Title: Good For The Soul

Author: Aristide and Mairead Triste

Fandom/Pairing: Glee, Kurt/Blaine

Rating: NC-17 for m/m sex and mild kink

Summary: Claiming an identity is not always a simple process.

Warning: Mild kink, angst, other stuff (look, just don't read it if you have triggers, okay? This is not a lighthearted, romantic romp. I'm not going to put out a detailed warning, but—if darker shades of fic are not your cuppa, you should probably give it a miss.)

Author's Notes: I am indebted to Summer, for her fearlessness, kindness and hotness; to AubreyLi, for her generosity, wisdom, insight and grace; and to everyone who read this when it was whacked up into weird WIP chunks and told me I should keep going, for their intrepidity.

Dedication: This story is dedicated to Aubrey and her lovely, lovely brain.

Good For The Soul

By Aristide and Mairead Triste

"I'm sorry, Blaine." Kurt was crying so hard he could barely talk. "I'm sorry, but… I just… I can't see you any more. Please… just leave me alone." There was more, so many more words that he needed to say—so many things he thought he'd have time to say that he'd never said, but he was choking and gasping and wet with tears and rain, his heart hurting so badly that all his joints ached in sympathy, and in the end it was all he could do to turn and run for the house, leaving Blaine standing there with that terrible, shocked look on his face, that terrible hurt look, the look that never would have been there if Kurt hadn't been… who he was.

There were things that nobody knew about him. That nobody was supposed to know. Ever. He'd made it to seventeen intact—more or less intact, anyway, fortified with a carefully constructed set of limits, controls, barriers, all of which served to keep the parts of him that were acceptable at the forefront of his being, and keep the rest of it, the rest of him… away. He couldn't get rid of those parts of himself permanently (not for lack of trying), but at least he'd found a way to keep them down, to stop them (mostly) from affecting who he was, who he wanted to be. It wasn't perfect, but it worked. It had worked.

Until Blaine. Until Blaine with his sexy mouth and his smell and the dizzying hardness of his body, with his face that showed every shade of pleasure and desire so clearly it might as well have been written there, with his strong hands and his dark eyes and his… everything, everything about him. Every cell of him, it seemed, was a draw, a pull, the kind of pull that Kurt responded to—that all of him responded to. Even—especially—the parts he wished would just go the hell away.

Those parts weren't going away. They were taking over. Those parts of him took Blaine's hungry, passionate good-night kisses as an invitation to storm the walls he'd built with such care, an invitation to bulldoze right over everything that kept him safe, that kept him who he was, who he wanted—needed—to be. Blaine kissed him, held him, touched him, and suddenly all the barriers had been breached and the monster was loose, free and ravening and terrifyingly powerful, threatening… everything.

He'd managed, somehow, every time, to put himself back together afterwards, get everything back to where it needed to be. But it was hard and getting harder, and in every moment he felt the danger he was in, felt the dark and awful excitement that came from inside, felt himself teetering, toppling—it was only a matter of time. He knew it. He knew it all the way down to his core.

And so, even though it broke him in pieces to do it, even though it tore through him with the kind of pain that told him something vital and necessary had been ruptured, he had to go.

It was the only way.

In the beginning, there had been no dividing line. It was all one—limited, certainly, by his own limited knowledge, but whole. The man in his fantasies was a romantic hero who took him in his arms passionately after innumerable proofs of love and made him feel amazing (that was the limited part, because he was so young at the time he just had no idea what that would entail). It was all one. But knowledge seeped in, as it had a way of doing, and puberty came along like an earthquake, like a selfquake, and that was when the first cracks appeared, fault lines that were deep and led down to darkness.

The split happened quickly after that, his inner landscape sundered with horrifying speed. His romantic hero was still there, still imbued with the same qualities, only now the soft-focused embrace was… pallid, insipid, lacking the real fire that came from the parts of his brain that dove deep and stayed there, down in the dark.

Down in the dark was pure intensity, the pure power of pure powerlessness. Down there it wasn't one man but many, and none of them were heroes, and none of what happened to him could be construed in any way as romantic. Down there he was an object, a toy, a collection of convenient holes for a dozen depersonalized, arrogant cocks, fucked and used and passed around like a party favor at a particularly bacchanalian frat hazing. Down there he was always wet, with tears and sweat and the come of random guys he didn't even know, the ones who gathered and watched in a circle and jerked off on him lazily while he was used fore and aft, over and over until he was limp, wrecked, twitching.

Down there his only source of pride was that he didn't get off on it (the 'he' in his fantasies, of course, not the he who thought these horrible, hurtful things while masturbating furiously). But then, Blaine. And then, him and Blaine. And then things cracked and fissured and all of a sudden Blaine was there, the one face out of a faceless mass, the only one not satisfied with simply using him but who was bent on the ultimate cruelty of making him come in front of everyone—an ultimate cruelty until he finally broke and gave in, only to be denied and made to beg for it.

The first time that particular fantasy unspooled in his head he didn't even jerk off to it—he came untouched, clutching nothing but his pounding head as his body writhed in the sheets, so full of sensation and shame and dark erotic hunger that he had to stifle himself with a pillow so he wouldn't wake the household. And the next day (a day, thankfully, when he didn't even see Blaine,) he was continually on the brink—a deep breath would drag his undershirt across his nipples, crossing his legs would bring heat and unbearable pressure—and he'd be caught, suspended in a mesh of surrender and need, trying to keep his eyes from rolling up in his head, choking back the soft moans that wanted out of his throat. He brought himself off twice before school, then three more times between classes, again as soon as he got home, and right before dinner in the hopes that he could get through an hour without squirming in his chair—and still he went to bed early, using lotion and stroking lightly because of the chafing, over and over again until he passed out.

The day after that he did see Blaine, and at first it was a struggle not to just fold down onto his knees and offer up everything, which was bad enough on its own. But the next moment brought true horror, an agony of contrition when he looked into Blaine's wide, lovely, innocent eyes—and felt like he'd violated him, violated them both, felt like he'd taken something precious and irreplaceable and… defiled it. He felt like a pervert, a rapist—almost a murderer. He couldn't look at Blaine after that. Couldn't look at him, and couldn't stop wanting him, and couldn't stop hating himself for all the awful things that he wanted.

He tried to fix it. He tried. He tried everything and anything. He clung to romance, to innocence, to purity and ideals and heroism and the basic respect human beings extended to each other when they weren't behaving like depraved monsters.

He tried. He failed.

And so, he did what he had to do. The only option open to him, the only choice remaining. He left.

He spent the next three days in a grey, miserable haze, moving like a zombie through the motions of his life, only able to exert himself towards normalcy when it would save him from having to answer questions that he… could never answer. Would never answer. And the one bright thing in all the featureless grey was also the worst source of pain: if he'd ever had any doubts about Blaine's feelings for him (and he did, despite Blaine's effortlessly casual 'I love you'; he had them in droves,) the passing days were more than enough to prove all his doubts groundless: Blaine called and texted and sent e-mails and called again and actually sent flowers and called some more—but all it really did in the end was sharpen his sense of what he'd lost, what his poisoned soul had cost him.

He didn't read the texts or the e-mails. He didn't listen to the messages. He spared himself that much.

It was a way to cope, a way to get by, and it was dreary and terrible but it was also the best he could do, and as a lifestyle it sucked but as a solution it worked quite well right up until he opened his door to a knock and found Blaine standing there on his doorstep, hands in his pockets and dark shadows under his eyes, looking almost as miserable as he felt himself. Kurt's breath caught and his heart thumped hard in his chest, and oh, he was so gone, so far gone and he swallowed hard because the very last thing he needed was to start crying. He would do that later. In a minute. As soon as he got rid of… "Blaine, I can't—what part of leave me alone don't you understand—"

"I'm not going to ask you anything, Kurt," Blaine said, his voice uncharacteristically scratchy. "I know… I get that you don't want to talk. I'm not asking you to talk. I just… there are some things I need to tell you, some things I need to say, if you'll… if you can listen. I just want to know if you'll listen."

No, he thought with the part of his brain that knew what it was doing. "Okay," he said with the other part, the part that didn't care how much it hurt or what he went through—the part that wanted what it wanted. The part that wanted Blaine, any way he could get him. "Come in."

"I waited until today—tonight—on purpose," Blaine said quietly, standing in the foyer. He made no move to come further into the house, or to remove his light jacket, or even to take his hands out of his pockets. "Because I thought it might be easier for you—"


"Thursday night."

It was. "And?"

