AN: Final chapter for this story! Thank you to everyone's read this. I've enjoyed writing it. :) I most definitely plan to write more in this world. I've built in some scenes I really want to see played out before and after the wedding.
"My Dad is going to kill Finn when he sees the truck," muttered Kurt as Rachel sat down on his bed at the Hummel home. "Water balloons hanging from the roof of the cab, really?"
"I had never been more afraid of getting into a vehicle in my life," laughed Rachel as she sat down on the edge of the bed to watch Kurt undress. "I'm just glad that I had changed out of my wedding dress and heels. The shaving cream on everything was a bit much."
"I'm surprised they actually did anything at all," commented Kurt as he hung up the jacket. "It's not like we were going anywhere. And thank god I had my tan coat and gloves or I would have made Finn drive us home. Tomorrow morning I'm going to lob every one of those water balloons at Puck, Sam, Finn, Mike... I'll make an exception for Joe, because I don't want karma to come back and bite me."
"What about Blaine?" teased Rachel.
"He gets the first one," said Kurt as he knelt by his suitcase. "Actually, I think Santana gets the first one for that song."
Rachel laughed. "Doing her own spin for you on I Kissed a Girl was pretty priceless. I do hope that was captured on video."
"I hope it goes down in flames," muttered Kurt.
"She was just having fun," said Rachel with a soft smile. "She did keep our secrets."
"True," admitted Kurt. He sat down beside Rachel. She ran his fingers through his hair as he hummed a random tune while checking his phone messages. They were finally in the one place they really wanted to be: alone in each other's company. It was warm and inviting in Kurt's room, and Rachel was just happy that the day was over with. She loved her friends and what they had done, but this was her vacation and wedding night. She really wanted to spend some alone time with Kurt. He put away his phone on the side table.
"While I love Brittany and Tina, how are we getting to take that big book downstairs on the plane?"
"Your luggage could hold it."
"Why does everyone make fun of my luggage? It's not like I packed five suitcases."
Rachel smiled. "We have gathered a few items so far this trip. My flowers will definitely be an interesting thing to try and check."
A loud thump, followed by a cheer could be heard from downstairs. Kurt sighed.
"We really should have went to your house. I can't believe the boys are actually downstairs watching the second Avengers movie. Do they not realize they have to be up at the latest by 7:30?"
"Yes, we could have. But I want to hear my father in law when he sees the condition Finn let his truck get into."
Kurt laughed at the thought. Rachel kissed his lips softly before he smiled at their hands. "I am glad we can wear our rings again."
"It did feel rather weird without them," admitted Rachel, admiring her hand. Kurt kissed her back and Rachel wanted more. They exchanged kisses for a few minutes, basking in the few moments of quiet.
"We should probably get some sleep after our moisturizing routines."
"Mercedes and Sam were cute singing Accidentally in Love, don't you think?"
"Kurt, you are not going to pressure Sam into proposing. Lauren already have Puck on the proverbial ropes. Be glad he didn't kill you."
"You were a part of that too."
"He won't kill his Jewish American Princess, however."
A smile was on the corner of Kurt's lips as he sat back on the bed. "Maybe Quinn and I should go into the wedding planner business together and start Lauren on a discount prepackaged deal."
"Well, at least we could get her to move to New York," smiled Rachel. "Although the part of me still locked in the innocent high school girl mentality wonders why, but I do miss her a bit. She doesn't come to visit often enough."
"You were never innocent in high school Rachel."
"Haha. And why did you want to kick Blaine during the handfasting ceremony?"
"Oh. That. Um," he sighed as he shifted on the bed. "There's an old Asian belief that two destined lovers are tied together by one red string. The Red String of Fate. I had the idea that we could do that for our own... wedding."
"Kurt honey, you were helping plan mine and Finn's," said Rachel sympathetically. "You don't have to be embarrassed about anything you and Blaine talked about."
"I know," he looked down. "It still feels wrong somehow."
"It always will," said Rachel. "When you're devoted for a long time to someone. What would you do if something were to happen to me and you moved on to someone else?"
Kurt sat still for a long time. "I don't want to think about it," he said softly. "I just got to keep you in front of our family and friends. I want to grow old with you Rachel." He sighed. "We've taken a lot of big steps these last couple of days. I think it's wearing on me more than I thought it would. I mean, I'm relieved, but—"
"It was more than we had planned," agreed the brunette. She took Kurt's hand and rubbed it. "And you handled it beautifully."
"I'm really starting to wonder if maybe it was a good thing that we didn't have to plan the wedding," he said with a small touch of humor. "I think I was still in shock from having to admit everything to a mob in the auditorium."
Rachel laughed. "Supposed mob. I think our friends were more dying of curiosity than going to lynch us. We haven't exactly been honest with them, not to mention probably about 80% of them expected you to get back together with Blaine and me with Finn."
"We're lucky they still love us," said Kurt. "I guess Facebook and Skype isn't enough."
Rachel laid her head on Kurt's chest. "We'll have to make a trip to L.A. soon." Kurt rubbed Rachel's back. "I know you do miss your other best friend. Don't think I didn't notice you wiping your eyes when she was talking about recording her single."
"I do miss her," said Kurt. "But she's happy. I couldn't ask for more."
Rachel laughed. "Are we going to become the couple that tries to get all their friends married off? Because that's going to become annoying really fast to everyone else."
"Oh, I don't know," said Kurt. "Tina and Mike are already there practically. Sam probably just needs a little nudging, and no Rachel, I won't do it. And Puck, well... he's Puck. You can never really guess what he wants to do. Finn's engaged. Quinn... I don't know."
Rachel frowned. "I keep noticing that she keeps looking at Finn and Juliet. You don't think she's thinking about Finn... do you?"
Kurt shook his head. "I noticed that too, but you know Quinn. Controlled and calm as the sea on the surface."
Rachel bit her lip and frowned.
"Well, at least Brittany and Santana are cute and adorable."
"Yes, they are," laughed Rachel as she scooted herself onto Kurt's lap. She kissed his neck before snuggling into it.
"As much as I love Artie, he definitely needs someone smarter than all of us."
"Yeah, like a Nobel Peace Prize winner," commented Kurt. "I always did feel sympathy for him. I mean, I found Blaine and had someone who understood, but he never really got that chance. Even Brittany had forgotten she had dated him."
Rachel winced. "That... must have hurt."
"I couldn't even imagine."
"We are lucky," said Rachel. "When I was younger, my Dads would always say that I would find friends once I got into college or the real world... I believed that for the longest because I thought when I moved to New York I would find kindred spirits. While I think that we have made some good friends in New York, I don't feel the same connection to them as I do to all of us. Even with all the backstabbing and lies that we once had... we really are a family." She paused and looked at Kurt carefully. "Maybe you mentally did send up a bat signal."
"Funny. Or it could be that we all still have family or obligations here in Lima."
Rachel chuckled and straightened Kurt's pajama top. "I prefer the bat signal."
Kurt smirked and ran his fingers through Rachel's hair. A thud came from downstairs, followed by Mike's coarse laughter.
"You want to do something to drown them out? I think I can provide a great distraction."
"Please," muttered Kurt as Rachel chuckled and kissed him again.
The next morning, Kurt awoke to find his wife already dressed and brushing out her hair.
"Morning," said Rachel, slightly muffled. She had stuck the end of her hairbrush in her mouth as she put her hair up in a ponytail. She had on a pair of well-fitting dark denim jeans tucked into a pair of low black suede boots with a black tank top and red sweater.
"I didn't even know you owned a pair of dark denim jeans," said Kurt as he held one eye blearily open. Rachel smirked.
"You don't buy all my clothes you know." Kurt rolled his eyes.
"It's not that. Honestly, it's just that you and pants aren't constant companions," quipped back Kurt.
"I am aware of that," said Rachel. "But these are comfortable, and better for working than a skirt. Speaking of which, you need to get up and get dressed."
Kurt whimpered and pulled the covers over his head.
"I'm not here."
"If you're not here Mr. Ghost, then why can I still see your lump in the bed?" She smacked his ass for good measure. Rachel heard a yelp and a hand shot out from under the covers and pulled her onto the bed. She laughed and tried to pin down the lump underneath her, but Kurt kept squirming. Rachel finally pulled down the top of the comforter and kissed his cheek.
"Come on Sleeping Beauty. Up."
"Beauty, really? You could at least call me handsome."
"It just doesn't have the same ring to it," said Rachel as she got up off the bed.
"You are that, but no."
"Sleeping refined, Kurt?"
"In the illustrious words of Santana the Latina Wonder, wan-ky."
"I can't believe you just said that."
"I can't believe you of all people are still in bed. You're the early riser."
"Kurt seriously," laughed Rachel. "Come on, we've got to get to the Lima Bean. You're in a mood today, aren't you?"
"I have sharpened my wits and am ready for battle," he said with a smirk. There was a knock on the door and as Rachel turned to open it, she heard a small squeak and the bathroom door slam. Finn looked less than amused as he poked his head in, his eyes shut.
"Breakfast is ready, if you guys are up."
"Finn, you can open your eyes," said Rachel, rolling her own. "I'm dressed and Kurt's in the bathroom."
