Title: Used to Breathe Without a Doubt
Characters/Pairings: Kurt/Blaine, Burt/Carole, Sam, Finn
Word Count: ~6400
Ratings/Warnings: Spoilers for The Break Up episode and Glease promos
A/N: Title is from the song "Used To" by Daughtry. This fic was started during the hiatus and is very AU for most of the Glease/Thanksgiving eps.
Summary: Blaine's life was starting to spiral further out of his control. His parents were never home, his relationship appeared over, everyone seemed to look at him different, and nothing about his senior year was going according to plan. Blaine didn't think it could get any worse. But then he just had to go and hurt himself during rehearsal and end up living under the same roof as the one person who should hate him the most—Burt Hummel.
The hallway was crowded and loud, just as it normally was during the breaks in between class. Blaine hated it. He dreaded having to fight his way to his locker only to have the slamming of everyone else's lockers send spikes of pain through his consistently aching head. With a sigh, he leaned against the cold metal and wished that he could just go back home and sleep. Or somehow find a way to suddenly be in New York and crawl under the covers with Kurt. But that would mean he'd have to figure out a way to fix things with Kurt first.
It had been over a month since Blaine had made the disastrous trip to New York. In that time, he hadn't heard from Kurt once. Blaine had tried to give him space, but it was just so hard. He had sent flowers, text messages, voice mails, and even a few letters. But he had gotten nothing in return, except the box set of Gilmore Girls he had wanted to give to Kurt. Kurt wasn't ready to talk and he had to respect that, even if it made him feel like a little piece of him was dying each time Kurt rejected a phone call or dismissed a text.
Everyone had planned out senior year back in the summer. They'd known things would become stressful, what with the added pressure of trying to measure up to last year's glee club National crown and impending college applications. But things were starting to become too much.
With a sigh, Blaine started his locker combination and tried to stifle a yawn. He hadn't been able to sleep much; he felt like he hadn't had a proper night's sleep since Kurt had left for New York if he was honest with himself.
As Blaine switched out his books and grabbed his script, his stomach growled rather loudly, reminding him that he hadn't eaten. He had spent his lunch break in the library working on essays for his college applications instead of sitting down to eat with the rest of the glee club. He didn't really feel up to sitting with them anyway. It was just so awkward.
Everyone was still his friend, but it was obvious that they didn't know how to act around him. For most of his glee friends, who were pretty much his only friends at McKinley, Kurt was their friend first. He could see their disappointment in every look they sent his way. Even the newbies seemed to be uncomfortable with the situation, feeling the tension from the older members. After awhile it just became too much. Spending lunch in the library just made things easier…or so Blaine told himself.
"Dude, you ok?"
Blaine startled and hit his head against his locker. He groaned as the headache he already had intensified. He tried to take a deep breath before blinking up in the direction of the voice. "Sam? What—"
"Dude, are you ok?" he repeated. Sam leaned down to pick up some books Blaine hadn't realized he had dropped. Sam placed them back in the locker before turning his attention toward his friend. "You look exhausted." He moved his hand up to run it over the spot on Blaine's head where he had slammed into the locker. For once, his hair was free of the obscene amount of gel and allowed Sam's fingers to find the bump that was no doubt forming. He'd been too tired to bother with styling his hair like he preferred to do.
"Didn't sleep much last night. It just gave me a headache you know?" He shrugged, trying to act as if it was nothing.
"Didn't sleep?" Sam looked Blaine up and down for a moment, his face a mask of worry. "Blaine, when was the last time you actually slept?"
Blaine bit his lip. "I—"
"And don't lie. It's pretty obvious you haven't slept in a while. I mean, everyone's noticed in glee," Sam sighed.
"No they haven't," Blaine replied, a little harsher than he meant. "Sam, I'm fine. I promise."
"I appreciate it Sam, I do. But I'm fine. I just stayed up trying to work on college applications and my research paper for AP Lit. It's not a big deal. I'll get some sleep after rehearsal."
