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Harem

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Kurt was never exactly sure how his 'harem' was formed.

He had been friends with Brittany Pierce since the age of seven years old, when they had attended the same contemporary dance classes together and befriended each other. Their ability was stellar and that, plus Kurt's effeminacy and Brittany's dreamy way of asking farfetched questions, made them somewhat the outcasts of the class. The other children stuck to each other and stayed away from Kurt and Brittany wherever possible. Strangely, Kurt and Brittany did not seem to mind this, though, as each other's choreographic ideas and motifs were designed around the two of them. Their performance prowess was well beyond the usual realms of what a typical seven year old can achieve and their teacher recognised this. Instead of teaching them the basic steps and routines that she had been teaching the other students, she instructed them to complete complex choreography tasks and come up with a routine that was fresh and innovative and, if it met her standards, she would allow the duo to perform it at the recital as an added number. Excited by the prospects of a spotlight routine, Kurt and Brittany got stuck into the work, meeting several times a week for practice sessions, neither one complaining about the advanced nature of their assignment. When the other kids began to display several signs of jealousy, they took it out on Kurt, who they believed to be the vulnerable little boy of the group. Brittany was always there to defend Kurt, which the small boy appreciated. Kurt could handle what they threw at him, but it was always nice to have somebody in his corner.

From then on, Brittany had become fascinated with the man that Kurt Hummel was rapidly becoming. The tragic, sudden death of his mother meant that Kurt was growing up much earlier than any child should ever have to. At the age of eleven, Kurt was far more emotionally developed than any of his peers, and Brittany recognised this. Kurt understood what to say and when to say it, whilst grasping people's sensitivities to certain subjects. Instead of being a loquacious pre-teen, Kurt spoke and behaved more like an adult. This jarred Brittany somewhat, as sometimes she felt that she didn't know what to say around Kurt. She felt that anything she might say would be too childish and immature for him. That was when she realised that Kurt was still a child, but acted more like an adult when around other people. Brittany was the one person that he could be a child around. Everybody else had Kurt erecting his emotional shields and holding them in place, become more lackadaisical with each conversation. His interests were the same and his conversations were based around the same things as before, but he processed and expressed them in different, more mature methods. This had spurred Brittany on to be smarter and more observant. She continued to worry that Kurt would leave her behind and make older friends, with who he had more to discuss. Brittany learned new words and remembered when to use them in her speech. She worked harder in school to try and be as clever as Kurt. She watched people whenever she could and realised that people vastly underestimated her.

Except for Kurt. Kurt had always been the one person that she could safely call her equal. He never judged her for the things that she said or the things that she did. If he said something that she did not comprehend, he would take the time to explain it to her, rather than dismissing her altogether. She appreciated that and she loved him for it. He was her first friend.

Their friendship progressed throughout their teenage years. Brittany had realised that Kurt was gay when they were thirteen. She had never before really looked out for any signs but, now that she knew what it was, she clicked on to it quickly. Kurt was yet to tell her, but she knew that he would when he was comfortable. By this point, they were more akin to siblings than best friends. They confessed their deepest secrets to each other, including Kurt coming out to her (which happened during freshman year) and Brittany telling him that she was attracted to a girl on the Cheerios with her. Kurt, being Kurt, had obviously not made a big deal about this fact, but when Brittany made it clear that she was still interested in boys, that had stumped him.

Kurt had researched being gay on his phone (where his dad couldn't see his Internet activity) but he lacked understanding of bisexuality and had previously dismissed it as not being a viable state of sexuality. When Brittany had told him about herself, he had felt terrible that he had misjudged the situation entirely. Brittany had expressed it in such a manner that he felt guilty for having ever doubted its feasibility in the first place. Brittany had opened his mind considerably and he had thanked her for that. Their friendship wasn't one that many people caught onto, because it wasn't paraded around the school, but it was sacred and the bond the two shared would last forever and there was nothing they wouldn't do to protect each other. Brittany had yelled at a jock for pushing Kurt into a locker, which had gotten Brittany insulted, which had spurred Kurt on to insult him back (rather impressively, Brittany had thought) which started a regular cycle of the two looking out for each other. Kurt couldn't stand to see Brittany hurt or upset, so tried to keep the bullying from her, unsuccessfully.

When Kurt had played straight during their sophomore year and had wanted to make out with a girl and asked Brittany, since they were already comfortable, Brittany had sat him down and gently lectured him about why it wasn't a good idea. She encouraged his individuality and reassured him that his dad loved him, no matter where Finn was. Kurt had avoided having his first kiss be with a girl, his childhood sister of all girls, and continued to be proud of the person he had become. Brittany thought he was pretty awesome and that was good enough for Kurt.

His friendship with Quinn Fabray had begun in freshman year, when (believing his heterosexuality) he had been waiting for Brittany outside of the gymnasium after Cheerios and she had asked him out, noticing his attractiveness and making a move. Kurt had been speechless. He had not expected to be asked out by the head cheerleader and did not know whether to decline or accept. Thinking of Brittany's words when he had come out, he had politely declined, though had proposed an offer to go shopping with her after hearing of the vast depletion in her shoe collection. She had heartily accepted and the two had gone on various shopping excursions afterwards. Quinn was impressed with his eye for fashion, and had quietly asked him if he was gay. He had just nodded, not wanting to say it aloud just yet. He was still properly accepting it himself. He briefly debated the merits of outing himself to the head cheerleader, but he had done it as he had found himself strangely interested in the girl. He thought she was simply marvellous and she loved his company just as much.

It had helped that Brittany liked Quinn, too. The two blondes were active in the Cheerios together and now they had Kurt in common too. Quinn was slowly becoming a member of their weekly sleepovers and shopping trips. When Quinn started dating Finn, just before sophomore year, it had struck a potential rift in their friendship. Kurt liked Finn and Brittany knew that. When Finn had lovingly picked her up from Kurt's house, he had bolted back inside, not being able to stand to watch them dotingly kiss each other outside of his house. Brittany had felt bad for Kurt and asked Quinn politely not to do it again. When Quinn had asked why, it had been Kurt who had told her. Quinn had admitted his courage for telling someone that he liked their boyfriend but she didn't mind and would respect him enough not to commit PDA while Kurt was around or talk about him to them. Kurt was very appreciative of Quinn's actions, and that had only made him like her more.

From then on, it was the three of them. Quinn resisted against the tempting pull of popularity that threatened to drive a wedge between her and Kurt, simply liking the boy too much to not be friends with him. She had been knocked down a few rungs in the popularity ladder and had not batted an eyelid. It was the trio against the world.

Kurt's friendship with Tina Cohen-Chang began long before Quinn arrived on the scene. They were casual friends at elementary school, but hadn't really cemented a bond between them as of yet, so they didn't make much effort to see other. However, when they did at school, the conversation was effortless. Kurt thought Tina was great, if not a little shy. As they gradually grew up and Tina began to stutter, Tina was in awe of Kurt's confidence and resilience. She saw how the other mean boys knocked him down every day about his voice and his clothes and she also saw how he picked himself back up and refused to let it bother him. This had inspired her to become more confident within herself. She had asked Kurt how to become more confident and he just said:

"You do it by liking yourself and knowing that you are being exactly who you want to be. And even if you don't like yourself particularly much, tell yourself that you do and the confidence flows through. By liking who you are, or displaying pseudo-fondness, you don't let other people tell you about yourself and you just walk around proudly. But you should love yourself anyway, Tina Cohen-Chang, because you're pretty great." When Tina had asked him if he liked himself, it was that moment that Kurt knew that they would be friends. Her absorption of his answer and quiet observations had resulted in Tina seeing things about Kurt that nobody else besides Brittany did. She knew it was a mask, a façade that he conjured to make people think that their words and actions couldn't affect him. Tina was silently sure that Kurt let his emotions best him in the privacy of his own bedroom, though she would never ask him.

It wasn't until freshman year, though, that Kurt and Tina really connected and became close friends. They had both signed up to McKinley's Glee Club, Rhythm Explosion, on their first day, and decided that they would go for it together. They were together in their mutual distaste for Rachel Berry and her daily attire. They were together in their quest to get solos. They were together in everything Glee-related and, gradually, everything else too. Tina had warmed to Brittany rather speedily, which Kurt was thankful for. Brittany liked the other girl just as much, though realised that there was a lot she didn't know about the girl.

When Quinn had entered the situation, Tina had been somewhat frightened. She had confessed to Kurt that having the head cheerleader around make her nervous, but Kurt had assured her that Quinn was lovely and, even if she was a little judgmental sometimes, she had pure intentions. Tina had, rather surprisingly, found out that Quinn was a lovely person and the girls had not clashed as Tina was scared that would. Kurt had a quartet. He loved his girls and was happy that they loved him. Things were going smoothly for him in the friendship department. He wasn't desperate for heaps of friends and acquaintances like one Mercedes Jones, but was rather content with a few extremely close friends. That being said, Kurt had never expected the fifth addition to their group.

His friendship with Santana Lopez was fresh at the end of freshman year. Kurt had been appreciative of the girl's talent in Glee Club and her brutal honesty outside of it, something which he thought was an admirable trait in a person. It was then that he had finally pieced together the puzzle and gleaned that Santana was the girl that Brittany liked on the Cheerios. At first, he had suspected that it was Quinn, because everyone seemed to like Quinn (and Finn's love for her had absolutely nothing to do with that, at all, no way) and the girls connected well. When Kurt had first seen Brittany and Santana together in Glee Club, he had thought that they were very close friends, nothing more, as Santana was recognised school-wide for her sexual promiscuity with boys, and he had never sensed anything more with her.

When Kurt had realised that Santana Lopez was the most guarded person since himself, everything clicked like one huge-ass jigsaw. Santana was a lesbian and hid her sexuality by compensating with boys. When Kurt had found out about Finn sleeping with Santana, he was at first jealous, but then after he learned of Santana's sexuality, he was angry. He and Finn were almost kind of not really stepbrothers and he looked out for his almost kind of not really family at whatever cost. He was angry that she had snatched his virginity in her talons (once the pangs of jealousy and curiosity had worn off of course) but he was more angry at her for how she had been treating herself. Despite his insane notions of playing straight for his dad's attention, Kurt had never considered sleeping with a girl. That Santana would open herself up (literally. Ew, gross, Kurt had thought) to something that she was not attracted to just so she could hide who she really was, saddened him a little bit. He had sat her down and talked to her about being gay, something which she was reluctant to hear out loud, but, internally, she required it. She needed a lesson in self-acceptance and who better to give it to her than the King of it all?

Santana had truly opened herself up to Kurt (not like that, gross) about everything. Once Santana felt that she could trust him, which surprisingly had not taken her long, she confessed to him about her façade, something which he returned, her fear of judgement, her insecurities (although Kurt reassured her that she was hot, "you know, for a girl and all") but she was insecure about her personality and about Brittany. She figured that she wasn't deserving of loving Brittany, who was so open and carefree whereas she herself was not and preferred to hide who she was in favour of lying to everyone. Kurt had not commented on her worthiness, because in his eyes nobody was worthy of Brittany, but had pointed out that she deserved whatever made her happy. Santana was miffed because she had never thought of it like that, but also appreciative because Kurt had slotted all the pieces into place.

Something that all four girls had in common was their love for Kurt Hummel. He loved them just as much and, although the girls were close with each other, Kurt was the never-fraying thread that sealed their friendship. Their relationships with each other weren't dependent on Kurt, but he glued him together and balanced their differences out. He was the calm zone. He was the anchor.

And that is how Kurt Hummel's Harem of Hot Bitches (Santana's idea) was formed. And the thing to note about the harem is that once somebody is screwed over, the other four go for the jugular of whoever committed such an act.

But when somebody hurts all four of Kurt's girls, nobody will know where to even look for the body.

Noah Puckerman committed such a foul, loathsome act.

Noah Puckerman was about to experience the full power of Kurt Hummel once and for all.

Noah Puckerman would rue the day he ever messed with a member of the KHHHB (Kurt Hummel's Harem of Hot Bitches) because what Kurt had planned outweighed every single bad thing he had ever done in his life, bar none.

In other words, shit was about to go the hell down.

Chapter Text

Every single day of his life, Kurt has had to spend valuable time evaluating the life choices of Noah Puckerman. After Quinn's sophomore year slip up, Santana's frequent hook ups with the brute, his poor treatment of Kurt himself and sweet Brittany, he had been forced to play the defensive for a while. Once he understood Noah Puckerman, he could begin to pick him apart slowly but effectively. And Kurt definitely planned to.

The first straw was Santana. He messed around with her constantly and still treated her like a piece of garbage. Kurt knew, even before their friendship that Santana Lopez was worth much more, but she refused to believe it. Her sleeping with Puck meant that nobody shoved their suspicious and curious noses into her business. Admittedly, Santana gave back as good as she got and more so, but Puck went to her for sex when he couldn't get anybody else. Kurt vowed to never have his girls treated as a last resort. They weren't girls who were relied upon for a quickie in the janitor's closet. They were respected, fierce women. Puck treated Santana like a whore and capitalised on her doubtfulness about her sexuality, although he didn't know it. They used each other, but Puck always bragged about doing Santana in some random place and used it to gain a plethora of high-fives from the school's most conceited jock species.

Then the second straw was Quinn. That was the obvious. The pregnancy. Puck had feelings for Quinn, which Kurt could understand and accept, but he went about dealing with them in the wrong way. He could've bought her dinner. He could've serenaded her in Glee Club. No. Instead, he used her body weight insecurities as a fucking play. He got her drunk and told her that she wasn't fat and bingo. Puck had unlocked the secret to having sex with Quinn. Without protection. Kurt had stressed this point enough, but Puck had never understood the meaning of it. He slept around with older women before Quinn, so who knows what she might've caught. At Kurt's insistence, Quinn had been getting yearly tests from her doctors. Quinn, whilst sobbing, had assured Kurt that Puck that usually used protection, apart from the time they had slept together, of course. Still, Quinn had wholeheartedly been tested, afraid of Puck lying to her and causing a potentially worse result than her pregnancy.

The third straw was Brittany. Chronologically, she was the first straw, but Kurt only found out about it after Quinn's conception of Beth. Puck used Brittany to feel better about himself, much as he did Kurt. Brittany used deceptive methods around people to get them to leave her alone. She appeared intellectually incapable around others so that they would underestimate her and make it easier for her to protect her friends. Whenever something evil happened, nobody pointed the finger at "sweet, simple, innocent Brittany". She was actually more cunning and thoughtful than she let on to anybody. Puck bullied Brittany about her intelligence and, although it wasn't actually a reflection of her actual intelligence, she took it to heart as a dig at her personal insecurity. Although she wasn't dumb, she didn't get straight A's like Kurt, Quinn and Santana. Sometimes, she felt lesser than her friends, despite their insistences that academic intelligence meant nothing if you weren't a good person. Puck made sure that Brittany knew that she wasn't smart. He spread a rumour that she had brain damage and everybody had believed it. Due to the persona that she had presented to the world, they had no reason not be. Santana had tirelessly defended her, to no avail. Even Santana's threats could not distract the student body. This had hurt Brittany, and resulted in her spending nights in Kurt's arms, sobbing about how she didn't think she was smart enough to graduate, but Kurt assured her that since her interests did not lie within the realms of academics, she didn't have to apply to college to study them. He talked to Brittany about dance schools and helped her look a few that seemed promising. Brittany suddenly had a new plan of attack, and Puck had used that as ammunition. He had said that dance schools were an escape route because "she knew she couldn't graduate being dumber than sand."

Brittany had ignored him, but years of absorbing criticism had left her with a heavy weight pressing against her heart. She bottled everything in and soon it had to come out. This played on Brittany's mind and caused her to lose focus in school. Kurt tutored her in her weakest subjects, Chemistry and Algebra, and she had taught him some things in Biology, her favourite class. Brittany loved animals, and thus her Biology grade was at a constant A. Even Puck couldn't make her feel bad about that.

The fourth straw was Puck's treatment of Tina. The two had barely interacted in Glee Club, so it was a surprise to everyone when Tina arrived at one of Kurt's sleepovers raging about an "arrogant misogynist pig such as Noah Puckerman.

"He can go and die in a hole somewhere because I am so done with his shit!" Tina raged, slamming Kurt's basement-now-bedroom door in a frenzy of anger. Santana, looking up, cocked an eyebrow, severely impressed with the girl's use of invective. Kurt smirked, bemused as to who she was talking about, but please nonetheless. Quinn and Brittany exchanged a concerned glance with each other.

"Come here, T." Kurt beckoned her over and she sunk into his arms gratefully, finding comfort there. She held back sobs as Kurt asked her what was wrong.

"That arrogant misogynist pig! I hate him, Kurt. I'm usually a calm person. I don't hate many people but him I could gladly hit in the balls with a machete." She seethed. Kurt smirked once more, now gleaning the identity of her discussion.

"What's Puckerman done to you, baby?" Kurt stroked her hair soothingly as she released a few sobs, making Quinn wince. She knew only too well what the damage from a Noah Puckerman attack can do to somebody.

"Well you know that painting I've been working on for that national art competition?" With their nods, she continued. "Well the biggest cretin of the century decides to fucking slushy it. The ice and the liquid didn't react well with the ink and the acrylics and it's completely ruined. I've been working on it for five months and it was so close to being complete! This was the only thing my mother has been proud of me for and it's gone. I hate him, Kurt." Tina explained, looking thoroughly downcast. Kurt's face contorted into that of a ferocious demon for a second, before it reverted back to its composed state. Santana did not miss this flicker and she made a mental note to analyse it later on.

"Oh honey, I know how much effort you put into that. It was extraordinary. Don't worry about Puckerman, though. I'm waiting for the right moment and I'll be sorting it out." He patted her hand.

"What are you planning?" Quinn interjected, curious.

"You'll see. Though I'll require your assistance closer to the time."

Ever since that day, Kurt had been waiting for the perfect opening into the destruction of Noah Puckerman.

Kurt himself had been the last straw. Puck's incessant bullying of the only gay kid in Lima had been the breaking point. Kurt had dealt with it for most of his life and he had just instinctively learned to swat him away and ignore him. But, sometimes, what Puck does is impossible to ignore. Sometimes Kurt can't brush him aside with an impeccably timed insult. Sometimes the things Noah Puckerman says can't be retracted with a half-hearted apology in Glee Club. Quinn, Santana, Tina and Brittany all think that Kurt can take whatever Puck does with a pinch a salt, but when walks into Glee Club looking thoroughly upset and furious, they know Puck's gone in too deep and that Kurt's on the warpath.

"But Kurt, what did Puck actually do?" Tina asks, walking quickly to keep up with Kurt's pace.

"Oh, it's nothing. You'll find out later." Kurt bit his lip, trying to maintain his composed mask. Noah Puckerman had crossed many lines with his most recent act of viciousness. There were certain boundaries of bullying and Noah Puckerman had crossed them all. It was entirely verbal, but his words made Kurt feel even more inferior and more useless than he usually did around the jocks. Public humiliation was not lost on his recent endeavour either, as all of the jocks began to agree and the threats bounced around the locker room like excited children hyped up on sugar at a birthday party.

Kurt and Tina carried the pizza and drinks into Kurt's basement, the latter trying his best not to cry. He had been holding it in all day, and a hug from Tina had almost released all of his feelings but had held them all back. He hated being vulnerable around people, even his best friends.

Quinn, Brittany and Santana were already there, knowing that something was wrong. They're best friend intuition told them as much. Brittany was silently seething, rocking back and forth in a foetal position on the floor. She knew something really terrible must have happened for Kurt to be that upset over the phone. Brittany just knew when he was trying his best not to sob. She automatically blamed Noah Puckerman, the primary source of hate in all of their lives.

When they were settled, they all looked at Kurt expectantly.

"Kurt, I'm getting worried. What has he done to you?" Brittany said, her concern evident in her tone.

Kurt closed his eyes and exhaled shakily, not ready to tell the story. "He…he used to be just a bully. Now he's a monster. You know that jock mentality where if one thinks something, they all agree and support each other? It's really a bitch.

"Yesterday, after Cheerio practice, you know since Figgins made that big stink about you guys smuggling me into the girls' locker rooms even though I'm a hero in there? I'm being forced to change with the boys as 'no exceptions shall be made for any students' even though I'm not welcome in there. Well," Kurt wiped a stray tear from his face. Quinn made a sudden movement to go and hug him, but Santana pulled her back.

"He needs this." She whispered.

"Puck didn't like my sudden appearance in there when the entire football team was changing. This blonde guy came over to talk to me and I've never seen him before in my life but apparently I lured him over to 'molest and convert' him. He dragged the guy away and shoved me against a wall. I hurt my back but he seemed to enjoy that. He told me that I shouldn't be trying to turn the football team because they all hate me. The blonde guy seemed to want to help, but the other jocks had him pinned against a locker and they were whispering against his ear. And then…" Kurt broke off. Tina rubbed soothing lines up and down his back, encouraging him.

"You're in a safe place, Kurt. You can tell us."

"He-He said that all of the guys should get together and…and rape me because apparently it's a lesson that I need to be taught. I need to be t-taught how forcing myself on somebody feels. Why do they think that I'm a r-rapist?" Kurt's gates broke. He began to cry. Brittany launched herself at him, nestling his head into her neck and stroking his hair softly as he sobbed. Quinn looked sympathetic but knew that Tina and Brittany could comfort him better than she could. Santana sat trembling with rage. She would need to sort Noah Puckerman out in a way that he would never be able to recover from.

She looked once at Quinn and that was all that they needed to do to concoct a vicious plan that was very Regina George-like. Strip away Puck's resources. Everything he used to make himself popular and feared would be gone.

Noah Puckerman was going down for making her best boy cry and saying such a foul thing. The five would address it later, but Kurt needed time to cry about it. He hadn't let himself show any signs of weakness in front of the jocks because of obvious reasons, but now he could let himself cry and break down now that he was around his girls.

Santana smirked slightly as she thought of what the quintet had in store for Lima's resident badass. It was not going to be pretty.

Chapter Text

When evaluating the best things about having four devoted best friends, Kurt often decided upon the fact that they would all be there for him no matter when time he needed them or why. If he was simply in need of an impromptu sleepover, they would arrive at his house with snacks within the hour.

This was the case this time, but with a slightly different agenda.

First on the agenda, revenge.

Santana and Brittany arrived together, as usual. They were both deeply in love with each other, but extremely reluctant to profess their feelings. People's constant undermining of Brittany made her extremely self-conscious. Santana's own doubts about her sexuality and personality caused her to be cautious around Brittany, careful not to reveal too much.

Tina was the first to arrive, waiting on a text from Artie, who hadn't responded to her in three days. It was Christmas break and Tina had tried to call Artie's cell seven times in the past two days. After some ranting to Kurt, she had settled on waiting until he called her. She hadn't heard anything from him. Kurt took this to mean that he simply didn't care about his relationship with such a wonderful girl and would be having words with Arthur Abrams when they reconvened for the next semester of school.

Quinn arrived last, having some prior engagements to reschedule. Kurt didn't mind her lateness simply because she had dropped whatever she was doing to come to a sleepover.

"It's fine, Kurt. You guys are my best friends; I would do anything for any of you." Quinn said, skipping into the basement which Kurt had converted into his bedroom with a big smile. Santana and Brittany smiled back, but Tina was reluctant to, something that Kurt did not miss. Kurt was very perceptive when it came to his best friend and there was not much that he missed in terms of facial expressions and movements and tones of voice. He had spent so long observing people that it was hard to not analyse them.

"So, let's get down to business. The reason why you are all assembled here now is because of the obvious threat to our happiness. The vile gangrene on the toenail of life. The mustard stain on every Marc Jacobs sweater. Noah Puckerman. He must be stopped and fast, before he destroys anybody else. Quinn, what he did to you was kind of irreversible after a certain time limit, so we can't do anything about that apart from cold, hard revenge." Kurt smirked.

"Wanky." Santana muttered from next to him.

"Definitely not. Apologies to you, Unholy Trinity, but your lapse in good taste was definitely apparent when deciding to sleep with that cretin. Tina and I have kept a clean slate in that area, something which shouldn't be too hard to maintain." Tina smiled uncertainly. Quinn frowned at her, but dismissed it.

"Anyway, before Santana's irrelevant interruption, I believe I have formulated the cruellest rumours, plans and strategies to hit Puckerman right where it hurts. After we're done with him, no woman or man is going to want to touch him in any way. Nobody is going to want to speak to him, even the jocks. For all of this to work, we are all going to have to be completely honest and open with each other. I trust you all with my life and I hope you do the same with each other. This plan may involve us being quite complicit at some points, but that's not relevant just yet. So, before we strike, we must band together and become solid. We should use this weekend to cement that extra bond between us all and make sure we're tightly knit and on point. Any questions?"

"When you say complicit…" Tina began, not entirely sure that she wanted to get in legal trouble just so she could rub something in Noah Puckerman's face. Ew no, bad images.

"Nothing that won't be meticulously planned to the last detail by yours truly. Don't worry, T, you'll be fine. The Ivy's will still be in a position to consider each of us after this, no smudging of our records."

Brittany instinctively stiffened at Kurt's mention of the Ivy League Colleges. She knew that the other four were planning on attending them in some form or another. She also doubted that they would even take notice of her unless she stunned everybody with an SAT score that even Artie would be envious of. Brittany figured that she could always ask Kurt to study with her, as she knew that he would do it in a heartbeat, but she wanted her scores to be reflective of her own accomplishments and intelligence, not just what wisdom Kurt imparted onto her.

