Disclaimer: Glee belongs to Ryan Murphy and Fox, not me.
Written for a fill on the Glee Fluff Meme: "Five times Finn carried [Kurt] when Kurt didn't want him to, and one time Kurt held his arms up and waited for Finn to carry him."
Part I: Pre-Series
Finn jogged through the parking lot, his backpack bouncing on his shoulders. He was running late, and the bell was about to ring for homeroom. It was still the first week of school, and he had hoped that he could at least get to September before getting a tardy on his record.
He loped past one of the big green dumpsters and halted dead in his tracks. The thing was rattling like there was something trapped inside.
Stay cool, Finn, he told himself. Stay cool. Years of zombie movies have prepared you for this day.
He inched a little closer. The heavy metal lid rattled, clanging on its hinges. Cautiously he slid his backpack down his arm, preparing to strike, and in one quick move he hefted the lid up and back.
"Oh my god!" a high pitched voice gasped.
Unfortunately, he didn't have time to register that the creature trapped in the dumpster was not, in fact, one of the living dead groaning for his delicious brains. So before he could stop himself he slung his heavy backpack around, clocking the kid in the face and sending him tumbling back into the dumpster.
Finn blinked, his brain slowly catching up as his adrenaline spike dropped. "Uh...sorry," he stammered. "Are, uh, are you okay?"
"You hit me in the face!"
"I'm sorry!" Finn protested. "You need any help?"
"If by help you mean a professional dry cleaner and a shiatsu massage, then yes."
Finn frowned into the dumpster. "You don't have to swear at me," he objected. He stepped up to the curb and stared into the dark, vile-smelling depths. The dumpster was mostly empty, but he could see a boy, smaller and probably younger than him, sprawled out on the bottom. "Seriously, dude, you need a hand?"
The boy heaved a heavy sigh. "Well, I would appreciate it if you could help me out of here," he said.
Finn stretched his hand over the side. The boy got up slowly, wincing a little as he straightened. He was just tall enough to see over the side of the dumpster, and he glanced around helplessly for a way to get out, his blue-green eyes catching the early morning sunlight.
"If you can get up to the side, I can get you over," Finn suggested.
The boy sighed again. "This is humiliating," he mumbled. He hitched one leg over the side; Finn found himself slightly surprised that a kid that short could reach so high. The boy pushed himself up, straddling the side, and swung his other leg around to sit on the edge.
"Here, I got you," Finn offered. He reached up, tucking his hands under the smaller boy's armpits, and lifted him off the side of the dumpster. It was pretty easy to carry him; he wasn't all that tall and he was sort of on the thin side. He didn't seem all that happy about being lifted out of the dumpster and carried off the curb.
Finn set the boy carefully on his feet. "Thank you," he said briskly, brushing dumpster debris off his cobalt blue jacket.
Finn recognized him with a sudden guilty twist of his stomach. He didn't know his name, but he knew this was one of the favorite targets for the McKinley jocks, since he was so little and easy to throw and...well, he was kind of gay. Finn shifted his weight uneasily.
"I've adjusted to the dumpster tosses, but I would really prefer that they don't close the lid next time," the kid was saying. "And I never thought I'd say this, but I prefer getting tossed when it's full. At least the bags piled on the outside can be used as a ladder."
Finn watched the kid clean himself off and straighten his hair. He looked sort of pale, except for the rising red mark on his cheek. "You're sure you're okay?" he asked. "I can take you to the nurse or something."
The boy waved him off. "I keep Tylenol in my locker," he said dismissively. He picked up a leather messenger bag discarded on the ground, his lips pulling down at the sight of an fresh ugly scuff across the surface. "Thank you, though. For the offer, and for getting me out of there."
"No problem," Finn said. Impulsively he stuck out his hand. "I'm Finn Hudson, by the way."
The kid almost smiled at that, his eyes flicking from Finn's outstretched hand to his face. He seemed almost surprised, although about what, Finn wasn't sure. "Kurt Hummel," he said, placing his hand gingerly in Finn's.
Finn shook his hand. Kurt's skin was soft, even softer than Quinn's, but his fingers were strong and slender. "Nice to meet you," Finn said.
Kurt shouldered his bag. "This has been fantastic, but I'd better run before I'm late," he said.
