Title: Longing With a Cherry Tomato on Top | Chapter Three | A Russian Class Conspiracy

Author: Nate

Pairing: Paris/Rory, Paris POV

Inspired by: From past subtext from the last half of season two and the first half of season three with many spoilers from those episodes. This chapter of the series however is all from my own ideas, we will get back into the show in the near future.

Rating: R (swearing, naughty femslash thoughts)

Disclaimer: Don't own GG or profit from the show, that would be Warner Bros. Television and Dorothy Parker Drank Here Productions. War and Peace is in the public domain, despite the pleas from every teenager in America to burn the book or destroy all prints of the crappy six-hour 'epic' waste of film made from it. If you ever see anyone watching or reading Tolstoy voluntarily, please seek help for them immediately ;).

Summary: Things start to progress slowly as Paris daydreams about new possibilities brought up by Rory in the middle of a mind-numbing class she hates.

Archiving: GilmoreGirlsSlash, aff.net and ff.net. Anywhere else ask first.

Author's Notes: I'll only be making a small note since I finally got all my thanks out in chapter two. For those who reviewed, thank you for the encouragement (or criticism), and to my beta readers Raven and Cinnamon, thanks so much for all of your help, this story wouldn't be back on the fast track without you girls. Thank you to President Bush for pre-empting American Idol Tuesday evening, and giving this week's great GG episode the best ratings in a while.

And if you're a ff.net'er still hoping that somehow one of the members of Rory's boy harem will save her from (gasp!) kissing a girl, they aren't going to make it, sorry to disappoint. Heed the FEMSLASH warnings I've left throughout the story and just don't read if you're not into girls interested in girls.

Finally, I doubt that she'll read this because it's outside her regular fandom, but this chapter is dedicated to Kitty from the Gilmore Girls Fanforum board. Sadly, she lost her kind and loving husband Kevin, and another passenger was involved in an accident triggered by a drunk driver on his way to work Easter Sunday morning. He had just come home from a tour of duty in the Middle East a few months ago, and they were about to move into new housing with their daughters, 1 year-old Alexis and almost 4 year-old Karissa when his life was tragically cut short in a cruel and senseless act on such a holy holiday. Keep them in your prayers to whatever deity you follow, and I hope Kitty, the girls and the rest of her family will survive this strong. She's a true board mother and I know that her love is looking down from heaven right now and keeping her and her children's spirits up.

Feeback: Please use Feedback Form

September 25, 2000 is a day that's still strong in my memory to this day. Though it started out with my normal routine of shower, dress, eat and drive, by about 7:35 in the morning when I arrived at Chilton, there was a buzz going through the halls that someone new was about to come in. At first I thought nothing of this new student because it was made clear that they were a scholarship case, probably out after a half-semester of the mind-killing curriculum only a select few can handle. Another person to ignore, I thought to myself as I got out all my books.

And then Madeline shocked me to my core when I she relayed more details about the new kid.

"She's Rory Gilmore, of the Chatham Drive Gilmores," she told me, animated and smiling about the new gossip she could spread. "Back in 1984 apparently her mother Lorelai was discovered as pregnant at sixteen because of her boyfriend Christopher Hayden, and it was the biggest scandal of the decade up to that point in Hartford! A year later Lorelai had fled to Stars Hollow in shame, and raised her as a normal middle-class girl, earning  her way here eventually through her drive to get into Harvard. Talk is though Miss Gilmore couldn't afford the tuition and went to her 'rents for help. Thus, welcome Lorelai 'Rory' Leigh Gilmore, who has a 3.95 GPA coming in."

I honestly was shaken as Madeline told me all about Rory. But as quickly as my emotions were turned around upon learning I had real competition for the first time; it was time to go back to work. I became an iron bitch again and despite all that Rory tried to dent my armor, from setting me up with Tristan to answering questions before my hand could get higher than hers, she couldn't get any headway. The whole PJ Harvey fiasco was the straw that I thought would break the camel's back for her. She wouldn't try again if I made it clear we'd never be friends, or more than that.

But when I analyze that first year and a half after having so much time to think it over, I realize that the like for Rory was always there, lurking inside all along. I was hiding it behind an illusion that the only one I could ever love was Tristan, and if any person took him away from me I'd never feel loved again. I had to have him, my first male friend, the boy who pulled my pigtails in first grade and played Prince Charming to my Cinderella during the 1992 Chilton Country Day talent show.

However, after that night of studying that turned into attending a Bangles concert thanks to Lorelai, I started having very confused thoughts about my rival. While Madeline and Louise flirted with those boys, we just sat there, transfixed to the music and the meanings within. As Louise and Madeline decided to hit that party with the spiked lemonade, they gave me the biggest out ever. I didn't have to be Rory's friend, I could just be reckless with them rather than stay with the goody-goody listening to 80s music.