She reckoned that if she studied hard enough, she could get a good score, but not one that would make her considered by the Ivy's. Her GPA was decent, but not stellar, as the rest of them had. She would be extremely happy for them if they all attended Ivy League schools, but she would not be able to contain her jealousy and mild resentment if she didn't.

She wanted to become a veterinarian, so a Veterinary Sciences course seemed applicable but they were also highly competitive. She would definitely need Kurt's help with her application. He was looking to go on and study at Harvard Medical School, something which everybody knew that he could do. He was certainly intellectual and mature enough to take it on. Many misinterpreted Kurt's character and expected him to be studying musical theatre or fashion design or something related to those fields. Those who truly knew him knew that they were passions, but medicine was something he had been considering since his mother died. He wanted to help people and prevent people from feeling the way that he did when he lost his mother.

Santana's voice interrupted her thoughts.

"That's not to say that if the opportunity for illegality rose that we wouldn't snap it up promptly and ruin him that way." She supplied helpfully. Kurt's eyes narrowed slightly, but he nodded all the same.

"I have ways of escaping arrest; I'm a ninja like that."

The other just nodded, accepting the fact that Kurt was incredibly sneaky and could probably talk his way out of anything he needed to.

"Kurt!" Burt called from upstairs. "Could you come here for a second, please?" Kurt nodded curtly.

"Amuse yourselves, won't you? This shouldn't take too long." Kurt apologised and dashed upstairs to check what his father wanted from him.

As soon as they were alone, Santana spun to face Tina.

"Alright, Girl Chang, ever since this little group started hanging out, you've been glaring at me when you think Kurt is not looking and noticing. I know there's something you want to say to me so let's talk about that. Out with it." Santana raised an eyebrow expectantly.

She knew that Tina didn't like her a great deal, but that was probably because she didn't know her. Santana figured that Tina was wary of her being around Kurt, but that was easily rectified.

"Fine, like Kurt said, it's truth time."

Tina readied herself.

"With an honest disclosure policy intact, I feel that I have to draw attention to my concerns with you, Santana. I'm not going to be a Mercedes Jones and dictate who Kurt can be friends with, because that's just stupid, but I'm always worried and concerned that you're going to end up hurting Kurt in some way. Besides Brittany, you've alienated most of your friends in some way. What makes you think that you're not going to do the same to Kurt?" Tina challenged her.

Santana smirked. Alright, Girl Chang, she thought, let's play.

"The simple fact is that you know nothing about me or my friendship with Kurt. That's a good thing. It means I can explain it to you myself.

"Kurt is good for me. He's very good for me, in fact. He brings out the best parts of me and tames the worst parts. Finding Kurt is one of the best things to happen to me. He gets me in a way that only Brittany and Quinn have ever come close to. We're not kindred spirits or anything, but we're alike. Very. So he understands the way that my mind works.

"He makes me a much better person. A person that I can stand to look in the mirror at and say 'You know what, I am a good person'. Rather than hating myself for always having to put people down or keep secrets, I can be happy with who I am. I don't think that Glee has done that for me; but Kurt has. He's so patient and understanding with me. At first it drove me crazy, but I can get on board with it now."

Tina nodded along with her explanation, but still remained quite sceptical.

"I know what you're thinking, Tina. 'Is this really Santana Lopez?' or some shit like that. It's me. Before I met Kurt, I would've been still insulting the likes of you and Wheels…I mean Artie. I'm not saying that Kurt has made me a nice person, because even he has stated that that is a challenge to difficult for even him. All I'm saying is that I owe him for making me more confident in myself. I owe him a lot for all of his time and his good advice. So if anybody fucks with him, I'll be there to whack them down and make them bleed. And hurt him myself? Well, that is something that I would never, ever consider doing. If I ever do, it'll be the biggest mistake I ever make and I hope he forgives me for that. I have to also apologise to you, Tina. I haven't been fair to you in the past. I would never have done with Puck did, but I've been pretty awful to you and Kurt has made me see that. So, for that among other things, I'm sorry. Ugh, I hate saying those words, but I do mean it."

Tina regarded Santana's monologue with wide eyes. She had not expected such a revelation.

"I actually like Kurt. And everybody knows that I don't exactly like many people. But Kurt's special. And I like him."

Quinn blinked, noting something worth remembering about what Santana had said.

She had revealed that she and Kurt were close and she liked him, but nothing about Tina. She hadn't made anything clear about the other girl. In fact, none of them really expressed sincere liking to the others bar Kurt. Santana and Brittany were obviously in love, so they didn't count. Tina hadn't mentioned anything about Brittany, Santana or Quinn herself. Quinn and Santana were friends, as the former was with Brittany, but she didn't really know Tina as, Quinn suspected, Brittany didn't either. Quinn realised then that Tina Cohen-Chang was the missing link in all of this.

She was very much a part of the group, but only really so because of Kurt. The others didn't really know her. Quinn mentally planned to rectify this, but the timing wasn't quite right just yet for such a conversation.

Meanwhile, Kurt had timed everything perfectly. He was stood listening outside the basement door to Santana's explanation with a wide smile on his face. Santana rarely talked about anybody who wasn't Brittany with such fondness and he was genuinely flattered that she considered him with such high regard. Waiting a few beats to make his re-entrance, Kurt pushed open the door and re-joined his girls for a much-needed night of connections and planning.

Half an hour later, Kurt and the girls were discussing a possible school musical for their junior year.

Santana had rather reluctantly suggested Chicago, but only if Quinn and herself were Roxie and Velma. Kurt and Brittany had both praised their casting choices, with Tina adding her desire to be Mama, rather than the generic choice of Mercedes.

Brittany had suggested they try and pull off a production of Wicked but it was, to their immense surprise, Kurt who had shot that particular idea down.

"Not that that wouldn't be completely fabulous, but I just know that Mr Schuester would be cliché and awful and give Elphaba to Rachel without giving anybody else a look-in." He had complained. Tina had nodded in acquiescence with his point, but Quinn had frowned.

"I thought that you would be gunning for Glinda anyway, Kurt. You're certainly pretty enough to play her." As soon as she finished, Santana closed her eyes and held her breath, watching Kurt's reaction. By Brittany's reaction, Quinn had known that it was the wrong thing to say.

Kurt had paled considerably and he had swallowed audibly.

"Excuse me, I think I have to get a glass of water." Kurt whispered before fleeing from the room. Santana just sat there, biting her lip. Brittany almost moved, but Tina was the quickest, following Kurt up the stairs and into the ground floor bathroom.

Before she entered, Kurt had cradled himself into a ball in between the toilet and wall, his heads planted into his crossed arms. His knees were drawn up against his chest and Tina could plainly hear the sobs escaping from his throat.

She knocked on the door hesitantly, but pushed her way in nonetheless.

"Kurt, what's wrong?" Tina said, worry lacing her voice.

"Oh, it's nothing I'm being stupid."

"Kurt, don't lie to me, please. I respect you far too much to accept that."

He sniffled. "Fine, I'm not okay, Tina."

"Was it what Quinn said?"

He just nodded.

Neither Kurt nor Tina knew that Quinn, Santana and Brittany were listening slightly outside the door. All three girls were completely silent, waiting to hear what Kurt would reveal to Tina.

Chapter Text

"Kurt, talk to me. I'm here for you."

Kurt squeezed his eyes shut, letting the last wet tear roll down his usually composed face and blew his nose. "Come in, Tina."

The girl swung the door open and shut it just as quickly, embracing Kurt in what could only be depicted as the tightest of bear hugs upon seeing his state. "Oh, honey. You're not okay, are you?"

"Not really. Quinn just inadvertently confirmed everything I had thought about myself and created some new theories all in one fell swoop."

"Was it the comment about you being pretty enough to play Glinda?" Tina enquired, noting the point when what little remaining colour had faded from Kurt's cheeks. The boy just nodded despondently.

"I already know that Quinn meant no malice when she chose her words. It's what Glinda is. Glinda is pretty. Beautiful, even. But that's exactly it.

"I'm 'pretty', Tina. That's the extent of it. I'm pretty. I'm cute. Adorable. Rarely am I called handsome or gorgeous or beautiful or God forbid somebody thinks I'm hot." Tina began to interject with vehemence, but Kurt held up a hand to stop her.

"I know exactly what you're about to say and I don't want you to. You may mean it, it may even be true, but I'll never shake the suspicion that you're saying it because we're friends. It's just that every compliment I receive about my appearance is a stereotypically feminine adjective. I'm not a girl, Tina, and I don't want to be a girl. I'm happy with my gender. But I just can't help feeling like I'm not desirable because I resemble more of a female than a male." Kurt exhaled deeply, allowing Tina to speak.

"Kurt Hummel, you need to wake up and look at yourself in the mirror. You are hot. Very much so. The only reason you don't have like nineteen guys falling to their knees just to date you is because we live in a Podunk piece of shit town that only knows how to taint perfection with its disease-ridden Neanderthals roaming the place. And because we're so close I can be completely honest with you. You're not everyone's type. You don't have the easy good looks like Finn. That's true. But I wouldn't worry about that, Kurt. Finn's good looks are boring. There's nothing much after you get past his handsome face. With you, there's so much to look at. Your eyes are literally a mixture of colours I don't think have a name yet. Your skin is so perfect that I'm so extremely jealous. Your hair, your clothes, your legs, these are all things that I would kill to have. You put your self-esteem in the hands of other people, Kurt, and because they've fucked you over royally, you've convinced yourself that you're unlovable. I know what that's like, I really do, but you need to reflect on how you and the people who love you see you."

"Thank you for everything you just said, Tina. That's a sincerely valid theory, but not one that I personally agree. The jocks don't cause my self-loathing and doubt, they amplify it. My own personal views come from what I see in the mirror and how I've treated people in the past. I'm not a good person, and probably will never be, but I guess that's me and I should be true to it. Anyway, I apologise for being so sombre on a night where we should all be vibrant and upbeat. Shall we return to the others, who I presume are listening just outside the door? Between Santana's disposition for knowing everything about everyone and the concern of the other two, they'll all be crowded around the door, trying to listen to everything I'm saying. This shouldn't happen again."

Tina winced at Kurt's last utterance, as though he was warning himself against emotion and showing it. She knew that Kurt was quite a private person, contrary to popular belief, and never liked people seeing how without his air of confidence and extravagance. But she never thought that he was scared of appearing weak and inferior even in the presence of his friends. That was something that he nobody should have to suffer through and she was determined to change.


The Unholy Trinity scuttled away from the door and resumed their original positions in the basement, acting as though nothing had happened. Though Brittany was the one to blow it, feeling the need to give Kurt reassurance.

"We were all just discussing how hot we thought you were, weren't we San?" Santana exhaled deeply and Quinn palmed her face. Kurt giggled, stroking Brittany's hair.

"I don't mind that you guys were listening. It just means I don't have to repeat myself. I apologise for the interjection. Now, let's get back down to business. I was thinking about my plan to exterminate Puckerman from everything, right? But how are four people going to take down one of the town's most well-known criminals and whores? Easy. We stick together." Santana nodded in acquiescence.

"No matter what. Even if we begin to hate each other before this is finished, we remain as a cohesive unit until Puckerman has been sank. Any divergence from our ultimate goal will be met with suspicions of weakness and naivety and we need to appear strong and focused, not to mention completely fierce."

"That won't happen, Santana. We're a very close group, I don't see us drifting apart from each other. We know too much about each other to remain as individuals." Santana gaze flickered to Tina, who blinked back casually at her, knowing why she was being looked at. Besides Kurt, the other three knew nothing about her. That would take some bonding missions without Kurt in the mix for them to get to know her as a person. She suspected that she was the loose link of the group; the one to be left behind on a four-person excursion. She didn't mind that, she wasn't Mercedes. She didn't command that people be friends with her and only her. It bothered her only fractionally that the others knew nothing about her. It was that they had never made the effort to. They were nice enough to her, but didn't really show any incentive to grow closer to her. Santana's gaze implied to Tina that she was about to remedy that in order for the harem to truly thrive.

Tina was proven correct when Kurt's shift at Hummel's Tires and Lube began. Kurt changed into his coveralls and left the basement, asking them to remain seated whilst he worked and "talk amongst yourselves." As soon as Kurt left the room and for the second time that day, Santana rounded on Tina.

"As Liberace was saying, we need to be the ultimate weapon against the school and any that stand in our way. So, Tina, you're the one that we know nothing about. No matter who's lapse in judgement that was, it needs to be sorted. So, just who are you, Tina Cohen-Chang?" Santana questioned.

"That's a pretty hard-hitting question, wouldn't you think Santana?" Tina giggled. Santana shrugged.

"Well, I grew up in Ohio, I was adopted, and I have no idea where my birth parents are. I presume they're Asian, because my adoptive parents are both White Americans. I grew up here and it was quite lonely. I didn't really have many friends besides Kurt until high school. I've always known that I loved singing but I've never been confident, as you can probably tell. I faked my stutter last year because I thought it would let people divert their attention from me. It was like a shield, a defence mechanism of sorts. I know that it was wrong to lie about it, but it helped. People didn't bully me, they just left me alone. Eventually I decided that that was better. I saw how Kurt was treated and I didn't want that. I figured it was better to be in the shadows and miserable than in the spotlight and miserable.

"Apart from that, there's not a lot to tell. I like reading and historical fiction. I love old movies and everything about the Jazz Age. And contrary to popular belief, Tina Lola Cohen-Chang is not a vampire."

Santana smirked at the last comment as the three drew in this brief description of their friend and pondered on it. Quinn considered something and spoke up.

"So what's with you and Artie these days? You haven't seemed exactly couple-like."

Tina sighed. "I love him, or at least to the extent of what I believe love to be. I think he loves me, at least he tells me he does. Kurt advised me to wait for him to call me rather than calling him myself. I'm always the first one to talk in a conversation. If I don't he never will. I'm pretty sure he's been playing Halo for the past 300 hours. Nobody's talked to him. I even Facebook messaged Finn to see if he had heard from him. Finn then was confused of who I was for a minute. Finn hasn't heard from him either. I called his mother to check if he was alive, which he is. Mrs Abrams said that he would get back to me once he was "less busy". I knew that was utter bullshit and that he couldn't be bothered with me."

"So why don't you break up with him?" Brittany suggested. "If he's not giving you the time of day that you deserve, then fuck him." Brittany seethed, not liking the way that robot was treating her friend.

"I wish it was that simple. I want to. I know that I should. But every time I see him, I inhale, ready to bitch him out and tell him that we're done, I end up talking about Fro-Yo or the latest Glee Club meeting. I can't do this."

"So you want to, but you can't? Well first day back to school, we'll be right behind you when you do it. I know you may love him, but the little shit is treating you like vermin, Tee." Santana explained, the nickname slipping out. Tina rather thought she liked it. After all, Artie didn't have any cute pet names for her. "Look, I'm not going to pretend like we've been best friend for ten years like Kurt and Britt, but I care about you and you only deserve the best man. Artie is being sub-par and anyone enrolled in the KHHHB needs only the finest attachment possible."

"Is that an order?" Tina smirked.

"Only if you fly that way." Santana stated, purring slightly.

Tina shivered, something strange crawling up her back. Blushing, she looked down. Santana's eyes widened, discovering something that she doubted Tina wanted shared with them all just yet. She would announce it when she was perfectly ready and Santana knew that. Quinn and Brittany were oblivious to what was happening. Both Santana and Tina wondered if Kurt knew. Possibly, he did. Santana made a mental note to talk to Tina about this when they were alone.

If Santana knew anything about the KHHHB, it was that she was very much in it for the long haul and wouldn't rest until they were Queens of Everything. It was just what they all deserved. First stop, Noah Puckerman and his downfall.

Chapter Text

Quinn stood and took centre stage of the basement, turning to them all. "So! What is one thing that we all have in common with Puck?"

Kurt scowled at the insinuation of being compared with him, but shrugged. "We're all in Glee Club." Quinn nodded and continued.

"That means that we need to show him that we're a force to be reckoned with in Glee Club. Then he'll be hit with the full force of our fury all over the school." The blonde smirked.

Brittany raised a hand pointedly. "But how are we going to do that? We don't rule Glee Club. Rachel rules Glee Club. We're just the background ornaments." Tina pouted and nodded sadly. Santana shook her head.

"Rachel cares the most about Glee Club, that's probably true. But she only achieves success in there with Finn. She only has one ally. With the five of us assembling the perfect number, we can wipe the floor with Finchel once and for all."

Tina cocked her head slightly. "I think you're forgetting Mr Schuester." Santana scowled, rolling her eyes at the thought of trying to sway Mr Schuester's preferences from his usual setup.

"We could revisit last year's minorities discussion." Santana suggested.

"That would mean getting Sylvester involved again." Quinn supplied helpfully.

Kurt thought for a second. "We could wait until the next song is given to Rachel by default and simultaneously stand up and demand an audition. If Schue refuses, we'll get my dad to intervene again, but if not, we'll pull out a number that's so flawlessly performed that he'll have no choice but to give us a spot at Sectionals this year." The other four nodded vehemently at that suggestion and began mentally scanning their iTunes contents for possible songs. "And I know that there's only one artist we can even consider for this. Beyonce."

They squealed excitedly. Tina scrolled through her phone. Kurt continued speaking. "We'll decide that later, but we have to think about recruits as well. We're one member short now that Matt's gone."

"Does anyone know how he is?" Brittany said, having formed a friendship with the boy prior to his departure.

Kurt shook his head. "I think only Mike keeps in touch with him. I text him every now and then, but we're not nearly as close as those two are."

Quinn's eyes widened. "You and Matt are friends?"

"It's quite easy to have missed our friendship amongst the haze of drama in New Directions, but yes, we have a great respect for each other."

"Did you like him?" Santana asked. Kurt knew that she wasn't assuming that he had feelings for every straight friend he had, but that she had noticed something more with him that the rest of them hadn't.

"There was a time where I thought I could fall for Matt, but the time passed. He moved away and that was that. Anything to get over Finn."

Quinn looked away awkwardly. "I thought it would've been easier after what went down during Gaga week."

Santana, Britt and Tina looked with confusion and Kurt shot Quinn a warning glare. "Quinn."

"Sorry. He called me wanting to talk about it. He knew that you and I were close and wanted to know if I had mentioned it. When I said no, he explained everything and took everything I threw at him. I properly chewed him out."

"What did he do, Kurt?" Brittany asked protectively. A year ago, Brittany would have been hurt that Kurt didn't tell her what had happened between him and Finn, but as she was maturing, she realised that there were things that people wanted to keep private and Kurt was quite a private person himself.

Kurt sighed, knowing that his comments about openness would seem false if he wasn't fully honest with them. He took them through what happened in the basement and everything that followed with his dad and the apology. Kurt had to clutch Brittany's and Santana's hands to stop them from charging upstairs to Finn's room and destroying his belongings.

"It's okay. In hindsight, I may have come on a little strong. Granted, I don't think I deserved that word, but there we go."

"Kurt, did Finn ever tell you to back off? Or did he endure your advances in silence, making you think that he might have liked the attention?" Tina wanted to clarify something.

"He never said no exactly, he just avoided the issue sometimes. It doesn't matter though, I was creepy."

"Kurt, you went after a guy you liked. We've all done it before, there's nothing wrong about it. Tina wasn't creepy when she was flirting with Artie. Finn himself wasn't creepy when going after Quinn and me. It's a natural thing. Finn found it creepy because you're a gay, and it's a cruel thing for him to do, making you feel like you violated him or whatever." Santana added kindly.

"When you put it that way, you're right. Anyway, let's drop the issue. I don't like to dwell on the past. Where were we?"

"Recruiting." Brittany supplied with a smile.

"Ah, yes. I say that we find another talented Cheerio amongst the fray or a jock. We should perform a number in a public setting to try and garner attention. Our fabulous flexibility and vocal ranges should have people signing up left right and centre."

"Beyonce again?" Tina smirked.

"I was thinking something more homophobe friendly. Like Yeah by Usher. It's pretty old now, but it works just as well."

They nodded In agreement, praising Kurt's musical taste.

Quinn clapped her hands together. "Right, let's get down to business."

Evolution of Beyonce by Pentatonix sung by Kurt, Santana, Quinn, Brittany and Tina

(Santana and Tina)
Can you pay my bills
Can you pay my telephone bills
Can you pay my automo-bills
If you did then maybe we could chill
I don't think you do
So, you and me are through

(All)
Say my name, say my name
If no one is around you
Say baby I love you
If you ain't runnin' games
Ooh

(Kurt and Brittany)
Ladies leave yo men at home
The club is full of ballas and they pockets full grown
And all you fellas leave yo girl with her friends
'Cause it's 11:30 and the club is jumpin', jumpin'

(Kurt and Santana)
Boys say you got a girl?
Yeah it's true you got a man
But the party ain't goin' stop
So lets make it hot hot!

(Quinn with Santana and Brittany)
Now that you're out of my life
I'm so much better
You thought that I'd be weak without you
But I'm stronger
You thought that I'd be broke without you

But I'm richer

(Kurt)
Because my body's too bootylicious for you babe.

(All)
Popah ye da hoo da deh
Popah ye da hoo da deh
Da hoo pah yeh hoo pah yeh hoo pah
pow pow pow

(Brittany)
I look and stare so deep in your eyes
I touch on you more and more every time

(Tina)
When you leave, I'm begging you not to go
Call your name two or three times in a row

(Kurt and Quinn)
Got me looking so crazy right now,
your love's got me looking so crazy right now

(Santana)
Got me looking so crazy right now,
Your touch got me looking so crazy right now.

(All)
Looking so crazy in love's
Got me looking, got me looking so crazy in love

(Quinn)
Baby boy, you stay on my mind
Fulfill my fantasies
I think about you all the time

(All)
Rhythm's got me feeling crazy
New Directions came to party

(Kurt)
Oh boy you looking like you like what you see
Won't you come over and check up on it, I'm gone let you work up on it

(Tina)
Ladies let em check up on it
Check on me tonight!

(Santana)
To the left, to the left
Everything you own in the box to the left.
In the closet that's my stuff, yes
If I bought it please don't touch.

(Quinn and Brittany)
You must not know about me,
you must not know about me,
I can have another you in a minute.

(Tina)
So don't you ever for a second get to thinking you're irreplaceable.

(Brittany)
Mission one: I'mma put this on
When he see me in this dress, I'mma get me some, hey

(Kurt)
Mission two: gotta make that call
Tell 'em get the bottles poppin' when they play my song, hey

(Santana)
Mission three: got my three best friends
Like we do it all the time, we gon' do it again, hey

(Quinn)
Mission four: got the vintage Rolls
Drop a couple hundreds, tell 'em leave it at the door

(Tina)
Let me upgrade ya (let me upgrade ya)

(Kurt)
Let me upgrade ya (let me upgrade ya)

(Santana)
Let me upgrade ya (move your body)
(time to let me upgrade ya)

(Kurt)
If I were a boy, I think I could understand, ooh,
how it feels to love a girl,
I swear I'd be a better

(Santana, Brittany, Tina and Quinn)
Oh oh oh oh oh oh oh oh oh oh oh oh
[2x]
(Shawty, what ya'll name is?)

(Kurt and Brittany)
I'm a, I'm a a Diva
I'm a, I'm a a Diva (Hey)

(Kurt, Brittany and Tina)
I'm a, I'm a a Diva
I'm a, I'm a a Diva
[2x]

(Quinn and Santana)
I've got a big ego,
Such a huge ego, oh oh oh oh oh oh oh oh oh oh oh.

(All)
You say you like my bag and the color of my nails
You can see that I got it goin' on (I've got a big ego)
I wanna make sure you remember me
So I'ma leave my number on your video phone

(Kurt and Santana)
My guilty pleasure-I ain't going nowhere
You can be my sweet dream or a beautiful nightmare,
either way I don't want to wake up from you.

(Quinn and Brittany)
Who run the world? (Girls)
Who run the world? (Girls)

(Santana and Tina)
Who run the world? (Girls)
Who run the world? (Girls)

(Santana)
I'll be your baby, promise not to let you go.
Love you like crazy...

(Kurt and Quinn)
I'm the best thing you never had.

(Brittany)
(Bring the beat in)

(Tina and Quinn)
Baby it's you, you're the one I love, you're the one I need, you're the only

(Kurt)
Thing I see, baby, baby it's you
You're the one that gives your all

(Santana)
You're the one I can always call
When i need to make everything stop

(All)
Finally you put my love on top

(Kurt)
10 - We're dressing to the
9 - You pick me up at

(Tina)
8 - Makes me feel so lucky
7 - You take me in your

(Quinn)
6 - We be making love in
5 - Still the one I do this

(Brittany)
4 - I'm trying to make a
3 - From that
2 - He still the 1

(Santana and Brittany)
(Oh)
I been on, I been on, I been on
Tell me who gone take me off
Take me off, take me off, take me off

(Kurt)
You know the way I walk
Because I walk with vengeance
And they listen to me when I talk
'Cause I ain't pretending

(Quinn)
But I understand
Just where I'm going
I know the woman
I know who I am
It's about time I show it

(Tina)
(Ooh)
Hit me like a ray of sun
Burning through my darkest night
You're the only one that I want
Think I'm addicted to your light.

(Kurt)
I was here

(Tina)
(halo)

(Quinn)
I lived

(Tina)
(I can see your halo)

(Santana)
I loved.

(All)
I was here

(Tina)
(halo)

(Brittany)
Halo.

(All)
You're everything I need and more
It's written all over your face
Baby, I can feel your halo
Pray it won't fade away

The five stopped singing at exactly the same thing thanks to Kurt's conducting and immediately cracked huge, matching smiles. They had Glee Club wrapped around their adorably manicured fingers.

