Author's Notes: Written for this prompt on the glee_angst_meme: "The reason Rachel was so furious about Santana and Finn?
Santana never says no, and she really doesn't like it when others say no. Rachel found that out the hard way when Santana didn't listen."
The Right to Remain Silent
"Your boyfriend and I totally did it last year."
And with that sentence, her whole world comes crashing down.
Mr. Schue tries to get the club's attention back – for the first time in her life, Rachel doesn't care about a competition; she wouldn't care at this moment if the venue was hit by nuclear warheads (which would likely lead to nuclear fallout that would kill them all, but still not force her to pay attention). Finn won't look her in the eye. Santana just looks smug.
She wants to believe it's not true. She has to believe it's not true. Finn isn't the kind of boy to fall under Santana's spell; be led astray by perky breasts and a cheerleading uniform. He's not. He wouldn't... fuck Santana just for being Santana (isn't that the reason everyone fucks Santana?). He's better than that.
But he looks so damn ashamed and Santana looks so damn confident that she has to believe. Oh god. This can't be happening to her. It just can't be.
Somewhere deep down, she knows she can't blame Finn as much as she does right now. Yes, he was wrong to lie, but they weren't together and she couldn't control his sex life then. And she's hardly the kind to think if you give yourself away to someone you're not serious about, it means you are defiled forever and you can never be loved or wedded.
But that's not what it's about. She wants to be sick when she thinks about it, but... Finn doesn't know what she knows.
He didn't betray her. It wouldn't be a betrayal unless he knew what she did, which he didn't.
But she kind of can't help but hate him for betraying her anyway.
Santana found her in the choir room, looking through a few spare sets of sheet music that Mr. Schue said were falling apart, and could afford to be donated to whoever wanted them. They kind of were disintegrating, but she was sure she could salvage the music.
"Berry," said the crisp, sharp voice, startling Rachel. "I find you hanging out here and not like, with friends. What a surprise."
The insult was so basic Rachel didn't even bother to flinch anymore. She did, however, look up and cautiously eye the door. The hallways were empty around them. There was no-one in the room with them. She was well and truly alone with Santana Lopez, and from past experience she could say that nearly always led to bad things – ruined clothes and abusive, venomous diatribes that could reduce her to tears no matter how hard she told herself she was better than that.
Relax, she told herself. We're in Glee together now. What would be the point of Santana being cruel to you now? She's probably attempting to mend things a little – as much as she can anyway; she is still Santana.
"Hello," she eventually said, calmly and coolly. She was not going to show panic just because Santana got her alone in a room. "What are you doing here? Excuse me if I sound rude, but, well, we don't exactly talk much. Except for when you're highlighting each individual way in which I am an affront to the population of this school, of course."
Santana shrugged a little. "Yeah, well, sorry about that shit or whatever," she said. "Anyway, since Q got me stuck in this club, might as well try and talk to people here. Even if you are a loser."
Okay, the second attack frustrated Rachel. "You know, if you're attempting to mend fences it would probably be a good idea to stop insulting me."
Santana looked taken aback. "Uh, this is what I'm like with everyone, Berry. It's as nice as I get. Just be grateful I'm not isolating the greatest weaknesses in your self-esteem and ruthlessly exploiting them to tear you apart... anymore. And – 'mend fences'? Is that even a thing people say?"
Rachel sighed and turned back to the sheet music. "Nevermind," she said. "And I'm fairly sure it is. Nonetheless – what do you want, Santana?"
Santana raised her hands in 'surrender' pose. "Okay, I just told you that. Thought we could talk. Girl to girl. Choir dork to choir dork."
"Forgive me for being a little hesitant to trust you, especially given our history and how you seem physically incapable of not reminding me of your disrespect for me once every thirty seconds." Rachel said, working herself into a righteous snit. Then she sighed. "But fine. How are you, Santana?"
"Great," said the girl. "I mean, since Q got kicked off the Cheerios I'm head cheerleader right now, which is an upgrade, so I'm pretty goddamn good things to all men or whatever right now."
