Puck helps out a grieving witch
I don't own Glee or any of its franchise.
Unbetaed, but any help will be much appreciated! Thanks to Becca for reminding me that I typed Emma instead of Eve; my bad - too hyped up on pain killers to notice, I guess;D
A/N Feeling better, so I decided to write and this is what came out. I hope you like it and next time it's gonna be Nationals. Quick question though – should New Directions place in top three, win or get the same position as in the actual show? I'll let you decide - although I will say that I'm more for the top three part myself. Enjoy!
"Hey Berry…uhm…thanks for…uhm…I really appreciate it."
I stood completely frozen, watching Azimio of all people stumble through an apology to Rach, who looked coolly up at her old bully.
The black jock had walked up to us just after our first class had ended and started mumbling, only to be pushed rather harshly forward by a stone faced Sunshine behind him. I didn't really get a chance to do much of anything, 'cause a second later, Azimio had grabbed Sunshine and dragged her away, leaving me to look down at my own girl with my jaw hanging open in shock and confusion.,
"Oh don't look like that, Noah," Rachel huffed, turning back to her opened locker to finish preparing for her next class. "I don't understand why you're so surprised that Azimio thanked me; after all, I did manage to talk Figgins out of suspending them and also keeping the whole sordid matter off their records."
"Yeah, about that," I took her stuffed backpack out of her hands, 'cause I'm a perfect gentlemen when I want to be, you know, "why did you even do that in the first place? I mean the guy's put you through hell – especially since we hooked up last year. Also, you used to hate his guts for the whole appendix thing too."
Rachel rolled her eyes and wrapped her arm through my free one, like she preferred even as she answered my question softly, "I can't honestly say that I've changed my mind about Azimio, but he is after all, Sunshine's boyfriend and as such worthy of my respect. She only participated in the prom on my say so and the subsequent brawl as well and…Well, I wanted to help her and not him, okay?"
Grinning, I nodded; not really willing to get her mad at me by pointing out that Sunshine had not needed Rachel's urging to participate in the fight at prom – she'd practically jumped at the chance. No, really, the tiny foreign exchange student literally jumped into the chaos with a scream of delight, I saw it.
Anyway, Rachel seemed to know I was keeping my mouth shut, but allowed me to do it without any repercussions. So, I kissed her goodbye and handed her back her backpack before turning around to head to my own upcoming class.
On the way there, I frowned a little at the sight of Coach Sylvester stomping through the hall ahead of me, leaving a devastated looking Becky in her wake (and the usual cluster of petrified students, of course). The Down's syndrome girl looked like her world had just ended and her face were lined with tears. I'm not afraid to admit, that I forgot all about my being late for class and walked over to her, ready to open up a can of whoopass on the one who'd hurt her.
"Hey, Becks," I greeted, smiling the gentle smile that I usually reserved for my daughter. "What's up?"
Becky looked up at me, snot pouring out of her nose and her big eyes were puffy and full of tears. "C-Coach Sylvester doesn't like me anymore," she stuttered out and before I knew what happened, the girl had wrapped her arms around me and was downright sobbing into my shirt.
A few moments later, Brittany showed up out of the blue, tearing Becky out of my arms and looking at me like I'd made her cry. Santana's presence appeared only seconds later; I don't know why I was surprised, where one of these chicks was, the other one soon followed.
"What the hell is going on here, Puck?" Santana growled, standing in front of Brittany, who was trying to soothe the still weeping Becky by telling her that she'd take her on that idiotic talkshow of hers to talk about being sad and blue like the color, which coincidentally was a really pretty.
"First off," I held up a hand, wiping the other one free of tears and…other stuff on my jeans, "don't get all up in my face, 'cause Lima Heights or not, you know I'm more badass than you. Second of all, I ain't got no fucking idea; she just started wailing about Coach Sylvester hating her or some shit like that."
