* User Info

Welcome, Guest. Please login or register.
Did you miss your activation email?

* Random Image

Jugheads diner 01-23

Jugheads diner 01-23

* Donate

* Search

* Shoutbox

Refresh History
  • BettyReggie: Good Night Every One
    Yesterday at 10:05:27 PM
  • JonInIowaCity: Good interview, Oldiesmann! :)
    Yesterday at 06:20:45 PM
  • Oldiesmann: The new podcast is up, and I'm the featured guest this week. Check it out! [link]
    Yesterday at 11:22:46 AM
  • archie 45: i think 52or 53
    Yesterday at 10:57:48 AM
  • archie 45: life with archie apeard in world of archie before
    Yesterday at 10:57:11 AM
  • BettyReggie: Jon thanked me for $$$ for the podcast.
    Yesterday at 09:49:20 AM
  • BettyReggie: I'll check later to see if Jon put up the new podcast. I'm going back to bed.
    Yesterday at 07:11:50 AM
  • DeCarlo Rules: @archie 45 - WOA56 is an Annual. As such, they put some special sections in there that don't necessarily appear in WOA on a regular basis, so I wouldn't get my hopes up. The funny thing is that LWA stories tend to appear in all 3 of the Archie digests with a fair amount of frequency, and have never been partitioned by their own title page before. That was one one of the oldest LWA stories in WOA56, so it probably functions almost as a Vault section.
    Yesterday at 01:33:02 AM
  • BettyReggie: Don't forget The RiverDale Podcast tomorrow.
    February 12, 2016, 10:15:03 PM
  • JonInIowaCity: No worries, Spaz
    February 12, 2016, 09:02:50 PM
  • archie 45: so is world of archie 56 the start of the life with archie segment in the book
    February 12, 2016, 08:13:41 PM
  • gillibean: yay! found it thanks harper!
    February 12, 2016, 06:58:17 PM
  • spazaru: I was pretty much kidding Jon!  You didn't give that much away.
    February 12, 2016, 05:30:44 PM
  • BettyReggie: Later
    February 12, 2016, 05:04:26 PM
  • JonInIowaCity: Sorry. If I could delete my commens, I would.
    February 12, 2016, 01:44:06 PM
  • spazaru: These spoilers in the shoutbox are awesome!  LOL
    February 12, 2016, 11:25:16 AM
  • JonInIowaCity: I thought that was Betty on the ship in the pirate outfit?
    February 12, 2016, 09:59:29 AM
  • BettyReggie: Good Night Pals & Gals
    February 11, 2016, 10:17:02 PM
  • BettyReggie: January was actually a pirate on the ship & she appeared in her Time Police uniform.
    February 11, 2016, 10:01:06 PM
  • JonInIowaCity: Plus another Time Police reference!
    February 11, 2016, 08:33:19 PM

Author Topic: The Clown and The Princess  (Read 39061 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

Offline aamrun

« Reply #105 on: January 07, 2012, 01:21:46 PM »
He took off the glasses and squeezed his eyes. They sat like that for some time across the oak panelled desk. The clear sky outside framing them against the sparse room. The man opposite cleared his throat.

"I told you it would come to this."


"He won't listen to anybody, he is being down right unreasonable. Most of the faculty are just keeping up appearances by asking him to reconsider but they would give their right arm to see his back."


"We all know he has been unruly, unconventional, has shown the least regard to rules ever, but he also happens to be the most innovative thinker I at least have seen in my whole career. Sometimes...." he paused "Sometimes he reminds me of you."

If it had been another time, another person, he would have smiled. Joked perhaps, of the myriad similarities and differences.

He kept mum.

"Do you have anything to say ?"

He pondered for some time, cheek cupped in hand "What's left to say ?" he gave a long sigh "Can you please ask him to meet me ?"
Mr. Cooper felt uncomfortable. He was never on the wrong side of the law, not even a single parking ticket all his life. He would boast that he never saw the inside of a court room or for that matter a police station. Today was different.

Today two cars of the Riverdale Police stood infront of his home.

He was more concerned about Alice. She loved her a lot. She was strict often but doted on her little girl. She would make sure that she did every chore and then would make her favourite dish or snack as a treat. She would be firm when it came to her studies or how she kept her room but stood solidly behind her when she had come close to crossing the line at times in her love life. She had never betrayed that trust. The bond ran deep.

