Story: Prom: Were the World Mine (Song fic)

Fandom: Glee
Author: ibshafer
Rating: PG
Character: Dave, Kurt (one-sided Kurtofsky)

Disclaimer: I don't own these people, they own themselves and are just nice enough to let me spin them around the page now and then.

Summary: Prom time: A cruel joke sees Kurt crowned Prom Queen, to David's Prom King, and rather than let the bastards win, Kurt rocks the moment with a little help, not from his boyfriend, but from his suddenly emboldened King

Warning: Spoilers for PQ… (Some speculative)

Length: 5,093 words

A/N #1: The song/movie wasjust too perfect to pass up and I couldn't rest until I found some way to use it for Kurt and Dave. A ton of thanks go to eowyn_rain for brainstorming the idea with me – and tweaking it into much better shape than I could have. You are, as they say, the bomb, my dear! I can't thank you enough!

A/N #2: In this story, Blaine is just Kurt's date for the prom; I've chosen not to deal with that whole Blaine-sings-with-the-band element because it just made things too complicated… Mea culpa, eh?

A/N #3: To really get the full effect of this song fic, make sure you watch the video below. The song, "Were the World Mine" from the movie of the same name, is pure Shakespearean (musical) magic. And if you haven't seen the movie itself, give yourself a happy and rent it. You will shiver with fangirly delite…

http colon slash slash www dot youtube dot com slash watch questionmark v equal sign 9y1w0rwUHTs amperstan feature equal sign player underscore embedded

Were the World Mine © 2008 Tom Gustafson & Cory James Krueckeberg

A/N #4: See my Glee fic archive http colon slash slash ibshafer dot livejournal dot com slash 40281 dot html (Check latest journal entry for most recent updates.)

Prom: Were the World Mine


He hadn't expected to feel this way.

He knew it was all fake – the tux Santana had picked out for him (that he totally rocked, btw), the flowers she'd described in great detail and then told him to order (so that anyone observing would only see him as the thoughtful boyfriend), the posed picture of the happy couple (because that's what you did at the prom).

Seriously, though, all of that fake – the pomp, as they say, and the circumstance – was starting to get to him.

He couldn't remember the last time he'd felt this, well, this good…

Not like he was hiding something…

Not like he was thinking of ways to get someone alone later on like all the other prom-goers – someone other than his 'girl'

Not like for all the pretense of 'normal' they had piled on themselves tonight, normal was the last thing they were…

For the week prior to the prom, and maybe the first thirty minutes of it, Dave Karofsky had actually felt like a normal high school kid; the big-time jock dating the hottest girl in school, on his way to being crowned Prom King beside her.

To say he hadn't expected to feel this happy would be a true statement.

He would look at the picture the photographer had taken of them under that big lighted star with the Pepto-colored curtain behind them, the extreme cheesiness of the moment somehow transformed by how very hot they actually looked together, and think that that was what normal looked like, what straight looked like, what happy looked like; that the illusion, despite the cheesiness of the moment, was so real, he found himself believing it…

And then he would remember how all of that had changed.

What he had expected, what he'd hoped to not feel, was, sadly, exactly what he did feel – at precisely seven-thirty.

At precisely seven-thirty, he suddenly experienced an awful, clenching sensation in the center of his chest that radiated outwards, and that coincided with the arrival of Kurt Hummel.

Kurt Hummel…

Kurt Hummel looking not as silly as Dave might have expected in what Dave wanted to call a skirt, but which he knew, because he had Braveheart committed to memory, was actually a kilt.

His entrance into the gym set off a round of laughter, some squealing and gleeful (from his geeky entourage), some snickering and spiteful (from the assholes Dave used to call his friends), and it caused Dave's heart to speed up dangerously, sending way too much blood to his face – and sadly little of it to his brain...

Fuck, just look at him.

For the life of him, Dave couldn't figure out why Hummel insisted on doing that. Why did he have to make such an entrance,coming late so that all eyes were on himwhen he walked in? When you've already got a big target on your back, shit, forget your back, when you're entire body is a big, swishy pink target, why would you draw so much attention to yourself?

