Pairing: Quinn/Rachel
Spoilers: Anything up to…end of Season Two...?
Rated: R for language

A/N: Well…still Unbeta'd. I'll catch the errors later in the evening when the magically become obvious to me. I can only imagine the number of missing quotes etc. Sorry in advance!

A/N: I have been very long absent. I know. I'm sorry! Just a really long stretch of work and new job and all my creative writing cells were too tired to do anything but nap at the end of my days. Thank you EVERYone who has reviewed or checked on me. And sorry for the long wait. I had some of it done a long time ago, but by the time I got back to it, the muse who had been driving thus far pretty much said WTF was your plan? So…I actually reread the entire thing the other day (I don't know about all you writers out there…but I find rereading anything I write terribly anxiety producing, which is probably why my proofreading is so bad). So… trying to get my groove back… bear with me? In the meantime, time for the some of the other characters to intereact for a bit. I do hope to update on Sundays now...

#####

Quinn was swept along by the two Cheerios. Her mind alternated between racing wildly and looking for an escape, and stuttering to a complete halt. She was caught and she had no idea what to do. She needed a minute. She needed to extricate herself from her self-appointed ushers for the day. She would have gladly latched onto Sam had he been in the hallway at this point, and she'd just spent the weekend dodging him.

Such was her desperation. The bathrooms were just around the corner. That would work.

"Hey guys, Wait. I can't… I just need. I have to you know…"

Brittany just tilted her head quizzically, but her other self-appointed escort eyed her suspiciously.

"Uh no, what Q? You have to…ditch school? Run like a scared little girl? Miss a test? Nice try."

"No, jackass. I have to pee. Wanna come and make sure? Creeper much?"

Brittany nodded her head. "She's probably just nervous about her test, San. You know how she gets before competitions."

It was true. Quinn had amazing stamina when it came to Cheerios, but apparently a ridiculously small bladder. Brown eyes stayed narrow. "Okay. You wanna keep an eye on Teacup here B?" The taller blond nodded as Santana turned a smiled sickly sweet at her captain. It was a look that that clearly called 'bullshit' on the Quinn's duck and cover drill.

Quinn held up her hands in fists and 'cheered' in a mocking whisper. "Yaaaay. Another stalker." She quirked her lips into a sarcastic smile and flipped her the bird.

Santana was not impressed."You wish Q."

Quinn shook her head, pretending to look sad. This was all familiar territory and it was easing her mind somewhat. "I knew I shouldn't have given you that teaser show in the showers."

Santana's jaw dropped a little indignation before shut it closed and glared as Quinn smirked.

Brittany bounced up and down."Guys. Please? Come on. I really do have to pee now."

"Coming Britts." Quinn's saccharin smile didn't fool Santana.

Santana cocked her head in a pretend thoughtful look. "I'll just head on into class then, you know, catch up with your tasty little Oompaloompa."

#####

The minute she entered a stall, replete with graffiti and phone numbers Quinn hauled out her phone and texted as fast as she had ever texted in her life.

Quinn: Rach. Heads up! Santana knows. So sorry. Just keep your head down. Don't react.

#####

Rachel was just getting settled into her seat before class. She'd kept her daily meet-up with Finn at her locker short, rushing off to go over notes she told him. He looked pouty at that, but didn't grumble too much. Everything else aside, she wasn't in the mood to placate him today.

She finished checking her calendar on her phone making sure she had a handle on this week's schedule. She felt-well prepared for the test. She was trying to figure out if she had time to get everything done over the long weekend. There were tests after the break as well. Satisfied, she put it away and prepared to focus.

The sounds of Mercedes and Kurt arriving caused her to look up. Normally on Monday morning, she was happy to see the duo, catch up on their weekend. But this wasn't every Monday.

She looked up at them, eyes overly bright and friendly, not sure what exactly either one of them knew or had pieced together. She didn't like the less than subtle appraising looking she was getting from them independently, or the fact that the animated talk all but ceased as they moved towards her. Kurt was slightly more subtle, but Mercedes was looking at her with a particularly thoughtful look. The fact that she shook her head violently like she was shaking off an unpleasant thought was something very less than comforting, and she could feel herself beginning to flush. Quickly she turned back to her notes on Mary Shelley.

"Hey Rachel. How did the rest of your weekend go? Anything special?" Mercedes recovered her aplomb and greeted her, nice, smooth and cheery.

