Yes this took forever. Yes I am very sorry. Yes I will start the next chapter today or tomorrow and get it out soon because I actually have time now that it's summer.

Basically, whenever I had time to write, I had writer's block. Whenever I didn't have time, I didn't have writer's block. Plus, I've gotten addicted to a swarm of new shows and tumblr is always distracting. 5 months is a ridiculously long time not to update and I really am sorry from the bottom of my heart.

This chapter (and the next one or two) take place for the most part around Christmas.

A quick summary of what happened in the last chapter: Kurt finished telling Blaine about his past and then went home for the weekend. When he returned he heard Blaine tell Wes and David that he was interested in Kurt, which led Kurt to realize that he had feelings to Blaine.

A/N: I do not own Glee.


Chapter 20

I sat down on the cold grass, and looked into the stars, hoping by some small chance that they would give me guidance. I had fallen for Blaine. I didn't know what to do.

Should I tell him? Should I leave it? Should I ignore these feelings and continue to be Blaine's friend – best friend, my mind supplied happily – or should I let them stay, and maybe do something about them? Usually, I would keep them quiet, but knowing Blaine liked me – me! – that changed things.

Closing my eyes, I imagined us being together. I had no doubt that we would be happy together. Knowing Blaine, he would make me feel loved and appreciated every minute of the day. He would continue to support me. He would reassure me. He would make me smile. He would defend me, even if I was wrong. He would surprise me. He wouldn't judge me. He would make me feel perfect. He would be everything that I needed, and hopefully I could give that in return.

But what if something happened? I loved the friendship that I had with Blaine. He was always there for me when I needed him to be. He went above and beyond my expectations for what friends would do. Maybe some of that had to do with his feelings for me, but I was sure that it also had something to do with Blaine himself. I didn't want to mess up what we had. I didn't want us to stop talking if something happened that caused us to end the relationship.

The idea of trusting Blaine enough to go into that kind of relationship scared me. I trusted Blaine with everything, but being alone on a date? Last time I was on a "date"... The intimacy of a relationship seemed threatening to me. I had no desire for any of the physical side of a relationship – not even kissing. Not anymore. Blaine was so much more confident than me in that area. He would want to kiss, and possibly go farther. Even if I wanted to, I couldn't give that to him right now.

And what if he only liked how I was now? I had been debating whether or not I restart my Vogue subscription. I missed listening to show tunes and Lady Gaga. Listening to whatever was on my iPod now was torture. What if Blaine wasn't interested in any of that?

But Blaine – dear, sweet Blaine – wouldn't care about that, would he? He wouldn't break up with me just because I wasn't comfortable with kissing him. He would just hug me more frequently and hold me a little bit tighter and cuddle me for longer. He would let me decide the pace.

I had no idea what to do.

I got back to the dorms with just a half hour left before curfew. I had spent a long time on the crest thinking about everything, and still had not come to a decision.

"Kurt!" I heard Blaine call as I was unlocking my dorm.

I paused in my motions. I had hoped to avoid Blaine to give myself more time to think about my situation. I had no idea how I was going to act.

"Hey! I heard from one of the Warblers that you got back. You should have come to see me. I've been looking for you!" he said, as he came up and stood beside me. Out of the corner of my eye, I saw his hand reach up, then fall back to his side, as if he wasn't sure whether or not he should touch me. "Kurt? Are you okay?"

"Fine," I said, looking up at him for the first time. He looked confused, possibly worried.

"Where were you?" he asked.

"I went for a walk," I replied quickly. I placed my hand on the doorknob.

"Oh," he mumbled, his shoulders dropping.

"Listen, I had a long drive. I'm going to turn in now," I said, opening my door and slipping through.

"Goodnight!" I heard Blaine call as I shut the door, catching a quick glimpse of his hurt expression.

That probably wasn't the best way to handle that, I thought to myself as guilt settled in my stomach.


The next morning, I was standing in front of my bathroom mirror debating on trying to style my hair or leaving it to fall flat, when there was a knock on my door.

