AN: The long wait is finally over. Thanks everyone! This is dedicated to all the loyal Brittana/HeYa fans. Let's keep the flame burning.

JUST THE GIRL

By: peach83

"I can't be there."

Santana was in the living room of her father's penthouse in Manhattan and thank god, her new step mom who was younger than her was nowhere to be found. Just because she supported her dad in his addiction to marry whenever he wanted to didn't mean she approved of the brides, most of whom were obviously just in for the money.

Dr. Lopez sat opposite her, carrying his half-filled glass of whiskey.

"Stop being a pussy. You're a Lopez."

Santana cringed.

"Ugh, it sounds so inappropriate when the word comes from you. Please don't say that again." The brunette almost gagged.

"Pussy." The older Lopez taunted.

"Dad! You're creeping me out!"

Dr. Lopez laughed in amusement at his daughter. When she first walked into his home with her head down, he thought she was there to talk about her career path, again. Santana had changed her mind so many times, he'd gotten so used to it. What he never expected was her daughter to open up about a girl, or Brittany in particular.

Santana never talked about a girl, ever.

This was the first time.

And when he found out what it was all about, he was happy because he approved of Brittany and at the same time, sympathetic.

Just when Santana found her match, that match had to be engaged to someone else.

"You have to tell her that you love her, kid."

"Everyone says that like it's that easy." Santana chugged some vodka, avoiding her father's eyes.

"Everybody?"

"Sugar and Quinn. We planned on destroying the wedding, but I can't do that to Brittany. I don't want to hurt her. She really wants to marry Ashley."

"So you're letting her go?"

"I just want her to be happy, dad."

"Oh kid, you're growing up so fast." Dr. Lopez got up from his seat and sat beside his daughter, wrapping an arm around her shoulders.

Santana rested her head on her father's shoulder, feeling as a drop of tear fell from her eyes.

"You still have to tell her."

"I want to, but-"

"No but's. You don't have to destroy the wedding. Just tell her how you feel."

"You really think I should?"

"I think you should lay your cards on the table. What do you have to lose?"

x - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - x

Three days before the wedding, Ashley had to take a flight to Canada for business and would be back just in time for the wedding. Brittany slightly objected, but eventually let her fiancée go. She wondered if this was how it was going to be when they were married.

Family business before her.

Ashley was very apologetic. So was her family who visited Brittany to personally extend their apologies. Ashley's father was very old and was not in any condition to travel. They had always been nice to her so she couldn't really be angry.

"What are you thinking?"

The voice startled Brittany from her thoughts.

It was her one of her bridesmaids, her cousin Amber, who insisted to throw her a bachelorette party despite Brittany not wanting to have one. They were at a bar in L.A. Marley, her other bridesmaid, had invited all their female cousins and Santana.

Remembering Santana who has yet to arrive, Brittany looked at Amber.

"What's your beef with Santana?"

"What's my beef with Santana? Really?"

"Well, I know you slept together, I just… I wonder why you're so bitter."

"I'm not bitter." Amber said casually.

"But you hate her."

"I don't hate her. I just dislike her. And why do you care?"

"Because she's my maid of honor and my best friend, and I don't want you to give her a hard time."

"You know, if heart breaking was a crime, she'd be on death row." Amber turned to the bartender and asked for a shot.

"Did you have feelings for her?"

"What?" Amber laughed, finding Brittany amusing.

"Because you said-"

"I don't. I just felt used. I can't help it."

As the bartender gave Amber's request, the girl took the shot, humming as the alcohol went down her throat.

"Speaking of the devil." Amber muttered.

Following her cousin's line of sight, Brittany's eyes lit up as she found Santana in her sexy, tight-fitting, short black dress, heading their way.

They grinned at each other.

Amber just raised an eyebrow at her cousin who looked like she forgot who was there with her. Before the two bestfriends could say a word to each other, Amber had already grabbed Santana's hand, pulling her towards the dance floor.

"Lopez, dance with me."

Santana turned a helpless look at Brittany, who just looked surprised.

"But I don't-"

"You owe me, bitch."

Santana was rendered speechless.

Brittany just gave her a reassuring smile.

Santana smiled back.

Needless to say, the dance was awkward, especially when the song turned into a slow song. Amber and Santana were standing as far away from each other as possible. Catching the brunette throwing a few glances at Brittany's direction, she just had to roll her eyes.

Amber pulled Santana a little closer to her, completely surprising the brunette.

"Brittany wants me to be nice to you." Amber said.

Santana arched an eyebrow.

"So this is you being nice?"

"Stop trying to be cute." Amber growled.

Santana chuckled.

"Oh, you think I'm cute?"

"I'll pretend that I don't want to punch you right now."

Santana fell silent for a moment for speaking again.

"I'm sorry, Amber."

"What?"

"If I was an asshole to you, I'm really sorry."

"If?"

"Okay, fine, I was a complete ass."

"What happened, did you bump your head or something?"

Santana did not respond. She just threw another look at Brittany's direction which Amber totally caught.

"Seriously, what happened to you?"

"Nothing."

"I didn't take you were the type who extends apologies to your one-night stands. Is there even such type?"

"I didn't realize how stupid I was being until now."

