2nd Annual Valentine's Night of Song Gala
Pavarotti Music Foundation
Special guest appearance by Grammy award recipient,
Founder & CEO of Pavarotti Music Foundation
Tickets $2500 with all proceeds to the Pavarotti Music Foundation
Saturday February 14, 2018
Rainbow Room 6:30 PM
"Hmphh. So, there it is…in black and white. I, Kurt Hummel, am attending a Gala, hosted by none other than my former boyfriend and now extremely successful musician, Blaine Anderson, for the very Foundation that we dreamed up together. In who's universe does this shit really happen?" he pondered, turning the ticket over and over in his hand – like it might be a magic 8 ball and give him an answer. "I must have done some funky shit in another lifetime for this to be my karma payback" nodding his head to the ticket. Kurt was in his NYC neighborhood coffee shop waiting for Rachel to meet him. She was late. She was late and he was left with too much time to dwell on his circumstance, and quite frankly was starting to wig out at the whole turn of events.
It started earlier that day when he was called in to the principal's office of the school where he worked.
"Kurt! Thanks for coming in – please take a seat" the principal indicated to the spare chair with a sweep of his hand as he closed the door to his office.
"Sure, Mr Carmichael. What can I do for you" Kurt sat cross legged in the chair with his hands neatly folded in his lap looking quizzically at the middle-aged administrator.
"Kurt – I have a favor to ask you"
"Okayyyy?…" Kurt drawing the word out.
"I have a complimentary ticket to attend the Pavarotti Music Foundation Gala that's being held this Saturday night. I thought I'd be going, but as it turns out, I can't and so I thought you'd be the perfect substitute since its really up your alley anyways with the counseling department and all" he stated as he fumbled through the papers on his desk looking for the ticket. "I know its late notice but I'm really hoping you are free and would like to go in my place."
Kurt sat still in his chair trying to take all the information in. The color drained from his face as he realized what was being asked of him.
"Excuse me – you want me to attend the fundraiser for the Pavarotti Music Foundation? The Foundation that Blaine Anderson started up and runs?" Kurt asked calmly, trying to control the quivering in his voice.
"Yes! Please Kurt?" Carmichael repeated, looking back up at Kurt with a desperate look on his face. "As you know, because you are attending, we are hosting the information meeting that same day with some of the representatives of the Foundation" he pointed out "and so, of course, we need also to be in attendance at the actual fundraiser. It's quite the event Kurt - it's a gala! It will be themed for Valentine's Day. You should be thrilled at the opportunity. You'll be hob-knobbing with celebrities and maybe you'll even get the chance to meet Blaine Anderson himself!" he carried on still looking for the ticket. 'Aha!" he exclaimed as he pulled the lone ticket out of his desk drawer. "It's a plus 1 so you can take someone along with you". "I've already RSVP'd as myself, so you'll just need to be Douglas Carmichael for the evening" he joked holding the ticket out to him.
Kurt leaned over and plucked the ticket from his hand, and put it in the breast pocket of his jacket. Not believing what he was about to agree to, he took a deep breath and confirmed "Sure Mr. Carmichael. I'm happy to take your place" and added "and I KNOW my roommate, Rachel, will be thrilled with the opportunity to "network" he airquoted with a slight grin as he got up to leave. "After all Rachel is nothing if not all about opportunities" he thought as he left the office and walked down the hall to his own office where he sat and stewed for the rest of the day.
And, now, here he was. Ticket in hand, waiting to share the news with said Miss Opportunity. Where the hell is she?
His thoughts were broken when a hand came from behind and grabbed his shoulder, jarring him.
"Kurt – I'm sorry I'm late. Were you waiting long? Oh my god, I need some caffeine pronto!" Rachel crashed down in the chair across from him dropping her purse on the table with a thud looking at him like her question was not rhetoric.
"No… yeah… well, whatever.. I've been here a while" he muttered, "but its ok. Been waiting to fill you in on some big news though…" he quipped with a grin – waving the ticket he had in his hand in an effort to taunt his best friend. It worked.
"Oh… really…" Rachel draws out…. "And what exactly is this big news and what the hell are you waving around at me?" maneuvering over the table in an attempt to stop his hand and grab the ticket.
