He keeps opening and shutting his eyes, over and over again, hoping for some change, a shape or something. Nothing happens. He waves his hand over his face, hoping to sense the movement, nothing. He can hear the nurse shuffle around the room and the heaving sobs of his mother, and the gentle whispers of his stepfather trying to calm her down, it's his only way of knowing that he's not alone, but he feels alone, not to mention helpless. He remembers what the doctor said, "There is a good possibility that you'll regain your sight over time," Which of course meant that there was a small possibility that he wouldn't, that he would be stuck like this forever. The thought brings tears to his no longer functioning eyes and he wipes them away quickly. He really doesn't like hearing his mother cry, it's just as bad as seeing her cry somehow, and he knows that him crying will just make her want to cry even more.
"Son?" It's Burt, he's known him more than long enough to recognize his voice. Finn doesn't feel like talking but he can hardly look at him in response, he doesn't even know where to look, so instead he lets out a barely audible "yeah Burt."
"Your brother is here to see you, he flew in from New York just for you."
"He didn't have to," Finn says quietly.
"The hell I didn't," The sound of Kurt's gentle voice instantly puts him in a better mood, which is odd considering that he didn't think anything could. He didn't hear him come in, maybe his heightened senses would kick in later.
"Oh Finn," Kurt says. Tears in his throat as he very gently touches Finn's bandaged head. "How are you feeling? Are you in pain?"
"Only a little," Finn replies. "Whatever they gave me is doing it's job."
"That's good, I'm glad Finn," Kurt responds, his voice still choked. He can't see him but he can imagine what he must look like right now. Kurt was always perfectly groomed and styled no matter what the occasion was, but right now he sounds… disheveled. He listens to Kurt's voice and pictures his hair in disarray and his pale, fine skin red and blotchy, there's a possibility that his outfit isn't perfectly coordinated either.
"My god son you look like hell," Burt says to Kurt, confirming Finn's suspicions.
"Would you lay off, I'm upset," Kurt shoots back.
"Don't be upset," Finn says reaching for Kurt's hand, and instead hitting the IV pole, Kurt frantically does the work for him, grabbing Finn's big, rough hand in his smooth one. "I'm okay, I promise."
"How's your memory?" Kurt says, sniffling.
"It's just little things," Finn responds. "Like the lyrics to Enter Sandman, I've known that song since I was twelve."
"Well I'm sure it will come back to you," Kurt says, trying to sound as comforting as possible even though his voice is still choked with tears. "I'm sure everything will come back to you."
Finn can tell that Kurt's words have a double meaning and he nods a little and forces a weak smile.
"How long do you have to stay?" Kurt continues.
"The doctors say my condition is stable, it'll probably be about a week or two," Finn says. He knows that he's not showing as much emotion about this whole thing as he should, the feelings are there somewhere, the feelings that brought tears to his eyes for a half second, but he feels better not dwelling on them.
"A week for a brain injury?" Kurt says sounding almost offended.
"I still have to attend therapy almost every day, I just don't want to be stuck in this place Kurt, I'm sure you can understand that."
"Of course I understand, but Finn are you sure that's good for you?"
"Kurt, try to give Finn a break he's been through enough," Burt says, and he hasn't spoken in so long that Finn forgot that he was there.
"It's okay Burt, he's just worried," Finn says, Kurt always worried about Finn more than anyone else, except maybe his mom, Finn has always secretly thought that it was because he liked being dramatic, but he knows it's also because he cares about him a lot. He remembers senior year of high school when his appendix burst on the football field, after he got out of the hospital Kurt spent the next week bringing him warm milk and his favorite films on DVD. And after Santana broke up with him he Skyped with him for hours just to listen to him mope and proceeded to send him an edible arrangement and a dartboard with Santana's pretty face on it. He would never admit how much he appreciated the sentiment, because anyone looking in would think they had the weirdest brotherly relationship in existence, but deep down he kind of loved him for it.
"Where are you going to go?" Kurt says, and he sounds like he's pulling himself together a little. "You can't go back to England all alone."
"I know that Kurt, I can't even afford the place anymore since Santana went back to Spain with her new girlfriend," He says, hints of bitterness still in his voice. "I guess I'll figure something out."
"There's nothing to figure out," Finn's mom Carole says, her voice still thick with tears. "You're going to DC with us, I won't take no for an answer."
They can all tell that he's not in love with the idea, but it's not as if he has much of a choice in the matter. He's a man without a home.
"Carole, doesn't Finn get some sort of say in this?" Kurt says carefully.
"He can't see Kurt," Carole says, stating the obvious. "He's going to need someone to help him adjust."
"Adjust?" Finn says, his voice rising slightly in pitch, he doesn't want to adjust, learning to adjust means that he'll be stuck this way forever, and he's not ready to deal with that possibility yet.
