You Have No Faith
In March, a brown penny loafer stepped out onto the cement, quickly followed by its counterpart. A pair of jeans followed suit. Finally, a purple polo shirt coated by long, wavy brown hair made its appearance on the sidewalk. Rachel Berry hesitantly scanned the mostly-empty parking lot before turning back to the car and flashing her dads a reassuring smile. Donning a brighter smile, she briskly made her way toward the front steps of the school. Ever since the egging, Rachel has had a hard time of walking through the parking lot without hearing baby chicks screaming in her ear.
Today was a special day though. At school an hour after classes had gotten out, Rachel was ecstatic. One Finn Hudson had arranged a singing practice in the choir room today, and Rachel was never one to turn down a chance to help her fellow gleeks perfect their vocal techniques. Rachel had even had enough time to run home after her post-school slushy attack to change her clothes before the practice started. She was almost at the doors to the school when she heard a cry of anguish. Pausing momentarily, Rachel thought that nothing good could come from a cry like that. Flashes of her - alone - in the school parking lot flashed through her mind as she steeled her shoulders. Deferred and now on a path of heroism, Rachel ran towards the sound.
She found herself on the school's soccer field/make-shift lacrosse field. The lacrosse team, consisting of ten brutish guys, were surrounding a rather nerdy boy. Rachel's brow furrowed at the insults the players were throwing at the boy, accompanying each with a poke from their respective lacrosse sticks. Rachel hesitated, after all, while she did pack a powerful verbal punch, she was 5'2" and quite alone - save the nerdy boy who was sadly crying at this point. Rachel sighed, cursing her ambitious and righteous heart, and stomped up to the debacle.
"Hey!" Rachel called out, wincing slightly at the lameness of the word. The brutes turned to her, giving the nerd enough time to scramble away in a different direction. Rachel considered running herself, since her point was to save the nerd and she had clearly done that. But she hesitated a second too long, and suddenly she was surrounded by the entire lacrosse team.
"Well look at this guys, it's the school tranny!" The tallest of the boys shouted, snickering at the cat calls that his teammates let loose. "What brings you to our court, hot stuff?"
Rachel cringed, "Rest assured, I did not purposely search you out. I saw how you were taking out your poorly placed aggression on that weaker boy, and I was merely righting a wrong."
Another boy rolled his eyes and growled out, "The rumors were true, you really don't know when to shut the hell up, do you?"
Rachel, admittedly, was scared at this point. "I didn't mean to anger you, if you'll just kindly make a break in your circle then I'll be out of your way-" she said while turning to leave. A rough hand pushed her back to the middle of the circle, cutting off her sentence and almost sending her sprawling into the grass.
"Wait just a second. You wanted a piece of us, didn't you Berry?"
"You did come over here to us during our practice."
Rachel was losing track of who was talking at this point. She wrapped her arms around herself and forced her eyes to the tallest player, the captain, "I-I'm very close friends with Finn Hudson and Noah Puckerman, and if you do anything to me I assure you that they will make you pay."
The captain laughed and nudged the slightly shorter boy next to him, "You hear that? She thinks potato head and Homer Simpson are going to come after us if we break their lawn gnome." The boy turned back to Rachel and raised an eyebrow, "You know, there are some rumors around school that you're more of a man than a girl, but you seem pretty damn hot, actually."
More snickers were heard around the circle and Rachel's heart was almost beating out of her chest, "I highly suggest that you reconsider whatever horrible ideas are passing through your mind. My f-fathers have a team of skilled lawyers and I will-"
Her mouth snapped shut as the captain grabbed the front of her polo and pulled her flush against him. Rachel started furiously beating her small fists against his chest, but he just laughed and grabbed her butt, "I don't even know your first name, Berry, but I guarantee you're going to scream mine in a few minutes."
Thirty feet away, Santana cursed as she looked at the time on her cell phone, "We're going to be late for that stupid glee thing, Britt. Couldn't you have just pet the damn ducks after practice?"
The tall blonde pouted as she strolled along next to Santana, "I didn't think coach would make us stay after and run extra laps! I couldn't help it, San. There was a brown one!"
