A/N: Meh. Bits of it I like, bits of it I don't. It turned out slightly angstier than intended. Oh well, I guess. Also, I actually wrote the Baby, It's Cold Outside bit before the episode came on (KURT LOVES BLAINE! IT'S CANON! TAKE THAT KURTOFSKY SHIPPERS!), but I liked the way I wrote it, so that's why it doesn't seem to have anything to do with the actual scene. Just go with it.
Disclaimer: Glee isn't mine, and neither are Kurt and Blaine (unfortunately.)
He doesn't really feel disappointed the first time. For one thing, he and Blaine barely know each other at this point, and he's starting to feel embarrassed at the fact that out of all the people he knew, he called Blaine after Karofsky kissed him. Blaine had sounded surprised over the phone, but he talked Kurt through it, calmed him down, and immediately agreeing to come to McKinley the next day.
Blaine had given him his number and said to call if he ever needed to talk, but Kurt was sure this wasn't what he had in mind.
He pokes at the food Blaine bought him, knowing that he should probably eat if only to calm his nerves, but he can't find the energy to put even a bite in his mouth. Every time he lets his mind wander, he thinks of Karofsky and his rough lips.
"I'm really sorry it didn't go as planned, Kurt," Blaine says for the millionth time. Kurt forces a smile and shakes his head, managing to take a sip of his water. Instead of eating in the restaurant, they are perched on the wall outside, sitting next to each other.
"It's not your fault. I'm sorry he pushed you around like that. I'm used to it. You're not."
"You shouldn't have to be used to it. That shouldn't be normal. I can't believe it's gotten that bad without anyone noticing."
Kurt bites his lip. "Yes, well, we live in two very different worlds."
Blaine's eyes are on him, intense, and Kurt thinks, vaguely, that Blaine looks extremely attractive when he's angry. Really, he looks attractive any time, but right now… suddenly Blaine's hand is on his, squeezing it tightly, blurring the line between acquaintances and friends. Kurt's thoughts are conflicted between yes, yes, yes, and too soon. "You're so much braver than I am." Blaine says quietly.
And then he turns away and changes the subject, and Kurt is only disconcerted for a moment before trying his best to join in on the conversation.
Mercedes is in a better mood after finally getting to eat her tots, but only slightly. After dinner at Breadstix, she is perfectly polite to Blaine, to the point where she's almost cold. They shake hands and Kurt gives his friend a tight hug and a kiss on the cheek before she leaves. Blaine and Kurt linger there for a little while after Mercedes leaves, leaning up against Blaine's car.
"She seems really cool." Blaine says, and Kurt nods, shoving his hands deep in the pockets of his jacket.
"She's amazing. You should hear her sing. She could outsing Rachel Berry any day; I don't know why she doesn't get more solos." He pauses, a slight blush creeping over his features. They have this unspoken agreement between them never to talk about Glee Club. Not that he lets what Rachel or the others think control his life – they only know the bare minimum about Blaine – but because he doesn't want them to think that he would fall into a Jesse St. James scenario. Looking at it from their point of view, it's a legitimate concern, and he had been against Rachel dating Jesse from the beginning, so it would by hypocritical of him to let that happen (not to imply that he is dating Blaine or ever will.) However, he also refuses to give up Blaine, so they compromise by pretending that Glee doesn't exist. At least until after sectionals.
"She's mad at me," he says, a little more quietly, and Blaine glances over at him. He can't remember the last time his best friend had been really, truly mad at him. Probably not since he'd briefly broken her heart by claiming to be in love with Rachel.
"Is it because of me? I guess I have been taking up a lot of your time lately. I'm sorry." Blaine taps his fingers against his leg and looks away, the way he always does when he's embarrassed or nervous.
"No!" Kurt says a little too loudly and a little too quickly, causing Blaine to raise one perfectly sculpted eyebrow. He never had a thing for eyebrows before (no matter how obsessively he trims his) but he can definitely see himself developing one. "No, it's not you. Never you. I may or may not have cancelled plans with her and she may or may not have taken it well." Blaine sighs a little, making Kurt feel worse than he already does. "But you know what, screw her. It's not as if I don't see her every single day. It's such a long drive for you to get down here. So what if I have other friends, she can just deal with it, right?"
