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should have known better

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The first incident happens on a Thursday evening, after a long day of photoshoots for their new album.

Wooyoung is tired enough that he could probably fall asleep with his clothes on, still not having washed off the makeup he’s wearing from the shoot. As usual, San had come straight to his room as soon as they’d arrived back at the dorms, but they’d drifted into comfortable silence a while ago, both of them exhausted by their long day.

“Wooyoung,” San says suddenly, prompting Wooyoung to blink open his eyes from where he’d been dozing off.

“Yeah?” he mumbles. He’s only just noticed that Yeosang isn’t in the room anymore, probably off to talk to one of the other members or maybe call his parents.

“Who do you think the shipper fans would assume tops between the two of us?”


No, seriously. What the fuck.

Wooyoung is so shocked by the question that he wonders if maybe he’d heard him wrong. Surely San wouldn’t have just asked him-

“The fuck kind of question is that?” he says.

“Come on, you know what I’m talking about,” San says as a reply, not at all perturbed by Wooyoung’s deadpan response.

Obviously Wooyoung knows what he’s talking about: their whole ‘Woosan’ gimmick, the exaggerated flirty banter whenever the two of them are on camera together, their not-so-secret looks that get the fans excited. He just doesn’t spend too much time thinking about what it all actually means; about the fact that there’s people out there who genuinely believe he and San are secretly in love, in a relationship, fucking each other, whatever.

“I dunno. Who cares?” Wooyoung says, because this conversation is making him feel weird in a way he never usually feels with San.

They’ve spent enough time together that not many topics of discussion are off the table. Wooyoung knows he can talk to San about anything; his insecurities, which female idols he thinks are hot, they’ve even discussed their favourite porn.

But talking about a scenario in which he and San would have sex and then trying to figure out who would top? Yeah, that’s fucking weird.

“Don’t be so boring. There’s no way the… you know, shippers, or whatever, haven’t wondered.”

Wooyoung is well aware of that – far more so he’d like to be, thanks to the time Yunho had been drunk and had decided to go on a Woosan forum for the laughs, reading the paragraphs upon paragraphs of mostly NSFW stories out loud to a mortified Wooyoung. A memory that he’d rather not revisit, which is why he very much does not want to be having this discussion right now.

But when San wants to talk about something, he’ll talk about it, so Wooyoung knows he has no choice but to entertain him if he wants this conversation to be over as soon as possible.

“I really don’t know. There’s probably different people who prefer each, uh, option,” Wooyoung says, feeling like all his internal organs are shrivelling up with discomfort as he says the words.

“Probably,” San’s expression is relaxed, like this is all just some joke to him.

“Yunho looked at a shipper forum once,” Wooyoung adds, not sure why he’s telling San this when they’ve never discussed it before and he’d been determined to not rehash the memory. “There’s a lot of people who think that I’d- um, that I-” he can’t finish the sentence. San definitely knows what he’d wanted to say. “Why do you wanna talk about this, anyway?”

“No reason, I was just curious,” San says. “Does it bother you, if people think you’d bottom?”

Holy fuck, this is the weirdest conversation Wooyoung has ever had in his entire life.

“Um, I don’t know. It’s just unrealistic,” he says, then flushes when he realises that it had sounded like he’d meant him bottoming for San was unrealistic rather than the entire premise of them having sex.

San raises an eyebrow. “Unrealistic?”

There’s something about the way he says it that prompts Wooyoung, against his better judgement, to ask, “You think I’d bottom for you? Hypothetically,” he adds quickly.

“Hypothetically, we’d do whatever we wanted, and it wouldn’t be any of the fans’ business.”

Wooyoung feels flushed and hot, this whole conversation is so weird and why are they still talking about this. “But you think fans assume that you’d top.”

San shrugs. “I don’t know what they assume. That’s why I asked you.”

“Well, my answer is that I think there’s a mixed verdict. But yeah, a lot think you’d top,” Wooyoung says, skin hot.

Before San can reply, the door opens and Yeosang comes in, looking as exhausted as Wooyoung feels. He suspiciously peers at their startled faces. “What are you guys talking about?”

“Nothing,” they both answer simultaneously, and Yeosang just rolls his eyes, clearly too tired to deal with them right now.

