Love, Like Ghosts: A Glee/Harry Potter Crossover
Pairing: Harry Potter/Dave Karofsky (as well as canon Finn/Rachel, Kurt/Blaine, Sam/Mercedes, Tina/Mike and maybe some hints of Brittany/Santana) I also totally support a Harry-Blaine friendship.
Summary: Pushing for change and left with their ruins of their only magic-based school, the Ministry of Magic passes a law that forces each Hogwarts student still awaiting graduation to spend one year attending a muggle school. Harry finds himself relocated to Lima, Ohio- where the football coach is a former-Auror, the cheerleading coach is absolutely certifiable and blatant discrimination and prejudices thrive in the cut-throat world of high school.
It's there, nestled in the pool of hatred and pettiness that Harry finds Mr. Shuester's Glee Club and finds himself with the dubious task of navigating their tumultuous web of friendships and relationships all while convincing one reformed bully that sometimes a little courage can go a long way.
Spoilers: Content from all seven Harry Potter books as well as all aired episodes of Glee will be used in this story. While this story is set in what would be the 3rd Season of Glee, everything is nothing more than mere speculation on my part. Glee spoilers are so ridiculously inconsistent that trying to follow them is futile.
Notes: This story seems to be picking up something that resembles a plot, if only because my brain wouldn't stop asking me why exactly Harry would even end up in the US and then I had to somehow try and make it work. There's going to have to be some sort of suspension of canon timelines, particularly that of the Harry Potter Universe because the events of all seven books have in fact taken place but Harry is still merely seventeen for a majority of this story. If that really needs an explanation, I'm debating on hitting on the 'age is strange concept for magical folks because they live exceedingly longer lives than muggles' or that the events of Books Six and Seven were condensed into one year. Or Harry's cover story makes it necessary for him to 'legally' be seventeen when he's really eighteen. (Although all that business with the Time-Turners and such in Book Three makes me wonder if Hermione would legally be considered older than her recorded age. Questions, questions and even more questions.)
For: The Plot Bunny Whisper because they asked for a Harry/Dave story and I was hella intrigued.
Thanks for all the wonderful reviews and for picking out any errors I'd missed in the last chapter. Sadly I only have me and my spell-check to run over this thing before I post so any help is greatly appreciated!
Warning: There are homophobic characters in this part and for the rest of the story. Absolutely none of the views of these characters reflect my own. If you find you're sensitive to harsh language or physical/slushie violence, please turn back now.
Also, there are mentions of past Dave/Kurt and past Harry/Cedric. Both of these pairings will not have a huge impact on the story and can be pretty much ignored if they're not your cup of tea because they don't actually happen. If that makes any sense.
Love, Like Ghosts
He'd known since just before that memorable birthday wish for a pair of sensible, stylish heels that his son, his baby boy, was gay.
Mollie had always known, or so it had felt, when Burt had crawled into bed beside her and tried not to cry furious, heartbroken tears. She'd soothed his fears and strictly cut off his stupid high-school-jock way of thinking with a stern, "he's your son. Just love him, no matter how hard it feels, and the rest will sort itself out."
Kurt had been too young to really notice it when Burt had pulled away, unsure of how to deal with a little boy who'd rather plan weddings and tea parties than toss a football around the front yard. Mollie seen right through him, her gaze always so wide-eyed and disappointed as she tried to make up for his absence.
Burt figured it wouldn't matter so much that he couldn't be there for Kurt when his mother always was.
Until one day, she wasn't.
They don't talk about the bombshell Paul Karofsky had unwittingly dropped in Figgins' office that day. Kurt knew but refused to acknowledge the fact that those hateful, disgusting, hurtful words had ever passed his father's dumb, childish mouth. Words that made Burt's chest ache and squeeze in the mockery of that damn heart attack. Words he'd heard shouted in frustrated, misguided fury from Finn's throat.
It wasn't until he was the sole parent of a gay kid that Burt actually became the parent of a gay child. He sat in on Kurt's tea parties, confused and uncomfortable but smiling as his son clinked their plastic glasses together and beamed at him.
He didn't feel that bubbling hopeful feeling when Kurt asked to learn how to ride a bike and he wiped away the tears from those soft, rounded cheeks when the whole thing went south.
Just love him, Mollie had said and Burt found that in the end he always had.
It wasn't until Lima passed judgment on Kurt that Burt became a proud parent of a gay teenage boy.
People left him flyers, pamphlets on summer camps that 'fixed' the 'confused boys' like Kurt. People he'd gone to school with, had drank and laughed and grew up with, offered their fucking condolences that Burt's son had turned out that way- as if he'd died or damn well killed someone.
Like his baby boy was made wrong somehow.
He started talking back, building on that hardass persona from his jock days and morphing it into being a dad again. He tossed the flyers before Kurt could find them, he refused business when customers started talking about his son like that. He fired guys for their careless words, until only a select few had earned their right to stay in his shop.
When Kurt finally, finally said those words to him, Burt sagged in relief. It wasn't the thing they'd never talk about, the shadow hanging over every phone call Kurt hung up on and every bag of those horrible pamphlets Burt burned in secret.
The look of embarrassed, terrified awe on Kurt's face when Burt had said "I know" had damn near killed him. Finding the suitcase, packed with every thing his boy would have needed to get away, stuffed in the hallway closet that night had been worse.
For whatever reason, Kurt had thought, had feared that his own father would kick him out for being exactly who he was. Burt had felt cold and ashamed as he gently pushed the suitcase back into the closet and checked for it again the next night.
