Title: For You, Part 4 of 4 (aka the End)

Rating: PG-13

Pairings: Kurt/Blaine

Characters: One character who has yet to appear in the series (PoV of the narration), Blaine, Kurt, the Hudson-Hummel family.

Spoilers: Up until 3x14 + Character spoiler for 3x15.

Warnings: Nothing you wouldn't see in the actual series.

Word Count: 36 000+ on the whole, 11 000 for this part (last part is long).

Disclaimer: I don't own Glee. Glad other people invented it so I could play with it though.

Summary: He'd always been quietly terrified of the day Blaine would fall in love.

A/N: I'm actually nervous about posting this. I hope it turned out well and doesn't feel rushed...

Also, thanks to anyone who read that story to its end (in spite of the controversial issues it raised) and most of all to anyone who left a comment – it was reassuring to see you understood what I was trying to do. So here is the last part (but it's long, so it's okay?) I hope you enjoy it.

(Someone asked: why did I make Cooper say he was of Polish descent? Well, I needed a possible descent so that the (crappy, I'll admit) joke could work and I arbitrarly decided Polish was the one that corresponded best to Matt Bomer's physique. I'm perpetuating stereotypes, I know :/)

For You

Part 4

Kurt Hummel left for New York City in early August, 2012.

He stepped foot back in the city he'd fallen in love with a little more than a year prior - and like he'd promised his boyfriend was right there at his side.

Even if he wasn't meant to stay.

Cooper joined them when they arrived, a noisy, disorganized group of seven people crammed in one car and a rented moving truck. He hugged Blaine, greeted Kurt and Finn and Burt, offered his help for the move and then was forcefully introduced to a small perky girl named Rachel Berry, Kurt's roommate, and her two fathers who were greatly interested to hear that Cooper was a lawyer and had specialized in family law and social changes during his studies.

Unloading the truck took a while, especially since the apartment wasn't furnished apart from the kitchen and bathroom, so that both families had had to gather furnitures they'd kept at the back of their garage or up in the attic in anticipation of such an occasion. Burt, who had operated the truck during the most tricky sections of the drive, was ordered to rest while the others worked and ended up supervising the whole thing from an old armchair they nearly forgot to carry upstairs at the end of the day.

The two following weeks were great - Cooper showed Blaine every little corner of the city he'd discovered on his endless, solitary walks and left it to Kurt to take him to see the most symbolic, impersonal places while he worked. In the evening Blaine would be so tired from walking all day long he'd crash at the kitchen table, unable to do anything more than vaguely encourage Cooper as he cooked. Then they'd eat, do the dishes, watch a little bit of TV and go to bed - Cooper in his room and Blaine in the other bedroom that was only waiting for him to graduate to become his entirely. For two weeks, it felt like it already was.

Except it wasn't.

"One year," Cooper whispered in Blaine's ear as he hugged him goodbye at the airport. "Only one year and then you never have to go back there again."

He felt Blaine nod against his shoulder and held him tighter before he let go, stepping back to allow his brother to turn towards his boyfriend. They fell into each other's arms and Cooper had to look away from Blaine's face over Kurt's shoulders, eyes squeezed tightly shut, from his hands clutching at Kurt's back because he couldn't bear to see him hurting that way. He didn't know what Kurt told him before he let go, only caught the small, painful laugh Blaine gave in answer as they parted.

Kurt, Cooper thought, could've afforded to look a little bit more heartbroken. His hands lingered on Blaine's shoulders and his eyes were bright but his lips had apparently no problem curving into a reassuring smile and his voice was only slightly strained when he said:

"It's going to be alright. It's only one year - less than that. It'll be over before we know it. We'll make it."

Blaine held his gaze and nodded and took a fortifying breath and still didn't say a thing because he knew his voice would break on the first word and he'd follow right after.

Cooper wanted to grab him and say, To hell with Ohio, I'm keeping you, I'm not letting you go back there alone.

But he bit his tongue, and didn't move when Blaine lifted his carry-on and turned away, didn't move when he stepped through the gates and turned back one last time to wave, forcing an uncertain smile on his lips. Cooper only glanced at Kurt to see him still smiling encouragingly and waving. He felt a spark of irritation at how easy it looked for him, like it wasn't a big deal while Blaine seemed ready to fall apart at the seams.

He turned his eyes back towards Blaine and watched him as he walked away - and then he was gone.

A second floated past, a second during which nothing felt quite real, like it hadn't really happened - until it all shattered when Cooper heard a sob ring out right beside him.

He turned to Kurt right in time to see him bring a hand to his mouth as his carefully constructed facade crumbled - and the snide remarks he'd been preparing died in his throat as the boy curled in on himself, one shaking hand slapped to his lips, trying to hold it all in, and his other arm braced across his chest and stomach like it physically hurt, like something had just been ripped out of him.

And in a way, it had been.

"Ah, hey," Cooper said, automatically reaching out his hands but not knowing what to do - he'd never even touched Kurt before, always carefully kept his distance towards him. He settled on awkwardly patting him on the back as the boy began to shake and bawl helplessly. "It's okay, it's-"

Kurt was in such a state he didn't even try to bat Cooper's hand away as the young lawyer steered him towards the nearest seats, making him sit down before he collapsed to the ground all on his own.

"It's okay," he repeated uselessly, even though the sobs wrenching out of the boy betrayed quite clearly that it was not okay. "Just- Stay here, okay? I'll-"

He darted away to the nearest coffee vending machine, trying to ignore the stares the whole scene was garnering, snatching the beverage almost before it'd finished being poured into the small plastic cup. He hurried back towards Kurt and handed him the drink along with a tissue.

"Here," he said, feeling quite stupid - because he didn't know how to deal with people breaking down that way in front of him, people who weren't Blaine and whom he couldn't really curl up against him and crush into a hug that would hold them together until the worst was past.

"Oh, look at that," Kurt snarled between his chokes, cheeks stained with tears under his glare. "You're actually a decent person underneath it all."

He took the cup and the tissue though, and didn't protest when Cooper sat down beside him with a sigh.

He almost felt bad himself for not being more shaken, more emotional because of Blaine's departure. Not that it didn't hurt - it always did. But that was exactly it: it wasn't the first time he'd experienced it, it wouldn't be the last. He'd grown used to that wound tearing itself open and settling into a diffuse throb after a while, and then into a dull, continuous ache he could almost ignore some days but which never quite went away.

