Jaemin can do many things.
If someone were to ask what he’s good at, he would smile, wide, charming, maybe a little cocky, and say it would be faster to ask what he’s not good at. He’s Jaemin Na – he can tie his shoes under five seconds, spin a ball on his fingers, recite all the words to god’s plan, and if that wasn’t enough, he’s also really good at moving things with his mind.
He’s Jaemin Na – he’s beloved by the country, invited to all grand openings, cited in high school textbooks, and his face is plastered across a major brand for shoes. He’s one of the greatest superheroes in the country – not in his words, but the public consensus. He supposes there is a reason the country has fallen in love with him. After all, most superheroes are good at creating small fires in their hands, always pulling out the same card in poker, or hitting strikes in the bowling alley. In a world where everyone can do a little bit of something, he stands out because he can do a little bit of everything.
He tries not to be arrogant, but he thinks it’s kind of cool that he gets new sneakers every month.
He’s the young Superman, the up and coming Spiderman, a household name in the country, advertised on television and packaged in a suit of white and blue.
There’s just one small problem. A small problem that has been the cause of many restless nights and fumbling missions, losing his balance on skyscrapers and loosening his hold on hovering cars. He hasn’t botched any missions, not yet at least, but it seems like with every passing moment, the small problem is becoming a big problem. A big, boy-shaped problem.
A problem that is right in front of him.
A problem with soft, brown hair and a slender nape.
His pencil snaps.
He doesn’t know what it is about Lee Donghyuck.
But, when Donghyuck turns to him, his mouth chewing on the end of a pencil, his eyeliners smudged around heavy eyes, as he blinks at him, slow and languid, suddenly he can’t really breath, and his nerves are like water on a live electric wire, buzzing with adrenaline, except the kind that makes his body go into a complete standstill.
“Truth or dare.” Donghyuck drawls, leaning forward in a white button-up, one part of the school uniform, except he’s unbuttoned one, no two, of the top buttons, leading to a neckline that hangs dangerously low, showing much more sun-kissed skin than should be allowed. And the moles – oh goodness, the pattern of moles from his neck to his cheek is really too much for him.
All he knows is that Lee Donghyuck is a big problem. Maybe the greatest threat to the world in all history. Or, at least, the greatest threat to his world, in all the time he has been alive. All superheroes in the comic books have a weakness, a kryptonite, but he gets a little skin and suddenly he’s powerless.
“Uh,” He’s short-circuiting, and he doesn’t know where to look, “Truth.”
“Okay, you can only bring one person with you to a deserted island - who will it be?”
He settles on looking at the space between his eyes. The only problem is that his brain, or the lack of a functioning brain, has kicked in and has decided that the soft and gentle slope of the bridge of his nose is more than attractive, framing the round features of his face so well. If given a pen and paper, he could write poems about all the curves and angles of his face.
“Uh, that would, well,” He chews on the inside of his mouth, ignoring the thrum in his hands that really wants to lift the classroom out of the school and throw himself into space. His mind is telling him to hurry and answer, because he can’t keep the boy of his dream waiting. Wait, did he just say boy of his dreams? Well, he does have many dreams about him, but the phrase doesn’t feel right to even come close to understanding the problem that is Lee Donghyuck. “Do– Dolly Parton.”
Jaemin can do many things. But it’s becoming very apparent to him that there is something that he cannot do, and it is hold a conversation with Lee Donghyuck without making an absolute fool of himself. He knows this because the last time Donghyuck had turned around and asked him a question, he ended up revealing a little too much about how the sight of small animals make him cry.
“Oh.” Donghyuck looks at him blankly, before his teeth are catching on the metal of his pencil, and his eyes are crinkling, and that, now that, might just be the most adorable thing that he has ever seen in the world. “That’s funny.”
Jaemin kind of feels like crying.
Jaemin hides his face in his knees, scrunched up at the edge of the tower.
He’s one of the greatest superheroes in the country, maybe in the world, and he knew that there would be a time in his career that he would go through a writer’s block, or in his case, a hero’s block. He’s been in the game of catching criminals and preventing crime since he was seven. Of course, when he was only a child, he would wear a cheap mask from the dollar store and run around the neighbourhood, suspending bullies in the air and helping old ladies across the street. But he doesn’t remember a time in his life when he wasn’t a superhero.
“Earth to Rapture.”
He’s met the president three times now. He’s the youngest superhero to be rewarded an accolade of heroes. He’s scheduled to attend a world conference about the global influence of superheroes in the summits of Sweden. He’s made countless trips around the world, speaking to important figures, important superheroes, shaking their hands, and smiling in his wide, charming way that captures the room, never stuttering his words or flustering in his step.
“Jaemin, are you listening?” There’s a shock to his arm, and he looks up from his hunched position at the superhero standing beside him in a spandex suit of a dark blue, decorated with the emblem of lightning on his chest. “Can you please pay attention for one second? We are in the middle of a mission.”
He doesn’t respond, but he does stand up, brushing down his jeans.
He would wear a suit, if only to match with the other superheroes, but there’s no point in wearing a suit or a mask when everyone in the country, in the world, knows what he looks like. It’s been years since he came out to the public, and also secured a sponsorship from a soda company as the brand model for sparkling water.
“Is this because of your small problem?” He asks, crossing his arms. Of course, he was paired with the only superhero around his age that could come close to his caliber for the mission, and of course, that meant he was paired with Elektraboy, or as he knows him, Mark Lee. Even while Jaemin walks away, balancing his feet on the border of the tower, only a step away from falling down, he continues pressing him for answers. “What was his name? The boy in your physics and elementals class?”
He doesn’t mind teaming up with other superheroes, and Elektraboy is a well-respected hero, even if his elemental powers are only effective in close combat. He is a part of one of the most renowned superhero teams in the country – the seventh sense, and they have undertaken many missions together. If truth be told, now that he thinks about it, Jaemin hasn’t really teamed up with any superhero other than Elektraboy. There was one time he teamed up with a girl who could turn into a crow, but that experience was rather bad, what with the fact that she couldn’t change back until a full 24 hours had passed.
He would prefer if Mark didn’t ask so many questions, but he supposes things could be worse.
“His name is Lee Donghyuck.” He mutters, his heart running to the mere mention of his name. He watches Mark’s reaction, even though most of his face is hidden, the upper half of his face covered with a blue mask, only revealing a closed mouth. A part of him is hopeful that Mark, his classmate and a student with many supposed connections, not only to elementals, but psychics and empaths, might have some information on him.
“Ah, yes. I remember now.” Mark nods, rather thoughtful, before pushing a finger to his chest, a shiver of lightning passing through him. “Look, Jaemin, I don’t want to mess with whatever is going on in your love life right now, but I do not like being dropped onto the ground when we are a hundred feet in the air.”
“It happened once.” He frowns. And it’s true, it only happened once when they were hovering over the city and he saw a billboard with a half-clothed model in an outfit with a mesh of a shirt and black leather, and because he was thinking about Donghyuck, like he always is, his brain decided it was a good idea to put one and two together and suddenly he’s flushing all the way to his toes and Mark is falling.
