a/n: I made a timeline for events in Grilled Cheesus in order to write this, and the missing scenes as well as the internal monologues I included are somewhat influenced by how I decided events must have happened, so I just wanted to mention this to you. Others might disagree, but after rewatching Grilled Cheesus, this order of events makes the most sense to me. I know it might seem unrealistic that Burt is out of commission for an entire week, but judging by outfits and the timing of football games and church, etc., this just works out best as far as I can tell. Okay. Carry on.


:: 2.03 - Grilled Cheesus ::

i.

He hates Monday mornings. A lot. But when his alarm goes off and he wakes up with a groan only to remember that completely and totally awesome win the Friday night before, he grins up at the ceiling. School is gonna be so good today — wins like that don't happen much at McKinley, and all the football players are gonna get praise heaped on them. He might not be the quarterback anymore, but he's still on the team, and he still helped make that win happen.

Thank you, Grilled Cheesus.

He pushes his sheets back and makes a beeline for the bathroom. He has twenty minutes to shower, get dressed, and eat breakfast before he has to leave to pick up Rachel for school. But he can't really focus on anything.

What should he ask for now?

He thinks immediately of at least, like, thirty things that would make totally great wishes — or prayers, or whatever. But what if he doesn't get an unlimited number of wishes? He has to pick really carefully, 'cause he can't waste something like this. So what does he want most . . . ?

He can't decide. He even thinks about it so much he bangs into the side of the bathroom door. (It hurts like a motherfucker, for the record.)

Rachel sends a text just as Finn pulls on his polo. This is your wake up text! Please wear that blue long-sleeved shirt I like so much. It'll go very well with my outfit. I'll see you soon!

He grins. She doesn't realise that he actually got up when his alarm went off today. Of course, he's not gonna tell her about Grilled Cheesus, 'cause she'll totally think it's crazy. But he is gonna pay tribute to the big guy. He's gotta — he promised Cheesus he would, and if he expects to have any more of his prayers answered, he better stick to his promises and stuff.

He yanks off his polo and starts to rifle through his clothing for his blue shirt. He finds it sorta near the closet. It smells okay. He can wear it.

He thinks about a good song to suggest. Tears in Heaven is about Eric Clapton's son, not really about Jesus, so that wouldn't much work, but there's gotta be something that'll totally do JC justice.

His grabs toast from his mom, kisses her cheek, and then heads out to his truck. He flips through the stations on the radio in hopes that something really good and inspiring will come on. Heck, maybe Jesus will help him out and make the radio play the song that he wants Finn to sing in Glee.

By the time Finn pulls into Rachel's driveway, though, he still doesn't have any good ideas.

Whatever. He can still pay JC a tribute. He'll get all of Glee behind it. He's pretty sure Quinn'll be all over the plan. And Rachel's religious, too, but not in a crazy way like Quinn. And, yeah, okay, Jesus isn't really Rachel's main man and stuff, 'cause she's a Jew and she loves, like, Moses or somebody, but she probably won't mind.

He doesn't even have to climb out of the truck before she bounds out of her house, pulling her backpack behind her and beaming at him. "You're right on time!" she exclaims as she climbs up into the truck and leans over to kiss his cheek.

"Yeah," he says, smiling as he backs the truck up.

"How was your weekend?" she asks.

"Pretty good," he says, nodding. "How was yours?"

"Amazing!" She can't seem to talk fast enough, then, as she describes her Sunday spent in Columbus with her dads, and the production of Wicked they went to see. He smiles and nods and tries to listen. "I can't wait until the day I can astound audiences with my performance as Elphaba," she says, a wistful sigh in her voice.

He wonders randomly if maybe he should wish that Rachel becomes really famous like she wants, and that she ends up in Wicked and Funny Girl and Evita and all those other musicals she really wants to be in. Can he wish for stuff that won't come true for a few more years? Or pray, or whatever? But he doesn't need to wish for that, does he? Because Rachel will be famous, so he shouldn't waste a wish on that.

Because he probably only gets three wishes, right? Like a genie? That makes sense.

