So a new story here, it's pretty random really and I have no idea where I got the plot from but hey, my imagination is running wild. Lorelai gets swine flu and there's only one person to take care of her...JAVAJUNKIE :D Set in season 1 after the double date episode where he nearly asked her out, if wasn't for that damn Mrs Kim interrupting them please enjoy!
Lorelai trudged into the diner after a long day at the inn. She'd been answering calls, dealing with snotty customers and she'd done it all with only one cup of coffee in her system. She needed her fix. She dumped her bag on the stool next to hers and dropped onto it, resting her elbows on the counter, her hands cradling her chin.
"You look happy," Luke commented.
"Gee thanks," she murmured before starting to cough violently, gaining some glances from other customers.
"I think that's unsanitary," grumbled Luke.
"I think there's nothing you can do about it," she retorted.
"You okay?" he asked as she broke out into another coughing fit.
"I'm fine, I just need coffee," she replied grouchily.
"You're sick," he stated.
"No I'm not, I'm perfectly healthy. Now give me coffee," she demanded.
"You shouldn't have coffee if you're sick."
"I'm not sick!"
"Yeah you've got a cold or something," he said. "Maybe it's that flu that's going round you know, err...what's it called?"
"I do not have swine flu," she snapped. "I coughed twice, there's no need to put me on bed rest for a week." She looked at the counter. "Why isn't there a cup of coffee in front of me right now?"
"Cause you're sick and you're not getting any coffee. Now I suggest you go home before you infect my customers."
"But Luuuuke, I need coffee," she fake-sobbed.
"No, go home and rest," he ordered. She stared into his blue eyes, trying to break him but he stood his ground. He pointed in the direction of her house and she sighed in defeat.
"Okay I'll go home but I'm not going to bed. I'm gonna sit on the couch and watch movies with Rory all night."
"Stay away from Rory," he warned.
"Err...newsflash, she's my kid and you can't tell me to stay away from her."
"If you do have this flu, you'll give it to Rory. I'm sure you don't want Rory to get swine flu do you?" he asked mockingly. She scowled at him.
"Fine, I will get Rory to sleep at Lane's tonight."
"Good girl." He was gonna pat her head but every time he went near her was awkward for him, never mind touching her, that was taking it too far.
"So I'm supposed to sit at home by myself all week? No one to talk to, no one to look after me," she listed.
"If you really are sick, I'll make sure you're well looked after. I'll pick up your medication or whatever and bring food round for you."
"You would do that for me?" she asked, jokingly putting a hand to her heart, pretending to be touched. Luke shrugged again and began to wipe down the counter. "So I guess I should be going," she sighed.
"Yup, here." He put a to go cup in front of her and her eyes lit up. That was until she took a sip and found it was peppermint tea.
"Eww gross," she complained.
"It'll make you feel better," he assured. "The peppermint settles your stomach."
"I want coffee," she said, sounding like a spoiled child who didn't get what they want.
"Sorry, no can do." She narrowed her eyes at him, coughed a few times, then dragged herself out of the diner and got in her jeep to drive home. Rory was sitting on the couch waiting for her when she got in.
"Hey, you're back later than usual," she said from her position on the uncomfortable upholstery.
"I stopped at Luke's," she informed.
"Ooh coffee, did you get me some?" she asked.
"Oh no, it isn't coffee. It's, are you ready for it?"
"It's peppermint tea," she said in exasperation.
"Whoa, what is wrong with you?"
"No it's not what's wrong with me, it's what's wrong with Luke. He thinks I'm sick cause I coughed a couple of times and now he refuses to give me coffee," she sulked.
"Now you mention it, you do look a little flushed. Do you feel warm?" she asked in concern.
"A little but you've got the thermostat on right?"
"No," she replied. "It's quite chilly in here actually."
"Luke thinks I have swine flu," she mumbled.
"What? Mom that's really contagious," Rory said worriedly.
"I know but I don't think I actually have it."
"You never know, you could have picked it up at the inn or at your business class."
"Yeah well I don't have it."
"Hey I know you'll probably wanna watch movies and stuff tonight but I think I'm gonna stay at Lane's," she said, making her way to her room.
