(A/N: Everything is the same up until Season 1, Episode 20. The Hayden dinner is about a month before this chapter.)
Category: Gilmore Girls
Pairings: Rory/?, Emily/Richard, Francine/Straub, Lorelai/Luke , Past Rory/Dean, and sort of a father daughter kind of thing with Rory and Max.
Warnings: Attack (very small – nothing real violent) and a Major character injury.
Summary: She was fragile. She was the Hayden and Gilmore heiress. She could break without her best friend. She was a fighter and a believer. She was Lorelai 'Rory' Leigh Gilmore-Hayden and she just wanted a fresh start from a devastating end. Warning: Main Character injury.
A Porcelain Doll
In the Mirror
Can't swallow our pride
Neither of us want to raise that flag
If we can't surrender then we both going to lose
What we had, Oh no
Singer: Jordin Sparks
"Mom, I'm taking the bus to Grandma's," Rory called out as she grabbed a book for the bus ride. Lorelai walked into the room eying her daughter.
"Are you sure you want to do this," Lorelai asked. "I mean you made the promise before all of this happened." Rory shook her head in response.
"I'm going to go," Rory answered. "If anything I will get something good out of this. I can distract myself and move forward." Lorelai nodded and pulled Rory into a hug.
"Love you kid," Lorelai said to Rory. "Have fun." Rory nodded and left the house and headed towards the bus stop. She sat down and began reading. As she sat there she could feel someone starring at the back of her head. Quickly she spun around and eyed the surrounding area where she noticed that in Doose's Market that Dean was starring at her. She was brought out of her daze when she heard the squeals of the bus rolling to a stop. She blinked and rushed onto the bus. Sitting in her seat Rory couldn't help but look out the window and noticed her image as she starred in the mirror. What had happened to her?
"Hey, Grandma can we get something to eat," Rory asked as they exited another store and the afternoon sun flooded in. Emily looked up from her bags.
"That's a great idea, Rory," Emily exclaimed. "Why don't we head to the club and eat there. After that we can go and see the stores in that area." Rory flashed her grandmother a quick smile.
"Sounds great, Grandma, " Rory agreed as slid into the car her grandmother had called for the day. Emily got into the car next. Emily chatted her off about the D.A.R as the car headed to the club. Walking into the club Rory couldn't help but notice how quiet it seemed. There weren't many people there which was strange because it was around lunch time. Resolving to think about it later Rory took a seat across from her grandmother. She picked up the menu and was looking at the soups when she heard her grandma suddenly drop the menu. Rory looked up confused.
"Grandma, what's wrong," Rory asked her concerned. It was then she noticed that her grandmother was starring over her shoulder. Rory turned around and she immediately knew why her grandmother was so shocked. "Francine, Straub – it's good to see you. How are you doing?" Rory noticed that both flinched when she called them by their first names.
"We are well, Lorelai," Francine answered. It was then she noticed that both Emily and Rory were getting up. "Where are you going?"
"We are leaving," Emily responded icily. "Come on Rory we'll go to that place you like so much." Rory nodded as she knew that Emily was talking about Luke's.
"But we wanted to talk to you Lorelai," Francine cried out in surprise. Rory spun around to face Francine.
"So much like when you could have for the past 16 years," Rory shot back. "Just like my father – you are in and out of my life so quickly that I can barely get a breath. You called me a mistake and you suddenly expect me to want to talk to you? Where were your manners when I was sitting there listening to you criticize the one person who put me above all? She could have easily left me behind that night and gone onto live a wonderful life but she left with me because she wanted me to be happy. She is first and foremost my best friend and then she is my mother. Yeah, on the rare occasion she has to pull the mom card but I know why she does it - because she cares!
You criticize my mother for being flighty and putting herself into a bad position – guess what it takes two to tango! Your son was as just as much as fault as to what happened all of those years ago as was she but she had taken responsibility and raised me on her own!
Meanwhile my father – your son – is off gallivanting around the world without a care in the world! He leaves behind a trail of broken promises to me – where was he when I played the strawberry in the big Fruit Play in Stars Hollow? In California because HE FELT LIKE IT! Who was there comforting me when my dad wasn't at my elementary graduation? MY MOTHER! Broken promises and never ending tears is all I get with the Hayden family! So excuse me if I don't feel like being in the same restaurant as you let alone talk to you!"