Rachel leans forward to change the radio station, and she asks him to tell her about his Sunday. He starts to answer, but when she leans forward like that he gets this awesome view of her cleavage, and he gets really distracted. And then he realises his eyes should be on the road, and he tries to focus on driving. "It was good," he finally says. "Sunday was good."

"What did you do?"

"I don't know. Played video games and stuff." He shrugs. He glances at her again, and at her cleavage, and then he looks quickly back at the road before she can catch him. "I like your dress," he says, because he does, and she looks pretty, and she should know.

"Thank you!" He can nearly hear her smile, even as she goes on happily. "Oh! Did I tell you about dinner? Daddy went to college with this wonderful woman who owns a restaurant right down the street from the theatre, so we went to dinner there, of course, and. . . ." She goes on and on, and at one point she tries to impersonate the waiter at the restaurant, and she sounds completely hilarious.

They finally pull into the school parking lot, and she takes his hand as they head in. He nods at a couple of his teammates, and he starts to grin as more and more people hail him and clap him on the back and tell him he did awesome at the game on Friday. This is totally cool.

"You're a star," Rachel tells him. "You're the star." She smiles.

He glances down at her, and a little of his high fades. "I'm not the quarterback," he says. And the real star is the quarterback. Everybody knows that. He tries not to let his disappointment show.

"You should be," she replies, "and soon enough Couch Bieste will recognise your talent." She pauses, smiling softly. "You know I'm still proud of you either way."

She always knows what to say to make him feel better. He glances down at her again, and he can't help that his gaze falls from her face to her cleavage once more. That really is an awesome dress.

And, see, there are lots of things that suck about being really tall and clumsy and stuff, especially when your girlfriend is tiny and you basically have to pick her up to make-out with her. But there are good things, too, like how if he walks with her and he looks down at her, he almost always has this really good shot of her cleavage. He isn't a pervert or anything, though.

She's his girlfriend — he's totally allowed to look. It's pretty much his job.

Rachel doesn't have much when it comes to boobs, but that's okay, 'cause he's always been a butt guy, honestly, and Rachel has an awesome butt — pretty much the best one in the school. He still likes boobs, though, and he likes to look at hers, and he really wishes she would let him touch them.

They reach her locker. She tilts her face up for a kiss, and then she tells him she'll see him at lunch, and he smiles at her and starts towards his own locker. He bumps fists with a linebacker on the team, and then he glances back at Rachel, checking her hair in her locker mirror.

He thinks of Grilled Cheesus, and what he wants for his next wish.

ii.

How? When? Why?

She doesn't understand. Finn has never been religious before. He seems to prefer to worship food, or football, or music. And she understands that. But this? Really? Where has this random love for Jesus come from? Where? And why? Does Finn even know anything about Jesus?

And he doesn't seem to find his newfound love of Jesus in any way strange.

How can he not understand that this revelation shocks her? What about their future together? What about their children? She knows that many families manage fine with parents of two different religions, but doesn't that often leave the children torn in an abyss, unsure of which religion is truly theirs? Does Finn want their children to be lost in an abyss?

She glances over at Finn, tapping his thumb against the wheel to the beat of the stupid pop song that plays softly over the radio. He has his eyes on the road, because he really is such a focused driver, and she likes that.

But isn't he even a little worried about their children? She looks down at her lap and forces herself to stay clam. She's probably simply overreacting.

But — dear God, this is about Quinn, isn't it?

Quinn came onto him, and he turned her down, but she put the idea in his head. And now his blonde ex-girlfriend has inspired him to find Jesus, and he wants to marry her and have perfect blonde children who love Jesus. Rachel definitely saw the look that passed between Finn and Quinn when Finn said that he knew others loved Jesus, too.

"Are you okay, baby?" Finn asks.

Started, she only stares him.

"You seem really quiet and stuff," he says. "Did somebody say something or . . . or something?" His frown deepens. "Nobody slushied you, right?"

"No, no, I would have told you," she assures. "But I. . . ."

His eyes dart to her for a second and then refocus on the road. "But?" he encourages.

She doesn't know how to put her thoughts into words. Well, she does, but what if he admits that he does love Quinn? No. No. She shouldn't worry about this. But where has his new love of Jesus Christ come from? And what if he really feels sincerely that Jesus is his saviour, and she offends him? She needs to plan this out better.

