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It's general practice for them to leave their phones on the piano now. After one too many missed calls thanks to rifling through bags or just not hearing the ringing, they lay them out and just answer if needed. Quinn has answered Rachel's phone twice, Finn answered Puck's once to hear a massive tirade from Puck's mother which Puck didn't miss because his ma was that loud, Tina blushed her way through a phone call on Santana's phone once and Artie had twenty minutes talking Mike's mother through a computer problem once.
It was just easy in the overall sort of way.
They have Sectionals in few weeks, so they were getting pretty heavy into the dance routine, focusing on everything being perfect. For the most part, it meant they all turned their phones to silent during glee, but they just forgot sometimes. Like that day; when they were meant to be knee deep in choreography and someone's phone started ringing.
The chance that it could be a parent, a family emergency, a message that needed passing on, that was what made them still answer the phones. Puck just happened to be the closest that time.
"'lo." He at least knew it wasn't his own phone.
"Faggot." That, right there, was unexpected. Not just the word but the tone and the pure venom behind it.
"Little fuckin' fairy, you're gonna rot in hell."
"And you better pray that I don't find out who the fuck you are or you'll be swallowing your own balls when I shove 'em down your throat." He disconnects before there's a reply and stares at the phone in his hand. It doesn't take a genius to figure out that it's Kurt's phone and it's a call that was meant for Kurt.
No one is dancing, no one is even pretending to be rehearsing, they're all just staring at Puck, except from Kurt, who has suddenly found the floor to be intensely interesting.
"Dude?" Finn just looks at him, hands out as if to ask a question and Puck just shakes his head.
"How often does this happen?" The question is for Kurt, the whole of the club falling silent to watch Puck and Kurt. Usually never without words, Kurt just shrugs.
"A few times a month, maybe twice a week." It's abnormal, hearing Kurt like that; scared, embarrassed, maybe a little bit ashamed? Puck's not used to it, because even when he was getting tossed in dumpsters, Kurt maintained that 'better than you' air, which just made him seem like an ice queen.
"And you failed to mention this, because?" This just felt different, felt like more because the piece of shit was calling Kurt's phone to spit abuse at him. Puck had taken a fair share of verbal abuse, it sucked. Sometimes it was worse than a slap. And it's gotta be a head trip, cause this isn't just a case of someone looking up a directory and getting the Hummel's home number. It's Kurt's fucking phone.
"Yeah, Ladyface," Santana's getting into things, arms crossed over her chest, "this is the kind of thing you mention to friends. Especially friends that will fuck their shit up." Puck might not be like, close or whatever, with Kurt, he doesn't even really know him all that well beyond the obvious stuff; gay, likes to sing, dresses weird but has names for his shit, obsessive about his skin, bit of a bitch, kinda hot, the usual. But San he does know, and abusive and homophobic calls are likely to rub her in all the wrong ways, because Santana is a lady-lover in denial and that's all good for her.
Seriously, he knows things about her and Britt.
"What is there to say? Some anonymous person feels the need to call me and hurl slurs at me from time to time. It's not like there's anything that can be done." Santana has this smirk on her face, one that Puck is very familiar with, even as he glances to her and she grins at him in return.
"Oh, how wrong you are, Miss Fabulicious. Just wait and see what we do."
So it starts that no one in glee answers a ringing phone except Puck or Santana. Sometimes it's nothing special, one time Santana had to explain to Burt why she was answering Kurt's phone and then Kurt had to explain it too. Another time Puck wondered just who the hell Brittany was talking to these days.
On the days where the caller phones, Puck and Santana don't exactly give him much time to get out his little abusive lines. If it's Santana that answers, her remarks are rather cutting by themselves while they both try to figure out just who the fuck is calling.
The more than Santana lays into him, the more he loses his shit and starts getting worked up.
"I don't get the point in this." Kurt just sits on one of the seats, arms folded, legs crossed, staring at Puck and Santana. They'd managed to get Kurt into the choir room, just them, for a minute to talk. Puck's sitting on the piano, Santana standing in the middle of the room, holding court.
"It's simple, we know who it is, we're going to deal with it. But we need you to not get your panties in a wad when we bust out the moves." She's not exactly treating it like a delicate matter, but that's not really San's style anyway.
"What she's trying to say is, if we get caught, which is likely when my fist breaks his face, would you be willing to back us up?" And it's not just about Hummel, or what's being said. Neither San or Puck have really been all that kind to the little diva over the last year or whatever, but now that they're all in glee, it's like there's a bond or whatever. They're all the lower of the food chain, even being jocks and Cheerio's they haven't got the same status.