"She only means that you're going to need someone to help you around the house," Burt explains. And as the reality of the situation continues to dawn on him his breathing speeds up a little and tears prickle in his eyes again. He didn't even take the time to consider what being blind would mean for him when he left the hospital, would he constantly be knocking into everything? Would they give him a dog? Would they make him give the dog back if his sight returned? Would he get to name it or would he already have one? Somehow thinking about getting a dog calms him down a little, maybe because it's the most frivolous possible concern in regards to his condition.
"Look Finn, nobody wants to make you do anything you don't want to do," Burt says.
"Burt what are you doing, of course he's going to stay with us," Carole seethes, and somehow Finn can hear his mother's panicked expression.
"I didn't say I didn't want to," Finn says. "It's just, this is all happening a little fast. I'm not even out of the hospital yet, can't we talk about this later?"
"Honey, the sooner we figure all of this out the better," Carole says, trying to keep her voice calm.
"Carole, Finn's right, this is all too much right now," Kurt says gently. And Finn imagines Kurt has his hand placed gently on her shoulder right now, it's what he always does when trying to reason with his mother.
"Okay, we don't have to talk about it now," Carole says. "We'll figure this out together sweetheart I promise," At that Finn feels his mother kiss his forehead, and he forces a nervous smile, he's not sure if he'll ever get used to people touching him without warning.
"Carole, maybe we should give him some space," Burt says, probably noticing the look of discomfort on Finn's face. "What do you say we head back to the hotel for a little bit, get some rest, visiting hours are almost over anyway."
"Visiting hours aren't over for almost an hour," Carole protests.
"Carole, if it's okay I wanted to talk to Kurt alone for a little bit," Finn says.
"Okay," Carole says after some hesitation. "But we'll be back first thing tomorrow okay?" They both hug him at that point, making his body tense a little at the contact, maybe he should bring up the fact that a bit of heads up would be nice. It takes a good ten minutes for Burt and Carole to actually leave the room, but once they do he sighs in relief a bit.
"I'm sorry Finn, I know your mom can be a bit much."
"She's just worried. Besides, you're just as bad."
"Yeah but when I do it it's cute," Kurt argues. "So, how are you feeling?"
"Alright I guess," Finn says, shrugging.
"Well you seem to be taking it well," Kurt says. "I'm not sure if that's a good sign or not."
"Well the doctors said that my vision could return," Finn says. "I'm just trying to hold on to a little hope is all."
Finn can tell that Kurt wants to say something, but he bites back his words, which Finn appreciates, he knows what Kurt wants to say, that he should prepare for the worst, but there's just no point in trying to give him advice right now "Listen Finn, I know I said that we shouldn't talk about it right now, and you don't have to give me an answer right away, but…"
"But what?" Finn says softly.
"You always have a place with me, in New York, you know, if you want it."
"Really?" Finn says, and the truth is the idea of staying with Kurt while he recovers is far preferable to the alternative of moving back in with his parents, in a town where he doesn't know anyone his age, where his mother will pretty much always be around. At least Kurt would be out of the apartment a good deal of the time, and his roommate…
"Wait, what about your roommate?" Finn says. "What's her name, Rebecca?"
"Rachel," Kurt corrects. "Don't worry about her, as long as you're not better than her at anything she's a big softy. Besides, I'm sure she'd love to have another person there to bake for."
He knits his brow in contemplation, the idea really doesn't sound half bad, the only problem was getting his mother to go for it.
"Thanks Kurt, I'll think about it," Finn says.
"Okay, no pressure," Kurt says and Finn can hear his voice breaking again. "I'm just so glad you're alive, I don't know what I'd do without my big brother."
To be honest, he doesn't know what he'd do without Kurt either.
The battle that ensues when Finn brings up going to New York with Kurt is more intense than he ever could have expected. It's like the England conversation all over again only so much worse, at least back then he could still see. But after two straight hours of arguing and another three of the silent treatment, his mother finally budges. It takes finding the best neurologist New York has to offer and an agreement that she could visit every weekend for her to finally give the okay for him to go, and although having to get permission from his mother makes him feel like he's six as opposed to twenty six he's glad to have won this battle, After ten days in the hospital Finn catches the plane to his new home for the indefinite future. They discussed everything with the airline, about his condition and the assistance he would need getting into the city. Although Kurt couldn't take more than three days off of work initially he cleared it with his boss to get an additional day to pick him up from the airport and get him settled in the apartment.
He's only been to New York once, it was during a layover on his first plane trip to England. He hadn't even left the airport, now as he rides a cab through the city he wishes he could have taken the time to explore during those four hours. He hates not being able to see any of the sights, and he can tell by Kurt's silence that if he could see he would be excitedly pointing out all of the sights to him.
