Burt Hummel had always, always, known that Kirby was a little... odd. Not in a bad way, not in any way, shape or form! In fact, her oddities only served to make him proud of her. And yes, she enjoyed the same things other little girls her age did, always had, be it Barbies, dress-up, the tea parties she subjected him to, and those Sensible Heels her mother joyfully purchased for her on her third birthday. However, she was raised in the garage environment after her mother had died, with big dirty men who cussed worse than sailors, and belched and farted and ate gross, greasy food everyday for lunch. He would have thought that she would have picked up on some of that, but the impeccable mannerisms her mother had drilled into her head before her death remained completely in tact and unsullied by the inappropriate behavior that was exhibited all around her.
That said, his daughter could also wrestle with the best of them and reduce any one of those big, brawny men to a pitiful, sniffling mess with her cutting tongue, so perhaps she wasn't as unaffected as they all supposed. She was just better at keeping it under wraps than they were.
Really though, he'd heard about this generations stereotypical 'bad boy' that all the girls (and women) around here fawned over and lusted after (hell, he was the one of his, he'd recognize it anywhere). But dating him? After he'd slept with a good portion of the female population in this town? Truly, Burt thought that he'd put better common sense into his little girls head, especially when that Puckerman boy had already impregnated another girl.
Burt stewed quietly during dinner, keeping a tight grip on his utensils as he dug into his portion of salad, watching his daughter try to keep in the soft giggles that Mohawk was prompting from her as he subtly struck up a game of Footsies under the table while cutting off a piece of steak. Kirby rolled her eyes and shifted a bit in her chair, angling her knees closer to her prospective boyfriend. Burt's disapproving frown grew deeper when, as he moved on from the big, juicy, perfectly cooked steak onto the creamy mashed potatoes (no, dammit, he was not jealous that he was stuck with half portions for the last month while Mohawk got a full plate!), the hand holding his knife disappeared under the table.
The thin metal of his fork bent in his hand at the giggle-snort that escaped, one that reminded him so much of his deceased wife, and he wondered vaguely if this was how Kendra's father felt the first time she brought him home.
He must have made some sort of noise of aversion because Kirby looked at him with an innocent expression that soon morphed into something that resembled his own stubborn glare, bottom lip turning down into the pout that she picked up from her mother.
"Dad," she said lowly, tone warning him not to push her. Puck cleared his throat quietly and respectfully put his hand back in view. Kirby scoffed and rolled her eyes. "Wimp."
"Not a wimp," Puck muttered, eyebrows drawing down.
"Nothing wrong with being respectful to your girlfriends father," Burt pointed out severely dropping his utensils in favour of crossing his arms over his chest.
"I'm sure, Papa-Bear," Kirby started, a teasing grin spreading over her lips, "just like you when you were dating mom, huh?"
"Yeah, just like me," Burt nodded decisively, Puck glancing between them with a confused frown.
"Hey, don't take that tone with me young lady."
"Look, I should probably-" Puck stood to leave, pushing back his chairs to get out of the middle of the rising argument that seemed to be stirring. He was cut off by both Hummel's demanding he sit down without looking at him. "Ookay."
The silence continued as father and daughter stared each other down before they smiled and turned back to their dinner, striking up a conversation about how business at the garage was going. Burt watched as the punks face screwed into an even deeper befuddled frown as he looked between them. Kirby noticed his lost expression and shook her head fondly, leaning over to gently plant a kiss on his cheek.
"Don't worry," she said softly, tone reassuring, "you'll get it eventually."
'If he plans on staying long enough,' Burt thought. If he was completely truthful with himself, he would admit that he was being selfish and he wanted to keep his daughter all to himself, not let anyone near her until she inevitably went off to college, and even then he wanted to keep her in town where he could keep an eye on her. But as he witnessed Mohawk's relieved grin and the delicate pink flush that spread across Kirby's cheeks, he thought he just might get used to sharing her.
But only for short periods at a time.
"So, Kirby, I noticed your dry cleaning bill has gone down in the last month," he said casually, ignoring how Kirby rolled her eyes and grumbled an exasperated, "Daaad!"
He also noticed how Mohawk tensed and a frown passed over his face.
"If you must know, father-of-mine, yes, my bill has gone down," she said primly, cutting into the smaller chunk of steak she'd served herself, even though she could probably pack away even more than Mohawk could and stay as small as she was. "All thanks to Noah."
"You're dead set on defending him, aren't you?" Burt asked, tone slowly becoming more resigned than before. Seeing Kirby's resolute nod and Puck's suddenly wide eyes as he stared at the petite brunette, he decided to give his badgering a rest. "I suppose I should've seen something like this coming earlier though, but your mom was always better with this."
"Hmm?" Kirby tilted her head to the side, munching on a slice of carrot. "Seen what?"
"This thing you have going on." Burt motioned to the two of them, sitting so comfortably side by side. "After all, you never came crying to us after a nightmare or because of the Boogeyman. No, you got up and made friends with him."
"Dad!" Kirby's face went red as Noah laughed (Noah? Was he getting used to the idea already? Punk.) and threw an arm around her shoulders, pulling her close and gently rubbing his nose against her cheek.
"Look at that, Pinky, we were meant to be, as mandated by the Boogeyman!"
"Ooh, mandated, big word Caveman." Kirby pouted and crossed her arms. Her petulant posture was quickly destroyed when Noah poked her, running his fingers up and down her sides until she squirmed and dissolved into laughter. Burt watched them, a lopsided smile growing on his lips, as they ran out of the room and began cleaning up the leftovers.
"Keep the door open!" he yelled, snickering at the whined, "Daad!"
Life was good, even if he had to share his greatest treasure with a boy who had a less than adulatory reputation.