Happy Valentines Day Fabray! (Berry, Lopez and Pierce as well)
Quinn made a concerted effort not to laugh as Santana slowly and deliberately removed the banana mash from her face. She maintained a malevolent glare the entire time, although the Quidditch player had found that as the years passed it became less and less threatening. Not that she would tell her hot headed friend that anytime soon! Especially as once she knew, Santana would then try her best to come up with something suitably intimidating. Clearing her throat slightly Quinn rubbed the back of her neck and not so helpfully commented.
"I did tell you that they would mash with little effort, the secret of a good banana cake is to have the bananas ever so slightly over ripe, more flavour that way."
Raising a dark eyebrow Santana closed her eyes and counted very slowly to ten, when she opened them the Harpies seeker was still watching her with mild amusement.
"Why the hell do we have to do this the muggle way anyway! We're witches Fabray isn't doing this the hard way masochistic or something?"
Huffing another sigh and resigning herself to the fact that, just as she had suspected earlier Santana hadn't listened to a word she'd said!
"S, come on…we have been through this before! Food tastes better if it's made by hand, there's just something missing when you use magic."
She swiped at her forehead with the back of a hand leaving a smear of flour as she pondered that particular conundrum once more. She wasn't so pre occupied however that she didn't miss the Latina grimacing as she tried to remove more of the mashed banana from her hair.
"Yeah, the freaking mess is what's missing!"
Rolling her eyes Quinn glanced at the clock and wished that Rachel would hurry up and get home with Brittany. At first the idea of a shared Valentine's meal was a great one, none of the four of them were exactly rolling in galleons yet. Santana was still training to be an Auror and as such was on an apprentices wages. Brittany was also strictly speaking still in an apprentice role as she had been working with both Rachel's father's as they trained her up. Rachel was the closest of them all to being rich as she had signed a book deal for her very first novel aimed at older children. Even that though was taking it's time and as most of the money came from the actual book sales she would have to wait until it was officially released. They were still testing it with various focus groups to iron out the creases and Rachel and Quinn had used the majority of the advance to put the deposit on their cottage.
Quinn currently earned the most out of all them, especially as she had a permanent position on the team now. The first year she had been strictly a reserve who filled in when any of the main players was out with injury etc. At the start of this year's Quidditch season however Ginny and the rest of the team had put her through so many practices she was performing moves in flight that should theoretically be impossible, and as such had been given the position of seeker. She and Rachel had brought their little two bed cottage on the outskirts of Taunton, Somerset and when they had spare time they divided it between Rachel's fathers and Quinn's grams. They weren't rich, they weren't famous but they were ridiculously happy, Brit and San were in the same boat only they preferred the city life and so had a flat in London.
They regularly met up for meals at least twice a month at one or the other's homes and it was at one of these gatherings that Brittany had first floated the idea of the four of them celebrating Valentines day together. As the taller blonde had pointed out, it saved money for all of them but meant they still got to celebrate. After seeing how eager Rachel was Quinn had agreed and offered her own and Santana's services as the chef's. The Latina hadn't been quite as pleased with that part of the plan as that meant that Rachel and Brit would be in charge of the evenings entertainment. After much grumbling and some competition grade sulking the Latina had agreed, after all how much trouble would it be to whip up a magical feast? A lot apparently as Quinn had insisted that when it came to cooking you had to do everything the muggle way because it just tasted better. Having rarely cooked without the aid of magic Santana did not agree at all and when Quinn had whipped her wand out of her hand and hidden it as soon as she turned up, it almost caused the third Wizarding war.
Instead the trainee Auror had satisfied herself with simply chasing Quinn around the small cottage repeatedly as she tried to grab at her wand that the Quidditch player had effectively disappeared. While she didn't succeed in this endeavour they did manage between them to smash the coffee table, take two doors off the hinges, collapse both sofa's and blast the contents of the fireplace all over the living room hearth. Looking at the wake of devastation they had left behind them they came to a silent agreement to use magic to tidy that at least. It wouldn't do for their respective better halves to come back and find out that they were eating pizza because the afternoon had been spent cleaning ash off of the antique rug Rachel had fallen in love with. Santana brought Quinn sharply back to the present as she asked distractedly.
"So what did you get mighty mouse for Valentines day then?"
Frowning as she tasted the vegetable soup carefully and determining whether or not it needed any more seasoning, the Quidditch player scratched at her 'Han Solo' chin scar.
"Hmm, oh you'll just have to wait and see, don't worry I severely doubt that we thought of the same gift…come and taste this I'm not sure if it needs more herbs or not?"
Walking over obligingly the Latina sipped from the spoon that Quinn had just rinsed and re-filled. Raising an impressed eyebrow Santana licked her lips and after a moments deliberation shook her head.
"I don't think so Q, it tastes just about right to me, how come it tastes so damn good I mean that's the same recipe I use right?"
Grinning happily and maybe if she were honest just a tad smugly, the Quidditch player shrugged her shoulders.
"This is what I mean by it tastes better, with magic it just follows the recipe, if you do it yourself you get to add the subtle nuances that just kick it up a notch."
Rolling her eyes and willing herself not to face palm loudly for asking, the Latina just huffed and went back to where she was mixing the mashed banana with sugar, flour and eggs. Quinn turned back to the soup and added a discreet pinch of paprika anyway when something occurred to her, eyes widening she turned to where Santana was cursing as she tried to get the blender working.
