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eternal sunshine

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Warm sunlight cascaded down on his skin, warming him and filling his senses with utmost pleasure. He couldn’t be in Seoul anymore… It had been on a jag of rain and clouds and was nothing compared to what he was experiencing in this moment. Warm wind kissed his face, making his hair whip around.

 

“Woojin,” A sweet toned voice pierced the air, making Woojin’s ears perk up. He turned to see Jihoon, his black hair also gently whipping against his forehead in the wind. A pink tint had spread across his cheeks as his smile took up the bottom third of his face. He’s so beautiful. Woojin thought to himself, watching as the younger boy outstretched his hand toward him. Woojin wanted to take it-- he wanted it more than anything but it was like there were vices keeping his hands glued to his side. He could only watch as Jihoon waited, starting to fade away. Jihoon opened his mouth again, the sound of an alarm bellowing from between his lips that made Woojin jump.

 

Woojin was definitely dreaming.

 

He stirred awake, blindly tapping the screen of his phone to shut his alarm up before he got annoyed and just chucked it at the wall. He hated the sound of the alarm more than anything because it meant he had to go to class-- which when he wasn’t freshly awakened, he actually didn’t mind going since he was in his last year of university. He also hated when he had dreams like that about his dear friend Jihoon. He had known Jihoon for nearly three years. He had moved into the same dorm as Woojin when he was in his second year. Woojin had been the resident assistant on his floor, meaning he was charged with making sure everyone had an easy time moving in and felt welcomed. Jihoon had struck Woojin’s heartstrings even back then. And he’s honestly been whipped for the boy ever since. However, he recently had been dreaming of him at least once a week and to be honest, it was getting quite frustrating.

 

Woojin finally hit the stop button on his phone and sat up in bed, rubbing his eyes and running a hand through his brunette locks. Woojin full well guessed he should get ready for class.

 

***

 

Of course, Woojin couldn’t escape his dream that replayed in his head when he saw Jihoon across the main square of campus. Jihoon was sitting on a retaining wall, phone in hand as he looked down and tapped wildly away at the screen. A slight smile was upon his face, causing his cheeks to look a bit plump. Woojin found himself wearing a similar expression, casting it away as soon as he realised it was there.

 

He sighed deeply when he saw Jihoon’s girlfriend attach to his side, watching Jihoon’s smile grow when he saw her and wishing so desperately to be the one that put a smile on his face like she could. He groaned, thrusting his fists into the muffler pocket on his hoodie and propelled himself toward his dear friend who had started listening to his girlfriend tell a story about something that had happened the night before.

 

Jihoon’s girlfriend was Kang Minji. She was a nice girl, Woojin had to give her credit for that. She was in an academic sorority and she kept her grades up while maintaining some semblance of a social life and she seemed to keep Jihoon happy. Fucking wonderful if you asked Woojin.

 

“So I told her that she wasn’t supposed to just understand the answer to the problem immediately. She was supposed to use an algorithm. Hey, Woojin.” Minji said, acknowledging Woojin as he stood there, awkwardly listening in on their conversation.

 

“Hey Minji, hey Jihoon.” He said before taking a seat next to Jihoon on the wall, trying not to stare too intently at him.

 

“Minji can you help me study for my music theory class? I’ve literally got no idea what I’m doing there.” Jihoon pouted and Woojin could’ve punched himself.

 

“Mm, I’m busy tonight, I have stuff to do with the other girls.”

 

“I can help you, I passed the 301 class last year.” Woojin pipes in. Jihoon looks at him with a blank expression and Woojin can’t help but to cheese, giving Jihoon a huge smile. Jihoon grinned back at him.

 

“Thanks, should I come to your dorm since you room alone? My roommate is still kinda…”

 

“Yeah, yeah, my room would be fine, I know how your roommate can be,” Woojin nearly choked on the last word. Fuck. He only got this way around Jihoon and only recently when he realised how much he actually felt for him. The feelings he harboured for Jihoon kind of came out of nowhere. He remembered exactly when it happened and it's a moment that Woojin continually replays in his mind on a loop, trying to see exactly why he felt the way he did and if he could somehow move past it… But truth be told, Woojin would be damned if he lost feelings for Jihoon at that point. He secretly loved the suffering.

 

Since Woojin was an RA for their floor in the dorm, he had to group them together and do ice breakers so that people could get to know each other better and hopefully make some friends along the way. Woojin had told everyone to partner up with someone so that they could get to know each other better and to Woojin’s surprise, Jihoon ended up being the odd man out. At that time, Jihoon was nineteen years old with chopped hair and cheeks so chubby that it made him look even younger than he was. And it really didn’t help that he had gotten a bit of a late start at university.

 

“We can just do the exercise together.” Woojin had said, offering him a smile which he kindly returned. There was a party the last night of the orientation where Jihoon had gotten wasted and he wasn’t really the best at taking care of himself, so Woojin stepped in. And it was sitting across from Jihoon at 4am in a twenty-four hour diner that Woojin had fallen for Jihoon. The way the red and purple lights from the neon signs cascaded on his skin, illuminating him like a utopian angel. And how he was so effortlessly beautiful inside and out... They ended up fucking hitting it off and Woojin swears that Jihoon doesn’t even feel the connection because months before the second term of the year ended he had started dating Minji. Woojin couldn’t help but to roll his eyes, and his dear friend, Daehwi, had told him to not worry because relationships like that in college don’t last. But it's been about two years since then.

 

Woojin figures that they do last.

 

 “Ah, we should probably get going to class, it's nearly ten.” 

 

“Right, yeah. I’ll see you later, Minji.” Jihoon said. They all rose to their feet and Woojin stepped back as he watched Jihoon kiss her, his eyes going wide before sending an aching pang through his chest, his gaze shifted to the ground as they broke apart from each other. Woojin started to walk away, letting Jihoon follow behind whenever he was done saying goodbye to Minji. He heard shoes scrape against the pavement as Jihoon’s face slammed against his back before he caught himself. Jihoon giggled and it was literal music to Woojin’s ears.

 

“Sorry,” he said, matching Woojin’s footsteps as he walked beside him.

 

“Don’t worry about it, are you okay?”

 

“Yes. I just lost my footing for a second.” 

 

Woojin let his eyes linger on Jihoon’s face as they kept walking in the pique of the awkward silence that followed, watching how it looked when it was relaxed and unaware of the eyes that gazed upon it. He was so unintentionally beautiful, the way his lips pouted out, how his eyes cast down to the ground to watch his steps (more careful since he had nearly fallen), and his dark eyelashes that jutted out from his lids. Woojin shook his head, a last-ditch effort to shake thoughts like these from his mind because he knew that Jihoon was the ultimate unattainable prize.



***



Woojin had lost himself completely in his last class of the day-- which was basically a two hour “class” where he played piano. It was technically a performance preparation class, but Woojin always felt ready and comfortable to play the piano. In fact, it was the only thing he was really sure about anymore. It was always so constant, how he would walk into the classroom and take himself to one of the soundproof booths with nothing but a piano inside. How the keys moved under his command as he played beautiful music with just the touch of his fingers… It felt liberating to sit there and forget everything around him.

 

Woojin heard the door click open behind him and he grinned gently down at his hands as he tickled the ivories. He knew Jihoon had walked in just based on his aura that spread in the practice room as soon as he had entered. Woojin finished playing what he was in the middle of and took a deep breath before turning to face Jihoon.

 

“Woojin…” It was almost as if Jihoon was in disbelief. “That sounded so beautiful, is it new?” Jihoon sat on the end of the long piano bench next to Woojin and glanced at the piano keys before he looked at Woojin, anticipating his response. 

 

“I composed it… It's still just a draft but I feel like I’m making some progress.” Woojin rubbed the back of his neck and shrugged, silently shrinking inside from Jihoon’s “That sounded so beautiful,” 

 

“Are you kidding? It's still a draft? I can’t believe I have such a talented friend . Can you play it for me from beginning to end? I want to hear it all.”

 

“Of course, anything for you.” Woojin said, chuckling a bit at Jihoon’s request as his head swelled four times bigger than its typical size.

 

He lined his fingers up on the keys, closing his eyes and inhaling deeply. He let his body take over everything, propelling his fingers to stroke the keys as the mallets within the piano struck chords just as Woojin directed them to. He felt the music in his veins, coursing through his body; he lived in it and he was eating it up all around him. He bobbed a little bit as he really got into it, letting the notes guide him as he was suddenly hyper aware of Jihoon’s presence next to him and to be honest it was kind of making him tingle and feel nervous. Woojin’s eyes opened slowly as he glanced to Jihoon beside him. He had taken out his phone and-- wait, was he recording Woojin?

 

Jihoon was wearing the biggest goofiest grin that Woojin had ever seen as he watched him through his phone’s camera. Woojin flashed Jihoon’s phone a smile before losing himself in the music again. Before he knew it, the song was over and his fingers were resting on the last keys that he played as he savoured the fleeting moment, his last few seconds of complete solace. 

 

“So?” Woojin’s voice hung, stretching out the word.

 

“You play so beautifully. You’re going to go places one day, you know that? You’re going to be famous and I won’t accept anything else.” 

 

“Ah, no. Don’t say that, Jihoon, you’re too much.”

 

“I mean it! Passion really goes a long way and I can see how passionate you are.”

 

Woojin paused, unable to stop the smile that gently splayed itself on his face as he cast his eyes down, looking at something he considered the love of his life before closing the fallboard on the piano and grabbing his backpack before standing.

 

“Thank you.” he headed for the door, opening it and standing, waiting for Jihoon to get up and make his way out the door.

 

“Where are you going?” Jihoon stared at him quizzically from the piano bench.

 

“You want me to help you pass your music theory class, don’t you?”

 

Jihoon looked down for a second, obviously taken by surprise. “Fair enough.”

 

* * *

 

“Jihoon… it's the second month of classes, how do you still not have rudiments down?” 

 

Woojin and Jihoon sat across from each other on the floor, Woojin with his legs stretched out in front of him and Jihoon sitting cross legged with his notes placed neatly in his lap. Woojin clutched a pencil in his hand, wagging it back and forth and letting it weave in between his fingers. Jihoon’s phone buzzed in his pocket, the vibration audible over the thick silence. Jihoon took it out, rejecting the call and sliding it away from him on the floor. 

 

“Listen, I only took this class for my music credit. I’m a dance major not a musician, ugh. I’m going to fail, aren’t I?” Jihoon covered his face with his hands and sighed into his palms.

 

“You took a level 300 class for a required credit, Jihoon. That’s pretty questionable behaviour.”

 

“Please… I don’t need you pointing out my questionable judgement. I’m suffering enough.” Jihoon’s hands slid down his face to his chin, resting his elbows on his knees and holding his head up. “Can’t you just… do it for m--”

 

“Jihoon, rudiments are so easy that I could literally do them in my sleep so it's going to be nothing to teach it to you. Come here so we can look at this paper together.”

 

Jihoon scooted himself to Woojin’s side and made Woojin regret his request almost immediately. Jihoon has more or less melded himself into Woojin as he looked at the paper and waited for him to explain rudiments. He relaxed a bit, letting his leg push against Jihoon’s, and when Jihoon made no effort to get away from him or say anything about it, he felt a bit better about the whole situation.

 

“Alright so, what do you actually understand?” Woojin tried his best to look Jihoon in the eye, but in this position it just wasn’t possible. Jihoon sighed, resting his elbow on Woojin’s thigh and resting his chin in his hand again.

 

“Can we like… take a break? I feel so dumb.” He huffed

 

They had just started, but Woojin really couldn’t bear to say no to Jihoon-- he just couldn’t bring himself to. “Yeah, of course.”      

 

Jihoon brought his knees up, wrapping his arms around his legs. He looked up at Woojin and the breath was ripped from Woojin’s lungs as their gaze met. God, Jihoon really was beautiful, Woojin couldn’t stress it enough in his mind. He could stare at him all day if Jihoon would let him… as if he’d ever ask. 

 

“You’re not dumb, by the way. I’m making it out to be easy but I am a music major… So I guess it just comes to me naturally.” Woojin paused, wondering if he should really ask what’s on his mind. “Do you… do you just want me to do it for you?” Woojin regretted his words, he knew he had work due himself for classes… But he would do anything for Jihoon. Plus, he passed the class last year so it should be nothing, right?

 

“Ah, I couldn’t ask you to do that, Woojin.” Jihoon’s eyes were downcast.

 

“It’s really no big deal, I’m really not busy or anything. I’ll have it done by tomorrow.” Woojin wanted to be someone else so he could punch himself in the throat. He was definitely busy and he definitely would have to struggle to get it done by the morning, but Woojin was hell bent on being Jihoon’s personal nerd just to make things easier. 

 

“Honestly, that would be great.” Jihoon’s phone started buzzing again, this time louder as it droned against the floor. Jihoon tsked before reaching out to get it. “Listen, I really have to go. Minji wants me to go with her and her friends to look at dresses for their event they’re hosting in a few weeks. And then we’re going to go meet up with her brother.”

 

“And you enjoy that?” Woojin chuckled, masking the pain he felt spread through his heart.

 

“Well, she is my girlfriend, so…” and the minor pain turned into an explosion.

 

“I’ll see you later, Jihoon.” Woojin rose to his feet, following Jihoon to the door and sliding on his own shoes as well.

 

“See ya. Thanks again, Woojin.”

 

* * *

 

“You really let him bully you into doing his homework for him?” Daehwi was nursing a plate of fries as Woojin scribbled away at the paper that Jihoon had left with him.

“Shut up, he didn’t bully me.” Woojin paused, looking up at Daehwi. He had on glittery eyeshadow and some lip gloss-- which was actually pretty tame compared to what he usually wore on his face. Woojin liked the way the eyeshadow reflected gold in the light. Woojin pushed his headband back up onto the plain of his forehead as it had started to fall over his eyes. “I offered.

 

Woojin had to admit, the two were an odd pair sitting in the middle of such a basic looking cafe. Woojin, a bright blue headband strapped around his forehead with his faded hair that used to be a reddish brown that had now turned to a soft caramel colour. He had on a faded denim jacket and black fingerless gloves. It was cold outside but honestly, Woojin would have worn them regardless. Coupled with a button up shirt with a bright floral pattern on it, tight black jeans, and black leather chelsea boots, Woojin was quite a sight himself. 

 

It didn’t help that Daehwi also didn’t make the most “normal” choices in what he wore, he really picked whatever he was into, regardless of what body it was meant to go on. His only limit was heels, he refused to put himself through that kind of torture. Today, Daehwi had a pink fur coat draped over his shoulders, a black turtleneck with cap sleeves paired with faux leather pants, strappy black flats, and a breton cap that really tied it all together. Daehwi looked chic as fuck and he knew it and Woojin would be lying if he said he didn’t think that Daehwi was the most beautiful person he knew inside and out. He was one of Woojin’s best friends.

 

Daehwi rolled his eyes, popping a fry into his mouth. “You’ve got to stop pining over straight boys, Wooj. Especially the painfully straight ones.” 

 

“I just like him so much, Dae.” Woojin put his face in his hands and looked on at Daehwi who just laughed at him, chucking a fry at his covered face.

 

“How are you so pathetic over him, has he even ever done anything for you?”

 

“I’ve told you the stories before, you know what we’ve been through together.” Woojin reeled his mind in, trying not to think of the nights that he and Jihoon had just stayed up talking about life, their dreams, their fears, all that cliche shit. And how he always insisted on letting Jihoon take his bed and Jihoon insisting that it’s big enough for the both of them since Woojin had a double. And how Jihoon could be a bit grabby with his hands, putting his arm around Woojin or lacing their arms together, or just simple touches. All of it drove Woojin mad, but there wasn’t a thing he could do about it.

 

“Why don’t you just tell him you like him?” Daehwi took a sip of his water, playing with the straw and pushing around his ice when he sat it back down on the table and letting his gaze stay unwavering as he looked on at Woojin. It's one of the things that annoyed Woojin about Daehwi. He had a way of looking at you that would make you spill everything in your head out to him, tell him anything that he wanted.  And Woojin hated that.

 

Woojin choked out a strangled laugh that was obviously pained and took on a manic sound and Daehwi grimaced at him. “You’re so goddamn cute sometimes, Daehwi, you know that?”

 

“I’m cute all the time, but that’s beside the point. So, why?”

 

“Ugh, do you even know what it's like to have feelings for someone who will never reciprocate them? Jesus. How could I even tell him? It would ruin everything, Dae. Everything. Our friendship we’ve built over the past couple of years would be for nothing and I really can’t give that away. I adore him too much to let him know.” Woojin felt completely and utterly defeated.

 

“Are you still going to Jisung’s party this weekend?”

 

“Of course I am.”

 

“You’re bringing Jihoon, getting him drunk, and telling him. It’s going to be the only way you can ever get it off your chest and the first step to moving on.” But I don’t want to move on. Woojin kept it to himself.

