Chapter 1: the beginning
it was in the middle of the night when jaemin felt jeno waking him up. groaning, he turned over and tried his best to ignore his friend. jeno was only going to ask him to cook anyway and he was too sleepy, too tired to entertain the other boy. but then jisung started to join and jeno got louder and louder so with much more effort than usual, jaemin got up and blindly walked towards the kitchen.
jaemin didn't even notice that something was wrong until jeno aegyo'd his way out of cleaning the pans he used to cook. jeno had washed his own dishes, even jisung's, but when he saw the pans and the messy table he was suddenly so sleepy, and so, so tired and so, so, 'sorry nana~ i promise i'll make it up to you!'
jaemin was in the middle of drying the pans when the room suddenly spun and whoa, was the room always this cold? in a daze, jaemin cleared away the table, frowning at the various pieces of paper on it, finishing as quickly as he could so he could get back to his bed. he couldn't even remember walking to his room, but there he was, sitting on his bed, breathing hard as if he'd run a mile. he felt his forehead and found it warm to the touch, and he was sweating and he should be hot but he was cold, too cold. he'd already felt bad this morning, but now he felt much much worse.
hoping he'd be fine with a bit of sleep, jaemin tucked himself in and drifted off in an uneasy slumber.
it didn't even feel like he'd slept at all but then renjun was there, shaking him awake, looking at him with the most disappointed look on his face.
"am i late?" he asked, and wow, was his voice always this scratchy?
"where did you hide mark hyung's notes?"
mark hyung's notes? confused, jaemin asked, "what about mark hyung's notes?"
"don't you remember?" renjun said, his frown deepening by the second, "haechan told us to keep them! but now they're gone. jeno said you were the last one to leave the kitchen and you must have took it, so where is it?"
"i don't really remember any notes, injun," he replied, because he really didn't. "what's happening?"
"jaemin ah, this isn't the time to play games. where did you put it?"
"injun, i really don't know what you're talking about. what notes?"
"haechan came here last night with some of mark hyung's music sheets. remember how mark hyung always writes his songs in sheets before compiling them in his journal? haechan took those notes cause mark hyung was too stubborn and wouldn't rest when he already has a cold. i left already cause i didn't want to eat but you and jisung and jeno were there. jeno said he left them on the table but when he came back after showering they were gone. you were the last one to leave the kitchen, so you must have taken it. so where is it?"
jaemin thought long and hard, trying to remember. he couldn't even remember haechan last night, how could he remember where the music sheets were?
"injun, i don't really know. i didn't take it, i swear."
renjun rolled his eyes, "unbelievable. you and jeno seriously need to learn some responsibility! you know how important those notes are to mark hyung!"
"of course i do..."
"so where did you put it?"
jaemin really didn't know. it was starting to hurt his head talking to renjun while lying down, so jaemin gingerly sat up. he was careful and slow, but when he got himself upright the room was spinning. he fought back a groan, because the last thing he wanted was to make the members worry about him, but that was probably the farthest thing from renjun's mind cause the chinese boy just turned away and left.
jaemin must have really pissed him off though because renjun slammed his door so hard the sound reverberated through the room and around his skull, leaving him with a pounding headache. alone in his room, with no one watching, jaemin clutched at his head and groaned. that bad feeling the other day was now most probably a raging fever-- he was hot and cold all at once, and it was getting really difficult to think. still, he was lucid enough to remember he had to take medicine to get his temperature down. so jaemin got up from his bed, intending to go to their shared bathroom to get himself a pill.
except all thoughts of his fever was erased at the sight of donghyuck sobbing in their living room.
taeyong was there, with his arms around the usually bright and loud boy. doyoung was also there, and so was jaehyun who was standing beside taeyong. jeno was there too with the saddest, saddest expression on his face. renjun, who was glaring at him before, was now beside donghyuck, patting his back in comfort. ten had his arms around jeno, and it was him who noticed him first.
maybe it was because jaemin's brain was too muddled and slow, but ten was suddenly in front of him, asking him question after question after question. jaemin had normally no problem deciphering his ten hyung's words despite his heavy accent, but all he could clearly hear were 'papers' and 'notes' and 'mark' and 'where did you put it?'
so he told him, "i didn't see mark hyung's notes. but i was so tired so i don't really remember?"
"but you were the one who cleared the table last night."
"i did. cause jeno left."