Amber curiously studied Santana's face. There was something different about her. She didn't seem to be the same player she met years ago. The apology was still a shock. If she was going to be honest with herself, she wasn't sure why she disliked the brunette so much after what happened between them. Back then, she wasn't expecting more. She knew who Santana was and she definitely was to blame partly for falling for Santana's pick up lines.

Something had changed.

Amber smiled.

Santana smiled back.

"Who is it?"

"Huh?" Santana looked confused.

"Who turned you into this romantic sap?"

Santana laughed.

"There's someone, isn't there?"

Santana shrugged.

"Do I know her?"

Santana just smiled, her eyes flitting over Brittany's direction again and they caught each other's eyes.

"What does she do?"

"Can't say."

"You're not even going to give me that?"

"Let's just say that she's amazing and beautiful. Kind of like an angel; my guardian angel."

Amber couldn't help but snort.

"What?"

"What?"

"What's so funny?"

"It's just I never thought I'd see the day that you'd talk about a girl like this." Amber pulled away from Santana.

"A girl who belongs to someone else." Santana muttered under her breath.

"She's an idiot if she doesn't see just how awesome you are. Except maybe for the player part." Amber finished before walking away with a grin. "Thanks for the dance."

Santana found Brittany by the bar still, sipping on a glass of cocktail. They exchanges smiles. Santana ordered the same drink as Brittany's as she stood next to her bestfriend.

"Where's Amber?" Brittany asked.

"No idea."

"She didn't try to get even with you, did she?" Brittany sounded worried.

"She was quite nice, actually. Your fault."

Brittany couldn't help the laughter. It was music to Santana's ears.

"Sorry. My bad."

"What were you guys talking about?"

"Hmm?" Brittany hummed as she sipped from her glass.

"You were talking when I arrived."

"Wouldn't you wanna know?" Brittany playfully said.

Santana looked alarmed.

"Were you talking about me?"

"Maybe."

"What did she say?"

"Why does it matter?" Brittany challenged.

"Was it bad?"

"Is that what you're concerned about?"

"Well, I want to at least defend myself if she did say something bad about me."

Brittany laughed again at seeing Santana worrying about what Amber could have said. She knew better than to be scared of what Amber would say. Brittany wouldn't believe them anyway.

"She might have mentioned how good of a kisser you are." Brittany teased.

Santana blushed.

Fortunately, it was visible as they stood inside the dark club.

"She didn't say that."

"So are you saying you're not?"

"What?"

"You're not a good kisser?"

"What? Of course I am."

"So you are, then?" Brittany was enjoying teasing Santana far too much. You'd think they were flirting.

Well, they had always been flirting. Only them didn't notice.

Santana huffed. If Brittany could play this game, she could too.

"You didn't know?" Santana raised a questioning eyebrow at her bestfriend.

"Never tried it before."

"Well, it's never too late." Santana nudged Brittany's shoulder with her own.

This time, it was Brittany who blushed.

"I'd never tell Ashley. I swear."

"Nice try."

Santana laughed. They fell in a comfortable silence, with both of them enjoying their drinks. Santana found herself looking at Brittany's right profile every now and then. She wasn't sure if the blonde noticed, but if Brittany did she didn't say anything about it.

"Hey, gorgeous."

The voice on Santana's right made both bestfriends look up. Santana was intrigued as she found a pretty girl who was obviously into her, while Brittany just found herself annoyed.

"Can I buy you a drink?" The girl smiled sexily at Santana.

Santana felt Brittany's eyes drilling a hole on the side of her face.

She cleared her throat.

"Um, I still have a drink." Santana politely declined.

But the girl wasn't about to give up.

"How about a dance?" She was relentless.

Brittany rolled her eyes.

Santana turned to see Brittany staring at her.

Then she remembered why she was in L.A. in the first place. She was there to be the maid of honor at her bestfriend's wedding. She still hadn't told Brittany that she was in love with her, but would that even make a difference? Would that be enough to stop her from marrying Ashley?

That probably was just wishful thinking.

So while she was there being a masochist, maybe she could reward herself and enjoy a little bit.

Santana turned her head back at the pretty woman and smiled.

"I won't be long, Britt." Santana then followed the girl to the dance floor.

Brittany just huffed and crossed her arms. She grabbed Santana's drink from the bar and took swigs until it was empty. She ordered another glass and when she saw Santana being literally groped by relentless girl on the dance floor, she felt like she was going to puke.

She ran to the ladies room.

x - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - x

Brittany was up early the next morning. She never really got enough sleep. She and her family and friends were housed at a hotel where the wedding would be held. Ashley's family would be arriving tonight while Ashley would be arriving the next night.

She found Marley having breakfast at the hotel restaurant. Brittany joined her.

"Hey." Brittany greeted.

"Hey."

Marley smiled at her cousin but then noticed the bags under Brittany's eyes.

"You okay?" Marley prodded as she noticed the blonde playing with her scrambled eggs.

"Hmm?" Brittany looked up.

"How was your sleep?"

"It's okay."

Marley didn't believe her one bit because it was just so obvious.

"Missing Ashley?"

"What?"

"You've got bags under your eyes. Have you been thinking about her?"

"Yeah."

It was a lie.

Brittany immediately felt guilty because all she was thinking about was Santana and that girl from last night. She had seen her bestfriend with different women before but seeing her last night and that girl was just-

Irritating.

