Hello everyone! This is just a quick one shot about the day after Sam left. Jackie and Hyde are talking and a million unsaid things still go unsaid...but they both know there is still something there. Will they be able to forgive and forget and be together...or will they just need to be friends for now and stop worrying about the "What ifs". Reviews are greatly appreciated! And don't forget to Review the new chapter of "Crazy Love!"
Hyde was sitting on the Foreman's porch the day after Sam left. A million thoughts were running through his cloudy mind. One thought seemed to run into the other, never forming a coherent sentence. He bent his head down and rubbed his temples with his thumbs to try and stop this headache that wouldn't seem to go away. Just a few feet away, by the basketball hoop, Jackie stood watching her ex-boyfriend struggle to keep his composure. She felt sorry for him, and yet also sorry for herself because she knew he was being tormented because Sam had left him. The woman he chose over her. But she had grown a lot since then…and knew that she could be the bigger person here. So, slowly she walked towards him and stood by the banister.
"Hello Steven." She said softly.
Hyde heard her voice, and his eyes opened just so. But he hadn't lifted his head at all; he was just gaining his composure.
Jackie stared at him confused by his actions. "Um…is Mr. Foreman home?"
Hyde finally lifted his head. "No."
"Oh…alright. Well when he does come home could you tell him that there's a problem with my car. And that I need his help with it." She said starting to walk away.
Hyde stared at her puzzled by his words. "Why would you need help?"
Jackie turned to look at him. "Sorry?"
"I just mean…you're better with cars than anyone I know. It's kinda strange actually…" He paused. "I just mean cuz ya know…you're such a girly girl."
She rolled her eyes. "I'm not that bad. Just because I go shopping doesn't mean I don't like cars and other things too."
He nodded. "I suppose you are right. I'm sorry…"
She smiled. "Yes well…I can't seem to find the problem. So…if you could ask him to help me that would be great. Thank you."
She started to walk away again, and yet part of Hyde seemed to not be able to let her go. "Jackie. Wait." He said standing up.
As she turned around, he was just mere inches from her face. "Oh!" She yelled.
He stepped back slightly. "I'm sorry…"
She laughed. "It's fine…um…" She cleared her throat, feeling strange being so close to him after so long. "What did you want to say?"
"Oh…" He said. "Do you want me to take a look at it?" He asked. "I mean…I may not be as good as Red…but I know a few things."
She looked at him, squinting her eyes slightly. "You don't have anything else to do, do you?" She asked trying not to laugh.
He shrugged. "Not really…Kelso and Fez went off to find chicks."
"And you didn't want to go with them? I hear you are a free man now." She said.
His eyes sought hers for a sign of pain, but he saw none. Not like he used to when the very idea of Sam came up. Now…she seemed stronger. More composed and more brave. He was proud of her for that.
"No…I think I'm gonna just lay off chicks for awhile." He said.
Her eyes widened with surprise. "Lay off chicks?" She thought about it for a moment. "How unlike you…"
"People change." He said and she caught the double meaning of it.
She nodded. "Touché."
"So…do you want my help or not?" He asked.
She smiled. "Well…sure."
He smiled. "Where is it?" He asked looking around.
"It broke down on Black Street." She said.
"Alright. Let me get some stuff, hop in the Camino." He said.
Jackie took a deep breathe. It had been months since she had been in the Camino…and the last time she had been, she and Hyde had made love out by the reservoir. A million images of him doing the same with Sam flashed in her head. Hyde came back and stared at her strangely.
"You ok?" He asked.
She snapped out of her gaze. "Oh…yeah. Sorry…I uh-" She paused. "I didn't get much sleep last night…sorry." She said as she hopped in the Camino.
Hyde saw the back of her head through the window and sighed. "This should be interesting." When he got in he turned to Jackie. "Why didn't you sleep last night? Hot date?" He asked.
She laughed. "God no…I haven't been on a date since…" She trailed off.
Hyde stared at her puzzled. "Since…?"
"Well…I guess since you." She said turning away from him quickly.
"Oh…I guess I figured you'd find some pretty rich guy to take care of you." He said.
"You never knew me that well then…" She said looking out the window.
Those words stung. "Maybe I knew you better than you thought."
She looked back at him and then out the window once more. "Are we leaving or not?"
"You're still bossy I see." He said.
She rolled her eyes. "Well you're the one who offered to help because you had nothing else to do." She said.
He sighed. "Right…let's go."
