This is a sorta-sequel to my story Glimpse, if you haven't read that I encourage you to, if you don't want to but wish to read on anyway, erm, enjoy as best you can brave reader.
Santana woke with a jerk, like someone who had just been scared awake with a sudden noise, but the room was quiet. The moment she sat up she knew everything was wrong, though visually little had changed.
The hum of the air conditioner in what should have been the middle of winter, the utter lack of screaming children on what should have been Christmas Day and most importantly her lack of clothes when she remembered putting on her pajamas before going to bed, were a few things on the long list of odd changes. Looking down and seeing Brittany in the same state of undress made her feel absolutely horrible.
It had been hell for her to avoid having relations with her wife for so long but she had sworn to herself that as long as Selena was in the picture she could no longer allow herself that indulgence. Clearly she had broken that rule, in the middle of the night… somehow. Though surprising that it had managed to happen without her recollection, it wasn't a big shock that her intense longing for the intimacy of their earlier relationship had manifested itself in some way.
Still disoriented she stood and dressed wondering why everything seemed to have moved, like someone had just broken in and changed all the tiny details of her life. Still trying to remember exactly what she had done the previous night she staggered out of the bedroom and into the hall. She was going to turn and head into the living room when she spotted Ella peaking at her from the door of her room at the other end of the hall.
"I thought you and Violet would have been up and opening presents by now." She said trying to ignore the wriggling feeling she got as she looked at her, the girl reminding her what a mistake last night was whether she recalled it or not.
Ella looked at her with sad frightened eyes and it hurt her heart to see that this was what she had made of the family that was once so happy, "It's just Saturday, Christmas was last year." She walked down the hall hesitantly to where Santana was currently trying to process what she had said.
"What are you talking about? Today is Christmas."
Timidly Ella grabbed her hand, as if unsure she would snatch it away or not, but when she didn't she led her mother to the living room to see that there was not a single Christmas decoration anywhere and through the windows she could see that the surrounding houses were in the same state. The roads and houses were completely devoid of the snow that had made bringing the presents home a nearly fatal ordeal.
"You were gone for a while it's June now." Ella said quietly.
Santana looked down at her, confusion all over her face, "Gone?"
"There was a different Santana here for a while."
She looked at her daughter like she was growing a second head, "What?"
"She came and everything got better." At this a distant mournful look came over her.
"Is this supposed to be a joke?"
"Mom knows about Ms. Novak." She said right before the sound of Brittany entering the living room ended their conversation.
Santana looked over to her wife expecting a slap followed by screaming and crying but instead she was met with soft inviting lips that gave her a kiss reserved for those who had recently been intimate.
"Morning." Brittany said in a playfully seductive voice before moving into the couch where she was shortly joined by Violet for Saturday cartoons.
Santana spun back to Ella, who was looking afraid and oddly hopeful, and knelt close to her, "What did you say to her?" she growled, her anger and confusion at everything making her short fuse shorter.
Ella took a step back in fear and Santana immediately regretted her actions as she always seemed to around her daughter, "I didn't say anything." She said near tears.
In all of their arguments Santana had never seen Ella look even remotely affected by anything she said, the girl was tough as nails and it had always been something that drove her nuts as she defiantly went out of her way to be a bother. Seeing her this way made Santana just feel like a bad parent and a bully.
"I'm sorry." She said quickly before Ella's distress reached Brittany's ears, her wife had superhuman hearing when it came to their children. Luckily she was too busy discussing the morning's channel itinerary to have heard the exchange, "I didn't mean to get upset. Can we talk?" she asked trying to sound as calm as she was pretending to be.
Her daughter nodded and escorted her to the room she shared with Violet, Santana noticed that there were items she didn't recognize all over the place and Violet's bed was covered in new Jimmy Newtron bed sheets. She looked around at all the minor changes before her gaze returned to Ella who was looking fearful again.
Santana took a deep breath and let it out slowly, determined to not let her daughter be on the receiving end of her unjustified anger again, "I'm sorry about before. I shouldn't have snapped at you. I do need to know what you meant about before… about Ms. Novak."
Ella just looked at the floor, "Mom knows about her already. The other you told her."
