"Go to college they said, it'll be fun they said" Lance groaned from his place from the ground where his laptop just shut off for no reason for the third time that night. "Let's go out" Lance suggested sneaking his way onto the couch where Keith had his own textbooks open and where he himself was dying.
"I guess a break isn't a bad idea" Hunk agreed from the kitchen table where he and Pidge set up shop. "And it is Friday night" he added with a lilt of his voice.
Keith groaned already knowing what drift Hunk was throwing and of course not a second later Lance caught it. "Karaoke bar, oh pleeeeease! We haven't gone in ages!" he whined placing himself on top of Keith, in an effort to no doubt convince him to go out.
"Honestly my brain is too fried to argue so let's go," Pidge, the traitor, said now it was just Keith who stood alone. Lance took this bit of information in full stride and made it his mission to get Keith to cave. Not like Keith stood a chance against this boy, who was currently staring up at him with the bluest of eyes that could turn anyone in their favor.
It didn't help that Keith was also incredibly gone for the owner of those royal blues. It wasn't news to anyone who had eyes that these two had major chemistry together and that it was only a matter of time before they get together. If Lance had it his way they would already be dating but Keith believed that they needed more time. Even if they 'already bickered like a married couple' according to their friends Lance respected Keith's wishes to remain as friends, even if all he really wanted was to kiss the boy senseless.
"Come on Keith we haven't had any real fun in forever," Lance said softly moving his hands to the nape of his neck to play with the hairs that fell out of his ponytail. By the way he was looking about him Keith could tell what kind of fun he had in mind. Lance was a performer at heart and one of his favorite pastimes was singing and dancing dramatically to any and every song. It didn't help that Hunk and Pidge loved watching Keith suffer at the hands of their best friend.
"Fine let's go" Keith relented earning him the brightest of smiles and a sloppy kiss on the cheek from Lance.
"Wooo let's go!" he celebrated running to his room to no doubt change into a more 'karaoke appropriate' outfit. "Should we invite Shiro, Allura, and Matt?" Hunk asked as he too got up to make a change of clothes.
"I'll text them and while I'm at it I'll invite Shay too," Pidge said her fingers already moving at lightning speed over her phone. Keith could hear Hunk's shriek and Lance's laughter echo from the hallway.
Kara-Okay is not the most popular of bars in the Altean nightclub strip but since Allura's uncle owns the place the gang always got a discount on their drinks and since the place guaranteed they would both save money and have a good time they made it a point to visit enough to make them regulars. That and Hunk insisted that the slogan was enough to warrant a return 'if you're not feeling alright you'll be kara-okay soon enough!" the guy loved a good pun.
Keith could tell the night was sure to be a good one as he watched Hunk, Lance, and Pidge bust out the lyrics of Bohemian Rhapsody on stage. At least that is until Allura showed up with an extra guest in tow and an apology in her eyes.
"I'm sorry guys, my uncle Zarkon was in town and father insisted that-"
"That I enjoy the nightlife with my cousin" Lotor finished smiling and already looking for a particular member of their group. Keith narrowed his eyes as he poured the rest of his drink down his throat, he was going to need a lot more alcohol if he was going to tolerate Lotor nosing around their night.
He had just ordered another drink and turned in time to see Lance jump onto a tabletop to hit a high note earning him a round of applause and a few catcalls. Luckily Hunk was there to catch him as he fell off the table and dropped him by Pidge so the three of them could go into the guitar riffs with renewed vigor. Keith didn't know how they had managed to keep the crowd engaged for the whole six minutes of that song and not run out of breath.
'Any way the wind bloooooooows' Lance sang softly before falling on his knees as the last note of the song faded out. The trio was then rewarded with a thunderous round of applause and whistles as they made their way off the stage and back to their booth. Keith had pitied the brave soul to go after that performance.
"Allura you made it!" Lance beamed wrapping her up in a sweaty hug which she gladly returned as she complimented the trio's performance. "Oh, that?! That was nothing you should've seen us in our prime" he said jokingly.
