Note: So I don't really know what this is, but I spent last night writing this, because apparently fanfiction has overtaken sleep in my list of priorities. I'm not entirely sure why, either, because I'm not a writer, I'm not.
There's a track that accompanies this fic in my mind, but it's not a songfic, and the connection doesn't really make much sense. I've linked it in my profile, though, if you're for some bizarre reason interested.


i

It's late – if Kurt had to guess, he'd say about 3am, but no-one's actually keeping track. The air is full of laughter and sparks from the campfire, and his friends are sitting in deckchairs, talking lazily in their inebriation, lit only by the flicker of the flames. Kurt himself is sober, which he supposes should make him more cautious of his actions – if anyone remembers, he won't be able to pass it off as drunken folly, like they could – but he's giddy from the attention, and tired, and if he's honest with himself, more than a little bit lonely.

He's been in love with Blaine for months, of course – almost right from the start – but now his fierce belief that it's mutual has faded, and he's only just able to convince himself that Blaine could, maybe, almost, feel it too. He knows he's clutching at straws, but Kurt really just needs the occasional glance that he can read too much into to let himself believe that he's not alone in this, and sometimes he thinks that that belief is enough.

He's stretched out uncomfortably, his head resting on the joined armrests of his and Blaine's chairs, with the pretence of looking up at the stars – if anyone asks, which they won't. It's not entirely pretence, anyway – Kurt's always been one for romance, and being almost cuddled-up with Blaine under the stars is a moment that the poet and hopeless romantic in him will probably file away forever.

When Blaine starts lazily stroking his hair, Kurt lets himself believe that it's because Blaine loves him, and forcibly discards thoughts of excess alcohol consumption and a general affectionate nature. He sighs happily, and leans into Blaine's touch.

Half an hour later finds Kurt half asleep, with Blaine's arm around his shoulder, and his head on Blaine's chest. Blaine's still stroking his hair with his free hand, Kurt's still hunched awkwardly over the arms of their chairs (he tells himself that he's too tired to move, but he knows, really, that he's just too scared to do anything that could shatter this illusion), the fire is still crackling, and the hum of laughter still surrounds them.

Blaine gently extricates his hand from Kurt's hair, and instead brushes his fingertips against the back of Kurt's hand (which has been stroking lazy circles on Blaine's upper arm for the last who-knows-how-long). Kurt's breath hitches, but he lets himself relax into the touch; lets Blaine pick up his hand and intertwine their fingers. He watches Blaine, firelight causing his face to glow beautifully and reflecting hints of amber into those deep hazel eyes, as Blaine's thumb strokes gently over his own in the amber light.

"Oopsh," Blaine giggles, and Kurt can sort of feel his grasp on the moment slip a little bit, because the slur of Blaine's words tells him exactly what he didn't want to know; Blaine's drunk. He hums softly in reply, a request for Blaine to elaborate, because Kurt doesn't think he can form words for this anymore, and Blaine giggles again, saying "I thought that was my hand."

Blaine doesn't let go, because even though he's realised that it isn't his own hand he's touching, he still hasn't quite realised just whose it is, or what that means.

Kurt doesn't let go either, because – resigned though he is to this moment staying as just that, resigned to his relationship with Blaine only ever being a series of moments tainted by his knowledge that they don't mean anything, not really, not to Blaine – Kurt thinks he'd rather have what little of Blaine he does right now, than none of him at all.

In the morning, Blaine is oblivious, and Kurt has placed himself as far away as possible, seated between a hungover Quinn and a drowsy Brittany.

When Blaine drops him off at home later that day, he doesn't wait for a goodbye before shutting the door.


ii

It's late and rainy November, and Kurt's been sitting in Blaine's bedroom with the boy himself for the last few hours, watching terrible science fiction movies and sharing an obscenely large bowl of toffee popcorn. It's getting later, though, and Finn's supposed to be picking him up in about fifteen minutes. The park where they're supposed to meet is about ten minutes walk away, so Kurt nudges Blaine (who fell asleep about twenty minutes before the end of 'Time Cop') on the shoulder gently, saying "I've gotta go meet Finn, s'later."

"Hmmmm?" comes the sleepy reply, before Blaine jolts awake. "What, no – don't be silly, I'll walk with you."

"Don't you be silly, Blaine," Kurt protests, "it's pouring out there. There's no need for both of us to get wet. You stay." But of course Blaine insists because it's dark, and he knows the neighbourhood better, and he was planning to have a shower before bed anyway, so what does a little rain matter?

Eleven minutes later, when Blaine's pulled on his shoes, and Kurt's made sure he's got all of his stuff from around Blaine's room, and neither of them have had the common sense to get an umbrella, they step outside, Kurt worrying about how Finn will never forgive him if he's late, even though Finn isn't the one whose Alexander McQueen sweater is going to be ruined in this downpour.

"I have an idea," Blaine offers, his face lighting up. Kurt raises an eyebrow in question. "d'you trust me?" and Blaine's holding out his hand. Kurt stares at it for a second, considering, before nodding and lacing his fingers with Blaine's.

Before he knows it, Blaine's taking off towards the designated meeting spot (just at the bottom of the long hill beside Blaine's neighbourhood, because Finn doesn't believe that his poor old car can make the journey up in one piece), dragging Kurt along behind him. "Blaine!" Kurt shrieks, "what are you doing? Blaine! Stop!"

Blaine stops abruptly and without real warning, and Kurt collides full-force with his back; honestly surprised that he doesn't knock Blaine over and send them rolling down the hill instead. "Ouch," he moans to himself, and then "what was that, Blaine?"

Blaine turns to face Kurt. "That," he grins, Kurt not really liking the mischievous glint in his eye, "was skipping. It's fun. C'mon!" and with that he takes off again, Kurt following and this time only half-protesting.

When they reach the bottom of the hill (only two minutes late to meet Finn, surprisingly), both of them are soaked right through, hair plastered to their faces, clothes sticking to skin, and completely out of breath – neither are sure whether that's a side effect of the skipping, or the laughter, and Kurt secretly thinks it might be a little bit related to how exhausting it is to be this in love.

There it is again, Kurt thinks – he's come to live for these moments, the perfect ones, with laughter and exhaustion and affection; but no matter how many times he experiences it, the pain of looking into Blaine's eyes and seeing hesitance, rather than love, continues to be just as crushing.

He averts his eyes, choosing to stare instead at Blaine's shoes; he releases Blaine's hand, and he mumbles a quiet "see you" before turning around and getting into the waiting car.

Finn asks him "since when did you let your precious clothes get soaked in the rain?", and his only response is to turn up the radio and stare sullenly out of the window, trying to focus on the reflections of streetlights in the puddles rather than how much this hurts.