A/N: Hi everyone! This is my first real try at Faberry fic, well the first I've really planned out and written quite a few chapters for without giving up. I have 14 chapters currently written up and another five planned at the moment so hopefully you guys won't have really long waits between chapters if it turns out you actually like it. This picks up from the end of season one. Season two spoilers will be sprinkled throughout, though some scenes and events will be altered to suit the story. Please, feel free to tell me what you think, constructive criticism is always welcome as is praise ;). This is only the prologue, things will swifly pick up after this.
This is totally unbetaed, I apologise in advance for any mistakes. I am in desperate need for a beta to correct my bad grammar and bounce idea's off of, so if anyone's interested, please let me know.
Kurt had really gone overboard when he had decided to host that years traditional end of year summer pool party. The party that gave the students a chance to celebrate the academic year coming to a close and a chance to say goodbye to everybody before they went their own way for 6 weeks. Fire pits had been placed strategically around the large garden, hundreds of bright white fairy lights hanging in and between the trees outlining the back of the Hummel house.
Wooden tables with white linen tablecloths had been lined up against the wall, layered with a full spread of pastries and cakes, chips, mini hamburgers and cocktail sausages. Cases of wine coolers were stacked up on the patio at the end of the table.
The area was essentially left untouched causing Kurt to glare witheringly at anybody who passed it on their way to the barbeque and beer keg which was being manned by Finn who, upon Rachel's insistence, wore a black apron bearing the slogan 'I kiss better than I cook'.
The party was already almost five hours in and as the sky gradually darkened, the students of McKinley High became increasingly buzzed with the effects of alcohol. Several groups, all holding red plastic cups in their hands, surrounded the extravagant barbeque chatting animatedly to the chef and his girlfriend.
Watching them it was plain to see that the attention was far too much for Finn to handle when he was trying so hard to concentrate on creating a successful hamburger. He would often try to participate in conversation whilst rotating burgers and other meats but would always finish by frowning slightly and raising one of those smiles that said he had no idea what was going on.
Rachel, however, was thoroughly enjoying being the centre of attention for once. Laughing and joking with the girls that were slightly too drunk to notice who they were actually talking to. Still, it was evidently doing wonders for the fatally insecure girls confidence.
Quinn couldn't help but roll her eyes and shake her head intolerantly as she turned away from the scene and checked out the rest of the party. Tina, Artie and Mercedes were singing along to Usher's 'DJ got us falling in love'. Brittany and Santana were playing together in the pool, flirtatiously splashing each other before laughing and hugging each other. Mike and Matt were nowhere to be found though Quinn remembered them talking to two cheerios earlier in the day and she figured they were somewhere with them.
Finally her attention strayed to the furthest side of the pool, her eyes narrowing as she recognized the form of her 'kind of maybe could be' boyfriend leaning against a tree with his arm slung casually over a petite blonde sophomore in a barely there bikini.
It was obvious that they were flirting, the way she glanced up at him whilst chewing her bottom lip and pushed her chest out to create the image that her breasts were bigger than they really were. And the looks he was giving. Quinn knew all of his looks only too well. She had, regretfully and ashamedly fallen for those looks. The way he would smile at a girl with that arrogant grin and flex his arm muscles more than usual.
It was actually quite pathetic, Quinn thought, when she was the one looking on from the outside yet she was torn between who she should be more annoyed with.
The girl for knowing that he was, for all intents and purposes, involved with Quinn Fabray or with Puck who had promised once again to stay faithful to her. She finally settled on the girl, figuring that she knew what Puck was like before she had made the decision to try dating him and so she shouldn't expect anything less.
"Would you mind if I sat here?"
Startled, Quinn quickly turned her head to find Rachel staring up at her with wide hazy eyes and a perplexed expression upon her face. Quinn glanced swiftly over to the barbeque, noting that she hadn't even realized anyone approaching her. The barbeque grill had now been abandoned and Finn had joined Mercedes, Tina and Artie.
"Errr… I guess," she replied slowly with a shrug.
"Great. I don't think I can stand much longer, everything seems to be swaying," she finished in a whisper.
Arching one perfectly defined eyebrow, Quinn stared at Rachel and pressed her lips tightly together, trying to control the smile that was threatening to break through. She watched as the dark-haired diva carefully sat down on the chair, her fingers tightly gripping the edge of the seat to keep her balance.
"You ok?" Quinn asked.
"Um… yes. I just think that the fruit punch has more of a kick to it than I first thought. It's really nice though, do you want to try some?" Rachel asked, thrusting the red beaker towards Quinn face.
"Whoa, no thank you," Quinn declined, holding her hands up and pushing Rachel's hands away. "Someone's gotta stay sober to drive everybody else home."
"But Kurt said that we can all stay here tonight. Not the cheerios and football players obviously but he wants the glee club to stay together," Rachel said. "One last night of fun before we say goodbye. A kind of private celebration of getting another year of Glee club." She grinned. "Despite everything that has happened this year, I like to think that we, as a group, have grown somewhat close…well at least to the point where we can tolerate one another now… "
Quinn frowned so hard she could literally feel every crease of her forehead. As annoying as she found the tiny diva to be, she also thought it was pretty amazing that Rachel was able to form a coherent sentence when she was swaying so much with a far away look in her eyes.