Seeing Kurt now, he remembered how it'd felt like the very first time, when he'd left for college and his parents had had to literally hold Blaine back to prevent him from rushing through the gates. He remembered how heavy his feet had felt back then, lead weights stuck to the ground and preventing him from turning away - until a boarding attendant had urged him forward and he'd numbly obeyed.

He could still hear Blaine's wails sometimes, calling him, an echo resonating behind him when he walked.

"That's not coffee," Kurt mumbled then, bringing him out of his thoughts. Cooper had no idea how much time had passed but the boy was calmer now, breath irregular and interspersed with sniffles and small sobs while he dabbed at his cheeks and eyes with the soaked-through tissue.

Cooper handed him another one. "I figured you'd need something a little bit more comforting."

"Industrial hot chocolate is foul and depressing," Kurt retorted, but there was no real fire behind it and he kept sipping at the drink anyway.

Cooper didn't give an answer, only watched the people milling around, going on with their lives. There was a strange atmosphere in airports, that feeling of suspended time and expectation, of things on the brink of beginning or ending - but it seemed like there were more endings than beginnings here and Cooper was starting to hate that too.

"It's just - it sucks," Kurt spoke again beside him, the word bursting out of him and making Cooper raise his eyebrows because he hadn't pegged Kurt for someone who'd use such words, instead favoring far more refined ways of expressing his discontent.

He probably was. But the situation called for it.

"I wanted to leave Ohio for so long," Kurt went on, tearing up again and looking frustrated at himself for it. "But damn it why couldn't he come with me?"

Cooper watched him wipe at his eyes furiously as if it'd stop the tears from coming, then he sighed again, looking down at his feet crossed at the ankles in front of him.

"You know," he said quietly, wearily. "That's a question I've been asking myself for years."

He needed a distraction.

He needed a distraction because work wasn't enough anymore apparently, and if he kept thinking about Blaine being alone in Ohio, not only separated from his brother but also from a boyfriend he'd apparently been stuck at the hip with, he'd go crazy with worry and with what might happen, what Blaine might do, what-

(No, stop it, stop thinking that right now. Blaine's stronger than that, he has other friends in McKinley, he isn't alone - he won't ever do that to you and Kurt, he'll call for help if he feels he can't deal with it all, if he feels that things are spiraling out of his control, he will.

He isn't like you.)

He needed a distraction so he did some research, asked around and finally settled for entering a small theater group that gathered twice a week to perform single scenes and excerpts from various plays.

"Really?" Blaine asked, voice stretched by the smile Cooper could envision on his face. It was disturbing how excited he sounded about that - definitely more than Cooper himself was. "That's great."

"I told them about you already," he replied, and laughed when Blaine spluttered. "What?" he went on amusedly. "I'm just working on you being famous even before you set foot in the city. I have it all planned out. In small steps."

Blaine snorted, apparently not convinced.

"We had to mention something about us," Cooper explained more quietly after a couple of silent seconds. "You're the first thing that came to mind."

It wasn't quite correct actually - when they'd done the personal introduction round the leader of the group had asked them to mention something that was important to them, something they thought defined them and hadn't anything to do with their work. Cooper had been surprised by how difficult it'd been for some people to find something to say. His own answer had been automatic, immediate, obvious, as instinctive and essential to him as breathing.

"My name's Cooper Anderson. I'm a lawyer - well, a brand new one. And I have a little brother, Blaine - he means the world to me."

Of course, the year it was absolutely certain Blaine would come to New York for Thanksgiving would be the year the prices would choose to go through the roof.

"Do you think you could ditch glee practice and take an earlier flight?" Cooper asked over the phone one Friday evening while scrolling through the various offers on his screen. They might as well try and make it worth it by lengthening Blaine's stay over the prolonged weekend as much as possible.

He frowned when what he got in answer was nothing but a distracted hum.

"Blaine," he said in an ominous voice. "You're not listening."

He felt Blaine freeze on the other end of the line and knew exactly what his repentant expression looked like when he admitted: "Not really, no."

"What is it?" Cooper asked softly, trying not to sound too worried too fast.

"It's-" Blaine began, then sighed. "Well, it's stupid. I'm worried."

Cooper felt his eyebrows raise. "About what?"

"It's just-" he stopped, then seemed to take a decision: "Cooper, could you... Could you go and check up on Kurt? Just drop in? I'm worried about him."

That wasn't what Cooper had been expecting.

"Why? Did something happen?"

To be honest, he'd been very happy pretending Kurt wasn't living in the same city as he in the past months and had been very careful not to mention him if Blaine didn't. Because he didn't want Blaine to be reminded of the fact that he was missing his boyfriend too. Of course.

(He wasn't trying to pretend the boy didn't exist at all. No sir.)

"I don't think so," Blaine replied slowly. "It's just- Something's off. He says everything is fine but. I know him. He doesn't talk as much and when I try to ask he avoids the question or cuts the conversation short, says he has things to do and hangs up. I-" He stopped, then let out a frustrated sigh. "There is something he's not telling me. I feel like he's not doing so well. I know it. So, please?"

By now Cooper had his lips pressed into a thin line - because he had little to no doubt about what was actually happening, why Kurt was so distant and distracted all at once. And it was exactly as he'd feared. Here Blaine was, stuck back in Ohio, pining and worrying over a boy who was most certainly beginning to forget about him already, discovering new things, meeting new people and letting the city sweep him away little by little. Cooper didn't think such a boy was worth the time or attention Blaine was devoting to him - but Blaine had asked, had asked that way in that voice, so all he could do was sigh and cave in.


That's how he found himself going out on a Friday night after having been home for less than an hour and retracing his steps towards an apartment he hadn't even thought about since the previous summer.

By the time he reached it he'd pieced together a pretty precise picture of what he would find if the apartment wasn't already deserted. He knew what college students were up to on Friday nights. He wouldn't have been surprised if he'd crossed path with one Kurt Hummel on the stairs, dressed in sinful leather pants and a clingy, glittery pink shirt or something, ready to go out and have the time of his life with people and boys who weren't Blaine - to whom he wouldn't spare a thought the whole evening, because who care about him anyway?

(Cooper did. And that wasn't something he'd let Kurt forget so easily.)

He didn't meet anyone as he ascended the stairs to the top floor though, and when he knocked at the door he barely had to wait before a girl trying to put in her large earrings and to brush her hair all at the same time opened it. He recognized Kurt's roommate, Rachel. She took one look at his face and got a vindictive smile on her face.

