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My brother's best friend - Polca FF

Chapter Text

Tay's POV:

"Hey! Hey Phi!", Earth nudged me with his foot. I ignored him and snuggled into my pillow to snooze for a while. He started it again after a while which annoyed me to death. I hated one thing the most in the world and that was to be woken up early.

"What is it?", I roared at him throwing away my duvet. 

"P-phi...", A small voice stuttered from the edge of the bed. I rubbed my eyes to remove the sleep and see it was not my brother but some other guy. 

"Where is that little-", I stopped and stared at this nong. 

"Earth!!", he left shouting for my younger brother. I got off the bed and quickly entered the bathroom to wash up. 

I walked down to the kitchen and saw my whole family having breakfast including the nong who I woke me up. I settled in my usual chair and mae served me food. 

"Who is this?", I asked pointing my chin in the direction of the young guy.

"I'm-"

"He is my friend, none of your business.", Earth cut him off

"Then what was he doing in my room?", I asked annoyed with his tone.

"Might have mistaken it for mine."

"How many times have I told you not to wake me up like that?"

"Mae told me to wake you."

"Enough both you!", Por said sharply which cut our banter short and we continued eating in silence.

"Will you drop us on the way?", Earth asked after a while.

"No, I'm going with Off and Tul."

"New, come on otherwise we'll be late.", he pulled the other guy up when he was not even done eating.

"Is this New?", I was surprised to Earth's childhood best friend.

"Yeah, you didn't recognize him?"

"Nope, he changed a lot over summer."

"Whatever, we are getting late-"

"Let him eat first.", I interfered, "I'll drop him after he is done."

"Why can't you drop me then?"

"You're a nuisance."

The whole banter was observed by the newcomer who was eating his food quietly. We finished eating and walked out together followed by sulking Earth. 

"I'll drop you both, now stop sulking.", I said to Earth and opened Off's car which was waiting for us.

"Hey Nong!", Off greeted my brother.

We squeezed the back seat as we all were bulky. I put my arm on the back of the seat for comfort. I felt New relax under my arm.

"Are you guys excited for your first day?", Tul asked everyone in general.

"Not much.", Earth replied.

"Kinda.", New followed.

"Tay might have already prepared his schedule.", Off mocked.

"Yeah", Tul agreed and I kept to myself while their conversation went on about meeting new girls in the university.

It took us about 10 mins to reach the destination. Earth and New waid at us before walking away.

"Penny for your thoughts, Tay?", Tul asked after the nongs left.

"Nothing much."

"Well, your face is saying otherwise.", Off watched me from the rear view mirror.

"uhh, are you guys ready for the first day?"

"Don't expect a lot, there is only going to be an induction program.", Off said nonchalantly

"Are the hazers going to be there?", I asked

"Most probably...", Tul sighed.

"I hope they go easy on us."

"I have heard engineering hazers are the worst, other facilities are fairly chilled.", Off added

"Aow, so we don't need to worry, Off." Tul snickered beside him and they clapped hands.

Tul and Off were my best friends and we had enrolled in the university this year. We had different faculties but we decided to go together everyday like we did in school. I knew Tul since he transferred to our school in 6th Grade where as Off was my friend from kindergarten.

"Hope I survive this." I sighed as the university came into sight.

We parked the car and looked for the way to our faculties. We parted ways as the directions changed. I found my way to the auditorium of our faculty. They started with the introductions of our seniors and the hazers. Everyone seemed scared of the hazers but when they started talking everyone visibly relaxed.

"Attention freshers!", a sharp voice called us from behind us. We all turned around and saw a stern looking senior approach us with a girl on his heels. 

"I'm Mark, the head hazer of this faculty.", he strode in front of us, "This is MewNittha, the head nurse."

He started explaining about the college and its norms. I thought we all will be spared this year but I was wrong. He looked scary but the girl beside him looked very cute. The program went on for about an hour, after finishing the program we were dismissed but I observed them joking around and snickering with each other. I wondered if I'll get such a beautiful girlfriend. I crashed into someone while looking at them.

"I'm sorry.", we both said simultaneously. I bent down to pick the scattered book while the other person followed the same. I looked up and saw a beautiful girl smiling at me while holding out a book. She looked shorter than me and her shoulder length hair bounced as she moved. 

"Are you a fresher?", I asked curiously.

"Yes! Even you are.", she stated.

"How did you know?", I ask confused.

"Your name badge.", she smiled.

"Ohh", I smiled sheepishly, "Which faculty?"

"Mechanical engineering."

"Me too, so we'll be seeing each other often. Can we exchange our line ids?"

"Smooth and sure.", I handed her my phone to punch in the id.

"Are you free now?"

"Umm, yeah...why?"

"Can we grab a coffee at the cafeteria while we explore the college."

"Sure..."

"I forgot to ask your name..."

"Mild."

"Hey Mild, I'm Tay."

"I know"

"The name badge."

She smiled and started walking towards the exit. We walked till the cafeteria and found a place in a far corner as it was crowded with seniors. 

"What will you like to drink?", I asked her after settling down.

"Let's check out the menu and decide.", she said looking around.

We walked to the counter and decided on cold coffee. I insisted to pay but she said we should go dutch and I would be lying if I said I was not impressed. She had a cool kind of personality which was attractive. She could easily pass by as tom boy if her hair had been short. She was the kind of girl I wanted to date in the university. We talked for a while and her friends joined us. Tul and Off sauntered to our table looking at the beautiful girls. 

We talked for a while then dispersed for the day. I came back home and saw Earth and New studying the living room with their books spread around them. 

"What are you guys studying?", I asked them

"Physics."

"Oh my favorite subject."

"Thank you for the useless information. New, pay attention, I'll explain this concept for the last time now. Momentum is mass multiplied with velocity."

"I know the formula but I missed the concept there."

"Momentum is mass in motion, for example if you kick a football, it will go with fast speed at first but it slow slow down to a constant speed after a while and then gradually come to stop. The different speeds will help you calculate the momentums of the ball.", I explained to him but he still looked blankly at me. I tried to explain him again in layman language and he finally understood what I meant.

"Thank you Phi!", he said with joint hands in a wai.

"Its okay. Are you a weak student?"

"A little.", he said meekly

"No, he missed this class so he didn't understand it otherwise he scores well in every exam."

"Nothing like that, if I understand the concept everything gets easier."

"If you need help again, you can ask me.", I said before walking away to my room.

Later that night, I texted Mild to ask about the schedule for tomorrow. She replied quickly and I found out that we had most of our classes together this semester.  I smiled to myself thinking about her but New's innocent face floated in my mind.  I remembered how his face looked while he was trying to understand the problem I was explaining. I don't know when I fell asleep after that.

A/n

My first fan fic I hope you guys will enjoy this as much I enjoy writing this. It might have a few grammatical error, please excuse me for that and I'll try to edit it as soon as possible. Its a Tay New Fanfic with Earth as the support character. Tul and Off are Tay's bestfriends. I observed that on their IG's and I was quite impressed by that. this will be a series of stories so Tul  and Off both will get their own book soon. I would love to hear from you Polcas!! Love  love chings thank you reading and don't forget to  vote for this story.

P.S. Happy Republic Day to all Indian readers! 

 

Chapter Text

New's POV

"Hey, will you stay for dinner?", Earth asked me after his brother left.

"No, I'll go home now, thanks for today."

"No worries, be careful on your way back."

I walked out of the house and looked back at the light in the window on the second floor. I wondered what might he be doing. I had a crush on my best friend's brother for about 2 years now. I just kept it to myself and didn't let anyone know because one he was my best friend's brother and second I didn't how he might react to the fact that I like him. I was content in liking him secretly. 

I knew I was gay since a very young age and my mother had accepted me the way I am but my father was not happy with my choice. I had an older brother and a sister, they both were cool with me being gay but sometimes my brother would make fun of me and sister stood up for me during those times. My sister's name is MewNittha and brother's name is Kay. MewNittha was studying Medical Degree in college whereas Kay worked in a finance firm. 

"You're back?", my sister asked me as I opened the door.

"Yes, mom and dad?", I asked hoping for a different answer.

"They'll be home late, freshen up and come down for dinner.", she instructed going back into the kitchen. My mother is a Doctor, so stayed at her clinic till late and my father was an engineer and also a government official. Therefore, they both had work till late, so MewNittha cooked and took care of us in their absence.

We talked about school and college respectively, while Kay listened to us. MewNittha was telling us about her boyfriend, Mark. 

"He is very mean as the head hazer, I hope the new kids will be okay otherwise they'll drop out after 1st year only.", she said worried.

"Don't worry, they just care a lot about their nongs."

"Hope so.", I added.

"Are you planning to take engineering next year?", Kay asked.

"Most probably.", I said shrugging.

"Take something you like doing, don't rush into a decision just because of a friend or us.", my sister said 

"Yes P, I'll think about it."

"Don't entertain him a lot, in the end its about money only"

"If you're not happy earning it what's the point."

"A good degree is everything MewNittha."

"Thank you both of you, I'll think about it.", I cut them short to stop it from turning into a full fledged fight. We had the rest of the dinner watching a TV show, laughing occasionally. Mom Dad arrived a while later and we talked about our day before going off to bed. I texted Earth to ask about next day and we decided to go together. I wanted to ask him P's schedule but thought against it. 

***

The next morning, I rode my bike to their place and saw P waiting for his friends.

"Swadee krab P~", I waid at him

"Wadee ", he replied shortly.

"Are you waiting for your friends?"

"Yup and Earth will take a while to come, I suggest you to go ahead otherwise you'll be late."

"Its okay, I can wait."

"As you wish."

I dropped Earth a message that I was waiting for him and turned to look at my prince again. His hair was disheveled and slightly wet after shower. He wore the white shirt of the university and light blue jeans which slung low. He wore white canvas shoes today with a messenger bag which made him look sexier than usual. I gulped as my eyes stopped at the thing in between his legs but I quickly looked away. 

"Where the hell are you both?", he asked in an irritated tone. "What!? 10 more minutes!", he exclaimed after got a response, "I'll go on my own and meet you guys later."

"Should I drop you on my way?", I asked without thinking.

"What about Earth?"

"Can your friends drop him if they both are late?"

"That is a great idea, lets go!", he settled on the backseat and started making calls. We drove to the university while occasionally talking. He leaned closer to me to hear my voice and his breath fanned over my neck as he talked. I almost missed a few sentences because of the tingling sensations.

"How are your studies going?", he asked

"Its good."

"Are you taking the entrance exams?"

"Yup."

"For engineering?"

"I'll try my best and but I might change my major later."

"Do what you like and if you need feel free to ask me."

"My phi also suggested the same thing but I'm not sure what I want yet."

"You still have a year, make full use of it."

I drove in silence after that. We reached the university and he bid me goodbye. I watched him till he disappeared among the crowd. I came back to our college and waited for Earth. He came right before the classes started.

"You ditched me!", he said angrily after the bell rang.

"You were late.", I stated calmly.

"So, you always waited for me."

"P was in a hurry so I dropped him."

"P'Tay!", he rolled his eyes before collecting his lunch and joining me to our table.

"What were you doing?"

"Nothing."

"Were you flirting with a new girl?", I teased him and he looked away.

"No, I got up late because I was dreaming about you."

"Oh, What was it about?"

"We were out on the beach, relaxing in the sun and playing in the water."

"Wow, some dreams will remain dreams, I guess."

"Whatever."

We continued our banter while having lunch and then resumed to the classes. We went back home together to study and do homework. P'Tay came home after a while looking very happy. He came over and asked us about our day.

"What's up with you brother?", Earth asked suspiciously.

"Nothing why?", P'Tay was still grinning.

"You think I don't know my brother well?"

"Nooo, you don't know me at all.", P'Tay laughed

"Spill it."

"Okay, well, I might have a wife soon.", he said shyly which broke my happy reverie, "She is from my department and we had our first date today...", I shut my ears for the rest of the conversation otherwise my heart would shatter into more pieces than it was already in. 

"Good for you.", Earth said smiling at him.

"We'll be like P'Mark and P'MewNittha, they both are goals."

"Are you talking about P'MewNittha from Medicine faculty and P'Mark from engineering faculty.", I asked to confirm.

"Yes why?"

"P'MewNittha is my sister.", I said in a small voice.

"Oh, I didn't know that."

"Anyways, I'll leave first.", I said packing my books.

"Why are you leaving so early?", Earth asked.

"P asked me to buy some grocery, I better leave early."

"Okay, I'll see you tomorrow."

"Bye.", I walked out of the door listening to P'Tay's excited explanation about his new girlfriend. I knew he had a quite few girlfriends before but he was never this serious about them. I knew that because he never told his brother about it. This seemed very serious and he even looked happy. 

I drove home and helped P with making food. She was surprised at first but didn't say anything about it.

"Are you okay, New?", Kay asked after dinner.

I realized my sister might have told him something. "I'm good, why?"

"You seem very quiet today."

"Studies are taking a toll on me. I'll go sleep now.", I lied and walked back to my room.

 I consoled myself and decided to like him discreetly without letting him know in the end I just wanted him to be happy. That was one of the nights I cried myself to sleep.

A/n

Just a brief introduction to New. The POV's will depend on the story. I hope you enjoyed this part, the starting will seem a bit sad but it'll get better. Have you guys been following Tay on IG, he hanging out with Off a lot which makes me happy. Newwiee seems busy in taking solo photos for Stay New II. On that note I want that album, the pictures seems great. Enough of me ranting, thank you reading and do vote on the story.

P.S: Mark Prin and Mew Nittha  have worked together in a Thai Larkon  named "My husband in law", do check it out for their cute chemistry.  T his is a ghost ship because  P'Mew  is married and  P'Mark  has girlfriend. Aren't they adorable? 😍❤️

 

 

Chapter Text

Tay's POV

Mild had agreed to go out on date and I was elated about it. I came home really happy but after I saw New's fallen expression the excitement died down. I went back to my room and continued doing my work. Why did it matter to me if he was happy about it or not. I pushed his thoughts aside and started working on a new project. Earth called me for dinner after a while and I got busy talking with Dad.

"How is your college?", he asked while looking for his glasses.

"They are on your head and college is good."

"Oh thanks son.", he said picking out his glasses.

"Your welcome Dad."

"Will you change your stream next year?", I wanted computer science as my stream but I got mechanical engineering so I decided to take it and change it later. Now that dad had got this topic out, I think I'll stick to mechanical, it doesn't seem that bad. Dad was the CEO of a construction company which will be eventually handed down to me in near future.

"I'm not sure..."

"why?", he asked amused.

"It will depend on my interest..."

"Make a decision and follow it, don't go back and forth in that after all your future is depended on it."

"Yes dad."

"You'll be an example to your brother."

"Yes dad."

I excused myself after that and started working on my project again. My phone dinged with a notification for a message.

Mild: Hey, what time are you coming to college tom?

Me: 9 probably wbu?

Mild: Me too

Me: I'll see you then?

Mild: sure, gn.

A few days passed by exchanging texts and knowing each other. Mild was a easy going girl with a good personality but as I spent time with her we didn't click together. So one day she called me early and said,

"Tay, I think we are better as friends. I don't want to take a step further into a relationship and ruin what we have. Is it okay?"

"Yeah...", I was a little heartbroken but it was okay.

Our little group was expanding in the university now. Tul and Off got their friends from their faculty and others too. Things got more interesting as we got to many people.

One day, Off and I were chatting in the cafeteria after college when Tul came up with a handsome stranger.

"Hey guys, meet Mew Suppasit."

"Hi!", we greeted each other as they settled down and before we could ask him anything Mild stormed in.

"Hoi!", Mild slammed a box on the table and sat down beside me.

"What happened?", I asked her amused while others looked at the box curiously.

"This guy won't leave me alone!", she complained.

"Who?"

"I don't know his faculty or name."

"Then how do you know its a guy?", Off asked.

"He always sends chocolates and gifts through my locker."

"Are you sure it's not a girl?", I asked suppressing my laugh.

"Ai'Tay, I'll hit you if joke about this."

"The sweets are yummy though.", Tul said with his mouth full and everyone started laughing except Mild.

"Swadee Krab... Sorry I was too angry to wish you.", Mild said giving a wai to Mew.

"Wadee... I'm Mew and I guess you're Mild."

"Yes, which faculty are you from?"

"Medicine."

"Ohh you're a doctor?", Off asked picking a chocolate.

"Yes, soon to be."

"You can have some of the chocolates.", Mild said completely forgetting her anger.

"What is your major?", I asked.

"I'm planning on cardiology or cosmetology."

"That's great."

"Are you a model?", Mild asked.

"No..", he laughed ruffling his hair but his overall personality looked like a model.
"I got offers for modelling but I'm not interested as of now."

We all sat in silence for while which was then broken by Off, "I like that, I'll help you with the designing. Tay here clicks really amazing photos."

"What about me?", Tul asked pouting.

"You can vlog the whole thing while Mild can take care of makeup.", Off continued.

"Did you ask him if he wants this or no?", Mild asked in the end.

"I don't mind doing a photo shoot with you guys.", Mew said smiling. around.

"That settles everything, we'll do it after planning it well.", I added.

This was how our group was formed. We didn't have a particular name but everyone knew us. We were people from different faculties but our differences got us close.

A few weeks passed by in college and assignments started piling up at home. I came home late which made mom dad worried but they didn't oppose. I decided to invite our group home one day.

"Let's plan the whole thing for Mew's shoot at my place.", I suggested.

"Will your mom be okay with so many people coming over?", Mild asked.

"Yeah, we can order pizza for dinner."

"Sure then."

We all piled up in Tul's car and drove home. The house was empty which meant mom dad was on a business trip and Earth was not home. We sat in the living room discussing ideas and writing them down. We were so engrossed in our work that we didn't notice the door opening.

"What are you doing?", Earth barged in the living room followed by New. "Oh hi.", he greeted everyone awkwardly.

"We are working on a project.", I said nonchalantly.

"Okay, I'm making ramen if you want yours come get it yourself."

"Earth, please get one for me!!", Off waved his hand.

"P~"

"Me too", Tul added.

"I'll get it for us.", I said following Earth to the kitchen.

"When will mom dad return?"

"I guess they are on a business trip...", I trialed off looking at the sticky note on the refrigerator saying:

We are on a business trip for 2 days. Tonight's dinner and tomorrow's lunch is the refrigerator, if you need anything use the cash. No partying or staying out late. I'll call at night.

I could almost hear my mother say that. I glanced at my brother and smirked.

"No stay overs!", he said reading my smirk.

"New can stay too if he wants.", I added

"Only boys then."

"Obviously!"

We walked back with ramen for everyone and saw New talking with Mild and Off about something pointing in the ipad.

"Ramen everyone!", Earth announced walking in.

"What took you so long?", Tul said grabbing a bowl.

"Two brothers must be conspiring something.", Off snickered while Mew and Mild chuckled.

I glanced at Earth and said, "You guys can stay over if you want, mom dad aren't coming back for 2 more days."

"Ohh..., I've to go back in sometime.", Mild said raising her hands.

"Me too, I have not informed at home so I'll drop Mild on my way."

"Okay."

"What about you two?", I asked turning towards Tul and Off.

"We are staying!", they said together.

"New has some very good ideas lets write them down.", Mild suggested picking up a bowl.

We put a music video and ate the noodles while watching it.

"The visuals were quite aesthetic, we can use similar setting in the sunset for a better natural lighting. I think some neutral and cool colors will make a good contrast to the setting.", New concludes after watching the video which renders everyone speechless as everyone was more focused on the song.

"I think I get your point.", Mild agrees after thinking over it.

"I was enjoying the song only.", Off said sheepishly.

"Me too!", Earth added.

"I have watched this many times so I looked at it from a different perspective this time.", New said smiling in the end. It was a new song and we had watched it for the first time.

They continued talking about the photo shoot for a while. Earth then pulled New to his room to study because they had come home early to study. Mild and Mew left after a while which left us three. We put on a action movie settled with popcorn. Earth and New joined us for dinner and we had a quite dinner while watching the movie.

We all settled in one room after dinner and the guys fell asleep as soon as their heads touched the pillow. I was awake reading a story when I heard the creaking sound of our stairs. Earth or New might have been thirsty, I thought to myself and continued reading. The noise didn't return again which meant the person was still down so I decided to check.

I walked down the stairs and checked the kitchen but no one was there. I then saw the porch door open from the living room. I stepped out and saw someone lounging on the chair. I walked close and saw it was New.

"What are you doing here?", I asked him sharply and he jumped out of seat.

 

 

Chapter Text

Tay's POV

He jumped a little and turned around, looking at me like a deer caught in head lights. I repeated my question softly this time, "What are you doing here?"

"I can't sleep without drinking milk.", he replied raising his glass.

"Such a kid.", I muttered under my breath and settled beside him. 

"Not a kid P, its a habit. It helps sleep better and keep the body healthy."

"Okay, I'm not saying anything.", We both sat in silence looking everywhere except at each other. He sipped on his drink and played around with the grass near his feet.

"Red ants will bite you, if you keep doing that.", I said finally looking at his antics. He looked up at me with his wide eyes and my heart jumped a little at his innocent look. 

"They might have slept already.", he smiled and I laughed

"What are your plans after completing high school?"

"I'll take the entrance exam for different faculties."

"Which faculty are your priority?"

"I'm not sure yet", I glanced at him

"What do you want to do?"

"I want to learn filmography."

"Why?"

"I want to learn how the films are made and make my own one day. I want to make a movie like Mr. Bean's Holiday."

"Wow."

"I like the way he roams around in France lost, he records all those small moments and makes a master piece in the end. Bangkok love stories and Theory of love are few of the local ones I like."

"That's great."

"What do you want to do, P~"

That question rendered me speechless for a minute, "I want to be a photographer."

"Why are you doing engineering?"

"Responsibilities."

"No one asked you to take it, so why?"

"I want to take it on myself, New."

"You won't be able to do what you want then."

"If I love really photography, I'll make sure I have time for that."

"True.", he took some sips of milk while I watched his adam's apple bob up and down as he took those. He pulled the mug away and revealed a milk mustache. I started laughing at his cute kitten like face.

"What?", he asked cutely, wait did why did this word pop in my mind, I pushed that thought aside and leaned towards him. I wiped off the mustache with my thumb just the way they do it in the Korean dramas. 

"You're watching too many dramas, aren't you?", he asked pulling away.

"No.", I said wiping my thumb on his t shirt. 

"I'm going to sleep first then."

"New!", I called him just as he was about to enter the house.

"Yes P~"

"If you need any help in studying feel free to ask anytime, good night."

"Good night P~"

I stayed in the porch for a while longer thinking. New was giving e different feelings, some unknown ones which I didn't know existed. I wanted to hear the hear his explanations alone, his ideas seem fresh and raw. The way he was watching the video sometimes with narrowed eyes showed the way he observed the details. I was unknowingly observing him. The way he talked about his dreams showed how passionate he was about it. I should stop thinking about him but then this blushed face when I wiped his lips filtered in my mind.

"Stop it!", I chided myself aloud and walked back to my room. I lay beside my friends and fell asleep.

