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Blame it on the Polar Vortex (F/F Glee Faberry--another starring Rachel!) Updated 2/2


wannablessedbe

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Hello darlings! Here is a new story for 2014, hope you enjoy. Quinn and Rachel are in their 2nd year of college in NYC, coming home to Lima for winter vacation. That's all you need to know! smile.png

cheers,

--WBB

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Blame the Polar Vortex

A Faberry story for SFF

Part 1

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“Rach, wake up. We're landing.” Her girlfriend's gentle nudge and warm fingers running through her hair roused the dark-haired girl from a deep, dream-filled sleep, picking up her head blearily and blinking around the airline cabin with a soft sigh. For a moment, when she first opened her eyes, she completely forgot where she was; but just for a moment. Then she looked across Quinn to the little window full of sky and clouds, and she remembered. They were flying home to Lima. Christmas vacation. Yes.

“I was having naughty dreams,” the little starlet murmured woozily, giving the blonde girl a drowsy, sexy grin as she rubbed the sleep from her eyes.

“Awww. Well since I woke you up, I guess I'd better make it up to you,” Quinn teased gently, thoroughly charmed by the not-quite-awake version of her girlfriend that she rarely got to see. Rachel was such a total morning person; she was almost always awake first.

“Yes, you better,” The dark-haired girl agreed, with a soft yawn as she reached out and twirled a lock of her girlfriend's blonde hair around her finger to pull her closer. Quinn sighed happily against Rachel's lips, slipping one hand down to dip teasingly under her shirt, fingers brushing lightly over her bellybutton as they traded gentle, sleepy kisses.

“Excuse me ladies. You'll have to raise your seats back to the upright position for landing,” The young flight attendant cleared his throat discreetly to get their attention. He looked to be in his early or mid twenties, and very definitely gay. Quinn and Rachel had never really been shy—modest might be a better word—but after a year and a half in New York, they were so at ease with their world and so used to how normal it was to be gay there, they'd experienced a significant upturn in their displays of public affection. They'd have to remember that they were back in Ohio now.

“Right. Sorry,” Rachel smirked, not looking sorry one bit as she detached herself from Quinn's lips and put her seat back up.

“Oh, honey, please.” He waved her off with a little eyeroll that said, we're totally on the same team, and even if we weren't, you're just adorable. “Can I get anyone anything before we land?”

“Water?” Rachel asked sweetly. The young man nodded and moved on.

“I can't believe we're going to be in Lima in, like, fifteen minutes,” Quinn shook her head, looking out the window at the approaching Ohio skyline.

“I know. It feels like another lifetime now,” Rachel sighed, slipping her hand into Quinn's and rubbing light circles with her thumb. “But I'm excited to see everyone. Did you hear Mike and Tina are flying in, too?”

“Really?” Quinn's eyes were as bright as her smile. “Then, that makes everyone—the whole original glee club!”

“I know,” Rachel nodded happily, absently rubbing her nose on the back of her knuckles. It had been prickling and itching slightly ever since she woke up; but she assumed it was just because the airplane air was so dry.

“As soon as we land, I'm gonna text all the glee girls and see if they wanna come out tonight. God, I hope the roller rink is still there, Saturday nights is karaoke!” Quinn was gushing now, finally allowing herself to feel the excitement of being back with the group of friends they hadn't seen (at least not all together) in over a year.

“Yeah...totally,” Rachel nodded absently, scrunching up her nose and rubbing a little harder. Ugh, why did it still tickle so much? “Hhuh...” Her lower lip quivered, and she hastily turned her hand, pinching the underside of her nose lightly between her fingers and cupping the palm of her hand over her mouth. “Hhut'chxshh!! *Snf!*...uhh, excuse me,” she giggled, slightly embarrassed by the sudden, irrepressible sneeze. Rachel Berry prided herself on being in complete control at all times.

“Bless you, starfish,” Quinn cooed, fishing a clean napkin out of the seat back in front of her and handing it to her girlfriend. “Not catching the sniffles, are you baby?”

“No, I feel fine. The air in here is just really dry,” Rachel shrugged, accepting the scratchy paper napkin and rubbing her itchy nose in it a bit. As if on cue, the flight attendant re-appeared with a little bottle of water for her, passing it to her quickly on his way back to the front of the cabin for landing. She gulped half of it down in one long gulp (granted, it was only a tiny baby airplane bottle to begin with; but still). “You should have some too, Quinnie. I know we're gonna end up drinking if we go out with the gang tonight, and you don't want to get dehydrated.”

“Yes dear,” Quinn teased, leaning in and dropping a light kiss on the end of her girlfriend's nose as she took the half-empty water bottle from her.

Ten minutes later, the plane taxied onto the runway, and they were officially back in Ohio. As soon as the captain announced that they could turn their phones back on, Rachel speed-dialed her dad, whose squeal of excitement made Quinn smile from the next seat over. “Dad's waiting for us in the baggage claim,” Rachel offered with a smile of her own as she slipped her phone back into her purse.

“Yeah, I gathered,” Quinn smirked, standing with a stretch to retrieve their things from the overhead bin.

“Thanks,” Rachel stood and reached out for her bag; but halfway there, her hand swiftly changed direction and pressed back against the underside of her nose, pinching roughly as her breath caught shallowly in her chest. “Uht'CHSHH!! *Snfl*...ugh, dammit! Sorry,” the dark-haired girl sighed, sounding a little cranky as she sniffled sharply and rubbed her nose on her knuckles again.

“Bless you, baby girl! Maybe you are catching a cold,” Quinn frowned, putting her bag down on her seat to reach out and feel her girlfriend's forehead.

“Quinn, I'm fine,” Rachel groaned, rolling her eyes as she reached for the bag on Quinn's seat. “I told you, it's just the stupid dry airplane air making my nose all itchy. C'mon, let's go find Dad, I wanna get off this thing.”

“'Kay,” Quinn shrugged, knowing that pressing the issue wouldn't do any good anyway. She grinned and dropped one more soft, full kiss on her girlfriend's warm lips before turning and leading her out of the plane. Behind her, Rachel was squinting and rubbing her nose again, trying to control her softly hitching breath as she squeezed and massaged the underside of her nose between her fingers again.

“Hhh...hhih...hhhishhxt!!!” The little starlet pitched forward in the narrow aisle of the plane, hand cupped firmly over her mouth, eyes scrunched up tight in time with the irritated spasm inside her head.

“Bless youuu,” Quinn hummed gently over her shoulder.

“Thadks,” Rachel grumbled softly, with a barely audible sniffle. She wasn't about to tell Quinn—or anyone—but the raw, scratchy feeling that last sneeze had left in the back of her throat made her wonder if it really was just dry plane air making her nose feel so itchy, after all.

...To be continued!

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OMG i was already thinking when wannablessedbe was going to do a new fic :3 and yata here it is :3

as always say amazing fic *O* and i cant wait for next part

and i love sick rachel fics :DDDD

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Boom and i'm addicted once again! I love sick Rachel! I love sick Quinn too. I just love anything you write! I'd love to see another part!

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Hey guys! sorry this update took a little longer than usual, I just had a really busy week. but I would never forget Quinn & Rachel!! Enjoy the update, and happy MLK weekend smile.png

--WBB

ps-- hello12345, welcome aboard! I always start slow with the symptoms, but there is a bit more coughing in this chap...and there will be even more in the next chap! (there will be more of everything in the next chap, lol).

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Blame it on the Polar Vortex

Part 2

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"Santana! At least try to be subtle with the damn flask, will you? We're not in New York anymore," Quinn half-snickered as she put a hand over her best friend's shiny metal flask and pushed it under the table, where the Latina girl unapologetically continued pouring Jack Daniels into her soda.

"Yeah, whatever. I'm so worried about getting in trouble at the Lima disco-roller-rink. Maybe they'll tell Figgins and we'll get detention...oh wait!" She smirked and raised an eyebrow, making Brittany, Tina and Kurt all burst into giggles, while Quinn just rolled her eyes and tried to hold back her own grin.

"Yes, Auntie Snix, we're all grown up now and we don't live here anymore," the blonde girl snickered, "But we're still underage, and we can still get kicked out of here for drinking if they catch us. And you know you don't want to deal with Rachel if she doesn't get her karaoke fix. Just try to keep it on the DL, okay? Nobody's saying put the flask away."