"But...damn it, not you too."
"Mom I don't wanna get the flu, I have school and stuff to think about."
"I know, I don't want you to get the flu either and you won't because I don't have it."
"Well I'll stay at Lane's tonight anyway. You get some rest and see how you're feeling in the morning."
"And if you have achey muscles, nausea or any other symptoms, call that helpline thingy to check if you have it."
"Okay," she grumbled. Rory zipped her backpack up and walked into the foyer.
"Feel better soon okay?"
"Yes," Lorelai replied.
"Get some rest," she ordered.
"Yes," she repeated.
"And eat something."
"Okay you're going now." Lorelai pushed her daughter out of the front door and watched her walk across the lawn and round the corner out of sight. When she thought about it, she did feel off. She hadn't really felt like eating much at all that day, something very unusual for Lorelai, and she felt sluggish, like she just wanted to collapse and not move anywhere. She padded upstairs and changed into a tank top and shorts, she was burning up. She pulled back her duvet and climbed under the sheets, falling back into her pillow and letting out a long sigh. Luke was right, she was sick. Why else would Lorelai Gilmore be in bed at seven thirty on a Thursday night?
The next morning, Lorelai woke early, way too early for her liking. She sat up, trying to figure out what had woken her at such an ungodly hour when she felt something twist in her stomach. She put her hand to her belly while the other went to her mouth, trying to wish away the nauseasness she was feeling at the moment but it was there to stay. She slowly pushed back the sheets and rushed to the bathroom where she proceeded to throw up for the next twenty minutes.
After her intense visit with the toilet, Lorelai crawled back into her bedroom and pulled herself into bed. She felt awful, it was the worst feeling she'd had in her life. She propped herself up with a few pillows to prevent her nausea from returning then closed her eyes, willing sleep to take her over. It took an hour and a half but she finally fell asleep, a light, uncomfortable slumber.
Luke padded up the porch steps to Lorelai's house. He had been worrying about her all night as he had heard horror stories about the disease. At one point, about two fifteen that morning, he had the urge to visit her, just to make sure she was doing okay. But he resisted that urge and instead lay in silence, just staring at the ceiling for the next two or three hours till he had to be awake.
Now it was finally a reasonable hour and he had come to check up on her. He tried the door handle and found it unlocked, not that he was surprised. He didn't want to startle her so he called her name but when she didn't answer, he panicked a little inside. He took the steps two at a time and cautiously stepped towards her bedroom. He had never been in Lorelai Gilmore's bedroom before and to be honest, it was his dream come true.
He poked his head round the door and saw her sleeping soundly, her Hello Kitty sheets wrapped around her. He cautiously stepped closer to the bed and stopped to examine her. She looked beautiful when she slept, even when she was sick. He carefully tucked the blankets more tightly around her arms when he saw she had goosebumps and she began to stir a little.
"Who's there?" she mumbled.
"Shh it's just me, Luke," he whispered, smoothing her hair away from her face.
"Luke..." she said, her eyes still closed as she was still half asleep. "You shouldn't be here, I gots the pig flu," she sighed.
"You know swine flu has nothing to do with pigs?" he asked.
"Huh who really cares when you feel this terrible?"
"Want me to get you something?"
"Go," she said while clearing her throat.
"If you stay here you'll catch it too and I wouldn't inflict this feeling on anyone so please, go home."
"I'm not leaving you alone like this, you can hardly open your eyes, never mind move."
"But you'll be contaminated too," she protested.
"I had the vaccination," he shrugged. "Now what do you need?" Lorelai smiled in her half slumber.
"Sleep," she mumbled.
"Okay, get some rest, I'll be here." He heard her breathing even out and debated whether to kiss her cheek or not. He decided against it; he was just her friend, not her boyfriend, no matter how hard he wished for it. Plus he wasn't about to take advantage of her while she was sick, he wasn't that guy. He made sure she was tucked nice and warm in bed then crept downstairs to make her some soup. She had to eat something.
Just as he was placing the bowl of soup on a tray, he heard the front door open and Rory's voice could be heard.
"Mom?" she called as she walked further into the house.
