New Directions was terrible. It would never be news. One could argue that they were still just a glee club that insulted show choirs everywhere, and Jesse St. James definitely knew this better than anyone. But the thing was they were fine with it.
Maybe Mr. Schue was right. Maybe several years from now when they were looking back on high school, they wouldn't immediately remember everyone's names. But they would remember glee. As Rachel still maintained and reminded, they would remember being a part of something special. For three years they had experienced love and heartbreak. They went through the mundane and life-altering. Some had made friends for the first time while others, for a brief period at least, were given a surrogate parent. Despite the arguments and drama and all-around immaturity they still sometimes displayed, the three years spent together had changed all of them. They had shaped each other, and they wouldn't be forgetting that any time soon.
While there were promises to keep in touch and remain friends, the reality was in a few short months they'd be separated and some would be losing each other for good. So, at Brittany's request, they were still going to spend a substantial amount of time together all at once. Throughout the summer, that's what those who remained would do. This, of course, was unlike their past two summers. Usually they all stuck to their small cliques within the group. They did this to keep from causing problems as, let's face it, there were just some people who would never entirely get along. They liked to uphold the outlook of the less fights the better. But they were going to make an exception this year and actually put the effort in.
For the most part, they committed to the plan; at least for a few weeks. One weekend they all drove down to the Columbus Zoo like Brittany had wanted. They constantly went to the movies when they could all afford it. They joined a community pool and all agreed that the lifeguard was an ass and should drown for the irony. Jesse, Finn, and Kurt somehow worked together on "keeping the music alive" by helping Rachel to set up glee days in her basement. It was usually on Saturday nights and most seemed to enjoy still having a musical outlet to go for. They didn't even mind Jesse being around as much now that he wasn't their instructor. It all went well for a while at least.
As June wore on, it became less of a group, and more and more, they once again split up into those little cliques. It was just easier for say Kurt to get along with Mercedes than it was for Santana. Sam still occasionally had problems with Finn's existence. Karofsky still didn't always enjoy Blaine's company. Rachel still had the innate ability to clash with everyone from time to time. And Jesse was still Jesse. It didn't take long for the tension to settle in, and unlike their glee rehearsals in school, they were spending more than a couple hours together a day. It just made sense to start running around with their selective in-group friendships. Everyone was happier for it. Besides, as always, there were some relationships to be focused on anyway.
The first actual breakup to occur was Puck and Lauren's. Lauren was also the first to leave. She missed out on most of glee's group activities since almost as soon as summer began, she was gone. To get ahead and prove herself worthy of her full ride, she signed up for summer courses at Oklahoma City University. Puck spent his own time after the breakup deciding on whether he wanted to apply late to Rhodes Community College or OSU at Lima because both school were awesome and allowed things like that. On the one hand, he could go to Rhodes for two years and learn how to be a real business dude and expand his pool cleaning services. On the other hand, he could go to school with his friends and like earn a different degree or whatever. Ultimately, he decided on the latter. Now all he needed to do was apply and register late and try and explain that whole juvie thing.
Brittany and Santana planned on doing something similar. Brittany also planned on registering late to OSU at Lima with everyone else. She just needed to get her diploma first. As for Santana, well, she was considerably less enthused. She still wasn't set on really being in Lima at all, but she and Brittany had both talked like actual adults about their future plans. Brittany understood why Santana didn't want to stay, and while she didn't care either way, neither wanted the other to be unhappy. So it was decided that once Santana got back from her summer road trip, they'd go to orientation with the group and then to school for one year at home while trying really hard in their classes so they could transfer somewhere cooler. Santana was mostly fine with making this compromise.
Originally, Santana wanted to get the hell in her car and go ASAP. But there were some problems. The main one being that she and Karofsky first had to put together some money for their soon-to-be killer trip. She had received a sizable graduation gift from her parents and then told them her plans hoping for another one or at least some type of loan. Her father made her a deal that whatever money she would earn at some lame summer job, he'd match it cent for cent. The next day Santana and Dave were manipulating their way into jobs at Breadstix. They could scam enough people out of tips, and Santana liked the idea of working somewhere that gave her free meals throughout the day. Granted, the restaurant didn't know they were giving her free meals, but whatevs. Job perk.