 

“What if he remembers? It would be the end of me.”

 

“He won’t remember, I’ll run defense and makes sure he gets plastered. Don’t worry about a thing, baby.”

 

Woojin was skeptical, he did feel kind of good about telling Jihoon-- at least in some shape or form. It would be like lifting weight off of his shoulders, weight that he had been holding for more than two years. But Woojin knew in his mind, he wouldn’t be able to let Jihoon go, Daehwi was crazy if he thought that Woojin was going to get over Jihoon just like that. He lacked the resilience that Daehwi had and seemed to think that Woojin also had in terms of feelings. 

 

But, hell. Woojin would give it a try.

Chapter Text

Woojin had Jihoon in his arms. They were tucked in a cosy apartment with a big woollen blanket draped over their legs. Jihoon was resting between Woojin’s thighs on their big plush couch, his head leaning back onto Woojin’s chest and he placed a couple kisses onto the top of Jihoon’s head.

 

“I love you so much.” Jihoon’s even-toned voice was like music to his ears. He couldn’t help the smile that became prominent on his face as he nuzzled his head into Jihoon’s shoulder, his lips fluttering small kisses at the base of his neck. 

 

“I love you, baby.” Woojin breathed into his neck as Jihoon looped his arm around the back of Woojin’s head, turning his own to face him and pressing a kiss against his lips. The kiss was innocent, playful, and soft. It lasted only a few seconds before Jihoon pulled back and grinned from ear to ear, his eyes flitting from Woojin’s eyes, to his lips, then back again.

 

Woojin was in heaven as the gentle sound of light rain padded against the windows, ushering in even more warmth from the touch of Jihoon’s body against his. Nothing could reach them, they were completely isolated from the outside world and Woojin had never felt so happy. Everything was so good. No one could disrupt them. Ha ha. 

 

“Wakey-wakey, Woojin baby.” his voice was smooth but Woojin came out of his deep sleep fighting the air.

 

Daehwi showed up in Woojin’s room bright and early wearing ripped jeans with fishnets poking out, and a black crop top with a heavy face of makeup on the morning of Jisung’s party. And to say that Woojin was confused was an understatement. Woojin valued his sleep more than anything to say the least. It startled him when he opened his eyes to Daehwi smiling over him, his hand on his shoulder as he gently shook him awake.

 

Daehwi ducked out of the way and laughed as Woojin sat up in bed, rubbing his eyes and cupping his swollen face in his hands. He took a deep breath, combing his hair with his fingers. Daehwi had taken a seat in Woojin’s desk chair and was facing him.

 

“Daehwi. How did you even get in here? Holy shit you scared the piss out of me.”

 

Daehwi laughed again, a giggle that warmed Woojin. He loved hearing his best friend laugh and the sound alone helped Woojin to forget what had made him annoyed initially.

 

“Don’t mind the specifics, it’s not what’s important. Today’s the day, Wooj; we have a lot to do to get you ready.”

 

“Fuck, what time even is it?” Woojin patted his bed until his fingertips came in contact with the cool metal and glass of his cell phone. He clicked the home button, bringing it close to his face so he could see the time without the inebriating blur of his tired eyes. “6:54? Ugh, why this early, Daehwi.” he fell back into his bed and covered his face. Daehwi took it upon himself to sit on Woojin, straddling his hips and pushing forward on his chest with his hands.

 

“Get up or I’ll strangle you to death, Park.”

 

“What do we even need to do that requires me to wake up this goddamn early?” Woojin said through his hands, muffling his voice.

 

“Well, I wanted to get your qtip fuzz for hair fixed first of all. And I wanted to play dress up, you’ll be like my own life size doll.” Daehwi took his hands off of Woojin’s chest and leaned back, using Woojin’s raised knees as a support.

 

“You want to fix me up… to get my heart broken…”

 

Daehwi fell silent for a moment, realising the magnitude of what Woojin was going to do tonight. He didn’t want to fix him up just to get his heart broken-- the point of this was to make Woojin feel good so he would be confident. Daehwi had a trick or two up his sleeve. 

 

“It’s not that, I just want you to feel good.”

 

“You know I don’t have that much money. I’m not going to be able to afford where you go, Tae.”

 

“For fucksake, stop worrying about this, can’t you trust me?” Daehwi slid off of Woojin and stood in the middle of the room. “Just get dressed and trust me, we’re following a plan here..”

 

“Jesus Christ.” Woojin groaned. 

 

***

 

Jisung’s house wasn’t huge by any means but it was a decent size for a party with enough rooms that everyone could be spread out and disperse when they needed to. Woojin was terribly anxious as he waited outside the house. He was painfully on time which meant that the crowd was nearly nonexistent and Daehwi wasn’t even there yet. Jihoon crossed his mind as he listened to the music that was already playing inside and he started to feel warm, closing his eyes and leaning against the brick. He ran a hand through his hair which had been restored to its natural noir shade and was much softer than it had ever been-- Daehwi’s hairdresser could really work miracles. Daehwi was right about one thing, the fact that he looked good did make him feel a lot better… like he could take over the world, do anything he wanted.

 

He had dressed himself in his go-to party outfit which consisted of ripped light wash jeans, his all-white adidas (which had gotten a little beat up over the past couple of years), and a crimson-coloured Metallica shirt. Woojin honestly didn’t listen to Metallica. He owned it solely for aesthetic purposes and no one had asked him to list any of their songs, or asked his favourite album; so Woojin felt good about it.

 

By then, partygoers started to trickle in and Woojin took the chance to people watch, getting lost in the crowd as he saw people coming in, looking at what they were wearing, who they were with, and their expressions. He felt a hand on his shoulder and turned to see Daehwi.

 

“Are you ready to go in?” Woojin nodded and followed Daehwi into the void. The atmosphere changed so drastically as he stepped through the threshold of the house. The lights in the house were replaced by black lights, the music-- which already sounded loud outside-- was thumping so loudly that Woojin could feel it in his chest, and the smell of alcohol was strong in the air, mixed with sweat and the party had only just begun. Jisung greeted them at the door. The boys were actually pretty good friends and Jisung was always happy to see Woojin. 

 

“Glad you could make it, Woojin. Hope you don’t get as wild as last time!” Jisung shouted and laughed over the music, making Woojin cringe. He thought back to the last of Jisung’s parties, one that he surely didn’t remember but had been heavily documented on twitter and Woojin had seen the video way too many times for his own liking. 

 

It was in the middle of the last semester and Woojin was of course pining over Jihoon. The past couple of years since he had been trying (and failing) to get over him, he had started kind of... slutting it up quite a lot because the only way to get over someone is to get in someone. With some sick irony, Woojin did as he always had. Jisung used to have parties every single weekend and Woojin went to all of them because he could usually find a cute guy to take back to home and fuck, forgetting it ever happened and burying his feelings in his dick.

 

He had gotJihoon pretty good at being numb and not giving a shit about anything at all, pretending that he wasn’t some big, soft, emotional guy who was hurting every time he looked at Jihoon and Minji together… He was good at hiding it all away and locking it inside. He stopped caring so much that he got so drunk that he blacked out-- which hadn’t ever happened to him before because he was a pretty heavyweight drinker. He doesn’t remember doing anything that was chronicled on the videos but he was definitely the one on the screen.

 

The video starts out dark and you can hear fabric rustling against the mic of the phone it was recorded on. The screen suddenly illuminates and the top of Woojin’s head is bobbing, almost like it was floating in water. He looks up, his eyes red and watering from nearly choking and a hand slides down his cheek, cupping his chin. Woojin leans his head over and kisses his palm before he trails kisses down the head of his…

 

Woojin shakes the memory of the video out of his head, pulling himself from his thoughts and trying to forget that he had the whole video memorised by now. He hated the fact that it existed, he wished he would have made better decisions back then. I’m a dumb bitch. He thought to himself, falling into another memory that came soon after the video surfaced. Of course he was hanging out with Jihoon when he got the text from Daehwi telling him to check twitter. Woojin honestly didn’t use twitter much so he had turned off the notifications for the app. Frankly, he didn’t care for it. When he had opened the app, his internet buffered and when it had refreshed, his notifications had blown the fuck up. He scrolled through, seeing himself mentioned in tons of tweets that said things like 

 

“I can’t believe you really did this…” 

 

“This is going to be on the internet forever, are you stupid?”

 

“I’m surprised he showed his face in the video… anyone with half a brain would at LEAST obscure their face.”

 

“Do you even think?”

 

Woojin was confused as fuck to say the least, scrolling through all these mentions… until he found the source of it. Some account with the display name “Kai” had posted the video and captioned it with “Park Woojin has head game.” 

 

Woojin could feel his heart drop when he saw the video begin to play. It was almost like an out of body experience, or maybe he wasn’t himself, perhaps it was all a dream. Woojin had started shaking, realising that this was real and that there was really nothing he could do about it. Jihoon had crossed the floor and had his hands on Woojin’s shoulders, telling him to calm down-- which Woojin didn’t understand why until later. He had started having a panic attack and he was breathing so hard and loud that Jihoon thought he was going to fall over and faint right there in front of him. Jihoon grabbed water for Woojin and tried to hand it to him but he was too hysterical to even think about drinking water. Woojin didn’t know what to do with himself as he stood from where he was sitting and put his hands on his head.

 

“What am I gonna do, Jihoon?” Woojin’s face was turning red and he wanted to cry but the tears just wouldn’t come out. 

 

Jihoon was up by his side in an instant, looping his arms through Woojin’s and hugging him. His head hit at Woojin’s chest and he tried to be as comforting as possible. Woojin felt like everything was completely fucked, but he also felt like he was at home for the first few seconds that Jihoon was in his arms. He rested his cheek on the top of his head and wrapped his arms around him. And that night, Jihoon stayed with Woojin and was more than happy to let Woojin hold onto him when he slept. And he didn’t say anything when Woojin started crying into the back of Jihoon’s head. He just grabbed one of Woojin’s hands that was gently clinging to him and held onto it tight. 

 

Woojin swore, frustrated that the memories had taken over his head while he just stood there in the middle of the party— which was mostly full by now. Woojin had a red cup shoved in his hand by Daehwi who had been around, just mingling and seeing what kind of crowd had came in tonight. Daehwi came close to Woojin’s ear. 

 

“They’re coming in, I’ll take care of Jihoon.” He said, disappearing in the small wave of people with a drink in hand. 

 

Woojin looked toward the front of the room and saw Jihoon come in with some guy trailing him. He was average height with blonde hair and a familiar face. The guy was smiling and the expression seemed to never leave his face. Woojin leaned back against the wall he was beside and waited for Daehwi to do his thing.

 

Woojin downed what was in his cup and longed for the burn that he could no longer feel when he drank. At this point it was all the same to him, everything felt weak. He watched as Jihoon and his friend made their way toward him. Jihoon made eye contact with Woojin and the biggest smile spread across his face; he sped up, getting to the tower of a boy who leaned against the wall and was eager to introduce the boy beside him.

 

“Hey fatass!” Jihoon was excited to see him, so much so that he rushed himself into Woojin’s arms. He held onto Jihoon for as long as he could before feeling him pull back to his original position. “This is my friend, Kang Euigeon. He’s Minji’s brother!! He goes by Daniel.”

 

People were starting to get too close to Woojin for his liking as bodies nudged against him and people brushed past. The other two seemed to be okay with it, but Woojin wanted to shrink. Daniel beamed at Woojin with the same happy expression he was wearing when he walked in the door. The boy was cute. His eyes were bright and full of life and his nose scrunched every so often… it must’ve been a nervous tick. 

 

“Hey Daniel, my name’s Woojin.” Woojin did a little wave and offered up a smile. 

 

“Hi. It's good to meet you, Jihoon talks about you all the time. I’m glad I can finally put a face to the name.” Daniel chuckled a bit as the last word left his mouth. 

 

Jihoon talks about you all the time. 

 

“I see some people from my university here, I’m going to go say hello. I’ll catch you guys later!!” Daniel whisked himself away. Woojin wasn’t surprised that Daniel had friends here. He seemed like the type that everyone wanted to be friends with. He was friendly and cheerful. Who wouldn’t want to be friends with him?

 

“So you talk about me all the time?” Woojin smirked as Jihoon took his place next to him and leaned against the wall to see the party in full swing on display.

 

“Of course I do, you’re one of my best friends. Where’s the drink fairy?” he meant Daehwi, he had a knack for putting drinks in the hands of his friends at parties— which is why Daehwi making sure that Jihoon got plastered was such a good idea. It was normal for him to drop drinks randomly and you could really never knew what you were going to get when you took a swig out of the plastic cup. He had brought Woojin a half-full cup of everclear before and Woojin drank it blindly. He was more than surprised when the drink passed his lips to say the least. 

 

“I haven’t seen him in a few minutes, he should come through soon, though. He’s like an ice cream man, just stick your hand out and he’ll know you want a treat.” 

 

Sure enough, Daehwi was back in a matter of minutes with two cups of tequila in his hands. He gave one to Jihoon and the other to Woojin. He ducked into Woojin’s shoulder.

 

“Jihoon’s has a shot or so of everclear.” He whispered, patting Woojin’s shoulder before going on his way, stopping to talk to people along his route.

 

Woojin watched with clear eyes as Jihoon took a swig of his drink, grimacing at the burn. He was a lightweight anyways, he could never hold many drinks before he got to the point that he couldn’t take care of himself. Woojin, of course, wouldn’t let him get to that point because that would be wrong, but he did want him to be at least a little drunk when he told him the big news so that he didn’t remember it.

 

The beat of a familiar song pulsated through the partygoers and Woojin suddenly felt alive. He had to dance, he couldn’t help but to feel the beat of this song.

 

“Wanna dance with me?” Jihoon looked at him with a raised eyebrow and Woojin could nearly kick himself, feeling like a complete dumbass. “Come on, Jihoon. Live a little.”

 

Woojin turned to stand in front of Jihoon, taking him by the wrist and dissolving the two of them into the horde of people. He found a place that felt right and let the music move him and Jihoon soon followed suit. He stood on his toes, leaning in toward Woojin’s ear so he could be heard over the music.

 

“This is fun, we’ve never danced together before.” Jihoon was smiling when he pulled back from Woojin.

 

“You’ve known me for three years, I’m kind of a catch, Jihoon.”

 

Someone knocked Jihoon forward and making him press against Woojin. It was sick irony that Jihoon was always falling into Woojin all the while Woojin was falling for Jihoon. Woojin could’ve gagged himself with a spoon. When Jihoon straightened himself, he didn’t step back. The song ended and Woojin couldn’t take his eyes away from Jihoon’s. The loud room felt silent and empty, almost like he was in a bubble. He felt himself leaning forward and he knew that Jihoon wasn’t drunk but he couldn’t help himself, he wanted to kiss him so bad, he wanted to tell him everything that was on his mind. His head was screaming I’m in love with you! I’m in love with you! But nothing came out from his lips,

 

“What song was that? It was so fucking good.”

 

Woojin snapped back to reality and felt sweat trickle on his temple. He felt dazed as the music began to drone in his ears again and the bass filled his chest.

 

“It was ‘Chun-Li’ by Nicki Minaj. It’s catchy as fuck, right?”

 

“Yeah it was, I’m going to have to listen to it again later, it can be our song.” Jihoon laughed and Woojin swooned. 

 

Commotion broke out toward the front door as Woojin turned his head to see what was going on.

 

“MINJI!” The small group of people who were more or less huddled around the front door were cheering as Minji walked through the door. Woojin’s heart sank. She isn’t supposed to be here yet, if even at all. 

 

Woojin looked back at Jihoon to see his smile directed at Minji rather than him now. Jihoon separated from Woojin to go great Minji. He made it over to her and kissed her cheek. Woojin’s fist balled involuntarily and he dug his nails into the palm of his hand to stop from doing anything stupid or irrational like crying right here in the middle of this party. He watched as Minji’s hand fit into Jihoon’s and he pulled her toward Woojin. Woojin wanted nothing more than to have Jihoon’s hand fit into his, it just wasn’t fair. He panicked as he saw them progressing toward him, turning and scanning the crowd to try and find Daehwi’s head amongst the sea of people. The only familiar face he could find was Daniel standing alone to the side. He had a cup in his hand and he looked terribly uncomfortable, the smile he had worn earlier was gone and his eyes had grown wider than before. Daniel looked up and his doe-eyes made contact with Woojin, the grin returning to his features and Woojin couldn’t help but to return it back to him.

 

Woojin cut the swarm of people, closing the gap between him and Daniel until he was face to face with the boy.

 

“Hey, did your friends leave you?” Daniel nodded, taking a sip out of his cup.

 

“They had to go. They only stopped by to see Jisung and so… they left me.” Daniel laughed again but it didn’t hold the same bubbliness as before, it was more pained than anything.

 

“You know Minji’s here?”

