The Stranger's Son
…Chapter Ten… Boulevard of Broken Dreams
Dr. Reed assessed Kurt studiously. She was by profession, a very patient woman. But Kurt had told her nothing except that there had been a boy in his school named Puck that he had liked and whom had been very popular. But now their session was almost ending and Kurt had their glossed over pained look in his eyes that she had seen so many times in so many of her patients and she knew they had a long way to go before she would get the chance to truly help him.
"Kurt? I would really like to see you again. I know we haven't made much progress this session but just the fact that you're brave enough to be sitting here is a huge step in itself." She paused. "I also want to give you my card. It has my cell number on it, so if for any reason, at whatever time, if you need someone I'm here."
Kurt looked up at her. The pain in his eyes was still obviously there but he gave her the slightest nod as she stood up. Kurt's eyes wandered to her shelf behind her and the look of pain on his face was suddenly replaced with a look of bewilderment.
"That photo…?" he said slowly; he had been sitting here for almost an hour and he couldn't believe he hadn't noticed it yet. He forgot how he tended to zone out completely when he was forced to mentally relive his McKinley days and not noticing this photo was a pure sign that he had indeed zoned out.
Dr. Reed turned to face the photo Kurt was referring to and when she saw it she smiled, "Ah, yes, I do love this photo. This man here is wonderful; a great friend and a renowned police officer…." Her face changed expression when she noticed that Kurt had closed his eyes. "Do you know this man, Kurt?"
Kurt sighed. Of course he knew the man. Granted, he hadn't realized that he was a cop when he'd met him though, but that would explain why Blaine had urged Kurt to tell him about what had happened to his room.
But that wasn't the only reason that Kurt was feeling uneasy. Because it wasn't just the man he had met before, it was the photo he had seen before too. On a nightstand in a stranger's room where he had jumped to the conclusion after seeing this particular photo that the man he had just slept with might have been straight.
And then he was forced to say something about the narrowness of the situation. Because if Alex and Dr. Reed had a copy of the same photo, it meant one thing—
"You're Blaine's mother."
Dr. Reed didn't hesitate. She reached for her phone and quickly paged her receptionist, eyes never leaving Kurt. "Hi Kathy. I'm going to need you to reschedule all of my today appointments."
When Blaine reached Alex's place, he wasn't surprised to see that his mom was already home. She was back from Boston indefinitely and he was kinda glad that she was around even if it meant she could be gone again at any time. She had such a calming aura about her and he never remembered how powerful it was until he was in her presence again.
"I hope you and Alex are cooking tonight," she said by way of greeting him.
"If you want," Blaine shrugged. He noticed she was wearing her business attire which she only did when she—
"Mom, were you at work today?"
She poured him a glass of orange juice, "Well, yes Blaine, I know I'm stationed a lot in Boston but I still have an office here and I still need to work. Dalton isn't free, you know."
But that wasn't what Blaine was thinking about. "But what about all the other doctors in the centre?"
"What about them?"
"Were they working today, too?"
"Yes, Blaine, it turns out that they also need to work."
Blaine relaxed slightly. Hearing this meant there was a chance Kurt had seen someone else. Blaine hadn't thought his mom would go to the office today when he recommended the place to Kurt so he didn't want to have to explain to him why he didn't explain that she worked there. Kurt was already in a delicate fragile state and needed to talk to someone and Blaine thought Kurt wouldn't have bothered to go if he knew Blaine's mom worked there.
"Is something wrong, Blaine?" Leanne asked skeptically.
Blaine walked over to the sink, washing out his empty glass. "Um, no it's okay, I just know one of the patients who came to see you today, but I know you can't talk about that, so let's not, okay?"
Leanne sighed. She hadn't intended to bring up Kurt with Blaine and she still wasn't going to because Blaine was right, she couldn't talk about it. But—
"Blaine honey, just because I can't talk to you about my patients, doesn't mean you can't talk to me about whatever is on your mind. You know that, right?"
And he did. And he really wanted to talk to his mom about Kurt and how he was falling for his teacher even though he knew it was wrong… but if he did, his mom would probably psycho analyze him and also probably want to get Kurt fired so… he didn't say anything because he above all else he couldn't risk his mom stop talking to Kurt because of conflict of interest. Kurt needed someone. And if it couldn't be Blaine at least it was with a professional that he trusted. So he just nodded.
"By the way," he added to Leanne, "you should totally see the new apron that Alex bought. It's so gay."
"Are you okay?" Sebastian asked, whispering quietly, as they were in class and he didn't want to get called out by their teacher for talking.
Blaine sighed, "Not really."
It had been a week. A week since Blaine had seen Kurt. Sure, they had talked on the phone and Blaine had recommended Kurt to the centre that his mom worked at, that he himself had gone to when he had been in a rough place, but that had been the day after the incident and since then Kurt hadn't been answering any of his messages or his calls. Blaine was worried. He hoped this had nothing to do with the fact that Kurt was angry with him for not telling him about his mom. But he didn't want to be paranoid because he knew Kurt just needed some time, but he couldn't deny to himself that there was an overwhelming desire in him that just wanted to be there for Kurt, next to him, protecting him, holding him, promising him that everything would be okay. And yet… he still he didn't want to show up at Kurt's apartment if he wasn't ready to see anyone yet. Of all people, Blaine knew what it was to want to be alone and if he pushed Kurt to see him that would only make him a hypocrite.