Once they did actually earn enough money, it all worked out perfectly in terms of timing. By the time they collected what they needed, it was just before Brittany had to start attending school again. So Santana wasn't as depressed leaving then as she would've been weeks earlier. However, once they were out of Lima's district lines, the small depression she did have lessened greatly which Karofsky was thankful for. When Santana originally propositioned him with her idea, he was nervous. They were friends obviously, but still. Two months in a car together wouldn't be a cake walk. But the more he thought about it, the more excited he was to leave home for a while. He'd get away from their former asshole classmates. He'd get away from the glee club which, look, he liked some of them, but there were others he just couldn't be around for too long without wanting to punch something. Anyway, as of now, Santana's road trip seemed like the best idea in the history of ever.
All throughout the six weeks of summer school and after, Brittany talked to Santana daily, and as promised, she was sent postcards from every new location. Brittany chose to make a collage on her bedroom wall with them. Santana's last card was sent from somewhere outside of Denver. Artie was doing a good job of making sure Brittany wasn't distracted by any of this, though. He understood that Santana was his ex's favorite person, but he made a promise with some of the other gleeks to help her pass all of her classes. Despite summer school being nowhere near as taxing as actual school (it was actually a joke), it still took some dedication for Brittany to complete it. And once she did officially make up all of her credits, she went to the office to pick up her diploma. Since they all made the deal, Brittany's family and the glee club members that were left threw her a backyard graduation ceremony, pulling out all the stops. Though she missed her girlfriend on this special day, she still couldn't be happier.
Kurt sympathized. Brittany and Santana weren't the only ones working on a long distance relationship at that point. Shortly into their summer break, Blaine's band mates had all been found. Classical Conditioning (They wanted to be called Pavlov's Dogs, but sadly there was already a band of that name.) was set to start recording their "pop-ish" album. Blaine was of course excited about everything, and so far he was getting along splendidly with his fellow band members. Still, he was driving up to Cleveland every week, and once they completed the record, Blaine probably wasn't going to be home at all. It was harder than Kurt initially thought it would be and it happened sooner than they were prepared for, but that was why they ultimately began spending every possible moment they had together. They didn't want to lose any time at all.
The rest of coupleville was at least faring a little better. Mercedes and Sam were becoming accustomed to Sam working fulltime as was Sam's family. Weeks before summer when this had first come into conversation, Kurt took the liberty of talking to his dad about possibly giving Sam a job at his tire shop due to his family's financial situation. Burt was hesitant as he had no reason to hire the kid other than he was a friend of Kurt's which truthfully didn't do anything for a résumé. But he did give Sam a small apprenticeship at the start of summer to see if it would work out before hiring him fulltime. It ended up working out rather nicely, and Kurt at least had someone enjoyable to talk to when Blaine was away. Kurt was also happy over the fact that his friendship with Mercedes was once again strengthening as a result.
Mike and Tina's summer was spent mostly in peace as they waited until they actually had to do something other than be together. That came in July when they drove down to Ohio State for their scheduled freshman orientation date. The rest of their time was spent with their friends. They helped Artie tutor Brittany when it was needed. They double dated with Sam and Mercedes on picnics. It was a complete Rockwell type summer for the couple. This is perhaps why they were winning Artie's second career betting pool on which couple would stay together the longest. Unlike the last, this one would not be rigged. It still didn't mean any of his friends were happy about the lack of faith they had in each other's relationships.
Rachel and Quinn's summer went a little differently. For one, the majority of it was spent in private. They lived mostly in their own little bubble, safely progressing their relationship along. They still had things to learn about each other, particularly as girlfriends. Quinn still questioned past feelings at times while Rachel tried to do the same, though frankly she'd rather not. Doing so had the potential to lead to several what if scenarios on both their parts, and Rachel simply didn't see the benefit. She'd rather they try and stay in the present where nothing was painful, regrettable, or confusing. The present was a happy, promising place worth exploring and maybe sneaking around in. After all, it was discovered to be a major benefit of having a (semi) secret relationship.
