Helping Hands:

She took purposeful steps towards the house, trying not to let her nerves get the better of her. She raised her hand, willing herself to knock on the door. After a second's hesitation she followed through, giving the door a couple quick raps. She stepped back, placed her hands in front of her, and waited for someone to answer the door. A few muffled noises emanated from the house before the sound of footsteps reached Rachel and finally the door opened.

Noah was almost unrecognizable, she thought to herself. He had forgone the Mohawk, instead his hair was a plain, short buzz cut. He had a little stubble on his face. His trademark dark eyes had deep shadows around them and he looked completely exhausted. His demeanor was not cocky or confident, just impatient. He sighed and simply asked, "why are you here Berry?"

It took him a second to recognize her. She had cut her hair to shoulder length and she hadn't straightened it, letting it fall into natural waves. She was wearing a cotton, blue sun dress that showed off her summer tan. No brightly colored school girl outfit was in sight. She knew she looked different than last year. With all of the drama that had happened last year and having her heart broken for the first time was enough for her to mellow out. She tried to be more relaxed, natural in hopes that her intensity would not intimidate others and get her in trouble.

"I'm here on behalf of Glee club. Yesterday was the first practice of the Glee for the new school year. We have had some new members, but with graduates and people moving…" His arm twitched as she said that but she continued on with her rehearsed speech. "The bottom line is we are a member short to compete. Now, through extensive recruiting we are sure we could fill that spot. However, we are also missing a strong male lead. So why not kill two birds with one stone? I was hoping I could convince you to rejoin Glee. It would mean so much to the team."

He chuckled at that. "I highly doubt that. I was not the most well-liked member of Glee."

She couldn't necessarily refute that. When all of the baby drama had fallen, most people had taken Finn's side in the whole ordeal. When Finn and Quinn eventually reconciled, she shuddered at the memory, it had left Puck out of the loop. He had continued through the rest of Glee season but once that had ended he had disappeared off the face of the earth. Quinn had put the baby up for adoption and Finn and her remained together. They were not around much this school year as they were taking running start classes almost full time. She hardly saw them anymore. They had also opted out of staying in Glee.

"Last year was hard for everybody. I would personally like to put it behind me and get the new school year started strongly."

"Why don't you just go ask Finn to rejoin?" His voice was a little hard, probably already knowing the answer.

"Because, he made his choice abundantly clear last year. I don't want to force him to be around somebody he obviously cares nothing about and in a group that he is not fully committed to."

"Look, Rachel, I'm sorry about everything that happened to you last year and any role I played in it. If I was completely honest with you I would love to join Glee again, but…it's just…my schedule is really full this year, I am not sure I will have time."

"I heard you quit football too. What did your replace both activities with?" She couldn't help but ask, even though she knew she was being nosy.

"Look Rachel, it's just complicated. I have a lot on my plate." He glanced back into the house and as if on cue there was a loud piercing noise. "Damnit," he muttered under his breath.

Rachel peaked around his body, trying to look further into the house to see the source of the noise. "Is that a baby?"

Noah shook his head to himself. "She couldn't stay asleep for five minutes." And with that he took off back into the house, ignoring Rachel while leaving the door wide open.

She didn't know whether or not to continue into the house. Part of her thought that this was Noah's business and maybe she should just come back another time. There was another part of her, and it was the more dominant part, that was curious and felt growing suspicion rise up. She followed that half of her and stepped into the house, following the crying.

She arrived into Noah's room, but it had been transformed. The posters of half naked women and sports players had been taken down. The blue walls were bare. Where his desk and shelves had been was now a crib and a changing table. It was no longer just Noah's room, but a nursery as well. As if there was any doubt left in her mind about the situation, the fussy baby that was in Noah's arms turned its head towards Rachel and appraised the new arrival. The baby's eyes were the exact same shade of hazel as Noah's.

Noah didn't take much mind of Rachel at first. He was too busy pleading with the baby to quiet down. "Shhhh, come on Abby, you need to sleep. I need to sleep. We all need to sleep. Come on baby girl, just shut your eyes."