“I’d much rather it happens zero times.” Mark looks at his watch on his wrist, and he knows its silver because he always brushes against it and ends up getting electrocuted, “Just, like, keep that stuff in your head. I don’t really want to die on a mission, especially with you, no offence.”
“Okay, then let’s get it.”
Jaemin steps away from the tower, and Mark follows closely behind, a little more nervous. There was a time when he was scared of heights, but that fear, much like many of his fears were soon overcome, because he doesn’t need to be scared of heights when he can make anything, and he does mean anything, stay in the air.
They are falling down the forty-five-story building, and he takes the time to run a hand through his black hair, brushing through with his outstretched fingers. He’s Jaemin Na, one of the greatest superheroes in the country, and even if he isn’t wearing a super suit, he has to look presentable.
There is a busy metropolis under his feet, the hustle and bustle of traffic around them. There are a few people in the streets that stop to stare at them, but most of them are accustomed to the adventures of superheroes. After all, the city has one of the only schools for superheroes in the country – it makes sense that they are used to the high population of superhumans flying around, speeding through traffic, talking to flowers, or whatever little thing they can do.
Mark is looking at his watch, as they land on the ground in front of the national museum.
“You want to be in, or out?” He asks.
“Doesn’t matter.” Jaemin shrugs, his hands in his pockets.
There’s a boom in the air, and they turn to look at a cloud of smoke rising from another building.
“I’ll be out,” Mark exhales, kicking the toe of his sneakers on the ground. Before he’s running to the explosion, he turns to him and gives a voice to his thoughts one more time, “Rapture. Try and remember what I said – keep it in your head.”
Keep it in his head.
He’s always thinking about Lee Donghyuck, anyways.
The doors of the museum open, and he steps in.
He’s never been to a museum. Well, he has, many times, but he’s only went to the museum when he’s on a mission, preventing a robbery, interrupting a heist, or talking down a supervillain that is trying to become one of the pieces of art, which to him, doesn’t really count as a day in the museum. He’s seen all the walls, all the artifacts, and treasures, and broken some of them too, but he’s never been to the museum.
The guards at the booth are tied in their chairs, heads rolling as they snore.
He waves them away, walking through the museum, following a trail of broken glass. There are no patrons, and no criminals to be found, but he knows where they are. There’s one place that these robbers always go – the exhibit for diamonds, the heirlooms of some old and rich queen from across the sea, located in the middle of the museum, and so frequently broken into that he does sometimes wonder why the city does not invest in a superhero to live in the exhibit. But he supposes that is why he, one of the greatest superheroes in the country, is here to save the day.
And yes, there they are.
The robbers look at him, holding priceless pieces of jewelry in their hands and pulling down paintings with their canes, and they pause. He knows that they know who he is, even when he is dressed in worn jeans and a discoloured hoodie, and they turn, sprinting into the other direction. Only one of them races toward him, their hands raised as he starts thinking about that one scene from the movie about the fox and the hound. It makes him a little sad, but he doesn’t need to blink, to move his hands, or wiggle his ears, for the robbers to be suspended in the air.
There are jewels glinting in the air, a few bars of gold, and one painting of a woman and her cat.
There is a group of school children huddled behind them on the walls, trembling under yellow hats and blue uniforms. He smiles at them, wide and charming, and they stare at him in wonder. He steps toward them, and notices the decoration of stickers on their hats, stickers of superheroes, ignoring the movements of the robbers.
“Everything’s going to be okay.” He says, and there’s a whistle of wind, a bullet shot at him, but he doesn’t move, only looks down at the children as the bullet comes to a slow, stop in the air, right beside his ear. He takes it in his hands, rolling the metal between his fingers, before he drops it onto the ground. He holds up his hands, smiling at the children. “See – we’re all safe.”
They smile back.
He knows he did a good thing, or at least, the moral thing, but it’s when the people smile, come to him with their thanks, and he knows that they are on the ground and that they are safe, that he really feels like he did something.
He knows that voice.
The mellow voice that he hears in class, and wonders where he can bottle up a sound and keep it forever.
Jaemin stares at the jewels, trying to get a look at his appearance from the twinkle of light that bounces from the rubies, the sapphires, and the bright diamonds. It’s not the best reflection, but he’s not in the position to be picky, as he pulls at his mouth, checking his teeth, rubbing his cheeks, making sure there isn’t anything on his face. The criminals stare at him, floating around in the air.
“Hey.” He turns, putting on his best smile.
He feels like passing out.
Because, Lee Donghyuck, the greatest threat to the entire world, is dressed in a red bomber jacket, with the graphic of a band on a white shirt, and dark jeans that do nothing to hide the length of his legs. And there are rips, oh god, there are rips on the jeans that show the slivers of his skin, that should be prohibited because it is doing too much to his heart. He’s always been the most adorable student in his school uniform, but in normal clothes, well, Jaemin might as well retire as a superhero, and live the rest of his life in a basement, in the middle of nowhere, the image of Donghyuck in normal clothes burned under his eyelids.
“I was wondering when you’d come save the day.” Donghyuck says, so normally, so matter of fact, as if the words are not reverberating down his mind, his senses detonating with the sensation of warmth. He might have to get that tattooed onto his skin, because wow, the words, the sentence, the structure of his mouth as he almost smiles, is a dream.
There’s a rush in his head, and he can’t focus on anything other than the thought of Lee Donghyuck.
He almost loses his hold on the robbers, as they come dangerously close to the ground. He doesn’t even notice that there’s a memory in his head about that one sad scene from the fox and the hound, or an outline of black beside him, until there’s a shout, and there is a man passed out in front of him.
His hair is standing up, the heat of electricity in the air, and he brushes it down.
Mark stares at him, and he can only imagine the expression he has under the mask.
“Good to see that everything is under control, Rapture.” He says, smiling, but he steps closer, gripping his arm with a shock that buzzes through his frame, whispering in a low voice, “I hope everything is under control, Jaemin. Please, just focus on the mission, and remember what I said.”
Keep it in his head.
He shakes his head, and he guides the patrons out of the museum. The cameras are flashing, and the reporters are scurrying to his side, pressing microphones into his face. He looks into the crowd behind them, a huddle of fans holding up the exclusive posters of his face that the soda company released, and the laughing school children, the fussing parents, but he can’t find the boy in a red bomber jacket.
If he’s disappointed, he doesn’t show it.
The camera flashes, and Jaemin smiles.
Jaemin Na is not scared of anything.
He shouldn’t be scared of anything. He’s one of the greatest superheroes in the country, and when he was in the first grade, he saw a girl being pushed from the slide and for a minute, everything in the city stopped, birds were caught in the air, the rustle of leaves paused, and pencils hovered over the ground. For a moment, they thought that he could stop time, but that was not correct, because Jaemin Na is just really telekinetic.
But he is a little scared.
A little scared of only one, small thing.
He groans, letting his head fall onto the surface of his desk.
There’s an unsteady pencil that pokes his side.
