Thursday, October 12th.
"But Kelso, I don't like the library. It's boring and it has a weird smell and we spent all day yesterday there!" Fez complained as he followed Kelso out of the Hub doors and onto the side walk.
They were arguing about what to do with the rest of their day. Kelso was lobbying for the library (so he could continue to stalk Brooke) but Fez wanted to go to Jerry's Ice Cream Parlor in the Point Place mall.
"I told you Fez, I'm trying to get Brooke to go on a second date with me," Kelso informed him.
Fez rolled his eyes. Kelso had been obsessing over this girl for weeks now and he was getting sick of it. He missed the days where he had his friend all to himself, before Brooke had entered into their lives and ruined everything.
"Who cares about Brooke," he responded jealously, folding his arms across his chest and standing his ground.
Brooke, Brooke, Brooke, it was all he heard about these days.
Fez didn't go around talking about his wife all day long. He suppressed the urge and pushed his feelings deep-deep down, where they belonged… Which is exactly what Kelso should be doing with Brooke, if you asked him.
"Man, I don't care," Kelso brushed it off, but his true feelings were obvious.
Fez had heard all about his friend's date with the librarian at the drive-in's the weekend prior. They'd shared a kiss in the front seat of Kelso's van during the scariest part of the movie, only to have Brooke friend zone him the next day.
He'd spent the entire week following, trying to get out of the friend zone, but hanging around the library all day wasn't helping, and Fez refused to spend another second in that dusty- smelly old building.
"I just don't get it… We had a good time the other night and I know she enjoyed kissing me, cause I'm an excellent kisser - just ask any of the other girls I've made it with! Then she goes and tells me she just wants to be friends? Something's up Fez…" Kelso trailed off as if trying to work out the mystery.
It didn't look like they were going to the mall for ice-cream anytime soon, so Fez shoved his hands in the pockets of his jacket to keep warm and leaned his back against the brick wall of the Hub.
"There's gotta be something wrong with her," Kelso continued with a frown on his face.
Fez groaned. "Or maybe there's something wrong with you!" He exclaimed, frustrated.
"No, it's definitely her man…" Kelso responded but Fez barely heard him.
A flash of blonde hair and a familiar figure had distracted him.
Pushing off the wall, he squinted his eyes to get a better look at the bus stop across the main road where a blonde girl had just gotten off the bus and caught his eye.
It was hard to tell from where he was standing, but the blonde girl looked almost exactly like his wife Laurie, but she was too far away, and his eyes were having trouble focusing. By the time he had gotten a clearer image, the girl had collected her two suitcases from the bus driver and was waving down a taxi in short-shorts and a belly top.
When a taxi pulled up next to her, the mysterious blonde turned her body in Fez's direction, proving his suspicions right.
The girl across the road was in-fact Laurie Forman, back from Chicago.
"Fez?" Kelso's voice broke Fez out of his trance and brought him back to reality. "What are you looking at?" He questioned, turning to look in the direction Fez had been staring.
"It's Laurie, that jezebel!" Fez informed him and took off.
Laurie was loading her bags in the back of the taxi when Fez began crossing the Hub car park and heading towards her.
"Laurie!" He shouted, stuck on the opposite side of the road as cars zoomed by him. By the time it was safe to cross, his wife was already inside the taxi, heading off to her next destination.
He had just missed her, but he was pretty sure he knew where she'd be heading.
"So, Laurie's back," Kelso stated the obvious a moment later, after appearing at Fez's side again. "Been awhile hey?" he slapped a hand over Fez's shoulder.
It was true, the last time they'd heard from Laurie had been when she'd made an appearance at Vanstock. Where she had told Fez, their marriage didn't mean anything to her and ordered him to leave her alone.
Since then he'd attempted to contact her multiple times and every-time he'd been sent straight to the answering machine. He'd informed her (through voice mail), about the agent from immigration who was coming to verify that their marriage was legitimate and begged her to come back to Point Place for the home visit - to save him from being deported.
He'd given up hope the last time he'd called, and some other man had answered. He'd been laughed at when he asked to speak to his wife Laurie, and then hung up on.
But she was in town now, he'd seen her with his own eyes and he knew where she was going next.
Could it be possible she'd come back for him?
He needed to know.
"We need to go to the Forman's," he told Kelso.
