There’s a Fine, Fine Line
Jughead x Reader
The Reader and Jughead have a complicated relationship. Based on the requested song: 7 Things by Miley Cyrus
Warning: some swearing
Word count: 2,562
A/N: I know the request wanted it focused on one line and I tried I really did but the other parts were too cute once I started writing I’m sorry I hope you like it still. Also PS It would have helped if Miley would have numbered the seven things because like I swear i was counting like 9 things at one point in my childhood. Also speaking of childhood the flashback actually happened to me let’s all relive my worst middle school memory yay.
You make me laugh, you make me cry
I don’t know which side to buy
There’s a thin line between love and hate. Jughead Jones rides that line with you, and it frustrates you to no end.
You had been ‘friends’ with him since you can remember, now only hanging out when Archie and Betty are there. You didn’t hate him at first, in fact, when you were a kid you had a crush on him for what seemed like the longest time.
At the 8th grade dance, you even asked him to dance. You remember what happened vividly, almost like a movie.
A short blue dress, black flats, and a braid down your back. Your makeup is done to perfection, and you feel on top of the world. Betty meets up with you at your place before the dance, her dress is a short milky white with a black necklace and earrings. Her blonde hair tied up in a bun, a few strands hanging down in a perfect messy kind of way.
“Wow.” you say.
“Do you think Archie will like it?” she asks, going to your mirror and fiddling with the hem of her dress.
“If he doesn’t I will punch him.” You say with a small giggle.
“Thanks.” She smiles in return.
A car horn beeps from outside and you both jump up. It was Archie and his dad. They were going to drive you there.
You both race down the stairs and out the door, tickets in hand.
Archie sits up front, and so you both open the door and get in the back.
“There are my girls.” He says with a smile. All of you, plus Jughead, have been an inseparable crew since the beginning of time, and it all seems to work. You like Jug, Betty likes Archie, Archie and Jug are best friends, and you and Betty are best friends. It all just works.
You arrive at the dance and meet up with Jug, going to the dance floor to sway and jump the night away at your last dance of middle school. Half way through the night a slow song begins to play.
Archie smiles as you see him searching for Betty, and Jughead goes to the side of the dance floor. It didn’t look like he was going to ask someone.
Betty seems to have disappeared, probably to the bathroom, and before you know it Archie has come up beside you and has asked you to dance.
You say yes, of course. Archie was your friend, and you know nothing could ever come out of it. He is just a friend, this is a friend dance. People do that right?
His hands are on your hips and your hands around his neck. You can’t seem to look him in the eyes. You didn’t want to see him looking at you, as this should be Betty’s dance.
Soon, one slow song ends, and yet another begins. You thank Archie, as you see Betty coming back from the bathroom, and almost immediately he makes his way to her. He is just being nice, wanting to dance with both of us on our last 8th grade dance.
You search out Jughead on the side of the dance floor, finding him walking out of the room. His body seems tense, like he wants to leave.
You approach him, trying to chase after him.
“Juggie!” you say, touching his shoulder.
He stops and turns around.
“I don’t like you, (Y/N).” he says plainly.
A pain shoots through your body. The boy you had liked since the 2nd grade was standing before you, one of your very good friends, saying that they didn’t like you.
He turns around again and storms off, before you can ask what exactly he means. Did he mean that he doesn’t like like you? Or does he mean that he just doesn’t like you in general? Does he not like you as a person?
Your head spins as you go out to the hallway, sitting against the wall in your dress and braid, putting your head into your knees as you take deep breaths, already trying to deny what just happened.
That was only two years ago. After thinking about it over and over again, you came to the conclusion that he meant that he didn’t like you in general. It was a painful discovery, but it was one you learned to deal with, and one you’re still dealing with to this day.
You seem to only tolerate each other now, never speaking outside of when you hang out with all four of you. Like today.
You aren’t entirely sure what the plans are, but you just know that he will be there. You take the whole day to mentally prepare yourself before texting Betty.
‘what’s the plan?’ you send.
‘Pop’s, then a movie at Archie’s place.’ she replies.
