Santana Lopez has always hated Christmas. Ever since her seemingly in love parents crushed her world on the eve of her fifth Christmas, the Latina has basically been the grinch. The divorce hit her like it would any five year old, and she forever resented the holiday season. Everyone was so fucking happy while she was so damn miserable. The obnoxious lights, the overly merry songs, the cheesy, sentimental gifts- all of it was such bullshit. Well, okay, maybe some of the lights are kind of pretty, and maybe she catches herself singing "Happy Christmas (War is Over)" in the shower and tearing up at the sound of "Christmas Shoes," and maybe even sometimes the gifts are exactly what she wanted, but something has always been missing for her. Something big. And she had no doubt this year would be any different.
She's already starting out the holy month pissed off. She's being forced to spend her first real college break over a thousand miles away from her friends, old and new, in a freezing cold "resort" without internet and cell reception. Well, technically no one's forcing her since she's a legal adult. Whether she'd admit it or not, she'd hate to leave her Dad alone over the holidays. He never remarried like her mother- something Santana never understood. Her father is a sweet, attractive, older man. She's always thought maybe he was still too in love with her Mother to remarry. Although they remained friends, they both claimed they just didn't have the "spark." But maybe he hadn't lost it. Or maybe that was what she had hoped. Either way, he was single and looking forward to the holiday with his only daughter. The nineteen-year-old spent last Christmas with her mother and stepfather, an alternating arrangement her parents created fourteen years ago. Even though she's old enough to make her own decisions now, she still felt it right to honor the agreement for her father. It wouldn't be fair to rid him the pleasure of her presence, even if it means being miserable for the entire month of December, stuck in some freaking log cabin without her friends or any real way to communicate with them. The more she thought about it, the more she felt like her Dad was actually trying to torture her.
"You ready?" Her father asked in his slight accent, pulling their last suitcase off of the conveyor belt.
"Yeah," Santana mumbled sarcastically as she started towards the airport door.
"Oh come on," he laughed, lifting the four bags, three of which belonged to his daughter, onto the luggage cart. "It won't be that bad," he tried to joke. "I'm sure there'll be some pretty girls." Santana rolled her eyes at her father's usual attempt at showing how okay he was with her being gay. She came out almost five years ago and he still felt the need to tell her how okay he is with it almost routinely.
"Thanks for coming with me," he said more seriously. "I know we said you could decide for yourself once you were an adult. And I know this may not be your ideal winter break, but it really means a lot." He tried to throw a strong arm around his slightly smaller daughter as they stepped out into the brisk Colorado air. Her father's words began to mitigate the regret she'd been feeling the entire flight. She gave him a little smile.
"Who knows," he started with a wink, "maybe you'll even have some fun."
"Doubtful," she muttered to herself as she hopped into the cab. She took one last look out the window, saying goodbye to civilization and her winter break.
"Finally," Brittany breathed with a smile as she stepped through the familiar BlueCreek Lodge'slogged doors. Her body warmed from the mix of the lobby's heating and the comfort of her second home.
"Brittany!" Stanley, her favorite doorman, greeted her with a hug.
"Hi," she smiled, wrapping her arms around the elder man whose hair she could tell was thinning, even under his cap.
"Love the hat!" he said, tugging gently on the two dangling tassels hanging from the sides of her new hat. "One of my favorites," he said with a wink. Brittany giggled with satisfaction as she readjusted her light blue winter hat that matched her eyes perfectly. Every year, Brittany reveals a new hat of hers on her arrival day. Stanley has been the judge for the last fifteen years, starting with the day three-year-old Brittany stumbled through the same doors wearing her new Santa hat her Dad bought her for the trip. To this day, Stanley tells her she'll never beat it.
The blonde pranced through the lobby towards the front desk where she immediately reached out her right hand for the guy behind the counter.
"Brit!" He cheered, clearly doing a double take over the maturer blonde. She was 16 the last time he saw her. He slapped his hand against hers and grabbed hold of her fingers a little, the way most guys shook hands. "What's up girl? Gosh, you're looking older every time you come here," he smiled.
"That's because I am older," she laughed.
"I know," he chuckled. "You're just making me feel old. I miss one year here and I feel like an old man."
"You're twenty-six," she said after doing some math in her head. "Not that old."
"I'm twenty-four," he corrected with a slightly defeated look.
