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  04x11 - The Tao of Dawson
 Posted: 01/28/01 16:22
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Episode 411 - The Tao of Dawson

[Scene: The docks outside Dawson's House. Dawson and Pacey are sitting on the end of the docks fishing, and it is really early in the morning.]

Pacey: Maybe we're too early. Maybe the fish are still asleep.

Dawson: Fish don't sleep, Pacey.

Pacey: You know, I'm really glad we're hanging out, but... Did our first jaunt together in months really have to be at sunrise?

Dawson: Oh. I got something to tell you that I have a feeling will keep you awake. I like your sister, Pacey.

Pacey: You like her, or you like her like her?

Dawson: I'm talking about Gretchen Witter, not Winnie cooper.

Pacey: Well, are we talking about the feelings of fondness and fellowship that naturally follow from an obligatory mistletoe kiss, or am I going to find you outside of my house holding a boom box over your head?

Dawson: I'm crazy about her.

Pacey: Well...You've had a crush on her for years. I mean, that's all this is, right?

Dawson: No. This is more than a grade school crush. And even though she won't acknowledge it, I think, on some level, she feels the same way about me.

Pacey: It's a hell of a lot to digest before breakfast, Dawson.

Dawson: Well...Last spring, if you'd come to me and just told me how you felt about Joey, it would have made things a hell of a lot easier. So that's all I'm trying to do.

Pacey: Dawson, you and I are friends. Friends. But sisters... Sisters are...

Dawson: Off limits?

Pacey: Yes! Sisters are off limits. They're like mothers, only pretty.

Dawson: I'm not asking for your permission, Pace. I'm just letting you know.

Pacey: So what are your plans?

Dawson: My plans?

Pacey: Yeah, to pursue my sister. What are you going to do?

Dawson: Nothing.

Pacey: Nothing?

Dawson: Mm-hmm.

Pacey: Well, what kind of plan is "nothing"?

Dawson: Well, I've just decided to let things play out. If there's one thing I learned after last spring, it's that some things can't be forced.

Pacey: So then your plan would be to not have a plan.

Dawson: Exactly.

Pacey: The Tao of Dawson is to do nothing. I've done nothing so far and we've already kissed. I figure the best thing I can do is just keep on doing nothing.

[Commercial Break]

[Scene: The Witter Family Vehicle. Pacey is sitting in the Passenger seat, while Gretchen is driving them to her old college apartment.]

Pacey: What's with the rush?

Gretchen: At this speed, I can get to school, grab my car and get out of there before dark.

Pacey: Your car hasn't been at school for months. All of a sudden you decided your friends have borrowed it for too long?

Gretchen: Friend. Well, um, actually... Ex-boyfriend.

Pacey: Nick has had your car this whole time? You know, I always liked that guy.

Gretchen: You don't know him.

Pacey: Nick and me? Dos amigos.

Gretchen: You sat with him for a couple of hours when I brought him home for Christmas.

Pacey: Yeah, so I know that he likes the Patriots, pretzels, and a good party. I know he'd rather sleep and sail than study. Plus the man has excellent taste in music. His favorite song is Freebird.

Gretchen: You just described yourself.

Pacey: Well, great men think alike.

Gretchen: Ha!

Pacey: I just think it's wonderful that the two of you will be able to get to spend some quality time together.

Gretchen: Does your sudden proclivity for my ex-boyfriend have anything to do with a certain fair-haired pal of yours?

Pacey: Who? Dawson? Nah. Why should I care about Dawson? You assured me that that kiss meant nothing. Even though, you know, it really didn't look like nothing. 'Cause, you know, it kind of went on a little bit long to be nothing. And I'm pretty sure he doesn't think it's nothing. But if you said it's nothing, it's nothing.

Gretchen: Dawson and I are just friends. That's it. Trust me.

Pacey: Ok. Guess you've earned my trust. This music doesn't entirely suck, it's...[He picks up the CD case] "Great tunes for Gretchen. From Dawson." That would be leery. So he made you a mix CD? Aw, how sweet. Did I ever mention that nick is not only smart, but also quite handsome? I mean, really, he's a good-looking guy. He works out, doesn't he?

[Scene: Dawson's house. Dawson and Jack are moving things around in one of the rooms, so they can paint it to get it ready for the new baby.]

Dawson: Hey, did you think it was weird when Andie was dating Pacey?

Jack: Not really. Why?

Dawson: 'Cause Pacey really doesn't like the idea of Gretchen and me.

Jack: Well, sure. I mean, she's his sister and you're his-- his close friend. I didn't really know Pacey when he hooked up with Andie. But if I had to think about you and Andie, you--let's not go there.

