A/N: Hey look, I'm alive! Sorry about the wait; sometimes you don't really know how much you've written until you try to publish. These next two chapters are mostly Marty/Jeff friendship, just because it makes me happy. Enjoy. As usual, I own nothing.

To Marty, Sunday seemed to be over before it had even begun. But, he reasoned as he walked toward the school on Monday morning with the little squirt Jeffery, that's probably what happens when you sleep until 2:00 in the afternoon. He'd thought he wouldn't be able to sleep a wink, having just been told that he and his family could be dying, but his body had reminded him, forcefully, that he'd been hit by a car that day. By the time he arose the others had already eaten, but the remains of what proved to be a delicious lunch were waiting for him on the table. He guessed Phineas had cooked the meal; either that, or sometime between 1955 and 1985 something had gone seriously wrong with Doc's cooking skills. As Phineas and Jeffery were glued together, fiddling with their pocket watch time machine, and Doc seemed to have locked himself in his "lab", Marty had spent most of the day wandering around the old house with Copernicus. It figures, he'd thought, I'm stuck in the goddamn past and the only one who cares is the dog.

The others had finally emerged in late evening and all four of them had met in the dining room for dinner. They had come up with the plan to split up the following day-Marty would go to the school to help reverse the damage done to his parents' relationship, while Doc stayed behind to work on the broken DeLorean.

"I can help with that, Dr. Brown," Phineas had offered, sounding a little star struck.

Jeffery had rolled his eyes and said, "I can go with Marty. A kid will be less suspicious in a high school anyway."

Which was how Marty now found himself strolling along High Street with a pipsqueak tagalong. Yeah, a kid would be less suspicious, he grumbled to himself, a kid would be less suspicious if he looked older than twelve.

Jeffery seemed not to notice Marty's attitude (or else he was ignoring it), and kept up an annoyingly chipper conversation about Marty's home and school. He also asked an ungodly amount of questions about 1985 news, which Marty answered as best he could. Who cared about how the Yankees were doing in the American League anyway?

"So did Ronald Reagan run for re-election?"

"Oh, sure. He won by a landslide-I don't even remember who the other guy was, 'cause he never had a chance."

"And how was-" Jeffery started, but just then they rounded the corner and Hill Valley High School came into view. Marty breathed a sigh of relief and interrupted the kid's next question. "Wow, they really cleaned this place up."

Jeffery stopped and gave the school an appraising look. "It looks worse in your time zone?"

"That's a nice way to put it. This way-we'll get on their radar if we come in the front door." Marty led the way to his favorite side entrance he used to sneak in when he was tardy... so, practically every day. Jeff followed obediently, staring at everything like it was a Hollywood movie set. What's with this kid anyway? Marty thought, annoyed. If he's been telling the truth, he's met people like George Washington and Abraham Lincoln. My high school shouldn't be nearly as interesting as-

"Look out!" Jeffery's yell shook Marty out of his thoughts, but it was too late. He hadn't seen a young woman hurrying out of the door in front of them until she ran into him head-first. Both of them tumbled to the ground and the woman's papers went flying in every direction.

"Oh, I'm so sorry! I didn't see you there!" The woman exclaimed. "I was in such a hurry, I'm still new and lose track of things so easily-"

"It's fine, it's my fault too. I wasn't watching where I was going," Marty replied, struggling to untangle himself from the woman's puffy 50's skirt. After a few moments, he managed to stand up and offered a hand to the woman.

"Oh thank you," the woman said, and blushed prettily as Marty pulled her to her feet. "I'm Agnes Fairchild, the new secretary. I don't think we've met before, what is your name?"

Marty dropped her hand like a hot coal. "Uh, I'm, uh, Marty- uh, Calvin! Calvin Klein, but people, uh, call me, uh, call me Marty," he stammered, trying to avoid the blue eyes looking at him appreciatively. She was a very young secretary.

He was saved by the appearance of Jeffery, who'd been remarkably quiet during the whole ordeal. "Here are your papers, miss," he said politely but firmly directing the woman's attention away from Marty.

"Oh, thank you, young man," she exclaimed, and might have said more, but was distracted by a bell sounding the end of class. "Oh my! I'm late! There's a faculty meeting at ten... I'm glad I ran into you, Calvin." With a wink and a swish of skirts, she disappeared into the swarm of students now filling the hall.

