Sorry I ain’t got no money I’m not trying to be funny but I left it all at home today
You can call me what you wanna I ain’t giving you a dollar this time I ain’t gonna run away
You might knock me down, you might knock me down, but I will get back up again
You can call it how you wanna I ain’t giving you a dollar this time I ain’t gonna run away
What is most important to you? The question was bold, standing out against everything else on your page. It was sitting there blank, the only question you had skimmed over. Sure, at first glance it was easy. My friends, you thought. Betty, Veronica, Jughead, Kevin… Archie. But that was easy. Every other applicant trying to score a job at Pop’s was bound to say the same tedious answers. My family, my friends, my education… blah blah blah. You wanted to stand out. Every other question you answered above and beyond (Jughead tutoring you for free in English was just about the best thing that ever happened to you) and wanted to make your application a star among clouds.
You were currently sitting in a booth alone at the diner you visited oh so frequently visited. Normally you were here with at least one of your friends, but today you needed some peace quiet and french fries to get you through this paper. You’d been tapping your pen against the tabletop for the last ten minutes, eyes reading the words over and over.
“You want your usual milkshake doll?” You looked up to see Pop there, smiling kindly at you. “Filling out my job application for here?” You nodded.
“Just one left” You pulled a smile, as he scribbled down your order. Chocolate milkshake, as always. He looked over the empty lines on your form.
“Tricky one for ya?”
“Too easy” You replied with a sigh. Pop chuckled, sliding his pen behind his ear, and his notepad into the pocket of his apron.
“Friends comin’ tonight? You’re never here all alone”
“Yeah I came here by myself. Needed some calm”
“Your one pal’s real quiet. Not the loner one with the laptop, the one who comes here. Probably writin’ poems or somethin’ he’s always singing” You laughed quietly at his mention of Archie.
“Yeah, Archie’s looking to be a singer now”
“Really? Pro athlete all star boy? Wants to be a musician?” You nodded, still smiling softly. “He any good?”
“He’s great” You said genuinely. “Really great. He has some serious talent”
“Is that a blush I see creepin’ up your face?” You looked away quickly. “Wow, it’s redder than your boyfriend’s hair”
“Oh he’s not my-”
“I’m not her boyfriend” You jumped, turning as Archie had just walked in, wandering towards your table and sliding in the booth across from you.
“Boy how did you even know-”
“We have this conversation all the time” You said, cutting off Pop. Because it was true. Everyone always asked ‘what the lovely couple would like to eat’ or ‘how long have you been dating?’ or ‘you have a lovely girlfriend sir’ even your grandmother once asked if you and him were together yet. You’d laughed and shook your head but looked away, trying to hide the slight frown on your lips.
“I’ll have a burger” Archie said with a signature grin to Pop. He winked, and walked off. “So. Why’d you come here all alone?” Archie asked, folding his hands together, and putting his arms on the table and leaning towards you. His eyes flickered down to the paper between the two of you.
“It’s my job application… to work here” You told him. No one knew, just your parents, and Pop. So you weren’t actually sure how he would react.
But you weren’t expecting him to break into a grin the size of the moon, and clap his hands together before holding yours firmly. Your eyes widened slightly at the gesture, and he was still smiling.
“y/n that’s great!”
“Yeah you love it here! Plus free food! And extra cash!” You giggled softly and nervously at that, looking down at the table so he wouldn’t see the blush that rose to your cheeks upon his hands clasping onto yours.
“You’re right” You said, and gently pulled your hands out of his.
“Took you long enough to admit it” You smiled a little, already going back to your paper. “Need help?” You shook your head, and Archie nodded, watching you intently. You were quiet, this didn’t go unnoticed by him, but he knew it was because you were in a deep concentration.
Your eyes were swallowing the words on the page, wide and full of curious thought. Every once in awhile your nose would crinkle up, and your lip would curl at the end. When it wasn’t curled, your bottom lip was being tucked in between your teeth.
He thought it was utterly beautiful.
After an hour, you’d finished up the form, and your meals. Pop had gleefully taken the application for you. Telling you that the odds of you getting the job were highly in your favor.
“Thank you so much Pop” You said with a big grin as you pulled on your hoodie.
“No problem toots” The man said, before walking back behind the counter, and going back into the kitchen to finish up his orders. Archie walked up next to you, and you smiled up at him
“You want to go to the drive in?” He asked, and you nodded, letting him put his hat over your head, until your ears were covered.
“Thanks” You mumbled, and you both walked out of the diner.
“I drove the truck” Archie said, revealing his keys before grinning. “And I brought a bunch of blankets too so we can set them up in the back and stuff” He unlocked the doors, and you both climbed in.
“It’s been awhile, since we’ve seen a movie here” You said. “You should text Betty, and Ronnie” You said.
“I did” He replied quickly. “Veronica’s figuring out stuff with her mom and Betty’s staying back in the projection booth with Jughead” You nodded.
“Well that just means one on one time for me and my favorite ginger” You said with a giggle as you bumped your elbow against his arm. Archie rolled his eyes, but smiled genuinely towards you.
The theatre wasn’t very busy, there were so manyother things that tenagers found to do than go sit outside in the cold watching old movies. But you still saw the magic and was always entertained being at the Twilight.
You couldn’t remember the last time that you were there though, it seemed like it had been ages. But you’d been so wrapped up in the anxieties offered by life, that you had barely spent time outside of school, and your room.
