Dawson's Creek
The Anti-Prom

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The Anti-Prom

Outside, Joey finds Jack sulking on the deck. "Care to make a run for it?" she asks, and he says, "Yes, please." Heh. Joey slumps against the railing and asks, "So what are you hiding from?" "I am hiding from Barbara Johns," Jack sighs, and when Joey says incredulously, "She's here?" Jack says no, but "in a way she is," and he goes on to say that Barbara "was right, Joey -- I don't belong here. I'm not gonna dance with Ethan, I'm not gonna have my picture taken with him, and whatever good time I was gonna have tonight, I just ruined it by the way I treated him." "You really like him, don't you," Joey says, and Jack doesn't answer, but Joey says she remembers a conversation less than a year ago when all Jack could see "was the pain and the loneliness that made your life different from everyone else's." "As opposed to now," Jack says acidly, "when all I can see is the pain and loneliness that makes our lives the same?" Joey smiles wryly. Jack tells her that he knows "how sad it is to hide from something that you really want," and Joey repeats that she just wants everything "to go back to the way it was, you know, I -- all of us friends again, and me not caught in the middle." Jack tells her that, to accomplish that, she has to "set the example," because Dawson and Pacey can't do it themselves yet. Huh? Joey wants to hide out there for a while longer first. "Sounds good to me," Jack says. Joey takes his hand and thanks him, and he thanks her back.

Inside, The Flash and Gale dance. Gale says she packed a bag for that night; she thought maybe she could stay over. The Flash doesn't know about that: "I'm not here just for your whim, Gale." Gale doesn't get it. The Flash airs her out for always leaving it up to him to define their relationship, and ditches her on the dance floor. Gale looks worried. Snore.

Joey asks Pacey to dance. He accepts, looking quietly thrilled. They begin dancing, a bit awkwardly. "How come this feels so right?" Pacey whispers. "I think it was those dance lessons," Joey smiles. As Pacey tucks a lock of hair behind Joey's ear, we see Andie gazing at them and her heart falling into her stomach, and then we cut back to Pacey asking Joey where she got the earrings: "They're not you." Joey, defensively: "Why, because I'm just a poor tomboy, or 'cause Dawson gave them to me?" Neither, Pacey says, and points to her bracelet, saying, "This is you. It's not showy, or gaudy. Just simple. Elegant. Beautiful," and his voice breaks a little at the end. "My mom's bracelet," she says, and he says, "I know," and when she asks how he knows, he reminds her that she told him "six months ago -- you were wearing that blue sweater with the snowflakes that you have, we were walking down the hallways at school, I was annoying you as per usual. You said, 'Look, Pacey, I just found my mother's bracelet this morning, so why don't you cut me some slack.'" Joey, flattered: "You remember that?" Pacey: "I remember everything." Yeah, I think we get it, but you'd better send an anvil over here just in -- oh, look, you already have. Also, ow. The camera pans over Pacey's shoulder to show a livid Dawson glaring at them and undulating his nostrils like the wings of a manta ray. Joey rests her head against Pacey's. Andie stares blearily at them from the depths of her eye make-up and tries not to cry. Pacey closes his eyes and blisses out; over his shoulder we see Joey struggling internally some more. Then she catches sight of Flare-y S. Truman and freezes, probably terrified by the poisonous blond anemone that has attached itself to his skull in the guise of hair. Pacey feels Joey freeze, and freezes himself. Dawson snits off. Joey turns a Droopy-Dog face to Pacey as her eyes fill with tears.

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Dawson's Creek

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