Rachel took in Kurt's quick snap of the head to his fellow gossip and the shark look he was leveling at her.

Rachel cleared her throat and looked to Mercedes. "I had a…lovely weekend, study included." She noted Kurt looking at her again now, like his wheels were already turning.

Crap. Crap Crap Crap.

She cleared her throat and rearranged the supplies on her desk as she looked up and tried to redirect.

"How about you two? Kurt, did Finn and your dad like the baked chicken, cauliflower mashed potatoes and roasted asparagus?"

Mercedes harrumphed and looked at her friend. "That all sounds good. Except the baked part. Would it kill you to make a little fried chicken?"

Kurt gave her a blank, but still sardonic look. "Besides the obvious detriment to everyone's T-Zones? Uh. Yeah. It might not kill ME, but the idea is for dad to live longer."

Mercedes looked chagrined. "Oh. Yeah, you're right, sorry. My bad." She looked at Rachel who was nodding in agreement with Kurt.

"Anyway. Dad seemed to like it pretty well. Seems Finn got a little lonely since you all but ditched him for dinner. He called over Puck and those two scarfed it all down with their usual vigor after I expounded on the nutrients and vitamins course."

Rachel blanched as he straightened up and gave her a bright smile. "So Rachel! Finn will do muy bueno, si?"

"I think Finn will do just fine. He just needed a few pointers. And maybe a study chaperone."

Mercedes waited until Kurt put down his messenger bag to catch Rachel's eye. She arched her eyebrows meaningfully and placed her finger next to her nose and pointed at her subtly.

Rachel stared back, brows furrowed. Mercedes cocked and eyebrow and stared back. She leaned close and whispered. "He isn't the only one who needs a study chaperone, now is he?"

She groaned inwardly. As far as she was concerned it wouldn't be long before Jacob Ben-Israel would be shoving a microphone in her face looking for comments on her sudden return to Social Siberia. Because surely if these two knew, it was inevitable. 'Gay for Fabray' spray-painted on her locker was destined to become a reality. Well-meaning or not, she just didn't believe her friends could keep their mouths shut forever.

She dropped her head and let it knock against her desk.

She looked at her and mouthed the words "we need to talk." She opened her notebook and mouthed back. "Mmm hmm."

And if she was going to talk to Mercedes, she was probably going to have to talk to her fellow gossip monger.

Turning to Kurt who was primly arranging his cravat, she whispered. "We need to talk." He finished his straightening, glanced at Mercedes then back to her "I thought you'd never ask, ma Cherie."

She crossed and uncrossed her legs, while Kurt and Mercedes watched her nervously tap her eraser on her desk in a very un-Rachel-but-very-Finn-like-way. They eyed each other all the while, trying to gauge what the other knew.

Meanwhile, still tapping away, Rachel took a deep breath and sat up straight at her desk, glancing around the room, trying to not look obvious that she was looking for a certain blonde.

The short vibration of her phone in her backpack startled her, and the pencil went flying in a terrifying and magnificent arc over her head. She turned to see it flip and land right in front of a smirking Santana.

Of course. Because I need to deal with Santana today.

The Cheerio smiled slowly and deliberately as she bent over to pick it up. She sauntered over with it. Rachel was not at all comfortable with the gleam in her teammate's eyes.

"Here you go."

"Thank you Santana." She tried to keep from looking overtly suspicious as she reached for the pencil. But she wasn't at all surprised to find an admonishing finger waved in front of her at the last moment. "Not so fast Tater."

Of course that would have been too easy. She groaned inwardly and her gut started to twist. She sat back waiting to see what the mercurial Cheerio was up to. "Tater?" She queried. "That one is new."

The Latina grinned, pleased with herself. "As in Tots. Those ridiculously small misbegotten lumps of starch. You know, no right-thinking person would actually want them, am I right?" She looked at Mercedes and Kurt for confirmation. They didn't know what she was up to, but Kurt nodded in agreement. Mercedes shrugged non-comittally. Santana started to hand over the pencil over with an arched brow. But again, surprising to no one, she pulled it back and tapped it to her chin thoughtfully. "And yet? For reasons passing my understanding, some people apparently find them…tasty."

Rachel shrunk down in her chair. Shit. She knows.

She knows something of some sort, or she is just fishing. But where exactly was she going with this? "Well, I can't imagine they are a particularly healthy snack, but at least they are vegetarian..."