"S, don't forget to…!"
With a triumphant yell the Latina found the on button and stabbed it viciously drowning out the last of Quinn's warning…and promptly sending the sweet and incredibly sticky mixture splattering all over the kitchen walls, both witches and interestingly enough the ceiling. With a panicked yelp Santana managed to hit the power switch again to kill the blender, from behind her the blonde trailed off weakly.
"…put the lid on."
Pulling a face she plucked a gloop of floury banana off of the crown of her head and sighed wearily. It was on the tip of her tongue to chastise the trainee Auror when she registered the hint of malevolence in the dark brown eyes scowling at her. Swallowing, the Quidditch player held her other hand out calmingly.
"Now…it's just a small setback I'm sure if we clean up it will only take a few minutes to remix the batter for the cake…um, S…you realise if you drown me in the soup Brit will be upset right?"
Closing her eyes again Santana counted to twenty this time, well actually she got as far as fifteen before a snort of laughter made them fly open again. Quinn was bright red with the effort it was taking to keep her laughter inside, in her defence, the sight of the bad ass Auror in training dripping with mashed banana, raw egg and with one side of her face white from flour was just too amusing to ignore.
"I…sorry but…if you had any idea how ridiculous you look right now S…"
Eventually the laughter just rushed out in loud staccato bursts, at first Santana just looked at her friend stunned, she only looked like this because of Quinn's insistence on doing things the muggle way! Mouth straightening in a thin line the Latina picked up the blender cup and stalking towards Quinn who was rolling around in fits she waited until the most opportune moment and dumped the remainder of the contents on top of the short blonde hair with a satisfied grin. Shrieking and leaping to her feet Quinn glared back angrily at her smirking friend.
"Why did you do that?"
Folding her arms the Latina assumed an uncannily accurate impersonation of the Quidditch players voice.
"You should see how ridiculous you look Q."
Two set's of eyes narrowed, one hazel and one dark brown…oh it was so on now!
In a small department store in the nearest city Brittany was holding up a board game called Clue with a questioning look.
"What about this one? There's no money involved so S and Q shouldn't try and kill each other, well hopefully anyway!"
Rachel smiled and took the box from her to read it over, truthfully she was a little worried about leaving the two friends together to do the cooking. It wasn't that they fought as much per se but they still had a very active sense of competition. Brittany had reassured her however that there wouldn't be any issues with misbehaviour as Santana knew she would end up on the sofa if there was. Smiling brightly Rachel had agreed that was a tremendous idea and had therefore offered the same ultimatum to Quinn who had pouted but agreed with a grumble. Reading over the instructions for Clue the little brunette sighed and placed it back on the shelf before shrugging when Brittany tilted her head questioningly.
"Let's just say that I don't feel like tempting fate by buying a board game about murder, admittedly we are meant to be solving the murder but I think something less, well…murder ish altogether is safer."
Chuckling slightly Brittany nodded an easy agreement and they went back to perusing the titles that lined the display. They had already discounted, Monopoly (Santana didn't understand muggle money) Trivial Pursuit (only Quinn had enough general knowledge of muggle life to have a chance at winning) and Game of Life (the thought of parenthood, even board game parenthood freaked both the Quidditch player and Auror out). By this point they were coming to the end of the line…until Brittany smiled brightly and picked up a very bright coloured box marked Twister.
"What about this one?"
Taking the box from her friend Rachel examined the back and grinned slightly at the idea of three of them trying to play this without either falling flat on their faces or bursting into hysterical laughter.
"I think this is the one Brit, even those two cant get overly competitive with this!"
As they moved over towards the pay desk and joined the queue, the writer flipped her hair over her shoulder and glanced at the healing burns on Brittany's hands with a sympathetic wince.
"I take it the dragonlings are coming along in leaps and bounds then?"
Smiling happily the blonde nodded enthusiastically.
"Yeah, they're so cute at this age as well, I mean, yeah, they do sort of lose control of themselves but they cant help it, I mean they're only just learning what they can do. Your dads are awesome as well, every time something new comes along, an opportunity that they know I could learn from they contact me straight away. San doesn't like it so much when we're in bed and that owl of yours falls through or more often into, the window of the flat, but I'm learning so much!"
Rachel couldn't help but grin at her friends enthusiasm, and she knew from a few things she had overheard her fathers say that the blonde was learning fast. She had a natural affinity for the animals and never lost her temper when bitten, scratched or burnt, intrinsically understanding that they couldn't help their nature.
"They think you're pretty awesome as well Brit, I'm glad you are enjoying your work though. That's one thing I think we have all been blessed with since leaving Hogwarts. Santana definitely enjoys her work and I know Quinn does, sometimes it's mission impossible to get her to come home!"
Smiling happily Brittany nodded in agreement.
"Yeah but it must be awesome now she's actually on the team roster permanently, I've been buying the chocolate snitches just to try and get the collector card of her, it's her first proper one, I thought I could get her to sign it for me."
Laughing softly at her friends enthusiasm she shook her head slightly.
"You do know that if you asked her she would just find one for you and you wouldn't have to buy all that chocolate in order to find it."