Driving down the road, neither one of them said anything. They didn't even look at each other. Hyde kept his eyes on the road, his hands gripping the steering wheel tightly. And Jackie stared out the passenger window feeling her heart beat faster and faster in her chest. This had probably been a bad idea. But…if someone didn't help her…she would be walking home in the dark. And that was something she didn't want to do. Hyde pulled up behind Jackie's car and got his supplies; he walked over to her car and popped the hood. Jackie walked up beside him and sat on the curb.
"See anything?" She asked.
He peered into the engine with his flashlight as the sun was setting. "Not yet…"
She sighed. "Oh…"
"Gas is full?" He asked.
"Just filled it yesterday." She said.
"Hm…when was the last time you changed the oil?" He asked.
"Last week. Mr. Foreman did it for me at the shop." She said.
He nodded. "I'll look around some more."
"Ok…" She said, wrapping her jacket around her shoulders.
He peered over at her out of the corner of his eyes and got lost for a moment in how beautiful she truly was. Those piercing eyes could knock any one out, and he had been sure that someone had taken his place as her boyfriend. Jackie caught his gaze.
"What?" She asked touching her face, fearing she had gotten something on it.
He snapped out of his gaze. "Oh…uh…its getting dark…will you hold my glasses for me?" He asked holding them out to her.
She stared at his hand for a moment. "Oh…sure."
She reached out to take the glasses and her hand rubbed up against his. It was the first physical contact they had had in months and the spark that seemed to still be there shocked them both. They jumped back and stared at each other for a moment, holding each others gaze not wanting to turn away. But, eventually Jackie did and wrapped her jacket around her arms once more.
"I won't break them…don't worry." She said.
Hyde nodded. "Cool."
He turned back to the engine and started poking around in it some more. Jackie rubbed the rims of the glasses that he had hidden behind for years. When they we're dating…there we're many times she wanted to rip them off his face when he was being smug. At those times she had wanted to smash them into a million pieces and beg him to tell her something real and stop hiding from the truth. But she had held her tongue…most of the time and she wondered if she hadn't…what would have happened. Would she have had to give him the ultimatum? Or would he have left her way before anything bad happened? Would he have not married Sam? There we're so many "What ifs" and many other questions that lingered between the both. She sighed because she knew that they probably would never be answered. Hyde heard her let out one of her thinking sighs and he looked over at her once more.
"What?" He asked.
She looked up at him. "Huh?"
He smiled. "You sighed. It means your thinking…so what's on your mind."
"Is it a crime to think?" She asked defensively.
He shook his head. "Not at all. Although sometimes those thoughts in your head get you into trouble."
She laughed bitterly. "Like the thought that you would want to be my boyfriend?" She said without thinking.
Hyde dropped his tools. "What?"
Jackie cursed herself for saying such a thing. "Nothing…I didn't mean to say that."
He nodded. "Right."
Part of him wanted to press her on the matter but like everything else in their relationship he kept quite. There was no use in opening old wounds and making them worse when he knew that nothing would ever change between them. They would always be Jackie and Hyde…they would always be in love. And yet…they would never be able to make it work. At least that's what his friends told him. Part of him wanted to believe that they we're all wrong. That Jackie and him could find a way to make their rather complicated relationship work. But…sometimes he felt that it would be better for her if he just left her alone. That was the reason for staying with Sam. He figured Jackie could just move on…and find someone better. He was just starting to wonder if she ever would.
Jackie started to hate the silence. It seemed like there was always silence when they we're together and she needed something to be said. Not about them…just anything. "So…how's the store?" She asked.
He poked around some more. "I don't know…fine I guess."
She nodded. "That's good…"
"Yeah…ya know people like music…so they need records. And I've got records." He said simply.
She laughed. "Guess you're right."
He nodded. "What are you listening to these days?"
She looked up at him. "Well…lately I've been really into the Rolling Stones. I took some of Fez's albums and I've been listening to them." She said.
He was impressed. "Oh…really? No more of that disco crap then?"
She rolled her eyes. "No…I still listen to ABBA…just not as much."
He nodded. "Of course."
"What about you? Still completely obsessed with Zeppelin?" She teased.
He smiled. "Yep. Old habits die hard."
"With you…yes. They do." She said simply.
He looked over at her. "I just know what I want and like."
She nodded. "I know that…"
He sighed and looked at the engine again, desperately searching for the problem. That way, this awkward moment they we're sharking would be over soon. "Right…can we talk about something else?" He asked.
She nodded. "Sure."