"We wanted to say sorry," Francine told her as Rory spun around to walk out. "After that dinner we realized the stupidity of all we had said."
"Why did it take so long to say sorry," Rory demanded. "If you figured this out after the dinner, why did it take a month?" Francine looked distinctly uncomfortable as did Emily, Rory noticed.
"You wouldn't give her any of our information," Rory realized. "It wasn't by chance that we were at the club on the same day as the Hayden's, was it? You set this up so that it would be on your terms. You wanted me to stay mad at them so that you and Grandpa could keep me to yourselves. You knew I wouldn't give them any chance." Rory couldn't help the laughter that escaped her as she collapsed on the ground.
"All four of you have been acting like children – it's amazing I didn't see it sooner! You're playing tug of war! All four of you are my grandparents and I won't be playing favorites. The Gilmore's have Friday night dinners so I'll give the Hayden's Sunday lunch. Once a month I will go shopping with Grandma Francine and Grandma Emily. Whether it is all three of us together or separate is up to you two. Each month I will also spend time with each Grandfather doing whatever we choose too. That sound good?" Emily looked a little hesitant but nodded her agreement along with Straub and Francine.
"Good. Now you promised we could go to Luke's," Rory reminded her grandmother. "We could even Kim's Antique's while we are there." Emily nodded and then they left.
"Luke," Rory called out as soon as she was seated. Luke's head snapped up from fixing the toaster. Jess smirked at her and Rory rolled her eyes. Emily was looking at the menu. "Two coffees please." Luke nodded and placed two steaming hot coffees, one in front of Rory and the other in front of Emily.
"Here are your liquid deaths," Luke grunted. "Are you two ready to order?" Rory nodded as did Emily.
"Caesar salad with dressing," Emily ordered. Luke nodded.
"Thousand Island, right," Luke confirmed. Emily nodded and put the menu back.
"I'll have a cheeseburger, chili fries, and a piece of the Oreo pie," Rory informed Luke. He nodded and went back to make the orders. The diner was quiet with the exception of the noise Luke was making.
"You're not going to lose me too, Grandma," Rory quietly informed her. The only indication that Emily had heard was a slight smile on Emily's face.
"Are you going to get back with Dean," Lane asked as they sit in the kitchen. In the background Emily could be heard arguing with Mrs. Kim about a piece of furniture. Rory shook her head.
"No," Rory answered. "It took me some time but I realized that if Dean truly loved me he wouldn't have pressured me to say it back until I was ready. Dean kind of reminds me of a little child who didn't get his way and is throwing a tantrum to get it." Lane starred at her friend in shock.
"Wow, I never thought of it that way," Lane said amazed. Lane squirmed in her chair. "Listen, Rory – you know how Dean and I have a couple of classes together?" Rory nodded. "Well Dean and I got paired up for a science project and he is coming over for the project."
"That's cool," Rory said with a shrug. "A least you don't have someone who has no idea what they are doing." Lane let out a sigh of relief.
"Is it really cool," Lane tentatively asked. Rory nodded.
"Yeah," Rory answered as she heard her grandmother call for her. "I'll come by tomorrow before lunch at the Grandparents." Lane nodded and Rory waved goodbye. As Rory was leaving when Mrs. Kim stopped her.
"You have a fine family," Mrs. Kim told Rory. "Don't forget it." Rory nodded.
"I won't," Rory responded and left. Mrs. Kim gave herself a satisfied nod and then went back to work.
"Hey Mom," Rory greeted as she walked into the living room.
"Hey kiddo," Lorelai responded. "How was the shopping?"
"Pretty good," Rory said as she held up about 10 of the many bags she had. "There is more coming in." Rory headed to room to put away the bags. She went back and forth several times before she got all 40 bags into her room. Rory went into the living room and collapsed onto the couch next to her mother. She closed her eyes for a moment and then went to the front door and said goodbye to her grandmother.
"So how are you doing," Lorelai asked when Rory sat next to her on the couch. Rory gave her mother a small smile.
"Pretty good," Rory answered. "You won't believe what happened at lunch today."