"Whew," Marty sighed. "Remind me not to bump into her again."

Jeff laughed. "I don't know if you knew it, but you were perfect back there." Before Marty could ask what the hell he was talking about, the kid asked, "So which one is your dad?"

Marty scanned the throng of students... and sighed. "That's him," he said, pointing at a skinny, geeky boy with a "Kick Me" sign on his back. Several other boys were eagerly following the instruction.

"Him?" Jeff squeaked, torn between feeling sorry for the guy and trying not to laugh. They watched as, instead of defending himself, George McFly tried to laugh off the kicks but only succeeded in dropping his books.

Just then, Marty felt an automatic jolt of fear as a familiar bald head appeared on the scene. "It's Strickland!" he exclaimed to Jeffery. To Marty's surprise, the assistant principal looked exactly the same as in Marty's own time. "Jesus, didn't that guy ever have hair?"

Unfortunately for Marty, this Strickland had 30-years'-younger hearing. His head snapped up, and with barely a glance at George (who gratefully fled), he stalked over to the pair. "Dammit," Marty muttered.

"What did I just hear you say?" Strickland growled. "I can give you detention for insubordination!" He looked them over suspiciously. "Who are you anyway? You're not supposed to be here!"

Marty exchanged a worried look with Jeffery. "Well, Mr. Strickland, sir, we-"

"How do you know my name?" Strickland roared. "I know who you are, you're a couple of slackers out to cause trouble! Well not in my school. Out! Both of you!" He spun Marty around and tried to shove him toward the door. Teacher or no, Marty was about to shove back just to prove he was no one to mess around with, when Jeffery spoke up.

"You're Mr. Strickland? Oh look, Calvin, we finally found him!" The man spun on his heel to face Jeff, leaving Marty to "shove" the empty air. After regaining his balance, Marty shook his head, waved his arms, ANYTHING to get the kid to stop whatever is was he thought he was doing. The last thing Jeff wanted was to attract the attention of Strickland on the warpath.

Needless to say, Jeff ignored him. "Mr. Strickland, we've been looking everywhere for you! My name's Jeffery Jones, and that's my cousin, Calvin Klein. We've just moved here from Napa." Marty stopped waving his arms. The kid sounded perfectly sincere. The glare faded from Strickland's eyes, though he still looked somewhat suspicious.

"Oh yeah? One of them rich kids, are ya? Why wasn't I told about any new students to look out for?" Strickland asked, his eyes narrowing to slits as he bent down close to Jeffrey's face.

The kid didn't even twitch. "We're not technically enrolled yet, sir. My mother wanted us to tour the school to see if we wanted to go here or to Bloomfield." Marty blinked in surprise. Bloomfield was the name of the nearest private academy... and also happened to be the one thing Strickland hated more than students. How on Earth could Jeff have known about it?

"Bloomfield! That blasted, showy, money-sucking cesspool! Only ones that go there are slackers!" Strickland exclaimed, causing some passing students to turn their heads. "Only education worth getting is right here at Hill Valley High, boy,"-Marty snorted-"and you just tell your mother the same thing."

"I will, sir," Jeffrey replied, sounding as innocent and sincere as only a young child could. "Can we go on to class now? I'm sorry if we caused any trouble."

"Just one thing... Jones, is it? I need to see your passes. Can't be having random strangers walking around my school." He paused and held out his hand.

Marty's heart began beating in overtime. They were busted for sure. They were busted, and would get thrown out not only for trespassing, but lying about it too. What did the kid think he was doing anyway? How were-

To Marty's absolute astonishment, Jeff gave the principal a winning smile and dropped a slip of blue paper into his hand. "Here you go."

Marty held his breath as Strickland read the paper over, expecting to get thrown out at any second. But all Strickland did was give a grumbled "Humph!" and hand the paper back. "Fine. You just get along to class then, and don't be causing trouble in my school." As he stalked away, the pair heard him muttering, "Bloomfield!"

Marty could not believe his eyes. They were clear? And it was thanks to...a 13-year-old? He actually pinched himself to make sure he wasn't dreaming.

