Rory: The food is for the dancers.

Shane: Who are you Bobby Brady? Get a life!

Jess: Rory's feeling a little territorial today.

"Territorial? Over what, the sandwiches? You live over a diner you can eat anything you want. But hey if you want that sandwich so bad I'm too tired to argue with you over it," said Rory with obvious frustration in her voice.

"I'm not talking about the sandwiches," Jess said matter of factly.

"Then what are you talking about," Rory said as she became more agitated than she had been all day.

"Our relationship," Jess said with a smirk.

"Your what," Dean said as he walked forward trying to get into Jess' face. It took all of Rory's energy to hold her boyfriend back. She knew if she let go of him, he would hit Jess.

"Aww… is Andre the Giant still mad that I'm friends with his girlfriend," Jess said proudly, enjoying the rise he was getting out of Dean.

"Friendship? This is what you call friendship," Rory was upset now and Jess knew it. He could see her face turning red and her arms were flying around when she talked. "Jess we haven't been friends since I came back from Washington and found out you were dating her."

Jess began to get a weird feeling in his stomach and chest, a feeling of uneasiness. He could tell he and Shane being together hurt Rory, but he couldn't show it. For the first time Jess knew that Rory was feeling the same way that he felt every time he saw her with Dean.

"Washington, huh. Oh yeah that was that trip you had to go on for school right? Or was it something else?"

Rory was getting upset now. She didn't have to go on that trip, she could have stayed. What would have happened if she stayed though? Would she still be with Dean? Would Jess have ever started whatever it is he's doing with Shane? She had to stop doing this to herself, this inward battle of 'what if's' and 'did I make the right decisions'. She was about to open her mouth to respond when Taylor's voice came over the megaphone announcing that there was only five minutes left until the dance marathon continued.

"C'mon, let's go," Dean said to Rory as he put his hand on the small of her back to guide her away.

"Well Rory it was good talking to you. We should catch up again, maybe have some coffee." Jess couldn't help the sarcasm in his voice. She kissed him and left for Washington without an explanation, a goodbye, or even a "Jess that was a huge mistake." He spent half the summer wondering what she was thinking and the other half wondering how she would feel when she found out he was with Shane. His thoughts stopped there as he realized a shadow was growing over his face. He looked up to find the tall, wiry boy that Rory called a boyfriend.

"Stay away from her," Dean threatened as he walked away to catch up to his irritated girlfriend.

Jess and Shane both let out a frustrated sigh, although for two completely different reasons.

"I wanna go, this sucks," said Shane in a half whine.

"Yeah, well I want to stay," Jess said as if that was the end of the conversation. He couldn't go just yet. He felt that after months of avoiding each other they were finally coming close to a breaking point. Rory was upset about him and Shane being together. That was the first emotion she's shown towards him since her return from Washington. He couldn't let that go until he found out what it really meant. Good or bad he needed to know how Rory felt, and he had a feeling it wouldn't take much longer. Suddenly he was interrupted from his thoughts by a hot breath and a quite purr in his ear.

"If we stay you owe me," Shane cooed as the sound of her voice changed from displeasure to seductive.

"Whatever," was Jess' only reply. The only thing he wanted to do was see how his return to the auditorium would affect Rory. He didn't care what he had to do to get there. Making out with Shane wasn't a bad condition to this game he was playing by any means, but she would never be Rory. Not wanting to let his mind go off course again, he wrapped his arm around Shane's waist and lead her back the school auditorium.

"That guy is unbelievable," Dean ranted as he walked back into the auditorium with Rory by his side.

"Yeah, well that's Jess," Rory replied just wanting to get out of this conversation and get Jess off her mind. What was his problem? Getting mad at her when he's dating that brainless twit? And why did he care why she went to Washington anyway? It is very obvious he didn't miss her. I wonder how long after I left it took him to find Shane? One day, maybe two. Rory was suddenly shaken from her thoughts when she heard Dean say something condescending.

"What?" she asked, wondering if she heard right.

"I said that you were the one that had to be his friend," Dean said, his tone not sitting right with Rory.

Rory was about to answer with a nasty come back when a bouncing Lorelai came over and grabbed Rory's arm.

"C'mon if we're not on the floor when Taylor blows that air horn we're out and Kirk wins. Kirk will not win." Lorelai said in a very serious and business like tone. "Sorry Dean," Lorelai called over her shoulder. "She'll always choose me over you'," she told her daughter's boyfriend in a playful manner, not realizing what she had just interrupted.

Dean watched as Rory walked onto the dance floor with her mother. A thousand emotions were dancing in her eyes, but he could not decipher what they were. He knew she was angry and upset from the tone she used when she spoke, but there were also emotions shown that he could not recognize. He'd never seen them before, nor could he even try to name them. All he knew was that these new feelings she was displaying were not sitting well in his stomach. He had never felt so distant from her in all the time they had been together. He suddenly felt a required need for fresh air, maybe that would help him clear his head. He took one last look at Rory and walked out of the gym. He knew once they both cleared their heads everything would be okay.

Lorelai couldn't help but notice that Rory didn't seem as happy and carefree as she had before the break.

"What's up babe? Why the long and sorrowful face?" Lorelai asked wondering how her daughter's mood could have changed so quickly, it had only been fifteen minutes since they last saw each other.

"Jess. Dean. Sandwiches," Rory rambled off.

"Must have been an interesting fifteen minutes. Care to elude what Jess and Dean were doing to these sandwiches or do I not want to know?" Lorelai asked, raising her eyebrows for the last part of her question hoping her daughter would catch on to the innuendo. Something had to make her laugh.

"Jess was just being Jess. And Dean was just protecting me, until he started in about Jess and I being friends again. God, Jess and I haven't spoken in months. Can't he just get over it?" Rory was frustrated with the whole storyline that continued to repeat itself between the three of them. Jess and Rory have a conversation, Dean gets jealous, Rory has to defend her friendship to Dean and try once again to convince him that there is nothing going on. The last part a habit that easily came back to her after not having to do it for awhile. This was the first time Rory and Jess had a conversation that consisted of more than hello and goodbye since the day he helped her turn the sprinklers off, and it couldn't even be considered a friendly conversation. Rory wished for the days where they could just sit and argue over books for hours. She missed his sarcastic remarks. Her memory suddenly flickered back to the day she went to New York to see him. She could very clearly hear is playful voice as he called her an out of towner. What had happened to them?

Lorelai watched as her daughter drifted farther and farther into her own thoughts. At one point she even thought she saw the flicker of a smile on her daughter's face. She almost didn't want to interrupt, but her curiosity as to the goings on in her daughter's mind got the best of her. "Whatcha thinking about?" Lorelai asked. "Something dirty?"

"You know not everyone's mind is in the gutter twenty-four hours a day."

"But where else could it be?"

