The words flow out of his mouth so easily.
"Hey Santana . . . why don't you just come out of the closet?"
You freeze. Surely, you muse, this is not happening to you? You look straight ahead, too afraid to look into the eyes of Finn Hudson.
"I think I know why you're constantly tearing everybody down." He pauses, much to your relief, but your heart continues to race. "It's because you're constantly tearing yourself down. You're just too afraid to admit that you're in love with Brittany and she might not love you back."
How could this possibly happen? And to you, of all people. You stand there, eyes focused on the cold tile floors of McKinley High School, his words hitting you like a bullet. You wonder how he could have figured this out, figured you out. You were always so careful with everything. You try to think of anything, anything at all, that could have blown your cover, but come up with nothing.
Your heart is pounding, your blood rushing, through your ears. It's all you can hear, with the exception of Finn's words.
"You know what I think you are?"
Disgusting. Horrible. Everything that could ever be wrong in this crazy, messed up world.
The nail was hit on the head . . . hard.
"I haven't even told my parents yet!"
You run . . . again. You don't know where you're going, or how you're going to get there, or even how long it'll take. You just go.
Surely, you think as your feet carry you away, they'll kick me out. It is Ohio, after all. People are so close-minded around here. Once they have an opinion, a viewpoint, they stand to it. They won't hear what others have to say, or think logically. They just deny.
You recall how you felt, saying that you told your parents and they still love and accept you. Now, as you walk through the threshold leading into your kitchen, you're confident. Your glee club loves you, your parents who were hardly even there for you still love you, so surely your abuela, the woman who raised you, will still love you, too.
You take a deep breath, bringing her over to the table. The thoughts of her not accepting you flood through your mind, but you push them out of the way. Of course she will, you think calmly, she's your abuela. She raised you. You've known her your entire life. She was there when your parents weren't. It'll be fine.
"Look, I have to tell you a secret; A secret that I've kept hidden for a long time." You can't help the excitement that's in your voice, because this is such a big deal and you're finally telling one of the most important people in your life. She'll know, and a huge weight will be lifted. She'll hug you, praise you, and say how proud she is that you're being yourself and not who others want you to be.
"You want some salsa?" She offers, as though trying to ignore that there is something hanging in the air. You decline, of course, and continue.
"You're so special to me -" You begin, only to have her cut you off.
"Santana, are you pregnant?" You're shocked. You think how silly she is for thinking that you're pregnant when you like girls. Oh, that's right. You recall that she doesn't know yet, that that's the reason you're sitting here with her. You're still trying to come out to her. She continues, ignoring the expression on your face. "'Cause I will beat you up with this chair . . ."
You chuckle at the ignorance of the accusation, once more reminding yourself that she still doesn't know.
"No, no, no, it's not that." You break her gaze, looking down, trying to muster up your courage. Here it goes. "It's just that I've watched you my whole life . . . and you've always been so strong. You done exactly what you believe and never cared what anyone else thought of you."
"Tell me about your life," she presses, "I know mine."
You pause, trying to calm your heart back down. You wonder when it started beating so rapidly in the first place. You take a silent deep breath and catch her gaze once again. "I . . . love girls." She stays silent, staring from across the kitchen table, so you continue, clarifying what you mean. "The way I'm supposed to feel about boys."
You study her, but only for a moment. Her lips are pressed in a thin line, but she appears calm, listening to your words.
You continue, "I-It's just something that's always been inside of me, and I really want to share it with you because I love you so much. I want you to now me." You place a hand over your heart, your words pouring out so easily. "Who I really am."
You take yet another deep breath, letting your heart pour out to her. "When I'm with Brittany, I finally understand what people are talking about when they talk about love."
As soon as the words leave your mouth, her eyes break away from yours and she looks away. Probably to the photo that was held by a magnet on your refrigerator of Brittany and yourself, large smiles plastered to your faces. Possibly to the one of you kissing her cheek, a light blush covering both of your faces.
"I've tried so hard to push this feeling away," you add, as though that would change the look of pure disgust that had settled over her face. "And keep it locked inside. But everyday just feels like a war. And I walk around, so mad at the world, but I'm really just fighting with myself. I don't want to fight anymore." You look at her, hard in the eyes, and shrug slightly, your voice dropping to a whisper, "I'm just too tired. I have to just be me."
