Summary: Rachel falls one day at Glee and gets a bruise. What happens when that bruise still hasn't left her side two weeks later and she starts to feel really ill? What does a trip to the hospital hold in store for Rachel? Set to Skin (Sarabeth) by Rascal Flatts. Lyrics in Bold.

Sarabeth is scared to death
To hear what the doctor will say

Rachel sat in the hospital waiting room with her two dad's and her newly found mum, wringing her hands as she fretted over what was happening in the room to her right. Her mum placed a comforting hand on her shoulder and Rachel leant into her side.

She hasn't been well
Since the day that she fell

And the bruise, it just won't go away


"Ok Rachel, when you jump off the step, Matt will catch you and spin you around right?" Mr. Schue said. Rachel and Matt nodded and went to their positions.

"One, two three," Mr. Schue called. Rachel jumped and Matt caught her and they performed the move.

"Ok, that was good but Matt, can you do it with a little bit more ease? Don't make it look so rigid," Mr. Schue said.

Matt nodded and Rachel returned to her spot. Mr. Schue counted them in and the whole Glee club watched as Rachel jumped. Matt miscalculated the spin and ended up throwing Rachel across the stage.

"Shit!" Matt and Puck yelled out as everyone raced over to her.

"Shit Rach, I am so sorry. I didn't mean to. Are you ok?" Matt asked as the glee club crowded around their fallen member.

"I'm good guys. It's ok Matt, accidents happen," Rachel said. She lifted her shirt slightly and looked at the forming bruise. "That's gonna hurt in the morning."

"Rachel, you took quite a fall. Do you want to stop for the day?" Mr. Schue asked. "We can work on another part of the choreography."

"Mr. Schue, I'm fine. I promise," Rachel said. She started to sit up and Puck and Matt grabbed her arms. Once she was steady on her feet, she let go of the boys and smiled.

Three days later, Rachel forced herself out of bed. She took a look at the Elliptical but decided against it and took a quick shower. She got out and walked slowly over to her wardrobe. Instead of the usual skirt/shirt combo, she lazily grabbed a pair of black sweatpants and a grey tank top. After throwing a pair of Converse on her shoes and grabbing a jacket and her bag, she walked downstairs to the kitchen.

"Morning honey. How are you?" Alan asked.

"I'm ok," Rachel said. She was lying because she had been feeling like crap for a few days and was really tired. "I'm not really hungry so I'm just gunna head to school. Love you."

She kissed her dads before walking out to her car. She jumped in and drove towards the school.

During the course of the day, she had nearly fallen asleep in three of her classes and instead of lunch, went to the nurse's office to lie down. She ended up sleeping the last two periods and found herself late for glee.

"Has anyone seen Rachel?" Mr. Schue asked once he had taken glee role call at the beginning of the practice.

"Not since before lunch. She looked like crap. She nearly slept through history," Kurt explained.

"Yea and she wasn't in Bio or Chem this afternoon," Artie said.

Mr. Schue looked concerned and was about to go look for her when the girl in question walked into the rom.

"Sorry I'm late Mr. Schue. I was in the nurse's office," Rachel said as she walked over to her seat.

"Are you ok?" Mr. Schue asked. He looked over at her and frowned. She had bags under her eyes, she looked pale and tired.

"Yea, just the flu or something. That's all," Rachel said as she forced a smile onto her face.

Mr. Schue nodded but kept looking over at her as he helped Tina and Mike with their choreography.

Another few days went by and Rachel had missed a few days of school. When she finally returned, her friends were very worried.

"Has anyone seen Rachel today? She looks awful," Quinn said as the glee club sat at their lunch table.

"What does she look like?" Brittany asked with a confused look.

"She is extremely pale, keeps yawning, she has huge bags under her eyes like she hasn't slept in days, she fell asleep at her desk in maths and from what Tina has told me, she has been throwing up," Quinn said. "Also, you remember how Matt dropped her the other day? Well the bruise is still there. It hasn't even changed colour yet."

"She could just be pushing herself to hard. She's done it before. Also, that throw was pretty hard so maybe it's going to take longer for her side to heal," Finn reasoned.

