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While it wasn’t completely out of the ordinary for Blaine to get a phone call early in the morning, it definitely wasn’t common for it to happen around three in the morning. And for it to happen again, and again, and again to the point that he woke up with six missed calls – and a text message topping them on the lock screen of his phone with six words from his publicist – was concerning enough on its own. It could either mean something good or bad, but he was leaning toward the latter.

 

Call me when you wake up.

 

It was still early when he woke, and he wasn’t nearly ready to bother getting out of bed, but seeing all that on his phone was enough to jar him awake and swipe across his screen to return one of the many missed calls, all of which had come from his publicist as well.

 

“Blaine, good, I wanted to talk to you before you looked at anything.”

 

“Good morning to you too, Maria,” he replied quietly, his voice still rough from sleep, and he cleared his throat to try and get rid of it. Her words hadn’t done anything to calm the way his stomach had started to churn as soon as he’d seen her text, and he tried to steel himself for whatever it was, though he had no idea what it could be. “Before I looked at what, specifically?”

 

“Well, it’s nothing bad—”

 

“If it’s nothing bad then why did you call me that many times and want to talk to me so soon?”

 

“Okay,” Maria said, pausing for what Blaine considered far too long before she started talking again. “It’s not bad, it’s just a rumor that’s out there and gaining some traction and I wanted to let you know about it before you saw anything online because I wanted you to be prepared.”

 

“There are rumors all the time; I don’t pay attention to them.”

 

“It involves Kurt.”

 

That was enough to make Blaine stop midway through whatever he’d been about to say, the words flying from his mind quick as they’d come as he stared at the ceiling and tried to piece together what could possibly be floating around the rumor mill involving Kurt. He took a breath, closed his eyes, and exhaled before replying. “What is it?”

 

“See, this is why I wanted to let you know before you saw anything because I know you’re friends and I know things are fine between you but I also know how you two used to be and I didn’t want you getting caught off guard. There are some things going around saying that you two are together.”

 

Blaine found Maria’s choice of words interesting, but not because any of it was incorrect. Yes, he and Kurt were friends and yes, things were fine between them. Yes, they used to be engaged, which was what she’d alluded to, but she wasn’t the one who had brought about the end of that.

 

It had been his agent who had done that – well, both his agent and Kurt’s had said the same thing. Two young stars with careers about to blossom, it didn’t serve them to be engaged, it hindered them. Entering the spotlight unattached, available, desirable, that was how to start out on the scene and then go from there. Being together, being engaged, it would hold them both back. Their agents had said it, their friends had said it, and Blaine could still remember the exact dinner they’d been eating when

Rachel decided to let them know her stance on the subject – chicken parmesan, vegan for her.

 

You have to end the engagement, it’s what’s best for both of your careers and once you’re successful enough maybe you can reevaluate. You both want each other to succeed, after all. It’s not like you have to stop being friends!

 

Kurt had looked like he wanted to throw some of his normal chicken onto her plate, Blaine hadn’t known what to say, and Rachel had just gone back to eating as though she hadn’t suggested anything more out of the ordinary than saying she’d noticed they were almost out of coffee when she’d been in the kitchen and they should remember to pick some up next time they were at a store.

 

The thing about it was, no one had stopped going on about it. Even friends who weren’t in the industry seemed to think their opinions should be heard, and Blaine was almost certain Rachel was to blame for that. He’d gotten one too many calls from friends who had no other way of knowing than her, asking if it was true that he and Kurt were breaking up, and being told if it was good for their careers they should go for it because there was always the future. Career first, relationship second – because after all, hadn’t he and Kurt always supported each other and wanted the best for each other? So why not do whatever it took to make sure the other’s career would be successful? It had gotten to the point where his agent would tsk every time they saw him, knowing nothing had changed, and he knew Kurt’s had been doing the same. So something had to be done, and they’d had to bite the bullet.

 

And that had been five years prior.

 

“Thanks for the heads up, Maria. I’ll try not to pay attention to any of it.”

 

Blaine pressed the icon on his screen to end the call and slid his phone onto the nightstand by his pillow, rubbing his hand over his face and trying to prepare himself for whatever was floating around the rumor mill. He didn’t care about it, he merely wanted to be prepared, but none of that mattered once he let his hand drop down to the bed and turned his head on his pillow to be able to look to the other side of the bed, an easy smile turning up the corners of his mouth.