Today it seemed that all was in vain. The phones kept buzzing all morning. Polly couldn't believe that Betty would do such a thing, Chick said that he was still gathering clues.

In their cozy home, four cops, two from outside the city tried to explain things.

"Everything will be fine Mrs. Cooper." the cop looked at Mr. Cooper who soothed his wife. Mrs. Cooper's tears still flowed freely "She would never do such a thing. I know her. I know her...Oh God ! She never did anyone wrong !"

"Please Mrs. Cooper." a cop from NY pleaded "We need to understand her behaviour, what she would do. It is vital that you supply this information so we can proceed on this case."

Mrs. Cooper shook her head. She still couldn't believe that Betty would do such a thing, it just wasn't her way, Betty's way, the Cooper way. And yet, and yet it happened.

"It...It all started a few weeks few months back when she started becoming more reserved about.....about herself. Something was troubling her......she never told me....she had never done that....she.....Oh my God !"

And she broke down again.

"Oh my poor baby !" she wailed.
He was packing his bags when word reached him.

"Fox..." Steve was unsure of what to say. He knew Jug loved his girl very much. Maybe this was the right thing to do, but then consider what all he was throwing away. He was throwing away his life. When the news came, it was awful to say the least. A Straight-A distinguished Ivy Leaguer, who knew it would come to that ? Indeed, who knew ?

"Tell me, Steve." Jug just wanted to get away, as quickly as possible. He couldn't believe it was all over. It simply couldn't be. There had to be some hope.

"Mr. Forsythe Jones."

Jug froze, the last time he heard that voice outside of class, in a dorm was 4 years ago. He remembered a middle aged, kind looking man who led him to Aladdin's cave. He turned round. Yes, there he was.

"Dr. Kenneth wishes to speak to you, Mr. Jones." Prof. Johnson said.

"What's there to speak about, Sir ?" Jug asked "I have informed the university and the faculty of my decision. I am dropping out of this course, I am not in a position to continue it."

"I know all about that, Mr. Jones." Prof. Johnson took a deep breath "And I do not think Dr. Kenneth wishes to induce you to stay. He probably wants to meet you one last time before you leave."

Jug thought back to the last time they met, in the park. He never stopped cursing himself for that, at least not till he heard about Betty. It's not that he was afraid that the old man would wreck vengeance upon him, it's just that deep down, Jug was a good man, a decent guy. He was wrong to vent his feelings on someone who had no cause with them, and he knew that.

Jug hung his head, partly from shame, partly from the despair he was in. "I behaved rudely with Dr. Kenneth, Sir." Jug said, his voice on the point of breaking "I don't know what got into me."

"Young man !" Prof. Johnson said "I have known him for 20 years, I can tell you this: He is better than most of us."

Jug squeezed his eyes, trying to stop the welling tears, he nodded. "I.....I will meet him, Prof. Johnson."
"Are you serious, Ron ? Betty would never do such a thing !" Archie was aghast, he wasn't much in touch with Betty any longer and got his updates from Ron.

"It's true, Archie ! I got the latest from Midge, Riverdale and New York Police visited the Coopers and did quite some questioning." Ron was speaking at a feverish pace, deep down she was scared for her best friend. "Oh Archie ! What shall we do ? I will never forgive myself !" she burst into tears. Despite all the meanness she showed towards Betty, she would never throw her in harm's way.

"Ron...Ron, Please calm down ! Everything will be fine ! I promise !" Archie tried to console her over the phone. "Listen, does he know ? Does Jug know about this ?"

"I ... I don't know. Chick and Polly do, Chick is furious, he is trying to convince his bosses to launch a full scale investigation, but...." Ron shook her head, tears streaming down her face.

"It's not that easy, Ron." Archie clutched his hair "It's not like our school days, this is the Government." Archie closed his eyes, trying to think, trying to make out what Jug would do in such a situation.

"Holy Shit !" Archie swore.

"Archie ?" Ron was shocked.

"Ron, I am sorry. Look, I have to cut the call. I have to call Jug right now." Archie told her and cut the call.
It wasn't the park this time, it was the room again, where they first met. No one smiled this time, the graveness which hung over the matter made the bright sunny day pale by it's melancholy. It didn't help that the old man's favourite colour was black.

They sat in silence for some time, facing each other but not looking. Jug broke the silence first "I guess you know then."

The old man nodded "I know that you want to drop out and leave the university. What I do not know..." he said "is why."

