Summary: It's the day that everyone dreads . . . Kurt Hummel's funeral, but there's more to it.
Today's somber weather reflected the mood of the people of Lima. The slight drizzle every few minutes, thunder cracking in the air with matching flashes of lightning, and the complete lack of wind at the place where everyone had gathered. These factors were quite unusual for the Lima Memorial Graveyard, but today was the opposite of normal. Lima had never have had a death like this, especially for one that no one expected would affect so many.
The people of Lima were mourning Kurt Hummel; the boy who had perished in a freak fire with only a few teeth to remain to identify him. It had happened in the night, in a surprising place as well. No one would have thought for Kurt Hummel to be checking out abandoned houses. The only ones that knew were Tina and Mercedes, to which they had been told that he was going to try and fix one up to give his hand in design a chance . . . but no part of him was given a chance before his body went up in flames.
The news of the house burning down and the lack of a certain pale boy in the town of Lima had quickly been connected; that along with Mercedes and Tina coming forward once finding out that the address of the crime scene had matched the one that Kurt had left for them. After searching through the ash and charred wood that was left of the house, Kurt's burnt bag had been found by a huge pile of swirling ash from the wind. Only a few teeth were left behind that gave the Coroner's lab enough to identify Kurt.
Burt Hummel was the first to find out, he having been a friend of the town coroner for years. Those teeth had belonged to his son and his son had burned alive in that fire. The old man had only had a flicker of denial in his body before he shut himself away from the world. With no body to bury, Burt had decided to let himself mourn the loss in privacy. Tina and Mercedes were the first people to see the man in three days since the news had broken out, everyone else unable to budge the front door by any means. The three had cried in one small hug for hours before silence had fallen upon them.
Each of them took their time to be in Kurt's room, wanting to have some alone time with what they could from what Kurt left behind. Mercedes has stood quietly as her eyes drifted around the room, unbelieving and distraught. Her moment lasted very little before she darted from the room and remained at Burt Hummel's side for days to come. Tina had stayed at the bottom of the staircase, her body in a fetal position as she cried her eyes out. Comfort went out the window because she didn't want to cause any disturbance to how Kurt had left the room. Burt had cried, his body a sobbing mess as he lay on Kurt's bed. He had hugged the pillows that Kurt left behind, the strung out clothes that were tossed on the bed were moved into Burt's arms. He had stayed there for many more hours before the soft voices of two angelic voices in the living room had become powerful enough to move him to do something for the only person on earth that he had loved.
Whenever Burt was upstairs, he was helped with one of the girls to call the right people, to plan this thing out and send Kurt away with the honor that that boy deserved. Everyone in the town was beyond happy to see something finally happen for the boy that thought he had no one, and the funeral was planned for the next day. Unanimous donations quickly came in, the funeral, casket, and everything involved quickly paid for by the people of Lima. Unlike in life when nobody did anything for Kurt, his death had help from everywhere.
Though nobody dare talk about it at school. Tina and Mercedes had been asked to deliver the news at school at Burt's request. Everyone knew what the assembly was about, but no one could bring themselves to talk about it. The assembly was full of tears, a few breakdowns, and the first time that everyone had united and stood up for one common cause.
The somber mood remained in the air many minutes later, the funeral being at a stand-still as Burt stood in front of everyone. The empty-bodied coffin of his son lay behind him, only full with tokens of memories that everyone had dropped in before the lid was shut. The older man didn't know what to say, didn't know how to continue on. He had no one left. His parents were dead, his wife was dead, and now his son was dead. He had family, but they were so alienated that no attempt to make contact was made.
Kurt Hummel watches in secret from behind the tree on the hill in the distance. He hated staging his own murder, but he just had to. He had cut all possible ties from this place. He thought it'd be easy apart from his father and closest friends, but he hadn't counted on the rest. Somehow, everyone that he had recognized in Lima was there, standing room only left after the first 30 seats that had been planned. Hundreds of people were standing around, red eyes and shaky breaths the only thing they had in common. They had all shared stories of Kurt, or their thoughts on him before the main people were to go, Burt being the first one of the main people of his funeral.
Kurt blinks away from the grimness of his funeral as he hears the crack of a stick behind him. "What excuse did you give him?" Although his voice is soft and low, it's big enough to carry to the man standing a few feet behind him.
He hears the man sniff before letting out a shaky breath. "I told him that I felt too guilty to attend. He accepted it much easier than Tina or Mercedes."
Kurt nods, expecting as such. "He didn't try to do anything did he?"
"Nah." The shaky breath again. "We talked for ages though. He was interested in how I was affected by you. It's quite a story. I mean, I'm not your bully anymore am I?"
Kurt cracks a small smile. "No, Noah." The smile is gone again as he is hit by the cold breeze again, the hill being high enough to be getting the only wind of the day while everyone at the funeral received none. "How is he?" He is hesitant to ask, but he has to know.
"Good." Puck starts slowly. "Much better know that he's not isolated. The entire club visited him for a bit, but I managed to stay longer." Puck lets out a deep breath. "He's mainly happy that he's not doing this alone. He expected that he would be because most of the people in this place are homophobic bigots."
