Word Count: ~7,000 / ?
Warnings: AU (but using as much canon as possible)
Rating: PG -13 - NC-17 (for individual chapters)
Summary: A local PFLAG scheme uses the lost art of letter writing to bring people together.
Author's Notes -
I've ALWAYS wanted to write a story centred around letter writing and as I was reading rockinhamburger 's latest post of drabbles and her idea for a Kurt/Blaine penpal AU - I almost fell off my chair. So this is a thanks to her for being kind enough to let me take her idea and run with it. I got too excited that evening - see THIS post.
I really REALLY hope you enjoy this story. Please please do let me know what you think. I'm so excited to write this. I have it all mapped out and tons of ideas it's quite insane. It's going to be so lovely to get to be able to write something like this at last.
Finally, the title is taken from the song of the same name by Natasha Bedingfield. It's oddly one of my favourite songs - if you listen to the lyrics I think you'll understand why I used it for this story and these boys - listen here.
MASTERPOST for new readers:
Chapter One, Two, Three, Four, Five, Six, Seven A B C D, Eight A B, Nine, Ten, ElevenA B, TwelveA TwelveB, Epilogue Part One Two Three Four **all links are at the end of chapters EXCEPT for 7A as LJ hates me**
His book bag hung lead-like over his shoulder as he walked, taking long and purposeful strides, down the corridor. It was a route he took every day and each time he made the trip, the enormity of the ceiling, the pretty patterns painted across the walls and the click of his shoes on the hard wood flooring still struck him just as much as the first time he’d stepped in the doorway.
It had been a tough day, being the new kid, but with a warm press to the small of his back courtesy of his mother, he’d managed it. Just.
The drive home didn’t take long. He was, again, used to the same trees and the same large looming house that stood out for the sheer fact that it housed a large and swirling stained glass window that glittered in the afternoon sun. He liked the familiarity of it all, the way it comforted him in a weird way. He wished he’d been able to harbour those feelings a few years ago – maybe it all would have been a little easier.
Now, he had his routine. It wasn’t perfect but it worked and nothing appeared to be changing anytime soon so it was a resignation in itself. He sighed, letting his hands slip down the steering wheel to rest in their familiar position, his elbows slack and shoulders slumped.
Walking tall took its toll.
The drive was short. He switched off the engine and slid his bag back over his shoulder, frowning a little as it pulled at his shoulder. Maybe a few less rehearsals would have been kinder that afternoon, but Wes was a slaver driver if ever Blaine had met one. Rehearsals weren’t so bad though, he thought with a soft smile, as he turned the door handle and slid inside.
His mother was home as usual and clearly she’d been busy. It was Friday afternoon and, like clockwork, the Anderson household buzzed with the promise of the evening ahead. For Blaine, it signalled the repetition of every nicety he could force and a smile so painted that he could mask it in seconds. It was practiced, rehearsed and truly difficult to remove once fixed.
“Darling, you’re home early.”
Blaine blinked back into the moment. “Hi Mom,” he sighed, placing his bag at the foot of the stairs, “took the short cut.”
Lillian Anderson busied herself with a bunch of roses at the entrance, preening and letting her long and manicured fingers daintily tamper with the paper thin petals. Blaine watched with a smile.
“So, how was school?” she asked, turning to catch Blaine’s eye with a soft smile, “did you rehearse today?”
Leaning against the banister, Blaine nodded. “We have our set list for Sectionals mapped out nicely thanks to Wes. I’m singing solo on two numbers.”
Lillian turned not before pushing the intricate glass vase a millimetre to the left. “Blaine, that’s wonderful. Any numbers I’d know?”
“Mainly top forty but I can play them for you later, if you’d like?” he asked glancing up at her with a shrug. The feeling or promise seeped back in again, torturous and destined to be squashed in an instant.
“Oh honey, I’d love to but maybe tomorrow, I’ve got plenty to prepare.” She patted his shoulder gently and guided him into the kitchen to the left. There it was - it always happened the same way.
“Who is it tonight?”
