disclaimer: don't own no tv shows,wouldn't be writing such presumptuous fanfics if i did.
dedication: st. fabray - i have loved you for eons, you are delectable crack and i weep to know that you will never freaking happen because the writers are assholes.
warning: language...or something?
notes: never in all my days did i think myself crazy enough to want to write a glee fic, but crack ships have a way of clawing me into the fandom against my will. also, have you guys read 'return to sender, damaged in transit' fic written by smileysimmo? it is pure gold, not only as a crack ship fic, but as a glee fic in itself. the likes of this fic and flirt and flounce's wonderful 'the beauty queen' gave me the mojo to write what i could for this pair. they're absolutely brilliant, go check them out like naow bro.
even moar notes: this was meant to be a one-shot but it became too big and bogged down so i just halved/quartered it, it's not so much a multichapter fic as a three-part. i'm also supposed to be studying for some srs bizness midterm exams at uni, but we all know that education is overrated. duh. it is freaking difficult to write jesse, and even more difficult to write 'not angry' quinn now that she's grown out of her rage. anyway, fingers crossed that this doesn't suck too much.




Jesse is like a breath of hollywood, all cutting wit and jazzy smiles. Something that's slid fresh off the dancefloor or a broadway stage, with his perfect hair and his brilliant blue eyes and you want to know - you want to know what the infuriating thing is? The really infuriating thing is that he knows it.

Quinn hates that, because even though she kind of admires his unfailing ability to have complete confidence in himself no matter how much suck the world may give him, she hates that she doesn't have anything remotely close to that anymore. She's fallen off that pedestal, failed the perfect expectations she'd marked out for herself, got knocked up , couldn't keep her baby and had the honor of still being referred to as Quinn 'spread-em' Fabray. The sheer amount of suck the world has given Quinn is ridiculously on a level that she knows no one deserves.

And really, Quinn figures, with his pretty boy looks and gene-kelly face the world probably doesn't give Jesse enough suck to really count either way. See, she knows, Quinn used to think she was infallible too, once.

She doesn't know how the hell he does it, though. Waltzing back into McKinley with his 'look-at-me-I-won-four-consecutive-national-titles' cockyness, knowing they all practically hate his guts, waltzing into their music room like he isn't a college drop out who couldn't cope. Like he isn't a goddam idiot for falling for a drag queen like Rachel.

Forget that. Rachel and Jesse are perfect for eachother, actualy. They're both obnoxious divas, sing with over dramatic flourish and whilst Rachel has to shut her eyes tight to squeeze her tears through for that little extra emotion for the judges and has insecurities common place with the mentaly freakin' insane - Jesse, well, Jesse is all glamour and charm and he doesn't look like he gives two shits about what anyone thinks about him. He doesn't need to be told he's great, oh no; Jesse St. James knows he's hot shit already.

You've got to envy that kind of courage, no matter how bizzarely stupid it is.

Rachel needs support, her fan base, to wring Finn's hand in hers and for him to look up at her with his chimp like adoration. Whilst Jesse just deals with the break up with a kind of dignity that Quinn hates him for, coming forward all battered like Marlon Brandon from 'On the Waterfront' like the tough guy, the good guy when it's all his fault, Quinn fumes, it's all Jesse St. fucking James fault for coming back that Finn finaly realises he's still in love with fucking Berry. If Jesse had just not come back to Lima, then maybe Quinn could have actually held on to her boyfriend for once, then Quinn wouldn't have to loose to Rachel -of all people - again, then maybe - just freakin' maybe Quinn would have accomplished something, like being Prom Queen. Because if she couldn't accomplish that in measly Nowhere-Lima, then how could she accomplish anything, ever?

He sits next to her on the bleachers, arms propped over his knees, jacket awry.

Quinn is so angry, all that pent-up-bitch in her is just so goddam tired of this bullshit. How do these people do it? How do these people just coil themselves around every facet of her life and turn it all to shit?

