Okay, wow. Um.

I don't even have words to convey how sorry I am. I just…this past year or so was kind of insane. I know, I know, I have no excuses. I was just very, very blocked when it came to this story. And I'm so, so sorry for that. And I must worn you that this isn't my neatest work- I have a feeling that there are a LOT of mistakes, but I don't use a beta or edit my stuff very much, so work with me.

I realize that most of this story is rendered completely divergent from canon. Good lord, I have a character named Sebastian. For those of you just tuning in, I created him in January of last year, when this was first published, and so my Sebastian in NOT based on canon Seb. Cool? Okay. (I swear that Ryan Murphy reads fanfiction, you guys.)

Well, here it is. 'The Love Dare' returns from its, er…lengthy hiatus.

(also: any Spanish that is used in this chapter may not be exactly right. I got help from someone else- I'm certainly not fluent- and it may say 'pancakes are good' or something like that.)

THIS CHAPTER IS DEDICATED TO MY BEST FRIEND SHELBY BECAUSE I FORGOT HER BIRTHDAY AND THIS IS HER PRESENT


Knock, knock.

"Someone's at the door, Kurt," Johnny Martinez said on the afternoon of Day Nine of 'The Love Dare', his voice monotonous as he worked furiously over a Latin translation, scribbling and erasing frantically. His older friend cocked his head in wonderment, no longer absorbed in his reading.

Intrigued, Kurt sat up on the Johnny's bed, curious and wary at the same time; he had absolutely no clue as to whom the visitor was, and simultaneously hoped that it wasn't Blaine. Gently lowering 'The Love Dare' from in front of his face, Kurt placed the book under the bedside table and cautiously stood before stopping.

"Johnny, you're closer to the door. Open it."

The freshman's head snapped up, his translation forgotten as Kurt fixed him with an attempt at a domineering stare. Disbelief clouded his youthful features as he shook his head. "Can't you see I'm busy?" he asked incredulously, gesturing toward his homework with his pencil.

Kurt sighed and crossed his arms over his chest, hugging himself and rocking back and forth on the balls of his feet. He knew that his fear of Blaine having found out about his recent escapade involving First Church of God and coming to confront him about it was wildly irrational; he'd asked Anne not to mention it to the dark-haired senior, and she'd seemed sincere. However, there was still a part of Kurt that couldn't help but become uneasy upon thinking that Blaine could possibly know; one of the youth members may have mentioned it, or he could have seen Kurt as he'd sung his solo to the group.

Either way, Kurt was hesitant.

"What if it's Blaine?" he asked Johnny, his eyes wide and slightly fearful as they flickered between the freshman and the door.

Johnny's brows knit together on his forehead, and Kurt knew what was coming next before it even left the boy's mouth. "Doesn't Dare Nine say something about greeting your 'spouse' in a way that reflects your love for them?" he asked, referencing that day's dare as he turned to fully face Kurt. "This is your chance to check this one off of the list! That is, unless you don't have a greeting prepared…I can help you! Come on, we can think of something before-"

His rambling was interrupted by three more knocks on the door.

"I'm afraid that he may have found out about my…excursion two days ago." Kurt's voice was urgent and hurried as he attempted to quickly explain his hesitance to his friend, even as another sharp rap sounded on the wood, so hard that it nearly shook in its frame.

"You're going to have to face him sooner or later, anyways. Answer the damn door, Kurt."

"No!"

Johnny huffed, and, with a roll of his eyes, stood to open the door to whatever lay on the other side. Feeling quite the coward (but grateful for Johnny's giving in all the same), Kurt winced as his younger friend turned the knob and slowly pulled the door open.

There was a moment of silence, in which Kurt held his breath and closed his eyes, anticipating Blaine's soft voice asking, 'May I speak to Kurt?', or something akin to that. However, the sound of his estranged boyfriend's voice never reached his ears; instead, there came a few squeals and a slightly masculine shriek that could only belong to Johnny as a group of people stampeded into the room.

"KURT, WHAT'S HAPPENING?" Johnny yelled as Kurt's eyes flew open to see numerous females charging toward him from their positions a few yards away. He had a split second to brace himself before he was encompassed by girls pressing in at all sides, some squealing and fussing, some pushing against each other to get to him.

"What are you doing here?" Kurt addressed the ladies of New Directions as they swarmed him, feeling someone tug at his hair and stopping himself from slapping whomever the hand belonged to. A brief flash of blonde hair whipped across his face, and he recognized the vague scent of Lipsmackers and cat as he smiled fondly, if not confusedly, at the girl that stood squarely in front of him. "Hi, Britt."