Finn blinked as Kurt headed towards the south doors. "Oh, crap," he said, fumbling in his backpack for his schedule, already crumpled somewhere on the bottom "Where's my homeroom?"
The first warning bell rang and Finn groaned loudly. Crap. He was definitely going to miss homeroom. Might as well start walking to first period now.
Part II: The Rhodes Not Taken
"Dude, what are you smoking?" Finn argued. "MarioKart for the Wii is like, the best thing ever."
"That is blasphemy," Puck retorted. "The only MarioKart that's any good is the NES version. Rocking it old school."
"But the Wii controllers are so much cooler," Finn protested. "It's easier to drift and stuff."
"Yeah, well, you're just pissed because you've never been able to beat me at Rainbow Road on NES," Puck grinned. Finn rolled his eyes. "Every time you try, you just-" Puck broke off midsentence. "Whoa. What's wrong with Hummel?"
"He looks like he got hit by a truck," Finn said.
Kurt staggered down the hallway, his gray suit horribly rumpled and his messenger bag sliding down his shoulder. His face was flushed pink, and his blue-green eyes were bleary. Finn frowned. It didn't really seem like Kurt.
Puck elbowed him. "Dude, he's drunk!" he snickered. "Never thought he'd pull something like showing up drunk to school. He's usually the most innocent good boy stereotype like, ever."
Finn's frown deepened. "You think he's okay?" he asked.
"Well, probably, but…oh, crap, dude, he's going to hurl."
"Are you serious? Maybe we should-"
Kurt doubled over and threw up all over Miss Pillsbury's shoes.
The other students in their vicinity jumped out of the way, voicing their disgust. Kurt slumped against the lockers, still dazed. Miss Pillsbury just stared blankly. "Miss Pillsbury, y'okay?" Finn ventured. "Miss Pillsbury?"
"I think she's going into shock, man," Puck said.
Kurt moaned. Finn gingerly placed his hand on his back and tried to get him to look him in the eye. "Kurt? You all right, buddy?" he asked.
"He smells like alcohol," Puck said. "And really nasty flowers."
Kurt tried to point at Puck, flinging his arm in his general direction. "Not flowers," he said, his eyes bleary. "Chablis."
Puck wrinkled his nose. "What?"
"Uh-oh," Finn said. He'd seen Kurt walking around with a thermos that looked suspiciously like April's, but he had never put two and two together and figured out that Kurt was drinking. Now Kurt was drooping against the lockers with his eyes glazed over and his mouth slack. "Geez. Okay, Puck, you help Miss Pillsbury. I'm going to take Kurt to the nurse's office."
"No, no, not there," Miss Pillsbury said, her eyes still as round as dinner plates. "Take him to the choir room and call his dad to come pick him up. I don't want him to get in trouble."
"Trouble for what?" Kurt drawled, clearly unaware of his inebriated state.
Finn sighed and crouched down, wrapping his arms around Kurt's knees. "Okay, Kurt," he said, straightening slowly. "If you blow chunks down the back of my pants, I swear I'm going to drop you."
Kurt draped over his shoulder, his head resting against his back. Finn made his way carefully down the hall, trying not to shake him too much. The last thing he needed was Kurt throwing up again. "Put me down, I…I walk," Kurt mumbled.
"No, you can't," Finn said, shifting him over his shoulder.
Kurt sighed, nestling his cheek between Finn's shoulder blades. "Well, this is nice," he said. Finn rolled his eyes.
He carried Kurt into the choir room; the impromptu jam session screeched to a halt as the other glee club members stared at them. "So guess who hurled all over Miss Pillsbury's shoes in the hallway?" he said cheerfully.
Mercedes stomped over to them to stare Kurt in the eyes. "You did what, white boy?" she demanded.
"Why're you upside down?" Kurt whined.
Finn carried him over the to the risers and set him down carefully, making him lie down on his back. Kurt blinked sleepily at the ceiling. Quinn sat down beside him and stroked his forehead gently. "What happened?" she asked.
"He said something about Bambi and then upchucked all over the hall," Finn explained.
Kurt planted his hands on the riser and pushed himself up into a sitting position. "They killed Bambi's mother," he explained. His lips wobbled and his eyes squinched up. "The hunters…they killed his mom and then he was all sad and…and motherless.."