"It was truly a magnificent performance Lance" Lotor agreed startling Lance as he seemed to suddenly materialize by his side. "I'd love to perform with you," he said to which Lance laughed at and greeted the sneaky man.
Lotor didn't tend to hang out with the rest of them but whenever he did he made it a point to stay close to Lance and much to Keith's annoyance the two were friends. And although Lance does have an impressive intuition when it comes to others and their feelings when it involves others feelings for him he tends to be very dense. It had taken a better half of the year to even convince Lance that Keith reciprocated his feelings. Sometimes he still finds it hard to believe when people respond to his flirtation, especially so if it's Keith doing the responding. Which also means that every bat of an eyelash Lotor throws at him Lance deems to be purely innocent and not at all flirtatious.
"Oh my God please kill me" Pidge's shouts pulls Keith's attention as the beginnings of Vanilla Ice's Ice Ice Baby start to play. Keith almost laughed out loud as he recognized Matt on stage but his amusement quickly died as he watched his brother be pulled on stage to perform alongside him.
"I second that death wish" Keith adds as he hides behind his drink downing it in record time and ordering another. He knows that future Keith is going to hate him for the killer hangover but right now all he wants is to be an only child.
Matt takes the first verse with Shiro as his echo as they both attempt to dance to the beat. To their surprise, Matt is nailing the choreography and looks like a nerdier version of Vanilla Ice while Shiro is sticking to the background. The audience is both cheering and laughing at the pair's antics and it's not until Matt manages to slip that Pidge makes a move to hide.
"Hunk you finish recording this I cannot survive another minute of this second-hand embarrassment!" she yells ducking under their table.
After about three renditions of Don't Stop Believing from various drunk groups who fall short of doing the song justice, Keith is finally tipsy enough to go up. It's to no one's surprise that he chooses to belt out an MCR classic and manages to get everyone in the bar to join in.
"He's a such an emo mess" Pidge comments amused as the person in question practically yells the chorus of Welcome to the Black Parade. The members of the bar scream along with him and some even stand to jump along with the beat.
"Yeah but he's our emo mess," Lance said fondly watching Keith enjoy himself and laughed as Shiro pulled his phone out to use the flashlight. Pidge laughs and does the same and they see Keith glare at them before giving them the middle finger. However, the rest of the establishment soon notices and also pull out their own phones or lighters which just causes Lance to laugh even more.
When Keith comes back to them the first thing he says is a cheery "Fuck you, all of you but especially you Shiro" he then downs a few shots and is soon all drunk smiles.
"You did great babe," Lance says the compliment with sincerity and allows Keith to lean on him for support as yet another person chooses Livin' On A Prayer.
"Ugh this song should be blacklisted for the rest of the night," Lotor says chuckling when Lance nods in agreement.
"I think this is the twentieth time its been sung tonight! I'm going to need another drink" Lance says.
"Let me buy you one," Lotor says getting closer to Lance every time he speaks, the guy even braves putting a hand on Lance's shoulder. Keith is tempted to smack it off but finds he doesn't have to since Pidge pops up in between the two placing a drink in front of Lance while practically growling.
"That's it! Lance, it's a code I'm Pissed!" she exclaims latching onto his wrist and bringing him up to the DJ to put in her turn.
"What just happened?" Lotor asks and even though Keith doesn't like the guy he knows what it's like to be in the dark about things and how annoying it is, he's about to shed some light onto the situation when Matt beats him to it.
"One thing my little sister hates more than having to explain her complex relationship with peanut butter," he pauses no doubt for dramatic effect but Lotor just looks confused so he carries on. "Is getting hit on repeatedly by someone who she's already told politely to fuck off" he finishes.
"Oh man it's been a while since a code I'm Pissed," Hunk says a bit concerned at whoever managed to incur the wrath of their small friend.