“A partner in a law firm that is hopefully going to take over your father’s business. Henry Jackson from Jackson and Young.” She was busy once more, her hands akin to mechanisms, so adept at this particular practice that it looked rehearsed.
Blaine took his spot at the kitchen counter and slid the stool closer. He always felt so young when he sat at the counter, half expecting his mother to rush forward to plant a kiss at his forehead and drop a cookie in front of him with a sing song smile – the way she used to. He watched her through the same eyes though, the eyes of a son with unwavering affection and an almost desperate longing to keep her close. Her perfume hung in the air always – it often clung to his clothes lightly so he could still smell her a little when he left the house.
She was an immaculate dresser; her clothes designer but extremely simple and elegant.
It was a word he used often to describe her. She was slim so she pulled off the cuts of traditional looks well; her long dark curls either found their home pinned in an demure bun or fell loose but were expertly pinned at her ears to keep it tidy. Nothing about Lillian Anderson felt unconsidered. She was a picture of forward thinking.
He knew he got it from her – his inability to leave the house looking anything other than composed and preened – and, in a way, it was an admirable trait to possess. He’d look at magazines sometimes, eyes lingering on the more fashionable guys lounging on walls or stylishly posing against pillars with slight stubble and a sense of the ‘put together’. They were what anyone would call ‘sexy’ and the look worked for them but he could never seem to put himself in their shoes. He couldn’t be so fickle with himself, he couldn’t throw on anything or put together clothes the way those people did. He stuck with what he knew and colours he could get away with. Nothing more, nothing less. If it worked, why change it?
It was never the same with William Anderson as it was with his mother.
Blaine watched him pass the room and plant a simple kiss on Lillian’s cheek. She waited for it, expecting it, and smiled as she watched her husband leave the room for the lounge.
“Blaine, honey,” she turned, her eyebrows raised, “would you set the table while I finish up here, please?”
Not one to argue, Blaine got up immediately. After a while, he’d learned that doing as he was told was so much easier.
He located the candle sticks quickly and ran his fingertips over the cool metal. They were so familiar to him. He tried, each week, to mix it up a little, placing them in a different pattern, the napkins in a new shape and he’d even tried a new centre piece for a special twist. Each time he’d watched his mother from the doorway smile slowly, her head tilting as she took in his handiwork but, in time, he watched as she busied herself in putting it back and sticking to what she knew.
As he finished up with the last knife, he caught a glimpse of Lillian, a goblet of wine in her hand, resting against the back of the couch above his father. She leaned down slightly to pass him the glass. Blaine shook his head with a bittersweet smile. His father’s hand had moved a little too quickly, reaching before he even knew she was there.
He could time it to absolute clock work.
He’d lie in bed sometimes and have the overwhelming need to just scramble the DVD collection or throw every cushion from the sofa on the floor just so that the house felt spontaneous – just for a second. They both appreciated his artistic streak, this he knew, but he never felt able to express it in the house. He’d keep that side of himself for the confines of his room and the walls of Dalton Academy.
His dreams were far from similar to theirs. He’d close his eyes and walk his way through the existence he’d created for himself. Watching Inception at David’s house had been a dream, knowing that he’d make the perfect architect – he’d planned a multitude of houses, streets... lives for himself for the future that he felt so very at home in them. Each was a little different, possibly reflecting his mood, but they all had the same lived in feel, the same happy patterns and cool decor – understated but stylish. He’d cram boxes full of old records and he’d buy an old player from a market to indulge himself every now and then with the scratchy sound of forgotten times – songs about love and lives long gone would drift out as a soundtrack to his existence as he’d shave or even as he cooked. The couch would drown in cushions and blankets, each able to be tossed without care. The entrance would always be adored with a bunch of flowers; his mother’s tradition would never fail and he liked the smell of fresh flowers. They’d be mixed and a crazy spree of colours and shapes though.
He’d fall into bed of an evening beside a stack of books – some philosophical, some non-fictional about travel and history but mostly novels.
