A little bit of Samchel for a prompt by yourkat. Enjoy, buddy.
Summary: A stripe bar was the last place Rachel thought she'd find someone so charming.

Rebel Rebel

Lipstick blotched on Rachel's finger as she dragged it across her bottom lip. She tilted her head up, letting the desk lamp illuminate the rest of her face to examine each angle of her face framed perfectly by the loose curls of brown hair. The silver R gleamed just between her collarbones, drawing Rachel's attention down to it and prompting the question as to why it still hung there.

"It's totally just holding you back," her roommate, a Sugar Motta had rasped one night after they returned from a concert she had been dragged to.

Much like this ladies night out Sugar and some of the other girls on her dorm floor were forcing her to go on. Or maybe it was because she heard the one named Lauren Zizes with the intimidating purse of her lips two doors down claim that Rachel was a stuck up, prissy, bitch who thought she was too good for them and only the classical workings of Mozart could rival as her friend.

Rachel took great offense to that, because no. She wasn't stuck up or prissy and she had friends…well she did have friends - sort of – back in high school. They hung out and they did stuff. They were,

"Crazy and wild and adventurous. Lauren does not poses the right to speak of me in such a way." Rachel had pouted about after Sugar relayed the gossip to her.

And it was that to which Sugar told her to, "Come out with us this weekend. Since you're, you know, so adventurous and all." Right before she whipped her beach towel over her arm and walked out the door to meet up with the others for a pool party over at Brittany Pierce's apartment.

The bathroom door opened, increasing the volume of boy band pop music and Sugar's off key singing. Rachel cringed as her voice scaled up, holding out a note that hung over after she switched off the bathroom radio and padded across the floor to her bed across the way.

"You ready?" asked Sugar once the note died away just like Rachel's eardrums had just been definitely murdered. "We're meeting Britt and S there, so hurry up."

Rachel picked up her eyeliner, dragging it on her lower lid. "You're the one who just got out of the shower."

"You're the one who just got out of the shower," Sugar mocked in a squeaky tone that was nowhere near Rachel's but she claimed it was exactly how her roommate spoke. "Just hurry, kay? I don't want to be late,"

"I promise you I am, and always have been, punctual," Rachel fluttered her lashes, taking note of how the dark make up brought out her eyes.

She had never been one for make up. She enjoyed the natural tones of her skin that were in perfect proportion to the shades of brown in her hair and hue of her eyes. But tonight was a special night. Tonight was the night to show Lauren just how daring and exciting she could be. Even if the heels she was going to wear cut into the back of her ankles and the skirt was tight enough to show every single curve of her body. She would get over it. She would put aside her insecurities for the night if only to prove them all wrong. Because tonight they were…they were-

"Sugar," Rachel turned in her swivel chair at her desk to watch Sugar, already dressed in a silver sequin dress and gladiator sandals, switch between a pair of studded earrings to a pair of dangling, silver diamonds that were no doubt real.

"Hmm?" she hummed, making a spin in the full-length mirror she had propped up against her desk.

"Where exactly are we going?"

"Some club," sad Sugar. She tugged down on the dress having ridden up in her turn. "Lauren's idea. Says an old friend works there."

Rachel's eyes narrowed. Any club Lauren suggested had to have something to do with Mortal Combat. Rachel had once banged on her dorm door asking if she could keep down the profanities she was yelling at her Halo players in her headset. To say Lauren took it well would be a down right lie.

"What, um," her hair twirled around an index finger. "What sort of club?"

"I don't know, I don't care," Sugars lips pressed together and rubbed to spread the gloss evenly. "A club is a club is a club," she stood up straight, lips making a pop and turned to Rachel. "Ready?"

"Sure," Rachel pushed on a smile and grabbed her clutch. "We can go,"


"A strip club?" Rachel blanched, staring at the neon pink sign that blinked above a place called Rebel Rebel.

