DISCLAIMER: You sure I still have to do this? Really, they care that much? What if I just---Fine, fine, the disclaimer. You know it by now (follow the bouncing ball o' disclosure...) Amy Sherman-Palladino wrote it, Dorothy Parker Drank Here Productions produced it, Hofflund-Polone did something there too. Warner Bros. Television aired the show, The WB and CW was where to be to know, and their network colors aren't blue. I'm not going to mention another entity mentioned later in the story as it would ruin it, but it is a real business in Hartford I just looked up in research. All other trademarks are the property of their respective entities.
AUTHOR'S NOTE: "Do you find me attractive?" No, I'm not asking any of you that regarding me (please, don't send me mail answering that. My ego can take only so much bruising). Rather, this is the prompt my beta Danielle gave me for one of her six MTEL acing reward 'drabbles' (mm-hmm, let's just pretend this is despite the 5k+ word count...*whistles innocently*). That was the only required part of this challenge, along with the fact it had to be a Lorelai/Paris story. It took me awhile to figure out a proper way to write this and this might seem a bit elaborate for such a simple prompt, but I just had to tackle this one with full gusto. Again, thank you Danielle for these wonderful prompts and your constant encouragement about my work. Without you, I may have given up long ago on continuing to write and shied away. If it wasn't for you, I would have never discovered the other fandoms which will be a part of my later stories or drabbles for you. This is the second of six I'm writing for her; a first project for Otalia called Shower of Affection was posted two days before and can be found on my LJ page and ff.net accounts. Finally, status update for those on GGSlash; yes, Longing will be updated one day, along with The Innkeeper's Lover. I just find some waning inspiration and I'm not going to put out inferior product. Trust me when I say that you will not be disappointed when either of those see a new chapter. My goal; a new chapter out by mid-July for Longing.
SPOILERS: Beyond nothing at all in whatever that thing David Rosenthal and Dawn "Really, you had no business meddling with the show" Ostroff called "the seventh season" happening, this goes from the sixth season finale. Christopher is never anywhere near Lorelai's precious lady parts in any way, the Huntzbergers got cleaned out in the stock market and the Great Fall of the Newspaper and are a non-entity in this story in any way, and Rory never had to have her graduation ruined by a proposal, nor did Lorelai have to learn the ins and outs of French marriage laws. Much less learn French. And of course, as in all later Yale fics I write, Paris's parents paid their taxes on time, they didn't flee the country, and she still lives in comfortable wealth. However Luke and Lorelai went back to being friends after it didn't work out post-April.
ARCHIVING: Only with the permission of the author.
An Attractive Query
Lorelai still couldn't believe that in all of those years of life coaching and therapy, that Paris enjoyed something more than making arts and crafts projects.
Which is why she was so thankful when she came home from work to find the girl who had somehow wormed her way into her heart putting the finishing touches on a generous portion of incredibly delicious beef nachos. So it wasn't kosher; Paris was more into the more spiritual parts of her faith than the silly things that seemed easily solved by the improved food storage processes of the 20th century. She dove right in, complimenting the bright young woman, able to relax on her summer vacation before her third year at Harvard Med. With Rory covering the president for a small Internet wire service in Washington, she was all alone and not to be interrupted for the next week at all.
It wasn't supposed to happen that Lorelai and Paris were to fall in love. It was only the most complete of coincidences that her and Luke broke up at the same time four years back, while Paris called it off with Doyle over political differences. She was just on her way to talk to Christopher up in Boston, when the phone rang. She picked it up and found herself on the receiving end of a rant about Doyle and how offended she was that he would actually consider Michelle Malkin as a part of a ménage a trois. "It was bad enough that he has this fetish for the ladies of Fox News, but how dare he! How dare he think that Ann Coulter would be not only great at debate, but giving a blowjob! I wouldn't trust that bitch within 500 feet of me--"
"Paris, are you OK?" she asked, wearily. "I need to get going."
"Oh, I'm just fine. I'm coming off the third relationship of my life and this time it ended because I can't stand the way he eyes up some hillbilly fox from north of Anchorage named Sarah Palin. Would you believe she wants to run the state of Alaska? I've read up on her, and it's shocking. Yeah, she has the naughty librarian look down pat and I would totally make out with her because hey, I don't mind swinging around occasionally, but the woman's nuts. Doyle finds her hot. It troubles me."