"Great, an Anderson," she said, voice cuttingly sweet as she ushered him in. "Not quite the right one but maybe it'll do and you'll manage to put some sense in his head," she went on, voice raising impressively on the last words while she turned pointedly towards one of the closed doors. "Meanwhile I think I've waited enough so if Mister wants to keep up his pity-party-" Her voice raised again to stress the word. "-he can do it on his own because I have a social life to go to."

She whirled around then, throwing Cooper an almost manic smile as she snatched up her bag and put on her shoes. "Have fun," she bit out.

Then she left.

Cooper blinked at the closed front door for a second, wondering what that had been about, before he shuffled forward in the living-room. It looked better than when he'd last seen it, filled with cardboard boxes and ill-placed furnitures. The couch had been pushed diagonally in a corner, a halogen lamp standing right behind it and a coffee table in front. There was also a bookshelf already crammed with books and other documents with the old armchair Cooper remembered from the move sitting right beside it. A table with two chairs was tucked against the half-wall separating the living-room from the tiny kitchen, and a green plant in a pot was standing on the floor right in front of the window, probably to enjoy the sunlight during the day. The wall next to the entrance door was lined with countless pairs of shoes, an overloaded coatrack and another small shelf meant to receive keys, mail and other odds and ends when the apartment's occupants came in.

When he began looking at the wall decorations Cooper realized he was stalling.

With a sigh at himself he stepped up to the door he remembered was Kurt's and knocked.

"For the last time Rachel," a familiar voice snarled. "No, I won't go out and no, I couldn't give a fuck about meeting new people right now so go away."

Cooper considered it was the best invitation he would get and opened the door.

He was met by silence.

Well, almost silence. Teenage Dream by Katy Perry was softly playing in the background.

Only Cooper was pretty sure it wasn't Ms. Perry's version - unless he'd been wrong all this time and the singer was actually male.

"You're not Rachel," Kurt said flatly.

He was in his pajamas, lying on his bed and hugging his pillow against his chest. But what struck Cooper the most was the state his hair was in - in short, it was a mess - and the couple of used tissues littering his bedside table beside a cup of tea.

Cooper raised an eyebrow, understanding better what Rachel had meant by 'pity-party' and feeling somewhat amused by such an overdramatic display (and relieved, but he wouldn't admit it, and worried because that scene screamed teenager, and he knew that if teenagers felt things strongly, joy as well as pain, they were also very quick to move on from them and forget them).

"We're going out," he announced before he had the time to think.

Kurt groaned and let his head fall back into his pillow. "Oh no, not you too." Then he glanced back up to glare and spit: "Why would I want to go out with you?"

Cooper threw him a stiff grin, ignoring the sting and telling himself he was glad to notice the dislike was mutual.

(After all Kurt would never win any point with Blaine if he let slip that he hated his brother.)

"You're not very subtle you know," he said, crossing his arms. His voice turned more serious and almost accusing when he added: "Blaine's worried about you."

And right now he doesn't need to have to worry about you on top of everything else.

Kurt pursed his lips when he heard that, obviously displeased. Cooper didn't dare hope that it was because he'd tried to pretend that everything was alright when it wasn't and because he was dismayed to see he hadn't managed to fool Blaine. No, he didn't dare hope Kurt could miss Blaine just as much as Blaine did him.

"So here's what we're going to do," he said, leaving no room for argument. "You stand up and get dressed, then we go out and we eat, so that I can say to Blaine that you're alive and that I even got some food into you. And you can tell him that I did what he asked when he asks and that you feel better. We're doing this and we'll both be better men for it and most of all we'll make Blaine happy."

Plus it'll give me the time to pry and try to see if you're not stepping out of line already.

Kurt was still glaring at him - and Cooper saw it in his eyes, saw him contemplate the possibility of a truce. You leave now and I won't tell if you won't tell. But then he also saw him realize that it would come down to lying to Blaine and reject the idea at once.

Kurt let out a long, frustrated sigh to show how annoyed he was by this all and grumbled: "Okay."

Cooper kept his arms crossed as Kurt shuffled over to the edge of the bed in order to stand up.

Hey, you've just gone up a tiny, tiny notch in my esteem, he wanted to say. You could be a bit more happy about that.

He stayed silent though, and went to wait for Kurt in the living-room.

Dinner was awkward, to say the least.

It tended to be when it took place between two people who'd spent the majority of the time they'd been in each other's company up until now wishing very hard the other would just go away. And it was even worse now that the buffer that was Blaine wasn't here anymore to stand between the two.

Kurt was still glaring, probably embarrassed by the state Cooper had seen him in. Cooper for his part was trying very hard to tell himself this wasn't going to be more difficult than a lunch with that asshole from their rival law firm he'd had to meet several times concerning a case they had in common.

"So," he asked once their orders had arrived and Kurt had begun eating, now pointedly ignoring him. "Teenage Dream?"

Like he didn't already know what that was about - like he hadn't recognized the voice singing back in Kurt's room.

(The Warblers had a partnership with a local recording team and always put a selection of their performances of the year on a CD. Cooper wondered how Kurt had gotten his hands on this one since he hadn't been at Dalton anymore come the end of that year.)

He was curious to hear what the boy had to say about it.

He was surprised when Kurt only threw him another half-hearted glare then sighed and confessed:

"It's the song he sung the day we met."

And he actually followed this up with the whole story of that day, words pouring out of him like he couldn't hold them back. It left him smiling almost wistfully.

The smile disappeared though when silence settled back between them, Kurt remembering himself and glancing warily at Cooper, like he was expecting him to make fun of him or belittle the emotions he'd felt. But Cooper didn't - actually couldn't - and only stared thoughtfully at him for a long moment before he opted for meeting Kurt's honesty with a story of his own.

"I remember the first song Blaine sung in an official setting," he began, ignoring Kurt's surprised blink. "It was for our mother's birthday - and he'd gotten the lyrics all wrong..."

A week passed, then another, and Cooper was all too happy to go back to things as they'd been before: work, phone calls from and to Blaine, more work and, twice a week, theater group.

But then Blaine got fretful again, and asked again, and Cooper gave in almost at once - again. Kurt was the one to open the door this time and at least he was dressed.

But still looking tired and quite miserable.

"You again?" he asked, eyes narrowed.

Cooper thought he should be grateful that their apartment building didn't have a code nor an intercom - that way Kurt couldn't simply leave him standing outside in the cold autumnal wind.

"Well, you still suck at not making Blaine worry," Cooper retorted a bit more snappishly than was strictly necessary. "So I guess I'm your punishment."

