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Starting from Scratch (another Faberry!) F/F


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Hey guys!

So, yes, I am abandoning my last SoN story after only 3 parts...what can I say, it was a request, I just couldn't get myself that invested. But, here's a new Faberry story that's been bouncing around my head for a while. The premise is this: after Quinn's car accident, everyone's so focused on getting her to walk again, her internal injuries aren't addressed as comprehensively as they might be. I've mentioned in some future fics here that the accident left her with scar tissue in her lungs and a ruptured spleen, both of which make for a pretty crappy immune system; but I never addressed the actual time when she first had to deal with suddenly having all these respiratory illnesses, which is happening concurrently with them getting ready for college. It seemed like a really juicy moment to explore! And, as always, Rachel just wants to help make it better.

So, there might be a little bit more setup than normal here...but y'all know how I roll, we will get to the good stuff soon enough. Enjoy part 1! smile.png


Starting from Scratch

A Glee-Faberry story for SFF

Part 1


"Quinn, are you up yet? Time to hit the mall," Rachel called out cheerfully as she poked her head around her girlfriend's bedroom door, to find the blonde girl still sprawled out in bed, cuddling her favorite stuffed monster with her golden locks splayed messily across the pillow.

"Ugh, nooooo," Quinn mumbled sleepily, pulling the pillow over her head. "No mall...m'sleeping..."

"Honey, c'mon, you've gotta get up," Rachel sighed, her voice softening as she sat on the edge of her girlfriend's bed and pulled the pillow away from her face, gently ruffling her sleep-mussed blonde hair. "It's almost noon, and we only have a few days left to finish all our dorm shopping. It's now or never, so get your cute butt out of bed before I'm forced to take drastic measures." The blonde girl whined and rubbed her eyes, finally sitting up with a long, drawn-out yawn.

"I don't need any more stuff. You'll buy enough stuff for both of us. Why do I have to go?" Quinn grumbled, still rubbing the sleep from her eyes.

"Well, you don't have to, I guess," Rachel frowned, her disappointment obvious in her big brown eyes as she stroked her girlfriend's sleepy face, and felt her forehead. "Are you feeling sick again, angelfish?"

"No, I'm just tired," Quinn groused, pushing Rachel's hand away from her forehead. "Am I allowed to be tired, or does that violate the all-perky-all-the-time Rachel Berry Rules of Conduct?" She regretted the words as soon as they were out of her mouth, but it was too late to take them back, as the little starlet climbed awkwardly off the bed with a sad puppy sort of look in her expressive brown eyes.

"Okay. Sorry. I'll go by myself. I have your list, so it's fine. See you tonight."

"No, I'll go...I'm sorry Rach, I didn't mean to be cranky," Quinn sighed, rubbing her forehead with another woozy yawn.

"It's okay Quinnie, I know you can be a little grumpy before you've had your coffee. I'll go down to the kitchen and make some, okay? You just take your time getting showered and dressed, there's no rush. I'll see you downstairs." Rachel smiled tentatively, and kissed her sleepy girlfriend lightly on the lips. Quinn smiled weakly back, watching her go with a glazed look in her tired eyes.

The truth was, Quinn was feeling pretty lousy. She'd been feeling pretty lousy all summer, as the fallout from her car accident continued to unfold, even after her injuries were healed. She'd spent the entire spring so focused on her physical therapy and getting out of the wheelchair, it didn't even occur to her that her internal injuries would continue to affect her so dramatically even after they'd healed. As it turned out, scarred lungs and a ruptured spleen were not a great combination, especially for someone whose immune system wasn't the best to begin with. In the last three months, she'd had a cold that turned into an ear infection, another cold that turned into bronchitis, and yet another cold that turned into a sinus infection. Three rounds of antibiotics later, she was exhausted and frustrated and terrified that this was going to be her life now, forever. How could she go to college in New York if she was going to keep getting sick every few weeks? How could she go anywhere? And as wonderful and attentive as Rachel had been through all the medical dramas, it was even more upsetting to think that she might be holding her little starlet back from her own future, with all her attention focused on Quinn's needs.

All in all, she was determined not to get sick again-- not right now, when they were just a week away from college orientation, and making all their final preparations to leave Lima. She was not going to lean on Rachel, or anyone else. She was eighteen years old, she was going to college in New York, and she was going to take care of herself. With that thought, she stripped off her pajamas and stumbled into the shower, soaking in the warm steam until she started to feel like herself again. By the time she got downstairs, dressed and ready for the day (well, what was left of it-- it was lunchtime already), she had pulled herself together and drawn on all her energy, giving her girlfriend a wholehearted grin as she was handed a cup of fresh coffee with skim milk and honey, just how she liked it.

"Thanks, baby. Sorry I was grouchy before, you know how I can be when I first wake up."

"I do, and thank you. I just want to make sure you're really feeling up to it-- I don't want to run you into the ground with frivolous shopping if you're getting sick again," Rachel said gently, one eyebrow raised in loving concern.

"Rachel, I'm fine," the blonde girl groaned, rolling her eyes for good measure. "And I'm sure this stuff won't seem frivolous once we move into our dorm rooms and realize we have nowhere to throw our trash, nothing to carry our toiletries in, and no sheets that fit the beds." She took a sip of her coffee. Rachel chuckled and shook her head.

"Okay, you win. I am in full-bargain-hunter mode. Let's go buy stuff."

"Cool, let me just grab my purse," Quinn smiled, taking another gulp of coffee as she ran to get her purse from the living room. Halfway there, her nose started to twitch; and though she tried to stop it, she felt her traitorous body suck in a deep, ticklish breath. "Hihh...hht'chxsh!! *Snghf,*" she sighed quietly, wiping her nose on the back of her wrist with a weary sniffle. It was just one sneeze, a voice in her head complained; but she couldn't lie to herself. A "no particular reason" sneeze wouldn't leave an ache in her chest, or a scratchy feeling in the back of her throat. She could taste the germs in the back of her throat, too. It was subtle, but much too familiar by now for Quinn to trick herself into ignoring it.

