Disclaimer: I think you know this by now.
Note: Final chapter! Nothing more after this, sorry. Anyhow, thanks for sticking with this story and adding it to Alert/Favorite, if you did.
"I can't believe Lindsay kissed you," Damian crinkled his nose.
"Well, it was directed," Cameron pointed out. "I mean, it's just acting, right?"
"True," Damian said slowly. "But still, did she have to?"
"Why are you getting so worked up about this?" Cameron asked.
"Because…well…I'm…I'm concerned for Hannah," Damian lied.
"…again, it was just acting, and she saw me do it, so it's not like I was fooling around behind her back or anything. Honestly, Damo, you've been really weird ever since you got here. Now, seriously, what's up with you lately?"
"I just…you know…get worried about you and Hannah sometimes," Damian lied quickly again. "I'm planning on being your best man at the wedding…don't want things to go wrong between now and then..."
"Who said you were going to be the best man?" Cameron deadpanned. "Kidding, of course you would be, if Hannah and I ever do get married."
"What? Of course you are," Damian found a sudden fascination with his jeans. "I mean, you've been meant for each other ever since you met."
"True," Cameron lay back. "What do you think? If I win this, should I propose?"
Damian felt as if he'd been punched in the gut. "Yeah," he mumbled.
"Seriously?" Cameron raised his blonde brows. "You think so?"
"Sure," Damian picked at a loose thread on the sheets. "Why not?"
Cameron rolled over and climbed over so that he was practically on top of Damian. "Damian Joseph McGinty," he said in a low voice. "I want you to tell me what's going on in that little head of yours, and I want you to tell me right now."
"Or what?" Damian narrowed his eyes in a challenge.
"I'll tickle you," Cameron threatened.
"You wouldn't dare," Damian gritted his teeth.
"Oh, I would," Cameron moved his hands to Damian's side, where he knew the boy was the most ticklish. "Tell me, or I tickle."
"So, Cameron," Alex walked into the room. "Oh," his hand flew to his mouth upon seeing Cameron on top of the smaller boy. "Sorry! I'll leave you two alone." He ran out the door, giggling and no doubt telling the girls what he'd just seen.
"Alex!" Damian called after him. "This isn't what it looks like!"
"Oh, he's harmless," Cameron got up. "But I will find out why you've been acting so strange lately, Damian, so help me I will!"
"So, um, why was Cameron on top of you?" Marissa asked him the next day as they were rehearsing for their next homework challenge.
Damian rolled his eyes. "That Alex sure likes to gossip. Cameron thought I was holding a secret from him so he resorted to threats of tickle torture."
Marissa flinched. "Ooh, that's the worst type of torture."
"Especially for me," Damian laughed. "I'm really ticklish, and Cameron knows it!"
She smiled. "You and Cameron seem really know each other very well."
"Yep," Damian said. "I know everything about him."
Next Few Days
"I never," Cameron's teeth were chattering, "ever want to see a Slushee again. Ever."
"Come on, it wasn't that bad," Hannah laughed. "It was actually kind of…fun!"
"Yeah, you're just being a drama king," Damian rolled his eyes. "And that's my job."
"Yeah, New England winters are colder and longer than that," Alex spoke up.
"He's just a big baby," Marissa teased. "Must be that pale, pale skin."
"Seriously," Cameron shivered. "How are you guys not cold?"
They all shrugged. "It's just you," Lindsay said. "Even for me, it wasn't that bad."
"You might be in the bottom three for that attitude," Samuel pointed out. "So if I were you, I'd quit complaining right now."
Sure enough, Cameron was in the bottom three with Alex, and much to his surprise, Marissa. She had won the homework challenge that week, so Cameron was positive she would be safe. He sized up his competition; he could maybe beat out Alex, but definitely not Marissa. And yet, he prepped to do his best, and luckily for him, they were all allowed to sing their audition songs, and it was one that Cameron had written himself, so he knew it well and how to sell it. Still, he crossed his fingers as he went to go look at the callback list, hoping he wouldn't fall into the reality show "rule of three", this being his third time in the bottom. He was stunned when he saw that Marissa had been eliminated.
"I am so sorry," he hugged her.
"It's not your fault," she shrugged. "I guess you out-performed me tonight."
"We haven't seen the last of you," he rubbed her back comfortingly.
Can this get any harder? Damian thought to himself as he said goodbye to her.
In a word, yes.
"Sexuality," Hannah groaned. "Aw man, I was dreading this!"
"Oh sweet Jesus," Damian's eyes widened in fear. What if I get paired with Cameron?