"Yeah, yeah, okay grandma," Santana snorted, passing the flask to her best friend under the table, who took it with a wink.

"Thank you," Quinn hummed sweetly, pouring a healthy shot into her own plastic cup of diet coke, and then her girlfriend's, which had been abandoned while Rachel went to sign them all up for the first dozen or so slots of karaoke, which would be starting any minute.

At that moment, Rachel came stalking back over to their group in a huff, looking extremely ill-tempered as she threw herself down into the seat beside her girlfriend. "Well draconian law is alive and well in Ohio," the little starlet huffed, crossing her arms sullenly as she sat down. "That stupid pimply roller-rink DJ just told me I have to wait until after 9pm to sign up on the karaoke sheet. As if some crazed hoard of karaoke patrons is going to bang down the door in the next five minutes and demand an earlier slot. Where do they think they are, Houston and Delancey?" She rolled her eyes with an emphatic sigh, and took a gulp of her spiked soda.

"I don't think anyone here would even know what city you're talking about," Quinn said gently, wrapping an arm around Rachel's shoulder and lightly rubbing her thumb across the back of her girlfriend's neck. "Don't get your feathers in a ruff over some lame small-town bar DJ, hmm baby? We're gonna knock their boring Ohio socks off once we get up there, and that's what counts. Right?"

"I suppose," Rachel grumbled, taking another long gulp of her spiked soda.

"Rach, take it easy with the fun juice," Quinn murmured, raising an eyebrow at how fast the dark-haired girl was sucking down her drink. "Is something bugging you, hmm starfish? You seem kind of cranky since we got off the plane. I thought you were psyched to be here."

"I am," Rachel sighed despondently, putting her cup down and dropping her head down on Quinn's shoulder for a moment. "Sorry, angelfish. I just have fuzzy jet-lag brain. I didn't mean to get all snarky."

"It's okay, pookie," Quinn smiled sweetly, leaning in and kissing her girlfriend thoroughly for several long moments, until Santana and Puck started hooting and wolf-whistling for more.

"Aaaand we're definitely back in Ohio," the little starlet smirked, a grudging grin spreading across her face as she leaned back in her seat and took another gulp of soda. They'd both gotten quite used to the fact that kissing in public didn't particularly cause a reaction in New York, and was really quite mundane in the circles they traveled in nowadays.

"And you just hate being the center of attention," Quinn teased gently, glad to see a smile back on her little starlet's face. It was hard for her to enjoy herself if her baby wasn't having a good time.

"Well, I...uhh..." Rachel's expression slid slightly out of focus, and a little crinkle appeared between her eyes. Quinn instantly recognized her girlfriend's woozy, gonna-sneeze expression (the last time she'd seen it had been maybe twenty minutes ago), and pressed a bar napkin hastily into her hand. Rachel grabbed it just as her breath hitched and her eyes snapped shut, cupping the scratchy napkin awkwardly to her face. "Hht'chhihew!!! *Snfl,*" The little starlet shivered visibly as she pitched forward and caught the wet sneeze in her hands in midair. "Ughh. Excuse mbe," she sighed, scrunching up her eyes as she gave a soft, hesitant blow into the now-soggy napkin.

"Bless you, baby!" Quinn cooed, handing her another napkin in case she wanted to wipe her nose again. "Be honest, Rach, are you feeling sick? We don't have to stay out late tonight, we can just go home and chill. We'll have plenty of time to catch up with these idiots before we go back to New York."

"Noooo," Rachel whined, shoving the soggy napkin in her pocket with an enormous, sad-eyed pout that never failed to bend her girlfriend to her will. "Quinn, for fuck's sake, I'm fine. We came all the way from New York to be with our high school friends, and now we're here, and it's time for karaoke, dammit!" With that, the dark haired girl gulped down the rest of her drink, stood up, and grabbed Quinn's hand. “Now let's...*snfl*...let's go...” Eyes narrowed, she slowly raised her free hand back to her face, hovering an inch or so in front of her nose and mouth as her breath huffed softly in her chest. “Hhh...hhih...hhetxchew!! *Snfl*...ughh, fuck! Sorry.” Rachel groaned irritably, wiping her nose on her wrist with a delicate little sniffle.

“Bless you honey,” Quinn murmured, tucking a lock of dark hair back behind her girlfriend's ear. She really did think Rachel was probably catching a cold now; she'd sneezed half a dozen times since they got off the plane three hours ago, which was more than she normally did in a month. But knowing this didn't really help Quinn any—she also knew that if she kept pushing her girlfriend to admit she wasn't feeling well, she'd just get more and more cranky, and they'd probably have a fight, and this was supposed to be a fun night with their best friends in the world. So, she held her tongue. Santana, on the other hand, had no such compunctions.

“Dang, Thumbelina, you sound kind of snotified. I think you must've brought some germs with you from New York. Maybe Q's right, and you should sit this one out.” Santana raised an eyebrow, the closest thing to a concerned and sympathetic expression she was capable of. Rachel growled and stamped her foot.

“For the last freaking time! I am not sick. I'm just jet-lagged. And I am not giving you the first spot on the set list, Santana, so you can just forget about it. C'mon baby, let's show these hacks who's still number one around here.” She squeezed Quinn's hand tightly in her own, and dragged her across the floor to the karaoke stage.

"Okay, okay, twist my arm," Quinn giggled, willingly allowing herself to be dragged across the room. She didn't bother looking back to see if the rest of their group was following; they'd come soon enough once Rachel started singing. She stood hesitantly by the mic stand as Rachel rushed over to the DJ booth and whispered something in his ear. "So what are you singing?" she asked when Rachel came back over with her usual gold-star smile firmly back in place.

"Not me. We. And you'll see in a second!" Rachel grinned, picking up one of the mics and giving her a little wink. Quinn felt a rush of butterflies in her stomach, the same one she felt every time she got to sing in public with her gorgeous, perfect girl. It just never got old. Rachel rubbed her nose roughly on the back of her wrist, and then nodded to the DJ, who cued up the song she'd requested. Quinn felt her face flush as she looked back at her beaming girlfriend.

"All I want to get is...a little bit closer," Rachel sang, giving her a wink.

"All I wanna know is...can you come a little closer," Quinn sang back, thrilling at her girlfriend's choice of a Tegan and Sara song they both loved, but had never sung together. In New York, there was always so much pressure to be either supremely avant-garde, or else supremely classic. Bubbly alterno-pop never quite made the cut at Julliard karaoke nights, no matter how super-gay it was.

Here comes the breath, before we get

a little bit closer

Here comes the rush, before we touch,

can you come a little closer...

They were beaming at each other like they were a couple of shy fifteen-year-olds again as they sang to each other; and out of the corner of her eye, Quinn noticed not only her friends, but pretty much the entire population of the roller rink rushing over to the Karaoke stage to watch them, cheering and screaming for more already. This was another thing that was easy to forget about Ohio: they were still kind of a big deal around here. In New York, they were always surrounded by ridiculously talented people, every minute of every day. Here, they were national champions. Big fish in a very, very small pond.

The audience started jumping up and down and screaming by the time they got to the chorus; and Quinn felt all her inhibitions fall away like mist as she soaked up the crowd's enthusiasm, belting out her part and crooking her finger at her girlfriend to beckon her closer in time with the lyrics. While she was singing her oh, oh, ohhhs, though, she couldn't help but notice Rachel subtly turning her head away from the audience to muffle a string of coughs into her elbow. Luckily, the song was almost over, so Quinn just kept going, knowing that that's what Rachel would want; but she lost a little bit of the energy she'd had a moment ago as she kept one anxious eye on her girlfriend. Poor thing, she really doesn't feel good. I should've forced her to stay home. Like anyone can force Rachel Berry to do anything she doesn't wanna do...

When the song ended, the entire roller rink erupted into wild applause. Quinn felt a blush warming her cheeks as she smiled and curtsied at her captive audience; but a quick glance over at Rachel's face told her that her girlfriend wasn't feeling pleased with the performance. It took a lot of training to be able to detect a fake smile from Rachel, but after nearly four years together, Quinn was an expert. She could practically see the impending meltdown lurking behind her girlfriend's dark eyes.

Still, Rachel was ever the graceful performer, and she handed off the mic to Tina and Mercedes with another big smile and a curtsy before exiting the stage. Quinn followed hastily after her.

