Title: Blame It On Insecurity
Summary: Blaine does not like blaming things on alcohol. A conversation between Kurt and Blaine during BIOTA.
Disclaimer: No ownership here.
Warnings: this particular episode is itself is a warning, I think.
A/N: So, I've been reading a whole bunch of BIoTA fic, and it reminded me of my own half-finished one from long, long ago after the episode had just aired. I picked it up, dusted it off, and added an ending (and that seemed to have jolted the big block in my mind free, because I've suddenly been writing page after page of Left Over. Good god, that story has been giving me trouble. Expect an update soon, though!). When I wrote this, I was absolutely positive that Blaine and Kurt had managed to at least talk before that final, disappointingly-flippant scene. Blaine was too cheerful at the end to still have been in a fight with his best friend, and Kurt seemed to be taking the whole thing more seriously than he had during the fight. Also, I hated the idea that Kurt only talked to Blaine again after Blaine decided he was gay, and not bi—it just didn't sit right with me. So, I wrote this after the episode, and have decided to post it now. Hope you enjoy!
They call each other up immediately the next day, because Blaine likes to think they're both responsible, mature young men and can handle a fight in an equally responsible, mature way; and because the conversation wasn't over and if they don't continue it now they won't ever be able to pick it up again; and because talking on the phone means that if he cries, Kurt can't see it. They agree to meet for coffee after Warblers' rehearsal in polite, wary tones, and then they hang up. Blaine does not spend the next three hours composing speeches to Kurt in his head about tolerance and betrayal of trust and how much Kurt's face that afternoon had reminded Blaine of his father's after he told him he was gay.
They enter the coffee shop with all the eagerness of prisoners of war. Kurt softly offers to buy their drinks. He stands in line. Blaine grabs a table and tries to figure out how to start the conversation.
Then Kurt sits down and tells Blaine about his brief period of lunacy that was his dating Brittany, and the conversation has started.
They discuss bisexuality and biphobia, and what it means for them if Blaine is bi (Blaine is adamant it doesn't change anything. Kurt is sure that no matter what Blaine thinks, it does. Kurt is sure of other things, too, but they manage to reason out what they can. The rest Blaine thinks will have to come later and only if Kurt is willing and wants to see things differently).
They discuss putting people on pedestals, presenting false truths to others, and the fact that no one ever knows how to get their shit together, they only know how to hide the mess from other people (Kurt tells him about his dad and Carole Hudson and the teachers at McKinley. Blaine tells him about the Warblers council and his mother and the teachers at his old school).
They discuss the difference between Karofsky's bullying and Kurt's painful words to Blaine, and they discuss the similarities (Blaine tells Kurt biphobia is homophobia. Blaine tells Kurt the outcome, the being-rejected-for-who-you-are gut-punch to the solar plexus is very much the same in both situations. Blaine tells Kurt it hurts more coming from someone you trust, whose opinion you value. Blaine does not tell Kurt about his father).
They discuss the drawbacks of Blaine's reliance on metaphors to express what he wants to say.
They discuss "we've always been completely honest with each other" and how that makes arguments even more painful.
Blaine nurses his lukewarm coffee between his hands when the discussion pauses, and considers whether they've finished talking about it or not. He gets why Kurt could be angry at him for experimenting with Rachel. Rachel might get hurt and Kurt probably doesn't appreciate that Blaine is experimenting with Kurt's friends (although Blaine likes to consider Rachel a friend of his, too, and it's not like he knows all that many girls aside from her and Mercedes. It also wasn't like Blaine chose to kiss Rachel, or even chose to enjoy it. But these are things that he and Kurt have just discussed and that he's already apologized for and bringing it up again does nothing but crowd his brain). He also gets where Kurt's views on bisexuality are coming from now, knowing that Kurt's own "experimentation" manifested as an excuse to deny who he was and hide in the closet (and that's something he will have to slowly change Kurt's mind about later). What Blaine doesn't get is how Kurt could have so little trust in him that he would immediately assume that Blaine going out with Rachel was the same as Kurt going out with Brittany—or that it would even cross Blaine's mind to do something like that at all. Blaine tells this to Kurt.
"It's more complicated than that," Kurt says, hesitantly. He draws himself inward a little, and it's like Blaine can see him visibly putting up walls. Blaine frowns and grabs his hand to try to stop him (he doesn't think about the fact that this is the first time he's touched Kurt since Valentine's).
"Complicated how?" he asks, and if he's being pushy, it's only because he desperately wants to know why Kurt is not telling the truth for once.
"Have you ever even seen When Harry Met Sally?" Kurt asks. Condescension paints his words.
Blaine does not admit to Kurt that since Valentine's Day, all three times Blaine has popped it into the DVD player he's paused it four minutes into the movie. He does, however, let go of Kurt's hand, because it obviously wasn't doing anything to stop the snark.
"Aren't they friends for most of it?" he asks quietly. Kurt looks at him and Blaine can't read the expression. He looks at the lid of his coffee cup instead, because hot and caution are the only things his brain can register at the moment. "I don't want to screw this up," he says.
Kurt doesn't talk for a while, but when he does, he melts a little. Blaine can tell because his voice is liquid when he says "Maybe we should talk about what you mean by that." He raises his eyes from the coffee cup to Kurt: proud, wary, slightly frustrated Kurt. Blaine takes a deep breath and lets it out slowly.
"Honestly?" he says, and then grimaces slightly at the phrasing. He bites his lip.