"So she sings a song for this sort of occasion?" Lotor asks and Matt just replies with a nod and a 'you'll see'. Sure enough, after a few moments, Pidge is at the microphone and Lance comes back to the table with a grin.
"What no piano man tonight?" Allura asks a bit sad that she won't get to hear him play tonight.
"No it's Rolo's shift he knows when to stop the track, shut up she's going to start" he grinned clearly excited for Pidge's performance.
"I'd like to dedicate this song to you, Dave! Please listen carefully" she says in an overly sweet voice that can not possibly be sincere. She nods and the opening notes of Celine Dion's All By Myself filters through the sound system.
A few of the other regular members laugh or cheer in anticipation.
"When I was young
I never needed anyone
And making love is never fun
Those days are not gone
I'm not alone
Look at all the friends I know
Don't dial my telephone
All by myself
I wanna be
All by myself
Pidge manages to hit all the notes easily despite being somewhat drunk and does her best to make her point clear. She continues to change the lyrics to fit the situation and makes grand gestures with her hands. "So listen, buddy," she says during the instrumental "I want to be-
All by myself
Please let me be
All by myself
All by myself
I wanna be
All by myself"
"So leave me alone" she ends and drops the mike as Rolo cuts the song off before the outro. The response she receives from the crowd is a mixture of laughter and applause, but all of it praising her stellar performance.
"And that is a code I'm Pissed," Matt says and goes back to clapping and whistling along with the crowd.
"Remind me never to get on her bad side" Lotor leans into Lance as he says so and smiles when he manages to make the brunette laugh.
"Believe me, buddy, she's not the one you should be worried about right now" Hunk mutters looking at Keith with concern. Hunk could tell that he looks about ready to throw Lotor to the other side of the room and shakes his head in dismay. He will never understand how Lance can be so blind to things.
Keith breathes a sigh of relief when he notices that Lotor has managed to disappear while Hunk and Shay are in the middle of performing a very adorable rendition of Summer Nights from Grease where Hunk shows off his surprising and impressive falsetto as Danny Zuko.
Keith reclaims his spot beside Lance and smiles when the motion encourages him to place an arm around his waist. "Hunk's amazing, I didn't know he could sing that high," he says.
"Yeah we were in the musical in high school he was the understudy but got to on stage when the lead got strep throat," Lance said in response to Keith's inquiry.
"Who were you?" he askes
"Rizzo" he replies with a wink and Keith feels his jaw drop causing Lance to laugh. "I'm kidding! God, I wish they would've let me, no I got Kenickie" he said with a pop of his collar to which Keith responded with a playful roll of his eyes and a jab to his side. Luckily Lance was used to Keith's violent tendencies dodged and instead used his own momentum to pull him close to his side. Where Keith intends to remain for the rest of the evening and where he tries his best to keep Lotor away when he came back.
The guy either really couldn't take a hint or he didn't care, both of which pissed Keith off. 'If he was your boyfriend this wouldn't be a problem' the small nagging voice whispers from the back of his mind. Looking up at Lance's flushed face and brilliant smile do nothing to silence the voice and he feels a sharp jab of jealousy when he notices Lotor make Lance laugh again. Even though he had been trying to keep him at a distance he was still managing to coax Lance away.
Keith is no idiot he knows that Lance is attractive and funny and kind and basically one big fantastic package wrapped in a big bow. He knows that if he keeps waiting he's going to lose him. But if they do date and it doesn't turn out like Lance and him want it to and instead ends in heartache. Keith doesn't want to lose him entirely, but if he keeps waiting he'll still lose him to someone else.
He's still brooding by the time Hunk and Shay finish their song and he watches Hunk grab Shay's hand without fear. The two walk back with big smiles on their faces and an equally as big blush spreading across their cheeks. Seeing his normally cautious friend toss that same caution to the wind doesn't help the internal battle Keith finds himself in and he decides its time for another drink.
