An Original Fanfic by: LiSa
Rachel finished typing up the weekly invoices and looked up at the clock on the wall. It would be another few minutes before Liana and Ross arrived to meet her. Rachel smiled as she thought of Liana, the pair of them had become fast friends over the past three months since Monica's wedding, and Rachel could still remember the day almost six months ago when Ross had introduced Rachel and to Liana and then ended up stepping aside for Chandler. The thought of Ross warmed her heart, and she pulled out her mirror and fixed her hair and make-up. She felt a sudden pang in her heart as she remembers that she and Ross weren't together. She forgot at times, and more often now a days. They'd both grown so much over the past year, but would she be able to trust him again with her heart?
Joey nudged Chandler as they waited for the sign to change so that they could cross the road. Chandler looked at him and Joey motioned for Chandler to look behind. Chandler glanced behind and saw what Joey meant. The girl that they had walked past almost fifteen minutes ago was following them.
"She's Gorgeous" Joey whispered to Chandler.
"Yeh, but remember what happened last time you dated a stalker?" Chandler hissed at him.
"Yeh she's still real hot" Joey concluded
"Well if you want to go out with her then go over and talk to her," Chandler said to Joey as they started to cross the road.
"If she's been following you for the past while then I'd think she'd like you to make a move now" Chandler said, as they turned a corner and walked away. Then he stopped and looked behind and she was there just standing around, not looking at them.
"I'm going up to her wait here" Joey said, and left Chandler. Chandler watched as Joey went up to the girl and just started a conversation out of thin air. He noticed Joey getting ready to go in for the kill, then he watched as Joey was rebuffed. Joey talked to the girl for a few moments, and then came back to Chandler.
"What happened?" Chandler asked
"She doesn't want to go out with me," Joey said
"Then she's hasn't been following you?" Chandler asked and Joey shook his head.
"No not me, she's been following you?" Joey explained "And she wants to go with you"
"I hope you told her I have a girlfriend," Chandler said and Joey shrugged.
"I forgot to mention it" Joey said, "here you tell her" Joey waved to the girl and she smiled and came forward.
"Hi!" she exclaimed "I'm Cleopatra Barnaby Jones, but you can call me Mountie or Tonight!" Chandler smiled sarcastically but she didn't seem to notice.
"Listen...Mountie" He said "I can't call you tonight or any night, I have a girlfriend..."
"...I bet she's really pretty" Mountie interrupted "But it might not last and well I think you should give me a try"
"It will last" Chandler said "and I don't want to give you a try"
"Come on, You could have dinner with me and then you could have me" Mountie said and giggled.
"No Thanks come on Joey" Chandler said and turned and briskly walked away. Joey followed.
"Can you believe her? The nerve!" Chandler exclaimed, and Joey tapped his shoulder.
"She's still following you" Joey said
"WHAT!" Chandler exclaimed and turned around, then seeing Mountie yelled
She smiled and stood there, and followed when Joey and Chandler went on. It was her new kick to go out with geeky looking guys and who cared if he had a girlfriend, she was probably an ugly little thing. He'd break under her perseverance, after all she was Mountie and she always got her man.
Monica took a whiff of the spaghetti that was boiling in the pot and smiled. It was almost ready. Monica heard the front door opened and the sound of keys being thrown on the table.
"I'm in here Pete" She called as she stirred the open pot. Pete walked into the kitchen and smiled.
"Hey Mon" he said coming up behind her and giving her a hug "it smells great sorry I'm a little late, I had The Mayor on the phone and boy can he talk"
"That's okay, but you'd better go get ready, the other's will be here soon" Monica said.
"Sure" Pete said and gave her a kiss on the neck and then wandered into the hall and up the stairs to the bedroom.
The buzzer went and the Monica picked up the intercom phone.
"Hello?" she said
"Monica!" came Chandler's voice "Let us up there's some looney following us"
"Come on up" Monica said and pressed the buzzer. She put phone down and went back to the pasta.
"Honey!" Pete yelled from the top of the stairs "Where's my blue shirt?"
"The one with the alligator or the computer?"
"Top drawer" Monica called back, and added a little seasoning to the pasta.
