AN: Posting this just in time to have canon rip it to shreds. Awesome.

This is a weird idea, but writing about Kurt's clothing is really easy for me to do and before I knew it it was this. AND IT JUST KEPT GOING. Longest one-shot I've posted so far, and I like the length a lot.

Thanks so much for any crit, any comments, anything. I love you all.

ALSO FUCK YEAH NEW EPISODE IN SEVENTEEN HOURS.

Disclaimer: I do not own Glee, or any of Kurt's pants. I do not own the phrase "Oh. There you are. I've been looking for you forever." I just overuse it. And I'm not making any money off this. Just losing sleep.

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Pre-Dalton:

When they met, Kurt seemed to be under the impression that a typical outfit for the typical Dalton boy would involve high fashion capris- cropped at the knee, with combat boots long enough that only the slightest strip of skin was showing. This was so far from the case.

When they met, Blaine's automatic instinct was to look him up and down- some weird combination of the surprise of seeing someone out to uniform and the fact that he was, in fact, a teenaged gay boy. He liked looking at pretty boys. And damn, this boy was pretty.

There was this way that he moved, a defiant sort of strut, that didn't go away, even when the rest of his body language clearly read as terrified. Kurt stood there on those steps and though his eyes were wide and his voice a little shaky, his hip jutted out at a sassy angle. He must've practiced that stance so many times that it became second nature.

He couldn't help but notice the pants. Not like they distracted him, not like it was a big deal. Really. It was just a passing notice, a moment of observance of fabulousness. It wasn't until later that they became a thing he thought of, a thing he missed.

When they were getting to know each other, when they were starting to become friends, Kurt wore the most amazing outfits. It was one of the first things that he began to truly love about his friend Kurt- the way he always dressed to impress, how he was absolutely shameless with his self expression, how easy that sort of thing seemed to be for him.

It was kind of astounding to see how much variety there was for a boy to wear, the accessories and styles that he'd thought were reserved for girls. And then Kurt would walk through the door wearing jeans that seemed painted on, or what were possibly tuxedo pants from his Dad's wedding, or even once a skirt, and it became obvious that Blaine was not quite as fashion forward as he'd thought he was. He became grateful for the Dalton uniform, wearing it whenever he could manage.

Rent night was the skirt night. They planned to meet at the theatre, and Blaine arrived early. He stood by the door, looking out at the parking lot and watching people pass by. And then Kurt walked up to him.

"Hey," Kurt greeted him happily. "Sorry I'm late. Fashion emergency." He whispered those last two words, as though the fact that he, Kurt Hummel, could have a fashion emergency, was a very important secret. And really, it kind of was. Blaine was more than a little shocked at the thought.

"Well," He said, taking Kurt's arm fondly, as he often did. "I certainly can't tell." And he nodded at Kurt's outfit in appreciation, knowing how much Kurt prided himself on his style.

It was only later, when it mattered, that Blaine looked back at that night and noticed the way Kurt blushed, how Kurt grabbed Blaine's hand when the first mugger threw his punch at Colins, and held it for the rest of the act, the look in Kurt's eyes when he noticed that they were both singing along under their breaths.

When it mattered, Blaine looked back at their hug goodbye, Kurt's bare legs pressed against his, and he cursed at past Blaine for not caring.

Because then it was all different.

Dalton Era:

When he got the call, he worked hard to keep his voice steady, void of any emotion, compassionate and about Kurt. Kurt, who was clearly needing someone to be okay with his decision, when everyone else he knew was getting so upset. But it was hard, when part of him wanted so badly to just kickMercedes into understanding, wanted to do something about the shit that had gotten bad enough to send Kurt running here, despite the mantra of Courage Blaine had been trying hard to set permanently in the boy's head.

How long had they known each other? Three weeks? And still, Blaine was going crazy about this. His past was wrapped up in Kurt's now, and he cared for his friend- he'd cared for him in an instant, from the moment they met. And as they became closer friends, it had been clear that they had something special between them. Kurt understood Blaine and Blaine understood Kurt. They could get in each other's minds, and really, it was hard for Blaine not to feel like he was running away to Dalton all over again.

When Kurt showed up to school that next monday, the biggest surprise was the uniform. Of course he's wearing the uniform, you dumbass. He told himself. But he hadn't been expecting it. Had he ever seen Kurt in anything so- boring? The red piping was starting to annoy even Blaine, seeing it every single day. Suddenly the idea of Kurt going to Dalton seemed laughable.