"Still here?" He says, she can hear the smirk in his voice. She would have punched him in the face if he'd been sitting closer. He's uncannily bitter when she turns her glare sharply on him, his mouth twisted up in one of those sardonic smiles.

Quin clenches her fists on her knees, the train of her dress gathered in folds over her lap like so much tafetta. She's kicked her heels off, they're somewhere in an angry pile on the ground. "Still in Lima, yeah."

"Huh. It is a little crap town isn't it?"

Then why the hell did you come back to it? She would have snapped, but she won't take the bait, she won't loose it in front of theatre-pig . The night air nips at her bare arms, and her hair's a mess. It takes all of her not to bite back in all her brittle rage, she's cool as ice Quinn Fabray, she can keep the face on and cut with words. "It was perfect until you showed up and ruined everything, again."

Jesse laughs, he has this older boy charm about him. Like he's so much smarter than her and it makes Quinn seethe.

"Right. Because Hudson is such a prized commodity."

She returns with an acid smile on her lips "Rachel sure as hell chose him over you, didn't she?"

And there. His jaw tightens, and his eyes are focused ahead of him. She's right. Quinn can give just as good as she damn well gets, two can play at this game. Quinn has been a bitch for far longer than he can hope to dream, she can fuck him over with her remarks almost as bad as he and Rachel have singlehandedly screwed her over. But never enough, nothing in words will ever make up for this. It was supposed to be her and Finn, this was supposed to be her year, after the baby. This was supposed to work out for Quinn.

"You're a bitter little thing aren't you?" His smiles never seem...rude, and she can't always say that they reach his eyes, but they're always so belittling. "I can't imagine why you'd be hung up on that enormous buffoon."

"Yeah, I forgot that you're so commendable in choosing obnoxious Berry to fall hard for, right?" Quinn wants to nothing more than to go home and cry into her pillow, to scream there into her bedspread. She can be weak there. Here she's Quinn Fabray, uptight and impenetrable, but her feet hurt, and her throat feels like she's got a golf ball stuck there and prom has been a disaster. "I can see the appeal, you're both so alike."

"You mean talented," Jesse says airily, "Well, yes, in that aspect we do so match don't we? But you, Quinn? And mediocre Hudson? I thought you'd value yourself a little more."

"You of all people do not get to talk to me about self-worth."

"Just saying," he shrugs, indifferent to all her venom. "You won't be able to hold onto dignity if you keep hanging onto the neandrathal."

"Take your own advice." Quinn replies as cattily as she can. She has a feeling Santana would smile. "Rachel will always put herself above you, above everyone. And yet, I bet you anything you'll still come crawling back to her with the same male bravado wanting her back. You're the same as any other boy."

"Oh," Jesse exhales and it sounds like laughter, soft like that. "I'm nothing like your Lima boys, Quinn. Certainly not the ones you've been dating, I don't crawl back, ever."

Give me a goddamn break.

"I'm tired of this," Quinn mutters. Jesse shrugs, locks of brown hair falling perfectly about his stupid perfect face that she would give anything to just fucking punch. "I'm so tired of this whole fucking deal."

"You're feeling sorry for yourself, Grace."

She laughs in his face, and he smiles back in that indulgent reminder that he's mocking her. Quinn is exasperated beyond belief, she wants to laugh till she cries, her chest hurts and what the hell. All this always happens to her. Even if he's right, she deserves to feel sorry for herself for once, for everything she's lost and everything she's sure she most certainly will never have now. She rubs at her eyes and slumps over, face in her hands, her mascara is probably smudged as hell but she doesn't care anymore. Caring tired her out these days, it just took too much. She can still hear the music from prom outside, she hates it. She hates how she slapped Rachel and been the one to burst out crying, with Rachel again looking like the victim, even though it was all her fucking fault. She hates how everyone always sees her at her worst.

Jesse doesn't say anything as she takes her shuddering breaths, feeling like Lucy Caboose all over again, trying to hold those tears back. They always said she was even uglier when she cried and Quinn Fabray does not cry, Quinn Fabray is not a weak fat shit that cries infront of people who'd kill for a chance to tear her down like Jesse St. James.

