Colorful plastic spires rose for what seemed like miles high to the small blonde looking up at them. Daunting with the way high pitched squeals of excitement bled from the insides of it as if children lived in the tunnels of plastic. There was a boy atop with a Mohawk who had spotted her and was waving enthusiastically for her to come up.
She took a step back and bumped into her fathers leg.
"Quinnie honey," her daddy spoke softly and kneeled down beside her so he could look into her fear stricken hazel eyes, "it's okay. Go play. I'll be sitting right over there if you need me." Quinn followed his pointed finger to a bench just a little ways off from the jungle gym of death. The small blonde was not excited as the other kids were to play on this toy. The idea of running around screaming with a bunch of other stranger kids was not an appealing one to her. This whole thing had been her fathers idea. Quinn had been content playing in the backyard with her sister at home but her sister had a dentist appointment today so Daddy had brought Quinn to this place.
She was terrified. She didn't know anyone and she didn't want to because they scared her. They were loud and there were boys up there. Boys were mean and icky.
"Okay Daddy." Russell nodded and kisses his daughter on the head before making his way over to the bench. She watched him pull out his glasses and a news paper to read. Quinn desperately wanted to just go sit on his lap and curl into him while he read so the other kids wouldn't see her.
But it was to late for that, they had already spotted her and two of them were walking towards her. A small girl with really tan skin and dark hair with her pinkie linked with a little bit taller blonde who was smiling sweetly at Quinn.
When they reached her Quinn pulled her scarf up to cover her nose and mouth, trying to hide as much as possible.
"Hi." The smaller brunette spoke, "I'm Santana." Her S's had a bit of a lisp to them because, Quinn noticed, she was missing two teeth. One of her big teeth and one on her lower row of teeth. Subconsciously Quinn ran her small tongue over the empty space where her baby tooth had been a week ago before she lost it eating an apple. She had cried when she felt it gone and got a splash of blood on her snack. Judy, her mommy, had hugged her and told her that it was alright and that it was perfectly normal for girls her age to loose teeth. Now that Quinn was finally seeing it was true she felt somewhat better about her missing friend.
"And I'm Brittney! Wanna play wif us?" The taller blonde clapped excitedly, hopping from one foot to the other. She had all her teeth. Quinn pouted.
"No thank you. I don't wanna go up there." Brittney's face fell and she stopped hopping. Santana turned to look up at her friend, frowning at her sadness.
"Um…" Quinn chewed on her lip, glancing from side to side to come up with an answer. To the left of the play gym was a fairly large sandbox that a lone girl was playing in with a couple of cars. She was small and wrapped up in a bubble gum pink parka that her boots matched. Even all by herself she looked like she was having fun. Her lips were moving fast as she was either making car sounds or talking to herself.
Quinn pointed her finger at her, "That's my fran I'm 'spose to play with."
Santana's eyebrows furrowed and she frowned deeply, "Your frien's with Berry? No body plays with her. She's weird. Finn told me so."
Quinn stomped her foot and folded her arms, glaring at Santana, "She's not weird!"
"Is so, is so, is so! And your weird too for playing wif her!" Santana stuck her tongue out at Quinn before dragging Brittney back to the toy to play.
Quinn huffed and stomped off in the direction of the parka girl playing in the sandbox. Once she was closer Quinn noticed a pair of men leaning against one another sitting on a bench watching the girl as she played, both of them grinning. One of them must have been her Daddy. Maybe the other one was her Daddy's friend?
The tip of Quinn's sneaker hit the edge of the sandbox, alerting the parka girl of her presence. Her tiny hands released the yellow SUV and the pink bug car and she froze in place. Like she was scared of Quinn. Why would she be scared of Quinn? The blond girl pulled out her small blue teddy bear from her pocket, hugging him to her chest as she stepped into the sand pit and walked over to the girl.
The girl picked her head up to look at Quinn with scared brown eyes.
"Hi," Quinn spoke softly, holding her teddy bear out for the girl to look at, "This is George. And I'm Quinn. Can we play with you?"
The girl hesitated, looking behind her to look at the men on the bench who were nodding enthusiastically, then turned back to Quinn and smiled very smally. Her hand reached up to take Quinn's and pulled her down into the sand beside her, flush against the girls side, and patted George's head.
"Hello George. I'm Rachel Barbra Berry." Quinn smiled at the girl's name. It was funny but she liked it, "I'd like it if you two played with me."
"George likes your name." Quinn set her beloved bear on Rachel's lap so that the girl could continue to pet his blue fur. Rachel's eyes grew wider as did her smile.
"Really?" Quinn nodded and Rachel reached over to give Quinn a side armed hug.
"I like your name too George."
Behind her Quinn heard the men on the bench talking but they were a little bit to far away for her to understand what they were saying. She glanced over her shoulder at them. One shorter man wearing glasses was talking happily, using a lot of hand gestures to speak to the smiling darker skinned man with his arm draped over the back of the bench. When the darker skinned man noticed Quinn watching he waved. She waved back.
"Who are they?" Rachel turned to look for whom Quinn was talking about. Quinn's new friend frowned and ducked her head sadly when she realized who Quinn was asking about.
"Those are my Dad's." Her voice sounded so sad Quinn couldn't stop herself from hugging Rachel. The girls head fit under Quinn's chin nicely and the smaller girls arms looped around Quinn's waist, bringing George to rest between them.
"Dad's? You have two?"
