Disclaimer: I do not own the characters from glee.
AN: Your reviews are amazing- thank you!
Part 3 out of 3. However, I have enjoyed writing this, and hope to continue this at some point if people think I should, so thanks to the support of my lovely readers :)
Comments welcome :)
Part 3: Beautiful
"That's beautiful San! And it's huge!"
Santana grinned widely, admiring the engagement ring herself on her hand flat on the kitchen table.
"I know right? It was his grandmother's…"
She squirmed slightly, blushing.
Rachel still couldn't believe that a girl who had spent most of high school relating her appearance to a variety of unattractive men, and had had a certain reputation of a high degree of promiscuity, would sit over coffee for often hours at a time and blush whenever her, now fiancé, was mentioned.
"You still have that awful cat shaped teapot? I thought you would have got rid of that when you had that giant clear out when I moved out".
Rachel laughed, but mainly because of Santana steering the conversation away from talking about her feelings.
"Britt wouldn't let me chuck it out", she explained, "She loves it".
"She would", Santana said affectionately. "Nutter".
"So are you excited about becoming Mrs Rutherford?" Rachel asked, her eyes wide in innocence.
For once, Santana didn't shy away or switch the topic.
"Fucking excited", she muttered shyly.
Rachel took a sip of her coffee, and there was a comfortable lull in conversation.
"How did you know that he was the one?" She asked quietly, "Out of all the guys you've…erm… known..?"
She took a deep breath, struggling to find the right words to explain as best she could.
"I just knew… I know that' not what people want to hear- they want there to be some sort of formula, they want there to be some set time scale, and a definitive list of feelings you're supposed to feel at every landmark… It doesn't work like that".
Rachel was silent, thoughtful.
Santana twisted her coffee mug in her hands.
"It's not this perfect story", Santana continued, staring slightly into the distance through the Manhatten apartment window. "It's not even like one of your angsty Broadway shows… There's no script, there's no chapters, there's no known order… But you know it's right, because it's beautiful and nothing else is in comparison".
Rachel nodded dumbly, blinking rapidly to clear her misted eyes.
She got up slowly, curling her arms around the friend she'd never thought she'd had, and closed her eyes to see all the things she always thought she would have, but didn't.
She was washing up later, drawing idle patterns in the bubbles, humming softly through a few possible wedding party songs that she could add to her already long list.
He was the last person she expected to come to the door.
The time gap was shorter (it had been just a week since their clandestine tryst in the changing room at the department store) but her body's reaction to seeing him again was just the same.
It was like seeing a pool of water after walking for days in the desert.
Her throat was as dry as the Sahara.
"Hi", she croaked, unable to move.
He was wearing a blue shirt, the sleeves hurriedly pushed up, and his nipple ring visible through the thin material.
His eyes were trained on her face, as though reading her.
"Turns out you know Mike Chang too", he started casually.
Rachel swallowed thickly.
"Yeah, I know Mike Chang- the dancer?"
He didn't answer, and his eyes bore into hers.
"So I figured I didn't get my reward", he said lowly.
"Your reward", she echoed carefully.
He took a step into the apartment, letting the door swing shut behind him.
She was rooted to the spot, her breathing quickening with the heat radiating from his body.
"Yes my reward", he said. "We had a bet".
She gulped as his eyes flicked to her lips.
She was wearing trackies and a baggy sweatshirt and no make-up, her hair was swept into a messy pin on the back of her head, and was still slightly damp from having just had a shower.
And he was looking at her like she'd just stepped off a playboy photo shoot.
"We did…" She said, confirming with a small nod.
He smirked, and a slither of heat targeted her core.
"You bet I couldn't make you cum in your panties", he reminded her, his voice a silken murmur as he closed the gap between them, centimetres separating their two bodies.
His thumb on her chin jerked her face up to his.
"You did", he growled.
"I did", she whispered.
Of course she did.
One of his hands curled round the back of her head to undo the clip that held her hair there, and he threw it sideways onto the table beside the carton of orange juice.
His fingers twisted in her hair.
Her heart beat against her ribcage.
She pulled at the waistband of his pants, her fingers tickling the warm skin beneath.
"I have to see you", he muttered, "You… jeeez… you".
She rocked forward onto the balls of her feet, pressing a chaste kiss to the corner of his mouth.
He could make her forget.
He could make her remember.
She stepped away from him then, backwards, and pulled her sweatshirt over her head in one swift movement, dropping it haphazardly on the floor beside her.
She knew he could see her bra through the white tank top she was wearing. He could see enough to want to know if she was wearing matching purple lacy underwear.
"Rach", he groaned softly.
"Come and get your reward Noah", she ordered gently. "Come and get me".