"Okay, we are going to slay Glee Club with this. Rachel is going to be sitting there not knowing what punched her in the face. Ooh, can we punch her in the face? I happily volunteer!"

Tina frowned. "I thought we just wanted to conquer the club, not physically assault its members."

"Oh, Tina. We could just kill two birds with one stone. Knock Rachel Berry the fuck out and then rule the club."

"Seriously though, that number was insane." Quinn beamed. Kurt raised an eyebrow. He had a good feeling about the competition slots that year.

A sudden knock at the door surprised them all. Burt peered down into the basement.

"Kurt! Someone's here for you! They look pretty pissed off, too. Get up here now!"

Kurt frowned slightly. Who was stopping by at that time of night?

Chapter Text

The unhappy visitor barged into the entrance of the house, not at all happy with the night's events so far. Kurt scowled at the rudeness that had just taken place, but rolled his eyes when he realised that it was nothing other than what he had expected. He hadn't foresaw an intrusion on their night, but he figured a meltdown was coming sooner or later.

"Hello, Mercedes."

"Kurt, you better tell me what the fuck is going on right now before I cut a bitch."

"Oh, Mercedes, you and I both know that your threats of physical violence are just that. You would never inflict pain onto somebody. Although that's only because you're scared of retaliation."

As if on cue, Brittany, Quinn, Santana and Tina ascended from the basement, hearing Mercedes Jones' shrill shrieking from by the door.

"So it's true! They're all here! Kurt, I thought you and I were best friends yet I wasn't even invited!"

Kurt sighed, despondently. "Mercedes, I knew this time would come. Please make your way down to the basement. It appears that we have some things to discuss." Kurt nodded to the girls, who scattered back into Kurt's bedroom, followed by Mercedes as Kurt pulled up the rear.

"Mercedes. The full truth of this little tale is that you and I are not best friends. We're not even close friends, really."

"Okay, you're insane, white boy. You're my best friend."

"When's my birthday?" Kurt raised an eyebrow, smirking. Santana shared his facial expression, as did Quinn. They all knew that Mercedes didn't actually know and that she would come up with a guess that would be so completely wrong that they would all laugh. Even Tina, who was usually pretty respectful to people.

"October 12th?" Mercedes' tone justified that she did not even nearly know.

"My birthday," Kurt sighed, "is on July 14th. I had a party last year. You were there, Mercedes."

"I knew that, boo. I just forgot."

Brittany had had enough. She had known Kurt most of her life and she was not about to let him be treated badly by Mercedes Jones. "Stop the lies, Mercedes. You're offending everybody."

"W-What?"

"You heard me perfectly. I know you have this insane desire to have a gay male best friend that will tell you what outfits look good and when your makeup looks good, but Kurt doesn't deserve such objectifying treatment."

She continued with a raging tirade of statements that Santana and Kurt were so impressed with.

"Kurt is so much more than his sexuality. He is loving, intelligent, talented, hilarious, independent and does not deserve such a shitty friend that you have proved to be. The fact that you even showed up here demanding an invite to a sleepover should show you just as much."

Kurt held up a hand politely to show Brittany's spiel. "Speaking of such, how did you know they were here?"

Santana held up her phone. "Facebook status. I told the world about how much fun we were having."

"You planned this." Kurt stated, knowing that Santana would have done anything to catch Mercedes being territorial and selfish. He commended her plan but questioned her timing.

"And yet you're friends with Satan, somebody who has countlessly gone out of her way to insult us."

Kurt chuckled. "And you're completely lovely to her? You insult her just as much, Mercedes, so don't play that game with me."

"If anyone's playing games, Kurt, it's you. You made me think we were friends, when secretly you've got your own exclusive set of friends behind my back."

"Do you even hear yourself, Mercedes?" Tina interrupted, Santana nodding at her backbone. "You said 'behind my back'. Like Kurt has to check with to see if he can have friends. Just so you know, Kurt and Brittany have been best friends since the age of seven. And here you are, not even knowing they spoke to each other, surprised that Kurt has friends besides you!"

Quinn chuckled to herself. Mercedes glared at her fiercely.

"What's got you so amused?!"

"Oh, nothing. It's just that you're trying to force your way into this group. You wouldn't fit in with the mould, Mercedes. One, I'm not entirely sure I even like you. Two, you're too demanding."

"So you're turning your back on me as well? After everything I did for you!"

Quinn pursed her lips and nodding, knowing that would come up. She would always be grateful to Mercedes for letting her live at her house during the pregnancy, but she couldn't keep using it as reasons to make Quinn feel guilty. "Mercedes, you know that I'll always be grateful to you for letting me inside your home for those weeks leading up to Beth's birth. You know that. But it was you that severed our tie. We were close. But what you said that night really changed everything. And you thought Kurt was your friend."

Kurt frowned. It was the first he heard of something like this. And Kurt knew everything about McKinley. That was his trademark. He was a gossip ninja, for Gucci's sake! "Quinn?" If it was about him, he wanted to know.

"I really shouldn't say. I'm not at liberty to divulge such information."

"Mercedes?"

"Quinn shouldn't have said anything. Keep your slutty mouth shut in the future, Fabray!"

Santana scowled at Mercedes and stood up. "No me gusta! Qué chingados! Vete a la verga ruca!"

Kurt held up a hand. "Santana. Mercedes, I'll ignore what you just said to Quinn on the condition that you tell me what you said regarding me that Quinn politely decided to leave to you."

Mercedes sighed and folded her arms.

"You have to tell him, Mercedes." Tina soothed. Santana tapped her arm and shook her head.

"No being nice. This is part of the plan." Santana whispered. Tina nodded, interested to see where it all went.

"Fine. It's not like it's going to lose me any favour at this point."

"I'm waiting." Kurt shrugged, irritated by Mercedes' audacity.

Another sigh from Mercedes. "It was during Gaga week." Kurt instantly stiffened. Nothing good could ever have come from those words. Santana was ready to strike if necessary. She didn't think that it would be thought. Kurt had this. Brittany was just ready to console her best friend in case Mercedes said something cruel like she was so used to doing.

"I can't. Quinn, you do it."

Quinn had no problem with that. Kurt knew that she hadn't thought the same. She was perfectly fine with shoving Mercedes in a metaphorical ditch. "Well, Mercedes was the perfect friend to you. She didn't realise that we were friends, you see, and thought I shared her views. I didn't…"

Flashback: Sophomore Year

Mercedes crossed the room, scrubbing off her Gaga makeup. It had been an amazing performance from the girls and Kurt, but the day had been darkened somewhat with outside events. Kurt had shown up to the second Glee rehearsal in the worst mood Mercedes had seen him in since 'Pink Houses'-gate. When she had asked him what was wrong, he had declined to answer. She just shrugged it off. He was probably being melodramatic anyway.

"Quinn, did you notice something wrong with Kurt today?"

Quinn quickly decided to play this tactically. Mercedes still didn't know that she and Kurt were friends. Quinn was in no hurry at all to tell her.

"No, I don't really pay much attention to him, if I'm honest." She wasn't being honest. She figured that God owed her one and would let these little lies slide.

"You're probably right to do so." Quinn frowned.

"What'd you mean?"

"Well, he's probably just overreacting. I mean, sure he gets bullied by the jocks. They push him into lockers but all of us get bullied. It's like Kurt wants to be picked on by the football team. Maybe he likes the attention, however negative it may be." Quinn hummed noncommittally. She was really interested to see Mercedes' true colours.

"Or maybe he's just depressed about Finn. Maybe he finally realised that he has absolutely zero chance with Finn. You have to admit, it is a little creepy how Kurt hangs all over Finn's every word. It's sort of…sort of like Kurt's stalking him. He seems to be everywhere Finn is all the time and he doesn't seem to be able to grasp that Finn is 100% straight. I mean, even if Finn was gay, I don't think it'd work."

"How so?"

"Well, Finn likes things to be really simple. Kurt's too complicated. He always has so much drama going on in his life and he doesn't hesitate to dump it all on me. I mean, Kurt's great, but I have my own stuff going on too, you know? I don't need Kurt and his 1000 issues clogging up my brain."

"Wow Mercedes, way to let go."

"Sorry, Q, he's just really getting on my nerves at the moment. Sometimes I just put up with him because he hasn't got any other friends. I feel bad on the guy, you know?" Quinn just nodded quickly.

"Sorry, Beth's pressing against my bladder. Duty calls!"

"You bitch." Santana seethed, in English this time. Tina shook her head furiously and Brittany was crying tears of rage. Quinn looked upset just telling the story.

But Kurt remained completely apathetic. "Get out."

Mercedes blinked harshly. "What?"

"I said, get the hell out of my house. You're no longer welcome here. As for Glee Club, don't expect me to talk to you. You crossed a line, Mercedes. You didn't just say all of those things, you said them to somebody else. One of my best friends, no less. But you weren't to know that. Because you're only interested in yourself. You're selfish and this won't go without repercussions."

Brittany coughed as Mercedes went to leave the room. "Don't think you're only dealing with Kurt. Anyone who hurts him like you have goes down. I'm not making any exceptions for you. If you think I'm bluffing, just wait until Monday."

Santana didn't get to claw Mercedes' eyes out like she wanted to. And oh how she wanted to.

Tina just looked appalled. Well, she knew that Mercedes could be all kinds of selfish, but not like that. That had to cross a line. One that couldn't go unpunished.

Quinn squeezed Kurt's hands, expecting some emotion to show. Sadness, maybe. Anger, definitely.

Kurt's face contorted into a raging expression that nobody but Brittany had ever seen before. "As if I wasn't already making revenge plans for a selfish fuckboy, now I have to accommodate her into our scheme. I know you're all expecting me to cry, but I won't. She didn't say anything that I already thought myself. I'm not really angry about the fact that she said those things. It's that they were said to Quinn. Then she posed as my 'best friend' again the very next day in Glee Club. I won't be lied to or tricked. Badmouthed, I can handle. Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice, not even close. Mercedes Jones is about to be taken the fuck down."

"How?" Tina piped up.

"Hmm, good point. Well, she cares about her reputation doesn't she? A lot. How about we take that from her? She doesn't have a lot. She needs a gossip system. Tina, you're currently it. Cut her off."

"Done and done." Tina smirked.

"Outstanding."

"Is anyone else really excited for school tomorrow?" Quinn asked, making Santana scowl. "No, not as in the curriculum. But lunch, free periods, Glee Club. It's going to be how we want it. Finally, we're going to get to rule everything how we like."

Santana shuddered at the thought.

"Get ready, McKinley, because we're coming for you." Brittany muttered. "And your ducks."

Kurt really was looking forward to seeing how their dynamic played out. Puck, Mercedes and the rest of the school were about to find out just how powerful they all were within their own circles and, soon, the entire school.

Chapter Text

The first thing that many students at McKinley High saw that day was something that they had never thought they would see. Five students entering the school in perfect synchronicity. They each walked with the same leg, hips moving at the perfect speed as if oiled. Their gazes were intently focused straight ahead of them and they were in no danger of flickering elsewhere anytime soon. It was almost as if they should have been wearing sunglasses or taking part in the McKinley edition of Mean Girls.

As if that was not enough, the people in question raised a lot of eyebrows. The central trio were no causes for confusion. The Unholy Trinity, as they were so aptly labelled around school. Quinn Fabray, Santana Lopez and Brittany Pierce. They knew each other's every movement perfectly. They were always seen together and had been seen together walking as they were now, completely in step and looking fierce. Nobody dared cross them and nobody would.

It was the flanking duo that raised some eyebrows. On the left was Tina Cohen-Chang. Sure, she was in Glee Club was the cheerleaders, but nobody knew that she actually hung out with them. The biggest surprise here was that she wasn't on The Cheerios, especially if she was close friends with the integral trio of the squad. Tina had taken the colour out of her hair so it was jet black and fell way past her shoulders. Her usual attire had been swapped out for a short, yet classy, black skirt with a black shirt and jacket to match. Nobody questioned her love for the colour black because the others were wearing it too.

On the right was Kurt Hummel. All of the bystanders to this particular occasion knew of his friendship with Brittany, that was immensely clear to see even to the mouthbreathers. It definitely should not have surprised them that he interacted frequently with Quinn and Santana due to this. Kurt's friendship with Tina often fell through the cracks, pushed down by his 'friendship' with Mercedes, but it was nothing to be scoffed at. Yet again, nobody had noticed. Kurt's outfit was predictably him, but with an edgier dynamic to it. His trusty black skinny jeans had not been replaced, but it was the striking leather jacket that turned heads. His hair had been styled to be a little less...neat, yet in a way that still resembled his usual style. Not every hair was in place, giving Kurt more of a rugged look. He had filled out over the summer as well, apparently, his black shirt protruding slightly due to the apparent formation of his well-built chest. Kurt had always put it down to the dancing, but he secretly went to the gym quite a lot when he knew nobody was around. He even kept his membership from his father. His friends knew, but what didn't they know about him? His typically raised eyebrow was in place, making his glare so much more intimidating than usual.

Quinn Fabray had once lamented about the fact that people had parted like the Red Sea during her stint as Head Cheerio. Once her pregnancy had impeded this, people stopped moving for her, going so far as to shove into her. This made Kurt furious, but his political influence at the school was definitely not been able to make an impact on whether or not people barged into her. Some days, they would walk in front of her, fending everybody off and making sure the baby was safe. Quinn had been touched that they would risk slushies and shoves just for her and had been most grateful.

Quinn's ability to separate the student body was a drop in the ocean compared to what the KHHHB could achieve. The quintet strutted down the hallway as though they had been wired to control everything around them. Their aura drew people in but alienated them just as quickly due to their intimidating prowl.

Standing at the bottom of the hallway, however, was the one person who figured that he had enough of a reputation to oppose them.

Noah Puckerman.

Santana's poker face quivered a little when a smirk threatened to stretch onto her face. Kurt's upper lip twitched as he pulled out his phone.

"Showtime," he muttered as it rang. When the voice spoke into the receiver, Kurt smirked. "It's time."

All of a sudden, a beat dropped through the speaker system, cueing the musical number that they had been planning. Their formation shifted so that they were forming an arrow, with Santana taking point.

"Feel it comin' in the air, hear the screams from everywhere. I'm addicted to the thrill, it's a dangerous love affair," Santana sang loudly as the instrumental over the speakers dulled a little to accommodate her vocals. Tina quickly stepped up beside her, leaving the rear three to fan out and strut around the vocalists.

Santana looked at Tina once and nodded. The two both began to sing the next part, Santana taking the lower harmony. "Can't be scared when it goes down, got a problem tell me now." People were amazed at how frightening Tina Cohen-Chang could actually look. Walking next to the school's scariest femme fatale only added to her fear factor. Quinn had fallen behind so that he could walk through the two and take the next vocals on his own.

"Only thing that's on my mind." Kurt did the same thing to lead his own section.

"Is who's gonna run this town tonight."

Santana smirked and joined him for the repeated line. "Is who's gonna run this tonight."

All five of them did a step shuffle forwards for the final line of the chorus. "We gonna run this town."

Then, the most surprising thing of the morning happened. Brittany began to rap the Jay-Z verse.

"We are, yeah I said it, we are. This is Roc Nation, pledge your allegiance." Her charisma made the verse work, especially when Santana joined her.

"Get y'all black tees on, black cards, black cars, all black everything." They rapped as a duet and somehow, it worked.

Kurt and Quinn took over the next part. "And our girls are blackbirds, ridin' with they dillingers. I'd get more in depth. If you boys really real enough."

Tina slapped Santana's ass firmly, an improvised nuance that made Santana shudder in surprise. She had half expected something like that to go down in the heat of the moment, but from Kurt or Brittany. Definitely not Tina. Then again, the girl was surprising her a lot lately. The Asian walked in front and demanded her own section that Santana was supposed to take solo. Feeling the improvisation, Santana let her.

"This is la familia, I'll explain later, but for now let me get back to this paper. I'm a couple bands down and I'm tryin' to get back. I gave Doug a grip, I lost a flip for five stacks, yeah I'm talkin' five comma, six zeros dot zero. Here it go...Back to runnin' circles 'round niggas. Now we squared up. Hold up"

Immensely proud of her and her flawless rap, Kurt dramatically sassed his way to the front to repeat the chorus, the penultimate one before the end of their edited version. Turning the corner to enlarge their audience, Kurt began to sing.

"Life's a game but it's not fair. I break the rules so I don't care, so I keep doin' my own thing, walkin' tall against the rain." Those lyrics were chosen by Kurt, for Kurt, as a signal that he was not going to take anymore crap from anybody. And he meant it.

Quinn and Santana walked alongside him so that the trio could continue. Tina and Brittany pulled out some of their finest choreography to add to the vocals.

"Victory's within the mile, almost there, don't give up now. Only thing that's on my mind is who's gonna run this town tonight!" The three sang perfectly together, leaving slacked jaws in their wake.

They repeated the chorus again, with Brittany and Kurt taking the lead for the first half and Tina and Quinn teaming up for the second half.

"Hey-hey-hey-hey-hey-hey. Hey-hey-hey-hey-hey. Hey-hey-hey-hey-hey-hey" Santana sang.

"Is who's gonna run this town tonight." Kurt backed her up.

"Hey-hey-hey-hey-hey-hey. Hey-hey-hey-hey-hey. Hey-hey-hey-hey-hey-hey" The five sang at different pitches, Kurt taking the bass notes to everybody's suprise. Quinn and Brittany covered the higher notes and Tina and Santana stayed at the middle of their range.

"Is who's gonna run this town tonight." The five finished, hips jutted out theatrically as the music died out. Rushed applause welcomed their ending positions and a very slow clap reminded them of the person that they were doing this for.

"Nice job, ladies. It really makes it easier to objectify you when you're dressed like that." Puck narrowed his eyes.

Kurt ran a hand through his hair and stepped forward. "That was a message, Puckerman. Watch out, because I'm about to dethrone you. Your reign has come to an end. And you'll be left begging for any one of us to lie on top of you while you get yourself off. Remember, Noah, standards are a tricky thing. Fortunately, you don't quite meet them. Have a nice day." Kurt's voice was layered thickly with sarcasm and a false kindness that jarred Puck slightly.

"What about you, MILF?"

Quinn turned, blinking. "You're just as disgusting and perverted as you have always been."

"I see what's happening! You're trying to turn the school against me. Well, it won't work. I have control over everything. The jocks, the cheerleaders and I can easily get Glee Club in my fist."

"Then where would your cock go?" Kurt gasped.

"Maybe in your pretty little ass, Hummel." Puck drawled.

"Not consentually." Kurt reminded him of that day in the locker room and left him to his day. Inside, part of him thought that Puck had just confirmed his threats and that he would follow through on them. Hopefully, he wouldn't. Kurt wouldn't let him, anyway.

 

Kurt had been the first to predict that their venture into gaining control of the school would not have gone as smoothly as they had hoped. Especially with the ones who thought that they already ruled the school.

The jocks.

With Puck probably already rallying their forces against the five who dared to oppose the supposed order of the school's hierarchy. Kurt had snorted a little at that fact. It was a clear fact that the Cheerios were on top and school's three main cheerleaders were on their side. Kurt had control over virtually nobody without their help, besides the Glee Club, and their influence would help a lot. Kurt was confident that they could overthrow the jocks and rule how they wanted to. With Sue Sylvester also, probably, on their side, nothing could really go wrong.

Kurt had not counted on the first day being the beginning of their attempt and their influence was feeble at this moment in time. Nobody was really listening to them as of yet. They needed time to set examples of what they could do before people started paying attention to their schemes. Kurt was dismayed to know that he had Gym first period on the first day back. Gym class was something Kurt didn't necessarily mind, but the class usually involved getting changed in the locker rooms, along with the most homophobic elite of the school.

Today was no exception.

"Saw your little performance this morning, Hummel. I gotta say, you just keep getting gayer! Are you finally turning into a girl?" Azimio bellowed across the room. Heads turned to Kurt, wondering what the witty teenager's retort would be. Kurt smirked and looked over at Azimio.

"You'd love that, wouldn't you? Me being a girl. That would mean that you could finally tap this without being accused of being gay. Don't think I haven't heard you guys talking about my ass," Kurt raised his upper lip before turning back to his locker.

"You watch your mouth, Hummel!"

"I don't think I will, if that's okay with you," Kurt sneered at the group that changed together and, before he knew it, they had him surrounded.

"Looks like the fairy's got some fuel in him this year. We're gonna have to teach you a lesson about respect, Hummel. With our fists."

Kurt snorted at their creativity. Suddenly, he had a new angle. It might have gotten him beat up, but that was nothing new, was it?

"Oh, now this is why I like Gym class. All of you big, strong guys so close to me." Kurt fell back onto the locker and sighed. "Ah, you're all so close I could just touch you all." Extending a hand, Kurt smirked when the jocks began to disperse, shouting slurs at him all the way out of the locker room.

Puck sauntered over to him, unimpressed with his display. "You really think you're something, don't you Hummel?"

"I would be stupid not to."

"Nice." Puck spat, rolling his eyes.

"Remember what happened last time we were here, just the two of us, Puck?" Kurt exaggerated the plosive sounds on his name. Puck's eyes widened slightly for just a second, but his usual composure was regained.

"It's clear you weren't receptive of my warning. The entire jock population is straight, Hummel. That isn't going to change. Maybe you should remember that next time you want to convert one of us. It's not going to happen."

"Please. Get over yourself, Puck. I wouldn't touch you under any circumstances."

"Wouldn't you?" Puck got in his face in a somewhat threatening manner. Kurt didn't back down.

"Clearly, you don't understand the word 'no'. Frankly, I'm surprised you're not in prison."

"Shut the fuck up, Hummel." Puck was raging, now, and Kurt didn't know if he could fend him off.

Suddenly, Puck was being dragged away from Kurt and his muscular body slammed into the lockers, creating that familiar screeching sound which made Kurt wince. He had associated it with pain.

Puck lunged and suddenly Kurt's saviour was being shoved against the lockers, too. Kurt's eyes brightened slightly as he recognised the boy that tried to talk to him when Puck made his unforgivable threat. His hair had grown a little over the summer, but he was still as attractive as Kurt remembered.

"The fuck are you doing, Evans?" Puck seethed. The boy, Evans, merely shrugged in response.

"You were being a dick and I didn't like it. Now get the hell of me and leave him alone." Evans nodded towards Kurt.

Puck slammed Evans against the locker one last time before smashing his fist into the locker by Kurt's head, leaving the room.

"Hey, are you okay?" Evans asked worriedly.

"Kurt?" Santana's voice sounded in the room. "You're skipping Gym. Coach Sylvester had you indefinitely excused. You no longer take the pointless class. Instead, you're filling the block with Cheerios rehearsal." Kurt looked to Evans and then to Santana.

"Wait-."

"Yep. You're on the Cheerios now. Now we have to go. KHHHB meeting under the bleachers." Santana dragged him away.

"Santana-." Kurt waved briefly to Evans before smiling apologetically as he made his way out of the room.

Santana looked towards him as she let go. "Who was that?" She raised an eyebrow.

"Evans. I don't know his forename. He's the one who tried to talk to me that day."

"Interesting. He'll do, I suppose. We'll appraise him at a later date."

 

They arrived at the bleachers, Tina, Brittany and Quinn already assembled.

"What the hell happened in the locker room, Kurt?" Santana asked.

"Just Puckerman not getting used to our little scheme. Predictable, I know, but he'll have no choice but to accept it."

Brittany nodded. "Are you sure that was it, Kurtie?"

Kurt knew that Brittany would know if anything else happened. Instead of replaying the entire conversation, he just nodded.

"Well, you and Tina are officially on the Cheerios now. Coach had no qualms with letting you both join, surprisingly. Santana and I remain as co-captains, but I have a suspicion that Coach will value your input more, Kurt." Quinn smiled.

"Kurt?" The voice of Evans made everyone look around. The blonde boy stood there, timidly running his hand through his hair.

Brittany gave Kurt a look that said Go, Kurt, he's totally into you. Kurt smiled at them and went to join Sam out from under the bleachers.

"I just wanted to make sure you were okay. Puck was getting pretty heated in there," He said, eyes shining wildly with something Kurt couldn't quite decipher.

"I'm fine, thank you. I didn't quite get your name before."

"Sam," Sam immediately said, stretching out his hand. "Sam Evans."

"Kurt Hummel."

"That's a lovely name," Sam said, hating himself for how cliche this whole thing was.

"I'm glad you think so. I wanted to thank you, as well, for before. Nobody has ever stood up to anyone for me before at this school. It's pretty rare around here."

"Honestly, no thanks are necessary. I'm just shocked that nobody else thought to help you."

"I'm just shocked that nobody else thought to join in," Kurt laughed slightly.

Sam smiled (and oh wow he was beautiful when he did that). "I actually thought about that earlier. I'm sorry for not doing more to help you before summer. It was pretty awful what was said to you and I could've done more to stop it." Sam looked genuinely distraught that he hadn't been able to help. In that moment, Kurt knew that Sam Evans was one of the most special people at the school.

"Oh, Sam, don't think that way. They had you physically restrained. From what I saw, there were like five guys pinning you down for even talking to me. You're totally...forgiven, if that's what you're looking for?"

"Partially. I also wanted a date, if you'll accept," Sam asked, blushing.

"Excuse me?" Kurt could not believe that something like that happened to him in Lima, Ohio.

"You know, a date. Two people, sometimes four, sharing a dinner or a romantic event in order to expand their knowledge of each other and begin a relationship."

"Wait, what?" Somehow, Kurt had lost all of his charisma and was stuttering like an idiot.

"Look, Kurt, this could go on forever. How about I meet you after school tomorrow? I'll have a table booked somewhere romantic. I'll let you get back to your friends."