The Cheerio smacked her hand down on one of the occupied desks next to Rachel and gave the current surrounding occupants a look. "Find another place to cop one, squatters" The seats cleared out magically as the girls who normally sat there wisely evacuated. Santana slid lithely into the desk nearest Rachel, still in possession of the pencil, smirking like nobody's business.

"Vegetarian? Eh, you can tell yourself that, but really who knows what goes into Tots? Maybe they are veg, maybe they're not. The point is…oh, B, there you are." Brittany had poked her head into the classroom. "Q with you?"

"Here she is S." Quinn gave Santana a nasty look as she passed the bouncy blonde. "Thanks B. See you later. I'll watch the soap in the showers, no worries."

Santana smirked. "Ah, there she is. Please do have a seat, Q. I cleared some space for you."

Quinn's eyes narrowed dangerously On the one hand, she didn't like being told where to sit by Santana. On the other hand, she didn't dare leave her alone with Rachel. Pasting a bored look on her face, she put her books down and sat down, listening. There wasn't much else she could do at the moment and she knew it.

Kurt and Mercedes watched with rapt attention as Santana continued.

"Yep. I was just telling Rachel here about tiny little Tater Tots. You know, as weird as it is, some people can't keep their hands off them." She ignored the glare she was getting, continuing to talk. "I mean, if say…Quinn here had to choose between oh...I don't know...a Tater Tot and say….a good old fashioned fresh off the shelf golden Twinkie? You'd think Twinkie, am I right?"

"S…" Quinn hissed.

Rachel's jaw opened and snapped shut again, her eyes searching out Quinn, who gave her a sympathetic but ultimately helpless look.

"What? I'm was just going to tell Berry here that I happen know that you have been known indulge in that dwarf sized snack that dare not speak their name. Haven't you? It's alright. Don't be ashamed. After all, we all have our vices. Which is why I know how many licks it takes to get to the center of a Tootsie Pop..."

Quinn grit her teeth."Santana, drop it."

"Aw, I'm just playing with you. Don't get your panties in a twist Q." She turned dropped the No. 2 pencil in front of the brunette and rolled it lightly. "Here ya go Tot…"

Rachel sat up straight, keeping her face neutral as she picked it up and put it neatly next to her notepad. "Thank you Santana."

Out of the corner of her eye, she saw Quinn shrug at her with apology on her face. She acknowledged it with a terse smile.

It was going to be a long day.

#####

When that class mercifully ended Quinn bent close to whispered quickly, breathing into her ear. "I texted you to warn you she knew, sorry."

Rachel sighed and looked at her arm "I see. I thank you, but I'm afraid I didn't get it in time." She looked up ruefully, but with a little humor. "And watch my ear. After all it, it is how we got in this mess."

Quinn looked at the prickled skin on Rachel's arm, and bit her lip, not sure how to take the comment."Sorry? About the…mess."

Rachel noted the worry in the hazel eyes, and couldn't help but grin a little lop-sidedly "Oh, not complaining really."

Quinn couldn't quite keep the smile from forming at the reassurance. She jerked her head towards the door where Santana was waiting, grinning smugly. "Well if it's any consolation, I think this is actually Santana being nice. Ish. I don't think she is going to do more than be a pain in the ass about it. Brittany will keep her in line."

She smaller girl sighed, "Brittany knows too?" She rubbed her eyes. She had no doubt that whatever else may come, she was going to be Santana's entertainment for the foreseeable future.

#####

And so the rest of the day went.

Rachel had been a blur between morning classes and they'd had very little interaction. When Quinn finally thought she'd get a chance to talk to her relatively alone, Coach Sylvester had waylaid her in the hall and so she was late to the one class they had together by themselves. The seat next to Rachel was already taken by the time she got there. She caught Rachel's eyes and gave a small smile before pulling out her phone.

Quinn: Hey. you okay?

Rachel: Me? Oh just peachy. Or toasty. Like a Tater Tot apparently…
Quinn: eh ...yeah, sorry about that. Santana is...Santana
Rachel: I know. I just don't like being …pushed.
Quinn: I know. I'll try to put a muzzle on it.
Rachel: Thanks. :)
Quinn: Ah, a smile. First one I've seen on you all day.
Rachel: Really? I didn't know you were watching :)

Quinn smiled wistfully herself before replying.

Quinn: Rachel, I've always been watching. Just for different reasons before.

Rachel paused, and smiled again as she tapped out a facetious reply.

