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can you tell me how to love?

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, “You have nine months. If you can’t incorporate elements of romance into your novels consider yourself out of a job.”

 

Baekhyun groans. Nine MONTHS?! 

 

Byun Baekhyun, twenty-seven years old, world-renowned author, has been out of touch with this concept called “love” for the majority of it. Sure, he knows platonic love, like what he feels after he wins a round of PUBG or when he finishes a novel he’s been working on. But romantic wise? He isn’t the most well versed in it. 

 

Now his editor and publishers want him to write a love story? Something about appealing to the masses and how people want happy endings and cliche plot lines to distract themselves from their everyday lives. 

 

Anyways, basically, asking Baekhyun to do the impossible. He doesn’t know anything about falling in love. 

 

✿✿✿

 

Get ready by 7 am, Go to the cafe owned by his best friends Kim Jongdae and Kim Minseok, stare at the blank, white document on his computer until it’s time to go home. Rinse and repeat. 

 

“Baekhyun, go home,” Jongdae says, slamming a plate of strawberry cake in front of Baekhyun.

 

“How dare you say that to your most loyal customer!” Baekhyun gasps. Listen, Baekhyun knows he’s been at this café for longer than normal every single day, but what’s Jongdae expecting? For him to be productive in his apartment by working on his novel instead of playing video games? Wrong. 

 

“You’ve been here for two hours now, and I’ll bet on all the strawberry cakes we have that you haven’t written a single word on your document,” Jongdae says, arms crossed and a look of disappointment across his face. 

 

Baekhyun gasps. How rude! “Whatever, Jongdae,” Baekhyun mumbles as he stuffs his strawberry cake in his mouth, not in the mood to talk about his lack of motivation and work ethic. 

 

Jongdae out of everyone should know how hard it is for Baekhyun to write about someone falling in love. Especially after--

 

“Listen, why don’t you just tell your editor that you refuse to write about romance?”

 

“I wish I could, but it’s not that easy.”

 

After a couple more back and forth conversations with Jongdae, he’s finally left alone. The soft murmur of the 7 am atmosphere was replaced with loud chatter and clinking forks representing that the 9 am Sunday breakfast rush was finally here. Baekhyun takes this time to settle down and really take in the sights and the sounds that the cafe has to offer. The large glass windows allow for the natural sunlight to come in, illuminating the cafe space with shades of yellow. Wood-finished tables were scattered across the open space of the cafe, while fairy lights accompanied by hanging Edison light bulbs were placed corresponding to the placement of tables. Brick walls and wooden floors finish off the rustic and hobbit hole feels that the cafe radiates.

 

Baekhyun turns his attention back onto his computer screen. Jongdae’s right. He’s been staring at this computer screen without a single word written on the document for hours . Baekhyun pouts. “ This has GOT to be the worst case of writer’s block.” He thinks to himself. 

 

“What’s got you down in the dumps?” A deep voice interrupts his thoughts. 

 

“Nothing that concerns you,” Baekhyun mumbles under his breath, annoyed at the fact that he can’t write a SINGLE word, hoping that the voice can leave him alone to sulk.

 

“Ouch! Just asking a question.” The voice says, playful with a bit of hurt in the statement. 

 

Baekhyun’s eyes flicker up and what he sees (no exaggeration) is probably the most attractive man he’s ever seen? With his hair swept back, in a blue button-up, and grey slacks, how does someone look THAT good going to Sunday breakfast? Scratch that. THE MOST attractive man Baekhyun has ever seen. 

 

Even more attractive than--

 

“Anyways,” Mysterious and handsome stranger states, interrupting his thoughts, “You look like you need this.” He says as he slides a plate of strawberry pancakes in front of Baekhyun. 

 

“Thanks, I guess,” Baekhyun responds and continues to work on brainstorming his non-existing plotline.

 

“You’re welcome!” The mysterious and handsome stranger replies as he sits down in front of Baekhyun. “I always see you here with your face glued to the screen, whatcha working on that’s got you so invested?”

 

“Just my new novel,” Baekhyun sighs, caving into the question. He might as well entertain himself if he’s not gonna do ANY work.  

 

“Ooh, you’re an artistic guy!” 

 

Baekhyun looks up from his computer screen at this point. Why is this guy so invested? He asks himself as his eyes meet with a pair of excited, lively ones. 

 

“I’m a bit of an artist myself,” the mysterious and handsome stranger states as he sits back in his chair. “Park Chanyeol, I’m a composer for MS Entertainment down the street.”

 

Baekhyun whistles. MS Entertainment is one of the biggest entertainment companies in Korea! What were the chances he runs into a composer from that company?! “Wow! MS Entertainment! You must be living the dream!”

 

“It gets me through the days, you know?” Chanyeol responds, shrugging his shoulders. 

 

Baekhyun, fascinated by Chanyeol’s life, continues to ask questions, wanting to know every single detail about this stranger that has decided to sit in front of him that fateful day.

 

✿✿✿

 

It becomes a weekly thing. Every Sunday morning, Chanyeol finds Baekhyun among the sea of breakfast-goers and shares a plate of strawberry pancakes to talk about how their week went. Chanyeol updates Baekhyun on the current tracks he’s working on, and Baekhyun updates Chanyeol on how little progress he’s making on his novel. 

 

Even Jongdae notices how often the two are hanging out. One day, Chanyeol arrives earlier than Baekhyun. and Chanyeol looks like an extremely lost puppy. 