Somehow, she was aware of the cause of irritation but she hadn't felt that way since a very long time. She had long dealt with the fact that Santana was a player and that was just her thing, and they were bestfriends and-

"—her girlfriend?"

"What?" Brittany completely lost track of their conversation.

"That girl Santana was dancing with last night, is that her girlfriend? Because Amber was talking about how strange it was to hear Santana being in love and-"

"That's not her girlfriend." Brittany defended a little harshly, surprising Marley.

Marley threw a weird look at Brittany.

"She says she'd found 'the one' but I don't know. I think Santana's just playing around." Brittany said.

"Why would you say that?"

"Because she was flirting a little too much last night; with Amber, and then that relentless girl who wouldn't take no for an answer." Brittany remembered rejoining her cousins and friends after almost vomiting at the ladies room, only to find relentless girl gone and Santana back to dancing with Amber.

"So you were spying on her?" Marley narrowed her eyes at the blonde.

"What? No!"

"Britt, they were just having fun."

"Not too much fun, I hope." The blonde mumbled.

Marley gave the blonde another weird look.

"I think your bestfriend is a natural flirt. Doesn't mean she meant anything by it. You're just not used to seeing your bestfriend having actual feelings for someone. And would that be so bad if she's finally found her match? If anything, you should be supportive of her, like she is of you."

That kind of stung.

Santana being in love was a concept so foreign to Brittany, it was hard to grasp.

And the urge to get to know who the lucky girl is was gnawing at her.

She wanted to know.

She needed to know.

Brittany was scared to know.

"Santana and Amber were just being civil, believe me. You should just be happy that Amber isn't trying to kill your maid of honor."

"Where are they anyway?"

"Getting coffee at Starbucks. They said hotel food is too fancy for them, they just wanted something normal."

"Both of them?"

Marley looked confused.

"Amber and Santana? Uh, yeah."

Then Brittany just bolted.

x - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - x

"Thanks for inviting me. I've been craving for coffee since last night." Santana joined Amber on the table, with both their coffees.

"I only invited you because Marley's kind of boring and Brittany is not that interesting. Besides, there's something that I want to ask you."

"Okay, shoot." Santana took a bite of her cinnamon roll.

"How long have you been in love with my cousin?"

The question was asked right when Santana was swallowing that she started choking. Amber didn't even do anything to help her. She just watched there as Santana fought for her life.

Santana managed to throw her a glare.

Amber rolled her eyes, then hit Santana on her back.

That really hurt.

Fortunately, Santana managed to spit out what choked her.

When she looked back at Amber, the blonde was still looking expectant.

It took a while before she found her voice again.

"What?"

"Don't 'what' me. I'm not stupid."

"I don't know what you're talking about." Santana snatched the glass of water in front of her and gulped as much as she could.

Amber just crossed her arms and legs and waited for Santana to confess.

Santana stared at Brittany's cousin.

Amber just stared back.

Santana was the first to look away. Then she let out a deep sigh.

"What is it to you, Amber?"

"Are you here to ruin her wedding?"

Santana's shoulders deflated.

"No. That was the original plan, but I can't. I can't ruin the most important day of Brittany's life. I'd never be able to forgive myself."

Santana stared at her coffee. It was long before Amber spoke.

"Bummer."

"What?"

"It would have been quite a wedding if you come running in the middle of it and declare your love for Brittany. It would be like a soap opera. I'm a sucker for dramas." Amber grinned.

Santana chuckled.

"She doesn't know?" Amber asked.

"No."

Amber studied Santana's somber face.

She felt sympathy.

Then a movement in her peripheral vision got her curious and when she turned, Amber saw a glimpse of blonde. There was a mischievous twinkle in her eye.

"Your karma's here."

Santana looked confused.

"Hey Britt!" Amber called out.

Santana's eyes widened and they searched for her bestfriend. She heard the sound of clashing first before she found Brittany standing by the entrance with coffee spilled all over her coat. The brunette was fast on her heels, to Brittany's rescue.

Amber watched in amusement.

"Britt, are you okay?" Santana stood by Brittany with tissues in her hand, helping her dry off the coffee stain in her coat.

Brittany was blushing profusely but Santana was too busy cleaning her up to notice. Then she found her cousin grinning at them.

"Uh, I'm okay."

"I didn't know you were here."

"I was surprised to see you guys here too." Brittany said lamely. Of course Brittany tried to google the nearest Starbucks to spy on her bestfriend and cousin, but Amber had sharp observation skills and before she could dash outside, the other blonde had already caught her.

She wasn't even sure why she was spying on them. If anyone found out, there would surely be a lot of questions.

This wedding thingy was taking a toll on her.

"Come with me." Santana instinctively grabbed Brittany's hand and led her to their table.

Amber's eyes flit down to the intertwined hands, causing Brittany to turn even redder. Just as Brittany took the seat beside Santana, Amber got up.

"Oh, look at the time. I forgot I have to meet someone in ten. See you guys around." Amber then winked at Santana, making sure that Brittany caught it.

As soon as Amber was gone, Brittany spoke.

"What was that about?"

"Huh?" Santana was busy taking off her own coat to notice what Brittany was asking about.

"Nothing."

"Take off your coat and wear mine."

"But you'd get cold."

"It's fine. You can't get sick on your wedding day. I'm just your maid of honor. You're indispensable. I'm not." That sort of felt like a punch on Santana's stomach. But she had to learn how to deal with it.