"Rach? Honey, slow down," the blonde girl called as she chased after her sulky little starlet, who was practically sprinting to the women's bathroom at the far end of the rink. Rachel made no reply, so Quinn just kept chasing after her until they both got through the bathroom door, where Rachel kicked the paper towel dispenser and burst into tears.

"Aww, baby," Quinn sighed sympathetically, wrapping both arms around her crying girl and pulling her close. Rachel didn't resist, dropping her head down on the blonde girl's chest and sobbing incoherently for a few minutes, pausing only to cough and sniffle, while Quinn cooed to her and stroked her dark hair. Finally, her sobs tapered into sniffles, and she lifted her head to look up at her girlfriend with big, teary brown eyes.

"I don't know what's wrong with me," the little starlet whined miserably, wiping her runny nose on the back of her hand with a deep, liquid sniffle.

"I do," Quinn smiled sympathetically, going into one of the stalls and coming out with a handful of toilet paper, which she offered to her sniffling baby. "You're just coming down with a yucky cold, baby boo. You don't have to be embarrassed. You're only human, and I think we just need to take you home for some tea and cuddles, hmm my love?"

"I'mb not sick, I'mb just jet-lagged," Rachel repeated stubbornly as she wiped her nose and rubbed her eyes. "I should be happy, we're seeing all our...*snfl*...our old friends, doing all our...*snfl*...f-favorite things...hhuhCHSHT!!! *Snfl.*" The miserable little starlet bent double and caught the stuffy, breathless sneeze in her hands; then she broke into another raspy cough.

"Bless you, sweetie pie," Quinn cooed, rubbing her girlfriend's shaking back.

"I'mb not sick," Rachel repeated miserably, her voice hollow and defeated. She threw the now-soggy wad of toilet paper into the trash with another soft, wet sniffle.

"Okay," Quinn murmured, handing her a fresh length of the cheap, thin toilet paper. It wasn't much, but it was better than the even rougher brown paper towels that were the only other option at the moment. Rachel snatched it with an impatient huff and blew her nose, producing a deep, wet, congested sound that took them both by surprise. "Do you feel better now, angel?" The blonde girl asked gently.

"No," Rachel whined despondently. "But I don't want our night to be...hhuh...ruined...hhehiishOOoo!!! *Snfl*..." Another shiver ran down her spine as she pitched forward and sneezed desperately, hands cupped to her face. "Aahh...*snfl*...ahht'CHSHXT!!! ...Ughh." The dark-haired girl straightened up with one hand pressed to her forehead, leaning dizzily into her girlfriend's arm. A thin trickle of clear, runny snot slipped gently from one nostril, making Quinn's heart give a little thump of sympathy and fierce protectiveness for her poor, sick baby girl.

"Bless you, bless you!" The blonde girl crooned, taking the wadded toilet paper from her girlfriend's limp hand and gently wiping under her wet nose for her. "Poor baby. It's not your fault, my sweet little starfish."

"I didn't say it was mby fault," Rachel grumbled; but her voice had lost its combative edge now. She sounded exhausted and defeated. And a bit stuffed up, too. "I just said I dided't wadt our whole ndight to be...*snfl*...to be ruined."

"It won't be ruined, Rach," Quinn promised, smoothing her girlfriend's hair back from her face and giving her a long, lingering kiss, not caring one bit if she was exposing herself to Rachel's germs. "C'mon, let me take you home, okay sweetness? We'll see the gang again tomorrow. Right now, I just wanna spoil you rotten with cuddles and cartoons and hot tea. Plus, at your dads' we don't have to worry about running out of hot water like we do in Brooklyn...we can take a nice, long, hot bubble bath, with the lavender bath salts and eucalyptus essential oil you love. Sound good?"

"Uhhh...yeah," Rachel sighed, a tiny, unwilling smile tugging on the corner of her mouth. "How do you always know exactly the right thing to say to make me feel better, huh?"

"That's easy," Quinn shrugged, twirling a lock of her girlfriend's dark, shiny hair around her finger. "Because making you feel better is what makes me feel better." They beamed shyly at each other, and Rachel leaned up on her tiptoes for another kiss. But, a moment before their lips touched, Quinn felt her girlfriend's sudden, hitching intake of breath against her lips; and the little starlet abruptly turned her head down and cupped a hand over her nose and mouth, pinching her nose lightly between her fingers as it quivered irritably.

"Uhht'CHHXEW!!!" Rachel sneezed woozily against Quinn's chest, shivering from head to toe as her girlfriend's arm wrapped soothingly around her back.

“Bless you, starfish,” Quinn cooed, kissing the top of her girlfriend's dark head while she sniffled and wiped her nose again.

“Thag you,” Rachel sighed despondently, giving in and blowing her nose in the crumpled, soggy wad of toilet paper. “Cand we...*snnfl*...cand we go hombe ndow?”

“Of course. C'mon baby girl, I got you.” Quinn wrapped her arm firmly around her girlfriend's shoulders, already thinking about ginger tea and lavender bubble bath.

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Can I just tell you that I was smiling like an idiot the entire time I was reading this? You've done it again and gotten me completely addicted. Love it and would love to see another chapter! :) Thanks for the update!

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Omg.. I was reading this and when I got to the song lyrics I was like NO FUCKING WAY TEGAN AND SARA!! -> I'm going to explain haha, I recently discovered and fell in love with T and S and then you like combined them with one of your amazing stories and I sort of nearly died of excitement lol and also, santana :Pblowup.gif

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haha, yay, thx you guys! and sugarrush, I'm glad you liked my song selection-- I have totally thought about having quinn and rachel cover that song for a while! and just to be clear, I am not at all saying that T&S aren't popular in NYC, cuz they SO are. I was just trying to imagine a snobby music scene for Rachel's friends at Julliard, and I imagined that anything pop-ish would be looked down on in that environment. but we have definitely had their songs in our brooklyn karaoke nites!! ;)

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yes, faberry with the song closer is one hell of a combination. Yeah I totally get what you mean with the Julliard people looking down on it. Those karaoke nights sound awesome I want to go! haha I need to work on my singing skills :D

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update! hooray! enjoy :)

--WBB

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Blame it on the Polar Vortex

Part 3

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It was much colder when they left the roller rink than it had been a few hours ago, and snow was now billowing thickly through the frigid midwestern air. Quinn could hear her girlfriend's teeth chattering beside her as soon as they were out the door, and it gave the blonde girl another deep pang of protectiveness over her shivering, sniffling baby. Rachel wasn't used to giving up control as a general rule; and Quinn was sure that losing control over her respiratory function—the very thing she'd spent her life perfecting to near flawlessness as a singer—was even more discombobulating for her little starlet. Rachel hardly ever got sick, and it usually fell to Quinn to remind her that she was only human, that being sick is your body's way of telling you that you just have to slow down.

“Why don't you go back inside and wait in the lobby, hmm starfish?” Quinn suggested gently, pulling the hood of Rachel's warm winter coat up over her head and kissing her chilled forehead. “I'll go get the car and pull it around so you don't have to walk in the snow.”

“Quinn, I'mb n-not an invalid,” Rachel grumbled through her shivers, her breath clouding the snowy air as she pouted and wrapped her arms tightly around herself. “I can walk to the damnb car, o-k-kay?” She cupped a gloved hand to her mouth to cover another rattling cough. Quinn wrapped an arm protectively around her shoulders.

“Okay, babe. C'mon, let's get out of here.” Quinn was shivering a little, too—it was much colder than it had been in New York when they got on the plane that morning. They shuffled through the powdery coating of snow settling across the parking lot, Quinn steering Rachel rather forcefully by the shoulders until they got to their car (well, it was Rachel's dad's car—but it was theirs while they were here). Quinn let go of Rachel to rummage in her purse for the keys; and Rachel sniffled wetly through her shivers, her chin tilting up as a hazy, vacant expression clouded her face.

“Hhh...*snfl*...” The blossoming tickle deep in the back of her nose made her head fall back even more, and her hood fell off, exposing her face more fully to the frigid air and snow. Quinn glanced up, keys in hand, and felt another pang of fierce protectiveness when she saw how cold and sick and miserable Rachel looked, snow sticking to her hair as her eyes fell shut, and her nostrils—now bright pink with cold—opened wide. “Hhih...hh...hhut'tchhiew!!!” The dark-haired girl pitched forward and sneezed dazedly into the snowstorm, arms wrapped tightly around herself. “Uhhh...*snfl*...exs-s-scuse mbe,” she sniffled wetly, shivering as she wiped the glistening underside of her nose on the back of her glove.

