Set after 'A Very Glee Christmas'. I want to be writing happy, positive fics at the minute, but no matter how hard I try, I just can't. Therefore, I'm just going to go with this angsty muse for a while, and hopefully it'll run out and I'll get the motivation to continue with Jigsaw.
This isn't like anything I've written before, and I'd just like to make it clear that I'm a Finchel shipper through and through; this just wouldn't leave me alone. I hope I'm not horribly out of character, so feedback would be amazing if you have the time. I miss Finchel so much like you have no idea.
Disclaimer: I don't own Glee, or The Offspring, and there are a few (okay, a lot of) instances of strong language.
Christmas comes and goes for Finn, and when it all comes down to it, he has a pretty shitty time. His mom insists that they spend the holiday at the Hummel household, and when all Finn wants to do is stay in bed and cry like some huge baby, the last thing he needs is to be under Kurt's constant supervision, listening to the hundred and one reasons why he's an idiot for giving up on Rachel.
Part of him is glad to be single, but that part of him fucking sucks, because the name Finn sounds so lonely without Rachel supporting it; they were Finchel for God's sake, and now he's just Finn Hudson again. How can that be right?
Before he knows it, it's time to go back to school, and he has to see Rachel every single day. When he doesn't run into her in the hallways (and he always runs into her, whether he wants to or not), he's sees her in class, and in glee, and everywhere he goes.
He knows that she's stalking him. Rachel's never been the most subtle of people, and he's not that stupid; he can tell she's following him because he bumps into her in McDonald's, and she never eats there. He doesn't say anything though. He uses his well practiced smile and manages a small greeting, and then he's home again, crying, wondering if the searing pain in his chest will ever subside.
Rachel's not the only one who won't leave him alone. Most of the glee club have learnt to keep their distance from him since the breakup, he's no fun to be around anymore, but Quinn seems to linger around him all the time, even if she doesn't speak to him.
Finn doesn't bother worrying about it. She and Sam are so sweet that it makes him feel sick to his stomach, and he's noticed the ring on her finger, even if he's not sure what that means.
Are they engaged? Like, engaged to be married? 'Cause that's intense, and he feels his head spin just thinking about it because they're still in high school, and Sam and Quinn have only been dating five minutes, and it pisses him off that he isn't engaged to Rachel, and then he gets even more pissed because there's no way in hell he'd get engaged to someone so vindictive (you know what's really fucking great? Rachel taught him that word).
He spends the rest of the week thinking about marriage, which isn't very productive, like, at all. It's not very healthy either, because he's only making his heartache worse, but he can't stop. He really, really wants to know if Sam proposed to Quinn, and why? He doesn't even know. Quinn is old news, he's not interested in her anymore, but it's still freaking weird, because she was his first girlfriend, his first love (did he love her? Who the hell cares?) , and now she's got her future planned out. It should be Finchel, not... Quam? Suinn?
Finn zones out in Spanish because Finchel beats the hell out of Quam, like, in so many ways. Finchel sounds like a pastry or something, warm and fluffy and right, and Quam sounds like Spam, and he's hated Spam for as long as he can remember.
He hopes that he isn't jealous, 'cause he can't even tell for sure, but he vows to himself not to worry about it anymore. He's single, and it has nothing to do with him.
Quinn approaches him after glee rehearsal, and Finn notices straight away that Rachel looks affronted and frustrated, but he doesn't know why (or care, he has to pretend not to care). He only just notices that Sam isn't around, and he remembers that he's at physiotherapy for his shoulder (didn't that heal months ago? Whatever), and then Quinn touches his arm, and he finds himself listening to the most surreal thing ever.
"Finn," she says softly, "I think we should become a couple again."
He knows that Rachel's overheard them 'cause she looks just as horrified as he does. "What?" he blurts dumbly, his heart pounding in his throat. He can still see Rachel out of the corner of his eye, and she looks like she's either going to kill Quinn or kill him.
"I know this may seem out of the blue," she starts, but Finn is already backing away because there's nothing he wants less right now. "Finn, please, just hear me out. We were great together!"
"Until you cheated on me!" he splutters, "just like you're trying to do to Sam now! I'm not interested." He practically sprints from the choir room, ignoring everyone who is calling his name; he can hear Rachel's voice among them, but he doesn't stop or turn around because he's frightened he's going to have a panic attack before he even makes it home.
Who the hell does Quinn think she is? She broke him once before, and here she is, trying to do the same to Sam. He finds himself in his truck and smacks his head against the wheel repeatedly. He doesn't need this, not now, not ever. He laughs without any humour whatsoever because it's just fucking typical. Why? He doesn't know, it just is.