"Oh," said the tall boy, opening them carefully.
"How was the movie?" asked Rachel as she took her phone and put it in her pocket.
"Oh, it was good," said Finn. "Better the second or third time around with our sound effects and Sam's bad voice overs."
"I'm glad it was fun," yawned Rachel as she sat down on the bed. "When do you have to go back Fort Benning?"
"Not till after New Years," said Finn. "And Mom's going to come down next month to go with me to meet Juliet's parents in Alabama."
"Wow," said Rachel. "Meeting the parents for the first time?"
"I've met her mom," said Finn. "Not her dad yet."
"You nervous?" asked Rachel as she crossed her legs.
"A little," he admitted. "I like her Mom though. She's sweet and she makes the best fried pickles."
"Good," said Rachel. "I'm glad you're doing well Finn."
"You too," said Finn. "Well, I'm going to go eat. Juliet and I are going on to the coffee shop after that."
Rachel nodded and Finn left. She sighed and picked at her boots. After a few minutes, Kurt stuck his wet head out of the bathroom door.
"He's hiding under the bed," smirked Rachel.
He came out in his bathrobe with a sigh. "Like Finn could fit under the bed Rachel." Kurt reached into his closet and began pulling out his clothes. Rachel kissed his cheek, rubbing his wet hair.
"I'm going to go downstairs," said Rachel. "See if the boys spent the night and are actually awake."
Kurt nodded and Rachel walked out the door and headed down the stairs.
"Mornin' Rachel," said Sam as she reached the bottom. "Sleep well?"
"Well enough," she said as she poured herself a glass of orange juice. "I didn't know you were staying here Sam."
"Just a couple of nights," said the blonde boy. "Mercedes' parents don't mind for me to stay there on the couch. But they weren't going to be home last night."
"Ah," said Rachel. "I think it's sweet that you two are being respectful and waiting for your wedding night."
Sam flushed red and choked on his bacon.
"Never mind then," laughed Rachel.
"Don't tell anyone," said Sam in a whisper.
"Not a peep," said Rachel with a smile. She took a sip of the orange juice. "I'm glad you're happy. You two are great together."
"I think so," smiled Sam. "I can't wait for her single to come out. I'll be the boyfriend to a famous star."
"You're more than that," said Rachel. "You're Sam Evans, savior of glee clubs and stripper extraordinaire."
"I think my stripper days are over," said Sam, nibbling on the rest of his bacon. "But my impersonations are still awesome."
Kurt came down the stairs with a slight clunk. He was wearing a pair of stylish knee high brown leather boots with decorative silver buttons down the sides over white fitted jeans. His long subtle two tone maroon sweater hung open over a grey Vogue t-shirt with black lettering and pushed up to his elbows. A brooch shaped like a ladybug made of bronze and silver gears shone quietly on his sweater lapel. Black suspenders hung low around his hips. He sat down at the bar with Sam and Rachel and helped himself to the eggs and toast. Rachel poured him a glass of orange juice and he nodded his thanks. Sam snorted.
"What?" Kurt said.
"Your Dad is outside with Finn," said Sam with a smirk. "He just saw the truck."
"Think you guys did a good enough job?" said Rachel. "Between the sign on the side, the shaving cream on the outside and inside, the cans tied to the back, the cab full of water balloons... even the wedding bells on the antenna?"
"I thought the extra flower petals in the seat was a nice touch," said Sam, biting off a piece of toast.
"Except for the glitter," muttered Kurt.
"Oh, I don't know. I thought the little plush dolls of me and Kurt tied together on the hood were pretty cute," said Rachel. "I'm assuming Santana gave up her voodoo dolls."
"Santana had voodoo dolls?" said Sam, looking confused. "I wondered where Puck got those from."
Juliet came in giggling, and gave Sam a thumbs up.
"You might want to get out there," said Juliet. "Finn may need some help cleaning the interior." Sam hopped up from the bar, wiping his mouth and grabbing his jacket. Juliet slid into a seat at the breakfast bar and picked up some grapes from the laid out morning meal. Kurt looked at her, a questioning eyebrow.
"I knew he would be," laughed Rachel. "It might have been a little too much to decorate the interior with the shaving cream. Who did that?"
"No one's saying," said Juliet. "They've closed up rank."
"Of course," said Kurt. "Solidarity among brethren."
"Puck however should be glad he didn't spend the night and couldn't be reached by phone," chuckled Juliet. "Mike took his sister and brother in law to the airport very early this morning. Blaine's going shopping, Matt took his mom to go see family, Joe's watching his younger sisters, and Artie's doing something with his Dad before he comes to the coffee shop."
"It wasn't that much shaving cream on the inside," said Kurt. "Just on the steering wheel and the words on the windows. Well, and the dash... but none on the leather seats thankfully."
Kurt nodded through the orange juice glass he was taking a drink out of. "I suppose I should go out there and see if they could use any help."
"No, you sit," said Carole, coming into the room from upstairs. She hugged Rachel's shoulders. "Eat. You too Juliet." They heard the front door open and close and Sam walking in with Mercedes, who was giggling as Sam was trying to lay kisses on her neck and she wasn't having it.
"Sam, stop. You just saw me like nine hours ago. Go help Finn," she swatted at him. Carole looked amused as Sam went back out the door. "Come join us for breakfast Mercedes."
"Thanks, but I just fixed breakfast for my mom and brother," said the black girl. "I came to pick up Sam, but I hear we may be a few minutes." She paused. "Was it that bad?"
"Not too bad," said Juliet. "It wasn't like the cab was covered in shaving cream."
Rachel stole a piece of Kurt's toast. He took a plate and filled it with food and handed it back to her. She pouted. He glared at her, which made her sit down beside him. Kurt looked up and saw the other three females in the room watching their silent conversation with questioning looks.
"What? I have to make her eat breakfast these days. She won't eat otherwise, then she'll get really hungry later. I've caught her staring at the massive deli sandwiches when we go grab something to eat."
"I don't eat meat, but they look so good. Maybe one of these days I will actually break down and try corned beef and pastrami... when I'm 80."
"Case in point," said Kurt, leaning his head to the side with a sigh.
"That reminds me," said Mercedes. "Between me and Quinn and your Dads, we collected lots of wedding presents. Burt said to hang on to them and give them to you after the wedding." She opened her bag and handed Kurt a stack of envelopes.
"Wedding presents?" said Rachel, confused.
"I think she means money and gift cards," laughed Juliet.
"Ooh, I didn't even think about gifts. It was the last thing on my mind what with the rush," said the brunette. She stuck her face over Kurt's sweater as he flipped through the envelopes. He picked up a slightly thick one.
"Oh that one is Mr. and Mrs. Schue's," said Mercedes. "It's thickness got me curious too when he handed it to me."
"We'll have to look at them later," said Kurt, looking at the time on the microwave. "It's almost 8."
"And we're done," said Sam, coming into the bar and collapsing in a chair. They hadn't even heard the front door open as Finn sat down and practically inhaled a plate of eggs and bacon. Burt came in behind him, shaking his head before he kissed Carole on the cheek.
"All clean." He handed the tied up dolls to Rachel who giggled at the little dolls. "Thought you might like these as a memento."
"Just don't give them back to Santana," said Kurt over his orange juice.
"Good boys," said Carole, rubbing Finn and Sam's shoulders. "Sorry that you got roped into cleaning, Sam."
Sam shrugged. "It's cool. At least the sign and the bells are still attached. And the cans are now attached to the truck gate instead of the bumper." Finn smirked and tossed the keys to Kurt, who groaned.
"Now you can drive around all day with them."
"Thanks Finn. I'll remember that for future reference," said Kurt with heavy sarcasm.
Juliet whimpered. "Please don't do anything to my car."
Kurt and Sam shared a contemplative look. "We'll just have to see."
"Oh lord, Sam and Kurt as co-partners in crime. That can't be good," said Mercedes.
Rachel came back down the stairs, putting her phone back in her pocket. "My Dads called and have invited everyone for dinner. Apparently there were enough leftovers from the catering to feed at least 15, so that's about perfect. So there will be singing and lot of cake. And a few bottles of wine and champagne."
"Sounds about like a Berry party," said Mercedes with a laugh. Kurt put a hand over Rachel's mouth to keep her from saying anything. He shook his head no to keep her from coming up with a retort.
"Alright, let's go," said Finn. Everyone started standing up and shrugging on jackets to leave with a thanks to Carole for breakfast.
After a few minutes of driving, they all pulled up to the Lima Bean. They made their way through the parking lot and found Quinn, Tina, Mike, Artie, Brittany, and Santana waiting outside with their coffee or hot tea talking. Mercedes, Sam, and Kurt went on inside to place their orders, but Rachel saw something out of the corner of her eye and she flinched.
And he was headed right for Kurt.
"We see him."
"I'm going in," said Rachel firmly.
They both nodded. Rachel opened the door and went in. Sebastian was already to Kurt, who was looking extremely irritated. Mercedes was shooting daggers at Sebastian while Sam was holding onto her shoulders, looking rather annoyed himself.
