Title: Au Pair (5C/10)
Word Count: ~6,000
Characters: (varies) Kurt/Blaine, Rachel, Isobelle, Blaine's parents - William and Monica
Warnings: Oh so AU! Light angst.
Rating: PG-13 - NC-17 (Individual Chapter rating PG-13)
Summary: After moving to New York and taking on NYADA with one Ms Rachel Berry, Kurt soon realises that reality has a way of sneaking up on dreams. With money tight, Kurt realises he needs a job.
The Andersons are a family in crisis. Monica and William Anderson, high flying lawyers, decide it’s time to employ a nanny for their daughter, Bella, but Kurt soon realises that she’s not the only one in the family who needs a helping hand. The Andersons have a son and, unlike Mary Poppins, Kurt realises he might be a little bit out of depth.
I've kept all of my rambling (and apologising for the wait!) for my Author's Notes at the end so, without much ado, here's Chapter 5C. Thank you SO SO much to anyone who has been EXCEPTIONALLY kind about this story. I really do hope you enjoy!
It was strange having two other people inhabiting their tiny space but the one thing Kurt couldn’t shake was the feeling of envelopment, being wrapped up in a bubble of warmth and being able to provide comfort.
He’d always been that latent love of caring for other people but when life made it so that you needed all the tender loving care for yourself, the precious moment where Kurt knew he was able to give some of that back made him feel worthwhile. Being handy and appreciated was a lovely feeling and, for Blaine and Bella, Kurt knew he was doing a good thing.
Blaine had borrowed a pair of soft cotton pants and luckily had a vest under his many layers to fall back on. He sat cross legged with his woollen cardigan draped around his shoulders in the middle of their couch atop Kurt’s newly made make shift bed. Apparently the shower had worked wonders if the impossibly cute quirk at the corner of his mouth was anything to go by.
“Would you like some water to take to bed?” Kurt asked, stepping back into the lounge after changing too. Opting for his favourite cotton pants and t-shirt felt much more fitting than his usual pair of stately pyjamas. Blaine’s eyes widened as he walked a little further into the room.
“That would be great. Thank you.” Kurt chased Blaine’s expression and felt his stomach flutter at the coyness hidden there. Blaine was soft like this – natural and honest – with his edges worn down.
“Don’t feel as if you can’t go say goodnight to Bella. I had a word with Rachel while you were in the shower and she promised to keep an eye on her all night. Rachel has an extra cot in there so Bella’s very comfortable. It seems that Isobelle may be being treated to a dramatic reading of some of Barbra Streisand’s memoirs, especially from the early Seventies. Rachel has this thing for Robert Redford.”
Blaine bit his lip, mooning with an edge of thinly veiled ecstasy. “She’s not the only one.”
Laughing and feeling lighter and giddy like a child, Kurt nodded. “Nice taste you’ve got there. We should have a conversation.”
Kurt cocked an eyebrow. “I’ll hold you to that,” he said defiantly before beginning a nightly organisation of the refrigerator, putting aside supplies for the new day ahead and planning meals and snacks. It was force of habit but Blaine was breathing faintly in the background and suddenly it didn’t seem important. Bed was a good idea because suddenly the room felt half the size and it wasn’t because it was already about the width of a postage stamp.
“I think I’ll head to bed,” Kurt managed, swallowing hard. “If you need anything, I always sleep with my phone by my side so just come in or give me a call.”
It was then that Kurt noticed the very length of Blaine’s eyelashes, fluttering in the lamp light and it was definitely time to ensconce himself in the safety of his own bedroom.
How had it not dawned on him that Blaine would be sleeping a mere room away?
How had it taken so long to realise how massive the night was in terms of... everything?
“Thank you. I’ll be fine, though. I’m wiped out if I’m honest. It’s been, um... yeah. It’s been one of those days, but thank you. For everything.”
Blaine cocked his head, hair crinkling between his neck and shoulder. Kurt stuffed his hands into the safety of his pockets.
