A/N Well guys, here's the end ;)
7. Le Digestif
Sebastian left La Vedette, but only after placing a yellow envelope on one of the tables. Kurt stared at it for minutes, wondering what it held – and mostly fearing the contents. He snatched it from the table and resolutely turned around to hide in the empty kitchen. It was still early, and he could barely believe all the things that had already happened today. Blaine loved him – of course Kurt always suspected that he had some kind of appeal toward him with the endless asking and teasing. Strictly lust, he presumed.
Love was something else.
It meant… more.
More smiling, more holding hands – more everything. And apparently Blaine wanted that with him. It meant cooking for Blaine, and for Blaine alone and vice versa. There was a time when Kurt listed spending every single minute with Blaine as his least favorite thing ever; he'd rather eat an entire habanero pepper. Except now Kurt wasn't sure what he wanted anymore – oh, fuck it, Kurt realized what he wanted not so long ago. Right when Sebastian mentioned Blaine, the realization hit him like a truck: he wanted more, and he wanted it with Blaine.
The envelope crackled between his fingers from holding it too tight, tearing Kurt away from his thoughts and back into the kitchen. His kitchen. The place he worked and created in looked cold now. All he saw was Blaine enter through the back doors, smirking at him arrogantly like he had a few days ago. He wasn't there though, but Kurt kept on seeing him – blabbering something obnoxious that didn't bother Kurt anymore, and playing around with utensils Kurt wanted him to stop touching – or continue to: he wasn't really sure.
The kitchen seemed bleak without Blaine. He wanted to share his station with him and push Blaine back to his space because he kept on stealing kisses instead of working.
Kurt was in love, wasn't he?
Made-up Blaine looked up from the stoves, smiling broadly when he saw Kurt and nodded at the envelope as if he was asking what it was. As soon as Kurt looked down to it, the Blaine he had imagined vanished and Kurt missed him already.
With shaking fingers he opened the envelope, emptying its contents on one of the counters and seeing photos of himself. He closed his eyes immediately, knowing exactly of what those were from – the morning he bought the truffles together with Puck. He had no clue how Sebastian found them or even took them without them noticing, but it was proof enough for an investigation. Still, this was something Kurt could take. There were hundreds of ways of getting out of the accusations, but when Sebastian threw in Blaine he crossed bounds Kurt couldn't reach. Usually if a health inspector takes notice of risky business he sends out a warning. Only Kurt had a feeling that was stirring deep within him that Sebastian could do a lot more than just a warning. A lot worse too.
He opened his eyes again, pushing the pictures away for him to burn later and found an airplane voucher, a ticket for a rental car and the directions toward Sebastian's new restaurant in Columbus. Not only did he want Kurt to stop working at La Vedette – he wanted him completely out of New York. Away from helping his friends and away from Blaine.
His heart was pounding loudly. He took out another item from the pile which was a contract, ready to be signed. A new job, different town and different kitchen.
Again he let his eyes wander around La Vedette's kitchen. It still looked bleak. A little voice in his head was telling him that he could do other things than remain underneath Rachel's dictator-like reign – start his own restaurant or travel again. He had been working in and out of restaurants ever since he returned from Paris and hasn't done anything relatively adventurous since. Unless he counted Blaine. And he did.
"What's that smell?" Quinn asked after arriving at the restaurant. She shrugged of her coat while scrunching her nose. "You haven't been trying to fry escargots again, have you? I mean creativity and all but –" Her voice faltered away at seeing the scene.
Kurt was standing in the middle of the kitchen, not dressed in his chef whites even though she was positive Kurt slept in them, and seemed to be turning off one of the stoves which was also the source of the strange smell. He paid no attention to her, only to the floor and it was until she mentioned his name she met with two rather broken looking eyes.
"Quinnie," he said softly.
"Is it time for cooler confessions? Because you have to let me take out the quails first." Quinn tried to keep it light with a little humor in her voice, but her hope was crushed the second Kurt shook his head.
"No." He looked away, crossing his arms and something crackled in his jacket. She took a step closer to him.
"Kurt, what's wrong?"
"You know," he said, ignoring her question, "I think you'd be a great chef."
"What are you talking about? You're the chef."
