It had been an amazing night, Amber was dethroned, Mrs. Von Tussle exposed and fired, the Corny Collins show was integrated and Link Larkin was kissing Tracy Turnblad. It was perfect, it was amazing, it was wonderful.
Then Tracy was arrested. Sure, se was cute and everyone had enjoyed the show, but she had assaulted a police officer and they took that thing very seriously.
Edna was in a tizzy, scurrying about hovering over the officers begging them not to take her baby girl away. Wilbur was asking them if hand cuffs were really necessary and couldn't they just let the whole thing go just this once? Tracy was telling them it was okay and that she'd be alright and "Please don't cry Mama." All the while her eyes kept returning to Link, who was trying both to stay close and out of the way as he chewed his lip and never took his eyes off her.
Even Corny and Mr. Spritzer were in on the chaos, Corny trying to charm and Mr. Spritzer trying to bribe, but all to now avail. A dozen officers lead a somber, but still trying to be cheerful, Tracy out through the studio doors, leaving a small group of worried looking friends behind her.
"Wilbur, we need to go down there and bail our girl out of jail!" Edna declared clinging to his skinny are as though he were her life preserver. "She can't spend the night in the hoosegow!"
"I know, I know, sweetheart, but I'm not sure what I can do about it, after the march… hun, we're flat broke!"
"Don't worry, Edna," Maybelle said with authority. "We aren't gonna leave Tracy in Jail."
"We'll take up a collection, Mrs. Turnblad," Seaweed offered helpfully
Seaweed looked at his mama and then at Penny and they looked doubtfully back at him.
"Probably not, Hun," Wilbur said. "They have to charge her and do who knows what else, even if we can get the money in time..."
During all this Link had stood quietly by, his hands shoved into his pockets as his blue eyes darted from one person to another. When they all went silent, standing there looking frustrated and out of ideas he spoke up suddenly, startling Edna who had been deep in thought.
"What was the cops name?" he asked.
"What?" everyone seemed to say each with their own sense of timing.
"The police officer Tracy supposedly assaulted? What was his name?" He asked again this time a bit more assertively.
"Why, I think… Morris?" Edna turned to her husband. "Is that what they said on the news dear? Sergeant Mike Morris?"
"Yes, I think so, that sounds about right."
"Mike Morris," Link repeated and a slow smile quirked up the side of his mouth. He reached inside his tux jacket and pulled out his wallet. Opening it he pulled out several bills and shoved them at Seaweed. "Here, this is all the money I have on me. You take up a collection just incase this doesn't work!"
"In case what doesn't work?" Seaweed called after his retreating back.
Link turned only slightly and said, "There's no way my baby doll is spending the night in jail, not if I have anything to say about it!" and then he winked at them before he disappeared out the door.
"That boy has entirely too much cheek," Edna said with a small frown.
"I think I like him," Wilbur said and she turned to him with a bit of a smile.
"I think I do too."
Tracy sat on the small cot, with her hands folded in her lap, trying desperately not to be upset. She had done what she set out to do, Seaweed and Little Inez would get to dance on TV. Hopefully it would be a step in the right direction. Hopefully it would help more things start to change. She'd be okay, this was a small price to pay for doing what was right. She sniffed as she felt a tear escape and slide slowly down her cheek.
There was the sound of keys at the door, and she quickly wiped her face as an officer stepped inside. "Come with me, Miss Turnblad, you are free to go."
"What? Why… how?"
"Morris has dropped the charges," the officer said simply and then looked at her curiously. "I don't know how that happened, that Morris can be a real as… er… stubborn fella sometimes."
"I guess her had a change of heart," Tracy said, still uncertain but always ready to believe the best of anybody.
The officer took her through the heavy wooden double doors and out into the waiting area where she scanned the room for her parents. She was sure they had somehow had something to do with getting her out and she desperately wanted to hug them and then go home. Her eyes scanned the room, not finding her parents at all but and equally familiar slender figure leaning against the back wall.
Link Larkin. Tracy knew his frame almost as well as she knew her own face and she gasped slightly in surprise when she saw him standing there. He was still dress in his tux from the pageant. He was studying his feet with the white tux jacket hung over his shoulder, hooked on one of his long fingers and his suspenders hung uselessly at his hips. His bow tie was undone and hanging limply from his neck and several buttons on his shirt were undone. She remembered again that he had kissed her and suddenly warmth and affection for him flooded her, more than she had ever felt when she'd watched him once upon a time, loving him from afar. This feeling was entirely different.
"Link?" she said stopping while she was still a little ways from him. He looked up suddenly, his blue eyes quickly registering that it was indeed her before giving her body a sweeping inspection as if looking for any damage.
"Trace, are you alright, are you okay?" he demanded striding across the room to her on long legs. "Did they hurt you? Were they mean?"
She almost laughed, but then he was holding her and she didn't want to laugh, she wanted to get lost in his warmth and the way that he smelled. "No, they didn't hurt me, I'm fine Link. What are you doing here?"
He did laugh and she felt the rumble in his chest as he smoothed a hand slowly over her hair. "You keep asking me that. Makes a fella think you don't want him around."
She pulled back and looked up at him. "Not at all, in fact I think I could get used to you being around all the time."
"Good," he said leaning down until their faces were mere inches apart. "Because I intend to be." With that he kissed her again, and Tracy kissed him back, getting her wish for a moment as she lost herself in him.
A loud cat call from a hooker waiting in the corner broke the moment and they both pulled back, Tracy blushing slightly.
"Where are my parents? I expected them to be here?" she asked.
"They are trying to get the money to bail you out, I wasn't sure if my plan was gonna work." He reached out and took a piece of her hair between his fingers. "I didn't get to tell you how amazing you looked today. I like your hair this way."
Tracy bit her lip and looked at him with utter adoration. "You do?"
"Yeah, and it feels so soft."
"You thi… wait, what plan?"
At this he looked a little uncomfortable and she watched curiously as he scratched his temple. "Well, I… ah… I went to Sergeant Morris' house you see… I remembered a girl named Morris who had written to me once, she's a big fan of the show and well… I got her to get her dad to drop the charges. Of course I kinda had to promise to sing at her next birthday party…"
"You did all that for me?"
"Sure Doll, I told you. I'm crazy about you."
"Well, I'm kinda crazy about you too," she said grinning and suddenly his face was completely serious.
"You are?" he asked.
"Yeah," she said and then he smiled and kissed her again, this time a bit harder and her heart jumped at the feel of his arms wrapped so tightly around her. There was another chorus of whooping from the people around them.
"Um, what do you say I get you outta here?"
"I say, lets go."
He took her hand and led her to the door opening it for her to let her through. She stopped half way and turned around.
"Wait, just how old is this girl who's birthday party you're singing at?"
Link laughed and bent down to kiss her cheek. "Baby doll, you've got nuthin to worry about."