Deciding that I wouldn't bother, I went to open the door. Once it was fully opened, I found Blaine standing there nervously, holding a tray of coffee cups and a bag from IHOP. He smiled nervously at me.

"Blaine?" I asked, dumbfounded.

"I brought you breakfast," he said quickly. "As an apology."

"For what?"

"Well, whatever it is you're mad at me for," he answered, shifting his weight from foot to foot. "I know I should know-"

"I'm not mad at you," I said, cutting him off.

"You aren't?"

"Of course not," I said.

Blaine sighed in relief. "I was worried after last night. You were acting weird towards me, and I couldn't think of what I did."

"It's not you, it was me."

"Kurt Hummel, are you breaking up with me?" Blaine questioned.

I chuckled. "Of course not." We weren't even dating yet, how could we break up?

Blaine grinned. "Well, I still have breakfast for you. May I come in?"

"Sure," I replied, moving aside to let him pass.

"I kind of got a bit of everything – pancakes, bacon, toast, eggs, hash browns, and some other stuff – because I didn't know what you'd be in the mood for. Desk or bed?"

"Bed is fine. You really didn't need to do this," I said.

"If David and Wes are mad at me, buying them food from IHOP is always works," Blaine said as he settled on my bed, leaning against the headboard, and began to take styrofoam containers out of the bag. "I figured I'd try it with you. Being as you weren't mad in the first place though, I'll have to try it next time you're mad."

"Who said I'll get mad at you?"

"I can do some stupid things, Kurt," Blaine admitted, passing me a coffee. "I usually don't notice if I'm hurting someone."

"Well, for future reference, coffee is a good first step," I said, holding up my coffee. "After that..." I paused, and thought for a moment. "Scarves."

"Scarves?"

I nodded. "Scarves," said more confidently. It was something old Kurt would have loved, but I had been admiring a few newly released scarves online.

"I have to admit that wasn't an answer I was expecting," Blaine said, taking a piece of bacon from one of the containers.

I shrugged, choosing to take a sip of coffee instead of answering. The taste of Non-Fat Mocha flooded my mouth. "You remembered my coffee order," I commented, sitting down next to him.

"Of course I did. So what was going on yesterday?" Blaine asked, nudging my shoulder gently.

"I-I don't know," I replied. I heard you say you were interested in me and then I realized that I felt the same and now I don't know what to do.

"I don't believe that," Blaine said gently. I took a bite of pancake from one of the boxes. "Is it about Friday? I promised I wouldn't tell anyone, and I plan to keep that promise."

"I know," I said. I glanced at him and found his hazel eyes looked on mine, showing traces of worry, promise, and what I thought was something similar to love. I didn't trust myself enough to keep staring into them, so I looked away. "It isn't about Friday. Thank you for that, by the way. Thank you for listening."

"Kurt of course," Blaine responded. "There's no need to thank me. I'm happy I was there. Anytime you need someone to talk to... I'm here for you."

"I know," I murmured. "Why on Earth did you get so much food for the two of us? Honestly, this could feed an army. Even Finn couldn't eat this much."

"I love leftovers," Blaine stated without questioning the change of subject. "Plus, Wes and David will never say no to food."

I chuckled as Blaine launched into a conversation about a movie he saw over the weekend.


Weeks passed, and before I knew it, it was the last day of school before Christmas.

I was on my way to my dorm to grab my suitcase before leaving, when I felt something hit my back forcefully. I jumped and turned around in surprise. I saw a group of Dalton boys throwing snowballs at each other.

"Sorry about that!" one of them called out to me. I had never seen him before. I assumed that this was the boy that hit me.

I raised my hand in acknowledgement, before continuing on to the dorms. Seeing Blaine's light on, I decided to visit him briefly before leaving for home.

"Hey Kurt!" he called, quickly setting a magazine down as I opened the door. "Come on in. Make yourself at home."

I slowly entered his room. "What are you reading?"

"Oh. Nothing," he said, shuffling the magazine so it was hidden from me.

I raised an eyebrow. "Blaine."

Blushing, he handed me the magazine. The top of the magazine read Vogue in a large, elegant font.

