Title: Someone Like You
Pairing: Quinn/Rachel, mentions of past Rachel/Finn
Summary: When one day Finn Hudson turns up to Rachel and Quinn's idyllic married life to get her back, who'll back down? Set in the future.
Spoilers: I don't actually refer to anything particular spoilerific or canon, but you might as well be caught up on the latest episodes, whatever they are.
Notes: Title from Adele's song. I know, I know, I really need to stop taking titles from songs. Bite me. Also, thanks to Kari for the beta-ing, as usual. You go, girl.
Finn nervously wiped his hands on his new jeans and straightened the black tie and shirt he was wearing before carefully pressing the button marked 'Rachel Berry'. A few seconds later, the intercom crackled and he heard her voice, slightly distorted, ask, "Hello?"
"Hey, Rachel, it's me, Finn. Um… I'm sorry about dropping by so suddenly but-"
"Hello, Finn! It's no trouble at all; it'll be lovely to catch up. Come in!" The automatic doors opened and he walked into the apartment, marveling at how new the place looked. He wondered if this was a good idea, but then shook his head. He'd come here to do one thing, and come what may, he was going to try to get Rachel Berry back. If she'd have him.
It had been five years since they'd graduated, and 6 since their awful breakup, but he still loved her in a lot of ways, and he knew that he really wanted her back in his life, preferably with him.
As Finn waited for the elevator to reach him, he quickly checked his reflection in the metal and brushed his hair back. It had grown longer since his high school days, but he quite liked it. He thought it made him look a little less dorky, and maybe just a little more desirable. Or maybe that was hope talking.
He pressed the button to go up to the eighth floor and tapped his feet against the floor of the elevator as it slowly carried him up. When the door opened, he saw Rachel Berry leaning casually against a wall directly opposite the elevator, and when he stepped out and she noticed him, her face split into a wide grin.
"Finn! It's been years," she reached around his broad shoulders into an almost familiar hug. Finn grinned and hugged back. He gently pulled away and held her by the shoulders to admire her. She'd grown slightly, and her hair looked darker, and her eyes brighter. She was wearing jeans and a loose off-the-shoulder green shirt that made her look fantastic.
Smiling, he let her lead him to her door. "I've been hearing your name on tv and in the papers a lot. Everyone back home's really proud of you, Rach. How've you been?"
"It's been lovely here, Finn. And somehow, I've taken to married life the way Barbra Streisand takes to singing. Who knew?"
"Married life?" Finn echoed, shocked, but then the door swung open and there stood Quinn Fabray, tall and imposing in all her glory. She looked at him sternly, her hair almost seeming to crackle with energy, then she raised her right hand. She was holding a spatula.
Reaching out with her left hand to shake his hand, Quinn broke into a tiny smile and said, "Finn, l suppose you're joining us for dinner?"
Finn, grasping her hand, couldn't reply, Rachel cut across and, while bustling Finn into the living room, waved Quinn away. "Of course he's staying for dinner, baby; he's only just gotten here! Finn, you eat vegetarian lasagna, don't you?" She was already leading him away, and Quinn was already re-entering the kitchen.
Finn was flabbergasted. When Quinn had stuck her left hand out, he was pretty sure he saw a wedding band. And when he shook her hand, he was pretty sure she was still wearing the wedding band. No way. No, no, no way. Quinn had probably just befriended Rachel and was over to cook for her right? As a friend? The word 'baby' rang in his ears. No, no, no, this was impossible.
Rachel gestured for him to sit down on one of their plush, matching sofas, and he did, abruptly conscious of his large feet, and of how he had quite possibly accidentally stepped in some mud before he had come in.
"Would you like a drink? I'll get you some coffee? Tea? Beer, maybe? We have Corona, I think."
"Nah, it's okay,' Finn croaked, regaining the use of his voice, 'I know you don't drink beer."