I didn't even hesitate to say no however, and from the moment I said the words, I couldn't figure out why. All I knew was that Rory was sitting next to me, and the aroma of her body heat was so intoxicating that I didn't want to replace that scent with anything male as long as I could hold onto it. And then as they left, came the image of her and I in my mind, dancing hand in hand intimately to the song being played. It was just a flash and I could've been easily freaked and disturbed by it, but I wasn't. I willed it further as I sat in that seat, Rory futilely arguing against my friends doing something that could get them on the New York Post's front page, and just became transfixed as my mind image danced with Rory's, and we discussed something as complex as whether Pluto should really be a planet or just a glorified Neptunian moon.

And with that, I admitted that Eternal Flame was my favorite song in the world to Rory. She gave me an odd look and went back to watching the concert, but from then on, the crush built up. I couldn't show it, but I was jealous of her not because she was possibly (but didn't as I later learned, to my chagrin) going out with Tristan because I liked him too, but that she was going out with him because I liked her. Thus came the summer of silence, with me shutting her out and living in a land of denial. I surrounded my thoughts with anything Tristan trying to get me and Rory slow dancing pushed out of my mind, but by September and the time she was on the Franklin staff, I slowly started backing off and began liking Rory again on the outside.

Maybe, just maybe though, the reason Tristan decided to turn on all of us was a swift kick in my ass from God. Rapidly, the glorified Prince Charming image from second grade I had kept for so long was fading away before my eyes, and I was finally able to see him the way the rest of the students did; as a manipulating boy who kept a swooning me on his hook as he uncorked about 47.66% of the girls in my same class. I'm only thankful Rory saw through him from day one and didn't go any further with him than some 'tortured soul' piano bench kiss during one of Madeline's many soirees.

Yes, I saw that kiss. The wonders of one those pop-up sold X-10 black and white wireless cameras connected to a VCR set up in a servant's quarters made sure that buss was permanently recorded for all to see, as Madeline gave it to me the day after the party and told me to do whatever I wanted with it so I could ruin Rory's reputation. But all I saw was pain in her eyes that night; that she was looking for anything to distract her from the fact that her first love had ended the relationship because he was a stubborn ass who needed to be told he was loved by her at a certain point in the relationship. She clearly had no heart to kiss Tristan and was trying to use it as a coping mechanism, but it failed and she ran out, wanting to cry out the anguish of being dumped by a boy who wanted her to speak words she was far from ready to utter.

So instead, I let Madeline know that she was not to copy the tape or let anyone know this had happened. To make sure of that, I threw the master copy down the incineration chute at the Manor in front of the eyes of my friends, shocking them and keeping them as puzzled into my motives for Rory.

It was only after Tristan was thrown out of Chilton minutes before the project, and I was pushed into the spotlight as an emergency Romeo that I finally confronted my building feelings for Rory. And I really looked at her for the first time.

Why did her mother have to be a talented seamstress? Why did the neckline of that pesky Juliet dress have to expose so much porcelain skin in front of me and her headwear have to make her so gosh-darned adorable? Why does she have the most beautiful and enchanting eyes that look like sapphires and hypnotized me into doing whatever she wanted? And why was I suddenly getting this evil little voice in my head telling me, Oh yes Paris, you want to rehearse that kiss with Rory so bad! Practice does make perfect and you'll only have one shot to pull it off!

Boy she looked cute in that costume. But then I remembered that yes this was a graded project and we better be pitch-perfect, lest I lose a letter grade after such a shock of losing my main player from the project. Oh, and there was that little problem named Dean out in the crowd, and I'm sure his lesbian fantasies don't go much beyond the Man Show definition of lust, meaning I'm too homely to be imagined in one.

So I didn't kiss her, preferring instead to go with a fake little move learned well from Louise before I 'died' by laying my head against her chest. It still meant I had to breathe in her scent though. And this time, she smelled like baby powder, probably because she had to put it on all over before she could slide into that tight, tight dress with a cinched-up corset piece.

Later on that night in bed, I finally let my crush on Tristan go, and for the first time my mind was free to go beyond the bounds of me and Rory dancing to Eternal Flame into what I can only describe as beautiful. As I came with her scent in the forefront and her face in my thoughts, that was the evening I swore that I couldn't love a boy again. It was all Rory from then on.

Then...oh my God, I'm being called on to answer a question! Shit! I hate this class, why did I have to be talked into taking Russian Novelists and Their Works 401 by my stupid guidance counselor? It's not as if I'll ever use this crap in my life, and any of Leo Tolstoy's works make much better doorstops or stepstools than actual good works of fiction! War and Peace wastes so many wonderful trees; you have to weep when you realize how many good logs in Oregon were sacrificed to make paper for that horridly boring piece of literature!

Thank goodness Rory's also in this class, but she's only taking it for the English requirement to get a merit award on her diploma. I've seen her with the Cliff Notes to every book we've read in this class, and I can tell she's not reading it on the ride into Chilton because she struggles with the questions raised by the teacher as much as me.