[Gale and Mitch come into the room.]

Mitch: Well, Dawson may have a sister before long. Then he'll understand.

Dawson: Or a brother. I find out in a couple hours, right?

Gale: Uh, well, no. Actually, honey, we've changed our mind again.

Mitch: I mean, should we really use technology to cheat what may be life's last great mystery?

Gale: Or is it anticlimactic to wait until the baby is born?

Mitch: Hmm.

Gale: Hmm.

Dawson: You know, whatever you guys decide is fine. Just let me know, so I can figure out what to do with the pink and blue paint that I have on hold.

Mitch: Good point.

Gale: Come on, we're going to decide in the car.

Dawson: Good luck.

[They leave and Jack opens the top drawer on a dresser so they can move it, and Dawson notices a letter in it and takes it out.]

Jack: What's that?

Dawson: Remember I told you I used to write Gretchen these silly little letters?

Jack: Yeah.

Dawson: This is the last one I wrote, one I never sent. [Laughs] oh, god, this is embarrassing. I'm all gushing and lovesick.

Jack: Uh-huh. Maybe you should say some of that to her, now.

Dawson: No. I told her how I feel.

Jack: Not like that, I bet.

Dawson: No, I told her like an adult.

Jack: Well, maybe if you acted more like a kid, you might be with her.

Dawson: Last time I acted like a kid with my feelings, I ended up trying to prove something in a boat race. Remember that?

Jack: Oh, yeah.

Dawson: Not my finest moment. Besides, she knows how I feel about her. You know, if...If it's meant to be, it'll be. If not, that's the way it goes.

Jack: Hmm. Zen and the art of dating. Congrats. I think you've created a new movement.

Dawson: Yeah.

[Scene: The Capeside Yacht Club. Joey is carrying a sign that reads “Closed for Renovations”, while Drue is sitting at the counter flipping through his little “Black Book.”]

Drue: Closed for renovation. You know, this free time presents sort of a steak or lobster dilemma. Now, do I go cheerleader or drama club chick tonight? What do you think?

Joey: Mmm. Flip a coin. Heads is bimbo, tails is skank.

Drue: Where's the love, huh?

Joey: After working with you for the last 6 days, I don't know. I guess I lost it.

Drue: How do you plan to observe your Sabbath?

Joey: Oh, a relaxing little experience known as researching my English term paper.

Drue: Let me guess. How to keep a boyfriend and your virginity or the many uses of the human hand.

Joey: Finally a subject you know all about.

Drue: Oh, very good, Joey. Very good. You see, that is what we refer to as a comeback or a retort. I believe in French it's riposte.

[Mrs. Valentine comes into the room carrying a date book.]

Mrs. Valentine: Good news, darling. Your father's spirit guide has allowed him to leave his crystals and meditation mat long enough to come to New York on business, and he wants to see you tonight.

Drue: And this is good news on what planet?

Mrs. Valentine: On the planet where child support payments are still being negotiated. Here's your bus ticket.

Drue: I don't suppose I have any choice in this matter?

Mrs. Valentine: Well, of course you do. You can sit up front near the driver or back near the restrooms.

[Mrs. Valentine hands him the ticket and leaves.]

Joey: Bon voyage.

Drue: Sorry to step on your exit line, but I don't think we finished here.

Joey: My station is closed down.

Drue: These need to go into the storeroom tonight.

[Points to the boxes of dishes.]

[Scene: The College campus. Pacey and Gretchen pull up in front of the house where Gretchen lived at on campus. There are people all over the place getting ready for parties.]

Pacey: This is definitely my kind of place.

Gretchen: It's a place you're going to see very little of. Remember, we get the car and we leave.

Pacey: It might be kind of difficult.

Gretchen: No, it won't.

Pacey: Well, if that's the car you plan on driving out of here, yes, it will.

[Points to the car in the driveway with it's hood open and missing 2 tires.]

Gretchen: That lying jerk. I can't believe I fell for his crap again.

Pacey: Don't you think you're being a little tough on the lying jerk? I'm sure there's an explanation for that.

Gretchen: Yeah, there always is.

[Nick comes out of the house with a woman which he hands a bag, and gives her a hug before she leaves.]

Nick: Gretchen! My god, you look beautiful.

Gretchen: You son of a bitch.

Nick: I can explain.

Gretchen: Hey, I don't want to hear it. All right? I just want my car back now, and I want to get as far away from you as possible.

Nick: I know I said everything was fine, but this morning when I checked, I noticed that the solenoid assembly was clogged, so—

Gretchen: Solenoid assembly?

