A.N: I have…no idea where this came from. It's probably the effect of chocolate withdrawal and having way too much time on my hands. Yes, I know I should be working on Jigsaw Pieces right now, but I've hit a spot of writer's block, unfortunately. Then I stumbled upon the puckrachel drabble meme on LJ and just like that…I was hooked. This is sort of an exercise to get myself out of this uninspired funk I've found myself in.
Taken from the following prompt: "This is exactly why people think you're crazy. You know that, right?"
I hope you all enjoy reading this!
Step by Step
So, it goes without saying that his life right now? Totally awesome.
After the crapfest in Sophomore year that started with Glee Club and ended with giving his baby girl away to a 'nice' couple from Cinci who had the white picket fence and everything else Quinn and him couldn't give her, things are finally looking up. Dude—he's finally done with high school and he's getting out of this crappy cow town and headed to New York.
Plus, he's gonna be there with his equally awesome girlfriend. Somewhere along the way, Rachel Berry had managed to babble her way into his life, show him that beyond the sweaters and all the crazy, she was actually a pretty cool chick, and do a lot of weird and funny things to the heart he always swore he didn't have. Things had snowballed from there, and now, they're both headed to NYU.
It's pretty unreal, sometimes, how he got this far. But it's all good.
They're set to leave in a couple days, so he's been pretty busy packing and stuff. Not that there's a lot to pack—he's living in a dorm room so it's not like he can bring everything, and besides, he really doesn't need much apart from some clothes and his guitar. But whatever. Point is, he hasn't seen his girl in awhile, so he figures he'll stop by her house for awhile.
Her dads (Puck still finds it weird that they like him, you know, since the first time Rachel introduced him as her boyfriend was after her dads had caught them making out in her bed) tell him that Rachel's in her room and to just go on up. They're both smiling in a funny way, like they're really, really amused about something, but Puck just shrugs it off and goes upstairs.
Her door is wide open, so he just walks in. And the moment he sees it, he stops in his tracks.
Rachel's not in the room. There are plenty of boxes on her floor, some sealed, some opened, all of them labeled. Her bed's piled with clothes, and the open closet is almost empty. Which, you know, isn't really weird, considering that they're leaving and everything. What is weird is the fact that his girlfriend's pretty much papered her bedroom walls with different colored Post-its and papers, all of them filled with writing.
Seriously. There are so many of them he legit can't see the wall anymore.
He rips the nearest Post-it from the wall. First Things First: What to Do Upon Arriving in My Dorm Room. It's a pretty detailed list, and her handwriting's pretty fucking tiny. One of the things written there is "Make friends with roommate—see separate list."
Separate list? What the—Puck sticks the Post-it back on the wall and looks at the one beside it. How to Get Roommate to Like Me. It's a seven-step list, including things like, "bake roommate 'Welcome to NYU' cookies" and "refrain from playing Broadway songs at ear-splitting volume every night."
"What the fuck, Rachel?" Puck mutters to himself as he looks at all the colorful lists of step-by-step crazy. Which is kinda ironic (shut up, he did learn something in high school), considering she even has a Show People I'm Not Crazy memo. There are other things too, like reminders on what to pack, what outfit to wear on the first day (he's definitely talking to her about that one. There's no way he's letting his girl walk the streets of New York in that black skirt), a short-list of songs she's going to sing in class, and another short-list for ones that she'll use in auditions. There's even a memo that states "Identify the best singer in class and be friendly with her. PS: Keep friends close, keep potential rivals closer."
There's also a list of Things to Do Before Leaving Lima. Puck almost chokes on air when he sees, "Assure dads that Noah and I will be safe when having sex" on the list.
"Noah!" It's Rachel's voice that makes him look up to see her coming out of the adjoining bathroom. She walks over to him and gives him a quick peck on the lips, after which he pulls her back for a proper kiss, because 'pecks' are not badass and always remind him of birds, and that shit just does not fly with the Puckerone.
"Hi," she says after finally pulling away, all breathless and flushed and he can't help but think, yeah. He's the man. "What are you doing here?"
"Nothing," he replies with a shrug. "Just wanted to see you, that's all." His hands are on her waist and her back is pressed against his chest as his eyes take in the sight again."Baby?"
"Hmm?" Rachel murmurs, leaning her head comfortably against his chest.
"Why the hell does your bedroom look like paper rainbows puked on it?"
She pulls away from him and faces him with an eye roll. "These are just some checklists and reminders of things that need to be done. I do this every time I undergo a major transition in my life—it's extremely important to be prepared. I find that writing things down helps me remember everything, and seeing them in print keeps me focused enough to accomplish the task. See," she points to one section of the room, "I've even color-coded them accordingly. The blue Post-its are for things I need to do before I leave, the pink ones are for our actual travel, and the yellow—"
It's probably a testament (again, shut up) to how much time he's spent with her when he manages to understand everything that comes out of her mouth, especially when she's talking like she's on Vitamin D again. Add that to the fact that whenever he's sure he's seen and mastered all the craziness Rachel has to offer, she finds some way to show him a whole new level and he actually finds the whole thing weirdly adorable…well…
You can't really blame a guy for laughing.
Rachel huffs, folding her arms, her bottom lip jutting out in a pout (yeah, it's actually pretty cute. No question about it: he's definitely whipped.) "Noah," she says dangerously, "I don't appreciate you laughing at my expense."
Shit, she looks serious. He tugs her back to him again and wraps his arms around her. "Sorry, Rach," he tells her, but he's still grinning anyway. "But…this is exactly why people think you're crazy. You know that, right?"
She huffs again. "I'm incredibly offended by that statement."
It's a bit distracting to focus on her being mad at him when he can see right down her shirt, but he manages to say, "Look, don't get me wrong; it's actually pretty cool, in a weird but cute kind of way. And there's nothing wrong with making lists and junk. It'll probably suck if you forgot something majorly important. But I'm just saying, you don't need to do it for everything—sometimes it's a lot more fun if you just wing it."
"But," she protests, although it's a weak one. "There's no harm in being prepared. You never know what situation you'll end up in."
It's on the tip of his tongue to make a joke about condoms, but he stops himself (see? It's like personal growth or something.) So he just says, "There's being prepared and there's being completely batshit. Like when you're making friends and stuff, you don't need a guide for that. Just be the awesome cool chick I know, and tone down the psycho-competitiveness, and you'll be golden."
"Oh," he says, dropping his tone down to a whisper, "and you definitely don't need to mention to your dads that we'll be having sex. They'd probably bury me alive."
She giggles then, but he can definitely sense some eye-rolling going on. "You're being overdramatic," she tells him as she lets herself out of his hold and faces him again. Gesturing to the lists, Rachel says with a sigh, "I suppose it is a bit much. I just…I guess I'm just nervous."
"About what?" he asks, honestly confused. "You've got a killer voice, and more importantly, you've got me. We're so awesome together that we're gonna make NYU and the rest of the city our bitch."
Rachel can't help it; she laughs. When that dies down, she gives him this beautiful, glowing kind of smile, like he's just handed her a Tony or something. He feels that weird kick in his stomach when he sees it, and seriously, it's almost scary how much he loves this girl.
"Oh, and for the record," he tells her, "I actually dig your brand of crazy." That's all it takes for her to launch herself into his arms and kiss him deeply. Yep, he's pretty awesome when it comes to this boyfriend thing.
"Noah?" she asks after they break apart.
"What am I going to do with the lists I made for you?"
His eyes widen.