"And Carole has her book club on Thursdays while your dad works the closing shift, and Rachel's been texting me for three days about what she's planning to wear on her date with Finn tonight, so…"

"I see. That's… remarkable."

Blaine's face suddenly darkened. "Oh, God—I totally just creeped you out, didn't I?"

"No." One word, but it was almost a sob. He shook his head. "No, it's… just say what you came to say."

"Okay." Blaine stared at the floor for a second, his mouth twisted a little. "I need to apologize to you, Kurt—I'm sorry. I'm really, really sorry."

Kurt closed his eyes, rubbing his chest a little because that was… actually worse than what he'd expected. "Why?"

"Because I know—you told me, and I know, you're shy and not comfortable with a lot of… with some things, and I did everything I could to read your signals, because I didn't want to rush you, I wanted you to set whatever pace you needed—but obviously I read wrong, I suck at reading, or something got by me, but… whatever. I didn't ask if… if you were okay. I could have asked—" he choked off the words and looked away for a moment, his throat working. "I could have asked, and then I wouldn't have hurt you the way I did. I wouldn't have hurt the person that I love the most in the worst… the worst way I could have hurt him—" that was as far as Blaine made it before he stopped, stopped cold and dropped his head down, swiping his eyes with his sleeve. "I'm just… I wish I'd asked. I should have asked."

"Blaine," he couldn't move. He couldn't move at all because if he moved even an inch he was going to be helpless not to go there, helpless not to grab Blaine and hold onto him as tightly as he could. "You didn't rush me, you didn't push me. You didn't do… you didn't do anything wrong. Not one thing."

Blaine looked shocked, his face pale, too pale. He blinked, and then his stunned expression shaded to hurt and his cheeks went red, his eyes bright, their lashes wet and matted. "Kurt," he said throatily. "Then why would you… why did you… Jesus, Kurt. I don't understand at all."

"It's me." It's not you, echoed through his mind—and was he really going to offer that tired old excuse up to Blaine, of all people? "I'm… I'm not… I tried to stop but I couldn't—" and oh, that wasn't what he meant to say, not at all, but it was like a dam had broken somewhere and he way, way too late to stop the disaster from happening. "I'm sorry for what I did, I'm sorry—"

"For what you—you mean, for breaking up with me?"

"That too. God—"

"Kurt," Blaine took a step towards him, almost reaching out but jamming his hands back into his pockets at the last second—and now that made sense, that made total sense, of course, because Blaine thought that Kurt thought that Blaine was some kind of predatory monster… "Please. Tell me what you're talking about?"

"I can't." He couldn't. He was shaking and his teeth were chattering even though he wasn't cold and his stomach was a roiling, gnarled mass of pain and shame and awfulness, and he just… "I can't do it, Blaine. I can't look you in the face and say… and say these things to you. I can't."

Blaine closed his eyes, rocking on his feet a little, his brows drawn low with a faint frown line between them. "I'm not going to push you, Kurt," he said softly, shaking his head. "Not after the hell I've been through these past three days. But I just… I'm just trying to understand, I need to understand, because I was sure, I was so sure I'd done something terrible to you—"

"I'm a freak, in my head," Kurt said through his teeth, almost hyperventilating. "Nobody knows but I think about sex… like, really fff… fucked-up sex… all the time, and I used to have it under control but then there was you and I wanted you and I thought about you and I tried to stop and I couldn't and I am so ashamed—" that was as far as he got before he had to go, had to run, and he ran again, left Blaine standing there, staring after him openmouthed again, turned and ran for the stairs and stumbled up them clutching his stomach and then into his room and onto his bed with his face in the pillows, crying like he was never going to stop.

It took a long, long time for him to cry himself quiet, but eventually he did. He took one of his pillows and pressed it to his belly, curling up around it with a wad of tissues from his nightstand clutched in his fist, just in case he started up again—but no, he was wretched and horrified and felt kind of like he'd just committed verbal seppuku, but apparently he was done with the waterworks, for the moment. Once he was able to stop rocking in an agony of remembered shame he found to his surprise that he was amazingly sleepy, and his eyes were actually drifting shut when he heard a soft, tentative knock at his bedroom door.

It wasn't the familiar knock of anyone in his family. His internal temperature shot up what felt like ten degrees in the space of seconds. "No, Blaine—go away. I can't, I can't—"

Blaine walked in. He just walked in. Kurt sat up and pulled his pillow over his face, hiding, shocked. He was more shocked when Blaine sat down on his bed directly behind him, leaning against him so they were back-to-back, his back warm and solid and there, comforting in an unbearable way. "Blaine, please—"

"I'm not here to ask you questions you can't answer, Kurt," he said, and his voice was low and shaky, less controlled than Kurt had ever heard it. "I'm here because… there's some things I should… I want to tell you, if you'll listen." He shifted a little, broad shoulders settling and the back of his head just touching Kurt's. "I sat down like this because… yeah, I get it, the things you can't say to my face—I've got a few of my own, okay? And this way… we're not face-to-face. But I'll tell you—unless you don't want to hear it. If you don't, let me know and… I'll go. I'll just go."

Kurt wanted to tell him to go—he ought to, because having him there was like fucking torture—but he didn't. He didn't say anything. He clutched his pillow to his face and tried to breathe normally, tried not to push against the shoulders touching his.

"You asked me, once, when I knew that I was gay." There was a pause. "I told you that I was young, still in middle school, that I looked at one of the other boys and I just… knew. Well, that was… the nice version; the version I tell when people ask, the way you did. But it's not the whole story, and it's not really the truth." Blaine sighed. "I've never told anyone the truth. Until now. I'd like… I want to tell you the truth. I owe you that much."

Kurt waited. And waited. Then swallowed. "I'm listening."

Blaine cleared his throat. When he spoke, his voice was so quiet it was hard to hear. "I went to boarding school, a small place, but… exclusive. Lots of rules. Lots of school pride. And the year I turned eleven, a new kid started—a scholarship kid, one of the two scholarship kids the school took each year. Henry never would have been able to afford to go there otherwise."

Blaine shifted against him. "He had my attention from the first day of term. I couldn't… I couldn't stop looking at him, watching him, studying him, I… my skin would prickle whenever he walked into the room—and I had no idea why, no clue at all why he was so… compelling to me."

Kurt squeezed his pillow. "But… you figured it out?"

Blaine took a deep breath. "I didn't. I started out trying to be friends with him, but Henry wasn't… all he cared about was making good grades and keeping his athletic scholarship, and he … he didn't really respond to overtures—we had no similar experiences, or similar anything, really. He didn't respond, and then he just ignored me—" Another breath. "He ignored me, and I resented it. As much and as fiercely as a confused eleven-year-old can resent something, I resented it. And him."

There was a longer pause. Much longer. "Blaine?"

"This is harder than I thought it would be," Blaine murmured, his voice thick. "Can you… will you hold my hand?"

Kurt found Blaine's right hand with his left. Blaine laced their fingers together and squeezed, and Kurt closed his eyes when his heart rattled in his chest like it was trying to escape.

"I… took out my resentment on him. I picked on him. I… encouraged others to do the same. I—I—I… God."

Blaine was crying. Kurt didn't need to see it to know. "You bullied him."

"Yes. And eventually, he cried. In front of me, in front of my friends, in front of everyone who was there—most of his entire class. Just… full-on, full-out bawling. He fell apart."


"Then, that night… I dreamed about it. About making him cry. And that was my first wet dream."

Kurt opened his eyes. For the first time, it was hard not to see Blaine's face. "Oh."

"Yeah." There was a long pause, and when Blaine started talking again, his voice was barely more than a whisper. "I felt horrible about it, about what I'd done, but I kept coming back to it, I couldn't stop thinking about it over and over and within a week I had a whole elaborate fantasy worked out, where our bastard of a Headmaster found out about what I'd done, and, uh, made Henry punish me… paddle me. In front of the school. And that started out as a kind of repentance-fantasy, just a daydream, really, but…" Blaine choked a little. "But it didn't stay that way."

Blaine's voice was heavy with shame and humiliation, and something deep in Kurt's chest felt like it was actually vibrating, aching with familiarity. He squeezed Blaine's hand. Just a little. Just the smallest bit. Blaine squeezed back. It was a long time before he spoke again. "So," he said at last, softly, "that was my first sex-dream, and my first fantasy. And as bad as it was, it was actually pretty, um, tame, compared to some of the stuff that came after. It was like a door was suddenly open, and everything that came through it was just… I don't know."