 

“What crazy rumors are there?”

 

Kurt’s voice was groggy and his words came out slightly mumbled, which Blaine was sure was partially due to how his face was buried in his pillow, but it wasn’t like it was something he wasn’t used to. It was one of his favorite things, right up there with the way the blanket was pulled up over Kurt’s shoulders  as though the room were cold or it was winter – which would have made more sense if they weren’t in California where winter was not nearly the deal it would have been back home in Ohio, or New York. It didn’t matter, because it meant that Blaine got to roll over and drag the edge of the blanket down and reveal soft skin he loved to kiss and a tattoo he never got tired of tracing over.

 

“Apparently we’re losing our touch,” Blaine murmured as he pressed soft kisses along the curve of Kurt’s shoulder, stopping once he got to the crook of his neck, nuzzling against it lightly. “Because the rumor is that we’re together.”

 

“Oh.” Kurt turned onto his side, facing Blaine and blinking sleepily as he gave him a wry grin. “Is that all?”

 

“Is that all?” Blaine asked, raising an eyebrow and watching as Kurt rolled over more to be able to reach where his phone was sitting on his nightstand, staring at the screen a few long moments before putting it back and shaking his head. “Kurt.”

 

“I have missed calls too but now I know what they’re about, I’m not going to bother calling back until after breakfast,” Kurt replied with a yawn, and Blaine thought he was so adorable in that second that getting out of bed to get breakfast might not happen for quite a while. “How did that happen?”

 

“Not sure, but it’ll just take a quick search to find out, I suppose.”

 

“What did you want to do about it?”

 

Blaine honestly wasn’t sure.

 

It wasn’t that they weren’t together, because they were. They were so together. All the nagging from their agents, their friends, it had been incessant and unprompted and there had only been one way to stop it – doing what everyone had been saying they should do. It’s just that their version of ending their engagement had gone a different route than what everyone else had meant. Rather than break up, they’d done the opposite and gotten married – a secret that had been just between them for five years.

 

Maybe their careers had done better without the visible attachment to each other, maybe they would have been fine anyway, but having the illusion of no strings had gotten their agents off their backs and their careers had boomed in the spotlight. There was so much careful planning with every movement, every moment, but it wasn’t as though they hadn’t known what they were getting into when they’d come up with the plan in the first place. They were actors, and they could be just as convincing in their public lives as they were on screen. Blaine didn’t care, because he had the most wonderful man in the world as his husband, and he knew that – so who cared if anyone else did?

 

They’d never figured out an exit strategy, was the problem. They had grown used to being in secret, enjoying their life together without anyone else knowing, and of course they’d maintained a friendship in public but they’d never figured out how to stop the truth from being a secret. No one knew, not even their families, because they hadn’t wanted to ask so much of them and they knew it was a horribly big secret to keep – that had been hard, not telling their parents. It had been a quiet, private moment at the courthouse, just them and a random clerical worker to serve as a witness, and it had been done. It had been a compromise, certainly, because Blaine knew how much Kurt had thought about their wedding, and he’d had his own elaborate plans for it as well, but they’d agreed it was the right way to go about things for the time being, and they could always have a giant, detailed, over the top vow renewal to serve as the lavish wedding they’d always wanted.

 

“Well,” Blaine started slowly, mulling over his thoughts and words before going on. “Why don’t we see exactly what’s out there before we start to deliberate. It wouldn’t be the first time there were rumors, but I’ve never had Maria call to tell me about them so I have to assume it’s more than the usual.”

 

“You make the coffee, I’ll get my laptop,” Kurt replied, shifting over to press a lingering kiss against his lips that Blaine would have been glad to have last much longer than it did, but then it was over and Kurt was moving off the bed, and all he could do was watch the wonderfully naked form of his husband as he walked over to the bathroom and let the door swing shut. Blaine laid there and listened to the sound of the water running in the sink for a few seconds before making himself get up and find some underwear to pull on before heading to the kitchen to get the coffee going, because he had a feeling they would need it.