The doorbell went and Monica put down her wooden spoon and went to the door. Chandler and Joey stood there and neither looked happy.
"What's the matter?" she asked
"I'm being stalked!" Chandler exclaimed as he came in.
"Yeh and I like the girl" Joey said, following Chandler in and closing the door after him.
"You certainly know how to pick them Joe" Monica said as she took their coats and hung them up in the closet. The buzzer went again and Monica ran to the phone, it was Rachel, Liana and Ross, so she buzzed them in. Monica picked up her wooden spoon and began stirring again, while Joey wandered in and opened the fridge.
"Joey!" Monica exclaimed "get out of the fridge, dinner's almost ready" Joey frowned and closed the door.
"It smells nice Mon" He said and went to dip his finger in.
"JOEY!" Monica exclaimed but Joey's finger was already immersed in the boiling sauce.
"OWW" He yelled and pulled his hand out.
"Quick" Monica said and grabbed his hand just as the doorbell went.
"Chandler get the door" Monica yelled, and turned on the cold water on Joey's finger. There was a yelp from the door, and Chandler came running into the kitchen, followed by a blonde girl and then Liana.
"Chandler! Whatís going on?" Monica exclaimed
"Itís the stalker!" he said.
"Stalker?" Liana asked, "She said she was Pete's niece"
"Well she's not" Chandler said and started to back away towards the living room door.
"What's the problem? Why won't you go out with me?" Mountie asked, advancing on him. Chandler looked around helplessly as she approached.
"Liana.." he pleaded, but she just laughed and nudged Monica.
"Who would of thought that someone would stalk Chandler" Liana said smiling. She lost her smile however as Mountie tried to wrap her arms around a frantic Chandler. Liana strode over and tapped Mountie on the shoulder. Mountie turned and gave her a look.
"Can't you see I'm busy?" Mountie said
"We'll you can go be busy with someone other than my boyfriend, Joey over there, would be happy to get busy with you I'm sure" Liana said and smiled sweetly.
"This is your girlfriend?" Mountie said to Chandler, the disbelief apparent in her voice. Chandler nodded and was about to say something when Liana cut him off.
"Yes, and that's my boyfriend you have your arms around. So would you kindly remove your arms from his shoulders, or I'll remove them from your shoulders" Liana said, the smile never leaving her face. Mountie laughed nervously, and took her arms from Chandler's shoulders.
"I'd better be leaving" she said and made a hasty exit, almost bumping in Phoebe who was coming in the door.
"Where's the fire?" Phoebe called after the fast fleeing Mountie but got no response. She looked to Rachel and Ross who were standing in the hall talking but they didn't notice she was there, so Phoebe went on into the kitchen.
"Who was that?" Phoebe asked, Joey who had his hand wrapped in an ice pack.
"Chandler's stalker" Joey told her, and Phoebe nodded then as if she had second thoughts asked "If she's Chandler's stalker then why was she running away?"
"Cause Liana threatened to rip her arms off" Chandler said and beamed, putting his arm around Liana's shoulder.
"I wasn't actually going to tear them off" she said and smiled wickedly "I would have used a knife," Monica shook her head and looked at Phoebe.
"How did you get in?"
"Pete buzzed me in and the front door was open" Phoebe explained. Monica nodded then sniffed.
"The sauce!" she cried and ran over and pulled it off the heat. She stirred it and smelt to see if it was burnt beyond, repair.
"Oh no" She said, "its ruined inedible!"
"Sounds like something my mother would cook" Liana said.
"You beat me to it" Chandler said and she smiled at him and said, "You're just not fast enough." Just then Pete appeared into the kitchen. Smelling the burnt sauce he asked, "What happened?"
"Joey burnt his finger, and then the sauce burnt" Monica said, emptying the sauce into the bin.
"We'll just order Chinese" Pete said and looked around the kitchen "Where are Ross and Rachel?"
Ross and Rachel were standing out in the hall in a hushed discussion. Every now and then Ross would get frustrated and Rachel would put her hand on his arm to calm. Phoebe looked around the corner and heard Rachel say
"Just one date, for now" She quickly retreated back into the kitchen and didn't hear Ross' reply.