"Noah?" She honestly didn't know what to say. But when his eyes met hers and she was able to connect the circles around his eyes with the utter exhaustion he must be feeling, she knew that there were no words, at least for now.

She took a few hesitant steps forward, reaching out for Abby. "Can I give it a try?"

His eyes pierced hers, deciding whether or not to trust her. He realized quickly that he was questioning Rachel Berry. He knew he must be really sleep deprived if he was suspicious of her. He passed the bundle in his arms gently into her waiting arms. "I don't know what is wrong with her. She has been fussy for the last 24 hours, barely getting any sleep."

Rachel heard the pure desperation in his voice and focused on the baby in her arms. Abby continued to move in her arms, crying. Rachel reached out to touch Abby's face, feeling that it was a little warm and sweaty from crying. She immediately got into action mode, remembering what had worked for her niece.

"Noah, grab her soap, a towel, and fresh clothes," Rachel ordered.

Noah nodded, retrieving the items she asked for. She took Abby into the kitchen, thanking God that the sink was clean. While still holding Abby in one arm, she did a quick rinse of the sink for good measure, before starting to fill it with tepid water. Noah came running in with the items that were requested. Rachel laid the towel out and placed Abby gently on it. She slowly undid the clothes she was wearing and tearing off the diaper. Abby's wailing had simpered down to sniffling as she looked at this stranger who was undressing her. When Rachel lowered her into the sink her cries instantly stopped.

"Thank you Jesus," Noah exclaimed as he collapsed against the counter in relief.

"You're Jewish Noah," Rachel couldn't help but pointing out with a chuckle.

"I don't care. I will thank any deity you want. Actually I should be thanking you. Thank you Rachel Berry for getting her to shut her trap."

Her response was merely a raised eyebrow as she reached for the baby shampoo. She squeezed a little into her hands before gently lathering Abby's dark curls. There was little sound in the kitchen for a few minutes except for the splashing as Abby giggled during her bath. She knew that one of them had to break the silence but it was hard to decide on what to say.

"She looks like you Noah."

"She's lucky she got the good looks out of this deal." Rachel was glad to hear a little bit of the old Puck come out.

"Let's just hope she has her mother's brains," Rachel quipped back. She regretted saying that when she saw the smile fall off of Noah's face. She refocused all of her attention back to Abby, taking a cup to carefully rinse the lather from her hair. She didn't say anything else, afraid of offending him or drudging up bad memories.

Noah spoke up, his voice gentle. "Quinn didn't want her. I fought her decision to give the baby up for adoption, having to go through the court system. I won and I was granted sole custody of Abby. I could file for child support from Quinn, but I don't want her involved at all in her life. She is someday going to realize the mistake she made by giving up this little girl, and I don't want her to have any leverage or say in any decisions. I just feel bad for Abby, she is going to grow up without a mother."

"I grew up without a mother and I turned out just fine," Rachel replied softly.

Noah smiled sweetly at Rachel, "that you did."

"So if you don't mind me asking, how do you support her?"

"My mom has helped out a lot. We trade off watching her while we work basically. I go to school while my mom stays home with Abby during the day. I come home and she usually heads off the work soon after. I work on the weekends delivering pizza. I can only work part time right now because I am still in high school, but it's enough to make ends meet. My mom has been amazing through all of this."

"It sounds like it," Rachel agreed. She pulled Abby out of the water and started to towel her off. "Is Abby short for Abigail?" Rachel asked.

"Yes. Her full name is Abigail Leah Puckerman," he told her proudly.

"It's a good Jewish name." Rachel couldn't help to remember that Abigail meant father's joy, or gives joy. "It's a very befitting name."

"I know," Noah agreed, knowing the meaning as well.

