Summary: Mother Nature unleashes herself on Lima. Rachel ends up at the Puckermans and finds herself in close quarters with Puck and his family. The whole thing is unexpected. For LiveJournal fictable prompt #1 – snow.
The storm gets so serious that school lets out right after lunch. Rachel drives home carefully, her hands at "10" and "2" on the steering wheel and she's gripping it so tightly that her fingers ache. But the roads are already ice-covered and it's only going to get worse as the day progresses so she knows that she needs to be attentive and get home safely.
She relaxes once she's back in the warmth of her quiet house. Changing into sweatpants and a matching shirt, Rachel swipes her hair into a ponytail and clicks on the television. Normal daytime programming has been pre-empted by the storm coverage. The weather guy calls it "Ohio's most serious January storm in three decades" before explaining that the freezing rain will eventually transition to snow and then they're going to get at least 15 inches. The radar shows that the storm covers all of Indiana and most of Illinois, besides the half of Ohio that she calls home. Then the weather guy smiles at the camera and sends it back over to Rod Remington, who flashes a grin to his loyal viewers and tosses the news over to live coverage outside the studio.
Rachel unfolds her legs and gets up from the couch to pour herself another cup of hot chocolate. She's staring out the kitchen window watching the freezing rain continue to build up on all the surfaces outside when she hears her phone ringing from her bag. She digs it out and sees that it's Dad.
"Hey, pumpkin, I won't make it home. They just closed the interstates. Are you okay?"
"Yes, Dad, I'm safe at home. Where will you stay?" She's worried for her Dad and now she's going to be alone through this horrible storm. There's suddenly a pit in her stomach.
"I'm going to go grab a hotel room. What a day for a meeting in Columbus, huh? Too bad we're not with your Daddy out in San Diego."
Rachel thinks about her father, attending a CPA conference in sunny California, and is filled with jealousy.
Sighing into the phone, she tells her dad to be safe and that she loves him and then hangs up. She's on her own. She goes back into the living room and then hears the sound of a crack outside right before the lights go out. She squeaks before throwing on her boots and her coat and heading outside to investigate. It doesn't take long to discover that a huge branch from her neighbor's tree has buckled under the weight of the ice and has broken off and is now lying across the power lines.
"Great. That's just great," she mutters to herself. Now she won't have light or heat and she can't stay home, not in a storm this bad. Panic rises up in her throat and she's not sure what she's going to do. She can't really drive anywhere because things are so bad out. But if she stays home, she'll freeze to death before her fathers can make it home and find her.
She pushes back into the dark house and dials the number that her dads have hung on the fridge. It's their nearest neighbor that also belongs to the same temple.
She has to call the Puckermans.
Maggie Puckerman picks up the phone from four streets over and is instantly concerned with the welfare of her son's classmate and the daughter of her friends. "You come right over, Rachel," she insists.
Rachel hangs up the phone and runs upstairs, shoving some clothes and a few toiletries into her bag. She grabs her laptop and shoves that in, too, as well as her iPod, the book she's reading, and her phone charger.
She changes into her boots with the thick soles, shoves a hat over her head, winds a scarf around her neck, and heads back downstairs. Locking up tightly, she carefully traverses the icy grass and cuts through her neighbor's yard toward the Puckerman home.
As she carefully walks, she's amused that she doesn't even dread the idea of spending time with Noah anymore. In fact, it makes her a tiny bit excited - but only a very teeny, tiny, itty bitty, small little bit. They've been putting up with each other since sophomore year thanks to glee club and now they're halfway through junior year and are actually decent friends. They don't talk much, no, but they seem to get one another. And every once in a while, she finds herself either almost kissing him or really kissing him. The last time was two weeks before after Glee practice. Her car was in the shop and he offered to take her home. When she climbed out of his truck, he hopped out and pulled her bag out of the back and then he kissed her. It was only once and was over too fast. But then he was gone and since then, neither one of them had mentioned it. Things went back to the way they had been before. It made no sense but then again, when did anything involving herself and Noah Puckerman ever make sense?
After nearly slipping on the slick streets and sidewalks, Rachel finally makes it up the two steps to the Puckerman front porch and knocks on the door. Maggie pulls the door open, clucks at Rachel because her cheeks are so red, and pulls her inside the house. The warmth of the room, coupled with what smells like chili cooking on the stove, waft around Rachel and she instantly begins to thaw. She drops her bag by the door and unwinds her scarf. Maggie takes her wet outer clothes and goes to hang them in the laundry room to dry. She steps through the entry hall and sees Noah and his sister, Sarah, sitting on the couch watching television.
"Lost your power, huh?" Puck calls out to her.