"Well, it would seem that a certain someone…. Blaine Anderson…." he added with one hand to the side of his mouth, " is going to be playing at his Gala on Saturday night and LOOK," now speaking rapidly in a fever pitched high voice "we've got the golden ticket" waving it around madly like a person possessed.
Rachel was finally successful in grabbing it out of Kurt's hand and stood reading it for herself. A couple of times over apparently to make sure her eyes weren't deceiving her. Wide-eyed, she opened and closed her mouth twice in an attempt to say something. He had no idea that was all it took to shut her up for a few minutes. Life altering invitations – who knew? He had found the recipe for silence. "Must keep that intel close for future use" he noted to himself.
Finally finding her voice "Blaine… BLAINE ANDERSON is going to be here in New York performing for his Foundation?" crashing back in her chair.
Arms crossed, with ticket still in her hand, she stared out the window for a minute. Suddenly she looked back up at Kurt, still wide-eyed and nodding, "Wow – he really made it didn't he? I don't think it really hit me until now Kurt." She reached out and laid her hand over his said more softly "he did it – he's a star." Looking out the window again she added. "I guess neither of us should be surprised – he was always so talented. It's just…. you know?" Again she looked back at Kurt, her head turned to the side, looking for reinforcement..
Again… rhetoric? He didn't know, so he answered, annoyed that his voice was a little higher than normal.
"Well of course he made it"…he said matter of fact with an indignant shrug. "He was born to be a "popstar" he noted with air quotes. "That was always his mojo wasn't it? Anyone that knew him could see that." Kurt looked down at his hands to avoid further eye contact with his best friend and noticed that he had been making circles around his palm with his fingers. It reminded him of how Blaine used to make circles in his palm with his thumbs when they held hands and he quickly pulled his hands down to his lap. "Honestly Rachel" he admitted with a softer tone, "even with all the shit that went down between us, and believe me, it was a truckload" he emphasized with a frown, "I've always known 100% that this would be Blaine's destiny and one that he deserves. He's so fucking talented. There was no way this wasn't going to happen. It was just a matter of time" Kurt confided.
"So, are you going to go?" Rachel asked him after a few moments of silence.
"Well, yeah… So this is the story" Kurt explained "My principal can't make it and so he asked, no, informed me that I am going in his place" He followed that with "And no, he has NO idea of my history with Blaine – this is pure fucking fluke." And then followed that with 'And you, Rachel Berry are coming with me as my plus one." pointing at her before folding his arms over his chest.
"Fluke or Fate?" she challenged him, smiling with a wiggle of her eyebrows.
"Rachel… " Kurt warned with a slight growl to his voice
"What? Kurt – you have to admit. This is pretty freaky. I mean – what are the chances?" holding out her arms out in an exaggerated manner. "You have to go and see him and talk to him. It's been years" she said leaning forward so that her head was right over the table eying him down like it was the biggest secret in the world and no-one else could hear. "Don't you think its time to maybe sort this all out once and for all? I mean, maybe time does heal all wounds" she shrugged. "Wouldn't you like to at least find out and maybe even congratulate him? He MADE IT Kurt!" she exclaimed, leaning back up and throwing her hands up for dramatic effect. "He deserves that from us – from you… don't you think?" She left it at that, leaning back into her chair, knowing that her friend had to really think this through before committing to any answer. "And I get to go too" she added in her singsong voice with little hand claps.
"Come on" she said pulling his hand – "I know you want to buy me an almond milk latte – and there's an amazing white chocolate-raspberry scone that has our name on it" she declared as she got up to go place their order with the barista.
Kurt sat still twirling the ticket between his fingers – deep in thought. Would he have an opportunity to speak to Blaine at the Gala? Would Blaine even want to see him? Would he even care after all these years? From Kurt's viewpoint, it certainly appeared that Blaine had moved on quite nicely, enjoying a multitude of companions, if you could believe all the stories that were written about him. And, well, let's face it – pictures don't lie, and there were plenty of those to go around too. Personally he wouldn't know what the truth was behind the façade of Blaine's publicity because they have never spoken another word to each other after "that day". The day where the life he knew ended and the life he has now began.
"KURT"… - the yell jolted him out of his thoughts and back to reality. "coffee…. now..!"
