Author's Note: I saw this GIF somewhere and then I was encouraged to write it! All of the flashbacks are in italics and are interspersed throughout the story. This story title comes from "Every Teardrop is a Waterfall" by Coldplay.
Disclaimer: I don't own anything.
Rachel Berry ignored the envious stares of the other fans as she slipped backstage. She showed her pass to the security guard standing there and he let her go through to the back. She slowly walked through, unsure of where she should go.
Suddenly, someone caught her by the wrist and she was yanked into a back room. Before she could even think about a response, Rachel was pressed against the wall and a familiar pair of lips descended on to her own.
Rachel smiled against his lips as she locked her fingers in his thick hair. His kiss was deep and possessive, his hands gripping her hips tightly. When the need for air became too great, he pulled his lips from Rachel's and began to place hot, open-mouthed kisses down her neck.
A moan escaped Rachel's lips. "Finn," she breathed.
Finn Hudson smiled and bit down on her pulse point. He soothed the new mark with his tongue before he kissed her gently on the lips once again. "I've been waiting all night to do that," he murmured.
Rachel felt like she was about to melt in a puddle at his words. She arched against him, smiling when he groaned. "Are you almost free to go?"
Finn rested his forehead against hers. "They're making us sign autographs first. Give me half an hour? I can meet you at your apartment."
Rachel kissed him again. "I'm looking forward to it."
Finn gave her his adorable half-smile and kissed her cheek before he went to join the rest of his band out among the throng of fans. Rachel followed and watched for just a little bit as Finn signed autographs for screaming fans and took pictures with them. Not for the first time, a single thought crossed her mind.
How had she ended up here?
Rachel flipped through the sheets of music. She held back a frustrated sigh when she finished yet another row without finding anything. This was completely ridiculous. All she wanted was a new audition song, and she couldn't find anything good enough.
Rachel finished flipping through another row and pushed the music aside with a sigh. She bit her lip and stood there for a moment, trying to figure out a backup plan. She was between her junior and senior year at NYADA and was going to audition for a summer show, and she wanted something that would make her stand out.
Rachel turned to find a tall man on the other side of the rack. He was wearing a baseball cap and a pair of sunglasses even though he was inside. He had a leather jacket on, and Rachel's eyes lingered on the way that it fit his torso. His jaw was covered in a light shadow of stubble, and he was wearing an easy half-smile that was vaguely familiar.
"I am, as a matter of fact," Rachel said. She frowned at the rack of music in front of her. "My usual material just won't cut it for this audition. I need something that will make me stand out."
"What are you auditioning for?" the man asked.
"A summer musical," Rachel said. He nodded his head and joined her on the other side of the rack.
"Ah. I see that your usual material has a lot of Broadway songs." His voice was familiar as well, but Rachel couldn't place where she had heard it.
"They're classics!" Rachel defended.
"Well, you said that you wanted something different, something that would make you stand out." The man gestured for Rachel to follow him, and she went with him to the other side of the store. He pulled a music book out of a pile and flipped open to a song before he showed it to Rachel.
"Journey?" she asked a little skeptically.
"Don't you know this song?" he asked teasingly.
Rachel rolled her eyes, but she did so playfully. "Everyone knows the song "Don't Stop Believing." But do you really think that it will be a good audition song?"
The man nodded his head. "I think that it will. It's a classic, but a different kind from the ones that you're used to singing. And it will definitely make you stand out." He handed her the sheet music, and their fingers brushed when she took it from him. Rachel's cheeks immediately pinked when she felt the tingles run up from the place of contact.
She scanned it for a few moments before she beamed. The man seemed taken aback, his lips parting in surprise. But Rachel didn't notice because she was too excited of the prospect of a new audition song.
"This is perfect! Thank you so much!" Rachel exclaimed.
He smiled again. "No problem."
As he left the music store, it suddenly occurred to Rachel who it was. And she nearly screamed when the realization hit.
It was Finn Hudson, the drummer for the Grammy-award winning band McKinley.
He had been her celebrity crush since she heard his first song a year ago.
And he had talked to her.
Rachel felt a pair of arms slip around her waist. She smiled and leaned back against Finn's chest as he placed several kisses up her neck. Rachel practically purred in pleasure. Finn's touch did things to her that she had never experienced before.
"I'm so glad the concert was in New York tonight," Finn murmured against her neck. "The tour is finally over and now we can relax."
