Author's Note: Once again, not abandoned! I've never stopped thinking of this story, but admittedly encountered a huge case of writer's block. I had written myself somewhat into a corner, as well. When I began this story, I actually liked Mercedes. I no longer do, and thus have been struggling with how to write her here as though I do. Further, the arc I had originally planned for this story will have to be scrapped, as I have no interest in victim!Kurt, which was going to be heavily featured.

This chapter is incredibly short. I won't apologize for it, as it's difficult for me to get back into the swing of writing it. Also, Brittany is not as spacey here, because no one can like that all the time and still function. Hopefully, there will be more soon. Thank you to everyone who's reviewed and stuck with me on this.

Kurt kept his promise and outfitted Brittany with one of his best tiaras, creating a small runway for her to prance down. Where the red carpet had come from, Santana had no idea, nor did she wish to know what else might be lurking in Kurt's closet. She had the distinct impression that space was like a black hole or a really frightening Room of Requirement.

Okay, she did not just make a Harry Potter reference. Fuck. She stomped down her inner geek.

Kurt had declared the Miss America song to be incredibly gauche and a host of other words which left even Santana and Quinn in a stupor, and proceeded to belt out Christina Aguilera's Beautiful in its stead. And belt he did. Mercedes was gaping at the power he was able to pour into his voice, though it was obvious halfway through that he was beginning to feel the strain. Still, it was apparent that despite his belief that his voice wasn't that strong, it was far more so than he realized.

This bothered Santana. She was also bothered by the fact that she didn't understand why she was so bothered. Frowning deeply, she pondered this and came to the conclusion that she didn't like how utterly clueless Tink was about his own abilities. It wasn't that he downplayed them in an attempt for flattery or that he didn't recognize that he was actually much better than he realized; rather, it was that it didn't even occur to him that he was anything other than average.

And now Santana was annoyed. She imagined a dozen different frustrating scenarios which all involved her desperately trying to convince Kurt of his own awesomeness and him stubbornly rejecting her pleas.

Who the hell needed that?

She shook her head. No way was she investing herself that way. One, she didn't have that kind of time; and two, nothing she said would make a difference unless Kurt himself realized that he was in fact to superior to almost everyone.

So that's what she would tackle first: throwing off the pseudo-superiority complex he had developed to disguise his inferiority complex - Christ, Berry much? - and force him to accept that he was hot shit and anyone who said differently was just cold diarrhea. Really, she didn't understand what the problem was, especially since it was true.

She forced herself to tune back in to Tink's shenanigans, as he was now dirty dancing with Brittany down the red carpet. Well, it was more like Brittany was grinding effusively against Kurt's crotch while he stood there in a befuddled stupor, blinking like a deer in headlights. A really cute deer. She promptly decided his second nickname would be Bambi. She'd trademark it later.

There was just so much to unpack! Kurt and Quinn's past relationship; his eating disorder; his fledgling whatever with Finn; the strange fascination between Quinn and Mercedes; Brittany's bizarre clarity; as well as how much she herself wanted to see Kurt and Puck twist each other into sexy human pretzels.

A bitch's work was never done. And she still had to get a bead on those Made of Awesome t-shirts for Uncle Burt.

Right. Time to prioritize.

She stomped over, lightly pushed Brittany aside, and poked Kurt in his ribs, biting her lip to keep from laughing when he giggled like a choirboy told a filthy joke in the middle of Mass.

"You promised me gay porn."

He blinked heavily. "You're right. I did."

"I beg your pardon?" Quinn said in a strange voice.

"Say what?" Mercedes demanded.

Kurt sniffed. "I'm sure you three can find something to amuse yourselves for the next half-hour. Santana and I have a prior engagement."

"Half an hour?" Quinn dumbly repeated.

"Slow and steady wins the race," Kurt purred, leaning toward her and leering, smirking when a blush spread across her cheeks.

"Don't forget I'm sharing your bed later," she snapped.

He raised an eyebrow. "Don't forget Mercedes will be between us."

Mercedes gave Quinn the side-eye and cracked her knuckles.

He grabbed a beaming Santana by the hand and sashayed over to his desk to snatch up his laptop with the other. "Santana and I have some private ho stuff to do. Catch you all on the flip."

He then dragged Santana into his bathroom and slammed the door shut behind them, locking it.

Mercedes stared after them. "What the fuck was that?"

"Kurt watches porn?" asked a flabbergasted Quinn.

Mercedes turned toward her. "Right? I mean...what?"

Brittany rolled her eyes. "Next you'll be telling me you didn't think he jacked off."

Their resulting stares of incomprehension revealed that, no, they had never considered that.

Brittany was incredulous. "He's sixteen and a boy. Not that gender has anything to do with it, but come on." She shook her head. "And people think I'm the dumb one?"

She began rolling up the red carpet to stow later in the closet.

"But it's Kurt," Mercedes said blankly.

"He's not ready for sex," Quinn insisted.

"That doesn't mean he isn't horny," Brittany casually remarked. Her eyes then glazed over. "It has to be so hot. I'm sure a lot of people think Kurty would be a screamer or something, but I don't think so. I bet he's intense. I bet he never even makes a sound."

