The Lima town jail was only three miles away from the marriage center, a low red brick building lit only with a few street lamps. As they approached it, Kurt heard Puck mutter, “I hate this place.” He couldn’t agree more.
His hands were cuffed behind him as they were led into the building and processed through. They were searched, cell phones and wallets confiscated and thrown into a black box with a number on it. Kurt was infinitely happy that they had already brought their bags into the center; the police wouldn’t have that at least.
Not that any of it mattered. They were caught. No freedom, no escape. Kurt was certain that he would have a new marriage after all of this, but he couldn’t be sure that he would ever see Sebastian again. As the thought washed over him, Kurt couldn’t help but lean into Sebastian, where he was huddled next to him on one of the metal beds chained to the wall. They were sharing two cells, the boys in one and the girls across the aisle from them. Sam was sitting on the edge of the other bed, watching the girls, or to be honest Mercedes, intently. Puck was crouched in the back corner, absently playing with the edge of his shirt.
“So this was a mistake,” Kurt finally muttered keeping his voice low for the guards listening near the gate.
Sam turned to face him. “I don’t think so.”
“Yeah, quit being dumb Hummel,” Puck snapped. “We would have ended up here anyway. At least this way, we at least tried to escape.”
Kurt fell silent as Sebastian wrapped an arm around him. “What makes you say that?” He asked quietly.
“I feel like this all is my fault. I feel like I started it. I’m the one who picked this first. If I hadn’t-”
“Stop it baby. That’s how they want you to think and it’s wrong. You aren’t the one who made the wrong choice; they are and they made it a hundred years ago.”
“I know, this is just a little-” Kurt jumped as the metal door opened with a bang.
A guard stepped in and help his hands behind his back. “Mercedes Jones and Sam Evans. Come this way, please.” Three more officers came, one with a baton and two others to open the cell doors. The teens stepped through and clasped hands. As they were ushered out, Kurt could hear them both start demanding food and water for the group. He smiled. There was no taming the diva, no matter what.
Twenty minutes passed and a new set came, calling for Rachel and Santana. “What the hell are you doing with us?” Santana demanded as she was led out. Kurt curled into a smaller ball, clutching at Sebastian’s jacket.
“I’m scared,” he whispered as Sam and Mercedes were brought back, pale and shaking a little. But they shared a small smile and sat down.
Sebastian immediately shifted closer to Sam, tugging Kurt along with him. “What the hell is going on?”
“They brought our parents in to watch them question us.” His mouth was tight, shoulders hunched.” They offered us a chance to go back, if we just told them what we knew and why we did all this.” He ran his hand over his face, catching the tears that were starting to well in his eyes. “God, my mom was begging me to come home, but I-” His voice hitched. “I just can’t just do that. Not if she doesn’t want to. And I can’t be that kind of example for my kid. What would I tell them, that I gave up?”
Kurt placed a hand on his shoulder. “You have to make the choices you think are right.”
“This is right Kurt. Even if I spend the rest of my life in jail. But I just hated watching my mom cry like that.”
Kurt swallowed thickly, but there was nothing to say. Rachel and Santana were brought back, their hands still linked and wearing matching looks of determination. Puck was called and brought back only five minutes later.
“I don’t think they liked being told to fuck off like that,” he muttered sheepishly as he was roughly shoved back into the cell.
Finally, the last call came.
“Kurt Hummel. This way please.” Kurt frowned and glanced over to Sebastian, wondering why they weren’t being called together like everyone else, when it hit him. Sebastian would never be offered release. He was supposed to take the fall for all of this. They were supposed to abandon him and let him suffer. It wasn’t like they could bring his parents all the way from Paris, and from what Kurt knew about them, they weren’t likely to come and beg for his freedom. Kurt realized that he would have to choose between him father and Sebastian and his heart froze.
He was led into a small room to the side of the jail; there was a wood table in the middle with his father sitting on one side and an officer on the other. The officer had large brown eyes and black hair slicked back. His face was clean-shaven, with a strong jaw that was currently tense with clenched teeth. An empty chair waited for Kurt next to his father.
