Disclaimer: Alas, I own nothing. Not Lorelai. Not Rory. Not Luke (wipes away a tear). Nothing.

Chapter 15- Ignorance is Bliss

Josh Mellville went around the diner, clearing the tables of empty plates and cups. On the days Caesar, Luke, and Lane were working, he and Will were there to clear off tables and refill drinks. He heard Luke tell Caesar he'd be right back. In the corner of his eye, he watched Luke disappear behind the curtain. Josh looked up when he heard the bells above the door jingle, hoping it would be a certain young lady walking into her grandpa's diner for lunch, but it wasn't. In fact it was the opposite. It was his mom and she was carrying a tray with seven different types of slices of cake.

"Luke!" Sookie called as she ran to the counter. "Luke, get your butt out here right now!"

"Aunt Sookie?" Will called as he walked out of the storeroom.

"Wrong Luke. I'm looking for the big one. Tall, flannel shirt, backwards baseball cap, fifty-five years old, nice butt…"

"Ah jeez," Will groaned.

"What? Hey, you inherited your dad's butt. It's a nice butt!"

"Mom, what have I told you about staring at my friends' butts? It's creepy," Josh said as he walked over to Sookie.

"I'm just saying Will has Luke's butt." She turned to Will. "If your dad's butt is any indication of what you're butt's gonna look like in forty years, be happy knowing it's not gonna drop."


"Hey, is that cake?" Will said reaching out to taste the cake. Sookie slapped his hand before he could taste it.

"Oh no you don't. These are for your father," Sookie scolded.

"My dad hates cake."

"Tough luck. He has to make a decision."

"For what?"

"For the cake."

"What cake?"

"The one I'm making for his party."

"You mean the party he's not supposed to know about?" Josh asked.

"That's right, it's supposed to be a surprise," Sookie said. "Ah shoot. Maybe I can tell him it's for a birthday party. Oh! It's for Will's birthday party."

"My birthday was like four months ago Aunt Sookie," Will remarked.

"Well, then, I'll make something up. Where is he?" Will shrugged. "Josh?"

"I think he's upstairs, but…" Before Josh could finish his sentence, Sookie interrupted him.

"Thanks. I'll be right back," she said disappearing behind the curtain. "And don't eat the cake!"

She headed up the stairs to Luke's old apartment. "Luke, are you up…" Sookie trailed off when she saw Luke put pills in his mouth and wash them down with some water.

Luke immediately backed to the counter hiding the medicine bottles from Sookie's view, then swiping them into the top drawer and leaning against that drawer. "Sookie, I didn't hear you come up," he said nervously.

She raised a brow as she walked further into the apartment. "What did you just do?"

"Huh? Nothing."

"You just put a bunch of pills in your mouth. And now you're hiding something."

"Sookie, I'm not…"

"You are! Yes you are! Lorelai maybe denying it, but I know there's something up!"

Maybe it was his new medication, but he didn't seem to have the energy to fight or lie today. But he wasn't about to admit it either. He knew he was only trying to convince himself. If he didn't talk about it, acted like there was nothing wrong, then maybe it'd go away. But the shooting pains in his chest at two in the morning said otherwise. He was deep in thought and off guard, so Sookie took this as her opportunity to push Luke away from the counter.

"Sookie!" Luke yelled as he stumbled a little. He slowly headed over to Sookie, trying to stop her from discovering his secret. "Sookie, don't…" Too late.

Sookie read from the labels. "Take two tablets, three times a day for…" she trailed off when she saw the last word. She slowly looked up at Luke, who had hung his head again. No, she tole herself. She must have read wrong or something. She frantically searched each label hoping to see something different, but each said they were for angina, helping keep the heart rate normal, blood pressure, and things like that.

"You have…" Sookie was interrupted when Luke spoke.

"Coronary heart disease," Luke said.

"But…how? You're the healthiest person I know!"

Luke shrugged. "Some people just get all the luck."

"Oh my God. Lorelai, must be a wreck. She sure knows how to hide it though." Sookie put the bottles on the counter and headed for the door. "I better go talk to…"

"She doesn't know.

Sookie froze and faced Luke. "Excuse me?"

"Lorelai doesn't know." Sookie walked swiftly over to Luke and started punching his arm. "Hey! What the hell? Stop that! Ah! Sookie! Have you lost your mind?"

"Have I lost my mind? You are the one that lost your mind! Luke! How can you not have told Lorelai? Lorelai, your wife!"