In the beginning of summer when all of the gleeks were still trying to regularly hang out with each other, Rachel and Quinn mostly spent those outings ducking away. It almost became like a game. At the zoo, Rachel had a serious problem with animals being held in captivity on account of how wrong it obviously was. She couldn't bear the sight and was extremely thankful when Quinn offered to take her away from the beautiful, caged beasts. While they both enjoyed the pool, sometimes Quinn greatly worried about getting a sunburn on her fair skin. It only made sense that she left early, and since Rachel didn't find if fair that Quinn couldn't stay, she always left with her friend. (Neither cared that Kurt actually had this problem.) The movies they happened to choose to go and see turned out to be incredibly bad and the atrocious performances affected Rachel profoundly. Therefore, they just had to leave the theater. And in Rachel's house, well there was always something upstairs that wasn't working properly and needed their attention in some way.
Once the group's collective summer plans began to wane was when the girls' bubble really began to take shape. They were always alone...or at least they tried to be. Jesse and Kurt typically decided to constantly run interference. They honestly weren't doing it on purpose. They just happened to want to spend time with their friends. Okay, fine. Maybe there were times when they both divided Rachel and Quinn or played third wheel on purpose, but it was only because it was amusing. The constant secret smiles and sneaking off had irritated both boys (and Santana while she was still around) so sure, maybe they liked to be the spoiler, but that's what friends do. They tease and annoy each other to no end. Besides, the couple should just think of it as a preview to next year anyway. Preparation, as Jesse instructed all year, was important.
Rachel and Quinn were obviously not thrilled about this, but they (Rachel) tried to understand. And they did for the most part. It wasn't like they only wanted to see each other. They just didn't want to see anyone else; at least on their private time. Rachel still loved spending time with Kurt. And the two loved to gossip about their significant others. It was just their nature. Rachel would gush and blush about Quinn while Kurt would whine and complain about the distance between himself and Blaine. It was nice, and it gave Rachel an ample amount of time to start on her plan. By the end of this summer, Kurt and Jesse would be friends. They didn't always have to see eye to eye, but they would get along. She spent plenty of occasions working on keeping them around each other and bringing up conversation topics that they'd both enjoy talking about. It hadn't exactly worked, but they were mildly better.
Jesse had just been focused on other things. More important things. Much like last summer, Jesse was pushing Quinn into their version of "therapy." Summer gave them the perfect opportunity to make real progress as neither had much else to do. Despite Quinn's thoughts, he wasn't dumb. Just because Quinn "got the girl" didn't mean he was going to forget just how many issues he still had to help her work through. That would've cost him his license. Yes, she was actually happy now…most of the time which made everything considerably easier for the both of them, but Quinn was still a Quinn. She had come a far way since last year, but she wasn't "fixed" yet. He had to prepare her for actually moving away. It was what she wanted, sure. And she had known she was leaving for months now. But the day in which they actually left would provide some setbacks if he didn't do something, he was sure of it. So that became his main Quinn-task.
They researched everything they could about their future school. Paid close mind to the deadline for their class registration. They prepared for their own freshman orientation, and when they weren't looking at the college, they were looking at apartments online. Lots and lots of apartments. Their parents usually joined in the fun to help them and keep them from using their unfortunate naivety to make any decisions. Jesse didn't understand why. It wasn't like Judy or his mom and dad have ever lived in Manhattan, but Quinn felt it to be the safer choice. He suspects it was more to just stay on her mother's good side and create a deeper bond as she had tried doing all summer. He didn't like any of this, but it was all just in case she and Rachel were found out. Quinn felt safer this way. Plus, it made her more comfortable with constantly bringing Rachel over.
