Blaine leans tiredly against the exposed brick wall of a Brooklyn theater company as he waits for Sebastian to drive by and take him home. It’s been a long night, to say the least, but he figures nothing is going to come easy if he really wants to keep working his way up the ladder. He moved to New York with one goal: to land a Broadway show, and while he’s only been here for a few years he has yet to make that happen. And it will happen, he knows it in the very stitchwork of his bones, but that doesn’t make waiting and putting in the time any easier.
He offers a small wave to some of his colleagues as they leave the building, walking to their own cars. A few of them ask if he needs a ride but he gently declines, assuring them he won’t be waiting too much longer.
For now, he has to settle with small roles and sometimes working behind the scenes. He loves building his knowledge and resumé of working in a theater but sometimes he wonders if that big break is ever going to happen.
Cooper tries to give him an example of how long he waited for B side horror films with all his ridiculous commercials in-between—and mostly all that does is make Blaine smile and dip his head, trying to keep laughing to himself. But he supposes he does have a point. His brother is happy, even with terribly plotted scary movies, so where is there room for him to judge?
Regardless of the long hours, Blaine is thankful he’s managed to move towards a small theater that’s not a black-box with only one setting performances. Not that he doesn’t think those are important, they are, being able to pull off a stellar show with just one setting to work off of takes craft and the ability to tell a good story. It’s just not for him—he thrives off of multi-settings and endless characters, costume changes, the plot feeling as if it physically moves through all the scene shifts. It’s addicting, something he fell in love with early on in his career and to say it’s spoiled him to the point where he knows what he wants is an understatement.
He’s just glad he’s with someone who understands.
Blaine tries not to regret too many things in his life, he’s under the firm belief that everything happens for a reason. He regrets breaking his mom’s favorite vase in the third grade because he threw a soccer ball at Cooper for making fun of his bowtie collection. He regrets getting back with Kurt a third time (because the first time felt like love at first sight and the second time tasted like guilt but the third was just wishful thinking, too much on his part). He regrets not going back to Dalton to finish out his high school years; he loves McKinley, still does, loves the friends he made there and is forever grateful he still talks to Sam and Jake…but Dalton made him feel like he never had to apologize for being himself.
One thing that he doesn’t regret is making amends with Sebastian.
It was a rocky start to say the least; most of the time he didn’t have the energy to build a friendship because he was too worried about his relationship with Kurt. His ex never approved of Blaine’s forgiving nature, didn’t think Sebastian deserved a second chance. Which was ironic, seeing as how all he did was give second, third and fourth chances to Kurt himself when their relationship refused to stick.
Sebastian was there for him when Kurt wasn’t, never once trying to weasel his way into a relationship or push boundaries where Blaine clearly had walls up. He was supportive and listened when he talked and encouraged him in ways that Kurt had a hard time doing because he couldn’t support Blaine’s dreams and his own at the same time. They were too similar and there was only enough spotlight for one of them.
While making Blaine feel wanted and good enough was a ploy of Sebastian’s at one point to get into his pants, it melted into something genuine and real the longer their friendship developed. Deciding to move to New York together while they both attended their respective colleges wasn’t a hard choice to make.
Neither was deciding they wanted to take their relationship to the next level.
Blaine shifts on his feet and adjusts the bag on his shoulder, pulling his jacket closer around him so he can zip it up against the cool air whipping around the corners of buildings. He still remembers that choice so clearly in his mind, even years after being together. One day he came home from an audition and he was nervous, for whatever reason, to tell Sebastian he got the part. Maybe it had something to do with not believing in himself or having to always deal with the kickback of telling Kurt about performances. His ex, even while smiling and trying to be happy for him, always had this look in his eyes—a swirling disappointment and jealousy that Blaine was making waves in the theater world when Kurt wasn’t.
He remembers that part of his high school experience like a slap to his face, an imprint that will never quite leave him—the expression Kurt gave him when he’d landed the part of Tony for West Side Story. He always expected Blaine to happy for him when something was going his way but could never quite get the reverse support.
And maybe that’s why he was so hesitant to tell Sebastian the very same thing.
“Is my cooking that bad or is something wrong?”