"Sam, wait!"

The boy turned around.

"Y-Yes. I'll go out with you."

Sam's grin took over his face and he walked away, for real this time. Kurt blushed considerably and went back to the other four.

"What was that about?" Tina asked as soon as Kurt sat down.

"Sam asked me out." Kurt said quickly, hoping the blush would fade.

"Awww," The girls, minus Santana, cooed.

"Hummel's finally gonna get laid!" Santana cheered, praying that this day would come sooner rather than later.

"Not just yet, Santana."

"Whatever, it's still going to happen, be happy, Grandma!"

And Kurt was happy. Because he had a date with the hottest boy in school, besides himself of course, and he was a cheerleader. He was the high school cliche he had already thought about being. Why wouldn't everything be perfect?

 

Meanwhile, Noah Puckerman walked with purpose towards Sam Evans, a few backup members behind him.

"Evans. Heard through the grapevine that you're dating Hummel."

Sam stared back at Puck stonily. "We're going out tomorrow. I don't see how that's any of your business."

"You see, anyone on my football team that wants to go all homo for Hummel needs to be punished." Puck cracked his knuckles. "Boys, let's teach Evans why dating dudes doesn't always end well."

Karofsky's fist connected with Sam's nose and the latter fell to the floor, clutching his face. Puck straddled him, bashing his face over and over again as the other three kicked at him repeatedly. There was nobody around. Sam had no defence. He was starting to think that they would never stop.

He just covered his face and prayed that someone would find him.

"I think he's learned a lesson about not stepping out of line. Boys."

And, with that, they walked away, leaving Sam writhing on the floor, agony shooting across his body, muscles burning from the injuries. All because he asked out the person that he liked. Sam cursed the injustice of it all as the blood still gushed from his nose.

As Sam reflected on his situation, he realised that things would never really change, not when being different was punished rather than celebrated.

He would still go out with Kurt, nothing would stop that. He found the boy completely captivating and wanted to know more. Not even a hundred jocks would stop him from dating. And that was a promise Sam Evans knew that he could keep.

Chapter Text

Kurt stood over the bruised jock as the latter groggily stirred below him. Kurt had found out that he was hurt by the jocks straight from the horse's mouth itself.

"Hey Hummel, how are you gonna kiss your fag boyfriend when his mouth is fucked up. Heard that Azimio deals a good punch!"

Puck had then walked away, bragging about how he had "fucked up the fag" and reassuring people that that was not a gay thing. Not that anybody was questioning the badassness of Noah Puckerman, of course. No that was definitely not an option.

Kurt listened to the slow, steady beeping of the various machines that charted Sam's statistics and somehow it calmed him. Whenever he was in distress of any kind, Kurt would put his index finger to the arch between the bottom of that and his thumb and concentrate on the even thrumming of the pulse that flowed through. It grounded him in ways that meditation and yoga could not. Although he did practise the more complicated floral yoga poses until he nailed them. And boy did he nail them. Brittany had spoken of her appreciation for Kurt's flexibility during yoga many times in an ameliorative manner. That was good enough for Kurt. Who needed a man when you could have a best friend that complimented your ass?

Kurt did, apparently, due to the fact that he was watching Sam's breathing attentively, noting the rise and fall of his chest.

"Kurt?"

Apparently, Kurt was concentrating too much on Sam's respiration that he forgot about the boy being awake and alert. Well, alert wasn't really the word to use here. Sam was unfocused, and adorably so, Kurt noticed with a small smile.

"You're awake!" Kurt enthused, glad to see no long lasting damage. If there was, Kurt would have never forgiven himself.

"Well observed, Spencer Reid," Sam quipped and Kurt smiled widely at his reference and his unusual pep in the face of danger. Even Simba had eventually cowered away when evil came to call.

"Sam, before we talk any more, I am so, so sorry for this. If I had any idea that those brutes would try anything like this, I would have stopped them. If I pretend to hit on them, they leave. Or maybe they hit me, I haven't performed additional but essential duplicates of my experiment yet. Anyway, I completely understand if you wish to cut ties with me to avoid any further retaliation from the rest of the jocks. It can't be easy for you to be on the football team and date me."

Sam frowned, even though it pained him to do so. "Kurt, shut the fuck up, please."

"Pardon?"

"You heard me perfectly. Apologies for the bluntness, but you really have no idea how I work, do you?"

"I have an idea. Given that you've risked a beating to protect me twice gives me some indication of your character, but I'm genuinely stumped right now. No amount of logical reasoning can help me figure out the blinding enigma that is the mind of Sam Evans."

"No, not about my hero complex, but about my moral code. There is no way that I would stop seeing you just to appease some ignorant boys. They don't like our relationship? Frankly, I don't give a shit. Nothing can stop me from dating you, Kurt. And I just realised that I never expressly stated our relationship status and I just assumed that you were my boyfriend and I hadn't asked you or gotten your father's permission or—."

"Sam, relax. We're boyfriends. It's clear that you still want to be after everything and that buys you a get out of obligation free card. You don't have to talk to my father. I would rather you didn't do that, actually. He has a shotgun. Mostly, he's all talk but he can be unpredictable. Especially when his only child's virtue is being compromised by an attractive boy."

Sam blushed and the red blended with his bruising slightly, making for an interesting combination of colours on Sam's face.

"Can we put a deal in now where we are extremely frank with each other? No secrets, no deceptions?"

Sam nodded acceptingly.

"Good. Well, my friends and I are planning a power play for the school."

Sam just stared. That was not expected. "Wow, okay. I take it the musical number this morning was just a taste of the new regime at McKinley?"

Kurt nodded. "You're quick to catch on. We're just tired of the way things are running and know we'll be better ruling it ourselves. Now I'm a Cheerio again, it's going to be easier. There's an unspoken code where the Cheerios are treated with an infallible amount of respect."

"You're a cheerleader? You…the uniform." Sam jumbled.

Kurt chuckled. "I am quite happy with the uniform. It fits me rather well. I'm sure you will be pleased with it, if you catch my drift."

"Your drift is being happily captured. I can't believe I'm dating a cheerleader."

"And I'm dating the hottest guy at school, surprises are just everywhere recently. Including my talent for rapping. That was literally the most risky and spontaneous musical move since Kanye and Taylor at the VMA's."

"Can we separate what you just said into two halves? First, I want to backtrack to your first sentence about me being…"

"The hottest guy in school? Do you not enjoy compliments? I can be mean, if you want."

Sam laughed musically. "No, it's not that. You think so highly of how I look and I feel like it's going to cause us problems down the road."

"How so?" Kurt was curious.

"Well, I envision you bestowing that compliment upon me another time and me denying it once again because, come on it's ridiculous, and then you get irritated because I refuse to take your compliment and then we argue about my insecurities and how you get annoyed that I don't accept your compliments. It escalates into a multi-topical lover's quarrel and then you break up with me."

"How long have you been thinking about this?"

Sam paused. "For about twenty seconds. Yes, I have an awful case of paranoia and insecurity issues, it's probably best to get that out in the open now."

Kurt tilted his head, empathetically. "Me too. I wish I could say that it won't cause problems along the way, but it probably will. But I also know that I like you. Here is where I would roll out a perpetual list of compliments, but I think I'll save those for somebody who will enjoy them. I think Santana will appreciate them very much."

Sam laughed, which caused a stinging sensation in his ribs. "I like you too, Kurt, very much actually. You make getting attacked in the locker room so worth it just so you're safe. As long as you're safe, then nothing else really matters."

Kurt stopped him before he could say anything else. "Okay, this is the kind of Edward Cullen self-destructive behaviour that I don't think will help. And this isn't a fault with you, it's with me. I can't be the only thing that you care about, Sam. I'm incredibly flattered that you even think twice about my safety, but you're worth so much more than taking hits for me. Plus, cuts and bruises are insanely hot for me, but I don't like the fact that they cause you pain. I swear, when we take over the school, the jocks will definitely know what hit them. Because it's going to be me. I'm going to announce myself as reigning King of McKinley and show them what happens what you mess with somebody I care for."

"I don't want to cause you any more grief, Kurt."

"And you're not. If I didn't want to get revenge for you, I wouldn't. Simple. But nobody hurts my boyfriend simply because he's my boyfriend and thinks that they can get away with it lightly. No, sir."

"Irayo," Sam muttered. Kurt frowned. He had quite a large vocabulary but even this escaped him. Was it another language?

"Sam, you're going to have to clarify what you just said."

"It means 'Thank you'. It's Na'vi, the—."

"Oh, the language from Avatar! I was unaware that I was dating a massive nerd, Sam Evans. I kinda like it. Do you have those nerd glasses? Because they're insanely attractive and—."

"Kurt, you're rambling. I have the glasses. I wore them as a part of my jock/nerd combination costume for Halloween last year."

"Just when I thought you could not get any hotter…"

"Hush yourself, Kurt Hummel. Because nobody gets more beautiful than you and that is a fact. I'm willing to bet my comic book collection that you're the most beautiful human being in the world."

"If you're weren't bruised as fuck, I would be kissing you right now. Just wait until you recover and your bruising heals," Kurt blushed slightly thinking about kissing Sam, but maintained his composure.

Before the situation could get any more heated, the Nurse walked in. He was young, probably a Nurse in training, Kurt thought and he didn't like the idea of an attractive trainee taking care of his boyfriend.

"Take care of him," Kurt warned, his eyes narrowing. Sam chuckled at the whole situation as the Nurse blanched.

"I'll come and see you tomorrow, Sammy."

Kurt fled the room and left Sam to defuse the slightly awkward situation. He smiled apologetically at the Nurse, but he couldn't deny that he was very amused by the entire situation.

"Is he your boyfriend?"

"Yeah," Sam smiled proudly.

"That's really cute," He replied, making Sam blush. Yeah, Kurt was really cute.


"Q, I really don't like what went down in that locker room yesterday," Santana murmured as she filed her nails. She knew that she had missed the bulk of what happened but only knew that Sam Evans protected Kurt from the worst of it. Still, she had faith in her boy to defend himself, but didn't think that he could take Puck.

Sure, he was feisty, but Puck had a fight club. Plus, he was bigger than him and was packing muscle that Kurt simply did not have.

But Kurt had tactics.

And strategy.

And the most important tool of all…

"You know what we need to do, don't you?" Quinn smirked as she soaked up the rare sun.

"The Cheerios phone directory," Santana smirked back. "I'll get them on it right now. What Level are we thinking for this particular endeavour?"

Quinn thought for a moment. After everything that Puck had done to all of them, they should be going for a Level 9 Extermination at the very least, but they needed to gradually make their threats more menacing before truly striking the final blow. They didn't want it to get all out of hand before they had even truly begun. It was the first day of term, after all. They needed to be sneaky and strategic. It was an undoubtable fact that Puck deserved everything that they dished out to him for being such a perverted asshole, but a plan like theirs required a small amount of discretion. At least for now.

"Level 5, for now. We'll escalate if Puck does. Get Heather to activate the directory and do as she sees fit. We cannot be directly involved in this, S. As much as I want to be, it's probably best if we stay away from the gossipmongers, at least for now. Our entrance yesterday put us on everyone's radars, or at least Kurt and Tina. I was thinking that we put them up front for a duet in the pep rally next week to show everyone that they're not to be messed with. Especially Puck."

Santana pulled out her phone, nodding. "Heather, it's Santana. Spread the word on a Level 5 for Noah Puckerman. Choose his punishment on our behalf. If it's not good enough, you'll find yourself personally demoted to the bottom of the pyramid for our next routine at competition. Make it stick, Diaz."

Heather Diaz nodded curtly. "Yes, Santana. It'll be done within the hour."

Santana smirked. Oh, how she loved having power. "Outstanding." Hanging up the phone, Santana turned to Quinn.

"Within the hour," Santana raised an eyebrow.

"Perfect," Quinn smiled angelically.

They were in business. There was no time to fill in the other three on their pre-emptive strike, so the two hoped that Kurt, Tina and Brittany would catch on. Their bond was certainly strong enough to predict each other's movement.

Later that day, Puck noticed something strange.

Nobody was scared of him. People were actually looking him in the eye and laughing. What was that about?

He finally decided that enough was enough and that Jacob Ben Israel needed to inform him as to what was going on ASAP before he completely blew his top.

Slamming the nerd against the lockers, he grunted in his face until the boy quivered in terror.

Now this was what he was used to.

"What's going on today, Israel?"

Jacob looked everywhere but directly in his eyes and he stammered out the truth. "Your r-recent exploits have gone viral around the school and now everybody knows. People are talking."

"What the fuck are you talking about? What 'exploits' are people talking about?"

"Your…condition." Jacob did not want to say it. The moment he did, he knew that his head was going to be meant by a giant fist. And he knew from past experience that Puck's punches hurt like hell.

"I have no fucking condition! You'd better not be spreading shit and just tell me the truth right now!"

"Everybody's saying you have gonorrhoea and none of the cheerleaders want to go near you!"

"Give me more!"

"Rumour has it that you contracted it from one of the moms you clean pools for. Santana Lopez has been rumoured to confirm it, speaking from the point of view of someone in the know. Please don't hit me!"

Puck slammed the locker next to his head and growled. "Shit!"

Suddenly, he knew just who to find to interrogate about the rumour.

"Hummel!" Puck roared across the hallway, catching up to the smaller boy and shoving him into the wall close by. A few passers-by sniggered at him, but most of them were scared of him and made no move to help Kurt from Puck's grasp. Puck pressed down on Kurt's shoulders, crushing them against the wall.

"Have you had enough of beating up my significant others and are instead settling for the real thing? How juvenile of you, Puckerman."

"Cut the shit, Hummel. I know you're behind all of this. Nobody hates me as much as you do. When will you realise that you have no influence at this school?"

Kurt scoffed, ignoring the screaming pain in his shoulder. "Oh, haven't you heard? I'm Sue Sylvester's newest Cheerio! I'm virtually untouchable unless you want her to push you down the stairs and then spit all over your supposed badass legacy. I suggest you leave me alone. I know nothing about what you are talking about, Puckerman. Now kindly remove yourself from my presence before the contamination becomes irreversible."

"Don't lie to me!"

"Lying means that you care. I have no concern for your wellbeing at all. I thought you might have had at least a shred of dignity but that was wiped out when you beat up my boyfriend for no reason."

"Evans deserved every punch thrown at him," Puck chuckled.

"Like shit he did. He defended me from you Neanderthals. He's the only decent guy at this school. You really learned nothing from Glee Club, did you? You may as well just quit."

"This isn't about fucking Glee Club. This is about you telling everyone that I have gonorrhoea!" Puck said the last part in a whisper. He didn't need anybody further hearing this stupid rumour.

Kurt laughed and not even sarcastically. It was a full blown laugh. In Puck's momentary lapse of power, Kurt shrugged him off and elbowed him in the back, sending him flying against the very same wall. "That is the best thing I've ever heard! Oh, I could sing! Finally, the female population gets the warning that they have deserved since you first got an erection! But no, I didn't know about this. You've got the wrong gossipmonger. Try again. Wow, big deal, girls don't want to climb on top of your sweaty body while you try to pretend that you're not the biggest Lima Loser of them all. Whoever did this has probably done you a favour. You can finally stop being a whore and start trying to be something more than a giant fuck up. Have a nice day, hope your disease doesn't cause you too many problems." As Kurt walked away confidently, he knew that Santana had cooked up this particular rumour. It was so her and he was proud. Or, maybe, she had left it to the Cheerio phone directory. Either was fine. The first strike had been struck and Puck's retaliation would be greatly anticipated.

The war of the KHHHB vs Noah Puckerman had officially begun.

There was no turning back.


"Tina, wait up!" Brittany called, jogging down the hallway and darting past several people to get to her friend. Tina had stopped and waited her the blonde to catch up to her before smiling brightly.

"Hey Britt! Do you have a free period now?"

"Yep! I just wanted to talk to about something that I don't really feel like I can talk about with the rest of the group. It's not that I don't trust them or anything, I just think that you'll understand more."

Tina was concerned for her friend. "Brittany, is everything okay?"

"Oh, I'm fine. I just…I wanted to know if you wouldn't mind tutoring me a little bit in some of my subjects. I don't know if I told you, but I want to apply to veterinary schools next year and my current grades aren't quite sufficient to make them take me seriously."

Tina blinked. "Of course. But Brittany, I know that you're smart enough to get in."

"Let's not do this. I know that I'm not as smart as the rest of you. Everybody thinks I'm completely stupid, but it is only because I want it that way. Most of the time, it works to my advantage. I can gain a lot from it sometimes. I know that I can do well, but I really want to be a vet. Helping animals will be such a good thing for me to do and I need to do it. I know that I can study hard, but I want to excel rather than just scrape by."

"I'm proud that you're looking to improve your grades, but why haven't you asked Kurt or Santana?"

"Kurt probably would tutor me well enough and he has done in the past, so that's really why I don't want to ask him again. He's my best friend, but I hate burdening him. And Santana…well she's part of the reason that I want to do this. I want to be smarter for her. So that she will be proud of me. And that if something ever happens between us, we can have intellectual discussions without me getting lost in the conversation."

Tina cooed. That was just the most adorable gesture ever. Brittana was so happening. "Britt, you know that Santana cares about you no matter what, right? So, what subjects do you need tutoring in?"

"English, Chem and History, mostly."

Tina nodded. "I can definitely do that. We can start now, if you want. Oh but, first, there's something I have to do. It'd be nice to have some backup. Let's find the others first, though."

The five met up shortly afterwards, filling each other in on the day's gossip. Kurt told them of his conversation with Sam at the hospital. Santana and Quinn told them the details of the rumour and Tina announced what she was about to do.

"It's time it happened, like you suggested, Santana. I can't deal with this treatment anymore."

Tina turned the corner and saw the boy that she was looking for. "Artie."

"Hey, T, sorry I didn't catch up with you during the break. I was busy."

"Let's not beat around the bush, shall we? Over this break, I've realised some things about myself, and about you. You're a completely terrible boyfriend. You haven't even noticed that I stopped painting ever since my competition entry was ruined. Yeah, what competition right? You're not interested in my life. You're only interested in Halo tournaments with Finn and the creature."

"Who, Puck? He's a cool guy."

Tina turned incredibly angry all of a sudden. "If you think that, you're a fool. He is a monster, Artie, and this just proves that we're not thinking on the same level. I'm breaking up with you. You don't care about like I thought you did and I'm better off without you."

"Tina, wait," Artie tried, but the Asian girl had enough.

"No, Artie! I'm done with you! Now you can play Halo all you want without obligation towards a girlfriend."

Tina walked off, waiting until she rounded the nearest corner before sinking into Kurt's arms.

"It's okay, baby, you did the best thing for you. Don't forget that."

Tina nodded glumly. "I know. I'm glad I have you guys here to—."

"Tina!" A shrill voice announced the arrival of Rachel Berry. "I just received word that you ended your relationship with Artie. Since this is your first Glee Club relationship conclusion, I want to you know how big of a rift you have caused for the Glee Club to deal with."

Santana scoffed. "Shut the fuck up, Berry, that was hard for her to do. She has self-respect until your sorry ass.

Tina quirked an eyebrow. "Besides, Rachel, if you want to blame someone for causing a rift within the New Directions, you should probably start by blaming the imbecile with the ugly ass Mohawk."

With that, she walked away, much like Santana, Quinn and Brittany used to do together. Watching from afar were two different people with different agendas, but each with the same objective endgame.

Bring down the KHHHB before any more trouble is caused.

Chapter Text

"Hey, Hot Lips," Santana approached Sam almost serpentine in her gait. Sam swallowed heavily but smiled. He would by lying out of his ass if he didn't admit that this girl terrified the hell out of him. Perhaps even scarier, though, were the three that came next.

Quinn took his other side, angelic in her demeanour. Sam knew girls like her. The ones that smiled sweetly but then stabbed you lazily with their nail files simply because you looked at them in a funny way.

Brittany took Santana's side. The typical underestimation of the sweet girls let Sam know that Brittany Pierce was so much more than how she elected to appear at school. Her genuine smile could be replaced with a devilish glare if you even so much as said one bad word about her loved ones.

Tina, to Sam, was scary in a quiet, nonthreatening way. Much like Brittany, but darker. Tina's Goth attire added nothing to her fear factor, Sam was so into things like that, but she had a serene rage about her that Sam guessed could be extremely mortifying once she unleashed her full fury upon somebody.

Sam desperately hoped that he would stay on the good sides of all four of these girls.

"Girls," Sam nodded to each of them cordially. "What can I do for you today?"

Quinn flashed him a brilliant smile. "Here's the deal, Sam. You're dating Kurt now, which has made him rather happy. That's a point in your favour. You've defended him against the jocks-twice. That's two more points. You're not a complete dick. There's another point."

"Do you have one?" Sam asked. "A point, I mean."

Santana smirked. "He has a smart mouth. That will only go down well with Kurt."

"Even better when he goes down on Kurt," Tina added, garnering respect from all three girls. Sam just looked more bemused.

"If you're here to give me the protective best friend speech, you don't need to. Kurt is the only decent person I've met since I moved here. If you think I'm going to hurt him, then you're way off."

Brittany smiled warmly. "That's good to know. Because Quinn and Santana are scary, but they are nothing compared to me where Kurt is concerned." She turned stoic and her eyes glinted with danger.

"I'll look out for that the day I ever hurt Kurt," Sam smiled slowly.

Santana pushed a hair out of his eye. "Look, Ken, I know that you're talking good game about not hurting our best boy, but how can we be sure? Good intentions pave the road to hell don't you know?"

Sam squinted. "I do. Madge told me."

Tina nodded. "Yep, he's the boy for Kurt."

Quinn narrowed her eyes. "Kurt has an emergency Glee Club meeting the same time you have lunch plans. What do you do?"

Sam frowned. Because what? "If it's an emergency, it must be more important that our plans. Regardless, I would just ask Kurt what he wanted to do. I would trust his judgement."

Tina merely nodded before continuing. "Kurt takes you shopping for a new outfit for your birthday. He asks you to try on a pair of jeans that you don't really like. What do you do?"

Sam thought for a moment before replying. "Well, if I don't like them, I wouldn't want to wear them. I wouldn't let Kurt buy something for me that I don't like. I mean, his fashion sense is on point like all of the time, but our tastes are completely different. I wouldn't let him dictate my outfit choices." He braced himself, thinking that he had said something wrong.

Brittany smirked. Two points for Sam. One for acknowledging that Kurt is his equal and would pay for things too and the other for having a backbone. Kurt needs that. She posited her own question. "Kurt is a cheerleader now. You're a first string football player. Most people won't like the fact that the typical high school stereotype applies to two guys. What do you do at the football games with everybody watching?"

Sam smiled. "Oh, thanks for an easy one, Brittany. I've been thinking about this for a while. I've made it clear that I don't care who knows about us, so dedicating a touchdown to Kurt is cute but very cliché. Kurt is special, so after we win, I would run straight over to him and kiss him so passionately that even the homophobes start to think twice."

Santana decided to have some fun. "You're at Kurt's place, you're naked and sweaty. You're fooling around with Kurt and he says that he wants you to fuck him. You're both ready and it's happening. But you don't have a condom with you. But Kurt's looking so sexy all hot and bothered that you consider going bareback. What do you do?"

Sam put a hand. "I'm offended you even finished that scenario. Going bareback is not a safe or healthy thing to do even if you are in a committed, clean relationship. While I am very much enjoying the delightful images of my boyfriend naked, I have enough self-restraint that I would wait until protection was available to us. No offence, Quinn."

Quinn had not even thought about that until he brought it up. She was surprised he knew. "Oh, none taken. You've done very well. Most boys I know wouldn't even let Kurt go to the Glee Club meeting in the first scenario. Though if you're saying these things merely to pass the test, we will hunt you down and do things to you that will make having Wolverine give you a hand job seem like a million orgasms. Got it?"

Sam nodded. "Noted. I assume that Kurt will fill you in on my progress after our date tonight. If something goes wrong, I'll pencil you in tomorrow for a castration."

Santana laughed loudly. "Okay, Evans, you're safe…for now."

Brittany slapped Santana's arm lightly. "San, he's doing well! They like each other. No need to be so hostile. Sammy, make sure Kurt enjoys what you're doing for your date. It's his first date and I know for a fact that he's really nervous. He likes you, so it shouldn't be an issue, really."

Sam gaped. "He's nervous?! I'm taking Kurt Hummel out on a date! He's probably the classiest, sophisticated and interesting person I've ever met! I kinda played it safe this time around. I booked a table at a nice restaurant, Pierre's, and then I got us two tickets to see a showing of Into The Woods in Columbus."

Tina nodded. "That's not exactly playing it safe! Kurt's going to love it, Sam. I know he'll fill us in later, but good luck and everything."

Quinn placed a gentle hand on his shoulder. "You've got this, Sam."

As the girls walked away with each other, Sam truly believed that he did have it under control.


Finn knew exactly where to find the source of the latest drama within Glee Club and within the entire school. Contrary to what others thought, Finn Hudson was not stupid. Well, he wasn't particularly good at spelling and doing math and stuff, but he was clued up on social hierarchies (Rachel had taught him that word) and knew how people operated. And the way that Brittany, Kurt, Quinn, Santana and Tina were operating was not right for the school and something needed to be done about it. He knew that cornering Quinn or Santana about it would end in trouble. He wasn't that close with Brittany or Tina, well enough to accuse them of destroying the way that the school was supposed to work. So Kurt was his only option to try and sort this entire problem out.

