Title: Just A Spoonful Of Thai Food aka Perfect Is Overrated Anyway
Summary: Creating a perfect moment isn't easy. However, that shouldn't stop a person from trying, right?
A/N Proposal!fic!! Also known as The Five Times Blaine Tries To Propose And One Other Time. Fluff. Possibly a little bit on the silly side.
“Is it much further?” Kurt asks, sounding a little whiny. “I'm tired.”
Blaine just keeps on walking, leading the way around the lake to that perfect little spot he found the day before. “We've only been walking for two minutes.”
“I'm not wearing the right shoes for this. You could have told me where we were going. There's so much dirt everywhere.”
“Just trust me. It'll be worth it when we get there.”
Kurt doesn't seem convinced. “It's gonna be dark soon and we won't find our way back to the car. And we'll be completely covered in insect bites of we ever do get back. We might drown in the lake first. And I can never wear these shoes again.”
Blaine sighs. “We're almost there, and I brought a flashlight for the way back, and I'm not gonna let you drown in the lake, I promise. And I'll personally clean your shoes tomorrow.”
“I'm not letting you anywhere near my shoes. You don't even know how to-”
“Then I'll pay to have them cleaned.”
“What about the insect bites?” Kurt reminds him, stumbling along behind.
Not ten minutes later, however, Blaine is spreading out the picnic blanket and Kurt's expression softens a little as he looks out over the grass to where it meets the lake shore in the beginning twilight of a fading sun.
“Well, this isn't too bad, I guess,” he admits.
“Yes, well, and I didn't believe you.”
“Do you believe me now?”
Kurt rolls his eyes and settles down beside Blaine on the blanket. “I just don't understand why you're so insistent on having dinner outside where all kinds of six-legged creatures will be crawling all over our food.”
Blaine grins and presses a quick kiss to Kurt's lips. “Six years in New York have turned you into such a city boy. Just give this a try, okay?”
“Only because you asked so nicely. But the very second I see something with an exoskeleton crawl across my leg, I'm on my way back to the car, with or without you.”
It does turn out to be a very nice evening after all, once Blaine manages to distract Kurt from the potential threat of bugs and spiders.
They eat, they talk, they laugh, and they spend a good fifteen minutes just rolling around on the blanket making out like teenagers, which is only complicated by the fact that Kurt squeals and rolls away every time he gets too close to the edge of the blanket (grass stains, Blaine!) and the fact that Blaine doesn't want it to go too far yet. There's something else he needs to do first.
Finally, they're just sitting there, watching the sunset. Kurt is leaning against him and Blaine has one arm around his waist, the other squeezed around the small box in his pocket.
He's glad he's waited for this until their trip back to Ohio. This is where they began and this is where they'll decide to take it a step further. Also, Kurt's family lives here, and they'll want to celebrate this with them. It's so perfect in every way, he's still a little amazed he came up with this elaborate romantic plan. Well – to be quite honest, he's had help.
He's never thought of himself as the most romantic guy in the world. He may have his moments, but they're usually of the spontaneous kind. But actually planning something this romantic? Not so much his greatest talent, he thinks. And Kurt loves romance. That's why he has spent hours on the phone with Rachel and Mercedes – after all, they are the two people besides him who know Kurt best – and now that he's here with Kurt, it seems that it was worth it.
Kurt shifts against him and he pulls him closer, thinking, now. This is it.
“Kurt,” he says, not taking his eyes off the setting sun, because he wants to get this right, no distractions. “There's a reason I brought you here today. I've been meaning to ask you something, for some time now and I-”
Kurt interrupts him with a loud snoring noise as his head falls off Blaine's shoulder and sags against his chest.
“Kurt?” he tries, prodding him gently.
He feels like he's pulling several muscles in his neck as he has to bend his head awkwardly to get a proper look at his boyfriend. Who is very much asleep, a peaceful expression on his face as he's drooling slightly onto Blaine's shirt.
Blaine sighs and lowers them both down onto the blanket, hugging Kurt to his chest so that his head comes to rest upon Blaine's shoulder.