He swallowed and swiped at his hair mindlessly. “There’s really no problem. I’m just pleased we could help in some way.”
He offered what was supposed to be a breezy grin but it crumbled into something much more meaningful. Kurt coughed and knew for a fact he was unable to hide the blush fighting at his cheeks.
“You ok?” Blaine asked with the hint of a smirk and that was it.
“This is just weird.” He rushed out but made the effort to stand tall. “It’s so odd seeing you in my apartment in my pyjamas on my couch, that’s all.”
Threading the fringe of the nearby blanket, Blaine smiled down at his hands. “I guess it’s different. I’m so used to having you around my home but you’re contractually bound to be there but –“
“Oh that makes me sound like a heartless bitch!” Kurt gasped affronted.
Laughing, Blaine shook his head and made eye contact – eventually. “No, no, you know what I mean.”
“I know. Just teasing. It’s a strange situation and I suppose I’m not used to having people that aren’t our families or friends from home here. We’re usually far too busy to have guests.”
“Too busy being fabulous?” Blaine asked, his eyes sparkling. Kurt clung tight to the insides of his pockets and focused on breathing even when a laugh escaped.
“Exactly. And on that note, I think it’s about time I left you to sleep and stopped babbling on about this being weird. It’s hardly hospitable, is it?”
Blaine shrugged, smiling. “I don’t know. I’m feeling pretty at home right now.”
“Well,” Kurt curtseyed as he made his way through the kitchen, turning to offer a soft smile, “just leave a glowing reference in the visitor’s book on the way out in the morning. Breakfast’s at eight sharp.”
The sound of Blaine’s fond laughter was the last thing Kurt heard as he edged his door closed and threw himself into the centre of his bed, muffling sounds of giddiness into the high thread count sheets.
* * * * * * * *
The hushed tones of Bella and Rachel died down and Kurt listened as Blaine wished Bella a goodnight outside of his door with whispered reassurances. It was a night of the unfamiliar but if New York had taught Kurt anything, it was that the city’s spontaneity was infectious and unavoidable.
It was also noisy.
The drone of traffic had become comforting of late but it was deafening tonight. It dawned on Kurt that he’d never focused on the nuances of the background noise, never wondered who was out there making those noises at such an hour and it was then that he clutched his bolster pillow, the realisation hitting hard with the true grandeur of life.
On the other side of the door was a boy who, much like most of New York, was damaged and seeking comfort. He was a revelation, a shock of life and yet he was just another person and someone who was just as in need as Kurt knew he was himself.
Leaving Ohio had been like stepping into the sparkling lights of Broadway, blinded by the promise and twinkle of opportunity but the reality and truth of it all was no less wonderful, it was just so very real.
It was all hard work and compromise; it was humbling and grounding whilst providing the chance to soar and inflate even the most modest egos. This new life and the brilliance of the new surroundings inflated life to bursting point but simply made the world starker and strangely rawer than it had ever seemed, even in small town Ohio.
It was laughable knowing that there’d been so much pain back there. Now, considering it all, it wasn’t difficult to see why being in New York offered a new perspective. The enchantment of the Big Apple truly did slap you in the face with reality.
Blaine was another small town boy in the big city and the fact he was accompanied by his parents was irrelevant. He had every avenue open to him, the money to choose his own path and the drive and talent to accomplish whatever he wished but instead of being able to succumb to the many bright paths open and inviting him, he’d had door slammed in his face and the glittering promise of dreams and ambition removed.
It was no wonder that frustration ached behind Blaine’s eyes. He pushed his own boundaries and was still so soft and gentle with it until he was faced with yet more blunt rejection. For a boy who was as capable of hearing ‘yes’ as much as Kurt was, Blaine was accustomed to the opposite and everything about that was so wrong.
Coming to New York, there was the dream of everything falling into place and making sudden and spectacular sense but nothing had changed – not really. Kurt was still the same person: he had the same unruly bed hair that took an hour of styling to tame, the same hateful softness to his hips that only the best cut pants could hide, the same combination skin that was only regulated by constant work and the very same internal struggles and insecurities.