She felt like her world was tilting, "What do you mean the other me? What are you talking about?" she whispered fiercely all while keeping her ever flaring temper in check.
"There was someone else here, she was you, but really different."
Ella shrugged, "She liked me." She said sadly.
Santana flinched, that had stung bad, she sighed and knelt before her daughter, "Ella I don't dislike you. I love you very much and I know I have been really bad at showing that but I do."
Ella looked like she wanted to believe those words but obviously didn't, she nodded her head meekly and stared at the floor.
For the first time Santana began to see how her short temper had actually affected the smaller girl and if it were possible she felt even worse, Ella never showed vulnerability and because of that somewhere along the line Santana had forgotten that despite all the bravado she was still a child, moreover she was a Lopez child and hiding hurt behind false bravery was almost textbook in her family.
Tentatively she pulled her daughter into a hug that was only half returned, "I truly am sorry." She said again her voice low but strong, "You do understand that don't you?"
She felt a slight nod against her shoulder and released Ella looking into her hazel eyes now full of hope but not void of sorrow.
"Wanna watch cartoons?" Ella asked shyly.
Normally Santana would decline as the weekend for her was usually more busy than a weekday and now more than ever she needed to figure out what the hell had happened to her life. But looking down at those eyes that both feared and expected rejection she couldn't possibly say no.
"Alright." She said putting on her best smile despite her still raging internal panic.
Clearly surprised Ella beamed up at her and took off for the living room, Santana followed unable to stop the giddy happiness that welled up next to the almost overwhelming fear at the sight of the child's joy. Deciding she needed to calm down before she could begin to sort through everything she made her way to the couch and sat next to Ella, Violet and Brittany were on the floor opting to sit inadvisably close to the television.
Upon seeing her arrive Brittany smiled widely and joined her plopping down right next to her wife and throwing her legs in her lap, "I love that you watch television with us again." She said quietly into her ear accenting it with a light peck to the cheek.
Santana had once upon a time watched cartoons with her family on Saturdays but work, stress and a need to jog it off made her stop. That and an overwhelming sense of guilt that kept her away from activities that put her Brittany and Ella in the same place for extended periods of time. However before Santana could come up with some sort of reply Violet spun around her blue eye shining in a way that reminded the brunette so strongly of Brittany.
"Can we make our own breakfast today if you're not making any?" she asked already halfway off the floor.
Santana sighed heavily, she had completely forgotten about breakfast and just like that the unease from before crept back in and overwhelmed her, "Yeah, sorry I've just been off my game today."
Before she had even really finished that sentence Violet was up and racing to the kitchen, several sounds of shuffling plates and silverware later she was padding back to the living room a plate of something indistinguishable in her hand. Santana frowned suspiciously as she watched her oldest child eat something she was so sure she couldn't be seeing.
"Is that cake?" she asked incredulously.
Violet turned with her fork hanging out of her mouth and her cheeks puffed out cutely from the mouthful of the sugary substance, "Yeth." She somehow managed to say.
She wanted to go off on how cake was not an acceptable breakfast item but ground her teeth instead, there were already too many things to deal with and she could sense Brittany preparing to run interference on her left and Ella tensing up nervously on her right.
Letting out a calming breath she asked, "Where did you get cake?"
The small blonde chewed excessively before swallowing her mouthful, "It was in the fridge."
"Yes but how did it get there?"
"It's okay San it's just what was left over from the baby shower so there's not a lot left." Brittany said a pleading note in her voice as she ran her fingers soothingly through Santana's hair.
Santana felt her blood freeze, "Baby shower?" she said so quietly Brittany would have missed it if she weren't so close.
"Yes silly," she laughed, "from last night."
"Whose…" Santana paused when she felt a tug at her sleeve and turned to see Ella beckoning her closer, she leaned over offering her ear.
Ella cupped her hand and whispered, "Mom's pregnant, it was her baby shower last night."
Everything went from cold to completely numb, she turned and looked at her daughter hoping to see a joking smile but she was dead serious. The panic was back and it was making her nauseous with its force.