"Fuck...you stupid fucking weakling," she groaned, rubbing her forehead with the heel of her hand. This was not happening. She had things to do and places to go. She was not going to be a baby and sit around the house in her pajamas for the rest of her life.

"Rach, I'm just gonna use the bathroom real quick!" she yelled back to the kitchen, before running upstairs and rooting through her bathroom cabinet to find some cold medicine and nasal spray. Maybe she was getting another cold; but this time, she was determined, it would just be a regular cold, and that meant she could treat it with regular, over-the-counter cold meds. She gulped down the orange gelcaps, shot some nasal spray up her nose, then inspected herself briefly in the mirror. Satisfied that she looked fine and healthy, she gave her reflection a little smile; then she grabbed a pocket-pack of kleenex for her purse, just in case, and went back downstairs to meet Rachel. "Okay, let's go!"


"So, let's see...we've got bathroom stuff, bedroom stuff, reading lamps...should we hit the office supplies next? We need ink cartridges, pens, memory sticks, computer paper and notebook paper, plus I really think we should each get one of those little hand-held voice recorders, so we can record our lectures for later review." Rachel was completely in her element, checking off items on her enormous list of college supplies as Quinn pushed the already overflowing cart down the aisle of Bed Bath & Beyond.

"Whatever you want," Quinn yawned, with a soft, raspy cough into her elbow. Her mood had been going downhill all afternoon. The colds meds she'd taken were doing a decent job of keeping her nasal passages clear; but her throat was really starting to hurt, along with her head, and she couldn't suppress the nagging cough that was always the first telling sign of an impending illness, at least since the accident. She tried not to let it show; but her girlfriend had a way of always knowing how she was feeling, even if she wouldn't come out and say it. Quinn supposed she could say the same thing, though in her case, the question was more or less academic-- Rachel never kept her feelings hidden, not from Quinn anyway.

The brunette in question was now regarding her girlfriend with her eyebrows raised in an expression of frank appraisal. "Whatever I want? Really? Because what I really want is for my girlfriend to tell me honestly when she's feeling sick, so I won't make it worse by dragging her around town running dumb errands all day."

"Rach, come on," Quinn groaned, leaning against the shopping cart and giving her girlfriend a doe-eyed pout. "I'm an adult, not a kid for you to babysit. Yeah, okay, I am feeling a little crappy, but it's not that bad, and I'm not going to spend my last week of summer vacation in seclusion. You were the one who made me get out of the house, remember?"

"Yeah, well that was when I thought you were just being lazy," Rachel countered, crossing her arms and tapping her foot anxiously on the floor. "But Quinnie, you've been coughing all afternoon. I know that cough, and it always brings along a few friends. If you're actually coming down with something, we really shouldn't be spending our last week at home running you ragged. You're gonna need all your strength in New York, and now is the only time left for rest and recuperation."

"I've been recuperating for six months!" Quinn snapped. Then, abruptly, her eyes filled with tears. "I'm sorry," she sniffled, wiping her eyes hastily on the back of her hand. "I'm just so tired of living like a cancer patient. I am not going to spend the rest of my life in a plastic bubble, Rach. I know you want to do what's best for me, and I love that-- but right now, I'm telling you, what's best for me is to stay the course and keep on doing what we need to do to get ready for college. I don't feel too bad, it's just a little bit of a cold, okay baby? I promise, I'm okay." Quinn smiled weakly, and Rachel shook her head, assessing her girlfriend's tired hazel eyes, and the pallor in her face.

"It's always 'just a little bit of a cold,' until it isn't," the little starlet sighed, stroking a lock of blonde hair back from her girlfriend's face, subtly checking to make sure she didn't feel feverish. "But I do understand why you're so frustrated right now...of course I do. I wish I could make it all better."

"You make it a lot better," Quinn smiled, relieved that they weren't going to have a big fight in the middle of the sheets & bedspreads aisle of Bed Bath & Beyond. "You always take such good care of me, my little starfish...I just hate feeling like a drain on you, like I'm sucking up all your energy so you don't have any left for yourself."

"Aw, Quinnie-pie...don't say that," Rachel shook her head, wrapping her arms around her girlfriend's neck and pressing their foreheads together. "You could never, ever be a drain on me, baby. I love taking care of you, just like you always love take care of me when I need it. I know you're frustrated with how much harder everything's been since the accident...but you've come so far, and you've worked so hard, and you are getting better every day...don't forget that." The little starlet sealed her pronouncement with a kiss; and for a moment, they were lost in a world of only each other, and everything was perfect. Then Quinn pulled away, so suddenly that Rachel could feel her girlfriend's sharp intake of breath against her lips, as the blonde girl jerked her head to the side and cupped a hand to her face.

"Hhh'hichiew! *Snfl.*" Quinn shivered a little when she sneezed, her blonde hair splaying across her face as her shoulders jerked and her body bent double.

"God bless you," Rachel cooed, while Quinn grumbled and fished the pocket-tissues out of her purse one-handed, the other still cupped awkwardly over her nose and mouth.

"You were...*snghf!*...saying something about how I'm getting better every day?" the blonde girl muttered dryly as she wiped her nose.

"Well, maybe not every day. But most days," Rachel shrugged, cocking her head to the side and smiling sweetly at her sniffling girl. "Listen, we've gotten 75% of our list done already...wanna go check out, throw this stuff in the car, and then go take a coffee break? Then we can go to Office Max for the rest of the stuff on the list, we'll probably get a better deal there anyway."

"Yeah, that sounds good," Quinn nodded, giving her nose one last rub before shoving the crumpled kleenex in her pocket. "Thanks for putting up with all my moods, Rach. You're the best girlfriend ever."

"No, you are," Rachel teased gently, leaning up on her tiptoes for one last kiss before taking the shopping cart from the blonde girl's hands, and pushing it toward the checkout. Quinn trailed after her, trying to ignore the ache in her chest and the dizziness in her pounding head. Coffee would help clear her head; they only had a few more things to get. If she was going to get on with her life, she had to get tough and push through these minor colds and illnesses. She just had to. With a croaky cough into her sleeve, she followed Rachel to the checkout.

