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Catch the Stars

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Wonwoo is quick to hold Mingyu when the younger buries his face in his hands and promptly starts sobbing in the middle of the restaurant.

He barely has any time to process what’s happening, that Joohyun is here, and Seulgi too, and Mingyu still feels like it was yesterday when they took both girls to the bus station in the middle of the night.  

Basically helping them escape the hell that was the village.

And here they are, looking pretty as ever, healthy, and more than anything, happy, and Mingyu is just so glad they’re okay, that they’re still together—

The emotions just all spill over.

Mingyu whines in embarrassment, hears Wonwoo make a concerned sound and some rustling from in front of them, and then suddenly someone pulls him into a warm hug.

He smells something floral and sweet, a perfume that isn’t exactly familiar, but Joohyun is familiar, her arms small but strong around Mingyu’s shoulders. Joohyun coos at him and chuckles wetly when Mingyu lets out something between a sob and laugh and wraps his own arms around her.

“Joohyun,” He mumbles, his fingers carding through her hair. “Shit, I can’t believe— you’re here. What— Since when?”

She pulls away from the hug and ruffles Mingyu’s hair, trying to distract from her own tears. She’s wearing a soft jumper, her cheeks rosy; her skin has lost it’s tan, instead reminding Mingyu of the snow outside. “We don’t live here, Mingyu. We came here to see you. Wonwoo helped us, obviously.”

Mingyu sniffles, his eyes flickering to Seulgi who smiles shyly at him from where she’s hugging Wonwoo; her hair is lighter, almost like she dyed it. He then looks at Wonwoo in question.

Wonwoo sighs and shrugs. “I’ve been keeping in touch with them. We see each other every now and then. I thought instead of telling you how they’re doing I’d just bring you guys together.”

Mingyu then sits down when Joohyun tells him to, Wonwoo sitting close to him, which Mingyu is thankful for. He’s not sure how much Joohyun and Seulgi now about them, but he doesn’t have to wonder for too long; Wonwoo takes his hand and twines their fingers together again; he’s not showing off, but he’s not trying to hide it their when he places them in his lap, both girls following the action with knowing smiles on their faces.

Joohyun then looks at Mingyu and raises an eyebrow. “Seems like a lot has changed, huh?”

Mingyu blushes, so aware of all the eyes on him, especially Wonwoo’s warm gaze on the side of his face. He snuggles into the older a little more and sees Wonwoo smile to himself from the corners of his eyes. “Yeah, I guess so. I’m so glad you two are okay. I mean—you are, right?”

Joohyun turns to look at Seulgi, and Mingyu feels like he’s invading on a private moment, watching Joohyun’s face soften completely as Seulgi offers her girlfriend a warm smile. “We’re okay, yeah."  

“Wow, okay. Uhm. I don’t even know where to start. Where do you live? What do you do? I feel so lost.” Mingyu takes a deep breath. “I’m kinda really overwhelmed right now.”

The other three laugh and when Mingyu turns to look at Wonwoo, the older just shakes his head, his eyes fond, and he brings his hand to Mingyu’s face to brush the last tear from his cheek.

Mingyu almost whines, unable to stop himself from leaning into the touch, and he hears Wonwoo sigh, feels him pull Mingyu closer to him by the hand where they’re still holding on to each other.

Joohyun clears her throat, ripping them out of their moment. “Not that I’m not very happy for you two, but you can go and be sickeningly sweet later, when I’m not there to witness it, preferably.”

Seulgi rolls her eyes. “She’s like the biggest sap on the planet, don’t listen to her. She actually started crying when Wonwoo told her that he loved—“ Seulgi snaps her mouth shut. “I mean. Nothing.”

Mingyu glances at Wonwoo, who glares at his cousin before deciding that he finds the table very interesting. Mingyu grins, his heart fluttering in glee, and squeezes the boy’s hand. “Let’s order something,” Wonwoo mutters gruffly, waving the waitress over.

After they’re done ordering, Mingyu urges Joohyun to tell him about everything he’s missed out on after they left the village.

Joohyun finally starts telling him all of it.

From the night they left the village, how they arrived in Yeongchan, where one of Seulgi’s friends from college offered them a room in her apartment until they found a place for themselves. She helped them find a small one-bedroom apartment, and Joohyun explains that for the first few weeks, they basically had to live off their savings since Seulgi was busy with transferring to another college and didn’t have time to find a job, and Joohyun, well, she had a hard time finding something, having no previous working experience or any sort of impressive CV to show off. She got herself a job at dog day care eventually, and she looks happy when she tells Mingyu about it. Seulgi’s working on the side, too, so they seem to be able to make ends meet.

When Mingyu tells her to ask him for help if they ever need any money (not that he isn’t broke himself, but hey, he could probably survive a month or two without buying gallons of that expensive coffee from the corner store if that means he could help out his friends) Joohyun lightly kicks his foot under the table, making Mingyu pout.

Wonwoo snickers at that. “You think I haven’t tried that already? She literally kicked me out of their apartment when I offered to help.”

You shut up!” Joohyun grunts as she sends Wonwoo a glare. “Don’t think for a second I don’t notice the extra money that keeps showing up in our bank account each month.” Her glare softens when Wonwoo merely shrugs and smirks at her. “I hate you.”

Mingyu’s chest warms at the exchange. He likes this. Likes how all of them look out for each other, how much they care. It’s not often you stumble across close-knit friendships like this, especially in a money- and image-driven city like this.

“Have you… I mean, have your families reached out to you since you left?” Mingyu asks after a moment of consideration. 

Joohyun tenses up a little. “No. No… at first we thought they’d cause trouble, kind of expected our angry relatives to show up at our doorstep out of nowhere for a while. But when nothing happened, and we didn’t hear anything from them, that was just that. I guess that speaks for itself, right?” She smiles, but it looks pained, and Mingyu’s heart hurts for both of them.

Seulgi’s eyes look a little glassy. “It’s— It’s fine. We expected this to happen. It… would’ve been nice to have our families’ support, but it’s okay. We knew there was no chance of that ever happening.”

Mingyu wants to say something, anything to make them smile again, but Wonwoo beats him to it.

“You have our support,” The older says, his voice tightly laced with anger and frustration. “They don’t fucking deserve to be in your lives if they’re ready to abandon you for being in love.”

“Hyung’s right,” Mingyu speaks up after a moment, the atmosphere around them heavy and gloomy, the conversation having popped their small happy bubble and splashed them with the cold, hard reality of things. “It hurts to get pushed away by the people who you thought would stand beside you no matter what, but it also makes you stronger, okay? You’ll learn to… love yourself that much more instead. And you’ll meet new people who will fill that hole in your heart. You know you have my support, too. I love you guys a lot."

Seulgi smiles at him.

Joohyun laughs wetly and brings her sweater paws up to hide her face. “We love you, too, you idiots. Stop making me cry in the open like this, god…”

They all laugh quietly, the tension from before finally disappearing again.

Joohyun eventually clears her throat, wiping at her cheeks as she sits up straight in her seat. “Enough about us. What’s going on in your life, hm? Wonwoo refused to tell us anything. As always.

Mingyu looks at said boy who only sags back into his seat tiredly. “Why the hell am I being attacked like this? I brought you guys together. Show some respect.”

“Honey, you gotta earn that respect first,” Joohyun mutters, scowling at him, before returning her attention to Mingyu. “So?”

“Well,” Mingyu starts, clearing his throat. “Nothing too exciting happened. I’m still in college, going to classes. Or you know, doing my best, at least. I’m uh. Living with my roommate? He’s nice. You should meet him one day. He’s gay. Not that that matters! Right?” He laughs nervously, ignoring the amused eyes on him. He has no idea why the heck he’s so nervous all of a sudden. “Uhm. Wonwoo hyung… surprised me last weekend. I mean, I first ran into Yerim in the bus, which was so weird? I honestly thought I’d lost it for real when I saw her. But, uh. Yeah. That was a nice surprise. Really… cool. And. Here we are.”

Joohyun chuckles after taking a sip from her drink. “Yeah, you’re here. Both of you. Together.”

Mingyu shifts nervously at the meaningful look the girl shoots him. He really doesn’t know how much he’s allowed to say. Sure, Wonwoo changed a lot since he left the village, but that doesn’t mean he’s comfortable with telling everyone about them.

To put it simply; Mingyu doesn’t want to mess up.

Not now, when everything feels so okay.

“Stop it, Joohyun,” Wonwoo says. “Don’t make him uncomfortable.”

Seulgi coos and proceeds to pout. “Look at him protecting his beau.”

Mingyu chokes on air, whips his head around to stare at Wonwoo, whose cheeks turn red as he glares at both the girls in front of them. “Huh? You— What? You told them? You did?”

Wonwoo finally tears his eyes away from the to look at Mingyu, his brown eyes softening, lips tugging up into a small grin at Mingyu’s nervous stuttering. “I’m sorry. I just. They kept pestering me. It… felt right. I’m sorry—“

Mingyu shakes his head and tries to control himself, knowing that Wonwoo isn’t a fan of PDA but he leans in anyway, not quite hugging the older but still hiding his face in his shoulder. He feels Wonwoo tense up before there’s a hand on Mingyu’s back, rubbing up and down soothingly. “Don’t apologize. That… makes me so happy, hyung.”

“Yeah?” Wonwoo mumbles softly, lips grazing Mingyu’s ears.

“So happy.” Mingyu turns his head, pressing a tender kiss against Wonwoo’s pulse, smiling in surprise at how the kiss makes Wonwoo shudder.

When he remembers where they are, he pulls away from the hug, looking up to see the girls looking at them with smiles on their faces, Joohyun looking way fonder than she probably intended to look.

“This is so weird,” She says after clearing her throat. “I honestly never thought I’d see the day. Wonwoo being affectionate. Showing actual emotions. Wow.”

Seulgi agrees, staring at her cousin with something like pride. “You’re totally whipped.”

Okay. Like you’re one to talk,” Wonwoo answers with a scowl, taking a rather annoyed sip from his coke.

“When did I ever deny being whipped for my beautiful girlfriend?” Seulgi asks, tilting her head innocently.

“Well, I never denied anything either,” Wonwoo says, making Joohyun shake her head in disbelief and Mingyu blush all over the place.

“Totally got him wrapped around your finger,” Seulgi says, looking at Mingyu. “Thanks for cracking him open.”

Mingyu shakes his head, laughing nervously. “I didn’t do anything. Don’t know what he sees in me, to be honest.”

Wonwoo squeezes his hand, pulls him closer. “Stop.”

Seulgi squeals, Joohyun looks mildly disgusted, but Mingyu knows it’s all just an act.

Their food arrives, luckily, before Mingyu can start crying again. He doesn’t know how he got here, what he did to deserve this happiness, but his heart feels so full, watching his friends laugh and chat over dinner in this small restaurant. It’s a cold winter night outside, but they’re tucked away in the warmth inside, soft music playing in the background, and Wonwoo never really stops touching him.

Keeps a hand on Mingyu’s thigh, brushes hair out of his face, has his arm slung around the back of the seat so his hand can curl around Mingyu’s shoulder on the other side. None of it is done in a clingy way. It’s like a silent reassurance, for both of them, that they’re together and that they want to be together, and maybe to make sure that they’re not going anywhere. Mingyu didn’t know how much he needed this.

For someone he cares on such a deep level to return those feelings, to show how much they want to be with him. No one’s ever done that before.

It just makes his heart grow impossibly bigger in his chest.

And they laugh together, all four of them, happy and on the side of the people that mean so much to them.

Against all odds, here they are.

Joohyun meets his eyes at one point while Wonwoo and Seulgi are arguing over how GIF is supposed to be pronounced.

