Lean on Me

Self-Absorbed Author's Ramblings: Hey y'all, I'd like to say, that before you read this, know that I'm going to be changing a few things because I, (probably like a bunch of other people) wasn't satisfied with the I Kissed A Girl episode.

This picks up just after where Mash-Off left off. I'll be juggling the POVs of Brittany and Santana, but I'll also be using Quinn. Why? Because unlike the Glee writers, I think that Quinn and Brittany should have been there for Santana after what happened. They're her closest friends. The Unholy Trinity. In my opinion, they should be the ones that supported Santana, and the episode should have revolved around them and not Finn "the Hero" Hudson.

People who're all for Finn, listen to me when I say this: Let's agree to disagree, and just close this tab. Okay? I have the same message for Pelby fans, thanks.

Now I won't be writing out an entire episode, and y'all just mix this into what's cannon to you as you see fit.

Also, this isn't going to be that long-running. (So those who know me from way-back and are aware of my track record with long-running stories, you can breathe). This will probably be two or three chapters long. Four tops. I already have the story arc planned out. It's going to focus, basically on Santana's problem/s, Brittany's love (heeee) and Quinn's (and the others') friendship. Yay :D

ONE LAST NOTE THEN YOU CAN FINALLY READ: I'm not completely satisfied with this title. If someone can suggest something better, let me know so I can consider it.

Chapter One

The slap was loud, the sound of it reverberating throughout the auditorium. In the stunned silence that followed, it still seemed to be ringing in Quinn's ears. For a moment, probably the first time in a long time, all thoughts of Beth and Shelby were driven from her mind as she gaped at Santana, who was standing stock still before Finn and Rachel.

Tearing her gaze away from Santana, Quinn looked at Finn. The quarterback literally just stared, his hand on his cheek. Looking elsewhere, Quinn realized that everyone else, too, was really just staring. It was like no one knew what to do next. No one knew what Santana would do next.

Since their loss in Nationals, everyone knew just how dangerous and fiery Santana could be when enraged. And strong. Quinn herself had experienced first hand what kind of struggle could be faced against the strength Santana had despite her relatively small frame. Would they be experiencing that again soon? Was this just the beginning? Was Santana just getting geared up to go all Lima Heights on Finn Hudson?

Quinn tensed in her seat, preparing herself to leap to her feet and rush between the two if it came to that. Rachel Berry was closest, and Quinn doubted the small girl would be much use against the rage mode Santana had once dubbed Snix. Artie was also pretty nearby, but he would be even less helpful than Berry. Kurt… well he probably wasn't much stronger than Berry, too.

As frustrated as she could be with Finn sometimes, and as hard as it was to get along with Santana sometimes, Quinn didn't want either of them hurt.

Santana's face was a twisted mixture of rage and pain and… it almost looked like fear. Her hands had now curled into tight fists, and that was not a good sign.

Finally, someone broke the silence. "Santana…" It was a soft whisper, but in the silence filling the auditorium, it might as well have been a shout. Brittany was stepping off of the stage and approaching her.

What happened next was so fast, Quinn had worried that Santana would take her rage out on Brittany.

With a sound somewhere between a scream and a growl, Santana had lunged towards Brittany, seizing her by the shoulders. But instead of pushing, or attacking, or doing any of the things Quinn was fearing, Santana simply yelled, "Everything's ruined!"

"No, it's not." Brittany, who looked like the sudden movement had shocked her too, recovered quickly and spoke in a firm voice. Moving at a carefully slow pace, Brittany raised her hands from her sides and held Santana's arms. "Everything's not ruined. It's going to be okay."

"Everybody already knew, it's not a big deal!" Finn, who seemed to have recovered from the shock of the slap was now standing up from his seat, eyes locked on Santana. "I mean look at Kurt and Blaine, them being gay's not a big deal in Glee club coz we accept that kind of stuff."

"You don't get it, you truckload of lard!" Santana snapped, pulling away from Brittany. "None of you mouth-breathing brain-deprived clones of Dumb and Dumber get it."

Before anyone else could react, Santana fled.

Brittany had been right there. She'd seen it all up close. This wasn't Santana being angry. This was very very different. The way she moved, the way she spoke was off. It wasn't like all those other times that Santana had been irritable, or dealing with that time of the month, or expressing her annoyance towards Finn, Rachel and anyone else in Glee, (who she tended to have a love-hate relationship with).

"What's gotten into her?" Sugar wondered out loud, giving voice to the question everyone else in the auditorium might have had in their heads.