Just as she was feeling she might need to launch herself towards the bathroom there was a loud knock at the door. She was relieved for something to take her mind off the insanity and disentangled herself from Brittany to go get the door only to feel a new sense of panic when she got there as she was unsure if what was on the other side of the door would unleash a whole new bag of what-the-fuck into her life. However when she opened it and saw Puck standing there in his jogging clothes she let out a sigh of relief, here was something constant and normal and she needed it more than anything in the world at the moment.
"You gonna jog in that?" he asked eyeing her casual dress.
Santana gave some thought to changing but she was so desperate to be out of the twilight zone that had once been her house she nodded, grabbed her shoes by the door and gave a brief wave to her family, feeling a little bad about leaving so abruptly when she spotted Ella eyeing her sadly.
Puck gave her an odd look as she began to their jog as if everything were completely normal even though she was wearing jeans and a spaghetti strap top. Shrugging he fell in step next to her and they began their weekend workout.
At first it was just silence, Santana just clearing her mind and determinedly not thinking of anything at all, just focusing on not hyperventilating and hoping that when she let her mind focus again everything would be normal again.
Unfortunately this state of temporary forced peace was broken by Puck.
"So you feeling better since last night?" he asked casually.
Santana groaned in frustration as all the panic and confusion came crashing back and her stomach started to roll as this further confirmation that she had somehow skipped several months of her life became even more real.
"What was wrong with me last night?" she asked stopping mid stride, putting her hands on her hips and looking up at the sky wondering what new horror was going to hit her ears.
"I don't know you wouldn't tell me you just looked all sad and tired and shit. If you still don't want to talk about it that's fine." He watched her for a moment and even though she was looking at the sky he could see her carefully constructed mask of calm cracking, "To be honest you look a little worse today… like more panicked."
She looked down at him and gave a dry laugh, "I woke up today and it's June!"
He stared at her blankly waiting for her to elaborate and when she didn't he frowned waving his hand for her to continue, "Aaand."
"And when I went to sleep last night it was Christmas Eve of last fucking year! I wake up to find that not only is my wife pregnant but apparently everyone but me knows it!"
She expected him to laugh or at least question her further but instead a worried expression crossed his face, "Are you kidding me?"
"No." she said simply a little thrown that he was taking her seriously.
He ran his fingers through his short hair letting out a hiss of air, "Right." He said simply and jerked his head back to the sidewalk, "Come on." He said and continued on their jog.
She was even more confused by this but followed him deciding maybe in this new world Puck just didn't respond to crazy ramblings. They went on in silence and Santana opted to just clear her mind again and deal with it all later because it was all just too much for a Saturday in June that should have been Christmas in December. She was so lost in not thinking about anything she didn't realize that they were far off their usual route, it was only when she stopped did she realize she was standing in front of the door of the local clinic. She looked questioningly at Puck as he opened the door for her.
"I should have taken you straight here the first time."
"What do you mean the first time?" she asked but the only answer she got was Puck shoving her in the door.
Santana's day had started off with confusion and ended with a numbing sort of acceptance, she had gone through a battery of test that had turned up nothing and she was still awaiting the results of several more that she was pretty sure would show just as much nothing as the others had. The doctor had suggested that the problem wasn't physical but mental and had given her the number of a psychologist that Puck had immediately phoned and made an appointment with. Puck had done it because Santana had been too busy freaking out over the thought of her going mentally insane.
Deciding she needed a little help Puck brought her to his bar and got a few beers in her to keep that wild fearful look off her face. He tried to help by retelling the conversation he'd had with her when she had first claimed memory loss but that only served to make her look painfully sad at the thought of not remembering her children. Three beers later though she was able to finally lean back in the booth and almost smile about the whole thing.
"So did I totally fuck over the Cherrios?" she asked lazily after a while.
"What? No way you guys are sure to win." He said genuinely taking a swig of beer.
"Are you just saying that?"
"No caught a peek at em a little while ago, they were in top shape."
"We still using that insane move I made up?"
He chuckled, "Yeah only cause Jamie lands it every time."
"That girl is something else, reminds me of a young me."
"No if she was a young you she would have busted her ass on the first try." He jibed.
Santana smiled lightly at that and toyed absently with her beer bottle, "Noah what happened with Selena? What… what did I do?"
He took several deep gulps before he put the bottle down and looked at her, "It was pretty fucking awful."