"Are you sure going to rehearsal is a good idea?" Sam asked in concern. "You seriously look worse than Batman after his fight with Bane, dude."
Blaine couldn't help but roll his eyes at The Dark Knight Rises reference as he shut his locker. "I don't have that much to rehearse, just 'Beauty School Dropout.' I think I can manage." Sam gave him a look that clearly showed his disbelief. "I promise! Come on, we better get to the auditorium, Kenickie."
Sam still didn't look convinced, but he dropped the subject for the moment at least. Blaine fisted his eyes as he made his way toward the auditorium. Today was the first day they would be rehearsing on the actual set that had been built. Beiste had enlisted some of the guys from the shop class to help out, and Blaine was more than a little surprised when he walked in to see it all set up on the stage.
The stage, which had been hell to take back from Sue, currently had some high school classroom props spread out in various directions. But there was so much more housed backstage. Neither Blaine nor Sam could get over how much stuff the shop class had put together on such short notice. There were some car parts lying around and a fake drive-in theater screen off to the side. In the other corner sat the "stairway to heaven" that Blaine would have to saunter up and down on later.
After taking everything in, they still had a few minutes before everyone else would start scurrying into the room, so Blaine and Sam sat down in the front row to wait. Normally, Blaine would offer to help move the sets and get everything prepared, but he decided to save his energy for the actual rehearsal. He leaned down in his seat, hoping that no one would notice.
He wasn't that lucky though. Sam squeezed his shoulder after a few minutes to get his attention. "You sure you're ok, Blaine? You seem really, I don't know, spacey."
"Just tired," Blaine replied around another yawn. "I'll be fine. Just need to get through this rehearsal then go sleep for the entire weekend."
"Man, I was hoping you would want to come over this weekend for Halo with the guys. Finn and I were going to try to get everyone to come and pig out on pizzas and stuff."
Blaine momentarily tensed in his seat before trying to appear at ease. "Sorry, but I really should try to get some sleep. Also need to work on some essays and study when I'm actually conscious." He tried to put on a smile, but it didn't quite reach his eyes.
"Oh," Sam sighed. "That sucks. You haven't come to a game day in weeks, dude."
Blaine bit his lip. He knew he hadn't been coming to then. In fact, he'd been avoiding them if he was completely honest. It was just so awkward around the guys half the time. They all were friends with Kurt too and they all knew what he did. Plus, there was no way he was going to the Hummel-Hudson house anytime soon…if ever again.
Instead of voicing his thoughts, Blaine put on the fake smile again and clapped Sam on the shoulder. "Maybe over Thanksgiving break next week. I should have some more free time then."
"Really?" Sam's face lit up like a five year old on Christmas morning. "That would totally awesome! We'd have the whole hang back together then! Mike and Puck should be in and Kurt can—crap!" Sam's eyes widened comically and he clapped a hand over his mouth at the slip up. "I'm so sorry, Blaine."
Sam was too busy stumbling over apologies to notice that Blaine wasn't listening at this point. He hadn't even thought about the fact that Kurt would be coming back to town for Thanksgiving. He'd been too wrapped up in everything else. The idea that he would be in the same town as Kurt with the potential to actually run into him again was both terrifying and exhilarating.
Thankfully, Finn walked in with Ms. Pillsbury and Coach Beiste following along behind him. Blaine hoped that they would offer the distraction he needed, but his thoughts continued to drift back to Kurt as everyone started the rehearsal.
Of course Kurt would be in town for Thanksgiving!
Blaine knew the holiday was important to Kurt; he had learned that quickly when they were dating. Kurt loved to get up early to start cooking. He loved the way the delectable smells from the food would waft through the house from the kitchen. He loved sharing it all with his family, which had included Blaine himself just last year. But not this year…
He hadn't considered the fact that he wasn't needed on stage for a good chunk of the play, so once he had done some background vocals on the opening, he was left with his thoughts backstage. His hands shook and his fingers itched to text Kurt about the following week. He barely registered anything else going on around him.