Kurt bit his lip. He knew. Too well.

Blaine's thumb rubbed over his knuckle, and Kurt had to suppress a shiver. "And all this happened right at the same time I finally realized I was gay, so… all of it got mixed together, and all I could think was that I must be a terrible person. A really, really terrible person. And that I was going straight to hell."

Kurt blinked. "You're… you mean, like, hell hell? You were religious?"

Blaine sighed. "I… yes. At the time, I was—I'd never been any other way. And the guilt was… God. It was…" he sighed. "Sinner. Outcast. Pariah—those words, and so many others, going through my head all the time—right there alongside all these images, thoughts, desires that I couldn't shut off no matter how hard I tried—"

Kurt nodded. He didn't mean to, but he did. He waited for Blaine to go on. When he didn't, Kurt cleared his throat. "So… what happened? I mean… you seem so… normal." he cut himself off there, because that was a hell of a thing to say, but Blaine just squeezed his hand again.

"That's… yeah, Kurt, I think—I am normal. I just… didn't know it at the time. I didn't know it until I cut class one morning and took the Metro into the city to have it out. I wasn't a Catholic, but I went to a Catholic school, and I got this idea stuck in my head that what I needed to do was confess—only not to my school chaplain, of course, but somewhere… some place where nobody knew me."

Blaine's head arched back, almost resting on Kurt's shoulder. "I was so scared, Kurt. Terrified. I thought they were going to lock me up, or make me tell them who my parents were and have them lock me up, or… I don't know. But the priest who heard my confession was just… bored. He was so ridiculously… casual about all of it, like he'd heard it a hundred, a thousand times before. He gave me a penance to do—and then told me I should spend more time playing sports."

Kurt laughed, a short, helpless bark of horrified laughter. "Oh my God."

"Yeah. Or, you know, not, because I walked out of there more or less an atheist. And… more or less at peace."

Kurt shifted. "More or less?"

Blaine was quiet for a long time. "I'm not as brave as you, Kurt," he said finally, squeezing Kurt's fingers. "I know who I am, I just… sometimes I don't feel very brave about it." Blaine swallowed audibly. "But there are things that help—watching you, for one thing, the way you are who you are. That helps. And it helps to remember that I'm not the only guy around who thinks about stuff like… stuff I can't talk about face-to-face."

"No," Kurt rasped. "You're not." He didn't even realize how hard he was clutching Blaine's hand until he heard him gasp. He pulled his hand away and took a deep, shaky breath, pulling his knees up and wrapping his arms around them, leaning hard against Blaine's back. "You're not, okay?"

Kurt rested his head on his knees, and closed his eyes. "It wasn't always… I wasn't always this way." He spoke slowly, haltingly. "In the beginning, it was all romantic… really sweet—these really sweet thoughts and everything after that was kind of… fuzzy, because I didn't know anything, didn't know, really, what I was even thinking about." He stopped to swallow, then started rocking a little, using the momentum to push himself through the times when he got stuck, the times when his inner voice was screaming at him that he should just shut up, shut up now, shut up right now before he ruined everything.

He didn't shut up.

When he was done, when all the (excruciating, terrible) words trailed off to silence, he finally stopped rocking. He sat still, his eyes closed and his cheeks wet, something like a cool rush of wind blowing through his head because he'd said it, he'd said all of it, he'd actually told another living being exactly how much of a freak he really was—



"Would you… will you be my boyfriend again?"

His stomach curled up, and his whole body curled with it. "You… you still want me, after that? Now that you know?"

He heard Blaine take a deep breath. "I… Kurt. More than ever. What I know is… that you're absolutely precious to me, and I love you so much. I love everything about you—"

There was a messy, uncoordinated scramble trying to grab Blaine, and both of them nearly fell off the bed at one point or another, but he ended up curled on his side with his head in Blaine's lap, his hot, wet face pressed hard against Blaine's stomach. He cried quietly but steadily, no sobbing, and Blaine put an arm around his shoulders and petted his hair and just held onto him, held him close, touching him like touching him was touching something sacred.

Everything was different, after that. The next time he saw Blaine (in company, when Blaine came over with Rachel for dinner-and-movie night), he opened the door and let Rachel pass by after a quick, Chanel-scented hug, then just stood there, staring into Blaine's eyes.

Neither one of them said a word, but all the hair on his body prickled, and Kurt felt terribly aware of every inch of his skin, as if he were standing there naked.

"Hi," he said, softly.

"Hi, Kurt," Blaine said, also soft, and it was… weird, so weird, like the air between them was charged with… something, something heavy and mysterious and unknown—unknown until Blaine stepped forward and hugged him, and Kurt gasped when hot desire flooded him, thudding home in the pit of his stomach like a solid weight. He shuddered.

"Oh my God—" Blaine whispered in his ear.

Kurt was shaking. "I have to let go, my father's here, I have to—"

Blaine let go and stepped back, and Kurt stepped forward before he forcibly stopped himself. Blaine cleared his throat and looked away, thrusting his hands in his pockets. Kurt did the same.

"Um… It's going to be a long night," Kurt murmured.

"Uh-huh," Blaine said, blushing.

Two days later Blaine took him out to a movie he didn't see (even though he picked it), then took him out to a dinner that featured food he didn't remember anything about other than how fucking sexy Blaine looked eating it. They walked out into the street afterwards, and Blaine turned to him. "Do you want coffee?" he asked, nodding down the block, and Kurt grabbed him by the arm and dragged him into the alley that ran between the restaurant and the disreputable-looking bar next door.

Blaine got the idea with gratifying speed, shoving him up against the dirty brick wall about halfway down the alley and kissing him hard. Kurt sighed, grit and various unknown slippery substances squeaking under his boots. The environment was pretty much the opposite of romantic, but honestly it didn't feel that way—it felt fucking amazing, and his heart was just as full and achy as… as some other parts of him.

Blaine cupped him there and he cried out softly, a stupid, stupid thing to do when they were essentially in public but he couldn't help it, he couldn't—then Blaine's other hand pressed hard over his mouth, turning his head to the side. Kurt closed his eyes until Blaine leaned in and went for his neck, biting and sucking. Kurt grabbed Blaine's shirtfront and held on as best he could, making helpless but thankfully quiet noises through his nose and bucking desperately into Blaine's hand, stretching out his neck for more, more, electric arcs of pain and so much goodness streaking through him back and forth like a closed circuit.

Blaine growled softly, licked and then bit him just under the ear and Kurt came hard, almost screaming under the muffle of Blaine's hand, unable to stop himself from shoving forward over and over in the most embarrassingly desperate way until he was limp, held up against the wall only by the pressure of Blaine's body against his.

He was gasping way too loudly when Blaine took his hand away from his mouth, but Blaine kissed him immediately, cutting off his air and sucking his tongue and he was dizzy, so, so dizzy, and he didn't even really mean to do what he did but it happened anyway as soon as Blaine leaned back—he went to his knees, then shivered at the sudden awareness of what it looked like, doing that under these circumstances. He was wondering how to tell Blaine that it didn't mean what it looked like he meant, only then he realized that he was still hard and shaking, spreading his thighs wide—because he meant it—he meant exactly and precisely what it looked like he meant—so he reached for Blaine's belt buckle.

"Oh God, Kurt," Blaine stared down at him, barely visible in the little light that managed to filter through from the street. He looked dazed.

"You have to stay quiet," Kurt said, undoing Blaine's pants with trembling hands. At that moment he stopped being so shocked by his own behavior, and started contemplating various ways he could make staying quiet as difficult as possible. His heart lurched when he tugged Blaine's boxer-briefs down just enough and reached in, something like pain deep in his chest to take that part of Blaine into his hands. It was hard and curved and cut and beautiful and he wanted it, his mouth flooding suddenly, all of his senses alive.

Blaine let out a choked-off moan when Kurt took him into his mouth, and Kurt hummed, rubbing over his own renewed erection as he swallowed over and over, working Blaine into his mouth, as much as he could take and then more—because he wanted all of it, he wanted—

"Fuck," Blaine said quietly, his voice shaking. "Kurt—your mouth—God—"

It was a strange juxtaposition: on the one hand, he was on his knees in a filthy alley sucking cock, and that sent a perverse thrill through every nerve he had; but on the other hand and at the same time he was loving Blaine so much for giving him this, for being inside him, his mouth and Blaine's cock the sweetest, most tender connection he could imagine, intimate and reverent and… yes, deeply romantic.