Kurt rolled his eyes but went to get ready anyway.

"I feel like I should be thankful you're so compliant," he pointed out as Kurt closed and locked the door behind him about fifteen minutes later.

"Well, it could be worse," Kurt drawled with a shrug as he walked down the corridor in direction of the stairs. "I could have to spend the evening with the Meerkat or-"

"Meerkat?" Cooper interrupted, eyebrows raised.

Kurt glanced at him - then actually paused, eyes narrowing in thought before he edged:

"Did Blaine ever tell you about Sebastian Smythe?"

Unsurprisingly, that evening went far better than the previous one, if only because they'd found one topic of conversation they viciously agreed upon.

("Why didn't you say anything?" Kurt asked towards the end of the night, his expression having turned thoughtful now that he'd had the occasion to inventively and profusely spew his bile. "If you still think so ill of him. I asked Blaine - I remember, I asked what you had to say about him forgiving what he'd done so easily. And he said, 'Nothing'." He paused for a second. "That wasn't nothing."

Cooper looked at him, pondering what to answer. But he'd found that honesty seemed to be what worked best with that boy - so he settled for that.

"I'm the older brother," he murmured, glancing down at the content of the glass he was holding in his hand. "Not the forbidding father, not the advisory friend."

Not the fussing boyfriend, he didn't add.

He downed what was left of his red wine.

After a while, Kurt nodded like he understood.)

No one was more surprised than him the following week when he received a text from an unknown number which turned out to be the Kurt's.

Hey. Got your number from Blaine, it read. Saw that Italian place not far from the subway. 8pm tomorrow? - Kurt.

He frowned at the screen for a second, then opened up a new message to send not to Kurt but to his brother.

Blaine, are you trying to set me up with your boyfriend?

And then, because he wanted to be sure Blaine took it for the teasing it wasn't quite: You're aware of how that sounds, right?

Blaine's answer came in a series of texts that left Cooper's phone buzzing.

I know.

It's just- he used to have family dinners on friday with his dad and then the whole family.

I don't want him to feel too homesick is all.

Please Coop?

Cooper bit his lips, remembering how he himself had felt during the first months in Boston - and he hadn't had a family like Kurt's to miss. Just his brother.

Plus it's not like you hate each other, right? Blaine sent then, like an afterthought.

Cooper winced slightly and typed back: Don't try the puppy dog's eyes on me they won't work I can't see them.

The expected answer wasn't long to come: *Puppy dog's eyes*

Cooper snorted at his brother's predictability. Traitor, he sent. And then: Fine.

He ignored the smiley Blaine replied with and answered to Kurt's text after he'd entered the number in his contact list.

8:30. Can't earlier, I have to come all the way from the theatre. -C

His phone buzzed one last time.

Okay. See you then. -K

He'd unwittingly found them a topic of conversation to start the evening though.

And like that the habit was born.

Thing was, Cooper realized quite quickly, he could come to like Kurt.

That evening spent bad-mouthing Sebastian Smythe in the most satisfying ways hadn't even been his first clue.

Kurt was a good kid - he was witty and quirky and kind of sweet underneath it all, and Cooper understood why Blaine could've been so charmed by him.

Plus it was nice to be with someone who could understand when Cooper talked at length about Blaine and, even better, who would really listen. It helped that Blaine was actually one of the only things they had in common (apart from a deep loathing for a certain individual) and that they both found that talking about him made missing him easier.

Yes, once he'd gotten over his petty and doubtlessly excessive jealousy due to how important Kurt had rapidly become to Blaine, once he'd let himself enjoy the boy's presence, he found that their evenings could be quite pleasant. He could almost come to look forward to them.

He could like Kurt as an individual. As an acquaintance.

But he still couldn't like him as Blaine's boyfriend. He couldn't trust him with Blaine. Especially not after what had happened the previous year. And even without that he wouldn't trust him.

Because he wouldn't trust anyone with Blaine.

He was beginning to wish that he could, though.

"There's something I don't get," Kurt said one evening, expertly picking up a sushi with his chopsticks to dip it into the soya sauce. "Why're you so suspicious of the people around Blaine? Don't you trust him to choose the right person for himself?"

Cooper was still wondering if their choice to be open and bluntly honest about everything had been a good idea. Especially when Kurt went back over things he'd let slip and hoped he'd forget.

"Well, like you might've noticed even before you two started dating-" Cooper began slowly - Kurt caught the jibe thrown in his direction but didn't take the bait, not even bothering to throw him more than a withering glance as he chewed on his rice and raw fish. "Blaine's not always the most clairvoyant when it comes to whom he chooses to be interested in. And he's not very good at romance."

Kurt snorted. "How strange," he sneered. "I heard him say the exactly the same thing once." He prodded at the thin stripes of marinated ginger gathered at the corner of his plate and muttered: "I find he does more than well."

Of course he did. Kurt might be the only boy in the world who'd actually like how over-the-top Blaine could go. Now that Cooper knew him better and had heard about a certain amount of the moments that had brought them together from Kurt's point of view he was beginning to see that they really were quite well-suited for each other.

"But still," Kurt went on. "It's like - it's illogic. Do you think he is that much unlovable?"

"Oh no, I think he gets pretty enough love as it is - I know how easy he is to like and love." Cooper shook his head, fingers fiddling with the wooden stick of one of his brochettes. "It's not about loving him. It's about loving him enough. Loving him always. Loving him right." His voice was quiet, almost inaudible when he added: "I don't trust anyone to do that."

"No one but yourself?" Kurt asked, one eyebrow raised.

Cooper laughed. "Hell, no. I most certainly don't treat him like he deserves. I fail quite spectacularly at it actually."

Kurt pursed his lips, probably caught off-guard by that answer, then picked up another sushi he chewed on thoroughly and swallowed. "You have a pretty negative vision of the whole human specie," he pointed out.

Cooper took a sip of his jasmine tea. "It still has to prove its worth to me."

"It won't ever succeed if you start from such a biased point of view," Kurt objected, frowning. "If you don't take a leap and trust someone for once-"

"I entrusted Blaine to the Warblers," Cooper interrupted, voice soft but firm and brooking no further argument. "It seemed like there couldn't be a better choice at the time."

And that shut Kurt right up.

Afterwards Cooper guessed he could feel grateful that he'd let the topic drop - that he hadn't tried to bring the conversation back towards himself, towards the issue of Cooper trusting him, that he hadn't said, What they did, I'd never do that.

