He'd be a fool not to…

She couldn't stop fidgeting, couldn't stop looking around the Grand Hall for someone who certainly wasn't her boyfriend.

"Now don't worry Ror you're going to be great…And you're not paying attention to me." Lorelai Gilmore stated. She followed her daughters gaze but al she could see was the entrance into the Grand Hall. "So are you planning on being some kinda of architect?"

In the back of her mind Rory registered her mom talking to her but she didn't reply. She wouldn't take her gaze off the archway…just in case he walked through and she missed him.

"Right then. Ror, honey, you're scaring mommy." She waved her hand in front of her daughters face, obstructing her view, and finally shaking her out of the trance she'd been in.

"Huh?" Rory uttered she turned her gaze to her mother for a second before switching it back to the entrance.

Lorelai came to stand behind her daughter, trying to see something interesting about the archway but came up blank. "Okay so do you want to tell mommy why you're staring at the entrance or do you want me to guess?"

"I'm just looking for someone, that's all."

"Oh! And this someone wouldn't happen to be a blonde haired, blue eyed Chiltonite."

Sighing Rory turned around to face her mother, with a guilty expression. "Mom I don't know what's wrong with me!" She said exasperated.

Lorelai's blue eyes filled with compassion for her daughter and she gathered into an embrace. "What do you mean babe?" She asked her soothingly while stroking her back.

Frustrated beyond hell, Rory pulled out of her mothers hug and started to pace in front of her. "I don't know what happened! I mean just a couple of months ago I was so in love with Dean!"

"Are you still in love with him?" Lorelai asked even though she knew the answer already.

Rory's shoulders dropped and she turned to face her mother once again, her eyes shining with unshed tears. "I do…I love him…I'm just not in love with him anymore."

Lorelai looked down at her daughter. She was so feeble, so broken. Slowly she brought her daughter back into her arms trying to comfort her. "Shhhhhh…Ror, sweetie, its okay that you don't love him like you use to."

Rory angrily wiped the tears from her eyes. "Yeah but it's not okay that I've been stringing him along for weeks! I told him I loved him just last week mom, even though I knew it wasn't true! I lied to him and now I'm going break his heart…and I don't want to!" She brought her fist up to her mom's shirt and clenched the material so tightly as her body shook.

"Well guess what Rory…You already did!"

The younger Gilmore froze. She recognized that voice…but it was so full of anger and betrayal right now. "Dean…" Was all she uttered as she turned around in her mothers arms.

"I can't believe you Rory! I can't believe that you would do something like this to me!" He was enraged but his voice was cracking like he was going to cry or something.

Rory broke out of her mothers embrace and moved closer to Dean but he backed away. "Dean please you have to listen to me! I don't want us to end like this!" She pleaded with him to understand.

"I don't want this to end at all…" He quelled his anger.

Lorelai had noticed that their outburst had caught the attention of most of the room so silently she led them into the hallway and away from prying eyes. She gave her daughter one last smile before heading back into the Grand Hall.

Neither of them said anything for awhile they just kinda stood their facing each other. Sighing Rory leaned against the lockers and slid to the floor and a few moments later Dean mimicked her position.

He turned to look at her guilty expression and asked one question. "What happened?"

Rory wouldn't look at him; she kept her gaze focused on her legs as she picked off imaginary lint off her Juliet costume. "I don't know, Dean. Ever since we got back together it just hasn't been the same. Everything felt so…I don't know…"

"Rory look at me." She still didn't, so he reached out and turned her head but her eyes would meet his. "Fine just don't look at me…"

It was the defeated tone of voice he used that made her raise her eyes to his. "Dean I'm sorry…I'm so sorry!" She choked on the words coming out and felt the tears stream down he face again.

"I know you are…and I know the last thing you would want would be to hurt me. Can you at least tell me why you don't love me anymore?" He pleaded with her.

She took a deep breath before answering him. "The first time we kissed there was a spark, a connection. Now…there's nothing." She knew that was harsh but she didn't want to lie to him anymore.

Dean took in a deep breath and closed his eyes for a second before slowly getting up. He stuck out his hand to help her, and when she grasped it he had to admit that he didn't feel the same electricity as when they first were going out but he still loved her.

"Listen Dean, I'm really sorry and I know this is probably really difficult for you but there's something else I have to tell you…" She knew she had to get this over with…the faster she did it; the quicker it would be over with.

"What's that?" He asked gently trying to come to terms with their break up.

"Uh…I kinda have…ummm…feelings for someone else…" She stuttered slightly and again wouldn't meet his eyes.