"Hey, hon." She finally slumped on her couch, finding the idea of a crazy Paris to calm down much more appealing than having to again counsel Chris on how potty training works. "Come over. I got beer, chips, bad movies and best of all, I can buy that little metal thingy that blocks Fox News out so you never have to lay eyes on those former beauty pageant winners passing off as respected news anchors ever again."
"I'm sorry Luke broke up with you," she said, seriously. "He's a dope."
"He's not a dope. Probably not right for me right now though. He has a kid who's more important. I guess he needs to make that connection and...I just need to realize that I'm not priority number one for now. Maybe I never will be again."
"Want me to stop at A&P for cookie dough and Red Vines then? Looks like we both have a lot to talk about."
"Anything will help right now. Even alcohol."
"Nooo alcohol. We are not going to repeat my performance of Barefoot in the Park with a .23 BAC anytime soon."
"Do what you must then, see you in a bit." Lorelai hung up the phone, and found a surprising sense of calm that Paris had called her in her worst moment.
Likely, it turned out to be the call that saved her life. With the both of them stuck in Stars Hollow ranting about the evils of men over a Godzilla marathon and large amounts of junk food which were sure to make Paris turn green later on, they found that they were on the same wavelength with each other. Through the next few months they also conspired to save Rory from a life of trophy wifery by pulling their own strings to break Logan and Rory up. It took a few tries and some hand-wringing, but they soon were witness to a scene in the town square where Logan decided to prank the Christmas scene with the Brigade. They thought it would be funny.
Judge Morrison thought otherwise, and sentenced Logan and Colin to two years of jail time and $2 million restitution for damage to the NRHP-classified gazebo which took woodcrafters three months to repair. Obviously, Rory would not want to marry a jailbird, and she broke up with him, happily independent and living her own life in Washington after a 15 month trek on the campaign trail with the future president. Meanwhile over the summer after undergraduation, Paris found a home with Lorelai, due to her parents having donated the Manor to the state historical society for preservation purposes. At first the arrangement was uncomfortable, but soon with it becoming apparent Luke would only remain Lorelai's friend in the future, and Paris having no prospects of any future male in her future, they began to bond. At first, nervously and denying their feelings, dancing around them and chalking them up to sexual tension. Without Rory to referee, Paris and Lorelai were left to their own devices in the old house, and then with only days before Paris departed for Boston, the two women celebrated her going off into the world with red wine and heaping helping of box-made brownies.
With her filter loosened, Paris began to admit she was attracted to the former Chilton mother, explaining why in further detail as she pushed herself against the woman on the couch. Lorelai couldn't deny how soft and fragrant Paris was, and how adorable she really was under her brusque surface. Though they tried to deny their feelings further, Lorelai soon threw caution to the wind and decided to test her feelings for the feisty blonde to see if they were indeed as true as she believed.
Later on that night, the both of them laying in Lorelai's bed, they were indeed exhausted and spooned into each other. Paris was incredibly soft to Lorelai, and with all of her relationship failures in life, Paris came to the conclusion that all those years she needed the tenderness and love of another woman rather than the complexities and her hyperfocus on keeping a romance with a guy burning. Both of them determined that they would use that night as a test and see if it was only a fluke, two women needing to seek comfort to relieve their wants and desires.
Fall break in October proved this was hardly the case. For two months after Paris's departure Lorelai moped around the Inn and tried her best to talk to Paris every day, while the blonde couldn't stand the distance between them. It became soon clear that there was a connection between them that was more than sexual as Paris found she had to change her cell plan to add more minutes on because a "good night" without her favorite woman in the world was indeed, not a good night.
They developed further through Paris's various school recesses, the few days of contact Paris had used to strengthen how much they loved each other. Secret dates, gifts exchanged, spurns of Miss Patty when it came to new hot strapping young man. They quietly built things up through talking, slow lovemaking, cards and letters sent between Stars Hollow and Cambridge as Lorelai saw her Inn grow, while Paris's doctoral skills increased.