The blonde smiled at him and grabbed his hand, even as the teenage girls surrounding him continued to pound against him like Johnny's bed were a stage and their current position a mosh pit. "Hey, Kurt. I don't know why we're here, either."

"Kurt, who are these people?" Johnny's voice sounded from somewhere in front of him, slight horror marring his tone.

"They're- oof!" Kurt exclaimed when someone's knee connected with his lower stomach, dangerously close to his groin. Having had enough of the sea of young ladies, he placed two fingers in his mouth and whistled shrilly.

The effect was instantaneous; several girls yelped and placed their hands over their ears, and Mercedes glared at them from her spot by the door, apparently having not been a part of the group squashing. Curious as to why she seemed to be irritated with them, Kurt turned to look at all of the girls of his former glee club, feeling a twinge in his chest upon seeing all of the familiar faces.

He abruptly turned to face Mercedes, a hand on his hip as he gestured to the girls that formed a semi-circle around him. "Why are they here?"

"Someone told them about you and Blaine having problems," his best friend answered, also placing her hands on her hips and cocking an eyebrow in Rachel's general direction. Kurt spun to face her as the brunette, for once, seemed to be at a loss for words.

"It- I- Finn told me!" Rachel exclaimed, obviously frightened by Kurt's death stare. "And I felt that you might need some support in your time of need!"

"And how the hell did Finn find out?" Kurt asked, exasperated by the fact that his private life couldn't seem to stay...well, private. Reaching up to pinch the bridge of his nose, he shook his head at the ceiling as he looked up and waited for an answer.

Mercedes spoke this time, her voice hesitant for the first time. "Um, hon, that would be my fault," she answered sheepishly, and he whipped his head in her direction as she stepped forward. "He kept on asking why you were being so reclusive and not talking to any of us-"

"Finn used the word 'reclusive'?"

Sighing, Mercedes rolled her eyes. "No. That's not the point, Kurt." She paused and pointed at Rachel, obvious disdain on her face. "Anyways, he kept begging, and I finally caved and told him. And then he must've told Streisand over here."

Kurt nodded in comprehension, everything fitting together in his mind. "Ah. And so this is Rachel's doing," he stated dryly, turning the full force of his glare on the diva once again.

Holding up a hand, Rachel stepped forward guardedly. "While I don't approve of the use of my idol's last name as an insult, I do admit freely to informing the Glee girls of your recent misfortune." Looking at Kurt pleadingly, she waved a hand in the direction of her fellow glee clubbers, her voice suddenly softening. "We just wanted to talk to you about it."

"Well, I really would like some notice next time you plan to ambush me at school. Speaking of," he began, his eyebrows furrowing. "How did you guys get in here? There's a strict rule against girls in the dorms."

Santana stepped forward from behind Quinn and Lauren, holding up the hand that wasn't clasped in Brittany's and smirking at him. "That would be where my talents come in."

"Do I even want to know?" Kurt asked, directing the question at Tina.

The Asian girl shook her head slowly, raising both of her eyebrows. "No, you really don't."

Kurt sighed, closing his eyes momentarily and running his tongue along the inside of his cheek, willing his mind to stop racing with the disturbing possibilities. Allowing himself a breather, he thought of the coming discussion and mentally prepared himself for the rehashing of numerous painful details, before remembering his poor, confused roommate.

He glanced over to the desk, where his friend was currently standing, frozen, a mildly frightened look on his face. "Oh, and please apologize to my roommate for trampling over him."

Seven heads of long hair whipped around to fix on Johnny, whose eyes widened even more so under their stares. Kurt observed with amusement as the freshman's adam's apple bobbed in his throat with an audible gulp, before the younger boy spoke.

"Hello?" Johnny said timidly, his statement actually more of a question and his face still displaying shock.

A voice piped up from Kurt's right, sounding mystified as it inquired, "San, is this Kurt's new midget?"

"No, Britt," Santana replied, looking at the blonde with affection and slight resignation.

Breathing out heavily, Kurt reached up to knead at his temple once more, thinking that this was going to be a long afternoon.

….


"Well shit. We can't even help with this one," Wes was saying as and David walked into their mutual dorm room after an intense round of studying in the library, staring at his phone with a look of disappointment on his face.

"Why?" David asked, shrugging off his messenger bag onto the desk that sat near the entrance and earning a look of exasperation from Wes.