Santana sighed and pulled her Cheerios bag higher on her shoulder. She stopped abruptly thanks to Brittany's hand on her shoulder, "San? Isn't that Rachel?"
Santana rolled her eyes and straightened her Cheerios uniform, "It's probably just another duck Brittany, come on."
Santana made to walk again but Brittany firmly pulled on her arm, "No, seriously S. Look, the lacrosse guys are bullying her."
Santana's eyes snapped to follow Brittany's gaze. Her body tensed as she saw (and heard) a screaming Rachel desperately try to stop the lacrosse captain from pulling off her shirt. "Brittany," she hissed, handing the blonde her duffel bag, "go inside. Tell everyone that I'll be late." Brittany nodded and jogged inside while Santana made a beeline for the group.
No one noticed the Cheerio seeing as how they were all busy shouting encouragements to their captain. Santana thought she might be foaming at the mouth, wondering both why she cared so much in the first place and why her legs wouldn't move any faster as she narrowed the gap between her and the team. She bent down mid-run and grabbed a previously dropped lacrosse stick. In one fluid motion, she brought the stick back - and with a force rivaling this joke of a captain - brought the stick up right between his legs. The stick cracked on contact with his groin and he let out a yell loud enough to make Santana smirk.
Rachel was dropped as the jock fell to his knees. Santana had already picked up another stick and she didn't exert any mercy as she broadsided the fallen jock's head. One of the teammates made a grab for Santana, but years of intense lacrosse training were nothing compared to what Santana had been through for the Cheerios. She heard a crack when she swung again and the stick made contact with the boy's jaw. Santana grinned when she saw that it wasn't the stick that had cracked.
The Cheerio was almost disappointed when the rest of the team sprinted away from the lacrosse stick-wielding girl. "Don't worry you pansies," she screamed after them, "I'll get the rest of you later." She swore she heard one of them start to cry, and her smug face showed her happiness.
Santana paused in her satisfaction however, when she realized something was missing. Dropping the stick, she stopped seeing red long enough to remember why she was beating people. She hastened over to Rachel, who was sitting on her knees in the grass, arms wrapped around her chest.
She hesitated, not exactly knowing how to comfort someone that wasn't Brittany. Then she cursed silently as she saw the tears running from Rachel's wide eyes. Approaching the diva slowly, Santana spoke calmly, "Uhm, it's okay. They're gone now."
Rachel blinked her eyes slowly, finally turning her head to Santana, "You saved me."
Santana shrugged, "I may be a bitch, but I'm sure as hell not going to let you be impregnated by the lacrosse team."
Rachel slowly stood up, keeping her wary eyes on the two broken players that were still laying in the grass, "I could've been…" she trailed off, keeping her arms crossed across her chest.
Santana shifted her weight hesitantly, "But you weren't. You're fine now, so man up Berry."
Sighing, Rachel looked back to Santana, "Can you not call me that? Not right now, at least. That's what he," she spat towards the fallen captain, "called me because he didn't know my first name."
Santana's furious eyes bore holes in the back of the boy's head, "Yeah, okay. Rachel, are you okay now?"
Rachel bit her trembling lip and nodded. Santana nodded back, finally calmed down enough to survey the damage. She raked her eyes over Rachel's bruised face and ripped shirt. Santana rolled off her Cheerio's jacket and tossed it to Rachel. "Put that on, your shirt is ripped."
Rachel caught the coat and seemingly finally snapped out of her trance, "Thank you Santana," she whispered, shocked. She delicately pulled on the coat and smiled shyly at Santana.
Santana groaned, "I'm going to regret this, aren't I?"
Rachel ducked her head and softly smiled, "No, you aren't. It's just… I got into this situation because I was trying to be a knight in shining armor to another person, but I ended up being the victim."
Santana cocked an eyebrow, her narcissistic heart swelling, "What are you trying to say, Ber… er, Rachel?"