She should've known it was going to be a place like that having driven away from downtown where the hottest and best clubs were and took to the outlaying establishments known for their sketch. But for some reason Rachel was still stuck on AnimeCon cosplay and gamer nerds yelling into headsets.

"No," she turned back towards the car, hand tugging on the handle to the backseat. "No, no, no. Me and strippers do not mix."

"Chill out, Berry," Santana said in a dull tone. She came around the car in a skintight red dress to stand beside Brittany, fingers intertwining together. "This place has class,"

Rachel stared at her incredulously. Class? Class was the ball gown she had purchased to wear to the masquerade themed Halloween party that the university had thrown. She hadn't the privilege to wear it when Sugar said the business major, who was Santana though Rachel hadn't known it at the time, invited her to some Halloween Trick-or-Treat bash. Rachel begrudgingly went and was well acquainted with Santana Lopez and her mile long legged girlfriend Brittany.

"If there's anyone who know should know about class, Santana, I'm sure it's you." Rachel muttered.

"Rachel that was mean," Brittany frowned, hand tightening on Santana's which instantly cut off the stream of words Rachel knew wanted to spew out and slap her up side the head.

"I apologize, but," she watched as another group of girls chattering loudly walked across the parking lot and slipped through the frosted glass, double doors. Her voice dropped. "It's a strip club,"

"So what? It's edgy," Lauren's fingers twiddled in the air, mocking something Rachel had said to Sugar and only Sugar. She shot a look over her shoulder at Sugar just rounding the car with her head angled down at her cell phone and backlight lighting up the pinks and red tones of blush and gloss on her face. Rachel's glare went unnoticed.

"Whatever, I'm going in," Santana sighed, tugging Brittany's hand to follow. "Berry, you can be a total buzz kill and sulk on the curb. I can assure you, your presence won't be missed."

"Fine," Rachel pouted, following on the heels of the others into the club.

She slipped in last, body just slinking in between the heavy door. Trance music vibrated the floor with its mellow bass and multicolored lights flashed into Rachel's wide eyes. She held up a hand to shield her corneas of the blinding, white laser, hurrying to catch up with the group that was making way to a long table off towards the back.

"Wow, Lauren," said Santana, slipping off her coat. She helped Brittany shrug out of hers and place it on the back of a chair. "Didn't think you and your nerdy, 8bit ass had a place like this in your back pocket- Oh, my god, look at the size of his-"

"Drinks, anyone?" Sugar piped, effectively cutting off whatever vulgar body part Santana was referring to on the nicely sculpted, melted caramel toned, man with the short, tight silver hot pants and suspenders on stage twirling a top hat on his finger. "First rounds on me,"

"Yeah," Lauren drawled, slipping off her glasses and folded them to put into a case. "Much better than that dive of a lady-lovers place you took us to."

Santana glared. "It was not a dive, Britt loves that place."

"I love that place," Brittany nodded.

"Tits and tassels are so generic," Lauren waved them off. "Total lack of creativity,"

"Right," Santana's arms crossed over her chest. "Because the Village People up there is so original,"

Rachel shielded her eyes. "What is he wearing?"

"Too much, that's what," said Lauren getting out of her chair. She pushed passed two girls headed towards the stage where a group of guys were performing YMCA in hardly anything.

"Come on," Brittany yanked on Santana's hand following after Lauren and a handful of dollars in hand.

Rachel lumped into a chair, pursed tucked and held tightly under her arm. She could see Brittany's hand waving high with a dollar in her fingers. One of the men jiving and gyrating across stage made way over to her. The dollar slipped into one of his belt loops and Brittany squealed, hands clapping.

Rachel turned away, hand covering her laugh as Sugar came up to the table with a round of shots on a tray. "Where's everyone? What're you still doing here? Come on," she tugged on Rachel's arm.

"I'm fine here, Sugar," She batted her away. "You go on ahead."

"Here," Sugar picked up a shot glass. She held it in front of Rachel's face. "Drink it,"

Her eyes narrowed, bouncing back from the annoyance on Sugar's face to the brackish liquid in the glass. "Why?"