“Bless you, honey,” Quinn murmured, feeling guilty now for not taking better care of her girlfriend as she unlocked the passenger door and helped a shivering, half-numbed Rachel into her seat. As soon as the blonde girl was in the car and the engine was on, Rachel cranked up the heater; but the air that blasted out was as frigid as the air outside, and with an indignant squeak she immediately turned it back off again.

“You gotta wait for the engine to warm up a little first,” Quinn said gently, reaching over and brushing the light dusting of snow from Rachel's hair.

“I know,” the dark-haired girl whined, her voice so miserable she sounded on the edge of tears. “I was j-j-just ch-checking. I'mb j-just...*snfl*...j-just cold...” She raised a gloved hand back to her runny nose, her olive-toned skin unusually pale except for the bright pink flush from the frigid winter air across her cheeks and nose. “Aahh...iiiitchhu!!” She sneezed into the palm of her glove, sick and shivering, and then dissolved helplessly into a string of coughs and stuffy sniffles.

“Aww, baby! God bless you, my poor little angel,” Quinn cooed, taking one hand off the wheel to stroke her girlfriend's snow-dampened hair. “I'm so sorry you're so miserable, Rachie-boo. Why don't you take a look in the glove box? Your dads usually keep some travel kleenex in there, don't they?”

“Uhh...*snghf*...yeah,” Rachel sighed woozily, pulling off her gloves so she could root around inside the dashboard compartment for the tissues. Luckily, Quinn was right, and Rachel grabbed the small box and dropped it hastily in her lap, snatching one and pinching it straight to her cold, pink nose as her eyes welled shut, and a shallow, congested breath caught in her chest. “Aah'tchxshh!!! *Snfl,*” the poor girl bent double in her seat with another stuffy-headed sneeze, straightening up with the damp, crumpled tissue pressed firmly to the underside of her chilled pink nose.

“Bless you, sweetie-pie. I promise we'll be home soon, and we'll get you straight into a nice, hot bath,” Quinn promised, hating how powerless she felt to offer her girlfriend any real comfort.

“'Kay,” Rachel responded feebly, her voice slightly muffled behind the tissues she was rubbing lightly against her cold nose. “Hhh...hhuh...aahISHshhew!!! *Snfl,*” She sneezed again, sick and shivering inside her heavy winter coat. “Ughhh...why cad't I mbake it stop?” she whined quietly to herself, drawing a fresh tissue from the box in her lap and lightly squeezing her runny nose with a fresh sniffle.

“Because you're sick and you have a chill, baby. It's not your fault, you can't help it,” Quinn assured her, reaching out and cranking the heat dial back up now that the engine had warmed up a bit.

“Other people cad't help it,” Rachel grumbled darkly, pausing to blow her runny nose in the soft, clean tissue. It felt good for a moment, but as soon as she was done, she had to sniffle again. It was endless. “Ndot mbe. I spend all day tellig mby body exactly what to do, ahd it always...*snfl*...it always l-listeds...hh-hhuh...” Eyes closed, she pinched her pink nose through the tissue again, rubbing little circles against the undersides of her snot-slicked nostrils. It felt good, but she still knew the effort was completely futile; she was going to sneeze again, and there was nothing she could do about it. Her eyebrows knit together helplessly in anticipation.

“Hheh...hhheh...hht'CHSHsht!!! Ohhh...*snfl.*” The miserable groan escaped her without conscious thought as she straightened up with a hand pressed to her forehead, dizzy and sniffling.

“Bless you, Rachel honey,” Quinn cooed sweetly, watching her poor girlfriend draw another tissue from the box and cup it to her mouth to cover a raspy cough. “I know you're not used to feeling out of control, but we've all been there, I promise. You're sick and freezing, and your body is gonna be calling the shots for a few days. At least if you're gonna be sick, it's at home in Ohio, hmm? Your dads are gonna give you anything you want, and you won't have to take any sick days from school or rehearsal. We're just gonna have the laziest, coziest vacation week anybody ever had, and I'll be right here to cuddle you and take care of you 'till you feel all better. Okay babydoll?” Quinn stroked Rachel's hair again, then turned the heater grate up so it was blowing hot hair straight at Rachel's face.

“Oh...*snfl*...okay,” Rachel nodded weakly, closing her eyes in submission as the hot air from the heating vent began to warm her up again. “That feels good,” she sighed woozily, drawing a fresh tissue to her runny nose and massaging it with a sleepy sniffle.

“Poor baby, you haven't been sick in a long time, have you?” Quinn sighed, keeping one hand resting firmly on her girlfriend's leg and rubbing gentle patterns with her thumb there. “You just don't know how to slow down at all.”

“I thidk I'mb...*snfl*...I'mb figuridg it out,” Rachel yawned, leaning back limply against the seat and looking over at the blonde girl with a sleepy smile. “Thadks for mbakidg mbe combe hombe, baby. I'mb really g-glad we're ndot still at the roller rindk.” She kept lightly rubbing and pinching her pink nose through the damp wad of tissues as she spoke, eyes glazed and half-closed.

“You're welcome, sweetie-boo,” Quinn smiled, relieved that Rachel wasn't mad at her for pushing her to go home early. “I just wanna make you feel better, you know.”

“Yeah. I...*snfl*...I doe...hhut'chxeww!! *'Snfl*...Ugh, 'scuse be...hhh...hhtxchsht!! *Snfl.*” Quinn rubbed Rachel's leg as the woozy little starlet pitched forward with two helplessly stuffed-up sneezes in a row, tissues pinched desperately to her unhappy pink nose.

“Bless you baby,” Quinn said for what felt like the dozenth time in as many minutes, pulling into the Berrys' driveway and cutting the engine with a sigh of relief.

“Quind, you doe you...*snfl!*...you dod't have to bless mbe every timbe I...*snghf*...I sndeeze. I thidk it's goihg to be a...a lot.” She coughed again, sharp and rattling, and the blonde girl reached out and rubbed her back gently until it passed.

“I know I don't have to, Rach. I like to. It would feel wrong not to, like I was ignoring your suffering, and that's something I could never do. Besides, I don't think I've ever sneezed even once without hearing you bless me...have I?” Quinn teased gently, turning off the car and pulling on the parking brake.

“Uhh...doe,” Rachel admitted, smiling shyly as she shoved the soggy remains of her kleenex into her coat pockets. “Okay, okay, I get it. Cad we go idside ahd get id the bath, ndow?”

“Yep. C'mon, baby, let's go get you nice and toasty.” Quinn stroked a lock of snow-dampened hair back from her girlfriend's face, and leaned in to kiss her, not caring one bit about the slick trickle of wetness smearing across her upper lip from Rachel's runny nose. The dark-haired girl grinned shyly as they pulled apart, reaching out and wiping the wetness off her girlfriend's lip.

“You shoulded't kiss mbe, baby. You'll catch it too,” Rachel groaned, tucking a lock of blonde hair back behind her girlfriend's ear.

“Hmm, yeah, not happening,” Quinn smirked, shaking her head. “If we both catch it, then we both catch it. I'd rather get sick than not get to kiss you.” As if to prove her point, she leaned in and pressed their lips together again; and Rachel submitted willingly.

“Okay, well...if you insist,” the little starlet smiled shyly when they pulled apart again. Then she opened the car door, and a fresh blast of cold, snowy air hit her full in the face. Her pink nose quivered in renewed irritation. “Uhhh...hh...hhet'tchshh!!” Rachel doubled over and sneezed desperately into one hand, eyes squeezed shut against the storm. Before she'd even opened them again, she felt her girlfriend's arm around her shoulders, and a warm kiss on her cold cheek.

“Bless you honey,” Quinn murmured low in her ear, with another kiss for good measure. “Come on, let's get inside before you freeze to death.”

“'Kay,” Rachel agreed woozily, a weak smile spreading across her pale face as she allowed her girlfriend to steer her towards the warmth of the house.

