Title: This is a Handicapable Bus, Not an Ambulance (Or, How Rachel Berry ended up being the only member of New Directions left behind at Regionals)
Pairings/Characters: Quinn+New Directions (Gen)
Word count: 2, 361
Summary: Set during episode 1.22, Journey. My take on the events that might have transpired in the time between Quinn's water breaking and Bohemian Rhapsody.
Disclaimer: This Glee fanfiction is based upon the television show of the same name. All characters and situations other than my own are sole property of Ryan Murphy Productions and 20th Century Fox Television.
A/N: I dedicate *read- BLAME* this fic to pathosical and eyeteemonkey.
“Quinnie, I want you to come home with me. I can turn the guest room into a nursery. Oh, sweetie, say something.”
“My water just broke.”
Her mother blinked, “Your…your what?”
“My water just broke,” she repeated, this time a little louder than but just as calmly as she had the first time.
“Oh, my goodness,” Judy reached up and tenderly tucked a loose strand of her daughter’s hair behind her ear. “Okay, everything is going to be alright, sweetheart.”
Santana, who had been carefully observing the entire exchange from across the dressing room, elbowed Puck in the ribs.
“Ouch,” he scowled at her, “what the hell was that for?”
She pointed to the fluid pooling beneath Quinn’s feet. “Your baby mama is leaking.”
“She’s what?” He asked, looking towards Quinn.
“Ugh,” Santana huffed, “are you so stupid that I have to spell it out for you? Q’s about to drop that kid of yours backstage. Although its head is probably so gigantic that it might take some time.”
“QUINN’S IN LABOR?” Puck yelled in a panic, causing every single member of New Directions to turn their heads and stare at him.
“Yes, she is,” Judy confirmed, guiding Quinn to a seat on the couch. “I’m going to go find Mr. Schuester and let him know what’s going on and then we’ll get you to the hospital.”
“Yay,” Finn cheered, waving his fists in the air a little too enthusiastically, “it’s baby time!”
The girls, minus Santana, crowded anxiously around Quinn while the boys hung back in the corner, looking uncomfortable and generally disgusted by the whole process.
“Your spawn has, like, the worst timing, ever.” Santana muttered to Puck.
“Are you okay?” Tina asked, but before she got an answer Quinn’s squeezed her eyes shut and she whimpered pitifully.
Mercedes immediately took over the situation. “Breathe, Quinn,” she coached gently, her hand lightly rubbing the small of Quinn’s back.
Rachel turned to the boys and matter-of-factly stated, “We need to be timing her contractions.”
“There’s an app for that,” Mike announced, holding up his phone.
“Excellent,” Rachel clapped her hands together, pleased with Mike’s initiative. “Make yourselves useful.”
After a minute or so, Quinn’s face relaxed and she let out a shaky breath. “That one was kind of intense.”
Puck furrowed his brow. “Exactly how many of those have you had?”
She leaned back into the couch, her fingertips tracing lazy circles on the surface of her tight belly. “I don’t know, I lost track a while ago.”
“Hold up,” Artie interjected, “you’re telling us you’ve been in labor all morning and you didn’t say anything? Damn, backstage at Regionals just got a whole lot more interesting.”
Quinn shrugged, “I didn’t want to screw it up for the rest of you guys. Besides, until my water broke, I kind of thought they were Braxton-Hicks contractions. I’ve been having them for weeks now.”
“Shit, Q, you have a person coming out of you.”
“Yeah, I’m pretty sure we all would have understood if you needed to leave early so that you could, you know, go to the hospital and give birth.”
“Nonsense, Mercedes,” Rachel said, “Quinn was just being a good teammate.” She turned to her and patted her shoulder, “I admire your dedication. I wasn’t certain you had it in you.”
“I don’t get what the big deal is,” Brittany murmured to no one in particular. “The stork is just going to drop the baby off later anyways.”
“God, Britt,” Santana groaned. “We’ve been through this before. There’s no such thing as the stork.”
“Then where do babies come from, the cabbage patch?”
Rachel rolled her eyes, “The Sexual Education Program at our school is clearly lacking in content.”
“Baby,” Puck wiggled his eyebrows at her suggestively, “I’ve got all the Sex Ed you need right here.”
Santana snarled at him, “Nice, Puckerman, really nice.”
“Hey,” he held up his hands defensively, “I just call it like I see it.”
Finn wrapped his arms protectively around Rachel’s shoulders. “Dude, can you quit ‘calling it like you see it’ with my girlfriends?”
“Would you all just shut up?” Quinn demanded through gritted teeth. “You’re being extremely obnoxious.”