"Oh," Brittany blushed, "sorry."
"Charles!" Mr. Pierce interrupted in a strong, clear voice.
"Mr. Pierce," the young man smiled, suddenly sounding more professional. He reached his hand out for a firm handshake. "Welcome back."
"Thank you, sir," Brittany's father smiled.
Brittany, anxious to see the rest of her old friends, pushed past her mother and little brother.
"Brit, don't go far," her Mother warned. The girl shrugged off her Mom's comment and continued through the lobby. By the way her Mother treated her sometimes, you'd think she was a middle schooler, not a freshman in college. She understood, though. Brittany had the tendency to be a little...immature. No- immature wasn't the right word. Light-hearted. Overly optimistic. Seeing the good in all people. Sometimes too much good. Those were better descriptions. Before her mother knew it, Brittany was through the lobby doors and out of sight.
"Gracias- thank you!" Mr. Lopez corrected as the older doorman pulled the heavy door open for the two.
"Welcome," he greeted with a warm smile.
"Thanks," Santana mumbled not so enthusiastically. She was quickly softened by the warm heated air that hit her as she stepped inside. It was hard to act so annoyed when the place was so...beautiful. The ski lodge-esque decorations weren't nearly as tacky as she had expected. Admittedly, she kind of liked the leather sofas. She'd probably even consider putting them in her house one day. All the furniture made out of wood was a little much, but what did she expect? She followed her father to the front desk, taking in the warm colors of the wooden paneled walls. The stone fireplace in the corner was really pretty, too. Some fancy chandeliers, too. Santana leaned up against the counter, turning her back to the man behind the desk as she looked out the giant glass windows. The glass was everywhere. Doors, windows, walls. Through the corner window, Santana could see how big the resort actually was. It seemed to wrap around for miles. Each clear opening gave her a breathtaking view of the snow-covered mountains. For a moment, Santana even wished she liked skiing. Maybe this place wasn't completely bad. At least it still resembled civilization. She quickly shook off her thoughts by pulling out her iPhone. Searching for service. Yup. Just checking. She rolled her eyes as she tucked the phone back into her tight pocket. Another reminder of the next month of boredom that's about to hit her.
"Where's sissy?"An adorable little voice whined from the counter next to her.
"She'll be back soon," the Mom tried to quiet the child gripping her leg as she listened to the employee behind the counter.
"I wanna go with her!" The boy pleaded. He took a slight step out from behind her leg, revealing his bleach blonde hair and striking blue eyes, making him just as adorable as his voice had sounded.
"Lincoln, no!" The mother said in an attempt to be stern. She grabbed the tiny boy's wrist and he settled down.
"422 and 423," the man behind the desk caught Santana's attention.
"Here you are," her father said, handing her a key.
"I have my own room?" She asked, clearly surprised.
"Of course," he laughed. "What, did you think I expected you to put up with me for nearly a month? Our rooms are connected, though. It's all they had. But the doors will stay locked, don't worry."
"Thanks, Papá," she said, examining her new key. Her Dad really was a great guy, always doing his best to make her happy. As much as she didn't understand his draw to come to Colorado for vacation- but then again she never understood the allure to live in Ohio- she knew he'd try his best to make sure she enjoyed herself.
"Mommy," the little boy whined again, "where is Brit Brit?"
"Honey, please," her mother tried to hush him again. When he continued to tug at her arm she leaned down to scoop him into her arms. He was almost too big to be carried, but he still had a little time left. Santana examined the family. Both of the parents were very attractive. Almost too attractive to be parents. They were probably around the same age as her parents, but this father, with his olive skin and light brown, almost blonde, hair could be an adult model. The Mom was glowing, too. With the little boy in their arms, they looked like one of those photos that comes inside of a picture frame you buy. The kind that make you wish your family was that perfect.
The man behind the desk handed Santana a bunch of papers, on the top of which was a map. She didn't need a damn map. She could figure it out this place herself. As she went to put it away, though, she saw a few pictures of the multiple pools and hot tubs. A sauna, too. The facilities were really nice.
"Can we take you on a little tour?" The man asked Mr. Lopez.
"Sure," he said, smiling at his daughter. "Sound good?" He asked her. Santana rolled her eyes with a shrug. She hated formal tours. Regardless, she followed the employee and her father down the hallway.
As soon as Brittany stepped back into the lobby, her little brother shrieked out for her.