 

It wasn’t their house – it was Kurt’s, but it might as well have been theirs together, just like Blaine’s was. Having successful careers meant it didn’t seem odd they lived in the same neighborhood, at least no more odd than the rest of their neighbors, who were people Blaine still had to pinch himself he was somehow counted among. That was something they would have to figure out, if they were to going to go public with their relationship – which house to keep. Blaine tried not to think about that as he stood watching the coffee strain down into the pot, not wanting to get ahead of himself when they didn’t even know what they were facing.

 

By the time Kurt came down with his laptop, pajama pants hanging loose around his hips in a way that always drove Blaine crazy, the coffee had been poured and the mugs were set at their usual spots on the island bar, enough room for a laptop between them. If there was one thing Blaine had avoided as much as possible as his life drifted more and more into the public eye, it was looking online at anything involving him – and he knew Kurt was the same. With the gossip mills running full force around the clock, and social media getting so all inclusive, it seemed like a rabbit hole he didn’t want to go down. If there was something worth him seeing, he was told about it from someone on his team – like Maria, like she had that morning.

 

“Where should we start?” Kurt asked as he slid onto the stool beside Blaine, nudging his laptop open and watching the screen turn on before glancing over to him. "Googling our names seems…”

 

“Simplistic?”

 

“Also self-centered, but I suppose when looking for information about oneself…”

 

“As good a place to start as any,” Blaine murmured, reaching to get to the keyboard and opening a browser to type in Kurt’s name. Only one name was necessary, he figured, and he still felt strange about doing his own – though he wasn’t sure it felt any less strange to be searching for his husband’s like that either, especially when Kurt was sitting right beside him, taking a sip of his coffee as he watched the screen load.

 

Despite the call from Maria, trying to prepare himself for whatever he was about to see, Blaine wasn’t sure there was anything he could have done to make himself ready for the screen flooding full of results blaring with Kurt’s name and his own, so many question marks, so many claims of proof, and so many articles from celebrity gossip and news sites that claimed to have proof of their connection beyond friendship. Maybe if he had been in the habit of occasionally looking himself up online, Blaine would have been more prepared to see his name so bold and repeated and underlined in a way that made it seem accusatory, but then again most of the headlines were accusing him of something – a something he was guilty of, though not quite as they were suggesting.

 

“Whoa.” The word fell from Kurt’s lips in an exhale, and Blaine could see him in his periphery – eyes fixed on the screen but his hands still around his coffee cup, the edge of it barely away from his mouth. “That’s… a lot.”

 

“I guess… it was only a matter of time, right?” Blaine glanced over to him and raised an eyebrow, earning a shrug in return as Kurt dropped one of his hands down to the tracking pad on the laptop, scrolling through the search results before going back to the top and clicking on one of the articles, the one with the earliest time stamp. “There was no way it was going to last forever, and no reason it had to.”

 

“Right, but our terms, not theirs,” Kurt said, setting his mug down as he leaned closer to the screen to read down the article. “That’s what I would have preferred.”

 

“It didn’t look like any of them had the whole truth figured out, at least not at first glance.”

 

“Right, let’s see exactly what we’re up against…”

 

Blaine’s gaze stayed fixed on the screen as Kurt moved the cursor over the text, scanning for something to find, something to direct them to the root of this sudden revelation from the public, and then he found it – a link to a tumblr that had apparently laid it all out well enough to catch the attention of some media.  Kurt clicked, and they both took long sips of coffee as they watched the page load in front of them, waiting for it to be done before scrolling down and seeing what had been said.

 

this is something that has been stuck in my head for a while now and I thought I was going crazy (and some of my friends told me I was too) but once I started putting it all in one place there was even more than I realized and there is only one possible conclusion

 

KURT HUMMEL AND BLAINE ANDERSON (KLAINE) ARE TOTALLY TOGETHER.

 

STICK WITH ME HERE BECAUSE I PROMISE THERE IS EVIDENCE.