But then he thought about Karofsky, sitting high and mighty at McKinley, and he knew he had to make this transition as easy as possible.

Enter operation Pavarotti. Maybe not the best of mission titles, but hey, it worked. Blaine was a busy man, on the Warblers and various committees his parents thought would give him good 'connections' for later in life. He couldn't be there to ease Kurt's way as much as he wanted to, but he could find him a friend. And this old Warbler's tradition was perfect. The bird was perfect. And as he suspected he would, Kurt bonded to the little thing immediately. He carried Pav everywhere, and when he peered through the bars, bending over to whistle at the bird, Blaine could see the tension, fear, and discomfort float away from Kurt's body.

It was such a process, though. Kurt's adjustment to his new workload, along with his perfectionism, meant that they actually ended up seeing less of each other those first couple of months. They had two classes together, and they had Warblers, but Blaine got busy with rehearsals for King's Island, and then it was winter break.

It was a lonely break. Blaine performed, and he was stuck at home with his family, tensions high as they always seemed to be when he was home for longer than a weekend. He spent most days in his room, playing guitar and wasting time on the internet. David and Wes were out of town. Kurt was busy having his first Christmas with Carole and Finn, and the Ohio snow was making the drive from Westerville to Lima a bad idea anyway.

Break was almost over when the weather cleared enough, and he was sick of his house enough, to text Kurt.

Blaine:

Hey, haven't talked to you in a while. Want to meet for coffee and catch up?

The answer came back quickly.

Kurt:

Ohmygod yes. Can you meet me at the Lima Bean in an hour?

Blaine:

I'm out the door as I type this.

It was true. He was in his car by the time Kurt texted back.

Kurt:

:)

It didn't even hit him for a while. They met, they ordered coffee, they sat down- and all Blaine noticed was that Kurt seemed so much more comfortable than he had last time they'd seen each other. He was more talkative, full of chatter about his friends, who were always supplying them with more drama to discuss. Kurt leaned forward when he talked, he held eye contact longer, his voice was warmer.

"I'm just so glad Mercedes has been free to go shopping while I've been here." Kurt informed him, and Oh, suddenly everything made sense. Kurt looked more comfortable because he was more comfortable. He was wearing his clothes- not some uniform, not the same jacket, sweater, tie, pants, even shoes that everyone else around him was wearing. A quick look under the table and Blaine's suspicions were confirmed. Kurt was wearing bright purple jeans.

"Well of course. She's your best friend! She's not going to pass up a chance to go shopping with you. Only a fool would do that anyway."

Kurt smiled at him, taking a small sip of his coffee. He adjusted the sleeves of his dark grey sweater. "True." He nodded. He sat back in his chair, looking at Blaine with the smallest of self-satisfied smirks on his face. And Blaine knew, in that moment- the real Kurt, and the Dalton Kurt, were two entirely different people. And the longer Kurt stayed at Dalton, the more of him they were losing.

Over the rest of break, Blaine tried to figure out if there was anything he could do. He didn't want to go back to the quieter, subdued Kurt.

But as he so often did, Kurt surprised him. Maybe he was just re-energized from his time at home. Maybe that was why, as Kurt chatted with him in the halls before their first class, he was animated, smiling, happy.

But Blaine had the feeling it had something more to do with the fact that the pants he was wearing? Not quite the same shade as the rest.

Kurt quietly broke the dress code for the rest of his time at Dalton. His pants were a different color, or a different cut, or a different material than the regulation Dalton pants. He'd use a scarf as a belt, or the hem would be done in red thread, or some other detail nobody else seemed to notice.

And they started going out for coffee a couple of times a week. It just seemed natural, after they went during break. And Blaine felt the need to really be sure that Kurt was doing alright. And the company was good. And he liked coffee. Yes, there were many good reasons to be going out for coffee twice or thrice a week.

And then, knowing how much Blaine loved football, Kurt invited him to McKinley's football championship. He accepted, of course.

He pulled into the parking lot of Kurt's old high school for the second time, stepping out into the brisk February air. His hands were cold, and he stuffed his hands in the pockets of his coat as he leaned against his car, scanning the lot for Kurt.

"Blaine! Hey, Blaine!" Kurt's voice called from behind him, running up a bit ahead of the rest of his family. There was a giant, excited grin on his face.

