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مجموعه: داوسون کریک / کتاب: شروع چیزهای دیگر / فصل 8

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CHAPTER EIGHT - At The Dance

The Capeside High football team had won their game. Everyone at the dance was celebrating - everyone except Pacey. He was standing by a wall in the school gymnasium. He wasn’t watching the hundreds of happy teenagers who were dancing. He was watching the woman of his dreams. Tamara Jacobs was talking to Ben Gold. She was wearing a dark blue dress. She looked wonderful. And she looked happy.

A few seconds later, Mr Gold walked away. He went to talk to someone else.

“Will Tamara be happy to see me?” Pacey asked himself. “Maybe she will be happy. Maybe this will be the best night of my life - well, I’ll soon know about that.”

Quickly, he walked up to the beautiful English teacher.

“Hello, Miss Jacobs,” he said. “How are you?”

“Oh, Pacey - hello,” Miss Jacobs said. She didn’t look happy now. “I’m fine. How are you this evening?”

“I want to talk to you,” Pacey said. “I want to talk about our relationship. Will you dance with me?”

“No, Pacey, that’s not a good idea,” Miss Jacobs said. “And we don’t have a relationship!” She was worried - Pacey could see that.

“I’m a teacher here,” she continued. “Please remember that.”

“Did you remember that when you kissed me?” Pacey asked.

“I have to talk to someone now, Pacey,” Miss Jacobs said. “I’m sorry. Goodbye.”

And she walked quickly away.

Dawson and Joey stood by the doorway of the gymnasium. Large pieces of brightly colored cloth were hanging from the ceiling. Someone had painted pictures of huge fish on the pieces of cloth. Brightly colored lights shone around the walls. Dawson and Joey were watching the happy young people who were dancing. Joey smiled when she heard the music. Old songs by the Beach Boys were still popular in Capeside!

Soon Joey and Dawson saw Jen. She was dancing with Cliff Elliot. They danced very well together. They were smiling at each other.

“We have to do something quickly,” Dawson said.

“Dawson, here is a correction,” Joey replied. “You have to do something quickly. This isn’t my problem.”

“You have to help me,” Dawson said. “Do you dance, Joey?”

“No, Dawson,” said Joey. “I don’t dance - you know that. I never dance!”

“Well, this is the first night of the rest of your life,” said Dawson. “Tonight, you must dance.”

He grabbed Joey’s arm and he pulled her into the middle of the room.

“Dawson, you are crazy,” Joey said quietly. She was not happy. But she tried to dance with him. And she tried to smile.

After a few minutes, Dawson whispered in her ear.

“Joey, you’re good at this,” he said softly.

Then suddenly, Jen and Cliff were dancing beside them.

“Hi,” Jen said to Dawson. “You came to the dance. I’m pleased.”

Dawson wanted to speak. But he couldn’t think of any words.

Jen smiled at him. “This is Cliff!” she said. “Cliff, these are my friends, Joey and Dawson.”

And a few seconds later, Cliff and Jen were dancing on the other side of the room.

Half an hour later, Dawson met Jen outside the gymnasium. She was alone. Joey was talking to some friends and Dawson had wanted to get away from the noise of the music for a few minutes.

“Hi, Dawson,” Jen said. “Can we dance together now?”

“Where’s Cliff?” Dawson asked.

“Oh, do you want to dance with Cliff?” Jen asked. “Don’t you want to dance with me?” She laughed.

But Dawson didn’t laugh. He wasn’t happy.

“Well, you made a date with Cliff,” he said angrily. “I don’t understand your reasons. But he’s the boy that you really like. He has muscles and money but he isn’t intelligent. Maybe he doesn’t want you to dance with me.”

“OK, Dawson,” Jen replied. Now she was angry too. “If you don’t want to dance with me, that’s great! Goodbye.”

She walked quickly away.

Dawson watched her go.

“I’m a fool,” he told himself. “Jen asked me to dance with her. Did I say yes? No, I didn’t. I said some angry jealous words about Cliff instead.”

He walked towards the gymnasium.

Joey was looking for Dawson. She couldn’t see him anywhere. But she saw Pacey coming towards her. He was looking for someone too.

Pacey came up to Joey and grabbed her arm. Then he whispered in her ear.

“Joey, you have to dance with me,” he said quickly. Suddenly, Joey’s body felt cold. She remembered the day when Pacey had tried to kiss her. She didn’t want to dance with him now. She didn’t want Pacey to hold her in his arms. But he had been her friend for a long time. She tried to be nice to him.

“Pacey, you’re very kind,” she said. “But I don’t dance. And please don’t hurt my arm.”

Pacey pulled her to the center of the room. Couples were dancing slowly to a sad song.

“You have to dance with me!” he told her. “I want to make Tamara jealous. She won’t dance with me. But if she sees me dancing with you, she’ll be jealous. Then she’ll be nice to me.”

“No, Pacey,” Joey said. “Leave me alone.”

But Pacey started to dance. And he held Joey very tightly in his arms. She had to dance with him.

“I hate you,” she told him.

“Please, Joey,” Pacey said. “This is important to me. I’ll give you some money if you’ll dance with me. Maybe you’ll hate me for the rest of your life. But please dance with me now.”

At that moment, they danced past Miss Jacobs. Suddenly, Pacey pulled Joey closer to him. And he kissed her on the lips.

Joey stopped moving. Her face became red. Her skin became hot. She was very, very angry. She hit Pacey on one side of his face. Then she hit him on the other side. She hit him very hard. After that, she turned and ran out of the room.

Pacey looked around the room. Everybody was looking at him. And Miss Jacobs had seen everything that had happened!

Dawson was standing by the wall of the gymnasium. He was watching the dancers. Where was Joey? He didn’t know. He hadn’t seen her for some time. But Jen was dancing with Cliff again.

“If I don’t do something soon, I’m going to lose Jen,” he thought. “She’ll be Cliff’s girlfriend. She won’t make any more dates with me. She’ll make dates with Cliff and she’ll tell me about them every day. I’ll be Jen’s friend - the one who she tells about her boyfriends. But I won’t be her boyfriend. If my life is a movie, this is a very bad movie. I’m going to write some new scenes!”

The music stopped for a few moments, and people stopped dancing. Before the music started again, Dawson moved quickly. Suddenly, he was standing next to Jen and Cliff. He grabbed Cliff’s arm and pulled him away from Jen.

“Goodbye, Cliff,” he said. “It’s time to say goodnight. Thanks for bringing Jen to the dance. But I’m going to dance with her now. And I’m going to dance with her for the rest of the evening.”

Cliff was very surprised. Jen was surprised too.

“Dawson, what are you doing?” she asked him.

“That’s a good question,” Cliff said. “What are you doing?”

“I’m going to dance with Jen,” Dawson said.

Cliff looked at Jen.

“Do you want to be with this - person?”

She didn’t answer. She looked at Cliff. Then she looked at Dawson. But she didn’t speak. She didn’t have anything to say.

“She doesn’t want to dance with you, Leery,” Cliff said. “She’s my girlfriend.” He was very angry. “You have to leave now. If you don’t, I’ll - “ “No, she’s my girlfriend.” Dawson said. “And you have to leave!” He was angry too.

But Jen was angrier than both of them.

“This is so stupid!” she shouted. “You’re both behaving like little kids. I’ll leave. Then you won’t have a problem!”

Then she turned and left the room.

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