AU. It’s almost the beginning of Rachel Berry’s senior year at William McKinley High School, and come hell or high water, she’s determined to make it better than the slushy-filled, insult-bogged years prior. The Glee club now has a few titles under their belt and people aren’t so adamant on making the members’ lives awful. In fact, there’s almost a quiet understanding that show choir might actually be sort of cool, but it’s not quite whole-heartedly embraced yet. Rachel feels on top of the world and entirely in control of the year to come until a certain blonde moves in down the street from her, tipping her plans off their perfect axis.
Lucy Quinn, the only child of Russell and Judy Fabray, has spent her entire life growing up in Washington, DC. She’s about to finish her junior year of high school, plans already being made with her boyfriend and friends of how they’re going to waste away the summer, when her parents inform her that Russell’s parents have been killed in a car accident. The family attends the funeral in Lima, where Russell grew up and where her grandfather had his family physician practice, and Quinn returns to DC with Judy to finish her junior year while Russell remains in Lima to settle his parents’ affairs.
Quinn arrives home from school one day to piles of cardboard boxes – packing and moving boxes – stacked and lining the walls of their townhome’s living room. Confused, Quinn finds her parents sitting at the kitchen table going over paperwork and Russell, newly arrived home, along with Judy break the news. There had always been an understanding that once Quinn graduated and left for college, The Fabrays would relocate back to Ohio and Russell, a physician specializing in pediatrics, would take over his father’s practice. Unfortunately with the untimely death of Russell Sr., the move is happening now. The last week of school is spent saying goodbye to the only friends and home Quinn’s known for the past seventeen years (she turns 18 during the summer once they’re living in Ohio) and packing up her room.
There’s nothing about Lima Quinn likes and she spends the summer either brooding in her room, out in the backyard practicing her soccer skills, or training and conditioning for the upcoming fall season. She’s yet to make any friends, not that she really wants to since her goals are simple: graduate and move away, but there’s one persistent neighbor, a tiny brunette who insists on dropping off weekly baked goods, that worms her way into Quinn’s life.
Important Events [last updated: 07.20.12]
There’s a certain air of mystery about Quinn Fabray, the girl Rachel had hardly seen heads or tails of since she moved in down the street over the summer. When the block has their annual barbecues and get-togethers, she’s there—even if she doesn’t engage in any conversation at all, she’s there—to get a plate of food and then retreat back to her house, not willing to stick around for socializing. That in itself is odd to Rachel because she prides herself on being quite the crowd pleaser at these events, able to talk to anyone in attendance about anything and enjoying keeping in touch with all of her block-mates.
What’s even more unbelievable is that when Rachel makes her near weekly rounds of dropping off her miscellaneous, vegan baked goods to the Fabray household, she never catches Quinn at the door.
Her first real run-in with the elusive girl occurs on the internet, where they argue over the pros and cons of a vegan diet and Quinn reveals her distaste for the majority of the goodies that wind up in her house by Rachel’s hand. It’s a rocky start at best, and Rachel is caught up in Quinn’s ability to go from interested to disinterested in one quick swoop, which is why Rachel is practically floored when she manages to talk Quinn into sitting in on a class period of Glee with the hopes of hooking her into joining.
The New Directions put on a rather impressive impromptu performance of ABBA’s “Take a Chance On Me”for Quinn, sitting in the back of the room and looking, well, unimpressed. When asked, she offers that the performance was merely “okay,” but concedes later that she’ll swap out her boring ninth period elective for show choir.
From there, Quinn and Rachel begin to talk more, Rachel agreeing to come watch the next home soccer match of Quinn’s when the invitation is extended, but not before Quinn finds herself at the start of a grudge. When the formal captain of the McKinley Titans’ Varsity Girls Soccer team, Aubrey Anderson, starts to get a little touchy over her title – Quinn’s more of a leader on the pitch than Aubrey will ever be – she slide tackles Quinn during practice, which causes Quinn to tweak her knee and aggravate an older injury of her calf. Quinn being Quinn, however, pushes through the injury with visits to the trainer.
While all of the soccer drama is going down, Rachel is spending her afternoons auditioning for the Spring musical at McKinley, the title of which she’s been wheedling and bribing out of the choir director since school began. She winds up landing the starring role of Janet Van de Graaff in The Drowsy Chaperone, and thus she’s added another thing to her busy schedule that now—someway, somehow—includes Quinn.
Appalled by Rachel’s protests that she’s not in any way athletic beyond dancing and her elliptical, Quinn offers to take her out for a run and bring her to the park to watch the youth league play a game because Quinn assists in her spare time. The day goes surprisingly well, and the girls are getting along, which prompts Quinn to invite a very concerned-about-her-nose Rachel over for some soccer fundamentals.
Apparently Rachel Berry is stronger than even she thought, managing to kick a straight shot from the grass of the Fabrays’ back yard right into Quinn’s face. She proceeds to panic while Quinn rolls on the ground and laughs hysterically, trying to get Rachel to realize that she’s absolutely fine, save for the black eye she has upon waking up on the day of the big home game that Rachel is attending with Dr. and Mrs. Fabray, as she calls them.
With a little luck from a certain gold star sticker and sporting her black eye, Quinn scores the game-winning goal for the Titans—though she’s modest about her talent—and Rachel has a fantastic evening trying to understand what’s going on as commentated by Russell as there’s a huge chat fest on the bleachers between the three. There’s talk of a family dinner with the Berrys and Fabrays under one roof.
Both girls are over the moon after the game until Quinn sits down to dinner with her parents, bombarded with questions about things Rachel had brought up in discussion, things like Glee club, which Quinn had yet to tell her parents about. Quinn is furious at Rachel for unknowingly bringing up the topic that she wanted to handle on her own terms, and Rachel spends the following day trying to figure out why Quinn was so absent and cold, skipping Glee and offering nothing but snarky comments.
Quinn essentially decides that she’s cutting Rachel out of her life, ditching Glee with a few words to Mr. Schue to practice on the soccer pitch despite the lingering effects of her injury. They begin to avoid each other, though Rachel isn’t so good at that, texting Quinn to wish her luck at games.
A frustrated Quinn, however, has set herself on a certain revenge and, in her anger, decides to act on it in warm-ups. She kicks a soccer ball directly into the back of Aubrey Anderson’s “stupid” head as payback, a choice that effectively concusses Aubrey and gets Quinn suspended from the team for a week. With no idea how to tell her parents that she won’t be attending the conference tourney that weekend, she waits until she’s forced to say it.
After a heart-to-heart with Russell, during which a little more of Quinn’s history is revealed, it’s decided that Quinn will attend the tournament as a spectator.
Meanwhile, however, Rachel has plans of her own and isn’t about to accept the silent treatment from Quinn. The morning of the tournament, Rachel tromps down the street with a batch of blueberry muffins, a blanket, and a stubborn mindset, seating herself on the hood of Quinn’s car. She’s bound and determined to attend the tourney with Quinn and meets a surprisingly low amount of resistance when a tired Quinn leaves the house.
The drive to Toledo is pleasant, and Rachel can rest easy learning that her baking goods aren’t simply “okay,” but Quinn fights Russ for them frequently. Even better is getting the info that Quinn considers them friends despite having promised herself not to get attached to anything in Ohio.
Once at the tourney, they find Aubrey on the field. She’s supposed to be out for three weeks due to a concussion, but apparently that was either a lie or a misdiagnosis. Quinn’s furious and Rachel catches on, which leads to a covert, delinquent operation that involves several rolls of toilet paper, the ND boys, and Rachel on lookout and Quinn orchestrating the entire deal.
Payback is almost as big of a bitch as Aubrey.