Sebastian felt bad too. Not for Kurt, he didn't much care for their new teacher and he hoped he would get the credit he deserved for taking over his remedial classes. But Kurt's absence meant that Blaine was upset and once again Sebastian couldn't understand why it was that it hurt him so much to see Blaine so down.
"Why don't you ask Holly if Kurt's okay? I'm sure she must know something if she's subbing for him, right?"
Blaine continued doodling absently on the paper in front of him. Honestly, he hadn't thought much about that. He was sure Dalton wouldn't be obligated to tell her why she had to sub for Kurt but after remembering the night out at Club Q he knew they were friends so there was a possibility that she would know something about how he was doing. And any news about Kurt right now was better than not knowing anything.
"Did you want me to hang back with you after French to ask her?" Sebastian offered suppressing the urge to comfort Blaine and put his hand on his shoulder. He mentally cursed the invention of feelings it totally wasn't his thing and was fast making him weak.
But Blaine shook his head, "No. It's okay, I'll ask her myself. Thanks though. Are you coming to Warbler's practice today?"
Sebastian nodded, "Yeah."
"Cool, I'll see you then."
Sebastian didn't have another period with Blaine until French but Blaine was late to class so Sebastian didn't end up sitting next to him. And after class, he only had time to give Blaine one last look as he saw him stalling, preparing to stay back to talk to Holly.
No doubt, Holly was an incredible teacher. Her enthusiasm and passion for the class combined with her young age and the fact that she had a great voice herself made her one of Blaine's favorite teachers. But she wasn't Kurt. And right now, Blaine just wanted Kurt. He needed to know if Kurt was okay.
Miss Holliday was erasing her name from the board when she felt Blaine standing behind her. "What can I do for you, Blaine?"
He jumped, slightly startled, he had forgotten her uncanny ability to be more aware of student's motivations and actions then they suspected. It was why she was the teacher who noticed if there was something on her chair before she sat down, who glided with ease if the floors were waxed on purpose, who had excellent reflexes if objects were thrown her, and, in Blaine's case, knew when there was a student standing behind her to talk to her after class.
He smiled shortly, "I mean no disrespect to you, Mademoiselle, but I was just wondering if you knew when Monsieur Hummel would be returning to class."
Holly turned around giving him puppy eyes, "Blaine, you are ever the gentleman, aren't you? No disrespect taken my friend! But you know the school isn't required to tell me anything about Kurt, right? And that even if they did, all I'd be able to tell you was he was chucking sickies?"
Blaine looked downcast, "I guess. But I also know that you and he are friends so I… I was just wondering if you knew anything. I guess I'm just… worried about him."
Holly tilted her head as she looked at him, as if only just remembering something, "Wow, so that really was you at Club Q, eh? I thought that was just wishful hoping on my part for Kurt; see he was crushing on you with a capital M for Major but," She paused staring at Blaine, suddenly remembering where they were, "Oh shit! You didn't hear that from me, okay? So, well um yeah, still not meant to be telling you anything but… he's just dealing with some stuff. He'll be back when he's ready. He's a very strong young man so I don't think you have anything to worry about."
Blaine nodded, slinging his Prada satchel higher as he made to leave the room. He thanked Holly and could feel her eyes on him as he walked away.
"Blaine?" she said just as he made his way to the door. He turned around to acknowledge he had heard her.
"Kurt's staying at his friend Julie's place so if you wanted to see him, that would be a good place to start."
Blaine looked so downcast and defeated; Holly cursed the rule that forbade her from having physical contact with any of her students. She just wanted to hug him. "Is something wrong, Blaine?"
"Somehow… I don't think Kurt wants to see me right now."
Holly shook her head, "I don't think so. I know he's been avoiding his cell, but he tends to do that a lot anyway. I know he might not want company but I think he'd be really glad to see someone if it was you."
"Really, really," Holly repeated. "Now get out of here!" she joked.
Kurt and Julie were cuddled up on her couch, watching reruns of An American Horror Story under a rainbow blanket they were sharing. It was the same blanket that Julie had bought at a gay pride festival with Kurt. Presently they were munching on popcorn when Julie's eyes suddenly grew wide and she focused all her attention on her friend.
"Oh no…" Julie said, staring right at Kurt.
Kurt looked right back at her and felt his body immediately tense up, "What's wrong?"
She went right up to him and looked him square in the eye, "It looks like we're about to face the… face the return of Zombie Kurt! Grrrr! Aaargh!" She made weird hand gestures and screeches that would have looked great in a remake of Thriller.
Kurt put his hand to his chest, "Jesus Julie, I thought something was seriously wrong!"