He turns his head to stare at his friend, his forehead scrunched up and his eyes narrowed, his fingers pushing on the sides of his head as he tries to point the pencil in his direction. He doesn’t have many friends, mostly because of a childhood spent flying across the country, fighting against supervillains, but there aren’t many telekinetics in the city, and they have to stick together, even if they kind of suck at using their powers.
He breaks the pencil, turning away.
“Hey, that’s not very nice,” Jeno says, a frown on his face as he picks up the pieces of his pencil, “What’s up with you today? You’re like a slice of old bread. Even when Mr. Kim went on a tangent about how talented you are on the morning announcements, you barely even reacted. I thought you loved attention.”
“I do not love attention.”
“Well, sure,” He replies, without a change in his voice, “But really, what’s up?”
There are only a few students in the classroom, hunched over their desks, their hands suspended over the orange pencils that will not move. The teacher, a retired superhero with the chance of sometimes healing wounds, was recalled to a mission across the country, leaving them a small assignment – make a pencil stand up.
“Remember when I told you about that small problem of mine,” Jaemin confesses, a whisper in the room. He knows that there is no one watching him, listening in on him, but he’s scared, that he moment he says that name, they will be summoned in front of him, an orange pencil in his mouth, as his eyes crinkle, the most adorable thing in the world. He smacks his head against the desk, and then whips his head back up. “Well, it’s becoming a really big problem.”
The students look at him, their concentration broken.
He rubs his reddened forehead.
“Oh, yeah I remember that,” Jeno nods, stacking the pieces of his pencil on top of each other. When the tower falls, because he’s never been good at controlling the movements of his hand when it comes to fine details, he turns to him, “Have you gotten the chance to talk to him?”
He likes adventure. He likes surprises. He likes rollercoasters. But, he does not like the way that his throat becomes parched, his mouth becomes strapped to a rollercoaster, and his nerves become scrambled, as he, one of the greatest superheroes in the world, is reduced to a mess in front of Lee Donghyuck, unable to think about anything other than the shade of his dark eyes.
“Sure, you can.” He smiles in encouragement. “What course is he in? I know some people in the other courses that might know him, and then again, there’s always my brother if you wanted to ask him.”
“I don’t know.”
“Oh.” Jeno tries again, “Do you know what other classes he takes?”
“I don’t know.”
“Oh.” Jeno tries again, and the scene is repeating, “Do you know what power he has?”
“I don’t know.”
“Hm. Okay. What do you know about him?”
Jaemin raises his head.
What does he know about Lee Donghyuck?
He pulls out his notebook, bringing a pencil from another student’s desk, and even as she protests, he ignores her, writing down all the thing he knows about the boy in physics and elementals.
Jaemin is scribbling, before he pauses, and takes a long stare at his school notebook. It’s covered with hearts and stars, a scattering of words written around, all the words that would come to his mind when he was daydreaming about Lee Donghyuck – red, cute, adorable, his light brown hair, his sun-kissed skin and wow, his legs are really nice, although he’s only seen them through the rips of his jeans.
“You only described his appearance,” Jeno notes, peering down at his notebook.
He really does have a problem.
And to think, he doesn’t know anything about the problem.
The world really is doomed.
“Huh.” Jaemin replies, and he’s drawing another heart.
He doesn’t know what kind of power Donghyuck has.
But, if he had to make a guess, Lee Donghyuck probably has the power to make him fall in love.
Jaemin is not in love.
The teacher is at the front of the class taking about how the laws of physics apply to elemental powers, the third time this week because damn, combining science and superpowers just doesn’t make sense, writing on the chalkboard, but he’s not listening because he’s staring at the back of Donghyuck’s neck. He leans forward, unconsciously, at least, he hopes so, wondering how the back of his neck can look so pretty, and what the chances are that Donghyuck will turn around, fall over at the perfect angle, and kiss him.
No, he’s not in love.
He flushes, and the eraser on his desk is floating.
Donghyuck holds out a stick of gum.
There’s a gray eyeshadow brushed under his eyes, that makes the slow blink of his eyes feel more dangerous, more palpable, more appealing that they already are, and it’s beautiful, blowing out the darkness in his eyes against the warm honey of his skin. And oh, there must be someone up there that really wants him to suffer, because there’s a small, gold hoop on his ear that brushes against his brown hair, and he wonders if he’s still dreaming.
His mouth is falling open.
He’s still holding out the stick of gum, wrapped in silver.
He can make out the length of his dark eyelashes, and it’s enough to make his brain stop, if only for a moment.
He reaches for silver and tries not to stutter when their fingers touch. He’s been electrocuted by Mark many times, whether it was on accident or on purpose, and the cross of electricity in his body is a familiar feeling, but there is no shock that can compare to the kick that he gets from the touch of his hand.
“Thanks.” He says, before he says something else.
Donghyuck nods, but not without using his presumed powers. His mouth pushes out, and he’s blowing a bubble, the shade of honey, when he turns away.
And when he turns, Jaemin has to travel the four corners of the world to gather his wits about him, or whatever he has left of his brain, which admittedly, would not be much, as he stares at the stick of gum.
He’s not in love, but there’s a heat in his chest that makes it hard to breath.
He opens the windows, oh so carefully opening the package, and pops the gum into his mouth.
It’s sweet, the taste of peaches. And he knows from this moment on, his favorite food, his favorite fruit, his favorite dessert, and his favorite pastime have become the sweet taste of peaches. He knows that the taste will remind him of Lee Donghyuck, and his pouty, and in his humble opinion, rather kissable lips, pressing out a bubble.
“Is there something you want to share with the class, Jaemin?”
The teacher’s voice interrupts his thoughts.
He looks around, and notices that the chairs are hovering in the air, the students in the class struggling to stay seated and not fall onto the floor, their knuckles white against the edges of the chair.
“Oh, I’m sorry.”
The chairs return to the ground.
He’s not in love.
But, in the back of his mind, in the small, small part of his mind, he dares to wonder.
He wonders if this is what Donghyuck tastes like.
The lights explode.
Jaemin stands on the subway, his ear on the phone.
“Okay, Rapture,” Mark’s voice cuts in from the phone, and from the ricocheting sounds in the background, he can make a guess that he is on the undercover mission with seventh sense somewhere across the sea, a mission that can’t be completed by someone who doesn’t wear a mask, “I texted you the information, but just to make sure we’re on the same page, the supervillain is going to be on car nine, the last car, and you should intercept him at 5:13:23 PM.”
He nods, before he remembers that he’s on the phone.
“Yeah, I got it.” Jaemin says, brushing the bottoms of his new blue sneakers on metal.
“I know you do,” He continues, and he can almost feel the surge of electricity passing through the phone, “But please, please, please, focus on the mission. I won’t be there to back you up, so you’re responsible for everything you do, and whatever you don’t do. Oh, and try to keep a watch around so that you actually know what time it is.”
“I’ll keep that in mind,” He rolls his eyes, bouncing the phone around his hands. “Oh, the connection is getting really bad, I’ll have to end the call here.”