"Yes, unfortunately," Rachel answers.
Puck stands up, taps his sister on the head to make her move her legs, and then walks out to Rachel. "And your dads are out of town?"
"Well, Mom's making a shitload of chili. She always cooks chili when it snows. It's kinda her thing."
Rachel smiles and then Sarah calls out, "Noah, the commercials are over!"
Puck winks at Rachel and heads back into the living room. He grabs a blanket and throws it over his sister, who sinks into the couch and leans against him with the blanket draped over the two of them. Rachel smiles because she's known that Puck is actually a really good big brother for a long time but she still likes to see him in action.
Maggie invites Rachel into the kitchen and hands her a mug of tea, which Rachel takes gratefully.
"It's a mess out there, isn't it?" Maggie asks.
"It is. And Dad is stuck in Columbus because they closed the interstates. And who knows when our power will be fixed because I know they can't come out in this mess!"
Maggie pats Rachel on the hand and says, "Well, I'm glad you called me. You know you're always welcome here."
Rachel smiles up at Maggie and then sips her tea. She can hear Puck and Sarah in the other room and they're laughing at something on television. Maggie looks up from the sink and says, "Rachel, feel free to join the kids. They've got snacks in there."
Sliding off the seat, Rachel smiles and palms her mug as she walks into the living room. She stands at the edge of the couch and Sarah looks up and says, "Hey, Rachel, you can come get under this blanket with us." She lifts the edge of the blanket in invitation.
Setting her mug down, Rachel slides under the big blanket next to Sarah and reclines against the back of the couch. Puck's eyes never leave the television and Rachel sees that they're watching old reruns of "Family Matters." Steve Urkel appears on the screen and Puck swears quietly. Both Sarah and Rachel turn and glare at him and he glares back. "What? I fuckin' hate this guy!"
"Noah! Don't swear!" Maggie calls from the kitchen.
Puck ignores his mother and makes a face at the TV.
"Well, I think he's funny and he would probably hate you just as much…you know, if he was real and all," Sarah offers in defense of Steve before turning her attention back to the television.
Rachel relaxes and finds herself laughing along with Sarah but she jumps when she feels her hair being tugged. Glancing back, she sees Puck's arm over the back of the couch and realizes that his fingers are sliding through the tips of her hair. She watches him out of the corner of her eye but he never looks her way. Rachel thinks its strange but doesn't say anything because honestly, it's an enjoyable feeling. He only does it for a minute or two and then stops and it makes Rachel wonder if he realized he was even doing it at all.
When the show goes off, Sarah announces to no one in particular that she has to pee and shoots out of the room. Puck stands up and looks out the window. "It's changed over to snow now," he tells Rachel. She gets up and joins him at the window. Their arms brush as they both look out, watching the snow fall heavy and quick. The ice-coated ground is now white and snow is beginning to pile up. The streets are empty of vehicles and it looks as if everyone in the entire world has retreated into the safety of their homes.
Rachel hears Sarah and her mother talking in the kitchen and she turns and flops back down on the couch, pulling the blanket back over her body. Puck soon joins her, lifting the blanket up and sliding under with her. Their bodies press together and Rachel thinks about moving over but she's cold and Puck's body is so warm that she doesn't budge. When Sarah comes back, she presses herself against Rachel and the three end up piled on one end of the couch to finish the episode. Rachel feels Puck's hand brush against he knee several times and it makes her breath stumble in her throat. When the credits roll and then "Full House" comes on, Puck says, "Oh, hell no, we're not watching this crap!" He grabs the remote and thumbs the television off and the living room goes silent.
"I'm going to go play with my Barbies. If you get bored, Rachel, let me know." Sarah flounces up the stairs and leaves Puck and Rachel alone in the living room.
"I'm bored as fuck, Rach. There's nothing on TV."
"You could go play Barbies with Sarah," Rachel offers with a smile. Puck just sneers at her and then stands up and heads into the kitchen. She follows and watches as he reaches around his mother and snags a chunk of Colby cheese from the bowl. Maggie swats at his hand and then pats him on the cheek.
"Are you hungry, Rachel? We'll eat dinner soon."
Rachel's stomach is growling because the chili smells divine. Puck's stirring the pot and then she watches as he dips a spoon in, blows on the mixture, and tips it into his mouth. He grins at her and says, "S'good."
"Noah! Go set the table!" Maggie orders with a wooden spoon in her hand. Puck pretends to be irritated but then dutifully does as his mother instructs. Rachel can't help but think it's cute.