"Brit Brit!" He cheered. The blonde smiled and walked over to her family, finally done saying her rounds of hellos in the lobby.
"It's about time," her mother smiled.
"Sorry," Brittany breathed. "I was catching up with some people."
"I know. You almost missed the Evans, though," she told her daughter. "They'll be here any minute."
Brittany's stomach twisted a little in excitement. Or maybe it was nerves. She hadn't seen her on and off again boyfriend since fall break, the five days or so they both got off from college around Thanksgiving time. They had been together since the summer going into Senior year. Brittany fell for him. He fell for her. Things were great. But college came fast and they both knew it was going to be hard. Brittany stayed in Michigan but Sam went all the way down to Florida. They decided the only thing that could work without putting a huge strain on their relationship would be to try an open relationship, meaning they could basically hook up with other people while they were apart, but when they were together, they were together. It's what most seniors who graduated had tried to do, so they figured it was their only realistic option. But Brittany rarely knew of it working. But it's what Sam had suggested and she thought it made a little sense. They were both pretty sexual people and being apart would be hard. The only rule they had: don't tell each other anything about what they did. They knew jealousy would be too much.
Ask Brittany now and she'll tell you how fucking dumb the idea was. Her first semester of college was miserable. She couldn't stop thinking about what Sam was doing. Or who he was doing. Their skype sessions were awkward. Tense, even. Meanwhile, Brittany couldn't bring herself to do anything. She wasn't a cheater. She cared about Sam. She didn't know why she agreed to the whole thing. Fall break came and she was so excited to finally see and be with her boyfriend. The doorbell rang and she sprinted down the steps to see him, expecting her stomach to flutter. But it didn't. And it hasn't since then. The spark that used to make Brittany swoon was gone. Things were just awkward. Sam felt it too. By the end of their night, they knew they had to break up. Brittany never found out if Sam ever actually got with other girls, but she didn't want to know. Their break up hurt, but Brittany knew it was right. Why stay with someone when neither of them felt it anymore? But she missed him. Maybe not in that way, but he still made her laugh harder than any of her friends and he totally got her goofy side. They were friends first. They could be friends again.
But when Sam had called Brittany to tell her that his family booked a vacation to her annual vacation spot via her Mom's advice, Brittany sensed Sam's intention to rekindle. Sure, she wants to feel the spark again, but what if she doesn't? She doesn't want to ruin their friendship even more.
She's tried to not think about it too much, but now he's here and she can't put it off any longer.
Brittany saw Sam's nine year old sister, Kate, skip through the door and she felt herself freeze a little. As soon as she saw the familiar blonde smile, though, her worries momentarily vanished. She sprinted through the lobby and jumped into his arms, excited to see her best friend.
"Brit!" He laughed.
"Sammy," she giggled as he spun her in the air. "So good to finally see you."
"You too," he said, putting her feet back on the ground. "Wow," he said, looking over his ex. "You look great."
"You too," she smiled, but she felt his gaze hold on her longer than hers on him. He looked up, his hazel-green eyes meeting hers. Nothing. No spark. She tried to shake that off, though. She can't expect to reconnect with just one look. It's going to take work and she knew that.
"This place is awesome," he said, sensing her awkwardness.
"Yeah," she smiled proudly. Brittany said a quick hello to Sam's parents, Kathy and Mark, as they walked through the doors. They hugged her warmly and Sam and Brittany followed them further inside.
Santana could barely bring her attention to thank the employee for the tour because of the movie-like reunion she just witnessed. She saw blonde hair sprinting across the lobby towards more blonde hair. She couldn't see the girl's face, but based off her hands she could tell the two had similar skin colors, too. She had assumed they were siblings, maybe separated by college or something, but the way the boy spun her, she didn't think they were related.
"Santana," her father with closed lips, giving her a slight nudge.
"Oh, sorry," she said, turning towards the employee. "Thank you," she said clearer.
"No problem," the man laughed. "Enjoy your stay!" He started saying something more to her father but she tuned them out, turning back to the blondes who she decided were around her age.
The girl reached her hand out to grab the boys as she turned to pull him behind her.
