AN: Happy Valentine's Day!
Those two simple little words written largely on the whiteboard told Rachel everything she needed to know about the following week; it would suck. She should have expected Mr. Schue's predictability as Valentine's Day was later on in the week. Although she was hoping that he'd show some tact considering that her most recent break up with Finn had only occurred a few weeks ago and was therefore still fresh in everyone's minds.
Rachel saw her instructor speak but opt to block him out as he went on with his typical ramblings. She didn't even really need to listen to the assignment he would hand out for the week, as mentioned before the words on the whiteboard had already been a clear indication.
It was a rare occasion when Rachel Berry wouldn't want to participate in Glee Club but today, and the rest of the week, would be one of those occasions. She barely registered that Mr. Schue had ceased speaking and had waved them off to begin working. Rachel turned in her seat and looked up upon the risers.
Most of them were already paired up, whether they were doing anything productive or not was irrelevant at the moment. Aside from herself, Finn, Noah, and Quinn, they all had someone special or were pursuing someone. They'd all have someone to sing to and many would have someone sing to them.
Rachel couldn't even remember the last time someone had serenaded her. She ran through her memories each instance only to have her heart sink when she realized that, apart from duets, Finn had only ever sung to her once. Adding the fact that she had, at the time, been involved with Jesse could only sour said memory.
Needless to say, her current revelation could only dampen her mood. In her seat she sat, unmoving, the idle chattering in the background fading into nothingness as she got lost in her thoughts. As extraordinary as Rachel knew she was, she was still just a girl and what girl wouldn't want a romantic gesture for Valentine's Day?
Perhaps this was the price to pay for her impending Broadway stardom. If so, then it would be an unfair one. Yes, Rachel's dreams were the most important thing to her, but what were they if she didn't have anyone to share them with. Sure, she'd have her dads and her friends, specifically Kurt, whom she hoped she'd one day share the stage with and Rachel was especially grateful for that.
But to have someone to share her life with, to marry, and start a family with…
"Hey, you okay?" Rachel's head snapped to the side. Standing beside her was Quinn Fabray, a slightly worried expression on her face. "You've been staring off into space for most of Glee and you didn't even notice that Mr. Schue dismissed us." Rachel blinked and began scanning the room. True to the blonde's words the entire was empty save for the two of them.
"I'm just distracted is all," Rachel said, straightening out her skirt as she got up from her chair. She gathered her belongings and headed for the door, Quinn falling in step beside her.
"Yeah, about Valentine's?" Quinn asked softly, her tone showing only concern and no intent to prod the subject. Rachel nodded idly, a faint smile creeping onto her lips. At least someone had noticed. "You shouldn't worry, I'm sure you'll have a great Valentine's."
"Quinn, I'm single," Rachel reminded her friend. "And something I've learned over the years is that Valentine's Day isn't very friendly towards single people," she said, offering Quinn the best smile she could muster when she noticed her sad expression. "Don't worry about me Quinn, I'll be okay."
"Are you sure?" Quinn asked worriedly.
"Yes, but a bit of company wouldn't hurt."
"Rachel I would," Quinn began, her voice trembling somewhat. "I mean, I'd love to but…" she trailed off slightly, dropping eye contact for the first time since they began their exchange. "I was going to work on the Glee assignment and…"
"Yeah… but I can put it off for a day if you-"
"No, no," Rachel interrupted, shaking her head. "You don't have to do that. We can hang out some other time."
"Rachel, really I don't have to-"
"Quinn, it's fine. I'll be fine, okay?" Rachel watched as Quinn bit down on her lower lip, the guilt she felt for denying Rachel her request clearly evident on her face. It hadn't been Rachel's intention and she mentally scolded herself for her careless actions. "I'll see you tomorrow?" she said uncertainly.
"Okay," Quinn resigned. "I'll see you tomorrow."
With Quinn, and most everyone else, preoccupied with their respective performances, Rachel spent most of the week alone. And at the end of every day she was forced to endure the torture of watching her friends sing out their hearts to one another. She felt genuinely happy for them but couldn't help but feel jealous of them as well.
Valentine's Day itself would prove to be no different, or so Rachel thought. But the moment she opened her locker to gather her books for the day Rachel knew that she had been hugely incorrect. Inside her locker, sitting on top of her books, was a teddy bear holding a heart shaped box of vegan chocolates.
Rachel gaped at the sight, quickly shutting her locker and reopening it in case she had been seeing things. The teddy bear was still there. Rachel removed the box of chocolates from the bear's grasp and found a note behind it. It simply read:
Happy Valentine's Day Rachel
I know you've been down lately, but I've got a little surprise for you later. I hope you like it, and please try to smile today. I miss seeing you happy.