"it's not my fault!" jeno was suddenly yelling, "i didn't lose mark hyung's notes! i didn't!" and then he turned to donghyuck, his expression distraught, pleading, "i swear haechan ah. i didn't lose it! i'm not hiding it from you! you know i wouldn't!"
"but i told you to keep it, jeno! now mark hyung won't talk to me when all i wanted was to get him to stop writing and practicing and rest!"
"but i didn't lose it!"
"i asked you to keep it! and you didn't!"
when their voices began to rise, doyoung quickly went beside jeno and rubbed his arms, trying to get him to calm down. taeyong and jaehyun were also doing the same for donghyuck. jeno was nearly in tears when he said, "i took a bath after eating. i left the notes at the table, yes, but i was gonna get it back after! but when i came back, it was gone. jaemin ah, you took the notes, didn't you?"
"jaemin ah, please," jaehyun asked, looking at donghyuck and jeno in worry, "just give them back."
"that's enough of this game," taeyong said, serious, "i don't want to see you fighting over this."
with everyone looking at him as if he really took it, like they were convinced that he had mark's notes, jaemin really didn't know what to say or how to feel. if he weren't so sick, he probably could've worded it better, but with his thoughts muddled with fever, and because he didn't want to see donghyuck and jeno argue over something like this when none of them were at fault, what he said was, "i don't really remember what happened last night. but yeah, i remember jeno taking a shower and i remember he said he was coming back. i don't really remember clearing the table but i know really wanted to sleep so i put everything but the bowls we used in the trash."
"the trash?" haechan repeated in disbelief, "how could you be so out of it you don't remember a thing?! how could you be so absent-minded to throw mark hyung's notes away?!"
"i think they were receipts though?" jaemin tried, because he'd know music sheets anywhere.
"but you're not sure?" doyoung asked, frowning.
jaemin wasn't really all there last night, but he didn't want to lie because he did remember throwing away some papers... but they were just receipts, right? unable to answer, jaemin stayed silent. doyoung shook his head at him, thoroughly disappointed.
looking at everyone's expressions... it hurt. why did it feel like he was at fault? why wouldn't they believe him? jeno had doyoung hyung and donghyuck had taeyong hyung and jaehyun hyung. but what about him? who was on his side?
"trash is gone," ten suddenly said, coming from the kitchen, "they must have taken it out this morning."
donghyuck didn't take the news well. he pushed taeyong away and ran out of the room. taeyong and jaehyun quickly ran after him.
jeno started to blame himself. jaemin knew how much he hated it when they fought, but when he tried to go to his best friend, to try and make him feel better, doyoung looked at him sternly, warning him without words to stay away.
despite all the ruckus, jisung finally came out of his room. he took one look at jeno, at doyoung and at renjun who was also comforting him, and asked, "what happened?"
jaemin was about to explain but it was ten who said, "it's nothing you should worry about, jisung ah. come on, hyung will make you breakfast."
as ten pulled jisung to the kitchen, jisung looked back at jaemin, "jaemin hyung?"
"don't mind him, jisung ah. i think jaemin needs to reflect on some things. like where he put the notes."
jaemin winced. he really didn't throw it. he didn't. but why won't anyone believe him?
"wait, hyung. notes? what notes?"
"jisung, i told you. don't mind it."
ten was usually very, very kind to them and so very tolerant of their antics. but when he used that particular tone, everyone knew he was serious. jisung immediately clammed up, but not without frowning worriedlyat jaemin.
as ten and jisung disappeared in the kitchen. and as jeno, renjun and doyoung moved to jeno's and renjun's shared bedroom, jaemin was left alone with his thoughts.
was he so tired last night that he accidentally threw away mark's notes? did he really not notice they were music sheets? if everyone thought he threw them away, then it must be true, right? but he knew he didn't. he really didn't, but... if there was one thing jaemin couldn't stand, itwas seeing his friends sad or in pain.
there really was only one option: he had to find the notes.
not out of self-preservation, but out of pure instinct, jaemin put on a cap and pulled on a hoodie. completely forgetting about the fever, and without telling anyone what he was about to do or where he was going, jaemin strode out of the dorm and left.
he was going to find those notes even if it was the last thing he was going to do.
i'm so, so sorry for the long wait!! but thank you still, for waiting! to all those who left comments and messages in my cc, i hope you guys know that you are the reason why this chapter exists! thank you all so much for the encouragement! <333
(See the end of the chapter for more notes.)
even if it felt like he was wading through water, jaemin stubbornly made his way to their apartment’s waste collection area. fortunately, it was inside the building.
