A/N: So, I kinda disappeared from here, and I'd like to apologize for that. I should be updating Somebody Told Me later on this week, but here's a short chapter of a winter series that I hope to have updated every day of break until it's finished. Hope you guys enjoy! Also, I'm sorry if Brody isn't captured the way you may expect. I haven't read many fics with him in them, so I'm kinda guessing at his character.
I walked through the door with you. The air was cold, but something 'bout it felt like home, somehow.
Life is a funny thing. It passes in seconds, minutes, hours, days, years, but you can't remember everything. You live through every second, minute, hour, day, and year, and, in the moment, those seconds seem so important, but when you look back a year later, they have already dissolved into the darkest corners of your memory in order to make room for more.
Obviously, it's impossible to remember every moment, but sometimes it's interesting to think about why our minds choose to keep certain memories while discarding others. Of course, it would be very useful to remember the name of the song you were listening to on the radio that has been stuck in your head for the last two days, but instead you can only recall the color of the scarf the woman sitting next to you on the train was wearing.
For Kurt Hummel, the memories of that winter were already beginning to dissolve, but there were still parts that he could recall easily—moments so clear that he could replay them in his mind and feel like he was back in the moment. That's just the effect that Brody Weston had on him.
It started just after Thanksgiving. Rachel was going home for her winter break, but Kurt had to stay in the city for work—that, and he couldn't afford the disturbingly high flight rates that always accompanied the approaching holidays.
It wasn't that big of a deal for Kurt. He wasn't really in the mood to go home and be reminded of everything bad that happened back there. Everything in his room would remind him of Blaine. Blaine and all the promises and love that came with him for so long. Blaine and all the pain and loss that came with remembering that night in Battery Park when Kurt truly lost him. Of course, he missed his dad and Finn and Carole, but they promised to Skype on Christmas, so he would still see them—if only on a computer screen.
The first few days were uneventful to say the least. Kurt was starting to fear that he would fall into a pattern of workeatsleep for the entire time Rachel was gone. It was weird to think that she—one of the craziest people he knew—was the one person that kept him sane, but it was true. Her frantic babbling about Brody and Cassie and Glass Menagerie were enough to make Kurt forget—if only for a moment—about his own problems. It was enough to make the hurt subside.
On the third day, Kurt was sitting in the living room of his small apartment when he heard a loud knock on the door. He almost fell off the couch he had been sprawled out on. The noise was loud and he had been drifting off to sleep.
Slowly, he rolled off the couch, taking a moment to catch his footing a rub the grogginess from his eyes before padding to the source of the imposing noise. Cracking the door open slightly, Kurt was surprised to see who was standing on the other side.
"Brody?" Kurt asked, voice cracking slightly from sleep.
The muscular boy on the other side of the door grinned, running a hand through his hair. "Hey, Kurt."
"Wha—" Kurt cleared his throat, avoiding a second odd noise from escaping his throat. "What are you doing here?"
"Rachel texted me. She needed me to pick up an assignment she forgot to turn in before she left for break."
"Oh." It was silly, but for a second Kurt had almost expected the boy to say he was here to see him. Of course he was only here because of Rachel. They were practically attached at the hip—even if Rachel insisted that they were still just friends. Yeah, that's what everyone said.
"She said it should be on her desk. Can I just come in and grab it really quick? I won't be more than a minute."
Kurt nodded, opening the door wider so Brody could get inside. "That girl. Hell would freeze over before she forgot a single note to any song from Spring Awakening, but ask her to remember an assignment and she'll forget within two minutes."
Brody laughed. It was a nice laugh, and it rippled through the air making Kurt feel warm and comfortable even though the apartment was uncharacteristically cold. As he laughed, he threw his head back, exposing the muscular tendons in his neck, causing Kurt's mind to wonder what response he would have to someone kissing him there with just the right amount of pressure. Blaine always loved when Kurt did that. Wait. Hold on. Did he really just think about kissing Brody?
Kurt shook the thought from his mind just in time to catch the end of whatever Brody had just said. "—alone for Christmas?"
Kurt nodded slowly, assuming Brody had been talking about him. "Yeah. I have work to do at Vogue, and Isabelle is freaking out about the holiday themes. Plus, plane tickets are ridiculous right now."
Brody nodded knowingly. "Aren't you gonna miss your family, though?"
"They're gonna Skype on Christmas morning, so we can open presents together, but, yeah, I'm gonna miss them—especially my dad. This is the first year we won't be together during the holidays."
"Skype isn't the same. No one should be alone on Christmas, Kurt."
"Yes, but life goes on," Kurt sighed. "Did you find the assignment?"
Brody pulled a folder out of the stack of papers covering Rachel's desk, nodding as he flipped through it. "Yeah, I think this is it."
Kurt nodded, almost sadly. He was starting to hope that it would take longer to find the paper just so he could have someone to talk to for a while longer. He always liked Brody. He was nice, and he never looked at Kurt like he was different from anyone else. He never made a big deal when he caught Kurt staring at him for a moment too long—and who could blame him? Brody was gorgeous. Plus, he was talented. Beyond talented, actually. He had an amazing voice and he made dancing look less effortless than Mike Chang even could.