He jumped, dropping his phone, as a hand settled on his shoulder. He looked up to see Finn reaching down to hand him his cell. Blaine blushed and mumbled a quick apology.
"It's ok, man" Finn said softly. "You about ready to run through 'Beauty School Dropout?'" He studied Blaine a moment, as if trying to decide if the kid really should get up on the stage.
"Yes, of course!" Blaine quickly responded. He hopped up from his seat, swaying a little, and hurried onto the stage where all the girls were already taking their places. Artie directed most of them into their positions before smiling brightly at Sugar, who was already sitting in the booth waiting on Blaine to walk down the staircase.
"Blaine, go ahead up to the stairs and wait for the music," Artie instructed. Finn may have technically been the director this year, but Artie wasn't relinquishing his power completely. Blaine nodded and slowly made his way up to the stairs. The music started and he launched into the song as best as he could.
He just hoped he wouldn't screw this up too.
From their place in the front row of the auditorium, the teachers and Finn all watched as Blaine sluggishly moved through his dance steps. There were a couple of times that he looked as if he was about to trip over his feet or bump into Sugar. His voice didn't falter, but his movements were not up to par.
Finn leaned over to the others. "Is it just me or is he dancing worse than I normally do?" he whispered so as not to throw Blaine off on the stage.
The teachers gave Finn a look before turning back to Blaine. While they may not have voiced it like Finn, they were all thinking that Blaine was definitely off his game. Everyone could tell the breakup with Kurt was taking its toll. Blaine just wasn't the Blaine he had been last year during West Side Story. He wasn't the vibrant performer that brought tears to Beiste's eyes and made Artie want to jump out of his chair. Instead, Blaine had been overly emotional during his audition and backed out of any leading parts.
Even now it was obvious that his emotions were affecting his performance. They all watched as Sugar prodded him to keep going and finish his song. To most, the performance would have seemed just fine. But for those who had seen him at his best, it was a disaster. They didn't think it could get any worse. Then Blaine started to head back up the stairway…
He did the turn to tell Sugar to "go back to high school" one final time while on the stairs. He took a step backwards, swaying severely as he did so. Before anyone could react, his foot slipped on the edge of the last step. It looked as if Blaine tried to regain his footing, but it was too late.
They all watched with horror, unable to do anything. Blaine's feet went out from under him as he started to fall off the steps. His arms flailed out, looking for something to grab onto to. But there wasn't anything he could do. His face looked a mix of terror and shock. A loud crash and a sickening crunching sound echoed through the auditorium as Blaine's body forcefully crashed onto the stage.
No one on stage moved. The girls stared with their mouths agape, unsure of what to do. Beiste was finally the first to react. She jumped up from her place in the audience and hurried up to Blaine. She slid down beside where Blaine was laying in a heap on the back part of the stage. Emma and Finn seemed dazed until Tina's tear-filled scream broke them out of it.
Blaine appeared unconscious, with his face turned away from them. His chest was moving, indicating that he was breathing at least. But his arm—God his arm looked awful! It was bent at an unnatural angle and blood was starting to pool around it on the stage.
"Oh my!" Emma gasped once they made it up to the stage.
Sam, who had been backstage, appeared at Finn's side, eager to help his friend. He started to move towards Blaine, but immediately stopped when Finn put a hand to his arm. "Think we should stay back, Sam," Finn explained. Artie wheeled over towards them from his place behind the curtain as well. "You too Artie." For the first time that day, Finn was glad none of his old classmates had returned to town yet. Keeping everyone in check was nearly impossible now. "I know you want to help but we should—"
"Oh God!" Tina cried hysterically. "Is…is that part of his bone? Oh God!"
Beiste stood up from her place checking Blaine and turned towards them. "Emma, you should take Tina out of here and call an ambulance. I don't want to move Blaine on my own."