Kurt can't bring himself to put any force behind the words. When Blaine looks up at the gray sky and doesn't answer, Kurt feels like he's shrinking into himself. He feels sick to his stomach and he's pretty sure it's not because of Breadstix's excuse for Italian food. "Except I'm the only constant friend she's ever really had," He mumbles, not even sure why he's saying all this aloud. Blaine has this ability to make him blurt out everything he's feeling. "And vice versa."
"I'll back off, if that's what you two need."
"Don't, please, don't! I love Mercedes, I do, and I'm going to set things right with her, but you have no idea how great it is to have someone else to talk to. You just… you get me. There are things I can talk to you about that I don't even feel like I can talk to Mercedes about." He blushes when he realizes what he's been saying, and Blaine smiles, propping himself up on his elbow against the car. "Is that… weird?"
Blaine shakes his head, his smile growing wider. "Not at all. I actually feel… kind of honored." Blaine laughs a little, running his fingers through his slicked-back hair and letting loose a couple of curls. Kurt has never seen Blaine's hair without gel in it, but suddenly he wants to, if only to see if it's as absurdly curly as he claims (and maybe to run his hands through, just once.)
If Blaine wanted to lean forward and kiss him right then, Kurt wouldn't have complained at all. In fact, now that he's thought of it, he wants it. Badly.
As it is, he does lean forward, but not for a kiss, missing a perfect opportunity. He leans in close to Kurt's ear, his breath warm against his cheek, and murmurs, "For some reason I feel the same way."
Kurt can't suppress a shiver as the other boy pulls back. "Which is why I feel okay about saying this." Blaine takes half a step back. "Be good to Mercedes, because she loves you more than you even know, and you need her too. You have me now, too, and that's great, and you know I'm here for you. But don't push your other friends away, because I can't – and won't – replace them."
It's such a change in direction that for a second Kurt can only stand there, stammering. There are a couple of things he appreciates about Blaine so far – one of them is that he's a good listener, and the other is that he is honest. However, he hadn't expected such brutal honesty. Finally, he manages to say, "I'm not pushing my friends away."
Blaine doesn't reply.
"I'm not." He insists.
"Okay." He smiles and gives Kurt a quick, one-armed hug that is so friendly and so unromantic that he can't believe that he expected this boy to kiss him just a few moments ago. "I'll text you before I go to bed."
Kurt nods and watches as Blaine drives away, unable to identify a single thing he's feeling.
Kurt doesn't give him any information other than when and where, and because Blaine can act like a lovesick puppy sometimes (Wes and David's words, not his), he meets Kurt at their regular coffee shop without any questions, even though it's too long a drive despite meeting halfway and he has a History test in the morning. Kurt is already there, sitting in their usual spot, a huge poufy loveseat in the corner of the room that threatens to swallow the other boy's petite form. Blaine makes his way over, shrugging off his jacket as the warmth of the tiny shop fills him, and Kurt hands him a steaming cup of coffee (too much sugar, just enough milk, he always jokes when asked how he takes it) before he can say a word.
Despite the couch being big enough for three people even though it's technically a loveseat, it has this uncanny ability to funnel everyone sitting there toward the middle, so as usual he ends up right next to Kurt, their shoulders and legs awkwardly touching. Neither of them ever mentions it even to joke about it. Blaine secretly doesn't mind the contact. He has a hunch that Kurt doesn't mind that much, either, but he can't ever be sure. "Good to see you," He says, and Kurt nods with a smile that is definitely forced. "Thanks for the coffee."
"Anytime." Kurt is clutching his own coffee like it's a lifeline, his perfectly trimmed nails digging into the Styrofoam, and Blaine resists the urge to hold those hands in his until they relax even a little bit. Kurt doesn't look at Blaine even though Blaine can't stop looking at him. "How are you?"
So they're back to this, the painfully polite conversation he wishes they could get past. Blaine goes along with it. "Not bad. Lots of studying to do and all that. Nothing really new, I guess." He absently blows on his coffee but doesn't take a drink, setting it down on the table in front of them instead. "How about you?"