Because Cooper was pretty sure that every single Warbler would've sworn the exact same thing not even one year earlier.

Cooper wasn't really surprised to see Kurt at the airport when he went to fetch Blaine on Thanksgiving. He was the first to catch sight of him though and therefore the first to reach him and hug him - and to keep hugging him. He could feel Kurt's frustrated impatience growing beside him, but who cared about him? Cooper's little brother was back, looking worse for wear but laughing as Cooper rocked him wildly from side to side, almost making them stumble, everything else could go to hell for all he cared.

Blaine did care about Kurt though, and about the fact that his boyfriend had bothered to come all the way to welcome him even though it wasn't necessary. So Cooper stepped back in the end and let them have their little reunion.

He decided to take the kiss Kurt planted on Blaine's lips then proceeded to deepen as a 'fuck you' not directed at himself but at the narrow-minded tourists arriving in New York and throwing them shocked and indignant looks - when they weren't watching with morbid fascination like it was yet another tourist attraction of the Big Apple. A mother slapped her hand in front of her daughter's eyes and glared at them but the withering look Cooper threw in her direction had her leaving before his brother and Kurt could notice.

Not that they would've noticed anything even once they'd parted, both looking a little bit rumpled and dazed.

"Hi," Blaine choked, a wide smile stretching his cheeks.

"Hi," Kurt whispered back, a slight blush coloring his face as he stared deep into Blaine's eyes, barely taking the time to blink.

Cooper managed to send Kurt back to his apartment and bring Blaine home in the end, but there was no helping it. Yes, Blaine was happy to see his brother again but he was ecstatic to get to spend time with his boyfriend, no matter how short his stay was going to be. It was obvious he wanted to make the most of it and that there wouldn't be much exclusive Cooper and Blaine time in consequence.

So Cooper forced himself not to mind and to accommodate. He didn't force Blaine into any alone time with him and let him bring Kurt along on Thursday when they went out. When he came home from work and theatre on Friday evening - he couldn't afford to take the day off - to find Kurt cooking dinner with Blaine in his kitchen he pretended not to notice that both their hair was still shower damp and that they had that relaxed, languorous ease in their movements, softly brushing against each other and exchanging small smiles and glances without really realizing how obvious they were.

He let Kurt sleep over because there was no use pretending and let Kurt whisk Blaine away on Saturday to show him all the small places he'd discovered on his own since the beginning of the year and wanted to share with his boyfriend. They were back for dinner and Blaine wolfed down his food, beaming and chattering happily while Kurt simply listened and it couldn't have felt more perfect.

And Cooper suspected it wouldn't have been if there had been no boyfriend at his brother's side.

After dinner Blaine took out the DVD he'd brought and on which that year's school production had been recorded - Singing in the Rain, with Blaine as an enthusiastic Cosmo Brown and a girl named Sugar Motta playing a disturbingly good Lina Lamont.

("Not Wicked," Kurt breathed in relief, because apparently the teacher in charge of the selection for the musical had hesitated at first. "Oh, heads would've rolled if they'd dared to do Wicked the year after I left.")

They plopped down on the couch, Cooper on the right with one arm thrown over the backrest and Blaine automatically leaning against him, a reflex born from years of watching movies together in the evening. Kurt looked a bit miffed at that, especially when he noticed Cooper delighted, bordering on smug expression, before he shrugged it off and curled in on Blaine's other side, resting his head on his shoulder and lacing their hands together.

Cooper felt it, the added weight of him pressing at his side, but Blaine only sighed happily so he couldn't complain.

They watched the musical, softly humming along the songs, and when it ended they didn't feel like letting go of their little bubble quite just yet - so they carried on with the previous year's show, West Side Story, which Cooper actually hadn't seen yet.

Blaine fell asleep before Tonight was through, letting out a soft snore that almost sounded like a content purr.

Cooper glanced down at him, at the fatigue he'd noticed on his features when he'd arrived and which revealed itself more clearly now that his face had relaxed. Moving slowly so as not to jostle him, he reached out for the remote control and progressively lowered the sound of the TV until it turned mute, one level at a time so that the next lively song couldn't wake Blaine up but so that he wouldn't start awake at the sudden disappearance of all sound either.

Kurt didn't move or made any remark. He'd probably heard and felt Blaine's breath deepening since he was more or less plastered against him.

"Great choreography," Cooper commented after a while, his voice so low it almost cracked.

Hurt hummed in answer, soft and smiling.

"He's good, isn't he?" Cooper added as Tony and Maria sung what was probably One Hand, One Heart, looking deep into each other's eyes. He remembered a time when Blaine getting that role had been questioned and wondered what Kurt had to say about it now.

"He's perfect," Kurt sighed fondly, with no hint of resentment or even wistfulness whatsoever.

They grew silent after that and Blaine slept on, blanketed between his brother and boyfriend like it was the safest place in the world.

The theatre group met on Tuesdays and Fridays.

Once the session was over the members didn't part ways though - they'd taken up the habit of going out for a drink afterwards. On Tuesday many people declined most of the time, because there was work (and, for Cooper, a phone call to make or take) and they didn't mind the jokes from the ones staying about it being 'a school night, kids'. On Friday though - on Friday Cooper was pretty sure he was the only one who'd never followed the group to the bar.

There was a girl in the group - a young woman named Judith, Jude for short, with curly red hair messily falling on her shoulders, the pale skin that went with it and dark, dark eyes, a young woman Cooper had smiled at on the first day because she'd introduced herself as a school teacher and had compared the stage with the platform in old classrooms, which had reminded him of Blaine.

She'd smiled back.

She always came up to him on Fridays and offered for him to come with them for a drink, no matter how many times Cooper had turned it down.

"I can't," he replied that one time before thinking, because he was late and knew how insufferable Kurt could become if left waiting for too long. "I kind of have a date."

He saw her smile freeze and dim at once, but she didn't hold him back and nothing about that scene really registered until he was gone and in the subway.

Still, she came to him the next week too, although looking more hesitant, more ready to step back.

"I suppose you're not coming with us tonight either," she said instead of her usual offer.

"No indeed," Cooper said, shaking his head, an awkward smile tugging at his lips. "Friday night dinners. It's kind of a tradition of ours."

She barely caught her smile before it slipped and nodded, wishing him a good night. He watched her turn away, knowing what she'd assumed last week and what she'd thought was to understand this time - and what her conclusions were.

(There was a huge difference between one single date and an obvious habit shared between two people.)

