Warning: Aliens, disturbing imagery, human experimentation, captivity and generally dark material
Word Count: 2,638
Summary: A year and three months ago, Blaine was an ordinary boy with dream, friends, and the love of his life. Then he was taken.
A/N: So I am in the processing of moving all the fics that I've published on my tumblr (found here) to my livejournal. This is a product of growing up with too many X Files episodes and watching to many alien movies.
They let Blaine see. He’s not sure if that makes it better or worse. There’s a screen at the top of his tube, flickering through images of home. Of his mom, his dad, Cooper, Kurt. He’s not sure how it works, but then, he’s not sure how anything works. Not really. Not since he’d been taken.
The word sounds so strange when he thinks it (he doesn’t speak anymore, probably couldn’t even if he tried), so foreign. Like something out of a nightmare. Maybe that’s what this is. One elaborate nightmare. He’s pretty sure he would have woken up by now, if that were true. He never does. He doesn’t do anything, just waits for them to come.
He’s not sure how long he’s been gone, but it must have been awhile, judging from what he sees on the screen. The days (are there even days here, he’s not really sure how it works), blend together. Sometimes it feels like forever between visits from them, from the aliens, whatever they’re called. Sometimes they won’t leave him alone, the whir of his tube opening a too-frequent signal of their presence.
He has nothing else to do, so he watches. In the beginning he could see people crying, his mom collapsed on the couch, a picture of him clutched in her thin hands, police always coming and going. Sometimes he would see Kurt, curled up on his bed, calling Blaine’s cell phone over and over. It would always go immediately to voicemail, Blaine had it on him when they took him, has no idea what happened to it next. Or any of his other clothes. Naked has become the norm, up here.
In the beginning, he would reach out. The tube is small, but he would squirm until his hands brushed over the images on the screen. His mother’s tear stained face, his father’s angry one. The blank look that’s taken over Kurt. He doesn’t, not anymore. It seems pointless, really. His family is moving on, slowly, his room left untouched, pictures of him displayed on the mantle place with a bouquet of flowers, like a funeral. Kurt’s mounted a picture next to his bed and he touches it every night before he goes to sleep, but he’s stopped crying all the time, has stopped searching for Blaine.
Blaine’s happy they’ve moved on, in a way. He knows looking is useless. They’ll never find him. He wants Kurt to move on, wants his family to be happy again. There’s no hope for him, not anymore. Most of the time Blaine just closes his eyes. He wishes they would turn off the screen, it’s too painful to watch, knowing he’ll never see them again. But they don’t, they never do.
Right now Kurt’s sleeping, his New York dorm dark, curled up against his pillow, his chest rising and falling rhythmically, the stuffed dog he gave Blaine tucked under his arm. Blaine would ache, if he had anything left in him. Instead he just watches, weirdly detached, finds himself wondering if Kurt’s going say yes to that boy who keeps asking him out. Blaine thinks he should, he seems nice. Kurt deserves someone nice.
The familiar whir surrounds him, Kurt splitting in the middle as the tube opens. Blaine’s learned not to struggle. Struggling only makes things worse, he figured that out early on. Spindly arms wrap around him, pulling him out of his tube. Blaine might as well be a ragdoll; he sort of feels like one, lose and boneless, whatever they’ve been putting in the stuff they pump in his stomach at meal times making his limbs feel like hundred pound weights.
He doesn’t know what’s in store for him today, he’s lost count of the tests and experiments, just holds on to the hope that one day it will be over. Someday. Maybe. He knows there was a girl here before him, Sarah or Shawna or something like that. He doesn’t really remember. But she’s gone now, he doesn’t know how, or where she went, but he remembers the look in her eyes right before she left. Broken and hopeful. He hopes someday that’s him. Wherever she is, it must be better than here.
Today they strap him to a table. He doesn’t remember much after that.
He’s back in the tube, feeling exhausted, throbbing and aching, half lidded eyes watching his mother make dinner. Cooper must be visiting, moving in and out of the kitchen. They look sad, he notices. At one point his mom stops chopping vegetables, her head lowering and back shaking. His father comes in, finds her and pulls her into his arms. She’s mouthing something that looks like miss him and a year and wow. Has it really been a year? It must be because the screen flickers over to Kurt, sitting on the edge of his bed, a photo of Blaine in his hands, his thumb stroking over the tiny print of his face before lifting it to press a light kiss to the glass. Rachel enters the room at some point, sitting next to Kurt, eyes sad as she looks at the photo.
