When Mason made his grand entrance into the choir room with his sister in tow, he had to admit that he’d been expecting a bit… more. Maybe some dramatic music, a parade… confetti at the very least. What he got was two other students, looking absolutely scared shitless. This must have been the rest of the “glee club”. Huh.
He recognized the guy just from seeing him around school. He looked like a nice enough kid. Really quiet, always listening to music. Mason didn’t think he had ever seen the guy with his headphones off before, so this was a nice change. Granted, the headphones were still there, hanging from his neck… Baby steps. He did get picked on quite a bit, though… Probably not the best thing for the glee club, but Mason was sure that between him and Madison, they’d be able to shape it up nicely.
And the other girl…
Mason had definitely not seen this girl around school. Mason wouldn’t forget a girl like in a million years. She was stunning.
Mason never really knew what to make of first impressions. He’d had them been proven wrong before, so he was wary to make judgements. But every thought that came from first seeing this girl was a good one. Never had he hoped that his intuition was right more in his life.
The thing that stood out the most about this girl was her eyes. Not in the cheesy romance novel way, like “wow her eyes were as blue as the ocean”, or “golly gee I can’t tell what color her eyes are they are so beautiful and intricate”. More in a, “her eyes are so expressive, so full of passion, I can see right into her soul” kind of way. They looked nervous, but excited. And suddenly, Mason felt like he had known this girl for centuries, even though he didn’t even know her name.
When introductions were made, and Mason learned that her name was Jane, he felt like going all West Side Story and singing it out so the world could hear.
And then Mason heard her sing, and the world shifted a little bit.
Running down the hallways of McKinley with his sister and these two new strangers who for whatever reason, already felt like family, just singing… It was different, it was fun, and Jane Hayward had the most beautiful voice Mason had heard in his entire life.
Maybe Mason was in a bit too deep.
He was staring at her. Was it obvious that he was staring at her? He should stop staring at her. Damnit, he couldn’t stop staring at her.
Jane looked kind of lonely, sitting by herself at lunch. This was only her second day at McKinely, so it made sense that she wouldn’t have made any friends yet. Mason was aching to go sit with her and talk to her, but the Cheerios sitting around him were overwhelming and felt like chains on his ankles.
Madison was rattling on about… God knows what, and every so often nudging Mason with her elbow to prompt a “oh yeah, definitely”, or an “I agree”. He was grateful, because his mind was everywhere but there today.
“I just think that other Cheerios deserve a chance for top of the pyramid, at least for the regional competition. You agree, don’t you Mason?”
Jane was eating a sandwich out of a little plastic container, with the crust cut off and the bread cut diagonally, and Mason decided that it was the single cutest thing he had seen in his entire life. He watched as Jane would lick peanut butter off her lips with the most precise concentration, and wow, he was being borderline creepy now. Just go talk to her.
“I’m going to go say hi to Jane,” Mason blurted. Probably the wrong response, but it felt right.
“Mason, what-” Madison hissed under her breath.
“I’ll be right back,” Mason muttered back, already picking up his lunch tray and walking towards Jane, and it felt as if the force of gravity was pulling him there. This was right.
“I don’t think we’ve been properly introduced,” Mason beamed, sitting down next to Jane. “I mean, like, one to one. I’m Mason McCarthy.”
Jane looked surprised, but she was smiling, and her eyes, God her eyes, they looked hopeful.
“You have an incredible voice.”
“Thank you,” Jane laughed. “You do, too.”
“Mind if I sit with you?” Mason asked.
“Your friends won’t mind?” Jane motioned to where the Cheerios sat, all of which were glaring at him. Damnit.
“No, not at all,” Mason lied swiftly, desperate to stay and talk with Jane longer. “So tell me about yourself.”
Mason wanted to listen to Jane sing forever. So when Miss Berry and Mr. Hummel announced they got to do mashup duets for the Carole King / Alanis Morissette lesson, choosing Jane as his partner was a no brainer.
Jane was certainly becoming more comfortable at McKinley since the beginning. Mason had convinced her to sit with the Cheerios for a few days, but she seemed more excited to sit with Roderick, so Mason convinced Madison to join them. It was fun, and it made the glee club feel that much more like his initial feeling of family.
Mason and Jane were comfortable together. He was happy to say that they were good friends, even if every part of Mason seemed to constantly be screaming that he wanted them to be more. But they were good together. Always friendly and laughing and telling stories, what a true friendship would be. And that felt good, important.