Rachel had spent quite a lot of time at the Fabray home this summer. At the start, she even got to help paint the rooms that were still setup to paint. Jesse, his uncle, and Mrs. Fabray worked in their own selected areas while Rachel and Quinn redid Quinn's room. It was both fun and informative, but she suspects she had more fun with it than Quinn had. (Quinn saw no reason to redesign her room when she'd be moving out in a couple of months.) Regardless, the experience did wonders for making her feel more at home there, not to mention she now had at least some type of relationship with Quinn's mother. Judy, as Rachel was instructed to call her, seemed to like her which was a plus. She and Quinn were even invited to Jesse and Judy's movie nights. It was Quinn who tended to have major problems with these films. She just couldn't sit through them in their entirety. Not wanting to sit in her room alone, she usually pestered either Jesse or Rachel to come upstairs with her. Odd how Rachel never allowed Jesse to take her up on her offer. It just wouldn't be fair. It was half his movie night after all.
Both girls loved these nights. It gave them timed exploration. Because that was a new thing of theirs. They loved exploring each other. They never rushed. They never pressured. They just touched, pushing boundaries and establishing lines. But the longer summer went on, the more flimsy those boundaries became. So having a time limit made everything a little easier as did having Jesse and Quinn's mother downstairs. There was much less of a temptation to get completely lost in each other. Usually they ended these nights by having quiet conversations. And they were actual conversations. They weren't about Mario Brothers or football or Avatar. They were about things that mattered. Hopes, memories, fears. It was intimate, and it gave the timed exploring a run for its money.
Not everything in their bubble was perfect, though. There were still differences between them which resulted in disagreements. They were both still stubborn so those disagreements usually became arguments. Rachel sometimes lost her patience when Quinn was still less than forthcoming with her. And Quinn sometimes lost her patience when Rachel was painstakingly optimistic and cheerful about everything. To some degree they were both perfectionists, unwilling to change the way they go about doing certain tasks. They were definitely both high-maintenance and at times somewhat demanding. To top it off, they were also both competitors so the arguments didn't end unless one of them looked at it logically and took the higher road. It was not as easy as it sounded. But the important part was that they both tried and were committed to this so they always worked on resolving whatever it was that was driving them both nuts.
Their latest argument was started by Rachel and easily helped along by Quinn. After growing closer and being happy together for so many weeks, it was clear this wasn't a mistake and, provided something catastrophic, they wouldn't be breaking up any time soon. Therefore, though glee was technically over, they could be considered a power couple by most standards. So Rachel decided that their relationship definitely needed its own moniker. Quinn rebutted with the idea that their own separate names were fine. She never liked how the glee club did this with each other. There was a reason she denied Sam and made sure Finn never even got the idea in his head. Rachel still went through with it anyway and tried coming up with several possible portmanteaus. None were exactly to her liking until finally it hit her like a strike of lightening. She in turn ran straight to Quinn as this would obviously change the blonde's opinion. Rachel's conclusion:
"We'll be called Quinntessenchel only the 'quin' will have two 'n's and the 't-i-a-l' will be spelled 'c-h-e-l.' If you say it fast enough it sounds exactly the same. Get it? Not only is it our names combined, at least partially, but it's also sort of a pun. And let's face it, TomKat sounds much more appealing and is much more creative than that of Brangelina."
Suffice to say, Quinn wasn't swayed, and they were still just Rachel and Quinn.
Other problems they faced, well it was just one, but it was a big one. Big in the sense of annoying and difficult. The gleeks who were still around spent this Fourth of July watching fireworks at Elm Wood Park and Pond like everyone in Lima always did. (Jesse decided he preferred where his family celebrated.) Anyway, Rachel had a serious problem with the event. See, there were a couple families of both ducks and swans that lived in the pond during the summer. It was their home and obviously the firework show was to disturb it without permission. After she stormed off, Quinn volunteered to be the one to check on her as any good friend would do. For once this probably wasn't their best idea. It took around ten minutes, but Tina and Mercedes found them in a, well, heated embrace. To her credit, Tina didn't share anything with anyone other than Mike. Mercedes on the other hand…
Word spread quickly throughout the group and most ended up being more surprised by how many of them already knew. Quinn and Rachel weren't exactly mad about this, well Rachel wasn't anyway. She mostly understood that catching her hand under Quinn's shirt behind a city employee's truck was reasonably shocking to both girls. So they weren't mad…at least not before Finn found out. He was told last; flippantly by Brittany who didn't get the memo. Predictably, he didn't take it well. Jesse found his perpetual pout to be absolutely hysterical (and to be honest, so did Quinn), but that was the only positive outcome to mention. Finn walked around for days with one of his angry-frowns, constantly ranting about how everyone in the world was out to get him and how Rachel and Quinn were obviously just doing this to hurt him. Rachel tried talking to him. Quinn tried talking to him. Kurt tried talking to him. It ended up taking Puck sitting him down and having a "bro day." Whatever that entailed seemed to work. Finn still wasn't happy about this, and he wasn't exactly thrilled that every girl he was romantically attached to was, like, part gay, but at least he stopped throwing tantrums.
