To Dave, it seemed like all eternity, hanging suspended in the air in Kurt's arms, but eventually their feet found solid ground again. And Dave, for one, was a laughing, shaking mess.
"So, so you can just what, make them appear at will?" The blonde nodded, making Dave exclaim happily. "Oh man, that's so fucking cool!" Then Dave remembered himself, and had a glance at the platform they'd just landed on. They were outside a large, circular room at the top of a very tall tower, the tallest Dave had seen yet. The clouds were all far below them, a sea of greyish-purple carpet, but the sight didn't even make Dave feel queasy. He seriously doubted he would ever be afraid of heights again. Not now. "Where are we?"
"This is my place." Kurt led his friend into the apartment. "Not the place I share with Jeremy, but the place I come to be by myself, to think, sometimes." Dave nodded, understanding perfectly what he meant. "There's no other way to get up here, no stairs, no elevator, nothing." He smiled slyly. "Flying's the only way to travel." Dave giggled, then gaped when he saw the inside of Kurt's apartment.
"It's so awesome!"
"I furnished it myself."
The apartment had no walls dividing it. It was one huge, circular room, covered from end to end in stone tiles but with a pile of thick, fluffy rugs heaped at one end, and a set of comfortable looking armchairs and a roaring fire right by it. An impossibly huge and comfortable looking bed dominated the center of the room. Which left the end furthest from Dave, in which there was a deep bath set into the stone floor, and the end adjacent Dave, which held...
Dave grinned, amused. He admired the fine selection of guitars hanging on the wall, and the stellar drum set sitting proudly beneath them. Kurt saw where he was looking, and smiled sheepishly.
"I added those after you told me about the different kinds of instruments. I really like them." He snorted. "Now I just have to learn to play like you."
Play like me. Dave never though he'd see the day when Kurt would be admiring his musical skills. It was surreal, to say the least. But he didn't mention this. "It's a really nice room, Kurt." Dave took it all in, and with a pang, realized he never wanted to leave. "Why don't you just live here all the time? It's so perfect." Kurt's face darkened, and Dave wondered if he'd said something he shouldn't have.
"Because, my Jeremy's afraid of fucking heights."
"Oh." He sighed, and glanced sideways at the blonde. His slim torso was still bare, and his body glowed in the dull fire light. And then Dave realized something. Kurt truly had become an angel, in the purest sense of the word.
He was beautiful.
"What are you looking at?" Kurt went to him, smiling, but his eyes weren't smiling. There was something sad, maybe even whimsical, in his eyes. Dave wanted to smile back, but his mouth was frozen.
"Nothing. I, just... thanks for that fun. Thanks for bringing me here. And thanks, thanks for making me feel so good."
"No problem." Kurt felt his wrist twinge painfully in low warning, and he tried his damn best to ignore it. It was plaguing him. Scaring him. Jeremy.
Especially after seeing Iris in action, as much as he wanted to forget that ever happened.
"You okay?" Kurt had been quiet for a long moment, and Dave was concerned for him.
"Oh, yeah, yeah. I'm good." But then the blonde contradicted himself by sighing. Dave moved closer, both of them now bathed in the glow of the fire. The room was very warm. Everything was warm.
"Are you sure you're alright?" Dave touched his arm for reassurance. Kurt gazed back at him silently, blue eyes blazing, and Dave was hit by memories of what Kurt used to be like. His friend, his band mate. Alive. And for some reason, remembering that friendship they had once shared made Dave feel very conflicted inside. Conflicted for a lot of reasons. Some of which he had no desire to know or understand.
"Dave," Kurt murmured, voice soft, eyes gentle, and Dave then noticed how closely together they were standing. Sharing each other's space. Much too close. "You, trust me, don't you?"
"Yes. I jumped for you."
"And I didn't let you go."
Dave's breath hitched in his chest. "That's right. You didn't." Kurt's eyes had lost some of their sadness, but they were still steadfast and solemn. Not dead eyes, at all...
"You trusted me then." Even closer, too close to ever be allowed, Dave's stomach performed an uneasy backflip but still he didn't move away, he couldn't move away. "Trust me now, Dave." His head tilted forwards, in slow motion. Everything lost it's focus yet became remarkably clear at the same time. Dave seized up.
"Ssh." And then his lips and Dave's lips were together, only light and chaste, but a kiss is still a kiss. Dave's mind melted, stupefied him to the point that he could barely process how incredibly soft and warm Kurt's lips were. Such perfect lips.
