I do not own Glee or any of the original characters, It all belongs to RIB and Fox. Any characters you don't recognise are my own creations.

Thank you to those who have left reviews, your feedback is appreciated.

R&R please. Flashbacks are in italics.

Chapter 36

Santana smiles as she meets Quinn's gaze from across the living room, Quinn shooting her a wink. She's glad she did this, throwing a party to celebrate Quinn's new job is the perfect way for them both to unwind before the hectic Christmas season starts. It also gives Quinn a huge boost. After spending a long time feeling useless, no matter what Santana said to her, about not having a job; a party being thrown in her honour has put a smile on Quinn's face. A smile that hadn't faltered in the last few hours. Yeah, Santana is really, really glad she did this, especially because Quinn had already told her that she plans to show Santana just how much she appreciates this as soon as they're alone. Of course, that's not why Santana did it; it's just a very pleasant bonus.

"Where's uncle Noah?" Santana turns to look at Aaron, the boy pretty much a miniature Mike, and ruffles his hair playfully.

"He should be here soon, little man," Santana tells him, "his girlfriend is flying here tonight so he needs to pick her up first," she explains, noticing that he sighs and his shoulders slump. "Am I not good enough for you anymore?" she asks teasingly.

"You're plenty good enough," Aaron instantly responds, "but uncle Noah helped me make aunt Quinn a present, he's bringing it with him," he adds, slumping down next to Santana and gazing at her beer.

"You made aunt Quinn a present? That's really cool of you, buddy, I bet she loves it," Santana smiles.

"I worked real hard on it," Aaron states seriously. "Can I have some of that?"

"My beer? Definitely not," Santana shakes her head, "your mom and dad would kick my butt."

"That's right, we would." Santana smirks as Aaron stares guiltily up at his father, who had seemingly appeared out of thin air. "There is soda in the kitchen, ask your mom to help you reach it," Mike states, shaking his head in amusement as his son huffs and goes in search of Tina. Mike sits down next to Santana with his own beer, smirking at the woman.


"Poor little guy, he truly thought that aunt Santana was as badass and cool as she claimed to be but now he knows that she won't do anything that would upset Tina. He must be devastated to know that you're scared of Tina," Mike grins.

"I am not scared of Tina! If I have kids I won't give them beer while they're still, like, half my height. Why would I do it to another person's kid?" Santana defends herself. "Did you come over here just to irritate me?" she huffs.

"No," Mike sighs, his features suddenly sobering. "I actually have to tell you something... about Puck's girlfriend," he murmurs. "He didn't know how to tell you, and I guess his genius plan is just to surprise you when he walks through the door with her." Santana can tell by the tone of Mike's voice that he's not exactly happy with Noah. "It's Brittany," Mike eventually says lowly. "I don't know how long they've been back in touch for, but I think they're pretty serious." Santana's eyebrows rise in surprise and she takes a deep drink of her beer, contemplating his revelation. "He wasn't trying to lie to you, he just...well, you gotta admit that it's not an easy thing for him to tell you."

"Yeah, I wasn't expecting that," Santana murmurs, worrying her bottom lip with her teeth. "Does Quinn know?"

"Yes, Tina told her a little while ago. She seems okay about Brittany coming here. I guess she and Brittany got over their issues more than we thought," Mike shrugs. "I thought I should warn you."

"Thanks," Santana murmurs. "I'm right to be shocked, right?"

"Well, yeah. I was pretty shocked," Mike nods. "What is it with our high school, did they put love potions in the water or something?"

"Love potions?" Santana questions, a mocking grin on her face.

"Whatever," Mike rolls his eyes. "Excuse me while I go drink all of your expensive beer," he adds, smiling smugly as he stands up and heads to the kitchen.



Quinn sighs heavily as she slumps down into one of the seats in the library of Mckinley, massaging her temple with the tips of her fingers in an attempt to stave off the headache that had been blossoming for the last hour. She can't wait until all of these exams are over, they're slowly driving her insane. As well as the exams, she has to prepare for nationals, which means Rachel has gone well passed insane and is currently acting like a psychotic midget on crack. Doesn't she realise that it's not just about her?! She and Santana had talked the night before about putting the list of rules away for a little while, both of them agreeing that she is doing really well right now. There's no need for the rules to be in place right now, and this morning Quinn had enjoyed her first glorious cup of coffee in months. It's lucky that she did, because Quinn is pretty sure that she would not be awake right now if it weren't for the caffeine boost. Sure, the rules state that she could have one each day, only on days when they had school, but she could never function on just one so Quinn had never seen the point in drinking any if she couldn't have her regular amount.