Tapping her chin thoughtfully the blonde shrugged and smiled happily.
"Yes but as I also love the chocolate and it's a perfect excuse to keep buying it I really don't mind. Besides it's more fun to try and find them, like buying a small present for yourself each lunch time."
Wondering yet again at the amazing way her friends mind worked Rachel realised with a start that she was next up to pay and with careful deliberation extracted the right note from her purse. Moments later they were walking back down the high street towards the bus, Rachel had been trying to immerse herself more and more into muggle life as her publisher had both magical and muggle world links and the book was indeed due to be released for both. However, before going home they decided a quick trip to Diagon Alley was in order, or to be more accurate a trip to Honeyduke's to stock up on chocolate frogs, snitches and lord knows what else. It was Valentines day after all and there was no better excuse to indulge one's sweet tooth.
The magical street was flooded with people buying last minute presents for their loved ones and it made Rachel pleased that she had thought of Quinn's present just after Christmas. There was the little extra of course but that wasn't strictly speaking a Valentines gift, glancing over at Brittany she double checked that the blonde had sorted her valentines gift as well.
"Do you need to go anywhere other than Honeyduke's? what did you decide to get S in the end."
Tearing her eyes away from a display of pygmy puffs in the window of Weasley's Wizard Wheezes to answer.
"Hmm? Oh, yeah! I wasn't sure what on earth to get her but that book shop you recommended turned out to be a goldmine. I found a book on werewolves written by Remus Lupin and a book of illustrated common counter curses, and of course the one on dirty tricks for Auror's in a tight spot. That should keep her quiet this evening if the board game doesn't prove distracting enough."
Rachel chuckled and lay a hand on Brit's shoulder squeezing happily and glad she could help. Both of them couldn't help but stop as they passed the window of 'Quality Quidditch Supplies' because there was a huge poster of the years hottest new players. And sure enough on the far left side was her Quinn, flushing slightly with that crooked grin while she rubbed the back of her neck. The brunette authors grin grew wider as she realised she got to go home to that woman every night. Brittany rolled her eyes fondly and nudged her friend with her shoulder.
"Come on you, the last thing you need is a poster of your fiancée, especially when you know it would freak Quinn out. For someone who loves the game she's awfully shy of the publicity that comes with it."
Rachel sighed dreamily at the poster then forced herself to move on and try and ignore Brittany's chuckling. It was true that as much as Quinn loved to play, loved the exhibition games and team photos, she hated to be interviewed or pictured on her own. She was so convinced she would make an idiot of herself that she ended up uttering very hurried answers. Unfortunately for her, the fans thought it was cute and loved her even more for it which just encouraged them to approach her. Luckily her team mates were slightly protective of their withdrawn new seeker and tended to head off any awkward questions for her. There weren't many and most of them revolved, of course, around her parents, at which point one of the more experienced players would always sweep forwards and pull the stuttering blonde into a hug claiming they were her family. Quinn would nod happily and agree, occasionally she would mention her grams in interviews but more often than not she just evaded the questions. Not that she lacked a family anymore, in fact between Rachel's fathers, her team mates and her Grams she felt overly blessed if anything.
"Oh you know Quinn, she's always been a little stumbling when it comes to any sort of public speaking. Despite that huge Ravenclaw brain and incredible Quidditch playing physique…"
Rachel trailed off as she thought about that particular physique and what she planned to do with it later that night. Right up until she felt a sharp elbow in her ribs and caught Brittany's half amused, half exasperated grin. Flushing slightly the author pushed her way into Honeyduke's and decided it would be more conducive to keep her mind on current activities and not future ones…especially when in public. It took half an hour to navigate their way through the busy sweet store, pick their purchases and finally pay for them. Back on the street with their bulging bags the two checked the time and decided to find a quiet spot from which to Apparate back to the cottage.
"I wonder what they've cooked up between them? It's not that I don't trust Santana but the last time she tried to cook something for me the building was evacuated."
Rachel chuckled slightly and tried to reassure her friend.
"Don't worry, Quinn spends a lot of time with my daddy learning how to cook and she's actually really good now, though she does prefer to do it all by hand rather than use magic to help."
That little bit of information made the hairs on the back of Brittany's neck stand up slightly and she felt a sudden sense of dread. Although Santana wasn't a muggle hater by any stretch of the imagination she did try to avoid doing things the muggle way. In her opinion she was born a witch so why wouldn't she use her magic?
"Um Rachel, I don't want to worry you but S hates doing things the muggle way when she doesn't have to, just how insistent is Quinn when it comes to cooking?"
The brown eyes of her little friend widened and she swallowed slightly as she turned to Brittany, suddenly sharing her friends nervousness.
"She flat out refuses to use magic for cooking…I'm thinking we should definitely get home now though, although…they wouldn't fight over something as stupid as cooking methods would they, I mean they're older and wiser right?"
Brittany opened her mouth to reassure Rachel but then a flash of New Year's Eve just gone by played out in her brain. The two explosive friends had been getting steadily drunker as the evening wore on and as usual the subject of the Quidditch cup final came up. Santana still insisted to this day (more because it riled Quinn than through any sense of actual belief) that it was luck that had gotten Ravenclaw the cup. The gentle bantering turned to loud arguing and inevitably a challenge, so at half one in the morning all four women plus their families and guests had found themselves at the Harpies training ground for a fierce game of one on one.