Rachel shrugged, suddenly far more nervous than she was two minutes ago, finally realizing who it was she was talking to, "I'm sort of intimated by you Santana, to be honest. But since you so bravely - and uncharacteristically, I might add - came to my rescue, I'm willing to share my thoughts with you." Santana snorted and rolled her eyes. Rachel continued on, ignoring her, "I've always had a soft spot for a knight in bright, white, shining armor. I'm completely floored that the first time I see a different side of you, it's finding out that you are the epitome of my whimsical thoughts."
Santana wished she could've tuned the shorter girl out, but her eyes focused on the bruise on Rachel's face that was way too close to her mouth to ignore the words coming out of it. "You are such a freak. You think I'm your knight in white, shining armor? How 1950's of you." Rachel's head dropped slightly, and Santana felt a pang in her heart that wasn't the normal vindictive pang she was so used to. She knew she'd regret this later, so damn much. "I'm a Hispanic knight, Berry. Caramel armor."
Rachel's head snapped up and a dazzling smile lit up her features. Santana rolled her head on her shoulders, knowing for a fact that she was going to regret this. She was about to mumble something about how she should have let Brittany come to her rescue instead when suddenly, the jock with the broken jaw moaned from his spot on the grass.
Rachel speed walked around Santana and planted her feet firmly behind the taller girl. She leaned up and whispered into her ear, "Hit him again!"
Santana winced at the feeling of hot breath on her ear, shuddering slightly before whispering back, "Go lay down in the grass and play dead." She chuckled as she heard Rachel's sigh of exasperation before calling out to the boy with the broken jaw, "Rise and shine dipshit, your team tucked their tails between their legs and left you here."
The boy, who Santana knew enough to know his name was Josh, sat up and groaned as his hand flew to his jaw. He looked to his captain and spat out, "You bitch. We're going to sue your ass for this, Lopez!"
Santana gave him a carnivorous look, and suddenly she felt Rachel's hand on her arm. It only stayed for a moment before Rachel took a confident step from behind Santana to next to her. "Excuse me, remember me? If you recall, before you all started your poorly executed attempt at sexually assaulting me, I brought up my fathers' team of lawyers. Not only are my two dads gay, but one of my fathers is an attorney. There is no way that you would get away with assault charges on Santana because she was defending me. If you decide to press charges on her, I will in turn press charges on each of you individually. We have witnesses and pictures (Santana raised an eyebrow at this but said nothing) that we will use to guarantee us a win in the courtroom. My fathers have astounding pull with the OCRC and the D.A. You will be sent to Juvi until you hit puberty at eighteen and then you will be transported to the Ohio Criminal Penitentiary. Would you like that to happen?"
Josh stared at Rachel dumbly, his eyes flicking between hers and Santana's, before dropping his head, "Fuck you guys," he murmured before attempting to wake his captain up.
Santana nudged Rachel, "Come on. We're done here. Let's go to the stupid glee thing."
Rachel nodded furiously before turning back towards the school. She hesitated for a moment, however, before turning back and running up to the unconscious boy. She gave him a swift kick to the stomach before hurrying back to Santana. She ignored the girl's questioning gaze and simply shrugged. Santana walked a pace behind Rachel while smirking, thinking that she may have underestimated the girl.
Rachel made approximately three attempts at hooking her arm through the other girl's arm. All three times she failed. Santana did however, open and hold the door for Rachel as the brunette walked into the choir room. The two girls were met with gasps and Santana was met with accusations.
After ten minutes of misplaced accusations, Puck was able to control himself and Finn long enough for Brittany and Rachel to explain what had happened. Santana stood next to Mike and Matt, arms folded over her chest with a look that could kill. Finn walked up to her while she saw Rachel smile encouragingly at her from behind the oaf's back, "Santana, I'm really sorry that I blamed you for doing that to Rachel. I didn't know what happened and I'm just really protective of her."
Santana rolled her eyes, "Please. As if I'd ever lay a hand on that thing." Everyone in the room rolled their eyes and shook their heads at Santana. Everyone except Rachel. Santana met her eyes, fully expecting to see the pain she so usually saw there after a well-placed, clever insult. Instead, Rachel had a knowing smile on her face, and it took all Santana had to scowl at the brunette instead of smile back at her. Rachel only smiled wider at that, and Santana growled loud enough to make Mike take a step away from her.