Rory couldn't help but laugh at her mother's comment. Lorelai always had the ability to make her forget about anything without even trying. Her mind only stayed off Jess for a moment though because the second her mother twirled her around she caught a glimpse of her "friend" staring at her. Suddenly she became very self-conscience. Even though her back was now turned towards him, she felt his eyes on her. They burned into her and left her feeling tingly. Why did he have to do that? Well if he was going to watch her, she was going to watch him back. She twirled her mother and swung her around so she was now facing Jess. Her eyes immediately locked into his. She couldn't turn away, it was like some force that had control over both of them. Suddenly the tingles she was feeling before took over her whole body. What was he doing to her and why couldn't she turn away? The truth was that she didn't want to turn away. She liked the way Jess was looking at her. At the acknowledgement of that thought, a small smile escaped her lips. She hadn't meant for that to happen, but she couldn't take it back now. Just as she was about to berate herself, she noticed something about Jess' face. He looked as if he were smiling too. Not one of his trademark smirks, but a real genuine smile. This act took Rory by such surprise that she didn't realize her leg had crossed in front of her mother's. With a loud thud Rory was awoken from her thoughts to find her mother on the floor in pain.

"Owwww!" cried Lorelai from the floor holding her ankle.

"Oh God, mom are you okay?" Rory was suddenly in a panic. This was her fault.

"I'm okay sweets, just a little throbbing pain. Just help me up before Taylor disqualifies us," Lorelai demanded of her daughter. There was no way she was letting a little accident like this keep her from beating Kirk's puny little butt.

"Mom you can barely stand up. Your right foot isn't even touching the ground. You need to sit."

"Nonsense young one. Mommy only needs one leg to dance. It's a talent really." Lorelai was trying to make her daughter feel better. Hell, she was trying to make herself feel better. She was not walking off this dance floor unless that trophy was in her hand. Reality, however, had other plans for her. As she tried hard to put her right foot on the floor, she fell over again. Her ankle was too weak to hold her up.

"Mom we need to get you to a doctor. You're really hurt." Rory was now pleading with her mother.

"It's just a sprained ankle Rory. Give Mommy some ice and she'll be as good as new."

At that moment Luke appeared by the girls' sides. He had seen Lorelai fall over and was worried.

"Hey are you okay?" Luke asked.

"I'm fine." Lorelai tried standing up again but couldn't do it.

"You're not fine, you're hurt. I'm taking you to get ice." Luke wasn't suggesting anything. His voice made it clear that even if he had to carry her there himself, Lorelai was being taken off this floor.

"But Luke the contest. We have to win," Lorelai was whining. She had worked so hard and had come to far for this to happen. There were only two hours left to the marathon.

"You can't stand, please explain to me how you are going to dance?" Luke's voice did not bother to hide the frustration from his voice.

"I'm the one legged ballroom dancer. People will come from near and far to watch me gracefully hop across the floor," Lorelai said in a tone of dreaminess and delight.

"Lorelai," Luke growled.

"Okay, Okay. Where's Dean?" Lorelai asked as an idea entered her head.

"Why, is he going to be your partner in the one-legged dance Olympics?" Luke asked beginning to become slightly amused by Lorelai's antics.

"No he's going to be Rory's new dance partner and beat the pants off of Kirk." Lorelai explained as if it were obvious.

"Mom I don't see him, let's just go."

"No I'm not leaving this dance floor unless you have a partner." Why couldn't they understand how important this marathon was to her. She was beginning to become desperate. As she looked around the auditorium for Dean, she came across someone else. Although she wasn't thrilled about this decision, she felt desperate. She let out a small breath and yelled across the auditorium. "Jess"

Jess approached the group on the dance floor very cautiously. Lorelai's invite made him nervous. Not only was she a little off, but she made no secrete of her distrust of him. "Hey Lorelai. Nice landing, very graceful." He made no effort to hide the sarcasm in his voice. "Need some new legs?"

"Something like that," Lorelai stated with a huge smirk plastered across her face.

"Him!" Rory shouted with a look of her horror on her face.

"Him!" Luke repeated as he fought to control the laughter that was escaping his lips.

"I'm not giving up. And I'm certainly not losing to Kirk. Since your own personal Ken doll has seemed to have disappeared, Jess is our only hope." Lorelai then leaned over to Rory and mumbled, "God I'd never in a million years thought that I'd say those words."

"C'mon mom, your hurt. We can beat Kirk next year." Rory was now pleading with her mother. With the emotional roller coaster that Jess was putting her through today. She didn't think she would be able to make another two hours with him, especially being this close.

"Rory c'mon be a team player here. Team Lorelai will not be defeated by Kirk, or anyone else." Lorelai was pleading back with her daughter. Why couldn't she understand how important this was to her. She wasn't thrilled to have her daughter this close to Jess, but desperate times called for desperate measures.

"Okay, I'm in it to win it," Rory replied knowing she'd been defeated. Lorelai always won arguments anyway, and she did not feel like wasting her time arguing over something she'd eventually have to do anyway.

"Oh thank you kiddo! You know you're my favorite daughter."

"I want to hear you state that in front of all your other daughters," said Rory, not finding this conversation amusing at the present time.

"Alright, let's go and get you some ice for that ankle," Luke said.

"Okay Dr. Danes. I'm also feeling a little light headed and dizzy. Can you take care of that too?" Lorelai said in her most breathless and dreamy voice.

"Make any more comments and you're walking to the diner!"

"But I like the feel of your flannel shirt against my face. It's soft." Lorelai replied excitedly. That wasn't the only thing she liked though.

As Lorelai and Luke walked away, Rory and Jess stood on the dance floor trying to ignore the awkward tension that was building up by the second. After a long minute of silence (the longest either had ever experienced), Jess finally spoke up. "Well we're not going to win like this, and if we don't beat Kirk your mother will hunt me down. I don't think I'll be able to hide this time."

"This contest means a lot to her. She'd probably cut your legs off too. Maybe hang them on the mantel for others to see." Jess let out a small laugh. Rory couldn't help but notice that this was the second time he smiled today, and they both had to do with her.

"So…" Jess said awkwardly, not knowing how to start this. Rory just shook her head at him, not uttering a single word.

The music had slowed down considerably. The marathon was almost over and the four couples left on the floor looked very close to falling over. Jess stepped a little closer to Rory, taking her hand in his. She willingly twined her fingers with his so he continued to move a little closer to her. As his body neared hers, she wrapped her other arm around his shoulders. Neither one knew the tingles that they were sending down each other's back.

Rory found it very difficult to look up at Jess' face. She was staring at their hands holding on to each other. Their fingers were wrapped so comfortably around each other's hand. She had never been so nervous and so calm at the same time. There was something about the way Jess was holding her that made her feel more safe than she had ever felt in her entire life. She still couldn't look at his face though. One look into those eyes and there was no way of stopping all the feelings that she had so perfectly hidden for months from coming out.

Jess watched Rory look everywhere but at him. He started to become nervous. When she first wrapped her arm around his shoulder he felt that the world and fate had finally turned in his favor. Rory, this beautiful girl that he had wanted and had been chasing after for months, was finally in his arms and it felt like heaven. But now he was beginning to worry. He willed her to just look at him, even if it was just a quick glance.