"But don't you see that the return of Zombie Kurt is so very wrong!" She flung her hands to her hips, mocking annoyance. "I mean look at you. I can't remember the last time you went this long without moisturizing! Your skin is actually drying on me and you have dark circles under your eyes which prove you haven't been sleeping well and that makes no sense because you haven't got out of the house in a week! Holly Holliday, with all her crazy quirks, called up to talk to you. Even Brian is worried about you."
Kurt showed no emotion at the response so Julie pressed the point harder. "Brian, Kurt. The man has the emotional range of a teaspoon and he's worried about you."
"Why?" Kurt asked lazily, "Because he hasn't been able to come to your place in the week since I've been here? You know, I don't dictate who comes in and out of your place, Julie. He's still free to come over and see you if he wants. I don't mean to intrude."
"Oh please! We all know if he comes over we're going to have hot raging sex and unfortunately for you I can't keep my mouth shut."
"Well, that got your attention, didn't it? Coffee?"
"I would love some. And why couldn't you get my attention by offering me a cup of steaming hot goodness before boasting about your obviously raging sex life?"
She walked over to the coffee pot smiling, "Because nothing gets anyone attention better than when they hear the word sex."
Kurt rolled his eyes and watched Julie as she made the coffee. Her moves were so fluid, even when she was doing something so mundane. She caught him staring at her.
"Honey, if I didn't know any better, I'd swear you were just giving me flirty eyes."
Kurt winked, "Maybe I was. Sorry, I'm just trying to distract myself. I'm worried about my apartment."
Julie handed him his coffee, "Have you reported it to the cops? Do you know who did it?"
"N-no, I have no idea. And I'm sure the cops have better things to worry about then an unexplained messy room. But I'm not as much worried about that as I am worried about what the hell the new interior designer is doing to the place at the moment. You didn't have to pay for my apartment makeover, Julie."
"Yeah well I did, so shut up. You're one of my best friends, Kurt. Without you, I probably would have never landed this Broadway gig, or have this much money in the first place, so I owe you. Big time."
He put her arm around her and lay his head to rest on her shoulder. "Thanks Julie. You're one of my best friends too."
She laughed, "You're only saying that because you want me to marry Brian so you can tell everyone your best friend is Broadway star Julie Andrews."
"That and you make excellent coffee. Starbucks still hasn't found a worthy replacement."
She poked out her tongue at him. "Nice to know you're using me!" She huddled closer to him, "Soooo tell me. What's going on with that guy you met at that fancy dinner party I took you to?"
"Duh. The one you went home with!"
Oh. She meant Alex.
"One night stand. Nothing more."
Julie looked devastated. "Oh that's too bad. I really liked him. Especially after one of the guys working on the show told me that your guy was there undercover. As in your guy was a cop. Do I know how to pick them or what?"
She got up to take Kurt's already half empty coffee cup to refill it. "So you haven't been in contact with him at all since that night?"
"Well, yes actually," Kurt said truthfully, "But it's complicated."
Unfortunately for Kurt, Julie had that look on her face that told Kurt he was nowhere near mentally prepared for what she was about to say next.
"Well?" Kurt asked, in anticipation. "What is it?"
Julie handed him his refilled coffee turning to distract herself with the kitchen. "I may have possibly gone through your cell to stalk out his number and invite him over…?"
"You what? Why would you do that?"
Feeling a little foolish, she still couldn't quite bring herself to look at him. "I mentioned that Heedless Holly rang up to find out about you, yes? Well, we got talking, as we girls do because we love to complicate ourselves in your lack of love life and she mentioned that you were really into someone you had just met and I jumped to the conclusion that it was Mr. Hot Stuff from our night because it had only been less than two weeks since you hooked up and it if it wasn't him, how the hell do you travel so fast from one man to another, you shark you?"
She said this all really fast as her face twisted into a sympathetic look begging for an apology.
"Remember when I said it was complicated?" Kurt asked to which Julie quickly nodded.
"It's complicated because I hooked up with his eighteen year old step-son, Blaine. Who also happens to be a student in my French class."
Julie's shoulders fell. "Oh. Oh! Oh Kurt—how could you let things get so complicated? I know he's legal but you could still lose your job over this. And if something like that gets on your record, you will probably never be able to teach again."
Kurt stared down at his coffee, "I know. Trust me, I know. And I also know I have a huge crush on Blaine and he's been through so much, you should see his student file Jules, but you know me, I'd never act on an impulse I had over a student. I just… I have to... I have to be with him. I'm—"
"If you tell me you're in love Kurt, I swear to God…"
A knock interrupted their conversation. Julie looked at the door but made no attempt to get it. "You may as well answer that. It's probably Alex. And you're right, this is complicated. But at least he's a cop. Maybe he'll be able to take on your case. If you're not sleeping with him anymore, there shouldn't be a problem…"
She was still busying herself in the kitchen as Kurt got up to answer the door, rolling his eyes, because he swear he just saw his best friend down a shot of vodka and he was hurriedly thinking of the best excuse he could come up with to have Alex out of his way as soon as possible. There was no way in hell that he was going to report what had happened because if he did, then Karofsky would find out and Kurt wasn't willing to risk that but… when he opened the door to greet him, his mouth fell open. Because it wasn't Alex who had come to see him.