She had to.

"So, you're hanging out with Amber now?" Brittany curiously asked.

"We don't have much of a choice." Santana joked.

"Thanks for being here for me, San."

"Always." Santana smiled, then leaned in and placed a kiss on the side of Brittany's forehead.

x - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - x

Quinn wanted to take time off and asked Santana if she could borrow her father's house at the Hamptons for the weekend. Santana only agreed if she and their other friends could tag along. Not having any say on the matter, Quinn did not object. She desperately needed to get away for a while.

Santana also invited Brittany.

Barely twenty-four hours later, everyone was bored and they found themselves divided into two teams. The first time was composed of Brittany, Quinn and Sugar, while the second team had Santana, Rachel and Mercedes.

As lame as it sounded, their first game to entertain themselves was arm-wrestling.

"Fuck." Quinn muttered under her breath. She was athletic and definitely strong but she was expecting this much strength from Santana.

"Give up, Fabray." Santana taunted.

"Never."

A few more seconds and no one was giving up. Both Santana and Quinn were groaning and not in a pleasant way. The lawyer was becoming impatient.

"Brittany, distract her!" Quinn screamed.

"You can't do that." Santana countered.

"We didn't really set the rules, so I say we can. Come on Brittany! We don't want to lose! We're talking about our pride here!" Sugar defended as she glared at Santana who just smugly grinned at them.

"What exactly am I supposed to do?" Brittany slightly panicked.

"Fine, go ahead. It's not like anything can distract me. I have very good concentration skills." Santana teased.

"We'll see... Do something, Brittany!" Quinn now growled at her teammate.

"I'm not really sure what to do here. Tell me!"

"Figure it out!"

"Give up, you lose. Don't make this harder for you, losers, you-"

Santana was effectively interrupted as Brittany leaned down and placed a lingering kiss on the side of her lips.

Then she lost.

Quinn jumped from her seat, laughing her ass off.

"Woo! We won!" Quinn high-fived with Sugar and then with Brittany who was blushing at what she just did.

Santana felt a pinch on her right ear. It probably was Mercedes, but she was still too woozy post-kiss that she barely noticed.

"Damn it, Lopez. It's just a girl!" Mercedes whined.

"Let's think of a game where we can beat them." Rachel whispered at Mercedes.

"As it turns out, your concentration skill has one weakness." Quinn poked fun at Santana.

The rest of the day was a blur for Santana.

"You did not win that game. You cheated." Santana laughed as she reminisced with Brittany.

"There were no rules!" Brittany laughed with her.

"What? So you thought you could do just about anything?"

"Don't be such a sore loser. It's not my fault that you're easily distracted by girls."

"I'm not easily distracted by girls. I'm easily distracted by you." Santana said before she could stop herself.

Brittany fell quiet for a moment before getting back at Santana.

"I never heard you complain. You enjoyed that far too much."

"Not as much as you enjoyed it when you made me ride that horse so you could be close to me."

"I did no such thing!"

"Santana, stop squirming like a little girl or we'd both fall off and break our necks." Brittany chastised as she felt her bestfriend squirming behind her. She and Santana were left when Rachel decided she wanted to explore the Hamptons and Quinn joined with her camera. Sugar and Mercedes got hungry and went in search of a restaurant that would offer them with something new.

They were mounted on a horse and Brittany was at the helm, with Santana sitting behind her, arms wrapped around Brittany's waist tightly.

"I am a little girl!"

"Just hold on tight and I'll keep you safe." Brittany tapped on Santana's arms.

Santana held on a little more tightly.

"Are you sure?" Santana's voice got muffled as her face was already buried on the blonde's back.

Brittany couldn't help but smile at the adorableness. It wasn't everyday that you'd see Santana Lopez acting like a child.

"Do you trust me?"

"Of course I do but not this freaking enormous horse! Where did you even get him?!"

"Your cute neighbor was kind enough to let me borrow him."

"Ugh. I don't have a cute neighbor and I'm pretty sure it's illegal to go around the neighborhood on a horse."

"We'll just get ourselves out of trouble, just in case." Brittany grinned and nudged the horse with her right feet. When it started moving, she heard Santana let out a little squeal.

"If I don't know any better, I'd say you're just trying to get close to me. Britt, you can touch me anytime you want, just let me get off!"

Brittany laughed.

"Wanky." Brittany mimicked Santana's usual expression.

It was only then that Santana realized how she had sounded.

She buried her face on Brittany's back even deeper.

"Please, I didn't have to use any ruse if I wanted to get close to you. You were such a wimp. I just wanted to help you conquer your fears."

"I'm not a wimp." Santana crossed her arms indignantly.

That only caused Brittany to laugh harder.

"Why do you always make fun of me?"

"I'm not making fun of you. It's just… I can't help it. You look really cute right now." Brittany wanted to reach out and just pinch Santana's chubby cheeks.

"Cute?" If Santana wanted compliment, that certainly wasn't to be called as 'cute'. But it's Brittany. She could call her whatever she wants.

"Yeah, cute."

"Whatever." Santana pretended to hate it, but Brittany knew her all too well.

Brittany reached for Santana's cinnamon roll and took a bite.

She had to admit, she missed eating Santana's food.