Both of them hated keeping Rory in the dark. Finally they told her one day in June when Rory came to visit. Surprisingly, she was cool with it, although weirded out by the idea of her best friend kissing her mother. Slowly their romance was able to come out of hiding and with the summer of 2008 they were able to be bolder and out there. Thankfully Luke was fine with their romance, though of course Emily attempted to throw a wrench in the works of it all, which they dodged.
Paris's father and Richard meanwhile only wanted to see their daughters happy and completely approved, while Mrs. Gellar made her feelings known with a permanent relocation to the Bahamas. Everything for the two women somehow developed wonderfully, still with the regular kinds of petty fights and jealousies of their normal romances, but the two women worked it out at the end.
Now it was mid-July of 2009. The dog days of summer, the days Paris hated the most because she seemed to have a warm-blooded demeanor, sweating all the time in the sticky Connecticut heat during the month. She was laying on the couch reading a book next to Lorelai, wiping sweat off her brow. All of her clothes were in the washer and dryer downstairs, and she lay on the furniture in only a blue tank top and matching little boyshorts which included the little cut on the front. After Lorelai had made love and marked her so many times, the girl who formerly only wore turtlenecks from January to December was comfortable in her own skin, and found every excuse in the book to parade around her girlfriend in very little.
Lorelai beckoned her to get up and rub her feet as she placed them in Paris's lap, smiling at her woman. A long walk home due to construction on the main street, Lorelai was also damp and exhausted, her work blazer hanging on a kitchen chair, hair all out of place and her forehead dripping with perspiration as she silently motioned for Paris to give her one of her lovely deep footrubs upon her black stockinged feet. Paris was only too happy to oblige and they caught each other up on their own individual days, Paris excitedly describing a surgery she was encouraged to watch down in New Haven while Lorelai talked about how eager she was to get a group of insurance convention attendees desperate for rooms and having to take what she had at the Dragonfly. They loved each other, and nothing could stop that.
Except for Lorelai's own self-doubt. She knew this would be the time usually in her life she'd try to push her lover away. It happened with Max, it happened with Luke, and this was the stage where it would happen with Paris.
But she worked through them with courage and plenty of talks with Sookie and Rory. Although they still never understood to this day why Lorelai would fall in love with an intense girl like Paris, they understood that she needed these doubts dealt with. Four weeks of talks which culminated with a decision she would be making tonight.
Now she just had to lead Paris into that decision.
"Paris, do you find me attractive?" The question was asked quietly as Paris cleaned up the plates and pans after Lorelai and her made quick work of the nachos. Sitting at the table, she found it odd to watch her girlfriend who only eight years before would have been buttoned up and afraid to show any skin. Now she was doing dishes in her underwear without any kinds of qualms and knowing Lorelai was enjoying every minute of it.
"What's that, Lor?" She turned around to see Lorelai giving her a serious look. "I didn't hear you."
"I asked if you find me attractive." She seemed unsteady, afraid. The question jarred Paris from the task and she dropped the cloth and pan into the sink.
"Why are you asking?" she responded, shaking her head. "I love you. I think one of the main reasons for me coming down here and living with you when I don't have to be in Cambridge as that I do indeed find you attractive."
"I know, but I just have these nagging doubts lately. We've been together for a long time and..." she paused, taking a deep breath. "Do you still feel that same rush you did the first time you kissed me? Or do you just think of me as someone who provides you a roof and sex?"
Paris tossed her hair back as she felt a bit chagrined by her girlfriend's thinking. She didn't know where this line of thinking was coming from at all and wrinkled her nose at the woman, withering her eyes. "Don't tell me Christopher is trying to get back with you, again. Lord, does that guy know when to back off?"
"It's not him--"
"I know you still carry something for him, and that's OK. But just because he fathered your child gives him no right to legislate your life. I get that he hates me, but he needs to get over the fact I am in love with you and nothing will change that immaterial fact."
"No, no, hon, I love you too. Seriously. Christopher is out of the picture completely, ever since that time he tried to hit on me at Yale graduation." She held up her hand and tried to calm the younger woman down, seeing her tighten her grip around the coffee cup containing her wintergreen tea. "This is not about how much you love me, not at all. I just wonder..." She paused a bit. "When you see me, do you still see me as...attractive. As in sexually alluring."