“I’m gonna head to sleep,” San says, standing up and stretching. “See you guys bright and early tomorrow. Don’t forget to wash your makeup off, Wooyoung. You won’t wanna mess up your skin when the comeback is so soon.”

“Yeah, definitely,” Wooyoung says, somehow dazed now that their conversation stopped abruptly. San doesn’t seem at all thrown off by the entire thing, so why is Wooyoung’s heart still beating this hard in his chest?

God, that was so weird. Now they’re done discussing it, though, and he can file this under the same category of unfortunate memories as Yunho reading him porn about himself with San, and try his best to forget about the whole thing.

The second incident happens a few days later, before Wooyoung’s been able to convince himself that talking to your best friend about who would top if you guys hypothetically decided to have sex is totally normal. Although, sure, the discussion had happened in regards to fan assumptions, it had felt like there had been more to it than merely that.

Wooyoung is definitely overthinking, but that’s what he does best.

Not just that conversation, too. He’s been overthinking every single one of his mannerisms, his behaviour around San and the other members. What is it about him that screams bottom – or, to others, top – and why were people talking about that in the first place? And, more importantly, why can’t he stop wondering which one has more accuracy?

He’s had sex before, when he’d had a secret kind-of-girlfriend during his trainee days, but that had been ages ago and since then life had just been too busy, the pressure of not getting caught more intense once he’d debuted.

And he’s always known San is attractive (obviously, since he has eyes), but he’d told himself that finding other guys handsome was just testament to how secure he is in his own masculinity. Even when they’d first moved in the dorms together and he couldn’t help but let his eyes linger on San’s bare torso whenever he came out of the shower wearing only a towel, heart in his throat and an intense wave of guilt washing over him.

Dance practice the last few days has been a nightmare, with Wooyoung constantly getting distracted by San’s precise hip thrusts in their choreography, and by his sleeveless shirt that completely bared his biceps and ribs and let Wooyoung watch the flexing of the muscles as he moved his arms in time with the beat of the music.

This is all because of that conversation. Now that the idea’s been planted in his mind, the more he tries to not think about it, the more his brain is fixated on what they’d discussed.

First, it had just been an extension of San’s question; who would top? Then he’d started wondering what it would be like either way, which had lead into extended fantasies about him and San staying behind after practice and fucking in the shitty showers next to the dance studio.

And maybe Wooyoung’s always been attracted to San, the touchiness they exhibit whenever they’re on camera together a little too easy, his lingering gazes that fans noticed on video not always completely intentional.

“Wooyoung? You good?”

Somebody snaps their fingers in front of Wooyoung’s face and he blinks, zoning back into his present surroundings. Right. He’s in the middle of dance practice, and everyone is staring at him.

And he’s been completely zoned out the past few minutes.

“What are you thinking about so intensely? You’ve barely been paying attention this whole practice,” San says, lowering his arm.

“Not true,” Wooyoung mumbles; a shitty retort, but he’s too flustered to come up with something better.

San rolls his eyes. “Okay, sure. Then you’d better prove it by focusing on the choreo, you completely blanked on us.”

Oh, right. He’d forgotten about the change in formation.

Fuck. Okay, you got this.

“Yeah, my bad. Sorry,” he says, running a hand through his hair and moving into the correct dance position.

The music resumes and Wooyoung does his best to concentrate on the choreography, keeping his eyes on his own form in the large mirror instead of letting his gaze stray to San. San, who’s wearing a sleeveless shirt again, who’s biting his lip at his own reflection, obviously testing which facial expression would make the fans go crazy.

But then San’s eyes flick to meet Wooyoung’s at the exact moment the choreography involves them thrusting their hips into the air.

Wooyoung’s mouth suddenly feel very dry.

His eyes snap away before he can mess up the choreography again, trying to ignore the fact that his heart is pounding in a way that has nothing to do with the physical exertion of dancing.

He knows he’s been extra on edge recently because their schedule has been so packed, and he’s not gotten much sleep. Not to mention the fact that he’s not had time to jerk off a single time the past week.

So, really, it’s not even his fault that he’s so easily distracted.

As if that isn’t enough, their new choreography is a so-called ‘sexy concept’, and Wooyoung’s been subject to San doing body rolls and thrusting and biting his lip during the dance, as well as apparently developing a sudden preference for wearing sleeveless shirts.