 

both of them use the exact same wording when asked about relationships: “there is someone special but we prefer to keep our privacy”

 

EVERY TIME. SAME WORDS. BOTH OF THEM. don’t believe me? here’s every talk show and red carpet interview where either of them were asked about it so see for yourself:

Link

Link

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Link

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Link

 

this could just be a coincidence but I mean come on those exact words every time and then let’s not even get me started on the way they look at each other OH WAIT TOO LATE HERE WE GO because I know they’re friends but when was the last time you saw people who were ‘just friends’ look at each other like these two motherfuckers do??? HERE ARE SOME EXAMPLES FOR YOUR VIEWING PLEASURE, AND PLEASE NOTE HOW MANY ARE FROM EACH OTHER’S PREMIERES AND WORKS WHERE THE OTHER HAS JUST HAPPENED TO BE:

 

Picture

Picture

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Picture

 

now I know what you’re thinking – but this is all just some silliness that you could probably pull with anyone if you find the right pictures or gifs and of course they want their privacy WELL I WAS SAVING THE BEST PART FOR LAST SO HOLD ONTO YOUR HATS (AND I DO NOT MEAN TINFOIL ONES BECAUSE I AM SERIOUS AS A HEART ATTACK WHEN I SAY I BELIEVE THIS IS TRUE)

 

RINGS.

 

if you are a klainer like me or even if you are just a fan of one or the other you obviously know about the rings that they wear which have been explained away as someone that they had from their days in high school (how cute is it they went to school together anyway??!!) and those times were super important to them and they like the reminder of where they came from but the thing is that there’s just no way because those rings didn’t appear until they hit california ok

 

people might forget that they both started in new york which like why would you their work there was great too but the point is that those rings? never pictured on either hand in new york. NEVER. I have spent more than my fair share of time sifting through every picture I could find from any public appearance or candid that is available from them being in new york and those rings are not in a single one. and ok I can hear you all yelling at me that it might be a coincidence but are you seriously telling me it’s a coincidence that those two wear rings that are so similar and have the same lies to use whenever they’re asked about things?

 

 there is someone special but we prefer to keep our privacy. the ring is from high school and I wear it as a reminder of where I came from.

 

those rings match each other. here – have these zoomed in pictures of every angle I could find to show the patterns better. they are matching rings and yeah if you believe the high school angle then maybe that would explain it to you but the pattern has nothing to do with anything about dalton academy and so why would they match?

 

B E C A U S E T H E Y A R E S E C R E T L Y F U C K I N G E A C H O T H E R.

 

believe me if you want, don’t believe me if you want, but you cannot deny the EVIDENCE laid out in front of you.

 

same rings, same excuses, same NEIGHBORHOOD for fuck’s sake. not to mention that despite both having ‘someone special’ they have never been seen with anyone like that either at an event or candidly or when they’ve been papped.

 

together. they are together. KLAINE. ARE. TOGETHER.

 

you’re welcome.

 

By the time they got to the bottom of the post, a post that had been made the night before and already had over a hundred thousand notes, Blaine’s jaw had gone slack and he’d been reduced to simply staring as Kurt scrolled. It wasn’t as though any of it wasn’t true, he couldn’t deny it, but there had been so much put into all the evidence laid out that he didn’t know what to say. He tilted his head to look at Kurt and saw his husband wasn’t reacting much differently than he was, and he reached over to rest his hand on top of his, fingertips tracing across it before settling.

 

“I didn’t think anyone would no—”

 

We didn’t think anyone would notice,” Blaine corrected before Kurt finished, because they hadn’t.

 

They’d had excuses enough for most of it, as they’d planned from the beginning. Of course they were friends, of course they were close – they had gone to school together, been together, been engaged, none of that was secret. It would have been foolish to try and hide any of that as they made their way across the country to start their lives in California. That was why they went to each other’s events, had the occasional lunch together – all platonic from the outside, from anything anyone would see or potentially photograph – even why the way they looked at each other, as pointed out by the apparent detective on tumblr, was perhaps a bit more than normal friends might. They had history.

 

It was just that the history wasn’t relegated to the past, and they’d made their decision together and brought years of pretending and secrets upon themselves. They’d done it willingly, and with no plan of how to end, and that was what they had to deal with that morning, not even a full cup of coffee in each.

 

“We’d wanted rings,” Kurt said softly, looking down at his free hand, examining the piece of metal around his finger. “Just for us.”

 

“Right, and I don’t regret getting them,” Blaine replied, glancing at his own before turning his gaze to Kurt again.

 

It was the rings that everyone seemed to latch onto, based on what he’d seen of the articles as they’d scrolled by. Everything could be waved over easily enough, because of course friends and former fiancés would look at each other differently than others, and of course they could say they wanted privacy in their personal relationships and to keep them from the public eye, and two celebrities who had been through media training certainly would have been told roughly the same way to approach the non-answer of the relationship question, but the rings. All the pictures going along with the articles had been pictures of them, and then a close up of their hands, their rings.