Kurt smiles at the exact mention of why he's doing this. "Anything else?" He turns his head slightly and takes in his first sight of Noah Puckerman.
This was the boy that Kurt had gone to to carry out his plan. Puck had helped him rig the building, and be the one to call the police anonymously. Kurt had been staying at Puck's place long enough to see the funeral, but the he'll be gone.
Puck looks down when Kurt meets his gaze. "Did you know that he recorded you?"
"Recorded?" Kurt's voice is sharp at the surprise. "What do you mean?"
Puck gulps and sniffs again at the cold weather before he explains. "You were singing. All the time in fact. He told me that he had been playing the recordings all week just so he could hear your voice again. They're from you singing in the kitchen, or in your room." Puck hesitates before bringing his warm gaze up to match Kurt's. "I lost count of how many we listened to instead of talking."
Kurt's bottom lip whimpers, surprised and deeply touched at his fathers affections. He should have known whenever his dad had smiled after Kurt would make dinner, surprised that it was his voice instead of the meal. It makes Kurt's guilt grow a bit more for holding a secret this big from the man. He feels better though knowing that his dad will have so many people that will help him move on and piece together many of the pieces of his heart that he needs to survive.
"That's nice." Kurt mutters before he looks to the ground. "Did you get everything I needed?"
"Yeah." Puck answers before he slides his hands intro his jacket, pulling out a thick vanilla envelope and extending it out to Kurt. "ID, license, I even got a passport just in case for you." Puck gulps as Kurt takes the envelope and pops open the fold. "The birth certificate's in their along with your social security." Kurt raises an eyebrow at Puck before he reaches in and pulls some of the documents out. "I also have some other goodies in there that might make things easier."
"I see." Kurt comments as he flips through the multiple amounts of papers. "I'm impressed. Your work is incredible."
Puck shrugs. "I put more effort into this as usual. Plus we've been talking about this for a month, so I've had plenty of time."
Kurt stops on one document and stops. "So my new name is Chris?"
"It seemed common enough that you wouldn't have any trouble remembering." Puck nods.
Kurt nods as he shuffles the papers back into the envelope and seals it, returning his gaze to Puck's. "This is amazing. I don't know how I can ever thank you for this."
"Just . . . keep me updated once in a while." Puck lets out a shaky breath as a broken look appears on his face. "It's a hard place out there and you're doing something that usually requires a lot of help."
"I know." Kurt gulps. "But they think that my money burned in the fire, so I have a couple of thousand to live with."
"More than that." Puck states to Kurt's surprise before he reaches into his pocket and pulls out a thicker envelope. "I was going to use this to get out of here one day, but I think you'd put it to better use."
"What is it?" Kurt inquires as he accepts the heavy envelope.
"All the money I have saved up." Puck answers in a soft voice. "It's not much, but I figured it'd be enough to match everything you have. It'd give you double."
"Don't worry about it Kurt." Puck looks away from Kurt's questioning gaze to look at the funeral in which Burt is now speaking. "I've been cleaning pools since I was 12 . . . doing extra since I was 13. I don't feel right using that money after I used my body that way. I'd rather have you be able to support yourself."
Kurt lets out a small gasp. "Noah . . . thank you. I promise that I'll use it wisely."
Puck shrugs before he reaches into his jeans pocket. "I also have this for you." He pulls out a small black cell-phone and hands it over to Kurt. "I kept some of my money so I can help you from here. It's part of my plan and no one but me knows the number." He waits for Kurt to reach his shaky hand out to take the phone before he continues. "I want you to call me whenever you get where you're going. I also want regular updates just so I know that you're actually not dead out here."
Kurt smiles as he looks down at the phone. "I really like this. This idea. It's kind of like having my own guardian angel."
Puck chuckles before he sniffles and looks back up to Kurt. "So . . . any idea where you're going?"
Kurt sighs before nodding. "I've always wanted to sing professionally." He gives Puck a hopeful smile. "I was thinking New York. Nothing too big, but some small off Broadway shows. I don't know. I'm probably not that good."
"Don't sell yourself short." Puck gives Kurt a smile before he nods back to Kurt's thoughts. "I wish you the best of luck. I'm just happy that you're getting away from everything."
"Me too." Kurt mutters before he pockets the phone. "You know . . . I'm glad that I came to you about everything. Anyone else would have told me to man up and fight my battles, but you knew that I knew that this was the time to quit. Now I can move towards my real battles." Kurt's voice is suddenly full of tears, becoming thick. "And it's all thanks to you, Noah."
"It's okay, Chris." Puck smiles back.
Kurt snorts before shaking his head. "My new life is Chris. Anytime that I'm with you, I'm Kurt. The one person who I don't have to lie to."
Puck smiles weakly before he steps forward, stuffing his hands into his pockets. "The tank is full on my truck. You shouldn't have to stop anywhere for gas for at least a few hours."
"Are you sure?" Kurt asks hesitantly.
Puck nods. "My ma thinks I already sold it. Everyone else will believe that too. And besides, you need a new vehicle. Your dad has yours and I think he'd notice if that was gone."
