Jessie and Katie (in Friends and Lovers) - Episode 95 "Hello...Brain Damage"

Written by: TVM ( & CJ Ames (



"JOEY" Cori screamed in anger from the store front as Joey looked back and momentarily let Marissa's comment slip her mind. Joey grabbed Marissa's hand and pulled her along as she walked back to Cori's side in confusion. "You didn't even notice I left."

"Cori, Marissa was gonna tell me something and I just..."

"I'm gonna go inside and let you guys try and work this out without me screwing it up anymore" Marissa said as she walked inside.

"Look, I am sorry about what happened back there OK?" Joey said, "But I looked out the window and saw her crying and panicked."

"The same way you used to do with me," Cori said. "Now it's her."

"God this is so screwed up," Joey said as she put her hands over her face. "Cori something has changed."

"Yeh you started neglecting me," Cori said.

"Cori, you've changed, I don't know when or how or maybe it's just me and this is all my fault," Joey said.

"Pretty much, I didn't do anything," Cori snapped.

"STOP FUCKIN...blaming me for everything, like you didn't do anything," Joey said as George came out of the store with an empty dolly and reloaded it with another set of boxes. Seeing him disappear back inside Joey said in a calmer voice. "You've changed, you were never jealous of me before, you'd always get hurt and not talk to me and I knew, but this, this is new, now you're jealous and bitching at me every damn second and won't let make up for anything."

"I'm sorry?"

"Whatever," Joey said. "What happened to you? Where's the girl I fell in love with?"

"She's standing in front of you but all you want is the blond you were loving on earlier," Cori said.

"Cori she was raped I'm trying to help her through it or just being a friend," Joey said. "Why won't you give me a chance to fuck up before you go into uber jealous mode?"

"I saw the way you look at her" Cori said as Joey felt like pulling her hair out as she moved in front of Cori and kissed her on the lips and willed Cori to kiss her back. Which she did after a moment's resistance, but suddenly both felt it, as their lips started the usual rhythm against the other's. It wasn't the same. Which scared Joey as she felt Cori slide her tongue roughly into her mouth and they started to french and Cori almost instinctively turned Joey against the wall and kissed her more roughly as she slid her hands under Joey's shirt. Joey pulled away abruptly and looked at Cori in surprise as she pushed her hands away.

"What was that?" Joey asked as she pulled her shirt back down. "You never did that before."

"Joey I don't know" Cori said putting her hands on her head, "I just did it."

"Have you had any headaches in the last few days?" Joey asked.

"No, my back hurts a little" Cori said as Joey smiled and asked, "You sure?"

"Yeh, seriously I feel OK" Cori said softly. "I'm sorry about that, I don't know why I did it."

"I think I do" Joey said.

"Wanna fill me in?" Cori asked as Joey laughed.

"Your old personality is coming out and apparently it's coming out strong" Joey said, "And everything I loved about you seems to hidden now. It just comes out at certain times."

"I'm scared, confused, mad and upset" Cori said, "I've got 25 million things banging off the inside of my head, my memory is coming back more all the time and I'm just being...a grapefruit head."

"Passion's words" Joey said. "Am I wrong but that kiss was weird."

"Yeh it was" Cori said, "Really weird, instead of trying to kiss you, I dunno."

"What are we gonna do?" Joey asked.

"You expect me to know?" Cori asked as Joey smiled, "Hello...brain damage."

"How bout this..." Joey said as she put her hands on Cori's stomach. "Just relax, spend some time with me and Passion and even Marissa. I promise all of this will sort out, my girl your going through so much right now. A lot of this is stress."

"You think so?" Cori asked with a goofy grin as Joey laughed and let Cori kiss her. "Yeh that was better."

"Yeh it was" Joey said with a sweet smile.

"Excuse me love birds" Judy said from the door as Marley now stood by her and said, "Yeh excuse her, love birds."

"Are you two done fightin so Joey can help me with the running of our shop?" Judy asked.

"Why?" Joey asked with a smirk.

"Well, George is workin hard he needs some help" Judy said just as George came out with an empty dolly and reloaded it with several more boxes as Marley joined Joey and asked George, "Can I ride on your thing, George?"

"If it's OK with your sister" George said with an amused look as Cori nodded and Joey lifted her up and sat her on top of the boxes and held her as George wheeled it into the store.

"You OK Cori?" Judy asked as Cori shrugged.

