AN to the Max!: Yeah, this is the Sequel to The Orange Soda Will Get You Ever Time… it picks up a couple of months after the original… so… mid January, since OS was in late November. I don't know how its going to turn out, or how it will compare to the original… I just know that I wanted to write this, and it's fun, and I smile when I write Dan. So here. I hope you like it :)

Rating: A mild pg-13… he's five for Christ's sake!

Summary: Richard and Emily have their first formal encounter with the Mariano Boys… hehehe.

Thanks to Elise for the beta, and for Lydia, who makes pretty pictures, and Marissa, and anyone else who has had a sucky, sucky day.

Orange Crush Pt. 1

"Let me see if I understand this correctly," Emily said. "You and Jess… the boy who up and left you in high school, and broke your heart… are back together. And he has a son?"

Rory nodded slowly. "That's the basic gist."

"What happened to all those nice boys I was introducing you to?"

"I didn't care for them," Rory replied. "I… I love Jess."

Emily stared.

Lorelai watched from her spot next to Rory. "Mom, spontaneous combustion is not ladylike."

Emily blinked. "What?"

"Nothing," Lorelai smiled.

"So, Jess has a son… was he married?" Emily asked.

"Engaged when Dan was born," Rory replied.

"So what happened?"

"She left," Rory said with a shrug. "Jess has been raising Dan on his own."

"Dan's a great kid, Mom," Lorelai interjected. "You're gonna love him."

"Oh?" Emily replied. "And when do I get to meet him?"

Rory stared. "Uh…"

Lorelai cringed.

oooooooooo

"Thanks, Mom."

"I didn't mean to," Lorelai defended. "I was trying to be helpful."

They walked over to Lorelai's jeep and got in.

"I know," Rory sighed. "I was just hoping to have more time to prepare them."

"I hope Mom doesn't try and chew Dan up and spit him out," Lorelai frowned.

Rory started the car and frowned as well.

ooooooooo

Jess and Dave watched as Dan tried for the umpteenth time to do a back flip.

"Remind me again why we rented three Jet Li movies."

Dave shook his head. "Don't remember."

"Huh."

Dan tried once more and banged his still-healing leg on the coffee table. "OW!"

"Careful," Jess warned.

"I almost had it that time!"

Dave chuckled. "You okay?"

"Do we have any more movies to watch?" Dan asked.

"Hudson Hawke," Jess replied.

"Really?!" Dan cried. "I love that one! Can we watch it?"

Jess sighed and looked at the clock on the wall. "It's getting late."

"No it's not!" Dan squeaked. "I can stay up forever!"

"I'm sure you could, but you'd be hell to deal with," Jess replied. He walked over, and sighed. "How about this… you take your bath, and get ready for bed, and if you're not tired afterwards, we'll start the movie."

Dan nodded. "Okay!" He got up and rushed off to the bathroom.

Jess sighed and followed, glancing at Dave. "We'll be back."

Dave smirked and nodded. "I'm gonna grab a beer."

Jess nodded, and disappeared down the hallway, just as the front door opened.

Dave smirked. "Hey, Rory. How was dinner?"

She sighed.

He frowned. "That bad?"

"Let's just say, Jess might be a little more upset about it than I am," Rory replied.

"Uh-oh," Dave said. He took an extra beer out of the refrigerator and handed it to her.

"Thanks," she smiled, accepting it, and twisting off the cap. "Where are the boys?"

"It's bath time," Dave replied.

Rory smirked and took a sip. "Ah, so I should expect a naked five-year-old to run out in a few seconds."

"Nope," Dave shook his head. "They have a movie deal."

Rory nodded. "So… how happy do you think Jess will be when I tell him that he and Dan are scheduled to come to Friday dinner with me next week?"

Dave stared. "You might want to start lining up other prospective boyfriends," he told her. "Either that, or start making out your will."

She sighed slowly, and looked up when she heard a loud thump from the bathroom. "Uh-oh."

"I don't even wanna know," Dave shook his head.

Rory nodded, and walked down the hallway. She knocked on the bathroom door. "Guys?"

"Ow…"

"Jess?"

"I'm okay," he replied. "Just… slipped."

"Oh my god! Are you okay?!"

"Fine, I'm fine," he replied.

She opened the door, to find Jess on the floor, holding a hand to his left eye. "I'm fine."

"You hit your eye," Rory replied, kneeling down in front him, and pulling his hand from his face. The skin around his eye was swelling up quickly. "Oh, no…"

Dan sat in the bathtub, looking guilty. "It's my fault. I splashed him, and a whole bunch got on the floor and he slipped, and hit his head on the tub."

"Sokay, Dan," Jess replied. "I'm fine."

"You fell."

Rory frowned. "It looks bad…"

"Great," Jess muttered.