Her eyes, now feverish, turned toward his bed. "I can see him lying there, his t-shirt riding up, exposing a sliver of pale, toned stomach. His slender fingers teasing the waistband of his ducky pajama bottoms, small fissures of pleasure dancing on his fingertips as he caresses the soft material, imaging the pleasure those fingers will soon unleash..."

Quinn swallowed audibly and had to sit down. She realized a moment later she had sat on Kurt's bed. She squeaked and immediately stood, crossing to the couch, on which she collapsed.

Mercedes eyed Brittany. "You write fanfiction, don't you?"

Brittany shook her head. "No, but Tina does. She actually wrote that."

Mercedes' eyes bulged. "She wrote about Kurt getting off?"

Brittany nodded.

"Do you have a copy?" Quinn demanded.

Again, Brittany shook her head, this time sadly. "No," she whispered. She glared. "Tina wouldn't give it to me, so I had to memorize what I could." Her gaze turned thoughtful. "In fact, what she wrote about how Kurt looks naked is pretty accurate." She shrugged. "I guess she's seen him, too."

"Seen him naked?" Mercedes bellowed. "When? Why?"

Quinn rolled her eyes. "They are friends."

Mercedes huffed. "Well, yeah, but they're not that close."

Brittany and Quinn stared at her.

"What?" Mercedes barked.

"You do know they've been friends since fourth grade, right?" Quinn asked. "They don't advertise it, but they are that close."

Mercedes gaped like a fish. "But...but...he never told me," she whispered, sitting down on the bed. "Why didn't he tell me that?"

"Do you really want to know?" Brittany asked, suddenly very serious.

That tone was the only reason Mercedes didn't explode. Of course she wanted to know! "Yes," she said evenly.

Quinn immediately decided she wanted nothing to do with this conversation. Brittany could handle it just fine on her own, and Quinn herself had had enough of being the target of Mercedes' wrath for one night. Further, she was still annoyed that Mercedes had actively tried to persuade Kurt not to forgive her, as if the girl had any right to interfere in matters which weren't her concern. Finally, this needed to be said, and Mercedes would force herself to remain calm while discussing it with Brittany. No way would she be willing to risk angering both Santana and Kurt.

"You get jealous really easily," Brittany said nonchalantly, shrugging. "You get super protective of Kurt. I'm not saying it's a bad thing, but you sometimes take it too far. It's not like he's fragile or anything. He's the strongest person I know. No offense, Mercedes, but he was just fine before you got here. Yeah, he might not have been the most popular person, but he always had friends."

She sighed. "Look, I'm not trying to offend you or hurt your feelings, but you act like Kurt didn't exist as a person before you moved here from Dayton. That was a little over a year ago." She raised a brow. "Did you really think Kurt was just born when you arrived?"

Mercedes opened her mouth and just as quickly closing it, finding she had no ready answer.

"A lot of people like Kurt," Brittany continued, "many more than he realizes, but they're afraid of what will happen to them if they try to be his friend." She held up a hand when Mercedes again opened her mouth. "Don't. Don't say they don't deserve to be his friend if they're so afraid. You see how Kurt is treated. You know how people who are his friends are treated. You've experienced it firsthand. You can't dismiss their fear as though it's not legitimate."

Again, Mercedes closed her mouth, mostly because she'd never before been confronted with a Brittany so coherent and articulate.

"And some of those people don't approach him because they're scared of you," Brittany added. "You're a very intimidating person, and while I'm sure you don't mean to, you isolate Kurt. You've admitted that you don't want Finn near Kurt, and it's not like they're even doing anything other than talking. You tried to run off Quinn tonight, and I'm betting you tried the same thing with Sanny. The fact that Kurt didn't let you should tell you that he's a better judge of character than you give him credit for being."

Mercedes turned toward Quinn, but found the other girl staring down at the floor, and that's when she realized Brittany had a point.

"Am I really that bad?" she whispered.

"Unintentionally," Quinn said quietly. "We all know you mean well, Mercedes, but Kurt is a strong person. He had a life before you, and if he hasn't told you about it, you should stop and wonder why. I can understand why he didn't tell you about me, but why didn't he tell you about Brittany or Tina? Is it because it truly didn't occur to him, or is it because he knew what your reaction would be?"

Mercedes flushed. "What else don't I know?"

Brittany and Quinn exchanged a glance.

"He and Puck used to be really good friends," Brittany said, "before Puck and Finn became best friends."

Mercedes was thunderstruck and looked to Quinn for confirmation. The other girl slowly nodded.

"I don't really know what happened there," Quinn admitted. "They were friends, but never as close as Kurt and I were, or Kurt and Tina." She frowned. "Whatever it was, it must have been really bad, and they've been enemies ever since." She blushed. "I'm sure it didn't help when I chose Puck over Kurt." She shook her head. "Stupid," she mumbled.

"There was another friend," Brittany said, "a boy, but he moved away. I don't remember his name. I wasn't friends with Kurty then, but I wanted to be. He's a really great friend."

Mercedes was shaking her head dumbly and missed how Quinn turned away when Brittany began speaking of the other friend.

Brittany, however, missed nothing.