Nothing had changed.
New York didn’t make anything better, just bigger and brighter and harsher.
Blaine offered a scarily welcome sense of comfort in a city renowned for drowning its inhabitants.
In other words, sleep was impossible.
Tossing his bolster pillow to one side, Kurt slid out of bed and ignored the shiver over his skin to slip on his slippers. He eased open his door and turned to edge it closed without its tell-tale squeak when a light flickered on and caused him to whip around, back slamming hard into the handle.
“Ow. Oh my god. Ouch.”
Blaine’s fumbling and half-giggle-half-desperate apology came quick. “I’m so sorry. I didn’t mean to scare you – “
“It’s ok. It’s fine,” Kurt gasped, eyes closed and rubbing at his hip. “It’s not like I forgot you were here but I expected you to be asleep not lying in wait to frighten me half to death.” He smiled then, opening his eyes and sucking in air at the sight of Blaine and his bed hair. It was way worse than Kurt’s ever became.
“I’m really sorry,” Blaine said, wincing in apology. “I can’t sleep and I saw your door open. I was actually trying to let you know I was awake without you reaching the sink for water or something and seeing me sitting in the dark like some horror movie moment.”
“It’s ok,” Kurt laughed, shaking his head. Blaine’s eyes were heavy but glittering with spots of light cast in from the window. He looked so handsome even in a dishevelled state.
How anyone could do anything to hurt him was unfathomable.
“Let’s sit. I think my nerves need a moment.”
It was a sign of comfort that sitting in the dark beside Blaine with a rapid heart and pillow creased cheeks didn’t make him too frantic.
“So, why couldn’t you sleep?” Kurt asked, gracefully perching on the couch. Their knees rested together gently.
“Not sure, really,” Blaine said quietly, tugging a cushion onto his knee. “Long day. Plenty on my mind. I just keep thinking about Bella and how I’ve dragged her into this and made it her problem too when it’s not. It shouldn’t be. I didn’t think about her. Only me.”
Something lurched inside. “What are you saying?” Kurt spat, turning sharply. “Don’t you think you’ve got enough to worry about? Bella may be small but she’s like a sponge. She picks up on moods and emotions and hears more than people give her credit for and I know she’s not happy. The only way she’s ever going to feel at ease is if you do because you may have not noticed but you’re special to her and she looks up to you. You’re no use to her feeling the way you do and things at home being the way they are. You took her out of that situation because she was upset. This is not something to beat yourself up about.”
Breathing deeply, Kurt stared back at Blaine, mapping the flickers in his eyes until they settled and flooded with warmth.
“I really needed to hear that.”
“Yes, well,” Kurt laughed, shifting to pull one of blankets up over their knees, “if it’s a pep talk you require then I charge twenty dollars an hour. Appointments can be made with my secretary.”
“Rachel?” Blaine grinned, dopey and wide.
“Oh god, no. I’d kill her in a week.”
After a moment, Kurt broke the silence and nervous pattern of sporadic glances with a shaky breath. “I was lying awake thinking about New York and how my expectations aren’t really in line with reality. Do you have a bucket list?”
Blaine leaned comfortably against the back of the couch and tipped his head to press into the cushion. Kurt smiled to himself at Blaine’s choice of snuggling apparatus. It was one of his favourite additions to their apartment and chosen for the wonderful softness of fabric, so much so that Kurt had forgotten how many times he’d cuddled it close and thought of home.
“I guess so. I don’t write it down or anything but I have a long list of dreams.”
“Tell me some,” Kurt rushed and patted his knees in excitement. Dreams were good. They’re your motivation, Rachel would always say. They keep you going.
Blaine smiled a little and the darkness in his far-away eyes slipped away, replacing them with a warm glow that Kurt recognised as hope. “I’ve always wanted to spend a holiday in a log cabin. Possibly Christmas or New Year. I know we’re supposed to want to be in Times Square to watch the ball drop but I like the idea of seclusion and spending it with someone special. Is that weird?”