Mingyu looks at her, the happy glint in her eyes, the smile on her face, remembers the last time he saw her all those months ago.

Remembers hugging her goodbye, when she’d felt so small and cold in his arms, tired and scared.

It almost seems like a lifetime away now.

Joohyun smiles at him, and Mingyu smiles back.

She’s happy, and Mingyu couldn’t be more thankful, because she deserves this so much.

They all do; Joohyun, Seulgi, Wonwoo.

Their own happy endings, even if it’s just the start. 


Wonwoo’s phone starts vibrating a while later when the restaurant is fairly deserted and Mingyu can hear the hustle of the employees slowly starting to clean up as their closing time approaches.

They all seem reluctant to leave.

It was some sort of an escape, even if just for a few hours.

Like a piece of home, like they were sitting in a small barbecue place in Cheumsan on a warm summer night, drinking beer and laughing at Seokmin’s jokes.

That’s the strange thing about the village; it was like a cage for these people, for Wonwoo, Joohyun, and Seulgi, yet Mingyu knows they miss it.

Mingyu misses it, too.

“I guess we should get going,” Wonwoo speaks up after checking his phone and sending a message. “Yerim had night classes and asked me to pick her up, so.”

Joohyun nods. “It’s getting late anyway.”

Separating is hard. Mingyu’s bad at goodbyes, but it’s gotten worse ever since he visited his grandmother last summer.

He’s come to despise them, more or less.

Joohyun chuckles at the hint of a pout pulling at Mingyu’s lips once they’re standing outside the restaurant, the cold air around them making them all shiver and clouds form at every exhale. 

“Don’t look like that,” Joohyun says, stepping closer to pull him into a hug. “You have my number now. We can meet up whenever you want.”

Mingyu nods, his hand absentmindedly playing with her pony tail. “If you disappear again, I will personally have to hunt you down, and I’m clumsy and clueless, so I will probably get myself killed in the process so. Unless you want my ass dead, don’t go anywhere, okay?”

Joohyun snorts and gently slaps the back of his head. “Are you threatening me? I don’t like following orders, you know.”

Mingyu grins and pulls away. “Yeah, yeah, I know.”

“We’re not going anywhere,” Joohyun says with a sigh. “At least not for a while, right, honey?”

Seulgi grabs Joohyun’s hand and nods with a smile.

And so they go their separate ways, with Mingyu trying to convince himself that this isn’t going to be the last time he’ll see them, especially when he turns to shoot them a look over his shoulder, and finds Joohyun doing the same.

She sticks out her tongue at him.

Wonwoo rolls his eyes, Mingyu smiles, all the way back to the car.

He shudders when he climbs back inside, and Wonwoo thankfully is quick to start the engine and turn on the heater.

He doesn’t immediately pull out of the parking lot, instead glances at Mingyu, who catches the older boy’s eyes and starts smiling.

“You’re happy,” Wonwoo quietly says, the look in his eyes warming Mingyu up way faster than the lousy heating inside the car.

“I can’t believe— Fuck, hyung, I can’t believe we just saw them? I don’t know why but I just imagined I’d never see Joohyun and Seulgi again and here they are, sitting in that restaurant like it’s nothing— Hyung!”

Wonwoo laughs quietly, his eyes fondly taking in Mingyu’s excitement. “They were really excited to see you, too. And like Joohyun said, you can hang out whenever you want. We’re not in the village anymore, yeah?”

“I know. Fuck, this is awesome.” Mingyu calms down a little, sighs deeply. “I’m so happy for them.”

Wonwoo smiles as he pulls out of the parking lot, and Mingyu fiddles with the radio until he gets to a channel with a good connection. It’s a soft tune, the singer’s voice deep and warm as he sings about a lost love.

Mingyu hums along to the song, and watches the city lights once they’re off the highway. It’s when he starts seeing familiar buildings that he gets torn out of his haze, remembering why he was so upset earlier, and why Wonwoo picked him up halfway frozen from the park.

He doesn’t want to go home.

He doesn’t want to deal with Jihoon’s stubborn, hurt pride.

Mingyu slowly pulls his phone out, not having checked it ever since Wonwoo picked him up, and sees a few missed calls and messages from his hyungs as well as from Eunwoo.

He opens the messages from the latter.


From Eunwoo:

- where are you???

- cheol hyung called me all upset and shit

- go back home baby

- your hyungs are worried


Mingyu sighs and messages him back, trying to ignore the ache in his chest. He hates fighting with anyone, much less with the people he considers to be his brothers, but he’s hurt, and he’s tired, and he just doesn’t want to deal with it tonight.


To Eunwoo:

- i’m out with wonwoo

- are you busy?



Eunwoo texts back almost immediately.



From Eunwoo:

- no

- just got back home from my date

- wanna come over???



To Eunwoo:

- yes pls

- can i stay the night?


From Eunwoo:

- obviously

- i’ll let hyungs know you’re with me



To Eunwoo:

- thank u i love you


From Eunwoo:

- love you too babe


Mingyu puts his phone away and gnaws on his lower lip for a while, feeling Wonwoo glance at him a few times, obviously not having missed him typing on his phone.

“Hyung can you—“ Mingyu clears his throat. “Not drop me off at home, please?”

Wonwoo frowns. “Where then? It’s late.”

Oh man…

“I’m going to stay with Eunwoo.”

Wonwoo doesn’t really react to his words, just keeps driving with his gaze firmly set on the road ahead.

His voice has changed when he speaks again. It’s deeper, and more guarded. “Why?”

Mingyu gulps nervously and shrugs his shoulders. “I don’t want to go home. I’m not in the mood for another scolding.”

“I’m sure your hyungs regret what happened. You not going home won’t resolve anything, Mingyu.”

“I know that,” Mingyu mumbles. “I will talk to them tomorrow. Just… not tonight.”

Wonwoo’s grip tightens on the steering wheel. “Can’t you go somewhere else? Stay with someone else?”

Mingyu sighs. “Like who? I can hardly stay with you, can I?”

He doesn’t mean to say it like that. He doesn’t know why he does, but Wonwoo flinches a little, and Mingyu immediately regrets his words. “I’m sorry— Hyung I didn’t—“

“It’s fine,” Wonwoo interrupts quietly. “It’s the truth.”

“Hyung, no.”

“Where does Eunwoo live?” Wonwoo asks, ignoring him. “You have to give me directions, I still don’t know my way around that well.”

The sudden tension in the air feels mildly suffocating.

When Wonwoo stops the car in front of Eunwoo’s apartment complex, he doesn’t turn off the engine, which makes Mingyu’s chest hurt, because that’s a clear sign for him to get the fuck out.

He unbuckles his seatbelt and turns to look at the older, his heart aching when he sees Wonwoo staring down at his lap, hands still tight around the steering wheel. “Hyung, please. I don’t want to fight.”

Wonwoo doesn’t react. He grits his teeth together and turns to stare out the windows, his body turning away from Mingyu, and Mingyu deflates in his seat.

Suddenly, they’re back in the village. Fighting in Wonwoo’s car, Wonwoo spitting out hurtful words, to the point where Mingyu made him stop the car so he could leave.

The memory hurts.

But as Mingyu sits here and looks at the boy beside him, he just knows that this isn’t the same Wonwoo anymore. He knows Wonwoo changed, that he worked hard to control his emotions and be more open and honest, but—

Well, it still hurts.

Because Wonwoo is shutting him out, won’t even look at him, and really, Mingyu isn’t sure anymore if all the assurance in the world would ever make him stop being scared of Wonwoo suddenly changing his mind and leaving him.

“Thank you for driving me,” Mingyu mumbles, barely above a whisper, not really sure he can control his voice when Wonwoo is just blatantly ignoring him like this.

Mingyu waits for another second, just hoping for Wonwoo to move or do something, but when nothing happens, he opens the door and quickly climbs out before he can start crying again.

All he wants right now is to go to sleep and maybe get some cuddles from Eunwoo if his friend feels nice enough tonight, because today was a rollercoaster of emotions, and Mingyu is just exhausted.

He embraces the feeling though. It means a night full of rest. Lots of sleep. Mingyu is desperate for some good shut-eye.

When he’s almost reached the apartment complex, he hears the sound of a car door being slammed shut, followed by footsteps approaching him, and Mingyu stops walking, turns around to see Wonwoo standing in front of him.

They just stand there, staring at each other, and it’s ridiculous that they’re doing this.

Mingyu thought they were past the stage of constantly hurting each other, but he guesses that was wishful thinking.

That’s just not how relationships work. Mingyu should know that.

“I’m not mad, Gyu,” Wonwoo mutters after what feels like minutes. “I’m just…” He stops, his throat working as he grits his teeth, and then he curses and looks to the side with a pained expression. “Look, I’m being an ass for no reason. I’m sorry. It’s just— freaking Eunwoo. Gets under my skin.”

“Hyung, he’s my friend.”

“I really don’t like him.” Wonwoo purses his lips, almost forming a pout despite the rather angry furrow of his eyebrows.

He’s jealous.

Mingyu looks at the older for a few seconds, expecting himself to get annoyed at Wonwoo’s whole jealous boyfriend behaviour, but that doesn’t happen.

Instead, he sees the blanketed hurt and fear in Wonwoo’s eyes, hidden behind all that coldness and anger.

Mingyu feels his heart soften and his eyes sting with how much love he has for this person. It makes him feel so vulnerable and stupid, but it also makes him feel more alive than he ever has. “I know you don’t like Eunwoo that much. But Wonwoo hyung, Eunwoo has a boyfriend and I have one, too.” Mingyu gives him a meaningful look, watches Wonwoo blush a little. “My boyfriend is a little bit stubborn, but he treats me so well, and I’m crazy about him, so I hope he trusts me and doesn’t doubt my feelings for him.”

Wonwoo looks at him, a bitter smile tugging on his lips. “You should be able to stay at my place in these situations. I should be there for you.”

“But that’s not possible. At least not for now. I don’t blame you for that, hyung. And if it makes you feel any better, I would love nothing more than to cuddle up next to you and sleep with you tonight. I sleep the best in your arms. You know that.”

Wonwoo’s features soften at that, his warm brown eyes so incredibly fond it makes Mingyu feel breathless. “I know.”

And then he steps closer and pulls Mingyu into a hug, tight and warm and safe and Mingyu immediately melts into his arms, closes his eyes and buries his face in Wonwoo’s warm neck. “You okay now?” 

Wonwoo sighs. “Yeah. Sorry about that. I’m still… uhm. Kind of figuring my shit out.”

Mingyu smiles and pulls back, enough to peck Wonwoo’s cheek, which bunch up in a shy smile at the gesture. “I know. And you’re doing good. I’m proud of you.”

Wonwoo laughs quietly swats his side. “Shut up.”

“You should go,” Mingyu whispers, but tightens his hands on Wonwoo’s jacket nonetheless. “Don’t keep Yerim waiting.”

Wonwoo nods and licks his lips. “Alright. Go get some sleep.”

“I will. You too.” Mingyu gives his boyfriend a private smile, feels Wonwoo’s arms tighten around him as he steps closer, the air between them warming up. The tiny action makes Mingyu’s gut stir, his thighs tingling when Wonwoo is suddenly close enough for his warm breath to brush over Mingyu’s lips. Wonwoo licks his lips again and Mingyu can’t help but whine, the sound surprising the older and making Mingyu close his eyes in embarrassment. “God,” Mingyu breathes, laughing nervously, because it’s not normal how his body reacts to the boy, how much he craves his touch and kisses, all the time.