Okay, so I wasn't exactly being diplomatic, I realized when my words made Becky sob even louder and bury her blonde head in Brittany's shoulder with a shriek. Santana looked confused, but then shared a quick look with Brittany before looking back at me.
"Coach Sylvester has been on the warpath all day – more than usual," she added when I just raised an eyebrow, 'cause that sweat suit wearing maniac being evil wasn't exactly what you'd call news. "But she usually never, ever says anything to Becky. She's the only one the Coach never bullies."
That was true, I mean, I had seen Coach Sylvester tear a new asshole into a couple of guys who'd tried convincing Becky that she shouldn't wear underwear in her Cheerio's uniform whenever they performed, 'cause it'd be bad luck. Let's just say those motherfuckers still twitched violently and ran away whenever the tall Coach approached.
"Just take her away and get her mood back up," I ordered, gentler now as Becky seemed to calm down a little, "I'll go and talk to Mr. Shue, get him to go to her and force her to get her act together before she lands herself in jail for child abuse."
Santana nodded and led her sort of girlfriend, slash best friend and Becky out of the doors to the parking lot and I turned and prepared my search for Mr. Shue. Then I rolled my eyes, 'cause really, ever since Miss Pillsbury's divorce the dude had only ever been one place whenever he wasn't at glee or in class.
Later that day, I felt like an evil ass when I heard through the grapevine that coach Sylvester's sister had died. Fuck, no wonder she couldn't stand to be around Becky, it'd probably remind her of her sister too much.
But, still, I thought she could've used a lot of other, less nasty ways to get her number one to go away. And that's just what I told her when I cornered her in the office after Kurt and Finn had spewed off some of their nice guy crap and left looking like they were the ones experiencing the loss themselves.
Coach Sylvester looked at me, I mean Looked with a capital L here, and I had to stop myself from bolting right back out of the door, but I reminded myself that I was an awesome, courageous specimen of a man and I wasn't intimidated by this admittedly harsh looking old chick…I wasn't.
"Baby Daddy, I'm not in the mood to listen to your no doubt unintelligent thoughts and ideas; go to Shuester for that, he's feminine enough to handle it. Now go away."
The venomous words were the same as always, but it was clear to anyone with eyes that she was too involved in her grief to put much effort into it, so I deemed it safe enough to get a little bit closer.
"Look, I'm just-" I began, but was interrupted when Coach Sylvester straightened up in her seat and glared at me; I quickly altered my wording and left right after saying, "…just leaving, that's all. See ya."
I stopped short as soon as I came out of her office, spotting Kurt and Finn standing closely together with Dave and Quinn hovering nearby with warning glares to anyone, who seemed to want to use a slushie near their loved ones. I gotta admit, I was secretly impressed when Quinn scowled so evilly at one of the oncoming guys that I recognized as one of those I'd kicked the shit out of at prom, that the dude just smiled sickly and turned right around in the other direction.
A moment later, I reached the quartet and caught Kurt's muttered sentence about helping the grieving coach to heal. "Count me in too," I stated, ignoring the shocked looks they all gave me. I didn't give a crap, I couldn't get the emotionless look in Coach Sylvester's eyes out of my mind; I remembered that look from when I thought I'd almost lost Rach and Caroline and it meant that she was feeling like her world was crumpling around her and she was too damned stubborn to realize it.
Twenty minutes later, Rach came bouncing up to me, lightly scolding me for skipping a few classes until she heard that Sylvester's sister was dead. How she hadn't known I chopped up to the fact that Rachel was deeply engrossed in her prep work for the upcoming Nationals. But, give the girl her due, 'cause as soon as she heard the news, she pulled out a planner and was a lot more instrumental in helping Kurt plan than Finn was.
I just leaned up against the lockers and started talking football with Dave, who looked like a fish out of the water in the middle of us Gleeks. I mean, I wanted to help, but knew from experience that whatever Rach fixed up would wind up being a hell of a lot more useful than anything I could cook up. Besides, I preferred to do the grunt work, and let others do the actual thinking, so I didn't care much.