"That's quite alright. I'll be back. Feel free to browse through our photographs," Rachel gestured at the number of photo albums scattered systematically across the coffee table.
Finn picked one of the silver-gilded albums up in shock. He paged through it slowly; it looked like Rachel's college years. Now and then he'd see a photo of Rachel and Quinn together at a coffee shop, or an amusement park, or in front of a theatre. As the album progressed, they went from sitting across a table to standing next to each other to being completely intertwined.
There was a photo of Rachel on the sofa he was sitting on right now, her face framed beautifully in the evening light, and she was looking into the camera with so much emotion that he nearly gasped. He looked around quickly and slipped the photo out of its pocket. Written on the back with a cursive script he thought he recognized was 'Rach, I love you too. I'm sorry about what I said. You're beautiful, and together we're perfect. Q'
No way. No frickin' way in hell. Screw this. What the hell did Quinn do to be able to twist Rachel's mind to-
"I see you've discovered my favourite photo," Rachel tapped Finn lightly on the shoulder. He jumped, and the photo fell to the ground. He glanced up at Rachel guiltily, but she was smirking. She sat down and picked the photo up, cradling it in her hands like it was something precious. Her face as she stared down at the photo was… stunning. He'd never seen her look more beautiful. He swallowed. "So uh, you and Quinn Fabray…?"
"Quinn Berry-Fabray now," Rachel said lightly, as she carefully slipped the picture back in its place before putting the album back on the table. "We had a very small ceremony just a few months ago. Kurt and Santana and Brittany, who were in New York at the time, were invited, and so were my dads and a couple other people. Quinn didn't want a lot of publicity around it because at the time I was making a movie with this hunky new man-star, and she was afraid that if it got out that I was married to a woman the movie wouldn't do quite as well. That was really great of her, even though it wasn't quite necessary. But after the movie came out two months ago we never bothered announcing it to the press either, so that's that. They'll find out one day. What a field day that's going to be. I'm sorry I didn't tell the rest of you, but I just didn't want the news to get out. Forgive me?" Rachel smiled and put her hand on his, squeezing it.
He nodded weakly. "But how…?"
Right at that moment, Quinn walked into the living room, her spatula put away, and in place of it was a beer and a mug of something hot. She put the beer in front of Finn and walked over to Rachel, putting the mug down. "Herbal tea. I know you hate beer," she said, snuggling into her wife comfortably.
Rachel took her right hand and kissed her wrist right under a small tattoo of a gold star. "You're sweet,' she beamed, 'no wonder I married you."
Quinn smiled back and brushed a strand of Rachel's hair back as though to reciprocate the affection, but Finn could see the possessive light appear in the blonde's eyes, and when she turned her eyes upon him, she made sure he knew that she knew it too.
Finn tightened his jaw. She hadn't changed one bit. He raised the cold drink to his lips and almost grimaced at the taste. Maybe he was being over dramatic, but it tasted like bittersweet defeat.
Rachel hadn't let go of Quinn's hand, but had allowed it to curl around her waist as they both faced Finn.
"So how has it been in dear old Lima? Have you met anyone special yet?" The funny thing was how Rachel actually sounded interested.
Awkwardly, Finn shrugged. "I thought I did, but then she left Lima. And since then there have been a couple, but none lasted, so I thought I'd take a short holiday to come clear my head and… visit some old friends." And get my old girlfriend back, he thought in his head.
Quinn's arm tightened around Rachel, and she pulled the brunette back to rest closer against her, but Rachel seemed not to notice Finn's extremely unsubtle prod. "That's too bad, Finn, but hey, who knows, maybe you'll meet someone here in New York while you're on break. Where are you staying?" She even sounded sympathetic.
Finn was crushed. It had been foolish to hope she would invite him to stay the night, but he'd still hoped, so he'd only checked into a small motel pretty far from where they were living. It had a bed and a bathroom, which was all he'd needed in order to freshen up before coming to see Rachel. At least he'd left his duffel bag back there, though.