“Not in the slightest.” Kurt took a slow breath in an attempt to push out the blissful image of curling up in front of a crackling fire as the snow outside fell like powdered sugar, Blaine curling close and –
“Tell me one of yours.”
Kurt was back in the room and suddenly rushed hot under Blaine’s gaze. “Well, I ticked a couple off when I moved here but I want to lay a rose at the birth place of Noel Coward for bringing the world Brief Encounter and Barefoot in the Park. That one still stands.”
“Oh Trevor Howard in a trench coat.”
Speechless didn’t even come close. “You, Blaine Anderson, have impeccable taste and that is a compliment I don’t often bestow.”
Blaine’s eyes were radiant, creased at the edges and adorably sincere. “I’m honoured. Tell me another.”
“We’re going for a quick fire round?”
Nodding, Blaine sat up straight in preparation. “Yes. Go.”
Kurt swallowed to quell a rush of giddy delight. “I want to get married by thirty.”
“I want to play Marius in Les Miserables someday.”
“Nice. I want to work for the House of McQueen or at least contribute something.”
“I want to take Bella to Orlando. I want to see her face when she meets the Disney Princesses and Mary Poppins.”
“I want to meet Julie Andrews and take her for tea and cake.”
“I want to be alive to see all three Hunger Games movies.”
“Oh dear. I want to visit London and picnic in the park next to Buckingham Palace.”
“I want someone to tailor all of my clothes especially for me including custom made bow ties and jackets.”
“That one is perfect,” Kurt laughed. “I want to go on a date with Marc Jacobs. I don’t care what he wants in return for a freebie but I’d be willing to acquiesce.”
“Daring,” Blaine deadpanned. “I want to meet Brian Ferry and Paul McCartney and shake their hands.”
“I want to see my face or name on a Billboard in Times Square.”
“I want to be there to interrogate Bella’s first boyfriend or girlfriend about their intentions.”
“I want to see my Dad succeed in his political goals and also crack his addiction to full fat coke.”
“I want to see marriage equality in all fifty states.”
“Agreed. I want to be there to congratulate Ms Rachel Berry on her opening night of her Broadway debut with a meal at Sardi’s and a bunch of expensive handpicked tulips in pink. It’s her favorite color.”
“I want to graduate but get back into performing in some professional capacity. I never want to stop working with kids though so I’ve always dreamed of working part-time or freelance for a charity or something.”
“I want to see Lady Gaga in concert and I want to be wearing a better costume than her.”
Blaine muffled his chuckle into the cushion. “I want to own a Saville Row suit. Custom made,” he said in mock seriousness.
“Pricey,” Kurt giggled, skin tingling with how perfect it felt to share dreams with someone who didn’t mock or laugh. “I want to be invited to a movie premiere and photographed on a legitimate red carpet. I have a pose perfected and everything.”
Blaine rolled his eyes fondly. “I want to road trip in a vintage Mustang with the top down. I want to stop somewhere with a nice view and sit on the hood of the car and drink wine from the bottle.”
“We’re getting elaborate now,” Kurt mused, tucking his head against the couch and looking directly into Blaine’s eyes for the next one. “I want to fall in love.”
Blaine didn’t flinch. He just stared back, breathing deep, and answered with a soft, “Me too.”
Kurt pressed himself into the warmth and a little closer to Blaine but even the tiny shift in proximity felt overwhelming, Blaine’s heat like a natural aura surrounding him where he sat. The room seemed to shrink.
“Um, it’s your go.” It was difficult to find a place to look, hard to focus because Blaine’s eyes were such a rich brown, molten and glowing autumnal in a way that made logical thought impossible. Kurt focused on breathing instead, watching Blaine’s lip catch between his teeth as he stared down at his fingers and the gentle tracks they were tracing against the folds of material.