Your Secret Admirer
Rachel read and then reread the note a few times. This would mark her first real Valentine, but she couldn't know who had performed such a deed. She began listing off potential, cringing at the thought of Jacob being her secret admirer. Such thoughts were pushed aside upon closer inspection of the card. It was handwritten and was far too nice to written by him.
But sadly, Rachel couldn't think of anyone else who would do something like this for her. She wouldn't let that bring her down though and patiently waited for whatever was planned for her. Throughout the day she was on edge, not knowing what to expect of when to expect it.
Her eyes would snap towards the door when it would open during the middle of class. At lunch, she mindlessly scanned the cafeteria, garnering some confused looks and questions from her friends. Rachel lied, saying that she was just stretching. She knew no one believed her, but she didn't want to build up hope unnecessarily.
Towards the end of the day, she had concluded that that had been a smart decision to make. She had seen many acts of affection throughout the day, it was Valentine's Day after all, but none of them were aimed at her. She would be going to Glee soon and was not at all excited to watch yet another serenade.
The bell rang and she got to her feet with a sigh. She walked slowly, only entering the choir room a moment before she was meant to. They had apparently started early because Quinn had already taken the floor. Behind her was Mercedes, Sam and another boy which Rachel was not familiar with. Rachel smiled at Quinn, receiving one back.
"Glad you could make it. Here, come on, sit down." Quinn raced up to Rachel, taking her hand and settling her down in the front row. She leaned in close, bringing their faces only inches apart. "I hope you like it," she whispered before returning to her previous position.
Rachel's heart skipped a beat. Surely the wording had only been a coincidence. The band started up and Quinn began to sing, "Cherish is the word I use to describe." Her eyes locked with Rachel's. "All the feeling that I have hiding here for you inside," she sang, pointing two fingers towards her heart. Sam and the other boy started in on the chorus, but Rachel paid them little mind.
She couldn't wrap her mind around it. Quinn was singing, seemingly, to her. With every step and every word her hazel orbs remained focused on her brown ones. Her looks were done in such an obvious manner. Rachel was certain that she couldn't have been the only one to notice, yet she couldn't find it in her to turn away and check nor did she want to in case she missed a moment of such a lovely act which was just for her. Her heart rate quickened as the song went on. She placed her hands over heart for fear that it may just burst out of her chest.
As the number came to an end, Quinn made a motion as though to approach Rachel only to backtrack and cast shifting glances throughout the room. She bowed graciously as they received a round of applause and immediately took the seat next to Rachel afterwards. Rachel observed Quinn for a moment before bringing her eyes forward to watch the rest of the performances for the day.
When Glee let out, both of them took their time to straighten themselves out, lingering in the choir room until they were the only ones left. Rachel wasn't sure how to broach the subject, especially if she had misread things, but wasn't given much time to think it over when Quinn approached her. "Did you like your surprise?" she asked shyly, hands hidden behind her.
"I-I did," Rachel stuttered. "It was lovely but-"
"You don't like me back," Quinn resigned dejectedly, cutting in before Rachel could finish.
"Quinn, you can stop pretending."
"What?" Quinn asked, brow furrowed in complete confusion.
"You can stop pretending that you like me," the brunette repeated.
"You thinking I'm pretending?" the blonde asked, her incredulous tone causing Rachel's current stance on the situation to falter if only somewhat. She wasn't sure what to believe anymore. She opened her mouth to speak, but all she released was a breath of air. "I like you Rachel," Quinn admitted. "I really like you. And I don't know if you might, or even could like me back, but I had to do this because I hate seeing you upset and… I don't know, I was hoping that I might take you to dinner," she shrugged. Quinn turned her back to Rachel, ready to leave. "I'll understand if you don't want to."
She when took a step forward when she received no reply, but was quickly stopped by a hand gripping onto her own. She was promptly spun around and greeted to the brightest smile she had seen on Rachel's face in a long while. "Where exactly would you take me?"
Quinn breathed out a sigh of relief. "Um, well I stumbled upon this vegan friendly place the other day, and I thought maybe you might…"
AN: Man... this ending felt predictable and clichéd, but I wanted to write something Valentine's related so there.
And I wanted to used that one mash-up from last years Valentine's episode and aim it Rachel.
I also realized how big of a jerk I am. I just reread over "Puppy Love" (which is my personal favorite work) and I am a real jerk. If people still waiting for updates, which I'll understand if you aren't, then I'll definitely get to work on it. (I only had like 2 or 3 more chapters planned)