***

The next morning, I woke up with something heavy on me. I snuggled into my pillow for warmth but why did it feel so silky? I opened my eyes saw New sleeping peacefully in my arms. I stiffened myself from making sudden movements in case he woke up. I decided to keep the way we are till he wakes up. I looked around and saw it was my room only. Earth was sleeping beside New and Tul - Off were on my other side. I felt New move and shiver under me, so I covered him with my duvet and he fell asleep. He looked cute while sleeping, just like a kid. What am I thinking, I pushed those thoughts aside and slowly got up to prepare for the day. 

I freshened up and started making breakfast for everyone. The guys will ask for food first thing in morning. I prepared rice and some fried veggies to accompany that.

"What are you doing?", Tul asked walking in looking freshly showered.

"Breakfast, what would you like Tea or coffee?", I asked him without turning around.

"Coffee please and did you collect the newspaper?"

"No, can you get it please"

Tul walked away to get the newspaper and Off walked looking sleepy as ever.

"Why didn't you get ready?", I asked him

"Someone is using the washroom."

"Who"

"Both are engaged."

"Okay, Tea or coffee?"

"Coffee."

"P~ !!", Earth shouted from upstairs.

"What is it?"

"I want my soap."

I looked around the cabinets in the kitchen for soap but then realized they might be in master bedroom. I walked up and found his body wash.

"Next time take your things with you.", I chided him and turned around to walk away but bumped into New. He had showered, the drops were dripping from his hair to his chest and slowly rolling down disappearing in his towel. He was slightly red before he walked away from my gaze. I walked back to the kitchen collecting myself and saw Tul and Off bickering about something. I poured coffee for us and we sat eating our breakfast. Earth and New joined us just as we were about to to finish

"Earth, I forgot to tell you, I have to pick Gun on the way so I'll leave first.", New said while sipping on his coffee

"Gun had called again, he is coming here."

"Can you guys do me a favor and leave a bike here for me?", I asked looking the place.

"Why P?", New asked.

"He needs to clean up the house a bit before leaving, we can go by car.", Earth explains for me.

"Hiiii!!", Gun comes in squealing, "Swadee krab P~"

"Wadee N'Gun, will you have coffee and breakfast?"

"Yes, thank you."

I place a dish in front him and Tul walked in with his bag.

"We'll leave when Off is ready.", he announced.

"Tul, take everyone with you in the car and I'll come by bike later."

"What about your morning class?"

"My class is late, you guys need to hurry."

"Okay..., Ai'Off come down, we are late as it is!", Tul shouted.

"Coming!", Off walked down looking dashing as ever.

"Guys, this is Nong Gun and Nong Gun they are my friend Tul and Off."

"Swadee krab.", he said softly but I caught him staring at Off. 

"He is cute!", Tul said ruffling nong Gun's hair. 

"Okay, we are leaving!", Off announced pulling Tul with him.

"P~", New said from the counter, "I have to drop by home so can we go together?"

"Sure!", I remembered the morning incident and smiled to myself while washing the dishes.

 

 

Chapter Text

Tay's POV

"P~", New called me meekly after I dropped near his school gate.

"Yes?"

"Can you help me in physics?"

"Sure, why are were you so hesitant about that?"

"Ahh...umm...", I scoffed and he continued, "I thought you'll be busy now that you're in the university and you have..."

"A girlfriend?", I completed for him

"Yeah.. no... I mean studies."

"Oh don't worry, I'll manage to make time to teach you. Lets do it three times a week?"

"Sure!"

"Lets start it today itself."

"Okay, Where?"

"My place."

"Okay."

"Should I pick you up? I have your bike and even Earth didn't get his."

"Yes that will work."

"Okay, see you later then."

I turned the bike and drove back to the university. I met Mild walking towards our faculty so I picked her up on the way.

"Why are you so late?", she asked

"I was busy cleaning at home and then dropped nong New on the way."

"When are your parents coming back?"

"Maybe tomorrow."

"Nong New is a smart kid"

"Yeah."

"Should I ask him to assist us in shooting?"

"They need to study, Mild."

"Yeah, that's there but I was thinking of having a shoot in Hua Hin. Its not far from here and we get some good shots there."

"Aren't we a little too serious about this?"

"Come on Tay, it'll be kind of a trip and we'll get to know everyone better and you can get your brother and New too."

"Let's ask other before planning anything."

"Yes!"

"Add nong Gun too."

"Whose he?"

"Earth's friend."

"Oh okay, so I'll take it as a yes for the trip."

"Lets see after first test."

"Shit, we are late.", Mild said poking her head inside the classroom. 

We entered the classroom and saw that the teacher was yet to arrive. The day passed by in attending lectures and completing assignments. I asked Mild, if she wanted to study together after college but she declined and left. I drove the bike to pick New from high school. I reached there and saw him looking around like a lost puppy. 

"Hey!", I called him.

"Phi~"

"Why are you standing their like that and where is Earth?"

"He left with P'Off, P'Tul and Gun"

"Oh and you?"

"I thought your ride would be wasted so I waited back."

"Okay.", I smiled to myself. Right before I left college, Tul called me to inform that New was not listening and insisted on waiting. I smiled to myself all the way back home.  We had a small conversation on the bike. Being with New felt different, we talked about many different things. It was never silent around him, we always have conversation flowing or even our silence was comfortable. 

We reached home and started studying. We called Earth but he declined so went about our way. Halfway after we were done, New started telling me about an incident from his school. I watched him explain animatedly. I had sudden urge to keep these stories to myself so I asked him,

"Do you tell Earth things this?"

"Yeah, sometimes but usually he is there to experience this with me."

"Oh, that's nice."

"Yeah, Earth is always there to tease me."

I laughed little bitterly and said,

"I'll give you some problems to solve, try them and if you have any doubts ask me."

"Are you going somewhere?"

"Yes, I'll be in my room working on my project."

"Okay.", he said with disappointed eyes.

"You can ask me if you have doubts."

I walked back to my room and told Earth we were done. I started working my project and made myself busy with it. I didn't realize when New left and it was time for us to have dinner. 

"P~", Earth asked while I made dinner for us.

"Um?"

"Take it easy on, New."

"What?"

"He is a weak hearted person and he tries his best so take it easy on him."

"What are you implying?"

"Don't be harsh while teaching him."

"I'm not!", I turned around to face my brother, "Did he tell you that?"

"He doesn't need to tell me things, I can read his face."

"I didn't do anything, nong.", I continued cooking.

"Okay."

We were silent for a while, I cooked the dinner and served it to both us. We sat eating quietly when something my brother said surprised me,

"Its bad, to show a child chocolate not give him that."

I scoffed and asked him, "When did I give hope?"

"I'm just saying it."

"Earth, if its going to cause problems among us, I better stop here."

"Even I don't want a cause problem Phi~"

"Then?"

"Its just, I get protective about New."

"Okay. I'll care of things."

"I'm sorry."

"Its okay."

"You forgot to put salt in this.", he said after taking the first bite of the fried rice I made.

"It might be less.", I said passing him the salt shaker.

We ate while talking about college and retired to our respective rooms after we were done. I decided to pick New tomorrow as a sorry for my bitterness but I didn't feel like I was bitter.

The next day, I got ready early and was greeted by mom cooking in the kitchen.

"When did you guys come back?", I asked hugging her.

"We came back late last night."

"How was your trip?"

"Hectic as usual but I hope you guys stayed well."

"Yeah, as long as you didn't get a call from Earth complaining I think we were okay."

"What did I say about partying?"

"We didn't party, mom.", she just raised her eyebrows at me clearly not believing a word.

"Off, Tul and New crashed here that's it."

"Are you sure it was just them?"

"Yes mom."

"Okay, I trust you."

"How did you know?"

"Its my home Tawan, I obviously know things.", she used my name only for putting her point forward and it clearly meant business.

"Okay, I'll leave early today, bye mom."

"What about breakfast?", Mom followed me to the door but I said I'll have it outside with friends.

I drove around the corner to New's place and waited outside his house. I texted Off and Tul about the change of arrangements. New walked out of the house and stared at me for moment before walking back mumbling something about being sleepy. He came back after a few moments saw me still waiting for him.

"Are you for real?", he asked.

"Yeah."

"Why did you come to pick me up?"

"I wanted to come so I came."

"Woah!"

"Come on otherwise we'll be late."

"I still have an hour before class.", he said settling on the backseat.

"Let's have breakfast before class."

We drove to a small eatery outside his college in silence. I didn't know what he was thinking. I got us soy milk and some buns. 

"What are you thinking about?", I asked settling on the stool on the opposite side.

"Nothing." and he broke into a smile.

"Are you okay?"

"Yup."

"You can tell me anything,", I said after a while, "If you're not okay with my teaching methods or have any problems just share them, don't keep it yourself."

A look of realization passed on his face and he said, "Phi, its just... yesterday... I was upset about something else about school."

"Is everything okay there?"

"Yeah, I'm...um... sometimes worried about Gun."

"Gun?"

"Yeah, his friends keeping fights and he ends up solving them."

"Oh, tell to focus more on studying than such things."

"Yes.", he dug into his food and started eating. 

 

"Anyways, we'll not have tutoring sessions today."

"Why?"

"We had decided alternate days."

"Yes."

"When are your mid semester test schedule?"

"They will be conducted in September or something, why p?"

"We are planning a shoot in Hua Hin after our tests so if you guys want to join us..."

"Yes!!", He cut me off in between.

"Okay, I'll talk to others about this but tell me the dates of your exams so we can schedule accordingly."

"Its al-" *Ring* *Ring* My phone started buzzing and I picked it without checking, 

"Where are you?", Mild's voice floated in.

"Near college, why?"

"Well, get ready to be punished by P'Mark."

"What happened?", I asked panic listening to our head hazer's name.

"We were called early today."

"Damn, I didn't know about this."

"Well, hurry up here then."

"On my way.", I quickly gulped down the milk and bid New goodbye before rushing off to college. 

Chapter Text

"P~", I clashed into P'Mark while rushing to the auditorium. 

"Why are you here?", he asked sternly.

"I-I.."

"You just came?"

I didn't reply so he hummed in response. 

"Go do 5 laps of the running field."

"Five?!"

"Yes and report to me after you complete it.", he turned around and left. I groaned loud enough for him to turn back with raised eyebrows.

"If I hear that again you'll busy for the whole day."

"Sorry P~"

"Better start now."

I ran to the ground and started doing the laps. I was dead tired after 3 rounds but I kept on running under the blazing morning sun. I saw Mild, P'MewNittha and P'Mark watching from the sidelines while talking. I finished the last to 2 laps and rushed to the bleachers panting like a dog. Mild offered me a cold towel to wipe away my sweat. 

"Good, now take this to your homeroom teacher.". P'Mark said pointing at the box kept on the bleachers, "Thank you.", he waved at us and walked away pulling his complaining girlfriend with him.

"What did he say to you?", I asked looking for a water bottle.

"Nothing."

"Why he did make me run?"

"Others were told to do squats in the auditorium."

"Damn it, does he have some grudge against me or something?"

"I don't think so but you didn't come to auditorium so he might have told you to do the laps."

"He caught me outside the auditorium at 8:15."

"Aow but people came till 8:30 and they were told to do squats before joining."

"Whatever, lets go to class.", I gulped down a bottle of water. 

"Where were you when I called?", Mild asked me suspiciously.

"Why?"

"You never up so early so I just asked."

"I picked nong New on the way."

"Ohhhh, Newwiee...."

"Why did you call him Newwiee?"

"He had told us the last time we met that we can him Newwiee."

"Oh."

We were at the door of classroom by the time our conversation got over. I handed the teacher the box but she asked me to deliver it to the staff room in lunch break. The classes started and rolled by in dull mode. My mind kept on drifting to New's stoic expression when I was about to leave or the expression he made while solving a complex physics problem. I shook my head to get me back to present but the teacher caught my expression and asked me the solution for a the problem on the board. Thankfully, it was open in my book so I quickly answered and sat down. She then told me to pay attention while Mild glanced at me and chuckled lightly. 

"Lost is the dreamland?", Mild asked turning around as soon as our classes were over. 

"No, I was just sleepy."

"Okay whatever, what do you want to eat?"

"Why?"

"You have to deliver that or did you forget already? I'll buy your lunch and wait at our table."

"Ohh, thank you, I'll be there as soon as possible then."

I started walking to the staff room in our building but the teacher stopped me and told me to deliver the box to a different faculty which was across the campus. I had no choice but to complete the task at hand. I walked all the way across the university while the box felt like it was filled with stones each passing moment. I finally reached the faculty and kept the box. Half lunch break was gone in coming back to the cafeteria and looking for my friends. I settled and started eating the food without greeting everyone.

"Slow down or you'll choke on your food.", Tul said in a concerned tone.

"Here.", Off placed a bottle of juice in front of me.

I stopped eating and stared at my friends for a minute, "What do you know?"

"Mild told us everything from meeting Newwiee to P'Mark.", Mew said

I was starting to get irritated the way they called New, Newwiee, but I kept in it in my mind and continued, "I'll be okay, don't worry."

"You look like you'll pass out any moment.", Mild pressed my shoulder.

"Just tired.", I shrugged.

I ate my lunch quickly while others talked about their classes and I suddenly remembered our conversation from early morning,

"Oh, I almost forgot to tell you guys that New agreed to go on the trip to Hua Hin after his mid semester exams with Earth and Gun too."

Tul, Off and Mew looked at each other confused and then asked, "What trip are you talking about?"

I glanced at Mild with raised eyebrows, "You didn't tell them?"

"It kind of slipped out of my mind."

"Its your fault if they cancel."

"Will you guys explain us what is this spontaneous trip about?", Tul cut short our banter.

Mild explained them the whole plan of going to Hua Hin after the mid semesters for a trip. They all were silent for a while but then started talking together at once which created a chaos and attracted a lot of stink eyes from the neighboring table.

"One at a time guys, please!", I said calmly.

"Why didn't you tell us before planning this?", This was Off.

"I'm not sure if I can model.", Mew was our model for the photo shoot.

"Have you guys thought of the budget and stay?"

"First of all, this idea was spontaneous and we knew you guys would agree especially after the mid semester exams. Mew, I think you will the most suitable as model otherwise Tul here can model with you. The budget and stay details were to be planned with you guys but someone here forgot to inform you about this trip.", I finished my monologue.

"So, Mild will be the only girl among us?", Off asked after a thought.

"Nope", Mild and I answered simultaneously.

"Who else is coming with us apart from my friend?", Mild asked me.

"P'MewNittha might come but New didn't ask yet so lets see.", I replied casually.

"That means even P'Mark will come?", Tul asked.

"Nope.", I denied firmly.

"You're taking my girlfriend but not me?", a voice came from behind me. I shut my eyes and groaned soundlessly. 

"P~", Mild started and I slowly turned around to face smirking P'Mark.

"P~, you can come-."

"Stop teasing them.", P'MewNittha said hitting his shoulder, "If you guys are not comfortable with him, he'll not come."

"If you're ready to leave your head hazer title behind and come you're always welcome!", Off said adamantly.

"Off!" "Jumpol!" "Tumcial!", Me, Mew and Tul said simultaneously. 

"Aow? I don't think I said something wrong."

"You didn't.", P'MewNittha agreed and P'Mark started laughing.

"I'm not sure if I can come but lets see.", he said smiling, "Anyways, Tay meet me after your college work is done."

"Yes P", I said before he walked away. 

"I hope its nothing tedious but all the best, I have class now so I'll leave first.", Mew said and left for his class.

"All the best man!", Tul said patting on my shoulder and leaving.

"We'll discuss about the trip later.", Off said before walking off.

"Come on otherwise even we'll be late.", Mild said collecting her books and packing them.

The rest of the classes passed by in a blur. I was feeling sleepy by the time the classes ended. I was prepared to go home and sleep but then I remembered that I had to meet P'Mark. I looked for him in the senior's classroom but he was not there. 

"Hey, may I know where P'Mark might be?", I asked a person from the hazer team.

"Yeah, he was in the club room little while ago."

"Okay thank you."

I walked to club room annoyed but it soon disappeared looking at the seniors being chided by P'Mark about something. He stormed out after he was done and saw me.

"Follow me."

I wordless followed him to a isolated classroom and we settled on one of the benches.

"Were you in a marching band in your school or high school.", he asked.

"Yes."

"Can you be the senior captain for the marching band?"

"What?"

"You heard it right, you're already experienced with how it works and maybe next year you can be the drum major."

"I would love to do that, Thank you P~"

"Cool, practice starts tomorrow morning."

"Okay"

"You were called early today for that only. We observed everyone and picked out the students this morning."

"Oh..."

"I have work, meet you tomorrow."

I drove back home in a daze. Everyone had already left for home and it was getting late. I got home and put my bag in living room and plopped myself on the sofa. I had closed my eyes but I realized someone gently tugging my head and putting it on their lap. It was like a warm pillow filled with feathers. I turned towards the person unconsciously and deeply inhaled. It was familiar smell but I couldn't put my finger on it. The started stroking my head and I fell in deep slumber. 

 

Chapter Text

New's POV

I was worried about P'Tay after he left abruptly but P'Mild sounded concerned. I was glad he got such a beautiful girlfriend {A/n: New doesn't know that she is not his girlfriend} The first time I met her she was a very friendly person. I got along very well with all of them. My thoughts had drifted while Earth kept on talking about something.

"Are you listening?", Earth asked me after he was done.

"Sorry, I lost you long time ago.", I said sheepishly.

"Not cool dude."

"What were you saying?"

"I was asking you if you want to group study for a while."

"Sure, my place?"

"Let's go to mine."

"Okay."

We started driving home on his bike while talking about our day. Earth kept on complaining about a teacher being too strict and giving too much work and I kept agreeing to all the thing he was saying. We reached home and settled on the dining table with our books spread out. Earth got me a glass of orange juice and settled beside me. 

"Do you know about the trip after our mid semesters?"

Earth choked on his drink and started coughing loudly. I patted on his back to calm him down. I was confused if it was a surprise for him or P'Tay had already told him about it. He calmed down after 5 minutes and asked,

"What trip are you talking about?", he asked shocked confirming my doubt.

"P'Tay didn't tell you about it yet?"

"Is he ever home to talk, even if he is he's always busy with his project."

"What project is he working on?"

"Making a robot I guess, anyways tell me about the trip, who all are going? Where are we going?", he started firing his questions.

"They are planning a trip for a photo shoot in Hua Hin. We'll go there for a couple of days. The guest list is still variable but it will be confirmed soon."

"Who told you about this?"

"P'Tay told me-", I was going to say today but I stopped myself. 

"You said we are going after mid semesters right?"

"Yup."

"Your birthday also come around that time so we can celebrate it there."

I had completely forgotten about the dates. I was glad they were planning the trip, I can spend my day with P'Tay.

"We can take some of our friends too."

"Maxi said he will be coming here for my birthday."

"Your friend Max Nattapol?"

"Yup. I hope we can invite him with us."

"Why not, anyways my brother doesn't tell me anything and if you ask he might allow."

"Stop being dramatic, let's study so our parents will allow."

"Sure."

We started studying and worked on homework given by the teacher. The first half an hour passed quickly then Earth started getting bored. He laid his head on his arm on the dining table and kept staring at me. I ignored him for a while but I started feeling shy so I covered his face with my palm.

"Look away."

"Why are you shy now?", his voice came muffled from underneath my hand.

"Its distracting me."

"Its okay to be distracted for a while.", his skin was warm and soft under my hand.

"Nope, not good."

"Okay.", I felt him pucker up his lips so I moved my hand away feeling gross.

I continued studying while he occasionally asked his doubts while solving the numerical. I heard the door click after a while and guessed it might be Tay. I glanced at Earth but he was in solving something so I excused myself and decided to check on P. I walked to the living room and saw his bag lying at the entrance. I walked further into the room and saw him sprawled on the sofa. 

I walked out and asked Earth for a Dohar  (a light weight duvet) which he got me from his room.

"Why do you want it? Are you feeling cold?"

"P'Tay is sleeping."

"Let him be."

"Okay."

I walked back and covered him up till the chin with the dohar. I had sudden urge to comb my finger through his hair and feel if they were as soft as they looked. I sat on the edge of the sofa and lifted his head to slide a pillow but he caught my leg and slept on it instead. I was taken aback for a minute but I settled down on the sofa to stop my heart from racing. Tay Tawan had rest his head on my lap and had fallen asleep. I knit my finger through his soft locks and combed them in one direction. He felt something and started moving. He turned towards my stomach and nuzzled his face in it while I was trying to suppress my laugh due to the ticklish feeling. His hair was disheveled again. I pursed my lips at him thinking that he might be awake. 

"What is taking-", Earth barged into the room but I looked at him and put a finger on my lips to tell him to stop talking, "so much for your time?", he completed his sentence softly.

"He fell asleep on my lap while I was giving him the pillow.", I replied softy.

Earth rolled his eyes and said, "Throw him on the sofa, he is a deep sleeper. He won't be up till dinner time."

"I'll be there in a minute go ahead."

Earth left the room muttering to himself while I shook my head at his nonchalant behavior. I went back to knitting my fingers through Tay's hair and combed them in different styles. He started snoring slowly and I smiled to myself. He had long lashes, a pert nose and his lips were slightly parted. I had a sudden urge to trace my finger from his hairline to his jawline but I stopped myself. I lifted his head off my lap and gently laid him on a pillow. I looked at him before leaving the room and did something I thought I would never do. I placed a chaste kiss on his forehead and sprinted away from the living room.

"Are you okay?", Earth asked me as soon as I walked into the kitchen.

"Yup, w-why?"

"You look red, do you have fever or did you catch the heat stroke?"

"No, I'm fine."

"Here.", he placed a glass of water in front of me which I gulped down and settled beside him. 

"Can you solve this for me?", he asked after a while.

I took the notebook from and started working on it wordlessly. I'm usually good with numbers but I got stuck on a step. I tried solving it in other ways with my pencil but it was hard. I felt someone staring at me so I turned and saw Earth staring at me dreamily. 

"Is there something on my face?", I asked consciously.

"Nope."

"Then, Why are you staring at me?"

"I was staring at your scrunched up face while solving the problem."

"Shut up and help me solve the problem.", I wrinkled my nose consciously again.

"Stop doing that."

"What?"

"Scrunching your nose like that."

"Then help me solve."

"Try substitution, if there are big terms substitute them with one term and retain them back in the end.", Earth gave a hint.

I then realized that I just had to cancel some terms to get the answer. I started solving the problem with a vigor while he continued staring at me. 

"Done!!", I exclaimed as soon as I was done.

"Thanks.", he took the book and started working on something else. We continued studying for a while and called it a day. Earth left for his room and I went to living room to check on P'Tay. He seemed to be in deep slumber snoring lightly. I thought of testing my luck for the second time that day. I walked towards him and kneeled to his face level. I bent down ever so slowly, our lips were centimeters apart but I was thinking of pulling back. I slowly placed a chaste kiss on his lips, they were slightly chapped from the lack of moisture but I could taste Tay Tawan for the first time. I suddenly felt his lips pout and felt him kiss me back. My eyes shot open and I saw his eyes were still closed. He was kissing in his sleep, I thought to myself and pulled away.