Rachel was a little taken aback. "Well. Good for you," she said stiltedly. "I mean, to me it seems a little cruel to take such delight in usurping a position from your close personal friend, who only lost it as part of her much greater struggle which probably has her needing all the support possible right now, but..."
Santana snorted. "Oh please, she knows the score. This thing is totally super awesome for my rep; she gets that I'm happy about it. Seriously, as long as we don't plot to force each other out of the position, it's cool."
"I see," said Rachel. "It still seems callous to me, but I guess I just lack the understanding of the social structure of the upper level cliques at this school."
"You are kind of socially retarded." Rachel didn't even bother to address the insult at this time – she really just wanted to get out of there, but just storming out would be rude and she was kind of scared of aggravating Santana. The girl had spent over a year psychologically torturing her, after all. "Still, I can do with it. This club has sent me down a bit. Especially when people realize a girl like you is getting her mack on with my man."
Rachel just about froze. Oh god. Was Santana here because she was jealous? Santana's usual cruelty was bad enough, but the idea of having the girl jealous of her was just a little bit terrifying.
Nonetheless, she pushed through any fear. "Santana," she said. "You and Puck haven't dated in months – you dumped him, if I recall. You really have no right to become possessive. He and I have parted ways in any case, so you have no need to become possessive either."
Santana looked disbelieving. "Okay, I wasn't like, mad at you for getting him. Like he wouldn't have still fucked me no matter what you did."
Rachel frowned. "Actually, he was surprisingly gentle and chivalrous while we were dating."
Santana snorted. "God, what are you, twelve? Puck does that to all the girls who hold out. He nails them and then – boom, out like a flash."
"That doesn't even make sense," Rachel snapped. "That whole 'not jealous' thing? You're not showing it so well."
Santana rolled her eyes. "Whatever," she said. "I'm just giving it to you straight. Fuck, how naive are you?"
"Okay, I don't need this. You're not talking to me, you're flagrantly insulting me, and I don't want to here it."
Santana raised an eyebrow, and rather obviously stepped in front of the door. "So you really went all the way, huh?"
Rachel was very glad she wasn't drinking anything at that moment. "What?"
Santana shrugged. "You didn't seem like the kind of put out quick, but hey – loser, low self-esteem, I get it. Can hardly blame you. What happen, Berry? You not good enough so he dumped you, and now you're all moody? He is kind of a jackass like that."
"I am not moody about what happened with Puck," Rachel said, trying to step past the other girl.
"So you did fuck him," Santana declared with a victorious smirk.
"No!" Rachel cried. "And even if I did, it wouldn't be any of your business."
"So he dumped you 'cause you wouldn't put out," Santana concluded. "Man, why do none of the girls around here ever learn their lessons?"
"That is the most sickening anti-feminist thought I have ever heard, and I am not sticking around for this." Rachel tried to step past her again, but this time Santana shoved her back roughly and she collided with the piano, creating a cacophony of discordant notes. Ow. When Santana walked towards her, she looked... predatory.
"Jesus, Berry. Loosen up. I wanted to talk to you – don't you wanna bitch to your girlfriends about how bad that guy treated you; have them go all righteous retribution on his ass? 'Cause, y'know, I refuse to put out and that boy's my bitch."
Rachel barely even heard what Santana said; she was staring at the door over the girl's shoulder. "Let me go, Santana." A sickening ball of fear was starting to coil in her stomach.
"Yeah whatever," said Santana, striding forward and pinning her against the piano, one arm on either side. Despite herself, Rachel whimpered, thinking of years of psychological cruelty and harassment; the firm muscles years of cheerleading practice would build up, easily allowing things to turn physical. Oh god, the door was wide open – even if she couldn't get away, couldn't someone please come in? She didn't feel safe anymore. She felt humiliated.
"So how far you'd get with him anyway?" Santana asked casually, like that was even vaguely appropriate. "Way I see it, you either held out entirely, or you took it as far as you possibly could as quick as you possibly could. I'm not really sure."
"We're not having this conversation," Rachel said, struggling to break past Santana's grip again. It didn't work; she was blocked by the other girl's strong arm muscles. Oh god.
