In The Dark
Hello fellow readers! I have now have two stories going at once so I apologize if updates are slow.
Summary: set after Never Been Kissed. Kurt is attacked and is now blind. He struggles with the adjustion but a certain curly haired Warbler is there to help.
Disclaimer: I don't own Glee.
Chapter 1: Lost
Burt Hummel watched his son run his hands over the white cotton sheets of the hospital bed. Kurt's face was twisted with confusion and sadness as his hands skimmed the sheets. Kurt winced as he heard Burt shift in his chair, clothes rustling. How had he never noticed how loud that was before? The monitors in the room kept up a steady pulse of beeps as they monitored Kurt's heart rate – which was, thankfully, normal.
Burt's eyes trailed over his son. Kurt was lying in the standard hospital bed, propped up against a mountain of pillows. Bruises stained his arms and ran along his jaw line. Burt couldn't see much else; a large white bandage was wrapped around Kurt head, covering his forehead and his eyes.
Burt's hands clenched into a tight fist. He knew people were cruel and he'd been exposed to the cruelty in people that lurked below the surface enough times in the bullying that Kurt had suffered before but this. This was beyond cruel. Due the actions of those animals, his son was now blind.
"You're grunting," Kurt said softly, head cocked to one side.
"Sorry," Burt replied, clearing his throat and sitting up straighter.
"It's OK," Kurt told him, dropping his head. "It's just loud."
Kurt flinched again and Burt turned to see a nurse walking in. She smiled at Burt, who nodded in response. "How are you feeling Kurt?" the nurse asked softly. Everyone had been instructed to keep their voices low as Kurt's hearing adjusted. In losing one sense, your others became heightened and Kurt would need time to get used to it.
"OK," Kurt murmured, refusing to lift his head. Of course, he wasn't OK. How could he be? He was blind. There was no sugar-coating it or hiding from it. The horrible reality hit him over and over again. He would never see his friends again. He'd never see his father again. How could he live like this?
The nurse flitted around, checking Kurt's monitors and making notes on his charts. "Can I get you some water Kurt?" She asked.
"No, thank you," Kurt replied, trying to be polite, but it sounded horribly forced to his over-enhanced ears.
"Alright. If you need anything, don't hesitate to ask," the nurse smiled kindly at him, though of course, Kurt wouldn't know this. "Also, there are some people downstairs wondering if they can come and see Kurt."
"No," Burt answered firmly. "Nobody is to come in here."
"Of course," the nurse nodded, though she looked slightly startled. "I'll tell them that it's family only." The nurse left the room and Kurt slouched down further into the bed.
All of New Directions had tried to come in and talk to Kurt, but Burt was having none of it. Not even Carol or Finn could come in and see his son. Burt watched Kurt curl on to his side, face turned towards him. Kurt had been in hospital for three days already and was counting down the seconds until he could go home. He hated hospitals and wanted nothing more than to curl up in his bed and pray that this was all a bad dream.
"You should go to sleep," Burt said softly.
"I want to go home," Kurt whispered, voice barely creeping above a whisper. He sounded like a young child who was homesick and Burt didn't blame him. The four walls of the hospital room seemed to get smaller and smaller with each passing day.
"I know, buddy. I'll find out when you can come home as soon as I can, okay?" Burt promised and Kurt nodded.
Silence fell over the room and Burt found it hard to tell if Kurt was falling asleep or if his mind was wide awake, going over what had happened. Burt had turned off Kurt's phone; New Directions were constantly calling and messaging Kurt.
Burt wasn't happy with any of them. Kurt was constantly talking about glee, the drama they went through that seemed to happen on a daily basis and how they were meant to be a family. They were so caught up in themselves that they couldn't see that Kurt was in trouble. Not until it was too late.
It wasn't their fault – it was jackasses that blinded his kid's fault – but since Kurt didn't know who did it, Burt was directing his anger at the kids who could have done something, if they had paid closer attention.
"Dad?" Kurt said quietly and Burt jumped at the sudden noise. He shook his head to clear his thoughts and turned his attention back on his son.
"Could you – could you do me a favour?" Kurt asked in a small voice.
"Anything you need, Kurt," Burt promised.
"I was wondering if you could get a message to someone for me," Kurt said slowly.
"Who? Mercedes?" Burt asked, confused.
"No. I, um – I met a new friend a few weeks ago. He goes to Dalton Academy out in Westerville," Kurt explained. Burt wondered when the hell Kurt had been in Westerville but decided that the conversation could wait. "I was wondering if you could text him and ask if he could come visit me."