"Who?" Dean asked tensely some of his anger returning. He knew who it would be and he also knew he was just hurting himself even more but he needed it confirmed.

"Tristin…" She said it so quietly that he almost didn't hear…keyword being almost. She heard him suck in a breath and watched as his fists clenched at his sides. She knew that it must be extremely difficult for him…

"Great so not am I only losing you…I'm losing you to him!" He said it so bitterly and sarcastically that it made Rory flinch and cower more under his hard gaze.

"I'm sorry…" She said it so meekly that Dean actually softened a bit.

"Look Rory, I'm sorry. I don't want to be the jealous ex-boyfriend…" It hit home pretty hard to him that he was now her ex. "I just want you to be happy. And if…he…makes you happy then I wish you luck."

Rory's head snapped up in surprise. She was utterly shocked that he was so understanding. She had seriously thought she would have to break up a nasty fight tonight. "Are you serious?" She asked bewildered.

She was even more surprised when he laughed slightly at her question. This was a totally different Dean then what she had expected. "Rory I may not be happy about this because I love you…but I want you to be happy." Dean clenched his fists at his side, saying these words were killing him slowly. "But I do want something in return."

"Anything!" She promised to him, with a small smile on her face.

He smiled back at her and gently picked up her hand. "Your friendship…I'm not going to lose you all together!" He joked even as he felt his heart break, he didn't want to lose her…he couldn't lose her.

"Of course we can still be friends. I would accept anything else!" She laughed faintly and smiled up at him.

"Thanks. Oh and I'm not going to listen to you blabber on and on about the accountant though…you go to Lane or your mother for that!" He told her, trying not to let any pain enter his voice.

"Well that is if he wants me…" She trailed off with this forlorn look in her eyes.

Dean came closer to her and gently wrapped his arms around her small frame. "He'd be a fool not to…" He whispered in her ear before kissing her cheek and letting her go, hating himself for needing to be close to her one last time no matter how much it hurt.

Rory chuckled faintly at that but stopped when she looked into his eyes. They were studying her face so intently that she blushed and lowered her head. An idea popped into her head so she raised her eyes to meet his and cocked her head innocently to the side. "So do I get to play matchmaker and set you up with someone?"

"No! God no!" He exclaimed with a sad smile adorning his face. Rory just laughed as we made our way back into the Grand Hall and over towards my mother who was now standing with Sookie and Lane. Her mother gave her a questioning gaze and Rory gave her thumbs up.

"Oh honey, look at you! You look like a princess! Doesn't she look like a princess?" Sookie exclaimed joyfully before making Rory twirl in front of her.

"Well mom made the dress." She told her blushing softly.

"I also made the girl wearing it!" Mom said proudly earning a couple glances from others in the room.

"Hello, gross!" Rory told her, smacking her arm.

Rory can see Paris walking up to them quickly, not looking very friendly…not that she usually did or anything.

"Rory I need you!" She stated before dragging Rory into the hallway her and dean had talked in before. "He's not here!"

"Who's not here?"

"Tristin! I've looked everywhere! I called his house, I called his cell…I asked three girls I know he's dating!" Paris was fuming and looked like she might explode at any minute.

"Paris calm down! I'm sure he's here…" I told her calmly but on the inside I was panicking just like her. "He's probably smoking in one of the bathrooms or something!"

Paris looked slightly relieved and you could see her relax a bit. "Good thinking, Gilmore. I'll check the west men's bathrooms, and you check the east." She instructed before walking off.

They met back up right outside the Grand Hall empty handed. Paris went into one of her rants but Rory wasn't listening. She was busy coming up with the worst case scenarios about what had happened to Tristin. Things from how he had forgotten about the play and had gone out on some date, or that he had been driving down to the school and had gotten in a car crash. Both of them were awful to her…but she didn't get to think up anymore because Tristin walked up to them.

"Where have you been? You have to get dressed; we're on in thirty minute minutes!" Paris yelled, advancing threateningly on him.

"Can't," was all he said to her.

"What?" She asked in a voice that could freeze hell over.

"Actually, my dad had me pulled out of school. He…" He stopped talking as Paris huffed and walked back into the Grand Hall. "… and is she unhappy."

Rory's mind had gone blank when he said he'd been taken out of school. She must have heard wrong…he couldn't leave. Not now, not when she had just realized her feelings for him. "What do you mean he had you pulled out of school? What happened?" She asked when she got her voice back.

"Nothing, just ticked the old man off, that's all." He said it casually but inside his heart was breaking. This was the lat time he would see her, the last time he would talk to her…

"By doing what? Tristan, come on, tell me." Rory asked desperately, tears beginning to form in her eyes.