"I've got a place to stay. It's pretty far though, and anyway I'm going back home soon. My leave's only until the end of the week," he flushed.
"What do you do now, Finn?" Quinn asked, speaking to him for the first time since he'd entered.
He flushed further. "I'm uh, helping Burt out. He's getting old, and since the heart attack he hasn't been able to do as much work, so I'm just learning the trade and I guess eventually I'll take over. He's been great about it."
Rachel nodded. "You've always been good with fixing things. I remember when you fixed my wheelchair back in glee. Those were great times. How is Glee doing now? Is Mr. Schuester trying to ruin any other future-superstar's career?"
"Rach, babe, he never tried to ruin your career. He was just a bad teacher," Quinn teased, lightly poking Rachel in the nose. The brunette rolled her eyes. "Whatever," she muttered. Quinn grinned.
Finn watched all this with his mouth almost falling open at how… natural they seemed. And he knew that he wasn't the most perspective person, (or was it perceptive?), but he was almost certain that they had this easy banter most of the time.
He cleared his throat, and Rachel turned her attention back on him. "Yeah, speaking of glee club… Uh, I'm sorry about… how I broke up with you back then." He winced at the memory, and saw the displeased look Rachel had as well.
"Yes well, singing 'I Gotta Go My Own Way', from 'High School Musical', Finn, really?, and sans a female part?, to me in front of the entire glee club was fairly embarrassing, but at least I got a good song out of that.
Behind her, Quinn chuckled at the memory of Rachel belting out her new original song entitled 'My Moronic Boyfriend and How He Broke Up With Me' that she informed the glee club was about her moronic boyfriend and how he'd broken up with her. She'd personally thought it was an instant hit, but Mr. Schuester had frowned at Rachel and told her that it was immature to insult someone else's intelligence in front of the rest of the glee club.
"I do hope you've grown up since that immature stunt you've pulled, Finn Hudson,' Rachel mock scolded him, 'otherwise I'm pretty sure I know how the other girls haven't lasted."
At the time, Quinn had already been annoyed at Mr. Schuester for complimenting Puck on his 'great' rapping of 'I Like Big Butts', directed at Lauren. She'd stood up and sent it his way. "Mr. Schuester, I hardly think her song was immature. I personally think breaking up with someone via an extremely cheesy song sung very badly is the really immature act. And Puck's song was completely inappropriate. So suck it." And then she'd stormed out, leaving a completely shocked Mr. Schuester behind her.
Later, Rachel had caught up with Quinn and, after thanking her, complimented her on her storm out. Their tentative friendship had started and grown from there.
"Who knew our breakup and subsequent dramatic actions would've been the catalyst for my relationship with Quinn?" Rachel laughed at the irony.
She was the only one, so Quinn pressed a quick kiss to her bare shoulder and said, "Rach, could you maybe check on the lasagna for a sec? Maybe let Finn and I catch up?"
Rachel looked surprised, and rightly so, because Quinn seldom showed any emotion towards conversations they'd had about Finn that wasn't boredom or annoyance. Still, she smiled and stood up. Maybe her wife and ex-boyfriend could be a little less antagonistic towards each other. It was nice to be able to reminisce with someone else about the old days. Quinn seldom wanted to talk about parts of her past that involved Finn, and most of the time Rachel couldn't blame her.
She glanced back at the two of them, and noticed that Quinn had moved closer to Finn. She frowned slightly, then shook her head and went into the kitchen.
Quinn calmly picked up one of the photo albums. It was one of the most nondescript ones on the coffee table, hardly different or special in any way from looking at the cover. "This is our wedding album." She flipped it open. The first picture that greeted them was of Quinn and Rachel at the altar, both of them clad in white wedding dresses. Rachel's was lacy and short; Quinn's long and elegant. "This was us, getting married."