Another factor was that Puck was heavily involved, or so it seemed. The rumour that Puck had gonorrhoea was obviously falsely spread by their little group, even Finn knew that much. And people though he was a dullard? Nonsense. He had enough common sense to know that the group needed to be stopped and that Kurt was the way to do it. Finn had heard that Kurt was dating Sam Evans and that made him feel weird. It meant that Kurt wouldn't be hanging all over him. He currently had no influence where Kurt Hummel was concerned. Kurt would no longer dote on him and answer his phone calls and use that breathy tone to greet him (which Finn did absolutely not love in any way). They would have to sort this out using words.

And Kurt would win.

As long as Finn got his point across, it would be okay.

"Kurt!" Finn called as Kurt was about to turn the corner.

"Finn. What would you like today?"

"I need to talk to you. It's about your little group that you've designed to bully Puck."

Kurt laughed. He actually laughed at Finn. He had never laughed at Finn before. "Bully Puck? Oh, please. That's the worst thing I've ever heard. I'm just trying to get Puck to stop bullying me. And everybody else for that matter. Why does this concern you in the slightest, Finn?"

"Puck is my friend. We're cool now. And you know Puck gets when his position is threatened. Last time it happened, he slept with my girlfriend."

Kurt sighed. What? "No, Finn. Puck slept with Quinn because he wanted something that you had for a change. He was sick of you being the golden boy. In football, you were the quarterback. You were being talked about for future Prom royalty. Puck was jealous. Maybe he loved Quinn, but I'm not so sure."

"How do you know all of this?" Finn wondered. Surely Puck would not have told him.

"It's fairly obvious to glean, Finn."

Finn pouted. Maybe he didn't know people as well as he thought he did. "Oh."

"Can you just stay out of this? This does not concern you in the slightest. If it did, you would know about it. I'm going to pretend like this conversation never happened."

"You need to shut this down, Kurt. Or Puck's going to make your life hell."

Kurt smiled sadly. "Hasn't he already?"

Finn thought about this before shaking his head. "Not compared to what he's capable of. And with…how you are, it could just get worse for you."

"How I am? Don't act like you're concerned for my wellbeing, by the way."

"You know…you don't really know when to back off," Finn elaborated. "And I am concerned about you. You're going get hurt."

"Is that a threat or a promise?"

"It's an observation. I know Puck and I know you. This is going to end very badly for you."

"Please. I can handle this, Finn. I'm not backing down."

Finn grunted. "Then I guess I'm just another obstacle."

"I guess you are," Kurt observed and walked away briskly, ready to fill everybody in on their newest opposition. Not like Finn would pose much of a threat. Once people had found out that he and Quinn actually hadn't slept with each other and he had been blindsided by his best friend who had nailed her instead, his reputation had sunk slightly. And the Gaga shower curtain fiasco had certainly not helped, either.

Taking out Finn would be easy. He would have to discuss it with the rest of his harem, but it would more than likely be a cakewalk.

Then on to the real challenge.


Mercedes skulked around the room, trying not to be noticed by anybody. She did not want to be seen willingly associating with Jacob Ben Israel, but he was necessary if she was to exact her revenge.

On Kurt.

Well, on the whole of that stupid group. Who the fuck did they think they were, excluding her from their events. Kurt wasn't even friends with them, except for maybe Tina. But apparently his friendship with Brittany outdated even the popularity of Lady Gaga. Mercedes didn't really believe that. Kurt was only her friend.

"JBI!"

Jacob turned around, seeing the brassy diva in his face. "Mercedes Jones. Don't cut me."

Mercedes scoffed. "Relax, white boy, I ain't gonna hurt one curl on your pretty little Jewish mane. I have information for you. Important gossip which will make your blog and your pamphlets' popularity rise sky high. You got a pen?"

Jacob scrambled to get his pencil from behind his ear and got his notepad ready.

Mercedes began to speak and Jacob drank in the news hungrily, scribbling fiercely on his paper. This would make for a killer news story.

"What do you want in exchange?" Jacob asked cautiously. He had learned to never accept tip offs in return for nothing. Everyone always wanted something from him, as much as they despised him.

Mercedes smirked. "Oh nothing. I'll already have the satisfaction soon. See you around, JBI."

Mercedes walked the front parking lot with the biggest smirk on her face and the thought of payback imminent in her mind.

Game. On.

Chapter Text

"Have I mentioned how lucky I am to be going out with you?" Sam leaned across the table at Alessandro's, the classy restaurant that Sam had chosen for their first official date.

Kurt smiled back, blushing slightly. "I thought we talked about compliments. If you're allowed to relentlessly shower me with love, I'm allowed to reciprocate, despite your doubts."

Sam rolled his eyes. "Fine. You're an abhorrent person and I can't believe I ever considered dating you tonight."

Kurt chuckled. "That's much better. So I've never really done this date thing before. What are first dates usually about?"

Sam sighed, remembering his only other first date with a guy called Max back at his old school. It was awkward, but they got through it easily enough. With a few feeble questions, they had spent a lot of time eating so that they didn't have to talk. Sam realised that it would probably be the converse with Kurt. He hadn't really been that invested in Max but had accepted his date invitation to not dismiss anything out of hand. Their date had confirmed that there was no spark between them. Even Max had discovered that and told Sam as much. Sam was relieved.

He swallowed. "My only prior experience was rather awkward and there wasn't a second date. But I think that we should get to know each other a little more. We kind of jumped into this whole thing without being friends first. I mean, I admired you from afar, so I know some things about you, but I don't know that much. Tell me something that nobody else knows about you."

Kurt tilted his head at the question but smiled. "I'm trying to think of something that even Brittany doesn't know."

Sam shook his head. "She doesn't count. You two are much too close to have secrets."

"I'm a certified mechanic. I could probably make a career out of it if I wasn't going to be a doctor."

Sam was amazed for two reasons. Kurt fixed cars and that was ultimately one of the hottest things ever. He was also smiling at Kurt's confidence where his career in medicine was concerned. Sam had watched E.R but he couldn't even say some of the words on there, never mind even begin to learn what they meant and remember such definitions. He gave Kurt major props for choosing such a difficult life for himself. He had no doubts that Kurt could handle it.

"What about you?" Kurt asked.

Sam thought for a moment, trying to think of something interesting to say about himself that wouldn't drive Kurt away and that nobody else knew about him. "Uh, I can speak fluent Na'vi."

Kurt wanted to laugh, but he couldn't bring himself to. Learning a language was an impressive skill, after all. No matter whether that language was fictional or not. Considering it further, Kurt figured that fictional languages were harder to learn because they were few sources of true fluency. For Sam to be so committed to doing something so obscure took determination Kurt was surprised at.

"That's…honestly really impressive I mean, I knew you knew some words from what you said at the hospital, but I had no idea that you were fluent."

Sam's eyes lighted with surprise and elation. "Really? You don't think it's completely nerdy of me?"

"It's actually kind of genius. You can talk about people and everything around you without them even knowing. Plus, it mustn't have been easy for you to learn. There isn't exactly a class in it that you can take."

Sam shrugged, unused to people thinking that this nerdy attitude was anything close to him being smart in any way. "Lor menari."

Kurt frowned and pursed his lips. "Translation, please?"

Sam laughed. "I just said that you have beautiful eyes. You do. They're a colour I've never seen before. Is there a colour for them?"

Kurt smiled. "I don't know, actually. I used to just call them rainbow eyes. I just thought that was kind of cute. It worked up until I was like twelve and then I stopped wanting everything to be cute."

"Well, you definitely graduated from cute and went straight to sexy."

Kurt blushed. He had never been called that before. Never. Sure, Tina had called him 'hot' in his bathroom, but that was about it. Sam was basically the person that he had needed around him ever since he could remember. Not just for the compliments, of course. But for the company. The male company, to be more specific. Finn was probably the most male company he had had and hadn't that blown up in his face one too many times? That reminded him that Finn was now working against them during their scheming. He wouldn't be too hard to take out, but he would have to be watched.

Perhaps more closely considering the tall teen was somehow hidden behind a particularly thick plant pot at the very same restaurant that was currently accommodating Kurt and Sam's date.

And he was not alone.

"Hudson, when do we get to go over and put an end to this?" Azimio hissed quietly down the phone. The jocks were stationed at different points within the restaurant and the exterior. Finn could not allow Kurt to keep dating Sam. He had liked Sam quite a bit. The dude was cool and liked Halo well enough, so that counted for a lot. Now that he had (probably) been intimidated into not trying out for quarterback so Finn could take it, Finn had no problem with him. Until he showed up at the house with fucking flowers. You don't get a dude flowers. That was pretty gay of them, even by Kurt's standards.

Finn watched them laughing as Kurt left for the bathroom, where Puck was stationed. Puck had placed himself there, knowing that one of them would wander in there eventually. And it was Kurt who walked briskly towards the bathroom.

Sam watched him leave and then…looked directly at Finn.

Finn held his breath, hoping that Sam wouldn't notice what was going on. To his relief, the boy looked back to the table and asked for the bill as their dessert places were cleared. Finn figured that Sam took the opportunity to ask for the bill while Kurt was in the bathroom so he could pay without Kurt protesting. It was a pretty genius move, Finn had to give Sam credit for that. But he didn't see why Kurt should pay at all. He was the girl in their relationship, after all.

A haunting voice that sounded a lot like Kurt floated around his head. "The entire point of a gay relationship is that there is no girl, you imbecilic creature. You have enough of a problem with it that you should at least know that."

Finn shrugged to himself, wincing as the plant leaves swayed with his movement. "Once they leave, sneak around the back and surround them in the parking lot. But we're not fighting. This is about education, not damage."

"Fuck that shit," Azimio replied quietly. Finn sighed down the phone and Azimio groaned. "Maybe I can get on board with that. But you gotta let me punch something Hudson before I go insane."

Finn chuckled quietly and hummed his affirmation. "I'll give you the key to the weight room and you can go in and have at it."

"How the fuck do you got the key?"

"Special privileges for scholarship seekers. It doesn't hurt that I'm the quarterback, either," Finn replied smugly.

"Fuck that."

Kurt exited the restroom and Finn expected to see him paler than usual and maybe with a bruise or two. He had told Puck not to hurt him for fear of Burt and his mom seeing it, but maybe some verbal torment would teach Kurt his lesson.

But no. Kurt showed no signs of anything. He looked completely neutral, like he hadn't even seen Puck in there. Maybe he hadn't.

"You paid the bill?" Kurt asked.

"I wanted to treat you tonight. I asked you out, so I paid. We can alternate. You can choose what we do and pay next week if you like."

Kurt beamed because Sam didn't want to treat him like a girl. He realised that they were equals. He understood. "That sounds perfect. I have a few ideas, already."

"Just don't make plans next Wednesday," Sam warned.

"Why not?"

"I was planning to make it our first date, so everything's paid for, but the particular thing didn't come around quick enough so it'll have to be next week. I was going to hold off until then but I really wanted to take you out tonight."

"I can't say I'm not completely curious, but I'll anticipate it with bated breath. Shall we make the journey home then?"

"I'm wondering why you're oh so eager to leave, Hummel," Sam said in a singsong voice.

"The sooner we leave, the sooner we can make out in the car," Kurt whispered in his ear.

Sam scrambled out of his seat and took Kurt's hand, leading them both out of the restaurant.

Finn dialled Azimio again. "Move out. Someone get Puck. He's leading this charge."

"Got it."

"I've had a really nice time tonight, Sam. You're such a—."

"Enormous douchebag with horrible comedic timing and a bad conversationalist?"

Kurt laughed. "Not what I was planning, but if you say so. You're wonderful."

Sam mock gasped. "Was that a compliment that slipped out of that sexy mouth of yours?"

Kurt coughed. "I believe it was. Face it, Evans. You're wonderful and I like to give compliments."

Sam sighed. "You're allowed three a day then."

"I've already used one," Kurt said. "Let's see now. You are…outrageously beautiful, especially tonight. And…you make me feel so damn good about myself. Like I'm valued."

"That's because you are," Sam smiled that gorgeous crooked smile that Kurt loved. "This has been a perfect first date."

"You know how to seal the perfect first date don't you?" Kurt raised an eyebrow enticingly.

"With a parade?"

Kurt slapped him on the arm. "Samuel."

Sam grabbed his face, laughing and kissed him passionately on the lips. Kurt sighed contentedly. It was a kiss for the ages, one that went on and on in his mind, but only lasted a few seconds in reality. It really was the perfect way to seal a perfect night. And it had been perfect.

Until…

Kurt and Sam were roughly pulled apart and thrown to the floor. The jocks stepped backwards as Puck walked into the circle.

"You two are just disgusting."

The two stood immediately, dusting themselves off. Kurt gave a Sam an 'I'll handle this' look and the blonde nodded, subdued, but he would step in if Kurt needed him to.

"You actually gate crashed our night," Kurt said in disbelief. "You hate us that much that you waste all of your optimum drug-selling time in order to spy on us? Someone's a little obsessed. I don't blame you. We are flawless, after all."

"Cut the shit, Hummel. We came here so you two would know that this little gay relationship is not something anybody wants to see."

Sam wanted to intervene then, but remembered that Kurt needed power on his side. Sam reached into his pocket and set his phone to record the conversation. He figured that Kurt would need proof of his future spiel so people would believe him.

"Nobody in the restaurant had a problem. Funnily enough, the only people concerned with this relationship is you guys. Wasn't this whole vendetta about you all thinking I was going to jump and fuck you? Now I'm monogamous and you're still on my back? That's kinda fucked up. Maybe you just want to watch…"

"That's fucking sick, Hummel," Azimio jumped in.

"No more than watching any of you writhe around on top of your poor, poor female conquests as they pretend to enjoy themselves to fuel your egos. I know things about all of you that would make you look awful in front of each other."

"He's bluffing," Finn stepped in.

"Am I? So Santana didn't tell me that you lasted for exactly thirty six seconds inside her before you came? Am I wrong that you were the size of a Kit-Kat? That you almost put it in her ass?" Kurt smirked.

Finn paled as the guys laughed at him. Finn knew what he was thinking was mean, but he needed something. "Picturing me having sex? That's almost incest."

Kurt expected something to come up about that so he laughed loudly. "Why would I need the mental images of you, you limp dick asshole? I have some very real pictures of my impressively hung boyfriend. I'm sure you all know from the locker rooms."

Sam was wondering when Kurt had seen his junk and then realised that he was bluffing to make a point. Sam was fine with that. Kurt wasn't wrong. He was well hung. Very well hung, actually. He wasn't embarrassed by that.

"Now, if you don't mind, I'm going to vacate this toxic environment and converse with a group that has a collective IQ of more than 20."

While certain jocks were trying to figure that out, some still laughing at him, Noah Puckerman realised that he had actually just had his ass handed to him by Kurt fucking Hummel.

This did not go well, Puck thought before quickly making plans for another scheme that would definitely go better. And maybe break up Kurt and Sam at the same time…


Mercedes Jones smirked to herself as she realised that she was walking a little bit taller. Her former friends had to know that they were treading a very thin line and her latest rumour had done just that. Jacob Ben Israel was more than happy to publish it and she relished the repercussions once they took full effect.

"Hello Mercedes," Kurt greeted jovially as he intercepted her at the entrance to the cafeteria. Yes, a nice public setting would do nicely for this little endeavour. A few people were staring now, but Kurt wanted a major public event to completely ruin Mercedes for the despicable thing that she had done. It was completely out of character for Mercedes (or how he thought she operated) and the bitch needed to know this.

"Kurt."

"Oh, don't talk to me like I've burned down your house, Mercedes. It was only a matter of time before we faced facts. We were never best friends. You enjoyed my stereotype far more than my actual personality and I already had four best friends who love me for me. Your petty jealousy and territorial attitude had no place in my life."

"You don't know even know them, Kurt! Quinn and Santana were awful to us up until they joined Glee Club and even after. And now you claim that they're your best friends? That's fucked up, boy."

Kurt coughed. "Okay, Mercedes, I have something to say to you and I am only going to say this once. You can defend yourself however you like afterwards but you are going to stand here and listen to this without speaking. You think that everything you're doing is somehow Machiavellian when really it's just plain spiteful."

"Spiteful?" Mercedes echoed and Kurt put up a hand.

"I believe I told you to listen."

The energy in the cafeteria had died down and Kurt realised that everybody was listening. Mercedes blushed and Kurt smirked. Perfect.

"Confirm or deny. Did you leak the article about Santana and Brittany's sexuality to Jacob Ben Israel?"

Mercedes opened her mouth but no sound came out. She was guilty of that but she felt little remorse.

"Wait. Don't answer that. Because you would probably just lie your way out of it anyway. Only, this time, I'm not blind to you. I know that you wanted to sabotage me by getting to them." Kurt raised his voice slightly on the next part. "You know that hurting me doesn't work since this godforsaken excuse for a school has made sure every part of my character is attacked on a daily basis. So you attack my friends. And with such an issue as sexual orientation. Clearly you've learned nothing from our year in Glee Club.

"You've soiled whatever miniscule pieces of civility between us. I loathe you, Mercedes Jones. To out two people just because you're unhappy with your own pathetic life is low. Even for you."

Mercedes winced at that. Kurt was being way out of line. However much she wanted to speak, she knew that Sue Sylvester was lurking around somewhere. And defying one of the only students she actually liked was a suicidal decision.

"I cannot believe you've done this. Considering all the times you've preached about the importance of equality for minorities, it's a fucked up thing to do. I've already talked to Mr. Schuester and asked to have you removed from Glee Club."

"You can't do that!"

Kurt sighed, twirling his hair around his finger, cocking his hip to one side. "Unfortunately, I can't. Mr. Schuester compromised by having you suspended for two weeks and ineligible to perform a solo section at any competition this year. You may protest, but you can't deny how royally jacked up you've made things. You've taken the identities of two struggling teenagers and made them targets. Already today, nine people have said that they're going to try to make them straight again by showing them how much fun men can be. A senior even pressed Santana up against the lockers earlier and kissed her neck. That's fucking sexual harassment! I've already filed a formal complaint but I wanted you to really know what you've done. And all because you wanted a gay best friend, a stereotype that I am personally offended by."

"I didn't—."

"Don't you dare say that you didn't mean it, Mercedes. While I will concede that you did not ask for such repercussions, you foresaw them, of that I'm sure. You'd best hope that Santana's grandmother does not get wind of this nasty little story or else bad things will happen to you. Usually, I'm against hurting people, but you deserve nothing but lots and lots of hurt."

"You can't hurt a girl," Mercedes defended smugly.

Kurt laughed. "Who the fuck says I can't? According to this town, I'm more of a girl than you are. But I'm not going to physically harm you, Jones. I'm going to use emotional torture. That's even worse. And, don't forget, I know all of your secrets. Even if I don't, I'm sure Quinn does. And she won't hesitate to take you down. No, I'm going to leave you to Brittany if anything bad happens. And you know Brittany when somebody hurts Santana…"

Mercedes gulped.

"Oh, yes," Kurt eyes lighted evilly. "Until we graduate, you had best lay low, you complete bitch. If I hear of one thing that you've done that hurts the people I care about, I'm going to absolutely ruin you. Oh, and before you threaten to do it, because you bark and don't bite, report me to Figgins. Let's see who's going to back up besides Puckerman. Goodbye, Mercedes. Have a nice time with the vultures."

Kurt turned to the rest of the school, who had been eating peacefully. "Consider this a warning," he said before heading to the gym where he had asked his friends to wait and get a head start on the new Cheerios routine, which featured Kurt and Tina on lead vocal. It was a perfect way to showcase the newcomers and instate Kurt's reputation as top bitch of McKinley.

Kurt smirked as he thought of the weeks to come.

Oh, it was so on.

Chapter Text

Ever since Tina had broken up with Artie, she had not been able to help feeling a little bit bad, like she had overreacted. What she had told Brittany, Quinn and Santana in Kurt's basement had been true. She had loved Artie in accordance with what she knew love to be. She knew that she was probably wrong and that she would find out what love really was another time in her life. Tina also knew that love was subjective; that it meant difference things to different people.

To her, it meant having somebody in your life that you could always depend on and share everything with. No matter what time of day or night, they would try to comfort you and reassure you while telling the honest truth.

Tina had found that in Artie, until she hadn't.

Until Artie's time was better spent playing video games rather than talking to her or spending time with her.

That wasn't what love was and Tina didn't think that that was what Artie thought love was. She didn't think that anybody did.

So why was Artie so adamant on not being the boyfriend that she needed? Tina thought that he loved her, or at least he said as much on multiple occasions before school let out for the summer. As soon as Artie was under no obligation to see her because of Glee Club and their shared classes, he expended no effort to do so and all bets were off. Tina had held out hope that he would change soon into the summer. She wasn't asking for much, just a little compassion.

Talking to Quinn had made her realise that she hadn't overreacted at all. She had done what was only to be considered inevitable. Artie was not a good boyfriend at all and Quinn had pointed out that Tina deserved a lot more than just a boyfriend who wouldn't actually act like a boyfriend. Tina figured that she was definitely right, but couldn't help but missing Artie. Every time their eyes met in Glee Club, she would look away instantly, not wanting to have to look into the eyes that had once captured her so compellingly.

She sat in the library and put her head in her hands, thinking about everything that had happened recently. If you asked her two years ago if she would be in the midst of planning a scheme against her high school's biggest villain, she would have shook her head no and stuttered out her answer while trying to avoid you. Now, Tina was more confident than ever before. She owed most of it to Kurt. The others too, of course, but mostly Kurt.

"Hey, you okay?" A voice made Tina look up.

With a smile, she blinked. "Oh, Mike, hey. I'm okay. How are you?"

"May I sit down with you?" Mike asked and she nodded quickly, finding that her heart was hammering quickly. Maybe she wasn't as confident as she so thought. Or maybe it was just Mike.

"How are you doing?"

"Good," she said shortly. She wanted to frown. Hadn't she already said this? Or was Mike asking about Artie? Oh, he was.

"I meant…about Artie. Rachel was running her mouth off in English yesterday."

"Fantastic," Tina sighed.

"I set her straight, telling her that it was none of her business and that she should concentrate on trying to become less obnoxious in her own relationship instead of judging you in yours."

Tina stared blankly at him. Since when had a guy besides Kurt actually stood up for her? Artie certainly hadn't. "You really didn't have to do that."

"I know. That's what makes me so nice," Mike replied and Tina stared at him again.

"A Wicked reference, Michael?"

Mike shrugged. "Kurt and I went to dance classes together. He certainly makes a lasting impression. I had the whole soundtrack in my head for weeks before I asked him to borrow the CD."

Tina laughed. "Been there. You should try explaining to your conservative parents why you're singing the RENT soundtrack in your bedroom. Then you know how truly effective Kurt's influence is."

Mike let out a chuckle which Tina thought was adorable. "I can imagine."

"Mike, why have you never spoken to me before?"

He sighed. "You've always been attached. I've never felt that there was a proper avenue. You know how the rumour mill gets when a boy and a girl even speak to each other. I figured that Artie wouldn't have taken to the rumours very kindly. I didn't want to cause problems."

Tina wished that she had a sassy retort for that one, but she came up blank. It was sincere and logical. "You were probably right. Thank you for defending me, by the way. It means a lot to know I have support outside of my friends."

"Your harem," Mike corrected.

Tina smirked. "I don't know what you mean."

"Yeah, I know what Santana calls it. Apparently, I'm neutral territory in this so-called war of yours. Against Puck, right?"

Tina looked around and narrowed her eyes. "Is anything I say going to end up getting back to him?" She doubted that it would be because Mike and Puck weren't really friendly, but she had to be cautious. Otherwise, their whole endeavour could have been for nothing. Mike shook his head.

"Okay. Puckerman has done things to each of us that we're not particularly happy about. The scale varies in how much damage he's actually done. From stretch marks to lasting emotional duress. So we're here and we want things to change. He needs to know that he can't go around doing what he wants all the time. And for beating up Sam Evans just because he was going on a date with Kurt? That was the last straw. Kurt's in full revenge mode right now. Especially after what happened last night."

Mike simply frowned. Tina explained what Kurt had told them at their KHHHB meeting. Mike looked aghast that such a thing had transpired.

"Seriously? They followed them and ambushed them? That's absolutely despicable. Puck needs to know that he is not in good territory right now."

"He's already the target of this scheme. I don't think his territory could become any more negative, if I'm frank. Unless he pulls a Mercedes, of course."

"Now that I did not see coming. What the fuck was up with that?"

Tina shrugged. "Petty jealousy. Delusion. Mercedes had all but claimed Kurt as her gay best friend, a term which Kurt scoffs at and deems highly offensive to his character. She was outraged when she found out that he and Brittany had been friends since the age of seven."

"Dance class," Mike nodded. "I was there. They bonded like I've never seen before. If Kurt was straight, they would be planning their wedding right about now."

Tina swallowed, agreeing. "Probably. I'm kind of happy that they aren't, you know? Their friendship is inspiring. It even inspires my friendship with Kurt. Seeing how he is with Britt, it gives the word a whole new meaning."

Mike suddenly went still. "They remind me of Matt and I."

Tina smiled sadly. "You really miss him. I can tell. Glee Club hasn't been the same for you."

"Would it be for Kurt if Brittany moved away?"

"No. Of course not. Mike, I don't want to overstep my boundaries here but, do you have friends who don't live in another state?"

Mike was too disheartened by the answer that he gave it with a simple shake of the head.

"You're a great guy, Mike. I'd like to think that we're friends. Kurt is your friend. Quinn and Britt like you. Santana…likes you as much as she can like anyone who isn't Kurt or Brittany."

Mike chuckled. "Thanks, Tina."