They were less secretive after that. They didn't do much more than hold hands when they knew they had an audience (because God, did New Directions watch them closely for a while). There just wasn't any reason to be when around their friends anyway. They still didn't change anything in either of their homes. Earlier on for various reasons, they agreed not to tell their parents that they were dating anytime soon. Recently, they talked about it and neither had a problem with telling Rachel's dads. It was up to Rachel when she wanted that to take place which was a good thing. The longer they were together, the more Rachel wanted to reveal everything. She loved talking about Quinn, and truthfully, no one really ever wanted to listen. She knew her fathers would. They liked her friend Quinn, and they've commented on their closeness from time to time. And unlike in Quinn's home, there wasn't any fear of possible judgment or rejection. It's just…as selfish as it was she greatly enjoyed the sneaking around aspect. It was exciting and heightened every emotion, and they already lost that in the company of glee. Personally, Rachel had no problems of keeping her and Quinn a secret until the end of summer.
Quinn had no problems of never telling her mother anything; not for a long while at least. For the most part, Jesse had done a relatively good job of staying out of Quinn's relationship with Rachel. He just made teasing comments now and again. This, however, he was getting involved in. He felt it was best that Quinn told her mother. It was where their therapy sessions had ultimately moved to. Just Jesse constantly pestering her on her fear and avoidance of coming out to her mother. He understood, of course, given the Fabray history, but he honestly didn't see Judy turning her back on Quinn regardless of the circumstances. He has spent an abundant amount of hours with Judy over the last year. Almost all of their conversations revolved around pop culture or Quinn. He doubted Judy would volunteer to lose her daughter once again, but despite telling her all of this, Quinn still had her reservations. Quinn wanted to have her own life and be settled in New York to the point where she could support herself before she took those unnecessary risks. It was reasonable, and she was tired of Jesse pressuring her about it.
Rachel respected her decision. She understood that Quinn would come out to her mother when she was ready and only when she was ready. That's just who Rachel was. She would push Quinn on the little things that realistically weren't important but with the bigger things, she allowed Quinn to work at her own pace. Rachel simply tried to get her to talk about whatever it was. It was nice, and it didn't take much for Quinn to open up to Rachel, but to some extent that was true long before they even developed a friendship. Quinn appreciated it. She had more than enough people throughout her life telling her what to do, and Rachel transcended that. The degree in which Quinn was falling for the girl was honestly starting to scare the ever loving crap out of her. It just happened to be a good fear to have.
She wouldn't say the words, though. She couldn't. There were still other fears. Terrible fears. She'd be there as long as Rachel would have her, but who knew how long that would be? Quinn would not put herself in that position. If the worst case scenario did come to pass and they did lose their relationship, it would hurt regardless, but at least this way Quinn would be able to save some type of face. If she did get her heart broken, then at the very least she'd still have her pride. Rachel tried to assure her not to worry about these types of concerns. Rachel wasn't going anywhere either. She wouldn't be planning portions of her future around Quinn if she was. Rachel was still working on trying not to be impulsive in this relationship, and she really didn't see there to be a need to rush. Fine, she saw a great need because she enjoyed romance and proclamations of love and feelings but she was taking her time; at least over summer. Rachel imagined New York would be a different story.
Their last week of summer spent together ended up being the first week in August. Jesse had found an apartment in their price range that was too good to pass up. He and his father flew to New York to take a look. Its living room, kitchen, and bathroom were probably the smallest known to man, but it had two sizable bedrooms and that was much more important to them. Jesse sent photos back home with his phone, and after it was okayed, Jesse's dad was signing the lease as their guarantor. They officially had their first apartment, and now they had to move in. Some were taking it better than others.
