Title: Our Two Consciences: Very First Lie
Author: Michelle H.
Feedback: michelle@propertykey.com
Summary: Josh's pov after 17 People. Corresponds with Laurel's Take
Take Me Home.
Category: General J/D
Rating PG
Disclaimer: Not mine. No profit.
Thanks Laurel!
Spoilers: Up to and including 17 People.
Very First Lie by Material Issue isn't mine either, but it's a good

I love Oklahoma!

Okay, so not the state. The musical. The Rodgers and Hammerstein

And before you get all excited and tell Sam, let me just say this: No.

We're not going to go there. He doesn't need to know. Plus, he'd just
want to debate the Rodgers and Hammerstein vs. Gilbert and Sullivan
thing, and I would imagine he could go on about that kind of thing for
days on end, which would surely result in a sudden, very painful blow to
the head. Whether the head in question would be Sam's, as a result of
me actually injuring him, or mine, when I banged it sharply and
repeatedly against whatever hard, flat object was nearby, remains in

Suffice it to say I had a thing. For a girl. In high school.

Elaine McGrady. Sophomore year. She was Irish Catholic. I was
fifteen, and in way over my head. Elaine was the same age as I was, but
she was—-well, girls mature faster than boys at that age.


She auditioned for Oklahoma! She wanted the part of Laurey, but was
cast as Ado Annie instead. Really, she was made for the part.

Elaine couldn't say no either.

Except to me. Repeatedly. It's no big deal, really. No pain, no
gain. Although in the case of Elaine McGrady, for me there was pain,
but still no gain.

Lots and lots of pain.

But anyway. I had a thing. For Elaine McGrady, sophomore year in high
school. When I found out she had a part in Oklahoma! I vowed that I
would go to every single performance. And I did. I saw that thing
fifteen times.

I was pathetic.

Elaine McGrady couldn't sing her way out of a paper bag.

I didn't care, though. Because in my mind, I was Will Parker.

Boy meets girl, boy loves girl, girl loves someone else, boy pines for

And of course you get the obligatory broadway happy ending, when Elaine
(Okay, Ado Annie) realizes that the big dumb jock (er, exotic Persian
peddler) she's seeing doesn't want her for honorable reasons, and that
while my reasons aren't terribly honorable either, I am the obvious
choice because I really love her.

Well, in tenth grade I did. Until she moved away at the end of the

And the next year I moved on to Janice Quill.

She had no problem saying no to me either.

But, that's beside the point. The point here is that Donna and I are
arguing about flowers, and her start date, and all of a sudden I call
her Ado Annie. It just flew out of my mouth and I had no way to stop

It hung there in the air for a moment, too.

Thankfully, Donna didn't seem to care. Maybe she doesn't know who Ado
Annie is, although I believe theater was one of her many majors or
minors when she was in college.

Maybe she wasn't paying attention to what I was saying.

God, I hate it when she does that. Although maybe this time it was a
good thing.

So here's the thing. Where did the Ado Annie thing come from? What do
Will Parker and Ado Annie and Ali Hakim have to do with me and Donna and
Dr. Freeride?

Oh, no.

Okay, so somehow I've developed (inappropriate) feelings for Donna, who
can't say no to Dr. Freeride. Although eventually she did, over the
asshole finding beer with his buddies more important than seeing his
beautiful, intelligent, and yes, hysterically funny girlfriend in the
hospital, but I didn't find that out until later. I'm very proud of her
for that, by the way. Even though it was a bad relationship and she
shouldn't have gone back, there is a certain safety and security with
someone familiar.

And hey, even Donna makes mistakes.

But anyway. So apparently I've developed feelings for Donna, which
shouldn't surprise me. I guess more than anything I feel elated and
high and relieved.

And a little panicked. This is, after all, a precarious situation.

But I don't need to worry about it; nothing will ever happen. Not
here. Not that I don't want it to, of course, but not now. The
administration couldn't handle it. Besides, according to Donna, women
want to be wooed, and who has the time?

But back to Donna and the flowers. I mean, all I wanted was a thank
you. All I wanted was for her to say they were pretty.

It wouldn't have hurt if she would have sniffed them deeply and made a
sighing noise in her throat, either. I'm a sucker for that sighing
noise that women make.

But no. She wanted to bicker. So we bickered. All evening.

It's really, really hard to find the funny when you're bickering with a
woman who you're apparently in love with. Hell, it's hard to tie your
shoes when you're bickering with a woman who you're apparently in love

And then she looked me in the eye and said "Josh, I'm going to give you
a little gift right now that you don't deserve."

I'm thinking one thing: lap dance. Okay, so one more: Catholic school
girl uniform. Okay, now I've having Britny Fox 'Girlschool' video

Sam would appreciate that, by the way. Big Britny Fox fan, that Sam.

No, not really.

So then she looks me in the eye and tells me that she lied. About
falling on the ice.

I bought her a big econo-size container of Tidy Cat because I thought
she slipped and fell on the ice, dammit. She told me it was a late

So she tells me this amazing story and I'm thinking about the pristine,
Protestant Donnatella Moss. The one who is completely trustworthy and
would never, ever lie about something so important. I mean, the woman
was in a car accident!

And then I remember something somebody said, once. Something about

"If you polled one hundred Donnas and asked them if we should go out,
you'd get a high positive response. But the poll wouldn't tell you it's
because she likes you. And she knows it's beginning to show, and she
needs to cover herself with misdirection."

The pristine, Protestant Donnatella Moss lied to me.

The pristine, Protestant Donnatella Moss is capable of misdirection.

So there's this weird knot in my stomach and I'm silently freaking out
and there's this rushing sound in my ears and I start to ponder my own

And then I tell her the truth.

"I'm just saying," I begin, as I am prone to doing, "if you were in an
accident I wouldn't stop for a beer."

I'm realizing, too late, as I am also prone to doing, that I just opened
myself up for a sensitive system remark. Oh, not this again.

"If you were in an accident," she says, "I wouldn't stop for red
lights," she breezes past me. "Thanks for taking me back," she says.
"The flowers are beautiful."

When I can actually breathe again, I contemplate skipping and hovering
around Donna like some sort of moth by a street lamp, and generally
acting like an idiot.

My burning obsession with Elaine McGrady taught me one important lesson,
however. Sometimes it's better not to stalk and badger people. There
is something to be said for taking your time and letting things just
naturally unfold.

So while I'd like to run after Donna and hover and skip and be a basic
pain in the ass, I'm going to just hang out here for a minute. Let the
evening's revelations percolate, so to speak.

But Joey Lucas was right.

What the hell. I start skipping down the hall, trying to find my
beautiful, intelligent, hysterically funny, and misdirected assistant.



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