"It's just like I don't know who I am" Cori said.

"Honey, you've had major surgery, loss of memory and been in a car accident, and you are still walking, talking and loving" Judy said, "Everything else is gravy. Now stop stressing so much over Joey and Marissa sweety, they're friends, don't make it worse by seeing things that aren't there, OK?"

"That makes sense" Cori said as Judy laughed.

"Every once in a while I do dish out some good advice" Judy said as she kissed Cori's cheek, "Now I already put that eager beaver sister of yours to work, might have to hire her, you wanna come join us?"

"That was fun" Marley announced from the door as Judy and Cori laughed. "George ain't no boogerhead no more."

"And you're gonna get it Mar bear" Cori said as Marley went running down the sidewalk giggling and said as she watched Cori chase her, "No, no, boogerhead."  

** ** ** Meanwhile @ Sarah's Apartment

"That is all that mother fucking thing has done all damn day" Sarah spat as the phone rang yet again and she got up from the window and glanced at the number and saw it read Jeffrey K. Santzler, "Ohmigod, Grace it's my dad, I mean Jeff."

"Hey" Sarah said excitedly as she picked up the phone.

"We're sorry your call cannot be completed as dialed, please hang up and try your call again" The Voice said as Sarah laughed. "Damn, I guess she's not home."

"Will you stop acting stupid" Sarah said as Jeffrey laughed.

"He's your father what do you expect?" Grace asked from the bed as she worked on her homework, prompting Sarah to flip her the bird as both laughed.

"How you doing?" He asked.

"I'm good just stressed out"

"You and Grace not having troubles I hope?" Jeffrey asked.

"No, no, we have our petty little fights but she's my rock" Sarah said as Grace smiled at her, "Tests at school, I'm trying to study and all the phone has done all day is ring and you're the first person I've wanted to talk to."

"How about your new dad give you some advice?"

"OK" Sarah said.

"Stop stressing so damn much, life is fun now live it" Jeffrey said, "Or I will come to Chicago and take you to live with me."

"Right" Sarah said as both laughed. "But that does bring up something I need to tell you."

"Oh boy" He said as Sarah crawled on to the bed as Grace almost instinctively turned onto her back and laid back against the pillows. Sarah without even looking moved in front of Grace and leaned back against her girlfriends chest as she went on, "We're not moving down there full time after all."

"Why not, is it financial?"

"No, no, Jeffrey it's not money at all..."

"Cause you know you name it and..."

"It's mine I know" Sarah said as Grace played with her hair. "It's my best friend and Grace's Mom, two of the most important people in my life are here and I can't stand to leave them. I had myself fooled into thinking I could. But they're too important to me."

"What about me?"

"You can come and stay here for a few months and we'll come down there for the summer" Sarah said, "Would that be good?"

"I'd love to have you two down here full time," he said, "But coming to Chicago to see you two does sound like a nice way to break up the year."

"Us two?"

"You and Grace, duh Sarah" He said as Sarah laughed.

"Who says she wants to see you?" Sarah asked as Grace took the phone away as Sarah giggled.

"Hey Jeffrey, this is Grace and don't you dare let your goofy daughter put ideas in your head" Grace said as Jeffrey laughed.

"How you doing my daughters beautiful girlfriend?" Jeffrey asked.

"I'm good just trying to keep Sarah from flipping out on someone from the stress" Grace said as Sarah smiled up at her.

"I didn't ask about my daughter, I asked about you" Jeffrey said. "My daughter has a big enough of mouth to tell me everything on her mind. Trust me if she's like her father it's loose at both ends on many occasions."

"Yeh it is" Grace said as they both laughed, "And I'm good, thanks for asking."

"You two making fun of me huh?" Sarah asked with a smirk.

"We sure are my girl" Grace said as Sarah grinned. "He said your tongue is loose at both ends like his."

"No it's not" Sarah said as she leaned her head back and pressed her lips to Grace's other ear and whispered, "If it was Grace I'd never leave you shaking like I always do."

"Oh god, your bad" Grace said as Sarah laughed and Grace realized who she was talking to and began to blush like she'd never known. "Your daughter is mean to me Jeffrey."

"I guess she's got a dirty mind like her father huh?" Jeffrey asked as Grace's mouth dropped opened in shock.

"What's wrong my baby? I never seen you blush that color before" Sarah said loud enough to make sure her father could hear before she started laughing out loud.