After Kurt and Blaine broke up, Blaine abandoned his plans of going to New York. They were really Kurt's plans from the get-go, and while he would have happily followed Kurt anywhere, once the relationship was over he decided to go to the other side of the country and began college at UCLA in Los Angeles, majoring in business. He had never given up on the idea of a music career however and through hard work, talent and a bit of luck, he made the right connections. He played when and where he could, uploaded performances onto YouTube, and eventually wrote and recorded a couple of singles that went straight to the top of the Billboard charts. From there he really never looked back. He dropped out of college a few credits shy of his degree. He released a full LP that year and won the Grammy for Best New Artist in 2017. His hit single, "I'll Never Say Goodbye" went platinum the same year.
Through all this, Blaine never felt the need to hide his sexuality, as other entertainers had. It had taken him so long to be comfortable with whom he was, he just didn't see the sense in closeting himself. It was a calculated risk, but he knew if he didn't come clean right from the start, it would be a slippery slope. The fact that he was a gorgeous open gay man seemed to make the fangirls ship him even more, if that was possible. It certainly didn't detract him from fame; quite the opposite. He attracted all genders – it was always something he managed to do. Never were truer words spoken that day when Kurt described him as the alpha gay.
The industry, however, jaded him, and he slowly fell into the stereotypical pattern of drinking and partying too much. And he acquired quite the reputation along the way. Pictures and stories ran constantly in the national rags, showing him with a new boy toy at every event. The men were always college age and impeccably dressed. He had a type.
The truth of the matter was that Blaine was lonely. Success did not guarantee happiness. And the more success he experienced professionally, the lonelier he became. There was an invisible box around him that others couldn't see, but from which he couldn't escape. And so he lived in that box as best he could. He created the Pavarotti Music Foundation as an homage to love – from a vision that Kurt and him had created together, naming it after their beloved warbler from Dalton Academy. The Foundation was set up to offer opportunities for children to participate in various music programs. It gave out grants and scholarships for under-privileged children and under-funded public schools, and provided music therapy to children that were going through rough times. It also housed safe havens for LGBT kids to explore their musicality throughout the country. It started out as a grass roots effort but soon attracted the endorsement of other celebrities and musicians and ended up being one of the most successful fine arts foundations in America.
The Valentine's Night of Song Gala was something the Foundation started up last year, and was so successful that they decided to make it an annual event, hosting it in a different city each year. The inaugural had been held in Los Angeles and raised $200,000 to the cause. This year, in New York City, they hoped to match or beat that number.
Blaine jetted in to NYC early on the Friday with David, his manager, and had received a couple of party invitations ahead of time that his personal assistant had replied affirmative to; parties where he proceeded to have too many shots of vodka and lots of cute boys to make out with; the evening ending in a haze of alcohol and sex, with the morning after coming in far too quickly.
Blaine rolled over on to his stomach pulling a pillow over his head to block out the sunlight that was filtering through the windows. Smacking his lips together his first thought was that his mouth felt like sandpaper. Then the throbbing in his head took the spotlight. There was a party, he remembered. A pretty boy. Flashes of bodies wrapped together, tongues fighting for dominance, and teeth gnashing together strobes through his brain causing more of a ruckus in his head than he thought humanly possible.
The slight groan beside him is what brought him fully awake, realizing that he was not alone.
"Why did they always stay the night?" he asked himself. He was really going to have to get better at NOT falling asleep as soon as he came so he could make sure they left.
He pulled the pillow up a bit to peak out and came eye to eye with a sea of blue.
"Why did they always have blue eyes? Blue eyes – chestnut brown hair and what looked to be a lean build if bare shoulders and arms were any bearing to the rest of what lay under the covers.
"Good morning" Pretty Boy greeted him with a smile.
"Fuck, what was his name? Daniel? Dylan? Something with a D… OK Anderson – time to charm him out of your room…"
"Morning" Blaine answered with a half smile. He tossed the pillow aside and rolled on to his back to stretch out, flexing his muscles – testing for soreness. None. "Good "he thought "I topped." It always freaked him out when he couldn't remember having sex and would panic at the thought of bottoming without recollection. He definitely did not bottom with hookups. He had only bottomed with one person. It was something that he consciously decided he would not do unless he was in a committed relationship. And since that had never happened since Ohio, he had never bottomed again.
And yet, without memory confirming the action, he was always afraid that there would be one day he would get careless and be convinced to do otherwise.