The club watched as Rachel sluggishly walked into the cafeteria and got her food. She started heading towards the table when everyone watched in shock as her eyes rolled back in her head and she fainted. The glee club were out of their seats as fast as possible and by her side in seconds. Puck lifted Rachel's head and placed it in his lap.

"Kurt, go get the nurse!" He shouted. The smaller boy nodded and raced out of the cafeteria. The glee club looked down at their friend, each one worried.

The nurse came rushing in and looked down at Rachel. Everyone was ordered to go to class but none of the glee kids would move.

"I called her dads and her mum. They will be here soon to get her," Mercedes said as she put her phone away.

Rachel started to come around slowly just as her dads and mum walked into the cafeteria.

She was taken to the hospital that night for tests.

-End Flashback-

So she sits and she waits with her mother and dad
Flips through an old magazine

Rachel picked up an old magazine and flipped through it nervously as she waited for the nurse or doctor to come get them.

Till the nurse with a smile
Stands at the door
And says will you please come with me

A nurse finally arrived and ushered the four people into a hospital room.

Sarabeth is scared to death
Cause the doctor just told her the news

Rachel started shaking as she processed the news the doctor had just told her. Cancer. She had a form of leukaemia.

Between the red cells and white
Something's not right
But we're gonna take care of you

The doctor placed a hand on her shoulder as Rachel felt tears well up in her eyes. Her mum grabbed her hand and held it as Rachel cried.

Six chances in ten it won't come back again
With the therapy were gonna try
It's just been approved
It's the strongest there is
I think we caught it in time

The doctor began to tell Rachel about the chemotherapy that she would be going through and that her chances of survival were great. She felt a small glimmer of hope when the doctor said that by doing this procedure, the cancer shouldn't come back.

Sarabeth closes her eyes
And she dreams she's dancing
Around and around without any cares
And her very first love is holding her close
And the soft wind is blowing her hair

Once Rachel got home from the hospital, she went straight to bed, ignoring the messages from her friends asking what had happened. She closed her eyes and instantly found herself in a great dream. She was wearing a beautiful purple dress and was being spun around in a garden by a tall guy. She couldn't make out who it was but she knew that she must love him. The wind was blowing her long brown hair and she smiled.

Sarabeth is scared to death
As she sits holding her mom
Cause it would be a mistake
For someone to take
A girl with no hair to the prom

Rachel's scream the next morning caused her family to come running as fast as they could. When they got to her room, they found Rachel sitting on her bed sobbing holding something in her hands. Her mum walked over to her and wrapped her in a hug.

For, just this morning right there on her pillow
Was the cruelest of any surprise
And she cried when she gathered it all in her hands
The proof that she couldn't deny

"I'll call the school and tell them that Rach won't be there today," Alan said.

"No, I'm - - not gonna - - let this stop me," Rachel said. She stood up and dropped the clump of hair onto the bed and stared at it. It was proof of the disease that was eating her insides.

After her shower – where she cried a bit more as more hair came out – Rachel got into some comfortable clothes and walked to the kitchen.

"Rach, you need to eat something small," Catherine, her mum, said. Rachel nodded and picked up a banana and started nibbling on it.

"Do you want a lift to school today?" Alan asked.

"No, I'm gunna take the bus. I just need one more thing," Rachel said. She went back up to her room and grabbed a black beret. She placed on her head, effectively covering the spot where her hair had fallen out.

She waited at the bus stop listening to her iPod until the bus pulled up. She noticed Kurt, Brittany, Quinn and Matt on this bus. Quinn noticed her first and made the other guys look. Rachel slowly walked onto the bus and smiled at the bus driver. She walked past her friends who were offering her a seat and walked to the back of the bus. Once there, she curled up into a ball, turned her iPod up and closed her eyes.

Sarabeth closes her eyes
And she dreams she's dancing
Around and around without any cares
And her very first love was holding her close
And the soft wind is blowing her hair

Once they arrived at school, her friends tried to talk to her but she walked past them. She didn't want to ignore them but she also didn't want their pity. The teachers who knew about the cancer continuously asked her if she was ok. She explained to a few of them that she would have to leave sometimes for chemo and they understood.

After 2 a bit weeks of successfully hiding her secret, she was approached whilst at her locker.