He drives home, eats his dinner, goes to bed, and sleeps. He wonders if it was a really stupid dream, but he arrives at school and Quinn is standing by his locker wearing that damn ring and all he can do is furrow his brow, gawp a bit, and shake his head.
"I'm sorry if I freaked you out," she whispers, looking straight into his eyes.
"Don't apologise, just leave me alone."
She rests the back of her head against his locker door, which sucks because he needs to get in there, and he kind of doesn't want to manhandle her.
"I am truly sorry for what I did to you Finn, and what happened between you and Berry." She looks sorry, but he doubts that she gives a damn about Finchel (he can't stop saying that word, it's like some new curse that he shouldn't be saying but it feels powerful and wrong and he likes it). "But I think you need to move on, and I want to help." And she touches his arm, and he doesn't shake her off, but he doesn't feel it, not really. Obviously, he can see her hand upon his jacket and he can feel it press against him, but it's just Quinn, and if it was Rachel touching him, he'd feel it.
God damn it, he's a walking disaster, and he doesn't understand half of what he thinks.
"You want to help?" he asks slowly, trying to take it all in. He sees the way she smiles like she's just secured some shitty little victory, and in a brief second, everything flashes before him. He remembers how good he felt walking the halls with Quinn on his arm, knowing that they were the most popular kids in school. He remembers the make out sessions, and the celibacy club meetings, and the way she'd wipe slushie from his hair, and he knows that if he just said yes right now, everything would be the same again. He'd be the popular quarterback douche, and she'd be the popular cheerleader bitch, and they'd walk around imagining that they were liked when in reality everyone hated them.
"Of course I do," she answers, and she flicks her obnoxious ponytail in the air like a dog wagging its tail.
"Then stay the hell away from me, and have the decency to set Sam straight 'cause he's a good guy, and he deserves better than your lies." He resists the urge to kick the lockers (to kick Quinn, he thinks darkly) and he storms off to his math class, even though he's pretty sure he's supposed to be in biology. He sees Rachel watching triumphantly round a corner, but he doesn't bother to look at her properly because he'll have to set the record straight with her too, and he knows that's gonna be the death of him.
It happens sooner than later. She corners him at lunch with a soft smirk on her lips, and at one time, he would have kissed those lips so he could be in on the secret too, but he doesn't now, and he looks away so he doesn't get the urge to.
"I heard you and Quinn talking this morning," she says brightly, like nothing's wrong. They haven't had a proper conversation in weeks, and yet here she is, acting all superior because she thinks she's the reason he turned the blonde down. "I'm very proud of you Finn, and it gives me hope for our relationship."
"There is no 'our'," he says blankly. She looks like she's just been punched, and the idea of Rachel being punched makes him want to cry out in anger, but he looks at her like she's just any other girl, because she doesn't have the luxury of being anyone else. "Finchel is over, we're over, everything between us is over. Go and be Puck's fuck buddy or whatever it is you're looking for."
He doesn't sleep that night because all he can see is the way Rachel's face crumples at his horrible, harsh words, but they're true, for a change, and no matter how hard it is for him to accept it, they're over. He manages to close his eyes, but he sees her face again, and he ends up biting his knuckle to stop himself from screaming. He draws blood, and it hurts like a bitch, but that's nothing compared to the rest of the shit that he's dealing with.
He finally does sleep, but he wakes up in a cold sweat, and he cries to himself in the shower.
Glee rehearsals kill him. It's the beginning of February, and clever Mr Schuester has decided to give them a Valentine's day assignment to work on. As much as he respects him (and loves him... is he allowed to say that?), Finn wants nothing more than to punch their teacher square in the jaw. How insensitive can that guy be? He didn't care when Finchel (Finchel Finchel Finchel fucking Finchel) split, and he doesn't care now. He obviously doesn't care when he gives Finn and Rachel a duet, and when Rachel refuses, and Finn refuses too, he gives them the evil eye as if it's their fault.
Valentine's day; dear God. The assignment is to sing a love song to your partner; so original. Quinn pairs up with Sam, and she's still wearing the dumbass ring. Rachel pairs up with Puck, and Finn feels the last bit of his love for her break away and smash, like the time he accidentally knocked over his mom's glass cabinet. It went everywhere, and he somehow managed to get a piece in his foot, and there was all this fuss over a stupid piece of glass, and he doesn't know why he's thinking about that; the glass came out, his foot was sore, and that was that.
Artie and Brittany are a pair, Mike and Tina are a pair, Mercedes and Lauren are a pair, and that leaves Santana, who Finn hasn't spoken to since Christmas.