Jug looked into his eyes for some time, eyes which never felt love for any living being, at least that's what the world thought. "You would not understand." Jug shook his head.

"I can try." The old man offered "Mr. Jones, I am not trying to stop you from leaving, you may recall that I opined much earlier that there may be formidable difficulties in your education." Jug was stunned, yes he did ! He knew ! He knew all along ! "This is that period, what I wish to know Mr. Jones is why do you wish to leave."

More silence, Jug spoke after some time "Couldn't you deduce that ?"

"I cannot deduce from nothing, Mr. Jones." The old man said "Deduction or Induction of facts must be based on one or more facts. Their truth or falsity is not an issue in the process but if they are fabricated out of thin air, they are useless."

Always that language, there were times when Jug asked him to talk in English, a request the old man would comply with a smile or a nod but this day was not a day for humour.

"She's gone." Jug sighed.

"Maybe if you elaborate." The old man crossed his fingers. "I am listening."
"Come on ! Come on ! Pick up the damn phone !" Archie swore " Jug never ignored his calls, he feared the worst. Going by how much Jug loved her, he was really taking this plunge.

Archie got through to Souphead "Soupie ! Have you talked with Jug recently, can you get through to him ?"

"No, Arch." Souphead was downcast as well "Aunt Gladys is cursing herself for telling Jug about Betty. He called the Coopers to be sure of the news, he never called back since. He's not even picking up calls."

"How are the Coopers ? Any idea ?"

"Mrs. Cooper is pretty hard up." Souphead said "The Meds had to give her a shot so she could go to sleep. She kept mumbling Betty's name in her sleep. It's that bad, Archie !" Souphead was near breaking as he remembered Betty's and Mrs. Cooper's myriad kindnesses. "It's that bad !"
Jug had finished his story and his explaining 10 minutes ago, they sat in silence since then, a thousand thoughts going on in his mind.

"I am sorry for everything." The old man said, his voice carrying a slight hint of compassion "I hope you are successful in your endeavours."

"You...You are letting me go then ?" Jug asked.

"I never held you back. Mr. Jones, there are some things in life more important than all the knowledge which has to be had. You are fortunate that you are loved and can love. It is much better than a lifetime of solitude with only theorems for company."

"I...I am sorry for my actions and words, Dr. Kenneth, I was really ungrateful." Jug said.

"No offence done, none taken." the old man said "It will be a hard journey, Mr. Jones. I wish you all the best."

"Thank You, Sir."

The silence was getting awkward, and Jug started to get up. "I ... I should be going now."

"I would like you to have this." The old man opened a drawer and took out a small packet. "I wish I could put it on a CD, but I am old fashioned." he gave a small smile "Whenever you have time, Mr. Jones."

"Thank You, Sir" Jug said, unsure of the packet's contents.

Jug was at the door when he called after him.

"Yes Sir ?" Jug asked.

"If I am not intruding, may I know the young lady's name ?" the old man asked.

"Betty." A lump formed in Jug's throat "Betty Cooper."

"A beautiful name." The old man nodded "I would like to meet her when she is back."

Jug's eyes lit up "You mean ! You mean she is alive ! She can be found !"

The old man smiled "Have faith, Mr. Jones. Have faith."
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------A tall lean figure clad in shapeless clothes scanned the bus tables, searching for a bus far, far away.

A one way ride to someplace nobody knew her, nobody would come looking for her. It was best that way, she would bring disgrace to anyone she would associate herself with.

Hours later, she was on a bus, careful that no one even noticed her golden hair and blue eyes.

Offline Zach Ziggster

Re: The Clown and The Princess
« Reply #106 on: January 07, 2012, 04:31:55 PM »
What can I say?  You are a very talented writer.   :)

I have so many Archies, I've lost count!  :D

Offline jugheadfan1

Re: The Clown and The Princess
« Reply #107 on: January 07, 2012, 05:17:32 PM »
i agree with Zach 100% .amazing.

Offline aamrun

Re: The Clown and The Princess
« Reply #108 on: January 08, 2012, 12:40:19 AM »
Thank You ! Thank You ! You are too kind ! :)

Offline Zach Ziggster

Re: The Clown and The Princess
« Reply #109 on: January 08, 2012, 02:07:02 PM »
Thank You ! Thank You ! You are too kind ! :)

You're extremely welcome.   :)

I have so many Archies, I've lost count!  :D

Offline aamrun

Re: The Clown and The Princess
« Reply #110 on: February 01, 2012, 01:25:54 PM »
More than 3 weeks, but at least an update !

