It had been a few weeks since Karofsky's 'visit' and things hadn't considerably gotten better for Kurt.
After the initial wave of energy and the rush of happiness when he'd gotten out of the hospital, loved and helped by his friends and family, things, especially his nightmares, had gotten worse.
The dream he'd had that specific night –which Kurt, of course, remembered perfectly— was mellow compared to some of the things he had to suffer through in the weeks that followed.
Kurt didn't think they'd ever been so horrifying.
He woke up in cold sweat every time, sometimes screaming so hard he couldn't sing for days. Realistic ones alternated with dreams so abstract he couldn't even put his finger on why they terrified him so much except for the horror he felt. He'd jump and nearly wet himself when there was a mere shadow he hadn't noticed and even the ones he did expect there to be were making him skittish.

He'd always managed; worked with his… he guessed he could call it a disability. He worked fine with a few hours lack of sleep. He never let anyone notice, but this was just too much.

And it wasn't just the dreams -though they were the main cause— because due to the lack of sleep, Kurt's grades were starting to drop, too.
Normally, grades were no problem at all for the intelligent, witty boy. He tackled most of his subjects effortlessly. He'd always been intelligent; got it from his mother, Burt would say.
But courses at Dalton Academy were considerably harder then at McKinley and the people were a lot more attentive.

Last week, he'd gotten into a fight with Blaine, because he –of course— refused to tell him what was 'wrong' with him, why he had bruises beneath his eyes or why he was so tired all the time.

What should he tell him?
"It's nothing, I've just been having these bed-wetting-scary nightmares since I was eight and they've kind of gotten worse since I came here, no big deal. I just tend to stay awake for days, get scared of the silliest things and forget dinner-dates, 's all!"

Nobody ever noticed at McKinley, except for Mercedes, who never talked about it because Kurt didn't want to.
Blaine, however, was an entirely different matter; he was severely unimpressed with Kurt's backtalking and immediately knew when Kurt was trying to distract him from a subject he wanted to avoid.
He was very understanding, but not very appreciative of Kurt 'not trusting him' as he would phrase it.
The thing was that Kurt did trust him, too much to risk loosing him over his secret.

And Kurt, as a severely sensitive being, couldn't really handle the fight and hadn't been able to concentrate at all, resulting in even worse grades.
He'd gotten a B-minus, a B-minus!, in French, a C in biology, because he messed up his and Blaine's experiment and another C-minus in literature, because he'd forgotten to re-read the Shakespeare plays and couldn't even remember lady Capulet's maiden name!
The list went on and on and on.

It was frustrating and Kurt was tired of it.

He was tired all the damn time, but still.

"I'm your friend, Kurt; you should tell me if something is going on! Don't you trust me?"

Kurt buried his head in his hands, sighing deep. Blaine couldn't know. His pride wouldn't let him tell him. The concern would be so, so nice, but he didn't want the empathy.
It was bad enough that Karofsky knew!

And his family, especially Finn, wasn't really impressed nor worried by the bad marks and they, especially Carole, kept watching him like hawks. Pampering him, keeping him from his studying and generally taking care of him, whenever it seemed Kurt felt bad.
There wasn't much they could do though and more often then not, it just irritated Kurt. He appreciated their effort from the Hudson's though.

He absolutely hated being irritated by them, because he loved them to much to be angry at them or sulk in peace.

Burt had lived with the Kurt and his nightmares longer and, at least, was accustomed to letting Kurt take care of himself. Kurt was the one who knew what was going on, to Burt's opinion, so he was the one that knew what was best for himself.
But lately, he seemed to have lost trust in his son's capability of looking after himself.

It hadn't been exactly pleasant when Burt had caught him watching the sound of music in the depths of night.

"You can't go on like this Kurt, it's unhealthy! Even you, yourself, say it's starting to get bad. Don't make me force sleep on ya, kid."

But his father didn't know; he didn't know just how scared Kurt was of his nightmares.
Nobody knew, nobody understood, nobody ever would…

Kurt rose from his place on the edge of the Dalton-fountain when he saw Blaine approach.

"Blaine, please, I'm sorry…"

Blaine looked at him with the saddest eyes Kurt had ever seen, but the elder boy merely shook his head and brushed past him, his fingers reaching out to squeeze Kurt's hand for two mere little seconds, almost making Kurt sob.

