A/N: Yay, Part 2's here! Thank you for the feedback. :) I made it into 3 parts because Part 2 was super-long by the time I finished. I'll post Part 3 sometime before this week's GG. Oh shit... I just realized I'm not going to be home on Tuesday for Gilmore night! I'll have to tape it. Damn. Why couldn't my mom be honored on a Wed. night?
WARNING: This mini-series contains spoilers UP TO THE END OF SEASON 5. DO NOT READ IF YOU DO NOT WISH TO BE SPOILED. You've been warned.
**You may find Rory's actions to be slightly unjustified in here. I tried my hardest to make her intentions clear, but, well, I don't want to focus on Rory. (Yale!Rory and I don't get along very well.) Rory's presence and/or complications are here to further the Lorelai (and, inevitably, the LL) plot. I'm sorry if you feel ripped off.
Part 1 / Part 3
Lorelai walked around the mall, hoping that checking out some of the new summer fashion would take her mind off her worries. However, the first thing she saw when she entered was the rack of bikinis, and her mind suddenly raced. If she was actually pregnant, she wouldn’t be able to wear any bikinis this summer…
Okay, I need to get a grip… she thought to herself as she tore her eyes from the swimsuits and found the lingerie section, instead. Okay, that’s not helping… Lorelai sighed and covered her face with her hands. She would be fine; she just had to get a grip on herself. She could get through this. After all, she got through much harder things before - she raised Rory on her own! At least, if she was pregnant, she wouldn’t be alone this time. She would have Rory, Sookie, and the rest of Stars Hollow to help her out. And Luke? Well, she hoped she would have Luke, but they hadn’t really talked about having children before. She wasn’t sure where he stood on the issue. She wasn’t sure she wanted to know.
“Great,” she muttered, causing another shopper to glance nervously at her, “I’m craving another apple.”
Lorelai peered through the glass window facing the mall. She sighed when she saw the red CVS sign a few doors down. She took one last look around the department store, before walking determinedly into the mall. However, her resolve failed her once she found herself staring at the pregnancy tests, and tears began streaming down her face. Angrily, she swiped at her cheeks, looking around nervously to make sure no one was watching her. Finally, she took a deep breath, grabbed the most expensive test from the display, and threw it into the red shopping basket.
Once she got to the counter, she had piled her basket high with snacks, drinks, and toiletries. She dropped the basket onto the counter and forced a smile at the teenage store clerk. He returned her smile with a “Good evening, Miss,” and began scanning the items. Lorelai could’ve sworn he gave her an amused look while scanning the pregnancy test, so she scowled at him the rest of the time, and left without another smile. Then, she plopped down onto a bench and dropped the two CVS bags onto the remaining part of the bench (the last thing she needed was annoying bench company!), before fishing out the box of Apple Jacks (maybe they didn’t taste like apples, but it was the closest she could come up with at the moment) and a bottle of Diet Coke. Silently, she snacked, every so often subtly peering at the bags beside her to be sure that the pregnancy test was hidden.
She was well aware that, this time around, she had nothing to be ashamed of. She was an adult now - an adult in a very mature relationship. These things happen - she could deal with it. Yet, as she sat there, watching the shoppers as they passed, she couldn’t help but recall the shame and helplessness she felt the last time she had bought a pregnancy test. No matter how many times she told herself it was different this time, the word “screw-up” kept coming to mind. After chugging down the rest of her coke, she was dismayed to find that her bladder was full.
Well, she thought to herself, no time like the present.
First, Lorelai headed for the food court bathroom, but it was too big and crowded. Instead, she slowly made her way toward Macy’s, figuring a department store would be less crowded. Indeed, when she arrived, she was relieved to see that the bathroom was completely empty. Lorelai entered the handicap stall and hung her bags, in addition her purse, on a hook on the door, before fishing out the pregnancy test. It took her a minute to get the box open, due to her shaking hands, and then another few minutes to read and process the pregnancy test’s directions. Two pink lines for pregnant and one pink line for not. Huh, she could handle that. It had definitely been harder the last time she took this test.
