A/N: This just popped into my head this morning, and it's not done yet, but in honor of Glee season 2 starting right about now, I'm posting it. I've only got spoilers through season one so far, duh, but I might add more of season 2 as it progresses. This is a future fic, so there's a lot of wiggle room and hopefully I won't get Jossed too badly.
Don't forget to review at the end and tell me how awesome it was! (or sucky, you know, whatever)
What the Hell
Chapter 1 – The Video
Kurt Hummel could not believe what he was seeing. Could. Not. Believe. It. This had to be one of those doppelganger things. There was just no way. Absolutely no way in hell. After all the crap he'd given Kurt over the years for being a "homo", there was no way. No freaking way!
Kurt paused the video and clicked back to a frame where the guy's face was visible. There was no freaking way! But it looked so much like him. It couldn't be, could it?
Kurt spent so much time pondering over the clip that he didn't hear his roommate come in until she said, "Hey, Kurt," right next to his ear, making him jump. "What are you doing?"
Once his heart landed back in his chest again, Kurt asked, "Rachel? Does that look like Noah Puckerman to you?"
"What are you watching?" she laughed, pushing him aside so she could get a better look at the screen. "Porn? It's three in the afternoon!"
"So?" Kurt asked with a shrug. "I don't have class again until seven and I was in my own room, with the door closed, thank you very much."
"Aw," she smiled, hugging Kurt tightly despite the way he tried to pull away from her. "You miss Nick, don't you? You're better off without him, sweetie!"
"This isn't..." Kurt sighed in exasperation. Rachel just would not stop babying him about his last break up, even though it had been almost a month ago and he was fine. "Would you just look at this guy's face and tell me that's not Noah Puckerman?"
"Well," she said, blushing a little as she actually turned her attention to the video. "Oh, my god! It is!"
"And I'm not imagining him totally banging that other guy?"
Nodding her head, her eyes glued to the screen, Rachel asked him, "How? Why?"
"I have no clue," Kurt insisted. "I have absolutely no idea, Rach. Think he needed some cash?"
"This is a pay site?" she laughed, looking over at him fondly. "You know there's about a million free sites, right?"
Kurt ducked his head and mumbled something about viruses, because he really didn't need to get into a discussion about the merits of paying for good quality porn with Rachel Berry. "Besides, if I hadn't paid, we wouldn't have found this."
"We have to ask him about this, don't you think?" Rachel asked Kurt, that manic gleam of a project in her eye. "I think we have a moral obligation, to make sure he's not doing this for drug money or something. If Noah's in trouble, it's our duty as his friends and former teammates to get to the bottom of this."
Kurt wanted to tell her not to bother, that it was Puck's life and he could do whatever he wanted with it, but some part of him, deep in his gut, had to know why Puck would do this. Why would he get caught up in something like this? He wasn't really gay. He couldn't be. Right?
"I found him!" Rachel squealed excitedly when Kurt got back from class exhausted. Why, oh why, did his professor have to be such a douche when it came to grading his literary analysis? He'd worked really hard on that paper and even after being humiliated for his words in front of the entire class, he still didn't understand how they could just dismiss his ideas like that. Just because he was gay didn't mean he was wrong in saying that those two male characters definitely had some sexual tension between them. Well, fuck them and fuck Rachel for being so loud all the god damned time. "Found who?"
"Puck!" she cried ecstatically. "He's here in LA."
"I take it," Kurt sighed, rubbing his offended ear and setting his bag down on the kitchen table, "Puckerman was difficult to find and somehow you persevered?"
Nodding, Rachel said, "Finn had no idea where he was and neither did Quinn, and his Facebook page hasn't been touched since graduation, two years ago. So then? I called his mom!"
Kurt nodded and went to slump on the couch, but Rachel grabbed his arm forcefully and insisted, "We're going to go see him. He's not that far away."
"Tonight?" Kurt complained, but he knew that once Rachel had an idea in her head, it was almost impossible to change her mind.