"I just don't think it's very fair is all."
"So you've said." Quinn shook her head with a smile before turning to place another item into the box she was haphazardly filling. Since someone had been distracting her over the last few days, Quinn still had a few things to pack up. She swore Rachel had been doing it on purpose. She looked across her room and over to the girl in question. "What are you-" Quinn frowned before walking over to Rachel and yanking the shirt from her hands. "Stop." She giggled, placing the shirt back into the box she had already filled.
"It was a solid attempt."
"It's just three weeks." Quinn reminded softly.
"More like eternity." She muttered solemnly before Quinn was moving forward to rubbing her sides in a comforting gesture. It was considerably cheating. Rachel looked back up to continue with her thoughts but was interrupted.
"Quinnie." Judy's voice filtered through the hall, breaking the girls apart as she entered her daughter's room. Rachel wasn't the only one have a hard time seeing Quinn off. Her mother had seemingly been panicking over everything the last couple of days, regardless of how miniscule. "Oh good, you're finally ready." She observed the room, relieved. "Jesse has everything packed in his car. Rachel. It was so nice of you to come over and hurry Quinn along."
Rachel smiled, somewhat guilty, in response. That was hardly what she was doing. She only came over here bright and early this morning to delay a few extra moments with her girlfriend. "Yes, well, I wanted to see Quinn off. And Jesse too of course." She added quickly.
"Then come on." Judy picked up one of the remaining boxes. "We can't have you be late."
"We'll be down in a minute." Quinn told her.
Judy briefly appeared to be disappointed by Quinn still apparently not being 100% ready but agreed to the minute anyway. Quinn watched and listened until she knew for sure that her mother had made it to the stairs. She turned back to Rachel with a smile, and before Rachel could get a word out, Quinn's lips were on hers. Rachel felt herself being guided backwards until they were lying side by side on Quinn's unfairly comfortable mattress.
She pulled away with a teasing grin. "You're making Jesse wait."
"And I feel terrible about that." Quinn joked, reaching over to brush Rachel's bangs aside. They needed to be trimmed. "You'll be in New York before you know it." She tried to remind her calmly.
Rachel didn't join in the tranquility. "No I won't. I'll be in New York in three weeks and then I'll have a whole week of my orientation at Tisch and then classes will be starting and I'll need to become accustomed to my new academic life. It'll be months before we probably see each other again." Quinn laughed at this. Rachel did not appreciate it. "This isn't funny, Quinn."
"Yes it is." She smiled further, and Rachel tried to distract herself from the fact that Quinn was trying to do that trick where she'd stare at Rachel all adoringly and make her eyes literally sparkle to distract from what was going on. Ha. Well, not this time. "You're freaking out over nothing. It's not like we won't be talking."
Rachel simply narrowed her eyes. Quinn's approach had been bugging her all week. "Why are you being so impassive about this?"
"Because if we both spend our time freaking out about this, then I won't go."
She turned over to lie on her back and pouted. "I don't like levelheaded-Quinn."
Rachel didn't want their summer to be over with. Even if it wasn't happening sooner than anticipated, she'd still feel as miserable as she currently did. She's heard the horror stories of college freshmen. Adjusting to a higher learning plateau could very well eat them alive. Before they knew it, they'd be drinking six cups of coffee just to make it through the day all while either gaining fifteen pounds or losing them. Neither option would suit Rachel's petite frame. They'd be burdened by their demanding schedules that would probably not be able to co-exist properly. Regardless of what they desired, summer ending meant seeing each other less. And Rachel liked seeing Quinn.
The relationship she shared with Quinn was –as expected, though maybe not for the obvious reasons– much different than her previous two; three counting Noah. She was the one doing most of the assuring rather than the one looking to be assured as she was when she was with Finn. Unlike with Jesse, she didn't feel to be on an inferior level concerning experience. She knew the details of Quinn's previous relationships just as Quinn knew of hers. There was a balance here, and she was becoming completely enamored with everything Quinn did. She was trying not to. Doing so would in some ways blind her. For instance, she should not find the way Quinn argued with her over how to design a proper itinerary to be absolutely adorable. She also shouldn't find Quinn placing small kisses around her wrist on their stowaway movie nights to be the most pleasurable experience known to mankind. It was just a wrist for goodness sake.