Rachel sat down on the arm of the couch. “I apologize, Quinn. It’s perfectly natural for a laboring mother to feel anxious and on edge.”
Kurt raised his eyebrow at her, “Who are you, Doctor Quinn Medicine Woman?”
She shook her head, “I like to be well versed in a variety of topics. You never know what a casting agent will be looking for when you go to an open audition.”
Quinn closed her eyes and rubbed the bridge of her nose, “Rachel?”
“That being obnoxious thing we just talked about? You’re doing it again.”
“Right,” Rachel nodded, “I’ll be quiet now.”
Tina twisted her hands anxiously. “Why is it taking your mom so long to find Mr. Schue?”
“Yeah,” Santana agreed, “if they don’t hurry up, you’re going to end up popping out that baby on this couch.”
Artie swallowed hard. “Do you think the judges will deduct points for that?”
“I’m not giving birth on this cooooouuch,” Quinn yelped, curling forward around her belly.
Mercedes turned to Mike, “How long ago was her last one?”
“Three minutes? Your app must be broken!”
“No,” Mike looked at the screen, “it’s only been three minutes.”
“You guys,” Kurt pointed to Quinn, “she’s turning purple.”
“Crap,” Mercedes muttered, crouching down so she was in Quinn’s line of vision. “Breathe, Quinn, in and out. You have to remember to breathe.”
She exhaled and then inhaled again sharply.
“It hurts really, really bad!” She cried once the contraction was over, hot tears spilling out onto her cheeks.
Brittany took Quinn’s hand in her own, rubbing the back of it soothingly with her thumb. “We know it does.”
“Hey, kids, “Mr. Schuester came running into the room, followed by Judy. “I hear we have a little bit of added excitement going on. Is everybody doing okay?”
Santana shook her head. “I hope you brought something to clamp the cord with.”
“Quinnie,” Judy looked at her daughter’s flushed skin and tear-stained cheeks, “are you having contractions already?”
“She’s been having them all morning,” Finn offered. “She just didn’t say anything until now."
Mr. Schuester looked at her, “Is that true, Quinn?”
She huffed a little as she struggled to push herself off of the couch. “Yeah, whatever, I performed while I was in labor. Now can we please just go to the hospital so I can get my epidural?”
Mr. Schuester and Puck both rushed to help pull her up. “Of course, I’m sorry. Your mom is going to drive you and Puck in her car while the rest of us stay here and wait. Is that alright with you?”
Quinn shook her head frantically, “I need Mercedes to come with me.”
Kurt piped up, “If Mercedes is going then so am I.”
Finn frowned, “I want to go. She’s my baby, too. At least, she sort of is…was.”
Brittany stood and walked over to join them. “Yeah, Mr. Schue, we’re a family now. She’s our baby and we all want to be there when she’s born.”
Mr. Schuester looked to Quinn for her approval and she nodded. “At this point, I don’t care if they all want to come in the delivery room with me and watch. I just want to get my damn epidural!”
“Alright,” Mr. Schuester chuckled, “everybody to the bus, then!”
“Shouldn’t we get someone to clean that up?” Artie asked as he wheeled past the puddle of Quinn’s amniotic fluid.
Rachel shook her head and smiled evilly, “Just leave it there. Maybe then Jesse St. James will slip in it and fall and break his talent.”
“Nice,” Artie snickered, holding up his hand to Rachel for a high-five.
The group made it to the parking lot as quickly as they could, pausing twice along their way so that Quinn could work through her contractions.
“Excuse me,” Mr. Schuester said, banging on the door of the bus.
“Mmmmhmmm?” The bus driver replied, opening up the door. “May I help you?”
“We need a ride.”
The bus driver looked uninterested. “Y’all aren’t scheduled to leave until five this afternoon. It’s barely one and I’m still on my lunch break.”
“I realize that but…”
He was interrupted by Quinn, who let out a pained little moan when she felt another contraction starting to build in her back. Desperate for something steady to hold on to, she looped her arms around Finn’s neck and leaned into him because he happened to be the tallest thing standing close to her.
Finn stiffened and looked to Mercedes for help. “What do I do now?”
“Just say encouraging stuff to her and support her ‘til it’s over.”
“Um, okay, uh,” he dropped his head so it was closer to her ear. “Don’t push, Quinn, don’t push. Please don’t push.”
The bus driver raised her eyebrows, “Is that child having a baby? Because this is a handicapable bus, it is not an ambulance.”
Mr. Schuester laughed anxiously. “What? No, of course she’s not having a baby. You know teenagers, they’re just messing around.”
“God,” Quinn groaned, “this baby wants out, NOW.”