There was another moment of silence as Abby was dressed and wrapped in a light blanket. Rachel carried her back into Noah's room/nursery and set her in the crib. She heard the strain of springs as Noah sat on his bed, his exhaustion refusing to be ignored any longer. Abby yawned as well but continued to stare at Rachel. Rachel started to hum under her breath and then softly started to sing Somewhere over the Rainbow, the first song that popped into head. It worked like a charm and soon Abby was drifting off to sleep. Once Rachel was sure she was asleep, she turned around and saw that Noah had fallen asleep sitting on his bed. Rachel smiled and quietly went over and dragged/pushed/coaxed Noah into a laying position. He was dead asleep. He didn't wake at all as she moved him. Once he was lying down Rachel slipped his sneakers off and threw the afghan from the foot of the bed over Noah's long frame. She then took a seat in the rocking chair by the crib and sat and watched the two sleep.

She got up when she heard the front door open. She tip-toed out of the room to see Noah's little sister drop her bag on the floor before kicking off her shoes.

"Hi there Becky." Rachel whispered. She recalled his sister's name easily, mentally noting that she looked bigger than she remembered. How did she grow so fast?

"Rachel, what are you doing here?" Becky kept her voice quiet as well. She remembered Rachel clearly. She was the only one of Noah's 'girlfriends to actually speak to her.

"I came by to ask a favor of Noah, but I ended up getting side tracked by Abby. They are sleeping now."

"Abby is sleeping? Oh thank God. It has been torture the last couple of days. She just keeps crying."

"Well, let's stay quiet so they can some sleep. Do you want a snack? I can make you a sandwich."

"Sounds good," Becky agreed easily.

Rachel rummaged around in the kitchen for a few minutes before finding the ingredients for a peanut butter and jelly sandwich. She made one for Becky and herself before sitting down with Becky at the small table in the kitchen. They sat in silence for a few minutes, eating, before Becky asked bluntly "are you going to be Noah's friend?"

"Well," Rachel hesitated, never being asked that question before. "I was hoping he would rejoin Glee."

"Oh, I hope he does. I liked it when he was in Glee. He would sing all the time and play his guitar. It was nice."

Rachel had a hard time imagining Noah actually practicing the music. He had been great in Glee, especially when he had sung Sweet Caroline to them. However, he had always had a carefree, I don't practice manner about him. It is kind of what made his voice so appealing, it was less polished than many of the other voices in Glee.

"Well, maybe I will be his friend."

"You should. He doesn't have any friends anymore. He spends all his time on either with Abby, at work, or at school."

They were interrupted by a soft gurgling noise coming from the open door into Noah's room. Rachel dashed off to the room to find that Abby had awoken; luckily Noah had not stirred yet. Rachel couldn't believe how short a time Abby had stayed asleep. She picked up the baby, taking her out of the room so that Noah could continue to rest.

Becky followed her into the front room, where Rachel laid Abby down on a soft blanket. She found a couple plastic toys in a basket by the television and placed a couple in front of Abby to play with. She seemed happy with the toy selection and started to giggle, hitting a toy that lit up and played tinkling music.

"Do you have any homework Becky?" I didn't know if Noah made sure she did her homework or not after school, but it seemed like the natural thing to do.

Becky groaned. "A little."

"Maybe you should get started on it."

"Fine," Becky grumbled, before stomping over to her bag that she left by the door and bringing it back to the couch. She pulled out a couple of worksheets and a pencil. She started to do the math homework, asking for help every now and again from Rachel who was playing with Abby. They continued like this for a while. Rachel was comfortable and she felt like this was a familiar activity. She didn't feel like she was babysitting, but rather spending time with family.

Slowly, Becky's questions shifted to less academic subjects. "So did you date Finn?"

Rachel wondered why she was asking this question before deciding to be honest with her. "For a little while."

"You are so lucky," Becky sighed.

Rachel figured that to Becky's fifth grade mind Finn was the greatest guy on earth. Growing up with Finn around, he was probably the girls first crush. "He is a good guy. He just didn't have the same kind of feelings for me that I did for him."

"He loved Quinn," Becky stated matter-of-factly.

"Yes," Rachel replied simply, not really wanting to elaborate on the subject.

"I want to have a boyfriend someday."