It was pure Hummel, though. He couldn't just walk into a room; he had to make a statement.

Dave couldn't decide whether to cringe at his stupidity – or be awed by his bravery.

Hummel didn't care what people thought of him. More accurately, he didn't care if they liked him or not – he was going to do what he wanted whether they fucking liked it or not…

And as much as Dave fought it, as much as he wanted to fight it, he just couldn't keep his eyes off of him.

Why is he doingthis to me?

Dave was starting to think that Hummel's statement tonight was less for the jocks (and the jerks) and more for Dave himself…

As if to say, 'See this? This is what it means to be Gay, David. This is what it means to be Out. You will never feel as comfortable in your skin as I do right now in mine.'

And Dave was torn.

Torn between wanting to just ignore Hummel's obvious plea for attention…and wanting to walk right up to him and tell him to cut it the fuck out already, to stop being such a little bitch with all this 'Dave, you're gay' crap and just leave him alone.

Looking at Hummel right now, more than just Dave's hands were itching – his whole body itched – but he hadto leave Hummel alone, tonight more than ever.

Between Hummel's bodyguards, (Frankenteen and Puckerman at the ready, Evans glaring at him from behind his fucking Bieber-bangs), Dave's own jock buddies, (who would be more than happy to tear him a new one if they knew what a crock this whole soul mates/couple thing with Lopez was), and then that annoying little yappy dog Hummel called his boyfriend, it was like everyone there was just watching him, waiting for him to fuck up…


But as Dave was becoming painfully aware, it was possible to be torn in more than two directions at once.

Look at him…

Amongst his friends now, Hummel spun on his heel, the flutter of that damn skirtfucking hypnotic, and Dave felt his heart flip in his chest, the blood rushing back into his cheeks to damn him. With a shallow gasp he was hoping wasn't audible, he moved a step closer to Santana, found her hand and gripped it tightly, muscling a plastic smile onto his flushed face.

How can he expect me to leave him alone and treat him like he's just another kid here, when he…when he looks like that?

To her credit, Santana just leaned against him and squeezed his hand tightly in hers, clearly sensing how difficult Kurt's arrival had been for Dave and as much as he wanted to pull her aside and tell her it wasn't what she thought, he just didn't have the energy to lie anymore…

God, all I want to do is drag him and that kilt into the locker room and pick up where we left off last fall…

He braced himself for the internal argument – the voice of reason sounding like a pathetic, whiny five-year old in the face of the gale force fury that was his heart – and he gritted his teeth against the shouting match that was to come.

It doesn't matter what I want. It doesn't matter what I do…

Santana was fighting her own demons at the moment, in need of her own distraction (it hadn't been hard to figure out who her weakness was in that crowd), and when the gleeks finally surrounded Kurt, obscuring him from their view, she dragged Dave bodily over to the steam table, directing him to put tiny meatballs, cold shrimp, and chunks of cheese and bread onto a plate for them to share. He was grateful for the diversion, grateful to have something Hummel-free to do.

The food filled the empty spaces inside him, driving out the confusion, recharging his batteries, silencing the voices.

As they ate, they talked about nothing; the gym and the decorations, the music and the food, the other couples and their chances of winning tonight.

Dave suspected she hadn't painted the most accurate picture for him when she'd laid out her proposal, but it wasn't like she'd really given him a choice. And really, did it matter? He'd been 'ruling the school' since his last growth spurt had put him at the top of the McKinley food chain two years ago; being crowned Prom King would only make it official. Whatever the reason, it was fine with him.

Pretty soon she was pulling him onto the dance floor and as much as he hated to dance, he knew it was part of the act, so he went along with it. Truth was, it wasn't awful, it was actually kind of fun. Devoid of the pressure he usually felt from his dance partners, the expectation of something romantic, the will-we, won't-we bob-and-weave, he was free to just feel the music and listen to Santana talk about how great it was going to be when they won.

It was looking like prom wouldn't be the big ordeal he'd expected.