But all it took was a deep breath and he was looking back and right into Kurt’s eyes with his trademark depth and intensity.
“I want to kiss you.”
Five words and Kurt couldn’t move. Blaine’s heartbeat vibrated through the short distance between them and it wasn’t hard to mistake the nervous tremor to Blaine’s face, the way his confident facade was poised to mask his vulnerability but Kurt’s heart ached with a new kind of desperation.
He wanted to strip it bare and pull all of Blaine’s barriers away until he could crawl inside and allow himself that freedom too. At last.
“Um,” Kurt managed, fingers trembling. He swallowed and Blaine shifted on the couch, eyes suddenly wide.
“Oh my god, I just ruined everything didn’t I?” he asked. In a second, Kurt’s fingers were shaking around Blaine’s, the distance between them halved.
“No. No you didn’t ruin anything. You just, um, you took me by surprise,” Kurt said in haste, meeting Blaine’s unwavering eye contact. “I, um, you want to kiss me?”
Teasing spots of crimson fought at Blaine’s cheekbones and Kurt knew that the touch of Blaine’s skin was the only anchor keeping him from squealing into a nearby cushion.
“I wanted to say it. To tell you. To let you know how, um, how I feel.”
“You... you want to kiss me?” Why were they the only words he could say?
“I do,” Blaine sighed out, lips quirking a fraction. “Is that ok?”
“What? Now?” Kurt gasped, skin burning hot. He could feel his heart thrumming in his ears, the room devoid of oxygen as Blaine threaded his hands in tighter and held on.
Slowly, Blaine nodded. He offered a shaky smile but his eyes were shining. “Yes.”
“In my apartment in the middle of the night while your sister and my lunatic of a best friend slash roommate are asleep in the next room?”
“Kurt,” Blaine laughed in a whisper, closing his eyes and pressing his eyes to the couch. Kurt’s skin tingled wildly and all the while Blaine sat there looking so alive, his hair crinkled and head cocked against a cascade of cashmere. He looked cosy. He looked like home.
“I’m sorry. I... I just. You want to kiss me.”
Blaine’s expression faltered. “It’s really ok if you don’t feel the same way. I know that this is crazy but there’s only so long you can keep something inside and I didn’t want to stand in the way of your job because I know how important it is. I know how important it is to Bella – “
Kurt ceased the rambling with a hand warm and wide against Blaine’s arm. “I get it.” Inching forward, he smiled woozily. “It’s just a shock, that’s all. I didn’t – “
“You didn’t know? Oh god, I was so sure I was obvious and you knew.”
The tension was too much. It was all about Blaine’s eyelashes, the flecks of gold in his eyes, the sweet curve of his cheek and how soft the skin looked there, how completely gentle he was yet he was unfathomably strong to push through all of the things that were causing him pain. Kurt closed his eyes until something stroked at his wrist in fluid patterns, looping in circles and tickling lightly up to his wrist.
Kurt slid open his eyes to find Blaine staring back. They were Blaine’s hands painting invisible patterns on his skin and for all it was new and wonderfully exciting to be touched in such a way, it felt oddly familiar.
“I meant what I said earlier about it being the right time for us to meet,” Kurt whispered, ducking to distract Blaine’s attention from watching their interlocking fingers, hands fumbling and feeling in shaky but graceful motion until Kurt was sure he was vibrating with emotion. Nothing had ever felt as amazing.
“From the day I met you, I think you shocked me. You were like this whirlwind with really incredible boots.”
“Prince boots,” Kurt laughed bashfully, face flushing. “I remember.”
“Well, you can imagine my surprise when the so-called nanny turned out to be... well, you. You were so unconventional and I didn’t know what to think but Bella trusted you so quickly and I was worried I was foolish for feeling the same.”
Kurt shuffled an inch closer, a thrill travelling the length of spine as Blaine’s hands toyed with the cuff of his sleep shirt.
“Why did you trust me? I mean, I was a stranger in your home with your sister. I must say, I was a little shocked by it.”
