15 Swimsuits and Explanations

Puck would never have thought that Rachel could be so happy by his mom accepting a dinner invite. Not that he looked forward to almost no time alone with Rachel tomorrow, but she was so happy he figured he'd live, through a day of blue balls, especially given how awesome she'd been today. When he got home from dropping her off he couldn't keep the smile off his face. She'd asked him to wait five minutes. So he'd loitered in her entryway making small talk with LeRoy until Rachel had come flying back down the stairs with a long gold rope chain her hand. "Until I can get you something suitably badass, I hope this will be all right."

"It's fine Rachel," Noah couldn't help smiling and bending down to kiss her lightly. "I told you, a goofy sweater like Kurt's, even wear it to school. This is totally bad ass. My girl's got a leash on me so she can rein in my stupid if I forget to do it myself."

"It is long enough that I could make a choke collar," She'd commented dryly kissing him lightly. "I'll see you tomorrow?"

"I'll pick ya up at seven," He stroked her cheek. "That okay?"

"Perfect," Rachel had beamed at him, "I'll make you breakfast." She poked his belly, "From the way you eat at lunch I'd swear you don't bother with it." Puck had done his best to not look guilty but she'd figured something was up.

Rache had a more than sneaking suspicion that Puck didn't eat breakfast for reasons other than lack of appetite. The guilty look on his face when she'd commented on his bad breakfast habits had told her quite plainly that she was right. She snuck a look over at him and tilted her head, "Noah, does letting you get to third base and reciprocating before we've even dated make me a slut?" Curiosity compelled her to ask since if anyone at school learned about what they'd done in his bedroom the rumors of her easy morals would be all over McKinley before you could say Jacob Ben Israel.

"Fuck no," Puck looked at her. "There's nothin' slutty 'bout you baby," He added with a tug on her hair.

"But from an outside perspective the argument could be made," Rachel persisted.

"Rache, it ain't like this happened outa the blue," Puck told her quietly. "You're my best friend, and I've always been attracted to you. Just needed to get my priorities straight before I could make any sorta move," His hand slid from her shoulder to the back of her neck, giving her an affectionate squeeze. "This has been comin' on for more'n a year angel."

"We haven't been dating for very long," Rachel reminded him a little reluctantly. She'd absolutely loved how she'd felt with Noah in his bedroom. For the first time she'd felt sexy and powerful, and she'd made her boyfriend lose his mind. "I don't regret anything we did Noah, I just...want to know what people are going to say...will they think I'm a slut?"

"First of all," Puck parked in front of her house and turned to look at her, his expression more stern than she'd ever seen. "What happens between us is our business, nobody is gonna hear about it from me." He shook his head, "You aren't just any girl Rache, you're my girl. My girlfriend so I won't be spreading around just how talented your mouth is at something besides singing. Or that you sound just as awesome riding my tongue as you do onstage. That's private and between us."

"So you have no intention of bragging about how far you got with me today," Rachel knew she was thinking aloud, part of her was still amazed. She loved him beyond belief but she would never have thought Puck would be discreet about their activities. "Noah you'll have to give people some explanation for why you're with me."

"I'm with you because I love you and you're my girl," Puck sounded a little exasperated. "And if all we'd done today was kiss I wouldn't be talkin' 'bout that either." He grinned down at her, "Now if you wanna brag on me a little I won't mind that..."

"It might be counterproductive if you want my reputation intact," Rachel smiled slightly. "But I'll certainly hint at the level of your skill." She took a deep breath, "I'm sorry to be...insecure...I just...I've loved you for a while now...I just had to get past all of the mess that was my life before Nationals."

"Yeah, no drama now," Puck chuckled at her. "Gimme a kiss baby an' then I better get home. Ma'll be waitin' on me."

Rachel smiled and slid closer to him, pressing her body up against his so she could meet his lips with her own. A sweet hot sting seeped into her body just from the touch of his lips to hers, like a spark to tinder, she could feel heat blaze up in her belly as Puck began to return the kiss with interest, nibbling at her mouth. She felt more than heard his groan as her lips parted and allowed him to deepen the kiss, his tongue rubbing against her own erotically until she was gasping into his mouth, all her vaunted breath control useless. "Hmm...Noah," She sighed and reluctantly pulled away. "I'd better get going. We both still have homework."