unfortunately, it was very much empty.
one of the maintenance staff who had accompanied him, an aunt who had the softest spot for the young idols, looked at jaemin in concern, “i’m so sorry, jaeminnie. all the garbage must have been collected already. but,” she said, in an attempt to make him feel better, “it’s mark. i’m sure everything will be okay if you tell him you’re sorry.”
jaemin smiled at her and nodded. and while he understood how simple his problem looked like to her, she wasn’t there when it happened, she didn’t see how everyone looked at him with so much disappointment in their eyes, didn’t know how it hurt how the hyungs were so quick to choose sides and yet no one chose his.
so he kept on smiling at her and thanked her for her help and before she could say anything else, he turned around and ran out of the apartment. ignoring her calls to come back, that it was raining too hard, that he could get sick, that his members would worry, jaemin just kept on running. in the distance he could still hear the thrum of a garbage truck’s engine. if he’s fast enough, maybe he could still catch up to it. maybe he could fix everything before it gets worse.
because this was never about asking for mark’s forgiveness. mark is the kindest person he knows. jaemin knows mark would grant his forgiveness as long as the apology is sincere.
no. jaemin was going through this because he was terrified of being treated like he did something wrong, terrified of the annoyed glares and judging faces, terrified of being treated like an outsider. he already knows how that feels like after coming back from therapy-- the silent communication, the inside jokes that he sometimes felt were aimed at him, the giggles behind his back, the bonds they all formed because of shared experiences. and while he wasn’t afraid of confrontation, wasn’t afraid to stand up for himself, jaemin was so, so tired. it was just easier to fix the problem than expend energy trying to defend himself. what was the use if no one was going to listen anyway? jaemin knows that they all care about each other very much. but some were just loved more than others.
jaemin had never minded it. he, himself, would defend jisung to death. and so in times like this when emotions cloud judgement, jaemin found it easier to let it be, easier to apologize and accept whatever it was they’re accusing him of rather than fight for something he’d have to fight alone.
it was easier. but it still very much hurts.
after all, he’s their dongsaeng too, right? and their friend, their hyung. why, then, do they treat him differently?
so he ran. never mind how heavy the rain was, how awful he was feeling by the minute. he had to find those notes. he had to.
except, no matter how fast he ran, no matter how much he pushed himself, jaemin couldn’t catch up to the garbage truck. oh, he’d see the back of it as he rounded corners, but it was still raining hard and he’d stumbled and tripped so many times and he was definitely, definitely sick. he’d known it was impossible, but he still had to try. in his desperation he followed the truck for as long as he could and now he was lost.
in an alley in a neighborhood he didn’t know, slumped miserably against a wall breathing heavily, jaemin wondered if it was okay to return without mark’s notes. he had to return at some point, but would they even open the door for him? in his haste he’d forgotten his keys, even his phone. by now all the members would have found out what had happened. if he came back without the notes, would they all look at him like it was all his fault? would they ignore him like he didn’t exist? would anyone speak to him at all? his gut churned at the thought.
logically he knows that his members would never treat him that way, that they were probably worrying about him for being gone so long without telling anyone. but jaemin’s mental capacities weren’t exactly functioning properly because of the fever. so even if his body tells him to go back, even if his mind tells him that there’s no use, that he wouldn’t be able to find those notes, the fear of being rejected was pushing him on.
in the hope of feeling less tired, jaemin slapped his cheeks then grit his teeth and braced himself before shakily standing up. he had to lean heavily against the wall but his success lifted his mood up. unfortunately, it didn’t last very long for the moment he took a step forward, the world spun and he was back on the floor, more winded and more exhausted than before. he was a lot more filthy too, his favorite white hoodie now an ugly brown from the mud stains on the wall and on the ground. he had cuts he didn’t remember getting and he could feel bruises beginning to form in his arms. and with the amount of dirt he’d acquired from sitting in this alley, he’d probably end up getting some sort of infection on top of being sick.
and yet despite all of this, despite the probable danger he was putting himself into, jaemin could think of nothing but getting those notes back. so he kept on trying to stand up, kept on trying to walk. but every time he would, he’d just fall back down, more tired than before. it was like he was going crazy, like he was stuck in a loop he couldn’t get out of, but he kept trying anyway.
jungwoo and yukhei found him like this.
in their shock at seeing him in such a state, they panicked and attempted to manhandle jaemin onto yukhei’s back. the shock only increased when jaemin fought back, shouting at them to let him go, that he couldn’t go back, that he hadn’t found mark-hyung’s notes yet, he had to find them, he had to!
