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Brothers

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Jinhyuk never expect himself to have a friend who is 8 years younger than him. A close one at that. 

But here he is, sitting in a barely alive café in the corner of the street, Jinwoo sits beside him with both hands holding a cup of coffee. Jinhyuk doesn’t know if it’s still called a coffee with the amount of milk and sugar in it. Just seeing it makes Jinhyuk cringe. But since Jinwoo likes it, he has nothing to complain.

Jinhyuk stares as Jinwoo sips on his coffee. There’s some left on his lips and Jinhyuk wipe it with his hands immediately. Jinwoo smiles and Jinhyuk can’t help but coo.

Yeah, Jinhyuk never expect himself to have a friend who is 8 years younger, but he never regrets having him.

“If I don’t know any better, I’ll think you guys are real brothers.” Seungwoo, the owner of the café, says. He’s wiping the glasses now, before putting them on the rack. “You guys have this aura on you.” He’s swirling one of his hands towards them.

“What are you saying….” Jinhyuk laughs. “We’re brothers, right, Jinwoo? We’re closer than any brothers could be.”

Jinhyuk starts tickling Jinwoo’s chin. Seungwoo shakes his head, always amazed by the two.

Seungwoo leans on the counter where Jinhyuk and Jinwoo choose to seat. “Tell me how you guys meet again.”

“You’ve heard it a thousand times already!” Jinhyuk complains. Jinwoo just laughs on the older’s reaction.

“We met when Jinhyuk hyung leaves school early, he was being a naughty student.” Jinwoo starts. Like Seungwoo, Jinwoo likes this story as well. “He climbed the back gate….”

Jinhyuk sighs loudly, but it doesn’t affect Jinwoo. Seungwoo is already has a smile on his face, anticipating. Jinwoo continues with giggles between his words, “But got his pants stuck and rip it, thankfully he still managed to get down safely. I watched the entire time.

“It would be suuuuuuper ridiculous if I hand on the gate with my pants stuck. I will lose my face. I will literally go home to bring all my clothes and my piggy bank then move to another country and change my name.” Jinhyuk shakes his head dramatically. It got Seungwoo laughs louder, banging on the counter twice. 

“When I got down, pants ripped and all, there’s a little angel watching the entire time,” Jinhyuk sighs again. He’s always dramatic, Jinwoo thinks. “The first thing that popped inside my head was I had to bribe this kid. To never tell anyone.”

“You treated me to Halmeoni’s tteokbokki. It was super delicious.” Jinwoo is giddy just thinking about it. He’s craving Halmeoni’s tteokbokki for a few days already. Jinhyuk promised him the will eat it for dinner tonight.

“Yeah, sadly it wasn’t enough to bribe you. Look at you now telling this story every chance you have.”

“I have to tell the story if someone asked.” Jinwoo juts his chin towards Seungwoo.

“Seungwoo hyung, why do you like this story so much? Do you just want to tease me?”

“Nooo,” Seungwoo says. “It just reminds me of my own kid.”

As if been summoned, the cafe’s door rings. The three of them turns their head towards the door. 

“Speak of the angel.” Seungwoo says fondly. “Come here, my lovely child.

Dongpyo, the kid Seungwoo who just comes in, clicks his tongue. Though he looks (playfully) annoyed, he still walks towards Seungwoo. The older immediately pulls him into his embrace.

“I told you I’m not your child.” Dongpyo complains with muffled noise, he says it everyday but Seungwoo still calls him his child. 

“You’re my child. I adopt you.” Seungwoo says when he holds the younger  loosely .

“I still have my parents back in my hometown.” Dongpyo says.

“You live with me here. I adopt you. Period.”

It’s a harmless banter, and they have it almost everyday. Jinhyuk and Jinwoo often watch them do this too.


Jinhyuk takes a glance toward the clock and panics. “Jinwoo-yah, let’s go now. It’s almost time for your dental appointment.”

Jinwoo nods and stands up. “Thank you for the coffee, Seungwoo hyung. We will come visit again soon.”

“Okay, cutie pie.” Seungwoo ruffles the younger’s hair. Dongpyo who is still half hugging Seungwoo, simply smiles and waves his hand toward the other two.

“We’re going, hyung. See ya.” Jinhyuk grabs his and Jinwoo’s coats. He waits while Jinwoo uses his coat and uses his own too. He waves his hand once again towards Seungwoo and Dongpyo before going out for real, another hand wrapping Jinwoo’s shoulder.

 

 

After they leave, Seungwoo says to Dongpyo, “They’re on another level, huh. Jinhyuk even brings him to dental appointment.”

“Hyung, we’re on another level too. We have no blood relation but you let me live in your house.”

“It’s because I love you. You’re my child, my angel, my cutie pie.”

Dongpyo rolls his eyes. “Stop it, hyung….” He whines. The older laughs and pulls him into his embrace once again.