Mark is saying something, but he ends the call.
The subway is moving under his feet, and he walks in the opposite direction, towards the last car.
There is a renowned subway line that crosses through the city, running under the ground, and over the ground on the bridges that weave through the buildings. He’s been on the subway many times, because criminals like to hang out in the trains, for some reason or another. He doesn’t know how many times that he has had to save the subway from falling over a dead end, or stopped the subway from crashing into another, or stopped a mastermind from blowing up the subway lines, but the conductor does have his autograph stitched onto his hat, so it must have been many times.
It’s theatrical, he supposes, to take over the metro that runs under the setting sun.
There are a few onlookers that look out from their windows, and he waves at them, smiling. There’s a few children that are sitting on the balconies, and he sends over some butterflies their way.
They laugh, and he shoves his phone in his pocket.
He tightens the strings of his hoodie.
Keep it in his head.
Keep it in his head.
He swings over the back of the subway car, and from the clear door he can make out a few passengers.
He opens the door and walks to the middle, his hands in his pockets.
There’s a man in a pinstriped suit and a bowling cap, facing the door that connects to the next car, a backpack wrapped around his front as he pulls out a fumble of red and blue wires, sticking them to the door.
The passengers stare at Jaemin, and he stares at the man.
The man turns, and then gasps.
Jaemin lifts him onto the wall, pulling the backpack away from him.
He opens the backpack, finding a tangle of wires, a muddle of scotch tape, and a ticking time bomb.
Oh, a bomber.
Maybe he should have read the text that Mark sent him.
Jaemin looks at the bright numbers, then at the man, then at the numbers, then at the man again.
He rubs his eyes.
He must be dreaming, because the man looks exactly like Lee Donghyuck.
His brain knows that it isn’t Donghyuck. There’s no reason that he would be on the subway carrying around a bomb, and not in such a horrendous outfit of black and white stripes, but he still looks so cute, so pretty, even under the fluorescents lights of the subway, because it’s Lee Donghyuck.
He heart doesn’t know anything other than what it sees, and flusters.
“You’re,” He says through his teeth, but there’s the squeeze in his chest.
Donghyuck – or, not, Donghyuck smirks, returning to the ground.
“Take a seat.” Donghyuck, or not Donghyuck says.
And he does.
“Give me the backpack.” Donghyuck, or not Donghyuck says.
And he does.
The passengers are staring at him, a few of them typing into their phones, a few of them looking around for the cameras, and rather than scared, they look interested in the situation that is unfolding before them. He looks at them, and the banner that is plastered above them, where he is holding up a red cape with a wide, charming smile, a campaign to promote the superhero organization and the school under it’s name.
He’s one of the greatest superheroes in the country, and yet here he is, sitting on the ground, unable to do anything because someone only looks like Lee Donghyuck.
He closes his eyes, trying to think about something else, trying to keep it out of his head, but Mark’s words are repeating in his head, keeping it in his head, as the thought of Donghyuck makes his hands feel warm. From his dark eyes, rimmed with eyeliner, and the shades of a dim eyeshadow painted across his eyelids, sparkling when the light hits it at the right moment, and he thinks about how nice his hands are, so small and slim, curling around the orange of the pencil, and when he’s lucky, rub against the back of his neck.
There was a time that he saw Donghyuck wearing a pink blush, brushed over his cheeks and the dark moles on his face, making him look out of this world, or, out of his world. There was a test in class that day, and he couldn’t do anything but stare at the paper, drawing hearts in the blanks.
The teacher let him take it again, anyways.
He opens his eyes, and the Donghyuck, or not Donghyuck, is struggling to get tape off of his hand.
But, this Donghyuck, or not Donghyuck, doesn’t have a mole on his neck.
He shakes his hands.
The man is lifted from the ground, the backpack hanging from his fumbling hands.
“Everything’s going to be okay,” He smiles at the passengers.
He blows open the back door, and flies out, but not without taking the man and the ticking backpack.
They are flying through the sky, and while he doesn’t like travelling through the air at increased speeds, he takes the opportunity to skyrocket his way to the clouds, where he can make out the tops of the towers and the expanse of the sea that sits under the towering bridges under his feet.
“Ah, Rapture,” The man, who is looking less like Donghyuck every second, “You’re not going to drop me, right? I thought I was the one you love?”
He’s not in love.
Jaemin empties the contents of the backpack, looking at the bright numbers of the bomb.
There are only a few seconds left.
He throws the bomb up and drops the man down.
Of course, he would never break the law.
So, as the man is screaming as he careens downwards, he follows them.
And when they are only a breath away from the pavement, he stops them.
“Rapture.” The commissioner has his hat on his chest as he salutes in front of the station. “Thank you for your service.”
“It’s my pleasure.” He smiles, wide and charming.
The rest of the force in front of the station salutes, and there is an explosion of color in the skies as he turns the bomber over to their hands. There are cameras shuttering, and a crowd has gathered to greet him, pressing flowers into his hands, and asking him about his thoughts about the rise of supervillains in the city. When he gets the chance to look at his phone, he has many unseen messages from Mark, and before he thinks, he replies to him with the emoticon of a peach.
He might be in love.
“How do you know you’re in love?” He asks, a little to himself, a little to the world, a little to the girl beside him, who stares at him, bouncing a ball on the ground with a blank expression.
“Dude,” Yerim answers, “If you’re asking that, then you already are.”
He might be in love.
There’s a ball that flies at him, only for a moment, before it stops in front of his face, turns a sharp corner, and rebounds back to the student that threw it. There’s no rules that say that powers are not allowed to be used in the physical classes, even though they are intended to improve the physical health of the students. And it’s true-to-life, life outside of the school – he doesn’t fight fire with fire, or guns with knives, he just blinks, and all is as he wants it to be.
The gym teacher is staring at him, their arms crossed.
He stares at the bench and wonders how convincingly he can make it there.
While he thinks about the makings of his plan, there are balls being thrown in his direction, but they never make it to him. He’s repelled bullets, more times he can count, with his eyes closed and his arms behind his back, so a dodgeball is nothing more than child’s play. It might be harder thank he thinks to make it to the bench without drawing the suspicion of the gym teacher, especially when he was the one that saved him in a failed mission across the sea. One would think that Mercury, or Mr. Nakamoto, as he is known in school, would be more than nice after an experience like that, but he’s always pushed him to do better in class, probably because he’s seen what he can do against a militia of armed men.
“Here, Jaemin,” Yerim shouts, passing him a ball.
He catches it, and than takes it into his hands.
He knows that the city is swarming with crime, because supervillains are attracted to the company of superheroes, of a competition, of a challenge, and he’s one of the greatest superheroes in the country. It doesn’t make sense that he hasn’t been contacted with any incoming missions. Even his agent has gone silent.
He wonders if they heard about what happened in class.
He wonder if they know that he’s one of the greatest superheroes in the country.
