mzminola: knees-down view of a kid in white stockings and black shoes who is standing on tiptoe. (Default)
[personal profile] mzminola
Title: Drummer Boy
Author: mzminola
Fandom: Glee!
Genre: Alternate Universe
Premise: What if Finn never sang in Glee club, because he was already in Jazz Band?
Rating: um...as high as the show itself, plus extra for swearing.

Warnings for the fic as a whole: Anything the show has is likely to show up here, so pretty much all of the bullying and phobias and barfing and other issues. If you are worried about specific triggers please let me know and I can give you a heads up.



Trent was feeling a little more relaxed in Glee club by now, and daring enough that morning to walk over to the hat, after Puck pulled Mercedes’ name and Artie pulled Quinn’s. Trent got Kurt’s name and grinned. “I already know what song to do,” he said.

“That’s great, Trent,” said Mr. Schuester, clapping his hand on Trent’s shoulder before Trent walked back to his seat.

Tina walked up to the hat next, and read in a confused voice “Other Asian.”

Trent, already sitting down in the back again, gaped. Didn’t Mr. Schuester know Mike’s name by now? Couldn’t he have written some other description if he didn’t? Like “guy who can pop-and-lock” or “football player who isn’t Matt or Puck”? Anything besides “Other Asian”?

He tuned back in to the proceedings as Rachel said “I guess that leaves me with you, Mr. Schue,” with irritation. Now Mr. Schuester looked like he regretted putting his name in the hat and was trying to back out. Trent had been too stunned to say anything when Dakota Stanley was awful to Mercedes and Artie and everyone, and Mr. Schuester was no Dakota Stanley, but he was here, and Trent said “You did say the hat was how Fate would choose, Mr. Schue.”

Then Artie asked for clarification on the type of songs they needed to do, and always-prepared Rachel Berry had an example song. When Mr. Schuester tried to get out of that Trent said “But that really is a good song to demonstrate with.”

Then he leaned back in his seat and watched Mr. Schuester squirm. Trent felt like a jerk immediately, but reminded himself he wasn’t the one who had written Other Asian for the hat.

~

The next day after French class, which they now sat together in, Kurt asked Trent what song he’d had in mind.

With A Little Help From My Friends,” Trent said. “I guess it’s to Glee club as a whole.”

Kurt smiled. “An excellent choice,” he said. “I should find another Beatles’ song, we can make it a theme.”

A short time later, Finn intercepted Kurt on his way to his Navigator.

“Dude, I need your help,” said Finn. Kurt’s heart did something fluttery and he was pretty sure his eyelashes did too. “I’m supposed to have dinner with the Fabrays on Sunday and you gotta help me figure out what to wear.”

Well that was both flattering and disheartening. “I’m at your service,” Kurt said gallantly. Finn nodded and let out a pent up breath, then turned and leaned against the door of the Navigator. Kurt copied him, and they both stared absently across the parking lot.

“…did you mean right now?” Kurt asked after a minute of just enjoying the fact that Finn Hudson was talking to him outside of class or football, and that Finn Hudson was touching his baby without Quinn there, and that Finn Hudson trusted him enough to help with a fashion dilemma.

“Oh, sorry,” Finn said. “I was thinking Wednesday would be good. Enough time to find something different if the stuff I’ve got doesn’t work.”

“Wednesday’s great,” Kurt said. Another minute passed in silence. “…something on your mind?”

“We found out at the last visit that she’s a girl,” Finn said. “The baby, I mean, not Quinn, we already knew that. And I just…I can’t stop thinking about her. Quinn’s looking for adoption agencies, and they’re all closed adoption, which is what Quinn says she wants. And I like, looked into open adoption agencies, because Miss Pillsbury said they exist when I told her how freaked out I was at the thought of never getting to talk to my daughter. But like, it’s only a couple states, and you have to be from there, and we’re not, and you can do it privately but since it’s a lot of contract stuff you need a lawyer, and we can’t get one, Quinn yelled at me just for mentioning it.”

This was the most words Kurt had ever heard Finn say at once.

“Is there any reason you’re telling me this?” Kurt asked.

Finn scuffed at the cement with his sneaker. “I thought it would help. Quinn won’t talk about anything, and Miss Pillsbury’s great but she’s not…I dunno. I guess I thought talking to someone else would help, and you’re already kind of involved, ‘cause you’ve been awesome about driving us, but now I kind of feel worse.”

Oh, ouch.

“Not like, not like you make it worse,” Finn said hurriedly. “I just…like the more people I talk to, you and Quinn and Miss Pillsbury, the more I realize the one person I really want to talk to is her, and I’m never gonna get to.”

