Author Note: None.
Quinn's fingertips run along the ribboned edge of the bassinet as she looks around the room. There's too much wicker and baby blue and pale yellow for her liking. She knows she can't complain and should be grateful she even has a roof over her head, but she still can't stop herself from hating the pretty nursery. Quinn frowns and leans forward, peering down at the sleeping baby.
"How does it feel to be a problem?" she whispers bitterly, eyes narrowing against the prickling she feels. There's a long moment of silence before she sniffs quietly and picks up the baby. It lets out a tiny mewl at the disturbance and Quinn feels her jaw clench as she walks out into the hall.
"Can you watch her?" Quinn asks, and Brittany looks up from her textbook to find Quinn standing close by, the baby in her arms. "I need an afternoon alone."
Brittany almost declines, because she really needs to study and Santana's coming over later and she'll be pissed if they have to spend the entire night babysitting, but she must nod—or maybe she doesn't—and there's a little burrito-shaped bundle placed carefully in her arms. She looks down at the face scrunched and pink even in sleep and the one mittened hand that's managed to escape from the folds of the blanket and sighs heavily as Quinn slips wordlessly out the door.
Two hours later, Santana walks into Brittany's house to find her girlfriend on the couch, jackknifed into a corner and watching the tv on mute, the sleeping baby cradled in her arms.
"Sorry," Brittany whispers apologetically as Santana shakes her head and flops down on the other end of the couch.
"Not your fault," she grunts. Her eyes flick over both of them before she manages a half-hearted smile. "Nice hat, though."
Brittany beams, and that plus the baby hat with little cat ears is almost too cute to bear. It doesn't even bother Santana that much that they end up putting the baby to sleep and move the monitor from the spare bedroom—Quinn's room—into Brittany's before curling up together in bed, too tired to do anything else.
It's probably the longest time they've spent together at Brittany's and not done anything. Santana looks up from waving a lamb doll in the baby's face as Brittany pushes off of her seat on the floor and heads downstairs to answer the doorbell. Rachel looks smaller and more worried than normal standing on her front porch, and Brittany steps aside as she lets her in and follows her up the stairs.
"Quinn gave her to me last night," Brittany offers as they reach her room. Santana's no longer holding the lamb because she's too badass to care about babies in front of anyone else but her or be seen holding a doll, and she sidles next to Brittany as they all look down at the baby. It's starting to wake up and squirm, probably hungry, and Brittany thanks whatever higher power is up there that Rachel's finally here, because as much of a good person she is, she isn't going to touch the bottle of one of her best friend's emergency breast milk downstairs. That's definitely girlfriend territory.
"I guess I'll take her home for now," Rachel says, picking up the baby, and Santana lets out an audible sigh of relief as Brittany shoves whatever useful baby-related item she can find in a bag and carts it outside, where Rachel's dads are waiting in their car. Rachel follows with the baby in a carrier, and Santana trails behind them, taking charge of all the locks and belts of the baby seat because she mutters, "God knows I've had enough practice."
"Sorry about that," Rachel apologizes as Santana's getting the seat ready. Her voice cracks, and Brittany shakes her head, pulling her into a crushing hug.
"Text me, okay?" she says when she lets go, and Rachel nods, thanking Santana before waving at them and sliding into the car.
Brittany's leaning up against the doorjamb when Santana steps up behind her, resting her chin on her shoulder as her arms encircle her waist. Quinn's room was always stark—she had refused offers to let Brittany's mother help furnish it any more than necessary—but things are obviously missing. Brittany can't bring herself to step over the threshold and go in, though. It wouldn't matter anyway, because she already knows what's gone.
Santana's voice is quiet in her ear, and Brittany looks down, finding one of Santana's hands and tangling their fingers together, squeezing hard.
"What'd she take?"
"Everything she needed."