Blaine cupped the back of his head and fucked him, gently at first and then harder, and Kurt was on fire everywhere so he undid his own pants in desperation, pushing into his fist and sucking and resting his head against Blaine's palm and opening up and swallowing, working his tongue against the underside of Blaine's cock. He felt the two of them click into a groove, a shared harmony of ecstasy, and then he just closed his eyes and listened to Blaine's half-stifled, throaty groans, each one resonating at the base of his spine and spreading out, and he was so full, so full of everything…

He slowed his strokes on himself when he got too close, but that just made it harder, made him shake more and want more and he couldn't stop himself from making soft little broken noises of need, and in the end he just held his erection in one unmoving hand while Blaine curled fingers into his hair and angled him and fucked all the way into his mouth, in and out of his throat until his eyes watered.

"Kurt—it's too good, I can't—I'm gonna come—"

Kurt grunted helplessly, his own hips shimmying as he grabbed for Blaine, afraid he might pull out. But Blaine just caught his hands and laced their fingers together and then pressed Kurt's hands and Kurt's body back against the wall, holding him fixed and motionless and fucking him and making him take it, almost choking him with the sudden rush of salty-bitter wetness. Kurt swallowed and locked his spine and came on nothing at all, sucking hard and moaning and falling apart, drinking Blaine down, his heart blazing a conflagration in his chest.

Blaine ended up on his knees too, cupping Kurt's face and kissing him over and over again, deep, hot kisses interrupted by sudden gasps for air. He clung to Kurt woozily, swaying like a drunk, and Kurt steadied him as best he could, given that he felt as weak as a kitten.

"Are you okay oh God Kurt tell me you're—" Kurt shut Blaine up through the simple expedient of kissing him again.

"I'm fine," he said breathlessly, once he pulled back. "I'm good, I'm… oh fuck your dick is so pretty—"

And then they were both laughing, actually laughing and hanging onto each other and still kissing and Kurt wiped wetness away from under Blaine's eyes and pulled him close and kissed him on the very top of his bowed, curly head.

Of course, it wasn't that easy. It couldn't be. His high lasted right up until Blaine dropped him off, right up until he let himself silently into the dark, quiet house, sneaking upstairs with more than his usual care—

Which he had to do because he was filthy, he was a mess, and all at once he locked up, frozen between the fourth and fifth steps while a small, quiet interior voice asked him calmly what his father would think if he saw him like this, covered in dribbles of come with his knees black and his boots muddy, his lips swollen and a giant bite-mark on the side of his neck, clothes disheveled and looking very much like he'd just been gang-banged by a pack of bikers. Kurt took a shocked, hurt breath, holding his chest, and let his head drop down, shame so sudden and heavy on him that he swayed on his feet a little.

Fear of being caught was the only thing that got him moving. He crept up one step at a time, his heart going at a gallop until he'd locked himself in his room and stripped out of his clothes, stashing them guiltily in a duffel bag that Finn had accidentally left in his room after they unpacked from Nationals. He stood there naked for a moment, his toes curling into the carpet and his eyes closed. It was too late to take a shower—he'd wake the house if he did, and possibly prompt some uncomfortable questions that he never ever wanted to answer.

He looked at his bed, but his bed looked… different, like it was the bed that belonged to the person he'd been this morning, not the person he was now. His bed looked… too clean. Too clean for him. In the end he wrapped himself up in a blanket that he could easily wash, then turned off the lights and sank into his armchair with a sigh, curling himself up into the smallest space possible. He closed his eyes and tried not to think, tried not to wonder how something that had seemed so purely and perfectly right just one short hour ago could seem so terribly wrong now.

"You own bowling shoes?"

"Of course I do," Kurt said primly. "My dad likes to bowl. Sometimes I join him. You don't think I'm going to wear rented shoes, do you?"

"The horror," Blaine said dryly. "So… do you have your own ball, too?"

"No, but that's why antimicrobial wipes were invented. So—are you in?"

"I'm… sure, of course. A double date with Finn and Rachel at the bowling alley? How could I possibly refuse?"

Kurt sighed, and held the phone closer to his ear while he leaned against his dresser. "Why do I sense your tongue somewhere near the vicinity of your cheek?"

There was a brief silence, then Blaine cleared his throat. "Kurt. Are you okay?"

"I'm fine," Kurt said breezily. "Why wouldn't I be?"

"Well…" Blaine spoke slowly. "I just… you haven't been able to make it on any of the dates I've asked you on, and now out of the blue you want to go bowling with Finn and Rachel—"

"What's wrong with bowling with Finn and Rachel?"

"Nothing, Kurt, nothing's wrong with it. It just seems a little…" Blaine paused, and took a deep breath. "Like, maybe, you sort of don't want to be alone with me."

It wasn't sort of like that. It was exactly, precisely like that. "That's just silly, Blaine."

"Did I hurt you? When I—"

"Of course not," Kurt said quickly, cutting him off. "I'm fine. We're fine. We'll bowl. You'll love it. It'll be charmingly bourgeois."

He was fine until he hugged Blaine hello at the bowling alley. He closed his eyes and breathed in—and then his knees threatened to go right out from under him, because just the smell of Blaine's neck and hair made his mouth water, made his face get hot and his nipples tighten to stiff, achy points. "Hi," Blaine said in his ear, and Kurt bit his lip because he could feel Blaine wanting him—desire coming off him like heat baking up off blacktop in the middle of July.

"Hi," he said quietly, and oh, his heart was cutting itself in pieces all over again, sweat springing out everywhere on his body. The blood in his veins felt hungry. His face was on fire.

And he was in so much trouble.

He made small talk. He joined in exultation or raillery as the game demanded. He had a long conversation with Rachel about the best strategies for winning Nationals next year (until they both noticed how pink-cheeked and quiet Finn had gotten, at which point they both changed the subject). He let Finn coach him and correct his form, even though he'd probably been bowling longer than Finn had (being that he'd been a member of the Pin Monkeys baby bowler league at age five, before he'd rebelled against the tacky shirts and told his dad he wanted to quit). He smiled and shook his head over Blaine's utter lack of bowling skills, and cheered him on when he and Rachel decided to have a least-amount-of-gutterballs competition, with the loser buying the nachos.

He did the best he could to behave like a normal, rational person, like a person who was on an enjoyable, if absurd, double date. And after two frames he really thought he was going to make it, right up until Blaine came back to the group loaded down with the nachos of penitence and tried to feed him one.

"You should eat this," Blaine told him in a low, flirty voice, holding out a cheese-covered chip. "It's revolting, and also delicious. An unbeatable combination."


"C'mon, Kurt," Blaine said quietly, his eyes teasing, mischievous, and so fucking sexy that Kurt's heart thudded hard in his chest. "Sometimes it's good to give in to temptation, don't you think?"

"I…" need your cock would have been the last of that sentence if he hadn't bitten his own tongue. "Excuse me. Bathroom."

He ran cold water over his wrists, and ignored the fairly disgusting surroundings to splash his face with shaking hands. Then he had to prop himself against the sink for a while, his eyes closed so as to avoid any contact with the depraved, red-faced, sweaty stranger in the mirror. He was hot. He was weak. He was coming apart at the seams—everything on top was bowling and boyfriend and sweet, romantically-tinged kitsch, but that felt like only the thinnest and most friable fabric, a feeble and ineffectual modesty drape covering… everything else, everything heavy-knotted and thick and tied to him right down to his core. Use me. Take me. Make me dirty. Make me—

There was a quick, polite rap on the door. "Kurt… are you okay? You've been gone a while, and I just thought—"

Kurt flipped the deadbolt, hauled Blaine inside, and re-bolted the door. "I'm fine," he said, his hands working open and snapping closed to fists, his palms itching like crazy.

Blaine's eyes were wide, a faint frown line between them. "You… are you sick? You look kind of—"

Kurt got him by the front of his cardigan and kissed him hard, two stumbling steps until he had Blaine up against the door, feeding on his spicy mouth, whining softly. He spread his legs a little, already hard, shuddering when he felt an answering hardness stir against his groin. "Sick," he said brokenly, licking Blaine's bottom lip and sighing. "I… yeah. I think I am."

"Kurt." Blaine had both hands on his face, his open mouth gasping, his eyes wide, welling just a little. "Kurt—I thought I hurt you. I thought… you'd never let me touch you again—"

"Fucking touch me," Kurt said, something deep in his brain exploding when he took one of Blaine's hands off his face and put it where he wanted it, where he needed it, where he ached. "It's all I can think about—you… touching me. Doing things to me. Blaine—" He still had his hand over Blaine's, pressing hard against his erection and arching helplessly, his knees wobbly, his breath hectic.