A game which ended when Ginny, the Captain who had been alerted to people in the training ground by security, showed up. Unfortunately it had been just as the two hot heads managed to collide into each other and the goal hoops, effectively breaking all three of them and collapsing on the ground in a pile of giggles and broken broomsticks. That little stunt had ended in Quinn and Santana having to repair and tend to the ruined training ground while nursing hangovers from hell. With that in mind Brittany grimaced slightly and turned back to Rachel who, judging by the look in her eyes, had just visited the same memory.
"I think we need to get home, as in five minutes ago."
Without any more hesitation the two of them Apparated back to the little cottage hoping against hope that their girlfriends hadn't wrecked anything. They emerged in the living room and all seemed quiet at first, both women took a quick look around the living room and it all seemed in order. In fact, if anything it seemed cleaner than it had that morning, that in itself was suspicious but so long as the peace was being kept Rachel was happy to accept it. There was a delightful smell coming from the kitchen and the two relaxed…right up until they heard the angry grunt they both recognised as Quinn's.
"Get your fat ass off my head Lopez!"
There was a slight crash and then a yelp before Santana growled back, just as miffed.
"Not until you give me my damn wand back Fabray, hand it over and I'll move!"
Looking at each other wearily Rachel and Brittany released stereo sighs of exasperation and marched through to the kitchen…and apparently into something from a Saturday morning children's TV show involving gunge and assault courses.
What in the name of Merlin's robes have you done to my kitchen!"
Rachel's voice came out slightly higher pitched than she wanted it to but seriously…there was some sort of liquid goop hanging off of the light fitting and covering the two witches on the floor who seemed to be tied together in some sort of human pretzel. Santana had managed to gain the upper hand by sitting on Quinn's head but the blonde had a firm hold of the Latina's arms so she couldn't move them, it was a clear deadlock. They glanced at each other and then their girlfriends before starting to speak hurriedly at the same time.
"She started freaking out because she messed up with the mixer, which wouldn't have happened if she had stopped to listen, but no, as usual Santana freaking Lopez knows everything and doesn't have to listen to anyone!"
That all came out in a muffled stream from Quinn at the same time as the Latina spouted her own explanation.
"Fabray's being some freaky ass psycho about not using magic to help with cooking which is just stupid because we're witches and we have magic for a reason! Its hardly my fault I don't know how to use these stupid muggle devices!"
Rachel opened her mouth to speak but Quinn's hot retort steam-rolled over her effortlessly.
"Well if you would stop being such an ass and listen for five seconds instead of rushing ahead…or better yet just ask if you aren't sure, then we wouldn't be in this mess, now would we!"
Again, the diminutive writer cleared her throat and tried to intervene, again she was overridden, this time by the Latina.
"Perhaps if you weren't being such a freaking weirdo then this wouldn't have happened! But no everyone has to do it your way don't they!"
Quinn drew breath to carry on the argument, Rachel drew breath to once again try to interrupt, but it was Brittany who shut the arguing chef's up with a sharp piercing whistle that actually hurt all their ears. When she was sure she had both Quinn and Santana's attention she glared in a rarely used and therefore extremely effective way.
"That is ENOUGH! From both of you, Santana get off of Quinn, Quinn get up off the floor! Now…it's safe to say that both of you are sleeping on the couch tonight after this display, and do NOT argue!"
Both Santana and Quinn abruptly closed their mouths which had opened to argue their case. The Latina scowled heavily and crossed her arms while the Quidditch player shoved her hands in her back jeans pockets and pouted down at her converse. Satisfied they would be quiet for a moment she turned to Rachel who was looking round at the mess in their kitchen with a stunned expression.
"Rachel and I are going to leave now and head to the spa, hopefully after a massage and a soak in the hot tub we can forget this…appalling mess the two of you have made and when we return we can actually sit down and have the civilised dinner that we were supposed to have!"
Shaking herself slightly to focus on the conversation and not the mess, Rachel nodded in agreement and stepping forward held her hand out.
"And to solve any arguments I will be taking both your wands."
As Quinn reached inside her shirt and pulled them from the magical pocket she mumbled an apology. Santana just rolled her eyes and determined to stay sulking, she was after all in the right, when something occurred to her.
"Hey…wait up, if you take those then how are we supposed to clean up in here and cook the meal?"
Smiling pleasantly it was Brittany who answered, still in the calm yet controlled voice.
"Hmm, well let's think about that shall we? Quinn seems to love the muggle way of doing things so she can teach you, and after the mess that you are partly responsible for I think it's only fair you do it as well!"
Rachel accepted the wands and hid them away in her coat before turning to Brittany and smiling pleasantly, suddenly the idea of a massage, hot tub and perhaps some time in the steam room seemed like the perfect idea, she offered her arm to the blonde who gratefully linked hers through it.
"Come on Brittany, let's leave the children to clean up their mess shall we?"
Smiling back happily she waved her own wand and snatched the two wallets she had just magiced out of their girlfriends pocket's, out of the air. There were twin cries of surprise and the very beginnings of protestations before two sharp gazes pinned them.
"I think that's a great idea, and as they are treating us maybe we can also fit in a manicure."
