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I Can Be Your Someone Else

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The bar was spinning. There was no other explanation, right? Or maybe it was an earthquake. That was the only other option.

Sebastian groaned, resting his head against his hands as he tried to remember how many drinks he’d had. There had been a guy. At least six inches shorter than Sebastian, black straight which was unfortunate hair, but nice brown eyes. Not as nice as they could be but not bad. Sebastian had sat with him for… a while, he couldn’t think of the time. He had no idea what time it was now or when he’d gotten to the bar.

They’d had shots together. They’d flirted, leaned in close, smiled in that way that people who wanted to go home together looked. But Sebastian had been in the bar for quite a while and was already on his way to being drunk. In the time it took for their conversation to reach what could be a fun conclusion to his night, the other guy was looking at Sebastian with disgust.

It was only then that Sebastian realized he’d been talking about Blaine. God damn it. That was why Sebastian tried to avoid men who looked like Blaine. Because it inevitably made him think of Blaine, made him talk about Blaine, made him melancholy over Blaine.

The bartender raised her eyebrows at him. “You good?” she asked, shoving a glass of water at him.

“I…” But Sebastian trailed off, unsure what there even was to say. Was he good? He wasn’t about to vomit on her bar top or anything. At least, he didn’t think he was. He was normally pretty good about holding his alcohol but he’d had the day off. And that was right, he’d come in the evening, met a few of his coworkers for beers and pool, and then continued to sit and drink once they’d left. It had to be getting late if he was judging his watch right.

He might not be.

“I’m going to close your tab. Do you want me to call you a cab?”

Sebastian shook his head and the bartender gave him a look before walking away to run his card. He knew he really needed to go home and he sighed, rubbing his eyes. He didn’t want to. Going home, back to their apartment that they’d shared for nearly two years before Sebastian had fucked it all up. Just the way he’d always known he would.

Sebastian sighed as the bartender slid a receipt and a pen his way and he put his card back into his wallet. He squinted, making sure he was leaving a good tip before signing his name. Then he pulled out his phone, preparing to open the Uber app.

Except he could always call Blaine. It wasn’t like he normally did. It could just be a mistake. He’d call, Blaine would ignore him, and Sebastian would just listen to his voicemail message. It would make him feel completely pathetic but he was drunk enough not to really care.

Sebastian glanced at his receipt again to make sure he’d signed it, checked his wallet, and then pulled up his contact list. He hesitated when he clicked on Blaine’s name because he hadn’t changed his contact picture since they broke up. It was still the two of them at their graduation, Blaine’s hands on Sebastian’s chest as they looked adoringly at each other. Sebastian felt his heart twist.

After clicking the call button, taking several tries since he kept hitting the wrong button, Sebastian closed his eyes, telling himself he’d just listen to the voicemail and then he’d go home and go back to his life.

That had always been the problem, hadn’t it? Sebastian had never been able to expand his life, let Blaine in. Sebastian had tried to pretend that Blaine wasn’t the most important part of his life, the most important anything in his life.

“Hello?”

Sebastian tensed, his eyes flying open because he hadn’t expected Blaine to actually answer. “Blaine?”

A quiet breath on the other end made Sebastian’s heart stop. “Why do you sound surprised? You called me.”

“I didn’t expect you to actually answer,” Sebastian admitted, still trying to figure out why Blaine had answered at… he’d check the time but his eyes were blurring too much.

“Are you drunk?”

Sebastian considered lying. He probably should. But god, he’d lied to Blaine so much when they were together. “Yes.”

“Oh,” Blaine said and there was an emotion in his voice that Sebastian wasn’t sure he could determine. He must be too drunk because Blaine sounded hurt. “What are you calling me for, Sebastian?”

What was he calling him for? Sebastian probably shouldn’t tell him but the words were out of his mouth, an automatic answer, before he could consider it.

“I wanted to hear your voice.”

Blaine hesitated. “Sebastian… Where are you?”

“At the bar. Bartender says I need to get a ride,” Sebastian said, wondering if Blaine was paying attention to what he’d been saying. He’d already admitted he was drunk. “Where are you? Are you in bed?”