Finn shifted his weight awkwardly. Kurt looked like he was about to cry, and he wasn't sure he could deal with that. "Is he crying?"
He decided to leave before Kurt started crying. Or throwing up again. Because that was pretty gross.
Part III: Funk
"Guys," Mr. Schue called over their chatter. "Guys, look, I know you're excited, and I'm thrilled to see you guys excited after you've been in a funk for so long, but we've got to work on this number if we're going to be ready to show it off to Vocal Adrenaline." The New Directions kids lowered their volume to a dull roar as Mr. Schue surveyed them with a grin. "Now, who wants to have the opening solo for the song?"
Finn raised his hand. "I think Artie can do it, Mr. Schue," he offered. "I mean, it's a really low part and stuff, and he could pull it off."
"Hey, what about me?" Puck challenged. "I could do it."
The room roared back to life as the glee club quickly started babbling about Puck versus Artie. Kurt raised his hand high, wiggling his fingers. "Mr. Schue, if I may," he said.
"What is it, Kurt?" Mr. Schue asked absently as he studied the sheet music. "Can you think of someone besides Artie or Puck?"
All heads swiveled to stare at Kurt, Finn included. "Wait, you're joking, right?" Finn said. "This is the irony thing you were trying to teach me about."
"No, I can do it," Kurt insisted. "May I try?"
Mr. Schue glanced at the sheet music, then back at Kurt. "Sure, why not?" he said. He beckoned to him. "Hop on up and give it a try."
The group gathered round the piano as Kurt took the soloist's spot beside Brad. Santana snickered. Rachel leaned over to Finn. "There's no way Kurt can reach those notes," she whispered in his ear. "I mean, he has a lovely well-developed upper register, but that's where his strength is, not in the lower half of his range."
Finn nodded, pretending to understand what she had just said.
Brad started into the piano intro, and Kurt tapped his foot slightly to the beat as he counted himself in. And then he launched into the opening solo of the "Funk" number in the deepest voice Finn had ever heard come out of Kurt's mouth.
Rachel's eyes widened. Puck's jaw dropped. Brittany looked around in search of the real singer. Kurt just grinned smugly as he rumbled through the solo.
There was a moment of stunned silence when he finished. Then the room exploded.
"Oh my god!" Tina shrieked.
"Dude, that was freaky!" Puck said. "But kinda awesome at the same time!"
"B-but that can't be possible!" Rachel stammered.
Kurt brushed his hair off his forehead. "I'm a man of many skills, Rachel Berry," he said.
"Dude!" Finn exclaimed. He grabbed Kurt around his waist and hoisted him up. "Dude, that was so cool!"
"Put me down!" Kurt said, kicking at Finn's shins. Finn laughed, holding him easily above the ground. "Put me down, Finn Hudson, before I get a nosebleed from the altitude change!"
"Guys, I think we have our soloist," Mr. Schue said.
Artie raised his hands in surrender. "Kurt, you've got skills," he said.
"Thank you, thank you, I appreciate it, but can someone please make Hudson put me down?" Kurt said, squirming in Finn's grasp.
"Just tryin' to show you a little love, dude," Finn grinned, but he set Kurt carefully on his feet.
Kurt tugged on the hem of his rumpled cardigan. "Thank you," he said primly.
Then Brittany ran up and punched him in the stomach.
Finn caught Kurt as he doubled over. "What was that for?" Kurt wheezed.
"Well, some people say that when you can't talk, you have a frog in your throat," Brittany explained. "It sounded like you swallowed it. I was trying to get it out."
"Thanks for trying, Britty boo, but that was so not helpful," Kurt gasped. Finn laughed and patted him on the shoulder.
Part IV: Grilled Cheesus
Finn fiddled anxiously with his pen. He didn't pay attention in history class during the best of times, but considering that all he could think about at the moment was whether or not his almost-stepfather was going to come out of his coma, he was pretty far gone.
He glanced over his shoulder surreptitiously at Kurt. Usually Kurt was the first one to get to class and take a seat in the front row, but lately he'd been straggling in later and later, settling for seats in the back. And usually he took perfect notes in his color-coded spiral notebooks, but the notebook on Kurt's desk was still closed, the capped pen lying beside it. Kurt rested his chin on his hand, staring at the world map pinned to the gray wall. He looked pale, and his half-closed eyes were ringed in dark shadows.