With a sharp crack the two of them Apparated away again leaving two very stunned and (if they cared to admit it, chastised) witches stood in the kitchen covered in the ingredients for banana cake. Quinn licked absently at the blob of sugar on her upper lip and glanced at Santana.
"Wow…Brittany really knows how to yell when she needs too huh?"
Blinking slightly Santana turned to her friend and smiled slightly at the random spikes that were sticking out in all angles from her short blonde hair.
"Yeah, it's actually kinda hot…unless she's yelling at me that is. Well, if we are going to stand any chance of worming our way back into our respective bedrooms tonight then I suppose we should clean this crap up…and finish cooking."
As usual the two of them started getting the giggles once the stress of the actual fight had evaporated, and with Brittany yelling at them in a very McGonagall like way it did indeed feel very much like the scrapes they used to get into at school. As a result the big tidy they had to do ended up being full of laughter and reminiscence, it was always the way between the two of them, that was one thing that hadn't changed since Hogwarts, and probably never would. Only an hour later and they had the soup ready to just be warmed along with the bread that Santana had made with Quinn's help. To follow there was a roast leg of lamb for S, Q and Brit and a carefully prepared mushroom and Quorn mince parcel for Rachel. On the third attempt they had actually managed to finish the banana cake and it was topped with whipped cream and a banana style custard filling. It was standing nicely on the side. Standing back and regarding their work critically (in a sparkling clean kitchen) Quinn held her hand out for a fist bump, grinning Santana obligingly tapped her knuckles to the Quidditch players and they collapsed gratefully onto the sofa's with a Butterbeer.
"So Q, have you and the house elf made any definitive plans when it comes to your wedding yet? I mean you have been engaged like two years now! At this rate me and Brit will tie the knot before you do."
Taking a swig of the pleasantly cool Butterbeer in her hand Quinn shrugged awkwardly and murmured something too low for Santana to hear. A dark eyebrow rose and the Latina leaned forward.
"You might want to use a decibel or two there Q?"
Sighing the Quidditch player ran her free hand through her hair in frustration before letting it fall back to her leg with a thud.
"I'm just…nervous, I mean I don't want the press to turn up because I'm going to be nervous enough, but at the same time I don't want to appear to be so private that it seems like I'm stuck up. Also there's the matter of…well, you know, my parents."
Santana narrowed her eyes and made a conscious effort to relax her grip on the bottle in her hands. Two years later and even the thought of those weak willed bigoted idiots was enough to raise her blood pressure.
"Q, no offence but they're out of your life now, why do you care what they think?"
Picking at the label on her bottle distractedly the blonde blew out a breath and shrugged a shoulder listlessly.
"I know they made it clear they didn't want me San, but they're my parents you know, and getting married is something I feel like I should let them in on. I know they wont care or even show up but…I don't want to not invite them."
Sipping her Butterbeer slowly to take the time to control her response Santana thought carefully. Personally she couldn't understand why Quinn cared about them anymore but then again she was from a really close family so the Quidditch players situation was completely alien to her. Heaving a sigh she reached out and hesitantly lay a hand on her friends shoulder.
"If you want to invite them then talk to Rachel, talk to your grams and see what they think? Rach because she needs to be involved and your Grams because she's kick ass, and also she knows her daughter and son in law better than any of us."
Smiling slightly Quinn nodded and looked down at her feet wondering idly about buying a new pair of converse in Harpies green.
"I guess that could work, what about the publicity thing though?"
The Latina snorted.
"That ones obvious you giant dork! Lauren works at the Prophet now, you're inviting her anyway so offer her an exclusive, it will help her career and you know the person covering the wedding wont try and put any sort of spin on it."
Slapping a hand to her forehead loudly Quinn rolled her eyes at her own idiocy.
"I'd forgotten she works there, what would I do without you S?"
Quirking her lips slightly the Latina took another sip of beer before answering casually.
"Well, in bed with your lover tonight instead of sleeping on the sofa for a start!"
Groaning faintly Quinn drained the last of her beer and mock glared at her best friend before getting up to fetch them both a refill.
"Ugh, don't remind me, we're going to have to work on charming them this evening and hopefully we can worm our way back into the bedroom. Separate ones of course!"
At the hastily spoken addendum Santana snorted again and blurted.
"Oh Merlin yes! Can you imagine the four of us in the same bed?"
At that point a weird silence fell, as soon as she'd spoken she knew that it was a mistake as unbidden the both of them did just that…imagined all four of them in the same bed. There were two identical flushes of embarrassment and Quinn murmured something about the kitchen before heading that way hurriedly. At the exact same time that Santana shot upright and decided she needed to use the bathroom. For the sake of both their sanity's Rachel and Brittany returned before they had to finish up their distraction techniques. If either of their girlfriends thought there was anything odd about the way Quinn and Santana hugged them they put it down to being forced to clean and cook together. San and Brit took refuge in the living room flipping through the TV channels with interest while Rachel and Quinn retreated to the dining room to make sure the table was set.
"I'm amazed you two managed to work together so well, the cake looks amazing, something even my dad would be envious of and he's the best baker I know!"
Quinn smiled proudly as she lay the cutlery around the table, picking up a heart shaped name card she raised an eyebrow and Rachel smiled shyly.
"It's our first dinner party, I wanted to do it right, plus, I thought it would be kind of sweet?"