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Okay so i just reread this one and.....ITS FANTASTIC. please please continue i love where this is going and poor quinnie :(

i also love when you make those references to just how horrible her immune system is now after the crash etc. (too bad ryan murphy didnt think of that and put it into the script. :( )

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gah this is adorable!!! perfect timing, too. I'm stuck in the middle of nowhere at our camp; we've evacuated because of the hurricane. No school till Thursday and the storm's headed STRAIGHT for me. i'm gonna need some Faberry to get me through it lol

Stuck in a trailer with my two brothers...and my parents. Gosh, I love you so much for posting this!! Please continue!!!

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Yay, thanks you guys! It's always good company here on board the good ship faberry, isn't it? Enjoy part 2 :)


Starting from Scratch

Part 2


Rachel made them stop at the drug store for some herbal cough drops before they went on to the last leg of their dorm shopping, and Quinn spent the rest of the afternoon sucking on them, pretty much nonstop. It did seem to help ease the scratchy cough and the raw feeling in her throat; but it didn't touch the dull ache in her chest, and her head still throbbed, and as the cold pills she'd taken at home slowly wore off, her nose began to run sluggishly. After an hour at Office Max, she was sweating and shivering lightly under her thin summer jacket; but she told herself that was just the result of the overpowering air conditioning in the store. She wasn't going to get a fever this time. It was just a cold. She could live with it.

While they were waiting in line with the last load of stuff, Quinn's phone buzzed with a text from Santana: Yo, just bumped in2 the wondertwins, wr all going out 4 dinr @ stix. U & thumbelina free? Might be our last family dinr in OH! :)

Quinn smiled when she read the message, instantly distracted from her body's quiet complaints. Though they were all leaving for college in New York together soon (well, all except Blaine— but they knew he'd join them next year in any case), it would be naïve to imagine they'd be able to spend as much time together as they had in high school; they'd all be living in different parts of the city, busy with their separate schools and pursuits, not like being all together in glee club. And after she'd missed so much during their last few months of high school, when she was in the hospital and then in the wheelchair, Quinn didn't want to miss a second of these last few days at home with her friends.

“Dinner at Breadstix?” she asked her girlfriend, smiling brightly as she showed her the message. Rachel frowned.

“Are you sure, honey? I know you don't wanna miss out, but maybe we should just go home and take it easy tonight. Order some takeout, watch a movie, maybe go to bed early— what do you say? Our friends will understand— they want you to be healthy for New York, too.”

“Rachel, will you please stop coddling me? I asked if you want to go out to dinner, not whether you think I should go. Seriously, if I babied you this much every time you caught a cold, you'd completely flip your shit. So can you please chill? It's dinner at Breadstix, not the Winter Olympics.”

Rachel sighed and chewed on her lip, watching her girlfriend anxiously while the blonde girl grumpily unloaded the small mountain of school supplies from the cart onto the conveyor belt. She was too familiar with Quinn's moods and patterns by now to be shocked by her stubbornness; and it was a sign that she didn't feel too sick to stick up for what she wanted, so that was encouraging, at least. Rachel also knew the blond girl was feeling worse than she let on, though; she was getting awfully pale, and she kept sniffling, rubbing her forehead and pinching the bridge of her nose, probably from a sinus headache. Honestly, Rachel just wanted to take her home and make her herbal tea and cuddle her in front of the humidifier.

Still, Quinn was right about one thing—it really wasn't up to Rachel, or anyone else, to tell her what she could and couldn't handle. As much as it killed Rachel to watch her sweet girl suffer, especially after everything she'd been through this year, what she'd said about “if I babied you this much” was perfectly true. If their roles had been reversed, the little starlet knew she'd be jumping out of her skin just as much to take back control of her own life. They were leaving for college next week; they were adults now. That meant they had to treat each other like adults, too.

“Okay, Quinnie, I'm sorry. Let's go to Breadstix.” Rachel smiled, scratching her nails lightly across her girlfriend's back. The blonde girl beamed at her.

“Cool. I'll let Santi know we're on our way.” Quinn smiled, following after Rachel as she pushed the full cart out to the parking lot.

It was bright and muggy outside, in stark contrast to the intensely air conditioned interior of the Office Max, and as soon as the blonde girl stepped out into the heat, she felt a wave of vertigo that made her stumble sideways. Fortunately, Rachel didn't see it; the little brunette was already ten feet ahead, looking for the car. Quinn whimpered and pressed a hand to her forehead, taking shallow, even breaths as she blinked woozily at the shimmering air in the parking lot.

“What the fuck,” she muttered darkly, stumbling along after her girlfriend as the wave of dizziness slowly passed. When they got to the car, she passed Rachel the keys; and for once the shorter girl made no comment as she slipped behind the wheel. By the time they got to the restaurant, the feeling of vertigo had passed, and Quinn felt more or less okay as she linked hands with her doting little starlet, and followed the hostess to the table where their friends were chatting excitedly over their Diet Cokes.

“Quinn, sweetie, are you all right? You don't look so good,” Kurt frowned as soon as they sat down. Quinn groaned and raised an eyebrow drolly at Rachel.

“Why are you looking at me? I didn't tell him to say that,” Rachel huffed, crossing her arms over her chest. She was doing her best to be supportive and give her girlfriend space; but not being allowed to take care of her when she looked so miserable was infuriating.

“Whoa, okay chicas, no need to get your panties in a twist,” Santana frowned, raising an eyebrow at her friends, both of whom looked pretty cranky. “Q, for real. You okay? We could always get our food to go and bring it back to your place, if you wanna crash out on the couch or something.”

“What I want is to be treated like a normal human being, and not a glass doll that might break any second,” Quinn whined, with a soft, slightly congested cough into her sleeve.