"Yeah we do," Puck's voice was a low raw growl that seemed to caress her skin. "I'll walk you to your door," He said as he put the truck into park.

"Probably you shouldn't," Rachel told him with another sigh, "We'll end up making out against my front door." She pressed one last kiss to his cheek and unlocked her door. "I'll see you tomorrow morning?"

"You got it," Puck grinned at her and Rachel grabbed her back and hopped out of his truck. Turning once she had the front door open she waved and Puck beeped the horn once in acknowledgement before he drove away.

"Hey Star," LeRoy Berry greeted her from the living room. "How was the first day back?"

Rachel grinned and kissed her daddy on the cheek, "It was pretty good." She put her bag near the stairs and headed into the kitchen. "Daddy I do need to talk to you though," She called. "Before Dad gets home. I don't want to freak him out."

"All right," LeRoy entered the kitchen, his dark eyes narrowed as he watched her get out the makings for salad and lemon pepper chicken and tofu. "What about?"

"I want to go to the doctor and get a prescription for birth control," Rachel said quickly. "I..." She looked up at her daddy and sighed. "I didn't have any trouble telling Finn no. I wasn't even tempted to do anything more than kiss with him. But...today..."

"Rachel please tell me you did not have unprotected sex," LeRoy Berry asked in an appalled tone. "You're smarter than that."

"I didn't," She shook her head, "But I was extremely tempted even though Noah didn't press me at all." Rachel shrugged, "I just don't want to be unprepared."

"We'll discuss it more later," Her daddy said with a 'I'm going to seriously consider this' tone to his voice and Rachel knew she wouldn't get anymore out of him until he'd thought about her request.

"All right," She nodded her agreement, "I just wanted to put it out there."

"So noted," LeRoy half smiled. "So how did Noah do his first day back?"

Rachel couldn't help smiling at the prospect of talking about her boyfriend and happily filled the next half hour talking about the day and what they'd learned about Finn. "So he most likely won't be back at school before it ends, unless the school board agrees to it," She said quietly. "I know that Noah doesn't want Finn in jail really, but part of me does."

"It's a scary thing to be afraid someone you love is going to die," LeRoy said soberly. "If it's any consolation I doubt the school will allow Finn much contact with the two of you. Court dates are notoriously slow in being set so he might be back in school once the new year begins but he'll be kept under house arrest for the summer most likely. His release was conditional upon his staying away from you and Noah."

"Noah feels bad for Mrs. Hummel," Rachel told her father softly. "I do too in a way, but at the same time...I want Finn to get what he deserves."

"He will Star," LeRoy reassured her. "In the meantime, just concentrate on being with your boyfriend. One that actually treats you in a way that shows you matter to him."

Rachel grinned and knew her expression was more than a touch wicked, a Puck-like smirk pulling at her lips as she thought of how Noah had shown her how much he cared about her that afternoon. Controlling her lascivious expression with an effort she showed her daddy the ring Puck had given her and continued to cook dinner.

He'd been absolutely right. Rachel had greeted him at the door with a huge thermos of hot tea and another of coffee. She'd brought what looked like a crate of breakfast burritos that she'd made from real eggs just for him. She was eating an apple and some sort of soy yogurt and drinking juice. "All right Noah, why don't you eat breakfast?"

"Rachel, maybe you hadn't noticed but…my mom she has to pay a mortgage and insurance and car notes and everything we need is sometimes more than what she makes," Puck said uncomfortably. "It ain't something I talk about. But I figured out my in seventh grade that my mom was eatin' expired canned fruit cocktail and givin' me an' Bekah kosher chicken for dinner. It was all right when we were at school, lunches are free. So I just figured I'd stop eatin' breakfast and load up on stuff at lunch I could keep in my locker. I'd put apples and bread and fruit in there and eat it in the morning or on the way home. I'd keep some for Bekah so she'd have a snack." He looked up from the road to Rachel's stricken face and reached over to pat her knee. "It's gotten better since I could work. I go out and buy more groceries, but I don't want to explain to my mom why I'm suddenly eating breakfast at home again."