Finn swallowed hard and turned back towards the notes on the whiteboard. This was hard enough for him, but he couldn't imagine how hard this was for Kurt. He didn't even have his mother at home to take care of him. He was alone.
At least his mom had finally talked Kurt into staying with them, instead of being alone in his empty house. But even that wasn't enough. Kurt stayed at the hospital after school every day, staying until it was past ten, then drove to the Hudson house where he sat on the couch with his homework spread across the coffee table. He went to bed after Finn did and was always up before him. Sometimes Finn wondered if he even slept at all.
"Mr. Hummel, are you paying attention?" the teacher asked.
Like everyone else in his class, Finn turned to stare. Kurt's head was down on his folded arms, resting on his closed notebook; his eyes were closed and his pale lips were parted. He was asleep.
Finn felt a sudden guilty pang shoot through his heart, and he raised his hand before he could stop himself.
"Uh, Mrs. Bedford, I think he's sick," he blurted out. "I can take him to the nurse's office."
The teacher eyed him warily. "All right, but come straight back," she said, turning back to the board to continue lecturing.
Finn slipped out of his chair and knelt beside Kurt's desk. "Hey," he whispered, putting his hand on his back and shaking him lightly. "Kurt, wake up."
Kurt opened his eyes slowly, his pupils dilated and the irises shining a dull, foggy green. "Huh?" he mumbled.
"You fell asleep," Finn whispered, prying the notebook away from his folded arms and sliding it into Kurt's messenger bag. "I'm gonna take you to the nurse's office so you can rest."
Kurt frowned but offered no resistance, unfolding himself slowly and wobbling to his feet. Finn slung Kurt's bag over his shoulder and gripped his arm. "By the way, the teacher thinks you're sick, so you should probably play that up," he whispered in his ear.
Kurt, still half asleep, put his hand on his stomach and let out a low moan. The teacher nodded sympathetically as Finn helped him into the hall. Kurt blinked as the classroom door shut. "So what happened?" he mumbled.
"You were sleeping in class," Finn explained. "Do you sleep at all anymore?"
Kurt shrugged, nearly tripping over his own shoes as he followed Finn down the hallway in a daze. Finn paused, then scooped Kurt up easily.
"What are you doing?" Kurt demanded drowsily. "Put me down."
"You're too tired to walk," Finn said.
Despite Kurt's half-hearted protests, his head soon fell against Finn's shoulder. Finn carried him down the quiet halls to the nurse's office, relieved for the sake of Kurt's pride that no one could see them. He hadn't realized how light Kurt was. It was kind of scary, to be honest.
The nurse glanced up from her desk as Finn walked in. "What happened?" she asked.
"He's just exhausted," Finn explained. "His dad's in the hospital and he's kind of worn himself out." He shifted Kurt in his arms a little. "Can I put him down?"
"Sure, sure, let him sleep," the nurse said.
Finn carried Kurt to one of the cots in the back and laid him down carefully. Kurt roused a little, his eyes opening just a little. "Take a nap, dude," Finn whispered. "I'll tell Mercedes where you are so she doesn't freak out."
"Thanks," Kurt mumbled, rolling onto his side and burying his face in the thin pillow, too tired to argue.
Finn couldn't think of anything else to say, so he just patted Kurt's back lightly and headed back to class.
Part V: Furt
"Best. Wedding. Ever," Finn said, leaning back in his chair.
"No, you mean best wedding cake, judging by the three slices you ate," Kurt said dryly.
"No, no, seriously," Finn said. "I mean, I haven't gone to a lot of weddings, but this one was pretty awesome. Much better than when my cousin got married and had wedding pie and didn't let anyone wear shoes."
"It was a pretty good wedding," Kurt said, smiling to himself as he stretched his legs out.
The two new stepbrothers surveyed the nearly empty ballroom. Most of the guests had left at this point, and the hotel staff was beginning the cleanup. "So, can we go home, or what?" Finn asked.
"I guess we can go home," Kurt said. "I've left specific instructions for the event manager here, so I can just stop by tomorrow and pick up the rest of our things."
Finn pulled himself to his feet and swung his arms experimentally. "I just wanna go home and get out of this suit," he said.