"It's good, drink it," Taking it, Rachel took it in one wincing gulp. She felt it burn in her throat and tingle her tongue. Another was presented to her and she took it hoping it would dilute the already present sting. It only made it worse and she waved away the third.

"Someone has to be designated driver and I highly doubt Lauren is staying anywhere close to sober with the way she's already acting."

"No one cares, let's go Rachel. You're being a fun ruiner," Before she could protest, Sugar yanked her out of her seat.

She lead them through the crowd, squeezing between a middle-aged woman with a whooping holler and neon green eye shadow. The heat around the stage grew with the pulsing lights and the press of bodies. Rachel stopped just at the edge of the raised platform, lips smacking in attempt to get tha stale taste of alohol out of her mouth. She wondered how long it would take foe it to wear off and-

"Clap," Sugar demanded and Rachel clapped as the next act came out.

A quartet of guys dressed in various styles of spacemen came walking out the curtain off to the side of the stage. She kept it quiet that the song Space Jam didn't have much to do with space, but the boys were having fun fake fighting with light sabers in their shining gold shorts and space helmets.

Dollars decorated the stage and one of the staff pushed across the front of the crowd to collect it into a bucket. An uproar in the audience grabbed Rachel's attention from the opposite side of the stage. The spacemen had water guns in hand, squirting them out at the ladies.

"Oh, my god," Rachel shook her head at Santana who had her mouth wide open trying to catch a stream of water. "Oh," she stumbled back, getting hit into the side by Sugar who was trying to avoid getting hit by the spray.

Rachel raised a hand to shield herself from the little, orange party gun a guy dressed like a space cowboy in chaps and helmet was holding right at her.

"No, please don't," she squinted, readying for the squirt as he crouched down in front of them.

Slowly, he lifted the helmet off his head so black hair flopped out over his forehead. Piercing blue eyes stared down at Rachel accompanied by an unexpected charming smile.

"Can I have that?" asked Sugar, pressing forward and pointing at the water gun.

"Sure," he shrugged. Outstretching a hand, he held out the water gun towards Sugar. She hesitated a moment before taking it and sprayed him a few times with it. "And this is for you,"

Rachel went still as the plastic helmet was placed on her head. Tilting it up, she saw the space cowboy rise up and walk away, waving to the cheering crowd. Laughing, Rachel clapped, head shaking as they made way towards the curtain and out of sight.

"Having fun?" Brittany nudged her in the side as the lights grew dim and only red lights colored the stage.

"I suppose," Rachel downplayed, new music starting to rumble the bass in her chest. "I never thought I would, but I guess I am."

Brittany grinned, mouth opening to speak when Lauren's voice yelled out to them. Rachel turned the direction of Lauren's pointing finger to a guy, blonde hair and green eyes draped in a silky, red robe. She only the chance to read, "that's him," off Lauren's lips before them him stripped his robe to stand in a pair of tight gold shorts and equality as silky and Rachel's jaw was on the floor.

There were two other guys with him. One with sculpted, brown hair and a conniving smirk and another with a shaved Mohawk and golden nipple rings each clad in a pair of silky shorts beneath the robes fiercely striped away, but It was the blonde's whose were Bounty crisp, and stark. And dang, boy could move his hips.

A set of fingers touched Rachel's chin, shutting her mouth. Embarrassed, she blinked away to see Brittany's eyebrows waggle suggestively. Rachel rolled her eyes, lip pouting. Brittany only laughed.

"Lauren says that's Sam," she said over the music. Rachel could see Lauren down beside Sugar waving a handful of dollars at him and hands cupping mouths to shout approval. "They wore a halo together,"

"You mean played Halo together?" Rachel corrected. Brittany shrugged and turned away to receive a new drink Santana had brought back from the bar.

Rachel turned back towards the stage, watching Sam make his way across the front of the stage, lip synching to the by band song. Sinking to his knees, he strummed an air guitar in front of the ladies getting probably more than twenty bucks from the money tucked into the waistband of his shorts.