"I see," Rachel nodded, "I even understand," She sighed. "It isn't easy to ask for help is it?"

"No, not when people usually kick you when you're down," Puck agreed soberly.

"Will you let me help you Noah?" Rachel asked softly, "I won't tell your mom, I can just make you breakfast along with my dads every day. They won't mind."

"It'll make you feel better?" Puck asked as he pulled into the school parking lot.

"I'd like to…take care of you if you'd let me Noah," Rachel looked at him hopefully, and he could tell she was just waiting for him to blow her off. "It's such a little thing for me to do really. I can't buy you more clothes or help you with bills, but I can feed you and Bekah snacks and breakfast."

"I make sure Bekah eats," Puck corrected her, "That's part a why I stopped. It makes the groceries last longer."

"What do you do in the summer?" Rachel asked as they walked across the empty parking lot.

"I work full time," Puck shrugged, "Between cleanin' pools and the garage I usually can keep us in groceries and have some left over for clothes." He smiled slightly, "It helps if people think I don't give a damn about wearing the same shirt every coupla days."

"If I…" She blushed and ducked her head, mumbling something and Puck was forced to tip her chin up with his finger before he could understand her. "Most people in school think I'm a controlling...bitch and a diva." She began, "So if I started to behave in a way they expect...I'd buy you things, I'd decorate your locker and I'd schedule all your time." Puck watched as Rachel shook her head and sighed, "I mean, I could...act like I'm the controlling bitch they all think I am and in a pretense of making you over buy you a couple of shirts and a pair of jeans." She offered with a half smile, "Or I could just buy you a belated birthday gift and you could say that you finally caved and got some new stuff, if you needed anything."

"No, Rachel, that's okay," Puck took a deep breath knowing she meant well and how much she really wanted to be able to do things for him. Giving up one of her necklaces so he'd be able to wear her ring was nothing to her because it meant he'd wear something she'd given him. "I'm good for now. In the fall if you still wanna, I wouldn't say no to some help buying a decent suit so I can take you to a dance or two next year."

"I'd like that," Rachel nodded giving him a smile. "I just...you've lent me your letterman's jacket and that's what you wear in the winter. And you gave me your class ring and you could have bought a lot of clothes or food with what you paid for that. And all I've done is give you a blowjob and a few pictures and stupid necklace that's long enough to be a leash." She shook her head, "It doesn't seem like I'm doing all that much."

"There is somethin' you could do for me gorgeous," Puck took a deep breath, "A coupla somethin's actually." He traced the back of his finger over her cheekbone, "Fuck me you're just...beautiful." He kissed her, "I've got to go to court, dunno when yet, since Finn hit me. Could you come with? Help me stay calm?"

"Of course I will," Rachel nodded eagerly, "I'd be happy to." She rose on her tiptoes and kissed him gently, "What was the other something?"

"Teach me how to tie a tie," Puck admitted. "I got one but my mom's gonna be working and damned if I'm gonna ask Kurt or Blaine or Mr. Schue."

"I can do that too," Rachel grinned happily up at him, "Are you going to work out now? I was going to use the free weights they keep around here. My kung fu teacher says I need more strength in my punches."

"Shit you know kung fu?" Puck grinned, "When did you start with that?"

"After we broke up sophomore year and I went out with Jesse and both my heart and eggs got broken in public," Rachel explained as they walked through the halls to their lockers. "Daddy was incensed and insisted that I should know how to defend myself against attackers beyond pepper spray." Puck grinned, LeRoy was pretty badass for a gay lawyer. Hiram was quieter but still very stubborn, Rachel got her never die attitude from him. Oddly enough he'd never heard much about what Hiram did for a living.

"Do you like it?" He asked absently as he watched her put her things into her locker. She was very precise, everything was neat and had a place unlike his locker which after Rachel had gotten through with him was somewhat more organized but still nothing to hers.

"It's more challenging than ballet, and it's nice to meet people who don't know me from school," She said absently. "I know I'm a diva, I've been trying to be a nicer one, you know, more Aretha Franklin than Diana Ross, but... well, I'm not always very...successful."