"Ummm Mild...", he murmured as soon as our contact was broken. It was like a bucket of cold reality on me. I got up and left without turning back.

I ran back home as fast as my feet took me. 

"I'm home!", I told P'MewNittha who was sitting in the living room doing her assignments.

"Wait!", she said.

"I'll wash up and come back."

I washed my face with cold water to collect myself and remind myself that I'm still off limits. I walked back to the living room and sat beside my sister.

"Are you born with such a gloomy face, baby brother?", she asked without looking up.

"I think so."

"Aow, but I saw a better face when you were younger."

"I'm not in a mood to listen to your teasing."

"So, what mood are you in?"

"What's for dinner?"

"Green curry, rice and side dishes."

"Okay"

"Mom dad said they'll be back soon so we'll have dinner together."

We both sat silently doing our things . I sat scrolling on my phone listlessly while she worked on her assignments and reports.

"P~", I called her after a while.

"Hmm?"

"What is love?"

She glanced at me and asked, "Are you in love?"

"I'm not sure that's why I'm asking."

"For me there are two types of love."

"Which are they?"

"Self love and love you give to someone."

"I know self love."

"Do you?"

"Yes"

"If you knew you wouldn't come sad everyday after watching your crush."

"How did you know?"

"I'm your elder sister and I know you."

"Newwiee baby, if it is hurting you, learn to let go.", my eyes welled up at her words, "I would suggest you tell him your feelings before letting go."

"I'm not ready to let go yet."

"No one is but I can't see you getting hurt and coming home everyday."

"I don't-"

"Newwiee, learn to love yourself before loving someone else."

"How did you know P'Mark was the right one for you?"

"It took us about an year to realize that and I'm glad that I invested a year to get to know him. Take your time and tell him about your feelings whenever you're ready."

"What if he knows already?"

"Does he feel the same way as you?"

"I think so?"

"Give him some time to figure out if he really likes you and I would suggest to keep some distance for a while and see if he really cares. I don't want you to get hurt anymore.", she said the last part a little sternly.

"Don't worry, I'll be okay."

"Don't sell yourself short."

"I can say the same thing about P'Mark."

"We are different-"

"Who is Mark?", P'Kay walked into the living room.

"Just a friend!", P'Mewnittha said quickly.

"He doesn't know yet?", I said mouthing the words and she shook her head slightly.

P'Kay looked at both us alternatively and walked away muttering something about siblings. My sister gave a huge sigh and ruffled my hair before walking away. I never thought I would be receiving relationship advice from my sister. It was a meaningful conversation. That night I fell asleep crying to myself again but this was going to be last time, I told myself.

 

 

 

Chapter Text

Tay's POV

I was very tired, I reminded myself for the nth time. The scene kept on playing in my mind like a broken record tape. The way his soft lips touched mine had woken me up from my slumber like I was some sleeping beauty waiting for the prince. His lips were soft against, my slightly chapped ones and they tasted like a little like lychee. I felt him pull away slightly and I pouted slightly to continue the kiss. There were no tongues involved but it was one of the best kiss I ever had. 

"Ai"New!!", I groaned to myself loudly throwing away my dohar. 

"Are you okay brother?", Earth walked in and sat on the couch opposite to mine.

"Yeah."

"Long day at college?"

"Yeah, had to run around a lot."

"Tay! Earth!", Mom called us from the kitchen.

"When did mom dad come?"

"They came while you were busy groaning to yourself."

"Aow!"

I got up and walked to the dining room. My parents were bickering over something while Earth was setting the table. I kept to myself the whole time during the dinner and returned to my room. I started working on the assignments but my kept on drifting back to the kiss. Was it really  a kiss? I thought about it again and I realized I shouldn't have taken Mild's name. I felt guilty and thought of messaging him but again I thought that I shouldn't have given him hope. My mind was a mess and I had almost typed him a huge apology message which I backspaced after reading it once. I ended up messaging him:

New:

-Don't forget to get the homework I gave you last time.

-Yes.

Just a yes, what was I suppose to assume from this? Is he angry? Disappointed? Sad? I slammed my notebook close and put away my phone to sleep over this. I twisted and turned around in my bed trying to sleep but the evening nap made it difficult for me to sleep. I didn't realize when I slept but I dreamt of New. It was a weird dream where he was walking away from me while I was trying to run behind him but never caught him.

"Are you okay?", Off asked the next day when he came to pick me up.

"Yeah.", I said weakly.

"You look shitty.", Tul said looking at me through the rear view mirror.

"Ai'Tul!"

"He is right though.", Off snickered.

"I meant sleep deprived."

"Had a bad dream."

"When are we going to discuss about the trip?", Off asked.

"Let's discuss about that on week end.", Tul replied.

"Yeah, I'll call everyone who is coming."

"Do you have practice?", Tul asked.

"Yeah, I'll see you guys in break with Mild."

"Sure!"

I got off the car as soon as we reached the university and rushed to the ground for practice. P'Mark smiled at me slightly seeing me come early to college. We started our practice and I saw two people walking in late. I wondered how bad P'Mark will scold but as they closer I realized it was P'MewNittha and New. I saw New from the corner of my eye, watching my every move but he left after greeting P'Mark. 

The rest of the day passed by in a blur of lectures and attending the extra circular activities. I messaged New before leaving college.

New:

-Can you pick me from college?

-Yes

Another short reply, I was had started to wonder if he doesn't want to meet and talk anymore.

-I'll wait near the gate. 

I walked out of the gate and saw him leaning on his bike casually. The people passing by glanced at him as they went by. He looked calm like the sea before the storm. He started feeling hot so his top few buttons were undone which showed his milky skin. I was watching him from a distance and a girl approached him. She said something and they started laughing. She kept glancing at his chest and checking him out which was pissing me off as the minutes passed. I walked upto them said,

"Were you waiting here for a long time?"

"Nope!", he smiled tersely

"Cool, then lets get going.", I said completely ignoring the girl.

"Nong may I get your-"

"I'm sorry P~ but I'm in hurry at the moment, excuse me."

We got on the bike and drove off in the direction of my house. I kept to myself the whole ride thinking if he had a girlfriend or if he is interested in anyone. I wanted to ask him about it but I kept it to myself. We reached home and settled with the books spread in the living room. I started explaining him the concepts but he seemed distracted. I ignored it for a while thinking he'll start paying attention but he kept on drifting away.

"What is the second last concept I explained?", I asked him out of the blue.

He looked at me dazed and answered something incoherently so I asked him again,

"what is the second last concept I explained."

This time he answered it confidently but in the end he faltered.

"What is up with you today, you are very distracted."

"Nothing P~"

"Are you sure?"

"Yes."

"Did you complete the homework?"

"Yes."

"Will you self study this concept?"

"Yes."

"Okay good then-"

"Wait no P~"

"You are saying yes to everything."

"Sorry."

"Anyways give me the homework to check and we will end today's session."

"But-"

"You're clearly very distracted today."

We sat there in silence for a few minutes and it started getting awkward. Earth barged into the room as soon as I opened my mouth to say something.

"New, should I drop you home?", Earth asked settling on the couch.

"Sure"

"I'll drop him, I have to go to the stationary store anyways.", I offered.

"Okay, I'll wait outside."

I quickly grabbed a jacket and keys from the dresser to follow New.  I walked out and saw them talking about something while laughing.

"Hop on.", I parked my bike beside him and he bid Earth bye.

An awkward silence prevailed over us, we reached and he was about to walk away but I grabbed his hand,

"New... um... about last time..."

He blushed slightly and said, "I'm sorry that happened, I know I shouldn't have crossed the line knowing that you have a girlfriend, lets forget about it."

Wait, girlfriend? 

"Mild?"

"Did I just wonder my thought aloud?"

"Yes."

"Mild is not my girlfriend.", I started laughing while he cocked his head side to side confused.

"Then why did you take her name?"

"I was confused if it was you or her.", I admitted sheepishly.

"You don't have a girlfriend?"

"No New, I don't, Mild and I went on a few dates but it didn't work and everyone knew we are good friends, I'm surprised you didn't know. So it was you the other day at home..."

His widened in realization and he turned to leave but I pulled him closer to me with the held wrist. I locked our eyes for the first time that day, the brown orbs radiated innocence of a different kind. This cheeks were slightly red due to close proximity. 

"Why do you make me feel things I never felt before?", I said softly searching for some answers while his ears started turning deep shade of red. He quickly pulled his hand away and ran towards the gate. 

"I'll see you tomorrow!", I said loudly enough for him to hear behind the closed gate.

I drove off to the stationary store to calm my nerves. New had opened a different door in my heart which I never knew existed. I didn't realize but I had started observing him slowly. I had never felt this kind of attraction to any other guy. I parked by bike outside the store and browsed notebooks and stationary section. Roaming around in stationary store calmed my jittery nerves. I picked a few essentials and drove back home. 

Later, that night I picked the papers New had left and while browsing them I noticed his scribbles on the edges. Almost every page had something scribbled in the margins but it was very small and messy to read. I took a closer look and it said: 

TTVxMLJ<3 and TTVxNTT? 

It took me about 5 minutes to understand that it meant Tay, Mild and New. It was followed by 2 lines:

Who's that shadow holding me hostage?                                                                                                              I 've been here for days?

I turned the page and the the lines continued:

Who's this whisper telling me                                                                                                                                       That I'm never gonna get away?

Wait, this sounds familiar and again I turned the page:

I know that they'll be coming to find me soon                                                                                                     But I fear I'm getting used to

There were only three pages but this seemed incomplete. I turned the page to look for more scribbles. I finally found one at the end of the last page.

being held by you

If only you knew that you are my Stockholm syndrome!

SHIT!! Does this guy need help? I then searched the line he wrote and it turned out to be a old song by one direction. No wonder it felt so familiar, it was one of the songs I listened on loop till I got sick of it. I had completely forgotten the starting but I remembered the chorus part, I wonder how did New know about this. 

I thought I liked New because I had no being with a girl for a long time but now I think I might be bisexual or gay. I didn't know how to deal with these kind of feelings so I did what I was best at, I slept on it. I fell asleep while thinking as the tiredness of the day took over me.

 

Chapter Text

Tay's POV:

New came over after school. I wanted to ask him about the notes but I chose to observe his behavior before dropping the bomb. He was smiling for no reason. I taught him the concept and he easily caught up with everything.

" I guess, you are grasping everything fast.", I said while choosing some numerical for him.

"No~ Phi."

"Um..., you can call me Tay, when we are alone.", I have practically known him all my life but we had never interacted like we did. I only knew him as my brother's bestfriend who used to hang out at our place occasionally. 

"Okay Te"

"You can call me that too", I smiled to myself at distant memory. 

"What happened?", He cocked his head from side to side and looked at me with his innocent beady eyes. 

"Nothing."

"Then why are you smiling?"

"I just remembered something."

"Tell me."

"Its nothing.", I chuckled looking at his slightly annoyed face.

"Then why are you laughing?"

"Do you remember the first time you called me Te?", he scrunched his nose after thinking for a while.

~ Flashback ~

It was a hot summer day and I was sitting under the fan wearing a loose undershirt and shorts. I was in 5th grade while Earth was in 4th grade. I was engrossed in reading a book and eating a watermelon which was dripping over me. 

"P~", Earth came running from backyard.

"What is it?", I asked without looking up.

"P~ Neww~ beaten up~", He was panting so I looked up and saw the cut on lip.

"Who did this?", I asked clenching my fist tightly.

"Come with me.", I started running and I was close on his heel.

Earth was a lanky kid back then therefore he easily got bullied from time to time. He lead the way to the nearest playground near our place. I reached there and was shocked at the scene unfolding in front of me. New was fighting with a senior. His lower lip had started bleeding too with a bruise which had started showing on the face. I ran to them and held New by his waist and pulled him away from the senior. 

New kept on flaying his hands and legs as I easily picked him. I leaned on his shoulder and whispered in his ear,

"Its okay, you're safe now. Calm down.", he stopped flaying his hands but he tried to free himself, "I'm not going to hurt you... calm down.", He then stopped struggling and went limp in my arms. 

"Why were you bullying the nongs?", Earth pulled New away from me as I approached the seniors. 

"They started it first.", One of the boys defended.

"P~, they took our ball and were not returning it, till we do something for them.", Earth explained from behind me.

"What did they want you to do?", I asked glaring at the seniors.

"They wanted us to...", he suddenly stopped and I turned around to see New squeezing his hand as if his life depended on it. It gave me an idea of whatever these bullies were expecting. 

"I'm going to report this in my school and tell my parents about this", I tried to threaten the seniors.

They didn't buy it at first but I took the name of the principle and they ran away. Earth could hardly bear New's weight so I walked back to them held him by the waist as he hooked his hand on my neck.  We walked back to our place and I handed them a ice pack each. 

"Next time, don't resort to fighting directly.", I started chiding them but Earth walked away, "Everything cannot be solved by fists some things need brain too.", I explained to the other person.

"Thank you P'Te...", New meekly looked up at me.

"Its Tay."

"Te."

"Okay whatever suits your vocab.", I gave up without another trail. Earth walked in with a first aid kit and kept it in front of me. He had already tended his wounds and was ready to play. I held New's face and inspected it from bruises. I picked an ointment from the first aid kit and applied it on his open wounded. Tears sprung in his eyes and rolled down slowly.

"You will feel better in a while.", I cooed at him while blowing on the ointment. He kept looking at me without big eyes and his cheeks were slightly red. I playfully pinched them and laughed at their softness. 

"Aye~", he groaned.

"You were just like hin few minutes ago and now you're complaining.", I continued laughing at him, "Nong Earth, take him with you to play games in your room."

"P, can we sit here with you?", Earth asked cutely pouting.

"Don't make noise if you want to sit here."

I laid back on the mat to continue reading my book while the other two did their own thing before falling asleep soon after. I kept my book down as it started getting dark. I stroked Earth's head and said,

"You little planet can cause a hell lot trouble na", I smiled at his sleeping figure of my little brother. 

"Hin", the name felt foreign but it meant rock and I was glad to know Earth has a friend like him to take care of him.

~End~

"Nope!"

"Okay." the slight disappoint in voice doesn't go unnoticed but before he could say anything I hand him the homework which I corrected last night. 

"I have checked it. There are some corrections so check them out when you go home."

I carefully watched his reaction as he turned the pages to look for corrections. He kept a neutral face till the last page but then he noticed what was written on the last line. His eyes widened realizing it was his handwriting. He swiftly turned pages but spotted something similar on every page. I was enjoying his little debacle with utter satisfaction. He closed the homework and shoved it in his bag before turning to me with a red face.

"Are you okay?", I asked feigning innocence.

"Yeah."

"You're sweating bullets, do you want me to switch on the AC?", I loved watching his ears turn redder.

"Its very hot today."

"Yeah...", I agreed with him smiling to myself.

I walked out to get some drinks but when I returned he was packing his bag to leave. 

"I prepared juice for us...", I looked at him confused.

"Oh thanks.", he picked a glass and quickly gulped down the content. I was left staring at his Adam's apple bobbing again. 

"Bye Phi!", he left before I could greet him.

The next few days passed by having tutorials almost everyday. I came home after a long day of practice with the seniors and saw Earth in the living room with his friends. I passed by and saw a few new faces but I didn't question much and walked to the kitchen to grab something to eat before the kids finish everything. I was looking for something in the fridge when someone said,

"Who are you?", a guy asked

I straighten up and turned around to see a small guy with beady eyes and hair falling in his eyes. He looked like an innocent kid at first but on a closer look he seemed a little stuck up.

"Who are you?", I cross questioned, "I know almost all Earth's friends but never seen around."

He hesitated for a minute but continued, "I'm Mix, Mix Sahaphap Wongratch and you are?"

"I'm Tay, Tay Tawan Vihokr-"

"What is taking you so long?", Earth barged chiding at the kid and then saw me, "Oh, Phi, when did you come home?"

"A little while ago, is this your friend?", I pointed in the direction of Mix

"Yes, we here for a group project and wait what are you holding in your hand!", he frowned at me.

"Nothing!", I quickly hid the can of coke he had bought.

"I got that for my friends!"

"Bye!", I picked a pack of chips on the way but Earth stood in front me.

"Get your own!"

"I'm tired."

"Oh please!!"

He tried to grab the packet of chips but I was fast enough to run away. I crashed into someone making the person stumble a little.

"Woah!", the person gasped as I held him in my arms. It was New, just a few inches away from me. I wanted to close the distance between us but I helped him stand instead.

"Are you okay?"

"Yeah and are you both done bickering?"

"I didn't-"

"Whatever, sometime I wonder who is the younger one among the two of you...", New continued.

"Oh come one, he took the snacks.", Earth whined.

"We can get more.", Mix said for the first time and I realized we should behave. I was going to hand back the snacks but Earth walked back to kitchen. I turned around to walk to my room when,

"Phi... what about about today's tutorials?"

"You guys have a group project, let's continue it tomorrow.", I winked at the last part and the tips of ears turned red. 

***

(Meanwhile in the living room)

"What took you guys so long?", Nammon asked as they settled down.

"Tay and Earth were bickering again right?", Gun asked picking his favorite snack.

"Yeah, as usual...", New smiled to himself

"Then why are your ears red?", Gun teased.

"Are you okay?", Mix asked concerned.

"Yeah, don't worry.", New glared at Gun, "Let's start with the project."

Everyone got to work except one person who kept glancing at everyone especially at Earth and New. He knew something was up between P'Tay and New as the tension among them was palpable. He was confused about the fact where Earth fit in this equation. He kept stealing glances at the planet while working on his part of project and this was noticed by another individual but even he decided to observe it silently. The only people engrossed in their own work were Gun and Earth. While other three were in their own world looking for a meaning in between the lines.

 

 

Chapter Text

A few days passed by in practice and teaching New. I almost forget meeting my friends after college. P'Mark was kind during practice but he made sure everything was perfect. I had finished my practice early and messaged New about the tutorial.

New: I'm going out with Gun, can we skip today? Sorry it was an unexpected plan.

Me: No problem, I'll see you tomorrow then.

I wanted to add message "text me once you are home" but I thought it would be too much so I backspaced it and called Off and Tul. Off was free so we decided to meet at the cafe near the university.

"Hey Peng!", I called Off Jumpol as soon as he entered the cafe. Peng was the nickname I used for him when we're alone.

"What's up?", he asked settling in the seat in front of me.

"Nothing much, today's tutorial is cancelled."

"Ah, that's why you called me?"

"No, I called because we have not hung out like this in a long time."

"Oh, shut up! I know you are not meeting your lover boy so you called me out.", he smirked.

"Your lover boy stole him from me.", I retorted.

"What? Whose my lover boy?"

"Do you think I'm blind?"

"What are you talking about Tawan."

"You know what I'm talking about Peng,"

"Well, I don't", his ears were slightly tinted giving away that he knew what I was talking about and I loved teasing him.

"I'm talking about a cute nong."

"Cute?"

"Yeah, he is tiny but with a great will power."

"Who are you talking about?"

"Stop playing around Peng and admit it."

"Gun Atthaphan."

"Finally."

"What about him?"

"You like him right?"

"Wait, we were on your topic with New why did we shift on mine?"

"There is nothing going on with New."

"Explains the constant tutorials and meetings."

"That is there because he insisted."

"Tay, just remember two things."

"What are they?"

"First, he is younger than us and second he is Earth's best friend"

"First point is noted but didn't understand the second one."

"I meant Earth might like him too, have you thought of that possibility?"

"Yeah and I don't know if I like New that way yet and about Earth, I'll keep that in my mind."

"Good, I don't want any of you in any tight positions."

"I understand, Peng, but I'm not sure if I like guys."

"I think its the matter of heart over mind. You don't fall in love with you brain, it just happens unexpectedly and you don't realize till you are way too deep in it."

"Like you feel for Gun?"

"Even I like Gun, I don't have a brother who likes him too."

"Ouch and I don't like New in that way."

"Whatever."

We started talking about mundane things like college and friends. He asked me about the trip but I told him that the whole group should discuss about it. We caught upon other things of your life while eating the ramen.

"Hi!", someone knocked on the table and I realized how engrossed we were in our conversation that we didn't realize someone approaching. I looked up and saw Joss Way-ar at our table.

"Hi Joss?"

"Yeah, my name is Joss.", he laughed lightly, "May I join you guys for a moment?"

"Sure.", Off moved over to my side and Joss slid in his place.

Joss was one the best player from the sports team and he was in the marching band with me. We didn't talk much as we both were from a different faculty.

"What's up?", I asked casually.

"I wanted to ask you a favor!", he used a pleading tone.

"Depends on the favor, if I can help or not.", I was unsure if it was a personal favor or someone asked him to do it.

"Can you let me court you?", he asked.

"What?!", Peng and I exclaimed together.

***

The next day, I walked out of my house to see a car waiting at the gate for me. I walked to it confused and the window slid down revealing Joss in the driver's seat.

"Get in!", he gestured at me and I quickly opened the door.

"You don't need to do this.", I said after settling down.

"I just need to do this."

"Whatever."

"When will your classes end?"

"Around 3 but I have practice after that."

"Oh, let's go to practice together and I'll drop you back home too."

"I'll come back on my own thanks for the offer."

"But the deal says something completely different."

"Just one dinner Tay Tawan."

"Fine.", I threw my hands up in exasperation.

It took us about 15 minutes to reach the university with the speed Joss was driving. We didn't talk much on the way. He stopped directly in front of my faculty building.

"I'll pick you up at lunch.", he said as I was about to get off.

"No need."

"24 hours Tawan."

"Fine!" I got off the car and he pulled down the window.

"See you at lunch babe!", he shouted before leaving behind dust as he drove away.

"Did he just say?", Mild echoed my thoughts coming out of no where.

"I'm not sure."

"I heard it.", she said curtly and started walking away.

"Hey! Wait up.", I called behind her to escape from all the eyes which followed me after what they heard Joss.

"So, you and Joss...", Mild trailed off

"Don't tell me you have a crush on him?"

"Obviously I do!"

"What? Seriously Mild? I didn't think you had such poor choices."

"Its the best choice, mind your tongue Tawan."

"Whatever."

"He is one the hottest guy in our college."

"Okay, I get it."

"So, what's up with you and him?"

"He is in the marching band with and wanted a favor."

"Woahhhh!! He asked you for a favor?"

"Yeah."

"Lucky."

"Its unlucky...", I muttered under my breath.

"Why? What's the favor he asked?"

"Nothing."

The first half of the day passed by in ignoring gossip about the morning drive and attending classes. It was lunch time before I knew it. I walked out of my building and saw Joss leaning on his car waiting for me.

"Why are you waiting here?", I asked approaching him.

"I thought you'll run away looking at me so I stood ready to catch you."

"Shut up! I'm not a coward."

"Yeah, I got that."

"Come on.", he started walking in the direction of the cafeteria leaving his car parked.

"Aren't we going out?"

"Nope"

"Then why have you parked your car here?"

"Is there a problem?"

"Whatever.", I followed him as we had started attracting attention. We walked to the cafeteria and I saw Off and Tul waiting at our usual table.

"What do you like?", Joss asked browsing the menu.