Rachel tried not to get too excited over Finn's words. Instead, she just turned around in his arms and pressed her lips to his. Finn groaned in response and slid his hands under her behind, lifting her up and setting her on the kitchen counter.
They pulled their clothes from each other's bodies, and their lips and hands moved over each bit of skin revealed. Rachel cried out when Finn entered her, his lips at her neck. She clutched at his shoulders as they moved together.
They reached their climax at the same time. Finn rested his head against Rachel's shoulder as they both tried to catch their breaths. His hands moved her body tenderly, but he didn't say anything. He never did.
Rachel just kissed the side of his face as she sank into his embrace.
"You're still here."
Finn looked down at Rachel in surprise from his place next to her on the bed. "Of course I'm still here," he said as his arms tightened around her. "Why wouldn't I be?"
Rachel shrugged her shoulders and tugged the sheet higher up around her body. She felt suddenly vulnerable under Finn's questioning stare. "You've left before," she said carefully. She had nothing to hide. The term of her and Finn's relationship was never really discussed, but she had no reason not to be honest with him.
An unreadable expression came onto Finn's face. He reached up with his hand and brushed Rachel's hair away from her face. He pressed a gentle kiss to her forehead, and Rachel's eyes closed at the loving gesture.
When she opened her eyes again, Finn's calloused fingers were stroking down her cheek. She leaned into his touch when he said, "I'll always stay."
Rachel didn't know if things were going to turn out the way that she wanted them to. But as she looked into Finn's eyes, she found that she was inclined to believe him.
Santana Lopez rolled her eyes as she flopped next to Rachel on the couch. "Can you just stop talking about him already?"
"I'm sorry, Tana!" Rachel exclaimed. "I'm just so excited. I can't believe that I actually met him."
"You've been talking about this for the past three days. It's all I've heard about. Can we at least discuss something else? Like the weather, maybe?"
Rachel blushed. "Everyone is entitled to one obsessive celebrity crush. Mine just happens to be Finn Hudson."
"Honestly, he looks like the Jolly Green Giant," Santana said as she looked at the picture on the magazine in front of her. "The whole band looks really unappealing, actually."
"Stop it, Santana. Just because they're not your type doesn't mean you need to insult them."
"Of course they're not my type." Santana shut the magazine. "So what now? Am I still going to be hearing about how you met the famous Finn Hudson, your dreamy celebrity crush, for the next week?"
Rachel ignored her best friend's jabs as she looked down at the cover of the magazine. Finn was giving her that charming half smile, and Rachel bit her lip. "I wonder if he always goes to that music store."
Santana smirked. "Well there's only one way to find out, isn't there?"
For the first time in a long time, Rachel was the first one to leave. And it was only because she had to get to rehearsal. She was in the chorus of an off-Broadway show but was also the understudy for the lead. Finn gave her a kiss before she left, and Rachel couldn't keep the large smile off her face as she walked to the theater.
"You're looking really happy today," he friend Tina Cohen-Chang said as Rachel took her spot next to her.
Rachel shrugged her shoulders and bit her lip to keep her smile from getting bigger. "I'm just in a really wonderful mood right now." And she really was. It was like things were changing between Finn and Rachel. Something was happening—something that was going to change the terms of their relationship.
Tina studied Rachel carefully. "You've gotten laid!" she exclaimed loudly.
"Tina!" Rachel looked around to make sure that no one had heard her. "What is it with you and Santana and constantly making completely inappropriate and loud observations about my love life?"
"Rachel, it's not like you normally go out and do that sort of thing. It's nice to see you so relaxed for once," Tina said.
Rachel smiled. Things really were changing. And she had a feeling that it was for the better.
Rachel almost squealed when she realized that Finn Hudson was in the music store once again. She was aware that it was mildly creepy that she had kind of been looking for him, but this was the music store that she normally purchased from. She had been here often, so it wasn't like she had gone to the store with the express interest of seeing Finn Hudson.
Rachel tried to remain casual as she wandered over the music rack he was at. He was wearing a baseball cap and sunglasses once again, but now that she knew who he was it was much easier to see it. She didn't draw attention to herself, but Finn looked up and a smile came on to his face when he saw her.
"So," he began, and Rachel felt a thrill run through her. She couldn't believe that this was happening right now. "How did your audition go?"
Rachel smiled. "I got the part."