they attempted to calm him down, told him that the notes weren’t important, that everyone just wanted jaemin back home, but jaemin didn’t believe them. he yelled that it wasn’t true, that they were only saying that to make him come back, that everyone must still be mad at him because he still hadn’t found mark hyung’s notes.
in the ensuing tussle, all three of them ended up on the ground. jungwoo and yukhei were kneeling in front of jaemin who had slumped again back against the wall. he’d wrapped his arms around his knees and he’d hidden his head between them. he was breathing hard like he’d run a mile. and even in the dim light as the rain kept on falling, both of them could clearly see him uncontrollably shivering.
jungwoo felt like crying.
he’d known jaemin for years now. they practically grew up together. but not once in all that time had he seen jaemin look so tired and defeated.
“jaeminnie,” jungwoo called, so soft he could barely be heard from the mad rush of the rain, “no one is mad at you, i swear. so please. please come home with us.”
jaemin shook his head, “i can’t go back, hyung. not without mark hyung’s notes. i have to find it. i have to. everyone loves mark hyung so much. and haechan and jeno too. if they’re sad, then everyone’s sad. and they’re all mad at me cause they think i did it. if they’re mad at me, then everyone is mad at me. i don’t want that, hyung! i already know i’m not as important. they’ll be so mad at me for a long, long time if i don’t fix this. so i need to fix this, hyung. i need to. i have to find mark hyung’s notes,” raising his head and looking at jungwoo and yukhei with so much desperation in his eyes, jaemin begged, “please, hyung. please let me find mark hyung’s notes. please let me fix this. i can fix this. i can. i just need to find hyung’s notes. i need to—,”
yukhei couldn’t take it any longer. overwhelmed with the need to protect, to erase the hurt and pain and desperation from the younger boy’s eyes, he took jaemin into his arms and held on to him tight. filled with so much emotion he could barely contain it, yukhei desperately implored, “stop it! stop thinking that way!” he yelled, his voice swelling with feelings, his eyes welling up with tears, “you are as important as mark, as jeno, as haechan. as all of us! stop thinking that way because it’s not true! it’s not! the hyungs… the hyungs were just being stupid, nana. they were just being really, really, really stupid!”
jaemin didn’t say anything, obviously unconvinced.
yukhei grit his teeth, his frustration with the hyungs flaring up again. it could have been so easily resolved so he was so, so disappointed with the way they handled a problem this small. he felt like shouting at something, anything, just to release all these pent up emotions, but he couldn’t. he didn’t want jaemin to misunderstand. so he just held the younger boy tighter, hoping that it could at least convince jaemin that he was telling the truth.
jungwoo, in turn, was feeling just as angry. he’d balled his fists so tight he wouldn’t be surprised if they bled. when the manager hyungs were asking where jaemin went, when the whole issue of mark’s missing notes was told, jungwoo couldn’t stop himself from yelling at the hyungs that were there. how could they put the blame on jaemin without knowing the full story? why didn’t they at least hear the boy out when he said he didn’t take them? how did they let such a small problem become this big? and now this.
jungwoo understood how the hyungs just wanted to console donghyuck and jeno, that they all simply wanted to fix the situation as quickly as possible. jungwoo knew that none of them were prone to accuse someone without knowing the entire story. and today? today simply just wasn’t their day. he understood this but he was still very much angry.
and so very much heartbroken for jaemin.
“jaeminnie, no one is mad at you,” he tried again, “taeyong hyung and jaehyun hyung and ten hyung and doyoung hyung… they’re all very sorry for what they did. jeno and haechan aren’t fighting anymore. they just want to see you back home. so come back with us, okay?”
jaemin weakly pushed against yukhei. yukhei reluctantly let him go.
for a moment, jungwoo thought jaemin would finally agree to come home with them but jaemin just shook his head and muttered that needed to find the notes over and over and over again.
jungwoo was worried now.