It seems like the universe is intent on making Wooyoung lose his mind. Because he really feels like he’s going crazy, not sure how to deal with this suddenly very intense sexual attraction to his best friend. So now he’s just overthinking everything he does.

At some point, when Wooyoung’s almost gotten himself into the zone of focus, a couple of staff members come by to check their progress. One of them says, “That’s great work, guys. I think we can call it a day.”

Wooyoung sighs in relief, glad that the torturous practice is finally over. He’s about to grab his belongings and head out when one of their dance instructors holds up his hand. “Wait a moment, San and Wooyoung, I’d like to talk to you?”

Wooyoung glances at San in confusion, who shrugs at him, indicating that he has no idea what’s going on either. The other members wave as they exit the studio; this isn’t out of the ordinary, and it’s pretty common for members to get individual feedback after practice.

Wooyoung just isn’t sure whether said feedback is going to be positive or negative. Probably negative, judging by his focus levels the past few days.

“So,” the instructor says when the three of them are the only people left in the room, “you know how I told you all that we’d been considering changing the beginning formation? Since we wanted to see what works best.”

They both nod, confused.

“Well, some of us staff members have been wondering if there’s any way we could… spice it up,” the instructor continues, waving his hand vaguely. “Like, you guys know a lot of the fans love the whole ‘Woosan’ thing, and fanservice is always great for publicity and making your fans happy. So, I’d like to work on developing a choreography that, uh, plays into that a little more.”

Wooyoung glances at San, who’s turned to look at him at the same time. San gives a shrug, as though saying ‘well, why not?’.

“What do you mean, exactly?” Wooyoung asks, breaking the eye contact and turning back to face the dance instructor.

“Nothing super intense, just a little something to make the fans happy. And since it’s right at the start, any non-fans watching will have their interest piqued. We were thinking that, if San steps out of the beginning formation towards you, that would lead on to the next formation really nicely.”

“So you just want him to… step out to me?” Wooyoung asks, confused.

“Well, first he steps out, then you can do something like intense eye contact and touching the backs of each other’s head before stepping away. It’ll look really nice on stage.”

Wooyoung doesn’t know why he feels so off-kilter. They’ve done way more intense stuff than this in the past – the fake love cover, for one – so this should be nothing out of the ordinary, but that had all been. Before.

“Sure, sounds good.” San says with a shrug.

“Yeah,” Wooyoung says, hoping he sounds as nonchalant as San.

“I have to leave now to sort out some other stuff, but if you guys can just run through that a few times now, to check the timing? Then tomorrow in practice we’ll go over it again and we can try adding it to the whole formation for the song.” The instructor is already collecting his papers, clearly in a hurry.

“Of course,” San says, polite as ever. “I don’t mind staying late.”

“Me neither,” Wooyoung says, which is true. He’s even pulled all-nighters on several occasions when he’d wanted to get the choreography just right. It’s more the whole staying-late-specifically-to-practice-fanservice-with-San part that he minds.

“Great, I knew I could count on the two of you,” the instructor gives them a thumbs up, walking towards the studio exit. “I’ll see you both tomorrow morning for practice!”

The door closes and Wooyoung turns to face San.

“This shouldn’t be hard, it’s basically the same as the other times we’ve done this sort of thing on stage,” San says, echoing Wooyoung’s earlier thoughts.

“Yeah,” Wooyoung mumbles, wondering what he’s supposed to do now that the mere presence of his best friend sets him on edge like this. Not in a bad way – he’s just trying really hard to not look at San’s bare arms as he turns around to play the song from the beginning on the stereo in the practice room.

“Okay, so I’ll just step out towards you like this-” San says, stepping towards Wooyoung in time with the music, “then we can look each other deep in the eye, or whatever.”

San leans in towards him, hand resting on the back of Wooyoung’s neck, but Wooyoung steps away a moment too soon, missing the beat of the music.

“Shit, sorry,” he mumbles, running a frustrated hand through his hair. “I don’t know what’s been wrong with me recently.”

“It’s okay, let’s just try again,” San says, setting the song back to the beginning.

But Wooyoung really can’t do this right now, pulse already hammering and everything in him rebelling at the idea of having to get all close up to San right now. And yeah, he’s a little turned on, which is so fucking embarrassing because literally all San had done was wear a sleeveless shirt and touch Wooyoung’s neck while staring into his eyes for like a second.

