Author's Note: And it's done! Wow! Thanks to each and every one of my reveiwers and readers. Finally, I've finished my first "big" story on FP. Watch out for more! And do R&R, it really helps! Thanks! :) :) :)

And now, for the final chapter. It may need a bit of editing, but that later. FOr now, enjoy! :)

Lesson Ten: Never Underestimate the Power of a Cupboard

"I'm done" Jack said, before Alex could completely shut the door. "I'm done, Alex, do you hear me? I am DONE!"

He spun on his heel, pacing back and forth, visibly trying to restrain himself.

"Done?" Alex hesitatingly asked.

"Done, with you. I'm finished with this business. I want out. I know I suggested it, so I'm ending it. I can't do this anymore, Lexy!"

"What on Earth are you talking about, Jack?" she asked, taken aback at this sudden outburst.

"I called Chelsea" he said quietly. "She told me about the guy"

The guy? Alex pondered. Chelsea liked a guy? Gerry? And Jack was… affected by this? Jack liked Chelsea?

The suddenly possibility shattered Alex's calm. She began to shake like a leaf. All that hope…

"Wh.. what do you mean, 'the guy'?" she asked, afraid of the answer.

"Don't blame her, Alex. I made her swear not to tell you" Jack sounded so sad. Oh my God, Alex though, my best friend and the love of my life. How typical for her. How ironic. How absolutely fantabuously, agonizingly, gloriously –

"I guess there's no point in it any more. I can't do this. It ends now. I'll make our excuses and leave" Jack said, turning away. "She…" Alex had to call out and ask one last time. "She feels the same way?" Of course she does, Alex chided herself. Every woman within the vicinity seemed to be affected by Jack's charm. For a second, she almost felt sorry for Gerry.

Jack turned around again. "The funny thing is, it sounded like she was hiding something"

Anger flooded Lex's veins. Yeah, Chelsea was hiding something alright! Her implied affection for Alex's brother! The fact that she knew how Alex felt about Jack! There was so much Chelsea was hiding from Jack – but it was not in her place to say anything to Alex tried to calm down.

"I'm sure she does. A lot of Carmichael secrets there. I wouldn't let it get to you, they're not important. At least, not any more" Lex turned away, determined to be the bigger person. Jack and Chelsea, who'd hav thought? Obviously not her. "I wish you two luck" she barely managed and decided she would rather leave than watch Jack's retreating back.

"Wait a second. Alex, wait… LEX! WILL YOU HANG ON A MOMENT?! WHAT'S WITH THE RUSH?"

"Oh, for the love of… Look Jack, this has been very mature and adult-like but can I please have my dignified exit?"

"Dignified exit? You? I think that's my right, Lex!"

"Your right? You're the one running off with the girl at the end"

"Are we on that subject again? Look here, I'm not interested in your sister, Lex, that would be gross on so many levels! I was just trying to calmly break it to her which Carmichael I was really interested in"

"Which Carmichael you were really interested in? Oh, so she told you about Gerry, is it? Listen, take my word for it, I'm not sure Gerry is fully aware of things. I mean, he never intentionally did anything about it. I think you should just leave it in the past and move on"

"Wha…? Wait, what're you talking about?" Jack's mouth hung open loose, and even that expression Alex couldn't help but find attractive.

"Do me a favor though, let me be the one that breaks the news to him? I think I'll handle it better than this"

"Break the news… of this being pretence?" Jack tried to fill in the blanks.

"That of course" Alex winced as the words cut through her.

"Wait, you're telling Gerry about the guy?" Jack asked, as if he finally caught on.

"If you don't want me to name names, I won't. But you have to realize, sooner or later he will get it. It's not like you two will be hiding this forever"

"Yeah, I guess… Wait, what?"

"I'll tell him now, better get it over with"

"Hang on, rewind. Who two?"

"There's no point dragging this out"

"Alex, are you listening to me?"

"I mean, yeah, it's heartbreaking, but don't let that get in the way of your future"

"Who's future?"

"And… if I may, let me be the first to congratulate you"

"Congratulate… Alex, what are you on about?"

"I hope you and Chelsea have a great future together-"


"What? Look here, you. Fiancé or fake one, I don't appreciate being manhandled like that!" she stabbed his chest with her finger, glaring at him, almost with smoking coming out of her nostrils. She'd been on a role with her little monologue and her – Jack-the-great-Hunter – had completely ruined it!

"Alex – I'm in love with you. I've been in love with you since before I can remember. I've been able to hold back – but let me tell you, when you look at me like that, all fiery-dragon- like, with your nose crinkled and your eyes narrowed; and I know you would like nothing better than to beat me to pulp; you just melt my heart into the ball of fluff – and I'm reduced to wanting to hug you and kiss you till you give me a chance at what I rightfully deserve"

"Wha?" Alex blinked once, then again. She could have drooled unattractively without noticing; her brain was too busy processing the words Jack was saying.