 

“Looking for your boyfriend?” Chanyeol hears a voice say. 

 

Boyfriend? Chanyeol has never thought about that before. Why did he seem satisfied with that idea? 

 

“He texted me to tell you that he’s running a little late, but he’ll be here soon. God, you guys are a weird couple, how do you not even have each other’s numbers?” 

 

“W-we’re not dating?” Chanyeol stutters. He just sees Baekhyun as a friend, a good friend with the way their relationship is going. 

 

Jongdae raises his eyebrows with a confused look on his face. “Are you sure? I haven’t seen him this happy since--” 

 

“Chanyeol!” Almost as if on cue, Chanyeol turns and sees a happy and incredibly cute Baekhyun make his way to where he and Jongdae were standing.

 

“Sorry, I’m late!” Baekhyun explains. He takes in the sight of Chanyeol’s confused expression and Jongdae’s amused one. “I hope Jongdae wasn’t saying anything weird…” Baekhyun says.

 

“Not really he just-” Chanyeol starts to say when all of a sudden Jongdae interrupts them.

 

“Oi! You two lovebirds! Stop blocking that area! Here are your strawberry pancakes, now go find a seat!” Jongdae says to a blushing Baekhyun and Chanyeol.

 

Needless to say, numbers were exchanged that day. 

 

✿✿✿

 

Baekhyun will never say it, but the way that Chanyeol’s eyes light up whenever he’s explaining something he’s extremely passionate about or how Chanyeol undividedly gives Baekhyun his attention when he’s talking is something that Baekhyun finds extremely comforting. The moment that Chanyeol walks into the room Baekhyun can feel the calming aura and energy that Chanyeol radiates every time they meet. 

 

Chanyeol will never admit it, but Sunday mornings are his favorite thing, and he always looks forward to it. The sassy, grumpy Baekhyun is a change of pace from the other people in his life. The way his eyes crinkle whenever Chanyeol says something funny would be forever etched into his mind.

 

Platonic soulmates, they would say. Just a friendship, they say, ignoring and pushing away the underlying feelings as much as they can. 

 

✿✿✿

 

After the millionth rant about how he can’t figure out what direction he wants his novel to go, Chanyeol finally asks “What’s even the concept for this novel?”

 

Baekhyun groans, “I thought I’ve told you a million times!”

 

“No! You just keep telling me about your editor and how he’s pissing you off and how you can’t get your characters to do what you want them to do which doesn’t make sense considering you’re the author of the novel! I would know, I always listen to everything you say!” Chanyeol exclaims.

 

Baekhyun sighs and resigns. Chanyeol is right, in the short amount of time they’ve been friends, he knows that Chanyeol really does remember everything Baekhyun says. “You’ve read my stuff, you know I mostly write action and horror novels, but now my editors want me to write something that has romance elements in it!”

 

Chanyeol looks amused. “You? Writing a love story? You’re qualified to write about a topic like that?” 

 

“Hey! What’s that supposed to mean!?” Baekhyun says as he slaps Chanyeol. 

 

“Ow! I’m just saying! Have you ever even been in love?” Chanyeol questions, rubbing over the spot where Baekhyun previously hit him

 

“I-uh…” Baekhyun says, shrinking back to his seat. Does he really wanna tell Chanyeol that story? About the person he’s tried so hard to forget? However, before Baekhyun could make that decision, Chanyeol cut him off. 

 

“No? Seriously?” Chanyeol says with a bewildered expression. 

 

“I… have… but… I don’t think it’s worth it.” Baekhyun answers. It’s a vague answer and gets the point across.

 

Chanyeol shuts his mouth, a hardened, thoughtful look across his face. It kinda freaks Baekhyun out.

 

“Hey!” Baekhyun says, hitting Chanyeol once again. “What’s got you so deep in thought?” 

 

“Maybe it’s time,” Chanyeol mutters.

 

“Huh? Time for what?”

 

“Time that someone shows you what love is really like.”

 

✿✿✿

 

Baekhyun’s in shock. Eyes widened, mouth open, hands trembling, the works. Did he HEAR that correctly?

 

“Chanyeol... What the HECK does that mean?” Baekhyun states while Chanyeol rapidly taps on his phone.

 

“I’ll make you a deal,” Chanyeol states the moment he puts his phone down. Their eyes meet once again, Chanyeol’s blazed ones meeting Baekhyun’s widened ones. “I’ll help you write your novel! 

 

“What??? How?????” Baekhyun questions.  

 

“This is perfect!” Chanyeol exclaims, abruptly standing from his chair. “Just be ready on Sunday!” 

 

Chanyeol runs out of the cafe, leaving an extremely confused yet intrigued Baekhyun with half-eaten strawberry pancakes in front of him. 

 

✿✿✿

 

“Chanyeol, where are we going?” Baekhyun groans. Chanyeol texted Baekhyun that they would not be having Sunday breakfast, but dinner instead, and to meet him at the cafe around 7 pm. Chanyeol was already waiting outside the cafe when Baekhyun arrived. When he first laid eyes on Chanyeol, he was… confused? How dare Chanyeol looks handsome in a simple pair of jeans and hoodie! His hair wasn’t styled that day which made him look even more like a puppy! Who gave him the right? Why did he start looking at Chanyeol this way? 