Santana looked away, "It broke her heart didn't it?"
"Smashed it." he paused before he continued, "Me, Quinn and Brittany went to see a movie that night and you were supposed to meet up with us but you never showed. We assumed you had to work late or something but after the movie Britt got a call to come get you at the school. I drove us there and waited outside for her to get you but then she comes running out and she looked…" he paused, "I have never seen her like that."
Santana felt a hard chill run up her spine, "She saw us together?" Her voice was dry and broken.
"That bitch set it up so that Brittany would walk in on the two of you but when you didn't play her way she drugged you and, I don't know, made out with you or something. I'm not exactly sure what she did because either Brittany didn't want to tell Quinn or Quinn didn't want to tell me."
She nodded knowing Selena was fully capable of that level of insanity and cruelty, she tried not to imagine the look that would have been on Brittany's face because it made her stomach twist painfully.
"So she gets in the car and she's just screaming for us to go, and Quinn's asking where you are and then she just starts crying uncontrollably and I just drove. I was a little scared because I just have never seen Britt that upset, ever. We get her home and Quinn tries to calm her down and… it was a mess. Then she chills out a little but you pulled up after a while and Brittany almost loses her mind cause she just can't face you so Quinn takes her into the bedroom and I have to get you to back off for the night."
Santana's face was expressionless because she knew if she did anything it would be to cry enough to make a scene so she remained neutral, "How did I take that?"
He laughed bitterly, "Not well."
"I can imagine."
"But I get you to cool it and you go off somewhere, I have no idea where, and the next day I went to your house, I had to break in through the garage but I got in, talked to Brittany and got her to talk to you."
She smiles warmly at him, "Thank you."
He fidgeted, slightly embarrassed by the intensity of her stare, "You know, whatever, I promised I would and stuff. So I get you over to talk to her and it takes some time but you guys work it out. I don't know what you said but you talked your way out of the biggest disaster I had ever seen in my life."
"I wish I knew what I said because I ran over scenarios like that for ages and came up blank."
"Santana can I be honest?"
"I don't understand you, I get that what Britt saw was a setup but later Quinn tells me that it hadn't always been, that you really were sleeping with Selena. I mean what the fuck?"
"It was a mistake I never plan to make again, that's all." She said seriously.
"Good cause I'm not going to back you up if you do some silly shit like that again."
She nodded, "I wouldn't back me up either."
He gave a quick nod before he spoke again, "After that me and the guys at the bar kept an eye on her and made sure she didn't jump you again. I still check up on her every now and then." She gave him that knowing thankful smile again and he suddenly became interested in his beer again, "Just keeping my girls safe. Anyway you two make up and you even get her wanting to have a baby again, we just found out last week that she was pregnant."
Santana nodded, she had known Brittany wanted another baby for a while but just couldn't agree with Selena around and things going so badly with Ella. She was glad this other self, this other part of her or whatever it was had gotten her stupid self inflicted catastrophe straightened out enough to give Brittany what she deserved.
"I'm glad it got to that point. Where she would trust me that much ever again." She said unable to prevent a few tears from falling.
Puck averted his eyes and she wiped them away feeling a weird combination of elation, sadness and pride.
"Be sure and get it right this time." He said quietly.
"You have nothing to fear, this life lesson kicked my ass and left a shoeprint on my colon."
It was late when Santana managed to get home, there were a few lights on but she didn't see anyone around. Deciding she was alright with that she went into her bedroom, took a shower and was about to go to bed when there was a soft tentative knock on the door.
Confused she opened the door and was surprised to see Ella there. The small girl looked up at her through wide hazel eyes and pointed down the hall at her bedroom, "Mom's in there if you were looking for her."
Santana frowned and went down the hall to find that, sure enough, Brittany was asleep in Violet's bed, her daughter wrapped tightly in her arms as she slept.
She knelt next to Ella and whispered, "What is she doing here?"
"You didn't call and she was worried."
Santana winced in understanding, Brittany never wanted to seem clingy even though it was in her nature so she would usually seek others for comfort when she was worried about Santana returning late. When they had first been married and she'd had late study sessions or got caught up with something she would return home to find that Brittany was over Quinn's usually interrupting her private time with Puck. Up until now Santana had always made it a point to let her wife know where she was.