“Oh,” Kurt said. Dirt on wood and flowers on stone, and never saying anything to her not because he wouldn’t know where to start, but because there was nowhere he’d want to stop. But in eighteen years, maybe, if she was curious, and he left himself out there to be found, Finn’s baby girl could find him. They could talk, and catch up. Not like…not like dirt on wood and flowers on stone

But maybe in eighteen years would be scant comfort, Kurt knew, so he didn’t say it.

They watched in silence as the other cars pulled out of the lot, and then the busses were revving their engines.

“Do you want a lift home?” Kurt asked.

“That’d be great man, thanks,” Finn said, some of his usual good humor returning to his face. They got in the Navigator, and Kurt clicked over to the Classic Rock station, volume low, and an idea struck.

“Did Quinn tell you we’re doing ballads in Glee club?” Kurt asked.

“I thought those were poems,” Finn said. Kurt smiled.

“They’re songs, too. Mr. Schuester said it’s for storytelling, and for telling someone how you feel.”

“Cool,” Finn said. Kurt waited for the busses to pull out, and then turned the Navigator on. He spoke again as they pulled out of the parking lot.

“It won’t be the same as talking to her,” Kurt said. “But…maybe you could sing about it? Sing to her. You always sing along with me and Quinn on the radio.”

“That…” Finn nodded. “Yeah.”

Kurt turned up the radio then, and they spent the drive listening to it without singing, just Kurt flexing his fingers around the steering wheel and Finn tapping his knees. When they reached Finn’s house Kurt pulled over to the curb.

“Thanks,” Finn said, as he got out. “For…you know, all of it. Thanks.”

“Anytime,” Kurt said with all his heart.

~

When Quinn was a ways down the hall after yelling at Finn, Puck sidled over and fell in step with her. Far behind them, Kurt was talking with Finn.

“So he told his mom, huh?” Puck said. Quinn snorted, but didn’t answer. “You know, I wouldn’t tell my mom, not if you didn’t want me to. And no one’s learned anything about this from me.”

“That’s because there’s nothing to learn from you,” Quinn snapped.

“Hey,” Puck said. “You and I both know that’s not true.” She shot him a glare. “Finn’s a blabbermouth,” Puck said. “He was the one freaking out in the locker room, not me. Now he’s told his mom. You know it’s only a matter of time before he does something that gets word to your parents.”

Quinn rolled her eyes, and stepped through the door to her class, leaving Puck in the hallway.

~

“When are we going to do that makeover you mentioned?” Kurt asked, taking Quinn’s arm after Glee club.

“Friday would be good,” Quinn said. “I’m afraid it won’t be very high-fashion though. I need to look as sweet and innocent and un-pregnant as I can for Sunday.”

“Isn’t that when Finn’s coming over for dinner?” Kurt asked. They both stepped to the left to avoid the sticky remains of a Slushy on the floor.

“Exactly,” Quinn said. “And don’t think I’m not mad at you about that singing to the sonogram mess. If you hadn’t told him to do that, his mom never would have found out.”

“I didn’t specify the sonogram,” Kurt said. “And maybe if you actually listened to him instead of blowing him off every time he tried to talk about his feelings, he wouldn’t have needed to do that.”

“There’s nothing to talk about,” Quinn snapped. They ducked in tandem as a football flew over their heads. “The more people he blabs too, the higher the chance of it getting back to my parents, and then I’m dead.”

“I used to think that,” Kurt said. “About being gay, and my dad, I mean. But…he was fine with it.”

“Well my parents aren’t your dad, Kurt,” Quinn snapped. “Look. I had three big achievements Freshman year. I made Honor Roll, I became captain of the Cheerios, and I got voted President of the Celibacy Club. And out of those three things, do you know which once my parents were most proud of?”

“…the last one?” Kurt ventured.

“The last one,” Quinn confirmed.

~

Finn drapes the blue striped tie over his neck as Kurt steps back. He does look good. But looking good won’t help him be as brave as his dad was, and he says so.

Kurt says that a good suit is to a dinner party what a set of armor is to a battlefield, and Finn nods, but he’s still scared. Kurt wears his clothes like armor to school all the time, and it doesn’t seem to protect him much, as far as Finn can tell.

Maybe that just means there’s something Finn isn’t seeing.

He wishes he knew what.

~

“Is that Susie Pepper talking to Rachel over there?” Artie asked, gesturing. Tina glanced over.

“I think so.”

“Should we intervene?” Artie asked. If there was anyone at school as intense as Rachel it was Susie Pepper, and he was worried a clash of the two might cause the school to explode.

“Hell no,” Mercedes said, and that was that.

~

“You’re an idiot,” Puck said, swinging around the corner and coming face to face with Finn.

“Oh, so now you want to talk?” Finn said, trying to step around. Puck stopped him with a hand to his chest. “What is your problem today?”

