Pairing: Puck and Quinn friendship (with a hint of relationship - if you blink, you miss it)
Rating: T for language
Word Count: 3,270
Spoilers: Only up to 1x13, otherwise you're good
Summary: 'You know you're losing him right?' That was how it began. A series of conversations that take place, showing the progression - both the ups and the downs of a relationship.
At the end of the day, there are some things you just can't help but talk about. Some things we just don't want to hear, and some things we say because we can't be silent any longer. Some things you say cause there's no other choice. Some things you keep to yourself. And not too often, but every now and then, some things simply speak for themselves.
- Meredith Grey
‘You know you’re losing him right?’
That was how it began.
It was undignified and hurried the way this mess began. It was nothing short of slopping: blue wine coolers that stained her lips, the bed of his truck, and a few jerks of his hips and it was all over. And her life was changed forever.
There were no whispered words, no lingering promises, just a simple, ‘Later Q,’ as he dropped her off at her house that night. Neither of them could have known what they’d just begun.
But the change was permanent.
‘Quinn’s pregnant, she’s keeping the baby…’
That was how it became real.
He listened to his best friend choke out the words, his puppy dog, far too innocent to be sixteen eyes filled with tears, his shoulders hunched and broken.
His head had spun as Finn’s phrase fell between them in the air, and it had slowly sunk in. Quinn was pregnant. The Quinn that he had unceremoniously deflowered.
He no longer had time to console Finn and instead, turned on his heel and bolted.
He found her strutting to Trig, arms gathered close to her chest, offering her subjects a standard Quinn Fabray look that simply stated ‘you’re not worthy.’
It didn’t look like anything had changed, but he knew better. In fact, everything had changed.
He rounded on her, offering a crude, ‘Sup, MILF?’
In an instant the façade fell, crumbling before his eyes and for a fleeting moment he saw a scared little girl beneath it all. But as fast as she appeared she was gone. Quinn’s lip curled into a snarl and she hurled insults at him. He gave as well as he got until she hit a nerve.
‘You’re just a Lima loser.’
Like Hudson wasn’t, like Hudson was going to make something out of his dumb fuck ass, like Hudson was going any where better in this world than he was.
She was keeping the kid. His kid. She was keeping it, but pretending it wasn’t even his.
This shit was not okay.
‘You fucking bastard!’
That was how it careened out of control.
Finn was charging towards him, thundering through the door, his lumbering frame suddenly seeming hulking and threatening as he hurtled himself at Puck. His hands were balled into tight fists and his face was red and scrunched up.
Instinctively, Puck took a step back, raising his hands, but Finn was upon him before he could form a defence.
Finn’s fist slammed into his jaw and it knocked Puck off his feet. For one bewildered moment he considered fighting back, because seriously, what the hell was this dude’s problem?
‘Quinn! You fucked my girlfriend!’
And then he knew. Finn knew the truth.
Puck suddenly lost the urge to retaliate, god only knows he deserved whatever Finn was going to give him.
‘I can’t fucking believe you!’
Finn punctuated each word with a punch and the girl’s in the corner whimpered.
‘Stop it! Please!’ Quinn begged.
‘Stop! Stop now!’ came Ms Pilsbury.
And then suddenly there were hands, Mr Schue, Matt, Mike, he didn’t know who, pulling Finn away. Finn kicked and still attempted to lash out and it took all Mr Schue had to keep the bigger boy held back.
‘I’m done with you!’ he shrieked, ‘I’m done with all of you!’
Puck knew that nothing good would come of this. In that instant, as Finn disappeared, Quinn crumpled to a heap into a chair, burying her tearful face in her hands as she sobbed. Rachel – wide eyed and terrified, fled the room and the rest of their friends broke into hushed, feverish whispers.
He looked around at them all, torn between the vague tug to Quinn and the throbbing of his jaw, his sole desire to be out of this terrible room.
He turned on his heel, running a hand over his head. He was out of here.
Later, he found Quinn shrunken into a tiny space, one hand resting protectively on the swell of her stomach, her head bowed, a curtain of blonde hair falling across her face.
This was the moment, the moment to man up, the moment to become everything his father wasn’t.
