Blaine was sitting on the end of his bed, running a towel over his freshly washed hair. He couldn’t stop staring at the Nationals trophy that he and Sam had just rescued from Dalton. Something just didn’t seem right. As much as he wanted to believe the plan the two of them had come up with was what was behind things going so smoothly, Blaine knew it wasn’t. It had been almost too easy to get it back, like Clarington had just rolled over and said “Here, it’s all yours.” And what the hell was going on with Sebastian? Yes, he had said all of that crap about turning over a new leaf and being nice, but there was something else. Granted, he hadn’t seen the former Warbler captain since Regionals, but the boy he had seen the last couple of days was not the Sebastian Smythe he knew. Maybe his concerns about Sebastian were intertwining with his concerns about the trophy rescue.
“Dude, you weren’t lying about the curls, but they’re not as bad as last year’s prom” Sam had come out from the bathroom after changing out of his Blonde Chameleon costume “but is there something wrong with the trophy? You’re staring at it awfully hard.”
“No, there’s nothing. It’s just…I don’t know. Did that almost seem too…?”
“Easy? Yeah, I noticed that too” Sam agreed “Maybe it’s because Britt calls Dalton Hogwarts, and it’s not like I was expecting a giant three-headed dog to be guarding the trophy or anything, but yeah, I expected…well, more. What’s going on Blaine?”
“I don’t know. Something is just off” after seeing the concern on the face of the boy who was rapidly becoming a very good friend, he felt the need to add “And no, this has nothing to do with my almost returning to Dalton.”
“Ok, I believe you” and Sam did because he was having the same feelings about what had happened. He sat down next to Blaine and began to stare at the trophy as well “And what’s up with Sebastian?”
“Thank you! You saw it too?”
“Hell yeah, that person was not the Sebastian Smythe we knew last year. I mean it was like that Clarington dude had his hand up his ass and was controlling him like a puppet” The moment the words came out of his mouth a look of panic came across Sam’s face “Sorry man, I meant…you know, this has nothing with Sebastian being gay and didn’t you say that Clarington said that he wasn’t even remotely bi-curious?”
Blaine tried not to laugh as Sam tripped all over himself. He knew Sam wasn’t a homophobe and was trying to be “politically correct” so he didn’t take offence. He only hoped that someday soon Sam wouldn’t feel that he had to watch what he said around him so much “Sam, stop. I know what you mean. It’s ok and I agree with your comparison. There’s another thing I have been thinking about as well. Clarington said that Dalton brought him in because his military school glee club won their Regionals and earned a Presidential Honor. If they won their Regionals, shouldn’t they have competed at Nationals? And is that Presidential Honor even a thing?”
“I hadn’t thought of that, but yeah, that just doesn’t sound right either. What do you want to do?”
“I wish we just had more information” Blaine sighed as all of their questions really had him concerned.
“Well, I heard Marley and Unique talking and evidently Unique is some sort of computer genius” Sam offered “Maybe she could help.”
Blaine thought about it but even though Sam’s idea was a good one he knew they needed something more. He got up, walked over to his desk and grabbed his wallet, pulling out a business card “That’s a great idea but I don’t want to get any other New Directions members involved. Plus, I think this will get us answers faster” He picked-up his phone and dialed the number on the card.
“Hello Mr. Motta? This is Blaine Anderson” Sam’s eyes flew open. Why would Blaine be calling Sugar’s dad? Especially considering all of the rumors about the man. By the time Sam’s shock wore off it was obvious that he had missed most of the conversation. “Thank you Mr. Motta, I mean Robert. Yes, I’ll be waiting. Talk to you soon.” Once Blaine ended the call he immediately said “I can explain.”
“You’re a Made Man in the Motta Crime Family?” Sam asked half-jokingly.
“Ha ha” Blaine retorted, even knowing that there was possibly a sliver of truth in Sam’s question “Do you remember last year at Nationals when both Sugar and I sang in the chorus of Rachel’s solo?”
“Yeah, that shocked a lot of us. Her, not you of course.”
“I had been secretly giving her voice lessons pretty much since she came over from the Trouble Tones.”
