- TAGGING: Rachel Berry and Quinn Fabray
- LOCATION: Sidestreet by the movie theatre
- TIME FRAME: Friday night
- GENERAL NOTES: Quinn is out with the skanks and she’s ordered them to steal money from someone.
Having a hangover at 8pm was proving to be hard to deal with. Quinn pressed her fingers to her temples and rubbed slowly, trying to get rid of the nauseousness and the pounding at the forefront of her mind. “Why are you still standing here?” She finally spoke, turning her head to look over her shoulder at the three girls sharing a can of beer at the other side of the alley. They glared at her as they scattered out of the darkness and into the street light.
It smelled disgusting where she was stood, which probably wasn’t helping her headache or the nausea. Her black tank-top stuck to her in patches – either from sweat or other alcoholic fluids that she had been soaked by when they ran from the cops earlier. When she was alone, away from the other skanks, she could groan in disgust at the mess she had become. She didn’t want this. She hated feeling so disgusting and never knowing she was going to have to start running from cops because someone was stupid enough to reveal the fact they were drinking underage in the alley next to a shopping mart or a Chinese take-out. On top of that, when she stopped running it felt as though someone was pressing hard on her chest because the amount she smoked a day was having effects on her breathing.
Quinn leant against the wall and exhaled slowly. Despite hating this way of life so much, it felt like the only place left that she fit in. With the skanks, nobody spoke to her and no one had a hidden agenda. That meant that she didn’t get hurt. Above all else, Quinn refused to be hurt again. She heard people arguing nearby and smiled. Finally, she thought. They needed some more cigarettes and Quinn needed a bed for the night as her mom was kicking her out, so she sent the skanks off to steal some money from the first random person they could find.
Running a hand through her messy, and slightly greasy, pink hair, she pushed off of the wall and started towards the street. As she listened to her skanks demanding money, her eyebrow started to furrow. The voice answering them back was familiar. It took a few more moments and Quinn’s heart dropped. “Fuck.” She whispered, rounding the corner to see two skanks holding back the one person in the world she didn’t want to see right now. “Damn it.” She muttered again, almost turning and walking back to her space by the dumpster. She waited for a moment, with her back to the scene.“For God’s sake, Rachel.” She groaned, turned on her heels and started walking towards the fight.
“Basically, what you’ve been trying to declare on this thirty-minute phone-call that has resolved absolutely nothing at the moment, is that you don’t want to pick up your tired girlfriend and brother from a dark and lonesome parking lot of a community-theater showing area because you’re watching a moronic football game with Noah and the other guys?”
“Rach, babe, it’s the game.”
The annoyed and shuffled-up brunette sighed loudly enough for him to hear through the small cell-phone, and turned her head back over to Kurt, who was too busy examining the scarf wrapped around his neck to bother caring about the ridicule-worthy conversation she was sharing with her boyfriend of some time now, who had been explaining for the past long and dull minutes that he was about to miss the best parts of his sports-involved marathon and she could call anyone else to take care of the same deed. But she had responded with the fact that she hadn’t phoned anyone else from her limited-friend list. She had called him. Either way, the main point of the subject provided was clear and right on the answer-book of things Rachel knew beforehand without needing much feed-back from others close to her. He wasn’t going to pick her up because the two had shared an earlier fight the day before about the future ahead and this was his way of slamming that point right into her face without pity that homeless and dangerous men were around every corner, and stared at Rachel as if she was a tasty, eatable, slice of delectable cake that would be pounced on at any moment. What a lovely night this had cut out to be.