But Santana's all about the underdog (sometimes, when it suits her) and Puck just hates the cowardice behind the calls. If Britt got one of those, he'd break so much shit it'd be unreal. And Kurt kinda falls into the same category as Britt; he's cute, kinda adorable in that really annoying haughty sort of way and totally hilarious like San when he breaks out the bitch card.
Besides; Kurt was on the football team. That means Puck has his back. Especially when it's stupid, knuckle head hockey players that are stirring the shit.
San's already ordered most of the Cheerio's around, Puck rounded up a few of the jocks who really hated the hockey players, didn't tell them what for, and they worked from there. They important thing is having a crowded corridor. They end up doing it directly across from Kurt's locker. Not planned, but how it came about. Kurt's at his locker with Mercedes and Tina, Rachel and Finn are in the all too, while Santana and Puck are leaning against the lockers opposite Derek Miller's in between classes.
"So, Puck, you ever thought about taking it up the ass?" They're doing this mostly to be sure, but Puck's already sure. It doesn't take much to rile Miller, and Puck's heard San rile him enough and remembered the sound of Miller's stupid little whistle because his front teeth are a little mashed from hockey. It's the sort of thing you recognise, even down the phone.
"I dunno, depends on the cock." The hall is crowded, and Santana smirks as she notices most of the attention is on them. It's important, she said, having most of the squad around and a bunch of the jocks. It's important, because Puck's about to start and all out brawl in the middle of the halls.
"Fucking faggot," it's that right there that makes San nod and turn away while Puck's backpack is pushed against the floor to sit and wait while he moves to cross the space between the gap.
"Figured that's what you'd say." Miller gets to turn around at least, because Puck's not the sort to go for the sucker punch. His first punch lands on Miller's nose, probably breaking it, while the second one goes for his sternum. It takes those two punches to get the hockey players around Miller's locker to jump him. He figures he takes a crack to the cheek and one to the ribcage before it turns into a full out brawl with half the football team and what there is of the hockey team.
It gets out of hand pretty quick, including Puck's skull colliding with the lockers and someone's elbow smacking him in the eye. He's got blood in his mouth and on his fist when Schue, Sylvester, Tanaka and Johnston from the chemistry department break up the fight and even then, everyone disperses to avoid detention or suspension.
His alibi might be totally fucked, but no one can prove that Santana, Kurt, Britt and Mercedes (who just agreed with anything Kurt said) were lying, and they couldn't prove that he wasn't just standing there shooting the breeze with San at her locker when Miller started a fight and no one had a clear story, so no one can do anything. He actually got off lighter than he thought he would.
Glee that day is hell though. He's already spent twenty minutes puking, which means the concussion is a definite, and the headache is already flaring up so he's not sure if he can deal with Rachel right then. San skips her last class with him to sit in the choir room, his head on her lap while she strokes his mohawk and he tries to stop the room from spinning. When the rest of the club walk in, Santana just glares when they make too much noise and he winces.
"Dude," Finn's voice is almost too loud, even when he's trying to be quiet, "what was that even about?"
"It was about Kurt," Santana answers for him, because it was as much her fight as it was his, "and the phone calls, and glee supposedly supporting each other."
"Here, Noah," Rachel sort of kneels into his line of vision (which is everyone's knees right then), producing this tube of cream. "This will stop the swelling getting too bad." She's really careful about spreading something around his eye, and if he wasn't so tired and sore he'd try to find out what it was. But ever since they dated the other week there, she's been like super nice to him and stuff. Like she's trying to show him they could be friends or whatever. He hasn't had the urge to stab himself or light himself on fire around her for a while, so maybe she's not completely wrong.
"Here," once Rachel moves, there's a bag thrust towards him, "take it." It's waved a little and Puck raises a hand to do the taking but misses it twice thanks to his really shit vision and perception right then. "Oh, sweet Dolce." It's Kurt then, waving what has to be a bag of ice or cool gel or something, in Puck's face. His wrist is grabbed and stilled and Kurt pushes the bag into Puck's hand and then shifts it to press against the side of his face. "Thank you."
Puck manages a small smile and nod, "We accept all major credit cards." Santana doesn't stop stroking his head though.
He's pretty sure he falls asleep during glee, maybe more than once. Schue doesn't comment on him sitting out, or Santana staying with him for most of it. She wakes him up once, to grumbling on his part but understanding on hers and he's starting to wonder how hard he hit his fucking head. The next time it's Rachel, poking his nose and smiling right in front of him and he realises that they've propped his legs up on another seat and his head is pillowed on Santana and Brittany's Cheerio's jackets.