Pacey: It's part of the carburetor. It draws air into the—

Gretchen: I know what the carburetor is, ok, guys? And I know you don't need to remove the tires to unclog it.

Nick: Remember all your road trips? Low tread. I knew I risked losing your trust. All right? And frankly, you can hate my guts all you want. And, yeah, it hurts. But not as much as if something happened to you. I couldn't live with that.

Pacey: Thanks for looking out for her, man.

Gretchen: Yeah. Nick Taylor is a renowned protector of women.

Nick: Her name's Laura Wolner. She's a junior geology major.

Gretchen: I don't really care.

Nick: She lives here.

Gretchen: That's her problem.

Nick: Except for tonight. All right? I asked her for a favor. She's going to go stay at her mom's house so that you can have her room. If you want to leave, we'll fix the car later and you're gone. Listen, since all of your old friends are going to be here tonight, I figured you'd be up late. Might be nice to have a comfortable place to crash.

Gretchen: God help me.

Nick: Laura's room is the first one on the left. By the time you get washed up, me and Pacey will have you a nice medium-rare veggie burger with your name on it.

Gretchen: You think you know me so well, don't you?

Nick: As well as any guy can. You like imported beer, Pacey?

Pacey: I'll, uh...

[Scene: Grams' House. Dawson is walking up to her house carrying a box of old clothing, when Grams and Mr. Brooks come outside.]

Mr. Brooks: See you tonight, Evelyn.

Grams: I can hardly wait, Arthur.

[He walks into Dawson as he passes.]

Mr. Brooks: Ah. If you value your life, not a word.

[He turns and leaves.]

Dawson: I--I thought you might be able to, uh... Give these clothes away to the church.

Grams: Oh, Dawson, thank you.

Dawson: So, uh... Are you two... Are you two dating?

Grams: Oh, Dawson. Please. At my age, one does not date.

Dawson: Well, it sounded like you were going to see him later on tonight.

Grams: We are simply having dinner at your parents' restaurant, and then we are going to Rialto 16 to see Almost Famous.

Dawson: Well, dinner and a movie on a Saturday night is pretty much a definition of a date.

Grams: Say, are you this protective of Jennifer?

Dawson: Uh... Jen is well-versed in the pitfalls and problems of relationships.

Grams: Although I have not felt this way since Jennifer's grandfather passed on, I assure you, I also am well-versed. Thank you for your concern, Dawson.

[Scene: The Capeside Yacht Club. Drue and Joey enter the store room carrying several boxes.]

Drue: You know what your problem is?

Joey: Drue, the only problem I have in my life right now is that I have to be around you. Fortunately, as soon as I put these dishes away, I am on break from my problem. [Drue tries to help he put the box onto the top shelf] Don't touch me, please! It's creepy enough to be in here with you. Fine. If you move those boxes...

[Drue grabs the boxes by the door and it closes behind him.]

Drue: We'll open it. Not a problem. [He tries to open the door and the handle comes off.] Ok? This could be a problem.

Joey: There's got to be another way out.

Drue: Oh, there's another way out. When the cleaning crew arrives. Monday morning.

[Commercial Break]

[Scene: The Capeside Yacht Club. Joey and Drue are still in the store room and Joey is banging on the door trying to get anyone's attention.]

Joey: Hello? Anyone there?

Drue: You're going to hurt yourself if you keep doing that.

Joey: I'm going to hurt you if you don't shut up.

[Joey goes into her purse and pulls something out.]

Drue: Going to freshen your face?

Joey: No. I'm going to pick the lock.

Drue: An eyebrow pencil.

Joey: You got a better idea?

Drue: What, do I look like Macgyver?

Joey: No. He was smart enough not to move a box which was propping open a door.

Drue: Well, you know what? If you would have just accepted my help, we wouldn't be here in the first place. Now I know why you're still a virgin. You have serious trust issues with men. Not to mention some rather dubious grooming habits.

Joey: What do you think you're doing?

Drue: I'm taking inventory of our rations. We have my Slim Jim to your 2 Altoids. We could have a snack and fresh breath.

Joey: If you try to touch me or my stuff one more time, I swear to god, I'm going to take this eyebrow pencil and put it through your heart. Am I being clear?

Drue: Crystal.

Joey: Good.

Drue: By the way, you should really try and clean out your brush occasionally.

[Scene: The College House. Nick and Pacey are outside sitting in the hot tub talking to each other.]

Nick: Imagine an environment where nearly the whole city is your age. Beer flows like tap water. Parties are ubiquitous and eternal. And the whole thing's paid for by cheap, long-term government loans.