 

“Just trust me!” Chanyeol shouts over his shoulder, intertwining his hands with Baekhyun as Chanyeol drags him through the streets of Seoul. 

 

Baekhyun looks around, taking in his surroundings. “Seoul looks pretty today,” He mumbles. Bright neon signs of stores surrounding the couple illuminate the night sky, entrancing Baekhyun into a different world. The smell of tteokbokki wafts through the air as they make their way through the Gwangjang Market, and the laughter of children and the chatter of different people fill the otherwise silent night.  

 

“Yeah, but not as pretty as you,” Baekhyun hears. He whips his head to look at Chanyeol, heart pounding. What was that??????

 

“Ah ya! What was that for!” He says, hitting Chanyeol once again.

 

“Ow! Stop! I’m just saying! You look really pretty today!”

 

“Sshh! Stop saying that!” Baekhyun groans, pulling on Chanyeol’s hand to stop him from moving any more than he already has. “Can you please tell me where we’re going!?” 

 

Chanyeol sighs as he looks around. He spots an empty table and ushers Baekhyun to sit. 

 

“Stay here, let me get you something to eat.” 

 

“Wait! At least let me pay-”

 

“No need! I’m the one who asked you out anyway.”

 

That’s what triggered Baekhyun’s alarm bells in his head. Faint, but it’s there nonetheless. A date? Does Chanyeol think this is a date?

 

Chanyeol comes back with a plate of mung bean pancakes, ready to tell Baekhyun his master plan. “So--”

 

“Mung bean pancakes? I feel like the only thing we eat when we’re together are pancakes huh?” 

 

“Sshh, let me tell you the plan,” Chanyeol starts, shoving a forkful of pancakes into Baekhyun’s mouth. “So, my sister is getting married and my parents have been pestering me to get a date.”

 

“...Okay… what does this have to do with me…” 

 

“So you, because you’re such a good friend who’s near and dear to my heart, will accompany me to said wedding. Don’t worry, the wedding isn’t until two months from now, but until then, I’ll take you on dates and make you fall in love with me!!!!!” Chanyeol beamed. 

 

Okay… the alarm bells are on full blast. Baekhyun leans back, hears the creak of his chair. The lamp posts above Chanyeol’s head seem brighter than before. Has Chanyeol’s hair always been so fluffy? What’s happening? A date? Since when was this a date? /I/ said /yes/ to a /date/???????? 

 

Chanyeol notices Baekhyun's lack of response and alarmed face when he starts to panic. It wasn’t his intention to make Baekhyun feel uncomfortable!

 

“But! It’s okay if you don’t wanna do this! I’m sorry for rushing into things without asking you first, I just hated seeing you struggle with your novel so much that I wanted to help any way I can!” Chanyeol blurted. 

 

Baekhyun snaps out of his freakout to see a panicked expression on Chanyeol’s face. 

 

Aw, he looks kinda cute- oh no Baekhyun don’t you dare. 

 

“Aw, Chanyeollie,” Baekhyun mutters as he cups Chanyeol’s face, “You’re too cute.”

 

Chanyeol’s panicked face shifts to a relieved one. He grabs Baekhyun’s hand and pulls it into his. “Yeah… but not as cute as you.”

 

✿✿✿

 

Chanyeol tells Baekhyun about this “awesome” date he has planned. Knowing they both have a love of video games, Chanyeol wanted to bring Baekhyun to an arcade to show off his awesome video game skills. As they entered the arcade, the clink of the pinball machines and the winning sounds of the arcade games welcomed them in, awakening their inner competitive and childlike spirits. 

 

“Let’s play this one!” Baekhyun exclaims, dragging Chanyeol along to the Dance Dance Revolution game. Unfortunately for Baekhyun, Chanyeol seemed to be a master at DDR and beat Baekhyun at every single song they did. 

 

Baekhyun takes Chanyeol to basketball shooting games where he loses to Chanyeol yet again. How was Baekhyun supposed to know that Chanyeol played basketball on a daily basis?! Where does he even find the time for that?!

 

“Aw, good game Baekhyunnie,” Chanyeol giggled as they finished their last song.

 

Exhausted but determined, Baekhyun takes Chanyeol’s hand once again and stomps over to the first-person shooter games. “There’s no way you can beat me at this game, I play PUBG all the time!!!” Baekhyun pouts. There’s no way Chanyeol can be good at everything… right?

 

...Well, unfortunately for Baekhyun…

 

“I can’t believe you beat me at every game!” Baekhyun whined. 

 

“You’re adorable when you’re angry.” 

 

Baekhyun looks at Chanyeol with the most scandalous look Chanyeol has ever seen. 

 

“Don’t you dare pull that on me Park!” Baekhyun seethes. 

 

“Aw, Park? What happened to Chanyeollie?” 

 

“In your dreams!” Baekhyun says walking away from Chanyeol. 

 

Once again, unfortunately for Baekhyun, Chanyeol is able to catch up to him with his long strides against Baekhyun’s short ones.

 

“Aw, Baek, I’ll treat you out to some ice cream… strawberry ice cream…” 

 

Damn Park Chanyeol and his ability to know exactly what Baekhyun wants.

 

“...Fine.” 

