"Congratulations Finn. I heard were back on the football team and I am head cheerleader again. Nice symmetry, don't you think?" Quinn surprised Finn at his locker. She had to work very hard at not letting her eyes stray to the tiny brunette who was hovering outside of a classroom, listening to their conversation.
"I suppose." Finn shrugged happily though Quinn could tell that he did not really know what she was talking about. He probably thought symmetry was a baking ingredient.
"Well now that we have been restored to our rightful positions what do you say we give this another shot? Tonight, Breadsticks at 8?" She leaned forward ever so slightly as she looked up at him with hooded eyes.
"Quinn I am with Rachel now." The blonde could not tell if he was trying to convince her or himself. Quinn simply raised an elegant eyebrow at him asking, "And you still want to be with her?"
She could practically hear the gears in his head turning as he thought. She imagined what his internal monologue. Rachel is nice but the head cheerleader. She makes me cookies but the head cheerleader. She helps me with my homework but the head cheerleader. She is bossy, the head cheerleader. She does not let me touch her breasts, the head cheerleader. She is high maintenance, the head cheerleader…
"I will pick you up at 8." Finn finally decided with a goofy grin on his face but Quinn shook her head, "I will meet you there."
The tall boy just nodded in agreement, blissfully unaware of his surroundings as he shut his locker and headed off to class. Quinn took a deep breath, disappointment but thrilled at the same time. She started walking down the hallway then abruptly stopped when she reached Rachel. Quietly she addressed the girl, "He accepted my offer."
Rachel gasped painfully as if she had been struck. The brunette nearly collapsed but Quinn was there, holding her up and practically carrying her into the empty classroom. The diva began to cry in the head cheerleader's arms, her small hands grasping at the rough material of Quinn's Cheerios uniform. She burrowed her head into the blonde's strong shoulder as Quinn held the smaller girl tightly, rubbing soothing circles on her back.
"I thought- I thought that he- he loved-d me." Rachel exclaimed through her tears. Quinn shook her head sadly. She wanted Rachel to break up with Finn but still seeing her this hurt made it feel like her insides were falling out, "He only loves himself and his popularity. I am so sorry Rachel… I told you. I told you no can love you like I can."
The brunette looked up sharply at her. Her eyes were red and watery, her brow wrinkled in pain, her lips twisted in a pout and yet she was the most beautiful person Quinn had ever laid her eyes on.
"I don't know Quinn…" Rachel was confused. Her boyfriend had essentially dumped her for the girl that was now holding her close and claiming her undying love for her. Quinn understood. She would be conflicted too. She knew she should be backing off but she could not manage to let the petite diva go.
"I know I have hurt you Rachel and I regret every moment of it. Please, please let me replace each slushie and tear with a happy memory and a kiss." Quinn practically begged. The smaller girl's eyes glazed over and the blonde knew she was thinking back to their encounter in the bathroom the day before.
Quinn had been stalking through the hallway, enjoying the way that people cowered and dodged her in fear, when she heard distinct crying coming from the girls restroom. Instinctively she knew it was Rachel and before she could stop herself she was quietly entering the bathroom. As she expected she saw Rachel standing at the sinks, her head bowed as she wept so that her hair fell around her face, obscuring it. Quinn's heart pounded painfully in her chest with each sob that emitted from the distraught girl. The head cheerleader noticed that she had thankfully changed out of that ridiculously sexy Britney Spears outfit and was now wearing an adorable polka dotted dress. She thought she was going to have to beat up the entire football team if one of them some much as leered at the diva one more time.
Rachel lifted her head and jumped at the sight of Quinn in the mirror. Their eyes locked as she asked, "What do you want Quinn?"
Her voice was not harsh or angry, just infinitely sad.
"I heard crying- Are you okay?" Quinn asked taking a careful step toward Rachel. She was desperately trying to resist the urge to scoop the short girl up in her arms and never let go and when Rachel turned around the feeling only intensified.