"Anything, I'll be at our usual table.", I tried giving him the money but he declined it.

"Hey guys!", I greeted them as I settled on our table.

"Hi... how was your day so far?", Tul asked smirking and I knew he must have heard it from Off.

"So far uneventful and I hope it goes on the way it is."

"I don't think so.", Off mumbled slowly

"Why?"

"Look.", Tul pointed his fork in a general direction of Joss walking towards our table.

"Is that Joss walking to our table?", Mew asked settling down beside Off.

"Yup.", Mild replied slamming her lunch on the table.

"Chill there tiger.", I smiled at her weakly.

"So about the trip...", Off started but was interrupted by Joss

"Here is your lunch."

"Let's discuss it some other time.", Mild muttered under her breath and everyone got busy eating their lunches. I kept picking at my food thinking about the reason I got myself into this mess when someone put placed a piece of meat in my spoon.

"Eat.", a stern voice reminded me. I turned to Joss and saw him staring at me expectantly.

I quickly shoved the the morsel with some rice. This gesture was noticed by everyone but no one said anything. Joss kept on placing food in plate occasionally till I was annoyed with it.

"Joss, you should eat.", I said politely and continued in a small voice, "You don't need to do this."

"I'm doing this because I want to do this", he said smiling.

"Okay, I'm done.", I pushed my plate away and walked to the washroom. This was frustrating, acting as someone's boyfriend in not easy. I regret saying yes to him now. I wonder if I would feel this way with New? Being with New never made me question my sanity rather it was opposite, I'm calm around him. I can't like any other guys.

I washed my face and run my finger through my hair. I ask my reflection the question which was lingering on mind for a while now,

"Why are feeling this way about New?"

"Maybe you're gay", the thought floated into my mind like my reflection answered.

"I'm not!", I talked back.

"How long are you going to be in denial?"

"As long as I can be!"

I walked out of the washroom and saw Mild leaning on the wall in front me.

"What is with Joss and you, I didn't know you guys were so close.", she raised her eyebrow.

"We are just friends, its a long story."

"I have time."

"Not now, Mild."

We started walking to our class. While walking, people started staring at me. It didn't bother me at first but as we got closer to the classroom they started giggling and commenting looking at their phone. I turned to Mild confused and she fished out her phone to check.

"Shia! Tay, you need to see this.", I grabbed her phone and saw a headline on social medias.

"Tay Tawan and Joss Wayar dating secretly?"

"two of the most hottest jocks are gay!"

The posts went on and comments were worse. I scrolled through them and read a few on the way. Mild pulled the phone from me and dragged me to the classroom. Some people asked me if the rumors were true while some gave me stink eye while walking. Thankfully, the teacher came in early and the lecture started.

Time went at snail speed for me. I tried paying attention to the lecture but my kept wandering to the events which transpired earlier. I couldn't wait to get out of the classroom and go home. I constantly kept checking the time. I ran out of the classroom as soon as the last bell rang. I walked out of the classroom and ran into Joss who dragged me to the college ground for practice before I could run away.

"What the-"

"Save it! P'Mark won't like it if we bunk."

Unfortunately, he was right. I had to follow him to practice the marching band for next hour or so.

Chapter Text

Joss drove me home after practice even when I insisted on taking the taxi. I walked in and saw all my friends waiting for me in living room except New. 

"Where is New?", I asked everyone in general. 

"We are here for quite sometime, Earth let us in and went out for a while.", Tul replied. 

"So...", Mew had his hands on his thighs with his finger knit and leaned forward with a serious expression, "Care to explain what's going on?"

"Are you guys dating?", it was Mild.

"If you thought we'll judge you on that, its your misconception. We'll support you no matter what.", Tul had a broken expression. I sighed and looked at Off for his share.

"Guys, lets go easy on him, he already had a tough day."

"Thanks Peng.", I was grateful he picked my mood.

"We are just...", Mew tried to pick the right word, "Worried for you."

"I know guys but it was already a long day but I'll quickly tell you how I ended up this way."

***

"I wanted to ask you a favor!", he used a pleading tone.

"Depends on the favor, if I can help or not.", I was unsure if it was a personal favor or someone asked him to do it.

"Can you let me court you?", he asked.

"What?!", Peng and I exclaimed together.

"Just for 24 hours Tay Tawan!", he continued.

"Joss..., sorry but I'm not gay."

"I know but I can't ask anyone else."

"Why?"

"Its complicated."

"Joss, I can't do this."

"Let's hear his story first.", Off cut the conversation short.

"Thanks Off.", Joss looked genuinely grateful, "There is a girl who has been stalking me like crazy."

"That's your problem not mine.", I interjected

"I know but the thing is she has been doing this for a month and I found out that her next target might be you. She has pictures of us all over her place. They all are taken in secret and without consent from either of us. I constantly get suicide letters and I'm sick of it."

"Why don't you go to police then."

"Done, she has a restraining order but now her friends do the work for her."

"Damn.", Off leaned back in utter shock.

"Report her for cyber bullying."

"I can't Tay, she is a student like us and we don't have the right to ruin someone's future."

"But-"

"He is right, Tay."

"So, you came up with the idea of fake dating?"

"Yeah, we'll just make a good public appearance."

"What if this doesn't work?", Peng asked.

"I'll report her for bullying and threating."

"I'm not comfortable doing this!"

"Just for a day, Tay, please!", he made a puppy dog face. 

"You're putting me in a tight position Joss."

"You'll figure out other things too.", Off reminded me of my current dilemma.

My feelings for New were confusing. I was trying to understand if was infatuation or real feelings. If these feeling were real then am I gay? Questions and doubts were clouding my brain after I found about the lyrics. I agreed to being Joss's boyfriend for my personal reasons too. 

***

I completed the story omitting out the part of me figuring out my own feelings but I guess they had caught on that because they all were still staring at me intensely. Mild was more agitated then others.

"I know there is more to that than you are letting us on.", Mew said like he could easily read through me.

"Is he coming back to pick you for dinner?", Tul was amused with the arrangement.

"Yes."

"You will stayover, right?", he continued.

"Maybe, why?", I frowned at his amusement.

"Tul!", Off said sternly.

"Don't even think about it.", Mild chipped in.

"Better safe than sorry.", Tul snickered and I realized what he was thinking about.

"Ai'Tul!", I shouted profanities at him and we started bantering. Everyone was involved except Mew who was thinking about something. 

"What is it, Mew?", I asked him after a while.

"Something is fishy here.", Mew said thoughtfully.

"What are you implying?"

The door bell rang before he could answer. Tul went to open the door and came back Earth, New and Gun. 

"Hii!!", Off greeted them excitedly to which Gun gave a perplexed look. 

"You all are together, great, Gun was looking for Off and New had some doubts in physics.", Earth explained.

"You were looking for me?", Off whispered to Gun as New settled beside me.

"I guess we'll have to skip today?", New asked.

"Yeah, I have to go out.", I said apologetically.

"Its okay, don't you want to change into something casual?"

"Yeah, I'll be back in a while."

I took quick shower and walked into my room with only a towel wrapped around my waist. I walked to the closet and picked out a shirt and dress pants for the dinner. 

"P~", New walked in without knocking and stood at the door with his jaw slack.

"Enjoying the view?", I smirked at him.

He walked in and closed the door behind him. His eyes trailed all over my body as he closed the distance between us. 

"Not only enjoying...", his breath fanned over my face, "I'm trying to savor it"

I gulped as he moved closer to my neck and sniffed audibly. 

"Umm... you got a great shower gel."

"You're way too forwarded for being a high school k-kid.", I stuttered in the end due to our closeness.

"I'll take that as a compliment."

"Why are you making me feel things like these?", I whispered softly but he caught them and smirked.

"I'm glad to know that I can make you feel things."

"Why are you here?", I asked clearing my throat and pulling on a shirt.

"Someone is here to pick you."

"Tell him, I'll be there in 5 minutes."

He pulled my hands away from the buttons of my shirt which I was buttoning up. 

"You're doing it wrong.", his fingers lingered longer than necessary letting the heat of his fingers seeped into my skin as he buttoned my shirt for me. All I could do was stare at his slightly parted lips and the concentrated expression. He smoothened out the collar for me and said,

"I'll tell him that.", he left me dazed. I badly wanted to taste those luscious lips but I controlled myself and quickly dressed up.

I walked down the stairs and almost everyone stopped talking. They gawked at the outfit I chose for today. It was one of the rare days I dressed up for the occasion. Joss and New had their back towards me and they seem to be in a deep conversation to notice me standing there. I cleared my throat slightly and they turned around.

"You look good!", Mild was the first one to compliment. 

"Thanks.", I smirked at the two out which one was drooling while other was glaring.

I wore a black dress shirt with khaki pants. I had undone the buttons which New had done for me leaving enough skin to show. New kept glowering at me while other started chatting.

"I think you guys will look good together!", Earth chipped in cheekily.

New turned to glare at him, "Its a temporary arrangement.", I corrected my brother.

"I don't mind making it permanent.", Joss said this and everyone started hooting. Mew looked amused with the things going on around him like he knew what was going on. 

"I'll see you guys tomorrow.", I started walking towards the door but stopped when Joss said,

"Yeah, it going to be a long night.", Joss smirked and I saw New fuming behind everyone. I thought of clearing before leaving so I told Joss to wait out. My friends followed him, leaving New. 

"Button up that shirt.", New said in a stern voice

"It looks better when its undone."

"Are you staying at his place?", New asked cooly.

"How does it matter?"

"Have you said yes to him?"

"Why do you care?"

"Will you both stop playing question and start answering each other.", I then noticed Mew watching the drama unfold, "I think I know what's going on here and I suggest you to sit and talk about this."

"Nothing is going on!", We both said in unison and walked in different directions.  

I walked out of the house and got into Joss's waiting car. 

"Drive!", I instructed and he obliged.

We drove fast through the city traffic. My mind kept drifting back to the New's behavior. That kid is going to be the death of me one day. He finally crossed the distance but why am I scared to close it completely? Why is it so hard to accept feelings? Questions kept bugging me but beyond those was an image of him close to me. 

 We finally pulled over at a place little outside the city. It was a cliff, where we could watch the sea. I got off the car feeling claustrophobic. 

"I thought you are taking me to a fancy restaurant or were you planning to kidnap me all along?"

"Wait for it.", Joss went behind the car and fumbled around for a while. He then started the car and parked it in reverse (The backside of the car was facing the sea) The boot was decorated in dim lights and a small dinner was set up with cushions thrown over for more comfort.

"Isn't this better than a fancy restaurant?", he asked

"It is.", It was quite romantic.

We sat side by side watching the wave lap the shore under us. It was the first few awkward moments.

"Joss, may I ask you something?"

"Sure."

"Why did you choose me? A jock like you could have dated anyone and you know I'm not gay so why?"

"I told you, I chose because of the stalker."

"What if I don't buy that?"

"Okay, so I wanted to make my girlfriend jealous...", he admitted it meekly.

"You have a girlfriend?", I was surprised with revelation

"Yes, I do and now a days I feel like she is taking me for granted. She always goes on about you saying Tay this and Tay that. I wanted to see what was the thing she saw in you. I decided to ask you out for a day to make her jealous and I think it worked well."

"This is not the right way to do it, Joss. I think you have talked to her and told her how you really feel. I think if she really loves you, she'll understand where you are coming from.", and I should apply this advice to myself too

"Yeah, I think you're right."

We sat eating in silence and occasionally sipped on our drinks.

"What is with you and that kid?"

"You mean New?"

"Yeah."

"Did he say something to you?"

"Yeah, right before you came, he told me stay away from you."

"Nothing is going on."

"Doesn't seem like it. The way he was glaring at me was scary okay.", he laughed humorlessly.

"Just a kid."

"He is well built for a kid."

"Do you mind if I ask who your girlfriend is?", I changed the topic.

"Mild."

"What?"

"Yeah"

"When did you guys get into a relationship?"

"One month after college started. I was courting her since our high school days but she kept brushing it off always. She finally agreed after playing hard to get."

"So, this setup, is made for her?"

"Yeah."

"Take care of her. She is my only girl bestfriend." 

Chapter Text

The next day, I walked down to the dining room and saw New having breakfast with our family. I walked past him and settled in my seat.

"What time did you come back last night?", Dad asked.

"Whom were you out with?", Mom was suppressing her smile as she asked. I could almost see New's ears perked up at the question from my parents. 

"I came in quite late and I was out with a friend."

"Hope you didn't drink and drive."

"No Dad, we just had dinner and came back."

"P'Tay, I think someone is waiting for you at gate.", Earth barged into the kitchen.

"You should have called him inside, Earth.", mom chided him and he left to call the person. 

A few minutes later, Joss walked in following Earth. 

"Swadee Krab Mae... Por!", He waied formally to my parents.

"Wadee...", they smiled at the newcomer, "Come on, have breakfast with us."

"I had breakfast already Mae. I just came to pick Tay."

"Aow, atleast have coffee with us.", Mom insisted.

"That will be great."

"Tay?", Mom looked at me expectantly and I got up to make coffee. Mom and Dad asked Joss about college and his major. I could hear them getting along well while Earth and New gave minimal inputs. I walked back with two cups of steaming coffee and placed one in front of Joss. I was about sip on mine when New started coughing. 

"Are you okay?", I asked placing my coffee in front of him. He took a sip while I patted on his back. He was completely red till he recovered from his coughing fit

"I think the food when down the wrong pipe.", he joked to lighten the mood.

"You scared us.", Mom said shaking her head. I looked at my mug with longing as I settled in my seat again.

"Mae, Por, I'm getting late...", I hugged Mom and bid them goodbye.

"Are you okay?", Joss asked after we settled in his car.

"Yeah why?"

"You look grumpy."

"My morning was dramatic."

"Figured that with your possessive boyfriend of yours."

"He is not my boyfriend Joss."

"Keep convincing yourself.", he shook his head and turned up the music.

Why was New acting like a possessive boyfriend from last night? Did I give him too much hope? Last night, the glares for dressing up and Joss saying New being possessive. I think it was time to start accepting the fact that I like him. I knew thing with Joss would never work. I didn't feel the attraction I had towards New for Joss. Why are these feeling so hard to figure out or am I overthinking about it? Should I just go with flow and see where it leads us?

"I can hear the gears in your head running overtime.", Joss interrupted my train of thoughts.

"Can I ask you something?"

"Sure, I'll try my best to answer."

"How do you know you like someone?"

"I think its different for everyone. It might come an eureka moment for some while for others it might be a result of...", he smirked at me, "Overthinking?"

"I'm serious here, Joss."

"Me too!"

"I don't think you are."

"You will know it when the time is right."

"I'm not a very patient person. "

"Love will teach you everything.", he chuckled.

"Whatever, people in love stink.", I wrinkled my nose at him.

"Oh, then you smell like frigging fish market.", he laughed.

"Shut up.", I got off the car as we reached my faculty

"Tell me if you want a lift back home.", Joss shot as I was about to walk away attracting attention.

"Join us for lunch.", I waved at him and walked towards a very annoyed Mild.

"What's up with you two?"

"Nothing, he offered me a ride this morning to complete those 24 hours."

"After last night, I was almost convinced you guys were dating."

"You know the back story already."

"That's what saved you.", she said under her breath but I caught that and smirked at her.

"Don't worry, I don't steal boyfriends from my friends.", I smirked at her knowingly and walked into the classroom. She followed a few moments later with an intention to hit me with her bag as I started laughing but our banter was cut short by the teacher. Mild mouthed later and settled in her in front of me. 

First half of the day was uneventful, Mild and I attended our lectures and practical.  

"Wrap up the filing process, make sure to get the metal piece in your next lab!", the instructor dispersed everyone,

"I hate this lab.", Mild started complaining.

"This is one of the major labs."

"Whatever, help me file the piece then."

"After, I finish mine."

We walked out of the lab and the campus was almost empty as majority classes were yet to conclude. Mild and I were walking towards the cafeteria when a guy came up to me and said,

"Tay Tawan, you're such a player! Aren't happy with the rumors going around college that, you're roaming around with your girl again?"

"What rumors?", I was confused by his harsh tone and pushed Mild behind me.

He scoffed and continued, "You can continue playing dumb, I don't know what Joss saw in you."

"Why are getting him in between?"

"You stole his girlfriend and now you're asking me why am I getting him in between, you're shameless.", and before I could react I felt his knuckles on my jaw. 

"Tay!!", Mild held me as I stumbled back a little. "You don't know anything, so stop making judgements.", Mild shouted at them. 

"Yeah, you are going to take his side only.", the guy continued glaring and I collected myself before grabbing his collar. 

"Don't pull her in this!", I said slowly, "You don't know a shit-"

"Tay!!" "Park!!", Two voices cut our conversation short. Off pulled me away while Joss pulled the other guy away.

"Joss, is he your friend?", I asked glaring at the guy.

"I'm sorry, Tay...", Joss started but Mild cut him,

"Joss, your friend has taken this too far."

"Are you okay?", Tul asked standing beside me.

"Yes, I'm fine."

"Let's talk in cafeteria.", Off suggested.

"I'll ask Mew to get ice pack from his department.", Mild walked ahead.

"What happened?", Tul asked after Mild was out of earshot.

"Mild and I were walking towards the cafeteria bantering about something and this guy came out of nowhere. He accused me of stealing Joss's girlfriend and then punched me without a preamble."

"Its swelling.", Off poked my cheek.

"I hope, my jaw doesn't get dislocated."

"Mew is coming with the ice pack.", Mild joined us again.

We all settled in the cafeteria with our food and me with a ice pack on my cheek. Mild gave a brief of what happened while Mew checked me for broken jaw. 

"So, who is Joss's girlfriend?", Mew asked the obvious question.

I stared at Mild as she wriggled in her seat uncomfortably, she glanced at me and I mouth gestured her saying, "You or I?"

"I'm the girlfriend...", she admitted meekly and everyone turned to stare at her even Mew was surprised.

"When did it happen?", Tul asked.

"A month after college started."

"Woah, it been like 2-3 months, isn't he a little too possessive?", Off asked.

"Are you talking about yourself or him?", I smirked.

"I don't have anyone to be possessive of yet."

"Yet... you say... that means someone is on the way.", Mew smirked at him.

"Stop diverting the topic guys.", Tul interrupted

"You only want to know the gossip, Tul.", Mild chided and we were back to bickering. Joss dropped by our table later to ask about my condition. He apologized to both of us but she was still angry at him. We dispersed after our break and second half of our college started. The lectures went by slowly and the marching band practice started. It was almost going to end when Tul and Off barged into the auditorium.

"Tay!!", Tul shouted my name as he couldn't spot me.

"What is it?", P'Mark was annoyed at the interruption.

"Swadee krab P, we need to find Tay right now.", Off explained urgently while Tul looked around for me.

"I'm here!!", I raised my hand from far end of the auditorium where I was folding the flags. 

Tul rushed towards me, "Earth is trying to reach you for a long time now."

"Why?"

"I don't know but it sounded urgent, call him back immediately."

"Okay, wait outside, I'll get my phone."

I excused myself and went to the locker to collect my bag and phone. I walked out of the auditorium while calling Earth. He picked up almost immediately and next thing he said shocked me. I walked towards my friends dazed.

"What did he say?", Off asked looking at my pale expression.

"New and Gun got into a fight some bullies and now they are in the police station."

"What?!", They both exclaimed.

We rushed to the car wordlessly and Tul took the keys to drive. Off was as shaken as I was, his hands started shivering in worry. It took us 10 minutes to reach the police station in the fastest speed. Earth was waiting for us outside. I walked to him and he hugged me tightly.

"P~", he almost started sobbing. I knew he was very scared. 

"Tell me what happened...", I asked him gently.

"I don't know, I was not at the sight when it happened. I heard it from some students and I rushed here to check. It turned out to be true. Those two are not ready to talk. Gun answered a few questions but New is very stoic."

I balled my hands into a fist to suppress my anger. "Calm down, we are here now, Tay and Off will talk to the police.", Tul explained gently and we walked into the police station.

New and Gun were sitting in a cell while other bullies were sitting in an adjacent cell to them.

"Swadee krab Officer.", I waied at the officers, "I'm here as their guardian."

"Those two are kept there because they are not telling us the exact thing that happened. They might be the victims but they6 are not talking."

"Can we talk to them?", Off asked.

"Officer, I assure you that it might not be their fault. Those bullies are from my college and they have a bad reputation in college too."

"We cannot leave them on your word. We'll need a statement from them before leaving them."

Off was asking Gun about the things that transpired till then. 

"Please, can you let them out of the cell, they are just high schoolers.", I pleaded.

"I can't unless they are ready with the statements."

"Let them out.", other officer who walked but their cell ordered.

"Officer Great!", the first policeman saluted to his senior. 

"The shorty is ready to explain.", Officer Great replied.

They were released and Gun tried to explain the story from the time he entered. He had only the bullies saying something mean to New while grabbing his collar to hit. New then had taken down 3 of them down in self defense while Gun took 2. The statements were taken with documents signed.

"You both are granted to leave as victims but I don't want to see you around anymore, is it understood?", Officer Great said sternly. 

"Yes sir.", they said meekly and we walked out. 

Earth grabbed New and Gun into a hug as soon they saw us. Tul didn't try asking details after looking at my expression. 

"Tul, please take everyone home, I'll take New home later.", I said in a stern voice which made the latter jump a little. 

 

 

Chapter Text

New:

"P-", Gun started but was cut off by Jumpol

"Save that explanation for me"

"I'm not obliged to tell you.", with that being said Gun sat in the car

"Don't be too harsh on him.", Off said before following him in the car.

"Listen to what he has to say...", Tul patted on Tay's shoulder before leaving.

Earth stood beside me but Tay glared at him.

"I'm staying with him."

"He will sleep over tonight.", Earth reluctantly walked to the waiting car.

Tay turned to me after everyone left and glared at me while I hung my head. The adrenaline from before had faded away leaving me exhausted and tired. My lips quivered but I bit them to keep myself from crying. 

"When did you eat last?", he asked finally.

I looked up at him shyly, "Morning."

"You didn't have lunch?", He got an edge to his voice again.

"No.", I admitted weakly.

He grabbed my hand and dragged me to a tuk-tuk. His hold on wrist almost left a bruise but it was nothing compared to other bruises. I don't know what was I thinking before hitting that guy. All I could see was red fury when he said those things. I groaned to myself thinking about it.

"Is it hurting?", he asked gently. 

"I'll be okay after an ice pack."

"Who started the fight?"

"I did."

"Why?"

"I don't want to talk about it yet.", I looked at the city passing by.

"Did they... bully you?"

"No!", it came out louder than intended.

"If you have any problem in school, you can tell me about it.", he was talking like a parent.

"That was not the case."

"They were students from our university, right?"

"Yeah."

"Why did they visit you?"

"Can we go to the park?"

"Which park?"

"The one near our place."

"Okay, Let me pick some things on the way first."

The tuk tuk stopped at a place and Tay left to buy the things he wanted. I rested my head on the frame and closed my eyes. I felt the seat beside me dip with his weight when he returned. I wanted to open my eyes but I felt tired. His hand snaked around my head and gently rested it on his shoulder.

