Title: for decisions and revisions (which a minute will reverse)
Rating: T (this chapter)
Disclaimer: Glee, Kurt, and Blaine all belong to FOX.
Summary: Five ways that Kurt and Blaine didn't meet, and the one way they did.
Spoilers: Through 2 x 16, "Original Song."
Notes: This is the final chapter in this series. Thank you so much to those of you who have read, reviewed, and been so generally lovely to me. It's really meant a lot, and I love you all for it.
Ever since he was a young boy, Kurt Hummel has known that he was different. It wasn't as though he had super powers, or anything, or purple hair, or webbed fingers, but he wasn't like the other boys his age. He didn't like rolling around in the dirt, didn't enjoy Little League, and definitely didn't enjoy pushing girls or pulling on their pigtails. He was personally more interested in their Barbie dolls and games of 'Pretty Pretty Princess' and braiding their hair as they talked.
He remembered, vaguely, a request to his mother and father on his birthday, asking for a "sensible pair of heels." His father had dropped his face into his hands, cheeks mottled red with surprise, and watched his mother throw her head back and laugh, before his face was smushed against her bosom. He had wondered why they were laughing at him, why they were looking at him with face splitting grins on their faces and tears of mirth in their eyes, and why they hugged him as hard as they did.
His mother died of cancer two months after Kurt's eighth birthday (a birthday spent sitting on his parents' bed next to his thin, frail mom, watching her eyes struggle to stay open even as he tears his presents open and blows out his birthday candles). His father cried, cried for days, and Kurt just held him as tightly as his little arms could manage.
When he went back to school, after taking a trip to Columbus to visit his mother's family, somebody called him a faggot for the first time.
The words were harsh as they were slung at him, vicious in their intent. It was a burly looking boy in the grade above him that shoved Kurt in the playground, down into the woodchips, and sneered, "My dad said God took your mom away because you're a faggot. He said if she wasn't already dead, she'd be ashamed of you."
Kurt threw his first, and last, punch that day. He was sent home with a bloody nose and a missing tooth (easily replaced, but made him self-conscious about his smile for the longest time) but his dad had hugged him tight, and Kurt hadn't even gotten in trouble.
Burt told him that night that there were always going to be people who wouldn't accept Kurt for who he was, that there would always be blind and stupid hatred in the world. Kurt hadn't understood, at the time, his eight year old mind barely comprehending the reality of the situation.
At sixteen, though, he was all too aware of the indecency of the world. He had the bruises and scars as eternal proof of the idiocy of humanity, of people who judged him for the way that he was made. Sometimes, laid up in his bed late at night, Kurt would wonder what it would be like if being gay was the norm, and straight people were ostracized. If it was considered unnatural to be attracted to members of the opposite sex, would his life be any easier?
He had felt shame, briefly, for wishing that the world were different, and each time the thought crossed his mind, he became more determined to be proud of who he was. Even as he iced his shoulders, favored his bruised ribs, and daubed antiseptic on the cuts that locker vents left on his shoulder blades, he stared at his pale countenance in the mirror and vowed to himself that he wouldn't let the hatred and stupidity of this town force him into hiding.
He was proud, damn it, proud of who he was, preference for penises and all. He wasn't about to let a few Neanderthals who frequented the local 7-Eleven scare him away. He was determined.
Until Karofsky. Until basic taunts became more threatening, more quietly dangerous.
And then, God help him, it's Noah Puckerman who changes his life around.
That's a twist he wasn't expecting.
Kurt pursed his lips as he examined himself in the mirror. His outfit was the closest approximation to the Dalton uniform that he could manage, and the sour look on his face wasn't helping the façade at all. He wasn't happy in the slightest about being forced to do this stupid undercover mission, just because they thought that he was the only one that would fit in with the Warblers.
He could still hear Puck's voice in his head, snide and teasing as he called the acapella group The Garglers. It hadn't been a dig at Kurt, directly, but the homophobia was still there. And that, more than anything, had been what had driven Kurt out of the room while the others planned their performance.
The first thing he noticed about Dalton was the sheer amount of male that was all around him. Boys…just…a sea of boys, covered in the same clothes, clothes different than his own (damn it, he stuck out like a sore thumb), all milling past him down a spiraling staircase and hurrying down the hall.
They jostled against him, and he tucked his elbows inwards, pulling his sunglasses off of his face and glancing around quickly. A dark haired boy moved past him, and the spicy scent of his cologne drifted into Kurt's nostrils, and before he could help himself, the words fell from his lips. "Excuse me," he said, leaning forward a little and raising his voice to let himself be heard. The boy turned, looked up at Kurt with his mouth falling open, and hazel eyes that had no judgement.
"Um. Hi. Can I ask you a question? I'm new here."
The other boy just looked at him, like he couldn't quite believe what he was seeing or hearing, and all Kurt could think in that moment was, . Oh, hell, I'm the worst spy ever. But then a hand extended towards him, and a smooth sounding voice said, "My name's Blaine."
Their palms slid against each other, fingers locking briefly, and Kurt felt the breath hitch in his chest. He smiles. "Kurt."
The rest of their conversation, brief as it was, remained a blur to Kurt, and it wasn't until he was hand in hand with this newfound acquaintance, rushing down a hallway towards a grand looking room, that he recognized the feeling churning low in his stomach. It was quieter than the crush he'd had on Finn, months ago, but burning more intensely. He watched Blaine sing, his eyes riveted to the shorter boy as he danced stiffly and sang his Katy-Perry-loving heart out, and fell in love.