He'd had to check for a whole week before Kurt found the nerve to unpack his things and hope he could stay.
Burt had resolved to do better. However he could.
That didn't mean that they didn't mess it up more than once. Between Finn and Carole, Finn and Kurt, Burt and his own damn heart, McKinley and Dalton; they were more than ready for things to be normal. To be good.
Oddly enough, the time for that seemed to be now.
They'd somehow taken two half-families and made them whole. Carole was his wife and while they'd never replace the precious people they'd lost, they'd made new places in each other's lives. Finn and Kurt argued like they'd damn near been raised together and for once their outside relationships seemed to be steady and stable.
(Burt didn't even try to understand Finn and Rachel- that girl was a hurricane in a tiny, tiny package and if Finn was happy enough to let her fly him around then who was he to judge. He just hoped this year brought them less drama than that whole Quinn-prom thing. Carole seemed to hate that girl with a quiet passion that damn near made Burt's head spin.
He's been well and ready to hate the first boy Kurt ever decided to bring home; some punk with shady looks and ever worse intentions. Burt had suffered from vague nightmares of that kid pulling his boy down the dark road of drugs and lewd behaviour, much to Carole's amusement. Instead of that punk, Kurt had found Blaine- who liked football and helped around the kitchen and called Burt 'sir' every night.
Burt had the feeling that trying to hate Blaine was like hating small animals; only crazy people did that. The kid was gold, even if he had the habit of whistling at Kurt's bent form over the engine of car while Burt was right there.)
It was a testament to how much they'd grown as a family when, come Saturday morning, Burt found himself opening his front door to the cheeky foreign kid Coach Beiste was harbouring for the year and couldn't place who exactly the boy had come to visit.
"Um, Kurt's upstairs with Blaine and Finn's being pulled out of bed by Rachel to go see some musical thing."
The kid- Harry, his mind supplied hastily- grinned at him. "Oh, I didn't know that Kurt and Finn were your sons. Kurt and Blaine promised to help me find a song."
Harry pulled a face. "Everyone sings, I'm just not sure I sing well."
Burt knew the feeling. "Guess it's a good thing I'm heading out."
"I think it's probably for the best."
Burt felt his mouth twitch as he suppressed a smile. Damnit, what was it about his kid bringing home decent folk? He was beginning to feel like he'd never get to threaten some asshole teenager with an attitude problem.
Well, besides Puckerman and even he knew to behave in this house.
Harry peered around Burt's elbow- Jesus, was there a height requirement going around for new Glee Club members now?- and cleared his throat pointedly.
Right. He wanted to be invited in. Burt frowned, figuring this would be one of the few times he'd get to stretch his papa-bear muscles without Kurt or Carole making those faces at him- ones that made Burt feel like some sort of stuffed animal or something.
"Hang up a minute, kid," he said, crossing his arms for good measure. "I just want to set some things straight here. My house is a hate-free zone."
Harry shot him one of those stuffed animal looks, somehow making it seem kind of respectful. Burt quickly lost all of his puffed-up ire.
"So. No hate. Or I'll know." Christ, he was starting to sound like Kurt.
"Mr. Hummel," Oh, Burt was doomed. Young men with respectful tones were definitely his downfall. "I can assure you that I will never intentionally cause your son or his boyfriend grief over anything, especially their sexual orientation. That would be somewhat hypocritical of me."
What in the hell was he supposed to say to that? Adjusting his hat, Burt gave him a gruff nod. "Kurt's room is the second one on the left. Tell him the door stays open or he loses it."
"I will relay that message immediately," Harry promised as he toed off his sneakers and quickly disappeared upstairs. Two loud, happy voices greeted him, both rambling excitedly about…something.
Burt stood at the foot of the stairs for a minute longer, waiting for some sign of impending doom. Rachel coaxed a dazed, sleep-rumpled Finn down the stairs and into a pair of moderately clean-looking boots, her mouth going a mile a minute as she tried to simultaneously get Finn out the door and tell Burt exactly what their plans were for the day. In great detail.
The door slammed shut behind them as Burt tried to wave goodbye to his step-son. Finn gave him a series of confused blinks through the small row of windows at the side of the door before Rachel bodily shoved him head-first into her tiny, smart car.
"Dad, you're going to be late."
Kurt eyed him suspiciously from the top of the stairs, dressed in a nice pair of jeans and a simple, striped shirt. He'd been doing that a lot more lately; dressing casually and not like his clothes were designer-made combat armour.
Nowadays, Kurt looked relaxed and happy. Burt smiled.
"I'm going, I'm going. I can tell when I'm not wanted."
Kurt rolled his eyes. "Don't even try that with me. You know you're wanted."
"Love you, kiddo."
"Love you too, Dad. That doesn't mean you're getting out of whole-wheat, tofurkey wraps for dinner tonight."
Burt tried not to shudder. Tofurkey was the work of the devil. "Door stays open."
Kurt gave him a more loving version of the stuffed animal look. "So you've said. Repeatedly. Goodbye."
Burt waved him off, stepping out and locking the front door behind him.
Just love him and the rest will sort itself out.
Damnit all, Mollie always had to have the last word.
Kurt's bedroom looked like something out of a magazine spread, Harry thought with a touch of awe. It was so clean and white and bright and red and neat- like everything had its place and Kurt actually kept it there.
"Kind of intimidating, isn't it?" Blaine asked, grinning widely.