Keith is somewhere between his seventh or eighth drink when he notices Lotor whisper something in Lance's ear making him nod enthusiastically. Which he knows means he will need another drink if he's going to make it through whatever Lotor has planned. He goes to order said drink when he bumps into a solid body.
"Oh hey Shiro you want me to get ya somethin?" he slurs a little because he isn't drunk just pleasantly buzzed and tries moving past him.
"Nope I don't think so Keith, I'm cutting you off" he announced pushing Keith back into his seat while asking Hunk to go get him a water.
"What? No I'm fine" Keith says, well at least that's what he thinks he said what he actually said wasn't very comprehensible since he was too busy looking around for Lance who had mysteriously disappeared along with a silver-haired snake.
"Keith this is the third time I've had to stop you from trying to sing Welcome To The Black Parade again in the past two minutes" Shiro commented not at all noticing the disappearance of a valued member of their group.
"Where's-" Keith begins then registers Lance's voice coming from the stage where he currently reciting the opening lines of American Boy.
This a number one champion sound
Yeah, Estelle, we about to get down
Who the hottest in the world right now?
Keith rolls his eyes at the song choice but smiles nonetheless and he's not surprised that Lance takes Kanye's part in the song. He is surprised however when Lotor joins him on the chorus and matches his dance steps. Lance takes the first verse and Keith feels his stomach dip as he sings it to Lotor who is very much enjoying the attention.
Don't like his baggy jeans
but I'mma like what's underneath them.
He winks and motions to Lotor's parachute-like pants, and Keith decides he really hates parachute pants.
And no I ain't been to MIA
I heard that Cali never rains and New York's heart awaits.
First let's see the west end.
I'll show you to my brethren.
I'm liking this American boy, American boy
"He's not even American he's British" Keith hears himself mutter and feels it very necessary to point that fact out. Shiro turns to tease Keith and let him know he isn't exactly all American himself but the words stop short when he notices the angry expression on his little brother's face. He hasn't seen him so outwardly distressed in so long and it pains him that there's nothing he can do. Especially since it was his own stubbornness that is the cause of his problem.
But seeing the easy way that Lance and Lotor dance with each other on stage probably isn't helping. The two easily weave around each other but it's not until Lotor starts the second verse do they actually touch. He places his arm around Lance's neck and pulls him closer as he sings about wanting him to take him on a trip. Lance's eyes widen in surprise and his face flushes when Lotor makes some rather suggestive moves.
Keith tightens his hands on his empty glass but quickly releases it when he hears a crack. He looks down at his cup partially to inspect it but mostly because he can't bear to watch Lotor whoo Lance in front of him while he sits in the audience. He's still looking at the table when the crowd cheers loudly and he feels sick thinking about at what could have caused that reaction. He is then blinded when a spotlight lands on their table and his eyes widen as he registers that Lance had come over to rap Kanye's part to them.
I always act a fool oww oww.
Ain't nothing new now now.
He crazy, I know what ya thinking.
Lance smiles as Pidge plays along and winds a finger around the air by her ear to confirm that he is indeed crazy. He makes his way over to Keith next as he raps the next lines.
Ribena I know what you're drinking.
Rap singer. Chain blinger.
Holla at the next chick soon as you're blinking.
Whats your persona.
About this Americana rhymer.
Lance moves his hips in a slow and suggestive move that has Keith blushing bright red. He almost smiles seeing Lance smirk at him clearly smug at the reaction he received. He then sits on his lap and wraps his arm around his neck as he finishes the verse. All too soon he's moving away from him and Lotor comes meets him halfway as Lance makes his way towards the stage again much to Keith's annoyance.
They fall into this weird chase where Lotor does his best to catch Lance who seems to be having too much fun dancing on his own to be caught up in Lotor's arms. It isn't until they get to the final
Would you be mine?
Could you be my love, my love?
Ooh, would you be my American boy, American boy?