"Its dangerous on that side.", he murmured and I smiled to myself

"New..., we are here.", he shook me awake. I adjusted myself to the surroundings and looked around. We were at the park and Tay was waiting for me to get down. He paid for the ride and we walked to the silent park. I sat on the swing while he settled on the bar beside it.

"Tell me now."

I started recalling back on the day's event.

***

Gun and I had bunked our last lecture to try out the new candy place which had opened near our school. We were walking back to school through a alley when three seniors blocked our way. We ignored them at first and continued walking but they kept pestering us by hooting and calling names.

"You shorty there, you're P'Oab's kid right?", one sneered.

Gun was ready to turn around and punch him but I squeezed his shoulder to calm him down.

"keep walking.", I whispered.

"P'Oab has been asking about your whereabouts."

"If he wants to find me, he knows the place."

"He sent us this time."

"If he wants to meet, he can come on his own. I don't entertain thugs."

"What did you just say, you little-", I caught the fist which was going to land on Gun

"Hands off."

"Where did you get this snow white to protect you?", the second guy asked.

I scoffed shaking my head and dragging Gun away. 

"Wait, you're Tay's new pet right?", this time Gun caught my arm. 

"Dude, you have no idea what a mess Tay has caused. He is always trending with a new scandal in the university.", he continued telling his friend. "Today, Park went to teach him a lesson but Joss stopped him."

We were walking ahead while they followed us talking about Tay. I tried to keep my cool but my patience ran short. 

"I heard he slept with that couple-", (BAM!) a punch landed on the face of the guy who was speaking shit. 

"What did you say?", My brain stopped working and all I could see was red. He staggered a little but got his footing again.

"Newwiee... don't...", Gun tried to coax me.

"Let me hear it again."

"I said Tay Tawan Vihokratana is a playboy and -"(BAM!) another punch landed in stomach this time, he doubled over while he friends came for me. Gun intervened and a full fledged fight started which was broken by police siren. We were about to run away but the police caught everyone and took us to the station. 

No one calls my Tay that, no one! I'll not allow that. I don't care if he likes me or not, all I know is he is a good person and I would not tolerate this! These thoughts kept me occupied the whole ride to the station. Gun was as scared as I was of the consequences. He decided to call Earth who can call his brother so this wouldn't go till our parents. As soon as Tay walked in, a sense of relief washed over me but it was soon replaced by dread looking at his thunderous expressions. 

***

Now looking at him all calm listening to the whole thing relaxed me a little. I looked at him carefully for the first time now, I saw even he had a bruise on his jaw which was turning black and blue. My anger was resurfacing.

"Why do you care if they were talking shit about me behind my back?", he asked calmly.

"It wasn't true and I couldn't tolerate it.", the last part came out meekly.

"New, you cannot go around picking fights just because they talk shit. They are called thugs for a reason and by picking fights with them you're acting like one"

"I wasn't thinking."

"People will talk shit but it's upto us how we react to it. Just so you know, Joss and I are just good friends, I was helping him make his girlfriend jealous."

"You always go around helping people but you never look at people close to you who need you or like you!", I burst out my frustration. 

He was taken aback with my choice of words, "Who are those people?"

"You are a very dense person."

"What?!"

"You never acknowledge my feeling."

"When did you tell me those feelings?", he was looking into my eyes when I said,

"Now! I like you P'Tay, I don't know when it started but I can't keep it anymore, I like you, Te."

A long silence prevailed after that, my words kept ringing in my head and I hung my head low.

"Hin...", he said gently which compelled me to look at him. He held out a packet of jelly candy, "You didn't eat anything."

I stared at the packet reluctant at first but then grabbed it. I popped a few candies and held the packet close to me afraid Tay will take it away from me. He didn't answer it and neither did I probe him. I felt better after letting it out.

"How old are you to hold it like that?", Tay asked chuckling losing his strict demeanor.

I stared at him innocently chewing on the candy. 

"For a 17 year old, you sure act like a 7 year old Hin."

There, he said it again. I first thought it slipped but now I was sure he said it. The distant memory came back, there was a similar situation back then and I remember him chiding us later. I smiled to myself at the memory. 

"So, you remembered."

"Yeah."

"Hin, don't get into such unnecessary fights, please.", he was kneeling in front of me with his hands on my knees, "They will affect your future and I don't want you to ruin it."

"Yes Te.", I finally remembered his nickname.

"Promise me, you won't get into this."

"I promise."

"Good, lets go home and get some proper food and medication for your wounds."

"Okay but you didn't answer yet?"

"Give me some time, please?"

"Hmm."

We started walking towards his house with me munching on the candies. I almost finished the whole packet by the time we reached home. 

"Go wash up, we'll have dinner together.", Te said opening the door. We walked into the living room and saw P'Off, P'Tul, Gun and Earth sitting on the sofa. 

"What took you so long?", Earth asked after he noticed us.

"Nothing. I got satay for everyone and lets have porridge.", Te said walking towards the dining room, "Gun, can you help with the porridge?"

Gun followed him meekly knowing it was his turn to explain everything but P'Off didn't look very happy with the arrangement. He sat on the sofa scowling at door where Gun left. 

"Earth, can you lend me some clothes."

"Sure."

We walked to his room and he rampaged around his cupboard. 

"What did P'Tay say?"

"Nothing much, he just asked how did this happen.", I said pointing at my cheek which was bruised.

"He could have asked in front of everyone."

"I didn't open my mouth in front of the police, do you think I would have said anything in front of everyone?"

"True. Try these", He threw a few t shirts at me but they seemed very tight. 

"I want something loose."

"Let's check P'Tay's cupboard."

Te's cupboard was neat and well kept. Earth picked a random black t shirt and a pack of boxers. I took a quick shower and wore his clothes. They had a faint smell of Te mixed with detergent. I smiled to myself as I walked to the dining room when I heard,

"Why is Oab looking for you?", Te asked sternly and Gun jumped slightly at his tone.

"I don't know P~", Gun said meekly.

"You better stay away from him. He is not good news."

"I know."

"If he troubles you again let me know."

"Yes P~"

"Go set the table and call others."

I wondered how Te knows about Oab and Gun. Not many people know they were in a relationship and why was Oab looking for Gun? These questions were floating in my mind when Gun opened the door.

"Newwiee!", he was back to his cheerful self, "Call other for dinner"

"Yes.", I walked away and called everyone to the dining room. 

"Are you done being Dad for everyone?", P'Off asked scoffing as he settled beside Te.

"He was just worried.", P'Tul covered for him while pouring out porridge for everyone.

"They needed a piece of my mind.", Te said looking at both of us sternly.

"Stop scaring them P~", Earth saved us. 

The rest of the dinner passed by bickering about our day. No one asked about the prior events. P'Off and P'Tul decided to stay over as Gun and I were staying. P'Off declared he, Gun and Earth will share the room which left us three in Te's room.

P'Tul feel asleep as soon as his head touched the pillow. Te leaned over towards me and said, 

"This T-shirt looks good on you than it ever did on me. You can keep it, Hin."

"Thank you P~"

 

Chapter Text

Tay

The confession kept on playing in my head for next few days. The day after the incident, New and Gun were taken to the hospital to check for fractures but thankfully there were none. They both spent the day at home, chilling. Off and I dropped by at New's after college. 

"How are you you guys holding up?", I asked them.

"Feeling better.", Gun replied 

"Did Oab call you?"

"No"

"Tell me if does."

"Yes P~"

"I'll talk to him, if needed."

"Yes, I'll ask for it.", he replied shyly.

"Did you get a notice from school?", Peng asked.

"No.", Gun replied curtly.

I wondered what was with these two. They were always on the edge around each other. I wondered if they had met before or had some kind of history. 

"We'll go to school tomorrow.", New broke my thoughts.

"We'll pick you both up on our way and drop you home.", Peng said before I could say anything.

~~

The next day, during lunch break Mild asked me about my conversation with New. 

"Come on, tell me what did you talk to him in secret."

"I took him away because he was not ready to talk about it in front of others."

"Come on, Tawan, spill already."

We had reached the cafeteria and everyone was looking at me expectantly and I knew they were not going to leave me without an explanation. I looked around once and sighed.

"He confessed.", there was a gasp, I was sure it was from Peng but others kept staring.

"Aren't you all going to anything?", I asked

"What was your reply?", Mild asked rolling her eyes.

"I didn't answer him." 

"Why?", Tul and Peng asked at the same time.

"I'm not sure."

"Dude not cool.", Tul started but was cut off by Mew.

"Tay is right"

"Mew!", Mild exclaimed.

"Its no use saying yes if he is not sure. They both will be hurt in the end. Tay, you better think about everything before treading forward."

"That is what I'm trying to figure out."

"How?", Peng asked.

"I'll ask him on a date, a proper one. Try to get to know him more before making it official."

"Finally, you're talking some sense.", Tul spoke while eating his lunch, "Mild you owe me now."

"Fine. You win."

Others look at them confused but Mew understood it first. He explained it while chuckling to himself, "Tul and Mild had made a bet on the day you went out with Joss. Their bet was on who will confess first, Mild had dibs on Tay and Tul had on dibs on New."

"Aow!", Peng was excited.

"My life is not for you guys to bet on.", I scolded lightly but I realized Tul knew me better than I gave him credits for.

"Ah but I won."

"Do you guys want to go out for dinner after college?", Mild asked.

"I have to wait back in college.", Mew said pouting.

"I have practice.", I replied.

"Let's do it over the weekend then.", Peng suggested.

"Yeah, maybe till then someone would say yes.", Tul raised his eyebrows at me.

"Not sure.", they all laugh at my expense.

~~ 

"Te!", New shouted bringing me back to present.

"WHAT?"

"You were lost, I was calling you for a while now.", he pouted at me

"Sorry, what is it?"

"What were you thinking?"

"Nothing"

"Oh come on..."

"I was thinking about past few days..."

"What about it?"

"Mild was talking about a new cafe in Siam which serves different types of desserts."

"Oh...", did I hear a twinge of disappointment?

"I was wondering if we could go check it out after you done with today's homework."

He looked up at me and blinked for a few moments but finally agreed. He quickly finished his homework and we had dinner before leaving on my bike. It took us about an hour to reach our destination due to the heavy traffic. 

"What do you want to order?", I asked him after five minutes of contemplating over the glass display with the menu.

"Why is it so hard?", he pouted. I took out my phone and clicked his picture just when he turned.

"Show me!"

"Nah.", I quickly locked my phone, "Choose the desert quickly before I change my mind."

He got scared and started thinking about which to buy, "I'll have a mint chocolate shake."

"That's it?", he took so much time just to order one drink?

"Yes."

"Wait for me at the table, I'll place the order and come."

He walked away as I placed the order. Thankfully it didn't take them long to prepare the dessert, I collected it and bought it back

"You took your time-", he stopped when he saw the tray in my hand, "I just ordered a shake"

"I ordered the rest.", There was a waffle with ice cream and chocolate sauce with chocolate frappe. 

"Wait, let me take a photo first!", he pulled out his phone and clicked a picture to post. I took out my phone to take video when,

"Don't attack the waffle! pour the chocolate sauce first.", such a messy eater. He then dug in the food and let a satisfied sound after the first bite.

"Umm... this is good.", he said. 

He carefully cut the second piece took a bite. I saw the cream which was stuck on his lips and had the urge to wipe it away with the tissue but his expression was too blissful to tear my eyes away from him. I had never him in this light, the kid which was hidden behind the facade of an adolescent. His eyes were closed and lips were pursed tightly as if the food might fall if he opens it. 

I finally reached out to those luscious lips with a tissue to wipe away the cream. He opened his eyes just the moment I was about to wipe.

"What are you doing?", he asked wide eyed.

"You have some ice cream here.", I wiped it with a tissue while he kept staring, "You are such kid while eating."

"That's how you enjoy it, wait.", he cut another piece of waffle and got it near my mouth, "Taste it and you'll understand."

I took the bite looking at him and suddenly realized it was like an indirect kiss. I usually didn't like waffles but this one tasted better than the ones I had before. I don't why but looking at him was giving a queasy feeling in a good way. 

"May I taste this?", he asked sticking his tongue out from the corner of the mouth eying my frappe. 

"Sure.", I pushed the glass towards him.

"This is nice, try it.", he pushed his drink towards me. 

I took a sip of mint chocolate shake and it was indeed refreshing. I realized we had another indirect kiss. I usually don't like sharing my food with people but with him, I don't know why, I had let my guard down. New made another moaning kind of sound after drinking.

"You got a sweet tooth."

"Yeah."

"You should get your teeth check regularly then."

"I don't like dentists."

"I won't take you out to eat sweets then."

"Will there be a next time?", he asked expectantly.

"You thought it was one time thing?", I was slightly disappointed.

"After our talk on the play ground, I thought you'll avoid me.", he played with the frappe cream without meeting my eyes.

"Why would you think that?"

"You didn't answer."

"I-", he cut me off before I could say anything.

"Its okay, you can take your time as long as we go on dates like this."

Date? Was this is a date? Is how a date is suppose to be? I smiled at the thought of having more dates like this. 

"Isn't this a date?", he asked.

"You can consider it as one."

He stuffed his face with another bite of the waffle, while I kept sipping on the minty goodness. It was almost 11 by the time we were done with eating. We ordered another plate of waffles which we shared. 

"Did you call home to inform that you're going to be late?", I asked.

"Yeah, I had dropped phi a message before."

"Do you have a curfew?"

"Not-", he was cut by his phone ringing. He quickly answered it greeting, "Wadee Krab P'Kay..."

His brother seemed angry because New's face was downcast and I could almost hear the other person's angry voice. I walked towards my bike to give them privacy. New followed five minutes later visibly crest fallen.

"Everything okay?", I asked him concerned.

"Yeah, P'Kay was paranoid."

"Do you want me to talk to him?"

"No, I'll explain him everything once we are home."

I got on my bike when he startled me with a shriek.

"Its 11:11! Wish!"

I saw him clasp his hand and closed his eyes for a wish. I wish for you to be happy always, were the only words that came to mind. He opened his eyes and I looked away just in time. He got on the bike and we started driving home.

"What did you wish for?", he asked leaning over me and resting his chin on shoulder.

"If I tell you, it won't come true."

"Ah, you are right."

"Are you going to tell me yours?"

"Nope"

"Do you wish everyday?"

"Nah, it just happens occasionally."

A silence prevailed but his chin was still intact. I could feel him breathing slowly. It was a breezy night and we had taken off our helmets as got close to our neighborhood. I was driving slowly so we could enjoy the breeze through our hair and face.

We reached his place and parked the bike outside. We stood there awkwardly waiting for either of us to say goodbye. He was about to say something when someone came barging from behind.

"You took your time! I told you to be home in 15 minutes!", his elder brother came shouting.

"P'Kay, calm down.", P'MewNittha followed, "Oh, Tay!"

"Swadee krab Phi", I greeted them both.

"He was with you?", she asked while the older kept glaring at us.

"Yeah, we finished the tutorial and had dinner at home. I had taken him to Siam for dessert and got caught in the traffic while coming back. Sorry, I got him back late."

"No problem, as long as he is with you, its okay.", she clarified.

"What do you mean?", New asked with his ear tinged red.

"I thought you were loitering around with that gang.", P'Kay spoke up.

"No, Phi!"

"Tay, thank you for dropping him home.", P'Kay turned to me, "You should drop by for dinner sometime with Earth."

"Yeah, you guys didn't come over in a while.", P'MewNittha added.

"Thank you Phi, we can arrange that soon.", they left us alone.

"I'm sorry...", New kept looking everywhere except at me

"Don't be sorry, I can understand them. umm... so...You enjoyed the night?"

 It was my turn to be shy after asking such a awkward question. He just pulled me into a hug mumbled a yes. He was different from my exes but we fit like a jigsaw puzzle which were meant for each other. 

 

 

 

 

 

Chapter Text

New started hanging out at our place almost everyday after the date. The group plan for the weekend was canceled because everyone was busy. New spent the weekend at our place with us working on assignment of the week then I settled down with my project. We again went out for deserts on Sunday afternoon and spent the rest of the day walking around Siam when Earth joined us. The date lost its meaning as Earth tagged around everywhere. 

Monday rolled in with practice and schedule for the day. Off, Tul and I dropped New and Earth to their high school on the way to our university. We had invited Gun he declined saying he'll go later. The morning dragged by slowly, the lectures started getting tedious. The only time I looked forward to were lunch breaks and after college tutorials. 

"Ugh, this is so boring.", Mild complained as soon as we exited the classroom.

"Did you take the assignment?", I asked her

"Yeah, go get it printed."

"Uh... buy me lunch."

I took printouts from our lab and walked to the cafeteria. I easily found our group but there was a stranger sitting in my place. I couldn't make out who it was from a distance but as I got closer I realized who it might be. 

"See, the person you were waiting for is here.", someone said and he turned around.

"Swadee Krab P~", New greeted me.

"Wadee, what are you doing here?"

"I had come to meet P'MewNittha but she was busy."

"Oh"

"Why? Did you think he came all the way just to meet you?", Tul asked in a teasing me and everyone started laughing.

"No~"

"We know it already, Peng.", Off carried on.

"Whatever, I'm hungry."

New pushed a plate towards me. I smiled at him and our banter started. Gun joined us after a while and he looked sad.

"Are you okay?", I asked him and Off glared at me. I guess he wanted to ask that question.

"Yeah."

"Are you sure?", Mew asked taking his wrist and examining it. Gun flinched audibly and New looked torn in between. 

"I should have been there.", New mumbled.

"Why didn't you tell me?", I asked him.

"It was just a talk.", he said meekly.

"Talks don't happen this way.", Mew said grimly

"Can someone explain what's going on?", Off asked. Mild and he looked lost on us. 

"Gun met Oab to talk and it didn't go well.", Tul explained.

Off, Mew and Mild look at him in surprise, "I know a few things."

"Gossip queen.", Mild muttered.

"No, we all grew up in one neighborhood. Oab was a friend and his attraction didn't go wasted.", Tul rolled his eyes scoffing.

"He changed.", Gun said softly.

"He did.", Tay and Tul agreed simultaneously. 

"Save the story for some other time.", New cut in before the flashback could start. 

"Yeah.", Gun's signature smile was back on.

"You guys left me alone!", my brother shouted from behind us. He came and settled beside New. 

"We didn't leave you alone, you went off somewhere.", New explained laughing.

Earth had him in a headlock and everyone was bantering. I looked around the group and it suddenly felt very complete. Mew stared at me reading my expression. 

"Feels perfect?"

"Too good to be true.", I admitted

He chuckled to himself and Mild asked him what we were talking about. He replied nothing and the banter continued. The lunch time was over and it was our cue to return to our departments. Mild and I received a message of cancellation of further lecture. 

"What are you guys going to do now?", Mild asked the nongs who were with us.

"Going back home maybe?", Gun looked at other two.

"Talk for yourself, I'm taking Newwiee on a date!", Earth declared and an awkward silence settled.

"I have practice, I'll leave first then.", I excused myself.

"Don't be out too late.", Mild told them and followed me.

"I'll come with you.", Gun followed soon after.

"Even I want to come.". New's voice floated but Earth told him something and dragged him away. 

I secretly wished for New to follow but it was not right on my part. I had not given him a proper answer. Our relationship was still too volatile for expectations.

"New really likes you Phi.", Gun said falling in step with me. I glanced at him and then at Mild who was nodding.

"It is very obvious, you brothers are really hard headed.", he continued.

"What?"

"You guys are hard headed.", Mild said.

"No!"

"I know where Earth gets his denial traits from.", Gun was scoffing.

"Are you coming with us to get punished by the head hazers?"

"No, I just want to see you guys practice."

"Fine."

Our practice was held on college running tracks. P'Mark was late due to his classes. There were a few people there so we decided to start our marching practices. Soon others joined and P'Mark came in.

"How long are you here for?", he asked.

"Quite a while now."

"Lets do one last round and disperse."

"Sure."

The last round of practice was fast drill. It didn't take a lot of time to complete. P'Mark announced things for the next day and left for the bleachers. I was walking towards Mild and Gun when I noticed two things; one, New was with his sister and he kept glancing my way. Second, Oab was heading towards Gun.

"Oab.", I called him before he could reach Gun and Mild

"Tay."

"What are you doing here?"

"I'm here to meet him.", he said pointing at Gun who was behind me.

"What's the occasion? I thought you guys broke up and you even sent your boys to mess with him."

"Tawan, I didn't send them, trust me. I would never do something that would hurt him."

"Then who did?"

"I don't know, okay?"

He was about to walk past me but I held his arm, "Leave him alone, please? You have done enough damage."

"I know that but that's for us to decide.", he said coldly.

"P'Tay!", Gun and New came to us.

"Gun, can we talk?", Oab asked. Gun nodded and left with him to talk in the bleachers. 

"How was your date?", I asked him smirking.

"If you think following your crush everywhere with your bestfriend is date, dream on!"

I scoffed, "What if the best friend and crush are the same person?"

He glanced at me and shook his head, "Nah, they are not the same."

"So, you here to meet P'MewNittha?"

"No... I mean Yes.."

"You decide your answer till I come back.", I chuckled to myself walking away.

A quick shower later, I walked back to bleachers to see Off, Gun and New talking about something. 

"P, can I join you guys to study today?", Gun asked as I approached the group.

"I'm not a proper tutor.", I shook my head, "But if you want sure."

"So, lets go now that its decided.", Gun said happily.

"I came in Peng's car, today so we'll take that."

"Aow, I'll come on my own then."

"I never denied a ride.", Peng who was unusually quiet today replied. They had a intense staring game which Gun lost as he agreed to ride with us. We dropped Tul, a message and left for home. 

New and Gun got to study as soon as we reached home. Peng sat playing games on his phone, cursing occasionally. I was about to work on my project when Gun asked,

"What is this project about?"

"Its a character model. I can't tell you the details yet.", I smiled to myself.

"He has been making it for half an year now.", Peng said from behind, "I'm surprised he could actually pull it off with his clumsiness."

"I might be clumsy in anything but not this.", I said proudly.

We again fell into a comfortable silence of working together. Earth walked in after a while stomping,

"Why did you leave me alone in the mall?", he barged in on New.

"I got bored!", New was equally annoyed.

"But you promised."

"I came with you."

They kept on shouting at each other while we watched them from the sidelines wondering about what might have happened.

"I don't want to see you anymore, get lost!", Earth shouted.

"Earth! That is not the way you talk to someone.", I intervened.

"I'm not here for you anyways.", New shot back.

"New, calm down."

"P, you always take his side."

"Go, to your room and talk about this later. When both of you are ready to talk."

Earth walked away still fuming. I turned to New questioning.

"I don't want to talk about it."

He got busy solving a problem again. Gun coaxed him to talk and they kept on whispering among themselves. 

"Are you guys done?", Peng asked them which startled them a little.

"Yeah.", Gun answered curtly. 

"I'll see you guys tomorrow.", New said collecting his things.

Peng jumped on me as soon as they left,

"I'm telling you, Earth likes New!"

"We are not yet official Peng."

"I know but dude, you should talk to New about him."