"Yes, tonight," she insisted. "What if Noah had an overdose or something tonight and we totally could have prevented it by going to see him? It's fate that you found him today and if there's anything I know about fate, it's that you never keep it waiting!"
"Not even for beauty sleep?"
"Especially not for beauty sleep!"
Kurt couldn't believe they were doing this. Rachel had written down Puck's address and plugged it into her car's GPS system, following the instructions diligently. And now, they were standing outside an apartment building, Rachel's hand headed toward the buzzer for apartment 607. Kurt fantasized one last time about grabbing her arm and tackling her to the ground so he didn't have to go through with this, but he didn't. He just let it happen.
After a buzz and a short, pregnant silence, Puck's voice came over the speaker, sighing, "What?"
"Hi, Noah!" Rachel said cheerily. "It's me and Kurt! We just found out you were in town and came to say hello!"
"You do realize it's ten o'clock at night?" he replied grumpily, and Kurt was sure he wouldn't let them up. "Isn't that past your bedtime, Rachel?"
"I've loosened up a lot since being at college, haven't I, Kurt?"
Kurt thought no such thing, but under pain of excruciating … pain … Kurt called toward the speaker, "That's right. Now, can we come in Puckerman, or am I going to have to drag Rachel away from here kicking and screaming?"
"Fine," the guy sighed again, hitting the buzzer so the front door opened, which Rachel caught quickly before it could lock again, pulling it open and barely giving a glance back to Kurt to make sure he made it through as well. Living with Rachel for almost the past year, Kurt had learned that while Rachel had many moments of kindness and consideration, they usually didn't happen when she was excited about something. And she got excited a lot. So much so that Kurt was almost sure she had a chemical imbalance in her brain. But she paid the rent on time, let him make her over once a month, and was nice to his boyfriends, so living with Rachel wasn't all bad.
By the time they got up the elevator to the sixth floor and found Puck's cracked-open apartment door, Kurt found himself surprised by the quality of the building. The carpets were all clean, every corner was well lit, and there was even a table with some plastic flowers and a mirror in the hallway the elevator opened into. Either Puck had a sugar mama or he was doing pretty well for himself.
Rachel made it to the door first, of course, knocking a few times as she opened the door. "Hello? Noah?"
"Hey, guys," Puckerman called, waving them into the living room where he was sitting, immersed in a video game and staring at a huge, sixty-inch TV. He was wearing normal clothes for him, loose jeans and a long-sleeved T-shirt, which made his setting even weirder by comparison. "Just a few seconds," he insisted. "I'm teaching these noobs a lesson. There's pop and beer in the fridge if you want anything."
"Oh," Rachel stuttered, looking around the room, which Kurt also studied. The furniture wasn't super expensive, but it was nice. The place had obviously been decorated by a professional, and it wasn't the tiny closet both of them had been expecting. And it was clean! The whole situation was surprising, to say the least. "Okay!"
Kurt rolled his eyes as Rachel went to investigate the kitchen, hovering for a few seconds before deciding he looked like a creeper and sitting on the armrest of Noah's couch. The guy looked almost the same as he had at graduation, which wasn't too big of a surprise, but this place! "Is that a baby grand?" Kurt asked, pointing to a darker corner of the apartment, near a set of floor to ceiling windows.
"What?" Puck asked, quickly looking at Kurt and then over to the corner before his eyes whipped back to his game. "Yeah, dude. Named her Georgia. You can play her if you want. And my guitars are all in the spare room."
What the hell?
Rachel then returned with a Diet Coke for her and a club soda for Kurt, both in clean-looking glasses with perfect ice cubes.
What. The. Hell?
"Uh!" Puck suddenly yelled. "Yeah! Take it!" He jumped up and did a little victory dance before flopping down. "I owned you, Hudson! Fuck yeah!"
Quietly, Rachel asked Kurt, "He's playing with Finn? He said he didn't know where Puck was!"