"So you're blushing huh?" Jeffrey asked.

"You know this shared torture is not fair" Grace said as Jeffrey laughed.

"I thought you liked being shared my baby?" Sarah asked in the same manner as before, only now whispering into Grace's ear. "Remember Brittany?"

"Oh lord" Grace said as Sarah lost it in laughter as Grace resisted the urge to begin whipping her right there.

"I'm gonna let you talk to your daughter before I whip her good" Grace said.

"Hey" Jeffrey said, "I'm glad you're with Sarah, she's not had it easy the last few years from what I gather and you're the one person who seems to make her happy."

"She did the same for me, just so you know" Grace said with a smile as Sarah finally got her giggles under control and looked up.

"It was nice talking to you" Jeffrey said as Grace smiled.

"You too" Grace said as she handed the phone back to Sarah.

"She was blushing a million colors a minute pops" Sarah giggled as she took the phone, Feeling Grace pull her back and slip her arms around her.

"Like father, like daughter" Jeffrey said, "So, not to break up the fun but I did call for a reason."


"Yeh, it's good though" Jeffrey said, "You're cranky old bastard of a grandfather is wanting to meet his granddaughter and I'm hoping you'll be a good new daughter and help your pops out on this."

"He wants to meet me?" Sarah asked with a huge smile.

"Yes he sure does" Jeffrey said, "And now that Mom is back in town from her cruise, she dying to meet you too."

"Oh wow, I have a grandma again" Sarah said.

"Don't get too excited till you meet her" Jeffrey said with what Sarah knew was a playful tone.

"Afraid I'll like her more than you?" Sarah asked as Grace laughed.

"I know the old bat, no chance of that" Jeffrey said as he and Sarah both laughed.

"I so wanna meet them" Sarah said, "When can I come down?"

"Well, that's the thing," Jeffrey said with a barely contained excitement. "Your flight leaves at 1 a.m."  

"Are you fuckin kiddin me pops?" Sarah asked as Jeffrey laughed.

"No, paid for, first class, you and Grace" He said, "I'm asking you to indulge me one time, please?"

"Well we don't have any plans I don't think, hold on" Sarah said as she turned to Grace and explained as Grace's bottom lip dropped. "Will you do this for me? I really wanna meet my..."

"Yesss, all you had to do was ask" Grace said as she took the phone back, "Jeffrey, can you meet us at the airport?"

"Already to leave" He said, "Does this mean you're coming?"

"Yes is does if we can get packed and everything in the next what 6 hours or so" Grace said, "What about our flight plans?"

"Check Sarah's email and print it out" Jeffrey said.

"Gotcha" Grace said, "Here's Sarah I got packin to do."

"Hey, I guess I'll see you in a few hours OK?" Sarah asked as the excitement of the moment began to overtake her.

"Be careful and I'll see you at the airport"

"Bye pops" Sarah giggled as she hung up and jumped off the bed as Grace pulled a suit case out of the closet in a rush and both watched Sarah's box of 'goodies' come tumbling down and splatter to the ground. The strap_on popping out as it did. Sarah tried to control her giggles as she asked Grace, "Could be a sign, huh?"

"No" Grace said, "You are not even gonna get me going when you know we got things to do. My ass and the rest of me is off limits."

"Why not Gracey?" Sarah asked as she picked up the strap_on and held it in place. "You don't enjoy it?"

"You know I love it" Grace said as she moved in front of Sarah and took it away and laid it on the bed, "Please stop, I'm serious, we have to get to the airport and if you start you're gonna make me forget everything like you always do."

"I love you my girl" Sarah said sweetly as she kissed Grace. "Be mine forever?"

"I already am" Grace said as Sarah smiled. "Now get over there and check your email while I pack, cause we both know you can't do that."

"That's why we're so good together" Sarah said, "You are good at some things..."

"Yeh?" Grace said as Sarah raised her eyebrows suggestively and said, "...And I'm good at being good to you."

"WOW, you are so right" Grace said as she looked at the strap_on and then back to Sarah as she said, "You changed my mind, be good to me now?"

"Maybe later..." Sarah said as she giggled and walked off and felt Grace tackle her onto the bed.    