"But I feel I have a minor case of ennui," she says.

"Oh. Okay," he says, nodding his head. "What's that again?"

"It's a feeling, a sort of indescribable one," she says. "It's sort of an inexplicable dissatisfaction, I guess. Don't worry. I'm sure the feeling will fade." She offers him a small smile.

He still looks a little confused. "Are you sure?" he finally asks. "Can I do something?" He risks another glance from the road.

Her heart warms a little. "No, really, don't worry," she says, her smile more genuine this time.

He reaches out and takes her hand, squeezing softly. "Maybe you should sing something," he says. "You left your Celine CD in here the other day. Singing always makes you feel better, right?"

She loves this boy, she really does.

He loves her, too. He even called her baby a few minutes ago. He doesn't do that often, but every time he does she feels so special, so loved. She is, after all, his baby — his sweetheart, his girl. He loves her, and she loves him, and Quinn isn't part of the equation anymore.

And Rachel will have his babies someday, his brunette, Jewish babies, and maybe he doesn't yet realise that she has their future planned, maybe he hasn't even considered their future, but he is only a teenage boy. He lives in the moment, and she can respect that. But she will sit him down, and they will talk. She doesn't want to scare him away with her intensity, but she will respect his new relationship with Jesus, and they will make this work.

She switches over from radio to CD player, and she swirls up the volume.

Finn grins as she starts to sing, and he joins in on backup vocals. Everything will be okay.

She will make it okay.

iii.

How can anybody expect him to sit in class?

Burt is in the hospital. That is not okay. And Kurt didn't even tell him. Burt had a heart attack yesterday, and Finn spent the entire night playing video games, and he didn't even find out until his mom finally called him on her drive to the hospital after her overnight shift ended.

Of course, he totally yells at Kurt like a big douche, which doesn't help, but Finn really likes Burt. And they're all like a family, aren't they? 'Cause, sure, he and Kurt have kinda had a rough relationship, but Finn has grown-up, hasn't he? And he and Kurt are cool, right?

It doesn't matter. He knows now.

Now, when he can sit in class while Burt lies in a hospital.

What can Finn do to help?

His third wish! He can use his third wish on Burt! He already used his second one yesterday, right after he got home. He knows maybe he chose, like, a lame wish, and Puck would totally laugh if he knew what Finn had actually chosen to spend his wish on, but Finn really wants to touch her boobs. Is that so bad? He loves her and stuff, and he wants to be closer to her physically.

Plus, they're boobs. And they're his. Okay, no, that sounds wrong. They're hers, but she's his, so see how that works? That sounds really possessive and stupid, though. But he can't help how he feels. And none of this matters anyway, not right now, not while Burt lies unconscious in the hospital. Burt won't die, right? Shit. What if he dies? What will happen to Kurt?

He can move in with Finn and his mom. He can.

But Burt won't die. He won't. That's stupid. Finn won't even think that. And he will use his third wish to help Burt. As soon as this dumb class ends, he will go home and he will take Grilled Cheesus from the fridge, and he will spend his third wish on Burt. There. That's something he can do, something he will do.

Rachel has dance, so her daddy will pick her up from that; she doesn't need a ride. He tries not to freak out as he drives straight home, focusing on his wish to save Burt. He has to make sure he words everything perfectly.

What if he only had one wish, though? What if he just wasted his wish on some stupid football game? That would suck so hard.

He makes a beeline for the fridge as soon as he arrives home, but he freezes when he sees his mom in the kitchen, her eyes red as she makes some sort of casserole. He hasn't seen her since yesterday morning.

"Mom?" he says hesitantly. She looks really messed up.

She drops her spoon at the sound of his voice, jumping slightly, and then glances over at him.

"Hi sweetie," she greets quietly. "This is for Kurt. I thought he might need . . ." Her bottom lip starts to tremble, and she closes her eyes and tilts her head up, taking a few shuddering breaths, as if to try to calm herself down and keep collected.

The first guy she loved died in a war, and now she might lose the second one from a heart attack.

He crosses the kitchen in a few strides and wraps his arms around her as tightly as he can. "I'm so sorry, Mom," he whispers. She starts to shake, crying, and he only squeezes her tighter, almost lifting her up off the ground. Her hands brush his hair, and she mumbles something to him, but he only closes his eyes and hopes she knows how much he loves her and wants everything to be okay.

