I am so sorry it has been so long since I've updated this fic. I really didn't mean to take that long, but I haven't been my best self lately and there was some personal stuff going on that left me completely unmotivated to write. However, a couple of people had messaged me lately and really encouraged me to finish writing this chapter. I'm sorry again, and always feel free to message me and yell at me to start writing lol. Anyways, this isn't as long as I was going to make it. I was going to make one super long chapter but I decided to split it.
Anyways, I hope you enjoy. And thank you to those of you who still stuck around after that huge hiatus.
Hey this is Santana. I either can't get to the phone or I am ignoring you. Leave me a message and I might call you back. BEEP.
She couldn't count how many times she had heard this message. The numerous attempts to try and reach Santana were not going as well as she had hoped. Her texts ignored, and her emails unread. She has heard Santana's voicemail so many times that she could mouth the words. She could also count down the seconds until she heard the beep.
"Hey Santana, it's Quinn...again," she said it every time even though she didn't have to. "I really wish you would call me. It isn't what you think, I promise," she paused, taking a shaky breath. "I just...I really miss you, okay? It didn't mean anything and-"
Recipient's voicemail box is full. If you'd wish to hear your message, press 1. If you'd wish to redo your message, press 2. If you'd wish to delete your message, press 3.
"-I love you," the words died on her tongue.
Quinn hesitated for a minute before pressing 3. It didn't really matter anyways. She knew every message in Santana's voicemail was from her. She already knew she had sent the girl nearly 30 messages, all saying the same thing.
I'm sorry. I miss you. It didn't mean anything. Let me explain. Please pick up. I love you.
She tossed the phone beside her on the bed, drawing her knees close to her chest. She buried her face in her hands, her palms rubbing her tired eyes, forcing colours to dance behind her lids. Her eyes were red and puffy and burned at the touch of her hands. She spent most of her nights lying awake, wondering how she could fix this. Make it right. She only managed to get a few hours after she had cried out every tear she managed to have; after she felt so emotionally drained. She would cry now if she thought that she had any tears left.
Instead, she found some strength to lift herself up from her bed and walk over to her closet. She stripped out of the pyjamas she had been wearing the entire weekend in exchange for her Cheerio uniform. She slowly pulled on the uniform, languidly zipping up the zippers.
She looked at herself in her full length mirror. Her eyes were dark, her face pale. She had to force herself to stand straight, force herself to try and look attentive. Today was going to be a difficult day navigating her way through the halls of McKinley, faking perfection.
She walked over to her vanity, brushing on more makeup to try and cover up her tired features. She pulled her hair into a tight ponytail and grabbed her gym bag before making her way down the stairs.
She walked into her kitchen and into the familiar scene. Her father perched at the head of the table, reading the paper and eating his meal. Her mother circling the kitchen like some cartoon character, trying to keep herself busy.
She walked over to the coffee pot, pouring herself a mug. She never really liked the stuff but she forced it down, the bitter taste remaining on her tongue. She tried to keep the grimace off of her face.
"Good morning, Quinnie!" her mother said a little too excitedly.
"Morning," she managed to mumble out.
"Sweetie, did you get enough sleep? You look absolutely exhausted," her mother managed to say sympathetically.
She was surprised her mother had even noticed anything. Since Friday, Quinn spent most of her time in her room, trying her hardest to speak to Santana. When she was crying, she would hear her mother pass by her door, pausing for a moment, before continuing on. When she managed to drag herself downstairs for dinner, she would sit there and push the food around her plate, only managing to down a few bites. Her parents didn't even question her, they just continued on with normal conversation. It was almost as if nothing was wrong.
"I'm fine mom. I was just studying late," she lied, turning away and walking towards the kitchen table.
"That's my girl, focusing on her studies. If you want to have a promising future like your sister, you have to learn to make smart decisions," Russell gave her a knowing smile.
She knew what he really meant. It was smart to get rid of Santana. He never liked her, or what she stood for. Losing her as a friend was the right decision. Focusing on school, boys and Cheerios was the right decision. Being Frannie 2.0 was the right decision.
She hated having to make the right decision. She hated living in her shadow.
And she hated not seeing Santana. If only her father knew the truth. But deep down, Quinn felt like he already knew. Whether he knows the whole story or not, there is a bigger reason why he wanted her to stay away.
Who knew Santana was going to make that so easy for him.
Her mother walked over and placed her breakfast in front of her. The smell was almost nauseating, but she managed to force down a few mouthfuls.