** ** ** Meanwhile @ Book Lovers

"Thank you come again" Joey said to the nice older gentleman who was leaving with an arm full of books. Sitting down and taking a deep breath, she rested her mind for a second as chaos seemed to be taking over around her. Judy and Henry were lost in conversation as they stacked boxes on top of boxes of August's new novel which had arrived just as the insanity with Cori had erupted. Passion was now chasing Marley around Henry's lobby next door and then taking turns with her little sister playing on Henry's medicine ball. Cori was now reading silently in a chair by the front door, seemingly not having a care in the world. Marissa was lost in the set_up of Judy's new internet café. The cute blond sure is working hard to impress me, Joey thought, as she blushed and tried not to stare at the girl in the back. Suddenly, Marissa looked up and caught Joey staring as she gave her friend a knowing smile and wiggled her tongue as Joey blushed a deep red and looked away, hearing Marissa laugh, knowing she'd got her. "I'm sooo gonna kill her."

"If you keep making eyes at her, Cori's gonna get mad again," Judy said into Joey's ear as she came behind the counter.

"Huh?" Joey asked as Judy gave her a knowing smile. "No, it's just innocent, nothing's happening."

"Joey, you're full of it" Judy said, "You and her have been making eyes at each other from the first second she walked in here."

"Flirting, that's it" Joey said, "Seriously, we are only..."

"Trying to convince yourself?" Judy asked. "I know you pretty well Joey, you've got a thing for her."

"No" Joey said, "I'm in love with Cori. Besides she's straight."

"Yeah right" Judy said as she pointed to Cori and then to Marissa and said, "Yeah right."

"Huh?" Joey asked as Judy walked away with a knowing smile. Joey feeling her smile return as Marissa came to the front counter and leaned over and said, "Sorry about that."

"You're crazy" Joey said.

"Only about you...I mean..." Marissa said as she covered her mouth and both giggled. "I mean, help me with the computers for a while? I got two more of them online. We make a good team."

"Yeh we do huh?" Joey asked as she looked at Cori and back to Marissa and said, "Gimme a few minutes, she's gonna blow again if we keep talking like this."

"Then dump her" Marissa said as Joey's face showed her surprise and she felt Marissa's hand on hers as she said, "If she wants to be uber jealous and make your life a hell then dump her. If you love her and she loves you then try and work things out. There's no reason to go through what you did with Shady."

"And exactly how do you know what I went through with Shady?" Joey asked in a hushed whisper as she found herself clutching at Marissa's hand now.

"Like it's a big secret?" Marissa asked, "Crazy red lives a few doors down and I'd always hear you guys screaming at each other when I walked by or sometimes just from my bedroom window. And school was buzzing about you two when school started that it was over. All kinds of crazy stuff floated around and you know me, gossip queen."

"Like what?"

"She hit you, she forced you to do things, she was in love with you but you had already found Cori" Marissa said, "Sam, Shady's little sister spread most of it I think."

"Yeh I stayed at the hospital a lot with Cori when she came out of the coma" Joey said. "Shady broke my heart so many times it's not even funny."

"And now you're new girl is acting like that?" Marissa asked.

"Kind of" Joey admitted and noticed her hand still in Marissa's. "But she's going through so much."

"So was Crazy Red, and that's still no excuse to treat you like that" Marissa said, "You don't deserve that."

"And you didn't deserve to be raped" Joey said as Marissa smiled. "You OK?"

"I'm so good right now" Marissa said as her smile brightened in Joey's gaze.

"Joey?" Cori asked gently from the corner as Marissa snapped her head away and Joey looked to see Cori standing by the door. "Can we take a walk, please?"

"Sure" Joey said as she got up and met Cori by the door.

"I'll get back to the grind, slacker" Marissa said as Joey smiled and turned back as Cori took her hand gently.

"We're not OK are we?" Cori asked as soon as the door closed and Joey fought the urge to immediately reassure Cori like had become her reflex reaction since the day they met.

"Cori I dunno" Joey said as she took a deep breath and both started to walk slowly.

"You know, thanks to you, I'm pretty strong now" Cori said as Joey took her hand and laced their fingers together. "I can survive without you if I have to."

"You can Cori" Joey said with a proud smile. "I am just so proud of how far you've come. Look at you."

"I'm doing good huh?" Cori asked with a proud smile.

"So good" Joey said. "Walking and your living life again and your memory is coming back."

"And I'm losing you" Cori said, "What can I do to stop this?"

"You want to?"