Finn gave her a full grin. "Congratulations! That's awesome!"
Rachel took another step closer. "That song choice was perfect. "Don't Stop Believing" really helped me to stand out, just like you said."
"I do know a little something about music," Finn said playfully.
And that was her opening. "So why didn't you tell me?"
Finn's brow furrowed behind his sunglasses. "Tell you what?"
Rachel tilted her head as she looked at him. "That you're Finn Hudson."
Finn froze. He stared at her for a long moment before he pulled his sunglasses off, revealing his amber eyes. They were wide with shock but held curiosity. "Why didn't you say anything before?" he finally said.
Rachel smiled. "I didn't realize it until you left. But I thought that it was very chivalrous of you to help me. You didn't have to do that."
Finn shrugged his shoulders but gave her that adorable half-smile. It was nice to see all of his face, instead of it being hidden behind the sunglasses. "It wasn't a big deal."
"I didn't realize that you hung around this music store. I'm here all the time but I've never really seen you here."
"I've been on tour for a while," Finn said. "But I know the owner, and she lets me hang around." He took a step closer to her as well. "You know my name. So what's yours?"
"I'm Rachel Berry."
Finn shook her hand, and they both smiled at each other. Rachel could feel those same tingles running up and down her arm when they made contact. "It's nice to meet you, Rachel Berry."
Rachel opened the door and let out a sigh of relief as she stepped back into her apartment. In addition to rehearsals, Rachel had a job giving voice lessons. It was actually at the music store where she had first met Finn. Shannon Beiste owned it and Finn had put in a good word for her when she had been looking for a job.
It had been a particularly trying lesson, as she had worked with a student who really didn't want to learn anything. Those were always the worst, because they were never any fun. Now all Rachel wanted to do was take a shower and curl up in bed with a good book.
When she opened the door, however, she was surprised to hear soft music coming from somewhere in the apartment. Rachel took off her jacket and deposited her purse on the table next to the door.
Finn suddenly appeared with a smile on his face. Rachel looked at him with wide eyes, her lips parting in surprise.
"Finn? What are you doing here?"
Finn rubbed the back of his neck. "I haven't seen you in a while and I missed you. You've been really great during the whole tour and you came to the concert last night when you didn't have to. I just wanted to do something nice for you."
Rachel felt her heart fill and she beamed at him. She moved until she was standing right in front of Finn and wrapped her arms around his neck, pulling him down for a deep kiss. Before she could realize what was happening, Finn slid his arms around her and lifted her up.
"Finn! Where are you taking me?"
"It's a surprise," he said with his adorable smile.
"Surprise? I don't know how I feel about surprises," Rachel said. She slid her arms around his neck anyway, playing with the hair at his nape.
Finn gave her a look. "Who are you trying to kid?" he said playfully. "You love surprises."
Rachel kissed his cheek as he carried her through the apartment. He took her into the bathroom, and Rachel gasped when she saw what he had done.
There were candles lit all over the room. Rose petals littered the floor and the bathtub was filled with warm water and bubbles. Rachel took the room in with wide eyes before she turned to Finn. He was grinning at her as he set her on her feet.
"I thought you could just have a nice night to relax," Finn said.
Rachel kissed his cheek before she stepped back and stripped her clothes off. She was well aware of Finn's eyes on her, dark with lust and passion. She smiled as she slipped into the warm water and let out an appreciative moan. It was the perfect temperature.
She crooked her finger until Finn came closer to her. He knelt down next to the tub and Rachel pulled him close until she could kiss him.
"Join me?" she murmured when they broke apart.
"Are you sure?" Finn asked. "This is for you."
Rachel kissed him again. "I always feel better when you're around."
It kind of became a weekly thing after that. Rachel and Finn had an unspoken agreement where they would both show up at the music store every Thursday. They spent time flipping through the different music and arguing over what they thought was better in a good-natured manner.
Rachel couldn't believe that this was happening. She was somehow developing a friendship with a celebrity. She didn't know how it happened, and she didn't know why he had decided to befriend her. All Rachel knew was that she was meeting weekly with Finn Hudson.
One day, Finn decided to change their plans. As Rachel flipped through the music book for the newest Tony-award winning musical, Finn asked, "Do you maybe want to go and grab some coffee?"