He finally pulls back, and she gives him the smallest smile in the world as she wipes her tears. "I'm okay, sweetheart, I'm okay. Everything will be okay. I know you must be worried, and poor Kurt . . . this is so hard on him. Burt is all he has. And us, too. He has us. He does. And everything will be okay."

"Yeah," Finn says, nodding. "Burt, he won't . . . he won't die."

His mom reaches out and cups his face. "No. He definitely won't. I know he won't." She speaks so firmly, and her gaze is unwavering, even with her teary eyes, and he really does believe her. People survive heart attacks all the time, right? Burt is totally tough and stuff, so he'll survive. "This family has so many more years to spend together," his mom goes on. "We'll be okay."

Finn nods, and she wraps him up in another hug, and they stand that way for a long time.

She shoos him out of the kitchen eventually, because she wants to finish the casserole and take the dish to Kurt at the hospital. He offers to go with her. She tells him to do his homework and not to worry, and if Burt is still in the hospital tomorrow night, then Finn can come with her to see him.

"Everything will be okay," she repeats firmly. "Don't you worry."

Rachel calls, like, half an hour later, right after his mom leaves.

"We need to talk," she says. "Can I come over?"

"Um, yeah, sure," he says. She has that voice, the one that means serious business, and he doesn't really know what to think.

"I'll be there soon." She hangs up without another word, and he feels a little freaked. Does everything in his life have to go wrong on the same day? He hopes she isn't really upset about anything, although she did act strangely all day and all yesterday, too.

He starts to pull Grilled Cheesus out of the fridge, only to pause.

Maybe he shouldn't wish for Burt to be healthy again. If his mom is right, then he doesn't need to, and he should save the wish for something else. Like, if somebody gets hit by a car or something. And if Burt doesn't get well soon, then Finn can still use the last wish on him, right? Right.

If he even has three wishes, that is. He sighs and goes upstairs to his room to wait for Rachel.

iv.

Her heart starts to beat a little faster.

He might not have ever thought about their future before, might not have made plans the way she has, but he doesn't seem at all frightened by her plans, as if in his head this were all assumed, and he never felt the need to bother with plans, because he simply knew everything would work out.

He wants their children to be Jewish. He wants them to have children.

He even smiles as he talks, like he thinks the idea is totally cool. He uses his sweetest grin, and she knows he really means what he says, because Finn isn't slick like that. He isn't all talk and no walk, isn't someone to lie, and if he tried then she would see through him in an instant.

She can't help but lean forward and kiss him, because this is a big moment, isn't this? They've agreed on their future together. She draws back after a moment, though, and she gazes at him, his breath hot against her lips, and she can taste him on her lips, and all of the sudden she wants more.

He makes her feel a way nobody else ever has before, he makes her spine tingle, makes her stomach tighten, makes her so warm she feels as if her insides literally start to melt. And at this moment she feels all that and more, and she knows he must feel the same way.

"Let's lay down the bed," she whispers.

"Okay," he breathes.

They've reached an emotional milestone in their relationship.

They should reach a physical one, too, shouldn't they? She wants to go slow with him, wants to do their relationship right, wants to assure that they are both completely in love and devoted to one another and ready for a more physical relationship. He has always been more than okay with that, always the perfect gentlemen.

And he deserves to know she appreciates that, and he deserves to know that she appreciates how open he is to their future together. Besides, these kind of emotional moments in their relationship make her feel more ready to welcome physical moments.

And then he kisses her as her head hits the pillow, and thoughts start to give way to feelings, and everything seems perfectly natural as she softly says his name.

He easily agreed to raise their children Jewish, even with his new devotion to Jesus.

She only knows one way to match that gift. It all works perfectly, really.

"I want to give you something in exchange for what you gave me," she murmurs, and she slides his hand up, carefully placing his hand over her breast and then glancing up to see his eyes wide. She smiles and tilts her face up to kiss him again.