At this same time Rory was continuing her inward battle. Here she was wrapped in Jess' arms and she couldn't meet his gaze. She knew he was looking at her. She could sense the uneasiness in his stare. At that moment she knew he was just as scared as she was. She slowly raised her head until her soft blue eyes met his deep brown ones. Rory's heart swelled when their eyes locked, and her stomach was flip flopping all about. In that one look Rory Gilmore knew that what she had worked so hard to suppress was no longer worth hiding. She was in love with Jess.

Jess watched with hope as Rory's head appeared to be moving upward. He wanted so badly to know what she was thinking. Was she uncomfortable dancing with him? Had he gone too far and completely repulsed her? But when Rory's eyes finally met his, any doubt that had been in his mind quickly faded away. That one look held so much emotion, and it told him everything he needed to know. Rory wanted him the same way he wanted her. He couldn't hold his smile back. And it grew bigger as she returned the gesture.

One look at Jess' smile and Rory knew that something between them had changed. She wasn't sure what it was, but she knew she was happy about it. She returned the smile and slowly leaned in to rest her cheek on his chest. As she began to snuggle closer to him, his arm wrapped tighter around her. Rory didn't care what happened next, all she cared about was this moment in Jess' arms and how it made her feel.

Dean was sitting outside on the school steps. He didn't understand what was going on with Rory and the more he thought about it, the more confused he became. She seemed so happy this morning when he first arrived at the marathon. She had been talking about this thing all week and had wanted him to be a part of it. Then suddenly she turned into someone else. She became upset and distant. Dean knew why it happened. It was Jess. Rory had been fine until he walked into Miss Patty's studio and started in with her. Dean didn't like Jess or the fact that his girlfriend was, at one time, very good friends with him, but why did that punk have to throw their recent break of friendship in her face? And why did Rory let him affect her like that? That guy was never worth Rory's time or energy. Hopefully now she'd see that. Dean's thoughts were suddenly broken by the playful banter of two familiar voices. Across the street, heading towards the diner, were Luke and Lorelai. Luke was carrying Lorelai and he heard his girlfriend's mother say something about her ankle hurting. He was about to run across the street and ask if she was okay, but then he noticed Rory wasn't with them. She must be inside getting their stuff. He got up from the step he was sitting on and began to walk back inside the school to see if Rory needed any help.

As he walked back into the auditorium his eyes searched furiously for Rory. She wasn't by the coat rack or sitting in the stands. Suddenly his eyes focused on a sight that made his heart sink to the bottom of his stomach. In the middle of the dance floor, looking more angelic and peaceful than he had seen in a long time, was Rory with Jess' arms wrapped tightly around her. His first thought was to go over and beat the life out of the punk, but he decided to sit in the corner and watch them instead. As he sat and watched he noticed that Rory's head was resting on Jess's chest. Her eyes were closed. If he hadn't have seen Rory swaying to the music he would have thought she was asleep. Jess's arms were tightly around her shoulders, his hands gently rubbing her upper back. Just watching them there at that moment Dean knew that he had lost Rory. In reality he had lost her months earlier, but he finally realized no matter how hard he tried to ignore it Rory had fallen for Jess and nothing he could do could change that. His hands started to shake as tears started to form in his eyes. He thought he'd have her forever, that they would always be together. The thought of her not being in his life, not being his girlfriend, was too over powering. Dean had to do the hardest thing he knew he would ever have to do, he had to let her go.

Jess felt as if he were floating with Rory in his arms. He couldn't help staring at the top of her head and wondering if this whole experience was real or just some dream that he would wake up from at any minute. It wouldn't be the first time he had a dream about Rory that felt this real. He quickly glanced over his shoulder to Shane. She was asleep on one of the bleachers. Until that moment he had forgotten that she was even there waiting for him. He turned back and looked at Rory. She was everything he wanted: beautiful, smart, funny, opinionated, and open. Shane was a nice girl, but she had nothing on Rory. This thought made Jess appreciate this moment with Rory even more, and before he could think about what he was doing he leaned his head down and kissed the top of her head. When it was over he didn't berate himself, he just enjoyed the scent of her hair that still filled his nostrils.

Rory's whole body turned to jell-o when his lips touched the top of her head. She found it exhilarating that he could have this effect on her, and his lips only touched the top of her head. She suddenly remembered the kiss that they shared at Sookie's wedding and how it had warmed her entire body. She wanted so badly to feel that again, with him. She went to open her eyes to look at him, but saw something else instead. Rory's eyes locked on Dean as he sat there and watched them. Dean didn't look raged like he normally did when Rory and Jess were near each other, instead he looked sad and defeated and this broke Rory's heart. Dean knew. He knew what she had been hiding and that her feelings for Jess were deeper than any she had ever felt for him. She felt bad for him. She didn't want it to be like this, but she was about to break his heart.

Dean saw Rory staring at him, but he did not acknowledge her gaze. He wasn't ready to lose her yet, and he knew that is exactly what would happen when he went over to talk to her. There was only a half an hour left of the dance marathon; he would wait till then to speak to her. For now he would just savor the few minutes that he could actually call Rory Gilmore his girlfriend, by watching her dance in the arms of the man that will take her away.

Jess was enjoying the feeling of Rory in his arms more and more. As each second passed he was taken deeper and deeper into another world, a world where Rory and Jess were together. He focused on everything about her that was surrounding him: the way her soft hand felt against his own, the smell of her hair and perfume, and the feeling of pure excitement that was growing wilder in his stomach. Jess never wanted this moment to end. As he was thinking those exact thoughts he felt Rory's back and arms suddenly tense up. He wondered if he had stepped on her toe or had the realization that she was in his arms suddenly come to her and she was disgusted. He slowly lifted his head off of her own and turned to look at her. The reality of what he saw was worse than his fears. As he turned to look at Rory he saw what had made Rory react the way she did, Dean was sitting on the bleachers staring at them. He saw Rory staring back, wondering what was going through her head. She looked worried, but not the same type of worried he was used to seeing on her face when Dean had caught them together. This was different and it forced him to remember that Rory was Dean's girlfriend, not his. All he had was the memory of the kiss at Sookie's wedding and the dreams that occurred daily in his head. Oh yeah, and Shane.

"Go ahead," Jess said to Rory in a voice that sounded defeated yet gentle.

Rory looked up at Jess for a long time. She searched his eyes, trying to figure out if that was what he really wanted. Then something inside her caused her focus to move away from Jess and on to herself. Something inside her told her to stay and finish the competition off with Jess. At first she thought it was her mother's voice inside her head, threatening her not to let Kirk win. The more she listened the more she realized that it wasn't her head doing the talking, it was her heart. She wanted to stay with Jess, not only to win the contest for her mother, but also to be with him. She liked being in Jess' arms and she wanted to stay there, at least for another twenty minutes until the marathon was over.

"Thank you," she said to Jess looking straight into his beautiful brown eyes, "But I need to be here now."