During dinner, Rachel's foot keeps brushing against Noah's and it makes her jumpy. She's afraid he's going to think she's doing it intentionally because she's not. She keeps looking up at him from across the table but he's never looking at her. Instead, he's staring at his chili bowl or picking on his sister or rolling his eyes at his mother. But when she looks away, she swears she feels him watching her. Finally, when dinner is done and the dishes are being cleared away, she catches him looking at her and she looks back. Heat creeps up her neck and colors her cheeks but he doesn't look away. Her gaze settles on his lips and she finds herself remembering what they feel like. She tries to shake the feeling away but it doesn't leave. Instead, it slides down her body and settles low in her gut.
After dinner is done, Maggie washes the dishes and Puck dries while Rachel teaches Sarah how to sing a few lines of "Don't Rain on My Parade." Sarah's singing voice is terrible; she's nothing like her brother. But Rachel's far too nice to point it out so she tells Sarah that she did a good job and Sarah beams. She thinks she's won over Puck's sister but then wonders why in the world that even matters.
Sarah disappears to watch a movie in her bedroom before bed and Puck disappears upstairs. Rachel calls her father to let him know that she's at the Puckermans and that there is no electricity at home and then sits cross-legged on the couch, her computer in her lap, and checks her email. Then she pulls up iTunes, slides in her earphones, and drowns out the unfamiliar world of the Puckerman home through the loud music in her ears.
Before she can even realize that so much time has passed, Maggie is tapping her on the shoulder.
"Here are some blankets and a pillow, Rachel. If you find you need anything more, the linen closet outside the downstairs bathroom has more."
"Thank you, Maggie. I think this will be sufficient."
Maggie pats Rachel on the shoulder again and tells her goodnight. She flips out the kitchen light and then she disappears up the stairs and Rachel is now alone for the night.
She gets up off the couch and heads into the dark kitchen. Flipping the light on over the sink, she pulls a glass out of the cabinet and fills it with tap water. She's downing it when Puck wanders in. Sarah is now asleep and she can hear his mom's television on in her bedroom upstairs. Puck's changed into a sleeveless t-shirt and a pair of sweatpants and Rachel tries not to look at his arms. It's impossible, though, because she thinks they're incredible.
"Did you talk to your Dad?" Puck asks as he opens the fridge and pulls out a can of soda.
"Yes. He said to thank you all for your hospitality."
"It's not a problem. You haven't been that annoying today…I mean, like, you've been less annoying than normal anyway. Sure, you've rattled on and on and stuff but I've only wanted to kill myself, like, once since you got here."
Rachel scowls at him because she doesn't expect the insult. Turning her back on him, she dumps the rest of the water in the sink and then clunks the glass down. Without another word, she whizzes by him and back int the living room. Puck follows her.
"What's your problem?"
Rachel shakes her head. "I thought we were getting along but now you're insulting me so I realize that I was sorely mistaken."
"How did I insult you?" Puck looks confused, she can tell.
"You called me annoying! You implied that suicide is a viable option to being in my presence." She crosses her arms and stares at the radar that's on TV. There are still hours of snow still to come.
"Shit, Rach…I always call you that. It's not an insult. You know you're annoying."
"No, Noah," she corrects. "I know that I'm strong-willed and goal-oriented. Those things do not make me annoying."
"Yeah, they kinda do," he argues.
Rachel waves her hand at him. "Whatever you say, Noah. Don't you have video games to play or something? I think I'm going to try to sleep soon."
Puck doesn't move so Rachel gets up and begins unfolding the blankets that Maggie has left for her. When they're neatly unfolded and tucked into the couch cushions, she pulls them back and fluffs up her pillow. She feels Puck's eyes on her and she turns and says, "Goodnight, Noah." She knows her voice is a little harsh but her feelings are hurt. She gets tired of hearing herself described as annoying. She knows she can be grating and that people don't understand her but it hurts to constantly hear. And she's tried to change in the past but realized a long time ago that she is who she is. Still, just once, she'd like to be appreciated by someone other than her fathers for who she is.
Puck stand there for another minute and finally says, "Well, g'night."
"Goodnight, Noah," she says coldly. She doesn't watch him when he walks away but after he's gone, she heaves a small sigh of relief. She feels like she's been on edge around him all day. He does things to her…makes her body feel like there are little sparks at all the nerve endings and frankly, it irritates her. And when she finally thinks she can let her guard down a little bit, he reminds her that he still sees her just like everyone else at McKinley sees her and she's tired of it. Noah is no different than anyone else.
Rachel hears Maggie's television go off and then the house is totally quiet. The television in the living room is on mute because she wants to monitor the weather and also needs light when she sleeps in an unfamiliar place.