"I… will get back to you on that when I have an answer." Another forced smile, watery and weak, and Blaine is more worried and protective than he probably should be. He is a naturally protective person, but sometimes he worries that he overreacts when Kurt is involved. The problem is that he and Kurt talk all the time, but the other boy rarely tells him anything. He doesn't know how things have developed with the Karofsky drama because Kurt – understandably – doesn't like that topic of discussion. He can only hope that Kurt doesn't get beaten to a pulp, and sometimes only breathes easily when he gets a text from his friend at the end of the school day.
He continues to watch Kurt while hoping that he's not being creepy. He might be overanalyzing the way Kurt's eyes are faintly rimmed with red – not like he's been crying, more like he's been trying not to cry – and bottom lip is trembling, stuck out in a faint point. Before he can ask what's wrong, Kurt sighs and lightly rests his head on Blaine's shoulder. Kurt is actually taller than he is, so it should be awkward, but he's slumped so far down in the couch (something very uncharacteristic of him) that it isn't.
This hasn't ever happened before, but it's good. Maybe overstepping the boundaries of the careful friendship they have, he can't complain one bit. Blaine lets out a breath he hadn't known he was holding and looks down at Kurt – whose eyes are shut tight – and asks softly, "What is it?"
Kurt shudders against him, and there's that damn protectiveness again, mixed with an urge to kiss the other boy's forehead (or other places, too. Blaine isn't picky.) He barely resists it. After a short silence, Kurt says, "I'm transferring."
Blaine freezes up. He doesn't know what to say or do. All he can think is no, no, no. It wasn't supposed to happen like this.
"What?" He manages to say.
Kurt looks up, finally meeting his eyes. "I've got the weekend to get the paperwork turned in, but it's all sorted out. I guess on Monday I'm officially a Dalton boy." Kurt smiles and it breaks Blaine's heart, because he's trying, trying so hard to make this okay when it's not, and he knows it's not.
A selfish part of Blaine is happy, or wants to be happy, but the rest of him just feels defeated. Because he doesn't know what happened to make Kurt do this, but if he had just said something then Blaine could have helped him somehow. Instead he'd been chased away, and soon he would be just another Dalton boy. And yes, Dalton has saved Blaine, fixed him, but he isn't Kurt. Kurt would be so safe there that it would stifle him, mold him and shape him into someone unrecognizable. Just another uniform.
You were supposed to be the one who could survive it, he thinks, a bit selfishly. You were supposed to be the one to push through when I couldn't.
It isn't fair.
Courage hadn't helped. If anything, it had made everything worse.
"Great," he hears himself say. He can't even try to sound enthusiastic. Kurt's chin trembles. Outside it starts to storm, the rain beating down on the windows and making the tiny coffee shop feel like a bubble, cut off from the horrible outside world. Courage. Blaine repeats it in his head like a mantra to the rhythm of the rain, but the word starts to lose its meaning. Courage. "That's… that's great. Maybe I can get you a Warbler audition. It'll be nice to spend more time with you."
"I didn't apologize to Mercedes," Kurt says, his voice shaking. "Not the right way, not so she believes me. And the others. They're going to hate me." A tear escapes, and he wipes his nose on his shirtsleeve, and Blaine doesn't even think before wrapping his arms around Kurt, holding him tight and shutting his eyes. Kurt doesn't resist, just curls up and buries his face into Blaine's soft sweater. They don't speak. There isn't anything they can say. Blaine rests his cheek against Kurt's soft hair and listens to the rain and the unsteady, jerking sobs of the boy in his arms and the slow breaking of his own heart.
He never knew his heart could break for another person.
And underneath it all he still wonders, the way he always does when he's with this beautiful boy, what would happen if he tried to kiss him.
He doesn't dare to try it.
At first he resented the bird. Not because the little ball of yellow fluff had actually done anything wrong, it pretty much just sat there being adorable and loud. It probably just had more to do with the fact that his first Warblers practice had been so embarrassing and he had brought that embarrassment on himself by blurting out some stupid joke about coalmines. New Directions would have laughed. But then, New Directions didn't give their members birds. Puck suggested some crazy hazing rituals, but this took the cake.
It didn't help that Blaine just sat there while Kurt rambled on with his suggestions for the Warblers, and didn't even try to comfort him when Wes and David shot his ideas down.
