groffles (groffles on tumblr) prompted: "We used to be best friends" : "We can't do this anymore" : "You're not the person I thought you were"
Enjoy! I didn't use the exact wording of the first phrase or third phrase, but rather the meaning behind them. Warnings for my attempts at songwriting. Also, Kurt does make an appearance but it's not huge because this is mostly an Anderbros fic. And he's not supposed to be Prince Hans, but maybe one of that jerk's brothers.
"Cooper?" Blaine knocked on the door that hadn't opened since he was a small child. But this time he needed to see it open more than anything. His older brother was really all he had left now that the king and queen were dead. Blaine closed his eyes, shaking his head and calling out again. His voice was louder but still strained in his attempt to hold back tears. "Do you want to build a snowman?" he sang desperately, trying his old song once more. It had aged and changed with his heart and mind, but it held the same meaning at the end of it all. He needed his brother. "I need you now, I really do. We can talk and play the whole day through, the way we used to do. Are you listening to me?" He let out a shaky breath as a single tear escaped and he rested both his palms against the chilled door. It was always cold, a perfect reflection of how he felt every time Cooper didn't answer. "Please, just do this once for me. That's all I ask. I need you to open the door." He sniffled, sinking to his knees and pressing his cheek to the door. "Do you want to build a snowman? It doesn't have to be a snowman."
He heard footsteps coming nearer to the door and he gasped, heart racing in anticipation as he stared at the doorknob. Then something nudged his foot and he looked down to see an envelope. He frowned and picked it up, heart sinking; it was the letter he'd written for Cooper, returned unopened.
He reluctantly picked himself off the floor, wiping his eyes. "Okay, bye," he sang as his voice cracked.
He stared at the door for a few more seconds before turning around and going back to his room with his head bowed. It wasn't as if he'd expected this time to be any different. But that didn't mean it didn't hurt all the same.
Two years later and Coronation Day was just around the corner. Cooper was turning twenty-one in two days and he would be crowned king the next day. Blaine, however, was turning eighteen right now and the prince was miserable.
The castle staff had prepared him a beautiful cake and a lavish meal, but he couldn't bear to sit at the enormous table all by himself. He couldn't even bring himself to knock on Cooper's door. It had been ten years of silence and he couldn't take another rejection. As he was dashing down the hallway towards the breakfast hall that morning, he almost stopped to try, but he quickly tore his eyes away from the door and continued running.
By the end of the day, he found himself sitting outside Cooper's door with a plate, a slice of cake, and a flickering candle. He wasn't sure why he was there, but he was tired of being alone on the one day of the year that he shouldn't be and he needed to feel like someone was there.
"Cooper?" he called out. No response. He sighed, staring down at his candle and starting to sing.
"We don't have to build a snowman. I just want to know you're there." He paused, his forehead creasing as he thought of the next lyrics. "It's my birthday and I'm all alone. There's no one home. But you don't even care." He closed his eyes, wrapping his arms around his middle and continuing. "I know you must be lonely. You don't have to be. Why can't you let me in?" Another pause as he steadied his breaths, tears falling onto his cake platter. "Maybe I'll go build a snowman. You're never gonna build a snowman."
"I'm sorry, Blaine," Cooper whispered, not loud enough for Blaine to hear even though he was sitting against the door. "I'm so sorry."
"Happy birthday to me," Blaine murmured, looking at the door hopefully and sighing after another minute of silence. He shook his head and turned his gaze to the candle. He blew it out, using yet another wish to hope for something that would never happen.
Coronation day went by in a rush but it was easily the best day of Blaine's life.
"For the first time in forever," he sang delightedly, "I'm getting what I'm dreaming of. A chance to change my lonely world. A chance to find true love." He ran through the crowds with his hands in the air and a grin across his face. "And I know it all ends tomorrow, so it has to be today! 'Cause for the first time in forever. For the first time in forever. For the first time in forever… Nothing's in my way—oof!"
"Oh, excuse me, sir, I'm so sorry for that—Prince Blaine!"
Blaine looked up just in time to see an unfamiliar man hopping off his horse, looking apologetic and concerned. "Your Majesty, I'm so sorry—I wasn't looking, I just—"
"It's okay," Blaine assured him quickly, taking the man's offered hand and standing up. He brushed himself off and held out his hand properly in greeting. "It's nice to meet you, however unconventional the circumstances…" he trailed off as he looked up and got a better look at the man's face.
The man shook his head and smiled apologetically. "I apologize for my clumsiness, my prince…"
Blaine choked on a laugh, shaking his head. "No, no, it's fine. You're not clumsy. I'm clumsy. You're gorgeous." He yelped as he realized what he'd said, turning red. "Did I just say that out loud?"