These dreams were frequent. There never seemed to be anyone else in them though. Friends, yes, lovers, no. It wasn’t as if he had any grand aspirations in that department if his past was anything to go by. He wished it, obviously, but it never seemed to work out and he wasn’t good at it all so the effort felt painstakingly counterproductive at best. He’d tried. He’d given it a go and asked a guy out once, who’d said yes and absolutely made his year. He remembered smiling for a week, losing his appetite and stalking the guy’s Facebook profile until his laptop screamed through overuse. He was blonde and gorgeous with bright blue eyes lined with long eyelashes. He was a football player and he played the guitar. He had also said yes – yes.
The ‘date’ was one of those days that he knew he’d never forget. He’d dressed in the best clothes he owned – a pair of dark slim cut jeans and a deep purple button down shirt, fitted and expensive. He’d styled his hair nicely and pressed a dab of his father’s aftershave to the underside of his ear – just in case.
As he’d pulled up to the coffee shop, stomach fizzing with butterflies and heart hammering to the point of passing out, he’d spotted the table of guys instantly. There were a lot of them, including Daniel, and they were laughing.
It’d been a nice thought, one which he’d clung onto a little too tightly and concocted in his mind. Yes, he hadn’t specified why they’d arranged to meet up, nor had they pin pointed that it was in fact a date but Blaine had considered it pretty obvious. He’d stuttered his way through his question, trying so damn hard to stay articulate and confident. He’d even sung most of that afternoon’s impromptu Warbler’s performance straight to Daniel and the blue eyes staring back hadn’t wavered for a second. They were all signs for the positive but there it was – his first sign to the contrary and one in a, now, long list. He wasn’t good at that kind of thing. Maybe he’d get better with age.
His first kiss had been horribly forgetful too. Parties at Dalton were usually formal affairs, planned and organised to within an inch of their lives and filled with the esteemed and wealthy. They were nothing like Warbler parties, which were much more fun and laid back. He’d been introduced to Stefan by Thad who had offered a wink behind his back as he walked away, signalling his sneaky intent. Stefan was tall, lean, blonde (again) and a fencer. He was well spoken and eloquent, almost witty and obviously knew how to dress if his suit was anything to go by but Blaine, after hours of talking to him, had yet to even see a glimpse of the true person behind his eyes. They’d seemed dead somehow, cold and unfeeling.
He still couldn’t even remember how they’d reached the point where lip on lip action was acceptable or even a normal progression; all Blaine could recall was a story about Stefan’s sister’s kitten and his epic saviour of said kitten from a tree in their garden. As a group of guys, possibly tipsy on the free champagne, had passed by singing something obnoxious and full of rude words, Blaine had turned to say something to difuse the odd feeling inside but was met with a pair of firm lips.
It hadn’t been sweet and searching, soft and butterfly inducing, nor had it made his heart beat out of control or palms sweat. His skin hadn’t tingled and coherent thoughts had remained intact so he knew, right there and then, that it had meant nothing.
Stefan hadn’t asked for his number and he wasn’t even sure he’d have taken it if he had.
That was where he stood. There’d been a couple of other kisses, not of any worth or note, and a couple of other guys, none of which had left a lasting stamp on his heart. At the time, he’d felt crushed and devastated but, now, he’d put it down to experience and moved on.
Falling easy and fast was a Blaine Anderson trait and god did he know it. He loved the feeling of gazing into someone else’s eyes and diving straight into the world where those eyes were the only things that mattered. The messiness and swoop of the feelings that came with that moment was addictive and so was the touch of someone close, someone to smile at, someone to nudge playfully, someone to hug or pull near. He didn’t experience it often so when it came and hit hard, Blaine knew he grabbed on tight and ran with it, hoping fiercely that something good would come out of it and that it would last. It never did.
Maybe you had to go for second best, he often found himself thinking. Maybe you weren’t supposed to find that someone who made your stomach flip every time you looked at them. Everyone couldn’t be that lucky.
