This picks up, more or less, right after Figgins disappears at the end of the last chapter.
The Author's Notes right below are not critical, but they do explain why I decided the second chapter of this took priority over the next chapter of Within You, Without You. Also, I made some minor changes to the first chapter of this. Mostly just the beginning and ending author notes as well as giving the chapter a title. I made a couple of edits within the story itself, but none of them actually changed anything plot-wise.
A/N: Given what happened on The Break-Up, I decided that this story needed a second chapter stat! So, I buckled down and finished what I'd started of it by writing 12 pages over the last week. Writing this chapter helped me get over my own disappointment in the show so I hope it might help you guys too.
A/N2: Don't expect to see any parallel versions of events from the show to happen in this story because I never intended to follow the actual Season 4 to begin with. I already had an idea as to what I wanted to happen in this before the first spoilers were even released.
Spoilers: Good news…there are none other than what I mentioned last chapter. Like I mentioned above, this will not be following the actual Season 4 at all.
Warnings: An abundance of cuteness, Santana making unexpected teacher-friends and a topless make-out session (not the least bit explicit). Language possibly…but only because of what is written on a t-shirt mentioned at the end.
THE BEST FIRST DAY EVER
"I'm going to miss you," the assistant coach mutters as she idly plays with the charms on Brittany's bracelet.
The blonde smiles sweetly at her wife. "I'm going to miss you too, but you know I have to spend lunch with the Cheerios. It's, like, tradition remember?" Brittany giggles as she leans in and rubs her nose playfully against Santana's for an Eskimo kiss.
"This sucks. I wish we could hide in the Cheerio office together instead," Santana confesses as the taller girl pulls away so she can finish putting her books up in her locker before going to the cafeteria after having spent her free third period in Sue's office with the smaller woman.
"Me too, but you know we can't," Brittany replies reasonably. "Remember what Mom said about how it's important that we still spend some time apart, either by ourselves or with friends, even though we're married," she gently reminds the brooding assistant coach of Maribel's advice. Around the time of the wedding, Santana's mother began to insist that Brittany call her 'Mom' just as Brittany's parents began to insist Santana call them 'Mom' and 'Dad' as well.
"I know," Santana breathes out, not particularly happy about it. "I should probably call Sue anyways to see how she's doing and make sure she doesn't need anything. I'm surprised she hasn't been calling all day to make sure I'm not screwing up," she says this last part mostly to herself.
Brittany eyes the other woman thoughtfully for a moment before slowly closing her locker and draping her arms over the brunette's shoulders. "I agree that you should check on Sue, but I don't think you should totally isolate yourself from everyone else here either if you plan on surviving the school year," she comments with a quick peck on her wife's lips before glancing around to make sure Figgins wasn't nearby to witness it.
"I'm not sitting in the cafeteria with you and the other Cheerios. That would be weird," Santana furrows her brows at the idea and Brittany's lips curl into a playful smirk as a fine eyebrow is arched up as if to say 'that was not what I was suggesting, try again'. "And I'm so not going to seek out Schue to bond over, like, vests and lesson plans either," she shakes her head vehemently, her expression is one of disgust at the idea.
In response, all Brittany can do is let out an adorable giggle, shaking her head before she places a chaste kiss on the darker woman's cheek. "No, I was suggesting you go to the Teacher's Lounge and maybe try to make nice with them," she finally clues Santana in on what she'd been suggesting.
"Ew, why?" Santana is clearly not too keen on the idea as she scrunches her face up in distaste.
"They're you're coworkers and they have experience with teaching, unlike you. You might need their help with something so it wouldn't hurt for you make an effort. The fact that you've been kind of horrible to them for the last four years means that you'll have to work extra hard and be the one to go to them since they're not going to be the ones to approach you first," Brittany explains clearly.
Santana heaves a heavy sigh that indicates she knows that the other woman is right. "This is going to be so awkward," she acknowledges.
"Want me to walk you?" Brittany offers with a hopeful smile as she rocks back and forth on her heels for a moment before hooking her pinky with the brunette's.
"Yes please," Santana readily accepts with a grin.
"Please? Just for, like, a second," Santana pleads, her fingers toying with the simple, silver wedding band on her wife's hand.
"You know I'm not allowed in there. I'm just a student, remember?" Brittany asks rhetorically, cheekily bopping the darker woman's nose with the index finger of her hand not being held captive by counterpart.
"That's never stopped us before," the brunette mutters, already resigned to having to go in by herself.
The bell rings to release third period classes to go to lunch. "You're the first one here so that makes it a little less awkward," she says encouragingly.
"I guess," Santana sighs.
"Don't be such a frowny-face, Santana Banana," the blonde grins as she leans in and places a chaste kiss on the corner of the shorter girl's lips, which instinctively curl into a smile.
"Fine," Santana gives in with an eye roll as she loses her battle with holding back her grin. "Go to lunch," she tells her.
"Okay…and remember to play nice with the other kids, Sweetheart," Brittany instructs her wife with feigned stern look.
Santana decides it's adorable and shakes her head. "You too," she chuckles before turning to go into the Teacher's Lounge.
The Latina yelps as she jumps up and turns to fix her wife with a wide-eyed look of disbelief. "Did you seriously just slap my ass?" She asks the blonde incredulously, rubbing at the aforementioned appendage with her left hand.
Brittany shrugs with an innocent smile, fighting off a smirk as her eyes sparkle mischievously. "See you in fifth period Mrs. Pierce-Lopez," she giggles before walking off, quickly disappearing into the crowd of students quickly flooding the halls.
