"I climbed out the window."
"Oh." He said somewhat amused.
"Oh? That's it? You're not going to ask why?"
"Hmph, that's why I love you." Lorelai said. She then froze. Had I really just said that?...
"What?" Luke said shocked. Had she really just said that?
"Uh… I mean… Uh… Nothing. I've got to go." Lorelai said feeling her cheeks go red and got up and rushed away.
Luke saw her getting flustered telling him it wasn't just a joke or even meant for friends, this was weird, this wasn't typical everyday Lorelai. He watched her rush off, before he had any idea what he was doing he started to chase after her.
Luke caught up with her on the bridge, spotting her having an internal crisis. "Lorelai wait!"
Lorelai turned round. "Oh Luke, uh…I've got to get home." Trying to avoid anything to do with whatever just happened.
"Did you mean it?" he said hoping she did.
"I don't know." Lorelai admitted. "I said it before I knew what I was saying…"
"Lorelai… just… just be honest with me here, did you mean it like you love me as your friend, the guy who pours your coffee, or... or… something else"
"I honestly don't know Luke, maybe… something else" she mumbled, looking at the ground trying so hard not to make eye contact with him.
"Maybe something else…" Luke repeated trying to understand the situation himself.
"I just have a lot going through my head, of so much, you know me, it never stops, and I haven't had a good time with the world of men lately and… uh… there's Max and Chris and you slipped in there… what do I mean slipped, you're always in there, I see you every day, you feed me and give me my elixir, fix my house, just always there for me, and now I am ranting, and honestly freaking out, and you should really stop me before I say more stupid things, because really I can just go on and on you know me, well of course you do we see each other every day and have for the last 5 years and of course feelings are gonna develop because you're my best friend bar Rory and Sookie except they aren't as good looking as you and oh god I really need to just lie down in this grave I have dug, alive preferably, smothered in dirt because now you think I am crazy, well who am I kidding I kind of am and just you know –"
"LORELAI!" Luke said finally getting her to stop "I just want to know, that's all, I just wanted to know if you meant it, if not the big L word but some kind of feelings, in the lines of romantic ones I mean".
"Does it really matter Luke? I can barely control my mouth sometimes, it's amazing I don't work on a sailing boat"
"Lorelai, please, please just answer me… tell me I am not alone in this" he said desperately
"Alone in what?"
"…in these feelings"
"You… you mean you have feelings for me?"
"YES!" gosh that actually felt a little good for him to finally admit, but he was worried about her reaction.
"Well… I think… maybe I do" this made Luke smile, his heart warming on this inside. "but – it's not as easy as that for me, I need to sort out things with Max and stuff and I really really need to talk to Rory or Sookie and just think, clear my head for once" Lorelai said frustrated and with that she rushed off home leaving Luke standing alone in the dark, he thought to himself OK she's needs to think then I will give her time to think, but this is finally my chance, well I think it's my chance… please god let this be my chance.
Back at home, she was sat on the sofa, evaluating everything that happened so far that evening and had to hash something things out so with the phone in her hand, she dialed a number.
"Hi, you've reached Max Medina. I'm not here right now so leave a message at the beep and I'll get back to you. Thanks." Lorelai sighed, she wasn't exactly sure why she was calling him, maybe it was closure or maybe it was something else. She was debating about calling another number but she was interrupted by the front door opening and Rory coming in, looking very upset. She immediately forgot everything as she looked at her daughter. "Rory?" She said.
"We broke up…" Rory said trying exceptionally hard not to show any other emotion she may had been feeling.
"Aw hon…" Lorelai said softly, getting up from the sofa and giving her a hug. "What happened?"
"We just broke up, that's it." Rory said going towards her room, gathering every piece of Dean Memorabilia, everything that reminded her of him.
"That can't just be it!" Lorelai states "This is Dean! The person who calls you like 20 times a day, who probably sleep talks your name and if it was anyone else I would call someone to take the stalker away."
"Yeah well people change." Rory said shoving the box to her mom. "Hide this, trash it, do whatever so I don't have to see it, I'm really tired mom. I just want to go to sleep."
"Um OK. I'll see you in the morning then." Lorelai said. She was worried, clearly something more had happened, she couldn't help think the worse, but that isn't dean, she also knew this wasn't the right time to bring up what had happened between her and Luke.
The next day, Rory forced Lorelai to wake up insanely early at the unholy hour of 6am… on a SATURDAY! Rory wanted breakfast, and breakfast meant Luke's. Lorelai was nervous to go but she knew Rory needed a Luke's fix but she didn't want her to think something was up, she needed Rory to think about other things, like wallowing, or at least consider it. They started walking towards Luke when Rory stopped.
"We can't go that way." Rory said.
After much discussion of which way they could go, they ended up going a long way, lurking through an alley and entering Luke's from the back entrance.
"Wow!" Lorelai said, looking around at all the people. "I officially don't recognize any of these people."