"Where the fuck are the condoms though" he thought as his slightly panicked eyes scanned the room. Empty liquor bottles – half drank drinks sitting on night-table. Bottle of lube and…. aha… empty condom foils. Two…. Lifting his brows up, "Well, it was a twofer night" he noted smugly. "Well done" congratulating himself with a virtual pat on the back. "
Looking back at his bed guest he realized that Blue Eyes seemed a little nervous and maybe awkward waiting for some type of confirmation. He reached over lightly trailing his hand along the man's arm.
" Last night was really great…." Ddd..…?
Fuck! Fuck! Fuck!
"Dustin"…. Pretty Boy offered up realizing that Blaine had forgotten. My name is Dustin" he said with a trace of disappointment in his voice. "Look I would have left after we fucked" he shrugged, leaning up on his elbow. "But you insisted I stay and cuddle, and then I guess we both fell asleep."
"Damn, he's really cute" thought Blaine.
"Dustin…I'm sorry – heads a bit foggy this morning" he admitted ruefully. "Thank you for everything" he said as he reached out to the chestnut hair boy, sweeping a lock of hair off his forehead, leaning over and kissing him softly. With a smile on his face, he kissed him again and then rolled away to get up out of bed, once again stretching him arms over his head and to the left and right making his way to the ensuite.
"I'm going to take a shower, but feel free to stay if you like." he offered as he gathered some towels. He stopped and turned "There should be some food in the kitchen if you're hungry. There's juice in the fridge. I'm sorry that I'm not able to spend more time with you but I have to get moving. Pretty full day ahead I'm afraid." He tried his best to look sincere and pulled the puppy dogs eyes for effect, just to clinch the deal.
"Oh – ok. Well I should get going myself. I have class in a couple of hours." Dustin replied, throwing off the rest of the blankets to get up.
"Damn, he's hot " Blaine noted eying him up and down a few times, his dick starting to twitch. "not now Anderson, get your shit together and in the shower before you bring it all down" he berated himself, heading into the bathroom and stepping into the shower stall before he did something stupid like throw the boy back into bed and lick his body up one side and down the other. Fuck, his dick was really getting vested in the whole idea.
Dustin dressed himself quickly, went over to the bathroom door intending to say goodbye. But he could hear Blaine singing quietly in the shower and so he left without further words. This man was not asking for his number – he had that figured out. "But shit man Blaine Anderson fucked me last night …. twice…" he fist pumped the air with a big grin on his face.. Wait until his friends heard about this. He didn't even care that he would never see him again. He came, he conquered and it was fucking awesome.
Blaine hears the front door shut and thanks Buddha that the boy left. He has got to get his shit together and stop hooking up with every college aged blue –eyed chestnut haired boy he meets. This was getting ridiculous and out of hand. A shrink would have a field day with him. He sighed at the revelation as he let the hot water wash away all traces of the evening.
"Blaine – are you here" David shouted from the front door as he let himself in to the hotel suite. "Yo! Blaine! – are you here?" he repeated.
"Only if you swear to never say "Yo Blaine" again in my presence" Blaine stated as he walked out of the bedroom towel drying his hair. Low slung Dalton sweats hung on his hips, accompanied by a threadbare tattered matching Dalton tshirt.
"Always the prep boy, aren't you?" David teased with a chuckle.
"Yup that's me – dapper to the fucking core" he replied right back with a smile as he made his way to the kitchenette. He needed coffee and he needed it now. The throbbing in his head had not let up.
"Please tell me you brought coffee with you" he called out to David as he looked in distain at the instant coffee packets that were placed by the kettle. Nothing could be worse, except for the powdered milk that was alongside it. He opened a bottle of water and used it to chug down some Advil, hoping the drums in his head would subside.
"No, sorry man I didn't, but call room service and have them send up a carafe" David suggested as he followed into the kitchen space. "You're Blaine Anderson for fuck sakes- let them swoon over you – you know you want it!" He slapped him on the back with a chuckle.
"Yeah – how about YOU call it in and I'll go finish dressing so we can get the hell out of here and go to this Foundation meeting before I go to the sound check for tonight's performance"
"Yeah, sure man – no problem" as he goes to pick up the phone. "So… what was his name?" he called out to Blaine who had made his way back to the bathroom to fix his hair. He opted not to shave, preferring the one day growth for now.
"What was whose name?" Blaine questioned back.
