The One After Las-Vegas
by Annette L. of Minnesota, USA

It is the morning after Chandler and Monica see Ross and Rachel burst out of the wedding chapel in Las Vegas. Chandler and Monica are sitting on the bed in their hotel room, discussing the events of last night...

Chandler: I still want to marry you, Monica. So much.

Monica: I know you do, sweetie, but after what I saw last night, I'm not sure about this anymore. Do you think we're rushing?

Chandler: No, I think Ross and Rachel were rushing. They were drunk. We, on the other hand, were very sober. We knew what we were doing, and neither of us had a second thought until we saw them come bursting out of those doors.

Monica: I'm worried about them. Do you think they're up yet?

Ross's hotel room. He and Rachel are still sleeping. Rachel goes to turn over and wakes up instantly, feeling someone next to her in the bed. Her eyes widen when she realizes it's Ross. She sits abruptly and looks around the room, pulling a T-shirt over her head. Trying to process what had happened between them, she faintly remembers a chapel, and looks down at her hand to find a wedding ring on her finger. She jumps up, startling Ross out of his slumber.

Ross: Who's there?

Rachel: Ross! Ross! Get up! We have a major problem here!

He sits up slowly, still hung-over.

Ross: You're talking too loud. Quiet down....(He starts to lay down, but she pulls him back up)

Rachel: Ross! Come on! Do you remember what went on last night?

He looks up groggily at her face and grins.

Ross: I colored on your face. Ha ha...

Rachel holds up her left hand, displaying the ring. He stares at it for a moment, then his eyes widen.

Ross: Hey, wait a second! What are you doing in my room? Why are you wearing my shirt, Rachel? It's too bright! I need an aspirin!

Rachel: There's no time for that! Ross, look at your hand! What do you see?

Ross: Fingers...

Rachel: Your LEFT hand!!!

Ross: A ring?!

Rachel holds up her hand again.

Rachel: I have one too.....

Ross: You have one...too? That means.....(sits up abruptly) OH MY GOD!!

Opening theme song/credits and commercials.....Then returns to Chandler and Monica's room. They are packing to go home.

Chandler: Are you sure you wanna wait?

Monica: I think it's best if we do. There's going to be enough stress with Ross and Rachel trying to annul their marriage.

Chandler: You actually think they'll get an annulment?

Monica: Well, yeah. What else can they do?

Chandler: Well, stay married. Even though they have had their fights and their ugly break-ups, they keep falling for one another. Maybe this time, they'll decide to stay together.

Ross's hotel room. He is pacing frantically, and Rachel is sitting on the bed, watching him pace.

Ross: What are we gonna do? How did this happen?

Rachel: We got drunk. What do you think happens when people get drunk in the wedding capitol of the world?

He ignores her comment, and continues his pacing.

Ross: Okay, this is fixable if we act fast. I say, we get back to New York, find a lawyer, and get this thing annulled.

Rachel looks up at him tenderly. Her feelings for him are returning.

Rachel: You really want to get an annulment?

Ross: We were drunk. We didn't mean it. End of story. I mean, what else are we supposed to do, Rach?

Their eyes meet, and he instantly can read her thoughts. Rachel looks away after a moment and stands.

Rachel: Fine. Let's pack and find the others so we can head home.

Ross is staring off into space, obviously thinking about the marriage.

Phoebe and Joey are in line at the breakfast buffet. After getting their food, they head to a table, where Monica and Chandler are already sitting, finishing up their breakfast.

Phoebe: Okay, so what's the big news?

Joey: Yeah, come on, dude. Out with it already.

Chandler: Okay, well, first...Monica and I have decided to get married. (Waits for the cheers and congratulatory comments to die down) But, we're going to wait a while for a very big reason...

Joey: (gestures to Monica with a cinnamon roll in his hand) Are you pregnant?

Monica:(smiles and shakes her head) No, it's another big reason....

Phoebe:(to Chandler excitedly) Ooh-Ooh! Are you pregnant?

Chandler stares for a moment.

Chandler: (deadpan) Yes, Pheebs, I am. I can't believe you haven't noticed.

Phoebe sits back in her chair, satisfied.

Chandler: No, it's because......well, we were about to get married at the chapel last night, but....when we were about to go in.....Ross and Rachel came out.

Shocked gasps from Phoebe and Joey.

Phoebe: Oh, my gosh! How did that happen?

Chandler: Well, given that after they came out they vomited in the bushes outside, I'd say they were drunk.

Phoebe: Oh, wow. What do you think they're gonna do?

Joey: I hope they stay married.

The rest of the gang nods in agreement.