Sighing, the Asian boy threw his bookbag hastily onto the floor and strode up to his friend, shoving his iPhone into the taller boy's face without warning. David rolled his eyes and, grabbing ahold of Wes's wrist, pulled the small screen away from his face, beginning to read Day Nine of The Love Dare:

"'Think of a specific way you'd like to greet your spouse today. Do it with a smile and with enthusiasm. Then determine to change your greeting to reflect your love for them'," he read aloud from the phone, squinting momentarily before fixing his best friend with a look. "You're right. We can't help with this one."

Wes flopped backward onto his twin bed, shaking his head at the ceiling. "This sucks. I really want to, you know, actually aid them, for once. Instead of...well, failing miserably at assisting Kurt with his efforts to get his mancake back."

"Did you really just say 'mancake'?" David asked seriously, cocking an eyebrow at him.

Huffing, Wes rose from his place on the bed and glared at David. "Never mind that, David. We have a bit of a problem!" he exclaimed, punctuating his sentence by throwing himself back onto the comforter.

Rolling his eyes for the second time since entering the room, David walked slowly over to where Wes lay, sprawled across the navy blankets. Appearing to choose his words carefully, he placed a hand on the knee of his best friend. "Listen," he began, and he saw Wes's eyes open, now fixed upon him as he turned his gaze to the floor. "I know that you want to help Kurt out with this really badly; I do, too." Pausing, he watched as Wes slowly sat up and put his chin in his hands, turning to him with a childishly glum expression. "However, Kurt can handle a few dares on his own. In fact," David said with a chuckle, shaking his head, "he can handle all of them. We can lend a hand anyways, but he'll do fine without our pathetic attempts at help for one day."

Wes appeared to absorb that for a moment, and David was visibly grateful for the newfound silence in the room as his best friend stared contemplatively at the bedspread. Tipping his eyes toward the ceiling, David waited out the silence, which he knew would be short-lived, before Wes spoke softly:

"Fine. But there's no way that we're not participating in tomorrow's," he grumbled, kicking at an invisible spot on the carpet. Suddenly, his head snapped up, and his gaze landed on the closed door of their room, an abruptly curious look on his face. "Where is Sebastian?"

…..


"…and that's why Blaine and I haven't been doing so well," Kurt was finishing his explanation to the women of New Directions, at the same time that Wes was twenty yards away and bemoaning his inability to participate in The Love Dare. He looked down at his lap, where he wrung his sweating hands together, as the roomful of teenage girls fell silent from their places on the floor.

The silence continued even as a few shouts sounded from the hall, and Kurt remembered the lacrosse game that had taken place shortly after classes had ended; said game had interrupted the Warblers practice schedule, therefore making it impossible to hold a rehearsal, to the disappointment of many non-athletic members of the glee club. Kurt, however, had found himself relieved at the prospect of being able to avoid Blaine for as long as possible, and had welcomed the cancellation.

On the contrary, he hadn't expected to be forced into relaying an account of his failing love life to a group of his former female glee club members.

Sighing internally, his turned his gaze from his knotted fingers to look at the surrounding girls, seeing the nearly identical expressions of shock and sadness on each of their faces. Kurt gave a start upon seeing Johnny seated between Brittany and Rachel, having forgotten his friend's presence amidst the rehashing of things better left unsaid and the unshed tears that blurred his vision.

He also noticed the odd, analyzing look on Johnny's face, and immediately knew the question behind that look: Of all the things that you just told them, why didn't you mention The Love Dare?

"Kurt, I'm sorry," Brittany finally said, breaking the silence and jolting Kurt out of his thoughts as she reached forward to pat his knee. Looking to Santana, whose face displayed obvious upset at the situation, the blonde bit her lip and loudly whispered, "Will the new one make it better?" She nodded to her right side, where Johnny was seated with a perplexed expression.

Kurt sighed, this time audibly. "Britt, Johnny is just my friend."

"Well, Santana and I used to be just friends, but we still-"

"O-kaaaaay, that's enough," Kurt interrupted her, as the girls around him reached up to cover their ears as if by reflex and Johnny's face became even more befuddled. Sweet mother of all that is good and supposedly holy, he thought, closing his eyes and willing away the repulsive mental images that filled his mind. "I don't want to hear about your pre-relationship, lesbionic sex." He paused, seeing a smirk curl onto Santana's lips, and quickly amended, "Or post-relationship, for that matter."