She shook her head, watching Sugar inch her hand up little by little up his thigh until he rose, turned towards Rachel and winked. Flustered, she looked away, holding the helmet tightly on her head as she stared at the ground.

The noise around her grew and it took Rachel all but too long to realize it was because Sam had made his way to her side of the stage and was down on his knees again, air guitar in hand. His wide mouth tugged back in a smile, head titled and eyes narrowed as he took her in.

"Aren't you a little short for a storm trooper?" he said, voice smooth and loud even over the music. Reaching down, Sam gabbed the helmet off her head and placed it on his own before getting up to join the other two boys for the next verse.

She could hear the boys lip-synching under the tune all off key and not matching. Her eyes zeroed on Sam, watching the way the muscles in his stomach tightened with each body roll. The ladies in the bar yelled out, getting their money in where they could.

Green eyes found Rachel again from under the plastic helmet. She grinned then flushed at the wink he sent her way.

"Give me a dollar," Rachel muttered, voice getting lost in the hype. She tapped Brittany beside her. "Brittany, give me a dollar,"


"A dollar," Rachel hissed, turning toward Brittany. "Quickly,"

"Oh," fumbling around in her dress, Brittany pulled out a wrinkled bill from her bra. "Here,"

She snatched the buck wiggling herself through the crowd to get to the end of the stage before the guys went through the curtain. The applause was roaring and they were getting away but Rachel kept her hand up, dollar waving in the air like a flag, stopping Sam just before he could follow under the curtains slap.

An eyebrow lifted. "For moi?" he said.

"Yes, well," Rachel stammered. "If you'll- if you'll have it,"

Sam laughed throaty, knees bending to put him nearly eye level with her. Rachel locked onto green eyes, breath hitching as his hand grabbed hold of hers that held the dollar and brought it down so it was between them. And like a fly to a light bulb, she found herself drawing forward

"Maria," he plucked the dollar from her had, holding it to his chest. "I felt, I knew something never before was going to happen, had to happen. But this is so much more."

"Off the stage, lover boy," the one with the Mohawk grabbed Sam by the elbow, tugging him up and through the curtain.


"Who was the father of economics?"

Santana narrowed her eyes across the table at Brittany holding a flash index card. "Is that really the question?"

"Maybe," Brittany grinned. Santana pursed her lips and Brittany faltered. "No, but that's the only thing I remember. This question is…"

Rachel tuned them out, turning back towards her music theory book. They were all down in the dorm's longue, taking up the large round table with books and papers scattered about it. Sugar sat to Rachel's right, music blaring from her ear buds, singing lyrics under her breath and grooving in her seat. Her pencil occasionally scribbled in an answer on her history review.

In front of her, Brittany continued to ask a bored Santana questions off her flash cards for her Business midterm while Brittany's own work went untouched. Not that she had much to study for. Majoring in dance, she only had one midterm and it was English of all things.

Lauren swore into her headset, fingers punching at the game controller over in front of the large, flat screen on the wall. "Each wrong answer, another kill shot," she said to whatever poor soul was on the other end. Rachel raised her eyebrows impressed. That was an effective way to study.

"This place is boring," Santana groaned, leaning her forehead on the table. "Why aren't we at me and B's apartment? At least we could drink,"

"Which is exactly why we're studying here," Rachel sounded off. She flipped a page in her book, being bombarded with alto clefs and tenor clefs and how to transpose them into treble and bass. She pinched the bridge of her nose. "How do you ever expect to study and retain knowledge whilst intoxicated?"

"We could make it interesting," Santana shrugged.

"Oh," Brittany dropped the flashcard she was holding. "Like, we each ask each other a question and if you get it wrong you have to take off something. Like strip poker but without the chips."

Rachel looked away at her half filled in review. "I'm not sure,"

"Not sure about what?" Santana snapped. "Better than sitting in this ward. How can I even concentrate with Lauren's banshee screaming over there?"