"You're too young Becky," Noah's voice traveled from the doorway to the living room.

Rachel felt a blush creep up her face, wondering how long Noah had been standing there. She wondered if he found it creepy at all that he kind of just took charge of his daughter and little sister. There wasn't really time to dwell on it though.

"I'm not too young. I am eleven. That is practically a teenager which means I can have a boyfriend."

"You just try that argument on mom when she gets home."

"Fine, I will," Becky obstinately told him.

"So apparently, you don't have any friends," Rachel changed the subject.

Noah glared at Becky. He then joined Rachel on the floor, taking Abby into his lap with the rattle she was playing with. "What's it to you?"

"It's just that by joining Glee again you will be connected to your old friends."


"Of course. We'll start fresh this year. I know it will be great."

"When is the next practice?" Noah sighed exasperated, knowing he probably was not going to get out of this.

"Tomorrow after school until 4:30."

"I don't have anybody to watch Abby tomorrow."

"I can babysit," Becky offered.

"No," both Noah and Rachel replied without even turning to her.

"Fine." It seemed to be Becky's trademark response to anything she didn't like.

"You can bring Abby to Glee with you."

"What?" Noah couldn't help but respond as if Rachel was crazy.

"Bring her with you and if she get's cranky then you can just step out for a few minutes, or I can even help you watch her during practice. I am desperate for you to join."

"I just don't get why? I'm not as good as Finn. He was the one that got all of the solos last year."

"That's not true, Noah. You have a different voice than him and it's not like you were volunteering yourself for songs. It was a struggle for us to get you to sing Sweet Caroline, and I still think the only reason you sang that song for me is that you wanted to get into my pants."

Noah gave a very Puckish smirk, which looked out of place with a baby in his lap. "I was pretty transparent wasn't I?"

"I think it's safe to say you didn't let many of your many layers show."

"That's the nice way of saying I was a douche."

Rachel laughed. "Pretty much. So what do you say? Will you be at practice tomorrow?"

"I don't think you are going to let me say no, are you?"

"Probably not," Rachel conceded.

"Fine," Noah borrowed his sister's favorite word. "I'll go then."

He was a half and hour late. She tried not to think about it too much as they ran through You Can't Stop the Beat from Hairspray. Rachel had to admit they were good, pretty damn good in fact. They may even have a shot at beating Vocal Adrenaline if they could only find a strong male lead to go with her voice. Kurt had tried, but admitted he was not male lead material. Artie's and her voice didn't mesh very well. And none of the newcomers really had strong enough voices yet. She needed him.

As if reading her mind, Noah entered the choir room quietly. He closed the door gently behind him, trying to not draw attention to his and Abby's entrance. It couldn't be helped though. The song abruptly stopped and everybody turned to stare at Noah and the baby carrier he had in hand.

"Good to see you Puck." Mr. Schuester was the first to greet him. "Is this your little girl?"

Noah looked down at Abby who was looking up with wide eyes at Mr. Schuester. "Yes, this is Abigail"

"She's beautiful," Mercedes breathed, sneaking up on them. "Can I hold her?"

Noah set down the baby carrier and took out Abby and handed her off to Mercedes. Mercedes made baby noises at Abby, tickling her, making the baby laugh. Noah was surprised how nobody seemed to think badly of him. Instead everybody was welcoming him, offering up their services as babysitters as they passed Abby around. Noah was a little nervous about Abby being around so many people, but she seemed to be enjoying all of the attention. Noah hadn't taken her out that often and he had only one aunt and one set of grandparents still alive to dote on the little girl. She loved everybody and everybody loved her. Even Mr. Schuester was't too weirded out by the fact that she might have been her daughter if Terri had gotten her way.

It took nearly another half an hour for them to get all of their welcomes out of the way and to get back to practicing. Mr. Schuester handed Noah a part in You Can't Stop the Beat and had the students go through the choreography step by step to help clean it for the rest of the group and to give Noah a chance at catching up with the moves. A little while into rehearsing, Abby started to fuss because nobody was paying attention to her anymore. Without even hesitating Artie rolled over to take care of the baby, leaving Noah to continue working on the song.