"So however far you went with him, you're ashamed of it. Huh," Santana said. "You know, I always find it really depressing when people act like chicks have no right to have sex drives. Thought you'd be better than that, Berry."
"I have a sex drive," Rachel said snootily. "And I am perfectly aware I have a right to have one. I just don't want to talk about my sex life with you. Now let me out of this room."
"How am I keeping you here?" Santana asked.
"Um, you're pinning me against the piano and pushing back any attempt I make to escape?" Rachel pointed out, but Santana just rolled her eyes and ignored the statement.
"So we're talking... second? Third? Can't imagine Puck agreeing to it anyway if there wasn't much touching."
Rachel turned bright red. "We didn't get past first, if you must know," she blurted out before she could think too much about whether it was a good idea to give in. "There. Does that satisfy your curiosity? Can I leave now?"
Santana looked confused. "Why?"
"Why wouldn't you let him past first?" she asked. "I mean, if you've got this whole feminist right to want sex thing working for you like you say, why would you turn down the idea? Think what you will of him as a person, but there's no denying – that boy is a fox."
Rachel blushed. "I wasn't ready," she explained. "Besides, my relationship with Noah wasn't particularly genuine. It wouldn't be right for me to..."
"So freaking what?" Santana asked. "If I only hooked up with guys who I had some kind of serious commitment to, I'd never get laid. Seriously. Or is 'not genuine' just some fancy way of saying he wasn't your type?"
"I am not having this conversation!" Rachel shrieked, hands flailing in the air. Why on Earth would Santana do this? To humiliate and hurt her, sure, but there didn't seem to be much point if there was no-one around to share Santana's malevolent glee – no pun intended – at torturing Rachel Berry.
Santana pushed her back with a firm hand on the chest, making the piano sound again. Rachel gasped a little. "Yeah, we are. Come on. Open up. That's what girlfriends do, y'know?"
"We are not 'girlfriends'. We're not even regular friends, and you cannot force me into this situation."
"Oh god, shut up. Seriously. Sometimes I forget why we all hated you anyway, and you are so reminding me," says Santana. "But still, might as well not give up hope. So if he ain't your type, who is? What guy fuels that little brain of yours, gets you hot?"
Rachel blushed further, and squirmed uncomfortably on the spot. Santana had no right to grill her about such matters, and she really just needed to get out of here. "Santana, leave me alone," she pleaded weakly.
Santana smirked at her. "Always thought I saw you had your eyes on Quinn's guy," she said. "Well, he is tall – you know what they say about tall guys, right? That a thing for you?"
"Santana, leave me alone. You're making me uncomfortable."
"God, you freaking prude, I'm not going to judge you or whatever," Santana said. "So open up. What's your dirtiest fantasy? About who?"
"You wanna suck Hudson's cock?" Santana asked, and Rachel gasped at the audacity of it. "I mean, didn't you say you didn't have a gag reflex? That's gotta get you thinking all sorts of dirty things."
"Santana, I am not talking about this! How do you even know about my lack of a gag reflex anyway?" Rachel shrieked, more than a little hysterical. Okay, yes she had some sexual fantasies involving Finn Hudson in the past – what of it? She liked him, and she was fifteen, it happened. That did not mean anyone and everyone had the right to just come out of nowhere and grill her for detail, and trap her there until she'd give it. It was wrong.
If only she could have convinced Santana of this.
"You mentioned it," the girl said, leaning in further. She cocked her head to the side, getting a curious look on her face. "Fuck. When you said he wasn't your type... you meant it, huh?"
Rachel blinked at her. "What to you mean?"
Santana rolled her eyes, but raised her hand as if to show Rachel something. She lay her hand across the flat of Rachel's stomach surprisingly gently, and Rachel's eyes went wide. Oh god, she thought.
"That it, Berry?" Santana asked, in hushed tones. "That why you can't tell me any of your dirty thoughts? You just a big ol' dyke; is that it?"
It snapped Rachel out of shock. "No! Don't touch me!" she yelled, slapping Santana's hand away. Santana gave her a disbelieving look, before shoving her hard until she was entirely lying on the piano, back bent awkwardly.