"Kurt!" Blaine exclaimed, opening his arms and pulling Kurt into a quick hug.

"Nice scarf." Kurt complimented, an eyebrow raised.

"Same to you," Blaine returned, and faced the people standing behind Kurt, ready to be introduced. "Carole, right? Your jacket looks amazing on you."

"Oh, thank you dear," Carole said, immediately pulling him into a hug. "I had a bit of help from this one." She gestured at Kurt, who beamed.

"Mr. Hummel," Blaine held out his hand.

And that was when he realized just how scary Kurt's dad was. Burt Hummel was taller than him (though most people were taller than him, so that wasn't a big surprise), and much bigger than him, and under his beanie, his eyes were quite clearly sizing Blaine up. Suddenly it seemed very important that he stand straighter, and flustered, the hand he wasn't holding out shot up to check that his hair was in place.

"It's Burt," The big scary man informed him with a chuckle, and he grasped Blaine's hand firmly. "I'm glad to meet you, Blaine. Surprised it took Kurt this long to drag you to Lima."

"Yeah, dude, he never shuts up about you." A very tall guy added in, and Blaine found himself pounding Kurt's step-brother's fist. Kurt's face was the same bright red as the accents in his scarf. Well, it was pretty cold out. Blaine didn't really notice the comment, distracted by the sudden meeting of Kurt's family, trying to make a good impression.

"You must be Finn."

"Yeah, glad you could make it. You're in for an- um- interesting game."

"Your coach decide to go with Rachel's idea?" Blaine asked, and Burt, Carole, and Finn gave him confused looks.

"We had coffee with Mercedes and Rachel when she came up with it," Kurt explained. They started walking toward the field. "Actually, Blaine helped her come up with it."

"I just hope she doesn't get hurt. Or any of the other girls," Finn said, sounding worried. "Damn Karofsky." He muttered. Blaine looked over at Kurt, but he was fiddling with his scarf, clearly trying not to pay attention.

"Well, we're not going to let that bully ruin tonight," Burt said bruskly, and slung his arm around his son's shoulders. "We've got a championship to win!"

Carole laughed, and tucked her arm around her husband's back, pulling Finn to her side. With an raised eyebrow, Blaine offered his arm to Kurt. A look was exchanged between then, and Blaine knew how hard it was for the boy to ignore where he was, ignore that people would see them, ignore that Karofsky was probably somewhere in the stands right now, and grasp the arm of another boy, no matter that they were simply friends. So Blaine looked back at Kurt, and if people could write words in their eyes, his would say Courage.

The message got across. Kurt smiled wide, and linked his arm with Blaine's, his hand gripping at Blaine's bicep. I could get used to this. Blaine thought, looking beside him at the happy family. It wasn't really something he was used to, and if they weren't making him feel so included he would probably be really jealous. But as it was, Blaine was content to just stay here, linked to these people, the excited pre-game air fresh and familiar in his lungs.

"Hey, hot dogs!" Burt exclaimed. He tried calling the vendor over, but the crowd was too loud and they were too far. Then he tried walking to the vendor, but Kurt dug his heels in.

"Dad, hot dogs are in no way a part of your diet. You know that." Kurt insisted, his nose wrinkled slightly.

"Hey, kiddo, it's a special occasion," Burt wheedled. "I've been so good lately, I can afford a little hot dog."

"But it's so disgusting." Kurt said, sounding bemused and grossed out at the same time.

"Kurt!" Blaine gasped. "Hot dogs are not gross. Hot dogs are a time-honored american tradition! I'm offended."

"Please don't tell me you're going to eat one of those."

"Want one, Blaine?" Burt called from a few paces away.

"The works." He replied, walking towards the hot dogs and reaching into his pocket for his wallet.

"Don't even." Burt said with a nod to his hand, and handed him a foil wrapped hot dog.

"Oh- thank you, sir." It warmed his hands.

"Carole, didn't I tell this boy my name is Burt?" Burt shouted, and they headed back to where the rest were standing.

"I think you did." Carole laughed.

"I should get to the locker room, mom," Finn said, and leaned over to kiss her on the cheek. Burt clapped him on the back, a gesture which he returned to Kurt. "See you, man." He nodded at Blaine, and he was off.

They made their way to good seats, winding through a sea of red and white.

"Thanks for telling me school colors before I left," Blaine muttered to Kurt as they got settled, waiting for the game to start. "I almost went with my white, gold, and green scarf. Which-" He said, gesturing to the visiting team, "-clearly would've been a mistake."

