Odds and Ends
A/N: Yes, your eyes aren't deceiving you, it is indeed a new chapter of 'Odds and Ends'. After what is probably one of the longest breaks ever. Unfortunately, it is also the last chapter. I've had some personal turbulence, writer's blocks and I also got somewhat disappointed with Glee, and then Cory died, which effectively put a permanent damper on all my Glee projects.
However, in gratitude for all those who have read, reviewed and favorited this story over the years, I didn't want to mark it as 'complete' without a token of my gratitude to all of you so please find below one last chapter.
It is a collection of unconnected, random Hudmel moments from their high school years that we won't ever get to see on the show ever again. I wanted to share them with you in the hope that they make you smile or even laugh if I'm lucky. Some are funny, some are angsty and some are just plain whacky but they have one thing in common – Furt. Enjoy!
Of Domestic Drabble-y Nature
~ Pizza & Movies ~
"Boys!" Burt announced from the door as he and Carole entered the hall. "We're back and we got pizza!"
Loud stomping could be heard instantly and down the stairs plunged Finn reminding Burt more of a stampeding rhinoceros than a teenage boy. Coming into the kitchen with Carole and a drooling Finn on his heels, Burt exchanged looks with his wife and didn't even attempt to hide his smile.
Finn looked greedily at the boxes his stepdad deposited on the table.
"Marcello's!" he exclaimed and opened the first box.
Kurt, who was seated behind the kitchen table with a sowing kit, gave the pizza a silent look and pouted. "Thick crust."
"Well, yeah. Finn loves it, I love it, Carole-"
"-chooses to remain neutral," she supplanted pointedly.
"Uh, anyways-" Burt fumbled for words, giving his wife a sideways glance, "-I always take the thick one."
"Even though you know I hate it."
"Dude, what is wrong with you? It's like saying you hate Christmas!" Finn interjected, his mouth stuffed with at least one whole slice. In times like these, Kurt could swear Finn had a retractable jaw, like a snake's.
Kurt shot him a haughty look. "Please, Finn, it's disturbing enough to hear you talk, I don't need the visual of a half-chewed pizza in your mouth, too."
Finn just shrugged, ignoring one of Kurt's death glares with a confidence that came from months of practice.
Trying to lighten the atmosphere, Burt cleared his throat. "We also got the DVDs. So as soon as Kurt stops sulking, I think we're ready for movie night. I chose some of all-time favorites."
Kurt shot Carole a reproachful look.
"You let Dad pick movies?" he asked.
"It's not like he gave me any choice, sweetie," the elder woman replied defensively.
"Better Burt choose than you," chimed in Finn in between bites.
"Hey!" Kurt turned on him, his tone full of reproach. "My taste in movies is just as great as my taste in pizza."
"Great, that means the pizza's going to randomly burst into song and be three hours long?"
"The Sound of Music, Rent, Wicked," the countertenor started enumerating. "What do they all have in common?"
Finn scratched his head before replying, "I fell asleep during all of them?"
Kurt sucked in a sharp incredulous breath before exclaiming, "You Neanderthal knuckle-dragging brute! They're classics!"
"Classics as in old and boring as hell."
Burt and Carole exchanged another look. So it was going to be just a typical family movie night.
~ Road trip ~
"No. No more country music," Kurt said categorically.
"But it's deep and meaningful and-"
Kurt shot him a sharp look. "Finn, seriously. Put that CD on and I'll have no problem pushing you out of this truck while it's moving."
"But we've been driving for three hours and I'm sick of this trip!"
"Yes, keep whining, that will definitely get us there faster."
"And I need to pee."
Kurt shot him an exasperated look. "Again? What are you, five?"
"I just have a very small bladder."
"That's not the only part of you that's peanut-sized."
"I'm not gonna waste a really good come-back on you now. But I have it and it's time will come," Finn announced but then his attention was caught by a sign they were passing. "Oh, there's a bar over there!"
Kurt gave the sign a scornful look. "It looks like one of those filthy trucker bars, no way I'm stopping there."