"Lorelai, of course I do." Widening her eyes, she still didn't understand the reason for her lover to question her. "You don't think I go to bed with you every night and think I'm damned lucky that somehow we have this connection which tells you that I'm a sexy medical student who makes that Izzie on that ridiculously erroneous medical drama you make me watch every Thursday night seem incredibly dull in comparison?" She slid her hands into Lorelai's, smiling at her. "If you don't think I find you attractive in any way, shape or form, you don't know me."
"Well it's just that...that..." Lorelai sighed as she tried to explain why she brought up the reason for her question. "I sort of had an impromptu reunion of the Chilton booster club at the Inn this afternoon."
"Oh, dear. You saw Ava, Ginger, Aubrey and Mena, you mean?" Paris rolled her eyes, never able to understand how the petty parents of the booster club could completely hijack her agenda during her year as student body president.
"I did. And they looked completely unchanged from how they were your junior year! Ava was still going on about Luke still looked hot, while Aubrey was still a dimbulb knockout. I sat down with them, described my life since '03, and how I came to be with you, and they told me that they didn't understand how I would be attractive to you." She frowned as she came to the summit of her conversation. "Aubrey, with her tip...she slipped in a card to a plastic surgeon in Greenwich, while Ginger suggested attending a Botox party with her. Really does a lot for the self-esteem, and then--"
"You felt miserable from one o'clock on, right?" Paris gave her a knowing look, breathing deeply. Lorelai nodded sadly.
"I have a few wrinkles, I admit it. I'm just hitting my forties here and they're pretty much asserting that I'm a cougar and only took you in out of desperation. It made me feel as if I didn't deserve you. That you should date someone your own age rather than some crazy woman with the entire pop culture section of Wikipedia stuck in her head and an abnormal sex drive and love for caffeine." Lorelai tried to calm herself down, but her hands were shaking. "Ava even told me that she could set me up with a young Chilton alum guy if I wanted to be set up."
"Knowing her, she'd probably stick you with Duncan or Bowman. Prepare for venereal diseases." She was truly angry at the petty women.
"I just didn't know what to say. They want me there next Tuesday night."
"Are you kidding? That's when we mock 90210 and leer over how Lori Loughlin remains so hot. And there is your example of how staying true to yourself pays off in the end." Paris used the lovely actress to lead into her reassurance. "Lor, if you have to be validated by having your face tightened or filled with bacteria in order to think you're attractive, that is incredibly wrong. I would be very disappointed if you did anything to your body in an attempt to make me love you more."
Beckoning her to get up, Paris took Lorelai into her arms and slid her arms onto the brunette's waist, the height difference between them no match for the affection they shared. "You are incredibly beautiful, and aging gracefully. There is no need to change yourself in order to keep up this insane arms race with the women of Hartford society. You're not them. You'll never be them. And I don't want you anywhere near them again; trust me when I see Aubrey or Ava next time that they're gonna need a restraining order from me when I'm done with them."
"You don't mean that," Lorelai said. But Paris shook her head and had an intense look in her brown eyes.
"I mean everything I say. And you forget how I fell in love with you in the first place." She brought Lorelai close against her, bracing against the sink. "You are one hot woman, literally, but it was your incredible sense of humor, your love of deep conversation and going off for hours on a tangent that drew me towards you as much more than just the mom of my best friend. How you give a fuck about this town and you fought tooth and nail for Taylor not to redirect the tourist dollars towards some inane effort to boost the economy using an ice cream festival. You're also very accomplished and going for an advanced MBA in your spare time in night classes, and you've encouraged me to strive to be the best in my class. In a way, you're like the mother I've never had, but you're also the lover I've always wanted."
Paris felt the tears begin to stir in her eyes. Where in the past she would have done her best to hold them back, she felt free to cry as she talked. "I find you attractive, but not just because you're a beautiful lady. You have done so much more with your life than I could ever dream of in mine. Even if I ever transplant a heart into a President or a Queen, it will mean nothing compared to how when you could've just given up twenty-five years ago and be content to live off a trust and a husband you know you didn't truly love, you pulled yourself by your bootstraps and made this awesome life for yourself. I mean, God, nobody, not even Rory, gives you credit for rising from that low to this high where you're self-sufficient, independent and never have to depend on the opinion of your parents again."
