A/N: Hello, lovelies. It's been a while hasn't it? Lots going on in the life of Zane. Work, classes, papers, surgery, just put one cat to sleep two weeks ago and gotta put the other down tomorrow. So this new little project was my NaNoWriMo novel for this year. Kinda decided it spur of the moment type deal. This story is basically my headcanon from 4.04 and onward for Klaine this season. It does NOT line up with canon beyond that, though as I've been writing I've been trying to incorporate as many spoilers as I can.
I've been posting this on tumblr a bit here and there as I go along, and I figured now that NaNoWriMo is over (and I've hit the 50k mark though am in no way done) that I would begin posting it up here. So far I've written October, November, and December for it. I'm taking a break from this to give some time to Only a Fortnight in Your Arms and my last two papers, but this one while fully span through Valentine's Day and their reunion, and then have a few moments for March, April, and May to fully stabilize their relationship.
So yeah, I'll be updating this with the portions already written over the next few weeks while I work on OAFIYA and then flip back to this once I've updated the other a few times.
Enjoy my super long Klaine reunion headcanon!
October was static.
Blaine cried a lot; more than he ever had in his entire life. The fits of tears came in unexpected bursts and hit him like a left hook to the face. Nothing felt real or mobile. It was all unaltered and frozen inside of his mind, but the self-loathing pain that ripped through his chest changed. It progressed and tightened, became fixed and hardened as a permanent lump in the back of his throat.
But through it all, Blaine only felt worse, guiltier. He didn't deserve to cry over what he'd lost – what he'd thrown away for a cheap night with a guy who's last name he didn't even know.
He tried not to think about anything that had happened between the day Kurt had called him from work and his return from New York. Maybe if he ignored it long enough, it would stop existing. Maybe this time pretending like something terrible hadn't happened would erase all traces of it from his mind. But nightmares started happening, and he still texted Kurt in vain just to talk them over.
Three weeks. He hadn't managed three weeks without Kurt, and now he was looking at a lifetime. Something monstrous and self-deprecating settled in his chest every time he acknowledged the truth of it, craving out the emptiness in his heart and taking refuge from his decency.
Everything around him seemed hollow as the weeks since New York passed. Nobody went out of their way to talk to him and he didn't make any effort to change that. Finn had taken over the Glee Club in Schuester's absence, the newest members were excited to participate in their first school musical, and Blaine felt flat. Empty, heartless and dehumanized in a way that made him squirm.
None of it mattered. Nothing at McKinley had mattered since Kurt left, and despite his own guilt and regret for what he'd done, the realization unnerved him more than anything else.
Auditions for Grease rolled around towards the end of the month, and it was only because Blaine knew everyone expected him to try out that he did. The expectation that he would be the male lead two years running was high. Artie already wanted to take his measures for a jacket and jeans, and was discussing hair options that would work best and that Blaine might go along with.
It all made Blaine feel sicker, more undeserving and worthless than he had been last time. He couldn't manage to hold himself together for more than few days, how was he ever going to pull off playing Danny?
The answer presented itself to him during his audition the week before Halloween. He'd already watched Marley, Unique, Tina, and even the rude cheerleader girl have their shot at Sandy, and now he was fairly sure he knew which girl had won that role. But as he stepped up for his own audition everything felt heavy and wrong.
Hopelessly Devoted to You was the last song he should ever be singing after what he'd done. Kurt had the right to sing it at the top of his lungs, but he didn't. Maybe that was why he'd chosen it, because he knew in his heart that it guaranteed his failure right now.
And it did. He completely tanked after the first verse, choking up with his voice cracking and dropping until it disappeared from the auditorium. Blaine kept his gaze locked on his shoes so the judges – Mike, Santana, Mercedes, and Finn – wouldn't notice the tears running down his cheeks. From his lonely spotlight on the stage Blaine heard their whispers, uncertain and even slightly concerned.
"Dude, um," Finn's confused voice spoke into the microphone as the whispers stopped. Blaine could feel all of the eyes on him, the ones behind the curtains surrounding him and directly out in the audience. He was out of his mind for auditioning this year. Right now he couldn't even manage himself.