"Shh," said Luke, appearing in front of her. "She's asleep."
"What are you doing here?" she asked curiously.
"Well I know your mom's sick so I came to see if she needed anything," he shrugged, seeming nervous somehow.
"Does she actually have swine flu?" she asked, feeling bad for her mother.
"I think so. She was asleep when I came in earlier and she isn't feeling too great," he replied.
"You know it's contagious right? If you're here, you'll probably catch it too," she warned.
"Had the vaccination. She needs someone to take care of her, she can hardly move." Rory eyed him knowingly. It was obvious that Luke had a thing for Lorelai but it was times like these, when he was really there for her and her mom, that she realised he would do anything for her, even if his own life was put at risk.
"Okay well I'm just gonna grab some clothes and books then I'll be out of your hair." She made her way to her room and began collecting some stuff together.
"Rory have you eaten?" he asked from his place in the kitchen.
"No I'm gonna grab something on the way to school," she replied as she walked into the kitchen with a bag slung over her shoulder.
"How much time you got?"
"About fifteen minutes," she said, glancing at her watch.
"I'll make you some pancakes, you can take them with you." Rory smiled.
"Really? And coffee too?" she asked causing Luke to roll his eyes.
"Yes I'll make you some coffee."
"Thanks Luke, you're the best." She grinned then went into her room to change into her school uniform. When she emerged, there were some pancakes wrapped in napkin, along with a a thermos filled with coffee. "Wow thanks," she said gratefully, taking a sip from the coffee.
"You're welcome, who else is gonna keep you fed?"
"Good point." They heard violent coughing coming from the first floor so Luke excused himself.
"You get off to school, I'll take care of her," he promised.
"Thanks Luke, tell mom I love her and I'm thinking of her," she said to his retreating form.
"I will." Rory grinned as she watched him quickly climb the stairs, taking two at a time. He was a truly genuine guy, she thought.
"Hey you okay?" Luke asked as he entered her bedroom cautiously. She had taken to sneezing every few seconds now, the coughing having subsided. She opened her mouth to speak but another sneeze escaped from within her, preventing her from doing so. Instead she just nodded. "You don't seem it, are you hungry?" he asked.
"No," she choked out.
"You have to eat something Lorelai, I made soup." Lorelai shook her head quickly in protest.
"No thanks," she mumbled, collapsing back into her pillow with a loud sigh. Luke frowned at her refusal to eat, there was definitely something wrong with her.
"Can I get you anything to drink?"
"That pepperminty stuff you gave me would be good," she said with a half smile at his concern. "Please?" she added. Luke was genuinely surprised; Lorelai Gilmore just asked him to make her peppermint tea, he thought he'd never see the day.
"Coming right up. I'll have to go to Doose's but I won't be gone long," he promised. "Is there anything else you need while I'm there?" Lorelai didn't answer. Instead she jolted up in bed, her hand flying up to cover her mouth as she felt the overwhelming urge to vomit. "What's wrong?" he asked.
"I...I don't feel so good," she mumbled, feeling it rising inside of her.
"Can you move?" he asked frantically, wanting to prevent having to clean anything up. She shook her head quickly, leaving Luke at a loss. "Uh..."
"Oh god," she muttered as it almost reached her throat.
"It's okay," he soothed. He thought fast and gathered her in his arms, rapidly heading for the bathroom. He settled her down in front of the toilet and proceeded to hold her hair back as she emptied the contents of her stomach, not that there was much in there seeing as she'd hardly eaten in the last day or so. Luke unconsciously rubbed her back as she choked and gasped for air through it all. Once she thought it was over, she fell back into Luke, her body shaking with sobs.
"I'm such a mess," she cried, covering her face with her hands.
"Shh no you're not," he whispered, close to her ear.
"You're just saying that to make me feel better," she sniffled.
"Lorelai you're not a mess, you're beautiful," he told her softly. Her head turned to look at him briefly before quickly breaking her stare.
"Thank you," she mumbled.
"Anytime," he replied, gently stroking her hair and twisting her locks around his fingers. "Ready to go back to bed?" he asked.