Two months later, and Rachel had yet to be slushied. She didn't understand it. Two months prior, she had expected a huge backlash by the lacrosse team, yet, nothing. She wasn't even being slushied by the usual culprits anymore.
She walked down the hall to her locker after school one Wednesday, her green argyle skirt swishing behind her. She clutched her books to her chest as she let her eyes wander the hall. Tensing, she sees Karofsky making his way toward her. Rachel closes her eyes and freezes, mid-stride. She waited. And waited. Peeking through one eye, Rachel watched Karofsky walk by her without so much as a glance her way.
She turned on her heel and watched him walk down the hall and out the front doors. Shell-shocked, Rachel took in a few breaths of air before shaking her head.
"You're blocking the hall, Pebbles," Santana called from in front of Rachel, leaning against a locker with her arms folded across her chest and a lazy glare on her face.
Rachel's eyes took a detour from the front door to settle on Santana. In front of her. In Karofsky's line of sight. Cocking an eyebrow, the diva speed walked over to Santana. "You're behind this," she said, completely aghast.
Santana surveyed the hallway, decided it was empty enough, and smiled a real smile. Rachel's breath hitched in her throat - out of fear or something else entirely, she couldn't decide - and stared Santana down. "You aren't going to deny it?"
Santana rolled her eyes, "Why would I need to, Berry? I'll admit," she said, pushing off of the locker and walking towards the choir room, "through some severe lack of judgment - that I'm hoping is merely a tumor or something else out of my control - I've taken it upon myself to watch out for you."
She paused, turning back to see Rachel still standing by the locker, "What the hell, Yoshi? Are you coming?"
Rachel blinked, her big doe eyes glossed with confusion. She was hesitant before Santana's words sunk in, and the Cheerio almost laughed at the emotional transition that played across the shorter girl's face. "Yoshi? As in the short, green dinosaur with the long tongue that Mario rides on?"
Santana feigned rapt attention, pretending to ponder Rachel's angry question. Smirking, she shrugged, "Yeah, that one. The one that blows shit out of its ass all of the time."
Rachel looked disgusted, "Those are eggs, Santana."
Secretly, Santana was just impressed that Rachel knew that much about one of her favorite videogames. "Same difference. Now, are we going to the choir room or not?"
Rachel still hesitated, "Why are you doing this? Is this some huge, elaborate practical joke? Because I have a mental library of every insult and bullying tactic you've ever thrown at me and this would top them all. Maybe I just don't understand."
Furious eyes scanned the hall another time before she hissed, "Damnet, Rachel. I don't understand it myself, okay? Brittany says it has something to do with compassion and my heart and how you have a part of it, or some sappy shit like that. I say it's because we went through a traumatic experience together and that like, did something or triggered something. I've seen that on the Discovery channel, and it makes more sense."
Rachel ducked her head and shook it, "So, you care about me, Santana?"
Santana glared at the brunette, hard. She reached into her backpack and pulled out Rachel's Spanish and English book, handing them to the wide-eyed brunette. "Enough to have Puck break into your locker and get these for you to save you some time. Since you like to be early to glee to keep track of who's late and other annoying crap like that," she finished with a shrug.
Rachel chose to ignore the fact that Santana had broken into her locker. She also chose to ignore why this gave her the butterflies that Finn and Puck so rarely gave her anymore. Santana chose to ignore the fact that Rachel had her Cheerios jacket in her locker.
Rachel allowed Santana to escort her to glee, much to Santana's defiance of having it labeled that way, and Rachel tried approximately two more times to link arms with Santana.
She did not succeed.
Two weeks later, Rachel walked into the glee room covered in slushy. Grape slushy, and although Santana knew that was Rachel's favorite due to an awkwardly placed comment on Puck's part, it clashed horribly with Rachel's favorite yellow cardigan. Tina and Mercedes groaned as they approached Rachel, patting her shoulder encouragingly and mumbling about how they'd take care of her in the same bathroom as usual.