"Yeh I still love you as much as ever...I think" Cori said as she got frustrated and stopped and leaned against the building they were now in front of. "I just wish one thing in my life made sense, it used to be you, but now there's nothing."

"Passion makes sense, Lily and Rick loving you makes sense, Marley being a boogerhead makes sense" Joey said as she hugged Cori and kissed her cheek.

"Yeh she's impossibly sweet" Cori said. "What are we gonna do?"

"I'm dumping your ass" Joey said with a smirk as Cori smiled.

"If you did I deserved it after today" Cori said. "You didn't really do anything wrong."

"I honestly don't think I did either" Joey said, "I should have made a better effort to see you though."

"Things feel different" Cori said, "They do."

"Yeh they do huh?" Joey asked as she laid her head on Cori's shoulder. "Something just seemed to change overnight with us."

"It's me and the way I'm acting different. Passion jumped me about it," Cori said as Joey looked up at her in surprise. "She did, she said I was a grapefruit head."

"You are, you've always been my CoCo" Joey said as Cori laughed. "You've lost something and I don't know what it is."

"You loved me cause I needed you" Cori said, "I don't like I used too."

"My work here is done?" Joey asked with a giggle as Cori smiled.

"No it's not, I still wanna be with you a lot" Cori said, "But so many things are going on in my head now, it's so hard to figure out what's real and what's not. I mean you have no idea how hyper I've been since we talked this morning. God, I'm about to crawl out of my skin."

"That did sorta come online for you huh?" Joey asked in a sultry voice.

"Yeh it did and it won't go away and believe me I tried to put it out of my mind" Cori said, "I must have been a nympho before my accident."

"Ohmigod Cori, no you weren't, that happens," Joey said. "Everyone gets that way from time to time."

"I'm almost to the point of begging someone to know," Cori said as Joey laughed. "God it's killing me. And now with you this close I can't take this."

"Well there is one way to rediscover each other" Joey said as she kissed Cori's lips and resisted the thought of it being different as she pulled away and said, "You do have a girlfriend for a reason."

"Yeh I like pussy" Cori said before her brain could catch up with her mouth and she quickly covered her mouth in shock as Joey laughed out loud and fell back against her. "Let's pretend I didn't say that."

"Cori you have changed" Joey said, "You would never have said that before your memory started coming back."

"So?" Cori asked as she kissed Joey softly and for the moment Joey felt something completely knew and she didn't think it was love. "Not like I remember what it tastes like anyway."

"Meow" Joey said as she stroked Cori's stomach, "I kinda like it when you talk like that."

"The rumor is I was pretty a big slut before," Cori said softly as Joey kissed her and both felt the other's tongue against their own for a long moment. "What about you?"

"Shady and a ex_friend named Rayne Stillwater, she lives down from me" Joey said. "You?"

"Jessie, Katie, and Ma...a girl named Marlene," Cori said in a stammer and Joey could swear she almost said Marissa, shaking that thought she looked to Cori's eyes closely and noticed something she had never seen before, it looked like she was hiding something. Right as Joey was about to ask Cori went on, "And Sarah Grasser I mean. Maybe a few more for all I know."

"You were a slut," Joey said with a teasing grin and feeling Cori try and pull away with a smile on her face. "Bet you were good."

"I must have been, cause I got the craziest ideas floating around my head" Cori said, "Like I said, it's like a roller coaster inside here."

"You just need to relax," Joey said as she looked down and carefully unbuttoned Cori's jeans and slid the zipper down as Cori stopped her. "Stop?"

"What are you doing?" Cori asked as Joey guided Cori's hand to hold her jeans in place and said, "Make sure your jeans don't fall. I'm just gonna do something I've waited a long time to do. Can I?"

"You wanna touch me?" Cori asked as Joey kissed her softly and felt Joey's hand slip down her stomach and to her sex. Flinching she felt Joey pull away and look at her, Joey's hand slowly now going up and down in a soft rhythm, "Ohmigod, ohmigod, ohhhhh."

"Shhhh," Joey said with a devilish grin as Cori laid her head back and closed her lips tight as she enjoyed the soothing sensations now sweeping her body and finally satisfying that urge that Cori thought would never go away. Jerking against the wall behind her as she wrapped her arms around Joey's neck and moaned as low as possible into her girlfriends ear. "Is that feeling good?"

"OH yeah," Cori said in a whimper as Joey's hand sped it's attack up and down and she applied a new light pressure to the center of Cori's sex and smiled as she felt Cori jerk against her and whimper again and again. Joey could feel the wetness on her fingers and with a few more gentle passes, she pushed one finger inside and started a rhythm in and out and felt the incredible tightness around it as Cori clutched at her shirt. "Close, please?"

"I know baby," Joey said with a kiss to Cori's lips as both looked into the others eyes and with a few more gentle movements in and out, Joey felt the spasms start around her finger and she watched Cori's mouth drop open slightly and her eyes widen at the startling sensations that stormed her body. Finally feeling Cori relax against her. Stopping her finger and pulling it free, Joey looked at it and as Cori watched she licked it seductively. "Damn what have I been missing."

"What I just felt, god thank you," Cori said as she kissed Joey with as much passion as she could and soon they were lost in each other. Joey feeling everything she had felt before this whole mess had started as she massaged her tongue with Cori's and feeling her body now needing what she had just gave to the girl she was now convinced she was still totally in love with.

** ** ** Meanwhile @ Sammler_Manning Manor

"So we stomping here tonight?" Zoe asked as her and Mandy came though the door. Mandy kicking off her shoes as if she had lived there for 20 years and running to the living room and going airborne as she crashed down on the couch.

"Yep dad's got some business friends over planning for that big ass ball and he said to stay clear for a few hours," Mandy said as she looked up at Zoe with an adoring smile. "So I'm totally yours for the night, and every other night, until you run me off."

"OK, then get out," Zoe said as she walked over to the entertainment center and slid her own shoes off and turned on the stereo and put on a CD and turned as it started to play and saw Mandy walking slowly towards the door. Smiling as she rolled her eyes she charged after her and slammed into her as both laughed. "You are not leaving Amanda, I'm not ready to run you off yet."

"Right..." Mandy said as Zoe covered her mouth and took her hand.

"You're gonna dance with me and keep that big mouth shut for a change," Zoe said as Mandy laughed and let Zoe lead her to the center of the room just as Stephanie and Jessie came down the stairs, undetected by the pair in the center of the living room, Mandy smiling as Zoe awkwardly started moving in a stiff rhythm.

"Zoe this is not working, I don't think we're coordinated enough to dance" Mandy giggled as Zoe got frustrated and gave her a dirty look.

"I was trying, I wanted to be close to you is all" Zoe said as Mandy realized her stupid joke had hurt her feelings.

"OK, I get that" Mandy said as she touched Zoe's hand and felt Zoe push it away. "Calm down cutie it was only a joke. I'm sorry."

"Hey guys" Stephanie said with a smile from the entrance to the living room as Jessie leaned against her back. "Looks like someone could use dance lessons."

"What is this pick on Zoe night?" Zoe asked as Mandy hugged her from behind and kissed her neck as Zoe tried to walk off.

"I love you" Mandy said as Zoe relaxed and looked back at her. "I do honestly."

"No it's not, I'm a good dancer, want me to teach you?" Stephanie asked as Zoe looked back at her. "And you don't look like you got skills either Mandy."

"I'm good on fast songs, so is Zoe," Mandy said, "but slow songs mean you gotta be in perfect rhythm with the other person."

"I'm sorry" Zoe said as she looked back at Mandy, "I love you too, you do know that?"

"Yeh I do."

"How about I teach you?" Stephanie asked as Jessie took a seat on the couch. "Lily said you were going to a big ball downtown and you really need to know how if you going to that."

"She's right" Mandy said as she turned and changed the CD to another one, then hitting play as a slow song come on. "How about you teach her and I'll watch?"

"Kinda be hard to teach both of you at once" Stephanie said as took Zoe's hand and said to her, "You OK with dancing with me?"

"Probably make her panties wet," Mandy said as Stephanie laughed and Zoe started to chase after her as Mandy ran and crashed down on the couch beside of Jessie in a fit of giggles.

"Zoe, stop, let her go" Stephanie said as Zoe gave Mandy a dirty look and tried to hide a smile as she finally looked back at Stephanie and found them now almost eye to eye. "This is gonna be hard if you let her push your buttons, focus on me."

"That was a good one" Jessie said as Mandy laughed beside of her and they both watched Stephanie and Zoe awkwardly start to take the first few steps.

