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The following is a work of fiction. Any statements regarding any person, place, or other entity (real or imaginary) is the sole responibility of the author of this work of fiction. Fan Works Inc. takes no responsibility for the content of user submitted stories. All stories based on real people are works of fiction and do not necessarily reflect on the nature of the individuals featured. All stories based on other copyrighted works are written with authors knowing that these works violate copyright laws.

Please see the Terms of Service for more information.

 

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home is where i call the ghost my own
By simplysweetperfection

 


She doesn't cry until her fathers finally leave.

They've gone off looking for some of New York's famous pizza, claiming they were starving despite the fact they had lunch not an hour and a half ago, which leaves her alone in the hotel room.

Within the first five minutes all the clothes she packed in her little pink suitcase are thrown hazardously across the room. It's an assortment of dresses, skirts, blouses, knee high socks, and nearly everything else she normally wears. But each fabric has a memory of his smile, his laugh, his hands, him, associated with it.

She twists a grey skirt angrily in her hands, nearly ripping it in the process, and tries to forget the way he grinned and murmured convincing words into her neck before sliding his hand under skirt after a Glee club rehearsal that ran a bit late. She remembers the way she clutched at his back, moaning into his skin, too distracted to be bothered with dangers of being caught doing what exactly it was they were doing in the boys locker room.

Finn smiled for hours after that, no matter how much she tried to make him stop.

There's a weight pressing against her chest that's making it difficult to breathe and her hands are shaking so violently the skirt flutters to the ground, on top of a blouse Finn said he really loved.

Everything she owns is somehow connected to Finn, including the little lacy camisole she planned on surprising her husband with.

With every sweep of her eyes across the room Rachel is assaulted with yet another unwanted memory that increases the pressure on her chest and the tears gathering in her eyes, until she has to shut herself inside the bathroom where there's nothing but the stale whiteness of the walls for her to stare at.

She curls up in the tub, covering herself in towels when she shivers violently and her teeth begin to chatter. The bathroom isn't cold, it's rather warm actually, but she feels cold.

Rachel tries to bury her tears and heartache into the white rough edge of the towels, but with every slow blink she can see the way he smiled at her through a plane of glass, or the way he waved with everyone else, or the way his tie fluttered as he ran along side the train. The rough fabric scratches at her cheeks and rub her skin raw, but she doesn't pay it much attention as she remembers the way he broke her heart.

Shifting uncomfortably, Rachel digs her hand into her pocket until her fingers close around her phone that was previously jabbing into her side. She has it out faster than she can really stop and think about how stupid she's being. She knows it's a terrible idea, she knows, but that doesn't stop her from finding his number and pressing dial. The plastic edge of her bedazzled phone case digs into her skin rather painfully when she slowly raises it to press against her ear.

It only rings twice before there's a slight click and the sound of his breathing fills her.

He doesn't say anything, nor does she, but a sniffle escapes her until she's pressing her hand to her mouth in order to keep the sobs from leaving her. She feels like if she starts crying, really crying, she won't ever stop.

There's rustling on the other end of the line, and she imagines him spreading out across his bed pressing his phone to his ear with his eyebrows scrunched together. It makes her lip quiver.

"I-" She gasps lightly, unable to finish, and her heart begins to pound painfully when he murmurs her name softly in response. "Finn, I can't-"

"Me too."

"Finn." Hot thick tears are flowing freely from her eyes and when she brushes her fingers to collect them her knuckles are smudged black from her makeup. Her eyes sink down to the towels and she see's the stark contrast between the sheer whiteness of the fabric and the wild streaks her mascara left.

The makeup swirls like a drop of paint in a bowl of water, and it reminds her of the way she had to apply enough makeup in order to fool her fathers into believing she hadn't been crying for the better part of the train ride to New York. It reminds her of the way his shaky hands hand grabbed her pink suitcase, makeup carefully assorted for her wedding day inside, before kissing her goodbye and practically forcing her onto the train.

(He didn't force her into anything, she knows that, but she doesn't want to admit it to herself. She could have changed his mind and stayed if she really tried. But she didn't. And she's scared as to what that might mean.)

She gets so angry staring at her carefully applied makeup smeared across her skin, and her hand shakes violently but only this time out of anger. She wants to beat that stupid encouraging smile off his face, the one he wore as he watched her leave.

"I can't- I can't believe you." Her voice is hard and strangely calm, and it frightens her a little.

"Rachel?"

"How could you d-do that to me? To us? What gave you the right?" she demands, and her hand curls into a fist around the rough fabric of a towel. "Who gave you the right to decide if we're together or not? You can't- I mean I won't let you-"

"Rachel."

She shakes her head vigorously and squeezes her eyes closed. "No. Finn, no. You can't just-just leave me!"

"I don't want to," he insists, but she doesn't believe him. How can she believe him when he sent her away with just a kiss and a breezy promise?

"Then don't! We can work this out. We can figure something out somehow. We can do anything but this."

"Rachel, I have to do this."

"For what?" she questions hysterically. "You don't have to prove anything for your father. You're just- you're perfect just how you are. So why," She releases a sharp sob "why are you leaving me?"

"I'm not leaving you," he assures, trying to make his voice as soothing as possible. "I'll never leave you."

"Then what do you call joining the army and pushing me onto a train for New York then?" Rachel doesn't mean to shout but she just does and she can't be bothered to feel bad about it.

"A break." He pauses, exhaling loudly. "It's just a break."

"There isn't a difference!"

"Yes, there is."

She wipes at her tears angrily and spits into the phone, "What is it then, Finn? Why don't you explain to me h-how they're different."