"I feel like if I touch anything I'll leave huge, muddy handprints," Harry confessed absently.
Blaine laughed loudly as Kurt returned from sending his father off into the morning, shutting the door behind them with a smile.
"Your father has threatened to physically remove that door," Harry reminded him, moving to sit gingerly on the pristine, white and red bedding.
Kurt made a dismissive hand movement, as if he truly thought Burt Hummel was all talk. "Stop trying to distract us. Finding the perfect song is an intensive process."
Blaine gave his boyfriend a loving, if somewhat exasperated, look. "We chose my song in less than half an hour."
Kurt didn't seem to appreciate the honesty. "I'm intimately knowledgeable about your voice and its limits. Harry is a blank canvas of possibility."
With a sharp, neat clap Kurt turned towards him and smiled. "Sing us something."
"Now?" Harry's throat tight with nerves as he desperately tried to remember the lyrics and melody of any song. To his horror, only one song seemed to still be slinking around inside his brain.
"Don't you put it in your mouth, uh-huh, 'till you ask someone you love-"
A sharp bark of laughter cut the song short as Blaine hunched over and promptly started crying tears of mirth. Kurt's face went through an impressive range of expressions- from mystified to horrified to amused to pained- as he tried to pull Blaine upright and comfort Harry.
"That was…I'm not even sure what that was. What was that, Harry?" he asked, his voice high and tight. Harry rubbed at his eyes under his glasses, fighting embarrassment.
"I kind of blanked on every song I've ever heard. Except for that one. Oh God."
"Maybe we can pick out something easy for you to try," Kurt said awkwardly, still tugging on Blaine's elbow. "Blaine, sit up- I'm beginning to worry about your ability to breathe properly. Oxygen is vital for life."
"Oh, can't he sing that one? Please?" Blaine asked, wiping his eyes. Harry fought the sudden, childish urge to pout as he turned to sit back against the headboard. From the corner of his eye one of the framed pictures on Kurt's bedside table caught his attention.
It was of Kurt in a stylish kilt- yes Harry knew what a kilt was, Seamus had all but throttled the lot of them when Ron had called it a dress at Bill and Fleur's re-wedding. A crown adorned his head as he clutched tightly to Blaine at his right and a sceptre in his left hand. The pose was corny and trite but the expression on both boys' faces was anything but. He couldn't help but think that they looked like someone home from a battle, bruised and hurting but triumphant.
Kurt nudged him in the elbow with the corner of an old iPod, smiling encouragingly. "Try the playlist called 'starters'. It's what I used on Finn when he first joined the Glee Club."
Stuffing one of the tiny headphones into his ear, Harry fumbled with the slick music player for a moment before finding the proper playlist and hitting shuffle.
Blaine stroked the back of Kurt's neck absently, as they waited for Harry to find something he even knew the lyrics to. Harry found himself watching the scene with a small smile, something warm filling him up from the inside as Kurt leaned into the soft touch without too much thought.
Blaine caught his gaze and with a sudden, surprising flush to his cheeks, dropped his hand quickly. Harry shot him a look so full of unimpressed disbelief just as the chorus of the currently play song struck him.
"Don't let the sun go down on me," he sang, loud and sudden. Kurt jerked back, nearly toppling off the bed in fright. Blaine kept a firm hand on his back as the two of them stared back at Harry's unexpected and inspired performance.
"I really only know the chorus to this one," he said sheepishly, as the second verse kicked in. "Sorry for startling you."
"You've been holding out on us," Blaine accused, pointing a finger in Harry's direction. The whole effect was ruined by the excited gleam in his eyes as Kurt made a shrill, happy noise. "That wasn't bad."
"Okay, okay so maybe you won't be winning any singing competitions with talent we already have in New Directions but you have promise and I know Blaine has the perfect playlist for your kind of voice on his iPod," Kurt said in a business-like tone. His gaze was far away as he made a quick 'give me' motion in Blaine's general direction. "Although, no Elton John. That was an odd choice for you, Harry."
That war-ready, quick-thinking Gryffindor instinct kicked in at that off-hand comment, spurring Harry's mind into planning and his mouth into action. "Because he's British or because he's gay?"
A calm, disturbingly blank smile flitted across Blaine's lips, the kind of professional smiles that celebrities and politicians wore. "As supportive as you've been, Harry not everything about us revolves around our sexuality."
Well, if Harry hadn't felt like an absolute wanker before he certainly did now.
"I'm really not trying to do anything more than point out that it's not nice to assume that just because I don't flash my gay membership around the hallways and shoot off glitter cannons while releasing rainbow tie-dyed doves doesn't mean I'm completely straight."
The twin looks of open-mouthed surprise were better than he'd thought they'd take the news. Harry reached out and gently closed both of their mouths with the tips of his pointer fingers. "I'm pre-emptively telling you that I didn't tell you because I honestly don't think who I'm attracted to should matter. However, I've also come to the resigned conclusion that that kind of thinking is horrifically naïve in these parts."
"So you're stepping out of the closet because of a poorly placed Elton John comment?" Kurt asked, looking mildly outraged. Blaine gave his hand a gently pat.
"We did kind of make the assumption that he was straight without simply asking," he pointed out, looking chagrin. "Although, to our credit, I'm not sure there's even a polite way to question someone's sexuality without sounding offensive."
"Technically, no one besides Puck and Santana have actually asked me my sexual preferences," Harry said, eying them both. "Puck pretty much only asked because the other glee members were worried that I was making a move on Blaine."