"So Mr. Fakey McGayPants, I come home from studying abroad for a couple of years and I was talking to Jeff on the phone and he was telling me interesting things about your wedding here in Ohio. I wondered how that could be possible considering gay and lesbian couples still can't get married legally in this state. But then he told me you were marrying a girl. A girl Kurt. Last time I checked, Blaine was still very much of the male variety."
Rachel had to give Kurt credit, because his voice was clear and calm, though she didn't know how. It was Sebastian, after all.
"For your information Sebastian, since you have been abroad I'll give you a small reprieve. Blaine and I broke up. Yes, as I'm quite sure you find that shocking and hard to believe, it did happen. We're still best friends, but it wasn't meant to be between us. And if you do decide to pursue him and leave his heart broken in the dust, not only will you finally have me to deal with, but you'll have my lovely wife, who's standing behind you looking none too happy."
Sebastian turned around and met the glowering face of Rachel, who was standing side to side with Santana. Rachel reached up and grabbed him by the ear.
"Since there are no glee clubs and championships on the line, and we're all adults, I've so wanted to do this." She pulled hard, and Sebastian groaned out loud.
"And I this," said Santana. She pulled hard on the other one, which made Sebastian whimper and fall practically on his knees. "Not only will you have them, but you'll have the rest of the former New Directions too. Blaine's our boy. And he will always be. Hurt him and I will go all Lima Heights on your sorry ass."
Together they walked calmly to the door of the Lima Bean and threw Sebastian out of the facilities. He looked on in confusion as Rachel and Santana waved bye-bye and slammed the door. They turned around to much applause from their friends and half of the Lima Bean patrons.
"Thank you. Thank you," said Rachel with a bow. She and Santana gave each other a hip bump with a giggle.
"Did you... really mean that?" said a voice from behind them. Blaine Anderson was standing behind them, looking stunned. Neither Kurt nor Rachel had realized Blaine was inside, but the others had.
"Yes," said Kurt, calmly. "He's a smarmy ass, Blaine."
"Even the donkeys don't like him," said Brittany over her frozen hot chocolate.
"And you deserve much better than that," frowned Rachel. "Think about what all he tried to do to all of us. He may have tried to turn over a new leaf, but it certainly didn't stick."
"Yeah," said Artie. "We do try to protect our own, you know."
"Even if we have to go about it in weird ways," said Mike. "A sing-off really Kurt?"
"I honestly didn't want any of us to land in juvie because of Sebastian back then," shrugged the countertenor. "He's not worth it. And yes, even you Santana."
"It's nice to know you thought of me behind bars," smirked the Latina. "Wanky."
Kurt rolled his eyes.
"Well, it's nice to know everyone cares about my love life," said Blaine, shaking his head at the insanity. "Makes a birthday boy feel special."
"Speaking of which," said Tina as she came back inside the Lima Bean and towards the group. "Happy Birthday Blaine!" She sat down a large round cake done in green and white. On top was green suspenders and a bow tie drawn in icing. Blaine laughed when he saw a little Nightbird symbol drawn next to the bow tie.
"Aw Tina," he began. "That's adorable."
"It's the least Asian Persuasion could do."
"Should we sing?" questioned Mike.
"Nah," said Brittany. "The Human Brain needs cake."
"Can't argue with that," said Mercedes. "Now come on Blaine and cut that cake."
Blaine grinned and took the knife Tina was handing him.
After filling their bellies full of cake and coffee, everyone assembled out into the parking lot to divide up transportation. But everyone was spending more time talking than they were leaving.
"Can we go now?" said Santana, looking at the time on her phone.
"That sounds like a great idea," said Quinn. "We have till noon." She pointed towards Tina and Rachel. "March my minions."
"We are not your minions," said Tina, turning around and shaking a finger at Quinn.
"No, not all of you," said Quinn. She put her hands on Kurt and Rachel's shoulders and pushed them forward with a grin. "Just these two."
"Yes Master," said Rachel automatically, taking her role as serious as possible with a smirk at Quinn. The group cracked up at Rachel's sudden playfulness, except for Finn and Juliet who had lingered inside. It was a clear day with a soft wind. Rachel's hair blew around her as she followed a certain dark haired former Warbler to his car.
"Blaine," she said as she got close. She threw her arms around his shoulders.
"Thanks," he said with a smile. "You know, 19's a big birthday. You should know."
"Pretty soon you won't be a teenager anymore," said Rachel. "You'll be old, like all of us."
"Nah," said Blaine. "I'll never grow old, like Peter Pan or Dick Clark."
"You'd be perfect in the role of Peter," gasped Rachel. "Come to New York Blaine, you'd be wonderful onstage."
Blaine smiled sadly. "Not all of us are meant to shine onstage. Though maybe someday I can compose the music you'll sing."
Rachel looked at him in surprise. "You want to do musical scoring? Blaine! That's amazing."
"I think that's my life's dream," he agreed. "It's not an easy task."
Rachel bobbed her head up and down. "I can attest to that."
Blaine unrolled his thick white scarf and placed it in the passenger seat as he sat down in his car. "Well, maybe someday I can compose the songs you will sing on Broadway. But I still have a good bit of schooling to finish first."
"Would you come to dinner tonight?" asked Rachel. "At my place. My Dads are going to do a couple of things. It's just going to be us former and current Berrys and the Hummel-Hudsons. And Juliet. I invited Mercedes and Sam and was going to invite Quinn, Brittany, and Santana."
Blaine shook his head. "I've still got a project I need to finish for the Men's Glee Club at college before I head back to Michigan. And I'm taking Puck shopping today for his work."
"… You're taking Puck shopping? Why?"
Blaine shrugged. "He asked. His manager is getting on to him for not having 'good enough' clothes to wear for stuff. He didn't want Kurt to overload him, so he went from one gay to another."
"Good for him, I suppose," Rachel frowned. "Bad way to spend your birthday."
"Could be worse," shrugged Blaine as he put on his seat belt. "At least Puck and I could discuss sports and music. I'm not sure what Kurt and Puck would have talked about."
"That," said Rachel, sticking her hands in her coat pockets. "is an excellent point. I had better go." She waved goodbye to Blaine. "Have a good shopping trip." He nodded and started his car. Rachel walked back over to the others. Kurt handed her back her coffee cup.
"Where did you get off to?" he asked.
"I was talking to Blaine," said Rachel. She took a sip of the warm beverage.
"Yeah, Tina was just telling me that Blaine is taking Puck shopping. I mean, really... I'm supposed to be the fashion expert around here." The hand on his hip made Rachel smile sadly. Kurt frowned.
"You seem upset."
Rachel shrugged. "He turned down my offer of dinner."
Kurt raised an eyebrow. "Going on a date so soon? I know Blaine's single, but I didn't think you'd start cheating till at least our third year of marriage."
Rachel rolled her eyes.
"Master Quinn, permission to slap the other minion?"
Quinn took a sip of coffee, amused at Rachel. "By all means. He's yours anyways."
Kurt moved to hide behind Mercedes.
"Nuh-uh. No way boy. You married her. You deal with the consequences."
"What a good best friend you are," muttered Kurt.
"The best," grinned Mercedes as she pulled him from out behind her.
"Come on you," said Rachel, tugging on his belt loop. He whined and waved at the others as Rachel headed towards the truck.
"It's hard to imagine the two of them ever having sex," said Artie.
"I don't know," said Mike after taking a sip of his warm tea. "Rachel definitely wears the pants in that relationship. She's quite forceful."
"Mike!" said Tina with a laugh, putting a hand on his chest. "Where did that come from?"
"Locker room... talk. Conversations held during Avengers movies notwithstanding."
Sam nearly spit out his coffee.
"Oh look, the lame gang is still all gathered," said a voice coming out of the coffee shop. Don't you all have lives to get back to instead of hanging out in backwater Lima? Asian, other Asian, Aretha, Lips, Wheels, I need to talk to Quinn. Now." Sue Sylvester, even when holding a little girl in her arms could still be scary. They scattered, and headed off to their vehicles. Quinn rolled her eyes while Brittany and Santana looked on in amusement. Santana was sipping her coffee and lightly smirking. Brittany was playing in Robin's hair, which made the little girl giggle.
"So I hear you're good for something after all Q."
"I try," she said lightly, not wanting to give away the sarcasm on her tongue. "I can still hold court with the best of them."
"Good," said Sue, switching her daughter to her other hip. "Then my work here is done. You're on your own Q. Should you need backup..."
"Don't call you," said Quinn, rolling her eyes. Santana raised an eyebrow in questioning, but Sue had already left.
"Don't ask," said the former head cheerleader. "It's Sylvester."
"It's amazing the hold she still has on us," murmured Brittany. "Was it all that Black Ops training we did?"
"Brainwashing," commented Santana.
"Bat signal," muttered Quinn. This sent Brittany into giggles. She held out her palm to Quinn, who placed half of hers to Brittany. Santana joined them, placing her own hand to theirs.
"Unholy trinity," said Santana. "You want to do spring break with us again Quinn?"
"Oh yeah," smiled the Yale student. "Can't get any better than Daytona Beach with a little sun and surf."