Blaine blinks, nearly dropping his fork as he looks up at his roommate. He registers the question after a few moments, Sebastian raising an eyebrow at him and prompting him to answer. He’s being ridiculous, he knows he’s being ridiculous…and yet.
There’s this swirling sense of dread in the lower half of his ribcage because what if he’s right? What if Sebastian doesn’t support him or…is jealous about his accomplishments? Or worse, what if he pretends he’s happy for him only for Blaine to see right through the emotion? Despite Sebastian being able to put up incredibly decent and solid walls between his true feelings and his facial expressions, their time together has given Blaine an advantage. He’s getting better at seeping through the cracks in his defenses, has been around when that mask he wears begins to slip from his face.
Blaine’s pretty sure he’ll be crushed if Sebastian doesn’t support him.
“I just…I uh,” He rubs the back of his neck, sitting up a little straighter.
The silence is pungent, filling the room and seeming to choke the words sitting right under his tongue. Despite Sebastian being a relatively impatient person, he waits, watching Blaine carefully as he finishes his dinner.
“Did you not get the part?” Sebastian guesses and Blaine’s face must pinch because the taller hums, misreading the expression, “Don’t let it get to you B, there will always be other auditions out there—”
“Igotit.” He says in a mouthful and Sebastian puts his fork down when Blaine takes in a deep breath and repeats himself, “I got the part.”
It’s a slow smile but something warm and genuine and suddenly Sebastian is standing, moving to touch Blaine’s shoulder, squeezing— “That’s amazing; that part was practically written for you. I know it’s in one of those black-box theaters that you can’t stand but everyone needs a steppingstone, you know? We should celebrate—I think we still have chocolate ice cream in the freezer.”
Blaine doesn’t process his reaction for a few moments, swallowing as Sebastian moves into their kitchen and begins digging around for the ice cream. When he follows him, he leans against the door frame for a few moments, watching his roommate put two bowls onto the island table, a tub of ice cream and chocolate syrup that’s almost empty.
The anticipation of a sugar rush only seems to add to his unwanted anxiety and he can’t help the question as it tumbles out of his mouth, “You’re happy for me?”
The taller pauses, setting a spoon down on the counter as he takes a long look at Blaine—most likely trying to figure out where that question is coming from without asking. And after a moment, it seems to click because the muscle in Sebastian’s jaw begins working the longer the silence stretches out between them
“Does this have anything to do with Kurt?”
Blaine looks away, drumming his fingers against his forearm, but the action alone is enough of an answer.
He hears Sebastian let out a long sigh before rounding the island counter to stand in front of him, reaching down for one of Blaine’s hands. Their palms rest together, almost fit too perfectly, and he watches as Sebastian draws his thumb over his knuckles in a soothing manner.
“I know I was never Kurt’s biggest fan or anything but the fact that you don’t even feel comfortable owning up to a success that’s yours to claim…” He shakes his head, a frustrated noise leaving his mouth that feels too familiar from a long time ago. “You are one of the most talented, hard working and genuine people I know. No one deserves this more than you.”
And maybe it’s a swift decision but an emotion he can’t name swells in his chest so quickly and so violently that he finds himself pushing up on his toes to kiss Sebastian’s lips. He pulls back for a moment but the taller leans down, the invitation all he needed to tug Blaine close as they kiss again.
He makes a soft noise against Sebastian’s mouth, needing to take a moment to breathe but they keep their foreheads pressed together, absorbing the feeling of their bodies so closely connected.
“I can think of how to celebrate another way,” Sebastian teases, kissing the corner of his mouth, “Forget the ice cream.”
Blaine smiles, shaking his head, nosing at Sebastian’s cheek. “Or…we can bring the ice cream with us.”
Sebastian pulls back, chewing on his lower lip with a devious glint in his eye— “As always, I like how you think, Anderson.”
Blaine doesn’t have many regrets to begin with but he loves the idea of working towards less and less of them as he pursues his career and relationship with Sebastian.
Speaking of; he waves him down as he steps out from leaning against the side of the theater building. He quickly moves across the parking lot, opening up the passenger door and letting out a long sigh as the heat from the car surrounds him.