“Listen, I think we’ve got this,” Wooyoung says. “It’s like you said – we’ve done this hundreds of times before, let’s just wing it tomorrow in practice.”

During group practice this should all be easier, with all the other members and staff there as a distraction. Not just him and San, alone in the studio at night.

San looks apprehensive, but Wooyoung is already grabbing his belongings in a way he knows is too quick to seem casual about it, wanting to leave as soon as possible. “Wooyoung, I really think we ought to at least-”

“Nah, it’ll be fine,” Wooyoung says, picking up his bag. “We’ll probably be better if we get some extra rest instead. I’ve been way too exhausted, if we take it easy it’ll be way more beneficial than anything we can practice right now.”

He knows San can tell that this is out of character for him – he’s usually the definition of a perfectionist, would never be one to shirk on extra practice in favour of sleep. But he needs to get out of here, every nerve in his body tingling unpleasantly.

“If you say so,” San says hesitantly. “I’m gonna stay a little longer and run through some of the other stuff, but I’ll see you back at the dorms?”

“Yeah, see you later,” Wooyoung says, already leaving the practice hall.

He needs to come up with a better excuse for his weird behaviour, because the fact that he’d left so abruptly would already be enough to make San suspicious that something’s wrong. And his body is still tingling with the remnants of arousal, even though he’s no longer in San’s immediate presence.

This whole realisation that he wants to sleep with his best friend is incredibly inconvenient, and he really needs to think of some way to make it stop.

The minutes trickle by as Wooyoung waits for each member to finish showering, tapping his foot impatiently as he tries to focus on watching the video recordings of practice today, keeping his eyes on himself on the screen instead of San in his sleeveless shirt.

There’s a knock on his door, and both Wooyoung and Yeosang look up. “Shower’s free,” Seonghwa tells Wooyoung.

Fucking finally.

“Thanks,” he says, standing up and grabbing his towel off the hook. His body is still thrumming with tension and sexual frustration, and he’s been waiting all week for the chance to jack off. Maybe he’ll be less irritable when he isn’t so fucking horny.

He locks the door, leaning back against it in relief. “Finally,” he whispers to the empty bathroom.

He strips off his sweaty practice clothes and steps into the shower, letting the hot spray of water loosen his tense muscles. He spends about ten seconds shampooing his hair before he can’t stop himself from reaching down and wrapping his fist around his already half-hard cock.

Fuck yes.

He’s been sporting a semi all evening, and it feels so fucking good to finally touch himself that he has to clench his jaw to stop his groans from slipping out into the empty room. The walls in the dorm are paper-thin, and he doesn’t want to risk the other members overhearing him, even if all of them are kinda aware that everyone uses their shower timeslot for this sort of thing.

Water isn’t the best lube and the slide as Wooyoung jerks himself off isn’t super smooth, but he’s so far gone that he doesn’t give a fuck and this is the best he’s felt in days. His heavy breathing is hopefully disguised by the sound of running water from the shower, but at this point he’s too preoccupied to worry about that too much.

Images come to mind, unbidden, of San’s arms today during practice, the movement of his biceps as they flexed and unflexed during the choreography. Of San’s powerful hip thrusts, all that mouth-watering sexiness. The face-to-face part of the choreography, San so close that Wooyoung can almost picture what it would be like to close the distance between them and kiss.

Wooyoung’s head falls back against the tiled wall. His legs feel like they’re about to give out, partly because of how exhausted he is, but also because this is so good. Not making any noises is becoming difficult; he thinks maybe a few whimpers have slipped through, but he can’t be sure.

He’ll probably feel guilty, later, for thinking of his best friend at a time like this, but right now he just can’t stop imagining San pinning him down onto one of the benches in the practice room and fucking the soul out of him with those precisely timed hip thrusts.

He’s so close. Fuck.

The pressure builds in his abdomen, overwhelming and so fucking good after the stress of the past few days. This is exactly what he’d needed, all the tension in his muscles relaxing as he allows his body to slacken into the feeling of impending orgasm.

There’s a loud knock on the door, cutting through the relative quiet of the bathroom.

Wooyoung freezes, cock still hard and dripping in his hand.