 

“Huh? Oh, no I didn’t. That’s unfortunate. I hate being around them when they’re together. They make it so awkward, I hate the hets.” Woojin could tell that Daniel with speaking with gentle distaste in his voice. “I love Jihoon to death, and I obviously love my sister. But together…” Daniel shook head head and took another drink from the red cup.

 

“You’re gay?” Woojin could only fixate on the fact that Daniel had referred to them as “the hets.” He almost laughed out loud when the words had left Daniel’s mouth.

 

“I’m bi, actually. I like boys more, though. Sometimes the het just jumps out.”

 

Woojin actually laughed at that, a small laugh, but a laugh nonetheless.

 

“I’m gay. One hundred percent. No doubt about it.” Woojin shifted on his feet. He had always been gay but he had never said it out loud before. It was a big step and he immediately felt a tad bit uncomfortable as he felt Daniel’s eyes on him.

 

Daniel paused, finishing off his drink. “Hey, you wanna dance?”

 

The offer took Woojin by surprise, but he, of course, did love to dance.

 

“Yeah, sure, that sounds like a lot of fun.”

 

Jihoon was pushed from Woojin’s mind for the time being as he took Daniel’s hand in his, Daniel fitting his fingers between Woojin’s and holding on for dear life. It felt nice. Nice enough. Woojin stopped at about the middle of the room and Daniel was more than eager to dance with Woojin. The song that was playing had a very groovy sound to it, people around them were grinding their bodies together, bashing at the hips like paper dolls. Daniel and Woojin were no exception.

 

It had been a long time since Woojin had done something like this-- he had stopped being “promiscuous” whenever The Video had surfaced. It felt good to let go and to let some cute guy grind himself against his crotch. Woojin bit his lip and he couldn’t stop his hands from attaching to Daniel’s hips and following them as he vibed to the beat of the song against Woojin.

 

The song eventually came to an end and the boys managed to break apart from having air sex. Daniel looked at Woojin and pulled his phone out of his pocket.

 

“I’m going to ask my sister when we’re leaving, but I was wondering if I could get your number so we could maybe hang out sometime?” Daniel’s eyes were pleading and Woojin could never bring himself to say no. He took the boys phone from his hand and punched in his number, sending himself a text from his phone so he could put his contact into his phone later. Daniel split the crowd once again and made his way to where Jihoon and Minji were standing, a little off to the side but still in the flow and group of people.

 

It felt like it had been hours since Woojin had spoken to or even thought about Jihoon. He had to be more drunk by now, he had to be. Daehwi should’ve been taking care of it whilst the party was going, and Woojin trusted that Daehwi had done what he was supposed to do, he felt even better when his eyes flitted over and saw Jihoon gripping his red cup with a big goofy grin on his face.

 

Woojin saw his opportunity and seized it as Daniel had begun talking to Minji and Jihoon was standing there, gently separated from the two as they talked. Woojin followed the line that Daniel had walked and approached the three of them, grabbing Jihoon and pulling him by the upper part of his arm and whispering in his ear.

 

“Do you want to dance again?”

 

The song was decently slow, enough that it would be more of a song to talk to than anything.

 

“A little slow, isn’t it?” Jihoon’s speech was a little slurred.

 

“Please, I can dance to anything.” 

 

Woojin and Jihoon started to weave to the beat of the song. It was a slow jam, making it hard to do anything but sway in place.

 

This is it. You just have to say what’s on your mind and then fuck off because he won’t remember any of it. You can do this, Park. Your life has been leading up to this. Your fuckboy days have prepared you to do this. Say it. Say it. Say it you little bitch.

 

“Jihoon, I need to tell you something.” was all he could manage to get out of his mouth initially. Jihoon looked up at him, a tiny smile splaying itself on his lips causing them to be shaped like the number three. God, he was so fucking cute. “Jihoon…”

 

Woojin’s voice trailed off as he thought about what he was doing. He was really about to tell Jihoon that he had feelings for him. Not only that, but that he was in love with him. Woojin could barely breathe.

 

“Yeah, Woojin? What’s wrong?” Jihoon didn’t sound as drunk anymore, but Woojin’s words had already started oozing from his mouth, he wanted to pull them back but he couldn’t. He couldn’t fucking stop himself.

 

“Jihoon… I like you. I really like you.” Woojin said. Jihoon nodded.

 

“I like you too, Woojin. You’re a really great friend to me.

 

“No, no. I mean… I really like you.” Woojin’s words spewed out of his mouth like water out of a hydrant. 

 

“I love you too. We’ve been friends for a long time.”

 

“I don’t mean like that. I really like you.” He tried to press himself to say more, to continue his train of thought; he regretted it again when his brain started pushing words from his mouth. “I wish we could be together. I’ve liked you for a long time, Jihoonie. I wish I could be more than your friend.”

 

Jihoon’s eyes had gone wide and his lips had parted and Woojin knew that something along the way had gone so terribly fucking wrong. Jihoon’s reaction was all wrong, he should’ve been taking it with a grain of salt and not looking at Woojin like he was the biggest fucking circus freak he had ever seen in  his life. Woojin took a step back, he felt like everyone was staring at him as he couldn’t bear to break eye contact with Jihoon as his eyes bore into his soul.

 

“Woojin…?” Jihoon only said one word, but it was enough to make Woojin head for the hills. He turned, running straight into Daehwi and smashing two red cups filled with mystery alcohol between their bodies. It spilled down the front of Woojin, barely getting a drop on Daehwi.

 

Daehwi’s eyes looked past Woojin and at Jihoon. He did a double take, realising what had just happened and he looked at Woojin in horror.

 

“You headass, I wasn’t ready!” he yelled over the music. Woojin pushed past him, speeding past Minji and Daniel, not giving them the chance to speak to him.

 

He was out on the street quickly, making his way down the sidewalk and hooking a left into the convenience store that was about a block away. He strolled right up to the counter. He had to look like a damn mess. He could feel his clothes sticking to him from how high the temperature was in the party. He knew his hair was probably fucked up, and he knew he smelled like alcohol from how much had spilled on him on his way out.

 

“Two packs of Esse, please.”

 

The attendant gave Woojin a look of disapproval before turning and retrieving the two white boxes from the shelf behind her. She rang up the transaction on the register and took his money. He told her to keep the change as he grabbed his cigarettes and hurried out of the bright lights and back onto the dark street.

 

Woojin had to get away from people. He didn’t want to see anyone or talk to anyone, he just wanted to be alone. He had fucked up a good friendship all because his dumbass plan had gone awry. I’m so fucking stupid, I should’ve waited, I should’ve fucking waited. Woojin wanted to kick himself. In fact, he wanted to bury himself alive so he wouldn’t have to face Jihoon in class on Monday morning. He didn’t want to exist, he just wanted to leave.

 

Woojin finally ended up at a familiar place. He had walked a pretty decent distance and had ended up at the University’s baseball field. He climbed the bleachers, skipping a couple steps at a time and finally feeling hot tears trickle down his cheeks. He didn’t bother wiping them away. He sat down on one of the many rows of bleachers near the top, his phone pressing tightly against his leg from inside his pocket and he could feel it buzzing wildly. He took it out, placing it next to him on the metal seat and opening one of the packs of Esse that he bought.

 

Woojin hadn’t smoked in a long time. He was so proud of himself for quitting cold turkey and never going back… but old habits die hard. He clutched the cigarette between his lips and lit it, inhaling the smoke and letting it fill his lungs. He exhaled, letting the smoke leave him. The smoke kind of burned his throat where it had been so long since his last smoke, but it brought a rush of calmness over him that wouldn’t be there otherwise. The tears still silently fell down his cheeks as he grabbed his phone. It was still buzzing beside him and it was starting to irritate the fuck out of him.

 

He was getting a call from Daehwi. One of the last people he wanted to talk to in this moment. He felt like his chest was going to burst, his heart was hurting so bad and he was so fucking embarrassed. He couldn’t escape the immense pressure he felt, it was almost an unimaginable pain. He rejected the call and powered off his phone, swinging his legs over the bench and stretching them out, laying back on the bleachers and looking up at the sky. He was uncomfortable as fuck, but at least he had a nice view of the stars tonight.

 

Looking at the stars always made Woojin feel so small and insignificant-- and he liked that. Any issue he had, the vast skyline always put it into perspective just how small he really was in the grand scheme of things. Woojin smoked a couple cigarettes, letting them cradle him in their toxic embrace while they burned his throat and nose.

 

He didn’t remember falling asleep there, and he honestly didn’t plan to sleep at the baseball field but to be honest the fact that Daehwi could apparently get into his dorm whenever he damn well pleased, Woojin figured he was better off here. The sun rising high above him, blinding his senses is what woke him up the next morning. He groaned, his neck and back aching more than they had ever in his life. He rubbed his eyes, his brow furrowing as he sat up and looked around him. He was still alone and he was thankful for that. Happy that a groundskeeper hadn’t come to kick him out during the night because the last place he would want to go is home. 

 

Woojin was cold, he wrapped his arms around himself as he rose to his feet. He nearly went off and left his phone laying there on the seat, but grabbed it right before he walked away from the field. As he walked down the once before travelled sidewalk, he brought his phone close to his face, turning on the device and watching it power on. His home screen popped up before a stream of messages flashed onto his screen as well as missed calls. He saw texts from Jihoon, but as soon as he saw the name from which the messages were sent, he swiped them to the left, getting them out of his notifications so he wouldn’t even have to think about the fact that Jihoon existed and knew how Woojin felt about him somewhere out there. But Daehwi had sent him dozens of messages, clearly worried about Woojin and his whereabouts.

 

Daehwi 1:13 a.m

I’m so sorry Woojin… I didn’t know you were going to go for it so early, I would’ve done more if I knew. Please call me back.

 

Woojin, please.

 

1:25 a.m

I know you’re mad at me but I’m worried about you. You don’t just disappear like this.

 

Where are you???

 

3:01 a.m

I’m in your dorm now and I’m really fucking worried about you, kid. What the fuck? 

 

You better be okay.

 

This is my fault, please Woojin. Just come home we can talk about it. I can help you make this right.

 

4:44 a.m

I’m so sorry.

 

Woojin let out a deep sigh, putting his phone in his pocket and picking up his pace a little. Daehwi had sent the last message at 4:44 which was just a little over an hour ago, he had to be in Woojin’s dorm still.

 

***

 

Sure enough, when Woojin walked into his dorm and slipped his shoes off at the door, Daehwi was crumpled in his bed sound asleep. Woojin walked over to him, not even hesitating and shook his shoulder. Daehwi’s eyes opened and he immediately sat up in bed, putting his arms around Woojin and hugging him.

 

“You big dumbass, where the fuck have you been?” he said as he embraced Woojin. 

 

Woojin broke away from him and ran a hand through his fucked hair.

 

“Please, I’m okay I just want to be alone. Can you leave?” Woojin’s voice shook as he spoke, the remnants of tears prominent as he tried to stay strong.

 

“Let me stay with you, Wooj. I’ll get you some food and something to drink. You look horrible.”

 

“Daehwi, please.”

 

“Woojin, I’m so sorry for everything, please, I--”

 

Woojin shook his head, silencing Daehwi. He looks sad and Woojin knows that he’s sorry-- he’s honestly not mad or upset with Daehwi in the slightest. It isn’t Daehwi’s fault; it's his own. He’s the one who fucked everything up because he was impatient and couldn’t wait. This was all on Woojin. Daehwi rose to his feet, slipping his shoes on at the door and stepping out into the hallway.

 

“Text me if you need anything, please call me when you feel like it. And stop fucking smoking, you smell like an ashtray.”

 

Woojin was silent until Daehwi was out of his dorm. He shed himself of his clothes and fell back onto his bed, clutching one of his pillows that was on the bed and pressing it against his face. He revelled in the cool fabric for a moment before he screamed into the stuffing, trying his hardest to let out some frustration with himself and just the whole situation. He stared up at the ceiling and gazed at the cracking paint above him. He wanted to forget that yesterday had ever happened. He thought that he was doing pretty good because it felt like yesterday was weeks, months, even years ago. He thought his efforts to shove the thoughts out of his head would be helpful, aiding him in forgetting all of this shit.

 

But, his efforts were fruitless. 

Chapter Text

The periodic knocks on Woojin’s door didn’t stop from sun up to sun down. He had managed to get out of going to class until Wednesday by telling his professors that he had contracted a stomach bug. Woojin wasn’t so much sad as he was angry at himself by Tuesday afternoon. He hadn’t really stepped out of his dorm since he had gotten home on Sunday morning. And he didn’t really plan to leave until his little sick leave was over and he’d have to return to class at 10 a.m bright and early on Thursday morning. He’d have to see Jihoon at ten and he was dreading even the thought of it. The good thing about all of this was that once he finished both packs of Esse, he didn’t have the urge to run out and get another pack. In fact, he really didn’t have the urge to do anything.  He didn’t eat, he didn’t talk to anyone, he didn’t really even move. 

 

Woojin finally let Daehwi in on Wednesday morning. Rather, he yelled an impish “come in,” at the door. Woojin was sitting on the floor with his back against the bed. He had been drinking and his eyes were heavy with enervation.

 

“Woojin, come on. Change your clothes, let’s go eat chicken and then we’re going to Dore Dore.” Daehwi paused as Woojin looked up at him with his dark eyes. “How long has it been since you’ve eaten anything?”

 

“Since Saturday. I’m not hungry.”

 

“Stop being a headass, Wooj. Get dressed or I’ll drag you out of this room in those crusty clothes. And don’t give me that look.”

 

Woojin was pouting up at Daehwi with his arms crossed. He was acting like a child, being stubborn and not listening to what he knew he should do. And, admittedly, he was being a goddamn headass. Despite how stubborn he was, he did get up from the floor. He stumbled a bit, the alcohol he had been consistently drinking over the past few days still a bit prominent in his brain. Daehwi was over at his wardrobe, sifting through clothes before pulling out a pair of jeans and a t-shirt and tossing them at Woojin. He went to go wait out in the hallway whilst he got dressed.

 

Woojin emerged from the room with the energy of a rain cloud. Daehwi put his arm around his shoulders and pulled him down the hallway. The pair said nothing, but it was a comfortable silence. Everything was always comfortable with Daehwi. Woojin was thankful he could always be completely himself around him. Woojin loved Daehwi with his whole heart and Daehwi felt the same for Woojin. Their friendship was impeccable. 

 

Daehwi dragged Woojin to Sai Chicken which was a fairly new restaurant in Seoul that he had been wanting to try for a while now. They sat down across from each other and of course they attracted looks from the other people going about their day just because they looked a little different. Daehwi’s outfit today was pretty reserved compared to what he typically wore, choosing to wear a cropped black hoodie, black jeans that were ripped in the knees with checkered vans. A bored waitress made her way over to them as they did a once over of their menus. She looked at Woojin first, asking what they wanted to drink.

 

“I’ll take a beer.” Woojin said, giving her a gentle smile. Daehwi rolled his eyes.

 

“I’m paying, we’ll take two Dr Pepper’s, please,” he closed his menu and handed it to her. “We’re ready to order our food as well, we just want an order of chicken and fries.”

 

The waitress nodded and Woojin tossed a small “thank you” over his shoulder as she went to put their order in and bring them their drinks.

 

“How long are you going to be like this? You’re being a bit stubborn, Woojin.”

 

Woojin put his head in his hands, his elbows resting on the table. “I know. Thank you for taking care of me…”

 

“It’s what I do, Wooj. I know you’d do the same for me.” Daehwi took a drink of his Dr Pepper before folding his hands in front of him. “Do you want to talk about it?”

 

He rolled his eyes and Daehwi knew it wasn’t directed toward him. “I don’t know, I’m just the biggest dumbass and I know I caused all this shit and ruined my friendship with Jihoon so I just can’t pull myself out of this slump. I just want to go away for a while, lay low until it's all over, you know? I’m half tempted to go back home to Busan for a while.”

 

“Have you even tried talking?”

 

“Huh?”

 

“To Jihoon, I mean. You know you dumped your feelings on him and then you just… left… Has he tried to contact you or anything?”

 

Woojin reached into his pocket and pulled out his phone, handing it to Daehwi. “He has, I just can’t bear to look at it.” Daehwi took the device from his hands and unlocked it, navigating his way to Woojin’s text messages. “He also tried calling me a few times during the first couple of days but… he stopped that.”

 

“Why didn’t you answer? You didn’t even open any of his messages.”

 

“I know, I told you I couldn’t.”

 

Daehwi flipped Woojin’s phone around, showing him the messages that Jihoon had sent. He couldn’t look away, he just took the phone back from Daehwi and started scrolling.

 

내 사랑 후니 1:30 a.m (Sunday)

 

Woojin, please come back. Can we talk?

 

I hope you’re okay… Daehwi’s been looking for you.

 

내 사랑 후니 4:00 a.m (Sunday)

 

Sleep well…

 

내 사랑 후니 10:07 a.m (Monday)

 

You’re not coming to class…? Are you okay???

