A/N: Just a quick note, if you'd like to get faster updates or news about when things might be posted, find me on tumblr, I'm samsamtastic there as well. Two chunks of the jailbait!AU chapter 2 are floating around there somewhere, ask and I'll find you the links!
Blaine : Are we still hanging out tomorrow?
Kurt : Why wouldn't we?
Blaine : You said on FB Carole asked you to run errands.
Kurt : It's only grocery shopping.
Blaine : You like grocery shopping?
Kurt : Is that a problem?
Blaine : Not at all. What time should I be there?
Kurt : We leave at 5
Blaine : Isn't that a bit late? Won't Carole need the food to make dinner?
Kurt : I meant 5 AM
They parked in front of the supermarket at 5:13, Kurt grinning cheerfully and Blaine clutching his coffee mug like a lifeline. The automatic doors slid open with an audible whoosh, it was so quiet, and Blaine didn't even have the energy to pretend he was using the Force. He was almost entirely sure that Kurt had gone mad.
Kurt grabbed a cart from the corral and set off through the second doors without so much as checking if Blaine was following him. He did, of course, because what else was he supposed to do at five in the morning in a deserted grocery store in the middle of summer vacation? They passed by the produce section, kept walking past the refrigerator section, and then Blaine completely lost the plot.
"Aren't we meant to be actually, you know, buying things?" Blaine asked, rubbing the back of his head in confusion.
"You've obviously never paid attention when at the store with your mother. Everybody knows you start with things from the shelves, then the fresh food, then cold stuff," Kurt explained, finally turning down an aisle.
"I think I've been shopping with her three times in my life," Blaine admitted, laughing. His mother always did those things while he was at school or on the weekends when he was sleeping in.
"I loved grocery shopping with my mom," Kurt admitted softly, pulling the cart to a stop in order to inspect the wall of canned vegetables. Blaine felt his humor disappear immediately. With a sigh, he stepped up behind Kurt and wrapped his arms around his boyfriend's middle. Kurt sagged into the hold with a hum of appreciation. Blaine pressed a kiss between Kurt's shoulder blades before pulling back, but not away. He slid around to stand by Kurt's side, leaving his free arm around his waist.
"What are we looking for? You only eat fresh produce," Blaine said, sipping his coffee.
"Peas. Finn can only stand canned ones and Carole says he needs more vegetables. I can't imagine why, considering if he grows anymore we'll need to get him one of those blinking lights they put on radio towers," Kurt explained disinterestedly as he examined the back of two different brands of canned peas. "I can't believe how much sodium they pack into these things," He muttered before replacing what must have been the more salt-dosed can on the counter and placing the other in the cart. Blaine grudgingly loosed his hold on Kurt so they could move down the aisle.
"Carole's given me some extra money for you," Kurt said as he weighed his options between two heart healthy vinaigrettes. "Since you're over so much she wants you to have some things that you like."
"She doesn't have to do that," Blaine protested. Kurt waved his hand dismissively as he moved on down the aisle.
"Don't be silly, she loves you," he said, checking salad dressing off his list. Blaine leaned in and rested his chin on Kurt's shoulder and tried to make sense of the complicated, color coded chart.
"Are we buying food or doing taxes?" he asked.
"The columns are the rows or sections," Kurt said, "and the different colors tell me what I'm supposed to be doing when I pick that item. See, salad dressing is blue because it's primarily for Dad, meaning it has to be heart healthy. Carole likes things to be low fat or fat free so things I need with that are cerulean," Kurt demonstrated by putting a small jar of fat free mayonnaise in the cart and crossing it off the list. "Finn and his disgustingly large amount of things are all green," he pointed to the column that was mostly all green and had the heading of 'chips and cookies', "All my stuff is in red because it's a flattering color for me."
"What about the stars?" Blaine asked, pointing to the Berry-esque marks after several different items.
"We're trying a new brand," Kurt replied lifting the paper and that's when Blaine realized it was more than one page long and had been stapled in one corner. "Alphabetically listed with a note of the brand used to buy. Usually it's when we've tried to cut a corner here and there and it wasn't worth it. Or like here," Kurt indicated the box that Ritz Crackers, "Finn only likes the off brand ones and I cut them out of my diet because it's too tempting to just smother them in cream cheese, so we're switching."
"You run a tight ship, the government should be beating down your door to get you to help them get back in line," Blaine teased, pressing a lingering kiss to the skin just above Kurt's collar.