Kurt turned his head up and bit his lower lip as if he was holding back tears. That was when Quinn realized something was even more wrong than she had anticipated.
"You'll be perfectly capable of running the kitchen by yourself, you can pick a sous – but I would appreciate it if you'd pick Santana. She deserves so much more –"
"Kurt, what the hell are you talking about?"
"And you're the perfect sergeant to fight the war against all the other restaurants –"
"That's not my war," Quinn snapped and Kurt finally looked at her straight. She grabbed his arms and squeezed them. "I only intend to fight wars at your side, now tell me – what is going on? Why are you talking like you got fired or –"
Kurt swallowed, his eyes now filled with sheer fright. Quinn shook her head.
"No – no!" She started to shake him too. "Tell me you're not thinking about – quitting? Are you insane? You're – you're letting that bastard win? Did he do something? Did he – did he use you?"
"What are you talking about? Who - ?" Kurt frowned in confusion, wondering how much Quinn knew.
"That Blaine guy! Don't you dare play dumb with me, Hummel, I know a sex scene when I see one and I only know one guy that you talked about lately and who can cook – so tell me what he said!" She was practically fuming, feeling like she was losing one of her friends and was refusing to accept that.
"Blaine did nothing! He has nothing to do –" His voice faltered. Even though it wasn't Blaine forcing him out of his restaurant, he still had everything to do with it. "Blaine didn't do anything, I swear," he said much calmer.
"Then who did! You can't be quitting on your own," Quinn said, taking in a sharp breath, "can you?"
Kurt forced himself to shrug. "It's my decision."
"But is it your choice?" she countered. "This is your work, your life – why give that up because of someone? Hasn't he hurt you enough? With Paris and everything you said about school –"
"He never –" Before he got the chance to finish his sentence, the back door swooshed open and a rather deranged looking Blaine entered. He locked eyes with Kurt, and it took a simple gasp from Kurt for Quinn to realize who this was.
"Get out!" she said in a tone Kurt had never heard before. This was why she would be his perfect replacement.
"Kurt, please, talk to me –" said Blaine.
"I said - Get. Out," she hissed between her teeth and stepped defensively between Kurt and Blaine before he could get any closer.
"We can't leave it there," Blaine stubbornly continued. He looked rushed, crazy with his hair going all the wrong ways and nothing more in the world did Kurt want to wrap him in a hug. Quinn stepped forward to kick him out herself, screeching all kinds of things Kurt didn't hear because all he saw was Blaine.
Blaine who actually ran after him and dared to go into the kitchen while he knew some of the staff would already be there. Blaine who could risk a permanent ban from any restaurant kitchen if Kurt didn't quit his job.
He stayed frozen on the spot, hearing Blaine's last pleads as Quinn locked him out and didn't move until Quinn was back unbuttoning his jacket.
"You should change into your whites," she said as if nothing happened.
"We have a busy night ahead."
He grabbed her wrist to stop her and forced her to look up.
"It's going to be my choice," he assured.
"And when you make it, I'll hear it." Her voice was thick. "But I need you to stay."
"Why?" Kurt asked as calm as he could. "You're perfectly capable of handling this kitchen, not to mention Rachel."
"I know that, but –" Her lips quivered, and Kurt wasn't sure whether she wanted to cry or smile. Or both. "But you're the star of this restaurant. And we need a star in the spotlight."
"You have no idea what's at stake," he whispered.
"Then tell me Kurt – what exactly is at stake?"
Everything, he wanted to say but didn't. He looked away.
"Fine," Quinn said. "Just cook with me tonight. Don't decide before tonight. It's review season, people are picking restaurants for Christmas. We need you. I need you."
"Just tonight?" he asked and she didn't answer. She didn't want to know. He let her take off his jacket and usher him into the changing rooms to change into his spare whites. From his spot he could hear more people arrive – both kitchen and restaurant staff and felt like he was going to his own funeral.
His heart was beating loudly in his chest as he returned to the kitchen, feeling everyone stare at him. Not that he could blame them – the past days he had been happy and cheery and now he was looking like death.
Slowly he turned to look at Quinn, who was plating up the last few things for tastings and realized she did everything herself today. All he did was mention a few things for the menu yesterday and she filled in the rest. She didn't need him, even though she thought she did.
