AN: YEA! Another update. I really hope you like this chapter. PLEASE let me know. Hopefully I will get some more writing done tomorrow, and the craziness has died down. Anyway I adore feedback and the more reviews I get the quicker I seem to write.
Kurt sat, his back against the tree, eyes gazing on the sleeping figure in front of him and thoughts racing. Since taking up the post of guard, Kurt couldn't get the thought of Blaine's fate out of his mind. One thought kept popping up mocking all others: 'I am royalty, surely Blaine's father would approve. Illyria is a well respected kingdom. Maybe Blaine can have a marriage based on love.' The more the thought repeated itself the more he resigned himself to the fact: he loved Blaine.
It was never something he thought about, not consciously, All the couples he knew were a man and a woman… but then his mind flew to the beautiful wanderers he met, Santana and Brittany. Their love was clear to him, their words, and actions announcing it proudly. If it was true for them, why couldn't it be true for him and Blaine?
His thoughts then turned onto himself. How many times had his gaze lingered on another man? Fleeting glances dancing over broad shoulders and muscled arms; gazes that just seemed to slip over their female counterparts. Surely if he discussed the matter with Finn, the opposite would be true for him. Yet, none of these reactions were anything compared to what he felt looking upon Blaine now.
The physical reaction he couldn't deny upon their first meeting paled next to what knowing the man had done. Blaine's words repeated themselves over in his mind made his heart beat for such magnitude it stole the very breath from his body. Another thought, Blaine could be both friend and lover. Kurt's mind filled with images of talking for hours while stealing kisses and his heart ached for it. This is what he had been looking for since he first understood the idea of marriage. Not just love, but a friend by your side forever.
But was there any way, Blaine could feel the same? The idea brought tears to Kurt's eyes. What were the odds Blaine felt the same pull Kurt did. Kurt couldn't help it doubt. Kurt's only hope was it true love could beat the odds.
Blaine was walking through a field of heather; he knew it well having played here many afternoons of his youth. He spun around spying a figure in the distance a smile illuminating his face. Kurt. Blaine ran towards him only to be met halfway and swept off his feet. Laughter filled the air for a moment before their lips met. Spinning around kissing, the two soon loss balance, and tumble to the ground. As Blaine propped himself up and look down on the handsome young man the words spilled from his lips, "I love you Kurt."
Blaine blinked awake reeling from the dream. He quickly glanced over to the tree Kurt settled against as they switched the watch; the space was empty. He sat up and surveyed their impromptu campsite. Orion and Marlin munched on grass in the dawns' light, only Kurt and Pavarotti seem to be missing.
Blaine sat there, thoughts of the dream collidomg with his still waking brain. Could he truly love Kurt? Answer came with a resounding yes with each beat of his heart. He knew that no other would ever fulfill him the way Kurt would. His heart faltered; but it could never be. While his brother could be afforded the luxury of marrying a commoner, Blaine would not be so lucky. No, the king was determined he would marry Princess Rachel and there was naught Blaine could do about it. Even if Kurt was a prince... Blaine stopped the thought before it could fully form. There was no use dreaming of things that could not be.
With a sad smile, Blaine began packing their things away. Soon after, Kurt emerged from the trees Pavarotti riding on his shoulder. "Good morning dear Prince" he beamed at Blaine, "Pavarotti and I have been hunting. When we stop tonight, we can roast the meat to provide for us while we are under the mountain."
Kurt's smile could not go unanswered even with the ache still present in Blaine's chest. "Well done sir. Perhaps we should pick more berries to sustain us as well."
Side-by-side two filled the satchels left from their dwindling resources. Opting to take the path of the stream, they traveled alongside each other when the woods would allowed. Quiet conversation filled the air, neither able to contain themselves for fear of safety. Pavarotti flew ahead in the open air; he would be able to alert them to any danger.