"Were you?" Kurt didn't look angry or suspicious, giving Blaine a teasing smile. His boyfriend rolled his eyes heavenward before going back to scrolling through his iPod.
Harry found himself grinning in response. "He's handsome enough but certainly not my type. Sorry."
"You really don't believe that?" Kurt asked, looking mildly bewildered. "That everyone has a type?"
Blaine couldn't hold in a small chuckle as he caught Kurt's gaze. "I don't want to know what that says about the two of us."
"Nothing because we really don't actually have types, Blaine," he said crisply.
Harry thought about Cedric and Ginny and Cho- the way they flew and fought and loved the heady rush of competition just as much as he had. He thought about Dave and the inches of leg those soccer shorts had shown off, even from a distance. "I'm pretty sure I have a type. Obscenely sure even."
Falling back onto his bed with an elegance Harry envied, Kurt drummed his fingers idly against his own belly. "I cannot believe my gaydar is so disturbingly wrong. All the time."
"I don't actually believe that people possess an innate ability to identify another person's sexuality on the basis of social behaviour," Harry said lightly, over-emphasizing his British accent.
Kurt cast him a shrewd look. "What's your favourite Vogue cover?"
Harry had absolutely no idea what that was or why Kurt was questioning him as if he were after the national secrets or something. "I don't know what you're talking about right now."
Kurt and Blaine shared a put-upon look. He kind of wished they stop doing that so much. "Worst gay kid ever," they said in unison.
"Okay, offensive much? I thought the two of you were all about breaking down the stereotype and grinding it beneath your sensible heel." Harry asked, crossing his arms. "And I prefer the term bisexual."
Blaine shot Kurt a warning look. "Don't even dare."
"I wasn't going to."
"That was months ago and you know I didn't mean it," Kurt said, his voice raising in frustration as he sat up. "Back when you decided you'd rather date everyone else in Ohio but me."
"I hardly think that Rachel and Jeremiah rate as everyone in Ohio, Kurt."
Harry quickly stepped in between the pair of them, waving his hands as if he could wipe away the sudden tension. Blaine looked defensive and regretful as Kurt crossed his arms and looked small. It kind of amazed Harry how someone as big and- well to use his own words- as fabulous as Kurt could compact himself into something physically timid and uncertain.
"And here they've been telling me the two of you are boring," he said awkwardly as Kurt let out a soft breath and Blaine edged around him.
"I- I didn't think that any of that stuff was a problem," he said his words stalling out softly. "They didn't mean what you did. What you do."
Kurt shrugged gracefully. "As a general rule it doesn't. There's just so much history between everyone in New Directions but especially between Rachel and I. She kept talking about all the songs the two of you could sing together. I hate that, petty as it is." He chuckled weakly. "I still can't listen to 'Don't You Want Me' without wanting to throw something valuable."
Blaine rubbed at the back of his head tiredly. "Will it help if I promise to never voluntarily sing a love song of any kind with her again?"
Kurt smiled and shook his head. "That's absurd. We have new assignments nearly every week. Just maybe don't enjoy it so much."
"Just know that I'd rather sing with you."
Harry sighed. "This is truly touching but I kind of have the feeling you've both actually forgotten my presence."
They flushed as Harry waved jauntily at them.
"How about I promise to dazzle Rachel with my mysterious singing ability while the two of you sneak away from her tyrannical glee-club captaincy?"
"You're so mouthy," Blaine quipped, clearing his throat and giving Kurt a look that clearly said he wished they were actually alone. "Let's find Harry a song to sing and kick him out."
Kurt smacked him lightly in the belly.
Several hours into just playing all of Blaine's music library in order after the playlist was a bust- and holy hell, the sheer amount of musical numbers was more than a little intimidating to Harry as Kurt's eyes lit up at a few rather…spirited songs- before a song's slow, melancholy strumming filled the bedroom and Blaine flapped a hand excitedly in the air.
"I think this is the one."
Kurt cocked his head to the side, listening intently. "I'm not sure Harry can pull off that kind of raspy anguish. We'll definitely have to take it down a notch for him pitch-wise."
Harry was already nodding though, his mind focused more on the lyrics than the man's voice. Blaine smiled happily. "We just have to make it impressive enough to get him in but not to threaten anyone else's chances of getting a solo."
"I don't want a solo," Harry said fearfully, snapping out of his song-induced daze. "Get me through this audition and I'll willingly be a stage prop. I'll be a tree."
Kurt obviously knew when he was being outvoted. Clicking up his internet browser to find Harry a proper set of lyrics, Kurt made a startled noise.
"Did you know that this guy was the singing voice of Aladdin?"
Monday morning came with a sense of accomplishment, dread and oddly enough, determination.
Harry walked across the parking lot of McKinley armed with a song, a moderately clear conscience and something that resembled a plan. A plan involving Dave Karofsky.
This plan also seemed to involve a dark green sharpie.
The halls were quiet this early in the morning; football practise ran in the afternoons and the weather was still nice enough for everyone to miss the care-free, lazy mornings of summer break.
Despite their tumultuous meeting last week, Harry couldn't help but smile at the sight of Dave, still dressed in his red BullyWhips jacket, standing at his locker as he waited for trouble or Santana. Possibly both at the same time.
With a sly grin, he silently approached the broad back of his prey.
"I've decided that, despite the very vocal portion of the Glee Club, I'm not going to let you avoid me or try to scare me off," Harry said, standing just feet behind Dave.