Emma nodded and guided Tina out of the auditorium, their high heels clicking with their quick pace. Finn, Sam, and Artie stayed up on the stage with them, but dismissed a few other students who were still there.
"Finn, I need you to come here," Beiste instructed. "I need to check him a little more but I don't want to move his neck. Come hold him still."
Finn nodded quickly and knelt down next to the fallen student. While Beiste moved down Blaine's body, checking it bit by bit, Finn stayed at his head, trying to rouse him without hurting him any more than he already was. "Come on Blaine," he all but whispered. He ran his shaking hand over Blaine's curls. He tensed when he felt blood on his fingers but relaxed a bit as Blaine stirred under him.
"Blaine? You with me dude?"
"Mmm," Blaine groaned before opening his eyes a bit. "F'nn?" He looked like he was about to sit up but Finn managed to stop him.
Beiste had heard Blaine and moved back to his head, kneeling down next to Finn. "You don't wanna move, kid," she said softly.
Blaine blinked up at her and gasped as the he felt the pain spike through his body.
"Shh," Finn soothed despite his growing panic. "You're gonna be ok, buddy." He looked to the coach for some type of affirmation.
She sent the boys a sad smile as she nodded. "You're gonna be fine Blaine. Just try not to move too much for me, ok?" She waited until Blaine nodded before continuing. "I don't think you've done anything to your back or neck, but don't want to risk it. You did fall from the top of that stairway after all." She rubbed his shoulder. "Just hang in there for us for a few minutes."
"Kay," Blaine breathed out through gritted teeth.
"Come on tough guy," Sam said softly as he slowly approached Blaine's side. "You'll be ok." He rubbed his hands the knuckles of Blaine's uninjured hand.
"Guess now you know how those poor punching bags of yours feel," Finn said in an attempt to make Blaine smile despite everything.
"What?" Blaine huffed. "What are you talking about?" He tried to curl in on himself but Beiste stopped him. "Are you seriously comparing me falling to me hitting a punching bag?"
"Pretty sure I've seen you hit one of your bags with just as much force, man," Sam replied with a grin.
Blaine tried to glare at him but didn't have the desired effect. Instead, he just closed his eyes as the pain spiked through his arm again.
"Hey!" Finn shouted. "Keep those eyes open for me."
"Not sleepin'. Just hurts."
Finn was about to apologize when he heard the sirens from the ambulance. He breathed a sigh of relief and felt his muscle relax ever so slightly. But not completely. He wouldn't be able to fully relax for a while now.
They all winced in sympathy as Blaine cried out as soon as the paramedics touched his obviously broken arm. He looked embarrassed and they all tried to look away. But none of them could. They all wanted to watch Blaine's every move and follow the paramedics' work, even if it was hard to see Blaine gasping for breath as pain seemed to assault ever nerve of his body.
Once Blaine was strapped down to a stretcher, everyone followed him out to the ambulance. Both Finn and Sam make an attempt to follow behind the stretcher and into the ambulance, but were immediately stopped.
"Sorry boys," the paramedic said sympathetically. "We're not supposed to have non-family members ride along. Just follow behind us to the hospital, ok?"
Finn and Sam were both about to fight the EMT on the subject when Beiste stepped over and put her hands on their shoulders to stop them. "Come on, boys. There wouldn't be enough room for you both anyway. You want to make sure they have room to work on Blaine, don't you?"
They ducked their heads and nodded.
The coach squeezed their shoulders affectionately and pushed them towards her car. "I'll give you a ride, that way you can try to call Blaine's parents on the way."
"I don't know their number," Finn sighed as he took the passenger seat.
"Wouldn't matter," Sam huffed, hopping in the back. "Blaine's parents on are some cruise-business trip extravaganza thing…I don't know what it was exactly but I'm pretty sure they are on a boat somewhere in the middle of the ocean. So don't think we can reach them."