"I just don't see why Jesse can't go alone." She turned to look at Quinn again.
"Because it's our apartment and we still need to finish registering and not to mention shopping." Quinn explained quietly. Jesse and his father had purchased certain pieces of furniture the week they were there, but they still had a ridiculous amount of common apartment items they needed to buy. Quinn really did enjoy how spoiled Jesse was when it benefited her own needs.
"But Kurt's not going." Rachel pointed out.
Quinn half-shrugged. Over the summer, per Rachel's idea, it had been argued and then decided that Kurt would withdraw from his FIT dorm and join Jesse and Quinn in their apartment. Kurt was never exactly sold on the idea of living in a dorm and only went through with it initially because he and Blaine would no longer be going through with their original plan. Rooming with Quinn and Jesse would save him from this along with saving his family money as it would all be split expenses. Quinn and Jesse agreed for similar reasons as Rachel's budget plan showed how every cost would be divided into threes. Financially, it just made sense. As three actual individuals, well, that remained to be seen. Quinn didn't mind sharing a room with Kurt, she just didn't exactly know how to handle playing buffer between both boys. It'd be an experience no matter how it went, that was for sure.
"Kurt's trying to spend more time with Blaine and his family. You know this. Besides, he'll be there in a couple weeks too."
"Well then why can't you leave later? It's not even 8:00 in the morning yet."
"Because it's a ten hour drive provided perfect traffic and MapQuest not screwing us over."
Rachel sighed at Quinn's ability to have an answer for everything. Realistically she understood that Quinn couldn't very well stay just as she knew she wasn't set to leave for New York yet. Reality sucked. "This is a terrible day."
Lacking an actual response, Quinn stood from her bed. "I need to go." She let out her own sigh before pulling Rachel up.
They got halfway to the door before Rachel was stopping them. "Wait." She removed the final box from a now frowning Quinn's hands. Then Rachel arched up on her tiptoes to kiss Quinn one final-for-right-now time. It was the proper thing to do within these occasions after all and plus, "I wouldn't be able to do that outside." She smiled.
The girls finally headed downstairs and then outside to meet Quinn's departure. On her front lawn, Jesse stood talking animatedly with her mother about whatever it was they were always talking about until their arrival was finally noticed.
"Finally. What possibly could have had you two so occupied?" Jesse smirked, his voice feigning confusion.
Quinn glared before handing him over her final box. "I forgot to pack something."
"Well I'm glad you remembered." He returned and then opened his back door, placing the package on the seat.
When everything was set and where it was supposed to be, the goodbyes finally began to come.
"Drive carefully." Judy told her favorite boy Quinn had ever brought over as she gave him a hug and then went to address her daughter.
Jesse looked to Rachel. "Don't I get a goodbye?" He asked teasingly.
"Yes, of course." She replied, moving to give him a hug of her own. "Don't lose your talent."
"Rachel, don't joke about those things."
Next to them, Judy and Quinn were pulling out of the similar exchange. "Call me when you arrive. I love you."
"You too." Quinn smiled at her mom before sending Jesse a recognizable look.
He rolled his eyes, turning away. "Judy, tell me. Before I go, do you think my room should be decorated with autumn colors or spring?"
"Oh." Judy smiled at the request before going into a list of just what colors she thought Jesse should decorate with.
Quinn and Rachel moved a little farther away as Jesse thoroughly worked through his form of a distraction. Quinn suspected he was actually listening to her mother's curtain advice. "It's three weeks." She said one more time, and Rachel could only nod. Shortly, her arms were wrapped tightly around Quinn's midsection as she buried her face in her neck. Quinn dropped a kiss into Rachel's hair before she unfortunately had to disentangle them.
"Come on." Jesse pulled Quinn to his car.