She took another step backwards but he was quicker, hurrying forwards and grabbing her hips firmly.
His fingers splayed, pushing her tank top aside to rest on bare skin.
Her heart beat against his chest.
His mouth ghosted a pathway up her neck before pressing against hers, and she had missed him.
She had missed the way he smelt, missed the way he tasted.
She just missed him.
He kissed her gently, unhurriedly, their lips melting together.
He kissed her like he meant it.
One hand left her side to curl round the back of her head, and she eagerly welcomed the tip of his tongue into her mouth.
Just when she was beginning to feel light headed from the lack of oxygen, he pulled back, dragging out her bottom lip between his teeth.
She gave a low moan, meeting his smouldering gaze.
"I'm glad you came", she said, managing sincerity over breathlessness.
"You first", he replied, with a devilish grin.
And he was kissing her again, more insistently, and a week was far too long a time without him.
But he was there now, and that was far more important.
He was the only one who could start an uncontrollable forest fire inside her, and coax that fire into every fibre of her being.
And the feeling was addictive.
It wasn't just a whimsical wanting she felt for him, it was an all-consuming, desperate need for his proximity.
His lips latched onto her neck, and she craned to the side, dropping a wet kiss onto his shoulder, willing him to have more access.
He had told himself that he didn't need to see her again.
He had told himself that it was just because he hadn't been in the game for a while, it was the fresh exhilaration of the first match after a long injury recovery period.
But he was lying.
It was just… her.
His hands pushed up underneath her tank top to play havoc with her tingling skin, pushing up the top and pulling it over her head in one swift movement.
Her body arched against him.
The way she said his name.
He was back to kissing her with fierce intensity, and somehow she managed to undo his shirt buttons with scrabbling fingers without his brain properly registering her movements.
Her hot mouth caught his sigh as her small warm hands run over his abdomen.
His muscles jumped under her fingertips.
He tightened his grip on her hips, and in between panted breaths started a scorching path of kisses across her collar bone, flicking his tongue out across the swell of her breasts, catching the lace of her bra.
Impatient, Rachel fought the fog of desire hijacking her mind and twisted her hands behind her to flick open her bra strap, letting it drop to the ground.
She was rewarded with his talented hands cupping and massaging her breasts.
Her body responded to his touch like no other, and at that moment, she was sure that she would be able to distinguish him out of a line-up completely blindfolded.
Something she definitely couldn't say of any of the others.
But this was him, and her body seemed to hum his name as the heat bubbled inside her.
His hands moved down to grip the top of her thighs, briefly nipping at both hard nipples with gentle teeth before setting onto his knees before her.
She uttered a pleasured sound halfway between a gasp and a guttural moan.
He pressed a soft kiss to her navel, tucking his thumbs into the waistband of her trackies and pulling them swiftly down her legs along with her underwear.
She stumbled slightly, her legs jelly at just the sensation of his hot, laboured breaths on the sensitive skin of the inside of her thighs.
He smoothly positioned her hands on his strong shoulders and shuddered slightly as her fingernails dug into the solid muscle, scattering kisses between her hipbones and his thumbs rubbing caressing circles on her thighs.
She received a sudden rush from his looking after her, even in this very small way.
It was an unusual feeling to extend trust to a man that wasn't either of her dads.
She was even beginning to doubt her ability to entirely look after herself.
He pushed a finger inside her and she lost the ability to think in straight lines.
He added another finger, and was much too soon removing them, producing a frustrated growl and a helpless bucking of hips from Rachel.
She forgave him the second his tongue pressed firmly and plunged deep inside her.
It became difficult to distinguish between his fingers and his mouth, and his name repeatedly stumbled out of her parted lips.
She clung to him as he taught her to experience heights of pleasure never reached before.
As she began to clench about him he rocked back onto his heels, rubbing her over the edge with his thumb and forefinger, her wild dark eyes meeting his burning with lust and heavy lidded.
She held onto him as the waves subsided.
He straightened up, pressing a tender, lingering kiss to her forehead.
"You're fucking beautiful", he murmured.
Her heart somersaulted in her chest.
And he was beautiful too.
His hand found hers hanging uselessly at her side, and entwined their fingers.
It was a while before he spoke, and he stopped her from closing the gap that he had opened between them with a sharp shake of his head.
"Do you want to go get something to eat? … there's this place… I think you'll like it".
She blinked at him in surprise.
He shuffled his feet.
"I figured I wanna get to know you… you know- cos it's you".
She smiled up at him and nuzzled her face against his chest, her smile stretching further across her face when he hugged her close.
And she felt like singing and dancing and phoning everyone she knew to tell them she was going on a date with Noah Puckerman.
Because it was him.
And she wasn't going to give him up.
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