The Fourth Musketeer
Pairing: Archie x
Description: A small comment from Betty triggers many painful memories for Archie about a lost love.
Word count: 1,405
A/N: so this isn’t based off of any request, I was just inspired to write this fic. hope you enjoy!
“It’ll be like old times,” Betty said, hopeful eyes staring at Archie.
“The three musketeers,” he laughed. Betty bit her lip, her smile slightly fading.
“Actually, Archie,” she corrected, “there were four of us.”
“(Y/N)!” a newly-turned six year old Archie exclaimed. "I didn’t think you were gonna come!“
"Of course I came!” (Y/N) giggled, stepping into the Andrews house. "You’re my best friend.“ Archie pulled (Y/N) into a hug.
"You’re my best friend too, (Y/N),” he grinned.
“Yeah, four of us,” Archie muttered, turning away from Betty. She frowned, realizing she reopened that wound too soon.
“I’m sorry Archie, I didn’t mean-”
“It’s fine, Betty,” Archie grimaced.
“No, I shouldn’t have brought it up,” she apologized.
“But there were four of us,” Archie admitted. "I guess I was just trying to forget the fourth.“
"Why do we only come here when they play this movie?” ten year old (Y/N) questioned, gesturing towards the movie playing on the Twilight Drive-In screen. Archie shrugged, wrapping his arm around (Y/N)’s shoulders.
“Because it’s my favorite,” he replied. (Y/N) rolled her eyes.
“Don’t you want to watch something else for a change?” she asked, looking up at him with a smile. "You know, discover something new?“
"No,” Archie refused her suggestion, immaturely shaking his head. "I like things just the way they are.“
Archie couldn’t get (Y/N) out of his head for the rest of the day. Throughout school, and after school during the preparations for Jughead’s party, Archie’s mind kept going back to (Y/N). For two years, he had blocked out all memories of her. Now, she was pictured clear in his mind. Her memory was haunting him, and Archie could do nothing but push through the day as if nothing was wrong.
"Archie,” (Y/N) whimpered, standing on his front porch. He ran out towards her and enveloped her in a hug as soon as he reached her.
“What?” he asked, burying his face into her hair. "What’s wrong?“ (Y/N) gripped onto his t-shirt, her hands desperately holding onto her best friend.
"I’m moving,” she sobbed. "I’m moving next month.“ Archie’s arms dropped, and he took a step back.
"Moving?” he echoed. "But what about 8th grade?“ (Y/N) helplessly shrugged, tears continuing to roll down her cheeks. "It’s our last year before high school. We were gonna…” The rest of Archie’s sentence was stuck in his throat.
“I know,” she cried. "I know, Archie. You think I wanted this?“ He frantically shook his head.
"No, no, of course not.”
“We’re leaving in July,” she explained. "I tried to convince my parents not to move, or at least to leave me behind.“
"You could stay with us,” Archie offered. A bittersweet smile creeped onto (Y/N)’s lips.
“I know,” she said. “I told them that.”
“Jesus, (Y/N),” Archie mumbled as he stumbled into his bedroom, ignoring the party going on downstairs. "(Y/N).“ He repeated her name over and over again, reminiscing on the way her name felt on his tongue. All the memories that he had hidden away from himself came tumbling back, and he was suddenly overwhelmed with emotions that he had forgotten how they felt. He frustratedly tugged at his hair, struggling to cope with his feelings. Her sparkling eyes and joyous laugh were still engraved in the back of his mind. How could he ever forget? "God, (Y/N), I’m so sorry.” He continued to drunkenly pace around his room, head spinning with memories of (Y/N). Every moment they shared, every hug they had, every chance he missed to tell her he loved her. He missed every single opportunity he had to tell her. "I should’ve told her,“ he moaned. An idea lit up in Archie’s mind, so he began to search his room. He tossed clothes and blankets aside until he found his phone laying on his nightstand. He picked it up and immediately dialed (Y/N)’s number by memory.
"I’m sorry, this number no longer exists,” the monotonous robot answered his call. Archie screamed out in frustration, throwing his phone across his room against the wall.