"Leaving is like when you leave camp. You're probably never going back and you're just- you're leaving. Taking a break means that you continue something eventually. We're not...we're not leaving. We're taking a break."

"I don't want to 'take a break'. I want to get married!"

He sighs into the phone. It makes her want to scream and throw her own phone clear across the room where it will hit the door and shatter into a million pieces. "We can't...we couldn't get married like this."

"Like what?" she snaps.

"We're-we're not on the same path anymore. You've got all these great opportunities ahead of you and I...don't. I can't let you marry a loser, okay? That's why you need to go do your own stuff for awhile while I try and fix everything in my life."

She feels some of her anger slip away only for desperation sink in instead. "You're not a loser. And you don't need to fix things on your own. Let me help you."

"You shouldn't have to!" he shouts, and she pulls her phone away from her ear, startled by his exclamation. He takes a long calming breath, and says in a much softer voice, "Look, I don't want you to, uh, be weighed down by me. You're a star Rachel, and all star needs to shine. You've always wanted this, so I'm just pushing you towards it."

"But I want you too," she murmurs, curling around herself a little tighter.

When he doesn't say anything she feels the last of her anger slip away into nothingness until she's feels like all that's left is an empty shell.

"I love you," she croaks after a brief moment of silence, and she has to bite her palm in order to stop from releasing a sob that she's sure will break her into a million pieces.

There's a hitch in his breathing before he exhales shakily, "I love you."

His voice is cracked and broken, and she honestly feels like she could actually die when she listens to him sniffle.

There's sudden shuffling on the other end of the line and Finn sounds hurried and breathless as he says, "Rachel, I can't- I have to- I-" He hangs up quickly and she's left listening to the dial tone.

A pitiful whimper leaves her and she feels like her heart is breaking all over again. She feels abandoned and used and hurt, and she feels like her world is collapsing, which is dramatic even for her. She feels completely and utterly alone curled up in a bathtub with the continuous sound of a dial tone in her ear, and she feels-

She feels sick.

Scrambling out of the tub, Rachel hunches over the toilet and weakly empties the contents of her tiny lunch from her stomach. Black spots cloud her vision and she tries to take deep calming breathes but it's difficult.

She props herself up with one arm, wiping the back of her hand against her mouth and pushes herself up clumsily. Stumbling to the sink, Rachel turns the faucet and leans down to flush water into her mouth, getting rid of the horrid aftertaste. Her throat burns like its on fire, and she knows she won't be performing any song from her vast repertoire soon.

Her eyes sweep across her white-skinned face, carefully taking in her messy appearance. She looks (and feels) like she's just been through a battle and lost.

Releasing a heavy sigh, Rachel wipes at her nose and tears with the sleeve of her dress as her other hand clutches the edge of the sink tightly with shaking arms until something catches her eye.

The ring is still on her finger, shining brightly and as gorgeous as ever, and the very sight of it makes anger curl through her again like a disease.

It's off her finger and clutched in her hand before she really thinks about actively taking it off. The beautiful little diamond digs into the flesh of her palm, reminding her of the way he would press his thumb against it as he assured her that, yes he was ready to get married, and no he wouldn't run out on her.

But he was wrong and he lied to her.

He lied to her.

She throws the ring like it's a baseball (he taught her how to throw one properly on their third official date) and the weak bathroom lights hit it, making it twinkle, and she gasps when it collides with the wall on the opposite side of the tiny bathroom. She already regretted it the second the ring left her hand and the slight ping of metal hitting the wall is like a kick to a heart that is already bruised and broken beyond repair. Pressing a hand to her mouth, Rachel stares at the wall in shock, her entire body trembling.

She can hardly see through her tears as she stumbles towards where the ring landed, and she lands on her knees painfully when she practically collapses. Her hands slide across cool tile and her hysteria grows by the second when she can't see her ring anywhere.

No matter what, Rachel can't lose that ring. If she loses it, she loses him, and she can't lose him. Not after everything.

She finds it eventually, under the sink covered in a thin layer of dust, and she clutches it like it's a lifeline. To her it is. It's her only connection to him besides a week old hickey beneath her breast and a few cute text messages that usually ended in some sort of discussion about the upcoming wedding.

The ring slides onto her finger with ease, right back to where it's supposed to be, and she stares at it dumbly for a moment before her phone vibrates from the tub, pulling her attention away.

Half crawling, half dragging herself, Rachel reaches the tub and grabs her phone from the mess of towels. She squints a little when it shines brightly into her eyes, and Finn's name blinks up at her with an unopened message. Her thumb hovers over it hesitantly before she finally opens it.

She wishes she hadn't.

Rachel starts to really cry, the earth-shattering-your-life-is-collapsing crying, until she can't breathe properly and presses her phone to her chest, like she wants to take the few words written in a little text bubble and wrap them around her heart so it won't hurt anymore.

She wants everything to be okay again, but it's not, and she doesn't know how to fix it.

She doesn't know how to fix them.

[Finn Hudson: 4:52] I love you. I'm sorry. We'll be together again. I promise.

A/N: The title is from the song Ghost to Me by Youth Lagoon.

 

The preceeding was a work of fiction. Any statements regarding any person, place, or other entity (real or imaginary) is the sole responibility of the author of this work of fiction. Fan Works Inc. takes no responsibility for the content of user submitted stories. All stories based on real people are works of fiction and do not necessarily reflect on the nature of the individuals featured. All stories based on other copyrighted works are written with authors knowing that these works violate copyright laws.

Please see the Terms of Service for more information.

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