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In Utero

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Dave barfed loudly into the hotel room's trash can, the sickening liquid noises combined with pained groans causing Kurt to leap up out of the bed and race to the bathroom where he, too, started puking into the sink. Krist woke up at the revolting noise and funky smell emanating from Dave's side of the bed and raised himself up slightly to look. He quickly flopped back down onto his pillow. "The fuck is wrong with you two," he grumbled, grouchy. "I'm tryin' to sleep."

Dave just coughed hoarsely and dragged himself out of the rumpled sheets to join Kurt in the bathroom, where he could hear the sounds of tooth-brushing. They rinsed out their mouths as best they could and returned to the bed. "God, I still feel like I'm gonna hurl," Dave said, putting a hand over his mouth.

"Yeah, me too," Kurt added.

"Maybe you guys are just allergic to cum," Krist said, his voice muffled in his pillow.

"Har har," Kurt said, giving him a shove on the shoulder.

On Kurt's other side, Dave's face was drawn with worry, and Kurt wanted to pretend he didn't know what Dave was thinking, but he totally did. He didn't have to bring it up, though, because Dave did a moment later. "You don't think we're pregnant, do you?" he said quietly to Kurt, as though someone might hear him.

Kurt didn't have a chance to answer, as Krist immediately rolled over and said loudly, "No fucking way. We've been careful."

"Pulling out is not careful!" Dave retorted. "I told you guys: we need to use condoms, but nooooo, 'We've been doing it like this since high school, Dave, don't worry!'"

Kurt shrugged apologetically as Dave glared at him and Krist.

"We can't help it if you're a fertile Myrtle!" Krist argued. "It's probably just food poisoning, anyway. We ate a boatload of that taco truck food last night, remember?"

"You're the one who ate the most of it," Kurt said to Krist. "Even you normally don't eat that much." Kurt and Dave glanced at each other.

"Bullshit! I am NOT pregnant!" Krist insisted.

"Let's get some pregnancy tests today and just make sure, ok?" Dave said, his expression slightly anxious.

"Good idea," Kurt agreed. They both stared at Krist.

"Whatever. Fine," he said, rolling back over to go back to sleep.

*

"God, you guys need to grow up," Krist said, "This was your idea in the first place."

Dave and Kurt were making him buy the pregnancy tests, hiding behind their sunglasses from the drugstore clerk and pretending they didn't know each other. Krist just rolled his eyes and got in line with the tests while the other two feigned interest in items on the shelves nearby. The cashier gave Krist a long look as she rang up the tests, glancing pointedly at Kurt and Dave, then smirked to herself and said, "Good luck," as she handed him the receipt.

"Thanks," he said, sincerely, and made for the exit. His bandmates scuttled after him. They pulled their tests out of the shopping bag and read the directions as Krist drove back to the hotel. They wouldn't have time to do the tests until that night, since they needed to get to soundcheck ASAP, and the prospect of waiting that long made both Kurt and Dave really anxious.

“God, I'm feeling nauseated again,” Kurt said. Dave started to agree, but Krist cut him off. “Jeez, Dave, don't egg him on. You guys are such drama queens. If you puke in the van, I'm strangling you both.”

*

“Ohmygod, ohmygod, ohmygod,” Dave said as he fumbled with the key card to their hotel room. “Dibs on the bathroom!” he announced as he got the door open, and shoved in past the other two, who followed more slowly. He grabbed his pregnancy test from the desk and rushed into the bathroom, slamming the door behind him.

“Aren't you supposed to use that in the morning?” Krist asked him through the door.

“Whatever, I'm doing it now. I'll get another one if I have to.” Kurt and Krist went to sit down on the bed and wait for the results. Kurt jiggled his leg nervously until Krist put a hand on it to make him stop.

Dave could be heard through the door, at last. "Ahh, fuck!"

Kurt and Krist perked up and Krist called out, "What is it? Are you pregnant?"

"No, I just pissed on my hand," Dave yelled back. After a few more minutes, Dave emerged, holding the test stick.

“Well?? What does it say?” Kurt demanded. He could kinda tell from Dave's face already, but he wanted confirmation.

“He's pregnant,” Krist stated and fell backwards on the bed, covering his face with a pillow. This was bad news, 'cause it probably meant they all were.

Dave held the stick out so Kurt could read it. Sure enough, it was positive. They exchanged wide-eyed expressions of shock. “Go do yours,” Dave urged Kurt, and Kurt hurried into the bathroom with his test. A short time later, all three of them were sitting tensely on the bed, their positive tests arranged on the plastic bag from the store in the center of the blanket.