They may not know, but Brittany did. After getting over the shock of Santana's latest outburst, she ran after her girlfriend. Because her girlfriend needed her.

Pushing past students walking along the hallway, Brittany kept her neck and back stretched out, as far above the crowd as she could get, taking advantage of her height to look out for Santana.

Brittany caught a brief glimpse of the black dress before a large jock blocked her view. Picking up speed, she barely noticed that she'd thrown off her heeled shoes as she dodged people and backpacks and opened locker doors. Somewhere in the back of her mind, Brittany registered that voices were calling her name. Deeming the calls as subordinate to the current situation, she ignored them.

Finding the path familiar, Brittany guessed where Santana was headed. It wasn't that odd of a place to choose to go to. At this time, it would be empty. And as a general rule, people seemed to avoid it lest they be contaminated by what they seemed to think was the un-cool aura of the area.

After running at top speed, Brittany slowed her pace, nearing her destination: the choir room.

It only took a quick scan of the room to spot Santana curled up in the farthest corner, behind the drum set. Her back was pressed against the wall while her arms wrapped around her legs and her head rested on her knees.

Scared of spooking her into running away again, Brittany called out to her in what she hoped was a soft, soothing whisper. "San… It… It's Britt… I'm here."

Hearing no reply, Brittany moved closer, hoping that it wouldn't do more harm. Seeing Santana like this was tearing her apart. All she wanted to do right now was hold her crying girl and tell her that everything was going to be okay. That she'd make it all okay.

"Santana…" Brittany tried to find the right words to say as she knelt down next to Santana, who was visibly trembling. What she had told Brittany earlier, just before their performance was resounding in her head. The commercial that had been described to her, it was only being played in her imagination right now, but by the end of the week, it would be playing in everyone's TV's.

Brittany could keep Lord Tubbington's TV off, but she couldn't do the same to Santana's family or McKinley students… or anyone else.

"Britt…" Santana's voice was a barely audible sob. It hurt Brittany to hear it.

This time, Brittany didn't hesitate. Without another word, she wrapped her arms around Santana, pulling her close. The comfort and hope Brittany wanted to give but couldn't find the words to express, she hoped she could convey through the embrace.

Instead of pulling away, Santana moved closer, taking her arms from her legs and wrapping them around Brittany's waist. "It… it's… it's all going to change, Britt." Santana gasped out these words before burying her face into Brittany's shoulder.

"Maybe it'll change for the better, San." Brittany tried to be optimistic. "Maybe it won't be so bad."

"I d-don't know…" Santana's doubt was obvious.

"I'm not sure either…" Brittany tried again, running her fingers through Santana's dark hair as she did so. "But what I am sure of though is that your friends… your real friends will love you just the same. And that it's not a big deal for them."

The deep breath Santana took was one that Brittany didn't miss. Then with teary eyes, Santana met Brittany's. It took a great deal of self-control not to break down then and there. Now was when Santana needed her to be strong.

"Britt… You… you do love me back… right?"

"Of course I do!" Brittany moved her face closer to Santana's, so that their foreheads touched. "I love you, Santana. I've told you that before, and I'll tell you a million times more and more than that, I just don't know what numbers are after that."

As if of its own accord, a smile tugged at Santana's lips. "I think billion comes after."

"Is infinity more than billion?" Encouraged, Brittany put her palms along Santana's jawline and stroked those beautifully defined cheekbones.

This time, she got a short laugh out of Santana. "Yeah, I think so."

"Then I'll tell you infinity times. As many times as you need to hear it. I love you, more than I've ever loved anyone else in this world. Don't you ever forget it, okay?"

"Okay." Santana replied, keeping brown eyes locked on blue ones.

Briefly, warmth filled Brittany. They would get through this. The nightmare would not last any longer. Santana would go home and tell her parents the truth and they would accept her and everything would be okay. McKinley wouldn't care that Santana wasn't into guys and was actually in love with a girl. The head cheerleader would still be strutting down hallways, turning heads and demanding respect. Finally, they would be able to hold hands anywhere and flirt and kiss just like the other couples always did.

Everything would be okay.

The illusion seemed to fade with Santana's smile. The fear in those deep brown eyes was back.

Santana moved her face away from Brittany's, but didn't break away from the embrace. "Am I a coward?"

"Why would you think that?" Brittany cocked her head to one side. "You're one of the bravest people I know."

Words seemed to be lost to Santana as her eyes dropped to the floor and she shook her head. Soon, she was back to sobbing with her face on Brittany's shoulder.