“We don't think you're a glass doll, Quinn,” Brittany smiled, reaching out and patting her friend's arm reassuringly. “Dolls can't even catch colds.” As always, Brittany's utterly innocent sweetness made them all smile, and Quinn even giggled a little, shaking her head.

“Thanks, Britt, and I'm sorry I snapped at you. I'm just kind of tired, and I think I am coming down with a cold, but it's no big deal. Can we just have dinner? I promise not to cough on the bread basket.” Following Rachel's lead, they all shrugged awkwardly and carried on with dinner, chatting idly about the end-of-summer gossip and how much fun they were going to have in the city together. Every few minutes, Quinn sniffled or coughed softly; but they all politely ignored it, since the blonde girl had made it abundantly clear that she was not interested in drawing any sympathetic attention.

“All right, here we are,” the waitress announced as she arrived with their food, passing the plates around one at a time from the serving tray. “Penne with pesto, angel hair puttanesca, fettuccine alfredo, mushroom ravioli, eggplant parmigiana...and one bowl of minestrone soup.” She was an older woman, and she gave Quinn a motherly smile as she placed the steaming bowl of soup in front of her. “Would you like oyster crackers or saltines with that, hon?”

“Oh...I don't really care, whatever you h-have is...ihtchhiew!!” Quinn's shoulders snapped as she sneezed into her soup, hands cupped to her face in an attempt to contain her germs. The waitress took a hasty step back, making Quinn flush with embarrassment all over again.

“Goodness, bless you hon. Here, I'll just leave one of each, all right? You kids let me know if you need anything else.” Quinn sniffled and nodded shyly, fishing a few more tissues out of her purse and wiping her traitorous nose while her friends dug into their pasta. For a few minutes, they were all absorbed with their food; but the acidic vegetable soup turned out to make Quinn's sore throat feel even worse, and after a couple of bites she just played with it, pushing her spoon around absently while the others ate their pasta. A gentle touch of toes against her leg made her look up at Rachel, sitting across from her with a loving look of concern in her soulful brown eyes.

“Is something wrong with your soup, angel? You're not eating.”

“Uhh, no, it's fine...like I said, I'm just...*snfl*...ndot that hundgry. *Snnf!*” Quinn tried to smile, though it was getting harder to remember why she'd wanted to come here so badly in the first place. She was woozy and exhausted and shivering with fever chills, her head was still pounding, her chest still ached; and she was too embarrassed to blow her runny nose in the middle of the restaurant, leaving her sniffling and wiping away wet trickles of snot with her last, crumpled tissue every few minutes.

“Should we order some hot tea?” Rachel asked gently, her toes still grazing lightly up and down her girlfriend's leg under the table.

“Yeah, okay,” Quinn nodded, squeezing the damp pink underside of her nose in the wadded tissue as it gave a ticklish twitch, making her eyes well up and her breath catch sharply. “Uhhtchx!! *Snf, snnghf*...hih'TCHiiuh!!! *Snfl.* Uhh, egscuse be,” she sighed, sniffling deeply and rubbing a hand absently across her chest with a slight wince. Her face was shining with a thin coat of sweat now, and a fresh trickle of watery discharge dribbled gently from one rosy pink nostril before she wiped it away on the back of her wrist.

“All right, this is ridiculous. Q, you're sick,” Santana pronounced, dropping her fork and leveling her best friend with her most intimidating, Sue Sylvester-esque glare. “Can we just drop the charade and take you home, already? Running yourself into the ground for no reason isn't gonna help you get off to a good start in New York next week.” It was more or less the exact same thing Rachel had said, if not quite as solicitously delivered; but all Quinn could feel as she stared down into her untouched soup was shame. She was weak and pathetic, and now everybody knew it.

“Sorry,” she sniffed, her eyes burning with unshed tears. “I didn't mean to ruin dinner. You guys don't h-have to leave.” All her tissues used up, she grabbed her untouched paper napkin from the placemat and finally gave in and blew her nose, producing a deep, congested sound that didn't surprise any of them.

“Darling, nothing's been ruined,” Kurt assured her, and Blaine and Brittany nodded in earnest agreement. “What kind of friends would we be if we just sat here enjoying our pasta, completely oblivious to your misery? No more apologies now, we're taking our food to go. Let's all go back to your house—or Rachel's, if you prefer—and we can get comfy on the couch, hmm? Maybe watch a movie?” Again, it was the same suggestion Rachel had offered her hours ago; if she'd only listened to her girlfriend instead of trying to prove how damn tough she was, they could've all been spared the annoyance and inconvenience of having to coddle her like this.

“Okay,” she nodded miserably, turning her face into her elbow to cover a raspy cough. “I really am s-sorry...hhhih...hhkshiuh!! *Snghf.*” Quinn wiped her wet nose on the back of her wrist, coughing hoarsely into her sleeve.

“Stop beating yourself up, querida, everyone here loves you. We're gonna take care of you whether you like it or not,” Santana said brusquely, leaving no room for debate as she hustled them all out of the booth and went to find the waitress.

“Why don't you guys go on ahead? We'll settle up and wait for the doggy bags to come out, and meet you at Quinn's place in a few minutes,” Kurt offered, talking to Rachel as it was clear Quinn was in no shape to be driving.

“Doe, I dod't wadt to go hobe,” Quinn sniffed, taking the clean napkin her girlfriend offered her without comment and blowing thickly into it until the gurgling sound in her head cleared. “Ughh. Thanks, Rach. But I don't wanna go to my place—can we go to your house instead?” She smiled sheepishly, and Rachel beamed and kissed the delicate, slightly pink tip of her nose.

“Of course, angel. C'mon, lets go get comfy, and I'll make you some miso soup that will feel better on your poor little throat than Minestrone, hmm?”

“'Kay,” Quinn agreed with a weak smile and a yawn, allowing her girlfriend to slip an arm around her waist and guide her out of the restaurant and into the parking lot. Just like before, the transition from the highly air conditioned interior to the muggy heat of the parking lot hit her feverish body in a wave, making her stumble dizzily into her girlfriend's side.