"I'd miss having those moments with you." Santana spoke softly.

"You make it sound like we're never having them again. I'm not dying, San."

"Well, we'd be far away from each other and you'd be busy with your new life."

"I'll always have time for you. And we won't be far away."

"Aren't you moving here?" Santana just assumed that Brittany's changing zip codes as soon as she got married. What's the point of getting married if you couldn't be with your spouse?

Curiously, Brittany averted her eyes.

"I haven't decided yet." The blonde casually stated.

Santana looked surprised.

"You haven't discussed this with Ashley?"

"Well, it's clear what she wants. She wants me to move here."

"And what do you want, Britt?" Santana's heartbeat became frantic as she asked that question, deep inside hoping that she'd want to stay in New York.

"I don't know." Brittany sighed. "You'd think I thought about it when I accepted her proposal."

Santana forced a smile. The uncertainty of Brittany's presence in her life was killing her.

"My life is in New York. My family and friends are there. You're there." Brittany's voice slight broke at the last sentence.

"Well, you're not marrying me, and Ashley's going to be here, so…" Santana tried to lighten up their conversation, but she felt her heart break a little at what she said.

She wanted to cry.

Santana would have cried if Brittany wasn't in front of her.

And then she remembered her father's words.

She had to tell Britt.

"Britt, there's something that I…" Santana was at a loss for words when her eyes locked with her bestfriend's.

"San?"

"Huh?"

"What were you trying to tell me?"

"I…" Santana swallowed. She wanted to shout her feelings for Brittany for the rest of the world to hear. But she'd never really done it before, and she had no idea how to do it. Certainly doing it at Starbucks wasn't romantic.

Brittany was right.

She was a wimp.

Quinn was going to hit her in the head and her abuela would surely hit her with a chair should the story of her cowardice reach their ears.

"I think we should go back to the hotel."

Brittany seemed surprised that they were leaving all of a sudden, but did not oppose. What surprised her more was when Santana got up from her seat and went to the door ahead of her, without waiting for her, and without holding her hand.

They used to always hold each other's hands.

Her heart broke at the thought of not being able to hold Santana's hand again.

x - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - x

Brittany found her mom in her room at the hotel, smiling while staring at a picture.

She didn't have to look over to see whose picture it was.

"I wish dad was here." Brittany sat beside her mother and took her dad's picture. She couldn't help but smile as well upon seeing the grinning image of her late father.

"Me too, honey. He would have been really happy."

"I know, mom."

"You know what's weird though?"

"What?" Brittany turned a curious look at the older Pierce.

"He always thought that it would be a better choice for you to marry a man, not that he's against any of your relationships with your ex-girlfriends, you know how much he loved you but…"

"But…?"

"He always thought you'd marry Santana."

Brittany chuckled. At the same time, she felt something, like a weight just became heavier in her chest. Tears formed in her eyes and thank god her mother wasn't looking or else she'd wonder why she was on the verge of crying. She cleared her throat to at least mask the breaking of her voice.

"Really?"

"Yes, really."

Brittany couldn't help but smile.

Then she realized she shouldn't even be smiling about marrying Santana when she was actually marrying Ashley.

But she knew what was happening.

Some repressed feelings were starting to boil over and she wasn't sure why and why now. She thought they were long gone. She'd spent years trying to push them away because she hated the idea of just being another notch on Santana's bedpost.

These repressed feelings were causing a stir in both her mind and heart and Brittany was afraid; afraid that deep inside she'd realize that she was making the biggest mistake of her life.

x - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - x

"Give me some good news, Santana." Quinn said on the phone as she answered.

"What am I doing?" Santana heard footsteps before Quinn got back to her.

"I didn't come out of the court room just so I could hear you prove to me that you're a wuss, just as I suspected all along."

"Brittany's happy with Ashley. And Ashley's a nice person. She's from a good family."

"So what, are you telling me that you're letting her go now without a fight?"

"I can't fight. I don't have the right to fight." Tears streamed from Santana's eyes. She'd been holding them since they were at Starbucks, half-accepting that her feelings for her bestfriend was already a lost cause.

"Well, you don't know that, do you?"

Quinn had the urge to take a flight and get to Santana as soon as hearing her friend sob on the other line but her hands were tied. She had too much on her schedule, same reason why she wouldn't be able to make it at Brittany's wedding.

"The wedding is in two days, Santana. Just tell her. It's now or never.

x - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - x

After the fancy dinner with the Hamiltons, everybody hung out at the hotel bar. It was cozy and quiet and everyone was enjoying the change of venue.

Brittany was sitting alone by the bar, watching Santana who was talking with Amber, again, at a distance, when Marley decided to join her.

"Are you nervous?"

Brittany let out a short laugh.

"It's normal to be nervous, right?"

"This is a life-changing decision. Of course it's normal to be nervous." Marley followed Brittany's gaze. She saw Santana who threw a wink at their direction.

They both laughed.

"Your bestfriend is such a flirt."

"That's Santana." Brittany smiled rather somberly.

The blonde cleared her throat.

"I still haven't written my vows."

"But you do have them in your head, right?" Marley looked expectantly at her cousin, who just avoided her gaze. "Seriously?"

"But I don't know what to say."

"Brittany, your wedding is in less than forty-eight hours!" Needless to say, Marley was horrified.