The gorgeous man laughed—that laugh was the most beautiful sound Blaine had ever heard—and nodded. "I'm afraid so. But I'll accept the compliment, however… unconventional your courting methods may be."
Blaine laughed, breathless and relieved, as he grinned at the man. Courting. Was that what they were doing right now? He didn't even know this man's name. "Speaking of unconventional courting methods, may I ask your name now that I've already called you gorgeous so inappropriately early?"
The man laughed and bowed a little. "Prince Kurt, of the Southern Isles. And I know you must be Prince Blaine of Arendelle. If it helps even things out at all, I'd like to say that tales of your charm and your beauty can hardly do you justice."
Blaine flushed deeply, biting his lip shyly under Kurt's gaze. "Oh… Um, thank you. I, uh, have to go now…" He stumbled a few feet backwards and tripped over the edge of a small canoe, yelping as he fell on his butt. Kurt, in his attempts to catch Blaine before he fell, stumbled and landed in the boat as well, right over Blaine. "I… I'm sorry about that," Blaine said, flustered. "This is awkward. Not that you're awkward! It's just that I'm—"
"Awkward?" Kurt supplied with a smile that was far from unkind. It was almost warm; one might even call it fond. "It's okay, I'll just—"
He tried to stand and fell back down with a yelp as the boat started to tip off the dock. Luckily, Kurt's horse caught it with a hoof in the hull. Kurt chuckled nervously, pushing himself up and off of Blaine.
Blaine smiled as Kurt offered his hand again, taking it and standing up as well. He stepped out of the boat and stared at Kurt for a few more moments before smiling shyly and waving. "I really do need to go. The, um, coronation and all."
"Right," Kurt said with his previous kind smile still in place. "Right, of course. I hope to see you at the ball afterwards. Where will I find you?"
Blaine grinned. He couldn't help it. "You'll find me, don't worry. Farewell, Prince Kurt. It was wonderful to meet you."
"Likewise," Kurt returned as Blaine retreated reluctantly. As if noticing Kurt's faraway, longing look, Pavaratti—he's the horse—lifted his hoof not-so-discreetly. Kurt yelped as the boat tipped off the dock and dunked him in the cove. He swam to the surface with a gasp for air and shot his horse a glare. Pavaratti nickered and Kurt couldn't help but laugh. He loved that silly horse.
He turned to watch Blaine leave until he couldn't see him anymore, smiling soft and intrigued. Perhaps it was a good thing his brother had convinced him to attend the coronation in his place. He had a feeling things would turn out for the best.
"You look very handsome."
Blaine startled, looking to his left to see the man who was practically a stranger to him. Cooper wasn't looking at him but he stared out at the dancing crowd from his place at the head of the room, smiling almost peacefully. "A-Are you talking to me?" Blaine squeaked.
Cooper turned to look at him at last and his smile turned sad but his eyes were guarded. "You look handsome. And you look happy. I'm glad."
Blaine wasn't sure what to say, just staring slightly open-mouthed at his older brother. Then he caught a whiff of… something. And oh, that was divine. "What is that amazing smell?" He searched the room, his eyes eventually settling on Cooper again as the brothers came to the same delighted conclusion.
"Chocolate," they said in unison before starting to laugh quietly between the two of them. Blaine couldn't help but smile. Maybe, despite what they'd been through in the past decade, he hadn't lost his brother after all.
"I wish things could be like this all the time," Blaine admitted, hoping with every fiber of his being that Cooper admitted to feeling the same way.
"Me, too," he said and Blaine's heart leaped. However, it sank even further when Cooper's face became guarded and cold once more. "But it can't."
"Why not?" Blaine asked, unable to stop the hurt from leaking into his voice. "We can't keep doing this, Cooper. You're my brother. Can't you just… be there for me?"
Cooper sighed, not looking at him. He folded his hands neatly in front of him and straightened his posture, stoning his features. "I just can't, Blaine. It's the truth and it's time you accepted that."
"I have accepted that—"
"Obviously you haven't," Cooper snapped, cold and harsh. Blaine flinched, looking away. Maybe he was wrong. Cooper would never be the same.
Before anyone could see his heartbreak clearly on display, Blaine covered his mouth with a fist and pushed his way through the crowd, muttering apologies all the way. He nearly bumped into a servant carrying an appetizer tray and gasped as he stumbled to avoid spilling its contents. "I'm so sorry, I—ah!" He tripped over his own toes and fell—
—right into the arms of Prince Kurt. He blushed as Kurt dipped him, grinning down at the dark-haired prince. "Oh," Blaine said dumbly, hoping his eyes didn't give away that he'd been on the verge of tears. "Hi."