"How the hell am I supposed to tell my wife that I'm gonna die?" Sookie just stared at Luke. He took a deep breath and dropped his head. "Look Sookie, I know this is big and I know I have to tell Lorelai." Sookie opened her mouth to speak, but Luke wouldn't let her. "But I can't right now. She's happy Sookie. Will hasn't gotten into any trouble lately, Rory and Logan haven't had a big fight in a week, Richard's getting back on his feet, Richie's having his operation, and I just got that position on the board of elders. She's finally healing from Emily's death. I can't drop this on her now. Please Sookie. Don't tell her. Promise me you won't tell Lorelai."

"Tell me what?" Lorelai asked as she walked into the room.

Lori Huntzberger was beautiful. She was tall, slender, slightly tanned, and well developed in all the right places- even at the age of fourteen. She inherited her grandmother's bright smile and even though it was biologically impossible, she firmly believed she received an athletic gene from Luke because God knows Logan and Rory didn't have an athletic bone in their bodies. She was built like an athlete. She had her father's blonde hair and her mother's infamous Gilmore blue eyes. There was no doubt in anyone's mind that Lori Huntzberger was beautiful. Heads turned every time she and/or Emma passed by.

When guys first meet the "Glamourous Gilmores," they wonder why they're still single. Then they meet Will and it becomes all too clear. With him around, no man in their right mind would dare ask the girls out. But there are some guys that just don't know how to give up.

Lori walked into the music store and waved hello to Dave. "Morning Mr. Rygalski," she smiled.

"Good morning Lori," Dave greeted. "I see you have a softball game today."

"Yup. I'm about to head to the diner for Grandpa's traditional pre-pep talk pep talk. I just stopped by to pick up some CDs first."

"Aren't you guys playing Litchfield today?" Joey asked as he walked out of the back.

"Yeah. Why?"

"I heard they got better since last year. Rumor has it they've been practicing year round."

Lori groaned. "Gee thanks Joey. I don't think I need Grandpa's pre-pep talk pep talk now. I think I need a prayer. I'm gonna go get my CDs or are you gonna drop another bomb on me?"

"This probably isn't the best time to tell you but we're no longer a music store. We're sell vitamins and supplements for now on."

"Ha, ha, ha. You're a regular Jerry Lewis. I'm looking for a Michael Bublé CD. Got any?"

"Check the jazz section. We also got in that Fall Out Boy CD you were looking for last week. Kept a copy in the back for ya. I'll bring it out when I ring you up."

"Thanks Joey. I'm loving ya baby. Statue's going up tomorrow."

Joey laughed. "Let me know when you're ready." He watched as Lori disappeared around the corner. He turned his head to find his father staring at him with a smirk. "What?"

"I'm not stupid. I know what's going on," Dave smirked.

"I don't know what you're talking about."

"Oh come on Joey. I saw the way you were looking at her."

Joey shook his head and picked up another box of CDs. "Well, maybe you outta get your eyes checked Dad because there was nothing going on."

"I don't blame you son. She's a good looking girl."

"You talking about Lori Huntzberger?" Dominic asked.

"No," Joey replied quickly.

"Hey, I don't blame you. She's a real looker, but she's not my type. Just ask my girlfriend."

"I don't got a thing for Lori," Joey stated. "Besides, not like it matters. Looks like she's got her eye on someone." Joey pointed down one of the aisles where Lori was talking to someone.

"Lucky bastard," Dominic laughed. "I'm not surprised. With their families' history, it was bound to happen." He shook his head and turned his attention to Joey, who began to ring him up.

Meanwhile, across the store, Lori was looking through the CDs when someone walked up to her from behind. "His other CD is better," a male voice said, making her jump a little.

"Ah!" she gasped. She turned around to see who it was. "You scared the ba geezes outta me!"

"The ba geezes? Your papaw isn't here Huntzberger. You can say what you wanna."

Lori smiled innocently. "Don't mock my grandfather Holden."

"I'm not mocking him. I'm mocking you."

"Bye Holden." Lori tried to walk past Holden, but he caught her arm.

"Ok, ok. I'll stop. Jeez Huntzberger, I was just kidding around. Why do you have to take things so seriously all the time? Would it kill you to lighten up?"

"Would it kill you to take things seriously once and a while?"

"I don't see how we're not friends Lori. Our folks are great buddies."

"Simple. You're a butt faced miscreant and your dad is a really nice guy."

"Did you just call me a butt faced miscreant?"

Lori rolled her eyes. "I'm late for my pre-pep talk pep talk with Grandpa."

"Why do you call Luke 'Grandpa'? He's not really your grandfather. He's not related to you."

"One of us needs to know we're proud to have him a part of this family. He's your great uncle Holden and you just haphazardly throw around his name like it's nothing. Like he's nothing."

"Hey, Luke means a lot to me and my dad and my brothers…"

"And that's why your dad's been avoiding him since your mom died?"