"Rory, your mom will understand." Jess didn't want her to go, but he didn't want to get her and Dean into another fight. She always looked so tired and sad afterwards, not at all like his radiant Rory.

"Your right she probably would." Rory looked down as she said this. Her mom would forgive her, eventually. Rory would never be able to forgive herself, though. She had learned so much about herself tonight, and her heart. She owed it to herself to finish this night off in Jess' arms. Talking to Dean would be unpleasant, but here with Jess she was happy. She just wanted to be happy for a few more minutes. She was about to tell Jess that she was going to finish the marathon out, when she was interrupted by a loud cry.

"Get up!" Kirk screamed. "C'mon it's almost over."

Kirk's scream woke Taylor out of his drunken daze. He quickly looked out onto the dance floor, and saw Rory and a person he thought was Lorelai.

"The winners of this years dance marathon are Rory and Lorelai." Taylor than quickly turned to Ms. Patty and whispered, "Lorelai should really go home and get some sleep, she looks awful."

"So should you Taylor," Ms. Patty said back in a tone that implied that she was done with this marathon as well. "Good night!"

"Ohmigod, we won!" Rory cried, suddenly gaining the energy that usually only a cup of coffee could give her. She gave him a quick hug before showing him the trophy they had won.

"Yes we did. I guess my legs are safe for tonight?" Jess said with a smirk plastered on his face.

"For tonight, yes. But I still wouldn't get too attached to them," Rory said with an equally evil smirk escaping her lips.

Jess was about to say something else about his legs when Shane came up to the two with her jacket in her hands. "Can we go now," she whined while giving Rory a nasty look.

"Well, I guess I'm leaving," Jess said looking at Rory while cursing his "girlfriend" out in his mind.

"Thank you again. From me and my mom," Rory said.

Jess looked up and saw that Dean was heading towards them. "Your welcome," he said. "And I'm sorry."

Rory was about to ask for what when Dean appeared next to her.

"Are you ready?" he asked. He still didn't know what he was going to say to her. He still didn't want to believe it was over.

"Yeah." She turned to look at Jess but he already turned around and left. Rory was alone with Dean and thoughts that maybe everything she felt tonight wasn't real. She knew she should have left the auditorium happy that morning (she did have the trophy in her hand), but instead she left feeling more upset and confused than she had when she first came in.

Rory and Dean walked along the streets of Stars Hallow in total silence. Each one was consumed with thoughts of that long night and what any of it meant. As they approached the gazebo in the center on the square, Dean took Rory's hand and sat her on the steps.

"So exciting night?" He started out. His tone was a little harsher than he had intended it to be.

"Dean I'm sorry, " she pleaded. It was amazing how quickly they had resumed the same roles and defenses as last spring. "My mom hurt her ankle, and you know how badly she wanted to win. We tried to look for you. Where were you?" she asked, turning her defenses towards him.

"I went outside. I needed some air."

"Oh," was all she could say. She wasn't sure where this conversation was going. She thought Dean had figured her secret out. The fact that he might not know disappointed her, she didn't want to have to have 'that' conversation with him.

"So you danced with Jess!" Dean's anger was growing by the minute. He was finding it hard to control the upset, frustration, and anger he was feeling knowing that in a few minutes Rory would no longer be his.

"Dean, I'm sorry. I don't even know what to say." Rory could see his face calm a little, but his eyes were teary and when she looked into them she saw nothing but the raw emotion of pain that he was feeling. She was going to comfort him but his next request made her stop in her tracks.

"Tell me the truth Rory. Tell me how you love him. Tell me how you want him." Dean was screaming now. He took a deep breath and said the last part in a defeated voice, "Tell me that you don't want to be with me anymore." Dean couldn't stop the tear that fell down his cheek as he said this last part.

"Dean…" Rory started, but he put his hand up wanting her to stop.

"Rory if the next words out of your mouth are any form of denial, save it. I saw how you looked at him on that dance floor. I saw how he held you. You want him just as much as he wants you, you have for awhile. I've known it for months."

"I don't want us to end like this."

"I don't want us to end." Dean's voice was barely a whisper. "I can ask you not to leave me and to tell me that none of what I said is true, but then I'd be asking you to continue living a lie. I don't want that life either. Rory I love you, but my love isn't enough for you." Rory was starting to cry herself. He had to fight the urge to go over there and wrap his arms around her. "If he hurts you I'll kill him." His voice became aggressive again for a brief moment. The he walked over, grabbed Rory's hand, and kissed her fingers gently. "Goodbye Rory."

Dean walked away from the square teary eyed, while the girl he loved cried.

Jess stood behind the counter of the diner, looking out the window. It had been two days since the dance marathon, the last time he saw Rory. He had heard rumors that her and Dean were over, the town seemed to be buzzing at the idea. He wondered if she was mad at him or if she blamed him. Lorelai had come in to thank him for winning her the trophy. He wanted to ask her about Rory, but thought that would open up a discussion he wasn't ready to have with anyone. Anyone except Rory that is. After he had left the gym that night, he had gone to Shane's house. Her parents weren't home so of course he went inside. Once inside him and Shane had started to kiss, though, his thoughts journeyed somewhere else. He even allowed himself to believe for some time that it was Rory he was kissing. It wasn't until they broke apart and he opened his eyes that he realized he was with Shane and his heart broke. He mumbled something to Shane about not being able to do this anymore, apologized a few times, and then walked out the door. Rory's face had been haunting him ever since. He couldn't take it anymore. Did he make up all the emotions that he had seen in her eyes the other night? He was sure that he saw love and want there, but now he was convinced he was mistaken. Growing impatient with his thoughts, he decided to go to bed. He flipped off the lights in the diner and headed up the stairs, hoping it would not take long for sleep to consume him.

Rory had been hiding out in the house for two days now. She needed time to think about everything that happened and figure out where to go from there. After breaking up with Dean, Rory came home to share the exciting news of the win with her mother. After spending time with a very excited and overtired Lorelai (a very dangerous mix), Rory went to her room and fell immediately asleep. The next morning she woke up before her mother and made coffee. She had to tell her about Dean before Miss Patty or Babette did. Rory explained her break up with Dean to Lorelai. She told her as much as she could without bringing Jess' name into it. She just wasn't ready to share that with her mother yet. She knew she would have to eventually, but she wanted to be sure she thought everything out before breaking the news to Lorelai. Rory and Lorelai spent the rest of their day sitting in front of the couch watching corny eighties movies and eating tons of junk food. Lorelai called it wallowing, Rory thought of it as avoidance. For months Rory had dreamed of Jess and what it would be like to be his, but now that there was nothing holding her back she was suddenly scared. Were her and Jess right for each other? She had been pondering the idea for two days straight and she still didn't have an answer. Sure they both loved books and music, and they shared the most intense conversations that she had ever had with anyone. Jess was different from her, though. As much as she would hate admit it, Rory was very naïve and Jess was not. Jess also had Shane, ditzy, curvy, "let me suck your face off with my perfect lips" Shane. There was no way he was going to drop Shane to be with her. She still couldn't get rid of the images and feelings that lingered from the dance marathon, though. Him holding her tightly, the feel of his hand rubbing her lower back, and the electricity that shot throughout her body when he kissed her head. Sighing at the repetition of her thoughts, Rory decided that if she got some sleep it would give her mind some time to rest. She turned out the lamp by her bed and snuggled further underneath her covers. As she closed her eyes Jess' face once again appeared in her head. "At least we can be together here," she said to herself as she fell asleep with a smile on her face.