Rachel looked at him in surprise. Finn had never suggested that they go outside of the music store before. The band McKinley was quickly on the rise to fame—they had even secured a nomination in the best new artist category. For that reason, Finn tried to avoid going out in public with people who weren't used to the spotlight (despite the fact that Rachel had assured him she would be a famous Broadway performer and needed the practice). Finn loved interacting with his fans, and he didn't mind it at all, but he didn't want to expose his friends and family to the media frenzy.
"Are you sure?" Rachel asked.
Finn nodded his head. "Why not? There's a place not too far from here. It's just around the corner, I think. And I've heard that they have some really good vegan desserts."
Rachel couldn't help the smile that crossed her lips and the butterflies that rose in her stomach. Finn had remembered that she was a vegan and was doing what he could to accommodate her. That was so sweet.
"That sounds perfect."
The smile that he gave her made her heart beat faster.
Finn traced small patterns on Rachel's naked back with his calloused fingers. She let out a happy sigh as she snuggled further into his bare chest. This was nice, just being together like this. Finn didn't have any events that he had to go to, and he wasn't away on tour. They could finally just spend some time together.
"What are you doing tomorrow?" Finn asked. She could feel his deep voice rumble in his chest, and she closed her eyes.
"I'm going shopping with Santana tomorrow," Rachel said. "I have no doubt that she'll spend the entire trip trying to pack my closest with completely inappropriate articles of clothing."
Finn chuckled. "I wouldn't mind seeing you wear some inappropriate clothes. Although I prefer you totally naked, it would be fun to rip those clothes off."
Rachel laughed and pushed playfully on his chest. "I'll keep that in mind."
"Tell Santana hi for me, then." Finn pressed a kiss to the top of her head and resumed stroking her back. Rachel couldn't suppress the giggle that escaped her. Finn and Santana had some odd sort of friendship where they were constantly tossing jabs at each other. However, Rachel knew that they secretly considered each other friends.
Santana was probably the only person that actually knew about Finn and Rachel's relationship. She had walked in on them once while they had been in the kitchen, and there had really been no hiding it. Rachel knew that she could completely trust Santana and hat she wouldn't say anything.
"When do you have to leave again?" Rachel asked suddenly. She was just on the brink of sleep and the question slipped from her mouth without any thought. As soon as she was finished speaking, her eyes shot open and she tilted her head to look up at Finn.
To her surprise, he was smiling. "Not for a while, thankfully. We're taking a little bit of a break. We don't even have to start working on our new album for another three or four months."
Rachel tried not to let herself think about what this might mean. They could be using this time to get closer to each other and spend more time together. The parameters of their relationship had never really been discussed—were they even dating?
As if Finn knew what she was thinking about, he kissed her temple softly several times. "It'll be nice to be able to spend some time with you without worrying about crazy schedules," he said softly.
Rachel hid her smile in his chest and kissed the spot over his heart. Maybe they were thinking the same thing. At any rate, Rachel felt as if they were moving forward… and they were doing it together.
Rachel clutched the pillow in her lap tightly as all of the nominees for best new artist were named. They camera panned to each group or single artist, and Rachel's heart skipped a beat when she saw Finn sitting with his other band members—Noah Puckerman, Sam Evans, and Blaine Anderson. Finn looked so good all dressed up in his suit. Was it really possible for a man to look that attractive?
The two presenters took their sweet time opening the envelope and preparing to announce who the winner was. Finally, one of the presenters (who was an artist that Rachel didn't particularly care for) said, "And the winner is… McKinley!"
Rachel screamed. She actually screamed and clapped in pure excitement. Finn and his band had won an actual Grammy. He must be so excited and happy, and Rachel could only imagine what it would be like to see him during the following Thursday.
"So, what? Are you and the Jolly Green Giant, like, an item now?" Santana asked.
Rachel shrugged her shoulders as she looked through a rack of dresses. "We haven't really decided."
Santana rolled her eyes. "Oh my God, Berry. You have been hooking up with him for the past year. You have to talk about the terms of the relationship with him. Open relationship are stupid."
"We're not in an open relationship," Rachel said immediately. And they really weren't. She wouldn't have agreed to whatever her and Finn were if it was an open relationships. The feelings that she had for him ran too deep, and she couldn't be with him if she knew that he was with other people.
That had been the one thing that they had discussed. Finn had flat out told her that he wasn't going to hook up with random people, and Rachel had assured him of the same thing. They weren't in an exclusive, labeled relationship but they weren't seeing other people, either.