“My problem,” Puck said. “Is that you’re an idiot and a coward who talks about how upset he is about everything but won’t actually man up and do anything about it.”

~

Saturday afternoon, almost all the kids from New Directions gathered at the school; Artie had convinced Brad to be their faculty supervisor for the day. He’d also gotten the band kids to run through Lean On Me on Friday, including Finn, who, according to Artie, was really happy that the whole club was coming together to sing to Quinn, and promised not to ruin the surprise.

Quinn wasn’t there, of course, Matt was still gone, and Puck and Rachel both had family obligations that day. Mercedes and Kurt were the last to arrive, having both come in Kurt’s Navigator.

“Where’s Puck?” Mercedes asked, as they sat down.

“Family stuff,” Trent said from the back as Kurt waved to him. Lean On Me wasn’t the Beatles, but it was still good.

“Surprised he didn’t consider this family stuff, the way he was talking earlier,” Mercedes said. “Did anyone else know he’s Quinn’s baby’s daddy?”

Everyone in the room pretty much exploded, and Kurt didn’t hear a word they said.

She…wasn’t…wasn’t Finn’s daughter.

She wasn’t Finn’s daughter.

Kurt had been right, right about Quinn, about girls, they just broke your heart, broke your heart and your car and he’d known it, he’d been watching and waiting and here it was and Finn was going to be heartbroken, and-

“We can’t let the football team know,” Kurt said suddenly. The noise stopped as everyone turned towards him. “Her boyfriend’s on the team. He’s the quarterback. Mike, can you keep an eye on things there?”

Mike nodded rapidly.

“We’ve got to keep this from the Jazz Band too,” Kurt said. “He’s their drummer. Artie…?”

“Lips are zipped,” Artie said, raising his hands.

“You told Puck to keep his mouth shut, right?” Santana asked Mercedes.

“You bet I did,” she said. “I told him Quinn had made her choice clear, and he needed to butt the hell out.”

“Good,” Santana said. “…God, we’ve got to keep this from Berry, too. That girl does not have nearly as good a poker face as she thinks she does, and you know with Quinn’s luck that Jacob ben Isreal is gonna come sniffing around sooner or later.”

“And he always goes for Rachel,” Tina said with a shudder.

“Exactly,” Santana said.

“Guess Quinn needs this song more than any of us thought,” Artie said. That was as good a reminder to start rehearsing as any, and the discussion dropped.

On the drive to drop Mercedes off, afterwards, Kurt turned the radio to the pop station and blasted it. Singing along was a good way to not discuss…anything.

He didn’t want to associate himself with the bad news. That was it. That had to be it. Quinn had clearly demonstrated her ability to break Finn’s heart. Kurt…just had to wait, like he originally thought. It was inevitable. There was no point being the one to break the information and making Finn associate heartbreaking news with Kurt.

Quinn insisting her baby was Finn’s, not Puck’s, that didn’t…that didn’t remind him of calling Tina his girlfriend and trying out for the football team.

It didn’t.

~

Finn stares at the phone in his hand, locked in the bathroom. This was too much, this was way too scary, Mr. Fabray had the scariest fucking eyes, even when he was smiling, Finn couldn’t do this-

You’re not a fucking man, Finn, you’re just a chickenshit Lima Loser like the rest of us.

Finn tells Puck’s voice in his head to go fuck itself, and stands up. There’s a radio in the kitchen that’ll take CD’s. He can use that.

~

Susie Pepper looked kind of happy for once, Alicia Jones noted Monday morning. A moment later Rachel Berry emerged from the bathroom Pepper had also come from, looking thoughtful.

~

Kurt arrived at the choir room with Artie that afternoon, a few minutes after the band kids. From the drum-set, Finn waved Kurt over.

“You know how you said maybe if I sang my feelings to Quinn, she’d listen?” Finn began. “’Cause that’s what Glee club does, and if I just kept talking she’d keep shutting me down, but if I sang, she’d at least let me finish the song?”

“Did you pick a song?” Kurt asked, curious as to where this was going.

Finn nodded. “Yeah. It was perfect. But. Uh. My timing wasn’t.”

Kurt unconsciously tightened his grip on the strap of his satchel. “You didn’t. Not last night…”

Finn nodded again. “Um. She’s living with me now. They wouldn’t let her take her car. My mom dropped us off this morning before she went to work. But I was wondering if maybe you could add us to your route to school?”

Kurt nodded numbly. “Least I can do,” he said, voice barely above a whisper. Santana and Brittany came into the room loudly then, making Kurt jump, and he gave Finn a nod before walking over to the chairs, and waiting with the rest of New Directions for Artie to bring in Quinn.

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mzminola: knees-down view of a kid in white stockings and black shoes who is standing on tiptoe. (Default)
mzminola

January 2013

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