"Kurt," Blaine growled against his lips, cupping and rubbing and squeezing him almost-too-hard and just-fucking-perfect. "You look… Jesus." Blaine pushed away from the door and took Kurt in his arms, holding him, turning him, grabbing him by the back of the neck and bending him down. Kurt braced his forearms on the sink and rested his hot, sweaty face on them, locking his knees when they shook too hard, when Blaine snugged up behind him and reached around, undoing belt, button and zip with ease. Blaine left his jeans and boxer-briefs stretched at mid-thigh level, and Kurt bit his own forearm when the cool air caressed his hot, damp skin, when Blaine scraped blunt fingernails up his exposed hips.

He stayed quiet when Blaine took him in hand, except for a soft gasp. Stayed quiet for the first, mind-numbing strokes as Blaine worked him, stayed quiet until he felt Blaine—Blaine's bare, hard, silky cock—press up against the crack of his ass, shocking and hot, and then he moaned helplessly, rocking back.

"Kurt, quiet—"


"Shh." Blaine's free hand got him by the hair, pulled his head up so there was nowhere to look except in the mirror, reflecting his own flushed face and lust-blown eyes and Blaine behind him, his face focused and dark as he slid against the sweat-slick, tender skin above his suddenly-aching hole. "I got you, okay? You just… you need to stay quiet."

He couldn't stay quiet. He was twitching, throbbing everywhere, sliding into Blaine's fist and back against his cock and it was heaven, pure fucking heaven, and the only thing that could have made it better was if Blaine actually went for it, put his cock in him and pushed into him and fucked him—he groaned loudly.

"Fuck—Kurt," Blaine gasped and actually let go of him, ignoring his whimper and pulling a folded handkerchief out of his sagging pants pocket. "I'm sorry—"

"God—do it." Kurt opened his mouth and let Blaine muffle him, fresh dry cotton sweet against his tongue, squeaking a little when he bit down on it.

"I love you so fucking much," Blaine said in a low, rough voice, his eyes as dark and hot as well-banked coals, and then he was back where Kurt needed him, grinding against that tender strip of skin, rocking against him and jerking him off and Kurt was so, so grateful for the gag because the words and sounds pouring out of him were an unstoppable torrent, a litany of filthy, shameless begging and gratified animalistic noises of pleasure.

Blaine wasn't holding his head up any more, one hand tight on his hip while the other stroked him, but nevertheless Kurt couldn't look away, couldn't stop watching Blaine get off, head rolling back and his eyes fluttering closed and the strong line of his throat when his mouth fell open to pant—and Kurt was suddenly there, shaking hard and jerking and right, right there, three seconds away from coming his fucking brains out—

"Not yet, okay?" Blaine whispered, and let go of Kurt's outraged dick to clamp hard on his other hip. "Soon, really… really soon, I promise. I… ohh."

Kurt just kept making muffled, high, lost noises through his nose, his knees gone and Blaine the only thing keeping him from sliding down onto the floor. His poor, neglected hole ached as much as his poor, neglected cock did, and he thought he was saying 'please fuck me' over and over but he couldn't be sure—and he absolutely didn't care.

Kurt watched while Blaine held him steady and humped him without fucking him, flushing the prettiest red across his cheekbones, sighing and panting quietly and going harder, faster until he was actually squeezing Kurt's vulnerable flesh closed around himself and sliding through it, picking Kurt's feet up off the floor with the force of his thrusts. Kurt moaned and choked a little and felt all the strength run right out of his muscles until Blaine shoved Kurt's shirt up high between his shoulderblades and came all over his back, grunting softly. Kurt felt the first hot splash hit him and came so hard he screamed a little, boots drumming on the filthy tile floor as he twisted in Blaine's grip and bucked and pumped into nothing, the empty ache in his ass a tortured pleasure, beating with his heart until he was spent.

He lost a chunk of time then, and when he properly came back to himself he was sitting on the sink with Blaine holding him up and kissing him deeply, the sodden handkerchief crumpled in his lap. He wrapped his shaking arms around Blaine's neck and tilted his head, sucking on Blaine's tongue, grateful and quiet and saturated with sleepy bliss. "Love you," he whispered when Blaine pulled back from his mouth, nuzzling into the curve of Blaine's neck.

"Kurt," Blaine whispered in his ear, a shaky, passionate breath. "God, I, I just—"

"You guys in there?" Finn's voice came through the door at the same time as a loud knock, and both of them jumped. "Everything okay?"

"Uh… sorry—nacho-related fashion emergency," Kurt piped in a high, shaky voice. "Everything's fine, Finn. We'll be right out."

"Uh. 'kay. You, uh. Good luck with that."

"Quick, smear some cheese on me," Kurt breathed, rocking, and Blaine jammed his face into Kurt's shirtfront and had some very quiet hysterics.

That night, Kurt sat in his armchair in his darkened room, naked except for a blanket. He'd turned the chair away from his bed, unable to even look at it, the way he was now. His phone sat neglected on the small table next to him, buzzing at intervals. He ignored it. He ignored it until he couldn't ignore it any more, and then he reached over and turned it off without even looking at it.

He didn't cry. He wanted to—regret and shame so palpable that he choked at every breath with how much he needed to—but there were no tears. He kept his dull gaze focused out the window at the stars, the same stars that used to seem… so romantic to him, the same stars he used to wish on, back when all his wishes were pure and innocent and didn't at all involve begging to get fucked in a filthy bathroom in a bowling alley.

The stars used to be a constellation of endless promises. Now they seemed… aimed at him, cold, pitiless points of brightness that made him feel terribly exposed, when all he wanted to do was hide in the dark.

A birthday party. A parentally chaperoned birthday party. Innocuous. Safe. Balloons and party hats and cake and singing, many-happy-returns and presents and ribbons and no dark alleys and no unhygienic bathrooms to have degrading, perverse sex in.

"It's Brittany's party, which adds a certain… well, 'aura of unpredictability' is probably the best way to put it—"


Kurt switched his phone to his other ear. "What? You don't like Brittany?"

"Kurt," Blaine's voice was serious. "I adore Brittany—you know that. And yes, I'd love to go to her party with you. I just… this is the first time you've talked to me since we… since—"

"I'm sorry, I went straight to sleep when I got home. Funny, but I was exhausted for some strange reason—"

"And the next day?"

"I slept late, and then I had so much stuff to catch up on—"

"I think…" Blaine cleared his throat, and when he continued, his voice was low, just a murmur. "Kurt, I think we have a problem, and I'd like to talk with you about it, if you'd—"

"We don't have a problem," Kurt said lightly. They didn't. He'd learned his lesson, and he was never going to put himself through that again, no matter what—even if he had to tie his fucking hands behind his back to stop himself.

He closed his eyes, wishing that he hadn't thought about it in that particular way. "We're fine, Blaine. No problem."

Blaine sighed. "Okay. If you… I just hope you know you can talk to me, you know, if you want to." His voice softened. "I love you. A… lot. A whole lot. I hope you know that."

Kurt squeezed his eyes tighter, pressing one hand to his chest. "I know. I know you do, Blaine. You, too."

"What is it?" Blaine asked, laughing and curious and wide-eyed, hand-in-hand as Kurt tugged him through the darkened backyard, the roar and bedlam of the party dropping quickly away behind them. "What's so important that I have to see it right now?" His feet dragged, and Kurt squeezed his hand tighter and ploughed on. "Mr. Pierce has these old bongos—Finn and I are going to drum, and Santana's doing Peggy Lee's 'Fever'—Kurt, seriously, it'll be sexy and, uh, kind of amusingly ironic, now that I think about it—"

"Shut up, Blaine," Kurt said calmly. This was easier, now—easier every time, actually, to break all the promises he'd made to himself. What wasn't getting any easier was the aftermath—but that was something he couldn't—shouldn't—think about right now. He hauled Blaine behind the rickety shed that sat in the furthest, darkest corner of the vast backyard and put his arms around Blaine's neck, pulling him close. "I can't stand it—you look so beautiful, and the smell of you is killing me, and I've been hard for you since you picked me up and I… I—"

"Oh," Blaine said softly, cupping his face. "Well, I… um… you know, this seems kind of… risky, doing this here—"

"Uh-huh. That's what makes it hot," Kurt whispered, moving in for a kiss.

Only Blaine pushed him back, actually pushed him back and held him back, hands firm on his biceps. "No—Kurt, listen. That's not what makes it hot—what makes it hot is that I love you."