"I don't know what we are," Rachel said honestly. "But we're… something. Something special."
"Are you sure?" Santana asked. When Rachel nodded her head, the Latina sighed. "I'll deny it if you say anything, but I actually like Hudson. But I don't want to see you get hurt."
Rachel bit her lip. "I don't mean to sound incredibly naïve, but I don't think that I will. There's something about Finn… He doesn't use the words often, but I can see it in the way that he touches me and looks at me."
Santana hugged Rachel. "I think that you're right, Rachel. This really could be something special. You just need to make sure that you tell him that."
The music store was empty. Beiste had allowed Rachel to wait in it (she had a late lunch and had locked the shop up), as she knew that she was meeting with Finn. Rachel smiled when she saw the Journey music book. It really had been the perfect selection for her audition.
The little bell above the door dinged, and Rachel turned to find Finn striding towards her with a wide grin on his face. She beamed at him and went to meet him in the middle of the room.
"Finn, I watched the Grammy's last night! It was amazing—"
But Rachel was suddenly cut off when Finn's lips came down over hers. She froze in complete shock for a long moment before she wrapped her arms around his neck and moved her lips with his.
The kiss was soft and gentle, and Finn's lips lingered against hers when he pulled away. He waited until Rachel's eyes slowly opened before he spoke.
"When I won last night, all I could think about was kissing you," Finn admitted.
"Really?" Rachel couldn't believe that she was actually hearing those words come from Finn Hudson's lips. He had kissed her. More than that, he had wanted to kiss her. She couldn't be sure if this was a dream or not.
"Yeah," Finn breathed. He brushed her hair back from her face. "Rach, you're amazing. And I…" His eyes darkened. "I really want to kiss you again."
Rachel strained up on her tiptoes and brushed her lips across his. "Then go ahead and do it."
Rachel looked up in surprise as she left the theater. Standing in front of her was a pale, fashionably dressed man that she knew from Finn's family pictures; it was Kurt Hummel, the band's manager and Finn's step brother.
"Oh! Um… hello!" Rachel didn't really know what to say. She had never actually met him before, and she didn't really know what to say to him. She didn't think that, "Hi, I've been a secret weird sort of relationship with your famous brother for almost the past year" would go over very well.
"You had a backstage pass at the last McKinley concert, didn't you?" Kurt asked.
The concert had been recent, and there hadn't been that many people backstage, so Rachel honestly wasn't surprised that Kurt remembered her. But that didn't mean she knew what to say to him. Coming up with a lie on the spot, Rachel said, "I won the pass in a contest. It was really a lot of fun."
"Hmm. I wasn't aware that we were having a contest," Kurt said thoughtfully. But he didn't say much more on the subject, so Rachel didn't bother to try and expand on her explanation. "What did you think of the concert?"
"I enjoyed it!" Rachel said. She really had. Sure, the band had the typical rock songs about parties and sex and that sort of thing. But they had some really great songs (a lot of which were actually written by Finn), and those were her favorite. "I mean, it's not exactly the usual style of music I listen to. I'm much more into Broadway classics, but I enjoy McKinley's music very much."
Kurt gasped dramatically as his eyes lit up. "You love Broadway? So do I! I had no idea that a fan of my brother's band would enjoy the same thing that I do."
"I'm in the chorus of an off-Broadway show right now, actually," Rachel said.
"You have to tell me what show. I'll get tickets to see it immediately," Kurt said.
"Really?" Rachel asked. When Kurt gave her and eager nod, Rachel quickly gave him the information for her show. "I can have some tickets set aside for you, if you'd like."
"That would be great! As a thank you, maybe I could set up a meet and greet with the band, if you'd like. They're doing an appearance at a store opening."
Rachel found herself answering before she could think about it. "That would be amazing. Thank you so much!"
Rachel shifted in Finn's lap and locked her fingers in his thick hair as she kissed him hard. Finn's hands smoothed down her bare back and stopped to rest them on her behind. Rachel moaned in appreciation as his hands began to knead, and she rocked against him.
"Finn," Rachel breathed as he attached his lips to her neck. She tilted her head back to allow him more access and moaned when he bit down on a sensitive spot. Finn's tongue laved over the new mark. He loved how responsive she was, and one of his favorite things to do was coax those sounds like that from her. Finn was a musician, and Rachel was quickly becoming one of his favorite instruments to play.