"Of course," Kurt smiled. "I wouldn't have wanted you to clash."

"That would've been a tradgedy." He teased, knocking his shoulder against the other boy's arm affectionately.

Next to them, but in a different world for as far as they were concerned, Burt and Carole exchanged knowing looks.

And then the game began.

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It was, as Finn had promised, an interesting game. The tactic of having half their players fall to the ground the minute the plays started at least confused their opponents for a while- but you couldn't deny that McKinley didn't have an actual team. Valiant effort could only do you so much, when you had four people playing.

When one of the girls suddenly jumped up and grabbed the ball, Blaine couldn't help but scream "GO TINA! GO TINA! GO!" with the rest of the crowd.

And then she was down, and Kurt was paler than he'd ever seen him, but she was alive, so it was all good.

And then there was Thriller.

"Oh my god, it that Thriller and Yeah Yeah Yeahs?" He asked in shock as the song started.

"Yeah," Kurt breathed, his eyes glued to the field with more attention than he'd shown all night. "It really is."

Dalton was screwed.

"But they got the team in it too." Kurt added, squinting.

He was right. It wasn't just New Directions down there. In fact, as he watched, David Karofsky darted onto the field, a grin on his face. He actually looked-

"I've never seen Karofsky look happy before," Kurt whispered, confusion on his face. "Not even when he was tossing slushie in my face. Not even then."

"Hey," Blaine whispered back, and he took Kurt's gloved hand in his. "It's an amazing mash-up. Let's enjoy it."

Kurt beamed at him, and they did just that.

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A few days later, they went out for coffee, and Blaine treated his best friend to his favorite drink.

In return, his best friend gave him the courage to sing his heart out to a boy in a Gap.

A boy who turned out to be stupid, and a meanie head, and a whole lot of other names that Blaine went over for quite a while.

And, still reeling from what Wes and David were calling the "Epic Fail Gap Experience", his best friend admitted to wanting Blaine to sing his love to him on Valentine's Day.

And then they said something about When Harry Met Sally and his best friend came up with a great idea for the Warblers, and honestly, Blaine didn't recall what he said to Kurt, because his head was still saying "Wait, what?" a week later.

That confusion lasted- it lasted a long while. Kurt didn't say another word about it, and it was easy to push it to back of his mind and pretend there wasn't anything unsettled between them. Nothing happening below the surface.

But then his best friend took him to a party, and Blaine got drunk. So drunk that he found himself looking at his best friend's ass because Kurt simply did not wear pants that didn't fit him perfectly. So drunk that he found himself fascinated by his best friend's hair, and his single suspender, and his tight red shirt, and his hands, and his tie that drew his eyes down, and his everything. So drunk that watching Kurt started freaking him out, so he drank more and he danced more and he drank more.

So drunk that when he woke up in Kurt's bed the next morning, all the could remember of the night before was how good Rachel Berry's lips had felt pressed against his.

God, it was confusing.

He and Kurt fought, for the first time, and it felt like his world was crashing about his head. Sexual identity crisis, and suddenly Kurt wasn't talking to him, and he didn't know what to do. If he'd been thinking, he probably would've realized why. But Blaine wasn't exactly known for being observant. That was a really, really miserable few days for him.

He went on the date with Rachel, and they had a good time, but he was distracted by worries and confusion and frustration with Kurt. They didn't kiss goodnight, and he wasn't sure if he wanted them to or not. But Rachel took that into her own hands, more like took his face into her own hands, and planted a big one right on his lips. And it was all wrong. Just- all wrong.

Oh yes. Gay. For sure.

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As the weather got warmer, Kurt stopped wearing scarves. It was like the death of an era.

Blaine met Sue Sylvester and it was quite possibly the weirdest experience of his life. She told them they had to out-sexify New Directions, and so he and Kurt were suddenly discussing how to make an all boys accapella glee club sexy.

Shift forward in time a little bit, and they were sitting in Kurt's room, discussing how to make Kurt sexy. He was trying so hard, getting so frustrated. You can't put so much effort into it. Blaine thought. Just act natural, just move how you usually do, and you'll be fine. But something held his tongue, and then the conversation was somewhere else.

Going to Burt seemed a little extreme. But he remembered being at that football game, remembered the way Burt reached out to his son, the way he looked at him. He knew that this man cared about Kurt more than anything else, from one night. So he went.