Wonwoo smirks and shakes his head, and then pulls Mingyu in until their lips press together in a kiss. Mingyu sighs into it, sags against Wonwoo while their lips move smoothly, Wonwoo’s lips soft like butter against Mingyu’s. Wonwoo kisses him languidly, dragging the movements of their lips, like he’s trying to savour the feeling of Mingyu’s mouth on his own. Mingyu whines in protest when Wonwoo pulls back, and Wonwoo gives in easily, pecking Mingyu’s lips one last time.

“Won’t ever get tired of doing that,” Mingyu mumbles stupidly, a dopey smile tugging on his reddened lips.

Wonwoo grins, his nose scrunching, and reaches up to gently tap Mingyu’s chin as he shakes his head. “Go inside before you catch a cold.”

Mingyu sighs and nods his head as they separate. “Text me when you’re home?”

“I will.” Wonwoo is already walking backwards. “Goodnight, sleepyhead.”

“Night, hyung.”

He watches Wonwoo get back in the car, wait for the older to drive off, which he doesn’t do, so Mingyu makes a confused face, until it hits him that Wonwoo is waiting for him to go inside.

Mingyu quickly does so, and once he’s inside the building, turns to look outside, seeing Wonwoo finally drive off when Mingyu is inside safely.

He’s a grown man. Nothing would happen to him, especially not the few feet it took him to get inside the apartment.

But just the thought of Wonwoo caring to the point of doing stuff like this, makes Mingyu’s heart swell infinitely.

Eunwoo asks about his day, about his fight with Jihoon, about Wonwoo, and in return talks about his new boyfriend like a lovesick puppy.

“Seems like we both found some pretty amazing people, huh?”

“Seems like it,” Mingyu mumbles sleepily. “It kind of scares me.”

Eunwoo looks down at him, his hand stilling in Mingyu’s hair. “What does?”

Mingyu shrugs. “That it’ll all be ripped away from me. The happiness.”

His friend doesn’t speak for a few seconds before he lets out a sigh continues petting Mingyu’s hair. “That’s not a healthy way of thinking, Gyu. You’ve got to live in the now and here, at least for matters you have no control over. Just enjoy your time with Wonwoo. Make each other happy. The rest will just happen, and you’ll take it one step at a time, yeah?”

Mingyu thinks about this for a moment before smiling and reaching up to pat his cheek. “So wise, Eunwoo.”

“Shut up. You know I’m right.”

“Yeah. Yeah you are,” Mingyu mumbles. “Thank you, man.”

Eunwoo hums and squeezes his hand, and they continue watching the movie.

Mingyu ends up falling asleep on his friend’s couch, his legs tangled with Eunwoo’s own, the movie on the TV long forgotten as he’s pulled into a dreamless sleep.




Wonwoo might’ve had a point, about how him avoiding his hyungs wasn’t going to solve anything.

When Mingyu finally gets over himself and decides to go home the following night after having spent the day playing Mario Cart with Eunwoo, the sigh of a tired looking Seungcheol greets him as he enters the living room.

“Gyu,” is the first thing his best friend says.

“Hey, hyung,” Mingyu mumbles, feeling stupid and ashamed. “How’s it going?”

Seungcheol gives him a baffled look before smiling weakly, shaking his head. “I can’t believe you. I really want to be mad at you but… I can’t.”

“I’m sorry.” Mingyu shrugs his shoulders, fiddling with the hem of his shirt. “I just. Needed some space.”

Seungcheol nods his head and watches Mingyu walk over to the couch on the other side, sitting down slowly. “He’s really sorry, you know.”

Mingyu can imagine. “Where is he?”

“Got some classes tonight. He should be here soon.” Seungcheol carefully looks Mingyu up and down. “Are you okay?”

“Yeah. I’m fine.” Mingyu shrugs and lets out a sigh. “It was stupid, the fight. I know hyung didn’t mean it. But I just… I didn’t need that. Not when I was so happy about having Wonwoo back.”

Seungcheol nods his head and purses his lips. “Don’t forget about the part where you lied to us about Eunwoo and you dating.”

Mingyu pulls a pained face. “Uhm. Yeah. How could I forget?”

“Well,” Seungcheol mutters. “Shit happens. I guess we all can take things away from this, yeah? Hoon and I gotta stop being so goddamn nosy, and you need to learn how to stop making stupid ass decisions. Like getting yourself a fake boyfriend.”

Mingyu meets Seungcheol’s gaze, and they stare at each other for a moment, before starting to laugh at the same time.

The moment gets interrupted by the front door opening, Mingyu’s smile fading as his body tenses up.

Jihoon looks very tired, and Mingyu can’t do anything about the immediate concern flaring in his chest. When his eyes land on Mingyu however, the exhaustion is replaced by something that looks a lot like relief.

“Wow, would you look at the time? I should go.”

“Go where?” Mingyu asks.

“Places. Stop being nosy. I’m older than you.” With that, Seungcheol gets up, pecks a perplexed looking Jihoon on the mouth and proceeds to walk into his bedroom, closing the door rather noisily.

“Your boyfriend’s weird,” Mingyu mumbles after a few seconds filled with tense silence.

Jihoon snorts softly, awkward as ever. “He sure is.”

Mingyu nibbles on his lower lip nervously, both of them standing in the living room like idiots, acting like idiots, because apparently, that’s just what they are.



They stare at each other again. “You go first,” Mingyu offers.

Jihoon nods and steps a little closer, clearing his throat as he sits down next to Mingyu, leaving some space between them. “I was. Uhm. Worried about you. Where did you go?”

Mingyu stares at the floor for a moment. “I was with Wonwoo hyung. And then he dropped me off at Eunwoo’s place.”

“Yeah, he told me,” Jihoon answers. “Not… that you were with him, but, you know.”

“You know his name. You can use it, you know?”

“I’d rather not.”

Mingyu laughs without any humour behind it. “Why are you like this? I mean— I know why, but you haven’t even met him. Why won’t you give him a chance?”

“Beats me,” Jihoon mutters, which only irritates Mingyu more.

“Really, hyung? The things you said really hurt me, you know? And Wonwoo he— I mean yeah, I was upset for a while, as everyone would be after getting their heart broken. But Wonwoo wasn’t doing any better. He’s not the villain in this. We both were at fault. People make mistakes, and they learn from them. Wonwoo is really important to me, hyung."

Jihoon has been patiently listening to him talk, his eyes focused on Mingyu. He doesn’t say anything for a minute, before sighing and leaning back on the couch. “I want to meet him.”

“Oh. Sure. Okay.”

“That doesn’t mean I approve of this. Not that you give a shit about my opinion anyways but…” Jihoon purses his lips and gives a weak shrug. “If this dude means that much to you, who the heck am I to give you crap for that? I mean. You seem happier. And if he plays part in that, then well. That’s really… all I can ask for.”

Mingyu offers a small smile. “Thank you, hyung.”

Jihoon grunts, looking away, before facing him again. “You know the only reason I keep acting like an asshole is cause I care about you, right kid?”

Mingyu nods. “I know. I’m sorry I cursed you out.”

“Nothing to be sorry for, Gyu. I was being a dick. I’m the one who should apologize.” Jihoon looks at him like a kicked puppy and who the fuck could stay mad at this person?

Mingyu shuffles closer and wraps his arms around his hyung, pulling him into a hug and smiling contently when Jihoon wraps his own arms around Mingyu. “I love you, hyung.”

Jihoon sighs and pats his head. “Love you, too, kid.”

The door of Seungcheol’s bedroom bursts open, his friend walking in with a careful smile. “I hear I love yous being exchanged? Are we good here? You two made up? I don’t have to chose between my best friend and boyfriend anymore?”

“You’re an idiot, you know that, Cheol?” Jihoon flatly asks after pulling away from the hug.

Seungcheol pouts, and Mingyu laughs, opening his arms for his friend.

Not a second later, Seungcheol throws himself on them, Mingyu and Jihoon groaning, which soon enough turns into laughter.

“Invite him over,” Jihoon suddenly says, making their laughter stop.

Mingyu freezes and lightly pushes at Seungcheol’s shoulder so he can sit up straight again. “W-What?”

“You heard me, kid,” Jihoon mumbles as he sits up too. “Call Wonwoo, and tell him to come here.”

Mingyu starts sweating. “Isn’t it a little sudden? I mean, he might be busy.”

“There’s only one way to find out, yeah? Call him.”

Mingyu shoots Seungcheol a helpless look, who only shrugs his shoulders and grins. Mingyu doesn’t appreciate that.

“I’d like to meet him, too, Gyu. The sooner we get this over with, the better, yeah?”

“Alright,” Mingyu mutters under his breath, standing up and walking into his bedroom so he can call Wonwoo.

He’s nervous and bites on his lower lip for the few seconds it takes Wonwoo to pick up. He sounds like he’s in a good mood, and that automatically makes Mingyu feel more calm. He tells Wonwoo what’s going on, and his boyfriend seems taken aback for a second, and then asks Mingyu if he wants them to meet each other or if he’s just being respectful towards his hyungs, to which Mingyu says yes, and that’s really all that Wonwoo needs to agree.

Has Mingyu ever mentioned how much he adores his boyfriend?



Wonwoo shows up at their apartment an hour later, holding bags of what looks to be take out food in his hands.

Mingyu’s lips stretch into a wide smile as he ushers him inside. “Chicken?”

“I… had no idea what to get them,” Wonwoo quietly mumbles so the others don’t hear him. He hands Mingyu the bags and slips out of his coat, Mingyu getting a whiff of his musky cologne that makes his legs feel a little weak. “Shit, I’m nervous.”

Mingyu pouts at that and pulls him closer. “It’ll be fine. They’re amazing. And I know they will love you, so please don’t be scared, okay?”

Wonwoo takes a deep breath and nods. “Yeah. Okay. I just. Don’t know. Feels like I’m meeting my boyfriend’s parents.” He laughs. “I want to make a good impression.” 

Mingyu can’t help himself. He leans in, and kisses Wonwoo, slowly and languidly. Wonwoo looks a bit dazed when Mingyu pulls away. “I told you they will love you. Just be you.”

Wonwoo bites down on his lips and grins, nodding his head. Mingyu takes his hand and leads him inside, putting the bags down on the dinner table.

“Guys,” Mingyu says, looking at Jihoon and Seuncheol who have gotten up from the couch and are basically just staring Wonwoo down. “This is Wonwoo. Wonwoo, that’s Seungcheol hyung, my roommate and best friend, and that next to him is his boyfriend Jihoon hyung, my other best friend.”

They greet each other rather stiffly, and Mingyu wishes they weren’t being so awkward.

“He brought fried chicken,” Mingyu tries again, and doesn’t miss the way Seungcheol’s eyes light up at that.

So yeah.

They start to eat, and it’s not… it’s not awful.

Seungcheol tries his best to distract everyone from the daggers Jihoon keeps shooting at Wonwoo across the dinner table, or the fact that he has yet to talk to Wonwoo in any shape or form, and for that Mingyu is infinitely thankful to his friend.

Seungcheol brings some beer from the fridge, which helps everyone losen up, and it eventually feels like friends hanging out together more than anything.

Mingyu holds Wonwoo’s hand under the table, because he can tell how tense Wonwoo still is, especially because of how hostile Jihoon is being towards him.

He can’t help but feel guilty. He’s the one who cried over how much Wonwoo hurt him to his hyungs, when really, Wonwoo was hurting because of him, too.

Wonwoo doesn’t deserve this treatment.

“Jihoon hyung,” Mingyu says after a while. “You’re being quiet.”

Jihoon glances at him, eyes narrowed. “Nothing much to say.”

“It’s kind of rude, that’s all.”

Seungcheol chokes on his beer, and Wonwoo glances at Mingyu, squeezing his hand, telling him to stop.

“Oh, is it, now?”

