Title: Remember Those Walls We Built?
Pairing(s): Brittana romance, Troubletones friendship, Brittcedes friendship, mentions of Samcedes romance
Word Count: ~1,100
Summary: "Even though Mercedes and Brittany have been in glee club together going on three years now, they’ve never really had a one-on-one conversation, and Mercedes can’t help but think that she knows why: it’s because she can never understand a damn word that comes out of Brittany Pierce’s mouth." Set between 3x04 and 3x06. Mercedes’ POV.
Author’s Note: Written for Brittana Week: Day Two.
Santana thinks that Mercedes can’t see her—otherwise she wouldn’t be sitting halfway in Brittany’s lap right now, Mercedes is sure.
Mercedes can see Santana, though, because the reflection on the sliding glass door to the side of them plainly shows everyone present in the room.
Sugar sprawls out on the floor in her fuzzy pink teddy, already conked out after eating way too many gummy worms and Oreos earlier in the night; Kortney lounges with her sleeping bag pulled over her head, exhausted from a long day of back to back Cheerios and Troubletones practices; Danielle is dead to the world with her headphones on, blocking out everything but her own iTunes “Going 2 Sleep” playlist; Beyoncé shines on the big screen, belting out hits from her I Am… Sasha Fierce concert DVD; Mercedes leans up against a pillow, legs nestled under an afghan; Brittany and Santana cuddle on the sofa just behind her, Santana’s arms wrapped around Brittany’s waist and her head on Brittany’s shoulder, while Brittany absentmindedly strokes through the tresses of Santana’s hair.
Mercedes doesn’t mean to look at the reflection, really; it just catches her attention whenever she glances away from the television screen.
And especially when she starts to hear the soft smacking sounds of kisses coming from somewhere directly at her back.
Mercedes straightens where she sits and forces herself not to look at the door. After all, she knows how hard it is to sneak in romantic moments in a secret relationship; she and Sam had to hide their every wink and touch last year while they were in New York, right after they started dating. She knows that Santana and Brittany have something going on on the DL and she isn’t about to mess with it. She keeps her eyes trained to the television screen.
If they want to kiss during a Troubletones team sleepover, that’s their own damn business.
But then Mercedes hears a loud kiss and there’s only so much willpower in the world, right?
She glances at the reflection in the door, bright against the blackness of Sugar’s sprawling backyard. The reflection is clear and pristine, with hard lines and no glare—the perfect mirror image of what’s happening in the room. Only in looking at it head on does Mercedes realizes she had everything wrong.
Santana and Brittany aren’t making out on the couch.
Actually, Santana is asleep and Brittany is kissing her hair, peppering little butterfly pecks to the top of her head, almost like she can’t help but do it.
"Mercedes?" Brittany’s reflection whispers, looking away from Santana.
Somehow it hadn’t occurred to Mercedes that if she could see Santana and Brittany, they could see her, too. She suddenly feels guilty for intruding on something that’s none of her business. She opens her mouth to apologize, but Brittany cuts her off.
"Can you pass me that blanket next to Sugar?" Brittany whispers. "It’s cold and I think that this one’s toes are gonna freeze," she says, indicating Santana.
Brittany’s request takes Mercedes aback, but Mercedes quickly recovers.
"Oh, sure," she says, collecting the blanket and then passing it over her shoulder into Brittany’s waiting hand. She doesn’t dare look directly at what’s happening behind her on the sofa because she doesn’t want to weird Brittany out or anything.
"Thank you," Brittany says quietly, and Mercedes watches her arrange the blanket carefully over Santana’s sleeping body in the likeness on the door. Brittany tucks the blanket over Santana’s shoulders, fitting it in close around Santana like a hug and then covering up Santana’s feet. After a moment, Brittany says, "Santana didn’t mean to disrespect Beyoncé by falling asleep or anything. She can’t help it. She’s just so, so tired all the time, and Our Lady Gaga of Peace says that Santana was born that way anyway. I mean, Santana likes the idea of Beyoncé. And she would probably go to Beyoncé’s concerts if she really felt welcome there, so."
Even though Mercedes and Brittany have been in glee club together going on three years now, they’ve never really had a one-on-one conversation, and Mercedes can’t help but think that she knows why: it’s because she can never understand a damn word that comes out of Brittany Pierce’s mouth.
She tries not to pull an epic What the actual fuck? face because she doesn’t want Brittany to see her doing it in the door.
Instead, she just says, “Um, that’s okay, Brittany. It’s only a movie.” She hopes that her answer will be good enough for Brittany.
Brittany smiles. “You’re a totally chill Beyoncé fan,” she says, snuggling in closer to Santana.
Mercedes wants to ask what Brittany means, but even if she were to ask, she figures that she wouldn’t understand Brittany’s answer anyway. She shakes her head and tries to go back to watching the DVD; Beyoncé is singing “Halo” and killing it.
For a second, Mercedes remembers yellow sundresses and more adrenaline than she knew what to do with and two girls smiling at each other like fools through every verse and chorus, their hair whipping around their faces.
Suddenly, it occurs to Mercedes that for as bad as it was for her and Sam to have to sneak in all their romantic moments at the end of the school year last year when they were secretly dating, Santana and Brittany have had it so much worse.
Three years is a really long time.
A whole lifetime is even longer.
Even though “Halo” is a happy song, it puts a pain into Mercedes’ chest. For a long while, she doesn’t look at anything—not the television screen and not the door. She remembers last spring and the coffee shop, last summer and the Tilt-A-Whirl, this year and Jacob ben Israel prying into her business like he had the right. She thinks of Santana in the locker bay, saying that she could never just leave Brittany behind her.
"Brittany," Mercedes says suddenly, turning fully around to face the sofa.
It surprises Mercedes when Brittany doesn’t flinch at all at the motion—when Brittany doesn’t do anything to cover up the fact that she and Santana are cuddling together, sitting in the same close, comfortable way that Mercedes’ own parents, who have been married for thirty plus years, sit when they watch movies in the den on Friday nights. Brittany remains in her place, stroking Santana’s hair. She stares at Mercedes, waiting for her to say something.
"You two are really cute together," Mercedes manages after a moment.
Brittany nods and kisses Santana’s hair again. “Yeah,” she says so softly that Mercedes almost doesn’t hear it. “We really are.”
For the first time since they’ve known each other, Mercedes thinks she understands exactly what Brittany means.
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