"You, err, didn't finish the um, song," Finn faltered.
"Really, Finn?" Mercedes muffled voice cut in sharply. "Did you actually expect him to when he's singing that?"
"Guys, come on, don't– "
But Blaine took off before he heard the rest of Mike's words. Tears fell fast and hot as he stumbled out the stage's side door and into the hall. He managed to duck into the boys' bathroom right around the corner because his stomach bubbled up and out of his throat.
When Blaine was heaving up nothing, he finally collapsed to the floor beside the trash can and curled in on himself.
He was the biggest asshole in the world. Kurt was allowed to hate him and ignore him after he'd cheated. The friends Kurt still had here were allowed to do the same. Anybody who'd done what he'd done a few short weeks ago deserved everything he was feeling right now. Nothing was going to change it or make any of this right, and somehow he was going to have to accept that the biggest mistake of his life meant losing the one thing that gave his life meaning.
Hours later Blaine made his way to the locker room to clean himself up. When he entered he thought it was empty, but the sound of voices around the corner made Blaine flinch. He didn't pause to listen to who it was, knowing only that he didn't want company right now.
He unlocked his gym locker and dug his bag out, including the toothbrush he kept in there. Kurt had always had a thing about fresh brush and Blaine had happily obliged. As Blaine turned the little purple toothbrush over in his hand his head throbbed painfully. Kurt was everywhere here. Was everywhere in his classes and the halls and even his room. Nowhere he went was free of his own torment.
"Dude, there you are! Finn, he is in here!"
"Oh, great!" Finn's voice shouted, echoing through the lockers and over to Blaine.
Sam appeared at Blaine's side a moment later, looking relieved and flushed. As thought transfixed, Blaine kept his eyes locked on the towel hanging up in the back of his locker and said nothing. He didn't trust himself to say anything worthwhile. Anything that came out of his mouth right now would either hurt himself ,or them, and Blaine didn't want that.
Finn's enormous hand dropped down onto Blaine's shoulder as the two boys surrounded him.
"We were kinda worried after you ran off earlier," Sam told him. "Finn said your audition was, um, rough."
"I've never sounded worse," Blaine admitted honestly, pulling his towel from its hook and draping it over his shoulder. "You guys don't have to worry. Really. I'm f– "
"Bull, man," Sam snapped, actually sounding angry. Blaine flinched at the tone and closed his locker softly. "Look, I dunno what exactly happened with you and Kurt, but you can't keep beating yourself up like this, bro."
"Sam, just leave it– "
"Kurt wouldn't want you to do this to yourself, man," Finn said quietly, looking sad.
"Actually, I really think he would after what I did," Blaine argued, stepping over the bench and heading towards the showers.
"Right now he might, but he loves you," Finn continued, sounding determined as he followed after Blaine. "You made a huge mistake, and yeah, there's nothing you can do to take it back or change it, but if you two are gonna get past this– "
"No," Blaine said firmly, "we aren't. He's going to hate me for the rest of his life and I'm going to hate myself. " He paused next to one of the shower stalls, head bowed as the other exchanged a look. "Breaking his heart is one thing, but I broke his trust, and that's even worse. We had that from the day we met. Now all of his memories of his first love are going to be tarnished by what I've done. Besides," he added, "we can't work anything out if he won't talk to me."
"Guys, I appreciate the concern, but it's not going to change any of this," Blaine told them, twisting the shower knob.
"God," Sam said, sounding annoyed. "I thought we were cool, man. We just want to help, but I guess that's out of the question since you won't even do that for yourself."
Blaine paused half way through unbuttoning his shirt, listening to Sam drag Finn out of the locker room. As the distant door slammed closed, Blaine dropped his forehead onto the short wall dividing the shower stalls and focused on breathing.
Sam didn't seem to realize how much truth his words held, but Blaine did. He'd been thinking it for weeks now, ever since Kurt had left, really. He didn't do anything for himself, hadn't since he'd transferred to Dalton. For the Warblers, Blaine had been who they'd needed, and then he'd been what Kurt needed. He'd stupidly dedicated his entire life to the boy he'd fallen in love with, and while Kurt had grown and matured at his side, he'd remained stationary – unchanged. One second they'd been hand and hand in the halls of Dalton and the next Blaine's feet were out of sync, he was tripping and stumbling to keep a hold onto Kurt and secure himself at the other boy's side like an anchor.