"I got a little caught up, I went to the doctor to try and figure out what is wrong with my memory."
Ella gave her a look that told her she was hesitant to say what she did, "You smell like beer and cigarettes."
Santana had to laugh, before that might have made her upset but somehow the strangeness of the day had liberated her of all that, so did the fact that Ella was clearly not trying to goad her into an argument.
"I went to Puck's bar after." She stood and moved to wake Brittany but Ella's voice stopped her.
"You aren't sick." She said quietly.
Santana turned and gave her an odd look, "What?"
"You aren't sick. You didn't forget everything because it wasn't you, it was a different person."
Turning she knelt in front of her daughter wishing she understood her own situation better before trying to explain it to someone else, "There are all types of sicknesses in the world and some of them make people honestly believe they are someone else and I think I have one."
Her daughter stubbornly shook her head, "No. I gave her a bracelet me and Violet made, she was wearing it last night but you don't have it."
Santana gave her a bewildered look and glanced down at her bare wrist, "I could have just taken it off."
Another head shake, "No she wore it all the time."
"Ella why are you so convinced she isn't me?"
"Because she wasn't, she was the same but really different at the same time. We did stuff together and she talked to me all the time."
"She liked me." Ella's words from before echoed in Santana's mind and her face fell.
"We can do that. I know things have been bad with us for a while but I want to make it better, so do you think we can try? Could you try and find a little of her in me?"
Santana didn't know why but that put a hopeful light in the small girls eyes and she nodded vigorously before she wrapped her mother in a tight hug with trembling arms, "I'm sorry I said I would tell I really am, I wasn't going to. I told the other you but I need to tell you too." She cried quietly so as not to wake Violet and Brittany.
Breathing a sigh of relief Santana hugged her back, the embrace feeling like so much more than the one they had shared that morning, "I never should have put you in that position and it was so incredibly wrong of me to take it out on you Ella. I never meant to hurt you."
"Me either I didn't want to make you mad but you wouldn't talk to me and I thought you never would unless I did something to make you yell at me." She confessed, hot tears running on Santana's shoulders as the confession poured out of her and she tightened her arms around her mother.
Santana comfortingly rubbed her back and stood lifting the girl into her arms, still cradling her she sat on Ella's bed and lay down holding the child to her all while giving calming, reassuring words. Soon the tears stopped and her breathing evened out leaving Santana the only one awake in the room. She continued to stroke Ella's black hair; so much like her own, and so much longer than she remembered.
Across from her she saw Brittany laying with her face scrunched up in the way it was when she was having a food dream and she couldn't stop the smile that came over her face and she almost laughed out loud when she saw Violet with the same look. The mirth almost immediately turned to sorrow as she realized that whatever had happened could happen again, that it was possible for her to fall asleep and wake to find Violet was about to get married and Ella had moved to another state and their unborn child was starting college. The panic that the alcohol had kept at bay came back tenfold and she held her daughter a little closer. She wasn't ready for that, there was no way. Already they had wasted so much time due to her foolish decisions and all she could do was pray that whatever happened wouldn't drag her away from her family again. The very thought of missing them grow up made her heart speed up to a dangerous rate.
Santana had no idea how long she stayed awake lying in Ella's bed observing her family and drinking in every detail but eventually sleep did get hold of her while she thought about how, though terrifying and random, whatever had happened to her had rid her of the thing keeping her from having a real relationship with them and in that respect may have been the best thing to happen to her.
The next thing the Latina was aware of was a warm hand on her face and her name being spoken lightly, her eyes fluttered open to see Brittany sitting in front of her with a worried expression on her face.
"Santana?" she questioned seeing the other woman's eyes open, "You don't have to get up I just want to be sure you're feeling alright, you don't usually sleep this late."
"What day is it?"
Brittany gave her a funny look but answered, "Sunday."
Relieved Santana sat up and realized she was in exactly the same place she had been in before she went to sleep and relief rushed through her. Looking around she saw the bedroom was empty and the clock on the wall told her it was past noon. "Wow, I really overslept."
"But you looked so cute doing it." She said with a soft smile and Santana was overwhelmed with a need to kiss her that she didn't fight.