"Maybe he just didn't want to tell you," Kurt pointed out. Things had not ended well between Rachel and Kurt's step-brother and he was constantly in the middle of that argument. It got annoying on a major scale.
"Yeah, dude. I gotta go. Your brother and your ex are here," Puck said into his microphone, pausing for a moment like he was listening. "I dunno, dude. I'll talk to you tomorrow."
Then, Noah whipped off his headset and turned off the TV, giving both former gleeks looks as he brushed past on his way to the kitchen. While they were alone, Rachel took a seat on the couch and pulled Kurt down beside her, like suddenly she was afraid of whatever had taken over Puck's body and put him in this life. Kurt couldn't deny that he had a similar feeling.
In a few seconds, Puck came back out of the kitchen with a beer in one hand and a bottle opener in the other, which he used together as he was sitting down in the easy chair next to the couch. "So, what brings you dweebs to my crib?"
"Umm," Rachel tried to begin, but failed, so Kurt stepped in for her.
"We just found out you were in town," he explained, "and we thought we'd come check up on you."
"Don't trust me to live my own life, huh, Hummel?" Puck replied with a raised eyebrow as he took a sip of his beer and sat back. "I'm cool, dudes."
"Well," Rachel insisted, setting her drink down on the coffee table, which actually had coasters (coasters!), "the thing is. We … um …"
"We saw you in a video," Kurt spat out in a rush of word vomit. "And, uh … we wanted to make sure you weren't like, a meth whore or something."
Puck looked both of them in the eyes for a few seconds before bursting out laughing and almost spilling beer all over himself. "A meth whore? What the fuck is wrong with you people?"
"It wasn't just any video, Puckerman," Rachel snapped, her usual reaction to being laughed at. "It was porn! Gay porn!"
Puck just shook his head and kept laughing. "Seriously? A meth whore? Give me some freaking credit!"
"It was just one example," Kurt fumed, and yes, he knew he reacted almost as bad as Rachel after getting laughed at. It was something he was working on. "But obviously you're doing okay, so we'll get out of your hair. Or whatever." Kurt stood halfway up before Puck stopped him.
"No, no!" he grinned. "Stay a minute. Geez, Hummel. Settle down. You know, I wondered who would be the first of my old McKinley pals to find that. Makes sense it was the gay dude." It had been him! Kurt had been living in denial since that afternoon, insisting to himself that it had to be someone else. It couldn't be Puck in that video. But now Puck was admitting it was him? Kurt got a little lightheaded and then a little queasy when Puck scooted forward in his chair and asked, "So, which one did you see? Did you think it was any good?"
"What?" Kurt squeaked, trying not to remember every detail of the video and failing horribly.
"Dude, I've got, like, fifty videos out there. Which one did you see?"
Kurt's mouth opened in shock and all he could do was look back at Rachel for some help. Unfortunately, she looked just as tongue-tied as he felt. Gathering up some steam, he finally managed to ask, "What?" He then proceeded with, "Why? How?" and "What?"
"Are they all … with other men?" Rachel managed to ask quietly after Kurt's outburst.
"Dudes," Puck insisted with a bob of his head, " how do you think I can pay for a place like this? Gay films pay, like, fifteen times more 'cause there's so many guys that either won't do them or aren't hot enough to make any money at it."
"You've actually done it…" Kurt said in a mystified voice, responding to Rachel and Puck's questioning looks by saying, "You've turned being a sex shark into a means of income…"
"Hell, yeah, I have!" Puck chuckled. "But, it's just for now, you know. While I'm working on finding a band and getting some things, songs, written."
"Sure," Rachel nodded. "Of course. Right."
Puck smiled and shook his head again, taking another swallow of beer. Then, he said, "Wanna guess my film name?"
"No, I really don't," Rachel insisted.
Kurt shook his head, completely mortified by this whole conversation. "Please don't say it's Jewish Thunder or something ridiculous."
"Uhn-uh," Puck insisted. "It's Noah Puckerman."
