Wedding Bells Are Ringing - Chapter 3

(Flashback to 1985)

Molly smiled to herself as she watched Jo placed her right ankle on her left knee and stretched her right arm along the back of the booth where she and Blair were sitting. The drive-in movie was packed with both Eastland and Langley students that night since it was going to be demolished the following day. 'They are so cute together', thought Molly as she noticed Blair subconsciously lean to her right so that her shoulder nestled into the crook of Jo's arm.

Molly's revelry, however, was disrupted by the obnoxious couple in the booth next to hers. They were making sarcastic jokes about Jo and Blair, infuriating Molly. The seriously-minded redhead stood up and confronted the rude couple.

"Don't you have anything better to do than to spew your hatred and ignorance?"

The boy in the booth stood up and towered menacingly over the petite girl.

"What are you going to do about it, Red?"

Molly, who took everything literally, considered her options.

"I'm going to become a political activist and work to make this world a better place for my friends. What are you going to do with your life, Jughead?"

The boy clinched his fists at his side and scowled at Molly, who took a step backward. Molly was afraid that she may have gone too far by calling the boy a jughead.

"Jughead huh? Who do you think you are? Archie Andrews? Well, you might be redheaded just like him, but when I get done with you, you will also be red-faced as well! Right, Honey?"

"That's right, Sugar, and I'll shut your mouth as well, you little turnip!"

Just as he was about to approach Molly, he took a step back. Molly felt a protective hand on her shoulder.

"Is this twerp giving you a hard time, Molly?" Molly turned and smiled into the bright green eyes of Jo Polniaczek, before glaring back at the boy who had been taunting her.

The girlfriend was puzzled why her boyfriend backed away. "What are you doing running away from a chick?"

"That's no ordinary chick, that's Jo Polniaczek, the one who kicked Freddie's ass a few months ago when he called her a carpet munching, diesel-dyke!"

"That's right, and if you get anywhere near my friend, or insult me, or her in any way possible, you will end up just like your friend." She scowled as she cracked her right knuckles. Then she asked, "Say, is he starting to eat regular foods again?"

"Let's get the fuck out of here." The boy grunted his dissatisfaction, but he wasn't about to tangle with Jo, so he and his girlfriend left the refreshment bar.

Molly sighed in relief and smiled, "Thanks, Jo."

"Hey, anytime. What was that about, anyway?"

Molly, who assumed that Jo knew that she was gay, answered honestly, "They were making fun of you and Blair . . . as a couple. I got angry and made them stop. It's none of their business who you love."

Jo blushed and stammered.

"B . . . B . . . Blair . . . and me?"

"You don't have to pretend with me, Jo. I know that you and Blair are in love with each other."

"B . . . B . . . Blair . . . and me?"

Molly frowned, wondering why Jo kept repeating herself.

"Why are you so surprised that I figured it out? You were practically hugging each other in the booth over there."

Before Jo could question Molly further, Blair ran up to her roommate and grabbed Jo's arm.

"Come on, Jo! They've fixed the projector, and we'll miss part of the movie if we don't hurry. You know I can't keep up with what's happening if I miss more than a couple of minutes."

Jo allowed herself to be pulled along by Blair, but continued to mutter to herself.

"Blair and me? Blair and me? Blair . . . and me!"

On the other end, Molly was stunned that Jo never knew about it. "Oh my, what did I just do?"

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Later that night, after the police retrieved Mrs. Garrett's stolen car and Natalie, Tootie, Jo, and Blair were in the bedroom they shared over Edna's Edibles, Jo continued to reflect on her conversation with Molly. She looked over at Blair, who was filing her nails, and frowned.

'Nah, it's impossible', reasoned Jo. Moments later, Blair noticed that Jo was staring at her and she smiled over at her roommate, twirling her hair and giggling.

Recognizing the flirtatious gesture, Jo smacked herself in the forehead. Natalie, who was going through her Garbage Pail collection, started laughing. Jo grabbed her younger roommate by the arm and dragged her from the room.

"Why ya laughin'?"

"Why did you smack yourself in the forehead?" Natalie asked, finding it rather amusing.

"None of your business."

Natalie figured it out. "Jo, it's so obvious. You saw the way Blair was flirting with you, and you finally got a clue."

"You knew, too?"

Natalie, who prided herself on being the first to know everything, lifted her eyebrows questioningly.

"Who else knows?"

"Well, Molly said something at the drive-in tonight that got me to thinking about it."

"Damn that girl! I should have known, her body language skills are totally awesome."

"So, you think she's right? You think that Blair and me . . . that we're . . .?"

Natalie shrugged and returned to her bedroom, leaving Jo to figure things out on her own. Natalie almost knocked Blair down as she entered their room.

"Where's Jo? What were you two talking about?"

Natalie started to respond with a funny quip about Blair being nosey, but she took pity on the couple.

"Why don't you go down to the lounge and ask Jo? I think she wants to talk to you about something."

Blair immediately left the room and sought out her best friend. She found Jo sitting on the sofa in Mrs. Garrett's lounge. Jo was deep in thought, so Blair tried to be as quiet as possible when she sat down beside the reflective brunette.

"Is there something wrong, Jo? Are you mad at me again?"

Jo tilted her head and gazed into sincere brown eyes.

"Why would I be angry with you?"

"I don't know. You get angry with me all the time. I never know why."

Jo pursed her lips thoughtfully.

"You get mad at me all the time, too. I don't know why, either. Why do you suppose we're always fighting with one another?"

Blair squirmed, a little uncomfortable with the topic.

"I guess we just make each other mad."

Jo shook her head, unsatisfied with Blair's answer.

"But why do you only get mad at me? Nat and Tootie do some of the same things I do, but you don't get mad at them."

Blair shrugged, "It's different with you. I expect more from you."

"Why?"

Blair stood and began pacing in front of the sofa.

"I don't know why. Why do you have to analyze everything? Can't we just accept how things are without having to know why we do the things we do?"

Jo stood and blocked Blair's path. They stood toe to toe, staring into one another's eyes.

"No, Blair. I can't let it go. I have to know if . . . if . . ."

Jo never had a chance to finish her thought because Blair's lips were suddenly touching her own. It was their first kiss and they owed it all to their observant friends.

As they kissed, Jo slowly wrapped her arms around Blair's waist and drew her closer to her. She wanted more than to just to kiss her; she needed her to be close to her. She needed to feel her softness, she needed to smell that expensive Chanel perfume she was wearing, she needed that thick silk-like hair of Blair's rubbed against her face, she needed all of her, for she hungered for Blair's love and she couldn't let her go.

Blair in return held Jo tight as could. She felt loved within the strong arms of Jo. She felt security when she looked at Jo's green eyes. She felt complete when their lips touched for the first time.

After what seemed like an eternity, they parted from their kiss, yet kept their arms wrapped around each other. Looking deeply into Blair's dark brown eyes, Jo husked, "...if you love me." Part of her hair was over her face.

Blair smiled reassuringly and lightly brushed off Jo's hair off her face. "I think I gave you my answer, just as much as you gave me yours." They both giggled and then they continued their embracing and kissing, savoring their newfound love. All the while, they were unaware of the investigative reporter snooping from the stairs as Natalie had a smile seeing her friends finally recognizing their long-denied love for each other.