“Yes. You haven’t spoken a word with Wonwoo hyung.”

“He hasn’t spoken to me either, has he?”

Wonwoo tenses up next to him, and it makes Mingyu angry. He loves Jihoon, but he also loves Wonwoo, and he doesn’t like how Jihoon is treating him.

“Because you’ve practically got back off tattooed on your forehead. You’re the one who wanted to meet him so why are you being like this?”

“Mingyu, it’s okay,” Wonwoo whispers, even though Mingyu can tell that his boyfriend is irritated. He’s just staying calm so he doesn’t cause a scene.

“Do you know why I don’t particularly like you?” Jihoon suddenly asks, addressing Wonwoo for the first time, who calmly meets Jihoon’s gaze.

“I can imagine, yeah.”

“So you also understand why I’m having a hard time just letting you into our group.”

“Yeah, I do.”

“Are you going to do anything about it?”

Wonwoo clears his throat. “All I can do is prove to you that I really care about Mingyu. So if you could give me a chance to do that, that would be nice.”

“I don’t give second chances.”

“If I screw up, you’re welcome to kick my ass.” Wonwoo sighs and averts his eyes for a moment, until Mingyu squeezes his hand, and Wonwoo turns to look at him, the tension bleeding out from his shoulders.

The table is silent for a moment, before Jihoon suddenly picks his beer up and clears his throat.

“The only reason I was being a dickhead is cause I care about this kid.” He points at Mingyu. “And kicking your ass will be the nicest thing I’ll do to you if you do him wrong.”

“Alright, can we not?” Mingyu snorts. “I’m a grown guy, okay? I can take care of myself. I do bench presses.”

The other three look at Mingyu, and then they laugh, and that’s that.

Jihoon even smiles at Wonwoo at some point.

And just like that, Wonwoo becomes part of their group, and Mingyu’s heart feels ten times lighter.




Over the next weeks, Wonwoo hangs out with them more often, and Mingyu feels like Jihoon and hime actually get along pretty well. They’re both rather introverted, and they both love playing video games, so sometimes Mingyu gets back home from classes to find his best friend and boyfriend yelling over some silly video game.

It’s heart warming, seeing his friends accept his boyfriend with open arms like that, despite the rocky start they had.

Wonwoo and him hang out with Yerim a few times, and go out to the cinema with Joohyun and Seulgi.

While things aren’t perfect, they’re certainly better, and it’s almost too good to be true.

Mingyu simply tries to think of what Eunwoo told him that night.




But… things were too good to be true.

It’s January now.

Two weeks ago, they celebrated New Year’s Eve.

His friends, Wonwoo, even Seulgi and Joohyun, they all went to a party that was thrown by this rich guy from Jihoon’s college. It was nice. They all got pretty drunk, and things got a little tense when Eunwoo started getting all up in Mingyu’s space, and it was fun, cause they were drunk and dancing and everyone was having fun.

Wonwoo though? Not so much.

Joohyun looked like she really wanted to throw her drink in his face for him sulking in the corner like that and looking like he really wanted to kick Eunwoo in his balls.

Eunwoo found it amusing, and he kept teasing Wonwoo further, until Wonwoo really didn’t play along anymore.

What Mingyu found out that night is, that jealous Wonwoo, equals in possessive Wonwoo, so he found himself pressed against the wall of a random bedroom ten minutes before midnight, Wonwoo sucking a massive bruise into his neck that would be visible to everyone, practically marking him.

Maybe Mingyu should’ve hated him for that smug look on his face, but it really just made him love Wonwoo that much more.

It’s a Saturday.

Wonwoo worked the whole day, went home to shower before he cam to pick up Mingyu cause he’d asked his boyfriend to drive him to the grocery store since Jihoon and Seungcheol were out on their weekly date and took the car.

“Hey, I’ve got to find something for Yerim. Gluten free bagels? Have any idea where that is? Or what the fuck that is?”

Mingyu snorts. “You should probably check the baked goods section, hm? What does she want with those, anyway?”

“Beats me,” Wonwoo mutters. “She’s trying some sort of new diet. Apparently all her friends from college are on it. She’s gotten spoiled since we came here. As if she could’ve asked for bagels back in the village, let alone gluten free ones.”

Mingyu laughs. “Just go get her the bagels, hyung."

“Yeah, yeah. Give me that.” Wonwoo reaches for the half full basket Mingyu is holding.

“I’m not weak, you know, hyung? You don’t have to carry stuff for me.”

“What kind of boyfriend would I be if I made you carry things?”

“Well, I could say the same thing. I’m your boyfriend, too.”

“Yeah, but I’m older.” Wonwoo winks at him before walking off, Mingyu watching him with a stupid smile on his face.

It’s a night like any other.

But then, when Mingyu is simply making his way to the fruit isle, he spots him.

Tall, broad shoulders, shirt tucked into dress pants.

Shiny Rolex on one arm, golden wedding ring snugly fit around his left ring finger.

Reaching for the organic apples, because they’re healthier, in his opinion.


“You need to stop going for the cheaper options. Have you ever asked yourself why exactly there are cheap and expensive options for fruits?”

Mingyu feels himself duck in embarrassment, not liking the tone of the older man’s voice. It always makes him feel like he’s being scolded, like he’s stupid and naive. “I know that, alright? But I can’t afford—“

“The organic fruits are more expensive because growing them needs more care and effort instead of just spraying the fruit with toxic pesticides, which are not only harmful to you when you eat it but also to the environment.”

“I’m… aware.”

“Then why are you still buying it?”

“I just paid rent—“

“Put them back, Mingyu.”

So Mingyu does, face heating up at the confused look he gets from the lady next to them who happened to overhear their conversation.

What a strange sight this must be. A grown boy being ordered around by an older man like that.


But Mingyu did what Hongbin told him to do, without putting up a fight, like a trained puppy. Cause that’s how Hongbin had liked him best; pliant and obedient.

Lee Hongbin.

Out on a Saturday evening, grocery shopping, such a mundane thing, but it makes Mingyu’s mind reel.

He hasn’t seen the man in months, years, even. Almost like he’d forgotten all about his existence, or just blanked out that fact to make life easier for him.

And this, this feeling, was the exact reason Mingyu had tried so hard to forget about this man. Like he can’t breathe, like he’s a clueless child, like he’s worthless, like a plaything.

Mingyu swallows heavily and turns to walk away, as far away as he can, because he can’t risk the other man spotting him—


Mingyu freezes instantly, his body locking up hearing that familiar voice again. He doesn’t turn around, but his breathing gets a bit hastier as he hears the footsteps approaching him from behind.

“Mingyu, is that you?”

Mingyu squeezes his eyes shut, willing himself to just walk away, to leave, like this asshole left him.

But when he opens his eyes, Hongbin is already standing in front of him, the uncertainty on his face morphing into one of recognition.

His beard is trimmed perfectly, eyebrows sharp, eyes dark and intense as ever. He’s perfectly handsome, but Mingyu feels nothing looking at him.

He has a new definition a beauty and Wonwoo has set the standards too high for anyone else.

No one could compare in Mingyu’s eyes.

And right now, Mingyu wants nothing more but to turn around and find his boyfriend—

“Mingyu,” Hongbin says, his eyes subtly flickering over Mingyu’s face, his body. He clears his throat, politely focusing on Mingyu’s eyes again. While that look used to make Mingyu’s skin erupt in goosebumps for a whole lot of different reason, he now just feels uncomfortable and disgusted. “It’s been a while.”

“It has,” Mingyu answers, taking pride in how steady his voice sounds.

Hongbin nods and glances around the store, probably making sure no one’s watching them. Mingyu wants to smile bitterly at this. Nothing’s changed. The man hasn’t changed one bit. He’s still embarrassed to be seen out and about with Mingyu, even now, when they are absolutely nothing, mean nothing to each other, just faded memories filled with hurt and regret.

“How have you been?”

“Great,” Mingyu answers before the man can even finish his sentence. “And you? How are the wife and kids?”

Hongbin visibly cringes at that. He lowers his head, a sigh leaving his lips. “Listen, Mingyu. Can we go somewhere and talk?”

That takes Mingyu by surprise. Throws him off, his resolution crumbling. “You want to talk?”

“That’s what I said, yes,” Hongbin calmly responds.

“What could you possibly want to talk to me about?!”

“You know what.”

“No, I fucking don’t!” Mingyu snaps at them man, unable to contain the sudden flare of irritation. “We have absolutely nothing to talk about. You made yourself pretty fucking clear back then, so back the fuck off.”

“Language, Mingyu,” Hongbin mutters in that voice.

Mingyu freezes, sucks in a breath, and suddenly feels like he’s a freshman in college again, clueless and gullible and stupid and naive, falling for this man like a fool.

The words are on the tip of his tongue, like a knee-jerk reaction, wanting to apologize for being bad, when he hears his name being called, and it snaps Mingyu out that haze.

His heart starts racing, and he turns his head, sighing in relief when he sees Wonwoo approaching them with their basket, his eyes focused on Mingyu and immediately filling with worry when he takes in Mingyu’s distressed state.

Wonwoo then looks at Hongbin, and Mingyu doesn’t know how he does it, because Mingyu had only briefly mentioned Hongbin to Wonwoo, and that was way back in the village when they were only getting to know each other, but Wonwoo seems to connect the dots, and his eyes harden immediately.

He steps up next to Mingyu and reaches down to take Mingyu’s hand, lacing their fingers together tightly, still staring at Hongbin.

“Is there a problem here?”

Hongbin stares at them silently, a hint of confusion and irritation flaring in his eyes. “And who are you?”

Mingyu tightens his hand on Wonwoo’s, not liking how Hongbin is trying to stare him down. The man can do that pretty well, and Mingyu just wants Wonwoo to know that he’s so much more than this man could ever be.

“I’m Mingyu’s boyfriend,” Wonwoo answers firmly. “Should I know who you are?”

Hongbin glances at Mingyu and Wonwoo pulls him closer, his jaw tightening angrily. “We’re… old friends.”

“How nice,” Wonwoo mutters. He looks like he’s ready to throw a punch and that’s absolutely the last thing Mingyu wants to happen, so he tugs on Wonwoo’s hand a little, who finally snaps out of it and turns to face him.

“Let’s go, please.”

Wonwoo’s eyes are still hard and he’s raging on the inside, but he nods his head, and starts walking away, keeping Mingyu close, and shoots Hongbin one last heated glare.

“Mingyu,” Hongbin calls after him. “Don’t walk away from me.”

It makes Mingyu flinch, with in turn makes Wonwoo growl and slow his steps, his body starting to turn away from Mingyu like he’s about to go back to the man. “Listen here asshole—“

Mingyu stops him, grips his wrist and pulls. “Hyung, please. Please, fuck, don’t— I can’t— I can’t deal with this right now. Please.”

Wonwoo swears under his breath, and it takes him a few seconds to calm down, but in the end, the pleading words and the fear in Mingyu’s voice seems to be enough for him to suppress his anger and keep walking.

They don’t talk while they scan the items on the self check-out, Wonwoo doing most of the work as Mingyu is still a little too out of it from the unexpected encounter with the man who’d used him and threw him away like he was nothing but trash.

Wonwoo grabs all the heavy bags with one hand, and slides his other into Mingyu’s hand, his touch comforting and safe as he leads the younger out of the shop and back to his car.

It’s not until they’re sitting in their seats and Wonwoo closes the door that Mingyu sags into himself.

“Fuck,” he whispers as he bends down to press his forehead against the dashboard of the car. His heart’s still racing, his hands trembling, and he feels like he might just throw up.

Wonwoo carefully places his hand on Mingyu’s neck, his palm warm against the skin, and starts carding his fingers through Mingyu’s hair. “You okay?”