Kurt blinks up at him half-awake as soon as they're settled. “I'm sorry, were you saying something?” he mumbles, his voice already heavy with sleep.
“It can wait,” Blaine says. “Go back to sleep, I'll wake you up when we have to go home.”
He will need to make some more phone calls first thing tomorrow, though. Obviously, he's in need of a new plan.
Okay, so the first idea didn't exactly work out the way he imagined. Blaine isn't going to give up, though. One quick phone call to Rachel and one much longer phone call to Mercedes later he has a new plan. A better one.
And so – two days after his failed first attempt – he's trying again. It's a perfect plan. No, really. Nothing can possibly go wrong this time.
They are going to revisit all the places that meant something to them when they were two teenagers in love. A walk down memory lane. Retracing the steps of their early relationship. Apparently, according to his sources, it's one of the most romantic ways of proposing known to mankind.
So he takes Kurt to Dalton, and they stand on the staircase where they first met, they kiss in the empty common room in which they first kissed, and he can tell that this was a good idea. It's like falling in love all over again.
Lima is next, and they wander around the halls of McKinley, they go to Breadstix, they sit at their old table at the Lima Bean where they first said 'I love you.'
It's the most romantic day, ever. Seriously.
And Blaine knows when they pull into the driveway of Kurt's parents' house, just around the scheduled time, that no one is going to be there, because Rachel has promised him to enlist Finn to get Burt and Carole out of their way for the evening. He really kind of wants this to be a private moment.
That's why he's a little taken aback to find Finn watching TV in the living room when they enter the house after several minutes of kissing on the front porch (because that's what they did when they were sixteen and he's taking this 'retracing their steps' thing very, very seriously).
“Hey, you're home early.” Finn greets them, shoveling popcorn into his mouth.
“What are you doing here?” Blaine asks, not very politely. But, after all, Finn doesn't even live here anymore.
“Watching TV,” Finn explains. “Mine's broken and Burt and mom are out tonight, so... But, hey.” He switches off the TV and beams up at them. “I've only seen you for, like, five minutes since you got here. I've been so busy at work. How are you both doing?”
And then Kurt is sitting on the couch next to Finn, talking about New York and their new apartment and all the auditions he's had over the past few months and Blaine gives up and sits down with them and lets the stepbrothers have their little overdue reunion.
It's only when he switches his phone back on and reads the text from Rachel, saying: 'Couldn't reach Finn, but I got Burt and Carole theater tickets. Hope everything goes well. ;)' that he fully understands the flaw in his plan.
This time, though, there will be no interruptions. Nothing can possibly go wrong. Absolutely nothing.
He's been on the phone with Rachel and Mercedes the minute they got back to New York and this time they have come up with something that is absolutely foolproof. And it's going to be amazing. Third time's a charm, right? So when the big evening arrives, he's only a little bit nervous. No, honestly. Just a little bit.
Because, as he's quickly finding out, planning romantic moments is really hard work. But when he leads Kurt up to the roof and sees the expression on his face and it's so exactly like he's pictured it, a little overwhelmed and completely impressed, he knows he's created one of those moments, and he actually feels a little bit proud of himself.
There's the soft light from the small lanterns, there's the beautifully laid table, and there's romantic music playing softly from... well... a CD player. He originally wanted a string quartet, but Mercedes talked him out of it. (“Don't do that. It's romantic at first but then it just gets kind of awkward after a while to have four people hovering in the background while you eat.”)
They have dinner, they talk, they hold hands and deeply gaze into each others' eyes. A lot. Just the way they did on their first few dates. It's going great.
Then, Blaine turns up the volume of the music and pulls Kurt into his arms, starting to slow-dance with him across the rooftop.
Kurt sighs and leans his head against Blaine's shoulder. “So, what did I do to deserve this? The dinner, the candles, the music? You know you don't have to charm your way into my pants anymore, right?”
“You're so romantic.” Blaine laughs, before he kisses Kurt and brings one hand up to his face to gently brush his fingertips against his boyfriend's temple. “And, actually, I did have a reason for doing all this.”
Kurt raises an eyebrow at him. “Oh?”
