Author's Note: I do not own That 70's show in any form. I wrote this because I simply hated how most of Season Eight turned out. If I had my way things would have definitely turned out differently.
Micheal Kelso opened the back door of the Foreman's basement wearing a cocky grin. Deep down he knew he was the idiot of the group, which is why he enjoyed the extremely rare times that he knew something none of the others did. He was basking in the moment as he paced around the group deciding which friend to tell the juicy gossip to first. Donna glanced up at him with a nervous grin, clearly trying to decide whether he was being pervy or just plain creepy. "So, Fez," Kelso began taking a deep sigh and giving Hyde a knowing and gleeful grin. "There's a show coming on that I want to watch with you," Kelso said wiggling his eyebrows at the foreign guy in what was clearly some sort of code.
"Watch out, Fez. Whatever you do don't drop the soap man," Hyde said turning his attention back to the TV. "Why the hell are you looking at me like that man?!" Hyde said both exasperated and creeped out by Kelso's odd behavior.
"Oh, you just wait and see," Kelso assured him with a wink. Donna hide a grin behind her hand, knowing that Hyde would not appreciate the humor of this strange moment.
"Perhaps, you are the one that should not drop the soap; Hyde," Fez suggested in a helpful tone. "Kelso is clearly on the prowl," he added seriously eating his candy. Donna tried and failed to hold back a giggle and earned a dirty look from Hyde for her efforts.
"Hyde, come on that one was funny," Donna protested before turning her attention back to the TV and trying her hardest to ignore the people around her. She tried to hide her grin by pretending to bite her nails and was relieved when Samantha came bursting into the basement, counting her tips.
"I am so not gay! I don't find Hyde sexy at all.....I mean in a way he's man pretty with a cute butt but there's no way that's gonna make me start batting for my own team, man" Kelso protested pointing at Fez. Samantha stopped in her tracks and cocked her blond head to the side, giving her husband a quizzical look.
"Aside from how disturbed I am that you not only have looked at my butt, but that you think its cute. I am curious. What the hell do you want, Kelso?!" Hyde said springing up from his chair and putting one arm around an oblivious Samantha. Strangely enough, it was moments like this that made him think of Jackie. She would know the perfect thing to say to make this already tense situation both more tense and hilarious for the next few months at least. As it was, Samantha merely wrapped herself around him and gazed up at him with a dull, glazed expression that had nothing to do with drugs and everything to do with being a dimwit. God, he was starting to miss Jackie even more. Jackie might have been shallow and materialistic but she definitely had brains. That trait alone was something he was beginning to appreciate more and more. Having or rather trying to have a conversation with Samantha was like trying to have a conversation with an oversexed two year old. It got old fast. He hadn't seen or heard from Jackie in months and although he wouldn't admit it to anyone, he still thought about her every day and dreamed about her every night.
"I want Fez to come upstairs and watch a show with me," Kelso said wiggling his eyebrows at Fez and looking impatient.
"Fez, please just go with Kelso. If you don't he's just going to keep being creepy," Donna said with a shiver.
"Fine!" Fez said angrily, hopping up from his chair. "But no one had better touch my candy!" He declared following an eager Kelso upstairs.
"What's with Fez and Kelso?" Hyde asked Donna a couple days later. Donna shrugged looking as clueless as he felt. The past two days had consisted of Kelso and Fez running upstairs and coming back down five minutes later giggling like school girls. It had taken some wheedling and threats of violence to get them to admit that they were watching the weather report. When Donna and Hyde both gave them blank, disbelieving stares, Kelso and Fez had dissolved into hysterical laughter. "If we'd just had a circle, I could see how the weather report could be funny. Everything's funnier after a circle. This is just weird," Hyde complained.
"Lets watch it," Donna said checking the time on her watch. "I don't know about you but I want to be in on the joke too," she added turning to the news. " The weather report should be on after this," Donna said hurrying back to her seat.
"Whoa, what are you guys doing?" Kelso said as he and Fez hurried downstairs, shooting each other looks of glee.
"I think they are going to be watching the weather report," Fez said clapping and sitting very close to Donna. "I've dreamed of this moment," Fez whispered staring at Donna intently. "I don't want to miss a thing," he said so solemnly that Hyde started to laugh at Donna's bewildered expression until he noticed both Kelso's proximity to him and the excited leer on his face.
"Me too," Kelso said jumping up and down in place with excitement. Donna gave Hyde a look as if to say 'Its not funny when they're staring at you is it?'