"Is it okay if I work with you?" she asks, and not in a malicious way either; she says it softly and carefully like there's still glass all over the floor, like she's tiptoeing around it to stay safe, and Finn really appreciates that.
"Yeah, that'll be cool," he smiles. Fuck, he's smiling, and his smile disappears.
"Is everything okay?" Santana whispers, and she places her hand over Finn's, and he doesn't even pull away.
"Yeah, sorry, I'm just... Don't worry about it." They turn their attention back to Mr Schue, who's rambling on about something Finn doesn't care about, and he only just realises that Santana's hand is still on his, and he still doesn't pull away. He's royally fucked up.
Santana's in his bedroom, telling him about her day, and he listens, and he doesn't even fake listen. He wonders if he misjudged her. Like, here she is, one of the biggest bitches in school, and though she ruined Finchel (the enjoyment has disappeared from the word now), she seems genuinely nice, you know, when she's not insulting people.
She hasn't insulted anyone though, not over the past two weeks that they've been hanging out. She laughs at his jokes and smiles when he smiles, and she doesn't bring up her many sexual escapades, and Finn wonders if this is what it feels like to get over someone. Since being in Santana's company, he thinks about Rachel less and less, and when he sees her talking to Puck, he barely feels the need to kick the jackass to the ground. Huh.
"Are you nervous about tomorrow?" she asks, and she's trailing her hand along his arm as they sit on his bed.
"Our performance? Yeah." He doesn't elaborate, but tries to decipher the feeling in his stomach as she touches him.
"Valentine's day... Is it gonna be rough for you, with Berry and all?"
He looks at her, and she doesn't seem to be rubbing it in; she looks concerned for his welfare, and he just can't get used to that. "I'll manage," he says regretfully.
When she kisses him, he kisses her back, but not out of attraction; it's just instinct. He's surprised that she wants anything to do with him, and she does, because her hand travels up his stomach, and he knows what she wants because that's all she ever wants, and he has a decision to make.
Is there any hope for Finchel? (Finchel Finchel Finchel... He hates that it's lost its ring). Because he knows full well that if they have Finntana sex (Finntana Finntana Finntana... that doesn't have a ring at all), that would spell game over for him and Rachel.
He doesn't even dwell on Quinn's offer because that's never been an option.
Santana's hand cups him through his jeans, and he wants to puke, like, really badly, which answers his dilemma for him, doesn't it?
Rachel's singing with Puck (Puckleberry Puckleberry fucking Puckleberry).
He kisses her back with more strength and forced passion, and though they kiss and roll and tumble and groan it doesn't last long, and a numbness spreads through his body, because he's just ruined himself, hasn't he? He's had sex with Santana (Finntana through and through), and when Rachel finds out, she's going to have sex with Puck, and then they'll be alienated from each other, and it will all be over for them.
Santana sings Hopelessly Devoted To You in front of the glee club. They chose a Grease theme, and only now does Finn realise that when he and Rachel sung together for the first time, it was a frickin' Grease song; he only works that out as he's watching Santana blow everyone away with her amazing vocals and her beauty; it's a shame that neither of those things impress him.
No, he has to put things in perspective. Quinn betrayed him and Rachel betrayed him, whereas Santana has always been who she says she is. He needs that. Does anyone notice that he has no self esteem anymore? He doesn't volunteer himself for solos, he doesn't bother to wear anything remotely colourful, and he rarely ever cracks a smile, 'cause girls tore down his confidence.
But Santana didn't. She's trying to build it back up with him, and he needs that, he needs that.
He sings the Sandy drive-in song, even if it doesn't make much sense. He doesn't look at anyone but Santana when he sings, and though he should feel good inside when she blows him a kiss and gives him a beautiful smile, he doesn't, not anymore. He finishes his song (he knows he didn't hit most of the notes but he doesn't give a crap), sits beside his girlfriend (he can't believe they're Finntana now), and he watches as Puck stands in front of them all and sings a fucking Taylor Swift song to Rachel. He doesn't know if they're dating, or if the song is supposed to be metaphorical or some shit, but it penetrates his numb armour, and when Rachel sings Everything I Do, I Do It For You, it's like she's stuck an invisible sword right into his heart.
Angry, emotional sex doesn't really solve much. Santana insists that doing it in the janitor's closet is one of the hottest things ever, but he doesn't feel anything, apart from the burn of bleach on his ass 'cause he's pressed against some floor cleaning chemical. All the time, as he's bouncing Santana in his lap, attempting to enjoy himself, he sadistically wishes that Rachel would just wander into the closet so that she could see for herself what a mess he is (Finntana has trumped Finchel, how does that even work?).