"I know your secret," A voice said. Rachel turned and came face to face with Dave Karofsky, one of the hockey players who continuously harassed her. He was holding a slushy in his hand and she flinched, preparing herself for an icy shower. Her friends were standing at the end of the corridor and saw the scene, before they could run at Karofsky, he handed Rachel the slushy.

"How do you know?" Rachel asked as she took the slushy off him.

"My sister is at the same clinic. I saw you there the other day. If you ever want to talk to anyone, come find me," Karofsky said before surprising everyone and kissing her on the forehead and walking away. Rachel watched him go looking very confused.

"Rach, are you ok? What did he say to you?" Puck asked as the group walked up to her. Rach just looked at the ice drink in her hand before taking a sip. She sighed and looked into Puck's eyes.

"Guys, I have to tell you something," Rachel said. She led them into a spare classroom where she proceeded to tell them everything.

"Oh God Rach," Quinn said before she crossed herself and hugged Rachel.

"When does chemo start?" Finn asked.

"Tomorrow. I'm a bit nervous," Rachel replied honestly.

"It'll be ok. Do you want one of us to come with you?" Mercedes asked.

"No, it's ok. I don't really want you guys to see me like that," Rachel said. Everyone nodded before Artie pulled Rachel into his lap and everyone joined came together for a group hug.

"Just know Rach, we are your family and we'll be there for you through everything," Puck whispered.

The next few months passed by slowly for the glee club. Rachel ended up losing her hair but it didn't matter much because thanks to the glee club costume department, she had a never ending supply of new hairstyles.

The big shock for her came a week before their junior prom. Rachel was standing by her locker fixing her blonde wig of the day when Puck walked up to her.

"Hey there gorgeous," Puck said.

"Hey Noah. How are you?" Rachel asked.

"I'm great. What about you, how are you feeling?" Noah asked.

"I'm doing better. Chemo is getting tougher but I'm getting through it," Rach replied.

"That's good. I was wondering if you wanted to go to prom with me," Puck said bluntly.

"What? Really?" Rach asked as she looked at Puck incredulously.

"Of course, you're gorgeous and people would be so jealous of me that you are hanging off my arm. It'll be fun," Noah said with an encouraging smile.

"I'd love to," Rachel replied with one of her first proper smiles in weeks.

Its quarter to seven
That boys at the door
And her daddy ushers him in

Rachel and Catherine were putting the final touches to her outfit when Alan called out that Noah was at the door. Rachel and Catherine walked down the stairs and smiled.

"Wow, you look gorgeous Rachel," Noah said. He lifted her hand and kissed it.

"So do you, what's with the hat though?" Rachel asked.

Noah smiled and said "Wait here but close your eyes."

Rachel did as she was told and waited. She heard the door open but didn't open them yet.

And when he takes off his cap
They all start to cry
Cause this mornin where his hair had been
Softly she touches just skin

She opens her eyes when her parents gasp. There was Noah, Finn, Matt, Mike, Artie and Kurt all standing there smiling. Rachel slowly walked over to the boys and looked at them with tears in her eyes. She lifted her hand and carefully rested it on Noah's head.

"You guys shaved your heads for me?" Rachel asked.

"Rach, we told you that we would do anything for you. Even if I did lose my gorgeous locks, they will grow back soon. Love you babe," Kurt said. He pulled Rachel into a hug followed by the rest of the boys and the girls.

Rachel wiped the tears from her eyes before they ruined her makeup and smiled at the boys.

"Thanks so much guys. You have no idea what this means to me," Rachel said.

Alan, David and Catherine started taking photos of everyone before the glee club walked back out to the hired limo.

And they go dancin
Around and around without any cares
And her very first true love is holding her close
And for a moment she isn't scared

Noah and Rachel danced the whole night away. They were very rarely apart and even then it was when the girls all danced together or she danced with one of the other boys. Finally it came time for a slow dance and Noah pulled Rachel back into his arms.

Rachel rested her head on Noah's chest and smiled as his arms tightened around her waist.

"You ok?" He asked when he heard her sigh.

"I've never felt safer," She whispered in reply as the music flowed around her. For the first time in months, she didn't care what was to come. She felt safe and loved.