But somehow it was easier to blame Pavarotti for all of it. Not only did he have to get used to a new school and harder classes and new friends, but now he had to worry about a bird. He'd never had a pet before. What was he supposed to do with it?
Of course, he would start to actually care about the thing when it was sick and dying. Kurt stares at the sad little thing sitting in its perch, uncharacteristically silent. He only looks away when he hears footsteps, and Blaine comes into the room.
"I got your text." He smiles. Kurt can't seem to stay mad at Blaine for any long amount of time. It might be because he's so much more fun and nice when they're alone (something that confuses him, and he wonders why Blaine feels the need to act so stuck up around everyone else). Maybe it's because every time he sees Blaine he finds something else attractive about him (how can someone be that perfect, really?). The reason doesn't really matter.
"It's Pavarotti. I think he's sick." Only then does he realize that he doesn't actually know if Pavarotti is a boy or a girl. Shows how much he's been paying attention.
Blaine sits down on the couch next to him – Kurt has come to realize that Blaine doesn't really understand the meaning of 'personal space', but he can't find it in him to complain about that. He takes one look at the bird and says, "Oh, he's just molting."
Kurt gapes at him, feeling incredibly stupid. He should have been able to figure that out. Blaine continues to ramble on with a speech that sounds suspiciously like a metaphor for Kurt's current situation, but he must be reading too much into it. "He'll be singing again in no time." Blaine concludes, smiling at Kurt, who can't help but smile back. That's when he realizes that Blaine has his hand on his knee.
This has to mean something. He wants to ask about it, but can't find the courage. Blaine drops little flirtatious hints all the time, but Kurt still isn't sure if the other boy likes him back. It's stupid to fall for the first gay boy he meets, but he can't help it.
Their eyes meet, and it feels like time has stopped.
He could just kiss me right now.
Then Blaine pats him on the knee and stands up, leaving him alone with Pavarotti. Kurt slumps back on the couch, letting out a deep breath.
"What do you think, Pavarotti?" He says quietly. The bird chirps in response, fluttering its wings and sending a couple of feathers falling to the floor of the cage. Kurt comes to the conclusion that while Blaine is smart and charming and gorgeous and knows a lot about birds, he can be a bit of an idiot.
When Blaine asks him to sing Baby, It's Cold Outside, he can't quite believe it. He claims that it's just a rehearsal, and it very well might be. Kurt is okay with that. After all, Blaine is an absolute dream to sing with, and their voices blend perfectly.
But that song. He knows that Blaine knows that it's his favorite Christmas song. Yes, it could be a coincidence. Kurt wants to think it isn't.
So they sing. And fitting the theme of the song, Kurt teases and flirts and tries to act as cute as possible while staying just out of reach the whole time. "How can you do this thing to me?" Blaine croons, and if Kurt didn't know better he would think that he really means it, is really pleading with him. Kurt leans up against the couch, a sly little grin on his face. He is blatantly flirting, has been since the song began, and surely Blaine is flirting back. The way their eyes kept meeting, all the fleeting touches. Was it even legal to ask another boy to sing that song with you unless you wanted in his pants? There had to be a law against leading someone on like that.
"There's bound to be talk tomorrow..."
"Think of my lifelong sorrow..." Blaine falls to his knees on the couch, and his pout could be the cutest, sexiest thing Kurt has ever seen.
"At least there will be plenty implied..." There are a lot of Is in that line, which makes Kurt do a lot with his tongue. He flutters his eyelashes up at Blaine as he sings.
"If you caught pneumonia and died..." Blaine is very focused on Kurt's lips as he sings, and Kurt nearly forgets his next line.
"I really can't stay..."
"Get over that hold out..." They both collapse onto the sofa as they sing the final line. "Oh, but it's cold outside!"
He can't help it. As soon as the song ends, he bursts into a fit of giggles, Blaine soon joining in. It's absurd, all of it, and wonderful. Their shoulders and legs shamelessly press together, and when Kurt finally gets over his laughing fit, he turns his head to look at Blaine.
