DISCLAIMER: They ain't mine, yo. Same goes for all the rest of the scenes, dawg.
Kurt shifts restlessly on the bench at lunch, trying not to zone out on Scott's voice, and failing miserably. Guiltily, he catches his gaze drifting again, falling for the dozenth time on the Brotherhood boys lounging against one of the skool buildings. As they have been for, well, the entire weekend, his thoughts are focusing themselves involuntarily on Todd. And despite all the contemplation he's no less confused than he was the moment this all began.
Kurt can't take it anymore. His instinctual attempts to make eye contact in the halls and involuntary fixation whenever Todd's in view is driving him crazy. He watches the Brotherhood members closely for a few minutes. Pietro's talking animatedly to Lance; or at least, talking to himself while Lance happens to be in the vicinity. Freddie's hanging back, listening with a slightly bored look on his face, and Todd...Todd's crouching to the side, only close enough to still be considered part of the group, his eyes drifting...they make eye contact almost immediately, and Kurt nods to the side, hoping Todd will take the hint and follow him behind one of the buildings. But Todd's already looking away, and Kurt curses softly under his breath.
'That's it.' Kurt sneaks away from the table, thankful none of his friends noticed, and hurries over to the buildings, keeping the Brotherhood boys in sight. As soon as he's far enough from the eyes of the students milling around he 'ports, reappearing just around the corner of the building where they're hanging out. Steeling himself (and making sure the Pietro and Lance are suitably distracted) he creeps forward. Reaching Todd quickly, he pulls on the other boy's sleeve to get his attention and whispers, "We need to talk."
Head lazily being propped up by his hand, Todd vacantly eyes a pesky little fly buzzing around his hair as he halfheartedly listens to Pietro babble on about something or other. Most of his mind is focused on Kurt, however: the furtive glances they've been sharing all morning and the fact that he's still no closer to being any less confused. Biting the inside of his cheek, he chances a quick look at the X-Geeks table and notices that Kurt is nowhere in sight. Now where could he have--"Shit!" He whirls around to see golden eyes staring back at him, framed by a flesh-toned face and indigo hair. "Don't do that!" Todd snaps, pulling away. He decides to fix his gaze on anything but Kurt and settles on Lance's shoe. "Anyway, can't it wait, yo? I'm kinda, eh.. busy right now."
Noting that the background noise has become decisively thinner, he glances up to see Pietro watching him from the corner of his eye and he cringes. This day's gonna go from all right to bad to fucking awful in a matter of seconds, he can feel it.
Lance is surprised out of his current bored stupor by the sudden absence of Pietro's voice. He looks up with a start, glancing around warily...until his eyes come to rest on Todd, and the Fuzzball who happens to be crouching beside him. His lip curls, showing teeth. His voice, when he speaks, is underlaid with danger. "Todd?"
/Yep, 'all right' to 'bad,'/ Todd mutters inwardly, shifting his gaze from Pietro to Lance. He grins sheepishly. "Lance?"
Lance raises an eyebrow. "Got a problem? Need any...help?"
Todd scratches his head and briefly looks at Kurt, who's being unusually quiet, and shrugs. "Er, no, I'm, eh.. I've got it under control, man." He suddenly wishes he had some sort of psychic power so he could mentally will Kurt away.. he tries to do it anyway, and fails quite miserably. Sigh. Yeah, Lance's shoes are really interesting to look at. Has that mud spot always been there?
Meanwhile, Pietro glances from Todd to Kurt to Lance and does one more go around, folding his arms across his chest. He pouts as his eyes finally settle on Lance, brow quirked curiously. "Am I missing something here? 'Cause it really feels like it." His frown deepens. He hates being left out, damnit.
"Nothing you need to worry about, Pietro." Lance advances on Todd and Kurt, ignores Todd and fixes Kurt with an icy stare. "I think it's in everyone's best interests for you to just back off, fuzzy."
Kurt refuses to be cowed, despite Lance's intimidating stance and the anger coming off him in spades. "I had thought that was for Todd to decide," he snaps, then turns his attention to Todd. "Or am I mistaken?"