Noah shrugged off the button down blue shirt, throwing it on to the growing pile of discarded clothes on his bed. He didn't know when he started to be such a girl. He couldn't pick a shirt for his date with Rachel. She had asked him out last week when he told her about how once a month his grandparents took Abby for the night to give Noah a night off and for them to get some quality time with their great-granddaughter. She said she wanted to treat him to a night out, everything paid for and planned by her. He tried to protest, but she said she wanted to do more than go to the kwik mart and make out in his truck, which he hated to admit were the activities that he had treated her to on their one and only date in their brief one week relationship.

It had been a month since he had rejoined Glee and the time had been amazing. He had a group of friends to eat lunch with. They forced him to stop doing his homework in the library at lunch, saying he needed some time to let off steam. He had agreed and he was able to compensate doing his homework later. Half the time he wasn't in Glee or in school, often one of his friends would come over to hang out and help out with Abby. She kind of became the unofficial mascot of New Directions. Everybody took her under their wing. He had never felt like Abby was lacking anything important, but all of sudden she had new clothes rather than thrift store outfits. He wasn't buying diapers last minute anymore, there was now a little stockpile provided by his friends. It wasn't much to each of them, but adding up all of their small gestures, Abby became quite a spoiled child.

He didn't complain either. He didn't feel like he was alone in this anymore. His mother was a huge help, but their schedules had them spread thin so they barely saw each other. Now he had company in his day to day struggles and it was a comfort. He hated to sounded weak, like he couldn't do this by himself, but he kept reminding himself of the saying it takes a village to raise a baby. And he did have a village.

Rachel was probably the most frequent visitor. She came by often, helping out with Abby so he could do his homework. He had been paying more attention to his education, figuring he didn't want to have to tell his daughter someday that he was a high school drop-out. Abby started to gain a more regular sleeping schedule, which made his evenings easier. Sometimes he and Rachel would just sit on the couch, Abby in one of their arms, while they watched a movie or some television. Their friendship had grown, and it felt natural for their lives to now be intertwined. They still bickered, after all there was still a little bit of Puck in him and there was still a little bit of crazy Rachel Berry in her. The fights were usually over nothing, and within five minutes one of them would get exasperated and concede to the other person. It was a pretty healthy balance.

He was a little pissed that Rachel beat him to the punch on asking him out. He was planning on asking her out soon, but he hadn't gotten up the nerve. All he could think about was how he had went about it all wrong the last time they 'dated', if you could call it that. When she had broken up with him because she still had a thing for Finn, he would never admit it to anyone, but that brought him down a peg or two. The truth is he wasn't going to break up with her. He figured she would put out eventually, after all he was a stud. But, more importantly when they were together he forgot about the baby drama for a while and he had just felt like a normal teenager. She still had that affect on him. When they spent time together, he didn't feel like he was playing out some badly written teen soap opera. Instead, he felt like this was how his life was supposed to be.

But that didn't mean he didn't want tonight to be awesome, and for it to be awesome he actually had to pick out what he wanted to wear. Rachel had just told them that they were going to have a normal date, but that didn't tell him what to wear. Did he have to dress up? But if he dressed up would he look overdressed? He didn't want to look like he was trying, because dude he did not need to try. The doorbell rang and he groaned. Fine. He left his nice pair of jeans on and then threw on a black plain t-shirt and his dark jacket over that.

He reached the door, glad that nobody else was home to see him off. His sister was at a sleepover and his mom had taken an extra graveyard shift. Rachel, was that really Rachel, was standing on his stoop, looking a little nervous. She was wearing a pair of tight, skinny jeans that showed off her long legs. He bet her ass looked good in them too. His eyes traveled up to the blue v-neck shirt she wore, showing off the tiniest hint of cleavage. Her makeup was light and her hair was in soft waves. "Um, you look good Rachel."

"Thanks," she said. "Kurt dressed me in all honesty." He made a mental note to thank Kurt later. She did the once over on him as well. " You look good as well Noah."

