The After Party
The gleeks stood in front of the school talking as everyone left. Puckerman passed the extra hotel key to Santana.
"After party, anyone?" he asked. "We've got that room until 12 tomorrow."
"I'm in," Quinn said. "I told my mom I was staying with Santana anyway."
"I have a curfew, Puckerman," Becky said, poking him in the side.
"No worries; I'll get you home. You guys want to go on ahead?"
There were various replies, and people began separating into cars. Quinn went over to Santana and Brittany. "Hey, give me a second?"
"Sure," Santana said. "I'll be making out with Brittany."
Quinn rolled her eyes and laughed. "Hey Rachel!" she called. "Can I have a second?" She didn't miss Finn's scowl as the girl ran over to her.
"Hey," Quinn said, taking her hand.
"I know you wanted this," Rachel told her, pointing to her crown.
"You deserve it. I mean it."
"Thanks…. So what did you want to talk about."
"All that stuff you said earlier? Ditto." She smiled as Rachel blushed. "I know we have a crazy history, but I'm glad we moved past that."
"I am too. Do you want to ride with Finn and me? I have my Dad's Equinox, so we could put your wheelchair in the back."
"I'm riding with Santana," Quinn said. She wasn't about to push her luck with Finn. "Have to keep an eye on her and Brittany."
"You're falling down on your job then," Rachel said, grinning and pointing over to Santana's Hummer.
Quinn sighed. Santana and Brittany hadn't even made it inside the car before jumping each other. "Better get going before this gets X-rated. Knock it off you two!" she yelled.
The hotel room was crowded with all of them there, but not crowded enough apparently, because Finn still cornered her about an hour into the party. Quinn sighed as he sat down next to her. "Can I help you, Finn?"
"Why are you still in that chair?"
"Is that a trick question?"
"You can walk."
"Not this again… Finn, I wanted it to be a moment. Like…a huge moment from the movies, okay? But it didn't matter anyway. Rachel won."
"Somehow I don't believe that."
"That…she won?" Quinn asked, confused.
"Like the entire school voted for her randomly," he said, rolling his eyes.
"That's your fiancé you're talking about, you asshole," Quinn whispered. "And the whole school didn't vote for her. She beat me by two," she lied.
Finn snorted. "So what's your plan? Rig the voting then blame it on her? You get to humiliate her and then get the crown too?"
"You are paranoid as hell if you can't tell that Rachel and I are friends now."
"Sometimes I wonder if that's all you want. She did stop the wedding for you."
"The fuck is that supposed to mean? I was in a car wreck, Finn."
Finn just stared at her.
Joe walked over just then. "Hey," he said awkwardly. "Everything okay?"
"It's fine, Joe," Quinn told him.
"No, it isn't," Finn snapped. "You lied, Quinn."
Everyone turned to look at him.
"So much for this being a private conversation," Quinn muttered.
"What's wrong? Don't want everyone to see how much of a crazy liar you are?"
"Finn, for god's sake—"
"What's going on, you guys?" Rachel asked.
"Tell her," Finn said. "Since you're so hell bent on being her bestie now."
"What?" both Rachel and Quinn asked.
"Sneaking off to talk to each other…acting like the past three years never happened."
"We moved past that, Finn," Rachel said sternly. "What's wrong with you?"
"What's wrong with me is that Quinn's been lying about not being able to walk, just to get prom votes."
"Bullshit, Finndestructible," Santana said. "I tend to assume the worst about people, but even I'm not that conniving, so there's no way Q is."
"I saw her."
"You saw me standing," Quinn corrected. "Which everyone else saw too, later."
"I'm guessing this was before you tried to dump her out of her chair," Joe said.
"What?" Rachel yelped.
"Stay out of this, Joe."
"You tried to what?" Artie asked Finn.
"She was lying!"
"Hold up," Mercedes said. "I know you're not talking. Didn't you fake being in a chair during sophomore year to get a job?"
"She has a point, dude," Puck said.
"She still being the same selfish, psychotic—"
"Hey!" Sam snapped. "That woman helped me through one of the hardest times of my life. She literally bought groceries for my family with her own money when she found out that I hadn't eaten in three days. Watch who you're calling selfish, Hudson."
"You guys are—"
"Enough!" Quinn snapped. "This is our last big night together, guys. I don't want it to end in a fight. So Finn, come here."
"Just do it."
He stood in front of her.
"You've been telling me all night to stand up and walk, so you're going to help me do it."
"Help you?" he asked, confused.
"Yes. If you had let me explain, instead of shouting at me all night, then you'd know that I can't walk very far—not on my own. Pinkie swear you'll catch me when I fall. Note that I said 'when' and not 'if'."
Finn nodded and helped her out of her chair.
Even though it was the second time that night, everyone smiled brightly when they saw Quinn stand. She took about five steps before stumbling. It wasn't Finn who caught her, but Rachel.
"I thought he might be in shock a bit. Are you okay?"
"Tired. But fine."
Sam came over and carried Quinn back to her chair.
"Thanks," she said. "I'm super tired. I think I'm going to call my mom to pick me up."
"I'll drive you," Rachel said.
"You don't have to," Quinn told her quietly. "You can stay if you want."
"It's okay. Come on."
"Rachel—" Finn started.
"Ride home with Kurt and Blaine, Finn. I'll talk to you in the morning." She held the door open for Quinn and with one last wave, followed the girl out.
When they got into the elevator, Quinn turned to look up at her. "Thanks. You didn't have to do this."
"I know. But I wanted to." Rachel paused. "Next year…. We're going to stay in touch, right?"
"Absolutely," Quinn said. "We're only two hours away from each other, too. We'll be able to visit on weekends."
Rachel's smile grew at this. "Good."
Quinn had never been so happy to be in her fuzzy penguin footie pajamas. She'd managed to get herself ready for bed for the first time since her accident, so even though that night had definitely been weird, she was in a good mood.
"Quinnie?" her mom called, knocking on the door.
"Come in!" Quinn said. She snuggled down under the covers and grabbed Game of Thrones off her nightstand.
"This came in the mail for you today. It's from Thomas and Carla…."
They were her parents' friends. They liked Quinn the best out of the family, for some odd reason, and sent her presents for every little occasion. She opened the envelope, and a card fell out. "Congratulations on Yale," she read in the inside. "Use the money for something you want—not something you need. Love, Thom and Auntie C. Holy crap!" she yelped, looking at the check.
"They always did spoil you. 1000 dollars seems a bit excessive."
"I won't let it go to my head," Quinn said, smirking. "Can you hand me my laptop?"
"Oh lord, shopping already."
Quinn laughed as her mom passed her the Mac. "No…just looking something up."
"Well don't stay up to late. Good night." She gave Quinn a kiss on the forehead before leaving the room.
As soon as she'd closed the door, Quinn pulled up Firefox and typed "Metro North passes" into Google.
LbN: Hey, hope you liked it! Just fyi, Fanfic . net's messed with the alert feature, so if you don't add them to contacts and your email provider rejects it, your story alerts won't come through. Go to your alert settings to see how to fix it. :)