He watched him jump and smiled.
"Hello, remember me? The short kid you keep following in the shadows like some sort of fashionable, colorblind stalker." He eyed the beret contemplatively. "Possibly even French."
Dave frowned, his eyes darting around the hallway for something, anything to let him escape. It was kind of hilarious, kind of sad that Harry could reduce a man that was a whole head taller and about seventy-five pounds heavier than him to this scared mess of a child.
"Ever think that maybe I want to ignore you?'
Harry pretended to think about that before he shook his head. "Hm, no. I think you wish you wanted to ignore me but you can't. I figure I'm saving you the trouble and emotional turmoil by taking the decision out of your hands."
"I'm offering to be your friend," he added at Dave's highly suspicious stare. "Look, even if you smack the whole student population with eternal detentions you're never going to bully the homophobia out of them. You'll still be one half of the group 'protecting the gays'. I really don't see you making a lot of friends this year."
Dave scoffed, rolling his eyes as he tried to look unaffected. "Whatever. It's not like I want friends anyway. This is senior year."
"Everyone wants friends- the need for companionship is all but engrained into our DNA," he replied drolly, because really- a previously popular jock with a history of bullying losers claiming to not want to make any friends made about as much sense as Ron happily welcoming Draco Malfoy into his family. That is to say: none.
Dave made a disbelieving noise, as if the thought of them being friends was so far-fetched it was laughable. "Friends share interest. We don't exactly have much in common."
Harry grinned widely at that. "We have sports. I'm thinking of trying out for Track."
Dave rolled his eyes but finally, something a lot like interest peeked back at Harry. "You run?"
"For most of my life," he replied cheekily. "You however, play football and soccer. That means you're strong and you can run. Suddenly we appear to have a common interest."
Dave pressed his lips together, a sure sign that he was repressing a smile, before he gruffly added, "I play hockey too. Come the winter."
"You're a man of many talents." Harry tried not to wince too hard as he automatically slipped into that awkwardly flirty part of the conversation. As a general rule, he didn't do subtle, flirty gestures. He was bad at it and his very Gryffindor-ish nature required that he turn the whole thing into some grand, romantic overture somehow.
When he actually realized that he was attracted to someone and not just hopelessly socially awkward.
"Says that guy trying out for Glee and Track," Dave said, turning to look down the hallway. Harry caught sight of a half-smile in his profile and had to suppress a shout of victory. They were flirting- granted it was about as adventurous as watching paint peel but nonetheless, Harry counted it as a pass received and returned.
The second half of his plan suddenly seemed less desperate and much more confidant as he tried not to grin too hard and gestured for Dave's arm. Grand Gryffindor-ish gesture was a go.
"Since we now share a common interest, there's no reason why we can't be friends," he started, sounding frighteningly like Hermione for a moment there. "Friends who talk about things. In person or as luck would have it, on the phone. So give me your arm."
Dave's expression had morphed back into that wary, suspicious scowl of his as Harry made another impatient gesture for his satin-clad arm. "What do you need my damn arm for?"
"Nothing fatal, I promise."
With the look of someone about to shove their hand in a tiger enclosure, Dave relented, shoving his whole arm under Harry nose.
"I don't want to sniff it," he said, quickly pulling the dark green sharpie out of his front pocket and uncapping it. "Just going to give you my mobile number."
Dave watched, silent and looking somewhat fascinated as Harry neatly wrote his number across the clear, smooth skin of his wrist. He blew gently on the skin, smear testing it with him thumb before pulling the cuff back down over the numbers and handing Dave back his arm. "This way you can't accidentally lose or delete it."
"You just- you're insane."
Harry shrugged. "Sanity's a matter of opinion, isn't it? See you at lunch?'
Dave nodded, dropping his eyes to stare down at his wrist as Harry turned away and made his way back to his own locker.
One mission down, one more to go.
"Staring at it isn't going to make him call you."
Dave jerked his sleeve down over his palm, leaving his fingers to peek out as he felt Santana try and peer over the top of his shoulder. "Where in the hell have you been all morning?"
"Nowhere near as busy as you, big boy," she said with a smirk. "Picking up another man's digits- you are such a whore."
"Seriously, Santana, it's not like that," Dave snapped, closing his locker with a bit too much force. Why did she always have to make it sound….like that? "He wants to be my friend. We're…friends."
It sounded weak, even to his own ears.
Santana's dark gaze caught his as she tried to lean up and get in his face. She smelled sharp and spicy, a scent that reminded him of his own mother for some reason. Either way, it was an instant attraction killer.
"Yeah, you're just friends. And Brittany and I weren't fucking for nearly all of sophomore year."
"And we all saw how well that turned out."
Dave felt like an asshole as soon as his mouth clicked shut. Santana looked away from him, her mouth set in a steely line and Jesus, what kind of loser made a girl look like that?
"Sorry," he muttered, rubbing the back of his neck as they waited for an early-morning freshman to amble on down the hallway. "It just pisses me off when you say shit like that when you know I'm not, I'm not…"
Dave seriously hated those two words. They didn't seem big enough, heavy enough, scary enough to even begin to represent everything they did. "Especially to the Straight Champion of Gays."
Santana snorted, the noise loud and unladylike. "I'm only telling you this because, seriously, who would you even tell. Harry's well, I guess you could say he bats part-time for your team."
Dave kind of understood that it was meant to be a meaningful sports metaphor but the comparison was muddy as all hell. "What? How do you bat part-time? Is he injured?"