"I know it's stereotypical, but I swear it's a good magazine!" Blaine defended. "Please don't tell Wes and David. They'd never shut up about it. I don't have a fantastic fashion sense, so they'd find it especially hilarious."

I licked my bottom lip. How I used to love Vogue. I really missed the magazine. "Move over," I said with a fake confidence. When there was room on the bed for me, I sat next to Blaine and put the magazine between us. We were shoulder to shoulder, giving me a kaleidoscope of butterflies fluttering in my stomach.

"You read Vogue?" Blaine said excitedly.

"I used to. I haven't since..." I trailed off, looking at Blaine expectantly.

"Oh," Blaine mouthed. "I remember you mentioning it. Well, there's no time like the present to start up again," he said. "Now, the latest trends seem to be..."

I listened to Blaine talk for a while as we flipped through the magazine before deciding that it was time for me to head home. Somehow, our legs had ended up tangled together. I extricated my own, and headed towards the door, Blaine following close behind.

"I'll see you after break?" I suggested.

"If you're free, I'd love to see you during the break," suggested Blaine, wringing his hands out. Did he think that I'd say no?

I nodded, a faint blush appearing on my cheeks. "I'd like that," I admitted.

Blaine's face lit up. "Great! I'm staying here over Christmas, so-"

"What do you mean you're staying here?" I asked, cutting him off.

"My parents are away. They're somewhere in Europe," Blaine said. He was trying to act nonchalantly, but I could tell that he upset that his parents didn't want to spend the holiday with him. "I didn't see a point in spending Christmas in an empty house, and some other guys are staying at Dalton too. I don't really know them, but it's better to have company." I frowned. "Kurt, seriously. It's fine. I've spent Christmas alone before. It's better than having your parents try and change you by inviting girls over."

"That's not right."

Blaine shrugged. "I'm free all break. Save me some boredom and text me, okay?"

I smiled. "Of course."

He pulled me into a tight hug, "See you later Kurt. Have a good holiday."

I smiled. "I will. You too."

Blaine let go of me. "Now you head home. Your dad is probably worrying."

"Bye Blaine."

"Bye Kurt."


When I got home, I was greeted by my dad, who gave me a tight hug. "Hey kiddo," he said.

"Hi dad," I replied.

"Was the drive okay?"

"Yeah," I said. "Blaine's alone for Christmas," I blurted out without thinking.

"What do you mean? His family is away?"

I nodded slowly. "He was planning on staying at Dalton."

"Well that simply won't do," said Carole, entering from the kitchen. "Invite him over for the holidays! He can even sleep here if the two of you feel comfortable enough."

My dad quickly nodded in agreement. "We have plenty of room and we always have far too much food. No one should be alone on Christmas."

I smiled gratefully. "I'll invite him over," I promised. "Do you need any help with supper Carole?"

"Thank you for offering dear, but you can go unpack," Carole replied. "I'll call you when it's ready."


Later that evening, I abided by Blaine's request and texted him.

Hi! I got home safe and sound – Kurt

Great! :D – Blaine

I may or may not have mentioned to my parents that you would be alone for Christmas – Kurt

It's really not that big of a deal, Kurt – Blaine

Whether it is or isn't, they invited you to spend the holidays with us. – Blaine

As I waited for him to reply, my phone started to ring.

"Hello?"

"Kurt I am perfectly fine spending the holidays alone. I don't want to cut into time with your family. I appreciate the offer, but I can't accept."

"Don't be ridiculous, of course you can. My family wants you to join us."

"But do you?"

"I wouldn't have brought it up with them if I didn't want you here," I said sincerely. "I would love to have you over for Christmas. You're my best friend Blaine," I admitted. Although it was irrational – as I knew he considered me to be the same – I was still nervous of what his reaction would be.

"Kurt," Blaine murmured with more emotion than I could have imagined be used with such a small voice. "I- Wow, thank you, that really means- you're my best friend too and I'm not just saying that. That sounded so much less awkward in my head, I swear."

I laughed. "So what do you say, spend Christmas with us?"