"I hate it when people don't trust me, Kurt, especially the ones I have dear to my heart. I know this is difficult for you, but it is for me too. I hate to see you suffer, but I can't help you if you don't let me; we can't be friends like this if you don't trust me!"

Kurt swallowed loudly, his fingers reaching after Blaine uselessly and standing frozen as the school emptied around him, the students going home, back to their dorms or do whatever else kids did nowadays.

Would Blaine understand? Would he understand the terror Kurt felt when they threw him in a dumpster; an endless dumpster with razor-sharp blades and snapping teeth, a dumpster that got smaller and smaller, cutting him, bruising him at every chance they got? Would he get his fear of that never ending darkness, filled with flashes of cold laughter?

Somehow, Kurt didn't think so.
Even the man from the graveyard hadn't turned up in his nightmares to soothe him anymore.

"There's no prince on the white horse, Kurt, just pricks in white Cadillac's."

Oh, how he missed Mercedes and the way she always knew perfectly what to say to him.

"I think it is because Kurt doesn't scrub the fireplace, so he doesn't have a fairy-godmother to help him find one."

And Brittany, whose comments, however blunt, showed how much she cared. He would stare at her plushie-gift for hours sometimes, just looking.

"I don't think princes are very attracted to girls, or boys, that scrub fireplaces."

Even Rachel still came along often, even now that she was convinced his recovery was complete. She said it was because he was the only one that could truly appreciate her voice and technique, but he suspected she just genuinely liked him.

"So you scrub fireplaces? How does that work?"

He smiled, Tina had come along too. It was so sweet of her to come, even though she was terribly shy.

His feet started moving, towards the parking lot, where he send a small smile to Finn, who was once again faithfully waiting for him.
His car was still in scraps, because Burt had been too busy with customers to deal with his car.

The little act of kindness when Finn would pick him up whenever he could find time did wonders for Kurt's mood and he send a silent 'thank you' to the universe for the amazing friends and family it gave him.

He send a glance back at the massive school-building when he buckled himself in and couldn't help but wonder; what did it hold for him without Blaine? What was this school to him except for a hiding place? What was it to him now that Karofsky actually seemed civil?

-~~-SCENE CHANGE-~~-

"Kurt?" Burt's voice was a little strained as he watched the light of the TV flicker over his son's pale complexion, the remote hanging limply in his hand, the other one sipping yet another cappuccino while his eyes stared unblinkingly at the screen.
He usually left Kurt alone when it came to his… condition, because Kurt usually managed just right, but lately he had been worrying more and more about his only son.
The kid was right; he'd passed out before, but never quite like he had a few weeks ago, it was worrying Burt endlessly.

He watched as Kurt's head tiredly turned towards him.

"Maybe you should go to bed," he offered gently, "you look very tired."

"I am very tired," came the half-joking reply.

Burt approached the couch and sat down beside Kurt like the boy was made of porcelain, just looking at him for a few seconds before he spoke the thoughts that had been passing through his head for quite some time now.

"It's getting worse, isn't it?"

He wasn't surprised to see Kurt frown slightly, scrunching up his nose exactly the way his mother always did.

"Yes," he replied sourly, pulling his legs up to wrap his arms around them.

Burt simply kept looking at his son, a silent invitation to keep talking.

"It's always been bad," he mumbled against his knees, "but manageable, you know? But lately, it's just been plain awful. I am honestly afraid to go to sleep now, because it's not just unpleasant anymore…"

Burt felt honestly powerless, as he stretched his arm to wrap to around Kurt's shoulders, feeling him sag against his father.

"How long did you used to go without sleep?" it was such a weird question to ask from his son. His child.
But he'd long since accepted the fact that Kurt had troubles with his sleep, like he had with the fact that Kurt was gay, even if he felt uncomfortable talking about his insomnia.

"A day, sometimes two," Kurt said softly, as if he already knew what his father was going to ask next.

"And recently?"

Kurt sighed and mumbled something under his breath, glancing at Burt's unconvinced face before he decided on 'four days now'.