Something about having someone there calms her though, even if it is Jesse. Even if he is a prick, he doesn't say anything, and he's not malicious either. He just replies to her bitchiness with snideness, unbothered by her mostly as if she were a child experiencing a tantrum rather than a crisis. He doesn't twist in his seat and smother her like Finn would with worry, or cringe in awkwardness like Puck would, or with tenative requests for knowing her well-being like sweet stupid Sam would. Sam who had been good for her, Puck who hadn't been, and Finn who was not smart enough for her to have trouble controlling.

It scares her, not having control. So she struggles, and when she takes one last deep breath and straightens out, spine elongating as her posture corrects itself Quinn can keep the tears at bay for long enough to reach home she's sure.

"You don't seem to upset." She accuses softly.

"I'm not." He lies with that foolhardy confidence again, leaning back as if the world's at his feet and as if she hadn't just almost had a breakdown in front of him. "Don't get me wrong, it's pretty dissapointing that this has been overlooked for some Lima bean boy like Finn. Hey, Rachels' got talent, and if she's gonna go places, she doesn't need someone like Finn holding her down to this crap town." He looks at her again, smile wry and sincere. "You're a smart girl, Quinn. You know what you want and how you're going to get it, Finn's not going to take you out of Lima. Finn is Lima. No one's going to slow you down, you never let them. Hey, you're a bit of a bitch, but you're smart and just how hard you're taking not winning Prom Queen tells me how you don't take anyone getting in your way with ease. Someone's knocked the stars out of your eyes and you can see that, Rachel just doesn't know it."

She's taken aback. She's not sure to be flattered that he knows what she's capable of, or insulted that he's comparing her to Berry of all people. She doesn't want to acknowledge either, it's too wierd and embarrassing, and Quinn doesn't do awkward heart-to-hearts and she's pretty sure Jesses doesn't either.

"I need to get out of here." Quinn mutters. She stands, scooping up her shoes, hair tickling her cheeks as it makes itself unmanageable in the rustling breeze that's been lurking around the area.

Jesse stands, it's absurd. It's like he's being a gentleman or something, it's so old-fashioned, so far from the insolent boys she knows. "You have a ride?"

"Yes." Quinn lies, straight faced, brow raised haughtily.

He looks doubtful, temple furrowed before he winces and realises it hurts to move his face. "Finn's already left."

She swallows, she'd predicted as much. "And?"

He smiles a little slyly. "Well, didn't you come in with him?" When his eyes land on the corsage still knotted around her wrist, the red in her face is angry despite the cold. "I doubt your cheerio skirts are sober enough to take you back home."

"Spare me the patronising gentlemanly act, ." Quinn hisses. She leaves as coldly as she can, shoes in one hand, train in the other as she goes down the bleachers and onto the field. Her bare feet press against the ground, and the grass tickles her heels damply. Despite the booze and humidity of the school gym where the prom had been the music and the stupidity of highschool, the cold ground is a comfort almost. It's breathable.

Quinn doesn't need anyone's help. She doesn't look back, and he doesn't follow her.

Santana isn't too drunk, and even if the turns they make make Quinn think she's about to die in a fiery car crash she still tugs her fingers around her seatbelt and grits her teeth and bears it. Just like she bears everything that's ever happened to her anyway. Santana's crazy driving over sharing a car with obnoxious Jesse St. James and feeling like she freaking owes him or something? It's worth the risk.

Quinn falls in with the wrong kind of people, and no one expects that. She gets a piercing, takes to pink highlights and combat boots and looks like an extra out of a bad highschool movie, which is perfectly fine by her. The people who are with her aren't afraid of what she's done, and they're crass and crazy and more than certainly delusional - Quinn remembers what she used to think about such people, and what she most probably still does, they're the outcasts who have an attitude problem who can't cope - But Quinn copes, these people get her. She's bad now, just as bad as everyone didn't expect her to be. No more chastity club, no more cheerios, no more caring about anything.