He didn’t talk about that with his parents though. It was a part of his life he kept to himself. After his past experiences and the many moments overheard and discussions witnessed, Blaine was of no confusion as to where his father’s opinions lay. His sexuality wasn’t something they discussed and Blaine often wondered if it’d ever be a comfortable conversation for them, something they could at least attempt, but it didn’t seem that way. His mother was easier with it, asking him now and then if there was ‘someone special’ and she’d attempt to tease him if he ever mentioned a guy’s name in passing but never in the company of her husband.
William Anderson wasn’t homophobic. He also wasn’t a bad man. He was simply a product of his up bringing, a man of his own time and generation who didn’t understand and, if pushed, didn’t really wish to. Their relationship had stayed intact so far and that was what mattered. They’d share sparse moments of closeness like the time they fixed that car together or the afternoons they’d watch a game and share sparkling cider. It was during those moments he’d see his mother out of the corner of his eyes smiling to herself before disappearing off, humming her own tune.
Blaine sighed, making his way to his room. He knew he’d be forced to come down to later to show his face and offer a hand to shake but, for now, it was a chance to switch on his favourite playlists and check his emails.
Shrugging off his blazer and wriggling out of his tie, he pulled on a cardigan instead and kicked his shoes to the side of his bed. His laptop flashed to life quickly and he smiled as he noticed a ‘Warblers Council’ email from Wes thanking them for their hard work and outlining the minutes of their meeting – he was a tyrant with a gavel when behind the Dalton desk but Wes Montgomery was a good guy and Blaine knew they’d always be friends.
Blaine grabbed his bottle of water from his bag and got to the end of his inbox, not before noticing an email address he wasn’t familiar with, the subject line boldly stating – “Need Someone To Talk To? Lima, Ohio PFLAG’s new and awesome iniative!”
He smiled, remembering David’s insistence that he join PFLAG and mention it to his parents – David’s sister was a lesbian so their family was big on inclusion. Blaine could remember shaking his head, pushing David off his laptop and announcing that his father wouldn’t be seen dead at a meet and greet to discuss the community’s plans for LGBT youth or whatever else they did.
He opened the email though, reading intently out of curiosity. By the time he reached the bottom, his fingers moved of their own accord, clicking the large blue link and typing his details so fast in case he changed his mind.
What the hell.
It was a typical day at McKinley High. Nothing was out of the ordinary at all, not that he was expecting anything else when he left the house that morning but a little bit of variety would have been nice.
Rachel stomped up to the front of the choir room, the plastic soles of her pumps clacking against the floor as everyone else just sat, too used to her tantrums that they barely even flinched, except Mr Schue.
“Now Rachel,” he began, taking a breath, and Kurt just wanted to simultaneously laugh at his inability to feign composure and the disgusting knitted sweater vest he was sporting, “we have so much talent in this club and we’ve already decided that we’re recruiting new members.”
Kurt zoned out. It wasn’t that Glee club wasn’t important, it was just so damn repetitive now. They had a chance to hit New York if Sectionals and Regionals went their way and he had a scrap book dedicated solely to this end. It was filled with ideas and outfit designs, stuffed with flyers for places he’d like to visit and sights he’d like to see.
As Glee Club drew to a close, Kurt made his way to History. Walking the corridors again, after weeks of being away from them, felt odd. He’d forgotten the tug of anxiety as he turned his back to the constant stream of people and opened his locker to slide out his books. Smiling as he glanced at the photographs he and Mercedes had taken over the break: their mandatory face pack shot, which Kurt ordinarily would have burned but Mercedes had gone on and on about how it resembled something from a cool teen movie, a shot of them smiling together in the sun at the park with enormous ice creams and finally, the two of them posing in sunglasses and ‘getting their diva on’ as Mercedes had so fondly put it. That’s how he’d spent his Summer break.
Turning his head to check for the flash of a red Letterman jacket, Kurt sighed, taking one last look at the remnants of his precious Summer and closed the door.
As always, History was boring. It wasn’t for lack of interest, just the lack of imagination that Mrs Fairbanks showed when talking about the Titanic. All Kurt could see, as he closed his eyes momentarily, were long pastel dresses lined with lace and ladies with elbow length gloves and slanted hats which framed their porcelain faces. He smiled picturing the gentlemen in smooth suits and shiny shoes, their couture cuts so refined and oozing expense.