"I know you do, I love—"

"I'm not sure you do," Blaine said, still holding him at arm's length, his voice low.

Kurt swallowed hard. "Blaine, what—you have to know, of course I love you—"

Blaine relaxed his grip and then they were close, right up against each other, only Blaine felt… different, somehow, no longer radiating that intensity of desire that Kurt responded to, that he always responded to. And without that, it actually felt kind of… strange, having Blaine so close, soft words spoken right into his ear. "Kurt, I think… I think you're using what we do together as a way to… hurt yourself, feel bad about yourself." Kurt sucked in a deep breath and pulled away a little, but Blaine didn't let him go. "Do you know how awful that is for me? To be with you like that, and to know we both wanted it, only afterwards you hate yourself for it?"

Kurt pulled away until Blaine let him go, and took two steps backwards. "How do you know that?"

The dim moonlight only gave him a silhouette, but it was enough to see Blaine hang his head. "Because I'm not an idiot, and I care about you, and I spend way too much time paying attention to every detail of you."

"I'm not…" it was important, imperative that he get this across, only every word seemed to stick in his throat. "It's not like I'm looking for ways to feel bad, Blaine," he said finally, quietly. "I'm not. It's just… every time, afterwards, I feel so ashamed—I know, I know, we talked about and it's normal, whatever, it just… it doesn't feel normal. Afterwards."

"Oh," Blaine's voice was shaky. "I see. Well, maybe it isn't what you really want—"

"It's what I want now—then—you know. When I want it. Only afterwards I think about it and it seems like—" He stopped, swallowed, and then forced himself to go on. "Like the opposite of what people in love should… should be doing. Like the opposite of romance—"

"Kurt." Blaine stepped close to him and reached out, a soft touch from his arms up to his shoulders. His voice was quiet, intense. "Look—you know, back when we… when we talked about this for the first time, I wasn't sure, I mean… I didn't know. What would happen. And I was… terrified, actually, about what might happen. But then it happened." Blaine took two quick, deep breaths. "It happened, and it was… Kurt, don't you get it? What we do together isn't the opposite of romance—it is romance. Because all I feel for you is love." He heard Blaine's breath catch, and he realized Blaine was crying. "I love you through every second—your heart, your body, the things that get you hot—I love all of it. All of it. All of you. Can't you… don't you see that's what matters?"

"Blaine," he said softly, reaching out, gathering Blaine's shirtfront into his hands. He closed his eyes for a second, dwelling on Blaine's words, on his sweet, bizarrely adorable (if hopelessly inaccurate) idea of romance. Then he opened his eyes and said what he had to say, the only thing he could think of to say that might… fix things. "Blaine, it's not you—" He choked a little when he realized what he'd said, that he'd said it before, but, God help him, it was true. "This isn't something that's wrong with you. It's me." and all I need is a little time, afterwards, because it's always there but it goes away, it always goes away and then I can—"

"I can't," Blaine said, his voice soft and sad and hopeless. "I'm sorry, but I can't be a part of… of you hurting yourself any more, Kurt… I can't do… this any more."

Kurt swayed on his feet, and just stood there, frozen and motionless, sucking in a deep, sudden breath when Blaine's hand brushed his cheek. "I'm so sorry, Kurt."

And then Blaine was gone.

It was nearly three in the morning when Blaine called him, but Kurt answered on the first ring—it wasn't like he was sleeping, after all.


"Listen, Kurt," Blaine's voice was low, his tone careful. "I know you probably have some things to say to me, but first I need you to just… listen, okay?"

Kurt leaned back against his headboard with the phone pressed to his ear, and closed his eyes. "I… okay."

"There was a time," Blaine said, and stopped, then took a breath and went on. "It used to be that I was… not indifferent—not to our friendship, certainly—but at least oblivious. I was oblivious to certain things about you. For a long time."

"Yeah, I know. But it's—"

"That time is gone," Blaine interrupted, his voice thick. "It's in the past. It's so much in the past that I actually can't even remember what it was like, to think about you and not want you like crazy, or to look at you and not need to hold you, keep you safe so nobody can ever, ever hurt you. To… to be with you and not want to love you so hard that you'll have no choice but to feel it…"

Kurt was crying quietly, holding his blankets close to his aching chest. "Blaine—"

"No, Kurt—I'm almost… I'm almost done, okay?" He took a few deep breaths, and when he went on his voice was steadier, calmer. "If… since the way we've been together is… makes you unhappy, I need to… I want us to find a different way of being together. I want us to find a different way, because the alternative is—it just hurts too much, Kurt. I can't give you up, it's too late, I'm too… I can't do it."

"I'm… what do you want me to do?"

"I want… I'm asking you to let me try. Look, my parents are going out of town for a few days, I'll have the run of the kitchen. I want you to come over for dinner. I'll cook. We'll sit on the couch afterwards and hold hands and watch some ridiculous tearjerker movie—and that's all. Just… romance, in the traditional sense. I won't… there won't be anything you have to, uh, atone for afterwards. Will you… can we try?"

Kurt took a breath and wiped his eyes. That… sounded wonderful. It also sounded very much like the kind of promises he'd made to himself in the past, only now Blaine was making them too—and there was something… terribly sad about that. "Yes," Kurt said softly, hesitantly, his voice soft and hoarse. He cleared his throat and tried again, because, sad or not, he wanted whatever part of Blaine he could get. "Yes, I'd love to."

Blaine sighed gustily, as if he'd been holding his breath. "I… good. Okay. Good."

"I love you, Blaine," Kurt said, curling up around himself, clutching his phone. "I really do."

"I know. I know, Kurt."

Blaine lost himself in cooking, completely absorbed by whatever he was doing in the moment. It was strange, to be able to look at Blaine while his intense focus was on something else—voyeuristic, almost, like he was spying, and with a weird, ridiculous, but undeniable undercurrent of jealousy; he was fairly sure this was the first time he'd ever been jealous of… shrimp. Kurt offered to help once or twice—offers that were politely rebuffed—and then he subsided, perched on a barstool in the corner of the kitchen, sipping water with lime and just… watching.

He honestly didn't remember much of dinner, which was a pity, because the bits he did remember—ginger prawns that were sweet and fiery, and some kind of arugula-pancetta salad—were amazing. Mostly he watched Blaine, Blaine who barely looked at him, who only talked to him to ask him if he wanted more or if he needed a refill on his water or to please pass the pepper. Blaine's fingers touched his when he handed the pepper across the table, and both of them jerked back at the same time, landing the pepper-mill on its side, rocking loudly until Blaine picked it up. Kurt looked at Blaine then and saw his mouth twisted wryly and he almost—almost—laughed, but in the end everything was too fragile, too… tenuous for laughter.

After that, he was very careful to keep his hands to himself. He minded his manners, he ate his dinner, and he absolutely did not think filthy thoughts about what it might be like to fuck Blaine in such a gorgeous kitchen. The dinner was delicious; he knew that much. It was also excruciating.

Afterwards, after compliments and thanks politely given and just as politely received, there was a super-polite tug-of-war over doing the dishes, which ended with Kurt washing the things that couldn't be loaded into the dishwasher while Blaine dried them and put them away. When they were done and the kitchen was pristine, sparkling, Kurt dried his hands on a dishtowel and then stood there squeezing it, squeezing it the way his heart felt squeezed, knowing the words he was going to have to say. He took a deep breath, and said them. "Blaine, I'm sorry, but… I don't think this is going to work."

"No, it isn't," Blaine agreed calmly, although there was nothing calm about his expression, which looked… tortured. "Not at all."

Kurt dropped the dishtowel and stepped closer to Blaine, as close as he dared given that Blaine still wouldn't look at him. "What am I doing wrong?" he asked quietly. "What do I need to—"

"Nothing—God, Kurt, you're not doing anything wrong, okay? It's me." Blaine looked at him then, wide-eyed and sad. "I don't… it seems I'm not very good at, um, compartmentalizing, because trying to… limit this, trying to find the right thing to say when nothing seems right, trying to put the parts that are suitable here and shove away the parts that aren't there… it feels like trying to cut myself in half." He turned away, walked to the small marble island where they'd eaten dinner, then sat down and rested his face in his hands. "I was an idiot, thinking I could do this. You should probably go. I'm sorry."