"I'm starting to think you might be injured," she said seriously, giving him a dark look. "He's into boys and girls, Tank. He's having his pie and eating it too."
Dave kind of wanted to point out that if pie were girls than Harry could be eating both pie and cake but Santana was giving him her expectant look, like maybe Dave was supposed to break out into a song or something. "Okay."
The glare she shot his way could have melted the lockers behind him. "Okay, I'm going to put this into small and simple words for your steroid-decayed brain to understand. Although he may be tiny enough to go and live with the Keebler Elves, Harry is a guy. He's a hot guy that's into other guys sometimes and writing his phone number on your arm is flirting in any language."
Dave couldn't help but try and look at the green numbers he knew were written neatly across his wrist if he just moved back the cuff of his jacket. The skin there felt tight and tingled, as if he could still feel the way Harry's thumb had swept across the dried markings to make sure they wouldn't smear.
"I gotta go…" he said suddenly, shoving his hand into his pocket. He couldn't deal with this- he was gay but that didn't have to mean that he had to be gay. Not here, not when he was so close to getting out.
"I'll let Harry know- message received," Santana called after him, like some strange Jiminy Cricket.
And there went Dave's whole childhood.
Harry was starting to wonder if he had been over-prepared for public school.
His classes were engaging, for the most part, but there was a decided lack of enthusiasm from the staff about anything they were teaching and that apathy was reflected back by their students.
It was like being stuck in a Dementor Tornado of 'Don't Give A Shit'. Harry made a mental note to ask Hermione if it was against the Statue of Secrecy to use a Pepper-Up Potion between classes.
"You know, if you were a girl and if I was actually into Dave? We'd totally be having a smackdown right now."
"It was my mobile number, we're friends now," Harry said without turning around. He was honestly going to check for a track device one of these days. Seriously.
Santana glared a few Juniors out of her way, sidling up to Harry with that same smug smirk on her face. "I legit just had this convo with Karofsky this morning. Same words and all. You're going to be one of those unbearably sweet couples that finish each other's sentences aren't you?"
Harry eyed her casually. "I thought you'd take my intentions towards your boyfriend with a bit more screaming and threats of bodily harm. You almost seem to be anticipating this- should I be worried?"
She shrugged. "I figured I'd try and butter you up before I let it slip that I totally outted you to Davey-boy this morning. Watch him avoid you like the plague, Tiny Tot."
Harry stopped still and furious in the middle of the hallway, lunch forgotten. "Thanks a lot, Santana. You've been absolutely useless."
"Last I checked? It's so not my job to make this easy on you."
"Maybe if you put half as much effort into winning over Brittany, you'd actually be happy," Harry hissed, feeling vicious.
Santana didn't back down, jerking her head back with all the attitude of a pissed off cobra. "Britt only wants to be with me if I'm out, Potter. You and Hummel and Hobbit might be ready to jump off that cliff but some of us aren't."
"So you've said."
"You think you could deal with being Dave's dirty little secret? Sneaking around like you're not seeing each other? Pretending it doesn't piss you off when someone else flirts with him?"
Harry took a deep, calming breath. He got it, really; Santana was projecting and protecting Dave from the situation she found herself in. While she got along just fine with Harry, they weren't friends of any real sort. Not yet anyway. She had no reason to trust him or his character.
"Look, I'm going to be honest with you- I'm attracted to him. I have no idea if it'll even become more than that or even if he's in the same boat. All I do know is that the both of you could use a friend who isn't scrambling for you to come out. Do I think you'd be happier if you did? Yes, but I'm not naïve enough to not know that sometimes it'll suck. Sometimes you'll probably wish you hadn't. I get it."
Santana almost looked uncomfortable at his abrupt speech, her eyes darting around the semi-crowded hallway before she muttered, "we're always freaking talking about gay shit. You need a hobby."
"I'd have a hobby we could talk about if you'd let me get to lunch so that I won't embarrass myself too much at my audition," Harry pointed out, exasperated. "Nothing says public humiliation more than fainting on a stage."
"Food is for the weak."
"It's also for those who don't wish to die," Harry said, catching sight of Kurt walking down the hall towards them. Santana gave him a mock-salute before fixing her beret.
"I leave you to frolic with your kind. Go with glitter, ladies."
"She knew?" Kurt asked, his tone implying he was wondering less about the fact that Santana knew Harry's sexuality and more about what in the world had actually possessed Harry to tell her.
"I told you- she asked."
Kurt shook his head as if displacing that little thought-fly from his perfectly styled hair. "Never mind, I'm not sure I even want to know. I just wanted to tell you that Sam's going to be playing for your audition. I was going to blackmail Puck into doing it but Mercedes thought that was a waste of good leverage and asked Sam instead. I honestly don't know how they think they're being subtle."
Harry frowned, trying to place everyone's names and face. "Sam and Mercedes are the ones who are secretly dating, right?"
"At least since Nationals," Kurt confirmed, even though Harry had no idea what Nationals was supposed to represent. "Blaine likes to think they fell in love during Junior Prom but well, I don't think anyone fell in love during Junior Prom. I think a lot of people fell out of love."
"That seems to be par for the course for the Glee Club."
"Oh you have no idea. I think Tina and Mike are even working on a booklet to help you assimilate into the ranks," Kurt said, seriously. Harry wasn't all that surprised once he'd thought about it.