"It's the 6am crowd." Rory said.
Suddenly, Rachel then appeared making Lorelai feel awkward.
"Hi Lorelai!" She said brightly obviously not noticing the awkwardness. "Coffee as you wait?"
"Sure thanks. So are you… are you gonna be hanging around for a while then?" Lorelai said, surprising herself hoping Rachel would say no, maybe these feelings for Luke are completely real and not my current pathetic level of desperation AKA one level away from buying my first cat.
"Yeah, I hope so, I mean I have kind of missed having a place to call home, you know?"
"Yeah, I do actually" and she truly did, stars hallow was the first place she felt like she belonged. "Oh Rachel, this is my daughter Rory."
"Nice to meet you." Rachel smiled at her, she has a daughter? Who is clearly a teenager? And no-jam-hands-Luke is okay with that?
"You too." Rory said back. "Oh mom, look there's a table."
"Go ahead, I'll be right with you!" Rachel said.
Lorelai looked round and couldn't see Luke which was a bit of a relief, please be out at a meeting, or asleep or staying in the kitchen she internally begged.
"Everyone knows!" Rory said looking round.
That made Lorelai's heart jump a bit, know about me and Luke last night, what how did they find out? Then she suddenly realized she was talking about her break up with Dean. "Hon, its 6am. I doubt people have found out." Lorelai said.
"They know. Everyone knows." She said glumly.
Lorelai sighed and went up to the counter to order food just as Luke appeared from upstairs. "Oh….hi…good morning sleeping beauty" She said awkwardly, man he looks extra good today, did he shave? Yup he did, I can smell the aftershave I bought him.
"Hi…" Luke answered. "Um I didn't expect you this early…" it is Saturday and this is Lorelai after all, maybe she didn't sleep? Maybe her decision was too easy, she didn't mean it did she.
"Yeah, um, Rory needs a Luke's fix. Dean broke up with her yesterday." Lorelai said covertly.
"What? Why? I knew that kid was trouble! Does he think he will get better than Rory?" Luke ranted in an angry whisper, who would ever dump a Gilmore girl! Rory is the sweetest kid alive, I would do anything for her, wait until I see that dean!
"Shhhhh!" Lorelai said. "Rory doesn't want everyone knowing. She's paranoid enough as it is. Can you do her some of the Rory pancakes?"
"Sure and I'll even add whipped cream to them."
"Thanks Luke." Lorelai smiled, forgetting the awkwardness. It was nice how much Luke cared about Rory.
"Um yeah I'll bring them over." Luke said.
"OK…" Lorelai said starting to walk away.
"Oh wait Lorelai?"
Man she was beautiful, even before 7am "I uh… just wanted…"
"Just wanted what?" Lorelai prompted, please don't ask about last night I am not ready for what happened last night.
"Nothing… I'll ask later, I will just get your food ready" he said, letting her go back to her table.
Rachel had witnessed basically all of this exchange from afar and was curious, she walked up to him and asked "What was that all about?"
"Oh um, Rory and her boyfriend broke up last night…" Luke said. "Lorelai was just asking for some of my special pancakes for her, we both know they cheer her up, even just a little bit, when she was little she would have them when one of her favorite characters in her books died, or she scraped her knees, or one time it was when her pet caterpillar died."
"Oh right. Sounds like you've known them for a while." Rachel said and went off to do get some more orders but her thoughts were clouded with Luke having what sounded like a surrogate daughter or niece type of thing for the past however many years, she realized she must have been gone longer than she thought, this Luke hanging out with a little girl now teenager didn't sound like the Luke she left all those years ago.
As Luke was behind the counter, he saw Dean walking towards the diner. He went outside.
"Stop right there. Where are you going?"
"To get coffee."
"Oh no you don't."
"You're not going in there."
"Are you kidding?" Dean said confused.
"Does this face look like I'm kidding?"
"Well no, but that's nothing new!"
"What's that supposed to mean?"
"Well you're not exactly the Cheshire cat." Dean said and attempted to get past Luke but he stopped him and they started fighting.
Rachel was at the counter when she saw this. She then saw Lorelai and Rory look up and run outside and Lorelai attempted to stop the fight and succeeded. What on earth is going on? Why is Luke fighting some kid? She thought. Could that be the boyfriend but then why would Luke fight the boyfriend? Wow he must seriously love Rory to fight the boy who broke her heart, as if he was her dad, hmm where is her dad? She continued watching and saw Lorelai pushing Luke towards the diner and then she and Rory walked off down the street.
Lorelai went home while Rory went to Lane's for a bit. She was thinking about trying to call max again, not getting a chance to the previous night. As she headed for the phone, it started to ring giving her a fright. She answered not knowing who or what to expect, could it be Luke? Could it be Max? "Hello" she answered
Nope just the she-devil herself.