He squeezes her breast a little, and her breath catches. She reaches up to cup his face, pressing kisses down his neck as he glances up and mumbles something under his breath. Moments later he dives back into a kiss, and his thumb runs over breast, just brushing her skin and making her shiver. "Only the sides, Finn," she whispers. "And not under my dress."

"Uh-huh," he says, his kisses sloppy. She smiles into his lips again.

They make-out, and they've really only done this a few times. They've made-out a lot, sure, in movie theatres and the car and other places like that, but they've only been able to kiss like this, lying out on a couch or a bed, a handful of times, and she knows exactly what she wants.

She wants to feel his weight. It's so amazing, that feeling, and at this moment she needs that, because she needs more of him. She shifts slightly, raising her knees parting her legs slightly, and she lets her hands travel to his shirt collar. She tugs.

"Come here, Finny," she murmurs.

And she has him between her legs in an instant. She drags her tongue slowly over his, and he still has her breast in his hand, squeezing and petting and touching in these ways that make her ache a little, and she nips on his bottom lip slightly. He shifts, his lips traveling down her jaw, and she realises he has himself propped up on one hand. That won't last long.

"Turn over," she instructs, gently pressing his chest. He does, and he nearly rolls off the bed, but she traps him between her legs, saving him as she straddles him, and their kisses go on. His hands travel up and tangle in her hair, only to skim back down. He takes a breast in each hand, and he gasps a little into her mouth, tensing slightly beneath her.

She knows how easily he works himself up, so she kisses the corner of his lip, and then his cheek, and then the hinge of his jaw, before she tugs his earlobe into his ear and gently sucks, giving him a minute or two to calm himself down.

He turns his head and captures her mouth in another kiss pretty quickly, and one of his hands slides around her back and then down towards her behind, only for his hand to hesitate and skate back up to grasp her breast again as his other hand moves down tentatively. She giggles a little into his mouth. Clearly, he needs her help.

She takes one of his hands and presses her breast into his palm, her breath catching again, and then she slides his other hand down to her behind, and she grins into his mouth when he whimpers a little. His kisses grow even sloppier, and she doesn't care at all.

His fingers skim against the lining of her dress, touching the skin at the top of her breast, and she lets out a small moan herself, rocking involuntarily against him, and she can barely think, and she needs to stop. She needs to stop. Stop, Rachel.

She pulls back. "Okay, okay," she says, sitting up and resting her hands on his chest as she catches her breath. He nods, and his hands make their way to her waist. She smiles at him, and he grins at her, and suddenly she dissolves into giggles before she moves off of him.

She can't really believe how much she enjoyed that.

She's shocked, in fact, because she very nearly gave him permission to go ahead and dip his hand under her dress, and that is too fast, right? Yes. That's much too fast. They have all the time in the world, he and she, and they have no need to rush.

She starts to lie back, and his arm snakes beneath her to serve as the perfect pillow.

"That was awesome," he says, still sounding a little breathless.

She only bites her lip and nods. It's quiet for a moment, and she glances over at him. He looks so pleased, and she pinks slightly as she turns her head and snuggles against him. His arm bends and his hand toys with a little of her hair.

Even as she gazes at him, though, his smile fades a little.

"Are you okay?" she asks.

"Yeah," he says. "'Cause that really was awesome." He smiles quickly, and then his voice goes soft. "I just thought . . . of Burt. In the hospital, you know."

"I'm sorry," she says. "This is really hard for you, isn't it?"

He nods. "I know I resisted at first, but I really like Burt, and I like the idea of having a real family, or whatever. I mean, I kind of already think of him as my step-dad." He pauses, blushing and staring at the ceiling. "That sounds totally stupid, I know —"

"It doesn't sound stupid at all," she says, and she kisses his cheek. "And Burt will be okay."

"That's what my mom says. She says I shouldn't worry."

"You shouldn't," she assures. It's quiet again, the good kind of quiet. But she can't really help herself. "How many children do you think we should have?" she asks casually.

He shrugs a little. "I don't know. Three or four. I like kids."

She fights back a full-fledged grin. "Come on," she says, sitting up and grabbing his hand. "Let's go downstairs. I'll make you a sandwich, and then we can start on our homework."

"Cool," he says, following her out of the bedroom. "Can it be grilled cheese?"

"Of course."

"I really, really love grilled cheese."

v.