They had been continuing with their weekly meetings, but the nature of them had changed. They still talked, and it was still the best part of both their weeks, but now they spent a large chunk of that time hooking up.
They were actually in Rachel's apartment now, in her bedroom in nothing but their underwear. Rachel pulled Finn's lips back to hers for another kiss before she pushed him back on the bed. She ran her hands down his bare chest, marveling over the play of muscles under his skin.
Rachel straddled his hips and reached behind her, unhooking her bra. She dangled it to the side and smiled when she saw how Finn's eyes went wide and even darker than they were before. He slid his hands up her stomach and cupped her breasts.
Rachel threw her head back as his fingers tugged at her nipples. Rachel ground down on the hardness she could feel under, and Finn groaned.
"Rach, you're so beautiful," he muttered.
Finn's admission took Rachel by surprise. He had called her pretty before he had kissed her. Since they had stared hooking up, he had also called her hot and sexy. But the way that he was looking at her now, almost in awe, made Rachel feel all of those things at the same time as more.
"Finn…" Rachel moaned. "I need you."
Finn's hands went back down to the waistband of her panties, and Rachel lifted her hips so he could pull them off. She helped him shuck off his boxers and she retrieved a condom from her bedside table. With a wicked grin, Rachel slowly rolled it down Finn's length.
Rachel shifted then sank down on him. Finn moaned her name and Rachel cried out. She rested her hands against his abdomen and slowly began to swivel her hips. Finn's hands flew to her hips as he began to thrust up into her.
"Oh, God!" Rachel moaned. This just felt so good and amazing and she couldn't believe that it was happening right now.
Finn levered himself up and kissed her hard before he moved his lips down her neck and across her collarbone. He kissed to her left breast and took her nipple between his lips, rolling his tongue over it. Rachel locked her fingers in his hair again as her movements quickened.
They dissolved in wordless moans and cries of pleasure. Rachel fell over the edge, crying Finn's name. He followed a few thrusts later, her name spilling from his lips.
Rachel collapsed on Finn's chest, and her eyes drifted shut in exhaustion. She was surprised to fell Finn's hands stroking her hair back and his fingers stroking down her naked back. He didn't say anything, but he didn't need to; Rachel could understand what he was trying to convey through his touch.
This had been a show where the lead couldn't be there, so Rachel got to play the part. She came off stage once the curtain was down, her cheeks flushed with exhilaration. To her surprise, Kurt was backstage waiting for her. And to shock her even further, Finn was with him as well. Not only that, but Finn was also holding a beautiful bouquet of pink carnations.
"Rachel, you were fantastic!" Kurt exclaimed. "That was truly a wonderful performance."
Finn was giving her a look full of awe. "You're going to make it on Broadway, Rachel. I just know it," he said firmly.
Rachel's heart filled with love. Finn had heard her sing before, but as far as she knew, he hadn't seen her preform in a show. He was smiling at her, and he really looked like he wanted to pull her into his arms.
Rachel suddenly remembered that Kurt was there, and she and Finn were supposed to be acting like they didn't know each other. So she smiled brightly at Finn and put on the façade of a star struck girl. It had been a while since she had been thrown off by Finn's celebrity, but it wasn't hard to pretend.
"That really means a lot, coming from you," Rachel said.
Finn shrugged his shoulders. "I'm no Broadway performer, but I know a good singer when I see one. You were amazing." He held the carnations out to her. "These are for you."
"Finn picked them out, so I hope that they're okay," Kurt said. "I tried to get some roses, but Finn insisted."
Rachel beamed as she accepted the flowers from Finn. "They're perfect."
Kurt's phone rang just then, and he excused himself to go answer it. As soon as he was gone, Finn pulled Rachel into his arms and kissed her deeply.
Rachel stood there in shock for a split second. Finn had never kissed her in public like this. True, they were backstage at a theater, but anyone could still see them. It didn't take Rachel long to twine her arms around Finn's neck and press her body to his as she returned the kiss.
"We should go out and celebrate," Finn said when they broke apart.
"Really?" Rachel asked. "You want to go out?"
The same unreadable look from a few days before came onto Finn's face, and he tucked Rachel's hair behind her ear and cupped her face. His thumb stroked over her cheek. "Rachel," he began lowly. "I know that things haven't exactly been… I mean, we…" Finn shook his head and rubbed his free hand over his face. "Rachel, I want to—"
Before Finn could finish, Kurt came back, effectively putting an end to Finn and Rachel's conversation. They pulled away from each other and Finn gave her an apologetic look as his fingers discreetly brushed against hers.