Hummel and his hobbit were steering clear of them and he was trying his damndest not to look for him, only realizing that he'd forgotten once or twice when his jaw and chest clenched reflexively. He'd look away quickly, but not quickly enough to miss catching them kissing as they danced, or talking softly as they huddled close together at a table.

Ever the eagle-eye, Santana would hiss in his ear, or step on his foot, or, taking the lead, change Dave's view by spinning them away.

For the rest of the prom, as much as he tried to distract himself with dance and food, making stupid jokes with his buddies about 'that fag in the skirt,' as much as he tried to keep himself from thinking, from letting his head get filled up with 'what ifs,' as the night wore on…the 'what ifs' won out.

What if he were strong enough?

What if he were brave enough?

What if he stood up on that stage tonight and told everybody who Dave Karofsky really was?

He watched them, Hummel and his boyfriend, holding hands, laughing at something one had whispered in the other's ear, and he just couldn't believe they could do something that he couldn't.

How could a couple of little girly boys have the stones to not give a fuck what anyone else thought? They looked like a good stiff breeze would blow them away, like a sudden jump in humidity would send them running for the boys' room to check their hair.

How could they be stronger than him?


It was at was times like these, when he saw how Hummel lived his life, defiant even in the face of the Fury, in the face of Dave's stupid name for his stupid right hand, that Dave felt every bit the major shit that he was.

He felt shame.

He felt anger – at himself.

More than that, he felt like Hummel, without meaning to, was telling Dave something just in the way he lived his life.

'You can have this, too, David,' Hummel's life said. 'You can be free. You can be happy.' A burst of high-pitched laughter broke out on the other side of the gym and Dave looked over to find his tormentor at the center of it, surrounded by his fans, all laughing along with him.

'You could have had me, David, if you hadn't been such a coward…'

That one hurt the worst because he knew it was true.

So…so, say he hadn't had his head in his ass? Say he had been strong enough to deal with and accept what he was feeling?

Maybe he would have picked on Hummel a little bit, but instead of locker slams and Slushies, it would have been more like in those old black and white movies where the little boy would dip the little girl's pigtails in the ink well because he liked her. He was so beautiful, Dave wouldn't have been able to stay away from him, wouldn't have been able to not look at him, not talk to him, not touch him, not want him.

Head-Out-of-His-Ass Dave might not have pushed Hummel around, but he probably would have annoyed the crap out of him anyway just so he could be near him, enough that eventually Hummel would have gotten fed up and chased after him, chased him into the locker room, trying to get him to stop …

And then…and then Dave would have looked Hummel in the eye and somehow made him see what Dave was thinking, what he was really thinking, and when Dave leaned in to kiss Hummel in the locker room that day, he wouldn't have been as rough about it because he wouldn't have been as freaked about it; he would have taken his time and savored every second, not pulling away until he was sure Kurt understood how Dave felt, not pulling away until he was sure Kurt felt the same way

The same way…

When Figgins' voice cut through Dave's reverie and announced it was time to crown Prom King and Queen, Dave couldn't be sure if he was relieved or disappointed to have had those thoughts interrupted.

A moment later, he was standing up there on that stage next to Principal Figgins and all he could think about was the way the crowd was cheering for him and how silly, how tissue-paper thin, all those thoughts seemed in retrospect. He wasn't gay. What had he been thinking? This – this was who he was. Someone people loved. Someone people respected. Someone people voted for… There was a huge giddy smile on Santana's face as she hastily fussed with her hair in preparation for her own ascension to the stage, and a look of utter shock on the gleeks' faces, but the best one of all was the one Hummel wore; his shocked expression spoke of disbelief, that anyone could even like Dave, let alone vote for him, and the triumph Dave felt in that moment, the 'See, Fancy? You're wrong about me' of it was pure win.

He soaked it all in – his moment of triumph in front of the cheering crowd, the resounding validation of who he was, the solemn belief that he could be anyone he wanted to be – and he felt all the self-doubt evaporate like summer rain on hot pavement.