Santana shakes her head in amusement as she finally goes into the Teacher's Lounge, relieved to see that she really is the first one in here. Opting to take the antisocial route despite Brittany's previous encouragement, she sits at an isolated table in the corner of the room. She sets down the brown paper bag Brittany decided to pack her lunch in. It was an incredibly sweet, thoughtful and unexpected gesture on the blonde's part, but Santana still can't help but eye the bag warily.
Opening the bag, Santana cautiously reaches in and pulls out an apple, a Dr. Pepper and a peanut butter and honey sandwich…with the crusts cut off…cut diagonally into four triangles. Her brows furrow when she goes to ball up the seemingly empty bag only to hear something else in there. Turning it upside-down, a neatly folded note falls out. Carefully unfolding it, she reads it over with an affectionate smile unconsciously spreading across her face, oblivious as other faculty members begin to filter in.
Dear The Most Awesomest Wife Eveeerrr,
I made you lunch without setting anything on fire or needing to get Lord Tubbington to help this time (even if I could still feel him judging me). But Charity gave it her approval with two paws up. I totally felt like one of those TV wives from, like, the '50s or something.
Except, you know, hotter. And married to the most beautiful woman in the History of Ever (it's true – I totally read it on Wikipedia).
I felt, like, super domestic and wife-like. It gave me warm-fuzzies and made my insides all tingly.
I didn't really know what to pack since Coach Sue never really let us eat lunch and the only thing we ate for lunch all summer was, well, you know…each other. When I called Mom to ask her she started laughing at me.
So I figured you like apples so that would be okay even though they're supposed to keep doctors away and I don't know if that's even a good thing or not. But it didn't really keep the Dr. Pepper away or anything and I know now that Dr. Pepper's a regular doctor since everyone told me that he (or she) wasn't a dentist...or something, right?
I think I still might be a little confused about that.
Anyways, I know you're super-cute about how you like your sand witches cut so that's what I did. I used the extra crunchy peanut butter too. And, you know, honey for my Honey :)
So, I don't know how to, like, end this since I never wrote one of these before. I guess the only other thing I can think to tell you is that I suggest you don't, you know, think of me naked while you're in class or anything 'cause that would probably be super-distracting. I mean, I've thought of you naked in class before and it was distracting so it'd probably be worse if you were supposed to be teaching it instead of sitting there and pretending to learn like I was.
Love you times infinity!
Brittany Susan Pierce-Lopez aka Britt-Britt aka Britts aka Britt-StiX aka B aka Wifey (that's my favorite)
Shaking her head, Santana giggles at how sweet and adorable her wife is…and at 'sand witches' too, of course. She refolds the note and carefully tucks it into the pocket of her Cheerio sweatpants since she left her jacket in Sue's office. There's no question that she plans to keep the note forever.
"Hello Santana," a voice tentatively greets the Latina, effectively pulling her out of her own little Brittany-filled head.
Consciously reminding herself not to scowl as a reflex, Santana looks up at the owner of said voice, her eyebrows shooting up in mild surprise when she sees a certain redhead with OCD shifting nervously.
"Uh, hello Ms. Pillsbury," Santana returns the greeting, internally cringing at how awkward she sounds. She relaxes slightly when the other woman offers a small smile as she senses the 18 year old's discomfort. "Did you want to, like, sit down…or something?" She asks uncertainly, wondering what the hell is wrong with her that she feels like such an outsider when, just four months ago she had no problem being around any of these people.
The older woman appears a little taken aback by the offer but that quickly turns into pleasant surprise. "Thank you, Santana, that would be lovely," she smiles again as she sits down across from the brunette, hoping to put her a little more at ease.
"Where's Mr. Schue?" Santana finds herself asking curiously, noticing a distinct lack of poodle-hair as she quickly glances around the slowly filling room, ignoring the cautious looks being sent her way.
"He'll be here in a little while," the redhead informs her, not sounding particularly worried as she unpacks her own lunch. "You know Santana…" she begins tentatively as she slows her movements and looks up at the brunette with a subtle smile, "you're no longer a student. You can call me Emma now," she says, her head tilted slightly to the side and trying not to show her amusement at the usually so confident young woman being so timid.
"Okay…Emma," Santana replies, feeling like a weight has been lifted when some of the tension in her back and shoulders is released. "How was your summer?" She finds herself asking as she picks up a triangle of her sandwich.
"It was nice. Will and I got a lot of planning done for our wedding. We just sent the invitations out a couple days ago actually," Emma informs the younger woman, smiling mostly to herself as she thinks about her almost-husband before she remembers who she's talking to. Her face flushes red as she meets the brunette's gaze but she's surprised by not getting the reaction she would have expected from her. What she expected was laughter, an irked arched eyebrow and an eye roll and/or a complete lack of interest. What she got was…
"It sounds like you had an amazing summer," Santana grins at the older woman without a hint of sarcasm, which surprises the councilor more than anything.
"We did," Emma confirms, growing increasingly more comfortable with the other girl which was the last thing she expected when she approached her table. She especially didn't expect that talking about planning her wedding would perk the darker girl up like it did…and then she remembers. "I think you and Brittany had a pretty good summer yourselves. Congratulations, Santana," she offers sincerely.
"Thanks," Santana blushes as she picks up another sandwich triangle, taking a moment to stare pensively at it. "We wanted everyone to be there, but it was such short notice especially since we had to drive all the way to D.C. to make it official," she says thoughtfully, a small smile still playing on her lips. It took only a moment of hesitation before she decided that it wouldn't be the end of the world if she held a genuine conversation with the older woman.