Blaine laughed and Sebastian imagined he could picture Blaine rolling his eyes. God, he wished he could see Blaine right now.

“I wish I could see you right now.”

Shit. Sebastian pulled the phone away to look at, seeing if maybe he’d disconnected the call before speaking but no such luck. He put the phone back to his ear quickly when he realized Blaine was talking.

“-such an asshole. What bar are you at?”

Sebastian tried to remember, having to look at his text messages with his coworker earlier before telling Blaine.

“Stay there,” Blaine told him, sounding more annoyed than Sebastian cared for.

“Blaine…” Sebastian murmured, unsure what he would even say. But he abruptly realized that Blaine had ended the call. That was annoying. Blaine didn’t tend to hang up on him often but then… they’d only broken up once before and that had been when they were still Dalton students together. They’d still had to see each other every day and it had been only too easy to win him back by doing the bare minimum. Sebastian didn’t know how Blaine handled him when they were broken up.

Blaine always was too good for him.

But then, Sebastian had a feeling Blaine was too good for anybody.

Sebastian was distracted as he pulled up his Uber app before realizing Blaine had told him to stay there. Well, he wasn’t going anywhere. Why would Blaine tell him to stay there, though? There was no way Blaine was going to tear himself out of bed at- Sebastian squinted until he could actually make out the time- 1:39 in the morning just to come down to the bar that Sebastian was at.

There was no way he was that mad, right? Except maybe Blaine was coming to yell at him. It didn’t necessarily sound like something Blaine would do but maybe Sebastian didn’t know him anymore.

Six months was a long time. Too long.

The longest time they’d spent apart since they’d met in their junior year. Honestly, the only real time they’d spent apart since then.

Sebastian swallowed hard, resting his head in his hands again. He was interrupted as the bartender tapped his shoulder.

“Don’t fall asleep on my bar,” she told him, looking him up and down and frowning. “Is your ride almost here?”

Was his ride almost here? Did he have a ride coming? Sebastian pulled up his phone, trying to see if he’d called an Uber. The last time he’d ordered an Uber from the bar, they’d tried to put some outrageous cleaning fee on. As if he was just some drunk who had no idea what he was doing. Sebastian wasn’t a sloppy drunk.

“Yeah,” Sebastian said, thinking maybe he’d call Blaine instead. Except, oh, he’d already called Blaine, hadn’t he? And Blaine told him to stay there. The least he could do was listen.

The bartender didn’t look like she believed him but she walked away again.

Sebastian pulled his phone up and then grabbed the glass of water, downing half of it. He was starting to feel nauseous and he was really interested in a bed right about then. His own bed preferably since he’d messed up any chance of going home with the attractive guy who was interested. It was fine.

Sebastian wasn’t sure how long he sat. The bartender filled his water once and then he just set it against his forehead, closing his eyes again.

He was interrupted by a loud sigh from the bartender and he forced his eyes open. “Look, if your ride doesn’t get here soon-”

“I’m his ride.”

Sebastian turned fast enough that he wobbled, Blaine’s hands darting out to catch him on the stool. He blinked once, twice, trying to force his mouth to open and say anything but he couldn’t manage anything. Blaine’s lips twitched and Sebastian recognized annoyance and amusement in equal doses as Blaine took the glass of water from him and set it on the bar.

“Did he pay his tab?” Blaine asked the bartender, receiving a short nod in return. He shoved his hands into his pants pockets and looked at Sebastian. “First time you call me in six months and it’s because you’re drunk.”

Sebastian tilted his head narrowing his eyes slightly because that wasn’t everything. “I wanted to see you,” Sebastian reminded him.

Blaine’s eyes lowered and he sighed quietly. It reminded Sebastian so much of the years they’d spent dating that he had to smile. “I know. You said that,” Blaine said, his voice just loud enough to be heard over the music playing in the background.

“Want a drink?” Sebastian asked, not knowing what else there was to say. He’d never been the one who was good at talking.

Blaine laughed. “I’m pretty sure you’ve been cut off,” he said, looking pointedly at Sebastian’s half-full cup of water.