To be jolted out of such a daydream by a sheet of paper being thrown so fast at his desk it caused a draft wasn’t ideal. Kurt frowned, shooting a look in the student’s direction. Their task was to answer questions from the work book – so exciting.
Lunch was quiet. He spent it with Mercedes, as always, playing their favourite game – people watching.
“Kurt, it’s not that bad, it’s just a little bright,” Mercedes laughed, sipping her soda up a straw.
“It’s offensive. Nobody in their right mind wears that much lime green and don’t get me started on this little number you’re sporting today... we need another closet intervention.”
Flashing Kurt a look designed only to kill, she pursed her lips. “What is wrong with you? I mean, you’re usually snappy but even this is a little much for you.”
He sighed, straightening his shoulders and raising his eyebrows in a manner entirely rehearsed. “I’m fine. I just don’t see why all the rest of us should have to be subject to garish colours this early in the morning.”
Mercedes bit back a giggle. “Kurt, you’re wearing a bow tie with clocks on it. Sweetie, something’s up and you’re not telling me and you know I’ll get it out of you eventually.”
“Whatever,” Kurt huffed, picking at his salad, “let’s just get this day over with and we’ll both be happy.”
Kurt could feel the underlying sense of impending doom. It wasn’t a new feeling, not by any means, but after a holiday from it, the realisation that it was going to have to become the norm again – at least until the Christmas break – was a little too hard to take.
It was as he walked to French he saw them.
“Hey there lady lips, meet anyone special over the holidays? Another fairy to prance around with, huh?”
He kept walking, his skin prickling as he felt them grow closer. It was the way they smelled that made his stomach churn - a mixture of turf, cheap aftershave and burgers. They kept taunting, their words becoming less and less inventive and more akin to random bursts of hatred for something Kurt was sure they just didn’t understand – they never would.
“That’s it, fag, you know what’s good for you.”
Kurt held his breath and kept walking. The faces around him stared, their eyes piercing his resolve as he blinked back tears. He promised to never let them break him, to never allow their words to get through but he just had to get used to it again, he had to build up that tolerance once more. That didn’t stop his fingers from shaking though. He clutched tighter to the strap of his bag.
He turned slowly, half expecting the soft and gentle tone to have been imaginary but it wasn’t, especially as he took in Miss Pillsbury’s pale pink blouse and fitted lemon skirt. She smiled, opening her door a little wider and beckoning him in.
Her office always smelled fresh. Kurt took a deep breath as he sat, silently and upright, in the chair opposite her desk.
“I was hoping I’d bump into you today, Kurt,” she said simply, her hands daintily resting on the writing pad in front of her, her nails clean and cut precisely. Kurt smiled a little. She truly was something to behold. Yes, her hair was ginger of the strongest kind but it was also her best asset. She made the most of herself and often wore some impressive heels which took the eyes away from some of the more eye watering adornments that hung around her neck – Kurt’s particular favourite being the metal flower chain in purple. She was a kind soul, squeaky clean and slightly frightening in that regard, but sweet nonetheless.
“And why is that?” he asked simply.
“Well, I received an email from a group called PFLAG and I’ve done some research into what that group is-“
“I know what PFLAG is,” he corrected her with a nod.
“Yes, yes of course. I suppose it comes with being um- well, what I was going to say was that the scheme they’re running might be of interest to you. It’s a letter writing scheme designed for young teens, boys and girls,” she nodded excitedly, her hands now moving in flapping motion in front of her chest, “to get to know others and to be able to find someone to talk to... should they need it.”
Kurt was sure he was hearing something other than the words coming from her mouth. A letter writing scheme for random gay kids.
“I’ve got friends,” Kurt stated, matter of factly, watching as her eyes drooped causing her to resemble a kicked puppy. It would have been endearing had she not just suggested that he was so lonely that he might consider talking to an unknown via snail mail. It was mildly insulting and also verging on tragic.
