Finn looks at the two most recent texts on his phone.

Rachel: Please listen to my message and call me back. My dads are at a holiday party tonight, I just want to talk.

Puck: dude just scored a bottle of jack. meet you at the park by my house?

It takes him all of three seconds to choose which person to text back.

Hold onto my hands, I feel I'm sinking, sinking without you.

And to my mind, everything's stinking, stinking without you.

And in the night, I could be helpless,

I could be lonely, sleeping without you.

And in the day, everything's complex,

There's nothing simple, when I'm not around you.

But I'll miss you when you're gone, that is what I do.

The accented wails of The Cranberries' lead singer wash over Rachel as she lies on her bed and soaks in her own self-pity, hitting the back of her head against her pillow.

No response from Finn. She didn't really expect one. So here she is. Alone. Forever alone.

And then the tears start falling.

"Flipping heck!" she shouts into her empty bedroom, her voice cracking, "What is wrong with me? He's just a boy!"

She rolls over on her side, and her gaze falls on the picture frame on her bedside table. The photo is of her and Finn, at the County Fair during summer. She's holding the giant Eeyore he won for her at the hoops booth. He'd remembered how she'd told him that Eeyore had always been her favorite character from the Winnie the Pooh series, because she related to his misunderstood loneliness, and his inability to connect with his peers.

"But he's not just a boy," she weeps, taking the picture frame in her hands and letting droplets of tears fall onto the glass, "He's the boy."

I'm working on erasing you

just don't have the proper tools

I get hammered, forget that you exist

there's no way I'm forgetting this

The Berry's flickering porch light seems to reflect his mood. He doesn't know what the hell he's doing here. He's been standing out in the freezing cold for ten fucking minutes, debating whether or not to knock. He's wasted as hell, and he just drove drunk (even though Rachel's neighborhood is just a few blocks from Puck's, he'd still thought with a perverse pleasure how it'd serve her right if he crashed into a tree or something on her account).

While they'd been downing shots of whiskey at the park, Puck had asked him why he wasn't mad at him, but was still refusing to talk to Rachel. He'd told Puck he wasn't in love with him. Puck then told him that Rachel would have never gone through with it, that she'd never love anyone as much as she loved him. Then he'd punched Puck in the face, because God only knows how much the bastard deserved it, and drove to Rachel's.

After cursing at himself for being such a wimp, he knocks sharply on the door. He waits, and waits, and waits. Just as he's about to turn around and get the fuck home, the door opens.

Rachel's hair is all piled on top of her head, and she isn't wearing any make-up. He's seen her with no make-up on before, but this is different. Her eyes are bloodshot, her lips are chapped, and she looks really pale. She's drowning in that giant Eeyore night-shirt she's had since she was 11. He hates that he remembers that. He hates that he knows the significance behind it. He hates that there's a giant stuffed Eeyore sitting in the armchair up in her room. He hates that he won it for her. He hates that she's looking up at him with her big sad eyes, that are just like Eeyore's.

Don't feel sorry for her, he tells himself you've been crying too, and this is all her fault.

"You really suck? You know that?" he tells her angrily, "You really really suck."

Rachel's eyes bulge. He came. Even if only to say hurtful things to her. He's turning around to leave now, but she grabs him by the wrist.

"I can smell the alcohol on your breath, you shouldn't drive drunk," she says softly, "Come inside, I'll make you some pasta or something to soak it up."

He rips his wrist out of her delicate grip.

"Don't think I can't see what you're trying to do," he tells her harshly, "A way to a man's heart is through his stomach only if you haven't cheated on him first."

"Stop being so egotistical Finn," she tells him sternly, standing her ground, " I only offered to make you food because I don't want you to be foolish and hurt yourself by getting into a car accident."

"That's rich, coming from you. You've already hurt me enough, a car crash couldn't do much worse," he replies bitterly.

"Fine," she says shortly, "I don't want you hurting some other innocent then."

That makes him stop and think.

"Whatever," he replies, stomping into her house like a petulant 3 year old boy.

"You know what the worst part is?" he says suddenly, in between bites of the fucking heavenly fettucine alfredo she's made him (damn her multi-talents).

Rachel looks up at him from her seat on top of the kitchen counter. She's been sipping hot chocolate, hugging her knees to her body. And they haven't said a word to each other since he walked in twenty minutes ago.