That actually looked pretty good. Sebastian grabbed the water, downing the rest of it and then turning back to his ex.

“Did you come to yell at me?”

Blaine’s lips twitched and he shook his head. “No. I probably should for waking me up but… I thought you needed a ride home.”

Sebastian stared at him and he was trying to determine what Blaine could actually possibly be saying. Words were complicated right now and Sebastian was sure he had misunderstood. “I was going to get an Uber.”

“Well, I can go if you want.”

“No!” Sebastian said quickly, too fast as he leaned forward and Blaine rested his hands on Sebastian’s shoulders again. “Don’t. I want- Yeah, I don’t want to get an Uber.”

As slowly as possible, Blaine took his hands away, making sure Sebastian was stable. Or at least, wasn’t going to fall off his stool. Because Sebastian knew there was no way he was stable. Not even close.

Blaine touched his arm gently when Sebastian stood up on his feet, swaying a bit before standing straight. “Are you going to throw up in my car?”

Sebastian considered the question. “Possibly,” he admitted.

“Great,” Blaine muttered, wrapping an arm around Sebastian’s waist as the two headed out of the bar. Sebastian tried to hold his own weight for only a moment before he gave up and leaned against Blaine.

It was only with Blaine’s help that he managed to get into the passenger seat of Blaine’s car with the seatbelt on. He wrinkled his nose as Blaine walked around the front to the driver’s side.

“What the fuck?” Sebastian looked around, grabbing the air freshener off Blaine’s mirror and pulling it to his nose. And almost made himself throw up. He opened the door, half stepping out with the seatbelt still on to throw it away before getting back. He closed his eyes as Blaine did on the other side of the car.

“Are you okay?” Blaine asked, turning towards him and half reaching out before withdrawing his hand quickly to turn on the car.

As if he had remembered Sebastian wasn’t his anymore. Sebastian closed his eyes, resting his forehead against the window and thinking about how many times Blaine had come to pick him up when he was drunk before. Before they’d moved in together, when they were still casually dating but before Sebastian had really known just how much he wanted to commit to the other man.

Before Sebastian had fallen so completely in love, had realized his life was going to be changing forever. Before he’d realized just how much Blaine deserved and it wasn’t him.

“Sebastian?”

“Hmm?” Sebastian asked, twisting his head on the window so he could feel the cool glass but still face Blaine.

“Never mind,” Blaine said with a shrug. “Do you still live in our old apartment?”

“We still had a lease, didn’t we?” Sebastian asked, knowing the harsh words weren’t necessarily fair. And honestly, he wasn’t really angry over the question. The vibration of the car was making his stomach twist and he was really regretting how much he’d had to drink. He couldn’t remember the last time he’d drank so much and it showed.

Sebastian shook his head, closing his eyes and trying to steady himself. He rolled the window all the way down and rested his forehead against the door as he breathed in the cold air.

Blaine turned the heater on because he was perpetually cold. For a moment, Sebastian was tempted to apologize but he figured it was better he didn’t open his mouth. Blaine felt into silence and Sebastian felt himself drifting.

It could’ve been minutes or hours or days before Blaine finally nudged him gently.

“Lift up your head. I’m rolling up the window and then I’ll come around to help you out,” Blaine told him.

Sebastian very reluctantly lifted his head but only far enough to rest it against the headrest. He just wanted to be in a bed. In a bed with Blaine sounded nice. It was good that Blaine had come to pick him up.

“C’mon, up,” Blaine told him as he helped him out of the car. His hold on Sebastian was confident, firm as he closed the car door and led him up to their apartment.

“You’re so short,” Sebastian murmured, trying not to lean too heavily on Blaine and knowing he wasn’t really succeeding. The scene was too familiar and he could recall plenty of times they’d come home together like this. Although, normally Blaine wasn’t quite as sober as he was now.

“Don’t think I won’t drop you,” Blaine warned him and Sebastian laughed, pressing a kiss to Blaine’s curls. He smelled so good and Sebastian was hit with such a wave of want, love, affection. He loved this man, he knew. More than anything.

They entered the apartment and Blaine locked the door behind them before helping Sebastian out of his jacket.