"Suits aren't that bad," Kurt countered. He leaned heavily on the table and stood up. "And don't think I didn't notice that you switched to a clip-on tie…ow."
Finn blinked. "What's wrong?" he asked.
Kurt leaned on the table and looked down at his feet. "I didn't have time to break my shoes in before the wedding, and I think I have blisters," he said. He took a step gingerly. "Hm. Yes. Lots of blisters."
"Want me to carry you to the car?" Finn offered.
Kurt transferred his weight from the table to the back of a chair. "No, no, I can handle it," he said. He limped heavily towards the doors. "Come on, let's go home."
Finn took hold of the back of Kurt's collar, effectively halting him in his tracks. "I don't think so," he said. "You're just going to complain the whole way to the car if you have to walk. And I'm too tired to listen to you whine. So, come on."
"Come on what?" Kurt said. He paused and frowned. "Don't you dare say 'that's what she said'."
"I won't, as long as you let me carry you to the car," Finn said. "Come on, dude, the longer you bitch, the longer it'll take to get home."
Kurt sighed. "Fine," he relented. "But you're not allowed to talk about this."
"The 'that's what she said' joke, or the carrying?"
Finn bent down a little and Kurt twined his arms around his neck. "I'll try not to drop you," Finn joked as he straightened, pulling Kurt onto his back.
"If you do, I swear I'm telling on you."
"How old are you, like five or something?"
"I am the little brother, after all."
Finn carried Kurt to the lobby of the hotel, earning a few strange looks from guests milling around. Kurt offered a beauty-queen wave. "Do you think we should tell them we just came from a wedding?" he asked.
"No, because they'll think that we just got married."
"I know. That's what makes it funny." Finn rolled his eyes as he carried Kurt outside. "I'm going to drop you," he threatened.
Kurt's arms and legs instantly tightened around him. "Don't you dare!"
"I won't, I won't."
Despite the teasing, Finn was pretty glad he'd talked Kurt into letting him carry him to the car. Kurt's SUV was parked pretty high up in the hotel's parking garage; making Kurt walk there with blisters would have just been cruel.
"You know, I always wanted a little brother," Finn remarked suddenly.
"Are you still teasing me?" Kurt said, arching an eyebrow.
"No, no, I'm serious," Finn said. "That's what I asked for when I was five. A baby brother. I guess you know I didn't get one."
"No, really?" Kurt gasped, feigning shock.
Finn jostled Kurt on his back, keeping his hands on his legs. "I mean, it would have been cool to have a little brother then, but…it's pretty awesome we're brothers now, right?" he said.
"Well, I wanted an older sister," Kurt said. "And you, sir, are not what I asked for."
"Seriously, dude. Going to drop you."
They fell quiet for a moment. Finn felt Kurt rest his chin on his broad shoulder. They were almost to the car when Kurt finally broke the silence.
"Thanks for singing to me," he said softly. "Things have been…a little rough, lately, and that…that meant a lot." Finn smiled. "That's what brothers are for, dude."
Kurt thumped him lightly on the shoulder. "Don't you dare call me 'dude'."
And one time:
Finn sprawled over the couch, head hanging precariously near the floor, blasting away at zombies. "I don't care what Puck says, the expansion pack for Red Dead Redemption is awesome," he mumbled to no one in particular.
His cell buzzed from the depths of the couch cushions; Finn scooted down and dug around until he found it. He glanced down quickly to check the text.
Kurt: Hey, Finn. You home?
Finn balanced the controller on his stomach for a moment while he sent a reply.
Finn: yeah nd ovr u leav da?
He went back to his game, only to be interrupted a moment later by another buzz.
Kurt: I assume you mean Dalton Academy? I left an hour ago.
Finn sent a reply back, hoping this would be the end of it and he could go back to his game.
Apparently Kurt was not easily dissuaded.
Kurt: Are you doing anything right now?
Finn rolled his eyes. Sometimes Kurt just frustrated the crap out of him.
Finn: playin rdd
Yeah. Kurt was going to text him back. And sure enough, his phone buzzed again.
Kurt: Can you take a quick break from your zombified cowboys?
Kurt: Because I fell on a patch of ice and twisted my ankle.
Finn sat up, dropping the controller and wincing at the sudden rush of blood to his head.