He awkwardly stumbled his way through the "Like a Virgin" homework challenge, finding himself avoiding Cameron at all costs and focusing on Hannah, who he knew he could work easily with. He crossed his fingers when they were all paired up for the main challenge that week, hoping he would be with Cameron, but praying avidly that he wouldn't be. He sighed and rolled his eyes when he found that he had to work with Lindsay.
"What, do you not want to work with me?" She blinked her big blue eyes at him.
"Not really, no," he said bluntly. "You annoy me like a mosquito."
"Well, I never," she huffed and stomped off to the other side of the room.
"Wow," Samuel raised his brows. "Never thought you'd actually tell her what we've all been thinking this whole time."
"She's been pestering me since kindergarten," Damian said. "It was about time."
"And now you have to work with her and be 'sexual' with her," Samuel shook his head, dreadlocks flying behind him. "Tough break, kid."
"I'll just picture someone else in her place and it'll work out," Damian shrugged.
Samuel bit his tongue to keep from laughing; he knew of Damian's blatantly-obvious-to-everyone-but-Cameron crush on the blonde competitor. He said nothing, though, and wandered off to work with Alex on their scenario.
A few days later
"Jesus," Damian closed his eyes as he caught sight of Lindsay in her cheerleading uniform for their part of the video. "Tell me this isn't happening."
"Oh just suck it up and work with me," she tossed her hair over her shoulder. Damian shuddered and did so. He attempted to picture her as Cameron, but got kind of skeeved at the thought of Cameron in a cheerleading outfit. He knew he'd have to kiss her in the end, and he did so, though unwillingly. She tasted sweet, like bubble-gum flavored lip gloss. If I were kissing Cameron, Damian thought, he wouldn't taste like this at all. He sullenly returned to the greenroom where the other contestants were waiting.
"Is that lip gloss?" Alex smirked.
"Oh. Yeah," Damian rubbed it off.
"You kissed? Shut up!" Hannah laughed. Cameron's face fell, his eyes growing dark. Lindsay kissed him! Wait, why do I care about this so much? All of a sudden, he felt as if he'd been punched in the gut. Lindsay stole his first kiss! That shouldn't have been her!
"You look like you just got hit by a truck," Alex said to him.
"What's the matter?" Hannah turned to him, worry in her green eyes.
Right, Hannah. I'm dating Hannah. "I just…I can't believe she kissed him." He shifted in his chair and glared at Lindsay. "You do know that was his first kiss, right?"
"What? No," Lindsay looked at Damian. "You didn't tell me."
"Thanks a lot, Robert," Damian hissed.
"Robert?" Alex, Samuel, and Lindsay said in unison.
"Long story," Hannah rolled her eyes.
"Was it really your first kiss?" Lindsay frowned. "I'm sorry. You should've told me."
"No thanks to Robert's little outburst, yes, it was, and now you all know." Damian stood up and folded his arms across his chest.
"Stop. Calling. Me. Robert," Cameron got up and stood toe-to-toe with Damian. "You know I haven't gone by that name since first grade, and you didn't even know me then."
"You had to admit on national television that I just had my first kiss with a girl I can't stand? Way to be my best friend," Damian flipped Cameron off and stormed out of the room, leaving three stunned and confused faces sitting on the floor.
"Oh God," Hannah paled. "Oh, no…" She got up and quickly hurried after Damian, worrying greatly for her dear friend. "Damian, wait!"
"How could he?" Damian spat, pacing furiously back and forth. "How could he?"
"He was just trying to protect you from getting your feelings hurt," Hannah said softly, touching his arm gently and trying to calm him down.
"Why does he care if I kissed Lindsay? 'It's just acting', he said about his own kiss with her not even two weeks ago! 'It was nothing', he said. So why, when the roles are reversed, does he freak the hell out and go off on her? Shouldn't he have gone off on her for kissing him when she knows damn well that he's in a serious relationship?" Damian was shaking with fury. "Forget it. I'm not telling him how I feel. Not now, not ever."
"I…" Hannah started to say, but was cut off by being called to the set. "We'll talk later," she whispered, rushing off to shoot her scene. It should have been an easy video shoot for the both of them. Hannah gave it her all, but she noticed that Cameron was distracted, not really paying attention to what he was doing and for some reason not looking her in the eyes. She shook it off, focusing on herself and what she was doing. She wasn't about to be in the bottom three, not now, when half would be safe and half would not. She was thankful when she, Samuel, and Lindsay were declared safe, but again worried about Damian and Cameron as they wound up in the bottom three together again. Hannah didn't want Alex to go home, but with Damian in this seemingly fragile state of mind and Cameron suddenly acting distant and out of character, she was concerned that one of them might throw the competition.
"I don't want to be here anymore," Cameron was saying to the judges.
"What? Why? Are you giving up?" Ryan Murphy stared him down.
