It's all Blaine's idea in the first place.
Kurt stares at him, one elegant eyebrow raised with the cattiest "are you kidding me" expression Blaine has ever seen on anyone, Tyra Banks included.
"He's getting better, isn't he?" Blaine tries to reason, tapping his fingertips on the table between them. "You said so yourself."
Kurt rolls his eyes, sitting back in a contemptuous huff. "Sure, he's stopped harassing me and told the rest of the team to back off, but it's not like he's suddenly out and became the world's most sociable guy. Never say I didn't try though," Kurt warns, wagging a finger, anticipating a rebuke, "I invited him to sit in during Glee, but he just mutters that "he's busy" and it's "too gay" even for him. Forget it, it's a lost cause."
Blaine frowns at that, but smothers it with a cough and a well placed "Please?" along with Grin #47, a potent mix of eyelash fluttering and his asymmetrical dimples showing.
Kurt glowers, but relents. No one can go against that face, least of all him.
"I'm warning you, Karofsky, one little..."
"Yes, I know, Hummel, you'll find new, creative ways to embarrass and destroy my repuatation." Karofsky snaps back, shoving the coffee shop door will a little more force than necessary, judging by the harsh jangling of the bell above.
"So long as we're both clear," Kurt sniffs, and walks briskly towards Blaine who's sitting in the back corner with a coffee mug already in hand. Karofksy shuffles behind him, and squeezes into the seat across from both of them.
Kurt eyes the two of them; Blaine who looks like there's nowhere else he'd rather be, and Karofsky with his bored expression and catatonic posture. Nuclear talks with Iran weren't as frigid as this.
Suddenly, Blaine shoots a hand forward, "Hello, my name is Blaine, it's nice to meet you."
Dave stares at the hand offered, but brings forth his own to grasp onto Blaine's, playing along. "Dave," he mutters, before letting go, not so subtly wiping his hands on his jeans.
Kurt glares at the motion, but Blaine seems oblivious for whatever reason. He waves over a waitress and lets her take their orders: (black coffee for Dave; a mocha chai pumpkin-spiced chococappucino for Kurt).
"That's not coffee, Hummel, you could've gotten the same thing if you just heated up milk and sugar together." Dave remarks, sipping on his own Colombian brew and setting it down while Kurt glares at him over the froth in his beverage. Blaine snorts, which Kurt whips his head around, eyes-wide, before watching Blaine's shoulders convulse until the boy practically collapses on the table in helpless laughter. Dave on the other side of the table puts up a confused face, wondering what the hell is going on.
Kurt pursus his lips and sighs. That mild schizophrenia diagnosis was looking to be more and more plausible.
Dave finally managed to get home after getting chewed out by Kurt for being such a "despicable lout, my god, Karofsky, would it kill you to...", but before he could open his front door, his phone in his front pocket started vibrating.
Hey, this is Blaine. Just wanted to say it was nice meeting you today. I'm guessing Kurt's giving you a hard time, but I think it went quite well. Would you be available next week for another cup of coffee?
Dave makes a face, and punches out a succinct "No," before sending it off and jamming the phone back into his pocket while letting himself in the house.
Hum. How about Friday?
Dave grits his teeth, shrugging off his jacket before typing out yet another "No."
Thursday after school.
How does next week Tuesday sound?
Dave stares at his phone, an onslaught of messages pouring in. Shit, this is bad. He has half a mind to call Kurt, but winces, remembering the verbal abuse he went through coming home. Telling him that his best gay not-boyfriend in the world is actually a sexual harasser? Does it even qualify as sexual harassment if it's an invite for coffee? What if coffee is some euphemism for gay sex? And even if he went to someone else for advice, then what? "Oh hey, Az, some gay dude I met like an hour ago keeps texting me for coffee, I don't know what to do, man."
Dammit, he may be gay (only maybe), but he hasn't turned into a freshman girl wondering if she should go to the prom with the senior quarterback.
Finally, Dave types back a dull "Fine," to which is phone whirs immediately afterwards with:
Great! Tomorrow, 2:00 at my place it is. I'll send you a google maps of my house. See you then!