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thx darlings, glad you're enjoying this! now enjoy a little contagion... wink.png

--WBB

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Polar Vortex

Part 4

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When Rachel woke up the next morning, she found herself all alone in her childhood bedroom, her girlfriend nowhere to be seen. She gave a soft whine of unhappiness as she sat up and rubbed her eyes, even though there was no one to hear it. Her head felt fuzzy, like she was underwater, and the rest of the world was far away. She wanted to go back to sleep; but now that she was awake, she couldn't ignore the dull pounding in her temples or the raw ache in the back of her throat. She just wanted her girlfriend to cuddle her and stroke her hair until the strange, woozy feelings and aches passed, and she felt like herself again. And she wanted a hot cup of ginger tea with honey. But not as much as she wanted Quinn to appear in her doorway right this very moment.

Since the power of wishful thinking alone didn't seem to be summoning her girlfriend quickly enough, and since she didn't trust her hoarse, stuffy voice enough to yell, the cranky little starlet finally forced herself out of bed and into a standing position. She felt chilly, even though her skin was all sweaty, and she stumbled to her walk-in closet to pull on her old robe, soft and fleecy, the same one that had been hanging there ever since she'd left for college two years ago. Thank god my dads are so sentimental, she thought wryly as she pulled it on sleepily over her pajamas. Then she shoved her feet into her favorite fuzzy slippers (which she had brought with her from New York—Quinn must've left them by the bed for her when she got up. Which was a nice gesture, though not as nice as actually being there in person would've been).

“Hhuh...'chhishew!! *Snfl,*” The woozy little starlet sneezed dazedly into the cuff of her robe, and reached for the box of tissues sitting on the bedside table. Grumbling softly to herself, she wiped her nose and stumbled sleepily towards the kitchen, where the faint sounds of music and clatter could be heard. She found Quinn humming along to the radio and making blueberry pancakes, still in her pajamas, but with Rachel's dad's Kiss the Chef, I'm Fabulous apron over the top. The blonde girl also had a smudge of flour across one cheek, which Rachel normally would've found adorable enough to instigate some early-morning make-out fun; but not today.

“I woke up all by mbyself,” The dark-haired girl croaked out miserably, leaning against the kitchen doorway with the box of tissues still cradled in her arms.

“Aww, good morning baby boo,” Quinn cooed, putting aside her whisk and coming around the kitchen island to wrap Rachel up in her arms. The little starlet went immediately limp, burying her face against her girlfriend's throat with a soft sigh.

“Mby head's all fuzzy. I feel like I'mb stoned,” Rachel mumbled, leaning more heavily on Quinn as a wave of vertigo rolled over her. The blonde girl cradled her and murmured soothingly in her ear, her cool fingers playing gently through sleep-mussed locks of dark hair. It felt like heaven.

“You've just got a fever, starfish,” Quinn sighed, feeling the heat radiating from the shorter girl's skin. “Why don't we get you nice and cozy on the couch, and then I'll bring you some breakfast, hmm?”

“I'mb ndot hundgry,” Rachel sighed, straightening up as she felt another itchy, irritable sneeze blossoming in the back of her head. “Uhhh...*snfl*...she drew a fresh tissue from the box she still held, holding it woozily in front of her face as Quinn pushed her gently down into a chair at the kitchen table. “Aahiiitchoo!!! *Snfl.*” Her shoulders jerked weakly, nose pinched tight in the soft, clean tissue. She sniffled weakly, rubbing the tissue back and forth across her nostrils.

“Bless you, baby,” Quinn sighed, standing protectively over her snuffling girlfriend and playing with her hair. “I'm not surprised that you don't have much of an appetite...but you still have to eat a little something to go with all these awesome vitamins and cold pills your dads left for you. See? I know you know they have to be taken with food, because you tell me the same thing every time I have a cold. So, I'm making your favorite vegan pancakes, see? With blueberries and everything. You just have to eat a little, okay sweetie-boo?” Quinn smiled sweetly and stroked her girlfriend's fever-flushed cheek.

“Ohh...okay,” Rachel yawned, a small smile spreading across her face as she soaked up her angelic girlfriend's loving attention. She'd always loved taking care of Quinn when she the blonde girl wasn't feeling well...but sometimes she forgot—since it happened so rarely—that letting Quinn take care of her felt almost as good. Apart from the fever, stuffy head, chills and body aches, that is. “Thadks, adgelfish. I love you.”

“Aww, starfish...I love you too,” Quinn beamed, leaning down and kissing her lightly on the lips. “Now c'mon, I'm gonna get you a nice hot cup of tea, and then you can pick something fluffy and fun for us to watch while I finish up the pancakes, ohhh...okay?” The blonde girl turned her head to one side and cupped a hand to her mouth to cover a raspy, painful-sounding cough, that lasted more than a few moments. Rachel frowned in instant worry, recognizing the sound of the painful cough that came over her poor angel every now and again.

“Uhh...sorry,” The blonde girl wheezed softly, rubbing a hand across her chest. “It's just my asthma cough,” she added preemptively, as if she knew exactly what Rachel was about to say. Since the car accident that had left her confined to a wheelchair for their last semester of high school, Quinn had scar tissue in her lungs—and she always would. Not enough to ruin her life, thank goodness, but enough to create a few challenges that she had to be continually conscientious about; including mild but persistent asthma, that tended to flare up badly in cold weather or when she got sick.

“Bullshit!” Rachel exclaimed, her voice slightly muffled behind the crumpled tissue as she wiped her nose again. “The asthma cough always flares up slowly, Quind. You...*snfl*...you doe that. Udless you get sick, ahd thed it just combes out of ndoewhere.” The dark-haired girl raised an eyebrow, trying to look stern and commanding despite her feverish wooziness.

“Honey, I'm fine,” Quinn murmured, dropping another soft kiss on Rachel's lips, followed by a crooked half-grin. “I know how you worry, Rach, but I promise this time it's nothing. It's just the dumb polar vortex, okay? It's thirty degrees colder now than it was when we left New York yesterday, and my body just needs to adjust. I'm not sick, I feel fine. Okay?” She coughed again, and took a hasty gulp of water. Rachel frowned.

“You...*snfl*...you ndeed your idh-haler...” Rachel sniffled, her breath catching sharply in her chest. Her cold leaked gently from her twitchy pink nose as she raised the crumpled tissue in her hand back to her face. “Aahh...aahishhhew!! Hhut'chheww!!! Ugh...*snfl.*” The little starlet groaned miserably as she nuzzled her cold-stuffed nose through the damp tissue, blinking dizzily.

“Aww, honey, God bless you,” Quinn crooned gently, rubbing her girlfriend's warm back sympathetically. Rachel hardly ever sneezed twice in a row like that—and she hardly ever got a fever, either. The poor thing hadn't even known what a fever felt like when she'd said to Quinn, 'my head feels fuzzy.' It was perfectly obvious to the blonde girl that her baby was even sicker now than she had been last night; and Quinn wasn't about to just sit idly by and watch.

“Come on, my love, let's get you cozy on the couch before you pass out. Then we can get some medicine into you,” Quinn sighed, stroking a few locks of dark hair back behind her girlfriend's ear.

“But your...” Rachel started to protest; but Quinn silenced her with a finger on her lips.

“I already used my inhaler half an hour ago. Okay? And I'm making tea for both of us. If you'll just cooperate and get your cute butt on the couch, that is.”

“Ohhh...*snfl*...okay,” Rachel agreed, smiling weakly as Quinn pulled her to her feet. “But I'mb ndot watching ady weird doumbedtaries. I dod't care how mbady awards they wod, it's still depressidg. *Snghf.*

“Whatever you want, baby,” Quinn promised, squeezing her shoulder with a goofy little grin as they stumbled awkwardly toward the living room couch. “I'll be back in five minutes with tea and pancakes and happy pills, okay my love?” She tucked her fever-flushed girlfriend into the couch with the soft, cozy afghan that Rachel's great-grandma Shirley had knit by hand, and kissed her lightly on her warm forehead.

“I'd...*snfl*...I'd rather have you thad the mbedicide,” Rachel smiled sleepily, drawing a fresh tissue from the box Quinn placed in her lap and blowing wetly into it.