Blaine hummed under his breath as he thought for a second. Kurt took the opportunity to track the bow of his lips, the sloping curve of them that he wanted to trace with careful finger tips and chase with a kiss.
A kiss. Blaine wanted that.
Blaine wanted to kiss him. The very secret, very suppressed teenage girl inside him screamed into a pillow until Blaine’s words broke the silence.
“You were – Are you ok?”
Kurt blanched, nodding frantically. “I’m fine. I’m fine. Honestly. Just, um... this is a lot.” He was glowing red and terribly coy but it was unavoidable with Blaine so near.
Blaine blushed, averting his gaze for a moment. When he looked, the honesty in Blaine’s eyes was blazing. “You asked me why I trusted you from the beginning. You said something to Bella when we first met. You said ‘“your opinion of yourself is the most important’. The way you cared so quickly was strange to me. Nice but... strange. Those words were something I hadn’t heard in a long time.”
“It’s a mentality my Dad instilled into me. I matter and how I treat myself is the most important thing. He always said that once you can respect yourself and stay true to who you are then you can do anything. I always liked the idea that once you love yourself, someone will love you but even if you don’t manage it, then if you treat yourself with kindness then someone might just give you a helping hand.”
“Like you’ve done to me.”
“Oh Blaine,” Kurt sighed, “I didn’t do anything. You’ve done this all yourself.”
Blaine shook his head fiercely. “Kurt, you’ve allowed us into your home. You’ve listened to me talk. You’ve given advice and stood up for me. Without even realising you’ve helped me find moments where I can escape and forget about how tense and pressurised I feel most days. My most frequent emotion before you came along was anger. That’s not me. It’s not who I am and I – “
“Blaine,” Kurt soothed, a hand reaching out to press close to Blaine’s heart without a moment’s hesitation. “I spent most of my high school experience swirling in a haze of my own self loathing, self importance, misery, anger and frustration. I was a mess and coming here, I’ve only just started to figure myself out. Most of it wasn’t my fault, some of it was but what I’m trying to say is that its earth shattering when someone just listens and you don’t need to explain yourself. This is one of those times.”
Blaine swallowed noticeably and nodded, glancing down in a flurry of blinking lashes and wiped eyes. When he looked back up, he smiled. “This isn’t some saviour complex I’ve got where I’m only saying these things because you’re a bright light in the darkness or something else clichéd. I’m saying them because I don’t feel alone when I’m with you and that’s huge for me.” Kurt’s heart lurched at the cracks in Blaine’s voice, the smooth tone of it interrupted with lilts of emotion.
“That’s good to hear. I’m not great company right now but I’m working on it.”
Kurt chuckled, sliding his hand from Blaine’s chest to his lip where he allowed it to rest against the curve of his knee. “You’ve got enough to think about and you’re an idiot if you think you’re not good company. You’re the best company I’ve had in a long, long time, Blaine. You and Bella.”
“I just kept trying to find ways to spend more time with you. Excuses. I felt bad crashing your time with Bella but then you’d appear in crazy hats or you’d be doing awesome things like singing songs or teaching her languages and I’d just never want to leave.”
Kurt sighed and took delight in revelling in the way his stomach fluttered and swooped. The butterflies were aplenty and if the way Blaine kept having to look away was anything to go by, he was feeling it too.
Blaine was talking again, recounting little moments and explaining them because he felt he had to, because he was perpetually infused with a sense of politeness and duty. Kurt kept his focus on Blaine, nodding and shifting in sync as Blaine shuffled into a comfier position, his leg knocking Kurt’s for a brief moment, drawing him out of speech to courteously apologise and pat the spot of collision gently for a moment before launching back into his speech.
That was what did it. Nobody was like Blaine; for all his confusion and the latent issues he fought with, for all their meeting was about as unconventional as one could imagine, for all Kurt’s lack of romantic experience and scrambling to find some semblance of a life in New York was proving much more problematic than imagined, some things had gone right.