Blaine was quiet for a few moments. "I would really love that. What time should I come?"

"If you wanted to, my parents said you just sleep over during the break."

"Like, for multiple days at a time?"

"Yes, if you wanted to."

"Would you feel comfortable with that though?" Blaine asked.

I bit my lip. "I don't know. It's ridiculous – I mean I've stayed over at your house-"

"But it was only one night and that's different," Blaine finished.

I sighed. "Yes."

"I don't mind only coming over for Christmas," he replied. "You're already doing so much, I don't want to impose and make you feel uncomfortable."

"I think I'd like to try it, though? If it goes well, I'd love to have you stay."

"If you ever ask me to leave I won't be offended," Blaine assured. "Thank you Kurt, this means a lot."

"You're welcome."

"When do you want me to come over?"

"Maybe tomorrow or the day after? Whatever works for you."

"Kurt, I have literally no plans over break, except singing at a shelter on Christmas with the Warblers. You decide the day."

"Maybe the day after tomorrow then, so I can have some time to get ready."

"That sounds perfect," Blaine replied. "I can't wait."

"Great! So I'll see you then?"

"Are you hanging up on me, mister? Just because we've made plans doesn't mean I want to stop talking to you," Blaine answered. "You can hang up if you need to go though, I'm not going to stop you. But yes, you will see me then."

"I don't need to go."

"Great! So what sort of Christmas traditions do you do?"


I spent the next day preparing myself to have a guest over for multiple days in a row. I was nervous about it, but it was an unnecessary feeling when I knew that Blaine would do his best to make me feel comfortable. I didn't know where the sentiment was coming from. Carole assured me that it was normal, but it still felt unnecessary.

My dad said I was allowed to have Blaine sleep in my room, but I chose to set up the guest room. If needed, it would give me a private place to spend some time alone if I felt overwhelmed. Knowing Blaine, it would also make him feel as if he wasn't imposing as much.

The next day Blaine arrived at around three. When I answered the door, he had a large smile on his face. One hand was dragging a large suitcase and the other was carrying a large pot of ruby poinsettias.

Taking the flowers from him, I said, "What are these for?"

"It's a 'thank you for letting me stay' present. I would bring wine, but I'm too young to buy it, so flowers it was. I figured roses or a bouquet weren't completely appropriate being as its Christmas, so poinsettias it was," Blaine explained. "I hope no one is allergic?"

"No! Carole was just saying earlier how she wanted to get some! She'll love these," I assured.

"Kurt! Shut the front door!" my dad called from the living room.

"Oh, come in," I added, moving aside to let Blaine pass.

Blaine smiled gratefully as I shut the door behind him. "Hi, by the way."

"Hi," I said quickly, a red tint settling on my cheeks. "We set up the guest room for you, I hope that's alright?"

"Sounds wonderful," Blaine said. "Hi Mrs. Hummel," he said, looking behind me. "Thank you so much for having me."

"It's Hudson, but you can call me Carole," she said smiling. "It's wonderful to have you over dear. Oh, these are lovely!" she exclaimed, noticing the large flowers in my arms. "You didn't need to get us anything."

"It was the least I could do," Blaine assured.

Carole took the flowers from my arms. "I'm going to put these in the kitchen. Thank you so much. It's very kind of you."

"Um, you can follow me so you can put your things in the guest room," I suggested nervously. Our house wasn't as nice as Blaine's. Even though he wasn't a very judgemental person, I worried over what he would think about my home.

Blaine, gratefully, ignored my slightly shaky voice and allowed me to lead him upstairs. His bedroom was next to mine with a bathroom between them. The bathroom was simple – only a shower, sink, and toilet – and would be shared between myself and Blaine.

The guest room was also very modest. Small, it had a double bed with plain cream sheets and a brown comforter with a leaf design. There was a side table with a reading light next to the bed. There were blankets stacked On top of the empty wooden dresser near the foot of the bed were extra blankets stacked in case the comforter wasn't enough.

"It's not much," I commented.

Blaine sat gently on the bed. "This is perfect. Thank you Kurt."