"Jesus. Chill. I am offering myself up here; you think you can do better?" Santana absolutely shamelessly reached forward and groped one of Rachel's breasts; Rachel gasped in shock and sickness.
"No," she said. "Santana, I don't want–"
"Relax, I won't kiss and tell," Santana said. "And trust me, good girls like you – always want to see why guys like pussy anyway. I mean, c'mon, you have two gay dads, how can you not get curious about the homo?"
Rachel's fury took over when Santana tried to draw some connection between this and her dads – and homosexuality in general; it didn't matter what genitalia was involved, she was saying no. She spat at Santana. "Leave my dads out of this. And no. I am quite comfortable in my heterosexual identity, so don't act like you're doing me some great favor–"
"Oh god, shut up. Seriously." Santana shoved her again roughly, hands tugging at Rachel's short skirt. A long, fake, plastic nail caught in the fabric. "And yeah, I don't buy it. You have no idea how many 'straight' girls wind up begging for it; I'm kinda jaded. So just sit back, and relax."
"No," Rachel insisted, squirming away but trapped by Santana's arms either side of her. "Even if I was – this isn't even vaguely–"
"Christ, Berry. Do I need to gag you? 'Though I'm thinking 'bout telling Hummel just how freaked out you are by the great big lesbo sex, because he kind of hates you anyway and I'm sure he'd love an excuse to think you're a homophobic bitch too."
Rachel glared as best she could while panicking. "Are you trying to emotionally blackmail me into letting you... that is not what homophobia is, now let me go!"
"No." Oh god, she had a hand up Rachel's skirt now, grabbing at her thighs. Rachel kicked against her as best she could, but Santana was strong and barely winced. "Freaking hell, just chill already. I mean, I know some like it rough, but seriously?"
"Santana, stop." How could Santana seriously not understand that Rachel didn't want to do this? "I'll scream."
It didn't have the intended effect. Santana smirked down at her, looking victorious. "That's your whole deal? Don't worry. You're hardly the first screamer I've had; I'm good with that."
"Santana, that's not what I..." Rachel trailed off as Santana leaned down and started kissing her neck, roughly nipping with her teeth. Despite herself, she whimpered in fear. No. She refused to be victimized.
She took a deep breath.
"Fuck!" Santana quickly covered her mouth with a hand, despite Rachel turning her head to the side, and when that failed, trying to push Santana's hand away with her tongue (gross, but usually effective. Not this time). "Do you want to get me expelled?" asked the other girl, glaring at her. Rachel barely controlled the urge to laugh hysterically at Santana worrying about expulsion. "Just, shush up, Berry. You'll like it, I promise."
"No," she repeated. No matter what Santana did to her, Rachel couldn't stop struggling. She would not give in. She was stronger than that.
"Yeah sure." Santana pulled her hand away, and Rachel didn't get the chance to take advantage and scream for help again before Santana silenced her another way – her mouth. Santana was trying to kiss her, thick tongue shoved in her mouth no matter how Rachel tried to force her out.
Oh god, Santana's hand was at the front of her underwear now, trying to rub and push through the cotton. Rachel held her pelvis back as much as possible. No. Rachel fought the urge to sob, and rather failed – and why shouldn't she sob? She was scared and hurting, because she didn't want to do this and no-one seemed to care that much. She had always thought Santana Lopez an awful person, but this wasn't a slushie to the face, or a brutal rumor, or one of those comments on her MySpace that used to leave her sobbing into her pillow at night. Couldn't Santana see what she was doing?
The mouth left hers again, and Rachel considered that a small mercy even as she tried to avoid contact. The hand up her skirt pressed harder, but Rachel barely felt sensation, due to both fear and desperately trying not to. Rachel noticed one of Santana's arms planted over her on the piano, open and vulnerable. She wasn't sure it would work, but she saw a chance.
She leaned to the side, and bit, hard.
"Fuck!" Santana screeched as Rachel's teeth dug in, flailing and trying to shake her off. Rachel kept them in, taking advantage of the distraction to stand up, for god's sakes, letting go when she was back on her feet and shoving Santana away.