"Hello again," Kurt said, bringing Blaine back to his feet and steadying him. "Forgive me if I'm being too blunt, but may I have this dance?"
"Yes," Blaine answered too quickly and Kurt laughed, not unkindly. "I mean… I-I'd like that."
"Good." Kurt then began to lead them in a dance that Blaine didn't know, but somehow they moved gracefully and easily together as if they'd been dancing with each other their whole lives. "You're very light on your feet."
"I thought we decided I was clumsy," Blaine countered, feeling light and happy and freer than he'd ever been.
"That's right," Kurt grinned. "And I'm gorgeous."
"Now you've got it," Blaine teased, earning a soft laugh from his dance partner. "You have a lovely laugh."
Now it was Kurt's turn to blush as Blaine had earlier that morning. "You have dazzling eyes that light up when you smile," he replied. "Why don't you smile more?"
"I do when I'm with you, apparently," Blaine assured him. "This night was looking to be painfully reminiscent of my past, but with you I feel happy."
Kurt's smile turned soft. "I'm glad. I get the feeling you deserve to be happy."
They didn't talk for a few minutes after that, but when the song ended Blaine took Kurt's hand and asked, "Do you want to go outside? Get some fresh air?"
Kurt nodded, squeezing his hand. "I'd love to."
They spent at least an hour just walking through the palace gardens, just talking and laughing about everything and anything at all. Eventually they made it to one of the balconies, leaning on the railing with Kurt's arm wrapped around Blaine's torso. "It's a beautiful night," Blaine said.
"I had a really wonderful time getting to know you, Blaine," Kurt admitted. "I hope this won't be our last night together."
"I'll make sure it isn't," Blaine vowed, leaning his head on Kurt's shoulder. "I never want to stop getting to know you. I want to spend all my nights making you smile because you have a beautiful smile." He paused. "I'm sorry if that scares you."
"It doesn't," Kurt promised. "The future is… hopeful, I think. Anything can happen. And if I get to venture through it all with you by my side, I'll be happy forever."
"Me, too," Blaine whispered with a content smile. After a few minutes of comfortable silence, he asked, "Are you lonely?"
Kurt shrugged a little. "Sometimes. That may be hard to believe given that I have twelve brothers—"
Kurt laughed. "Yes, twelve. But they're not really my family, even if they're related to me. They don't understand me and they're cruel simply because I can never love a princess like the rest of them. It can get lonely. Mother died years ago and father stays busy, always leaving to make business deals with the other kingdoms. I'm on my own, really."
"I know what it's like. To be lonely, I mean," Blaine said softly. "The king has always been… distant. Our parents died a few years ago and he didn't even attend the funeral. We used to everything together but now… now I don't understand. I don't know what I did to make him shut me out." He turned his head into Kurt's neck and grabbed a fistful of his soft shirt.
"Hey," Kurt said softly, lifting Blaine's chin with a gently finger. "I would never shut you out, Blaine."
Blaine couldn't help but offer a shaky smile. He could get used to someone being there.
"Wait, wait, what?" Cooper asked, frowning. "I'm confused."
Blaine wasn't deterred in the slightest, grinning as he held Kurt's hand tightly. "Cooper, didn't you hear me? We want to be married. As soon as possible. Of course, we need to figure out the details, but we'll obviously have the ceremony here and—"
"Blaine," Cooper interrupted sharply and Blaine deflated, his face falling. "You can't marry a man you just met."
"Oh, but you can ignore your own brother and leave him all alone?" Blaine countered, voice rising with hurt. "Cooper! I can't live like this! Don't you understand how trapped I feel?"
"Then leave," Cooper snapped. They both recoiled at the harsh words. Blaine looked close to tears and Cooper looked shocked at his own words.
Cooper looked around in a panic before fleeing quickly towards the main doors. Blaine ran after him, latching onto his brother's hand and refusing to let go. He refused to lose him a second time. "Cooper, stop. What are you so afraid of?!" He pulled and Cooper's glove was in his hand, cold and stiff.
"Blaine, give me back my glove," Cooper said in a carefully controlled tone, looking terrified. "Now."
"No," Blaine protested. "No, you can't keep shutting me out over and over again! Tell me why you're so scared and we can fix this together!"
"No, we can't," Cooper snapped, stumbling back and startling Blaine as icy spikes rose from the ground in a semi-circle around the older brother. Cooper looked panicked and Blaine just looked confused and shocked. "I… I'm sorry…" Before Blaine could say anything, Cooper was dashing out the doors with his cape flowing wildly behind him.