“Whoa! Are you okay?” Rachel asked anxiously, gripping the woozy blonde girl more tightly around the waist as she swayed dangerously on her feet.

“I think so,” Quinn agreed weakly, leaning heavily into her girlfriend as an intense, sneezy tickle welled up in the back of her head, and she raised a hand to her face as she felt the flow of snot dribbling from her flared nostrils. “Uh—huhh—huh'ashOOoo!!” Rachel kept her grip on the blonde girl's shivering body as she snapped forward helplessly with the desperate force of her sneeze, a splatter of snot hitting the asphalt in front of them even though she had tried to cover her face with her free hand.

“Bless you, baby,” Rachel cooed sweetly, rubbing Quinn's back as a round of raspy coughing followed after her helplessly wet sneeze. The blonde girl whimpered softly as she straightened up, her head swimming with feverish vertigo as she blinked woozily at her girlfriend's loving, worried face.

“Rachel?” She murmured, pressing her free hand to her throbbing forehead, slick with sweat and suddenly so hot she felt like she might just evaporate into the air.

“Yeah, honey?” Rachel frowned, worried by the glassy, faraway look in her baby's hazel eyes, and the fact that she hadn't raised a hand to wipe her nose, which was dribbling gently again.

“I...*snghf*...I feel funny,” Quinn whispered, her face bone-white but for the slight rosy tinge around the bottom of her runny nose.

“What—” Rachel started to ask, but her question died in her throat when Quinn passed out cold in her arms. “Jesus!” The dark-haired girl shrieked, adrenalin surging through her body as she held onto Quinn with all her strength and knelt down with her limp body on the pavement, coming to rest with her girlfriend's head in her lap. “Quinn? Quinnie, baby, please wake up...somebody help!” The parking lot was empty, but her shriek drew pounding footsteps on the pavement behind her, that turned out to belong to Brittany and Santana.

“Fuck me, what happened?” Santana demanded, kneeling down beside a nearly hysterical Rachel and gently feeling Quinn's overheated face.

“I don't know, we were walking and sh-she, she said she felt funny, and then she just fainted!” Rachel squeaked, her hands shaking as they moved over her girlfriend's body, looking for any signs of injury.

“Jesus, she's burning up,” Santana groaned, stroking a few locks of sweat-dampened blonde hair back from her friend's pale face. “I didn't know...I thought she was just getting another cold or something...”

“Should we take her to the hospital?” Brittany asked anxiously, rubbing Rachel's back to keep the little starlet from hyperventilating—that was all they needed, two bodies passed out in the Breadstix parking lot. The question seemed to bring Rachel back from her panic attack; and she took a deep breath, closed her eyes, and smiled weakly, wiping away a few frightened tears that had streaked her face.

“No. No hospital. She just needs ice and fluids, and we can give her that at home. She'll hate us if she wakes up in the hospital...it's just this heat, her body can't handle a fever in this heat,” The little starlet sighed, stroking her girlfriend's sweaty forehead as her heart rate slowly returned to normal. “She'll be okay at home, and if she needs a prescription, Daddy can call it in. Santana, can you help me get her in the car?”

With exquisite gentleness, the tough Latina scooped up her best friend's limp body and cradled her protectively against her chest, standing slowly with Brittany's hand on her back to steady her. As they began to walk slowly across the parking lot, Quinn whimpered, coughed, and opened her eyes sleepily.

“San? I'm having a really weird dream,” she mumbled, looking up in confusion at her friend's anxious face. The mocha-skinned girl chuckled softly despite herself.

“You're not dreaming, mija. You passed out and nearly scared your girlfriend half to death. We're just gonna take you home and get some fluids in you, okay? Just relax, everything's okay querida. I promise.”

“Oh...fuck,” the blonde girl groaned, rubbing her eyes as the parking lot came into view, and her memory began to clear. “I'm sorry Santi, I didn't mean to...”

“Shh, be quiet and stop spazzing. I'm in charge now, and if I say it's okay, then it's damn well gonna be okay. You got me, Q?”

“Yeah...I got you,” Quinn agreed woozily, a sleepy half-smile spreading across her pale face. “Thadks, I...r-really...love you guys...huhh...hh...hhghshiiew!!” With a weak shiver, Quinn sneezed breathlessly against Santana's chest, a generous amount of snot misting her shirt despite the one hand Quinn had cupped awkwardly to her face.

“Bless you,” Santana chuckled, smiling to herself at how odd it was that she could ever be this happy to be snotted on. “C'mon, let's get you in the car, before Thumbelina has a heart attack.”

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this. is. UTTERLY FANTASTIC!!! poor quinnie :( my heart hurts when she suffers but shes so cute!!!!!

you have outdone yourself yet again my friend :) and i can't wait to see this continued!

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I'm like in love with you...Well i mean with your story but it's just so good. I'm from quebec and i started watch glee...Now i'm like addicted really bad! And Quinn is my favorite character...So thanx for that faberry story! Plus now i learn english because of it so it's a double thank you!!! I hope to read more! biggrinsmiley.gif

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this. is. UTTERLY FANTASTIC!!! poor quinnie :( my heart hurts when she suffers but shes so cute!!!!! you have outdone yourself yet again my friend :) and i can't wait to see this continued!

^^^^^ This though! Sooooo true :) Please continue!

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Can I just say how much I love Faberry? Well, I love Faberry. Great so far! But I must say poor Rachel, Quinn just took being cranky while sick to the max. Anyways I love it! Hope to see more soon.

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thx you guys! I'm about to run out the door to catch a plane, but here is an update to make your holiday weekend happier! Maybe it'll also help take your mind off the fact that Quinn and Santana haven't been in ANY of the new glee S4 previews :( damn you, ryan murphy!

uh, sorry, momentary sidetrack. enjoy the update my dears! :D


Starting from Scratch

Part 3


Rachel's dads were clearing away the dinner dishes when the front door banged open, and their daughter's anxious voice called them to the living room, accompanied by a cacophony of footsteps and tense murmurings. Both men were used to hearing their daughter's voice raised in extreme anxiety over any number of minor everyday issues, so they didn't worry too much as they dried their hands and followed Rachel's call to the living room, where they found the small flock of teens all fussing over a deathly-pale Quinn, who was curled up shivering on the couch with her head on Rachel's shoulder.