His feet pound against the pavement, and he feels himself fall into, like, the rhythm of the run.

He doesn't really know any other way to make himself feel better. He might be out here running circles around the neighbourhood for a while, actually, if only because he needs as much adrenaline and endorphins as possible to make him feel something other than completely shitty. It's been exactly a week since he found out that Burt was in the hospital, and it's been a really suck-y week.

Everything was cool for a while, after his mom and Rachel promised him everything would be okay, and he and Rachel had that totally hot make-out that included second base, which was so, so awesome. And Kurt was still pretty messed up, but Finn couldn't really do anything for him, and he couldn't resist making his third wish: to be quarterback again.

And then of course Puck had to go and make him feel totally bad, and Puck was right.

Finn should have prayed for Burt. He should have used his third wish on Burt.

He guilty asked for a fourth one, but he felt like that wouldn't be enough. He needed to do something more. He found Rachel, and he told her that he still felt pretty bad about Burt, was still worried that everything might not be okay. And Rachel totally came to his rescue.

She recruited Mercedes and Quinn because "at least one of us can help," and then she sang this really pretty song in the hospital and outside. She was pretty much the most awesome person ever. She is the most awesome person ever. Some people might think she's crazy, but they don't understand her at all.

They don't understand how amazing she really is.

But Burt didn't wake up, not even after the girls all sang to him and prayed for him. He still hasn't woken up, and Kurt is totally pissed and upset, and Finn doesn't know what to do.

Stuff only got crazier on Friday, when the football game landed Sam on the bench and made Finn quarterback again. The third wish totally worked. All the wishes worked. Finn was sure he had a direct line to God. But he didn't know if he could still help Burt. He really, really wanted to. He heard his mom cry every night down the hall — he still does — and he could barely look at Kurt, and he had to help, especially since he had completely screwed Sam. He needed to help somebody.

He freaked out all weekend, and then on Monday he went to talk to Ms. Pillsbury, and she basically told him that he was an idiot, and he had no way to talk with God.

What is he supposed to do now, then?

Burt is still in the hospital, and Finn can't do anything for him.

He runs, and he tries not to be too pissed at himself. He is pissed at himself, though, and this stupid run doesn't change that.

He really has been a selfish jerk all week, wishing for stupid stuff even if his wishes weren't really magical prayers, or whatever. How could he have prayed to a grilled cheese sandwich, anyway? Is he really that dumb? He is, isn't he?

He doesn't even know anything about Jesus or religion. But, like, it was nice to have something to count on, and it kinda sucked to lose that. That might seem silly to other people, but he honestly felt — feels — like he lost something big. What else does he have to count on now?

Basically, all he can think of is Rachel, which isn't actually so bad. He can always count on Rachel. She never lets him down, and she always supports him, and she always knows how to make everything better.

Can Rachel be his religion? Or is that too creepy?

But, damn it, none of his stupid problems matter, because Burt is still unconscious in the hospital.

Finn pushes himself to run a little faster, to focus on the exercise and not on Burt.

It doesn't really work.

vi.

She uses her ruler to line up the small, sticky picture corners perfectly on the scrapbook page.

Her daddy is golfing and her dad is gardening, and she has the kitchen to herself. She treated herself to blueberry crisps earlier, and she already practised on the piano and with her voice for two hours this morning, so she has the entire afternoon to work on her scrapbook. Smiling, she fits the picture of her and Finn at the lake into the picture corners. There. Perfect.

She can't wait to show Finn how far the scrapbook has come along. She knows the last week and a half has been hard on him, and she really wants to cheer him up. She can't even imagine if one of her dads were in the hospital like Burt. Of course, Burt isn't actually his father, but he might as well be, because there really isn't anyone else. And Rachel knows Burt makes a good father to Kurt.

She wonders what the chances are that Mrs. Hudson and Mr. Hummel will marry. She loves weddings, and Finn always looks so handsome dressed up. It would be amazing. She and Kurt might not always get along well, but if they became as good as family maybe they could manage to try at least a tentative friendship.

Her phone goes off, and she smiles a little when she sees his name on the screen. "Hi Finn."

"Hey! Burt's okay!" The words tumble immediately from his mouth.