For a while, he clung to the euphoria that followed developing a new crush, for making a new friend, for having a new confidant. He relished the thrill of having someone just like him to talk to, to text when things got hard, who understood where he was coming from.
He hadn't felt this happy in so long, not since the summer when Azimio and Karofsky were nothing but a pipe dream. Kurt held onto the happiness as long as he could, right up until the minute Karofsky grabbed him on either side of the head, hard, and kissed Kurt.
Kissing Brittany had been strange, in the way that it had been kissing and was therefore pleasant, but it was Brittany and a girl, so it hadn't really done anything for him. Kissing Karofsky reminded Kurt of all the times he'd been shoved into his locker so hard he'd bit his lip, of all the different garbage bins that he had been tossed into. Karofsky's kiss reminded him of fear and everything in the world fighting to keep Kurt silenced.
So, when he moved in for a second kiss, Kurt shoved him away as hard as he could, and raised a hand to his lips. Horror sped through every single vein in his body, and the world blurred around the edges.
Everything seemed so loud, so wrong, and Kurt felt like he was drowning.
And then there was Blaine - Blaine, who looked at Kurt with those eyes and who came to Lima just to help him confront his demons, who treated him to lunch when their plains failed completely.
Kurt was in love. Not the infatuation he'd suffered through with Finn, but love, real burning love that he thought had only existed in movies and everyone's life but his own. He'd resigned himself to unrequited emotions long ago, and while he thrilled at having genuine feelings for someone who was actually of the same sexual persuasion as himself, he could hardly dare to get his feelings up after the Valentine's Day debacle.
Fucking Jeremiah. That's the way he thought of that stupid day, though he very rarely cursed. Just…fucking Jeremiah.
So was it really any wonder that when Blaine came in, while Kurt's just finished crying over the loss of Pavarotti, and sat down next to him and talked of wanting to have an emotional duet, that Kurt just smiled a little and assumed it was just for the competition?
And then…oh, and then.
Blaine hitched his chair forward, slid his hand over Kurt's, and delivered the most beautiful, stuttering speech that anyone had given to Kurt in his entire lifetime. He was still struggling to believe that this was really happening, to him, when Blaine suddenly lifted himself out of the chair and leaned in, capturing Kurt's lips between his own.
It took him a moment or two to realize what the hell was going on, and when he did, he lifted one shaking hand to align with Blaine's jaw. The other boy's mouth fell open at the pressure, and Kurt took the opportunity to slide his tongue into Blaine's mouth. Their tongues slicked against each other, briefly, and then Blaine was sucking on Kurt's lip and it felt so good, and oh, no, why was he pulling away?
His hand fell to the table with a loud thud, and Kurt stared at Blaine in disbelief, watching his full lips quirk into a happy grin. Blaine pressed the back of his hand against his face, muttered something about needing to practice, and Kurt just wanted to kiss him again.
"I thought we were," he said with confidence he didn't know he could have in this situation, and really? What does that even mean? It didn't even make sense in the context of the situation –But then Blaine was reaching for him, and Kurt was rising up to meet him and their lips slanted against one another harder, hotter, wetter than before. They held onto each other desperately, hands sliding against spines and shoulders and mouths open to each other. They didn't stop their kissing until Jeff and Nick stumbled into the room and threw their hands up in front of their faces, startled.
Kurt dropped his head against the table and turned his face away from the intruders, cheeks flushed with embarrassment and laughter and arousal. His ankles were locked together loosely behind Blaine's knees, fingers wound through the tightly gelled mass of hair at the nape of his neck. Blaine, for his part, had fixed his mouth to Kurt's neck and his hands underneath the black cardigan, thumbs stroking against the smooth skin of Kurt's ribs.
"Dude," Jeff said, sounding like he was trying his hardest not to laugh. "We have dorms for a reason."
"Seriously," Nick said, moving to the coffee machine as if he walked in on two boys making out every single day. "Get a room."
They separated slowly, scattering plastic gems across the table and onto the floor, and straightened out their clothing. "Sorry," Blaine breathed, doing his best to look composed. The odd bits of hair sticking up at unnatural angles did nothing to help him. Kurt stifled his laughter into the crook of his elbow. "We will. Um. Do that."
Hastily, they gathered their possessions and avoided the gaze of the other two boys, until Kurt glanced up and met Jeff's eye. The blond winked at him, smirking over the lip of his coffee cup, and Kurt flushed and looked away with a happy grin.
Blaine's hand clasped firmly around his own and pulled, leading him back down the same hallway they'd come through on the day of Kurt's poor attempt at spying. "Well," Blaine announced, stopping and waiting for Kurt to stand by his side. When neither of them was pulling the other along, but instead standing shoulder to shoulder, as equals, he resumed walking. "That was…embarrassing."
Kurt giggled. Blaine looked at him, eyebrows raised and bright eyes flickering down to Kurt's smiling, kiss-bruised lips. He bumped their
shoulders together. "Wanna let me in on the joke?"
Kurt shook his head and let out another laugh, raising teary eyes to the ceiling. "Nothing," he said, shrugging, and his tone was giddy. He licked his lips and dropped his chin down to his left shoulder, looking at Blaine. "I'm just…happy."
Blaine's grin grew impossibly large, and he lifted the back of Kurt's hand to his lips and pressed a soft, wet kiss to the smooth skin of his knuckles. "I'm glad," he said, squeezing their fingers together even tighter. "Me, too, for the record."
Later, as they fell onto Blaine's plush comforter, mouths fused together, Kurt could practically feel the words vibrating around inside his skull.
Oh, there you are. I've been looking for you forever.