"God, how do we know whose baby is whose?" Dave said.

"We don't, until they're born," Kurt replied.

"Are we keeping them?" Dave asked, looking uncertain.

"That sounds like a really bad idea," Krist said.

"Well, I don't know about you guys, but I'm keeping mine," Kurt said, glancing down at his belly. "Whoever's baby it is, it's gonna be awesome." His smile was tentative as he looked at the other two.

Dave looked touched by what Kurt said, but Krist immediately shook his head. "Kurt, no. What if it's mine? I'm not dad material. I can't do this."

"I'll adopt it," Dave piped up. "For real."

Kurt turned to him in surprise. "Really?"

"Yeah, I always assumed I'd be a parent someday. This is kinda early, but whatever. I can deal," he said, then looking over at Krist, "And I agree with Kurt—if it's yours, it'll be awesome."

Krist just grumbled at them and got up to get a beer out of the mini fridge, but sighed loudly when he had it in his hand, rolled his eyes, and tossed the unopened can in the trash. "You guys are adopting this thing, right?" he demanded, pointing at his stomach. "Cause if you don't, I'm leaving it at a fire station or a church or something."

"Of course we are!" Kurt insisted, and Dave nodded his agreement when Kurt looked to him for support.

“Ok,” said Krist reluctantly. “You know, the only reason I'm not getting an abortion is because you guys are promising. You better be serious.”

“We're completely serious,” Dave assured him, and he and Kurt got up and squished Krist in a group hug. He believed them after that.

*

Shit was getting real. They'd made their first appointment with a local midwife once they'd got back to Seattle.

She was a round, loud woman with a puffy bun of blonde hair and makeup that was caked on just a little too thick. She had the husky growl of a former smoker, and champed away on nicotine gum throughout their joint appointment.

"Ok, whose baby is whose?" Vanessa asked, clapping her hands together enthusiastically. Dave looked at the floor, Kurt looked at the ceiling, and Krist shrugged and raised his eyebrows. Vanessa raised an eyebrow of her own and shook her head, tutting at them. She sighed. "Boys will be boys," she muttered to herself. "Well, it will just be a magical surprise, then, won't it?" she said more loudly. “Won't it?” she repeated even more loudly when no one responded, a stern look on her face.

“Yes, ma'am,” Dave said, while Kurt sat up straight and did a military salute. “It sure will,” Krist agreed. Magical? Probably not so much. A surprise? You bet your ass!

Vanessa took them through the details of the Lamaze technique, taught them about prenatal vitamins, and made vague but convincing threats to their safety to get them to stop smoking, quit eating junk food, and learn to cook. As their bodies changed and the babies got bigger, they came to her for advice about how to get a good night's sleep without getting stoned, or where they could find breastmilk donors when they needed them, or what store sold men's pregnancy clothing that wasn't cringey as hell.

*

Kurt just carried on with his usual habit of stealing clothes from Krist's closet, which were more than big enough to accommodate his growing belly, but the other two still needed new clothes and dragged him along on their shopping trip. “Wow, I guess Vanessa really gets us,” Krist commented when they arrived at the little hole-in-the-wall shop she had directed them to.

It was basically a DIY clothing store, with lots of locally made and creative pieces, but with a surprising selection of pregnancy clothing for men on display in the window. Men's pregnancies weren't considered to be nearly as special as women's, since they were so much more common, and since they usually ended in abortion. Men choosing to keep their babies was actually pretty frowned upon, so it was rare to see a display of positivity like the one this store was putting up. The big, corporate clothing stores would have maybe a single rack of incredibly ugly, ill-fitting items for pregnant men, shoved off in an awkward corner, and it had taken a lot of dedicated activist work on the part of the Male Mothers Alliance to get even that small accommodation.

They parked and went inside the shop. It actually looked like somewhere they might not be ashamed to be seen in. The goth guy sitting behind the checkout counter reading a zine had a variety of facial piercings, black-painted fingernails, black lipstick and eyeliner, and a messy mop of hair dyed several different colours. He looked up from his reading and smiled at them, giving them a nod before returning to his zine. “I wonder if he recognises us?” Kurt whispered to Dave.

“I bet he does. He's just too cool to act like it.” It was a relief for all of them to just be treated like normal people instead of as Famous Rock Stars. They were just lucky that word hadn't reached the press yet about their pregnancies; it was only a matter of time before the spotlight turned towards them and shit hit the fan. As far as they were aware, no famous man outside of an indigenous community had ever carried a baby to term. They hadn't really talked about it yet, since it was a non-issue in all of their minds, but being out in public where they would get occasional stares had started reminding them of the fact that they were blazing an entirely new trail.