Offline aamrun

What is Love ?
« Reply #111 on: February 01, 2012, 01:26:33 PM »
"It's your fault ! It's all your fault !"

"How can you say that to me ? What did I do wrong ? Tell me, Forsythe ! What did I do wrong ?"

Upstairs, Jellybean listened with her ear to the floor.

"What did you do wrong ? After everything you still ask me what did you do wrong ?" Mr. Jones fumed, his eyes bloodshot with rage. "I will tell you bloody hell what you did wrong ! The first man in the family to go to college ! One of the best colleges on Earth ! A freaking genius even before he is 20 and you had to drag him out !" he screamed "That Gladys !" he stabbed his finger at her "Is what you did wrong !"

"How could you say that to me ! After all these years ! For heaven's sake, he has every right to know ! They have been friends since kindergarten, they love each other, how on Earth couldn't he find out ?" Mrs. Jones shouted, the strain of arguing with her husband on a thing like this welled up her eyes. She sobbed and hiccupped.

"Friends ! Love ! Ha ! Con someone else with that !" Mr. Jones stomped on the floor "She loved that Andrews boy, she only used my son to get back at him, she was using him all along !"

Upstairs, Jellybean gasped in horror. No, she would never do a thing like that, never.

Downstairs, Mrs. Jones looked at Mr. Jones wide eyed in disbelief "Used....Used him ....." she stammered "How can you say that thing about her ? She is the nicest girl that ever has been and she loves him with all her heart !"

"Oh really !" Mr. Jones sneered "Well, if she did love him, why didn't she stay in touch ? If she did love him, why didn't she tell him that she was getting screwed big time by her college ? If ...." he whirled round at his wife, anger in his eyes "If she did love him, why did she run away like that ?"

Mrs. Jones gulped, all these things were difficult to explain, the only one who could was missing. "Why ...." she faltered "Why do you think she loved our son then ?"

"Our son !" Mr. Jones snorted "Yeah right, our son ! Our son with the appetite of a whale and the brains of Einstein ! Well, I will tell you why woman ! You want to know why ? It's because why every woman needs a man in the first place, a successful man, a smart man, a man who can take care of her credit cards and get her seen in high society, a man who is too busy working his ass off so that she can romp around with every stud behind his back !"

"Forsythe Pendleton Jones !" Mrs. Jones shouted at the top of her lungs "How dare you ! How dare you say those things ! Shame on you ! So that's what you really are ! A scumbag who sees every woman as a swindler ! You, the father of a girl ! God Almighty ! Is this how low you could fall ?"

"Low !" Mr. Jones struck back "I only have my son's best in my heart, Gladys Forsythia Jones ! It is women like Elizabeth Ann Cooper who destroy the lives of simple and good men like our son and their families !"

Upstairs, tears flowed down Jellybean's eyes forming a small puddle near the tip of her nose.

"That does it !" Mrs. Jones trembled "All these days we fought over how to make ends meet, I always stood by you because we were in this together, but if that's how you see it, Mr. Jones !" she squared her shoulders "I can't live with you anymore ! I want a divorce !"

"Excellent ! When are you leaving ?"

That was the last straw, tears flowing freely down her face, she rushed upstairs.

"Just don't expect even a cent in alimony !" Mr. Jones shouted up the stairs, "You know what's in the bank !"
His eyes reminded him of her.

He had been here for over an hour, they mostly sat in silence for the better part. The father did not know what to ask, the lover did not know what to say.

Jug often thought of the day when he would have to talk with Betty's parents about the two of them. Marriage was scary at first, but the more sure he grew of her love, the more he wanted to be with her always. What would he say to him ? How could he ask her hand in marriage with a straight face ? Mr. Cooper knew Jug even before he was in school, he was like a father to him, just what would he say ?

Mr. Cooper often thought of the day he and Jug would have a talk about Betty. She was his youngest child and being a girl made her all the more special. She would marry none but the best with a wedding fit for a queen. He even went to the extent of poring over the details of William and Kate's marriage, trying to figure out how he could add that royal touch within his limited means. He would tell Jug to take good care of her, to be more responsible, to be considerate, He had even begun practising the lecture.

Jug cleared his throat "Mr. Cooper"

Mr. Cooper was looking at the trees outside, trying to take his mind off the events of the last two weeks. "Mr. Cooper !"