"I got in some trouble."

"Trouble involving?"

"Involving Duncan and Bowman, and Bowman's dad's safe." He told her guiltily looking down at his shoes. "I mean, Bowman had a key. It was supposed to be no big deal. And then the crazy silent alarm kicked in."

"You broke into Bowman's dad's safe?" This time her voice held some amusement but mostly dejection.

Tristin studied her closely. He could swear he heard something in her voice, saw something in her eyes. He blamed it on his hope that maybe she felt the same way so he just solemnly nodded his head.

"Stupid." Rory told him, scratching the back of her neck nervously trying to will the tears not to fall.

"I know." He bent his head a little. Was she crying?

All of a sudden she stood up straight, her face set in determination. "Well, okay, you can apologize and you can put back the money and you can explain that, I don't know you were going through something."

He smirked at that before answering with: "I was...I was going through his safe!"

"Why would you do this?" She asked him quietly…the question holding a hidden meaning.

"I don't know. I guess that's something I can ponder at military school."

"Military school!" She almost shrieked. No he couldn't go to military school!

"The police are letting our parents handle it, and in my case that means military school in North Carolina. At least my grandfather is trying to talk him out of it…" He trailed off once again.

"I don't know what to say…I…I don't know what to do…" She looked so small, so lost as she leaned back against the row of lockers behind her.

"Well, I imagine you're overwhelmed with the relief in knowing that soon I will be gone." He wanted to say it as a joke but it came out bitterly.

"I'm not…"

"Well, I'm a big boy. I can…What?" Tristin asked puzzled.

"You can't leave Tristin…Are you sure there's nothing you can…" She cut off by who she guessed was Tristin's father; call out to him that he wanted to talk with Tristin alone.

"I gotta go. So, I might kiss you goodbye but, uh, your boyfriend's watching. Take care of yourself, Mary."

He started to walk down the hallway and Rory became desperate. She wouldn't let him leave…he just couldn't leave not until he knew how she felt…

"Tristin wait!" She cried and ran as fast as she could towards him. He had stopped just at the end of the hallway. His father and an older man, his grandfather, were standing a few feet away. "Tristin you can't leave…" She told him quietly the tears streaming uncontrollably down her cheeks.

To say that Tristin was shocked would be an understatement. He carefully lifted his hand and brushed the pad of his thumb against her cheek, wiping away her tears but they just kept falling.

"Please don't leave…Tristin…please…" She managed to tell him before her knees gave out and she collapsed into his arms.

Tristin's arms didn't hesitate to wrap around her petite waist bringing her body a lot closer to his. She buried her head into the crook of his neck, soaking his shirt with her tears. Still in a daze he tightened his grip around her waist and brought on hand up to comb through her silky hair, trying to comfort her.

Standing, forgotten, by the doors into the school, Mr. Dugrey and Dugrey Senior watched the whole thing act out. They had been having a heated discussion while Tristin went to tell his friends that he would be leaving. Dugrey Senior had almost won his argument when the whole thing had happened.

Dugrey Senior looked over at his son, eyes telling him exactly what he had to do, and not leaving it up to discussion. "You let Tristin stay here, someone here needs him." He told his son evenly, before looking back at his grandson and the girl sobbing and shaking in his arms.

Carter Dugrey looked over at his son, and watched as he placed a gently kiss on the girls head before laying his head against it. He looked back over at his father. "She's a Gilmore right? Richard's granddaughter…"

Janlen Dugrey rolled his eyes at his son, something's never changed. "Yes, Carter, she's a Gilmore."

"Yes, then, Tristin has one month to improve his grades and his attitude…" He told Janlen but he was looking at his son who had pulled Rory's head back and was wiping her tears away. "You can tell him the good news." And then he was gone, disappearing into the night.

Tristin placed his hands on each side of Rory's head, cradling it. "Rory, what's wrong?" He asked her softly.

Once Rory got control of her emotions she looked up into his eyes, drowning in how blue they were. "You can't leave…you can't leave me…" She said it so softly that she was afraid he hadn't heard her but to him it had been like she shouted it.

Tristin's heart sped up, he had never thought she would ever talk to him like that…with that 'crying for help' tone. He unconsciously pulled her closer, her heat warming him to the core. "What's wrong, Mary?"

She brought her hand up to his chest and took hold of his shirt in her fist, clutching it. "You can't leave, not now. I just broke up with Dean and if you leave then…"

Her comment about Dean had shocked him even more. "You broke up with the bagboy?" He cut her off mid-ramble and gently pushed her out of his embrace.