“Blaine,” Sebastian whispered because he had to say something, remind him of something. Sebastian lifted up his hands to cup Blaine’s cold cheeks, looking at him. Something was wrong with this image. Bitterness was twisting his insides and Sebastian just wanted to hold him.

But Blaine shook his head, looking up at him with sad eyes. Sebastian had to fix it. “Don’t,” Blaine said, sounding startlingly close to tears.

Sebastian opened his mouth, preparing to say something, to comfort him, to pull him close. “Shit,” Sebastian muttered, heading instead for the bathroom on stumbling feet.

Blaine followed a little slower, bringing Sebastian a glass of water as Sebastian draped himself over the toilet. “I haven’t seen you this sick since high school,” Blaine murmured as he sat on the tub and ran his fingers tentatively through Sebastian’s hair. “How much did you drink?”

“A lot,” Sebastian muttered into the toilet bowl, sure Blaine wasn’t actually asking him to do something like count right now. He was so drunk that even throwing up hadn’t helped as much as it might have. “I think I’m just going to sleep here. I’m fine.”

Blaine laughed and Sebastian lifted his head to narrow his eyes at him, annoyed. “You’ll be complaining about your back aching in less than an hour, I guarantee.”

“Probably,” Sebastian agreed, lifting himself up to sit against the wall, taking the cup of water Blaine handed him with a ‘thank you.’

The other man watched him take a few drinks before he stood up. “Alright, come on. Let’s get you into bed.”

Sebastian could only nod, letting Blaine practically manhandle him into the bedroom. They slipped out of their shoes and Blaine helped him pull his shirt and then his jeans off, specifically avoiding looking in Sebastian’s eyes.

“If you wanted me naked, all you had to do was ask,” Sebastian slurred, standing in just his underwear and holding onto Blaine for balance since the room was sideways.

Scoffing, Blaine pat Sebastian’s cheek. “You’re the one who called me, dear,” Blaine responded sarcastically, looking over at the bed.

Sebastian followed his gaze and tried to see what Blaine was seeing. It was exactly as Blaine had left it. The other man had come a week after their last argument, clearing out the apartment when he’d known Sebastian would be at work. He’d left the picture of them and a book that he was halfway through but constantly said he didn’t like on the nightstand.

They were both still there.

“Come on,” Blaine finally said, coercing Sebastian towards the side of the bed that Sebastian had slept on since they’d moved in. “I’ll get you some Ibuprofen and water for when you wake up and something if you need to be sick.”

He laid down on the bed, grabbing Blaine’s wrist gently when Blaine tried to pull away. “Why’d you come to pick me up?”

“You’re not even going to remember this in the morning,” Blaine said, looking down at Sebastian’s hand on him but making no move to pull away. Sebastian had a feeling that was probably true but he stayed silent, wanting Blaine to answer him. Blaine sighed quietly, gently extricating himself from Sebastian’s hand so he could push Sebastian’s hair off his forehead. “I’m going to go get you water.”

Sebastian propped his pillows up so he was facing the door, not wanting to fall asleep just yet. Blaine came in only a few minutes later, putting the items on the nightstand and avoiding Sebastian’s gaze. “Don’t go.”

Blaine drew in a sharp breath, staring at Sebastian’s reading glasses that were sitting next to the bottle of Ibuprofen Blaine had brought in. “I don’t live here anymore.”

“You could,” Sebastian said and Blaine turned to look at him, eyes angry and Sebastian had no idea why. “You could stay forever.”

“You’re drunk, Sebastian. You can not actually be saying that to me right now,” Blaine snapped but he didn’t sound as angry as he did upset. It made Sebastian ache and he wanted so badly to reach out but he was way too dizzy.

Although he could see that Blaine was angry, Sebastian couldn’t stop. Not when Blaine was so close. “I never should’ve let you go that day.”

“But you did. And you didn’t even call me,” Blaine said, his voice shaking and Sebastian wanted to reach out for him.

Blaine took a physical step back so Sebastian shook his head, focusing on breathing and the conversation. It was difficult to do both.