“I don’t think so. I’ve got homework and Glee club.”
He watched her nod curtly, a small smile forming. “You know, Kurt, I really do admire you taking on so much and focusing on what you love. It’s very... healthy,” he sang, her shoulders shrugging with each syllable. “I also know that you have good friends like Mercedes and Tina and Rachel.”
Rachel ‘deer sweater’ Berry. Kurt winced, pulling his bag tighter to him. He may just have to jump in front of a bus if that ever became reality.
She let her hand rest slightly in front of her. Kurt wondered if it was her own way of reaching out without actually touching. It was sweet, in an odd way. “What I’m trying to say is that, you have good friends here but maybe it’d help if you had someone else to talk to, someone who knows a little more about what it’s like to, um, who knows how it feels to um, well, who understands.”
He had to bite down a laugh. She was a trooper, regardless of her scarily large eyes and lack of tact, and it was obvious she cared. “Look, Miss Pillsbury, I appreciate the thought, I really do, but I don’t think it’s a good idea.”
Kurt smiled, pushing back the chair in order to make his escape. He watched her scramble in her in-tray, pulling out a small brochure. “Just take it,” she urged with pleading eyes so round and doe that Kurt was sure he’d have accepted anything she wished to give him, “and think about it Kurt, it might be good for you.”
He made his escape quickly. The feeling of Miss Pillsbury’s eyes on him as he walked up the corridor was slightly disconcerting but he knew she meant well, hell, she was one of the only teachers at McKinley who did and she seemed to really see the situation. The McKinley hallways weren’t a stage like they were for Rachel Berry and they weren’t a stomping ground like they were for Puck – they were a necessity. A painful, drab necessity in which Kurt knew he was forced to endure unknown levels of torture before he could escape Lima, Ohio for good into the big wide world. He’d head to New York and Broadway where being theatrical was not only embraced, it was celebrated.
A week later
“Don’t think you’ll get away with it if I see you flaunting that junk in my face again, Hummel.”
Kurt screwed his eyes closed, his heart hammering as Azimio and Karofsky backed down the hallway, high fiving and being so damn proud of themselves for the fact they could string a sentence together. Something inside hurt.
Suddenly, the year had begun and not even Glee Club could mask the worst parts of the day, the parts that were to be endured and brightened by singing about it or sharing a stage with the rest of the group. It wasn’t helping as much anymore.
Two weeks later
He’d never been wrong before but it seemed that Kurt Hummel had lost his ability to spot the most dyed hair from a mile off. It was blonde, perfectly, styled with just enough wax and just too much pazazz to belong to a straight guy and the lips – they were a plus too.
He was cute.
It wasn’t as if the McKinley halls were crawling with cute or in fact human. Half of the guys spent more time with their hands under their girlfriend’s shirts or clutching a game’s console than on a book or an instrument. They weren’t particularly cultured. On the scale from one to ten, they didn’t rank high in the looks department either.
Brett, his partner in English class, was a typical example. His hair hadn’t seen shampoo for far far far too long, his clothes were rumpled and smelled as if something had died in the lining and the boy had stubble – actual stubble. Not that stubble wasn’t sexy or becoming on the correct face ala Tom Ford, but Brett’s stubble existed through sheer laziness, a trait that added to the wonderful pile that made up that of his English ‘buddy’. There was also the matter of his voice, slurred and monotone – the product of either an unfortunate lack of brain cells or too much of the happy herb.
The pretty blonde who seemed to light up McKinley’s halls with his newness was an exception. His clothes were ironed, his face shaved, his eyes bright and not to mention the hair.
“Would you stop staring,” Mercedes urged, elbowing him in the side.
He frowned, flashing her a look of mild annoyance. “Mercedes, what do see when you look at that boy?”
She spent a few seconds staring, her eyes raking from his head to his toes until she smiled, slow and knowing. “He’s a fine specimen of guy, that’s what he is.”
“He’s also gay.”
