I guess I shouldn't make any promises about when updates will be. I clearly can't stick with anything. Anyway, I re-wrote this chapter like twice. In the end I realized I wasn't going to be happy with it regardless so I'm just posting what I got. :P
I'm curious after this chapter to know who you guys feel the most sorry for? Sam? Rachel? Let me know! :)
I don't own anything but the mistakes! Don't get me sued.
It had been one week.
One week since he had left Rachel parked in the parking lot of a local hotel.
One week since he had made love to the girl he envisioned marrying and growing old with.
One week since he had broken the heart of not only himself, but of the only girl he had ever loved.
It had been an entire week of hell.
He rolled over in his bed and looked at the side Rachel had slept on when they were still together. He was afraid to sleep on her side for fear that it would take her scent away. He looked at the alarm clock on the table and groaned. 4:03 blinked at him in angry red letters. His sleep had since gotten worse. He slept all day and stayed up all night.
He had an hour before he had to be at work. He had taken a week off. He guessed he was allowed to do that since his boss was his best friend, but even best friends had a limit before they could fire someone. He groaned before pulling himself out of bed and going to the bathroom. He looked in the mirror and sighed.
He had never worn facial hair, but in that moment he looked like a grizzly bear. Had he been too depressed to even shave his own face? He looked at his hair, oily from lack of showers. He had also been too upset to take showers. Instead he spent all of his time lying in bed with nothing but thoughts of Rachel.
He relived all of their past encounters, all of their happy times. He thought about all of their times on secret dates, their make-out sessions in theatres during dark Mondays.
Then he would, more often than not, cry some before returning to a slumber where he would once again be haunted by Rachel.
He fought the urge to punch the reflection in his mirror. It was his fault that his entire life was crumbling apart, wasn't it? He had been the fool to fall in love with Rachel Berry back when they were still in their teens. He had been the fool who hadn't told the girl how he felt.
He had been the fool who let Jesse St. James swoop in and steal her away.
He peeled off his t-shirt and boxers before stepping into the shower and turning on the spray. He kept the water cold, praying that it would numb him entirely to the world around him and the emotions within him.
"No, we are out of that," he mumbled while adjusting the thick framed glasses on his face. He thought maybe that by wearing his glasses it would hide his red-rimmed eyes-hide the fact that he had been bawling like a baby.
"Sir, you didn't even look," the young man replied. Sam looked the guy over and realized that he couldn't have been more than sixteen. He kind of reminded him of a male-version of Rachel. "I would appreciate it if you did."
"I said we didn't have it. I work here; I think I would know, damn it," he shouted while slapping his palms against the counter he was seated behind. The young adult nodded quickly before running out of the store. Sam sighed in dejection before dropping his head to the counter-top. "I hate my life," he mumbled.
The store door opened again, much to Sam's chagrin. "Sammy, I've been texting you. I even came by once." He knew that voice. "Oh wow, I would think you were a lady if it weren't for the beard. Wanky."
"Santana," he warned before his phone began to vibrate again. It had been doing that nonstop for the past week. It was always Rachel. Multiple text messages every hour and a phone call every thirty minutes. Sometimes she had gone by his apartment. It had gotten to the point where he would just turn his phone off and quit getting out of bed to look out of his peep hole.
He didn't understand why she couldn't realize that things were over. He couldn't be with her-not when it was tearing him apart. A part of him had hoped that Rachel would be just as miserable without him. She would have to leave Jesse so that their love could truly be. He had been wrong.
He looked at his phone and saw her name flash up. Santana must have noticed because she quickly intercepted the phone and answered. "Listen and listen good," the Latina seethed. Sam instantly wanted to snatch his phone away and spare Rachel anything that Santana could possibly have to say. Of course, he wasn't involved with Rachel anymore. He couldn't save Rachel from anything.
That was what Jesse was for. "Santana, please stop," he pleaded. She looked up at him before turning around so that her back was facing him.
