Disclaimer: I own nothing. All belongs to Glee writers and creators.
A/N: This could be turned into a longer story, but I'm not going there right now until I have more of my other stories finished.
Prompt: "She's perfect because she is, in her own way, as damaged as me." – Dexter
God, it's been so long since I've killed someone.
It's unfortunate that this is my first thought when I feel the downy softness of one of the hotel room's pillows come down with a hard 'thwack' on the back of my chair—not to mention my back. The culprit could be any one of the girls behind me, squealing with sadistic joy as they beat each other senselessly with the harmless objects. Maybe they're trying to pull me into the fun. Though in some cases, I wouldn't be surprised if it was some petty form of revenge. Santana seems like the type to aim for the head. Probably Quinn then.
I shake it off and return to my work. Well, supposedly our work, but the girls seem more than pleased with the idea of letting me slave away while they engage in brutal activities that make them laugh until they fall down. Pillow fights. I don't get them.
I should probably be engaging, acting normal. I am, after all, supposedly the little schoolgirl here, not them, the ones who usually mock me for my childish behavior. Being around the massive group the entire day, keeping up that façade of high energy and even higher emotions, has left me exhausted, though, so I'm taking whatever reprieve I can get. Even if it does mean trying to pull another miracle like 'Get It Right' out of my empty heart.
The song is rightfully Quinn's, actually. If people had looked a little closer at the lyrics, maybe they would've seen that I was writing her pain, the pain she'd showed me, and not my own. I don't have much pain, really.
The last time I cried for real was when Shelby left me standing in the auditorium after we sang together. I wasn't really upset that she was treating me like an old ragdoll she'd found in her attic, free to play with as she liked. It didn't really matter to me. What upset me was just that—I didn't feel upset. I'd hoped that in reconnecting with my birth mother I could feel some…something. It's why I worked so hard at pretending I did. 'Fake it till you make it,' as my dads always told me.
They were even more disappointed than I was when her reappearance didn't do anything to change my condition. I guess they sort of gave up after that, because when she left, so did my therapist—for good. My dads sort of did, too, leaving me on my own for vacations and 'business trips' far more often than before. I guess it must hurt that they have a daughter who can't tell them she loves them and mean it. At least if I felt something for anyone, it would be them.
My cell phone vibrates and I sigh with some semblance of relief when I read the message. Finn wants me to go out with him; the opportunity couldn't be more golden. If I had to spend another second with these annoyingly loud and bouncy girls, I may have snapped and broken my standards completely.
I slip my phone back into my purse after tapping out a quick message and sneak over to my bag, making my escape into the bathroom shortly afterward. It's too bad I couldn't bring any of my toys with me. Tonight could have been ideal practice for when I move here. I've been itching to do it since I stepped foot off the plane, spying optimum targets all over the place.
This is why New York is perfect. Millions of people, so many unsolved murder cases. Practically absolute freedom. In Lima, it's so much harder to get rid of the bodies, and you have to be so much more careful. And killing more than once a year is a rookie's mistake. People think small town cops are idiots, but really, the smaller the town, the closer the scrutiny. New York has a million and one criminals, people like me. I could blend in here.
Of course, my plans are to stand out, but Broadway is all part of it. Fame is freedom; it means no one is watching you for anything but drugs and a scandalous affair here or there, and even then your punishment will be light, if it comes at all. Quinn is right to think popularity is everything—she's just wrong about where it counts. High school is four years; fame is forever, which is why I focus on ambition rather than reputation.
It helps that I rather enjoy singing. It's a peaceful, pleasing activity. Sometimes I even feel normal when I do it.
The acting is dull, but only because it's something I already do every day. I might overcompensate a little, but the fact that I act so emotional that it annoys people puts them off and keeps their focus off of me. I'm too aggravating to even think about, and it's perfect. Except for with Finn.
I never intended to get so tangled with the boy. He started out as one of my targets, after months of observation of his relationship with Quinn. Quinn was damaged. I could see the telltale signs of insecurity; she tried to hide it by overcompensating with cruelty toward those who appeared comfortable and happy in their lives, like me, hating her own, hating herself. Her every action screamed of abuse. Whether emotional or physical or both, it didn't matter to me, but I picked the boyfriend as suspect number one.