“Sorry I’m late,” Sebastian says instantly, turning the heat up when Blaine rubs his hands together. “Briefing took longer than I thought and by the time I looked at my watch—”
“It’s okay,” Blaine sniffles, brushing the tip of his nose with the back of his wrist to warm it up, “I wasn’t waiting long.”
The taller hums, craning his neck so he can look out the windshield at the weather beginning to pelt rain onto the car. “It’s getting colder, which I didn’t expect.” He leans back against the seat, his one hand moving from the steering wheel to rub at Blaine’s knee. “I’d hate for you to catch a cold the week before your opening night.” He offers a small smile as they pause at a red light. “You’d never let me hear the end of it.”
A soft chuckle leaves Blaine’s lips, both of his hands pulling Sebastian’s in-between his. He brings it up to his lips, pressing a soft kiss to his fingertips, “I guess you’ll just have to give me a hot bath when we get home to make it up to me.”
Sebastian smirks, pressing on the gas when the light changes, “I think that can be arranged.”
Blaine lets out a long sigh as he relaxes back into the tub, only opening his eyes when he hears the door open and close. Their cat has managed to sneak in between Sebastian’s legs and skids on the tiled floor, landing right against the tub. This doesn’t stop her, however, from going after some of the bubbles that have floated to the ground like falling snow from the suds Blaine is surrounded in.
He offers a soft smile as Sebastian stretches over the tub to place a cup of green tea on a side table and then sits on the closed toilet seat next to him.
The taller makes a soft noise, leaning up to rest his elbows on his knees, “You warmer?”
Blaine nods, lifting his arm up and out of the water to reach for the cup of tea. He blows on it, letting the steam kiss his face before he carefully takes a sip. Honey and sugar, just the way he likes it. He licks his lips, putting the cup of tea back down before glancing over the edge of the tub at the sound of clattering. Their cat is literally throwing herself into playing with these bubbles, her feet slipping on the tile and towels and landing in awkward places against the furniture of their bathroom.
“Are you nervous about your part next week?” Sebastian asks, reaching his hand into the water to test the temperature. “Is it a musical or a play, I can’t remember.”
He draws his knees up to his chest so he can rest his chin on one of them—he doesn’t blame Sebastian for not being able to keep track, he’s been in a lot of small shows trying to work his way towards Broadway.
“Musical and no, I’m not.” Blaine smiles up at him, “Are you going to get in with me?”
Sebastian purses his lips, “Was that an invitation?”
“Well lets just put it this way, it wasn’t really a request.”
“Cheeky,” He tuts before standing, beginning to take his clothes off. Blaine watches every moment, his eyes appraising the long lines of Sebastian’s body, the many beauty marks that he’s kissed, the soft dimples in his skin—he really is one of the most beautiful people he’s ever seen.
He lets out a long breath as his boyfriend slides into the tub and at least it’s big enough for both of them to fit without limbs falling asleep or water lapping over the sides. Blaine reaches forward to drain the water a little bit as Sebastian slips in behind him, letting the bath re-fill with hotter water. He then grabs the lavender bubble bath from the table and squeezes in a penny sized amount.
Blaine leans back against Sebastian’s chest, his head resting against his shoulder. He turns his chin just a little so that his nose brushes the underside of the other’s jaw, breathing in the scent of cologne and skin. He allows his eyes to close for a few moments, Sebastian’s hands working up and down his sides and over his abdomen—sometimes he prefers times like this the best, touching that has everything to do with intimacy, not rushing towards anything more even though there’s a pleasant heat in his lower stomach.
“Do you like this part compared to others you’ve had?”
The question startles him a moment because he admits he was starting to drift off between the heat of the water and Sebastian’s body. He clears his throat before he shakes his head, “I like all my performances equally. They’re all a different part of me, if that makes sense.”
Sebastian nods, pressing a kiss to his shoulder, “Don’t you play the ghost of a babysitter in this?”
Blaine smiles, knowing where he’s going with this as he opens his eyes to look up at him, “Yeah, I just meant that each part I play offers a different challenge. You know?”
He kisses his nose before his forehead, “What flowers do you want on opening night?”
He leans up in the tub, just slightly so he can kiss the corner of his mouth. “Surprise me.”