She used to think smoking disgusting, but now she does it under the bleachers everyday.

People don't dare slushy her anymore, her crew protects her, they're an aggressive buffer and when people see her walking she could smack the permanent gawking they do off their faces before they get the hell out of her way.

She should have known it couldn't last. See, Rachel Berry is a stupid girl and if anyone is bound to throw themselves in your way, it's her. The sheer inevitability of this is retarded.

Quinn does not apreciate being pulled out of her niche, doesn't apreciate this 'good will' gesture from good fucking will Berry and her diva complex.

But she does it, in the end. For Beth.

"Sometimes you have to crash and burn before you make something of yourself," Sam says next to her, scooping yams onto extended plastic plates. He smiles and Quinn doesn't feel like scowling, she smiles back. The whole year has been a crazy journey, and she...well, she's young and there's so much more out there than being Prom Queen. For once in her life Quinn just wants to be a teenager, she just wants the fun of being young. "And you're good at that, Q."

She laughs, "The crashing and burning?"

"Well, that's not what I meant." And there's that smile Sam does with all his teeth that Quinn really misses and Santana says makes him look even more like a trouty mouthed albino even if he is white such lips can only be found on a brother, he's a good friend. "You're good at the after too, the picking yourself up part. This part right now. I'm glad you're doing well. I'm glad you're here."

And somehow the New Directions sweep in with turkey, and they sing and they eat homeless people food and somehow everything is alright.

Everything is perfect, a page taken out of a stylish spring magasine, the perfect wedding. The world is laced in white, and the Berry's knew no limits with the budget for the affair - when she passes into the church, confetti falls like snow, peppered in Quinn's hair like snowflakes and frost even though it's a spring wedding.

Finn looks almost dashing in his suit, and Rachel has lillies in her hair. Quinn hadn't aproved of the match, and Kurt had aggreed with her, going so far as to ask the former cheerleader whether she would boycott the event. Quinn had sighed and shaken her head, she didn't aprove, and she probably never would - she, of all people, knew they were too young to take on the grown up responsibilites that where supposed to be life long - but it was too tiring to be the naysayer, the antagonist of the story. She showed up and took a seat within the stalls but had drawn the line at being a bridesmaid. That was a step she wasn't willing to take, Kurt however had caved in at the sight of lace ruffles and blue sashes and became the position along Mercedes, Brittany and Tina.

"God, don't look now but they're going to start sucking face." Santana drawled and Quinn elbowed her lightly. That did nothing to admonish the bitch. "The only reason I refused the tafetta posturing upfront with Asianfoo, Whitney and Britt was because I didn't want a closer look at that, I'll take second row over being within touching distance of that tongue action."

"So you're okay with this?"

"It's her life, whatever." Santana rolls her eyes. "Even though it won't be doing anything for the gene pool, I'm looking forward to neandrathal jews with buckteeth beaver faces and delusions of Barbera Streisand grandeur. They know what they're getting into, it's none of my business. What, you still green Q?"

Quinn smiled tightly as the couple said their vows, she saw Rachel's beautific smile and Finn's awkward grin and even though they looked like idiots, and Finn was her ex and Rachel her sort of friend who'd been the bane of Quinn's existence in a way that was just not cool...she kind of thought they deserved eachother, they went good together. That didn't make the pill any harder to swallow, but she was sure she wasn't bitter about it for selfish reasons, this situation is too adult, too old for them - why get married now? What if it doesn't work out? She doesn't want anyone to make the huge mistake she did, Beth is Quinn's mistake, even though she loves the baby with all her heart and soul, recognising that Beth wasn't hers hurt even worse, and it's still something Quinn has to get over, it will take time. She's just not sure if Finn and Rachel can handle the kind of regrets that come with taking such a big step, the kind of potholes they'll run into, it's not all just white confetti and fairy dust. Hell, look at how her mom and dad's marriage turned out.

Quinn twists the circlet of flowers around her wrist, a bundle of blue roses and navy ribbon to match the sundress she's got on. "No, I just...it's a huge deal, Santana."