He slipped a hand into his pocket, reaching for his phone. Blaine didn't have his number nor did Kurt had his and it was safe to say he didn't want to know what Blaine would have done if they had switched numbers. He scrolled through his contacts and stopped at his dad's number – he for sure knew what to do or give him advice that would calm him. Except his dad probably only remembered Blaine from all those late night phone calls in which Kurt only expressed his dismay toward him.
"This just arrived," Santana suddenly said and broke his string of thoughts. He looked down at the yellow envelope with his name on – a very similar envelope to the one that was hidden deep in his jacket.
"Thank you, Santana."
She eyed him oddly. Her intuition was one of the most impeccable ones he had ever encountered and he simply nodded to assure it was fine, even though it wasn't. With the envelope tucked against his chest he turned back to the changing rooms. He almost went to the cooler again, but if that envelope consisted of what Kurt thought it did – it needed to be destroyed.
As soon as the door closed behind him he opened the envelope, having a strange déjà vu moment of earlier that day and only found a simple white page with an e-mail inside. He didn't even have to read beyond the first sentence where it was told that it had come to attention Chef Blaine Anderson was a neglecting chef. It would be a red mark on his reputation forever, and so easily sent around to all the important people.
There was nothing else in the envelope – no sign of Sebastian he could use to report his blackmail. Kurt was officially backed into a corner, but for apparent reason he still wasn't deep enough as he could hear the doors to the kitchen swing open and there were tapping heels approaching.
"Kurt!" Rachel yelled.
He took his time, placing his clothes into a bag and hiding the second envelope with the first in his jacket. Rachel called for him again, and with his jacket in one hand and his bag in his other, he walked back into the kitchen with his head held high.
Rachel spotted him at once. She had, not so surprisingly, a yellow envelope in her hand and Kurt could only guess she just received some revealing photos.
"What is the meaning of this?" she demanded to know, holding up the exact pictures he burned not long ago.
He gave one last look at her and the pictures before straightening his back and clearing his throat.
"People!" he said loud and authoritative.
"Kurt," Rachel hissed, but he ignored her and waited until everybody stopped with what they were doing. There was a quiet moment where only a few sizzling pans were heard in the background, and he stretched out the moment a little longer. He looked around the faces he yelled at, praised and mentored. Quinn stared at him with big doe eyes, knowing already what was coming and shook her head a little.
"Kurt," Rachel said again, "a moment? Private?"
"No," he told her and turned to the group after taking a deep breath. "It has come to my attention that there are a lot of factors needed to make a spotlight burn and a star shine. And that mostly has to do you with you. All of you. And –" He bit on the inside of his cheek. "And it defines a star when he knows when to bow and let the light turn to others."
Everybody stared at him god smacked. Kurt never gave sudden speeches and especially not so close to serving time.
"Kurt," Rachel said with a shrill in her voice, "what are you talking about?"
This is for Paris, Blaine, this is my Paris I never wanted and something you deserve more, he thought before opening his mouth and letting the worlds escape that would change his course of life forever. "I quit."
He expected a pandemonium, pan droppings and screams, but instead there was silence. Only surprised and shocked faces were gaping at him and from the corner of his eye he saw Santana grab Quinn's hand in comfort.
"You what?" Rachel then broke the silence.
Kurt bit his tongue – he couldn't believe he was going to say it again.
"I quit. Quinn, the kitchen is yours."
"You can't quit!" Rachel poked him hard. "I have no reason to fire you!"
"You have it in your hands," Kurt reminded her.
"This?" She held up the pictures. "Nothing we can't handle, I mean – he could be your –"
Kurt tuned her out, feeling his muscles ache and his body was vibrating with tension. She was still making up excuses for the pictures, even though it was clearly seen he was weighing truffles. A thought suddenly popped up in his head, and he didn't even hesitate before looking Rachel fair and square in the eye.
"I had sex in this kitchen." Gasps were audible everywhere, but Kurt didn't even flinch. "There," he added and pointed at the place where he and Blaine shared their first kiss.
The last thing he heard were a few shrieks, catcalls and Rachel Berry screaming he was fired as he resolutely left the kitchen in a determined fashion. He knew he had to leave through the front door, entering the restaurant area that officially wasn't his workplace anymore.