"You don't regret it, do you? You don't think you should have waited?" Emma questions and, to Santana, it sounds more like the redhead is asking them to herself rather than to the young woman sitting across from her.
"No, I could never regret it. I've loved Brittany my entire life so as far as I'm concerned marrying her was inevitable. If Brittany didn't want so badly to start this year off as Brittany Pierce-Lopez then we might have waited until she graduated," Santana shrugs one shoulder idly. "But what difference does a year make anyways? We already decided that after she graduates we want to have an actual wedding celebration here for our friends and everyone," she continues honestly.
Emma can't help but smile at Santana. She never would have expected to have a conversation like this with the other girl, or anyone really, but here she is. Even more surprising is that, whether she realizes it or not, Santana is helping her alleviate some of her own anxiety about getting married to the man she loves.
"Sue gave us your new address over the summer," the councilor informs the assistant coach a moment later.
"Oh, okay," Santana nods, brows furrowed in confusion at the random comment as well as why Sue would do that…or why Emma and Will would even need it.
"It wouldn't have made sense to send two separate wedding invites to your parents' homes what with you being married and not living at home anymore. Sending just one invitation to the Pierce-Lopez's was easier…and it also saves paper," Emma expands on her reasons for bringing it up, smiling at the other girl's reaction.
Santana can't help but beam with an uncharacteristically bashful smile. She always thought that girls who acted all giggly and coy and smitten over some boy or another were just pretending to be that affected and they couldn't possibly feel like that. Yet, with the acknowledgement of someone outside of family referring to Brittany and Santana as officially, indisputably and legally a legitimate married couple, that's exactly how she feels…like she's floating on a cloud of cotton candy.
"Brittany is a big supporter of going green," the Latina eventually replies, deliberately choosing to respond to the least significant thing the other woman said.
With a soft laugh, Emma shakes her head in amusement. "Are you saying that you're not?" She challenges the brunette.
"I am a big supporter of Brittany," Santana pointedly answers as she rolls her eyes playfully at herself. "If she decides she's into motocross then I'll buy her a helmet, convince her parents it's a good idea and be there for every practice and race cheering her on. If she wants to start her own web-series then I'll write her theme song and hold the camera while she interviews her cat. If she wants to be Student Council President then I'll design the posters and spend an afternoon arguing with the guy that works at Kinko's about using the wrong shade of red for the background. If she decides she's an environmentalist, then I'll research every way we can be more eco-friendly," she immediately blushes at how much of a sucker she is for her blonde.
"She's lucky to have you," the redhead says after a moment, caught a little off-guard by the Latina's genuine devotion to the blonde Head Cheerio.
"I'm the one that's lucky. She's just…she's worth it," she shrugs self-consciously.
Emma grins but chooses not to further comment on how surprisingly sweet the Latina who, up until about ten minutes ago, was probably the most intimidating student she's had to deal with in a long time…or ever. Instead she takes notice of what the teen is eating.
"Did Brittany pack your lunch?" She asks curiously, already having an idea as to the answer.
"Yeah," Santana laughs as she follows Emma's gaze to the remaining sandwich triangle before noticing that the councilor doesn't seem to quite grasp why it's funny. "When she told her Nana that we were getting married, she was happy for us but then she gave Brittany a long talk about how she'd have to get comfortable performing her 'wifely duties'," she explains with air quotes. "Brittany thinks this is the kind of thing she was talking about," she adds humorously with a shake of her head as she refers to packing her lunch.
Emma appears a little perplexed for a moment. "Performing her…" she repeats to herself as she tries to figure out what she means. "Oh," she says as it sinks in…then her eyes widen at the full implication of term 'wifely duties'. "Oh!" She bleats out in realization and a little embarrassment, her face turning red.
"Yeah," Santana smirks at her reaction before shaking her head and laughing. "How do you think I felt? I was stuck between Brittany and her mother with Britt's eleven-year old sister sitting on my lap and being forced to listen to a septuagenarian modestly tell my soon-to-be wife, essentially, not to be afraid or intimidated when we have sex on our wedding night and that she'll eventually she'll get better at it over time and with lots of practice," she explains to the councilor with a small grin and her face turning slightly darker from either embarrassment.
"Oh my, that does sound uncomfortable," Ms. Pillsbury tries to restrain her amusement behind a fake cough and a hand covering her mouth.
"My mother was sitting on the other couch turning purple from trying not to start laughing at me while Brittany's grandmother was incredibly serious and too busy using puritanical euphemisms to realize that Britt was misunderstanding everything she was saying and only getting more confused," Santana simply shakes her head at the situation.
At this, Emma tries – and fails – to hold back a short burst of laughter, which only causes Santana to laugh as well. This, and the sight of several confused co-workers, is what Will Schuester walks into as he steps into the Teacher's Lounge.
"Uh, hello Emma…Santana," Will awkwardly greets as he approaches the table, a little hesitant to interact with his brunette former student.
"Hello Will," Emma replies warmly, her amusement slowly fading as she reaches in her lunch bag for her economy-size bottle of hand sanitizer. "Santana was just telling me about how confused Brittany became as a result of a miscommunication with her grandmother," she tries to summarize as vaguely as possible.
With a weak smile at the Latina, Will bites his tongue to keep from making a comment about how it doesn't take much to confuse the bubbly blonde. He really doesn't want to start things off on the wrong foot with the other girl on only the first day of the new school year…especially now with the 18-year old seeming lighter and more relaxed than he thinks he's ever seen her.