"Eh !" Mr. Cooper came out of his reverie, he tried to focus his eyes on Jug "Sorry, Jug. You were saying..."

"How is Mrs. Cooper ?" Jug asked.

"Oh..." Mr. Cooper waved his hand, it was the most common question he faced now "Oh, she had some shots, sleeps most of the time, and when she is awake, keeps looking at Betty's pictures."

"Can I see her, Mr. Cooper ?"

"Why ?" Mr. Cooper's face took on an irate look, but he switched back "I mean what good can it do, Jughead ? She has had a bad shock. Even I don't talk about Betty with her anymore, not in her condition."

"Please, Mr. Cooper."

"No Jug." Mr. Cooper stood up, wishing the conversation would end soon "It won't do her any good. I am sorry, Jug but I would appreciate if you leave us in peace."

Those words cut to the quick. Jug gritted his teeth, maybe the Coopers blamed him for all that happened to Betty, not that he could blame them. They were loving parents and she was a good girl.

The best girl.

Jug pulled himself up, his otherwise lanky self felt like a ton to him now. Mr. Cooper was at the door now, Jug walked up to the door, his head bowed.

Never had he been shown the door like this, not even by Mr. Lodge. He stopped for some time at the doorstep.

"I am sorry, Mr. Cooper." Jug whispered.

"They all say that." Mr. Cooper said in a tired voice.

He walked out of the house in tears.
It was a new smell he walked into his home that day, not that he was a stranger to it, but never in this house, never in his home.


Mr. Jones was on the living room couch swigging from a whisky bottle. "Romeo's home !" he bellowed just as Jug walked in.

Jug stared at him, what had gotten into him ? He knew his Dad was hard up again and the fact that gave up college to look for Betty didn't go well with him, but does he have to do this ?

"Did you find Juliet ?" Mr. Jones sneered "Next time take along your banjo, you can serenade for her and people will throw you some coins, the mall is a great place !"

"Dad, why are you drinking in the house ?"

"Because I am in love !" Mr. Jones threw out his arms "I am in love with Betty Cooper ! God ! Son, she is one hot dish ! You landed the big one there ! Yes Sir !" he winked at his son "Can't wait for her to sashay around our kitchen !" he licked his lips.

"Dad ! What the hell are you talking about ? I love Betty ! She is like a daughter to you ! Jelly calls her Sister ! How could you say such things !"

"Hey ! Nothing wrong in looking out for oneself !" Mr. Jones took another swig "and anyways, seems like she doesn't care for the college types after all ! Showed her true colours, she did ! He he !"

"Dad !" Jug clenched his fists, he prayed that his Mom and Jelly were out.

"Oh, look at lover boy !" Mr. Jones mocked "You can hit your old man for that girl huh ?" He stood up and came close to Jug, his breath reeking of whisky "Come on, Tiger ! Take your best shot."

Jug breathed deeply, reminding himself that his father was just mad at him for throwing away Stanford. "I don't think this is the best time to talk, Dad." he tore himself off to go to his room.

"Electricity is really expensive these days !" Mr. Jones shouted "You know, with you gone, I could pay the bill with spare change !"

Jug reached the stairs.

"Not to talk about food ! God ! To imagine that I blew my whole pay check just to feed you for one day !"

Jug stopped on the stairs, his grip on the bannister hardening each second.

"Shucks, I thought I would finally save something for that Malibu trip with you off our backs !" Mr. Jones grinned.

Jug closed his eyes, gulped. "Don't worry Dad !" he started up the stairs "I won't be staying for dinner."
She stood in the doorway watching him pack. When he left for college, she was busy in the kitchen making his favourite dishes for the farewell lunch.

Now, farewell seemed Farewell, Forever.

"Where will you go ?" she asked.

"Wherever she may have gone." Jug answered "I have some ideas, have to check all the cases."



She didn't say anything more, he stopped packing and looked back at her.

"If I had not told you about Betty, what would you have done ?"

Jug looked at her for some time and then looked away "Guess it would have taken some more time, that's all !" Jug shrugged "Polly, Chick, our gang.....someone would ask me sometime about her and then it would all come out." he sighed "You did the right thing, Mom. It's not that late. I can try and catch up with her."

Mrs. Jones drew a long breath "Do you think dropping out of college for her was a good idea ?"

Jug stopped packing again, his thoughts raced back to all those long nights of hard work, the torture of applying to colleges, the thrill of being accepted, the joy of being in Stanford, the awe and amazement he felt for the old man.