"I just…" Cameron gripped the microphone stand. "Damian wants this more than I do. He really does. I mean, he has a great career to fall back on, but he really wants this. Acting, it isn't for me. Music is, but not acting, not television. And Hannah," he sighed. "She wants this so badly, too. So does Lindsay, and so do Alex and Samuel. Maybe I should just…let them have their chance." He looked down at his shoe. "Look, I have a feeling that you're going to send Damian home tonight. Please don't. Send me home instead. He deserves this much, much more than I do." He took a deep breath. "When we were growing up," he explained, "it always seemed as if I paid more attention to Hannah than I ever did to him, especially after Hannah and I started dating. Hannah, bless her, paid attention to him enough for the both of us, but it wasn't enough. It was always about me, or about Hannah. And I'm done with that. I want this to be about him, not me."
"So you're sacrificing a recording contract and a guest-starring television role for…Damian," Ryan said slowly, trying to comprehend this.
"Yes," Cameron said definitively. "I'm asking you to please send me home tonight."
"Very well, Cameron," Ryan sighed. "It's a shame. I would've liked to write for you."
"Thank you for understanding," Cameron bowed out and left the stage in tears. He knew full well the consequences of what he'd just done, but after the revelation he'd made yesterday, he knew what he had done was right. Numbly, he shuffled back to the common room area. "I quit," he announced.
"What?" Hannah stood up. "Cam…"
"No," Alex shook his head. "For me and Damian?"
"Why?" Lindsay managed to get out through her shock.
"I can't really explain why," Cameron looked directly at Damian, who had his head in his knees, but looked up at the sound of Cam's voice. "But it was a personal choice."
"I'm so sorry," Damian stood up. "I'm so sorry, Cameron."
"Not your fault," Cameron smiled wanly before packing his bags and leaving the competition forever. Damian ran out into the hall to check the callback list to make sure that what he was hearing was true. He gasped when he saw his name under "Not Called Back", crossed out in red pen with Cameron's name written underneath in Cameron's own handwriting. He quit for me.
Damian and Hannah moved through the next week wordlessly. Hannah wouldn't—or rather, couldn't—tell Damian, but Cameron had left a note under her pillow before he had left two days before.
I'm so sorry to leave you, and Damian. But something inside me changed after I saw that Damian and Lindsay had kissed. I can't explain it, but I just felt something different. I think we should let Damian have his chance in the limelight for once. I feel so guilty for always paying attention to you and not enough to him. I'm letting him have his chance. I'm not saying you should throw the competition for him, too, but…anyway, Hannah, just know that I do love you and I can't wait for you to come home again. Texas misses you, darling. Give Damian some space; don't let him know about this letter.
All my love,
She'd concealed the note in her bag where she knew Damian couldn't find it. She knew that Cameron was discovering that he had feelings for Damian, too, feelings that had been buried for years and were just now surfacing. She sighed; if she went home this week, she'd head to Texas and break up with Cameron. It was only right, and if Damian won, then the secret would be revealed anyway, and they could finally be together. She attempted to act as if she was in love with Alex for the video that week, but was distracted by the thousands of thoughts that swirled her head. Therefore, she found herself in the bottom three. While at first excited to be singing one of her favorite songs—and that Damian had miraculously avoided the bottom group—she sized up her competition (Lindsay and Samuel), and knew this would be the week she'd get eliminated. While she tried her best to sing the song, she knew immediately that she was about to get out-performed, and she was consequently eliminated.
"Han," Damian hugged her tightly, the first real contact they'd made all week.
"Oh, Damo," she murmured. "I'm so sorry to leave you here alone." She slipped something into his back pocket, which he didn't notice until that night, when he was changing into sweatpants for bed.
I'm going back to Texas to take care of things with Cameron. I wish you the best of luck in the rest of the competition and pray that you win this for both of us. I love you, and I'll talk to you soon.
Your sister in spirit,
"Take care of things?" Damian muttered to himself. "What does she mean?"
"Did you say something?" Alex turned to look at him.
"No," Damian folded the note and put it back away. "No, I didn't." He crawled into bed, not wanting to chat with Alex or Samuel, and slept. Whenever he wasn't practicing for an assignment or doing something with the other competitors, he slept. He almost didn't want to go on without Hannah by his side, encouraging him every step of the way. With the shock of all four of them being in the finale out of the way, he buckled down and focused on the task ahead. He wanted to win.
As they were performing their final homework assignment, Ryan Murphy cut them short.
"I think you need a little help," he said, heading to open the door to the room. Lindsay's mouth fell open as the eliminated contestants came running in.
"Hannah!" Damian tackled her as if he hadn't seen her in months.