"Oh really," Lorelai responded. "Did my mother dance the Macarena on top of the table and then sing while dancing to Twist and Shout next?" Rory snorted.
"I'll tell you over dinner," Rory told her mother as she stood to get her jacket. "I'm going to go Doose's and get some junk food. Call out for pizza and get coffee from Luke's."
"He's working today," Lorelai informed her softly. Rory nodded in acknowledgment.
"I know," Rory said. Lorelai's eyes widened in surprise and then understanding. Rory gave her a small smile before she pulled on her jacket. She place her cell phone in her front pants pocket instead of in her jacket like she normally did.
"I shouldn't be more then 20 minutes," Rory told her mother. "If I am longer come save me from Taylor." Lorelai gave a grin.
"Will do," Lorelai assured her. Rory waved at her mother and then headed to the market. It didn't take her long to get there. Once inside she picked up a basket and started scouring the store for junk food. She was contemplating what kind of Twizzlers to get when a hand suddenly clamped down on her mouth. Instinct kicked on in and she bit down on the hand and kneed the assailant. As Rory moved away she noticed that it was Dean.
"What were you thinking," Rory yelled at him drawing the attention of Taylor who was at the cash register. "You don't just sneak up behind someone and cover their mouth and expect them to do nothing!"
"I wanted to surprise you," Dean managed. He was bent over. Rory opened her mouth to yell at him again but she never got the chance as he pushed her against the shelf and kissed her. Disgusted Rory pushed against him but Dean didn't budge. He just keep kissing her. Finally Rory kneed him yet again.
"Don't you get it," Rory demanded. "We are through. You tell me that you love me and then expect me to say it back right then? I am not a puppet who will do what you say! If you had truly loved me then you would have waited for me to be ready instead of throwing a tantrum and running off! If you love me as you say you do then just let me go." With that Rory grabbed a bag of strawberry Twizzlers and headed to check out where Taylor stood shocked.
"So how is Rory doing," Luke asked as Lorelai sat in the diner waiting for what she ordered to be done.
"She is actually doing pretty good," Lorelai said with a slight smile. "She is over at Doose's right now informing Dean that she wants nothing more to do with him."
"Really," Luke asked disbelieving. Lorelai nodded. "Because it looks to me like she just kneed him." Lorelai spun around and rushed out of the diner and over to Doose's. She walked in just as she saw Dean get kneed again for trying to forcefully kiss her. She watched Rory yell at Dean and then grab a bag of Twizzlers before heading over to a shocked Taylor to check out.
"So, what is it that you wanted to tell me," Lorelai asked as they laid out the food for a movie night.
"Well Grandma and I went to the club for lunch," Rory informed her mother. Lorelai made a face. "We were sitting looking at the menu's when I hear Grandma drop the menu so I look up and see her starring over my shoulder. I turn around and see none other the Francine and Straub Hayden in the flesh!"
"No way," Lorelai uttered. Rory nodded.
"Yes way," Rory continued. "So I greeted them as Grandma and I got up to leave. Francine responds to my question and then asks where Grandma and I are going. Grandma tells them that we are leaving and then informs me that we would be going to Luke's for lunch instead. Then to my surprise Francine informs me that they wanted to talk."
"Really," Lorelai asked shocked. Rory nodded.
"When she said she wanted to talk I flipped out," Rory continued sheepishly. "Just as I was turning to leave Francine informs me that they wanted to apologize. When I asked her why it took a month for that to happen - she said they figured it out after the dinner – I found out that Grandma wouldn't give them out information and that us meeting them at the club was a total setup by Emily Gilmore."
"No way," Lorelai said convinced.
"Yes way," Rory responded. "After I basically called them children I informed them that I would have no favorites. I set up lunch on Sunday with the Hayden's. Then I set up a shopping day with ether both Grandma's at a time or at two different times. From there I then informed them I would do something with the Grandfather's once a month as well. After that I reminded her that she promised that we would go to Luke's and then reminded her that we could go to Kim's Antique's while we were already here. We then went to Luke's and Kim's Antique's. For the rest of the day we went shopping."
"So, Sunday lunch with the Hayden's," Lorelai processed. Rory nodded. "Do I have to go?"
"Mom," Rory exclaimed in surprise.