"Quinnie, what's wrong?" Michael asked, his voice calm but commanding as he knelt down in front of his daughters (Quinn may not be part of their family on paper; but both men had been thinking of the blonde girl as their second daughter for more than two years now).

"I...*snghf*...I fainted in the Breadstix parking lot," Quinn admitted miserably, her teeth chattering as Michael reached out a hand to feel her flushed forehead. "I thought I was j-just catching a cold...I f-felt okay this m-morning...uh, huhh...uht'chiiew!! Hehh...heISHshiih!!!" She sneezed breathlessly into her cupped hands, keeping them clamped firmly to her face to cover a rattling, congested cough, as Rachel stroked her hair and cooed softly to soothe her.

"Okay baby girl, shh, you're gonna be all right. We just need to get you cooled down, and get some fluids and antibiotics into you, okay pumpkin?" Michael's calming presence quickly brought down the general level of hysteria in the room; after 20 years as an ER surgeon, he was used to reacting quickly under far more stressful circumstances, and his soothing assurances calmed Rachel and the others as much as it did Quinn.

"'Kay," Quinn sniffled, even as her eyes filled up with fresh tears. "I'm really s-sorry...I should've t-taken better care of myself..." She took a fresh tissue from Rachel's outstretched hand, pressing it under her dribbling nostrils and blowing softly, squeezing her nose gently in the crumpled tissue to wipe away the trickles of snot running down her lip.

"Hush, sweetie, this isn't your fault," said Rachel's other dad, Jacob, re-appearing in the room with an ice pack and a soft fleece blanket, settling it over the blonde girl's shivering body before pressing the ice pack to her blazing hot forehead. "Just relax now, everyone's here for you and we're gonna get you feeling better. I'm going to go get you something to drink-- do you want anything in particular?"

"Can I have some tea?" Quinn asked almost shyly, wiping her nose on the crumpled tissue with a soft *snghf.* "I was so hot a minute ago...but now I'm f-freezing..." Her lower lip quivered helplessly as her little nostrils pulsed open, and she held the soggy remains of her tissue awkwardly in her cupped hands as her breath caught sharply in her aching chest. "Hh...hhih...hehhtchiew!!! *Snfl*...ugh, fuck this," she grumbled miserably, mopping ineffectually at the rivulets of snot running from her glistening nostrils.

"Bless you, kiddo," Jacob grinned sympathetically, kissing the top of her head. Then he reached across the coffee table and grabbed the box of tissues that was sitting there, putting it right in front of the sniffling girl. "Be right back. Don't you go anywhere now."

"No problem," Quinn smiled weakly. As soon as he was gone, Michael began gently examining her; he took her pulse and her temperature, looked in her ears and down her throat, and listened to her lungs with his stethoscope, all while she was comfortably cuddled in Rachel's protective arms.

"Well the good news is, your lungs sound clear," he said at last, to a collective sigh of relief from the room.

"What's the bad news?" Rachel asked, rubbing Quinn's back as the blonde girl bent over with a congested cough into her cupped hands.

"The bad news is, you still need to get an x-ray," Michael sighed, patting Quinn's knee as she groaned and looked up at him miserably. "We don't have to go tonight, but I'm setting up an appointment first thing in the morning. I know you're not overly fond of the hospital, pumpkin, but your lungs are still in recovery from the accident, and as the last few months have proven, you're very vulnerable to respiratory infection. If you're really being honest about feeling okay this morning--"

"I amb," Quinn grumbled defensively, her voice slightly muffled as she pinched a fresh tissue to her leaking nose.

"Then that's all the more reason to be as careful and comprehensive as possible moving forward. Your system just took a major nose-dive in, what, twelve hours? I know you've had a rough summer, but I haven't seen you this sick since the infection you got right after the accident, when you were still in the hospital." Quinn sighed, nodding miserably as her eyes filled up with fresh tears.

"Am I...*snfl*...gonna spend the rest of my life like this?" She whispered, too miserable now to be embarrassed as the tears spilled down her porcelain cheeks.

"No, baby girl...you're gonna get better," Michael promised, squeezing her hands in his as Rachel grabbed a fresh tissue and lovingly wiped the tear streaks from her face. "I know it's scary right now...but I promise, you are going to get healthy again. We already found you a pulmonary specialist in New York, one of the best in the country. And Rachel's mom Shelby will be close by, anytime things get tough and you need an adult to step in; and you know that your mom and Jacob and I are only a 2-hour flight away if you need us."

"And we'll be there too," Santana spoke up fiercely, the others all nodding in fervent agreement. "You're not alone, Q. You know that, right?"

"Yeah," Quinn nodded, looking around the room at all her friends' anxious, adoring faces, ending with her girlfriend, cuddled up lovingly beside her. "I know I'm not alone...thanks, you guys." She smiled weakly, and they all hugged and kissed her until Jacob came back into the room with the tea, and offered them all dinner; at which point they remembered that they still had all their food from Breadstix in Kurt's car, and Blaine ran out to get it.

"Movie time?" Rachel asked gently, threading her fingers through her girlfriend's silky blonde hair.

"Yeah," Quinn agreed, with a woozy yawn. "That sounds perfect...thanks, Rach. I really...*snnf!*...really l-love you...*snghf*..." Once more, she raised a fresh tissue to her running nose and pinched it gently around her raw pink nostrils, leaking snot as they twitched open in abject irritation. "Eh...h-heh...hh'htchiiew!!! *Snfl.*"

"I really, really love you too, Quinnie-pie," the little starlet beamed, stroking a lock of sweat-dampened hair back from her girlfriend's face as she leaned in for a kiss. Quinn's nose was still dripping, and Rachel could feel the slick smear of wetness across her upper lip mixing with their kiss; but she didn't care.