The whistle blows, and he turns his stare at the group of students that are coming into the gym. He doesn’t recognize the class, and that would mean it is a class unconnected to telekinesis, and to some extent, elementals, because god knows he’s always stuck hanging out with elementals, because the headmaster found his powers similar to the manipulation of wind. He doesn’t see any of the other telekinetics having to take those complex elemental classes – why does he have to know about the philosophies of fire and the velocity of a rainstorm?
He almost gets hit by a ball, travelling at an unprecedented speed.
Jeno smiles at him from across the gym.
Yes, his friend is not good at making pencils stand or good at hovering erasers, but when he gets the direction right, he’s good at throwing things.
He smiles back, opening his arms.
It will hurt, but he would rather sit on the bench than stand around and do nothing.
There is a collection of balls headed his way, and from behind the shade of blue and red, he can make out a head of soft, brown hair, and the expanse of sun-kissed skin, and it makes him swallow the wrong way, and suddenly, he’s choking, hunching over as the balls are paused over his head. He’s able to regain his breath after a few coughs, and when he looks across the room, the students are crowded on the stands, and he can’t tell if he’s seeing things or if he’s dreaming.
He must be dreaming.
Because Donghyuck is across the room, and he’s wearing shorts.
He must be dreaming.
He’s not known for having the best eyes in the school, but he might just have developed some kind of sonar vision because all he can see is sun-kissed, legs that must go on for days, weeks, the rest of his life. They must have been created in heaven because they look so soft and plush, and yet, as Donghyuck flexes his legs, bending his knees, his legs tighten and he’s staring at the muscles of his spectacular calves.
He might be in love, after all.
He’s so caught up in his staring, that he doesn’t notice that the room has fallen silent.
He does notice that Donghyuck turns to stare at him.
Maybe he can manipulate time, because everything feels so slow, as Donghyuck chews on his bottom lip, his dark eyes blinking, slow and languid, and his pretty features wind into confusion.
Jeno isn’t moving.
Oh, he thinks, staring at the balls that are suspended in the air, the students and teachers that have stopped moving, the fans on the wall that have stopped blowing, oh. He hasn’t done something like this since he was in the first grade, when his emotions were out of control and his powers were a direct reflection of his emotions. But back then, there wasn’t a thing in the city that could move under the wake of his power, not his parents, not his friends, not his dog, not the girl he saved from falling off of the slide. Maybe that was because there wasn’t a thing in the city that he was in love with.
Donghyuck is walking towards him, his thumbs tucked into the pockets of his shorts.
He can’t breathe, and he’s scared that if he does breathe, that everything will disappear. It’s a strange feeling, to be scared, to be worried, to be flustered about every move you make, with wrong move from a broken heart, but it sets a drumming of his heart, and there is an expansion of his chest with the warmth that crackles under his skin, and it feels like he can breathe when he’s not breathing, like he’s alive.
“Truth or dare,” Donghyuck asks, and he’s chewing on his lips.
He’s scared, but the feeling of fear isn’t terrible.
“Uh,” He swallows, staring at his mouth, before returning to his eyes, “Truth.”
“If you were a song, what song would you be?”
“I would be, uh,” Jaemin says, trying to think of an answer, but it’s hard to look him in the eye when the dark shade of his eyes is threatening to swallow his world, consume his heart, and make him fall in love, in an order that is the greatest threat to the world. He really thinks he should sit on that bench, because his knees feel weak as he stands so close, well not even that close but it’s close for him, as he opens his mouth, “Come and get your love.”
His mouth is moving faster than his brain.
“Oh.” Donghyuck stares at him, humming in agreement. “I can see that.”
He follows his movements, humming under his breath.
Is Lee Donghyuck maybe, perhaps, potentially, catching onto his feelings?
He blinks, and the balls are falling on his head.
The room is silent, only for a moment, before the students are moving again. The students that are nearest to him are only staring at him with the widest of eyes, a blush rushing over their features.
He doesn’t move to the bench, even as Mr. Nakamoto is stalking towards him.
He can’t move, not when Donghyuck is looking at him, eyes crinkling in amusement.
He might be in love.
He doesn’t walk into the building.
Instead, he opens the windows to the seventieth floor of the headquarters of superheroes.
He steps into the board room, and there is an assemblage of superheroes that have gathered, lined up on the long table. He doesn’t recognize all of them, only the members of seventh sense, the foreign members of moonwalk, and he thinks that he sees a few alumni from the school, with his teachers included. He doesn’t have the time to remember all the names and faces of superheroes, not when the press would never let him team up with some psychic or shifter, because he would, quote on quote, steal their thunder.
There is no superhero that formally leads the organization, but there is a brain in the operations, a semblance of a leader – the head of seventh sense, the man who can predict the future, so long as it is raining. He doesn’t remember his superhero name, which, in his defense, is never used, because he’s the man in the shadows, the one pulling the strings, and there are no articles about the leader, or kind of leader, of the organization.
“You’re not giving me any missions.” Jaemin says, leaning against the wall. He would rather not sit beside the man who can only create fire on his feet, or the woman who can make you fall asleep, or perhaps, the worst of them all, the man who can read your mind, if you tell him your full name. He is one of the greatest superheroes in the world, and call him arrogant, but in a world where superheroes can do a little bit of something, he stands out, and so, he can’t sit down.
“Yes.” Taeyong turns from his seat, a white mask over his eyes. “We were informed about your situation.”
He almost laughs, but there isn’t a superhero at the table that is looking at him, including an apologetic Mark.
“And?” Jaemin frowns.
Taeyong looks at him.
“And,” He pauses, because the sky is blue, because his powers can’t tell him everything, and because Jaemin’s face is plastered on all the walls of the organization, “We signed you up for the elemental retreat at school.”
“I’m not an elemental.” He says, ignoring the headmaster’s disheartened expression.
“It’s not only for elementals, and you may find that many of your classmates will be there.” Taeyong reassures him in a gentle voice, before returning to the point, “We do have concerns about your performance, and we also think that it is a good time to give one of our greatest heroes in the organization a well-deserved break.”
Jaemin Na doesn’t take breaks.
Jaemin Na has been saving the world, well, that might be an overstatement, but he’s been trying to save the world since he was seven, and then did manage to save the world when he reached third grade. The youngest a superhero has ever been when saving the world, and to think how easy it was to throw the bomb into the air and save the city. He remembers the look on the supervillains face, his mustache drooping to the side, and the way that the people had praised him, and smiled at him, expressed their gratitude through bright eyes full of tears.
“And the city?”
“The city will be fine.” He smiles, “I promise.”
He opens his mouth to protest, because he doesn’t want to leave the city for a break.
“He’ll be there.” A superhero interrupts, before Mark can cover his mouth. It’s a member of moonwalk, and he’s not really sure who is under the golden mask, but he does know the superhero as Phoenix, one of the more talented manipulators of fire in the world, and he can only imagine how he found out about this feeling of his, but he has a suspicion that elementals are bad at keeping their mouths shut, “The boy you like, in physics and elementals.”
He does not like the way that his teacher of physics and elementals nods.
He might be in love.
But does he like Lee Donghyuck?