"If you don't stop, I'll wreak terrible music vengeance on you."
Kurt blinked. "How do you know words like 'wreak' or 'vengeance'?"
"What, a guy can have layers."
"Of fat, you mean."
"And they use them in the Left4Dead voice-over," Finn added with a wide grin. "Who ever said zombie-killing wasn't useful."
Kurt rolled his eyes. "Who ever indeed."
"I mean it, Kurt, stop the car," Finn insisted, starting to squirm in the seat. "It will be five minutes, you don't even have to get out."
"Fine." The smaller boy sighed heavily. "After all, who am I to keep you away from germ-infested hellhole-smelling public latrines."
Finn shot him a puzzled glance, not understanding half of what his stepbrother had said, and jumped out of the car as soon as it stopped.
Kurt watched Finn disappear inside the buidling and reached to take all Finn's country CDs and chuck them through the window when in the corner of his eye he saw his stepbrother running out really fast through the door he had just come in. For a moment Kurt thought he'd either dozed off or his tired brain was projecting a scene from some old noire movie with Charlie Chaplin being chased, if it weren't for the look of genuine horror on Finn's face.
"Start the engine! Fast!" Finn was screaming at him while flailing his arms wildly.
A snide comment dying on his lips, Kurt decided this was no time to be contrary and did just that.
"Drive! Fast!" Finn panted as he vaulted himself into the car.
Kurt drove off with a screech of tires, trying to keep his eyes on the road instead of gawking at Finn. They stayed silent for a long while, Kurt breaking every speed limit and Finn looking through the back window.
After what must have been twenty miles at least, Finn seemed to finally settle down. "I think no one's following us," he stated, seating himself more comfortably and letting out a sigh. "You can slow down."
Kurt shot him a sideways glance, not sure if he wanted to scream or laugh hysterically.
"Should I even ask?"
"No," Finn replied curtly.
"Well, that was the most fun I ever had. Without actually having any fun."
"It wasn't a trucker bar."
"It was some private place. They had all these guns out but I thought they were fake or BB guns so I came in and asked where the little boy's room was and this guy said that little boys like me shouldn't wander onto private property. So I said bye and walked out."
"That's one way to put it," the countertenor remarked. "You ran like crazy! And I myself wouldn't be ashamed of the register you hit with your shriek."
"It was a- a dignified retreat!" Finn objected. "And it was a manly bellow!"
Kurt snorted. "I'm just happy they didn't shoot your butt off in the middle of your manly bellow. This is Texas, Finn." Kurt shook his head. Sometimes he wondered how Finn managed to survive until the age of seventeen.
"Yeah, I'm kinda happy about that myself," Finn replied.
They rode in silence for a while.
"Kurt, I still need to pee."
~ A Good Brother ~
"Dude, your phone's ringing. For the fifth time," Puck said, giving Finn a punch in the gut.
"I'll take it in a moment," Finn replied, almost succeeding in blowing Puck's head off.
"You've said that the last five times," Artie pointed out, aiming a vicious kick at Finn's head.
"Maybe it's something important," Puck chimed in.
"One. Minute. Guys," Finn enunciated, his tongue sticking out in focus as he tried to fend off both of them.
"You're losing anyway," Puck said snidely. "Big time," he added pointedly as he managed to land a punch in Finn's gut.
"You're cheating!" Finn exclaimed as he was tackled to the ground.
"It's me," Puck shrugged. "What did you expect?" he asked unashamedly and Artie sniggered.
Finn watched as his head got blown off and threw the console on the couch. "You both suck. Big time," he said and went for his phone. Five missed calls. All from one number, the only one he knew by heart and could recite in his sleep. He felt his heart beat rise as he dialed it.
"Finn?" came a sniffle from the other end and Finn felt so much worse for not picking up sooner.
"What's wrong, buddy?"
"I…can you come pick me up?"
"What happened? Are you OK? Is there something wrong with your car?"
"No…I just don't think I should be driving right now."
Finn figured he wouldn't be getting any coherent explanation right now but this sounded bad. Like Godzilla-meets-King-Kong bad.