“I can’t believe you’re actually partaking in this ludicrous act of mindless circle-over-circle reasoning to turn around a pointless argument we were collided into the day before, into not giving Kurt and I a ride back from where we are currently located. Sure, I understand you have shown to be a bit lacking in manners of seeing the point of view from a women’s emotional state, but you have no idea what I’m going through, Finn. The last painful thing I need to attain right now is pique at having to sleep over-night at some dis-tasteful, repulsive, destination where strange occurrings’ have taken place under a repeated pattern of murder and recent killings. You need to come pick us up. Now,” Rachel hissed into the phone, catching Kurt’s familiar tone of voice talking to someone on his own cell. She was broken out of her thoughts of attempting to silently listen and catch a hint of who he was speaking to, when the clueless boy on the other line had began to yell out and clap loudly with the rest of his viewing-members at whichever home they were at, and Rachel crossed her arms and looked up at the blue-painted sky with little patience left to add. “Finn.. are you still there?”
“Look, Rach, I have to go. You’re not going to believe what happened with this one game. It’s incredible. Seriously. Anyway, call me back during the commercial-break if you guys haven’t found anyone to drive you until than. Love you - SEE? What did I tell you? What did I tell you? God, you guys are losers for not believing me. Extra point for Hudson, guys. - talk to you later.”
“N-No, wait! Listen to me! You have to listen to me! Finn..” Rachel muttered under her breath now. She really wanted to go home. She was about to possibly think about calling the Berry men to pick her up, knowing that they would say yes without a moment’s hesitation but not wanting to disturb them either, when Kurt tapped on her shoulder from behind and raised his eyebrows at her distressed response of shrugging her shoulders as to find out what had happened with his earlier phone-call. He walked closer over to where she was standing, with an un-moved expression on her face, when he finally fully faced her with a small tug of a smile at the corner of his lips.
“Well, Blaine’s coming. Just talked to him. He did get mildly upset I called him during his re-watching of American Idol, and in the middle of when J-Lo was judging a singing opponent, but he’s coming. Even if his back-seat is really tiny, I’m sure we can squeeze you in there, Rachel. I mean, you’ll be a little squished and uncomfortable for a second or so, but we’ll be able to arrive home without any other issu-“
“Kurt, I think It would be a better decision if I walked,” Rachel told him quietly, visibly bothered that her own boyfriend hadn’t even wanted to give her a drive-back to her house and the fact that she would rather endure creepy glances by perverted strangers and such rather than being crammed into the back-space of Blaine’s mini-car, that had been obviously only designed for two people at the most. She couldn’t believe that he had been paying more attention on celebrating a sporting-event rather than his exasperated girlfriend. By now, Rachel Berry was done for the day and didn’t want to think anymore.
“Rach, I’m not going to let you walk all alone by yourself to-“
“I’ll enlighten dad and daddy to set out a search for me if I become lost in a haze than, Kurt,” Rachel responded jokingly, tilting her head to the side and yawning without a care that there might be serious trouble lingering, just looking for her to stop at the right avenue and attack. “I’ll look at the clothing-stores we passed earlier on too, if their closing time hasn’t passed and they’re still available for purchasing-hours. Just trust me, lovey, I’ll be fine,” she tried to convince him, not realizing how much of a mistake that soon would be presented to be. “Really.”
Kurt seemed to be at a loss for words and looked torn at the suggestion of leaving his best friend, but gazed ahead at the stopping vehicle that had driven right up to them, Blaine signaling for him and Rachel to enter the huffing vehicle. With a look from the tiny performer that basically said, “Get in or I’ll push you inside,” he rolled his eyes and quickly entered the barely-working automobile with a hesitant type of movement, still staring at Rachel’s place as the car sped up and drove away with not even a chance for them to wave a goodbye. As she walked along-side others who were either listening to their music devices or rapidly texting, she was absolutely sure that she knew where she was walking ahead now and discovered streets that deemed to be already-seen and discovered with a direction that would hopefully not cause her to call her two dads this late of an hour. The thinking, pixie-like, over-achiever was confident that this was the right track and path to follow in order to reach her far-off neighborhood, and grinned a little to herself as she thought about how she still hadn’t needed anyone to help her. She was Rachel Barbra Berry. Once she set her mind up to something, she knew how to reach the goal.