"Did he say what cruise line they were using, Sam?" Beiste asked. She weaved in and out of the traffic as carefully as possible in hopes of keeping up with the ambulance.
"Uh, no. He doesn't talk about them much."
"What about Cooper?" Finn suggested.
"Think he's filming…somewhere. I don't really know." Sam tugged at his hair in his frustration. "He hasn't been talking that much lately. I just saw on Cooper's Twitter about the job."
Beiste sighed as she pulled into the hospital parking lot. "We'll figure something out. He's eighteen though right?"
Sam looked as if he was trying to remember for sure but Finn nodded his head. "Kurt celebrated it with him so yeah he is," he explained.
"Good," Beiste muttered, walking into the emergency room. "That's one thing we don't have to worry about at least." She stepped up to the desk to see if Blaine had already been taken back to an exam room. Once the receptionist had told her that she wouldn't be allowed back with her student, Beiste took the boys and found a few seats in the waiting room.
None of them were sure how much time had really passed, but it felt like a lifetime before a doctor stepped out calling for Blaine's family. His scrubs had a little blood - Blaine's blood- speckled here and there.
"I'm Dr. Adkins," he introduced himself. "Now, I normally wouldn't give out patient information to people who aren't family." All three of them shot the doctor a rather nasty glare. "But Blaine informed me that his parents were out of the country and that you should be kept in the know."
"Blaine's awake?" Finn asked, the shock obvious in his tone.
"Well, he was at first. Why don't you take a seat and I'll explain Blaine's injuries?" The doctor waited until they were all seated and ready to listen. "When he fell, Blaine sustained quite a few injuries, some worse than others. He has a minor concussion that we'll have to keep an eye on, but I don't believe that it will cause any complications. We already stitched up the cut on his head as well. He also has some bruised and fractured ribs that should heal just fine on their own."
"He didn't injure his back did he?" Beiste inquired.
"There is quite a bit of bruising, but no, he did not damage his spine or neck. He has bruising and smaller lacerations in various parts of his body where it connected to the stage. But nothing too serious."
"Good," she sighed. She was relieved to know that he hadn't injured his spine, but she knew the worst was still to come.
Dr. Adkins took a seat next to Coach Beiste before continuing. "As you could probably tell, his arm sustained the brunt of the fall."
"Yeah, his bone was sticking out," Sam mumbled with a shudder at the memory.
The doctor nodded. "It is what we call an open fracture. He is currently being prepped for surgery so that we can clean up any possible dirt and bacteria that attached themselves to the bone and set the break."
"He has to have surgery?" Finn squawked.
"I'm afraid so," Dr. Adkins replied. "I'm not going to lie, there are quite a few complications that can arise from a procedure like this. However, our team has dealt with these many times and knows what they are doing."
"Ok," Finn said, sounding like a small child.
"If you'll excuse me," Dr. Adkins stated, "I should get back to him. You can wait for him in the surgical waiting room on the second floor. They already know to keep you up to date on his surgery. But you should try to contact his family."
Before they could ask anything else, the doctor was off behind the swinging doors. Both Sam and Finn were left speechless, not moving from their seats. It took a lot of prodding on Beiste's part to get them moving.
"He's right we should try to get a hold of Blaine's family somehow," she said once they were seated in the surgical waiting room.
"But I don't know—oh my God!" Sam exclaimed. "I can totally tweet Cooper until he calls me!" Sam jumped out of his chair and started walking around to find the best reception for his phone.
Finn on the other hand looked completely lost.
"Finn," Beiste said soothingly, "he's going to be alright."
"No buts." She squeezed his arm.
Finn nodded dejectedly. "I don't like that his family's not here. Even if Sam gets in touch with Cooper, he won't make it and I think Blaine should have someone here."
"What about your parents?"
"Mom and Burt?"
"I think they would be the best alternatives for Blaine, don't you agree?"
"Maybe. They always did love him before…"
"I'm sure they still do. You don't stop caring about someone that quickly, even when they make mistakes that big. You should call them."
