This is some kid!Klaine for you. Because mandolinmonger on Tumblr asked me for a bit of a drabble for a fanart she drew, and after I did a bit of a dialogue for it and she posted it, I couldn't get it out of my head! So here I am, writing a full fic for it. Hope you enjoy!
Kurt walked away, leaving his mommy and daddy sitting on a bench talking to other moms and dads. He kicked the ground, looking over to the big play ground with all the other kids, yelling loudly and running around. He could recognize a few kids that went to his school for first grade. Most of them didn't like him.
Kurt decided he didn't really want to run around or even go on the swings anyway. It would mess up his clothes that his mommy had bought him, and he really liked the tie that looked like a bow (like the ones his mommy had on her dresser). He didn't want it to get ruined.
So instead Kurt walked further away, going towards all the trees just out of sight from the playground. It was shady over there and maybe Kurt could just sit at the base of the tree and sing. That would be so much more fun than getting sweaty and gross.
He finally reached a tall tree, with a bit of grass under it that didn't look too uncomfortable. Kurt was about to sit down when a voice from above him made him jump a foot in the air.
Kurt looked up, heart beating wildly. There was a boy above him, sitting in the tree! He was straddling one of the big branches, hands braced against the trunk.
Kurt squinted. He might have been Kurt's own age, with curly hair, darker than Kurt's, rolled up jeans and a red hoodie.
"What are you doing up there?" asked Kurt, once he had found his voice. Really, he'd never seen a kid his age so high up in a tree. Some kids at recess tried to, but no one was really able to.
"My big brother Cooper helped me up!" said the boy with a smile. He swung his legs in the air absently, looking down at Kurt. "But then he told me to wait here because he saw a girl across the park or something."
Kurt nodded a few times, looking up the tree. He was really high up - he must have a really big brother to have gotten him up there. Kurt didn't have a brother or sister, but he'd always sort of wanted a sister. They could play dress up. "How long has he been gone?" asked Kurt.
"Maybe like an hour," said the boy with a shrug. He continued to swing his legs.
"That's a long time..." said Kurt. Once he'd had to wait in the car for two hours to visit his grandparents and it was a really, really long time. Half of that stuck in a tree sounded worse, though.
"But it's fun!" said the boy brightly. "I'm tall up here!" He giggled and Kurt nodded. He sure was tall. "'xcept I'm gettin' kinda hungry," he said, frowning for the first time.
Kurt swayed from foot to foot nervously. "I can get my daddy to help you down, if you want?"
The boy's face broke out into a wide grin. "Okay!" Kurt was turning to walk away, back to where his parents were sitting, when the boy added, "Hey, my name's Blaine!"
Kurt turned, a bit surprised. He'd never been so friendly with another boy his age before. A lot of the girls in his class didn't mind playing with him at recess with their Barbie dolls, because Kurt didn't really like running around with the football like the boys. It was strange. New. But nice.
"...Kurt," he finally said, feeling his face heat up. "My name is Kurt."
"Hi, Kurt!" said the boy with a small wave. He swayed on the branch and for a moment Kurt was afraid he would fall, but instead he laughed and put his hand back on the trunk. "Oops!"
"I'll just - go get my daddy," said Kurt.
Kurt told his dad that a boy he'd met was stuck in the tree. He pointed toward it. His dad and mommy looked surprised and maybe a little amused. They both followed him, holding onto his mom's hand, trying to hurry them along. His mom got out of breath, though, because she'd been doing that a lot lately. Finally they got back to the tree and Blaine smiled.
"Hi, Kurt!" he said. "Hi Kurt's mom and dad."
His dad chuckled. "You can call us Mr. and Mrs. Hummel, kid. So, you stuck up there, huh?"
Blaine looked a little embarrassed. "Yes, sir. My brother helped me up and I didn't think it would be too hard to get down, but it's really high so I don't want to jump down."
"Your brother left you up there?" asked Kurt's mom.
"He saw a girl," said Blaine, wrinkling his nose.
Kurt's mom and dad laughed, looking at each other with understanding. "I guess your brother is older than you, huh?" asked his dad.