"Whoever was here with you last night…and, by the looks of it, this morning? What was his name? – do you even remember?" David teased. "The Kurt wannabe" he said to himself.
"Of course I fucking remember" he responded as he came back out of the bathroom towards David "It was Dustin." But then confessed, "Ok, well to be totally honest, no… I didn't remember his name, but he kindly offered it up to me. And David", Blaine got serious, bringing out the puppy dog eyes again, but this time for real, "I really really have to stop picking up guys that remind me of Him. Ok? Can you at least help me out on that front?" Standing with one hand on his hip and carding his hand through his hair, his eyes shifting down to the floor, "It fucking hurts too much the next day."
"Hey man I tried! You were all over that and there is no talking to you when you're in that mood. Sorry, but what's the saying? If you can't take the heat, then get out of the kitchen?"
"Yeah – well fuck you!" Blaine bantered, with an ease that only comes with years of friendship. "I was never good at cooking and you're supposed to be looking out for me, my friend. Some Manager you turned out to be!"
"Yeah? Well I am the some Manager that got you where you are today so get that tight ass of yours into some proper clothes and let's get a move on .The paps are outside looking for a pretty picture. The hell with room service" he decided, putting the phone back down on the cradle. "We'll pick up some Starbucks on the way over. Better yet – let's go to the diner down the street and grab some breakfast." Move it Anderson!"
"OK OK" Blaine concedes, sticking his tongue out while wiggling his ass as he sauntered back in to the bedroom to get dressed. 15 minutes later he emerged in skinny jeans and a white t-shirt with black converse on his feet. Hair mussed with a bit of product; just enough to tame the curls without beating them into submission, and deciding to give his eyes a rest from contact lens, he put on his black framed glasses … there - classic hipster look. Look the part – feel the part. Throwing on his leather jacket, he grabbed his phone, wallet and room key, and met David at the door. "Come on – let's go. I'm starving and in deep need of coffee" he declared walking through the open door. His friend followed with a dramatic roll of the eyes that no-one saw, but felt right regardless.
Digging in to his eggs and smearing the yolk around with his toast, Blaine questioned "Where exactly are we going for the Foundation meeting and why are we having a meeting in New York anyways?" stuffing the egg laden toast in his mouth looking expectantly at David for an answer as he chews.
David sighed and sipped his coffee. "First ...don't talk and eat at the same time. Remember Dalton manners young man" he teased. At which Blaine pretended to hit the table with a make belief gavel and smiled a big goofy egg smile.
"Second, we're meeting at one of the local high schools in Brooklyn. The district is interested and is looking at how they can participate and want to learn more about the programs in general. Wes is going to meet us there and go over all the legal issues. Since you're in town for the Gala we thought it would be fun for you to tag along, and talk about how it all began, so to speak. A little impromptu performance you might call it." "Just charm them ok?" Blaine nodded to that as he continued eating.
Wes was the tri to their trio. Also a Dalton alumni, he was now 3rd year law school at Columbia, having completed his undergrad at Harvard, and was helping them out with the legal aspects of running a foundation, which in all honesty was way above what Blaine and even David were capable of. Blaine had no idea how successful it would become. It was a win-win situation for Blaine, David and Wes. Wes was also representing him with his recording contracts and would formally become his lawyer as soon as his degree was complete.
Heeding David's advice, Blaine ate the rest of his breakfast in silence. Once he was finished he laid the cutlery on the plate, wiped his mouth with his napkin and finished the water that was left in his glass. Moving on to his coffee, he continued with the conversation.
"So we are heading over to Brooklyn and meeting some administrators in a high school to convince them to join the program? Correct?" Eyebrows raised, he looked at David for confirmation.
"Yes, pretty much." David conferred. "Only I don't know if its administrators or teachers to be honest. I think there might be some teachers there that are involved in Glee or whatever music programs they are currently running. But yeah, that's the gist of it" he said, pulling out his phone which was vibrating in his pocket. Reading a text that came through, he said "Ok text from Wes – he's on his way over there now. So we should pay up and head out. Finish your coffee Lover boy. I've got the car waiting by the curb".
"Okay then" Blaine muttered into his coffee cup, drinking down the last dregs. "No time like the present. Let's get this show on the road".
David checked the bill and threw some money down on it, making sure he left a decent tip. And they left to get into the town car for Brooklyn.