"And cute boys," said Brittany. Santana wrapped her arms around her.
"I'll just be happy to see this in a bikini," added Santana. Quinn rolled her eyes and smiled.
The rental company was already taking away the chairs and archway and such from the glassed in gardens by ten o'clock. Finn and Sam were holding onto ladders while Kurt and Mike were taking down bottles and fabric. Mercedes, Rachel, and Tina were unwrapping lights from the trees.
"You know, what do you do with everything once your dad's wedding was over?" asked Tina to Kurt.
"Donate, pass it on, rent," said the countertenor from on top of ladder. "Speaking of which, how the hell did you find a rental company on such notice anyways Quinn? I had to put in a deposit and give at least three weeks' notice."
"We got lucky," she said firmly as she and Brittany were passing by with armloads of flowers. She stopped for a moment "But we had to buy a lot of things. By the way, I'm leaving it up to you as to what to do with all the flowers."
Kurt groaned. "Thanks." Quinn smirked and headed off.
"I think that's all the lights," said Mike as he came down from the ladder with a large coil around his arm. "What are we doing with these again?"
Santana took them from him. "We're separating them into the individual strands and tying them. Then putting them in a box. Kurt's Dad wants them."
"Good," said the Asian boy. "I'm glad I didn't run through all the Target and Home Depot stores in Lima and Westerville for nothing."
Kurt looked appalled. "What is he planning to decorate the house AND the shop for Christmas next year?"
Finn looked up. "I think he thinks he's going to put us to work putting them up next year."
"Oh yeah, I can definitely see us up on the roof hanging Christmas lights."
"Well, maybe Finn," said Rachel walking up to the ladder. "You'll be making the hot chocolate and snarking out comments about how Juliet and I should be using an asymmetric pattern when putting the lights around the windows."
"Whoa whoa whoa," said Santana, coming up to the threesome. "Hold up a minute. I've got to record this to memory. I do believe I'm rubbing off on you Rachel." She gave her a high five. Kurt glared at the both of them before snapping at Finn, who was laughing and not holding the ladder steady. Rachel giggled and blew him a kiss before going and rejoining Mercedes.
"Whipped," commented Santana. "What happened to the Kurt Hummel from high school with a scathing reply stuck in his back pocket for all occasions?"
"She has access to my hair products."
"Really, that's your excuse?"
"Well, she has a point," said Kurt. "Except I'd be drinking the hot chocolate and not leaving them any when they come back in freezing."
"That's better," smirked Santana as Kurt handed down to Finn a large section of fabric.
"Hey," said Quinn to Rachel, walking up to her. "I actually need to talk to you two about something." Quinn motioned for Kurt to come down off the ladder and they walked casually through the dome to where their friends had set up the staged area for pictures.
"Mr. Berry told me last night that the photographer was interested in using our setup here in his studio," began Quinn. "He said a lot of bride and grooms come in wanting a way to announce their engagement, and fairy tale is an in-demand theme. He loved what we did. Said it was off-beat."
"That's great Quinn," said Rachel. "Are you going to give it to him?"
"For a price," said the blonde with a small smile. "He upgraded your photos to the deluxe package for free and refunded Kurt's dad his deposit. He'll also be here at 11 to pick everything up. But I told him that I'd have to ask you two first if there is anything you wanted to keep."
"Rachel?" asked Kurt.
She pulled her phone out of her pocket. "It's beautiful, but I'm not exactly sure where would we put any of it. The apartment is full of Kurt's finds as it is." She put her phone up next to the cloche and book combination with the crowns and took a picture. "But I want to replicate this, and I think I know two tiaras that would work perfectly."
Quinn laughed and curtsied. "Our two queens." Kurt groaned.
"I will admit, that's cute," he said, rubbing Rachel's shoulder. "Good idea."
"We have enough books around," said Quinn. "We can find you a suitable one."
"A colorful one please," said Rachel. The blonde nodded.
"What about the decorations in the tea house?" asked Kurt.
"It's going too," said Quinn. "Except for a couple of exceptions."
"Can I make one?" asked Kurt. "I spied a lock and key set. It was old and black, with two keys and a chain."
"It's yours," said Quinn. "I'm guessing a brooch?"
"How did you—" The former blonde cheerleader reached out and tweaked at the ladybug on his shoulder. "Come on," Quinn said. "We need to get started on the tea house. We have to bring everything up here so the photographer can load it into his van."
Around 11:30, everything that had been rented was gone, and everything that needed to be packed up was packed and loaded into the back of Burt Hummel's truck.
"Thank God," said Mercedes, collapsing on the grass inside the dome of the botanical gardens. "We're done. I'm going to be so glad to go back to classes after this."
Kurt was checking his phone beside her. Isabelle had a bad habit of texting him with her ideas. He always kept a running note file of everything she thought was fabulous, just in case he needed to bring it up again.
"Breadstix?" suggested Tina. The whole entire group had gathered in various states of sitting up or laying down.
"I could eat about three bowlfuls of pasta," agreed Sam from the other side of Mercedes.
They all watched as the staff of the botanical gardens checked their work and gave Quinn an approving nod. They had been careful not to do damage to anything.
"It is pretty here," said Juliet. "So well kept."
"Surprising, considering this is Lima," agreed Tina.
"Well, people do work here," said Finn. "They do take pride in what they do."
No one could argue with Finn's sentiment.
"Anyone ready to go back to their normal lives?" asked Quinn.
"No," said the group in unison.
"Breadstix it is," said Mercedes. "Think if we told them we are a wedding party, we'd get a discount?"
"I'm so totally doing that," said Santana from Brittany's lap.
"Let's text the others and see if they want to join us," said Mercedes. "The more the merrier."
"On it," said Tina, pulling out her phone.
"Hey Quinn!" said Artie, rolling up with something in his lap. "Saw this sitting by the door of the tea house, thought you might want them."
"Thanks Artie. I meant to grab those earlier," said Quinn, taking the package off his hands. She put it in Rachel's lap.
"What is it?" asked Kurt.
"They were hanging in the tea room, but I don't think you must have gotten to see them with everything going on."
"Oh my god," said Rachel as she opened the brown paper wrapping. There was two small windows, the first one held a photo of Kurt and Rachel snuggling against each other, surrounded by other photos of the pair from high school.
"Where did you take that?"
"In the arcade," said Mercedes. "You two didn't even notice."
Rachel laughed out loud when she saw the second window. The photo in the middle of the collage was perfect. She held it away from Kurt so he couldn't see it as she held it to her chest.
"Brittany took it," said Quinn. Brittany was giggling as Rachel finally turned it for Kurt to see.
"Ah, so my death will live in infamy," sighed Kurt. "However, that is a really good photo Brittany." The blonde grinned and she and Mercedes gave each other a pleased look.
"It is," agreed Rachel. "Are these old window frames from someone's house? They're gorgeous."
"Don't you love the old detailing?" said Tina. "We gave it a protective coat and a little decoration."
"I'm amazed you got that photo," said Rachel. "We need to play more laser tag."
"Oh no," said Sam, pointing at Kurt. "I got shot in the back by that one and killed for him by Santana."
Kurt stuck his thumb out at Rachel beside him. "I think she got revenge for you over three-fold, remember?"
Rachel held a finger up to her lips like she was blowing smoke off a gun.
"Yeah, we shouldn't play with Kurt and Rachel," agreed Mike.
"Agreed," said Quinn. "Though they made good flags."
"Next time maybe they can't shoot each other."
"Now that would be interesting," said Artie. "I'll have to figure out some new rules." He start rubbing his chin in thought.
"That frightens me," said Tina. Everyone agreed.
"We'd better get going if we're going to get a large table," said Mercedes. "Have the others responded?"
"Yep!" said Tina. "They're on their way. Puck said that he and Blaine would drop by before he left."
"Excellent," said Quinn. "Maybe we can get them to sing for Blaine's birthday too."
"Kurt!" said Rachel with a small gasp. "We forgot our gifts."
"Oh goodness, you're right," said Kurt, helping Rachel to her feet. "We'll meet you at the restaurant."
"Gifts?" asked Tina. "What gifts?"
"Our little secret," beamed Rachel. "Finally."
"You're not allowed any more secrets," said Mercedes. "A year and a half Hummel. That goes for the both of you."
"You're not going to let us ever live that down are you?" said Kurt, putting his arm through Mercedes' own.
"I'm expecting loud and beautiful babies."
"Oh god," groaned Kurt loudly, bumping her shoulder. "You would remember that from our sophomore year."
"How can I ever forget?" smirked the black girl as she bumped him back.
"Karma. Karma hates me," said Kurt.
"Isn't that a big book on sex?" asked Brittany as she and Santana walked beside them to the door.
"That's the Kama Sutra sweetie."
Finn and Juliet followed Kurt and Rachel back to the Hummel-Hudson household and they unloaded everything from the truck. Carole was not amused when they started bringing in not only the fabric she had requested Quinn to save for her, but also all the wedding flowers.
"What are you planning to do with all these?" said Carole. "Not that I mind, they're gorgeous…"
"We called around," said Finn. "A couple of the nursing homes said we could bring them to the residents."
