5 Times The Love!
When Sam and Blaine had broached the subject of this relationship, it had been obvious that Rachel and Sebastian were doing it for the people they loved. It had been obvious that the two of them were not as compatible, at least on paper, at least technically. It was obvious how the automatic pairings never seemed to land on the two of them naturally, how anything planned felt forced and sometimes uncomfortable. They were trying, that much was obvious, they probably tried too hard. Tried to overcompensate for what wasn’t there naturally. Rachel had resigned herself to never having that same connection with Sebastian, at least not in that way. Her old high school insecurities, wouldn’t let her pursue something that was going to be so blatantly one sided, wouldn’t let her face that potential rejection.
Only, one Friday night her date with Blaine was cancelled. He was forced to an after party Rachel didn’t want to go to. She’d tried instead, to stay out as late as possible, to not intrude on Sam and Sebastian’s time together. She’d figured by 11pm they’d either be out or in the bedroom at least. That she was safe to return home and wait for Blaine. Only, as she quietly opened the door to the apartment, they weren’t in bed, although it was highly unlikely they were going to notice her.
She watched, as they kissed, frozen to the spot as the two of them shared a tender kiss while putting the plates away. Fully clothed and innocent, Sam had slapped Sebastian’s ass playfully, the latter tugging him in by his belt loops to share a kiss so filled with feeling, Rachel struggled to breathe. She watched, silently as they pulled apart, as Sebastian looked at Sam with eyes filled with more love than Rachel had seen before, as he cupped the side of his face tenderly, the following kiss soft and chaste. It was beautiful, a raw, uncensored look at the capacity for love Sebastian had, the side he himself didn’t even know he possessed.
She knew then, she loved him. She knew then, she would give anything to have Sebastian look at her like that just once.
“You’re wrong.” Her voice was high and obnoxious, set in stubbornness she sometimes wished she didn’t posses. “I don’t understand why you can’t just apologise, it’s like you don’t even care.”
She deliberately grabbed the television remote, turning off the movie he was pretending to watch in a bid to ignore her and the current fight. They were alone and once again fighting on what was supposed to be their time together. She didn’t know if the fights were simply misplaced passion neither of them knew what to do with, or if it was simply that they weren’t compatible in any way.
Her fear of the latter was what prompted her to continue the fighting, to continue with at least some form of communication. Because passion was something, passion meant there were some feelings there at least.
He was so completely infuriating. Actively refusing to admit that he was wrong, because of course he was. If he wasn’t, that would mean she was and that was completely and utterly ridiculous. She almost screamed in frustration as he refused to concede, as the stubborn lines set into his face and Rachel could almost predict the exact moment he was going to stand up and leave. As he always did. As he was prone to do.
Rachel was waiting for the day, he wouldn’t be able to walk out on her, that he’d be completely unable to make himself do it.
That day wasn’t today.
As he left the apartment, Rachel could feel the tears pooling in her eyes, the desperate tears she couldn’t let fall at risk of them never stopping. Her eyes caught the window, spotted the tell tale signs of frost and his untouched jacket hanging by the door. She couldn’t help it as she donned her own, slipping feet into shoes, his jacket curled over her arm as she ran out of the apartment. She wasn’t sure where she was going to find him, if she could even attempt to know where to look without asking for help.
Only as she entered the lobby of the building, he was there. Leaning against the wall next to the elevator, a look of fond exasperation on his face as he held his hand out silently for his jacket. As if he’d known she’d bring it, as if he’d expected it and was willing to give her this small thing. She’d handed it over silently, both still determined to continue the stubborn anger. But she knew in that moment that they knew one another more than they thought, she knew right then that the fights would never be due to a lack of feeling on her part.
Because she was in love with him.
Rachel was overwhelmed, with life, with trying to maintain a healthy relationship with three men, and with work. Work was something she’d never expected to feel anything but positive about, but with eight shows a week, she was barely getting to spend any time at home. When she did, she was stressed to the point that none of that time was good or pleasant. She’d reduced Sam to the point of avoiding her on more than one occasion, had fought with Blaine every night for a week and her schedule was so opposite to Sebastian’s, she rarely saw him at all.
She hated being the woman who came home and yelled about the state of the kitchen, or the fact no laundry had been done. Usually to Blaine and Sam the times she did manage to get home. She hated the fact she was constantly resenting picking up after them, when usually she loved it. She loved taking care of her boys, she loved their life together and wouldn’t trade it for anything. She was terrified that this new mood was a permanent fixture in her life, that she was going to remain overwhelmed for the foreseeable future. That she was going to ruin everything.
She got home one night, expecting everyone to be in bed, dreading the load of laundry she knew needed doing, only to open the door and find the apartment spotless. Blaine and Sam were nowhere to be found, but there was a suspicious looking card on the table that she thought might be an apology.
But he was there. Sebastian.