She captured Brittany's lips with her own and the knowledge that this was still possible with her knowing everything that had happened, that her wife knew the truth and would still let her anywhere near her, made her pull the other woman onto her lap to kiss every part of her she could reach. Brittany giggled at the sudden mood change but returned the kisses nonetheless.
"Hello to you too." She laughed.
Still nipping and kissing Brittany's exposed neck she gave a mumbled reply, "Hey."
"And I told Puck you needed to sleep when he came by, I guess I'm a liar." She said breathily as Santana's lips began to travel below her collarbone.
"Had enough sleep." She grunted, her hands beginning to roam under Brittany's shirt.
"Oh gross!" came an exclamation from the door and both women turned to see Violet standing there with a phone in her hands, she lifted it to her face and said, "Sorry Santana's busy doing adult stuff with mom she'll call you back later."
Rolling her eyes Santana plucked the phone out of Violet's hands, "Behave." She said in mock irritation before bringing the phone to her ear.
"Just don't do that on my bed." The small girl mumbled before she retreated down the hall.
Santana sighed and rested her head on Brittany's chest feeling her still erratic heartbeat before turning her attention to the receiver, "Hello?"
"I was told you needed rest, if you wanted to spend the morning having a banging good time all you had to do was say so, the Puck understands. Morning exercises take many forms."
"Ha ha, what do you want."
"Wanted to tell you your appointment was confirmed last night on my voicemail, I got you down for Tuesday at seven. Be there or I swear I will come to your house and drag you there."
"Got it. I'll go don't worry."
"Alright later then, I'll let you get back to your lady." Puck said jovially and hung up.
Santana was totally ready to get back to sweet lady kisses but she saw a concerned look on Brittany's face, "What do you have an appointment for?" Brittany asked clearly having heard the exchange.
"I.. I'm going to see a psychiatrist."
Brittany's brow creased up, "Why?"
"I think I'm suffering from a weird specific case of memory loss."
The confusion on the blonde's face would have been adorable if the situation hadn't been so serious, "I don't understand."
"Neither do I. Britt the last thing I remember before yesterday is climbing into bed with you on Christmas Eve of last year." Santana said letting out a humorless laugh.
Brittany fixed her with that steady blank gaze again, "So you don't remember anything about this whole year?"
"No." she said shyly hoping this wouldn't go as poorly as she thought it might.
For a long moment Brittany stared at her without saying anything, her expression was unreadable and that made Santana very afraid, then finally she said, "Is this your fucked up way of telling me you want to be back with Selena?"
Of all the things she had expected that was at the bottom of the list, as a matter of fact it wasn't even on the list or the backup list, that response had been completely out of nowhere and made her mouth fall open with shock. Sure she had been told Brittany knew about the affair but hearing the other woman's name come out of Brittany's mouth shocked her regardless.
"No! What? Of course not! I'm not trying to send any sort of cryptic message Brittany I seriously don't remember anything!"
With a nod Brittany pulled away and stormed back to their bedroom slamming the door, Santana sat bewildered for a moment before she jumped up and followed closing the door carefully behind her to find her wife standing at the far side of the room practically seething. She understood that it was worrying and frightening but she didn't understand why Brittany's default reaction here was anger.
"I need to be alone now Santana." She growled and for the first time in a long time Santana saw real anger in her blue eyes but she refused to move.
"No. I obviously said something wrong and I don't need you to storm out mad I need you to tell me what's wrong."
The blonde gave her a hard stare, "You are unbelievable! You don't know what you said wrong?" Santana reluctantly shook her head, "Well try this on for size I'm pregnant and my wife just told me she doesn't remember stopping her affair with her coworker!"
Realization washed over her and suddenly she understood her wife's anger, "Maybe I don't remember it but I certainly don't regret it stopping it never should have happened in the first place."
"It's not just that! You promised it would never happen again! You promised! And we talked and worked through it and now you are telling me you don't remember that?"
"Yes, but if that is what I said I meant every word."