Puck couldn't stand it, he hated when she talked down about herself, "Rache, stop that." He tugged her closer and bent down to kiss her, letting his lips tell her just how much he valued her, "I can't stand when you talk about yourself like that, like you aren't anything if you can't sing. Even if you couldn't, you'd still be a dancer and an actor and a straight A student. But you can sing, and even when you were making me crazy for totally different reasons than you do now, I couldn't say one bad thing about your voice." He put his hand on her throat gently, "What you've got in here is amazing." He moved his hand down to her sternum, "What's in here is what'll make you a star."

"Noah Puckerman," Rachel lifted his hand up to her lips and kissed his knuckles, "I adore you." She sighed, "But if we're going to get anything done this morning we'd better get going."

"Yeah, I'll see you in the weight room," Puck grinned. "I'll set you up with some free weights before I start my reps."

Puck shook his head as he entered the choir room, Rachel had been hilarious in the gym, doing what he'd told her with the weights and then watching him as he worked out like he was something awesome. That was a huge ego stroke and combined with the amount of kissing and touching she'd allowed before she had to hit the showers had set up his good mood for the day. He'd actually been impressed by how well she handled herself. She hadn't been in a fight lately but he got the feeling that the hair pulling diva of sophomore year was a thing of the past. His Diva would kick serious ass if someone messed with her physically.

Rachel had gotten pulled away by Kurt right before they'd gotten to the choir room, so Puck just grabbed a chair and started messing with his guitar, an old song his mom used to sing coming into his head, noodling around as Rachel called it. "The legend lives on from the Chippewa on down of the big lake they call 'Gitche Gumee.' The lake, it is said, never gives up her dead when the skies of November turn gloomy."

Rachel's voice joined his as she entered the room, "With a load of iron ore twenty-six thousand tons more than the Edmund Fitzgerald weighed empty, that good ship and true was a bone to be chewed when the gales of November came early."

Puck played a few chords and glanced at Rachel, "Didn't know you knew this one." He smiled slightly.

"It's a legend, of course I know it," She smiled back at him. "The ship was the pride of the American side, comin' back from some mill in Wisconsin," She sang the next lines sadly.

Slowly, not rushing the tempo they continued as the rest of the choir trooped in slowly, Mr. Schue joining them about halfway through the song. Puck heard Rachel's voice almost break as she sang the line about the waves turning minutes to hours and looked at her in concern. "Sorry," She shook her head and buried her face in his shoulder crying.

"Hey, hey what's wrong?" Puck rubbed her back, "I know it ain't your normal range but it sounds good."

"That's not it Noah, though I thank you for your emotional support of my abilities as always," She mumbled and he tugged her hair to make her look at him. Kurt had taken a seat next to him and was looking at Rachel in concern. "No, I just...I realized I knew exactly how that felt, when minutes turn to hours. And it just...all over again." She shook her head.

"Geez drama much Rache?" Santana drawled, her voice more teasing than nasty, and Puck knew she didn't see it as a slam, Santana didn't like to do feelings, like him she tried to distance herself.

"Shut it Lopez," He tossed the command over his shoulder half-heartedly, "Kurt an' me know just what she means."

"What does she mean?" Mike asked quietly, Artie was beside him and said nothing, from the look on his face he knew exactly what the line meant. Schuester looked as if he was ready to wring someone's neck and Puck found himself wondering exactly what made this guy so great again.

"When you're waiting and you haven't heard anything and time just drags by and the worse you worry the slower it gets," Kurt said with some finality. "If Rachel hadn't called the paramedics when she did, Puck could have died. It was a forty-minute drive to the hospital and that was at top speed. If they'd had to do the drive in the winter? In the rain? Puck might have died in the ambulance with Rachel and his mom both helpless to do anything about it." Kurt looked at Santana, "I know how it feels because when my dad had a heart attack I felt the same way waiting for him to wake up." He shook his head.

"Hell I remember when my dad left," Puck offered slowly talking to give Rachel time to calm down and breathe and also to distract Schuester. "He didn't wait until my mom got home from work, or take off when we were all asleep at home or anything like that. Bekah was a baby, geez I was a kid, and he just picked up a suitcase and walked out the door, told me I was the man of the house now. That was at three twenty eight in the afternoon. My mom didn't get home until midnight. I was...well I nearly lost my shit."