Asking Jane to sing with him, whilst nerveracking as hell, was also kind of the easiest thing in the world. And her enthusiastic yes only fueled his excitement.
Mason savored the time they spent together practicing. The pair got closer, learning more and more about each other. For the first time in his life, Mason felt like he had a best friend that wasn’t his sister.
When it came time for their performance, Mason got butterflies in his stomach for the first time in his life.
And as they sang, as Mason’s ears filled with the sweetest sound he had ever heard, Jane stood up and put her hands on Mason’s shoulders, and when he looked up at her eyes, he knew that whatever he was feeling was mutual. This was something.
Actually dating Jane was probably the best thing to ever happen to Mason. He didn’t know it was actually physically possible to be this happy, all of the time. The more time that passed, the closer they became, and the more real this all felt. When he looked at Jane, the only word he could think of was love. Love, love, love.
He hadn’t said it yet, not in so many words. He never really got the opportunity. He almost said it more times than he could count. But each time, the moment evaded him.
By the time prom rolled around, Mason was getting beyond frustrated with himself. He loved Jane. He loved her so much, and it was time to tell her.
He decided to go all out for prom, because of course, Jane deserved it all. He rented a limo (with Madison and her date, and Roderick and Kitty (who were going together, which was equal parts weird and amazing) but the point is that they had a limo) and got her the most gorgeous corsage that would bring out her eyes. This night was going to be perfect.
Mason’s stomach was entirely composed of butterflies by the time he reached Jane’s door to pick her up. He knocked on the door twice (although there may have been three knocking noises, his hands were kind of shaking), and paced nervously until Jane’s mother (Sadie, the nicest woman Mason had ever met, and apparently Mason’s biggest fan) excitedly opened the door.
“She’s coming right down, she’s just finishing up her hair,” Sadie told Mason when she saw him. “Mason, you look like a Disney prince.”
“Thank you, Sadie.”
“Jane is so excited. You two are going to have such a nice night.”
“I hope so,” Mason beamed, bouncing on his heels.
“Oh! Here she comes.”
If Mason was a Disney prince, Jane was a real life queen. As if she had just stepped out of a fairy tale, her dress was long and full, a perfect shade of green that made her just glow.
Mason couldn’t stop looking. And when Jane looked back, her eyes were saying “I love you”.
“I love you,” Mason blurted, before he could think anything of it, and it was good, it was perfect.
Jane blushed, and Mason grinned wider than he ever had before. Sadie ducked out muttering something about grabbing her camera, leaving the couple alone.
“I love you, too.”
Mason rushed forward and kissed her, forcefully and real and perfect and love and nothing but love.
Madison talks way too much. Mason felt a rush of relief every time he got off the phone with her. After hearing what felt like ten thousand words a minute, that first moment of silence after the beep of the phone felt like heaven.
Mason waddled his way back into the bedroom of his apartment, stopping in the doorway with a smile.
A mass of dark curls rustled and shifted until Jane was looking at Mason, her eyes squinting in the early morning daylight.
“Good morning, sleeping beauty,” Mason said softly.
"Why'd you leave?" Jane grumbled, her voice still masked with sleep.
"Madison is pissed at me for whatever reason. She called to passive aggressively get me to do whatever. I think I hung up mid rant."
"Probably a bad idea."
"Mmm. Well, I had a pretty lady to get back to,” Mason said, crawling to bed next to Jane. “Sisterly drama can wait."
Jane smiled, scootching just a little bit closer to Mason. "Aaw, well this pretty lady appreciates it."
"I hoped so,” Mason said, leaning in to kiss Jane, slow and sweet. Even after all these years, his heart still leapt every time they kissed. "Sleep well?"
"Best sleep of my life,” Jane laughed, rolling over to look at Mason straight on. Mason looked into Jane’s eyes, and he saw everything. Every emotion in the spectrum, all at once, right there. Jane noticed, and scrunched her nose. "What?"
"You know, when I first met you, the first thing I noticed was your eyes. They're so expressive. You can tell everything you're feeling just by looking into your eyes."
"Oh yeah?” Jane challenged. “What am I feeling right now?"
Mason smiled. "Happy."
"Witchcraft,” Jane gasped.
"I told you. It's incredible,"
Jane laughed, loud and long and clear, before leaning forward to kiss Mason softly. "I love you."
"I love you, too."