"He is?" Rachel asks, smiling and sitting back in her chair.

"Yeah! He woke up this morning! Kurt was there with him. Me and Mom went to the hospital to see him. I'm just outside in the hall right now. I had to call you and let you know."

"I appreciate that," she says. She doesn't bother to correct his grammar. She'll let this one slide. He is, after all, too excited to worry about grammar. "And I'm so glad he's okay," she adds softly. She really is.

"Yeah, me, too," he says, and he sounds so happy. "You wanna come see him?"

"Are you sure? I don't want to impose. He should probably be with family right now."

"You're like family," he says. "Come on. Burt loves you. He says you're spunky."

She giggles. "Okay. I need to change, though! I don't look even close to presentable. But I can be at the hospital in a little over a half hour!" She stands, trapping the cell phone between her shoulder and her ear and starting to clean up all her art supplies.

"You don't need to change," he says. "I'm sure you look great. Just come. I wanna see you!"

She laughs at his enthusiasm. "No, no, I need to change, but I'll be there very soon!"

"Okay, cool." His voice goes soft. "I love you, Rach."

She smiles a little to herself. "I love you, too."

She hangs up, finishes cleaning up her supplies, and heads upstairs to change. She wants to look nice for Burt, and to impress Carole, too, and of course she always needs to look nice for Finn. She can't let him see her with her hair in a messy ponytail and a faded t-shirt that doesn't match her shorts. She isn't pretty enough to look gorgeous even like that. She needs to put on perfume, too. She can never smell too good, after all.

She catches Finn sometimes, with his nose in her hair, smelling her. She really likes that.

She thinks of their last make-out, and she bites her lip a little. She made-out with Puck, and with Jesse, too, but she never let either of them touch her like that. Was she too hasty to let Finn touch her? No. They've been together for months, and he loves her, and he deserved —

— and she wanted him to touch her. She wants him to touch her even more.

Is that bad? Is that natural? Is she thinking about this too much? She shouldn't think so much.

She should focus on Burt right now, and his happy recovery.

She blows her dad a kiss, shouting out the good news, as she heads to her car.

She sees Carole first when she arrives at the hospital, and the woman pulls her into a hug. "It's so sweet of you to stop by!" Carole says, kissing the top of her head. Rachel only nods shyly. She really, really likes Carole, and she wants Carole to like her, too. Finn says she does, but Rachel still feels slightly nervous around her, afraid to lose her approval.

Carole will be her mother-in-law someday, after all.

Finn kisses her quickly when he sees her, and then she greets Kurt, who happily hugs her, actually lifting her up off the ground a little, and she doesn't think she has ever seen him so happy in her life. She laughs a little, returns his hug, and then she gives a gentle one to Burt.

"I'm really happy you're okay, Mr. Hummel," she tells him.

"Me, too, kid," he replies. "Me, too."

Carole starts to fuss over him, and Kurt takes a hold of his hand, and Finn only sits in a chair by the bed with this big grin on his face. Rachel goes over and slips into his lap, snuggling against him as Carole starts to talk about a new diet. "I have some wonderful vegan recipes you could try!" Rachel offers. Burt groans, but Carole beams at Rachel.

Finn kisses her cheek.

Everything really did turn out okay.

vii.

"Can I ask you a question?"

He shrugs. "Sure." She doesn't usually ask for permission.

His house is empty, with his mom and Kurt both still at the hospital, and he and Rachel both sit cross-legged on his bed, her with a biography in hand and he with his math homework. Every time he finishes another problem, she leans forward and rewards him with a kiss.

She puts her Wicked bookmark in place and closes her book. "It's a personal question," she warns.

"Um, okay," he says, closing his math textbook to give her his full attention or whatever.

"I can't help but be curious from where your newfound love of Jesus stems," she says. "Why did you suddenly decide to embrace Jesus? I was under the impression you weren't particularly religious. Did something happen?"

He doesn't know what to say, and he kind of just gapes at her.

Because he can't say that he prayed to a sandwich for a week. That would sound so stupid, and Rachel would probably be weirded out, or, worse, demand to know what he prayed for, and then she would probably be pissed. He just can't tell her.