The New York noises welcomed him while stepping outside, clutching his bag and jacket tightly. He stopped for a second and stared at Cannareccione across the street. A little bubble inside of him hoped he would find Blaine walking around and seeing him, but of course only Sebastian was standing smugly behind the largest window with his arms crossed.
Kurt didn't spare him one more glance, walking away as quickly as possible. A few blocks later he managed to retrieve his phone from his jacket and dialed the number he had been willing to dial that afternoon.
"Hey dad," he said when he heard him pick up. "I'm coming home for a little while. I'm pretty sure you need my food more than the hungry inhabitants of New York."
His dad rattled something in his ear, but Kurt only focused on his own thoughts and walking. He had no idea what he had just done. All he knew that it felt strangely right.
Seven weeks later
"So Kurt, how is everything going?"
Kurt looked up from the plates he was decorating, freezing in the middle of placing crushed walnuts onto the side dishes and found his new boss staring at him with a heartwarming grin. He still hadn't gotten used to the charms of the manager of Merel, the restaurant he was currently working at as a sous chef in Boston - of all places.
He had stayed home in Lima for two weeks, fussing about his dad and feeding him his favorite versions of stress food. His dad had let it all pass by, waiting patiently until Kurt cracked and spilled everything. Kurt even told him he loved Blaine, and his dad simply replied that that was crystal clear.
People from La Vedette had tried to contact him, which resulted into a three hour during phone call between him and Quinn, him telling almost everything she needed to know and made her promise she would give him space after that. He still tracked everything going on at Restaurant Row, hearing nothing bad about both La Vedette or Cannareccione, meaning they were still battling fiercely even without him. It was good, everything was good. Kurt got the offer to work in Boston and after telling the owner his wishes and needs, it was granted without any hesitation. He was not to stay there forever, everybody working in the restaurant knew that and frankly he wanted to be left alone as much as possible. If it wasn't for his constant urge to cook; he wouldn't be working at all.
There was also this other factor that made him agree to work at Merel – which was the manager that interrupted him just now. Kurt could easily say that the man in question successfully persuaded him on working there with a simple smile.
"Yes, sir?" Kurt asked hesitantly, forgetting the question.
"Stop it with the sir, I don't call you chef either."
"Yes, yes, of course, sorry, so – Cooper," he amended.
"How is everything going?" Cooper repeated, flashing him a grin.
"Excellent, like I said before – working here is a delight. So is working with chef Tina." He side eyed his executive chef, not envying her position at all because she was in the middle of throwing a tantrum.
Cooper followed his gaze and flinched a little. "Yes well, he had it coming," he said and Kurt didn't even want to defend that because Jacob Israel really had it coming. "Anyway, I need you."
Kurt's eyebrows shot up, setting his ingredients aside. "Need me how?"
"I have a customer who wants to compliment the sous," Cooper said playfully. His eyes were sparkling with amusement, but Kurt felt his heart drop.
"I'm pretty sure the guest can wait until chef Tina can receive said compliment."
"No, no, you missed a critical part there – he wishes to compliment the sous." Cooper stepped around the counter, ignoring Kurt's stiff posture and started to undo his apron. "So, you go out there and receive the compliment yourself." Kurt started to move again when the apron was gone, reaching out to look at Cooper pleadingly.
"I really don't want to."
"Oh, come on."
Cooper started to usher him out of the small kitchen, ignoring all of his pleads.
"I seriously suck at customer one on one, for real –" He was pushed into the restaurant area where it was loud and cheery during the lunch shift. People were already eyeing him curiously and Kurt just wanted to disappear. "Really, Cooper, the last time I did this I threatened to poison one – I –" He was swiftly turned around to face one of the tables and his heart stopped before it went into a soft and soothing slumber.
The customer wanting to compliment him turned out to be the same he had threatened to poison.
Blaine stared at him frightened, his lips parting ever so slightly at seeing him after all these weeks. There was a lot wrong, Kurt noticed. One – Blaine was sitting at an empty table without any food he could have complimented. And two – the table was set for two.
"Hi," he said, and oh yeah hi – smooth.
"Hey," Blaine said, staring at him most adoringly. "Will you –" he paused, "will you have lunch with me?" He asked it carefully.