Rachel honestly didn't mind that they had been interrupted. Finn wanted to talk about their relationship and everything that it meant. And from the way that he had been talking, it sounded as if he wanted everything she did.
It had been three months since Finn had first kissed her. Rachel had wanted to ask what they were, but she had put it off because she had been having too much fun. Now she thought that it was too late to say anything without ruining what they had.
Because despite everything, Rachel found herself falling in love with Finn Hudson. And it wasn't just because he was some celebrity and she was star struck. This went so beyond that. She knew the real Finn now, and she loved him.
She was currently lying sprawled across Finn's chest. His hands were tracing little patterns up and down her back. Rachel smiled when she realized that he was spelling out song titles. The ones that he did most often were Journey songs.
"Rachel?" Finn murmured.
She kissed his chest and turned her face towards his. "Hmm?"
"I just wanted you to know… There was some magazine article that's been saying some stuff about me and a supermodel. It's not true."
Rachel bit her lip. Yes, she had seen it. But she hadn't said anything because she believed that Finn wouldn't do something like that to her. Like she had thought before, she knew Finn. And she knew that he wouldn't go behind her back like that, because he wasn't that kind of guy. Finn was a good, honest guy.
"I know, Finn," Rachel said.
Finn smiled at her and kissed her forehead. "I don't want to see other people."
Rachel beamed at him. "Neither do I."
What she didn't know that that would be the extent of their conversation for a very long time.
Rachel didn't think that she had ever been this angry in her entire life.
Finn entered the apartment holding two coffee cups. "Hey," he said as he bent to kiss her on the forehead. "I got you a chai whatever that thing is that you like. Are you…" He noticed the look on her face. "Rachel, what's wrong?"
Rachel tossed the magazine in front of him. On the cover was a picture of Finn leaving a restaurant with the heiress Sugar Motta trailing after him. The headline was questioning whether or not there was a relationship between the two.
The thing was, there had never been that many articles like this over the past year. In fact, the one with the supermodel had been the only one that Rachel had ever seen. Finn was very good at staying out of all the unnecessary drama.
Finn sighed. "Rachel—"
"You know, I've never asked questions before," Rachel interrupted. "I was always just so happy to be with you that I never really questioned what our relationship was. But seeing this… Finn, there are eyewitness accounts of you in the restaurant with her!"
"Yeah, and what those eyewitnesses didn't say was that we weren't alone! Rachel, you know that I wouldn't do that!" Finn exclaimed.
Rachel closed her eyes and let out a slow breath. "I know you wouldn't," she said. She really did know that. She knew it after the first article and she knew it now. Finn hadn't been lying when he said that he didn't want to see other people. "But this article has made me realize that we aren't actually together… are we?"
That same expression was back on Finn's face, but he didn't say anything. He knew exactly what she was talking about.
To Rachel's embarrassment, tears started to burn in her eyes. "Finn, you have to know that I want this. I want you, and I want to be with you. But I can't—"
"I love you."
Rachel stopped talking immediately. Happiness bloomed in her chest, but she couldn't let that stop her. This talk was long overdue. "Excuse me?" she sputtered.
Finn stepped closer to her and took her hands. "I love you, Rachel Berry. I've loved you since before I kissed you that first time in the music store."
"Then I don't understand—"
Finn's hands tightened around hers. "Rachel, I didn't want to ruin what we had. I wasn't trying to keep you a secret, I promise. I was trying to protect you from the all the crazy that would have happened. I love you, Rachel."
Rachel allowed Finn to pull her into his arms. She looked up at him and put her hand on his cheek. "I love you too, Finn. But you just have trust that everything is going to be fine. We can't be scared about this anymore."
They weren't broken up.
They weren't exactly talking, but they were still together in whatever way that they were. Rachel really did love him, and she knew that he loved her. She had been so happy when he said that. But they needed to figure some things out.
It was two weeks later, and it turned out that the meet and greet Kurt had set up for her to meet the band actually included a little concert. Rachel wasn't going to turn down Kurt's kindness, so she put on a pretty dress and headed to the store opening with Santana and Tina in tow.
"Do you want to get in the greeting line?" Santana asked once they got there. The band was sitting at a table, taking pictures and signing autographs. Rachel caught Finn's eye. He sent her a small smile, and she bit her lip.