Kelso whined. "But the lib-"
Eric, Donna and Hyde were hanging around the driveway of the Forman property. Eric was bouncing the basketball towards the net while Donna and Hyde stood back towards the kitchen patio and watched.
"I can't believe Red is being so strict with you and Jackie," Eric heard Donna say to Hyde as he dunked the ball through the hoop.
Eric couldn't help but laugh at the statement.
"Are you kidding?" He wondered as he walked back over to his two friends by the porch. "You're surprised Red Forman is being strict? Might I remind you of how he reacted when you and I got engaged?"
"That was different," Donna started. "And I mean it's Hyde, he's like Red's favorite."
Eric frowned but didn't bother to correct her. Sure, he was Red's kid, but even he couldn't deny the weird bond his father and Hyde shared.
"No man, Jackie's the favorite now," Hyde disagreed.
It was true that ever since Jackie had moved in with the family, Red had developed a soft spot for the girl. She was kind of like the daughter he'd always wanted to have, considering Laurie had turned out the way she did.
"Think it's pretty clear what these rules are really about," Hyde continued.
"What are you talking about?" Eric wondered.
"Red's trying to keep Hyde from dirtying up Jackie," Donna answered the question for him.
"Exactly," Hyde agreed with her. "Cept' he's too late cause she's plenty dirty already," he grinned widely, and Eric shuddered as his minded involuntarily drifted to what his friend could mean.
"Alright, I'm officially done talking about Hyde and Jackie's creepy relationship," Eric informed the two a moment later and walked away from them - back towards the basketball ring.
"What crawled up your butt?" Hyde questioned as he followed after Eric with Donna in his tracks.
Eric bent to pick up the ball. "You and Jackie," he paused to throw the ball to Hyde. "Then you started making out in there," he added and cringed.
Hyde rolled his eyes and took the shot, sinking the ball through the hoop effortlessly. "Yeah well you better get over it, cause me and Jackie might be together for a while," he told him with a shrug, as if it weren't a big deal.
Eric groaned. He'd been hoping this relationship was some phase that Hyde had to go through and that it would be over sooner rather than later, he was beginning to worry that wasn't the case.
"But man, she's the devil," he complained back, earning a shove from Donna.
"What can I do? She's hot," Hyde responded, throwing the ball back to Eric.
Eric frowned before shaking his head. "No, you only think she's hot because she's made of hell fire."
Donna groaned, stealing the ball from Eric and getting the attention of both boys. "Eric, for the last time – stop referring to Jackie as the devil," she warned him in a serious, stern tone that she normally only used for when they were arguing.
"I think they make a cute couple," she added a second later and Eric stifled a laugh, knowing how Hyde was going to take the statement.
"Don't call us cute," Hyde ordered, pointing a finger at Donna. "Jackie and I aren't cute, we're creepy and unnatural and that's the way I like it."
Donna rolled her eyes, "Well, you're those things too… But I've seen the way you are together, and I hate to tell you this but you're really sweet with her and that's cute."
Eric watched as Hyde's face screwed up into a frown and he couldn't help but laugh.
"Man, I'm turning into Forman… I gotta go steal something," Hyde muttered.
"As long as you're back home by 11, it's a school night," Eric pointed out with a big smile on his face.
As much as he was grossed out by Hyde and Jackie's new relationship, he had to admit it was fun finally having something to burn Hyde about.
"Get bent Forman," Hyde said as he stepped towards him, but before he had the chance to retaliate or punch Eric in the arm, a taxi pulled into the driveway – getting the attention of the three teenagers.
Eric turned towards the taxi as the door opened to reveal his older sister, Laurie.
What the hell was she doing back here?
"Hey little brother!" The blonde called as she waved to him.
Eric froze in response and watched as she pulled out two suitcases from the trunk of the car, confirming his worst nightmare.
Laurie was moving back in.
"I can't believe this," Donna spoke from beside him, obviously coming to the same conclusion as him.
"Can I get a little help with this?!" Laurie yelled from the other end of the drive-way, struggling with her two bags as the taxi pulled away from her and drove off.
Eric, Hyde and Donna slowly walked towards her.
"This'll be fun…" Hyde muttered sarcastically as they got closer.
Whatever his sister was here for, whatever her motives were (probably money, it was always money), Eric could say for sure that there would be nothing fun about it.