Mingyu nods, even though he’s really not, but he will be. He just needs a moment. Needs to process what the fuck just happened, and why it happened. “Who does he— Who does he think he is?”

Wonwoo’s hand tightens and Mingyu wishes he would’ve just shut up. He doesn’t want to fuel Wonwoo’s anger even further. “You should’ve let me hurt him a little.”

It makes Mingyu crack a smile despite everything. “He probably has enough connections to get you in jail for touching him.”

“Don’t care. I really wanted to rip him a new one. Fucking dickhead with his tacky ass Rolex. Should’ve shoved that up his ass, too.”

Mingyu laughs and lifts his head. “Stop.”

Wonwoo looks him in the eyes and sighs, bringing his hand up to cup his cheek gently. “You good?”

Mingyu shrugs and leans into Wonwoo’s touch. “I’m okay. I’m over it, I really am, it’s just…. it was unexpected. It was just scary that he tried to pull that on me again.”

Wonwoo closes his eyes and shakes his head. “Look can we… talk about this at home? I’m really about to go back in there and I don’t want—“

“Yeah let’s go,” Mingyu says. “Let’s just go.”



Mingyu is glad that Seungcheol and Jihoon are out on their traditional Saturday night date, because he doesn’t need them to know about this, doesn’t need Jihoon to go ballistic like Wonwoo almost did when he hears about him running into Hongbin.

They put the groceries away mostly in silence, but Wonwoo keeps shooting him worried glances, gently moving Mingyu out of the way when he needs to reach a cupboard, and Mingyu gives a tiny smile when Wonwoo presses a kiss into his hair while walking past him.

Once they’re done putting the groceries away, Mingyu sits down on a chair at the dinner table, a sigh leaving his lips.

Wonwoo sits down on top of the table, facing Mingyu while a carefully looks at him,

Mingyu can feel the older’s gaze even though he’s not meeting his eyes. “I’m fine, hyung. I promise.”

“What did he say to you?”


“Mingyu. It really upset you.”

Mingyu slowly shakes his head. “I don’t know what he was trying to do. Like why— who does that? We haven’t seen each other in years and the second he sees me he tries to c-control me, I mean—“

Wonwoo moves and cradles Mingyu’s face before he can work himself into a frenzy. “Hey, Mingyu. It’s okay. Calm down, yeah? It’s alright.” 

Mingyu closes his eyes and nods his head. “It was scary, hyung.”

Wonwoo mutters something under his breath that sounds a lot like another string of curses, and then the older slides closer to the edge of the table, gently coaxing Mingyu into looking at him. “Do you know why he did that? Because he’s an insecure piece of shit. People like him want to exercise power wherever they go. They want to control other people because they have no control over anything else in their lives.”

The older’s voice turns bitter towards the end, and his eyes harden again, a faraway look in them like he’s remembering things.

Mingyu has a feeling Wonwoo is talking about a very specific person from his life, someone who isn’t part of it anymore, but who caused more pain than Mingyu could ever begin to imagine.

Mingyu brings his hands up to wrap them around Wonwoo’s wrist, turning his face to kiss Wonwoo’s palm, trying to snap him out of those unpleasant memories. “You’re right.”

Wonwoo looks at him again and nods, brushes his thumb over Mingyu’s cheek. “Don’t give people like that the satisfaction of making them believe they managed to oppress you, okay? Cause that’s what bullies do. That’s all they are. All he is. You’re stronger than that. He has absolutely no say in your life, or about you. Not in the slightest bit, yeah?”

Mingyu starts tearing up, because he didn’t know he needed tho hear those words right now until Wonwoo spoke them out loud. “Yeah.”

Wonwoo lets out a sigh, looking devastated when he sees Mingyu’s watery eyes, and he leans in to place a tender kiss on Mingyu’s forehead. Mingyu wraps his arms around Wonwoo, wanting affection and wanting to be close to the older. They stay like that for a moment, Wonwoo placing butterfly kisses on Mingyu’s cheeks and eyelids until Mingyu starts laughing quietly. “Wanna watch a movie, hm?”

“Yes, please.” 



Wonwoo choses a movie on Netflix while Mingyu takes a quick shower, and when he’s back in the living room, Wonwoo has also made popcorn, and Mingyu coos at him, gushing about how good of a boyfriend he is, and it’s the cutest thing ever, how Wonwoo blushes and tells him to shut up.

Mingyu just smiles at him as Wonwoo pats the space next to him on the couch, the negative feelings from earlier still lingering around somewhere in his mind, but it’s really hard to think about anything else when Wonwoo looks like that, wearing those tight jeans, his dark hair messed up, making Mingyu want to mess it up even further—

“You coming or are you going to watch the movie from there?”

Mingyu snaps out of it, blushing at his own thought, and pretends not to see the smug smirk Wonwoo gives him as he makes his way over. Mingyu sits down sideways on the couch, leans against Wonwoo’s chest who wraps his arm around Mingyu’s torso and lets Mingyu play with his fingers.

They feed each other popcorn, and make little comments about the movie here and there while they watch a bunch of superheroes try and save the world.

They don’t bring up what happened earlier, even though Wonwoo still keeps glancing at him as if to check if he’s fine.

And Mingyu is fine.

He really is.

He’s been over Hongbin for a long time now, but he guesses that just because a wound has healed and scarred, doesn’t mean you can’t re-open it and make it bleed again, which is what happened today.

Hongbin tried to hurt him again, tried to dig into that same wound he managed to inflict years ago, but he doesn’t know that Mingyu grew thicker skin since the last time they saw each other, so it’ll need a lot more than that to cut through it now.

And yet…

Mingyu feels his chest constrict, his throat tightening a little as unpleasant thought start brewing in his mind.

Despite all of that, Mingyu worries.

A sick, cruel part of him, worries, that Wonwoo might start to think about this whole thing Mingyu and Hongbin had.

Might start to ask himself why Hongbin left Mingyu, that Mingyu is actually pretty flawed, and that Wonwoo deserves better, and that he will one day wake up and just have enough of Mingyu, like Hongbin did, and that he will leave Mingyu, just like Hongbin did.

Wonwoo brushes his thumb over Mingyu’s wrist, and Mingyu tries to focus back on the movie, where Tom Holland is fading into dust, and he usually cries every time that scene comes up, but he’s too distracted for it right now.

“Hey,” Wonwoo whispers, gently tapping his palm. “You with me?”

Mingyu flinches, and Wonwoo stops his motions. He reaches for the remote and pauses the movie, and Mingyu curses himself for giving himself away like that. “Hey, why’d you pause—“

Wonwoo makes Mingyu look at him, holding Mingyu’s chin. “What’s wrong?”


“You seem a little out of it, that’s all.”

Mingyu sighs and shakes his head. “I’m just overthinking shit again. I’m sorry. I promise I’m okay.”

“What are you thinking about?” Wonwoo is looking at him so gently that Mingyu’s fears from a moment ago come back like a massive wave, making his heart race.


Wonwoo sighs. “Mingyu—“


“What?” Wonwoo freezes next to him, looking at him with wide eyes. “What—“

“What?” Mingyu interrupts, looking like a deer caught in the headlights.

Wonwoo angrily shakes his head. “What the fuck, Mingyu? Is this because of that asshole?” Wonwoo frowns and watches Mingyu sit up and turn on the couch so he can see him properly. “Mingyu.”

“I’m not comparing you to him,” Mingyu mumbles and averts his eyes. “I don’t know why I said that. I’m being stupid. Ignore me.”

“I’m not ignoring you.” Wonwoo shakes his head. “Look at me, Gyu.”

Mingyu doesn’t. “Can we just forget it? Please?”

“No,” Wonwoo mutters. When Mingyu doesn’t meet his eyes on his own accord, Wonwoo makes him. He looks angry. “You’re an idiot, you know that?”


A faint smile tugs on Wonwoo’s lips as he shakes his head. “I can’t believe…” He trails off and closes his eyes for a moment before looking at Mingyu again. “The only way I can ever imagine me leaving you is if you ask me to. Please get that through your head. I love you, Mingyu. I’m not leaving.”

If someone asked Mingyu later what caused him to react to Wonwoo’s words the way he does, he couldn’t give them a specific answer.

But he would say that it might’ve been a mixture of how honest Wonwoo’s words felt, how gentle yet intense his eyes were when he said I love you, how absolutely breathtaking he looked in the simple jeans and shirt he wore, and how much it meant to Mingyu that Wonwoo held his hand in that store, that he stood up for him, that he tried to make Mingyu feel better (and succeeded in doing so), and just how much he cared.

All of that makes something boil in his chest, and he suddenly feels breathless as he looks into Wonwoo’s beautiful eyes, and then that something in his chest snaps and just explodes, and Mingyu surges forward with the force of it, throwing his arms around Wonwoo’s neck and pulling him into a heated kiss.

Wonwoo makes a muffled sound against his lips, his hands quickly coming up to hold Mingyu’s waist after he basically threw himself at his boyfriend, but Mingyu’s enthusiasm seems to be enough for the older to quickly start kissing him back.

Mingyu feels this urgent need to be closer, so he wraps his arms tighter around Wonwoo’s neck and twists his fingers into the back of his hair, tugging on the soft strands, which makes Wonwoo groan into the kiss and wrap his arms around Mingyu’s waist tightly, the sound making Mingyu shudder.

“I don’t deserve you,” Mingyu whispers against Wonwoo’s lips, who just shakes his head.

“Idiot,” Wonwoo mutters, pulling him back in. He slips his tongue into Mingyu’s mouth, and their breathing becomes hasty, Wonwoo gripping Mingyu’s waist to pull him closer as he licks over the seam of Mingyu’s lips, the feeling of his silky tongue making Mingyu’s gut warm up and thighs tingle pleasantly. Mingyu can’t help but moan into the kiss when Wonwoo slides his hand under his shirt, touching the heated skin with his slightly rough but still so gentle palms.

What was supposed to be a simple, meaningful kiss, turns into something else very quickly.

They’ve spent too much time apart, missing each other, not knowing where they stand, unable to express themselves in behind those invisible bars that made it hard to breathe when they were together in the village.

And here they are, knowing just how much the other means to them, not as scared anymore, no judging eyes watching them from every corner.

It’s like the dam breaks, and so do their restraints.

“Hold on,” Wonwoo presses their foreheads together after a few minutes of them pouring themselves into the kiss, both of them breathing heavily, and Mingyu feels his body thrum, wanting nothing more than for Wonwoo to touch him and kiss him more. “Let’s— We should slow down.”

“Why?” Mingyu breathes, swallowing heavily and their lips brushing when he speaks.

Wonwoo licks his lips and Mingyu feels like he’s going to lose his mind. “You’re… you’re upset, Gyu. So let’s just… just…” Wonwoo trails off, because Mingyu has started to kiss Wonwoo’s neck, his breath hot against the sensitive skin. Mingyu feels himself stir in his pants when Wonwoo groans low in his throat when Mingyu starts to suck and bite softly at Wonwoo’s neck. “Shit, Gyu, don’t—“

“’m not upset,” Mingyu mutters, breathing heavily as he wraps his arms around Wonwoo’s shoulders, tugging at his shirt to expose his collarbones so he can kiss those, too. “I promise I’m not doing this to— to take off my mind off it. I just—“ Mingyu whimpers when Wonwoo trails his rough yet gentle hands over the knobs of his spine, his mind growing hazy from just the heat, the tension, the proximity between them. “Need you. Want you so bad Wonwoo hyung.”