She took a deep breath, her face flushed as she finished her passionate appeal. "I find you attractive. But on every level. Your surface beauty, your inner beauty, the way you live to serve others rather than your own interests. I remember four years ago, that night, in the lowest period of both of our lives, how you confessed you were ready to sleep with Christopher, to make Luke hurt, and how scummy that it made you feel to even have a thought like that. How I was ready to flee Yale and just go off on my own. But we survived this all, together. And I'm going to be damned if I let some whores who live on image and wealth try to take that away from you with hidden insults." She placed a hand on Lorelai's cheek, motioning her to meet her face-to-face. "I would probably be either unhappy if I had never made that call that evening. I think I would have even..." Paris's lip quivered violently. "Oh, God. I can't even say it. But Lorelai..." She ran her fingers through the woman's voluminous hair. "I will never, ever get enough of you. I am lucky every day that your daughter chose Chilton and I got to know you as more than 'scandal girl'. You're only human and I understand if you have these doubts that you're still attractive to me, or if I'm getting to that point where I'm beginning to doubt you'll stay with me. But I can get past that. I want you to be there for me, and in every sense of the word, you are always attractive to me." Pressing a kiss against her lover's lips, Lorelai found that the young woman's passion for her had not dissipated in the least.
All of those thoughts spinning in her mind were crushed with Paris's monologue. She had been afraid to have a talk like this, something that had made her doubt herself days before she was to marry Max, and when she let Luke go for the sake of his daughter. She had expected an argument tonight, even for Paris to stomp out of the house with a cloud over her head.
Never had she expected to been kissing her young girlfriend like she had that first time she faced her feelings for the intense blonde. She brought Paris close and easily deepened the kiss, hands moving up her shirt as she prepared to...
Then she stopped herself. With all she had, she pulled away and knew that what she was about to do would be right. Paris, winded, called her by name and tried to figure out what was going on.
Intense blue eyes burned into hers. This time, there was no situation or ceremony defining the next occurrence. It was a quiet moment between two women in love, at a place in their lives where they knew what they wanted. The innkeeper, usually without a loss of words, had only two to lay out before her lover.
There was a pregnant pause. Lorelai licked her lips, feeling the release of the words as a relief. They were now out there for Paris to digest, and consider. She reached into the pocket of her skirt while the blonde felt the entire world spin her dizzy by the curveball just thrown at her.
The young woman had no monologue this time. Pulling down her undershirt, she stood against the sink in a daze with her right foot resting on the cabinet door handle.
"Huh?" Her face was entirely blank.
Then the ramifications of the previous question came out in full force as Lorelai brought a purple velvet box out from her pocket. In gold foil script, the logo of Armstrong Rockwell Fine Jewelers sat on top of the small enclosure. Opening it up, Lorelai moved to bend down onto her knee and had the opened box in one hand, as she took the right hand of her lover in the other.
Not a proposal of panic, nor one made in a romantic bluster of daisies. It was just Lorelai, Paris, and a brilliant silver engagement band with a simple blue two-carat diamond resting in the middle. The brunette's lip quivered as she confessed her reasoning for the question.
"I was...I was going to wait until you had to go back to Harvard in August, do the romantic dinner and dancing, the big ceremony and getting your dad's permission, everything. But this afternoon, those women made me doubt myself. For the first time in forty years, I felt inferior in my life, like I was nothing, that I was not good enough for you. But when you answered my question to you, in the way you did, with that passion you apply to everything you do, I knew I couldn't hold back any longer or let my own doubts eradicate these three years we have spent together." She took a breath, tears filling her eyes as she felt the words come from her heart. "I love you, with everything I have, and I know that you hold a view of marriage as maybe archaic or insulting. But over the last couple months, I've been thinking about it, since the governor signed the bill allowing us to become whole. And my life is finite. I won't be here forever. But I know now, what we have, I will never find it again."
Her voice was tight as she saw Paris hold her left hand to her heart. She was crying again, trying to hold it together but unable to do so.
"Paris Eustace Gellar, will you do me the honor of being my wife? Will you marry me?"