"So, how was your flight?" Kurt says lamely.
"It was okay," Finn says shrugging. "The seats are way more comfortable in first class."
"Do you like that book on CD I got you?" he continues
"You didn't listen to it did you?" Kurt deduces.
"Well I was going to but…"
"Let me guess, listening to books on tape just screams blind guy to you?" Kurt says sympathetically.
"I'm sorry Kurt I'll listen to it, I promise."
"You don't have to," Kurt says. "I just thought you would like it… especially the part where the guys dead wife comes back to life and starts stalking him across America."
"Seriously?" Finn says.
"Oh yeah, Gaiman has a pretty sick mind."
"Okay, maybe I'll check it out when you're at work tomorrow," Finn says shrugging.
"You won't regret it."
"So is the roommate home?"
"Yeah, she's been cleaning and baking all day, I think she's excited about meeting my famous brother."
"Famous huh? Just how much did you tell her about me?" Finn says.
"Just that you're twenty six, tall, single, attractive in an unrefined sort of way, and that you're a classically trained Shakesperean actor."
"Wait a minute," Finn says, knitting his brow. "You're not trying to set me up with your roommate are you?"
"What? Of course not, most of the stuff I told her was while you were still dating Santana, besides, if I were trying to set you guys up I wouldn't have mentioned that you don't understand half of the plays you've performed."
"I do too understand them," Finn says defensively.
"Without Cliff Notes?" Kurt continues.
"Well no but come on, I'm sure even Shakespeare had to use Cliff Notes every now and then, or you know whatever the equivalent was in the 1800's or whatever."
"Wow, how you survived there let alone thrived for seven years I'll never know," Kurt says, and Finn chuckles a little, happy to know that things can still be normal between them on some level.
"Trust me, I'm not trying to set you up with Rachel," Kurt continues. "But you should get to know her while you're here, I think you'll really like her. And god knows she needs more friends."
"Why doesn't she have any friends?" Finn says.
"She has friends," Kurt corrects. "She could just use more of them."
They arrive at Kurt's apartment as around noon, and Kurt is careful helping him out of the car. They didn't give Finn a dog, but they taught him how to use a red tipped cane to get around. It works well enough at warning him before he runs into something, and they also showed Kurt how to guide him around, Finn places one hand on his brother's shoulder and waves the cane in front of him with the other as they make their way to the apartment.
As he enters he is immediately bombarded with the smell of cookies, and the sound of the sweetest voice he's ever heard very loudly and slowly greeting him.
"HELLO… I'M RACHEL BERRY… IT IS VERY NICE TO MEET YOU… I HAVE HEARD A LOT ABOUT YOU… I AM GOING TO SHAKE YOUR HAND NOW." He removes his hand from Kurt's shoulder and offers it to her, and she shakes it firmly with her petal soft hand, and it makes him smile a little. "PLEASE MAKE YOURSELF AT HOME… WHAT'S OURS IS YOURS… WE WILL BOTH DO WHATEVER WE CAN TO-
"Rachel, Rachel stop," Kurt says frantically. "He's not deaf hon. Although he might be now."
"Oh, I'm sorry, "she says sheepishly, her voice lowered to a more normal volume. "Oh I made you 'welcome to the city' cookies. They're on the table, I can guide you there if you'd like.
"Um I think I can manage," Finn says, and he starts forward.
"Finn, your headed toward the living room, to the left… the other left… that's it." After a few moments with some verbal guidance from Kurt he reaches the table and fruitlessly feels around for the plate of cookies, he can hear her slide the plate over to where he can find them and he shoots her a grateful smile even though he could very well be smiling at the chair. He takes a cookie and bites into it. It's still warm and chewy, and crumbly and filled to the brim with rich milk chocolate chips.
"These are really good," he says, smiling at her.
"Thank you, you can have as many as you like," she says sweetly, and he really likes this girl's voice, it's sweet and feminine and loud and clear, not to mention extremely familiar.
"Your voice, I feel like I've heard it somewhere before," Finn says.
"That's probably because you have," Kurt says. "Rachel here voices a character on Imagingationville."
"That's it!" Finn says. "Sally the seal, I love that show."
"He only looks like an adult," Kurt says snarkily.
"Don't be mean Kurt, plenty of adults love Imaginationville," Rachel says. "Glad to know you're a fan."
"Actually I think you told me something about being roommates with the Imaginationville girl," Finn says. "I must've forgotten."
"I only mentioned it in passing," Kurt says.
"Well Rachel Berry, it's nice to hear your voice outside of the show," he says. And he thinks it's kind of nice to hear her voice period, he wonders to himself if she's as pretty as she sounds.
Weird writing from the point of view of someone who can't see, but I think I did an adequate job. Stay tuned folks!