“Okay,” she whispered, unzipping her jeans, “Here I go…”
Luke unlocked the front door and walked into Lorelai’s house. He listened for the sound of footsteps, and, after hearing nothing, called her name a few times. Still, he received no reply, so he trudged up the stairs and looked around her bedroom, in the bathroom, and even in Rory’s room. Still, he came up on empty. He sighed and grabbed the cordless phone, silently praising Lorelai for actually putting Rory’s dorm phone number onto speed dial.
He let out a frustrated sigh and sunk onto the couch when Rory’s voicemail picked up. He didn’t want to frighten Rory into thinking something was wrong with her mother, unless there actually was something wrong. He didn’t know where Lorelai had gone, but she was a grown woman and she hadn’t been missing long enough for Luke to have justifiable reason to call the police. However, he was out of options. He had called her cell phone five times, getting the voicemail each time; checked the Dragonfly, Al’s Pancake World, Doose’s, and about every other establishment in Stars Hollow. Her Jeep was still parked in front of her house, so he figured that, if she wasn’t in Stars Hollow, she must have taken a taxi somewhere.
But why? Why would she leave her best friend just as she was about to give birth? Why wouldn’t she have told him that she had left the hospital? At a loss of anything else to do, Luke went into her kitchen and began to fix the leaky sink, hoping that his fears were unfounded and Lorelai would find her way home soon.
Lorelai stared out the window of the bus as they crossed the Stars Hollow border. She let out a sigh as her forehead pressed against the cool glass, willing herself not to cry and ruin her freshly re-applied make-up. The last thing she needed to do was seem upset in Stars Hollow. The residents would, of course, immediately pounce on her, asking inane questions and assume she and Luke had broken up again.
She sighed at the thought of Luke. It was silly to be so upset about a negative pregnancy test. After all, she didn’t want to have a baby. Things were going really well in her life – both relationship and career-wise – but they were still fresh. The inn was just nearing its one-year anniversary, and her relationship with Luke was even further from that mark. Still, she remembered, with no small amount of pain, how there had been a moment, as she waited for the results of her pregnancy test, where she had let her guard down. For a split second, the image of herself, Rory, Luke, and a newborn baby flashed before her eyes and she had almost felt hopeful. She really wished she hadn’t let herself feel that way.
The bus slowed to a stop in the town square and Lorelai climbed out, clutching the drug store bags (minus the pregnancy test that she had quickly dumped into the trash before she began sobbing) to her body. She exhaled sharply as she caught sight of Luke’s. She knew she should go inside; let Luke know she was all right and apologize for disappearing on him. But just the thought of seeing him made the tears prick at the corner of her eyes again. It made the whole situation too real. After all, if she saw him, she would have to tell him what happened (she didn’t want to lie after the ‘Christopher Incident’ and she was fairly sure she wouldn’t be able to lie about this, even if she had tried) and she didn’t know how he would react. Just the thought of a possible pregnancy might scare him away.
Still, she needed Luke – yearned to feel his strong arms around her and his reassuring words whispered in her ear – and so she took her chances. Holding her head up high, she crossed the threshold of the diner, oddly startled by the usual jingle of the bells above the door as she entered. Quickly, she scanned the diner for Luke, but saw that Caesar was up front, instead. She was surprised, especially considering the fact that it was nearing the dinner rush. Lorelai headed up the stairs to his apartment, but found it locked. Strange.
She drifted back downstairs and sat at the counter next to Kirk. After a moment, she turned toward Kirk and smiled.
“Lorelai,” Kirk said tightly without facing her.
“Have you seen Luke?”
“Maybe?” she asked, amused. “You’re not sure?”
“No, I’m sure that I have or haven’t seen him. However, since you are the enemy and I cannot be seen fraternizing with the enemy, I’m going to have to abstain from answering you.”
“What are you talking about? Since when have I become ‘the enemy’? Is this about me not letting you watch cartoons while eating cereal, ‘cos, Kirk, I was doing that for your own good.”
“No, although I was upset about that.”
“It’s about the house.”
“What house? My house?”
“Oh, so you’re calling it your house already, are you? Wow, you’re even surer of yourself than Luke! Well, I may not seem like the next Joe Pesci –“ Lorelai frowned at his comparison – “but I can hold my own with the best of them.”
“Okay…” she replied, eyeing him cautiously.
“You know, Taylor likes me better than Luke. I think I’ll have a better chance than you.”
