A/N: Hey everyone! This is my first time in quite a while that I’m writing fanfics again, so why not start again with the wonderful Sweet Pea? Some background: you’re Archie’s older sibling (by one year) and had been living with your mom/Mary, but you’ve decided to return to Riverdale after the Black Hood shot Fred/your dad.
Wow, I’m nervous, and I’m sorry if it’s rough (legit wrote this in 30-40 min) but be sure to let me know if I should continue!!!
Riverdale had definitely changed since you last lived here.
Or it could’ve been that you changed: you were older and less naive, but certainly not smarter.
You immediately jumped at the sound of your brother’s voice and tore your eyes away from the kitchen window, feeling as if you had just emerged from a deep sleep. After a quick shake of the head, you looked at your brother. “Sorry, what?”
He only sighed. “I had asked if you were going upstairs to help mom with dad, or if you wanted to stay down here with me.”
After saying this, he sat on top of a tiny, wooden shelf that he must have emptied before. You noticed how the blood-stains on his bandaged hands eerily matched the color of his hair, and you couldn’t help but slightly wince at how his hands tightened around the baseball bat he held. The last time he had played baseball was easily ten years ago.
How things have changed.
You scratched the back of your head before letting out a yawn that was definitely fake. “Archie, I normally would but I’m totally beat. I’m gonna head upstairs and stay with dad for a few before heading to bed.”
Archie shrugged lazily. “Yeah, I understand. Good night.”
You felt bad for leaving him by himself, but you felt overwhelmed by everything that was happening and couldn’t ask how he was doing if you didn’t know how you were feeling yourself. At his words you gave an awkward lopsided smile and went upstairs, trying to remember the layout of the second floor that you’d once lived in. With a quick scan, you found your parent’s bedroom and knocked softly before entering.
“Hey y/n,” she whispered, a small smile appearing on her face. She remained seated on a stool, right next to the bed where dad was sleeping peacefully. “Is there something wrong?”
“I just wanted to talk to you, that’s all.”
She understood by what you meant, and quietly got up before leading you outside the room and shutting the door. With her brown eyes intensely fixated on you, she stated, “You’re confused.”
“No,” you said, making sure to keep your voice to a whisper so Archie could not hear. “Not confused, just….I’m just surprised, mostly. Why would this happen in Riverdale? And why dad?”
She placed a hand on your shoulder, a soft sigh escaping her lips. “I have no clue. I’m sure Sheriff Keller will find out soon, or at least I hope so. I’m just worried about Archie.”
“Me too! It’s slightly scaring me. He’s in no way stable to take care of dad right now.”
“Which is why we’re here to––”
“Yeah, but we’re leaving in a week! That’s not enough time!”
Another sigh, this time more exasperated. “Well, y/n, what do you want me to do? I can’t just drop my case and you can’t miss any more school, especially since it’s your junior year and––”
“Then let me stay here. With them.”
You both blinked at what you said, both equally as shocked. All your mind could visualize at that moment was Archie swinging that bat, hurting someone. Hurting himself. He needed someone to watch over him, to make sure that he wouldn’t fall into the grave that he was currently digging. Suddenly, you felt the need to protect him.
And that’s what you decided to do.
Which explains why you’re currently on your way to the most dangerous part of Riverdale, your hands gripping the steering wheel of your dad’s truck so tightly that your knuckles are paper white. It’s incredible how after crossing a certain street the whole atmosphere changes, or at least the atmosphere you’re perceiving. The massive colonial houses and sparkling BMWs had turned to tiny-looking sheds and motorcycles, along with the addition of graffiti and litter marring this part of Riverdale.
As you enter the parking lot of Southside High school, your mind begins to panic. What the hell are you thinking y/n?You’re going to get yourself killed!
At the same time, you realize that there is no other option. After Betty had given you a crash course on everything that had happened in the last two years during your time in Chicago with mom, you saw how divided the town currently is. Even the friend group that supposedly made everyone jealous was struggling: Betty seems to be facing her own demons and newbie Veronica (or rather, the old newbie, since you just arrived) is supporting Archie’s weird behavior. Dad continues to be his clueless self, so there’s no help with that. That only leaves Jughead, who now resides on the side of town your parents always forbade you from crossing.
Too late for that now, you bitterly remark.
You glance at the digital clock in your car. 12:30 on the dot. You had planned on visiting Jughead’s trailer after school, but he never answered your numerous texts. Even if you had waited till then, Archie would’ve asked of your plans and everything would be foiled. Your dad usually takes his pain meds at this time and gets knocked out, so he certainly wouldn’t be a problem. Besides, you’re only missing your lunch and homeroom block, so 12:30 is the perfect time.
With a deep and composed breath, you step out of the truck, feeling relieved that it’s not some convertible but instead just as battered as the other cars scattered throughout the lot. Across the lot and past the school’s perimeter fence you spot different groups of teens your age, and if you squint just enough you notice the most important person on your agenda. They must be having lunch, too. Perfect.
The moment you open the gate you feel numerous hungry pairs of eyes on you. However, with clenched fists and a straight face, you continue walking to your destination, to the boy adorning his weird beanie. His back is faced towards you, as he seems to be talking to a very tall guy and a girl with pinkish hair. When you’re less than a foot away and he still hasn’t noticed, you clear your throat, your arms bent and right hip slightly cocked.
Still nothing. His new friends definitely take note of you but don’t say anything, especially the tall dark-haired one who merely raises an eyebrow at your presence.
“Jughead.” Your tone is clearly annoyed, but you’ve never been good at hiding such things.
Slowly, the said boy begins to turn around, and his eyes widen as soon as he sees you. “Y/n! What are you doing here?”
“Well, considering you haven’t been answering any of my texts I thought I should take drastic measures.”
Jughead looks slightly panicked, as his eyes flit back and forth between you and the others. Suddenly, his blue eyes then remained fixed on you, a cold icy stare that you had never seen before on him: “Y/n, you really need to leave. I’ll talk to you soon but not now. Just go back to the Northside, please.”
“The Northside?” booms the tall one, a contemptuous sneer added to the end of his question. He glares at you as he inches closer and closer to you, his towering height adding to his intimidation. When Jughead tries to stop him, he simply shoves him, as if to say No, let me do my thing. Your worst fears just came true.