Nobody Said it Was Easy

- Guinevere -

A/N: What if 'Keg! Max!' had ended as Rory and Jess went upstairs, but everything else happened as it did? My take on the story. Although I hate the fics where Rory does just like her mother did, I thought of a pretty decent way to handle the situation, so I hope you like it. And as always, please review.

Disclaimer: Rory and the gang belong to ASP and everyone over there, but I own anyone you haven't already met on tv.

~*~

- 1 - The Discovery

"Mom, can I talk to you?" Rory Gilmore asked as she and her mother pulled up to their house in Rory's new car. Inside, the town of Stars Hollow was waiting to congratulate their princess on her graduation from Chilton.

"What is it babe? We've got a house full of guests and a lot of packing to do," Lorelai flipped down her visor to straighten her hair.

"You know how you told me to always tell you when something changed, you know, on the boy front?" Rory fiddled with her seatbelt and avoided looking at her mother.

"Yes," she replied slowly, turning her full attention to Rory.

"Well, something did change, and I was afraid to tell you at first because I wasn't even ready to face what happened, but now I've got a problem, and I don't know what to do about it, and I don't want you to be mad or anything, but I need your help." Rory heaved for breath, but still avoided eye contact.

"Rory, what are you saying?" Lorelai could pretty much guess at what her daughter's reply would be.

"I think I'm late," Rory said, finally glancing to meet the elder Gilmore's stare.

Lorelai closed her eyes and breathed deeply. That little bastard Jess was no doubt behind this one, she thought to herself, as he was always behind something of this magnitude of delinquency. Slowly she opened her eyes to see her eighteen-year-old daughter, blue eyes ready to spill over. What else could she say but, "Okay."

She unhooked her seat belt and opened the door to get out, but turned back to a motionless Rory. "We'll worry about this later Rory. It could just be stress. Right now we will party to celebrate the fact that I raised one of the greatest kids this world has ever seen, and she got herself into Yale and wrangled valedictorian away from the ruthless Paris Gellar. Come on, don't even think about it now." Lorelai rounded the car and pulled her daughter out and up the stairs.

Rory didn't know what the hell she was supposed to think about if she couldn't think about this.

~*~*~

Three hours later, Lorelai was chatting with Babette, the last of the stragglers, while pushing her out the door. As the door shut, Lorelai leaned against it trying to retain calmness before going to find Rory. She knocked on her bedroom door where Rory had gone to change her clothes. "Coming in, holler if you're not decent," she called.

"I'm fully clothed mother," Rory groaned tying her sneaker.

"Good. Now, sit down," she ordered, pointing to the bed. She opted for pacing back and forth across the room. She was running through her game plan in her head. Go to Walton, a town forty minutes away where no one could possibly know either of them, buy four pregnancy tests, then return home. She hadn't gotten any further than that.

"I'm sure it's nothing, Rory, but we're going to go to the Walton Pharmacy." She sat down next to her. "Why didn't you tell me?" she asked quietly.

"I was afraid of what you might say, of you being disappointed. And then I pushed it as far out of my mind as possible, especially when Jess left, because I thought it was a non-issue. I would have told you, honestly, I just wasn't sure how to." She rested her head on her mother's shoulder. "What am I going to do?"

"I don't know, hun, but we'll figure it out. We always do."

~*~*~

Lorelai and Rory had returned home and methodically preformed the four tests. As they waited for the results, they sat on the couch folding the rest of their clothes for their trip to Europe. Rory decided she should bring up the obvious question.

"Are we still going to go? I mean, if the answer is yes?"

"Of course we're going. You have been waiting your whole life for this, and we aren't going to let this stop us. You couldn't be more than what, a month along?"

"Not even that, if it's positive. But what can you do when you're getting fatter by the minute and tossing your tacos at every turn?"

"Plenty. There are plenty of things you can do while you're pregnant."

"I think the time is up, Mom," Rory said glancing at her watch.

"Shall you do the honors, or shall I?"

"I'll let you be the bearer of bad news, because I'm sure it will be bad."

"Rory, no news is bad news. Either way, the results of these tests will be good news." Lorelai was just trying to keep a straight face and be strong for Rory. She knew as well as her daughter that a positive on any test would mean an entirely different life for Rory, as it had for her.

~*~*~

"Lorelai, tell me again why your father and I had to drive all the way from Hartford this early when you were supposed to be on a plane this morning?" Emily Gilmore greeted her daughter as her husband followed with a copy of the Wall Street Journal in hand.

"We need to have a family meeting," Lorelai cringed at the sheer idea of what she had just said.

"A family meeting that involves – no offense," Emily said as she saw Luke sitting on the porch, "Him?"

"Yes, it involves Luke. Now come on Mom, Dad, let's go inside." She ushered her guests into the living room where Rory sat in a trance, curled up with a pillow in her lap.

"Lorelai, what is wrong with her?" Richard asked as he took notice of his granddaughter who only nodded in their general direction before returning her eyes to somewhere just above the mantle.