"I'm not sure about my feelings what should I ask him?"

"Then what if you loose this chance?"

"I won't", I said meekly but in the corner of my mind I was scared of this possibility. 

"Look Peng, let's get on thing cleared here, if you both end up liking the same person. The ball will roll in his court to choose. I think New likes you a lot and he will choose you but then things will get awkward with his bestfriend as he is also your brother."

"Why is it so hard Peng?"

"It is not hard, the timing is wrong."

We talked for a while and he went back home. Earth came down for dinner after mom called him. The dinner was a silent affair with Earth still in a sulking or thinking mood.

"Everything okay, Earth?", Mom asked him.

"Yeah."

"How are things are school?"

"They are good Por."

"That's good, I hope you studying well."

"Yes."

"Tay, are you still thinking for changing the major."

"No, Por. I'll continue with this one."

"That's great, you can work in our company for an internship."

"There is still time for that, Por."

"Hmm.."

"Mae, Por.", Earth called them when I was washing the dishes in the kitchen. 

"I have a two day sports camp in school tomorrow, so I'll be staying there."

I didn't know about this, maybe I should ask New or Gun about this. Mom continued asking many questions before giving her permission. They finally agreed after extracting all the details. 

 

 

Chapter Text

The sports camp for Earth meant even New and Gun would be their. It was their last year before college starts so they were there making memories. They also had a competition in two days. Mom and Dad were on a business trip as usual which meant the house was to myself for the weekend. I decided to enjoy myself and complete the project. 

I woke up from an afternoon nap and scouted the fridge for something to eat. I dropped a message to gang if they were free for barbeque.

Peng: your wife is not with you this weekend?

Tul: So is yours, Jumpol

Mew: I'm free, where are we meeting?

Mild: lets get this done before Mew cancels :P

Tul: Yes.

Mew: you know how it is.

Me:

 We know, how about the place in near uni?

Peng: the one we always decide on?

Me: 

yes, which was cancelled.

Tul: what time?

Mew: about an hour?

Mild: I'll need more time.

Tul: I bet you'll take a hell lot of time for make up.

Mild: I'm sure you won't have a bath.

Peng: Guys!

Mew: XD

Me: 

Take your time, I'll be there in an hour.

Mew: Me too.

Peng: Me too.

Tul: I'll try

Mild: Hey, I was going to say that!

I logged out of our line group and took a quick shower before leaving for uni. I reached uni in about an hour thanks to Bangkok traffic. 

[Me: Anyone here?]

I guess I was the first one to arrive. I decided to wait in the coffee shop near by for other. My phone chimed as I was about enter.

Mew: I'm here, where are you.

Me: 

Aow, I'm at the coffee shop near the place.

A few minutes later, Mew walked towards me. 

"You came early?", he asked

"Yeah, didn't have much work so I thought I would come here."

"ah! the weekend vibes are different."

"What are you doing here early?"

"I had some work in college so I'm here since morning."

"Damn, you are overworking yourself so early..."

"Lets order first.", Mew walked ahead to look at the menu.

We stood there contemplating on which drink to take.

"Americano or Expresso?", Mew asked.

"How about Boba with cocoa?"

"I thought you didn't like sweet things."

"I'm not fond of them but in drink I prefer chocolate ones."

Mew chuckled, "I didn't think you as an expresso person."

"I survive on coffee and water only."

"Doctors thing, uh, expresso?"

"Yes, Cocoa"

We laughed at the nicknames and paid for your drinks before settling in the window seat.

"What have you thought about New?", he asked.

"I want to make it official but I'm still dealing with my feelings. I have been in a relationships with girls before and now falling in love with guy feels different."

"It's not different, you are just not used to it."

"Yeah."

"That time I stopped you because I want you to be sure before you fall into something serious. New seems pretty serious to me."

"Have you faced anything like this?"

"My first was an eye opener for me.", he chuckled darkly.

"You mean..."

"I'm Bi rather I'm exploring."

My mouth formed a O and everything fell in place how he understood everything. Mew was our age but he had some experience with relationships before. 

"I don't like labels, they make me compromise."

"They give a definition too."

"They do but then things get complicated."

"This makes me curious for your story."

"EXPRESSO! COCOA?",  someone called and Mew stood up making me surprised.

"Are those our drinks?", I asked.

"Yes.", he chuckled walking away.

I pondered over what Mew said and then came up to a conclusion of accepting things. He walked back with two drinks and settled again.

"Your story!", I was excited.

"Some other time for the starters sort yours out."

"I think I'll make it official soon, maybe on the trip?"

"When are we going on the trip?"

"It's Tul's  birthday in a few weeks, I was thinking we could celebrate it there."

"That will be great."

"Yeah, I'll make it special."

"You better do, you are making him wait for a long time already."

Our conversation took a turn and we started talking about the university. Mew was an interesting person to talk, I learnt a lot about him for instance he loves singing. He wants to compose a single before making it into album. 

Off was the first to arrive followed by Mild and Tul who came together. We walked around the market before settling inside a small restaurant for the barbeque. 

"Do we get soju here?", Tul asked.

"You want to drink? I'm not going to take care of you after that.", Off said raising his hands.

"Meat and alcohol are good.", Mild pitched in.

"I'll be the designated driver then.", I offered as I didn't want to get drunk yet.

"Beer or Soju?", Mew smirked.

"Both!". Tul and Off said simultaneously.

It took a few shots of beer and soju mixed to get everyone drunk. Mild and Tul were muttering to themselves while Mew was trying to pacify them. Peng was calm but his flushed red face told a different story. They then decided to go to Karaoke before heading home. We easily got a room in the nearby bar. 

It was almost my turn to sing when the phone rang. Why would my brother call this late?

[P~] his slurred voice floated as soon as the call was connected.

"Are you drunk?"

[Yes.]

"Do you want to pick you up?"

[No.]

"What happened?"

[Can come pick Newwiee, he looks a little sick?]

"Okay, I'll be there."

I walked back in to see Tul and Mild bickering about something while Mew was lost in a sad song and Peng is trying to vibe with him.

"Party's over, lets go home.", I announced pulling everyone out one by one.

"Hey Joss?", I said as the line connected.

[What is it, Tay?], his voice was hoarse.

"um... can you come to get Mild? She is kinda drunk."

[On my way, send me the address.], he voice suddenly sounded alert. 

"Get a car and drop Mew back home on the way."

[Okay, wait for me there.]

"Who was it?", Peng leaned on me heavily. 

"Joss, he'll come here to pick Mild and Mew."

It was 1 am till Joss arrived. He looked like he walked out of the bed and straight to his car. 

"Why are they all wasted and you aren't?", Joss asked as soon as he got out.

"It turned out to impromptu Karaoke night."

"Thanks for taking care of them."

"They are friends, please drop Mew home."

"Cocoa, I can go by myself.", Mew was going to complain but Joss cut him short,

"Its on the way anyways."

It was a rare occasion that I got a car today. We piled up the car and drove the high school. I stopped at the back gate near the gym wear they were crashing. 

"Why are we here?", Peng asked groggily rubbing his eyes. Tul was fast asleep in the back.

"I have to get New before we go ahead, I'll be back in a few wait here."

I walked out towards the gym. The door was ajar so I let myself in. The locker room was filled students sleeping. A little further down the hallway was the swimming pool. The smell of chlorine intensified as I got closer. 

There were about three people lounging around the edge. I walked closer to see there were four people instead. New sat leaning on the diving platform with Gun and Earth was lying on the edge of the pool with another guy who looked like he had dozed off.

"Earth!", I said sharply, "What the hell is going on?"

"Phi!", he sat up dazed and other looked at me confused.

"You guys have a competition na?"

"Yes.", they said meekly.

"It was my idea phi...", New said.

"I don't care whose idea it was! What if you guys get a hangover tomorrow?"

"We didn't drink much.", Gun sounded sober.

"Why did you guys drink?"

"We were celebrating Gun's pre birthday.", the other guy said.

"Aow, Pre birthday?", I sighed and continued

"Let's go home, I'll drop everyone here tomorrow again."

"No phi! I have to report at 6am, I can't come.", Earth denied followed by the other guy.

"What about you guys?", I turned the other two.

"Newwiee and I will come with you. I'm not a part of the competition and New's round in late in afternoon."

"Okay, Earth and..."

"Mix.", the other guy said meekly.

"Both of you go back to the dorms. Otherwise I'll tell your shenanigans to the coach tomorrow."

"Stop threating us, I'm the captain.", Earth slurred.

"Pirapat! Do I need to remind you I was a captain before you?"

"Going phi.", He walked dragging Mix who waied before leaving.

"What a nuisance.", I shook my head and walked towards the exit.

"The car is not that far, I hope you guys will be able to walk for a bit."

"Yes phi." 

New and Gun follow stumbling and swaying. They settle in the backseat while I drove us back home. I tucked Off, Gun and Tul in Earth's bedroom and took New with me. The latter was stuck to me like a baby bear. I finally place him on my bed and he curled up on one side. I decided to take a shower before sleep. 

I came back after taking a quick shower and saw New sitting on the bed looking lost.

"What happened Hin?"

He stared at me dazed and flung his arms at him

"What?", he then patted at the place beside him.

I sat beside him and he nuzzled his face on my sleeve. I ruffled his hair and placed a kiss on his forehead before laying him on the bed. I was about to walk away but he pulled me back and mumbled,

"Sleep here, Te."

I settled beside him, "You aren't drunk right?"

"What do you think?"

"I'm not sure."

"Then even I'm not sure."

"What are you sure about anyways.", I teased him but then he rendered me speechless.

"I'm sure about liking you"

"You and your smart mouth.", I shook my head.

"This smart mouth is good, wanna try?"

"Ugh... sleep.", I nudged him slightly.

He then turned his head towards me as I felt his heated gaze on the side of face. I turned away from him and he kissed my nape startling me. I almost jumped off the bed in shock.

"What?", I asked annoyed turning towards him.

"You looked away.", he pouted.

"Yes! Its time to sleep."

"I know."

"Then sleep."

He closed the distance between us and pecked on my lips. Before I could react his lips started sucking on mine. He bit my lower lip gently for access. I opened myself and our teeth grazed. I pulled away slightly and shifted our position. Now he was lying on the bed while I hovered above him. My eyes roamed over his face and finally settled on his lips. I kissed the mole on his nose before taking his luscious lips in mine. 

I don't remember how long we made out but he fell asleep in my arms later.

Chapter Text

The next morning, I woke up feeling stuffed in warmth. I felt something warm holding me. I wanted to push it away but the grip was very tight. I woke up with a start when I realized it was New. I touched his forehead and neck it was warm. He had caught fever and today was the competition day. 

I jumped out of the bed and got a bowl of water with towel to wipe him. He shivered as I wiped his neck and body. It was flushed red and I started getting dirty thoughts of what all could- get a grip Tawan, I chided myself and continued wiping. 

"Where does mom keep medicines?", I asked myself looking through to the washroom cabinets. I walked to the their bedroom and found the medicines. I walked into Earth's bedroom and saw Tul curled up on the floor. Off was spooning Gun who was in a curled up in a small spoon position. I smiled to myself and walked closer to them to check his temperature. Thankfully he seemed fine. I was about to check Peng's temperature when he opened his eyes and glared.

"I was just checking your temperature.", I chuckled at him shaking my head.

"Why?", he mouthed looking drowsy.

"Sleep, I'll wake you up when breakfast is done."

I walked to the kitchen to prepare breakfast. It didn't take long to prepare some porridge for the sick and the hungover. Peng walked down after a while.

"Whose sick?"

"New."

"When did we pick him?"

I turned around and gave him a stare, "When you were so drunk that you couldn't stop mumbling babi."

"What?!"

"Yeah, you kept mumbling babi in your sleep. I helped Gun to put you and Tul to bed. He knows the rest."

"I know."

 "Help yourself with breakfast, I'll take this to New.", I said picking up the tray I prepared.

"Thanks."

"Wake Tul and Gun too."

"On it."

I opened the door to bedroom and saw New sleeping peacefully. I threw open the curtains and windows for sun and fresh air. 

"New...", I sat on the edge of the bed and tucked a thermometer to check his temperature. It beeped quickly showing his temperature to be 100F. 

"Newwiee..", I called again gently and he stirred. He looked at me groggily and then around taking in his surroundings.

"What am I doing here?", he asked clutching his head.

"Earth told me to pick you. Do you have a headache."

"Its throbbing."

"Can you stand up?"

"Yes, I'll be fine."

He got off the bed and walked into the washroom to freshen up. I quickly cleaned up the mess of my clothes from the couch and put it in laundry basket near the door. The books and snacks scattered were put properly with the all the equipment for the project. He came out after a while and sat on the couch. 

"How are you feeling?", I asked as settled down.

"Weak?"

"Have this.", I placed the food tray in front of him, "and rest up for a while."

"But I have a competition in a while."

"You are dropping out of it."

"I can't!", New burst out.

"We'll talk about it after you finish that."

New pursed his lips and looked away sulking, cute, I thought to myself but quickly dropped the smile and stared at him sternly. 

"Its not store bought, come on taste it."

He then reluctantly took a spoonful on congi and made a face at its taste.

"Its tasteless."

"Such a baby.", I picked the spoon and tasted it myself. It was a little bland but it was right for the sick people. I picked another spoonful and blew it for him. He was shocked but took a bite anyways. The whole bowl was finished in no time. I gave him the medicine to reduce fever. Just then Gun walked in flanked by Peng and Tul.

"Are you sick Newwiee?", Gun sat on the edge of the bed.

"Hungover?"

"He had fever but he'll be okay after some rest."

"What about the competition then?", Peng asked.

"He will have to drop out obviously."

"I can't.", New snapped

"Well you don't have a choice."

"I said I'm fine and will be okay"

"Which part of the statement do you not understand?"

"You don't know how important it is for me."

"Enlighten me."

"This competition is important."

Tay rolled his eyes and was going to retort the statement was cut off by Peng, 

"Tay, you're getting a call."

"New, if you are sick please-", Gun started but I walked out of the conversation to attend the call.

It was a call from P'Mark. He asked me to report to college for costume fitting. I walked back in after the short call.

"I have to leave for college.", I announced walking to his closet to pick out the uniform, "Peng and Gun please don't let him leave till I'm back."

"Roger!", Peng mock saluted.

"Okay."

"You know I'm right here!", New complained from the bed.

"Yeah, it was for you too. Tul, can you come with me?"

"Sure, give me five."

***

Tay and P'Tul left me with Off and Gun. 

"You know he means well for you.", Gun sat on the edge of the bed.

"I'm fine Gunnie!", I used this nickname whenever I wanted to get something done from him.

"Not going to work this time. You should have thought about this before jumping into pool drunk."

"Gunnie, you know Earth na... he was being competitive."

"He was drunk."

"Whatever."

"Don't you whatever me mister."

"Enough now..", Off pulled Gun away from our glaring competition.

"Listen to your boyfriend, Gunnie.", I teased him.

"He is not my boyfriend!"

"Whatever floats your boat."

They walked away leaving me wrapped in blanket which had a faint smell like Tay. I sat there contemplating my next move. I felt my phone vibrate on the side table. I picked up to see 5 missed calls from Earth, 3 from Mix and some from Nammon. The coach had texted me the details of my entry and starting time. He also messaged,

[be here in time or you'll lose your only chance.]

I held the blanket tightly and sniffed it. I'm sorry, I mumbled into it thinking of saying it to Tay. I quickly sneaked down and saw Gun and Off in a deep discussion in the living room. The bike was still here. I drove to school as fast I could. 

***

New reached right in the time. They declared Earth as the winner of butterfly style swim race. The contestants for the next round were told to warm up and get ready. New walked into the locker room and saw his team mates stretching. 

"Thank god, you are here!", Nammon came to pat on his back.

"I had to come, sorry I'm late.", he replied. 

New quickly changed into the suit and got ready with the cap and eye protection. He stood under the cold shower and felt slightly dizzy. The shower felt too cold for him. He walked out unsteadily and leaned on the wall for a minute. After regaining his composure he walked out confidently. 

On the other side, Gun had called Tay to inform him about New's sneak out. Tay didn't have time to be furious,

"Come to school immediately. Whoever reaches first will stop him from entering the competition okay?"

"Yes, we are leaving."

The competition was about to start in 5 minutes. The contestants were told to wait on the diving stands on stand by. The whistle blew and anomalously the swimmers dove. The first round, till the other end went smoothly with New leading. The flip dive after that sucked out New's energy and he started feeling heavy but he knew he could not stop. He kept on swimming to end it for once. He reached the diving stand again and the whistles again blew. 

It took all of his energy to pull himself out of the water. Earth stood there holding a robe for him. He gratefully accepted it as they waited for the result. The third prize goes to some other kid from a different school. 

"The second prize for 500m freestyle goes to...", the announcer dragged, "New Tithipoom Techaapaikhun"

He walked upto the podium to accept the trophy and bouquet. He turned towards the audience and saw smiling Earth and very calm Tay. He forced a smile for the picture and walked down the podium. 

"Its okay, at least you tried.", Earth consoled him hugging.

"Thank you.", New smiled timidly.

"You did great.", The coach stopped by to pat on his back.

"Thank you coach."

"So much for second place.", Tay huffed in the background as soon as the coach was out of earshot.

"I-", New didn't want to argue. He suddenly felt agitated with the taunt so he walked away.

"You could have been kinder.", Earth turned to his brother.

"He had fever last night", his brother replied curtly

"What?"

"He had a fever of 100F. It had not reduced in morning yet this fool came to swim."

"So what? You don't know his reasons! Maybe you should consider others feelings before talking.", Earth walked away saying that.

"What was this?", he asked Gun turning around.

"You should talk to Newwiee about this. I understand your concern phi but he also had his reasons."

"So, I'm the bad guy now?"

"I'm not saying that."

"Leave it. I'll go look for both."

Off observed the whole thing and shook his head as his peng walked away. 

"Peng can be very clueless sometimes."

"Just like you.", Gun added smirking.

"Aow, I'm not clueless"

"You are!"

Tay walked into the changing rooms to look for New but it was filled with contestants for the next round. He walked passed them to the shower stalls which were fairly empty. 

"New, are you here...", he didn't get a answer but heard a whimper somewhere close by. 

The whimpering got louder at the last stall. He threw open the curtain and saw New crouched down holding his head under the shower.

"What-", he was burning up with fever again.

Tay pulled him up and switched off the shower. Wrapped him up in a towel and carried him out bridal style. He took the back exit and directly started walking towards the car. Earth and Off saw him approaching.

"What happened?", Earth asked panicking.

"He has got fever again.", Tay explained panting as he placed Newwiee in the back seat before getting in from other side. 

Off and Gun got in the car and started driving.

New then held his chest in pain and groaned. Headache and chest pain with fever were serious symptoms of something. Gun asked Off to drive them directly to the doctor. 

Tay helped New into a t-shirt and some pants which he had picked on the way out. They reached the University's hospital as it was the closest one available. The nurses quickly took them and called for a doctor. A few minutes later, the doctor arrived to check on New.

"Any family member here?", he asked after diagnosis.

"Me", Tay followed the doctor out of the room.

"We need to run a few test on him. How did he get this high fever?"

"He is a swimmer, he had a competition today. He must have been practicing for this for many days."

"Okay, they sound like symptoms of mild pneumonia or viral infection. We'll run a few tests here and put him on an IV drip."

"When will he be discharged?", Tay asked concerned.

"Complete the formalities and let him finish the drip."

"Thank you doctor."

Tay walked to the main reception to collect the form when P'MewNittha walked to him.

"Tay?", she called him.

"P~", he was shocked.

"What are you doing here?"

"I... um... P~ the thing is.."

"Who is sick?"

"P.. umm... new-got-fever-after-the-competition sorry."

"Why are you sorry about it?", she asked shaking her head, "I know him he must have overdone himself again."

"Yes, phi.", he felt responsible for New as he stayed the night with him.

"Which room?", P'MewNittha asked.

Tay quickly told the room number and followed her. Tul and Earth were there by that time. 

"I think you guys should go home, instead of waiting here.", Phi suggested, "He'll be discharged after the drip so I'll take him home."

"Okay Phi...", everyone walked out and peng pulled at my shirt to follow.

"Phi, may I stay with him till he wakes up?"

"Sure, you can come with us."

We sat in awkward silence for a while. Mew dropped by to check on New as this was his department. 

"Thank you.. Tay.. for taking care of him."

"I was there..."

"He is always babied in our family, that's why he is so stubborn...", she explained, "But he is going to get an earful by P'Kay for this stunt."

"Aow Phi, he said he had his reasons to go for the competition."

A few moments later, P'Kay barged in worried.

"Is he okay?"

"Yes, don't worry, lets talk outside.", Phi took him out.

New's hand twitched and I knew he was awake.

"They have left.", I whispered.

"I'm still scared to face your I-told-you-so face."

"I'm over that."

He glanced at Tay finally, "careless kid."

"Why am I on IV?"

"Just rest for a while."

An hour passed by and the drip was finished. P'Kay kept glaring at New occasionally but he got a mellow look again. The ride way back home, P'Kay kept on nagging New about his carelessness. Tay almost pitied him but then he was also wrong. The tests for pneumonia had thankfully come negative in the end. 

 

 

 

 

Chapter Text

A few days later, New started feeling better. The practice for marching band went on vigorously as the deadline for the end of the hazing activities neared with the annual opening for football matches. Tay got busy with practices which resulted in less time for tutoring. 

New then decided to drop by the university to meet Tay during his practice. They usually drove home together. Earth also had started being clingy towards New. One day, he decided to follow him to the university. They both sat in the bleachers watching the practice when Earth asked,

"New, can you answer my question honestly?"

"Hmm... depends on the question."

"Are you still my best friend?"

New snapped his head towards Earth, "Obviously, why don't you see me as one?"

"No"

"Why?"

"We are not being honest to each other."

New puts away his books and now fully turned towards Earth who had a faraway look. 

"Do you want to tell me anything?"

"Do you?", that caught New off guard be decides to reply honestly.

"Yes."

"What is it?"

"I like someone, Earth."

"Do you like him whole heartedly?"

"Yes."

"That's good."

"Now, your turn."

Earth glanced at New for the first time and smiled.

"I'm in a dilemma."

"Okay... big word..."

Earth scoffed and continued with a distant look again, "I like two people..."

"Okay..."

"I love of them for a long time and I know ours will be a perfect story just when I was ready for the next step, I got attracted to someone else."

"Aow..", he chuckles.

"Yeah, laugh at my expense..."

"Its funny how you are capable to love two people at once."

"Why not?"

"Earthe... its not love for the first person if you can like the someone else."

"Aow."

"Once you are in love, you love that person whole heartedly. You don't look around and like someone else."

"You make me sound like a play boy."

"Aren't you one?"

"Nope"

"Okay."

"I'm not a play boy Newwiee."

"Whatever floats your boat best friend."

"What should I do now?"

"I think you should confess to your love and see they feel the same way."

"I don't think it will work."

"Why not?"

Because its you dummy, Earth wanted to say it out loud but instead he said, "I know it will not."

"Fine.. then... write down your feeling maybe?"