Rachel: My very own stalker? Sweet.
Quinn: lol, they're over-rated.
Rachel: What?
Quinn: j/k. S and B are my personal stalkers today. Don't ask.
Rachel: Santana is stalking you too? Lucky us. And here I just thought I was special.

Quinn stopped. She shook her head at herself, annoyed that she was about to do something so ridiculous sappy. And she couldn't seem to stop herself.

Quinn: You are.
Rachel: I am what?
Quinn: Sigh. Can I say that coy is not becoming on you.

She shook her head, resigned, and sent the text. She couldn't NOT send the text.

Do it… do it do it do it. Do it!
I was unaware the resident guttersnipe had a romantic side.
Well if it gets us all wrapped up in those legs again? Do it…
Ah, I knew it was too good to be true.

Quinn: Can't believe I'm doing this. You are special.
Rachel: :D I know that about killed you. Thank you. ; )

The brunette tried to smile at her, but Quinn wouldn't look at her for a minute. But she texted back.

Quinn: Yeah yeah. I'm going soft.
Rachel: Well I have reason to know you are indeed quite soft…

Quinn's head shot up wide-eyed and she looked over at that, Rachel giggled.

Quinn: Behave…

What did I tell you? Would I steer you wrong?
Jury is still out on that.

They had to stop texting while the teacher went over the latest handout and class was almost over anyway.

#####

Rachel kept her usual lunch meeting with Finn. He looked rumpled and sometimes slightly disgruntled, at least from afar. Quinn couldn't help but watch them out of the corner of her eye. She tried to pay at least nominal attention to Sam, who was his usual affable self. But she found herself smiling at his comments having no notion as to what he was talking about. She chastised herself for moving their study date to Tuesday.

Chicken Shit.
Guilty as charged.
You're no fun when you don't put up a fight, Q.
Not in the mood today.

She felt a buzz from her phone. She ignored it for a moment, trying to see if she could at least find the thread of what topic Sam might be talking about.

"Uh, babe, you're phone is buzzing." Sam looked at her and fixed his Bieber bangs.

"Oh?"

"Yeah, I didn't think my conversation about when the next Avatar installation is coming out was that riveting to you."

"Oh, sorry. Hang on." She reached for her phone.

"It's cool I have to check with Coach Beiste about some plays. Catch you in Glee?"

"You bet." He bent to kiss her and she turned to present just her cheek. If it bothered him, he didn't make it known.

Rachel: Does this count as misbehaving?

She read the text and she tried not to smile.

Quinn: What exactly are you doing?
Rachel: Texting you while I'm having lunch with Finn.
Quinn: Yeah. No. He did it all the time with me. Hm. Wonder who he was texting…

Quinn looked across the room after she sent that. She wanted to laugh when she saw the diva's hand go to her mouth. She followed it up with her next quickly though after she'd made her point.

Quinn: ;-P Kidding you. Really. Couldn't resist. Point is, texting is not a crime…
Rachel: Phew. Okay, Fabray. Fair enough.

Quinn: So…I was thinking of checking to see if there are any good SyFy marathons over the long weekend…

Rachel: Oh?
Quinn: Yeah. If you were interested…

There was a pause, and Quinn waited, anxious. She could see Finn coming back from dumping his cafeteria tray.

Rachel:
That might be fun. I have to watch the Macy's Parade with my dads. If you're interested.
Quinn: I'd like that. But…depends on what/when with my sister. Gotta go to class.
Rachel: Me too.

As she read the last text, Quinn's stomach tightened as she looked up to see Finn bend down (way down she thought uncharitably) to kiss Rachel. She was inordinately pleased to see her only kiss him on the cheek.

#####

By the time Rachel had finished her fifth class of the day (her second with Santana…), she had an entire 'cast' of metaphorical snacks dancing in her head. Once she knew what Santana was up to it was surprisingly entertaining (given she was on the verge returning to social bottom-dwelling) to try to figure out who was what unsavory snack.

At one point or another she had metaphorically been compared to a Totino's Pizza Roll, an Altoid and a kosher Pig in the Blanket. Finn was variously a corn dog, Cheese Puffs and Slim Jims. Puck was a kosher corn dog (of course) and Bugles. She thought there was some veiled references to Artie but wasn't sure. Sam, of course, was always the Twinkie.

Eventually when Santana's running dissertation on snacks had spilled over into the hallway, Brittany complained that she was getting hungry even though she'd just eaten lunch, and could Santana please quit going on and on about snack foods that Coach Sylvester wouldn't even let them eat.