"Hey, Jude," he called, not really knowing what he was doing because this wouldn't ever lead anywhere. But as much as his profession encouraged it he found that he hated lies, hated dashing someone's hopes for no reason at all - or not for the right ones. She turned back towards him, curious and carefully not hopeful. "His name's Kurt."

"His...?" The pronoun slipped between her lips and she looked, for a second, hurt.

"He's my brother's boyfriend," Cooper went on, finding it hard to hold her gaze but refusing to let his eyes drop to the ground. "Blaine - he's in Ohio until he finishes high school so - we just meet up once a week and miss him very hard together." The smile came, automatic and embarrassed and placating. "It's kind of stupid, I know."

"No, no, it's not stupid," she replied at once, shaking her head, her hands nervous on the pearls of her scarf. "It's - beautiful."

Her smile was beautiful, reaching deep into her eyes.

Cooper returned it falteringly, then turned away and fled.

He flew back early on Christmas, before the holidays had begun for college and high school students - if his time with Blaine was going to be cut short once more because Kurt was coming too, then he'd use the privileges adulthood and a stable job gave him to choose the dates of his leave and be there first.

They had a Christmas dinner with their parents, that one evening in the year on which they all sat down around a table and caught up with one another's life. It was formal and slightly stilted as always, but the presents that came with it were surprisingly heartfelt for once. Instead of cufflinks or another tie his parents had gotten him a picture book from a photograph they'd remembered he liked and a couple of films for the analog camera he'd inherited from his grandfather but hadn't used since college. Blaine for his part presented him with a blank picture book in which he'd written a foreword stating Cooper didn't have any excuse not to fill it since he lived in a city as photogenic as New York.

Cooper used to take a lot of pictures before law school had come and made him give up on more or less every leisure activities he'd had.

Now he felt like his family was trying to convey a message.

He offered Blaine plane tickets for spring and the free use of his credit car if he wished to take Kurt out to dinner in a fancy restaurant for they two years anniversary.

Blaine spent New Years Eve at the Hudson-Hummel household and was adamant on dragging Cooper along. Since Cooper hadn't any other plans he didn't put up much of a fight and followed.

So he stood in the doorway to the living-room, leaning against the doorjamb with a glass of champagne in hand while Finn and Carole laughed over memories and highlights of the past year and Blaine and Kurt waltzed around the room, cheeks flushed and hands joined, swinging tipsily as they sang Baby It's Cold Outside. There was a story there, sparkling in their eyes as Blaine squeezed Kurt a little bit tighter and made him bend backwards by leaning against his chest on 'mind if I move in closer?'.

Kurt very obviously didn't mind as they lost themselves in their very own shared little world.

"I really wanted to hate your kid at first, you know."

Cooper blinked away from his thoughts and glanced at Burt who was standing beside him, watching his son and Blaine dance and stumble around the room.

"Kid barges into my son's life, turns it upside down and suddenly all I hear is about Blaine this or Blaine that," the man went on with a vague gesture of the hand. "And the first actual conversation I had with him was when he asked me to tell my kid about sex."

Cooper almost choked on his champagne then smirked as the memory of Blaine over the phone came back to him, Blaine worried and saying, I have to do something about this - because he remembered his own experience on that matter, remembered how internet had led him to see and learn things he hadn't been entirely ready for. It wasn't the worst way it could've happened, especially not after he'd gone to Cooper to help him sort out that pile of so-called information, but it hadn't been the best either and even then he'd cared about Kurt enough to only wish the best for him.

Cooper also remembered Blaine a couple of days later, sounding crazed over the phone, incredulous and terrified as he said, I went to see his dad to... to talk about it. Everything in his voice had been screaming, Oh my God, what have I done?

Burt sighed at his own memory of that encounter. "He's a good kid though. That's something no one could ignore once they've been in the same room as him for more than five minutes." He paused for a second, glancing at Cooper before he gruffly added: "I gather you're the main person to thank for that. You did a good job."

No I didn't, Cooper wanted to protest at once. I was never there when he most needed it, never said or did the right things at the right time. What he is now? He did that all on his own. But he refrained, because he felt that Burt Hummel was not a man who bore to be contradicted.

"You did a great job," was all he said in the end. Because no kid raised by Burt Hummel would ever turn out bad, he thought as Blaine and Kurt collapsed onto the couch after concluding the song with a twirl that went out of control, laughing and smiling helplessly.

Too bad all the best intentions and qualities in the world weren't enough sometimes. Most of the time.

"It doesn't make letting go any easier, does it?" Burt murmured after a while and Cooper had to drown his bittersweet smile in another sip of champagne.

He wasn't surprised the man got it so well.

He was surprised by what Burt said after a long silence though, still looking at Kurt and Blaine who remained sprawled over the couch, staring at their joined hands and bumping their knees together from time to time as they whispered half-formed sentences at each other.

"We love to have Blaine here - he never imposes." Cooper glanced at Burt and saw his earnest gaze. "He can come here as often as he wants, no matter when. We told him but - make sure he knows that, okay?"

Cooper swallowed around a suddenly tight throat and nodded, grateful when Burt simply patted him on the arm and left his side to join his wife. He closed his eyes and took a deep breath in, trying to push back the dread trembling at the pit of his stomach - because right here, right now, Blaine was dizzily happy, surrounded by people who knew him and accepted him and appreciated him, loved him exactly for who he was.

And it only meant that if things ever got wrong with Kurt he wouldn't only lose a boyfriend and dreams for the future, no. He'd lose so much more - he'd lose a family and a home he'd never thought he'd find.

Cooper couldn't let that happen.

His view had shifted, he noticed then.

He hadn't been okay with Kurt at first, at all, for reasons that were both right and wrong - and more wrong than right sometimes. But now that he'd repeatedly seen him and Blaine together, witnessed how they looked at each other and just seemed to click - now that he knew Kurt better and had had heard him, seen him talk to Blaine and about Blaine, well. He couldn't deny that there was something there, something beautiful and solid and precious, something that went far beyond him, far beyond Blaine and Kurt even.

It'd be two years soon. Surely they could - would? - go on the way they had until now, right?

And the best Cooper could do now was to watch over it and try to make sure it didn't weakened, didn't break.

Not that he could do much - even at the beginning, when his intentions had been pretty much the opposite of what they were now, he'd been more or less powerless. But he tried - he opened up more when he met Kurt for dinner on Fridays, shared as many stories of his and Blaine's childhood as he could, reminded Kurt of just how incredible Blaine was, of how lucky he was to have him as his boyfriend.