Rory pulled back completely, drying her tears and thanking god for water proof makeup. As she busied herself Tristin slowly started to move closer to her, making her back up into the lockers. When her back hit one he swiftly curled one of his hands around her waist and the other resting right beside her head. She was trapped.

She lowered her head, trying to hide her blush among other things. But Tristin wouldn't allow it. He hooked one finger under her chin and raised her head. He lifted his eyes, and what he read in hers made him sharply draw in his breath. He'd never expected to see love in those blue depths.

Rory didn't know what to do. With the news that Tristin would be leaving she didn't know if it was wise to tell him, to bare her heart to him. She had had this argument with herself more times than necessary but it was never resolved. It would always come down to the fact that she didn't know if she could trust Tristin with her heart. She was faltering, on the brink of running away and in danger of falling into his arms all at the same time.

"Rory." His voice was soft and soothing to her ears, she turned her head slightly so she could see his face. "I need you to tell me what's wrong. I can't have you like this…it's killing me."

Rory felt like she was falling, no longer teetering on the edge of something, she had dived right into it. On seeing his face so gentle and tender and hearing his voice filled with love, she found herself swearing off everything if only he could stay with her.

Tristin ran his fingers through her hair, loving the feel of its silky, smooth texture against his skin. "Baby, please tell me what's wrong," He pleaded with her while continually stroking her hair in an effort to soothe her.

"Paris is going to be really mad at me…" She spoke at last and it made Tristin feel marginally better that she was still on planet earth. "My grandmother's gonna be mad…I was supposed to meet her…"

"You're grandmother talks very highly of you. I've talked with her before at some charity events. She's a great woman." Tristin knew that she was stalling but he was happy that at least she was talking to him.

Rory slowly brought her hand to rest on his where it lay on her hair. "She told me about that. She also says you played golf with my grandfather or something…" At his curt nod she continued. "She said for someone who's so young you're pretty good at the game. He liked you, you know. My grandmother did to… was concerned that I was too mean to you and gave me some big lecture about it. Did I mention they both liked you?"

"Yeah, Mary, you did." Tristin knew that she was justifying something to herself by what she was saying. That both of her grandparents liked him.

"Did I mention I like you?" Her voice was quiet and just on the edge of his hearing.

It was like a bombshell. Tristin's head filled with blood and emotion that he struggled hard with to control. This was a frail admission that she liked him, but it was what he had been waiting for forever.

"Rory, I…"

"Shh…" Rory pressed her fingers to his lips. "Don't say anything. Just listen." She was beyond nervous; she was taking her mothers advice though. She was following her heart.

She carefully removed herself from his embrace and started to pace in front of him. From the corner of her eye she saw an old man standing by the entrance but she knew she had to get this over with so she chose to ignore him. She wrung her hands nervously before stopping in front of him and tilting her head to the side innocently.

"We had a pretty bad beginning." She started and saw how Tristin lowered his gaze almost guiltily. "Doesn't matter now. You see I've been thinking a lot about the relationship we had and I've come up with this. Maybe we threw all that stuff at each other because we never wanted to admit to ourselves that we had feelings for each other."

"Rory?" Tristin asked her with an apparent awe in his voice as he reached out to touch her.

"I mean." She frowned and met his eye. "Maybe all that time we were working so hard against the connection that we felt to each other, so hard that we blinded ourselves to it. We were so busy trying to hate each other that we missed how we really felt."

Tristin narrowed his eyes and pulled her closer to him. She willingly melted into his embrace and found herself cuddling up to him.

"I can remember wanting nothing more than to put you in your place but I never could." She let her head rest on his strong chest.

"Same here, Mare, from the first moment I saw you I knew it was over. I lost myself in you but found myself all at the same time." Tristin knew he was putting his heart on his sleeve…baring himself to her and he was pretty damn scared because she had the power right now to break him.

"I do love our little fights though, you always leave me feeling frustrated yet fulfilled even though I haven't managed to win." Rory again stepped back and looked up at him. "I wish you didn't have to go…"

"Why? I thought you would have been happy…but then again guessing from what you just told me I'm not quite sure what you're feeling."

"I wouldn't have been happy to see you leave even if I hated you. If you had left a couple of months ago then I probably wouldn't have given it that much thought."

"And now?" Tristin asked her hopefully.

"And now all I can think is how much I'm going to miss you, how I'm going to blame myself…"

"This isn't your fault, Ror; I'm the one who got caught…" He quickly intervened and tried to reassure her, he didn't want her beating herself up over this.

"Not about that…I just can't help but feeling that if I hadn't been so stubborn maybe we might have actually had a chance." The tears she had managed to hold back started to fall again but she didn't move to stop them this time.