 

✿✿✿

 

After the first date, the Sunday breakfasts continued like clockwork with the occasional hangouts outside the cafe, you know, when they missed each other too much and couldn’t wait seven days to see each other again. Chanyeol insisted on paying for all strawberry pancakes they ate together in which Baekhyun responded with an ‘oh no don’t you dare look, I am an independent human of society who can pay for my own meals thank you very much’ look.

 

Chanyeol would update Baekhyun on how he’s writing and composing a song for someone who means a lot to him while Baekhyun tells Chanyeol how the two main characters in the story are in a fake relationship in order to gain more insight into the enemy team. 

 

With every Sunday meeting, Baekhyun feels himself understanding Park Chanyeol more and more. Contrary to his strong facial features and intimidating height, Chanyeol is really just a soft-hearted individual who should be protected. He’ll do anything to make Baekhyun smile, even though he’d look like an idiot doing it. 

 

With every Sunday meeting, Chanyeol finds himself becoming more and more intrigued with Byun Baekhyun. He really enjoys seeing and making Baekhyun smile, all the more knowing that he’s the reason behind it. Baekhyun’s puppy-like energy radiates off of him, making Chanyeol all the happier.

 

Soulmates, they would say. They were destined to meet and destined to become friends, they say. 

 

✿✿✿

 

“Merry Christmas Baekhyunnie!” Chanyeol exclaims, waving his hands as he sees Baekhyun making his way to the cafe.

 

“Ah, Merry Christmas Chanyeol-ah!” Baekhyun responds back as Chanyeol wraps him in an embrace. 

 

Their second formal outing rolled around Christmas time, and Chanyeol made a reminder in his head that Baekhyun wanted to see the lights around Seoul. They were headed toward Myeongdong, the local shopping district known for their Christmas lights display and shopping. 

 

“W-Wait! I got you a present!” Chanyeol stammers, giving a wrapped box to Baekhyun.

 

“Aw, but I didn’t get you anything!” Baekhyun groaned. 

 

“Ah, never mind that! Being with you is a present enough.” Chanyeol beams. 

 

Baekhyun can’t help but blush. “Oh shut up,” Baekhyun half-smiled.

 

“Come on! I’ve got lots of things planned for us today!” 

 

The first snow has fallen upon Seoul, covering the barren trees. The Christmas lights scattered throughout Myeongdong help with the holiday ambiance and the spirit that the two of them have honestly been lacking. 

 

“Wow...” Baekhyun sighs, eyes reflecting the sparkle of his surroundings. The display of lights along the street takes his breath away. “Yeol look! Isn’t it gorgeous?! I’m so glad I got to see the lights with you this year!”

 

“...I’m glad I met you.” Chanyeol blurts out. 

 

It seems like they’re both surprised by Chanyeol’s outburst as Baekhyun’s eyes widen and Chanyeol clasps his hands over his mouth. Realizing what he said, Chanyeol slowly takes his hands off his mouth. Flashing his megawatt smile, Chanyeol chuckles, takes Baekhyun’s hands, and intertwines it with his. 

 

“You’re an important person to me Baekhyunnie, I’m so lucky that I got to know you. I don’t think you realize how much you mean to me.” Chanyeol beams.

 

Baekhyun steps out of Chanyeol’s hold, turning his eyes down and away from Chanyeol’s piercing ones. 


“Haha… What are you saying…” Baekhyun sputters, 

 

Chanyeol laughs. “No need to be embarrassed,” Chanyeol says, ruffling Baekhyun’s hair, intertwining their hands once again. “It’s just the truth.” 

 

✿✿✿

 

The two spend the rest of their night shopping while discussing their favorite movies and sharing childhood stories, anything that they could come up in their heads. 

 

“Oh? You’re a black belt in Hapkido? Come on, punch me!” Chanyeol jokes.

 

“Seriously?”

 

“Seriously! You’re so tiny, I bet you won’t be able to do anything.”

 

...Needless to say Chanyeol won’t be teasing Baekhyun anytime soon.

 

Baekhyun continues to update Chanyeol about his progress on his novel.

 

“They have names now! One of them is Changbin and the other one is Hyunjin! Changbin’s the really annoying one who’s pushy but has a heart of gold and Hyunjin’s the one with really bad trust issues but that’s what makes him really good at his job!” 

 

Chanyeol tells Baekhyun that he decided that the song he’s writing is gonna be about one-sided, unrequited love and how someone deals with it.

 

The night ends with them drinking hot chocolate in Chanyeol’s apartment.

 

“Baek, it’s getting late! I’m not letting you go home at this hour! I’ll sleep on the couch, you can get the bed.”

 

“Are you crazy? I’m not sleeping on your bed! This is your apartment!” 

 

“I guess we’re gonna have to both sleep on the bed because there’s no way you’re sleeping on the couch!” 

 

“Ugh, fine!”

 

Chanyeol settled into bed before Baekhyun and was on the verge of knocking out when he felt the bed dip. 

 

“Good night Baek, I lo--”

 

Luckily for Chanyeol, he fell asleep before he could finish the sentence. 

 

✿✿✿

 

“You’ve been sitting with him for breakfast every single week, are you guys dating or something?” Minseok questions. 

 

Baekhyun’s eyes widened. “What? No! Yeol’s just helping me write my novel.” 

 

“Oh, his name is Yeol huh?”

 

“I mean Chanyeol!”

 

“Oh no, by all means call him by the cute pet names you have for each other. Right Baekhyunee?” Minseok says, waggling his eyebrows. 