That Lance seems to understand what Lotor really wants from him. Keith feels himself become nauseous as Lance's face glows bright red at the realization and he struggles through the last chorus.
The crowd gives a thunderous applause as they make their way off stage, but before they make their way back to the table Lotor pulls Lance aside and the two duck into a hallway.
Keith tries swallowing down the lump that has formed in his throat and does his best to appear indifferent. It's hard to do when he realizes his friends are all examining him for any cracks.
"Keith are you-" Shiro starts but he doesn't get time to say anything else as Keith takes off and disappears into the crowd that's still applauding at the performance.
Lance felt like his cheeks were on fire as he registered that Lotor had, in fact, asked him out. That what he had been trying to convey during their performance was that he was interested in Lance. He never felt like such an idiot in his life.
Looking back on the night's events he can clearly pick out instances when he lingered too long or got too close but he was too distracted by Keith's sudden need to cling to him to really notice Lotor. Which also explained why Keith had been so touchy over the past few hours, whether it was intentional or not he was trying to keep Lotor away.
At that, Lance felt his insides turn to mush at the thought of Keith being even a little possessive. But anything Keith related made Lance's heart beat faster, the guy had managed to engrave himself so deeply into his heart that Lance really couldn't sense anything past his feelings for him. Oh no. Keith! If he had finally been trying to keep Lotor's advances at bay then there was a very high possibility that he knew what Lotor was conveying with his song choice.
"I-I'm flattered really but-" Lance began
"But you've got feelings for someone else" Lotor finished and sighed. "I kind of figured there was a reason why he was glaring at me," he said with a shrug.
Lance smiled softly at that, "Yeah Keith's cute like that" he laughed. The two made their way back to the booth and were ambushed by Shiro and Allura before they could sit.
"How dare you!" Allura screeched pulling Lotor's ear and complained about this is why she didn't bring him out with her.
"Is Keith with you?!" Shiro asked worry lacing his tone and actions as he grabbed Lance by the shoulders and shaking him.
"What no?! He isn't with you!" Lance practically shouted looking at the booth as if Keith would just be hiding there.
"Oh God! He's drunk and upset and that's the worst combination to have misplaced him!" Shiro exclaimed shaking him some more as he began to really panic.
"He's upset?!" Lance yelled also grabbing Shiro by the shoulders to shake him. Shiro nodded and explained how he had just run into the crowd without warning and yeah that sounded like something an upset Keith would do.
"Where could he be!" he yelled distressed and let go of Shiro to run his hands through his hair.
"I have a few ideas," Pidge said and pointed behind them drawing their attention to the stage just as a new song began to play for the next karaoke participant which so happened to be Keith.
"Oh my God" Lance felt his eyes tear up as he realized what song he was planning on singing.
"He is so drunk," Shiro said with a quiet sort of awe at his little brother's confidence while also pulling his phone out to record every second of arguably Keith's best-drunk decision.
Late at night when all the world is sleeping
I stay up and think of you
And I wish on a star
That somewhere you are thinking of me too
Lance couldn't look away as he watched the love of his life drunkenly sing one of his favorite love song of all time. He quickly made his way to the front of the crowd by the stage, his friends following closely behind.
Wonder if you ever see me, and I
Wonder if you know I'm there
If you looked in my eyes
Would you see what's inside?
Would you even care?
Keith had his eyes closed as he sang and from this angle the lights made him look almost angelic and when he opened his eyes Lance squeaked at the gorgeous deep indigo color. He felt the air get sucked out of his lungs when those eyes finally found him and held him in place as he sang.
I just want to hold you close
But so far, all I have are dreams of you
So I wait for the day, and the courage to say
How much I love you
Keith kneeled and brought his free hand up to cup Lance's face as he serenaded him with Selena. If Lance wasn't already in love with this boy then he would've fallen right then and there.
"This is so gay" he heard Pidge say from behind him and then he heard a soft 'oomf' noise where Hunk no doubt had elbowed her.