Wonwoo exhales shakily and turns to press a kiss against his pulse. “Alright. Anything you want.” Wonwoo finally pulls back, finally presses their lips together again, and Mingyu slides into his lap soon enough, parting his lips and allowing their tongues to touch. Maybe he should be embarrassed about how excited he already is, how the front of his sweatpants are starting to tent, but Wonwoo doesn’t seem to mind, only letting out curse when he feels Mingyu’s bulge press against his abs when Mingyu presses up against him.

Mingyu grinds down on Wonwoo’s groin, and Wonwoo’s hips kick up, hands gripping Mingyu’s waist with a low groan.

“Wrap your legs around me,” Wonwoo whispers, breathing heavily against Mingyu’s ear, and when Mingyu finally makes sense of his words, he’s quick to cling on to Wonwoo’s shoulders.

“No, hyung wait, I’m too fucking heavy! Don’t—“

But Wonwoo stands pushes himself off the couch, his hands coming up to hold Mingyu’s thighs to hold him securely and hitch him up further. He grunts a little but stands successfully, and Mingyu can’t help but laugh through the haze of his arousal. “I’m stronger than I look. Have some faith in your boyfriend, how about that?”

“You look like you’re going to collapse. No offense.” Mingyu laughs, holding on tighter when Wonwoo starts walking towards his bedroom. He runs one hand over Wonwoo’s shoulder down to his arm, curling it around his bulging biceps, which isn’t usually that visible unless he’s flexing. It sends a flash of heat to his groin, how strong Wonwoo is, and the older seems to know the effect he’s having on Mingyu, because when Mingyu meets his eyes, he’s smirking at him.

Mingyu kisses him to wipe it off, and it makes Wonwoo stumble a bit, but they manage to reach the bedroom without an accident. Wonwoo kneels on the bed and lowers Mingyu on it, chasing him by the lips when Mingyu lies down on his back.

There’s much more room on the bed, and Mingyu makes use of it, quickly spreading his legs so Wonwoo can settle down there and get rid of that unnecessary space between them. Wonwoo bites down on Mingyu’s bottom lip while Mingyu pulls on Wonwoo’s thigh, urging him closer until their hips meet, groins pressing together snug and hot, the friction feeling heavenly on his aching erection. “Hyung.” Mingyu tugs on Wonwoo’s shirt, wanting the item off. 

Wonwoo pulls back to get rid of it in a swift motion, pulling Mingyu up to do the same. Mingyu unzips Wonwoo’s jeans and helps him get them off, and then Wonwoo watches Mingyu do the same with his sweatpants, until they’re only in their underwear. Wonwoo’s eyes rake over Mingyu’s bare legs, darkening ever further. Mingyu lies back down, opening his arms and offering a smile because Wonwoo looks a little nervous. Wonwoo comes closer, caging Mingyu in with his forearms braced next to Mingyu’s head. Mingyu sighs when their chests touch, more skin on skin contact than they’ve ever had, and Wonwoo’s chest is all soft, smooth skin over firm muscles.

Mingyu can’t stop touching, his palms running over Wonwoo’s broad shoulders, his back, a weak moan slipping past his lips when Wonwoo starts nipping on his neck, sucking until it leaves a bright red bruise right at the base where it fades into Mingyu’s collarbone.

“So soft,” Mingyu mumbles mindlessly, feels Wonwoo smile and press a tender kiss on his chest, and suddenly grinds his hips down, making their erections rub together through their briefs. The sudden move makes Mingyu’s breath hitch with a stuttered moan, fingers digging into Wonwoo’s back, who grunts and curls a hand around Mingyu’s thigh, pressing it down against the mattress as he pushes his hips down again, a slow and deliberate roll of lips that has his dick brushing against Mingyu’s balls and Mingyu’s mouth goes a little slack, his hand shooting out to grip Wonwoo’s waist to stop him. “W-Wait.”

Wonwoo immediately stops, pulling back to look into Mingyu’s eyes. “What? Are you okay?”

Mingyu swallows and nods, gnawing on his lower lip, not really sure if he should saw what’s on his mind.

“Mingyu,” Wonwoo murmurs, brushing his thumb over Mingyu’s cheekbone. “What’s wrong?”

Mingyu leans into his touch for a moment before gathering up the courage to just say it. “We don’t— We don’t have to but I…” Mingyu licks his lips. “I really want you to fuck me, hyung.”

Wonwoo’s eyes widen before he drops his head to Mingyu’s shoulder. “Mingyu, I swear that mouth of yours.”

Mingyu smiles nervously. “Do you want to?”

“Of course I do, love,” Wonwoo gently says, pulling back to kiss the corner of his mouth. “If you’re sure.”

“I am,” Mingyu assures him. “I’ve never wanted to do this with someone as much as I do with you.”

Wonwoo’s eyes soften, and he slowly leans in to kiss him again. Impossibly sweet and gentle despite the situation.

Mingyu runs his hands over Wonwoo’s back, touching his skin gently and lovingly, wanting nothing more than to touch every inch of his beautiful body, but his body is aching for Wonwoo, and he thinks they will have a lot of time and opportunities to explore their bodies in the future. Mingyu slides his hand between them, shuddering at how languidly Wonwoo is kissing him, his tongue feeling so lewd it makes Mingyu’s dick throb.

His hand stops at the seam of Wonwoo’s briefs, fingers slipping past it but not going any further than that. “Can I?” Mingyu asks, pulling back just enough to speak. Wonwoo closes his eyes and presses their foreheads together, giving a nod, and Mingyu watches his face closely when he slides his hand inside, curling his hand around Wonwoo’s erection.

It’s beautiful, the way Wonwoo’s eyebrows furrow and his lips part at the initial feel of Mingyu touching him. Mingyu starts moving his hand down his length, and Wonwoo moans, quietly and rough, and Mingyu shudders, wants more of those sounds that make his erection throb with the ache of blood. Mingyu works his hand up and down, circles the pad of his thumb around Wonwoo’s head until Wonwoo starts swearing and rolling his hips, feeding breathy moans into Mingyu’s mouth.

And as much as Mingyu wants to see Wonwoo come, wants to feel him throb and twitch in his hand and his face twist with pleasure when his orgasm hits him, there’s something else he wants more.

Mingyu stops moving his hand, making Wonwoo exhale shakily and sag against him a little. Mingyu pulls his hand out and brings his trembling fingers to the back of Wonwoo’s head, running them through his already damp hair. He blindly reaches for the top drawer of his nightstand, having to stretch his body a little to reach inside. It takes him a moment to find what he’s looking for, and by now Wonwoo has lifted his head to press little kisses against Mingyu’s shoulder, quietly watching him get the things they need.

Mingyu gulps nervously when he places the lube and condom on his chest, taking a second to gather his bearing before he looks at Wonwoo, who’s still eyeing the items displayed on Mingyu’s chest.

Wonwoo takes a deep breath and tears his gaze away from the sight, reaching up to brush Mingyu’s sweaty fringe off his forehead. “You might need to guide me through it a little. I’ve  never… I mean. Not really. Not with a man.”

Mingyu smiles at this, his heart aching in the best way possible and Wonwoo probably thinks Mingyu’s making fun of him, cause he pouts and before Mingyu can say anything, leans down to gently bite down on his neck. It stings, but in a good way, and the soft atmosphere slowly shifts, Mingyu becoming more aware of the hot air around them, the gentle throbbing between his legs. He moans softly when Wonwoo nibbles at his collarbone. “P-Prep. Have to prep me first.”

Wonwoo nods and pulls away, grabbing the bottle of lube. Mingyu sits up, enough to pull off his underwear, trying not to blush too much when Wonwoo’s eyes trace the new exposed skin. Wonwoo sighs and reaches out, gently running his palm over Mingyu’s thigh. “Pretty. So pretty, Gyu.”

Mingyu bites down on his lip so he doesn’t whimper or whine, and lies back down, spreading his legs further. “Okay, okay. Put some lube on your index finger and then you have to—“

“I’ve watched porn before,” Wonwoo gently interrupts, squeezing Mingyu’s thigh. “I know the… technicalities.”

Mingyu lifts his head at that, looking at his boyfriend and smiling at the blush on his cheeks. “Well, that’s good.”

“I just… don’t want to hurt you.”

“You won’t.”

“I’ve heard stuff, I’m scared of being too rough with you or—“

“Hyung,” Mingyu interrupts gently, reaching up to cup Wonwoo’s cheek and making him meet his eyes. He pulls his face down to kiss him softly. “I will tell you if it hurts.”

Wonwoo looks at him for another few seconds before nodding his head, shakily opening the bottle and squirting some of the lube on two fingers. He moves so he’s leaning his weight on one arm and can reach down between Mingyu’s legs with his other. He looks down between their bodies until his fingers brush over Mingyu’s hole, which makes Mingyu flinch a bit at the feeling of the cold lube on his heated skin. Wonwoo immediately snaps his head up, looking concerned.

Mingyu smiles and shakes his head. “’s just cold. Go on.”

Wonwoo releases a relieved breath and keeps his eyes on Mingyu as he moves his hand again, gently brushing his index finger over Mingyu’s rim. He does this for a while, applying gentle pressure before starting to rub circles into the skin, over and over, until Mingyu’s eyes start to darken and his breathing starts to become faster and deeper.

Mingyu moans the next time Wonwoo presses down on his rim, unable to take the teasing touches anymore. “H-hyung, please, don’t tease—“

“Alright, sorry,” Wonwoo breathes, pecking his lips before he takes another deep breath and slowly starts to push the first finger in. He stops immediately, checking Mingyu’s reaction. “That okay?”

Mingyu nods. “I’m fine. I’ve done this before, yeah?”

Wonwoo’s eyes cloud over a little at that, but he nods his head and presses another gentle kiss against Mingyu’s chest, before pushing his finger further in. He moves it slowly after getting Mingyu’s okay, and Mingyu sighs at the feeling, the slight burn that comes with it, entirely bearable knowing what will follow later.

“Add another?” Mingyu asks for it himself when Wonwoo doesn’t.


Mingyu nods, his chest starting to heave with his rising arousal. “Y-Yeah, please.”

Wonwoo nods, adds more lube, and then, very slowly, slides another finger in alongside the first.

“Yeah,” Mingyu breathes, feeling much fuller, and he can’t help but moan and drop his head on the pillow, closing his eyes. After a while, he looks back up, biting down on his lip. “You can move them.”

Wonwoo looks at him, his eyes dark and lips puffy and red and Mingyu wants him inside so much he feels like crying. Wonwoo slowly moves both fingers, in and out, at an agonizingly slow pace, and it burns it the best way possible, almost arduous, Mingyu’s thighs shaking the faster Wonwoo goes.

“C-Curl them,” Mingyu stutters after a while. “And like… spread them, like a scissor.”

Wonwoo does, and he starts becoming a little more brave, still checking with Mingyu every few seconds for any signs of pain, and Mingyu starts to losen up, starts to melt into the mattress while Wonwoo massages his walls, stretching him, rubbing against him, pushing his fingers deeper and—

Mingyu’s back arches suddenly, a breathless moan escaping his lips. He whines, pushing his hips down against Wonwoo’s fingers.

“Are you okay?” Wonwoo asks, sounding so concerned Mingyu would find it cute if he wasn’t so hard and Wonwoo didn’t just rub against that bundle of nerves that manage to wrack his whole body with hot pleasure.

Mingyu nods his head, reaching out to grip Wonwoo’s biceps. “Again, please.”

So Wonwoo moves his fingers again, pushing them in and against that same spot, and Mingyu moans when they rub just right, thighs clamping around Wonwoo’s hips as he pushes down against Wonwoo’s fingers. “Y-Yeah, right there. Feels so good, hyung.”