 

내 사랑 후니 10:30 a.m (Monday)

 

At least let me know you’re good. Please, at least give me that.

 

I’m worried about you, you were drunk and you just left and now you’re completely MIA.

 

“I wasn’t drunk, I can’t believe he thinks I’m a lightweight.” Woojin said, moving his arms off the table as the basket of chicken and fries were placed in front of him and Daehwi.

 

“It honestly takes so long for you to get drunk, I feel bad for you.” Daehwi let out a soft laugh and grabbed some chicken as Woojin continued reading.

 

내 사랑 후니 1:04 p.m (Monday)

 

A popup stand was selling ice cream in the pavilion today. I had half a mind to bring you some because I know how much you love it.

 

내 사랑 후니 10:43 p.m (Monday)

 

Sleep well Woojin

 

내 사랑 후니 7:02 a.m (Tuesday)

 

You have your performance class today, don’t you? 

 

내 사랑 후니 7:03 a.m (Tuesday)

 

Would be a shame if I just showed up lolololol.

 

내 사랑 후니 1:13 p.m (Tuesday)

 

You didn’t go to your classes today either >:(

 

This isn’t fair, why are you avoiding me? We’re friends, why can’t we just talk???

 

I’m getting a little frustrated at you. I really don’t understand you.

 

내 사랑 후니 12:49 a.m (Today)

 

Sleep well fatass.

 

내 사랑 후니 12:00 p.m (Today)

 

I saw Daehwi a few minutes ago. I asked him to go see you because I know you won’t run from him. 🙄

 

Hope he kicks your ass

 

I’m just kidding, I miss you being around

 

내 사랑 후니 12:03 p.m (Today)

 

I didn’t tell anyone btw. Not even Minji. No one knows.

 

Woojin’s eye twitched at the mention of her name… He’d just rather not think about her and Jihoon together. It was less painful that way and in fact, he had almost forgotten that she had even existed. Almost.

 

“He really did spam me, huh.” Woojin locked his phone and set it on the table.

 

“Let’s not worry about it now, Woojin. We’re at Sai chicken, it's expensive. So eat it before it gets cold.”

 

A small smile played itself on Woojin’s lips. He thought again of the messages Jihoon had sent about missing him and how he almost brought him ice cream just because he liked it. I fucking hate straight boys. He dug into the fries that were sitting untouched by Daehwi in the basket, stuffing them in his mouth. He was hungry, he hadn’t eaten in days and he had really started to regret it because it felt like his belly button was starting to gnaw on his spine. But he had ignored it, all in favour of being the stubborn bitch that he is. 

 

The boys managed to eat about half of the chicken that was served to them-- which was about six pieces… the portions at Sai were monstrous to say the least. Daehwi had the waitress box it up for Woojin to take home because he knew that Woojin wouldn’t feed himself again until he felt better. Daehwi paid and they made their way down the street to Dore Dore which is honestly what Woojin had been looking forward to since Daehwi had dragged him out.

 

They crossed into the cafe and were immediately hit in the face with the scent of various baked goods, the fresh aroma wafting through the room as they made their way to the counter. Woojin couldn’t hide his heart eyes as he ordered a slice of rainbow layered cake covered in thick white icing along with a glass of iced chocolate milk (it’s good, Woojin swears by it). Daehwi got nothing but an iced americano, claiming he was watching his figure. Woojin rolled his eyes at the slim boy before turning to go sit down at one of the many bistro tables scattered about the cafe. Daehwi sipped his coffee with his head resting on his hand, watching Woojin as he ate.

 

“Do you feel good, Woojin?”

 

Truthfully, Woojin did feel better than he did when he left his dorm a couple hours ago. His belly was full and he felt warm inside. His mind had stopped fixating on his mistake for the time being and he was just enjoying these moments with Daehwi. His best friend really did know how to cheer him up-- even if it was just from buying him chicken and cake. Woojin was a simple man. 

 

He nodded to answer the older boys question, his mouth too full of cake to elicit a verbal response. He held out a forkful of the colourful cake to Daehwi, threatening to fling it on him when he shook his head, putting his hand up in front of his mouth to signal that he didn’t want any. Daehwi rolled his eyes and leaned forward, his lips sliding over the fork and eating the cake. He wore an angry expression, his eyebrows furrowed as he chewed and he kept eye contact with Woojin.

 

“Don’t be such a baby, it's just cake.”

 

Daehwi flipped him off and Woojin’s eyes disappeared behind his smile as he took big gulps of his chocolate milk.

 

***

 

내 사랑 후니 11:32 p.m (Today)

 

Sleep well.

 

***

 

With the events of Wednesday still fresh in his mind, Woojin was prepared to face whatever was going to happen when he showed up for class on Thursday. He got up and got dressed, not wanting to prolong this shit anymore. He did, however, opt out of going to the retaining wall where he would usually meet up with Jihoon and Minji before class so that he and Jihoon could walk together. He ran his hands through his hair as the wind had developed a harsher bite to it. He wished he had slipped on a hoodie or at least a light jacket.

 

He showed up to class just as his professor had began talking. He had done that on purpose so that there would be no free time for Jihoon to come up to him and talk. He slid into the desk in the very back corner next to the door rather than going to sit in the empty seat next to Jihoon where he usually resided. Class went off without a hitch and Woojin actually got more done than he ever had before. He took coherent notes and paid attention to the entire lecture. He felt Jihoon’s eyes on him a couple times and ignored it when his phone buzzed in his pocket. He knew it was him. He just wasn’t ready for this yet. Not now.

 

When class was over, Woojin stood, gathering his things and shoving them into his bag.

 

“Woojin.” He heard Jihoon’s smooth voice for the first time in days and it sent an uneasy chill down his spine that caused him to freeze in his tracks for a moment. Jihoon’s voice was home, it had comforted him when he was sad or angry and hearing it made him want to drop everything and go weak for the boy. But Woojin remembered that Jihoon would never reciprocate the same feelings that he harboured. Things could never be as they were before because Jihoon now knew the truth about their friendship. Woojin took a deep breath, the realisation hitting him hard as he bit back tears that threatened to leak out of his eyes. He didn’t want to do this here, there were too many people to witness him crying over a boy that would never love him back.

 

Woojin made it back into the safety of his dorm and got ready for his next class, which happened to be performance prep. He dropped his bag at his door once he stepped inside and grabbed the box of chicken from his mini fridge, popping a few pieces into his microwave that sat on top of his bookshelf and placing the rest of the chicken back into the fridge. Woojin heard a knock at his door and called a “come in!” over his shoulder. He heard his door click open and close before a gentle gasp came from whoever had entered his room.

 

“I can’t believe you have a single.”

 

Woojin turned to see Daniel standing in the middle of his room, wearing a button down shirt that was paneled with different colours and his hair was styled the exact same way it had been the night the two had met. Woojin looked at him quizzically, questions running through his head and all he could get out was a broken:

 

“Uhhhh…”

 

“Oh, sorry. Minji told me where you lived. I hope that’s okay. I just really wanted to see you again and you hadn’t replied to any of my texts… And Minji said you were kind of being like that to everyone for some reason. So I decided to stop by.” Daniel’s face remained neutral. When he wasn’t smiling he looked so much like Minji that it wasn't funny. In fact it kind of made Woojin uneasy. He thought that dancing with Daniel at Jisung’s party was nice at the time-- which don’t get him wrong, it definitely was-- but now that Daniel was standing in the middle of his dorm, he was thinking back on his decision. He didn’t like the fact that he was here unannounced. He really wished he would leave, quite frankly.

 

“I’ve been going through some stuff so I didn’t want to be around people. Do you-- do you want some chicken?” Please say no, please say no. Woojin really didn’t know why he had even asked him in the first place.

 

“Sure, I love chicken.” Goddamnit. 

 

Woojin took the chicken that had finished being heated out of the microwave and handed it to Daniel. “It’s from Sai. I went there with Daehwi yesterday. You know Daehwi, right?” Woojin made his way back to his mini fridge and got the last of his chicken out, putting it on a sad paper plate and popping it in the microwave.

 

“I know his name, heard a lot of talk about him.” Everybody loves Daehwi. “Is there… anything going on between--”

 

Woojin cut him off with a sharp laugh. “Hell no, that’s my best friend. Nothing like that would ever happen between us.”

 

He retrieved his chicken from the microwave, stopping it right before the timer hit zero to avoid the beeping sound.

 

“Oh, good. That changes things.”

 

“Huh?” Woojin said through a mouthful of chicken.

 

“I’ve been thinking about you ever since the party... I kind of feel like we had a connection?”

 

“A… connection?” Woojin coughed, grabbing a water bottle from the plastic case that rested on his floor and cracking it open, taking long gulps.

 

“Yeah. You can’t tell me you don’t feel it too. We clicked.” They really didn’t. Daniel hadn’t touched his chicken and that kind of made Woojin the slightest bit irritated because he didn’t want anything to go to waste.

 

“Daniel, I really don’t know what to say to you…”

 

“You don’t have to say anything, you know.” Daniel stood up from sitting on the edge of Woojin’s bed, setting his paper plate of chicken on the sheets. He started to close the gap between them. 

 

“You know, I really have to get to class. So I should really go. But like, thanks for stopping by to see about me, I really appreciate your concerns. It was nice seeing you again, Daniel.” Woojin set his plate down as well, standing up so that he couldn’t be cornered and corralling Daniel to the door. “I’ll see you around.” 

 

“Oh, okay. Maybe some other time. See ya, Woojin.” He was relieved that Daniel didn’t put up any kind of fight.

 

Woojin shut the door and locked it behind Daniel. He leaned his back against the thick wooden portal and slid down, his knees coming to his chest. He laughed at the situation that had just unfolded. What the fuck? He couldn’t stop the giggles that fell from between his lips, running his hand through his hair.

 

He laughed even harder before he stood and grabbed the untouched plate of chicken, putting it back in the fridge and returning to his plate to enjoy his lunch before heading out to his performance class. 

 

Woojin managed to squeeze in a nap before he had to leave for class and felt surprisingly refreshed as he walked across campus to the music building. It was always nice walking across campus, the university he went to was pretty even in the fall when the flowers had died and the leaves had fallen from their homes on the high branches of the trees that loomed overhead. Woojin breathed in the scent, autumn filling his senses as wind shook the loose wood as it blew through the trees. October was Woojin’s favourite month, he loved when it came around because it always ushered in the cold weather and the best movies always played on TV. Woojin felt pretty reasonably happy in this little heaven he was existing in as he made his way to class.

 

When he situated himself on the bench in front of his shiny black friend, he for once didn’t know what to do. Looking at the eighty-eight keys looking back at him with their long white fangs and beady black eyes took him aback and he wanted nothing more but to leave. This was the first time Woojin had ever felt intimidated by the one thing that was always constant in his life. He hated this newfound feeling. He wanted nothing more than for things to go back to how they were. He had to at least try to play. This was his fucking major, after all.

 

He lined up his fingers on the keys and took a deep breath. His eyes closed upon reflex and began to tap the keys, banging the chords inside the body of the piano and ringing through the practice room. He had scared himself nearly to death thinking that he had stopped loving piano when all he had to do was play to get that feeling of being home again. The notes were beautiful, melodic, consistent, unchanging, everything that Woojin loved. He wanted to live inside of a musical note. To hear its perpetual sound ringing on and on into eternity. Actually, as he thought about it, that rather sounded like Hell. A consistent ringing. But Woojin really loved piano and the music he could make with it. This was his home. 

 

Woojin lay in bed that night, looking at the ceiling, his hair still wet from his shower. He grabbed his phone from his night stand, realising he hadn’t checked it all day. When he unlocked it, Jihoon’s messages opened automatically, showing Woojin what he had said during class.

 

내 사랑 후니 10:03 a.m (Today)

 

You’re here today :]

 

Woojin smiled at the message. He could see Jihoon’s smiling face in his head and he wanted nothing more than to see his smiling face in front of him. Woojin jumped when a new message buzzed through.

 

내 사랑 후니 11:43 p.m (Today)

 

Night, Woojin. Sleep well.

 

- 11:44 p.m (Today)

 

Goodnight. I miss you. :(

 

NOT DELIVERED

 

내 사랑 후니 11:44 p.m (Today)

 

I can see you typing and erasing it. Send it, pussy.

 

At least send me an emoji or some shit. Let me know you’re even getting these. At this point it's like I’m talking to a wall haaaa

 

- 11:46 p.m (Today)

 

John Wall

 

Woojin really hoped that Jihoon would know that John Wall was a basketball player because it completely ruined his joke if he didn’t know. Woojin locked his phone and fell into sleep’s sweet embrace, drifting keenly on Jihoon’s goodnight wishes.

 

Friday was an easy day. Woojin didn’t have any classes on Friday and he spent the majority of the day cleaning up around his room and airing out the stale smell that had formed from how stagnant the air was. Woojin brought out his fan from under his bed and plugged it in, letting it circulate the air in the room and plopping on his bed. His room had definitely improved from the state it was in this morning. Thank god it was over and he could relax before he started on some homework he had due on Monday. He sighed, turning his head on his pillow to see the notebook sitting on top of his laptop waiting for him to find the motivation to do his work-- it never came easily.

 

Woojin heard a very soft and faint knock on his door. He got up, holding his breath and hoping to whatever god was supposed to be above him that Daniel hadn’t come back. He unlocked his door and threw it open, expecting to see Daehwi dressed to the nines to drag him out of his dorm, or maybe one of the guys from his floor coming to complain about noise or their roommate since Woojin was the RA after all. His eyes went wide as he took in the form that was in front of him. The black hair laying flat on their head and their lips curled into what seemed like a smile but was so obviously not. He was taken by utmost surprise to say the least.

 

“Woojin.” the sweet voice saying his name was laced with familiarity and it invited him in, making him nearly swoon right in the doorway. “You can’t run from me now, can you, Woojin?” it was almost Like Jihoon was challenging him. He raised an eyebrow, almost as if to say I caught you, bitch. And the expression on his lips was definitely twisted into a cheeky smile. Woojin sighed, all the colour drained from his face and made his skin feel like there were needles poking him all around. “Aren’t you going to let me in? Or are you just going to pretend I don’t exist again.”

 

“Jihoon, I--”

 

“Save it. We’re having that talk now, Woojin.”

Chapter Text

Friday

 

From what had happened six days earlier to now, Woojin never thought he’d have to be in this situation. Jihoon had pushed his way inside and sat at Woojin’s desk chair, swivelling it around to face him and Woojin was sitting cross-legged on his bed. A silence had fallen over the two and they had been sitting there for a good fifteen minutes before anyone got the balls to actually say anything. Woojin had taken the time to stare at Jihoon, indulging in what he felt like would be the last time he would see him up close considering they were having the talk. The “ I have a girlfriend and I’m painfully straight ” talk. Woojin was dreading it ever since he fucked up and told Jihoon the truth.

 

Woojin’s eyes wandered over Jihoon’s features, the way his eyes were downcast as he looked at the floor, obviously trying to gather his thoughts. His hands were folded neatly in front of him. His fingers were slender and fit together so perfectly. Woojin thought back to all the times that he had grabbed his hand before whenever they were in big crowds together, making sure they didn’t lose one another. Woojin wanted to smack himself, knowing that Jihoon had probably connected the dots with how touchy and affectionate Woojin had always been. It probably all makes sense to him now. Woojin’s eyes made their way to Jihoon’s face as he took him all in. His hair was black and parted to the side. His fringe was piecey and fell over one side of his forehead. Woojin still wanted to just kiss his forehead and hold him… if fucking only.

 

“I didn’t expect you to actually let me in.” Jihoon let out a forced laugh that hit Woojin’s ears awkwardly.

 

“Well, you really didn’t give me a choice.”

 

“I’m glad you’re okay.”

 

“Yeah, thanks. I just slept at the baseball field, it wasn’t that big of a deal.” Woojin suddenly had the urge to smoke again as his night at the baseball field crept back into his mind.

 

“The baseball field? How did you even sleep there, there’s nothing but benches.”

 

“I-- I know that. I slept on a bench.” 

 

“That must’ve been really uncomfortable.” Jihoon’s eyes flicked up and met Woo jin's. He could only look away. 

 

“Can we not do this, Jihoon?”

 

“What do you mean?”

 

“Pretending like nothing’s changed… trying to force this conversation about nothing because the tension is so fucking thick here.”

 

“Nothing’s changed, you’re the one who’s making everything different, Woojin.”

 

“You don’t think this is weird? Any of this?” The fact that I told you that I have feelings for you… Woojin couldn’t get that last part to exit his parted lips.

 

“You know, I never thought about you being gay. I don’t have a problem with it, you know Daniel is gay?”

 

The words hit Woojin’s ears awkwardly, almost as if Jihoon was trying to hurt him. “I had a sneaking suspicion. And I never thought about me being gay either, I just am, Jihoon. I’m sorry.” Woojin rubbed the back of his neck with his hand, the hair standing on end as the tension grew even thicker.