"OK. Tell me where you are and I'll be there in five."
"I'm at the mall."
"The mall? What are you…?" Finn stopped short deciding now was not the time for that. "Wait at the food court and don't move, OK?" he said.
"OK," came another sniffle and Finn felt rage rise inside him. Whatever caused Kurt to shed a single tear was going to get torn to pieces with his bare hands.
Kurt hung up and Finn rushed into the hall. "I gotta go, guys."
Fifteen minutes later…
"Buddy? What's wrong?" Finn skidded to a halt next to the solitary figure siting at the furthest table of the food court.
"I'm not your ten-year-old cousin, Finn," Kurt snapped but it was more a reflex than a real jibe.
"Dude, my cousin? I tackle him to the ground every time we meet."
"Why am I not surprised," he said and then got up. "Okay, let's get out of here. I've been under the artificial light long enough and I've got a headache."
Finn nodded and followed Kurt silently. Only when they were in the car did he dare to ask, "Are you gonna tell me what happened? Cuz it's fine if you don't want to but if you need me to tear arms off of someone or something, I'm here."
"It's Blaine," Kurt said simply. "And I don't wanna talk about it."
"Uh, OK, sure," Finn was perfectly fine with dodging that particular mine field. He was bound to say something inappropriate and Kurt would get mad at him and deny him all his Cheetos for a week again. "Can I kung fu his brains out, though?" he added as an afterthought.
"Finn, that's very sweet of you but you'd faster kung fu your own brains out," Kurt pointed out. "Still, thank you for the offer."
"And I'm sorry I messed up your game night."
Finn reached out a hand, hesitating momentarily before clapping Kurt lightly on the shoulder. "It's OK," he said, discomfited. "I'm glad you called me."
Kurt patted the boy on the back. "You're a good brother, Finn Hudson," he appraised. The quarterback reached over and ruffled his hair slightly, making Kurt cry out in alarm and indignation.
"I so am," he grinned, ignoring Kurt's killer glare.
~ Haircut ~
"I can't believe Mrs. Simmons would give us, like, twenty pages to write for next week!" Finn sputtered indignantly as he looked into his English notebook. It was a homework Sunday afternoon and both boys had just settled themselves in Kurt's room to go through their tasks for the coming week.
"Been there, done that..." Kurt said, not taking eyes off his French textbook. "She does it to all her classes."
Kurt raised his eyes, blinking at him. "...what?"
"Feels like you've been there at the place, done that thing..."
"That's deja-vu, Finn."
After that Finn decided it was better he sat quietly. He managed to do that until he didn't hear a small thump from Kurt's side of the room. As he looked up, he saw that his stepbrother was fast asleep, his head buried in his French text.
Later Finn could not tell what made him do what he did next, apart from the fact that there was this irresistible force pulling him towards his stepbrother as his eyes focused on his head.
Particularly, on a single wayward lock of hair on Kurt's head that was sticking out. Finn tried to ignore it and go back to his text. After a violent internal struggle, though, he finally gave in and fished out a pair of scissors from Kurt's desk. Then he approached the smaller boy stealthily. His full attention on the wayward lock, he moved the scissors and watched the hair waft slowly down- only to meet Kurt's big eyes staring straight at him.
"What in hell's name are you doing?" the smaller boy asked, a pleasant look in his eyes, as Finn jumped away. It was that evil, I'm-going-to-tear-your-face-off type of pleasant look. Finn gulped and got ready for a very fast exit.
"Your hair- it was-"
"It was what? Attacking me?" Kurt slowly got up. "Because nothing short of that justifies you ever coming near my hair! Ever!"
Kurt took a pen from his desk. "They say that verbal insults hurt more than physical pain," he said twirling the pen in his hand. "They are, of course, wrong as you will find out when I stick this in you."
"Did anyone ever tell you you're really scary? Like Alien-meets-Freddy-Krugger scary?"
"Please don't kill me?"
"We'll see," Kurt said conversationally. "This is your cue to start running. And it better be fast."