"Um, hello? Marty?" Marty started, realizing he'd spent the last 30 seconds staring open-mouthed at Jeffrey. The kid waved his arm in front of Marty's face. "We've still got a job to do, right? I have no idea where your dad ran off to."

Marty shook his head to clear it, then addressed the younger boy. "What the hell was that?"

"Huh?" Jeff asked, clearly confused. Well, that made two of them.

"That!" Marty gestured vaguely in the direction Strickland had left. "How did you do that? The whole cover story...and the pass..." he trailed off, but Jeffrey seemed to understand.

"Oh," he said, blinking as if he hadn't realized he'd done anything noteworthy. "We've used that one before. Bogg and I needed to help Elvis get into music when he was in 6th grade-"

"Wha- Elvis? Elvis Presley?" Marty couldn't help interrupting.

"Yeah, who else?" Jeff said matter-of-factly. "Anyway, so Bogg pretended to be my father interested in enrolling me in the school. That's better than actually having me go to the school, you know, 'cuz there's no paperwork, and we could come and go whenever we wanted to. I convinced Elvis to bring his guitar to school and show the kids what he could do, and the rest" he said with a grin, "is history. I figured your Mr. Strickland would leave us alone if he thought we might be offended enough to go to a different school."

Marty blinked. Obviously, there was more to Jeff than he'd thought. "But how did you know about Bloomfield? I didn't even know if it was built yet, and I live here!"

Jeffrey grinned. "I just took a look around. There's a poster for it near the door we came in. My mom..." Jeff's voice faltered for a moment, but he went on, determinedly cheerful. "My mom was a public school teacher, and she didn't like the nearby private school either."

Marty noticed a slight drop in Jeff's voice at the mention of his mother, and realized that was the first time he'd heard Jeff refer to his parents in any way. What kind of mom would let her son go running around history with a time-traveling pirate? There was something more to that story, but now wasn't the time to ask. "Okay, but how the hell did you get that pass? Strickland was gonna bust us for sure."

Jeff actually laughed at that. "I borrowed it from the lovely Miss Fairchild." His emphasis on the word "lovely" brought a flush to Marty's cheeks, which just caused the kid to laugh more. "Bogg's usually the one who provides the distraction while I check things out, but you did great. When I picked up her papers I noticed she had a stack of blank passes, so I just grabbed one. Thought it might be useful." He shrugged, dismissing the subject like it was an everyday thing. Hell, to him it probably is, Marty thought, and he looked at Jeffrey with a dawning respect. He may only be 13, but he wasn't a kid. He was curious, observant, and smart, yet didn't seem like he was prideful or a know-it-all. He knew how to handle a crisis better than Marty himself. And as much as Marty hated to admit it, Jeff's quick-thinking had saved them. Had saved him, although they'd only known each other less than two days.

Fine, so maybe he wasn't a complete pain in the ass.

With a start, Marty realized Jeff was looking at him as if expecting a response. "Oh," he said eloquently. "Well, um, thanks Jeff."

Jeff flashed him a blinding smile. "Anytime. So what now? Your dad's long gone."

Marty shook his head, remembering they were here for a reason. However, Jeff was right-George McFly was nowhere in sight and the next period would be starting at any second. The halls were beginning to clear as students headed for class, so the chances they would run into anyone familiar were...

"Calvin!" A nearby voice shrieked. Marty jumped half a foot in the air and whirled around, coming face-to-face with none other than Lorraine Baines. Her two friends trailed behind her, giggling softly. Behind him, he heard Jeff whisper, "Oh, no."

"Mo- uh, Lorraine!" Marty spluttered, still unable to comprehend his own mother staring at him like, well, that.

"How's your head?" she asked, voice full of concern as she reached out to touch it. Oh HELL no.

Leaning back quickly, he replied, "Good! It's all good." He quickly began scanning for exits but his mom's friends blocked him in. Jeff had melted into the background-he seemed remarkably good at being invisible when it suited him-and was biting his lip to keep from laughing aloud. Some help you are, Marty thought. "Listen, Lorraine-"

The tinny school bell had never sounded so beautiful. One of his mom's friends dragged on her arm, exclaiming, "Oh, we're tardy!"