"I'll try, thank you Newwiee... you are the best."

"That's what best friends are for.", New walked over to hug Earth.

"If you feel things, share them Earthe.. I'm always here to listen."

I wish I could share everything, Earth thought to himself hugging New back.

***

I walked in on my brother and almost boyfriend having a moment. I cleared my throat once and they both looked up at me smiling rather creepily.

"What are you doing here?", I asked Earth.

"I'm going home with you."

"I didn't get a car."

"Aow, then I'll come with P'Off or P'Tul."

"Suit yourself."

I walked away picking up my duffle bag which was place between them. I came back after washing up and saw New standing at the entrance.

"Why are you waiting here?"

"I was waiting for you..."

"Where is Earth? "

"Gun came and they left with P'Off."

"Aow... but we had to discuss the trip."

"When are we going?", he asked excitedly.

"Probably next week, we can celebrate Tul's birthday there."

"Even Gun's birthday is next week."

"Aow... lets discuss it today then."

I quickly opened my phone check the message and smiled at my nickname by Mew. He had replied saying it was the same cafe we had met last time. 

I looked up and saw New scowling at me, "What?"

"You are smiling creepily."

"Nothing.. come on, everyone is waiting for us."

It didn't take us long to reach the cafe. Everyone was almost there except us. Mew took everyone's order for a long discussion.

"The trip finally!", Mild started.

"Do you want to go to Pattaya or Hua Hin?", I asked.

"I think Hua Hin will be better because Pattaya will be a long drive.", Off said.

"Yeah, Tay will avoid driving which leaves only Mew, Off and Me.", Tul gave me stink eye

"I can drive for a while...", I offered.

"Not reliable.", Off  said.

"Okay"

"Then Hua Hin, it is?", Mew asked.

"Yes!", we said unison.

"Okay, I'll take care of accommodation then!", Tul offered.

"How?", Earth asked.

"I'm a architecture student, I know people who can lend us a villa for a couple of days."

"Woah... perks of having an architect.", New shook his head.

Just then someone called out, "Orders of Cocoa and Expresso are here."

I glanced at Mew and he just nodded. I got up from the table to fetch our order while others looked at us confused.

"Long story but those names stuck...", I heard Mew say before I walked away.

"Okay, so whose car are we taking?", Gun spoke up for the first time.

"Mine!", Tul, Off and Mew offered.

"We'll only take SUV's, the highway may be good but off roads can get dodgy.", Mild said

"Then its Mew's and Tul only.", I continued, "With that being settled, what should be the theme of the photoshoot?"

Everyone looked blank at the obvious question. Finally New spoke up,

"How about freshie theme..."

"Explain."

"Student fashion theme for the freshers in Uni. If we are lucky we can collab with a local brand and promote their clothes."

"Do we have enough followers for that?", Gun asked.

"P'Tul and P'Mew have enough followers for a promo and with good photography, it'll be great."

"Well. then, I know a right person who can give us clothes.", Off said smirking.

"Who?", I asked.

"Arm."

"Do we have to take him us then?", Earth asked

"Maybe his assistant or friend will join."

"Okay, so the total people will Tay, New, Off, Gun, Mew, Mild, Earth, Arm and Me!", Tul counted.

"Can I invite a friend too?", Earth asked meekly.

"Who do you want to invite?", Gun asked sharply.

"Be thankful they are taking us, otherwise they'll cut us out too.", New teased him and everyone started laughing at his bewildered expression.

"Mix."

"Do you really want to invite him?", Gun asked coyly.

"Cool than that makes it 10 people two cars, we are done!", Tul concluded.

"Only one agenda is left now.", I added.

"What?", Mew asked.

"There are two birthday next week, so we will going there on one and will be coming back by other."

"Whose birthdays?", Mild asked confused.

"Its Gun's and Tul's birthday.", Off replied.

"Aow.", Mew grinned at them.

"P~, I'll be out for the whole day on my birthday.", Gun said meekly.

"Aow, but we want to celebrate your birthday!", New added.

"Let's have dinner together atleast?", I asked.

"We'll leave the next morning so its okay."

"Off, don't you have anything to say about this?", Mild asked.

"Its okay if he already has some plans."

New and Earth raised their eyebrows but other shrugged it off.

"Maxi wanted drop by in Hua Hin.", New added.

"Wait, Maxi means Max Nattapol?", Tul asked 

"The one only!"

"No need.", he scoffed.

"Why?", I asked confused because Max was the kindest person I knew. He used to live in our neighborhood but then their family shifted due to business. He was close to Earth and Tul than anyone else I knew of. 

"He left."

"So?"

"So nothing, no one here knows him anyways."

"He is very friendly that way."

"Tay.", Tul said in a low tone to show he is upset.

"I should call him for as your birthday gift then."

"You can rather buy condoms for me", Tul scoffed.

Everyone snickered at that. 

"That's enough about Maxi now.", Off glared at both us.

"Woah, You guys are so close knit man.", Mild and Mew were in awe.

"Its a long story.", Off explained, "But don't worry you are a part of it now."

The discussion continued for another hour about other mundane things. It was very late by the time they decided to leave. Mew offered to pay and I followed him to split. I saw New waiting for us by the door. 

"I wish I could drop you home but I'll have to take Earth."

"I can go with Gunnie."

The banter started again and I saw Mew pulling New aside. 

"I'm a TayNew shipper long before Tay knows...", Mew whispered and snickered as New's face turned slightly red.

"P'Mew~"

"What? I'm just rooting for you."

They laughed among themselves and we dispersed for the day. I understood how oblivious I had been towards New feelings then. I thought about it way back home and decided to do something special for him on the trip. 

Chapter Text

It was finally d-day of the trip. They were divided into two groups. New wanted to talk with Gun therefore they were with Tul, Tay and Off whereas others were in Mew's car. 

"So, where were you yesterday?", New asked as soon as they were settled and the car had hit the highway.

Everyone's ears had perked up to listen to the response.

"You ditched the dinner with us.", Tul added.

"P~", Gun said cutely, "I was out..."

"Where?", Newwiee was not the one to back down.

"I had first gone to a temple to do merit."

"such filial kid you are.", New scoffed.

"I am!"

"What did you ask for?"

"I can't tell you that.", Gun looked away blushing as he remembered what the monk had blessed him with. 

"Then... what did you after that?"

"Umm... I was out having lunch..."

"With whom?"

Gun didn't answer that instead Off did, "If doesn't want to answer don't force."

"Were you with him?", New asked sharply.

Off contemplated over the question but finally answered, "Yeah... he had asked me to drive him around."

New shook his head and narrowed his eyes at Gun who was looking everywhere except at his best friend. 

"If you are done putting him in the hot seat, let's talk about something else.", Tay suggested. 

Off and Gun were grateful towards the change but New kept glancing at the couple. The conversation then turned towards the university. 

"How do you know Arm?", Tay asked his Peng.

"I had met him during a party and again during the freshie contest."

"Aow..."

Suddenly, three phones pinged at the same time. Tay checked his same time as Off did and they exchanged a glance. Tay quickly typed a reply and Off put away his phone reading it. It was a message from Mild saying they are planning something so stall some time somewhere. 

It had hardly been an hour they were road and now they were told to stall time as well. Tay and Off were deep in thoughts when Tul asked, 

"Who was it?"

"Just college notification.", Tay replied casually.

"Spam!", Off replied soon after which earned him a glance from Gun. 

They regretted leaving the city traffic behind because it was one of the best ways to stall time, not that they liked traffic but it was one the best reason to stall time. Tul was driving therefore he didn't know the message yet and it was up to Tay and Off to do something. 

Tay started squirming in his seat while playing on his iPad. He rubbed his stomach and pouted looking at the iPad.

"What's wrong with you?", Tul noticed him after a while.

"Nothing..."

"Are you okay?", New asked concerned.

"Yes... I'm just hungry, can we stop at some roadside stop?"

"We just left an hour ago!", Tul complained.

Tay rolled his eyes and Off said, "Even I'm hungry."

"Didn't you have breakfast right before you left?", Gun asked.

"You were also late because of that.", New continued.

Tay suppressed his chuckles and kept a straight face. Tul finally gave in, 

"Let's take the next exit and look for a place to eat."

It didn't take them long to find the next exit. They stopped at a place that had a scenic view of the sea. It was a small cafe but it overlooked the sea. Tay took out his camera and decided to snap some pictures before going ahead. They ordered the local dishes and waited for them.

"I want to take some pictures after breakfast.", Tay announced pulling up his camera.

"We will reach late na, P~", New said.

"We'll be there in time for lunch if we are lucky with the traffic.", Tul explained looking up from his phone

"It's a vacation anyways.", Off leaned back.

"It is a photo shoot.", Gun said

"It's a very chill thing, we are just doing it for fun.", Tay smiled.

The food arrived shortly after and everyone jumped into eating it. Tay was the first one to finish his and excused himself walked away towards the back of the cafe to click pictures. 

"What is taking Tay so long?", Off wondered out loud after they were done eating and paying for the food. It was for a quite long time Tay had gone. 

"I'll go check on him.", New offered. 

New walked off behind the cafe to look for Tay but he was nowhere to be found. He finally decided to ask an old woman who cleaning there. She directed him to the beach. He walked towards the beach and saw Tay sitting under a coconut tree crouching. He suddenly felt scared about something bad happening to him. He rushed there to see Tay going through the photos. 

"What are you doing?", New asked sharply and Tay almost dropped the camera.

"Aow... Hin, what are you doing here?"

"I asked first.", New said settling down beside him

"ah.. I'm.. um.. I'm stalling time.", New stared at him incredulously.

"So, Mew, Mild and Earth have planned something and they messaged us earlier to come in a little late."

"Ohh, you could have told us na?"

"It's probably for Gun's birthday or Tul's"

"Oh...", he then realized the excuse for stopping.

Tay went back to staring at his camera screen. He smiled to himself at the photo he took. New leaned over his shoulder to check the photos when Tay noticed his presence. He turned sharply toward his right and met the dark brown orbs. His eyes moved from the eyes to slightly chapped and parted lips. He gulped and saw New's eyes on his Adam's apple. The tension was palatable as they inched closer. 

Their lips met halfway. The kiss was soft at first like they were tasting each other for the first. Tay nibbled on his bottom lips and sucked it in till New let out a small moan. Tay's arms snaked around New's waist and he pulled him close with the small of his back. His other hand cupped New's cheeks to tilt for more access. 

New was almost straddling Tay on his lap when they broke apart for air with lips slightly parted and swollen. They continued ravaging each other till one of the phones started ringing. They chose to ignore it for the first time when the other started ringing. New pulled away and Tay rolled his eyes at the interruption. 

"Hello?", New answered his phone breathlessly. 

"Where are you? Did you find Tay?", Gun's sounded concerned on the other end. 

"Uh.. yeah.. um.. I found Tay....", New stuttered as Tay indicated to tell him that they will there in 5 minutes.

"He is not feeling well so we'll there in 5..."

"Is he okay?"

"Yeah, probably got headache due to the drive.", New answered nervously hoping Gun will buy his lie and not hear the guilt in his voice. Tay smirked at him placed a chaste kiss on his neck which made New yelp unconsciously.

"What happened?"

"uhh.... I... there.. is a... um,, a cat here.", New stuttered as Tay's hand his back was lowering dangerously. 

"Oka, come back fast. Let me know you want to pick some meds for P'Tay."

"Sure.", he hung up and glared at Tay. 

"What?", Tay asked innocently. 

"Why were you teasing me when I was talking with him?"

"You looked adorable stuttering.", Tay smirked. 

"Whatever.", New was about to get up when Tay pulled him back on his lap.

"We still have 5 minutes."

Five minutes turn into ten and they walk back to the car nonchalantly. 

"How is your headache phi?", Gun asked concerned.

"I'll sleep on it in the car.", Tay replied gingerly as Off smirked at him

"Why do you look so flustered New?", Tul asked observing him.

"It is very hot here, lets get going otherwise we'll be late."

"Sure."

They all piled up in the car and true to his Tay fell asleep almost immediately. He had started getting a slight headache and secondly New was beside New who was the best pillow he could ever get. 

The rest of the ride went smoothly with everyone talking and listening to music. It took them about 3 hours to reach their destination as they got caught up in the traffic later. Mild and Earth greeted them at the door itself and directly took them to the dining room where everyone was gathered. Tay and Off were confused about the celebration but they played along without questioning about it. Mild assigned them their rooms and announced,

"Let's go to the beach after you freshen up. We can catch the last rays for good photos."

"Where is the celebration?", New asked Tay as they put bags in their room. 

"I don't know, they might have planned something out.", Tay shrugged and hugged New. 

"You are being clingy today."

"My head is throbbing."

"Do you want to stay back and rest?"

"No, it's okay."

They quickly washed up and changed into Hawaiian shirts and shorts before running towards the beach. Others were already there playing beach volleyball. Tay carried his camera and snapped candid pictures while playing volleyball. 

Mew stood beside him and peeked at the photos as Tay was browsing through them. 

"Someone cannot take their lens off their boyfriend.", Mew teased him.

"He is photogenic that way.", Tay smirked.

"Ohh hooo... so you finally making it official?"

"Soon.", Tay smiled to himself and asked, "What about the party?"

"Everything is set up."

"Where?"

Mew blinked at him and then laughed, "Oh, you were not there, don't worry it's very well set up."

The sun had almost set and everyone was tired. Mild asked everyone to be on the rooftop in half an hour. Mew, Mild, Earth and Mix were the first ones to be there in 15 minutes completing the last of preparation. Tay, New, Alice and Tul soon followed. Only Off and Gun were left. The rooftop was decorated with fairy lights. The patio had a barbeque and hotpot setup with throw pillows for comfortable seating. The sound of waves crashing could be heard in the background completing the aesthetic atmosphere.

Gun walked up and the fairy lights were switched off. Everyone stood silently waiting for him to enter and surprise him with the setup. The door opened and Gun walked into the darkness.

"Where is everyone?", he asked to no one in particular. It was dark therefore he couldn't make out figures standing towards the edge. Off walked in holding a cake lit with candles and the venue burst into lights with everyone singing the happy birthday song. Gun stood there frozen as Off walked closer to him with the cake. He teared up a little looking around but quickly wiped the tears away as he blew the candles to make a wish.

Gun went around and hugged every person there to thank them for the best birthday surprise. The night passed by in eating and karaoke. 

Chapter Text

Tay

I woke up with something pressing on my hand. I tried moving my arm but it was too numb to move. I slowly opened my eyes and was suddenly attacked by sunlight. I again opened my eyes gingerly and looked around. I realized we all had slept on the rooftop itself after the party. 

The sun was rising from the horizon casting its rays on us. I looked down and saw Newwiee sleeping peacefully. His head was resting on my shoulder blade while his hands curled around me. Best view to wake up every day, I smiled to myself at that thought. 

Just then, New decided to nuzzle into my neck dangerously close to my Adam's apple. I tried to move but his grip tightened making it hard for me both physically and mentally to leave. I lay there for a while and his grip loosened around me. I extracted myself from the tight position and rushed to the washroom for a cold shower. 

I finally felt like I could breathe after taking a shower. I walked back to the rooftop area and saw almost everyone was there still sleeping. Tul was the first to wake up while I picked up bottles from last night. He looked at me squinting his eyes which made him look funny. 

"What are you doing?", he asked gruffly 

"Cleaning up.", I whispered.

"Why are you talking so slowly."

"Go wash up and come.", I instructed him as I got closer to the place he was sleeping. He looked around once before walking away. 

The girls were the next ones to wake up. Mild greeted me good morning and they walked without another word. I decided to make some coffee and prepare breakfast. I prepared some hangover soup with other things and carried them back upstairs. Tul helped me carry things while the girls set up the table. We wanted to start eating but others were sleeping like the dead. Tul and I nudged them but only Mew woke while others stirred and fell asleep. I nudged Gun once but he groaned saying, "Papi~ five minutes."

I smiled shaking my head at his cuteness, gone was the fierce Gun who was replaced with the softer one. The smell of food wafted around and soon everyone was up and gathered around the Japanese table set up. 

"So, how do we start with the shoot?", Alice asked after breakfast.

"Tay?", Mild called me.

"We should have taken some shots in the morning sun, the lighting was the best then."

"It's not very late yet.", Tul complained.

"Alice and New do you guys have any ideas we can start with?", I asked. 

They both looked at each other before sharing their ideas. It didn't take long after the planning to get into the themes and clothes. Everyone helped with the setup which made it easy to start the shoot immediately. 

We were done with the major shoot till late in the afternoon when we decided to take a break and go out for lunch at a nearby restaurant. The afternoon passed by in lazing at the beachside restaurant. 

We then decide to play water sports. We got water bikes in couples, therefore I and New got one and we took off before others. Off and Gun are soon to follow behind us. We played around racing each other in the sea, splashing water. 

"I want to try something.", New said out of the blue 

(A/n: this is a piece of fiction don't try this unless you are experienced. just putting it out there!)

"What?", I asked panicked. 

"You have to agree first."

"New, please don't pull any stunt out here."

"Oh come on Te, I swear it's safe and we are wearing life jackets."

"Still!"

"Come on stop being a killjoy, we both are good swimmers and we will survive no matter what.", he said leaning closer, "I know you'll not let me drown.", he breathed slowly in my right ear.

A blush crept over my face but it was not visible to him as he was sitting behind me holding my waist. I finally nodded my approval after a thought. He leaned forward and pressed a peck on my cheeks before starting his stunt. 

He stood up behind the bike and I slowed the speed by a notch. He pressed his knees into my shoulders for support and leaned on me before raising his hand. 

"Don't sway your hands!", I scolded him.

"What are you doing?", Off came beside us watching New.

"Papi, I'm doing it as well.", Gun said immediately

"New, it's dangerous.", Tul and Mew joined us on their bike.

"It is thrilling.", New said wrapping his hands around my neck for support and leaning in for more support. I could feel newwiee pressing on my back. I blushed slightly but thankfully he couldn't see. I increased the speed of the bike and water splashed around us leaving everyone behind. The safety buoys came in view. I had to take a sharp left turn making New lose his footing and lean towards the right. He yelped and was about to fall when I held his arm. I maneuvered the bike with one hand and pulled New with other but he still fell into the sea.

"New!!", I called out to him as he disappeared under the water.

I pulled the brakes and stopped at the place he fell. I was about to jump into the water when he surfaced with the help of float.

"I'm okay!", he held up a okay sign for me.

"Can you climb up again?"

"Yes."

He swam near the bike and I held out my hand. He grabbed it and I pulled him up behind me.

"What the fuck were you thinking?", I chided him.

"I'm sorry.", he said slowly, "I didn't think I would lose my balance."

"I warned you!"

He nuzzled his face into my shoulder and wrapped his arms around my torso. He mumbled a sorry and shivered a little.

"I felt like a stone for the first time.", he mumbled close to my ear, "I was drowning so fast. I could see the sun shining above the surface but it was unreachable.", his voice cracked at the end and he started sobbing. I rubbed his arm with one hand and slowed the bike.

"You safe now.", I said softly.

"I was scared Phi, I was so scared for a moment I thought, I'll never reach the surface.", he said in between sobs.

"Hey, I'm here and I would have jumped in to save you, always."

He buried his face in my shoulder and continued sobbing softly till we reached the shallow part of the sea where we had to stop the bikes and walked the rest of the way back. Everyone stood at the beach waiting for us. New hid behind me slightly and held my hand tightly.

"What were you thinking when you pulled that stunt?", Tul was first to shout.

"It was very dangerous.", Earth started as he hid more behind my back

"Hey guys, its my fault, I took very sharp without telling him. Don't chide him because it was scary for both us.", I explained.

They gave us disappointed looks but turned around to walk back to the villa. The sun had started setting and dinner was set up. The barbeque was set outside for us with fresh meat and fish laid out. Some decided to take a shower while others decided to wait back and grill. I decided to wait back help but Off and Tul were the first ones to deny my help.

"You are very clumsy", was  their reason. I left from there and told them that I'll back in a while. They didn't ask anything and left me to fend for myself. I walked down the beach and thought about everything that transpired today.

I returned after a while and saw almost everyone had showered. They had gathered around the barbeque and talking.

"Where were you?", Mew asked before New could ask.

"Went out to get more drinks!", I held up the bag of alcohol drinks.

"Go shower, we are waiting for you.", Earth complained.

"Be back in 15!", I walked away.

I quickly showered a pulled on my best shirt and walked down to join others. The smell of grilled meat hit my nostrils and stomach grumbled in response to that. I quickly joined others for dinner. We sat in the circle talking about random things and teasing the nongs occasionally. Earth and Mix were on everyone's radar today. Gun and New kept on teasing Earth about Mix while Tul and Mew were taking Mix's side but still teasing them occasionally. Mild and I kept teasing Mix mercilessly whereas Off and Alice kept to themselves.

"Come on nong, we know there something kindling here.", Mild said directly.

"No phi~", Mix said flustered.

"What is kindling?", Gun asked innocently, "Its not kindling phi, I can see the smoke already."

"Aye Gun, stop it na. The fire will burn out if you keep teasing it.", New said jokingly which earned him a glare from Earth but other laughed.

"I already have someone I like!", Earth said finally

"Is the person here?", Tul asked.

"Yes", Earth answered confidently.

"That's enough for us to know it is already.", Mew said and started laughing.

The dinner continued in a similar banter and later Mew got his guitar. We made a small bonfire and sat around in a circle to start a jamming session. Mew started with playing random chords before picking up "Make you mine" by public. It ended with Tul and Mew singing together to the lyrics while we tried to dance on those beats. The next song he picked was "Best song ever" by One direction which had everyone on their feet and dancing. New was reluctant to join at first but I pulled him up with us and we played the song on our mobile as well.

The dancing songs went on for a while before he picked up some soft songs. The girls jammed on "Love story" followed by "Little things" by Off Gun and "Just the way you are" by Mew. Earth, Mix and New declined to sing which only left me.

"Which song do you want to pick Tay?", Mew asked.

I had two songs on my mind but I chose the second one. The first was saved for a better occasion. I went to Mew and whispered the song in his ear. He smiled at me.

"This is from my favorite singer.", I announced before starting with the song;

"I found a love for me

oh darling, just dive right in and follow my lead

well, I found a girl, beautiful and sweet

Oh, I never knew you were the someone waiting for me."

I looked straight at New while singing the next part,

"Cause we were just kids when we fell in love

not knowing what it was

i will not give you up this time

but darling, just kiss me slow, your heart is all I own

and in your eyes, you're holding mine."

He was a blushing mess and I locked eyes with him when others were looking at me,

"Baby, I'm dancing in the dark with your between my arms.

Barefoot on the grass, listening to our favourite song

when you said you looked a mess, I whispered underneath my breath

But you heard it,darling you look perfect tonight."

I had to tear my eyes away from him as they had almost started welling up and if I kept staring I might cry as well.

"Well I found a woman, stronger than anyone I know

She shares my dreams, I hope someday I'll share her home.

I found a love, to carry more than just my secrets to carry..."

 

 

Chapter Text

The song ended and silence prevailed over everyone. I glanced around nervously and everyone burst out clapping. 