He was there, holding out a glass of wine invitingly, the sound of a bath running in the background and Rachel burst into immediate tears. To his credit, despite how uncomfortable he obviously was with her emotion, his arms wrapped around her, voice low and murmuring reassurances she’d never expected to hear from him and within ten minutes Rachel felt like a whole new woman.
After her bath, after talking with Sebastian for hours over anything and everything, after he’d fallen asleep, his legs tangled with hers on the couch. She whispered quietly, a small smile on her face.
“I love you.”
She’d made it a habit of turning up to Sebastian’s work with lunch, their work schedules clashing as they did, she wanted to make sure she saw him. He always rolled his eyes as though she was completely ridiculous, yet he’d always managed to clear his appointments for that hour anyway, so Rachel took that as a Sebastian sign to keep coming.
She usually waited in the lobby for him, bagged lunches in hand, with all his favourites. It was always a nice to see his face when he opened it, as though he was constantly surprised she remembered these things, that she knew what he liked and disliked and cared enough to put it into action. Today, she was a little early, over eager to see him and complain about their neighbour who they both despised. Eager to see him, to receive the kiss he always bestowed upon her as a greeting. Rachel had been learning quickly that Sebastian would very rarely show his feelings with words, he was a man of action and she lived for those moments that he’d show her she was more than just an annoying necessity in keeping Sam and Blaine.
Skipping through the lobby, she easily made her way to Sebastian’s office. Hopefully, he’d have some free fancy wine they could enjoy lunch with. That was another perk of turning up to lunch with Sebastian, she always managed to get first dibs. Only, as she stood outside the door, she heard voices inside. Sebastian’s, she recognised instantly, charming and strangely apologetic. She didn’t mean to listen, at least that’s what she told herself and what she’d certainly tell Sebastian if he caught her, but the idea of listening to him working was too good to pass up.
Only, what she heard instead wasn’t Sebastian working. What she heard instead was an apologetic tone as he informed them he couldn’t see them right now as he was expecting his girlfriend for lunch.
Her. He was expecting her for lunch. He was turning down meetings, or clients (she wasn’t going to pretend she knew how his job worked), because he was expecting her for lunch. It took her a minute to gain control of her beating heart, to push down the overwhelming feelings of love for this man before she pushed the door open with a bright smile.
“Afternoon boys!” She announced cheerfully, shooting Sebastian a small wink as she held her hand out to the unfamiliar man. “I’m Rachel Berry, Sebastian’s girlfriend. It’s a pleasure to meet you.”
It had been unexpected, but certainly not unwanted. Rachel had never expected him to pursue a physical relationship with her, she’d resigned herself to the fact that just wasn’t what their relationship was going to be. She’d settled for being his girl in other ways, for experiencing a whole new kind of relationship that didn’t rely on the physical. But as she’d become more comfortable, as she’d thrown away her insecurities and realised that it wasn’t a personal attack against her, he’d been drawn in. She’d been dancing, carefree, happy and only slightly tipsy when his arms had wrapped around her, murmuring those words in her ear.
He was ready, he wanted her.
Rachel had thought her heart stopped, it was so hard to draw breath, to think, All she was aware of was him, was those arms around her, that mouth on her in a way that didn’t feel forced. That didn’t feel as though he was simply doing his duty. As her fingers laced with his, leading him to the bedroom, dimmed lights and heavy, nervous breaths, Rachel felt like a virgin again.
She’d felt shy and nervous as she’d let her dress fall to the floor, hands trembling as deft fingers popped the buttons of his shirt. It had been a slow, careful slide of material over shoulders, reverent touches to the newly revealed skin. She’d never seen him like that, exposed and vulnerable in a way he’d never been with her before. He was beautiful, he was her unexpected man who kissed her with a newly realised passion, who touched as though he was never going to get to do it again. He was everything she’d wanted and everything she’d been missing.
Her skin burned under his touch, gasps escaping through parted lips, her back arching with pleasure, in a bid to be closer, nearer, together. Her hands tugged him further against her, nails leaving half moon indents in the skin of his back. It was different, devoid of the desperate, rough passion she’d seen with the others. It was slow and careful, filled with feeling and unexpected passion. She murmured vague proclamations of love against his lips, breathed his name before his lips captured hers once more and as long legs wrapped around a slim waist, as they connected in a way she’d never dared to hope for, she couldn’t help the feelings that flooded her.
Tears filled her eyes, heels digging into the small of his back as she was overwhelmed with so much feeling she couldn’t put words to it. Couldn’t find the correct thing to say, couldn’t find words that would do justice to the way her heart wanted to burst. She didn’t have words for everything he was to her, to everything they were together. She didn’t have words for how grateful she felt, how lucky and privileged to see this side of him, to feel this connection and experience the slow burn of developing feelings. So as she pressed her lips to the corner of his mouth, as she breathed with him, she murmured the only words that could express even half of what she felt.
“I love you Sebastian Smythe.”