You respond with a smiley face emoji, and as the last bell rings you pull your hoodie up over your head and walk to the diner.
They’re at the normal booth when you get there, Jughead on his laptop, a space open across from him. You scoot in across Archie, taking your spot and ordering a milkshake.
“How was your day?” Archie asks.
“The usual.” you say, shrugging your shoulders, “I went to Geometry class, my calculator died, and continued to spiral into the torturous hell of triangles.”
Your friends chuckle, but Jughead only raises his eyebrows.
“Are you sure that’s not just high school in general?” Jughead smirks, causing even more laughs from Betty and Jughead. Oddly enough, you can’t help but crack a smile yourself.
Your friends they’re jerks
And when you act like them, just know it hurts
Jughead doesn’t have many friends he hangs out with besides you and Betty and Archie, but the ones he did have weren’t the kind of people you would think.
He basically lives at the Drive-In, and you can’t help but notice that some of the Southside Serpents are starting to hang out around there.
Okay, so technically you can’t exactly call them Jug’s ‘friends.’ They more are just forced to hang out around each other because of a common interest, but he’s still starting to pick up on some things that weren’t exactly desirable.
He’s late all the time, cancelling plans all of a sudden, not telling even Archie where he is or how he’s been. He’s dropped off the face of the planet, you actually haven’t seen him in a few months, and neither has Archie, and you can tell it’s taken a toll on him. Even you were starting to worry about him.
On your walk home from school you decide to take a different route. You had to cut through a few yards and walk down a trail through the woods at the back of your house, but the day was beautiful and you couldn’t pass up the opportunity to see the leaves change.
You see a figure sitting on a bench with a big backpack on the path, and only when you get closer do you notice the familiar beanie. It’s over his eyes, like he’s sleeping.
“(Y/N)?” he jumps, nearly falling over. He lands in the leaves on the ground, his beanie falling off on the path. He straightens himself up, quickly grabbing his signature hat and putting it back on his black locks.
“Where have you been?” you ask, putting your hands on your hips.
“Around.” He says, putting his hands in the pockets of his sweatshirt.
“Really?” you raise your eyebrows, challenging him to tell you more.
“Yeah.” he responds, not taking the bait.
“Well Archie is worried half to death, so is Betty. You should probably talk to them.” You say, deflecting the conversation away from how you might be affected. You cross your arms and shuffle your feet on the path, causing some gravel to kick up and roll towards his feet.
“I have been. It’s only been like a week since I saw you guys anyway.” he shrugs.
You look up. Did he not realize how long he’s been gone? “It’s been two months, Jughead.” you tell him.
“Oh…really?” he raises his eyebrows this time, genuinely confused as to how that amount of time has passed.
“Yes. Please explain.” You state simply, looking at him.
“Why would I tell you?” he smirks, scoffing at the implication of telling me.
“Okay, whatever.” you brush it off. You are used to this by now, “Just please tell Archie about whatever this is.” you say, giving him a look up and down.
“What does that mean?” he challenges.
“You don’t think I don’t notice? You hanging out with all the serpents at the drive-in?” now it was your turn to raise your eyebrows at him.
He looks shocked, and doesn’t say a word.
“They’re making you a different person.” you tell him, walking away.
“Wait,” he says before you get too far.
“What?” you say, spinning on your heels and turning to face him again.
“I’m not hanging out with them.” he tells you, his eyes to the ground.
“Really? That’s what it looks like. And it hurts Archie, and Betty and it hurts-” you stop yourself from saying it hurts you. You’re too busy trying to pry it out of him you don’t notice that he’s looking at you now.
“Hurts what?” he probes.
“It hurts the relationship you have with them.” you cover for yourself.
It’s silent for a minute, you now meeting his gaze.
“Come with me.” he sighs, picking up his backpack and walking in the direction opposite of where you were going initially.
You didn’t argue, though.
Maybe today will be different, maybe today he’s decided not to hate you.
And the 7th thing I hate the most that you do
You make me love you
He leads you to the Drive-in, going to the back room.
He opens the door, leading you into a room with a mattress on the floor, a mirror on the wall, and some clothes and posters tossed carelessly around the space.