Kurt observed the way Santana rolled her eyes with a scoff, her face still maintaining a somewhat bitchy expression as she glanced tenderly at Brittany and linked their pinkies. He noted with dim surprise the change in the Latina's demeanor, so unlike her guarded, stiff posture from the year and a half they'd shared together in Glee club; of course, he'd seen Santana and Brittany since his moving to Dalton, but even after they'd gotten together months previously, he hadn't noticed how much she'd really transformed. Not to say that she wasn't still a fierce, sarcastic kind-of-bitch, but, seeing the way she looked at Brittany, Kurt's heart swelled and ached somewhat for he and Blaine to be able to look at each other like that again.

"So," Rachel began, interrupting his thoughts, and he jerked his head up to look at her. "What are you going to do about all of this?"

Bluntness, thy name is Rachel Berry, Kurt thought sardonically, inwardly sighing; leave it to Rachel to get right to the point. However, he knew that there was no way that he could trust so many gossipy girls with the knowledge of what he was doing to regain Blaine's affections, and therefore simply shrugged sadly at the other girl, hoping that his acting abilities would be enough to cover up his lie. "There's not really anything that I could possibly do," he answered, seeing the growing dismay on Rachel's face as Mercedes shot him a knowing look. "I'll just have to give him space and hope that he'll come to his senses."

Johnny was staring at him pointedly, an eyebrow raised, but Kurt ignored his gaze, watching as Rachel's face twisted into a frightening mix of anger and apparent sadness.

"Kurt, this is…this is terrible!" the diva exclaimed, shaking her head back and forth, before sweeping her bangs out of her eyes to stare earnestly at him. "I can't believe you're- you're just…giving up!"

"I'm not 'giving up', Rachel," Kurt countered with a sigh, reaching up to knead at his temple. "I'm being patient."

Rachel stomped her left foot, banging the floor so loudly that a few of the surrounding, morose girls gave a start. "Patience be damned! You need your man back!"

Rolling his eyes, Kurt slapped his palm to his forehead, reminded of why he'd not wanted to talk to anyone about his situation in the first place. Rachel, if you weren't such a good singer, I'd rip your vocal chords from your throat, he thought, watching as said girl continued to rant. He and Mercedes shared a look from across the circle of girls, and she simply shrugged, as if to say, what can you do? He jumped when Rachel stomped once again, her face contorted as she spoke too quickly for anyone to understand, and he suddenly wished that he had locked the door when he'd gotten out of class and come back to the dorm.

It was Santana who finally halted Rachel's tirade a few moments later, standing and putting a hand on her hip in front of the girl, one eyebrow raised as she looked her up and down. Rachel's mild rant tapered off into nothing as Santana stared her down, pursing her lips. Kurt glanced in Johnny's direction as the Latina stepped closer, the boy tensing up and watching with fearful eyes.

"Perdoname, short stack?" Santana questioned, running her tongue along the inside of her cheek. "What the hell is wrong with you? I don't know about the rest of the ladies, but I'm just irritated by your little diatribe. We're here for Kurt no matter what he wants to do, and your pointless gassing is doing nothing. So kindly callate la boca, and sit your ass down."

Rachel's eyes were considerably wide as she stared back at Santana, and Kurt felt his heart swell for both of them. For Rachel, because, no matter how annoying and inescapable her constant nattering was, she really seemed to mean well. For Santana, because, as he watched her give a satisfied nod and take her seat once again, he noticed that change in her again; that change that he'd noticed when she'd looked at Brittany earlier, that slight difference that told him that this bitchy cheerleader who cared for no one but herself had, in fact, evolved into a lethal mix of lover and fighter.

Or maybe the lover part was there all along, he thought fondly, watching as she smiled softly at Brittany after the other girl put a hand on her shoulder.

Mercedes spoke up, then, and he quickly turned his attention back to his friend as she began, "So…we'd probably better get back."

Though he'd previously wished that the girls of his former Glee club had not intruded on his personal affairs, Kurt felt his face fall slightly as he realized how nice it was to see them again. "Going so soon?" he asked, his tone a little more pathetic than he would have liked.

"Well, we're having a Gleepover-" Tina piped up.

"-which is the most idiotic word, ever," Santana interrupted, glancing at her sideways.

Tina cleared her throat, shooting a quick glare in the other girl's direction before continuing, "Anyways, the girls of the club are all staying at Quinn's. We have one of those 'boys against girls' assignments, and we want to win, so we're going to practice there."