Jess had been lying in his bed for two hours and he still wasn't the least bit tired. Every time he closed his eyes he saw Rory's face and began to wonder if he had been mistaken about everything he thought he saw in her eyes two nights earlier. Giving up on the idea of getting any sleep, he sat up in his bed and pulled a t-shirt over his head. He put on some shoes and quietly snuck out the door, he didn't want to wake Luke up. He didn't even know where he was going to go. The only thing he did know was that he couldn't lay in that bed any longer.

Jess began to walk around Star's Hallow aimlessly. Every sight he passed made him think of Rory. The town square where he bought her basket, the video store that had displayed her picture in the window until he rearranged some of the video tapes, even Doose's where they had that huge argument a few weeks ago made him think of her. He decided traveling through the town was only making things worse, so he started to walk down side streets. His thoughts drifted back to the argument they had when she returned from Washington. He had been so hurt by her lack of communication that he never thought about what she could have been going through as well. He didn't notice it that night, but as he thought about it now he could tell that she was hurt when she found out he was with Shane. Instead of recognizing that hurt he just continued to harass her about being with Dean. "Good going Mariano," he said to himself. Suddenly he stopped walking, trying to figure out where he was. When he looked up he couldn't help but laugh at the ironic situation he had gotten himself into. There in front of him stood Rory Gilmore's house.

He watched the house for a long time, thinking about the girl who lived inside of it. Not being able to control his desire to see her, he began walking towards the porch and up the steps. He walked around the house very quietly, not wanting to wake anyone (especially Lorelai) up. It only took him a few seconds to reach a familiar window, the window he tried to escape out of the first night he had come to this house. He looked inside and saw Rory sound asleep with blankets wrapped around her. While staring at her through the window his curiosity got the best of him. He leaned towards the house a little closer and gave the bottom of the window a small push. As he had expected the window was not locked and it opened easily. He carefully pushed it up the rest of the way and quietly began to crawl through the small opening. Breaking into Rory's house wasn't what he had planned when he left the apartment twenty minutes earlier, but then again there were many things that have happened with Rory that were not planned.

Jess made his way across the room so he could see her. She looked like an angel, sleeping so peacefully. He pulled the chair in the corner of her room over so he could sit down and watch her for a little while. He couldn't stay long. The last thing he wanted to have happen was to get caught in Rory's room, but he hadn't seen her in a few days. If this was the only way to see her, he was going to enjoy the little time he had.

He watched her face thinking about how beautiful she was. Her eyes were closed hiding those amazing blue crystals that hypnotized him every time he looked directly into them. Her lips were red and slightly parted. He could still remember the way they felt as she brushed them against his own at Sookie's wedding. He thought things would change for the better after that day. Instead they just became worse. He sighed and put his head in his hands, things were so messed up between them. They weren't really friends anymore.

"Jess?" Her voice was a small whisper.

He lifted his head in shock. She wasn't supposed to find him here. How could he have messed up like that? "Rory, I…I'm sorry. I…I should go."

She reached her hand out to grab his before he got too far away. "Wait. Don't go?" She wasn't even thinking about what she was saying. She was simply going on instinct, and she liked it. "What are doing here?" she asked as she sat up in her bed.

"Honestly? I don't know. I couldn't sleep so I went for a walk. I didn't plan on coming here, but when I got here…I dunno. I'm sorry I woke you."

"Despite the fact that it's 2 in the morning, I'm glad you're here. You left so quickly the other night I didn't have a chance to thank you." There was so much she needed to say to him, things that were more important than a thank you. She had a feeling that there would be time for that. If she just took her time, everything would be revealed.

"Your mom already thanked me, but your welcome. I'm just glad we won. I hate to think about the condition I'd be in right now if we hadn't."

Rory laughed at this comment. She knew her mom would have tried to do some damage on the boy had they lost. "Well I'm glad that you are in one piece," she said tilting her head to the side with a sincere smile across her lips.

"So…how are you?" he asked as he sat down at the other end of the bed. "I haven't seen you since the other night." He wanted to know if she really broke up with Dean, but he wanted her to tell him.

"I'm good." Rory knew that this was the perfect opportunity to tell him about her and Dean. She knew his reaction would tell her everything she needed to know. She took a deep breath and opened her mouth. "Dean and I broke up."

Jess' insides lit up. It was true. It was true and she didn't seem upset about it. "I'm sorry, Rory."

Rory was shocked at how sincere he looked and sounded. She knew she would have to say a little more before she could figure out where they stand. "It's actually okay," she told him. "It was a decision I had made, he just got to do it before I did."

Jess' hopes were now soaring. He had heard from the town gossips that Dean dumped Rory. He figured that she would be upset. He never expected that she wanted this breakup to happen. "You're too good for him," he whispered and she smiled.

They both sat there for awhile in a comfortable silence. Each knew the other needed time to react to what was being said and think about what they wanted to say back. Jess had to tell Rory that things with Shane were over, that they never really even started past the physical stuff. "I broke up with Shane." He looked straight into her eyes when he said it, he needed her to know that she is the only one he ever wanted.

"Jess…I'm sorry. What happened?" she asked. She knew what answer she was hoping for, but he had to say it.

"I was never really with her," he explained. His voice was getting softer and softer and his gaze was more focused on her than it had ever been.

"You were always with her…"

"Physically yes, but in my heart and my mind…we were never together." He needed her to understand him, to know that she was the only person he could want. "Ror, it's always been you."

Her heart exploded when she heard those words, the words that she had secretly been wanting to hear for months. This was finally happening. All she had to do was let it. She slowly removed the covers from her body and crawled across the bed until she was kneeling on the part of the mattress that was directly in front of his face. She took one of the hands that his chin had been resting on and entwined her fingers with his. Her eyes locked with his. She couldn't take them off of his own. All his feelings for her were revealed in that gaze, his want and desire, his love, even his protectiveness. She knew that the past two days were a waste of time, all she had to do was look at him and she knew that this was right. She leaned in closer to him, never breaking her eye contact and whispered, "I want you too." She caught a quick glimpse of a smile on his face before she brushed her lips against his.

The kiss started out very slow, both were just enjoying the fact that this was happening. It did not take long for the fire to start growing in their stomachs. Rory released his hand and wrapped her arms around his neck, as he wrapped both his arms around her waist protectively and bringing her closer to his body. Rory wanted to be closer than this and she pressed her body right up against his as her hands tore wildly through his thick dark hair. He seductively took her bottom lip into his mouth for a little nibble, before running his tongue over it. Rory opened her mouth for his tongue to explore every inch of its surface. Their tongues were massaging each other and their breaths were becoming ragged. They finally had no choice but to pull away. They rested their foreheads against one another and stared into each other's eyes again.