"It was my mom's idea. She came up with it when they were planning on having more kids," Kurt said, obviously struggling to keep his face from crumpling with the pain that was laced through his voice.
"Tell me about her? About shopping?" Blaine asked hesitantly. The thing about bringing up Kurt's mother was that Kurt desperately wanted to relive the memories, wanted to talk about her for hours on end, but that he also still felt like a knife was sliding into his gut every time he did. Blaine wanted to help Kurt remember her without the pain, but was never quite sure how to ask.
"Yeah, okay," Kurt breathed, finally, instead of muttering 'some other time' and distracting Blaine with a kiss.
"I take it she's the one that started the early morning attack plan?"
"Saturday was always grocery day. After she and my dad first got married, she made it a rule. Saturday mornings she would go and buy food for the entire week. When I was a baby she would go early so that she could get home before I woke up. Dad was still scared of dropping me, I think," Kurt laughed warmly and Blaine smiled, his heart swelling with the fondness in Kurt's voice. "I always woke before she got home anyway, so he learned. When I was older I would wake up when I heard the car start and would run to the living room to wave goodbye. Dad would pull the couch over to the window once he woke up and we wait for her to come back. Usually I could get him to color with me but sometimes we'd just sit." As Kurt talked he continued pulling things off the shelf and dropping them in the cart, crossing the item off the list, and moving on to the next thing. It was mesmerizing, if Blaine were quite honest, to watch the fluidity of his movements - like it was second nature.
"And then one day I made sure I woke up before she left. I set my little alarm clock and got dressed and was waiting by the front door when she came downstairs. After that I went with her- Blaine you can't buy those!" Kurt cut off abruptly, making Blaine jump and fumble the package of Oreos he was setting in the cart.
"Why not?" Blaine asked incredulously. Hadn't Kurt said that Carole wanted him to pick out some snacks? Oh god, what if he had totally misunderstood and he was overstepping?
"Because they'll make you fat!" Kurt shrieked, grabbing the cookies from Blaine's hands and setting them back on the shelf.
"I eat them all the time, and they haven't made me fat yet," Blaine shot back, putting the cookies resolutely in the cart. Kurt huffed but moved on, leaving the Oreos where they were. Blaine grinned in triumph and hurried after his quickly disappearing boyfriend.
"I can't believe you woke up that early on a Saturday as a little kid," Blaine said a few aisles later as Kurt was comparing two different types of low sodium pretzels.
"Some of us had better things to do than watch cartoons for hours on end," Kurt replied haughtily.
"Kurt," Blaine said softly, putting his hand on the small of Kurt's back. "I think it's wonderful that you kept the shopping tradition."
Kurt was silent for a moment, eyes closed and breathing deeply. He set one of the packages in the cart and replaced the other before leaning into Blaine, dropping his head to rest on Blaine's shoulder with a sigh. "Her funeral was on a Friday morning, because she loved Friday mornings. Said they held so much promise for the future of the weekend. Saturday my alarm went off and I got dressed and waited by the door. I didn't… I didn't remember that she wasn't going to be coming downstairs. But then my dad was there, keys in hand, list in his back pocket and we went grocery shopping.
"We did it together every single weekend, it was our catch up time. Then Dad started keeping the garage open later, and added Saturday afternoons, then Saturday mornings and waking up that early was out of the question if he wanted to keep all his fingers while taking apart an engine. When I got my license I started again and it's sort of my time to be close to her, you know?"
"Why did you invite me along then? I would have waited until you were done to come over" Blaine asked pressing a kiss to Kurt's temple.
"It's stupid," Kurt mumbled, pulling away with a short, humorless laugh.
"No, it's not," Blaine countered, following right behind Kurt as he started to push the cart down the aisle.
"I just - I thought that it would be like you getting to meet her. If you didn't mind coming, that it was like the universe was telling me it was okay to finally be happy, like she had given her approval and I could-" Blaine tugged Kurt to him with a sigh and kissed him to stop the flow of words.
"I don't mind, at all, this is great" he said after a moment, barely pulling back so that their lips brushed with his words. "Though, next week, could we move meet up time back fifteen minutes? I can stop at the Lima Bean for real coffee on my way then."
"You want to come with me next week?" Kurt asked, sounding genuinely surprised. Blaine laughed and kissed him again.