"Is Santana driving you to school today?" her mother asked.
"Umm...no. I think I am just going to walk."
"Nonsense, one of us will drive you. You need to save your energy for Cheerios. There is no way you will make captain next year if you start slacking off now," her father said over his newspaper.
The thought of having to endure the car ride with either one of her parents was troubling enough. Some days, it was hard to sit with them at the dinner table, faking conversation for 30 minutes before she could retreat to her room or find a way to get out of the house. The last thing she wanted to do was spend an extra 15 minutes with either one of them, sharing pointless small talk. She didn't want to sit in the passenger seat while her mother droned on about her book club or the new pair of shoes she bought, ignoring any real issues and substituting them with materialistic things. She didn't want to hear her father go on about school, boys, Cheerios and her future. She was tired of him delegating her life.
It didn't matter though because 20 minutes later she was sitting next to her father in his BMW. At this point, she would rather be sitting next to her mother. Her mom may ramble about insignificant things, but that's all it was; rambling. She could handle that, but she hated the idea of talking to her dad. His talks tended to be more scarring.
"So, it seemed like you and Dean really hit it off the other night," he voiced.
Quinn kept her focus on the road ahead of her, almost like she didn't hear him say anything.
"You know I am only trying to help you. People like Dean are going to get you out of this place."
"If you want to help me, why don't you stay out of my life?" she mumbled, balancing on the fine line of whether she wanted her father to actually hear her or not.
He did. "Look, you can hate me all you want, but these people are good for you. Dean is good for you. Why can't you see I am handing you a promising future on a silver platter?" his voice was sterner now. "You need to make room for new people in your life, Quinn."
"What was wrong with the old people?" she managed a quick glance before looking back to the road.
"You mean people like Santana?"
Quinn didn't meet him with an answer she just sat next to him quietly. That was enough of an answer for Russell to continue.
"People like Santana come with a reputation. She comes from a family of delinquents, who managed to stumble into old money and move into the heights," he paused. "They are not the type of people you associate with. She is not the kind of person you should associate with."
"And why shouldn't I associate with her?" she questioned as they pulled up to a red light.
"She's been arrested, she parties nonstop, she's had multiple sexual encounters with both sexes and she's not going anywhere with her life. But you...you're going somewhere. You shouldn't let her stop you from creating a future, a respectable future."
"Well, what if I am not willing to cut her out of my life?"
Russell pulled the car up to the front of the school and let it slow to a stop. He put the car in park before turning to look at Quinn.
"Fine, you do whatever you want with your life. But I have just one question for you,"
Quinn turned to meet her father's gaze.
"If she's such an important part of your life, where is she now? Why am I the one driving you to school instead of her?"
Quinn looked away, trying to hold back the tears that were threatening to fall. She couldn't be seen crying. Not here, and especially not in front of her dad. Tears were a sign of weakness. She had to pretend to be strong, even if it hurt to do so.
She ignored the nagging thought that repeated in the back of her head. Why isn't she here? Maybe he is right for once.
But she quickly pushed the thought away, ignoring the sting of his blows. She quickly got out of the car, grabbing her gym bag, before slamming the door. She didn't even bother with a goodbye. She just kept walking towards the school, her head held high. The exhaustion she felt earlier was replaced with a new energy derived from her anger. She could physically see people parting in the hallways to avoid her path.
Hopefully it would be enough for her to make it through the day.
The high she carried this morning was starting to fade away. She sat in the back of Math, trying her best to pay attention. But every time she glanced to her side, the empty seat sent a pang to her chest. It seemed Santana hadn't bothered to show up to school at all today, and Quinn knew she was the one to blame.
The Cheerio table at lunch seemed so dull without Santana there. She faked her smiles and her laughs. She pretended to be amused with the football players' antics, but none of it was sincere. She missed having Santana sitting next to her, whispering jokes in her ear and brushing her hand over her knee when no one was looking.
When the bell rang, she didn't even bother going to Spanish. She slipped out of the front door of the school and immediately whipped out her phone. She scrolled through the contacts until she found the name she was looking for.
"Hey, can you come pick me up? I really need someone right now."
"You know I am skipping English right now for you. My parents are going to kill me later."
"Good thing English is your native language," Quinn smirked.
Dean returned the smile before turning his attention back to the road. She knew it may have been stupid to call Dean of all people, but she just needed someone to talk to about this; someone who knew the whole story. She was getting tired of changing names or changing genders. She was tired of skimming over the problem in attempts to not reveal too much.