"Don't talk about my mother!" Everyone in the store stopped what they were doing and stared at the two teenagers. Holden hadn't realized how loud, or forceful, he had been until he saw the frightened look in Lori's eyes. "Ah jeez. I'm sorry Lori. I didn't mean to…"

"No," Lori interrupted. "I shouldn't have brought up your mother. I'm just…I'm gonna go now."

Lori headed to the counter with her CD and Holden right behind her. Joey timidly rang up her CDs. "Your total is twenty eight seventy six," Joey said.

Before Lori could get out her wallet, holden put money on the counter. "I got it," he said.

"You really don't have to," Lori said.

"Yeah, well it's the least I can do for scaring the ba geezes outta ya."

Lori lowered her head and smiled. "Thanks. Well, I have to go. Luke's waiting for me. I'll see you gentlemen later." Dave, Joey, and Dominic waved goodbye to Lori as she turned and headed to the door.

"Hey Lori," Holden called as she was about to walk out the door. She stopped and faced him. "Tell your grandfather I say hi."

Lori smiled. "I sure will." With that and one last goodbye wave, she was gone.

"That Lori Huntzberger is one fine woman," Joey said as they watched Lori cross the street.

"I hate to see her go," Dominic sighed.

"Yeah, but I love to watch her leave," Holden laughed.

"Just keep your head in the game," Luke told Emma and Lori. "They're gonna try to shake you up by talking crap, but do not let it get to you. Stay focused and pay no attention to anyone else but your coach and your team mates. Win or lose, I'll be proud of you two."

"And you two are looking very gorgeous in those uniforms," Lorelai added. "The blue goes great with your eyes." Luke shot his wife a glare, warning her not to mock him- as she always did when he gave his little talks. "What? They do? And they're advertising the diner. Even better."

"You love the uniforms because you picked them out," Emma teased as she slung her gear bag over her shoulder.

Lorelai pretended to be hurt. "Ouch. Whatever happened to solidarity?"

"Sorry Nana, but Papaw feeds us," Lori joked. "Besides, it's his turn to win."

"Ok, you two, scoot," Luke said to the two girls. "Get outta here before you're late."

"Going, going, gone!" Emma laughed as she and Lori left and headed to the softball field.

"Why must you question my authority in front of the girls?" Lorelai asked.

"What!" Luke laughed. "I'm not the one that questions authority! You do."

"Do not!"

"Oh? What about last week when Lana asked if she could go to that boy's birthday party? I said no and you under minded me and told her she could go."

"So there was that once…"

"Or the time you let Emma buy that two hundred dollar dress that she only wore once after I specifically said she couldn't because it was too expensive?"


"Or the time Will was supposed to help me replace the shingles on the roof and you told him he could go out with his friends? Oh! And I remember a certain someone knocking down the ladder and not telling me, stranding me on the roof for three hours."

"Ok, ok! I get it. Jeez, when are you gonna quit crying about that already?"

"When you build a time machine and tell Will to help me on the damn roof and then off the damn roof after you knocked over the ladder."

Just then, Travis Doose came running frantically into the diner. "Luke! Lorelai! Thank God you're here!" he said as he ran over to them. "I need your help."

"If it's help with getting you checked into a mental institution, I'm there!" Luke joked.

"I'm serious."

"The sad thing is, so is he," Lorelai laughed. "What can we do for you Travis?"

"Well as you may have heard, we've come up with a new town event…"

"Oh joy. Here we go!" Luke said rolling his eyes.

"Luke, be nice!" Lorelai scolded. "Go on Travis."

"Well, I'm having a slight problem. We have no performances," Travis said. "Everyone that signed up for the battle of the bands backed out. They just wanted the damn trophies."

"Well, duh."

"Well, it's no secret that the members if the Danes family are quite the performers…"

"What are you getting at Doose?" Luke asked.

"I need you guys to perform."


"What? Luke! Come on!"


"Just one song. A duet. The two of you. The town would love it!"

"Who here heard me say 'no'?"

"Luke, I don't think you understand…"

"No, I don't think you understand," Luke interrupted. "Your uncle is a pioneer in this town and you treated with no respect. The man wanted one more thing to leave his mark before he officially retired, but you couldn't let him have it."

"I didn't realize you were such a big fan of my uncle's."

"I'm not. I just hate you more."

Travis leaned over the counter and spoke in a loud whisper. "As the head town elder, you have a responsibility to the town!"

"Yes and this is not one of them."

"Travis, would you excuse us please?" Lorelai asked as she grabbed Luke by the arm and dragged him into the storage room.

"Lorelai, we can't do that now. The diner's full of people," Luke remarked.