You instantly realize, that’s why he’s been spending so much time here. He lives here. This is his home, and nobody noticed it. Not even Archie knew.
“Jughead, why didn’t you come to any of us?” you finally ask, looking around the room, walking to the center.
“I can take care of myself.” he says simply.
“The thing is, you don’t have to. You have Archie, and Betty, and..me.” you say, looking him dead in the eyes.
“Really? Cause last time I checked you seem to hate me.” he takes his hands out of his sweatshirt, taking a few steps toward you.
“I’ve never hated you, Juggie.” you say, not breaking eye contact.
“Don’t,” he takes a breath, “call me that.” His voice is rough and deep, pointing at me with every word. His eyes are flaring, yet stone cold. He is angry at something or someone, you can’t tell.
“I don’t know what I ever did to make you hate me, but I know I sure as hell wasn’t the one who started this.” you say, throwing your hands up in defeat, waiting for a response.
All he does is scoff.
“Fine, have fun being alone, but don’t say I never tried.” you say, pushing past him and making your way towards the door to leave.
“Tried? You’ve barely given me the time of day.” You turn around at this, walking back over to him.
“The only reason I haven’t is because you said you didn’t like me.” You tell him.
“Why would I say something like that?” he gets defensive.
“Don’t act like you don’t remember.” you scoff now, folding your arms once more and rolling your eyes.
He just stares at you.
“You don’t like me, I get it. I’ve moved on with my life. I’ve accepted it. You’ve never liked me.” you say, wanting the conversation to be over.
“I don’t think you do get it.” he says, looking down at his feet.
“Then tell me what I’m missing.”
“The way he looks at you. The way he smiles when you walk in the room. His attention, devoted to you.” he looks at you again, trying to meet your eyes.
“What? What are you talking about?” you ask, confused as ever.
“Archie! It’s clear he likes you. He has since 8th grade. I wasn’t stupid, (Y/N), I saw you dancing with him.” he nearly screams.
“He only had eyes for you.” He says, hurt now behind his eyes.
“Oh my god.” You put your hand to your head, bringing it down over your eyes. You can’t help but crack a smile and let out a little laugh at how fucked up the situation is. It’s been so muddled and there’s been so much miscommunication.
“What?” he says, his face a mix of confusion and sadness and still some anger.
“Jug, I like you.” You say without thinking.
“What?” he asks.
“He asked me to dance because Betty was in the bathroom. I thought he wanted to dance with her.” you ramble, not realize what he’s asking.
“No, no. What did you just say?”
You pause a moment, just hitting you that you just admitted that you liked him, that you still like him. He obviously heard it, there was no turning back now.
“I- I like you, Jug. I always have.” you let out with a sigh, unable to look at him.
You’re afraid of what he’s going to say, bracing yourself for another rejection. Instead, you feel his hand going to the back of your neck as he pulls you close, placing a kiss on your lips. It was sweet, and simple, a thousand words said in just one touch.
“I’m so sorry.” he whispers against your lips as you break apart, keeping your foreheads together.
“For saying I didn’t like you. When I saw you guys I got so mad, and when you came up to me afterwards it was the only thing I could think of. I was… well, I was in middle school.” he lets out a small laugh, unable to find another explanation.
“It’s okay, we both were.” you come back, letting out a small laugh as well.
He takes a small step back from you, brushing the hair out of your face with his fingers, but you can still feel the heavy weight in the air, a mix of your heavy breathing and the anticipation of what could happen next.
“I hate this.” Jughead breaks the silence, and you’re unable to read his expression.
You pause. The memory flashing in your mind. This was going to be a repeat of middle school, you could feel it.
“Hate what?” you ask this time.
“I hate that you make my stomach tie in knots, I hate what your smile does to my heart. I hate that I’ve liked you for such a long time, and I’ve been too blind to see that you liked me back.”
“There’s a fine, fine line between love and hate, Jughead,” you say, “you just have to decide which side to be on.”
“Then I don’t just like you, (Y/N),” he says. You can feel yourself stop breathing.
“I love you.”