From the look on Kurt's face a few days later, it was worth it.

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Regionals were coming up fast. Blaine ate, dreamed, lived, breathed Regionals, every day thinking of new and better things to do, songs they could sing, what they would wear, their coreography, everything. It was all he thought about.

Pavarotti's death put all that to a halt.

When he walked in, Blaine knew something was horribly wrong. Kurt's eyes were already brimming with tears, his voice was shaky, and- he was out of uniform. Intensely out of uniform. He was wearing mourning colors for his bird, singing for his bird, and Blaine couldn't believe someone could just- be so pure of heart.

This, right here, was the most beautiful thing he'd ever seen.

He tried to sing his part, he really did. But it didn't get better as the song went in, it got worse, because Kurt's sorrow only intensified. He sang so clearly. It was like an offering. He walked across the room and Blaine couldn't imagine anything worse than not watching Kurt. He was drawn towards him stronger than ever before. He felt like Kurt was pulling his heart out, could practically feel his slender fingers curling around it, closer than anyone had ever been before.

This- this was unexpected. Was he breathing? He couldn't tell. Nothing in the world existed other than himself and Kurt, nothing. He was filled with them, brimming and he couldn't tell if it was too painful or too wonderful or too perfect, and-

Oh. There you are. I've been looking for you forever.

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So operation Pavarotti had come to an end. And Blaine started Operation Get-Kurt-to-duet-with-me-for-Regionals-and-then-sweep-him-off-his-feet-so-he'll-let-me-kiss-him-until-he-can't-breathe. It was quite easy, actually. He just said a few words to Wes, David, Jeff, and a few other Warblers. Let them know his intentions. And they were happy to do whatever they could to get them together. Wes and David were not afraid to say "I told you so", and he knew it was true. But that didn't matter at all. Because he was on a mission.

The vote was unanimous, and Blaine realized that Jeff had probably told the entire group what was going on. That, or he wasn't as subtle as he'd previously thought. He smiled, and watched the amazed look on Kurt's face with pleasure, and realized that now he had to figure out what the hell they were going to sing.

He woke up the next morning knowing exactly what to sing. It didn't quite make sense, but somehow, it was perfect.

He'd just had the weirdest dream. A dream where he was swimming in outer space, but also in a coral reef, and he was intertwined with Kurt the entire time. Everything else ebbed and flowed, people and places and words and the goals they had. It was beautiful- a dark blue, light blue, purple, green, sparking world that you could never quite focus on. And he was holding Kurt's hand.

And there was a song, playing in his head, the entire time. A song that was sad, but didn't feel sad when he heard it. A song that would be a perfect contrast to the rest of their set, a perfect showcase of the Warbler's tallent, not to mention Kurt's voice. It echoed around him for the rest of the day.

"Candles, by Hey Monday."

Kurt's eyes shot up, and Blaine wondered what the boy thought of his choice.

"I'm impressed. You're usually so top forty." Kurt put the top on his glue, and Blaine walked further into the room, his heart beating faster than should be allowed.

"Well I just- wanted something a little more... emotional." Right. Breathe. He sat down. That was better.

Kurt smiled slightly, and looked down at the table, seeming to be thinking very hard. "Why did you choose me to sing that song with?" He asked, and he tilted his head ever so slightly, and his lips were parted, and the speech Blaine had prepared, the words he'd planned so exactly- they left his head. He closed his eyes, trying to find something to say.

"Kurt, there is a moment- when you say to yourself..."

Oh. There you are. I've been looking for you forever.

He was talking. He could tell he was, because there were words coming out of his mouth and Kurt was watching him so intently and his hand was on top of Kurt's, holding on for dear life and thank god he'd practiced this, because it was coming back to him and he was on auto-pilot, and he was pretty sure he left the ability to think at the door.

"...to spend more time with you."

He stopped talking. It was now or never. He couldn't figure out what the look on Kurt's face meant, and he hoped he was okay with him kissing him, because-

-Oh.

Oh, this was amazing.

Oh, Kurt definitely wanted to be kissed.

Oh, that hand, reaching up and pulling their faces closer.

Oh, Kurt's lips.

He missed them when they pulled away.

All he could hear was the thud of Kurt's hand dropping to the table, and their shallow breathing mingling in the suddenly wide expanse between them. He sat down, unsure if he could stand up any longer.

His lips were tingling.