"Oh," is the only safe thing he can come up with on the spot.
Santana smirks at him and his obvious attempt to play it safe. "Britts didn't that know 'wifely duties' is a polite way of saying 'sex' instead of, say, packing lunch for work," she shakes her head in amusement, but her lips are already set in a soft, sweet smile as she thinks about her wife and ignoring the foreign taste of the word 'work' on her tongue.
"Um, wow…yeah, okay," Will nervously replies as he takes a seat next to Emma, his face turning red at the blunt Latina. "So, how's your first day been going so far?" He asks, trying to move to a much safer topic, but still genuinely curious.
Taking a moment to actually consider the question, Santana shrugs slightly. "It's a little surreal being back here like this and not being able to see Brittany very much during the day. Cheerios on Monday, Wednesday and Friday mornings then we both have a free period before lunch then she has sixth period calc with me and then Cheerios if it's a practice day," she explains.
"What about glee club?" Will can't help but ask.
"What about it?" Santana furrows her brows.
"You can see each other in glee club too…unless she wasn't planning on being a part of it again this year," he thinks to mention the last part at the end, internally panicking at the idea of losing his best dancer as well as one of the best singers at the same time despite both of them still being in the school.
"Oh, well, it's not like we've talked about it or anything but I can't imagine her not wanting to be in glee but, in case you haven't noticed, I'm not a student anymore so it's not like I can stay in it too," Santana points out, looking at the History teacher like he's lost his mind.
"I know that, but…" Will sighs as he trails off, trying to find some way to get around it.
"Um, I have a suggestion," Ms. Pillsbury chimes in timidly. Will turns to her with a curious look and Santana arches a brow in interest. "Perhaps Santana can be your assistant or co-coach for the glee club since she's a member of the faculty now? If, of course, you're interested Santana," she turns to other girl inquisitively.
"I think it would do a lot of good to bring in a fresh perspective to the coaching aspect just like new members are good for working on teamwork and acceptance. I don't know if we would've been as good as we were during Nationals last year if we didn't have to compete against the Trouble Tones and Shelby before Sectionals," Will speculates on the possible advantages.
Santana remains thoughtful about it for several moments. "Look, I like the idea in theory but I don't want to stretch myself out too thin and get weighed down under too many things at once," she expresses her concerns.
"Right, of course not," Schuester agrees, feeling a slight pang of disappointment after having gotten his own hopes up.
"Besides, I should talk to Brittany about it before making any decision about that on my own. I'd hate to say yes only to find out that she'd have preferred the glee club to be more of a 'her' thing than an 'us' thing, you know?" She asks, hating the idea of her wife wanting glee club as her own 'Brittany-time' for just her and her friends without Santana.
The other couple is momentarily taken aback by the mature and considerate insight of the other girl. It's something of a testament to how devoted and attentive Santana is as a spouse that she would forgo making any decision that would affect her and Brittany without first speaking to Brittany about it. Not just that, but it also shows that Santana values the blonde Head Cheerio's opinion enough in the first place for her to want to get it before giving any kind of answer.
"I'm sure she'd appreciate you asking her first. Take as much time as you need to decide," Will smiles encouragingly. When he was married to Teri still, it had taken him years to realize the importance of talking to his wife before making a decision that would affect them both and not just him. Yet, here's Santana, only married for four months and she and Brittany already know that.
Santana gives him a weird look. "Britts and I have always done that ever since we were, like, three. That's how we decided on cheerleading over soccer or gymnastics and why we joined glee with Quinn instead of telling her to go screw herself," she cites the most obvious examples, wondering why Schuester is looking at her like she's the Dalai Lama for knowing this.
Before any of them can say anything else, the bell is ringing and signaling that lunch is over.
Of course it's weird teaching people that had been her peers up until three months ago. The first two classes went fine…but then again, Brittany wasn't in either of those classes. Santana can't help but feel a little self-conscious with her wife gazing up at her with a dreamy smile on her face from her seat dead center in the first row. Trying to ignore the blonde Cheerio captain, Santana stands in front of the class with her lower back against the desk, her legs stretched in front of her and crossed at the ankles and her arms crossed over her chest. She maintains a firm, mild glare as she explains the syllabus.
"So, these first two weeks are going to be focusing on limits and their properties. This is going to be chapter one in your textbooks and, since everyone's already been assigned their book, then there is no reason why none of you can get started reading it tonight. I'm not going to assign any mandatory homework or equations to do today, but I am going to highly suggest you try a couple out for your own benefit. Tomorrow we're going to get right into the first section of the chapter and working some of the basic problems and I won't tolerate a room full of miscreants staring at me like I'm speaking another language, we clear?" Santana barks out her question, an eyebrow arched challengingly. Nineteen students nod their heads quickly, their mouths hanging open dumbly, while the twentieth student grins even wider, her face reflecting nothing more than adoration.
Santana briefly returns the smile before noticing a tentative hand rise up two seats to the left and three seats back from Brittany, nodding at the owner of said hand to speak. "When's our first test?" A boy timidly asks, earning a round of groans and a few balls of paper being chucked at him.
"That's enough," Santana growls at the protesting students, all of which immediately quiet down. "You have a quiz this Friday and your first test is going to be next Thursday," she answers his question. "Anything else?" She wonders, eyebrow arched questioningly. For the most part, they all either shake their heads or sit quietly, unmoving. "Great, well, it's your lucky day then because since there's only five minutes until the last bell, I'm letting you out early today…but don't expect me to make a habit out of it," she lightly warns the last part.