"I – I have to work," Kurt tried to say, but then the sound of bottle being popped behind him made him jump and he turned around to find Cooper unscrewing a bottle of white wine.
"Pretend I'm not here," he said solemnly.
"Ignore my brother, he's ridiculous," Blaine said and Kurt swiftly turned back to him, mouthing 'brother'. "Yes, although DNA is still pending." Blaine smiled a little, fidgeting with his fingers and looking at the empty space across the table. "You still haven't given me an answer."
Kurt glanced once at Cooper, who nodded encouraging and of course he would – he was Blaine's brother. He sucked in a sharp breath and sat down across Blaine, who wasn't doing so well on the nerves either. It was awkward at first, of course it was – what do you do when the man you love asks you all of a sudden to have lunch with him after quitting your job to save him in the first place?
Blaine swallowed, loud and clear.
"Y-you – you'll have lunch with me?"
"Yes, Blaine, otherwise I wouldn't be sitting here," Kurt said quietly, feeling a blush creep up his neck. Blaine didn't answer. Instead he started to search through a bag that was next to him and got out a book Kurt hadn't seen for years.
Hesitating a little, Blaine slid Kurt's old copy of Mastering the Art of Professional Cooking across the table so it was within Kurt's reach.
"Thanks," Blaine said awkwardly. "For letting me borrow it. Sorry it took such a long time to return, I kind of suck. Also ignore the little doodles and notes I may have…" His voice faltered when Kurt opened the book to find a heart drawn on the first page together with Kurt + Blaine underneath. "So, yes, sorry."
"Thank you," Kurt simply said and shut the book again before shoving it to the side. Cooper filled their glasses with wine to create a tiny pause between conversations. Kurt had no idea what to do or what to say and secretly hoped Blaine would break the silence, which he did.
"I know," he said and Kurt looked at him questioning. "About what you did." He placed his elbow on the table and rested his head against it. "It wasn't hard to miss when a Latina woman barges into your kitchen and threatens to chop off your cojones." He scratched his forehead. "I didn't realize you actually quit and left until she relaxed a little. You weren't at your apartment and I had no idea what happened or what to do. I was blaming myself until Sebastian told me, the prick."
"Sebastian told you?" Kurt asked, feeling a little lump in his throat he couldn't swallow away.
"I may have punched out the details," Blaine added dryly.
"Let's just say Sebastian has been locked up in his own restaurant in Columbus since then," Cooper interfered.
"So you could return to La Vedette, if you want to." Blaine looked almost sad about the thought.
"Or you could stay here forever and I will make sure everybody will worship your food –"
"Cooper," Blaine said, slightly annoyed. "Could you please be obnoxious somewhere else, you're kind of ruining my date here." Kurt's heart did a little swoop at the mention of date.
Cooper frowned for a second before realizing what he was really doing. "Oh! Yes of course, sorry Squirt." Blaine hissed at the nickname. "I'll go check where your food is and probably get stabbed because I lost Tina's sous again. You two go do date-y stuff." And with that he finally left.
"So," Kurt said, "what happened to Cannareccione?"
Blaine shrugged. "Wes can handle it. I only agreed on the job because I knew it was close to you, but… without you it didn't make much sense to stay."
"Why didn't you come earlier?" he asked a bit hurt and Blaine started to apologize right away, leaving his hands open on the table so easy for Kurt to grab, but restrained himself from doing so.
"Cooper kept it a secret you were working for him, he only told me yesterday because he figured you had enough space. I told him everything, about us, I hope you don't mind. It's just – he's my brother. My rock."
"I told everything to my dad," Kurt confessed. "He told me it was clear I was in love." Hearing Blaine's sharp intake of breath made Kurt realize what he just said and his eyes shot wide open.
"A-and," Blaine said carefully, "are you?"
He didn't answer. Instead he slid his hand into Blaine's open one and squeezed it gently.
"Okay." Blaine nodded, allowing Kurt to keep it quiet for just a little longer. "So, are you returning to La Vedette? They would take you back in a heartbeat."
"Quinn can handle it," Kurt said, mimicking Blaine's answer.
"Then what do you want?"
To kiss you. To love you. But mostly just you, he thought but didn't say.