Having raised an eyebrow midway through her explanation, Kurt turned to face Mercedes. "You're having it at Quinn's?" he asked with mild disbelief, still able to remember the blonde's slight standoffishness even after nearly a year apart.

Before Mercedes could answer in the affirmative, Quinn spoke up from the other side of Lauren. "Yes, we're having it at my house. Surprised?" the blonde asked, a challenging look on her face, and tossed a glance to Rachel. When Kurt simply shrugged in response, the girl rolled her eyes and crossed her arms over her chest, tossing her hair over her shoulder.

"Well, on that note," Johnny said awkwardly, speaking for the first time since Kurt had finished relaying the details of his failing relationship with Blaine, "I'd better get to the library. I've got to read The Odyssey for English, and Mrs. Jenson isn't supplying the copies."

"Was that the one written by the chubby, yellow guy?" Brittany asked, her brows furrowing. Receiving only a few shakes of the head from various surrounding girls, she shrugged as Johnny only stared in incredulous confusion and Santana muttered to herself in Spanish.

Johnny finally broke the small silence by clearing his throat and standing, giving a small wave to the girls that surrounded him. "I'd best be going, so-" he paused, turning to Kurt, "-um, good luck with that…erm, thing that you have to do."

Nearly rolling his eyes at Johnny's words, Kurt nodded at his friend as he slipped out of the door, leaving it slightly ajar. Be a bit more obvious, Kurt thought, before shaking his head the slightest bit.

Quinn suddenly stood, her white sundress swishing around her knees as she twisted to look at the other girls in the room meaningfully. She bit her lip and looked briefly around herself at Rachel. Flipping her hair over her shoulder and pulling on a light blue cardigan, she raised her eyebrows at her fellow club members, before turning to Kurt with an apologetic look on her face. "We really should be going," she told him, her eyes remorseful. "My mom- she wants us back by seven, and it's a two-hour drive…"

"No, it's completely understandable," Kurt said, dismissing the indirect apology by holding out his palms toward the girl. "You girls go ahead and have your…your 'Gleepover'. Sounds like lots of fun."

Hoping that he'd not sounded bitter as he'd spoken those last words, Kurt watched as Quinn nodded gratefully and the rest of the young women stood. The blonde slowly walked to the door as the other New Directions ladies filed over to bid him farewell with varying degrees of affection. However, Kurt was not offended by the lack of a physical goodbye from the Quinn herself; he knew that she wasn't exactly a very affectionate person, and was therefore contented by the small wave that she supplied as she led the horde of girls from the room.

After receiving a final whispered, "Good luck", from Mercedes, he watched her close the door behind herself, simply staring at the wood for a good twenty seconds before heaving a great sigh.

I didn't realize how much I missed them, he thought, feeling his heart sink in his chest at the awareness of how long he'd gone without really being with his friends from McKinley. Too bad I had to lie to them after going so long without seeing them all, he thought sarcastically, remembering how he'd avoided speaking of The Love Dare whilst discussing Blaine with the girls. However, he knew that that was the only way to keep everyone from meddling, and sighed resignedly as he flopped onto Johnny's bed.

"Pull yourself together, Hummel," he grumbled to himself, even as he felt pressure behind his eyes. Let's keep our eyes on the prize, shall we? "You have too much to worry about, don't add your old friends to the mix."

But, at the same time, Kurt wanted to wallow in self-pity over his lack of contact with the girls of New Directions; not only that, but also mentally go over every agonizing moment of his life and just cry. He wanted to know why he deserved losing his friends over school bullies, a dead mother, having his father nearly die, and having the person who meant most to him in life be unwilling to continue speaking to him. It frustrated him to no end that these things kept piling on, different variations of misery that, he guessed, would eventually crush him.

"Now you're just being overdramatic," Kurt scoffed to himself, though his voice was thick and his eyes were burning with unshed tears, before rolling over onto his stomach. Folding his arms under his face, he shook his head slightly, feeling the rough material of his blazer brushing the smooth skin of his forehead.

He had been lying down in silence for a few moments, only his thoughts keeping him company, when he heard a tentative knock on the door.

Shooting up at the sudden noise, Kurt wondered distractedly as to whom it could be, while simultaneously trying to swipe away the few tears that had fallen moments previously. He stood up, contemplating the odds of it being Blaine with a small frown on his face; after all, the girls had left mere minutes ago, and Johnny was in the library. Who the hell else could it be?

Another knock sounded on the door, and he called, "I'm coming!" Shaking his head, he scolded himself for moving so slowly out of fear, before opening the door to reveal Quinn.