"That's really thoughtful you two," nodded Carole. Juliet came in, holding the last of the fabric and handed it off to her future mother-in-law before heading up to the second floor for something.
"That's the last of everything," said Kurt, coming in with the last centerpiece. "We've got to go Finn if we're going to meet everyone." Juliet and Rachel came back down the stairs talking.
"So what are you going to do with all that fabric?" Finn asked his mom.
"My women's group is holding sewing classes for the community. They will make beautiful dress material for some little girls," said Carole. "We can always use spare fabric. Plus," she said, stacking it up neatly. "I have a project I'm doing for you two boys."
"With fabric?" said Finn, confused.
"Not for now," explained Carole. "But later," she said with a smile. "It's family tradition."
"Grandma?" asked Finn.
"Yes, she did it for me," said Carole. "Now go, or you're going to be late for your lunch with your friends."
Eating at Breadstix turned out to be a large affair as they took up a fair amount of the restaurant's space. Coach Beiste was there with her sister Denise and gave each of her former football players a hug. She even came and congratulated Kurt and Rachel on their wedding.
"I talked to Will this morning," said Beiste. "I was out of town with family, but was glad to hear you kids had fun." She smiled when she looked over the New Directions. "It amazes me that you all still meet up."
"We're a family Coach," said Artie. "And it's the holidays right?"
"You bet punkin," said Beiste. "Well, I'd better let you get back to your lunch, and I have a bowl of pasta that needs to eaten." She waved to the group and went back to her sister.
"So what's this about presents?" asked Tina. "I see a stack of boxes."
"Yes," said Kurt, standing up and looking at the group. "Rachel and I wanted to do something for everyone. We almost ended up in an argument because we couldn't agree at first. She didn't like my initial idea."
"Not that it surprises anyone," said Mercedes.
"We've gotten better," said Rachel with a small pout.
"Back on topic," said Kurt, rolling his eyes. "We wanted to do something fun, something that's us. All of us. We thought about iTunes gift cards because we all like music, but that didn't seem appropriate."
"But useful," added Artie. "Then we could all have bought Mercedes' single when it comes out."
"You'd better buy it anyway," said Mercedes, shaking a bread stick at him.
"Yes please do," said Kurt. "Or we will never hear the end of it."
"Ain't that the truth," said Santana. Mercedes sent her a glare. The Latina smirked.
"So we thought and thought about it, and while Mr. Schue would have been proud of us buying the Journey discography…"
This got a laugh from most of the table as Kurt smiled at his joke. Rachel wrinkled her nose up in amusement and started handing boxes down the table. As soon as they all got passed around, she stood beside Kurt, holding his hand.
"We hope you like them," said Rachel. "Kurt nixed my idea of doing autographed head shots from our portfolios till at least we've both been a lead in a Broadway show."
"Oh they're pretty!" said Mercedes with a squeal. She held up a scarf of black, red, and gold. They were striped horizontally. At the end, a large "ND" done in gold shone against the dark fabric. Just below that in much smaller letters was the phrase: Don't Stop Believin'.
"How perfect is it that Porcelain gives us scarves?" said Santana with a smirk, wrapping it around her neck.
"They are pretty," said Tina. "Thank you." She wrapped half her scarf around Mike.
"You're welcome," said Kurt. "And thank you guys. Although I know the meaning of monogram might be lost on some."
"It's still appropriate," said Quinn. "I mean look what happened right after we graduated. The New Directions lost Sectionals, and got disbanded. But Mr. Schue was able to bring them back together again."
"With a little help from Finn," said Brittany with a smile.
"We got lucky," he agreed. "But they all came back together."
"What came back together?" said Puck as he and Blaine walked in the door of the restaurant and came towards their friends.
"The New Directions," said Rachel. She handed Puck and Blaine both a box. "This is mine and Kurt's thank you gift to you all."
"A scarf," said Blaine, amused. "How appropriate." He bumped Kurt's shoulder with a smile.
"Man, that seems so long ago," said Puck.
"Six years," said Kurt. "Since me, Tina, Mercedes and Artie on guitar sang backup to the tortured lovers. And no comments from the peanut gallery."
"But Breadstix doesn't have peanuts," said Brittany with a frown.
"I should smack you more for that," said Rachel with a glare at her husband.
"Geez, I'm going to have a bruise," said Kurt, rubbing his shoulder. Rachel sighed and shared a smile with Finn.
"Maybe if you weren't so fair skinned, you might be better off," said Mike.
"I cannot help my Irish and German ancestry," said Kurt crossing his arms.
"Speaking of Irish," said Artie. "Anyone talked to Rory lately?"
"I do," said Brittany. "He writes to me all the time on Lord Tubbington's wall. He's still all leprechauny. I think he said that he just went backpacking through Europe and had a lot of fun. He said his favorite place was a leaning tower of Pizza. I mean, how do you have a leaning tower of Pizza? All those slices would just fall off and pepperoni would be everywhere."
"Pisa," said Rachel. "It's a famous landmark."
"Oh," said Brittany. "I thought it was just Rory's accent coming through on Facebook. "I had problems understanding him sometimes."
"We'd better get to ordering and eating," said Quinn to the group. "Before the restaurant kicks us out for taking up their space."
After a long lunch of laughter and even longer goodbyes for some, they all headed out to their vehicles. Puck had already left to go pick up Lauren and Jake. Tina and Mike were catching a flight back to Chicago that evening and had to go home and pack. Unique and Sugar both had been too late for the lunch, but caught them all in the parking lot. Kurt and Rachel passed off their gift with a smile. Unique squealed and hugged Kurt.
"Although how am I going to wear this in Miami?"
"You can start a fashion trend," said the fashion writer with a smile. She shook the scarf at him.
"I might just do that honey."
Matt couldn't make the lunch, so Rachel and Kurt found out his parents new address from Mike and drove his present over. He wasn't home yet much to their disappointment, and left it with his brother and a note thanking him. They finally settled into the truck once more and headed back to the Kurt's home, navigating through Lima traffic.
"Can you believe we fly back tomorrow?" asked Rachel as she watched the passing cars.
"Seems unreal," admitted Kurt. "Like waking from a dream." They stopped as a red light and there was honking all around them. Rachel started to laugh.
"Why are they honking?" said Kurt as the car next to them waved. Rachel giggled and waved back.
"Think about it Kurt. What's attached to the truck right now?"
"I'm going to kill them both," muttered the brown haired male. "And Dad for letting them do it."
"It's fun," said Rachel kissing Kurt's cheek. The light changed and they moved on. "It's not everyday we get to get married."
"Hm, I suppose," he said with a sigh and a smile.
"At least Breadstix did give Santana her discount," commented Rachel.
"Could have done without the staff coming out and singing with a cheesecake though."
"Oh you hush. You love that cheesecake. Although I'm not quite sure they believed we had just gotten married AND it was Blaine's birthday."
"With all the food this holiday, I'm not going to fit into any of my clothes," whimpered Kurt.
"Speaking of clothes," said Rachel with a smirk. "Quinn's bringing your Christmas present back tonight."
"Ahhh!" said Kurt, his face brightening up as he remembered. "Our Isabelle approved couture. I had almost forgotten." He put on his blinker to turn left into the neighborhood where his family home was. Rachel laughed at the thought that Kurt had let that slip his mind.
"I can't believe you of all people forgot about clothes."
"Well... easy to do when there's a wedding going on."
"Speaking of which," said Rachel. "While we're out delivering flowers, we need to get a large garment bag to put everything in."
"I will hold onto that bag with my life," said Kurt firmly. "The airline will have to drag it out of my cold dead hands."
Rachel patted his hand on the steering wheel. "It would just be easier to check it. I mean where would you put it? I know you, you wouldn't fold it in half for anything."
"Wrinkles are terrible to get out," he said with no hesitation. "I could just buy it a seat."
"Kurt, really," sighed Rachel. "It would be easier to just check it."
"I'm afraid it'd get lost," muttered Kurt.
"We could mail it again," the brunette offered.
"Do you really want to mail your wedding dress Rachel?"
"We'll check it," sighed Kurt. "But I am going to get that extra EV coverage."
"Kurt," laughed Rachel. "It's just a three hour flight. Hopefully the airlines wouldn't lose one garment bag in that short amount of time."
"You never know."
"My silly husband," said Rachel as Kurt parked the truck in front of his house. She got out and came over to the driver's side. She smiled and ruffled his hair.
"All mine," she said with a smile. She pushed her arms under his sweater and snuggled into his shoulder.
"Officially," said Kurt with deep chuckle. "You are adorable when you're being possessive. I used to think you were just being slightly jealous, but I've come to believe it's just one of your personality quirks."
Rachel wrinkled her nose. "I do get jealous sometimes," said the Jewish girl. "But most of the time I know I'm the one who gets to take you home."
"How Michael Bublé of you," commented Kurt with a smile. Rachel laughed.
"I always get to have your last dance," she smiled. "Come on, we have flowers to deliver."
It was almost four by the time they got all the flowers delivered between the two nursing homes they had called. Rachel looked in the back of the truck and saw the largest centerpiece was still there, along with another smaller one.