Kurt's chest was rising and falling so fast, and Blaine felt like he was on fire. Okay, calm down. He thought to himself. All he wanted to do was kiss Kurt, taste Kurt. You actually wanted to sing, remember? He reminded himself, and pulled himself together, laughing slightly, looking away from Kurt so that he wasn't tempted.

"We-" What were we doing again? "We should practice.

But then Kurt laughed just the slightest bit, and he was leaning on the back of his chair like he didn't know what had hit him, and his lips were just the slightest bit swollen, and- "I thought we where." -he joked. Well, that was enough to convince Blaine. One look, and they were together again.

They both stood up this time, their lips smashing together, their hands searching, their bodies pressed together. Christ, this was a hundred times better than hugging him. Blaine was cupping the side Kurt's face, and his skin was so hot, and his other hand was under Kurt's blazer, and he could feel the muscles on his back moving as Kurt- Oh.

He was pressed up against the table, the backs of his legs digging into the mahogany. "Kurt." He gasped, and those fingers twisting up in the hair at the nape of his neck, the super-curly ones that never quite stayed put- was Kurt trying to drive him crazy? Because if he was, it was working.

"Blaine,"Kurt whispered back between kisses, still so close that he could feel his lips brushing against his as he talked. "Finally."

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They were boyfriends. Freaking boyfriends. At Dalton, they were the Warbler's soloist rockstar freaking power-couple, and life was good. No, life was brilliant. Life was the best. They walked hand in hand through the hallways, they practiced (in more ways than one) late into the night, they were ready for anything.

So maybe losing Regionals sucked. And maybe Blaine knew, when Kurt looked at his old Glee club killing it onstage, that he was gonna end up going back to McKinley. But when they stood in the lobby of the theatre after the competition, and they walked up to Kurt's family, and Burt shook his hand again, with a "I know you'll take good care of my son;" and a look in his eyes that clearly said Or else, when Finn pounded his fist with a "Dude, congratulations.;" and when Mercedes threw herself at him and Kurt with a "'msohappyforyouboth EEEEEEEEEEEEEEE!"- It was worth it.

They buried Pavarotti together, the air cold but the sun peeking out between the clouds throughout the day. The tree above them cast splintered shadows on the grave, and Blaine reached out for Kurt's hand, and they walked quietly away, their feet on the packed earth the only sound but for a single bird, singing in the distance.

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It came shortly after, and Blaine wasn't surprised in the slightest. They were lying in his bed, and Kurt's head was resting on his chest, and he was picking at a stray thread in Blaine's sweater, something Kurt never did, even though Blaine didn't care in the least.

"I think- I think I have to go back to McKinley." Kurt said eventually, staring intently at nothing, biting his lip worriedly.

"I know." Blaine replied, not even skipping a beat.

And boy, did that get him a look.

"You know?" Kurt asked, his voice high and incredulous. "What do you mean, you know?"

"I mean I know," Blaine said with a shrug. "I've known for a while."

"But- I didn't even know- I still don't even know! How do you know?"

"You miss everyone there. Dalton isn't quite right for you. The commute is killing you. And you deserve to go to Nationals. You deserve more spotlight than you can get here. Pavarotti died in his cage, and if you stay here- this place will turn into a cage. You need more."

"But- Karofsky." Kurt whispered, his lip trembling slightly.

"Kurt-" Blaine said, and he sat up so that they were cross-legged across from each other, and he could look in his boyfriend's eyes. He took Kurt's cold hands in his own. "-no matter what you do, I'm here for you, and I support you. I know that McKinley didn't feel safe for you for a long time. I know it wasn't safe for you. But if you go back... you will be safe. Maybe not from the stray slushie or two-" He joked, the idea still strange to him. "-but from Karofsky? From his threats? You have your friends there, who offered to be your bodyguards. You have Finn. And I have the feeling that Sue would do a lot for you. Including shipping Karofsky off to Mexico, never to be seen again."

There were tears welling up in Kurt's eyes, but he blinked them away, laughing. "I don't know why she's gotten so attached to me." He said.

"Well, who wouldn't want to protect you with their life?" Blaine asked, pulling Kurt back against him.

"She hated me when I quit Cheerios." Kurt commented, his voice muffled so Blaine wasn't quite sure if he'd heard right.

"Wait. You were a cheerleader?" He asked, nothing else important.

"Didn't I mention it at the game?"