For a moment, everything is still before the room erupts in a flurry of activity where everyone not married to their teacher leaves as quickly as possible. Fortunately for Brittany, that means that she's the only one left.
"Have I mentioned that you're super-hot when you're being all commanding and authoritative?" The blonde purrs as she stands up from her seat up front and approaches the smaller woman.
"I seem to recall you mentioning something like that once or twice over the summer when I was standing in as the Cheerio coach…and even before that as Cheerio Captain. But, I can't remember for sure," the Latina teases gently, her posture relaxing as Brittany comes to stand in front of her, pale hands settling on Cheerio sweatpants-clad hips.
"Well, maybe I can try to refresh your memory a bit," Brittany replies, equally as playful.
"After we get home, okay?" Santana smiles sweetly up at the taller girl, her arms draped over the blonde's shoulders.
"Fine," Brittany pouts after a moment.
"Good," Santana grins triumphantly as she rises up on her tip-toes enough to drop a brief kiss on one of the other woman's freckle-dusted cheeks before taking on an almost nervous demeanor. "I wanted to ask you something anyways," she says softly, removing her arms from over the blonde's shoulders.
"Everything okay?" Brittany furrows her brows in concern as she picks her Cheerio backpack up from beside her desk as Santana grabs her old backpack from under her own desk.
"Yeah," Santana smiles reassuringly as her right hand takes the blonde's left one, their fingers automatically intertwining, the act a reflex at this point. "It's nothing bad or anything," she is quick to assure her before Brittany can get too worried as the duo make their way into the hall. "Just, at lunch, Will…Mr. Schuester," she corrects herself upon her wife's look of confusion, "offered to let me be, like, a co-director for New Directions so that I could still be a part of the glee club and spend more time with you even if I can't technically still be in the club," she informs her of the situation.
"Really? That's great," Brittany beams before her brows furrow in confusion. "So…wait, what was your question?" She asks with her head cocked to the side inquisitively as they reach her locker.
"I just wanted to make sure it was okay with you before I gave him an answer. I don't want to, like, smother you or anything," Santana shyly admits, looking down and playing with the pleats on her wife's Cheerio skirt with her free hand so she doesn't have to see the other girl's reaction.
"'Tana, of course it's okay. I think it's awesome as long as you want to do it and don't think it'll overwhelm you or anything," Brittany coos, her heart fluttering at how thoughtful the darker woman is.
"Yeah?" Santana hazards a bashful glance up at the blonde from under her lashes, biting on her bottom lip uncertainly, grinning when the other girl nods enthusiastically. "Well, I guess I'll be seeing you in the choir room," she chirps, breaking their handhold.
"Wait, what? Glee starts in, like, ten minutes," Brittany frowns in confusion as Santana starts to make her way down the hall just as the bell rings and students start pouring into the hallway.
"I know, I'll be there. I just have something to take care of first," Santana calls out just before getting swallowed in the chaos.
The head Cheerio stares off in the general direction her wife disappeared in, perplexed and a little dazed at how quickly the other woman disappeared. After a moment, she shakes herself out of her stupor and proceeds to open her locker so she can dump her unnecessary books before going to the choir room.
Meanwhile, after a hesitant knock and a mildly surprised 'Come in', Santana slowly opens the door and pokes her head in with a tentative smile.
"Oh! Hello Santana. This is certainly unexpected. Is everything alright?" Ms. Pillsbury greets the younger woman, clearly surprised…but pleasantly so.
"Everything is great," the Latina smiles a little more certainly as she steps fully into the office and eases the door closed behind her. "How'd your afternoon go?" She asks, trying not to cringe at her poor attempt at small talk as she looks around, not having spent more than a handful of minutes in the office over the course of the previous four years.
"Good. And yours?" The redheaded woman answers honestly, obviously amused by the teen's awkwardness but having the good grace not to bring attention to it.
"Not as bad as I was afraid it would be," Santana answers honestly as she turns back to the guidance counselor. "Brittany and I decided to see how it goes with me helping Mr. Schue, Will, in the glee club," she shrugs nonchalantly but with a small smile playing on her lips.
"That's wonderful Santana!" Emma grins, genuinely pleased to hear it, before her brows furrow slightly as she notices the time. "Their first meeting starts shortly though, so shouldn't you be in the choir room?" She questions, wondering if that's the reason for the darker woman stopping in.
"Will's always a few minutes late anyways," Santana brushes it off casually. "Besides…" she trails off, turning a little shy all of a sudden, "I kind of wanted to see if I could ask you a favor," she lifts her eyebrows into a hopeful expression.
"Oh, well, I'll certainly do whatever I can to help," Emma offers amicably, curious as to what the favor could be.
"Well, Figgins hasn't said anything so far, but that's probably because he's pretty clueless in general anyways, but I don't want to have to worry about there being an issue in the future," Santana begins slowly and, upon noticing the baffled look on the other woman's face, she realizes she hasn't actually mentioned her situation yet. "I'm teaching Brittany's calculus class," she reminds her pointedly, hoping to sum up where she's going with this.
"I seem to remember you mentioning that during lunch today," Emma replies simply as she nods in understanding.
Santana huffs out a breath as she fixes a 'really?' look on her face and crosses her arms over her chest. "I, an 18 year old who was a student here until three months ago, am teaching a math class in which my wife is a student of mine," she clarifies a little forcefully, relaxing when realization crosses over the older woman's features. "I expect, at some point, there to be someone who accuses me of unfair treatment or tampering with her grade or something along those lines. So, I think that I can avert a lot of the accusations if I have someone else grade Brittany's work other than myself," she finally gets to her main point.