It hit her then. The way Lorelai looked at her in that moment, it was the true love she experience with Asher. But this was more intense. It filled her soul and made her want to be more than she thought she could be. In all of her years on Earth, she had never dreamed at all of her proposal beyond the rote restaurant setting in all of her finery, in front of a man she knew saw through her and right to her money.
She had never dreamed of Lorelai's proposal. Her heart had told her 'when it was time, it would be right. You'll know, Par.' Dr. Birnbaum had told her the same thing in her therapy sessions; that it was not wrong to not dream of a proposal or marriage ceremony.
And there she was in the 115 year-old house of her girlfriend, in her underwear no less, with her Lor looking up at her expectedly, awaiting her answer. The exact opposite of all her preconceptions.
Her body shook. Her mouth was dry and her body was limp, while her brain was in a power outage. But her soul spoke for her. It was all the push she needed.
"Yes. Yes, I will." The words creaked from her throat. The ring was slid onto her finger and she cried as it went over her knuckle and rested upon her lower finger, not too tight nor loose. It was perfect.
A normal woman would look at it right away to examine it closer. But Paris was too numb at that moment to even know there was a ring on her finger. Brown eyes into blue, she felt everything change with Lorelai's proposal. One that months ago would have seen them vowing in another state, instead of the woman's own hard-earned establishment.
Lorelai looked at her with all the love she could hold. In the small woman, she saw her heart, her future.
"So, attractive?" she asked one more time to her now-fiancée, confirming her final opinion.
Feeling came back to Paris. Along with joy and desire. She threw herself into the woman's arms, leaping up so that she was eye level. Paris smiled, her face stained with tear tracks, and now instead of focused on losing her lover, pleased to begin making plans with her future bride.
She kissed the other woman square on the lips, whispering to her. "After making me say all of that? You better think you're attractive." Lorelai ran her fingers through Paris's hair, smiling, enjoying for once a proposal on her own simple terms and that it had been accepted without any question.
More kissing, and more heated breathing. There was no need to rush to the nearest communications device to spread the news for either woman. They were too busy moving out of the kitchen, kissing and necking as if they were both teenagers just discovering the wonders of sex for the first time. Soon, Paris's tank top was hurriedly thrown off, the first item to be snagged by her new item suggesting their betrothment. Then Lorelai's camisole came next. The ring box was still on the kitchen table, left to be ignored until they would have to finally leave the house and admit everything.
Paris snagged the zip of Lorelai's skirt as she hurriedly attempted to take it off upon the stairs into her pantyhose. She expected annoyance, but only one feeling was expressed by the hotelier Paris had given the pet name 'my Wonder Woman' to.
"Don't care...rip it...need you...need my baby...need...my bride." She husked the final two words with an erotic tone of voice that stirred the younger woman with a deep want to be ruined for anybody else. With the skirt falling without ceremony onto the stairway, came quite a few strings of nylon trailing against the zipper teeth into their bedroom, where Lorelai threw Paris down to the bed, blissful to prove that she was still quite attractive.
"Y'know what?" Lorelai smiled as she took in Paris circling her middle and pinky fingers around her new ring, while her hands slid into the panties.
"Hmm?" Paris grinned at her lover.
"Ava's dating a 17 year-old and Aubrey's doing a reality show. Real Housewife Cougar Bachelorettes of the Nutmeg State or some crap. We don't need to them to prove I'm attractive, right?" She tossed her hair back as she moved to sidle face to face with her future wife.
"I'm quite happy here, my attractive Lorelai Gilmore." But she gave her a look of danger. "They're not invited, I hope."
"They will be arrested for trespassing."
"Still sending them a note saying your little doubts finally convinced you to take the plunge. And so glad you did." She pulled down the hose from Lorelai's ass, laughing as Lorelai kissed the hollow of her neck deeply, ready to leave lasting marks of her claim on the young woman.
"I am too, Par." She then silenced the girl from further conversation with a few amazing things she had learned through the years with her, and Paris was finally able to experience the one engagement-related matter she always dreamed about...
The amazing and powerful post-engagement sex.
Hey, Paris is in Mensa; she's not going to deny her own psyche that awesome pleasure. Would you?
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