"You said you were a kicker at the game. You said nothing about cheerleading." Blaine corrected.

"Oh. Oops!" Kurt said, with a coy grin.

"Oops? That's all you have to say for yourself?" Blaine asked, and an idea sprung into his mind. "I'll give you 'oops'!" he yelled, picking up the nearest pillow, and he flung it at Kurt's head.

"Blaine! Hair!" Kurt shrieked, flailing so wildly that he nearly fell off the bed.

The resulting battle was epic, and loud, and very mature. It ended fifteen minutes later when they both dropped of exhaustion, splayed across each other on the floor.

"I'm gonna go to McKinley." Kurt said, his voice sure.

"I know." Blaine replied with a smile, and he kissed Kurt on the mouth.

Post-Dalton:

Just because he supported it didn't mean he had to like it, right?

Because waking up, and showering, and getting to class, and then not seeing Kurt right there- it sucked. He missed him, so much that it hurt sometimes. So much that getting happy, "I missed it here everyone is so great you were so right" texts were known to make him bash his head against his locker in between classes.

Which was why, only a few days after Kurt went back, as McKinley High let out of the day, Blaine was sitting in his car, in the parking lot, with no clue of what he wanted to do- only knowing that he couldn't handle one more day without seeing his boyfriend.

His radio was up high and he was singing along very emphatically when Kurt knocked on his window. "Oh, hey! Didn't see you come up." He said, when the glass had rolled all the way down.

"I could hear your music from inside the school," Kurt said, his voice raised to be heard. "you're such a dork," And then he grabbed Blaine by his tie, pulling him into a long, hard kiss. Their tongues slipped together for a moment, and then Kurt stepped away. "I missed you."

"Yeah." Blaine just said, and his heart was still going far too fast when Kurt slid into the passenger seat.

"So, where are we going?" Kurt asked.

"No idea." He admitted, flashing a smile at Kurt before turning the keys in the transmission- but he didn't get that far. Because somehow, he'd forgotten how his boy could dress. And the tightly fitting shirt, the simple, yet elegant and light sweater draped across his shoulders, the damn bow-tie around his neck... Well, hello, gorgeous. His pants were satin, and emerald green.

"...You there, Blaine?" Kurt asked, a puzzled look on his face.

"You're just... really attractive." Blaine managed, and then his lips were on Kurt's again.

"...Oh." Kurt squeaked, and then he was kissing back, and he still tasted the same, like lemon drops and mint chapstick.

They had to break apart so much sooner than Blaine wanted to, because they were still in the parking lot, and Kurt's entire school was walking past them. "I know where we should go. Let me drive?" Kurt asked, and Blaine would've said yes to anything he asked. They switched seats.

Hands really were the most marvelous things, Blaine noticed as they drove. He watched Kurt's on the steering wheel, watched how he let go the minute the car was at a red light and grabbed onto Blaine's. Felt the familiar weight and softness in his palm, the way their fingers interlocked so precisely.

The sun shone down through the sunroof and cast tiny rainbow prisms around the car, and then Kurt was pulling up to a sunny park, open and spacious with bright green tress all about.

"Follow me." Kurt instructed, and hopped out of the car quickly. Blaine happily obeyed, loving the spring air, loving the way Kurt flowed across the park ahead of him, loving that they were all alone.

They stopped at a tree on the far edge of the park. It didn't seem that different from all the other trees. "Why are we here?" Blaine asked, but Kurt just sat down against the tree's trunk, pulling on Blaine's arm. The sight that met his eyes when he let Kurt pull him down was gorgeous. The edge of the park was lined mostly with hedges, but where they were, there was a gap between bushes. And just a little bit away from where they sat, there was a valley. A deep, green valley, a creek bubbling past them and down to a lake, surrounded by buildings and roads. A valley, in Ohio. One of the flattest states in America.

"My mom brought me here once, a year or so before she died," Kurt said, his voice quiet but not so sad. "I've only been back here a few times since then. It's- it's a special place."

"How did I not know that place existed?" Blaine asked in wonder.

"This park is twenty minutes out of Lima, the opposite way from Dalton," Kurt explained. "and the town down there is even smaller and poorer than here."

"You can't tell from here. It just looks- beautiful."

"Yeah."

They looked at each other, and they were totally at peace.

"You look beautiful, too. I missed your clothes." Blaine couldn't help saying.

Kurt giggled.

And they kissed.