He offered her everything – the rest of his life, his future, for this baby’s benefit and she turned him down. She said she wanted to do it alone, that she needed to be alone. His dad had never been around: his mom had sent him out to buy milk and instead he’d found himself a new family. He’d spent his whole life wondering what’d happened to the guy he only thought he remembered, and whether this was convenient or not, he wasn’t going to let the same shit happen to his kid.
‘So... I guess I should be your boyfriend or some shit...’
That was how they started something new.
Quinn was standing in his living room, her eyes rimmed red, her cheeks blotched and stained with tears that had barely dried, her one menial bag of possessions behind her.
She had appeared on his doorstep that night, mere hours after Sectionals, shaking and broken, drenched to the bone. His mother had hopped to the girl’s aid, pulling her inside the house without another word. She took in the baby bump and the blonde hair and met her son’s eyes. He had nodded without another word.
She didn’t need to know anymore and hurried to find her a dry change of clothes and a mug of warm milk. From that moment, Quinn Fabray began living with them.
Later that night, while his mother bustled upstairs setting up a fold out mattress on the floor of the spare room, Quinn and Puck stood opposite one another in the lounge room.
‘What do we do now Puck?’ Quinn rasped quietly.
Puck shoved his hands in the pockets of his jeans and shrugged noncommittally, ‘I dunno...’
‘Your mother knows Puck. Your mother knows that I’m having your baby, her grandchild. Me, as in, not Jewish, teenage slut.’
‘Hold up, my mom isn’t thinking that shit!’ Puck interjected defensively.
‘Puck, what do we do? Your mother...’
‘My mom’s cool okay? She’s giving you a bed and whatever, she’s not thinking anything.’
Puck shook his head, running a hand over his mohawk raggedly, ‘Look, Q, what do you want me to say?’
Quinn looked around, checking for his sister or mom, ‘Look, I’ve made it clear that you weren’t my first choice, that I didn’t want to wind up here, but I have and...’
‘Then why the hell don’t you go back to Hudson?’ Puck sniped, her words settling on another nerve.
Quinn shook her head, ‘I’m sorry Puck, I don’t mean it like what. What I mean is...’
She took a deep breath, grabbing his hands to settle them over her bump, ‘Thankyou. Thankyou for growing up for me, for offering everything you have. It means a lot to me to know that... to know that my baby with have a dad okay?’
Beneath his hands the baby stirred and he froze. It was real, this whole situation. Quinn was having a baby. His baby, and he had to do this right.
‘I guess I should be your boyfriend or some shit...’ Puck mumbled.
Quinn arched an eyebrow indignantly, her lips pursing and he knew she was going to retaliate sharply.
‘I just mean, like, maybe we should be a couple so the kid has parents or whatever.’
‘Look, you’re living me with, you’re going to school with me, you’re having a kid with me. Sounds like a couple right?’
Quinn rolled her eyes, ‘Whatever Puckerman.’
And from then on, they were a couple. That’s just how they rolled.
What ensued was months of loitering in the mall together, shopping for flat pack cribs and strollers and changing tables and the seemingly endless parade of crap that this baby demanded. There were nights in front of the TV, Quinn’s feet in Puck’s lap as they ate Chinese, Sarah sitting on the ground in front of them, humming away to herself. There were the long hours when Quinn would read passages of baby books to Puck and his face would contort in horror and the perfect moments when it would just be the two of them, the baby kicking gently against their joined hands. It was a nice reality really.
‘We’re doing this wrong aren’t we?’
And that was how it ended.
One day they were at the mall together, searching for another piece of baby stuff, when they stumbled across one of Glee’s best-kept secrets.
Whenever they went out, nobody ever saw Rachel Berry. It seemed that she never left the house. Except this time. And if anyone else knew, she was going to be in trouble.
‘Oh my god Puck look, it’s Man hands with a guy,’ Quinn whispering, elbowing Puck.
His head spun around, his eyes landing on Rachel who was sitting in a secluded corner of food court, laughing and smiling with another guy.
‘Who the hell’s that dude?’ Puck bristled.
Quinn pursed her lips, ‘I dunno. I don’t really care either, let’s go.’
‘No! I wanna see who this guy is!’ Puck returned, ‘I’m gonna go over!’
‘Puck no!’ Quinn hissed, ‘She’s obviously not telling anyone for a reason.’