But Lance could care less as swayed along with the music and when Keith got to the lines in Spanish he felt himself melt at hearing the words 'corazon' and 'como te necesito' and 'mi amor' fall from his lips.
Late at night when all the world is sleeping
I stay up and think of you
And I still can't believe
That you came up to me and said I love you
I love you too
Lance nodded in confirmation, he loved this boy. He was beyond just loving him Lance was weak for him, this boy and Selena Quintanilla was just a lethal combination.
Dreaming all tonight
Till tomorrow and for all of my life
And there's nowhere in the world I'd rather be
Than here in my room dreaming with you endlessly
He wishes they were at home right now so he could kiss him senseless. He had waited patiently to call Keith his and to have unrestricted access to all things Keith and if he still wanted to stay 'just friends' after this Lance was sure he was going to die. But something told him that this was it, all the waiting would be over after this night.
After his solo, Lance had pulled Keith off the stage and marched them home. To say he was eager was an understatement and Keith was pretty sure that being drunk had nothing to do with the way his head was spinning right now.
No, he was positive it had all to do with the way Lance had him currently pinned against the door to his apartment and was kissing him senseless. It's not like they hadn't kissed before there were a few drunk nights, and a lot of 'accidental' chaste pecks exchanged between the two, but this felt indefinitely different.
The kisses between them before had all felt rushed and had an undertone of guilt. He felt guilty of the fear he had of committing to someone wholeheartedly. Those accidental kisses were far from an accident and Keith knew that he wanted them and that he wanted to commit to Lance but he couldn't risk it. Lance had become such a constant fixture in his life that he didn't think he could bear a relationship ruining it. He didn't realize that his fear had been the only thing jeopardizing his companionship.
That is until tonight when his fear was shot down at the thought of someone else taking what he so badly wanted. But none of that really mattered anymore when Lance was doing his best to scramble his thoughts.
When Keith pulled away to breathe Lance moved to his jaw and then slowly down his neck. Keith felt his knees turn to jelly and was glad he had the door behind him to support his weight. He wanted to move to his bedroom to more comfortably enjoy all of Lance's attention but he didn't want him to stop.
Apparently, Lance was having the same idea and moved to support Keith, "On three jump and wrap your legs around my waist" he whispered then on three, Keith somehow managed to jump and then Lance was carrying them to his room. All the while placing soft kisses on his neck.
Lance place him softly on the bed and if possible even more slowly took his time exploring the length of Keith's neck. All Keith felt was hot, his face was flushed and with every kiss or bite Lance left added to the heat that was beginning to pool at the bottom of his stomach.
When he slipped his hand under his shirt Keith felt his stomach flip in anticipation, no.... that wasn't anticipation.
"Keith? Keith are you alright?" he heard Lance ask in concern upon feeling him tense underneath him which was nice but right now Keith did not feel alright at all.
"I don't feel kara-okay" Keith stumbled and somehow managed to push Lance off and make his way to the bathroom before the inevitable happened and he was emptying the contents of his stomach.
Keith had thrown up three times already and his stomach felt nowhere near better. Once Lance had stopped laughing at him for the awful pun he joined him in the bathroom and offered himself up as a human pillow for Keith to lean against between the bouts of nausea. Unfortunately, the kissing and other fun things they had planned to do tonight were canceled on account of past Keith's horrible decisions.
Keith moaned as his stomach felt like it was consuming itself and gladly took the water bottle Lance had brought with him from Keith's bedroom.
"Still not feeling alright?" Lance asked combing his hand through his hair and pulling it away from his face. Keith just shook his head not wanting to open his mouth and risk throwing up again.
"Don't worry I'll take care of you until you feel kara-okay," Lance said as seriously as he could.
"Please shut up" Keith grumbled barring his face into Lance's neck to hide his blush. From here he could feel Lance's laughter rumble through him before finally hearing it echo through the bathroom and there really wasn't anyone else he'd want to take care of him.