"It's good that you can all have sympathy for each other," Schuester nodded. "But I have assignments for all of you."

Puck nodded and wrapped his arm around Rachel a bit more snugly. "We don't got anymore competitions Schue, so what are we doin' assignments for?" He listened as Schuester began to explain the importance of continuing their practices and how it was never too early to prepare for next year.

Rachel grinned as she slipped on her flip flops and headed out to her pool. She was going to blow Puck's mind with her new bikini and best of all her dads were at work so they wouldn't have to see her boyfriend groping her.

Puck had kindly offered to clean her dads pool with her on Saturdays since that was a day most of his regular clients used their yards and didn't want a cleaning guy around. He'd winked at Rachel once LeRoy and Hiram left the room and told her that he wasn't making as much money since he was off the market for anything but cleaning pools. But he was still working at Bert Hummel's garage so it more than made up for the lack of cougar money.

The shop wasn't open Saturday afternoons so Puck spent some time at home finishing up chores from the week and then came over to spend his time off with her. By July the water had finally heated up enough that they could use the pool for more than an impromptu cold shower and she was looking forward to showing off her bikini to her boyfriend.

Puck knocked on the back gate and entered at the sound of Rachel's voice calling for him to come in. Saturday afternoons were his favorite day of the week. A little work on Rachel's pool and afterwards he always got to spend quality time with his girl. Not just a couple hours a few nights a week, but a whole afternoon and evening after Synagogue. And at her own behest, he grinned as he thought the word, girl was such a bad influence on his badassness, it was naked quality time. She might not be ready for sex yet but in the couple of months after Nationals they'd done almost everything except sex.

He would never have thought he'd be so damn happy not fucking a chick but... He shrugged to himself as he brought in his pool cleaning equipment. It was Rachel. And getting his hands and mouth on Rachel was better than fucking some random cougar. Plus his girl was determined that he be satisfied so she was always wanting to practice her no gag reflex on him. "Hey gorgeous," He was greeted with the sight of Rachel in a short little shirt type thing, bare legs and flip flops. "Damn," Puck shook his head over her legs, "Seriously heart stoppin' baby."

"Wait'll you see the rest of it," Rachel grinned at him as she moved forward to help with the equipment. It wasn't much but the lengthy skimmers and hoses were awkward to carry. "I'll show you after we get the pool cleaned." She couldn't help letting her eyes linger appreciatively on his bare chest. Summer was good to Puck, he was out in the sun so much that he tanned more, he worked hard and still went to the school to use the weight room, keeping in shape for football and he was just... mouthwatering. He brought clothes for Synagogue in his duffle bag but the rest of the time, like today, he lived in cargo shorts and battered sneakers.

"Shit, that won't take long, revved up as you get me angel," Puck grinned at her. "You know I love you in red." It was true, whether it was screaming fire engine red, dark like wine or hot lipstick red Rachel looked good in it. And her little cover up was a bright fiery color, like the Hot Wheels trans am he'd had as a kid.

Rachel sighed happily as they began working together. Puck had made it a rule that they wouldn't kiss on Saturdays until they'd gotten the work done. When she'd argued, until she was blue in the face thank you very much, he'd countered with a simple statement of fact. Once he started to kiss her on Saturday he had no intention of stopping until it was time for them to go to the Synagogue. If he kissed her before they cleaned the pool they'd never get it done. But the faster they cleaned the pool the sooner she would get her kiss. And she was seriously addicted to kissing him. Nothing could have prepared her for how it felt to have his lips on hers, to be wrapped in his arms, or feel his chest rising and falling, pressed to her body.

The other odd thing was how almost all of their arguments ended with one or the other of them making a simple statement that took all the wind out of the others sales. She could go on and on about something, making multiple points and then Puck would calmly point out a single fact and derail the entire thing. And the argument was over. To be fair she did the same thing to him. He'd once gone on for nearly an hour about the possibility of a zombie apocalypse and Rachel had listened until she'd finally had enough. Pointing out that they lived in Lima Ohio and zombies always started in big cities had neatly sideswiped his whole preparedness lecture. Agreeing that when they were in New York they'd come up with a plan had been enough to relax him.