 

“Oh s-shut up!” Baekhyun stammers. 

 

“No, but seriously, what is going on between you two? I’ve never seen you so happy, even with-”

 

“We’re just friends,” Baekhyun interjects, clenching his jaw. “He’s nice, he makes me happy, he cares for me. I don’t wanna ruin what we have. He’s a really really really good friend and I don’t wanna lose him.” 

 

Minseok sighs, “Baekhyun… you can’t let him control you. He’s long gone.”

 

“I can’t ‘Seok. Everything reminds me of him and I start thinking about everything that happened, and I just don’t wanna lose Chanyeol. He means too much to me.”

 

“Who means too much to you?” A voice interrupts. 

 

Baekhyun turns around and sees the one, the only, Park Chanyeol.

 

“You,” Baekhyun says, rubbing the back of his neck.

 

It takes a second for Chanyeol to realize what Baekhyun said. Meanwhile, Baekhyun breaks eye contact with him, nervously fiddling his fingers. “ Why did I say that?????” Baekhyun thinks. “ Now he’s gonna think I’m weird or something and I’m gonna lose him, SEE this is exactly the reason why-- ” 

 

Chanyeol’s eyes widened and lit up. He wraps his arms around Baekhyun’s shoulders and proceeds to tell Baekhyun about how his week went.

 

✿✿✿

 

“Huh? Yeol? Whatcha doing here? I thought we weren’t hanging out until later?” Baekhyun says after opening his apartment door to a very happy and cheerful Chanyeol. 

 

“I lied! We’re hanging out now! We’re gonna have a movie marathon and watch all the Disney movies and eat lots of snacks!!! I also brought some people over if you don’t mind.”

 

“Hi Baekhyun!” Jongdae and Minseok say simultaneously.

 

“Jongdae! Minseok! I’ve missed you guys! I feel like we’ve haven’t hung out in forever!” Baekhyun exclaims.

 

“Hey, it’s not our fault you keep spending time with your boyfriend!”

 

“We’re not dating!” Chanyeol and Baekhyun simultaneously say.

 

“Oh! Baek! This is Jongin and Kyungsoo! They’re my best friends, you know, besides you.” Chanyeol says, pointing to the two unfamiliar faces.

 

“Ew, are they always this gross?” The smaller of the two asks.

 

“Yup!” Jongdae and Minseok respond. 

 

“That one would be Kyungsoo, ignore him, he’s always grumpy, and the other taller one is Jongin.”

 

“Hello! It’s nice to finally meet you! Chanyeol’s told us so much about you!”

 

“Yeah, a bit too much actually,” Kyungsoo mutters.

 

The group decides to watch horror movies, as per the request of everyone BUT Chanyeol and Baekhyun, both knowing they won’t be able to handle it and sleep that night. 

 

After the (what feels like) millionth jumpscare, Baekhyun groans, wrapping his head with the blanket, covering his eyes. “Guys, why couldn’t you just pick something fun to watch! Like a Marvel movie or something!” 

 

“Marvel movies are lame! Go sit next to Chanyeol since you two are such scaredy cats!”

 

Baekhyun huffs and puffs and stomps to sit next to Chanyeol and wraps the blanket around both their shoulders.

 

“H-hi Baek…” Chanyeol mumbled, clearly scared due to the scenes of the movie. 

 

“I know, this sucks. I wish it was only the both of us.” Baekhyun pouts.

 

By the end of the night, the two are resting their head on each other, Baekhyun’s head on Chanyeol’s shoulders and Chanyeol’s head on top of Baekhyun’s, hands intertwined for everyone to see. 

 

“Jongdae! Post a picture so they see it when they wake up!” Minseok proposed. 

 

“Ah! Great idea!”

 

Little did they know what events they would set in motion. 

 

✿✿✿

 

“Hey.”

 

“I know.”

 

“You need to tell him.”

 

“I know.” 

 

“Your feelings are so obvious... I can’t believe he hasn’t picked up on it.” 

 

“Me neither.”

 

✿✿✿

 

“Baek…”

 

“What?”

 

“You NEED to tell him. He deserves to know. He’s your best friend, how can he not know about him ?”

 

“I know.”

 

✿✿✿

 

“I’ll pick you up at 12! Just bring your cute self!” Chanyeol reminds Baekhyun over the phone. 

 

It was finally the day of the wedding! Baekhyun, always dressing to impress, wears an all-blue suit with his hair parted in the middle. He looks at himself in the mirror and with a satisfied sigh, makes his way to the door. Chanyeol is standing there in an all-black suit to compliment Baekhyun’s blue one. 

 

“Wow…” Chanyeol sighs, “You look gorgeous.”

 

Cue the blushing Baekhyun! “Thank you...you don’t look that bad today either.”

 

The car ride was a nice, comfortable silence to the venue. Baekhyun looked out into the cool February afternoon. Winter was still in full effect, so the trees and ground had no presence of life, but nonetheless a beautiful scenery.

 

“Does your family know I’m coming?” Baekhyun asks Chanyeol, twiddling his fingers. The last thing he wants to do is impose on such an important event!

 

“Of course! They knew about it the moment I asked you to come.” Chanyeol responds. He glances over at Baekhyun who’s clearly in some sort of distress. 

 

“You’ll be fine,” Chanyeol reassures, grabbing Baekhyun’s hand and intertwines it in his. “There’s no way my family would hate you, just be your charming, adorable self.”

