1976, New York City. Blaine Anderson volunteers to take part in a scientific experiment to make some money so he can make it as a musician in the big city.
He's only meant to be frozen for two weeks...
2012, New York City. Blaine is unfrozen and has to deal with the fact he has been frozen for thirty six years. Thankfully lab assistant Kurt Hummel is there to help him...
'Ok Mr. Anderson, are you sure you understand everything? This is a very big decision to make.'
Blaine tapped his foot nervously against the metal leg of his chair, his eyes flicked between the sheet of paper on the desk waiting for his signature and the man in a suit sitting opposite him, looking at Blaine expectantly.
All Blaine needed to do was sign on the thin black line at the bottom of the page and that would be it; he would take part in their little experiment and get enough money to set him up for a whole year. He'd be able to afford a proper apartment, a better guitar and living expenses. He would be able to write and record his own songs and actually make it as a singer in New York City.
But the money wasn't being offered for free. A friend had told him about a great opportunity to make a lot of money fast. Scientists were making a lot of breakthroughs, discovering new things every day, and they always needed people to test things on. Blaine had been sceptical at first but as he had lain on the damp ridden mattress in the cheap hotel that served (and failed to serve) as his "home", he had wondered if it could really work.
And now here he was, sitting at an expensive looking mahogany desk, after a full day of people in white coats running every test imaginable on him, ready to sign the paper. With just one signature he would be consenting to being frozen for two weeks. He would go into the lab, be put to sleep and when he woke up it would be two weeks later, it was simple.
So why was Blaine finding it so hard to sign the paper? He was beginning to freak out about the idea of being frozen. The scientists had explained that he wouldn't die; his body would be in a dormant state at below freezing temperatures. But Blaine felt uneasy about that, he wouldn't exactly be alive either.
He shook his head, he could do it, it would be worth it to finally defy his father and sow him that there was more to Blaine than someone to take over his company.
'I'm sure.' He nodded.
Blaine picked up the pen with a steady determination and signed the paper, he would show his father he had what it takes to make it, that Blaine was meant for greater things than to sit behind a desk for the rest of his life. He dated the signature:
29th July 1976.
'Thank you Mr. Anderson. Now if you'll follow Mr. Peters here he'll take you to the lab and we can get started. See you in two weeks' He smiled at Blaine, his thin lips spreading across his face and immediately reminding Blaine of a snake.
Blaine nodded and stood up, the chair scraping against the tiled flooring, and followed the young lab assistant he had met earlier.
As he was led in to the laboratory, changed into a pale green gown and laid on the cold metal table he began to feel nervous once more. A nurse stuck a drip in the back of his hand and smiled at him reassuringly as she injected a small vial of liquid into the back of it.
Blaine felt the drug entering his body quickly, dragging him down into a deep, deep sleep as he listened to the machines beeping and the lab assistants chattering.
There was nothing strange happening but as Blaine felt the last tendrils of his consciousness slipping away something was said, something Blaine couldn't quite make sense of in the haze of his mind, but the last thing he felt before he fell asleep was a feeling of dread.
Bright lights seemed to pierce Blaine's vision and he tried to jerk his head away. Machines beeped around him and he could hear the gentle murmuring of the people working in the lab. He lay there for a while and listened; everything sounded much the same as it did when he fell asleep.
He briefly wondered if something had gone wrong, if he hadn't actually been asleep for long and was waking up too soon.
'The patient appears to be waking up, Mr Hummel keep a note of his heart rate please.' A voice to the left of him said. The voice was calm and authoritative, but not one that Blaine recognized.
'Yes Dr. Montgomery.' A voice to his right said. This voice was lighter, sounding sweet to Blaine's ears. He turned his head towards the sound.
'Hello? Sir can you hear me?'
Blaine tried to open his eyes, wanting to wake up now and find out how the procedure had gone, if everything was alright.
'Doctor did you see that? His eyelids fluttered, I think he can hear me.'
'That's good Kurt, keep talking to him.'