That piece of information caused Sam to have an epiphany “That’s how she got you to be the surprise guest at her Valentine’s party.”
“Yes, anyway there wasn’t a lot I could do but I got her to where she could carry a harmony within a small group. When Mr. Schue gave her the part in the chorus she was so happy that her father told me if I ever needed anything to call.” Sam’s eyes flew open once again, but Blaine stopped that train of thought “Robert, Mr. Motta, is a lawyer. He does have a few other side businesses as well, one of them being a private detective agency. He’s got his guys looking into Clarington for me. He said that hopefully he would have some information in a couple of hours.”
“What are you going to do?”
Blaine let out a chuckle because he literally had not thought that far ahead “I don’t know. I guess I’ll figure out my next step when I get the information from Robert.”
“You know I’ll help you with anything you want to do.”
“I know Sam, but I have a feeling this is going to be much more involved than just getting the trophy back. We’re competing against the Warblers at Sectionals in three weeks and I think anything that Robert comes up with would be better coming from me than from “the New Directions”.”
As much as Sam didn’t want to admit it, he knew what Blaine was saying made sense “Ok…for now, but if you need me you have to promise that you’ll ask.” After Blaine agreed, Sam got up and grabbed his bag “Ok, I’ve got to get back to the Hudmel’s. Are you sure you’re ok?”
“I will be once I hear from Robert. Thanks for everything you did for me today Sam. I wish there was a way to convince Finn to let us do Heroes at Sectionals.”
“I know! That would be so much better than…”
Blaine put up his hand to stop him “Don’t even say it. Just…don’t.”
Two hours later, Blaine found himself back staring at the trophy. He had just gotten off the phone with Robert and was shaken by what he had been told. Robert had not been concerned with what they had been able to find on Clarington, it was what they couldn’t find that was sending up red-flags. He then told Blaine that even though there probably wouldn’t be any answers until the next day, Blaine needed to think of someone he could trust with whatever they found out. Robert didn’t believe that that Clarington had been able to get himself into Dalton without at least some assistance from the inside, and most likely that assistance was from somewhere in the administration. Blaine reassured him that he knew someone and Robert promised to call him back before school even if there was no new information.
The minute he had hung up, Blaine texted Wes Montgomery since Wes’ dad was on Dalton’s Board of Governors. Wes had been the one person from his Dalton past that Blaine had not cut out of his life. Even though Wes had been pissed when Blaine transferred to McKinley, he had never felt abandoned like the others had.
Abandoned. “Holy fucking shit!” Blaine yelled out into his empty room. He had abandoned the Warblers in much of the same fashion that Kurt abandoned him. He had gone to McKinley and made a few attempts to keep in touch like inviting them to West Side Story but eventually he stopped. Hell, the Warblers had come and supported him at Sectionals and the only thing he did for them was tell Sebastian “Hey, congrats on the win” in passing. No wonder they had been so pissed at him that they agreed to the whole Slushie plan.
Now Blaine really had to talk to them. How could he have been so blind? He knew how, he had been looking at the world through Kurt colored glasses. Fuck! There was no way the guys were going to talk to him since he was pretty sure they all knew about the “No thanks” note by now. Fuck! Blaine started running his fingers through his hair in frustration. The action lifted his head back and broke his focus on the trophy. When he adjusted his gaze, he was now looking at the top shelf of his bookcase where all of his comic memorabilia was. Seeing this instantaneously brought an idea to mind, although it was really out there. He ran to his desk drawer and rummaged around for something he had put away the year before. A burner phone. Knowing the battery would obviously be dead, he let out a cheer when he found the charger right away. Even being on a direct electrical charge it took the phone a couple of minutes to power on. Ignoring the over 2,500 missed texts and 1,200 missed calls he quickly put in the three names he was looking for and sent a group text.
Out building 27. One hour. This is not a drill.
Blaine grabbed his keys and headed out the door, leaving the phone behind on the charger. He didn’t want to give those he had texted the chance to tell him no, even though by rule they couldn’t. At least he hoped that was still the case.
Light traffic allowed him to reach his destination much faster than he anticipated and he was relieved to see those that he had texted were already there. They just didn’t look very happy.