What mattered most though was that Kurt actually listened to everything he had to say, and agreed, and asked for more, and missed Blaine, and laughed when he gave his point of view to a story Cooper had just told, working out the small, harmless misunderstandings he wanted to be aware of so as to avoid them in the future.

Yes, all in all, Kurt made Cooper's new mission very easy.

(But there was also this now: when Cooper heard Blaine talk about the future, about the plans he had for college and New York and beyond, there was a hopefulness and a confidence in him which Cooper wasn't sure he would've gained had he remained on his own, safe but isolated in the halls of Dalton. There was a hopefulness and a confidence with which he stood up to their parents, confronted them and imposed his will even though his projects didn't match what their father had wanted for him. There was a hopefulness and a confidence that spoke of self-growth and budding strength.

There was a hopefulness and a confidence that made Cooper think sometimes that no matter what happened in the future, no matter how terrible that future could be, it would've been worth it.)

They had an extra dinner on Valentine's Day, which fell on a Thursday.

It wasn't planned, actually. Cooper wasn't even aware of the date until he caught the maudlin tone of Blaine's texts in the morning and it took him until noon to realize what had caused it.

He called Kurt out of sheer curiosity.

"I hate Valentine's Day," the boy wailed, because his past experiences of that day weren't that great, from what Cooper had gathered. "It just- It sucks, it just sucks. Simple, lamentable excuse for rampant consumerism and tacky, flagrant flaunting of an obvious lack of taste, I can't bear to imagine what the people that create those things are thinking-"

By then Cooper was finding it quite hard not to laugh.

Still, he wasn't going to let Kurt infect Blaine with his negative opinion on what he was pretty sure still was his brother's favorite holiday just because both happened to be in separate states on that day. So he kidnapped Kurt, plopped him down on one of his kitchen chairs, turned his laptop on in front of him and had him call Blaine via Skype while he set about to bake heart-shaped shortbread cookies.

It was a good thing Kurt was here, he found out later. The attempt would've ended in quite the tragedy if the boy hadn't noticed Cooper was mistaking the pack of salt for the sugar.

"So, how is your brother doing?" Jude asked that evening instead of her usual offer to join them.

Cooper was caught off-guard by the change, actually, and didn't know how to react at first. "Fine," he finally said, with none of the finesse that came to him so naturally at work or on stage. "A little bit nervous now that he's sent out all of his applications and has to wait for the answers."

"New York?"

It wasn't really a question, the tone slightly teasing for how obvious the answer was. Cooper nodded. "Mostly."

After a couple of seconds Jude probably realized he wasn't going to say anything else on his own.

"And the boyfriend," she spoke again. "How is he holding up?"

"Well," Cooper answered, checking the pockets of his jacket to make sure nothing had slipped out when he'd taken it off earlier. "He misses him. Which is exactly as it should be, really."

Jude let out an amused huff, then her expression turned more serious when she quietly asked: "And you?"

Cooper paused, then tilted his head to the side. "Half the year is already past. How do you think?"

She pursed her lips and hummed, looking dissatisfied with that answer for some reason. Cooper didn't leave her the time to press the matter and used the excuse of being already late to bid his goodbyes and beat a hasty retreat.

She was waiting. She'd made her interest in him known in that tactful way of hers, and now she was waiting for him to make the first step.

He didn't know how to make her understand that he wouldn't.

He couldn't.

"Blaine worries about you too you know," Kurt said one Friday evening while he was scooping up some hummus with the piece of pita bread cupped between his fingers.

Cooper glanced up at him as Kurt very pointedly focused on his task, recognizing the attitude the boy took on when he was about to broach a subject he judged delicate but refused to back away from.

"I thought it was cute. Blaine, worrying about his big brother alone in the big city."

Cooper frowned at the use of the past tense, at the hint that Kurt had thought about it since then, at the direction he felt the conversation was heading in.

"I know I'm one to talk," Kurt went on, noticing Cooper's expression and misinterpreting it - for real or on purpose for the sake of his line of thought, Cooper didn't know. "He worries about me too - and with reason. I mean, here I am, spending yet another Friday night missing my boyfriend with my boyfriend's brother when I could actually be out with friends. And I don't mind," he remarked, bluntly honest. "I don't want to go out with friends. But-" And there he put down his bread and raised his pale, piercing eyes towards Cooper. "Apparently, you don't either."

Cooper almost froze but shook himself right on time, swallowing his mouthful and bringing his attention back to the food he was eating.

He knew he wasn't fooling anyone, which was confirmed when Kurt determinedly pressed on:

"You never told me you couldn't come because some friends or colleagues or these people at the theatre group had invited you for a drink. You never cancelled on me because you had a date, with your girlfriend or with anyone."

Cooper glanced up from his plate with his eyebrows raised in a silent, And? Kurt only narrowed his eyes, refusing to let him play the nonchalant, evasive game.

"And it's not only on Friday. Blaine and I still talk you know," he said, stressing the word in reference to their first confrontation almost a year before. "And I would've to be deaf not to notice that I'm not the only one he has a long evening chat with next to every day."

He stopped talking then, waiting to see if Cooper would reply to that - he didn't look surprised when Cooper remained silent though.

"There is a reason why you're so happy at the prospect he'll come here," Kurt murmured, crossing his arms, all thought of eating abandoned in favor of plowing forth. "You know, I used to think he didn't care where he went for college - LA, New York, Chicago, Boston, anything, as long as it wasn't Ohio. And yes, I used to think he'd settled for New York for me, because I was coming here." He tilted his head to the side, a contemplative look on his face as he went on: "But he would've come here anyway, wouldn't he? He would've come here for you. Because without him you're all alone, you only have your job and not much else."

Cooper threw Kurt a hard, icy glance that had made seasoned lawyers wince. Kurt didn't even falter.

"I don't get it," he said flatly. "I mean, you're smart, you can be funny, you're nice when you decide not to behave like an asshole, you're handsome."

(Cooper was momentarily torn between being flattered by the compliment and wanting to glare disapprovingly because what the hell, Kurt was dating Blaine - he shouldn't even notice other people's face, and if he bothered to look the whole world should appear nothing but ugly.)

"You should be drowning in friends and love interests and invitations for an evening out like Blaine is. Yet you aren't." He paused for a long moment before he asked, very quietly but very directly: "Why?"

Cooper felt a crooked smile tug at the corner of his lips. "I really don't see why I should answer that question."