She just needed a friend.
They had been driving for quite awhile. Quinn suggested they go to Dean's but he was sure his father would be home working in his office. He didn't want to chance it, and instead took the turn ramp onto the highway.
A little over 30 minutes later, the two pulled up to a small diner that was on the outskirts of Lima. It wasn't much to look at, but that meant there were less people. Quinn was suddenly thankful that they were here instead of back home.
They walked through the doors, taking in the vintage look of the diner. The walls were covered in old movie posters and business flyers. The seats were covered in red vinyl, faded through the years. The jukebox in the corner played classic rock for the two other customers seated against the far left wall of the diner.
It was cozy. Quinn liked it.
They both found a booth at the far right side of the diner near the jukebox, trying to get as far as possible away from the other customers so they could talk. They may not be in Lima anymore but this was still Ohio.
"What can I get you two?" one of the waitresses asked with little enthusiasm.
"Two chocolate milkshakes and a large plate of fries," Dean spewed out before Quinn looked at the menu. The waitress took their order before disappearing into the kitchen.
"You realize I am going to have to pay hell in Cheerios for eating this, right?"
"Live a little. Besides, I heard girls eat a lot of carbs after a break up."
"We didn't break up. At least, I don't think we've broken up."
"Either way, a chocolate milkshake and a few fries won't kill you."
"You obviously haven't met Sue Sylvester."
They both shared a smile before breaking out into a quiet chuckle. It had been awhile since Quinn let herself smile and laugh. Her weekend was filled with moping about Santana. And while she was still upset, she just needed a break from all the crying. Dean was good company in that case.
But now she sat, picking at the corner of the laminated menu. She had called him to talk, but didn't really figure out what she wanted to talk about. This whole thing was really new to her still and it still felt weird talking to Dean about it all.
She waited until the waitress brought over their drinks and fries before trying to speak.
"I don't really know how to do this."
"Do what?" Dean asked, dipping a fry into his milkshake.
"That is disgusting."
"No it's not, and you're deflecting," Dean smiled, shoving the fry into his mouth.
"So I screwed up."
"I think we've established that."
"And I don't know how to fix it."
"Well, have you tried talking to her?" he asked, shovelling more food into his mouth.
"No not at all."
"Okay, I don't need any of your sarcasm. I just thought I'd ask."
"Well next time make your question less idiotic."
"Hey, yelling at me right now is not going to fix anything. You know why? You screwed up and you screwed up big. And see I'm," Dean pointed to himself using a french fry, "only trying to help you here. Yet you choose to be a bitch about it. I can gladly drive back to school and still make the last 20 minutes of English, or you can cut the crap and let me help."
Quinn sighed. She knew Dean was right. He drove 30 minutes with her just to talk with her about Santana. He was offering to help and she was being a complete bitch to him.
She reached out and grabbed a fry, experimentally dipping it into the milkshake before taking a small bite.
"This actually isn't too bad."
"I told you, don't knock it 'til you try it," he smiled. "Now are you going to stop deflecting so we can talk about this, or was this your secret plan to get me to go on a second date with you? 'Cause I got to tell you, I'm taken," he chuckled as Quinn smacked his arm.
"So not funny right now."
"Okay then, talk."
That was the thing. Here Dean was opening up the gate, urging Quinn to talk, and the only thing she could do was sit there silently. She didn't know where she wanted to begin, or how to begin. A million questions floated through her head, as well as a million explanations. Choosing the right one was the challenge.
Dean could see Quinn was struggling, the struggle being evident in her facial features; the way her brows furrowed and her lips held a firm line.
"Right, how about I ask the questions and you do your best to answer them?" Dean offered.
"I think that is a good idea," Quinn jumped at the suggestion. It saved her from sorting through the crumpled mess that were her thoughts.
"Okay, so you have tried to talk to her?"
"I've sent her texts, emails, and called her. I feel like I am talking to a brick wall at this point and I can't even be mad about it. I was the idiot that screwed up, and now I might lose her."
Quinn didn't plan for the tears to well up in her eyes. She thought she had been completely drained, but talking about the idea of losing Santana brought them back. That thought killed her more than anything. She never thought she would ever be with Santana and now that she has her, she never wants to let her go.
"Have you tried seeing her?"
"She hasn't answered any messages from me. What makes you think I would go to visit her? I'd rather avoid getting a door slammed in my face, thank you very much."
"So you haven't even tried?"