Finn had opened his emergency bag of Doritos, which made Quinn snicker. Rachel hated the smell of Doritos.

By the end of 6th period though, Quinn had had it. She'd suffered through three classes with her, and that was enough. It was almost time for glee practice and this had to stop. She cornered Santana near her locker.

"You've had your fun. And now? Time for you to back the fuck off. I haven't even had a chance to talk to Sam, and with you running your mouth..."

Santana stopped with a book in her hand and gave her an incredulous look.

"Hold up now. What? So you really are serious about that? You are really going to break up with the Twinkie?

"Yes, I'm breaking up with the Twinkie. I mean Sam, dammit. I told you, regardless of...anything else, I started out wanting this year to be about me."

Santana continued to look consternated. "Oookay. Fine. So what about your little Wavy Lay? After one night of…whatever it is you two did, is she really going to bring an end to that horror that is Frankenberry?"

"I don't know. And not the point," Quinn said with more confidence and determination than she actually felt.

"Really?" Santana drawled, changing out a book in the locker.

"Really."

Santana turned to look behind her at Brittany who was happy looking as usual. Her face softened and then she turned back, all quiet business. "Alright then Q. What exactly is the point? I mean, far as I know, you just don't roll casual like me. How are you going to feel if she keeps hangin' on to Finn?"

The was an awkwardness to the set to her friend's lips; Quinn couldn't tell if it was because she had used the word 'feel', or because she had used Finn's actual name. Probably both. Either way she knew the use of his real name meant she was serious about the question.

Santana leaned in closer for more privacy. "No lie Q." She locked eyes. "What if? Speaking from experience, I can tell you it sucks warming the bench, never knowing if you'll ever actually get in the game. For real. So. I ask you. How are you going to feel?"

How will you feel? You will feel like you want to rip his Cabbage Patch head off his wee little neck and piss down his…
Uh. Ew. Gross.
Do you deny it?
No.

Quinn tried to focus. She could see the sincerity there. She sighed. "I'll worry about that when, and if I have to. Or want to."

"Well, as long as you have a plan."

Quinn snorted. "Like yours has worked out so well. Artie is still in your happy little picture too, unless I'm mistaken…?"

Santana shoved her text book in her locker and, slammed the door shut and her back went rigid.

Quinn felt a twinge of remorse. "Sorry, low blow." She turned and leaned into the wall, letting her shoulder thump. "She'll come around. Well she will if you quit acting like you don't care about it. Really. She will, S."

Lips curled in a sour smile. "Yeah, I've been telling myself that. And yet...you are correct. Wheels is still a barnacle on the otherwise blissful Good Ship Brittana."

"Brittana? "

"I don't know. Something to do with Lord Tubbington. I didn't press." She whirled and crossed her arms across her chest. "Christ Q. We are fucking pathetic. How did WE become the resident lovelorn on the lowdown."

After a few seconds, Quinn finally remembered to have the presence of mind to at least summon a snort of derision.

"Pfft. Lovelorn? Hardly."

Santana wasn't buying yet. "Oh, pardon moi, Q. Yeah right. Whatever lets you sleep at night. I'm sure it's not like you'll tossing and turning thinking about any midnight Tater Tot snacks tonight or anything.."

"Oh shut it. And oh yeah. When the HELL have you ever seen me eat a Tater Tot for crying out loud? Seriously? Tater Tots? You are losing your skills."

"Oh you saw what I did there?" She snickered.

"Yes, you idiot. And so did Rachel. Can you just leave it alone? At least for a little while? And what was with the Artie weird Carr Water Cracker connection?

Her friend shrugged. "Not my finest work, I'll admit. So, yeah, they're boring bland crackers. And I think they're round. Like wheels...? Hey, I was working off the top of my head, gimme a break. And fine, I'll try to keep my mirth to myself. For the day anyway. I can only speak for me and Brittany, so I suggest you check yourself Q."

Quinn looked at her blankly, so Santana clarified. "Don't think I didn't see you texting Tater all day. And if I saw it, so could someone else."

Quinn rolled her eyes and shook her head. She pushed away from the wall and arched her eyebrow, speaking low. "Hey…so speak of the slow rolling devil…here he comes."

Dark eyes narrowed. She turned to see Artie and Puck materialize down the hall. Artie was enjoying his swagger, even if it was by proxy.