He got the feeling Kurt had to refrain from rolling his eyes in frustration.

"I asked Blaine, you know," he stated. "I asked him what could've happened for things to be that way. He didn't answer. He refused to answer." He pursed his lips, eyes refusing to let Cooper's go. "And I find that pretty telling all on its own."

"It only tells me I should be thankful for Blaine to respect my privacy given it's none of your business," Cooper said, aiming for a firm and calm tone, but his voice came out tighter than he intended.

Kurt noticed, of course, a victorious spark shooting through his eyes now he thought he was going somewhere. "What is it?" he asked, trying to press his advantage. "What happened?"

Cooper looked at him straight in the eye for a couple of second, then pointedly dropped his eyes back to his plate and resumed eating without a word.

"So what, it's only a one way street here?" Kurt hissed after a while, seeing that nothing else was coming.

Cooper focused on finishing his dinner.

He wasn't Blaine. He wouldn't storm out of a room to avoid confrontation - in that respect he was more similar to their father, who walled himself in silence, leaving no access to what he was thinking or feeling to anyone. Most people rapidly caved and gave up on trying to pry in front of such a blind fortress.

But most people weren't as stubborn as Kurt Hummel. Fortunately the boy had the presence of mind not to cause a scene in the restaurant and settled for fixing Cooper with a withering stare, leaving the rest of his plate untouched.

Cooper ignored him until he'd finished his own meal. He signaled the waiter for the bill, paid for the both of them and stood up from his seat, gathering his briefcase and jacket. Still glaring at him, Kurt did the same and followed him out of the restaurant where he opened his mouth, ready to start the assault again. Cooper beat him to it though by sharply turning his head in his direction and saying:

"Goodnight, Kurt."

He didn't know what Kurt heard in his voice or saw on his face, but the boy froze with his lips parted and didn't try to stop him when he turned away and left.

Cooper walked home and spent the whole way counting his steps and focusing on the simple act of breathing.

From: Cooper

To: Kurt

Let's just say, there is a reason why I don't trust other people with Blaine's heart.

From: Cooper

To: Kurt

But... I'm glad he's got you loving him back. At least for now.

From: Cooper

To: Kurt

Giovanni's at 8:30?

From: Kurt

To: Cooper


Kurt didn't bring up the issue again, didn't even try to tell Cooper he should talk to someone about it.

Cooper was incredibly grateful for it.

He wondered if it was Blaine or Kurt he had to thank for that.

Instead they started talking about spring break and the plans Kurt was making for his and Blaine's two years anniversary.

Cooper had to admit, he was impressed.

The only change he asked for was for Kurt to let Blaine take him out to dinner at least once, because he knew Blaine wouldn't want to pass on a romantic tête-à-tête. But on the whole, he approved. He was almost looking forward to seeing Blaine enjoying what his boyfriend had prepared, actually.

"Do you think you might begin trust me with him now?" Kurt asked teasingly, reveling in the praise Cooper had grudgingly given.

"You know what?" he replied, making what was left of his wine swirl in his glass. "I just might one day."

From: Cooper

To: Kurt

Blaine won't let me ditch theatre club to fetch him at the airport on time. Can I trust you to be there when he lands?

From: Kurt

To: Cooper

I wonder what makes that message so disturbing. Oh, wait. I know. Does Blaine actually call you every night to make sure you do your homework properly too?

From: Kurt

To: Cooper

Don't worry. I'll be there.

With the combination of Blaine's late flight and a surprisingly flowing traffic, Cooper actually arrived almost on time.

His phone buzzed when he finally found a spot to park his car.

I've got him, it read. Going to the Starbucks on the lower level to wait. -K

Cooper bit his lip as he looked at his screen then glanced up at the large building looming over him. After a while he rolled his eyes and, with a sigh followed by a smile he dropped his phone back down on the passenger seat. Then he settled himself a little bit more comfortably on his seat to wait.

Fifteen minutes, tops.

He'd just leave them to their reunion for a little while longer.

In the end, Cooper found out, accepting things the way they were didn't mean waiting for them to work out, or for them to be easy.

It just meant for him to let go and be here like he always had been, though the good and the bad, to keep a watchful eye and help when he could - the only difference being that he wasn't here just for Blaine anymore, but also for what Blaine had with Kurt.

And perhaps a little bit for Kurt himself too.

And maybe what Blaine and Kurt had wasn't going to work.

Maybe it was going to break - Blaine and Kurt would grow apart until something tore and fell in tatters to the ground.

Maybe it was going to disappear - Blaine and Kurt would outgrow each other and part amicably, perhaps remain friends as they went on with their life.

Or maybe it was going to work - Blaine and Kurt would keep on growing alongside each other and build something together that would be bigger than what they would manage all on their own.

But no matter what, Cooper would be here.

He'd be here at the end of the year, driving the car full of Blaine's belongings while Blaine and Kurt sang on the backseat all the way to New York.

He'd be here when Blaine started at college and both he and Kurt had to adjust to being so close once more but with different schedules, different friends.

He'd be here as they took the city by storm, making up for all the evenings Kurt hadn't spent out on his first year, but never letting go of their Friday tradition - and Cooper would join them sometimes, sometimes not, because he might gather his courage and go for a drink with other people, or pretend to finally get it and ask Jude out.

He'd be here for the first fights, the first doubts and insecurities, and he might even surprise himself by taking Kurt's side once or twice because even Blaine could be stupid and stubborn and petty and harsh at times.

And he'd be here when the fights resolved themselves, or when they didn't, when Blaine and Kurt held on or let go; no matter what, he'd be here.

(Maybe what Blaine and Kurt have will never break.

Maybe Cooper will have to let Blaine go once more, one last time, let him move out from their shared flat and into the one he'd found with Kurt after a couple of years.

Maybe he'll finally allow himself to burst out laughing when Blaine'll call him to tell him Kurt proposed, because the both of them have been approaching him for months, one for his blessing and the other for advice, and he was down to betting on who would get there first.

Maybe he'll get to be the uncle to their kids, a series of mini Blaines and Kurts he'll get to spoil and goof around with and be overprotective of.

Maybe he'll look at them one day and get to see a whole family there, his family.

Maybe, maybe, maybe.)

Cooper used to be quietly terrified of the day Blaine would fall in love.

He isn't anymore.

The end.

(To E., who'll recognize herself if she read this. With the promise that she'll find her very own Kurt among the countless Sebastians and Jeremiahs and Jesses in the world. Love you! 3)