Hurriedly, I construct a half-ass yet complex answer that should have him singing the praises of my question-answering abilities, and sure enough, he takes the bait. I won't be called on again today and I can go back to thinking about how things with Rory are starting to change for the better.

Besides our lunchtime meetings, she's taken to spending much more time with me than she did last year. Gone is the nervous small-town girl looking for any praise she can muster while not damaging the way I shine with Chilton faculty, and in her place is this confident woman who's not making me regret making her my cohort at the paper and in student government one bit. She's suggesting articles and pieces that are changing the face of the Franklin from a dull, dry broadsheet that seems to only brighten up when the sports teams are winning, to a paper that's becoming full of life and will look awesome on both of our transcripts once the Harvard admissions board looks at them. I may be the editor in name, but without her help I'd still be fretting about my 'paper legacy' once I graduate.

We finally managed to eradicate the supper club and unhip soft drink ads of old that took up most of the ad space in the paper, and in their place elaborate ads for the hottest teen clubs and hangouts along the I-91 corridor along with bank and .com ads, pumping more money and ad revenue into the paper than I could've ever dreamed of. With her help we've been able to replace the aging 60 year-old press donated from Yale's Daily News thirty years ago, and replace it our own slick new model able to print full-color photography on the front pages. The Oppenheimer endowment we won from the 'Rory Curtain' story helped us get the latest and greatest in digital cameras, and just might make that darkroom we have now a glorified closet in a few years.

And after making that fine enlightened point of why I like Rory being around me, I'm going to purgatory when I pass on though, because I'm internally giddy that she finally ditched the ugly blue hose a few days ago. She's wearing boring white crew socks beneath her saddle shoes that only go a quarter up her shins, and I'm finding myself thinking seriously about 'accidentally' brushing up against her legs in one of the science classes I sit next to her in where a big black table-like desk covers up the fact I'm trying to coax her shoes off and get that dream footsie game started.

Yes, I'm a dork. Get used to it, because the little things about Rory are starting to bunch up together like a bee colony and I'm starting to think she's giving me clues herself as to what she thinks about me.

They started coming on strong during gym class last Wednesday. Because Rory and I aren't that wild about physical activity usually we slog through the class hoping for an ankle strain that would put each of us in the bleachers for an inordinate amount of time. We wear the school-issued physical education uniforms reluctantly and both puzzle how we can get a constitutional amendment banning compulsory gym class through if we ever get into politics.

Last week we had our field hockey unit, which meant bumps and scratches as I chased some stupid ball around a muddy athletic field with a curved stick while preventing another person from taking the ball away and putting it in their own team's net. Rory and I were picked last for our respective teams, a well deserved honor since the only exercise she and I look forward to is putting a #2 pencil to a Scantron form. We became opposing forwards, and I thought that we'd just spend the next hour having a glorified jog around the athletic field, occasionally passing the ball and scrimmaging for possession before we passed it back.

About ten minutes in though, I noticed that we were right in the middle of the action, and that Rory and I were suddenly putting the same passion into this game as we do a Latin exam. She was uncharacteristically athletic and kept asking for her team to pass her the ball so she could challenge me to a shot on goal. The adrenaline of competition kicked in, and I brought on my own passion of wanting to kick her ass. Our sticks started clashing together at every possession opportunity, and before we knew it, we had collided with each other quite a few times, ruining our personal records of not having to bring our gym clothes home to wash them, about three months each.

The other players on my team started passing me the ball, and I had to think fast as that brunette hellfire came bashing against me in order to dislodge the ball. Suddenly I was in a very completive game in something I despised with the girl I like, and I was enjoying it!

I felt the weight of mud on the bottom of my sneakers as the game went on and Rory kept trying to challenge me when the ball was passed over so I could take a shot. I didn't know what brought on this new flurry of competition, but I knew that I wanted more. I took shots on goal whenever I was called on to take one, and would pump my fist in the air and yelp happily whenever it got past the keeper. My heart thudded against my chest and I felt my whole body excite when I made a shot. Rory would look dejected, but then grit her teeth and growl, as if daring me to bring it on. Within about twenty minutes she had taken her hair out of a Lorelai-created braid that made her look cute when she left for school that day, but was plainly bothering as she played an aggressive game of field hockey, she looked so untamed and beautiful in such heated competition.

It didn't seem like she was out for blood, but rather just wanted to have fun for once in gym class. She took her own shots and gloated when she made a goal, and I was forced to put the same dejected look on my face before telling her with my emotions to bring it on again. And we brought it on so much I thought the gym teacher was going to have ring a bell and tell us to go back to our corners!

Rory would try to stop me no matter what it took whenever I had possession of the ball, be it tackling me and making my body tumble to the ground, or grab at my gym shorts or shirt and pushing me aside, trying to make it look like a legal trip. Whenever she would handle me roughly, I'd get this flash in my brain of her doing the same thing in a bed, and that made even more adrenaline flow down. I countered her fire with fire, and started playing more aggressively within the rules. I wasn't going to sit this game out in the penalty box, and Rory looked like she wanted to play the whole game too! I'm sure everyone could notice our sudden spurt of wanting to play, but I could've cared less that day. Also very noticeable was the fact that my bra was having a very hard time keeping my breasts flat and unnoticeable as they usually were. My nipples became erect as the game went on, and suddenly I felt very naked to Rory since I went with a tight gym shirt, not really caring when I bought it whether it would show off my goods or not.