"One, dirty. Two, that's not what I brought you in here for, but it gave me an idea for later…"

"Can we move this along please? Me, diner, customers."

"I think we should do it."

"What! Have you lost your mind? I'm not helping out with that own flip out."

"You already beat him. You have the title he wants. There's no reason to add insult to injury."


"Besides," Lorelai interrupted as she played with the buttons on Luke's flannel shirt. "I think you have a very sexy singing voice."

A smile crept across Luke's face. "Yeah?"

"Uh huh. It really turns me on. Come on Lukey. Let him have this one little, itty, bitty thing. I promise I'll make it worth your while."

Luke sighed. "Fine. He can have this one thing."

Lorelai gave him a quick kiss on the lips and pulled him back out to the diner. "I have to go, but Travis, I believe my husband has something to say to you." She turned to Luke. "Play nice. I love you." She kissed him again before heading toward the door.

Luke cleared his throat. "I know it's eating you up inside to know that Taylor decided to hand this prestigious position over to me, so I'm gonna be a nice guy and give you this one thing. My wife and I will perform one song." Lorelai mouthed a 'thank you' before leaving. "Now if you'd excuse me Mr. Doose, I have a diner full of customers to serve before watching my girls lead this town's softball team to another championship."

Richard sat at the top of the bleachers as he always did at the games. He liked to get a clear view of the field to be able to see everything. Lorelai and the rest of the family, on the other hand, sat as close to the field as they could. Luke liked to be close. Dean liked having him close. Dean was the softball team's coach and Luke would give him coaching tips during the game. But there was no Luke in sight today and Dean was frantically pacing in the bullpen.

Richard had accidentally scheduled an interview for his secretary position during the softball game. He left a note for his applicant on the door for her to meet him at the game, leaving very specific directions to where he would be (after all, he sat in the same spot at every game). A few innings, a very frantic Dean, and no Luke later a young woman made her way up the bleachers toward Richard.

"Richard Gilmore?" she called.

Richard pried his eyes away from the game. "Yes?" he asked, looking up at the woman. The woman held up the note left for her on the door. "Ah, yes. You must be my three o'clock appointment for the secretary job."

"Yes I am."

"Well, by all means, have a seat."

She smiled and sat beside Richard. "Mr. Gilmore, I just wanted to tell you that this is a great honor sir. You are a very respected man in the insurance business and…and it's just an honor to be sitting here with you with the chance to work for you."

"It's always nice to hear praise. Now, why don't we get right down to it then? I asked my daughter to go through the applications and she told me that yours stood out a great deal. I have review your application and it is very impressive young lady."

"Why thank you Mr. Gilmore."

"You have a lot of potential and I'd be happy to have you working for me."

"Are you serious?"


"Thank you Mr. Gilmore! You won't be sorry!"

"I certainly hope not," Richard laughed. "You'll start Monday morning. Our office space, although, is still being renovated so everything hasn't been organized just yet. My daughter will be throwing her husband a party of some sort and I am requesting your presence. You may bring whomever you choose. Now, do you have any questions?"

"Just one. No offense sir, but why did you ask me to meet you here?"

"Well, as an old man, I tend to lose track of things. I had completely forgot that today was the big game! My granddaughter and great granddaughter play for the Stars Hollow softball team."

"Oh? Which ones are they?"

"Danes and Huntzberger. The pitcher and shortstop. Oh. Good, my son in law finally showed up. He coaches the baseball team and the softball coach."

Her gaze followed to where he was pointing. It was him. They could hear Lorelai scolding Luke for being late and Luke responding, in his dull, monosyllable tone, that he had a packed diner he couldn't get away from. He kissed his wife and took a seat beside her.

"I…I gotta go," Richard's new secretary said as she stood and gathered her things.

"Oh. Alright then. It was a pleasure meeting you…" Richard trailed off when the woman's name escaped his memory. "I'm sorry, I've forgotten your name."

"April. My name is April Nardini."

Next time on "Breakaway": Luke and Lorelai take Richie to the hospital for his operation. Tristin taunts Rory about her pregnancy. Emma finds out that Will threatened Tyler and goes to confront her brother. But what she finds is something no one expected.

A/N: I know you're all probably throwing stuff at your screen and hating me right now for bringing April into the story, but just stay with me here. Let it play out. I've got plans for her and they may or may not be what you think. Ironically, my writer's block was suddenly gone on the night that the evil people in charge of Gilmore Girls decided to bring in Anna Nardini. Coincidence? Maybe. I'll have the update for the Broken Road up ASAP. Deleted scenes will be posted by the end of tomorrow. You may now return to your regularly scheduled program.