 

“I just can’t believe it, I’ve been thinking about it ever since it happened. I talked to Daniel about it.”

 

“Jihoon, you said you didn’t tell anyone.” Woojin honestly didn’t care that he had told Daniel, he already knew Woojin was gay and he wouldn’t be surprised if he had overheard the whole ordeal that night. 

 

“Daniel knew anyways, he heard everything.” That makes it grimy. “But still, I just can’t believe you’re--”

 

“Well I am.” Woojin snapped a bit, standing. This was the reason he had never really came out to anyone. He didn’t want anyone to make a big deal out of it because it wasn’t a big deal. What’s so hard to believe about it?

 

“I never thought about me being gay either, it really never crossed my mind.” Jihoon stood to meet Woojin in the middle of the floor, looking up into his eyes. They were glistening and from here, Woojin could see the dark circles that plagued Jihoon and for just a moment, Woojin understood perfectly what he meant.

 

“What are you talking about…” he prodded. Woojin backed up, trying to turn away from him, trying to escape his gaze because this couldn’t be real, this couldn’t really be happening. Woojin had half a mind to pinch himself to wake up from this dream as he felt Jihoon’s hands cup his face, so gentle and warm against his skin. Their touch brought him right back to where he was. He couldn’t bury his feelings like he had been doing for the past week. Woojin would burst if he had to pretend like distancing himself from Jihoon wasn’t the hardest thing he had ever done.

 

Woojin gasped as Jihoon raised himself on his toes, using Woojin’s shoulders for support. He felt Jihoon’s lips press against his, still wildly unexpected. They were soft and warm and he nearly pulled back out of shock... but the opportunity to kiss the person you love under such circumstances really only comes once in a lifetime. So Woojin embraced it. His hands settled on Jihoon’s hips and he released Woojin’s cheeks, wrapping his arms around the taller boy’s neck and completely losing himself in it. Woojin was in heaven and he swears that he had fallen asleep on his bed and that all of this really was a dream that he was about to be pulled from when Daehwi found his way to Woojin’s dorm, wanting to go get food or to take Woojin to his mom’s house to make him something homemade. But the warmth of Jihoon’s body pressed against his own brought him to the realisation that this was happening; Jihoon was kissing him and he never wanted to let him go. 

 

Jihoon was the first to pull back and Woojin rested his forehead against the younger’s, the two making the most intimate eye contact that Woojin had ever experienced. He could feel Jihoon’s breath ghosting over his lips as he breathed, his eyes shifting from left to right. Jihoon moved his arms under Woojin’s and rested his head in the crook of his neck. Woojin felt his body shake and the sounds of his sobs against his skin as he hugged him close, trying to be comforting while Jihoon cried.

 

“I’m sorry.” Jihoon said, pulling his face from Woojin’s neck. Woojin used his thumbs to swipe the tears away that were falling down Jihoon’s cheeks.

 

“Why are you crying?” Jihoon’s eyes dropped to Woojin’s chest and he sniffled. “Hm? What’s wrong?”

 

Jihoon shook his head and used his sleeve to wipe his face, taking a deep breath in. The sight of Jihoon’s red eyes with his tear stained cheeks broke Woojin’s heart.

 

“I’m sorry…” he said again, not able to answer Woojin’s question.

 

It hit Woojin that it was something he couldn’t fix. Minji. Woojin had to do what was right, he always had to be the good guy and sacrifice himself for others. He had to.

 

“Listen Jihoon, why don’t you go home and think about this? This is… big.”

 

“I’ve been thinking about it all week. That’s why I wanted to talk to you so bad. Now that I’ve realised, I don’t want to go home, I just want to see you.”

 

Woojin’s heart clenched at Jihoon’s words. But responsibility called him, he had to do the right thing, even if he really didn’t want to. “Why don’t you go home and get some sleep, we can talk about this in the morning, me and you.”

 

“Please, Woojin. Let me stay, I don’t want to leave. Just let me stay the night like we used to.”

 

”Jihoon, don’t say it like that. You’re putting me in a hard place here and I’m about to just say fuck it.” Woojin pushed Jihoon away from him, separating their bodies and breaking the contact. “Think about this. Think about everything that will come with this.”

 

“Yeah, okay. You’re right.” Jihoon sniffled and smiled, his red eyes piercing into Woojin’s soul when the looked up at him pitifully. The smile was as fake as Woojin was acting right now and they both knew it.

 

“Text me when you get home and let me know you’re safe.” Woojin walked him out to the building entrance. Jihoon turned back to Woojin before stepping out and embraced him once more. Woojin wanted to kiss his forehead and tell him that everything was going to be okay… But he felt it would be stepping over a boundary; this was all so unexpected and he hoped that Jihoon didn’t change his mind when he woke up in the morning.

 

“Don’t forget to text me.”

 

***

 

내 사랑 후니 10:14 p.m

 

I’ve thought about it, Woojin. I’m ready for our talk.

 

I hope you know that when you say morning, I’m taking it as 12:01. 

 

You can’t get rid of me that easy, fatass.

 

Woojin chuckled, flipping off his lightswitch and falling into his bed. His homework still lying on his desk, long forgotten.

 

Woojin 10:15 p.m

 

Are you home?

 

내 사랑 후니 10:15 p.m

 

:(

 

I’m not home yet or anything. I just really don’t want to go home.

 

I know this was all really sudden but… I really have been thinking about this since you said it last sat. I’ve never questioned our friendship or how I felt.

 

내 사랑 후니 10:19 p.m

 

Idk I think I’ve been repressing it. Idek how I could say it with my own lips but I like you, Woojin. I like you a lot and I’m askamed I never realised it until now. But its always been there since that night you took care of me like 3 mf year ago… I don’t think I realised what it was and of course you know where I come from. My family never made something like this an option… but I think that’s why we’ve always gotten along and why we’ve always been drawn to each other. I really like you Woojin. I don’t wanna go home. i just wanna see you.

 

내 사랑 후니 10:20 p.m

 

*** ashamed lololol

 

Woojin stared at his phone screen as it illuminated his face in the darkness, he couldn’t believe what he was reading. Woojin was always hasty with the decisions he made, and now was no exception.

 

Woojin 10:21 p.m

 

Fuck, Jihoon.

 

Do you know what you do to me? Do you even realise how hard you’re making it for me to do the right thing…

 

Do you want to come back?



내 사랑 후니 10:22 p.m

 

I was hoping you’d see things my way. 




Saturday

 

Woojin wasn’t exactly sure why he was doing what he was doing, but he was somehow barrelling down the highway in Jihoon’s car headed toward Incheon. 

 

When Jihoon had arrived back at Woojin’s place, he was still disgruntled. 

 

“I want to leave campus, I just feel weird here right now.” Woojin knew what he meant. He knew that Jihoon felt weary about bumping into Minji.

 

“Where do you want to go?” Woojin took a drink from his water bottle before setting it back down on the floor. 

 

“I wish I could go to the beach but it's so cold out.”

 

“We’re just sixteen miles from Incheon.”

 

“Do you want to go to Eurwangni? I’ll let you drive my car there. Please, I just want to get away from here.”

 

Woojin blinked a couple times, weighing his options. Spend a few hours at a beach with Jihoon or try to coax him into staying here… the choice was obvious, Woojin could never say no. Jihoon quickly left Woojin’s room to go get some things for their small excursion and Woojin decided to call Daehwi. He scrolled down to his contact and clicked the little phone icon, bringing it to his ear to hear it ring out. When Daehwi answered, Woojin could hear loud music thumping from the other side and Daehwi yelling out a “WAIT!” Suddenly the music was muffled and he could hear Daehwi’s choppy breathing on the other end of the line. 

 

“Woojin, what’s up?”

 

“Hey, am I interrupting?”

 

“No, not at all. I’m just at a party but it's starting to die down a little. You need something?”

 

“I just wanted to let you know that I’m going on a small trip this weekend and I’m not sure when I’ll be back… I thought it might just be for a few hours but he went to go pack some things so it might be the whole weekend.” The other end of the line was silent besides Daehwi’s breathing.

 

“He? Who is it?” Daehwi was always protective of Woojin. Always there to take care of him when he didn’t even think he needed it. 

 

“Oh, I’ve known him for a few years now. It’s Jihoon.” Woojin chuckled as Daehwi let out a choked breath on the other end. 

 

“Jihoon? As in Jihoon-Jihoon? What am I missing?”

 

“Yes, it's The Jihoon and its complicated, but I’ll tell you everything when I get back— whenever I get back. I just wanted to let you know because I don’t want to take my phone and I didn’t want you to worry your pretty little head.” the smile on Woojin’s face was obvious on his voice. “Also don’t tell anyone. Please, even if they ask you where we are. None of this was supposed to happen.”

 

“You’ll have a lot of explaining to do when you get back. You have to tell me what happens but… have fun Woojin.”

 

They said their goodbyes and hung up as Woojin started to pack his own bag, making sure he grabbed his camera and opting to pack too much rather than too little. When Jihoon returned back to Woojin’s dorm, his own neatly packed bag in hand, they both took their phones, powered them off, and left them sitting in the middle of Woojin’s bed.

 

And so there they were: driving down an empty highway, Jihoon in the passenger seat with his cheek pressed against the window, and Woojin blinking harshly trying to stay awake as they made their way to the beach. This all really did happen so fast but Woojin felt… happy? He knew in his head that this would all be temporary and that this was probably a final hurrah before things went back to how they had been this past week. But Woojin was indulgent; he wanted to be here and get affection from Jihoon, even if it was just temporary.

 

He let his fingers ghost over Jihoon’s cheek and the boy leaned into his touch, groaning slightly as he woke up. 

 

“Are we close?” Jihoon said, rubbing his eyes.

 

“We’re getting there… can already smell the ocean.”

 

***

 

When they had come across a seedy motel that backed up to the beach, Woojin was more than happy, ecstatic even. It meant he wouldn’t completely drain his funds that he had to last him the rest of the year whilst he was in school. He parked Jihoon’s car in front of the reception office and the pair staggered out of the car, their legs feeling stiff although the trip to the beach hadn’t been too long of a haul. The fact that they were both sleepy was adding to their inability to put one foot in front of the other and walk as coherently as they usually would. Woojin held the door for Jihoon as they walked into the flood of fluorescent light and approached the counter. 

 

“We want to stay here for a few nights.” Woojin said. The older man behind the counter scoffed, looking between the two.

 

“Two beds, right?”

 

“A single, please.” Jihoon piped in, a gentle smile on his lips. The man scoffed and raised his eyebrows as he charged them for the room, sliding a key across the counter. Woojin put his credit card down and prepaid for the room, reserving it through Sunday night before they turned, exciting the office and returning back to Jihoon’s car to grab their bags.

 

The motel room itself was bigger than it looked from the outside and actually consisted of three rooms: a main bedroom with a queen-sized bed, a television, and a small table garnished with two chairs, a small kitchenette area complete with a microwave and mini fridge, and on the back of the motel “room,” a small area that had a bed that folded out from the wall-- smaller than the queen bed in the other room but still big enough to hold two people if they slept close to each other. The room also had a patio door with a clear view of the ocean. 

 

They dropped their bags as soon as they crossed the threshold into the room. Woojin rubbed his eyes as Jihoon clicked on a lamp, filling the room with yellow light that leaked into the kitchenette and gave the room a hazy glow. Woojin stretched upwards, his hands laced together above his head as he walked through the kitchenette, pushing open the door to the additional room.

 

“Hey Jihoon, come here!” Woojin stepped inside, lowering the murphy bed from it's stowaway position on the wall.

 

“Oh cool,” he walked over to the patio door and clicked over the lock, sliding it open just enough so that the sound of the waves crashing against each other spilled into the room, the moonlight cascading in through the glass the only thing illuminating the room. “This is perfect…”

 

“So you want to take this room?” Woojin said, still unintentionally trying to distance himself from Jihoon so he wouldn’t get hurt as bad when the little excursion was over.

 

“Yes.”

 

The silence was back as Jihoon sat on the bed, looking outward toward the ocean and Woojin stood there staring at the floor.

 

“I’m gonna… I’m gonna go change since it's late. I think its nearly my bedtime.” Woojin said, pulling himself from the room. Jihoon nodded and stood from the bed, shedding himself of everything but his long sleeved shirt and his boxer briefs. Woojin slipped into the bathroom, bringing his bag along with him and pulling out what he needed to do his skincare routine-- he’d be damned if he didn’t do this every night. 

 

Once he was done, he walked into the main bedroom again, crawling under the covers and putting an arm behind his head. He stared up at the ceiling in the darkness. The room was quiet and completely devoid of any light whatsoever. Woojin let out a small giggle, not able to stop the smile that appeared on his face. Woojin really did feel happy; it felt like things were going right for once since his crush had started. It didn’t take long for him to fall asleep, the sound of his own breathing the only thing audible as it lulled him into his slumber.

 

But it didn’t last long.

 

Woojin stirred awake and he was so out of it that he felt inebriated. Something was touching him and pulling him closer to the left side of the bed.

 

“Hm?” was the only thing that Woojin managed to get out.

 

“It’s just me. I couldn’t sleep. Its okay, go back to sleep, Woojin.”

 

He recognised Jihoon’s voice and let out a small “ah” sound. He felt pressure on his chest-- which turned out to be Jihoon’s head resting against him. Woojin absentmindedly wrapped his arms around the boy, rubbing his back and resting his chin against the top of his head. Jihoon’s arms were lazily draped over Woojin’s hip and he hazily faded back to sleep.



The sunlight peeking through the curtains and straight into Woojin’s eyes ushered in the morning time. He stretched feeling resistance as he did so, realising that Jihoon was still attached to him from last nights after hours cuddling sesh. Woojin felt as if he had a sleeping puppy on his chest and suddenly was pressured not to move so that he wouldn’t wake Jihoon. He looked so peaceful and so beautiful. His tan skin was smooth and gave a stark contrast to the white long-sleeved shirt he was wearing. Woojin kissed the top of his head, getting it out of his system before he woke up and began to run his fingers back and forth on Jihoon’s upper arm. Jihoon shifted a bit in his sleep, his face ending up in Woojin’s neck. His breath was hot against Woojin’s skin and his nose probing the side of his throat was more comfortable than he’d like to admit.

 

Jihoon’s hand caressed Woojin’s chest, making its way up to rest on the other side of his neck. His lips pressed gently against Woojin’s neck and he was nearly startled at the gesture but he refused to let Jihoon know that. He looked down to see Jihoon’s soft smile and his equally soft eyes looking back up at him.

 

“Good morning.” Oh, God. Woojin never thought he could hear something so magical. Of course, Jihoon had told Woojin good morning loads of times, but this time as he had just pulled back from kissing Woojin’s neck after a night of conspicuous cuddling, things were certainly different.  And, Jesus, he hoped things never went back to how they were if it meant that it would be like this all the time.

 

“Morning, sunshine.”

 

Jihoon moved from his position and laid partially over Woojin, his elbows supporting him on either side of Woojin’s body.

 

“I was thinking last night… about us. I had an idea? And I’m not sure how idiotic is it but I feel like its worth a shot.” Jihoon played with the collar of Woojin’s shirt, giving him a cold chill from where his fingers were making his chest tingle.

 

“What is it?”

 

“We can pretend like we’re actually together. No one here knows us and it’ll be like a trial run since you think I really need to think about this. It’ll be like a couples vacation.” I don’t want you to think about it, I just want you.

 

Woojin nodded, resting his head back on his pillow and closing his eyes. “It’s not a bad idea, I’m down for it. You’ll see how good of a boyfriend I am.”

 

“Treat me like the queen I am, Woojin.” Jihoon rested his head back against Woojin’s chest and they shared a small laugh over his “queen” comment. 

 

“When are we starting?” Woojin asked, his hand going to Jihoon’s hair and playing with his silky locks, letting them slip through his fingers.

 

“Now. Let’s start now.”

 

“Perfect, what’d you wanna do today, baby ?” Woojin let the pet name slip, taking advantage of the situation as much as he could.

 

“Take me on a date. I have high expectations for you, don’t disappoint me.”

 

“You’ll be impressed, brat, I won’t disappoint.” Woojin playfully slapped Jihoon’s arm. “If we’re going to do this we’re gonna do it right. Get dressed, I’m picking you up in thirty minutes.”

 

Woojin got up and retrieved his bag from the doorway, disappearing into the bathroom and getting dressed for the day. Since he was on a time crunch, he didn’t have enough time to pack outfits that he would normally wear; he kept things simple. Simple meaning he packed two pairs of jeans and four shirts and he was a little out of his element. Woojin didn’t usually do basic and it was a very commonly known fact. He always had on something that spiced his outfit at least in the slightest like his fingerless gloves or a brightly coloured headband. So when he stepped out of the bathroom wearing a black crewneck and black jeans, Jihoon was taken aback. It was odd seeing him so… regular? But Jihoon did have to admit that he looked fucking great. Woojin strolled out of the front door after tossing his bag onto the bed.