“Okay.” He says, a little too fast, “I’m going.”
“Oh, okay,” Taeyong responds, a little too slow, “You’ll be leaving on Friday.”
He doesn’t walk out of the building.
He opens the windows and flies to the nearest shopping mall.
Jaemin is seated at the back of the bus, his legs folded in the cramped space.
He had promised to help out Jeno with his kinetics homework and agreed to join him in the try-outs for the rugby team, for moral support. He doesn’t know why he needs the support when he can throw the ball at a velocity that will break the ball, the glove, the stick, the net and sometimes, the person catching the ball, but he agrees, nonetheless, because as much as he wants to be alone with Lee Donghyuck, he needs someone to pick up his dead body after the encounter is over. And maybe he should be with Jeno so that he doesn’t end up breaking someone’s arm.
“This is so exciting,” Jeno says, pressing his face against the window. “I’ve never been camping.”
He’s never been camping before, not really. There was one mission when he had to stake out in the woods, waiting for the criminal to change back into a human before he was apprehended, but it doesn’t really count, not when he waited for a total of thirty minutes, preceded to uproot the trees, tear apart the cave, and take a brown bear back to the organization. He’s not really the superhero for stakeouts, anyways.
“Well, yeah, I guess we’ve never had the chance,” Jeno leans back on the seat, shuffling around in his pockets before he pulls out a battered compass, tapping on the plastic, and trying to point the needle in any other direction than one of the greatest superheroes in the country, “So, what’s the plan for you and the boy in physics and elementals?”
He doesn’t have a plan.
The needle stops moving.
He doesn’t have a plan in his mind, not when the doors to the bus open, and he can make out soft, brown hair, covered by a small, baseball cap, that makes him wonder how much it would cost to buy all the hats in the world and give them to him. It’s the boy of his dreams, the boy he might be in love with, and definitely likes, the talk of the organization, Donghyuck Lee, walking down the aisles of the bus with his dark eyes and his long legs. There’s a sucker in his mouth, and he pops out with a loud sound, and he can catch the flash of an orange tongue.
Donghyuck nods at him, waving his sucker.
Then he does something very problematic, he starts coming towards them.
He’s a superhero, but when he looks at him, he doesn’t really feel super, he feels really small.
He swallows his fear, and responds,
Donghyuck is staring down at him, and he feels like he could pass out, because he isn’t wearing eyeliner, or eyeshadow, or the faint blush that sparkles on his cheeks, that would make him look out of his world, this world, but his eyes are bright, so bright under the curve of his cap, and his skin looks soft under the warm sunlight. He looks so real, so close, almost as if he were in front of him.
“Who’s your friend?” Donghyuck gestures at Jeno with his sucker, and he doesn’t look away.
He doesn’t think there is anything that could compare to the sight of Lee Donghyuck in a soft, white sweater, the long sleeves rolled up to his wrists, tucked into a pale shade of cuffed jeans, because he looks so domestic, so domestic, that it makes his heart hurt and his head pound. His word of the day is soft, and his boy of the day, of the month, of the year and forever is Lee Donghyuck and he doesn’t think that will ever change.
He doesn’t respond, and Jeno smiles.
“I’m Jeno.” He says, nudging his side. “I’m a telekinetic too.”
Donghyuck must be being polite, but he smiles, only a small thing, and it’s really quite dangerous.
He says that, and then he sits in the seat diagonal from them, brushing his shoulders and hushing in conversation with a boy that he doesn’t recognize from any of his classes.
He turns to Jeno, who looks a little shaken.
“He is cute.” Jeno confesses, tapping on the cover of the compass, where the needle is pointed in a different direction, one that is diagonal from them, before breaking into an amused smile, “But you weren’t kidding when you said you can’t talk to him. I can’t believe the greatest superhero in the country is too tongue-tied to speak to his classmate - even if he is cute.”
He frowns, slumping into the seat. He can make almost make out his voice, talking in a low voice, but it’s hard to hear anything when there is a bustle of laugher around him, as the elementals shoot a beam of fire out of the window and blow a stream of water over their heads.
He thinks that this is going to be a long ride.
He’s never been camping.
And as he is hunched on the grass, staring at the ants that walk over his sneakers, carrying the crumbs from the granola bar that Jeno was chewing on, a teacher from the school explaining the schedule for the retreat, he wonders if this is what camping is all about, and why he, one of the greatest superheroes in the country, is stuck outside of the city, staring at ants.
“Why am I here?” He asks, flying an ant over a rock.
“Hm.” Jeno crunches on his bar, smiling. “I get it. It’s like a movie, and you’re trying to get the boy.”
Well, he is trying to get the boy.
Donghyuck sits a few feet away from him, talking with the boy that he sat with on the bus. He doesn’t know what they are talking about, but he wishes that he was the one beside him, whispering in his ear, holding his hand, taking him down the altar, exchanging vows, all dressed in white, but he might be getting ahead of himself. He doesn’t even know what his favorite color is – what if Lee Donghyuck doesn’t like white?
“I’ll help you out - don’t worry.” Jeno whispers, brushing away his crumbs, and pressing down his white bucket hat, “I’ll go ahead and distract his friend so you can get him alone. Take the chance to talk to him, or, at the very least, try and talk to him.”
The teacher says something, and the students are standing up, many of them walking over to the middle of the field, while the others are trailing off to the woods, arms linked together, laughing in conversation. He’s not looking at them, though, he’s looking at Donghyuck, and his friend, who has blonde hair and pale skin, and kind of looks like a psychic, if he had to guess. Of course, the only reason that he thinks that is because the many psychics in seventh sense like to dye their hair.
Jeno stumbles over to their side, a kind smile on his face. He says something, and they laugh.
He blinks and Mr. Nakamoto is in front of him, holding a stack of paper and pencils.
“I’m going to be leading the red team for capture-the-flag - you would be a great addition.” He says, and there isn’t really a question in his statement. Jaemin only leans to the side, staring at the boy with soft, brown hair, who stands up, stepping away from this friend to walk towards the woods.
“Sorry, but I’ll be, uh,” Jaemin is standing, taking a paper and reading what is written at the top, “Scavenger hunt.”
“Oh, okay, then.” Mr. Nakamoto says, and there is scepticism in his expression, “Have fun, then.”
He stumbles over the grass, following after him, and not without waving goodbye at Jeno, surrounded by a bunch of students, including Donghyuck’s friend, who is putting on a blue shirt.
There’s a rough path in the woods, and he takes the right.
He’s never been camping, and he’s never been out of the city. Not a trip, at least. He’s been in conferences all around the world, and then there are the times when he is sent to a famous mission in another country, although that doesn’t happen very often, not when he is one of the greatest superheroes in the country, and he is trademarked by the country. There are few other students in the words, flowers in their hands, but when they see him, they take another direction in the woods.
He follows Donghyuck, in what he thinks is a comfortable, not too dangerous, distance.