"He's 15," said Blaine. "I'm almost 7! He's always talking about girls." Blaine made a face. "Girls are gross." Kurt wanted to say he agreed, well, they weren't gross because Kurt did like to hang out with them, but he didn't understand how some guys kissed them.
Kurt's mom laughed and Blaine looked nervous. "Not girls like you, Mrs. Hummel! Mommies aren't gross at all."
"Well that's very nice of you, Blaine, was it?" He nodded. "Why don't we just get you out from that tree, huh?" Blaine nodded enthusiastically.
After a bit of effort, Kurt's dad was able to reach up and get a hold on Blaine's waist as he swung his other leg off the branch and slowly lowered himself down.
Once Kurt's dad had his waist, he lowered him all the way down to the ground with a grunt. Blaine swayed when his feet touched the ground, laughing. "My feet feel asleep!" he said.
Kurt smiled from where he was still standing next to his mommy, hand in hers. Blaine grinned at his dad, saying thank you. "No problem, kid," he said with a chuckle, reaching out to mess up Blaine's hair (like he did with Kurt sometimes).
"Hey Kurt! Now that I'm not in the tree anymore, do you want to play with me?" asked Blaine with excitement. Kurt blinked a few times at him, then took a shy step near his mother.
"I don't - I don't really like the play ground all that much," he said quietly.
"Me neither!" said Blaine with a laugh. "The kids are mean." He made a face.
"I'm shorter and I like the pink Power Ranger instead of the ones with boy colors, so I usually just go on the swings by myself or play with the pink Ranger in the sand!"
"I love the pink Power Ranger," said Kurt, in a slightly awed voice. The only other people he'd met that even slightly liked the pink Power Rangers were some of the girls he played with. He let them play with the pink Ranger and Kurt played with one of their Barbies during recess.
"Cool!" said Blaine, jumping up and down. "So, do you wanna go to the swings? No one is there now."
Kurt looked up at his mom and she nodded at him, a gentle smile on her face.
"Okay," said Kurt, turning back to Blaine. "I'd like that."
Kurt waved at his parents, walking over to the swings with Blaine. Blaine even pushed him a few times to get him higher on the swing, which Kurt never got help with from kids at school. Blaine was able to make himself go just as high even without someone pushing him. They laughed breathlessly as they swung back and forth. After a while, Kurt pushed his legs against the sand, slowing himself down. Blaine stopped too and started to twirl the swing around as they started to talk.
Blaine didn't go to his school. He went to the other elementary school in town, which made Kurt sad. He'd love to have a friend like Blaine at school with him. They were in the same grade, even though Kurt was already 7 and Blaine was still 6. They were just in the middle of talking about why the pink Power Ranger was the best when someone called Blaine's name.
"Oh, that's my brother!" said Blaine. He waved Cooper over.
Cooper was tall and looked like an adult, in Kurt's eyes. He had pretty hair, around the same shade as Kurt's, and clear blue eyes. Kurt blinked up at him as he approached the swings, smiling slowly. He kind of reminded him of a Disney prince, thought Kurt. Kurt had always secretly thought that the princes, like Eric, were prettier than the girls. Seeing Cooper made Kurt's insides fall, just like earlier when Blaine had told him to close his eyes as they were swinging.
"Found a friend, B?" asked Cooper, smiling at Kurt.
"This is Kurt! His daddy helped me out of the tree." Blaine pouted up at Cooper.
"You left me there, for like, an hour."
"Oh come on, it was like half an hour," said Cooper. "And this girl was here with her little sister and she was so cute, Blainers."
"Don't call me that!" huffed Blaine. "And girls are so not cute."
Cooper laughed and shook his head. "Well, I'm glad you got down. I'll make it up to you with ice cream on the way home?"
"You just don't want me to tell mom and dad."
"Exactly," said Cooper with a wink, reaching out to ruffle Blaine's hair like Kurt's dad had earlier. "But we should get going soon, okay, B?"
"Fine," said Blaine. He turned to Kurt with a smile. "It was a lot of fun hanging out with you! Maybe we can play some more later?"
Kurt's insides did the funny lurch again. He nodded. "My parents usually bring me here ever Saturday," said Kurt. He usually didn't like to go, but he did because his parents thought it would be good for him.