It's March, and they're still dating, Finn and Santana. The spark, whatever it was in the first place, disappeared as soon as it had begun, but he clings to her, because she makes him feel better about himself.
Rachel and Puck aren't dating, but she doesn't follow Finn around anymore, and she doesn't linger near his locker, and she doesn't jump at the chance to sing with him. Finntana has ruined her idea of Finchel too, and she simply hides her true feelings, if she has any.
Finn's not happy, not happy at all, but that's been the case for months. He's barely scraping through his classes, he doesn't eat like he used to, and he's so sick of Santana. The whole nice girl act was, clearly, just an act, and she doesn't bother to hide her annoyance with him every time they have to be in each other's company.
It's Puck she's after, not Finn. He wonders if it was some jealousy related thing that made her pounce on him, but he tries not to think about that, because people are always doing stuff with or for Puck, and he still hates the fucker.
I wrote her off for the tenth time today
And practiced all the things I would say
Finn decides to end it because he can't cope anymore. He remembers Quinn's ring (Quam, God, why does that make him so mad?), and he tries to imagine Santana wearing his ring, and he just can't, because there's no way in hell that he's spending the rest of his miserable life with Santana. He tells her to come over, promises her alcohol and a good time (she's very demanding these days), and he plans to tell her the truth, that's he not over Rachel, and never will be.
But she came over, I lost my nerve
I took her back and made her dessert
She gets mad when the wine coolers turn out to be soda. He soon figures out that she was at Puck's doing who knows what, but she promises him that she didn't do anything, and you know what? He believes her. He doesn't even know why, but it suddenly dawns on him that if he ends it, he'll be on his own, and he doesn't think he can handle that.
No, that's not right.
He doesn't think he can handle his third girlfriend cheating on him with the same douche bag. So he smiles. He smiles and promises her that he'll get alcohol next time, and they end up having sex, even though he imagines it's Rachel for the whole six minutes that it lasts (he misses the days of the mailman).
Now I know I'm being used
That's okay man, 'cause I like the abuse
He's pretty sure she's sexting Puck while he pretends to sleep it off, but he doesn't say anything, and pretends to mutter her name so that she feels guilty and sees the error of her ways.
I know she's playing with me
That's okay 'cause I've got no self esteem
It's April, and Finn can't believe where the days have gone. Rachel's dating some kid in the AV club, but if Jacob Ben Israel's blog can be believed, she's doing it to look like she's over her last boyfriend, and Finn pretends that Finchel never existed for his own sanity.
He doesn't get the solos and duets in glee club anymore, and he has to sit and watch Quam being forced down his throat whenever he makes rehearsals (which isn't very often, not that Mr Schue cares).
We make plans to go out at night
You have to hand it to him, Finn makes an effort with Santana, even though everyone in school knows that she's seeing Puck on the side. Finn imagines it's just hateful rumours though, 'cause Santana loves him (probably), and he loves her (yeah, probably), and she wouldn't do that to him.
He waits for her so he can take her out to Breadstix, 'cause he knows how much she loves it there, and he waits, and he waits, and he stays calm because she wouldn't cheat on him.
I wait till two then I turn out the light
His mom tells him to go to bed, tells him that Breadstix is closed, that she's not coming, and he wonders if he forgot to remind Santana about their date (he knows for a fact that he reminded her six times that day, but maybe he didn't?)
All this rejection's got me so low
If she keeps it up I just might tell her so
She doesn't even have the courtesy to apologise to him when he sees her at school. Finn brings it up in their limited conversation, and she brushes him off like fluff on her Cheerios' outfit. He tells her it doesn't matter. It does though.
When she's saying that she wants only me
He suggests going to a motel for the night to spice things up, but she tells him she's too busy. He doesn't question her and stays awake most of the night, wondering if she's happy like he's (not) happy.
Finntana, that sounds so stupid.
Then I wonder why she sleeps with my friends
He hears Puck bragging about his conquest in the locker room the next day. Finn pretends that there are loads of other Santanas at school, that Puck didn't bang his girl on a motel dresser, and God, he knows that it's her, but he pretends he doesn't for his own sanity, because they're Finntana, and they have to be stronger than Fuinn (lame name) and Finchel (he misses that like hell).
When she's saying that I'm like a disease
Santana yells a lot, and over the stupidest things. Finn suggests seeing a movie, and she blows up, telling him that she's had a hair appointment booked for months, and that he's inconsiderate and stupid. He agrees, he says, and he apologises for forgetting.
Then I wonder how much more I can spend
Finn gets a text; 'Going out with Britt, don't bother contacting me'. He throws his cell at his bedroom wall (no more cowboys in the Hummel house) because she doesn't even leave a kiss or a smile or anything, not like Rachel, who would sign her texts with her name, two kisses and a symbol that was supposed to represent a star.