"I'm not sure yet." Kurt felt Blaine stroke his thumb over his hand and the soothing gesture warmed Kurt's heart. "I'm not planning on staying here. Cooper's offer came in strangely welcome and now I realize quite planned."
"I had nothing to do with that."
"But I'm glad he did though."
They shared a smile, and Kurt realized he wanted to smile with Blaine always and forever.
"What would you like to do next?" Blaine asked. "If you're not staying here which will be mourned by my brother."
"Maybe travel a little." Kurt had been thinking about traveling a lot lately, get inspiration for new ambitions.
"Have you ever been to Italy?" They released each other's hands as their food arrived, served by Cooper who was excessively winking at the both of them.
"Hm, sorry what did you ask?" Kurt inspected their food for perfection and forgot about the question Blaine asked.
"Kurt," Blaine said a bit louder and he looked up from the plates to focus on Blaine. "Did you seriously quit your job because of me?"
"Not because of you –"
"But for me," Blaine quickly said, his eyes sad and filled with emotion. "You left to save me." Kurt looked down at his hands and saw his fingers were shaking. "You could have just come to me."
"I couldn't, Blaine, I needed the space. As you can recall it had been a hectic day." Kurt's lower lip started to quiver and suddenly a hand appeared on his cheek, forcing him to look up. Blaine was leaning all the way over the table in an uncomfortable looking way but he managed somehow.
"I just need to know why you did it. So I'm not making it up anymore. That I'm not making up that you cared for me so much that I was above your true passion." His voice was low and thick, with heavy breaths between words. Kurt covered Blaine's hand on his cheek with his own hand, lowering it before tightly grabbing his wrist.
"I love you."
Blaine's entire face seemed to open up in surprise – eyebrows rising and lips parting and Kurt didn't hesitate to straighten up and lean forward to meet his lips in a long awaited kiss.
"I did it for you," Kurt said between kisses. "And me. And us."
"Us?" Blaine gasped.
They broke apart, both of them falling back into their places looking bashful and flushed.
"I want to start over." Kurt licked his lips, still tasting the faint flavor of the cream Blaine always tasted like. "A fresh start, for us. We'll start over."
"I want to take you to Italy," Blaine blurted and Kurt froze. "Let me take you to Italy. We'll be alone, together and I'll show you all the places, please – let me take you to Italy."
"I don't even like Italian food."
"That's because you've never had real and good Italian food, it's a process you can learn." Blaine smiled. "I want to take you Italy."
"A-are you sure?"
"Yes! It'll be just us. And well, I've been wanting to see my nonna for a while now and I'm pretty sure I will make her life if I take you with me."
Kurt bit away a smile, reaching for his glass of wine to take a little sip. He stared at Blaine over the ring of his glass, who was just beaming.
"You want to take me to Italy for our second date?" he asked with a hint of a promise in his voice.
Blaine nodded eagerly, smiling from ear to ear before he let it falter a bit.
"And maybe –" He turned shy. "I can introduce you to my nonna as my boyfriend? As my il vero amore?"
"Depends," Kurt said, feeling sorry for the way he made Blaine's face fall. "Are we going to Paris as well? Since we're already in Europe."
Blaine knocked over an empty glass while surging over the table to demand another kiss.
"Tuscany, Paris, Rome, Amsterdam, Stockholm – I'll take you anywhere, tesoro."
"And I'll take you everywhere with me, mon cher."
"I love you."
"I love you."
The End. Fin. Fine.
Epilogue – Seven months later
That's Amoure – *****
Culinary Review 'Amoure' (New York City, NY, West 46th Street), Frenchtalian
Executive Chefs and Managers; Kurt Hummel (28, origin Ohio) and Blaine Anderson (28, origin Ohio)
by: Andrew Holst
It seemed merely yesterday that I had the honor of being seated at a small French restaurant where a star was rising – but only to see it disappear so shortly after.
But it turns out – some stars explode into supernovas and turn even greater upon return. Chef Kurt Hummel reappeared on my radar a small week ago when the new restaurant, close to chef Hummel's old restaurant which is now run by Chef Quinn Fabray, opened named Amoure. I was a bit stand-offish at the odd name and odd menu – but it turned out to be one of the best decisions I have ever made.