Blaine gathers all the courage he can find and takes a deep breath. “Listen, Kurt, I-” is all he manages to get out before his voice is drowned out by the loud roll of thunder above them and then rain is coming down in large drops, bouncing off their bodies and the roof and forming pools around their feet.
Kurt shrieks and brings his hands up over his head, protecting his hair while he runs for cover.
They spend the next few minutes rescuing their belongings from the rooftop, almost slipping on the fire escape a few times, and when they're finally safely back in their apartment with the window closed behind them, they are both shivering and soaked to the skin and Blaine feels like maybe he should postpone this once again.
He's about to start feeling very frustrated when Kurt sneaks up behind him, wrapping his arms around his waist and saying something about hot showers and sharing body heat and Blaine thinks that maybe it isn't such a bad night after all as he follows his boyfriend into the bathroom.
Not wanting to take any chances with the weather this time – he had checked the forecast last time, dammit, and it had said nothing about rain, let alone a full-blown thunderstorm – he decides that this time they will have to have a roof over their heads. Just to be on the safe side.
Rachel helps him pick the perfect restaurant – well, she picks it for him, really, but that's okay with him, because a) he doesn't really care about the 'where' anymore, he just wants to get this right already and b) every time he makes a suggestion of his own Rachel talks for an hour about all the things that are wrong with the place he picked.
So. He has made a reservation, he has put on the suit he knows Kurt likes seeing him in and slipped the little black box into his pocket, the box he has carried around with him to quite a few different locations by now.
In fact, he's done with everything way too early and left with nothing to do but to pace the apartment while he's waiting for Kurt to get home. He doesn't dare sit down, because he doesn't want to wrinkle his clothes. Kurt sees things like that. But there's still so much time and he's just considering whether he could risk sitting down anyway, because the couch really does look awfully comfortable and he's really tired of pacing and he feels kind of stupid just standing around in the middle of his own living room, when his phone rings. It's Kurt.
“I can't make it.”
Blaine needs a second before he responds. “What? Why?”
“Rehearsal. I'm gonna be stuck here for at least two more hours.” Kurt sighs. “They've come up with new arrangements for almost all of the songs this afternoon.”
“I'm so, so sorry, Blaine. I'd really rather have dinner with you than-”
“No, no, it's okay, I understand,” Blaine cuts him off, because he does understand.
“Are you sure?” Kurt sounds concerned and Blaine just loves him so much right now, even though he'd rather be annoyed.
“Don't be silly. It's just dinner. We can do dinner anytime. This isn't your fault. I'll stay up until you get home and then you can complain to me in detail about everything.”
“You know you don't have to, right?”
“I know. I want to.”
“The old arrangements were fine, really.” Kurt sighs. “This is just so much extra work and it's completely unnecessary.”
Blaine smiles, because he knows that Kurt secretly loves this. The stress, the extra work, everything about it, because it's his dream, after all. “I'll see you when you get home.”
“I love you.”
“I love you, too.”
He hangs up, sits back, and, after a few minutes of processing, bursts into a laughing fit that lasts approximately thirty minutes and leaves him a little breathless and with a hiccup and a sharp sting in his sides as he goes to change out of his suit and into his sweatpants.
If he were a more spiritual guy, he would swear that some higher power was conspiring against him.
Simple. This time it's gonna be simple. Because he's not taking any chances anymore. There will be no interruptions, no cancellations, no nothing. Just to be completely on the safe side, he switches off his phone and then does the same to Kurt's phone while he isn't looking.
It's a Sunday, and they're both home, and they spend the evening watching TV (Blaine lets Kurt choose the movie because that way it's sure to be something romantic that will work beautifully to set the mood for later, and even when Kurt picks “Star!” because he's in a “Julie Andrews-mood,” Blaine decides that's okay. They will still cuddle a lot, it's gonna be fine.)
He finds himself watching Kurt more than he's watching the movie, which earns him a few very stern looks, because, as Kurt has explained to him several times over the past few years, there's no point in watching a great movie together if one person isn't watching, because how will they be able to talk about it later. Also, they are not sixteen anymore and have kind of outgrown that phase in which it is more important to sneak glances at one another and hold hands and make out than to pay attention to the screen.