His brow furrowing, Kurt looked the girl up and down, wondering why in the world she was back at Dalton after only having been gone for a few minutes. A small frown of confusion on his face, he tilted his head slightly, noting how out-of-breath she looked; as if she'd sprinted up the three flights of stairs to his room.

"Um, yes?" he asked, his voice betraying his bafflement, and Quinn smiled apologetically at him.

"I'm sorry, Kurt, I know that after that…talk, you probably want to be alone," she said, looking at him as if she were gauging his reaction. "But I forgot my purse."

Kurt nodded in comprehension, finally allowing himself to let out a silent sigh of relief; he kept reminding himself that it was ridiculous to worry about Blaine having found out about his trip to First Church of God (because, really? Anne had given her word that she wouldn't speak of it, and he doubted that the redhead he'd been seated by paid enough attention to him to notice anything worth mentioning), but couldn't help how nervous the thought made him. What if Blaine had seen him, and thought that he was trying to get him back by pretending to convert to Christianity, or something similar? That would not only make him seem desperate, but would most likely offend Blaine as much as the comment Kurt had made weeks before about the similarities between him and his father.

He snapped himself out of his thoughts as he remembered that Quinn was still standing in front of him, a now contemplative and slightly worried expression on her face; presumably a reaction to his zoning out. Clearing his throat loudly, he mustered a tight smile and opened the door more widely, gesturing for her to enter. "Do you remember where you left it?" Kurt asked, and nearly facepalmed upon registering exactly what he'd just said; the room was just shy of the size of a middle-class, American living room, and, as he glanced around, he saw a floral-print bag sitting at the base of the nightstand.

Feeling an odd sensation in his stomach, he felt his eyebrows pulling together as Quinn strode over to the large purse sitting on the ground.

Bending down, she grabbed ahold of the thick faux-leather strap before standing up. Kurt watched as she rifled through a couple of the open outside pockets (for crying out loud, he thought to himself, I didn't take anything!), and accidentally pulled a few loose pieces of scrap paper out of the pocket closest to Kurt.

As the papers fluttered to the floor, Kurt felt another twist in his stomach, and only realized when they landed in front of the nightstand exactly what the cause behind his abdominal response was.

The Love Dare's corner was sticking out from under the bedside table.

He knew that he was too late to stop Quinn as she cursed to herself and, once again, bent over to retrieve her personal belongings from the floor.

Wincing, he braced himself as she froze, holding her squatting position to purse her lips. A few moments passed as she simply sat there, and Kurt knew that her eyes were trained on the part of the title that was clearly visible from where he stood.

Please, just let it be, he pled fiercely in his mind, as if willing the girl to stand up like she hadn't noticed anything, and hoping desperately that she didn't recognize the book; surely not every Christian was familiar with The Love Dare, right?

Wrong, Kurt thought in a semi-panic -though he knew that the statement couldn't be completely true- as he watched Quinn reach for the brown paperback before pulling it out from under its hiding place. He felt his eyes widen as the blonde girl on the floor simply ran her manicured nails over the cover for a moment, staying silent for a moment before speaking.

"Kurt," she muttered softly, and stood slowly. She turned to him, raising the book into the air, her eyes betraying slightly angry confusion. "Kurt, what is this?"

His voice caught in his throat, his mind racing. She's going to tell everyone, and Blaine is going to find out, and this will all have been for nothing, he thought wildly, trying to simultaneously summon the correct lie to easily get him out of the situation. However, what came out instead was, "Please, don't tell anyone."

Quinn quirked an eyebrow, her expression puzzled. "Why?"

"Because I don't want anyone to find-"

"No," she interrupted him with a quick shake of her head. "I mean, why are you doing this?" Punctuating the end of her sentence by nodding at the book in her hand, Quinn fell silent as she waited for an answer.

Kurt found himself tripping over his words in his mind, because no, this isn't happening, she's going to tell everyone. Flying into a state of internal frenzy, he scrambled for an explanation that would seem plausible, before he blurted, "I'm trying to make Blaine fall in love with me again."

Eyes widening, Quinn fell silent, and Kurt mentally kicked himself. Of course he would blow the whole plan to hell right when things were looking up. He began to chew on his lower lip as he took in Quinn's stunned expression. Way to go, Hummel.