Spending many a night back in his old bedroom in high school wondering when he’d find someone to care for and who would care right back in abundance, the hope of a swooning romance had all felt like something fictional characters do, something to dream of but never to hope for in reality.
Kurt allowed his focus to slip down to watch Blaine’s lips curl into words but then he’d always look back up to Blaine’s eyes, watching them dance with his new found ability to be open about his feelings; everything about Blaine’s bashful confessions and sweetness was just intensified by his inner confidence and strength. He was so handsome, so real and human and flawed and... perfect.
Blaine suddenly stopped talking and it was difficult to know who moved first. They were so close before Kurt realised he was curled into towards Blaine, gazing and shaking with an effervescent mixture of joy and fear.
“I’m really not listening. Not this time,” Kurt admitted, words jittery.
Blaine’s expression softened in amusement, flooding with hope as Kurt felt tentative fingers at the palm of his hand and tried to pretend like he had a clue about how to act sultry and sexy and open. Nothing about it felt easy but it was as if he’d crumble upon moving even a millimeter away.
Blaine’s gaze slid lower to Kurt’s lips then back up again, eyes penny-wide and couched in affection and fear. “I, um, I –“
Kurt shuffled closer and smoothed his palm down Blaine’s cardigan, enjoying the warmth there and smiling, just a little.
It was enough.
Blaine mirrored the gesture and brought their looped hand to Kurt’s chest, pressing it there for a moment before slowly moving closer, their clasped hand clutched tight between them. Kurt gasped, every nerve ending tingling and hot as Blaine’s face began to swim out of focus; the image of honey-coloured eyes was the last thing Kurt memorised before lips touched his in a faint, cautious kiss.
He was shaking. Every part of him was trembling but their hands were knotted together and somehow it felt important. He breathed deep and kissed back gently, squeezing Blaine’s fingers and shuddering as they slid free, running the length of Kurt’s before slipping down to rest at his hip.
Like being doused in a bucket of iced water, Kurt jumped back into the arm of couch, hissing in pain, as Blaine fumbled to sit straight.
“Bella?” Kurt craned his neck to find her rubbing her eyes at Rachel’s door, her pyjama top lopsided and hair a wild mass of corkscrew curls.
“Can I have a glass of water?” she croaked out. “Where’s Bee?”
“I’m here, Bells. I’m right here.” Blaine threw Kurt an apologetic look but it didn’t matter because as Bella padded over to the couch and climbed into Blaine’s lap, Kurt backed into the kitchen and their eye contact didn’t break for a second. Kurt laughed to himself, rounding the corner playfully with wink added for good measure just as he disappeared.
His entire body was thrumming with energy and emotion. To calm himself, he focused on the cool touch of the metal tap and the rush of water through the pipes. By the time he returned to Blaine and Bella, his hands had almost stopped shaking.
Until Blaine’s lips curved into a smile into Bella’s hair while she sipped, that was. “You ok, Bells?” Blaine asked.
She hummed into the glass, licking her lips. “Rachel read to me. She’s funny at the voices of the characters.”
Kurt rolled his eyes. “At least her acting classes are good for something.”
“Could you not sleep?” Blaine asked, leaning down to look into her face. She screwed up her nose and buried her head into Blaine’s chest, hands clinging to the folds of his cardigan. Instantly, Blaine’s arms circled her back and she crawled into his lap, a tangle of limbs and dark curls.
Kurt caught Blaine’s attention over her head and the pain written all over his face cut deep into Kurt’s heart.
“Bella, would you like me to put a movie on? Something you like? Maybe you could sleep out here with Blaine.”
Blaine pressed a kiss to her hair as she peeled her face from his arm and nodded. “Can I?”
“Of course you can, honey. How about you go over and pick one from the pile and I’ll dim the lights so if you feel sleepy then you can just leave the movie playing.” He turned to Blaine. “The delinquents upstairs can suck it to be honest. They’ve kept me up more nights than I can count so it’s payback time.”
“Thank you,” Blaine mouthed as Bella jumped from his knee and flopped onto the floor by the television before turning to Kurt. He seemed a little more reserved, his focus darting to and from Bella, whispering, “I, um – “.
“Blaine, it’s fine. Honestly.” Kurt reached out and covered Blaine’s hand with his own for a second, hoping it’d explain enough for now.
They had time. No regrets.
Blaine’s radiant smile in response quelled any worries and he tucked his feet up and under him, stroking a little at Kurt’s hand before pulling his cardigan to him and rearranging the pillows to accommodate Bella.
Kurt moved to the entrance to the kitchen. “Would you like a top up of water too? It’s three in the morning. Let’s go wild.”
Blaine’s eyes were sparkling. “It was my intention.”
Kurt slapped his hand to his face to his the enormous smile that broke out quickly. He screwed his eyes closed and when he opened them again, Blaine’s lips were pursed together to hold back a smirk.
“Look at you on my couch being all...” There were no words it seemed.
“Being all, what?” Blaine raised his eyebrows.
“You. Ok? Being you. Now do you want water or not?”It was snappy and sharp but if the way Blaine mooned back, smiling hugely with a nod, was anything to go by, he loved the fact they could indulge in a little more flirting than was previously acceptable now.
“That would be great. Thank you.”
Returning through the door with three glasses held precariously in his grasp, Kurt found Bella holding out a DVD case with enthusiasm. Kurt cocked an eyebrow. “Mary Poppins?” A glance at Blaine and his affectionate shrug and Kurt sighed happily, setting up the movie in a flash. “What made you pick this movie, Bella?” he asked, snuggling back onto the sofa.
She slid off Blaine’s lap and began to focus on the stitching at the collar of the sweater Kurt had quickly pulled on before making their drinks. It was a deep blue trimmed in crimson and gold with a thick cable knit collar. “I like the songs and she’s like you.”
“Practically perfect in every way? Well that’s very sweet of – “
“No,” Bella giggled, swatting at his chest and collapsing against his arm. “Because she makes the sad people in the family happy again.”
Kurt’s eyes filled in a second, throat thickening as he pressed his lips together. All was quiet for a moment with just the sound of Bella’s gentle sips audible of the beat of Kurt’s heart. “Sad people?” he asked, too shaken to look into Blaine’s eyes.
“Me and Bee, silly,” she added matter of factly, her attention swallowed by the overture. Kurt forced a smile, his lips trembling as he fought the escaping tears. Kurt blinked rapidly, choked and overwhelmed when he felt something tender and warm against his arm. Once a little more composed, Blaine’s fingertips were running in smooth lines along his wrist.
He couldn’t look into Blaine’s eyes. Instead, he took a steadying breath and felt for Blaine’s hand, squeezing hard when he found it. The contact was enough to take his breath away all over again so he cuddled Bella close and buried his nose in her hair, letting the swell of violins wash over him.
I’m so terribly sorry for the wait. In my defence, when I began writing this story, I had quite a large amount of free time on the horizon for an extended period of time. Up until a few weeks ago, that was always going to be the case until, as always, life threw me a curve ball and I have some pretty important imminent plans for the next 2 weeks. As of April 11th, my schedule clears up again.
I can only promise updates until then whenever I can managed them. There will be another before then of course but I promise it’ll all be finished quickly once I have a spare moment to myself!
Kurt/Blaine still have PLENTY of problems and, in a way, this is another thing to complicated things but it’s in a GOOD way : ) I won’t hint at what is to happen with them but it makes me happy that they have these little moment of quiet to themselves in a world of MESSINESS and COMPLEXITY.
I like that they’re still honest and make things a lot simpler for themselves when the world around them is so difficult to navigate.
I listened to Stay Awake from the Mary Poppins soundtrack and Tomorrow Will Be Kinder by The Secret Sisters (Hunger Games Soundtrack) for this chapter ... both songs make me cry.