With a sigh, Finn got up and moved to where there was better reception. Sam stood in the corner, typing away frantically at his phone. Finn pulled out his cell and took a deep breath. He had to do this. Blaine needed someone there.
Burt looked up from his place under the hood of a beat up Chevelle to see his wife hurrying towards him. He had decided to come into the shop for a few hours since he didn't have any work for Congress to catch up on that day. Carol was already dressed for work but her hair was disheveled, something she never allowed since Kurt's intervention.
"Hey? Where's the fire?"
Carole stopped in front of the car with her hands on her hip and took a deep breath. "No fire, but I need you to come with me to the hospital?"
Burt's brow furrowed in confusion. "Did something happen to your car, hon? I can drop you off then work-"
"No, Burt, I need you to come with me to the hospital."
Burt put down the tools he had been using on the car and stepped closer to his wife. "What's going on?"
"Finn just called. Something happened during rehearsals today."
"Is he ok?"
"He's fine. But, Blaine got hurt. He fell down some stairs. They seem to think he was just exhausted and got dizzy."
Burt removed his ball cap and rubbed a hand over his head. He hadn't expected her to say her distress had anything to do with his son's ex-boyfriend, who he had been avoiding for weeks now. "How bad is he?"
"Finn didn't really know. Blaine's in surgery right now so—"
"Wait, he's having surgery?" Burt gasped. "Damn, just how high were those stairs?"
"He fell on his arm and the bone broke the skin."
"Jesus!" Burt leaned back against his worktable as he took it all in. He had always thought that he would've wanted to murder any boy who hurt his baby. And he had been tempted to hunt down Blaine after he had learned what had happened. But it was still Blaine, who he'd come to see as a third son over the last couple of years, and he wouldn't wish this on the kid.
"To make it worse his parents are on a cruise and can't be reached. Finn said Sam is trying to get a hold of Cooper but isn't having much luck."
Burt shifted uneasily. He knew Blaine's family was distant, but this was a whole new level. He couldn't imagine leaving Kurt after that breakup if he had still been in Lima. Hell, he'd been tempted to hop on the first flight to New York after Kurt had called. It made him wonder if the Andersons even knew that the boys were broken up.
"Burt?" Carole touched his arm gently.
"Come on, I'll drive."
With that, Burt handed over the shop to a few of his workers and headed out to his truck. He drove as quickly as Carole would allow to the hospital. His knuckles were white where he was gripping the steering wheel so tightly. His mind raced as he sped through a couple of red lights, not really noticing the honks and squealing brakes. He didn't know what to think about Blaine right now, nor did he know what the hell he was going to do once he got to the hospital.
As it turned out, he didn't have much time to really think about how he would react. Once he got upstairs to the waiting room where Beiste, Sam, and Finn were seated, everything just happened. Finn immediately ran over to Carole and wrapped his arms around her. She whispered something in his ear that Burt couldn't hear. Sam was messing with his phone, probably still trying to contact Cooper. Coach Beiste was the only one to approach him.
"Burt," she sighed in relief. "Thank you for coming."
Burt nodded succinctly. "Hate to see the kid alone.
"I know. I didn't know his parents were gone like that."
Burt rubbed at his ball cap. "They tend to do that. But we'll figure something out for him. Is he still in surgery?"
"We don't know," Finn answered instead. "They said they would keep us in the know but the nurses up here won't say anything. Blaine told them in the ER to give out his information and stuff. But—"
"I'll go back and see if I can figure out what's going on," Carole interrupted. "I'm supposed to start my shift anyway. I'll see if I can't get in on Blaine's case."
They all nodded as she walked away to go behind the staff only doors. Burt squeezed Finn's shoulder and took a seat beside Sam. "Any luck getting a hold of Cooper?"
"Yeah," Sam sighed. "Had to send him like a hundred tweets but finally got him to message me his cell number. Been texting since."