Dave drives into the gated community, goosebumps crawling up and down his arms as he grips the steering wheel. Every house on the block is impressive- towering even, with lush gardens and huge driveways clearly meant for 8 or 9 sports cars and maybe a helicopter if needed. Dave shakes his head and concentrates on the road ahead, mentally pumping himself up. He was a footballer, a hockey jock, and a wrestler on the side, a triple threat of manliness by any means. He wasn't going to chicken out just because every mailbox he's passed looks like it's worth more than his entire house or he's probably being propositioned for some "coffee", whatever the hell that means.
He finally finds the house and crawls into the driveway slowly, his trepidation growing more and more despite the pep talk he'd given himself earlier. He gets out of his car and makes his way towards the massive oak front door with more bravado than needed, shrinking back slightly as he heard the doorbell booming throughout the house. Another fifteen seconds, and the huge doors crack open, and Blaine pops his head out, smiling.
"Hey, welcome, glad you found it, come in, come in," Blaine chirped, opening the door wider to let Dave in. Dave strides in, feeling his bravado leave him as he faces a gigantic foyer with a chandelier that seemed to rival that of the New Years Eve ball. Blaine nudges a pair of slippers at Dave, and the boy steps out of his ratty Pumas for a pair of blue fuzzy slippers (fine, he'll admit: they're comfortable) and follows Blaine further into the house.
"Mother!" Blaine singsongs as he strides into the kitchen. "Our guest is here!"
Dave blinks. Blaine's mom looks like some sort of perfect Stepford, 1950s, Princess Diana-esque wife, wearing a floral print dress, hair primmed and in place, pearl earrings, all while carrying a tin of freshly baked cupcakes.
Shit, cupcakes. Dave feels even smaller. He loves cupcakes, hasn't had one since fifth grade at Donovan's birthday party.
She smiles, all teeth and dark red lipstick and sets down the tray, motioning for Dave to take one, who does, darting forward with speed that would've made all three of his coaches proud, and stuffing the confection in his mouth and letting out a muffled, "fanks." Fuck, this was good. Blaine plucks one out of the tin as well, nibbling on it without much gusto.
"Hullo, dear," she hums, not at all perturbed by the snake-like strike (what's with this family and being perfectly fine with everything?) "I take it you don't go to Dalton?"
Dave's about to respond, but he chews faster and swallows before shaking his head, "No, ma'am."
The all too polite smile makes a comeback and Dave tries to force his face into a smile of its own, but it's too late as she wipes her hands on the pristine apron and taps him on the shoulder. "Well, you're welcome to anything in the kitchen, and if you need anything, just call me." She excuses herself and makes her way up the stairs, heels clicking the hardwood as she ascends.
Blaine wipes the imaginary crumbs off his lapel and tosses a barely eaten cupcake into the trash, giving Dave an involuntary eye spasm.
They shuffle quietly into the den, where a monster tv laid in front of them, and Blaine gestured for Dave to sit down and murmured that he'll be back with beverages.
Driven by some sort of perverse carte blanche, even though he's only been in the house for less than ten minutes, Dave swipes the remote and clicks it on to the Lakers and Spurs game, sighing as he settles in for something familiar after that whirlwind of surreal reality.
"I'm not much of a Spurs fan," Blaine sniffs as he comes back with the coffee (oh thank god it's actually coffee), both black as midnight and smelling heavenly, especially after all the sugar he consumed. It's held in a delicate china teacup and Dave frowns, feeling all the more awkward and overbearing as he tries to get a grip on the thin handle.
"Yeah? They're ok, I suppose," Dave says absentmindedly, sneaking glances at Blaine, completely at ease with a pinky out, even.
Blaine actually wasn't a terrible guy to hang out with—he was pretty chill, down-to-earth, and liked the NJ Devils, though he had a tendency to watch off-season tennis ("Really ,dude? Really?").