The world was his for the making and nothing Hummel could do or say could change that…

For the moment, he contained that giddy feeling in his chest and prepared himself for Santana's imminent arrival on the stage.

Any minute now…

Later on, Dave would remember seeing that fuckwad Taylor snickering in the corner, seeing Azimio and a few others looking way more excited than they should have been, but just then, in the moment, all he could do was hold his breath as Figgins read out the name of this year's Prom Queen…

What—what the…

Suddenly, the music and the fanfare died down to total silence and everyone stood dumbstruck, too shocked to react at first.

Santana hadn'twon Prom Queen.

Nor had Fabray or Zizes or any of the other girls he might have expected.

When Figgins opened that envelope, his face had gone blank, and it must have been his own shock that put him into autopilot just then, moving his lips, making him read the name that was written there aloud, because as useless as he was as a principal, the last thing Figgins was was cruel.

Kurt Hummel.

Kurt Hummel had been elected Prom Queen.

Some asshat on the spot light, Dave was sure it was Taylor, swung the beam of light around to Kurt, to where he stood in the center of the dance floor, white as a sheet, eyes wide, his face a mix of shock, betrayal, and a hurt so painful Dave was surprised he was still standing.

At first, no one said a word, no one moved, but then a hand reached out and shoved Kurt a step toward the stage and a low voice snickered "faggot!" from the shadows ten feet away.

The silence broken, the gym erupted into a nervous mix of laughter and murmured talk. Kurt's friends surrounded him, alternately consoling him and glaring angrily at the crowd. His boyfriend stood red-faced, mouth a grimace, ready to take on anyone who came near Kurt. Dave saw him reach for Kurt's hand where it hung limp at his side, lost in the folds of his kilt, and take it into his own, but to none of this, not his boyfriend's touch nor his friend's words, did Kurt react.

Instead, he pulled himself defiantly away and began walking slowly toward the stage, unmoved by his friend's worried cries, the hushed muttering of the crowd, or the smattering of nervous laughter that followed after him.

As he drew closer to the stage, Dave could see that despite his seeming calm, his typical in-your-face self-possession, Kurt was struggling to maintain his composure; his left hand, held to his chest and clenched in a tight fist, trembled slightly, but from this angle, Dave was sure he and Figgins were the only ones who could see it. To the prom-goers, those innocent and those responsible, Kurt Hummel was a study in control, but Dave knew better, saw the way that hand still shook, the way those normally clear eyes fought to remain steady.

Dave was so angry right now he wanted to scream! He wanted to jump off that stage and grab the first douche bag he found and break him. That someone could do something like this to another person. That they would go to such lengths to hurt him. That…that a year ago, under different circumstances, he…he would have been one of those people…

There wasn't time for Dave to hate himself right now, though. Right now there was only Kurt poised on the stage for…for something.

What is he doing?

Dave's own hands were clenched at his sides, jaw tight, teeth grit, and he silently willed Kurt to look at him, to see Dave's anger and empathy, the implicit support, the show of strength.

And Kurt did.

Kurt stared at him for a moment and Dave could read the wash of emotion just beneath the pale skin. He wondered what would float to the surface first: the anger?; the hurt?; the justifiable disgust at what they'd done to him?

As it turns out, it was none of these.

Dave watched as relief flooded Kurt's angular face and he did something Dave would never have believed possible – not to him, not under these circumstances.

Holding Dave's gaze steadily, Kurt smiled. It was just at the corners, just a hint, but it was enough, enough to reassure Dave that Kurt wasn't the wounded bird they wanted him to be. That the fighter in him hadn't given up. That if anyone was going to get the last word here, it was going to be him. And if that wasn't enough, the next thing he did, brought that message home.

As if to say 'Watch and learn, David,' Kurt winked at him.

Dave wanted to laugh out loud, but Kurt's sharply raised eyebrow told him to contain himself, that this wasn't over by a long shot, so Dave bit his tongue, let some of the tension in his aching hands relax, and watched.

Figgins had finally regained some of his sense and was gamely attempting to admonish and calm the crowd when Kurt put a hand on his arm and gently guided him away from the microphone.