“A better chance to… what? Kirk, you’re only telling me half the story again.”
“A better chance to get the house!”
“To get the house? What house?”
“The Twickham House!” he replied, exasperated.
“What the hell, Kirk? Why would I care whether or not you get that house?”
“What are you talking about? Luke’s bidding on it for you two.”
“No he’s not. I’ve had a long, long day, so stop whatever weird Kirk-and-the-pie trick you’re playing.”
“I only did that once and I apologized like a billion times! Besides, I’m not joking this time, although I wish I was,” he finished sadly.
“Wait a second -” she grabbed Kirk’s shirt - “Luke put a bid on the Twickham House?”
“Oh my God,” Lorelai said as her hand flew to her mouth, “I can’t believe it…”
“He didn’t tell you?”
Lorelai shook her head. “No, he did,” she lied quickly, “I just – well, I forgot.”
This was enough of an explanation for Kirk. “So, I guess you and Luke are ready to take it to the next level, like Lulu and me, huh?”
“Well, not exactly,” she began slowly. “I mean, he told me he really liked the house and wanted to work on it for Old Man Twickham… I mean, it’s just… he’s sentimentally attached and –“
Kirk snorted. “For Old Man Twickham? Luke hated that guy!”
“Yeah, he used to leave stink bombs on the guy’s stoop when he was a kid.”
“Are you sure?”
Kirk nodded gravely. “One time, I was selling some Girl Scout cookies –“ Lorelai raised her eyebrow at this – “and unfortunately that was right before the bomb went off. I smelled like rotten eggs for weeks. Even mother’s beef stew didn’t do the trick.”
“Ah, well, I’m sorry, Kirk. That’s quite a sad story.”
“No, it’s not really that sad, compared to the others.”
“Uh huh, well, I have to go. See ya later, Kirk.”
“Goodbye, Lorelai. Oh wait, I’m not speaking to you…”
“Good luck with that, Kirk,” she called over her shoulder as she sped out of the diner.
She was running. She didn’t know where she was running to, but Stars Hollow was a small town, and she figured she would find Luke eventually. She stopped when she reached the Dragonfly, deciding she might as well make sure Luke hadn’t showed up there looking for her, and check up on Michel, as well. When she got to the desk, Michel’s frown increased dramatically and he let out a long sigh.
“So good of you to join us.”
“Michel, has Luke called or dropped by here, by any chance?”
“I don’t know; do I look like your own personal assistant?”
“No, but you do look like my employee…”
He narrowed his eyes at her. “As a matter of fact, yes, he did call. Five times. Oh, and he stopped by three times.”
“Really? Is he here now?” she asked, trying to keep calm.
“Do you know –?“
“Doing some diner-man type things, I assume. Something smelly and messy that’ll take off 40 years from your life.”
“Wonderful. How’s everything holding up here?”
“Fine. I am a competent manager, you know.”
“Yes, Michel, I’m not doubting your abilities, I’m just asking.”
“Well then, everything is fine. Oh, your child called today, too.”
“My child?” she repeated blankly, her heart speeding up. “Oh! Rory.”
“What other child would I be referring to? Do you have more than one that you keep hidden in a closet or something?”
“What did she say?”
“She’s in jail.”
“Michel, seriously, I have had a very long day. Do not test my patience!”
“No, you misunderstand me. To my delight, I am not joking.” He showed her a post-it note that distinctly read: Lorelai, your daughter is in jail. She needs you to bail her out. (This is not inn business!)
“Oh my God,” Lorelai whispered, stumbling backward. “What – I mean – I…”
“You should probably go.”
“Yeah,” she replied numbly, heading for the door without another word.
Lorelai entered her house in a huff, dropping the drug store bags to the floor as she tried to remember where she put her car keys. “Shit, shit, shit!” she screamed, falling back against the door as it closed.
Quickly, Luke came running out of the kitchen, relief immediately present on her face. She was even angrier with him now; she wanted him to feel as clueless as she did, if not more so! Luke approached her and was about to wrap his arms around her, when she deftly ducked out of his grasp. Luke stumbled backward, startled by her actions. Instead, she glared at him, daring him with her eyes to speak.
“Lorelai… where were you?”