 

They didn’t wear them on the ring fingers of their left hands – they were far from that stupid, and wouldn’t have lasted for five years of secrets if they were – or even on the same hand. Blaine wore his one his left middle finger and Kurt wore his on the ring finger of his right hand, perfectly innocent to the unknowing but perfectly perfect for them, because when they were alone it was those hands that most likely to hold each other and the rings would bump as a reminder of their existence, their meaning, and they would feel the warm metal of both of them pressing against their skin. There was a pattern on them, yes, but it didn’t line up if they were wearing them – only if they were stacked.

 

“Maybe we should have gotten something more generic for them instead of what we did,” Kurt began, his brow furrowing as he rubbed at the inside of his ring with his thumb. “Not with a design.”

 

“Let me see that,” Blaine said softly, lifting his hand from Kurt’s and holding it out expectantly, waiting for Kurt to take off his ring and give it to him. He slid off his own and set them on the counter, stacking them one on top of the other and twisting them so the lines would be perfect, making the outline of a piece from a puzzle. “There’s nothing generic about you, or me, or us. These were the rings we wanted, and we got them for us, and I love them just like I love you.”

 

“I know,” Kurt replied with a smile turning up the corners of his mouth, reaching over to slip his finger into both rings and bring them up from the counter so he could look at them more easily. “My missing puzzle piece.” He took Blaine’s hand to slide his ring back onto the proper finger and Blaine leaned across to press a kiss to the corner of his mouth, staying that way as Kurt’s lips moved to meet his own, a long, coffee flavored kiss lingering between them before either of them pulled back. “Besides, who cares what they say?”

 

“I just know we never talked about this,” Blaine murmured, reaching over to shut the laptop to get the glowing screen to stop trying to distract him from his favorite person and how close they were sitting. “How to stop it being secret and bring it out in the open. Believe me, I have no issues with anyone knowing that I am married to the amazing, talented, gorgeous, to die for Kurt Hummel. It’s just a matter of how, and no matter how, people are going to talk.”

 

“They don’t matter,” Kurt whispered, his forehead resting against Blaine’s as he brought his arms up to circle over his shoulders and around his neck. “Neither does what they say. They can’t touch us or what we have.”

 

By the time Blaine left the house, in his normal jogging clothes like he always did to give the illusion he’d been out for a morning run, though it was only part illusion as he did jog around before going home, they’d come up with at least a shell of a plan. Family first, team second, then friends – nondisclosure agreements where necessary. The beginning of the process might not have been on their terms, but they were determined for the rest of it to be. That was why all Blaine gave to the paparazzi lingering outside his house was his normal wave and hint of a smile, polite but brief, his earbuds staying in until he was well onto his property and out of range for questions they somehow expected to be answered. 

 

They were in it together and going to do it on their terms, that was all he knew for sure. The rest? All Blaine could do was hope.

 


 

Telling family had been hard, there was no denying that. It had been hard to make the decision to keep it from them in the first place, especially Burt. Blaine loved Burt Hummel as much as he loved his own parents, sometimes it felt like even more though he knew he had nothing against his parents – it was just that Burt seemed so full of love and support constantly. Maybe to someone on the outside it might not have seemed that way, but Blaine knew. He’d known since the first time he’d met him, save that unfortunate first meeting they both pretended didn’t happen, that meeting that had happened after too much drinking at Rachel Berry’s house and an impromptu and innocent sleepover.

 

The best way to tell them would have been face to face, that was a point Kurt and Blaine agreed on fully, but the sad reality was that wasn’t possible, at least not in the span of time they had in front of them. They’d taken a day to breathe, a day to let the story settle and see where it landed, to think over the plan they’d made and make sure they were both okay with it. At the end of it, they’d both still been in agreement over what to do, and that meant the first box to check on the list was talking to family in the best way they had at their disposal – face to face thanks to Skype.

 

It had been a surprise to their parents, but what had been a surprise to them had been the relief shown by Burt and the Andersons. In the conversation with Blaine’s parents, they’d been shocked but his mother had almost immediately let out a breath and a laugh and relaxed back into her seat with a sigh and a simple, “oh, well that’s just wonderful to hear, though it would have been nice to know sooner.”