“Well you're gonna get both, missy. Nothing's too good for my starfish.” Quinn sat on the edge of the couch, smoothing down the blankets and leaning in for one more kiss before she went back to the kitchen. She could feel Rachel's soft, hitching intake of breath against her lips as they kissed, but she didn't pull back right away; there was just something undeniably sexy about the feeling of that full lower lip quivering against her own, and the soft, helpless sound in the back of her girlfriend's throat as their lips parted, and Rachel gave in to another sick, stuffy sneeze.

“Aah'chshht!! *Snfl,*” Rachel shivered with the force of the desperate sneeze, tissue pressed firmly to her cold-stuffed nose to protect Quinn, who pulled back just enough to avoid getting headbanged. “Uhhh...*snfl*...sorry, baby,” the dark-haired girl sighed woozily. “I tried to hold it id, but I...*snfl!*...I just coulded't help it.” She sniffled and squeezed her runny nose gently through the crumpled tissue, still trying to squash the congested tickle that insisted on making her sneeze every few minutes.

“It's okay, Rach. I like your cooties, and your cute little snuffly sneezes.” Quinn winked, and Rachel actually giggled a little, charmed by the notion that her girlfriend still thought she was cute when she was half-drowning in snot.

“I guess you really do love mbe, huh?” The little starlet joked weakly, settling back against the cushions.

“I guess I really do,” Quinn agreed, standing up from the couch and dropping one final kiss on her girlfriend's warm forehead. “Be right back, angel.” Rachel watched her go with a goofy smile, sure that no one else on earth could ever make her feel better like her blonde angel. As Quinn left the room, Rachel noticed her bend forward with another raspy cough; and then, from down the hall, the dark-haired girl was certain she heard a muffled 'hht'chshhew!!' as Quinn disappeared through the swinging kitchen door.

So much for the polar vortex, Rachel thought with a frown as she listened to her girlfriend's poorly muffled coughs and sneezes from the kitchen. Good thing we've got tea and vitamins for everyone...if she wants me to take it, then she has to take it too!

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aww how sweet was quinn! I need to experience someone taking care of me that good someday lol. so.. now we just need to see how they'll take care of each other wink.png

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The way you write these two makes my heart melt! Perfect and completely adorable! Now Quinn's getting sick ;) perfect.

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thanks for chiming in, darlings! here is more contagious faberry fun for you!! happy weekend :)

--WBB

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Polar Vortex

Part 5

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Once Quinn brought out the breakfast tray of piping-hot, syrup-drenched blueberry pancakes, Rachel gave in and ate some; and when Rachel insisted that they both take the vitamins and cold pills, Quinn didn't have the energy or motivation to argue. They watched cartoons and sipped hot ginger tea, and it wasn't long before the dark-haired girl fell asleep on the couch, with her head nestled comfortably in her girlfriend's lap. Quinn didn't have any problem being used as a human pillow; the couch was cozy, the hot tea calmed her raspy cough, and she loved the feel of Rachel's warm body cuddled up to her, even if she was asleep the whole time. The blonde girl yawned softly as she savored the feel of her girlfriend's silky hair between her fingers, gently stroking the dark strands even after the little starlet was fast asleep. Her soft, even breathing, combined with the gently falling snow outside the windows, had a trance-like effect on Quinn, and within ten or fifteen minutes they were both fast asleep.

The light pouring in through the living room windows was significantly dimmer when Rachel opened her eyes again; it had to be late afternoon now, inching toward twilight. But it wasn't the shifting light that woke the dark-haired girl. As her sleepy brain came into focus, woozy from fever and congestion and an extra-strength dose of cold medicine, she realized that what woke her was the sound of her girlfriend's congested coughing. It sounded worse than it had in the morning. Rachel frowned and opened her eyes, just in time to see Quinn press a tissue to her nose; a soft, wheezy sound escaping from the back of her throat.

“Hhh...hhih...uht'chhew!!! *Snfl,*” The blonde girl shivered helplessly, wet nose pressed firmly into the tissue as she bobbed forward slightly, muscles clenched tight as she desperately tried to hold her sneeze in a little, to avoid jostling her sleeping baby. Of course, she needn't have bothered; but she didn't know that.

“You're gettidg sigck,” Rachel murmured croakily, yawning as she slowly sat up.

“Aww, baby, I'm sorry I woke you,” Quinn sighed, wiping her nose and tossing her crumpled tissue into the growing pile in the little trash can they'd brought out from the downstairs bathroom. Then she reached out and felt Rachel's face, trying to judge whether her fever was getting better or worse.

“You dided't wake mbe,” Rachel shook her head drowsily. “I just coulded't sleep ady...*snfl*...adymbore.” She sighed, drawing a tissue from the box on the coffee table and blowing her stuffy nose prodigiously, until her head finally felt a little bit clear again. “Uhh. That's better.”

“I think I better take your temp,” Quinn sighed, leaning in and kissing her girlfriend's hot forehead. “If your fever isn't any better, then it's time for some more drugs.” She stood up from the couch with a yawn, stretching her back and rubbing her eyes; then she doubled over with a fresh string of rattling, congested coughs.

“You need the drugs too, Quinn. And your inhaler,” Rachel frowned, watching her girlfriend straighten up wheezing and rubbing her chest.

“Uhh, yeah, m'okay Rach. Be right back,” the blonde girl sighed woozily, rubbing her eyes as she shuffled down the hall to find the thermometer. Rachel grumbled crankily to herself, frustrated by the fact that she could see Quinn getting sick right in front of her eyes, but couldn't quite do anything about it while she felt so sick and woozy herself.

“Got it,” Quinn announced with a soft yawn when she reappeared a minute later, holding up the trusty ear thermometer from the Berrys' hall closet. “Now let's...hhuh...” She stopped abruptly beside the coffee table, sniffling softly as her eyes narrowed ominously. “Hhh...*snfl*...” The blonde girl raised a hand absently, pressing the back of her sleeve up to her runny nose as she twisted her upper body away from the girl on the couch. “Hh...hh...hhut'chiishew!! Ughh, s-sorry...*snfl*...uhh'chxt!!” She sneezed dazedly into her sleeve again, the thermometer dangling limp and forgotten in her other hand for the moment.

“Bless you, angelfish,” Rachel sighed, reaching out and tugging on the leg of her girlfriend's pajama pants to pull her back to the couch. “Combe od, get back under the blankets with mbe. You're shivering, baby.”

“I'mb okay,” Quinn grumbled, but she did snatch a tissue from the box, sniffling and pinching her nose as she sat down beside her girlfriend. “Combe on, let me...*snf*...let me just take care of you first, 'kay babe?”

“Okay,” Rachel sighed, submissive for once as she tilted her head to the side and allowed her girlfriend to stick the thermometer in her ear. It only took a moment to beep.

“101.2,” Quinn frowned at the readout, then kissed her girlfriend's warm temple. “You're...*snfl*...you're definitely getting more drugs.”

“What about you?” Rachel asked, reaching out and taking the thermometer from Quinn's hand.

“What about me?” Quinn asked, raising an eyebrow impassively.

“What about, you letting me take your temp?” Rachel sighed, waving the thermometer in Quinn's face. “I let you do me, Quinn. It's...*snfl*...it's odly f-fair...hhit'chxuh!! *Snfl,*” She snatched a fresh tissue and pinched it roughly to her nose as she sneezed, shivering weakly.

“Bless you,” Quinn said gently, stroking her girlfriend's hair back while the little starlet sniffled and wiped her runny nose.

“Dod't chandge the subject,” Rachel grumbled crankily from behind her damp tissue. “You caught mby stupid germbs ahd ndow you're gettig sigck too. I...*snghf*...I doe what your sick-cough souhds like.”

“Oh you do?” Quinn smiled a little, warmed by her girlfriend's fierce protectiveness over her even when the other girl was so sick and weak herself. But it didn't stop her from feeling guilty for making her sniffly, feverish girlfriend worry.

“Yes. I do. And I...*snfl*...I doe you dond't feel good,” Rachel sighed, a sympathetic half-smile on her face. “So cand I please take your temp, ahd thed we cad both get sombe...*snfl*...sombe happy drugs?” She wiped her nose again, but it wasn't enough to calm the itchy-wet tickle that was traveling up the back of her nose, and into her sinuses. She dropped the thermometer in her lap to pinch the crumpled tissue to her runny nose with both hands. “Aahhh...*snfl*...iiiitchu!!!” Rachel pressed the damp tissue snugly to her pink nose as she sneezed, head spinning dizzily. She groaned softly, opening her bleary eyes and sniffling wetly behind the tissue.

