Dawson's Creek
Four Stories

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The Scarlet N

Dawson 'N' Joey Fun Times Montage. Dawson and Joey walk along the boardwalk, and Dawson does that thing where he walks along beside Joey and then flips his leg up to kick her in the ass. Hee hee! I have to confess that that made me like Dawson for a split second, because it reminded me of Stand By Me, and it's something a real teenager might actually do. Also, I still do it to my brother all the time. Joey shoves him off the boardwalk. Time-lapse fade to Dawson booting her in the ass again. Hee. As an X-chromosome informs us, "You can't take that away from me," Dawson and Joey play with a herd of poodles. Dawson and Joey get coffee, and they laugh, and they sip their coffees, and then they realize that they have each other's drink, so they trade. Get it? No, really -- do you?

Eventually, their night o' soulmating ends where it began, under the marquee at the Rialto. "I guess this is good night," Dawson says glibly, and Joey thanks him for a lovely night, even though she knows it might sound silly. Dawson says that they'll "have to do it again sometime," and they bid each other a fond goodnight. Joey starts to walk away, but then she turns around and falters, "Dawson," at the same time that he blurts out, "Joey?" He goes first: "Did something happen? On the ski trip?" Joey bargains for time: "What do you mean?" Dawson has "this feeling, this kinda unshakeable feeling" that something happened. Joey begins to look afraid as he says that she doesn't have to answer if she doesn't want to, and she asks him, "What are you asking me?" Dawson -- who, to his credit, seems to realize that he's totally out of line -- checks himself briefly, then says he's asking if she slept with Pacey. Okay, Dawson? That's none of your business. I understand the sickening urge to know what your ex is getting up to, and with whom, but you do not ask them, because you try to have a little dignity and class in your life, so shut up. Also, shut up. And then you can...shut up. Furthermore, shut up. And in conclusion, SHUT UP.

Joey blanches, then parries with, "That's kinda personal, don't you think?" ["Odd, when the correct answer to the question is 'fuck off, virgin.'" -- Wing Chun] "I think it's really personal," Dawson admits, cringing. Joey asks what he'd think if she asked whether he'd slept with Gretchen yet. "The answer'd be no," Dawson says, too quickly, and I imagine he expects that, by copping to a rated-PG sex life himself, he's therefore entitled to full disclosure from Joey -- but he surprises me by blithering that, regardless, it's none of his business, and he apologizes for asking. Okay, he's a giant stinky ass for asking at all, but he gets points for at least sort of acknowledging it. Joey looks down, biting her lip, as Dawson still won't shut up, saying that he's not holding her to anything they might have said in the past (buh?), that he wants her to live her life and "be happy," and that he knows how it is to make a promise and mean it at the time, but then "life gets in the way." And, to his (partial) credit, he seems to mean it. Yeah, it's nosy; yeah, it's inappropriate -- wildly so. But I think that, for once, he's just asking out of simple curiosity and not in order to hold Joey's toes to the fire. Not to get all Dawson-apologist, but really, considering how hideously I expected the scene to play out on Dawson's end, it's gratifying that he proves me wrong. Well, sort of. He's still a jackass, though.

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Dawson's Creek




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