It's weird how well they're actually getting along. But Blaine keeps stuffing him with cupcakes and weird but pretty cool data and shit and Dave keeps him supplied with stories about running over guys on the football field and sandwiching other guys on the ice, and it's pretty nice to have such a captive audience.
"We should do this again soon," Blaine mentions out of the blue, as he walks Dave back to his car, "I'm thinking next week Saturday, same time at your place?"
"Ok, great, I'll look you up on google, see you then!" And with a wave, he saunters back into the house, leaving Dave at the wheel wondering what the fuck he just got himself into.
"This is my house."
Blaine looks around the foyer, at the quaint, but comfortable furniture, and Dave trudges up the stairs without telling him, leaving Blaine to scurry in order to catch up.
Dave opens the first door to the right, to a rather nondescript room. It's pretty standard for a teenage boy, with a jersey hung up and a signature on the lower right corner, a few model fighter planes hanging from the ceiling in the middle and a few jackets on the floor here and there.
"This is my room." In a way, Dave thinks he probably should give a better tour, but really, there's not much to look at.
"DAVE!" A girl about twelve storms into the room, hair done up in ponytail, gnawing on at least five pieces of gum and a sole ipod bud in one of her ear, the other dangling over her shoulder.
"Marcie!" David yells, "Would it kill you to knock?"
Marcie scoffs and crosses her arms, "It's not like you're ever doing anything important; are you done yet?"
Dave scoffs back, "I told you no!" throwing a crumpled up ball of paper at his sister, which she easily dodged, sticking her tongue out at him.
"Hurry up then! Elsie said she wants it!"
Blaine catches her eye, and he automatically smiles, to which she rolls her eyes and saunters out of the room. Blaine's smile dims a little. Usually when he comes over to his friends' place, their sisters would be blushing and stammering before scuttling away. What was with the Karofskys and forever being unimpressed?
"What is she talking about?"
Dave sighs, "Can you keep a secret?"
Blaine tilts his head. "Aren't I keeping one right now?"
Dave grins wryly, but relents. "Good point." He gets up and Blaine does the same.
"Don't tell Kurt about this." Dave mumbles, unlocking the door. Blaine is about to ask why, but his voice catches in his throat as he looks in.
"You..have a studio?"
Dave grunts in reply, shuffling into the room and opening the door for Blaine to come in. A gleaming mac sits in the far corner, and Dave is making his way towards it, shaking the mouse to bring up the screen and with a few clacks of the keyboard is signed in. He throws a pair of Bose headphones at Blaine, who almost doesn't catch it, too transfixed by the room and the jungle of wires on the ground, the huge speakers that look more at home in Madison Square Garden than an attic, and the gigantic mixing board at the center of it all.
Blaine looks up, and Dave has another pair of headphones on, and he taps one ear and motions him to come forward. He inserts the headphones into the mac as well, and starts up a song. "What's this?"
"Something I was messing around with." Dave murmured. Blaine waits, until he's suddenly sucker punched with realization: Teenage Dream. It's been spliced, stomped on, shattered into a million pieces —utterly raw, dirty and gritty. It feels like blood in his mouth, his heart disintegrating into nothing, and his mind wiped blank. He lets out a breath he doesn't know he's holding, gripping onto the headsets, hardly registering as Dave fiddles with the dashboard, making minute changes to the track in an attempt to look busy.
Blaine closes his eyes, and sits down heavily on the couch, feeling as if the rug was torn out from under his feet. Perry's voice, once so sugar pop and candy sweet is mangled into a haunting aria about nostalgia and regret. It's strangely freeing—cathartic and brutal and peaceful all at the same time. Like he's drowning in air, caught up in a frenzy, the same maniacal concentration that he only feels in that millisecond when he's onstage singing, that expanse of time when the world finally make sense. He looks up to see Dave wringing his hands a bit and he pulls down the headphones as Dave quickly does the same as he pauses the song.
"Do you…like it?"
"I did it to piss people off."
They're now lying on the couch, staring upwards at the ceiling as they listen to Dave's playlist. It's mostly quiet, with a few interjections here and there but they're mostly listening.
