A/N: This is an AU fic I guess. It's set... around late 2002. Rory and Dean have never been a couple. Rory and Jess have never been a couple but are good friends and sometimes there's a little harmless flirting going on there. hehe. The main difference in this fic is..... Jess and Dean are *gasp* Good Friends!

** Disclaimer: I do not own any of the characters of Gilmore Girls. If I were that all powerful then Jess would be staying put! So, in summation... Please don't sue me!**

The hip bone's connected to the…thigh bone and the thigh bone's connected to the… to the…

"Luke, what's the thigh bone connected to?" Lorelai frowned.

"The knee bone." He sighed filling up a customers coffee cup. "Why?"

"No reason." She smiled, sipping her own cup of coffee.

The thigh bone's connected to the…knee bone and the knee bone's connected to the…

"Damnit." She sighed.

"What now?" He asked, throwing a dishtowel over his shoulder and leaning on the chair opposite her.

"Nothing. Dem Dry Bones." She muttered to herself.

He frowned at her and shook his head slightly.

"Sure, whatever you say. Can I get you something to eat or are you just going to sit there and mumble like an old drunk?" He asked.

"Well, since you put it so nicely… the latter." She grinned.

"Great." He sighed and walked away.

Rory pushed open the door of the diner and shook the snow off of her feet.

"Hey, you're late." Smiled Lorelai.

"The bus had to go slower, 'cos of the snow." She said breathlessly, taking her scarf and coat off and sitting opposite Lorelai. "Gimme."

"Hey!" Lorelai scrunched her face up into a playful pout as Rory grabbed her coffee cup.

"I just want to hold it, my hands are frozen." She smiled. "Luke, can I have a cup of coffee." She called across the diner.

"Sure. Or… I could get you some hot cocoa?" He offered, trying to find an alternative to coffee.

"Thanks, but I'm in the mood for coffee."

"Are you ever not?" He said, rolling his eyes.

Lorelai and Rory grinned at each other.

"Ok, I love you. You're beautiful… but give me my coffee back." Smiled Lorelai, reaching out for the cup.

"But my hands…" Rory said, flashing her baby blues at Lorelai.

"Hey, that doesn't work on me." Lorelai said, narrowing her eyes at Rory. "I got my own set, they repel the power of yours."

Rory pouted a little and pushed the cup back over the table to Lorelai.

"Hey, where are you going?" Luke called out.

Lorelai and Rory both looked up to see Jess leaving the diner.

"I'll be back later."

"You're closing tonight!"

Jess waved his hand once without turning around, indicating to Luke that he had heard the reminder.

He stepped down on to the sidewalk and started to cross the street.

"Jess!"

He turned around and smiled slightly.

"Hey."

"You headin' to Gypsy's?" Asked Dean.

"Yeah, you?"

"I have to stop by Doose's first and pick up my paycheck." He sighed.

"Sounds fun." Chuckled Jess sarcastically.

"Yeah well, you're coming too, so you can wipe that smile off of your face."

"I never said I was coming into the market." Said Jess, shoving his hands in his pockets.

"It was implied by 'wanna get together after school and work on your bike?'" Dean pointed out.

"I never imply." Jess smiled. "I say what I mean. If I didn't say I was coming into Doose's then I'm not coming into Doose's." He said, shaking his head.

"He'll be too busy getting my pay check to say anything to you."

"Not happening man." He laughed at Dean's persistence.

"You're such an ass." Sighed Dean as they reached the market.

"Keep it up bag boy, I never said I wouldn't cut the break lines on your bike by 'mistake'." Jess said raising an eyebrow at Dean.

Dean rolled his eyes and laughed quietly as he entered the market.

*****


Rory looked up at the sound of knocking on the door.

"Mom." She called, returning to her homework.

"You get it." Lorelai called back.

"No… I'm busy." She shouted.

"Me too."

Rory looked towards the kitchen.

"Mom, it's Microwave popcorn."

"Yes, and it says on the bag that you have to stay and watch."

Rory sighed and reluctantly got off of the couch. She straightened her tank top and pajama bottoms and plodded over to the door.

Jess was leaning against the doorframe, holding a book out to her.

"You're late." She smiled slightly and took it.

"Oh. Well then, please accept my deepest apologies." He said mockingly.

"We'll see. 'Atop An Underwood'?" She laughed softly.

"Trust me."

"Again? You think I'm some kind of idiot?"

"You'd be doing yourself a disservice if you didn't read it."

"Ok, alright. But if you're wrong…"

"I'm not." He smiled and she nodded. "Nothing for me?" He asked.