Noah hated himself for it, but he blushed at her compliment and appraising stare. "Well, should we get going?"

Rachel shook her head as if clearing her mind. "Yeah, let's go." She shook her keys nervously as they headed to her car, a little Honda sedan. They got into the car, and Rachel adjusted the music so it wasn't blaring, but at a comfortable volume.

"So, where are we going?" What could he say, Noah was a little impatient.

"First, I thought we would go see a movie, then have a late dinner. Does that sound good?"

"Perfect," he agreed easily. It was such a normal set of activities, and simple, but he hadn't seen a movie in the theaters since Abby was born. When they arrived at the theater, he mentally groaned when he saw Eclipse was still in theaters. That was probably the movie Rachel was going to drag him to. She liked Twilight and she had a thing for one of the vampires, but not Edward thank God. She surprised him though, going up to the window and purchasing two tickets for Crank 3. His jaw dropped a little and he still had the shocked look on his face when she turned to him with his ticket.


"I thought for sure we were going to go see Eclipse."

"Nah," she shrugged easily. "I have already seen it three times. Plus, this seemed more like your kind of movie. I think I saw you had the first two Crank movies."

"Of course. Have you seen them?"

"No. I meant to watch them this week in preparation, but I had too much homework."

Noah couldn't keep in the laugh. "Are you sure you want to see this then?"

"Yup. This is your night out Noah, and I am determined that you are to enjoy yourself. With that she headed in the theater and purchased them a large popcorn and two drinks. His mouth started to water at seeing the large bucket of buttery goodness and thought Rachel was the coolest person in the world at that moment for bringing him to the movies. She really knew the way to a guys heart.

He loved the movie and surprisingly she seemed to enjoy the movie as well. She made derisive noises when there was a gratuitous sex scene with Amy Smart, but other than that she went with the movie. She laughed with him at the ridiculous nature of most of the action parts. He couldn't believe he found a girl that could enjoy the Crank movies with him.

Afterwards they went out to eat at a local burger joint. Once again what might have seemed too simple to others was pure pleasure for him. He devoured his burger in record time and practically inhaled his fries. He felt a little self-conscious but Rachel just smiled as she continued eating her burger. He snuck a few of her fries as well and she didn't complain. He tried to sneak the check from her, hoping to contribute to some part of this evening, but she was too quick for him and snatched it. "Let me do this, Noah," she said in a voice that was hard for him to argue with.

She started to drive back towards his house and he was sad to see the night end. It might be a whole other month before he could do this again. She pulled into this driveway and he knew this was the part where they kissed, said goodnight, and he ended up back in his house. Although the kissing idea didn't seem so terrible, it still was not how he wanted this evening to end. "Do you want to come in and hang out for a little bit."

She glanced over at him, eyeing him seriously. "I don't know."

He knew what Puck would have meant by his words, do you want to come in and have sex. That's not what Noah meant by it though. "I promise to be a perfect gentleman. We can just talk and listen to music."

Her eyes studied him for a moment and he tried to have the most innocent look on his face as possible. She didn't seem to find any problems as she agreed to come in. He walked her to his room. He plugged his ipod into his computer speakers and started up their playlist. It was a compilation of both of their favorite music, leading to fewer arguments since both of their music was represented. He fell back onto his bed, lying on his back, letting the music wash over him. She hesitated for a minute before she joined him in his bed. They had lain in bed together on several occasions, but it was usually with Abby still in the room and it wasn't directly after a very successful date.

She moved so she was on her back as well, and there was an awkward pause before she finally broke the silence. "Becky says you haven't dated since last year."

"Have you been asking my sister information about me?" There was something odd about that situation.

"No," she stated defensively. "She offered the information when I told her that I had asked you out. Why haven't you dated? It's hard to imagine the old Puck just giving up women."

"Who says I did?" He quirked an eyebrow at her.

"Noah," her voice was even and her eyes focused in on him.

"Okay. Well, obviously I haven't had the time."