Blaine closes his eyes, would scream if he could, more emotions rising in him than he’s felt in a long time. This can’t be all there is, it can’t. He had so many plans, plans that are only half remembered now, hopes and dreams that have been sifted away with the rest of him until he’s nothing but a doll for these things to play around with. He pounds the glass of the tube until his knuckles bleed, he kicks and struggles because he just can’t do this anymore, he can’t.
Until they come, the creatures, looks of disappointment on their faces and there’s pain, so much pain, mind whiting out and going blank until Blaine calms down, his body stilling, head lolling to the side, chest heaving.
They leave the screen off after that. Blaine’s glad.
Soon another boy comes. He’s in the tube next to Blaine’s. He cries a lot, but Blaine did too, in the beginning. He watches Blaine through the glass, eyes wide and desperate, like Blaine knows some secret way out, some trick to help him. Blaine wants to tell him to just give up, it’s not worth it. But he doesn’t. He just stares back, wonders if his eyes look as empty as he feels, before turning his attention up to the now blank white screen.
They take him and the boy watches with scared eyes, but Blaine knows he’s really just glad it’s not his turn, not yet. It feels like days before Blaine’s brought back to the tube, the contraption they’ve been tweaking still wrapped around his head, covering his eyes and filling his mouth. It’s not often they put him back in the tube before they’re done with him, but it happens sometimes. Blaine figures he needs longer to stew, for them to get whatever results they need. He wonders if they boy is watching him now, how frightened he must be. Blaine shifts, the metal of the contraption clinking against the glass and there’s a sob from somewhere to his right. He wishes the boy didn’t have to see this. Seeing makes it worse.
They don’t take it off, that’s the worst part. The metal contraption stays on and Blaine wonders if this is what they’ve been working towards, if this is his ultimate purpose. It hurts, digging into his cheeks and his temples, cutting his tongue, pressing too tight against his eyes. They do something to his back, anchoring him on his side and there’s so much pressure, so much pain and for the first time in a long time Blaine feels hot tears pressing behind his eyes, a lump building in his throat and he wants to fight, wants to get away, but he’s pretty sure he’s been drugged and strapped down and it’s useless.
Time sort of blurs together after that. He stays on his side, blind to the world around him, only able to discern the sounds, mechanical whirring and clicking and tapping. Every so often something pulls at him, twists at whatever they’ve done to his back, adjust the cage on his head and he sort of feels like he’s fading away into nothing.
His mind is disconcertingly blank, Kurt’s name, his mom’s face, Cooper floating around sometimes but he never gives them more than half a thought before drifting back into the black haze that is his life now. He can hear whatever they’re doing to the other boy, the whimpers every time they carry the boy past him and Blaine’s almost glad he can’t see, he can just stay lost in the cocoon of his empty mind.
And then one day it changes. He’s jostled around, the cage on his head replaced with something smaller, something more compact, still covering his mouth and eyes but it no longer digs in painfully, the pressure in his back suddenly gone. He’s being moved, wonders if he’s going back to the tube, if they’ll at least give him a few days before they pull him out again. But instead of the glass of the tube he’s placed on a cool metal table and there’s chattering all around him, a sizzling sound, like static electricity, his skin suddenly buzzing and it’s building, building, building, until he arches up because he’s burning oh god this is it, this must be the end.
And then there’s nothing.
Being home is hard for Kurt. Home reminds him of Blaine. His bed where they used to lay, curled up next to each other, tracing each other’s skin with their lips. His front porch where they would kiss goodbye, the promise to see each other the next day lingering on their lips. The park where they would go on evening walks, hands tangled together, laughing as they threw crumbs for the ducks.
But he can’t afford to live in New York over the summer, as much as he would like to, so he’s home, training into his job at the local Starbucks (The Lima Bean is too painful, he never wants to step foot in there again). Mostly he hates the way everyone looks at him. Like they don’t know how to talk to him, pity in their eyes at the boy who’s boyfriend disappeared over a year ago. So he busies himself with work, picking up as many shifts as he can, staying home and helping his dad at the auto shop. It helps, or it at least gets him through the day, each day survived one less until he can get back to New York.
Rachel works the closing shift with him, having also opted to stay home in Lima for the summer. Sometimes Kurt wonders if it’s possible to have a Rachel overdose, but they live close by and it saves money to carpool, so it’s worth it. Plus, Rachel is one of the few people who doesn’t baby him, doesn’t send him sad, lingering looks or ask him how he’s “holding up.”