"Sorry, I have to go," Lorraine said, releasing Marty with obvious reluctance. The longing in her eyes as she backed away made his gut clench. PLEASE don't tell me-

"So, we've got another problem," Jeff said, hesitantly coming over but not meeting Marty's eyes. "Your mom, um, your mom's definitely in love with you."

Hearing it was even worse. Marty shook his head in denial even though he'd seen it as well. "You mean my mother... has got the hots for me?"

"Uh, yeah?" Jeff said, valiantly attempting to keep a straight face. "How weird is that?"

"Oh, this is heavy," Marty muttered. How was he supposed to handle this? In fact... "If my mom likes, um, me, how are we going to get her to start dating my dad?"

"How should I know? They're your parents," Jeff said with a shrug. He began strolling down the now empty hallway, and Marty followed simply because he didn't know what else to do. "What do they like to do together?"

Marty paused for a second, considering. "Nothing," he replied.

"What do you mean, nothing? They must have something in common, they got married!" Jeff exclaimed incredulously.

"I don't know," Marty said, suddenly irritated for some reason. "I guess my mom felt sorry for him because her dad hit him with the car." He stopped short, rubbing his head injury as a horrible thought struck him. "Hit me with the car."

Jeffery's eyes widened. "That's why she's in love with you. You stole your dad's Florence Nightingale effect."

"Like when nurses fall in love with their patients?" Marty asked, making another turn. He realized he was unconsciously heading toward his favorite hiding spot that he and Jennifer used to cut class. This place will never be the same again, he thought, opening the door to the disused back staircase and ushering Jeffery through.

Jeff nodded. For an instant, Marty thought it was in appreciation of his hiding spot, and felt an inexplicable twinge of pride. Then he shook himself as he realized the nod was simply the answer to Marty's question. What was that about? he asked himself. There was no way he was seeking the approval of a 13-year-old... even one like Jeff.

"Yep," Jeff said, grinning as he settled himself on a step. "Would you believe me if I told you Bogg's the reason for that term?"

Marty snorted. "You serious?"

Jeff laughed aloud. "'Fraid so. We had an assignment in the Crimean War, and Bogg got injured. Guess who his nurse was?"

Marty fixed Jeff with an incredulous stare. He still couldn't get over how casually the boy referred to historical legends. It was hard to take him seriously at times. If it wasn't for the undeniable fact that he was from the 1980s... "You're kidding me. She fell for him, just like that?"

"She held out for a few days. For Bogg's standard, that's practically a millennium."

Marty found himself laughing along with Jeff's infectious grin. "Quite the womanizer, huh?"

"You have no idea. Sometimes I swear I'm here just to keep him on task." Jeff shook his head in mock defeat, then broke down into another laugh at his partner's expense.

Marty laughed too, and suddenly decided he HAD to ask. "How did you guys get into all-" he waved his arms, unable to find a word that could encompass the insanity of the Voyagers' jobs- "this, anyway?"

Jeff paused for a second, as if debating whether or not to answer Marty's question. That seemed odd to Marty, and he realized that despite how talkative and friendly the kid had been all morning, he'd said very little about himself. Just when Marty began to think he wouldn't answer, Jeff said, "Well, we told you how Voyagers works and everything earlier. Their headquarters has logs of everyone through all of history, and they keep an eye out for people who seem talented-smart, athletic, whatever-but who die at a young age."

"Who die?" Marty couldn't help interrupting. "What are you, history-fixing zombies?"

Jeff fixed him with an incredulous look. "Huh? No, that's ridiculous. What HQ does is pull these people right before they would have died. That way their absence can't have any effect on history. So like in Bogg's case, he was a pirate in 17th-century Nassau when he was swept overboard by a storm. His crew thinks he drowned."

Marty hardly knew what to do with that information. "So he really was a pirate?"

"Sure," Jeff said, stretching lazily. No big deal to him. "Where else do you think he got those clothes?"

Marty shook his head. It wasn't like that was any more incredible than everything else that had happened in the past two days. "So what about you? Were you supposed to croak too?"

The boy's face shadowed, and Marty realized that probably hadn't been the most tactful way to ask that question. But the boy answered readily enough. "Oh, uh, no, they don't really recruit Voyagers my age. It's actually kind of a long story." He paused, but continued at the sight of Marty's expectant look. "See, Bogg broke into my room."