And then he thought of her, her smile. That innocent smile with her front teeth just showing, those blue eyes............and nothing else mattered any more.

"She was the only good idea I ever had, Mom." Jug said "She was the best thing which ever happened to me."

Jellybean stole into his room as they were talking, she walked upto Jug and clutched his jeans. Jug looked down at her.

"Tell Betty that I really miss her and I am mad she went away without telling me !" Jelly said trying to sound bossy.

Jug forced a smile and squeezed her cheek.
He didn't stay for dinner, he left even when the sun had not set. His mother and sister saw him off, his father raved on in the house warning him never to show his sorry face again.

It was then that they arrived.

She didn't seem to have aged a single day. Her hair was still silvery white, not a single new wrinkle on her face. He on the other hand walked with a cane now, his weight didn't help his arthritis.

"Ms. Grundy ! Mr. Weatherbee !" Jug was surprised.

"We heard !" Ms. Grundy nodded. "Young man !" Mr. Weatherbee shook his head "What do you possibly hope to do ?"

"To try my best, Sir." Jug said "It's the least I can do."

"Jughead..." Ms. Grundy said "I thought you were selfish, self centered, lazy, greedy and all sorts of things at school, but....." she shook her head, tears in her eyes "I was wrong, Thank Heavens, I was wrong !"

He nodded, Mr. Weatherbee patted his shoulder as he stepped into his car.

"Find her, please !" Ms. Grundy told him "She is a daughter to me."

"I will, Ms. Grundy. I promise."

And he left a home which was breaking apart.

Offline Zach Ziggster

Re: The Clown and The Princess
« Reply #112 on: February 01, 2012, 06:40:52 PM »
Oh, wow.   :o
That's all can say.  And "Keep up the great work!"   ;)

I have so many Archies, I've lost count!  :D

Offline aamrun

Re: The Clown and The Princess
« Reply #113 on: February 02, 2012, 12:18:12 AM »
Yeah, that's called reality :)

Offline jugheadfan1

Re: The Clown and The Princess
« Reply #114 on: February 02, 2012, 07:43:16 PM »

Offline aamrun

Re: The Clown and The Princess
« Reply #115 on: February 20, 2012, 01:59:36 AM »
This one's quite late and patchy :P

Offline aamrun

The Search
« Reply #116 on: February 20, 2012, 01:59:57 AM »
It's funny how easy they make it look in the movies. You run away from home, scout for a job, you get a job, make ends meet, prince in shining armour comes looking for you, visits the place you are working in, you recognise each other, balloons and hearts go off, you rejoice and live happilly ever after.

If it only were the movies.

It wasn't easy finding a job, she had to choose the worst time ever to run away. No jobs, definitely none for a young woman too reluctant to share her details and go down the wrong way. Yet she did get one in the end. She found herself scrubbing the floors of a mall in some one road town. It was even smaller than Riverdale.

"Make sure you get all the stains out !"

That was her gruffy boss, a huge 50-something with loud makeup, perhaps it was a saving grace that she was a woman who did not care too much for a young woman who could have been Miss Universe if she put her heart into it. At least she did not have to deal with snide remarks. That was left for all the mall rats who skipped school and lazed around in the mall all day.

It could turn nasty someday, really nasty.
He probably felt like some old western hero, riding off into the sunset. It didn't last for long, apart from the halts he had to make for gas and to pick up supplies, and the numerous detours he took on hunches, it was straight south. If he kept it up for probably another month, he would be in every town and village till the Keys. He had to be careful with the money, he had some kept away from his scholarship money, spending it on gas, car jobs now and then and his broadband. He hardly ate, growing more and more gaunt everyday. He saved by sleeping in the car, at least saves on the motel bills, he reasoned.

"Nopes, never saw her."

"That your girl ?"

"Who's she ?"

"I think I saw someone like that........"

The last were the worst, false hopes, sudden bursts of optimism, all frittered away when he tried to follow the leads, all of them drew a blank.

Maybe the TV and the net would have better luck.

They broadcast her pics and short videos when she was gone for a month. People called in from all over the country and Canada too, no luck still. It was as if she had vanished.

He still didn't give up hope.
Reggie couldn't stop patting himself on the back when it all started. Serves her right, Miss Goody Two Shoes. He was in splits when he heard how Jug and his dad practically fought over Betty and that Mr. and Mrs. Jones had already filed for divorce. Serves them right for screwing up my life !