“Fuck,” Wonwoo mutters, his voice rough and when Mingyu manages to open his eyes, he sees Wonwoo press his hips against the mattress, and it makes him shudder, imagining how hard Wonwoo must be, how much his dick must be aching for friction— Wonwoo hits the same spot again, and again, until Mingyu is a moaning mess, pushing his hips down and working himself on Wonwoo’s fingers, his chest heaving as Wonwoo nails his prostate every single time.

“S-Stop,” He manages to stutter, and Wonwoo does, immediately. Mingyu slumps against the bed, feeling boneless, his dick twitching, angry and red, and god, he needs— he needs— “I need you, hyung, please.”

Wonwoo nods, swallowing heavily as he carefully pulls his fingers out. Mingyu in the meantime rips the condom package open with shaky fingers, helping Wonwoo out of his underwear before gently reaching for his erection to pull the condom over it. Mingyu pours some lube over his palm and reaches down to wrap it around Wonwoo’s cock and starts stroking it, smirking when Wonwoo moans.

Wonwoo kisses him, sweet and gentle, and cages Mingyu in with his arms, and the air is so hot, Mingyu feels so hot and needy he can barely control himself when he guides Wonwoo’s dick to his hole, holding his breath when Wonwoo looks at him and waits for Mingyu to nod before he reaches down to hold the base of his dick and starts pushing in.

He moves slowly, burying himself inside inch by inch, and Mingyu kisses Wonwoo’s lips, know this is all new to him, and gently runs his palms over Wonwoo’s back when he feels the older boy’s arms shake a little. Mingyu closes his eyes, trying to relax as much as possible, but it’s been a while, and Wonwoo is so much bigger than his fingers, so when Wonwoo is fully inside him, it takes Mingyu a while to adjust.

And all the while, Wonwoo kisses him, kisses his cheeks, his lips, the tensed furrow of Mingyu’s eyebrows as he tries to loosen up around Wonwoo’s erection. “You okay?” Wonwoo’s voice is trembling a bit, but his eyes are so warm, so full of care and love, Mingyu forgets all about the burn and wraps his arms around Wonwoo’s shoulders, curls his thighs around Wonwoo’s hips and pulls them together until their foreheads touch.

“I’m good,” Mingyu breathes against his lips, his chest heaving. He wraps his arms around Wonwoo’s shoulders, holding his boyfriend close. “You can move.”

“You sure? Shouldn’t I—“

Mingyu’s hips shift, Wonwoo gasping at the feeling. “I’m ready, please, please move—“

And Wonwoo finally does. He gives an experimentally roll of his hips that makes him close his eyes and curse at how good it must feel. Wonwoo stops to take a few calming breaths, his chest heaving. The older starts moving his hips slowly, doesn’t pull out completely before sliding back in.

Mingyu’s mouth goes slack at the feeling, his hand fisting Wonwoo’s hair tightly. “Yeah— god, just like that.”

“Fuck, Gyu,” Wonwoo groans quietly when he pushes back inside next time and keeps himself there, grinding his hips a little. It’s so deep Mingyu shakes with the feeling, the moan that slips past his lips so lewd he barely recognizes his own voice. Wonwoo trembles after finally pulling back out, only to push back in, slow and deep. “You feel so good.”

“Y-Yeah?” Mingyu asks, managing a breathless smile as he looks into Wonwoo’s dark, hazy eyes. “Feel good?”

Wonwoo thrusts back in with a breathy moan, kissing Mingyu’s slack mouth almost tenderly. “So good, holy shit.”

Wonwoo starts rolling his hips, a little harder and faster, and Mingyu can’t really do anything but take it, pushing his hips back against Wonwoo’s dick to feel him deeper and better. “G-God, hyung, feels amazing.”

Wonwoo shudders and kisses his neck, moaning softly, moaning Mingyu’s name as he snaps his hips. Wonwoo stops for a moment to shift his legs, spreading them further for better leverage, and the next time he slides in, it’s so much deeper, and his dick presses right there. Mingyu throws his head back with a stuttered groan, the breath getting knocked out of him. “Y-Yeah, god, like that.”

The older groans and kisses him, his thrusts becoming faster and Mingyu’s moans becoming more and more desperate, turning into whimpers when the pleasure threatens to become overwhelming, his eyes rolling back when Wonwoo pushes in hard and deep at one particular thrust. “H-Hyung, hyung…” He can’t control his words anymore, he’s just glad Wonwoo’s there, holding him, mouthing at his neck and whispering reassuring words against his lips, even though Mingyu should be reassuring Wonwoo since this is all new to him.

But Wonwoo is fucking him so good, like it’s all he’s ever done, rolling his hips in a way it massages Mingyu’s walls right where it makes his whole body ripple with pleasure.

“Oh f-fuck, fuck, hyung, please, keep going—“ Mingyu feels his eyes sting, unable to handle all the sensations, and Wonwoo spreads Mingyu’s legs further, his hips speeding up and Mingyu has a hard time breathing, the moans that get ripped out of him robbing him of air. He reaches down to his throbbing cock when he feels his thighs and gut warm up, muscles tensing and mind going blank as the pleasure starts wrecking him.

“Let me.” Wonwoo nudges Mingyu’s hand away, wraps his hand around him and starts pumping Mingyu’s aching cock. Mingyu lets out something between a moan and a sob, overwhelmed with the pleasure. Wonwoo looks wrecked at the sound Mingyu lets out, his hips stuttering before picking up the rhythm again. Their skin is damp with sweat, Mingyu’s thighs sliding and sticking around Wonwoo’s hips. “Gyu, baby I’m— I’m close—“

Mingyu nods his head, pushing his hips down and clenching around Wonwoo’s cock as much as he can. Wonwoo drops his head, pressing his face into Mingyu’s neck as his hips pick up speed impossibly, Mingyu’s stomach clenching as his muscles tense up. He wraps a hand around Wonwoo’s nape, squeezing gently, pressing a trembling kiss against the older boy’s temple. “D-Doing so good, hyung. Fucking me so well…”

Wonwoo goes silent at that, his hips pushing in hard, and then his muscles tense up, and he’s coming. He trembles as his cock throbs inside Mingyu, and then his muscles loosen up and he moans Mingyu’s name, hips starting to move again, pushing in a few more times, hard and slow as he shakes through his orgasm.

The sounds Wonwoo makes, his dick twitching inside Mingyu, the way the mattress shakes beneath Wonwoo’s violent tremors, it’s the hottest thing Mingyu has ever witnessed, and it’s what sends him over the edge. He spurts over Wonwoo’s hand and their chests, whimpering a mixture of hyung and Wonwoo as his thighs shake through his orgasm.

Wonwoo doesn’t stop stroking Mingyu until he goes limp on the bed, both of them panting, sweat soaked and boneless. Wonwoo eventually pulls out slowly, Mingyu wincing a little at the strange feeling.

He pulls Wonwoo close to kiss him slowly.

“You okay?” Mingyu asks, now that his mind isn’t as clouded with pleasure anymore, feeling like crap for not helping Wonwoo more.

“I’m more than okay, Gyu,” Wonwoo assures him. “I should be the one asking you that. Did I hurt you?”

“Not in the slightest, hyung,” Mingyu quickly says. “It was really nice."

Wonwoo smiles, and it’s so adorable, that blissful glint in his eyes. “Yeah, yeah it was.” ”

He hugs Wonwoo, kissing his cheek, and feels his boyfriend smile.

His eyes start drooping as the effects of his orgasm start fading. Mingyu feels boneless, a gentle throbbing in his back that has him melting into the mattress. Wonwoo moves first, and Mingyu barely has the energy to stop him.

“Just getting something to clean you up,” Wonwoo quietly says, a soft look in his eyes as he removes Mingyu’s fingers from his wrist. He comes back a moment later, wiping Mingyu’s chest and cleaning up the remaining lube from his body. Mingyu lazily blinks at him as his boyfriend takes care of him, and Wonwoo meets his gaze when he feels him staring, smiling in amusement.

“Do I have cum on my face or something?”

Mingyu snorts and shakes his head. “I was just thinking.”

“About what?”

“Might’ve found another thing that puts me to sleep.”

Wonwoo blinks cluelessly for one or two seconds, so Mingyu wiggles his eyebrows, which helps Wonwoo catch on. “I hate you.”

“No…” Mingyu mumbles with a pout, his eyelids falling shut as he feels his mind going numb with the urge to fall asleep. “You don’t.”

He thinks he hears Wonwoo agree in that soft, loving voice of his, and it’s the last thing he’s aware of before his mind goes blank.





The car hits a pothole and Mingyu stirs, bangs his head against the window from where he was trying to take a nap.

He sighs as he blinks his eyes open. He was just about to fall asleep.


Mingyu turns his head to look at his boyfriend’s profile, framed by the background of trees and mountains rushing past them.

The sun is blinding, but the AC is on, blowing against Mingyu’s matted bangs. His mouth’s a little too dry, too.

He whines. “I feel gross, hyung.”

Wonwoo glances at him for a second, before focusing on the road again, then moving his hand without taking his eyes off the road. The streets are dangerous around here, steep with a sharp drop, so Mingyu appreciates that Wonwoo’s being extra careful.

“Here.” Wonwoo hands him a bottle of water.

Mingyu thanks him and takes a big gulp, handing the bottle to the older, who drinks half of it in one go. “How are you? Want to switch?”

Wonwoo shakes his head. “I’m okay. We’re almost there, anyway.”

Mingyu hums and leans his head back, turning to stare out the window. It must be somewhere around twenty-eight degrees out. Flowers are blooming in all their glory, violets, pinks and blues blending together to form fields of colors that seem almost unreal.

They pass an old man ushering his sheep over the street and Wonwoo honks once, the man waving at them as they drive by.

It makes Mingyu smile.

He’s missed this.

They stop at Cheumsan to do some last-minute grocery shopping. They mostly buy rice in bulks, canisters of sunflower oil, toilet paper, all things would be too heavy to carry if you don’t have a car.

The cashier recognizes Wonwoo immediately, makes small talk with him, and while Mingyu watches his boyfriend interact with these people, all smiles and charming words, he’s reminded of the first time he met Wonwoo.

It makes his heart ache in a strange way. A part of him fears that Wonwoo looks almost… happier here. Like he’s in his element. He seems carefree, not as guarded.

“You okay?” Wonwoo suddenly asks, having finished his conversation. Mingyu wants to hold his hand, needs the reassurance, but he can’t forget where they are.

They can’t be doing these things here, but it’s hard, after having been together for half a year, he’s used to walking around holding Wonwoo’s hand. His hand just feels awkward and empty otherwise.

“Yeah, let’s go?”

Wonwoo smiles, his eyes lingering, and Mingyu wants to tell him to be careful, but heck, if Wonwoo isn’t worried, why should Mingyu be?

They pack the stuff into the car, and then it’s another thirty minutes until they get to their destination.

Mingyu scrolls through his music and stops at a playlist he made. One that he hasn’t listened to in a while, but that still makes his chest constrict, cause he remembers how much he cried the first time he heard it.

He pouts a little and plays a song from it.

Wonwoo tenses up next to him when he hears the first few tunes, and then he lets out a groan. “Stop, Mingyu.”

“What?” Mingyu asks. “It’s cute, hyung. I like this song. Am I still driving you wild?”

Wonwoo grunts and shakes his head. “Yeah, cause you’re an annoying little shit.”

“Alright. I see how it is. So you make mixtapes for all your flings, huh? And here I was, feeling special.”

“Oh shut up.” Wonwoo chuckles and reaches for his hand. “I just… don’t really like thinking about that time.”

Mingyu laces their fingers together and nods. “I like this song, though.”

Wonwoo smiles at him. “I like it too, Gyu.”