In a blur, Pietro pushes himself off the wall and scowls at the scene, arms akimbo. Damned if he's not gonna get to the bottom of this. He focuses his glare on Kurt, noting the small things that only someone as innately perceptive as he could catch, such as the X-Geek's obvious distaste for Lance, the more benign way he addresses Todd, and his obvious lack of fashion sense. Are those boxers peeking over the top of his pants..? Pietro shudders.
Todd presses himself as far against the wall as he can, shrinking under the gazes of Kurt and Lance. Throw Pietro into the mix and, damnit, why can't the ground just open up and swallow him now..? "I, uh.." Geez, it's getting hot. Sighing, he turns his attention to Kurt, looking anywhere but his eyes. "So, about that talk.." Anything to get out of this situation. He stands up, shoves his hands into his pockets, and very lightly kicks at Kurt's ankle with the toe of his shoe. "C'mon, fuzzy." He turns to Lance. "Um.. I'll be back."
Kurt, still angry, debates pressing the issue with Lance first. But the fur on the back of his neck starts to bristle, and he looks around to find Scott's shades trained intently on his back. Mouth suddenly dry, he turns back to Todd, suddenly anxious to be out of sight. "Talking is good, yes."
"Todd..." Lance warns, still towering over the Fuzzball.
Cringing at the warning in Lance's voice, Todd dismissively waves his hand. "It'll be all right, yo," he says, grinning meekly and nudging Kurt in the opposite direction, eyes trained on Lance the whole time. "I'll be back, man."
Pietro doesn't like this. Not one bit. Tapping his foot impatiently, he waits for the two younger mutants to leave so he can drag some much-needed information out of Lance.
Kurt allows himself to be led away, trying to ignore the fact that each time Todd nudges him his skin tingles at the contact. His last impression of the rest of the Brotherhood is Lance's stony (no pun intended) face, and he wonders that, in Todd's presence, Lance's obvious rage doesn't scare him...
Eying the two as they leave, Pietro waits until they're out of hearing range before he turns his attention to Lance, expression filled with annoyance. He cuffs the other boy on the shoulder and grumbles, "Spill it."
"No can do, man." Lance swats at Pietro's hand, inwardly cringing. Mr. Hyperactivity is the last person he'd trust with Todd's secret and, unfortunately, the one who'll try the hardest to get it. He sighs. "Just let it drop. It'll be over soon enough anyway." 'I hope.'
Pietro frowns, eyes darting quickly around the campus. When he's satisfied that none of the 'normal' students are watching him, he spins himself into a whirlwind and zips back and forth in front of the other boy. "Well, if you're not gonna tell me," he begins tauntingly, a hint of amusement in his voice. "Then I guess I'll just have to run over there and listen to their conversation, hmmm? I'm sure they'd never notice."
Instinctively Lance grabs at his arm, and is not surprised in the least when he misses. "Pietro, no. This isn't a game, man. This is some serious shit, don't mess it up for him now. He's got it bad enough without us interfering."
Pietro stops, blinks, and darts to Lance's side, his face the epitome of curiosity. "He's got what bad? What's so serious about it? Is that X-Geek giving him trouble, because if he is, I'll kick is sorry blue butt all the way back to Germany before he can say 'wienerschnitzel,' man. Don't they know by now not to mess with the Brotherhood?" The other boy doesn't even have a chance to respond before Pietro's attention zips back to Todd and Kurt, glaring daggers at the latter. "ManIhatethoseguys.." he mutters, voice swift with agitaion.
Lance rolls his eyes. The protectiveness is almost cute. Almost. "Just...let Todd take care of it himself. If he needs us he'll ask for help. Until then we should just back off." 'And pray to whatever god will listen that he can handle this,' he adds as a silent afterthought. "Of course, if he DOES ask for help..." he eyes the retreating figures, focusing on Kurt's dark blue hair. His right hand curls into a fist, and pounds against the palm of his left threateningly. "Soon as he says the word, we make Fuzzy's life a living hell."
Pietro grumbles, still upset about not knowing what's going on.. "Fine, I'll drop it." For now, anyway. He smirks in Todd's direction and makes note to corner him later; the little mutant certainly talks the talk, but fails miserably when it comes time to walk the walk. Getting information out of him is never a difficult task. "In the mean time.." His eyes glint mischievously as his gaze falls on the X-Geeks' table, or more specifically, Evan Daniels. "I owe someone a swirly. Seeya, Alvers!" A quick mock-salute and Pietro's gone in a flash. The next thing Lance sees is a blurry, flailing Evan shrieking as he's whisked off into the boy's bathroom.