A few minutes later, Finn shuffled over to join us, looking slightly scared of the intensity that Rach had sent into his step brother and his girlfriend. Dave just grinned when I slapped him on the back and told him to get back in there, since he'd gotten the actual idea.
I know, I wasn't exactly acting like a best friend should, but come on; the look of genuine fear on Finn's face was just too good to pass up.
In the end, the entire glee club was helping with orchestrating the funeral and getting the Coach's sister's stuff organized. Finn and Kurt had dragged me with them to the home where Coach Sylvester's sister had lived to help pack up the stuff she'd left behind, only to get the order to toss everything out by the surviving sister as soon as she entered the smallish room.
Kurt and Finn looked devastated as they slowly began doing what she'd said, so I held up a hand to get their attention before telling them to go home and to leave the packing up to me, since I knew where everything was due to the fact that my long deceased great grandma had lived in the same home.
It was a load of bullshit, but the guys bought it and left, looking slightly relieved to get out of the actual work and I waited for a few moments, until I knew they were gone before going in search of the leader of the home to chat with her about a few things I'd need.
I came home late that night, exhausted and probably smelling like something the cat dragged in, but I didn't really care, 'cause I thought all I'd done was worth it.
As soon as I opened the door, Rachel catapulted in to my arms, only to jump off of me way too soon with a cute little frown on her face. Obviously she shared my theory about stinking up my surroundings. To nip her words in the bud, I just grabbed her hand and walked towards our bathroom, figuring I might as well enjoy myself a little while I showered.
After a very fulfilling shower that involved a lot of stroking and bodily fluids being exchanged, if you know what I'm talking about (wink), I practically had to drag myself back downstairs to eat something and spend some quality time with Caroline, whose energy levels never seemed to match mine. I mean, when I was full of energy, she was sleeping peacefully and when I was more dead than alive, she was more hyper than the energizer bunny himself.
Finally, after a few hours, Rach took pity on me and didn't force me to scramble through my homework and followed me into bed. We talked quietly together for a little while, but I must have dozed off in the middle of our conversation, 'cause next thing I know, Caroline is being placed on my chest and Rachel told me to get ready for the funeral that we were gonna perform at for some reason.
The funeral itself was beautiful and a lot more colorful and original than I'd ever seen before; it seemed like Kurt, Rach and the others had created something fresh, it was a scene right out of Willy Wonka…you know, except for the whole there being a dead person in the room thing.
We all went home to our respective homes afterwards and, in my case at least, tried to get the picture of the tough as nails, Coach Sylvester crying out of my head.
Things moved on, like they always do and the glee club even got a few visits from Jesse, where he passed on a few decent pieces of advice for us. I say few, 'cause the curly haired pansy was way too happy about the whole critiquing part of being a teacher; but long story short; he did come up with a few good ones and we were all the better for it. And it felt nice sticking it to Shelby too; I mean, having her biggest star – albeit graduated – assist us was pretty nice.
In the midst of the preparations for Nationals, and the incessant rehearsals at home that Rach pretty much insisted on (seriously, I think my voice was about to give, she insisted on us rehearsing that much), I noticed that Coach Sylvester wasn't still back to her old self yet. Sure, she'd let Becky back at her side and seemed pretty okay with it, but still; something was missing and I caught her glancing regretfully up in the sky once or twice when I walked past her.
Deciding that my waiting had been long enough, I decided to take a chance. I got up early one Saturday morning, told Rach that I'd be taking Caroline for a little drive. Judging from the suspicious looks she gave me, I knew she wasn't entirely happy with my evasiveness, but I quickly promised to fill her in later and she started getting up to, and I quote, "get the most out of this unexpected burst of alertness."
About an hour later, just as the sun was getting up, I pulled up at the curb at Coach Sylvester's completely normal looking home. I ignored the slightly surprised part of me that had always thought that she lived in some kind of evil dungeon, possibly with Severus Snape guarding her door, and grabbed my babbling kid before walking up and ringing the doorbell.