"Lopez, I will end you," Lauren shot back.

Rachel raised her hands in defense. "We're not going to your apartment and we're not playing strip study or whatever you call it."

She saw Brittany's lip poke out in defeat while Santana mocked her under her breath and opened her laptop. Rachel went back to her book, eyeing Sugar dancing and singing into the eraser of her pencil out the corner of her eye. She was trying hard to figure out what it was that Sugar was singing, she almost missed it when Brittany leaned over and whispered to Santana,

"She'd come if Sam was there,"

Rachel's neck snapped up, her eyes wide against Santana's spreading smirk and narrowed gaze. "What did you say?"

"No, you tell us, Rachel," Santana's grin broadened making her shift in her seat. Sugar pulled out one ear bud to listen in. "What did Tony say to his Maria?" she taunted in an accent.

Rachel waved her off, rolling her eyes down to her work. "Honestly, Santana, that was a week ago."

"Who knew cheesy musical lines made Berry all hot and bothered?" Santana casted.

And Rachel took the bait, head shooting back up. "West Side Story is not cheesy,"

"But that dreamy look in your eyes was," Santana nudged Brittany in the side, laughing before she could get her next words out. "How'd she look, B? Do the face,"

Rachel glared through her lashes, watching Brittany's eye widen and her mouth drop open as she stared off in the distance. It was the single most, dopiest look Rachel had ever seen. What made it worse, was that it was probably an accurate portrayal of her from that night.

Santana's laugh was deep and throaty with Brittany's bubbling on top and Sugar's masked behind a hand.

Rachel schooled her face in the most dismissive expression she could make. "He was nice, that's all,"

"The boys a stripper," Santana said, sobered from her laugh. "You didn't even want to go near that place because you were overreacting about communicable diseases and pornographic images. I highly doubt you'd get all rough and tumble with a dirty boy."

"I never said I wanted to sleep with him, all I said was that he was nice. I had a nice experience." Rachel ticked, her pencil scratching out across her paper with force. "So you can stop tainting my wonderful memory with your raunchy fantasies and allow me to get back to work."

"Whatever," she spat, lamely. "Quiz me, Britt,"

Brittany gleefully picked up another flashcard and began spouting off the question. Dryly, Santana answered her while another uproar came from the couch Lauren was now sprawled on taking up all the cushions. Both of Sugar's ear buds were back in and buzzing and Rachel's eyes were scanning the words on 4ths and 5ths, minor falls and major lifts but her mind was back on that night.

She hadn't thought much about it after all the teasing Sugar had given her when they got back to their dorm. But now Rachel remembered Sam's soft hand on hers and his voice tweaked with a terrible accent and green eyes all ablaze.

Rachel laughed to herself, head shaking to regain focus and drew the lines of a staff in her notebook. It had been a fun while it lasted.


Rachel closed her umbrella, shaking it out over the large rug just on the inside of the cafeteria's sliding doors. Wiping her rain boots off, she walked further inside the quiet hall. Students were spread out over the large space, most heads angled over books and notebooks. Rachel's own bag full of material, most of which was no longer needed with only one more midterm to go for the day, weighed down heavily on her shoulder.

She padded through the cafeteria, grabbing a tray and ordered a lettuce wrap at one of the stations then hurried to the cashier to pay. She had forgotten to pack her lunch that morning in haste to get to her fist midterm early enough to study with a few others, and the food in the cafeteria was way below Rachel's standards of food, but it was decent enough.

Walking from the cashier, she picked up a roll of silverware for her bowl of fruit and set out to find a table near the back where she wouldn't be disturb. A booth for two presented itself the best choice and Rachel sat down, pulling out her ipod to listening to music while she ate.

She was mid-bite on a piece of honeydew melon when she caught the eye of someone sitting two booths down from her. Their eyes caught for a moment. Rachel offered a gentle smile out of courtesy and looked away to see her phone lit up and vibrating on the table.

"Hello?" she whispered in an answer.

