AN: Thanks to the recaps I've received for the previous episode I've gotten tons of ideas. The following is pretty much my headcanons for what's happened to Quinn since the beginning of the season and then goes into a little to what happens past the end of the episode. It's been a while since I tried something angsty, so I'm kind of unsure about it. Opinions would be nice.
Warnings: This does contain spoilers although I'm not completely sure how accurate those spoilers are.
It's a week into college when Quinn receives an email from Rachel. Her roommate is asleep so she has to stop herself from jumping out her bed and waking her up. She takes a few deep, calming breathes to settle herself down and clicks the email open only to flatten instantly when she read about some Brody guy.
Apparently he's a lot like her, and there's even a picture of the two of them; he looks like a fucking model. Quinn hates him already. For once in her life, she felt like she could truly get something, or more accurately someone, she wanted. And yet again a boy swoops out of nowhere and snatches her dreams, her star, away from her.
She should have expected this, having already lost out to Finn, Puck, Jesse, and even Blaine. And now by this Brody Weston, and his cheesy smile and chiseled bod; of course Rachel would pick him over her former bully who still hasn't been able to get her abs back. Quinn feigns excitement and wishes Rachel the best.
It's all she can do; all that she's willing to let herself do. Quinn's already tried coming in between Rachel and every boy she's ever had interest in (primarily Finn) and that's never worked out for her. Of course the one time she did try to be supportive resulted in her getting crushed by a truck, but she'll risk it so long as she doesn't hurt Rachel.
A month or so later, Rachel's weekly emails turn into bi-weekly emails and Quinn realizes how much she misses her. For the past four years she's had Rachel in some capacity. Whether they were friends or enemies, she had Rachel's attention.
There's a part of her that wishes that she could go back to freshman year; the year when no one noticed Rachel. Even if she couldn't take back her actions and make everything better, going back to the year they first met would mean so much to Quinn, just to have Rachel's full and undivided attention.
Her Metro North Pass sits unused in her special notebook. She knows it's probably going to stay that way. It was supposed to get easier as time went on, but only the opposite is true. And she can't, repeat, she can't go to New York and see Rachel with this Brody guy. She can't chance it, can't risk getting to know him and possibly even liking the guy that's trying to take her girl.
It's a week later that she hears about Finn coming back. Apparently he shot himself in the ass or something while at boot camp, and now he's trying to rekindle his relationship with Rachel. Again. Quinn wants to laugh. Not just because Finn shot himself, but because it's funny, in a sad way, that he keeps dumping Rachel just to chase after her again.
But she reminds herself that she's not going to interfere, that she's going to be the better person. She tells Rachel that she should listen to her heart, really listen, and that she should only take Finn back if that's what she really wants and if he's really serious this time. It's a day or two before she gets a reply, and she's glad to learn that she broke it off, that Rachel broke it off.
She asks if Quinn can come over for the weekend. Quinn promises that she will, but something comes up or at least that's what she tells Rachel. They reschedule for the following weekend, but it's Rachel that comes over instead of Quinn, after the blonde makes an excuse with being swamped with school work. Rachel doesn't say anything about how Quinn doesn't even touch her books throughout the entire weekend. She tells her that she'll visit when she gets a chance, but another month passes by without them seeing each other.
During that time Quinn catches up with Santana. They call each other occasionally. Quinn notices how the topic of Brittany is never brought up, but like how Rachel didn't prod, Quinn decides to not do so either. Their calls are more frequent than her and Rachel's emails and before long Quinn runs out of things to say.
It's time like this that Quinn hates that she never told anyone about how she feels about Rachel. If she had, then she'd be able to talk to Santana about this. But at the same time she can't be sure if she can fully trust Santana; one day they're the best of friends and the next they're the worst of enemies.
So she does what she does best… she lies. She lies about this and that. Quinn fully expects Santana to call her out on her shit, but she doesn't so keeps going on.