"Yeah…the other kids call me weird for it." Even though her voice was muffled by Quinn's jacket, Quinn could hear that it had become thick with tears. Warm wetness struck Quinn's neck, rolling down to soak into the neckline of her shirt. A few sniffs escaped Rachel so Quinn hugged her tighter, patting her back reassuringly.
"I don't think it's weird."
Rachel pulled back just a little so she could look up at Quinn, heavy tears still rolling down her cheeks.
"You…you don't?" Quinn shook her head and used her sleeve to wipe Rachel's tears away before pulling her back into a much tighter hug.
"No way. Having two Daddy's would be cool. I'd never have to wear dresses and stuff!" Rachel giggled and so did Quinn.
"I still wear dresses Quinn but because I wanna, not cause Daddy or Dad makes me."
"Oh well, that's cool. My Mamma makes me wear pretty dresses. I'm not allowed to play in them or they would get dirty. I hate it." To prove her point Quinn pouted and Rachel giggled again. She picked up George and set him in the convertible blue car Rachel had beside her and handed it to Quinn.
Together they drove their cars through the sand, making up voices for the drivers and talking to one another for hours. George's car was expensive because he owned the bank that Mrs. Yellow Car had to get her money from but she couldn't because Pink Bug Car was in the way. The cop car ended up having to come and settle the problem. Rachel lowered her voice until it was gruff and somewhat boyish when she did the cops voice and it had made Quinn giggle uncontrollably. The girls were having so much fun together that neither of them noticed the approach of Quinn's father until he came up behind the blond girl and scooped her up in his arms, leaving her squealing loudly and kicking her tiny feet.
"Daddy put me down! George was helping the cop with getting Mrs. Yellow Car her moneys!"
Russell laughed his low, full hearted laugh that vibrated through his daughters back, "You sound like your having fun Quinnie." He set her feet back on the ground and knelt down to reach his hand out for Rachel to shake. Quinn's friend looked nervous and looked over her shoulder to check with her fathers whom were making there way over to them.
"Hello Sir, you must be this little angels father." The shorter man with glasses spoke, reaching out to shake Russell's hand. Russell laughed again, looking down at his daughter lovingly.
"Indeed I am..?"
"Hiram. And this is my husband Leroy." Russell's eyebrows rose but if it bothered him he didn't say anything, he merely reached his hand out to shake Leroy's hand as well.
"It would seem our girl's have hit it off don't you think?" The three fathers laughed good naturally, looking down at their respective daughters whom had ignored the exchange entirely, opting instead to go back to their game. Quinn was voicing George's option about how he thought the Cop's car was very pretty. And Rachel did her low man voice that made Quinn giggle every time.
"It would seem so," Leroy smiled genuine, glad that his daughter finally found a friend, "And it couldn't have come at a better time."
Quinn shook her head to clear herself of the memory from many, many years ago. That first day she had spent with Rachel blossomed into more play dates that turned into sleepovers then a strong friendship in the classes they had inevitably shared until Quinn had asked Rachel out in high school. Rachel had practically tackled Quinn in a hug and placed kisses all over Quinn's face, murmuring yes's in between each kiss. Their relationship was a strong one that lasted all throughout high school and college until Quinn had moved in with Rachel in New York. Only a few months after living together they had asked one another to marry each other. Because as it would seem they had both the same thought and proposed to one another at the same time. They had shared laughs about it, said yes, put each others rings on, and made love until the sun came up. Life hadn't been easy for them but they had always had one another and that was really all they ever needed. All because Quinn's dad had brought her to a playground and Quinn had been to scared to play with all the other kids.
"Mamma…" Quinn looked down at her brunette daughter clinging tightly to her leg, staring at the playground toys with wide eyes. Quinn placed her hand atop her daughters head, combing her fingers through the soft hair soothingly.
"It's okay Chloe, go play. Your Mom and I are going to be right there the whole time if you need us," Quinn gestured to her wife sitting on the bench, waving and smiling at their daughter whom was still terrified, "Okay baby?"
Chloe bit her lip, glancing around the playground with wide green eyes before nodding, "Okay Mamma."
Quinn pulled a small stuffed bear from her pocket and knelt down to hand it to her daughter, kissing her on the head and sending her off. Her hazel eyes watched her daughter walk slowly across the playground, by passing the toy entirely, to the swing set. Another girl who was swinging all by herself waved at Chloe and patted the swing beside her, smiling. Quinn smiled to herself when her daughter smiled back and started swinging beside the other girl.
"Quinn." The blond turned to look at her smiling wife whom was beckoning Quinn to come sit beside her. Quinn didn't make her wait. She laced her fingers through her wife's, dropping their hands in her lap, and moved against Rachel's side. Her wife dropped her head onto Quinn's shoulder and let out a contented sigh.
"This looks familiar doesn't it?" Quinn gestured towards their daughter who was introducing her stuffed bear, Lilly, to the other girl.
Rachel laughed softly, squeezing Quinn's fingers with her own, "I'm so glad you came to play with me that day."
Quinn turned to press her nose into Rachel's hair, "Me too love, me too."
Rachel picked her head up pressing a soft, loving kiss to Quinn's lips, "Maybe we are going to have to plan some more play dates for Chloe now. Think she's going to have the same good luck as us and find the love of her life on a playground?"
Quinn laughed softly, leaning forward to give Rachel an Eskimo kiss, "Maybe. Just maybe."
It's short and sweet. Leave reviews! Lots and lots! Let me know how you felt.