By midday, they approached a widening in the bank that stretched for a mile or more. Feeling more like young boys to men on a mission, Kurt smiled to Blaine "Race you to that large oak."
"You will never beat Orion" Blaine bragged just before Kurt called "go." Laughing the two urged their horses into a run. Their faces full of excitement, they raced towards the tree in the distance, cloaks flapping out behind them. At the tree drew near Kurt sang to his horse a melody and in a tongue Blaine didn't recognize. Merlin burst forward pulling far ahead and no matter the urging Blaine gave him Orion couldn't catch up. Reaching the tree, Kurt slowed Merlin down before swinging off the heaving horse's back, delight dancing across his beautiful face.
When Blaine met him, he joined him at the base of the tree. "How did you do that?" he asked his awe not masked on his face.
"My mother she taught me the song when I first learned to ride. The kingdom she was from lay near one of the Elvin kingdoms and they shared much knowledge with her people. That song was some of it, she tried to pass on to me as much as she could before she died." Kurt told him laughter still in his voice.
Blaine looked on him with disbelief, how could this man be real? A small smile played on his lips, while Kurt may never be his; he wanted to give something to him. "Well for that spectacular win, you deserve a prize my good sir."
He unclasped his own ornate cloak pin. Silver vines knotted their way around a large sapphire; it was a present from his father passed down for generations. It was given to him when he passed the trials each knight of the kingdom had to complete before serving the king. Blaine didn't explain this to Kurt but as soon as he saw Blaine reach for the pin he began to protest.
"Don't be ridiculous, I cannot accept such an extravagant gift. Besides, how would you keep your own cloak on?"
"I'll just take yours, silly. I insist," Blaine said with a smile, reaching towards Kurt own plain cloak pin.
Kurt's breath hitched as Blaine worked his fingers replacing the plain pin with his own ornately beautiful piece. Blaine's face was close to his as he worked. Kurt had to use all his will to fight the urge to swoop down and kiss him to relieve him of the agony of never knowing what he knew you would be perfection. Just when Kurt didn't think his will would hold out, Blaine was leaning back smiling at his work.
"Come on," Blaine broke the silence, "if we wish to make it to the base of the mountain by nightfall, we had better hurry."
As they rode the rest of the day, Kurt would covertly reach out to touch the pin and a small smile would play on his lips. Blaine did not fail to notice the gesture but wondered if it was due to himself or the precious jewel that rested there.
When the sun began to sink, they could see the mountain looming in the distance. Rather than rest for the night at its base, they made camp once more by the stream. Burying another fire, Kurt roasted the three rabbits Pavarotti had caught that morning while Blaine worked to consolidate their packs.
Without the horses, it was up to them to carry what they would need once they set out in the morning. They each selected two swords and several knives and left the rest of the weapons behind on the saddles. Knowing they would be taking turns keeping the watch at night, they only selected one bedroll and blanket. (Blaine's) That along with a bag for their food and the water bladders was more than enough for them to carry. That decided, they settled down for one last night under the stars until their duet became a trio.
Kurt stirred under the blanket has the sky began to lighten and the first thing he noticed was this smell of Blaine surrounding him. He sighed in contentment before remembering why it had taken him longer than expected for him to fall asleep last night with Blaine scent all around him. He willed himself to get up and end the silent torture.
Blaine was securing his saddle back on Orion along with all his things they wouldn't be taking with them. He was talking a low voice to the beast. Kurt busied himself doing the same. "Take care my friend, I hope to emerge soon. Listen for my call and with luck we will be heading home before you know it." The last strap tightened, Kurt whistled for Pavarotti, who swooped down onto his waiting arm.
"Now my friend we must part. Watch out for Merlin and Orion and listen for my call." Pavarotti snapped his beak at Kurt before taking off with a cry.
Kurt turned to his last companion to see Blaine was watching him. With no words just exchanged smiles, they set off once more towards the mountain. The sun was just fully making itself know when they reached the base.