Lunch period swiftly devolved into Harry trying to eat a soggy ham and cheese sandwich while thirteen people simultaneously tried to give him singing advice. Harry pretended to have a pressing guidance counsellor meeting when Artie offered to show him some 'sweet dance moves'.
Sam shook a handful of sheet music in his direction as they passed each other in the hallway, shooting Harry a wide grin and an overly-enthusiastic thumbs up. He tried to smile back as the bell rang and the afternoon classes began.
Time seemed to speed up and inch by all at once as the trickling, cold feeling of anxiousness pooled in Harry's belly. Before he could blink English class turned into a hot, heavy spotlight shining down on his face in the auditorium.
"You okay?" Sam asked, fiddling with the strings on his guitar. "You look super pale right now."
"If I throw up and pass out, will you at least put me in the recovery position so that I don't also choke on my own vomit and die?" Harry asked desperately.
"Sure," Sam said slowly, giving him the same look Harry had seen Mercedes shoot Rachel and Finn more than a few times over the last week. The one that said 'you are damn full of crazy and you better hope it ain't catching'.
"Whenever you're ready, Harry," Mr. Schuester said with what was supposed to be a friendly smile. Harry mostly felt like the Glee Club's only adult supervisor was about as in charge of things as the actual members of New Directions let him think. The real test would be if they let him in, not if Mr. Schue said he was good enough.
"Um, okay," Words, he could really use actual words right now. "I just want to say that I know I'm not the world's most talented singer- I was politely informed of that right away so I'm really not expecting anyone to, you know, feel like I'm here for that."
Rachel looked decidedly unimpressed, crossing her arms with a huff.
"I'm not even all that knowledgeable when it comes to music. I think the last song I've heard was possibly by the Spice Girls." It wasn't that bad of a lie; he couldn't actually tell a group of muggles that Mrs. Weasley had played 'A Cauldron Full of Hot, Strong Love' on repeat for days before Harry, Ron and Hermione left the country. "I'd really just be content to show up, sing in the background and let you guys have all the fun."
A couple of sympathetic glances were shared as Harry's nerves seemed to be getting the best of him. Mr. Schue tapped the top of the desk with his pen. "What will you be singing?"
"It's called Once," he said swiftly, gripping the microphone stand. "The Brad Caleb Kane version."
"Sweet," Puck said with relish. Kurt gave him a look, arched eyebrow and all. "Dude, I know his music. He writes for Fringe."
"If we can continue?" Rachel asked, flipping her hair back over her shoulder with a frown.
Harry took a deep, steadying breath before giving Sam a sharp nod. The low, melancholy strum of the guitar filled the air, echoing easily out into the seating area. Harry tapped his fingers against the side of the microphone, trying frantically to remember not only all of the lyrics but the tune, the timing and every hint of advice Kurt and Blaine had imparted onto him.
With another calming breath and a little bit of courage, Harry opened his mouth and sang, "you change in front of me, your eyes get darker everyday."
To the casual listener, the song sounded like the desperate apologises of a man dealing with a loved one in the tight grip of addiction. There was guilt in the strum of tightly wound strings and the rasp of a deep voice. Harry closed his eyes and let himself relate to that feeling of knowing you were letting someone down and-to the opposite- of knowing you're fighting with something dark, deep down inside yourself.
"Once I was real, once I was somebody's child."
Harry certainly felt a bit like he knew what it meant to want to feel real, especially once he'd learned the truth of how his parents had died. Harry Potter, The Boy Who Lived, The Chosen One- they all felt like things people needed him to become, not the person he innately was.
The feeling only seemed to increase with the end of Voldemort; somehow, Harry still felt like he was waiting to be real.
"Once I appear, I will be real once again."
Sam finished playing the last note with a bit of a flourish and a grin, giving Harry another quick thumbs up as he peeked over at him. Blaine and Kurt were clapping excitedly- almost embarrassingly over-excitedly in Kurt's case- as the rest of the club joined in, sharing an unreadable look or two.
Mr. Schuester put his hand up, as if he could actually halt the show of support with nothing more than a hand gesture. Puck defied him casually, letting out a sharp whistle and giving Lauren a serious fist bump.
"Guys, settle down- guys!" Mr. Schue said, turning in his chair to stare at the rowdy group behind him. "Come on, we have to at least talk about this."
"What's to talk about?" Rachel asked, looking somewhat mutinous. "It certainly wasn't horrible by any standards but don't you think we have more than enough mediocre singers to carry us through?"
"Are you seriously trying to turn down someone who won't fight you for a solo?" Tina asked her out-right. "If we're going to kick out mediocre voices then more than Harry wouldn't be in Glee Club right now."
"Oh, Ambiguous-Sexuality Asian has claws," Santana drawls, eagerly leaning forward in her seat.
"If we're getting rid of people based on vocal talent, we're going to have to get rid of people on the basis of dance ability- which isn't exactly your strongest suit either Rachel," Kurt pointed out, his voice high and cold.
"Have I somehow managed to offend Rachel?" Harry asked Sam as the rest of the club descended into what looked like a lot of shouting, hair-flicking and sassy hand gestures.
"It isn't Glee Club if Rachel doesn't tell us all how she's the star and we couldn't possibly match her level of sheer talent at least a dozen times," he replied strumming lazily on his guitar. "I don't get how she can feel so threatened when she's pretty much gotten every solo she's ever wanted. Mr. Schue hands them to her and Finn like there aren't half a dozen other people itching to try out for it."