"Hey, would you..uh..would you mind if I sat here?" Quinn looks up to see Brittany awkwardly hovering beside her.

"Of course not, have a seat," Quinn states with a nervous smile.

"Thanks," Brittany murmurs, sitting down with her books and folders with a relieved sigh. She looks as exhausted as Quinn feels. It's awkward between them, they haven't spoken since the night Brittany convinced Quinn to hand Beth over and to stop her crazy plan. Even that interaction had still been better than their previous one. "So...how have you been?" Brittany questions lamely, inwardly cursing herself. It shouldn't be this hard to talk to Quinn, they've known each other since first grade.

"Good...much better," Quinn mumbles. "You?"

"Yeah, I've been good," Brittany replies, nodding and rubbing the back of her neck. "Good," she repeats.

"Good, that's...good." Quinn sighs and rolls her eyes.

"This shouldn't be so hard," Brittany states softly. "We've been friends forever, it shouldn't be so weird between us. I really wish we could go back to how things were."

"Well, the only reason we're having an issues is because of what you said that night at the party. You have a problem with me, not the other way around, Brittany," Quinn tells her seriously. "Or perhaps not a problem with me, but you definitely have a problem with my relationship with Santana."

"It's hard," Brittany murmurs. "I may not love her in that way anymore, but I still care about her. I didn't want her to get hurt."

"You thought I would hurt her?" Quinn asks softly, cocking her head to the side and studying Brittany curiously.

"Not directly," Brittany states, "Santana loves hard," she notes, "and when she feels that way about someone, she protects them. When you and Santana got together, you were in a bad place. Santana hurts when people that she loves hurt. In a way, you were hurting her," Brittany explains. "It wasn't fair of me to react the way I did, I didn't, and still don't, understand how you were feeling. I'm sorry," she murmurs. "I love you both, I do, I guess I was a little jealous, too."

"Jealous? Why? You said you didn't love Santana in that way," Quinn states in confusion.

"I didn't, I don't. I was being selfish. Even though I didn't want to be with Santana, it was hard to see her with someone else. To see her loving someone else and looking out for them in the way she used to look out for me," Brittany informs her. "I've been the world's worst friend recently. In the year that you really needed people around you, I abandoned you. I truly am very sorry."

"I know you are," Quinn nods, "and it's okay. I forgive you. I'm sorry, too. Smashing up the kitchen probably wasn't the best way to respond to what you were saying."

"Probably not," Brittany smiles. "I know Santana's mad at me, and I know she will be for a long time. That's how she is, I made you believe you weren't good enough, I'm mad at me, too."

"I already believed that, you just confirmed, I guess," Quinn murmurs, staring down at her books.

"You are," Brittany states quietly, "good enough, I mean. You guys are clearly perfect for each other, I see the looks between you. She sang to you in front of the entire glee club, that says it all. She wouldn't do that to just anyone," Brittany says softly. "We're graduating soon, and I know Santana and I never gonna be friends again. At least not like we used to be. Neither are you and I, and I know that's my fault but I couldn't let us all graduate and go our seperate ways without apologising."

"I understand that," Quinn states lowly, nodding. "Are you and Artie gonna be okay? It must be hard thinking about college when you know he's not graduating until next year."

"We're going to try," Brittany mumbles. "We know it's going to be hard but it's just a year and if it's meant to be, we'll make it." Quinn nods, unsure of what to say, they aren't exactly close anymore..she doesn't actually know very much about Brittany and Artie's relationship. "Anyway, I just wanted to try and clear a little bit, I have a math test in twenty minutes so I better go. Thanks for letting me explain."

"It's okay," Quinn smiles, "good luck!"

Quinn makes her way to the front door of the apartment when she hears the loud knock after noticing that Santana is in the middle of a conversation with Tina. She frowns in confusion when she opens the apartment door to find Puck and Brittany standing in the hallway.

"Since when do you knock?" she asks with a scoff, accepting the hug and kiss on the cheek he gives her.

"Since I have a date with me, I'm..uh..sure you remember Brittany," Puck awkwardly states, eyeing Quinn warily.

"Mike and Tina told us," Quinn retorts with a roll of her hazel eyes. "Hey, Brittany, it's great to see you again," she smiles, pulling Brittany into a quick hug. Brittany smiles nervously and thrusts a bottle of wine into Quinn's hands.