Santana was seething. She vaguely heard Brittany question, "I thought those had stopped? I thought you made a school-wide rule?" Santana's eyes were locked on Rachel's disgruntled form as she watched the girl try to hold in her tears while pulling slushy from her hair. Santana didn't miss the betrayed look Rachel threw her way before Mercedes and Tina ushered her from the room, emergency-slushy kit in hand.
Finn turned over to her and Brittany, "They had stopped, but Karofsky had a bad day or something. He went all batshit on Rachel in the hall. The damage was done by the time I dragged him away," he said, shrugging and turning back to Mike.
Brittany turned away from Finn, "I think that Rachel thinks - Santana?" Brittany questioned the now empty chair beside her. "Santana?"
Twenty minutes later, Rachel stood outside of the glee room, arms across her chest and her foot tapping the linoleum of the hallway. "I told you this, already."
Tina and Mercedes exchanged a look before Mercedes spoke up again, "Look, you're telling me that it just slipped your mind to give her jacket back to her, when its been sitting in your locker for two months?"
Rachel rolled her eyes, "Yes! I don't see why this is a big deal. If I had brought my extra set of clothes I wouldn't be reduced to wearing this over my white tank top, but school rules say that-"
"Rachel! The point we're trying to make is that you still have her jacket. Santana Lopez's varsity Cheerio jacket. Do you know what this means?"
Mercedes' eyes lit up, "Oh girl, remember that school wide memo S had circulated? About the no-slushy policy? And they have been getting a lot closer!"
Tina clapped her hands together, "And Puck told Mike who told Finn who told Artie who, duh, told me that Santana texts Rachel sometimes and has Puck break into her locker to get her stuff for her classes!"
Rachel cleared her throat loudly, a murderous look in her eye. "If you two girls are finished talking about me as if I'm not apparently standing a foot away from you, I'll gladly point out where your gossip is incorrect. I assume you're leading to the horribly mistaken conclusion that me and cheerleader Santana Lopez have something-"
A cloud crackle makes the three girls wince as the loudspeaker interrupts Rachel, "Excuse me, excuse me," Principal Figgin's' voice awkwardly rings out, "we have a code blue in the boy's locker room. Karofsky is down. Oh," there's a pause, "Whoops. Wasn't supposed to say his name. I repeat, anonymous code blue in the boy's locker room."
Mercedes and Tina smile at Rachel, who is currently staring at the loudspeaker with her jaw dropped, speechless. Tina leans into the glee room and finds Brittany. Brittany, who is now sitting by herself, waves at Tina. Tina waves back. "Guess who's missing from the glee room?"
Rachel, shocking to both Tina and Mercedes, is still speechless.
One week later, Rachel was finally able to corner Santana. And by corner Rachel means storming into the Cheerio locker room on a Thursday after practice and bribing Brittany with a duck sticker so that she could talk to Santana in private.
Santana sat on the bench, sweaty from practice but in a good enough mood to have a smirk plastered on her face as she watched Rachel pace in front of her. She leaned her head back against a locker and grabbed the ends of the towel that was slung behind her neck.
"Santana Lopez, I want the truth from you."
"Fine. I was the one who wrote Yoshi on the inside of all of your binders."
"I - wait," Rachel gasped, "that was you? Santana, your skill level of drawing is rather impressive. Your depiction of Yoshi left little to be desired."
Santana scoffed, "It's not as fun when you don't get mad. What the hell are you interrogating me for now?"
"I thought it was you who ordered that slushy on me two weeks ago. At the time, I was thrown off by how surprising and hurtful it was to think that you were the one who did it. Which I find ironic, because three months ago you were the bane of my existence and a horrible, horrible bully to me. Then you became my Hispanic knight. Then my watchdog. Lately, I've been tormenting myself with wondering when this is all going to come crashing down on me. So I just need you to tell me the truth so I can at least get back to my normal sleeping habits. Were you the one who sent Karofsky to the hospital?"
Santana, surprisingly, had paid attention through Rachel's entire rant. Her eyes were hard as she was met with Rachel's even, unwavering stare. "Yes."