"I know! I just… I don't know." Brittany sighed.

"Didn't you have that conversation with the minister already?"

"Yes."

"And you didn't learn anything?"

"I tried to get on with it but I just failed every damn time. It doesn't have to be long, right?"

"No, but it does have to mean something."

"Help me." Brittany her irresistible pout to convince her cousin.

Marley rolled her eyes.

"I haven't been married before, but I think you should say something about Ashley. I mean, you're getting married to her."

"Okay."

"Like, was it love at first sight?" Marley wondered, because she'd never heard the whole Brittany-Ashley story.

"Uhm, it was a whirlwind romance for sure, but, it's complicated."

Marley gave her a confused look.

"But you love her?"

"What kind of question is that?" Brittany looked a bit offended.

"Brittany, you're supposed to answer 'yes'!"

"Marley, I only need help with the vows. I don't need you analyzing my feelings for Ashley."

The brunette noticed Brittany switching to defensive mode.

"But you have to admit, this was all a little too fast. What is it with her, Britt?"

"She's beautiful."

"You can say that in your vows, but you have to say something a little deeper than that. What else do you love about her?"

Brittany got lost in thought.

But even after a while she remained thinking silently.

"Surely you could think of something." Marley said. "Say something personal. Don't think too hard. Like, my boyfriend's name is Jake and I love his eyes."

Brittany still didn't say anything.

"Okay, let's take the pressure off. Let's try someone else. Like your bestfriend."

"What?" Brittany squeaked.

"Santana. What do you love about her?"

"I don't… uh…"

"I'm making this simpler for you. If you could think of something you love about your bestfriend, then you could do this with your fiancée. Tell me, what do you love about Santana?"

Brittany thought of the things that she 'love' about Santana. It didn't take her long. She just had to smile as thoughts of her came rushing into her head.

"Her laugh. I love the way she laughs. And her dimples are adorable. And she's really cute, especially when she's wearing those black rimmed glasses of hers. Her eyesight is terrible. Her voice, it's so thick and velvety and sexy-" Brittany had her eyes focused on Santana's direction to notice Marley giving her a suspicious look.

"She's just… incredible."

"And Ashley?"

"Huh?"

Marley's eyes narrowed at her cousin.

"Ashley, your fiancée, what can you say about her?"

Brittany closed her eyes, then took a deep breath.

"Every moment I spend with her is exciting. She's very caring, and the perfect gentlewoman…" Brittany trailed off, trying hard to think of something more, but was too embarrassed to admit that she couldn't come up with anything. Her mind went to how Ashley came running after her at the airport and proposed in front of everyone. "Come on Marley, who wouldn't fall for a grand romantic gesture like that? I thought that only happens in movies."

Marley didn't look impressed.

"Britt, be honest with me. Did you fall for the gesture, or the girl who made it?"

x - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - x

A day before the wedding, during breakfast, Amber suggested that Brittany try her gown.

"Isn't it bad luck or something?" Brittany frowned.

"The only bad luck would be to see yourself in your wedding pictures wearing a gown that doesn't fit." Amber said, looking incredulously at Brittany.

"What a horror." Marley said sarcastically.

Santana snorted.

"Don't you agree, Santana?"

"What?" Santana squeaked. She saw the pointed look Amber was giving her.

"If there are some repairs to be made, there's still time. So why don't you help Brittany try on her gown and we'll check in with you guys later?" Amber threw a sickeningly sweet smile that generated a horrified look from Santana and a glare from Brittany.

Marley just seemed confused.

Santana cleared her throat.

"Uhm, if you want to, I'd come with you, Britt." Santana said.

Brittany had a hard time turning her glare away from Amber who still was smiling at Santana.

"Fine." Brittany got up from the chair and headed to the dressing room with Santana trailing behind her.

x - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - x

Santana's jaw hit the floor as Brittany came out in her Zac Posen wedding gown.

Brittany stood awkwardly as she waited for her bestfriend's comment.

That didn't seem like they were coming anytime soon.

"San?"

Santana's eyes were glued at Brittany: at her face, her shoulders, her cleavage, her abs-

"San!"

That literally caused the brunette to jump from her seat.

"What?"

"What do you think?"

"What do I think? Like I always think. That you're the most beautiful woman in the world, Brittany Susan Pierce."

Brittany felt her cheeks get warm.

"Stop flirting right now and just tell me the truth."

"That's the truth. Britt, you look… wow." Santana smiled.

"You're not lying?"

"I would never lie to you, Britt."

Brittany smiled.

"Hey, I need your help with something."

"Sure."

"I want you to pretend like you're the one marrying me."

"Excuse me?"

"Act like we're exchanging vows. Tell me something. You know, something that you'd tell someone you love."

"Why?"

"Because I don't know what to do with my vow."

Santana didn't seem welcome to the idea.

Until Brittany gave her that killer pout.

Shit.

"Come on, San. Practice with me."

I'm doomed.

"Fine."

"Yeah?" Brittany grinned.

"Yeah."

"Okay. Come closer then, silly." Brittany grabbed Santana's left hand and pulled her too fast, the brunette almost slammed into her.

Santana felt like air was knocked out of her as her senses were assaulted by Brittany's scent.

She looked up to curious blue eyes.

"San."

"Huh?"

"Anytime now."

"Oh, right."