Blaine gives them exactly fifteen minutes for some lazy cuddling and a little light making out after the end credits roll, before he raises himself into a sitting position and takes a deep breath.
Kurt's sits up as well in order to keep kissing him, but Blaine stops him by placing a hand to his chest, right over Kurt's heart, and smiles nervously.
“No, wait.” All right, this is it. The moment. He has spent the past few days deciding on the perfect song (“Thank You For Loving Me?” “When You Say Nothing At All?” There have been a lot of really good and a lot of really bad suggestions from both Rachel and Mercedes, all of which he has mostly ignored) and finally – after a lot of searching and thinking – he's found it.
“There's something I need to ask you. Please, listen carefully, this is important.” He reaches for his guitar which he has conveniently placed behind the couch at some point during the afternoon, and with a last (slightly insecure, there's nothing he can do about that) smile, begins to play. He focuses on his guitar, on his fingers, everything but Kurt as he starts singing.
I saw you dancing out the ocean
Running fast along the sand
A spirit born of earth and water
Fire flying from your hands
In the instant that you love someone
In the second that the hammer hits
Reality runs up your spine
And the pieces finally fit
He looks up and Kurt is smiling at him and he smiles back, getting more confident by the second.
And all I ever needed was the one
Like freedom fields where wild horses run
When stars collide like you and I
No shadows block the sun
You're all I've ever needed
Baby you're the one
Oh, this is so gonna work, he knows it. Kurt looks at him with that expression that means he's doing something right and why hasn't he come up with this plan sooner, because it's perfect. He's always been really good at singing about his feelings.
There are caravans we follow
Drunken nights in dark hotels
When chances breathe between the silence
Where sex and love no longer gel
For each man in his time is Cain
Until he walks along the beach
And sees his future in the water
A long lost heart within his reach
He's been looking back down at his fingers for the last few lines, trying to keep it together until the song ends, because his chest is so full of feelings now it can barely contain all of them. So he puts them into his voice as he looks up again into Kurt's eyes to finish the song.
And all I ever needed was the one
Like freedom fields where wild horses run
When stars collide like you and I
No shadows block the sun
You're all I've ever needed
Baby you're the one
Kurt's eyes are brimming with tears and he smiles at Blaine in a way that still makes his stomach do a series of somersaults, even after all these years. “So, I've been meaning to ask you this for some time-” he falters, catching his breath for the speech he prepared months ago. But Kurt seems to be ahead of him.
“Oh my god, yes,” he breathes.
“Yes?” Blaine takes Kurt's hands in his own, his heart beating somewhere in the vicinity of his ears. Kurt gets it. Just like that. He has to finish the question anyway, he has to do this right. “Kurt, I... I just want to-”
“Oh, you have to.” Kurt nods enthusiastically. “You have to do this song, they will love it. Oh god, it's perfect for you, even though I wouldn't have expected-”
“What?” Blaine thinks something must be going on that he isn't aware of, like maybe he has missed a few minutes of their conversation, or fallen through a dimensional rift into a different reality.
“It's for your gig next week, right?” Kurt looks positively excited now, clapping his hands together as he lets out a delighted squeal. “Sing it again, but not on the couch. This position is completely cutting off your air. Wait... Sit over here.” He jumps up, taking Blaine's hand and pulling him across the room to push him into a chair, handing him his guitar. “Well, no not the chair, no you have to stand up, you'll do the gig standing up...” Kurt keeps mumbling more to himself than to Blaine as he pulls him to his feet again. “And it really is a piano song, maybe you should try that next and then we decide which version is better...”
“Um, Kurt, I-” Blaine doesn't really know what to say. Because this? Not how he had expected the night to go. Kurt had looked at him in that way...
“Be a little more confident with the beginning,” Kurt advises. “Maybe play a longer intro, build the mood a little...”
Blaine sighs and surrenders. And spends the rest of the night singing a song that has nothing to do with his gig next week, while Kurt offers helpful advice and even sings it with him a few times, just for the fun of it.