 

✿✿✿

 

The two pull up to a beautifully decorated church where the wedding is being held. They make their way into the church when Chanyeol sees some relatives and drags Baekhyun to say hi and to introduce him.

 

“Ah! Mom!” Chanyeol shouts to a middle-aged woman talking to a group of other middle-aged women. 

 

“This is Baekhyun! My b-” 

 

“Ah! Baekhyunnie!” Chanyeol’s mom exclaims. “It’s so nice to finally meet you! Chanyeol over here never stops talking about you! How he made a friend who’s very nice and a famous author!”

 

“Ah, Chanyeol talks too much, huh!” Baekhyun jokes. 

 

“Well, he didn’t lie, you are very cute! You guys make such a cute couple!” Chanyeol’s mom commented.

 

“Mom!” Chanyeol interjects, “I-” He started to say, turning to Baekhyun.

 

“Chanyeol is very nice to me, you raised a great man, Mrs. Park,” Baekhyun admits. 

 

“Oh honey, just call me Mom.” She says with a smirk. 

 

✿✿✿

 

Eventually, everyone found their seats and the ceremony began. After a few tear-filled vows were exchanged between his sister and the groom (and Chanyeol even though he won’t admit it) it was finally time for the reception! The ballroom was decorated with fairy lights weaved throughout the ceiling while white clothes originating at the center of the ceiling fan out to the corners of the ballroom.

 

“This kinda looks like…” 

 

“The cafe!” Chanyeol and Baekhyun say simultaneously.

 

As the night went on, party-goers would say that they were in their own little world. Whenever they would glance at the couple, they could see the loving expression plastered all over Chanyeol’s face whenever Baekhyun was telling him a story or how Baekhyun never left Chanyeol’s side. Wherever you saw Chanyeol, you would see Baekhyun as well. 

 

“Ah! That was so much fun!” Baekhyun exclaims as they walk into Baekhyun’s apartment. 

 

“I’m glad you had fun, everyone loved you… but I mean, how could they not?” Chanyeol teased. 

 

Maybe they were on a wedding high, maybe all the love in the air really got to them. But there they were, standing in the middle of Baekhyun’s kitchen, looking longingly in each other’s eyes. 

 

Chanyeol cups Baekhyun’s face looks down at his lips, and then up at his eyes again.

 

“Can I…?”

 

Baekhyun responds with a shy nod, and Chanyeol dips his head to connect his lips with Baekhyun’s.

 

✿✿✿

 

They don’t talk about the kiss. It was almost like it never happened. 

 

✿✿✿

 

Another Sunday breakfast rolls around, and Chanyeol and Baekhyun are sitting at their usual spots having their usual strawberry pancake breakfast. 

 

“How’s your novel coming along?” Chanyeol inquires.

 

“Really well! Surprisingly well actually. I think I understand what this whole “love” thing is supposed to work.” Baekhyun snickers, shoving a spoonful of strawberry pancakes into his mouth.

 

“Oh? Are you saying that my plan is working then?”

 

“I think so? I think the character Hyunjin is gonna be an emotionally closed-off guy, but Changbin works really hard to pretend that they’re actually a couple but ends up falling in love with Hyunjin.”

 

“Oh? Does Hyunjin like him back?”

 

“I.. don’t know… I haven’t gotten that far yet,” Baekhyun explained. “How ‘bout you? How’s your song going?” 

 

“Really well! Too well, my other musician friends think I have too much first-hand experience in this for it to not be real.”

 

“Aw, are you gonna let me hear it?”

 

“Maybe someday.”

 

✿✿✿

 

Baekhyun was getting ready for another date with Chanyeol when he heard his phone ring. Assuming it was Chanyeol, he didn’t look at the Caller ID. 

 

“Hey Yeol! I-”

 

‘Hi, Baekhyun.’ The voice from the other line says.

 

The color drains from Baekhyun’s face. That voice belongs to one person and one person only. The person Baekhyun spent years trying to forget. The person who, dare he says, ruined love for him.

 

“H-how did you-” Baekhyun stutters. He removed all traces of him, how could he have possibly found him?

 

‘You thought I forgot about you? Did you forget about me? Aw, don’t tell me it’s the latter, you’re gonna make my heart hurt..’ The voice interrupts. “I miss you, can we meet?”

 

“No!” Baekhyun choked, “I blocked all your numbers, there’s no way you would’ve been able to f-find me.”

 

“Aw, remember your little friend Jongdae? Turns out we have a lot of friends in common! Don’t forget Baekhyun. I was the only one who loved you, and the only one who will ever love you.”

 

✿✿✿

 

Baekhyun calls Jongdae that night, sobbing and in shambles. Jongdae made his way over to Baekhyun’s apartment to console him and called Chanyeol to let him know that Baekhyun wasn’t feeling well and he couldn’t make it to their date tonight.

 

“Oh, is he okay?” Chanyeol questioned, worrying about his friend.

 

“Uh, he will be… don’t worry about him, I’ll be taking care of him, so he’ll be okay.”

 

“Ah, I see, let me know if you guys need anything! Chanyeol suggested. 

 

“Will do. Thanks Chanyeol.” Jongdae responds, hanging up the phone.

 

Chanyeol can’t help to do anything but worry. Baekhyun usually isn’t like this, Chanyeol usually knows everything that’s going on in his life, down to what he had for dinner last night. So, is Chanyeol full of concern? More likely than you think. 