Pacey: This is the life.

Nick: I know. Let's face it. High school sucks. Man was not created to spend 7 hours a day, 5 days a week crammed into a tiny desk. The whole system panders to the lowest common denominator. Standardized tests. Standardized courses.

Pacey: Standardized lunches.

Nick: Exactly. And that's why anyone who isn't standard doesn't fit in. College is a fresh start, you know? You get to be whoever you want to be.

[Gretchen walks up to the side of the hot tub.]

Gretchen: Why am I not surprised to see the two of you getting along?

Pacey: I like this guy, Gretchen.

Gretchen: 2 peas in a pod. More like 2 slackers in a tub.

Nick: Care to join us in the healing waters? It does wonders for the soul.

Gretchen: My soul is just fine.

Girl: Hey, Gretchen.

[The girl waves for Gretchen to join her.]

Nick: No offense, but I must say, all of her is fine.

Pacey: No offense taken. And now that you mention it, she can really use a guy like you in her life.

Nick: She doesn't have a guy in her life back home?

Pacey: Nope. I'm telling you, you should go for it, my friend.

[Scene: The Dawson house. Dawson and Jack are doing some painting in the baby's room. Jack is talking to Dawson, but Dawson is staring at the wall obliviously.]

Jack: 18 years apart? I mean, that's wild. When this kid graduates high school, you're going to be, like, 36. He's just-- well, he or she-- is just going to be beginning their life, and... Yours will be pretty much over. And you're not listening to a word that I'm saying, are you, Dawson?

Dawson: Uh...No. Sorry.

Jack: Oh, well. What's going on?

Dawson: I'm worried about grams. I'm afraid she's going to get her heart broken.

Jack: I thought her heart belonged to the lord.

Dawson: And possibly Mr. Brooks.

Jack: You got to be kidding me. Crotchety old Mr. Brooks? Are you sure about that?

Dawson: It's getting to be like on Golden Pond over there.

Jack: Hey, good for her. I mean, now she's got somebody to keep her company, to read with, build fires with. After all, she did say that "love is the hardest of woods."

Dawson: Brooks is sick, Jack. He's dying.

Jack: Oh, god. I don't-- I mean, after what happened with her husband, wh--how could she fall for somebody who's dying?

Dawson: Well, obviously she doesn't know. He hasn't told her.

Jack: Well, then you have to.

Dawson: Me?

Jack: Someone has to. If you don't, I will.

Dawson: If you could have seen how happy she was.

Jack: The only reason she's happy is because she doesn't know the truth.

Dawson: Well, maybe that's not such a bad thing.

Jack: Ok. You were happy before you found out about Pacey and Joey seeing each other. Now, would you have rather stayed in the dark or would you have rather someone come to you and told you the difficult truth at the beginning?

[Scene: The Store room. Joey and Drue are still locked in. Drue is sitting on a box and Joey is looking around.]

Drue: If I was the one in here with a sweater, I would share it.

Joey: Let me think about it. No.

Drue: Ok, but I want you to know if something happens to me, you have my permission to pursue whatever indelicate though life-sustaining tastes-just-like-chicken measures you see fit.

Joey: I see some cans up there. Maybe we can dig up something to eat.

[Joey starts climbing to get to the cans on the top shelf.]

Drue: You're going to fall and break your neck, at which point I am taking your sweater. Hey, I wonder who they're going to get to play you in the TV version of our ordeal, huh? Probably some former teen series idol who's trying to break into features.

Joey: Would you just shut up?

Drue: Ok. You go right ahead. I'm sure Lacey Chabert can't wait to cop an attitude and win the Emmy.

Joey: Ecch. We can't eat this. This expired, like, when I was born.

[Joey falls down and Drue catches her. He kisses her and she slugs him.]

Drue: Could have just said thanks!

[Scene: The College house. Nick and Gretchen are standing and talking to each other outside.]

Nick: Must be kind of tough out there, huh?

Gretchen: I have a life now. Now I have friends, have a job, great place by the water.

Nick: Come on. You don't miss it just a little bit?

Gretchen: This? No way.

Nick: I don't believe that.

Gretchen: It's true.

Nick: There's that thing.

Gretchen: What thing?

Nick: You know. That little thing you do when you're hiding something. You stick out your chin.

Gretchen: I do not.

Nick: Yes, you do. You know what always drove me crazy about you, Gretchen? That little line right there on your chin.

Gretchen: It's not going to work, Nick.

Nick: What?