"Ughh, sorry Rach," the blonde girl groaned when they broke apart, reaching out to wipe her snot off Rachel's lip with her thumb. "I dod't...*snghf!*...dod't wadt to get you sick right before school starts, too."

"If it's a choice between catching a cold and not being allowed to kiss you, I'll take the sniffles, thank you very much," Rachel teased gently, kissing the damp, pinkish tip of Quinn's nose with a devious smile. Quinn blushed and giggled softly, making Rachel's smile even bigger. "Now drink your tea, my little snifflebug. We're gonna get you healthy again...that's a promise."

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oh my god i really love this story too!! this is just glorious! thank you so much for updating!! i hope you have a good holiday weekend :D

please please continue this one if you can!!

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can i just say how lovely it would be to see quinn go in for her x-ray with rachel by her side comforting and helping her? and of course quinn's embarrassment with being sick etc etc...just a thought :P

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can i just say how lovely it would be to see quinn go in for her x-ray with rachel by her side comforting and helping her? and of course quinn's embarrassment with being sick etc etc...just a thought tonguesmiley.gif

all in good time, young paduan. all in good time. ;)

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oh gosh! Just got power back form the hurricane, and this was the best possible thing to find after that!! This AND a Bieber fic!!! Law, I'm in heaven!!!!!

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all in good time, young paduan. all in good time

yes master i will practice my patience...*meditates* okay i'm done is there more?? :P (btw love the star wars reference ;) )

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Hey guys! thanks for your patience, I've been having some computer problems this week. Oy vey! Hopefully it'll get sorted out quickly. In the meantime, please enjoy this chap, and happy labor day! :)


Starting from Scratch

Part 4


Quinn woke up alone in the darkness, disoriented and shaking with feverish nightmares; and for a moment, she couldn't even remember where she was. Then the dim outlines of Rachel's four-poster bed appeared in the moonlight, and the blonde girl remembered herself, her heart thudding in her chest as the remnants of anxious dreams drained from her aching head. Yes, they were at Rachel's house...she fainted, and they brought her here...but she didn't remember coming upstairs to bed. The last thing she remembered was being on the couch downstairs with Rachel cuddling her, watching Dirty Dancing with Kurt and Blaine and Britt and Santana, while Rachel's dads forced some hot tea and scrambled eggs into her queasy stomach, so she could take the jumbo-sized antibiotics her doctor called in. She remembered being curled up warm and safe in Rachel's lap, with her friends' gentle voices around her...then, nothing.

It must be bedtime...they must've carried her upstairs, and she'd slept right through it. But where was Rachel? Why wasn't she here? Quinn sniffled and wiped away the tears that sprang hot and unbidden to her eyes, feeling irrationally lonely and disappointed that her friends had all gone home, and she didn't get to say goodbye. She coughed sharply into a cupped hand, feeling her whole chest rattle with congestion, sore and aching in a way that made her careful not to breathe too deeply. It was miserable, and Quinn whimpered softly in the darkness, stumbling to her feet with a hand pressed to her sweaty forehead to steady herself. Her steps were shaky, but determined, as she pushed open the bedroom door and squinted at the overly-bright hallway. Snot dribbled from her stuffy nose, and she wiped her nose carelessly on the back of her sleeve, sniffling softly as she made her way woozily down the hall to the bathroom, where more light spilled from under the half-closed door. She pushed it open, and there was Rachel, brushing her teeth in her pajamas.

“Quinnie?” Rachel's eyes went wide with alarm as she looked up and saw Quinn in the bathroom mirror; and, as Quinn looked up and saw her own reflection, she couldn't really blame her girlfriend for looking so anxious. Her complexion had gone so pale, it looked almost ashen; and there were dark, bruise-like circles under her fever-glazed eyes. The only color left in her face was coming from her stuffy nose, pink and tender, and leaking sluggishly with rivulets of discharge that slipped down into the divot above her lip. “Aww, angelfish, what are you doing out of bed?” Rachel immediately spat out her toothpaste in the sink, and rushed to her girlfriend's side, gathering the blonde girl's shivering body gently in her arms.

“I woke up...ahd I dided't kdow where adybody was,” Quinn sniffled, dropping her head on Rachel's shoulder as the smaller girl's cool, soft hands pulled her close, running through her hair and lightly rubbing her shaking back. “I dod't...*snfl!*...dod't wadt to be by mbyself. *Snnghf!*” Quinn's sniffling made her cough, wet and raspy into her sleeve, and Rachel cooed to her and rubbed her back.

“Ssh, I know baby, I know...it's okay, I promise, I'm right here. You're not by yourself, my sweet angel. I'm sorry you woke up all alone...I was just getting ready for bed, and Daddy carried you upstairs so we wouldn't have to wake you. C'mon, let's get you back in bed, okay angel?” Rachel stroked Quinn's sweaty hair back from her face, dropping a soft kiss on her hot forehead.

“Did everybody go hobe?” Quinn asked woozily, rubbing sleepily at her stinging eyes.

“Yeah, baby. It's bedtime, everybody went home.” Rachel grabbed a tissue from the box sitting on the bathroom shelf, and gently wiped under her girlfriend's runny nose, lightly pinching the tender pink underside of Quinn's snot-slicked nostrils to catch the dribbles running down towards her lip. “Poor baby, you're so stuffed up...here, blow.” Rachel pinched the tissue a little more firmly to her girlfriend's tender nostrils, and Quinn obediently closed her eyes, too miserable to be embarrassed about being babied like this, and blew thickly into the tissue being held to her nose. Rachel felt the warm, wet splatter of snot against her hand, and knew that one tissue was not getting the job done; with one final swipe under Quinn's leaking nostrils, she tossed the soaked tissue and pulled out several more.

“Here,” Rachel started to say, holding out the fresh tissues to her snuffling baby; but Quinn's eyes were fluttering now, and she pressed a finger firmly under her glistening nostrils as they quivered and huffed, still gently leaking snot.