Donghyuck is leaning over the plants, a pencil in his mouth as he brushes his fingers against the leaves. He is writing something down on the paper that he balances on his knees, and Jaemin follows his movements, holding up his sheet of paper with the diagrams of plants and animals, a little crumpled from it’s stay in his shaking hands. He doesn’t have a pencil, so he scratches his finger on the sheet, pretending to write something. He is no psychic but has a feeling that the only student on this retreat that is really doing the scavenger hunt is Lee Donghyuck. The greatest threat in the world can’t be conventional, like all the other threats in the world, he supposes, because there is nothing conventional about Lee Donghyuck.
He keeps walking, deeper into the woods.
And deeper in the woods, the path gets muddier.
And the muddier the path, the dirtier his shoes become, staining a shade of brown.
Donghyuck crouches down, staring at a pink flower.
He hides behind a tree, sighing.
“You think this is a snapdragon or a toadflax?”
“Huh,” He starts, peering out from the tree that he thought made a good cover, “Oh, uh,” He takes another look at the flower and comes to the conclusion that he has no idea what he is looking at, although, in all probability it has less to do with his general knowledge of botany and more to do with the fact that he can’t take his eyes away from Donghyuck, chewing on the end of the pencil, a brightness in his cheeks, and a twinkle in his eyes, “I have no idea.”
“Hm.” He hums, furrowing his brows in concentration.
It’s quiet in the woods, especially when there is nobody else.
Suddenly, he feels underdressed in his brand-new sneakers, now covered in dirt, his clean, blue jeans, his checkered button up of blue and white that he purchased from the mall after the attendant passed out when they say him walk out of the dressing room. He feels scared, and maybe, just maybe, a little insecure to in the same place, the same woods, the same plane of the world, with Lee Donghyuck.
But he doesn’t need to be scared.
He’s Jaemin Na, one of the greatest superheroes in the world.
He shakes out his hands, shakes out his head, building up his nerves, as steps forward, right into a tree branch.
He lets out a sound, an embarrassing sound, something like a combination of a shout and a scream, something that is surely not what a superhero should sound like, backing away from the uncomfortable sensation in his eyes. From his other eye, he can make out the outline of Donghyuck walking over to him.
He can feel his face heating up, a blush rising on his cheeks.
He supposes there are some things in the world that do not change - the third law of motion is that for every action, there is an equal and opposite action, the capitol of Sweden is Stockholm, and Donghyuck is never going to think he’s cool. He supposes that the only positive in this situation is that there is something in his good eye, which means he can’t really see what kind of face Donghyuck is making.
There is a touch on his shoulders, that makes him stop breathing.
“Open your eyes,” Donghyuck says, and how can he refuse.
He presses his hand on his shoulder, with another coming to reach for his face, as he blows into his eye.
He takes it back. He really wants to see what kind of face Donghyuck is making.
He blinks, and blinks, and then blinks, because Donghyuck is leaning forward, a little too close for his restless heart, with his dark eyes widened in concern. It is a little close, because he can make out the constellation of moles that are on his face, on his cheeks, under his eyes, and dipping down to his neck, and if that wasn’t enough to make him combust, there is the lightest smudge of color on his mouth, painting his lips in a shade of pink.
“Wow,” He breaths out, his mouth falling open.
Donghyuck stares at him, his eyes wide, and it looks like he wants to say something.
But there’s a rumble in the woods as a group of kids in blue run through the woods, followed by a crackling in the sky as a small, moving cloud, with a torrent of rain falling down the area.
The rain doesn’t fall over them.
Donghyuck raises his hand, blinking up at the motionless cloud.
“Does this happen a lot?” He asks, a teasing hum in his voice.
No, he thinks.
“Yes.” He answers, trying not to look at his mouth.
“Hm,” Donghyuck smiles, “That’s funny.”
Maybe there is a problem.
He tries to smile back, but he can’t stop looking at his mouth.
There’s a whistle in the air, and there is a stick, or something like a stick, flying through the air. It’s just about to nick the side of his face, but he blinks, and it stops, a breath away from his skin.
“Oh, sorry,” Jeno says, appearing out of the woods. His face is covered in blue paint, decorating the bridge of his nose and striped across his cheeks to represent the team he is in. He doubts that the paint would be any help in camouflaging him, especially when he is throwing rocks and sticks around the forest at a speed without any sound.
The boy behind him has light blonde hair, almost platinum blonde, that is streaked with pink, or maybe it’s blue, it’s hard to tell when the sun is reaching his eyes. He has the strangest of eyes, because he swears that he can see geometrical shapes in the sheen of black, and it reminds him of the things that he learns in physics and elementals, something like grids, angles, and electricity. A tactical ability, not a psychic ability.
“I told you to watch for the wind,” He is frowning, pushing his shoulders against Jeno, before he turns to them, or more specifically, he turns to Donghyuck, walking over to him with an effortlessness that he could only dream about, “Donghyuck, can you guard the flag for a moment?”
Jaemin stares at the stick in the air and notices the blue flag that hangs from the other end.
“Renjun, I’m not playing.” Donghyuck says, bending over to pick up his discarded pencil and paper. He slides the pencil behind his ear, sparing a glance in his direction, and it looks like he wants to say something.
He opens his mouth, and then he closes, chewing on the bottom of his mouth.
And he watches.
And he watches.
And watches, as a student is running through the woods, heading for Donghyuck. But his eyes are wavering, and there is no moment for him to step in, or maybe there is no moment in his head other than the shape of Donghyuck’s mouth, the curve of his smile, the sound of his voice.
They don’t crash into each other, because Donghyuck is lowering his head, moving away from the reaching hands, and then he’s twisting around their body, his legs somehow making it around the student’s neck, and pushing them onto the ground.
The fire that is spilling from an open mouth is extinguished in the grass, their protests muffled.
Donghyuck is seated on their back. He's stretching out his arms, his brown hair ruffled, captured by the sun and framing his face like a halo, the pencil that had been behind his ear having fallen off, rolling on the ground. There’s a languid expression on his face, almost tired, with his eyes blinking, soft and slow, dark and dangerous, and he would be lying to say that he didn’t find Donghyuck overwhelming an opponent to be very attractive.
“Wait, what the heck just happened?” Jeno’s mouth hangs open, giving a voice to his thoughts.
He sighs, adoringly.
He doesn’t know.
But he does know one thing.
He’s definitely in love with Lee Donghyuck.
The trees fall down around them.
Jaemin’s can’t sleep.
The teachers had reprimanded him, or, tried to reprimand him about what happened to the woods. Mr. Nakamoto, for one, wasn’t mad at him for displacing the trees, because his team was able to find the flag that was hidden in the forest and win capture-the-flag, so there is that. The other teachers, especially those that he saw at the organization, only smiled at him, musing about the adventures of the heart.
He has a problem.
He can’t stop thinking about the smile on his face, only a small smile, that had his eyes crinkling and his cheeks raising, in the prettiest smile he has ever seen, and then when he reached around him, if only to stop his head from breaking under the mass of a tree, he had his arm around his waist, that was so warm, and so soft, and made him feel like he was on top of the world, if only for a moment.
He has another problem.