"Not… not right now," Rachel said softly. Santana squeezed her shoulder and Tina (who now also knew about Rachel and Finn's relationship) gave her a side hug. They went over to the concert area and waited for it to begin.
Ten minutes later, the band got up on stage. To her surprise, Finn, instead of sitting at the drums, got up into the front with the microphone. Someone else took Finn's place at the drums. Both Puck and Blaine had guitars, and Sam was at his usual place on the bass.
"Hey everyone," Finn said into the microphone. "We have a new song for all of you. I wrote it, and the guys insisted that I sing it, so I hope you don't mind that I'm taking Blaine's place for a song." When the crowd cheered, Finn smiled before he continued speaking.
"This song is for someone really special," Finn said. He searched the crowd until he found Rachel, and he looked right into her eyes. "And I love her very much."
With that, the band began the song. Finn's beautiful voice filled the room as he sang about love and a tether, and how he could always feel her. Rachel pressed a hand to her mouth, tears burning in her eyes as Finn's voice washed over her.
When the song was finished, Finn jumped off the stage and made his way over to Rachel. When he reached her, he took her into his arms and kissed her deeply.
"I'm sorry. About everything."
Rachel touched Finn's cheek. They were curled up in bed together after the amazing concert. There were already pictures up on the internet of their kiss, and Rachel had no doubt that articles were being written right now. But she didn't care.
"You don't have anything to be sorry for, Finn. It's not like I said anything either," she murmured.
"But I shouldn't have… Rachel, I never met to put you in position like that. I love you and I want to be with you and I never wanted to hide it."
Rachel kissed his cheek. "Well, I'd say that you redeemed yourself pretty well tonight."
Finn chuckled as he rolled Rachel underneath him. He kissed placed hot, open-mouthed kisses down her neck before he said, "Are you always going to expect me to write songs for you when we get in a fight?"
Rachel returned his laugh as she pulled him up to her so that she could kiss him. "Yes, actually. I do expect you to write me a beautiful song every time we get into an argument. But I don't know how you're going to come up with something that can top a tether."
"I can always feel you," Finn murmured. He kissed her again before he moved his lips down her body.
Rachel moaned. "I expect a private concert later."
"Anything for you, Rachel." And then they showed each other just how much they loved one another.
Rachel smiled up at Finn as he pulled her chair out for her. However, a scowl formed on her face when she caught sight of the photographers outside of the restaurant's front window. Finn immediately knew what that look was for and kissed her softly before he took the seat next to her.
"Just ignore them, baby," he told his wife.
Rachel pouted. "I'm already on bump watch, Finn! They're taking pictures of me and purposefully looking for my baby bump!"
Finn slid his hand over the small bump under Rachel's loose shirt. His hand caressed the area softly, and Rachel relaxed at his touch.
"It is a very adorable bump," he said. "I take pictures of it all the time, but you don't yell at me."
Rachel patted his cheek. "That's because I love you, Finn. But I swear, this is almost as bad as when they sent those undercover photographers to take pictures at our wedding."
"And they didn't get any," Finn reminded her. He kissed Rachel again. "It'll all work out just fine. I promise."
Rachel beamed at Finn and kissed him again. "You always know the right thing to say. I love you."
"I love you too, baby," Finn said.
Just then, all of the people that they were having lunch with arrived at the same time. Finn and Rachel's friends and families had got together to have lunch for the day. Naturally, Santana was the first to comment as she took a seat at the table.
"Did we just avoid another Rachel freak out?" she jabbed.
Tina nudged Santana. "I think she had a reason for it. We saw all of the paparazzi out there."
"You think that she'd be used to it by now," Kurt pointed out. "You know, since she and Finn have been married for the past two years and they were dating for a full year before that. People are always trying to get pictures of them."
Rachel ignored her friends' bickering. Finn's words from earlier and his touch helped to keep her calm. She smiled up at him and he grinned down at her. He hadn't removed his hand from over her baby bump, and Rachel leaned into his side.
As always, she could feel Finn's love for her through his touch and the way he looked at her. But as he murmured the words in her ear once again, she realized that it was just as wonderful to hear it. And she knew that she would for the rest of her life.
Author's Note: Just something sweet and fluffy. The photoset was pretty cute, so I hope that I did it justice. Thanks for reading!