Blaine's eyelids were heavy and it took most of his strength to open one a tiny bit.
A figure came into view, blurred and distorted at first, but after a few seconds he could make it out. A young man was leaning over the bed so he was eye level with Blaine, searching Blaine's face for a moment before glancing back to the machine beeping by Blaine's bed.
'That's it, you're doing good.' Kurt smiled at him. Blaine took in the young man's pale skin, his pale blue eyes and the way the corner of his mouth crinkled as he smiled. He put more effort into opening his eyes; he wanted to see more of that smile.
It was exhausting but finally Blaine had both eyes open, staring at the young man standing next to his bed, clipboard in hand.
'There you are, welcome back.' The man smiled at him.
'How is he doing Kurt?' The Doctor walked back over to the bed and looked at what Kurt had been writing on the clipboard before looking down at Blaine. 'Hello Sir, my name is Doctor Wes Montgomery. Now, you're going to feel very groggy for a while but it'll wear off. I'm going to leave you in the capable hands of Mr. Hummel here.'
Blaine blinked at him and soon he was left alone with the young man he assumed was called Kurt.
Kurt smiled at him again, writing some more notes down on his clipboard. Blaine's mind was hazy and he couldn't think very clearly, but he knew he liked Kurt's smile, it was kind and made him feel calm.
'You're keeping your eyes open quite well now; do you want to try wriggling your fingers?' Kurt asked him after a few minutes had passed. It took him a while, his body was apparently very slow on receiving the messages Blaine was sending it, but eventually he was able to jerk his fingers. It was almost worth the effort to see Kurt's eyes light up with excitement.
'Well done, you're doing much better than the two we woke up yesterday, it took them hours to get this far.' Kurt scribbled something down, humming quietly to himself, seemingly unaware of Blaine watching him closely.
Within two hours Blaine was sitting up in the bed, glancing around the room with interest. It looked more like a hospital room than the lab he had been put to sleep in. It was quite big with a large window to the right of him. Sunlight was trying to seep in but the blinds covering it blocked it out.
A machine next to him beeped, recording his heart rate and other vitals, Kurt had explained. When Blaine had finally managed to tear his eyes away from Kurt he found he couldn't stop staring at the monitor.
It looked a lot thinner than the one he had been attached to when he was in the lab, as thin as a large notepad, Blaine thought. The monitor he had seen right before he had been injected had been bulky and grey, green, fuzzy letters on a black screen. The screens numbers and images looked crisper, sharper and in more detail than they had before.
'Don't worry, all that information didn't mean a lot to me either when I first started either.' Kurt said, misinterpreting Blaine's interest and sitting down on a chair next to his bed. 'Doctor Montgomery is on his way back in a moment. We're going to ask you a few questions ok?'
'Sure.' Blaine said, his voice was still a little raspy but Kurt had given him some ice chips. Apparently they didn't want to shock his body by giving him a glass of water.
Kurt placed the clipboard at the end of Blaine's bed, picking up from his pocket a small black square. He started jabbing at it with his finger until Dr. Montgomery came back into the room.
'Welcome back.' The Doctor said, sitting down in a chair on the opposite side of the bed to Kurt and looked over his notes. 'Now then, I'm going to ask you a few questions and Mr. Hummel here is going to write down the answers ok?'
'Can you tell me your name?'
'Blaine Anderson.' Kurt jabbed his finger at the small black thing he was holding and Blaine frowned, wasn't he supposed to be writing this down?
'And do you know what is happening at the moment?'
'Um, I'm waking up from being frozen?' Blaine somehow felt as though this was somehow a trick question.
'Do you remember why you were frozen?'
'I volunteered to take part in an experiment for some money.' They weren't trying to get out of paying him were they? He needed that money.
'And what was the date you were frozen?' The Doctor asked. Blaine hesitated slightly as he felt tension arise in the room.
'The twenty ninth of July.'
'Which year?' Doctor Montgomery looked at Blaine over the rims of his glasses.
'Nineteen seventy six.'