Her life at Yale could be far more exciting, but she's a bit too busy moping and waiting for that email. They've become less detailed and Rachel doesn't even mention Brody in them anymore. Quinn knows that something's wrong, but she's too much of a coward to ask about it. Or maybe it's because she's actually glad that they're not together.
It's selfish and she hates herself for it, and she wonders if it's for the best that they're drifting apart. She tells herself that she's trying to make Rachel happy, but her actions speak otherwise. So yes, perhaps it's for the best and then maybe, just maybe Quinn can let go of this fairy tale ending that she's always dreamed of.
And that's what leads her to Lima come Thanksgiving. She's in a pretty bad place, but hopes that seeing her old friends will help keep her mind off Rachel. There she meets the latest additions to the New Directions, which include another Puckerman, former Vocal Adrenaline member Wade Adams, a football player Ryder Lynn, a Cheerio Kitty Wilde, and Marley Rose.
With just one look she sees it, that same determination, that same desire. Quinn knows nothing about this girl, and yet she feels like she knows everything. The red string of fate is mocking her, she's sure of it. Or the green ribbon; the one she brings with her everywhere. She's a bit disappointed and a bit glad that Finn has her mentor Kitty and not Marley.
She learns that Kitty idolizes her, even has a picture of her in her locker. Quinn likens it to Rachel's love of Barbra Streisand. She likes it. Maybe a little too much. She believes the shorter blonde almost instantly when she tells her that Jake Puckerman is pressuring Marley into sex. Quinn tells Jake to back off, in not so few words. She doesn't even think about hearing his side of things. She won't fail Marley like she did Rachel. She won't.
Santana confronts her some time afterwards, saying that Kitty is sabotaging Marley. Again she doesn't listen, can't listen. Doing so will also mean admitting that the only legacy she left behind is one of tormenting people, hurting them just for the fun of it. Quinn never liked hurting people, just the opposite. She only teased Rachel to fight her feelings, to hide her feelings, and to get her attention. She tells herself that Santana's just jealous; jealous that people remember her and of her exaggerated college life at Yale. She goads her on. Santana mentions Beth. There are some slaps before Brittany shows up. They act like nothing happened. Quinn leaves.
It's Sectionals when she sees her pass out. It takes the rest of the crowd a few more seconds to notice what's happened. They stop applauding when they see one of the boys carry her out. Needless to say, they don't finish their performance. It means disqualification, but Quinn couldn't care less about that. As much as she said that they need Marley at her best for them to win, all she really cares about is her well-being.
And she fucked up. She glances over to Santana and receives a sympathetic look rather than the 'I told you so' that she would have expected. There's no need for words. She gets up and walks past her best friend, making her way to the nurse's office. They're all waiting outside.
Ryder is sitting on the ground, back against the wall with his face buried in his hands. Jake is pounding his fist against a locker, blaming himself for not noticing that something was wrong with her. Kitty looks pale, horror stricken at the turn of events. Quinn takes a hold of her wrist and drags her into the nearest restroom.
"What the hell did you do to her?" she yells as she pushes the terrified blonde against the door.
"Don't lie to me. In case you've forgotten I was Head Cheerio towards the end of my freshman," she reminds. "If anyone knows what it looks like when someone passes out from malnutrition and lack of sleep it'd be me. Now, what did you do to her?" she asks again, emphasizing each word.
"I- I gave her diet pills and laxatives and stuff. I taught her to throw up," she admits, her voice broken and trembling. Quinn scoffs at her own arrogance. "I didn't want… I didn't mean… I just…" she trails off. Tears slowly start to travel down her face, ruining her makeup. Quinn relinquishes her grip and walks over to the sink, placing her hands on opposite ends of the cold porcelain to help keep her upright. Kitty soon follows.
"No one ever does," Quinn tells her through her reflection in the mirror. "But that doesn't mean you aren't going to hurt people." Kitty nods, wiping her tears away. "Is there anything else?"
"I may have altered her costume for Grease; made it smaller."