"Rory, I really want this," He said rubbing his nose against hers. "I really want…"

"Us," she finished for him.


"Me too," she said as she smiled at him and then lightly kissed his lips again.

"Good," he replied, then returned with another tender kiss. He looked at the clock and noticed it was five minutes till three. "I should go. I'll see you tomorrow?"

"Absolutly," she said with a smile on her lips. Their lips and tongues slowly came together again for a short, yet sensual kiss before he turned and climbed out the window.

Rory lay back in her bed knowing she wasn't going to get anymore sleep tonight. She looked up at the ceiling and covered her head with a pillow as she let out an excited scream. "Jess Mariano is my boyfriend!" she said before she turned over and closed her eyes.

Rory woke up the next morning and quickly got ready for school. All she could think about was going to the diner to see Jess. After taking a shower, she went into her room and put her Chilton uniform on. She rolled her skirt up a little higher than she usually did and left open and extra button on her shirt. She then went to the mirror to put her hair up. She was about to put it up into a ponytail, when she took a long look into the mirror and smiled. Her hair definitely looked better down. Finally she put on some blush and a lip-gloss that added a bit of color to her lips. As she walked out of her room, she yelled for her mom.

"Mom, c'mon. I need coffee and food before school."

"There's over an hour until your bus leaves, what is your…." Lorelai stopped speaking when she looked up and saw her daughter's appearnce. Short skirt, strategically opened shirt buttons, makeup; Rory was going to see Jess. "Wow, after two years of me begging you to roll your skirt up your finally listening to mommy. What's the occasion? Is it a boy?"

"Mom, I'm hungry. Let's go"

"Does this boy have a name? Does it rhyme with yes?" Lorelai knew the second Rory told her that she had broken up with Dean that this was coming. It explained why Rory looked confused over the weekend instead of heartbroken.

"Mom can we talk?" Rory asked she sat down on the couch. Lorelai followed her daughter with a hesitant look on her face. "I wasn't completely honest with you the other day when I told you about Dean. We did break up because it wasn't working, but part of the reason it wasn't working anymore was because of Jess. I really like him mom, and I know you think that he's a bad influence but he's not. He's not what everyone thinks he is." Rory stopped to look at Lorelai's reaction. She didn't look mad or even confused, although it was very apparent that her mother was thinking about something. She decided to put her mother's mind at ease and finish her story. "I want to be with him, mom. As his girlfriend."

Lorelai sat for a long time thinking about everything her daughter had just said. She had really liked Dean. He was so nice and kind to her daughter, but she also knew how much Rory had come to care about Jess. Jess was moody, rude, and sometimes reckless. But that always changed when him and Rory were together. Watching them talk or even just stare at each other you knew they were happy. Lorelai knew she couldn't stop this from happening, she just had to be there for Rory incase things went wrong. "Look Ror, I'm not Jess' biggest fan, but I am your biggest fan. I need you to be happy, and if Jess makes you happy than I'll support this relationship. But the second he makes you unhappy, he's dead!"

Rory hugged her mom tightly around her neck. "Thank you so much mom. I am happy, and I know you don't believe it right now but I don't think Jess will hurt me."

"Yeah, well that's an argument for another day, let's go to the diner Mary."

Rory turned around and gave her mother an evil glare.

"Sorry with the whole change of outfit you have going on it seemed appropriate."

The two girls walked out the door and walked to Luke's.

Jess had woken up extra early that morning. After getting back from Rory's he fell right asleep, but when Luke's alarm went off at a quarter to six he couldn't get back to sleep. All he could think about was seeing Rory. He knew that she'd come in this morning for her usual breakfast and coffee before school. Today would be different from every other day though, today she would come into the diner his girlfriend. He felt like he should do something special for her. He didn't want to buy her flowers. Dean probably did that for her all the time. Suddenly he had an idea, he ran down into the diner and went to the back kitchen. He knew she would love this.

At seven o'clock the bell over the door at Luke's rang announcing Lorelai and Rory's arrival. Jess looked up from the book he was reading at the counter and smiled at Rory. He looked at her very carefully, first locking eyes with her than noticing the rest of her appearance. He could not believe that this was his Rory. At that though he stopped himself, she was his Rory. She was now his girlfriend and he had never felt happier about anything in his entire life. As she moved farther into the diner and took a seat at a table, his need to be near her was uncontrollable. He grabbed the coffee pot and two mugs and walked over to them.

"Hey," he said with a huge grin plastered across his face.

"Hi," Rory said back with an equally large grin on her face.

"Ooooh, coffee!" Lorelai was clapping her hands waiting for Jess to poor her a cup.

Ceaser rang the bell from the kitchen and Jess told the girls that he would be right back. The second Jess walked away from the table Lorelai started to make googly eyes and kissing noises at Rory.

"Mom stop," Rory pleaded with her mother, but inside knew that she wouldn't.

"Rory and Jess sitting in a tree…" Lorelai began to sing in a high pitched, child-like voice.

"You are such a child," Rory replied with a small giggle. As embarrassing as Lorelai could make this, she had enjoyed hearing her name linked with Jess'. She was about to comment on her mom's immaturity when a plate a blueberry pancakes was placed in front of her. She looked up just in time to see a second plate, placed in front of her mother. She looked at Jess and smiled.

"We didn't even order yet," she said looking straight into his eyes with an uncontrollable grin across her face.

"I know," he said as he grabbed a chair and sat down next to her. "But I wanted to do something special for you." He gave her a small kiss on the cheek, not sure how much affection he should be showing her in front of her mom (or the rest of the town for that matter).

"Oooooh, I want my own servant to have pancakes waiting for me when I walk in," Lorelai whined as a pout formed on her face.

"Mom, Jess made pancakes for you too," Rory pointed out.

"Yeah, but he only did it because I'm your mother and he knows if he denies me food I'll deny him you," Lorelai said matter of factly with a wicked grin spread across her face.

Rory gave her mother a dirty look and Lorelai stuck her tongue out at her daughter.

"Jess, coffee," Luke yelled across the diner. Jess quickly refilled the girls' mugs and began to make his rounds around the diner. Both Rory and Lorelai sat and ate their breakfast.

"So…that was cute!" Lorelai said with an insinuating tone in her voice.

"Yeah, it was." Rory was smiling giddily as she said this. She knew that she had made the right decision by choosing to be with Jess. She looked across the diner towards him and caught him staring at her. He smiled at her and she smiled back. Even his smile was giving her butterflies. She didn't remember ever feeling this way when Dean looked at her, even when they first started dating.

Lorelai broke Rory from her trance. "Hey since you've found a new addiction can I have your coffee?" asked Lorelai.