"It was back in 2007." Dave explains quietly, "That stupid Girlfriend song had just came out, and it was fucking everywhere. I hated it.
So I downloaded some software, fucked around with it, and uploaded it on youtube and made it look like an official video to trick the people who were looking for the real thing." He laughs. "Turns out people actually liked it."
"It's good." Blaine reiterates for the tenth time that afternoon, but Dave shrugs it off. "I don't understand, why is this such a secret though?"
"It's not really much of a secret," Dave grunts. "The team knows, but they don't really care. I've never really shared any of my stuff. Az requested some stuff to be mixed for him, or to make him a compilation album for some parties he throws, but nothing beyond that. He just doesn't really get it."
"Marcie wants some songs done just for her, so she can show it off to her friends, but it's not so bad." Dave grins, "she's got a good sense of what's good to distort and shock."
Blaine nods. "So why don't you want Kurt to know?"
Silence. Dave grits his teeth, "I don't sing. I don't dance. I love music, but I honestly can't stand the songs he likes or the stuff they sing in that club. Everytime he shows me his playlist, I keep thinking about how much I want to rip the songs into shreds, stuff them up with some bass line or some synths and play it backwards or something."
He laughs, "Maybe it's for the best, that I don't mess with him. He can have his music, while I have mine."
An uneasy silence fell between them, of what's not being said, and Blaine shifts, watching Dave out of the corner of his eye.
"Took me three summers to work for all this stuff," Dave explains, starting the conversation back up again, "including mixing songs for Marcie in exchange for her allowance."
"It's impressive." Blaine nods, "something out of a recording studio."
Dave struggles with the next phrase, "I'm…not so much ashamed as I just…I just don't want people to know. It's personal." He turns, scrunching his shoulders in as he taps out a rhythm.
"Yeah." Blaine breathes, letting out a sigh. "I get it."
"Are you interested in Dave?"
Kurt nearly spits out his half-caf, low fat, splenda-sugarized hot milk with a hint of coffee, to which Blaine offers up a napkin.
"Where the hell did that come about?" Kurt chokes, wiping his mouth and trying to remember how to breathe.
Blaine shrugs. "Just wondering. I think he's not all that bad as you make him out to be."
Kurt rolls his eyes, "I'm not that desperate, Blaine. I can keep my hormones in check enough not to ravish my ex-bully."
Kurt finally calms down enough to sip at his drink, trying to pretend he didn't see that Cheshire grin linger on Blaine's face.
It's fucking weird.
It finally hit Dave over the head, after two months. Bludgeon him, more like: Blaine's somehow became his new best friend.
It started out with Blaine simply coming over every single day after choir rehearsals, without warning. Dave raised an eyebrow the first few times, before slamming the door in Blaine's face. His resolve usually crumbled by the time he reached the last step up the stairs and he sighs, turning back and opening the door to a glowing smile that was too amused for its own damn good. Some days they hardly do anything but do homework separately, sometimes ordering a pizza if Blaine stays over too late for dinner, but most of the time they trudge up to the attic and crank out new remixes. Blaine, in Dave's opinion, has entirely too many ideas for someone who's just sitting there and giving out utterly vague orders like, "this needs to be more dance-y" or "make this part slower", forcing Blaine to at least learn some basics in mixing and sampling.
It kind of went downhill from there.
"God, fucking go home already." Dave whines, not caring if he sounds petulant and childish at this point.
Blaine waves it off, toggling the board switches as he readjusts his headsets. "You can go to sleep, I'll be gone when I'm done."
"It's," Dave checks his watch "four thirty in the morning, you fucker," Dave growls, "you've been saying that you'll be gone for the past five hours."
Blaine nods, "but I'm not done."
"Don't you have sectionals coming up?"
Dave groans, stomping over to the power switch and shutting everything off, ignoring Blaine's choked, "Hey!" He tugs at Blaine's blazer and leads him down the steps and across the hall to his room, shutting it before shoving Blaine to his bed and throwing a pair of sweatpants and a huge tshirt into his face. "Change. Sleep." Dave grunts, rooting through his closet for a sleeping bag and dragging it out, and nabbing a pillow off the bed before burrowing into the bag and turning over, intent on getting sleep.