"You were such a fucking prude with me," he says angrily, the alcohol swimming through his veins and making his tongue loose, "And I honestly didn't mind 'cuz, I thought you were worth the wait. But I was always thinking in the back of my head, 'maybe she doesn't love me as much as I love her' because all I ever wanted was to be as close to you as possible, and you didn't seem to want that at all. And then I found out you were willing to give it up in a second for Puck just for the sake of revenge? There's something wrong with that. I don't think you love me as much as you say you do."

Rachel blinks in shock. Is he serious? She doesn't know how to reply.

If only he knew. How every time he leans in for a kiss, her stomach erupts in butterflies. Or how every time he rests his hand on her knee, a buzzing heat settles in between her thighs. Or how a flash of his crooked smile can make her feel faint. He doesn't even need to touch her to turn her on, and that scared the living daylights out of her.

She'd been terrified of letting things get farther, because the effect he had on her was so strong that she lost all of her self-possession.

And she's so inexperienced.

She'd come so close to going all the way with him. She'd wanted to so unbelievably badly. But what if she messed up? Did something wrong? Made a weird unappealing noise? Or worse, what if she was bad? Sometimes she'd stay up all night fretting about disappointing him in bed, and him breaking up with her as a result. It was safer to wait, she'd told herself.

And that's why she'd always stop them right before that point where she knew she wouldn't be able to stop.

She hates losing control, and that's what he does to her, makes her loses herself into him.

She crosses her arms defensively, not wanting to appear too vulnerable.

"How was I supposed to know that you wouldn't just drop me once we did it?" she asks defensively, "After all, that's what you did with Santana…"

He gives her that look, from across the kitchen, and fettucine noodles hang forgotten on his for. It's that same look he gave her in the hallway after her confession, anguish evident in every crease of his forehead.

"You were never Santana," he tells her, "I loved you."

She lets out a groan of frustration and sets her mug of hot chocolate on the counter, and jumps off. Walking towards the island where he's eating, she crosses her arms and looks at him stoutly.

"What do I have to say to get through to you that what happened with Puck didn't mean anything! It meant less than nothing!"

"Then why the hell did you do it?" he returns.

"Don't you get it?" she shrieks, "I did it because I love you too much. So much that it magnifies my insanity. I've never cared about anyone, or anything so much in my life! And when I thought… when I thought I was losing you I," she takes a gasp of air, trying to hold back the tears, "I was so furious I lost sight of everything else. The whole Quinn thing didn't even occur to me, honest, Puck was just being so nice to me and I just wanted to hurt you as much as you'd hurt me. And you're right, it was mean of me, because I'm selfish and like usual I was only thinking of myself, thinking of how betrayed I felt. And I thought maybe I could make myself feel better if I did something to cancel out what you did with Santana."

She takes a deep breath, surprised that she just put so much of herself out there.

"Well congratulations, your love tore us apart."

She takes a sharp intake of breath. How can he be so unfeeling? He's just sitting there, hearing what she says but not listening!

"But you're not being fair!" she says, thoroughly aggravated "You know what the inciting incident for my rendez vous with Puck was? I saw you checking out Santana in the hallway and-"

"What are you talking about?" Finn asks, the anger in his face getting replaced with confusion, "I never check Santana out."

"Don't deny it Finn, I know you think she's prettier than me-"

"Rachel stop making all these stupid accusations!" He pushes the stool out from underneath him to stand up, "If Miss Pillsbury had let me answer that question I would have told you that yeah I think Santana's hot but I think you're beautiful. And beautiful is like, a thousand times better than hot. And if you're talking about the other day when Santana mouthed something weird to me in the hall, I was just smirking cuz she reminded me of a gaping fish. I was laughing at her, because obviously I was still mad at her for spilling the beans about the whole motel room thing last year. I mean, how could you think I found her even remotely attractive when she was so mean to both you and me? She's so ugly on the inside that she's almost ugly on the outside too now. But you know what? I don't even know why I'm explaining myself to you, you don't deserve it!"

He pushes the plate of unfinished pasta away and walks out the door. He doesn't care if he dies from driving drunk and he doesn't care if he takes anyone with him. He just has to get out of here.

A/N:

Hell yeah I just created an incredibly contrived explanation for Finn's 'checking out' of Santana (if you re-watch the scene though, the 'look' really can be taken as a mocking smirk). Because MY Finn would never. And in all reality, the writers obviously just wrote that in to give Rachel some sort of justification for hooking up with Puck, but it ended up just being not credible for Finn's character.