The woman eyed him skeptically, “Uh huh.”
“Fine, you’re right, she is having a baby and we need a ride to the hospital so she doesn’t have the baby in this parking lot.”
The woman shook her head, “Nope, no way, call an ambulance for her.”
“Please?” Mr. Schuester begged, “I’ll throw in an extra hundred for you.”
The bus driver considered it. “Alright, you’ve got yourself a deal. But that one,” she pointed to Quinn, who was still leaning against Finn, “that one has to sit on a towel.”
Mr. Schuester took off his suit jacket. “Will this do?”
“Yes, sir, it will.”
“Alrighty then,” he handed his jacket to Puck, “you and Finn help Quinn up the stairs. Tina, you load Artie up onto the wheelchair ramp. The rest of you, please get on quickly and find somewhere to sit.”
“Mr. Schuester,” Rachel interjected, pushing her way past everyone and climbing onto the bus. “There is no need for you to ruin a perfectly good suit jacket. I’ve come prepared for exactly this type of situation.”
“What is that supposed to mean?” Quinn, who had made her way onto the bus and was standing in the aisle behind Rachel, asked.
Rachel pulled a Rubbermaid container out from underneath the seat. “It means,” she explained, “that I packed a towel in my Emergency Preparedness Kit, along with many other vital supplies.”
Quinn read the label on top of the container and scowled. “In case of delivery?”
“Yes,” she opened the lid, pulled out a clean towel, and spread it across the seat for Quinn to sit on. “I knew that there was a high probability you would end up going into labor during our competition this weekend, given the additional physical stress and jolt of adrenaline that performing for a live audience brings. I simply wanted to be prepared.”
Puck smirked, “What else have you got in there, Berry?”
“Um, hand sanitizer, more towels, a baby blanket, a diaper, clean shoelaces in the event that it became necessary for us to tie off the baby’s umbilical cord. Oh, and this,” Rachel held up a tiny pink onesie with the words ‘Future Star’ printed across the front and waved it in Puck’s face. “Isn’t it precious?”
“Ugh,” Quinn cried out in agony.
Rachel’s face fell. “I realize it may not exactly be your style, Quinn, but there’s no need to be rude.”
“No,” she hunched over the seat in front of her and swayed her hips a little, “contraction.”
“Two minutes,” Mike supplied the time without even being asked.
“Dude,” Finn pushed Puck towards Quinn, “go help her.”
Puck hesitated, “She’s kind of scary right now.”
“Idiot,” Santana growled, shoving past the boys in the aisle and taking Quinn’s hand. “Step up and be a man!”
Quinn squeezed Santana’s hand so hard that her fingers turned an angry red and she had to try her best keep from wincing. “What’s taking so long?” Quinn panted, out of breath from her last contraction.
“Sorry,” Artie yelled from outside of the bus, “the wheelchair lift is running kind of slow today.”
“Make.It.Go.Faster.” Quinn ordered.
“We’re working on it, Quinn,” Mr. Schuester assured her. “Why don’t you sit down and try to relax?”
“I can’t sit,” Quinn sobbed. “It feels like the baby’s head is right between my knees!”
The boys all took a step back from her and Mr. Schuster winced. “Let’s get that lift moving, Artie, or we’ll have to leave you here.”
“It’s alright, Mr. Schue,” Rachel said, digging through her box and pulling out a pair of latex gloves.
Quinn glared at her. “What in the hell are those?”
“Gloves, of course, it wouldn’t be sanitary to attempt to deliver a baby without them.”
“NO WAY, RACHEL!” She roared, crossing her legs tightly and pointing towards the door of the bus. “GET OFF!”
“Whoa,” Finn muttered under his breath, “scary Quinn.”
“But,” Rachel started, “I assure you I’m certified in both First Aid and CPR.”
“Are you certified to put in an epidural?”
Rachel furrowed her brow. “Well, no, of course not. I’d have to have gone to Anesthesia school for that, and even if I had, we don’t have the proper supplies.”
Quinn’s face was turning red and the little vein in the middle of her forehead was starting to pulse out. “N-O!”
Rachel turned to Mr. Schuester, “Perhaps it’s in the best interest of my safety if I just wait here.”
He nodded, “I think that’s probably a wise decision.”
“Someone from the team will need to be here when the judges announce their results, anyhow.”
“Good thinking. Thanks for taking one for the team, Rach.” Mr. Schuester said with a wink.
Rachel flipped her hair over her shoulder, picked up the Emergency Preparedness Kit, and strode to the front of the bus.
“Wait,” Quinn yelled after her, “leave the box!”