"You, too," Brittany says. "You look good, congratulations on your new job."

"Thank you," Quinn beams, ushering Puck and Brittany into the apartment and catching Santana's eye, her wife hesitantly crossing the room to join them. Quinn recognises Santana's smile as the smile she uses for irritating patients that hold her back at the end of a shift; forced.

"Hey guys, I'm glad you could make it," Santana states politely...too politely. They make pointless small talk, and Quinn notices that Santana is uncomfortable around Brittany, it being obvious when Santana visibly relaxes once Brittany excuses herself to the bathroom.

"Be a man for once, Puckerman," Santana murmurs with a sigh, "I'd rather you told me things rather than allowing Chang squared to do it for you." Puck nods with a grimace, watching warily as Santana walks off to go grab another beer.

"I thought you guys had worked things out with Brittany," Puck states softly.

"Santana never did. Brittany and I were on good terms when we graduated, though," Quinn explains. "She's not mad, she just doesn't know how to act around Brittany, you know Santana well enough to know that," Quinn reminds him. "High school was a long time ago, we've all changed and grown up but being out of touch for nine and a half years after ending on bad terms still has an effect on people."

"You're right," Puck sighs, "I'll go talk to her."

"Not tonight," Quinn states firmly, Puck relenting and nodding.

"I'm really proud of you, you know," Puck murmurs, "and I'm happy for you. You're gonna kick ass at this new job."

"I hope so because it's the same job I've been doing for a couple of years," Quinn chuckles, "just a different environment. But, thank you," she says sincerely. "Are you happy with Brittany?" she asks softly.

"Yeah," Noah replies with a small smile, "very happy. She's amazing."

"Then I'm happy for you," Quinn states. "Now, go get yourself and your girl a drink. Aaron has been waiting for you, he says he has some serious business to discuss with you," she chuckles, squeezing his forearm as she brushes passed him and follows in the direction her wife had gone. She finds Santana in the kitchen and she waits until Puck sorts a drink for him and Brittany and leaves again before approacing her, placing her hands on Santana's hips. "Are you okay?"

"Yeah, I'm good, babe," Santana states with a gentle smile, "I'm really good. It was just a surprise to find out that Noah is dating Brittany. I know it was a long time ago but... I don't know, I guess I've always been mad at her."

"That's understandable, honey," Quinn murmurs. "She's in town for a couple of days, you should talk to her before she flies home. We're all adults now."

"I know," Santana smiles, leaning forward and placing a tender kiss to her wife's lips. "I'll talk to her, I promise. Are you enjoying your party?"

"I am. Very much so. Thank you for planning it," Quinn replies with a smile, one that lights her eyes up.

"You're welcome, my love. Wine?"

"In a minute," Quinn smirks, capturing Santana's lips with her own and kissing her deeply, her hands snaking around Santana's waist and lowering down to her ass. She slaps it sharply, grinning into the kiss when Santana moans.

"EW! That's so gross." They jump apart when they hear Aaron's voice, "mommy and daddy kiss all the time, too," he states.

"It's not gross, little man. Trust me, you'll understand when you're older," Santana grins.

"Nuh uh! I'm never gonna kiss anyone like that," Aaron frowns, wrinkling his nose. He pulls a sheet of paper from behind his back and holds it out for Quinn, grinning when she takes it. Quinn smiles down at the picture, it's a drawing of her and Aaron at the park.

"To aunty Quinn, well done for getting a new job. Lot's of love, Aaron," Quinn reads out. "Aw, Aaron, this is awesome. Thank you, buddy, I'm gonna put this on the fridge!" Quinn beams, leaning down and kissing his cheek, the boy smiling shyly and not bothering to wipe his face like he usually does when someone kisses him.

"You're welcome," he chirps, groaning when Santana kisses Santana's cheek. "Grown ups are so gross," he grumbles, rushing back out of the kitchen. Quinn smiles down at the drawing and moves across to the fridge, using one of the magnets to keep it in place on the door.

"That kid is just too adorable," Santana notes, "he's not a bad little artist either."

"Totally," Quinn nods, turning around and wrapping her arms around Santana. She tips her head and kisses her wife sweetly, gazing at her with a gentle smile. "Our fridge looks good with a kid's artwork on it."

To be continued...one more chapter and an epilogue to go! Please review!