It was really sweet, Rachel thought as she used the skimmer to scoop up leaves and bugs while Puck got the heavier equipment and hose meant to clean the bottom and sides of the pool going. Half of Puck's obsessions with the world ending or fires or any sort of emergency were fueled by the idea that if he could prepare for it in some little way that he and his people would survive. She loved Esther to death but the woman had seriously scared her boy with all the Holocaust movies. Puck was determined that he, his family and Rachel and Rachel's family were going to live through whatever disaster appeared on the horizon.

"Baby you okay?" Puck's voice broke into her thoughts, he was looking at her with a tilted head, a bemused frown on his lips. "You ain't talkin' like you normally do."

"I'm just thinkin'," Rachel smiled happily. "Don't worry, Rachel babble is scheduled for later on today."

Puck grinned and shook his head, his girl had a seriously whacked out sense of humor. She didn't go for pranks like he did sometimes, but she would happily point out the ridiculous things she saw around her and created the most convincingly funny scenarios for shit. She'd told him it was part of her training to be an actress, people watching, so she took it very seriously but sometimes people were so stupid she couldn't help but think of why they were acting that way. Inevitably her inner Monty Python would emerge. That was something he could totally get behind, Rachel had shown him her Daddy's old movies and that shit was funny as hell. "Okay baby, long's you ain't mad at me or nothin'," He frowned slightly as he watched her hands manipulating the skimmer. She wasn't wearing his ring.

Puck continued to work and kept silent, his mind racing. Rachel hadn't said she wasn't mad at him. Maybe he'd pissed her off? But he hadn't done anything. Usually she was pretty adamant when she was annoyed with him, but she hadn't ever taken off his ring, she'd just told him why she was pissed. So this not wearing his ring and not talking shit was totally unkosher. What the fuck was goin' on? He could feel himself getting wound tighter and tighter, working himself up into a good mad and even as he realized he was doing it he couldn't seem to stop himself. He worked in silence and so did she and thanks to the energy being pissed off gave him they were done in record time.

Rachel tilted her head curiously, Puck was frowning, his handsome face like a stormcloud as he wound the hoses up and tied them with the cord setting them all by the gate. He looked furious, but not the same anger she'd seen at the tree lot or when he'd confronted her about singing for Finn before Regionals. She'd never seen him like this, "Noah?" She asked as he came to take the skimmer, "What's wrong?"

"You tell me," Puck ground the words out from between clenched teeth. He took the skimmer and went to place it with the rest of his equipment before returning to stand in front of her with his arms folded.

"Nothing," Rachel shook her head and began to undo the ties on her cover up, shrugging out of the thin cloth and exposing her matching bright red bikini. His eyes were dark and angry, even as his jaw clenched, his pulse jumped in his throat at the sight of her. "I don't understand why you're angry all of the sudden," She looked up at him and felt very small and worried, not that Noah would hurt her, but that she'd upset him and didn't even know how or why. "Noah what did I do? I thought you'd like the bikini."

"Like the..." Puck took a deep breath, she really had no idea of what had set him off. He had to work on controlling his stupid shit around her. But at the same time...how could she wear something like that for him and take off his ring? "You look hot. Amazing. Gorgeous. Completely and totally fuckable and I wanna so bad it's painful. But the bikini isn't the point." He took her left hand and held it up, "You wear something that hot for me, knowin' I'll totally lose my shit, but you can't be bothered to wear my ring? Thought you were pissed at me. Started to think maybe you were dumpin' me but you wouldn't do it like this, couldn't figure out what the fuck was goin' on an' all I knew Rache was that you weren't wearin' my promise to you." He heaved in another breath staring down at her beautiful, confused face, "Got pretty good and pissed tryin' to figure out what was goin' on. An' you weren't talkin' like you normally do. No Rachel babble, no ring...you know I'm fuckin' stupid about this shit."