And just a few minutes later, they pass that sign again, the one Mingyu hasn’t seen in a year.


welcome to Gungsan

“Where it all started,” Mingyu mindlessly mutters.

Wonwoo smiles and squeezes his hand.

A strange feeling spreads in Mingyu’s chest when he spots the first few houses that belong to the village.

Nostalgia, maybe.

Sadness, happiness, anger.

It all blends together, and suddenly Mingyu feels like crying.

“Shh.” Wonwoo brings his hand up to kiss his knuckles. “It’s okay, Gyu.”

Mingyu manages to hold back his tears, enough to get out of the car and open the gates to the house, that one house in this village Mingyu is happy to see.

What feels like coming back home.

He opens the gates so Wonwoo can drive the car through and park it inside, and follows him after closing the gates again.

The sunflowers that greet him have grown high as ever, facing the sun, soaking up the warmth in their bright yellow and orange petals. Birds are chirping, and Mingyu has to smile at the sound of cow bells in the distance.

He wonders how this must feel to Wonwoo, if Mingyu feels like this, he can only imagine how it must be for him.

This was his home for twenty-four years. He grew up here. He has so much more memories here than Mingyu does.

As Mingyu approaches the house, he sees Wonwoo get out of the car, and hears him laugh, and he already knows what about.

Once he’s close enough, he sees his boyfriend crouching on the ground, a fluffy, orange dog trying to climb into his lap.


Said dog looks at him and immediately lets go of Wonwoo, running towards Mingyu. His tail’s wagging wildly, and he’s breathing so fast because of how excited he is Mingyu thinks the dog might pass out. Mingyu crouches down on the grass and hugs the dog, smiling widely as he pets him everywhere he can.

“Aw, Pumpkin, baby I missed you so much. You remember me, right? Remember Mingyu hyung?”

Maybe not, maybe Pumpkin’s just this excited with everyone he meets, but he’s licking Mingyu’s cheek and ear and can barely control himself with how excited he is, so Mingyu likes to think he recognizes Mingyu.

“Silly dog,” Wonwoo mumbles fondly as he watches them both with a smile. “Look at him. Got a new collar and everything.”

“You do, don’t you? Looking so handsome? I bet every misses dog in this village is all over, yeah?”

Wonwoo laughs at that. “Please shut up.” 

Mingyu smiles up at him and kisses Pumpkin’s head before reluctantly pulling away and standing up, Pumpkin staying close between them.

There’s someone else he’s dying to see, someone—

He hears the door of the house open, and both him and Wonwoo look up just in time to see his grandmother rounding the corner.

She’s smiling brightly, and Mingyu starts tearing up at the sight. He approaches her and before she can say anything, Mingyu throws his arms around her to hug her tightly.

“Oh boy,” His grandmother says with a chuckle, patting his back and his hair. “Oh, Mingyu, are you crying?”

“I missed you.”

She sighs and cards her fingers through Mingyu’s hair. “I missed you too, my sweet boy.”

Mingyu cries some more at the fond tone of her voice, the loving words, the gentle touch. It reminds him of his mom, whom he hasn’t seen in quite a while.

She hugs Wonwoo next, like he’s her own grandson, too, and she says “Look at you. Handsome as ever. We all miss you here. I’m so… proud of you, Wonwoo.”

And see, the thing is.

Wonwoo knows.

He knows Mingyu’s grandmother knows.

About Mingyu liking boys.

About Mingyu liking Wonwoo.

And she’s an intelligent woman. She saw how distressed Wonwoo was when Mingyu left.

She knows about them.

So that, in relation to her words, makes Wonwoo tear up.

And that in return, makes Mingyu tear up. Because if there’s one thing his heart can’t take, it’s Wonwoo’s tears.

“Shh,” His grandmother shushes him. “It’s okay.”

Wonwoo’s shoulders shake with how much he tries to stay calm. “I’m sorry.”

Mingyu isn’t sure what he’s sorry for.

For who he is, for leaving, for crying?

He can’t handle it, Mingyu can’t, because Wonwoo’s went through so much shit and Mingyu wasn’t really there for him. He thought Wonwoo was okay because when Wonwoo is upset, he’s upset about work, or his family, but not about himself. His own feelings. His fears, his angers. He never talks about those things, unless it gets the best of him, which is mainly when it comes to Mingyu, when he gets jealous or insecure, but himself?

No. Never.

Mingyu steps away and walks to the car so he can start unloading their things. His mind is troubled, and his heart hurts, but they’re there for a week, and Mingyu just wants to enjoy their time together, their time off, before school starts again and Wonwoo starts his first semester at university.

Because he’s going to become a police detective.

And Mingyu is proud him, just like his grandmother is. He’s so incredibly proud sometimes it feels like his heart’s just going to overflow with all the emotions it holds for Wonwoo.

Wonwoo appears on his side a moment later, smiles at him with red rimmed eyes, and helps him carry their stuff upstairs. Mingyu wants to talk to him. Wants to hold him.

But they’re here to visit his grandmother, to catch up with her, so it has to wait for later.

His grandma has prepared a lot of food as always, and they talk to her for hours, about everything and nothing, updating her on their lives, school, work.

Wonwoo and him sit close together on the couch and Mingyu doesn’t miss the gentle look on his grandmother’s face whenever she glances at them.

She doesn’t ask.

Just asks if they’re happy, and they both say they are, and really, that’s that.

She doesn’t care to know anything else, but that’s all that matters to her. That they are happy, whoever they may be with. Even if it’s with another boy.

She shows them her new garden; the expanded version. Grows even more vegetables than before, and she says the she couldn’t handle the amount of food it gave, so she started selling some on the weekly market down in Cheumsan.

Nothing much seems to have changed in the village, except for the fact that aside from Wonwoo, Joohyun’s family seems to have moved to another village, too.

To start new, wipe the state clean, pretend they never had a daughter to begin with.

A bunch of cowards, really. Joohyun is living her best life together with Seulgi, and she has people who actually have her back, and who love her for who she is, and she’s better off without that sorry excuse of a family, anyway.

Seokmin and Chan are apparently supposed to arrive in a few days, and both Wonwoo and Mingyu are looking forward to that. Few more night at the school, drinking that nasty beer and telling fake ghost stories that will freak Chan out.

He’s missed them a lot, too.

By the time they are done talking and sorting things out at the house, the sun is starting to set. They’re in Mingyu’s childhood bedroom, putting their clothes away, and Wonwoo is being strangely quiet.

The same nagging feeling from before comes back, that dull pain in his chest when he saw Wonwoo cry.

Wonwoo seems to sense something off, and he looks up at him with a pout. “Everything okay?”

Mingyu averts his eyes and looks at the shirt he’s holding, before letting out a sigh and placing it on the bed. “Do you want to go for a walk?”

Wonwoo seems taken aback for a moment before shrugging his shoulders. “Sure. Let’s go.”



It’s not hot anymore. It’s warm, the cool breeze of the approaching night offering some relief.

Wonwoo has picked up a stick from somewhere, both of them smiling when he uses it the way he used to do when they still had cows.

“Do you miss it?” Mingyu asks after a while.

They’re on the path to the waterfall, where no one can see them any longer.

Wonwoo finally reaches for his hand, lacers their fingers together tightly, and Mingyu lets out a tense breath, relieved. “Miss the village?”

“Yeah just… everything. The life you had before.”

Wonwoo is quiet for a while, kicks at the pebbles on the ground, and they listen to the birds, listen to the far away sounds of the rushing river, the leaves rustling in the wind.

Mingyu brushes his fingers over the high grass, recognizing the field. This was were Wonwoo and him stole apples.

Where Mingyu almost kissed Wonwoo.

“I guess I do,” Wonwoo finally answers after a while. He takes a deep breath. “Mostly just miss the unpolluted air.”

Mingyu laughs. “Understandable.” He squeezes Wonwoo’s hand and lets the older pull him closer.

Is it weird that he misses his boyfriend even though they’re together right now?

Yeah, it’s probably weird, but sometimes… he doesn’t really mean it physically. Like his heart misses Wonwoo.

Especially when they have to act like they’re not in love.

“Is that all?”

Wonwoo shrugs. “I don’t know, Mingyu. Sometimes? People in the city are so obsessed… about weird shit. Like instagram and whatnot. How many followers they have. Like not to sound like an asshole but it’s sad? People don’t give a shit about those things here. You just live to fill your stomach, and you enjoy the nature.”

Mingyu hums and turns his head to press his lips against Wonwoo’s shoulder. “I know what you mean.”

“But when I feel that way, I remember all the crap that happened here. My dad, Joohyun and Seulgi, how judging people are, all the gossip and fakeness. Like it’s really not all that different from the city, in that regard. I’m just— I’m trying to say, looking at it that way? Life for me is better now. Yerim’s so much happier, and she’s getting proper education. Mom’s got a good job. I’m not asking for more.”

“But what about you?”

“What about me?”

“Are you happier? And I don’t mean Yerim or your mom, hyung. I mean you.”

Wonwoo frowns at that, and he stays quiet, for a long moment. The wind messes up his bangs, so Mingyu reaches out to fix them, and then moves to cup Wonwoo’s cheek. “I’m starting school soon… That was always my dream, yeah? And. I have you.”

Mingyu’s lower lip juts out, wobbling a little. “Hyung.”

“I’ve never been this happy.”

Wonwoo smiles, and laughs when Mingyu starts tearing up again, pulling him into a hug and cooing. “Such a baby. My little baby.”

“Stop.” Mingyu burrows into his arms and wraps his arms around his middle. “I just want you to be okay. Want you to be happy. I feel like you always take care of others but you never let them do the same for you. It’s not fair.”

Wonwoo shakes his head and pulls back to look at them. “That’s not true. You take care of me all the time, Gyu.”

“Me cooking for you or giving you back massages don’t count.”

“Uh, yes, they do.” Wonwoo snorts. “But I mean everything. You care about my happiness.”

“Of course I do,” Mingyu mumbles. “I love you.”

Wonwoo smiles fondly. “I love you more.”

Mingyu’s heart flutters, even after hearing those words so many times. He points at the tree behind him after collecting himself. “Remember the apples?”

Wonwoo turns around to look at the tree. “Of course I do.”

He waits for Wonwoo to turn back around to face him before he speaks again. “I really wanted to kiss you that day.”

Wonwoo looks into his eyes before shyly lowering his gaze. “I really wanted you to.”

“Is that why you avoided me for so long after that?”

Wonwoo nods. “Yeah, yeah. I thought… I don’t know. I was stupid. Thought staying away from you would get rid of my feelings but that… Obviously didn’t work.”

“I still got you in the end.” Mingyu grins at him, stepping closer.

“Looks like it.” Wonwoo smiles and nudges their noses together. “Hey, are you sleepy?”

“Huh, why?”

“You blink a lot when you’re tired,” Wonwoo says. “Couldn’t really sleep last night, hm?”

“I think I was just too excited. But I’m okay, really, we can go to the waterfall—“

“The waterfall isn’t going anywhere, love," Wonwoo says. “But a nap on… the hammock sounds good?”

Mingyu starts beaming at. “That sounds really good.”

“Race you there?”

“That’s not fair, I’m tired.”

“I’ll go easy on you.”

“Okay… One.”



Wonwoo runs off before Mingyu even finished speaking.

Alright, so Mingyu loses, and Wonwoo is already lying in the hammock by the time he arrives.

But looking at his boyfriend, lying there, making grabby hands with the leaves from the trees casting pretty shadows over his even prettier face, Mingyu doesn’t really feel like that much of a loser.

Mingyu jumps on top of Wonwoo, who groans and is quick to wrap his arms around him to steady him. He smiles down at his boyfriend, and leans in to peck his lips. "I win."