"And? Can he come out?"
"What do you mean no?" Burt replied a little harsher than he intended.
"He's working on a pilot for some new show that could get picked up. They told him if he leaves they won't hold filming. They'll just replace him. So he said he was going to stay unless Blaine told him otherwise. He hadn't been planning on coming home for Thanksgiving or anything because of filming."
"Damn it," Burt cursed under his breath. He liked Cooper; he really did. But that didn't mean he approved of his decisions when it came to Blaine.
Sam sent him a sad smile. "This really sucks, doesn't it?"
Burt sighed and squeezed Sam's shoulder. "Sure does kid; it sure does."
The small group settled in once again to wait on news. Burt's knee bounced in worry and nervousness. He still didn't know what he would say when he saw Blaine. But he couldn't let the boys know that just yet.
After awhile, Carole finally appeared in front of them once more. They all stood up, hoping she would have some news on Blaine's condition.
"He's out of surgery," she quickly said. "He's still pretty loopy, but he woke up for a few minutes in recovery and was able to talk to me for a bit. The surgeon was able to clean up everything, set the bone, and stitch the wound up. It will take a while to heal completely, but it could have been a lot worse. He'll have to wear a splint and sling until it heals to keep the arm immobile."
"So he'll just have one arm?" Finn asked.
"For now at least, sweetheart," she explained gently. "But it won't be permanent. His arm will heal. It just takes time."
Finn and Sam seemed to sag in relief, but not Burt. He knew it would take a lot of time and effort for Blaine to be back at a hundred percent, and he sure as hell wouldn't be able to do it alone.
"Did you hear me Burt?" Carole asked, touching his arm to get his attention.
"Sorry, hon. What is it?"
"I asked if you wanted to come see him? Sam and Shannon are going to go let everyone know what's going on then Shannon will drop Sam back off at the house. I figured you and Finn would want to go see Blaine for a minute though."
"Of course," Burt answered with no hesitation, because he couldn't let Blaine be alone. He had to figure out something for the kid.
Carole sent him a reassuring smile before leading Finn and him toward Blaine's room. They all stepped into the dimly lit room at once. Burt and Finn stopped dead in their tracks at the sight of Blaine in the bed. He was incredibly pale, making the bruising and cuts stand out all the more. His arm was laid carefully across his stomach, wrapped in thick gauze and bandages. His hair had started to come loose of his gel and curled against the pillow. But the thing that brought Burt the most relief was the sight of Blaine's open eyes, even if they were clouded over from the copious amounts of drugs.
When Blaine's eyes landed on Burt, he started to blink fiercely, as if he couldn't believe Burt was actually standing in his room. "B'rt?" he slurred hoarsely.
"Hey bud," Burt replied, stepping over towards the bed. Carole was already at his side, fixing Blaine a glass of water for his dry throat. Finn hung back by the door, watching everyone.
"You're here?" Blaine continued after sipping some of the cold water. He looked around the room for a moment, no really focusing on anything in particular. "Is K'rt? Did he see? I don't want him to see. I—"
"Shh," Burt soothed. He took a seat next to Blaine on his bed, careful not to jostle the boy's injuries. It wasn't too hard though, considering how small Blaine was compared to the bed. He'd always been slim, but it looked as if he had lost weight since the last time Burt had seen him. He reached over and squeezed Blaine's uninjured hand, avoiding the IVs as best as he could. "Kurt's in New York, Blaine. It's ok. Everything's going to be ok. How do you feel, kid?"
Blaine nodded slowly and attempted to shrug. But it ended up as a wince. The action told Burt everything he needed to know about how Blaine felt.
"We can't get a hold of your parents, sweetie," Carole stated, smoothing Blaine's hair from his face. "We did talk to Cooper. He's filming in California, but he said he could try to come if you wanted him. We—"
"No," Blaine interrupted. "He'll lose his job. It's why he's not home for Thanksgivin'." While Blaine seemed to be coming around a little more, his slurred speech still spoke volumes of how drugged he was.