I couldn't believe the effect she was having on me, and as I noticed her own small and pert tits harden against her shirt, I became distracted. I realized then I had the ball and Rory was coming at me like a freight train wanting it all to herself. As I came to back into the real world I tried to evade her, but I was a little too late pulling my trigger. She crashed, hard into me, and I felt her skull bash right into mine and her starting to weigh down on me as we tumbled down to the soft, muddy turf below. My ass cushioned the fall, and as I came back to, time seemed to slow down.

My eyes drifted up towards her face, and I wanted to ask what demon had gotten into her body to turn her from innocent to bitch on wheels. But I stayed quiet as my five senses made hay of the situation. Touch was going into overdrive from the fact her pelvis was right up against mine so close, and her arms were tangled across my front. Smell was gone to the world as her flowery deodorant had faded away and was replaced with this animalistic smell of sweat that made me clench my teeth together, trying to prevent myself from closing the distance between our mouths so unexpectedly. My ears could hear the pounding of my own heartbeat, sped up to an insane level, along with Rory's own mix of grunting and breathing, and the brushing of our sopping wet cotton gym clothes together.

Taste...thankfully not blood from a dislodged tooth, but instead my gaping maw was open as a couple of drops of perspiration dropped down from her chin and into my mouth. Fuck, even her sweat tasted divine!

It was sight that really got my attention though. Above me, the usually clean girl I respected for being a worthy competitor was still so beautiful; her crystalline blue eyes still clear despite the situation we were in. I seemed to bring my vision down from there and noticed the position we had crashed into each other in. Her left thigh was right against my groin, moving my gym shorts up just enough that I felt a sizable amount of cool wind between my shorts and underwear, and of course her leg. I could see just slightly down her t-shirt, which was coming apart at the seams from such a quick burst of strenuous activity. Pulling against the back of it when we scrimmaged seemed to have made the front droop down, and I could see what lay beneath it quite clearly. Not much cleavage from the side view, but now I could confirm that she wore a light blue sports bra during gym class. I felt like such a pervert gazing at her this way, and didn't know what to say as the moment ended and time sped back up to regular, she was getting back up and offering her hand to me.

"Uh, sorry Paris," she said, nervously. "I guess I got a little too into the action there." She helped me back up, and I was too startled to call her on the sudden burst of energy she had that day.

"It's OK Rory, really. You're pretty good at this game." I smiled and rose to my feet, wondering if we'd knock into each other again.

"You're not too bad yourself Gellar," she told me back, and we went back to being stoic and silent for the rest of it. We calmed down a little from there and finished the game relatively action-free, letting the other students have shots at the goal.

By the time it had ended with her team inching out a 9-8 victory, my gym socks were a deep dark brown, my face was caked in a mix of perspiration and dirt, and I was so dirty from all that physical activity that I was sure to get a scolding from Francisca when I got home that day. I also could see there was a little spot of blood settling on one of the shoulders of my shirt, I was pretty scratched up from the whole thing. The shower couldn't be avoided today, and Rory was going to be in it with me.

As the teacher congratulated me and Rory on finally participating in such a heated way, I looked over to her and shook her hand. I never thought I'd swoon from such a simple expression of sportsmanship, but she was definitely trying to prove to me she could be competitive and I had to catch up to her. And it's completely true too. I might be the one with the monster crush on her, but she held all the cards. If she didn't like me it wasn't ever going to happen, but if I kept up with her, there was at least a slight shot of hope.

I went back into the locker room and took off my gym clothes in the stall I usually change in, noting that even my lingerie had suffered from the effects of such strenuous activity. I never had bothered with a sports bra before, and after that game it was clear that I needed one since the underwire from one of the cups had torn out of the seam and was digging wicked hard into the bottom of my breast, a $35 bra at that. And yes, my mother is insane for trying to compress my chest into something flatter than an airport runway, so I certainly didn't mind going without the rest of the day. I took it off and threw it into my messenger bag, got out of my underwear and dreaded the shower ahead. I left the safety of my little stall wearing just a towel and carrying a bottle of combined shampoo/body wash I bought at the tanning salon (the school stuff is just dreadful on my hair and itchy), and was glad to see that almost all the girls had finished their showers already. Maybe that meant Rory was already on her way to class...

I put my towel on the rack outside the shower room and navigated the maze of stalls until I came upon one where I thought I'd get relative privacy, and started washing up. I turned the hot spray on heavy and put all the thoughts of that field hockey game out of my head as I washed my hair and soaped up my upper torso, though glad Rory was aggressive that day, hoping that it was just an exception.