"If they love each other, it should be fine."

"Sometimes love isn't enough." Quinn realises, and it sledgehammers through her like a bright brand new ideal that she's just suddenly found she's been carrying with her for months, a speckle of pure undulated truth that isn't all that cruel. It can be emancipating. That's what she'd been all about these days, that didn't necessarily make her a skeptic of love or a killer of romanticism, it was just that...love can't always hold everything together, sometimes you've got to get what you want as a person and realise yourself as an individual. What's so important about staying bonded to someone forever if you can't love yourself enough to let go of what you were and become something better? "Sometimes you've got to tough yourself out, you know? I know it sounds crazy and I hope it works out, but I just wish...they'd thought about it first."

"Q ctrl v-ing yourself and your regrets over all this doesn't make the worst true, okay? Hate to be the chipper bitch here, it doesn't do anything for me, but it's not all going to go to shit. Things don't work by freaking formula, Q, they don't always end the same damn way." Santana says as harshly nonchalant as ever "Jeez, all this monloguing deep shit?what's got you being all Hamlet today, where is all this self-reflection coming from? You're supposed to cry at weddings, right?"

But the sting the words are meant to slice out is soothed under the fact that Santana reaches out, and curls her fingers strongly around Quinn's. Her face doesn't change, it still looks boredly straight ahead, and Quinn stifles a watery smile. It'd been forever since they'd behaved like friends, and even though they'd once been besties, they'd still been bitchy and Santana had always 'borrowed' Quinn's shit and never returned them, occcasionaly this shit would also be boyfriends but Santana was always honest, an honest bitch and Quinn had missed it.

The violins come down, swooping and lifting and it's sickening how good it all fits, almost. Quinn bears it.

She doesn't like him. Jess St. James with his 'look-at-me-I'm-charming' smiles, his little conversations, the way his eyes glint intelligently in a way that tells her he isn't like any boy Quinn knows. He isn't a boy she can control or overwhelm with a cool glance. He's too smart. Too smooth. He's not going to rot away in Lima, he's not made for Ohio. Something about him screams 'New York! New York!' in a way she normally finds nauseating on Rachel, but on Jesse it glows and overpowers like it's written in his very bones. He doesn't have the sickening hopeful light of broadway stupidity in his eyes, only a smooth surity, a certainty and a self confidence that Quinn kind of admires and hates and is so unmatched by it's ridiculous.

She misses being like that, being so freaking invincible.

But then, she won't ever drop out of UCLA and she's never going to end up on the curb looking for a hero again. Finn had filled that job description for a while, but it wasn't enough, it will never be enough.

So yeah, maybe she's not the hot shit she once was. But that doesn't mean she'll be ready to take life lying down, she knows what she wants and she's going to grab onto it and hold onto it which is more than she can say for St. James.

She's there, and she will be there long after the reception is over he wagers, dwelling in the white wondrousness of it all, the flowers made out of blown sugar and how she hadn't wanted it to happen in the first place. Finding her twining the stem of a lilly between her fingers, the run-away princess standing among the ruins that could have been her fairytale, but she's not one for that, with her silver tongue and cold glances he knows that Quinn isn't anybody's princess. Not in this story.

As cheesy as it sounds, she intrigues him. God, just the sound of that word in his head already makes him feel like a creeper a la Edward Cullen, which is silly because just because she hasn't seen him doesn't mean he's creeping, per se. Yet...there's Quinn with her firm frown fixated on those stupid lilies, an ice queen with flowers in her hair.

They hadn't left off on the best of terms, the last time he'd seen her he'd had the shiner from hell and she was all potent prom queen rage and scorn striding away on the grass from the bleachers with her heels in her hands and hair falling across her back.

Nonetheless, your ex's wedding isn't exactly the most ideal locale to be making amends – and that's not something Jesse wants to do, he regrets nothing, ever – but she's there and he's there and he's guessing he's not the only one in need of a distraction because he'd been bored out of his mind attending this farce of a wedding and watching Rachel and Lima bean Hudson suck face.

