"I'm not sure this is a good idea," Rachel said, laughing.
"Everyone has to ice skate here at least once in their life," Brody told her, pulling her out on the ice. "It's in the rules."
"What happens if I fall and break my leg?" she said, wobbling a little.
"Then you can shoot me," he told her. He dropped her hand, skating out in front of her. "Come on!" he said, grinning. "Catch up!"
Finn would have never left her side, Rachel thought. "Shut up," she told herself, shaking her head. Finn wasn't here. He'd made a choice and he'd sent her to New York instead of marrying her. He hadn't called, he hadn't written, and even Kurt didn't know what he was doing.
Rachel had spent the last six months in mourning. She'd made friends, gone to classes, even dated a couple of times. She still wasn't over Finn. Everyone assured her that it was only puppy love and that she'd get over it eventually, but she still hadn't. She still cried every night, still stared at his picture when no one was looking, still wrote him letters she'd stopped sending.
Brody almost tripped over a kid that was skating by and Rachel laughed. Brody was a good friend. She knew that he wanted to be more than that, but right now she didn't have anything more to give. He was extremely handsome, sang like an angel and made her laugh. He wasn't Finn, though. And being Finn was the only thing that really mattered.
Rachel was skating slowly, trying to get the hang of it. Rockefeller Center was probably not the greatest place to try to learn to ice skate, but Brody had been insistent. He'd lived in New York his entire life, and he seemed bent on making his favorite places her favorite places.
"Brody," she called, exhausted though she'd only been skating for five minutes, tops. "Can't we leave?"
Brody skated past her, hands behind his back. Sometimes she wanted to hit him. "You haven't gotten the hang of it yet," he called over his shoulder.
"I'm not going to get the hang of it!" she yelled at him, but he was too far away now to hear her. "Go out with me, he said. It'll be fun, he said," she mumbled under her breath. She looked around at all the couples skating together, holding hands. In truth, she really did want to be here. And she really did want to be skating. Just not with Brody.
Rachel moved around the ice, occasionally catching glimpses of her friend. She felt extremely self-conscious skating (poorly) by herself. If Brody passed by her again, she was going to trip him and use his broken leg as an excuse to leave.
She glared at a kid who rudely brushed past her. "Evil little turd," she said. As soon as she'd spoken, two more went by her, knocking her off balance.
Strong hands caught her, pulling her back against a solid chest. "I've got you," he said, his breath warm against her ear.
It's a good thing he did, because at the sound of his voice, Rachel's knees buckled and her entire body went limp with shock. "Finn?" she asked hoarsely, afraid to turn around. She knew it was him, though. She knew the feel of his hands, of his chest.
Steadying her, he turned her around. "Hey," he said, smiling sheepishly. Rachel stared at the crooked grin she loved so much, unable to talk. Nothing made sense and her brain had officially turned to complete mush. "Rach?"
"Finn?" she said again, shaking her head. "Did I fall?"
"No," he told her. "I caught you."
"Are you really here?" she asked, her heart still racing. She poked his chest and he nodded. "Why?"
He sighed and looked around. "Want to go get a hot chocolate?"
Rachel just stared at him. "What?"
"Do you want to leave, get some cocoa?"
"I don't…I can't…Finn, what the hell are you doing here?" she said loudly. Suddenly she wasn't numb anymore and every emotion she'd felt for the last six months flooded through her body.
"I came to see you," he told her. "I needed to see you."
"Now? You needed to see me now?" She laughed bitterly. "It's been six months, Finn. I haven't talked to you for six months and you expect me to go get hot chocolate with you?" Hot tears scalded her cheeks as she stared at him. "Are you crazy?"
"Don't cry, Rach," he said, wiping her cheeks with his thumbs.
"Hey," Brody said, skating up to them. "Finn, is it?" Finn looked the other man up and down, nodding. "What's going on?"
Finn opened his mouth to say something but Rachel moved closer to her friend. "We're leaving, Brody, okay?"
"Sure," Brody said, looking down at her. "You okay?"
Rachel nodded, taking his hand. As they moved away, Finn called after her. "Rachel, please," he said. "Won't you just talk to me?"
Rachel shook her head as she and Brody reached the edge of the ice. She couldn't unlace her skates because her hands were shaking so badly. Brody noticed and swatted her hands away, unlacing them for her. He didn't speak as they stood and walked back to his car. As they sat, waiting for the engine to warm up, he looked over at her. "So that's Finn, huh?" He'd seen some of Rachel's pictures and had recognized the other man from them.
Rachel looked out the window. "Yes."
"How did he know where you were?"
Rachel shrugged. "I'm sure Kurt told him."
"Do you want to talk about it?"
Rachel looked at him. "I'm not sure what to say," she told him. "I don't know how I feel or what to think."
"He looked pretty upset when we left," Brody told her.
"Good," she said as they pulled away from the curb.