Brittany rolled her eyes in exasperation and moved to leave the room angrily grabbing for the door knob but Santana threw her weight against the door not letting the blonde escape, "I get how this sounds but you have got to understand that I am so lost right now. I don't remember our conversations but I can tell you that me and my… I don't know other self? Subconscious maybe? Agree on the same things. It was a mistake from the start and will never ever happen again, you have to understand that nothing I am saying now is in any way negating that. I love you so much and I am so happy you ever loved me enough after what happened to want another baby, but something is wrong with my head. I think I may have blacked out or something and I need you to be with me through this or I won't make it." She pleaded because she needed Brittany to understand, she couldn't have the joy of finally having her family back to have it taken away. That was just one thing too many on top of everything else.
It was clear that Brittany hadn't been overly moved by the speech but she had at least stopped trying to make moves to get out of the door, or she had temporarily quit because Santana had a vice grip on the knob.
"I really thought all of this was already behind us, that's where I want it to go and stay because every time I think about it and look at you it makes me feel bad in every way there is to feel bad."
"I want it behind us too and it can be."
"It can't if you don't remember anything! What's changed Santana? If the whole year hasn't happened for you then what has changed? You never even really told me why you slept with Selena you just danced around the issue and I was so desperate to just let it go I didn't even question it but now whatever it was that happened can happen again and just like before I won't know until it's too late!" she shouted and Santana prayed the girls were either outside or watching television with the volume up. Something with lots of explosions.
Santana took a deep breath and steadied herself to do something she wanted to do about as much as she wanted to luge naked on a cheese grater, "Nothing has changed." She said and took a firm grip of Brittany's arms to keep her from escaping before she had a chance to explain herself, "I've wanted it to be over from the moment it started." Santana took another breath because now was the time to bare it all, "I don't know why I didn't tell you what actually happened before but I will now and I need you to listen no matter how hard it is to hear."
Fear whirled in her blue eyes but Brittany nodded all the same, "Okay." Her voice was low and hoarse.
Santana moved to the bed to sit down and her wife joined her shortly looking skittish and unwillingly curious. A long silence fell as she organized her words in her head and after a moment she turned and looked straight into Brittany's eyes and spoke even though that was the last place she wanted to rest her eyes when telling this story.
"When the affair happened I was feeling like I was in a place that I didn't want to be, but it wasn't how things were here. It was the squad and Nationals, it was Sue's fucked up mind games, and mostly it was my own insecurities about being able to do everything on my own. I was scared that I wouldn't keep winning and then how in the world would I be able to keep getting money, how would I keep my job and that led me to worry about how I would provide for the four of us. I know it seemed like I just resented having children but from the first moment I saw Violet there was nothing further from the truth, I was just afraid of failing. Failing you and them. I…" she faltered for a moment, no matter how she steeled herself saying this to Brittany made her feel like she was trying to gut herself with a butter knife, "I went to Selena for advice at first, just to try and get her input on what to do about the way I was feeling, but the more I talked to her the more she convinced me that I was truly unhappy with you and the kids. That what I was feeling wasn't stress but the telltale signs of a failing marriage. Somewhere in the middle of it all I started to believe that sex with her would somehow get rid of all my problems, that somehow it would fix something, anything. But when I did all I realized was how much of a mistake it was, because when it was over you weren't there to hold me and I didn't see that look in your eyes after we make love. That look that only someone who has known you for years can give, someone who has been there through the good and the bad and loved you every minute of it. I regretted even talking to her the moment I had done it and I just wanted to walk away then but she had no intention of letting me go that easily."
She paused to take a breath suddenly aware that she was crying and that Brittany was as well, but the other woman did not speak, she waited patiently for her to continue her eyes never moving from Santana's.
"She threatened to tell you about the two of us if I didn't continue to see her and honestly the smart thing to do would have been to come clean about the whole thing and end it there but… Brittany I am not making any excuses or trying to pass the blame, you just need to understand I was so terrified of losing you. I mean it made me literally sick when I thought of you finding out and then I started thinking that you would not only leave me but take the kids as well and…" she needed to take another breath, even the memories of those thoughts gave her chills, "I was stuck with her because of a stupid, stupid mistake and the irony of it all was sleeping with her was the thing that made me realize how I couldn't live without you. I don't remember the past few months but I can tell you that if they have me getting rid of her and coming clean to you then clearly whatever happened with my head was a good thing. "
Brittany finally broke her gaze and wiped at her steadily streaming eyes, "Why didn't you tell me that when we talked about this before?"