Krist and Dave tried on loads of stuff while Kurt sat cross-legged in the saggy old wingback chair outside of the dressing rooms and gave a thumbs-up or thumbs-down when they came out to show off an item. When they had finally decided on what they wanted, the three of them went to disturb the goth guy from his reading, and discovered he did know who they were after all.

“I love Bleach,” he said, as he rang up the clothes, not looking up from what he was doing.

“Thank you,” Krist replied, glancing at Kurt. Kurt looked annoyed. “We're proud of it.”

“How'd you end up working here?” Dave asked to alleviate the tension that was vibrating off of Kurt.

The young man lifted his shirt. His belly was striped all over with long, silvery stretch marks that created little valleys and furrows in the flesh, evidencing a recent pregnancy. “This was about the only job I could get when I was pregnant,” he explained. “I got fired from my last one when my boss found out.”

Kurt's expression had changed from annoyed to interested, and he asked, “Is the father still involved?”

“Mm-hmm. The hubs is at home with our baby. We're taking turns working. The owner of this place is pretty awesome, as you might have guessed.”

“Yeah, I noticed,” Kurt said, grabbing a business card and pen from the little tray by the cash register and scribbling down a phone number. “If you or your husband ever need another job, we could use some help answering fan mail.” He placed the card back on the counter.

Goth guy picked it up. “Thanks!” he said with a bright smile.

Krist turned to Kurt as they were walking back to the car. “What changed your mind about him?”

Kurt shrugged. “He knows what we're going through. I feel like we gotta stick together.”

*

“Hey, boys, what's up?” said Vanessa when Dave and Krist showed up at her home office.

“We need help with Kurt's mood swings. They're getting really out of hand,” Krist said.

“We're worried about him,” Dave added, his face illustrating his point better than his words.

Vanessa's brow creased with concern. “What's going on with him?”

“He cries at the drop of a hat, and gets mad at the littlest things. He seems really miserable,” Dave told her.

“And he can't sleep, either,” said Krist, the dark circles under his eyes showing the effect Kurt was having on all three of them.

“I'm sorry to hear that,” she said with a sympathetic frown. “I can prescribe some herbs and vitamins that should help, but honestly, you boys are just gonna have to ride it out for the most part. The hormone surges are just a part of the experience.” She wrote up a list of supplements for them to buy, and as she was finishing the note, a thought popped into her head and she said, “I have another idea that should make a difference. You'll have to go to the video store.”

Later that night, the three of them were squished together on the couch in front of the TV at Krist's place, watching a rental VHS of Sophie's Choice, crying, and eating potato chips and ice cream. Well, Krist and Dave were still attempting to eat the ice cream. Kurt's was melting in its bowl as he sobbed loudly, snot and tears running down his face. He single-handedly used up most of the tissues by the time the movie was over and his eyes were left red and puffy.

“I feel better,” he said quietly as the credits rolled.

“Good. We hoped you would,” Dave said, still sniffling himself. Krist enveloped Kurt in a hug and Kurt hugged him back, relieved. “I guess you just needed a good cry,” Krist said.

“Yeah. Having a baby is a fucking wild ride,” Kurt replied. He slept like a baby himself that night, much to Dave and Krist's relief.

*

It finally happened. The music press found out about the three of them and it suddenly blew up in the media. Things got weird real quick.

“Oh my god, you guys,” Dave said after bursting into his and Kurt's apartment, where Krist and Kurt were cuddling on the sofa watching TV. “I got chased home by a fucking photographer! I think he might still be outside.”

Kurt grimaced. “What the fuck?”

Dave peeked out of the blinds on the front window. “Yeah, he's still there! Look!” he waved the other two over, and Kurt got up and joined him, peering through the blinds at the man, who was lurking behind a shrub loading a new roll of film in his camera.

“I'll go chase him away,” Krist volunteered, rising from the couch.

“But you're pregnant, too,” Kurt said. “He'll just snap pictures of you.”

“I don't care,” Krist said, waving a hand dismissively. He grabbed an umbrella from the closet and went outside, charging aggressively at the photographer while flapping the umbrella and yelling like a Viking warrior going into battle. The man let his camera bang against his chest as he hightailed it back to his car, but not before snapping some shots. They appeared in a local entertainment paper the next day and became a cult favourite, with Pregnant Umbrella Krist soon appearing as graffiti in downtown Seattle and starring on bootleg t-shirts sold at local head shops.