"What?" Whatever Marty had been expecting, that wasn't it.

Jeff chuckled slightly at Marty's confused look. "Yeah, he was trying to get to 1492, but his omni malfunctioned. Put him right outside my 18th-story window. I'm from New York," he added in response to Marty's confused look.

"Anyway, I was only 11 and I freaked out when I saw this strange guy dangling from my windowsill. He busted the window in and got inside-so he wouldn't, you know, fall to his death-and was saying something about Columbus, but I couldn't really focus because I was too scared to even yell. But then," he gave a short laugh and smiled to himself, as if remembering an inside joke, "my dog Ralph leapt up and grabbed his Guidebook."

"His what?" Marty asked. He'd been following the story with interest. If he'd been 11 and saw a strange pirate guy break into his 18th-floor bedroom, he would have been scared shitless.

"Guidebook. It's a book that's supposed to tell a Voyager what's wrong with the history in whatever time zone they land in, but Ralph obviously thought it made a better chew toy. I ran over there to try to get Ralph to let go, but I lost my grip and kinda...fell out the broken window."

You what?" Marty's heart began to beat faster, as if the kid was falling out of a skyscraper at that moment.

"It's fine! Bogg saw me fall and dove right after me, omnied us out of there, and we landed safely in Egypt. We've been Voyaging together ever since." Jeff cocked his head, peering at Marty as if trying to gauge his reaction to this incredible story. Marty wasn't sure of his reaction himself. It seemed to him as if Jeffrey's life was the retelling of a good movie, but here was the living, breathing proof, stuck with him in his own high school in 1955. Marty realized that at this point his own life probably resembled a movie too.

Still, something about the tale seemed just a bit off. "You said he couldn't take you back, right? Like you guys can't get me back home?"

"Right." Jeff looked down and muttered something under his breath that Marty couldn't quite catch. It almost sounded like, "wouldn't want to go back anyway."

That puzzled him. Marty's own life might be a mess, but no matter how much his folks drove him crazy, or his siblings thought he was a pain, or his teachers threatened to fail him, he still couldn't imagine not going back. "What about your parents? Aren't they, you know, looking for you?"

Jeffery's whole demeanor changed instantly. His shoulders slumped, and his face went completely blank except for his mouth, which was pressed into a small, tight line. Without meeting Marty's eyes, he began, "My parents-"

The sound of the door on the floor above them slamming open cut off whatever he'd been about to say. Someone was coming down the stairs. With a look of pure relief, Jeff leapt up and silently opened the ground floor door. The two teens slipped out and ducked around a row of lockers, avoiding the gaze of the student who walked right by them. Until they came up with a plan, it was best not to be seen by anyone. With Jeff's pass, they might have an excuse to be in the building, but they had none for lurking in a stairwell.

After the danger had passed, Marty glanced up at a nearby wall clock. "The bell's gonna ring soon. What are we going to do about my folks?"

Jeff frowned in contemplation as he studied the walls of the hallway, then suddenly brightened. "How 'bout a dance?"

Marty, who had just been beginning to actually enjoy Jeff's company, stopped dead with an uncomfortable churning in his stomach. He really hoped he'd misheard that. "I, uh, Jeff, that's, uh, I don't really..." He trailed off, realizing the kid was staring at him like he had two heads.

"What are you talking about? Your parents, Marty! Look!" He pointed toward something behind the older teen.

Marty turned toward the wall Jeff indicated, and was greeted by a large blue poster covered with fish. Reading the words, he felt first a wave of relief, and then smacked himself for not realizing it sooner. "Of course! The Enchantment Under the Sea Dance! They're supposed to go to this; that's where they kiss for the first time."

"Really? Great!" Jeffrey exclaimed, smiling broadly. "Let's go get your dad a date."

At that moment, the bell rang and all around them students began pouring into the hallway. Joining the throng headed to the cafeteria, Marty felt calm for the first time since his arrival. They were on the right track. All they had to do was get his dad to ask his mom to a dance-something his dad had done completely on his own in the real timeline-and trust Doc to fix the time machine to get him home. No problem.