Well I guess I should stick up for myself
But I really think it's better this way
"Finn, Santana, how about you two take the song this week?" suggests Mr Schue, tentatively handing them some sheet music. Finn thinks he can finally perform again because Rachel smiled at him in the cafeteria and he's feeling optimistic, but before he knows it, the paper is in the air and Santana is pushing him roughly because his voice doesn't suit hers.
"I don't want to sing with him when he sounds like a bunch of cats being thrown into a river."
You know what hurts more than the malice in her voice? The fact that no one defends him. Finn glances numbly around the choir room, and nobody gives a shit. He looks at Rachel, who glances away, and he knows that this is how she was treated when they were still fluffy, tasty Finchel. He didn't stick up for her, and only now, months after all the crap and drama, he realises that he was a lousy boyfriend.
The more you suffer, the more it shows you really care
Right? Yeah yeah yeah
It's May. They're not even a couple anymore, not that they ever officially ended it. Finntana is in limbo, because Finn still texts her and sleeps with her, but he sees her drooling over Puck, and he sees Puck wolf whistling at her. He doesn't do anything though because he's past caring.
Rachel has split up with the AV kid. Jacob tells him exclusively that the dick tried to feel her up one too many times, and he gets bile in his throat because Rachel deserves better than that.
Not that she's any of his business anymore.
Now I'll relate this little bit
That happens more than I'd like to admit
Finn thinks about making things better for himself. Kurt, whenever he's home from Dalton, tries his hardest to pull him out of his funk, and though he usually declines his help, he decides to agree. Why? Rachel, Finchel, whatever it is. She was slushied by Karofsky, and as much as Finn wants to stand up for her, he knows he can't when he's weak and lifeless and loveless.
Late at night she knocks at my door
He hears Santana slurring through the door, and he knows he shouldn't let her in because he's on the mend now, he's healing.
Drunk again and looking to score
Finn opens it so she can stagger in because as much as he hates her (he hates her now and he hates the word Finntana), he doesn't want her getting hurt, and she's too drunk to take care of herself (not that he can; he can barely take care of himself).
Now I know I should say no
"Hey handsome H-H-Hudson," she hiccups, catching his mouth in a boozy kiss. He tries to push her away, but she's strong, and he doesn't want to hurt her, he doesn't want to hurt her.
But that's kind of hard when she's ready to go
He humours her, and they only last for three minutes before she's passed out on his bed, snoring. How is it possible that this is who he is now? The name Finn Hudson used to be something he was proud of, if that even makes sense. He had talent, he had Rachel (Finchel, it's always been Finchel), he had friends, and confidence, and now what does he have? No self esteem, and a drunken sort-of girlfriend who uses him all the time.
I may be dumb, but I'm not a dweeb
"Rachel, can I talk to you?" He doesn't know why he's doing this, or what he's going to say, but he's looking down at the one girl that can rescue him, because she's done it before. Has she always been so small and... bright looking? She looks like she's glowing, and she looks really healthy, and her eyes are shiny, and he realises that she looks the same as she always did; he's the one that looks different. She can see that too. His eyes are sullen, his skin is pale, and he has a constant grimace on his face that won't disappear (he knows, he's tried to smile but he can't).
"What could you possibly want Finn?"
He hates that her voice is cold and wary, that he's made her like that. It was her fault in the beginning, somewhere, some shit to do with Puck, but he's moved so far past that point that he doesn't blame her at all anymore. So she kissed Puck, big deal; he's fucked Santana too many times to count.
I'm just a sucker with no self esteem
"Help," he says softly. They're standing beside her locker, the place he used to wait for her anxiously so he could kiss her and she could kiss him, and he doesn't even feel like the same person anymore.
He cries. And cries. Everything he's been void of for the past six months rushes out, and Rachel has to struggle to hold him up. She leads him to his truck, even though they have more classes to go to, and she hands him a tissue and smiles, and man, why has he been such a fucking idiot?
"I'll help you Finn," she whispers, and he's gotten so used to hearing Santana's lies that Finn is caught off guard by the truth, and cries even more (does it matter that he doesn't care?).
"Finchel," he blurts out as he blows his noise, rubbing at his sore eyes. Rachel looks at him like he's insane, and yeah, that's probably true. "I miss it... Finchel."
She touches his hand and pats it lovingly (no, he must have made that word up 'cause there's no way she'd want anything to do with him), and then she nods. "I miss Finchel too."
He feels a sliver of self esteem, hope, and love reappear in his heart.
It's always been fucking Finchel.