Chuckling, Lance goes back to surveying the grounds, stopping to glare at the X-Geeks for principle's sake. He's not convinced for a moment that Pietro's going to just give up. He hopes Todd's got the sense (not to mention the balls) to keep his mouth shut when Pietro starts trying to worm the info out of him. For that matter, he hopes Todd's telling the freak off at this moment. He glances in the direction they walked off, as if expecting to see the Fuzzball come running, crying like some bitch that just got dropped by her boyfriend. But the guilty look on Todd's face as he left...Lance scowls, and makes himself a promise. Todd's not going to be hurt by this. He'll do what it takes to prevent that, to protect the boy...even if it means protecting Todd from himself.
Kurt leans against the outside wall of the science lab, running a hand through his hair nervously. The building's rough exterior is warm at this time of day, and it soothes him, if only a little. He's thankful for the silence at least; during lunch everyone's either in the cafeteria or eating on the other side of the campus.
Coming back to himself, Kurt steals a guilty glance at Todd. This isn't going to be easy. "I'm sorry, about what happened back there. I don't want to cause trouble, I just...I had to talk to you."
Todd glances over his shoulder, sees that Lance is no longer in sight, and worries his bottom lip. Half of him wanted to keep the other Brotherhood member in view, just in case something (though, he wasn't sure what--getting into a fight, possibly) happened, but that isn't really an option unless he wants to make a fool of himself. /"Fuzzy boooy, can we go back to the lunch tables so Mama Lancie can keep an eye on us? I scared, yo."/ Todd shudders and shakes the thought out of his head. Yeah, right here is fine.
Nervously scratching his pantleg, he takes a deep breath and releases it in a long, drawn-out sigh, determined to play it cool. "What's to talk about, man? It's over and done with."
"Is it?" Kurt blurts without thinking, then hurriedly backtracks, taking a deep, wavering breath before saying, "Listen, after...well, that night, when I got back to the mansion..." Kurt can't look Todd in the eye. Todd has the right to know what happened when he'd gotten home that night, but guilt seems to be making his throat close up. He turns away, staring instead at the trees behind the school. "I...," he swallows, pauses to gather his thoughts, or his nerves. Maybe both.
Well okay, unless you count your blood freezing as playing it cool, that determination was short-lived. Stomach tight, head pounding, Todd just stares in disbelief, mouth agape. "Wh-what?!" he croaks, hands flying up to yank at the roots of his hair. "H-how could--what--how the FUCK did he find out? Oh, jesus.." He paces back and forth, twitchy fingers combing through his hair, rubbing his temples, his eyes, anything to keep the nervous energy busy. "Fuck.. fuck, fuck, fuck.."
Noting with some surprise that Todd's first words weren't 'How could you TELL him?!' Kurt shoves his embarassment aside to try and calm him down. "It was an accident. He found me on the way back to my room. Looking like I did, hell, -smelling- like I did...it wasn't hard for him to figure out. I'm so sorry, truly, I didn't mean for it to happen! Mein Gott, it was the absolute last thing I would've wanted, I tried to make excuses but it only made things worse-" The words come out in a rush, and when he runs out of things to say he falls silent, holding his hands out in an ineffectual gesture of apology.
Todd freezes mid-pace, his head slowly turning to regard Kurt with wide eyes full of shock. "Wait, wait.. you.. TOLD him?" Well, there goes his assumption about X-Geeks keeping their word. Taking a step forward, his brain tries to form coherent thoughts, but the only one that rings clear is the chanting command of 'DIE DIE DIE DIE.' His fingers itch to wrap around Kurt's throat, and making strangling gestures in the air is all he can do to keep himself from jumping the boy. "What. The. FUCK! How could you do that, man?! What happened to 'no one will ever know?' Fucking hell, couldn't you have just pulled a disappearing act on him?! FUCK!"