"The suspense is killing me! Who's the guy? Who caught your attention where I failed? Is it Roger, from Fishers class? I knew that guy was no good! Or was it Jake, Gerry's friend. Oh yeah, I saw the way you looked at him, laughing and bonding as I try to explain to Gina I was never interested in her…"

"What guy? Aren't you the guy?" Alex replied. "Wait, I'm the guy? You're in love with me?" Jack actually took a step back and thumped his head against a low lying lamp. He rubbed it absently as his face twisted into confusion.

"Yeah, but that's not the point. You're the guy Chelsea likes, right?" Alex dismissed.

"Chelsea likes a guy? I thought she was immune to all romantic feelings"

"Um, no! She's had this crush on Gerry since like, forever!"

"Really? That's good news, Gerry's suddenly realized he might have feelings for her too. He noticed when she suddenly wasn't around anymore"

"How typical of a guy. Don't appreciate something while you have it. Miss it when it's gone"

"Oh sure, you're one to talk! I followed you like a puppy and what do you do? Make kissy faces to my loser elder brother!"


"Oh please, don't pretend you weren't in love with him!"

"I had a crush on him for a week! My obsession with the great Brad Pitt has lasted longer, despite the facial hair and marriage to Angelina Jolie"

"Brad Pitt, seriously?"

"Oh, like you're not secretly lusting for Megan Fox! Don't pretend that's not why you dragged me to see the both the Transformer movies!"

"Oh pssht! I liked the action!"

"Right, Jack. Give it a rest!"

"Is that why you dragged me to see the Mexican? I couldn't figure for the life of my why your eyes were so glued to the screen. Even if I didn't fall asleep through most of the movie, I still couldn't tell you what the heck was going on!"

"I happen to like Julia Roberts!"


"It's true!"

"Come on, admit it Lexy, I know you better than you give me credit for!"

The halt in their conversation made them both realize their confessions.

"You love me?" they asked each other simultaneously.

"You do?" Alex persisted, as Jack remained silent.

A strange warmth spread through her when she saw him nodding his head.

"You?" he hesitantly asked. She broke into a grin and enclosed him in a bear-like vice.

"More than Brad Pitt"

She could feel him grin into her neck.

Half an hour later, they figured they had to sort things out.

The problem was, neither was willing to break away.

They compensated, using briefest of words to get the point across.

"Blondes?" Alex asked, between breaths.

Jack briefly shook his head. "Anyone who didn't resemble you"


Alex laughed and said "Has nothing on you"

"Gerry and Chelsea?" he asked, pulling away for a second.

"Will have to figure things out for themselves" Alex replied, pulling him back.

"Susan, Dolly, Nina, Jessica…"

"Susan is your sister and soon to be mine. The rest were distractions – dinner, coffee and goodnight. Lady, I've not looked at another girl since you moved in on campus!"

"Then why date?"

A minute later, Jack replied "Tried to get over you. Didn't know you were interested"

"Did it work?" she asked a while later.

"What do you think?" he said and didn't let her reply.

They were caught while they tried to discreetly "freshen up".

"There you guys are. MOM! I FOUND THEM!" Marie, Lex's younger sister spotted them at the base of the step and bellowed like a bullfrog.

"Shhh! Marie, please, don't day a word, we just need a minute to straighten up!" Lex shushed the young one.


"Why you little-"


They were surrounded before they could escape. Within a minute, they were seated side-by-side at the table. They hardly got a second to look at each other.

But it didn't matter. They expressed themselves in the brushing of their thighs, when they reached for the same dishes and especially, when their eyes met for the briefest of moments and exuded happiness.

The tinkling of spoons against the glasses became persistent. Toasts were given, the champagne was drunk. Alex and Jack excused themselves shortly after dessert and talked some more. Explanations were given, memories and moments were relived. Then Jack chose to stop their conversation for a while, he blamed her for pouting when he was talking.

By late evening, they'd been interrupted only once, by Elijah, who asked them if they'd seen Susan. They shook their heads and dismissed him, picking up where they left off, when Jack was explaining what really happened back at school.

Finally, when Cynthia Carmichael demanded their presence, they went hand-in-hand, grinning from ear-to-ear.

"Alexandra, I'm concerned about what I'm hearing. A lot of the guests are talking about how you two seemed to be…" the dainty woman stopped, as if looking for words. Alex raised an eyebrow.

"You understand, first comes marriage, then children?" the woman continued. Jack took Alex's hand in his and asked "I want to spend the rest of my life with you. Marry me? Raise a family with me? Be with me forever?" suddenly he was giving her a ring he'd been carrying around and she was crying.

"Yes! To everything!" Alex laughed and hugged him.

Cynthia cleared her throat loudly. "We've been through this, you two. This is your engagement party" she tried to explain.

"Mother" Alex said, not taking her eyes off her fiancé – and how good it felt to say the word!

"Jack and I have decided to get married"

"… I know, Alexandra. I'm worried about the order of events. The children will come later, yes?"

"Mrs. Carmichael, if you want us to have kids…" Jack said, peering to Alex's eyes with a glint in his own – but Alex caught on and grinned widely. She finished for him

"… get us a cupboard"


A/N: Thanks guys, for sticking with me till the end! I'm not very happy with how things ended, so I may change a few things later on, but for now, this is good enough.

Leave me your comments! Thanks!