God, they're close. Their eyes meet, and Kurt's breath catches in his throat. Blaine's hand moves, very slowly, to brush a stray hair from Kurt's eyes, and the hand stays, feather-light on his cheek. He can feel Blaine's breath on his face - he smells like toothpaste and spices and something that can only be described as Blaine - and he is so close and it would take barely any movement at all to close the gap between them and this is it, he's sure that this must be it... Kurt's eyes drift shut...
Without any warning the comforting warmth of Blaine's body next to his vanishes and Kurt's eyes shoot open. Blaine smiles down at him as if nothing had happened, and sure, nothing really had happened, but damn it. Kurt feels hot and cold at the same time, frustrated, disappointed, and a little hurt, and he clenches his hands into fists against his leg.
Blaine tucks his hands into his back pockets and rocks back and forth on his heels. "Well, you sure are better than the girl I have to sing this with. Too bad we wouldn't be able to sing it together."
"Yeah." Kurt manages to say. And that's just it. They wouldn't be able to perform it together. Maybe that's his way of saying no, I'm not interested, no matter how much I flirt with you.
Blaine tilts his head to the side. Kurt honestly can't tell if it's an act or not. Can he truly be that oblivious?
"Sure. Totally fine. Why wouldn't I be fine?" He stands up, making sure to cross the room as far from Blaine as possible because if he were close to him he probably wouldn't be able to resist jumping him right then and there. He picks up his textbook and slams it shut. "I think I'll finish my homework in my room. Pavarotti needs feeding anyway."
"You look upset." Blaine frowns. "Are you sure..."
Kurt smiles as coldly as possible. He knows that he's being unreasonable, but all these feelings are just growing stronger and he's being more and more obvious about it and Blaine is being so oblivious yet such a goddamn tease and it's just too much. "I guess it just hurts to realize that I really am that naive. Merry freaking Christmas, Blaine."
He barely catches a glimpse of Blaine's face, confused and hurt, before he turns and leaves.
"I'm not going,"
"But there's eggnog!"
"I'm not going, Blaine!"
From the other side of the door he hears Blaine groan. "It's the last day before Christmas break. You have to come to the Christmas party! It's like, unheard of not to go. You need to come out of your room every once in a while."
"I beg to differ."
"Kuuuurt!" Blaine whines. He actually whines. "Wes and David want you to go."
"Wes and David don't even like me." Kurt crosses his arms over his chest and lies back on his bed, glaring at Pavarotti when she starts chirping. He isn't in the mood for parties, or Christmas. He just wants to lie in bed and mope. About what, he's not even sure. Maybe he's worried about going home for Christmas, worried that his old friends from McKinley won't want to visit him while he's there – or maybe he's even scared that they will want to visit him and he won't know what to do or say and he'll ruin everything between them more than he already has. He pretends that he isn't still mad at Blaine, but it's not quite true. They're back on speaking terms, but Kurt is still frustrated beyond belief.
"Now you're just being ridiculous. I'm coming in." Before Kurt can protest, Blaine lets himself in, leaning back against the door. "One, they totally do like you, they just don't really know how to deal with you yet, and two, you are totally coming to this party."
Kurt groans. "Why do you care so much?"
"Because it's the last day we'll get to see everybody before we go home, and I hate seeing you so bored and lonely. Don't argue, you know it's true. Look, you don't even have to stay for long. Just come down for a little while."
Kurt sighs, looking anywhere but at Blaine. His eyes land on his phone, sitting face up on his bed. A text from Blaine is on the screen, which reads I don't know what I did, but sorry I made you mad Be happy! . It doesn't fix anything, but it's sweet all the same. Technically, they made up after their little spat, but he isn't over it. Kurt looks back at Blaine, who is patiently waiting for him to answer. "If there isn't eggnog left I will be very upset."
"If that's what'll get you in a better mood I'll give you all the eggnog you can drink." Blaine grins that impossibly beautiful grin, and Kurt can't help but blush as he grabs his phone and stands up, following him out the door.
They don't talk a lot as they walk through the hallways. Everything is decorated in red and green, and there is snow falling heavily outside every time they pass a window. It really is beautiful, Kurt thinks with some amount of pride, because without him the decorating committee would have been lost. The school is quiet and empty, other than one or two students that they pass. Everyone is at the Christmas party, and tomorrow everyone will be gone, including him.
