Title: Different Kind of Talk
Word Count: 3,653
Summary: Sam's pretty sure Rachel's going to break up with him, but she has very different life-changing news.
Different Kind of Talk
"We need to talk."
Sam may be relatively new to the world of dating and girls, although he'd had three different girlfriends in a period of less than a year, but he knew for a fact that those four words were the worst thing a guy could hear. Admittedly, even though he and his two previous girlfriends hadn't worked out, neither of them had used that as an opener, but then one was cheating on him with her ex and the other was in love with her best girl friend. Rachel on the other hand, wasn't cheating as far as he knew and she was into dudes as far as he could tell. Then again, he thought Santana was too and that whole Brittany thing just kind of snuck up on him. It was for the better in the long run. He really didn't want to be her trouty-mouthed boyfriend, she kind of encouraged his insecurities. And it was probably better that he and Quinn called it off since she was obviously still really hung up on Finn. That could've hurt a lot worse. Plus, with Finn out of the way, it totally paved the way for him and Rachel. Insert fist-pump here. Yes!
And for the last five months, he and Rach had been really good. Like, after three months of dating, she not only did she let him touch her boobs, but like… she let him go all the way. And yeah, okay, he technically lost it to Santana back when he was really pissed at Quinn for cheating on him and willing to do whatever Santana said 'cause she was a little scary and really handsy, but that summer was epic. Because sleeping with Rachel was like tons better. It was like… a midnight sneak screening of Avatar with extra footage and director commentary by James Cameron himself, who's sitting like right next to you through the whole thing. E.P.I.C.
So he thought they were doing really good. It was a new school year, their last, and most of the footballers that picked on her were graduated, bonus! Football season was back in swing and he was giving Finn a good run for his money as starting quarterback since him and Puck started hanging out and he gave him a few pointers on his game. And with Rachel helping him with his voice, he was pretty sure he'd be getting more solos this year in glee. So life was pretty damn awesome for Sam Evans. And then his girlfriend said those four words and doom settled over him like a cancelled sci-fi marathon he'd been preparing for all week.
"O…kay…" His eyes darted away, like he kind of expected Finn Hudson to jump out from behind somewhere and tell him he did it again, he'd stolen another of his exes back from Sam. But the halls were pretty empty and it was just Rachel, twisting and turning her fingers, her big brown eyes red-rimmed and full of tears. "Rach… What's up?" He smiled, but it was shaky and he was feeling really damn worried.
"I…" Her voice went out and she cleared her throat. "I think…" She shook her head. "Wow. This is a lot harder than it appeared in various teen dramas I'd watched on television or viewed in romantic comedies…"
He blinked. "Uh…"
She sniffled, took his hand and turned them around so they were walking. "I think we should do this in the girl's washroom."
"Why?" Maybe the acoustics were better to hear herself breaking up with him…
She bit her lip and looked up at him side-long. "You're right. Perhaps it would be better if we did this at home. More privacy."
To better rip his heart out? He was thinking just about anywhere was going to royally suck.
She squeezed his hand tight in hers, her fingers gripping so hard he thought they might've turned purple. They didn't even stop at her locker so she could get her trolley bag, instead she practically jogged them toward her Prius. He was quiet, partly because he didn't really want to hurry the process and partly because he hoped she'd change her mind somewhere between the McKinley parking lot and her house. The drive was painfully quiet. She didn't even turn on the radio and sing along to the songs like she usually did, or rant about how the Top 40 were simply overindulged rappers or barely talented pop singers that didn't deserve the plastic their so-called music was imprinted on. She just stared ahead with those glassy eyes, chewing her lip so hard he worried it might bleed.
He and Rachel were an odd couple, he knew that. People didn't bother being polite, they just told him it was weird. Like even Puck, pretty much his only bro, told him it was kind of crazy that he was with Rachel. Mostly, Sam thought, because Puck had a weird sort of affection for her that everyone was pretty sure would eventually become something. Except he was still really into Lauren, who was kind of scary in Sam's opinion but really worked for Puck, so whatever. And for awhile, Quinn and Finn both kind of thought they were only doing it to get back at them, but he and Rachel knew it wasn't like that. Yeah, she loved Finn before, but she was past that. She loved Sam now. And he never doubted that, because she accepted all of him, like even the really geeky parts that went to comic-con's and collected action figures. He loved all her crazy diva Broadway stuff too; maybe he didn't always know who or what she was talking about, but she was really patient explaining it to him and he totally supported her becoming a star and like blowing New York away with her awesomeness. Which was why he was really damn confused.