Mrs. Cooper's near depression wasn't a thing to be laughed at though, he didn't like to see Betty cry really. And the fact that Betty was missing now for well over two months wasn't helping matters either. After all, he didn't go through all this just to get back at them, he wanted to win back what was rightfully his, Betty as his own.

And that's why he wanted to track her down too.

"I need the best pros on this job ! I don't care who you get as long as they can ferret her out !" Reggie barked into the intercom while lunching.

"Yes Sir !" His secretary assured him and then got dutifully down to her job, making calls, pulling up the best trackers in the business, negotiating rates, setting deadlines.

Reggie wanted to find Betty too, it's just that Jug did it while living off Dollar Store stuff while Reggie supped on caviar.
Chick Cooper hated himself, today he wished he was his own boss. There was no one, practically no one in the world the agency couldn't track down in a matter of days. He himself homed in on some of the most wanted desperadoes internationally. And yet, here he was, elder brother of a woman, missing for two months now with the police unable to make any headway on her case. There was no way the CIA would take up her case, unless it concerned homeland security or Al-Qaeda or something like that.

He had the tools, the resources, all at his hands and there he was unable to use it for something he loved more than anything else in this world : his kid sister.
Polly Cooper didn't leave any stone unturned, she buzzed all her contacts, requesting, pleading with them to bring out the journalistic equivalent of an all points bulletin. People sympathised with her, offerred to hack into police systems to find out what they were really upto, suggesting leads and possible searches.

The fact that Polly was a journalist with more than 10 years behind her didn't help matters sometimes. She had seen all types, almost, and it chilled her to the bone that some of the most likeliest of cases could have happenned to her sister.

Body at the bottom of a lake ? Chopped up and fed to dogs or pigs ? Walled into a new basement ?

The possibilities were limitless.
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------Riverdale is a small city, it's not that it didn't have it's share of crises but they were few and far in between. The Riverdale police had to deal with at most one incident a month, and that too if they were lucky. Traffic violations were the most common but then no one or nothing is perfect.

That's why the Jones' affair was big news. Their friends asked them to work it out. The Coopers had withdrawn from almost everything after Betty, they were visited by friends now and then. Mrs. Andrews and Mrs. Jones would visit her often, they did all they could to comfort her and lift her spirits.

But then it wasn't their children who had run away.
"You never told me how you felt."

"Told you about what ?" the old man asked.

"When he left, why didn't you stop him ?"

The old man shrugged his shoulders "It was his decision. He knew what he was doing."

"Are you angry ?"

"No, Prof. Johnson." the old man said "He only has to open the packet."

"Packet ?"
Sabrina dropped out of everyone's radar after her curiosities about the old man were satiated. She was convinced now that he did not possess any magic, yet had gifts which great wizards were afraid of.It was natural therefore that she would not know of Betty's predicament.

Fair weather friends ?
Betty found shelter in a run down apartment, no heating, lousy lighting, toilets, bedbugs, the works. She got it cheap, plus the door at least closed tight. She had hardly much to call her own, her clothes, some diaries and a few pens. She left everything else, including her laptop at college. They found their way to the police evidence store and would be released to the Coopers in due course.

Not that it would be a great comfort for them.
Chick made his decision, he couldn't do anything on his own, nor with the agency;s resources. Still he had his contacts, his own "Lone Gunmen". These were a rag tag band of social outcasts who operated in the gray area between legal and illegal activities. Hacking, pushing drugs, pimps, stuff like that. They usually had contacts all over the world, maybe they could help.

And so it was that he found himself outside a steel door in an alley somewhere in Portland. He made a call.

"You there, Ringo ?"

"What do you want ?" A gruff voice asked.

"I need your help."

"Why is it only when you need me that you turn up ?"

"Ringo, this is important." Chick said patiently.

The voice was silent, after some time it said "Come in."

Chick pushed the door and went in, he climbed down into a basement and went past rows after rows of crates stacked high, in a dingy corner, a man bent over double before two screens typed away like crazy.

"Good Morning, Ringo." Chick said.

A gun clicked behind Chick, "Don't move." a thin voice said "You may be CIA but I am ex-Seal."

"It's ok, Joe." Ringo said, his eyes never off from the screens, "He is good."
Many people told him that it was madness to throw away the opportunity of a lifetime over a lost love. Especially when it was his first. Don't worry, they said, you will get more. Many more.