Tina felt a bubble pop in her chest and she remembered what Kurt had said to her once regarding guys. "If you don't ask, how do you know they're not into you?" She inhaled. "Mike, you wouldn't by any chance…uh…want to go for coffee sometime, would you? As friends," she added, scared.

"I like coffee," Mike smiled brightly. "But I'd like it to be a date. Unless you don't want to. Friends is fine by me."

"No," Tina paused him. "A date sounds nice. Are you free Saturday?"

Mike nodded enthusiastically. "I'll pick you up at 1?"

"I'd like that."

As Mike rubbed her shoulder in parting, Tina wondered whether she was doing the right thing. She didn't want Mike to think that he was being used as a rebound. She also didn't want to seem like she was just trying to get back at Artie. Mike was sweet and seemed to genuinely care about her.

The throbbing that her heart was doing seemed to tell her that it was a good idea dating Mike.

And the heart wanted what it wanted, right?

Chapter Text

Santana always watched how people behaved around her.

It was how she got through life, because she knew her enemies. She also knew her friends and who knew having four awesome best friends would be so damn gratifying.

Not gratifying in the kinky way, but wouldn’t that be perfect?

Most of all, though, Santana watched Brittany Pierce.

Especially when she started to dance. Well then Santana could not take her eyes off of the blonde girl. She was so fluid and graceful, watching Brittany dance was definitely something to behold.

As more people came to learn about her sexuality, and Brittany’s, more people paid attention to her. Sure, people looked at her wherever she went; she was flawless and turned heads of both genders when she wore a low-cut dress. This time, though, people were staring, as though she was completely transparent and they could see inside her soul. One piece of information, that was all they knew, and it changed everything forever.

The night that Santana and Brittany had learned about the outing, they had sat with Kurt for hours, talking about how to deal with it. It was one thing to adjust to being outed publicly, but it was another thing to be in the KHHHB and be outed publicly. Santana knew that she couldn’t cry, definitely not, but she wanted to. She wanted to show the world that she wasn’t heartless, that she wasn’t a petulant bitch. At the same time, she wanted to show them exactly that. Oh, how Santana wished that she could approach everyone who looked at her funny and cut their limbs off. She knew that Brittany would never allow that.

Privately, she had spoken with Kurt about her feelings for Brittany. They were crystal clear: Santana Lopez was in love with Brittany Pierce.

To Kurt, Quinn and Tina, it wasn’t a secret. They knew, they had to know, and nothing changed. Because they were friends, Quinn and Tina didn’t mind changing in front of them like the jocks had done with Kurt. In their group, normalcy was perpetual and it had been such a stark difference to when they entered the building the morning after the announcement. They had walked by in their usual formation and saw Mercedes Jones smirking at them. Santana had asked to walk up and bite her, but Brittany had shot her down, saying that they do things another way.

Even though Kurt had chewed her out in the cafeteria, she was daring to show her face. Santana didn’t get that. Mercedes wasn’t stupid; she knew not to mess with them twice.

Brittany wasn’t a physically violent person and it was something that made Santana love her more. Their personalities clicked and complemented each other’s. Santana’s fiery rage issues were tampered down by Brittany’s cool waters. She had opted to destroy Mercedes emotionally and Kurt had agreed. Santana had expected Quinn to possess even a modicum of reticence, but she didn’t.

In the end, not even Brittany could quell Santana’s unadulterated fear.

She was scared of what people would say and how people would treat her. She walked slightly smaller and she didn’t scream at people in the hallways anymore because they knew. Everyone knew and they would all be waiting to use it against her as their revenge for everything she had done to them.

Kurt had assured her that anyone who messed with either of them or displayed homophobia would be taken down right there and then.

She loved Kurt.

He had suggested that she speak with Brittany about their shared feelings for the other and what was going to happen from then on.

Santana took Brittany aside in their free period and led her into the choir room, which was abandoned. Not even the creepy piano player sat at the bench.

“Is everything okay, Santana?” Brittany wondered curiously as they both sat down on the chairs at the front. Santana wanted to barf when she realised absently that the seats were where Berry and Hudson sat when they made out during rehearsals sometimes.

Santana nodded, scared to even say the words. Even in private. “I wanted to talk to you about…us.”

Brittany nodded back, catching on. Santana hated whenever somebody said that Brittany wasn’t smart because she really was. “I do too. I think we need to sort some things out.”

Santana sighed, relieved that Brittany was on the same wavelength. “I love you, you know that.”

“I do and I love you too, Santana.”

It never ceased to make Santana’s heart skip whenever she heard those words come out of Brittany’s mouth. Even in a platonic kind of way.

Brittany sighed. “I love you, but I don’t think that we should be together right now.”

Santana summoned all of her patience and understanding and vowed to hear Brittany out before letting her heart break. “Why?”

“We should be together…but on our own terms. Mercedes ruined the chance for us to explore our relationship before telling people. And I know how scared you are about being out to the school. We don’t have to be dating to be close. But someday, whenever you’re ready, you’re going to be mine Santana Lopez.”

Santana faltered because she was not expecting that. She really should have, though. Of course Brittany knew her better than she knew herself. Of course Brittany was sacrificing her own happiness for Santana’s comfort, yet again. That was a Kurt and Brittany thing. They did that all the time and they didn’t care if they were miserable because of it. Hell, Kurt had done that with Finn for all of sophomore year. And Brittany was constantly doing that for Santana.

“I…don’t know what to say. I want to be with you, Britt. I’m sorry that I’m not ready.”

“Don’t apologise for being who you are, Santana. If you’re not ready, then we stay friends until you are. And then, if you find that you want to date somebody else, I won’t stop you.”

“I won’t,” Santana promised. “You’re it for me, Brittany. You know how I know? Because I’m not upset by the fact that we’re staying friends. Because we’re soulmates.”

“That we are.”

Santana wrapped her arms around her best friend and future wife and smiled contentedly. That had gone well. She just wished that she was strong enough to be the person Brittany wanted right now.

Maybe in time, she thought.


When Santana got home that day, she knew something was wrong. From the very minute she stepped into the hallway, she knew.

And it wasn’t because her mother was in Buenos Aires for six months on business.

It was because her father wasn’t.

Carlos Lopez was not an understanding man and that was all one had to know about it to understand why Santana knew what was happening before it actually happened.

Carlos was in the kitchen, Santana’s laptop in front of him.

“What…are you doing with my laptop?”

Carlos glowered at her. “Santana. I need to know that this is not true.”

He moved, accommodating her position in front of the laptop so that she could see the screen. It was her Facebook page.

Seven new notifications.

Fuck, Santana thought.

She saw her inbox first.

Mark Bingham: Hey Tana. Now that you’re a dyke, how bout I come over and turn you straight again?

And the next one.

Peter Ellis: I can’t believe that I had sex with a lesbian.

The next one was the one that she was most enraged by.

Dave Karofsky: I knew you and Brittany were fucking. You’re a bitch to everyone but her and she’s retarded enough to think that what she’s doing isn’t fucking disgusting. You’re going to Hell, dyke.

Santana cracked her neck before she father snapped the laptop shut.

“Well?! Are they true?”

She didn’t answer.

“Santana? If you say nothing, I will take that as a yes.”

“It’s true,” she muttered.

And then she felt the hand burn against her face and time just stopped. She knew what was coming.

“Get out of this house right now. You are longer welcome here. You are no longer part of this family. This…choice you’re making is unacceptable and disgusting! Pack your things and don’t bother coming back! Your Madre and Abuela are as angry at you as I am.” Carlos then retreated into his study, leaving a despondent Santana with a desperate phone call to make.

“What’s up, gorgeous?”

Santana felt the tears smart at her eyes and refused to let them fall. “Kurt.”

She knew that Kurt would hear the sorrow in her tone. “I’m coming over. Hold tight, baby girl.”

She thanked God that Carlos had a soundproof basement and would probably not leave until he could be sure that Santana was gone. Because he and Kurt would not have gotten along and that was a dire understatement.

She packed her things while she waited; clothes, accessories, electronics, and shoved them into a suitcase or two. She didn’t have a lot of material possessions, strangely enough. It was enough to fit in Kurt’s car. Normally, she would not want to be presumptuous but she knew that Kurt would welcome her into his house. If not, she would stay with Brittany.

Left behind were her family photo albums and a few old books that she had read too many times. Santana was honestly too tired to pack them.

Kurt knocked at the door twenty minutes later.

Santana quickly opened it. Kurt’s eyes darted to the suitcase and the cogs in his brain clicked together.

“He didn’t,” Kurt cursed.

Santana nodded. “He wants me to leave. I’ve packed everything.”

Kurt grabbed the suitcase. “Well, obviously you’re staying with me. My dad will love it.”

“What about Finn? Aren’t they moving in soon?”

Kurt clucked. “Who gives a shit? He’s on the other side. We take him down if necessary.”

Santana smiled for the first time since leaving school. “That sounds like a plan. Thank you, Kurt, for letting me stay with you.”

“I wouldn’t have it any other way, darling.”

Chapter Text

Tina flipped open the pages of the History textbook in front of her, familiar with the syllabus enough to know the location of the Vietnam War without perusing the contents page. Brittany sat in front of her, nervous and jittery.

“Britt? Is everything okay?”

The blonde smiled at an attempt of deflection. “Yep.”

Tina raised an eyebrow. “Hey, you can talk to me. If it’s something private, the others don’t have to know.”

“I’m just worried, that’s all.”

“About my tutoring skills?” Tina smirked.

“About Santana,” Brittany clarified. Tina nodded in understanding.

The news about Brittany and Santana’s sexualities had been prime McKinley gossip for longer than it should have been. The vultures latched onto it and wouldn’t stop lamenting about how much a loss it was for the male population or how bisexuality didn’t exist. She had been worried about the two of them, predictably, but she figured that Santana could handle herself just fine. Clearly, she had misjudged them both very poorly.

Brittany was holding herself together and very admirably so. She had guys coming up to her, asking to “fuck the lesbian side out of her” and Tina had wrinkled her nose in disgust upon hearing that particular encounter. The disgust turned into amusement when she learned that Kurt had put his knee between the guy’s legs and “prayed that he had ceased the boy’s fertility chances because nobody needs those genes in an innocent child”.

Santana was flipping the fuck out and it was quite safe to say that. She had been evicted from her home and was now living with Kurt. So she had neither the approval of the student body or her family. All she had was the harem, well and Glee Club. Most of them, anyway.

The Glee Club’s divide was still as clear as day. There was Puck, Finn, Mercedes, Artie and Rachel sitting what was seemingly worlds apart from the others. Kurt, Brittany, Santana, Quinn, Tina, Mike and Sam were united against them and Mr. Schuester knew nothing about any of it. Artie wasn’t the villain and neither was Rachel. Rachel stuck by Finn and Artie just wanted to avoid Tina after their breakup. Mercedes was universally hated. Even Puck had been overheard stating that it was low what she had done. Despite his attempt at sincerity, Tina had scoffed and consider everything that Puck had done worse or at least equivalent.

“Santana’s strong. She’s had almost everything she knew taken from her because of narrow-minded fools and she’s still standing. I admire her for that. But what you two have is special and as long as you hold onto that, you can’t go wrong. And you have Kurt, Quinn and I whenever you need us.”

“I wouldn’t want to bother you.”

“Isn’t that what a harem does for each other?”

“I thought that harems usually included orgies. Are we going to have an orgy at Kurt’s place?”

Tina chuckled lightly. “Maybe if we’re drunk enough.”

Brittany tapped her pencil against the paper. “Thanks for doing this, Tina.

“Hey, it’s no problem. Shall we get started?”

As Tina and Brittany worked their way through most of Brittany’s homework, the blonde understanding more and more of what she was supposed to do thanks to Tina’s tutoring methods. It was easier for her to understand and she knew that she would retain it for longer periods of time.

At the end of the session, Brittany thanked Tina profusely for helping her and promised to do something in return.

“Don’t worry about it. If it helps you get into vet school, that’ll be all the repayment I need. So you do your best to get in.”

Brittany nodded happily. “I will! I was thinking about something before. Don’t you think that Puck has been a little…inactive given everything we’ve been doing?”

Tina hummed. “I was thinking about that, too. He seems calmer than usual. If he’s planning something big, we’ll just have to plan something bigger. No more gonorrhoea rumours this time. We have to make it count. I just hope that he doesn’t beat anybody up this time. Kurt and Sam have gone through enough at his hand.”

Brittany’s eyes darkened. “When I’m through with him, his hand is the only thing that’ll want to touch him.”

Tina smiled appreciatively and linked arms with the girl, walking out of the empty classroom and into the hallway. Eyes immediately turned to them both.

“Bored of Santana already?”

“Did you fancy yourself some emo chick?”

Tina rolled her eyes. “I’m not a fucking emo, you disgusting cretin.”

“Don’t, Tina. You’re encouraging them,” Brittany warned gently and ignored them as people glared and whispered things about her.

“But how do you stand all of this?”

“Simple,” Brittany began, “Kurt taught me to just block everything out. I know what’s going on in my life better than they do. And the fact that they have nothing better to do than talk about me shows how awesome I am.”

Tina nodded. “That sure sounds like Kurt. He really is full of wisdom, isn’t he?”

“Somehow it all makes sense, though. Whenever Kurt said that people talking about me said more about them than it did me, I was confused. Surely I must have done something for them to be horrible in response to. But the more I thought about it, the more I understood that they were spending their time talking about me. I was in their minds, even if I wasn’t in their hearts. But I have you and Kurt and Quinn and Santana to get by, I don’t need people who don’t appreciate me.”

Tina smiled. “Kurt really improved your self-esteem didn’t he?”

“More than you know. He’s done that for all of us. He’s our fairy godmother, except with better heels and wittier remarks. He’s Jennifer Saunders. Now someone needs to improve his. The problem is that Kurt has been almost conditioned to hate himself by everybody in this cesspool.”

Tina sighed, knowing exactly the problem at hand. “We need to overthrow everyone first. Once we’re top dogs, it’ll be easier for Kurt to understand how important he is.”

“The thing is,” Brittany explained, “that people here actually like him, but they’re too afraid of the jocks retaliating on him for supporting him. The spineless segment of the school are actually some of his biggest silent supporters. The Cheerios adore him, naturally, but the football team seems to have more capitol here.”

“Patriarchy,” Tina spat.

“Lesbian, vampire,” Puck’s disdainful voice acknowledged them.

Both girls sighed and turned at the same time, breaking the chain of their arms.

“What is it?” Tina asked. “Do you need to be shown how to use simple cutlery?”

Brittany smirked. “Is it still burning when you urinate?”

Puck raised an eyebrow. “I didn’t know retards could use three syllable words.”

Tina clenched her fists, but was stopped from swinging by Puck arching his back in agony. Over his head, she saw Kurt standing with his arm outstretched.

“How many times have I warned you not to speak about Brittany like that? Yet you insist on becoming the most ruthlessly ignorant person known to this planet. I warned you about the repercussions and now I have used them. Your spine is no doubt causing you a great deal of pain, right?”

“What the fuck did you do, homo?”

“It won’t last,” Kurt waved him away, “but you will be in pain for the next six minutes. After that, you’ll be fine. I trust you know not to insult my friends in the future. You already know what’s coming for you in the coming weeks. Or if you don’t, you soon will. Have an absolutely awful day, won’t you?” Kurt hummed in relief and linked arms with his friends, strutting through the halls like he had just done the world a great service.

Well, he had.

“Kurt, that was insane!” Brittany chirped. “Even I didn’t know you could do that.”

“I dislike physical violence, Britt. I much prefer non-contact punishment. But Puck can’t speak to you like that. He’ll be suffering much worse if he does it again, which we will. And part of me is looking forward to that day. How were your free periods?”

Brittany sighed, realising that she would have to tell him eventually. “Good. Tina was just…tutoring me in a few classes ready for vet school applications.”

Kurt frowned, but understood, or he thought he did. “It’s okay, Britt. I know you don’t like to come to me with academic issues. Even though you can always approach me with them, I like that you’re hearing things from another perspective. My methods of tutoring are probably less beneficial to Tina’s.”

Brittany shared a quick glance with Tina that Kurt missed. It said “See? Doubting himself!”

Tina nodded. “I don’t know about that. Brittany is inherently smart anyway. There wasn’t much I needed to explain.”

Kurt kissed the blonde’s head. “I’m proud of you, darling. You’re realising what I’ve been telling you all along.”

When will you realise Kurt? Brittany thought to herself.

She was immensely grateful for her friends. With them, she could do anything she wanted, no matter what it took to get her there.

She was truly limitless.

Chapter Text

Quinn always knew that her life had taken a pretty dramatic turn. She also knew that she was a fool to place the blame entirely on Puck.

It was her fault too, she knew that. She had failed to properly ensure that Puck had acquired protection but, less importantly, she had also made the decision to have sex with her boyfriend’s best friend. She was tipsy, not even drunk, but even then that was no excuse. Her virginity was being safeguarded and if Finn couldn’t have it, then why did she give it to Puck?

There was no doubt about it that he was incredibly charming when he wanted to be. That was how he had slept with countless women and they hadn’t even batted an eyelash at him before allowing him into their beds. Quinn didn’t like to classify herself along with the cougars, but she supposed she was just the same as them; girls that had let Noah Puckerman had sex with them. The only difference was that she was exponentially more fertile than them.

During her pregnancy, she had come across the word ‘slut’ more often than not. People in the hallways liked to pass out the insult basically to let her know that she was pregnant; as if she didn’t already know. But she wasn’t a slut. She considered a slut to be somebody who slept around carelessly, without showing real emotions with their partners. Puck was a slut, but double standards meant that he would seldom be branded as such, save by their little group and a few other people who dared to say it. But Quinn knew what he was and so did Puck himself.

She had slept with one person. Yes, she had a boyfriend who wasn’t that one person, but she didn’t think that was relevant to anybody but Finn. She hadn’t liked to think too much about Finn. It hurt her to know how much she had hurt him. That was, until, she had come to the late realisation that she had been fooled all along. Finn had kissed and chased after Rachel while she was with him. So they had both cheated in the end. Not that that negated her mistake, but it mitigated the effects on her conscience somewhat.

Quinn tried not to think about sophomore year too much. It hurt more than she cared to admit. Whenever she thought of Beth, she thought of seeing her in Shelby’s arms, looking over her new mother’s shoulder while Quinn’s own heart tore itself in two. Puck had admitted his love for her, but that had been irrelevant. As soon as summer had started, he hadn’t even spoken to her and Quinn certainly wasn’t about to knock down his door for a date. Junior year was about her and her friends. No man was getting in the way of that. Nobody was going to take her back to sophomore year and everything she had been through, least of all Puck.

So when her usually dull Wednesday included seeing Shelby Corcoran standing in front of her, smiling passively, Quinn was reeling.

“Hello, Quinn,” Shelby greeted with a small wave. Mr. Schue stood in the background of the room, anxiously waiting for Quinn’s reaction.

“You.” It sounded exactly like the accusation Quinn had intended for it to be.

Mr. Schuester sighed and walked over to Quinn. “Quinn,” he began, but Quinn shoved off his arm and shook her head tightly.

“Was I supposed to be more polite?”

Shelby swallowed. “I’d like to think that our relationship could become one of mutual respect and courtesy , yes. After everything we have shared, I would have thought that was a given.”

Quinn folded her arms in a very Kurt-esque manner. “We didn’t share anything and I resent the insinuation that my daughter,” Quinn started, the last word becoming a croak in her throat, “is the same as some toy that we have both had the opportunity to play with.”

“Beth is very special to me.”

“You kept the name?”

Shelby nodded, smiling. “It was pretty. It suits her.”

“What exactly are you doing here, Shelby? You have no reason to be here. You don’t coach Vocal Adrenaline anymore and you already have everything you’ve ever wanted. You came back looking to reconnect with Rachel and walked away with a daughter anyway. Are you back for a baby boy this time?” Quinn was angry. Before Shelby had left, Quinn had asked for her not to return to Lima, at least until Quinn was ready and Shelby had agreed, her plan being to never come back and make a life in New York.

“Quinn!” Mr. Schuester scolded. “Shelby has taken great care of Beth. I didn’t call you here to be rude to her.”

Quinn shrugged. “Did you even think about the damage this was going to do to me? Knowing that my daughter is here and not being able to do anything about it.”

“That’s why I wanted you to be here,” Shelby interrupted, “because I wanted to know if you maybe wanted to see her sometime. You don’t have to, but the option is there. I know it might be hard. It was hard for me to see Rachel, even after eighteen years.”

“Have you told Puck that you’re back?”

Mr. Schuester nodded. “But I know that he’s been isolated in Glee Club lately, so I called him here later today to discuss things. I thought it might be better. While we’re here, maybe you should think about patching things up with him. You’ll want him around if you go to see Beth, it’ll help.”

Quinn shook her head. “I appreciate the offer, Shelby, but it’s too hard. It’s only been a few months since I gave her to you and everything hurts. I know you’ll understand that. As for Puck, you have to be kidding me. He’s not somebody I ever want to have to speak to again unless it’s to tell him how awful he is. You have selective obliviousness, Mr. Schuester, so you don’t see him when he’s tormenting everybody around him in various stages of maliciousness. I wouldn’t let him see Beth, if I were you, Shelby. Just some advice for you.”

“Quinn, you can’t just…” Mr. Schue tried.

“I can and I have. It’s not my choice, anyway. Shelby’s her mom, it’s up to her. I’ll see you in Glee.”

Quinn left the room, images of her daughter flashing into her mind. It was difficult for her to fully picture Beth’s face as she had slowly tried to forget for her own good. Maybe it was for own her good, anyway, Quinn would never know. She would never know the life she could have lived if she had kept Beth. But she wasn’t in a position to keep her. Shelby seemed to be giving her a great life. Quinn resented that a lot less than she thought she would. Her daughter wasn’t loveless, at least, even if Quinn herself wasn’t able to be the one giving her that love. It could have been much worse.

But, for now, Quinn had a mission to focus on. Bringing down the father of her child and the bane of her life, Noah Puckerman, with a sweet, sweet revenge that would send everything into a state of discord. And it would happen. The five of them were the angriest people she knew when Puck was mentioned. He would pay, even if it took a little time. Dragging his reputation through the mud didn’t seem to be enough.

Quinn would make sure his torment was escalated to heights unknown even to her.

Because he deserved it.

Chapter Text

“Are you babies ready for the Cheerios pep rally?” Coach Sylvester barked at her five core cheerleaders. She had no idea how Tina Cohen-Chang had ended up on the squad, but here she was and she wasn’t half bad. She had good flexibility and good performance chemistry with her friends. Although, from her new recruits, Kurt Hummel was the most vital asset. Realistically, he would be captain of the squad, but she reckoned that that would send the wrong message her young ladies and gentleman under her wing. Just because someone might be better technically did not mean that they should automatically get the highest position. But none of the others outside Kurt’s friendship group saw his leadership potential. Sue Sylvester most definitely did.

And she was going to use it to further her own chances at Nationals just like the previous year before the boy foolishly quit the squad and help her main girls and gay further their agenda within the school.

She knew all about their little scheme as a group and knew that the Mohawk boy would not stand a chance against the powerful quintet. And she had planned the pep rally around them.

Brittany had found the perfect song to perform to follow up with their first day efforts with Run This Town. She had been planning the parts to the song for a while now. Of course the others had agreed to it, the song was perfect for them. It was perfect for their agenda and everybody would be listening. Santana probably fit the song best, but Kurt and Tina had prominent parts, too. Quinn thought it best to let those three take the leads. Brittany had agreed, thinking that the blondes’ voices were much better at reinforcing the soloists rather than being front and centre with a song like this one.

She and Quinn didn’t mind that their voices weren’t always used, it just meant that their job was more important to make the others sound better. Everyone had their strengths and that was theirs. Outside of music, Quinn considered herself a dominant personality and it was true. She had a natural air of leadership about her and that was something that both the cheerleading squad and the KHHHB were grateful for very much.

Coach Sylvester scoffed at their peppy response. “This isn’t the jamboree, you sweaty little children. This is preparation for competition. The more that audience of remedial, pre-pubescent mouth-breathing idiots loves your performance, the more I’ll hate it and you have a better chance of winning Nationals if I hate the routine. Porcelain, your verdict?”

Kurt tried to follow her logic, but he was coming up blank. He desperately needed to stop looking for meaning within her spiels. It was becoming too much work, especially when it was painfully obvious that she was making no sense. Still, nobody would ever dare to call her out on it. No way. “We’re ready, Coach Sylvester. The routine is polished, our vocals are flawless and there’s just enough sex appeal that you’ll be able to spot the boys who are touching themselves and eradicate them.”

“Outstanding. You’re all dismissed! And try not to fall over puddles of your own mediocre sweat in the process.”

The Cheerios dispersed and the KHHHB regrouped for their pre-pep plans.

“Are we all ready for this?”

“I was born ready for this shit,” Kurt sassed.

“Oh good, we’re walking clichés,” Santana groaned.

Quinn dismissed her passively. “So we all know what we have to do after the rally?”

Everyone nodded. They were not about to let this opportunity go. They had been passive for a lot longer than they wanted to be and things were about to change.

“Operation DB is in effect.”

“I forget,” Brittany hummed, “is DB for douchebag?”

Kurt chuckled. “It should be, Britt. That definitely counts.”

Brittany grinned as they strutted down the hall, ready to remind people that it was time for the pep rally. Coach Sylvester used to do a mass broadcast through the PA system but she preferred not doing any work and instead sent the Cheerios around classrooms and other parts of the building so that they could be physically reminding of what they were there to see. It wasn’t really about pep, everybody knew that Sue Sylvester used them as practise sessions for the Cheerios where she could gauge the reactions of her crowd.