'Cause she was happy, just yesterday. Like they'd spent all of Sunday watching movies and making out and she let him eat vegan chocolate sauce off her body, so they weren't having any problems that he knew of. He maybe told her Funny Girl wasn't really funny in the end and she didn't really like his opinion, but she spent an hour explaining to him the movie they'd just watched and since he didn't interrupt her they were on good terms again… which is why she was okay with him drizzling chocolate sauce all over her tummy and spending a hell of a long time licking all of it off. That was dedication! And she totally let him pick the next movie and didn't even complain when they watched Alien; in fact she agreed Sigourney Weaver was underrated actress… Which was why she was open to watching Ghostbusters one and two. It was kind of weird when she agreed to eat marshmallow fluff and didn't care if it was vegan or not, but she said she had a craving and didn't want to leave the movie. He didn't know how the Stay Puft Marshmallow dude made her hungry, he kind of creeped Sam out, but whatever. It was an awesome night.
When they finally made it to her house, every step was like one more in the death march. He was also pretty sure her overdramatic personality was rubbing off a little. He followed her up to her room, noticing her dads were gone; it sucked he wouldn't get a chance to say goodbye. And man, they were totally supposed to hang out next weekend! Hiram had tickets to a college football game! He frowned, even more disappointed. She started pacing her bedroom as soon as she stepped inside. He took a seat on her pink bed and stared at her yellow wall. He was going to miss those soundproof walls… and Rachel's voice screaming his name in his ear. He was pretty sure he was half-deaf on one side… He never told her that, because she might expect it to screw up his singing and then she might, like, stop and he really didn't want that to happen. Guess it didn't matter now.
He mostly just let her pace, 'cause he didn't want her to finish her sentence all, 'We're not working out,' or 'It's not you, it's me,' or 'I think I may be pregnant,' or—Wait, what? "Did… Did you just…?" He stared up at her.
She'd stopped pacing and was now wringing her hands as she stared at him. She nodded. "I can't be sure, but… I'm late."
Rachel wasn't late for anything. If anything, she was early. Early for school, early to turn in homework, early to their dates even though he was the one picking her up… "You're…"
She bit her lip and nodded, slower this time as her eyes fell. "But as I said, I can't be absolutely certain. Which is why…" She crossed the room and took a pregnancy test out of her purse. "I-I didn't want to do it alone and… And I thought you should at least know that there was a chance… But, I-I understand if perhaps you need some time to wrap your head around the situation or—"
"No, let's do it." He stood up and held his hand out. "It only takes a couple minutes, right?"
She took his hand, squeezing. "Yes, three to be exact… And whatever time it takes for me to, well, urinate on the stick…"
He swallowed tightly. "O-Okay…"
She looked from him to the bathroom door. "I'll only be a moment then."
She moved to walk past him to the bathroom but he pulled her back so she was standing in front of him. "I love you," he said, staring down at her seriously.
She smiled, mouth trembling. "You usually say it in Na'vi."
"I know… And I always mean it. I just…" He shifted his feet. "This is big and it's not a joke. So I just wanted you to know that I'm taking it seriously…" He blew out a tight laugh. "I thought you were breaking up with me."
Her brows furrowed. "Why would you think that?" She frowned. "I have no intentions of breaking up with you, Sam. Whatever gave to the impression that I would even consider—?"
"We need to talk…" He used the finger-quotes she was so fond of. "That's like girl-talk for 'I'm dumping you and there's nothing you can do or say to stop me.'" He shrugged, half-smiling. "I'm not sure if this is better or worse."
Her eyes filled again and she ducked her head. "I'm so sorry…" She sniffled. "I wasn't prepared for this and I know you weren't either. Sam… If this test is positive, do you realize how monumental that is? How life-changing?" Her shoulders started shaking and she drew in a shaky breath until it broke on a cracked sob.
His hands shook as he panicked. "Don't-Don't cry, Rach! You know your tears are like my kryptonite!"
She laughed, hiccupping. "I h-hope diapers aren't your kryptonite because you may be changing a lot of them in the near future!"
His nose wrinkled. "If I say they are, can I get somebody else to do that?"
She scoffed, rolling her eyes at him. "Sam!"
