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to be or not to be (engaged)

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Rachel Berry fidgeted with the hem of her dress nervously. She felt uneasy having no one to talk to even though she had especially requested for her friends to leave the apartment for an hour or two. Rachel had an important guest coming over.

I'm gonna go into cardiac arrest if she doesn't show up soon. I haven't been this nervous since I was cast in Funny Girl, Rachel thought, fanning her face with her hands.

Just then there was a knock on the door. Rachel checked herself from the mirror and flicked a few strands of hair away from her face, "Coming!"

Rachel opened the door and greeted the smiling Judy Fabray warmly, "Mrs. Fabray, I'm so glad you could make it!"

"Rachel! I have told you to call me Judy now," Judy smiled as she let Rachel take her coat.

"Right - sorry - Judy. It's so good to see you," Rachel placed Judy's coat neatly on a nearby chair and scurried off into the kitchen, "Would you like some coffee? Tea?"

"Coffee is fine, thank you Rachel."

In a few minutes time the coffee was on the way. Rachel guided Judy to their living room area and took a seat opposite her.

Quinn had gotten all her features from her mother; it was almost uncanny. Rachel now knew where Quinn's infamously beautiful smile came from. There was a sense of pride and bravery in both of the Fabray ladies. It was clear that most of the things they had gone through they had experienced together.

"So, how's life in New York, my dear?" Judy asked.

"It's nice. Well, it took me some getting used to but I feel like this is my home now. I'm performing on Broadway and that's always been my dream and main goal. Many of my friends are living here too and making their own dreams come true. You might remember some of them. Artie, Kurt, Blaine, Brittany, Santana... they're all here and I'm so glad I have them close to me. But I didn't invite you over to talk about myself or them, Mrs - uh, Judy."

Judy frowned and leaned forward a little bit, "Is everything okay?"

Rachel swallowed quietly, "Yes, I - I think so. Let me get that coffee for you."

She fetched the coffee pot and poured Judy a warm cup. Then she finally dared to look her in the eye properly.

"I have something I would like to discuss with you. It's about Quinn."

The expression on Judy's face changed. She placed down the coffee cup before even sipping once and multiple different feelings and questions arose to the surface.

"What about her? What about my Quinnie? Is she alright? Has she adapted to New York well?" she asked quickly. Rachel smiled softly.

"Don't worry, your daughter is fine. Ever since Quinn and I moved in together she's fit in to the New York lifestyle perfectly. What I want to talk to you about is something hopefully positive so you shouldn't be too concerned."

Judy remained silent, letting Rachel know that she wanted to hear more. The younger brunette took a deep breath, knowing that she would have to choose her next words carefully.

"Considering that Quinn has made it clear that she's uncomfortable in her father's presence and I can't be in the same room with him for five minutes without wanting to claw his face off, you were the only person I could turn to. The obvious choice, actually. You know that I'm loyal to your daughter and I love her. That's why you're here today, Judy, because I would like to ask you for your blessing. I want to ask Quinn to marry me."

A dangerous silence fell in the room. Rachel was terrified.

"Ms. Berry..."

It was serious whenever Rachel got addressed by her last name. She closed her eyes momentarily and then sipped her coffee, trying to avoid a nervous breakdown.

"My Quinn has been through a lot over these past years. She got pregnant in high school with Mr. Puckerman. She had the rebellious phase - you remember the pink hair, don't you? Ms. Zizes exposed her past as Lucy. She got into a car accident and had to learn to walk again. Glee club saved her in every way possible."

"Judy, I'm sorry, I just — "

Judy lifts her hand to stop Rachel from speaking, "I'm not finished. Do not think I'm angry at you because I'm really not. You have nothing to apologize for. You're a lovely girl, Rachel, and I'm well aware that if I were to not give you my blessing you would go and propose to my daughter anyway. Eventually you'd marry her too, with or without my acceptance, correct?"

Rachel still felt nervous and tingly but a feeling of confidence overcame her, "Correct. I love Quinn and even though your blessing would mean the world to me it would not stop me from making her my wife."

Judy took Rachel's hand. The brunette noticed that she was shaking. Tears glistened in Judy's eyes but she would not let them fall. God, she and Quinn were so alike.

"Can I trust you to make Quinn happy and keep her safe? If her past were any different I would've given you my blessing straight away. I'm sorry for being this complicated - "

"No, don't apologize. I completely understand why you're acting this way. You're a mother and a mother never stops wanting to protect her child. But you must understand, I would never hurt Quinn. She's the prettiest girl I've ever met but she's also so much more than that."

Another deafening moment of silence.

"It seems you have my daughter's best interests at heart — not that I ever doubted that, of course. You'll make a fantastic daughter-in-law, Rachel."

Rachel's eyes widened in an instant. She lifted her hands to her mouth.

"I — Judy — does that mean — "

"I'm giving you my blessing."

"Oh, thank you! Thank you so much Judy!" Rachel flung herself into Judy's arms and hugged her tightly. The older Fabray brushed her hand through Rachel's long hair. Her heart was beating and an inexplicable happiness was quickly filling her chest. Her daughter deserved the world and Rachel would keep giving it to her like she already had done for the past years.

"Now I need to buy a ring! Oh my goodness, I need to call Kurt, this is his area of expertise - maybe Santana, too! She and Brittany will know what Quinn likes, they're practically sisters. I can't believe this is happening - "

"Calm down, sweetie. Everything will be alright. I can pay for the ring." Judy cut off the rambling Rachel.

"What? No no no, I couldn't ask that of you, it's way too much." she frowned and looked up at Judy with concerned, guilty eyes.

"Nonsense, it'll be a pleasure. You can have a conversation with Santana and Brittany Lopez about my daughter's taste in rings. I insist that you let me cover the bill."

Rachel smiled at the mention of Brittany's new last name. It had been years since she and Santana had gotten married and they were a perfect match. Whenever they were in a room together they illuminated the space in a way not many people could. Now it would finally be her turn to experience the same. She squeezed Judy's hand affectionally.

"Okay, that would be nice. Thank you. I appreciate it so much."

"We're family, Rachel. We look out for each other. And, occasionally, help each other buy expensive jewelry." Judy and her future daughter-in-law laughed together.

"Yeah... we're that kind of family, aren't we?"

Judy puts a hand on Rachel's cheek, "We are. And I wouldn't have it any other way."