And it was going to be a pep rally that nobody forgot in a hurry.

Quinn started everything off by announcing the Cheerios, and Kurt took a moment to think about everything.

There had been so many injustices in their school careers that they had felt the need to actively destroy one of their classmates in the eyes of the others. Of course it was for personal satisfaction and to teach him that he shouldn’t go around messing with people, but that was exactly what they were doing. Wasn’t it? Or was it different because they were taming the bully? Thinking in the eyes of the enemy to defeat the enemy. It was a tactic that many used for destruction because it worked. Perhaps too well sometimes. Everyone was feeling a taste for this sort of thing, perhaps except for Brittany.

Kurt, Quinn and Santana were naturally vindictive and were definitely ones for revenge, but Tina was slowly darkening, it seemed. Brittany would always be pure and completely full of joy, there was no changing that. Kurt didn’t know if becoming the type of person Puckerman was being was fully worth the outcome. Kurt definitely wanted to continue with their plan, but more for his own personal gain. He hated Noah Puckerman was the power of a thousand suns, but there was no denying that the KHHHB had overstepped in their efforts. Kurt wondered whether people would see them as the new bullies once this was all over.

Suddenly the spotlight was upon him and the song was beginning and everything was in place. First they would show everyone how awesome they were through song, whilst sending a holier-than-thou message to Puckerman, Finn and Mercedes. Kurt knew that Tina was sending it to Artie too, now that things were going somewhere with Mike.

Kurt was well in the swing of things, the aura of the song capturing him.

(Santana)
Hold up
Hold up
Hold up

Let me make one thing clear
If you wanna keep on runnin' your mouth
Wastin' my time
Then here's what you gotta do

(Brittany)
Go on give it a kiss

(Kurt)
This pot's a-boilin' up
Don't press, press your luck
Run you down like a pick-up truck
Cause I'm a freak without warning

Kurt became so entranced into the song that Santana’s next verse completely passed him by without warning. He quickly got back into the motions of the song as the Cheerios twirled and flipped around him. It was truly an epic routine.

(Kurt and Brittany)
I think you might have missed it
I think you got it twisted
When I told you to kiss it
My biscuit, my biscuit

(Quinn and Tina)
I think you might have missed it
I think you got it twisted
When I told you to kiss it
My biscuit, my biscuit

(Brittany)
Go on give it a kiss

(Kurt)
Who you is tryin' to fool?
Don't broke with the golden rule
You know honey that shit ain't cool
You can't tell me nothin'

(Santana)
You be a parasite
Roll you like a pair of dice S
erve you up, red beans and rice
Yeah I thought I done told ya

(Kurt and Santana)
I think you might have missed it
I think you got it twisted
When I told you to kiss it
My biscuit, my biscuit

(Brittany and Tina)
I think you might have missed it
I think you got it twisted
When I told you to kiss it
My biscuit, my biscuit

(Brittany)
Go on give it a kiss

(Quinn)
I see you baby
Creepin' on me
Creepin' on me
I'm-a put you to sleep

(Kurt)
It on the daily
They checkin' on me
Lookin' on beat
Let me tell you what you need

(Brittany and Tina)
I think you might have missed it
I think you got it twisted
When I told you to kiss it
My biscuit, my biscuit

(Brittany)
Go on give it a kiss

(Tina)
I see you baby
Creepin' on me
Creepin' on me
I'm-a put you to sleep

(All)
It on the daily
They checkin' on me
Lookin' on beat
Let me tell you what you need

They completed their ending pose to raucous applause, the students going crazy for their sexually and verbally explicit performance. Coach didn’t usually approve of invectives in their songs, but she had made an exception for this particular pep rally.

Kurt nodded to the others as Santana took up a microphone.

“The greatest show on Earth is happening in the parking lot in ten minutes. If you miss it, you’ll be sorry you did.”

As the students were dismissed, the Cheerios celebrated another great performance and the KHHHB zipped along the corridors to the parking lot, picking up their supplies along the way.


In position, they waited only a few minutes for people to arrive. It seemed as though their entire class was there to watch. Tina tapped on the car and signaled that they were ready to go. Kurt sat on top of the car passively.

Santana went to the next car over and picked up the paintbrush. Flicking it across the hood, she wrote the word “SLUT” in bright red letters.

“What the fuck? That’s my truck!” Noah Puckerman burst forward from the crowd. “You bitch!”

Santana shrugged. “That’s me. I’m owning my shit. Now you should own yours. You’ve done nothing but fuck up everybody’s lives since you got here, yet you don’t seem to think that you’ve done anything wrong! Now it’s time you learned just how much of a bitch you are. Ready girls?”

At Santana’s count, pandemonium erupted across the parking lot. The Cheerios started by throwing dodgeballs at him with precise execution. Each one hit him in a place where it would hurt. Kurt lazily tossed a water balloon at him which splattered over his head.

“Fuck you, Hummel!” Puck roared once the dodgeballs had been thrown.

Kurt snorted. “When you threw one at me, it had urine in it. Then you beat up my boyfriend for merely talking to me and then ambush us on our date just to tell us you don’t approve. Not to mention the stuff I don’t wish to repeat that went down in the locker room.” Kurt smirked. It had gotten people whispering about him, something that he wanted to achieve. “This is nothing compared to what you’ve done. But I’m going to make it much worse for you, believe me.”

“What about you, Q? You know that our daughter’s back in Lima? Are you going to let them do this to me?”

Quinn swallowed tightly. She knew that he was going to bring up Beth, but she shook it off, having been ready for it. “No.”

Puck smiled falsely.

She walked towards him slowly, meeting him halfway. He put a hand on her arm and she grinned devilishly, bringing her foot up to his tender regions, striking him hard between the legs. It was enough to make any grown man fall to the ground and weep, especially one as sensitive around the crotch as Noah Puckerman.

“Well that takes care of that,” Quinn smiled as the Cheerios advanced, continuing to pelt him with water balloons and the occasional stray dodgeball. Santana took pictures, immediately posting them on social media. She figured that if it was done to anybody else, it would have been incredibly mean and something even she wouldn’t have done. But because it was Puck, it was okay. She was fine stooping to his level just to get back at him.”

Brittany threw the last water balloon, with perfect aim, right at the face of Mercedes Jones.

The girl hadn’t seen it coming, but suddenly she was drenched from head to toe and everybody stepped away from her. Apparently the junior class had already been conditioned to associated the KHHHB’s enemies with their enemies, something that would go down very well with their agenda. Mercedes was isolated, something that they knew she hated.

A quietly whimpering Puck remained lay on the floor as Mr. Schuester walked out into the parking lot. “What is going on here? Kurt, get down from there!”

“Sorry, Mr. Schuester. I can’t do that. It’s a great vantage point.”

“What’s happened to Puck? And Mercedes?”

Santana growled. “They got what’s been coming to them for a long time now.”

Mr. Schuester frowned deeply, walking towards them. “I don’t know what on Earth’s gotten into the five of you, but I’m very disappointed.”

Brittany scoffed. “You’re disappointed in us? Mr. Schuester, that’s so unfair of you. Puck has been a destructive bully since freshman year. Kurt has never had a day at this school where he hasn’t been targeted at least once. You’ve seen it with your own eyes, yet you ignored it simply because it was easier for you not to get involved.”

“Brittany, that’s—.”

She held up a hand. “I’m not finished. You’ve been completely unfair to everyone in Glee who isn’t Finn or Rachel and that needs to end or we’re not returning tomorrow. We have enough extra-curricular activities to apply for the colleges we want to go to and we’re not featured in Glee as it is. Santana got two lines at Regionals and the rest of us got absolutely nothing. You took a practise solo away from Tina just to get Rachel back and Kurt hasn’t got a chance of singing at competition because you think he can only sing Broadway standards. I don’t mind not getting a solo and I don’t believe I could handle it, but the four of them standing here can all win you a competition with their voices.”

Santana nodded. “And if you let Brittany dance, I guarantee you that you won’t even need people to sing. She’s amazing, but you wouldn’t know that. Oh wait, you did let her teach hairography, possibly your worst idea for a lesson to date.”

Quinn paused. “Wait, are we counting Funk week?”

Tina chuckled. “I forgot about that! I think I blocked it out.”

Kurt sighed. “You see, Mr. Schuester, that we’re all bored with the way you run the club. Rachel directs you and then you pretend to direct us. You let us perform sometimes in the assignments, but only if Rachel lets us. Glee is not a student run association but it may as well be. Make some changes, Mr. Schue, or you’ll be looking for five new replacements for the background singing you’re probably going to have us do next week.”

In tandem, they walked away to Quinn’s Lexus, not even noticing that Puck had hobbled his way inside, Finn rushing to help him.

“Things need to change here, Finn,” Puck groaned, “they can’t get away with this. You can make that happen.”

“How?”

“You live with Kurt, right?”

Finn nodded. “I get it. I need to make life for him at home worse than it is at school. He’s definitely done that for me. He told my mom about my report card I was hiding from her.”

“The guy’s a dick and you’re behind enemy lines. I want you to spy on one of their sleepovers, maybe find some things out. Don’t fuck this up, dude.”

Finn sighed. He liked Kurt sometimes, but the way he was running around trying to take over everything and turning Sam gay was not cool. “I won’t.”

“Good. Get Aretha to help you.”

“Who?”

“Mercedes. She hates them now more than ever. She’ll definitely be able to tell you some things about Hummel you can feed to his dad.”

Finn nodded, an idea forming in his mind that would most definitely work.

And he had been meaning to tell Burt about it for a while now.

Now was the perfect time.

Chapter Text

It was a good day.

Kurt was quite satisfied with how things were going in his life. Things with his friends were perfect; their plans were coming to fruition. Puck had had a horrible day after their stunt in the courtyard. Everyone was looking at him like he had no dignity and perhaps he didn’t. Though Kurt wasn’t God, he couldn’t possibly have decided that.

And Tina was growing closer to Mike, which Kurt saw as only a good thing. The two had gone on several successful dates and Mike had confessed to Kurt that he liked her an incredible amount, which only fuelled the ire of Artie, who glared vindictively at all five of them during Glee rehearsal, which was as tense as could have been expected.

Mr. Schuester had addressed the successful Cheerios’ pep rally as the sort of performances to avoid, throwing a harsh glare at the KHHHB and, by association, Mike. Kurt sat rolling his eyes with Quinn as Brittany and Santana pretended that they weren’t focused on each other the entire time.

“It has also come to my attention that there has been some unhealthy rivalries between some of you which I want to get straightened out once and for all.”

Kurt rolled his eyes. “Good choice of words.”

“You know I didn’t mean that, Kurt.”

“Do I?” Kurt replied with bitterness in his voice. “You’re apparently a man of words, not actions, considering the amount of times you’ve helped us out. Have you even spoken to Santana and Brittany since Aretha outed them both in her petty attempt for revenge? No, you haven’t. And I think that that speaks louder than anything you’ve ever done for this club.”

Rachel sighed. “Do we all have to sit through this? I mean, the fact that the Cheerios performed a rude song at the pep rally shouldn’t distract from whatever solo I’m going to sing at Sectionals.”

“Pipe down, Eva Peron, this does not concern you,” Santana snapped and Rachel fell silent.

“Guys!” Mr Schuester interrupted. “I’m sick of you all talking like this.”

Artie frowned. “I’m sorry, but what have any of us actually done? Except, you know, Mercedes going against everything we stand for.”

Tina widened her eyes in shock. Maybe Artie wasn’t everything she thought he was. But that didn’t matter, because she had Mike’s hand in her own and that was more comforting to her than anything Artie had ever done.

Mr. Schuester blinked. “This isn’t about Mercedes. This is about in-fighting between some of you that isn’t going to help us at competition.”

Brittany snorted. “And why not? Puck being despicable isn’t going to affect whatever song you pick for Rachel to sing. And I’m sure we can learn whatever dated, cliché show choir selection you’ve picked for our consolatory group number. Oh but wait, Rachel will sing lead on that, too. You know what, why are we even here? To make up the numbers? If I’ve learned anything from being forcibly removed from the sanctuary of the metaphorical closet by a heinous bitch, it’s that I’m a lot more special this club makes me out to be. I’m starting to own myself as a person and I’m an excellent dancer. Mike’s talent surpasses mine. Yet all we’ve been told to do are simple step-ball-changes and snapping our heads down at the end of every number. I don’t want to take this anymore.”

Kurt, Quinn, Tina and Mike smiled proudly at her. Santana had never been more aroused in her life. She subtly crossed her legs and focused on her breathing.

Mr. Schuester blinked slowly. “Brittany, I…don’t quite know where that has come from.”

Quinn chuckled. “Since Brittany joined the club, she’s been criminally overlooked. In fact, most of us have. The only solo I got was in rehearsal because Rachel wasn’t here and I was dating the male lead. Santana is a by far superior vocalist to me yet she’s had only two lines at competition. Kurt, Brittany, Tina and Mike had none. I don’t even want to mention how you treated Matt when he was here.”

“This isn’t a dance-centric club, Quinn. We don’t have Vocal Adrenaline’s massive numbers or abilities.”

Santana shook her head. “How would you even know that? Kurt, Brittany and Mike have been taking the same ballet class for a decade. They could easily gain acceptance into dance schools all over the country. Quinn and I are more than capable dancers and, now that she isn’t carrying a child, she can show you that. That is, if she wants to be quickly acknowledged and then left in the back of the closet to collect dust.”

“We’re so much more than what you’re giving us, Mr. Schuester,” Tina commented, almost as if it was rehearsed. “We’ve been quiet about it in the past but I for one am not standing by and taking this shit anymore.”

“Tina!”

“Did I do something wrong? I’m surprised you even noticed, considering how overlooked we’ve all been.”

Tina paused and leaned over to Kurt and whispered something, and he clapped his hands quietly and nodded.

“Mr. Schuester, I want the solo for Sectionals.”

Kurt held up a hand. “And before you reply about Tina not being able to demand solos, think about how many times Rachel has acted out when not being able to have one. She literally quit the club because Tina was given a solo. And you redacted your choice and gave it to her because Tina knew that she would quit. And she still did. That isn’t being a team player Mr. Schuester and I think that it’s about time Tina sang at competition.”

Tina smiled. “Further, I want Brittany and Mike’s dancing to be featured. Heavily. And Kurt needs to sing something because he has the most beautiful voice I’ve ever heard.”

Santana shrugged. “Make the right decision, Mr. Schuester. With six less members, you’d have one hell of a time at Sectionals. And what a five you’d have left. Three homophobes, an emotionally manipulative wimp and the literal definition of unbearable. Yes, that’s you Rachel.”

Mr. Schuester sighed. “Santana!”

“Am I wrong?”

In unison, the six stood up together and stepped down from their positions.

“We’ll be back tomorrow awaiting your decision. If Tina doesn’t have the solo, we’re all quitting,” Quinn announced as they left the room.

“And we mean that,” Mike supplied.

“Uh…what just happened?” Finn asked as the rest of the club sat in shock at what had just happened.

Meanwhile, the KHHHB were celebrating yet another victory over their adversaries.

“That couldn’t have gone better. And to think, we hadn’t even planned that,” Kurt cheered as they walked down the hall.

“Do you really think he’ll give me the solo?” Tina asked.

“He’d be stupid to deny you,” Santana shrugged, “your talent speaks for itself and he can’t afford to lose six members right before competition.”

Brittany nodded. “This could be the start of something better for Glee Club. Maybe Rachel won’t be the only member that matters anymore.”

“Oh, she never mattered to begin with,” Quinn dismissed her. “Mr. Schuester was just picking her and Finn for solos because they weren’t controversial. They’re straight, white people, why wouldn’t they be the better option?” She rolled her eyes. “This is why I hate Schue. Always have.”

Mike hummed in agreement. “Let’s just focus on the fact that you guys won in there, that was great!”

Kurt shrugged. “It’s what we do, Mike. And you’re part of this now. We won.”

“I have a feeling something big is coming,” Brittany said. “Soon.”

“Then we’ll be ready for it when it does,” Kurt said simply. “Don’t worry, Britt. We’re on top now. Everyone’s talking about us and they’re starting to learn about our new world order. Things are finally into motion.”


Finn looked over at Kurt, who was typing furiously on his laptop, probably working on some AP homework assignment. Kurt sensed that he was being appraised and looked back, tilting his head before reverting his gaze.

Finn frowned. Kurt was staring at him in a way he hadn’t seen in a very long time. Wasn’t he? Finn had stopped analysing Kurt’s every glance over summer and he was a little rusty at it. It sure looked like the usual glances, didn’t it?

So Finn kept stealing glances at Kurt. Just enough for him to gauge the situation. Puck had planted the idea of Kurt not being over him in his head and now he just couldn’t shake it. He had been through that before and it was not a situation that he ever wanted to repeat.

“What the hell is your problem?” Kurt looked affronted. Finn was seething. This could not happen again. Under no circumstances. Things with Rachel were finally good and he didn’t want to mess that up. Not with Kurt potentially skulking around his personal life. Them living together plus Kurt’s insane plan to rule the school did not make a good equation. And Finn hated regular math. Kurt math was even worse.

“You’re…looking at me. the way you used to last year. It’s not cool, Kurt.”

Kurt giggled. “Oh, Finn. That dark, dark period of my life is long gone. I have a boyfriend now. My attraction towards you was a momentary blip in my streak of good judgement. Get the fuck over yourself. We live in the same house, I can’t exactly avoid catching your eye.”

“Nah, it’s more than that, Kurt and you know it. You don’t think I noticed your leering last year? It wasn’t exactly subtle!”

Kurt looked slightly hurt. “Why are you bringing this up again? I thought Gaga week cleared the air between us about everything. I mean, I know you all but threatened to hurt me not too long ago, but it’s not like I paid attention to that.”

Finn narrowed his eyes. “You’re always underestimating me, aren’t you? I wouldn’t, if I were you.”

“Oh, another threat? Fantastic. I’ll be sure to take that ultra-seriously.”

Finn turned his back, smirking. “Well, just wait until Burt gets home…should be a fun time.”

Kurt sighed heavily. “Finn Hudson, what the fuck did you do?!”

“I don’t like how you’ve been treating the rest of the Glee Club, so maybe Burt should know about what happened when Sam came over.”

Kurt wracked his brain for any infractions of Burt’s rules that he and Sam had perhaps made, but there were none. They weren’t even at that stage yet. Then he realised that Finn wasn’t bluffing. He genuinely believed that something had happened. He flashed back to a few days ago…

“Sam, don’t put it there!”

Sam smirked as he dropped the box onto the bed. “Why not? It’s a perfectly good place to put it! Besides, I’m tired. I’ve been doing this for an hour now and you’re still complaining.”

Kurt rolled his eyes. “You literally begged me to do this, you don’t get to back out now.”

“Every muscle in my body is physically dead, Kurt. A guy can only keep this up for so long, you know.”

“Oh I know, I’ve done it plenty of times.”

“I still don’t understand why you wanted to do it today…after football practise when I’m all sweaty.”

Kurt came up behind him. “But I like it more when you’ve already warmed up. You’re better at it then.”

Sam grinned. “Oh, are you doubting my skills? Because I’ll show you how good I really am.”

“Have you been holding back?” Kurt chuckled.

“I can get it done so much quicker without you talking through the whole thing.”

“I have to talk or else you don’t know what you’re doing!”

Kurt came out of the memory, with a smile stretching across his face. “Yeah, okay, Finn. You tell my dad about that day. I’d love to see his reaction as well.”

Finn frowned, clearly not understanding. He shook his head. “You always talk to me like that.”

“Like what?”

“Like I’m…stupid.”

“Well, if the shoe fits,” Kurt hummed, pretending to dust himself down after entering Finn’s bedroom. “You know Finn, if you don’t want to be patronised, you might want to reconsider your life choices. Your girlfriend is a whiny trainwreck and…let’s face it, you could care more about school. You just think that you’re going to sail by and get everybody help you like you always do. It’s about time you woke up, Finn. And I’m only saying this because we’ll probably be brothers soon and I don’t want to see you drowning in your past mistakes.”

And then Finn’s hand shot out in front of him and connected with Kurt’s shoulder, jolting him backwards. Kurt fell back, stunned, but Finn grabbed the lapel of his shirt and threw him against the wall.

“Where’s your bravado now, Hummel? Maybe the whole school should know that your whole confidence thing is just an act and that you’re really just a weak, prissy bitch!”

Kurt inhaled deeply and brought his knee up to Finn’s groin, making the boy stagger in the process. “You know, fuck you, Finn Hudson! There was a moment where I thought you might have changed! Did last year teach you nothing? Are you still Puckerman’s little Chihuahua? That’s fine. It just means that I’ll have to bring you down along with him. Part of me regrets it, but there’s one part of me that can’t wait to see you taken down a peg or three. You truly deserve everything that’s coming to you, you piece of shit!”

“Kurt!” Carole yelled as she descended the stairs. “What are you doing?”

Kurt sighed. “Damn timing,” he whispered.

“What hell is going on here?” Burt thundered.

Finn, unfortunately, was addressed first. “Kurt is insane! He thinks that because he and his stupid friends are trying to take down the school that he can treat me like crap!”

“Oh that’s not true!” Kurt protested, but was silenced.

“Carry on, Finn,” Burt gestured. “Why are you doubled over?”

“He kinda kicked me…there.”

“Kurt!”

Kurt gasped. “He’s missing out the part where he threw me against the wall and threatened me before using some choice words to describe me. It was complete self-defence.”

“Only because someone needs to put you in check. You think that because you and your friends are concocting some stupid plan that you can dictate everything all the time! Is that one of Sam’s kinks?”

“Finn!” Carole barked and he fell deadly quiet. “You two can’t be fighting like this. Not now, not today!”

Kurt knew it before it was spoken. “What about today?”

Burt sighed, smiling. “Carole and I are engaged, Kurt. You two are going to be brothers soon.”

Kurt shrugged easily. “Congratulations, you guys! We should start planning.”

Finn gaped. “What? I…can’t.”

“Well it’s a good thing you’re not the one getting married then, isn’t it?” Carole smirked.

Finn shook his head. “I can’t be his brother.”

Burt hummed. “Sorry, buddy, it’s not really your decision. Your mother and I are happy.”

“Finn, don’t bring our disputes into this,” Kurt pleaded. “Our parents are happy and a little civility isn’t going to kill you.” Kurt gave him a look that said “but I just might so watch your step…”.

Finn grunted angrily and stormed into his bedroom, slamming the door shut. Carole immediately went in there after him.

Burt turned to Kurt, a serious expression on his face. “I think you and I need to have a talk.”

Chapter Text

Kurt tapped his fingers on the side of the chair as he waited for his father to say what he needed to say.

“What the hell’s going on with you, Kurt? You’ve never acted out like this before. And I’m not the only one who’s noticed a change in you lately.”

Kurt frowned deeply. He hated being in the dark about something regarding him so he urged his father to elaborate.

“I got a call from Mr. Schuester this afternoon, worried about your behaviour. He thinks you and your friends are purposefully alienating people and severing ties with your old friends.”

“That is not accurate!”

Burt held his hands up defensively, fending off Kurt’s impending verbal attack. “It’s just what he said, Kurt. But I have to say, it sounds about right. You’re starting fights with Finn, Mercedes left the house crying before term started. You can’t tell me that Schuester has it all wrong?”

Kurt swallowed heavily, snarling. “Not of all it, I guess. But you’re missing something crucial and it’s only because you don’t really know me. I haven’t severed ties with any of my real friends. In fact, we’re closer than ever before.”

Burt was livid. “What do you mean I don’t know you? Are you trying to imply that I’m not a good enough parent to you because I don’t keep track of things going on in your life? I always vowed to give you as much space as you deserved, which was dependent on your behaviour. You’ve always been well-behaved, so I let you have some adolescent freedom.”

Kurt rolled his eyes. “Oh, this is about you now? Well, I can’t say I’m surprised.”

“What’s that supposed to mean?”

“Clearly you’ve missed the point, again. Allow me to explain. I’ve been friends with Brittany for almost ten years now, Dad. You’ve met her many times, as is the case with Tina. Quinn and Santana are relatively newer to my life and I haven’t had them over here that much. But those four girls are people I trust with unwavering certainty. The so-called “friends” I’m severing ties with are just people you think I’m friends with. It’s all very superficial.

“Mercedes are I were very false friends to each other. She wanted an enthusiastic gay best friend, something which I find abhorrent. In her, I don’t even know what I was looking for. She wanted to join Glee Club, I wanted someone to join Glee Club with. Brittany wasn’t interested at the time and Tina didn’t have the confidence. So I looked to Mercedes when I saw her name on the sign-up sheet.”

Burt nodded, cautiously listening for a moment where Kurt made a mistake.

“When I talked to her, she was thrilled that I apparently wanted to help pick out her audition outfit. I did, but only because she wouldn’t have given me the time of day otherwise. When I told Tina about it, Tina agreed to join with me, because she’s that kind of person. She was terrified, even though she really wanted to join, but she did it for me.”

“Where are you going with this?”

“I’m getting there, Dad,” Kurt forced through his teeth. He hated being interrupted. “So Mercedes latched onto me and subtly tried to force Brittany and Tina out of my life. Then when she realised I was close with Quinn, she told me I was just friends with her because I wanted to be popular. When she learned about Santana, she told me I wasn’t allowed to be friends with her.”

Burt Hummel suddenly loathed Mercedes Jones. That wasn’t cool.

“So you see, people looking at my life from the outside assume Mercedes is my best friend and I only know the others through Glee Club. Mr. Schuester doesn’t see anything that doesn’t involve Finn or Rachel so he doesn’t see the whole picture.”