Gretchen: Don't play, "I'm just a sensitive boy who needs to be understood" with me. I'm not going to go upstairs to see your guitar, so don't ask.

[Pacey comes up to join them.]

Pacey: It is so good to see you guys together. Honestly. Hey, can you believe that this woman is still single, considering what an amazing catch she is?

Gretchen: Ok, before you try and show all my teeth to prove what good breeding stock I am, you'll have to excuse me.

[Gretchen leaves the two of them alone.]

Pacey: You know she's crazy about you, right? She talked about you the whole ride up here. I mean, it's like the two of you were meant to be together. So whatever happened?

Nick: Our lives just moved in 2 separate directions. [Nick points to a woman who is waving to Pacey.] I think I see someone that wants to move in your direction.

Pacey: I don't think that'd be such a grand idea.

Nick: Her name's Christie. She likes horses, water sports, and back rubs from guys just like you, buddy. You can't go wrong.

Pacey: Oh, but I can go wrong. There is someone back at home that would think that that's a very, very bad idea.

Nick: That certain someone here? I don't think so. And I am definitely not going to say anything. [Nick throws him his keys] Second room upstairs to the left. Condoms are in the cigar box next to the futon. I'm going to go talk to your sister.

Pacey: Nick—

Nick: Hey, don't mention it, man. Guys like me and you, we got to look out for each other.

[Scene: Grams House. Grams is in the kitchen when Dawson knocks on the door and comes in. Grams is all dressed up for her non-date.]

Grams: Oh, Dawson! Come in, come in.

Dawson: Hi. I'm, uh... On my way-- on my way over to go, uh, go to Mr. Brooks', but I just-- I--wow!

Grams: What? What is it?

Dawson: You--you're-- you look...Beautiful.

Grams: Oh, thank you. I... Well, I... I hope this dress isn't too much. Wouldn't want anyone to think we were dating.

Dawson: Um...Getting into a new relationship can be intoxicating.

Grams: I noticed you aren't bearing any clothes for the church, and I know that you know Jennifer is away at a fishing concert.

Dawson: Uh, Phish broke up. It's widespread panic.

Grams: Hmm. "I know a bank where the wild thyme blows, "where oxlips and the nodding violet grows." [Chuckles] Oh, dear, now... What was it you wanted to talk about, Dawson?

Dawson: I just wanted to say have a great time tonight.

Grams: I know he's sick.

Dawson: You do?

Grams: Isn't that what you were trying to tell me?

Dawson: [Sighs] So he told you?

Grams: Of course not. Arthur Brooks wouldn't just come right out and tell someone that.

Dawson: Well, then how did you know?

Grams: I've been a nurse for 47 years and a woman a few years longer than that.

Dawson: But if you know, how can you start something with him?

Grams: It's very simple. We laugh together, we share the same interests, we look at life the same way. Do you know how hard it is to find a friend like that, Dawson?

Dawson: Yeah, I think I do. Um...I also know how hard it can be when it doesn't last.

Grams: A moment, a single moment of true joy is more powerful than a lifetime of sorrow.

[Scene: The College house. Pacey is walking when Gretchen comes up to join him as he walks outside. ]

Pacey: Let me tell ya. Your ex puts the "A" in hole. That man is just a world-class jerk.

Gretchen: I know that, Pacey. I tried to tell you.

Pacey: Well, I guess we've both had enough of him for tonight, right?

Gretchen: You don't need to protect me.

Pacey: He's the reason you left school, isn't he?

Gretchen: I am the reason that I left school.

Pacey: So what happened? What did he do to you?

Gretchen: Nothing I didn't allow to happen. Look, it's my fault, too, you know. I can't just blame him and neither should you.

Pacey: For what?

Gretchen: I got pregnant. I had a miscarriage.

Pacey: I--I'm sorry, Gretch. I would not have been trying to force the two of you back together. I am...Sorry. So how did he react when he found out?

Gretchen: He doesn't know. I didn't want to interrupt his plans to sleep with half the theta house.

Pacey: What a dick. What a dick! I can't believe I was hanging out with that guy thinking how cool he was. I am gonna—

Gretchen: no, no, you are not! Ok, I am not a victim here, Pacey. And I don't want him to know. You know, nobody knows about this except Dawson.

Pacey: You told Dawson Leery before you told me?

Gretchen: He's my friend.

Pacey: I'm your brother!

Gretchen: With a very specific idea of how a sister is supposed to behave. Look, I left school to work on who I want to be. You know, I can't try fitting that into everybody else's idea of what that is.

Pacey: You know? Fair enough. At least you now know who Nick really is.