"Kurt," she began softly after a few moments of silence, her voice thick with surprise and what sounded like disbelief. "I don't think you understand what you're dealing with." Holding up 'The Love Dare', she took a deep breath. "You can't just do this and not- and not expect to-"

Feeling a twinge of anger, Kurt interrupted her by raising his hand, palm outward. "Not expect to what, exactly?" he asked, voice becoming heated as he was reminded of the previous year, when the blonde had made insensitive, religious remarks while his father had been in the hospital. He was so tired of people treating him like shit, and he felt his growing rage propel him forward. "Expect to become a Christian or something?" he snapped, and then continued before he could stop himself. "Gay people can be Christians, too, you know."

He immediately wanted to shove the words back in; it sounded like something Anne would say. He really didn't mean to let it out, and now she was probably thinking that Kurt was just using 'The Love Dare' because he was some born-again Christian. Damn, I need a Tylenol, he thought, reaching up to rub at his temple.

However, instead of the enthusiastic 'you believe in God, now?' that Kurt was expecting, he heard Quinn make a low noise in her throat. Looking up, he saw that her face was slightly red, her eyes shining slightly. Confused and mildly afraid, he took a step forward, calm this time in his approach. "Quinn…"

"You don't think I know that?" she asked huskily, her hands shaking as she seemed to be fighting to keep composure. "You don't think that I, of all people, know that?"

Perplexed, Kurt felt his eyebrows crease. "And what's that supposed to mean?"

Quinn barked out a harsh, cold laugh. "God, you're just as oblivious as the rest of them," she muttered tremulously, heaving a sigh. She reached up to thread her fingers through her hair, her mouth forming a thin line before she spoke again. "I think you and I both know what it means."

Aside from being shocked at her use of sacrilegious profanity, Kurt could only manage to feel completely mystified. "What are you-" he started, before suddenly halting.

Oh.

Oh.

"I see you understand now," Quinn interrupted his epiphany conversationally, picking lightly at her dress. Unmindful of Kurt's expression of complete astonishment, she continued, "It took me a while to get used to it, too."

He snapped his head up to look at her, vision blurry from how wide his eyes had been open. "But- you're- how?" he asked. Quinn Fabray is actually- actually- I need to sit down, he told himself, and proceeded to do so.

"A year ago." When he didn't respond to this, she took another breath, rolling her eyes. "It was after Sam asked me out. He kissed me- really kissed me- and we started making out for the first time." She paused to collect her thoughts, hollowing out her cheeks. "I- I couldn't understand what was wrong with me. I thought maybe…maybe it had just been Finn and Puck, that I just wasn't attracted to them. I mean, you saw how we interacted- they were just popularity boosts. But, after Sam kissed me, I realized that I didn't like it. I didn't like him kissing me; I had never enjoyed a guy kissing me. And before I could stop myself, I wondered if I was…if I was gay."

"Holy shit," Kurt said in a hushed voice from his place on the bed. He was still completely dumbfounded; after years and years of her being head bitch in charge at McKinley, after a high school career built upon the quintessential Queen Bee cliché- Quinn was finally, really human to him. She suddenly seemed fallible- because for the first time, Quinn was more uncertain of herself than he had ever seen, even during Babygate.

For some reason, it made her seem even stronger.

Quinn was nodding sheepishly, her face finally turning back to its normal color. "Yeah, I know."

A sudden question forming in his mind, Kurt looked up at her. "But…what convinced you? Made you sure?" Even as he asked, the idea was suddenly making an eerie sort of sense; the lack of PDA when she and her few boyfriends hung out in the halls, her loyal commitment to the celibacy club, the fact that she had slept with Puck under the influence of alcohol and momentary insecurity. Hell, even her drawing pornographic pictures of Rachel in the girls' bathroom. It all suddenly seemed logical, and he couldn't believe that no one had ever wondered if Quinn Fabray was really all that she appeared to be.

He was removed from his train of thought when he noticed Quinn blushing furiously, and he cringed internally. "Oh my God, did you hook up with Santana?"

"No!" Quinn exclaimed, her face twisting in apparent horror. "It wasn't…it wasn't Santana that made me realize- that- it was someone else."

"Holy hell," Kurt said, gaping. "Brittany? Because she does have a nice body- for a girl, I mean- but Santana will kill you-"

"Kurt-"

"-or maybe Mercedes? You did live at her house, after all, and she's pretty fabulous-"

"It was Rachel," Quinn offered up quietly, but Kurt remained completely oblivious as he began ticking off names on his hand.