Donghyuck probably doesn’t like him.
He rolls over, shoving his face into his pillow.
There’s a creak of floorboards in the dark of the cabin, and then a quiet voice.
“I can’t sleep.”
He turns his head, his heart drumming in his chest, as he stares at Donghyuck in his pajamas. He should not be this attractive, this beautiful, this lovely, in an oversized shirt that hangs above his knees, a cartoon character on the front, and a pair of basketball shorts, but his chest hurts anyways, because Donghyuck would look good in anything and everything, and he would fall in love with him all over again.
Donghyuck turns his head, blinking at him.
“Want to get some air?”
He’s never been faster, as he kicks away his blanket, and follows him.
He’s not thinking.
He hasn’t been able to think since he met Lee Donghyuck.
All he knows is that he is sitting on the front porch of the cabin, the breeze of the wind a little too cold, the edges of the wood a little too sharp, the stars in the sky a little too bright, the boy beside him a little too real, much too real for this to be a dream.
He can’t really see anything in the night, and Jaemin breathes out all the words that are weighing on his chest, that want to escape and run to the boy he loves.
“I’m a Gemini.” Donghyuck says, and he almost doesn’t hear him.
Donghyuck is looking at the stars, and he’s looking at Donghyuck, and he can’t look away from the sheen of his dark eyes under the night sky, and the part of his mouth, where a curl of mist billows out with the softness of his exhale. There must a thousand stars in the sky, scattered across the blue and black, showering down on them, and he doesn’t know their names, but he does know one name – Lee Donghyuck, the greatest threat to the world.
“Oh,” He hushes, and the whisper of crickets is in the air, “Okay.”
“I like camping. I like looking at the stars and I’m the captain of the rugby team. I have a twin sister and two little brothers. My favorite season is summer, and I like to eat pork, but I don’t like to eat it with garlic.”
Donghyuck is talking, with the moon in his eyes.
He wonders if it is a crime to steal the moon and give it to him.
He wonders why he’s wondering about that when he knows that it’s not a crime.
He wonders how hard it will be to steal the moon.
“What about you, Jaemin?” Donghyuck asks, blinking at him, slow and languid, “Who are you?”
Who is he?
He’s one of the greatest superheroes in the country, maybe in the world, and he’s loved by all people, respected by all superhumans, and his face is plastered across advertisements and billboards. He has been the representative of superheroes all around the world since he was in elementary school.
“Uh, I’m Jaemin. I’m an Leo, and,” He says, pressing his hands onto the wood of the creaking porch. His mouth opens and closes, but nothing comes out, because he doesn’t know what his favorite season is, and he doesn’t know if he likes camping or not, and he doesn’t know what he likes to eat, and especially when it includes garlic, “And I can tie my shoes under five seconds.”
A bird hoots in the distance.
Donghyuck blinks, staring at him in silence, before he breaks out in a rasp of laughter.
It’s only a low, stuttering sound, but there is a warmth that thunders down his frame.
Donghyuck laughs, holding his stomach as he presses his head of soft, brown hair on his shoulder. It’s only a small touch, and it’s only small laugh, but Jaemin gathers up all the sounds, the feelings, the memories, storing them in the deepest parts of his heart, and locking it with a key, because he doesn’t ever want to forget about the moment.
“I have to see that,” Donghyuck smiles, pressing against him, “That’s so funny.”
He blushes and can’t keep a warbling smile from his face.
“Should I bring my shoes?” He asks, even though the shoes are already flying towards him.
“Will you really?” Donghyuck blinks, and then nods, “Because yes, you should.”
He puts on his muddied sneakers, shaking out his hands.
“I’ll count you down.” He smiles, leaning forward with a twinkle in his eyes. “Ready?”
Jaemin nods to him, grabbing his laces.
“Done,” Jaemin smiles, all wide and charming, as he leans away from his tied shoes.
“No way,” Donghyuck smiles, and he looks so pretty, “You really are something, aren’t you, Nana – oh, can I call you that?”
Jaemin blinks. “Nana?”
“Yeah, like Jaemin – ah,” Donghyuck explains, and there is a faint blush on his cheeks. He’s never seen him like this before, illuminated by the moon, the honey of his skin touched with the shade of pink, the shy of his eyes as he blinks and blinks, peering at him through his dark lashes, “I think it’s cute.”
“I think you’re cute.”
“Oh.” Donghyuck says, and the blush on his face darkens, “Is that so?”
“I do.” He breathes out, and it feels like there is a weight that is lifted from his shoulders. He thinks he can make out the cabins across the field hovering in the air, but he supposes, that when you are in love, strange things will happen, things that are simply out of his control. “I think you’re really, really cute, Lee Donghyuck.”
But he doesn’t feel so scared when Donghyuck reaches for his hand.
Jaemin Na can do many things, but he can’t help falling in love.
He knows why he likes him.
No, why he loves him.
It’s because when Lee Donghyuck looks at him with his dark, twinkling eyes, he looks at him likes he’s another boy, like he isn’t one of the greatest superheroes in the country and doesn’t have to be one of the greatest superheroes in the country and no matter what, there is a promise in his eyes, dark and beautiful, that tells him that he will always look at him like he’s another boy.
His heart breaks, or something like that, because there is a wetness in his eyes.
He flushes in embarrassment, because there are tears running down his cheeks. He doesn’t have a rhyme or a reason for his tears, and he knows that if his agent saw him now, they would pass out, and then recommend a detox diet. And Donghyuck, the greatest threat to the world, doesn’t start, doesn’t laugh, doesn’t frown, he doesn’t say anything at all, as he brushes his hands under his eyes, wiping away his tears.
“I don’t even like sparkling water.”
“Me neither.” Donghyuck smiles, soft and languid.
And who is he, not to return the smile.
They sit on the porch, holding hands and staring at the stars, until a teacher, and his group of students, fall out of the cabin that was hanging in the sky and covering the moon.
Jaemin dangles his legs over the edge of the building, cracking open a can of coke.
There’s a familiar hand on his shoulder, as Donghyuck swings over and sits beside him. He has a plastic bag in his lap, filled with the treasures of the convenience store, and he digs through them with his painted nails, the shade of black, as he pushes through the honey chips and the chocolate pies, before pulling out a stack of gum.
“Truth or dare.” Jaemin smiles, wide and charming, maybe a little embarrassed.
“Huh,” Donghyuck blinks, pushing a stick of gum in his mouth, “Dare.”
“I dare you to go out with me.” He flushes, hiding his face in his hands.
“Nana,” Donghyuck says, pulling his hands to reveal an amused expression, a twinkle in his eyes, “We are going out.”
Jaemin blushes, and to hide his embarrassment and the shade of red that is reaching all the way to his ears, he stretches his arm around him, pulling him close as he brushes his face into the crook of Donghyuck’s neck. The criminals in front of them are suspended in the air, floating around, staring at them in silence. His phone his vibrating in his pocket, a message from somebody that is fond of electronics, but he ignores it, pressing closer to the greatest threat in the world, or his greatest threat in the world.