"What's his name?" Burt asked, curious.
"Blaine," Kurt whispered, cheeks flooding red.
There was a pause. "I don't know, Kurt," Burt said, slowly.
"Please," Kurt pleaded, "just one visitor. Just him."
"Why him?" Burt asked, curiosity getting the better of him. "Why not Mercedes?"
"Blaine, he – he's gay too, Dad," Kurt said softly and Burt was taken aback by his honesty. The two of them hadn't shared much, not since Elizabeth passed away. Burt was determined to rectify this, though deep down, he knew the damage was irrevocable. "He's the only one who understands."
"Is his number in your phone?" Burt asked.
"Yeah," Kurt nodded and Burt grunted in response. He got up and rummaged through Kurt's bag for his phone.
"How do I turn it on?" He asked, looking at the device as if it was an alien.
"There's a button at the top. Push it down," Kurt instructed and Burt obliged, smiling with pride when the phone seemed to respond. He waited for phone to wake up and it started buzzing in his hand. Messages flooded in and Burt sighed. He waited until it stopped alerting him of new texts and missed calls before looking at the phone through narrowed eyes. It was a foreign object to him; he wasn't nearly as tech savvy as Kurt would have liked him to be.
"Where are the buttons?" Burt grunted.
"It's a touch screen, Dad," Kurt said softly and Burt knew he would be rolling his eyes if he could. "Go to the button that looks like a phone book." Burt glanced at the phone and quickly spotted the icon. It opened and a list of names popped up. "Do you see Blaine's name?" Kurt asked.
"Yeah," Burt said.
"OK, touch it and then click, create text message," Kurt instructed and Burt did as he was told at an agonisingly slow pace. Burt slowly composed a message to Blaine, reciting it to Kurt as he typed.
Hello Blaine, this is Burt Hummel. I was wondering if you are able to come to the Lima Hospital. Kurt has been in an accident and would like you to visit. – Burt
"Done," Burt grinned proudly, looking at Kurt, who smiled softly in return.
"Thanks, Dad." The phone buzzed and Kurt perked up. "What does it say?"
Hello Mr. Hummel. Of course I can visit. Is Kurt OK? When can I come? – Blaine. "He can come tomorrow," Burt said, after he read it aloud to Kurt. He typed out a message that said as much and sent it with ease. He could totally get the hang of this thing.
"Thank you, Dad," Kurt smiled. Burt noticed that it was the first time he had smiled properly since the incident. Obviously this Blaine was important to him. He would be getting a very stern talking to when Burt met him, though.
Kurt's phone buzzed again and Burt looked at it, read it aloud to Kurt as he did so. I'll be there as soon as visiting hours open. I hope Kurt's OK – Blaine
The phone started ringing and Rachel's name flashed on the screen. Burt winced, letting it ring out before switching the phone off – as per Kurt's instructions – and put it back in Kurt's bag.
"Get some sleep, Kurt," Burt instructed firmly and Kurt nodded, settling against the pillows again.
Burt watched Kurt's breathing even out and he knew he was finally asleep. Burt had been given special permission to stay after visiting hours. They needed Kurt to remain calm and feel safe; his body had gone through a dramatic change and Burt would be there to help him.
His first night in hospital, Kurt had woken up – having passed out after the attack – in a panic, terrified and hyperventilating. It had taken them a while to calm him down, giving him oxygen to help. Burt hadn't left his side since and the staff had agreed, knowing it would keep Kurt calm.
Burt crossed his arms and continued to watch Kurt. He couldn't believe that he had missed that Kurt was miserable and in trouble. Kurt had lost weight, he was quieter, he stopped playing music and singing around the house. Burt had been distracted by his relationship with Carol, but it was no excuse. He should have seen it. He should have known that Kurt was being bullied at school – hadn't he seen his son come home in different clothes than he had left in enough times?
Burt felt horribly guilty. He had promised Elizabeth that he would take care of their son and he had failed. Well, next time, he wouldn't. He would do anything to protect Kurt.
Kurt hadn't spoken about what had happened. The police had come by and had questioned him – but they hadn't got much out of him. Kurt didn't know who had attacked him and even if he did, he wasn't saying anything.
Burt sighed quietly and rubbed his hands over his face. His eyes dropped closed and a wave of fatigue fell on him. He got himself comfortable and started to drift into unconsciousness, hoping that tomorrow would be better and that this was all a dream.
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