"I'd have preferred dandelions," He mentions, and she turns suddenly, dress flirting in a twirl about her legs.

Quinn let's go of the flowers as if they'd shot her with electricity. His words sounds too loud in the now empty church and he sees various shifts fall over her face; startlement, confusion, too fast for him to catch.

"They'd be have been more fitting given that they scatter in the wind so easily, which would be a poignantly made point of how shortlived this whole arrangement is going to be."

Her face settles into icy indifference and at his sentiments she barely stops herself from rolling her eyes, but she does fold her arms, she's trussed up in a sundress blue and shifting around her legs – there's something...different about her. Something that he can't quite put his finger on. "St. James," she says in a cool huff. "you don't sound bitter at all."

He breaks out one of his big white grins, glowing confident and slick as hell. "I'm surprised you're here."

"I could say the same to you."

"Still carrying a torch for Finn?" Seriously, he will never understand what that guy has going for him other than that dopey dumb smile of his that made women's maternal instincts kick in to the point where it was nauseating. Finn was a phase, Jesse had thought, that Kentucky Clark Kent farm-boy phase that girls go through before they realize they're sick and tired of the mundane and want something different, glittering and perfect and brand new like a slice of Jesse St. James.

Her lashes shiver and her eyes they flash and glitter like cuts of diamond, she laughs shortly, like a wisened experienced thing that mocks young wide-eyed children, almost fond but no less condescending. "Oh, no, but I have to say I'm surprised yours for Rachel still burns so bright, it's kind of pathetic," she sighs nonchalantly, and Jesse doesn't like her tone, at all. Or how she says his name, what the hell happened to referring to him as 'asshole' or 'theatre pig' or the formal 'St. James' because he'll take formal cold Quinn in his confrontations over pitying wise Quinn and her Harvard degree any day. "What stopped you from objecting? I thought you lived for such petty theatrics."

He smiles tightly, putting the dimmer switch on his smile. "If I wanted Rachel, I'd have her."

He means it.

"Really?" She asks and takes steps forwards, slow and delicately, like a woman's prowl around a man she has so adequately unmanned. It's not malicious, but it isn't exactly friendly either. "Look, as much as I don't approve of this wedding, I'm not gonna let a snarky bitch ruin it."

"Oh, don't let me hold you back from yourself, Q."

Alright, that was childish. Jesse isn't used to not having the upperhand, and he gives just as good as he gets and if little miss cheerio with her puritan summer dress look and pretty mermaid hair trussed in elegant curls like she's some sort of good Christian girl who didn't get knocked up, posturing gracefully at him like a really really mean Betty Crocker wants to banter until the cows come home then Jesse is going to do so until those cows freaking come home.

She doesn't get to twine him around her perfectly manicured fingers, doesn't get to outsmart and belittle him like she can with her dumb boyfriends, Jesse is not a dumb boyfriend. Jesse is a single good looking pile of hot shit that's going to make it big. And Quinn isn't the perfect salvation Christian cheerio made flesh in the sun dress that shows off creamy legs either because - screw it, that is definitely not Christian, okay? Even if he can only see the curve of her calves and the dress is very well below knee, the curve of that ankle is most decidedly un-Christian and she doesn't get to call him out on pretending to be something he's not. He's not going to be doing her any favours either, because he knows the kind of girl Quinn is, she dazzles and possesses and uses her power over men and bleeds them dry like some weird suffrogate succubus and when she can't...when she freaking can't she decides she doesn't need them any more and goes on a Vajayjay powered superiority trip as part of some twisted feminist ploy to rule the world.

She isn't better than him. She doesn't get to be better than him. Her eyes are very warm for an ice cold bitch, the colour of honey and if he starest to deeply in them he's afraid he'll do something embarrassing like remind her of what colour they are.

She stares back at him at length, analysing, sizing him up and then Quinn states, coldly. "Only my friends call me that."

"What," Jesse smirks. "a snarky bitch?"