Rory swatted at her mother's hand, which was reaching across the table for her mug. "A person can have more than one addiction you know."

"Not when one addiction is interfering with the other," Lorelai informed her daughter.

"And how exactly is Jess interfering with my coffee addiction?"

"Have you ever tasted cold coffee?" Lorelai asked and Rory shook her head. "Well keep smiling at Jess and you will." Lorelai again tried to reach across the table for the mug but Rory quickly raised the cup to her mouth and gulped the entire contents down.

"Evil child, turning on your mother like that. I went through hours of labor for you."

"And I will always be grateful to you, but can this tantrum wait till after school? The bus should be here." Rory asked her mother with a grin on her face.

"Have fun in hell," Lorelai said with a laugh as Rory kissed her on her cheek.

Rory went from her table over to the counter where Jess was standing.

"Hey, I just wanted to say goodbye," she said looking a little embarrassed.

"I'm glad you did," Jess returned with another smile on his lips. "I'll see you later." He then placed a small kiss on her cheek.

"See you later," she said with a blush as she turned around and walked out of the diner.

After she exited the diner, she stopped and put a hand on her cheek. She could still feel the warmth of his lips pressed against that same spot only a few moments earlier. She couldn't believe the feelings that she received from such a small kiss. She never would have thought such a small gesture could leave her so weak in the knees. She shook her head and decided that if she didn't walk to the bus now she would spend the entire day in front of Luke's thinking about Jess. She was about to cross the street when a hand grabbed her wrist. She turned around and smiled when she saw it was Jess.

"You forgot something."

"What?" she asked confused.

"This." Jess pulled Rory into a tight embrace as he gently brushed his lips across hers. He tried hard to keep the kiss innocent, a few long pecks on her lips, but then she wrapped her arms around his neck to pull him as close to her as she possibly could. Forgetting where he was, Jess sensually sucked her bottom lip into his mouth then gently licked the same spot with his tongue. This was all it took for Rory to open her mouth and invite him inside. Their tongues caressed each other as small moans escaped from both of their throats. Jess's arms rested on the small of her back and he pulled her as close to him as he could. Finally the need to breathe was urgent and they had to pull away. Jess rested his forehead against hers and they both stared into each other's eyes in a trance until the sound of the bus' breaks interrupted them.

"I have to go," Rory said in a breathy voice.

"Beat it," Jess said with a grin on his face before he brushed a quick kiss across her lips and let her go.

She was about to step off the curb when he called to her, "Rory?"

"Yeah," she said as she turned around and looked at him.

"That adjustment to your uniform is driving me crazy!"

Rory just gave him her sexiest smile and made her away across the street to the bus stop.

He watched her run across the street to catch her bus and he smiled as she turned and waved before disappearing. As he watched the bus slowly pull away he knew that he had fallen completely in love with Rory Gilmore.

The school day had gone by very slowly for Rory. She sat through most of her classes thinking about Jess and the kiss they had shared that morning before she left for school. A few times Paris had poked her and had given her warning glances, but her attention towards the teacher would only last a few moments before her mind was filled with images of Jess once again.

She thought about what he had said about her uniform and the unusual pleasure that arose within her as he said it. Dean had never said things like that to her. She doubted he had ever thought things like that about her. Jess had though, and that thought made her smile. Jess was attracted to her in so many ways, ways she had never known of.

When the bell rang, Rory ran to her locker to gather her books. She didn't notice Paris watching her in amusement.

"What's the rush Gilmore?" Paris asked with a grin on her face.

"What?" Rory asked confused. 'When had Paris gotten here?' she thought to herself.

"You look like you're in a hurry. Is Stars Hallow having another square dance in the middle of town?"

"It was a dance marathon with a big band theme," Rory said dryly even though she knew Paris was teasing her in her own weird and twisted way. "And for your information I just want to get home."

"Big plans with Dean?" Paris asked curious, even though she doubted Rory's daylong daze was about the tall bagboy. She had had met the James Dean wanna be with the bad taste in reading and she had told Rory that same night that he was very much into her.

"No plans with Dean. We broke up," Rory stated trying to sound at least a little disappointed. It must not have worked though cause Paris was grinning.

Paris smiled at Rory for a minute and then adjusted her books. She started to turn around and walk away, but stopped and looked Rory right in the eyes. "Tell Jess I said hi," Paris stated with a wicked, yet proud grin on her face. She then turned around leaving Rory to smile at her as she walked away.

Jess didn't have much better luck at school than Rory did. Promising himself that he was going to do right by Rory, Jess actually attended all his classes. When Lane saw him enter their World History class she smiled at him.

"Well, well Mariano. Fancy meeting you here," Lane said to him. "What brings you to school on this fine day?" she asked, already knowing the answer.

"I need me an education," he said without skipping a beat.

"And you just decided this now?" she asked in a teasing voice.

"We all need to grow up sometimes," he said to her with a small grin on his lips.

"I guess we do," Lane replied smiling at him. As she turned around in her seat she thought how happy her best friend would be if she could see this.

Jess spent the rest of the day trying to write notes for his classes and envisioning Rory in her uniform from this morning. 'Oh, God,' he thought to himself. 'If she only knew the things that I'm thinking about her right now. Her face would be so red.' That thought made him think about how beautiful she looked every time she blushed. He quickly looked at the clock and prayed for the next half hour to go by quickly.

Rory hopped off the bus when it stopped at the bus stop. She looked across the street at Luke's with a smile on her face and began to walk towards the diner. She had been thinking about Jess all day and couldn't wait to see him. When she walked in she went directly to the counter figuring that he would appear any minute with a coffee pot. She was a little disappointed when she looked up and saw Luke put a mug in front of her and pour her favorite beverage in the cup.

"Are you hungry?" he asked Rory with his pad and pen in his hand.

"I think I'll wait for mom, you know how she gets when I eat without her."

Luke rolled his eyes, but had a smirk on his face. He knew all to well what Rory was talking about. Lorelai never needed a reason to rant, but when she was actually given a reason it was worse. Luke started to walk away but then turned and quickly looked at Rory. "He's upstairs if you want to say hi."

Rory looked up when Luke spoke to her and smiled. "Thanks," she said as she picked up her school bag and headed for the stairs that led up to Luke's apartment. She had only been up there one or two other times, but that was before Jess moved here. Somehow she knew she'd be walking up these steps much more often. As she reached the top of the stairs she heard the radio blasting on the other side of the door. She envisioned Jess sitting on the couch reading a book. Realizing that she was standing in front of his door and would look stupid if he opened it and saw her, she reached forward and knocked. She immediately heard the volume of the radio go down and then his footsteps growing louder as they approached the door. She couldn't help but feel the nervousness grow in her stomach as his steps came closer. It wasn't until he opened the door and smiled at her that she realized she had been holding her breath. He leaned over and gently brushed his lips against hers before leading her inside.

"I hope I'm not interrupting you?" she said nervously. He did say that he would see her later, but they had never made official plans.