"Why would you care? Don't you hate me?" Rachel asked softly but Quinn still flinched at the question. The truth was she cared. She cared a lot. After all the drama and strife of last year Quinn emerged a stronger, better person with one realization: She was head-over-heels in love with Rachel Berry. All of her efforts to hate the spoiled prima donna crumbled as she had to deal with being a homeless, pregnant teenager and she finally had to accept her feelings for the brunette star. She remembered back to the first grade when she met the pint-sized Rachel Berry and instantly being enamored with her. But even then, she knew that Rachel represented everything she was supposed to hate. She was short and a know-it-all, Jewish, with two sinning fathers… None of that mattered any more to Quinn. The blonde loved the diva's petite frame, her determination, her voice, her righteous conviction and overuse of the ACLU. It was all too late though. Quinn burned that bridge with Rachel a long time ago when she first pushed her in the sandbox followed by years of pushing her away with horrible names and slushies and then turning down her offer of friendship. But Quinn would be damned if she lost this opportunity now.
"I don't hate you Rachel. I- we are teammates. That is what teammates do, support each other, right?" Quinn spoke the words Rachel first said to her when she found out she was pregnant. This made Rachel cry harder as she threw her arms around Quinn's neck like she were her lifeline. The blonde caught her easily, slipping her arms around her waist and holding her small frame tightly against her own.
"Oh Quinn, I don't know what to do. I know I should not ask Finn to quit the football team but with him being popular, all these girls… I cannot compete! He has already left me once, what is to stop him from doing it again? I changed back to my normal clothes so he was more comfortable but he is not even willing to consider doing this for me." Rachel lamented into Quinn's shoulder.
"Finn is an idiot. He does not know how lucky he is to have you." Quinn discretely played the chestnut locks that lay on her chest.
"You mean it?" Rachel pulled back enough to look Quinn in the eyes.
"Of course. Rachel you are beautiful, talented, and passionate. He does not deserve you… You know, I- I would quit the Cheerios for you." Quinn suddenly admitted.
"Quinn?" Rachel questioned the rather out of place comment but did not move away. The blonde looked down at the confused girl, debating on whether or not it was a good idea to continue but then it all came tumbling out, "I would. I would do it to make you feel safe. I would give up cheerleading, my popularity, my family, to be with you. I love you more than anyone else could."
"Quinn you are not making any sense." Rachel stepped out of her arms.
"Rachel, I have only just begun to see things clearly and I have realized that I love you." Quinn confessed softly. The dramatic girl's jaw dropped.
"That is impossible. I mean you have spent our entire childhood tormenting me." Rachel practically shouted. Quinn shook her head, "And I am so sorry for that Rachel-"
"Stop calling me Rachel! Call me Man-hands or Stubbles. You are confusing me." Rachel interrupted her, rubbing her temples as she tried to regain control of the situation.
"No, no, no. I should have been calling you Sweetheart, Princess, Goddess-divine! I have been so stupid denying my feelings for you. I was too immature, too ignorant to realize the perfection in front of my face." Quinn spoke passionately leaving Rachel shocked and torn between what she could have with Quinn and what she had with Finn.
"Quinn, I am not going to deny that I am attracted to you and find you very persuasive but I am currently in a relationship with Finn." Rachel recited as if she had been practicing it in her head.
"I know." Quinn said sadly but still took a step forward, her hand reaching out and gently cupping Rachel's cheek. "Let me prove it to you. Let me prove I am better for you than Finn."
Rachel subconsciously leaned into the touch, her eyes fluttering shut, "You know, I do not really want Finn to quit the football team. I would not let him quit something he loves so much… I just wanted him to choose me. I wanted to be more important to him."
Her voice was small and hurt. Quinn let her other hand reach out and lightly grasp Rachel's hip, "Please, let me prove it to you. Let me love you."
"Why should I trust you?" Rachel whispered, her lips trembling. The question stung Quinn but the blonde had to admit that it was not unwarranted.
"I have nothing to offer you accept my love. I wish I could give you more but it is just a leap of faith." Quinn began to lean in with her eyes trained on the diva's full lips. Rachel knew that she was about to kiss her.
"Quinn… I am with Finn." Rachel reminded the head cheerleader but her body was completely surrendered to her touch.
"I know. I was hoping to help you forget that." Quinn smirked and before Rachel could protest any further she gently pressed her lips to the brunette's. Quinn felt that she was on fire from the small contact. Her heart soared as Rachel's lips slowly began to move against her own. She decided to press her luck as she ran tongue across the diva's lower lip. The brunette whimpered and opened her mouth to Quinn, her tongue meeting with the cheerleader's. The taller girl moaned into her mouth as their tongues danced together. Quinn did not realize that she was advancing on the petite brunette until Rachel ran into the sink. The impact startled the diminutive diva so that she pulled her mouth away from Quinn.