"What are you doing here?" He questioned once they reached her.
Laurie flashed him a mean look. "Duh, I'm moving back in doofus," she stated, confirming his theory. "Hyde, Donna, you guys better take the bags… Eric's little arms are probably too weak to lift them," she added insult to injury.
Eric glared over at Hyde as he began to chuckle at the burn inflicted upon him.
"Bring them inside," Laurie ordered before walking off towards the house and leaving the three of them by her things.
"Eric, I gotta say… I really hate your sister," Donna said.
The Forman's kitchen.
There was an eerie silence inside the kitchen as Kitty poured coffee into a mug by the stove top kettle.
Her daughter Laurie sat at the kitchen table with Red and Eric, while Steven sat, watching and waiting, on a bar stool by the breakfast counter. No one spoke a word, nothing had been said since Laurie had entered the house declaring her sudden return.
Kitty suspected they were all waiting for her, but she needed time to process what the return of her troubled daughter would mean for the family. If history had taught her anything, it was that her daughters surprises were never of the good kind.
9 times out of 10 it was always about money but this time Kitty and Red had nothing left to spare. Kitty would give an arm or a leg for her children, everyone knew that, but she worried there was no more to give.
As she stirred some sugar into her coffee, Kitty turned to check on her family by the table. Satisfied when she noticed none were looking in her direction, she quickly reached into the cupboard underneath the sink to grab out a bottle of vodka. Pouring a splash into her coffee, she had the bottle back under the sink before anyone had even noticed.
Or at-least she thought.
As Kitty looked back up her eyes connected with Steven, he looked from her to the mug in her hands with a frown on his face.
"Oh shh, this is how the Russians drink it." Kitty whispered.
She understood that he was sensitive when it came to her drinking (a side-effect from living with Edna for so long), and usually she was a lot better about hiding her drinking from him but if there was ever a day where vodka was needed, today was that day.
Luckily, the rest of her family still seemed to be oblivious to the special ingredient in her coffee.
"Well…" Eric suddenly opened his mouth, breaking the silence first. "There hasn't been this much tension in the house since you gave dad a heart-attack," he commented, staring across the table at his sister.
"Really good to have you back sis," he added but Kitty chose to ignore the sarcasm dripping from his words.
It was easier for her to pretend that her children got along, and that Laurie was just a sweet girl who was misunderstood.
"Yeah, it's really starting to feel like home," Hyde cleared his throat, getting the attention of everyone in the room. "Cept' everyone's wearing a shirt…" He continued, and Kitty flashed him a horrified look.
Their adopted sons past never ceased to shock and sadden her. Thank God they had been able to give him the home and the family that he deserved.
"Enough," Red ordered with his hand in the air. Kitty sipped her coffee and remained in the kitchen as she let her husband take the reins. Laurie always did listen to him more than she did her.
"Laurie, what's going on? You need money?" Red wondered, staring over at his daughter who looked nervous under his gaze.
"No daddy," she spoke up, batting her lashes at him like she always did when she needed something from him. Kitty had learned to resist the power of her daughters charm a while ago, but Red was still no match for it.
"I want to come home," their daughter added after a moment's pause. "I'm sorry for running away after your heart attack but I thought it was my fault and I was scared… I just couldn't bear to lose you and I just felt so guilty"
At this, Kitty's heart melted to putty in her hands. Even Red seemed to have been emotionally affected by her unusually sincere apology as he was clearly at a loss for words.
"Oh what-ever!" Eric rolled his eyes. "She's full of it dad, she didn't ditch town because she was scared. She ditched because that's just what she does. Then she comes back with some sap story and gets you and mom to forgive her and then she gets to live here for free for a few more months until she saves up enough money to ditch us again!"
"Shut up dingus!" Laurie yelled back at her brother.
"You're just mad because you know it's the truth!"
"Is not, Erica!"
"Oh, real mature!"
"That's it!" Red stood up from his chair suddenly, startling everyone in the kitchen and successfully shutting their two kids up. "One more word out of either of your mouths and I'll be kicking your butts so hard, your noses will bleed. Am I clear?" He questioned their kids, pointing a finger at the both of them.
Eric went to open his mouth but thought better all of a sudden, choosing to sit in silence under his father's glare.