"Um, I'm not sure if I'm the right person you want to ask for that," Ms. Pillsbury reluctantly states.
"You'll have the answer key so all you'll need to do is see if her answers match up with it. I don't want to ask any of the others from the math department since they never really liked me much and I wouldn't want to risk them trying to sabotage her or something to get back at me. Besides, no one is going to question your credibility since you're neutral and have far too much integrity for anyone to wonder if I, like, bribed you into giving her good grades," she smirks this last part.
Emma seems to think about this for several moments. "Okay, I can grade Brittany's work. I would hate for you to get in trouble or for her to have others question her capabilities like that. She doesn't need anyone trying to make her feel like she isn't intelligent enough to be able to pass without her wife fudging her grades," she smiles warmly at the girl.
"Thank you," Santana breathes out, relieved. "And this is only until Sue is cleared to return and ease back into teaching her classes again so it won't be inconveniencing you for too long…I hope," she adds the last part under her breath.
"It's no inconvenience at all," Emma assures her honestly.
"Thanks again," the Latina grins, silently cursing herself for never coming to the counselor when she was a student here and asking herself how she didn't see how much the other woman could've helped her during those especially difficult and confusing times…pretty much from Freshman year through graduation.
"You better get going if you want to be there before the bell rings," the redheaded woman smiles softly in understanding, having a pretty good idea as to what's going on in the Assistant Coach's head. Santana returns the smile and nods before turning and leaving the same way she came in.
The blonde bites her bottom lip nervously, eyes darting up and down the hall as she tugs on her Cheerio skirt and rocks back and forth on her heels. She knows that the first glee meeting of the school year is scheduled to officially start in, like, a minute. Yet…no Santana.
Brittany almost yelps when a pair of arms wrap around her waist from behind. "Hey pretty lady, I hope you have a hall pass," a very familiar voice purrs teasingly into her ear, preventing her from crying out or jumping ten feet in the air out of shock.
"No, I don't have a hall pass. Does this mean you're going to have to…punish me?" Brittany smirks coyly, relaxing into the smaller woman's body behind her and grinning when the arms around her waist momentarily tighten.
"Absolutely," Santana chuckles into the head Cheerio's neck. "What are you doing hanging around in the hall Britt?" She wonders, peeking into the choir room.
"Waiting for you of course, Silly," Brittany grins obviously as she turns in the smaller woman's arms. "We always go in together now, remember?" She bumps her shoulder against one of Santana's before holding up a pinky between them.
With a playful eye roll, Santana links her right pinky with her wife's left one. "Of course," she agrees easily, allowing the taller woman to pull her in.
Due to the diminished size of the glee club since graduation last year, the duo doesn't exactly have to compete to get the two chairs in front by the left entrance. Santana sits on the end so that the linked pinkies of their non-dominant hands can continue to hang down between them. They lose themselves in simply smiling at one another, oblivious to their classmates/students. The other members scattered in the room share knowing grins, acknowledging that the couple are too lost in one another to be bothered greeting any of them.
"Hey guys, sorry I'm late," Will Schuester announces as he enters with a flurry of excitement, effectively drawing the newlywed couple from their gaze.
"It's okay Mr. Schue, I'm pretty sure you're not pregnant," Brittany is quick to reassure the teacher, certain that he has no reason to be concerned about being 'late'.
There are a few scattered chuckles and the choir director's familiar look of being lost for words when it comes to understanding Brittany. The only reaction Brittany bothers to pay attention to is the adoring look her wife is shooting her.
"Okay, well…" Will clears his throat uncomfortably, "Welcome to a brand new school year. As you can see, we're desperately in need of more members and-"
"Um, I'm confused. Santana, what are you still doing here? Didn't you graduate last year?" Sam can't help but ask upon seeing his ex-girlfriend.
Santana opens her mouth to, presumably, spew forth a mountain of insults and criticisms. Luckily for the boy, Mr. Schuester answers first. "Actually, as Santana is a temporary member of the McKinley High faculty this year, she has decided to come on as co-director of New Directions with me," he offers his usual cheesy grin as he turns to Santana.
"I see Ms. Pillsbury must have updated you," the Latina smirks, noting his short nod.
"Wait, so it's true?" Artie blurts out, the truth confirmed by Santana's arched eyebrow, Brittany's excited grin and Mr. Schuester's unrestrained enthusiasm. "Oh man, this is going to be one hell of a year," he grumbles, noting the wary looks being shared around the room about this development. He bitterly thinks about how most of them are lucky enough that they only have the Latina in glee club whereas he's also stuck with her for his math class.
"This is going to be the best year ever," Brittany grins, happiness oozing from every word.
"Look, I don't care about all of that," Sugar idly gestures towards the happy couple with her pink gel pen, "as long as I get more solos. Clearly I have more than proven myself to be more talented than everyone else in this room put together…Not Asperger's!" She clarifies the last part followed by a collective groan of annoyance from the others. "I honestly think I am entitled to all the solos and you are all welcome to start lavishing praise on me in regards to my superb singing and dancing abilities," she unabashedly fishes for compliments…which never come.
At the silence, Sugar glances around the room with a scowl. Everyone looks back at her with a look of irritation except Will (who looks uncomfortable), Brittany (gives her two thumbs up and a grin) and Santana (merely smirks in approval). "Whatever," the girl scoffs at everyone but the married couple, arms crossed haughtily, "I am better than all of you," she informs them with certainty.