"But we could have more?" he asked "I don't know Rachel, I want to, but only if you go into the relationship this time viewing me as an equal, not as a follower" Rachel nodded, and pushed a loose hair back from her face.
"I know its not like that now Ross" Rachel said "If we go ahead with this then it'll be on equal ground" She placed her hand on his shoulder.
"I don't want things to be the way they were before, I want them to be better" She said, and caught her breath as he smiled.
"Alright" he said, "let's seal the deal with kiss" He leant forward and kissed her, and Rachel let out a sigh inside. She had been afraid that Ross would refuse, but she knew that he was at least ready to give them a chance, but now maybe...maybe this was the start of something new?
Ross opened the door to his apartment and threw his keys down on the table. Butterflies were growing in his stomach, and the excitement was building. Tonight would be the deciding factor. If tonight went well he and Rachel would get back together, and if it didn't then they would just remain friends. Ross went into his room and opened his wardrobe scanning the clothes there, and let his mind wander. Was this what he really wanted? He wasn't sure anymore, things hadn't been the best last time, but Rachel said things would be different. And if they did get back together, things would be different and Ross wasn't sure if he wanted it to be from how is was now. Ross picked out a suit and started to dress with a troubled mind.
Meanwhile Rachel was having similar doubts as she got ready for the date. Did she want to risk losing Ross' friendship, which was so precious to her? Would she and Ross be able to be more than just friends after so long as nothing else? Rachel heard the door slam and there were loud voices, which Rachel recognized as Chandler and Liana.
"I just don't understand why," Liana said as she removed her coat "I really wanted to see that play"
"But she'd follow us!" Chandler exclaimed and Liana shook her head, and knocked her hand on the table.
"I will not let her dictate our lives" Liana said, "You are going to have to learn to deal with her, or get rid of her Chandler"
"How can I do that!"
"Threaten to call the police!" Liana said, "There is a law against stalking!"
"I've already tried that, they can't do anything" Chandler argued "Do you think I wouldn't have thought of that!"
"NO!" Liana exclaimed "I just...I'm just tried of sitting home every night,"
"You could go out without me if you want to go so much" Chandler said angrily.
"I DON'T WANT TO GO WITHOUT YOU!" Liana cried frustrated and threw her hands up in the air then she stormed into her bedroom. Chandler banged the table
"WELL FINE CAUSE I DON'T WANT YOU TO GO OUT WITHOUT ME EITHER!" Chandler yelled
"FINE!" Liana shouted from behind her door. Chandler kicked the table then went over and knocked on the door. Liana opened the door and looked at him.
"I guess we could stay in" She said, "but I don't want to watch TV"
"Me neither!" Chandler said and grinned and they went into the room and closed the door. When everything was quiet Rachel poked her head out of the bathroom door, and ran over to her bedroom. She closed the door to her room and let out a sign of relief. She looked at her dress on the bed. She was sure Ross would remember it. The green dress she'd worn to Ross' museum benefit, the night when he was going to drink the fat. She remembered that night as she dressed and couldn't believe how childish she had been to Ross. Back then she has thought that not matter what she did Ross would always been there to do what she wanted, but he had shown her when he stood up to her and refused to take all the blame for their break up a few months later. She hadn't been able to accept that then, but now she did. Rachel zipped up her dress and sat down at her table and started to brush her hair. The memory of the night that Ross had helped her put on her make-up when she'd broken her rib came back, and Rachel realized how much he'd always given up for her. She looked at herself in the mirror, and promised herself. "If anyone is going to give anything up it'll be me" She said. There was a knock on the door and Rachel set her brush down and went out to get the door. She was breaking her tradition of not answering the door when she had a date, but since Liana and Chandler were a little preoccupied she'd have to do it herself. She smiled as she opened the door to Ross and let him in.
"You look great!" he said, "I always liked that dress"
"I know" Rachel said "Just let me get my coat" Ross watched her as she ran into her bedroom and came out with her coat, ready to go.
"Lets go" she said and they walked out the door.
Rachel laughed and took a sip of her wine. Ross shook his head. "I'm telling you that's the way it happened" He said, and smiled. "I can't believe my father was such a monster that night, it was so hectic with the two parties and running back and forth between the two" Rachel said. "Yeh, then remember when Joey kissed your mom!" Ross said and Rachel giggled. "He's been scared of her ever since" She said. Ross nodded and looked at her.