Quinn nods. "You can go," she dismisses her. Kitty does as told. She gets as far as pushing the door halfway open before Quinn calls to her, "And take that picture of me out of your locker, unless you're willing take this as a lesson." Her order meets silence and then the door swings closed. She's alone. Quinn stares at herself in the mirror for an uncertain amount of time.
When she leaves the safety of the restroom she finds out that Marley's up and that Jake's with her. It's a while before he's out. He tells everyone that she's okay, but it's clear he doesn't know why she fainted. He can only conclude that its stress and Quinn feels bad that she can't tell him, but it's not her place to say. The rest of the group goes inside, but Quinn waits and approaches Jake.
"I'm sorry," she says. He doesn't answer, doesn't even look at her. She doesn't blame him. "I shouldn't have judged you. You obviously care a lot about her. She's going to be okay." He nods, the first indication that he's actually listening to her. Quinn takes it as a good sign. "And just know that none of this is your fault." He nods again, and then leaves.
Quinn finds a nearby vending machine and gets a granola bar. Again she waits, this time for the group to leave. They file out slowly, but they don't take as much time as Jake. Ryder is the last one to leave her side. When he leaves, she offers his a hug, clearly he needs it. She doesn't know what to expect past those doors, but she musters up her courage and walks through. The first thing she sees is Marley's tear stained face. Quinn keeps her own expression firm and strong. "You okay?"
"I failed them," Marley chokes out. "They were depending on me, and I failed them," she sobs.
Quinn is on her in an instant, wrapping her in a tight hug. Marley cries on Quinn's shoulder, the fabric of her blouse soaking up the brunette's tears. Quinn rubs soothing circles on her back all the while whispering into her ear, "It's not your fault, it's not your fault." In time her sobs die down to whimpers and then those whimpers down die down as well. When she stops, Quinn pulls back and hands her the granola bar, "Here, you should eat."
Marley shakes her head. "No, I'm not hungry," she says.
"Yes you are," Quinn replies pointedly. "I used to be a Cheerio, Marley. We had to endure one hundred calorie diets and optional mandatory midnight practices, and by the looks of things, I'd say that what you're doing to yourself is worse. And don't try to lie, I talked to Kitty. So take it and eat." Marley continues to refuse. "You need your strength Marley, and you're not getting fat. Kitty altered your costume."
"What? Why would she… we're friends." Poor naïve girl.
"I don't know." She regrets not asking. "But it's the truth, and I'm sorry." Marley doesn't move, doesn't do or say anything. And if her eyes weren't open and if she wasn't sitting up Quinn would worry that she had fainted again. She opens up the granola bar and holds it further out. "Here, Eat." Her words snap Marley back into reality. With trembling hands she reaches out for the granola bar and brings it to her mouth. She eats it slowly; savoring each bite like it might be her last.
"Thank you," she squeaks out. "Please don't tell anyone, especially my mom, Jake or Ryder."
"Not a word; you should tell them yourself, but not until you're ready." Quinn gets up from the bed and finds a scrap of paper and a pen. She jots something down, sits back in her place and hands the paper to Marley. "And until you are ready, here's my number. If you ever need anything just call me."
"Okay, thank you." Quinn gets up again, this time intent on leaving and letting Marley have her rest. She's stopped not but five steps from the bed. "Why are you being so nice to me? You barely know me."
"Because Glee Club is a family," an honest answer, albeit not the real one. "A dysfunctional family that shouldn't work out, shouldn't at all, buts does work anyway." Marley sees it as a sufficient answer, so Quinn could leave now like she wanted, but she doesn't. "And because you remind me of someone. Someone I care very deeply for. Someone I love."
"Well, whoever they are, they're very lucky to have you."
"I can only hope that you're right, Marley."
AN: This will, at the very least, be a two-shot. So don't worry about that. What happens in part two, though, is up for debate.
And just a friendly reminder, if you haven't purchased "Come See About Me" do so now. SUPPORT DIANNA!