The next time it's Kurt. Shaking his shoulder to a slight hiss at the pull of his ribs and then Kurt's a little more careful. "Sorry," Puck can't actually work up the energy to verbally reply, so he just hums a response, blinking his eyes open and wondering where the others had gone. "They're in the auditorium, making sure they fit on the stage." They've got a smaller space to work on with Sectionals, so they need to make sure the wheelchair's fit for Proud Mary.
It's possible he should pull himself up, get something to eat and try to function again. But it's a lot of effort, and he's been concussed before, he's better to limit himself and let San deal with him, because she's usually the best to leave it to.
"Why did- I mean, why did it matter so much?" Kurt is hunched down; much like Rachel had been, biting his lip.
"'Cause, no one should be scared t' answer their phone."
"But being tossed in a dumpster isn't the same?" Yeah, it's not like Puck can say he's never bullied anyone, but pushing kids around and verbally harassing them on their private phones is completely different in his books.
"'s not like you were ever scared of us, y'know y' weren't." He can't really help the slurring, he's beyond caring right then. "Y'r always so calm and all put t'gether. 's cute seein' you ruffled sometimes, but not scared." Kurt just shakes his head, but he has a small smile on his face, even as he reaches out and copies Santana's hair petting.
"You are such an oaf." It's not the usual condescending tone that Kurt usually has; it's more like the affectionate one he has with Mercedes and her brightly coloured jackets. "How can I possibly like you?"
"'s part of my charm." He doesn't ask about the 'like you' bit there, doesn't shift from the soft petting, he just lets it soothe away some of the hurt and some of the stress and a little of the tiredness.
"It must be." Kurt looks thoughtful for a moment, just watching Puck and Puck could feel his eyelids getting heavier with each passing second. "If you don't forget this, please don't hit me."
Kurt leans it to place a soft, chaste, simple kiss against Puck's lips. It's weird, because his brain just stops working for a few seconds (and really that means his head stops hurting for a minute) just to process the thought, Kurt was kissing him. Kurt was kissing him and Puck wasn't pulling away. Puck wasn't doing much of anything but letting it happen, until Kurt started to pull away and Puck realised that he didn't actually want the kiss to end.
"You have really soft lips. Almost like girls' lips, only not. It's kinda nice." He realises that his mouth is just literally running away with itself, but thankfully Santana and the others come back before he can say anything too stupid.
"C'mon Puckerman, I'm taking you home." He mostly leans against Santana on the way out, mumbling random things at her and sort of looking forward to staying at her place (Santana has the best bed in the world and she totally just lets him curl into it whenever) and hopefully sleep off the concussion.
He's out like a light from seven through until ten the next day. He shows up for fourth with a rather impressive bruise on his chin, a split lip and his whole left eye just a purple bruise. His ma would freak when she saw him. He's got more important things right then though.
"So, I was thinking," most of his thinking happened in Santana's shower that morning while he was trying to wash the dead dog taste out of his mouth and not hurt his face more than it already hurt. And he knows there's a comment on Kurt's tongue by the expression on his face, so he just has to head that off before he starts, "If you're free this weekend, we should do something." He's not exactly good at that whole 'asking someone out' thing, mostly because he doesn't really need to do it.
"I'm sorry, you want me to, what, take you out to pay you for 'helping' me?" Kurt even does the air quotes.
"Um, no. Mostly I figure I should at least ask you out on a date before I go in for some making out." The surprise is pretty clear on Kurt's face, but Puck's had a few hours of coherency to think about things, and a few hours of incoherency to mull over that kiss and just how he didn't mind it at all. "Lemme know." He figures he can brush it off if Kurt says no, because he's not a pussy or anything, but Kurt kissing him wasn't exactly off putting, and Puck would be up for some more and he's fairly certain Santana told him she'd beat his box in if he didn't go for it.
"Um, I'm not doing anything," Kurt manages to get it out before Puck walks away, smiling just a little, "I mean; I don't have anything planned yet."
"Cool, um, dinner? Movie?" He figures it's standard first date territory, and he's pretty sure that the little Thai place near the movie hall would be right up Kurt's organic food loving alley. Kurt just nods, still smiling that almost shy smile, which makes Puck grin a little, even if his lip does hurt a touch from that. "I'll pick you up at six, Saturday."
"Don't be late, Puckerman." Kurt manages to pull out his diva for the firm tone and hard stare before he turns and walks away. Puck just laughs to himself. He figures Kurt might be worth sitting through a chick flick or whatever.