It may have been a snap judgment on my part, looking at him and seeing only the size of him, seeing how easily he could overpower a girl if he really wanted to, even a girl who had obviously had so much fire in her before her spirit was crushed, like Quinn.
It was only when I'd gotten closer to both him and Quinn that I realized one very important thing: Finn Hudson was too innocent to be abusive. Deep down he was still a child, prone to taking his temper out on chairs and wanting toys the other boys were playing with. But I had also realized something else: he wasn't good enough for perfection personified—Quinn.
I thought after I had told him the true paternity of her child it would be enough to keep him away for good, so I wasn't too bothered when he left me to 'find his inner rock star.' Actually it amused me, even if only for a moment. My dalliance—or, rather, ploy to grab Finn's attention away from Quinn—with Noah had convinced me that he would take good care of Quinn for the duration of her pregnancy while I focused on a new target, the one I'd been looking for all along: Russell Fabray.
When Jesse St. James, my kindred spirit in so many ways, came along, we played with him together, mixing him up with a 'tattooed freak' by the name of Lindy—a reliable little con artist—to pry his death grip away from Judy and set her free, isolate him from his community so his death would be shrugged at rather than obsessed over. Things admittedly went a little sour between Jesse and I when he realized my…fascination with Quinn, but I was sad to see him go nonetheless.
Getting together with Finn was insurance that he wouldn't bother with Quinn again, as was pushing Sam to the newly unattached Quinn's side when I saw Finn's attention start to stray back. Sam was a good boy; he could keep Quinn happy, though he would never be good enough. He would never be able to see, to understand how truly broken she was, not like I could. With the lack of abusive relationships in her life, the wreckage may have faded into scars with time, but the pregnancy had left a mark on her that could not be erased, like so many other wounds she bore. Like me.
My social ineptness showed its true colors during the Santana-Noah fiasco. I took my cue from those around me when Santana spilled the truth. I was supposed to be a heartbroken mess, pathetic enough to even allow a player to take advantage of my vulnerable state. Truth be told, I was relieved when the boy found himself unable to go any farther. I wasn't sure I could make myself aroused enough for him, and while the 25-year-rule worked wonders on an actual boyfriend, a one night stand might not have been quite so understanding.
In any case, Finn's demand for honesty quite confused me when he about-turned and broke up with me for it. I spent weeks puzzling over his contradictory reaction before I realized that all my insurance, all my hard work, had gone to waste. He was taking what he didn't deserve, and I worked to thieve him back for weeks. When that didn't work, my attention went to Quinn, even going so far as to drag her along to a doctor's appointment for that ridiculous nose injury, trying to befriend her and work her away from the boy. I worked on Finn again when it looked as though she might be cheating with the boy I had initially picked for her, but every try was met with failure. Jesse's return was a stroke of luck, but not even that gave them a hard enough push apart.
It was beyond frustrating. Her slap across my face was liberating for both of us, waking me up to the important things I had been ignoring. I delayed with her father no more that night.
Sue Sylvester's sister's funeral was a lucky turn in more ways than one for me. A distraction for the community from the missing church-goer. Finn's rejection of my perfectly damaged goods. I was all too pleased to find him straying away from Quinn on his own, away from what he does not deserve.
If I have to get back together with him to keep him from her, I will, even if it means my good friend Jesse abandoning me for good. Finn's company is…at least tolerable, if not occasionally amusing. But he will not keep me from coming here, the only place I will ever belong, and he will not be taking what he does not deserve once I leave again. No matter what I have to do to make sure of it.
I glance into the room one more time before I'll sneak out into the fresh air, bracing myself for Finn's bumbling attempts to romance my heartless self. Quinn catches sight of me and scowls, her hard eyes making contact with mine for a moment, showcasing the hurt she feels, but I only smile. I'm not sorry for all the things she's blaming me for, and not only because I don't have feelings.
Quinn has to be protected. I won't ever apologize for doing just that.