"I don't want to go," Kurt said immediately, grabbing the counter and holding tight to it when his hands started to shake. "I don't want to go, and I don't want half of you, or bits of you, or whatever parts of you are suitable—God…" He hadn't thought of it that way before, but… yes. It was true—that was exactly, precisely, what he was doing himself when he made all those promises out of sheer desperation—and the thought of Blaine doing it, doing that same thing, was… terrible. He let go of the counter and took a step towards Blaine. "I just… I just want you."

Blaine rubbed both hands down his face and looked at him, his face drawn, tired… and careful. "I'm not going to… Kurt. I can't… we can't—"

Kurt reached out and took one of Blaine's hands in his own, rubbing his thumb gently between the first two knuckles. "Then… let's find out what we can do."

The first time Blaine kissed him was a shock—they'd never kissed lying down before, and it was… different, it was very different, being laid out in Blaine's wide, white bed. They were fully clothed but for their shoes, with Kurt on his back and Blaine lying next to him, not even touching anywhere except for mouths and one hand each, fingers laced together and resting on Kurt's chest. It was… sweet, so sweet it made his chest ache. It was intimate. It was safe. And it was wonderful.

The other thing that was different was that there was time, now—time to go slow. Blaine kissed him like he had years to do it in; patient, thorough kisses that weren't a preamble to anything but instead were the goal in and of themselves, each one complete and whole and lovely. Kurt caught himself humming a little, very softly, and made himself stop, only thirty seconds later he'd started up again, so finally he decided to just let it go. Blaine touched his face, his hair—just a little, just enough that with his eyes closed Kurt never knew when the next touch was going to come or where it would land, and when it did he melted just a bit more, both of them sighing.

He was sinking—in the soft comfort of the duvet, in the warm, wet softness of Blaine's generous mouth, in the matched rhythm of their heartbeats that he could feel—his own in his throat, Blaine's in his wrist, under his thumb. Blaine was amazing and incredible and irresistible and Kurt sank without a murmur, went under with nothing but gratitude, only then Blaine tilted his head a little, just a quarter inch, no more, and on the next kiss their mouths fit together in a new way, a way that resonated like a suddenly-struck bell, a way that sent a twist of white-hot heat right through him and down to his toes—

"What?" Blaine pulled back from him blinking, his pupils so wide his eyes looked black. "Kurt—what—what happened, did I hurt—"

"No," Kurt said, squeezing Blaine's hand. "It was—it's nothing, you didn't hurt me, please—don't stop, okay?

"Kurt, talk to me—"

"Kiss me." He lifted his head and went for Blaine's mouth, and Blaine opened for him—hesitantly at first, then relaxing by slow degrees, following him down and down until they were right where they'd been before, only now when Blaine's tongue slipped and rubbed over his own Kurt had to lock down on a flood, a torrent of images that went through his head and sent shockwaves through his heart and his body, until he was hard and sweating and starting to gasp.

"Kurt—" Blaine was shaking, a fine, light tremor that Kurt felt everywhere. "You're… fuck. You're so fucking beautiful—"

Blaine gasped when Kurt rolled on top of him, rising up to his knees and swaying there, undoing the buckles on his vest and yanking it off, trying not to grind down on the hardness he could feel under him. He unknotted his tie slowly, shivering as he pulled it free. He took one of Blaine's hands off his knee and pressed the tie into it, folding Blaine's fingers around it, and then held out both of his own hands wordlessly, crossed at the wrist, palms up.

"Oh," Blaine said, something flashing in his eyes and then gone, but Kurt didn't pretend not to feel the half-suppressed twitch, the leap of tension in the body under him. "Kurt—"

"You were right," Kurt said breathlessly. "I can't cut it off, I can't be half a person."

"Kurt, I promised… I can't—please, don't ask me if you're just going to—"

"Blaine, I can accept anything, as long as you love me." His voice cracked on the last words, but he pressed on anyway. "You were right about that, too." He squeezed Blaine's waist with his knees, just a little. "So… please." He held out his wrists again. "Love me?"

Blaine closed his eyes, biting his bottom lip. "Fuck," he said. Kurt watched him. He was rubbing the tie, moving his thumb back and forth across the weave in a way that made Kurt's stomach flutter. Blaine opened his eyes then, and Kurt met them, his breath high and thready, his heart pounding. "Love you, Kurt," Blaine said hoarsely. "Way too much."

The soft, cool silk sliding over his wrists made him moan.

Blaine left him on top, tied his wrists together and then to the headboard, and once he stretched out, got strong legs in between his own and pushed him wide—so wide he had no leverage at all, nowhere to go except… where he was: floating, immobilized.

"Blaine," Kurt gasped, "I can't… I really can't move."

"Mmm," Blaine's hand slid into his hair and curled to a fist, turning his head a little and then going right for his ear. "Want me to let you go?"

"God… no."

"Okay." He bit Kurt lightly on the side of his neck. "Guess you'll just have to trust me, then."

Blaine kissed him hard, nipping his bottom lip until he shivered. Kurt's hips bucked helplessly, and Blaine's hands slid down his back to his ass, grinding them together and working them against each other until Kurt cried out. Then he stopped.

"Don't stop, don't—"

"Shh," Blaine said, two fingers sliding across his swollen, wet lower lip. "Open up."

Blaine sighed when Kurt sucked on his fingers, rocking their hips together slowly, luxuriously; like they had all the time in the world. "On second thought," he breathed, "I take back the 'shh'—please, make all the noise you like."

Kurt moaned around Blaine's fingers, then went stiff and pulled against the soft silk around his wrists when Blaine got a hand between them and undid his jeans. Blaine worked his pants down just a little, one-handed, then pulled his fingers out of Kurt's mouth and slid them right down the crack of his ass, slipping lightly over and around his hole while Kurt heaved on top of him.

Blaine hummed deeply and kissed him again, one hand under his ass to grind them together, the other rubbing him right where he was tenderest with light, teasing touches. Kurt's spine twisted and his neck arched and he hung there, gasping and twitching, needing more of everything, needing to move, biting his lip once Blaine pulled back from his mouth.


Blaine's fingers circled his hole lazily, deliberately. "Hmm… I thought this was more."

"It's not enough, it's not—God, please, I need—"

"You know I'm going to fuck you, right?" Blaine murmured in his ear, and Kurt closed his eyes and came hard, just like that, soft little cries escaping him while he writhed and shuddered and rolled his way through it.

Blaine kissed him until he was quiet, and untied him at some point—"Just for a while," Blaine told him when he tried to hang onto the tie. Everything was hazy and heavy and warm, and Kurt didn't move when Blaine stripped him, only sighed and panted and twisted against the sheets when Blaine took his time petting him anywhere—everywhere.

Blaine's sweet, dangerous mouth on his nipples made him hard all over again, and would have made him come if he hadn't just done so. The slow dip of Blaine's tongue in his navel made his balls draw up tight to his body, his hips shuddering, and the bites that followed in a curved line up to his neck left him a rocking, moaning mess, so turned on it felt like he was vibrating.

He blinked hard in an attempt to get his eyes to focus when Blaine took his own clothes off, drinking in the sight of him greedily. It seemed so miraculous—there was light here, and space, and time, and his heart was thumping hard and his belly was full of butterflies and Blaine was so, so beautiful.

"Thank you," Blaine said quietly, which was the first clue Kurt had that he'd been talking out loud. Blaine pressed him onto his back and straddled his chest, stretched Kurt's wrists high, high up above his head, then pinned them to the soft duvet with one hand while using the other to guide his cock into Kurt's open, moaning mouth. It was a tease, a terrible, brief tease of shallow, languid thrusts that barely used his mouth at all, although Blaine sighed softly and moaned low in his throat like it was all he wanted—because he was a fucking tease.

Kurt licked salty slickness off his bottom lip when Blaine pulled back, swallowing and shivering. "You can… Blaine—you can come in my mouth, fuck my mouth—"

"Huh," Blaine said, gazing off into space as if he were considering it, as if the thought had not actually occurred to him until that very moment. "I could, yes," Blaine said cheerfully, beaming down at him with a gorgeous smile. "Thanks for noticing that."

Kurt managed to half-stifle the whimpering sound he made, and decided—fine, if Blaine wanted to be a total laissez-faire dick about it, he would just have to play stoic. He would just be… really, really stoic. But that turned out to be horrible timing on his part, because that was when Blaine decided to bring the tie back for an encore, trussing his wrists together behind his back and then rolling him face-down with his legs spread wide.

Stoic went by the wayside, unlamented. "Are you going to fuck me?" His voice was raw, throaty, and his hips were already moving, humping the duvet.

"Oh, yes," Blaine said quietly, breath stirring the hair on the back of his neck, making his skin prickle everywhere. "But not just yet."