The officer turned to face him, his dark eyes tight with something almost like anger if his professionalism would allow it. “Kurt Hummel, you have been brought here on some very serious charges, the biggest of which include treason. I will ask you a few questions, but you should know that we are willing to forgive all of the charges if you will simply cooperate with us. We understand that you are young and we do not wish to punish you for a foolish mistake for the rest of your life. Given that you are still in high school, we’ve brought your father here to testify with you. Do you understand?”
“Yes, I get it,” Kurt responded. He knew he could never pull off the strong and silent treatment, not with his father here. Still, Kurt couldn’t help but wish he could at least hold his father’s hand for security.
“Very well. Kurt, we first need to know how this influence was brought into your life. How much has Sebastian Smythe, your legal husband, affected your political beliefs?”
Kurt was shocked. They weren’t hiding their intentions at all. “I wouldn’t say he’s affected them at all. They’re the same as they always were.”
“How much of your marriage is to your liking?”
“Excuse me?” Kurt was baffled. Just what kind of questions were these?
“Just answer the question.”
“I suppose not much of it. It’s hard to like what you can’t choose,” he snapped at the officer. It wasn’t the whole truth, but they didn’t deserve to know how much he loved his husband.
“I see.” The man pulled a pen from his pocket along with a small notebook, quickly making notes. “And just when did Mr. Smythe begin to harbor a rebellious streak? When did he become dangerous?”
There is was. The answer to what Kurt had suspected before. They were going to pin it all on Sebastian. Well, they wouldn’t have him, not alone at least. “Most likely the same time that I did, right from the beginning, when I first learned how screwed up the whole system really is.”
The officer set his pen down. “This isn’t a game, Kurt. You have been seriously influenced, perhaps for longer than you think. We simply want to determine the cause of this treason. Now, we are prepared to offer you a new marriage, one that you may approve of and potentially in a different city. We want you to have a new start; you mentioned on your profile that you would wish to live in New York. We have several men from there who we would wish to match you with, if you will simply help us in removing a dangerous criminal. We want to help you.”
Kurt snarled at him, “Well, you can help me by not trying to blame my husband for your mistakes!”
“Kurt, you couldn’t have come up with this all on your own. We have your records; you were very active on the forums for the matching site long before you met Mr. Smythe.” He flipped through the notebook. “You wrote, ‘I can’t wait to be matched, finally getting a husband and a new home.’ Now something happened to that boy, someone who was honest and good, and the only change we can come up with is Sebastian Smythe.”
“No,” Burt cut in, moving from his stony silence. Kurt was pleased to see the officer jump a little as well at the sound of his father’s voice.
Burt continued, not looking at Kurt, “He was always like this. A rebellious little brat. Always telling me he was fooling the system online, prancing about, telling me about how he was going to run off. Well, you listen up kiddo.” His father finally turned, looking him in the eye.
Kurt’s throat caught at the nickname and he was flooded with emotion. He simply nodded to show he was listening.
“I’m done with you. You may still have my name, but I don’t ever want to see you near my house again. I don’t even want to imagine you in the country. You can take that damned husband of yours and leave forever. They told me I could have you back. Well, I don’t want you back.”
Burt Hummel stood and moved to the door, where the guards were too stunned to stop him. Kurt tracked him with his eyes, taking in the figure of the man who had been his hero for his entire life. He memorized his father’s image one last time, certain that he would never see him again.
The officer snapped his notebook shut and motioned to the guards to take Kurt back to the cells. Just before Kurt left, the officer spoke. “I hope you’re happy. Now all your friends will suffer.”
Kurt simply nodded. “We already do.”
When he was returned to the cell, the first thing he did was tug Sebastian into a hug. At his worried questions, Kurt shook his head. “I’m fine.”
“Was your father-”
“Yeah.” Kurt smiled sadly at him. “He disowned me.”
“What the hell?” Sebastian’s voice echoed through the prison, so Kurt shushed him quickly.
“No, it’s fine.” Kurt stopped to push back a sob. “He let me go. He called me kiddo and told me to leave. He’ll never be in danger now, not with that on the record. I’m glad about this.”
Sebastian ran a finger just under his eye, catching a tear. “You look it. But as long as you’re happy.”
“I am happy,” Kurt reassured him. “As long as I’m free.”
“You are free Kurt, if only in your heart right now.”
Kurt huffed out a laugh. “That was too cheesy, especially for you.”
Sebastian just grinned into Kurt’s shoulder.