He chuckled. "Sorry…" He shrugged. "Got you to stop crying."
She glared, wiping at her cheeks. But just as swiftly as she cleared them, new tears appeared. "What about New York? Broadway?" She shook her head. "What about my dreams?"
He reached for her, rubbing her shoulders. "We can still go… You can still blow them away with your voice!"
"H-How?" she wondered, and for the first time in their relationship she really looked like she didn't know, like she needed him to reassure her. And that scared the hell out of him.
"I can stay home… I-I can watch the baby," he offered, nodding, an idea forming. "I totally have the abs of a trophy husband!"
She chuckled but shook her head. "And your graphic novel? You aspired to draw your own, Sam. You won't have time with a toddler running around!"
"So I'll wait until they're a little older…" He smiled reassuringly, feeling a little more confident. "I can put my dream on hold a little while."
"How are we going to support a child?" She swallowed, her rational mind kicking into gear. "Where will we live?"
"I'll get a job. I'll get two jobs!" He licked his lips. "And we'll live wherever you want. If you want to stay here and your dads let us, then we will. If not, I'll talk to my mom and we can stay with her until graduation. And after that… We move to New York, we get a cheap apartment, you work Broadway and I-I watch the baby or I get a job that has daycare, I don't- I don't know. But we'll work it out."
She nodded, her hands lifting to wipe at her face. "And adoption?" she whispered, her eyes raising to his. "Would you be opposed to the idea?"
His jaw ticked, brows falling heavy over his eyes. "I don't know…" He looked at her flat stomach and back up at her. "I've never really thought about having to give up a baby… Especially not our baby…"
"So I assume abortion is off the table…" Her eyes were wide as they stared at him searchingly.
He really didn't know what she wanted him to say right then. "I-I don't—Is that what you want? I…" He rubbed the back of his neck. Could he be okay with that? "I don't… I don't think I could…"
She nodded. "I've always been pro-choice, but now that I'm standing here… I think I'm pro-life for myself, does that make any sense?" She shook her head. "I believe that women have the right to choose what they do or don't want to do with their bodies… But I could have a baby in me right now… I could have a mini-Sam growing inside me. It-It could grow to have your eyes or your hair o-or your lips…" She gathered in a gulping breath and pressed a hand to her heart. "I would always wonder and I just can't—"
He nodded, wrapping his arms around her. "It's okay. Rachel, it's okay… I-We-Whatever you want to do, I'm gonna be here, okay?"
She nodded, her arm wrapping around him as she cried against his shoulder. "I'm scared, Sam…"
He buried his face into her hair. Me too, he thought. But right then, he needed to be the strong one. Usually, it was Rachel. She was the confident one, the one who always had her chin up, the one who could face down anything. "We need to know…" He kissed her neck, her ear, her cheek. "We need to know before we make all these choices, okay?"
She nodded, licking her lips and trying to slow down her breathing. "Okay."
He wiped her face, thumbs stroking her cheeks, and tucked her hair behind her ears. He kissed her forehead and then turned her around, nudging her toward the bathroom. "I'll be right here."
She looked at him once over her shoulder and then stepped into the bathroom, closing the door behind her. It was a few seconds before she said, "Sam?"
His fisted hands were stuck in his jeans pockets. "Yeah?"
"Will you get me a bottle of water from downstairs?"
"Yeah, sure…" He turned and hurried to the kitchen, taking the stairs two at a time. He grabbed two bottles out because he knew she'd guzzle the first and she always drank water when she was upset. When he closed the fridge door, he just stared a second. Plastered all over, there were pictures of Rachel and her dads when she was little, when her nose looked too big for her face and her smile was just as wide. Back when she wore braids and when her clothes were more suited to her age and when she was just a little baby with chubby cheeks and those big brown eyes. And he wondered if one day he was going to have a fridge like this, covered with pictures of his and Rachel's baby. Because yeah, he thought about it sometimes. Like, way into the future, after his comic book went big and her career in Broadway was in full swing. Then they'd have little Sam's and Rachel's running around with his nose and her mouth and their combined awesome singing voices. And he really liked what that life looked like.
When he went back upstairs, she was sitting on her bed, her hands clasped in her lap and the test on the bedside table. "It'll be another minute and forty seconds," she told him.
He nodded, sitting down next to her and handing her one of the bottles. Like he expected, she finished the first one without stopping to breathe and took smalls sips from the other one. She sat panting, staring at floor with wide eyes. "Could we raise him or her Jewish?" she hoped.