"I have one more stop to make," he said. "Also, I thought we'd take one to your Dads since we left one at the house too."
"That'll be great," agreed Rachel. "So where are we going?"
"Somewhere... special to me," said Kurt. "You'll see."
They got back on the road, and it was starting to cloud up.
"Please don't tell me it's going to rain," groaned Rachel. Kurt frowned.
"It's not too much further," he said. Rachel began to realize Kurt was headed for the city cemetery. He drove up through the main gate, and parked in a small lot. Rachel didn't even have to guess as she got out and took his hand. He picked up the flower arrangement and squeezed Rachel's hand. A lump caught in her throat as they walked down through the rows of graves. Through everything she had never even thought about if Kurt had wanted to honor his mother's memory.
"Just up this row," he said, pointing off to the right as Rachel took over leading. She came to a stop in front of simple light grey marble marker, decorated with only a small marble guardian angel and the name "Elizabeth Barrett Hummel" written on the top of the stone. Her birth date and death were written underneath. Kurt sat down the fresh flower arrangement next to a carefully arranged silk one. She wondered if Kurt had made it himself as she rubbed his shoulder. Neither of them spoke for a few minutes. Kurt grabbed for her hand.
"Thanks," he said quietly, leading them both away from the grave. "Every time I come here, I feel like I'm eight again."
"I wish I could have known you when you were small," said Rachel. "Maybe we could have been friends."
Kurt gave her a soft smile. "Maybe so. I kind of like the adult us better though."
"Eww," laughed Rachel. "You said the 'a' word."
"We got called Mister and Miss by high schoolers."
"Ugh, don't remind me," said Rachel. "That was painful."
"Technically we are adults," said Kurt with a shiver, looking up at the clouded sky. "We bought health insurance Rachel. We're probably going to have to file joint tax returns next year."
"We got health insurance just in case of emergencies," said Rachel. "That doesn't make us adults, it makes us... smart."
"Speaking of smart," said Kurt. "It'd be the smart thing if we start shopping before dinner. By the looks of things, I'd say it's going to be raining a while." Rachel nodded and they started to walk towards the main gate.
"Bye Mom," said Kurt softly, turning around and looking back. Rachel pulled gently on his fingertips and they headed to the parking lot.
The shopping trip was largely unsuccessful as Kurt couldn't find a large enough garment bag that suited his taste. They did manage to find an extra suitcase for the items they had accumulated from their wedding. They were still packing and getting dressed when Carole knocked on Kurt's door. Rachel shut the door to Kurt's closet quickly as she was still mostly topless.
"We're going to go ahead and go on to the Berry's," said Carole. "You still have the keys to the truck?" Kurt nodded and Carole looked around.
"Where is Rachel?"
"In the closet," said a muffled voice. "I wasn't dressed."
Carole shook her head with a small smile and waved goodbye. Rachel came out sheepishly holding her bra. She turned around and had Kurt fasten it for her.
"I know we're married, but I didn't want her to see me like that."
"Since there are three couples in this house over Christmas vacation, I think Carole is used to the idea that somewhere in this house there is someone half naked."
"You are terrible," groaned Rachel. She pulled on a royal blue sweater from the bed and put her hair up in a twist in the mirror. Kurt handed her the pair of ankle boots sitting beside it. She sat down and put them on over her black tights. Kurt leaned over and kissed the bare skin of her neck before resting his head on her shoulder.
"By this time tomorrow, we'll be back in our apartment," she smiled as they both looked in the mirror. He was wearing a fitted brown wool sweater over a red dress shirt and matching bow tie. Rachel played with the ladybug brooch he had taken off his other sweater and attached it to this one.
"I'm glad I bought you that," smiled the brunette.
Kurt smiled. "It's one of my favorites." He extended his hand to her. "Come on, Brittany's already texted me. She's on her way to dinner. So's Quinn. And we still have to get our stuff in the truck that didn't go into the car with Dad and Carole."
"I'm glad Daddy is taking us to the airport tomorrow," said Rachel with a sigh. "I think I'm going to be too exhausted to drive."
"Hey," said Kurt. "Do you want to someday get new wedding rings?"
"Why?" asked Rachel. "Do you not like these Kurt?"
"No, it's not that," he shook his head. "I was just curious. We did rush with everything, so I wondered."
Rachel shook her head. I like them. They're vintage. They have memories and history attached to them. They have a story to tell."
Kurt nodded. "I like them too. We picked them out together."
Rachel nodded and began piling things into her suitcase as Kurt grabbed the last of their stuff and headed for the stairs.
"Don't forget your flowers!" he yelled from the stairs. Rachel smiled as she picked up the vase with her bouquet and turned off the light.
"Jesus, that rain is cold," said Kurt as he put down the umbrella in the hallway after setting down the arrangement. The sky had opened up on their way to Rachel's house and it was now raining steadily. Rachel came in, balancing another umbrella and her wedding bouquet. She sat it down on the table in the hallway next to the other flowers.
"You finally made it," said Mercedes, coming into the hallway. "Thought we were going to have to send out a search party."
"It's just a little rain," said Rachel, shaking out her curls. "Is everyone here yet?"
"Missing Santana," said Brittany, bouncing on the balls of her feet. "She was having a conversation with her mom when I called her."
"At least we're not the last ones," said Kurt as he took the arrangement into the dining room. He laughed and stuck his head back out the door. "Your Dads already have one," he smirked at Rachel.
"Oh well," said Rachel with a smile. "Guess they got one last night."
"We took it with us when your Dad and I thought we were going to take all this food to one of the shelters downtown," said Hiram walking into the hallway from the kitchen. "But one was closed and the other wouldn't take already prepared food."
"Closed?" frowned Rachel. "When it was snowing?"
"So it would seem."
"Strange," said Mercedes with a frown. Hiram kissed the top of Rachel's head. "So instead we get to have a large family and friends dinner with your new family."
"Didn't we just do this last night?" laughed Mercedes.
"I think we did," said Rachel. "But at least this time I'm in more comfortable shoes." They both laughed and Brittany twirled Rachel around in a circle.
"And the dishes are a little different," said Hiram. "We did a little remixing with the courses."
"It'll be delicious Daddy," said Rachel. "I'm sure we'll be happy with whatever you did."
"Good," said Hiram. "Because we have a lot of food to get rid of. Both the upstairs and downstairs fridge are full."
"Sam and Finn definitely will help you take care of that," said Kurt, coming up beside Rachel with an extra glass of champagne. She took it from him with a smile as she saw Quinn.
"Lush," chided the blonde with a smirk. "I thought I heard voices. I took your clothes upstairs to your bedroom Rachel. Sorry I held them hostage."
Kurt perked up. "They're here? Finally!" Rachel grabbed him by the back of his sweater.
"After dinner honey, then you can see the pretties."
"Aww... he really is like a dog with a shiny new chew toy," said Brittany.
"My Isabelle approved Christmas present," said Kurt. "Not a chew toy."
"Chew toy," said Rachel, kissing his cheek. "Come on, let's go sit down with the others."
"So what did Kurt get you for Christmas?" asked Mercedes. "I don't think you ever said babe."
Rachel looked at Kurt, who seemed to be ignoring the conversation and looking at the ceiling.
"Apparently I have to wait till March for mine."
Rachel poked his shoulder. "Ask him."
"Wait, you haven't even given her a hint?" said Sam. "Don't you think that's a little mean?"
"Maybe," said Kurt, thrumming his fingers across his arm. "But I really want it to be a surprise, and I don't want her to be stressed."
Rachel looked at him strangely. "Stressed? Why would I be stressed over my Christmas present?"
Kurt mentally kicked himself. "Because you could... possibly be. I know you will be. So that is why I am waiting. And you are waiting."
"Okay, now I'm dying of curiosity," said Mercedes. Quinn nodded.
"I think you're going to have to tell her Kurt," said Brittany. "They all want to know now too."
Kurt sighed. He handed Brittany his empty glass. "Would you go get me more please? I'm going to need it in a few minutes to deal with the bruises." Brittany took the glass and he went back out into the hallway. By that time, the adults had gathered in the living room with the young adults. Kurt came back in with a large envelope, looking nervous.
"Okay, I guess I couldn't hold onto this forever," sighed Kurt. "I do have you a present Rachel... and it's this." He held up the envelope.
"It's an envelope," said Sam. "Pretty cheap present."
Kurt rolled his eyes. "There's more than just the envelope. It's a pretty big thing, actually."
"Go on," said Rachel, sipping on her champagne.
"You know how Tisch holds workshops with directors and casting agents?"
"Of course, but they're like NYADA's. Hard to get into even when you're a senior."
"Well, Tisch is holding one in March," said Kurt. "With Scott Hillsby. You know him. He's one of biggest—"
"He just did Peter and the Star Catcher," broke in Rachel. "Of course I do. It's rumored that he wants to do a modern day remake of Hair."
"And he's doing private interviews that day," said Kurt. Rachel looked up in surprise. "Kurt don't tell me you—"
"No not me," said Kurt. "But... I put my name into the lottery a few times for one of the five packages they offer up to the rest of the student body, and won." He handed the envelope to Rachel. "Your interview is on March 12 at 3:30. I hear on the blogs that he's looking for his next stars for the remake."