She thinks she hears Puck sneeze upstairs and then she's thinking about him again. If she didn't find him so attractive, all of this would be easier. Maybe her feelings wouldn't get hurt when he insulted her. After all, Artie tells her that she's annoying all the time and she doesn't care because she actually finds Artie to be equally as annoying. But when Puck says it, it digs at her just a bit.
Rachel turns her back on the TV and faces the back of the couch. Ignoring the smell of Noah that has permeated the cushions she's lying on, she closes her eyes and goes to sleep.
At 2am, Rachel shoots away because the room suddenly goes dark when the television snaps off. The power has gone out at the Puckerman house. She pushes back the blankets and sprints to the window to look out. She's greeted to heavy snow falling and blackness. The entire street is now without electricity.
She hears footsteps behind her and quickly smoothes her hair because she knows it's standing wildly. "Power's out now, huh?" Puck asks from behind her.
"Yes," is all she says in reply.
"The upstairs will stay warm for a while but it's probably going to get cold down here, Rach."
"That's fine, Noah. I have plenty of blankets. I'll be fine." She realizes she's being short and dismissive but she's still a bit miffed at him for his comment earlier. Plus, it's the middle of the night and she knows she's in his house and her mind travels back to the way he makes her feel (when she's not mad at him). She's still looking out the window and she expects him to leave but instead, she hears him sit down on the couch. When she turns around, she sees that he's shirtless and is reclining on her pillow.
"Move, Noah. I need to get back to sleep." She drops her hands to her hips and puts a threatening look on her face but then realizes that he can't even see her face in the near-darkness.
"This is comfortable, Rach," he says.
Rachel grunts because she's still mad at him from earlier. She stands over him and says, "Noah Puckerman, get off my couch right this instant. You have your own stupid bed, now go lie in it!"
Puck just lets out a laugh and then his hand goes around her wrist and he's tugging her down. When she's finally done tumbling, she's on top of him on the couch and her face is aligned with his. She feels like she's going to start shaking because her body is pressed against his bare chest.
"Move," she orders, her voice as calm as she can when her body is zinging with fire.
"Nope, s'feels good. You're warm." His hand, which had been on her back, is now making lazy circles and she can tell he's going to move lower. She keeps telling herself mentally to get up. If she just gets up, he will, too. But then he says, "I didn't mean to be an asshole earlier, Rach. Sometimes, it just slips out."
Rachel smirks in the dark. "Sometimes? Meaning every waking moment?"
Puck chuckles and she feels his nipple ring brush against her own breast. "Yup, I guess so." He stops laughing and then says in a serious voice, "But really, I didn't mean to hurt your feelings and shit. It's been pretty okay having you around. I mean, my sister and my mom love you and, you know, I don't mind having you around."
"Well thank you, Noah." She knows that it's the best apology she's going to get him and it's honestly better than she expected because she didn't expect to get one at all. Ever. She pushes herself up on her knees because she's afraid that if he keeps touching her, she's going to say something stupid.
But then Puck sits up, too, and her plans to make a safe escape are thrown out the window because he moves and then his mouth is on hers. He's kissing her so hard that it almost hurts. His hands seem to be everywhere and she instantly feels like she's dying the best kind of death. Chills start at the crown of her head and they roll down her body and she shudders against him. Everything seems to be happening so fast because his hands are tugging at her shirt and then it's on the floor and he's palming her bare breast. His big hand covers it completely and it's so warm. She has no idea how they're arguing one minute and then he has her practically naked the next but she's bothered when his hand leaves her breast. The frustration is short-lived, however, because he's twisting and turning them until she's below him on the couch and he's kissing his way across her shoulders like he's starving. Her eyes close and she openly trembles because this is so far outside of her comfort zone.
"Noah, what are we doing?" she whispers. His lips are moving across her bare breasts and her entire body feels like it's on the cusp of incinerating. Every inch that his lips touch seems to instantly burn with a delicious fire that she doesn't want to put out but the sensible side of her knows that this cannot go any further than it has already.
"Noah," she tries again. Her hand slides up and cups his cheek and she lifts his face away from her nipple. His mouth detaches and the cold air of the room swirls around the wet nub. Puck's head tilts up and before she can ask him another question, he's kissing her again. Their bare skin is meshed together and she can feel how hard he is through his pants and her own. Knowing that she did that to him - that he wants her like that – is a heady sensation and her body trembles.
When he slides his tongue out of her mouth and moves to lick her ear, she whispers, "we can't do this."