Settling himself back in front of it now, Kurt cleared his throat loudly, tapping it once to test the sound or, Dave suspected, to make sure they were all listening. The crowd murmur died back to silence and as one, friend and foe alike, stood, mouths agape, awaiting Kurt's response to this monstrous thing that had been done to him.

Someone in the back, safe in a shadowed corner, barked out the word "homo!" but the crowd instantly hissed him into silence.

Expression coolly defiant, Kurt raised the microphone higher, opened his mouth, and sang.

"I see their knavery," he began, clear voice smooth as silk. "This is to make an ass of me, to fright me - if they could..." Eyebrow raised in challenge, he let the rich sound of it ring through the gymnasium, the rafters and floating balloons passing the echo, like laughter, back and forth between them, and the crowd, whether spellbound by the sound of his voice or in disbelief at his audacity, merely stared at him, open-mouthed. "But I will not stir from this place – do what they can, I will work up and down here…"

This wasn't the first time Dave had heard Kurt sing, but it was the first time Kurt's voice had made him shiver; he had never heard a human being make a sound like that before. The effect Kurt's voice was having on Dave – giddy laughter once again welling up inside him – was compounded by Dave's surprising familiarity with the song itself. As impossible as it may have seemed, owed entirely to Dave's last minute preparations for a Shakespeare exam last fall (which led to his grateful discovery of a movie about the play he was supposed to have read…and his subsequent and inexplicable obsession with its accompanying soundtrack album), Dave already knew this song.

Dave knew this song well.

"And I will sing that they shall hear." As Kurt slid down that third, eliding smoothly back up into the next note, Dave couldn't stop himself from grinning, Kurt's voice, his energy, infectious. "That I am not, I am not afraid, I am not afraid!" Both hands on the microphone now, Kurt stared the lot of them down, defiance in his posture, his eyes, his voice.

Someone in the crowd, probably Mercedes, whooped with glee and Dave almost joined her. By now, the band was catching on, backing Kurt with softly ticking percussion and simple harmonics. Dave could see the audience – because that's what they were now, an audience – beginning to move with the music and though the joke's perpetrators were still out there, (no one had left the gym since Kurt had begun to sing), they all seemed spellbound by what they were hearing.

It was like that old saying Dave had heard, the one about music being able to soothe the savage beast (or something like to that); Kurt had gone onto that stage an object of ridicule and now, simply from the power of his voice and the passion in his soul, they were listening. No one was screaming things at him, no one was throwing things at him. And while it would be naïve to think that the jocks and the jerks were now just going to accept Kurt Hummel's presence – and the non-conformity, the gayness, that presence represented – it was clear he had earned himself respect just for walking onto that stage; the fact that he actually had talent and beyond that, that he had amazing talent, only brought him more credibility. The moment he opened his mouth to sing, he owned them, even if it was just for the duration of the song.

As Dave listened, he thought back over the lesson he imagined Kurt was giving him and the one he thought Kurt's life was trying to impress on him; Kurt was a lead-by-example kind of guy (and that kind of gay, too, really), and though an hour ago, he wouldn't have thought that he was…that he was ready, the utter bravery of this thin, pale, beautiful boy, had both shamed him and bolstered him, shown him what he could be, who he could be, if he only had the courage.

Standing there next to Figgins, humming the lilting tune of the song along with Kurt, he saw the audience moving and more than that, he saw The Boyfriend moving – moving closer to the stage.

This song was, after all, a duet…

And though it would have seemed crazy an hour ago, and though he would never have agreed to it if he'd been asked, here he was, and the music was calling him, and it was like this was his moment, too. Not just to admit to the world, or at least, to the little corner of it that McKinley was sitting on, who he was, that he, David Karofsky, was…was gay…, but that the reason all of this started, with him and Kurt and the locker slams and the Slushies and the freaking cake topper that he still had and the Bully Whips and the whole fake dating thing…all of it, all of it¸ had started because…because Dave Karofsky had feelings for Kurt Hummel.