Santana felt her eyebrows arch a little. Almost like a movie scene, the girl ran her fingers through her loose hair that swept over her left shoulder. She looked so effortlessly graceful. More than anything, though, she was hot. Simply put, she was hot. Santana looked up and down her body, her long legs looking great in her black leggings. Her looser white shirt hung low enough to show a defined collarbone and neck. Santana felt herself smiling as she watched the girl sit down on the lobby sofa. The boy and his two little siblings followed behind.
"Santana," Santana heard.
"What?" She said without taking her eyes off the girl. She heard her father chuckle and she assumed that he had been trying to get her attention for some time.
"I'm going to go to the room. Put my bag away. You coming?" He asked.
"Um. I'll be up in a minute."
"Okay," he laughed.
"It's so cold here," Sam said, tightening his sweatshirt around himself.
"It's not that bad," Brittany laughed. "Wow, Florida has changed you."
"Shut up," he nudged her.
"You're not as tan as I expected," Brittany admitted.
"Oh come on," he said, sliding up his sleeve to examine his arm. "That's pretty good."
"It's decent," she joked.
Sam's little brother stood up and began whispering something in his ear.
"No," Sam whispered back a little defeated. "Not anymore. Just friends right now."
Brittany began to feel a little uncomfortable at Sam's hint at heartache. She began to look around the lobby to distract herself from their conversation. She saw Charles helping Mr. and Mrs. Evans checking in and smiled a little. They were always so nice. She saw a few people skiing and snowboarding on the mountain directly behind the resort. She always liked skiing an snowboarding, but she never lasted long. She always wanted to come in for some hot cocoa. Brittany heard some crashing noise behind her and turned quickly to see Isaac, the luggage man, picking up some suitcases that fell off the cart. She giggled when she realized he drove the cart into the wall. When Brittany turned back around, she saw a pretty brunette girl smiling at her. Assuming she also just saw the mini-catastrophe behind her, Brittany smiled back as if the two had some little inside joke. She turned back to Sam who was still talking to his little brother. She looked over at Kate and smiled.
"I love your jacket," she told the girl.
"Thank you," the girl barely managed to get out. She'd always been incredibly shy. When the girl turned away, Brittany's eyes caught back on the brunettes. She was smiling again. Being friendly like always, Brittany smiled back. She probably thought Kate was incredibly cute, which she was. She also noted that the girl must be new here, at least during the winter, because Brittany had never seen her before. Something told Brittany she thought she would have remembered her. She looked back over at Kate and giggled to herself a little as the tiny blonde struggled to unzip her jacket.
"Here," Brittany said, motioning for her to come closer. She did and Brittany helped her unzip it. "There you go." As she helped Kate slide the coat off her shoulders, she felt eyes still on her. Something made it hard for her to raise her own eyes up so she focused on Kate. After the coat was completely off and Kate took a seat next to her, Brittany let her eyes quickly flit up to verify what she assumed. The girl's was still staring at her. Slightly embarrassed, Brittany found herself looking towards the floor.
"You okay?" She heard Sam ask.
"Huh?" she said flustered.
"You're all red," he pointed out. Brittany realized how hot her face felt and from there it only intensified.
"Y-yeah," she shook her head. "I'm okay."
Brittany slyly looked back up and she swore the brunette was smirking at her. Brittany's heart started racing. She wasn't sure why somebody was making her blush this hard. Or why somebody was making her seem shy. Brittany was usually the friendly one.
"So are you gonna show me around?" Sam asked.
"Uh, oh yeah," she smiled, trying to shake her thoughts clear.
Santana watched the blonde stand up from the couch. She couldn't hide her smirk. She'd been smiling at the girl for some time before she caught her attention. It wasn't long before she had her blushing. Hard, too. Her fair skin got flushed almost instantly. As the girl turned around and began to walk away with the boy, Santana felt her eyes fall down the back of the girl.
Damn she thought.
Just as the thought popped into her head, the girl peeked over her shoulder once more. This time, she didn't keep her deer-in-headlights expression. With a shy look, she smiled back. Then she disappeared through the doors.
Santana turned for the elevator. As she stepped inside, she couldn't help smiling. Maybe this trip wouldn't be totally lame.
Hey guys! I'm back :) I tried so soften the amount/degree of Bram that I planned on given the circumstances of Glee right now. Anyway, please please let me know what you think! I should be able to update frequently.
Review and let me know what you think! Or stop by my tumblr (slaves4hemo) and tell me. Want to make sure you want me to continue. Thanks guys! xoxo