It'll be weird, going home.
"You're really quiet lately," Blaine says, jerking Kurt out of his reverie. "You know you can talk to me about whatever's bothering you, right?" He looks genuinely concerned.
But that's the problem. He can't. Not when Blaine is causing the problem. "Thank you. I guess I just don't have a lot of Christmas spirit," He lies.
"Maybe we can fix that." Blaine pauses, and smiles at him – Kurt really hates the way his heart always skips a beat when Blaine looks at him like that - and they step into the party together. There's a fire in the hearth and a tree in a corner and the promised eggnog next to a plate piled high with sugar cookies. It smells like Christmas in this room and everyone is laughing and happy. Kurt is suddenly struck with the realization that, when he goes home, it will be the first Christmas he's spent with more than just his dad in a very long time. This thought makes his head spin for some reason, but luckily, another interruption from Blaine draws him away from those thoughts.
"Here," He says, handing him a plastic cup of eggnog and a gingerbread man. Kurt can't help but break out into a smile. Blaine is a tease and Kurt often doesn't understand him at all, but he is always looking out for him. He takes a bite off the gingerbread man and mumbles his thanks.
"I'll be back in a sec. Wes is calling me over." Blaine waves at someone across the room and disappears. Kurt clutches his cookie for dear life and moves to the other side of the room, leaning up against the wall where he can watch the party. He doesn't see many people he knows yet, but then, he doesn't really know many people besides the Warblers yet.
A short, blond boy that Kurt doesn't know glances at him and snickers. He doesn't know why, so Kurt ignores him. But other people close by keep glancing over at him too. He sips at his eggnog in silence, finishing it and the cookie off and setting the cup down just as Blaine makes his way back over to him.
He has an absolutely wicked grin on his face as he approaches, and suddenly everyone is looking at them, most of them laughing softly. Kurt glances around nervously. "Er. What's going on?" Blaine is right there, closer than necessary, and he nods up at the ceiling as an answer.
Kurt looks up.
"Oh," he says weakly, and it's all he can get out before Blaine's lips are – finally, finally – on his, cupping his face in his hands to draw him closer. There are no fireworks, no dramatic music in the background. Actually, everything is very quiet. There is nothing but him and Blaine. Kurt shuts his eyes tight, throwing his arms around the other boy's neck and pulling him even closer than before. Finally.
They break apart to the sound of wolf whistles and catcalls, and Blaine smiles nervously. Kurt laughs. He can't help it. His arms are still wrapped around Blaine's neck, and his lips are tingling. He can taste Blaine, and it's absolutely intoxicating. "What took you so long?" He demands breathlessly. It's not what he means to say. Because now that it's finally happened, he isn't so bothered that they waited.
It was worth it.
Oh, god, it was worth it.
"I don't know – I thought you didn't feel the same way, but I couldn't wait any longer, and-"
"You're an idiot sometimes, you know that?"
Blaine laughs and grabs his hand, pulling him out the doors and away from the party, ignoring the enthusiastic encouragement from the other boys. Kurt can't stop grinning. He assumes that Blaine is taking him back to his room, but apparently that would take too long, because he stops, dragging him into a slightly more secluded corridor before pressing him up against the wall and kissing him again.
Just as Kurt tries – badly, he's sure – to deepen the kiss, Blaine pulls back barely an inch, resting his forehead against Kurt's and breathing a little heavily. "Kurt…" the other boy groans. His name has never sounded more beautiful. Kurt leans in to kiss him again because he's so sick of waiting, but Blaine stops him. The only things separating their lips are two of his fingers. "If it's too much, or you're not ready, tell me," He whispers. "I mean it. Tell me."
"Blaine…" He understands why, understands a little bit why Blaine has been holding back (though Kurt still thinks that Blaine was just being a clueless idiot.) His kisses come with the knowledge that these lips have kissed other people before and will probably kiss many more. And suddenly Kurt feels very young, standing here with this amazing, beautiful boy that he has done nothing to deserve. Everything is new and terrifying and wonderful, and he feels small and a little bit scared, but ready. God, he is so ready for this.
"Blaine, just shut up and kiss me."
He wastes no more time.