"Of course. Come on, there's still a lot of green on that list and I'm sure Finn will eat the house if we don't get his supply restocked," Blaine joked, though he was honestly a bit worried about what Finn would do if he woke up and there was no food in the house. He'd been around enough to know that the boy got very moody when he wasn't fed.
Kurt smiled at him and pushed the cart forward. Blaine tried several times to pick things out for himself before Kurt would fix him with a glare and tell him in detail what 'eating such food' would do to his health. Eventually he devised a strategy of either wandering to a different aisle to grab what he wanted and waiting until Kurt's back was turned to drop it in or by distracting him with lingering touches and kisses. Both proved to be rather effective. He managed to get a bag of puff Cheetos, two cans of pickle flavored chips, a jar of nutella, three boxes of his favorite butter crackers, and half a dozen packs of Trix yogurt into the cart - the last one was on sale and called his name from down the aisles of clear freezer doors.
Blaine turned back from looking at snack size containers of cottage cheese to ask Kurt a question and found that the words had completely evaporated from his mouth. It was the simplest thing, watching Kurt set a carton of eggs in the cart. But Blaine suddenly found himself struck with the image of Kurt - some years older, maybe a dozen, Blaine didn't know - standing in front of the eggs in a different grocery store, a little boy at his side, little fingers fisted in the fabric of Kurt's trousers, and an even younger little girl sitting in the seat of the cart, babbling away in that curious language that only toddlers seem to speak. Blaine watched himself, a different self, walk up and deposit a gallon of milk in the cart, leaning down to kiss the little girl on the cheek and take the little boy's hand. They moved on and Blaine had to reach out to steady himself and blink hard.
The scene vanished and Blaine saw only his Kurt standing there, eyebrows knitted together in confusion as he examined his list. His footsteps echoed off the glass in the still completely empty grocery store as he crossed the distance to take Kurt in his arms and kiss him soundly in the middle of the refrigerated section. Kurt moaned into the kiss before apparently remembering where they were and pulled away with a slap to Blaine's arm.
"What was that for?" he gasped, eyes a bit dazed and having trouble focusing.
"Just… thank you for bringing me along," Blaine said without actually explaining anything at all.
"As long as you're willing to wake up early on a Saturday, the invitation will stand," Kurt said, giving Blaine a curios look.
"Always," Blaine whispered and leaned in for another kiss. He couldn't help himself. He pulled back when they were both more than a little breathless with a half apologetic grin. Kurt just rolled his eyes in exasperation and moved on.
They finished shopping in a warm silence, packing up the car with more nudged shoulders and brushed hips than strictly necessary. They held hands over the center console for the entire ride home, ignoring Burt's rule of two hands on the wheel at all times. Hardly anybody was on the road for them to crash into anyways. As the turned down Kurt's street, the sun was rising above the line of trees and washing everything with gold. Finn and Burt stumbled out of the house as they pulled up, light coats thrown over their pajamas to battle the early morning chill. Kurt led Blaine inside instead of staying to help unload the car, pulling him down onto the living room couch and turning on the TV.
"I thought you had better things to do than watch Saturday morning cartoons," Blaine teased.
"I never said that once I was done with those things I didn't like to partake in a bit of entertainment," Kurt replied. Blaine laughed and burrowed further into Kurt's side. He reached up and pulled the blanket off the back of the couch and draped it over their laps, leaving the adjustment to Kurt - who, sure enough, fussed with it until it covered them equally and was tucked in at the sides.
Carole came in a while later to tell them breakfast was ready. Blaine stood, stretching out his legs, and helped Kurt to his feet, leaning up to press one last kiss to his lips before they had to all but turn off the PDA. Burt could make even eating seem like a threat of physical violence against Blaine's person if he didn't approve of what Blaine was doing with his son. The food was amazing, something Blaine made sure to tell Carole several times throughout the meal. After breakfast they were shooed out of the kitchen, away from the dishes Blaine offered to do, and went up stairs to Kurt's room (with the door open!).
As they lay side by side on Kurt's bed, Blaine found himself thinking back to what had happened at the grocery store. He'd seen… something and knew without a doubt that Kurt Hummel and five AM shopping trips and two little children - maybe more - were going to be in his future. It settled in his stomach, but in a good way, like the comforting presence of a blanket for a child or a favorite ring. He couldn't wait for the next Saturday, or the one after that, or the dozens hundreds after that.