Then he came to his senses.
"N-no!" He broke away. "What are we d-doing?"
"Dave!" Kurt reached for him stubbornly, drawing Dave's head down to his, and kissed again. Harder. faster. deeper. Dave's rough beard scratched against the curve of Kurt's cheek, but the blonde loved it. He kissed harder. It overwhelmed Dave and he promptly fell into Kurt's arms; the little man was small but incredibly strong, and the kiss deepened, and two mouths swiftly became one. Dave shuddered, pressing deep. Already, he was addicted to Kurt's taste. He was addicted to Kurt, period. He spasmed a little when he felt the desire coursing through him, and then his body was no longer his own, doing whatever it pleased. Of their own accord, his hands grazed across the smooth skin of Kurt's back, over his spine, making Kurt arch and moan. Kurt gasped softly into Dave's open mouth. He filled Dave with a kind of sweet heaviness he'd never felt before, but knew he'd have to feel again.
Their mouths separated, but their foreheads stayed pressed up against one another.
"H-how can we? How can this..?" Dave was flustered, and fevered, but Kurt soothed him.
"Hush now. It will be alright. It will." And they kissed again.
It was deep in the early hours of the morning by the time Kurt crept back down to his room, dropping off Dave on the way. They'd said good night, both grinning like a couple of idiots, and kissed again before parting.
Kurt smiled to himself. Dave was a great kisser.
His tattoo twinged, and Jeremy turned from the bed to stare at him coldly. "Iris came," he said flatly, and then Kurt remembered.
"Oh, oh my God," he groaned. "Jeremy, I-" But Jeremy was far from interested in excuses.
"You were down there when She came, weren't you? You were, don't bother answering. I could feel it. I could feel your death." He shuddered, obviously angry yet listless at the same time. "It was awful. I was so sure She'd come for us. And when it was over, and She left, I was sure that you'd come for me, and we'd heal together." He paused, and the silence drew out like a blade. "But you never came."
"Shut up. I know were you've been. You were with Dave. That's all you ever do. You spend time with him, you're his whore. Did you let him fuck you, tonight? Did you suck his cock?"
Kurt flamed. "You have no right to ask me these things, since this was all your doing in the first place-"
"My tattoo was killing me today. It's gonna fade! You keep this up, and it will any day now! Iris will fucking come for us! You're killing us both here!" But that was too much injustice for Kurt to swallow. He rounded on Jeremy, infuriated past the point of no return.
"This is your fault! This is all your fault! You use me as fucking leverage! And you lost the fucking bet! You sold me to him! He owns me for the rest of the month, and it's all your fucking FAULT!!" Kurt cried out, brain boiling with rage. "Well fuck you, Jeremy. Fuck you!"
"No, why don't you go fuck Dave? Let's see what he does to save you when your tattoo fades and Iris comes to collect!"
"You know what?" Kurt spat in a poisonous whisper. "I-" But then he cut himself off, jerking convulsively, as a tremendous bolt of pain struck both Jeremy's and his own wrist simultaneously. They both howled in pain. Kurt fell to his knees, his muscles weak. He was trembling. "Jer," he murmured once he trusted himself enough to speak. "Please. We have to stop. We can't keep on fighting like this. We have to stop, for both out sakes."
"It's too late for that." Jeremy had fallen back against the bed, and his face was deathly pale. "We can't save ourselves, now. It's over." Kurt could only watch him helplessly from the floor. "It's only a matter of time, now." The blonde felt a powerful mixture of anger and guilt, as Jeremy opened his arms. "Come here." Kurt went to him, and crawled into bed, fell into his arms, and some time later, under the gaze of the rising sun, they finally got the healing they so desperately needed.
"Dave!" Siri called out, and ran to him, concern etched all over her face. "Oh Lord, She was here, wasn't She? She was near you! Are you alright?" Dave looked up at her. Despite the recent encounter of Iris, there was a small, dreamy smile playing about his lips.
"He kissed me," he said incredulously. "We flew and then he kissed me." Uh-oh... Siri eyed him cautiously.
"Kurt? Do you mean to say you kissed Kurt?" She watched as the smile enveloped into a grin, and she had her answer. "David! What exactly do you think you're playing at, huh?"
"...He's a great kisser..."