"Rachel!" Sugar said excitedly. "Where are you? I just got down with my midterm and I'm hungry."

"Uh," she blinked back up. Cool green eyes from across the room met her again. She took the time to note the forest green beanie drawn over blonde hair that peeked from beneath the rim. Rachel narrowed her eyes. He looked-


"Sugar, stop yelling," she hissed in a whispered. A forkful of melon popped into her mouth. "I'm in the cafeteria,"

"Awesome. I'll be there-"

"I already ordered," she cut her off, forking another bit of fruit. She heard the booth down from her groan as the guy in it got up and started walking. "And then I have to hurry over to the music building to-"

"Hey," a warm voice drew Rachel's eyes up to be greeted with a wide smile.

"Hey," Rachel slid the phone off her ear. She could hear Sugar saying something about she'd be quick and not wanting to eat alone. Her eyes narrowed. "Do I- do I know you?"

His smile broadened "What you know you can't explain, but you feel it. You've felt it your entire life."

"What?" her brow furrowed.

"Morpheus. The Matrix?" He tried. Rachel shook her head slowly from left to right. "Neo, you're the chosen…no?"

Rachel grimaced, frowning. "Sorry, no," there was a scream from the speaker on her phone. "Hold on, please," she brought it back to hear ear to hear Sugar repeating her name in various inflections. "Hey, Sugar, I have to go."

"Party pooper," Sugar ticked.

Rachel hit the end button as the guy slid into the booth opposite her. He ran his hand through his hair. "It was a long shot. Can't blame a guy for trying." Sitting back, he picked up Rachel's unused knife and started tapping it on the tabletop. "You got my West Side Story right on. Or, uh, I think you did."

"Oh!" Rachel's brain caught up with her and she flushed. Sam. This was Sam. Stripper Sam. Cute, stripper Sam with the smile that made Rachel's heart do a tiny flutter. "Yes, yes of course I got it. I love that musical. Did you know I stared as Maria in my high school production of it? Hardest auditions I've ever-" Rachel cut herself off, cheeks burning at the amused grin Sam was giving her. "I'm rambling. Sorry,"

"It's cool. Musicals are cool," he shrugged, pulling off his beanie. His hair was different than it had been at the club. There it had swooped across his forehead all bleach blonde and bright. Here it was more golden and fashioned and riddled with the fewest drops of rain. "I was Rocky once."

"Oh," Rachel bit the inside of her cheek. Her mind brought about images of Rocky Horror and Rocky and gold shorts and Sam in gold shorts and-

Sam grimaced slightly. "Never been so self conscious in my life,"

That's not really what she was thinking, "but you're a stripper," it fell out of Rachel's mouth before she could think about it.

"Yeah," Sam smiled uncomfortably, eyes dropping away for a moment. "Guess I got over it then."

"No, no, I'm sorry," Rachel tried to save. "I didn't mean it like- I'm sorry,"

"It's okay," he backed it up with a reassuring smile that eased Rachel some. "I'm Sam by the way,"

"I know," she said then backtracked at how odd that sounded. "I mean, I know because of Lauren- Lauren Zizes? We stay in the same dorm. It was her idea to go there that night. I don't usually…" she trailed off, looking away from curious green eyes. "Not that I wouldn't. You're very talented so…"

"When I was ten," Sam began, giving Rachel time to recollect herself and reapply the filter on herm mouth that had seemingly gone away. "I didn't exactly go up to my parents and tell them I wanted to be a stripper when I grew it. It just happened, you know?"

"Yeah," Rachel slowly looked back up. Sam was still smiling that wide, amused smile. It was such a contagious thing, his smile. "Yeah, I guess so," she felt her lips spread on their own, tucking a strand of hair behind her ear. "I'm Rachel,"

"Rachel," he repeated her name, making it sound like her name was original and unique the way it rolled off his tongue uncertain. "Well, Rachel, thanks for coming to see me dance." He said. Rachel blinked in surprise. "It's not every night I have girls chase me down to give me dollars personally."