“Thank you for coming. I wasn’t sure that you would” Blaine admitted.
“Well, if Blaine would have texted we probably wouldn’t have, but since you did we didn’t have much of a choice now did we?” Jeff asked.
Oh yeah, this wasn’t going to be easy.
“Just tell us what you want” Nick’s tone demonstrated that his attitude was not much different than his blonde friend’s.
“You have anything you want to add Thad?” Blaine thought it would be better if he could assess how all three of them felt prior to getting started. When Thad refused to say anything, he got his message loud and clear “Fine, just tell me what the fuck is going on guys.”
“None of your business anymore” Jeff told him.
“Yeah, No thanks” Nick was quick to bring up, while Thad remained silent.
Blaine took a deep breath and just let it all out “Ok, sure, I said No thanks, but when I got home I couldn’t shake the feeling that something wasn’t right. Sam thought so too. It was almost too easy to get the trophy back. Clarington seemed to have put an awful lot of work into his plan for that to happen. It couldn’t have been an oversight. Then, Sam and I really got talking and began to question Clarington’s entire story. If his military school won their Regionals with Presidential Honors, why weren’t they at Nationals? So, I called in a favor and have a private detective looking into his story.”
“You did what!?!” the three Warblers yelled back. Well, at least Thad was talking to him now.
“Blaine, you can’t do this” Nick almost pleaded, which only ratcheted Blaine’s anxiety higher “And Sam knows? You have to keep him out of this.”
That last comment was the final straw for Blaine “What the fuck is going on? NOW!”
“We don’t know for sure” Jeff admitted in defeat “Hunter is scary Blaine. Like psycho scary, but the Head Master brought him in and after everything that happened with you last year, it’s like he’s had it out for the Warblers. It was our idea to try to get you to come back. We thought if we showed how we had worked things out with the New Directions everything could get back to normal.”
“What the hell are you talking about?” Blaine was completely confused, and quite frankly, a little angry “The Head Master said there was nothing he could do to Sebastian because there was no proof and when did the Warblers and new Directions make nice? When I shook Sebastian’s hand at Regionals?”
“Ok, now what the hell are you talking about?” It appeared that Thad finally had something to say and he was MORE than a little angry “Sebastian turned himself in to the Head Master the next morning. He took all of the blame even though the rocks salt Slushie idea was mine and the rest of us talked him into doing it. We were still pissed that you left us for Hummel of all people.”
Blaine sat down on the ground before his knees gave out “He turned himself in? He took all of the blame? The Head Master knew?”
Jeff and Nick realized what was going on with Blaine, but Thad sure didn’t “Yeah, so Hummel and that Santana chick wasted their time getting that confession. I mean, they went through all of that for you to turn around and give the tape back to Sebastian. What the fuck, Blaine?”
Nick pushed Thad away “Shut the fuck up, Thad! Look at him. He obviously didn’t know.” Thad finally calmed down enough to realize what had happened. He wanted to say something, but what?
Jeff sat down on the ground across from Blaine “Blaine, you didn’t tell Kurt to give the tape to Sebastian, did you?”
When Blaine lifted his head, none of the three other boys were able to tell if his tears were from being sad, or from being really, really pissed off “I never knew there was a tape.”
“Holy fuck! I knew I never liked that asshole” Thad had always had a thing against Kurt since the whole “You mock us sir” incident. He and Nick sat next to Jeff and waited for Blaine to take the lead on what happened next.
Blaine took cleansing breaths to calm his nerves and stop his tears, which definitely were not from sadness “He knew how I felt about not having quote/unquote proof of what happened. He knew it! It’s not like I would have used it, but after what happened at Sadie Hawkins and no one being punished because there was no proof, I needed it, you know. He took that away from me. God, after all that I did for him. That I did to protect him. From the moment I met him, he was just so lost and broken, I couldn’t let what happened to me happen to him, you know?” Jeff, Nick and Thad each nodded as Blaine was making sure that he knew that they understood what he was trying to say. In fact, they probably understood things better than they had in a long time.
“What are you going to do now Blaine?” Nick asked.