"We're not doing anything, Rach," Puck whispers. "Just a little makin' out." His fingers trace over her bare abdomen in the dark and slide inside her pants, pressing against the front of her panties. Rachel's head falls back and she sucks in a hard breath. She wants to push his hand away because they really can't do this but she's unable to move. When his fingers start kneading her through the fabric, she's afraid she's going to cry out so loudly that she'll wake everyone in the house. She shoves her hand over her mouth to keep herself quiet and when his finger slips along the edge of the elastic and brushes against her slit, her back arches. She can't believe this is happening and a part of her knows that this shouldn't be happening. But the larger part of her keeps chanting "more, more" and her inclination is to listen.
"You want me," Puck says as he drags his lips down her neck and back to her small breasts. His fingers are working her clit through her panties and she knows she's totally wet now. When he pulls his fingers from her pants, Rachel protests. But then he's pushing her legs open and pressing his erection against her center and he says, "Fuck, Rachel, I want you, too."
She audibly groans when the heat of him sears through her and she knows, at that moment, that she's going to give in to this. If she were so inclined, she'd admit to herself that maybe she's wanted this for a lot longer than she can acknowledge because she and Noah aren't – well, weren't – in that place.
"Noah," she moans, desperation in her voice. Her body is literally in flames. She either needs him to fan the fire or put it out completely but she can't keep feeling like she's feeling.
"What do you want, Rachel?" His voice is barely there…barely escaping his throat but it's deep and she can tell how aroused he is and it's like gasoline to the need raging through her.
"I don't know, Noah," she complains honestly because she really and truly doesn't know. "I just need this…this feeling to… Oh, god," she keens.
Puck presses his lips to her abdomen, just below the swell of her breasts, and sucks. She arches her center toward him and his hands slip back inside her pants but this time, they're inside her panties, too. She hears him groan when he feels how wet she is and then his finger is inside her and he's moving it in and out of her and she can't control the way her hips are bucking against his hand. She feels like laughing and crying as all these emotions seem to be collecting and pooling low inside of her. His lips slide up her body and then attach themselves to her lips and he kisses her hard as he pushes a second finger inside of her. He curls his fingers deep and she grunts in both shock and extreme pleasure. She's on the edge of…something. It's like her body knows something incredible is about to happen but she hasn't yet been clued in on what that is. In a small moment of clarity, she wishes she'd experimented with her body in even the slightest of ways so that she'd know what to expect because this burning and desire and need is all completely foreign to her.
"I wanna fuck you, Rachel," he groans against her ear. "But I know you're a virgin."
She can tell he's letting her make the call on what happens next. It would be so easy to tell him to go upstairs and she knows that he would. That's the thing about Noah…she knows they have their differences but she also trusts him and she knows that he'll respect her wishes. Sure, he'll whine and pretend he's dying but then he'll walk away if she asks him to.
His fingers slow their movements and she can tell he's waiting for her to give him a signal. Before she realizes what she's doing, her hand is on his and she's pressing him against her, trying to sink his fingers deeper inside her body. Puck growls and slides his fingers out in response, which makes Rachel so frustrated that she could scream. Pulling himself up, he whispers, "I'm going upstairs to get condoms. I'll be right back. Don't fucking move." The last sentence isn't an order but more of a plea and her lips curl into a smile automatically.
She watches him go and has a moment to collect her thoughts. She smoothes her pants out and then pulls the blanket over her chest, partly to shield against the cold and partly because she's naked from the waist up. She hears him clomp back down the stairs and her throat is suddenly in her chest. Is this really happening? Is she really about to go through with this?
When the blanket is pulled back from her body and he sinks down onto the couch, pushing her back into the cushions again and locks his lips to hers, Rachel realizes that yes, this is about to happen. She feels Puck's hands moving and realizes that he's pushing his pants down and off. Then he's against her again and she can feel how hard he is through her pants. But more than the hardness, she notices the heat. It's like a brand against her thigh and she thinks she's going to come clean out of her skin. Then his fingers are in her waistband and he's pulling her panties and her pants down and off. He tosses them to the floor and pushes her legs open. He moves to kiss her and she feels his cock pressed tightly against her clit and she cries out as her body revolts against her. She feels her center clutch around something that's not there right before she goes limp. When she's still shaking, Puck has his arms around her back and he's pulled her against him and buried his nose in her hair. She hears him laughing and she'd reach up and smack him if her bones hadn't left her body. Her head falls back against the pillow and she exhales loudly. She could literally almost fall asleep from what she's just felt. It was like lava rushed through her entire body and then exploded. But when she thinks she can't handle anymore, she feels him shift and then the blunt head of his cock is rubbing up and down her wet center and she's suddenly alive again. She doesn't understand how her body can go from exhausted to needful so fast but it's happened. He pulls his cock away and drags it over her thigh and then across her belly. She's moaning because it's so hot and yet the wetness that was on him – her wetness – is now cooling on her exposed skin and the contrasting temperatures is just too much. She pulls his head down and kisses him as she feels him rub the head against her clit again.