I even had the pleasure of meeting Chef Hummel, as he was both cooking and managing the restaurant that evening. He told me his alleged boyfriend and co-chef Chef Blaine Anderson kicked him out of his kitchen so Chef Anderson could have his turn at running it. Chef Hummel told me he didn't mind and was happy to answer all of my questions.
He explained the various dishes the couple created on their trip through France and Italy, finding ways to combine several classic recipes into new ones. Of course you can also order the original, but may I advise you, dear reader, to give the Tiramisu Brûlee a fair chance as I am pretty sure this is on heaven's menu.
After Chef Hummel left me to enjoy my meal, I spotted from the corner of my eye an exchange between the chefs. They were glancing at each other, sneaking in smiles between doors and seemed utterly in love. Which gave me no doubt that the name of the restaurant was perfectly chosen.
"You two make culinary reviewers sick without even the food," Santana commented after throwing away the magazine for Quinn to read.
Kurt beamed a little, sitting between Quinn and an empty seat belonging to Blaine, who was still in the kitchen. It was his birthday, and he was forbidden to enter the kitchen at any cost. He was that happy his friends, Blaine's old colleagues and even Cooper came to celebrate his 29th birthday at their very own restaurant. The idea came when he and Blaine had had a playful cook off with desserts and ended up eating everything combined.
They had gone through various fights, drama and a lot of making up while building up Amoure but after the opening not two weeks ago – it was all worth it.
"What's on the birthday menu?" Cooper asked, leaning back in the comfortable chairs Kurt picked out.
"I have no idea, Blaine thinks it's fun if I have no clue. As if me not being in control wasn't fun enough," Kurt said with sarcasm flowing in his voice.
"It is fun and you know it." Everybody looked up to see Blaine standing next to Kurt, handsome in his dark red chef's uniform and quickly sitting down the empty seat. "Everything is going to be just fine," he said and kissed Kurt's cheek. "Just let me indulge you and therefore indulge me."
"Well, bring it on because I am hungry," Cooper said.
"You're always hungry." Blaine rolled his eyes.
"Did you make sure –" Kurt started, but was cut off by Blaine saying yes. "And the freezer –"
"But Sally is –"
"Totally capable of everything," Blaine said and silenced him with a kiss. "It's your birthday. Indulge yourself, no work."
"There we go!" Cooper brought them out of their private conversation and clapped his hands loudly as two of Amoure's waiters appeared with trays.
"First course," Amy said with a smile. "Tiramisu."
Kurt started to splutter. "Seriously!" He smacked Blaine's thigh. "Dessert before dinner? You're insane."
"Ow," Blaine said with a pout, rubbing the sore spot on his leg. "I'm not insane, just creative."
"Chef Blaine?" Amy smiled even wider, nodding down the plate she was holding as if it was carrying a secret only they knew.
"Ah yes, I'll give this one to the birthday boy."
"Why, is this one poisoned?" Kurt asked with a smile, staring at Blaine with loving eyes while the plate was placed in front of him. It was the tiny gasp coming from Quinn that made him tear his gaze away from Blaine and down to his illegal dessert before dinner. That's when he realized why she was gasping in the first place.
His plate of tiramisu was much fuller than all the other plates. Around the center where the square of tiramisu was placed were the words spelled out in chocolate sauce: Will you marry me? and on top of the square laid a single silver ring.
He gaped at it, recognizing Blaine's handwriting and decorating skills everywhere and turned his head to the one who wrote it down.
"Yes," he said before Blaine could even repeat the question. Blaine's response was a mere puff of air escaping his mouth and he reached out to retrieve the slightly with chocolate shaving covered ring from the plate and presented it. It fit perfectly around Kurt's finger and witnessed by all their friends and loved ones – they kissed in their own restaurant as fiancés.
Endnotes: Well guys! That was the end of this Chef!Klaine!AU - thank you so much for reading and sticking around. I take prompts for this verse on my tumblr: daphodilly and you're free to leave a comment.
Fun little fact: Merel actually means Black Bird in Dutch, because I'm a language nerd like that.
I must thank my beta's: Riah and Kat - thank you both so much for squinting through my pathetic dunglish and helping making this story possible, I love you both :)
And of course - I love you too as a reader, I hope you're here to stick around for a different story perhaps. Thank you.