She flipped past two pages. "This is us at the small reception we had." Rachel's dads stood at either side of Rachel, looks of pride and love on their faces. Rachel was beaming at the camera. "I took that photo."
She turned the page. "That's us having our first dance together." Rachel was staring up into Quinn's face as though she was starving for a glimpse of it. Quinn looked just about the same. "That's the wedding cake." 5 tiered and tall, each layer shaped like a star. It was frosted with golden icing. "It cost almost three times the price for them to alter it to that shape and colour, but Rachel loved it. She didn't know about it. I went back in secret to get them to change it."
The next page. Rachel, Quinn, Santana, Brittany and Kurt standing together and beaming into the camera. Rachel's hands were clasped firmly in Quinn's, and Santana and Brittany were, as usual, interlocked. Kurt looked pleased and smart in his fitted black suit. It looked like one of the designs he'd once shown to Finn, Burt and Carol at the dinner table.
She flipped to the second last page. Quinn's parents stood behind Quinn. Her father looked stern and her mother was beaming, but looked close to tears. Quinn herself looked to be holding up fine. "I didn't know they were going to come," she said quietly. "Rachel didn't even tell me she invited them just in case they declined the invitation.
She paused before turning to the last page. "This is personal," she murmured. Still not looking at Finn, she slowly turned the page. It was a close up photo of the kiss between her and Rachel when they sealed their vows. There were tears on both their eyes and cheeks, and their mascara was smudged, but it was Quinn's favourite photo in the entire world. The pictures she took of amazing landscapes that blew the mind were nothing compared to this photo of her and Rachel.
Quinn left the album on her lap for a few seconds, then she shut it and picked up another photo album. "We married after she finished her movie. Our honeymoon lasted one month, and we spent it in London and Paris. We-"
"Stop. Enough. Just stop," Finn said softly from his seat. "I get it."
"Do you?" Quinn asked, finally looking up to stare at Finn in the eyes.
"I do,' he replied, though he could feel his chest constricting. He did understand. He understood that he might've loved Rachel once, might love her still, but compared with the love Quinn had for her it was nothing. "But I had to try."
"Of course you did. She's worth it. I don't deserve her. But neither do you," Quinn added firmly.
And then Finn did what he thought was the hardest, most grown-up thing he'd even done. "No. You deserve her. And she deserves you. You… make each other happy. I tried, but I couldn't do that." He shrugged.
Quinn gave him a small, genuine smile then. It almost looked appreciative. "Thank you."
"Quinn, Finn, the lasagna's ready," Rachel called from the kitchen. They heard the rattling of utensils and plates and they both stood up. Quinn glanced at Finn, whose eyes were boring into their shag carpet as though the answer to all the mysteries of the world were sewn into it. He nodded to himself.
"Smells great, Rach," Quinn sniffed, as though it had been Rachel who'd made it, even though basically all Rachel had done was take it out of the oven. Rachel smirked like she knew what Quinn was trying to do and poked her in the stomach.
"Suck up," she teased. Turning to Finn, she said, "Finn, have a seat. We've got plenty, even if you still eat as much as I remember."
But Finn shook his head. "I'm really sorry, Rachel, but something's come up. I have to go back to Lima."
"Really? That's terrible. Is Burt okay? Is your mom okay? Don't worry about it; you should go," she exclaimed in quick succession.
"Yeah. Thanks for everything. It was great seeing you though, Rach. Some other time, yeah?" He reached down to hug her, but made sure to let go pretty quickly.
"Definitely. We'll come visit. Promise. Right, Quinn?" She looked back at her wife, who nodded. "Definitely," she echoed, reaching up to give Finn a quick hug as well.
"Good luck in everything, Rachel. You're the best, but don't forget all of us back home, okay?" He smiled as he walked out.
Finn Hudson had once been a very immature teenager. He'd been, overall, a pretty lousy boyfriend. But he was over that, he thought as he walked out of the apartment and hailed a cab. Just maybe.