"You do realize you're still talking, don't you?"
Rachel shut her mouth and stared at Quinn, her chin wrinkling slightly as she gazed offended at the blonde.
"Yes!" she snapped, folding her arms defensively across her chest. "Do you realize that you've practically said nothing all night?"
Quinn dragged her eyes over Rachel, assessing the possible danger of a true Rachel Berry diva fit.
"Yes I do," she responded then turned away from Rachel and faced back towards the party, her eyes immediately coming to rest once again on Puck. He was still talking to the perky sophomore though she was now wedged between the tree trunk whilst his forearm rested just above her head. Quinn could tell he was in full on Puckasaurus mode.
"Why do you let him do that to you?" Rachel breathed out next to her.
"Wh… what?" Quinn stuttered as she turned her attention back to Rachel.
"Puck!" Rachel reiterated, waving an arm in the direction he was still standing. "He's supposed to be your boyfriend and instead of sitting here with you, he's talking to some mini Barbie doll midget type person while you're sat on a chaise lounge in the corner on your own. It shouldn't be like that."
"Oh yeah, and what do you know about relationships?" Quinn said, giving Rachel her best death glare.
Rachel recoiled slightly, her deep rooted fear of the ex-cheerleader coming to the forefront of her mind, but then her determination set in and she sat up straighter and stared Quinn dead in the eye.
"I know that they shouldn't be like that. I know that when you say you're committed to someone then they are the only person that you're with. In every way. A relationship should be about two equally committed people together, not one committed person watching one un-committed person with other people. I am a great believer in monogamy Quinn."
"Rachel," Quinn sighed. "You don't know anything about my relationship with Puck. We never said we were fully committed to each other so he is under no obligation to stay glued to my side whenever we go out like Finn is to you."
"I'm not suggesting that he should stay glued to you. I'm merely stating the fact that, whether you're fully committed or not, the boy you're seeing should not be flirting with other girls when he came to a party with you as his date," Rachel replied frustrated. "He was even with other girls whilst you were carrying his child and living in his mothers house. That's not right Quinn. And it's certainly not fair to you," she finished, shaking her head.
Quinn turned away from Rachel and stared directly into the swimming pool, watching as the flames from the fire pits danced in the waters reflection. She didn't want to hear this. She didn't even need to hear it. Everything that Rachel was saying was true but Quinn had known what Puck was like, she was under no illusion that he would never even try to stay faithful to her yet she still clung to him just so that she could say she had someone.
There was also a very large part of her that thought she deserved the way Puck treated her. This was her punishment for treating Finn the way she had, for disappointing her parents and every bad thing she had ever done. Rachel was so quick to attack Puck but maybe Quinn was just as bad as him by putting up with his actions.
She glanced back over to the tree and watched as he leant into the girl and whispered something into her ear.
Yep. She definitely deserved everything she got, she thought with a heavy sigh.
"I'm gonna head home," she muttered, not really expecting Rachel to hear her.
"But… what about Kurt's sleepover? He'll be devastated."
"I don't want to be here right now," Quinn said, standing up and swinging her bag over her shoulder. "Look, I'll see you at the bowling alley next week, ok?"
"Um, actually you won't. I have to catch a flight to France tomorrow evening so I won't be going. I'll be gone most of the summer too," Rachel told her, reminding Quinn that she had made an effort to find out what everyone else planned to do with their summer but had never thought to ask Rachel.
She couldn't help but envy the girl slightly. She was going to spend an entire summer in France, someplace that was so different from Lima, Ohio. It was everything that Quinn had dreamed of, the chance to escape from this god forsaken town and the judgemental eyes of it's residents. Even if was just for a few weeks.
"Well… have a good summer then," she told Rachel then stepped around the smaller girl to head towards the back door.
"Quinn wait!" Rachel called suddenly. For a reason unbeknownst to her, Quinn didn't hesitate to turn back around.
"What?" she asked.
"I just want you to know that no matter what you might think about yourself, I think you deserve a lot better than what you're getting," Rachel told her, sincerity heavy in her voice.
Quinn took a deep breath and swallowed, feeling a sudden rush of emotion block her throat. It had always surprised her in the past that the girl in front of her felt no hate or resentment towards Quinn for the way she treated her, but hearing the brunette talk about her in that way completely amazed her.
She had to admit that she couldn't blame Finn for being in love with Rachel. She was a better person than Quinn could ever be. She was kind and forgiving. And Quinn could see how her diva traits could be endearing instead of annoying. It also didn't hurt that, despite what she and the other cheerios said about her, Rachel was actually beautiful.
Quinn had always maintained that Finn deserved better than her, and with Rachel that was exactly what he was getting. A fresh wave of affection for the smaller girl hit her then and she pressed her lips tightly together.
Unable to speak, she nodded and gave Rachel a small smile then turned to continue her exit of the party, left to wonder whether she would ever be able to believe the kind words that Rachel Berry had just admitted.