Santana and Brittany share an amused look as they remember the blonde head Cheerio saying about the same thing after the whole Brittany Spears thing in Junior year. This year just keeps looking better and better.
Soft lips barely brush the sensitive skin along her jaw and by her ear, earning a low, throaty giggle. "That tickles Britt-Britt," Santana hums, eyes closed and lips curved up into a smile as she lies on her back with her wife snuggled up to her side.
The pair is still in bed after tumbling into it with their lips attached almost an hour ago. Then, they managed to slow things down by alternating between cuddling and occasionally making out. Despite both being topless, they've barely even made it to 2nd base. They've been too content exchanging sweet lady kisses and enjoying the feel of their bare skin brushing against one another's.
Rolling to her side to lay face-to-face with her wife, Santana can't help the affectionate smile that forms at the sight of Brittany's flushed cheeks and shy but loving grin, her blue eyes sparkling with pure adoration. Santana reaches up her left hand and places it on Brittany's right cheek, drawing the girl in for another round of kisses. Brittany's right hand resting on the brunette's left hip, just above the waistband of her Cheerios sweatpants, slides around to the dip in the small of Santana's back, running her hand up and down her spine, relishing the feel of the smooth, warm skin under her hand.
"I like being with you like this," Brittany softly murmurs against swollen lips.
"I like it too," Santana mumbles back, smiling into the blonde's mouth.
"I like you," Brittany grins flirtatiously, nudging her nose along the side of Santana's.
Before their lips connect again, a firm knock on the front door of the apartment startles them as they turn their attention towards the door. Since she is decidedly the more clothed than her blonde counterpart – wearing nothing more than her red spankies, white ankle socks and a not-so-innocent smile – Santana gets up, tugging on the t-shirt Brittany threw to her from the floor on her side of the bed.
"It's probably one of our parents or something," the Latina smiles, leaning down to give Brittany a quick kiss. She walks out of the room, closing the bedroom door behind her before going to the door to their apartment. After running her fingers through her hair to tame it into looking like she hadn't been rolling in bed with her wife, she opens the door without a second thought.
"About time Sandbags," a very pregnant Sue Sylvester greets as soon as the door is opened up, stepping into the apartment without an invitation.
Santana stares into the empty hallway for a moment, mouth agape, before shaking her head and closing the door. "Um, hi Coach. What brings you over here?" She wonders cautiously as she starts to recover from her shock, slowly approaching the woman standing in the middle of the main living area of the apartment and scrutinizing everything.
The older woman turns to the teen, taking the brunette's appearance in, her eyes linger on her t-shirt before arching an eyebrow up at the girl. "I have no words," she deadpans. Furrowing her brows, Santana glances down at the pale yellow shirt Brittany gave her to wear before instantly turning red.
Covering the front of the shirt in five lines of type, it reads: VAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAGINAS!
A mortified Santana almost literally face-palms and barely manages to refrain from cursing her wife. She doesn't know if it would have been better or worse if it had actually been one of their parents at the door.
Satisfied in having properly humiliated the girl, Sue gets to the point. "Today my OB/GYN advised me that due to my allegedly 'advanced maternal age'," she begins with a sneer, "it is not recommended that I continue to live alone due to the potential for complications," she states, having jumped right into the topic at hand as though they're mid-conversation and not just now mentioning it.
"Oh…okaaaay," Santana draws out, not sure what the other woman is getting at as she tries to wrack her brain for any family or friends she has.
"My Nazi-hunting parents are obviously not an option and, as you know, I am not exactly on an entirely friendly basis with most, if not all, of my co-workers," Sue prompts the other girl pointedly.
Santana has a pretty good idea as to what Sue's getting at. "Not even Mr. Schue and Ms. Pillsbury?" She arches a brow, not certain whether or not she'd even have considered them in the first place.
"I would never wish to subject my unborn fetus to…that," the older woman sneers as she unconsciously places a protective hand over her swollen belly. In a way, Santana understands that Sue knows she wouldn't be able to handle the happy couple, especially with them planning their wedding. The darker girl doesn't get a chance to reply.
"'Tana, c'mon!" Brittany whines as she opens the bedroom door. "I wants my sweet lady kisses," she elaborates, her tone suggesting a smile is on her face.
Santana blushes once again as soon as the blonde comes into view. Her black Assistant Cheerio Coach t-shirt, which is a pretty snug fit on herself, is a little shorter on the taller girl and reveals a strip of skin around her stomach. The fact that she is even wearing the very same shirt that Santana wore today is more than a little incriminating in terms of what they were doing…or were about to be doing. At least Brittany had the forethought to pull a pair of boxers over her spankies…then again, the aforementioned boxers have the Grinch smiling up at them from the blonde's crotch.
"Hey Britt, Coach Sue was just telling me that her doctor told her that she shouldn't live alone for the rest of her pregnancy," Santana explains in a strained tone.
"Oh, well, if you want to, you're welcome to stay here with us," the blonde shrugs nonchalantly without a second thought. As Sue turns her expectant gaze to Santana, the darker girl nods as well, albeit a little reluctantly.
"Outstanding!" Sue grins enthusiastically in the same terrifying way she usually does right before executing a plot to destroy someone or something (i.e. the glee club). "Well, whichever one of you is supposed to be the man in this relationship can go get my bags out of my car," she instructs, eyes looking back and forth between the newlyweds.