"What's with the weather report? Why is this so exciting?" Hyde demanded in both confusion and worry. Kelso and Fez never took their eyes off of Donna and Hyde for a moment. They began giggling uncontrollably when Jackie's face appeared on the screen, informing everyone about the weeks coming weather. Hyde didn't see what was so funny but he was entranced at the sight of Jackie on the screen. She looked beautiful but also cold, with a heavy heart he wondered if he had put that cold distant look into her eyes. He was only dimly aware of Kelso and Fez bouncing up and down in anticipation.
"Here it comes," Kelso said leaning so close to Hyde that he could feel his breath on his cheek. Hyde leaned back in his chair to get away from Kelso but was unsuccessful. The camera began to zoom out and the background behind Jackie changed from a local map to a national one.
"What the Hell?!" Donna screeched in shock, jumping to her feet. Her eyes were wide as she turned to Hyde to gauge his reaction. Hyde could only stare open mouthed at the woman on the screen. It looked like he was going to have to go to Chicago again. He needed to talk to a very pregnant Jackie Burkhart.
"Burn!" Kelso shouted triumphantly in his ear. "Oww my eye!" Kelso said falling to the floor after Hyde punched him.
"Ms. Burkhart, there's a gentleman who's here to see you. He says he knows you," said Franny, popping her head into Jackie's dressing room hesitantly. Jackie frowned slightly wondering who it could be and why they'd show up at her work place. Franny gave her a small salute and hurried off to assist the other stage hands while Jackie grabbed her coat and purse and waddled towards the main lobby. Being so pregnant was beginning to lose some of its charms, Jackie thought as the elevator stopped on the main floor. Not only did she have to worry about well meaning tummy touchers she also had been forced into a pregnant waddle instead of her usual bouncy walk.
"What are you doing here?" Jackie demanded fastening her coat and looking at Steven Hyde with a mixture of shock and anger. Hyde gave her a cool look before gesturing to the security guard behind the main desk. As much as she hated to admit it, she didn't want to have this fight in front of her co-workers or anyone else for that matter. In her mind she calculated the quickest way to get rid of Steven Hyde and didn't think it would be too hard. She'd let him bitch and moan and then she'd lie and say the kid wasn't his. He would then call her a few names and go away because if her experience had taught her anything it was that Steven Hyde was good at walking away no, he was good at running away from anything either emotional or commitment related. He'd always had trust issues, it should be easy to fool him; she silently reasoned. She felt only a slight twinge of guilt at her impromptu plan but quickly quashed it with feelings of anger and betrayal. He'd run off and married a stripper whore, breaking her heart. He didn't deserve to know their child, she decided heading outside as quickly as she could. "No," she said as Hyde was about to open a door for her. His eyebrows shot up in surprise at her response. She used to complain endlessly about guys who didn't open doors up for women and now she'd just objected to him doing just that. She was not going to let Steven Hyde do one nice thing for her. One nice thing and the wall she'd built around her shattered heart would break; she was sure of it. It was better to get this over with as soon as possible, she thought gritting her teeth against a cool breeze. She stepped to the side of the building and motioned to Hyde to join her. "The baby's not yours so you came all this way for nothing," Jackie lied shivering slightly from the cold. Hurry up Steven, bail she thought. Its freezing out here her mind added.
"Jackie, I can do math," Hyde said frowning at her. "Its freezing out here. Shouldn't we talk inside a building somewhere? How far is your apartment?" he asked frowning more when he saw her shudder once more with cold.
"Well, factor this in. I was cheating on you ok? You don't belong in my life anymore and your not welcome in it. Go home to your wife, Steven," Jackie said trying to muster as much spite as she could. Go home to your wife that isn't me, Jackie thought painfully. "Aw come on, Steven. You didn't think you were the only one did you?" Jackie said trying to imitate the cruel tone she'd heard Pam Macy use with guys before. She hated saying these things to him but she didn't see any other way. She'd learned from bitter experience that Hyde would always be looking for an out. She thought she might as well give him one and get the waiting over with. She needed to be rid of him before she showed him her true feelings, she couldn't allow herself to count on him again for anything. She couldn't allow herself to soften towards him in anyway or she wouldn't be able to do this. It was as much for his own good as it was for hers and the baby's she rationalized silently. For all intents and purposes he was a teenager, or at least he acted like one. There was no way he could take responsibility for them. Even if he wanted to, he couldn't. Steven Hyde was already married and to someone besides the mother of his child. Hyde stood there looking at Jackie and for once was completely speechless. "Have a nice drive home, Steven," Jackie said feigning indifference and hurrying to the parking lot. The moment she turned around she was grateful that he couldn't see the tears streaming down her face.