"Yes Lorelai it's your mother, how dare you skip out of dinner without saying anything, I was so humiliated in front of Chase"
"Oh were you now, humiliated huh? Gee I wonder how that feels"
"Oh don't be smart with me missy, yes humiliated, we waited in the living room for you to return for a while, only to find your bedroom empty with the window open!"
"Well how do you think I feel, having my mother set me up with the world's most dull uninteresting mind-numbing guy ever! Without asking by the way"
"Oh please he wasn't that bad"
"But you agree he was bad at some degree… Mom…" Lorelai sighed "even dad thought he was boring, and dad works in insurance!"
"That is beside the point, he is nice and accomplished and you left him here like he was the high school mascot, also not saying proper goodbyes is extremely rude, especially when we have a deal, you are here for dinner you do not skip out by shimmying down the drain pipe"
Lorelai was growing tired of this conversation with her mother, more than usual, it was drawing attention away from her thoughts of Luke and the conversation last night and her worrying of Rory handling things not in a normal manner. "Mother listen, I do not need you interfering with my life, I do not need you setting me up, I am perfectly capable with getting my own dates, believe me, and I stuck to our deal, I came for dinner, I drank some alcohol, answered your questions about my week, what I didn't ask for was my mother playing Yente for me as if we were stuck in olden times, tell me, how much is my dowry worth?"
"Oh Lorelai stop being so dramatic, I was just trying to help, you don't tell me anything to do with your love life, I am merely concerned for my daughters happiness, you just turned 33 you aren't getting any younger."
"yes thank you for reminding me, and also its 2001, I do not need a man to make me happy, I am happy, why don't you understand that, now I have to go an take an Advil, I'll see you Friday, goodbye." GAAAAHH she internally screamed, her mother had put her in a mood but seeing as she was already holding the phone she thought why not and dialed the familiar number again.
"Hello?" A voice answered this time round.
"Max?" Lorelai said.
"Lorelai?" He said surprised but pleased.
"Yeah um I think we need to talk..." She said.
"Yeah I think so too..."
"I don't think we would work. I'm sorry. You're Rory's teacher. It's too complicated."
"Oh." Max said disappointed. "That didn't bother you before though?"
"I know but I just don't think it would work. Sorry." She said and then quickly hung up. She felt bad. She had really liked Max but she needed to get her head straight first, she needed to sort what these feelings with Luke are about first.
Rory arrived back about half an hour later and she seemed a bit happier which Lorelai was glad about. Rory announced she had been invited to a party at one of the Chilton girls houses in Hartford, she decided to go despite it being against Lorelai's better judgment, Lorelai desperately wanted her to wallow.
Rory interrupted her thoughts concerning her daughter, "Mom, I never asked how dinner was yesterday. I'm sorry I wasn't there." Rory said sitting down next to her mom on the sofa.
"Oh it was the usual. Figured out why you got out of it so easily, my mother set me up on a very boring date and then I climbed out the window and escaped." She said.
Rory chuckled. "Sounds eventful!"
"Yep it was just that…" Lorelai said, thinking about how the evening ended eventful indeed.
Later that evening, Rory had gone off to Madeline's party, dragging lane along with her. Meanwhile back in stars hollow Lorelai had the house to herself, it felt too quiet, and she felt too lonely in her own world. She needed to finally make some decisions, well actually she needed a proper conversation with a certain diner man, praying that whatever outcome wouldn't compromise their friendship, he is her best friend she needs him, and well judging by what she has seen of his life, he probably needs her as well. But he has Rachel now…until she decides to leave again anyhow she thought. The quietness in her house began to irritate her, she figured a walk might do her well to clear her head and think of things to say to Luke. She didn't want to bug Sookie while she and Jackson were on a date, and Babette went to watch Morey play at a gig in Woodbridge, also at this time in Stars hollow, most of the town is wrapped up in bed by now.
Before she knew it her body had betrayed her and she was inside the diner, well now is as good as any other time she thought. Rachel was downstairs cleaning her camera equipment.
"Oh hey Rachel, quiet night? Getting some of that scandalous action?"
"Hey Lorelai, yeah, you know the Stars Hollow life, but the fairy lights spoke to me this evening so I couldn't help it, actually I was about to close if you wanted the last cup of coffee?"
"Oh actually I need to talk to Luke, so maybe after, is he around?"
"Uh yeah he's upstairs, I told to him just relax, and let me handle down here as a thanks for putting up with me and turning his place into my studio" she says with a slight giggle.
"Right right, you sure love your camera, well I'm just gonna…" stopping her sentence but nodding her head towards the stairs.
"Yeah sure go ahead" Rachel replied wondering what's that about.
Lorelai headed upstairs to the one bedroom apartment, knocking on door, holding her breath anticipating what's to happen next, she wasn't sure how long she had with Rachel staying there and all, but she felt she was somewhat ready and needed to talk now before she chickened out.
"Lorelai… Hi" Luke said when he opened the door, genuinely surprised to see her there
"Hey… uh… can I come in?"