"I heard that in Africa people die like every four minutes, Berry. Excuse me, I meant St. James," Santana's sickeningly sweet voice whispered. He couldn't help but wonder what the hell she was talking about. Hearing Rachel's married name was a dagger in him. "I'm considering booking you a ticket," she sneered. "Leave Sam alone, okay? You had your fun. Go back to playing house with your husband." With that she hung up angrily.
"Santana," Sam snapped.
"You have to move on, Sam," the Latina shouted. "You can't do that with Yentl calling you every five minutes." As to prove her point the phone in Santana's hand began to vibrate again. "You answer it and tell her you're done, Sam." She held out the device for him.
He quickly jerked the phone out of her hand and pressed the ignore button. "You're right," he replied. "I just, I need to do this in person. Help me pack her things?" Santana nodded. "Come by my apartment after my shift."
"I kind of like this look on you," Santana tossed over her shoulder. "You could definitely be in some little band that complains about broken hearts and promises: all of that good shit."
"You flatter me," he called out to her before she left the building.
Once she had gone he looked through his phone and went to his pictures, scrolling through the various ones of him and Rachel. With a final breath he hovered over the delete all button for a second before tapping the screen and efficiently erasing any trace of Rachel from his phone.
He looked at the clock mounted on the wall. He couldn't understand why they stayed open until nine. No one came by after five. He used to always get the good shifts, make a lot of money. Since dating Rachel though he asked for all the late shifts so that he could spend more time with her.
Stupid was what it was. Now he was poor and getting notices from his landlord.
He walked over to one of the guitars in the corner of the room and picked it up. It had been a while since he had played the instrument. Rachel hadn't been lying when she had said she hadn't heard him sing in forever. He missed being all about the music. He guessed it was something he could get back now that he was living the single life.
He strummed the guitar and winced at the sound that came out. It was rough and didn't flow at all. It wasn't like someone could forget how to play the guitar though. He continued trying for a few minutes before it all came flowing back. His fingers weren't used to the beating but everything else sounded good to him.
Thirty minutes without stopping his various rifts and chord progression had him wanting food. He be begrudgingly set the guitar back on its stand and made his way to the break room long enough to get a bag of chips and a Coke. Unhealthy as it was it had been what he had lived off of that past week.
He took the Cool Ranch Doritos and his drink back to the main room and perched himself on the stool before popping the bag open and grabbing a chip. "I have missed thee," he spoke while looking at the chip. "And now I shall eateth you, nom nom," he tossed the chip back and chewed slowly before glancing at the wall clock again.
The door to the shop was brutally pushed open, much to his confusion. Immediately he felt the lone potato chip threatening to make its way back up. He tossed back some of the Coke to moisten his dry throat. "Hey, man," the blue eyed man greeted. It made him want to punch something.
"Jesse," Sam greeted. Truly God hated him. There was no other explanation for the way his life was turning out. "What can we do for you?" The curly haired guy looked around the room for a moment before waltzing over to Sam.
"You look rough, Sam." Sam sighed. "You alright?"
No. "Yeah. Just not really sleeping. Business is kind of bad too so I'm not getting enough hours. Gotta find a new way to pay the bills." He sincerely hoped that Jesse bought it. He was never an actor-that was all Rachel.
"You know that you could always ask us for help, dude. I know how much Rach cares about you. I wouldn't her to have to worry about you." Sam wanted to bash his head against the wall. He had never had a problem with Jesse, not a real one anyway. The guy was genuinely a nice person. He hadn't ever done anything to treat Rachel poorly.
It was a part of the reason he couldn't imagine the guy cheating as the tabloids had been claiming him too. Then again, they also claimed that Rachel had been…and that wasn't a lie. "Are you and Rachel all right?" Jesse asked, bringing him out of his thoughts.
"Um, yeah," Sam replied before taking another sip of his drink. "Why you asking?" Jesse's shoulders seemed to have hunched over as a broken expression crossed his face.