"But, that's your real name…"
"Apparently it was dirty enough already," Puck replied with a grin. "The execs didn't even want to change it, so I was all like, 'Okay, whatever dudes. I'll take my three grand now.'"
Kurt and Rachel shared a look that hovered somewhere between surprise, disgust, and acceptance for both of them. It really shouldn't have been this surprising, should it? Kurt should have realized what perfect sense this made. Puck wasn't gay, he was just a whore. And he liked it that way.
Then, the front door opened and Puck called, "Hey, dude! Come meet my friends."
A guy, probably around their age, early twenties or so, came into the room with an intrigued look on his really very handsome face. His head was covered with a mop of loose, blonde curls and Kurt fell deeply in love at first sight, before he realized just how much this guy resembled his ex. Yeah, that was a slippery slope to go down, and Kurt was not getting caught in it again. Especially since he was more likely than not straight.
Puck stood up, taking his beer with him, to go clap this new guy on the shoulder. "Guys, this is my roommate, Ben. Ben? These are some friends of mine from high school. That's Rachel Berry, super star of the glee club, and that's Kurt Hummel, male soprano."
"Male soprano?" Ben asked with a warm smile, extending his hand for Kurt to shake, which he warily did.
"Well, not so much anymore," Kurt admitted. "But for a large portion of high school I had the exact same range as a sixteenth-century castrato."
"Dude," Puck grinned. "Not something to brag about. Just call yourself a tenor and be done with it."
Kurt shrugged at Puck as Ben moved on to greet Rachel. "And I've actually heard a lot about you, Miss Rachel Berry. Noah insists you're going to be the biggest star in a few years."
"Really?" Rachel said, beaming and primping as she shook Ben's hand. "He said that?"
"Several times," Ben nodded. "Especially after we saw you in the UCLA production of Phantom."
Turning to stare at Puck, Rachel asked, "You came to that? Why didn't you stop and say hello?"
"Because that stupid Jesse kid was there making a big deal out of himself," Puck explained, "and I didn't want to get arrested for manslaughter. Seriously, Berry. How could you work with him after that?"
"Oh, it was a challenge," Kurt chimed in, rolling his eyes. "Believe me. I was there after every show, drying those dramatic tears."
"You two are together?" Ben asked and all three McKinley grads laughed and/or snorted.
"No, no," Rachel insisted, touching Ben's arm in that flirty way she had. "Kurt and I are just roommates. Neither one of us could stand the dorms for more than a semester, so we naturally joined forces."
"Yeah," Puck piped up. "And Hummel's queerer than a three dollar bill, isn't that right?"
"Guilty," Kurt agreed with a nervous little laugh, hating that mocking tone that Puck still hadn't lost, even two years after high school.
Ben nodded with an assessing smile and Kurt realized Puck's roommate was checking him out. What. The. Hell? Now Puck had a gay roommate and was doing gay porn? What had happened to the guy that could smell gay on a kid like a bloodhound and then bully that poor kid within an inch of his life? The world would surely end at any second. Any time now. Holy crap, Ben was smiling at him now, a gesture which Kurt returned awkwardly before moving closer to Rachel, so she could protect him. He wasn't that inexperienced, but his relationship with Nick had lasted almost a year and he hadn't dated a whole lot before and not at all after. He felt about fifteen years old, and not in a good way.
"Well," Ben said finally, giving Rachel one last nod, "I've got an early morning, so I'm gonna turn in. It was nice to meet you."
"You too," Kurt mumbled, along with Rachel's more fervent response.
Then, Ben leaned over and whispered something to Puck, fingers brushing his wrist in a flirty way. Puck nodded and mumbled something back, returning the touch a little before going back to his chair. Ben disappeared into a back hallway of the apartment and Kurt collapsed back onto the couch, his mouth still open.
"Roommate?" Rachel asked with a curious tilt of her head.
Puck smirked. "With benefits."
"Right, then," Kurt decided, needing to flee in self preservation before his brain completely broke down. "We'll get going now. It was nice to see you, Puck."