Kurt sighs before looking down. "I . . . I still can't believe all that you're doing for me. It's just . . . incredible."
"Well we've become friends." Puck shrugs. "We used to be on the opposite ends of magnets, but I stopped being a bully and that pull weakened until we started hanging out." He brings his brown eyes up to meet Kurt's glasz ones. "And like you being Kurt with me, I can only be Noah when I'm with you. I care about you Kurt and you have been more than a great friend for me."
Kurt can't help the soft smile that appears on his face. "Still . . . thank you. I wish-"
"Just keep in contact." Puck cuts Kurt off with a sad smile. "Keep in contact and maybe . . . maybe we can meet up in a few months. Or years even if that works better."
Kurt smiles and nods. "I'd like that."
"And if you ever feel the need to get a glimpse of home, I can always take a picture or two." Puck offers. "Burt's already invited me over after the funeral. We'll probably watch the game until it gets all sad again. And we still have skype and e-mail. We won't lose touch."
Kurt is shaking with happiness with a growing smile on his face. "I think I need that more than I want it."
Puck chuckles before he steps forward and reaches out, his hands grazing Kurt's hair softly before he grabs the dark hood on the boys' jacket. Kurt shuts his eyes and soaks in the warmness that Puck is providing as the boy lifts his hood and sets it carefully down on Kurt's hair. Puck keeps his hands on either side of Kurt's face before he drops them. Within seconds, Kurt's arms are around his waist and his arms are around Kurt's shoulders. Kurt breathes in Puck as he shoves his face into Puck's neck, Puck doing the same with his head bowed down.
The hug stays like that as they flash back through the past few months. Puck apologizing to Kurt after he lost the Defying Gravity diva-off. Kurt accepting it and inviting Puck out for a peace offering at Breadsticks. Their friendship soared from there, although it was kept on the down low because they were happy when they didn't have to deal with homophobes, the jocks, or even friends questioning the surprising development. Then one month ago, Kurt was attacked by Karofsky and this was when he came to Puck with his plan. He wanted to disappear, start completely anew. Puck was doubtful, but they quickly came to planning everything out. Even in that month, Karofsky and the other jocks had become more aggressive and that just motivated the two of them to push to fake Kurt's death to the best of their abilities. It might not make sense to everyone else, but it worked enough for them.
Puck's most treasured memory of the two of them was the first night that they reconciled. After Breadsticks, they had spent most of that night talking in Kurt's room, each confessing their darkest secrets and fears. Kurt's most treasured memory was the night after, when they repeated the night and talked even more. Puck had admitted to finally being able to be him and Kurt knew that he could trust the boy.
Puck pulls away from Kurt slowly and attempts to hide his own attempt to dry away the tears from his eyes. He knows Kurt saw, but the boy doesn't mention anything as he himself is drying his own tears. With their arms back at their sides, they struggle to communicate any last thoughts. After all, it would be a very long time before they saw each other again.
"Go." Puck mutters, his heart half in the goodbye. "You need to get out of here while everyone else is here. Less chance of anyone noticing you. Even with your hood-"
"You mean your hood." Kurt cuts in as he touches that jacket that Puck had given him, the large jacket draped over his body.
Puck rolls his eyes before continuing. "We can't let anyone recognize you."
"Okay." Kurt lets out a shaky breath. "Do you need a ride or-"
"Please go, Kurt." Puck's weak voice is on the verge of begging. "I'm fighting with every part of myself to keep you here."
Kurt quickly nods before he hugs his arms around himself, feeling all the envelopes on the insides of his jackets, and moves to go past Puck. The tan boy is left staring at the tree, his heart cracking as the distance of Kurt's movement withers away. He stumbles forward until he can rest against the tree, his eyes moving down to see the funeral. It seems to have started to end because now people are moving amongst themselves, all talking quietly to not disturb the pleasant peace.
It's kind of funny seeing everyone there. What surprised him most was the Kurt's tormenters were down there, each of them having red faces. The teachers that did nothing were down there probably sharing stories about how Kurt was so bright and one of their favorites. It sickens him with these people are being so fake about the person they thought they knew. Only he knew Kurt for who Kurt really was.
He jumps slightly when he hears the roar of his old truck, Kurt tearing from the gravel back roads to the older parts of the graveyard. No one comes here anymore, but it makes the perfect spot to watch everything down below. Only a few more seconds go buy before he feels the first tear drop out from the corner of his eye. He shuts his eyes and leans his head against the tree. He was part of the plan from around its inception, but it hurts him to know that his best friend seems to be dead and he probably won't see him for awhile.
He pulls away from the tree and shoves his hands into his jeans before he turns away. He lets the tears flow as he starts walking, knowing that he'll be all cried out by the time he returns to the Hummel household because of the long walk. It doesn't stop him from hurting, but he knows the one day . . . one day he'll see Kurt again.
Hey guys. I had this story written for a while, but I postponed it because of Cory's death. I just didn't want to do a story like this so close. But now, my story is here. It is a one-shot, but I might have a sequel one-shot somewhere in the future. So please, let me know what you think. I'd love to hear your thoughts on a story such as this. :) Enjoy.