"So it's really just…"
"Rachel being Rachel. I think she legitimately will cease to exist if there isn't drama happening somewhere within a five mile radius of her person. Like a theatrical Pink Slime or something."
Finally, Mr. Schue held up his hands and tried to settle down the rowdy teenagers. Harry had to wonder where in the world this man's head was half the time.
"Guys, calm down- I thought we were done with all this fighting last year." Mr. Schue gave them the most ridiculously put-upon pout Harry had ever seen on the face of someone above seven years old. Their adult supervisor was literally an overgrown man-child.
"Now, I know it wasn't a perfect audition," Mr. Schue said firmly, turning to address Harry as well. "It seemed like maybe you're a bit nervous about being in the spotlight."
He also seemed to be a master at stating the bloody obvious if the eye rolls from the students behind his back were any sign.
"You need to work on your breath control and how to stay on pitch better," Rachel said, steamrolling right over Mr. Schue. "You have to be willing to work on these problems and I don't think you're committed enough to this club to really do that."
"You'd know all about proper breath control," Quinn said, her voice high and falsely sweet.
Rachel frowned. "Of course, seeing as I've been training my voice for years to become the perfect showcase for my talent-" Sam snorted, hunching his shoulders as he tried not to laugh too hard. "You can hardly expect for me to put up with this kind of-"
"I'm pretty sure Quinn meant that you just don't ever stop talking," Artie said with a frown. He pushed his glasses back up to the bridge of his nose as Rachel sent him a chilling look. "Just saying, yo. You kinda gave us the perfect example right now."
"I don't think it's fair to say Harry's not committed when over half of us have been in other school clubs," Mercedes said with a frown. "Most of the guys are still on the football team."
"We can make him Prom Queen," Brittany said suddenly, perking up. "Like Kurt, only without the shiny crown. I have paper and scented markers for the ballots."
"All those in favour of letting Harry join Homo Splosion and share an invisi-crown with Hummel?" Santana asked, raising her own hand. Everyone followed suit with the exception of Rachel, who also jerked Finn's hand back down.
"Looks like he's in," she said with a smug smile.
"As co-captain of the Glee Club-" Rachel began only to have Kurt shush her.
"It doesn't count if your captaincy is self-proclaimed, sweetheart," he said with a clearly unimpressed look. "Mr. Schue, are you going to make it official?"
Harry watched as the teacher eyed Rachel's expression for a moment longer before he turned towards the stage and said, "Welcome to New Directions."
Notes: Finally, some flirting between Dave and Harry! It only took forty thousand words! Things should hopefully pick up a bit more between them now that they've got the 'we're friend!' excuse.
Things to address: Firstly, Rachel's drama there at the end of the update is really just her start-of-the-year insecurity. She's kind of ridiculously forward and territorial on the show, especially when it comes to her place in the Glee Club. The thing people love to hate about Rachel is that she not only expects everyone to be as committed to New Directions as she is, she demands it. She'll calm down once she sees that Harry isn't a threat nor he is someone who'll let them down.
Next, Harry's singing ability. I know it's a trite and ridiculous theme in HP/Glee crossovers to have Harry burst out as this amazing singer and I really, really want to stress that while Harry does possess some talent in that area here, he is not the best New Directions has to offer. He's aware of it, almost to the point of not being aware of the talent he does have- it's typical Harry, in my opinion. He suffers from a dislike of public speaking and a thriving lack of confidence in himself when it comes to be talented at anything besides not dying and Quidditch. However, his dancing ability in the books is said to be pretty poor and that is staying. He'll bond with Finn and Sam over their inability to get their groove-thangs on. It'll be good for him.
Next, I am working on a few other stories that may be getting posted soon, so don't fret and think that this is going to inhibit my time to continue this story. I've put way too much into this idea and this parting to just drop it at a moment's notice. The next few stories are, if anyone's interested in knowing, a Glee!AU about werewolves (so much world-building to be done here, oh God) and a post-Deathly Hallows Harry/Draco story that is sad as all hell. Let's just say that Harry doesn't walk away from dying twice with nothing to show for it.
Lastly, I really want to say that this story is in no way a treaty on, I don't even know...gay rights/opinions/life? My views or those expressed on the show aren't right or better than anyone else's and being gay doesn't make someone the all-knowing guru on how to actually be gay. Take, for example, what a lot of fandom called Kurt's biphobia. As a bisexual person, I wasn't nearly as offended as half of the straight people I know (possibly because Kurt has dated the only bisexual on the show right now, so he's not unaware of the existence of bisexuals so much as he was pretty freaking terrified that Rachel was taking another boy he loved and hurt that Blaine would rather date Rachel Berry than try anything with him. Poor Penguin.) but I have to admit that I really don't get some of the ways my community seems to fight homophobia. So if Harry, Kurt and Blaine seem to be struggling it's because I think that everyone who is out and proud at that age seems to not really know their place- at what point are they being too sensitive or that person who isn't just gay but seems to always be thrusting the good fight into every conversation.
On the reverse side of things, let's just say I have a keen insight to why Santana and Dave would want to cling to their closets just a little bit longer despite knowing that being out would be a weight off their shoulders. It's scary, being that vulnerable to hatred and sometimes it really doesn't seem worth it.
Okay, long slightly awkward and probably offensive word vomit is over. Thanks for everyone who is still reading and/or reviewing. I love reading everyone's thoughts and speculations on what will happen. Does it help to know that I've already written Dave coming out to someone, Dave/Harry's first kiss and something of an argument between Harry and Blaine?