"Blaine!" The prince startled as he felt Kurt rush to his side, concerned. "Are you hurt?"
"I'm fine," Blaine assured. "I need to go after him."
"We need to find that monster!" shouted someone in the crowd and Blaine looked over at a man stepping forward, eyes narrowed at the stranger. "He's not who we thought he was! He isn't fit to be king! That monster will destroy the kingdom!"
"He is not a monster. He's my brother."
"He almost killed you!"
"It was an accident. He was scared!" Blaine protested, glaring fiercely at the man. "I'm going after him and you are not to follow me. You'll only make things worse."
With that Blaine took off, ready to find his brother so they could fix this.
However, he didn't know that the guards of Wesselton were already making their way to the front of the castle to ambush the king and put an end to the "witchcraft."
By the time Blaine found Cooper, the terrified king was already fending against the group of guards sent by the duke. Blaine watched, awed and horrified all at once, as Cooper shot ice shards at the guards. Blaine charged into the situation, shouting at them to stop. But as he jumped between the guards and his brother, he was struck; not by a sword but by Cooper's icy powers. He fell to the ground with a pained cry, shivering and pale. "Cooper," he whispered weakly.
"Blaine," Cooper gasped, dropping to his knees beside the prince but not daring to touch him. "Oh, Blaine… What have I done?" he cried.
"Cooper," Blaine repeated, curling in on himself. His hands started to turn white to match the white strand among his dark curls. The rest of his hair started to follow suit. "No…" he whimpered, collapsing weakly and appearing unconscious as his skin continued to freeze over.
"King Cooper," one of the guards said loudly, demanding the king's attention. "You've killed him, Your Majesty. I'm afraid I'm obligated to carry out the punishment for murder."
Cooper stared up at him from his kneeling position, not bothering to argue. He'd killed Blaine. Didn't he deserve this?
An icy storm started to brew quickly around them, almost instantly turning into a full-blown blizzard, hazing the air with thick snow. Cooper continued to stare up at the guard, a single frozen tear falling from his eye as the man brought his sword up above his head.
"No!" came a weak cry. Cooper fell back and only saw what happened next in a blur. The sound of the guard's sword breaking against ice and the startled gasps of the other guards. The whooshing sound of the blizzard around them as an icy figure appeared in front of the king. It took Cooper only two seconds to realize that it was Blaine. It was Blaine and he was dead because of Cooper's carelessness. He'd lost control, and now…
"Oh, Blaine…" He sobbed, throwing his arms around Blaine's frozen neck and crying into his frozen chest. "Blaine…"
He barely registered Kurt's gasp behind him or the crowd solemnly gathering around the brothers. He didn't even notice when a bundle of warmth started to spread from Blaine's heart outward. He didn't notice until Blaine went soft in his grip and started hugging back.
"Blaine…" Cooper sobbed, relief flooding through him as he hugged his brother. "You… You risked your life… to save me?"
Blaine looked at him like he was crazy. "Of course. I love you, Cooper."
Quiet murmuring spread throughout the crowd and Cooper could only pick out a few words. "An act of true love."
"Of course," he whispered, rising to his feet and bringing Blaine with him. He grinned, holding Blaine's shoulders. "Love will thaw. It's just like the trolls said all those years ago…"
"Trolls?" Blaine asked, confused.
Cooper laughed. "It's a long story."
"We've got time," Blaine said, almost hopeful.
"We've got plenty of time," Cooper agreed, grinning brightly at his brother. "But first…"
With a wave of his arms, the blizzard disappeared and the ground started to thaw along with the rest of the village and kingdom.
Blaine grinned as he caught on, watching in awe as Cooper brought the magic into the sky in the shape of a snowflake before making it disappear. He felt Kurt's arms wrap around him and he leaned into the embrace. "Love will thaw," he repeated. He turned to Kurt and took his hands. "Maybe we don't need to be married right away. We'll have a long engagement. I'd like to get to know you more."
"Then we've got time," Kurt said, grinning.
Blaine matched the smile, leaning in for a chaste kiss.
As they pulled apart, Blaine turned and threw his arms around Cooper. "I like having the gates open," he said.
"We are never closing them again," Cooper promised and Blaine lit up like never before. "And I will never shut you out again."
And Blaine knew that all the tales—the ones that said true love was the most powerful magic of all—were true, after all. Not only could love thaw a frozen heart, save a life, and bring a kingdom together in one day; it could also work as a key. Love was an open door.