Brittany glances over at her wife, noticing the clenched jaw and the fire burning in her eyes as she tries not to snap at the pregnant tyrant. The blonde really doesn't understand what the coach is trying to say since they're both girls…neither of them even look manly at all. She's just relieved that she doesn't have to say anything when Santana finds her words first…kind of.
"Which one of us do you think is the 'man'?" The Latina growls in distaste and using air quotes before arching an eyebrow up as if to challenge the older woman.
Coach Sylvester scrutinizes the duo, not missing the pale arm that snakes around the smaller girl's waist, instantly calming the seething brunette. "Brittany, my bags are in the trunk," she informs the blonde head Cheerio as she holds her keys out for the other girl.
Biting her bottom lip anxiously, Brittany glances from the keys back to her irritated wife. "I'll be right back, Sweetie," she murmurs softly into the shorter girl's ear before placing a tender, doting kiss on her cheek. With a brief, but affectionate, squeeze, she removes her arm from around Santana's waist, takes the offered set of keys and makes her way out of the apartment to get Sue's belongings.
"You do realize that the bed in the spare room is at least three times smaller than the one at your house, correct?" Santana hostilely questions the coach, choosing to ignore the implications of Sue's opinion regarding who she believes is the 'man' in her relationship with Brittany.
Sue smirks at the obvious avoidance. "It will do for tonight. I have a new bed being delivered here tomorrow afternoon," she casually states.
"What?" The Latina is clearly caught off guard by that.
"IKEA…express shipping from the headquarters in Sweden. You and Mrs. Boobs McGee can put it together tomorrow after school," the coach tells her rather than asks, grinning at the teen's mouth hanging agape. "Think of it as a relationship building exercise…or something," she adds.
Santana opens her mouth to respond, but doesn't get a chance due to the rhythmic thudding making its way down the hall towards the apartment. Furrowing her brow, she shoots a brief look at the other woman before going to the door and poking her head out into the hallway…only to see Brittany lugging two large and, apparently, heavy pieces of luggage with a large duffel bag strapped over her shoulder and swung around to her back. Giving Sue a hard look, Santana rushes out into the hallway to help her wife bring some of the bags in.
Back into the apartment, a red-faced Brittany immediately lets go of the two pieces of luggage, leaning over with her hands on her knees as she tries to catch her breath while Santana brings the heavy duffel bag to the spare room. The darker girl comes back into the living room right as her wife is about to walk right back out of the apartment.
"Where are you going Britt-Britt?" Santana asks curiously.
"To get the rest of Coach Sylvester's bags," the blonde replies obviously, using her thumb to point back over her shoulder in the general direction of the intruding woman's vehicle.
"There's more?!" The incredulous Latina yelps, snapping her head to the Cheerio Coach when Brittan nods. "How long do you plan on staying here?" She questions suspiciously.
"A month and a half, two months maybe," Sue replies nonchalantly before noticing the glazed look on Brittany's face and horrified look on Santana's. "You can't possibly expect me to immediately have to move the second I deliver," she states with a feigned appalled look.
"'Tana, we can't just kick her out when Sue 2.0 pops out," Brittany sympathizes with the older blonde as she turns to her counterpart.
The smug look in Sue's eyes doesn't go unnoticed by the brunette. "I know B, we won't," Santana smiles weakly before turning to her boss…and now, roommate. "You're welcome to stay with us as long as you need to," she manages to say without grimacing.
"Yay! This is going to be epic, I just know it," Brittany beams before turning and practically skipping out of the apartment and down the hall to get the rest of Sue's belongings.
"Think of all the fun we'll have, Roomie," the coach smirks as she pats the petite teen on the back before going to her new room.
"I'm in hell," Santana mutters to herself wondering how things can go so wrong so fast as she stands in the middle of her living room…wearing a shirt that's screaming 'VAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAGINAS!' at no one in particular.
So, what did you think? Was it worth the wait? How do you like the almost-friendship between Santana and Ms. Pillsbury? As I mentioned in my notes in the beginning, this story is pretty much my head-canon for the direction I think Season 4 should have taken…the actual show is simply my nightmare. This story is my alternate reality where the characters are actually written consistently from one 'episode' to the next.
Again, like I mentioned in the beginning notes, this is not going to follow what we actually see on the show this season. I am hesitant to even bring in the new characters brought in because, well, they're boring and kind of like a '2.0' version of a lot of the graduates (Marley is Rachel 2.0, Jake is Puck/Finn 2.0 and Kitty is Season 1-2 Quinn 2.0). Also, seriously, how is Sugar no longer around? While I'm glad Rory is gone, we're still stuck with 'Teen Jesus' Joe, who is lame.
If there's enough demand for any of the new characters (or any character outside of Britt and San) to be a bigger part of this story, let me know and I'll see what I can do. So far, the only one I'm considering even the slightest bit is Kitty. Brittany versus Kitty is such a funny concept to me because, well, as much as Britt loves cats, she kind of hates Kitty. Also, I like any excuse to have Britt's possessiveness and jealousy come out in regards to Santana. I think another blonde Cheerio will definitely be enough to aggravate our favorite Super-Senior…even if Santana is actually married to her and would clearly have no interest in Kitty in the first place.
I'm done ranting now. Anyways, if there's enough support for the 'Kitty jealousy sub-plot'…or for anything else mentioned, then I'll see what I can do.
Also, the shirt that Santana is wearing actually exists and it's sold through ...in case anyone was wondering.
So…thoughts (good or bad)?