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28 July 2007 @ 10:38 am
songfic | d:tng | don't take the girl | pt 1/1 | alex/jay | K+  
Title: Don’t Take The Girl
Author: lamaitresse
Part: 1/1
Fandom: Degrassi: The Next Generation
Characters: Alex, Jay
Pairings: Jalex
Summary: AU. Songfic. What could have been.
Disclaimer: I own nothing associated with the Degrassi franchise, nor do I own the song “Don’t Take The Girl” by Tim McGraw. I did take some creative liberties with the lyrics in some places.

Don't Take The Girl

Jay's daddy was taking him fishing
When he was eight years old

Jay had been waiting for this weekend for months. His dad had promised to teach him how to fish this summer. He thought back to the weekend before, when he’d been given a fishing rod and some tackle for his birthday. Now they were loading fishing gear into the back of his dad’s truck. A grin crept up his face, excited that he was getting to hang out with his dad for the day.

A little girl came through the front gate
Holding a fishing pole

Her raven hair shone under the summer sun. She skipped down the driveway in dirty overalls and worn out runners with a huge smile plastered to her grimy face. Jay’s face fell when he caught sight of her.

Jay's dad looked down and smiled
Said, “We can't leave her behind.”

Jay looked up at his dad, an indignant look on his face, as if to say “Why is she here?”

Bruce Hogart looked down at his only son and ruffled his scraggly hair. Despite his own shortcomings as a man and a father, he knew that little girl was not well cared for by her parents. The bruises weren’t from falling at the playground like people were told. Maybe one day Emily would finally get the courage to kick her husband out, but Bruce sometimes wondered if it wasn’t already too late.

“Son, I know you don't want her to go, but
someday you'll change your mind.”

Jay began to protest. No way would he ever change his mind about Alex. She was a girl!

And Jay said,

“Take Jimmy Johnson.
Take Tommy Thompson.
Take my best friend Bo.
Take anybody that you want as long as she don't go.
Take any boy in the world,
Daddy please,
Don't take the girl.”

Bruce just chuckled to himself as he picked Alex up and threw her over his shoulder. She laughed hysterically as he lifted her into the back of his truck, along with his son. He revved the engine sped off towards the highway.

Same old boy, same sweet girl
Ten years down the road

Neither Jay nor Lexi could remember the day his dad had taken them fishing. If they thought about it, they couldn’t remember when they’d crossed the line from thinking the other had cooties to falling in love.

He held her tight and kissed her lips
In front of the picture show

It was a typical Friday night. School was finally done, this time for good, and Alex and Jay were partying at the ravine after a double date at the CineSquare with Sean and Ellie. Jay had heard through the grapevine that Troy was looking for him, something to do with him being pissed off that Jay had shortchanged him in a drug deal. But Jay didn’t care; he could take Troy on no problem. He wasn’t worried.

Stranger came and pulled a gun
Grabbed her by the arm
Said, “If you do as I tell you to,
There won't be any harm.”

Alex, fearless, scared-of-nothing, Alex Núñez, was now afraid she was about to die. Adrenaline caused her heart to pump so hard she thought it would explode in her chest. She almost wished it would. Troy held the gun to her temple and she screwed her eyes shut, the horrified looks of her friends making her sick to her stomach. No way did she want that to be the last thing she ever saw.

And Jay said,

“Take my money.
Take my wallet.
Take my credit cards.
Take the watch that my Grandpa gave me.
Here's the keys to my car.
Mister, give it a whirl,
But please, don't take the girl.”

Never in a million years did Jay think Troy might pull something like this. In an act of desperation he began tossing his wallet and the keys to his treasured orange Civic towards him. Troy dropped Alex to the ground and ran off with Jay’s belongings. Jay fell to his knees beside his girlfriend and held her in his arms as she choked back tears. Nearly losing Alex made him realise he never again wanted to spend another waking moment without her.

Same old boy, same sweet girl
Five years down the road

Despite the ups and downs of the past few years, somehow Alex and Jay had made it work. No violence, no abuse, no welfare cheques. Until nine months ago, their greatest accomplishment had been making sure they were nothing like their parents.

There's gonna be a little one and
She says it's time to go

It had been a difficult pregnancy. Malnutrition in her early years had resulted in Alex’s body not being able to properly sustain a pregnancy, and she was ordered to take bed rest for the majority of it. At her baby shower, she gave Ellie a hug for the gift. When she pulled away, Ellie gasped in horror as she watched Alex clutch her belly and blood begin to soak her clothes.

Doctor says, “The baby's fine,
But you'll have to leave—”

Jay looked down at his wife; her iron grip on his fist was beginning to weaken and the horrible chirping sounds of the medical equipment surround her were beginning to speed up. He intertwined his fingers through hers and used his free hand to brush away the hair that was matted to her face. He bent down and kissed her forehead, whispering, “You’re doing great, Lex. Just hold on for us...”

“—cause his mama's fading fast...”

Jay refused to hear it. He took his son and placed him on Alex’s chest so she could hold him, but she barely had the strength to move her arms. Her breathing was shallower, despite the oxygen, and her usual tanned skin was pale. He began to yell at the doctor to do something for his wife, screaming that his son deserved to have a mother because neither his nor Alex’s had ever really been there for them. Sean grabbed his best friend and dragged him into the waiting room.

And Jay hit his knees
And there he prayed,

“Take the very breath you gave me.
Take the heart from my chest.
I'll gladly take her place if you'll let me
Make this my last request.
Take me out of this world,
God, please, don't take the girl.”

Eight years have now passed since Alex Núñez died giving birth to her only child. Jonathan Núñez-Hogart doesn’t understand why his dad always gets sad on his birthday and never lets him have a party like his other friends. Jay has never told his son why, only that he’ll understand when he’s older. But this year is different. This year, Jay is hunting through his garage, trying to find two old fishing rods.

Johnny's daddy was taking him fishing
When he was eight years old
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