“I thought you’d come back.”

Blaine looked up at the ceiling and Sebastian had a feeling he was trying not to cry. “Because I always did before, right? Because you always told me to stand up for myself except to you, right?”

That was a low blow and Sebastian felt it like it was physical. “You-” They had been together for so long. Had Blaine really felt that way? “For years-” Had Sebastian really made Blaine feel like he shouldn’t call Sebastian out on his shit? It had never seemed like Blaine had a problem with it before. “I didn’t want you to feel that way.” It wasn’t enough but Sebastian couldn’t get his mouth to work right.

Blaine seemed to realize how much Sebastian was struggling so he sighed, deflating. “Arguing with you right now is pointless, isn’t it?” Blaine said, shaking his head and hesitating for a moment. “I can’t just stay.”

“Yes, you can. I’m drunk. What kind of person would you be if you just left? I thought you were responsible,” Sebastian said with fake concern, shaking his head as Blaine smiled, amused, at him. Then he regretted shaking his head when the room spun again.

Looking around the room, as if it might hold some answers, Blaine sighed. “Sebastian…”

Sebastian made to shake his head then remembered he didn’t want to do that. “Come on. The bed is huge. You always complained there was too much space, that I wouldn’t cuddle you in the middle of the night. Stay.”

“Fine,” Blaine said and Sebastian smiled, pulling the pillows down so he could recline fully. He trusted that Blaine wouldn’t leave now that he said he was going to stay. “But I don’t want you to touch me.”

When Blaine came back, dressed in Sebastian’s pajama pants, Sebastian stayed on his side of the bed. He wanted so badly to reach out for Blaine but he wasn’t going to push his luck. That wouldn’t be fair. Instead, he tried to keep the world from spinning too much and relax.

“If you keep it appropriate, you can touch me,” Blaine whispered after a few moments.

Blaine didn’t tense when Sebastian touched his side so Sebastian let his arm loop around his waist, his chest pressing to Blaine’s back. And since Blaine was completely relaxed, Sebastian closed his eyes, making himself comfortable.

Blaine had always known that as much as Sebastian complained, he always wanted them to be close.

***

Sebastian woke up with an awful headache and he groaned, reaching out onto the nightstand for his phone to check the time. Feeling the pill bottle, Sebastian opened his eyes.

Blaine.

Sebastian rolled over but the other side of the bed was empty, covers pulled up and smoothed as if Blaine hadn’t wanted to leave a clue of him being there. Sebastian closed his eyes tight for a moment against the explosion of emotions before taking the Ibuprofen with the water.

Honestly, all he wanted was to go back to sleep but he knew getting up and getting the blood pumping before taking a nap would help the hangover. He sighed as he went to the bathroom then came out to the kitchen… and froze when he saw Blaine sitting at the dining room table, a cup of coffee in his hand.

“You’re still here,” Sebastian said and Blaine nodded but didn’t look up at him. “I thought I might have imagined you. I didn’t think you’d stay.”

Blaine pressed his lips together as Sebastian made himself a cup of coffee and came to sit down across from him. “You asked me to,” Blaine said, his tone brittle, too high. “I didn’t want you to choke in the middle of the night or anything.”

Sebastian nodded and he felt his heart start pounding when Blaine finally looked up and their eyes met. Sebastian had so much he wanted to say, so much he’d thought about ever since they’d broken up, but one was most important. “You didn’t answer why you picked me up last night.”

“I can’t believe you’d remember whether or not I did.”

Sebastian shook his head, taking a sip of his coffee. “No. I remember. Most of the night is fuzzy but I remember that. So… why? Old times sake?”

Blaine sighed, sliding his thumb along the rim of the mug as he seemed to be trying to avoid the question. Sebastian had the overwhelming urge to reach out, wanting to comfort Blaine but he needed to know how first. “Why’d you call me?”

That was fair, Sebastian supposed. His first instinct was to deny having feelings, the way he’d done with Blaine the majority of the time. The second was to lash out, to get angry. But honestly, Sebastian just felt tired. He was tired of not letting Blaine see how much he loved him.