Kurt hadn't needed that anchor for a long time now, and that chain had snapped as soon as the plane had taken off for New York. The boy Blaine had fallen in love with a dozen times over was moving on within himself, and Blaine hadn't known how to keep up. So he'd stayed the same and left himself at the bottom of the ocean with the chain once tethered to Kurt sinking down around him.
Sam was right. He didn't know how to help himself, didn't even know how to make himself happy without Kurt there to be happy, too.
Rachel was worried about him. Kurt didn't need her to say anything about him or Lima or love to know it. She was entirely too obvious as she coddled him and essentially drove him nuts after their guests had left. But she was good for some things, like holding him when he woke up crying in the middle of the night and making cakes at random hours to keep him fed.
His thighs would probably never again fit all of his favorite tight pants, but Kurt honestly didn't care. He couldn't wrap his mind around what had happened between himself and... Blaine only a few weeks ago. It seemed unreal except for the throbbing heartache that was always clawing at his throat and eyes.
Had he really been so blinded by his own love that he hadn't seen who Blaine was? But even as he thought it for the hundredth time, Kurt knew it held no truth. Blaine, the kind, sweet boy he'd fallen in love with, wouldn't do something like this with ill intent. Even still, Kurt had moments, hours, where he hated Blaine. Hated everything they'd shared and meant to each other, because somehow it had all amounted to this nightmare he couldn't shake himself out of. He hated even more the moments when he started to blame himself for any of it, because if he was somehow at fault for Blaine's decision to cheat then maybe he could find a way out of this.
But he wasn't. This was on Blaine and there was nothing Kurt could do about it but cry.
As Halloween approached, Rachel started pressing him more than coddling him. Some days Kurt was barely aware of it, but other times she was sharp and direct in a way he couldn't ignore.
"Kurt, you can't keep wallowing like this," she snapped one evening as a thunderstorm rattled the fire escape outside of their kitchen. "Call him. Then go on a date with this guy in my– "
"Really?" Kurt said in disbelief. "You think I can just– after everything he's meant to me– that I'll just– "
"No, but you can't get past this by dwelling on it," Rachel warned him. "Look at me and Brody! We're happy together, and yeah I miss Finn because I've loved him in a way I've never loved anybody else, but... that doesn't mean you can't let yourself experience life and whatever else it has to offer, Kurt."
On the little coffee table they'd taken to use as their dining table, Kurt's phone lit up and began to vibrate across the wood. Even before he looked at the screen, Kurt knew the text message was from Blaine. Every day he sent at least a handful of apologies or pleas for Kurt to talk to him, and despite feeling rather childish for it, Kurt ignored every single one.
"See?" Rachel insisted. "He wants to talk to you, Kurt. Let him, so you can both get closure and move on from this."
I don't want to move on from him.
"It's not that simple," Kurt told her quietly, staring at his mostly full plate of spaghetti. His appetite for anything except cake seemed to have departed with Blaine two weeks ago. "I can't even comprehend what he's done. I trusted him with all of me, Rachel. How do I just shut that off?"
"By confronting this and him," Rachel persisted. "He's your best friend, Kurt. I know I love to claim the title, but there's parts of yourself you've shared with him that I'll never see or understand like he does. If nothing else give him a chance to explain or at least officially end it. Just... don't keep ignoring all of this."
Even the part of Kurt that hated Blaine for what he'd done knew there was truth in her words, but he still didn't take the advice. It was too hard to fathom talking to Blaine right now, and Kurt knew he'd be too furious to even demand a full explanation of what had happened with Blaine and this guy. It was nightmares of that, where he'd touched Blaine, how he'd made him feel and moan, that woke Kurt up at night. He wondered if Blaine had thought about him while it happened, and if he had if he'd laughed at the thought of his heartbreak.
There'd certainly been no laughing at Battery Park. If anything Blaine had seemed shattered from the moment he'd arrived.
I needed you. I needed you and you weren't there.