"It's not safe, Dave. You're becoming too close to him."
"...The softest, nicest lips in the whole universe..."
"If you keep this up, he's going to get hurt. No good can come from this."
"...Silver wings. So beautiful..."
"Dave!" Siri snapped, her tone so harsh it was practically a command, and Dave jumped like he'd been scalded by boiling water. "Snap out of it for a second!" She shook her head slowly. "I don't believe it. How could you do this? Do you still not understand the risks involved?"
If there was one thing that ruffled Dave's feathers, it was being told off. He immediately became defensive. "Hey, would you relax? It was just one kiss. Just one kiss, Siri. Besides, it, it was an accident." What an excuse. Siri snorted in her disbelief.
"Just an accident. Oh yes, I believe that very much." Her voice dripped with sarcasm. "Dave, it's obvious. I see the way you look at him. I hear what you think. And I know he was your friend all that time ago, when you were both alive. I'm not saying there's anything wrong with being his friend once more. But..." And her words slowed as she began to choose them more carefully. "Don't you think it could be a possibility that what you once felt for Kurt, is well, is turning into something more?" She watched for his reaction apprehensively. He gaped at her.
"What? No! No, it's not like that at all. I mean, he's very, I dunno, nice and all, but you've got to understand. Kurt's my very good friend. He always has been, and he always will be. But, but I don't think I could ever seriously think about Kurt in that way. It's far too... I don't even know how to explain it..."
"You kissed him, though."
"He kissed me, actually." Dave was quick to defend himself.
"Yeah." And now, Siri was smiling a secret smile that Dave didn't particularly trust. "But you kissed him back, now, didn't you?" He opened his mouth to argue, but after a second, promptly closed it again, admitting to himself that this time, he might not have an argument.
"I... suppose you're right," he muttered in a begrudging tone. Siri was silent, and Dave felt compelled to go on. He hated that Siri had that kind of power over him. "It's so strange though, and you'll have to bear with me, because I don't really know how the hell I'm going to explain it."
"I've got an eternity to listen, Dave."
"Right." Something about this made him feel very uncomfortable. Why does she care so much, anyway? "Well, uh, oh fuck, where do I begin? It's... it's almost like Kurt's a completely different person. Or rather, two people at the same time. On the one hand, he's the old, sweet, troubled Kurt that I remember from fifteen years ago, the great friend I once had. And I don't think I could ever think of that Kurt in a sexual way, not seriously, because I think of him too strongly as a friend. But then, there's the other Kurt, the new Kurt, who I'm just getting to know now. He's... he's very different."
"Well, I think I might be attracted to him." Siri raised her eyebrows and blinked coolly. Dave blushed. "And don't get me wrong, Kurt's an incredible person as he is, but..." And a touch of guilt crept into his voice. Dave hesitated, looking lost.
"But what, Dave?" Her question encouraged him gently.
"But, but I really miss my friend." Dave was inspecting the ground carefully, as if fascinated by it. "And I'd do anything to have him back."
"Kurt really likes you, you know."
"Yeah." Dave's shoulders slumped. "I really like him, too. But I know, I know that if he still remembered me, then he wouldn't like me how he does now."
"Are you okay?"
He sighed. "I suppose so."
"Make sure Kurt treads carefully, alright? He and Jeremy still share their connection. I felt it last night. But it's weak, and I fear they may have already given up hope. Please... you have to help me look after Kurt. I don't know why, exactly, but it's vitally important that he stays safe. Soon, something is going to happen. And I need you both to be around when it does."
"What, Siri?" Dave was fearful. "What's going on? What's going to happen? Just tell me, tell me what's going to happen!"
But Siri couldn't tell him. She didn't know herself.
Kurt glared at Dave with hatred. Real hatred. So intense it was frightening.
"How could you do this to me?" he spat, wounded, but Dave remained steadfast.
"You did this to yourself, Kurt. You wouldn't get off the drugs. We told you what would happen, but you were heedless. Now, this is the only option we have left."
"Fuck you. Traitor."
"Believe that if you will, but rehab is the only way for us to ensure you live through this."
"By blackmailing me?" Kurt was desperate and wild. "By taking away everything I have? Leaving me with nothing? You, you're not saving me. You're fucking killing me."
"You're destroying everything! You all are! Just... just get out of my house and leave me alone, you fucking bastard! Get out of here!"