Kurt moaned when Blaine bit the back of his thigh, hissed when Blaine scratched blunt nails over the backs of his knees, gasped when Blaine sucked hard between two knobs of his spine just below his waist—and then cried out high and helpless with all his muscles locked when Blaine licked his ass, soft, teasing licks that made him throb everywhere, that made his bound hands open and close, over and over.

His eyes stung, welling up, so he closed them. "Blaine," he said, unable to stop himself from spreading further, choking on everything that was rising up in him. "That's… you… it feels like you're breaking my heart—"

"I won't do that," Blaine said soothingly, petting him, pulling his hips up, up so he was on his knees. "I won't. You can take this. Just… hold on."

Kurt held on. He turned his face into the pillow under his head and let it all come, tears and sobs and moans and also a bunch of words that he hoped he would never remember saying, swaying and rolling while Blaine's tongue worked him over. He held on through each flickering tease, each scorchingly intimate caress. He held on through heart-seizing waves of tender, vulnerable sweetness, and he held on through muscle-clenching, cock-pounding surges of whorish, slutty greed. He felt like he was glowing, defiled and sanctified at once.

Blaine's gasps for breath sounded tortured when he stopped, and Kurt lost any complaints he might have made in concern. "Blaine—what's… are you okay?"

"You're so fucking hot," Blaine told him, and the hands on his hips were trembling. "Sorry, just—I waited… I waited too long, and I really, really need to fuck you, right now, okay?"

"Okay—yes—please," was as far as he got before Blaine scrambled off the bed and attacked his bedside drawer. Kurt closed his eyes and breathed, and he was quiet, twitching and shaking a little, but quiet until Blaine got back behind him.

Blaine went fast—much, much faster than Kurt expected. Blaine… pushed, opening him up with terrifying speed, one finger then more then more and barely any time to adjust in between, and nothing hurt but it… stretched, and he had so many nerve endings back there that were firing off crazy messages to the rest of his panting, jerking body, and when Blaine slid over his prostate for the first time he pressed his face into the pillow and yelled, his hips bucking helplessly.

After that it seemed like mere seconds before Blaine hauled him up to sit back on his knees, one hand on his shoulder (very necessary, since Kurt really didn't think he could keep himself upright at that point) and one still in him, still inside until it slipped out and Blaine slipped in, just a little just a bit of him but he felt fucking huge, and Kurt let his head fall back against Blaine's shoulder and panted at the ceiling.

"Oh, fuck," he said quietly, his voice high and shaky. He sank back and sank back and felt Blaine's hard cock glide over that spot in him that made all his nerves fire at once and he gasped, rolling his hips and arching and pulling on his silk-bound wrists and he was—

Blaine's sudden, fierce grip around the base of his cock cut him off, stopped him cold. "Don't come," Blaine growled low in his ear. "I swear, if you come I'm going to… I'll lose it, so… not yet."

Kurt closed his eyes and bit his lip, pushing his head back hard into Blaine's shoulder. "I don't think… I can help it," he said, shuddering around the need pooling in his balls, his cock, his lower belly. "I just… this feels so good—"

"I'm going to fuck you," Blaine told him, his voice rough and deep. "And you're not going to come until I do." There was no give, no room, nowhere to go with that, and then it got harder when Blaine bent him back down, pressing him into the pillows and then leaving him there to pant and twitch and moan ceaselessly while Blaine squeezed his hips and really let him have it, fucking him harder and faster until everything was exploding—except him. He hurt from not-coming and he hurt from how good Blaine felt inside him, an ache that was like a cramp that was like a rhythm that was like coming oh God… Kurt jammed his face into the pillow and held on, whispering 'please come please please come' under his breath over and over until the words didn't even make sense any more.

Blaine slowed down, and first that was terrible and then it was wonderful because Blaine was hitching, his rhythm stuttering and ragged and falling apart and his breathing was turning to deep half-groans that sounded like he'd been wounded and—

"Kurt," Blaine said, sinking all the way into him and staying there, rocking into him, jerking, gasping. "Fuck, Kurt, I'm—"

Blaine pulled out of him.

"Blaine!" Kurt's whole body spasmed, and he pulled on his wrists hard enough to hurt but Blaine was untying him anyway, untying him and flipping his boneless body over and shoving his thighs apart and sliding back into him with one hard, delirious thrust that made Kurt moan and buck and put his newly-liberated hand in his mouth to bite down on something so he wouldn't come all over the place.

Blaine went slowly, too slowly; there was too much time to feel every exquisite second of drag and friction and pressure and dizzying goodness, it was too-much and too-good and Blaine was right there, their faces only inches apart. Blaine looked wrecked and sweaty and… vulnerable and sexy and his bottom lip was chewed and trembling a little. "Kurt…"

Face to face. They didn't do this, face to face—all of a sudden Kurt didn't have to worry about trying not to come because all he had room to worry about was trying to hide. He put both his hands over his face—he'd been crying and he was sweaty and bitten and he'd begged so hard and behaved like the world's biggest fucking slut—

"Kurt," Blaine said, moving in him gently, rocking in him, tugging his hands down. "Don't… don't hide, okay?"

"Shut up," Kurt said, his voice tense and tight, trying to shove his face into the curve of Blaine's neck. "Just shut up and fuck me and come—"

"I will," Blaine said, "but I needed, I wanted to see you—you've never been more… I've never loved you more than I do right now. I just wanted you to know that."

"Shut up," Kurt said again, crying, crying hard, hanging onto Blaine's neck like his life depended on it, when all he wanted to do was shove him away.

Blaine kissed him, and Kurt kept crying. Blaine squeezed his thighs and spread him wider and moved in him like they were both made of glass and could break, sighed into his mouth and fucked him so tenderly that Kurt gasped through his tears and got lost, release feeding into release and when Blaine shuddered like a racehorse and jerked deep inside him he came immediately, sliding over the edge and still crying and fucking himself on Blaine's twitching cock like he'd never get enough of it.

Blaine scrubbed him down in the shower, dried him off, then brushed his hair back with endless soft, delicious strokes of a silver-backed hairbrush. Kurt let Blaine lead him back to bed, let himself be wrapped up and held, Blaine's warm breath soft against his neck.

Then it was quiet, for a long time. He was exhausted, but not sleepy, because there was a sense of… waiting, something suspended, something not done. He didn't know what it was, only then he did and a streak of fear flashed through him, making him shiver.


He turned in Blaine's arms, so they were face to face. He spent what felt like a long time staring into Blaine's eyes, watching for… something, only he didn't know what. But his heart sped up and his breath caught and he swallowed, twice, quickly, and then his throat relaxed, and he could talk.

"I like it when you hold me down," he said softly, so softly that it was barely more than a whisper. "I like it when you… tie me. I like it when you tease me and play with me and bite me, and… and… I like it when you hurt me just a little bit." He stopped to breathe, light, panting breaths and he was already dizzy, but he pushed on. "I love your cock and I love being fucked and I like it when it's dirty, sometimes. I love sucking you. I love making you come. I love it when you make me come—even if you make me wait. Especially if you make me wait." He choked up on that last part, then swallowed and kept going. "I like… a lot of things that don't really fit with who I thought I was… but. That's… who I am, Blaine." Something in his chest glowed red-hot. "It's not who I thought I… who I thought I should be, maybe, but it's who I am." One more breath, all the way down to the hot core of him. "Do you still love me?"

"Yes," Blaine said, his eyes wet and his hands shaking when they came up to cup the sides of his face. "Oh my God yes I do, so much, Kurt—I love you so, so much."

Kurt let out a breath that it felt like he'd been holding… well, approximately forever. He closed his eyes, and rubbed his cheek into Blaine's warm, strong palm. "Okay," he said quietly, hoarsely, then opened his eyes and looked at Blaine, who was looking at him, face to face. "That seems like a good place to start."


Author's endnotes: Wow! Yet another story about intimacy! What a shocker!

But seriously: since This Black Garden was kind of an extreme characterization fantasy piece, I wanted to see if I could write some Kurt/Blaine kink that was a bit more organic and rooted in a more canonical characterization—a story about both of them, together, discovering aspects of a shared and complementary radical sexuality (AWWWWWW…) Thank you for reading this, if you did—I actually had a really good time writing it.

Which leads me to one last thing about this story: this is the one where Mairead (aka the other half of my brain which is not Aristide) woke up. She's been mostly dormant for a long time, and it was… really good to have her back. In a dark, twisted kinda way :-)