I'm about to wash lower down, when suddenly I hear a familiar voice echoing behind me. I turn around, and the shower got a little more interesting.

There's my girl Rory, standing stunned, nude and all muddied up as she discovers that I'm taking a shower with her. Her hair is a mess and I see a slight scratch running lengthwise along her ankles, probably from my hockey stick. I try to block out her nude state as best as I can as she greets me, but I can't help but be distracted by her form. She seemed a little nervous as she set her shampoo and soap down on the shelf in front of her stall, and her fingers seemed like they wanted to be playing with a non-existent sweater cuff, something that always clues me into her timid moods.

"Hey Par," she says, very casually, but in a tone of voice where she tries to hide her distracted state. I note the fact my name has been cut down to one syllable very deliberately and listen to what she says next. "Got a little dirty there, eh?"

"Well I certainly wasn't expecting it, what got into you today Gilmore?" I answer back, sort of bitterly but laughing all the same. Yes, dull conversation is proven to kill any sexual mood, and many girls share a shower stall everyday. I'm not looking down at her; I'm concentrating on her face. Honestly!

"I don't know, I get this sudden urge sometimes to be athletic, and it seemed today was the day. It is mid-semester and I better show that I am somewhat athletic." Her nose wrinkles up and she sniffs herself. "Next time though I better put on some heavy-duty deodorant, I don't think this stuff works."

I turn around and focus on the front nozzle of my shower as I resume trying to shower without distractions. "I think you mean next time warn me before you decide to turn into Chris Chellios, geeze you were rough today! I wonder why you never got on a sports team here, when you get that adrenaline pumping it pumps hard!"

We get into a good conversation as the dirt from the day is cleaned off of each of us about athletics, and though we're usually ambivalent about them, she shares her love for football (Lorelai turned her onto the fact that Brett Farve is a pretty hot guy for someone who gets paid millions of dollars to throw a ball around for an hour), while I admit I have a soft spot for hockey, and it's more than just the guys, the strategy really does something for me. I think I'm still one of the few Harfordians who still follow the Hurricanes after they ended their run as the Hartford Whalers. We get into the pros and cons of each sport, and despite our state of nudeness, don't seem to really be flustered at all. Maybe that was a good sign.

I couldn't help but start to feel blood start to flow down heavy towards the area below my abdomen though. It felt so odd to be sharing such a casual shower with the girl I liked and not have anything be so weird. Sure she seemed to be a little nervous around me, but I couldn't help but notice her sidelong glances towards my chest out of the corner of my right eye. The competition was still going on according to my nerves, and the steamy hot water hadn't helped to simmer down any part of my body that could be excited. I was feeling so aroused that my nipples seemed to peak, and as I ran the bar of soap against one of them, felt that it was hard and that any sudden touch would cause me to start moaning in pleasure right then and there.

She was washing herself and distracted with her dirty arms, so I got a quick glance in to store in my fantasy memory banks. Rory is just a smidge taller than me; about four inches and I have to admire her slim classical Twiggy-ish figure. Her breasts aren't too large nor too small, and the tips of her nipples look so perfect, I can tell that field hockey game had the same effect on her body.

OK fine, I was blatantly staring down below the face line I set for myself! And I thought I could get through this shower pretty much scot-free. She was hardly noticing however, at least from what I thought. Rory finished up, and I saw her turning around. I brought my focus back up to her face quickly and was hoping for the conversation to resume where it had left off.

Instead, she threw me for a curve with a question that was out of character for her usually innocent guise, and right out of left field.

"Paris," she asks in the damned puppy-dog voice she's perfected, "Do you think I'm too flat?"

The only thing I'm thinking after that? Oh Dear God, is she trying to kill me?! I didn't expect her to ask me (or anyone else) that in a million years, and though our friendship is getting to the point she and her hometown friend Lane are at, I have no idea what to tell her in an appropriate way! If I wasn't shy I sure would've given her a little show and tell about what I really thought about her chest, but that didn't seem to be the best idea. Unlike the gym teachers from those bad 70s high school movies where unsupervised girl's locker room scenes were the norm, the gym teachers keep a close eye on showers here. They don't have cameras up or watch us in the act, but if we take too long, the teachers wouldn't hesitate to shut off the water and dampen any ideas I would've had in mind for Rory. We were already pushing four minutes with the end of class bell ringing in one more, and usually it takes me just five to get a quick enough spritz of water to be considered a shower, change into my uniform and start preparing for the next class.

All I knew was that I was turning towards her and she was looking like she really wanted to know the answer. I psyche myself up and think, maybe she wants to know if Dean has enough of a handful before they do it.

Yeah right, my conscious answers back. Knowing Caveman he probably goes right for dessert and avoids the main course and appetizers. I snort out a laugh at my internal comeback and suddenly Rory covers herself up from me.

"I thought I didn't have enough, sorry to have--" she starts cutting herself down, frowning before I interrupt her suddenly, just going off on a tangent.