She rolls her eyes, exasperated and not willing to fall into another spat. He's disappointed in that, he likes seeing her claws, she was interesting, he wanted to see that wildly bitter girl that night at prom, with her white gold hair awry and her eyes wet and angry and striding barefooted across the grass. He liked that Quinn, that unrestrained blizzard breathing hurricane who wanted to cut him to pieces.

And then he realises something;

"You cut your hair," he breathes, suddenly aware of what he hadn't been able to pinpoint before. Her fingers spring up to tug at the strands as if she'd forgotten, for a moment he might imagine she looks self conscious. He tries not to look too wide eyed, but something about it makes it seem like the world's just sucker punched him and he's not sure what to make of it.

"What?" She prompts angrily, challenging him.

He smiles, the tension eases out of his body and man, he's a lover not a fighter really (actually, he hates that stupid phrase, to be a lover you have to fight for love, right? So you can't be a lover without being a fighter, otherwise all those West Side stories wouldn't really be as epic, would they now?) but whatever. It's a Saturday, he's wearing his favourite dress shoes and rocking a tux better than any Armani ass douche bag model could and do they really have to do this now? Fight? They're not in highschool anymore, and that'd been a lot for Jesse to take in before (hence the being-kicked-out-of UCLA issue) and he may be down on his game now but it's not gonna be for forever. Life's just starting, even for little miss Muffet over here with her Yale/Harvard/whatever future. He's getting back on his feet, so's she and can he really begrudge her for that? Don't get him wrong, he wants that hurricane in her eyes back full force and he can still see it there in her eyes, something banked and calm but still alive - and maybe he's starting to be a little vulnerable in his lack of white cells to combat Quinn's prom queen defence mechanistic bitch animosity, she still most probably holds a grudge so the fights not completely gone out of her, he's sure.

Rachel never fought him ever, she was always too eager to please, and too starry eyed. Quinn doesn't give a damn about what Jesse thinks, he's not her tutor/lover in the ways of theatre and he's pretty sure he has nothing that she needs. It's almost kind of...nice.

"It suits you, " he confesses, and even in honesty manages to look like the smuggest asshole that ever smirked. "It's refreshing actually."

Rachel would have blushed, Quinn returns his smile sharp and full force and he might be mistaken, but even though her eyes are cold they're almost kind of...coy? a little bit sly maybe? But he isn't fool enough to mistake anything like an invitation in any of it. "You keep spouting compliments at me every time we see eachother, blathering that beauty-with-smarts cliché at me on the bleachers, the the ghost of grace kelly and all that bs, really Jesse? Next you'll be making me mix tapes," she says sarcastically, but not completely displeased if the restrained mirth of her smile tells him anything. "you can cut it out, you know."

He laughs, there's an odd lightness in his chest, he hasn't felt this good in a while and it's weird that it's with her, this girl he'd always thought of superficial and small town before she went on and became bigger than he could have ever imagined. She's the perfect rendition of a cliché, yet the ultimate destroyer of one, if that even makes sense.

"I'll settle for getting out of here actually, I'm kind of a peckish sucker for the chocolate fountain I hear they have after the reception."

He would have offered his arm, and she wouldn't have taken it. She stares back at him levelly, her eyes dancing lights when they leave as one, not touching, like two soldiers within the tenuous boundaries of a truce. He wagers she doesn't hate it as much as she should.




end notes: smooth jesse, mention chocolate fountains, real freaking smooth. the pathetic grammar, and run-on pacing is intentional, it's kind of my patented way of writing, or something. dialogue... too much damn dialogue, what is wrong with me? i am such a nerd for hyphens and splurging on italics, it's sickening. disgraceful and unbeta-d which is how you like me, i'm sure, bow chica wow wow. on another note i'd like to call out to everyone who's ever reviewed my crap, i appreciate it, you've all been such darlings! feedback is awesome, it's like air for me. i'll come back with the next update within the week, i've written like, 80% of it. i hope i did this pairing some justice. god, what is with the glee show and its lack of serious angst these days? i want angst, give it to me naow.