Gretchen: Pacey, everything that you liked about him I still like about him, too.

[Nick comes out to join them]

Nick: Hey. Hey. Did you miss me?

[Nick and Gretchen go back inside, while Pacey just watches them.]

[Commercial Break]

[Scene: Mr. Brooks House. Dawson is cutting together some of the scenes of his movie, while Mr. Brooks is getting ready.]

Dawson: I don't understand why you would want to cut the scene before it's over.

Mr. Brooks: Nobody's saying anything.

Dawson: Look at your face! Look at that expression. And that says more than any words ever could.

Mr. Brooks: You're developing a pretty good eye, Mr. Leery. Obviously you're hanging out with the right people these days.

Dawson: It would seem so.

Mr. Brooks: Before you run off, um... I wondered if you could help me with something.

Dawson: Uh, sure.

Mr. Brooks: Evelyn Ryan and I have been spending a lot of time together lately, and I have grown rather fond of her. I'd like her to know that. So, uh... [He takes out some earrings] Do you think it's too much?

Dawson: Um...I'm not the person to talk to about that.

Mr. Brooks: What's the matter? Bother you that 2 adults are keeping company?

Dawson: No, I just--I don't think it's my place to give advice about this.

Mr. Brooks: Is that because a dying man just told you that he's fond of a woman who's like a grandmother to you?

Dawson: Do you have any idea what she went through with her late husband?

Mr. Brooks: Uh-huh, actually, I do.

Dawson: Well, then—

Mr. Brooks: If I care about her, how could I put her through all that again, hmm?

Dawson: [Sighs] exactly.

Mr. Brooks: One thing worse than the pain of loss is the aching void of inaction. She's not the kind of person who can live with that. She knows I'm sick.

Dawson: So...She knows, and you know she knows, and yet neither one of you have said anything about it.

Mr. Brooks: No need. When you get to the end of the race, it's both obvious and inevitable. Make no mistake about it, kid, god intends to kill us all. You'll find that, uh, you don't have to have your life dictated by the cosmos. You fall in love with the wrong woman, you tell fate to piss off, you don't like its plans for you. Sure...Heartache to be had, but it's a small price to pay for living and dying on your own terms.

Dawson: Give her the earrings.

Mr. Brooks: Thank you, kid.

[Scene: The College house. Nick and Gretchen are sitting on the couch talking to each other as a party goes on all around them.]

Nick: You ever think about me?

Gretchen: Rarely.

Nick: Chin.

Gretchen: Occasionally.

Nick: I think about you.

Gretchen: Yeah?

Nick: Remember that time we locked ourselves in my room and studied for that astronomy mid-term?

Gretchen: [Laughs] we failed the test the next day.

Nick: Yes, we did. But it was worth it, wasn't it?

Gretchen: We've had a lot of good times together. "Had" being the operative word. We are past tense.

Nick: No, we're old friends. And the best thing about old friends is that they know you. They know what makes you tick.

Gretchen: There are a lot of things you don't know about me, Nick. A lot's happened to me since I left.

Nick: I know you've gotten more beautiful. Do you want to come up to my room and talk about the rest?

Gretchen: You're drunk.

Nick: You're gorgeous.

Gretchen: Do you ever change?

Nick: You know who I am. I mean, isn't that why you came? And don't tell me it was to pick up your car, because we both know that's not true. You've come a long distance. Don't you want to go the rest of the way?

[He stands up and he and takes her hand and they go upstairs while Pacey just watches them go.]

[Scene: The store room. Joey is pacing while Drue is sitting down holding a can up to his blackened eye.]

Joey: You're supposed to—

Drue: back off!

Joey: I was just trying to help.

Drue: Yeah. Well, if I get any more help from you, I'll be spending my freshman year of college in traction.

Joey: You know if anyone should be upset, it should be me.

Drue: What? You tried to kill me!

Joey: You tried to kiss me!

Drue: I saved your life, ok? I was just acting on the moment.

Joey: Yeah, well, so was I.

Drue: How'd a pretty girl like you get so damn mean?

Joey: I'm not mean.

Drue: Are you kidding? The busboys are terrified of you. They call you "el Toro."

Joey: Really? Well, you know, when you're used to living on your own, you learn how to take care of yourself, and I guess you develop a little bit of a thick outer shell.

Drue: And a pretty decent right cross. You know, at least your father's in prison. Having to spend time with my dad is like being in prison.

Joey: I thought your dad was this wealthy businessman who—

Drue: yeah, who seemed like the coolest guy in the world until the day I discovered him fervently studying the kama sutra on my mother's new Mexican tile kitchen floor with someone who was most definitely not my mother.