"No, no, no, I was laughing because of how absurd the question was!" I didn't even have to look at her because I've seen her naked many times in the shower at school, but never like this before. It seemed like such a blatant question, but she had to have her body image propped up again. "Honestly Gilmore, you're fine, right in the middle, you have enough there to make anyone jealous."

"But you have a lot more than me," she whined, pointing right at my breasts. I looked down at myself mortified, and felt like I had to end the conversation before it became a lot more personal than it had already. Her eyes seemed to be transfixed on my chest, and though in another world entirely where she knew how I felt it would've turned me on, now it just seemed to dampen every sexual feeling I was having. She wasn't being shy about telling me I had more than her, and it made my firm up like a deer in the headlights.

I wanted to answer her, but I couldn't. I blanked out, and she shook my shoulder, trying to get me to answer her coherently. Instead I was mortified, and not knowing her intentions, I had to get out of there before all my secrets would crumble.

So I evaded the loaded statement. "Umm...uh-huh, that's genetics," I told her nervously, my face brought down in shame. "I have to go, I'll see you at the Franklin later." I cut out of the shower as fast as I could, changed back into my uniform and fled the locker room before Rory could catch up with me, red as a kickball. Of course she turned the breast question on me, how couldn't I have expected that?

After the whole shower incident we seemed to become silent friends again. That afternoon at the Franklin was pretty much the status quo, and when everyone was out of the room except for me, Rory and Ms. Peters, we didn't even broach it, focusing on the last touches for the week's edition before we went to press. Rory tried to bring up the topic on the way home, but I distracted her by claiming a good song was on the radio and turned it up.

Unfortunately it was All-Star by Smash Mouth, the soundtrack to every 'hip' television ad since 1999. Note to self, deport that band whenever I become president.

So for the next few days I avoided her once again, and told her I was too tired to make the drive to Stars Hollow after our government and paper work ended, so she took the bus home. Friday evening though, ended with a loud argument in the student conference room where we shouted at each other until our throats were raw about how we closed up on each other when we strayed out of our comfort zones. At the climax of the argument, she called me a 'prude' for not going further into my answer in the shower. Angered, I shot back with something I regretted the moment I said it.

"I might be a prude, but at least I don't have a chastity electric fence around my person preventing my fucking boyfriend from doing any more than heavy petting, Mary Stone!!"

Rory got this wounded look on her face like she was punched in the gut, and before I could catch up and apologize to her for using a prim 1950's sitcom character as a slur against her virginity, she had slammed the door in my face and stomped out to the bus stop just in time for the 5:50 to pull in the front circular drive. I refused to chase after her, but immediately left a message on her cell saying sorry for my behavior. No matter, she had shut me out for the next day and a half. Lorelai would pick up the phone and I'd ask to speak with Rory, but she was 'busy' whenever I called.

I spent all of Saturday then with a pool of acid down in my stomach, studying to no avail. This time I had said the wrong thing, I knew how Rory felt about her virginity, it was an iffy subject with her. She never said anything about it to me or anyone else because she was under the impression from her own mother that doing anything before she graduated college would be indicated as being a failure in her family. By pushing it though, I'd just put a further gulf between feelings that were starting to become known during that gym class.

I got out the bottle of wine from the bottom drawer of the desk, still fermenting in its 48 year prison, waiting for me to release its unique bouquet and pour it into the two flutes. It was starting to feel like the Tristan situation all over again, and I didn't know if I could rebuild a truce with her again.

There was no choice in the matter. I could sit there and have Rory ignore me for the rest of our time at Chilton, or I could go to Stars Hollow and settle things down. Despite the clock on the computer reading four in the morning on a Sunday morning, I had to take care of what I wrought. So I jumped in the car and took the Cross Parkway down to the Hollow, arriving at Rory's house just after 4:30. I made my way onto the porch and knocked on her bedroom window off to the side of the house, my face looking worse for the wear from all the fretting I did after I made the Mary Stone crack.

Of course she was pissed when I woke her up. And she had every reason in the world to slam the window right down on my fingers after my cruel treatment of her. But after her tired "What the hell do you want Gellar, you made it pretty clear I wasn't a sexual being yesterday!", I jumped right in and ad-libbed everything I had to say.

"Can I come in, please?" I asked with my eyes wide and pleading, and though leery, she opened the window all the way so I could crawl in and take a seat at her desk. She held her Colonel Clucker by its made-of tag, and was barely awake when she asked me why I'd say such things.

"Rory, you know how I think, right? You get too close to me and I have to shut down emotionally and act like a robot without feelings."

She nodded, and I went on.

"In the days pre-Tristan leaving for NC, there wasn't ever any effort on my part to see your side of the story Gilmore, I would've taken the assumption express until my argument ran out of steam and off the broken bridge into the gulch. But now, you're one of my closest friends, and I shut you down cold on Wednesday in that shower stall, leading to this domino effect which left you pissed off and angry at me. I'm done playing those games with you, and all yesterday all I could think was," I started sniffling, "I fucked up things, Florida-election style. I told you that you were playing with the emotions of boys and never intending to do anything with them without any proof to back it up, when you just have these strict morals and rules for getting to you more closely than Lane. And for the first time since I knew you, I scolded myself. I went way too far out of my way trying to avoid your question, and almost ended up squelching one of the most important friendships I've ever had."