 

“Be ready, I’ll be back to pick you up soon.” 

 

***

 

Woojin, the sly bastard, pulled up to the door to his and Jihoon’s room with Jihoon’s car, ready to pick him up for their date. Woojin had an idea formulated in his head as soon as the words “ Take me on a date ” left his mouth. In the thirty minutes that he had been gone, Woojin managed to get his hands on a small bouquet of white flowers. Jihoon’s eyes lit up when he slid into the passenger seat of the car, a pink tint shading his cheeks.

 

“You got me flowers?” His smile was fixed on his face, Woojin had already exceeded Jihoon’s expectations. How bare minimum. 

 

“Of course I did. Since I have something pretty to look at all day, I wanted you to have something pretty too.” Woojin put the car in gear and began driving, pulling out onto the busy road.

 

“I have you to look at, you know. You’re pretty too.” Jihoon said in a small voice. And Woojin couldn’t help himself when his hand reached for Jihoon’s, their fingers laced together and Jihoon holding onto Woojin’s arm with his other hand.

 

Their car ride didn’t last long. They pulled into the parking lot of a grocery store and they broke their contact, parting and coming back together when Jihoon walked around the side of the car to meet Woojin.

 

“Grocery store? This is our date?”

 

“It’s part of it. A minor part, but still so important.” Woojin said, turning to walk and expecting Jihoon to follow him. He walked quickly to catch up with Woojin and replaced his hand into Woojin’s, leaning his head on his shoulder as they walked. Woojin picked up a basket when they stepped inside the building, letting it rest on his forearm as he strolled through the store.

 

Woojin took care of picking up things, asking Jihoon what he preferred between different drinks-- going with fruit infused green tea-- and what kind of meat he liked best and before long, Woojin’s basket had gotten full of miscellaneous groceries. They brought it to the counter, letting the disinterested woman at the till ring up their purchase. Woojin paid for it with his credit card and they were back in the car in a flash. 

 

“Are you ready to go on the actual date?”

 

“There’s more? And here I thought grocery shopping was going to be the highlight of my day.” Jihoon beamed at Woojin from the passenger seat.

 

“Looks like I’m really exceeding all of your expectations today.”

 

The pair pulled back up to the motel and walked in, Jihoon with an unassuming expression on his face. Woojin pulled a blanket off of one of the beds as he walked through the motel room and headed straight for the sliding door, opening it and walking straight through the room with the grocery bags without batting an eye and Jihoon followed suit. 

 

Woojin set the bags down in the sand when he reached about halfway down the beach in a raised spot in which the tide came close as it pushed and pulled at the shore, but would never actually reach them. He sat down as Jihoon approached him, taking up half of the blanket and patting the open space next to him. Jihoon sat whilst Woojin turned his attention to preparing the food-- which was an easy setup since he picked things that were handheld and required minimal setup. Their picnic spread was huge to be honest, Woojin had really outdone himself and the smile on Jihoon’s face made him feel warm inside.

 

The sound of the waves crashing against the shore was comforting, lulling the boys into a sense of calmness that washed over their beings. Jihoon was concentrating on a big chocolate cookie as he leaned back with this legs sprawled out in front of him, resting on the heels of his hands as he looked out at the water. Woojin had stopped eating long ago, the butterflies with their sharp wings thrashing against his insides taking up most of the room inside of his stomach. He shakily took a drink of his green tea as the silence passed.

 

“This is a really beautiful place, I’m surprised the motel doesn’t cost more, you know?” Jihoon broke the silence, almost mumbling with a mouthful of sweets.

 

“I know… beach access like this and all the rooms have a view. We really lucked out, especially since I’m pretty sure this place is reasonably dead. I haven’t even seen anyone else around here.”

 

“It is like negative 80 degrees outside, Woojin.” Jihoon said, putting emphasis on the word “is” as his head turned, locking eyes with Woojin.

 

“I’ll bring you back when it's summer time, how about that?”

 

“Sounds perfect. I want to go swimming, plus I’d get to see you in a swimsuit.” 

 

Woojin playfully smacked at Jihoon’s arm. Jihoon grabbed his bicep and fell onto the blanket, groaning and sniffling, pretending to cry and gasping for air as Woojin rolled his eyes. Jihoon wrapped his fingers around Woojin’s wrist, tugging gently.

 

“LOOK WHAT YOU’VE DONE TO ME!”

 

“YOU’RE SO OVERDRAMATIC.” Jihoon sat up and crossed his arms, pouting at Woojin. “Oh come on, don’t be a brat, Jihoonnie.”

 

“Oh, please, you haven’t seen brat.”

 

“You’re insufferable, you know that?” Woojin took another swig of his green tea, barely getting the spout out from between his lips before Jihoon snatched it away from him. Jihoon situated himself and leaned back so that he would be lying in Woojin’s lap. He closed his eyes and took a drink of the cold green tea, holding it up so that Woojin could take it back from him.

 

“Must be why you like me so much, Park Woojin.”

 

Woojin threaded his hand through Jihoon’s hair and he let out a content sigh. His hair was so fucking soft and looking down at him was pure bliss, his expression was so elegant and happy. He looked so beautiful and he couldn’t stop himself from caressing the boys face. His skin was smooth as Woojin let his fingers graze over his cheeks. 

 

“You’re so fucking pretty, Jihoon.” he said, watching Jihoon’s eyes flutter open. He placed his hand on Woojin’s, leaning into his touch. 

 

“You know you can kiss me. I know that look, you’ve been looking at me like that for three years.”

 

“Ruins the suspense if you know it's coming. I’ll surprise you.”

 

There was a comfortable moment before Jihoon spoke again that was filled with water. 

 

“I just want to say, thank you for dropping everything and bringing me out here. It really means a lot to me.”

 

“Any time.”

 

Jihoon sat up and scooted closer to Woojin, resting his head on his shoulder and leaning back into him. “I’m serious, I don’t think anyone else would’ve done something like this for me.”

 

“I’d do anything for you, Jihoon.” Woojin pressed his cheek against the top of his head and took a deep breath, staring down at the design on the blanket beneath them and tracing it with his eyes. 

 

“I really like you so much, Woojin. I do.”

 

“But?”

 

“But nothing. I just like you.”

 

“I like you too, Jihoon.”

 

Jihoon giggled. “I can’t believe you unloaded that on me so suddenly.”

 

“To be fair I had a plan. You weren’t even supposed to remember it. But my dumbass couldn’t wait long enough.”

 

“You wanted to tell me when I was drunk? That’s kind of scummy but creative. I’m glad that I wasn’t.” Jihoon rested his hand on Woojin’s thigh. “What happened that night?”

 

Woojin sighed, replaying the events in his head. “Well, I obviously darted after I fucked up and told you. So I went to that one convenience store like a block or two down the street and I bought some things to keep me company. I really didn’t know where to go from there… my legs just took me to the baseball field. Oh and your text was wrong, by the way. You said I was drunk but I wasn’t, I’m not a Lightweight. What do you take me for?”

 

“What did you buy?”

 

“Huh? Oh, right.” Woojin paused trying his best to stall. Jihoon knew about his habit from before, in fact Jihoon is what inspired him to stop and even helped him by showing up at his door with nicotine patches and hard candy to keep his mouth busy so he wouldn’t want to smoke. “I, uh— I bought cigarettes.”

 

“You smoked?” Woojin could hear the surprise in his voice, his tone rising in his throat.

 

“Yeah… it was a one time thing, I’m done and I’m never smoking again.”

 

“You better fucking not, I’ll kill you.” Jihoon huffed.

 

“What about you? How did your week go since you said you were thinking about it ever since I told you.”

 

“I went looking for you on the night of the party and I was so frustrated that you unloaded something like that on me and then just disappeared in all senses of the word. You went radio silent, no one could reach you on your phone, no one could find you, you just vanished and that worried me. I know how you are, I’ve known you for three years and you have a tendency to be a little… impulsive.” Jihoon’s fingers squeezed Woojin’s thigh.

 

“I’m sorry. I didn’t mean to do that to you. Like I said you weren’t supposed to even be coherent, I got ahead of myself and fucked it up.”

 

“Is it really so fucked up now?”

 

“Well, we did run away to Incheon without telling anyone but Daehwi that we were leaving or where we were going. That seems just gently fucked up to me, Jihoon.”

 

“Regardless, I think it's going okay. But anyways, Woojin, the week was hell. I didn’t actually start questioning my own sexuality and all that until Monday. I remember the moment it happened too because I was sitting with… with Minji in the library and she was talking with her friends and I realised how fucking disinterested I was. So I sent you a text, not really expecting a reply honestly… but I missed you. I missed your presence and the way you’d sling your arm around me and how you smiled at me so big that your eyes nearly disappeared. I realised that I wanted more than anything to be with you.” Jihoon’s hand left Woojin’s thigh, touching his own face. The way that his breathing changed, Woojin knew that Jihoon had started crying. “But you know me not being straight changes everything. You haven’t met my family or anything since we’re in always in Seoul but… I can’t like boys, you know what I mean? And the fact that I’ve been dating Minji for almost three years. It's harrowing how much time I put into our relationship when I felt nothing for her, it was like we were going through the motions, like the relationship wasn’t even real to begin with. It was just for the people around us. Kang Minji, the perfect student with her perfect grades and her pretty boyfriend on her arm. Its a fucking sham and since then I started to resent our relationship.”

 

“At least you know you’re pretty.” Jihoon let out a small sound that was a mix between a wail and a laugh. Jihoon’s world had been falling apart during the week that Woojin had practically abandoned him. 

 

“But that week… I tried to stay away from her. Dodging her calls and avoiding her at all costs because even though I resent the relationship now I still feel so bad because I think her feelings are real? Or real enough to where she’ll feel heartbroken if I end it, you know? And I never told her about what happened at the party but I can’t say the same for Daniel because he did hear it. And I sent him to go check on you once so when they see us both gone they might put two and two together. Minji especially is going to notice I’m gone because we had plans this weekend that we made a couple weeks back. But… I really just couldn’t do it. I couldn’t, I fucking couldn’t.” Jihoon’s body was wracked with sobs but he tried his best to mask it, pretending like he wasn’t crying but Woojin knew better. He threw his leg around the other side of Jihoon and  wrapped his arms around him, pulling him as close as he could and rocking him back and forth. Woojin snaked his hand up to Jihoon’s face, wiping tears away from his cheeks and kissing the top of his head as they sat there.

 

“Please don’t cry, Jihoon. Everything is going to be okay, this kind of stuff always pans out. You don’t have to worry, I’ll take care of you.” Silence. “Wanna know something funny?” Woojin’s attempt to lighten the mood, “I fell for you that night we went to the diner. You remember? Ah, you were so drunk and the diner was pretty dark honestly—or at least that’s how I remember it. But we were sat at a booth next to the window and the neon that hung on the glass was illuminating you. And I swear to god you looked like an angel. I never wanted to kiss someone so badly… you were sitting there eating fries and asking the waitress if it was possible for her to get you potato soup without the potatoes.” Woojin laughed, finding himself submerged in the memory. 

 

“I’m a dumbass when I’m drunk. Why would I even ask that? Do they even have potato soup?” Jihoon sniffled and laughed, his mind being taken elsewhere. “Hey do you remember when that kid smuggled a hamster onto our floor? Jesus I miss living in those dorms with you. Life was never dull.”

 

“He really shoved the poor thing into his pants when I came in to see if he really had a hamster. As if the giant cage wasn’t enough evidence, does he think I’m a fool? You shouldn’t have left us, baby.” 

 

“I wonder if I can move back to that dorm complex in the spring semester.”

 

“I hope you can… But Jihoon… Do you know what you’re going to do?”

 

“Let’s not talk about that. We’re here right now and we might as well be the only two people in the world. But just know that I really care for you, Woojin.” 

 

Woojin’s hand traced Jihoon’s jawline, turning his head to the side. He leaned over Jihoon’s shoulder, their faces so close that they were nearly touching. Woojin rubbed his nose against Jihoon’s, urging him closer before he went for his lips, the taste of chocolate prominent on Jihoon. This kiss was different from the one back in Woojin’s dorm room. Something spicier about it, less surprising and more familiar. Woojin found himself sucking on Jihoon’s bottom lip and releasing it as he pulled back. Their kiss was a flurry of wetness and squelching, both fighting for dominance with their mouths and Woojin ultimately winning as he rested his fingers on Jihoon’s neck, the pad of his thumb against his adam’s apple. Jihoon’s tongue found its way into Woojin’s mouth and it stroked against his own before they separated with a smack . Woojin didn’t say the words back to him, but Jihoon knew that Woojin cared for him too.

 

The two of them picked up their blanket with much hesitation after a long afternoon of grazing and just enjoying each other’s company. The beach was their little safe haven, the lack of travellers and tourists made it a sanctuary and the fact that the only person they had to come in contact with were people who worked there. It was nice to be out in the open and isolated all at once, a whole new experience for the pair. Jihoon grabbed the bags from Woojin and replaced it with his hand, holding it all the way back to their room. Jihoon had become a little clingy since their talk on the beach, and Woojin honestly didn’t mind it one bit. Jihoon plopped down on the fold out bed, crossing his legs in front of him.

 

“I have one last surprise for you. I saw a sign for something when I was driving earlier to get your flowers and I thought you would enjoy it. But we have to wait a little while.” Woojin smirked.

 

“What is it?”

 

“I just told you we have to wait. But you’ll find out soon enough.” 

 

***

 

A couple hours later, the two boys were walking down the street in the sunset. Woojin had two towels slung over his shoulder and Jihoon kept prodding him with questions, unsure of what was to come.

 

“At least tell me how much longer we have until we get there.”

 

“I told you we’re almost there, It's up here on the left.”  

 

Jihoon groaned as their feet beat eagerly against the sidewalk, closing the gap between them and the building up ahead so that Jihoon could see the sign in all of its glory.

 

“A heated swimming pool? But the sign said it closed at six.” Jihoon frowned, turning to look at Woojin.

 

“I know, that’s the point. Haven’t you snuck in anywhere before?”

 

Woojin sized up the building, looking at the back and seeing that there was a chain link fence that lined the area. Perfect. Woojin grabbed Jihoon by the hand and pulled him to the back.

 

“Okay so, do you feel more comfortable going over first so I can help you? Or do you want me to go over first?” Jihoon was hesitant. 

 

“I’ll go first… I’m not sure how I’m going to be able to do this.” He chuckled nervously. 

 

Woojin got down on one knee, leaving his other leg planted on the ground so that Jihoon could step on his thigh and scale the fence— which he did beautifully and without an issue. Woojin then pulled himself over, nearly cutting himself open on the top where the fence was cut off into sharp edges. Once the pair was over the fence, they managed their way inside— which was easy because the doorway to the outside was just concrete arches that led them into the building. 

 

The lights in the main room were shut off but a glow was resonating up from the water. Ah, there’s lights on the pool walls. Woojin thought to himself, eliminated another problem that may have arisen (which was trying to find the lights in the limited time they had there). Woojin squatted and touched the water with his fingertips.

 

“It’s definitely warm.” He flicked his hand and stood up. “Well, let’s get in. Heh.”

 

Woojin began to undress and he could feel Jihoon’s eyes on him. He could see Jihoon’s head moving along in his peripheral as he moved to strip down. Woojin pretty thick and muscular. He tucked the smile away that was on his lips and sat on the edge of the pool once he was down to his briefs. He looked up at Jihoon and outreached his hand.

 

“Are you coming?” 

 

Jihoon began to undress. Jihoon, on the other hand, had a soft body. There were no edges and everything bled into itself. Jihoon jumped straight into the water, diving and cutting the water impeccably. Warmth flooded Woojin’s cheeks when Jihoon came back up, the water flowing off of him ad he slicked his hair back. It was almost as if he was watching a model doing a shoot in slow motion, he felt like he shouldn’t be seeing this. But here Jihoon was in front of him, in all his glory.

 

“What?” 

 

Woojin slipped into the water and sat against the pool wall, gazing into Jihoon’s eyes. He had begun to feel much more comfortable around him now, he had tricked himself into thinking that they were actually dating and it made his heart sing. He ignored everything that could potentially happen, shoved it to the back of his mind to deal with later; he wouldn’t let his mind cloud the time that he had left with Jihoon. 

 

“You’re just pretty, I like staring at you. You’re the most beautiful person I’ve ever seen, sweetheart.” Woojin couldn’t help but to bite his lip when he saw Jihoon blush, he liked it when he was flustered. 

 

“You really think so?”

 

“Of course, I’ve always thought that. No one could be prettier than you.”

 

Jihoon closed the gap between them and Woojin leaned against the wall of the pool. He clung to Woojin, resting his head on his chest and peppering small kisses on his skin.

 

“You’re handsome, Woojin.”