~ Mano e Mano ~
When Finn finally dragged himself out of the bed it was past ten but since it was a Saturday, he really didn't care. Still half-asleep, he stumbled down the stairs in search of breakfast. Upon entering the kitchen he blinked owlishly, noticing Kurt standing at the table top, a bowl and a peeled apple in front of him.
"Dude, your impersonation of an inanimate object is really coming along" he said teasingly but when Kurt didn't reply, he came closer and tried to look over the smaller boy's shoulder. "What's in the bowl?" he asked, his curiosity peeked and all remains of sleep gone.
"Oatmeal," Kurt replied in a strange voice.
Finn frowned, sitting down with a huge bowl of Cheerios. "Yeah, I'd get upset, too, if I had that for breakfast," he said but then Kurt turned around and Finn could get a real look at his face. His eyes were really big and there were tear trails on his cheeks. The taller boy swallowed.
"Don't cry, dude! I didn't mean it, oatmeal's cool! It's- uh, healthy and has all these amphetamines!"
Kurt snorted, as if against himself, "Vitamines, Finn," he corrected and seated himself next to the quarterback, placing the bowl and the apple in front of him. "It's not the oatmeal, you doofus," he said.
"Then what is it? And don't blow me off cuz it won't fly, man," Finn warned him. "I think I saw you cry once in my whole life and that was when that slushie wouldn't come off your Dolce&Banana shirt."
Kurt sniffled. "That was a really nice shirt."
Finn gave him a meaningful stare and the countertenor sighed, his shoulders sagging as if he was giving up. Then he started talking. "After my mom died...I don't remember that much but I remember my dad's beard," he said slowly, his voice breaking at the beginning but becoming stronger with every word. "I don't remember him crying or talking about it...I just woke up one morning and I noticed he had a beard. And it kept getting longer and longer and he got thinner and stopped going to the shop. My mom died and my dad stopped living. Then one morning I woke up and there was breakfast on the table. Oatmeal and a peeled apple. And he was clean-shaven. And he was crying. Later that day he cooked us a turkey for dinner but it came out raw inside and we just cracked up...we were both hurting but from that day I knew we were going to be fine."
Finn just stared at him, feeling a rush of affection for Kurt.
"And ever since then, on my mom's birthday, we honor her memory by having the same food," Kurt continued, motioning at the bowl and apple. "It's a sort of reminder of what we've lost but also of the bond we have." The smaller boy stopped and fiddled with his thumbs anxiously. "I...I'm sorry if I'm making you uncomfortable-"
"Dude!" the other boy interjected. "Uncomfortable? If anything, I feel honored that you'd share this with me!"
He was looking at Kurt with such sincerity and love that all Kurt's doubts had to dissuade. He cracked a watery smile and then he was being pulled into Finn's safe, warm embrace and he buried his face in his shoulder, inhaling the familiar scent.
"I never told this to anyone before," he whispered.
"You can tell me anything," Finn said, dropping his cheek on the top of his stepbrother's head. "I can't promise I'll always understand what you're saying but I will always be there for you."
"Thank you, Finn."
After a moment's silence, Finn uttered uneasily. "Um, does this mean we're gonna have raw turkey for dinner today?"
Kurt laughed, hugging Finn tighter.
~ Sleeping Habits ~
Kurt sighed contentedly. This was turning out to be a really nice, peaceful evening. He'd done his nails, just got off the phone with Blaine and the newest copy of Vogue was winking at him from the coffee table next to a glass of freshly-squeezed orange juice. He tucked his legs underneath him making himself more comfortable and reached for the magazine-
-when suddenly there was loud stomping from the stairs and Kurt knew that was the end of the peace in peaceful. Soon enough, his stepbrother trudged in and seeing him, grinned and basically threw himself onto the sofa and the smaller boy.
Kurt let out a surprised 'Oomph!' as all air was knocked out of his lungs by the impact.
Finn didn't seem to mind as he stretched himself to his full length, his head landing in his brother's lap comfortably. Kurt shoved him away.