It was a debate that went on for days. It was also the fuel to the fire that caused Finn to jump down his throat once more and warn him off ‘tainting’ the new guy. It was one solo, one chance to sing with someone who wasn’t a complete Neanderthal and who quite possibly could play for the same team.
After their exchange in the hallway, Kurt felt as if he was on air. He walked a little taller and there was a definite spring in his step. Sam was nice. He hadn’t said no and certainly hadn’t flinched away as if Kurt was some alien freak sent to convert him – he’d smiled. It was a start. A very promising start.
A few days later
Kurt kept his eyes on his hands, knotting together. He knew he’d cry if he let himself, the tears running hot and fast down his face out of sheer frustration. Of course Sam was straight, of course he was into Quinn, of course he’d been graceful enough to not turn Kurt down but Kurt couldn’t mistake the slight twinge of relief in Sam’s face as he’d let him down gently.
Watching them sing was sickening. They were so blonde. It was then that he promised himself he’d never do it again. He’d never jump in feet first, heart first, and allow himself to dream before he had solid proof that the other person would even look twice in his direction.
The ache inside was always there. He’d suppressed it after Finn, telling himself to grow up and to move on but there was always that spark of ‘what if’ that formulated. He was just as deserving as Quinn or Tina and, hell, if Rachel Berry could hold down a guy then there was no reason why he couldn’t but there was a voice in the back of his mind, taunting and cruel, that spoke only of loneliness as if it was something he should get used to.
His dad had all but agreed with it. Someone just as brave? It didn’t seem possible to find that, not in Lima. Kurt swallowed, letting his brain drown out the pretty little notes of Sam’s guitar, his eyes dragging away from Quinn’s as she fluttered her eyelashes expertly.
He kept his eyes on the chair in front instead, willing the day to be over so he could go home, alone, and maybe finish off some homework, alone, then go help out his dad or cook or sew... alone. The days stretched out now with intermittent harassment and nobody who truly understood what it felt like to want so much but for it to be so far out of your grasp that it physically hurt to consider it.
That evening, after finishing up with dinner, Kurt found himself sitting in the centre of his bed, his laptop perched in front of him and a small blue brochure by his side. He typed fast, his fingers shaking slightly as they stabbed the keys one by one.
Please find attached the first letter from your new pen friend. All instructions can be found on our website but know that all correspondence shall be anonymous till such time as you feel able to exchange addresses and contact details.
We hope our introductory format and helpful hints for topics can give you an insight into the person you will hopefully get to know.
The ‘Getting to Know You’ Team
Lima, Ohio PFLAG
---- ---- ---- ---- ----
I guess I should say hello. I’m not really sure what to say to someone I’ve never met before, especially as we’re writing via letter. It’s nice to meet you or write to you.
I wasn’t sure if this would be a good idea as it isn’t something I’d usually do but my Grandfather used to say ‘try everything once’ and he lived a great life so I’ll take his advice and go with that.
The service said we should write a little about ourselves:
I’m Blaine. We’re not supposed to give out surnames so I’ll refrain. I’m gay. I came out a few years ago. I go to a private school and transferred here last year.Rules here are enforced and codified so nobody dares step out of line. It’s comforting.
I like to sing and I’m in a highly respected show choir but if you’re not into that kind of thing then it can seem lame but we’re serious about it and we have fun with it too. I’ve had the honour of singing most of the solos this year, so that must mean something, I suppose.
I like to read too. I have stacks of books in my room that I haven’t read but I collect them for when I do have time.
I don’t have any brothers or sisters. I have no pets either. I don’t have a boyfriend.
I sound exciting, don’t I? I play the piano. That’s interesting, isn’t it? My parents signed me up for lessons when I was five and I’ve been playing every since at recitals and concerts. I love music. I love making music, listening to music, writing music...
I hope you like it too because you might find me obnoxious if not.
I know that letter writing might seem a little out dated and it’s almost a forgotten art form but, to me, it’s something I really like the thought of. I suppose you could call me a romantic at heart and some might even say I’m a little cheesy but there’s a beauty in it. It’s personal as, right now, you’re reading my handwriting and the very same pen strokes I’m making. It’s one of the rawest forms of communication and one of the truest, I suppose. It’s artistic too, which I like.