Santana then closed her eyes, let out a deep breath, and reached for both Brittany's hands.

There was a tingly feeling that traveled through her arms.

It was time.

This was the time.

When she opened her eyes again, she found blue ones trained on her still.

"Your eyes; they are the first that attracted me to you. Do you remember when we first met and you sprayed that perfume on my eyes?"

Brittany chuckled.

"Your eyes are beautiful."

Brittany playfully shove Santana's shoulder. The brunette held the blonde's hand, so she'd really listen. Brittany halted her movements.

"I'm serious. I've never seen eyes so beautiful. And as early as that day, I felt a pull. I thought it was just your tempting lips because I wanted to kiss you so bad. It took me years to realize that it's more than that. That you meant something more to me than just a lucky coincidence."

It felt all too real, that Brittany was caught off-guard.

"San…"

"No. Britt, listen to me, please. I may not have the chance to say this ever again." Santana had never sounded so small in her life. But she had to get it out.

She had to tell Brittany.

Brittany searched her eyes.

"I'm in love with you."

Brittany froze.

Tears fell freely from Santana's eyes.

"I love you, Britt. I love you more than anything or anyone else in this world."

Brittany didn't move, nor did she say anything. Santana slowly leaned in, closer and closer, until their lips were barely centimeters apart. She paused, giving the blonde a chance to pull back.

Brittany didn't.

So Santana went for it. And when their lips finally connected, Santana felt butterflies and fireworks. Her insides turned into mush as she felt her bestfriend respond to the kiss.

Brittany was actually kissing her back.

And Santana was elated and scared and confused all at the same time.

Then a phone started ringing and just like that the moment was gone.

Suddenly Brittany was arms away from her and Santana felt cold. She could hear Brittany talking to someone on the phone. When the blonde faced her again, her reaction to the kiss was unreadable.

"Ashley will be back tonight." Brittany breathed silently. There was a look of pain on her face before it was gone in a matter of seconds.

They stared momentarily at each other before Brittany went back to the changing room.

Santana let out the breath she'd been holding, and the tears that stopped just came flowing out again.

x - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - x

Santana was noticeably missing from dinner. She told Amber that she wasn't feeling well but the blonde didn't buy it one bit. Amber called her out on her bullshit and made her admit that it was because of Ashley that she was skipping dinner.

She didn't want to watch Brittany sitting next to someone else during dinner.

Santana just couldn't take that.

Brittany wondered.

So at midnight, when Ashley went back to her own room (the Hamiltons were traditional and insisted on keeping Ashley and Brittany on different rooms before the wedding), Brittany tiptoed to Santana's room.

When Santana opened the door, she ran.

Santana ran after her.

Brittany locked herself inside, while Santana kept knocking on the other side.

"Open the door, Britt."

"No."

"Why did you go to my room,?"

"Go away, Santana."

"There's a reason, I know there is." Santana sounded desperate.

Brittany's heart ached. She had never heard her bestfriend sound like that, ever.

"I wanted to talk about the kiss." Brittany softly replied.

That thought brought a sad smile on Santana's face.

"It was amazing."

"No."

"No?" Santana was confused.

"I mean… San…"

Brittany paused and Santana just let her gather her thoughts.

"All those years, San…"

"I know, I know…"

"Why now?"

"I'm an idiot."

"You are."

"Britt, open the door." Santana pleaded.

"No."

"Please."

"I can't."

Santana could hear Brittany sobbing on the other side.

"San, I'm getting married tomorrow."

The brunette never imagined that words could hurt this much.

She felt like her heart just literally dropped on the floor, like it was bleeding.

She didn't bother to wipe the tears that rolled down to her cheeks.

"I can't do this."

"What?" Brittany squeaked.

"I'm sorry Britt, but I can't watch you get married tomorrow."

Santana willed the tears to stop, but they didn't.

"I can't give you away. I'm sorry." Santana then ran back to her hotel room, never looking back.

The next morning, Santana was gone.

x - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - x

Santana's flight back to New York that she earlier booked was supposed to be the next day, but because of what happened with Brittany, she was stuck in the airport in the early morning of Brittany's wedding day, as a chance passenger. She was tempted to try the other airlines, but she couldn't seem to move from her seat. She had no desire to move. Truthfully, she had no desire to do anything else. Today, Brittany was to be wed to someone else, and life just lost its meaning. A robber could steal her purse, and she wouldn't even care.

She hadn't realized how bad she had it for Brittany until now.

She thought of breakfasts at Breadstix without Brittany.

She thought of untouched cheesecakes because Brittany wouldn't be there to steal bites from her.

She thought of days away from Brittany.

She felt like she was going to go crazy.

Then she remembered their kiss. She remembered how Brittany kissed her back. There was no doubt that her bestfriend wanted her at some extent because there was no way that that kiss could be considered platonic.

Then she realized that while her feelings were thrown out in the open, Brittany's feelings remained a mystery.

She needed to know.

Santana needed to confront her.

Her eyes flickered at her watch and figured the wedding was just about to start. She ran and hailed a cab.

The love of her life was getting married to someone else, and it hurts. It hurts too much. But she wasn't about to let her go without knowing why she kissed back.

The cab could only drop her at the hotel and Santana had to make a run to the gardens where Brittany was to get married and before she could scream 'stop', she was rendered mute.