Perhaps that's what he believed once too, that love is a commodity which can be purchased like everything else. That love for other people was like food to him, an essential commoditty which they could not do without. That was before he fell in love himself.

When did exactly he fall in love ? Looking back now, it's as if he was always in love, love at first sight, they say. His obsession with food an attempt to cloak his feelings for her. Perhaps it was the day she first cooked for him, maybe the day she first stood up for him, maybe the day he first held her in his arms, it was unintentional, she slipped thanks to really slippery shoes.

Or maybe it was the day he first saw her when the Coopers moved into Wittenburg Drive, all those years ago.

Maybe she can tell him, if he ever finds her that is.
The anaemic eyes were wide in wonder at Chick, even long after he finished his story. Chick was alert, he had to be. Ringo wasn't always the brightest when it came to society and Joe behind his back with the sub machine gun didn't make him exactly comfortable. Still, he was a trained and field-hardened CIA agent, he had seen worse.

"Ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha !"

Everything except that !

The outburst of mirth was so sudden that it threw Chick into a moment of panic, just a moment thankfully, it didn't affect jow but his eyes were on Chick and it interpreted the slight jerk in Chick's body as an offensive move, his fingers tensed on the trigger.

"Ho, ho-ho, ho-ho-ho ! You are a comedian ! A regular one, Agent Cooper !" Ringo said, turning back to face his screen.

"So you can't help me ?" Chick asked.

"Hmmm....dee...dee...daa" Ringo hummed "Sorry, Agent Cooper. Helping you for wanted criminals is one thing, this is personal, I don't do personal."

Chick expected as much, he knew bargaining with Ringo would be futile and dangerous. If he did inform the agency or DHS that he was contacted by Chick to ferret out his kid sister, they would have his head. The System was aware of wildcards like Joe and Ringo. They were tolerated because of the benefits they provided from time to time in terms of 'quasi-legal' covert operations.

"Well then, thanks for listenning, Ringo." Chick got up and turned around to leave.

"Agent Cooper !" Ringo called, Chick stopped in his tracks.

"You really love your baby sister, don't you, Agent Cooper ?" Ringo asked, his fingers flying away on the keyboards.

"Of course, Ringo." Chick answered, wondering where this was heading.

Ringo licked his lips "We are not exactly friends, Agent Cooper, but I understand how it feels to lose a member of the family." he paused, banged the enter key and turned around "I think I know someone whom you have met, who can help."

Chick read the letters on the screen, his eyes wide in surprise.

Offline Zach Ziggster

Re: The Clown and The Princess
« Reply #117 on: February 20, 2012, 12:21:31 PM »
I think I see where this is going!  (Well, Chick's side, at least.)   :D

Outstanding work!  I can't wait for the next chapter.   :)

I have so many Archies, I've lost count!  :D

Offline aamrun

Re: The Clown and The Princess
« Reply #118 on: February 21, 2012, 01:27:02 AM »
I think I see where this is going!  (Well, Chick's side, at least.)   :D

Outstanding work!  I can't wait for the next chapter.   :)

Glad that you do, Zach  ;)

I always thought that I was getting too nerdy and technical in this fic, however, I am going through Steig Larrson's Millenium trilogy right now. They are geeky as hell and still bestsellers.

So, I can rest easy :)

Offline Zach Ziggster

Re: The Clown and The Princess
« Reply #119 on: February 21, 2012, 10:26:23 AM »
I think I see where this is going!  (Well, Chick's side, at least.)   :D

Outstanding work!  I can't wait for the next chapter.   :)

Glad that you do, Zach  ;)

I always thought that I was getting too nerdy and technical in this fic, however, I am going through Steig Larrson's Millenium trilogy right now. They are geeky as hell and still bestsellers.

So, I can rest easy :)

I actually really like stories that are very technically and "nerdy."  I'm not completely sure why; but for me, it seems to add more realism.

I have so many Archies, I've lost count!  :D


Related Topics

  Subject / Started by Replies Last post
126 Replies
Last post September 10, 2012, 06:22:22 PM
by aamrun
0 Replies
Last post July 26, 2011, 12:48:10 PM
by Oldiesmann
7 Replies
Last post August 14, 2012, 05:37:52 PM
by Zach Ziggster

The Archie character names and likenesses are covered by the registered trademarks/copyrights of Archie Comic Publications, Inc. and are used with permission by this site. The Official Archie Comics website can be visited at
Live Support