"I'll make sure Cooper brings me here, then! This was the first time we'd come," said Blaine with a smile. "Next time I'll bring all my Power Rangers and we can play!"
Kurt laughed and nodded. "Okay, that sounds fun."
Blaine grabbed onto Cooper's hand and said good-bye to Kurt. "Bye, Kurt!"
When Kurt went back to his mom and dad, they asked about Blaine.
"I think he's my best friend," he said with a wide smile. Because really, what else said friendship like a shared love of the pink Power Ranger?
Kurt and Blaine were able to play with each other almost every Saturday at the park for the rest of the school year. The summer they played even more, sometimes Blaine's mom would bring him to the park instead of Cooper, because he'd gotten a job at a ice cream store and couldn't take him all the time. Blaine's mom was nice and talked to Kurt's mom or dad when they were there.
As the summer continued, Kurt's mom wasn't able to take him to the park as often. She was really tired looking all the time. Kurt's dad sometimes took him, but he worked at the garage that he owned a lot. Kurt was sad that he couldn't see Blaine as much, but mostly, he was more concerned about his mommy. His dad had told him once that his mom was sick. Kurt had been sick before, and he'd gotten over it in a week or so, but as the weeks passed, Kurt realized that his dad had meant that his mommy was really, really sick.
He'd gone to the park a few more times at the end of the summer, but Blaine wasn't even there most of the time. Probably because Kurt had missed so many Saturdays before. Kurt wanted to miss Blaine, but his mommy was even sicker by then, and it made Kurt anxious. He'd started the second grade already, though, and everything was so much harder than the year before.
Kurt had mostly given up on the park. He missed Blaine, but then, he had a few really good friends at school, too. None of them were boys, of course. They were girls that really liked that he wore bows, too, even if they were around his neck.
Then his daddy told him that his mommy had died and suddenly, Kurt didn't miss Blaine at all. He missed his mom.
Kurt had known that fish and pets could die, but not mommies. That seemed weird and horrible for Kurt.
He wore a too big suit to his mommy's funeral, where they would put her in the
ground. He held on to his dad's hand and tried not to cry.
In all honesty, Kurt had barely thought about his childhood friend from the park. It was so long ago that, like most childhood memories, it faded from his mind. It had faded into vague memories about a boy in a tree who he had some, dim memories playing with at the park. It was like a fuzzy, old film to him now. All the details lost. Since it was so close to his mother's death, as well, it was a time
Kurt didn't remember much about, perhaps purposefully.
So when Kurt met Blaine Anderson early in his junior year, all he saw was a cute boy who turned out to be gay and quickly became his best friend. Kurt had never sparked a friendship so quickly with (what he'd thought at the time) a completely stranger. The name Blaine didn't bring any memories back, and even if they did, the curly haired boy just didn't match up with the shorter boy with gelled hair before him.
Even Burt did not recognize Blaine when Kurt began to bring him to the house. Why would he? They had changed so much since then. So many years had past by and Burt wouldn't remember one of Kurt's playmates.
It wasn't until Kurt met Cooper for the "first" time, over a year after meeting Blaine, that they put it together.
Blaine had mentioned his brother many times before. They were close, even though they were so many years apart in age and he lived in a different state. The name had tugged on a memory when he'd first heard it, but Kurt had stocked that up to the fact that his name was the opposite of Anderson Cooper.
Then late in February, Cooper was back home for an impromptu visit and Blaine brought him along to the Lima Bean one morning to introduce him to Kurt.
The moment Kurt saw Cooper, and locked onto his stunning blue eyes, his stomach fell like falling back, eyes closed on a swing set and memories flooded back instantly.
Cooper was certainly older, more mature looking, than the last time Kurt had seen him, but his eyes and general facial structure were similar. His eyes, in particular, did it for Kurt. Those he recalled most clearly. He was sure now that Cooper had been his first "real" crush (though at the time, he hadn't realized it) and it was the strong memory of a first crush that brought it all back for Kurt.
And if Cooper was the same boy he remembered at the park, taking his younger
brother Blaine there to play with Kurt...