"Does this feel any different than when we go out to dinner as friends?" He asked. His question caught Rachel off guard and she stopped to think, then she looked at him and weak smile on her face.
"No," she said and Ross nodded
"Maybe its too late" he said, "I think we've moved on to far"
"You're right, I've been having doubts all night" Rachel said
"Me too, I think we're better off as friends are" Ross said, and Rachel looked around.
"I think we should go" She said and called the waiter for the bill. They shared the bill and went outside, a strange quiet coming over them.
"Do you want me to walk you home?" He asked Rachel and she shook her head.
"I think that I need to be alone, we need to bury it our own ways," she said and Ross nodded, understanding her meaning. Rachel clasped his hand and then started off down the street, as she turned the corner she turned back and waved at him, and he returned her wave but didn't move. Rachel continued on her way, her thoughts on that night didn't notice when she turned off on the wrong street and walked down a dead-end alley. She looked up and realized her mistake and turned to leave only to find the alley opening blocked by a large menacing man. He grinned at her, and Rachel flinched.
"Hello pretty" he said, leering at her. Rachel started to move away from him and he moved closer to her. "I'm gonna get lucky tonight!" he said, and reached out a large hand towards her. Rachel gulped and got ready to scream but no sound came out of her mouth. She backed into the wall terrified. What would she do?
Ross watched Rachel round the corner, but he didn't move from where he stood. It was hard to believe that this was the end, that there was no hope for them. That thought saddens Ross more than it should have, he realized. If they were just good friends wouldn't he be able to let her go? Ross shook his head, and started off after Rachel. He knew what he had to do. He'd convince her. He turned the corner and saw Rachel turn the corner. He speed up his pace, but it took him a while to catch her. He turned around the corner, and he realized he was in a blind alley. Ross' breath caught in his throat. Rachel was backed up against the alley wall and a large man was advancing on her.
"Hey" Ross yelled and the man turned, and looked at Ross.
"This don't concern you buddy" The man said, "Me and my girl are just having a talk" Ross looked at Rachel and held out his hand.
"Come on Rachel, we're leaving" Ross said, and Rachel darted forward. She was about to pass the man when he caught her wrist. Ross grabbed her other hand, and held on tight.
"We are leaving, now" Ross said, slowly, "Let go of her" The man looked at Ross then at Rachel, and at Ross again. He considered his options and stepped forward towards Ross. Ross put out one hand in front of the man's chest.
"Remember there are two of us" Ross said, and the man glanced at Rachel, and smiled. Rachel returned his smiled and as he was turning away whacked him with her handbag. Ross didn't hesitate, and turned and started running with Rachel holding onto his hand for dear life. They ran down the street, checking behind them until they were sure that they were safe. Ross stopped and bent over, out of breath from the long sprint. Rachel leaned against the wall of a building and took in great gulps of air. She wiped away a tear, and then another, until there was so many that she couldn't stop them. Ross turned and took her hand and pulled her into a bear hug.
"Oh Ross" she sobbed "I was so scared" Ross stroked her hair, and kissed the top of her head.
"You're safe now Rach, itís okay," he said holding her tight letting her cry.
She wrapped her arms around his waist and held onto his as if she'd collapse if he wasn't there. After a few minutes the tears began to try up and she sniffed and looked up at Ross.
"Why did you come after me?" she asked and Ross looked at her.
"I realized that I was wrong, that I was being stupid, and I ran after you to tell you, and then when I saw you, I was so afraid of losing you that I understood that I still loved you maybe even more than ever" Ross said, Rachel nodded. "I thought I'd never see you again," she told him "When I saw him I thought that my life was over, and that I'd never be able to tell you that I loved you. I knew then that I'd been wrong back at the restaurant. We've both been so wrong for so long" Ross said leant over and kissed her.
Rachel returned the kiss and the smiled and looked at him.
"I love you my lobster" she said, and kissed him and felt as if her heart might explode with happiness. When they finished, Ross took her hand and they went home, reunited once again, and both were determined to be united forever.