The photographer in question made a small fortune, as his shots soon started appearing in national music magazines. This attracted a lot of weirdos with cameras to the apartment building, looking to make a buck, and the trio had to run back to Krist's house to hide out, hoping their location wouldn't be revealed too quickly. Pictures of the three of them running to Krist's car popped up in a bunch of tabloids and spread from there like a case of mono at a high school, infecting “legitimate” newspapers and non-music-related magazines, until the band was almost more famous for being pregnant than for their wildly popular second album.

*

Kurt was sulking on the couch while Krist and Dave checked the front and back doors to see if it was safe to sneak out and go grocery shopping. “This fucking blows,” he said.

“Yeah, I know,” Krist replied, still scanning the street outside for lurkers. “I hate having to sneak around like this.”

“No, that's not what I meant. I meant that Nirvana is turning into a fucking novelty act. No one cares about Nevermind anymore, they just want the freak show. I feel like we're gonna be paraded around like a two-headed cow for a while and then dumped in the trash by the media, never to be heard from again.”

“I've been worrying about that, too,” Dave said, returning from the kitchen to the living room. He and Kurt looked at each other, and when Krist turned and saw them angsting out, he threw his hands in the air and yelled, “Well! Let's do something about it!” He went and stood by the couch. “We can talk to Geffen. I bet their marketing goons have some tricks up their sleeves. They're a crafty bunch.”

The marketing goons did indeed have some tricks up their sleeves, and came to the band with an idea, but Kurt was dead-set against it, at least initially. Dave and Krist thought it would work and sat and argued with Kurt about it over dinner to try to get him to relent.

“Well, I mean, we do need to provide for our kids. And this would be a pretty good way to do it,” Dave said.

“Exactly,” Krist agreed. “Everyone will buy it, Kurt. We won't have to tour as much.”

They had brought up every reason under the sun, but Kurt had remained stubborn until they started talking about the babies' welfare. His hard expression softened and turned thoughtful. “Yeah,” he finally admitted, putting a hand on his belly. “I guess you guys are right. And it would be a great way to say 'fuck you' to everybody.”

“That's the spirit!” Krist said. “It's a political statement.”

“And anyway, it will be nice to have a portrait of us. I think we're gonna want to remember this,” Dave said shyly, his voice trailing off as Kurt looked over at him.

Kurt smiled. “You're right, we will,” he said, and he and Dave shared a smile. They suddenly felt their heads being pushed towards each other, not having noticed Krist get up from his plate of spaghetti. “Now kiss, you two lovebirds!” he said loudly, still squishing them towards each other. They protested, laughing, and Kurt took a swipe at Krist's long hair, grabbing a bunch and yanking him down to his own level.

“Ow!” Krist exclaimed just before Kurt kissed him. Kurt let him go and then lunged at Dave, kissing him all over his face till he was blushing and breathless. He abruptly stopped and left the kitchen. “I'll see you guys in the bedroom,” he said, grinning, before disappearing down the hall.

“Are we even supposed to be doing that right now?” Dave asked, touching his huge stomach. Krist made a face and shrugged.

Kurt called out from down the hall, “I asked Vanessa and she said it couldn't hurt as long as we took it easy.”

Dave and Krist gave each other a grin and the spaghetti was left to get cold on the table.

*

“God, this is so dumb. I can't believe we're doing this,” Kurt complained as they posed for their twentieth picture at the photographer's studio. They were wearing their most obvious pregnancy clothing; in Kurt's case, he just tucked in the giant t-shirt he was wearing to emphasise his huge stomach.

“Money, money, money,” Dave said to him.

“Filthy lucre,” said Krist, elbowing him gently in the side. “Babies are expensive.”

“And you guys look so cute!” the photographer reassured him as she adjusted her lens. “These pictures are turning out great.”

“Oh, come on,” Kurt moaned, “You don't have to kiss my ass. I know I'm ugly.”

“Dude, shut up,” Dave said. “You're gorgeous.” Kurt just glared at him with mistrust.

“I've tried to tell him that a zillion times,” Krist told Dave, “but he never believes me.”

“'Cause it's not true,” Kurt insisted.

“You are very photogenic,” the photographer interjected matter-of-factly. Both Krist and Dave stared at Kurt and he sighed. “Whatever,” he said, and managed to look pissed off for the rest of the photo shoot.

*

They all went into labour within a two week period. Since their pregnancies were normal, they all decided to give birth at home and got everything ready ahead of time. Kurt's water broke first, and Krist stuck to him like glue throughout the process. Dave was too chicken to watch and manned the drink and snack station they'd set up in the kitchen—mainly for Vanessa to thank her for all her help. Even though Dave was freaked, he couldn't stop himself from drifting towards the closed bedroom door once in a while and listening to the sounds coming from inside. He got goosebumps as he listened and glanced down at his own body with trepidation.