"So fucking hard," he groans against her mouth. She keeps waiting for him to put on the condom and finally do it but then he's touching her with his hands – testing and teasing as his lips nibble across her chest and over her shoulders.
She's okay for a few minutes and she loves to feel him explore her body but then, when her body feels like she's standing on an electrical wire, she moans his name loudly and he seems to snap. She hears the foil tear open and he stops touching her long enough to roll the condom on. Then his arms are wrapped around both of her thighs and he's pressing her wide open. She feels him rub against her again but it feels different because now there's a barrier between their skin. His breath is on her face and their eyes lock in the dark.
"You sure?" he asks quietly. "Because if you're not, say the fuckin' word and I'll stop, Rach."
She nods and lifts her head off the pillow to kiss his mouth. "I'm sure," she whispers against his lips.
He seems to shudder against her and then she feels herself being spread open as he presses into her. He moves so painfully slow that Rachel almost asks him what he's waiting on. But then he pushes hard and sinks all the way into her and she presses her mouth against his shoulder and cries out. It hurts more than she thinks it's going to.
"You okay?" he asks against her hair. His voice is soft and she can tell he's concerned and it's either that or the residual pain that makes her tear up. He shifts slightly and it moves him inside her and she rolls her hips instinctively.
"Fuck, Rach…are you okay?" he barks it out this time and she can tell that he's gritting his teeth.
"Y—yes, Noah, I'm fine." Her answer is partly automatic but really, she's starting to relax and the burn is sliding away and now she's really just feeling full and unsatisfied. She experiments and lifts her hips up off the couch and then his hands are under her and he's sliding back out of her body before slipping back in. She hears a sound that she realizes has come from deep within her own body and her eyes are closing against the incredible sensation of his flesh moving inside hers.
Puck slides an arm up by her head and puts his fingers on her forehead, tilting her head back to kiss her. As he does, he slowly sets a rhythm. It's like his body is teaching hers because she's suddenly doing the dance with him. He's pushing and she's pulling. He's giving and she's taking. He's pressing and she's arching. She feels like her head is spinning because he's just in one part of her yet it's like he's in all parts of her. She thinks she can even feel him in her fingers and it's nearly an out-of-this world experience.
She hears him grunt and he drops his head against hers and says, "Rachel…oh fuck, Rachel" and she knows he's coming. He's panting and shaking for a moment before he practically falls on her and then he's carefully sliding out of her body. She's still burning with need and she wonders what's going to happen now because he's done and she's not. And because he knows this too, his thumb is between her legs and he's brushing against her clit back and forth, over and over again. She gasps out his name and he slides his fingers back inside her and curls them against the inside wall and then she's gone. She's flying over a cliff and all she can see is tiny pinpoints of light that look a little bit like the snow that's falling outside. Her body bows off the couch and her thighs clench around his hand and she's breathing his name out like a song. When she wilts against the couch, Puck slides his fingers back out of her body and sits up. Rachel feels him shuffling and then he leaves the couch for a second. She hears the downstairs bathroom flush and then he comes back.
"Rach? You sure you're okay?" he asks. His voice is gruff and she wonders if this is where he'll say "thanks" and disappear upstairs.
"I think so," she answers. She hates that her own voice sounds so unsure, almost childlike, but she can't help it. What's just happened has shaken her because it was both so unexpected yet so completely wanted.
Puck sits down on the couch and nudges her with his bare hip. She sits up and he pulls her into his lap before lying down on the couch and pulling him on top of her. She waits for him to speak but instead, he presses his lips against her forehead and pulls the blanket over both of them. Rachel drops her head against his chest and listens to him breathe as his heart beats. She has so much that she needs to say. She opens her mouth to speak but stops when she feels his fingers slide up her back and then stroke down her spine. She closes her eyes and thinks that maybe she'll talk later.
She never expected that her first time would be on a couch while a near-blizzard rages outside. She certainly never anticipated that it would be with Noah Puckerman. Had she known that this would happen when she called Puck's mom hours before, she's unsure she would have had the nerve to come over. But when Puck kisses her slowly, his lips drawing her closer and his arms finding their way around her back to hold on tight, she realizes that she won't regret any of what's occurred tonight. She doesn't know what's going to happen in the morning, when daylight illuminates the snow and the ice and the fact that they can never go back to the way things were before. All she knows is that some time later, maybe an hour or maybe not even that long since he last did this to her, Puck's kissing his way across her collarbone and down her shoulders again and he's whispering to her that she's beautiful. And when he pushes inside her again a few minutes later, she feels beautiful and she knows that it's because of him. When she shatters under him while he's still hard inside her, she thinks she may love him just a little bit for making her feel this way.