"Kurt!" said Rachel, in shock. "I can't take this!"
"Yes, and you will," said Kurt firmly. "I've already put your name down for the interview. You'd be a great Sheila."
"But I'm not a Tisch student. I—"
"I already checked with administration and the workshop heads, it doesn't matter. You're going."
Rachel tackled Kurt. "I can't believe you. You idiot!" She buried her head in his shoulder as she gave him a punch. He winced.
"Ow! Bruises Rachel!"
"Sweetie, let Kurt go," said Leroy, walking into the room with Santana.
"You idiot! I can't believe you'd do that," said Rachel, wiping her eyes.
"Well, I have to get you to Broadway somehow," he said with a soft smile.
"You are going with me," said Rachel firmly. "I'm pushing you in front of me at that interview Kurt Hummel."
"It's a private interview Rachel, I don't think—"
"I don't care," she said. "You're going too. We can duet together. I'll figure out something. Oh my god, what am I even going to wear? What are we even going to sing?"
"Shouldn't that be Kurt's words?" said Mercedes, amused.
Kurt sighed and took the champagne from Brittany. "See, this is why I didn't want to tell you till March."
"And I would have hurt you," exclaimed Rachel. "12 days!"
"Plenty of time," he added, taking a sip of his drink.
Rachel hit him again for good measure.
"So he finally broke down and told her huh?" said Santana as she sat down beside Brittany. The blonde nodded.
"They both knew?" glared Rachel.
"Well, I had to tell someone when I found out."
"I think he was just calling to gloat," said Santana.
"Hey, I put in a bid for you too," said Kurt. "And I still do have that extra ticket to the workshop he's doing."
"I might take you up on it," said Santana, taking a sip from Brittany's glass.
"Well, let's eat," said Hiram. "And congratulations on your interview sweetie."
"My husband is an idiot, but I love him." She kissed his cheek and took Quinn by the arm and marched into the dining room.
Kurt sighed. Mercedes chuckled and patted his shoulder, going into the dining room with Sam. Brittany and Santana followed, along with Finn and Juliet. The redhead grabbed Kurt's hand and dragged him into the dining room as well.
Quinn came up to Kurt after dinner.
"That was a very smart and stupid thing you did."
"It was a one in a few hundred chance," said Kurt. "I was surprised when I won."
"You won on your merit Kurt. And you gave it to her."
He drained the rest of his glass of wine with a sigh. "I planned to do that when I put in my bid." He paused. "Do you think I shouldn't have?"
"You need to do what will make the both of you happiest."
"So double interview?"
Quinn laughed and played with the rim of her glass. "Tell Rachel and Mr. and Mr. Berry I said thanks for dinner, but I think I'm going to skip dessert and head home. All this cute couple-y stuff is too much."
Kurt frowned. "I'm sorry Quinn."
"Don't be," said the blonde. "Brittany and Santana are my best friends, and I love spending time with you and Mercedes. Plus, yours and Rachel's parents remind me that there are still functional families out there."
"Still... I know how that feels."
Quinn waved him off. "I'll see you in New York." He walked her to the door, his eyes questioning. She gave him a nod, and he sighed. He reached forward and gave her a hug.
"Take care of yourself first Quinn."
"You know me, just a home wrecker."
"You're better than that, and you know it."
She looked over his shoulder. "Am I really?" She headed towards her car.
Rachel came over to Kurt and they both watched as Quinn pulled away in the rain.
"Is something the matter with Quinn?"
"Yes and no," said Kurt, rubbing the bridge of his nose. "But I'm not poking that hornet's nest yet."
"Come on," said Rachel with a smile. "Daddy's taking out the leftover wedding cake."
"Talking to me again, are you?"
"Come on! Cake!"
"How many glasses have you had?"
"Enough?" said Rachel with a smirk. "I might just have more before the night's out."
"You are not getting onto that plane hungover, I'm warning you."
Later that evening after everyone had left and Hiram and Leroy had gone to bed, Kurt and Rachel decided they were not the least bit tired and broke into the rest of the wedding cake and started helping themselves to the second to last layer in the basement.
"I still can't believe you," said Rachel, holding up her fork. "How did you not tell me about that?"
"I wanted it to be surprise," said Kurt. "It was hard keeping such a big secret from you."
"You won an interview with Scott Hillsby, oh my god," said Rachel. She took another bite of the chocolate with a sigh. "I still can't believe it."
"Well, it was a stroke of luck," said Kurt. "I think you'll do amazing Rachel."
"You're an idiot, but I love you," she said from her position on the couch. She got up and sat down beside Kurt on the floor. She fed him a bite of the chocolate and laid her head on his shoulder.
"Want to break into the liquor cabinet again?"
"I think I just want to go upstairs," yawned Kurt. "Brush all this sugar off my teeth before decay sets in."
"And the alcohol," said Rachel. "Glad my Dads keep a stocked bar now?"
"Mmhmm," said Kurt. "I needed that last drink I think."
"Come on," said Rachel. "We have to clean up."
Kurt wrinkled his nose, debating on whether he wanted to get up. "Do we have to? I am quite comfortable on the floor."
"Bed's better," said Rachel.
"It is," said Kurt sleepily. "You'll be there."
Rachel smiled and put the cake back in the fridge while Kurt put their forks and glasses into the sink.
The next morning, Kurt awoke to the sound of his cell phone. He picked it up quickly off the bedside table once he recognized Isabelle's ringtone.
"Kurt!" said Isabelle with a bit of a squeal. "Why didn't you tell anyone you were going home to have a wedding? I could have given you another week off for a honeymoon! And even if it was in Ohio, I still would have been there for you."
Kurt through his sleepy haze, stared at the phone before looking at the clock. It was after ten, and Rachel was out of bed as he reached for her.
"I didn't know," he said, a little bleary eyed. "It was not in my plans. It was a bit of whirlwind thing."
"It looked gorgeous. The pictures don't do it justice, I imagine. You're going to have to bring them in to work one day and let us see them."
"On your Facebook honey. The whole office is talking about them."
The countertenor put Isabelle on speaker phone and pulled up his Facebook. He laughed softly when he saw that the photographer had posted a few images to his own photography studio page and had tagged him and Rachel in the photos.
"... And that suit! Wherever did you find vintage Gucci in Lima of all places?"
"Would you believe it was found for me? Speaking of suits, thank you for helping Rachel out with her Christmas shopping."
"That dear girl. I think she was surprised when I actually said yes. Like I could refuse an online shopping trip for one of my favorite employees."
Kurt laughed at that. "Well, it is a gorgeous grey suit." He fingered it through the open garment bag hanging on Rachel's closet door. "And don't think I didn't hear about Rachel's dress."
"Think of it as a wedding present. I can't have my employee's other half not looking fabulous at the Vogue party on New Years. Well, I had better go. Paul just brought me the preview for Britney's new perfume. This is like what, her fifth one? I'll see you in a couple of days honey."
He hung up the phone, feeling amused. Rachel came back into the room, smiling at seeing him awake.
"Daddy seems to think he might have an extra garment bag big enough for everything," she said, sitting on the bed beside him. Kurt nodded and held up his phone.
"I just off the phone with Isabelle," he said. "The photographer posted some of the images from the wedding on Facebook and tagged us. Now my office is talking about it." He laughed. "Should I call Quinn and tell her that her work is the talk of at least part of New York?"
"Let her find out for herself," said Rachel. "We still have to get to the airport."
Kurt groaned and pulled the covers back over his head.
"By the way, I found your pajama top hanging on the shower curtain. I'm curious as to how it got in there."
Kurt looked down at his chest, not even realizing he was missing it.
"I think I need more sleep because I'm not even sure I have an answer at the moment. I think it might have involved cake and/or toothpaste."
"Uh-huh," said Rachel with a smile. She crawled under the covers as well, settling down next to him.
"I kind of like you bare chested." Rachel ran her hands over the smooth, toned skin.
Kurt sleepily raised an eyebrow. "And I like clothes. Which is why I normally wear them. But feel free to run around naked if you want."
"Haha," said Rachel. "You really are out of it, aren't you?"
"I could sleep for like five more hours. What time do we have to be at the airport again?"
"Our flight leaves at 2:30."
"Go back to sleep for another hour," said Rachel. "Then you must absolutely get in that shower."
"Yes honey," mumbled Kurt sleepily. Rachel rolled her eyes and kissed his forehead. She got back off the bed and went downstairs.
Three hours later, they were standing at the airport waiting for their flight. Rachel was texting someone from NYADA. Kurt fingered the scarf around her neck. It was the same as the others, but theirs had a small difference. The ND had a gold star in the background, along with their names.
"I hope Dad doesn't kill me for putting all the scarves on the emergency credit card," said Kurt with a sigh.
"You mean that scarf Finn was showing to me yesterday afternoon?" said Burt in amusement, coming up behind them. Kurt spun around quickly and put his arms around him.
"Dad! I didn't think you were coming. I thought you'd be at work."