 

✿✿✿

 

It’s 2 am when Chanyeol hears a rapid knock at his door. When he opens it, he finds Jongdae carrying a barely conscious Baekhyun.

 

“Jongdae? Baekhyun? Woah, wait what happened?” Chanyeol exclaims when he sees Baekhyun stumbling into Chanyeol’s apartment. 

 

“It’s a celebration Chanyeollie!” Baekhyun slurs. 

 

Apparently, “taking care of Baekhyun” means going to a bar late at night and getting totally wasted. 

“Sorry! He wouldn’t go home, something about having to go to Chanyeollie’s house..” Jongdae explained. 

 

“Um, okay... Thanks Jongdae.” 

 

“He’ll be okay, just give him some water and he’ll be fine. I’m sorry I’m leaving him like this.” Jongdae scoffs. “I’m off, let me know if you need my help!”

 

“Bye…” Chanyeol mutters.

 

He carries Baekhyun bridal style to the couch in the living room. “Baek, you’re drunk. What happened? I thought you were sick? Do you need anything from me?”

 

Baekhyun giggles, ignoring Chanyeol’s worried pleas. “Isn’t it great! I feel so numb! I don’t feel anything! Jongdae and I went to the bar, and it was really fun! I drank to forget, there’s so much I wanna forget...” Baekhyun rambles on.

 

“Baekhyun… What happened?” Chanyeol sighs, giving a cup of water to Baekhyun. “Here, please drink this. It’ll help you feel better.” 

 

“Isn’t love a funny thing?” Baekhyun mutters, “I have this great guy who genuinely cares about me and doesn’t treat me like garbage, but here I am still not over my trash of an ex!” Baekhyun exclaims. “Remember when I said I didn’t believe in love?” He looks like Chanyeol with sorrowful eyes. “I dated this guy once. He wasn’t the nicest, cheated on me a couple of times, but I always took him back.” Baekhyun laughs, emotionless and sad. “You must think I’m pathetic, huh?” Baekhyun sobs, looking at Chanyeol with tear-filled eyes. 

 

“I don’t think you’re pathetic…” Chanyeol argued, ignoring the panging sensation he feels by his heart.

 

Baekhyun smiles, a smile that didn’t quite reach his eyes, a non-stop flow of tears from those eyes, “And that’s why you’re too good for me Chanyeollie.”

 

✿✿✿

 

It’s been two weeks since that conversation, and Baekhyun hasn’t seen or heard from Chanyeol in that span of time. The last morning that Baekhyun saw him, he didn’t remember much the night before, just that call from his ex which led him to cancel his date with Chanyeol and get drunk instead with Jongdae. He woke up to an emotionless Chanyeol and left right after the most awkward breakfast the two have ever shared. 

 

Chanyeol stopped showing up to Sunday breakfast, stopped responding to Baekhyun’s texts and calls like he disappeared off the face of the Earth.

 

“You haven’t heard from him?” Minseok asks.

 

“Nothing! I even called Jongin and Kyungsoo, and they said that they haven’t seen him either! I’m getting really worried ‘Seok.”

 

“I’m sure he’s fine, I’ll give you another strawberry cake, you’re getting wrinkles.” 

 

That was until he saw a familiar back walk out of the cafe. An almost too familiar back. He’s spent too much time with it, knowing exactly who it was. 

 

“Yeol!” No response. “Chanyeol!” Baekhyun shouts louder, running up to the individual and grabbing him by the sleeve. “Why are you ignoring me?”

 

Chanyeol turns around, his piercing gaze meeting with Baekhyun’s soft ones. 

 

“I love you.” Chanyeol declares. 

 

Baekhyun freezes. What? His heart stops, thoughts halt, hands shake. He peers his head to see if there was someone in front of Chanyeol, hoping that it was some slip of the tongue, maybe he was talking to someone else, maybe he can pretend that nothing happened. Because there’s no way someone as patient, caring, loving, and wonderful as Chanyeol could ever love someone like Baekhyun.

 

Instead, he’s met with eyes full of fire, full of love, and but a soft look Baekhyun is all but unfamiliar with. 

 

“I love you, Byun Baekhyun,” Chanyeol says with more conviction. 

 

“Yeol, wha-” Baekhyun sputters.

 

“I realized it-”

 

“N-no.” Baekhyun interrupts, his voice quivering. His head is spinning at this point. He shakes his head and is about to turn and walk away. Walk away from the person he trusted the most. 

 

“No?”

 

“Yeol, you can’t love me! I-I’m an emotional mess, I don’t know how to love, I’m the most flawed person yet! I’m abrasive and loud and--” Baekhyun starts to get overwhelmed. Chanyeol can’t . Chanyeol shouldn’t . Baekhyun sighs and starts again. Determined to get his point across. Chanyeol deserves better. Chanyeol deserves someone better than him. “Chanyeol, you deserve so much better than me. You’re so sweet and so patient with me that you deserve someone who does the same. You deserve so much better than me.” 

 

Chanyeol’s smile drops, replaced with fury and rage. Baekhyun can see his hands clench, his body going rigid. “Baekhyun, who are you to tell me who I do and don’t deserve?” 