"Hey now. How about some sugar?" Artie proffered his cheek and Brittany smiled sweetly and bent down and kissed it. "That's what I'm talkin' about."

Santana looked like she wanted to put a fist-sized hole in Artie.

"My girl can't help herself around me, can she?" He cocked his eyebrow at his rival, feeling safe with Brittany around.

Not wanting her friend in Figgin's office for the third time this year, Quinn stepped up, bluntly. "Alright Artie, enough with the PDA. Nobody needs to see that. Ever. And B? Not cool."

Brittany looked chagrined.

Puck could see something was brewing so he tried to step in, grinning with all his boyish charm. "Ladies. So how about some sugar for Puckzilla too?"

"In your dreams Puckerman" intoned Quinn and Santana in unison. He shrugged and turned his puppy dog eyes on Brittany, who smiled and pecked him on the cheek.

Santana folded her arms and quirked her eyebrow at Artie and smirked at the discomfort she saw there. Puck was a chick magnet. And even if the guys were friends, she assumed, like herself and Quinn, there was probably some suspicion. At least on Artie's part. She did her best to poke at that weak spot in Artie whenever she could.

Quinn shot Puck a measuring glance, and gave him a slight nod of acknowledgement for running interference.

He winked at her over Brittany's head. "Okay then….at least a little love for the Puckmeister." He looked around at the still ruffled rivals. "Let's roll. We gots practice in fifteen."

Artie looked up at Puck. "I'll take it from here."

Puck lifted his hands off the handles. "Cool."

Santana stood a moment watching. Brittany gave her a questioning look, waiting for her to follow. Quinn knew it would annoy her to have to accompany the happy 'official' couple, thus becoming the proverbial third wheel.

She took pity and cleared her throat and jerked her head. "Come on San. We can catch up some more." She added loud enough for the couple to hear. "I know you were real busy Saturday night…"

Santana watched with some satisfaction as the retreating wheelchair (he didn't even wait for B, what a tool) come to an abrupt halt, then continue on. Santana half-grinned at her captain in thanks, and took the opening "Sure thing Q. Later Britts…"

Brittany turned and waved and smiled, a little sadly Santana allowed herself to think.

Puck immediately took advantage of having a Cheerio on either side of him. He put on his best cocky smile and wrapped his arms over their shoulders. "Ladies, ladies, what have you been up to this weekend?" He looked down at Santana. "I think I know what, or who, I should say…you got into. Am I right? "

Santana said nothing, but smirked slightly.

"You can neither confirm nor deny, eh? Well you all are crazy-fucked up, but I suppose it is my kinda fucked up." He gave her shoulder a squeeze before turning to Quinn.

"Now Q? My man Finn has been fretting like a damn chick since Saturday. Poor dude can't decide if he is in the dog house or not. He jawed my ear off during COD. And then some more during dinner last night. Berry this, Berry that. What happened to Berry? Berry has changed. I was like dude, what the hell? Make up your mind. One minute you think she's clingy, the next not clingy enough."

Santana craned her head around to see Quinn's reaction. All she got was a glare.

Quinn tilted her head up. "Wait, you had dinner at Hummel's?"

"Yeah, weren't you listening? Berry bailed on him, and he went all up into a funk. He probably would have invited Sam, but we figured you all were 'studying'." He waggled his eyebrows.

Quinn pinched him. "Ow, woman!"

Santana cackled, and Quinn shot her a death glare. Puck didn't want to step in whatever the two were warring over now, so he hurried on.

"So…okay, you weren't studying with Surfer Boy, got it. ANYways, I swear Finn is like a toddler when his mom is away on business trips. Without Kurt, I don't know what the hell those guys would eat. Kurt makes some good shit."

Puck kept walking and talking, getting in an occasional grope on Santana, who didn't seem to mind. "I don't know what has gotten into him. It's like if Rachel isn't acting every moment like he hung the damn moon, he doesn't know what to do. I mean, I told our boy his guns weren't big enough to carry around his big ol' head, the way he was acting." He stopped and flexed his arms. "Not like me, am I right?"

"Right, Puckerman. Not at all like you. You have a thick enough neck and big enough guns to support your huge head. There is something to be said for being appropriately proportioned. And if you mention any other proportions…"

"Fabray, you suck the fun out things sometimes, you know that?"

"But you love me." Quinn reminded him so he would keep talking.

He squeezed her shoulders in a hug and continued on.

