Pity and Promise

Rated: T (for language)

Pairing(s): Faberrittana, Finchel (implied)

Disclaimer: I do not own Glee or any of the songs used in this story.

Summary: The gang notices Rachel's change, but they might not find it to be as negative as they first thought. Only over time will they realize this is more than an act. She refuses to let them help. Now Quinn, Santana, and Brittany start taking matters into their own hands.

A/N: I really don't have any words for this chapter, except at the end. c:

After leaving the school-hey, it wasn't ditching-they barely heard any word back from any of the other glee kids. Brittany was in the back playing with her hands to calm her nerves, and Santana was in the passenger's seat, holding her phone in her hands. The only updates they received were from Finn and Mercedes, confirming that she was neither near the school nor Breadstix.

"Let them know we're at her house." The blonde's eyes were hard and focused, totally opposite to the emotional girl in the backseat. Santana nodded her head and quickly sent the text before they pulled into the driveway, noting the mailbox that said "Berry."

Quinn watched the latina open the car door and help Brittany out, leading to them walking together toward the front door of Rachel's house. There weren't many excuses to come to Rachel Berry's house, so the blonde was grateful that she was able to remember. Now was the time that all of the doubts came to her mind. What if she wasn't even here? Did she run away? Was she just not feeling well and decided to go home? She was hopeful for the last option, but it wasn't right to get her hopes up.

Santana had since approached the door and knocked tentatively on it, something Quinn rarely saw. Not getting any response was what brought the latina back and in turn, her fist. She banged harder on the door, yelling pretty loudly. "Berry, it's Santana. Open the door!" Quinn pulled back and when the noise stopped, she could have sworn she heard small shuffling coming from inside. Nudging the protesting latina away, she knocked herself.

"Rachel, please open the door." The shuffling got louder, though none closer to where they actually needed her to grant them access. "Rachel, come on!" She grew frantic when she heard nothing else, and ultimately stopped trying to assault the door with her fist. Grunting, she turned around and stomped to the car.

She was aware of the two other girls' gazes on her, probably thinking she was giving up. It was the other way around, actually. Reaching through the window of the vehicle, she grabbed her small handbag and dug through it until she pulled out a small, thin piece of metal. Anyone would think she was crazy, but she knew carrying it around everywhere had its benefits.

Santana and Brittany automatically moved out of the way when Quinn took her place again. This time her hands were fiddling with the lock as she jammed the small lockpick into the keyhole. Years of Coach Sylvester's training really payed off, but when the door slowly opened her hesitance returned. The house was deadly silent, but the shattered glass next to the wall proved that it was anything but empty.

"Berry?" The latina barged in next to her, still keeping a tight grip on Brittany's hand. "Damnit, Rachel, where are you?" It felt a little weird, walking through the girl's house. In some ways, it felt like a horror film.

She caught Santana's head turning to calm down Brittany who was insistantly tugging at her arm. This was what set off her alarms and she wondered if perhaps she wasn't so alert, she might have missed the small movement from behind the counter in the kitchen.

Brittany broke away from the hand holding onto her's and came to walk beside Quinn. The taller blonde was pointing to the same place that had caught her attention just moments before. Santana obviously caught on and without any warning, walked between them with some sort of urgency in her steps. When the latina finally turned the corner, Quinn's anxiety spiked when she heard Santana curse. "Rachel, what the hell!"

She found her. Of course she found her. She wouldn't be saying that if she hadn't found her.

Get it together, Quinn.

Even encouraging words didn't prepare her for what she saw. Rachel leaning against the cabinets, her hand pulled close to her, with blood peaking from her sleeve. She noticed the knife not far from her and when she finally made eye contact with the brunette she could see more fear and pain then she had ever noticed.

Out of sheer instinct, Quinn kicked the sharp object away from arm's reach and took Santana's place next to the girl. "Rachel, what did you do?" She sure hoped she didn't sound as horrified as she looked. But even the matching expression Rachel gave her couldn't convince her that she didn't do this to herself.

"I-I didn't... It was an accident... I-I didn't mean to..." It was finally out in the open. Not all the confessions; but when Rachel burst into tears and Quinn caught her in her arms, she knew the act was done. The brunette was as vulnerable as she was ever going to get. She wanted to help her, but she needed to know first.