"Yeh it was" Mandy said as she looked at Jessie and gave her a knowing smile and said to Jessie's shock, "I used to have a crush on you."

"You wanna repeat that?"

"I used to have a crush on you" Mandy said, "You remember you and Grace came into Blockbuster that night of the big book signing?"

"Yeh and you've changed a lot since then" Jessie said with a knowing smile in return. "And if you had such a big crush on me why not just tell me?"

"Because I was stupid and scared to admit I liked a girl" Mandy said, "At the time I had myself convinced I was straight and I only wanted to do stuff with girls when I was buzzing."

"Like the night of the party?" Jessie asked. "You begged me to go and then got all weird and ran off to get high."

"I went to get a good buzz so I could hit on you" Mandy said with a shrug as Zoe seemed to be getting into the flow of things as Stephanie now held her in her arms and made Zoe stop looking down at her feet. "And when I did you were gone."

"I wouldn't have flirted with you like that anyway" Jessie said. "I don't do that stuff."

"Trust me, you probably wouldn't have known, I was pretty good at hiding it" Mandy said. "No big drama cause now we're with different people, just thought it was interesting."

"When did it change?" Jessie asked as Mandy smiled knowing she was interested in the details now.

"First day of school" Mandy said as she pointed to Zoe, "that's when I saw Zoe in a new light."

"You're good to her, she's not little Zoe anymore" Jessie said.

"Nope now she's my girl" Mandy said with a smile. "I am so in love with her that it's crazy."

"I see that" Jessie said as Mandy watched Zoe and Stephanie with a smile. "You think we would have worked if you'd asked me out?"

"Would you have gone out with me?" Mandy asked as Jessie thought about it for a long moment.

"I think so, I thought you were cute that first night I met you at Blockbuster, told Grace that right after we left" Jessie said. "But the whole crap with Katie and all really got to me."

"Cute huh?" Mandy asked as Jessie blushed. "Besides before I knew it you and Joanna had a thang and then you and Stephanie."

"And you had a thang for that pretty brunette dancing with my girlfriend" Jessie said.

"OK, so tell me when to shut up?" Mandy said in a low voice as she leaned close to Jessie and said, "How do you keep your hands off that?"

"Who says I do?" Jessie asked as Mandy laughed.

"I honestly had no idea" Mandy said, "And no I won't tell anyone, including Zoe."

"She figured it out first" Jessie said as Mandy showed her surprise. "She did, found some of Stephanie's undies in my room."

"Trophy?" Mandy asked as Jessie realized Zoe had asked almost exactly the same thing when she found out.

"Nooo" Jessie said. "It's not like that, I didn't do it for that..."

"I know" Mandy said softly. "Just something to remember the night by."

"Exactly" Jessie said, "You and Zoe? And I hope not?"

"Not even thought about it" Mandy said honestly. "We kid about it but...we are so not ready to do that. Sam and Jennifer are but I'm not."

"Sam?" Jessie asked as Mandy blushed and realized she'd let one slip.

"Yeh, don't repeat that?" Mandy asked, "Shady caught her and Jennifer, the mouthy blond friend from across the street?"

"Holy shit" Jessie said in shock. "Are you serious?"

"Yep" Mandy said, "Kinda hard not to figure out what they were doing when the blond skank comes out of Sam's room with nothing but one of my dad's old shirts, her hair all in knots and the run way, down there? (FYI: Technically incomplete, but I'll let this slide, as it changes the emphasis slightly, and draws attention to the appropriate clause.  Be careful with these.) Looking paved and freshly wetted down?"

"It was that obvious?" Jessie asked.

"Yeh Zoe noticed it" Mandy said, "Whatever Sam was doing she must have been good at it."

"Wait...paved?" Jessie asked as Mandy groaned and thought for a second and said, "No carpet to match the drapes?"

"She's like 14" Jessie said.

"So?" Mandy asked. "I started when I was 13, it itches like hell when you don't."

"Katie talked me into it," Jessie said as neither one noticed Stephanie and Zoe turning to see them lost in conversation.

"Having fun?" Stephanie asked as Jessie and Mandy looked up and both blushed. "Look to be an interesting topic."

"Yeh it was" Jessie said as her and Mandy laughed.

"Wanna fill me in?" Stephanie asked.

"Me too?" Zoe chimed in.

"Nothing major my girl, I was telling Jessie about me googling your yahoo..."