[Joey comes and sits next to him taking her sweater off and putting it over both their laps.]

Drue: Bless you.

Joey: Just keep your hands where I can see them.

Drue: So where's your beau this evening? Is he going to be frantically checking hospitals for you?

Joey: He's on a road trip with his sister.

Drue: How do you stay in a relationship with someone who is so different from you?

Joey: We're not that different.

Drue: Oh, please. You're responsible and reasonable. He's reckless and rash.

Joey: Yeah, but part of his recklessness is that he's constantly surprising me. And part of his rashness is that he's intensely passionate. Those differences are important. They make for a richer relationship.

Drue: Maybe in high school. But last I heard, Harvard wasn't admitting the rash boyfriends of candidates just to keep the world's cutest couple together.

Joey: How would you like a broken nose to go along with that black eye?

Drue: Lighten up.

[Scene: Nick's bedroom. Nick and Gretchen come up to the room, and it has several candles already burning throughout the room.]

Gretchen: Looks like you were expecting company.

Nick: I missed you, Gretchen.

Gretchen: I can't believe I'm doing this.

Nick: Why? You knew this was going to happen. You've been thinking about this since you left. I know you, Gretchen. I know how you think.

Gretchen: Well, what am I thinking right now?

Nick: You're thinking that my arms feel amazing around you. That I fit you like a puzzle piece that's been missing. That you'll lose yourself in me the rest of the night and never look back.

[He takes her over to the bed and lies her down and she sits down next to him and they kiss and lie back.]

Gretchen: Mmm...Ahh... [She stops him and pushes him back] You know, that used to be enough.

Nick: I'm what they told you to stay away from, huh? The cookie jar high on the shelf. The person that's wrong for you. But, see, that's why a girl like you... Wants a guy like me.

Gretchen: You're totally right. And do you know what I just realized? I'm not that girl anymore.

[She looks over and he has fallen asleep.]

Gretchen: Nick? Nick? Thank you, Nick Taylor.

[Commercial Break]

[Scene: Outside the college house. Pacey is finishing up fixing Gretchen's car when she comes out to join him.]

Pacey: Hey. I've finished up the work on the car. And I found your tires. They were just on the side of the house. All you needed was a couple of flats patched. The treads were fine.

Gretchen: Thank you.

Pacey: I fixed the car. I just wish I could do the same thing for your life.

Gretchen: Pacey—

Pacey: I don't understand why you'd fall for such a self-centered, egocentric jerk like nick. You know, I know that you were a cheerleader all during high school, and I know that you always had the good grades and the good behavior and the good boyfriends, and I can understand that maybe you just got a little tired of being good all the time, and I understand that people get tempted. But why this guy? He's an ass! [Sighs] I guess it's kind of my fault. I pushed you into the guy.

Gretchen: This is not your fault.

Pacey: Well, it is kinda my fault. I wanted you to be with him. I wanted you to be with somebody that I understood. I wanted you to be with somebody who was maybe a little bit more like me.

Gretchen: You are nothing like nick.

Pacey: Well, regardless... You deserve someone who's going to listen to you and commit to you. You deserve someone who's going to make you the absolute center of their universe. You deserve somebody—

Gretchen: someone like Dawson?

Pacey: Oh...Ha ha. That's not what I said.

Gretchen: That's what you meant. Nothing happened last night, Pacey. It almost did until--until I realized why I came here.

Pacey: Well, didn't you come here to see nick?

Gretchen: No. I came to say good-bye to nick. And more importantly, good-bye to a part of myself that I've always struggled with. And do you know where I got the strength to say good-bye? From you. Starting when they're little girls, sisters look to their brothers for cues on how they should be treated. And--and you're right. I deserve so much better than nick. And my heart knows that because I have a brother who treats me so well.

Pacey: So...Wait. Hold on a second. Does this mean that you also realize that you need better music in your life? Because if that's the case, I have this Pink Floyd CD that I think you'll love—

Gretchen: that's ok. There's a certain CD mix that I want to listen to.

Pacey: Ok.

Gretchen: See you at home.

Pacey: Yes. See you back there.

[She pulls away from him as he watches her go.]

[Scene: The baby's room. Dawson and Jack are busy painting around the windows and the corners of the room.]

Dawson: Jack, do you believe in inevitability?

Jack: You mean, do I think I busted my shoulder because of fate?

Dawson: Yeah. Do you ever wonder if you could've changed what happened?

Jack: You have no idea how many times I have thought about that one. I mean, what if I would have caught the ball differently? You know, hit the ground differently? What if I would have brushed my teeth 3 seconds longer that morning, arriving to practice 2 seconds later?