The door handle squeaked as it turned. “Oh my lord, why didn't you boys warn me?” Vanessa exclaimed to Dave when she came out of the bedroom to take a breather and get a drink. She held a hand over her ear. “He screams like a flippin' banshee.” Kurt illustrated her point just then by letting out a howl that blasted through the closed door as another contraction rippled through him.

“Yeah,” Dave shrugged, “He's a screamer.” He paused then snorted as his mind went south with the idea.

Vanessa rolled her eyes and shook her head, moving towards the kitchen. “I don't actually need to know exactly how you boys got yourselves into this situation, thanks very much!” Dave grinned and followed her.

Meanwhile, in the bedroom, Krist was curled up next to Kurt and squeezing his hand rhythmically and stroking his sweaty hair away from his face. “Remember the breathing technique!” he urged Kurt. Kurt attempted to follow the instructions Vanessa had drilled them all on repeatedly, with Krist encouraging him, but all the huffing and puffing barely made a dent in the crazy sensations rolling through his body and he gave up.

“Fuck the breathing technique!” Kurt yelled. “This hurts like hell!” He squeezed his eyes shut as another rush came on.

Vanessa finished up her soda and glanced down the hall as Kurt let out another guttural yell. “Man, I need a smoke!” she said with feeling, then sighed.

“I hear ya,” Dave agreed. He'd been craving a cigarette for months. He was nibbling half-heartedly on some pretzels, too jittery to eat much.

Vanessa pulled out her pack of nicotine gum and glanced at Dave apologetically, popping two pieces in her mouth before marching stolidly back to the bedroom.

*

The re-released special edition of Nevermind sold like Cabbage Patch dolls at Christmas, just as planned. If the front cover, with three swimming babies, didn't catch people's attention, then the back cover, with three heavily pregnant male band members definitely did. The novelty factor was just too tempting to people, and the first pressing sold out within a week, forcing the record company to scramble to get a second batch made. An extra bonus track of Kurt's screams while giving birth had also been added to the album and bootlegged tape copies of the track made the rounds in every high school throughout the country. Radio station phone lines exploded once again with requests for Nirvana songs, which were aired along with heated debates between listeners about the morality and shock value of what the band were doing.

“Pffff,” Kurt said as he sat by the radio feeding both Frances and Maria their bottles. “Listen to this! This stupid woman thinks we did it for money.”

Dave was in the kitchen making chicken tacos for dinner for the three of them, Violet snoozing in the front pack he was wearing. “But, we kinda did,” he said, pausing chopping green onions to look up at Kurt.

“It was one reason. It wasn't the main reason.”

Dave was confused. “What was the main reason?” He didn't always follow Kurt's trains of thought. They seemed to take strange detours sometimes and to change right along with Kurt's ever-changing moods.

“We were making a statement in support of all men like us, that's it ok to carry your own kids and give birth to them, and it's ok to be in a relationship with another man,” he said, as if Dave should know all this.

“Right, of course,” Dave quickly agreed. He loved how deep Kurt was, how everything had a special meaning for him beyond the surface significance. It took Dave off guard sometimes, but he really admired it. The grinding of a key in the door signalled Krist's arrival back from Vanessa's and the other two looked up.

“I got the baby vitamins,” he said triumphantly as he walked in, holding up the little vial.

The girls were done eating and Kurt set down the bottles and scooped up the little ones, walking over to Krist. “Thank you for getting those. Let's swap.” He held out the babies to Krist, who backed away like they were red hot and could burn him.

“Nooo, I told you, I'm not male mom material.” He held his hands out to ward off the tiny beings.

“Dads hold their kids, too,” Kurt insisted, glaring at him.

“You guys promised—”

Kurt interrupted him. “What? You can't even hold them for a second while we get the food ready? They're not gonna bite.”

Krist saw Dave staring at him from the kitchen table as well. “Fine! Ok.” Kurt handed him the babies, taking the vitamins to the fridge, and Krist held the girls gingerly, as if they would break. Kurt turned and looked at Krist again—rooted like a tree in the middle of the living room, trying not to breathe too hard as the babies fell asleep—laughed at him and went to help Dave set the table.


The End


This horrible story was inspired by this terrible, horrible, no-good, very bad Official Nirvana Mpreg Video:

You can't even make this shit up. This crazy-ass band does it all themselves. LMAO