"Disappear to WHERE? You've seen Wolverine fight, he's BUILT to hunt, there's no place in the city I could run to!" Kurt cries. He'd been expecting accusation, but now that they're actually here, and Todd's saying these things to him, it hurts much worse than he'd thought. Guilt wars with indignation in his mind, and he struggles to compose himself before he says something he'll regret. "He snuck up on me, he could smell me coming from down the hall; his sense of smell's like a wild animal's or something, he knew before I opened my mouth! What was I supposed to do, keep denying it until he carved the details out of my hide? He threatened to have the Professor read my fucking mind, man! There was nothing I could do!"
Todd throws his hands up in the air and turns the other way, violently racking his brain for the next action to take. Primal instinct says to beat Kurt to a bloody pulp, but what would that solve? Of course, his brain isn't exactly offering up many options.. "Okay," he sighs, trying to calm his nerves. "Okay.." Oh, screw it. With a growl, he whirls around and leaps at Kurt in an attempt to knock him down.
Kurt cries out in surprise as he finds himself slammed into the wall. His head connects loudly with the surface and his feet slip out from under him, sending him to the ground where he lies on his back, staring up at Todd dazedly. "What are you doing?! Fuck!" He rubs the back of his head; there's a small patch of sticky wetness where he hit it, and he winces as the touch sends pain shooting up through his temples.
Todd cringes, gazing down at Kurt guiltily as he catches his breath. In his outburst, he'd forgotten about the wall; he wasn't exactly sure what his intention had originally been, but it certainly didn't involve the other boy's head smacking against concrete. Loudly, at that. He shuddered. Of course, had this been any other time, Todd more than likely would have taken advantage of the situation and either taunted Kurt until he got back on his feet to fight some more or would have simply walked away, snickering. This isn't any other time, though. This is now, and Todd is feeling like an ass, just as he feared he would when the time came to interact with Kurt 'normally' again.
Kneeling down, he reaches out to brush the other boy's hair back to try and inspect the wound, but hesitates and pulls back at the last second. "Sor--" He stops short, because you don't apologize to your enemy. "--eh, you okay, man? Kinda got carried away there for sec, yo.. heh."
Kurt releases the breath he'd held when Todd started reaching for him, and sighs with disappointment. He sits up, earning himself a wave of nausea and an increase in the drum solo going on in his skull; squeezing his eyes shut against the pain, he rubs his forehead harshly. "Just peachy, thanks a lot," he glares at Todd. "As I was trying to tell you before my head was introduced to Mr. Concrete back there, you'd better watch yourself. Logan's said he wouldn't get involved, but if he sees this as a threat to the team...I don't know what he'd do, but I can't imagine it'd be a good thing."
Todd continually glances at the back of Kurt's head as he listens, wincing when he sees a dark spot beginning to soak through the surface of blue hair. "Well, what's he consider a 'threat to the team?' I'll be sure not to do it, man. And," he pauses, eyeing the spot of blood again before lowering his gaze shamefully. "I think there's something you gotta know.."
Kurt's now feeling gingerly around the wound, wincing. Irritation and frustration are starting to get the better of him, and his voice is clipped when he snaps, "According to him, using this to manipulate me would be a 'threat to the team'. You might want to avoid doing that, Logan can be very...inventive with his punishments." He glares at Todd, waiting for him to continue.
Todd briefly considers asking just HOW he'd manipulate Kurt, because as far as Todd knows, fuzzy boy would never let anything like that happen. In lieu of pressing the matter, however, he simply nods, scratching the back of his head nervously. He doesn't have to do this, he reminds himself, but damn, he caused the guy some head trauma; the least he deserves is the truth. "I, um.. I kinda told Lance about what happened.." Defense system on: anticipate broken jaw now.
Kurt didn't think a person's eyes could get this big. He stares at Todd, pain forgotten in the face of overwhelming and holy, righteous indignation. "You did WHAT?!" He leaps to his feet; or at least starts to, before his legs veto that order and send him crashing back to his knees, pounding head bowed, hands clutching at the sides. A moan escapes his throat and he silently curses himself for the show of weakness, but he grasps at his newfound anger like a life-line. "What in the hell were you thinking? You-I can't believe you would-" he snarls wordlessly. "And you jump ME for it getting out, without my control, when you-...What'd you do, go home and gloat with him over a few beers and a game of poker? And now he wants me dead and my head's a fucking mess, not to mention it's covered in blood - this has just been one hell of a weekend, wouldn't you say?!" Kurt's panting now, and recognizes the tone of hysteria in his voice, but he can't help it. All he wants to do is reach over, strangle the boy, and go back to leading a happy, Todd-free life.