But she also had a gift for expecting. Rachel usually could gather the emotion in a room if someone was uncomfortable, lost in thought, a terrific listener, doubtful, had a piece of hope left, angered, or just didn’t care to be in the state of mind they were in a particular day and didn’t want to hold a lengthy conversation. What Rachel couldn’t expect was when a person, or a group of people for that matter, would decide to bring violence or physical harm to anyone or her. Which was why she croaked out a high-pitched squeak and could only flap her hands around with no control over what was exactly happening, when two snickering girls dressed in black seemed to shove her down onto the ground and one of them grasped her little purse that she had been hanging onto tightly ever since she had ended that useless talk with Finn, and started to throw out her personal belongings and her mirror-compact behind her shoulder, almost growling at Rachel when she couldn’t find what she had been searching for.
“Where’s the money, midget?” The frightening red-head that had been pulling her down tightly by her hands and who had shoved her onto the ground now demanded, her tone persistent and cold with deep rage. “Where’s the money?” The dirty blonde who was basically ripping her purse to find whatever amount of dough Rachel was expected to have repeated with a wanting screech in her voice, the once-talkative Babs-enthusiast suddenly horrified after realizing she had spent all of her money at the cash-register in the inside of the theater room, she and Kurt buying whatever they had yearned for and giddy with excitement of seeing a newly-produced production of Funny Girl in her area, both of them mouthing all of the words and silently exchanging looks that told both of them they had been thinking similarly when they thought of how the main-actress who portrayed Fanny was all wrong for the role. She couldn’t believe she had been playing around and mimicking the actress’s vocal techniques a couple hours before, and that this attack was actually happening to her right now.
“I don’t have any money. Let me go this instant or I won’t be afraid to call the police,” She tried to say with a knowing tone that didn’t show her to be afraid, even if she desperately was in every fiber and energy that surrounded her body against the cold ground; her brown-colored eyes glossed with tears and her frown now trembling after hearing them both burst out laughing at her and cackle with delight at what she had lunged at them in the little imagining that they would become terrified and let her go. She was still a dreamer.
“She’s gonna call the police,” One of them chuckled in a faux-scared cry, resting their dirty hand on the very back of her neck, pressing harder against it and laughing harder when they heard her take an in-take of breath.
“Don’t touch me,” Rachel whispered, close to releasing a building sob that carried the tension and pain she was hitting as they teared her apart and led her to pray that she would be okay. “Please don’t hurt me anymore.”
Enough was enough. She managed to stand up a little bit more and push whichever one that had been next to her with her elbow, finally receiving a better look of how they looked and came to the abrupt memory of seeing them before with a gasp that she could finally breathe again and also the shock that someone she knew could be around as well. They were a part of the Skanks. But before she could even take in what was happening much too soon and all at once, she heard an accustomed soft voice speak out and she could only hear banging, crashing, and cursing next to her after a couple of moments filled with disbelief, but that didn’t stop her from being able to rise to her feet with a little bit of difficulty and feel a protective hold on the inside of her hand that was pulling for her to follow them, as soon as she did just that and pulled her strands of hair out of sight from her ability to actually see. The slipping voice spoke again, and Rachel turned back find the red-haired girl that she couldn’t believe was actually here, a girl who she had hoped to save from a conflicting situation and who was now assisting her with the most help she had ever longed for. Quinn Fabray.
The sight of Rachel Berry being pressed to the ground while the people that she had sent out there to harm someone were tearing away at the contents of her purse made Quinn’s stomach twist in knots. This was all okay when it wasn’t happening to people she knew. She could justify their actions a lot of the time, and prayed for forgiveness when things got rough, but she would never be able to forgive herself if they harmed the starlet Rachel Berry on her call.
