|Everything In Between
Author: LostInLost18 PM
Unseen/extended scenes I'd like to have seen in Friends. Chapter 11 - Chandler goes to see Richard after proposing to Monica.Rated: Fiction K+ - English - Friendship/Family - Chapters: 11 - Words: 13,041 - Reviews: 46 - Favs: 7 - Follows: 8 - Updated: 01-19-12 - Published: 08-14-11 - id: 7286084
|A+ A- Full 3/4 1/2 Expand Tighten|
Everything In Between
A Friends Fanfic
Title: Look After You
Spoilers for: Episode 3:13 'TOW Monica and Richard Are Just Friends.
Characters Mentioned/Featured: Rachel & Joey.
Summary: Joey reads more of Little Women and crumbles when Beth dies.
A/n: This is a new thing I'm trying. Aiming to post one of these a day if I can think of an unseen moment I'd like to have seen on the show. If you can think of anything I can post, leave the idea in a review and I'll write it, crediting you of course.
L o o k A f t e r Y o u
She walks in, Monica long gone to bed, with the intention of getting a glass of water, and sees him clutching the book, his knees drawn to his chest like he's a little boy. There's always been something so childlike and precious about Joey, and seeing him vulnerable and frightened like this tugs at her heartstrings.
"Joey?" she questions, her voice nervous. "You okay?"
"Beth does die," he moans, rocking back and forth on the couch. "You were right."
In that moment, she wishes she wasn't right. Finding Joey so emotionally attached to something that isn't food is a breath of fresh air, but more than that, it's quite endearing. His fingers mark the page he's just been reading, although the book itself is draped across his lap, and she can see the raw emotion in his eyes, like he wants to cry but can't.
"I got the book out of the freezer 'cause I wanted to finish," he explains, as she sits beside him, watching him tentatively. "But then Beth got sicker and sicker and then she…."
He can't finish his sentence. He starts to tremble, like he's lost a friend, and she finds herself unable to formulate a single word of comfort.
Because she knows she was this inconsolable the first time she read this book too, and all her mom could think to tell her was that it wasn't real, that it was purely fictitious. But young minds don't want to know that. Young minds want some shred of comfort – however meaningless – that there is hope, that what they've just read couldn't possibly be true in any sort of reality, much less a fictitious one.
In truth, fiction can sometimes be harsher than reality, teaching us lessons that often resonate much deeper than any lesson life throws at us.
She wraps an arm around him, finding he folds so easily. His head rests against her chest – she can feel each shaky breath his body draws in and then expels – and his arms wraps around her waist. She holds him for a few moments, wishing she could tell him something comforting – anything – but she doesn't want to lie to him, pretend that life never imitates art. With innocence, comes naivety, and whilst he's always possessed a little of both, she knows there's something very pure about him she's always found very endearing.
In between his various meaningless flings, and the immature jokes he shares with Chandler (sometimes Ross), and the vehement declarations there is no greater pleasure on earth than food – and sex – there's a side to him , when revealed, showed him in quite a mature and sensitive light.
She can't help but smile at the fact that he's opened up to her in a way he'd never dare to in front of Chandler and Ross.
They've shared something over the course of reading their respective books, and bonded as friends. He's held her when she's been sad over Ross, made her laugh with his cheap pick-up lines, been there for her when she's needed him most, been a friend to lean on in difficult times, and above all else, has been a true friend.
And though neither of them are what they'd call book smart, they could certainly write the book on how to be a good friend.
"How can you read this so many times?" he wonders aloud, sitting up. "It's the most depressing thing since…I dunno, foods that have the word diet on them. Now those are depressing!"
She has to smile. Trust Joey to link books to food.
"I know, but doesn't the fact Jo stayed with her until the end show how strong a bond they had?"
He considers it, the devastation still on his face.
"I guess so," he eventually concedes.
"Want me to put the book back in the freezer?" she asks, rubbing his shoulder comfortingly.
"Okay," he agrees, handing her the book.
And for the second time, she finds herself putting a book in the confinements of the freezer.
But she doesn't mind – because it's Joey.
And she can't help but think about The Shining, a book she never thought she'd find herself reading and enjoying.
A book which, as she recalls, is currently residing in the freezer just to the left of where Little Women resides.