Besides, that’s how he lost him before. Sebastian might not be the best when it came to emotions and relationships but he wasn’t stupid.

“I was drinking there and I met this guy. He was around your height, black hair, not curly but… Brown eyes. He reminded me of you,” Sebastian said, looking at Blaine and swallowing hard. The words wanted to get stuck in his throat and he had to force them out. It was only looking in Blaine’s eyes that made it easier. “I couldn’t stop thinking of you and I wanted to see you. I thought I’d call and you’d ignore the call but… I just wanted to hear your voice.”

Blaine sighed. He’d always had an easier time expressing himself than Sebastian had. It was always him that was professing his love, trying to talk about his feelings, trying to get Sebastian to talk about his. Sebastian had never done that well.

“I… I didn’t want you to think that you shouldn’t stand up for yourself in our relationship. But then, I suppose, I shouldn’t have made you feel like you had to,” Sebastian said quietly when Blaine didn’t say anything. It was honest, in a way Sebastian so often wasn’t, and he hoped Blaine could see it. He glanced down when Blaine picked up his mug with shaking hands, taking a drink as if to distract himself.

“I didn’t feel like that all the time, Sebastian,” Blaine said, finally looking up at Sebastian, his eyes sad. “I didn’t think it was just going to end. I thought you’d call me. But then I remembered you said-”

“I remember what I said,” Sebastian interrupted, not wanting to hear Blaine say it. As if he would ever forget what he’d said to Blaine that day.

They’d been fighting a lot in the months before they’d broken up. They were both still in college, taking classes, doing homework, working part-time jobs, and trying to sleep in between everything. Sebastian had been terrified, thinking of their future together. Most of the friends he was making were single, going out every night, sleeping around and partying.

And Sebastian had been coming home to Blaine every night, spending holidays with each other’s families, and talking about maybe getting married in the upcoming years. Sebastian had wanted it but he’d hated admitting he did. Blaine was so good, talking about getting a house once they were graduated, kids eventually.

It had terrified Sebastian. How could he marry Blaine, have kids with him, when he felt so off? When he still had a hard time admitting how much he loved Blaine for more than just his looks? Sebastian tried so hard, woke up early to make him coffee, gave him massages after a long day, bought his favorite food when he knew Blaine was out. But it wasn’t enough. Not when Blaine deserved more than somebody whose first instinct when confronted with something serious was to hide behind an innuendo or a sarcastic comment.

The worst part was that Blaine was so much better than he was at relationships. He cared for Sebastian in an endearing way. While Sebastian had to think of what he was doing, it was natural for Blaine to just include him. He was always reaching out, touching Sebastian, telling him he loved him.

Sebastian knew Blaine wanted more. How could he not? It had made him mean because that’s the kind of person Sebastian was. It had made him press and press on Blaine’s insecurities until Blaine got angry back.

Hurting Blaine was easier when Blaine was angry. What an awful excuse that was but it was true. It was easy for Sebastian to throw out hurtful words, implying awful things.

“You said we were only together because it was convenient. And I know you didn’t mean it,” Blaine said before Sebastian could try to defend himself. “But then you just… let me go and I began to think maybe you did. I came to pick up my things and you still… still didn’t call me. I didn’t even get an apartment because I thought you’d get your act together. I’ve been staying in my coworker’s spare room for months. And he doesn’t mind the extra rent but I still just kept hoping you’d call.”

Sebastian looked down at his own coffee cup, feeling like the worst person in the world. “I…” But how could he try to defend himself? The truth was, Blaine knew him. And Blaine knew he hadn’t meant the things he’d said. “I thought you’d come back and that was when I’d grovel for your forgiveness.”

“Did you even love me?” Blaine asked and Sebastian’s heart stopped.

He wasn’t even sure how to answer it because the idea of Blaine doubting that… “Of course, I loved you. Jesus, Blaine. Just because… I know I never told you as much as you did but I loved you. Or, I love you. I still love you. That’s part of why…” Sebastian felt like he was going to be sick, not wanting to admit what he knew he had to. Blaine deserved the truth, didn’t he?

