Life or Something Like It
Life is just what happens to you,
While your busy making other plans.
-Beautiful Boy, John Lennon
Kurt had known that it would only a matter of time before he got sick, and honestly, he had expected it to happen much sooner than it did. It wasn't that he was particularly frail or anything like that; it was just that his body wasn't used to life on the road. He wasn't used to sleeping in cars or in awful motels. He wasn't used to eating nonorganic food, so he definitely wasn't used to eating the sort of food they had been eating while on the road. He picked the healthiest options he could—of course he did—and made sure to stop by farmer's markets when they came across them for fresh fruit. He also took a multitude of vitamins and supplements.
Still, though, he had known it would happen, the only question would be when. So, when he woke up on their second day in Bon Temps with all of the telltale signs of an impending illness—runny nose, an awful cough, and a terrible headache—he hadn't been too surprised.
"Maybe you'll feel better later," Blaine, ever the optimist, was quick to look on the bright spot. Kurt could tell that he was exceedingly disappointed about them not being able to go to the vampire bar.
"Maybe," Kurt echoed weakly though he couldn't see how a few hours would make much of a difference.
But by noon, Kurt could add a fever, chills, and muscle aches to his list of symptoms. Plus he was so tired that he could scarcely keep his eyes open.
"Must be the flu," Blaine finally admitted. "How do you feel?"
"How do you think I feel, Blaine?" Kurt snapped. All morning, he had hovered until Kurt was ready to strangle him. "I'm sick, and all I want to do is lay in my bed—not some bed that may or may not have been the site of a grisly murder if the state of these sheets were any indication."
He felt guilty for his outburst almost immediately because Blaine looked stricken. "I'm so sorry," he said hastily. "Of course you don't feel well. I saw a pharmacy down the road. I'll just go and get some medicine, okay?"
When he came back with what must have been half of their cold and flu selection along with a stack of magazines and a humidifier, Kurt felt even worse. He tried to apologize, but Blaine just shrugged dismissively. "Don't worry about it. I know how it is when you're sick. I promise that we'll stay somewhere nicer in the next city. It's obvious that your delicate sensibilities can't take much more of 'roughing it.'"
But he gave Kurt a winning smile, so he knew that all was forgiven. After a lunch of chicken noodle soup—the kind in a cup that Kurt's mom used to buy him when he was sick—Blaine tucked him into bed, smoothing his hair off of his forehead and pressing his lips there fleetingly before settling himself in the chair next to the bed with his journal. The last thing he heard before finally falling asleep was Blaine singing.
The motel room was empty and dark when he woke up. Next to his bed there was a note from Blaine saying that he had gone to Merlotte's for dinner, and he would be back in a little while, but to call if he needed something. Disorientated, he staggered from his bed and into the bathroom. Though he still felt awful, he was definitely feeling better than he had been before. He didn't particularly want to get out of bed and go over to Merlotte's, but he liked the idea of being in the motel alone even less.
He felt less disorientated after a shower, but for someone who never took over-the-counter medication unless he could help it, he still felt more than a little sluggish as he dressed. He remembered once seeing a commercial where the person taking the medication's head looked like a balloon floating away, and that was an apt description of how he felt.
Stepping into the muggy air outside of the motel didn't help matters at all. It was much hotter than Kurt was used to, and by the time he'd walked the length of the small parking lot, his skin was slick with sweat. Merlotte's wasn't very far away at all, and even though he knew that Blaine would come and pick him up if he wanted, he hoped that the walk would help clear his head. He hadn't counted on how dark it was though. Obviously what little public funds Bon Temps had at its disposal—and Kurt seriously wondered whether they had any public funds—weren't allotted for street lights.
Merlotte's was just around the corner from the motel, but there was a small wooded area between the motel and the bar. On first appearance he didn't see anyone else around, but he had the sinking suspicion that he was being followed or watched at the very least. When he came to the wooded area, he squared his shoulders and took a deep breath before plowing on.
Halfway across the area, he was nearly blinded by the headlights from an oncoming car. His breath hitched in his throat as the car slowed and then came to a complete stop on the side of the road beside where he was walking. A lone figure emerged from the car. Moving much faster than humanly possible, the person—man, woman, Kurt couldn't tell but either way he knew it was a vampire, no human could move that fast—grabbed him by one of his wrists, squeezing hard enough to cause the bone to snap in half. He let out a strangled scream, but was cut off halfway through when the vampire stuck a needle into his neck. The last thing he saw before the darkness pulled him under was the vampire's fangs glistening.
When he came to, he was in the trunk of a moving car. His first instinct was to panic, but he tried to remember the self-defense classes his dad had made him take over the spring when he announced that he and Blaine were going to be traveling the country alone. If this was a modern car, there would be a release switch somewhere, but a little bit of finagling told him that there was no release switch. He took a series of deep breaths in an attempt to keep calm. He could kick and scream and beat the lid of the trunk, but that wouldn't help in the long run. He would still be trapped in the trunk, only without the energy to run once he was actually in a position to do so. That was, of course, provided his body would actually cooperate. His limbs felt sluggish and heavy even now. He doubted he could walk let alone run.
After a few minutes, the car came to a stop. Kurt tensed—in preparation for what, he didn't know—but no one came to let him out. Instead there appeared to be a meeting of some sort taking place. Kurt blinked rapidly when the trunk finally did open. The vampire grunted an order for him to get out, and when he didn't comply immediately, he made to grab ahold of him. His knees buckled beneath him the moment he was in an upright position, sending him unceremoniously to the ground. Around him the meeting continued. Kurt tried to pay attention to what was going on, but his head was throbbing, and all he could think about was the fact that he was surrounded by vampires.
Then one of the vampires spoke, shocking Kurt out of his drug-filled haze. "William Compton, you owe us a life."
At those words, Kurt struggled to pull himself into more of an upright position, one of his hands pressing hard against his aching head. He stared wide-eyed at the vampire who had just spoken before swinging his head around to look at the others who were surrounding him. He made eye contact with one of them, a tall vampire with long blonde hair, before setting his gaze on the dark-haired vampire walking towards him.
The vampire dropped to one knee and, carefully, raised Kurt's chin until their eyes met.
"Look in my eyes," the vampire said, his voice cool and silky.
Unable to pull away, Kurt did so, and then all thoughts of running were gone because he had no need to run. Everything was just fine. He was perfectly safe there. No harm was going to be done to—
The peace that had settled over him ended abruptly when the vampire broke their eye contact. He began to struggle because he was not perfectly safe there. He was in immense danger. The vampire was too strong, though, so there would be no escaping. Still, he couldn't not struggle—couldn't just allow himself to be killed, to be murdered for no apparent reason.
"It'll all be alright," the vampire murmured as Kurt thrashed in his arms, a litany of pleas falling from his tongue.
He repeated the same empty promise over and over again while he maneuvered Kurt into what could almost pass as an embrace. "Please forgive me," the vampire said, finally, before sinking his fangs the expanse of Kurt's exposed neck.