"Dad, she's fine, just a little tired. Now sit, sit, please." Lorelai and her mother sat on the couch while Richard took the chair and Luke leaned against the mantle, looking worriedly at Rory.

"Do you know anything about this?" Emily directed her question toward Luke who just grimaced and shrugged.

"Leave him alone Mom. I called you guys here because we have a situation and I don't think Rory and I can handle it alone; and I thought you all had a right to know."

"Oh, here we go," Emily threw up her hands, already speculating on what her daughter and granddaughter had to tell her.

"Emily, please, let Lorelai speak for once," Richard reprimanded.

"Mom, Dad, I don't want you to overreact, but Rory and I just found out last night that she's, well, you know, pregnant." Normally Lorelai would continue with some words of wisdom, or tell them they didn't need to worry, but she couldn't think of anything.

"Overreact?" came the almost-yell from the unlikely screaming candidate, Luke. "I'm going to kill him! I swear to God, I'm going to get on a plane, fly to wherever the heck he landed and strangle him. I knew from the beginning it was a bad idea for him to come to Stars Hollow, but nooo, I had to be the good uncle. You were right Lorelai; the two of them should have been kept apart at all costs. My God, I'm going to kill him!"

Richard and Emily were too shocked to say anything. Emily was practically hyperventilating while Richard seemed to be calculating in his head. Rory had chosen now to finally speak up, though almost inaudibly. "Luke, calm down. It's my fault too, and there's nothing you or anyone could have done to stop it."

"I don't mean to be the one to ask the obviously stupid question," Emily began, wide-eyed, looking to the floor, "but did you even use protection?"

"Mom, come on, of course she did. These things just happen sometimes." Lorelai had begun wringing her hands

"I just don't know what to say. What can I say except that we must have really screwed up. First you, and now Rory? What could have possibly gone so horribly wrong?" Emily couldn't take her disbelieving eyes from the floor.

"It's no one's fault but mine and Jess's. I take responsibility for everything, but now I need help," Rory squeaked.

"Of course you do," her grandfather finally spoke. "And that is what we are here for. First things first, though, you need to see a doctor so we'll know for sure. Then we can decide on a course of action, but only after we know for sure. You all sit tight while I go phone a friend of mine who is an obstetrician." Richard got up and headed for the kitchen while Luke took his abandoned seat to hold his head in his hands and the three Gilmore girls looked after him awestruck.

"He took that awfully well," Lorelai muttered to herself while Emily rolled her eyes.

Minutes later, Richard returned. "An old friend of mine, Atkins Lancaster, has agreed to see you, Rory, this morning at 11 and he has promised me that everything will be kept very private. So why don't you go get dressed and we'll drive you all in to Hartford."

"I've got a diner to attend to since that idiot kid left. Call me when you get back, Lorelai, and let me know what they said," Luke rose and nearly ran for the front door. He was so mad, he was practically steaming.

"Just so I have things straight, this kid we're all talking about is Jess? The one who recently came to dinner with Rory?" Emily asked Lorelai.

"Yes Mom," Lorelai snapped. She then turned to Rory. "Come on, I'll find something for you to wear while you take a shower." Rory slowly climbed the stairs while her mother went for the suitcases piled next to the door.

Meanwhile Richard and Emily sat on the couch, she looking crazed and he looking quite calm and in control.

"Richard, I will not let her ruin her life like Lorelai did. It will not happen again," Emily grumbled.

"Rory is not her mother, and Lorelai did not ruin her life. I realize that you feel guilty, but you don't need to take it out on them. We'll take care of this situation, and Rory will be able to get on with her life."

"Richard, are you suggesting that our granddaughter have an abortion? Because that is what it sounds like to me, and she simply cannot do that."

"Emily, can we just please wait and see if there is even anything to worry about at all."

~*~*~

"Well, congratulations Ms. Gilmore," Dr Lancaster said, results in hand. "You are going to have a baby in about eight months time."

"Thank you," Rory mumbled and limply squeezed her mother's hand. They rose and exited the doctor's office to join Richard and Emily in the waiting room. They looked to her expectantly and she nodded back as she passed them, headed for the car.

Richard turned to Lorelai as they followed Rory. "While you were in with the doctor I booked a flight for the two of you for tomorrow evening. It will land in Heathrow, so you'll have to take another to the continent, but I trust you can take care of that when you see what you want to do."

"Thanks Dad," Lorelai looked almost surprised.

"What is she going to do about Yale?" Emily asked.

"She'll just have to defer for a semester or two. I'll call the Dean's office this afternoon and take care of it. In the meantime, I'll let you three decide on a course of action." He climbed in the car, leaving Emily and Lorelai to themselves for a moment.

"I think he wants her to have an abortion, Lorelai," Emily stated.

"Well, she won't. Even if I told her it was for the best, she wouldn't do it. Face it Mom, she's having a kid."

~*~*~ To Be Continued ~*~*~