With that, I went into detail about how I felt about my body image, Rory seeming to calm down with every one of my sentences. "The reason I didn't answer was that my mother has convinced me that I'm...too big. I eat too much despite my diet, and she hates the fact I have actual natural breasts that are bigger than hers, and made me feel so guilty about it since I had this huge puberty spurt over the summer of '97. Numerous times she's suggested I eat even less than I do, and even reduction surgery, which thank God no doctor in the Northeast will even consider giving her a quote for until I turn eighteen and can make my own medical decisions, and she tries to shape me in her image rather than that of her and my father's, because I received most of the genes for my figure from his side. I still eat heartily thanks to Fran's kindness and the fact she's being paid by my very supportive father, and not my stifling mother. And despite how I go to these insane measures to hide it, I love my chest, and I don't want to change anything about it."

She beckoned me to sit on her bed, and she held my hand as I finished admitting I was ashamed of my body. "I don't want to be Louise, all bone and no skin Rory. I actually respect you for never sticking to a diet, eating what you want in healthy portions and having a metabolism that lets you burn it all off right away. But my mother has fucked over my brain when it comes to my body image, and it does take me a long time to take a compliment to heart, which I assumed you were doing."

"Yes it was," Rory said softly, smiling. "Paris, you're very blessed and you should stop hiding everything."

"I know I should, but my mother is stuck on this scary Bela Karoli-ish plan that I can't stray from at all, except its all academic. Even my dates are matched up by IQ and grade point average, not actual looks or traits, which mean I get a lot of duds or guys desperate to be my first. The only reason they even take an interest in me is because I have a D chest, they've never cared what's on the inside, so I figure if I keep myself off the market, I don't have a problem."

Thankfully she understood after I explained everything to her, and after promising her with a pinky swear that the V material was off my repertoire of humor forever, she finally let me back in. I explained a few more things, like how I was closer to Fran and Daddy more than I ever would be with my mother, and that I never meant to let a little question like that become such a fiery argument.

"Paris, I knew you regretted it from the moment you uttered those words, that it was heat of the moment," she said as we both lay down on the bed looking up at the ceiling. "But I'm never sure with you so I wanted to make sure you were sincere about being sorry about it. I did get mad at first through Friday night, but by the time I woke up in the morning yesterday, I was over it."

She then turned towards me, and hesitated. "I'm sorry I shut you out Par. And I'm sorry everything ended up blown out of proportion in the conference room." She took my left hand into her right and intertwined our fingers together in a strong bond. "But having some time to think things over made me realize that you are quickly becoming my most important friend in life, maybe even my best soon enough. And I'm done losing you over petty little boy trouble or miscommunication for so long. So I want you to promise me that from now on, if anything bugs you pertaining to me, or you have to admit to something like about your mother, you'll come to me. I assure you of the same honesty in return, no matter what ends up happening. We're in these things together, and it's a two-way street." She went on to explain that she felt a closer bond to me than with any girl she had met since she started attending school (she and Lane were playmates way before she turned three), and she had found in me a solid soulmate when it came to our dreams and wishes for later in life.

It just went like that for the next hour or so. We talked idly about school, homework and our lives in general, the topic of our body images fading away in such close and intimate conversation. Even though her bed was far from the queen-sized cloud in my bedroom, just having such wonderful company was making me so sleepy and I didn't want to drive back home. Eventually, we fell asleep together in her bed about six, and I didn't have any jarring or odd dreams about her at all. It was a tight fit, but somehow we went four hours without one of us falling onto the floor, nor were either of us cover hogs.

That was how Lorelai found us at 10 am when she went to wake Rory up to go do her Sunday work at the Inn. She turned on the light and was a little freaked at the sight of another person in her daughter's bed.

Once I turned around to acknowledge her surprised voice though, Ms. Gilmore seemed to be relieved it was just me. I explained that I really had an urge to patch things up with Rory, and yes she did make fun of me for 'sleeping' with her daughter, joking that I was a harlot. Blushing, I got out of the bed (wearing a dark red Harvard t-shirt and black sweatpants I just threw on before I left the Manor), and let Rory and Lorelai get into their morning routine, due to the fact I didn't have a change of clothes in the car so I could join them. I said goodbye and prepared for the trip back to Hartford, and expected to be reamed out by my mother for leaving the house in the middle of the night.

Actually I was able to get back in undetected. I guess her newest affair is a Sunday brunch kind of thing, so she never even knew I had snuck out of the Manor as she was too busy 'entertaining' her newest 'client' at Mohegan Sun Saturday evening, and I completely forgot about it. Fran didn't even know either because she was at her Hartford apartment for an off night before church in the morning. I was starting to think that luck was really getting on my side if I was able to leave my house undetected to 'sleep' with Rory.