"Kurt! Shut up and fucking listen to me for a second-"
"No! You've said enough! I don't want to see you anymore, any of you! Get out! Get out of my house and leave me the fuck alone! You're fired. You're all fucking fired!"
"Kurt!" They made a grab for him.
"N-no!" The blonde was frantically struggling, his eyes glazed over, insane. Then his gaze fell back to Dave, and locked on him, and they filled with a poisonous rage. "You! I hate you!! Get out of my house and I never want to see you again! You fuck! You cunt! I hate you!"
Dave fell back, stung. "Kurt, please-"
"Shut up." Kurt was sobbing in anguish.
"I hate you, Dave, I hate you and I hope you fucking die!"
Dave broke. "Kurt! Shut up, you fuckwit!" He rushed at Kurt and his flailing fists lashed out at him, searching, hitting, just wanting the stupid singer to shut up for a second so he could tell him how much he loved him.
He realized what he was doing then, and jumped off of Kurt with a terrified cry.
The unresponsive, unconscious singer fell to the floor.
There was to be no beating around the bush, to put it one way. To put it in another, more straight-forward way, Dave had decided it was time to clue Kurt in on what Siri had been telling him. "Kurt? Can you sit down with me for a sec? There's something I wanna talk to you about."
"Can it wait?" Kurt's eyes were shining with enthusiasm. "Because there's this thing that I really want to show you."
"But Kurt-" The blonde cut him off with a gentle kiss, and Dave gave up on resisting as Kurt's lips caressed his own in that perfect, special way.
It was irresistible.
"Dave," he breathed warmly. "Let me show you, before I lose my nerve."
"Your nerve?" But Kurt had already bounded away, and was returning with the shiny, new acoustic guitar Dave had given him.
"I wrote a song, Dave."
"I wrote a song."
Already? But Dave's amazement only ran so deep. On another level, he wasn't that surprised at all. Playing guitar was one of the many things Kurt was naturally good at. Another was kissing.
"I had to turn it 'round the other way though, cos I'm left-handed and all." He sounded almost apologetic, and this time, Dave was surprised. He'd completely forgotten Kurt was left-handed. He'd taught himself how to play a right-handed guitar, all on his own.
"That's... that's perfectly fine, Kurt." And with that, Dave had forgotten the urgency of their talk. "I'd love to hear your song."
Kurt beamed. "Cool." And he played.
Dave was immediately blown away.
"I will never bother you
I will never promise to
I will never follow you
I will never bother you
Never say a word again
I will crawl away for good."
Dave bit back a moan. Of course, he instantly recognized the song. Whether Kurt remembered or not, a part of the old him that Dave had known was still locked away inside, somewhere. Had to be.
Kurt was playing one of the last songs he'd written before passing away. 'You Know You're Right'.
Dave held his tongue and his breath, completely silent. Kurt went on, singing in that beautiful, husky voice that Dave was so completely in love with.
"I will move away from here
You won't be afraid of fear
No thought was put into this
I always knew it would come to this
Things have never been so swell
I have never failed to feel."
Pain, you know you're right
You know you're right,
You know you're right."
Kurt opened his eyes, and saw the expression on Dave's face. "Hey, are you alright?"
"Did I suck? Aren't I doing it right? Gee, I'm sorry. I don't want you to have to sit here and listen to shit."
"O-oh!" Dave composed himself as best he could, and rushed in to soothe Kurt. His mind was still a fuzzy mush from listening to Kurt's gorgeous song. "It's not shit. It's not shit at all." He sighed, and his breath hitched a little in his chest. It was painful and nostalgic. "On the contrary, it's a beautiful song. You play wonderfully, Kurt."
Kurt blushed a deep red. He was very, very pleased. "Really? Thanks."
"The pleasure is all mine. Really." They shared a smile, and the atmosphere changed suddenly and all at once. Kurt moved close to him, and rested a hand lightly on Dave's thigh. The touch was something electric.
"Kurt." Their open mouths melted together, and they shared their oxygen. Kurt shifted, he let one of his hands toy idly at the nape of Dave's neck. It felt cool and sensual. Dave felt his mind and body beginning to lose themselves to Kurt's master touch, and it took all of his will power to break himself free of the spell. He placed a hand on Kurt's chest, holding him back. "Kurt." He broke the kiss. "Wait."
"What's wrong?" Kurt crooned, breathing into Dave's ear. Dave's mouth went cottony dry, and he almost lost himself again.