“I don’t know. I’ll ask Sam tomorrow if he knows about the whole tape giveback…” Blaine stopped when the others started looking back and forth between each other “What else don’t I know guys?”
“Blaine, Sam knew. All of last year’s New Directions knew. All of us Warblers went to McKinley and had this big kumbaya moment with them. Well, actually we sang Black or White” Jeff explained.
“Except Sebastian” Thad corrected “He was still in I’m the asshole, blame me mode.”
Blaine tried to wrap his head around all of the information he had been given. None of this had been anywhere on his radar when he texted his three friends earlier. But now, now he found out Sebastian had taken responsibility and Kurt had done…done…oh hell, he couldn’t even think about that yet. He knew that there was going to be nothing he could do until he talked to Sam, but the original problem still needed to be dealt with and with that there was one question Blaine hadn’t asked yet “What’s going on between Sebastian and Clarington?”
“He’s still doing penitence” Thad huffed “Like we said, there is something bat-shit crazy about Clarington and Sebastian is either keeping the crazy down or away from us, one or the other.”
“I hate to tell you this” Jeff was trying to figure out a way to say what he needed to without Blaine blaming himself “After you turned us down today, Sebastian kicked Trent off the Warblers.”
Out of everything he had heard since he arrived, Blaine somehow found that the most shocking “Trent? Why Trent? And Sebastian said he wasn’t captain.”
“No, but he’s Hunter’s number two. All we can think of is something’s going down and he’s protecting him.”
“From what?” Blaine knew how much Trent loved being a Warbler, and this news was breaking his heart.
“Like we keep saying, we don’t know but think it’s going to be bad” Thad stated “Blaine, I’m an asshole, I admit it. And these two, while they seem like nice guys on the outside, they can push back when shoved. Trent? Well…”
“He’s a puppy” Blaine finished, finally understanding what the others had been inferring.
Trying to not be overwhelmed by everything, Blaine stood up and started to walk around. For the first time since he arrived he got a good look at the place, other than the Warblers’ Commons, that had been his sanctuary. He didn’t realize until that moment how much he had missed it, but being mindfully there gave him the clarity to understand what should happen next.
“Ok, this is what’s going to happen. I will keep you three informed about any information my contact gives me, but you guys have to keep me informed about what happens tomorrow especially with Clarington and Sebastian. Tomorrow when I go to McKinley, I’m going to let Sam know what’s going on. I know he is an outsider, but after everything you told me, I need someone I can talk to there and he’s not going to say anything. The same code of secrecy we share here, he and I share but through comics. Now, I’m assuming that since tomorrow is the Thursday before a four-day weekend, what we can’t talk about is happening.”
“We have no idea what you are talking about” Jeff said with a wide smile that was matched by the others. When the three of them had received the text earlier, this was what they had been hoping for.
“Fine, I understand, but say I was guessing that since this was the first four-day weekend of the year a King of the Mountain Challenge was made and knowing Clarington’s a self-absorbed douche, he made it. And say I wanted to get a hold of the Rules Council and claim a Legacy Exemption, but not talk about it or anything like that.”
Yup! This was exactly what they had wanted “Would you want to keep it secret, hypothetically speaking of course.” Nick wanted to know.
“I would have whoever put me down as Hugh Jackman, if I could talk about it ” Blaine said with a wink “And before you start to worry, I have spent A LOT of time in front of the heavy bag lately. I wouldn’t be doing this if I didn’t know for a fact that I could kick his ass.”
The four talked for about another hour. Blaine told them about Kurt and the other guy as well as his text to Wes. Then they discussed a plan on how to secretly get Blaine into Jeff and Nick’s dorm room the next evening so he could prepare. For the first time in what seemed like forever, things felt right between the four of them which was why it was so hard for Blaine to leave. It was also why Jeff felt the need to say “Blaine, as much as we love the idea of what’s going to happen, you can’t do this to save us. You can’t do it for Sebastian either.”
Blaine turned back to look at them and said with complete sincerity “Guys, I promise that I’m not. If I am trying to save anyone, I’m trying to save myself.”
Couldn’t get it out of my head, so I'm just going to have to go ahead and write this. Let me know what you think.