"Nope, I have to finish reading it tonight. I'll bring it to Luke's tomorrow."

"You know what happens if you don't?" He smiled playfully.

"I know, I know. I have to watch 'Glorious'." She sighed.

"The guy is a genius." Jess insisted.

"If you say so."

"I do. I gotta go, I'm…"

"Closing. I know." She nodded.

"Remember the book." He said as he started to leave.

"I will." She smiled and waved.

Rory closed the door slowly and smiled, looking at the book he'd given her.

"Who was that?" Asked Lorelai, carrying the popcorn into the living room.

"Jess, dropping off a book." She said, following and taking a handful.

"What book?" Lorelai frowned. "'Atop An Underworld'. What is that, like…. Buffy?"

"It's 'Atop an Underwood'." Rory chuckled and put the book on the coffee table.

*****


Dean sat in the Diner tapping his fork lightly on the table.

"Hey."

He looked up at Jess and sighed.

"I said go away."

"Way to look desperate." Laughed Jess, putting a cup off coffee in front of Dean.

"Jess, she's going to be here any minute." Said Dean, anxiously looking around.

"Yeah, I know. When we take her arrival times for the past week, add them together and divide by 5 we can presume that Rory Gilmore will be walking through that door at 4:32pm exactly." He teased.

"Jess, I swear to god…" Started Dean.

"Hey." They both looked over as Rory entered the diner. Jess looked at his watch.

"4:32pm." He said quietly to Dean. "Damn I'm good!"

"Get lost Jess." Dean said under his breath.

"I'm going, I'm going." He laughed.

"Hey Rory." Dean smiled, standing up.

"Hey."

"Uh… can I get you some coffee?" He asked, pulling a chair out for her.

"Sure." She giggled, sitting down. "Thanks."

"No problem." Dean looked over and Jess and nodded and Jess gave him a thumbs up. Rory didn't see.

"Something… wrong?" She frowned, wriggling out of her coat and pulling her hat off.

"No, no." He shook his head. "I'm fine. Are you, good… I mean… can I get you something?"

"No." She laughed softly. "Dean, you're… acting weird."

"I'm fine!" He nodded.

"Ok." She frowned.

"Here you go. One coffee. Can I get you something to eat?" Asked Jess.

"Um… no. I'm good." Said Dean.

"Same here." Rory nodded.

"Are you're sure? 'Cos I made a club sandwich for myself the other day, and let me tell you…"

"Jess…" Dean glared at him.

"I didn't get to tell you about the mustard." Jess said, trying to keep a straight face.

"I think we'll survive."

"Ok then." Jess smiled and walked away.

Dean looked back to Rory who had a puzzled expression on her face.

"So, Rory…" He started nervously.

"Dean…" She smiled slightly.

"I was thinking… there's this film I heard about and…"

"Rory! Oh my god, I've been looking for you all over… Well… ok, I haven't been looking…" Said Lorelai, closing the diner door behind her.

Dean tried to hide his disappointment.

"Oooh, coffee…" Lorelai grinned picking up Rory's cup.

"Hey!"

"Share, sweetie, share. Have I not taught you anything?!" Lorelai frowned.

Rory sat openmouthed as Lorelai drank half of her coffee.

"So, what are we talking about?" She smiled.

"A movie…?" Said Rory uncertainly, looking at Dean.

"Ooh, good. That reminds me, there was this movie I was reading about. There's this guy… and he has some kind of… disease and he can't really leave his home, and then one day this woman comes to his door and…"

"Yeah, that's the one I was telling her about." Said Dean, forcing a smile.

"Cool. So, I was thinking we'd go?" She asked Rory.

"Yay, movie night." Grinned Rory. "Don't forget the red vines this time."

"Brownies promise. Or was it Brownies honor?" Lorelai frowned. "Nope… it's scouts honor."

"What does it matter, you were none of the above." Smiled Rory, finishing her coffee.

"I know. The uniforms weren't my color." Pouted Lorelai. "Ready to go?"

"You're leaving?" Dean asked.

"Sorry." Rory sighed apologetically. "Thanks for the coffee though."

"No problem." He said, giving her a faint smile as she stood up and picked up her coat.

"Bye Dean." Lorelai said cheerfully as they left.

When they were gone Dean let his shoulders sag and his face fall.

"Aw, Man…" Jess came over and patted Dean on the shoulder.

"Please don't start." Sighed Dean.

"I didn't say anything." He said defensively. "But…" He whistled and shook his head. "That sucked."

"Yeah, I was there. I noticed." Said Dean despondently.

"But hey, there's always tomorrow?" Jess said supportively.