Puck has to get used to how quiet the house is once Sam leaves. Things are sort of awkward with his mom, considering he just dropped the whole boyfriend thing on her without any warning, and it’s the day after prom so pretty much everybody else is probably sleeping off Santana’s after-party.
Having Sam back at McKinley had been a little weird, even though it was only a night. Everybody had hugged him and high-fived him and fist-bumped him, and Puck had felt weirdly annoyed at their enthusiasm. Nine months of radio silence, and then all of a sudden everybody’s pretending like nothing’s changed. Plus there’d been Santana threatening Sam and Rachel telling them both fifteen hundred stories about her two gay dads, and Quinn had looked at the two of them like she didn’t even recognise them anymore, and everyone else had been armed with questions he didn’t feel like answering.
He didn’t regret bringing Sam, though. They’d thought about skipping, spending the evening curled up on Puck’s couch, watching movies and eating pizza, but it in the end it felt important that they go. So they’d gone, and pretended they didn’t feel the weight of the stares on them when Puck pulled Sam close during the slow songs.
There’s going to be fallout tomorrow, that much is inevitable. Sam’s worried, Puck can tell, but he can handle it. Finn will have his back, and Artie, and Rachel (although she’ll really only be useful if he needs someone to wash the slushie out of his mohawk).
He’s starting on his math homework for tomorrow when his phone starts buzzing, and it takes him a second to find it buried under a few sheets of paper.
“Hey,” Puck answers just as the second ring starts.
“Hi,” Puck can hear the smile in Sam’s voice, “What are you up to?”
“Working on my calc homework. But I could use a break.”
“How was the drive back?”
“Boring. And quiet. My iPod died somewhere in Kentucky.”
“It’s all right. Gave me some time to think.”
“Yeah, I’m glad you convinced me to visit this weekend. It was fun.”
“Yeah it was,” Puck says, his voice dropping a little. They definitely had plenty of fun.
“I told my parents about us.” Sam blurts.
For a second, Puck doesn’t know how he’s supposed to react, his brain still stuck on the fun he and Sam had gotten up to this weekend. But then Sam’s words hit him for real, and Puck feels a pleasant jolt hit his stomach. He’s never been the sort of boy anybody’s wanted to tell their parents about. “How’d it go?”
“All right, I guess. I mean, they were pretty surprised, but they'll be okay. They're processing. How’s your mom doing?”
“It probably would have gone over better if she didn’t find out by catching us making out. But she’ll be fine, once the shock wears off. And if she’s not…well, I’m moving out in August anyway.”
“Does she know we’re going to be roommates too?”
“No. Figure I’ll ease her in to that one.”
“Same here.” Sam yawns.
“You need to get some sleep, babe,” Puck laughs.
“Yeah. And you need to finish your calc.”
“Unfortunately.” Puck agrees.
“Be careful tomorrow.” Sam warns, because he can’t not say it.
“I’ll be fine. Don’t worry.”
“Can’t help it.”
“I know. Sleep tight.”
“You too. Talk to you tomorrow?”
* * *
Puck doesn’t think any of the clothes he wore today will ever be wearable again, but he’d been prepared for that, so he doesn’t really care about getting rid of a few old pairs of jeans and some t-shirts rather than trying to wash several layers of red dye #40 out of them.
His skin still feels slightly sticky, even after showering, and he can still smell artificial cherry. He counts himself lucky that nobody tried to throw anything besides slushies at him today, although he feels pretty guilty that Artie and Rachel both got caught in the crossfire. And that Blaine, Kurt and Santana are targets again after a couple months of flying under the radar.
There are only three weeks to go until graduation, and after that it’s a summer of partying with his friends and hopefully driving down to visit Sam and spending some time with Beth and then it’s college, where he hopefully won’t have to put up with any bullshit like at McKinley. Then again, it’s Ohio, so maybe he’ll have to settle for less bullshit than McKinley.
He checks the time, sees that it’s after five which means Sam should be home from football practice, and dials his boyfriend’s number. Today genuinely sucked, and he’s pretty sure talking to Sam is the only thing that’s going to make it better.
The phone rings six times, and just before it goes to voicemail, Sam answers, sounding out of breath, “Hi.”
“I call later,” Puck offers, “if it’s not a good time.”
“It’s fine. You’re rescuing me from tag with Stacey and Stevie. Brought them to the playground to get them out of the house for a bit. They were driving Mom crazy.”
“My spidey senses were tingling. I thought you might need rescuing.”
Sam laughs, and Puck can’t help smiling despite his rotten day.
“How are you?” Sam asks, his voice sliding from amused to concerned in point two seconds.
Puck intends to say fine, but that’s not what he hears himself saying. “I don’t know.”
“Do you need me to come up?” Sam offers without hesitating. “I can get on a bus.”
“Babe, no. It’s cool. I mean, it’s not cool, but it could have been a lot worse. Just slushies.”
“You sure?” Sam prods and Puck thinks that’s probably the downside to how well they know each other by now. Sam knows there are things Puck isn’t telling him.
Puck huffs out a sigh. “There were lots of assholes running their mouths off.” Puck doesn’t want to think about the things he’s been called today or the things people have said about Sam. The words hurt more than he thought they would, especially knowing that he used to be the kind of asshole that threw words like that around without even thinking about it.
“Oh. Probably could’ve figured that out on my own.”
“It sucks. They don’t have any right to judge me for who I lo—date.” Puck is grateful that he catches himself just in time, because laying an I love you on Sam this early would be crazy. “I wanted to punch all their dumbass faces, but I’m not fucking up my scholarship with three weeks to go.”
“Yeah, please don’t do that.” Sam says, still sounding worried. “Are you okay?”
“I think. Or I will be. Just miss you.”
“I miss you too. Maybe I can drive up again in a couple weeks.”
“Nah, it’s my turn to come to you. Unless your parents aren’t down with that…”
“Maybe not right yet. But I’ll ask anyway. Fair warning, they’re not gonna be as chill about it as your mom was. Separate bedrooms all the way.”
“That’s okay.” Puck says. “Just wanna see you.”
“I should go,” Sam says, and Puck can hear the reluctance in his voice. “Have to get Stacey and Stevie home for dinner.”
“That’s fine, babe. Tomorrow?”
“Tomorrow.” Sam confirms.
Puck hangs up, but he doesn’t dig his homework out of his backpack like he’d been planning before calling Sam. Graduation is in three weeks, and he’s gotten into college, so he really doesn’t care about a few measly homework grades. All he cares about is getting out, and getting somewhere people don’t give a fuck about who he loves.