"God, that was embarrassing," her face fell into her hands. All she could see was Brittany's ridiculous imitation of her.

She had no doubt she had looked just like that. Her face burned, spreading the heat up her ears and down the back of her neck. She wasn't even shedding layers of clothes for all eyes to see, and she was the flustered one.

Sam chucked softly. "It was sweet,"

Rachel waved a hand, picking up a piece of watermelon to eat with the other. "You're just being nice,"

"Of course I am," he said in mock offense. Rachel took it as real and frowned at the crease in his brow. "If I weren't a decent guy, how do I expect to you to let me walk you to your next class?"

Rachel cocked an eyebrow, jaw still moving as she chewed. She swallowed quickly. "Are you offering?"

Sam mirrored her expression, stealing one of Rachel's grapes, smacking as he spoke. "If you're willing,"

"I am," she smacked at his hand trying to take her strawberry. Those were not up for grabs. "I am. Very," she nearly blurted then laughed shyly. "I mean, thank you. That's very generous,"

"You're very pretty," Sam spouted off immediately and Rachel blanched. She snatched away the napkin Sam offered to her, dabbing at her lips at the bit of pineapple juice that dotted her chin when she bit into it. "I bet you say that a lot,"

Sam face scrunched up, his nose kinking up adorably on one side. "Not every time I mean it,"

Rachel felt her cheeks burn. She ducked her head, hiding her blush behind the napkin as she cleaned off her mouth and threw it on her empty tray. Punching a button on her phone, the screen lit up flashing her the time. It was half an hour before her next test, but it would take almost half that to get to the room.

"I should go," she said, starting to get up with her tray.

Sam grabbed the other end of it, taking it from Rachel's grasp. "Allow me," he flashed a charming smile over his shoulder.

Rachel laughed, hand running nervously through her hair as she watched Sam walk over to the trashcan where he dumped it off. Placing the tray on a rack, he walked back to stand next to Rachel, elbow held out.

Shel blinked from it up to Sam. He nodded, wiggling his elbow. Rachel playfully rolled her eyes as she strung her arm through it. "You're really something else,"

"Better that then nothing," he said, leading them through the cafeteria.

Before they could step outside, Rachel popped open her umbrella. Sam plucked it out of her hand to hold above the both of them. Otherwise, his head would've been in the spokes had she been the one holding it.

"Where to, m'lady?"

"Music building," Rachel pointed to where you could see the roof of the gray building poking out from above the others.

The rain pattered on the top of the umbrella in a roaring chorus as they walked. Rachel drew closer to Sam as to keep her shoulder from getting sprinkled on. She could hear him humming something under his breath. It took Rachel only a second before she recognized Time Warp and started to hum along as they walked through puddles.

"You know," started Sam after they sobered from laughing at the end of the song. "You have to tip your escorts,"

Rachel turned up to look up into his eyes that were darker and richer in the shade of the umbrella. "And what is the fee?" she grinned.

Sam stopped them just outside the doors of the music building, turning to face her. His head ducked, eyes faltering for the first time and ears turning a rosy pink. "Come see me dance again?"

Rachel chewed on her bottom lip, her mind reeling through all the things she'd be hearing from Santana about this. But maybe…maybe Rachel didn't care what Santana had to say.

"Okay," she answered. Sam's face lit up, finally making eye contact with her again. Rachel felt the skip in her chest at seeing the brightness of his smile. "I will,"

"Cool. Then I'll wait and escort you after your test."

"Oh, Sam," Rachel tried. "You don't-"

"I'll be back," He quoted, voice dropped low and eyes narrowed to slits.

Rachel's laugh bubbled from a place deep in her stomach, taking the umbrella from Sam's hand and pushing away from him. "Get outta here," she played back, earning an approving fist bump.

Turning away, she hurried up the steps and into the music building, Time Warp, on her lips and The Matrix on her list of movies to add to her Netflix instant queue.