“he’s really sick, hyung,” yukhei whispered, his eyes also filled with worry, “i don’t think he’s thinking straight anymore.”
taking a deep, deep breath, jungwoo reached out and took jaemin’s face within his palms. making the younger boy look at him, jungwoo said firmly, “jaemin ah, listen to me. listen to hyung, okay? the notes? there’s no need to find them. they were never lost, never misplaced. you never lost them, jaemin ah.”
that stopped jaemin completely.
jungwoo smiled shakily at him, “it was… jeno was supposed to keep them, right? but jeno left after eating, claiming he’ll only wash up. and jisung… jisung was hiding in the bathroom like usual, trying to get away from cleaning. but jeno forced him out, made him help you. and well, jisung saw the notes and thought… he just wanted to play a little, jaeminnie. he never meant to cause this much trouble.”
both jungwoo and yukhei hadn’t wanted to tell this to jaemin, at least not until they got him home, because they were uncertain how the younger boy would react. jaemin rarely got angry, but in the few times he had… he’d storm off and would refuse to listen to any of them, closing himself off completely. he preferred to deal with his anger alone until he felt himself rational enough to talk and clear things up. but the boy was clearly sick, has been since last night as tearfully told by jisung. if jaemin were to run off, if jaemin would hide himself away from them… both of them feared what could happen to the younger boy. they both felt it would be better if they could get jaemin home and warm and taken care of before he got worse.
and he was worse. jungwoo and yukhei were already freezing because of the continuous rain. what more jaemin, who had been out for hours and hours?
they were ready to catch him if he bolted, but jaemin stayed still, looking blankly at jungwoo.
finally, he spoke, “so they’re not lost? mark hyung has his notes now?”
jungwoo nodded stiffly.
but their fear was in vain because jaemin just slumped forward then rested his head limply on yukhei’s shoulder. as if it were instinct, yukhei wrapped his arms around the younger boy, looking down at jaemin in rising concern.
“i’m glad,” jaemin sighed, his voice weakly trailing off, “they’re okay now, right? they’re okay. everything will be okay.”
“yeah, but it’ll be better if we get you home, right, nana?” yukhei urged, tightening his hold, “you’ll come with us now, right?”
but jaemin stopped responding. his breathing was more labored than before and his eyes were shut as if he was in pain. he was barely hanging on to consciousness.
yukhei’s eyes widened in fear. he looked at jungwoo and stammered, ”h-hyung, he’s… i don’t like this, hyung. his temp is… he’s—,”
“i’m calling the company. there’s a clinic there. and it’s near,” jungwoo quickly interrupted, giving yukhei a trembling smile, “he’s gonna be okay, xuxi ah. he’s gonna be okay.”
swallowing down his panic, yukhei took a deep breath and said, “it will take too long if we wait, hyung. i’ll carry him instead.”
“are you sure? xuxi, are you sure?”
yukhei nodded, determined, “if we wait too long who knows what could happen. he could be hurt somewhere we can’t see. or, or—,” shaking his head, removing all negative thoughts, yukhei held on to jaemin, “help me put him on my back, hyung.”
they maneuvered a now fully unconscious jaemin on yukhei’s back. and when they were sure the younger wouldn’t slip off, yukhei carefully but quickly headed for the company.
when they were nearly there, yukhei breathlessly asked, “will you call the hyungs? tell them we found nana?”
jungwoo, who was supporting jaemin’s back while holding an umbrella over their heads, paused. then he snorted and said, “let them stew in guilt for a while.”
that made yukhei laugh, “evil! that’s really evil, hyung! remind me not to make you angry after this!”
jungwoo just smiled tiredly, “at least until we’re sure he’s okay. i don’t want to think about anything else right now. i don’t think i can.”
yukhei understood so he smiled back, just as tired and drained as the elder boy. tightening his hold on their younger brother and knowing that jaemin wouldn’t hear but needing to say it anyway, yukhei whispered, “it'll be okay now, nana. we’re here for you. we’ll always be here for you.”
hours later, they finally, finally receive news about jaemin.
“jungwoo says they’re on their way back. and uh,” johnny stopped, hesitating, afraid how this bit of news could affect his friends, “he says they’re sorry for not calling right away but they had to take jaemin to the company clinic cause his fever was too high. but he’s okay now!” he said in a rush as doyoung stood up, ready to leave, “he’s okay. he just needs a lot of rest.”
when doyoung slowly, slowly sat back down, johnny sighed in relief.
this entire thing was a nightmare.
today was supposed to be a day of rest, but none of them could do that now.
and all because no one took the time to listen.
johnny couldn’t blame anyone though, because he, himself, couldn’t tell how he would've reacted if he were in their places. they were all tired, all looking forward to a day just to themselves. he could understand the need to resolve the problem as fast as possible to take advantage of their limited time to rest. he could understand what happened truly was a mistake, that no one wanted to hurt jaemin, no one would ever think of such a thing. he understood that, but he also understood that it was difficult not to put blame.