"Are you done?" Rachel's voice was quiet and painfully controlled and Puck took a deep breath and nodded. "All right. I accept that you were confused by my unnatural silence. And I understand that you see your ring on my hand as a reassurance that all is right in our relationship. I even understand why you became angry when I wasn't wearing it because you were confused and you don't like being confused so you get angry." She put her hands on her hips which did incredible things to her waist and breasts and had half of his blood rushing south. "But what I don't understand Noah, is when you saw I wasn't wearing the ring why you didn't just ask me about it?"

"'Cause what if I didn't wanna hear the answer," Puck told her painfully. "What if I was wrong and you were dumping me, again," He added darkly. Sophomore year was still a raw spot with him.

"So your answer is to get angry," Rachel rolled her eyes and Puck immediately felt five times the stupid that he had when the whole thing had begun. "Noah, I love you. I love wearing your ring. If I ever take it off it is for a good reason. And if you ever break up with me you're not getting it back. If I break up with you, which is inconceivable by the way, you'll have to ask for it back because I won't give it to you unless you do." She shook her head at him, "Today I'm not wearing your ring because we were going to go swimming and I didn't want the yarn to get wet. Tomorrow Daddy is taking me to the jewelers so I can get a normal ring-sizer and I won't have to use the yarn. Then I can wear it on my finger or around my neck on a chain. I didn't take it off because I was mad at you Noah."

"Shit," Puck muttered feeling like ten kinds of idiot. "Sorry?" He added hopefully.

"Oh Noah," Rachel sighed and wrapped her arms around his neck. "What am I going to do with you baby? You're worse than I am about being dumped. And I'm pretty bad." She pressed a kiss to his tanned chest and felt his breath catch at the feel of her lips. "I promise, when I'm mad at you the last thing I'll ever do is take off your ring. When I'm mad at you you'll know it. I'm not exactly subtle when I've got a full head of steam going am I?" She reminded him wryly.

"You can be sneaky though Rache," Puck told her seriously wrapping her up in his arms and moving over to the deck chair to sit with her. "An' you know how stupid I am about feelings and shit. Hell I talk about emotional crap with you more'n anybody else, like ever, and I still feel like a moron."

"Knowing is half the battle," Rachel teased him and Puck groaned. It was just like his girl to pull the tagline from PSA's at the end of old cartoons so she could mess with him.

"Yeah, yeah," Puck sighed. "I'm sorry angel. I just... really still can't believe you're with me sometimes. Feel like I'mma wake up an' go to school an' you'll be walkin' around hangin' on Finn's arm with that 'I adore him, he's my leading man,' look on your face." He shook his head, "Used ta make me feel sick, like he was turnin' you into some kinda Stepford wife or somethin'."

"That would be a nightmare of epic proportions," Rachel agreed somberly. "I know what'll make you feel better." She shifted slightly and felt his hands on her waist.

"Yeah?" Puck kissed her forehead and her cheeks and her nose before he got to her lips, ""What's that angel?"

"It might be rewarding bad behavior, but in the end you did ask what was wrong, so I'm going to think of this as positive reinforcement," Rachel told him with a gentle kiss. "But I would very much like for you to take me up to my bedroom, lock the door and strip me naked Noah Abram Puckerman."

"You sure?" Puck felt his dick go instantly hard as fuckin' concrete, why the hell was he asking if she was sure? Oh yeah, because this was Rachel and fuck if he was going to hurt her. "We could go to a movie or somethin'," He suggested half-heartedly.

"Honestly Noah," Rachel giggled at him, "I'm finally going to show you my famous vibrator and get you to use it on me and you want to go to a movie?"

"Did I say that?" Puck was on his feet in an instant. "Musta been some other moron in love with you, I wouldn't ever suggest somethin' that stupid Rache, uh uh." Her giggles drifted over the shimmering water of the pool as he carried her into the house.


Author's Note: So this is a bit shorter than the last one. We'll have more lemons in the next chapter but I did want to show that these two do still have communication issues at times. I hope all of you enjoyed it. I'd love to hear what you think, if you have ideas about what should happen their senior year. If I can swing it this will go all the way to graduation, AU obviously because I really don't see Rachel ever getting back with Finn at this point.