 

“Chanyeol--”

 

“No, Baekhyun, I can’t accept this. I won’t accept this. Are you telling me these past months were a joke? That you didn’t feel what I was feeling? That the kiss meant nothing? You’re telling me that all this time was nothing to you? I was avoiding you because it physically pained me to see you that night. Crying over someone who didn’t treat you like you should’ve been treated. Someone who had my entire world in their hands, but yet treated you like a piece of garbage. Someone who didn’t see you as the treasure you are, someone who didn’t see how determined you are when you put your mind into something, or how cute you are when you’re angry because someone beat you at a video game or someone is teasing you, or how friendly you are for becoming friends with a random stranger who decided to sit at the same table as you on a crowded Sunday morning. 

 

Baekhyun can’t comprehend what Chanyeol is saying, let alone feeling. There’s just... No way that someone could possibly love him. 

 

“I- I don’t-- Chanyeol, I can’t!” Baekhyun snaps. “Look! I appreciate you taking me out and spending so much time with me, but you can’t get mad at me for not feeling the same way! You’re my best friend, my closest friend, and I am so incredibly thankful for you, but I just don’t feel the same way.” Baekhyun starts to feel the tears well up. Why did this have to be so complicated? Why did he have to be SO complicated?

 

Chanyeol’s face falls and resorts to a hardened look. Nothing like the sweet Chanyeol Baekhyun had gotten to know over the months.

 

“Okay, okay. I see. I guess it’s my fault for getting my hopes up. I’ll see you around.” Chanyeol chuckles, and turns to walk away from Baekhyun. 

 

And Baekhyun is left looking at the retreating figure, leaving him more confused than ever before.

 

✿✿✿

 

Four months pass since Baekhyun has last spoken to Chanyeol, the last time he’s heard his voice or his laugh or his stupid anecdotes about the random things that have been happening in his life. 

 

Four months since the confession.

 

“Baekhyun! I’m just calling to let you know that your novel was a smash hit! The action complete with the angst and sexual tension between the characters was perfect! It was interesting and I could feel what the characters were feeling! You really did your research on this huh? Anyways, you have your first book signing tomorrow at 12 pm, so make sure you look your best!” 

 

Baekhyun groans as he rolls over in bed. Baekhyun packed his bags and went to stay in Japan for a while. Told his friends and editors it’s so he gets more content for his book or something. In reality, he just...had to leave Seoul. Too many reminders. 

 

Throughout his time abroad, the only thing he was thinking was how much he wanted to tell Chanyeol everything. Tell Chanyeol about the really good katsu curry plate he had, how the waves on the beaches are huge, the really funny conversation he had with the cashier at the convenience store.

 

Baekhyun bitterly laughs. He loves Chanyeol. He just realized way too late. 

 

The plane ride back to Seoul was filled with thoughts about the five months that he spent with Chanyeol, every single week, every other day. How did he not notice? 

 

✿✿✿

 

Baekhyun’s book signing goes smoothly. Fans were saying how Hyunjin was stupid for not accepting Changbin’s confession when it was so obvious that Hyunjin felt the same way. 

 

That was until he heard a familiar voice. “That Changbin character, what was the inspiration for creating such a wonderful character?” 

 

Baekhyun’s head shoots up. No way. No way, no way.

 

“Um, I-” 

 

“And that Hyunjin character, he seemed to really love Changbin huh?”

 

This is your chance Byun Baekhyun, don’t mess it up .

 

“Yeah, he did. A shame he realized it too late.”

 

“Maybe... Not too late, thanks Mr. Byun!” Chanyeol says with a smile on his face, his smile reaching his eyes.

 

✿✿✿

 

Throughout the rest of the fansign, Baekhyun could only think of Chanyeol. Why was he here? What does he mean ‘it’s not too late’? He quickly exits the bookstore, and into the rainy streets, hoping to somehow, someway catch Chanyeol. Luckily, he didn’t have to look that far. 

 

“Chanyeol! What are you doing here?” Baekhyun questions the tall figure standing in front of him. 

 

“Waiting for you obviously.”

 

“What? Why? It’s raining! Go somewhere dry! You’re gonna get sick!” 

 

Chanyeol grabs Baekhyun by his hands, effectively dropping both their umbrellas. Baekhyun’s eyes widen, mouth agape. What is this kid trying to do? 

 

“I love you. I understand if you never wanna see me again, but I just had to see you one last time. I’m sorry for assuming your feelings, and I’m sorry for any pain I might have caused you.”

 

Baekhyun has never been more thankful for rain in his life. At least Chanyeol can’t see the tears that start to well up in his eyes.

 

“You d-dummy.” Baekhyun stutters. “You still love me?”

 

“I never stopped.” Chanyeol laughs. 

 

“Even though I ran away? Even though it took me so long to realize how I felt toward you? You’re still in love with a mess like me?”

 

Chanyeol didn’t even need to respond, Baekhyun could see it written on his face.

 

“I’m in love with you, Byun Baekhyun.”

 

“I’m in love with you too, Park Chanyeol.” 

 

✿✿✿

 

Epilogue

 

Sunday morning breakfasts turned into everyday breakfasts, weekly hangouts turned into everyday hangouts, confusing emotions turned into loving ones. 

 

“Hey, remember that song that I was working on?” Chanyeol asks Baekhyun as they were laying on the couch.

“Of course! The title was ‘Moon’ right?”

 

“It’s about you.”

 

“Yes, I figured you sappy giant, you always had a way with words.”