And despite the physical cheating Blaine had committed, Kurt knew those words hadn't been about Blaine needing sex. Right now Kurt just couldn't bear to admit that despite his own assures he'd done exactly what he'd said he wouldn't. He'd left Blaine behind, physically, mentally, emotionally, knocking Blaine off the balance bend he'd been wobbling on for so long. He didn't blame himself for Blaine's decision – Blaine could have just as easily hopped a plane instead of doing whatever, wherever with that guy – but he was starting to realize part of the blame for how Blaine had felt was with him, even if he couldn't admit it.
By the week of Halloween, Kurt had made the decision to stop feeling sad and sorry for himself. He was partially taking Rachel's advice, even if he still refused to acknowledge any of Blaine's text messages. His office was holding their big annual Halloween party that week, and while finding a costume was simple enough, Kurt was at a loss for a date.
Rachel point blank refused to accompany him.
No, absolutely not," Rachel said flatly when he told her he wanted her to go with him. "You need to go out and have fun and meet other guys, Kurt– "
"That's not what I need right now– "
"No, but you need to change your Facebook relationship status, don't you?" Rachel huffed and Kurt wilted at her words.
He didn't think about them anymore. If he pushed it under their shabby little rug then he couldn't actually see it, even if there was still a bulky outfit lingering in his sight. Everything about Blaine still lingered in his skin, and he knew nothing would wash it out.
"Come here," Rachel murmured, tugging him down into her little arms and hugging him against her. Kurt allowed it, like he had that first week, and tried to relax. She was his best friend, and while her hugs were comforting, it wasn't right. Not in the way he needed now. It wasn't strong and firm like Blaine's grip. There was no masculine, warm, cinnamon-like scent to engulf him and take the tension out of his body.
"Look, I love Blaine to bits," Rachel said truthfully. "So do you, despite everything that's happened. I'd almost be disappointed if you could stop loving him that quickly. But you have got to move on. You've got to live your life, and if you two are soul mates like I think you are, then you'll find a way back to each other. But right now, you've got to let this go."
Kurt wiped his nose roughly as she attempted to rock him, but instead toppled over from his weight. They landed on the hardwood in a heap, and for the first time since the beginning of October, Kurt laughed. Eyes crinkled up, but still tearful as he sat back up.
Rachel beamed at the happy sound and kissed his cheek. "See? It's not so hard," she told him with certainty.
"I don't think I'm ready yet," he said weakly, pulling his knees up against his chest and resting his chin on them. "I can't just let go without saying goodbye, and I hate him too much to even talk to him right now."
"You'll never really be ready until you start moving on," Rachel decided. "Because then all of your time will be spent thinking about him, and hating him and what happened, and pining for before and you'll never get past this without a push."
Kurt was silent as he mulled her words over. In some ways he knew she was right. If he waited until his heart was ready to move on to dating other men, he'd be waiting forever. His love for Blaine was never going to disappear, and he knew that.
"Maybe you'll even meet a cute guy, Kurt," Rachel insisted, trying to sound as hopeful as she looked. Kurt saw right through it, though, knowing she wanted him and Blaine to talk and start to mend. Right now, Kurt didn't think he could ever speak to Blaine again without yelling at him through his tears.
He won't be the cutest.
"Maybe... " Kurt sulked, picking up his fork and twirling it through his spaghetti. "Chase keeps dropping hints about the party since he doesn't have a date either."
"Then go with him," Rachel demanded. "He already knows you're in a tough spot, so he shouldn't push you for anything."
"He is a nice guy," Kurt admitted. He wasn't Kurt's type, though. Too well informed on Kurt's own interests that there was never any moments where he had to sit him down and explain an outfit, or a design's cut, or why Blaine should wear bow ties to make his shoulders look broader.
Kurt shook his head roughly at the thought, and tried to offer Rachel a smile. It faltered before his lips even started moving, and he stared down at his plate, and the phone vibrating with another text message from Blaine.
Whether or not he loved Blaine wasn't the problem right now. His heart was deflated and torn from the inside out, but Blaine's love for him had stayed nestled in its same, favorite spot. This wasn't going away anytime soon, but for just a little while longer Kurt was going to focus on himself and ignore it.