"Hey, hey!" Todd shouts, his fists curling at his sides. "First of all, I ain't the one that said, 'oh don't worry, I won't tell anyone.' I wanted to forget about the whole thing, remember?! But no, you had to be all, 'let's just think about it' and so I fucking thought about it and you know what I found out?! Not a damn fucking thing, yo! So Lance asked me what was up, man. I didn't wanna tell 'im at first, but he kept bugging the shit out of me and I figured I needed to talk about it anyway if I was ever gonna sort anything out! And GLOAT? What the hell is there to gloat about?! You don't fucking gloat about foolin- screw- argh! doing the things that we did with your ENEMY." Breathlessly muttering a few more curses, Todd slaps the concrete with his palm and sits down across from Kurt, massaging the bridge of his nose with his thumb and index finger. "This is so fucked up, man.." He steals a quick glance at the boy in front of him and sighs, guilt gnawing at him once again.
Kurt wants to scream. He wants to just throw back his head, open his mouth, and scream his frustration to the sky. Maybe doing that for an hour (or ten) would relieve some of this unyielding tension and confusion. He takes a shuddering breath and turns his defeated gaze to Todd, suddenly not caring anymore how weak he's being. "I can't do this," he chokes. "I can't just deny it happened, I can't forget. I haven't been able to think of anything else since then. I don't understand the things that are going on in my own head, the only thing I do know is that..." He breaks off and buries his face in his arms, eyes burning.
Todd blinks, his stomach tightening with each word that leaves Kurt's mouth. Granted, Todd has been saying the same things to himself the whole weekend, but to have them out in the open, to have Kurt openly admit these things to him--he doesn't want to hear it, is afraid of what it means, of what it might lead up to. He closes his eyes tightly, trying to block Kurt's voice, but as soon as the other boy stops mid-sentence, he opens them again. "..is that what..?" he whispers without even thinking. He immediately regrets it, doesn't want to hear the answer, but finds himself waiting with bated breath.
Every last fraction of Kurt's common sense tells him to drop it, here and now, before hell opens up under their feet and swallows them both. He can't say it. CAN'T. No way in hell can he do something that reckless and stupid and fuck, Todd can't feel the same way anyway, it's not possible! He just can't...But as much as he can't say it, he doubly can't go on like this. "The only thing I know...is that I don't want to forget."
Todd's stomach drops. He figured that's what was coming, but that didn't make listening to it any easier. It could have a world of meanings behind it and he didn't want to think about any of them, but he latched onto the safest one: pleasure. Who would want to forget about something that felt so good? Doesn't matter who it was with, when, or why--it happened and it felt wonderful. When held in that light, it doesn't seem so terrible. Whether or not this is the actual reason Kurt doesn't want to forget is beside the point; it makes Todd feel better, and, in fact, takes away some of the anxiety he felt for feeling the same way. But he keeps that part to himself. Clearing his throat, he regards Kurt for a few more seconds before responding, softly: "Then.. don't, man. No one can force you to." He bites the inside of his cheek and finally acknowledges the guilt that's been eating at him. "How's your head, yo..? You needa go to the nurse or somethin'?"
"No, it's...it's fine. I think the bleeding's stopped." The response is automatic, coming from one part of Kurt's brain while the rest is trying to interpret Todd's words. 'He doesn't mean...' Not caring how desperate his gaze probably looks, he glances at Todd, searching his face for some clue to what he's feeling, then decides there's only one way to know for sure. "I don't care what everyone is saying, or will be saying if they find out. You're the only one that matters in this. Do you want to deny it all, to just forget it?" His breath catches in his throat as he dreads the answer.
Todd nods, relieved to hear that the wound is no longer bleeding. The feeling doesn't last long, though, before he finds himself between a rock and a hard spot. Why can't Kurt just drop it..? Leaping to his feet, Todd jams his hands in his pockets and nervously fiddles with the material inside, scowling down at the other boy. "WHY does it gotta matter what I think?!" he snaps, harsher than he intended. His voice softens as he begins pacing, eyes trained on the ground. "Lookit, what you think is your business and what I think is mine, dawg. Whatever I wanna do shouldn't affect what you wanna do because--well, it just shouldn't!"