"And your parents? When will they be back, bud?" Burt asked, hoping that the answer would be better than he was expecting.
Blaine blinked for a moment. "Um…I dunno." Blaine cleared his throat and seemed to be in deep thought. "They're on a cruise. Then dad has a business trip overseas…somewhere. Don't 'member where. Think they'll be gone 'til close to Christmas or something."
"We'll check with Cooper," Carole suggested, once again running her fingers through Blaine's curling hair. "Maybe we can find a number to reach them at."
"Why do I need them here? I can take care of myself!"
Burt had to bite his lip to not smile at the obvious pout Blaine sent them. "We know you can, Blaine," Burt said instead. "But it's going to be a little hard for you to do certain things with only one arm. They won't release you knowing you'd be by yourself."
"Oh," Blaine replied dejectedly. "But, but I don't have anyone else. What am I gonna do? I-I can't—"
"Hey, it's ok," Burt quickly soothed. "It's going to be alright. We'll figure out something. Don't worry about that right now. Ok?" Burt squeezed Blaine's hand.
Blaine returned the gesture weakly and nodded.
"You just worry about getting better," Burt continued. "We'll figure out everything else. You just get some rest, alright?"
"Yes, sir," Blaine answered, his old habits kicking in despite the fact Burt had told him repeatedly to forgo the sir over a year ago.
"You should get some sleep, sweetie," Carole gently suggested. She fiddled with his IVs and a blanket, making sure everything was situated perfectly for him. Before leaving, she leaned over and gave him a kiss on the cheek. Burt's heart broke a little more at the way Blaine unconsciously leaned into the touch.
The small family left the room once Blaine fell back asleep so they could talk without waking him.
"What are we going to do?" It was the first time Finn had spoken since leaving the waiting room.
Burt wearily ran a hand over his face. "I guess I'm going to call Cooper and let him know that we're going to take Blaine in while he recovers."
Carole sagged against the nearby wall. "Good. I was going to suggest that."
"I don't know what else to do," Burt sighed. "I'm not going to let him go home by himself like that. Poor kid doesn't handle pain meds well, does he?"
Finn and Carole shook their heads in unison.
"We'll figure it out. He can stay in Kurt's room so that he can have a real bed and not the couch. We're used to having him around the house. It won't be that hard." Burt hoped it wouldn't at least. He hadn't expected to ever have Blaine staying under his roof as anything but Kurt's boyfriend. But they'd deal with it. There was no way they were turning Blaine away at this point.
"I'm going to call Kurt," Finn spoke.
"Finn," Burt replied, "I really don't know if I can deal with Kurt knowing we're taking Blaine in right now on top of everything else."
"I won't tell him that part of it," Finn promised. "But I think he should know Blaine got hurt at least." Finn looked down at the floor. "I'd want him to call me if it was Rachel."
Burt nodded solemnly. "Go ahead, Finn. Just be careful what you say. I have no idea how Kurt is going to react to Blaine staying with us and I'd rather wait a few days to find out."
Finn nodded and walked off to call his stepbrother. Burt sagged against the wall beside Carole, bumping shoulders with his wife. She leaned up and gave him a kiss on the cheek.
"It will be ok."
Burt wasn't sure if she was trying to reassure him or herself, but he agreed nonetheless. "Yeah, we'll figure it out."
"I've got to get back to work," Carole huffed. "I'm on Blaine's floor so I'll keep an eye on him."
"Let me know if something happens, ok?"
Burt sent Carole a smile before she walked off towards the nurses' station. Once she was out of sight, Burt slid down the wall and sat on the cold tiled floor.
"This is going to be one hell of a Thanksgiving…"
A/N: I had planned on this just being a oneshot but then it was starting to become a bit too massive for just a oneshot. Hoping to have the next part up fairly quickly since I'm on break this week! Thanks for reading!