'And how long were you meant to be frozen for? Do you remember?'
Blaine paused for a moment, 'meant to be'? The Doctor's tone made him feel uneasy. What did he mean by that? 'Just two weeks.'
The Doctor gave a pointed look to Kurt and Blaine followed his gaze. He caught Kurt's eye for a brief second before the young man looked away. For a second he had seen something akin to pity in Kurt's eyes and Blaine felt his stomach clench. Something was going on and he was sure he wouldn't like it.
'Ok Mr. Anderson-'
'Blaine.' He interjected. People called him Mr. Anderson when he was at his dad's company, dressed in a confining suit and pretending to be someone he was not, he didn't like the moniker.
'Blaine, I have something to tell you, something you will not like, but I promise you that we will look after you ok?'
Blaine nodded wearily; he heart began to pound in his chest, the beeping of the monitor speeding up with it, announcing his fear to the whole room.
'Blaine, the year is two thousand and twelve; you've been frozen for thirty six years.'
Blaine felt as though someone had punched him in the gut, all the air suddenly sucked from his lungs.
Thirty six years.
'That can't be right.' He insisted, his first instinct was to head towards denial and he too it. 'I was only meant to be frozen for two weeks, they were trying out a new system and needed results fast, they couldn't leave me for thirty six years.'
Thirty six years!
'Blaine, this company took over the lab six months ago and we don't know what has happened, but we promise we're going to look after you.' The Doctor laid a hand on Blaine's shoulder reassuringly, but Blaine could hardly feel it.
'I need to be alone.' Blaine whispered, staring at his hands gripping the blanket that was covering him.
The Doctor and his assistant left the room, closing the door behind them.
'Thirty six years.' Blaine chocked out. How had he been frozen for thirty six years? They had promised him it would only be two weeks, that two weeks was all they had needed. How had things gone so wrong that he had been left for thirty six years?
Had they forgotten about him? Or lied to him? Had that been their plan all along; to lure people into their lab and to freeze them for years and years?
Tears ran down his cheeks before he even realised he was crying and but strangely he felt numb, as if it were all too much for him to take in.
What had happened to his family? Did they even know what had happened to him? He hadn't told them what he was doing; he didn't want them to know he needed to be experimented upon in order to make money to achieve his dream.
Soon the gravity of the situation caught up with him and he didn't hold back the sobs that racked his body.
Kurt sat at his desk set off to one side of the lab, watching Blaine on his computer screen feeding from the camera in his room.
He had taken the intern job in the lab to earn money during the summer, needing more money than the usually shops or coffee bars had been able to pay him over the last few years as he made his way through college.
On his first day the man showing him around the lab had explained to him its situation. The company had just taken over the lab six months before. It covered a lot of different areas but Kurt was to be situated in the cryogenics lab to help out with the doctors and lab assistants.
When the lab had been taken over everything seemed fine, but two weeks into Kurt's internship they had discovered another lab hidden away. Inside were seven people, frozen in time in their individual capsules.
There were no notes to accompany any of them. No names or dates or stats, just their physical bodies.
Doctor Montgomery was a young doctor, but thanks to the influence his father had over the company he had been put in charge of the cryogenics lab. It had been his decision to wake the individuals up, deciding it was the only way to get the information they needed.
So far they had unfrozen two other men and one woman. One of the men and the woman had been frozen in the late nineties, they hadn't even known they were going to be frozen at all, but they seemed to be adjusting to 2012 quite well.
The other man had been a volunteer like Blaine from the early nineties, he was shocked at first but seemed to deal with it quite well when he had learned they had made all his favourite comic books into films.
But Blaine seemed to have come the furthest so far. Thirty six years was a long time and Kurt could understand the young man's distress.
He stroked a finger over Blaine's image on his computer screen. He looked so scared and hopeless, curled up on the bed with his arms wrapped around his knees as he sobbed. Kurt couldn't imagine how he would feel in Blaine's situation. He seemed so normal, how did he end up being frozen for thirty six years when it was only meant to be for two?