Finn: dude wher r u?
Kurt: The driveway.
Finn paused the game and jogged outside, stopping only long enough to jam his feet into his shoes. Kurt's big black car was parked in the driveway. "Dude!" he called.
"Driver's side, Finn."
Finn crossed around the car. Kurt was sitting on the concrete driveway in his Dalton uniform, the contents of his messenger bag strewn around him. "Are you okay?" Finn asked as he knelt down beside him.
"Other than my ankle, I think I'm fine," Kurt said, hunching over. "Well, I caught myself when I fell, so my palms are a little scraped up, but other than that…fine."
Finn gingerly lifted the hem of Kurt's uniform pants. His right ankle was already red and swollen. "Dude, that sucks," he said sympathetically. He glanced up at his brother. Kurt's face was white, and his lips were pressed together firmly. "You want me to help you up?"
Kurt bit his lip. "Actually, I was wondering…if you could possibly…carry me," he said. "I don't think I can walk."
"Sure," Finn said quickly. "Sure, yeah, I can do that." He didn't miss the sudden look of relief flash across Kurt's face. And he definitely didn't miss it when Kurt raised his arms as Finn reached for him. Finn slid one arm under Kurt's knees and the other under his shoulders, then stood up slowly.
"Don't step there," Kurt warned. "That's where the ice is. And believe me, it's lethal."
"I won't, I won't," Finn said. Kurt shivered a little in the cold. "How long where you out there?"
"Not too long," Kurt said, gripping the shoulders of Finn's plaid button-down shirt.
Finn carried Kurt up the stairs to his bedroom and set him down carefully on the bed. Kurt winced a little as his sore ankle hit the mattress, but he quickly leaned over and slid off his school shoes.
"You want me to get anything for you?" Finn asked.
Kurt dropped his shoes on the floor and leaned back against the pillows. "Just the first aid kit, if you don't mind," he said.
It took a little while, but Finn finally returned with the first aid kit, a bag of frozen peas, a bottle of Tylenol, and a glass of juice. "Sorry it took me so long," he said, juggling the items in his hands.
Kurt tugged off his tie and dropped it on the floor to join his Dalton blazer and uniform shirt. "It's okay," he said, looking oddly younger and more vulnerable in his white ribbed undershirt and his ruffled hair.
Finn handed him the juice and the Tylenol, then packed the bag of frozen peas around Kurt's swollen ankle. "This is what my mom always does for me when I pull stuff during football," he explained.
Kurt flexed his foot lightly under the cold weight of the bag. "Thanks," he said. "I'm not going to eat those peas ever, but thanks."
"Don't mention it," Finn said.
Kurt flipped open the lid of the first aid kit and pulled out antiseptic and a roll of gauze. "Thanks for helping me," he said. "You can go back to your game now."
Finn hesitated. "Well…" he hedged.
And that's why Carole came home from work to find her two boys curled up on Kurt's bed, a half-melted bag of peas on Kurt's ankle and his hands neatly bandaged, while they watched a movie. "Honey, are you all right?" she asked, shifting the bag and pressing her thumb lightly against the rainbow of bruises on Kurt's ankle.
"Oh, I'm fine," Kurt said dismissively, eyes glued to the television screen.
"Mom, sh! You made us miss the best part and now I've got to rewind it," Finn scolded. "Can you believe he's never seen Anchorman?"
"It's juvenile, yet hilarious," Kurt explained.
"I love lamp!" Finn laughed.
Carole just smiled at them.
True story: I am a sucker for Furt brotherness.
I filled this prompt for the fluff meme because at the time I was mega burned out, and I was hoping that writing something else as a quick drabble would help. It didn't, but my desire to write is back in full force, but I felt that since my posting has been so sporadic lately, I should at least post something.
And also, I adore Furt.
Also, you guys, I totally have a Tumblr, and you should leave drabble prompts in my ask box, because I've been writing little drabbles on tumblr and it is SO MUCH FUN. The link is in my bio.
Also also, I'm going to update "Someday You Will Be Loved" soon. Like hopefully tonight.
Also also also, the second part of this was a rewrite of my oneshot "Awesome and Delicious." WHICH HAS BEEN TRANSLATED INTO ITALIAN! Thank you, lovely Silvia!