“Bless you, babycakes,” Quinn cooed, gently stroking Rachel's hair as the woozy little starlet sniffled and blew her nose again. “Poor little thing, you've got such a runny nose. You 're gonna feel better after another dose of all the good stuff,” she sighed, gesturing to the package of Tylenol cold pills lying on the coffee table, beside a bottle of immune-boosting natural supplements and another of zinc lozenges. Then she coughed again, hand cupped absently over her mouth as her chest rattled painfully.

“I'mb ndot takidg adythig undtil you do,” Rachel sniffled, holding up the thermometer again. They glowered at each other for a moment, both sick and cranky and trying to be in charge at the same time. Then Quinn cracked a weary, defeated half-smile.

“Okay, okay,” the blonde girl sighed, dropping her head back against the couch cushions and tilting her ear up. Rachel smiled triumphantly, and gently slipped the end into Quinn's ear, where it promptly beeped out its answer.

“100.4,” The dark-haired girl read from the little flashing screen, shaking her head with a soft sigh of regret. “I told you.”

“I know,” Quinn sighed, taking the thermometer from her girlfriend's hands and putting it aside on the coffee table without bothering to look at it. “I knew you were right, Rach...I just...didn't wanna deal with it,” she yawned, rubbing her eyes as she snuggled up against her girlfriend's side, pulling the blankets up more securely over both of them. “I wanted to take care of you.”

“Well you are takidg care of mbe,” Rachel shrugged, cuddling up to Quinn and kissing her cheek. “But ndow I get to take care of you, too. Okay?” The little starlet ran her fingers through her girlfriend's loose blonde hair, something that she always found heavenly when Quinn did it to her. It seemed to have the desired effect, and the blonde girl sighed deeply, dropping her head down onto her girlfriend's shoulder and closing her eyes briefly.

“Okay,” she agreed softly, reaching out and snatching a fresh tissue from the box without lifting her head from Rachel's shoulder. “Hhuh...*snfl*...” Her breath hitched weakly as she pinched her cold-filled little nose through the tissue; and Rachel could feel the weak shiver that ran through her body a second before her eyes squeezed shut. “Hhutchxsh!! *Snfl.*”

“Bless you,” Rachel murmured, handing Quinn a fresh tissue as the blonde girl sniffled and hitched again, raising her head woozily. A thin trickle of clear snot leaked slowly from one delicate pink nostril.

“Th-thadks,” Quinn sniffled, eyes barely open as she pressed the clean tissue firmly to her glistening nostrils, already trembling wide open again in helpless anticipation. “Uhh'tcheww!! *Snfl*...Hh—hhh—hhehiiishu!!! *Snfl,*” The blonde girl sneezed desperately, sniffled, and sneezed again, bobbing forward on the couch in helpless submission. Dazedly, she sat up sniffling and coughing sharply into the crumpled tissues.

“Bless you, bless you,” Rachel cooed, rubbing her girlfriend's back sympathetically. “Mby poor little asthmatic baby. I thidk you ndeed the drugs mbore thad...*snghf!*...mbore thad I do.”

“I'll take themb if you do,” Quinn shrugged, smiling weakly behind her wadded tissues.

“'Kay,” Rachel agreed easily, shaking out two doses of cold pills and vitamins on the coffee table in front of them. Then she frowned. “Uhh, I thidk we forgot sombethig. *Snfl.*” Quinn raised an eyebrow. “We...*snfl*...we dod't have adythig to...to swallow theb with...*snfl*...aah'iiishht!!!” The dark-haired girl sneezed breathlessly into a fresh tissue, then immediately pinched it tighter for a wet, congested blow.

“Bless you, starfish,” Quinn cooed, stroking Rachel's hair again as the woozy starlet blew her runny nose. “I'll go get us sombe water, okay? And maybe a snack, too? I could go for some...*snfl*...sombe cinnamond toast.” The blonde girl stood up and yawned, which quickly dissolved into another bout of rattling coughs.

“Baby, I dod't wadt you wearing yourself out for mbe,” Rachel frowned, reaching out and grabbing a handful of her girlfriend's pajama pants to keep her from moving any further away from the couch. “Why dod't you stay here, ahd let mbe go this timbe? You already...*snfl*...mbade us breakfast.”

“Rach, it's fine. I really don't feel that bad, okay? I'mb ndot...*snfl*...not running a marathon, I'mb just going to the kitchen. One of us has to, and you still have a higher fever thand mbe, so I'mb still in charge here. Got it?” Quinn put both hands on her hips and raised one eyebrow, summoning as much of her old HBIC energy back from her Cheerios days as she could muster. It didn't serve to intimidate her girlfriend any; but, almost as good, Rachel found it so adorable she didn't have the heart to argue any more.

“Okay, babe,” The dark-haired girl smiled sweetly. Quinn smiled weakly back, and leaned down to give her girlfriend a soft kiss on the lips.

“Good girl. Be right back,” Quinn murmured, beaming sleepily; then her expression dissolved in an instant, and she leaned over the coffee table to snatch a fresh tissue from the box. “Uht'cheww!!! *Cough*cough,* *snfl*...ughh, fuck mbe. The blonde girl sniffled and sighed, gently massaging the pink underside of her nose in the soft tissue as she straightened up woozily.

“As soond as we're both feelidg better, huh baby?” Rachel teased gently, giving Quinn a sleepy, sexy smirk from the couch. Quinn rolled her eyes, but couldn't help smiling back.

“Yes, dear,” the blonde girl chuckled weakly, taking several more clean tissues from the box, firmly wiping her runny nose as she stumbled off to the kitchen, coughing and sniffling.

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Aw I love these two! And this. Super delicious and super adorable smile.png

My thoughts exactly! I love that both of them are sick :) Always makes it all the more adorable! Please keep it going! (sorry for my late reply btw!)

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hello darlings! thanks for the reviews, I'm always glad to know people are actually reading and enjoying. luckily for you all, I don't give a rat's ass about football, so tonite equals me writing a new update. enjoy! (and if you do care about football, then I hope your team wins. lol!)

cheers,

--WBB

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Polar Vortex

Part 6

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They were halfway through Pitch Perfect, and Quinn was starting to feel not-so-terrible now that the drugs were kicking in. She had Rachel's warm body curled up half on top of her under the blankets, and the extra-strength cold medicine they'd both swallowed was making her feel slow, relaxed, and a little loopy. She was still pretty congested, but at least her nose wasn't actively running anymore. Having to sniffle continuously was exhausting, and it kicked up her asthma cough, which could lead to a lot of badness if she wasn't careful. So, on the whole, lying here limply on the Berrys' couch with her head spinning slightly, and a raw, but dulled itch in the back of her head that traveled from her stuffy nose back into her ears and throat, wasn't so terrible. Rachel was probably the single best snuggler on the whole entire planet, Quinn was pretty sure; and she really didn't have any desire to move when she had her baby girl cuddled up to her like this, warm fingers tracing patterns over her bellybutton.

The only problem was, her throat was starting to hurt. A lot. Every breath felt like sandpaper, and she couldn't breathe through her nose to stop it. Normally, if she was sick, Rachel would bring her tea practically every half hour; but right now, Quinn obviously wasn't going to ask her girlfriend—who seemed more asleep than awake anyway—to get up off the couch, feverish and half stoned on cold medicine. Cough drops. That's what I need, the blonde girl thought sleepily; that way she'd only have to get up once, and she could bring back a whole bag of them so she wouldn't run out until bedtime. She knew the Berrys always kept Ricola drops in the kitchen cabinet for vocal emergencies. At least, they always had back when she and Rachel had lived here. Hopefully their sentimental nature would dictate that they'd still keep everything around the house that Rachel liked, even two years after she'd moved out.

“Hhuh'txchsh!! *Snfl,*” The half-asleep little starlet sneezed dazedly against Quinn's chest, raising a hand from under the blankets—still holding a crumpled tissue—and pressing it to pink nose.

“Bless you babe,” The blonde girl murmured, surprised at how soft and raspy her voice sounded. She trailed her fingers lightly up and down Rachel's warm back under the blankets.

“Thag you,” The dark-haired girl yawned, pinching her nose in the crumpled tissue and giving a sleepy, wet blow. “You souhd like you're losidg your voice.”