After a few more goodbyes and a couple of waves, Quinn and Jesse were finally off. First they would be heading to pick up his Uncle Stew as the man agreed to drive with them to New York in order to be the one to drive Jesse's car back tomorrow. It had been decided that Jesse wanted a true New York life and that there was no longer a need for him to have a car.
Once the ride remained silent for one too many moments past Jesse's liking, he briefly looked to the girl in his passenger seat. "Is this the part where you start crying?" Quinn laughed lightly. "Really, Quinn, it'd be quite alright. It'd lessen the romance of it all if you didn't."
She rolled her eyes. "I don't feel like crying. But I will probably be randomly snapping at you for the next couple of weeks."
"Looking forward to it." They both shared a smirk.
This wasn't that far off from being accurate. Quinn would predictably be irritable over the next several days. There had only probably been around three or four total days this summer where she and Rachel hadn't actually seen each other. No matter how short she liked to keep saying it was, these next three weeks were going to be pathetically unbearable. And it wasn't like watching Rachel's sad-wave from the window had been at all easy. But she wasn't going to cry. Not today. Today for all intents and purposes was a happy day. In a short while from now she would be driving past a sign that read 'You Are Now Leaving Lima, Ohio. Come Back Soon.' At one time that seemed impossible.
"It's nice out." Quinn commented, gazing out of her window.
"Yes." Jesse agreed. "It is."
It was the perfect day to start anew.
A/N1: First off, I'm going to apologize for the length of these author notes, but I ramble when I lack sleep. I would like to thank everyone who read and reviewed. I can honestly say that I've never received reviews quite like the ones I got for this story. They were greatly appreciated, particularly through the middle chapters as I used them for motivation. (I cannot stress how much I loathed writing 13-16.) Despite joining this website years ago, I still don't know the unwritten courtesies of replying to reviews, mainly because I maintain the less I know about the internet the more I like myself, so I hope I didn't offend anyone by not replying to your lengthy, thought-out reviews.
A/N2: Now for some free background. Once upon a time this story was just supposed to be about the Quinn/Jesse dynamic as during "Prom Queen" I became slightly obsessed with the idea of them pairing up in some capacity to wreak havoc on every other character in Glee. Then I watched the following two episodes and decided it'd be better to go with another idea I was obsessed with which was give Quinn a meddling, unwanted non-therapist. Jesse's in-need-of-a-sit-com character worked out perfectly, but as I was outlining, it was once again brought to my attention that I can't give two fucks about Glee anymore unless Faberry is involved. Thus the last 26 chapters of subplots and drawn-out character focus. Looking at it from the relationship angle, I clearly ended this right when it should probably begin. Personally, if this was an alternate-ish Season Three, then I would sorta like to do an alternate-ish Season Four namely for myself. Truthfully I used the second half of this story to setup a possible continuation anyway. My mind likes to plot so it's basically already planned and is now just a matter of time and execution. Of course it should also be mentioned that I no longer watch the show, I haven't paid much attention to the fandom at all since early August, and I kinda, really need to take a few weeks to get away from fanfiction in general. So in case I lose my attention span here's a crappy taunt and in case I do get around to it here's a crappy preview if you're interested:
A sequel would only focus on Quinn, Rachel, Jesse, and Kurt, and eventually Santana and Karofsky would be tagging along because this story didn't have enough Santana in it for my liking. Jesse would charm his way through Manhattan, working to get his grove back while not at all hysterically trying to break into show business. Rachel would deal with having dorm mates and the fact that for the first time, she's surrounded by people who are all as talented as she is. Quinn, along with Jesse, would still be working on her issues and fears but would be moving toward independence as she tried figuring out what she wanted to do with her life. Kurt would question if a career in fashion is really what he wanted and explore his romantic life post-Blaine because, yes, I would realistically break them up. After a long explanation on how and why Santana and Dave got to New York, Santana's character would be explored sans Brittany because seeing that has always interested me. Dave would see how comfortable he was with possibly being completely out even if New York isn't the same as Lima. There would also be a first crush scenario. As far as the Faberry relationship, there would be no breakups, but it certainly wouldn't be obstacle free. And get this; it'd be like the main focus. Jump back, Sally, I know.