 

“You’re only saying that because I called you pretty.” Woojin’s voice was low, a crackling whisper as if he didn’t want anyone else to hear, even though they were the only two in the room. Woojin let out a deep and gentle laugh, just enough for his chest to rumble. Jihoon trailed his mouth across Woojin’s collarbones and finally to his neck, his arms wrapped around his waist.

 

“I mean it, have you seen yourself? You’re so fucking… hot.”

 

“Yeah? Am I?” Woojin pulled his bottom lip between his teeth again, biting down and trying to regulate his breathing so that he didn’t seem like he was about to hyperventilate. His arms were around Jihoon’s shoulders, his fingers caressing the skin where they laid. Jihoon hummed in agreement, starting to let his lips get looser until he was leaving open mouthed kisses, nearly sucking on his skin. Woojin couldn’t contain the growl that rolled from his chest as Jihoon sucked the skin under his ear, his weak spot that drove him nearly to madness. 

 

“Jihoon, don’t do that.”

 

“Why not? Am I bothering you?” Woojin could feel Jihoon’s smirk against his skin. That bastard knows what he’s doing.

 

“Listen, Jihoon,” his voice had grown weaker as Jihoon went back to the same spot, using his teeth to nip at his sensitive area. “You know what you’re doing, don’t you.” Woojin said flatly.

 

Jihoon pulled back from Woojin’s neck, looking him in the eyes. His pupils were blown and Woojin swears there was a look of plea.

 

“Can we just get out of here, Woojin?”

 

“So soo--” Jihoon rubbed his hand over Woojin’s crotch, cutting him off mid sentence. “Really?” Was the only thing that Woojin could get out after a beat of silence. 

 

“Unless you want it to happen here in the pool.”

 

Woojin didn’t know how he got dressed and back out on the street so fast-- everything had honestly turned into a blur. He felt hot and the cool air against his skin out in the open had no effect on him.

 

“Ah, fuck, Jihoon. We have to go to the store if you really want to do this.”

 

“The store? For what?” Jihoon’s voice had changed, he sounded airy and almost breathless. 

 

“Ah,” Woojin chuckled. “I just need to pick some things up.”

 

Thankfully there was a drugstore not far from where they were standing. They crossed the street and stepped into the bright light. They walked down the family planning aisle and it suddenly clicked in Jihoon’s head what Woojin meant. He looked at the wall of condoms and other things that were on display and couldn’t help but chuckle. Woojin got a good look at Jihoon, who he had been only been seeing in the dark for the past hour. His hair was an absolute mess, his cheeks had gone past pink and straight to red, and he looked like he had just been mauled. Woojin looked down to the noticeable bulge in his pants. Woojin grabbed a box of condoms along with a clear bottle of lube and crossed in front of Jihoon.

 

“Baby,” he whispered in his ear, “fix yourself.” He patted Jihoon’s dick and he immediately looked down at his pants, reaching his hand down into them and adjusting himself so that his tent was a lot less obvious.

 

***

 

Woojin’s undercut was soft under Jihoon’s fingers as they kissed, finally finding themselves back in their motel room. Woojin loomed over him as Jihoon ran his hands through Woojin’s hair, holding his head and barely even knowing what to do with himself. Woojin on the other hand, was doing everything he could to get him riled up. Woojin kissed down his jaw, letting him catch his breath only to have it hitch in his throat when Woojin sucked hickies onto his neck. His fingers found their way to the hem of Woojin’s shirt, pulling it until he could lift it over his head. Woojin’s hands explored Jihoon’s body over his clothes, really trying to tease him. He slid his hands under Jihoon’s shirt, running his hands up his sides and making Jihoon let out what nearly sounded like a squeak. 

 

Jihoon pulled off his own shirt, throwing it to the side of the bed and undoing his pants. Woojin pulled them down his thighs, getting up off the bed to jerk them the rest of the way off and letting them settle on the floor. Woojin shed himself of his own pants, touching himself through his underwear and letting out a soft groan as he looked at Jihoon laying there waiting for him. 

 

“Jihoon, are you sure you want to do this?”

 

“Yes. I want it more than anything.”

 

“Say it then. Tell me what you want, baby.”

 

Woojin’s eyes were dark and he looked at Jihoon like he was prey. Jihoon fucking loved it, he loved it more than anything he had ever experienced in his life. But he also wanted to see Woojin squirm.

 

“I want you to fuck me, Woojin.”

 

The air was drained from Woojin’s lungs because holy fuck he wasn’t expecting an answer like that. But he still knew it was all bluff because Jihoon, the “painfully straight” boy had never been fucked before. He had no idea what was in store for him. 

 

“Here, get on top of me first.” Woojin said, laying on his back. Jihoon straddled his thighs and Woojin settled his hands on Jihoon’s. When he leaned down to kiss Woojin, he let his hands dip down into Jihoon’s boxer briefs, squeezing his ass cheeks; they fit so perfectly into Woojin’s hands. 

 

Woojin was kissing Jihoon hungrily, like he couldn’t get enough of him. He rolled his hips up into Jihoon and the sudden contact caused him to whimper into Woojin’s mouth. One of his hands came around, rubbing Jihoon through the front of his underwear and being restricted by the layer of fabric between their skin. 

 

“Take it off.” Woojin said, patting his thigh, cutting off their kiss and waiting for Jihoon to rid himself of his last shred of clothing. He was naked on top of Woojin in what felt like an instant, always the eager one. 

 

Woojin reached onto the bedside table, grabbing the new bottle of lube and cracking it open.”I know you haven’t done this before, so just trust me. I’ll take care of you, baby. If you want to stop just tell me and I won’t ask any questions or make you go any further than you want to. Are you sure you want to do this, Jihoon?” Woojin wanted to be as thorough as possible with him, he didn’t want to coerce him into anything that he didn’t want to do. He wanted to make sure that Jihoon was absolutely sure-- which is why he had already asked him if he was sure three times and even asked him to say what he wanted, just so they were clear.

 

“Woojin, I want you. I want this, please don’t make me wait. It hurts.”

 

That was enough for Woojin. He coated his fingers with as much lube as he could, making sure that they were slick enough before he rested his middle finger at Jihoon’s entrance. He prodded into him, Jihoon’s body offering resistance at the new feeling. He hissed at the sensation as Woojin slowly moved his finger in and out of him. Woojin waited until he was adjusted before he went deeper into him, he just wanted to find his prostate to make him feel good. The sounds that Jihoon was making sounded a bit uncomfortable as he got used to the sensation of Woojin pushing deeper into him. But Woojin could tell when his huffs and groans turned into soft moans that he was headed toward the right direction-- and even more so when Jihoon threw his head back,  his moans ripping through his throat and getting higher in pitch.

 

“Feel good, sweetheart?”

 

Jihoon could only get out another moan as Woojin was relentless with his fingers. Jihoon’s dick was leaking precum and Woojin could tell by the way that his chest heaved that he was going to cum untouched just from being fingered-- and Woojin couldn’t have that.

 

“Alright, baby. I think you’re ready.” He said, pulling himself from Jihoon, a pained whimper choking out at the loss of sensation. Jihoon got off of Woojin as he stood at the end of the bed. “Okay so I think we should, uh… let me take you from the back. It’ll be easier on you.”

 

“So, I just… hands and knees?” Jihoon said, falling forward and catching himself with his hands.

 

“Uh-huh. I’ll take care of the rest. Just let me know if its too much or anything…”

 

Woojin walked around the bed, grabbing the box of condoms and opening them. He grabbed one out and took the bottle of lube with him as well. He slid himself out of his underwear and gave himself a few encouraging strokes before he ripped open the condom and rolled it over the head of his cock. He opened the lube again, squeezing some directly onto Jihoon’s ass, making him jump at how unexpectedly cold the liquid was. He then squirted some directly onto his dick, spreading it around with his hands to ensure that he was thoroughly coated-- the last thing he wanted was to hurt Jihoon.

 

He placed his hand on Jihoon’s back, running it down the length of his spine. When it got to the small of his back, he pushed down, causing Jihoon to arch his back and stick his ass out. Woojin did this to open him up, making sure that he did everything he could to make this good for him. He placed the head of his dick at his hole, his hands gripping his hips. 

 

“Ready?”

 

“Ready.”

 

Woojin eased into Jihoon, listening to the sounds he made as he slipped in until his pelvis was flush against Jihoon’s ass. He waited, letting Jihoon adjust to the size of the cock that was inside of him.

 

“Are you okay, baby?” Woojin said, one of his hands rubbing Jihoon’s back encouragingly. 

 

“I’m okay. Keep going.”

 

Woojin felt Jihoon’s ass tense around his cock as he started to pull out. Woojin let out a choked moan, biting back his sounds. He thrusted slowly in and out of Jihoon, holding tightly onto his hips. Before long, Jihoon was pushing back on Woojin and trying to feel more. He was chasing the feeling that Woojin’s fingers had given him. Woojin took his queue and stopped fucking around, letting one of his hands drop to his side and the other finding purchase in the small of Jihoon’s back. He snapped his hips into Jihoon, jolting him forward. Jihoon let out a moan and his arms gave out, splaying him against the bed as Woojin began to pound into him. With every jerk of Woojin’s hips, Jihoon let out desperate high pitched moans. Jihoon saw stars as Woojin’s dick stroked against his prostate. He couldn’t help it when his eyes screwed shut and he clenched his entire body as he came on the bed sheets. Woojin stopped, still sheathed inside of Jihoon.

 

“Did you… did you just cum?” Woojin was out of breath and to be honest he was surprised that he made Jihoon cum untouched. Jihoon was panting below him, small whines exiting his mouth with every exhale. 

 

“Y-yeah. I’m sorry.”

 

Woojin chuckled, pulling himself from Jihoon and pulling the condom off of his dick.

 

“It’s okay, sweetheart. I just need to get myself off.” 

 

Woojin began pumping himself with his hand, thrusting himself in and out of his curled fingers and chasing his own end. Jihoon had changed positions, laying on his back with his hands behind his head as his dick softened and keeping his eyes glued to Woojin’s hand. Admittedly, Jihoon’s mouth went dry as he heard the sounds that were coming not only from his mouth but also the slick sounds that came from the friction of skin on skin contact. 

 

Jihoon sat up, pulling himself to the end of the bed and replacing Woojin’s hand with his own. Woojin hissed as his hand dropped and Jihoon jerked him to heaven. Woojin grabbed his wrist, urging him to stop.

 

“I’m close, I’m close.” he said, trying to get him to stop so that he could finish on his own and clean up the mess that ensued. However, Jihoon had other plans. 

 

He didn’t let up as he stroked Woojin, pushing him to the point of no return. His breath caught in his throat as he threw his head back, his eyes screwed shut and he nearly stopped breathing. Jihoon had opened his mouth, laying Woojin’s head on his tongue and letting him cum inside. Jihoon stroked him through his orgasm until he grunted and grabbed his wrist again, this time Jihoon listened— he didn’t want to torture him with overstimulation. 

 

The boys decided to sleep on the fold out bed since they had ruined the sheets on the queen sized mattress. Housekeeping would definitely know what they had done that night and have to deal with the mess accordingly… Woojin felt sorry. The fold out bed was smaller than the queen, of course, but that was no problem for Woojin and Jihoon. They were swimming in the sheets, finding a nice place and opening the door just slightly before settling in so that they could hear the ocean and let it lull them to sleep— not like they needed any help, the were both understanbly sleepy. Jihoon laid on top of Woojin, his head settling on his chest and Woojin had his arms around him. The boys were still naked and the intimacy was different than when they’d had sex. This felt warmer, closer, they both felt at home.

 

“You were fucking amazing.” Jihoon said,  resting his chin against Woojin’s chest so he could look him in the eyes.  Woojin played with his hair and offered a soft smile, his eyes heavy and hooded.

 

“You were fucking amazing too.”

 

“You don’t have to say that, I…” Jihoon shoved his face into Woojin’s chest. “I cmmf ealrlky.”

 

I came early. 

 

Woojin didn’t want to laugh at Jihoon for thinking that it was a big deal-- Woojin expected him not to last long since he hadn’t been fucked like that before and he definitely had never had his prostate stimulated, so of course he was going to cum fast. But untouched? That’s what had Woojin shook. He’d never been able to do that to anyone even when he fucked guy after guy during his “slut” phase. Jihoon was special.

 

“Baby don’t be like that. You were fine, I expected it honestly. You can’t expect to last two hours your first time receiving.” which was true. They always cum fast.

 

“I’m just embarrassed. I feel bad because I wanted to make you feel good too.”

 

“You just swallowed nut without complaint, Jihoon. You made me feel pretty good.” Jihoon chuckled into his chest and Woojin felt so endeared by him. That was his baby.

 

“You know, we didn’t even eat dinner. I’m a little disappointed.” Jihoon’s voice sounded genuinely sad.

 

“I’ll treat you to breakfast in the morning. Anything you want.”

 

“Waffles?” Jihoon’s voice started to drift off, sleep finally catching up with him.

 

“I’ll get you some waffles.” There was a beat of silence and only the sound of their breathing could be heard throughout the room. “Fuck, I love you, Jihoon.”

 

“I love you, Woojin.” 

 

Sunday

 

All good things have to come to an end-- life is too ephemeral to anything to last too long. This was no exception. Sunday is a new beginning… Their little vacation ended on Sunday and Woojin had things on his mind as they pulled out from the restaurant they had stopped at to get Jihoon his waffles. The silence in the car was deafening. The events of last night were playing on a loop in Woojin’s head to the point that he could barely even concentrate on driving. He had to say something. The road ahead of them was mostly empty, only passing a car every now and then. Woojin glanced at Jihoon who was looking down at his hands, a lollipop in his mouth from the restaurant. 

 

“Jihoon,” Woojin’s voice nearly quivered. “You know we have to talk about last night.”

 

“Hm? What about it?”

 

“You know we’re going back to school and we’re going to have to face people. ” Woojin’s hands were getting clammy against the leather steering wheel.

 

“I know.”

 

“I don’t mean to be that sensitive bitch but… what are we?” 

 

“Well, I don’t know. This is kind of complicated, Woojin… With everything, you know.”

 

“Yeah. That’s why I was asking since everything that happened last night happened.” Woojin was getting defensive, feeling jealous even that Jihoon was still considering things even after they fucked. 

 

“I still want you, Woojin. Relax. I just don’t know what we’re going to do.” Woojin’s heart did a flip, he was on a rollercoaster of emotions.

 

“What about Minji?”

 

“I know I have to break up with her. Obviously, after what happened, but please can we just not think about that. We’re having a good time and I want to savour it until we get back to Seoul.”

 

And Woojin understood perfectly.

 

***

 

The sun had perched itself high in the sky when they finally made it back to their campus. The parking lot was full of students  returning to campus for the following week of classes. Woojin dropped Jihoon at his dorm, he got out of the car, handing the keys over to him. 

 

“I’ll text you later. We’ll figure something out.” Jihoon said before turning and walking into his building.

 

“I’ll be waiting, angel.” He called after him, watching as he entered the building carrying his bag and making it home safely. 

 

Woojin had a spring in his step as he walked himself to his own dorm. It felt like heaven when he hit his own bed, it was welcoming and although the weekend was nice, he was decently happy to be home. He felt a lump in his back, realising that he was laying on his and Jihoon’s phone.  I’ll take this to him later. 

 

Jihoon, on the other hand, was being cornered in his dorm. When he strolled through the front door, Daniel and Minji were in the lobby of his building and he froze in his tracks, his eyes going wide.

 

“Jihoon? Where the fuck have you been, no one’s been able to contact you or-- what the fuck is on your neck?”

 

Jihoon reached up and touched his neck, feeling where Woojin’s lips had been the night before, remembering the hickies that Woojin had left.

 

“I-- I went to the beach.” Jihoon said, his voice sounded small.

 

“Daniel told me about what happened with Woojin at the party. I know everything Jihoon. I know you were fucking with him. I know you were.” Minji’s voice was breaking, fuck.

 

“Minji, no please. I didn’t want it to be like this. Come on, please.” Jihoon didn’t know what to say to her… he hadn’t prepared for this, fuck. 

 

Minji had started crying and Daniel was standing beside her with his big ass doe eyes, unrelenting as they looked at Jihoon. He really didn’t want it to happen like this. He wanted it to be much cleaner and for them to split peacefully but this… this was brutal.

 

“I was with him. We went to Eurwangni together and I didn’t want to hurt you, I didn’t want it to happen like this, Minji. I really didn’t.” Daniel had put an arm around Minji, acting as a silent console. His gaze was so harsh, Jihoon despised being under it.

 

She broke her crying, looking up at Jihoon and staring deep into his eyes. “You love him, don’t you.” it was a statement, not a question. She sounded defeated, her voice was filled with pain and Jihoon could hear it.

 

“Yes. I love him.” There was no point in trying to smooth this over anymore. “We went on an excursion because I couldn’t stand to be here and I felt fucking trapped. But I love him.”