"I am not a cheater Quinn." Rachel sounded upset.
"I know. I am sorry. I should not have kissed you." Quinn was immediately apologetic, "But please let me show you I am better than Finn."
The blonde took a step back to prove that she was giving Rachel room to decide. The shorter girl looked up at her though her expression was unreadable, "How?"
"Leave it to me. Just be outside the classroom near Finn's locker before Glee practice." Quinn told her. Rachel regarded her for a moment, clearly thinking, "Okay."
Rachel finally said as she nodded slowly, "Okay."
And with that Rachel slipped out of the bathroom.
"Rachel?" Quinn called to the girl, trying to regain her attention. Rachel snapped back to reality as she realized where she was.
"We are going to be late for Glee." She said simply, wiping her eyes, trying to erase the evidence of tears.
"Rachel…" Quinn said her name like a plea.
"Just… give me time Quinn." Rachel asked sounding a little desperate.
"Alright." Quinn agreed and she followed the brunette to rehearsal. Rachel ignored Finn as she entered the room opting to sit with Quinn in the front much to the blonde's delight. They waited until Mr. Shuester arrived and unsurprisingly Rachel immediately raised her hand.
"Yes Rachel?" Mr. Shue asked confused seeing as practice had not even started yet.
"I have a song prepared for this class." Rachel almost sounded timid.
"Rachel I appreciate your enthusiasm for Britney but I just do not think that she fits our style." The teacher tried to stop any more sex riots that tended to break out when Rachel performed Britney Spears music.
"Actually it is from last weeks assignment. Adult contemporary though it is more young adult." Rachel informed him.
"Oh well, in that case, take it away." Mr. Shue offered Rachel the floor. The petite diva handed her music to the band and stood in front of the class simply stating, "I would like to dedicate this song to my boyfriend Finn."
Everyone in the class looked back at the boy who smiled sheepishly as the guitar started off the song. Rachel's voice floated over the music, "Father I've sinned, over and over and over and over again, sorry my friends, I'm such a mess, I'm doing the best I can. She says where ya goin'? where ya been? She says I don't want you hanging out with them."
Her voice got suddenly angrier and louder, "She leaves like she's never coming back again on and on… it goes on and on YEA!"
"She says, I don't love you like I loved you before. She says, she says, I don't love you anymore!" Rachel glared bitterly at the surprised football player her voice falling soft again, "and mother I've tried over and over and over and over to open my eyes, look at my life, tell me when I die, cause I'm not alive, flip through the script and tell me what is says, skip through the story tell me how it ends, she says that we're better off as friends, on and on and… YEA!"
"She says, I don't love you like I lover you before," Rachel sang to Finn tears began to prick her eyes, "She says, she say… YEA! She says, I don't love you, I don't love you anymore. She says, she say, I don't love you, I don't love you, I don't love you anymore."
The rest of the class had picked up the song chanting along with Rachel, "She says she says she says where ya going, I know I know I know I know I know."
"What I want!" Rachel sang out of the chorus of voices drawing attention back to her so her voice began quiet again, "you… you called the police, you called them on me, and I want to go anywhere but home. I… I'm done listening to what's wrong with me, cause it goes on and on and on and on YEA!"
"She says, I don't love you like loved you before," Tears dripped down the brunette's face now, "She says, she say… YEA! She says, I don't love you. I don't love you anymore. She says, she says, "I don't love like I love you anymore."
The class was stunned silent as Rachel gave her strong emotional finish. It was like Gives You Hell all over again as Finn squirmed uncomfortable with the club witnessing another break up from the odd couple. Quinn could barely contain her smile as Rachel took her seat next to her. She put her arm loosely around the still upset diva. The brunette just leaned into her taller frame accepting the comfort it provided. The rest of the members just watched in shock at the interaction between Quinn and Rachel while Finn sent them hurt looks.
The head cheerleader ignored them all content to have Rachel in her arms. The brunette leaned forward so that her lips hung near Quinn's ear, "I am not ready to say I love you or anything but I want to try this with you."
Quinn's smile grew heard what Rachel whispered to her. She murmured quietly to her, "I understand. We will take it slow."
"Thank you Quinn." Rachel sighed as she rested her head on the Cheerio's shoulder.
"I love you Rachel." Quinn told her quietly. The diva did not respond verbally but her lip twitched upward and she relaxed into the blonde more and that was enough for Quinn at the moment.