‘Is that like her boyfriend or whatever? Jesse St Gay or whatever the shit girl name he has?’
Puck fell petulantly into one of the chairs nearby, folding his arms across his chest, ‘I’m gonna spy on them.’
Quinn rolled her eyes, sensing that he wasn’t going to be budged, ‘You are so retarded,’ she announced, sitting heavily into the seat beside him.
For a moment they were silent, watching Rachel and Jesse. The brunette’s face was positively glowing as she curled into his shoulder, his arm around her, pulling her closer to him. They were laughing, his lips brushing reverently through her hair. She chattered to him, and Quinn was struck how different she looked. With this guy she looked... happy. And normal. She really loved this guy.
‘I don’t like this guy. He’s obviously a huge homo,’ Puck announced, ‘Me and Finn could totally beat his scrawny ass up.’
He looked over at Quinn, where her head was cocked, resting in her open palm. Her eyes were wistfully, staring at them pensively.
‘Yo Q. Have you returned to the mother ship or whatever?’
Her eyes snapped back to him and she shook her head.
‘We’re doing this wrong aren’t we?’ she mused.
Puck stared at her blankly and she sighed.
‘This. Us. We’re doing it all wrong.’
‘What do you mean?’
‘Look at them Puck, they... they love each other. Like really, really love each other.’
‘They look like they love to braid each other’s hair,’ he snorted.
‘I know that this is a relationship with you so it’s not going to be boxes of chocolates and bouquets and whatever, but... this isn’t right. We don’t feel like that about one another...’
‘Look Puck, I’m not in love with you,’ she said bluntly, retracting as soon as she saw the stung look on his face, ‘I mean... I love you, but in the... we’ve been friends since middle school kind of way. In the, you’re my big brother, you beat up on all those guys who were a little too eager way. I love you like my family, and now... because of the baby, I spose you are my family, but... that’s all.’
Puck blinked balefully as Quinn finished her monologue, sucking in a deep breath. She bit her lip; suddenly worried she’d been too harsh. Puck’s shoulder’s slumped and he let out a sigh.
‘Okay... I can... I can handle that.’
‘Puck, I didn’t meant to hurt your feelings, I just... I don’t think we’re doing this right.’
‘So... let me get this straight, you... don’t want to be in a relationship with me?’
‘But what about the baby?’
‘Puck, if you want to be there for me and the baby, that’s great. I want you in my life with the baby. I just don’t want you to be my boyfriend any more.’
Puck’s eyes suddenly widened, ‘That was an option? Dude, why didn’t you tell me? I thought if I was gonna be the baby’s dad and not just a sperm donor I had to be your boyfriend! I didn’t realize this was an option!’
Quinn laughed, ‘No you moron! You’re a terrible boyfriend! Why would I want you to be my boyfriend?’
And suddenly he began to laugh as well. Their laughter mingled in the air, suddenly far more relaxed than they had been in a long time. Puck reached out, pulling Quinn closer to him, ruffling her hair affectionately and she realized that’s how it should have been all along. He was a good friend, and they were the kind she’d need closer to her soon.
‘The baby’s coming.’
That was how everything changed.
Quinn stood over him, shaking his shoulder, her eyes wide and crazy.
‘Get up Puck! Get up!’ she hissed, ‘The baby’s coming! Get up!’
She whimpering softly, her fingernails digging into the flesh of his shoulder as another contraction hit her.
The pain was enough to draw Puck from his sleep and he opened his eyes, ‘Fucking hell woman, go back to bed.’
‘Puck, the baby’s coming!’ she hissed again through gritted teeth, ‘Please, you need to take me to the hospital.’
Suddenly he sat bolt upright, terror coursing through his veins, ‘Are you sure? Like, that the baby’s coming an everything? How do you know?’
‘Well how about we put my contracting uterus inside of you for a minute and you can be the judge of it!’
Puck leapt out of bed, just out Quinn’s violent reach, ‘Okay then. To the hospital it is.’
He pulled a sweatshirt over his head, scuffing his feet into a pair of shoes, searching his dark room madly for his keys.
Shit. His kid. Quinn was having his kid. Now.
His hands began to shake and his heart rate sped up madly. This couldn’t be real. It just... couldn’t.