It was silent for a few minutes because they we're both waiting for the other one to say something. Any conversation was likely to be awkward and strange…they hadn't talked really in months. Not since Sam had shown up…so what was there left to talk about. Except her?
"So…Donna told me that Sam left yesterday." Jackie said.
Hyde froze. "Oh…yeah. She did."
She cleared her throat. "She said she was married to someone else?" She asked.
"Uh yeah…some guy named Larry." He said.
She nodded. "Oh…that must have been hard for you. I know what its like to loose someone you love to someone else." She said sadly.
Hyde looked over at her; she was playing with her hands, his glasses resting from the pocket of her jacket. The look in her eyes seemed so lonely…so sad and he knew what she was referring to. He had left her for another woman many months ago and hadn't turned back once. It wasn't until now that he had seen how much he had hurt her. But it still amazed him that she thought he loved Sam. But…he realized he never really gave her any doubt that he didn't love Sam. He had always pulled her closer when Jackie walked into the room, daring her to say something. But she never did…even though he hoped she would He had hoped one day she would pound Sam into the cement like she had done to Laurie when she stole Kelso. But…he supposed this was different. Jackie and him we're different. They really had been in love.
He cleared his throat and looked back at the engine, not daring to look at her when he said this. "I never loved her."
Her eyes shot up to the back of his head. "What?"
He cleared his throat again. "I said I never loved her…she just wasn't…I mean…she was fun…but we didn't have much in common. Ya know there wasn't enough there to create a solid relationship…or whatever."
She smiled. "Spoken like a man who knows a thing or two about true love."
He shrugged. "You talked about it all the time…so I suppose I picked up a few things here and there."
She laughed. "Right."
Suddenly Hyde's hand hit something sharp. "Aww fuck." He said pulling his hand back.
"You ok?" She asked. "What is it?"
"Some wires got crossed…they can get sharp." He said shaking his hand gently.
"Are you bleeding?" She asked.
"A little bit…its fine. Just uh…can you hand be that rag?" He asked.
She nodded. "Sure." She handed him the rag and he wiped his hand off, and then wrapped it around his hand to stop the bleeding. "Are you sure you are ok?"
He sighed. "I'm fine. Found the problem so I think I can fix it. It should only take a few moments…you'll be home in no time."
She smiled. "Great. Thanks."
He shrugged. "Whatever"
She smiled at his Zen as he started to fix the problem. "You know…you may not have loved her…but I'm sure it still hurt to watch her walk away."
Hyde looked over at her. "What are you talking about? I thought you hated Sam so why do you care so much?"
She stared at him for a moment not sure what to say, his eyes met hers again. "I never wanted you to get hurt Steven…no matter how I felt about her…or you."
He stared at her for what felt like an eternity. "After everything I put you through…you still don't want me to get hurt? I figured you'd be thrilled that she had left me? Got a little taste of my own medicine or whatever."
She smiled sadly at him and shook her head. "Not at all…"
"Huh…" He looked down at the engine again. "Didn't see that one coming."
"I want you to be happy Steven…I mean I suppose you wouldn't think that, since I've barley talked to you in months." She said.
"Yeah…life's been a lot quieter without you in it." He joked.
She smiled sheepishly. "Whatever…I just…I guess I didn't want to you because it was just easier to stay as far away from you as I could. I did miss you…" She said softly. "Sometimes I still do…but I accept the fact that I couldn't make you happy…so I did want you to find someone who did. I guess it wasn't Sam either though…"
He stared at her in amazement. "Just because I said my life was quieter…it doesn't mean it was better…" He said softly.
Their words we're reigniting a flame that hadn't been put out…just dimmed momentarily. But Jackie knew better than to allow him to fully ignite it once more. So when he leaned in a little bit she turned away and stepped up onto the sidewalk.
"Right…well I do suppose I can be complicated at times." She said feeling her cheeks warm.
He felt the tingle in his stomach he felt so many times that he had wanted to kiss her in years past. He shook his head and pushed the thought aside. "I suppose so."
"Um…so what are you going to do now that she's…" He started.
"Gone?" He asked looking back over at her.
She swallowed the lump her throat. "Yeah…"
He shrugged. "Dunno…work I guess. I think I'm gonna try to find an apartment to live in. I guess it's about time I move out of the Foreman's basement."
She smiled. "I guess so. Although I suppose it will break Mrs. Foreman's heart."
He laughed. "Yeah but Red will be happy to have his house back."
She smiled. "He'll never have the house back Steven…we'll always be there."
