Kitty was in her first period biology class, struggling to pay attention. The teacher was talking about different types of leaves, so Kitty was bored. She started daydreaming, doodling she and Artie's names in various combinations in her notebook. Before long she had zoned out.
She had no idea how long had passed before her attention was brought back to reality by the teacher calling her name. i OpiAn office cadet had dropped off a pass for her. Kitty rose to her feet, gathered her books, and collected the pass from the teacher on her way out the door.
Kitty was mystified by the pass, itself, however. It directed her to report to the choir room, but was signed by Principal Sylvester. She knew something must be up and hurried down the halls to her destination.
When she arrived, Kitty found most of the members the Glee Club were already present sitting in silence as Mr. Schue, Principal Sylvester, Mrs. Pillsbury, and Coach Beiste sat up front.
This couldn't be good, she thought.o
"What's going on," she asked.
"Thank you for coming, Kitty. Please take a seat, while we wait for the others to arrive," Mr. Schue answered.
She gave him a confused look and took a seat up front next to Artie and Tina, who seemed just as mystified as she was. Also present were Jake, Marley, Ryder, and Sam. A few moments later, Blaine, Joe, Sugar, and surprisingly Lauren Zeises walked in one or two at a time.
"Now that you're all here, let's get started. " Mr. Schue began.
"Yeah," Jake started, "Go ahead and tell us what Ms. Sylvester is going to do to us now that she's principal. Is glee cancelled again?"
Several other people opened their mouths as if to say something, but were silenced by Mr. Schue holding up his hand.
"No," Mr. Schue said, "Glee is safe for now as long as we win nationals again." He took a deep breath and continued, "We have to tell you all something, and it's not easy to say, so I'd appreciate it if you'd all just let me get it out."
There were nods and sounds of approval from the group, but everyone was clearly more nervous now than a moment before. Kitty reached over and took Artie's hand. Whatever it was they would face it together.
Mr. Schue took another deep breath and began, "I'm sorry to have to tell you this, but Finn Hudson was found dead in his dorm room early this morning."
"That can't be..."
"But I just talked to him."
"This is a joke right?"
"I wish it were," Mr. Schue told them.
"How could that be, we just saw him?"
"Details are still kind of sketchy at this point," Mr. Schue continued, "but, apparently, he and Puck attended a fraternity party Saturday night. There was a lot of drinking, and they left about 6AM Sunday morning. The dorm desk person saw Finn arrive at the dorms a little after 6:30. He was clearly inebriated, and another student had to help him into his room. When no one had seen or heard from him all day yesterday, people started to get worried, but no one went to check on him. When Puck returned to their room after a date about 3 am this morning he found Finn stretched out on his bed dead."
No. It couldn't be! Kitty could not believe that Finn was gone!
They had all just received an email from him a couple weeks ago telling them how excited he was about college, and apologizing for missing regionals; but he promised to be there for Nationals. He couldn't be dead.
She'd only talked to him a week or so ago, during the first week of the Beatles tribute. He'd made a surprise call to congratulate her when she changed her Facebook status to "In A Relationship with Artie Abrams" and wish them well. It turned out that he, like half the rest of the glee club, had a feeling about the two of them. Then he had told her how proud he was of her.
It just couldn't be true!
Ever since the school shooting incident a month or so before, Kitty had made a point of letting the important people in her life know how much she meant to them. Finn had been the one who had taken a chance on her and let her into glee club when he had been running it. She'd intended to tell him how much that had meant to her. But, that was something she wanted to tell him in person, not over the phone.
Now she would never get the chance.
A single tear streamed down her cheek, and was quickly wiped away by her free hand.
No! I can not show emotion. I just be strong!
But it was no use. She felt the familiar flush of warmth in her face she got when she was crying.
Kitty's eyes began to get blurry with tears as she looked around the room. Looks of disbelief appeared on everyone's faces. Marley, Sugar, and Tina began to cry, each comforted by their respective boyfriends and Blaine.
Artie looked crushed, she knew that the two of them were pretty close. She reached over and put her arm around his shoulder, squeezing him close to her.
# # #
Artie Abrams felt like someone had kicked him in the gut. Next to Tina, and now Kitty, Finn was probably his best friend.
He was reminded of what he had told Finn just before he graduated "Finn. Right now you're something that I never thought possible when I first rolled down these halls. You're my friend ... our friend. Even before glee club was kind of cool you had our backs. You were on the football team. You were one of the most popular kids in school. You had a lot to lose, and people forget the 7~~tn070-sacrifices you made. We wanted to thank you."
Then, he and the underclass men had then sung the Beatles song In My Life to him. The song, especially the line, "Some are gone, and some remain," now seemed increasingly fitting. Artie felt his own tears begin to flow.
After high school Finn had lost his direction. He didn't get into the acting school that he wanted, and washed out of the army after only a few weeks. Artie knew that all he needed was a nudge and a little encouragement, which he was more than happy to provide in return for the friendship and support he'd received over the years.
When he saw how excited Finm was about the prospect of them doing the musical Grease at McKinley, Artie knew what he had to do. He used his powers of persuasion to convince Finn to come and direct the musical with him. At first he seemed unsure, but when Artie recruited two of their other former clubmates to help as well, he began to get very excited about the idea, and poured his heart and soul into it, even as his relationship with Rachel was exploding.
The musical itself was a smash, due in no small part to Finn's contribution to the production. In addition to the boosting of his confidence, it had the side effect of recruiting two new members for the Glee Club, one of whom was currently sitting next to him holding his hand.
Then Mr. Schue surprised all of them by arranging for Finn to take over the leadership of the glee club while he was in Washington serving on a Blue Ribbon Panel to Improve Arts Education. It was during those few months that he discovered that he had a talent for teaching, and enrolled in college to get his teaching degree pursuing hi2 s dream. Even after graduation, Finn was still an inspiration to he and the other glee club members.
But now his friend was dead, and life would never be the same again.
He felt a Kitty's arm around his shoulder, and leaned in to share her embraced.
Finn's death was devastating, but they would get through it together.