For the third time that night, Kurt knocked on Blaine's door, but still did not receive an answer.
It was 7:30 PM; an hour after Blaine had said they would meet up for dinner. Blaine was rarely ever late and if he would be, he had the manners to call and let people know beforehand (albeit after apologizing profusely as he did). It was one of the more charming qualities he liked about Blaine.
By the time Kurt realized Blaine was late it was fifteen minutes past seven. He was making roads in his assignments and hadn't even noticed he was hungry until his stomach rumbled uncomfortably.
Kurt frowned as he turned around and pulled out his phone. He rested his back against the door as he called Blaine's cell. It rang until it hit his voicemail. Kurt didn't bother leaving a message until after the third time this happened.
"Hey, just wondering if you got caught up at Stanton's, or are stuck in traffic. Let me know if you still want to meet up for dinner. I'll wait another half hour, but I'm not making any promises." Kurt attempted to project a teasing lilt to his voice, but it was still laced with enough worry that the joke fell flat. "Just call me when you get this," he managed after a beat. “Talk to you soon."
Kurt ended the call, the uneasy feeling he felt in his stomach not diminishing in the slightest. He was overreacting; he had to be. Blaine was allowed to be late every once in a while.
When eight-thirty came and went Kurt went in search of Wes. David, Blaine's roommate and his usual 'Where's Blaine' go-to person, went home for the weekend for his grandmother's seventy-fifth birthday. Kurt hesitated for a second outside Wes' room before knocking on the door. He and Wes never...meshed very well since he arrived at Dalton; the other was so intense with things Kurt barely spared a second thought to and was not nearly as approachable as David was. Kurt also had a feeling that Wes just didn't like him. The other never said anything outright offensive towards him, but of the few awkward and stilted conversations they'd shared, it was clear that they just weren't going to be friends, which was just fine with Kurt. He wasn't deluded enough to believe you could be friends with everyone you met.
Regardless, being as both were close friends with Blaine, they came to an unspoken agreement to tolerate each other.
It didn't take very long for Wes to answer the door and considering how worried Kurt was at the moment, he chose to overlook the slightly surprised look that crossed over the other's face.
"Kurt. What can I do for you?" Wes asked as he motioned for the other to come in. Kurt obliged eyes already scanning the room for a familiar face.
Wes' room was immaculate. A navy blue comforter was spread neatly on his bed and a matching area rug rested on the hardwood floor between the two twin beds. His walls were bare, but several debate trophies and framed certificates lined the top shelf of his bookcase. His laptop displayed a paused video from his desk, and the only real sign of clutter in the room was perhaps a piece of loose leaf paper that stuck out of one of his textbooks.
Dorm rooms at Dalton were not large, so unless Blaine was hiding behind the window curtains, he wasn't here. It wasn't that Kurt expected him to be, but it didn't stop him from hoping it.
"Have you seen Blaine?" Kurt asked. "We were supposed to meet up for dinner after he got back from Stanton's, but he's two hours late."
Kurt watched as Wes' entire body straightened from its previous relaxed stance. "That's...unusual," Wes said at length. "I'm assuming he's not answering his cell?"
Kurt shook his head. "He's not picking up. It's not going straight to voicemail either, so it has to be on. I was hoping he was with you."
It was Wes' turn to shake his head. "I haven't seen him all day," Wes said as he turned around and grabbed his phone. He started typing on the touchscreen. "I'm sending a mass text; see if anyone's seen him."
Kurt nodded feeling somewhat relieved that the other was taking charge and seemed to know what to do. They waited and after ten minutes received, rather miraculously, responses from everyone. Unfortunately, no one had seen Blaine recently. Jeff had seen him earlier this afternoon heading out of the school, but that was all.
"We can ask the front office to make an announcement over the PA system," Wes suggested next, face set in a worried frown. "He could have fallen asleep somewhere."
It wasn't likely. Blaine didn't like falling asleep in public, but it was a possibility. A slight one anyway.
"We can also search the grounds," the other added.
Kurt checked his watch. "Curfew's in two hours, but Stanton closes in one. I...Wes, I have a bad feeling about this. I don't want to wait that long; I'm going to drive over to Stanton's. See if he's still there."
Wes was quick to agree. "All right, I'll grab Thad and take a look around. I'll call you if we find him. You do the same."
Kurt nodded already heading out the room. Wes followed him, speaking to Thad, he presumed, on his phone. They separated ways at the end of the hall: Kurt heading out towards the parking lot and Wes deeper into the dorms.
Neither spared the time to give a parting wave.
Kurt stared uncomprehendingly at the messenger bag that sat beside the driver's side door of Blaine's Audi. It didn't take long to spot the blue car in the lot and upon seeing it, Kurt immediately headed into the music store in search of its owner.
Blaine wasn't inside though and the manager he spoke with didn't recognize the description he gave her of the lead soloist; however, she was conducting an inventory in the back room on and off throughout the day, so she may have missed him. She mentioned that their cashier may have seen him, but he had just gone home.
It was what led Kurt to where he stood now. Blaine's bag was just sitting on the asphalt; unopened as if he just placed it there, but that didn't make sense. Kurt took another look around. The parking lot wasn't large. Maybe fifteen spots made up the entire lot. Under the faint yellow glow of the overhead lights, he didn't see anything other than two other cars besides his and Blaine's. The unease Kurt felt multiplied and he pulled out his phone.
Wes picked up after the first ring and before Kurt could even open his mouth, the other asked, "Is he there?"