He half-smiled. "As long as I can teach them Na'vi."
She half-rolled her eyes. "English first, please."
He chuckled, running his hand through his hair and tugging on the ends. "Whose eyes do you think he or she'll have?"
"Mine," she answered simply. "Brown is a dominant color and so it will likely overshadow the green genes." She looked up at him. "Although, if any child can outmaneuver genetics, I'm sure it will be ours." She smiled gently. "I hope they have your eyes... They're very beautiful."
He slid an arm around her and hugged her to his side, resting his chin against her head as it leaned into his shoulder. "Whose lips or feet or hands?" Not waiting for her to answer, he said, "I hope they have your mouth; trouty-lips suck…" He grinned at her chuckle. "And you have really tiny feet, so if it's a girl, then yours… But small feet on a dude isn't cool." He took up her hand and played with her fingers. "You have small hands too…" He half-smiled. "You're so tiny."
"Petite," she scoffed. "And I may just become the size of a small whale if this test turns out positive." She wrinkled her nose. "My dancer's body… What a loss." He wiggled his fingers against her neck where she was ticklish until she squirmed and slapped his thigh. "Stop that!"
"I'll still like your body… Small whale or giant sturmbeest."
He laughed. "Sorry."
She clucked her tongue. "You are not!"
He bit his lip. "Not really."
She sighed dramatically and glared up at him. "You're ridiculous."
He shrugged. "You think they'll have dyslexia?" His brows furrowed. "I hope not."
"I'm not sure that's genetic…"
He smiled. "Maybe he'll be smart like you."
"You're smart," she argued, her expression fierce.
He kissed her to avoid the argument.
"We should play music while he's still in your stomach…" His expression lit up. "He could come out dancing!"
She giggled into her hand, rolling her eyes when he wiggled next to her to imitate it.
"I'm kind of excited," he admitted, looking down at her sheepishly. "I mean… I know the timing's crap and it's gonna be really hard, but… There's nobody else I'd wanna have a baby with."
Her expression softened and she reached out to tug on one of his hoodie's drawstrings. "I know."
"Whatever you want to do, okay?" He leaned down and pressed his forehead to hers. "I'm with you all the way."
She nodded, lifting her chin and kissing him. Their lips met and stayed still, just warm and smooth and unmoving for a moment as she slid her arms around his neck and sighed. Finally, she rested her cheek against his and whispered, "It's time."
He squeezed her tighter and nodded. When he let go, she turned and reached, her hand shaking. She grabbed the test and brought it back in her fist, biting her lip as she looked up at him. "Will you look? I-I can't."
Teeth clenched, he slipped it out of her hand and turned it over in his palm. In that moment, he didn't know what he wanted it to say. Because he knew it was going to be insanely hard, but some part of him really wanted that life and family with her and waiting sucked. But he also knew that they weren't ready, that having a baby now could put their lives on hold, might even come between them. They were young and they had their lives planned out and she'd worked so hard…
Swallowing tightly, he looked down. It was one second, two, three, before it registered.
He blew out a long sigh, relief and a little disappointment rushing through him. "It's negative, Rach…"
She opened her eyes and looked down, staring a long second before she nodded, blinking rapidly. And just like that she was crying again. "I don't—I don't know why I'm sad and happy at the same time!" she sobbed, her shoulders shaking. She turned and wrapped her arms around him, pressing her face into his neck. "I w-want to have your children, Sam… One day, I do."
He nodded, stroking her hair and holding her tight. He smiled crookedly. "When we're twenty-five, right?"
She laughed a little. "Yes."
He remembered the pictures on the fridge, the idea he built up in his mind of them and their baby, and he nodded. "I can wait."
And he did. Nine years later, well known graphic novelist Sam Evans and his wildly acclaimed Broadway star of a wife welcomed a baby boy into the world at the right time and right place and when they were ready. The first thing he said to his little boy, who wiggled like he was dancing, was, "You were worth the wait, buddy."
Sturmbeest: fictional animal from Avatar; a large six-legged herd animal that the Na'vi hunt for food. A male has a single sharp horn sticking out of the forehead; females do not.
Author's Note: For those of you who might be wondering, I've written another Puck/Rachel oneshot called "Second Chances," but it's NC-17 so it can only be found on my LiveJournal. Go to my profile for a link!