"Right. So, I'm trying to figure out what is so different about my Berry, Berry Quite Contrary lately that has Finn's big boy panties in a twist. He was all over the place, ya'll. He said she was snippy." He tilted his head and looked at Quinn "About you. Only not like you'd think, right? She was defending you to Finn. Weird, huh?"

Santana's snicker earned her another warning glare, which Puck wisely continued to ignore. "I'm sorry Q, I'd have your back too. You know I love my Baby Momm—Ow! Ow! Sorry, Sorry! I forgot. I love you as a friend and respect you…?" When no more pinching was forthcoming, he continued "Anyhows, you know I got your back and all, but I just don't get into it with him when it comes to you. Not good for our newly revived bromance, sorry babe."

Quinn nodded and pressed her lips flat. She understood. She'd never been happy that she'd come between the two friends. Not really. It was just another casualty of her bad decision making. "So that's it? He's mad at her for that?"

"Anyway, other than him being wicked pissy when your name comes up, I've got no real idea what crawled up his ass died. Told him he was being a whiney jackass, and be nice to his girl. Maybe take her on real date. Sing her a song. She loves that sappy bullshit."

Santana looked instantly at Quinn, whose face had gone steely. She decided to repay the favor from earlier and spoke so Quinn wouldn't have to. "Oh? Furnip is planning a date?"

Quinn gave her a quizzical look, and her friend sighed and spoke slowly. "Finn, turnip. Same same." Quinn weighed it, and nodded approval. Santana continued "Anyway, tell me Furnip is going to sing today. I need a laugh."

The boy shook his head and clapped them on the back. "Sorry to ruin your fun babe. I think I managed to talk him out of it. Did you really want to hear our badly drawn boy sing a power ballad today? Told him to try taking Berry someplace besides Breadstix for once. The Wok on High Street has that tofu shit she eats."

They were almost to the music room. "And when was this date going to be?"

Puck looked at her funny. "How the hell do I know? What do you care S? I mean I thought you had your eye on somebody else's forbidden fruit now?"

"Please, never again with Blunder Boy. Trust me. I don't know...I just thought maybe those two could have a double-date or something. You know, Sam and Q here…Furnip and Tater Tot."

Quinn's eyes got wide and she gave her an incredulous and suspicious look. "Yeah, so not happening."

Puck eyed her suspiciously too. "Uh, like I said, Q here is still on Finn's shit list for some reason. Doesn't sound like a fun evening to me. Q?"

"At the moment? Not even if Hell was freezing over."

Puck nodded and removed his arms and looked at one and then the other before raising his hands. "Okay. What? What? I'm missing something here aren't I?"

Santana smiled her deadly too sweet smile. "Oh, Puckerman, Trust me, you wouldn't understand. This little drama is.. how shall I say…?"

"S…" Quinn warned her with a clenched jaw. "I am talking me wearing cleats next Cheerio practice. Think about it."

Santana took a moment to think about that. Puck wisely just put his hands in his pockets and waited for the showdown to end.

Santana chose her words carefully. "Let's just say it is a girl thing Puckerman. Yeah. JUST between girls."

Quinn ground her teeth. She raised her fingers and made a measure. "This close Lopez. Just. This. Close." Then she pivoted and left.

Santana giggled and called after her. "What Fabray? Am I wrong? Oh, there's Sam. Ask him if he wants to double-date."

Puck just stood there. "Uh, are you going to explain that?"

Santana waved her hands dismissively at the perplexed boy. Now that the opportunity to needle Quinn just a little bit was gone, she was over it. She had no intentions of messing with Quinn at any higher level than she was now. Sure, they could sabotage each other occasionally. Okay, more than occasionally, but not about something like this.

"Don't worry your pretty little head well-supported head Puck. I'm just yanking her chain. Keep this to yourself."

"Oookay. What to myself?"

"Good answer."

A/N: Once again, really sorry for the long break. I had to get all my little ducks in a row to have time to write, and then I had to (attempt) to get all my little plot ducks in a row... :) Thanks for hanging in or checking it out if you're new! On a happy note. Man U thrashed by Man City today. This makes me happy. Liverpool are doing...better. But they shoulda won yesterday. Oh well. And a shout out to all you reviewers who keep reviewing. Thank you SO for taking the time :)

Wikipedia: Quinns Rocks is an outer coastal suburb of Perth, Western Australia, located 38 kilometres north of Perth's central business district.

Wikipedia: ME is a hip hop duet composed of Continental T and E-leven.