The last shred of hope Kurt felt fizzled away in that instant and he looked around the dark lot rather helplessly.
"No," Kurt exhaled. "Wes, his car's here and his messenger bag is just lying here beside it."
Wes was silent on the other end and Kurt could hear Thad's voice in the background. "Okay," Wes finally drew out slowly. "Okay," he repeated again but after that said nothing.
Kurt waited another few seconds before he started jogging back to the store. "I'm going to ask the manager to call the cashier. She didn't see Blaine, but he may have."
"Yeah, okay. That sounds good," Wes said his voice gaining volume again and confidence. "I'm going to report this to campus security."
"All right, I'll ca—" Kurt came to an abrupt halt, body swiveling back to stare behind him.
"What's wrong?" Wes asked.
"I...Blaine's bag. I left it there," he replied starting to head back to Blaine's car. "Someone could—"
"Leave it," Wes said. "The police might—"
Kurt stumbled to a halt again. "Police?" he repeated hollowly.
"I don't—I mean." Wes paused again seemingly to take a deep breath to regroup. "I'm assuming that's our next step—what campus security will do."
Right, Kurt thought hazily. That made sense; it just hadn't occurred to him. Blaine was missing. Not just late, but missing. This wasn't something they could just solve on their own.
Wes' voice cut through Kurt's thoughts and he blinked back to awareness.
"Go talk to the manager," Wes said. "Call me when you're done."
Kurt nodded, turning around again. "Right," he said. And as he walked back into the store, Kurt hoped they would be able to tell him something useful.
It was hours later when Kurt finally entered his dorm room. His roommate, Kyle, slept seated upright in his bed with his back against the wall. A magazine lay across his lap and it was obvious the other had attempted to wait up for him.
Kurt glanced blearily at his desk clock. The red LED numbers told him it was only one seventeen in the morning, but it felt much later than that.
He'd just come from speaking with Detective Riley from the Minerva Park Police Department. It wasn’t very long after he had spoken with Wes that the police arrived after being notified by Dalton's security office. He was in the middle of relating what he knew to the Detective when Wes and Thad turned up. Both decided they didn't want to wait at Dalton for news despite there being nothing they could possibly do or contribute by being there.
Kurt was grateful for their presence, however, especially when the Andersons arrived. He had only met Blaine's mother once before and her behavior now was completely different from the collected, but open woman he had met last month.
Mrs. Anderson was literally frantic, flitting from Detective Riley to Samantha (Stanton's store manager) to Kurt; asking if Blaine mentioned going anywhere else, or if he planned to meet someone tonight. It was heartbreaking to see especially when Kurt couldn't tell her what she wanted to hear—couldn't even relate any useful information to the police because he didn't know anything.
It was Wes who gently pried Mrs. Anderson's hands off of Kurt's shoulders and spoke to her in even and reassuring tones that the police were doing all they could and that they would find Blaine. Mrs. Anderson seemed to regain her composure at that point, nodding wearily and looking around for her husband.
Kurt had never met George Anderson before. He only knew what Blaine mentioned in passing—which wasn't much—but of what he had heard, it wasn't particularly in the man’s favor either. Kurt did not know what to make of the man, who was conversing quietly, but intently with Detective Riley beside Blaine's car.
On a purely physical standpoint, the resemblance between Mr. Anderson and his son was uncanny (save for the older man's rather large nose) and it was like previewing the man Blaine would eventually become. Mr. Anderson's tall stature; the way he carried himself; and how he spoke in resonant tones all commanded attention and was reminiscent of how Blaine presented himself whenever he performed. Of course, Blaine was far less intimidating.
It wasn't clear from where he was standing if Mr. Anderson looked worried, but with the way he instinctively wrapped his arm around his wife's shoulder when she approached him was telling enough that the man wasn't made of stone. It was only when Mr. Anderson walked over to introduce himself to Kurt that he could see the tension that straddled the man's shoulders; how his grip was less firm than what Kurt would expect of a lawyer's handshake.
George Anderson was worried and looked just as lost as he assumed they all felt, but was attempting to hide it beneath a confident front to assuage his wife's anxiety. Kurt had seen Blaine do the same for junior Warblers before performances and it wasn't difficult to see where he learned it from.
Kurt was glad in a way—not of the circumstances, or to be spiteful, but if George Anderson was worried, it meant that he must care for Blaine. That he was not entirely indifferent to his son’s wellbeing as Blaine had come to believe.
Kurt shrugged off his coat and hung it in his closet. He knelt down to untie his shoelaces, before toeing off the leather Oxfords and padding over quietly to Kyle's bed. He took hold of the sophomore's comforter that lay bunched up at the end of his mattress and draped it around the slumbering boy's shoulders. Kyle didn't stir and as always, Kurt was grateful that the other was such a heavy sleeper. Because he wasn't up to discussing all that had happened tonight, knowing it would also lead him into considering what would happen from this point forward.
Because Blaine was missing. Went to Stanton's as they had done so many times in the past and disappeared; leaving behind his car, messenger bag, and that canary keychain Kurt had given him for his birthday. Kurt still couldn't wrap his head around it, felt guilty enough as it is that he was even contemplating sleep when he wasn't sure if Blaine had the same luxury. If Blaine was still even...
Kurt shook his head violently as if the motion alone would knock the thought right out of his mind. He crawled onto his bed, uniform still on, and mirrored his roommate's seated position. He eventually drew his knees up to his chest and pillowed his head on top of his folded arms.
Kurt sat there until the pre-dawn light filtered through the window blinds and fell into a restless sleep.