It was then that someone interrupted them. "What's going on?"

Brittany looked up, recognizing Quinn. Opening her mouth to speak, she was about to respond to Quinn when Santana's grip on her waist tightened, changing whatever Brittany was going to say into a gasp.

"Just leave me alone." Santana mumbled.

Quinn looked from Brittany to Santana, the concern and confusion clear on her face. For a few moments, she hesitated, looking like she was torn between doing what Santana told her to do and offering the comfort that their mutual friend needed. Green eyes met blue, reflecting the same distress.

"Santana…" Quinn tried.

"Don't you have something better to do? Like more crunches to work out that fat you gained after you went Juno?"

Quinn rolled her eyes, and Brittany was glad that she wasn't the only one who knew Santana didn't always mean the things she said. Especially when she was upset.

"Look…" Quinn took a seat on the floor next to them. "I know I've been…" There was a short pause that Quinn took to choose her words. "…distant lately." That was putting it mildly. The former captain of the Cheerios had barely spoken to them, even after she'd gotten over her Skanks phase and rejoined Glee. It was Puck she'd only really ever talk to, and it was always like Quinn was tense and irritable. That had only gotten worse when Brittany and Santana left New Directions.

"Huh." Santana refused to face Quinn, instead keeping her face on Brittany's shoulder.

"But… I'm… I'm here for you now." Quinn tentatively reached out a hand and placed it on Santana's shoulder.

"A lot of good it'll do." Santana grumbled, lifting her head and shaking Quinn's hand off before facing her. "Aren't you afraid of being a third wheel? I'm pretty sure you already know, since Finn's convinced that everyone already knew."

"Is this about you and Brittany?" Quinn arched one eyebrow upwards.

"Congratulations! You're not as much of an idiot as your ex-orca."

Brittany felt bad for Quinn, who was only trying to help. What Santana was doing just wasn't very nice. Right now probably wasn't the best time to talk to her about her words though.

Quinn let out a frustrated sigh, "I'm not going to lie. I've always gotten the idea that there might be more to you two than just friendship…" She shrugged, turning to Brittany, "And I guess… after you and Artie broke up, it became more obvious and we sort of just… guessed?"

Santana didn't say anything, surprising Brittany by instead just moving closer and leaning against her shoulder. "This sucks."

"What does Finn have to do with it though?"

"He proclaimed it in the hallway and some nosy little bitch told her uncle candidate. And now they're going to air a campaign commercial that sends me flying out of the closet, complete with a fucking rainbow explosion." Instead of a stream of burning, angry yells, the words came out soft, defeated.

"I… I didn't know…" was all Quinn could say.

"Santana… Honey, look at me." Brittany hated seeing Santana so crushed. There had to be a way out of this mess. There had to be. And Brittany would find it. Whatever it took, she would get Santana through this.

With a sigh, Santana moved so she and Brittany were face to face. Seeing the tears running down those cheeks felt like knives stabbing and twisting into her chest. Brittany swallowed before she spoke. "You'll get through this. It's going to get better. Trust me…"

"P-Parents…" Santana looked like she was going to try and say more, but she stopped. Leaving it at that, she tilted her head downwards, her hair falling like a black curtain that blocked their view of her face.

"Maybe they'll understand…" Quinn moved closer to them and began stroking Santana's back. This time, Santana didn't recoil.

"I'm… I'm…" Santana laughed bitterly. "God, I hate having to admit it out loud." Brittany and Quinn exchanged glances, and decided to encourage Santana to continue by remaining silent.

It was a brief wait before Santana lifted her head and said, "I'm scared. I'm scared of how everything's going to change. I'm scared of how people will look at me different, of what they'll say behind my back. I'm… I'm fucking terrified of having to tell my parents." Groaning, Santana added, "And I feel like a coward for it. Mount Whale called me a coward and I hate him for being right." That last part was shouted out.

"Santana Lopez, listen to me." Making her voice firm, Brittany placed her hands on the other girl's face. "You are not a coward. You're scared, but you're not a coward. You have fears, but you're going to face those fears. You're stronger than you think. I believe in you Santana. I still do, and I always will."

It was going to be okay.

S-A.A.R.:I'm working on the next chapter, and hopefully it'll be up tomorrow. If I get a review or two at least. Oh, and even if I know what's going to happen next, I'd like to know what y'all think: IS it going to be okay? Are you feeling as optimistic as Brittany?

Oh, and I know Santana's POV wasn't shown here. Don't worry, it'll be in the next chapter. :)