Rachel hesitated only briefly. "That day I was forced to wear your varsity jacket because I neglected to bring an extra change of clothes and it was thankfully still in my locker thanks to another negligent moment on my part." Santana shrugged, as if saying 'so what'? "Tina and Mercedes cornered me and threw their proof in my face about a ridiculous rumor that they seem to think is true."
Santana sat up a little straighter, "And what rumor is that, Yoshi?"
Rachel didn't even blush as she folded her arms over her chest, "That you and I have something going on, or at the very least, have feelings for each other. I was in the middle of my rebuttal when we found out that Karofsky was code blue and you were, inconveniently for my point, missing from the glee room."
Rachel's eyebrows furrowed at the lack of emotion on the latina's face. "Well? Can you tell me that they're wrong, Santana?"
"Can you tell me that they're wrong?"
Rachel said nothing. Reaching back, she pulled the Cheerio jacket from her backpack - neatly folded, of course - and handed it to Santana. Wordlessly, she left the locker room.
The next day was an extended glee rehearsal. One that Rachel was looking forward to, and one that Rachel was now late to.
"Finn, please. As captains we're supposed to be there and this is bordering on ridiculous because-"
"Rachel, please," he cut her off, "this is the only time I've managed to get you alone and I need to say this now. I want to fix us."
Rachel looked pained, pulling her backpack straps tighter to her chest and groaning inwardly. "Finn, I'm sorry. We had our shot, it didn't work out. I moved on. You're a dear friend to me but that is all."
Finn stamped his foot and was about to cry - or so Santana tells it - when the cheerleader herself called out, "Finnocence, she's moved on. Time for you to."
Finn turned, confused, to Santana. "Santana? What are you doing here? Hasn't glee started?"
Avoiding Rachel's suspicious eyes, Santana pressed on, "It has. Schuester is looking for you two, he's sweating so badly we think his hair might go flat. Why don't you run along, QB, and calm his nerves."
"Santana where do you get off-"
"She's right, Finn. I need to speak to Santana privately, anyway. Tell Mr. Schuester that we'll be there in five minutes."
Finn, pissed off, sighed and shrugged, "Whatever, Rachel." He walked away but paused. "Oh, and Santana? If you could stop benching my football guys, it would make winning games a lot easier. These injuries are putting them out for the whole season."
Santana looked provoked as she bit out, "Well maybe if your white ass could enforce my harassment rules then we'd be fine. I'm the only one allowed to harass people now. Teach your teammates that and I won't have to do it for you."
Finn's sad puppy look did nothing for Santana as he dejectedly meandered back to the glee room. She didn't face Rachel, but as usual, the pint-sized girl's voice carried itself to Santana's ears anyway.
"I can't. I can't tell you that I don't know when it happened, either. Because I do. It happened that day on the soccer field, and then every other day after that. I thought at first I'd gone insane. I doubled my sessions with my therapist, to no avail. It took almost three months, but I finally admitted that I wasn't keeping your jacket because I felt bad about not washing it before returning it. And when Principal Figgins interrupted me that day, I was glad. I hadn't had a rebuttal for Tina and Mercedes. Not an honest one, at least."
Santana turned to Rachel and sighed. Rachel's eyes were honest and she looked completely vulnerable. Her eyes scanned the diva's face. Sighing again, completely pissed off, Santana turned and walked away from Rachel and into the choir room. She didn't meet Rachel's eyes when she came in five minutes after Santana.
A half an hour later, Santana stood up in the middle of Kurt's solo rehearsal of Rose's Turn. Half of the club wasn't paying attention, anyway. She grabbed Rachel's arm and ignored Mr. Schue and Finn's yells of annoyance.
Rachel tore her arm from Santana's grasp once they were in the hallway. She was furious, opening her mouth to shout harassment accusations, when Santana cut her off.
"I can't either, okay? Look, I know you're pissed at me for walking away from you in the hallway before. I would be pissed at me too. But I was pissed because I had a really fucking awesome speech prepared, and then yours was better than mine. I didn't think that would fly with you, so I had to buy myself more time to think of an even better speech. But then I thought about it, and I mean, I'm Santana fucking Lopez. I don't need a really awesome speech to tell you that I don't want my damn jacket. Okay? I want you to have it and I want you to wear it. I don't want you to be shocked every time I stick up for you and watch out for you. You're little, you know? You're the littlest one in glee and I love that. I love that everyone comes to me now before they do anything that they think might hurt you. It's this unspoken thing that just fell into place one day.