Kitty swallowed the rest of her Russian coffee and stepped towards the kitchen table. Letting Red take charge of the situation hadn't been working as well as she had hoped.
Never send a man to do a woman's job.
"Laurie, honey… Of-course we are happy that you're home and safe," she began, flashing her daughter a reassuring smile. "And of-course we never blamed you for Red's heart attack, nor do we think it was your fault,"
Steven's muffled laughter cut through the room.
"Well not entirely your fault," Kitty muttered awkwardly before continuing. "It's just that we weren't expecting you and now that Jackie is staying with us… There's not a lot of room in the house," she mumbled, feeling guilty.
"Jackie?" Laurie repeated with an annoyed expression on her face. "Who cares about Jackie, I'm your daughter!"
"You heard mom," Eric cut in, Red's last words of warning seemingly forgotten. "There's no room for you here so maybe you can go and live with someone else?... Say I don't know, your husband!"
"My foot is twitching to kick your ass boy, keep testing it!" Red warned his son and Eric shut his mouth. "Laurie, if you need a place to stay you can share your old room with Jackie," he informed her a moment later.
Kitty watched as Laurie's mouth dropped open from the shock of not getting her way.
"Oh, that's going to be a disaster," Eric grumbled.
"It'll be World War III… Better start building the bomb shelter man," Hyde added, shaking his head.
Kitty thought they were over exaggerating. Laurie and Jackie might get along, they were both girly girls after all.
"I can't believe you're making me share my own room with one of your random orphan cases," Laurie began to complain but before she could continue, the sliding door to the kitchen was flung open to reveal a puffed-out Fez and Michael Kelso.
"Oh no," Kitty sighed.
"Damnit Ali-Baba, now's not the time!" Red yelled.
"Fez, what the hell?" Laurie stood from the table to face her husband who was still trying to catch his breath by the breakfast counter.
"Laurie-" Fez started, wheezing and clutching his side with a pained expression. "Ai, stitches-" He groaned suddenly.
Kitty quickly grabbed a glass of a water for her son's foreign friend and circled around the kitchen to hand him the drink. "Here, this will help," she told him as he grabbed hold of the glass before chugging the water down.
Everyone in the room watched as Fez stood up straight and turned back to face Laurie.
"You're back," he pointed out the obvious.
Laurie rolled her eyes. "Well duh, but I didn't come back for you," she told him harshly.
Fez deflated. "Did you get my messages?" He asked quietly.
"What messages?" She blinked back at him with a blank expression on her face.
Even Kitty could tell she was lying.
"Oh, don't play with me missy! The one's about the immigration agent!" Fez yelled back.
"Hang on!" Red shouted, looking back and forth between Laurie and Fez. "What immigration agent?"
The room went silent as everyone waiting for Fez to explain himself to Red but the longer the silence stretched, the more evident it was that Fez wasn't prepared to spill the beans to him.
Surprisingly, it was Kelso who spoke up first.
"Some agent from immigration is going to come check on Laurie and Fez's marriage," he informed the room, although only Kitty and Red reacted to the news. Proving they were the last to find out, like usual.
"If they decide Fez and Laurie's marriage is fake, Fez'll get deported and Laurie could go to jail," Hyde added to Kelso's sentence and Kitty gasped.
"Oh Red, we can't let that happen!" She exclaimed, panicking now.
"It won't happen Kitty, calm down," he assured her in a sweet tone. "Alright… This is what's going to happen," he said before turning to Laurie. "You're going to convince that agent that your marriage to Aladdin is real, and after the both of you are given the all clear, you're going to get a divorce and end this once and for all… Do I make myself clear?"
Laurie nodded her head slowly in response. "Yes daddy," she mumbled under her breath.
"How bout you?" Red turned to Fez.
"Yes sir," he responded, a sad expression on his face.
When Jackie got home from school, the Forman residence was empty. The usual crowded house was completely void of all people, a strange occurrence that had Jackie on edge as she made her way through the house towards her bedroom, school bag in hand.
She was aware that Steven, Eric and Kelso were working the afternoon shift at the Holiday Hotel and wouldn't be finished until later tonight, but that only accounted for half of the crowd that were normally present in the house.
Mr. and Mrs. Forman were no where to be seen and Fez and Donna were missing too.
What was going on here?