Dawson: And the answer?

Jack: The answer is I don't know. I'm sick of thinking about it. Thinking about it is more debilitating than the injury.

Dawson: Brooks is dying... And he's actively pursuing a relationship with grams who knows, but doesn't seem to mind.

Jack: Well, maybe he finds strength in taking action, and maybe she finds comfort in her religion. I mean, the arbitrary nature of life and love, you know, it can be frightening. Everybody has their own way of coping with it. Even you.

Dawson: What does that mean?

Jack: Well, don't you think it's possible, what's driving this, uh, this Tao of yours is nothing more than fear?

Dawson: I'm just trying not to make the same mistakes I've made in the past.

Jack: Has it ever occurred to you, san-san, that maybe they're not mistakes at all. Maybe this is exactly where you're supposed to be at this moment in time. With a girl that you wanted way before Joey potter, holding a letter that expresses exactly how you feel about her.

[Scene: The Store room. Joey suddenly wakes up. Drue and Joey are leaning against a box. Joey fell asleep leaning on Drue's shoulder.]

Joey: Oh, I thought it was just a nightmare.

Drue: Good morning to you, too.

Joey: Did you actually sleep?

Drue: I couldn't. Someone was sawing some serious lumber.

Joey: I do not snore.

Drue: You could have laid waste to an entire national forest.

Joey: I'm surprised I could even sleep. You aware of the 24-hour antiperspirant?


Joey: What's that buzzing?

Drue: What's what buzzing?

Joey: There's something buzzing.

Drue: Go back to sleep. You're dreaming.

Joey: It's in your pocket. What is that?

[She reaches into his pocket and pulls out his cell phone.]

Drue: Hey! Hey, I'd like a dinner and a movie before we get to that.

Joey: You've had this in your pocket the whole time?

Drue: Oh, yeah. I forgot.

Joey: Hello? Yes, we're in the basement storage room. You can talk to him when you get down here. What's left of him.

Drue: We're saved!

Joey: You orchestrated this whole thing!

Drue: Now, why would I want to do something like that?

Joey: Because you are a sick, twisted, pathological little pervert.

Drue: Do you really think I'd go through all this trouble just to have you fall asleep on my shoulder?

Joey: Well, how do I know what you were doing while I was sleeping?

Drue: I resent that. I was a complete gentleman. I absolutely did not peek down your shirt at your eggshell-colored, 34c, maiden form, wire-rimmed bra with the little cute pink bow in the front clasp.

[Mrs. Valentine opens the door and comes in.]

Drue: Mother, thank god!

Mrs. Valentine: My god! What have you done to my son?

Joey: Ask him. It was all his doing.

Mrs. Valentine: Oh, you're actually going to suggest that my son would rather be locked in a closet with you than spend the weekend with his father?

Joey: [realizing everything] I'll see you at school, Drue.

[Scene: Gretchen and Pacey's place. Gretchen pulls up to the house and walks over to the mailbox, where she pulls out a letter and begins to read it . It is the letter that Dawson wrote all those years ago. We hear Dawson's voice as she reads it. The scene fades from Her to Dawson, to Grams and Mr. Brooks on a bench together, to Pacey and Joey sitting wrapped up in each other on her pier, and back to her driving.]

Dawson: Dear Gretchen, I really enjoyed talking to you in your room today. Try not to be nervous about starting high school. I know you're going to find people who understand you. There's something that I didn't get a chance to tell you. There's someone truly special in my life that I can't stop thinking about. She's unlike anyone I've ever met. Smart and funny and beautiful, and just knowing that she's in my life has given me this constant fluttering that keeps me awake at night. When I think about who I can talk to about this, who will understand. The only person that comes to mind is you. And that's a problem, because you are the one that I feel this way about. I think about you constantly, every little thing you do. The Elvis Costello sticker you put in your spiral notebook, the way your bangs have grown out every day now for 6 months until Monday when you were finally able to put it all in a ponytail. And today when you invited me to stay and talk to you after Pacey left. It occurred to me that you must think about me, too. If I tried to tell anyone else, they would say that you and I are impossible, that our lives are too different, that we could never be right for each other. But we understand each other and we care about each other. And years from now, I believe that we still will. Your friend forever. Love, Dawson.

[She pulls up to Dawson's house where he is outside putting away some of the cleaning supplies. He turns to see Gretchen pull up, and he watches her walk up to him with a smile on her face and a tear in her eye.]

Dawson: What took you so long?

Gretchen: I had a few things to do first..

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