“Where – what are you doing?” he asked, confused, as she pulled the couch cushions up.
“Need my car keys.”
“Obviously!” she replied as she threw a pillow in his direction. He moved his head to the side, and the pillow just barely missed him.
“Let me drive you.”
“Lorelai, what the hell is going on? I’ve been worried –“
“Oh, you’ve been worried? That’s rich, Luke!”
“What are you going off about?”
“I’d tell you where I’m going, but you know, I don’t really know where I’m going right now and that’s okay for me, but obviously not for you! So if you want to decide where I’m going, leave me out of it, okay?”
She pushed past him. “I’m leaving.”
“Is it Sookie? Rory?”
“No, yes; maybe.” She pointed a shaking finger at him. “I’ll deal with you later.”
“If something’s wrong with Rory, I should know!” he called as she left, but she merely slammed the door in his face. Luke stood there, staring at the door for a long moment, before shaking his head. Usually, he could at least somewhat understand where Lorelai was coming from, but right now, she was a complete mystery to him. “What the hell was that?” he asked the empty house. “Damn it!”
Lorelai drove with Rory and Logan in the backseat of her car, wondering angrily why Logan couldn’t have asked one of his insanely rich friends or family members to bail them out of jail. Rory hadn’t even looked at Lorelai since they’d left the police station and Lorelai, already worn from the day’s events, was at her wit’s end.
“So, would one of you like to share what could have possibly been going on in your minds that brought you to the point where you decided: ‘Oh, hey, let’s steal a Yacht’?”
Lorelai watched through the rear-view mirror as Logan and Rory exchanged nervous glances. They remained silent for a whole minute, before Rory replied. “We don’t have to explain ourselves to you.”
“No, ‘we’ don’t; you do.”
“Why? I’m 20; I’m an adult.”
“Oh, you’re right, I’m sorry. Next time you steal a Yacht with your boyfriend, I’ll just leave you in jail.”
“I knew we shouldn’t have called her,” Rory muttered under her breath.
“Why? Because I would tell you how stupid your actions were? ‘Cos they were…”
“I know! I’m not an idiot!”
“I thought so, too, but your actions today make me wonder just how far your intelligence stretches beyond those books of yours, Rory.”
“Look,” Logan interrupted, “Ms. Gilmore, it was my fault. I talked Rory into it.”
“It could’ve been the ghost of Chris Farley’s fault, for all I care. Rory was still involved, no matter whose idea it was. She has a mind of her own, you know.”
“I know, but –“
“Logan, stop!” Rory yelled. “You don’t need to defend me to my own mother. Besides, it was my idea.”
“Good for you.”
“Don’t act so self-righteous. I know you’ve done plenty of these types of things when you were a teenager.”
“Yes, and I was willing to face the consequences when I did.” Rory snorted in response. “Hey! I raised you, kid, didn’t I?” Rory fell silent at this comment. “Why did you do it? I mean, why a Yacht? Why not a… sailboat?” Lorelai tried again, her voice reflecting a calmness she didn’t feel.
“I wanted to take a trip on a Yacht and Logan wasn’t allowed to use his parents’ since he crashed it the last time.”
“You couldn’t have waited until Logan’s parents agreed?”
“We wanted to get away… quickly.”
“Get away?” Lorelai repeated dumbly.
“We wanted to take a trip… for a few months.”
“But you’re in school.”
Rory shrugged. “I want to take some time off.”
Lorelai breathed in sharply, willing herself not drive off the road. “What?”
“It’s my life, not yours,” she replied, the defensive edge back in her voice.
“That's true, but it’s my money paying for your education, not yours.”
“Actually, it’s mostly grandpa’s money.”
Lorelai bit her lip, trying to hide the hurt that Rory’s comment brought upon her. She knew Rory was just angry and trying to bait her – they had, after all, been drifting lately. Despite the fact that Lorelai had tried her hardest to hide it, Rory knew that she disapproved of Logan. It obviously hurt Rory to the point where she was treating Lorelai as Lorelai treated her own mother. She shuddered at this comparison, hating the fact that it was true. “Yeah, you’re right,” Lorelai eventually replied, before turning the radio on and driving the rest of the way in silence.
Lorelai’s cell phone rang for the third time that night. She ignored it.