 

Burt – well, Kurt had cried as soon as he’d started to tell him, and that had made Blaine tear up, and then Burt joined in and it had been quite the moment. It wasn’t so much the crying that got Blaine, but what had been said after, once everything had been laid out on the table and the truth was hanging in the air. He hadn’t ever wanted to lie to Burt, even more than he hadn’t wanted to lie to his parents, but he knew it was different with Burt and he had been worried of disappointing him through all of the lies and secrets and the fact that they’d been married five years without telling him. But Burt was Burt, and even in the face of all that, he made Blaine feel like he was being hugged in those strong arms in person despite the miles and states between them.

 

“You know it never did sit right with me the way things ended with you two – or seemed to end, I guess. One day I’m hearing about how you might start planning the wedding soon, then the next it was over and I’m being told not to worry, you’re both fine and you did what was best for the both of you. I suppose you did do that, what was best, and I wish I could’ve been part of it but I know if it was kept from me and everyone else there had to have been a damn good reason and I trust you enough to accept that.”

 

Speaking to their teams had been a different story, because included in them were the people who had told them to break off the engagement in the first place. Blaine didn’t care, just like he hadn’t before, but the difference then was that he had leverage on his side. He was successful, a darling with the media and a star on the screen, and while he was more prone to be humble to a fault and not use any of that as leverage or in an arrogant way, he did have more than a few thoughts when it came to looking back at how he had been told, how he and Kurt had both been told, to end a relationship they’d been so wholly devoted to for the sake of their potential careers.

 

Did their agents really want it put out to the public that their advisement to young, budding actors and talent was to dismantle their personal lives for the sake of success? It was hardly good publicity.

 

So sure, their agents had been less than excited to hear the news, but it seemed more so from a perspective of damage control than the actual lack of listening in the years past – though Blaine was sure that might have been different if they hadn’t had as much success as they did. Of course it would have been easy to say ‘I told you so’ if one or both of their careers had tanked, but they hadn’t. His conversation with his agent and the various members of his team had gone as smoothly as he might have hoped, and there were nondisclosure agreements signed all around just to add that extra assurance the full truth wouldn’t leak out before they wanted. A short phone call from Kurt after his meeting with his agent had confirmed things had gone just as well on his end, if not slightly rougher, but the end result had been the same.

 

And then there were their friends.

 

It was difficult to decide who should be told in person or before the truth came out publicly, because through the years they had made so many friends, but Blaine thought they’d approached the situation well. They’d sat down and written a list of people they felt should know from them, and who could keep their mouths shut for at least a day. That was why friends were last on the list – because they seemed the most likely to let it slip, even if they didn’t mean to, and the plan was for them to find out right before the truth was out.

 

The conversation got easier with each telling of it. Blaine got more and more used to saying “we’re married” with each time the words moved past his lips, but it wasn’t a phrase he thought he’d ever tire of saying. There had been far too many years where he hadn’t been able to admit it, and now that it was coming out in the open it made him want to shout it from the rooftops. They were married – he and Kurt were married, they were husbands, married, and soon the world would know. There was just one more box to check off the list before they were done, and it was by far the biggest box there was.

 

Telling the public.

 

That had been easy to figure out how to do, but that had been a lot due to timing. Blaine remembered laughing as they put together their list of steps, list of people to tell, because the only word he could think of was convenient. It was absurdly convenient that there would be so much attention and focus on their relationship, or the possibility of their relationship, right before the Academy Awards – for which they both had earned nominations, Blaine for his leading role in a biopic and Kurt for his supporting role in a dramatic box office smash that had taken the world by surprise.

 

There was a red carpet waiting for them, a red carpet where they were both invited, a ceremony where they were both nominated for the first time, and no reason at all not to go together.

 

 

It was the word still running through Blaine’s head as he had his hair fixed one last time on his way out of his house to get into the limo taking him to the Dolby Theatre – not just him, but Kurt, too. Kurt was already in the limo, looking devastatingly handsome in his tuxedo, and Blaine barely waited for the door to be shut behind him before he scooted over and brought his hand up to cup Kurt’s jaw, tilting his head to get that perfect angle when their lips met, savoring the warm press of Kurt’s lips against his as he breathed in his cologne. The car was at the end of his block before Blaine even thought about pulling away, and only managed to because he felt like he should say something.