 

Minji let out a laugh that didn’t sound natural. “What a couple of faggots, huh? Fuck you, Jihoon. Three years down the drain for fucking nothing.” Daniel flinched at her words but followed her as she brushed past Jihoon anyways. 

 

Fucking hell.  

Chapter Text

Woojin always loved long showers-- which was just what he needed when he had gotten back to his dorm. His legs felt tired and the hot water would warm him right up in stark contrast against the cold air outside. Usually he let the water wash away everything that was bothering him, let it whisk away down the drain and make him feel calmer-- but this time, he let the steam engrave the events of the past weekend into his mind. He wanted to keep it there forever, burn it into his hippocampus and tuck it away like his own little secret. 

 

Woojin’s face was glowing with the utmost happiness as Daehwi stepped inside of his room. Daehwi stopped in the doorway, narrowing his eyes as Woojin smiled.

 

“What the fuck?” Was the only thing Daehwi managed to say— what else could he say? 

 

“Hwi.” Woojin looked up at him from his bed. 

 

“Wooj.”

 

“Hi.”

 

“Hi?” Daehwi stepped inside, shutting the door behind him. “How was your weekend, you big weirdo?”

 

Woojin took a deep breath, looking to the ceiling and blinking a couple times. “I don’t know what to say because I feel like if I speak about it… then it will disappear.” There was a beat of silence. “I think I’m in love with him, Daehwi. Like really, like love-love.”

 

“So it was that serious, huh? I take it this wasn’t just a friendly little excursion…” 

 

“Not at all, I swear to you it was the weirdest series of events I have ever lived through firsthand.” Woojin stood up, Jihoon’s phone in his hands. “I have to take this back to him, but I’ll tell you more later.”

 

“Woojin you’re really leaving again without telling me anything?” Daehwi rolled his eyes. “Don’t make me wait so long.”

 

He closed the gap between them, hugging Daehwi tightly. “I won’t.” He pulled away. “I’m sorry that was really weird.”

 

“Yeah, please don’t do that again. Just get out of here already.”

 

Woojin stepped out of the dorms, the air hitting him with a wicked bite where he hadn’t fully dried his hair from his shower. He felt the two phones clunking together in his hoodie pocket, his mind speaking up. 

 

I got two phones 

One for the plug and one for the load. 

 

He made it to Jihoon’s building on foot rather quickly, the bounce in his step helping to propel him forward. He opened the door and found himself situated at Jihoon’s room. He stared at the whiteboard that was stuck to the door, Jihoon’s name scrawled on it along with his roommates. He rapped three times in quick succession, not letting his nerves get the best of him after what had happened during the previous days. There was silence behind the door. Woojin checked his watch. 2 p.m. he should be here… He heard a creak within the room, feet padding on the floor before the door was jerked open. Jihoon’s roommate looked at Woojin, his eyes heavy and his hair askew atop his head. 

 

“Uh, hi.”

 

“What is it?” he said, leaning against the frame of the door. 

 

“Do you know where Jihoon is?”

 

“Dunno, maybe you should check the gym or something.” he closed the door abruptly and Woojin could hear him plopping on the bed on the other side of the door.  

 

Woojin huffed, turning from the door none the wiser. He noticed Jihoon walking towards him, hair wet and donning shorts and a tee-shirt with a towel hanging loosely around his neck-- Jihoon’s dorms had communal showers. Woojin pulled Jihoon’s phone out of his pocket and waved it at him, smiling as Jihoon met eyes. Jihoon’s face stayed unchanged, the small pout ever-prominent on his face.

 

“Hey, baby.” Woojin said. He knew better than to hug him here where anyone could walk into the hallway.

 

“Hey, Woojin.” his tone was short as he took his phone back from Woojin, avoiding his eyes. “Can we talk?”

 

“Sure, what’s going on?”

 

“Can we go somewhere?”

 

“Like where?” Woojin was starting to get kind of irritated that Jihoon wouldn’t look at him.

 

“Your dorm? I want to be alone.”

 

“Daehwi’s in my room, so I don’t think that’s a great idea. We can go to the caf? One of the chapels since morning services are over?”

 

“Yeah, anything’s fine. Let me put something else on.” 

 

-x-

 

Woojin pushed his way inside the catholic chapel, the room was dark, the lights having been shut off after their services earlier that morning. Woojin flipped a switch on the wall that illuminated the room and closed the door after Jihoon had followed him inside. The building was about as old as their university and it didn’t hold heat well-- but at least it was warmer than being outside. Woojin sat in the back pews as Jihoon took his seat next to him.

 

“What do you want to talk about?” Woojin felt sick, he was insecure enough from what had happened to him before and the reality of Jihoon reciprocating his feelings was harrowing, expecting him to turn back on his word at any moment.

 

“I think you know what’s coming, Woojin.” Jihoon’s eyes were downcast, his fingers tracing a patch of rough fabric on the pew.

 

For the first time since they had regrouped, Jihoon looked up at Woojin, his eyes red and glassy. He pulled his bottom lip between his teeth and took a deep breath in.

 

“What do you mean? What’s wrong?” 

 

“I saw Minji this morning when I came in. She saw this,” he pointed to the bruised flesh on his throat. “She knew everything, Woojin.”

 

“How did she find out so fast? No one even knew, I didn’t tell anyone.” Woojin's heart sped up, nearly thumping out of his chest. He felt numb and his ears were throbbing.

 

“Does it matter how she found out? She fucking knows. Daniel told her about shit? I don’t know.” Jihoon shook his head and put his head in his hands.

 

The silence in the room around them was powerful. It felt like Woojin was being crushed beneath the pressure. He didn’t know what he was meant to say in a situation like that, fuck if he even had any idea where to go from there.

 

“Are you okay, baby?”

 

“Woojin… please don’t call me that.” Jihoon’s voice quivered as he spoke. “I don’t think I can do this.”

 

“Oh.” Woojin felt himself cracking, his heart shattering into a million pieces and scattering to the rest of his body making him feel heavy. His skin was too weak to hold all the sharp pieces inside. Everything he thought was right, everything he was afraid of was true and he couldn’t believe it was happening. Woojin took a deep breath, holding it in his lungs because he was afraid that if he breathed out he would start crying and he wouldn’t be able to stop.

 

“I don’t want to hurt you, Woojin. But I know we won’t be able to make any of this work.”

 

Woojin chuckled, he felt a chord snap inside of him. “You don’t want to hurt me?” he was right, tears had started running down his cheeks and he couldn’t stop them once he released the breath that was tucked tightly inside of him. “You really waited all that fucking time to tell me that. We spent a fucking weekend together at the beach and acted like everything was dandy and for what? Just for you to turn back on it and act like the shit never happened? We’re just done like that?”

 

“I’m sorry, I know how it looks, but--”

 

“No. I just want you to listen for a second because I’ve never felt more used in my life. Even when that guy Kai or whoever the fuck uploaded the fucking video of me I didn’t feel as bad as this. And why? Because you’re scared? You’re ending us because you’re fucking afraid.”

 

“Shut the fuck up, Woojin. Stop acting like there was never an ‘us.’ You knew at the start of the weekend that it was a trial and that I still wasn’t sure.” 

 

“You think you can just try on being gay? What the hell do you think this is? Did you think you could just use me for some little experiment or something? You know just because I don’t act like a lot bothers me doesn’t mean you can walk on me like that. I have fucking feelings too.” Woojin clenched his jaw tightly.

 

“What? Like those guys you fucked the past few years haven’t felt the same way?”

 

“You’re really going to bring in my sex life from before into this and use it against me? That’s low, and as if it's an excuse to treat me like that... You have no fuckin’ idea what you’re talking about, those were just hookups. You said you loved me.”

 

The room was silent again and Woojin's head was pounding. Jihoon kept his head down. “I’m sorry Woojin. I’m so sorry.” 

 

“We’re broken, huh?” Woojin said, his voice broke as he finally let the tears envelop him. Jihoon looked up at him, tear stained cheeks present along with his wet eyelashes. “I should’ve known better than to do this in the first place. It's my fault.”

 

Jihoon was silent, propping his elbows on his knees and putting his face in his hands again. Woojin stood from where he was sitting, not bothering to say anything as he made his way to the door and walked out. Breathing felt hard and he felt like he was about to explode. His feet beat on against the ground as he moved quickly, wanting to put as much distance between him and the chapel as he could. He didn’t want to think about what had just happened and he didn’t want to see Jihoon anymore, not now. And again, Woojin ran away.

 

He didn’t want to leave necessarily, but his chest was swelling and he was afraid that if he didn’t get away from Jihoon then he would explode. What had just happened didn’t feel fucking real and his vision got blurrier and blurrier the further he got away from the other. 

 

Woojin thought back on the past few days-- the past week even, running everything Jihoon had said to him or had done and looking back at it had seemed so ingenuine. Woojin didn’t want to believe it, but how everything played out felt so off. Woojin was sick to his stomach, feeling like he was going to eject on the ground at any moment but he pressed on. Looking back, he found it odd how eager Jihoon had been, like maybe this is exactly what he wanted to happen. Woojin pushed that thought out of his head as soon as it had appeared-- he had known Jihoon for a long time, long enough to know he wouldn’t do something that mean to him, right? 

 

Woojin really didn’t know what to feel anymore, nothing in his life had felt real for the past couple of years so who the fuck knows, maybe Jihoon really did have some ulterior motive to get at Woojin somehow. He felt like he had been gutted like a fish, his insides and everything within him left back at the chapel spilled over the floor. Woojin didn’t feel like himself.

 

He felt like he had gotten a decent distance away, not paying attention to where he ended up. He pulled his phone from his pocket, his free hand wrapping around himself in the cool air. He clicked on Daehwi’s contact, letting it ring out before he heard an answer on the other end of the line.

 

“Wooj, where the hell are you? I thought you said you were going to be quick.”

 

“Daehwi,” Woojin's voice cracked as he spoke. His mouth downturned to a frown as his bottom lip quivered. He choked out a sob before clamping a hand to his mouth to silence himself.

 

“Woojin? What’s wrong, where are you?”

 

“Can you come get me, I really don’t want to walk back home now.” 

 

“Yeah, of course, text me where you are. Stay right there.” Daehwi hung up quickly, leaving Woojin with his phone pressed to the side of his face. He opened his text messages, looking at the ones from Jihoon that had been sent the previous week leading up to the night they went away. Why the fuck did he even send me these.  

 

Woojin didn’t want to see the messages, he didn’t want to see the contact name he had for Jihoon or his contact picture of him with his stupid red nose. He felt like he could crush the metal and glass between his fingers and squeeze it into his skin. 

 

“Woojin?”

 

Shit. 

 

The voice behind his was familiar, too fucking familiar that Woojin didn’t want to fucking turn around, not like this. He wiped his eyes and rubbed his sleeves over his face, trying to gain back his composure before addressing whoever was waiting.

 

“Hey.” he turned around to face Daniel, hoping to god that he would be on his way after passing along a curt “hello.” Woojin sure as hell didn’t feel like dealing with that now.

 

“What’re you doing here?”

 

Woojin shook his head, afraid to speak to the boy before him.

 

Daniel let out a small chuckle. “How was your weekend?” His condescending tone hit Woojin’s ears wrong, making him feel like Daniel was being malicious. 

 

“Excuse me?”

 

“Yeah, we know what happened. It’s pretty fucked up that you did that to Minji.” Daniel cocked his head. “What was going through your mind, did you really think going for your het best friend was really going to ever work out?”

 

Woojin had waltzed past sad and went straight into a rage. “How fucking dare you? You don’t know shit about anything, Daniel.”

 

Daniel crossed his arms over his chest, his stance widening. Woojin knew what he was doing. Guys do it all the time to make themselves seem bigger, more intimidating. But Woojin knew better than that. “How fucking dare ‘I?’ How fucking dare you, you really fucked up my sisters relationship. And just because you couldn’t keep your fucking dick in your pants, huh? How’d you even get him to do it?”

 

“Shut the fuck up, Daniel.”

 

“Did you have to coax him? Or did he just open up as soon as you offered to take him somewhere. I’m genuinely curious.”

 

“I said shut the fuck up.”

 

“I’m just asking you a question, if you’re going to fuck someone you should be able to answer up to it.”

 

Woojin could feel himself breathing harder, his heart beating quickly. His vision was blurring again but this time it was because he was so fucking mad he couldn’t see straight. He took a step toward Daniel, pushing him by the shoulders and causing him to stumble back.

 

“I don’t have to answer to anyone.” Woojin's fists clenched at his side.

 

“Watch out, bitch. What the fuck do you think you’re doing?” Daniel was right back in Woojin’s face, his shoulder knocking against him.

 

“I’m telling you, don’t fucking push me asshole.” Woojin puffed his chest out, pushing Daniel back away from him a bit. Daniel pushed Woojin back and that was enough for him. He stepped back, rearing his arm behind him before driving a right hook across Daniel’s jaw. Daniel was caught off guard but he collected himself quickly after. 

 

Woojin's fists were lead, he propelled them forward aiming for Daniel’s face and landing most of the blows. Daniel wasn’t being taken down easily, he landed blows to Woojin in the face too, but at that point Woojin couldn’t feel anything. His body felt like it was rattling and his adrenaline was spiking He could feel warmth running down his face and he could feel a sting in his knuckles, but besides that he was numb. 

 

Woojin faltered a bit, leaving himself open and Daniel seized him around the waist, tackling him to the ground. Woojin hit the pavement with a loud grunt as Daniel sat on his hips and punched him in the face. Woojin grabbed his wrist after taking about three punches and pulled out as hard as he could, getting Daniel off of him and onto the ground beside him before rolling on top of him and doing the same. 

 

They were both tired, and Woojin's breathing was even heavier, like his lungs were struggling to push out air. Daniel put his hands over his face, blood running from his nose. Woojin slapped him one good time, making his own palm sting. Arms wrapped around his shoulders, pulling him off the ground. Woojin yelled, flailing his arms before he could register what was happening.

 

“Woojin. Woojin! Woojin! What the fuck is happening?” Daehwi was pulling him back away from Daniel who sat up and rose to his feet again, trying to get to Woojin. Daehwi swung him around getting in between them. “Back the fuck up!”

 

“I’m gonna fucking kill you!” He shouted over his shoulder, Daehwi’s grip on him too tight and Woojin too tired to try to escape.

 

“Wait until I fucking see you again and your little boyfriend isn’t around to save you, you better be fucking glad you’re getting out of it this time, punk ass bitch. I’ll fucking get you, asshole!”

 

Woojin was being pushed into the passenger seat of Daehwi’s car before he could register what was happening. He sat slack against the seat and his head lulled back, hitting the rest behind him. His hands were burning, he held them up in front of his face and saw that his palms had been scraped-- must’ve happened when they were on the ground. His hands were shaking as he held them up. He touched his face, wincing when his fingers brushed over his cheek. His numbness was dissipating and he could feel everything again, everything from the physical pain to his self-pity that came back in waves. 

 

“God, I can’t let you go anywhere alone.” Daehwi said as he got into the drivers side and took off driving down the street. He hooked a left and drove away from Woojin's dorm.

 

“Where are we going?”

 

“My house. You look fucking terrible.”

 

“Oh. Thanks.” Woojin squeezed his eyes shut. “I feel fucking terrible.”

 

The rest of the car ride was silent as they drove into the nicer part of town. Woojin watched out the window as the roads lined with leafless trees turned into roads lined with expensive ass houses. Daehwi stopped abruptly and Woojin jerked forward, his vision coming into focus. They were already at Daehwi’s house. He opened the door and let himself out, slamming the car door behind him. He followed Daehwi into the house and let Daehwi pull him to the bathroom. 

 

Woojin sat on the edge of the bathtub, pushing his fists into his hoodie pocket. His eyes were downcast. Woojin was completely defeated, he felt dejected and everything had changed in the blink of an eye. Daehwi knelt before him, squeezing between his knees with rice water cleansing wipes.

 

“Sorry, I don’t really keep a lot of first aid stuff here.” he mumbled as the cloth was pressed gently against Woojin's face. He leaned into the coolness of it and flinched when Daehwi rubbed over an apparent cut on his face. “What the fuck happened, Woojin?”

 

Woojin was silent but Daehwi understood. He didn’t press him when his question was met with silence-- Woojin always talked when he was ready to. He just kept wiping the blood off of Woojin's face until he was cleaned up. Daehwi stood up, throwing away the dirty cloths he had used and placing a hand on Woojin's shoulder. Woojin felt the wave crashing against him again, unable to keep the dam in place that kept him at bay and in control. He took a sharp breath in and leaned his head against Daehwi. Daehwi always took care of him, was always there to pick up the pieces when Woojin fucked up and Woojin felt grateful. 

 

His body shook as silent sobs wracked through him. Daehwi’s hand ran up from his shoulder into his hair and gently rubbed his head. “It’s okay, Woojin. Everything’s going to be okay, my baby.”

 

“Everything’s different now.” Woojin managed to get out.

 

And it was.