I'm a harlot according to Lorelai. For some reason the image of me slowly seducing Rory just seems more comical than sexy, our first time would probably be as awkward as could be. I'd probably twist her nipple a little too hard and I'd end up with a strained jaw from figuring out where my tongue should go. I do keep those images in mind as much as possible, the things that could go wrong if I admitted and Rory went for it, and keep those embarrassing outcomes far, far away from my fantasies.

As for this week, the last few days, they've been interesting. Madeline and Louise are looking for dates for their Halloween parties, so they've left us two alone to eat in the dining hall. We've been somewhat quiet, though I have to note that Rory started to take Louise's seat next to me, and was shifting a little closer than my bottle blonde confidant ever had been. Must be her slimmer figure, she doesn't need as much room to sit down; though I have been noticing she's been kind of brushing up against my arm several times.

Rory and I have already decided not to do anything on Halloween that involves a costume, but she's heading up to Boston to see her father, thus I'll be spending October 31st alone. I certainly don't mind, because Madeline gave us this insane costume idea where we'd go together to the party, and I would've been Roxie Hart, Rory would dress as Velma. Mr. Gilmore and the Bitch win out every time though, so I'll be left to dream about my girl in a 20's flapper dress instead of actually seeing her in it.

That stupid control freak dick-sucking and over-planning hussy! Sherrie's like a younger more perkier version of my mother, and I can never see getting along with her because of things like that!

It really doesn't matter though. I'm starting to feel like I'm going insane, because I think Rory's giving off vibes I can't ignore. The ditching of the hosiery, the gym class, the intimate contact we've started to have more than ever before. Tuesday on the ride home she stretched her arms out behind the seat, and one of her hands ended up brushing against my shoulder for a split moment and her hand seemed to linger against it as I drove, she almost veered me off and onto the shoulder.

Though it could be just the fact I've decided to ditch the jacket when I dress for school. I've been wearing the blue sweater instead over my blouse, and feeling a lot more comfortable in my own skin since she reassured me that I have something she's jealous of. I've seen her eyes wander down towards my bust as we sit next to each other in life sciences, but I don't know her ulterior motives. All I know is that unconsciously I'm returning the stare and glancing away from my notes and down towards her legs, and there were a couple of times where my teacher thought I was falling asleep and told me to pay attention.

Which is where it definitely isn't in this Russian novels class. Rory's sitting behind me, and I can feel her presence as her fingers brush up against the back of my sweater as she takes some of the most pathetic notes possible, enough to get that A without much effort to get her merit award. I swear it's accidental, but then why do I have this wonderful and serene feeling running up my scalp? She must somehow be sensing my stress level, and trying to calm me down by playing with my hair since it worked so well before the date in DC.

Thankfully far, far away from actually having to read this shit aloud to the class and the teacher's eyes off the 'scholar row' (the middle three seats in the first three rows), I scribble off a quick note to Rory, tear it out of my notebook and pass it back slyly.


I'd blow Boris Yeltsin before I ever read any of these crappy books voluntarily again. Thanks for noticing I hate this class.


I unsnap the sharpened lead of my pencil off on the paper so she can use her strategy of using a Dixon to wrap her response around one as she passes me a new utensil. I unroll the note and laugh internally at what she says.


I'll join you and we can get plastered on vodka from the Inn before we come in tomorrow, anything would make this class more interesting!


P.S. I hate it too, and it's my pleasure to make you feel better.

My heart skips a beat as I read her postscript and wonder if she is purposely trying to cause me to be aroused. All I know is whatever her intent on relaxing me is, my shoulders are relaxed further back into the desk chair, the other 30 students are too zombied out to notice anything but Mr. Mercurio drone on about some obscure czarist proclamation from the 1760's, and Rory's fingers are massaging my scalp and neck in the oddest way, causing my arms to goosebump.

I hope I don't fall asleep during this class, but it seems more and more like I want to. There's just nothing more I want to do right now than slide my skirt up just a smidge, close my legs, move the crotch of my panties off to the side and use the friction between my legs to have a nice touchless masturbation session with no one, not even Rory the wiser. To them it would just look like I was shaking my leg to and fro as Rory's pleasurable touch was redirected down below towards my core, and she brought me to an unknowing orgasm that would make me flush for the rest of the day...

Uh, darn, I better not. Seems the teacher just decided I was a little too drowsy and called on me to read another lousy passage from War and Peace, about six pages worth. I find where we are and start reading it with about as much enthusiasm as reading a teen magazine, wishing instead I was reading love sonnets to Rory as we cuddled together in bed.

Oh well, it's all good. She's still playing with my hair unconsciously and I feel a little better about the forced drudgery with her delicious fingers against the back my neck as I read. Now all I need to figure out is how I can get Rory behind me in every class she takes with me...

The Pros and Cons of Romancing Paris Gellar Nate Gilmore Girls Main Index