Shaking her head slightly Quinn moved round the table and wrapped her arms round the writers waist from behind pulling her close enough to prop her chin on a shoulder.
"You are just too cute Rachel Berry, I'm sorry about earlier, you know how me and San can get if we're left alone supervised."
Rolling her eyes and turning around within the embrace so she could loop her arms round the Quidditch players neck, Rachel shook her head fondly.
"You two are impossible! I swear that even at the age of eighty Brittany and I are going to be having to pull you two apart to stop you fighting over the same rocking chair."
Grinning abashedly Quinn found herself confessing that even she and Santana had come to that conclusion while they were cleaning the kitchen earlier. Reaching up on her tiptoes to steal a sweet kiss Rachel rested her forehead on Quinn's.
"What else did you talk about while we were gone?"
Blushing a bright red as she remembered the very last thing that had been the topic of conversation between the two old friends, Quinn cleared her throat and decided to stick to the previous conversation.
"Well she asked me about the wedding actually and why we hadn't set a date, I sort of…told her it was partly my fear of the press ya know? Knowing they want to be there and so not wanting to pi…uh annoy them by making it private."
The writer nodded as this was something they had discussed before when Rachel's fathers had made the same innocent enquiry.
"Then Santana pointed out something that was really obvious and made me feel like a bit of an idiot for not realising it myself. Lauren works at the Prophet and we were inviting her anyway, offer her an exclusive which helps her career and we have a journalist we trust…what do you think?"
Rachel flushed slightly as she had also forgotten that, grinning slightly however she nodded enthusiastically.
"I think that's a wonderful idea love…did you tell her the other thing that was bothering you?"
Nodding reluctantly she pulled Rachel a little closer to her and sighed into the cinnamon and vanilla scented hair heavily.
"Yeah, she doesn't know why I want to invite them and I guess I can why but the fact is I cant help it. I'd feel bad if I failed to invite them but then I'd also feel bad if they did turn up and ruined our big day…I'm conflicted and it's making my head hurt. All I want is to stand up in front of our friends and family to tell everyone what you mean to me and that I know we're going to be together forever."
Tilting her head enough to press a kiss to the Quidditch players forehead Rachel looked thoughtful for a moment before speaking.
"Well, maybe you should just invite them and see what happens, then you are at peace with your conscience because you issued the invite. If they choose to ignore it then they choose to ignore it. It wont change how much we love each other or detract from the special feeling of the day. And I'm sure Puck and Finn would be willing to escort them out if they did turn up with the intention of causing trouble, though I have to say I doubt your father would try anything after his last encounter with magic."
Quinn nodded soberly at that, she hadn't really thought of it that way. Then again she should know by now that the thoughts she had that seemed so tangled and erratic in her own head always seemed to make sense when she confided them to Rachel. Smiling brightly she stole one last kiss and then pulled back to double check the table.
"In that case we sit down tomorrow and set a date, I want to marry you Rachel Berry and I'm going to da…um, blooming well do it!"
Trying not to laugh at the way that, even now, two years after leaving Hogwarts Quinn would always make an effort to curb her swearing in front of her. The tiny brunette glanced down at the sparkling engagement ring the Quidditch player had given her the night of their leaving ball.
"I'm ready whenever you are Quinn Fabray, I always have been and I always will be."
A gagging noise came from the direction of the door followed by the muffled thump of a hand impacting the back of a head and a muffled curse. Santana emerged from the doorway rubbing the back of her head followed by a fondly smiling Brittany. Scowling slightly the Latina murmured as she looked at their smirking friends.
"Stop grinning like a couple of demented gargoyles! If you have finished with all the mushy crap some of us are hungry."
Despite the grumpy façade they could both see the poorly concealed excitement at the idea of a date finally being set, sparkling in Santana's brown eyes. Rolling her own hazel ones Quinn moved towards the kitchen making sure to 'accidentally' nudge the brunettes shoulder with a smirk. Losing the scowl Santana smirked back and made an effort to try and trip the Quidditch player, up until she realised Rachel and Brit were looking at the two of them disapprovingly again. Quinn insisted that the others sit and she would serve, the soup was vegetable and completely vegan friendly as was the bread. Once the food was on the table conversation turned to mutual topics such as how everyone else from their graduating year was doing.
Kurt had gone into fashion and like Rachel was spanning both worlds, his muggle shop was based in London and his magical one was in both Diagon Alley and Hogsmeade. He insisted that one of the worst things about Hogwarts was the fact that for any official event such as dances if you were very limited for last minute fashions. Turns out he was right as business was booming in all three locations. He was living with Blaine who had pursued his career on the stage and was currently an understudy for a show in London about witches or some such thing. Finn had also gone into professional Quidditch and was a reserve player for the Cannons, Puck was working security inside the ministry and finally dating Lauren. Sam was studying to become a professor at Hogwarts teaching Quidditch as Madame Hooch was approaching retirement. Tina and Mike had been snatched up by the research department at the Ministry of Magic and were incredibly busy.
The second course went down even better than the first one and by this point the conversation was back on the wedding that was now very definitely forthcoming. Santana swallowed her mouthful and glanced over at the Quidditch player who was talking animatedly about how the team would be so pleased that she finally set a date. A tiny twinge of jealousy shot through her as she considered the possibility that the blonde would jump at the chance to have Ginny by her side at the altar instead of her. Clearing her throat she decided to test the waters, subtly of course so she spoke to Rachel instead.
