A/N 1: I have no idea why I'm writing this. I guess I'm leaning more towards cheesy today. Who knows?
A/N 2: Also, this is unbeta'ed so all mistakes belong to me
A/N 3: The first time I posted this it wouldn't work, sorry for all the email spam :( But here it is. In all of it's fluffiness. I also think it might quell all the heartbreak from 3X14 with it's happier tone. Enjoy. Again, sorry for all the confusion before!
Disclaimer: I do not own Glee or its characters.
She can still smell her perfume on her linens.
Freshly laundered and resonating with the essence of her, she'd wondered long ago when they first met after school for vocal lessons in the days of Glee Club and petty romances – exactly which redolence had compelled her. She wears it almost daily. Over the months Rachel's figured out the secret – Tresór by Lancôme – It's a beautiful fragrance that belongs behind honey hazel eyes, pink cheeks, and hair almost as golden as the sun itself.
A touch of apricot, and lilac.
A hint of sandalwood and vanilla.
And every time that Quinn Fabray leaves her dorm at NYADA after a weekend stay – Rachel wishes she could capture her scent there forever, like a time capsule for her still beating heart.
"I wish you didn't have to go, Quinn." She can outline her jaw with one of her fingers, and she does just that as she turns into solid arms atop the mattress. Resting her head beneath a pale chin, smelling the early morning scent of her with a tranquil inhale. She isn't wearing her perfume yet, but Rachel smiles – she smells like freshly picked cotton and sweet honey – she smells like home.
"You know I love you right, song-bird?" It's a small little term of endearment that Quinn had sprung up on her over the summer between graduation and fall term at NYADA and Yale respectively. A lot had changed for them in those few months. After calling off the wedding to Finn, she remembers a knock on the door in the middle of the hottest day of the summer. She had opened it red-eyed and alone, to find a bright-eyed Quinn standing on her doormat in a summer blouse and seersucker shorts with sandals, and a baseball cap. When had she ever seen Quinn in a baseball cap? There were lilies clutched into her hands, and her teeth had been biting down on her lower lip, surfacing a red hue. "I'm sorry for being one of the main reasons why you and Finn broke up –I just wanted to see you happy. And I know, now that someday you will be." She had taken the lilies wide-eyed and amazed, smelling their sweet aroma slowly. She really did love lilies. And when Quinn pointed to a baby blue bike leaning against the white fence – Rachel smiled, letting the sun hit her tan skin. "Do you want to go bicycling with me?"
It had been an invitation for so much more. And as the days wound together and muddled into a stream of bright, hazy heat, they found something. Buried within their tentative friendship with each other, and behind their longing gazes. And somehow beneath the stars, staring at a lunar eclipse in the first week of August, beneath the old willow tree at Granger Park. She couldn't stop herself from leaning in just a little bit closer, and wrapping her arms around that familiar waist just a little bit tighter. Quinn had stared down at her then, after they had seen a shooting star blaze through the darkened sky.
"Will we still have this once summer's over?" Rachel had gripped on even tighter, as if by letting go, everything would simply return to a dream. "Of course. New Haven is only two hours by train roughly…I've already checked Quinn. I won't have it any other way. You're my best friend." And when the moon had finally fallen under darkness above them, and the light dwindled to a full darkness, she felt Quinn's breath above her, dancing over her lips sweetly like melting honey. "I think I'm in love with you Song-bird." And when all of the stars gave out above them, the distance between them was linked – entrapping their lips into a soft bind. And she knew then…with the smell of Sandalwood, apricot, honey, and summer cotton. That Quinn Fabray would be in her life for a very long time.
And today with her chin tucked beneath that familiarly soft skin, she lets her eyes fill with salty tears, trying to reel them in before they spill over onto the sheets between them. "I know, but I want you to stay." And the smell of cotton surrounds her as Quinn shimmies down beneath the blanket to rest her head against Rachel's chest, right over her pattering heartbeat. Her golden hair is unkempt from sleep and Rachel buries her face in it, quelling her tears within the smell of melon and pomegranate. "I want to stay too…but do you feel that Rachel?" She pauses as her hand is brought up by warm fingers to press down on a pale chest right above a similarly beating heart. "Your heartbeat?"
"It only beats for you sweetheart. It always has. I'm always with you, no matter where I am, or what I'm doing. I can always feel you…right here." And Rachel crumbles into her, kissing her forehead and her cheeks and her knuckles with soft vulnerability. Their time is short, it's Sunday morning, and Quinn has class in the morning at eight am, it's only a two-hour drive to Connecticut, but Quinn has reading to do, and a group study session. Every Sunday that their weekends are brought to a close, she wishes that she had more time. "I'm glad you drove this time." The car is parked out on the street, Quinn and Rachel having taken the opportunity to road-trip back to the East Coast after winter break. It was cheaper, and a lot more fulfilling, and it afforded them transportation when gas could be afforded.
"I'll be back in a few weeks song-bird, I love you too much to stay away for too long." And with a watery laugh Quinn rises up off of the bed, pulling Rachel with her, and the shorter girl has no other plan but to follow her to the edge of forever. She wraps her arms around her waist, and leans against her back as they walk to Rachel's small en suite closet. Time has never seemed to be on their side.
Three hours later, Rachel stands at the busy curb, watching the love of her life pack her suitcase and book bag into the trunk of her car. When the trunk closes with a click, she turns to Quinn then, letting the tears come and fall unabashedly from her long eyelashes. And when her lip quivers and she bites it to keep her emotions at bay, she feels familiar arms envelop her, and the smell of Tresór lingering by her neck. And she feels alive, and comforted, and home. Their embrace lasts through the space of time, and they hold one another as if they won't have another chance. And for Rachel, that's exactly what this feels like. The last embrace to forever; she clings just a little bit tighter. And Quinn leans back kissing her softly on the lips before kissing away the fresh tracks of her tears.
"Don't cry for me song-bird, I'll be back." But Rachel can see the tears swimming between hazel and flecks of green when she pulls back, and she smiles despite the flush. Rachel squeezes her one last time before finally letting her go, with a quick lingering kiss in the space between them. She watches her Sandalwood blonde climb into the driver's seat of her Hyundai and rev the engine. She catches those brilliant hazel eyes lock on her own with a small wave before the gearshift gets pushed into drive. And when the car disappears down the busy Manhattan streets, Rachel simply stands in place for another fifteen minutes, staring at the shadow. She swears she can still smell her in the air. And she wants that reassurance for as long as it will have her.
Forty-five minutes later she's lying in bed, reading a musical theory paper for one of her classes when her cell phone beeps. It's a text message from her girl, and she's almost brought to tears again as she traces over the text on the small screen.
"Don't worry, I stopped off at a gas station for gas. No texting and driving for me. But I miss you Song-bird. And I love you with everything that I am. I'll call you when I make it back to campus, okay?" She smiles and types out a response, before falling back into the sheets of her bed and inhaling – smelling her on the thread, almost feeling her shadow beneath her fingertips. And she feels…she feels all right.