"Kurt…" The mechanic sighed; racing his mind for what the doctors always said was healthy.
36 hours? 48?

"Don't start, Dad, you don't know what it's like."

His words were mumbled into Burt's shoulder, but his father's ears were so used to the sound of Kurt's voice that he heard every word perfectly clear.
He waited for Kurt to start talking again.

After a few minutes, Kurt swallowed deeply and snuggled deeper into his father's embrace.

"Every time I fall asleep, I dream the most horrible things; you can't even imagine. I can't believe I can imagine. Things that hurt me, on the mentally or physically, it doesn't even matter; there's never a mark on me when I wake up, except for the occasional bruise when I hit myself, trashing. They hurt me with their words or with their images, they hurt my friends and my family and I can't do a thing about it."

Burt just held Kurt while he talked, as the load of words fell from Kurt's lips like a waterfall.

"Once, I dreamed I was at a graveyard, or rather, at a grave. One single grave. I thought it was mom's and I felt so lonely. I was the only one there, save for the headstone…" He took a deep breath, "It turned out the grave was mine and they dragged me into it, through the mud, like a worthless ragdoll."

Burt's face turned into a mask of horror for just a few seconds before he pulled his son even tighter against him.

"Or when I dreamed I stood atop a skyscraper, surrounded by the whole glee-club. I stood there in nothing but worn Pepe Jeans and a ripped Armani shirt, freezing while they chanted for me to just jump, because no-one wanted me around anyway."

"They would nev—"

"I know that, dad, I know that now. But when I'm asleep, it's all so real. I can't not believe it. Everywhere I go, I see memories and everywhere I go, I run into walls that I just can't break down! I'm trapped inside them like a rat and I never wake up until it's over…"

Suddenly Kurt pulled away from him, standing up and walking to the window of the living room, staring blankly through it as if he'd forgotten his father was even there and instead he was talking to the moon.

"But it's never over; they always keep coming back, like the endless hallways full of crying, dying children. Like the endless shadows that keep covering me when I'm trying to reach the light. Like the grey room with no doors, no windows no anything, just a prison of grey. It's endless."

Tears ran freely over his face now and Burt saw he finally reached his limit. He was tired, he was sick, he was haunted.

"It will never stop!" Kurt hissed through clenched teeth, softly sobbing misfortune at the stars as he crumpled to the ground, his hands pressed to his face to hide it. He was trying to hold back even now, attempting to hold up the shields he'd build around him.

Burt stood up and crouched besides him, wrapping his arms around his son again, pulling him tightly against him.

'I can't take this anymore, I can't take them… I can't' his sobs seemed to say.

'I know,' Burt's soft, comforting rubs over his arms said back, 'you're so brave, Kurt, you've been so strong'.

Because sometimes, words weren't needed between father and son, just like Kurt would sometimes chatter endlessly on about something, they could be silent together as well, understanding each other like they did when they mourned over her, when comforted each other.

Maybe it wasn't so much the parental bond, the love between father and son, but rather a bond between two people that had went through a lot together and got each other through.

And now, while Kurt's fingers clutched painfully at the mechanic's shirt, digging his short, razor-sharp nails into his skin, Burt simply didn't really care, because he'd do anything to protect Kurt, to help him, even if this was the only thing he could do.

"Just make it stop, please dad."

How he wished he could. He had wished for a cure since the very beginning.

"I don't know how," he admitted and felt tears of his own fall down his cheeks as he cradled Kurt's body in his arms.

When he looked down, the boy's eyes were closed.

-~~~ To be continued ~~~-

Yes, it's a filler, yes, it's late, yes, I suck and yes, you are allowed to tell me so in a review.
Or not, no pressure, but I'll try to squeeze out a new chapter sooner. I've actually planned ahead this time, so I know roughly what's going to happen.

Then again, I'm not really good with planning, so if this story decides to make decisions for itself, I'm not to blame.

Maybe just a little… *goes into hiding*

*peeps up* and yes, there WILL be more Karofsky soon, promise!
Even though Born this way made me realise actually how OOC he's become in this particular story… Do you guys want me to fix that? (which roughly means; mean, troubled, canon-Karofsky or kind of nice, realised-the-errors-of-his-ways-Karofsky? Or a mix of both?)