Title: Subtext

Pairing: Brittany/Santana

Rating: T for minor language and lesbian subtext.

Spoilers: 2x04, Duets.

Description: Based around the short scene at the beginning of the episode. Brittany's inward reaction to Santana, and the subtext of her physical reactions. I overanalyzed this more than I ought to. Short, one shot.

"I love your sweet lady kisses."

It's not the first time I've said this. It's not the second or third. Chances are, maybe not soon, I'll say it again. But this time feels different. For both of us, I guess. She's laying with the top half of her body draped across mine, her arms tucked between us. Like there's a line she's trying to keep herself from crossing, and the only way to do it is to make sure we're never completely comfortable. She presses her nose into my neck and I can feel her smirk. My left hand is wrapped around her shoulder and hangs there, weightless in her hair as she sighs deeply into my collarbone. It sends a familiar shiver down my spine, the kind no boy at school has ever given me. She lifts her head, hair still in perfect order despite my fingers running through it, and there's the smirk.

"Mmhmm. It's a nice break from all that scissoring."

Her lips are always cool, as though the thick coating of sarcasm she slathers on them like balm also serves to lower her body temperature. But her eyes are smiling, genuine in the sentiment. She likes this, this time we share when we're alone in my room. She likes it just as much as I do, but she would never admit it if confronted. She avoids doing that now by pressing those cool lips against my cheek, so close to my own lips but never actually touching them. That's too much, she says. It's one thing for her to kiss my cheek, my neck, my earlobes… other places. But she says mouth-kissing is just for boys. I try turning into her kiss, but she very subtly turns her head at the last moment, thinking I don't notice.

I do notice.

I do my best not to be disappointed every time she gets close then pulls away, but we've been doing this dance for almost a year now. Tonight, in my bed, as she kisses her way down my cheek to my neck, I feel the weight of that year sitting on my chest. Things could go on as they are until graduation, and neither of us would argue. We'd stay silent; she because of the fear of what this might mean, I because of the fear of losing her. She won't confront this. Not without a push.

"We should do a duet together. We should sing Melissa Ethridge's 'Come to My Window'."

I'm half kidding, and she knows it. But I'm pushing a button now. She can't ignore me without allowing me to take it as her acceptance of the suggestion, and she can't tell me no without telling me why. Her tongue is in my ear now, and I can tell she's trying to silence me with her wiles. She's very good at this, and every guy at school has fallen for it. But I know her too well, and I can tell that each flick against my lobe is an attempt to make the talking stop, make the reality an illusion for just a little while longer. I'm not that smart; I don't know that much about a lot of stuff. But I know Santana, and she's terrified right now.

"First of all, there's a lot of talking going on, and I wantz to get mah mack on."

She looks down at me, her eyes narrowed as she holds herself above me on wobbly arms. I'm breaking through, and she's fighting it. She goes back to her duties, running those lips over my neck again like a knife, threatening to gut me if I push any further. My hand is on the small of her back, holding her to me as I feel her pulling away. I know she's getting physically closer, but her mind is closing off. Her eyes are open, watching me as she drags those razor lips across my jugular, daring me.

"Well, I dunno, I just, maybe-"

Her head snaps away so quickly that I reach up and brush my neck with the back of my hand, checking for blood. I feel the sting of her hair as it swipes my fingers, and her back is to me before I have a chance to protest.

"Second of all, I'm not making out with you because I'm in love with you and want to sing about making lady babies."

There's nothing to say now. She's done. We've had this sort of argument before, if you could call it an argument. I make a comment, and she shuts down. It really doesn't matter how benign or innocent it might be; she's so in her own head that she thinks I'm constantly airing our business in public. I know she doesn't want anyone to know what we're doing. She didn't speak to me for a week after I accidentally told the Glee kids we were sleeping together over the phone. But I can't help bringing it up. My existence is entirely embroiled in hers. When she isn't around, I don't know how to function. I'm lost. Sometimes literally.

I roll onto my side and watch her put her hair back up into her signature ponytail, dragging her nails angrily through the locks to pull it into a tight knot at the back of her head.

"I'm only here because Puck's been in the slammer for about 12 hours now, and I'm like a lizard. I need something warm beneath me or I can't digest my food."

She's being cruel, and I know it's my fault. I shouldn't have pushed. I stare at the pattern in my quilt and count the stitches while she fumes. I have to leave her alone if she's going to forgive me any time soon. That means I have to let her rampage for a while. It means I have to watch her take her anger out on everyone else, too. It means she'll probably find a football player after practice tomorrow and fuck him in the back of his pickup.

It means I'll be alone for a while.

"But who are you gonna sing a duet with?"

Her answer doesn't really matter. "Not you," is all I'm going to hear. She knots her hair and stands up, flattening her Cheerios uniform down over her stomach, wiping away any remnants of me from her body. She looks back over her shoulder, those lips pursed tight in anger. I know she doesn't really hate me, but her face says otherwise. I wince. Her eyes are hurt, like mine. Like she knows she's wrong, but she can't fix things. She can't fix herself, change the way she responds to me. The way we fit together. The only way she knows how to live with it is to fight it, hide from it, and alienate it when it gets too real. And I have to live there with her.

Because I don't know how not to.