Sebastian wraps his arms a little tighter around him, squeezing gently before his fingers trace shapes against his hip bone. He’s quiet for a few minutes but Blaine can tell he’s thinking about something without saying the words that are underneath his tongue. He takes his time and Blaine doesn’t press, allowing them to relax in the bath because sometimes it feels like they hardly have time to themselves.
“I remember I used to get so wound up before Warbler performances,” Sebastian admits, his hand floating to the surface of the water to chase islands of bubbles, “I dunno if it was nerves but it was definitely something that made my stomach drop into my knees.”
Blaine smiles, licking his lips, “I know exactly what you mean. I still get that way; excited, I guess? But also terrified at the same time.” He turns a little so he can see Sebastian’s face easier, “Do you get that way before a big case?”
There’s a soft scrunch that appears in-between Sebastian’s eyebrows, something moss green that’s resting in the color of his eyes. Blaine bites down on his lower lip, contemplative—he thinks he knows what emotion that is but he’s not sure. It’s gone quickly, almost as if it’s slipped under the water and disappeared.
Sebastian turns his gaze on him, leaning forward to nuzzle their noses in an eskimo kiss that makes Blaine smile, “No, it’s not the same feeling. I mean, there’s adrenaline and nerves but it’s not exactly about excitement. Moreso I’m just worried about doing my job correctly, there’s always eyes on you.”
Blaine nods softly and presses a kiss to the other’s cheekbone, leaning up when Sebastian reaches to drain the tub so they can start to dry off. He stands up, grabbing the towels off the sink and hands one to Sebastian after he wraps himself up in one. Stepping out of the tub, he dries his hair best that he can, their cat circling his legs and licking droplets of water from his ankles just because she can.
He wraps the towel around his waist, opening the bathroom door and pausing for a moment to look back at his boyfriend. “You okay?” He asks, not sure what prompts him to say it but there’s a tension he can’t describe or define settling like fog in the room.
It’s not exactly a…tension between them, or anything, Blaine senses that their relationship is fine. But Sebastian’s shoulders are tight like there’s a steel rod stretching across his bone and working down his spine. There’s something going on that he’s not vocalizing.
His boyfriend looks over his shoulder at him, making sure the tub is cleaned out of bubbles before he runs a hand through his messy hair. “Yeah, just tired. Got a long week of more briefings ahead.”
Blaine hums, already filing away this reaction for later—pancakes at some point for dinner might just be the thing to get Sebastian through. This upcoming week is going to be exhausting for the both of them for different reasons and he turns to walk into their bedroom to change into a pair of briefs and a white t-shirt to sleep in.
He can’t quite imagine having to put so much effort into briefings like Sebastian does, he’s a natural at being a lawyer, working up the corporate food chain the more court cases he wins. But there’s still something in his gaze that Blaine can’t put his foot on that he doesn’t like…
He just hopes its stress and nothing else.
Blaine can feel himself starting to get sick when he wakes up three days before curtain call. His throat is a little scratchy and he’s sneezing more than usual, feeling sluggish as he drags himself into getting a shower before he heads to the theater. He contemplates whether he should stay home for the day and rest up but he doesn’t want to tell his stage manager that he thinks he might be coming down with something so close to opening night. It’s a small part but he doesn’t want to be knocked out of performing it, not after he’s worked so hard.
He tries to convince himself that it’s allergies but he knows better when he stares at his pale expression after he dries himself off and pulls on comfortable clothes. He runs a hand through his curls and quickly makes his way to the kitchen, pouring himself a glass of orange juice.
“Don’t take this the wrong way,” Blaine turns to look at Sebastian when he comes into the room, tying his tie, “But you look terrible.”
He scrunches his nose, “Why am I dating you again?”
“Because I’m amazing in bed,” Sebastian leans in quickly, pecking Blaine on the cheek before he can bat him away with his hands. “Handsome, smart…feel free to stop me at any time.”
“I’m breaking up with you.” He mumbles as he picks up his orange juice, taking a long sip like he can somehow force Vitamin C into his system and stop this cold in its tracks.
Sebastian leans against the counter, the sleeves of his light blue button down rolled up to his elbows and he looks frustratingly good like that. “Do you think I could be my own lawyer in a divorce court?”