In the early morning hours, Puck whispers that he'd better get back to his own bed and reluctantly untangles himself from Rachel's body. With a final soft kiss to her lips, he slips his pajama pants back on his body and disappears up the stairs. Rachel watches him go and tells herself that morning will come soon enough. She can deal with the aftermath then. Right now, though, she needs to sleep.
The smell of food wakes Rachel up a few hours later. She turns her head and sees that the clock on the shelf is blinking, meaning the electricity has come back on. Then she hears dishes clinking in the kitchen and knows that Maggie is up, cooking breakfast for her children and Rachel. Standing up, Rachel stretches and then winces because her muscles are unexpectedly sore. She wonders, as she quietly pads into the kitchen, if Maggie is going to be able to tell that Rachel's different now.
"Good morning, dear, did you sleep okay?" Maggie asks when Rachel enters.
No, Rachel thinks. I didn't sleep much at all because I was having sex with your son. "Yes, I did, thank you," she answers.
Maggie smiles brightly at her and Rachel realizes that her secret is safe. "Dear, you can go on up and take a shower if you'd like. Best get it in before Noah and Sarah get up because they're both hot water hogs. I've laid some towels out for you."
Rachel thanks her and slowly heads up the stairs, wincing slightly at the stiffness in her thighs. The hall is quiet when she reaches the top of the stairs and she's tempted – so tempted – to pop her head inside Noah's room. Does he sleep in clothes? Does he snore? Shaking her head to clear her thoughts, she lets herself into the bathroom and stares at her reflection in the mirror. She's smiling and the smile won't seem to leave her face. And she truly feels different now. She can't put her finger on why, exactly, but she knows she's different now. Older. Wiser. Definitely a woman.
She's just finished washing her face when the bathroom door opens and Puck is slipping in, his finger over his lips to indicate that Rachel should be quiet. Her heart pounds in her chest at seeing him and she remembers how, just hours before, he made her feel things she'd never felt before.
"Hi," he says sheepishly. He's still in just his pajama pants and his chest is bare and it makes her thoughts get even more jumbled than they already were. She thinks that it's funny that he told her she was beautiful when she thinks he's so beautiful. He's all bronzed skin and muscles and angles and hardness and together, it makes a package unlike any she's ever seen.
"Hi," she answers back. They stare at one another for a moment before Puck's hands are in her hair and his lips are on hers as he's pressing her against the bathroom wall. Rachel squeaks but the sounds are lost in her throat as the kiss intensifies.
When Puck pulls away to take a breath, Rachel closes her eyes and leans against the wall. "Your mother is going to catch us," she whispers.
"I know…but I wanted to make sure you were okay. Last night was fuckin' intense…" He brushes his hand across her cheek, the callus on his thumb from guitar-playing rough against her soft skin. She nods and then his lips are on hers again but this time, the kiss is soft. He sips from her mouth and she sips back and she can't help but wonder if this is how it's always supposed to feel. Kisses like this never happened with Jesse or even Finn. Sure, they kissed all the time but those kisses never made the top of her head tingle like it does every time Noah presses his lips to hers. Then again, she'd never shared the most intimate parts of herself with either one of those boys. When he pulls away, she looks down shyly but he pushes her chin up and puts his forehead against hers.
"We'll talk later, okay?"
She nods and bites her lip. There's so much she wants to ask because she's feeling so much right now. But even if she did speak, she's afraid her words would be jumbled and her thoughts disjointed. Maybe she does need a shower and some food to clear her head.
Puck pulls away from her and opens the door to sneak back out of the bathroom. Before he closes the door, he turns back to Rachel and says, "Hey Rach…thanks."
She wants to ask him "for what" but he closes the door before she can. Rachel shakes her head and then pulls off her clothes, stepping into the warm shower.
Once she's clean and her muscles are soothed, she gets dressed and heads downstairs. Puck and Sarah are standing at the door, pulling on boots and scarves.
"Rachel!" Sarah says excitedly. "We're going to play in the snow! Are you coming?"
Maggie walks into the room and says, "Breakfast is in twenty minutes, guys. You can play but get back inside soon!"
Puck shoves his hands in his pockets and looks at Rachel. "You coming?"
Rachel nods and grabs her coat and scarf and pulls them on. By the time she's ready, Puck and Sarah are already outside and are lobbing snowballs at one another. Puck is laughing and Sarah is screaming because he's relentlessly pelting her.
When Rachel steps off the porch and into the deep, heavy snow, she's immediately hit in the chest with a snowball. "Noah!" she screeches. He just laughs and then tosses another one at Sarah. Rachel wades through the deep snow to Sarah and the girls begin to plot a way to bring Puck down.