Tonight Rachel pulls into the driveway, putting her car in park as Kurt gathers his stuff. He’s just about to bid her goodnight until tomorrow when Rachel squints, neck craning as she looks out the window.
“What’s that?” She asks, finger pointing towards his front lawn. “There’s something in your yard.”
“What?” Kurt asks, blinks as he looks where Rachel’s pointing. There is something, a oddly shaped lump, of what Kurt can’t tell, and he frowns, getting out the car. His steps are slow at first, then speeding as he realizes what the lump is, his heart pounding all the way up his throat and he’s running, falling to his knees in the soft grass.
The lump is a body, is Blaine, his Blaine, oh god oh god oh god. There’s shouting, loud in his ears and it takes a moment to realize it’s him, Rachel running to his side, her shriek echoing through the neighborhood. Blaine’s naked, his skin pale with a strange hue, painful looking marks all over his body, dotting down his spine and legs, up the back of his neck. There is something strapped to his face, metal covering his eyes and branching down to form a muzzle over his mouth and chin and Kurt doesn’t hesitate, his fingers frantically working to get it off.
The sounds of Rachel’s sobs have attracted attention, the front door opening and Burt stepping out with a gruff shout, before he’s rushing to them.
“What’s going on?”
“I don’t know,” Rachel cries and Kurt barely pays attention, all his focus on getting this thing off of Blaine. “It’s Blaine, oh my god, it’s Blaine.”
Burt’s shouting directions, telling Rachel to run inside and call an ambulance, his hands joining Kurt’s in trying to figure out how to remove the muzzle. He’s not sure what they did but suddenly there’s a clicking noise and the metal straps detach, falling off Blaine’s face and onto the ground.
Kurt immediately cradles Blaine’s head in his lap, Burt feeling for a pulse, resting his hand in front of Blaine’s mouth.
“He’s alive,” Burt says and Kurt’s crying, his hands running through Blaine’s hair.
“You’re alive, you’re alive,” Kurt sobs to Blaine, even though he knows that doesn’t mean he’s okay, Blaine looks anything but okay. He can see now, the same marks on his back at Blaine’s temples, the base of his jaw and he feels anger and nausea rising in him at the thought of whoever did this to his poor, sweet Blaine. Blaine’s hair is cut short, shaved in patches just behind his ears, and Kurt strokes a hand down Blaine’s face, can’t believe he’s here, so long after he ever gave up hope of finding him.
“I’m going to grab him a blanket, okay?” Burt says, standing. “You stay here with him.”
Kurt nods, doesn’t think he could physically be anywhere else right now. Burt disappears inside and Kurt keeps up his gentle stream of murmured words to Blaine, his hand finding Blaine’s and lacing their fingers, Blaine’s grip limp, his skin cold.
“I’m here, Blaine, you’re here, oh my god, you’re here, I missed you so much, I missed you, and I love you, I love you,” Kurt rambles, hand squeezing Blaine’s. Burt’s back with a blanket, draping it over Blaine’s body and Kurt nearly jumps when Blaine stirs. His fingers twitch in Kurt’s hand, his eyes cracking barely open.
“Blaine?” Kurt says and Blaine’s eyes shift slowly to look up at him. Nothing flashes across his face, no recognition or emotion, he simply stares for a moment before closing them again. “Blaine, it’s okay, you’re okay. You’re safe now okay, you’re safe. I have you and I’m not letting go. You’re safe.”
He thinks he feels Blaine shudder slightly but then there’s the sirens of an ambulance, loud and blaring and Blaine’s gone still again, paramedics rushing towards them. They’re asking questions Kurt doesn’t know how to answer, he doesn’t know how Blaine got here, if he’s been given anything, what’s wrong with him. They pull him away from Kurt onto a backboard, strapping a machine to his arm and taking vital signs before loading him onto the stretcher. Blaine looks so small and pale surrounded by everyone and everything, and Kurt can’t let him be taken away, fighting against his father as they load him into the ambulance.
“Please let me go with him,” he’s shouting. “Please, he’s my boyfriend, don’t take him away from me again, please.”
The paramedics looks generally sorry as they hook Blaine up. “I’m sorry kid, you can meet us there, okay?”
And then the doors are closing and they’re gone and Kurt feels empty again.