45 and 43 please omg your writing is amazing I’m in love!!!!
Hope you don’t mind I’m going to do 43 first in this ask and then make a separate post for 45 and tag you in it! I assumed you wanted these as Bughead but if not just holler at me and I’ll rewrite what you wanted! Also, you are too sweet thank you thank you! (Shameless self-promo but check out more of my writing on AO3)
43. Falling in love with best friend’s partner AU (Flipped things on its head a little bit. Also this is going to be a bit of a long one, I got carried away! I hope you like angst <3)
Maybe she should have realized it sooner, how hopelessly she was in love with Jughead Jones. Maybe if she had, she wouldn’t be standing here next to her best friend, Veronica Lodge, helping her decide which stationery to have at their wedding. They wanted an old Hollywood glamour wedding. Betty tried to be supportive, tried to be happy, but the truth was there were pages in her diary planning her marriage to the Jones boy.
Veronica didn’t like what he liked. She hardly knew him. She wasn’t the one who was by his side when his dad got thrown in jail or the one who had driven cross country so they could surprise Jellybean on her graduation day. No, she had been far too busy with that. Likely with her driver, Archibald Andrews.
Betty knew there was something happening between them. Something that would break Jughead’s heart if he knew. Something that would destroy him. Because when he loved, he loved absolutely. He held on tight, refused to let go. Kicked and screamed and fought for that person. She loved Veronica, with every fiber of her body, but this marriage was going to end in turmoil, and she couldn’t bear to see Jughead suffer like that.
“I have to go check out the flowers V,” Betty said, “I’ll be back in half an hour? Please don’t kill the caterer in that time. You know he’s trying his best but a wedding cake that huge is a lot to ask for.”
“What am I supposed to do? My groom’s single request in the entire wedding was that cake! If it’s not perfect then the wedding isn’t perfect!”
The two laughed and Betty departed, lost in her own thoughts. It didn’t take long for her to realize she’d left her phone back in the Lodge’s apartment. Despite having been together for two years, Jughead and Veronica had not moved in together. They both “valued their space”. Which meant, V liked her closet, and Jughead liked being able to leave his book and manuscripts thrown about a small room with little to no repercussion.
She turned around, frustrated. Of course, that would happen today. On top of every terrible thing that was already going wrong in her life, like watching the literal love of her life marry someone completely wrong for them, she’d left her phone 20 stories up and hadn’t noticed until she was at the bottom. And now both the elevators were broken. If she hadn’t been waiting on a call from her sister Polly, Betty would have counted her loses and come back after the florist meeting.
Enough flights to leave her breathless later and she had finally reached Veronica’s apartment again. It should have been simple. A laugh as she grabbed her phone, assurance that lilies and roses looked great together, and another sprint down the stairs.
But no. Life would not be kind to her today. The giggle was the first clue, the smear of red lipstick on Archie’s face the second. They hadn’t seen her, not yet, but Betty used her reporter’s ears and listened.
“I love you Archiekins. I wish this was our wedding I was planning,” she sounded wistful, making Betty’s stomach churn with anger, “But Daddy would never allow it.”
“You could just run away with me Ronnie. Forget this place, forget him, and we could start somewhere else together. You have that apartment in Barcelona. I could write there.”
Veronica’s voice sounded choked, tears in her eyes as she whispered, “I wish. God, I wish.”
Phone forgotten, Betty ran. Angry pedestrians shouted at her, street sellers tried to con her out of money, but it all sounded like a buzzing white noise. She didn’t know where she was running until she ended up right outside apartment 505. For a moment, she hesitated. Her moral compass was on the fritz. Could she possibly betray Veronica’s trust like this? Her best friend. But it wasn’t right for Jughead not to know. He couldn’t walk into a loveless marriage without being well informed.
She took an unsteady breath and knocked.
Shuffling from inside, followed by a sleep graveled shout let her know that Jughead, at 3 PM, was just now waking up. She couldn’t help but smile. That was just like him. Staying up until the sun was rising, burning holes in his keyboard.
When he answered the door, his signature cap missing and sleep still in his eyes, Betty smiled. Even without his morning (or rather, afternoon coffee) and his teeth unbrushed this man could blow her heart to pieces. He was everything she wanted.
“Hey Betts,” he smiled and opened the door further so she could sneak into his apartment, “What brings you here on this fine Manhattan…” his eyes drifted to the clock hanging above his desk and winced, “Afternoon. Wow. Guess I slept through every alarm I had. Want some coffee?”
“I’m fine Juggie. This isn’t purely a social call anyway…” her throat felt tight and she tried to keep the tears at bay. No this wasn’t about her. It was about him.
He shrugged and moved towards the coffee pot. “Is it about Veronica? She’s driving me up a wall lately,” his tone turned mocking, “Jug what do you think of the drapes? Jones, should we have these napkins or these? Can I call you Forsythe during our vows it sounds nicer.”
Betty tried to laugh, for his sake, to give him a moment of happiness before she crushed him. But it came out strangled, chocked. For a moment, their eyes met, worry lacing his expression, he opened his mouth to speak again, but she beat him to it.
“Veronica’s cheating on you,” Classic Cooper, breaking news like a blunt knife to the heart. She tried to think of anything to comfort him, “I-I’m sorry and-”
Jughead shook his head, pouring the coffee from the pot into his cup. He liked things black.
The silence came again. Nothing but the ticking of the clock’s second hand until she could finally break it. “You what?”
“I’m not an idiot Betty,” he took a sip, relaxing when the caffeinated wave hit him, “I’m not the one messing up her lipstick most Tuesday nights. I’m not the one texting her, making her smile when we’re supposed to be having date-night.”
She was taken aback, green eyes wide as saucers. “Then why haven’t you said anything? Why are you still marrying her Juggie? You’re just setting yourself up for something you know won’t work.”
At last his composure seemed to break. Tears tugged at the edges of his eyes and he looked away, forcing their gazes apart. It took a moment for him to finally speak, but when he did her heart broke.
“I’m a weirdo. A kid who’s dad is in jail for drug trafficking who writes mystery novels and forgets to sleep most nights. Normal people don’t fall in love with guys like me. And I figured if I just pretended we could have this unspoken agreement. She keeps seeing Archie behind my back and I get to pretend to have a regular life for once. Who else is going to marry someone like me, Betts?”
She took a shaky breath, closing the distance between them with a kiss. It was gentle, chaste, but hopefully he knew, without a doubt, that she had pages upon pages dedicated to just how special he was.