"We need to talk," she mumbled in his ear.
"What about?" He furrowed his brow in concern. "Are you okay?"
"I'm fine," she smiled sadly. "I just…need to tell you something."
"Later," he nodded. "Where's Cameron?"
"Right here," a voice from behind him said. The brunette whirled around, nearly tripping over Cameron's feet. "Hello," Cameron laughed.
"CAMERON!" Damian yelled, practically knocking him down.
"Easy. I'm right here," Cameron smirked. "Now go out there and kick it, okay?" They were all thrilled to hear that everyone would be in the video that week.
"Okay," Damian went into another room with his girl. "What did you want to tell me, Hannah?"
"I broke up with Cameron," she said.
"What?" Damian nearly fell off his chair. "But…but…but why?"
"Because," Hannah sat down next to him. "He has feelings for someone else, feelings that just came around."
"He didn't cheat on you, did he?" Damian's eyes darkened. "Because if he did, I'll bloody kill him for hurting you."
"No, he did nothing like that," Hannah reassured him. "I think our relationship just ran its course, to be honest. After all, we dated for almost six years."
"But…but he said he was going to propose to you if he won!" Damian blurted out, immediately clapping a hand over his mouth. "Oh, bugger…"
"Wait, what?" Hannah did a double-take. "He was going to propose?"
"Yes," Damian mumbled. "Well, if he won, anyway. Otherwise he was gonna do it on your anniversary."
"Oh my God," Hannah slumped in her seat. "I…never mind that right now. He handled it well, at any rate."
"So who's the other girl?" Damian dared to ask. "Is it Lindsay? Please tell me it isn't."
"It's definitely not Lindsay," Hannah laughed. "He said he'll tell you if you win."
"Well then, this conversation is over," Damian said getting up. "I have a last-chance performance to perfect!"
A few days later
"Damian, you have also won The Glee Project."
"Ahh! Ahh! Ahh!" Damian began to scream and jump all over the stage. "Oh my God!" He effectively tackled Sam, who was also screaming at his own win. I have to tell him, the back of his mind was saying to him. I have to tell Cameron now. He waited until later that night at the after-party. "Can I talk to you, please?"
"Yeah of course, anything for you, Damo," Cameron followed him into a corner of the room. "What's up? I still can't believe you won, man! Well, I can believe it, but still!"
"I made myself a promise to tell you something important if, and only if, I won this thing," Damian told him. "Remember how you kept thinking something was wrong with me, but I wouldn't tell you?"
"Of course," Cameron's facial expression changed. "What is it?"
Damian took a deep breath and lowered his voice. "I've been in love with you since about the fifth grade," he admitted at long last. "Hannah's known ever since then, and she's been keeping it a secret for me."
"I…Damian, wow," Cameron whistled. "I must say, I wasn't expecting that."
"Please tell me you love me," Damian reached down for Cameron's hand. "Please…say you love me, too. You've never said it to me, not once."
"I did say it to Hannah an awful lot, didn't I?" Cameron looked guilty. "I'm sorry. And I do love you, Damian."
Damian's heart beat rapidly in his chest. "In what way?"
"Up until about a month ago, my feelings towards you were that of a devoted and loyal older brother," Cameron said. "But then something changed. When I saw that you and Lindsay had kissed, it was like someone had kicked me in the stomach, hard. I didn't know what it meant until I really thought about it." He took Damian's other hand in his own and squeezed it. "I guess I've had other feelings for you, buried way deep inside, because I thought since Hannah and I had been childhood best friends, we were meant to date, we were supposed to date. So I hid anything I might have been feeling for you, and I'm genuinely sorry about that. Can you forgive me?"
"Of course I can," Damian murmured. "But…are you saying that…?"
"Yes, yes, I am," Cameron leaned in and kissed Damian sweetly, lingering for a moment. "There," he pulled back. "That should've been your real first kiss."
"Look!" Lindsay poked Hannah. "Cameron just kissed Damian!"
"Oh, finally," Hannah said. "Damian's been waiting for that since he was about ten."
"Please tell me someone got that on camera," Marissa sighed happily. "It's too cute."
"I did," Samuel grinned. "The whole thing."
"They were always meant to be," Hannah murmured, "and so finally they are."
Damian and Cameron dated for three years before Cameron proposed. Hannah was Damian's "Maid of Honor", and all of the Glee Project cast members, as well as some Glee cast members, were in attendance at the wedding. A few years after they got married, Damian and Cameron adopted a daughter, named Lilly. Hannah was the Godmother. Damian and Cameron were both Godfathers to Hannah's twin sons, Keith and Connor. They were all best friends until the day they died, one day apart from each other, because none of them could live without each other.