"She's been really out of it this past week. She's always, I don't know, she isn't here with me. I'll be trying to talk to her and she just spaces out." Sam chuckled awkwardly.
"That's just how Rachel is though, isn't it?"
"I don't know, Man. Is it? She may be physically checking out on me now, but emotionally? I don't think she's been there for a while." Sam watched in confusion as the guy he wanted to hate more than anything tried to keep himself together.
Sam had been the cause of that dude's pain. His selfish need to be with Rachel had totally broken up a marriage. "You weren't cheating on Rachel." Sam whispered, a statement more than a question.
"What?" Jesse's head jerked up. "Where did you hear that?" Sam pushed his glasses up on his nose and ignored the daggers being repeatedly stabbed into his heart.
"Rachel found it written in some paper last week. It said you were cheating with some girl from your play." Sam watched as Jesse begin to put the pieces together, albeit wrong pieces, but who was he to tell him otherwise?
"That's what wrong with her. She thinks I'm having an affair." Sam shrugged his shoulders. "You're an awesome guy, Sam. Thanks," Jesse replied before going towards the door.
"Dude, is there something you needed from here?" Jesse looked confused for a moment before laughter began to spill from his lips.
"Totally forgot. I was here about the piano that we still haven't gotten." Sam sighed.
"I've only reminded Rachel every day for the past month," the blond responded. Jesse grinned sheepishly.
"That's my Rachel for you though." Sam fought the urge to gag. Rachel should have been his. "You guys can just deliver it to the apartment tomorrow though, okay?" Sam nodded before pulling out a legal pad from under the counter and leaving instructions for the boss man.
"Will do, Jesse." Jesse made his way to the door before Sam had the urge to call out to him. "Hey," he shouted. Jesse turned around slowly. "Take care of Rachel, alright?" He nodded in confusion before waving awkwardly and leaving the store behind. "I hate my life," Sam grumbled.
He unlocked the door to the apartment before pushing the door open lightly and easing inside. He shut the door behind him before hanging his keys up. He trudged to the bedroom and took off his shoes before heading back towards the kitchen.
"Hey," he called out to the brunette working furiously over the stove. He watched in amusement as she shrieked before turning around to face him. "Cooking something good?" Rachel nodded weakly. He sighed as he ran his fingers through curly hair. The brunette had gotten pale and fragile looking over the week he had been away. It hadn't made any sense as to why she looked so broken. "Rach," he whispered as he noticed tears welling up in her eyes. She launched across the room and in an instant she was wrapped in his arms. "I know about the affair," he whispered.
"Jesse," she sobbed before pulling away from his embrace. "I don't know how to explain," she offered. His brows furrowed in confusion.
"You don't have to explain anything. You have to believe me when I say that the tabloids were lying. Laura, my co-star, she is married. Also, it's to a girl so you gotta believe me here," he offered with a grin and a squeeze to her shoulders. "I mean, I know I'm very attractive, but even I don't think I could get her to switch teams."
"I believe you," she managed to get out in between sobs and gulps of air. They fell to the floor in a pile of limbs as he rocked her back and forth. "How did you know I knew about the rumors?" She questioned, unsure of whether or not she was glad Jesse had been talking about his apparent affair.
"I saw Sam earlier." He couldn't ignore the way she stiffened in his arms. "Are you two alright? He looked really bad." Rachel said nothing but he could hear her trying to control her breathing. When it became obvious she wasn't going to say anything he continued pushing forward. "I told him that you were kind of spaced out. He told me that it was probably because you were worried about me cheating."
"Yeah," she replied weakly for the sake of saying something.
"I love you too much to ever think about doing that," he replied with a kiss to her forehead. He frowned in confusion when she only began to, once again, cry into his chest.
"What the hell is this?" Santana shouted while holding a sweater by the tips of her fingers-as though she were going to catch a fatal disease from the shirt. Sam looked up before a small smile crept onto his face.
"It was Rachel's good luck sweater," he replied. Santana snorted before throwing it into the box. "Wait, I want to keep that," he added.