"So, have you given any thoughts to who you want as bridesmaids then midget? I mean I'm assuming you will take on the more feminine role given Fabray's man shoulders."
Quinn frowned and tried to look at her shoulders without actually looking like she was looking at them, the result was an odd kind of twisted spasm. Rachel rolled her eyes and resisted the urge to flick a pea at the smirking Latina.
"yes, actually Santana I have and I would be delighted if Brittany would agree to be my chief bridesmaid?"
She looked over to her friend who clapped her hands together happily and jumped up and down in her seat giggling.
"Yes! I'd love to Rachel, wow thank you…who else are you going to ask?"
The brunette smiled widely.
"Well Kurt would never forgive me if I didn't ask him and Blaine so they will be my unconventional brides men, and of course will be designing our dresses."
Quinn was well aware that Santana was fishing and although a part of her would have loved to string her hot headed friend along a bit she sighed internally and glanced over at the Latina. She was slicing another chunk of lamb off before dipping it into the mint sauce and seemingly oblivious to the conversation.
"So…I mean it's a contradiction in terms and you're not actually male but I was hoping that you might be my best man San?"
The Latina tried not to grin outright but it was a losing battle and so she decided to hell with it. Smirking widely she finished her mouthful, washing it down with more Butterbeer and nodded.
"I guess someone is going to have to stop you from freaking out an forgetting the vows, or losing the rings."
Nodding solemnly the blonde picked up her bottle of Butterbeer and they looked at each other for a long moment before grinning like loons and clicking the bottles together in a toast. The rest of the meal went by even more pleasantly with Rachel and Quinn discussing the colour schemes they could go with, and Santana and Brittany floating various location ideas. By the time the cake was brought in along with the cream, coffee and of course tea for Quinn they had whittled it down to two different ones. Rachel's fathers cottage as they could use the field outside for a reception and the party, or the one they preferred but weren't sure they would be allowed which was the Quidditch pitch at Hogwarts. With full bellies and mugs of their favoured hot beverage the four of them trooped into the lounge and Santana looked at the box for twister with a dubious expression.
"Okay…this looks several different kinds of difficult, not to mention hands and faces could end up in certain places they aren't meant to be."
Quinn snorted in amusement and raised a challenging eyebrow.
"What's the matter Lopez, you not up to the challenge?"
Downing what was left in her mug with a stare that refused to back down the Latina rolled her sleeves up meaningfully and started to lay out the mat. Brittany read through the instructions and raised an amused eyebrow.
"Okay, one of us needs to be the spinner and doesn't have to get squashed by the others on the mat, does anyone want to…"
Rachel shot up and took the spinner from the surprised blondes hands.
"I'm spinner! No offence but you're all taller than me and Brittany is definitely far more flexible. Plus of course, as the host, or co host I almost have to, it's pretty much dinner party law."
Brittany just laughed and shook her head as she joined the other two, both Santana and Quinn were keyed up and determined to win. Brittany caught Rachel's eye and rolled her eyes sympathetically before taking her place. Once Rachel had recounted the rules to all three of them the game started, as of course did the hilarity. The first game was won by Quinn when Brittany and Santana ended up making out underneath her in a tangle, the second was won by Santana when Quinn tripped over her own foot and sent both herself and Brittany flying into the TV stand. The third game was most definitely won by Brittany as Quinn and Santana ended up fighting over the same green spot and brawling clumsily until Rachel 'accidentally' dropped her now cold coffee on both of them. Sitting up and spluttering slightly the two quickly murmured an apology as they were still trying to avoid a night on the sofa. Brittany was the first to succumb to weariness after the long day and with an apologetic smile turned to Rachel.
"I know this feel's like we're eating and running almost but I'm shattered after today, I think it's time for home and bed, especially if I'm going to give Santana enough time to grovel her way back into the bed."
The Latina rolled her eyes while Rachel and Brittany smirked at each other, Quinn grinned until Rachel looked her way. At that point she tried her best to look as though she derived no amusement whatsoever…obviously in an attempt to get back into Rachel's good graces and her own bed.
"No problem Brit, we're really glad you guys came over and as plans for the wedding speed up we'll keep in touch for fittings and stuff."
The two friends embraced for a long moment while Santana and Quinn stood to the side trying not to scuff their feet. Quinn hugged Brittany and Rachel (despite Santana's protestations) hugged the Latina. The two old friends restricted themselves to a one armed hug and fist bump before Brit and Santana Apparated back to their apartment. Yawning Quinn picked up the dishes and carried them through to the kitchen looking at the dishes despairingly. From behind her Rachel muttered a spell and they started washing themselves, the Quidditch player turned round and grinned.
"Wow, I thought you were going to make me wash those as well for fighting."
Smiling slightly Rachel deftly slipped her wand back into her pocket and gestured for the blonde to move over towards her. Quinn did so willingly and pulled Rachel into a soft but very thorough kiss, determined to show her fiancée just how deeply in love she actually was. Pulling away when breathing became an issue the Quidditch player looked down into Rachel's passion clouded eyes and smiled softly.