He grabbed Quinn’s hand, picking up her overnight bag from the bottom of his closet before leading her down the hall. He paused, sticking his head in through the doorway of his mom’s bedroom.
‘Ma? Quinn’s having her baby.’
His mother sat up, her face serious.
‘Okay, you take her to the hospital, I’ll be right behind after I wake up Sarah.’
Puck nodded, unable to say anything.
‘Noah, everything will be okay. Take good care of her and everything will be fine.’
He nodded again; suddenly afraid of what would happen if he opened his mouth. He wondered if he might cry.
‘Ma...’ he whispered, ‘I’m... I’m scared.’
‘I know baby, but you have to be strong for her okay?’
He inhaled deeply, ‘Okay, we’re off now.’
He stepped out of the room, gathering Quinn’s from where she was waiting at the top of the stairs, holding her hand tightly and helping her into the truck.
It was finally here.
‘It’s a girl.’
That’s how he became a new person.
The cry splintered the early morning air, bleating and loud as the baby made a sound for the first time ever.
That was his daughter. His daughter. That slimy, red and gross bundle that the doctor was holding was a real, living person that was a little bit of him.
Quinn began to cry, as she fell back against the pillows, her chest still heaving. Puck’s entire body was shaking and he sunk wearily into the chair beside her bed.
‘Oh my god...’ he murmured, ‘Oh... I...’
The doctor smiled kindly, returning in their vision, holding a little pink bundle, ‘Here she is,’
He laid the baby down on Quinn’s chest and her tears intensified.
‘She’s so beautiful,’ she gasped, cradling her tenderly, ‘She’s just so... perfect.’
Carefully, she eased the baby into Puck’s arms as the nurses bustled to tend to Quinn. Puck peered down at her, his hands suddenly feeling to large and too cumbersome for the precious cargo he was holding. He was filled with the overwhelming urge to hold her close, to shield her from all the things that existed beyond this room.
She was his baby. His daughter and until now he hadn’t realized how important that was.
‘I don’t want to hurt her,’ he voiced to Quinn and the roomful of doctors and nurses, ‘I’m afraid I’ll hurt her.’
He was surprised at how easy that truthful and open statement fell from his lips, but it was all he could think about. He was too big to care for something so small.
‘You won’t,’ Quinn assured softly, ‘I know you won’t.’
The room began to clear slowly and Quinn fell back against the bed wearily. Her eyes slipped shut and her breathing deepened and Puck held his daughter close. How had it been, something so small, a moment that had happened so fast had changed the very fabric of who he was?
A few hours later, Finn would appear at the door, carting a bunch of roses and a behemoth pink teddy bear. He would smile goofily, giving his first genuine smile to Puck since he found out that he wasn’t the father and simply say, ‘Hey.’
Quinn would smile softly at Finn, holding out one hand to him, ‘Finn, I wasn’t sure you’d come.’
Finn would sit on the edge of her bed, pushing the matted blonde hair of Quinn’s face, ‘Of course I would. I had to give her a present if I’m gonna be cool Uncle Finn or whatever.’Puck would excuse himself with a wistful glance, turning back to look at the pair, leaning into one another, finally getting back onto the path they belonged on.
He would wander the hospital, eventually ending up in the nursery, where his own daughter was among the babies. He would find Rachel standing up by the glass, staring at them all, a soft look on her face.
‘Hello Noah,’ she would greet gently, ‘Mazal Tov,’
‘Thanks Berry,’ he would reply, coming up to stand next to her.
‘Which one is she?’
‘There, Abigail Drizzle Puckerman,’ Puck would point out, ‘That’s my daughter.’
Rachel would beam up at him, her face glowing with happiness and pride.
‘She really is beautiful Noah. So very beautiful. And despite everything everyone says, I think you’re going to make a wonderful father.’
Rachel took his hand gently, slipping her tiny one into his. He leant against her gently and she stood there, supporting him as he took in the gravity, and the perfection, of that moment.
Things had changed so much, in such a short period of time. From the very beginning the end of one chapter of their lives, Puck’s life had been tipped on its head. But now, as they started a whole new, terrifying chapter in their lives, with new people, new challenges and new loves, he knew that whatever changes that came were going to be good and that maybe for once in his life, everything was going to be okay.