With fists tight, she approached the scene. “Let her go.” She called out, anger laced in every syllable but managing to keep her volume low. She was shaking with adrenaline as one of the skanks turned quickly to face her and without seeing who it was or what they were about to do, Quinn grabbed the girl’s shoulders and brought her knee up with force, sending the girl falling to the floor and clutching her stomach. She had started now, so she couldn’t stop there or they’d beat both Rachel and herself senseless. “I said, let her go.” She repeated, grabbing one of the two holding Rachel down. She pulled on as much hair as she could grasp, pulling her down to the floor and with no hesitation bringing her foot into the writhing girl’s side a couple of times.
“What the hell, Fabr-” The dirty blonde that Quinn had a previous fued with took no time to strike a blow to Quinn’s face when she got the chance. It threw her off for all of a minute before she brought her own fist round in return and connected it to the blonde’s cheek. She collapsed on the floor and before she could get back on her feet, Quinn scrambled for Rachel’s hand. She pulled the terrified looking brunette up and started walking. She wasn’t even sure where, but they needed to be away from everything that had just happened.
She wanted to say something. The fact that she was associated with the girls that had just attacked Rachel made her want to justify herself, to prove that despite the events that Rachel just witnessed, Quinn wasn’t like them. She wanted to explain why she stepped in, why it hurt so much to imagine them hurting Rachel on her watch. Most of all, Quinn wanted to apologise. It was her demands they were following and if she hadn’t recognised Rachel’s voice, she would never have stepped in to stop it. In all her life, Quinn Fabray had never been so disgusted with herself.
“I’m sorry.” She murmured, still grasping Rachel’s hand and guiding her to a place unknown. It was poor. There were so many other things she wanted to say, and that was the best she could come up with. Biting down hard on her lip, Quinn stopped herself from saying anything else. She couldn’t afford to, and Rachel deserved more explanation than she could muster into words.
She let go of Rachel’s hand and without asking if she needed help, lifted the small girl up onto a short brick wall. She jumped over quickly, ignoring the fact that she scraped the heels of her hands doing so, and helped Rachel down on the other side. Quinn didn’t let herself pause to appreciate Rachel’s sweet scent, nor did she let herself get caught up in the fact she was holding Rachel Berry so close to her. Quinn simply grabbed Rachel’s hand again and began pulling her to the bottom of the slight hill they were on. They needed to be away from the skanks in a place that nobody knew about.
Quinn’s garden. She hid it from people because it was the one place in the world she could be herself and nothing around her would change without her say-so. They reached the bottom of the garden and Quinn sat Rachel down on the blanket under the tree. It had been a while since Quinn visited here - she didn’t feel like she deserved to be here when she wasn’t herself and right now, Quinn was not herself - so the blanket was muddy and she wanted to apologise for that too. Instead she took Rachel’s hands and turned them over in her own, checking for signs of harm. When she found none, she started inspecting the confused looking girl’s arms. Nothing. Quinn sighed in relief because if one of the skanks had wanted to brand Rachel like they did with several other victims, they would have carved the “S” into Rachel’s hand or arm.
Quinn barely recognised that Rachel might have spoken or complained about the fact Quinn just led her to a dark garden in the middle of nowhere. She lifted her head and let herself look into Rachel’s eyes for a long moment, her own mind starting to feel lost and completely broken. Her hand lifted, without consent from herself, and trailed her fingers across the red marks on Rachel’s neck. Her mind screamed at her to stop it. Hesitating, she dropped her hand to her side and looked away. “Did they hurt you?” She asked, in a voice barely recognisable as her own. Everything was so surreal in this moment that she didn’t know how to feel. All she knew was that she felt like herself. She never felt like herself any more. Yet, in front of Rachel she felt like she was incredibly exposed and it was unnerving. “I can call the police o-or I could… I know where they live, I could find them all.” Quinn nodded slowly as if that was a rational decision to make; follow the girls they had just run away from, home. She glanced back at Rachel and felt a blush rush to her cheeks, further exposing her. Rachel Berry had always had that effect on her - but now, with Quinn the furthest from herself that she had ever been, it was refreshing to have someone make her feel herself again.