"Dirty," she said with a tired smile. Luke rolled his eyes overdramatically.
"Some things never change," he said while shaking his head. "Come on." He scooped her up in his arms and took her back to her bedroom. He placed her carefully on the bed and tucked the covers around her, making sure she was comfortable. Lorelai watched him carefully as he completed the task then smiled up at him shyly.
"Why are you doing this for me?" she asked curiously. She didn't know anyone that would be willing to risk catching swine flu just to make sure their friend was comfortable enough. Even Rory had disappeared, not that she was complaining. She'd never forgive herself if she gave her sixteen year old swine flu. She heard Luke exhale before revealing his answer.
"Because I care about you," he replied, feeling a little uneasy admitting that to her. He hoped she didn't take it the wrong way, not that it would be wrong exactly, after all he did have feelings for her. He just didn't want to admit them to her just yet, or ever for that matter.
"Okay," she replied sleepily. She tried to act nonchalant but inside she was questioning his comment. Did he mean he cared for her as a friend or something more? There had been that moment between them just a couple of nights ago where she swore he was gonna ask her out. Curse Mrs Kim and her overprotective ways for interrupting them. If she hadn't have walked into the diner at that moment, maybe her and Luke would be dating right now. Well not RIGHT now, she did have swine flu after all.
"You gonna go back to sleep?" he asked quietly.
"Yeah, might have some soup when I wake up," she gave a small smile.
"Good," he whispered. "I'll make sure to warm some up for you."
"Thanks Luke," she said gratefully. "You're being really good to me."
"That's what friends are for," he shrugged. He leaned down and left a feather-light kiss on her forehead before drawing back to see her eyes were closed. He was pretty sure she was sleeping. She wasn't though, she'd just closed her eyes to escape the possible awkwardness of his actions. The term 'friends' was starting to seem like an understatement.
Luke backed towards the chair by her closet and dropped onto it quietly. He hated seeing her like this, in so much pain and the fact that he couldn't stop it or do anything to make her feel better was eating at him. He was Mr Fix-it. He would fix her porch rail, her leaky sink and her clogged garbage disposal, hell sometimes he could even fix her broken heart. But this was out of his hands, he was useless and he hated that. He watched her sleep for some time. He wasn't sure how long he sat there but became aware of it when she drifted into consciousness again.
"Feeling a little better?" he asked as he moved over to the bed and perched on the edge.
"Not really," she replied as she tried to sit up. Luke saw her struggle and was quick to assist. He propped up a few pillows and carefully lowered her body to them, grasping her shoulders to support her.
"A little, thank you."
"You're welcome." They stared at each other awkwardly for a few moments before Lorelai cleared her throat.
"I'm starved," she complained after hearing her stomach growl at her.
"Want that soup now?"
"Mmm yes please," she hummed greedily. "A little bread to dunk in it too."
"Yes ma'am. Would you like some water to go with that?"
"Yeah that'd be good, thanks Burger Boy." Luke nodded briefly before leaving the room. Lorelai sat up in bed, hardly moving because her body was preventing her from doing so. She felt so helpless and dependant. She had never been like this. She was independant and that is how she liked things to be. She didn't need anyone else to help her live her life, as long as she had Rory, her life was perfect. She did admit though, having a man care for her so much felt nice, especially since it was Luke.
Luke returned to her room with the tray he had set up earlier, the warmed up soup sitting in a bowl, ready to be eaten. He found her in the exact same position, staring at the wall ahead of her. She looked like she was tracing the pattern of the wallpaper with her eyes, following it's every contour until she reached the end. She was snapped out of her daydream by the sound of Luke clearing his throat.
"This looks good," she complimented as she peered into the bowl and licked her lips. "What soup is it?"
"Chicken noodle," he replied.
"Yummy, thank you," she smiled appreciatively as he set the tray down in her lap. She ate a few spoonfuls before looking up at him curiously. "So don't you have to be at the diner?" she asked. Luke shrugged.
"Caesar's got it covered," he replied.
"Are you sure?" she asked, wondering what had happened to the Luke she knew. That Luke wouldn't leave the diner for so long just to take care of her, sure he'd send her food over and check in on her on his breaks, but never while he was supposed to be on shift.