which was why he understood jungwoo and yukhei’s reactions, their frustrations and anger. they all did. neither taeyong or ten, or jaehyun or doyoung, nor the younger boys, were offended by the accusations thrown at them. on the contrary, they all readily accepted it.
they were all blaming themselves already, after all. even now.
taeyong and ten were both visibly distraught. ten hadn’t moved from his position since they all realized that jaemin was missing, and worse, that he was sick since last night. jaehyun, who was always so calm and composed, looked absolutely devastated. doyoung was the opposite. he had raged and raged that he was the one who should be out there finding their missing member, that it was his fault, his responsibility. mark was deathly silent and pale. jeno just kept on staring at nothing. renjun had locked himself in his room. donghyuck had cried himself to sleep. and jisung… jisung had curled in on himself so much he was practically invisible.
johnny wanted so bad to comfort them all, to make them understand that although jaemin’s predicament was a consequence of their actions, none of them meant to hurt the younger boy and that they could all make it up to jaemin once he returns. but jungwoo’s voice was cold and clipped when he called. and instead of calling their leader, instead of jaehyun or doyoung who looked after jaemin the most, instead of mark or donghyuck or jeno or renjun who all were the closest to jaemin, he’d called johnny instead. johnny dreaded it, for they were signs that jungwoo, and possibly yukhei, were still very much affected.
johnny hoped, that in the time there was on their way back to the dorms, that the two could find it in themselves to calm themselves, to forgive. because reminding the members that there was no one to blame, that everything was simply a series of unfortunate events, was hard enough. picking sides would be an absolute nightmare.
like everyone, johnny wanted this to be over, but he knew that it would take time, would take more than words of forgiveness, to heal all wounds.
even then though, johnny would probably have nightmares about today.
those long, long hours with no knowledge of one of their youngest’s whereabouts were nothing short of torture. johnny would never be able to forget the fear he felt when they realized that jaemin was missing and was sick, was out there in the rain in a daze, searching for notes that weren’t missing to begin with.
thinking about it hurt.
as it should.
because today, they all truly failed jaemin.
when jungwoo, yukhei and jaemin returned, the youngest could barely walk by himself.
he was leaning heavily on yukhei, his head bowed, his eyes downcast and dull, lifeless, he was drawn and pale and even though there were beads of sweat on his forehead, he looked cold and was visibly shivering.
doyoung was the first to move, desperate to make amends, to make things right, but jungwoo stepped in front of him.
“not now, hyung. please?” jungwoo’s voice was soft and quiet but the warning there was loud and clear, “jaeminie’s temperature is still high. he needs to rest. he doesn’t need anything else.”
he doesn’t need you, was the unspoken message.
jungwoo steadily held doyoung’s eyes, as if daring the elder boy to protest. when doyoung backed down, jungwoo turned his back at all of them.
“come on, xuxi,” he said, his tone infinitely more gentle, “let’s get him to bed.”
yukhei paid no attention to the members around him, his focus solely on jaemin. and though they all wanted, needed, to make sure that jaemin really was okay, yukhei’s tense shoulders, his narrowed eyes and the way he was almost possessively holding onto the younger boy told them he was not in the mood to be generous.
accepting that jungwoo and yukhei wouldn’t let anyone come close, they all gave the trio a wide berth, allowing the two overly protective hyungs space to steer jaemin into his bedroom.
earlier, jungwoo had raged at them for dismissing jaemin’s side of the story, for letting him believe that it was his fault, his responsibility to fix, for not caring enough to at least make sure he was okay. because just because jaemin never needed anyone to look out for him doesn’t mean it wasn’t wanted, wasn’t needed, wasn’t deserved.
jaemin had always been giving. now they realize that all they had done was take, take and take.
there was no taking back what happened today, but at least they could do better tomorrow.
jaemin was here now, was okay.
everything was going to be fine now. right?
i would not have gotten the drive to complete this chapter if it wasn't for you, naimi~ thank you sooooooo much for reaching out to me! let's keep on talking more in the future!! <33
to Demi_dings as well! you've stuck by this for a loooong time, your patience is astounding! thank you so much for always leaving comments and for offering support, for always reminding me that there are people who are interested in this story ;~; whenever you leave a comment, i could write just a bit more, adding little by little until this.
i thought i could finish this in three chapters, but ending the chapter here didn't feel too bad XDD i hope you all liked it!