He can just say everything, right now, if he wants to. He can gather up some courage and tell Kurt a story about two boys who meet up at a coffee shop every day like it's part of an Unspoken Agreement. He can tell Kurt about how the Agreement extends to anything and everything, because it's the knowledge that no matter what happens—no matter how much of a ridiculous failure a Warbler's Gap Attack ends up being, or how oblivious a boy is to what kind of signals he's sending his best friend, or how more-than-a-little-drunk one of them might have been at a particular party a few nights ago—no matter what, they had this Unspoken Agreement that made it all okay. It didn't matter what either of them did, because they would always be there for each other no matter what. He can tell Kurt about how if the boys start dating, the agreement will change; how what is now a safety net of Total Acceptance Even When You Screw Up becomes a spiked pit of Here's My Heart, Please Don't Let It Shatter. But he doesn't. Because Blaine isn't ready for Kurt to start taking things like a date with Rachel Berry as a call to arms.
Because Blaine really needs a safety net right now.
"I don't know," he answers instead. Kurt's face closes down and Blaine continues quickly before he loses him: "I really care about you, I mean that. I do. I just… I don't think dating is really essential for us right now. We have such a good friendship."
Kurt looks like his kitten has just been run-over (Blaine wonders briefly if he has any pets, because they've never talked about any). "So, when you say 'I don't want to screw this up', you mean you don't want to… screw up what we already have?"
Blaine winces and shrugs a little self-consciously. "I'm not asking you to wait for me or anything. But I just… I think we need each other as friends more than boyfriends. And besides: I need to figure this out before I make you promises I can't keep. If that's okay?"
Kurt gives him a searching look. Then, he leans forward and places his hand on Blaine's. Blaine looks at it in surprise—Kurt rarely initiates any kind of contact. Kurt half-smiles at him. "If a date with Rachel still hasn't convinced you of your monogamous sexuality, then you really must be confused."
Blaine looks at him beseechingly. "Can you not be so flippant about it, please?"
Kurt looks like he's physically pulling himself together. "Sorry."
"I… Look, I'm not saying I definitely am, and I never said I was going out with her—"
"It was just one date—"
"Why didn't you kiss her last night?"
Blaine stills. "Did she tell you about it?"
"I may or may not have come over to help clean her basement in an effort to perform a little reconnaissance."
He looks at Kurt, feeling helpless. "I mean, I was all for the date when she asked me, but…" He looks down at his coffee cup to avoid seeing the expression he knew was going to be on his friend's face. "Is it stupid to say that, after yesterday, I really wasn't sure if I wanted to know anymore?"
"…After our fight?"
"Yes," Blaine admits. He shrugs awkwardly, feeling ridiculous. "It's stupid. I just…"
Kurt is silent, and Blaine has to look up eventually because he doesn't know what the silence means.
When he does, Kurt meets his gaze and something complicated is in his eyes.
"I really want to tell you to just accept that you like boys and be done with it," he says bluntly, and Blaine can't stop the flare of anger that squeezes his ribs (but they've talked about this already and if Kurt didn't listen the first and third and fourth time, he won't listen now).
"Liking boys isn't the issue," Blaine says anyway, taking care to keep his voice calm. "The question isn't whether I like boys—"
"'It's whether you're attracted to girls too', I know," Kurt doesn't roll his eyes, but his tone of voice betrays his desire to. Blaine is stuck between being exasperated and just being very tired. He wonders which one he'll end up with.
Kurt is looking at him again.
"I just don't understand," he says, for what may have been the tenth time. Blaine sighs (tired it is, then).
"I don't know how else to explain it to you." He holds his hands up emptily (his trusty friend the metaphor has not been working with him these past few days). "I don't… I felt something, and I just wanted to—want to—know." He shrugs again, feeling self-conscious, feeling like he's been put in a glass case in a museum: Blaine Anderson, Who Just Doesn't Know, Sorry To Disappoint.
"You're being serious," he says.
Blaine looks away and gives a firm look toward the window, because he really shouldn't glare at Kurt.
"If you… I mean, if you don't know, and you want to find out, Blaine, you… you should."
The awkwardness of the conversation, and of what Kurt is trying to say, settles in Blaine's stomach like a fit of nervous giggles. He tries to hide his face in his hand.
"Kurt," he groans. He mumbles into his palm about not needing permission (and silently measures how disingenuous said permission is, really, when the person giving it doesn't believe in what he purportedly permisses). "But thank you for granting it anyway."
Kurt sniffs, and shifts awkwardly in his chair, and they sit in silence for a few minutes more until Blaine decides this is the furthest they're going to get today.
He scrapes his chair as he stands, and Kurt looks up (still all lines of complicated and conflicted), and Blaine can't quite smile, but he isn't frowning either.
"Look, we'll have to deal with this if it turns out I am. And I don't think either of us really wants to keep talking. Um. Just, think about it."
Kurt nods. "Oh, I'll do plenty of thinking," he says. Blaine can't decipher his tone.
"I'll see you at school tomorrow," he says, and it sounds more like a question than the firm restatement of amicability he means it to be. Kurt gives him a smile, odd and mysterious but, none-the-less, genuine. He looks quite content to stay where he is for a few seconds longer, so Blaine picks up his bag and adjusts the strap on his shoulder; wishes Kurt a nice day and receives the same in kind back; and leaves.
Blaine isn't angry anymore (it's more of a muted frustration), and he's not quite as hurt (because they're talking again, and he understands a little, now), but he's still just shy of terrified about what Kurt will think if he does end up being bi. Blaine considers terms like blindsided and betrayed, words he hadn't let himself use in their conversation in hopes of not letting it lead into another angry confrontation. As it is, he doesn't really know how successful this talk was. He can't tell if he's gotten anything through to Kurt, or if Kurt is just humoring him because he wants to stay friends.
Blaine wants to stay friends, too.
Blaine really wants to stay friends.