SO. Because I absolutely love love love Reed and Shane, I had this in my head all day (Dwight too though! I know we all want to hug him so bad). I'm sure whatever CP Coulter comes out with will be infinitely better, but here's my version of what comes directly after the last scene of Chapter 19 "Paint".

I don't own Glee or the OC's or the first scene, CP is just being ever so kind to let me write about them! Her fic is downright amazing, and if you haven't been bugged enough already, I hope I help get you to read it :) I feel like her characters need their own character slots :/

Also, this is my first foray into writing a fic in a long time so I would appreciate any words on how it turned out.

To all my fellow Rane-bows, enjoy!

Kurt let Shane into their sunlit room. From the window, Pavarotti chirped a small, questioning greeting at the newcomer. Reed was on his bed, having slept in—so emotionally drained that nothing woke him. He had cleaned the paint from his hands, and looked silent and serene, sunbeams resting just right on his strawberry curls. The tear streaks had dried. He was the most peaceful, awkward boy in the world, or so it seemed at that moment.

Blaine helped Shane to the side of the bed.

There, Shane knelt down, took Reed's hand in his and laid his chin on the bed, just watching with his green-gray eyes and letting Reed sleep as he stared.

He stared as though he would never see enough.

And then, a stir, a flutter of eyelashes in the sun.

Shane smiled softly. "…hi."

Reed awoke, head turning and eyes opening all at once in a suddenness that came from the unnatural knowledge that someone was watching him. His attention immediately came to rest on a boy's face, smiling at him tenderly.


He shot up from his laying down position, eyes wide, face pale, and suddenly completely awake.

"Shane?" the boy asked, in a strangled tone.

The boy in question - the boy who shouldn't be here - straightened up from where he kneeled next to the bed. He just smiled wider. "Hey," he said simply, squeezing his hand. Reed looked down in surprise, having not noticed yet that Shane was holding it. He closed his fingers around the other boy's.

Reed looked up at him, drinking him in. He didn't want this image to ever go away. The brief silence resonated around them and Reed wasn't aware of anyone else in the room, he was only aware of Shane in front him, alive, and eyes twinkling.

His eyes combed over the bandages, the uncomfortableness of which he himself was all too familiar with. Even with his marred appearance, Shane had never looked more beautiful. Reed's completed painting could never compare.

"Y-You're alive," he breathed, "You're Ok. You're here."

Shane nodded and just like that he had an armful of Reed, practically crushing him, eyes shut tight against the tears forming. Both Blaine and Kurt gave dismayed admonitions but Shane, used to Reed's clumsiness, and despite his own currently wobbly frame, was able to keep them both upright, Reed in an awkward position half sitting on the bed, half leaning over too far into Shane.

Shane himself looked startled, but happy, holding Reed just as tightly, reminiscent of the New Year's party.

"I wish you'd stop making me cry," Reed mumbled, sniffling.

"I'm sorry." And he sounded it.

"We all thought we'd lost you. I thought…."

He trailed off, unable to finish for fear of sobbing. But there was no reason to dwell now, because Shane was here now.

Shane pulled back first, still holding onto Reed's arms, as he seemed reluctant to let go. He gave him yet another dazzling smile. "Didn't know you'd miss me that much," he teased lightly. Reed bit his lip.

"Shane-" he started, but the brunette cut him off.

"Sorry, that wasn't right to say. I know you're rather emotional and I know we're just friends...Actually, about that."

Shane stood up a little wobbly, allowing for Reed to get off the bed and stand next to him. Blaine wanted to run over and help hold his brother up but sensed this was turning into more of a private moment. Kurt too noticed this and with a reassuring smile at his boyfriend grabbed his hand and led him quietly out of the room.

"I still love you," Shane started seriously, eyes staring determinedly into Reed's, "and I'm not willing to give up on you yet. I know I'm a bit much, and I know I've apologized before...I just really want to do this the right way. If, by chance, you feel differently than you did back in New York-"

He didn't get to finish as Reed, in a very un-Reed like manor, fisted his shirt in his hand and with a blazing look pulled Shane in for a kiss. It was deep and sweet, and a few seconds after he initiated it, Reed pulled back, red faced but looking rather pleased with himself. Shane, meanwhile, had the largest goofy grin one could imagine plastered across his features.

Slightly dazed, he said, "You gotta make me another painting. I uh, kinda lost the one you gave me in the mountains and when the rescue party gave it back it was a little messed up."

"You brought my painting with you on a mountain climbing trip?" Reed asked incredulously.

Shane wrinkled up his nose. "I liked having a piece of you near me."

Reed's face softened instantly. "I've got a finished one!" He said brightly, hurrying over to where it lay.

"The other one wasn't finished?"

"I only finished one when I figured out the next time I saw you I was going to tell you...well tell you that I did want to give you a chance. And that I really, really like you." He looked up at the taller boy. "I can't call it love yet, but…."

Shane reached out and squeezed his hand. "That's good enough for me for now."

Reed pulled him in closer yet again and smiled. "Here," he said, holding out the portrait with his other hand. Shane looked at it a minute before shaking his head fondly. "You really are talented." He nudged it back to Reed, who looked at him, confused.

"That one's yours. I want one of you."

"But then I have to paint myself!"

"Well you can't expect me to do it. My expertise lies in dance." He winked. "Besides, I want to be able to look at you when I'm off in Colorado."

Reed flushed. "….I suppose I can try a self portrait."

"Good. Now come on, let's go give my brother and Kurt a run for their money for the cutest couple."

He went to pull him to the door (despite Reed's lack of appropriate day wear) but Reed stayed where he was, fingers falling loose as Shane tugged. He looked back, questioning.

"Can't we just...stay here alone for a while?" he pleaded. "It's so crowded and dangerous out there."

"Blaine's still a little on edge from the whole ordeal. I think he wants to keep an eye on me," Shane responded. He wrapped his arms around Reed's waist, kissing his forehead. "But yeah, we can stay for a bit." He gave Reed a soft smile, one that practically melted his heart. Pavarotti twittered happily by the window.

"Good," said Reed softly, "I like it here." And while they just stood there, holding each other, they both knew he didn't mean the room.