"Right! Well, I'll leave and let you unpack. You can put your things in the dresser if you want. My room is on the other side of the bathroom."

"I won't take long," Blaine said.

I nodded and went into my bedroom. This is weird, I thought to myself. This shouldn't be this weird.

There was a hesitant know on my door ten minutes later.

"Come in!" I called. Blaine poked his head in before carefully stepping inside. His eyes glanced around my bedroom. I nervously began to pick at the sheets on my bed.

"I like this. It's very sophisticated, very modern. It suits you," he said after a few seconds.

"Thanks," I said.

"Are you okay Kurt?" Blaine asked. "If you aren't comfortable with me being here, please just say so and I don't mind leaving."

"I'm fine, this is just weird, that's all."

"How so?" Blaine asked, gently sitting next to me on the bed.

"I don't know. It's new."

"Maybe we just need to break the ice?" he suggested.

"Maybe," I replied.

"May I?" Blaine asked, gesturing to my bookshelf.

I nodded and sat down on my bed as he looked through the titles. For the most part, Blaine was quiet, but every so often I he emitted an impressed noise. "We have similar tastes," he stated. "Although I must admit that there are some books I didn't know."

"I'm sure it'd be the same case if I went through your bookshelf," I said.

Blaine nodded in agreement. "Most likely. Kurt, is that what I think it is?"

"What?"

"Vogue: The Covers!" Blaine crouched down and began to pull it out.

"I thought I took that out of here, to be honest."

"I'm glad you didn't! I've been dying to have a chance to look through this!" Blaine got up excitedly and walked excitedly towards where I was sitting on the bed. "Move over."

Quickly shuffling over to give him room, Blaine jumped up on the bed and sat close beside me. "I guess we found something to do then."

"Wait, is this okay? Or do you want to do something else?"

"This is fine," I said.

We were flipping through the large hardcover when Carole called for dinner. Blaine's excitement was contagious. Within the first few pages, I began to talk just as excitedly as he was about the photographs.

"I still can't get over that 1911 cover. Absolutely stunning!" Blaine exclaimed. "The talent that takes place with that photography is astounding! People who say that photography isn't art need to take a look at that book."

"There are a couple really nice covers from the fifties that I think you'll adore," I replied. "I'll show you after supper."

"I'm just letting you know that if that book disappears I didn't take it."

I laughed. "I'll make sure to get it back from Finn then."

"Get what back from me?" We had entered the dining room. My dad and Carole were seated patiently at the table while Finn was eyeing the casserole hungrily. His hand slowly moved closer towards the serving spoon.

"Nothing," I said.

Finn tilted his head in confusion. I could see the wheels turning in his brain as he tried to figure out what we were talking about. After a few seconds, he shrugged. "Whatever. Hey dude," he greeted Blaine.

"Hello Finn," Blaine replied. Glancing over, he seemed perfectly calm, however I could feel him tense beside me.

"Sorry I attacked you," said Finn.

Blaine never replied. We took our seats at the table. Finn's hand shot quickly towards the spoon, as if someone was going to stop him from eating. He took a large portion before passing it to my dad. Immediately, he began to devour his plate.

"I hope you're okay with chicken casserole? It isn't anything too fancy," Carole said.

"It smells delicious Mrs- Carole. Thank you so much."

"It's nothing dear. Take as much as you want."

"So where are your parents travelling?" my dad asked.

"They're somewhere in Europe. I'm not entirely sure where," Blaine replied. "If I were to guess, it'd be somewhere extravagant like Paris or some rich resort in Switzerland. I really appreciate letting me stay with you for the holidays. I know it's a very family-oriented time. It means a lot that you would include me."

"It's no problem Blaine," Carole assured. "What are you two going to get up to?"

"I'm not sure," I said. "We'll probably watch movies, play board games, and that sort of thing."

"Can you make Christmas cookies Kurt?" Finn asked.

"No."

"I love your cookies!" Blaine exclaimed. "Can you make Christmas cookies?"

I rolled my eyes. "Child."

"Is that a yes?"

"Yes."