"Rachel, what happened?" She tightened her grip on the sobbing girl while Brittany embraced her from the other side, Santana sitting next to her.

"I-I came home today... I needed to be alone. I cried a little. I was making dinner." She choked back more tears, causing Quinn to pull her closer. "I-I didn't do it on purpose... I would never-"

"Shh, Rachel. It's okay." The blonde pulled Rachel's head to her chest and held her. "It's okay. We're here now. We're not going anywhere." The looks on Santana and Brittany's faces told her she agreed with her. "I just need to see." Rachel looked up, and Quinn had to hold back from shedding her own tears at the sadness reflecting in her eyes. The brunette hesitantly pulled out her hand, and Santana took it instead.

It didn't look bad, but enough to scare the crap out of you. The only concern was that it was still bleeding. "Britt, can you go get some wrap from the bathroom?" Brittany nodded to her girlfriend and left the room in a hurry.

"Does she even know where the bathroom is?" Relief spread through her at the amusement in Rachel's voice; something she hadn't heard in what seemed like a long time.

"I think so." She didn't even have to say anything to the girl when she stood them up, Quinn holding onto Rachel's good hand with no intention of letting go. She also had to admire Santana for carefully taking the other one.

They all sat down on the couch together, with Rachel's head leaning on the blonde's shoulder. The warm tears were still fresh and she could feel them muliplying. Thankfully, Brittany arrived in time with the first aid and she helped with applying the gauze to the wound and then wrapping it up.

The brunette didn't say a word through this process, and she wasn't able to get a single syllable out of her mouth before she broke down again. Quinn gladly took the position as comforter, grateful that Santana and Brittany were being supportive as well.

"Rachel, everything's okay now." Quinn soothed her, and she heard an uncomprehendaple reply. "What?"

"I said..." Rachel wiped some of the many tears that were falling. "I'm done."

"What are you talking about?" Questioned Santana. It then hit Quinn that she was the only one aware of what was really going on.

"This... this isn't me." Rachel said sadly, pulling her small black skirt. "The only time you took notice of me is after I became... this." Quinn used her sleave to clean the brunette's face of the tears. "I wanted a friend... someone who would look out for me like you guys did these past two weeks."

Santana's looked like she was trying to comprehend what was going on.

"I thought that maybe if I changed you... you would like me more. But things changed then..." Quinn looked at her sympathetically. "I wanted to change more of myself. Be thinner, be... prettier. I started doubting myself, but in the back of my mind I knew... you guys did care. And I was pushing you away because of my selfish reasons." She crashed into Quinn's embrace once more and this time, both Santana and Brittany joined them.

"Rachel, you could have talked to us." Santana's voice was unusually soft. "Sure, you're usually really annoying in glee but we could have worked something out."

"Really?" Rachel lifted her head, her face as innocent as a child's. "We could have been friends before? But you never liked me..."

"Let me explain this to you, then." Santana said. "You went through this whole stunt to try and get us to like you. I say that's devotion-even I wouldn't be that determined. But what happened as a result wasn't something I would wish on my worst enemy." The latina winked and wrapped her arms around the girl, making Quinn even prouder.

"I always wanted to hang out with you, Rachel." Brittany gave the girl a quick peck on the lips; something probably only Brittany could get away with doing.

It was then that Quinn realized that she was the only one that hadn't spoken. "Rachel, I..." The girl turned to her, and she almost burst into tears at the girl. The old Rachel Berry. "I'm sorry." She cried. "I'm sorry that you had to go through it alone, and just for something as simple as being our friend." Santana had the decency to look regretful. "But I want you to know that even if people don't like you, you don't have to change to please them. I think the whole glee club has realized how much you actually mean to them this week. And so have we."

Rachel's eyes filled with tears, and Quinn knew her well enough to know that these were tears of joy and relief. As if by command, all four girls embraced each other, glad that they were able to help in all the right ways.

"You don't have to pretend anymore." Quinn's words were quiet, but were certainly heard. "It's back to the way it should be."

A/N: It's been a lot of work, but I finally finished my first fanfiction. And if you aren't tired of reading, don't worry! I'm hopefully going to have a sort of epilogue after this. But other then that, we're pretty much done. Thank you guys for reading and following me through this little journey. I appreciate all the kind words and I hope you'll stick around for any other fanfictions I have planned in the future. Thanks a bunch! c: