Title: Imagine Me and You
Rating: PG-13 (rating varies by chapter, up to NC-17)
Pairings: Kurt/Blaine, Kurt/Jesse St. James, implied Puck/Quinn and Santana/Brittany
Warnings: Temporary and stormy St. Hummel and minor character death
Word Count: ~4,200 (~27,900 total so far)
Summary: When Kurt was little, Blaine had promised him that he would be there for him always, but forces he couldn't control pulled them apart. But then, years later, fate brought them together again...
A/N: Based off of and inspired by the beautiful book Sundays at Tiffany's by James Patterson. This would certainly not be what it is had it not been for my wonderful betas vivianagleek, hengilas, and ccmskatechick-- all of whom reassured me that this was, in fact, good. So I owe them a lot for that. Any Glee or Sundays at Tiffany's content I do not claim to own.
(Also on S&C)
(Go back to the beginning)
Blaine was waiting outside my building for me the next morning, just like he used to, so many years ago.
And he looked real to me. Solid, clear. Not a hallucination. I was pretty sure.
“Good morning, Kurt,” he said, still looking slightly sleepy and adorable. “Did you sleep well?”
“Slept like a log,” I lied. “Yourself?”
“The same,” he said, smiling a little.
I wasn’t sure where we were headed, but we fell into step with each other as we walked down the sidewalk. Just like we used to when he would walk me to the bus stop for school. Was he here to watch over me again? What for? And why didn’t Blaine have any answers? He used to know everything when I was a kid. He never seemed unsure or nervous. Seeing him like this now made him seem all the more human.
It looked as if the string of good weather we had enjoyed had come to an end that morning. It was chilly and the sky was overcast, just threatening to rain.
We chit-chatted pleasantly, and for the first time I felt as if something tenuous was between us. I told him about my conversation with Mercedes the night before, offhandedly joking about her wish that I design her dress and Blaine’s eyes widened.
“I don’t have the time,” I brushed the question off, feeling slightly bad. I expected him to push me, but he just nodded.
Suddenly, there was a crack of thunder and the sky burst open, pouring rain.
“Come on!” Blaine shouted over the din, grabbing my hand and pulling us into a nearby Starbucks. We burst into the shop, thankfully only slightly worse for wear. We looked at each other, and just started laughing. I immediately felt any tension between us just melt away.
“So, while we’re here… do you want something? My treat,” Blaine offered, shaking his head a little and flinging droplets of water around him.
I checked the weather outside. It just looked like a flash downpour. With any luck, we could wait it out. “All right,” I agreed.
Blaine stepped up to the counter and ordered a medium drip and my usual before I could even tell him what it was.
“You know my coffee order?”
Blaine hesitated as he handed some cash over to the barista behind the counter. “Of course I do.”
He was just full of surprises. We sat down with our coffees and the muffins Blaine had ordered but I found I wasn’t terribly hungry, so I picked at my muffin more than ate any of it. I listened as Blaine told me more about his boxing adventures.
By the time we were finished, I had been right about the weather. It was still cloudy but not raining anymore, thankfully. Blaine paused at the corner, checking his watch.
“I’m keeping you from work. I’m sorry that I keep doing that,” he said as he shifted on his feet.
“Don’t worry about it,” I said. Once again, we found ourselves gravitating toward each other. I leaned in, inwardly cheering that it was finally going to happen. Just a little bit closer.
“I’ll see you later,” Blaine pulled back, his face blank.
“Okay,” except it wasn’t. I was not about to let him get away this time. So I clutched his arm and pulled him back toward me, then kissed him—on the cheek. Just from that quick contact I could smell the dampness from the rain and a cologne I couldn’t place but would now would forever associate as Blaine.
He was looking at me, slightly bewildered now, but he didn’t look unhappy.
“I’ll see you later, Blaine. Miss you already.”
“I—I miss you already, too,” he said, and stood there as I hailed a cab and drove off to work.
Inside the taxi, I couldn’t stop grinning. I was happy.
Blaine was actually really happy, in a tortured sort of way.
He didn’t know who else to talk to about this, so while Kurt was at work, he got together with a bunch of his best friends and told them everything that had happened. “He remembers everything. The afternoons spent at Junior’s, our games, that horrific day I had to leave him, everything.”
Everyone in the group was shocked, they had never heard of anything like it. “Just be careful, Blaine,” said Wes, who Blaine considered to be his closest friend of the group. “For both your sakes. There is a reason they forget us. That’s how it has always been. There’s something strange happening here.”
“You think?” Blaine said sarcastically.
It was almost six when Blaine showed up at Kurt’s office, just like he had promised. He said hello again to the receptionist, Lauren.
“I don’t know if he’s expecting me,” Blaine told her.
She laughed. “Oh, he’s expecting you. Keeps checking in down here to see if you’d turned up.” She proceeded to call Kurt and not too long after, he appeared smiling that brilliant smile.
“Apparently even when I’m not here I distract you,” Blaine said to him.
“I really don’t mind,” Kurt said.
“You could distract me,” Lauren cut in, smiling wickedly. Blaine was about to answer but found himself being dragged out of the building by Kurt.
It had started raining again, but Blaine was prepared this time with a large umbrella that they both huddled under as they headed toward Bella Vita Pizzeria, yet another place Blaine swore by.
“Have you been to every food establishment in the city?” Kurt asked as they ate and talked as if it had been months since they had last seen each other, instead of just hours.
“I like food,” Blaine shrugged cheerfully, as he munched on a slice of pizza.
“You seem to like everything,” Kurt commented, and Blaine grinned at him. “So what else do you do, other than eat? What are your interests?”
“Um,” Blaine paused. He wasn’t often asked questions about himself; most of the time he listened as other people talked. “I like football,” he said. “70s music. The Discovery Channel. Leonid Afremov. Katy Perry.”
Kurt laughed. “So… you do like everything.”
“And what did you do today while I slaved away at work?” Kurt asked.
“I met some friends,” he told him. “Friends who are um, in the same line of work. I went bicycling. I took a nap.”
“Thrilling,” Kurt quipped.
“Hey now, I’m on vacation,” Blaine grinned. Were they flirting? They were definitely flirting. And for that matter, was this a date? It felt like one. Blaine wasn’t sure if he wanted it to be or not.
We talked for a while more and it struck me that I had been with Jesse for so long, and we had never talked this much. Blaine and I never seemed to run out of things to talk about. By the time the waiter came to take our plates, I realized that I still had quite a bit left on mine but chalked it up to being so distracted by my conversation with Blaine, I mustn’t have been all that hungry.
After lunch, we headed down on 9th Avenue, arm in arm. The rain had stopped and I was feeling so giddy that I couldn’t stop twirling the umbrella in my hand. I started humming, then singing aloud, Singin’ in the Rain, and I nudged Blaine to join me.
For a brief moment we embarrassed ourselves on the slick sidewalk among a few passersby, our voices surprisingly blending well as we sang, “The suuun’s in my heeeart, and I’m ready for looooove…”
We finished with a flourish, laughing at ourselves and each other. “I can’t believe I did that,” I said, shaking my head in disbelief.
“It was adorable,” Blaine looked at me. “And you have a wonderful voice.”
Things like that made me fall for him even more. I looked up, and saw that we weren’t far from my apartment building. How did we get here so fast? Time always just flew when I was with him; I wanted to slow it down, memorize every part.
We continued walking, and it was quiet between us for a change. Could I ask him up this time? God, I really wanted to.
I was trying to gather up the nerve when I realized we had stopped and Blaine was looking up at me and before I knew what was happening he was leaning up and wrapping his arms around my neck.
I could swear I felt my heart stop the moment his lips touched mine. Then it sped up like a jackhammer. Our chests were touching and I was sure he could feel it. There was a full circus in my stomach and my brain couldn’t seem to process anything other than the overwhelming thought of Blaine.
Finally we broke apart and I took a breath to say something but—
Then we were kissing again. Blaine was holding me tight and I felt like he was enveloping me completely.
We kept inching apart, only to start kissing again and again. We stood there, clinging to each other, not speaking and just breathing each other in. I could kiss him forever, the rest of my life, and never get tired of it. I was feeling light headed and didn’t want it to stop. Not ever.
As I made my way up to my landing after my date with Blaine—and by now I definitely knew it had been a date—I didn’t really have time to process anything that had just happened because my dad was hanging outside my door.
“Dad?” I asked, as I walked toward him.
“Kurt,” he greeted me, and I noted that he didn’t use my nickname. “I was hoping I wouldn’t have to wait too long.”
As I opened my door to let us in I asked, “What are you doing here?”
“I just came to talk. After yesterday it was pretty clear that we haven’t done enough of that lately.”
“We talk plenty,” I said, tossing my things down on the counter and ignoring the blinking red light of my answering machine by the phone.
“Not like we used to,” Burt loitered in the hallway before making his way into the living area.
“Oh, okay. Uh, do you want something to drink?”
“Water’s fine,” he said. I poured us two glasses and sat across from him on the big ottoman in the middle of the room.
He took a big gulp before getting down to business. “Look, Kurt, I don’t know what’s been going on with you exactly but something’s changed.”
I opened my mouth to protest but my dad held a hand up to silence me. “Hear me out. It’s obvious that you have been stressing lately and you’ve been acting differently. I just—”
He exhaled loudly, rubbing his hands over his face. “I’m not going to be around forever, you know? And when I’m gone, the company will be yours. But I want that to be what you want. I want you to be happy. I want you to do things that make you happy.”
This, I was not expecting. It was out of nowhere. “I am happy,” I said truthfully. After today, I was happy for the first time in a long time. “What do you mean by all of this?”
“Just, take it easy Kurt. I want you to take care of yourself, like you and Carole take care of me,” he chuckled a little ruefully. “Stress isn’t healthy.” He looked at me long and hard. “Think about it.”
After that, he got to his feet and gave me a hug. As he walked out the door he said, “Carole still wants you to come over for dinner sometime, kiddo.”
And I was left completely confused.
The next morning, I was out the door in record time. I was hoping and praying that Blaine would be waiting outside to join me for breakfast. As I made my way down I was crossing my fingers desperately. Please, please let him be downstairs. Don’t let him have vanished from my life again.
I strode onto the street, into a chilly, but clear day and…
I felt my heart sink into my stomach. Maybe he was late? But no, Blaine was never late. He had never been when I was little.
I hailed a cab and reluctantly climbed in. As we drove to the office, I couldn’t stop myself from scanning the sidewalks we passed for Blaine’s face, for that head of curls. But he wasn’t anywhere.
Had he just disappeared again? If that was the case, I wasn’t sure how I was going to handle it this time.
What was the point of coming back if he was just going to leave me again?
When I walked into my office, I was still slightly distracted and almost bumped bodily into Emma as she blocked me from entering my office.
“Um, in your office,” she said in a small voice. “There’s a… surprise.”
Because I was so in the mood for surprises. I narrowed my eyes and nodded at her, and braced myself for whatever was holed up behind my door.
When I opened it, it was to find Jesse sitting behind my desk, going through my messages and mail.
“Do you want to check my cell phone next?” I said, tossing the thing onto the desk and dropping my bag onto the chair across from it.
He leaped to his feet. “Kurt!” He moved around the desk and hugged me, completely ignoring my stiffness and then he moved in for a kiss. I scowled, and lifted my hand between us to push him off of me.
He didn’t look phased. “I’m not mad at you anymore.”
“Oh, wow. Wish I could say the same. You can go now.”
“I see you made it back from Brooklyn okay.”
He waited to see my reaction to his little quip, and unfortunately for him all he got was a look I genuinely wished could cause physical pain. I ignored him and sat behind my desk to start sorting my messages. When he didn’t move, I sighed. “Why are you here, Jesse?”
“Because you’re my boyfriend. And boyfriends forgive each other,” he said.
No. “We’re not anything and I have a lot of work to do. Please go.”
Then his demeanor changed and he set his palms on my desk, leaning forward. “Look, Kurt, I need this movie role. It could be my big break into the business!” He exhaled dramatically. “Are you happy now? I’ve laid it out there; I’m vulnerable.” He said the last sentence with a pathetic tone in his voice that I was not going to fall for.
“Jesse, I wasn’t lying to you before just to be cruel. I really don’t think you’re good for the part.”
“I am, though!” He shouted, startling me. “You think that just because you’re the writer and have all these connections that you can just toy with me like that? Well, fuck you.”
That was it. I stood up and pointed at the door. “Get out.”
“No. Admit it, Kurt. You need me. You need me for this part. No one else will go for the overly-sentimental crap.”
“Get out, Jesse,” I gritted my teeth, unable to believe what was happening.
He stood his ground, eyes blazing and breathing heavy. “Not until you admit that you need me.”
“Fine!” I shouted. “Then I’ll leave!” I grabbed my bag and my coat as I flew past him, throwing open the door and practically flying down the hall without a backward glance.
“Have you lost it?!” I heard Jesse shout from my office.
As I was about to pass my dad’s office, he came out, looking confused as to what was going on. “What’s happening? Kurt?”
I couldn’t speak without crying, though, so I just shook my head and left.
That morning, Blaine had jogged over to the Van Dam diner to have breakfast and say hello to Quinn, maybe make sure she was doing okay, but he found that she wasn’t there. He still stayed to have his usual breakfast, instead concentrating all his efforts on trying to figure out what was happening with Kurt. Like the very possible idea that he might be falling in love with Kurt Hummel.
According to all of the movies he had watched and books he had read, he had all the classic symptoms: sweaty palms, a racing heartbeat, daydreams, and a happy, floaty feeling that permeated every cell of his body. After the night before, he just had to see Kurt again. And he had to kiss him again. Blaine was already planning on meeting him at his office at the end of the day. There was nothing that could keep him away, even if it’s the last thing he really should do.
When he got home, he ran into Quinn, with Beth in tow—and they were leaving his building.
Blaine immediately felt wary. She was crying, and Beth looked dejected as well. That was something that Blaine couldn’t handle; he’d seen that look on plenty of his kids in the past.
“Quinn,” he said in greeting, then immediately crouched down to talk to the little girl. “Hi, darling. Your name is Beth, right? Is everything okay?”
“My mommy’s sad,” she said. “She broke up with her boyfriend.”
“Did she? But your mommy is a very strong woman, though. I think she’ll be all right. Are you okay?”
“Mhmm,” she nodded. “I talked to my friend Sugar about it.” Then she whispered, “She’s invisible, you know.”
Blaine smiled. “Ah, I do know, actually,” he said, since Sugar was standing right there, looking worried. She wiggled her fingers at him in greeting. “How are you, Sugar?”
She made a so-so gesture with her hand and sighed.
Blaine straightened up. “Quinn, you’re a wonderful person, you know that? But Puck… he’s… He’s not ready for someone like you.”
“Thanks, Blaine,” she said. “It’s my fault for not seeing that sooner.”
Then she picked up Beth and started hurrying down the walk. “Puck really is a dick,” Sugar muttered to Blaine as she followed.
Blaine watched them walk away for a moment, then ran up the four flights and pounded on Puck’s door. He didn’t know what he was doing, but he was going to do something. He rarely, if ever, got this frustrated and mad at someone. Blaine wanted to know what had happened during Puck’s childhood to make him the way he was now. This was the exact thing he tried to help children not to do when they grew up. But it was too late for Puck and he had hurt how many people?
When the door opened, Puck was grinning but when he saw the look on Blaine’s face it faltered a little.
“Blaine! What’s up?”
Blaine stuck his finger in Puck’s face. “I’m judging you, Puck. Consider yourself judged. You have it all wrong. There is nothing more beautiful, more amazing than love in this world and you just use it to be selfish. You need to find somebody to love you and try your damndest to love her back, the best you can. I thought it might be Quinn, but apparently not.” Blaine took a deep breath. “Just—you’ve got it wrong, Puck.”
And with that, he ran back down the stairs. He needed to see Kurt—now.
When he reached Kurt’s office building, he stopped at Lauren’s desk.
“I’m going to go up to see Kurt,” he told her and started to walk toward the elevators.
“He’s not here!” She called after him, and he turned around. “I thought he might have gone to see you. He left about half an hour ago.”
“Where’d he go? Did something happen?”
“Talk around here is that he got into a fight with that idiot boyfriend of his—” Blaine wanted to interrupt, Jesse was not Kurt’s boyfriend, but she continued. “All I saw is he stormed out of here in something of a fury.”
She barely finished her story when one of the elevators opened and Burt strolled out, practically pushing Jesse into the lobby. Blaine had seen Burt be intimidating before, but this was another level. Jesse looked terrified.
“Now I don’t want to see your face around here again, I don’t care what Margaret says. Got that?” Burt crossed his arms and stared down at Jesse. Jesse nodded meekly and brushed off his shirt as he watched Burt get back into the elevator.
Then Blaine watched with shock as Jesse strode over to Lauren’s desk, practically shoving Blaine aside, and told her, “Please leave a message for Mrs. Bell that we need to have an emergency meeting.”
Lauren looked torn. Blaine couldn’t help but step in, “Excuse me, but I’m pretty sure he just told you to leave.”
Jesse turned to face Blaine and Blaine could see that he was sort of classically handsome—or he would be, if his face wasn’t contorted with contempt. “I’m sorry? Who are you?”
“I’m Blaine,” Blaine straightened himself, trying to make himself taller. “I’m a friend of Kurt’s.”
Jesse’s face changed slightly as he very conspicuously proceeded to look Blaine up and down. “Has he been cheating on me? Or worse, are you the actor they hired for my part?”
“Um, no and no. Besides, you two would have to be dating in order for him to have cheated on you.” He did not know where the words were coming from, but he didn’t have time to think about that as Jesse dove for him. On reflex, Blaine’s fist collided with Jesse’s stomach and he doubled over.
Thank goodness for boxing.
“I’m sorry,” Blaine said, looking down at him then looking around as he saw security closing in. “Well, I’m really kind of not. You’ve been asking for that, Jesse. That was for Kurt.” And he strode out of the building to continue his search for Kurt.
When he reached the street, he found that he was shaking. He didn’t know whether it was from the anxiety or adrenaline or fear rushing through his veins, but he didn’t like it; wasn’t used to it.
Blaine thought about where he could find Kurt. He thought about calling him but he didn’t have a cell phone and even if he did, he had never thought to ask for Kurt’s number because he didn’t have a phone. And there was no point in stopping by his apartment, he figured. Kurt wouldn’t go where people would easily find him.
Blaine passed a church as he walked north toward Central Park and he stopped for a moment. He had never considered himself religious; he didn’t really know what to believe. He really doubted he would find Kurt in a church, but he pulled open one of the doors and entered anyway. Maybe a quiet place to think would be the key to helping to find Kurt.
He took a seat at a pew near the back and suddenly he felt so… human, sitting there. He wasn’t sure if he liked it. But he also wasn’t sure if he didn’t.
He wanted answers, needed answers, and as he looked around the church he began to wonder if he would find them here. He had always liked the architecture and art of churches—all the arches and stained glass windows, mosaics and tapestries, candles and halls filled with song.
Blaine clasped his hands in front of him just as his eyes fell on the stained glass mosaic window over the altar, light streaming through.
Then, to his astonishment, Blaine felt a tear fall down his cheek. “What is happening to me?” he said aloud. First he cut himself shaving, then had snapped at two different guys (actually punching one of them!) and now he was crying?
In fact, Blaine felt a heavy, overwhelming sorrow settle in his chest. That was something else he had never experienced. Huh, he thought to himself. He found he didn’t like it.
Blaine wanted it to stop—the worry, the anxiety, the heartache. He snapped his fingers, but nothing happened. He couldn’t control this, could he? Blaine felt lost.
Blaine wiped the tear away from his face and stared at the wetness on his fingers. Then, it just came to him—a knowledge, as if he had realized something. But he instantly wished he could forget.
That sort of feeling of knowing always came before a new assignment, and he was experiencing that now. He felt he knew why he was in New York this time and why he had run into Kurt Hummel.
No, but that can’t be it.
But it made sense, didn’t it? This was just the last piece to the puzzle finally falling into place. It explained perfectly why he had found Kurt.
Blaine took another look at the window before slowly and quietly getting up to leave the church. He still didn’t know if any of this made him believe in a higher being, but it did confirm that he was there, in this world, for a reason.
So many years ago, Blaine had helped Kurt find his way in life until he’d had to leave him that dreadful night of his eleventh birthday. And now, he was the one who was going to bring Kurt out of life, wasn’t he? Blaine understood now.
Kurt was going to die. That was why Blaine was in New York.