"Dude why is he nice to you?" Finn whined.

"Because he likes me," Blaine replied, grinning awkwardly at me.

Yes I did, I thought as I blushed. "Idiot."

"Meany."

"Do you want cookies or not?"

"Your majesty."

"Better."

Blaine stuck his tongue out at me and began to eat the casserole. "Carole this tastes incredible!" Blaine exclaimed.

"Thank you dear. It really isn't much though."

"Can I go over to Puck's for a video game marathon?" Finn asked as he got a second helping of casserole.

"Sure," Carole said. "Burt and I were thinking of playing Monopoly anyways."

"I am the best at Monopoly," Blaine said proudly. "I win every game I play."

I snorted. "Sure you do."

"You'd have a tough competition against Kurt," my dad said.

"I've won every game since I was six," I stated.

"I could beat you."

"Do you want to bet on that?"

"Winner gets to choose what movie to watch first and has to pay for coffee."

"Shall we shake on it?" I asked.

"We shall," Blaine said.

"Is there even a point in trying to play?" my dad asked Carole as we shook hands.


"A grande non-fat mocha and a medium drip please," Blaine said, fishing out money from his wallet.

I smirked as Blaine paid the barista. "Winning is divine."

"You were lucky," Blaine muttered. "That's all."

"I just have good technique."

"My technique was better than yours!" he retorted.

"Says the person who lost."

"Meany."

We sat down with our coffees at an empty table.

"So, Christmas shopping," I began. "I haven't gone shopping in a long time."

"You used to enjoy shopping, right?"

I nodded and took a sip of the coffee. It looked as if Blaine was about to respond when a small but stunning girl with long brown hair suddenly jumped on his lap. Blaine looked confused for a moment until he recognized the girl. His face lit up in joy and he hugged her tightly.

"Blaine! I haven't seen you in ages!" she exclaimed.

"Ella!" he responded excitedly, hugging her tightly. "How are you?"

"I'm alright," the girl, Ella, replied. "I'd be better if my gay best friend talked to me more often."

"I'm sorry, I've been really busy lately with school and Warblers," Blaine explained. "Whenever I try to call you you're busy! And you keep going away when I'm free."

"I know, it's a real pain. I'm here this break though, if you're free?" she asked.

"Oh!" Blaine exclaimed, turning to me. "Ella, this is Kurt. Kurt, this is Ella Bentley, my lovely ex-girlfriend."

I realized who this girl was. This was the girl that Blaine had come out to before anyone else. Although she didn't have a very good reaction, she redeemed herself after Blaine got attacked. She gave him a friend and helped him with his adjustment to Dalton.

She was very pretty. I could see why Blaine had liked her.

Her piercing green eyes laid on me. I felt like they could tell everything about me. "You're the one I texted at that party! Blaine is this..?"

Blaine's cheeks lit up like a Christmas tree. "Y-Yeah," Blaine stuttered. He looked embarrassed. If my assumption was correct, his crush had been festering longer than I'd thought.

"Oh," said Ella, eyes flicking between the two of us, a realization occurring to her. "Right. It's nice to meet you Kurt!"

"Y-You too," I replied. I shifted nervously as Ella sat in the seat between Blaine and me. I felt uncomfortable. Was it the fact that she assumed I was gay and exclaimed it loudly in public? Or did the feeling stem from having to meet someone new unexpectedly?

Blaine seemed to notice my nervous demeanor and brought her attention back to him. "What are you up to today?" he asked.

"Christmas shopping," Ella responded. "I should have started earlier, but I didn't. So here I am! You two?"

"Christmas shopping," Blaine answered.

"Maybe I could join you?" Ella suggested. "I don't mind if you say no," she added when I froze.

Blaine looked to me to make the decision. I appreciated the fact that he wanted me to be comfortable, but I could see how hopeful he was that I would say yes. After everything he had done for me, I couldn't say no, even though I would prefer to give a negative answer. I gave a tiny nod and Blaine beamed. If Blaine trusted her, than I could try to too.

