. Then afterwards we head to Motel 6 and go at like rabbits. Stop, I can see you turning bright red. Don't think I didn't know what you were thinking when I wrote Pacey and me were dance partners.

It's just dancing and nothing more. Well, maybe not nothing more. Pacey and Jen have been my savors these last few years. Without them I would have never made it to writing this letter. I just know without them somewhere in my struggle with love and Adam I would have lost a finger. Or two. Smile, Dawson, I'm kidding. I can see your firm face in my head.

I don't know if you've kept in touch with everyone or not. Jen says she speaks to occasionally and Pacey said there's a call every week or so. I thought I'd fill you in. Jen is an indie film director and Pacey is doing movies. What can I say, film runs in the blood of friends I guess. Pacey's been pretty wise about his career choices though. I'm really proud of the work he's done. Can you believe "For…ever" of it actually made me cry? Me! Now, you I can imagine, and don't try to deny it because Pacey told me you told him you cried when you saw it, but the too tough girl from the wrong side of the creek? I've changed. I wouldn't turn down your romanticism this time around. Jen said she hasn't seen this much evolvement since this flower outside her New York City apartment bloomed through winter and lived through next winter despite the snow and people.

Jen's going to Sundance this year and I'm going to go with her and follow her around for a 24 hours in the day piece. You have to check out her movie, "Sapience." It's amazing. Everyone should buy it on video just so theycould say they have sapience. I spoke to Jack last week. He moved to New York from Boston on a job offer at the Metropolitan Museum of Art. He was gushing for an entire hour over the phone about this guy he met during work.

Andie's living in Connecticut with her husband and working as a high school counselor. They've been married for almost a year now and have a girl on the way. The wedding was beautiful. I'm sorry you missed it. I'm sure Pacey told you all about it. He's really matured; not a word when Andie got married. So there's your five-year recap.

Now, time to get serious. I've been thinking a lot lately about you and me. I know what we had was real, but was it meant to be forever? Are we passing, fleeting, momentary, temporary, or occasional? Is there a life beyond "us?" I'm starting to doubt it and Adam and me are living proof of that. Every relationship either one of us has had is proof their might not be an "it" behind "us." They've all failed. The question is, now what? Do we try to find another "it" out there? Do we reinvent the "us?" I miss you, I can't deny that, but sometimes it just feels like life is trying to send me a fax.

Trying to tell me just because we're soul mates doesn't mean we'll be together or happy. There are just too many factors, too much history, too much hurt, and too many walls standing in the way. Sometimes I think that voice, life's fax, is right. Think of everything that's happened to us.

It's caused these enormous holes in our relationship and even greater pain. I still ache and hurt too much to get involved with you again. That day, the day we fell apart, you crumbled my heart, and we parted I swore to myself I'd never let you do it to me again. But I crumble once again; my life just seems empty without you in it someway. I don't think that someway could be romantic, however, just yet. I forgive you for what happened, but I'll never forget. The pain, the image, the words, and the memory will always be there in my head and my heart. The scene, every line of word and people, still plays out like a moving picture in my head. Maybe someday life will send me a fax saying it's safe now, but until then know I'll always love you.


"Dawson, there is a catastrophic disaster downstairs and you're reading?" Scott asked alarmed.

"It's Joey's letter," Dawson replied quietly from his desk chair. "She finally wrote back."

"I don't mean to be rude, but isn't that what got you into this mess in the first place?" Scott asked impatiently. "Yet, you're still continuing your game of international post office flirtation."

"Hey," Dawson said getting up angrily. "That was uncalled for."

"I'm just quoting the London Dish," Scott said holding up the paper defensively. "And that was one of the nicer things they wrote."

Dawson took the paper from Scott's hands. He walked to window for more light. The room was dark and shady so to give the impression no one was inside. Of course everyone knew that wasn't true. There was a group of tabloid reporters on the sidewalk by the hotel down below. Some held cameras or notepads with their heads held upward looking towards his room for signs of life. Dawson noticed a smaller group of distinguished entertainment reporters holding microphones. I've even attracted the news, Dawson thought, this is bad. They were like a carnivorous animal scouting out their target's every move. Planning their attack at just the right moment. Getting ready to eat him alive before he'd even notice he was being watched. Their cameras, a snap, like teeth slamming down on flesh. Hunger for a story. For something to chew on.He looked down at the paper in his hands. On the front page was a headline far worse than the one he imagined the day that reporter had asked about Joey.

It read, "Dawson Leery. Joey Potter. Love Letters. Unrequited Love."