He laughed again. "Guess you're right." He moved some things around once more and pulled back. "I think I got it…try starting the engine now."
Jackie walked over to the driver's side and slipped inside of it. She raised her key to the ignition and turned the key. The sound of the engine echoed through the abandoned street and Hyde smiled in satisfaction. Jackie smiled as well and got of the car.
"Looks like you fixed it." She said.
He smiled. "Looks like I did."
"Thank you." She said reaching for her purse.
"You're welcome." He stared at her for a moment. "What are you doing?"
She looked up at him. "Well I have to repay you somehow." She said reaching for her wallet.
Hyde shook his head adamantly. "Oh…no. Its cool don't worry about it."
Jackie sighed. "Steven please…let me pay you."
Hyde smiled. "Jackie…after everything I put you through the last couple of months…heck the last couple of years…I think that the least I can do is fix your car." He said honestly.
She smiled. "Well…if you insist."
He smiled. "I do."
Jackie's heart swelled just slightly at those two words. To most people they we're just two words that didn't mean much. But to Jackie the we're the two words she had never gotten Hyde to say no matter how much she showed she loved him. Instead he had chosen to say them to a stranger. Even though their wedding wasn't real…it didn't mean it didn't hurt her anymore than it would if it was real. It still signified what she had lost…sometimes she thought it signified something that was never really hers, or so she thought. His heart.
He saw her confused look. "You ok?"
She snapped out of her gaze once more. "Oh yeah…sorry…still tired I guess."
He nodded. "Well then I guess you want to get home…" He said staring at her. "Ya know…so you can get some sleep."
She smiled at him. "I guess so…"
She was about to get into the car when his words stopped her. "So this wasn't so bad…"
She looked back over at him, puzzled by what he meant. "What?"
He smiled at her innocence. "I just meant…this wasn't so bad. Ya know…hanging out or whatever…talking to you. It was kind of…" He paused to try and find the right words. "Nice I guess…" There probably we're many other words he could have used…but after all he was Steven Hyde…not Shakespeare.
She smiled. "Oh…right. Yeah…I guess it wasn't so bad."
He nodded. "Ya know…cuz I know you've been ignoring me…"
"I haven't been ignoring you." She said quickly.
"You haven't? Then why did you hardly ever come by the basement to hang out?" He asked.
She looked down. "I was avoiding her."
He nodded. "Same difference…"
She laughed. "I guess so. But I guess that's not really a problem now."
He cocked his head slightly. "You mean because she's gone?"
She nodded slightly. "Yeah…and because…we've both moved on. Neither of us are harboring old feelings anymore right?"
Her words cut through him like a knife. The thought of her not loving him anymore hurt more than he ever thought possible Though he knew he didn't deserve her love…he still wished she was his.
He nodded. "Right."
She smiled. "Well then I guess I'll see you around then?"
He nodded. "I guess so."
She smiled and got in her car and shut the door. Hyde shut the hood and was about to walk to his car when he heard her call out his name through her window. She leaned out just slightly and held out his glasses to him.
"I almost forgot to give these back to you." She said.
He smiled. "I forgot about them too."
She smiled. "Maybe you don't need them anymore." She said.
He smiled down at her. "Maybe I need them more than ever."
She understood the meaning of his words but tried to ignore them. "Well…I should go."
He smiled. "See you."
She smiled once more. "Ya know Steven…I still want you to be happy. I hope you do find someone who will do…whatever it was that I couldn't."
He stared at her for a moment. "You never did anything wrong Jacks…I just wasn't man enough to return the love you gave me."
She nodded. "Someday you will be…for someone else."
His heart hurt again and he didn't try and shake it off this time. "Maybe…"
She smiled. "Anyway…see you later Steven."
He smiled as she rolled her window up. "Right…see you Jackie."
As Jackie's car drove away into the cold, dark night a million thoughts rang through Hyde's mind again, just as they had done on the porch. He just wished he could share them with the girl who had just gone away from him…again. His thoughts never we're about Sam…they we're always about her. But there was no sense in wondering about the "What ifs"…because at the end of the day they can't be changed. All one can do is focus on the future…and to make sure there wouldn't be anymore "What ifs". He just hoped that someday…he could love her back the way she deserved. And that she would love him fully once again. But for now…he just had to be her friend…He stored this moment into his memories and started his own car. Just then on the radio…Tiny Dancer began to play and he smiled…he truly smiled for the first time since Chicago. Because for the first time sine then…he felt hope one again.
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