"Is that the only reason? Because I can't imagine that stopping you."

He couldn't believe that she saw through him that easily. He liked to see himself as slightly mysterious and hard to read. He was a jerk at school sure, but that was just a mask for others to see. That didn't seem to stop her though.

"It's hard to have just random sex with girls when you are going to have a daughter yourself. I started to see these girls as someone's daughter and that pretty much killed the mood for me."

"Why not date then? Have relationships? You found time with me, what stopped you before?"

This conversation was quickly becoming uncomfortable for him and he really didn't want to tell her the truth, but she could tell when he was lying, so he was pretty much stuck. He had to trust her and hope that what he said wouldn't mess up his badass image too much. "It's kind of weird. Please don't read too much in what I'm going to say to you." He took her silence as assent. "Well, I didn't really see the point in dating if I couldn't see a future with her."

"You were basically waiting for someone you could see being a mother to Abby?" Rachel asked, her voice barely a whisper.

"I didn't really want to put it like that but I have to admit that in the back of my mind I was thinking about it. I have to think about her first now and it's important to me that she isn't raised in some fucked up family with a stepmother who hates her or neglects her."

"And you think I would be a good mother to Abby?" Her voice was still soft, and there was little inflection in her voice so he couldn't tell whether not she thought of it as a compliment or not.

Well he might as well go for broke. "You are amazing with her, it's impossible to deny it. You are a natural with both Becky and Abby. It's hard for me not to deny that in the back of my head I am praying that you and I work out because Abby would be lucky to have you as a mother. I would even settle for us being good friends for the rest of our lives and you being the cool aunt. Now, please tell me honestly how freaked out you about this confession."

Rachel was quiet for a few minutes before she rolled over so that she was facing Noah and could look directly in his eyes. "I'm not going to lie and say that this whole situation isn't a little odd. I mean we are both 17. We are still in high school. In the same breath, you and Abby have changed my life more than you can ever imagine in the last month and I already love her dearly. I want to be there for her and watch her grow up. And the fact that you told me all of that about your feelings just confirms that I want to be with you. You have grown so much in the last year. You are kind, gentle, and open with me, things I couldn't have said about you when we were dating. But, there is still that little bit of Puck in you that makes things fun and exciting. I have grown to care about you so much in the last month. I guess you made your own confession so I think it is only fair that I reciprocate. I love you Noah Puckerman."

His breath stopped for a moment. Nobody had ever said that to him before and here was the most beautiful person he had ever known lying on his bed confessing her love for him. He knew he had said he would be a perfect gentleman but he couldn't restrain himself any longer. He leaned forward, kissing her passionately, showing her how he felt. Surprising him to no end, she was the one that deepened the kiss, rolling over so she was straddling his hips. He ran his hands all over her face, tangling themselves in her hair, trying to memorize her features. He knew things were at a crossroads when her hands started to lift his shirt off. A part of him was cheering that he was going to get laid. But there was another part that knew this would be Rachel's first time. This night had already been monumental for them. He almost felt like it was too much right now. They were too frantic for it. He wanted her first time to be more special.

He broke away from her lips, kissing her cheeks and chin before leaning back. Her dark eyes met his in question. "Why are you stopping?"

"You know I don't put out until the third date."

She laughed with him, rolling off of him to lie next to him. She wrapped one arm around his chest and threw a leg lazily over his. They continued to talk about their future with brief interruptions by one of them kissing the other. There was less urgency in these kisses. They knew that they had more time in the future go further, but tonight they would just enjoy the moment.

A/N: I have to admit I got bit the Glee bug. I loved the show throughout this first half of the season, but within the last week or two I just kind of gotten into Glee fanfiction. I had no idea there were so many other people rooting for Puck and Rachel. I hope you enjoyed the story and I appreciate any feedback.

If by chance you are one of my regular readers I wanted to give the heads up that I am working on an epic Jasper/Bella story and I am toying with the idea of a sequel to The Married Life. It may take me a while to finish either story but I just wanted to let you know I am still writing.