"Uh no. Even if you two weren't over I wouldn't let you keep that disaster." Sam frowned before going through various pictures of him and Rachel. He didn't want to get rid of them, but he knew Santana would force him to.
He smiled as he looked at the one currently in his hand. They were in his apartment watching Funny Girl for the one billionth time. Her hair was thrown up into messy pony-tail. He looked like he had a hangover, but they were together and happy. He pocketed the picture before Santana could see before flipping through the rest and handing them over. Santana looked content with their work before she shut the box and taped it shut. "I call this operation a success," she stated triumphantly. "Now, go drop these off at the Midget's house and we'll finish off the night right."
"I don't know about this Santana," he replied. "What if Jesse is still there?" Santana shrugged her shoulders.
"No es mi problema." He sighed before grabbing the box out of her arms and making his way out of the door.
The summer air hit him like a bitch slap in the face when he stepped outside. It was nearing one o'clock in the morning. He worried that Rachel would be asleep. Or even worse that Jesse would know what was going on.
On the plus side he had thirty minutes to prepare himself for what he was going to do.
Thirty minutes later he found himself looking up at their building without any idea of what he was going to say or do. He pulled his phone out of his pocket and dialed Rachel's number. "Hello," a groggy voice whispered. Instantly he melted. He hadn't heard that voice in a week. He wanted to plead with her to forgive him and tell her that he wanted to just run away together.
But number one, he was a dude. Number two, she was married to a guy that obviously cared about her.
"Rachel," he willed his voice not to waver. "Are you awake?" He felt like an idiot. She was obviously awake. He heard shuffling on the other line as though she were truly waking herself up.
"Yes. Oh God, where are you? I've been so worried about you." He felt a lump rise in his throat. He swallowed thickly.
"I'm standing, well like, right outside your building. Is Jesse there?" He waited for a few seconds.
"Yes," she replied. He knew he would be. A husband usually is. It still didn't stop his heart from hurting. "Come to the elevator," she added before hanging up.
He made his way inside the familiar building before finally walking over to the elevators. He watched as the floor numbers lit up lower and lower until finally the elevator dinged and the doors opened. He felt his breath get caught in his throat. She looked almost sickly. She had dark circles under her eyes and the t-shirt she was wearing swallowed her whole. "Baby," she whispered while reaching out to run her hands over his face, "you look so bad." As her eyes began to mist over he knew it was a bad idea.
"Rachel, stop," he pleaded before stepping inside the elevator. "I need you to start taking better care of yourself. What's happened to you?" She scoffed before giving him a once-over.
"What happened to you?" Her voice was soft and timid, almost scared-like.
"You did," he replied before setting the box down in a corner. "That's yours," he offered while pointing to the box. "All of the stuff you left over at my apartment is in it. I can't keep it anymore. It hurts way too much." Her breath hitched as though she honestly hadn't known their relationship was over.
"What?" She squeaked as tears began to fall down her cheeks. He fought the urge to wipe them away and to press reassuring kisses in the place. "Why? Don't you love me anymore?"
"Of course I love you," he shouted before realizing he was losing his temper. "But I can't be with you like this anymore. It hurts. It hurts way too much. And you," his voice broke and that was it. The dam had opened and the tears fell. "You have a husband, Rachel. And he loves you. I can't do this to you. I can't do this to him. I can't do this to me." She reached out to cup his jaw.
"But I've been calling you to tell you…" She was silenced by his lips, softly moving against hers. It was a goodbye kiss and they both knew it. "No, Sam, wait, this is important, after we came back from our trip,"
"Rachel, let me go," he pleaded, interrupting her once again. "I'm done. I can't do this anymore. Maybe we can be friends again later on down the road. But you need to fix your marriage, and I need to fix my life."
He reached out blindly to press the lobby button and watched as the brunette caved in on herself. "I love you, Rachel," he whispered before stepping out of the elevator and away from his past.