Blaine does as he's told, slipping under the covers and changing underneath them, humming to himself.
"Don't you fucking dare," Dave warns from the floor.
Blaine softly laughs, "Aren't you excited though? The first ever DJ Taser and Clinical Production mixtape!"
"I keep telling you that we're not naming ourselves that. I don't want to become the laughing stock of the internet."
"I already made a domain name though."
Dave grits his teeth, " Can't we just use my soundcloud account?"
"Think bigger, Dave, and DonkeyKong94 is so uninspired."
"It's how everyone knows me as."
"Obviously we're in need of a rebranding."
"Oh, and we might as well buy a house in Vermont and adopt babies from China while we're at it!" Dave snaps, before clamming up. "Whatever."
"I wouldn't mind, actually," Blaine jokes, trying to keep the mood from sliding into awkward territory.
"Shut up, dude," Dave mumbles out before turning over and falling dead asleep.
"We need a couple of mics in here."
Blaine is tapping his foot along to a sample they just ripped while Dave is picking out synths and orchestral strings to go along with the song. Over the past few weeks, they've downsized the amount of space they need to walk, simply by moving the mixing board and the two macs closer together and sitting glued together from shoulder to knee on the couch. Dave doesn't mind, especially when the other alternative was Blaine practically sitting on his lap. They work rather efficiently this way, just a tap on the shoulder will redirect the other's attention and a rip and replug of the headphones will tune the other in as to what he was doing.
"What for." Dave mumbles absentmindedly, toggling the board.
"Covers!" Blaine shoves his mac right under Dave's nose, "I know how much you like Hird, we can start with him."
Dave shoves the computer back at him and snorts, intent on tuning him out, when Blaine starts singing, smooth and assured:
I believe in love,
Love believes in me,
Though it tribulates,
And my heart tests my sanity
And I know that this love is going to hurt someday,
But I don't care about that now.
And maybe all our truths will be lies someday,
But I don't care about that now.
Dave pulls down his headphones as Blaine starts humming the rest of the song. It's quiet, as Dave tries to shut the fluttering in his stomach down, and he clasps a hand to his chest. Fuck, is this what a heartburn feels like?
"How about it? Did I make it through the auditions?"
"Oh, don't call us, we'll call you."
He can't fucking believe it.
"What did you do and why did you it." Dave deadpans, staring at the screen, with Blaine hovering over his shoulder, practically bouncing with excitement. That bastard.
"Since you didn't like any of my name suggestions, I turned it over to our listeners to make some up in a contest." Blaine explains, all salesman sophistication and charm. Dave's not falling for this one.
"And you had to put up pictures of us, why?" He jabs the screen at his own image, his eyes masked with a black stripe as if he's in some sort of trashy supermarket magazine, "and when the fuck did you take this picture?"
"When you were sleeping, obviously. It's interesting how you won't wake up even when there's flash."
"Take it off." Dave's not even going to bother mentioning how fucking creepy it is to be photographed when sleeping. He's kind of given up on explaining these kind of things to Blaine.
"What, after all that work I went through to get it?"
"Oh, I can totally see how much you care for my dignity, as opposed to yourself," Dave scoffs, waving a hand at Blaine's image, all smiles and laughter and even messed around with in Photoshop, though there was a similar black line in front of his eyes too.
"You're just that flawless," Blaine shrugs, as he tries to pry Dave's hands off the keyboard to dissuade him from logging in. "Oh, please just keep it up, I'll take them down in 24 hours when the contest is over."
"Don't trust you," Dave mutters darkly, but in a moment of weakness at Blaine's hands wrapped around his, shit, they're all soft and shit, Blaine manages to pluck them off and rescue the laptop.
"Trust me, this is going to be phenomenal."
And Dave doesn't like the sound of that.
AN: The song Blaine is singing is I love you My Hope by Hird. Liquid, pure love. Look it up on youtube if you get a chance.
Thanks for reading; part two should be up pretty soon!