And he couldn't stop himself any more, didn't want to, didn't know how to.

And as Kurt was finishing the verse that began with "Oh I rebuke, you handle of yourself," the verse that made Dave almost cry when he heard it on the soundtrack because it was so beautiful, the one that did make him cry now a little bit, because Kurt's voice was so beautiful, Dave stepped closer to the microphone and though he could see The Boyfriend opening his mouth to sing, Dave had the power of the microphone (and the speakers) in his favor.

And another thing – Dave could sing, too.

Kurt had been looking into the audience, looking to his boy, to take up the verse that followed, but when he felt Dave's presence so close, he looked over at him in mild surprise, and when Dave dipped his head toward the mike, Kurt's eyebrows flew up and his smile was both appraising and proud. With a barely perceptible flourish, he ceded the mike to Dave. (Dave registered The Boyfriend's mild diva displeasure with great satisfaction…)

Tentatively grabbing the microphone stand, Dave took a deep breath, looked out into the audience, at the gaping mouths and shocked expressions on every single face there, and almost lost his nerve… And then he heard Kurt's whispered "David" beside him, and stepping back again he closed his eyes…

"What angel wakes me from my flowery bed?" Dave began, his voice faltering for the briefest moment when someone in the back, probably Azimio, laughed, but when the laughter was met with silence, so shocked were they all, Dave was able to continue. His eyes were still closed and without the distraction of his classmates' faces, he was able to settle into the verse quickly, the thrill of showing them all, of showing Kurt, a thing they'd never known about him, that Dave Karofsky could sing, breathing strength into his voice, deepening his tones, powering the high notes as well as the low. "I pray thee gentle mortal sing again – I pray thee gentle mortal sing, again."

He felt Kurt move closer to him, as though sensing the next verse would be the hardest for Dave to sing; this part of the song would be the most…telling. If they didn't think Dave was gay after hearing him sing about angels waking him from his "flowery" bed, there was no way they could miss this clue. And as scared as he should have been, as hard as it was going to be, Dave wasn't going to back down. Not at all.

He opened his eyes, saw that Kurt was looking at him in wonder and appreciation, and sang.

"Mine ear is much enamored of thy note." He lifted an eyebrow, nodding to affirm his agreement with the lyrics, then caught Kurt's eye, holding it steadfastly. "So is mine eye enthrall-ed to thy shape." He felt his cheeks grow warm, pleased when he saw Kurt smile in response. "I'll follow thee; I'll follow thee, and make a heaven of hell." Feeling bold, he leaned forward and raised his hand to Kurt's face. "I'll follow thee; I'll follow thee, and make a heaven of hell." Taking his hand, Kurt joined him for the next line, "And make a heaven of hell…", and Dave closed his eyes to the pure beauty of it…

{section break}

Phantom harmonies echoed in his head and the image of Hummel's pale smile still warmed Dave's cheeks, but when Dave opened his eyes, he could only curse himself for his idiocy and for indulging in an embarrassing and ridiculous fantasy.

Like any of that could happen

Below him in the audience, Santana was still fussing with her hair, while behind her, Lauren Zizes, looking like she could take down both the cheerleaders and the football team if she didn't win, seemed to be trying to work some mojo from afar on Figgins and that envelope…

Dave spotted Hummel in the crowd about ten seconds before Figgins, voice in total shock, announced that Hummel had won…

Dave felt the shiver of deja vu prickle his scalp, more real memory than neural lapse, and, stunned, he saw the way Hummel's pale face went from shock, to blank, to defiantly resolute in a matter of a minute. Dave felt his heart skip, just for a second, at the way Hummel extricated himself from his friends, from the equally pale hands of his hobbit boyfriend, and head towards the stage.

Kurt Hummel.

Kurt Hummel had been voted Prom Queen…

{section break}

"Faeries away, swift as a shadow
up and down and up and down
I will lead them abandon!

My ear should catch your voice,
My eye should catch your eye,
My tongue your tongue were the world mine

Were the World Mine © 2008 Tom Gustafson & Cory James Krueckeberg