"I'm meeting someone; I'll order when they get here." The older woman looked at him with a small smile before putting the pad of paper and pencil back in her apron and heading back to the counter to refill various customers' cups of coffee. He drummed his fingers over the surface of the table nervously before looking around the coffee shop.
He ran his fingers through his hair, which had finally gotten the much deserved haircut after two months of putting it off. No longer did he have locks that even girls envied; he missed it, sure, but he told himself that short hair made him look more mature.
He looked at his wrist once more to check the time. His watch was mocking him, really. Fifteen minutes had come and gone; he was certain he had been stood up.
But then he heard a chime go off from where a customer had entered. His eyes flickered over to the front of the store and he knew that it was her. It kind of had to be anyway. He waved awkwardly when eyes met his. He stood up and waited for her to walk over. "Hello," he whispered. "I'm obviously Sam," he chuckled while waiting for the girl to say something-anything.
"Nice to meet you, Sam," she replied. Her voice was deep, with a slight nasally tone to it. Her hair was as blonde as his had been before he had gotten Santana to help him dye it with a box he had bought at the local grocery store.
They both sat down before she picked up a small menu. He guessed maybe going to a diner wasn't exactly the best idea of a first date, especially when it was a blind date at that, but Santana had set everything up. "Santana told me that you worked at a magazine or something?" He asked, smiling when the girl's face lit up.
"I do. My last article was about an off-Broadway play that kept getting turned in for animal cruelty." Sam stroked his chin.
"Legally Blonde?" He guessed. He immediately knew he was completely off when he saw the girl in front of him tilt her head back in laughter. "Oh wait, that isn't on anymore. Rachel told me that a few years ago." He sobered up.
"Santana mentioned a Rachel to me." Sam sighed. He had done so well up until that moment. Really though, how was someone supposed to bring up a play or musical without him automatically thinking about the girl who had once upon a time been his one and only?
"I was in love with her," he replied with a shrug of his shoulders. "Have you never been so in love with someone that you knew there would be no possible way to move on if things fell apart?" He watched as a sad expression crossed the blonde's face.
"I have." Silence except for the chattering of the other customers was presented to them. "But I was wrong. I moved on," she flashed him a smile. He easily grinned back before waving over Karen, the older lady who had tried to serve him food countless times before his date had arrived.
"What can I get you two?" The gray-haired woman questioned with a grin. "Oh, you two make a mighty cute couple. Reminds me of my grandson and his girlfriend." Sam chuckled nervously.
"Thank you," was whispered from the girl in front of him. "I'll have the scrambled eggs and two pieces of bacon."
"And you, Sir?" The waitress asked while looking at Sam.
"The same thing. Two coffees," he added with a kind smile. Once Karen had walked away he returned his full attention to his date. "I've been single for a few months now. It was hard," he cleared his throat, "really hard at first. I think I'm okay now though," he added.
Really hard had been an understatement. It had been three months since he had seen Rachel. His phone number had been changed because the brunette had continued to text him. Several times she had showed up at his apartment demanding to be let inside because she had to talk to him. He refused to even answer the door. It wasn't that he quit loving her. God, he didn't know if it was possible at the time to not love her.
No, he just wanted to be selfish for a change. He wanted to live his life and not have to worry about being constantly depressed or upset over his love life. Being with Rachel was an emotional roller-coaster that even he couldn't handle anymore.
The brunette had undoubtedly been upset. A small part of him had hoped that she would have gotten a divorce immediately from Jesse after seeing that Sam was really gone. It hadn't happened-and so he had been forced to move on.
"I'm glad. Santana told me she had a guy in mind for me a few months ago. I thought she had been lying. Well, up until now anyway." Sam nodded.
"I was kind of messed up for a while. I'm all good now though." She nodded before pushing a piece of stray hair behind her ears.
"I'm glad," she replied with a slight blush. He smiled before leaning back in his seat and stretching. "You're easy on the eyes," she clarified.
"You're not so bad yourself, Quinn."