Joey: But wait! If Ross and Rachel stay married, and you guys end up getting married...(looks at Phoebe)...You up for getting married, Pheebs?

Chandler: Look, just because Ross and Rachel got married, and Monica and I are getting married, that doesn't mean that you and Phoebe have to get married to stay in the group.

Joey: Oh.

Ross and Rachel begin to enter as Monica continues. The others don't notice.

Monica: Besides, who's to say that Ross and Rachel will stay together? There's a good chance that they'll break up.

Ross and Rachel look at each other as the camera fades out. Commercials....then return to airplane, as the gang heads home. Monica, on her way back from the bathroom, sits down in an empty seat next to Rachel.

Monica: Hey.

Rachel: Hi. (sighs)

Monica: So, how do you feel?

Rachel: (hesitates)....Confused. I mean, yes, we were drunk, and that certainly is not a reason to get married, but....(sighs)...When I woke up, I was shocked. You know? I mean, when I found out I was married to Ross. But, when he woke up and realized what had happened, he started talking about an annulment, and I thought, what if this is a sign, you know? What if this is somebody trying to tell us that we should push aside everything that has happened, and just be together?

Monica: You know what I think?

Rachel: What?

Monica: I think that I'm the wrong person to say this to.

They look at each other.

Monica: Talk to him, sweetie. Tell him how you feel. He might just feel the same way.

Rachel looks at her, for a second, then turns to look out the window.

Other side of the plane. Ross comes back from a trip to the bathroom, and sits down next to Chandler.

Ross: Where's Mon?

Chandler: I think she went to talk to Rachel.

Ross becomes thoughtful as he hears her name.

Chandler: Man, are you actually going to get an annulment?

Ross: We were drunk! What else can we do?

Chandler: Well, for starters, you can give the marriage a chance and see what happens. Listen, man. This is your third marriage. Okay? And this time, she's not a lesbian, and she's not forcing you to stop seeing your friends. You married Rachel. Your crush since ninth grade, and quite possibly, your soul mate.

Ross looks at the floor.

Chandler: Hey. Do you love her? Right here, right now, regardless of what has happened in the past?

Ross: Well, yeah.

Chandler: Then talk to her. Tell her you love her, and tell her you wanna make the marriage work. She might feel the same.

Ross: She might not.

Chandler: Well, then my friend, that may be a risk you have to take. Unless you wanna have three failed marriages. (pauses) Just wait till we get home, then talk to her.

Monica and Rachel's apartment. An hour has passed since they returned from the airport. Phoebe, Joey and Chandler are over, sitting on the couch with Monica. Rachel is sitting in the armchair, occasionally staring at her wedding ring. They are watching tv, waiting for Ross to arrive. He walks in, and instantly meets Rachel's gaze.

Ross: Hey, everyone.

Everyone: Hey. Hi.

Ross: Um, Rach, can I talk to you outside?

Rachel: (standing awkwardly) Yeah. Sure.

Balcony outside Monica and Rachel's apartment. Ross and Rachel stand in silence for a moment.

Ross: Listen, um, I needed to discuss something with you.

Rachel: Yeah, too.

Inside, the gang slowly crowds around the big window to watch. Ross and Rachel don't notice.

Ross: About us....and, our marriage....

Rachel: We were drunk.

Ross: Yes. And completely unable to make an educated decision....

Rachel: Yeah.

Ross: But...

Rachel: (anxiously) Yeah?

Ross: This is my third marriage.

Rachel takes a step closer.

Rachel: I know.

Ross: And, I really want this one to work. But, whenever we get back together, there's always one thing that gets in the way.

Rachel: (nods) That whole ' we were on a break' thing.

Ross: I wish this could work, Rachel, I really do. But you...

Rachel: I've put it past me. I've forgotten about it. (pauses, looks at ground) I've forgiven you.

Ross: You have?

Rachel: Yes. (she looks into his eyes) When I woke up this morning, I was shocked at the fact that I was married to you. But, over the course of the day, I kept thinking about it....

Ross: Me too...

Rachel: And yeah, we were drunk. And yeah, we didn't know what we were doing. But that doesn't mean that it can't work...right?

Ross: Right...(pauses, takes her hand)...You know, ever since ninth grade, I hoped that we would end up together....

Rachel smiles as he rubs the ring and rotates it on her finger.

Ross: I just never imagined it would happen while we were drunk.

They both laugh and stand in silence, looking into each other's eyes.

Rachel: Ross, I still love you.

He touches her face and moves closer.

Ross: I love you too. I always have, and I think I always will.

They kiss. The others, along with the audience, cheer and whistle loudly. Pulling apart, they clasp their left hands together as the camera focuses in on their rings. Fade out. Ending commercials and credits.