She finally returns your gaze, and she breaths out. She doesn't say anything to you. No response, no hugs. She just sits there, silent, starting.
Your heart starts to speed up. But you keep making yourself think of how there's no longer a weight on your chest. You've told everyone who really matters to you. It's all out.
"Say something, please." You quietly beg, your eyes showing your growing worry.
After what seems like forever, your abuela speaks up. "Everyone has secrets, Santana. They're called secrets for a reason." You look at her, confusion slowly taking over, but you stay strong, holding her gaze. "I want you to leave this house. I never want to see you again."
She says it so calm. Surely, she's joking, you think. But you know, deep inside, that she's not. Her eyes say that she's dead serious, that, yes, she's one of those close-minded people, too.
"Abuela . . ."
"Go." She glares, hard.
"You don't -" You began, trying so hard to change her mind, to make her see the light.
You grow desperate, your voice is filling up with panic. "I'm the same person I was a minute ago!"
"You made your choice," she states, and your heart breaks even more, "Now I have made mine."
You freeze, shooting a confused, pained look across the table. Surely she couldn't wouldn't do this to you? Then again, she was the one who called you garbage-face in your beginning years. You utter a simple question: "Why?"
She takes a breath, staring at some of the items on the table. "It's selfish of you . . . to make me uncomfortable." She mutters something, then continues, her cold words hitting you like slaps in the face. Her eyes have yet to meet yours. "The sin isn't in the thing, it's in the scandal when people talk about it aloud."
You know you've made a mistake. You shouldn't have spoken . . .
You know that's a lie, and you push that thought away. She is the one in the wrong here, not you. You know you're right. You know that she's the close-minded, selfish one here.
You can't help but feel the tears starting to brim.
"So . . . you're saying it would have been better if I had kept this a secret?" You look at her as though you've never seen her before. Honestly, have you? Have you truly seen this cruel, harsh woman? You think, but only for a moment to realize that, no, you haven't. There's no love, none at all. Perhaps from you because she is your role model, but none returned. People who love you don't call you horrible, cruel names. They don't kick you out of your own house for something that you can't help, something that shouldn't even be a huge deal.
She doesn't say a word, only glares at you as she shuffles to get up to leave you alone. You watch her as she turns her back, not giving you a second glance, and walks away.
"Abuela . . ." You whisper brokenly. You can't help the tears that fall from your eyes, down your cheeks. You're left there, alone, breaking at the seams at your kitchen table. You can't move, can't speak. You simply sit there and die inside.
She hates you.
She's disgusted by you.
She wants you gone, and soon.
You're dead to her.
You think of calling Brittany, your one, true lifeline. You wonder what would happen if she hears you, and you angrily get up, knocking the chair over in the process. It's no longer yours, so you really don't care if it's broken from the force or not.
You run upstairs, slamming the door to what was once your room. You yank out your cell phone, dialing the number of your loved one.
"Hey, Santana!" Her voice is cheerful, peppy. You can't help but smile, because, hey, you're the reason for that.
"Tana? What's wrong?" She must have heard the sob that escaped your lips, and you sigh, biting your lip. "Hey, talk to me."
You take a deep breath, and pull out a suit case, holding the phone between your shoulder and your ear as you begin to gather your clothes. "I . . . I told my abuela."
Normally, you suspect, Brittany would have been estatic, much like when you told her about the conversation with your parents, and how they fully supported you and she as a couple, as long as you were happy and weren't bothering them too much. "And?"
"She kicked me out!"
The line is silent for a moment before Brittany asks, "Where are you going to go?"
You sigh, stuffing some of your other belongings into the bag. "I don't know. I have no where."
"Come live with me."
"Britt . . ." You sigh, before nodding. "Y-Yeah. Okay. I'll . . . I'll be there soon."
You're about to hang up, before the sound of another sentence forming stops you. "I-I love you, Santana."
You smile, a few tears still falling and smearing your mascara and eyeliner even more. "I love you too, Britt."
And, yeah, maybe everyday is a war. But you know, in your heart, that it's a war worth fighting. Especially if it's for Brittany.