"You still have that chance, it's not too late." A deep voice told them. Rory looked over at the man that had been leaning against the entrance before and was now walking over to them.

"Grandpa, what do you mean? Dad's sending me to military school!"

Tristin's grandfather came over to him and put a hand on his shoulder. "No he's not."

Tristin was shocked, and he stood there with his mouth hanging open for a minute before quickly asking his grandfather why.

"Well it seems that your friend here happens to be the granddaughter of Richard Gilmore, one of your father's business associates and good friends. We had almost come to an agreement when she came into the picture." He told us but kept his eyes focused on Rory making her blush and look down at her shoes.

"What does that mean!" Tristin asked his grandfather again, his eyes burning with hope.

"It means that he has made a deal. If you can improve your grades along with your attitude in the next month then you may stay here." His serious face broke out into a grin and he laughed slightly at the expression on Tristin's face.

"But what does that have to do with me?" Rory asked him timidly.

Janlen looked over at her and walked closer, resting his hand on her shoulder like he had done with Tristin just moments ago. "Well it seems, miss that you come from a very wealthy family and carry a very prominent name." Rory looked a bit confused as to why this would matter and Janlen knew at once that she obviously hadn't been brought up here in Hartford. "Status means everything to Carter Dugrey. He is more than thrilled to see his son in the company of someone like you."

The two teens seemed to take this information in for a while before they both broke out into goofy smiles.

"Well I just wanted to tell you the good news. I will leave you two alone now." And with one more affectionate pat on Tristin's shoulder, the old man walked down the corridor and into the Grand Hall.

"Oh my God! Tristin did you hear that, you're not leaving!" Rory exclaimed this time crying with tears of joy.

Tristin was smiling like a fool but he didn't care. He advanced on her and grabbed her by the waist, spinning her around in his arms. Coming to a stop he saw Rory was laughing and staring happily into his eyes.

Neither of them had noticed the audience they had, the way they were acting they probably wouldn't notice if it starting raining fire and brimstone. Lorelai, Lane, Sookie, and Janlen were all watching them from the entrance into the Grand Hall.

"Mary." Tristin breathed as he held her in his arms, her feet dangling off the ground.

"Bible Boy." Rory wrapped her arms around his neck and smiled her 'I love you' smile.

Tristin then crushed his mouth against hers and she responded immediately, wrapping her legs around him she pulled his mouth tight to hers and kissed him back deeply.

The whole world dropped away as Tristin's tongue sought Rory's; she tackled it and let the kisses turn gentle. A feeling in her stomach rose up and she felt this amazing heat spread throughout the body. Tristin softly moved his lips against hers, brushing them delicately and quickly as he pulled her closer to him.

"Tristin…" Rory caught his eye and he could tell that she was trying to say something but looked scared.

"Shh…We have all the time in the world, Mare." He smiled then silenced her by pressing his mouth back against hers. He saw the love in her eyes and that was good enough for him.

Rory realized she really liked the feeling of his mouth covering hers, it was so comforting and it made her whole body sing. She was melting inside and felt sure she would slip from his arms into a pool on the floor. As if he knew what she was thinking Tristin held her tighter and let his tongue slip into her mouth softly tangling with hers.

Tristin easily turned her around and pushed her against the lockers, offering her more support. Giggling softly Rory leant forward and pressed her mouth back against his, feeling his hands run up her thigh. She was growing very hot and flushed and she knew they would have to stop before it was too late. So she quickly turned her head away from his, smiling at the groan of dissatisfaction he let out.

Resting her head back against the lockers she let her fingers travel up from where they had been resting on his neck, into his hair, sifting through it. Tristin grinned at her and wriggled his hips mischievously, pushing himself harder onto her. Rory let her head fall to the side and finally saw the audience they had developed.

"Oh my God!" She whispered and slumped forward, trying to hide herself in Tristin's shoulder.

"What?" Tristin turned his head to see Lorelai waving at him with a big grin on her face; she then turned around and motioned everyone to leave them alone. "Maybe we should go some place more private." He arched a brow and Rory slapped his arm before freeing herself from his embrace, her cheeks still tinged pink.

"Come on Tris, let's go face the music." She planted one more kiss on his lips before grabbing his hand and slipping it into hers.

"You know I'm really glad you came after me." He told her squeezing her hand slightly.

"Yeah, me to." She returned the squeeze and together they walked back into the Grand Hall.

Okay guys I hope you liked this, I wrote it a while ago but I decided to post it now because I haven't updated in a while. Review this please and read my other stories.

Love you all,