As she headed up the stairs, she was reminded of what it was like living in New-York. Coming home from school to an empty house day in and out had taken a toll on her psyche and although she'd only been with the Forman's for a few months now, she'd gotten used to being surrounded by friends and family constantly.
It was a feeling she couldn't express but one that filled her with more happiness then she thought possible. All she knew was she never wanted to go back to the way she used to feel in New-York.
When she rounded the corner upstairs towards her bedroom, she noticed the door was half open. Which was strange considering when she had left for school in the morning, she specifically remembered closing it.
Sensing something was going on, she approached the room carefully. A hundred possible explanations came to mind and most of them had to do with her friends playing some sort of prank on her.
Maybe they were all hiding in her room, waiting to scare her?
But what she found in her room, was much worse then any prank.
Jackie stood in the doorway, shocked as she watched Laurie Forman move handfuls of her clothes out of the closet and dumping them in a pile on the floor in the corner. She noticed her posters had also been removed, replaced with ones of Laurie's favorite bands and the Charlies Angels.
There was also a single mattress laying on the floor in the front of the room, making it even more clear as to what was going on here.
This was her worst nightmare.
"No," Jackie shook her head, stepping further into the room and announcing her presence to Laurie. "No, no, no," she continued, shaking her head quickly.
Laurie paused by the closet, her arms full of more of Jackie's clothing. "Oh, it's you," she said before unceremoniously dropping her things onto the floor. "Listen, this is how it's going to be. I'm moving back in and since my parents refused to kick you out for whatever reason, we'll be sharing this room… I'm willing to give you that corner over there, where you can keep all your crap and I'll of course be taking my bed back, so you'll be sleeping on that," she motioned her hand towards the single mattress that lay bare by Jackie's feet.
Jackie's mouth hung open, in complete shock.
There was no way that this is what Mr. and Mrs. Forman would have agreed too. Laurie had been gone for months and this was her room now, she refused to be bullied by her.
"No, that's not happening," Jackie said suddenly, stepping over the mattress and over to the corner of the room where most of her clothes laid in a pile on the floor. "We all know it's only a matter of time before you run off with a married man or the circus or something, so it should be your things piled up in the corner and I should get the closet."
She stated as she picked up a large amount of her things and walked them back into the closet, stuffing them back into draws.
"And you can have the mattress on the floor!"
Laurie squealed, pushing Jackie to the side as she stormed back into the closet, grabbing onto Jackie's cheerleading skirt. "This is my room!" She yelled.
Jackie grabbed hold of her skirt and pulled, trying to take it back from the blonde but Laurie had a tight grip. "No, it's my room!" She shouted back angrily as they both wrestled for possession of the skirt.
They yelled back and forth but Jackie was stronger and was finally able to yank her skirt free of Laurie's hold. The force caused Laurie to stumble backwards and trip over the mattress on the floor, falling to the ground in a loud thud.
"Argh!" Laurie screamed as Jackie stepped forward towards her. "You pushed me! You are going to regret that!" she shouted, pushing herself up and off the floor.
Jackie frowned. "I didn't push you, you just fell! It's not my fault you're a spaz," she told her, placing her hands on her hips.
"Oh yeah? Well who do you think my parents will believe?" The blonde questioned, an evil grin on her face.
Jackie felt her blood boiling. So, this is how it was going to be?
"You can't be serious?" She questioned.
Laurie shrugged. "Don't try me Jackie, I could make your life a living hell here."
Silence filled the room as the two stood in front of each-other, each girl sizing up the other. Jackie knew this could go two ways, either she gives in to Laurie's wishes and lives like a refugee in her own bedroom in order to obtain some level of peace, or she could stand up for herself and deal with the consequences.
It wasn't a hard choice to make.
"Go ahead and tell your parents that I pushed you Laurie, they won't believe you because you're a liar and they know it," she pointed out and watched as Laurie flashed her a dirty look.
"I'll sleep on the mattress, but we're sharing closet space and my ABBA posters are going back up," she conceded, hoping Laurie would except the terms.
Besides she figured the single mattress wasn't nearly as bad as the army cot Steven had to sleep on every-night.
"Fine," Laurie spat back after a moment's pause. "But your cleaning up all this mess," she added before turning and leaving Jackie to deal with the aftermath of their fight.