"I don't know, I don't remember but it was the truth then and it's the truth now and no matter what I forget or when it will never happen again. Even if I forget this conversation." Her chest was so tight it was hard to get air in and despite all the insanity that was her life at the moment suddenly the only important thing that existed was to keep Brittany at her side.
"Santana you've been acting so strange lately, you keep saying it's not me it's you but then you do something that proves the opposite. You finally talked me into wanting to have another baby again and I thought this time you really wanted one but during the baby shower you seemed so sad and apparently yesterday you just forgot it all." she sobbed rubbing her eyes. "I used to know you so well, I used to know everything you were thinking and now I have no idea what to expect from one second to the next."
Santana took her tearful face in her hands and peppered kisses on her tear stained face, "I know and I'm sorry. I'll do whatever it takes to get us back on track, I'm going to see a doctor and I'll see a team of doctors if that doesn't work. I'll tell you what I'm feeling all the time until you can go back to knowing for yourself, anything Brittany."
The saddest blue eyes in the world stared back at her as her wife asked, "Tell me one thing, and please be honest with me." Santana nodded swiftly, "Do you want this child?"
She could see the worry on her wife's face and it reminded her all over again how badly she had fucked up her marriage that Brittany would ever have to question that. Smiling genuinely pressed a hand to the blonde's toned stomach and pushed gently guiding her down on the bed before leaning over and kissing her gently on the neck, "Of course I do, how could I not? The woman I love is having my baby and I couldn't be happier."
Brittany gently cupped her face and looked deep into her eyes ceasing her oral explorations of her neck and chest though clearly from the flushed look in her face and her heavy breathing the action was getting to her.
"Before you told me no almost constantly though, why?"
Santana sat back hating that they had to switch back to extremely serious talk, "Because… I was still dealing with not being intimate with you and trying to rid myself of Selena and I couldn't see fitting another child into the middle of that."
"You stopped sleeping with me because you had her?" the question was part confusion part hurt.
"No I stopped sleeping with you because I couldn't stand to see that look I love so much and know I was betraying you. I wanted you so badly but I couldn't bring myself to touch you anymore not after being with that woman."
Brittany closed her eyes for a moment and Santana wished desperately that she was a mind reader, "I'm still a bit confused about when this affair actually started and ended…" Santana opened her mouth to say something but she held up a hand, "And I really don't want to know. All I need to hear from you is that it won't happen again, not just with Selena but with anyone."
"It won't." she replied almost instantly, "Never again."
"You said that before."
"I meant it before."
Brittany looked at her for a moment and then surprisingly fresh tears fell down her face, "San I'm still scared."
In almost a panic Santana wiped them away searching blue eyes for some hint as to what to do, "Scared of what?"
"I'm scared I'll do something to make you leave me again, I'm scared you mean what you're saying now and won't later. I mean what if you just go back to her and forget and then you're leading a double life you don't even remember and…"
Santana silenced her with a brief kiss, "Trust is a big deal with us right now I understand and I know it won't be resolved overnight but I will do everything in my power to make sure you never have a reason to doubt me."
"You said that before too."
Santana smiled, "Looks like no matter what I remember how I feel is the same."
She nodded seeming slightly reassured, "Why did you tell Puck and not me?"
"I don't know, everything was weird but apparently you knew about… what happened and you were still there with me and I didn't want to rock the boat so to speak."
"Next time talk to me." She said seriously.
Santana nodded and nuzzled the crook of Brittany's neck almost crying in relief as her wife held her close.
There was a brief knock at the door and Violet's voice filtered through, "Sanny! I want to go to the park! Ella said she wants to go too!"
A muffled, "No I didn't!" followed.
"Ella did not say she wanted to go but has come with me to the door to ask to go the park so is a part of the Let's Go To the Park movement!" Violet amended.
Brittany chuckled and Santana couldn't help but smile into her wife's chest, "How do you feel about a trip to the park?"
"You must be forgetting more than the last few months if you have to ask." Brittany said lightly slapping Santana's arm playfully.
A/N: Over frigging whelming response on my tumblr not only demanding more but demanding it here so... here it is.