Ella seemed very perceptive. I truly believed that Blaine hadn't told her anything about my past, yet I felt like she could tell what I went through. She smiled. "Thank you," she said to me. "I need to go get a coffee. I'll be right back!" And with that, she got up and went to the counter.

"Thank you," Blaine said appreciatively after a couple of minutes. "You didn't need to say yes-"

"It's fine," I replied quickly. I sipped my coffee. "You looked happy to see her."

"I am," Blaine replied. "I really missed talking to her."

"Aw, you're sweet," said Ella, returning to the table. "What are you doing this break?"

"I'm actually staying at Kurt's for Christmas," Blaine replied. "My parents are in Europe and I was alone so Kurt offered for me to stay over."

"That's really nice of you!" Ella said, smiling at me. "Would you mind if I stole him once or twice? You're welcome to join us if you want as well."

"Of course," I said.

"Where were you planning on shopping?" Blaine asked.

"I was planning on going to the mall and some of the shops downtown," Ella replied.

"That was our plan too," said Blaine. "Should we take one vehicle?" As he asked his question, he looked to me for confirmation that it was okay.

"We could use my Navigator," I suggested quietly.

"Why don't we take these to go and head to the mall?" Blaine said, gesturing to our coffee cups.

The three of us packed up our things and left The Lima Bean. I got in the driver's side. Blaine opened the passenger door for Ella and climbed in the backseat behind me.

"You can pick the music," I said to Ella as I began to drive towards the mall. A radio station playing top 40 music was on.

"This is fine," said Ella.

"Who are you buying for?" asked Blaine.

"My parents and a couple of friends. I need to buy for my aunt as well. I drew her name in the family's Secret Santa," said Ella.

"I need to get something for my parents," said Blaine. "I'll get something for Wes and David, and I drew Nick for the Warblers' Secret Santa. I have to buy things for some others as well. How about you, Kurt?"

"My dad, Carole, and Finn, of course. I need to buy for Quinn, Tina and Brittany. If I'm buying for Brittany I have to buy for Santana. There are a few others on my list too," I said. Such as Blaine, I thought. I don't know how I'm going to buy him a Christmas present if he's with me when I'm shopping.

"Kurt, did you know Blaine dressed up as a reindeer one Christmas and went around to different houses singing Christmas carols by himself one year?" Ella said innocently.

"Ella!" Blaine exclaimed as I chuckled.

"I believe it."

"Once he serenaded someone in the closet at the Gap with When I Get You Alone by Robin Thicke. They almost got fired."

"Would you shut up Ella?"

The drive to the mall continued with Ella telling stories that Blaine probably didn't want me to hear about. After the first few, I stopped holding back my laughter and let it flow out of me.

"I hate you," grumbled Blaine when I was parked.

"You love me," said Ella, putting a large kiss on his cheek. Even though I knew that Blaine was gay, the action made me feel a twinge of jealousy. They had dated at one point, after all.

We entered the mall and immediately began to visit stores, pushing through the crowds to find what we needed. I ended up finding a video game for Finn, a stuffed unicorn for Brittany, a set of pyjamas slash lingerie for Santana and a variety of eye shadows for Tina. I had been keeping my eyes open for things for Blaine but I hadn't spotted anything for him yet. Blaine had found everything he was looking for in the mall – a gift card for his mother, a tie for his father, and a video game for David – and Ella had found a most of her gifts as well.

I saw a couple things that I would have bought for myself had my past not stopped me. There was a soft greenish-blue scarf that would have gone stunningly well with my complexion. There was also a maroon scarf that would have worked perfectly for cold days as well. I didn't try it on either scarf though. There was also a stunning Alexander McQueen jacket for spring on sale for an excellent price. I didn't try it on because I knew that if I did I wouldn't be able to take it off. It was tempting though, and I'd probably regret it later.

We entered Macy's and I began to look through the dresses for Quinn. Ella helped me search through the racks until we found the perfect dress for her while Blaine searched throughout the store. I realized that I was really enjoying spending time with her. She was nice, witty, and had a bubbly personality that helped me forget my fears. She had plenty of stories about Blaine that he didn't want me to hear and a good sense of fashion. She ended up finding the dress that I bought for Quinn, along with a gift card for Carole.

