Characters: Rachel & Kurt, others mentioned.
When/Where: AU. Rachel and Kurt take a walk in the park.
Word Count: 1,181 (6 of ?)
Sitting on a bench in Central Park, Rachel gingerly sipped the no longer scalding hot coffee clutched between her hands. She hoped Kurt wouldn't be too late. He wasn't the most punctual person she knew but he normally didn't keep her waiting this long. And meeting here, instead of at their usual Broadway cafe, had been his idea.
"Rachel," his voice sounded in her left ear, causing her to jump in surprise.
"Don't do that!" she said, turning to give him a well deserved glare. "If I have a heart attack I'm going to haunt you for the rest of your life."
"Sorry," he said, though his expression clearly indicated how un-sorry he was.
"Why did you want to meet here?" she asked after taking another sip of her rapidly cooling coffee.
"A little bird told me that you've been asked to sing at the Tonys next month," he said giddily, sitting down next to her.
"The entire cast has been asked to perform," she said, shaking her head at him. Not that she wasn't honored by the opportunity to perform in front of her peers but her part of the song they'd been asked to sing was barely thirty seconds long.
"But you'll still be on stage at the Tonys," Kurt said happily. "And walking on the red carpet. You'll need several dresses."
"I'll just need one," Rachel said, correcting him, not bothering to explain she'd be in costume for the song. "There's plenty of time."
"And one for Quinn," he said, pulling a bright red binder out of his man-bag. "You did ask her, didn't you?"
"Not yet," Rachel said, not sure how to explain her girlfriend's reluctance to appear in the public eye. She understood Quinn's reasons, mostly, even if she didn't agree.
"Rachel Barbra Berry! This will be your first time on the Red Carpet at the Tonys. She has to go. They're a matching set."
"What are?" she asked.
Kurt silently held the open binder out to her. Putting her cup down, she took it from him. Looking down, she found herself looking at two sketches of Red Carpet worthy gowns. "These are wonderful!" she said, absorbing every detail of the elegance on display. "These are even better than the gown you made for Quinn. Where have you been hiding this talent?"
"The sketches aren't mine," he said reluctantly. "They're from my new collaborator."
"You didn't tell me you had a new partner," Rachel said, gently closing the binder and handing it back. "What're they like?"
"Not a new partner," Kurt protested. "This is just someone with the ability to sketch elegant clothes, which I then bring my own amazing talent to bear on and translate their ideas into something real."
"You'll have to introduce me," Rachel said, nodding to herself. The person who'd sketched those gowns was obviously very talented. She already knew which one would look best on Quinn.
"She prefers to be a silent collaborator," Kurt said. "but I'll see what I can do."
"Well, whomever she is, she deserves thanks and recognition," Rachel told him firmly. Talent like this needed to be nurtured, she decided. "So which one is for me?" she asked casually.
"This one," he said, reopening the binder and pointing at the figure with an empire waist, bare shoulders and a slit up the side.
"Quinn will look amazing in that gown," Rachel said. "I'll wear the other one." She pointed at the other gown.
"No," Kurt said firmly. "This one was specifically designed for you. It, and I quote, 'shows off your wonderfully long legs and frames your face above the perfection of your shoulders and perfectly proportioned breasts' unquote."
Raising an eyebrow in almost perfect imitation of a certain former Cheerio, Rachel looked at her uncomfortable looking best friend in astonishment. "Who said that?"
Shaking his head, Kurt pointed at the sketches.
"I'm flattered someone thinks so," Rachel said, suppressing a blush, "though you probably shouldn't repeat that in Quinn's presence. She can be a bit possessive," she added proudly.
"Who's the future Broadway star?" Kurt asked. "Who should be the focus of attention?"
"Me, of course," Rachel said. "But Quinn's the eye candy. All eyes should be admiring her on my arm."
"I can't believe you said that!" Kurt said, closing the binder and stuffing it back into his bag. "I'm not her biggest fan, in fact there are times she still scares me, but even I know better than to call her that. What would your fathers say!"
"It's true. She'd make me look plain and ordinary. You know it. And Quinn knows it. Which is why she probably won't go as my plus one," Rachel said, frowning into her cup. "She won't want to upstage me."
"She'll go," Kurt said.
"How do you know?" Rachel asked.
"I have my ways," he said, smugly. "I bet she'll say yes."
"No blackmailing my girlfriend!" Rachel said, standing up. "If she doesn't want to go, she doesn't have to."
"We'll see," he said, getting to his feet.
"Kurt?" Rachel asked, as they started walking. "When was the last time you heard from Finn?"
"He called me when he got to Vancouver," Kurt said. "Why?"
"Has he told you anything about his summer plans?"
"Finn doesn't make plans," Kurt said. "You know that."
"Well, he's making them now," Rachel told him. "He's coming here this summer!"
"Here here?" Kurt asked, stopping in the middle of the sidewalk, and staring at her.
"Yes!" Rachel said, hoping she sounded calmer than she felt. "And he can't stay with us!"
"Why would he stay with you?" Kurt asked.
"This is Finn we're talking about," Rachel said. Kurt could be self centered at times, worse than herself, but he couldn't possibly have forgotten how oblivious his stepbrother could be to the lives of others, she thought.
"Right. Finn. I'll make sure he stays with me." He shook his head and started walking, Rachel hurrying to keep up. "Does he know about you and Miss Fabray?"
"I didn't tell him. Did you?" Rachel asked.
"I didn't think Quinn would appreciate me interfering in her business," Kurt said, giving her a sideways look.
"So he doesn't know," Rachel mumbled, taking note of his expression. He'd obviously had a recent encounter with the glory that was 'Take No Prisoners Quinn' that Quinn hadn't told her about. "Would anyone else tell him?"
"No one has mentioned anything to me," Kurt said. "And I've been my usual discrete self."
"You, the fastest gossip in the city?" Rachel said, giggling. "When Sam got caught in Mercedes' dressing room last month, we all heard about it from you before it hit the blogs," Rachel said.
"That was different," Kurt said.
"That was amusing and wasn't a huge surprise," he said. "I'm not my brother. I'm not going to out my two favorite baby lesbians without their permission."
"That's sweet of you," she said, hugging him. "Come on, I need more coffee if we're going to keep gossiping." Grabbing his free hand, Rachel started walking faster.