“I doe,” Quinn sighed, pulling her hand out of the blankets as she abruptly started to cough. Rachel shifted so she was lying next to the blonde girl instead of on top of her, and rubbed soothing circles over her stomach while she coughed. When the itchy, jagged cough finally stopped, Quinn's breath was wheezy and shallow, and she forced herself into a sitting position so she could breathe a little easier. Rachel followed suit.

“Shit, that souhds bad,” the little starlet groaned anxiously, as she looked around and realized they had only empty tea cups in front of them. “Okay, I gotta get up ndow. You...*snfl*...you ndeed your idhaler, ahd sombe fresh tea, ahd the...the h-hubidifier...*snfl*...hhut'chshx!!” Rachel shivered visibly as she sneezed into a fresh tissue, and straightened up wiping her nose.

“Bless you, Rachie-boo,” Quinn murmured, trying to keep her voice soft so it wouldn't hurt as much. “Dod't get up, okay? Stay there, you're burndig up. I'll...*snf*...I'll get mby owd tea.” The blonde girl drew another tissue from the box—which, between the two of them, was dwindling pretty rapidly—and tenderly pinched her raw pink nose for a soft blow.

“Doe,” Rachel whined, sticking out her lower lip in a classic Berry pout. “You...*snghf*...you cad't breathe right, Quind. I'md ndot...l-lettig you do ady...*snfl*...ady mbore chores...” Rachel kept talking even as it was clear she was going to sneeze again; her pink nostrils quivered and huffed, her eyes narrowed, and she drew the damp tissue in her hand close to her face, hovering absently in midair in woozy anticipation. “Aah'iitchiew!!! *Snfl.*”

“God bless you,” Quinn murmured, reaching out and rubbing her girlfriend's leg under the blanket. “Ndow just stay here ahd keep warmb under the covers, okay babe? I prombise I'll be...*cough!!*...I'll be right back.”

“Doeeee,” Rachel whined again, even more emphatically as she rubbed her nose briskly in the damp tissue. “You stay here. You've...*snfl!*...you've beend the ode to do everythig today, ahd ndow you're gettig sigcker thad I amb. I'mb...*snghf*...I'mb gettig your idhaler. Right fuckidg ndow. *Snfl.*” Rachel stood up still snuffling into her tissue, but with an extremely fierce and cranky look in her tired brown eyes.

“Okay,” Quinn agreed simply, a weak half-smile creeping across her face as she sat back submissively against the couch cushions and pulled the blankets up around her. After four years together, she knew when to let Rachel win.

“Okay, thed, good,” the little starlet nodded absently to herself, closing her eyes for one more soft, congested blow into the tissue she held. Then she sighed, dropped it in the trash, and smiled sleepily, leaning down to kiss the blonde girl's warm forehead. “Be right back.”

“'Kay,” Quinn nodded, watching her sniffling baby pull a few more tissues from the box before shuffling off down the hall. A moment after Rachel left the room, the blonde girl heard another muffled sneeze echoing down the hall; and she giggled weakly, which immediately twisted into another painfully sharp cough. Ugh, dammit. Don't laugh, stupid, she silently chastised herself, rubbing her chest absently with one hand. She was glad Rachel was getting her inhaler, she finally admitted to herself. Maybe if she could stop wheezing, her girlfriend wouldn't freak out about letting her make them both some tea...and maybe some more cinnamon toast, too.

At that moment, though, Quinn was spared the need for any further wondering about who would let who make tea when the front door opened, and Rachel's dads walked in. “Hello? Anybody home?” They called, following the light and sound of the TV to the living room.

“Hi,” Quinn croaked sheepishly; then, eyes narrowing, she snatched a tissue, pressing it to her pink nostrils as they opened wide in helpless anticipation. “Aahhchew!! *cough, cough,* *snfl*...aah'chheww!!!” She sneezed, sniffled and coughed dazedly, tissue pressed up firmly to her cold-stuffed little nose.

“Goodness, God bless you sweetheart,” Jacob cooed sweetly as he dropped his heavy winter coat over a chair and crossed the room to sit beside her and feel her forehead. “I thought Rachel was the one who wasn't feeling well.”

“Hhtiiishew!!! *Snfl,*” They all turned and looked up just in time to see the little starlet stumbling back into the room with a hitching, helpless sneeze of her own, one hand pinching a crumpled tissue to her damp nose and the other clutching Quinn's blue rescue inhaler.

“Oh, I see,” Jacob chuckled, shaking his head sympathetically as he looked between the two sniffling girls.

“Bless you, pumpkin,” Michael tutted, wrapping an arm around his daughter's shoulders and kissing her hot forehead.

“Ughh,” she sighed dizzily, closing her eyes.

“You're awfully hot, baby girl. Why don't you get back on the couch with Quinn, and let your dad and I make you both some tea and hot soup for dinner?” Michael suggested gently, knowing that his normally high-energy daughter could get extremely cranky and disagreeable when she wasn't feeling well, and hoping to avoid an argument.

“Yah...that souhds good, Daddy,” the woozy little starlet yawned, rubbing her eyes absently with the inhaler still clutched tight in her hand. “I had to get Quind's idhaler.”

“Thadks, baby,” Quinn croaked out softly, shifting both Jacob and Michael's attention back to her when they heard how raw and raspy her voice sounded.

“Oh my goodness, you poor little things,” Jacob tutted anxiously, looking at their fever-flushed faces and damp, pink noses as Rachel plopped back down beside Quinn on the couch, holding out the all-important asthma medicine to her wheezy girlfriend. “Some Christmas vacation you're getting, huh? I'm going right to the kitchen to make a fresh batch of miso veggie soup, how does that sound?”

“Good,” Rachel nodded while Quinn puffed wheezily on her inhaler. “Will you...*snfl*...p-put id the udond ndoodles? Uhh'iishew!! *Snnnf.*” The little starlet sneezed dazedly into her crumpled tissue, the out-of-focus, ticklish expression still plaguing her face when she straightened up jiggling her pink irritably nose through the damp cotton.

“Of course, sweetheart,” Jacob smiled, ruffling her hair and kissing the top of her head. “And I'll bring you some rosehip tea while you're waiting, okay? With honey and fresh ginger to knock those sniffles out, at least for a little while.”

“Thadks,” Quinn croaked out with a weak smile, putting her head down on Rachel's shoulder with a soft yawn. “I dided't...hhuh...dided't wadt to let Rachel do it...*snfl*...hht'chxeww!! *Cough, cough, cough*...” She cupped her own damp tissue over her mouth, and straightened up wheezing softly despite the fact that they'd all just seen her use her inhaler a moment ago.

“And I'm going to get the humidifier from the hall closet,” Michael said, standing up from the ottoman and gently feeling both their foreheads. “That cough sounds terrible, Quinnie sweetheart. We don't want to send you back to New York with bronchitis, or worse. We'll keep an eye on it tonight, and if it doesn't get better soon I'll call in a prescription for you.”

“Okay,” Quinn agreed easily, relieved to have her surrogate dads around to take care of them both. Now they could stop arguing about who was really in charge, and just lie there and cuddle in peace. It sure was nice to be home in Ohio. “Thag you. *Snghf.*

“Sorry we're mbessig up your vacationd,” Rachel added absently, though she really didn't seem that sorry as she snuggled back into the blankets and Quinn's warmth, closing her eyes with a yawn.

“Don't be sorry, pumpkin,” Jacob assured her, leaning over her and kissing her forehead. “Now we actually get to feel like you need us again for a few days. Just relax, and Daddy and I will take care of everything.”

“'Kay,” Rachel agreed submissively, cuddling up to Quinn's side with a tissue still pressed to her runny nose.

“Hhutchhew!! *Snfl,*” Quinn sneezed weakly into the cuff of her pajama top, too sleepy to lean forward and reach for another tissue in time.

“Bless you honey,” Michael said gently, picking up the box of tissues from the coffee table and depositing it directly into her lap so she wouldn't have to reach for it.

“Thadks,” the blonde girl mumbled softly, not bothering to open her eyes as she drew out a tissue and wiped her stuffy pink nose.

“We'll be right in the kitchen, sweetlings. Just call if you need us,” Jacob hummed gently, giving them both one more kiss on the tops of their heads before allowing his husband to lead him out of the room.

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