"-let's see, not Tina, you two have barely spoken. Maybe that nice girl on the Cheerios-"

"KURT!" she shouted, grabbing his arm in a more assertive gesture than he'd seen from the girl since her epic bitchfight with Santana.

Looking slightly dazed, he finally turned his gaze back to hers. "What? I'm sorry, I wasn't listening." He noticed that eyeroll that he got in return, the one that seemed to say 'no shit', and he quirked his head. "What were you saying?"

"It was…Rachel," Quinn murmured, looking down and biting her lip.

Kurt frowned slightly. "What was Rachel?"

Heaving an exasperated sigh, Quinn closed her eyes. "She was the one that made me realize that I was…that I was…"

They both fell silent momentarily, and Kurt's mind raced to connect the dots. Pornographic illustrations, the torture, the nicknames, the insults-

"You're in love with Rachel Berry?" Kurt found himself asking, voice devoid of any emotion due to the short-circuiting of his brain. He was sure that he would properly analyze the situation in a few hours. Right now, his head was just beginning to ache.

Quinn swallowed. Picked at a cuticle.

Quinn Fabray is in love with Rachel Berry.

She has got to be screwing with me.

But the look on her face told a different story.

"You're in love with Rachel?" he asked again, softer this time. Compassionate, caring, because oh, wow- she was going to need a lot of it. He remembered the way Rachel had looked at Finn the last time he'd seen them together, and he blanched at the thought of how Quinn must have felt. Bless her heart.

"It's not important," Quinn answered. Kurt's heart seized up as he saw that she was avoiding his eyes. "What's important-" she began, and Kurt noticed that she was still gripping the paperback guide to his repossession of Blaine's heart. "- is that you need to understand that this isn't a joke, Kurt. We don't need to talk about me anymore."

Though he knew that she was just changing to subject to evade his attempts to discuss Rachel, he allowed her this one pass. "Quinn, I know that it's not a joke. It's my only chance of getting Blaine back. I would never treat it like that."

"I know, Kurt, but I am talking about the religious aspect. As far as I know, unless you've suddenly taken a literal leap of faith, you're still an atheist." She stops for a moment, seeming to gather her thoughts. "And I'm not even saying that you shouldn't be doing it because of that. I'm saying that…that you can't just half-ass your way through this."

Kurt stiffened. "With all due respect, Quinn, I don't think you know anything about my efforts-"

"No, Kurt, that's not what I mean. I mean that you can't just skip all of the spiritual stuff and go straight to the wooing. It doesn't work like that."

"We have been over this," Kurt began tiredly. "I don't even believe in God, Quinn."

Quinn nodded. "I know that. It's just that you need to go through with it- the whole thing- if you want to make a difference. Just because you don't believe in God doesn't mean that you couldn't learn from the experience. I mean-" she laughed lightly "- look at how much I've changed from being around you and Santana and Britt. I wasn't even worried about reconciling my faith with my sexuality by the time I realized that I was gay. Because you showed me that everything isn't just black and white."

He considered that for a moment. Really considered it. Quinn did have a point. Even though he knew that he wasn't going to be sold on the whole Jesus thing, he admitted that it could be good for him to gain a new respect for Christianity. Kurt had grown a lot since being the shaking boy beside his father's hospital bed. And, though he was solid in his beliefs, he figured that Quinn was raising another point by saying that he should do the whole thing; if he were to pick and choose which dares he actually wanted to do, he already wouldn't have done half of them.

"Okay," Kurt conceded, nodding. "I'll do the whole thing."

Quinn smiled. "Good. I swear that I am not trying to convert you- I'm not that girl anymore."

Kurt laughed at her choice of words. "Oh, Quinn," he began, smiling, "I thought that it was against the Bible to swear?"

So, how was it?

Once again, I'm a bit rusty. With this story, first of all, but also with past-tense. I've been writing present-tense for the last eleven months. If you knew how many times I accidentally switched tenses while writing this, you'd probably call me an idiot.

I hope you enjoyed the abundance of Quinn. I've come to ship Faberry VERY hard, and, though it most likely won't become canon in this story, I enjoy the one-sided angst quite a bit. Also, I'm pretty sure that after "On My Way" and all of the delicious subtext this season, we're all pretty convinced that Quinn is 100% gay.

Also, another side note: if anyone would like to find me on Tumblr, just message me; I'm not comfortable with posting it due to the fact that some family members have access to this website.

So yeah. I told you guys that I wouldn't give up on this story. And it took a while, but I'm finally back. Buckle in, kids.