 

“Are you ready?” The words came out more than a little breathless, partially from the kiss but also thanks to the anticipation and adrenaline coursing through him. It was a night he’d dreamed of for years and years, each part of it – the ceremony, but more importantly being able to tell the world the truth. Winning an Oscar would be nice, but standing on the red carpet proudly holding Kurt’s hand, that would be the best award he could ever win.

 

“Are you?” Kurt murmured, brushing a light kiss against the corner of Blaine’s mouth before leaning back against the seat and watching him with a relaxed sort of smile. “Because I am.”

 

“Absolutely,” Blaine replied with a soft chuckle, pressing back into the seat beside him and fishing his phone out of his pocket so he could swipe the camera on and take pictures of them as they made their way to the theatre.

 

It was the first time they’d done that, after all, and it needed to be commemorated. Sure, they’d gone to premieres for each other’s works but never together. Separate cars, separate houses, separate lives, but no more. It was an occasion that called for pictures – looking at the camera and smiling, smirking, winking, getting caught off guard and looking horrible but that wasn’t going to get deleted because it was still perfect, and kissing each other on the cheek, lips, temple, anywhere that could still be seen by the camera because why not? To say they were giddy would have been an understatement, and they both knew it wasn’t because of the awards – or at least not just the awards. The night was far bigger than that.

 

Despite how much they both said, and meant, they were ready, there was still that pause when the car pulled up to the theatre. Blaine could feel his heart pick up pace, his breath quicken, and also how Kurt sat up straighter beside him. There was a car in front of them, giving them a few more moments on their own in the privacy of their car. Blaine was grateful for it, for the chance to focus his thoughts after the distracting giddiness of the car ride up until then, when they’d been enjoying each other and not paying attention to what was waiting for them at the end of the road.

 

“Rings on?” Kurt asked, bringing his left hand up and wiggling his fingers with a gentle grin.

 

“Rings on,” Blaine said with a nod, biting the inside of his lip as he drew his ring out of the pocket of his tuxedo jacket.

 

They’d had the rings resized easily enough, sized so they could fit on the fingers they were meant to be on in the first place. It was going to take time getting used to how it felt, Blaine realized, as he slid it onto his ring finger and brought his thumb up to rub against it like he always did, but it was a finger over from what he’d grown used to over the years. He supposed it would be worse for Kurt to get used to, wearing it on the opposite hand. While he would miss feeling the press of their rings against each other while they held hands, Blaine knew he would like it even more to see the band on Kurt’s left ring finger.

 

“Let’s do this,” Blaine murmured, leaning over and pressing a lingering kiss to Kurt’s mouth, drawing in a deep breath as he pulled away and the door was opened for him, the light from outside streaming in almost as though it was preparing him for the flashes of the cameras that were imminent.

 

Screams had taken a while for him to get used to, when his career had first taken off – that rush of noise coming at him when he walked into an event or got out of a car at a premiere, and he was used to it for the most part, but there was so much more than he could claim to be used to when he stepped from the limo and straightened up, quickly surveying the area around and taking a step away to clear space for Kurt to get out after him. The screams and yelling for him had been one thing, but it was a whole other level when Kurt emerged from the limo, smoothing out the front of his jacket as he stood up straight and murmured a thank you to the attendant who closed the door for him.

 

“Here goes nothing,” Kurt said close to Blaine’s ear, bringing his hand to the inside of his arm and giving a squeeze to his wrist before taking a step away as they were directed toward the red carpet, ushered into the group of celebrities going down the line of photographers.

 

There was so much stopping and posing that Blaine thought he might burst, because that was all well and good but nerves were kicking in even more than he would have expected. It was the nerves of the night and the awards on top of the nerves of being there with Kurt and finally not having to pretend anymore, which he was sure would be relieving once it was over but for the time being it wasn’t, and Blaine was glad to be there and grateful for the nomination and opportunity but that didn’t change the fact that he was nervous.

 

“Blaine Anderson, come on up here!”