"Well there's your problem right there! You haven't even tried to see her. You can call as many times as you want Quinn, but you don't look committed to fixing the problem without showing up to her house with flowers in hand and a big, fat apology to go with them."
"And what makes you think me showing up with flowers to apologize will work?"
"Worked with you, didn't it?" he said taking the last remaining fries.
The idea seemed so simple and yet she hadn't even tried to see the girl. Granted because she was fearful of the ultimate outcome of a door hitting her face and her being completely rejected, but she still hadn't tried. When she ran out on Santana many months ago and didn't answer her messages, Santana still had the nerve to show up at her door with flowers and a song. And now Quinn sits in the same predicament and she is too much of a coward to step up for Santana.
"Okay, so I haven't seen her. I know it's bad, but I couldn't handle it if she rejected me. That thought kills me more than anything."
"So you just have to make sure there is no way she could reject you."
"And you think some flowers and a song is going to fix that?"
"Oh, you're gonna need a lot more than some roses and a ballad."
"Okay genius, do you have some master plan that will fix this?"
A smile spread wide on Dean's face, "actually I do."
The title screen of Sweet Valley high played repeatedly in the background as Santana's gaze was focused on her ceiling. She had spent the entire day in bed just like this. Watching episode after episode and forcing herself to sleep. She was doing her best to push any thoughts of Quinn out of her mind, even if just for a few minutes. But with each episode she watched, she missed the feeling of Quinn's slender fingers combing through her hair. She missed Quinn asking a million questions because she couldn't remember any of the characters names or any of the storylines. When she did manage to fall asleep, all she saw were flashes of the blonde hair and hazel eyes she has missed so much these past few days. Sometimes she even saw her with him and that was an image that made her never want to sleep again.
Santana had planned to go to school that day, but she couldn't find the courage to do so. She couldn't walk through those halls, seeing Quinn, trying to put on a brave face when inside she was falling apart. She couldn't handle seeing the girl, knowing she had been with someone else a few days ago. Knowing he got to sit across from her and look into those hazel eyes. That he got to hold her hand, or hug her, or even kiss-.
She couldn't think about that. That thought hurt; knowing that his lips may have brushed hers.
Santana sighed, knowing she wasn't going to fall asleep any time soon. She managed to stand up, turn off the TV, and head towards the bathroom. She stripped out of the clothes that she had been wearing for the past few days and turned on the shower. She let the hot water roll over her skin, washing away some of the bad thoughts. She let the burning water redden her caramel skin and run over her face. She let the steam cloud her mind and surround her. It was a nice break.
Eventually the water turned cold and she had to force herself to get out. She dried off and ran a brush through her hair. She walked over to her vanity and found a fresh pair sweats to put on. It was progress. At least she was changing her clothes.
She was about to climb back into bed when she heard a knocking at the front door. This was one of the times she wished her parents were home so she didn't have to go answer it herself. She was even more thankful she had taken that shower now so she didn't look like a homeless person squatting in the large home.
Santana forced herself to move down the steps and open the front door. But the second that she opened it, she wanted to close it.
"Santana wait!" Quinn's hand flew up to catch the door before it closed.
"Did you not get the message yet? I don't want to talk to you, Quinn!"
"Santana, please, hear me out. I just need you to listen to me."
"I don't really want to hear what you have to say, Quinn. You can go ride off into the sunset with your fucking Prince Charming and I'll live my life, sound good to you?"
"You know it wasn't like that," Quinn's voice was angry now. "You know it's you, it has only ever been you Santana. Why would I throw that away?"
Santana stopped pushing against the door and let Quinn's words sink in. She wanted to believe Quinn so bad, she really did. But she always had that fear that she wasn't good enough for the blonde.
"What do you want from me Quinn?" her voice was a little defeated.
"I want one night, okay? I want one night to prove to you that I am serious about this and that no lame set up from my dad is going to change that."
"One night, that's it?"
"If after tonight you don't want to do this with me anymore, then I will walk away and respect your decision. But I just need one night where we let go of the anger and the drama and have some fun."
Santana thought about it for a moment. She looked between Quinn's eyes, seeing the sincerity. It was one night with Quinn, with her girlfriend. And if she couldn't handle it, Quinn was willing to let her go. She saw how painful it was for the blonde to say that, but she was willing to do it for her. That was enough for Santana.
"Okay I'll do it. What do you have in mind?"
Yes a cliffhanger, but I already have an idea for the next chapter (for once). It shouldn't take me too long to update, but I also have to update 3 other stories (yikes). But I promise not to leave you hanging for months.
Until next time.