Blaine rolls his eyes, “We don’t need a divorce court if we’re breaking up.”
He purses his lips, pouring himself coffee, “Yeah, but I want to make sure you don’t steal half my shit. Also the cat’s mine.”
“No she’s not.” Why are they even having this conversation? Blaine feels dizzy, wanting nothing more than to lay down and have Sebastian make breakfast for him even though he knows he has to head to work. He has his own schedule to keep too—if he can.
“See, this is my point,” Sebastian smiles a little, voice teasing and warm as he takes a sip of his coffee. “You’re staying home, aren’t you?”
He lets out a slow breath, playing with the condensation rolling down his juice glass. “I can’t, I have to go to rehearsal.”
“You’re practically dead on your feet,” He sets his coffee cup down and closes the distance between them, Sebastian leaning forward to press a long kiss on his forehead that tells him he’s checking his temperature, “You’re not going to able to perform if you don’t take care of yourself now.”
Blaine sighs, irritation flooding his nerve endings to the point where it feels like his blood is boiling underneath his skin. “I know,” He pulls away, rubbing the bridge of his nose with his one hand before he turns his head to sneeze.
“Bless you,” Sebastian mutters, handing him a tissue while opening up a cabinet to grab bread to make toast.
“Though I’m sure the last thing you want to do is watch me in another performance anyways.” He has no idea why he says it or where his frustration is stemming from; partly because he’s tired and feels terrible but also because there was this look in Sebastian’s eyes the other night that he can’t place but it feels too similarly like Kurt to get it out of his head.
He throws the tissue away and washes his hands at the same time Sebastian puts his bread in the toaster and hits the button a little too hard, turning to look at Blaine as he says, “What is that supposed to mean?”
Blaine rubs his forehead, shaking his head because…why is he trying to pick a fight when a normal conversation could be had when he doesn’t feel like this. He leans against the counter and sniffles, “Nothing, I don’t know why I said that.”
But the thing about Sebastian is that it doesn’t take much to set him off and, without knowing it, Blaine’s struck a nerve. “Me neither, seeing as how all I do is support the nine hundred different performances you’re in. I even show up opening night when you’re a stagehand.”
Well now…that sounds like he’s being some sort of burden and he bristles at the tone of his voice. “I never said you had to do that. Being on stage is one thing but—”
“Oh don’t,” Sebastian interrupts, his words sharp like barbed wire. He can see a wall crash down between them, keeping them apart—what his boyfriend does best during a fight is keep him at arm’s length so he can’t tell how he’s actually feeling. It’s all a silver tongue and syllables designed to hurt him, “Because I’d never hear the end of it if I didn’t support you, all of a sudden I’d earn the name of Kurt fucking Hummel.”
“That’s not fair,” Blaine snaps, throwing words equally harsh back at him. “I would never say that but how am I supposed to know how you feel if you never tell me.”
“You know what’s not fair?” Sebastian asks, moving into the living room and grabbing his satchel. “You jumping down my throat.”
He leaves the apartment and slams the front door closed at the same time his toast pops from the toaster. Blaine pinches the bridge of his nose as the burnt smell creates a bigger headache pounding at his temples.
Blaine stays home for the next few days despite worrying that his stage manager will kick him from his part. He makes the right call because with extra sleep, three decent meals a day and vitamin C, he feels brand new by the time opening night comes around.
The only part that still feels off has nothing to do with catching a cold and has everything to do with the sub-zero temperature that’s his home life with Sebastian. His boyfriend does just about anything to avoid him, working longer hours and sleeping on the couch to the point where he feels like they’re living in separate apartments. Blaine knows that it’s on him to apologize but he…doesn’t even know how to say it. He’s sorry for causing an argument, for snapping, for accusing him of not wanting to support him when that’s all Sebastian has ever done.
He has no idea where his sour mood had come from that day in kitchen, the situation spiraling out of control until it was too late to fix it. He knows that something is going on with Sebastian and it involves the creative path Blaine has chosen but he doesn’t understand what. The fact that he had no tact in asking about it whittles down to lack of sleep, getting sick and old fears from his ex that have no business being in his current relationship with Sebastian.