"Well, I do own the tire shop, I can take off when I want."
"I know that Dad," said Kurt. He held his father close. "I'll pay you back I promise."
"Kurt, I know you will." He laughed and looked at Rachel. "Weren't we just doing this about a week ago?"
"I think so Mr. Hummel," said Rachel, putting away her phone and giving Burt a hug too. "Except I think he was hugging me because he was afraid my Dads were going to kill him."
"Seems so long ago now," commented Kurt.
"More than a few secrets being discovered, a wedding, and an epic laser tag game ago," said Rachel with a smirk.
Hiram walked up to Kurt and Rachel. "The airline approved your insurance Kurt. You're ready to go." He handed Kurt a receipt and some paperwork.
"Thanks," said Kurt, sticking it in his bag.
"Insurance?" said Burt, furrowing his brow.
"For the clothes," said Kurt. "There's no way I was not insuring that."
"Three hour flight Kurt," said Rachel, shaking her head at her husband.
"So if you had one of Barbra's dresses she wore to an awards show, you wouldn't get insurance?"
"I'd be driving that puppy personally back to New York," said Rachel with a scoff.
"See?" smirked Kurt.
"Sorry sweetie, I don't think I can get you one of Barbra's dresses," said Hiram, kissing the top of her head. "But I can get you on a flight. Which is what you need to be doing."
Rachel looked at the time with a sigh. "I know." She kissed Hiram Berry's cheek. "We'll come soon to visit as soon as we can Daddy. Tell Dad I love him and I'll miss him too."
"I will," he promised as she hugged him. She hugged Burt too before picking up her carry-on and her wedding flowers. Kurt hugged Burt.
"We'll try to come home before too long," said Kurt into Burt's shoulder.
"Whenever you want to. You know all you have to do is ask. Both of you."
"Bye Dad," said Kurt, picking his bag.
"Oh, before I forget," said Hiram, handing Kurt a box. "I know it's tradition for you to eat your top layer of your wedding cake on your first anniversary, but I don't think between the two of you it'll last that long considering you decimated the second layer last night."
"Oops," said Rachel with a laugh.
"Did we really eat the whole entire layer?" asked Kurt. Rachel nodded.
"We were celebrating. Scott, Kurt."
"No wonder I felt 20 pounds heavier this morning."
"Go on you two," said Burt with a laugh. "Before you miss your flight. Call us when you land safely." They waved goodbye to their Dads and headed away.
Kurt and Rachel settled into their seats on the plane after putting their things away. She started to admire her bouquet with a sigh.
"What did you do with your boutonniere after the wedding?" asked Rachel. Kurt pointed to his bag.
"It's being pressed in the book I brought to read. You know the one by Carson Phillips?" Kurt snorted. "I thought I might be able to read over vacation. I was so delusional."
"Well, you weren't exactly expecting to have a wedding either."
"True," said Kurt. "That was at least a few years away."
"Would you change a thing?"
Kurt thought about this as he crossed his legs in the seat. "I don't think so. Well, I would have shot you first."
Rachel laughed. "You know, we're the old married couple among our friends now."
"I doubt we'll be alone for long."
"I'm glad I got you first," said Rachel with a smile. "Imagine if Puck had snatched you up."
"Okay, I definitely need a drink for that thought," said Kurt, reaching for the stewardess button.
"Kurt, we're not even in the air yet," said Rachel with a laugh as she grabbed for his hand. She pushed her hair behind her ears and played with his fingers. "You don't think Puck would make a cute boyfriend?"
"I suppose he'd be novel for a couple of weeks," said Kurt. "But long term, no."
"And I am?"
"You I don't have to worry about running off and I don't know, joining the circus for extra cash."
Rachel covered her mouth to keep from giggling as Kurt felt his phone vibrate. He pulled it out to check the message when a stewardess stopped on their row. "I'm afraid you'll have to turn that off for now sir. ...Oh, what beautiful flowers."
"Thank you," said Rachel with a smile.
"Let me guess, you just got married?"
"Are we that apparent?" asked Kurt.
"The flowers and bakery box are a dead giveaway," said the flight attendant with a slight smirk. "Headed on your honeymoon?"
"Going home," said Rachel. "Unfortunately we are penniless theatre students."
"Well, at least you got to have a wedding," smiled the flight attendant. "Was it beautiful?"
"Very much so," said Rachel. "Our friends threw us a wedding."
"Wow, that sounds like fun."
"Nerve wracking," muttered Kurt. The flight attendant laughed.
"Well, you seemed to have survived, and you're still holding hands, so it must have not been that bad."
"It wasn't," said Rachel. "It was really nice."
"If you'd like," began the stewardess. "We have a little room in the cold storage. We could put your flowers and cake back there. Get it out of your way for a little while."
"That would be wonderful, thank you," said Kurt. Rachel nodded and handed them to the stewardess.
"And congratulations," the stewardess said. "I hope you two have a great marriage. My name is Christine if you need anything."
"Thank you," said Rachel. She watched as Kurt pulled out his MP3 player.
"What?" he said. "I do have an audition on the 30th."
"I didn't say a word," smirked Rachel. "But you'd better be thinking of the perfect song for March."
"Fine, give up your Christmas present," sighed Kurt.
"I'm not giving it up," said Rachel. "I'm just... sharing."
"Uh-huh," said Kurt, sticking his ear buds in. "I'll believe that when I actually get you through that door in front of me."
"Rachel Barbra Ber—"
Rachel snorted. "You do it too."
"Well, you've always been a Berry for as long as I've known you," he whined. Rachel kissed his cheek.
"I am happy to be Mrs. Rachel Berry Hummel."
"What? No Hummelberry?"
"Haha," said the brunette. She laid her head on his shoulder.
The seat belt sign came on, and they both buckled in. Kurt started his player and found the song he was going to sing for his audition. He pulled out a notebook out of his bag, going over the words he had written down for probably what was the 1000th time. He wanted to be perfect. This was his dream. He looked over at his wife with a smile as she was daydreaming out the window. She grabbed his hand when they climbed into the air and held it until they leveled off. Kurt listened to a couple of songs for fun and went to ask Rachel her opinion on something, pulling out his ear buds. With a smile, he realized she had fallen asleep against the window. He gently took his hand from hers and grabbed a pillow out of the overhead compartment and placed it gently under her sleeping head. He didn't even ask her this morning how long she had been awake. She must have been up a while talking to her Dad before work. She was still sleeping peacefully when the stewardess came around with drinks. He took a couple of bottles of water and a cup of tea. He sipped on the warm beverage and pulled out his book with a sigh. At least he could get some reading done.
Rachel felt something pressed against her lips as she awoke a little too sleepily to her taste. She realized Kurt was kissing her and she smiled before kissing back.
"Afternoon sleepyhead. You've got to get up. You have pillow hair."
She yawned. "Have we finished leveling off? I'm kind of thirsty."
"Honey we've landed. We're at JFK."
Rachel's eyes popped open in confusion. "I slept the whole flight?"
Kurt chuckled. "Yes. Come on, up." He kissed her lips once more and helped her stand. She stretched with a small yawn before feeling of her hair. She tried to straighten it in a hand mirror from her purse as Kurt got their things together.
"Don't forget these," said Christine, the flight attendant they had spoken to earlier. She handed Rachel her flowers and the cake.
"The other girls were ooh-ing and ahh-ing over your flowers and cake. They're jealous. They said to tell you congratulations on your marriage."
"Tell them we said thank you," smiled Rachel. Kurt took Rachel's hand and they headed off the plane after sorting their possessions between them. They got to baggage claim and Kurt recognized the flight attendant who had been handing out snacks and beverages with a group of others in the same uniform as hers.
"You mean it was them? Damn, he's hot."
"Why thank you ladies, it helps to make a gay man feel appreciated by the fairer sex." The female flight attendants squealed in surprise as a group.
"Kurt!" laughed Rachel. "That was—"
"Funny?" he chuckled.
"Now they're going to think I'm your beard."
"Nah, you'd look terrible with one," said Kurt. "All scruffy and bumpy."
"Trying to make me into your boyfriend, I see how it is. Unfortunately Kurt Hummel, I am quite female."
"I am well aware of this fact," he said with a smirk. "I don't know. Sometimes I do think it's funny to play with sexuality when there's no harm done. I mean... I never was comfortable with it in high school since I had to fight for it."
"Well, easy to do I suppose there's no one to understand."
Kurt made a face. Rachel kissed his cheek. Kurt approached the desk next to baggage claim and showed his paperwork. The attendant handed over their checked bags with a smile and a nod.
"Now look. See? Our bags made it fine." She reached for the suitcases and Kurt grabbed for the garment bag and cuddled it to his chest with a whimper.
"You are adorable." She handed him his suitcase and he moved the garment bag to his shoulder.
"Something could have happened you know."
"Uh-huh. I can smell the bagels from here," moaned Rachel as she took in a deep breath.
"Want to go get dinner after we drop off our things at the apartment?" said Kurt.
"Sounds perfect," said Rachel. She put her flowers under her arm and took Kurt's hand into her own as they walked through the airport and into New York City.