“Get out, Wooyoung! Your time’s up,” San’s familiar and horrifically unwelcome voice sounds through the door.

Wooyoung stares at the closed door, stomach turning to ice. “No way,” he replies, glad that his voice is even. “That wasn’t fifteen minutes.”

“The managers said we have to take quicker showers today because of the early schedules tomorrow. Weren’t you paying attention?”

Wooyoung had not been paying attention. This is like some massive cosmic joke; the universe having a laugh at his expense.

“Give me two minutes,” he says. Two minutes should be long enough to orgasm and make sure all his come is washed down the drain. He feels so on-edge that he could probably get himself off with one jerk of his wrist.

“Fine,” San says, voice amused. “But only because I’m such a nice and caring friend. I’ll wait here, so hurry.”

Wooyoung swallows the bitter feeling in his throat, still staring at the locked door in horror. He’s so hard his dick is fucking pulsing in his hand, but there’s nothing more humiliating than the prospect of jerking off when San – the main feature of his fantasies and the original cause of all this – is standing a few meters away, separated only by a wooden door that does absolutely nothing to muffle sound.

But also, the thought of leaving the bathroom rock-hard and even more sexually frustrated than he’d been during practice makes him want to cry.

Slowly, heart hammering in his throat, he slides his hand along his cock, just once. Fuck, he’s so horny.

San’s started humming outside the door, practicing his part in one of their songs or something, and Wooyoung can’t do this.

He can’t.

So he switches the valve of the shower to the coldest setting, icy water flowing over his head and back as he tries to numb the heat flowing through his entire body. The water is painfully cold, and he can’t bear it for longer than a few seconds, so he gives up on that and switches the shower off. At least he’s a little less hard, albeit none the less sexually frustrated.

Wooyoung steps out and wraps the towel around his waist, taking a few seconds to adjust himself so that his fairly obvious boner becomes slightly less obvious.

This is so fucking unfair, he thinks, feeling incredibly sorry for himself and his current predicament.

He unlocks the door and steps past San, angling himself so that his crotch is facing away from him. “Shower’s all yours,” he says.

“Thanks,” San says, and there’s something in his expression that Wooyoung can’t pinpoint. San’s gaze dips to Wooyoung’s shoulders and back, then returns to his eyes. “That new workout routine is really paying off, huh?”

“What?” Wooyoung says dumbly.

“You just look good, that’s all.” San says, poking his finger firmly into Wooyoung’s bicep. Wooyoung’s cock twitches and he grips the towel more firmly.

“Uh, th-thank you,” Wooyoung manages to say. He has no idea how he hasn’t melted into a puddle of horniness on the floor.

San looks at him for another long moment, during which Wooyoung wonders whether San will attribute his flushed cheeks to the shower he’d just taken. Then San smiles brightly at him, all dimples and sunny eyes, and walks into the bathroom, shutting the door in Wooyoung’s face.

Okay. What the fuck.

It really feels like the universe has decided to take a massive dump on his life and now everything sucks and he’s still so turned on, but it’s like an itch (a really distracting, painfully inconvenient itch) he can’t scratch.

He walks back into his room and momentarily considers asking Yeosang to give him a few minutes of privacy so that he can finally take care of his boner, but the request feels so mortifying that he can’t bring himself to do that. Even if he pretends it’s for an unrelated reason, there’s no way Yeosang wouldn’t guess the truth. And then he’d probably tell the other members, and everyone would tease Wooyoung for not being able to handle his urges properly like the rest of them.

So instead Wooyoung miserably pulls on a pair of cotton pyjama pants and bundles himself up under his blanket in bed. Even the thin fabric feels stimulating against his sensitive skin, the simple movement of pushing his hips against the covers so nice that if Yeosang wasn’t sitting a meter away in his own bed then Wooyoung would probably be able to get himself off like that.

But Yeosang is sitting right there, so Wooyoung stills and tries to picture the unsexiest things he can imagine in an attempt to kill his boner: The Pokemon theme song. Cats wearing sunglasses. Multiplication tables. Their manager eating pizza. San in the shower, right now, naked with water rolling down his body, maybe reaching down to touch his own cock and-

Fuck. Wooyoung’s life sucks.

He already knows that he’s not gonna get much sleep tonight.