"I'm not a pillow, Finn!" he objected gruffly.
"True," Finn muttered sleepily, and settled himself back in the countertenor's lap, undeterred by his glare. "You talk too much."
Kurt rolled his eyes. "To what do I owe this pleasure?"
"What ya doing?" Finn asked innocently.
The countertenor narrowed his eyes at him. "I'm knitting a sweater. What does it look like I'm doing?"
Finn ignored his snappy tone, "Hey, wanna have a sleepover?"
Kurt looked at him like he'd just grown a second head. "Finn Hudson, you are not sleeping in my room. I don't care that you had your Neanderthal friends over for a game marathon and they reduced your bed to splinters so that now you don't have anywhere to sleep."
Finn gave him an indignant look. "It was an accident that could happen to anyone!"
"Yes, anyone who has a peanut for a brain and the motor skills of a drunk platypus!" Kurt exclaimed.
"I have no idea what a plat- pleta- whatever is but they can ride the motor pretty fine!"
Kurt wasn't listening to him. "They were like trained apes! Only without the training!"
Finn let Kurt go on his rant and then continued tirelessly, "Please?"
"You have such a big bed and you know the couch is too small for me."
"No." Kurt sighed. "Fine, maybe we can reach a compromise-" He was such a humanitarian sometimes.
Two hours later…
"Hey, um, Kurt?"
"Then why are you talking back to me?" Finn asked rather rationally. It didn't make it any less infuriating, though.
"Won't make that mistake again, promise," Kurt hissed.
"Seriously, dude," Finn pressed.
The countertenor turned on his other side and groaned, "What is it, Finn? And can't it wait till morning?"
"It kinda can't," the taller boy said.
"If it's anything short of you murdering somebody, it can wait," he enunciated.
"It's just that…your floor's kinda hard and uncomfortable."
"You're kidding me."
"No. It really is hard and not comfy."
Kurt pinched the bridge of his nose, amusement fighting with exasperation on his features. "That's not what I-" he stopped short with a resigned sigh. "It's a floor. It's supposed to be hard," he snapped. "You're not getting into my bed. You did this to yourself. It's not my fault you have pea-brained friends who go around breaking stuff."
"Come on, Kurt," Finn pleaded. "It's a big bed and I don't move around too much."
"But Kuuuurt," Finn whined.
"You can't leave me here like this and just go to sleep!"
"I really don't like you right now."
"But I won't! It's really uncom-"
"All right, dammit! You can sleep with me just shut it already!" Kurt finally gave in, grinding his teeth. "Gaga, you're such a pain!"
"Anything that gets the job done," Finn deadpanned and Kurt could feel his lopsided grin in the dark.
He rolled his eyes. "But if you hog the sheets or kick me with your giant long limbs one single time, you're hitting the floor."
Kurt scooted over to the far end of his bed to make space. He felt the covers lift and the mattress dip to the side as his brother settled down next to him.
"Thanks," Finn breathed into the dark with a happy sigh.
"You're welcome," Kurt replied gruffly. "This is the one and only time. If your new bed doesn't arrive tomorrow, you can sleep in the backyard for all I care."
"Sure," Finn said dismissively, half-asleep already. "Stop talking and go to sleep."
"I'm serious, Finn."
Kurt huffed in irritation. He could feel Finn's body shake lightly as the other boy chuckled soundlessly.
Kurt sighed, feeling sleep coming over him, too. "Night, Finn. You dork."
"Don't push it."
"Love you, too, Finn."
This was somewhat heartbreaking to write but I hope I'm leaving you with a smile on your faces and some happy Furt memories.
Once again a tremendous thank you to all of you who took the time to read and fave/alert, and especially those who were kind enough to review – before I started to write this story, I truly had no understanding of the power of your reviews. I thank you for each one, you've given me so much encouragement and have helped me keep the flame of this story idea alive for 62 chapters! When I started it, I didn't think it would go beyond ten…So, I truly appreciate it.
It would mean a lot if you left one final review, and maybe tell me which of the drabbles you liked best! See you around!