"Shouldn't it?" A mad impulse grips Kurt. He gets unsteadily to his feet, head pounding and stomach turning to ice, and meets Todd's gaze, unflinching. "And if I want..." he almost whispers, leaning close, too close and too slow. His breath catches when he finally makes contact, lips caressing Todd's with infinite care and fear. He closes his eyes and waits for the rage, the blows, the shouting...
Todd can't breathe.. or rather, he's forgotten how to. He stands frozen, muscles stiff, eyes wide, trying to process exactly what's happening, while emotions and thoughts pull him in different directions. He wants to be angry, but he wants to smile; he wants to run away, but he wants to stay right here; he wants to push Kurt away, but he wants to pull him close. It all results in numbness and dumbfounded petrification, his heartbeat echoing in his ears.
Kurt savors the touch, knowing chances are good that this is the last time he'll be able to do this. The expected rebuff doesn't come, though, and he gathers enough nerve to press on, running his tongue lightly along Todd's lip, begging entry. He brings his hands up, one resting on Todd's hip, the other curling against his face and running back into his too-soft hair.
Todd closes his eyes and almost gives in to the kiss.. but breaks away at the last second, half-lidded eyes narrowed at Kurt. He doesn't pull back very far, nor is he yelling or hitting (all things he feels he should be doing), but is merely standing there, searching the other boy's face for some sort of hint as to.. as to.. "Why..?" he whispers.
Kurt's not surprised when Todd breaks the kiss; he was expecting it, of course, but it doesn't help the longing or confusion. The other boy's gaze is searching, and he tries to give him what he's looking for, to let the thousand emotions running through him show in his face and his eyes. He doubts he managed it. His lips are still tingling.
"It...it just feels so right. Don't you feel it?" his voice is pleading.
Todd... feels something, he knows, but he has absolutely no idea what it means. Kurt's lips are terribly inviting, their warmth still lingering on his own lips from seconds before, but.. won't this only lead to more confusion? How can they solve anything when they're going right back to the beginning? Or maybe this is the solution.. running with it and seeing where it goes.. Todd isn't sure; the mere thoughts are enough to send his mind reeling, putting him in a daze as he stares into Kurt's eyes, witnessing a plethora of emotion.
Being so lost in the moment, it takes him a few seconds to register what the ringing bell in the distance means. "Shit," he mutters and tears his gaze away, stepping back to shake himself into reality once again. "Lunch's over."
Kurt curses furiously, rolling his eyes and throwing his hands into the air. "If I didn't know better I'd say God was mocking me," he mutters. He glances at Todd, uncertain. The boy seems torn; Kurt sees what he thinks is want and confusion on his face. Maybe... "Are you busy after school?" he rushes, wanting to get it over with before he loses his nerve or his chance.
Todd blinks, completely taken aback by the question. "Umm.. after school?" He scratches his head thoughtfully, knowing that all he ever does after school is get a ride home from Lance and lounge around the boarding house all day... maybe go out and pickpocket a little or grab a bite to eat... so really, the answer to the question would be no, as he's rarely ever 'busy' in the literal sense. But he isn't quite sure if he wants forgo his little routine to hang out with Kurt. Not alone, anyway. And not with the giant possiblity of them ending up in a tangled heap on the floor somewhere, if that kiss earlier was any indication. "Not sure, yo.. Gotta, um, gotta check with Lance. He might, I dunno, wanna do something later.. or something." Hesitating for a second, he shoves his hands in his pockets again and walks back in the direction they came from, past Kurt without a glance, eyes fixed on the floor. He stops about two feet away, though, and glances over his shoulder. "Um.. call me."
A tiny, wondrous flicker of hope stirs in Kurt's chest. Wrong or not, he's decided the course he wants to take, and having a short-term goal, working these things out and seeing where they lead, is already beginning to clear out the mess of confusion he's been feeling. He doesn't try to hide the smile that spreads across his face. "Yeah. Yeah, I'll call you."
Todd flashes a quick smile in return and crouches down, literally hopping off in the opposite direction. Whoo boy, is he knee-deep in shit. /"Call me," I say. What the fuck am I thinking?/ He makes note to sit on the phone as soon as he gets home, because if someone else answers it... especially Lance... well, damn. Life is just pretty fucked up now, innit.