He knows he'll be home before Kurt. Kurt's been home late every night for a few weeks now, busy with rehearsals, and that fact alone has effectively put a stop to any plans Blaine might have had for the moment.
He's thinking opening night, though. Maybe. They can celebrate Kurt's success – because he knows it will be a success, he's heard Kurt sing too many times to doubt it – and then he can pop the question over their celebratory glass of champagne after they make it back to their apartment.
But that day is still over two weeks away and right now, he's just hungry and tired from his own rehearsal and too lazy to cook anything. So he settles for take-out and ends up ordering way too much because he knows Kurt will be hungry when he gets home.
He's comfortable in front of the TV, feet on the coffee table and about to doze off when he hears the apartment door open and close. It's after eleven and he yawns as he scrambles to his feet just as Kurt is hanging up his coat. And when Blaine greets him and pulls him into a tight hug he just sags against him. “Tired,” he mumbles.
“Rough day?” Blaine asks, pulling back slightly so he can look at him.
Kurt rolls his eyes. “You have no idea. It was crazy. I didn't even have time to eat anything all day. I'm starving.”
“There's take-out in the fridge,” Blaine says, and then stumbles forward as he's trying to keep his balance because Kurt is out of his arms and on his way to the kitchen before he has even finished speaking.
Blaine follows him, finding his boyfriend half in the refrigerator, shoveling Thai food into his mouth as if he hasn't eaten in years.
“Well, that's attractive,” Blaine laughs.
Kurt turns around and beams at him. “You're the best,” he says, closing the door to the fridge with his hip. “I love you,” he adds through a mouthful of fried rice. “Marry me.”
“Okay,” Blaine responds, before his tired brain fully catches up to the conversation.
Kurt's head snaps up, a piece of pineapple dangling from the plastic fork suspended in the air just halfway to his mouth. “What?”
“Oh.” Blaine tilts his head a little and attempts a smile. “Um. Yes?”
“Yes? You mean... like...”
“As in, yes, I'll marry you?”
Kurt sets the take-out container down on the kitchen counter and bends his head, taking a few deep breaths before looking up again. “So. Just to make sure – did I just accidentally propose to you and hear you accept?”
Blaine nods. “I believe that's what happened, yes.”
They just sort of stare at each other for a moment before Kurt shrugs and breaks into a grin, blushing a little. “So? What now? Are we serious about this?”
“You're the one who did the proposing,” Blaine says, grinning back.
“And you're the one who did the accepting,” Kurt reminds him, and the next second, Blaine's across the kitchen, hurling himself into Kurt's arms with enough force to almost make them lose their balance as they cling to each other, and they're laughing, laughing, almost hysterically, because it kind of seems like the thing to do, and also because they both need a while to process... everything.
“Well, isn't that romantic,” Kurt finally says, still giggling a little as he pulls back from Blaine. “I feel like I should make a ring for you out of tinfoil or something-”
Blaine shuts him up with a kiss, wet and sloppy and a little desperate because finally, finally and god isn't this how he planned it, but what the hell, right?
“Come with me,” he says a little breathlessly when they break apart and leads Kurt into the living room. “Wait here,” he instructs, dashing off into the bedroom to retrieve the definitely-not-made-of-tinfoil ring from the drawer.
The look on Kurt's face when he returns and holds out his hand, the tiny black box with the lid open on his palm, is really everything he could have hoped for. “How did you... When did you...” Kurt takes the box from him and just looks at it, mouth hanging slightly open.
Blaine shrugs, taking the ring and slipping it onto Kurt's finger. “I'll explain later. There are much more important things to take care of right now.” He leans in for a kiss, and then there's really no need for them to talk anymore for a while.
“I can't believe we're getting married,” Kurt says when they're curled up together on their rumpled sheets a while later and no longer tired. “I can't believe believe I proposed to you like that. In the kitchen. Over cheap take-out.”
“I'm not complaining,” Blaine answers. “But wait till you hear my side of the story.” And he starts telling it – and he knows it's the kind of story they will definitely, one day, be telling their grandchildren.
A/N: The song Blaine sings to Kurt is Elton John's "The One." Listen to it here.