Honestly, it seemed Sebastian had only two options. He stayed quiet and Blaine left him and that was that or Sebastian told him. If he still left, Sebastian had done all he could but maybe Sebastian could convince him to stay. God, he hoped he could convince him to stay.

“I thought you should have more,” Sebastian said, chancing a glance at his ex and seeing just how confused Blaine was looking at him. Sebastian sighed. “Come on, Blaine. You can’t tell me you wouldn’t have been… happier with somebody who could tell you how much he loved you, who was… better at loving you.”

Blaine blinked, his fingers twitching as if he was going to reach out before reconsidering. “Sebastian, you were great at loving me. You were always supportive of me and my dreams. Just because you didn’t constantly tell me you love me doesn’t mean I didn’t know you did. Sebastian, I’ve known you since we were 16. I can see through your hard exterior at this point.”

Sebastian shook his head, not wanting Blaine to try to minimize this. “You just asked if I loved you.”

Blaine sighed and he really did reach out then. Sebastian met his hand in the middle of the table, tangling their fingers and holding on tight. “I’m not saying I don’t want to hear it sometimes. But you just let me go. You can see why I’d doubt it.”

“I thought you’d… find something else,” Sebastian said quietly. He’d known it was a mistake as soon as he’d let Blaine leave. He’d wanted to call Blaine a dozen times, wanted to beg him to come back. Because Blaine was the best Sebastian was ever going to find. Sebastian loved him with everything he had. “Somebody who didn’t try to push you away every time you wanted to come closer.”

Looking down at their hands, Blaine shook his head. He sniffed, reaching his free hand up to rub his still dry eyes. “No. I tried. I went on a couple dates but I couldn’t even imagine being with anybody but you. It’s always been you.”

Sebastian pulled Blaine’s hand up to his lips, pressing a kiss to his knuckles. He could try to say something snappy, something sarcastic. But the truth was, Blaine knew him better. Blaine had always known that Sebastian had a heart underneath the wall he tried to hide behind. Sebastian had never been able to hide from Blaine, just like Blaine had never been able to hide from Sebastian.

“Will you stay?” Sebastian asked quietly, feeling more vulnerable than he’d ever felt before. When they’d been teenagers, Sebastian hadn’t realized just how serious he was about Blaine. It had been almost a game to ask Blaine to go out with him, to get him into bed, to win his heart. But this was serious. This was Sebastian wanting Blaine forever, and he knew he had to change. “I love you, Blaine. And I’ve been trying to get over you but it won’t ever happen.”

Blaine sighed quietly and Sebastian held his breath, sure this was when he finally lost Blaine for good. It wasn’t a surprise but it hurt. “You have to talk to me more. We have to work on this together,” Blaine said before he smiled, looking up at Sebastian with such affection that Sebastian had to smile back. “But I told you, I haven’t even gotten a new place yet. I’ve just been waiting for you to admit you can’t live without me.”

Sebastian laughed, squeezing his hand. Just seven months ago, he would’ve tried to deny it. Blaine would’ve been able to see right through him, would’ve been disappointed, but he would’ve smiled anyway. But Sebastian wanted to protect Blaine’s heart, wanted to prove just how much he’d missed him. Blaine was right. It had to be different. Sebastian had to be different.

“I can’t live without you,” Sebastian said and the grin that Blaine gave him was more than worth it. The words weren’t as hard to say as he’d thought, simply because they were the truth. It was kind of freeing to admit and it was wonderful to be able to make Blaine so happy. “I can’t promise I’m not going to be an idiot again. But I’m going to try.”

“You’ve always been an idiot. I’m used to it,” Blaine teased, sounding a lot more like his old self than he had and Sebastian was grateful.

The last thing he wanted was knowing he was responsible for Blaine being so unhappy.

“No more calling me drunk at 1:30 in the morning, though.”

“Why would I need to do that? The next time I go out, you’re coming with me,” Sebastian said, sitting back in his chair and smiling.

He was still hungover and felt like Blaine deserved better than him. But honestly, Blaine deserved better than anybody. All Sebastian could do was try to be the best he could be for him.

Blaine loved him, though. And for Blaine, Sebastian would try.