"This whole thing is seriously dysfunctional as hell, but I've talked it through with Brittany a lot and she's said the same thing every time, and you know what? She's right. That stupid rumor isn't wrong. I've weighed my reputation against being with you, and I've come to the decision that I can have both. You're high maintenance enough as it is and everyone tries to stay away from you, and we all know people part like the God damn red sea when I pass through the halls. We'd be powerful. Everyone thinks we're already together anyway."
Santana eyed Rachel carefully, and winced at the slightly hurt look in the girl's eyes. "The bottom line though, when all of the shit hit the fan for me… I realized I'd thought more about being with you than about my reputation. I'm a bitch and now that I run the Cheerios, my rep will stand no matter what. After watching out for you and getting to know you though, against my will most of the time but whatever, I came to kind of like you, Berry. Brittany says it's stronger than that and I know this all sounds really gay but I think that's really friggan moot and-" she cut off when she noticed Rachel was laughing.
She threw her an incredulous look and Rachel tried to smother her laugh. "I'm so sorry, Santana. I've just never had someone out-talk me, before. My declaration of love was very simple and precise whereas yours..."
"I was dealing with you here, Yoshi. I had to make this good or else you'd ramble on about not believing me or something equally ignorant."
Rachel's gaze moved from Santana's to the choir room door, where Mercedes and Tina were standing, smug expressions on their face. "We're being watched."
"What else is new?" Santana bit out, rolling her eyes and ignoring the gossip duo as she pulled Rachel in. When their mouths were an inch apart, Santana muttered, "This is too cliché." Rachel pulled back and smiled, offering her arm to Santana. Santana muttered something in broken Spanish and linked arms with Rachel, steering her down the hallway.
Santana and Rachel sauntered back into the choir room an hour later, ignoring the glares and smirks from their fellow gleeks. Santana's arm was slung across Rachel's waist, a familiar jacket hanging off of Rachel's shoulders. Mr. Schue was yelling something about a perfect machine and how it falls apart when parts of it were missing and not trying hard enough, but Santana ignored him as she steered her and Rachel to vacant chairs by Brittany, Puck, and Quinn.
Brittany beamed at Rachel as she whispered, "Did you two finally get over the river?"
Rachel threw Brittany a confused look when Quinn leaned in, "She means da nile."
Rachel blushed and Santana rolled her eyes, "You really are stuck in the 90's, aren't you Preggo?"
Quinn snapped back with some insult that Santana ignored because Rachel had intertwined their fingers on Santana's lap. Puck leaned down and sneered, "Getting close to Berry has made you soft. Where'd your hardness go, Lopez?"
Santana whispered back, "Into your pants tonight when you don't get laid, again."
Rachel swore Quinn snorted she was laughing so hard. Puck's hurt ego spoke for him, "Oh shut the hell up. Just because you're not giving it up to me anymore doesn't mean you'll be getting any."
Santana had the - the perfect insult on the tip of her tongue when she felt Rachel's breath on her ear, "Got Jews? Maybe you should stick with one specific brand. I think that would benefit us both." Santana sputtered and Rachel smiled.
Shocked that Rachel friggan Berry - granted, she was her girlfriend now, but still - had caught her so off guard, completely derailing her bitch train on purpose, Santana did the only thing she knew how to do in a moment like that. She turned around and pushed Puck's chair off of the risers.
Once everyone's attention had been placed back on Mr. Schue, Rachel stealthily leaned over and whispered into Santana's ear, "Mario went to great lengths to get Yoshi."
Santana rolled her eyes, "Yeah well, I think a hot ass Hispanic knight is a hell of a lot better than a little, pansy, Italian plumber."
Rachel shrugged, "To be honest, I always preferred Luigi to his shorter sibling. Maybe you could try wearing more green instead of red?"
Santana groaned, "I knew I was going to regret this."