Minutes later, Sarah has distracted Puck and Rachel sneaks up behind him, a heavy snowball in her hand. Before he knows what's happening, Rachel has the snowball halfway down the back of his sweatpants. He swears and jumps up and down and Sarah falls into the snow, laughing so hard at her ridiculous brother that she starts to snort. Rachel can't help but laugh at Sarah's exuberance and then she's landing in the snow because Puck has pushed her into it. He lands on top of her and they laugh as the cold seeps through their clothes. Rachel meets Puck's eyes and she sees snowflakes clinging to his long lashes and she wants him to kiss her. Right then. She wants him to tell her that things are different now and that they're not going to be exactly like they were once the snow and ice melts and they head back to school. She wants to ask him why it happened at all. But when he doesn't do anything but stand up and put his arm out for her to pull herself up, she feels a little disappointed because she still doesn't have any answers. She still doesn't know what they are now and that doubt and worry fills her chest to the point where she wonders if she's going to be able to breathe. She knows that he doesn't regret what happened and that gives her a tiny iota of relief but she needs more. She feels like her entire life has changed and yet she's supposed to act like today is yesterday when she was still a virgin and she hadn't shared such a monumental moment with the boy who was now shoving snow down the back of his sister's coat.
"Kids! Breakfast!" Maggie calls from the porch, pulling Rachel from her thoughts.
The three make their way back in the house and take off their snow-covered coats. When they walk into the kitchen, Puck's eyes take in the stacks of pancakes on the table and she hears his stomach growl loudly. Rachel is standing at the table, her hands on the back of the chair while Maggie moves back and forth between the cabinets and the table, putting food out. Puck walks up to Rachel as she's standing there, slings his arm across her shoulder, and kisses her temple. Maggie watches the exchange and then smiles down into the biscuits she is currently buttering.
Rachel turns to look at Puck and he bends and kisses her on the lips quickly but soundly. Sarah watches the two of them and says, "Noah? Is Rachel your girlfriend?"
Rachel is waiting for Puck's explosion. He doesn't do girlfriends. They aren't his thing and everyone at McKinley knows that. The stuff he did last night? That's his thing.
"I dunno, Sarah," Puck says as he sits down at the table next to his sister. "I need to talk to Rachel about that. But if she wants to be, I think she should be."
Rachel's lips fall open and Puck grins before shoving a piece of pancake into his mouth. She pulls the chair across from him out and slides into it, confusion registering on her face. Puck nudges her leg with his foot under the table and she meets his eyes. He raises his eyebrows at her and she finds herself laughing because he's just so adorable. He swears too much and he's a complete pervert 97% of the time he's awake and he usually doesn't care too much about other people. But he's also handsome and talented and he makes her feel and think in ways that she never dreamed she could. And she thinks he does care about her. She knows, she has known, that she wants this. She wants him.
"So, Rachel, will you be Noah's girlfriend?" Sarah asks, clearly intrigued by this whole thing between her big brother and their houseguest.
Rachel takes a drink of her orange juice and tries to ignore the heat of Maggie's eyes boring into her. "I think, Sarah, that being Noah's girlfriend sounds like a pretty great thing to be."
Puck grins at her from across the table and she sees him relax in his chair. She wonders how in the world a winter storm resulted in her first losing her virginity and then becoming Noah Puckerman's girlfriend. The last 24 hours feels like something she's read in a book or maybe even seen in a movie but she knows, without a doubt, that it doesn't feel like her life. Later, though, when Sarah is upstairs playing and Maggie is in her bedroom on the phone with her mother and it's just Puck and Rachel in the living room, he's kissing her hard and pressing his body against her and telling her without words how much he wants her again.
"I swear I didn't mean to use my sister to ask you out," he says before he flicks the button of her shirt open so that he has a few more inches of exposed skin to kiss. "It just kinda happened that way." He's breathing against her skin and she nods because frankly, when his lips are touching her like that, she doesn't really care about anything else.
Her fingers thread through his short hair and she pulls his head up and kisses him on the lips. She knows now that nothing is like it was before. They're no longer going to do that stupid, nearly two-year long dance around one another. She's no longer going to watch and wish while he's oblivious. And if she admits to herself, she knows that he wasn't oblivious and hasn't been for a long time. He's been reading her signals and has danced around her just as much as she has around him. But for the first time, they're going to do this dance together and she can't bring herself to ask why now, at that time? Maybe she'll never know what changed between them or the reasons why it changed so fast and that's okay. All she can do is move forward on this new adventure and say silent thank you to Mother Nature for her hand in it all.