“Hey, hey y/n” You jumped slightly in your seat, looking over at Archie. “We’re here.. You alright? You pulled a tight smile and nodded. Then unbuckled your seatbelt, and heading to the back of the truck. You stared up at the screen, playing trailers and ads as Archie laid blankets over the back bed of the truck.
“Hey Archie?” You called, and he looked up at you. Both of you on either side of the car.
“Yeah?” You bit your cheek, thinking for a moment. But staring at him and his green eyes, you couldn’t find the right words. Suddenly, ‘I’m sorry I’ve pulled away from us’ just didn’t feel right. “y/n?” Archie gave you a concerned look, but you shook your head, tucking your hair back behind your ear. “Hey… what’s going on?” He straightened out the end of the blanket and walked over to you. “And don’t say nothing, cause I know that’s a lie”
“I don’t wanna lie” Archie nodded, hands curling on your wrists and tugging you to the end of the truck.
“Alright, well I’m here to listen… whenever you want to talk” You nodded your head as he pushed himself up onto the bed. Then turned around, wrapped his hands around your waist and pulled you up too. “Do you want to?” You nodded, crawling back towards the the mountain of pillows.
“Yeah I just don’t know how to start” He nodded, and you pulled your knees towards your chest.
“Well… I’ve got all night” Archie said, and you nodded, wrapping your arms around your legs. “Come here, lean over” Archie held his arm out, and he could see the deep blush creeping up your cheeks. But you did, leaning your head onto his chest, and letting his arm drape around your shoulders. “It’s okay” His hand rubbed circles on your waist.
“It is” He grew quieter, as the movie began to play. “No matter what, it’s gonna be okay” You took in a shaky breath, and watched the movie silently for a few moments. You tried to calm your thoughts, and slow your rapid heart beat. “Would this have to be about Grundy?” You scoffed.
“No, no it’s not”
“Okay well anything that could result in me being mad at you is out the window so now there’s really nothing to be worried abou-”
“I had sex with Chuck” His head turned to you so fast, it was just a blur of red hair in front of you. His eyes were wide, a hard green that sprung tears in your own.
“No… no it was consensual” His green orbs instantly softened. “Two weeks ago I was at the Blossoms, for Cheryl’s party?” He nodded, prompting you to continue. “Add uh… Ronnie was off making out with Betty… and I was just around Chuck and Reggie cause I don’t know… they’re your football friends and um…”
“I’m not upset” Archie assured you, cupping a hand around your cheek, trying to comfort you best he can.
“He asked me if I wanted to go upstairs… and I wasn’t drunk or anything I knew what he wanted and I just wanted to get over… I told him I wanted to”
“What were you getting over?” You shook your head, looking away and causing his hand to fall from your face.
“Just life” You said weakly. Alright, so maybe him and Grundy has been eating at you a bit. You let out a sigh. “I don’t want to lie to you Archie”
“Then don’t, you don’t have to” He responded.
“Okay then- then I have to be really honest about something” His brows raised momentarily, but nodded, silently telling you to continue. “I uh- wow this is embarrassing”
“Trust me, I’ve done some weird things I doubt you could say anything that could shock-”
“Archie I’m sorta in love with you”
You proved him wrong in an instant.
“Sort of?” You blinked at his response.
“That’s it? That’s all you have to say I just told you like, my biggest secret ever and that’s all you have to say-?”
“I only ask because I really like you” You stopped talking. “So if you only sorta like me then I don’t want to push you to do something you don’t want to do” You stared at him, trying to get a read from his expression. A gentle look, soft features, the slightest ghost of a smile on his lips.
“So it might not be sorta… it might be a lot” You told him, and Archie pulled up a smile.
“I can work with that” He said, and leaned forward, eyes flicking from your lips to your eyes, as though asking for permission. You nodded, and met him halfway.
It wasn’t like anything you’d experienced before, or heard or read or watched. It wasn’t fireworks exploding behind your eyes. But it was magical, in some way. In the softness, the sweet and gentle touch. It was his warm hands cupping your face and it was his vanilla tasting lips on yours. It was his rapid heartbeat against your chest, out of sync with yours but just as fast. It was your shaky breaths when you’d part for the shortest of moments. It was the way you laid down on the bed of the truck, in a comfortable, and non-prompting way. (you were in public this couldn’t escalate any further anyways) But you could just lay there on your sides, kissing softly and lightly. It was like you were both experimenting with your feelings, relishing in how good it felt to touch the other.
“Knock knock hookers” You jumped, seeing Kevin standing next to the truck. Instantly your face flushed a red pink color, and Archie just groaned as he sat up. “Thought I’d come join you, but I don’t want to be a cock block so say the word and I’ll be on my merry way” He smiled cheekily, and you rolled your eyes.
“Get up here Kev” You said to your friend, sitting up next to Archie.
“What’d I miss in the film?” He asked, climbing up to sit next to you. You looked at Archie, having no idea.
“Don’t look at me I wasn’t paying attention” He shook his head as he whispered.
“That’s alright, watching you two swallow tongue was entertainment enough for me” Kevin said, causing you to roll your eyes again.
“We didn’t even-”
“Don’t even bother” You said to Archie, letting your head fall onto his shoulder. “It’s Kevin we’re talking about. He only speaks dirty” Kevin winked at you, and seductively swiped his tongue over his top lip. You rolled your eyes (again) and slapped his arm. Then settled back against Archie.
There were probably still conversations to be had and questions to be discussed, but you could put that off till later. You were far too comfortable where you were now to ruin it by talking.
But it was you and Archie.
How bad could it be?
This time, this time
This time, this time I ain’t gonna run, run, run, run…