“Ahh...” The ticklish sound that escaped her throat was soft and helpless, forcing her eyes shut and her nostrils wide open as her lungs expanded painfully with a deep, wheezy gasp of congested irritation. “AhtCHhiuh!! *Snghf.*” Quinn shivered with the force of her sneeze, doubling over so the splatter from her spasming nostrils hit the floor instead of Rachel's face.

“Bless you, pookie,” Rachel hummed softly, rubbing her girlfriend's back as she coughed and sniffled, woozily accepting the bundle of tissues the dark-haired girl handed over wordlessly.

“Thadks, Rach...*snfl*...ughh, by head hurts...” Quinn sighed and pressed one hand to her forehead while the other held the tissues cupped to her twitchy nose, blowing softly so as not to cause more pain.

“C'mon baby, let's get you back in bed, okay? You're shivering all over and you can barely stand up,” Rachel fussed, wrapping one arm firmly around her girlfriend's waist and forcefully steering her back into the hallway.

“Oh...*snghf*...okay...ah-ahhkxshew!!!” Quinn sneezed desperately again, tissues cupped clumsily to her face to contain the flood of discharge from her dribbling nostrils.

“Bless you,” Rachel said again, just as a door opened at the other end of the hallway, and Jacob's head popped out.

“Hey, I thought I heard the sound of someone who's supposed to be sleeping...what's wrong, Quinnie? What are you doing out of bed?” Jacob asked gently, as he approached and wrapped an arm around Quinn's other side, holding her shivering body up between the two of them.

“Help me get her back in bed, and then we can talk,” Rachel muttered, tightening her grip on her girlfriend's body and steering her firmly back to bed, where her father helped her get the fever-dazed girl back into bed.

“Stay,” Quinn commanded her girlfriend sleepily, one hand gripping the fabric of Rachel's pajama top.

“I'm right here, angel,” Rachel murmured, climbing into bed beside her baby and cuddling up to her, murmuring soft reassurances and rubbing her back when she coughed again, deep and rattling and congested.

“Do you want some more tea, sweetheart?” Jacob asked kindly, when the coughing ended and Quinn sighed miserably, wiping her nose on the wadded tissue in her hand.

“Yeah. Thadks,” she croaked woozily, taking a fresh tissue from the box on the bedside table and blowing softly into it. “With...*snfl*...with extra...h-honey...uht'tchew!! *Snghf.*”

“Bless you,” Rachel and her dad chorused together, while Quinn rubbed and blew her nose in the damp, wadded remains of the tissue, sighing miserably.

“Tea with extra honey coming right up. I'll be back in a minute—you girls just stay put now, okay?”

“Dod't worry...I'b dot goihg adywhere,” Quinn muttered darkly. Jacob kissed her forehead, then Rachel's, and left them cuddled in bed.

“Ughh, this blows,” Quinn sighed, nuzzling up to Rachel's shoulder as she pressed a fresh tissue to her glistening nostrils, feeling the deep, wafting tickle behind her nose and eyes that told her she was without question going to sneeze again. “Ehh...eishOOoo!!! Hh-hihhtxchew!!” She felt Rachel's gentle hand stroking her hair as she sneezed helplessly against her girlfriend's shoulder, the backs of her cupped hands pressing up against the cool fabric of Rachel's pajama top.

“God bless you, my poor little angel,” the dark-haired girl sighed, as Quinn sniffled and reached for another tissue.

“Rach,” Quinn asked sleepily when she'd finished blowing her nose, “Do you wadt be to sleep id the guest roomb todight? I doe you dever...*snnghf!*...dever seeb to catch by...*snf*...by gerbs...but I dod't wadt to keep you awake with all by coughs and sndiffles, ahd...ahhd...” Quinn's eyes slid shut, and Rachel grabbed a fresh tissue as she saw a gleaming drop of discharge quivering just inside the rim of one wet nostril.

Without thinking, Rachel held the tissue up to her girlfriend's tender pink nose, cupping her free hand to the back of Quinn's head to hold her steady as the blonde girl's breath hitched, and the little starlet felt her baby's delicate little nostrils pulse open inside the tissue as her back arched and her whole body tensed involuntarily. “AhhTCHiiuh!!” Rachel held onto the tissue as Quinn rocked forward, gently squeezing her baby's sneezy nostrils through the tissue to keep it in place as it was blasted with moist air and snot.

“Bless you, bless you, bless you,” The little starlet hummed softly, smiling crookedly at her sniffling angel as Quinn awkwardly took the damp tissue back from her fingers, wiping and blowing until the gurgling sound in her head subsided, if only for the moment. “And if you think I'm going to let you sleep in the guest room when you've got a hundred and two degree fever, you are even more delirious than I thought.” Quinn chuckled weakly, tossing the small pile of soaked tissues in her lap into the trash bin and cuddling back against Rachel's side with a soft yawn.

“That's what I figured you'd say...I just...*snghf!*...wanted to give you the choice.”

“I don't have a choice,” Rachel shook her head, snuggling down and kissing her sniffling angel lightly on the lips. “If you kicked me out of bed, I'd sleep on the floor...and if you wanted to go home and sleep in your own bed, I'd just follow you. It hurts my heart to be away from you when you're sick, Quinnie-pie...I'd give up anything if I could make you feel better.”

“You already are,” Quinn yawned, rubbing her eyes with a sleepy smile as Jacob came back into the room carrying a tray with her tea.

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omg. It's happening again. I have a totally crappy day, then someone like you comes with something like this and now I can't stop smiling :D

That was amazing!!! Very, VERY adorable, and you're an insanely talented writer :)

Thank you so much! I really needed this today. You made my day :D

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omg. It's happening again. I have a totally crappy day, then someone like you comes with something like this and now I can't stop smiling :D That was amazing!!! Very, VERY adorable, and you're an insanely talented writer :) Thank you so much! I really needed this today. You made my day :D

^^^^ yes! everything about that is 100% true! I love this story and I love everything you write! :)

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