Burt nodded patiently. “Okay, that makes sense now. Thank you for explaining. But speaking of Finn, do you mind telling me what the hell’s going on between the two of you?”

Kurt made no effort to mask his disdain for the boy in question and Burt rolled his eyes.

“Kurt, you’re going to be step-brothers in no time at all. You need to stop this.”

“And by this, what exactly do you mean?”

“You know, Kurt, don’t act dumb. You’re always one step ahead of everything, I’m sure you know what I’m about to say.”

“Well maybe I’d like to be informed of something for once instead of you assuming that I know what you’re talking about.”

Burt sighed. “Fine. After last year, it’s easy to see how tensions between you and Finn could run high again.”

“I have a boyfriend,” Kurt replied swiftly. “Someone who I actually love and I have less than zero interest in Finn Hudson, romantically or otherwise.”

“This is what I don’t get. One minute you’re trying to get along with him for the sake of this family and the next you’re all but cutting him out of your life and fighting with him. What happened between you and Finn?”

“You mean besides the last five years where he’s done nothing but bully me? Up until this year, I’d never understood why I should stand up for myself. I mean, there were always going to be more bullies, but now I realise that I don’t deserve this. Ever since I can remember, people have treated me differently, badly, even. When we were younger it was because nobody else understood that me liking boys was normal. When we all grew up, I expected them to know better. Well I was wrong and they bully me now because they think I’m out to get them out and convert them or whatever.

“It hasn’t been fun. So far, I’ve had one person apologise to me for the way he acted and that was Mike Chang, probably the least malicious one of them all. All he did was stand there, not wanting to lose all his friends. He never laid a hand on me and never said a bad word about me. It was easy to forgive him because I understand how it is to want to conform so you don’t lose the important things in your life.”

“You mean me,” Burt guessed quickly.

“No, you’re not listening to me. Finn has never apologised for the years of torment I’ve had to endure. He and Puckerman have done so many things that I’ll never forgive.”

Burt grunted. “Kurt, you know I’m always on your side. No matter what. But you have to tell me about these things. Then I can see things from your point of view and have all the facts.”

“You want to know just some of the things that Finn has done to me? Well, okay. I can tell you. As long as you come out of this still wanting us to be a family. Because I can do civility, Dad. I really can. Maybe I’ll never come to like Finn, maybe someday he’ll become something like family, but you and Carole have something special.”

“Okay. Now tell me the story.”


Santana smirked as she slithered around the corner, watching Finn try not to set off the creaky floorboard.

“Eavesdropping doesn’t become you, Hudson.”

Finn jumped a foot in the air and blushed as he realised that Santana had been standing there watching him for quite a while without him knowing. He really did need to pay more attention to things going on around him. “Lopez. What are you doing?”

“Did you just forget that I literally live here and have done for some time now?”

Finn scoffed. “I’m not that stupid.”

“Could’ve fooled me.”

“How did you get through the hall without them seeing you?”

Santana shrugged. “Kurt texted me saying that he was having an important conversation with his dad and I came through the bathroom window.”

“You know what’s going on?”

“Some. I can probably glean the rest out of the tone that Kurt’s using. Things aren’t really going well. I imagine you’re going to have a big talk with Burt after this.”

Finn paled. “Shit.”

“Yeah, Hudson, you’ve been caught. All of those years treating Kurt like a piece of shit has finally caught up with you. And frankly, I don’t know what the hell you think you’re doing teaming up with Roadkill and Aretha because you don’t stand a chance.”

“Why are you all doing this? I get why Kurt and Quinn hate Puck, but the rest of you have no reason to be doing any of this.”

Santana scowled. “Then you’re dumber than you look, Hudson. And that’s saying something considering you’ve got what appears to be ketchup just above your eyebrow.”

Finn quickly reached up and scratched above his eyebrow, bringing his finger to his nose, then to his mouth.

“Gross,” Santana muttered, looking away.

Before Finn could think of a retort, Kurt came stomping up the stairs.

“Santana, I’ve called everyone over. They’ll be here in ten, Brittany’s driving them. Sam couldn’t make it tonight, though.”

Finn snickered. “Brittany can drive?”

“Bite me,” Kurt shot back and nodded his head back downstairs for Santana to follow.

Santana had never really considered herself a follower of anybody in her life, not really deeming many people worthy of giving her orders, even her parents, but Kurt was somebody she knew she would always listen to. Even if she sometimes disagreed with the boy, he was right a lot of the time and that counted for more than most. Kurt never gave her explicit orders, because that wasn’t what friends did, but he was a natural leader and sometimes shifted into leader mode and that was when she knew to follow. Kurt wouldn’t steer her wrong, she knew that much.

“Is Mike coming too?” She wondered as she followed Kurt into the basement.

“Yes.”

Santana knew that when Kurt became clipped and short with her, something was wrong. She assumed that something had come up in the argument with his father that he didn’t want to go over, so she would drop it until he was ready to talk. There was no use pushing Kurt to say something that he didn’t want to. That was counter-productive and Santana was the same way.

They settled on Kurt’s queen-sized bed as he turned to her.

“Do you think we’ve gone too far?” He bit his lip, one of his tells that he was genuinely concerned about consequences. “I mean, I know we haven’t done anything particularly disastrous to the creature yet, but are we in over our heads here?”

Santana frowned. “Why do you ask?”

“No reason.”

Kurt.”

Kurt sighed exasperatedly. “Fine, it’s my dad. He’s got it into his head that this is going to end in us murdering Puck or something equally as dire.”

“Let me guess. He’s put doubts into your head that we’ve gone about this the wrong way.”

Kurt nodded. “Well, yes. I mean, I would love nothing more than to see Puck with no friends and nothing to his name, but I just don’t want to disappoint my dad.”

“I get it, Kurt, but wouldn’t your dad prefer it if you took action of someone who’s made your life hell since kindergarten? Doing nothing doesn’t seem to be the Hummel way.”

Kurt grimaced. “According to him, revenge shouldn’t be necessary because what happened to me was just the result of boys being boys.”

A furious look flashed across Santana’s face as she stood up. There was time before the others got here and she knew what she had to do.

“Santana, where are you going?”

“He can’t do this to you, Kurt. He’s manipulating you so subtly even you can’t see it. He needs to be told that you won’t accept it any longer without completely ruining your relationship. Don’t worry, I won’t say anything untoward, I just want him to know that there are limits to how he can treat you.”

“But—.”

“Kurt, you gave me a place to live when I had nothing. This is the least I can do for you. Wait here.”


Santana tried not to smirk as she climbed the stairs and entered the living room, where she was glad to see that Finn was not present.

“Everything okay, Santana?”

Santana crossed her arms, pleased to see that Burt looked displeased to see her. That was the way she liked it. She instilled derision and fear in people and, even though Burt Hummel was not someone who was to be taken lightly, she was Santana Lopez and that counted for more.

“As a matter of fact, no it isn’t.”

Burt sighed, running a hand down his face. “Why do I get the feeling I’m about to be lectured?”

“Good, at least you’re aware that you’ve fucked up. Mr. H, I don’t say this a lot, but I’m extremely grateful that you’ve let me live here, even if it was Kurt’s idea and we both know that boy doesn’t take no for an answer when he really needs something. The fact that you’ve opened your home to me means more than you know.

“But since I’ve been here, I’ve seen so much more than I expected to see. And that’s not including Finn’s dietary requirements.”

Burt chuckled lightly. The girl had a point.

“Since Kurt and I became friends, he talked about his great his dad is. How accepting you were when he came out, how you encourage him to be himself no matter what the cost. I know about how you stood up for him against Mr. Schuester about the whole Defying Gravity thing and I know that he blew the note for you. That’s a really special relationship, Mr. H. You both do things for the sake of each other and that’s more than I ever got with my parents.”

Burt wondered where she was going with this.

“But the one thing my parents do well is complete honesty. My dad flat out told me I was disgusting when he kicked me out. The thing I don’t understand is how Kurt grew up to be the most honest person I’ve ever met when you’ve never told him the absolute truth. Kurt hasn’t even noticed what you’re doing because he’s so desperate to have a relationship with you. You’re the only family he has left that hasn’t shunned him for being himself.”

“I love Kurt.”

“I don’t doubt that you do. I just don’t think that you like him very much.”

Burt couldn’t believe the audacity. Kurt was his pride and joy, the only part of Elizabeth that he had left. Kurt had accomplished so much in his life and Burt couldn’t have been prouder.

Could he?

“You’re thinking about it, aren’t you? All of those times that Kurt had a ballet recital or a singing performance and you didn’t go because they weren’t the sorts of things you wanted your son to be dabbling in. If you’d had a daughter, you would’ve bought her the ballet uniform with a big smile on your face like Brittany’s father did. Even Quinn’s joke of a father practised her routines with her around the living room.

“Going to River Dance with him is one thing, but actively taking an interest in his life is a completely separate issue. I get it; you’re not interested in singing or dancing or any of that. But your love for Kurt should overshadow that. Let me tell you something. I never wanted to join Glee Club. It was the furthest thing from my mind. Only losers joined, it was uncool. But that day that Brittany came to me and said that she wanted to join Glee Club, I knew that there was no doubt in my mind. I was joining Glee Club because it would make her happy. And that’s how Kurt and I became friends. I think we would’ve been friends regardless because of Brittany, but we connected on a more personal level through mutual interests.”

Burt frowned. “So you’re saying that I don’t like my boy because we don’t have anything in common?”

Santana gaped. “Wow, Kurt’s right. You really don’t listen. What I’m saying is that putting yourself second is more important than being interested in what he’s doing. Hearing Kurt sing or watching Kurt dance is something so special it shouldn’t matter whether you like ballet. I don’t understand why you don’t put all that aside and be there for him.”

“Look, Santana, I never prepared for this. When I found out I was having a boy, I was so excited to take him to sports games and talk about girls. When I realised that Kurt was never going to do that, it took some getting used to.”

Santana rolled her eyes vigorously. “But that shouldn’t matter. Kurt is still a boy. Despite his insistence, he still thinks like a boy. Just because he doesn’t play sports and doesn’t want to fuck girls doesn’t mean he’s not still a boy. And while we’re on the subject, saying that the way that the jocks act towards him is just “boys being boys” is seriously so fucked up I’m starting to wonder if you actually hate Kurt.”

“Santana.”

“No, you need to hear this and Kurt certainly isn’t going to talk to you about it! Clearly I’m not getting through to you, so I’ll ask you this now. How many times has Kurt come home from school with a slushy on him or with bruises on his face? And how many times have you looked the other way and believed whatever bullshit lie he thought to concoct so you wouldn’t worry about him?”

“He could’ve talked to me,” Burt whispered, starting to realise how badly he had treated his son.

“You know as well as I do that he couldn’t have,” Santana retorted. “Kurt wants you to see him the same way you see Finn. As a boy. Apart from the four of us, nobody else does! They just think of him as the honorary girl, the role he’s slipped into because it’s convenient for everybody else. When he was on the football team, the guys didn’t congratulate him for winning them the game once they got back into the locker room. They berated him for showing them up in front of their family and friends.”

Burt gasped.

“When Kurt won Nationals for the Cheerios, we all thanked him for his hard work and celebrated with him once we got back. Then he quit because he didn’t want to be considered a girl. He could’ve done with some support. After the fourteen minute French Celine Dion medley, it was the least he deserved.”

This was the first Burt had heard of Kurt’s accomplishments. He knew he had a solo at Nationals, but he didn’t know the true extent of it. Ashamed of telling his friends that Kurt was on national television for cheerleading, Burt had skipped the event and hadn’t even tuned in to watch it. Instead, he had gone to a bar with his buddies and played pool and drank beer until well past midnight. While his kid was singing and dancing for his life to win a national competition. Sure, it would have been a team effort, but Kurt was the lead soloist, it would be his triumph more so.

“My boy did that?” Burt couldn’t help but whisper.

Santana growled under her breath and Burt was fairly certain he knew what was coming.

Usually, he wouldn’t have let Santana steamroll over him and bitch at him for how he was raising his child, but she was one of Kurt’s best friends and knew him better than Burt himself did, so she was prime to give insight on how to improve. After the discussion he had had with his son about the bullying, he knew he had to do better. Next on his list was Finn, but he would wait until Carole was with him. She had decided take a long bath while Burt and Kurt talked.

Santana hissed. “You didn’t even watch Kurt on TV? Man, Mr. Hummel. I thought it was a travel issue that stopped you from coming to Nationals.”

“That’s what Kurt said?”

Santana huffed. “Kurt likes to paint a picture of you with colours you don’t deserve, apparently. You’ve been good to him, but not at all as good as he makes you out to be. He thinks because you didn’t kick him out after he told you he was gay, that you’re everything a parent should be. Accepting your child for who they are is the bare minimum a parent should do.

“Look, I realise that I’ve probably overstepped, but you needed to hear all of this. Just try, Burt. Try to be the dad he’s always dreamed that you were. He pulled a huge gaslight on himself and made himself think you’re something you’re not. Take a chance to properly get to know the amazing kid you made.”

A knock at the door interrupted Santana’s spiel.

“That’s probably Britt bringing everyone over. I’ll get it. I hope you’ve learned from my Parenting 101, Mr. H. He needs you more than he lets on.”

Santana slipped out of the room, leaving Burt to pretend that he wasn’t crying just a little bit. He had failed as a parent. Elizabeth would be furious at him were she alive.

Santana opened the door to see Brittany, Quinn, Tina and Mike standing to greet her. She rolled her eyes at how much it resembled a Muppets sketch. She took Brittany’s hand and led her in. “Kurt’s in the basement. He has something he wants to say, I think. It’s been a pretty heavy night.”

Everyone shuffled into the basement, Santana giving Burt a meaningful look as she left, trying not to smirk at the disheartened look on his face.


When the five appeared in the basement, Kurt was clutching his phone to his ear, his face paler than usual.

“Okay, thank you, Mary. If there’s anything else I can do, please let me know. I’ll call you if I hear anything. Bye.”

Kurt inhaled deeply and Santana knew that he was trying to stop himself from crying. She also knew that in about three seconds, Kurt would need an strong embrace.

She nudged Mike. “Get ready to hug him.”

Mike frowned as Kurt stood up and clutched his side. The former quickly wrapped his arms around Kurt’s waist. Kurt was shocked at the contact but buried his head into the boy’s shoulder, muffling his sobs.

The girls gave him some space, but Tina and Brittany patted his back every few seconds, making sure he was okay. Kurt gently pushed Mike away and breathed deeply.

“Thank you, Mike. Thank you, girls.”

“What’s wrong, Kurt?” Quinn asked, deeply concerned about her favourite boy.

Kurt looked up, his expression a mixture of both uncontainable rage and worry. “Sam is missing. His phone is off, his family haven’t seen him since he left for school this morning.”

Mike blinked in confusion. “He was at football practice. Oh my god,” he added, face going still.

“What?”

“He stayed behind to do some weight training. Some of the others did, too.”

“I do not like the sound of that,” Brittany commented.

Kurt grinded his teeth together to stop himself from punching something. “Since the school is locked down for the night, he can’t be there.”

“I’ll start the car,” Brittany nodded, anticipating Kurt’s next move and ran upstairs to get the car ready.

“What do we do?” Mike whispered to Santana as Quinn led Kurt to the car.

Santana narrowed her eyes. “We do whatever we can to get Sam back. I don’t think it’s going to be pretty.”

As Mike followed after the Latina, he had the same lingering suspicion.

Chapter Text

Kurt stepped out of the car, slamming the door behind him. Santana got out of the passenger side, stepping up next to him. Brittany, Mike and Quinn assembled themselves so the group represented an arrow formation. Kurt, Santana and Brittany at the head, Quinn and Mike flanking them. It was a natural formation. Kurt and Santana provided offence, with Brittany there to calm them. Mike and Quinn also bolstered their ranks, provided that secondary voice of reason should the former three’s emotions get the better of them.

Tina had gotten a call from her mother to come home, so she had apologized and Kurt had quickly called a cab for her, telling her that they’d keep her updated.

Kurt immediately knew where his boyfriend was. Puckerman had basically abducted him. If this wasn’t already personal before, it was about to get that way, big time. “Everyone know their roles?”

Everybody nodded. Even Mike, who was knew to this particular group, knew exactly what he had to do. Kurt was their main point man, the one who had the most at stake here should this go wrong. The way Mike saw it; it was a childish prank that seemed more serious than it was. And that was exactly what he was at the back, he thought with a small smile. Kurt knew Puckerman’s limits better than anyone, except for perhaps Quinn, and he knew that Sam’s safety was definitely an issue here.

Kurt wasted no time when they approached Puckerman’s house, banging on the door sharply. He briefly thought about the late time of night and Puck’s little sister, but spent no more time dwelling on the issue. Puck made his bed and he was about to lie in it.

It was Azimio who opened the door.

“Well if it isn’t The Powerpuff Girls. Come to apologise?”

Kurt stepped up to the other boy, only having to look up a few inches, but the demeanour in his expression conveyed his message perfectly. “Don’t play games with me, Adams.” Instead of waiting any longer, Kurt slipped through the gap between Azimio and the door, causing the girls and Mike to do the same. Mike didn’t miss the glare that was sent his way as he passed the jock.

Kurt turned back around. “I’ll take the cave; you guys look downstairs. Text me if you find him.” Mike checked the kitchen, Brittany and Santana took the living room while Quinn followed Kurt upstairs. He was bound to need back up.

Mike entered the kitchen to find Anita Puckerman, leaning against the counter, eyes closed while she sipped when Mike presumed was coffee from a plain white mug. He stopped in his tracks, regarding the woman carefully.

“Uh, hello Mrs. Puckerman.”

“Michael,” she said back, staring at him just as much.

“Sorry for barging in here, we’re just looking for…”

“The blonde boy in Noah’s bedroom? Yes, I wondered about that, too. He wasn’t one of Noah’s regular friends. I heard shouting, but I just figured boys were being boys are left them to it.”

Mike tried not to roll his eyes at the phrase he hated so much as he quickly texted Kurt confirmation of Sam’s whereabouts. Bedroom. I’m coming up.

“Not to overstep, but I think you might need to have a talk with your son.”

Before Mrs. Puckerman could respond, Mike left the room, quickly barreling up the stairs, where everybody had already gathered. Kurt stood in front of the door, nudging it open.

“Where the fuck is he?” Kurt hissed as he took in the sight of Puck, absently playing video games.

“Call off the rest of the Ninja Turtles and I might tell you.”

“Now isn’t the time to be fucking with me, asshole.”

“Like I’d wanna fuck with you,” Puck scowled. “But I’m serious. Tell them to leave, I don’t want them in my house.”

Cursing, Kurt turned around. “Wait outside for me? Shouldn’t be too long.”

Reluctantly, Santana and Quinn turned, ushering Mike and Brittany downstairs and out of the Puckerman house.

“That goes for the Neanderthal that answered the door,” Kurt snarled, seeing Azimio creeping behind him.

Puck flicked his wrist lazily and Azimio fled the upstairs floor.

“When did you become head Neanderthal? I’d imagine it wasn’t a democracy since none of you know anything about anything.”

Puck paused his game and turned. “I’d imagine considering you’re in my house that you’ve come to call off your silly little games and apologise.”

“To you? Maybe to your mother when I leave on behalf of humans everywhere for having to raise you. I know Sam is here.”

“Why would you think that?”

“Nobody’s seen him since he was in the weight room, smart guy. It doesn’t take a genius to put two and two together.”

Puck stood up quickly. “No, but you’re way off, Hummel.”

“You sure? So if I call his phone, it won’t ring?”

Puck shrugged, taking a small step closer.

“Come any closer and I’ll absolutely make sure you can’t have any more children.”

Puck sensed the threat was real and nodded slightly, backing up.

Kurt clicked the speed dial for Sam and tilted his head, listening for the familiar ringtone to blare across the room.

And to nobody’s surprise, it did.

Kurt tensed as he heard the noise, trying to locate it properly. “Really? You put him in the fucking closet.”

Puckerman sighed. “Okay, you got me.” He pulled open the closet door, revealing a folded over Sam, unable to move or speak, binds preventing any sort of function. “Before you got to him, Evans wasn’t a bad guy. He was even kind of cool. And now he just follows you around like a diseased little dog who doesn’t know what’s good for him. I’m trying to change that.”

Kurt rolled his eyes. “How many failed attempts on me does it require before you realise that people don’t just change? Now let him go or else you I’ll really make sure you know what pain feels like.”

“Easy on the threats, Hummel. One of these days you might actually find yourself having to put your money where your mouth is.” Puck shrugged and went over to Sam, ripping the tape from his mouth.

Sam panted. “You…fucking…bastard! I’m gonna fucking—.”

“Sam!” Kurt interrupted, making sure the boy knew he was there.

“Kurt?” Sam wiggled, trying to release himself. “Let me go, Puck!”

“Was going to anyway. I’m not a fucking kidnapper. I need to go and pick up my sister anyway. Untie him, my mom will make sure you leave after I do.”

“What if I didn’t come and get him? What then?”

“Look, I don’t fucking know,” Puck spat. “I don’t plot like you and your witches do, Hummel. This was a prank. It wasn’t like Evans couldn’t breathe out of his nose.”

And with that, Puck left the room. Kurt reluctantly moved aside, rushing to untie Sam.

Sam collapsed into him, gritting his teeth. “Kurt, thank god. They blindsided me in the locker room and I couldn’t do anything.”

“It’s okay, I’m just glad you’re okay. Your mom called me and—.”

“Wait, she did? What do I even tell her?”

Kurt smiled. “I’ll make something up if you want. If you don’t want to deal with it, you can crash at my place. We’re having a group sleepover anyway.”

Sam nodded. “That’d be nice. No matter what you tell her, Mary Evans always finds a way to worry, even when she knows the full story.”

Kurt took his phone and clicked the number.

Kurt? Have you found Sam?”

Kurt smiled. “Hi, Mrs. Evans. Yeah, I found him. He lost track of time in the locker room and the janitor locked up while he cleaned. Luckily we got there in time and got the door open.”

Sam shook his head in awe at Kurt’s lie.

Oh, that’s great. I was worrying! Maybe school wouldn’t have been the worst place for him to have been stuck overnight.”

Kurt chuckled. “I agree. I forgot that we were supposed to be having a Glee sleepover tonight, if you want him home, I’d completely understand, I can drive him now.”

“No, no, dear, don’t you worry. As long as I know he’s okay. Could you put him on?”

Kurt affirmed his response and handed the phone to Sam, turning as Sam chatted briefly with his mother, convincing her that it was his fault and that she shouldn’t be worried about him.

Kurt and Sam met the others outside. They were stood by the car, impatiently chatting with each other.

“What the fuck happened in there? Puckerman and Adams came out about five minutes ago, didn’t say a word.”

“It was like we thought. They overpowered him in the locker room and brought him here. Had him fucking tied up in the closet. Some kind of metaphor, probably.”

Sam nodded. “All I got was an earful about how they needed to change me. To be honest, I didn’t really understand this whole scheme until tonight. Now I’m with you all for whatever you want and need to do.”

Kurt nodded, face hardened. “We’ve got some plotting to do, it seems. I’ll just call Tina and let her know that Sam is okay.”


 

Tina felt her phone buzz next to her once more.

Sam’s okay, we’ll fill you in tomorrow. Hope everything’s okay, Tee x

She smiled at the text before looking back up in front of her.

There sat Artie Abrams, itching his wrist and looking at her expectantly.

“It’s been five minutes, are we just going to sit here?”

Tina’s mother had called her, saying that Artie had showed up and wouldn’t leave until he talked to her.

Artie swallowed heavily. “I just wanted to talk to you.”

“Yeah, that much I got. If you’re going to say what I think you’re going to say, then I don’t want to hear it.”

Artie blinked. “I think that you were wrong to break us up.”

Tina smirked. “You’ve got to be kidding me.”

“Why would I be? Look, Tina, we were good together and I know I was a little bit absent while we weren’t at school, but I had things to do.”

“We talked about this,” Tina replied, irritated. “You were playing Halo while I was doing some growing up. We got together before Sectionals, Artie, and I’ve changed a lot since then. My friends have helped me realise that I deserve more than what you were giving me.”

“Like more than a guy in a wheelchair?” Artie fired back.

Tina sighed. “No. Artie, not once have I referenced the fact that you’re in the chair as a reason for our breakup. The fact that you had such a positive outlook on life despite the setbacks you’ve had was one of the things I really admired and respected about you. So don’t use that as an excuse. I deserve someone who’s going to listen to me and make an effort with me and care about me as I am.”

Artie glowered. “You mean Mike Chang?”

Tina shrugged. “I wasn’t going to bring him up, but, yeah. Mike has been nothing but wonderful to me since we went out on our first date. He’s a gentleman without being misogynistic, he doesn’t have to fake being interested in me, he genuinely wants to hear about my day.”

“I did.”

“Don’t pretend like you did. You only ever cared about yourself and having a girlfriend. It didn’t matter that it was me, it just mattered that you had one. I’m not sorry that we broke up, Artie, and you need to leave now.”

Artie took a long hard look at her before nodding. “Okay. For what it’s worth, I’m sorry.”

Tina smiled falsely at he left the dining room. “It’s not worth anything to me.”

Tina closed the front door on Artie, exhaling deeply and leaning against it, resting her head. She felt as though a weight had been lifted, even more so than when she broke up with Artie in the first place.

It was just the beginning for her as the person she knew she wanted to be. With the help of her friends, she knew she could truly be that person. Happy, content, optimistic and confident. It would take some time, but it was worth the effort.

It had to be.