Dan sniffled a little. "I'm sorry."

Jess sighed. "Rory, can you get him out of the tub? I think he's clean enough."

"No!" Dan squeaked. "I don't want Rory to see me naked!"

"I'll close my eyes," Rory said.

"But what if you slip and get hurt, too?" Dan asked.

Jess sighed and got to his feet. "I'll get him."

"Jess," Rory said, biting her lip.

"I'm fine," Jess snapped. "Everybody back off."

Rory shook her head and walked out of the bathroom.

"You shouldn't have been so mean," Dan told him.

Jess didn't reply.

"I'm sorry I hurt your eye," Dan said quietly, as Jess lifted him out of the tub, and wrapped him in towel. "Please don't be mad at me."

"I'm not mad," Jess told him as he helped him into his pajamas. "It was an accident." He took the towel and rubbed Dan's hair a little.

"No movie tonight," Dan muttered.

"Tomorrow night," Jess replied. "It's late. You should get some sleep, and I need ice."

Dan nodded and turned around to leave the bathroom.

Jess sighed. "Dan… I'm sorry I was mean."

Dan turned and smiled and hugged Jess.

Jess sighed and patted him on the head before picking him up. "Come on. Let's get you to bed."

oooooooooooo

Rory looked up when Jess walked into the kitchen and headed straight for the freezer.

"Hi," she said. "Dave went home. He says 'bye."

Jess nodded as he pulled out a few cubes of ice and dropped them into a plastic baggy.

Rory sighed. "I'm really sorry I got pushy…"

"It's not your fault," Jess muttered, placing the bag of ice on his eye. "I'm just not in a good mood."

"With good reason," Rory nodded. "I would be cranky too if I hit my eye on a bathtub." She walked over to him and wrapped her arms around his waist. "You gonna be okay?"

He nodded. "I'll be okay…" He smirked jokingly. "Just keep me away from your grandmother and I should be absolutely perfect."

Rory bit her bottom lip.

Jess took the ice off and stared at her. "Rory…"

"It's not my fault," she told him quickly. "I finally told her that we were together, and Mom and I were trying to… talk you and Dan up… see if we could earn you some points for being a single dad through no fault of your own, and earn Dan some points for being cute, and Mom was just being nice, and told Grandma that she would love Dan, and then…"

"We got ordered over for dinner," Jess finished.

Rory nodded. "I am so sorry."

"So… I'm going to have dinner with Emily Gilmore sporting a black eye… again."

Rory rubbed a hand up and down his side. "At least I know you didn't get beat up by Dean this time."

"Hey," Jess snapped, replacing the ice. "The one time Dean and I got into a fight, I won."

"Yes, Jess."

He glared the best he could with his still-swelling eye.

She smiled a little and kissed him.

oooooooooooo

Rory sighed when she walked into the kitchen the next morning, and found Jess sitting at the kitchen table, his left eye black. "Auditioning to be a member of TLC?"

He grumbled and took a sip off coffee.

She snickered and kissed the top of his head. "Dan's not up yet?"

"Not yet," Jess replied.

She sighed, and went over to the large cupboard to retrieve her Saturday morning Pop Tarts, and opened it up.

"HI RORY!"

She screamed and jumped back at the sight of Dan sitting in the cabinet, holding a bottle of Sunkist.

"Want some soda?!"

Rory put a hand to her chest and breathed heavily. "What are you doing in there?!"

Dan grinned. "I wanted to surprise you!"

Jess fought to hold back a chuckle.

Rory spun to Jess. "This was your idea."

Jess shook his head. "I didn't even know he was in there."

"You had to," Rory pointed out. "You got the coffee filters out of there!"

"I took them out before I got in," Dan giggled.

"How thoughtful of you," Rory replied.

"This is what you get for spending your weekend with boys," Jess pointed. "He used to do that to me all the time, before I started waking up before he did."

Rory sighed heavily and lifted Dan out of the cabinet. "You are a kooky little kid."

Dan giggled and took another sip of soda.

"Sugar high," Jess muttered, taking another sip of coffee.

Rory set Dan down on the table and sighed. "I need to talk to you."

"Okay," Dan nodded.

"And I need you to be serious," Rory went on.

Dan nodded and took another sip.

"Next Friday, you and your dad are gonna come with me to dinner at my grandparents' house," Rory told him.

"You have grandparents?" Dan asked, bewildered.

Rory nodded.

"But you're so old!"

Rory sighed. "My age is not the point. The point is… we're going for dinner… and you have to be on your best behavior."

Dan nodded. "Okay!"

"Okay?" Rory asked.

Dan nodded again.

Rory smiled and ruffled his hair. "Okay." She walked over to the cabinet again to get her pop tarts.

Jess winked at Dan with his good eye, and Dan smiled, and sipped his soda.