Kurt turned to Blaine slowly. He had realized he'd just been staring at Cooper with a shocked expression for a few long moments now and Blaine was looking at him strangely. Kurt, though, looked closely at Blaine's face (though he'd see it so often, from so many angles and with so many expressions, Kurt was surprised he had missed it). If he looked at Blaine's face objectively, he did resemble the small boy Kurt had met as a child. The memories were still dull, though, but it had to be him.
"Kurt, are you alright?" asked Blaine, setting his hand on his forearm, a look of concern on his face.
"Yes," said Kurt, voice breathless. Kurt looked from Cooper to Blaine, then laughed. "I just - I remember." Kurt laughed again. Blaine still looked confused.
Kurt, though, he couldn't stop smiling.
"What do you remember?" asked Blaine warily. He had just introduced his brother to Kurt and Kurt had gotten this far away look in his eyes.
"I remember Cooper," said Kurt looking over to Cooper once again. "I remember him, from when I was seven years old."
"What?" asked Blaine, still confused.
Kurt reached forward and grabbed Blaine's hand. They were in the Lima Bean, after all, and they felt comfortable with some touching within the coffee shop's walls. Cooper and Blaine had sat down when they arrived, without coffee still.
"Do you remember," said Kurt in a rush. "When you were six, almost seven, and you got stuck in a tree at the park? Your brother helped you up but he was so girl crazy that he left you there for almost an hour. Then a little boy...me...I came up and you saw me and I got my dad to get you down."
Blaine's facial expression moved from confused, to almost blank. Then his mouth slowly fell open as he recalled the memory that went along with Kurt's words. He was putting the pieces together - Burt's somewhat familiar air to him when they had first met, for instance - and it all made sense.
"And then we realized that we shared a love for the pink Power Ranger and we played together almost every Saturday, and a lot of the summer, before we suddenly stopped," said Kurt, his voice low. "And I just - I never even thought about you after that, because my family..." Kurt's voice wavered.
"It doesn't matter," said Blaine, voice awed. "I - are you seriously - are you really him?" asked Blaine. Then he laughed, loudly. "Oh of course it would be you - that kid, he was better dressed than more adults and I remember...you wore a bowtie. I always wanted one," said Blaine, voice reminiscent. Blaine laughed, now. When he'd grown older, he'd been drawn to bowties around the beginning of high school. And now - well, they were one of his favorite things to wear.
"Woah - you're that little pipsqueak that Blaine pouted over not being at the park for at least a month over?"
They remembered then that they were not alone at the table, and that Cooper was staring at them intently. He had a wide smile on his face and his tone was teasing. "Oh wow - that's - woah." He barked out a laugh again. "And you're dating now. Woah."
"Yeah," said Blaine, tightening his hold on Kurt's hand. "Cooper, I mean, I guess
you've met - but this is Kurt, my boyfriend." Blaine smiled over at Kurt. "My best friend."
Kurt leaned over, feeling bold, and kissed his lips. It was a light peck, nothing huge, but it was everything. Blaine had been his friend when no one else his aged, save for a few girls, liked him. Knowing that they had been friends back then, and instantly dropped themselves back into that friendship when they had met at Dalton 9 years later - it made Kurt dizzy.
"I love you," said Kurt in a low tone.
"I love you, too," said Blaine, and Kurt knew that they would be talking about all of this more. They would talk about how Blaine had actually gotten his wish, and he had met the late Mrs. Hummel, something that was a point of conversation at some point for them. They would also talk about all the moments they had
missed, growing up, and catch up on the ones they had spent together. Kurt also thought about how he'd never even seen a photo of a younger Blaine. How strange was that, and if the Anderson had kept one or two up in their house, maybe they would have realized all this sooner. Then again, all of Kurt's old photos were also hidden away, save for a photo of his mother that was hung in their living room.
"Okay then," said Cooper, looking gleeful. "I want to know everything about you, since you've been seven, Kurt. And if you have any dirt on Blaine that has happened in the last year - because blackmail never expires."
Kurt laughed, leaning his head against Blaine, suddenly wanting to be closer to him. Cooper reminded him so much more of that time in his life, the first time he'd met Blaine and become his friend. It was like a photo, slowly developing, and making everything clearer.