“I want to talk to her!” he screamed, punching his bed. "I need her!“
"Archie?” Veronica called out as she cautiously his room. He paused his rampage as he turned to face the raven-haired girl.
“What?” he snapped.
“You’re making a lot of noise,” Veronica ignored the bite in his voice. "I wanted to make sure you’re okay.“
"I’m not…” he clutched his head, sitting down on his bed, “I’m not okay. She’s gone.”
“Who?” Veronica questioned, sitting next to Archie.
“(Y/N),” he moaned. "(Y/N)’s gone.“
"Who’s that?” Veronica asked. Archie glared at her and stood up, stepping away from her.
“I loved her,” he whispered, flopping back onto his bed. Veronica frowned. "God, I should’ve left Riverdale when my mom offered.“
"But then we would’ve never met,” Veronica quipped. "And that, Archiekins, would be a tragedy of epic proportions.“ She glanced at his lips, then back up to his eyes. Leaning in, she connected her lips with his. It only lasted a moment before Archie pulled away.
"No, Veronica,” he stopped her. "I’m sorry, but… you’re not her.“
"I’m sorry,” she apologized. "That was stupid and selfish of me, I shouldn’t have-“
"It’s fine,” Archie interrupted her. "It’s not your fault, I just… the wound is still kinda fresh, you know?“ Veronica nodded.
"She sounds lovely,” she offered. "Can you tell me about her?“ Archie inhaled deeply.
"We were best friends,” he started, and a smile already grew on his face. "Our parents were good friends, so we knew each other since birth. We were two peas in a pod. Then we met Jughead and Betty, and we became the four musketeers. We’d do everything together. But (Y/N) and I were still the closest.“
"When did you fall in love with her?” Veronica inquired.
“I think I always was,” Archie answered truthfully. Veronica sighed; she knew there was no competing with even the memory of (Y/N). "But I don’t think I realized it until I kissed her.“
"Did you know some people have already had their first kiss?” (Y/N) asked Archie as she sat on a swing.
“Like who?” he questioned. They were eleven.
“I heard Cheryl kissed someone,” (Y/N) shrugged. "I don’t know who though.“
"She could be lying,” Archie said.
“Josie, too,” (Y/N) interjected.
“Maybe they kissed each other,” Archie laughed, and (Y/N) giggled with him. Once their laughs died down, they swung in silence.
“Who do you want to be your first kiss?” (Y/N) broke the silence.
“I don’t know,” Archie shrugged. "What about you?“
"There’s not really anyone I want to kiss,” she answered. "The only good guys in Riverdale are you and Jughead.“
"Would you kiss Jughead?”
“Ew, no!” she squealed. "Jughead is like my brother!“
"Am I a brother to you?” Archie asked. (Y/N) grew quiet and shrugged.
“You’re my best friend, Arch,” she responded.
“So does that mean you would kiss me?” he smirked. (Y/N) blushed.
“Would you kiss me?” she countered, causing Archie to blush. They both grew quiet, each embarrassed by the thought of kissing each other.
“I’d want you to be my first kiss,” he said. (Y/N)’s head snapped up to look at Archie.
“Really?” she asked. He nodded. "I want you to be my first kiss too.“
"What if…” Archie nervously stuttered, “What if we did it now? Like, kiss each other. Just so that we’re definitely each other’s first kiss.” (Y/N) pretended to contemplate it for a moment, but she already knew her answer.
“Sure,” she agreed nonchalantly. Her heart was about to beat out of her chest. Archie jumped off of the swing and stepped towards (Y/N). Both of their eyes fluttered closed, and they pressed their lips against each other’s. They pulled apart a second after, a blush spreading across both of their cheeks. Archie hopped back onto the swing next to (Y/N). Neither of them spoke about the kiss.
“Do you think she knew?” Veronica asked. Archie raised a puzzled eyebrow. "Do you think she knew that you loved her?“ she elaborated. Archie shrugged.
"Maybe,” he responded. "I hope so. I never told her, though. God, I should’ve told her.“
"Hey,” Veronica reached a comforting hand out towards Archie. "Don’t beat yourself up over it. From what you told me, it sounds like she knew.“
"You think so?”
“I do,” Veronica nodded. "And from what I can tell, I think she loved you too.“