"Stay away from me!" Rachel leaped to the door, wiping away hints of tears. Santana clutched at the bitemark on her arm, hissing in pain. Rachel knew not to wait around, to just run, but she found herself frozen.
"You crazy bitch," said Santana. "You know, I was trying to help; thought if I got you off you might loosen up a bit, but whatever. If you're going to play hard to get and be a psycho, whatever."
Santana strutted forward, heading out the door. Rachel cringed as the girl got in her personal space; please don't touch me again...
"By the way," Santana said, giving Rachel an appraising look, "Your bra's too small. I could feel where it was all... displaced."
She stormed out, and Rachel let out a shuddering breath. It was meant to help, she couldn't help but think. She shook her head. She wouldn't panic. She wouldn't weep and moan and go shouting her story to the world; that would only satisfy Santana, to see her like that, and she doubted she'd be take seriously.
So she didn't. She pulled her skirt down, smoothed her hair properly, collected her things and went to class.
Rachel's not stupid. She knows perfectly well what happened was sexual assault. She's just... not sure Santana knows that.
It sounds insane, but... Santana was so self-righteous about what she was doing, and that Rachel was being irrational. Rachel can't help but think that came from somewhere. Santana says she never says no. The culture of the Cheerios and otherwise popular students has always seemed terrifying and insane to Rachel; she could see Santana being so conditioned to accept and initiate sex she thought it was applicable everywhere, and didn't understand what no truly meant.
Rachel thinks one way or another, the intent was still to hurt and humiliate her – most likely, Santana wanted to seduce her then publicly out her to the vicious homophobic masses that are awfully less accepting when you're not wearing a cheerleading uniform. But she doesn't think Santana saw the difference between bullying on her previous scale, and what she was doing then – could Santana understand that when she said no, she meant no?
(Letting Santana off the hook because of those factors goes against all she believes in – that is always the perpetrator's responsibility and such. But she needs to treat it like just another horrible thing a horrible girl did to her; not what it was. She's not strong enough to cope with the emotions of that fact, even if she can accept the knowledge.)
On some level, she knows it's unfair to associate Finn with any of this. He doesn't know anything. But that's sort of not the point.
He was meant to be her knight in shining armor. A complete separate entity from the world around them, that made her life hell for so long; that pushed Santana to such an action. Their love for one another was innocent and romantic; something being corrupted by a hierarchy would ruin for you.
She forgot who Finn Hudson was. As much as she loves him, he was the boy who threw eggs at her before they ever met; who let Kurt be thrown in dumpsters; who stood by Quinn Fabray's side as Rachel was told so many times why she did not deserve to walk these halls. He's still a part of that world.
He bought into it when he fucked Santana. After all, sex is Santana's purpose in that world – never say no? And that pushed Santana to her actions, which would not believe Rachel would say no. Ergo, Finn pushed Santana to her actions. And she can't accept that; she just can't.
That's completely insane and she knows it. It's not Finn's fault; from everything she's heard, their encounter happened after the... the assault. But that nauseous feeling in her stomach is rather barring her from accepting it.
She watches as Santana smirks at Finn in the hallway, obviously laying her trap. She doesn't feel guilty, does she? Finn, for his part, does not look repelled. He is going back into the lion's den, or something like that, she can't make metaphors when she's hurting this much.
Someone approaches. There's a hand on her arm. "Are you okay?"
Puck. He's talking, saying he has to be nice to Jews now, and she can't help but think... he's a part of that world to. After all, who did Santana base her questions off? Puck created the culture.
But he didn't hurt her.
He asks her to walk with him, and she accepts. God, she forgot how amazing his arms were.
Santana asked her if she went all the way with Puck, and she wonders what would have happened if she'd said yes... if it had been true. If he'd had flagrant sexuality to throw around, denying any claim the girl had to 'good intentions'.
Maybe she could still have that. Maybe it would be easier, to deal with what that world did to her if she was a part of it.
(She blames the world, not one girl, because it doesn't matter if she wants to kill the world – it would never happen. Not so with Santana.)