We met Blaine outside the store.

"Looking for bow ties?" Ella asked. Blaine had mentioned the fact that he had a large bow tie collection, but I never imagined the extent. She had counted 143 bow ties about a year ago.

"All they had were traditional ones," he replied. Ella rolled her eyes. "Why can't they sell fun bow ties?"

"Fun bow ties?" I asked, an idea forming in my head.

"Ones with rubber ducks and lobsters and stuff instead of plaid or solid coloured bow ties," Blaine said. "That's all people have nowadays."

"Why would you wear a bow tie with lobsters on it?" Ella asked.

"Why not?"

"Weirdo."

They bickered playfully as we left the mall and went onto the streets downtown to finish shopping.

I found my dad a set of new tools for the garage as he had been complaining about his old ones not working as well anymore. We passed a fabric store on the way back to my car and I spotted a fabric with lobsters on the shelf.

"Can you distract Blaine?" I whispered to Ella as Blaine stopped to tie his shoe.

She nodded and walked over to him. "Blaine I'm hungry, buy me something."

"Buy yourself something," he retorted.

"No, come on," she said, dragging him towards a very busy bakery.

"Wait, Kurt-"

"You guys go!" I said. "I need to go to the washroom, and I just saw something perfect to go with Brittany's gift."

"Are you sure?" he asked.

"Go," I assured.

As Ella dragged him away, I slipped in the fabric store. I pulled out the roll of lobster fabric, as well as a fabric with small ducks, Christmas trees, puzzle pieces and lightning bolts. I bought a small amount of each fabric and put it in the bag with Quinn's dress, before sneaking out of the store and going into the toy store where I bought glitter pens for Brittany.

As I exited the toy store, Blaine and Ella returned with three muffins. Ella eyed me carefully, and I nodded to let her know I was successful.

"Thank you," I said, as Blaine handed me one.

"Are we all done?" asked Ella. "I've found everything."

"So have I," said Blaine.

I nodded. "Should we head back then?" I suggested.

"Sounds like a plan," Blaine agreed.

We returned to my Navigator. Ella and Blaine took the same seats they had before and I drove off in the direction of the Lima Bean where Ella's vehicle was stationed. After having spent the day with Ella, I felt far more comfortable, and I trusted that Blaine's trust in her was not misplaced. The two of them sang loudly - and purposely awfully - along to the songs playing on the radio.

I could tell Blaine was upset when he was saying goodbye to Ella. He hugged her tightly for longer than most friends would normally hug for. I could tell how close he was to her.

"Text me later, okay? We're meeting up more this holiday," he said.

"Of course!" Ella agreed. "I'll let you know when I get home and we can start to make plans. See you later Kurt! Blaine sleeps with a stuffed bear named Tony!"

"Ella shut up!" Blaine exclaimed.

"Bye," I called to her as she began to make her way back to the vehicle.

Blaine moved into the passenger seat and I drove off.

"So, why Tony?"

"Kurt," Blaine whined as I laughed. "It's named after Tony in West Side Story," he admitted. "It's one of my dream roles."

"Fair enough."

"Thank you Kurt," said Blaine.

"For what?"

"Letting Ella join us."

"I couldn't really say no," I joked. "But I liked her. You two really get along well."

"You did?"

"She was very pretty," I commented. "I can see why you dated her."

"I dated her because she had a kind heart, was fun to be around and wasn't prejudiced. I really didn't care how she looked," said Blaine firmly, "Being gay, after all."

He sounded hurt. Guilt swarmed my stomach. "I'm sorry." Should I say it? "I guess..." I paused. "I guess I'm just... jealous," I admitted, blushing.

"Jealous?" Blaine asked, looking at me confusedly. "Why would you be jealous?"

Change the subject. "We could watch West Side Story if you wanted to tonight."

Blaine eyed me carefully. "Sure."

I am an idiot.


Thank you all so much for your support. I know I'm awful at updating, so thank you for waiting and being patient.

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