Below it was a picture of Dawson coming out of the post office and a copy of his letter with a close up of his sentences in the letters to Joey. He skimmed the article, looking at the various quotes from their letters.

"The reunion has the world has been waiting for." "Every time a reporter asks me who I'm dating and I want to say, 'Joey Potter.'" "I've never had a realrelationship since then." "God Jo, I can't believe you're getting married." "We couldn't go five minutes without getting into an argument those last few months." He flipped through the paper to the continuation of the article.

There were more quotes from both his and Joey's letters and copies of most of the letters. The article continued to the next page where there were pictures of Dawson and Joey together in high school kissing and hugging. And one in particular that grabbed his attention.

What happened to those two people, he thought, they look like strangers. So happy. He couldn't even remember the last time he'd been that happy. The picture was taken one day during senior year. In the picture they hadn't started dating officially yet, but they were growing closer. Joey would sleep over more often and they'd have tickle fights like when they were fifteen until an awkward pause would pass. They continually claimed to be just friends, but the gang called it foreplay. They'd cuddle, hug, hold hands, plant kisses on each other's forehead or cheek, Joey would sit in his lap, but they never kissed on the lips. It was a game. How long can you wait till the hormones overtake you? That day happened one night during the middle of senior year. Joey had slept over and the two were sleeping peacefully with Dawson's arm wrapped around her, a not uncommon thing for the two even though they we're "just" friends. Then he shifted closer to her and kissed her on the lips slowly and sweetly. That was it.

He remembered the day in the picture so distinctly. They were eating lunch, the whole gang, in the park by the swings. He remembered thinking that being a senior and having the privilege of going off campus for lunch was a blessing. Just then Joey sat down in his lap. She looked at his lunch and started complaining how he had the best lunches and they were never put to use. Then she took one of his grapes and threw it at him and he in return started tickling her until the two were tangled in each other like a pretzel.

Jen quickly got her one time use camera and snapped a picture of them starring at each other as a pause over took them, unbeknownst to the couple.

Later that day she blew up the picture and wrote on it "Kiss already. We aren't getting any younger." The next day Dawson and Joey walked into school and were greeted by the poster hanging over the doorway. A crowd of students stood under at it cheering them on as they walked through the door and into the hallway. He remembered feeling awkward and embarrassed even more so than with the Eve incident. This was personal and about real feelings and emotions, someone he cared about and loved. That night was it.

"Shit," he said slamming the paper down on the table.

"I'd expect more, but shit is fine," Scott said putting away his cell phone.

"I've arranged for a helicopter to pick you up on the roof in thirty minutes."

"What about filming?" Dawson asked distraught.

"Canceled," Scott replied bluntly. "I called everyone and they understood with the recent circumstances. Frankly Dawson, it doesn't look like this movie is going to be made at all. I think you should go with your original pick and bring "Pastel" to life. It was much more honest and real. Just simple. Simply beautiful."

"I can't," Dawson replied starring out the window at the crowd absent-mindedly. "It's too personal."

"I figured it was about Joey," Scott replied annoyed, "but that's what makes it so good. It's exactly what the titles says, Dawson. Oscar winner guaranteed."

"No," Dawson said holding his ground. "I refuse to put Joey out there in the public eye for those vicious reporters to hurt her."

"You should have thought of that earlier," Scott said sympathetically.

"I think it may be too late."

"No," Dawson whispered sitting down at his desk with a clean sheet of paper and pen. "No, it's never too late. I have to warn her. Tell her."

"I suppose there's time," Scott said thinking. "I don't think it's reached the states, yet. Tell her to hide out somewhere before anyone gets word of it. Then release a statement. Gives them something to obsess over until something else comes along. It should die out in, oh, about…months."

"Months?" Dawson exclaimed scribbling down a statement of his own. "Who would possibly care about my love life, or lack there of, so much?"

"The world, Dawson," Scott said taking the finished statement from him. Dawson took out another sheet of paper and began writing to Joey. "You still haven't gotten it, have you? You're their calm chowder now. And if you don't want to be cooked, I suggest you get out of here, quick, to somewhere far, far away. Write her to do the same."

"God, I never wanted to get her involved in this. I never meant to…any of this. Never."

"Comes with the persona, the fame, and the credibility," Scott replied standing over him. "Don't write down the exact location where you're going." "I hope she'll be okay…someone there to be with her. I love her," Dawson said the last sentences almost inaudibly, but it didn't go unheard by Scott.

"Stick that in the letter too."

Just in case you forgot, but since you guys are all so great you didn't (right?!), FEEDBACK!

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