"It's a welcome interruption." As he said this he was walking closer to her. As they came together he wrapped his arms around her waist and smiled at her before he once again leaned forward and brought his lips to hers. He wasn't even close to satisfied with the kiss he had given her when she first came in, he needed more. They kissed each other sweetly and innocently, only letting their lips meet and giving them time to explore each other. After a few minutes Jess moved his head away from Rory's and brought her body to his in a tight hug. He still couldn't believe this was happening. He just wanted to enjoy every moment they shared with each other, so he held her close for a minute before letting her go. When he finally did she walked over to the table to see what he had been doing before she arrived.

"What's this?" she asked picking up his world history textbook and looking at it. It wasn't until she saw a notebook with writing in it that she realized what Jess had been doing. "You were doing homework," she said with a grin across her face.

"I don't know what you're talking about," he replied in a sarcastic tone.

"You can't do homework unless you've actually gone to the class that assigned said homework." Her smile was getting even bigger. She wanted Jess to go to school and do well. Besides the thought of him sitting behind a desk taking notes was cute. Actually, the thought of him doing anything would have been good.

"I might have dropped by a class or two," he said as he approached her with a flirtatious smile on his face.

"And what did you think?"

"I think I have to go back tomorrow to help completely formulate my opinion." As he finished this statement he wrapped his arms around Rory's waist and began to walk her backwards towards the couch. As the two came closer to approaching it, he delicately brought his lips to hers for a tender kiss. When the back of her knees felt the cushion behind them, Jess gently lowered them. Rory rested back against the armrest while Jess kneeled between her legs, neither allowing their lips to separate from one another's.

Rory felt her head getting dizzy. She couldn't think straight while she was kissing Jess. It was like the tingles that entered her body when their lips met had fully taken over and were making her do things she had only thought about late at night when she was alone in her room. Her hand ran up his back and across his neck. She made sure to run her nails gently across his skin, and slightly grinned when she felt the muscles in his neck contract with her touch. As she reached the top of his neck, she decided to sweep her fingers through his hair. She heard a deep, husky moan escape his lips and she swept her fingers through again. She was so lost in him that she didn't realize Jess had moved his arms up to her shoulders, pulling himself closer to her. As he came closer to her she let her body sink down deeper into the couch. Jess started to climb on top of her, letting his torso run against hers.

When Rory started to rub his back, Jess felt chills run up and down his spine. He didn't want to react like this with her, she got embarrassed so easily and he didn't want his loss of control to ruin what was happening between them. He never expected her to grin from his reaction. He couldn't believe that his Rory was getting pleasure out of making him feel this way. That thought only encouraged him and he started to run his hands across the bottom of her back and then up her sides. As he was letting his hands caress every inch of her back, she had begun to run her fingers through his hair. This caused him to loose even more control of himself and he let out a groan as he pulled her body close to his. Rory slowly started to sink lower into the couch and he took full advantage of crawling on top of her, allowing their bodies to touch and rub against each other. Just as he was about to move his lips from her mouth down to her neck he heard footsteps coming up the stairs. He quickly jumped off Rory as the door to the apartment opened.

Luke opened the door to tell Rory that Lorelai was down stairs and hungry, but found it difficult to form the words when he saw the state the two teens were in. Jess had his hands in his pocket with his head down, and Rory had a red face and hair hanging out of her ponytail. Needing to get Rory out of the room before he killed his nephew, he quickly told Rory that Lorelai was downstairs and had already ordered food.

She quickly grabbed Jess' hand and smiled before picking up her school bag and walking out the apartment door.

As soon as Rory was gone Luke looked at Jess and cleared his throat. "I don't want to know what was going on before I walked in here. I'm not even going to ask. I am going to give you a warning though. You do not hurt her and you do not force her to do anything. You got it?

Luke's voice was very harsh. Jess knew he thought of Rory as a daughter and would always protect her, but he thought Luke understood how he felt about Rory, that he would never hurt her. "I won't hurt her, I could never hurt her!" Jess yelled this at his uncle. "She means everything to me!"

"She should," Luke said before walking out of the apartment and closing the door.

Jess ran his hands through his hair and sat down on the couch. He would never be able to hurt Rory. Can't everyone see that by the way he looks at her? It wasn't enough to just prove that fact to Rory, he now had to prove it to his uncle and Lorelai. He would though. Rory was too important to him, and he needed Luke and Lorelai to understand that.

Rory stepped out into the hallway after closing the apartment door. She took the elastic band that had been holding her disheveled hair out. She quickly combed her fingers through her hair before continuing her walk down the stairs. As she walked out from behind the curtain she saw her mother sitting at a table being hassled by Kirk about his latest idea to make money.

"Lorelai my new line of bathrobes will provide the guests at your inn with a comfort that they have never experienced. And with our wide range of colors, none of guest would ever have to match," Kirk said in his business voice.

"Why would my guests see each other in their bathrobes?" Lorelai questioned. "So not the point. How about I take one of your catalogues and I'll get back to you?

"Don't wait to long, these babies are going to sell like hotcakes."

"Ok. Thanks again Kirk." Lorelai said with a fake smile plastered across her face.

As Kirk walked away, Rory decided that it was now safe to join her mother at the table. "What's Kirk selling now?" she asked Lorelai as she sat down across from her mother.

"Bathrobes. Do you want one?" Lorelai asked with a wicked grin on her face.

"There's just something creepy about wearing a bathrobe that was designed by Kirk."

"Tell me about it. So how's lover boy?"

Rory couldn't help but smile at her mom. "He's good."

"Were you upstairs doing something dirty?" Lorelai loved teasing her daughter. Her face was now a shade of red darker than she had ever seen before.

"Mom we haven't even been officially dating for a full 24 hours, there was nothing dirty going on."

"Well mommy's going through a rut with men and needs to live vicariously through you. So spill, what kind of kisser is he?"

"I am not discussing this with you." Even as she fought her mother she still could not contain the smile that was quickly making its way across her lips. She began to berate herself when she felt her face getting hot, which she knew meant that it was a lovely shade of red.

"Ahha, I knew it! Jess is a great kisser. All the bad boys are." Lorelai was enjoying this too much. Just as she was about to ask another question, Jess came out from behind the curtain. Lorelai looked over at him and waved him over to the table with a grin on her face.

Jess approached the table knowing that what Lorelai was about to do wasn't going to be good. He smiled as he neared the table and greeted Lorelai.

Lorelai grabbed his head and started to inspect his face.

"What are you doing?" he asked.

Lorelai ignored his question and turned to Rory. "Oooh!" she said giddily. "He has great lips. Now I know why your face is so red."

Rory put her head down on the table, while Jess laughed and walked away. As embarrassed as he was right now, he was relieved to see Lorelai joking around with him. He was worried how she was going to react, especially after the way Luke had just caught him and Rory upstairs. Instead she was treating him just like he used to watch her treat Dean. In fact she seemed a little more daring with him. He suddenly felt his insides light up. As he stood behind the counter staring at Lorelai teasing his girlfriend he just knew that everything was going to be perfect.