Her clothes were all over the place and she'd have to spend the next hour cleaning up a mess she didn't make. Sharing a room with Laurie was going to be a constant challenge, one she wasn't sure she was ready for.
She'd just relaxed into life here and now everything was going to change again. Laurie was going to make her life a living hell, she'd said so herself and there was nothing Jackie could do about it because like it or not, Laurie was the Forman's daughter and they'd pick her over Jackie every-time.
She let out a frustrated scream and kicked the mattress on the floor (her new bed) repeatedly.
"And then she made me clean up the whole mess!" Jackie exclaimed.
She was sitting on his army coat, he'd found her in his room after he'd gotten back from work and like he expected she was less then pleased about Laurie's return. As he got changed out of his work clothes into a pair of joggers and a plain grey shirt, she had filled him in on what he'd missed while he was at work.
He'd never seen her this worked up before, not even her mother had gotten her this mad. He predicted that there was going to be issues between the two girls, you couldn't have two dominant personalities like Laurie and Jackie sharing a room without them clashing but he never thought it would get to Jackie this much.
"I hate her Steven! I can't believe Fez married her… I can't believe I have to share a room with her!" Jackie groaned loudly, falling back onto his bed suddenly. "What am I going to do?" She questioned.
Hyde sighed, walking across the small room to sit down next to her.
"Look, it's not like you spend a lot of time in that room. I mean you spend most of your time down here with us, you'll hardly have to see her anyway," he tried to be helpful.
Jackie frowned. "Can I just sleep in here with you?" She questioned.
"If Red catches you down here after hours, he'll kick our asses man," Hyde pointed out, even though the he wanted nothing more than to have her in his bed.
But she knew the rules just as well as he did and Red was acting crazy lately, he wasn't about to risk getting caught and having even stricter rules put in place as a consequence. It was hard enough as things were now getting time alone with Jackie, he didn't want to push his luck.
"I know…" Jackie mumbled, sitting back up and turning her body to face him. "You're right… I just have to suck it up."
"I know Laurie's a bitch but trust me, she's all talk," Hyde assured her before smiling. "You could take her any day of the week."
Jackie smiled softly. "You think so?" She wondered.
He nodded, not even needed a moment to think it over. "Yeah man, you could definitely kick her ass."
She laughed, and his smile widen. He loved hearing her laugh, better yet he loved being the one who got to make her laugh.
"I missed you today," she admitted to him softly a moment later.
They'd spent all of last night together and he'd taken her to school in the morning, besides his friends he'd never spent this much time with anyone else but even he had to admit he'd missed her too.
"We got another 45 minutes until your curfew," he reminded her, reaching out to wrap his arms around her waist before pulling her closer to him. "How about you show me just how much you missed me?"
She laughed in response and he watched as she changed positions, moving so that she was now sitting on his lap. He kept his arms around her waist while hers came up around his neck.
"First you have to admit you missed me too," she said suddenly, with a wicked grin on her face.
Hyde sighed. He hated all that sappy stuff, and he knew she knew it too but that had never stopped her before. She was always trying to get him talking about his feelings and all of that mushy crap, it gave him the shakes, but she was relentless, and he knew he wasn't going to get anywhere unless he gave in.
"Jackie, you know I did," he muttered uncomfortably.
"You have to say the words," she pointed out stubbornly.
Hyde rolled his eyes. "Can't believe I'm being blackmailed by a 95-pound brunette with pink toe-nails."
"I learned from the best," she smiled back at him, completely unphased by his outburst.
He was grinning back before he even noticed. As annoying as she was, making him admit all this sappy Forman-y stuff to her, he couldn't deny she was coming along nicely.
"That you did," he agreed before quickly picking her up and flipping her down onto the bed, so that she was laying down on her back. She was laughing as he climbed on top of her, he bent down and began placing kisses across her neck.
"Say it," she ordered, but the moan she let out as he sucked the sensitive spot on her neck negated the power she held against him.
Either way, he was in too good of a mood to deny her.
"Mm, I missed you too," he mumbled against her skin.
She dug her fingers into his hair and pulled, guiding him up to her face. Less than a second later she was kissing him, and he was reminded of why he always caved when it came to her.
Red's rules and Laurie's sudden return were going to make life difficult and things were going to be tougher from now on, but they'd get through it, he was sure of it. They had each-other now and he was always going to have her back, no matter what