"Do I have to sleep on the sofa?"
Unable to help herself Rachel started giggling and managed to shake her head.
"No, I should make you but I haven't given you your valentines present yet, and for some reason Fabray I cant sleep without a lump stealing all the covers and sprawling over three quarters of the bed."
Grinning crookedly Quinn nodded.
"Well in that case I guess I should, yeah, I mean I wouldn't want you to have to find someone else to fill in that very difficult role."
Rachel nodded in agreement and taking Quinn's hand led the way upstairs using her wand to lock up and turn things off as she went. For once Quinn didn't even think of offering a protest at doing things the muggle way. They changed quickly into their sleeping clothes, Rachel had Quinn's old Ravenclaw Captain's jersey and some shorts while Quinn still had the old Gryffindor T Shirt of her girlfriends and some loose sweatpants. Once they were settled down comfortably and Quinn had let Gideon out for a night flight they both pulled their presents from their respective hiding places. Quinn chewed her lip nervously and toyed with the badly tied ribbon that she had tried to place around the red wrapped parcel. Taking a breath for courage she handed it over.
"Open yours first…you know in case you hate it so much you don't want to give me mine?"
Smiling indulgently Rachel accepted the package and started to unwrap it carefully, more carefully than the clumsily wrapped package actually warranted.
"All right but I wont hate it, you always worry but I never hate what you come up with…sometimes it's odd until you explain why, then it becomes extra special."
The blonde nodded and rubbed the back of her neck while she watched on anxiously as the paper was slowly peeled back, folded and placed to one side. Rachel was aware of Quinn's agitation but knew that whatever the Quidditch player had brought her would be thoughtfully chosen, sometimes offbeat but always deeply thought out. And as she suspected this gift was no exception, nestled in amongst the tissue paper was an old, very old fountain pen, there was a certificate underneath it and forehead creased in concentration she reached in and extracted it. With careful hands she unfolded and started to read the small piece of calligraphy embossed card. She was only seven words in when she gasped and turned to Quinn with wide eyes.
"Is this…is this really her fountain pen? You brought me Rowena Ravenclaw's fountain pen?"
Rubbing the back of her neck again Quinn nodded self consciously.
"I know that you were in Gryffindor but I figured with you being a writer, that owning the fountain pen that used to belong to one of the smartest witches ever born could only help with your projects…was that okay?"
Reaching across Rachel pulled Quinn into such a deep kiss that the blonde forgot all about the parcel that she hadn't opened yet. The little brunette however had not forgotten and wasn't going to allow Quinn to forget either. Pulling away from the kiss she got her breath back and then pecked the tip of the Quidditch players nose sweetly.
"It's perfect Foxy, now open yours okay?"
Blinking dumbly for a moment, Quinn had to shake herself as she wrapped her fingers around the box Rachel placed in her hands. Smiling dopily she started to unwrap the much more neatly wrapped present in a much more messy way with paper scraps and ribbons flying everywhere. It never ceased to amuse Rachel that as older as they got Quinn never lost her childish enthusiasm when it came to unwrapping gifts. As she finally ripped into the cardboard box Quinn's eyes went wide and she looked up at Rachel for a moment who was chewing her lower lip nervously. Looking back down into the box she reached in and carefully extracted the very first copy of 'Shaky' swallowing she ran her forefinger lightly over the raised outline of a perfect replica of her little shark.
"Read the dedication."
Quinn didn't look up when Rachel spoke as she was scared that if she did the tears would start to fall, instead she flipped open the book and her eyes fell to the typed dedication that would grace every copy of the book.
'For Q, the bravest, sweetest and most amazing person it has ever been my pleasure to meet. I love you now and always and just like shaky will you always be able to depend on me.'
"I know it's not strictly speaking a good present but I wanted you to have the very first copy of the book because if it wasn't for you it wouldn't exist."
Mastering her emotions Quinn very carefully placed the book on her nightstand and then swept the detritus from unwrapping it onto the floor. Reaching across she pulled Rachel to her and started peppering her face with sweet little kisses as she murmured between them.
"That…was…the best…present…ever…Shaky will be…so proud."
Sinking down into the bed they both giggled slightly as the kisses slowly went from shy, romantic pecks to longer more exploratory ones until it was all tongue's teeth and lips. Their nightclothes were quickly stripped off and discarded around the bedroom as they set about thanking each other for their gifts and for being in each others lives. After all, with a wedding to plan and Brittany and Santana as their co organisers, it was going to be nigh on impossible to find a moments peace in the coming months!
Hmm it has been a long time coming but finally I have posted a PAF one shot lol, I thought as I was all alone on Valentines day I would indulge my romantic streak by letting the Hogwarts girls out to play! And now of course there is the possibility of writing about the wedding and hen and stag nights, if you want them? Um I know I ended it in the PG zone but these guys are just too sweet for that, having said that if anyone wants to take up where I left off and fill in the gaps so to speak, I'd love to see what you come up with! Well I need to get some sleep now but before I leave you I just have to say it….FABERY WON! FABERRY FTW!
Also I know some people have done artwork for this story and maybe some of my others but I am useless at finding them so if anyone knows of any please e mail me links to bxmrphy aim .com (obviously without the spaces lol) so I can thank people! Happy Valentines Day everyone