"Alright, well I guess I'll see you around," Kurt said with a slight smile. He didn't want to be sad, but he hated being alone just as much as the next person.
"Yeah," Brody agreed with a smile. He made his way toward the door, turning only when he had his hand on the knob. "Hey, Kurt?"
"Yeah?" Kurt looked up in surprise, not expecting anything further to be said.
"What are you doing tonight?"
A blush was starting to make its way up his cheeks, and Kurt was fighting to keep eye contact. "Um, nothing really. I was just gonna call Rachel for an update on the insanity back home, then go to sleep. Why?"
Brody smiled softly. "Well, if you want to reschedule that, I was just gonna order some pizza or something—nothing fabulous like you're probably used to—but I was thinking. No one should be alone around Christmas. And I don't really have a lot of friends in town either, but maybe we could be each other's company."
Now Kurt was positive that the blush was covering his entire face. After all, it's not every day that an attractive boy that knew he was gay was asking him to "just hang out." He nodded a bit too quickly and smiled a bit too eagerly. "I'll just grab my coat. The insanity of Lima can wait until tomorrow."
Brody grinned, leaning against the door frame as he waited for Kurt to pull on his pea coat and signature boots. Chuckling when the scarf the smaller boy was winding around his neck got stuck on his nose.
When Kurt finished, they left the apartment together and hailed a cab to Brody's apartment in the inner city. Kurt offered to pay the fare, but Brody brushed it off, handing the cab driver a wad of cash before leading Kurt up to his apartment.
The first thought Kurt had upon entering the apartment was "Wow." The wide windows that covered an entire side of the apartment looked out over the entire city, and with the snow and lights that were a signature of a winter in New York, Kurt couldn't think of a view any more perfect.
Brody laughed at the awestruck look on Kurt's face. "It's not much, but it's home."
"No much?" Kurt was still struggling to force his jaw to shut. "Are you kidding me?"
"Well, I guess it's much compared to Bushwick," Brody said with a smirk.
"You think?" Kurt practically squeaked as he punched Brody teasingly—not expecting the rock-hard abs that met his hand, making him curl back quickly in surprise.
Brody's smirk grew at the look of surprise of Kurt's face as he moved away. "Yeah, I work out a bit."
Kurt's eyes shifted nervously. He didn't know how to respond to that. Brody wasn't gay, and he didn't want to say something that would make him feel uncomfortable. Instead, he hastily opted to change the subject. "So… how long have you lived in New York?"
There was a knowing look in the stronger man's eyes as he responded, "I moved here when I was a freshman, but I grew up upstate. It's only about 3 hours driving, so I can visit home pretty much whenever I want."
"What's your family like?" Kurt asked, sitting down on the couch and beginning to unbutton his coat. Family was a safe subject—something he could talk about without that uncomfortable feeling coming back.
"They're really great. Growing up, I lived with my mom and siblings. They're all younger than me, so I try to go home and visit every once in a while. My dad divorced my mom about a year after my younger sister was born, and he lives in the city now, so I see him a lot, but I'm closer with my mom."
"What's your mom like?"
A tender smile teased at Brody's lips as he sat back in the couch thinking about how to respond. "She's beautiful—tall with blue-green eyes and long brown hair. She has a nice singing voice, and she's a co-writer for a couple different TV shows."
"She sounds nice," Kurt's voice trembled a bit as he thought about all the things that he never got the chance to know about his mom before she died.
"Hey, what's wrong?"
Kurt shook his head to calm himself, looking up to be surprised by how close Brody was to him—concern etched into his features. "N-nothing. I just—what you said—it reminded me of someone."
"Your mom?" Brody guessed, smiling when Kurt looked up in surprised. "Rachel told me she died when you were young. You must miss her."
Kurt nodded slowly, "I do. It's weird to think about how someone can be so important in your life, and then one day they're gone."
Brody brought a hand up to Kurt's face, using his thumb to wipe away a tear that was trickling down his cheek. He left his hand there, cupping Kurt's jaw as he looked into his eyes that shined bright as he fought off more tears. He was trying to figure out what color they were—an intense mixture of blue and green with little specks of gold.
Kurt was the first to look away—too aware of how close Brody was, too aware of the look in his eyes, too aware of the hand that was still on his face. "S-so," Kurt breathed, attempting to regain his voice.
The sound of Kurt's voice pulled Brody back to the present, pulling his hand away but not moving too far away. "Wanna order that pizza? I'm kinda starving all of a sudden."
"Sure," Kurt feigned a small smile. For a second he thought Brody was going to kiss him. That was probably the stupidest thing he'd thought so far. It was worse than the crush he had on Finn. At least he knew somewhere that that wasn't going anywhere. He never thought Finn would try to kiss him. Why was his mind jumping to conclusions like that? He pinched himself in an attempt to surface back in reality and sat back in the soft cushions as he listened to Brody talk with a pizza delivery person in the other room.
It was odd, but Kurt felt really at home in the large apartment, sitting on the plush couch overlooking the city. Maybe it was because this is the place that Kurt had envisioned himself living at for his entire life, or maybe it was because Brody was honestly one of the most accepting and understanding people he had ever met. Whatever it was, Kurt was soaking it in.
Even if Brody never intended on kissing him, this was much better than sitting at home and watching reruns of 90210—again.