Blaine just has to get through opening night first and then he’ll make things right.
Honestly, he doesn’t expect Sebastian to show up and wouldn’t be upset if he didn’t. When the curtain rises, he concentrates in not scanning the crowd, not wanting to think about it when he’s got a part to play and lines to sing. There’s nothing quite like the feeling he gets performing on stage, even as a secondary character. There are not many times where Blaine thinks he’s in the exact right place, at the exact right time, but when he’s on stage it transfers that feeling of completeness that he rarely finds anywhere else.
That sensation of being whole is also what he feels when he’s with Sebastian.
He sighs as he packs up his bag for the night, another stage member patting him on the back for a job well done as they head for the exit. Blaine smiles after them and declines the invitation for a drink, not in the mood for celebrating even though he might deserve it. He pulls on his coat and turns—
Only to see Sebastian make his way backstage with a bouquet of flowers he doesn’t know the name of but they’re a pretty, vibrant purple. He smiles softly, putting his bag over his shoulder as his boyfriend slowly approaches him and offers him the flowers.
“They’re catmints,” He shrugs his shoulder. “Since you had no flower preference, I figured this was the chance to get you something different.”
“You just like the name,” Blaine smiles, taking them and breathing in deep. “Thank you.”
Sebastian sticks his hands in his pockets, rocking back on his heels, “Woman in the flower shop told me that according to folklore, catmints can be used to capture someone’s heart.”
He chews on his lower lip, pulling the bouquet away from his face. “Is that what you’re trying to do?”
“Don’t think it’d hurt at this point,” Sebastian raises his eyebrows, as if pointedly using their relationship for an example.
Blaine nods his head towards a few other people who say goodbye to him, playing with a set of soft petals between his fingertips. The air is heavy around them but he doesn’t want to leave without addressing the weird tension, missing him incredibly too much to stand another moment of it.
“I didn’t think you’d be here tonight,” He admits.
Sebastian shakes his head, taking his one hand out to run through his hair. “I think we both knew I was going to be here, no matter what was said.”
He swallows down a wave of emotion, nodding as he takes a long look at the flowers in his hands. “I’m sorry, I don’t know why I got so wound up.”
The taller takes another step closer to him, holding up his hand gently to get him to stop talking. “I think we can easily blame Kurt for all of this,” He mentions evenly, an eye roll making Blaine smile just a little, “But you weren’t wrong that something has been bothering me, I just should have told you instead of letting you assume it was about your performances.”
Sebastian sighs and reaches for his bag, carrying it for him as they walk out of the theater and into the parking lot towards their car. Blaine lets the silence stretch between them, giving him as much time as he needs to try and form the words he wants to say. This isn’t something he’s always comfortable with, letting Blaine in, letting him see him completely—without the wall and without the mask.
“I like being a lawyer,” He shrugs his one shoulder, “I’m good at it just like my father is. Paycheck really doesn’t suck either. But sometimes…I miss the feeling of being able to perform. Of getting on a stage like you do and enjoying every moment of what that’s like. Sometimes I just wonder if I should have done something creative like you.”
Blaine watches Sebastian put his bag in the back seat before he leans up and presses a kiss to his lips. The taller’s arms easily loop around his waist, keeping him close and Blaine takes advantage of their proximity to place soft brushes of his lips against his cheekbone, the corner of his mouth and jawline.
“Sebastian, you can still be creative and keep your job as a lawyer. You don’t have to sacrifice one for the other,” He cups his cheek, offering a gentle smile. “There are plenty of small performances out there that would be lucky to have your moves and your voice.”
Sebastian hums, squeezing him around his waist. He leans in and kisses him, just because he can, his hand working into Blaine’s loose curls. He keeps them pressed together long after the kiss ends, the frigid air in the parking lot having no effect on the heat between their bodies.
“And if you decide to pursue it,” Blaine says, running his thumb over his jawline. “Then you’ll have my unwavering love and support.”
He smirks, leaning down to cup his ass a little possessively before pulling away so he can walk around to the driver’s side. “That’s real good to know, Anderson. You can fully ‘love and support’ me as soon as we get home.” And winks before they get into the car.