"Um, I — I don't know," he says. "I . . . I don't know. You know, it was just, like, temporary. I'm not really — I'm not religious. I'm not — I don't know."

She frowns a little.

"It was a dream!" he supplies suddenly. "It was a dream." He nods. "A weird dream, actually. I don't remember that much, but there was, like, um a grilled cheese sandwich, I think, and stuff, and so, yeah. I just kinda wanted something to count on, and the dream made it seem like I could count on Jesus, or whatever. But I'm over it. So, yeah."

She leans forward and kisses him sweetly, and he touches her back hesitantly.

"Dreams can be kind of crazy," she murmurs. She pulls back and smiles at him. "Thank you for telling me."

But now he feels bad. He, like, lied to her. "Um, yeah, it was really crazy," he says, trying to think of the right way to, like, just sneak the truth in. "In the dream, actually, the grilled cheese sandwich had a picture of Jesus in it. Like, burned in the bread. It was cool looking. In the dream, I mean."

She nods. "Finn?"

"Yeah?"

"It wasn't a dream, was it?"

"Um, I — it was — what do you — what you do even mean? Of course it was a dream."

"Really?" she says, raising her eyebrows at him.

"I . . . okay, fine. But don't laugh! I made this grilled cheese sandwich, and it, like, it had this perfect picture of Jesus in it! So I asked it to help us win the football game, because, you know, why not? And then we did! So —"

She starts to laugh.

"Don't . . . don't — okay I know it was stupid!"

But she leans forward and kisses him, still laughing into his lips as he falls back against the pillows and brings her with him. He wraps his arms around her waist. Okay. That wasn't so bad, and now she knows, and he doesn't have to lie to her.

"What else did you wish for?" she asks, biting his bottom lip a little and then running her tongue soothingly over the bite.

"Just random stuff," he says. He runs his hand up and down her back and tries to pull her into a kiss again, and she giggles a little but lets him. She rests her hands on the pillow on either side of his head, and her hair falls down in a curtain around their faces, and her kisses turn slower.

He slowly slides his hands up to her boobs, because he really hopes that wasn't a one-time deal. It can't be. How can he ever make-out with her again and not want to touch her boobs, now that he knows how completely awesome that is? He doesn't want to upset her, though, or, like, make her feel pressured.

"Rachel," he breathes, "can I —?" He brushes his fingers against the underside of her boobs.

She pants a little into his lips, and then she draws back enough to look at him. She bites her lip. He knows she's thinking, like, heavy stuff, but he doesn't know what. "I'm not ready for more," she finally says slowly. He knows. He starts to say so, but she covers his mouth with her hand. "And I won't be for a while. It isn't a matter of principle. It's simply how I personally feel."

He nods.

"But I think it's safe to say that my sweet, loving boyfriend —" she pauses, smiling this totally sexy smile that she probably doesn't even know is really, really hot, "— is more than welcome to touch my boobs whenever he likes. With concern for propriety, of course."

He starts to nod again, eyes wide. Is she for real? This is awesome. This is pretty much the best thing that has ever happened to him in his entire life. And then she kisses him again, holding herself up on her knees and grabbing both his hands, sliding them down. He's confused for a moment, because her boobs are in the other direction, and he thought she just said he could touch them. But she slips his hands under her shirt, and she skates them up over the skin of her stomach, and —

Holy shit.

Her boobs, her soft, warm, naked boobs, are totally in his hands.

She kisses him, sinking into him and breathing heavily into his lips. She digs her fingers into his hair as he brushes his thumbs across her boobs and feels the weight and tries not to come in his pants immediately. Her eyes flicker open for a moment, and he stares up at her, their noses brushing. Her gaze is darker, slightly different, and he goes a little harder when he realises what that probably means. She smiles sweetly, nuzzling her nose against his.

And he knows that Rachel totally is his religion.

tbc


a/n: this one was another with both inner monologues as well as more legit missing scenes. I think I liked the last chapter better, but I've made you wait long enough for this one! I hope it was worth the wait. You won't have to wait as long for Duets, I promise!

Also, I don't know if I am going to go through all of the first ten episodes. I might only do through "Furt." We'll see. But I definitely didn't abandon this story, and there are several more chapters to come! Thanks for your patience thus far :)