"Dude, chill out," Puck insisted, blocking Kurt's escape path with his leg up on the arm of the couch. Oh, god. Kurt couldn't help but get a flash of what Puck would look like naked, now that he had seen it on that damn video. The whole thought made Kurt weak in the knees and he decided maybe it would be best if he sat down again. "Tell me what's up! How's UCLA?"
"Alright," Kurt replied, seriously confused. He looked to Rachel for help. Usually she could be counted on to go on and on at length about her field of study and her position in the drama program and all the famous people she'd made contacts with already. But she was just sitting there, dumbfounded. Thanks a lot, Berry!
"I, um," Kurt started. "I'm studying voice performance and creative writing, with a minor in textiles. It's hell, but it's going to be so worth it in the end."
"For what?" Puck asked with a little laugh. "Being a singing, writing, tailor?"
"Being a singing sensation," Kurt insisted, "who seamlessly transitions into writing about fashion once his stardom inevitably fades."
Puck nodded, "Of course. That makes so much sense, it's almost sickening. What about you, Berry?"
"Diva," she replied. "Of stage and screen. It's the only option. Tonys, Grammys, Emmys, Oscars. All in my future."
"So what does that mean for now, besides being in Phantom last year?"
"Basically a lot of training," she said, really getting into it now that she got going. There was the Rachel Berry Kurt knew and tolerated. As she went on and on about singing lessons and dance lessons and drama lessons and everything that made Rachel Berry a star, Kurt couldn't help but watch Puck. He looked the same as in high school, though maybe his five o'clock shadow was more impressive than it used to be. But he seemed so much calmer, and even surer of himself than he had been before.
What. The. Hell?
Eventually, Puck said, "Finn told me about the break-up, Rach. Seeing anyone new that I can torture him with?"
"I have several suitors at the moment," Rachel insisted, though when Puck looked at Kurt for confirmation, he found himself shaking his head just a few inches and mouthing, "No." It was a big joke all over campus that Rachel was a hot damn mess and none of the guys would go for her. It didn't really help that the break up with Finn had happened just before Phantom started last spring and Rachel went a bit nuts with the fame and with working beside Jesse St. James. She was better now, but Kurt still kept an eye on her and kept hoping, because he was capital G gay, she wouldn't try molesting him in his sleep out of desperation.
"What about you, Hummel?" Puck asked, and Kurt sensed more there than just vacant politeness. It was as if Puck was actually interested in him. In Kurt. It had to be just the shock of seeing him again, like this, with a sweet apartment and a crazy career and a live-in (male) friend-with-benefits. Kurt was imagining that interest. Right?
Before Kurt could answer, Rachel said, "Kurt's boyfriend, Nick, dumped him a month ago. It's been rough, but we're pulling through, aren't we?"
"Rach," Kurt sighed. "He dumped me, not us. Alright? How many times do I have to tell you?"
"But he was such a good cook, Kurt! I've been starving since you guys broke up, which is good for my figure, but murder for my soul."
Puck laughed, loudly, before he covered his mouth, eyes flicking with concern to the back of the apartment. "So, I take it neither of you cook?"
"Not well," Kurt agreed. "Though I'm really good at making salads, the whole heat application process still eludes me."
"Right. You guys should come back for dinner sometime. Maybe Saturday? Ben makes an awesome dinner every Saturday. Like, pot roast and shit. I'm telling you, it's a good thing I spend half my free time in the gym, or that dude would have me as fat as Coach Tanaka. Seriously."
"Um," Kurt said, looking over to Rachel, who had a hungry look in her eyes. "Yeah. Yeah, okay. Saturday."
Then, Puck dug around in his jeans pocket and pulled out something which he tossed at Kurt. His phone. "Put in your number and I'll text you when to show up."
What. The. Hell?
Also, there aren't nearly as many Puck/Finn gleeks as Puck/Kurt out there. If you like my writing, give my story "Not Alone" a chance. I promise, even though it doesn't have much Kurt, it's really good!