The gardens were already empty.

x - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - x

Santana did not bother to check the reception because that would just confirm that she was too late and that Brittany was now a Hamilton.

Her whole flight back to New York was spent crying.

When she was dropped off in front of her apartment building, she found thirty-four missed calls from Quinn, Sugar, Mercedes, Tina, and one from Brittany.

Seeing Brittany's name in her phone made her heart flutter a bit.

"Gosh, I am hopeless." Santana muttered to herself as she placed her phone back into the pocket of her jacket and pulled her traveling bag to the steps, only to be stopped.

"I wouldn't totally disagree."

Santana's eyes shot up to meet crystal blue ones.

"Fuck."

Brittany raised an eyebrow at her.

"I was expecting that you'd say something a little more romantic?"

Santana's eyes widened.

"I am crazy."

"What?" Brittany looked confused.

"I was just thinking on the plane of the days ahead, that I wouldn't be with you, of how crazy it would make me and here I am, less than a day and I'm already having hallucinations of you." Santana started pacing back and forth.

Brittany wasn't sure whether to be amused or concerned.

"You think I'm a hallucination?"

"What else? You just got married and probably having some fun time with your new family and your new wife. You couldn't be here wearing those jeans that makes your ass look so good."

Brittany stifled a laugh.

"Oh my god, I'm talking to myself."

Brittany rolled her eyes then got up from the steps and tickled Santana on the side of her stomach.

Santana jumped almost two feet in the air.

"What the…?!"

"I'm not a hallucination. Stop acting like you're crazy because I'm starting to believe it."

"You're… you're really here. How did you get here?" Santana wondered, because she had waited hours as chance passenger and she was quite sure Brittany hadn't booked a flight to New York for today.

"I bought a passenger's ticket and gave him an extra $500 to convince him."

"Genius. Why didn't I think of that?"

"Didn't you say it yourself? It's because you're an idiot. What took you so long?" Brittany crossed her arms.

Santana had to clear her throat that suddenly went dry because annoyed Brittany was kind of hot.

"I uh, took the cab and there was-"

"No. What took you so long to figure things out? Why wait when I'm about to marry someone else?"

"Oh."

"Oh? Is that all you can say? Because I didn't break off my wedding just so I could hear you say 'oh', Santana Lopez."

Santana's jaw dropped.

"You're not married?"

"How can I after you said all those things to me?"

Santana searched Brittany's eyes, and then smiled.

"I didn't know what I was feeling until I was forced to confront them at the threat of losing you. You are the constant girl in my life, Britt. You're the only one that keeps my feet on the ground. I thought you're always going to be there and I never wanted to lose you."

"You'd never lose me."

"I know that. But finding out that you're getting married and Ashley was the lucky one who'd be able to call you hers, I got scared."

There was a pause.

"I got hurt. And I've never been hurt like that before. I felt like my heart was being ripped off my chest, and, gosh, I hated myself for not realizing what I had in front of me before."

"I didn't mean to hurt you."

"I know that."

Santana reached for Brittany's hands and held them in hers.

"Remember when you were in L.A. and I called you at dawn when I can't sleep?"

"Yeah."

"I missed you too terribly. I don't think I could go the rest of my life without seeing you or hearing your voice everyday. I'd go crazy. You'd have to visit me in a mental facility somewhere. And you'd probably feel guilty for causing it. But you're my bestfriend, and in advance, I want you to know that I would never blame you for-"

Brittany cuts off her rambling by kissing her.

Santana smiled into the kiss and did not hesitate to kiss back.

The satisfied moan from Brittany made Santana shiver.

"You're never gonna go crazy."

"I'm crazy for you." Santana grinned.

Brittany laughed.

"That's the lamest I've heard you."

"It's true though."

"San?"

"Hmm?"

"I'm in love with you too."

The smile on Santana's face was so wide, it almost reached her ears.

Santana placed one hand on the nape of Brittany's neck so she could pull her down for another kiss. They'd been making out for a few minutes and if it wasn't for the need for air, they wouldn't have pulled away. They stood outside Santana's apartment building, with the brunette's arms around Brittany's neck, while Brittany's arms were wrapped around Santana's back.

"Why didn't you tell me before Ashley came into the picture?" Santana asked curiously.

"Hmm?"

"That you love me."

"You weren't ready for something serious. And if there's anything that I want with you, it is serious."

Santana looked up and fluttered her eyes at the blonde.

"I want something serious with you too."

"Good." Brittany smiled and placed a peck on Santana's lips.

"I love you, Britt." Santana smiled at the sound of those words in her lips. She'd never get tired of saying those words.

"I love you too, San." Brittany's eyes flickered towards Santana's traveling bag that lay forgotten on the pavement. "So what do you want to do now?"

Santana let out a contented sigh as her eyes locked on Brittany's lips.

"I just want to love you." She then grabbed Brittany's hand and her bag towards the door of her building but before she opened the door, she turned back to her bestfriend turned girlfriend.

"Britt?"

"Yeah?"

"Someday, I'm going to ask you to marry me." Santana grinned.

With a slight blush, Brittany grinned back.

"Someday, I'm going to say yes."

Santana's heart fluttered at that. So she leaned down and pecked Brittany's lips again.

Seven years ago, Santana got in bed with the wrong girl.

She turned out to be the right one.

THE END