"Positive," he said surely. "Now eat, you need to keep your strength up." Lorelai smiled weakly before spooning some more soup into her mouth. She drained her bowl and took a few sips of water before smiling gratefully at Luke.
"That was delicious, thank you."
"Your welcome, need anything else?"
"Hmm coffee," she mumbled dreamily.
"No way," he said immediately.
"But I'm dying for some, please it'll make me feel better, please, pleaaase?"
"No," he said sternly. "It'll make you feel worse, you're best sticking to water and maybe orange juice."
"Pleaaase?" she tried again, pouting for added effect.
"No, stop bugging me about it," he warned. "You're not getting any coffee."
"So unfair," she sulked.
"You'd better get used to it, you're not having a drop of coffee till this virus is out of your system. You're looking at a week, week and a half maybe."
"Why are you doing this to me?"
"Because I care about you," he replied, his voice softening significantly. "I'm just trying to make you feel better."
"Dirty," she chuckled. "Oh god, I feel nauseaus again. How long does this go on for? It's like being pregnant, but about ten times worse."
"Maybe if you stop talking for a few moments, you might feel better," he suggested. She smirked at him before rubbing her stomach soothingly.
"I think I'm gonna throw up again," she mumbled, her heart beginning to beat faster.
"Uh...we'd better get you into the bathroom," he said, more to himself than to her. He pulled back her duvet, but she put her hand on his wrist, stopping him from pulling it any further.
"I can't make it to the bathroom," she managed to choke out before her stomach emptied all over her duvet cover. Luke acted fast and brought the small bin she kept in her bedroom over, shoving it into her lap. Once she had stopped vomiting, she smiled up at Luke weakly. "Sorry you have to see this," she said sincerely.
"Don't worry about it, you can't help it," he shrugged off.
"But surely it's grossing you out."
"Got a strong stomach," he replied, patting his hard, toned belly proudly. Lorelai couldn't help but let her eyes linger over that flannel covered area for a moment, marvelling at how good it looked, even covered by the material, she could see that his healthy eating habits had paid off. Then she pulled herself away from those thoughts. This was Luke, her friend Luke, she couldn't be thinking about how gorgeous he looked. "I'm gonna change your duvet," he said as he began to strip it off the bed.
"Okay, it does smell a bit doesn't it?" she stated, the smell was actually making her feel nauseaus again but she didn't tell Luke this time.
"Yeah, I'll get it in the machine and put a little extra powder in," he chuckled. "Will you be okay up here by yourself?"
"Yeah I'll be fine, go do what you have to do." She watched him scoop the linen up, careful to avoid the icky part, then walked towards the door. "Thanks Luke," she called after him.
"No problem," he replied. He was actually glad he could spend time alone with her, even if he did have to watch her throw up and wash her sheets afterwards. He stuffed the soilet duvet cover in the washing machine and switched it on before searching the various closets and storage spaces in the Crap Shack for a new set. He eventually found a Hello Kitty cover and took it upstairs to re-make her bed.
But when he got there, she was fast asleep, laid in the weirdest sleeping position he had ever seen. It was kinda sexy actually, and he had to try with all his might not to let his body react. He quickly slipped the duvet inside the cover, and laid it over his sick friend to keep her warm. She shifted positions slightly, but didn't wake up, so Luke leaned down and left a gentle kiss on her cheek.
"Luke," she mumbled in a sleep-induced haze. She hadn't opened her eyes so he wasn't sure if she was aware she was speaking or not.
"What?" he replied cautiously, wondering what she was gonna say.
"You're a really great guy, I'm lucky to have you," she said before going completely silent again. Luke felt himself smiling, blushing at the same time. Maybe the week ahead would hold great things for the two of them, and their future. He could only hope.
The rating may go up on this, I'm not sure yet...probably to T but depending on what I feel like when I write the next chapter, it might be M. But we'll just have to wait and see. This is going to be a two shot, so please review this one and you'll get to see what's in store for the rest of their week while Lorelai's sick. :D hope you like the idea too, I don't think it's been done before.