"Sir Dalton said the entrance is just below the first outcropping of rock on this side," Blaine said as he studied the mountain.
"There," Kurt pointed to an area almost directly above them. The climb was difficult as no path led towards the area. Few spots were available to rest their weary limbs as they climbed ever higher. The sun was beating down by the time Kurt made it to the ledge just below their landmark. He leaned over the edge to offer his hand to Blaine below, who accepted it gladly. Once Kurt pulled Blaine up over the edge, they sat panting against the rock face trying to catch their breath. The wind whipped across the mountain and although the pair was sweaty, they had to bundle their cloaks around them to ward off the chill.
Once they were rested and a few drags from the water bottle later, the two begin inspecting the rock wall in front of them. Finally, behind a bolder they found at fissure in the rock just large enough for one man to squeeze through. Blaine insisted on going first and after silent argument Kurt reluctantly agreed.
Once inside, Blaine looked around waiting for his eyes to adjust. As his surroundings began to come into focus, he found himself in a small cave with the tunnel leading further into the mountain. He turned around and instructed Kurt to pass their things inside him. Soon Kurt was squeezing through the opening as well.
One nod towards Blaine, Kurt let him know they could continue. Blaine lead the way as the tunnel meandered its way ever higher into the mountain. It was eerily quiet, all sounds from the outside world extinguished. No light permeated the area. For what seemed like hours, they walked in the dark barely making out anything but what was right in front of them.
Suddenly a flash of light blinded them and they were set up on. A curtain was thrown back revealing a brightly lit room. The brightness after the inky blackness meant neither Kurt nor Blaine could see for the span of a minute. Blaine braced himself trying to use his hearing as he drew his sword, however, before he could block it, something collided hard with his chest sending him flying into the wall and he knew no more.
Kurt heard the sickening thud over the sound of running feet he swung his sword blocking two blows before his eyes adjusted to the brightness. Three men filled the tunnel two of which were advancing upon him. He saw the third standing over the prone figure of Blaine on the floor his sword raised, ready to strike a killing blow.
With only the thought of Blaine, Kurt set into action. In the blink of an eye, he grabbed dagger from his belt and threw it at the man intent on Blaine, striking him in the throat. Before the man's sword had even hit the ground, Kurt was running straight to the other attackers, mercilessly swinging his sword hitting one man in the shoulder and piercing the other in the gut.
"Have mercy, good prince" the blonde man cried, clutching his bleeding shoulder, his sword falling to the ground.
"Mercy?" Kurt asked seeing red. "You ambush me and my companion and yet you beg for mercy? Would you have shown him mercy?" Kurt pointed to Blaine's still form, his gut clenching at the puddle of blood beneath his head. Two other men lay dead on the floor by Kurt's own hand. "Go" he whispered not even looking at the man, "but if I see your face again, I may not be so merciful."
No sooner had the man's footsteps began to beat their staccato rhythm away, Kurt cloapsed by Blaine's side. "Blaine?" He almost whimpered. "Blaine, you have to wake up… please."
Blaine was so still Kurt began to panic; he could not lose him now, not before he could tell him how he felt. Even if Blaine didn't love him in return, even if they never could be… Kurt couldn't be the soul keeper of the knowledge of his feelings. Tears sprang to Kurt's eyes, but he did not notice as he pulled Blaine's head into his lap. "Blaine, you have to wake up for me. I have so much to tell you and I can't finish this adventure alone." Tears fell on Blaine's face, trailing paths over the olive skin.
Kurt's eyes were closed as he leaned over Blaine, so he did not notice the fluttering eyelids as he sobbed, "You can't die on me Blaine, I love you."
A warm calloused hand reached up and cupped the porcelain cheek that was, in fact, even softer than could be imagined. Blaine looked deeply into the startled blue eyes that sprang open at his touch. "And I love you," Blaine whispered before gently pulling Kurt down into a long awaited kiss.