I know this might sound cheesy, there’s that word again, but I hope you get on ok at school and you are happy. When I read some of the entries on the forum on the website before I signed up, so many people were sad and afraid. I hope you’re not one of them. If you are then please know that if you need someone to talk to or just someone to write at then I’d be glad to step up.
I don’t really know what else to say so I’ll leave it there. I really look forward to reading your letter.
---- ---- ---- ----
Kurt smiled, re-reading it again and feeling himself sigh as he read Blaine’s obviously sincere message. He was sweet. He was also musical. He had a silly name but, as Kurt read the letter again, he felt... warm. It was strange, not knowing the person at all yet their words were able to portray so much. There was the odd twinge of embarrassment that came and went when Kurt found himself wondering if he was pathetic for writing to some stranger but then he remembered the way that people in days gone by had communicated and how so many heroines in books and movies had waited patiently for the written word or had raced down sweeping staircases to retrieve a long awaited message.
It was a thought so fused with romance and whimsy that Kurt barely had chance to breathe before he found his fountain pen and began to write.
---- ---- ---- ----
I love music. I live music and I’m sure I came out of the womb singing, and possibly told the midwife she’d look better as a blonde or something like that. Your worries are unfounded.
I like to read too but I’ll admit that instead of books by my bed, I have every Vogue in existence since I was approximately fourteen. Everyday is an opportunity for fashion after all.
I have no brothers or sisters. I live with my dad and he’s dating Carole who is the mother of one of the boy’s in my Glee Club, Finn. It’s a situation...
Yes, I’m in a Glee Club. Spooky, huh? We’re led, if you can call it that, by a teacher called Will Schuster – he wears vests and likes to use the white board a little too much but he keeps Rachel Berry in check so I guess he’d good for something. Rachel’s our ‘star performer’ – I used the quotation marks for a reason. I could sing her under the table any day of the week unless it’s Barbra, there she has me stumped.
I love musicals (Wicked and Gypsy are surpass able in my eyes), Patti LuPone, old movies, lots of TV shows I’ll not list for fear of wasted paper, sewing and I make a killer soufflé. My best friend is Mercedes and she can be best described as a stone cold diva. Her voice could shatter glass in the best way possible.
We have a lot in common. I play the piano too but I don’t think I’d be as good as you. I let lessons slide a few years ago. It’s admirable that you kept it up what with your show choir commitments too. You must be busy!
Thank you for what you said. I read the forum too. School’s ok. It’s not easy but it’s not the worst it could be either. I wouldn’t say I’m happy there either. You’re lucky to go to a school like yours – it sounds amazing. If I walked down the corridor and so much as looked at another guy you can betcha bottom dollar that someone would have something to say about it and it wouldn’t be pretty.
Letter writing is definitely a lost art. I have a set of the prettiest stationary from a few Christmas’ ago that I haven’t been able to use. I like the romantic notion too – maybe TOO much. It reminds me of old movies where people would write to each other on parchment and with quills. Maybe I’ll buy a quill.
The service said to keep these introductory letters brief. I suppose if people don’t like the sound of the other person then you haven’t wasted your time and made a fool out of yourself on paper. There’s no obligation to reply at all, just so you know.
Thank you for your letter.
Blaine smiled, reading the letter for the third time. He found himself laughing, especially at the midwife line and the fact that Kurt, whoever he was, was seriously writing out his odd longing for ancient stationary as if it was stream of consciousness.
Sitting in the centre of his bed, his shoes kicked off and feet tucked under him, Blaine found himself itching to reply. It was that paragraph, the one about not needing to reply. It felt sad almost and there was something in the way that Kurt kept his sentences short - not to mention sarcastic - when talking about his experiences at school, that made Blaine’s heart clench.
It felt odd. He’d signed up to the scheme on a whim, not expecting it to go any further than a simple introductory letter but before he knew it, he’d grabbed a pen off his desk and begun to write his reply.