I gotta say that my heart was pounding a little bit faster than usual as I waited for the door to open. Finally, yet all too quickly, it happened and I was looking at the coach's maid, who looked pityingly up at me when I asked to see her boss.
A moment later, Caroline and I were escorted in to this humongous room that was filled with trophies and not much else. Coach Sylvester was sitting by a big mahogany desk that looked like it was about to crack under all the medals lying unceremoniously on top of it.
"Baby Daddy?" Coach Sylvester looked up at me with confusing battling her usual rage. I held out Caroline, hoping that the somewhere inside of her, the Coach had an inkling of a real female and wouldn't want to hurt such a precious little kid as mine.
It seemed to work, 'cause Coach Sylvester merely sighed and leaned back in her chair. "What are you doing here?"
Sighing mentally in relief, I walked closer and shrugged. "Look, Coach; I'm not big on being nice and shit; especially to you, 'cause you're…well, slightly evil and stuff, but I can see you're hurting and I wanted to give you this even though you said you didn't want it."
I nodded with my chin at the door, signaling that whatever I had for her, it was outside. Coach Sylvester's eyes narrowed ominously, but to my big surprise, she didn't actually say anything and just followed me a few seconds later, as I made my way back outside.
As soon as we were on her doorstep, Coach Sylvester froze at the sight of my truck. Not the vehicle itself, of course, but what was in the pickup part of the truck. It was overflowing with all of the crap I'd painstakingly sorted through that day in the nursery home when I'd sent Finn and Kurt home. I'd gotten a special permission from the director of the nursing home to store the deceased Sylvester's belongings in their basement until I could figure out a way to store it myself.
And well…I'd just been waiting for a little time to pass before I sought out Coach Sylvester to give her back the things that she'd denied wanting that day – judging from the slowly dawning look of pure joy on the old chick's face, I'd say it was a wise choice.
"I don't have much of anything from my old life with me," I mumbled, feeling a tad bit awkward as the notoriously nasty Coach Sylvester looked almost teary eyed at the stuff in my truck, "I've never really wanted it, but I'm a dad now and…well, I didn't want you to regret not having anything from your sister, aside from than grungy old bear of hers. Besides," I looked away, knowing my words would cause a reaction I didn't really want to see, "did you know that your sister kept a journal? She wrote a lot of nice stuff in there; I didn't read all of it, don't worry, but…I don't know, fuck I just think you made a bad choice that day and should get these things back, so you have a lot more memories of your sister, okay?"
The last part sounded a little too defensive, I know, but come on, I was sort of consoling McKinley's biggest bitch and it was making me slightly edgy to tell you the truth.
"Baby Da-Puckerman," Coach Sylvester sounded a bit hoarse, but more like she used to, so I managed to look at her. Aside from a little too bright eyes she did seen normal, thank God. "Thank you for this…" We stood silently for a few moments until Coach Sylvester straightened up and came back to her senses for the first time since her sister's passing.
"Now what are you standing around here for; give me that no doubt only intelligent Puckerman of yours and get moving. I want all the stuff in my house before the next hour is up or else I will make you see that I'm not just a pretty face. Move it!"
Grinning surreptitiously, I handed over my daughter, who seemed overly happy with the prospect of getting to pull the coach's hair and got to work, feeling a little pleased with myself if I have to be honest.
"Move it, Baby Daddy before I get out my gun and start some shooting practice on you; with your speed there's no way I'd miss!"
Yeah, okay, so maybe I shouldn't tell anyone that I'd been the one to put the usual grimace of a smile back on Coach Sylvester's face; at least not until after Nationals…
A/N Thanks for the reviews, both signed and unsigned; I really loved getting them and they truly help me to sit down and write :D Nudge nudge wink wink;) Hehe.
Until Next Time