"W-wait, Kurt." The words came out as a garbled moan. "We need t-to talk about this."
"I don't want to talk." Kurt was stubborn. He began to kiss the crook of Dave's neck, parting his lips, sliding his tongue up and down and over damp skin. Dave's head fell back and Kurt steadied him with his hands. "Don't be scared, Dave. It's okay."
"N-no." Dave's eyelids fluttered, he was feeling the onset of incredible desire now, with pangs so sharp they hurt, and made him feel faint. "Not... okay. Kurt, p-please. Listen." But Kurt didn't listen, deciding instead to make a meal out of Dave's stubbly jawline. "This is too...
d-dangerous." Kurt finally stopped ravishing his neck and sat back a little, regarding Dave with a wide, oceanic stare. Dave found that soulful gaze to be almost as hard to resist as the kisses on his neck.
"Dangerous?" Kurt feigned confusion. "Dangerous, how?"
"Kurt." Dave was getting his breath back, finally. "Don't play dumb. You know full well why this is so dangerous. What about Jeremy? What about the tattoo? Iris? Everything?!"
"Don't worry about stuff like that, it can't hurt us."
"But it can hurt us!" Dave pleaded with Kurt to understand. "Kurt, I need you to realize that, that I just don't want to lose you a-" But he shut his mouth over the words before he could say again.
"Dave." And the blonde was becoming impatient. "Would you stop worrying, already? Sex isn't going to hurt me." He suddenly became filled with spite. "I've been having sex with people who aren't Jeremy for fifteen years, now, and it hasn't hurt me yet. Well at least, not in that way, it hasn't."
"But that was different."
"How was that different?" Kurt challenged him, and he began to doubt himself.
"Well... you had sex with those people because Jeremy was in their debt."
"Jeremy's in your debt, too."
"Yeah, but..." Dave was feeling more and more insecure. Kurt's indifference was unnerving him. "But it's still different. Because all those times, you did it because you had to. They asked you to, made you." He paused. "I've never asked you to. All I've done is stopped you."
"Why?" Kurt was defiant, curious, insulted, all rolled into one. "Don't you want me?"
"That... that isn't the issue, here. I think the problem is, you want it.. And, and I don't think you're allowed to." Dave backed right off as Kurt's eyes narrowed to become chips of ice.
"Oh," he snapped dryly. "I see. Oh yes, that's fair, alright. Jeremy can use me to pay off his fucking debts, and that's fine, but if I actually begin to enjoy spending time with someone, and not detest what they're doing to my body, then it becomes a crime?"
"Hey! I didn't ask for this, okay?" He had to defend himself. A part of him was aching, where Kurt had violated him. It's just like all the other times... he sees me as being the same as Them... he doesn't really care. "All I'm saying is that if you want to be with me instead of being with Jeremy, then you're going to get hurt."
"You know what I think?" Kurt's voice was low and silky. And as dangerous as Dave had ever heard it. "I think you just don't want to be with me, because you don't want to have sex with me."
"Well, you know what?" Dave snapped right back. "You're spot on. I don't want to have sex with you, I've never wanted to have sex with somebody less in my fucking life! And you know why? I'm fucking scared, Kurt! If you haven't noticed, I don't have a tattoo yet, either! I have to get out there and find my own friend, because I have no intention of ending up like you and fucking Jeremy. And if you were half-way sane, you'd do the same." But Kurt wasn't prepared to take any of that.
"Hey, hold on for one fucking minute. You make it sound as if I'm doing this out of my own free will! I'm only here because you own me, remember?"
"Don't be ridiculous." Dave wasn't yelling anymore. A great sadness had overtaken him. He doesn't even want to be here... and why would he? It's not like I ever even asked him... "I never owned you, Kurt. I won't force you to stay."
"Oh, really?" Dave's anger may have dissipated but Kurt's was in full swing; he felt humiliated and appalled. Oh God, he thinks I'm a fucking whore. Probably because I am. He was angry at himself. Angry at Dave. Angry at Jeremy, at fucking everything. "Well if it wasn't for the fact that you owned me, I most definitely still wouldn't be here!"
"Well then." Dave turned away. "Why don't you just go?" No don't say that no don't you SAY that! But he couldn't stop himself in time. And then it was too late to take it back. Kurt glanced up at him, and he was broken.
And without looking back, he left the room.