 

Shelby Ridge, the most popular host of the biggest entertainment network out there, pulled him over to an interview spot to answer a few questions before he disappeared into the theatre, and Blaine gave a glance over the crowd behind him before turning his attention to her, wanting to make sure Kurt hadn’t disappeared but not entirely concerned that he would because he was Kurt, and they both knew what the night was about. Besides, it wasn’t as though they hadn’t known the moments on the red carpet were coming – Blaine was a favorite of interviewers and Kurt wasn’t far behind on that list either.

 

“I see you went with a very classic look tonight, and I must say it looks wonderful on you.”

 

“Thank you, Shelby,” Blaine replied with a smile, letting his gaze wander to the camera before looking back to her. “Your dress is beautiful, I hope they let you inside after this so you can show it off some more before the night is done.”

 

“Well aren’t you sweet! Now, I know you’re nominated tonight and are hoping for a win, but there’s something I need to ask you about before we get to any of that.”

 

“Oh?” Blaine raised an eyebrow, feigning ignorance to knowing what she might be talking about. “What’s that?”

 

“We couldn’t help but notice you arrived with someone, and I was going to ask you to walk your fingers down the red carpet of our mani-cam, which meant I noticed your hand…”

 

“What exactly are you implying, Ms. Ridge?” Blaine gave her a teasing grin as he undid the button of his jacket, letting it hang looser around his waist and expose the vest he was wearing underneath, feeling more at ease with one less layer pulled tight around him.

 

“I know there have been rumors milling about regarding you and a specific someone for a while now, and there seems to be a ring on a specific important finger, that’s all,” Shelby replied with a dismissive wave of her hand, but Blaine knew it was anything but.

 

“Let’s settle this once and for all, then,” Blaine said, glancing over his shoulder and looking for that familiar swoop of hair he could recognize instantly. “Kurt? Would you mind joining me?”

 

It only took a few moments for Kurt to make his way up the stairs from where he’d been chatting with a fellow actor from his film, sliding in beside Blaine and raising an eyebrow in a way that would have seemed to suggest they were having a normal conversation as opposed to one televised to god knows how many people. His hands were slid into his pockets, a casual look that just happened to keep his ring out of view, a move that Blaine knew at least annoyed Shelby slightly because of how her gaze dropped to where she expected his hand to be, but she got nothing for her efforts. “Yes?”

 

“Shelby was asking about the rumors… you know, the ones about you and me.”

 

“Well we’ve always been very good friends,” Kurt began, offering her and the camera a sweet smile.

 

“Oh come now, you’re going to tell me the two of you aren’t actually dating?” Shelby pressed, raising an eyebrow in a way that seemed playful but Blaine was sure they all knew she was serious underneath it all. She loved a story, and if it was a story she wanted…

 

“No, we’re not dating,” Kurt replied, shaking his head. “I’m afraid not.”

 

“It’s much worse than that,” Blaine added, nipping the inside of his lip as he grinned. “We’re way past dating.”

 

“I knew it, you’re engaged!” Shelby preened, poking a well-manicured finger toward Blaine’s left hand.

 

“Again, worse than that,” Kurt went on, drawing his hands out of his pockets and sliding one arm through Blaine’s while bringing his other hand, his left hand, up to rest against Blaine’s bicep, the ring standing out against the stark black of his jacket. “Sad to say we’re boring, old married people.”

 

“Not so much with the old, I’d say, we’re still rather young,” Blaine corrected with a slight wrinkle of his nose, but even that couldn’t stop his smile. “I’d hesitate to say boring, either, but married… quite so.”

 

“Now, if you’ll excuse us,” Kurt said smoothly, not giving Shelby much chance to talk – though from the way she was staring at them with her mouth slightly agape, Blaine wasn’t sure there was much threat of that happening. “I think your next interview is here and we wouldn’t want to hold you up from them.”

 

Blaine offered her and the camera one last smile before moving down the steps with Kurt, their arms still linked together as they made their way through the crowd. With the photo line and interviews out of the way, and their bomb dropped, there was nothing left to do but enjoy the night together. True, their seats were at different tables because of being in different projects, but Blaine knew he got to go home with him at the end of the night and that was well enough for him.

 

If there was an acceptance speech or two that involved thanking a husband that the world hadn’t known existed until that moment, that would be icing on the cake. No matter what, Blaine knew that night was the beginning of a whole new part of their lives, where they could be together and open and not have to think about anything but each other and themselves – and that was the best of anything he could ever win in his life.