"Woah!!", Mew said from behind me, "I didn't know you could sing so well!"

I smiled to myself and glanced at New, he was rapidly blinking away tears. I smiled at everyone and the jamming session continued as a group. 

The girls decided to call it a night and soon everyone followed. Mew, Tul, New and I were the only ones left to clean. 

"They all escaped smoothly.", Tul groaned.

"Come on someone has to do this anyway.", Mew said picking up plates.

"I'm sleepy Phi~", New whined.

"Let's finish half of this together and I'll do the rest on my own.", I offered. 

"Are you sure?", Tul asked shocked.

"Positive.", I affirmed.

"How are you planning to do it alone?", Mew asked.

"Don't worry, I'm used to hosting and managing everything."

They all left taking away the dirty dishes. I put on some songs and started cleaning the rest of the things. I finished cleaning the patio and returned to kitchen when,

"I'll help you.", someone said gravely almost making me flinch. The things in my hand were going to fall but New caught it.

"I thought you were sleepy.", I teased him.

"How can I sleep knowing you are working?"

"Uhh... okay, finish this up, I have something to show you.", that caught his attention and he asked,

"What is it?"

"You will see.", I smiled to myself.

"Umm... tell me na pleaseee~", New whined cutely and pouted at me. 

"You'll know it soon.", I kept rinsing the plates while he stood beside me with a dazed. 

"I can hear the gears in your head moving, stop thinking.", I continued rinsing the last of the plates. 

"Then tell me already!"

I started laughing after trying to suppress it for a while, "We are going..."

"Yes??", he eagerly nodded his head and moved closer.

"Going."

"Going where? Isn't it too late to go out?", he was annoyed. 

I switched off the tap and turned to face him, "For a walk."

I walked away saying that to pick up the satchel I had prepared in advance. The house looked clean and everyone was sound asleep. I saw New waiting for me at the backdoor. 

"Let's go.", I slipped my hand into his and tugged at him slightly. 

"We are going for a walk?", He questioned still confused. 

"Obviously, do you think we are in the condition to drive at the moment?"

"Hmm no."

We walked slowly, hand in hand enjoying the gentle sea breeze. 

"What are you thinking?", I asked him as we got closer to the shore.

"Just wondering..."

"About?"

"Where are you taking me?"

I scoffed, "I know you were thinking about something else but okay we are just going somewhere close."

"Why did you choose that song?"

I knew he had more questions about the jamming session but he was restraining himself. I tried to answer him as truthfully as possible so he could open more,

"It's by my favourite artist and it was one of the song that could express me."

He glanced at me sideways but quickly looked away, "You give me hope."

"I do?"

"Hmm..."

We reach close to our destination so I stop him a few feet away and open my bag. 

"What are you looking for?"

"This!", I say pulling out an eye mask.

"What is this for?"

"I want you to wear it."

He stared at me intently for a minute but obliged. I stood in front of him and showed him random fingers to test if he could see. Satisfied with myself, I grabbed his hand and whispered in his ear, "trust me." 

He shivered slightly but tightened his grip on my hand. I led him to the blanket which I had laid out and helped him sit. 

"Where are you going?", he asked panic evident in his voice. 

"I'm right here.", I said slowly. 

I quickly set the song which I had prepared on my phone. I walked around lighting up the tea light candles. The familiar music started and New started looking around. 

I got a heart, and I got a soul
Believe me, I will use them both
We made a start
Be it a false one, I know
Baby, I don't want to feel alone

 

"I'm here", I whispered to him settling beside him

So kiss me where I lay down
My hands pressed to your cheeks
A long way from the playground

I pulled the eye mask down and I continued singing further lyrics 

I have loved you since we were 18

Long before we both thought the same thing
To be loved and to be in love
All I can do is say that these arms
Are made for holding you, oh-oh
I wanna love like you made me feel

When we were 18

I got on my knees as the song continued playing in the background, 

"I know you confessed under an unusual circumstance and I couldn't answer you then... but I hope it's not too late for the answer....", his mouth was hung open. 

"I know we didn't have a perfect start from our playground... but I wouldn't want to change a thing. I know I took my time but I did realize that I like you Thitipoom, all of you, the stubborn one to the cute one. I want to love all of you, so would you be boyfriend, Hin?" {edit!!!!}

I finished my mini confession and the song ended with it. Silence fell over us as I waited for him to answer. He looked shell-shocked with everything that was going around. I kept staring at him intently as he processed everything. 

"Its okay, if-", I started when he cut me to it, "Yes, Te!"

"Yes?"

"Yes.", he jumped into my arms and pressed his lips on mine. 

I was taken aback by the sudden move but I wrapped my arms around him and pulled him closer. The kiss was slow and chaste, I took my time sucking on his lower lips before biting into it. New moaned and granted me access. We deepened the kiss as I sucked on his tongue. I wanted to go on like this but we had to pull apart for air. He rested his forehead on mine and breathed heavily. I could feel his breath fanning over my face with my eyes closed. I pulled him closer by his waist and he wrapped his legs around me closing the distance between our crotch.

 I slowly opened my eyes as my hands caressed the small of his back. I lifted his shirt and slipped my hand underneath causing a shiver to run through him. I drew random patterns on his soft milky skin and his breath hitched. 

"Tell me if you want to stop.", I whispered. 

"What if I want more?", he opened his eyes still heavily breathing. 

"If that's what you want.", I smirked pulling him in for another kiss. 

I wanted to lay him down and devour him then and there but I liked our current position better. His legs were squeezing my waist as our crotch rubbed together through the thick material of our shorts. I slipped my finger inside the waistband of his shorts and grabbed the soft curves as he gasped breaking away from the kiss. 

His face was flushed red as I took out my hand. I placed a chaste kiss on his cheeks and he turned to hide his face in my hair. 

"Stop teasing me...", his breathy voice was full of desire in my left ear. Without further ado, I unbuttoned the front of his shorts and let his erection out. He again shivered as the cold air and my fingers teased him. He rested his head on my shoulder and moaned as I skimmed over his erection. He whimpered as I asked,

"What do you want baby boy?"

"You...", he mumbled.

"What do you want me to do?", I teased him knowing well what he wants.

He growled lowly near my neck and started sucking on my cervix causing an involuntary moan. I arched my neck for more access. He kept sucking and lightly biting the place. His hands roamed down my body and freed my erection. It was my turn to moan shamelessly as he stroked my dick. 

"Touch me...", he said huskily.

I didn't need to be told twice. I lined our cocks in a position that they grinded each other.  A little touch sent sparks down my back. I started stroking them together slowly. 

"Hold me tight, you are up for a ride.", I whispered and felt his arms secure around my neck and back as he buried his face in my collar bone. I started moving our cocks in sync. With every thrust they touched, it caused an effect on us. I could feel him trembling under my touch. I rested my head on his shoulder and buried my face there gasping at the effect of our rubbing cocks.

He started moaning with a low growl which turned into a full-fledged hickey session on my collar. His arms tighten around me as I felt the familiar sensations in my stomach. I was close but I wanted to cum with him so I slowed down the thrusting a little. 

"C-close-e ahhh~", he moaned shaking his head. 

I picked up the pace again and felt his cock twitch. He was leaking precum with me. I started stroking hard and fast almost making him shout, 

"Te~ cum ahhh"

We both shot our load together as I moved faster. He convulsed over me as my vibrations were pacified with him. I lay back on the blanket with him still in my arms. I wrapped my arms around him as rested his head on my chest. 

"That was the best hand job I have ever got...", he admitted shyly. 

"How many have you got before?", I asked half teasing and half-seriously.

"None.", he murmured. 

I smiled to myself for being his and place a kiss on his hair. We fixed ourselves a little and lay hugging each looking at the sky. The moon shone casting a glow on our glistening skins. 

"I love you, te.", he said sincerely.

"I love you too, Hin, thank you for making me the happiest man today."

I don't remember how we lay there talking about mundane things and watching the moon. It was the best night of the trip so far. My heart felt full and content with Hin my arms. I never felt this kind of connection with my exes. He was like the missing piece of puzzle in my life which had fallen in place officially. 

Chapter Text

I was woken up by sheet rustling. It soon stopped and a mop of hair tickled my neck as someone snuggled into my embrace wrapping his arms around my torso. I smiled to myself as the last night's shenanigans came back to me. We stumbled home after our incident and took a shower together before making out in bed and sleeping. 

"What are you laughing to yourself about?", Peng asked me breaking my daydream. I looked up and saw everyone staring at me weirdly. 

"Uhh.. this photo is very funny...", I laughed awkwardly changing the photo on the small screen. Peng raised his eyebrows at me and peered over my shoulder to see it. He pursed his lips into his typical smirking face just like in the photo. 

"You could have asked me do this, the photo would have been better.", he chuckled and others shuffled around with their things. 

"Some photos are better as candids only.", I replied looking at the person whose photo I had changed into. Our eyes met and he smiled to himself as Alice explained something. 

Damn Peng, he broke my beautiful daydream, so where was I again? Ah yes, we showered together and woke up to the best morning possible. I sighed audibly and changed the lenses of the camera before Mew came back. 

The shoot went on smoothly with the occasional break for food and drinks. We caught the last of the light before calling it a day. I craned my neck and fingers to shrug off the tiredness, it was one the longest ones I had ever done. Changing angles and getting the perfect shot was no joke, it had drained me completely and now all I wanted to do was to fall back and cuddle someone to sleep. 

I helped clear the props away with others, we were finally done and settled around the Japanese table with dinner. Everyone was tired after such a long shoot.

"I never knew, it would take the whole day to complete just one shoot.", Earth groaned settling down. 

"The magic is in taking the perfect shot, brother."

"It's all about timing as well.", Tul supplied. 

"Are we doing it again tomorrow?", Mild asked the question which was on everyone's mind. I looked around and saw everyone looking tired. 

"Let's do one in the evening. The last of photos are looking good.", Alice suggested browsing through, wait, was it my camera? I quickly sat beside her and watched the screen like a hawk. I didn't like showing the photos till they are ready after editing. A few photos passed behind the scenes and New's photo popped up. 

I quickly grabbed the camera from her as she raised her eyebrows at me smirking, "You'll get the photos once they are developed."

"Are you sure I'll get all of them?"

"Yup."

"Even the BTS?'

"No, they are personal."

"Are they personal or is there only one person in those.", Alice dropped her voice towards the end.

"They are personal."

"Anyways, what do you guys want to play?", Mild asked pulling out the bag of games. 

"Let's start with something simple for the kids.", Mew teased. 

Tul guffawed, "Sure."

Earth and Gun threw him a dirty which quickly shut him up, whereas New and Mix were busy making cocktail drinks.

"Uh fine... let's start with never have I ever drinkin' edition.", Peng suggested the game. 

"Whoever has done the said thing will take a sip and others will pass.", I continued smirking, this is going to be fun. 

"Right, who is going first?", Mix asked passing out the plastic cups.

"Me!", Alice raised her glass and started with, "Never have I... had a girlfriend?"

Mild, Mew, New, Gun, and Earth started laughing while we stared at her shocked as she drank from the cup. Leaving them, we all took a sip. The alcohol burned, Mix and New had sure messed up the drink high time. 

"I'll go next!", Mew said as he was right beside Alice, "Never have I... snuck out of the house at night?"

"Who does th-". Earth started but soon shut up when, Tul, Peng, and I exchanged glances and drank from our cups. "It's a long story.", Peng explained laughing. 

Gun raised his glass and took a sip so did Alice. 

"We have some bold people here."

"Let's get down to some real things.", Gun smirked, "Never have I... went to a rave party."

Again, Tul, Peng, Gun, and I were the only ones to take a sip. 

The game went on with weird questions and booze was running freely but someone was not quite enjoying the whole thing. New was the only one whose glass was almost full. He was best friends with Earth and Gun, I wondered how he didn't try the majority of the things they had tried. It was my turn next so I decided to ask something simple.

"Never I have ever... fallen in love.", he looked around startled but then took a sip of his drink with me, Off, Gun, Mix, and Mild while others hooted in the background. 

We then decided to change the game and play seven minutes in heaven, I don't remember who suggested this but this game was approved really fast. We all sat around in a circle and spun the bottle to choose the pairs. 

The bottle first stopped on Mild and Mew. They didn't want to go to an enclosed space, so they chose to wait in the garden for 7 minutes. We didn't push them much knowing Mild already has someone and Mew might just get uncomfortable. 

"Now, I wonder what they are talking about.", Tul said out loud watching them from the window. 

"Stop being nosy, Tul.", I chided him as I peaked. They were laughing and clinking glasses as they talked. A few minutes later, they returned laughing again. 

"What are you laughing about?", Alice asked out of curiosity. 

"Mew was narrating a funny incident.", Mild continued giggling as they settled. 

The bottle was spun again and this time, it stopped on Off and Gun. 

"You both are not going to escape this!", Tul smirked.

"I know where they should be put.", New smiles scaring me with his look. 

They decide to lock them up in the washroom with the lights off. We waited for any sound but nothing followed so everyone went back to their places in the living while I waited back to unlock them. A few minutes later, I could hear heavy panting and something falling inside. 

"Everything okay?", I ask concerned. 

"Good.", Peng replied after a while. Their seven minutes ended and we walk back with both of them looking the same except Gun's lips look a little plumper more than they already were. The bottle is spun again and this time it's Tul and me. 

We both groaned in unsion so they locked us out of the house saying, 

"We know you both will destroy our rooms if we keep you there."

We settled on the front steps and decided to stare at the road till one of us was ready to talk. 

"We can sit like this for seven minutes or just talk about random things, choose your pick.", he said finally. 

"Then I choose to silence."

"Suck it up, Tawan, and spill the tea."

"How do you know there is tea?", I chuckle to myself as he rolls his eyes. 

"Please, first, I'm one of your best friends, and second, I can sense the tension till here bro, now spill."

"Well, you're right. I like someone and I confessed to him."

"You finally collected enough courage to confess to Newwiee!", he exclaimed.

"How do you know it's New?", I scowled. 

"Oops, I should have been blind instead.", he said sarcastically, "I can see the way you both kept stealing glances and escaping. The tension was very well noticed."

"Aow, so everyone knows."

"I don't about Earth, Mix, Gun, and Alice but others know."

"Woah, you didn't say anything."

"There was nothing left to say."

Just when we were about to reply the door opened and we were called in. 

The bottle was spun again and this time it stopped between me and Earth with New on the opposite end. 

"New Earth!!", Alice exclaimed. 

"It's best friends day all the way.", Mix held up his cup as everyone cheered. 

They were ushered into our room and locked from outside. Mix offered to stay there for seven minutes. I was about to follow others down the stairs when he stopped me. 

"Stay with me, Phi.", he said calmly and I called out to others that we will be back soon. 

"Do you have anything to say?", I asked him gently.

He shook his head and nodded his head at the door instead. I could hear them talking but I couldn't catch their words. The time was almost up when I heard Earth say, 

"I like you New Thitipoom! I can't keep doing this any longer, I had to let it out."

It felt like the world had come crashing down on me. Mix looked away wiping his tears and he ran upstairs while I stood there frozen still figuring out what they were saying. My brother likes his best friend and I can't be a hindrance in their relationship, right?

Just when my brain was about to go into overdrive, I heard Earth continued saying something. I unlocked their door before walking away to follow Mix. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Chapter Text

"So, I can finally talk to you without my brother hovering around", Earth said as soon as we walked in the room. 

"You know?"

"Isn't it obvious?"

I look around sheepishly not knowing how to answer him, "I'm sorry Earth, I know you should have been the first one to know but-"

"but what Newwiee? Am I not your best friend?"

"You are but-"

"Before you continue I have something to confess as well."

"Don't."

"I like you New Thitipoom! I can't keep doing this any longer, man!"

"Why Earth? You of all people know how I feel?"

Just then the door clicked and we froze in our places. It creaked open slightly and footsteps retreated from there. I rushed to the door and caught Tay turning towards the stairs. 

"Game's over guys.", he shouted. 

I could hear others shouting back and groaning, asking what happened but he ignored them and threw a last glance at me before walking away. My feet fell heavy to move so I held on to the door frame for support. 

"Earth!", I said gathering my energy. 

"Let me complete what I was saying before you go ahead a shout at me."

"Hm?", I crossed my arms and waited for him to continue.

"I like you but now I'm confused with all these feelings, New. I feel like I have lost you as you have gotten close to my brother."

"Are you by any chance jealous of your own brother?", I asked incredulously. 

"No... I don't know... I just want us to be like the old times."

"You didn't have to go through this facade to get that!!", I shouted at him

"Um... sorry to interrupt you guys but have you seen Mix?", Gun peaked from the door. 

"No."

"Why?", Earth asked.

"He was supposed to stand here but P'Tay called the game quits and I didn't see him."

"I'll go look for him", I said walking towards the door.

"I'll go look for them, you guys should continue talking.", Gun looked at us alternatively. 

"No, let me go search for him before he assumes something wrong because someone here is still very indecisive knowing everything."

"New...", they both started together. 

I climbed the stairs 2 at a time and reached the terrace to see Mix's head on Tay's shoulder. I figured he was crying and Te was trying to calm him down but my heart still ached at this sight. He murmured something to Mix and the latter nodded wiping his face. I waited for him to come out.

"Te, can we talk?", I asked as soon as he walked out. 

"Um...New, I think you should talk with Earth first.", he said with a tight smile. 

"But-"

"You guys should clear out things him first as a best friend."

"You won't misunderstand right?"

"Does it matter if I misunderstand it now?", he had a sad smile on his face. 

"You matter Te."

"Good to know.", He walked down the stairs leaving me with my thoughts. 

What was Earth thinking when he said that? Why didn't I see this coming before? I hope Tay doesn't misunderstand the whole thing. It has taken me a long time to come to this and I don't want to lose him because of his brother. But what if Earth meant what he said, ugh it will put me in a tight position but I can't lose my best friend.

"Are you okay?", Tay's voice pulled me out of my thoughts. He had two bottles of alcohol in his hand and a concerned look in his eyes.  I nodded at him slightly with mellow eyes. 

"He is waiting for you.", he nodded towards the stairs and walked away. 

I took a last glance at him and walked downstairs to confront my best friend.

"What the fuck were you thinking when you said?", I roared at Earth after slamming the door behind me.

"Did you talk to Tay?", Gun asked holding me back because he thought I might hit him. 

"No, he doesn't want to talk to me because he wants me to talk to someone before talking to him ", I grumble, "So speak now."

Earth glanced at Gun, "Well when I said I liked you, I really meant it. I really like two people so much that it is hard to let go of the first one." I was about to interrupt him but he held up his hand, "Let me finish. New you are my best friend and it is not hard to catch feelings for you. I have known you for almost all my life and I want to keep protecting you the same as before. You are the safe haven for me, the one who knows me and loves me back but then Mix came into my life and me made me question things. It was refreshing and exciting but I don't want to let go of what we have in our love. I saw you change slowly as you and P'Tay got closer, you guys got busy messing with each other and you forgot us on the way." 

I was still processing this but he continued, 

"Even Gun got busy with his relationship but he still kept this friendship or our relationship a priority. 

"Hey! when did I get into a relationship?", Gun protested but he got a stink eye from Earth as he continued.

"I'm not ready for this change Newwiee. Looking at you with my brother is weird for me but still acceptable but you also know him. He is not a very serious person, what if he breaks you apart "

I sat on the window seat to process all the things they were saying. They were right about the part where I had put my friends on a second pedestal with my relationship in its main stage. There were also many insecurities regarding P'Tay but we had overcome but did he say something about Gun being in a relationship?

"Are you in a relationship with P'Off?", I asked him without beating around the bush.

He looked shocked for a moment that I had caught that, "Yes, we are not official yet."

"That's what everyone says.", Earth smirked. 

"Earth, look I'm sorry about the past, the whole relationship thing I'm still new to it okay? I'm trying to balance it all. About us, I see you in a platonic light. I don't want to ruin that ever. As I have said before if you can love the second time you should choose that person because you never really loved the first one."

"I don't think my brother will be the right person for you either!", he exclaimed and we whipped our heads to stare at him. 

"Why would you say that?", Gun asked, "He is always so sweet to us and takes care of us like his nongs, or are you perhaps jealous?"

"No, I'm not jealous, I just think he doesn't deserve you. You know his history, he only had one serious relationship after which he changed completely."

"Earth.", I said as calmly as possible," I know he is your brother and you know him better than me but I still choose to be in a relationship with him. "

"So you choose him over me?", he asked fuming.

"I'm not choosing him over you! I love him in a romantic way and you in a platonic one, so please will stop making this hard for me?"

"It's either him or me.", he said slowly and left me bewildered. 

"He'll come around Newwiee.", Gun wiped away the tears which escaped and pulled me into a hug.

Meanwhile, on the rooftop, Mix narrated his side of the story of how he met Earth. 

"It started when I shifted from Chiang Mai to Bangkok for high school studies. I didn't want to shift here but we didn't have much of a choice left."

"You are from Chiang Mai?", Tay was surprised with this newfound piece of information. 

"Yeah, why?"

"Our grandma lives there and we visit her twice a year."

"Oh, I'm not exactly from Chiang Mai but my town is a little away from there..."

"Oh okay, sorry to interrupt, please continue."

"I'm used to this."

"How?"

"Earth is just like you, he curious about every little thing.", Mixx laughs bitterly

"Sorry about his behavior."

"You are not responsible for his shit, Phi."

"I-I feel responsible. He always looked up to me."

"You are not, trust me. He changed a lot."

"So, you were telling me how you met?"

"Yeah, we diverted. So after we shifted here, it was hard for me to make friends. Everyone already had their groups of good friends, while I stuck out. Those 2-3 weeks were the slowest ones in my life. One day, a group of seniors from college caught me outside school and told me to approach the fierce gang. I knew them but I was scared to talk with them so I said I didn't know them."

"Who are the part of this fierce gang?", Tay asked out of curiosity and Mix looked at him incredulously. When Tay looked serious, Mix chuckled and continued, 

"Gun, New, and Earth."

"Wait, what these kids are fierce?", Tay started laughing at the thought of Gun acting fierce. 

"They are pretty bold."

"Tell me about it."

"This college seniors came back after a few days and cornered me again, this time luckily Gun and New were passing by and saw them harassing me. They came to my rescue immediately but got hurt in the process."

"Where was Earth?"

"He was in swimming practice, he came right after it finished and saw those two and burst out.", Mix chuckled.

"Was he chiding them for fighting with the seniors?"

"No, he was upset that he was not invited for such an interesting fight."

"He can't fight.", Tay chuckled. 

"He can now, so we dressed their wounds and just like that they invited me to be a part of their gang. The more I got to them, the more I realized how I had misjudged them. We were close but I didn't see this coming."

"Just give him some time. I'm not just saying because he is my brother but because I know him. He is a confused soul, has always been one ever since I first saw him as a baby. In this time, also guard your heart Mix, you are a good kid, I don't want you getting hurt just because of someone else's decisions."

"I'll guard my heart, Phi."

We took a swig of the alcohol which had turned warm in our hands from holding for a long time while talking. 

"I want to go home, Phi.", Mix again leaned on his shoulder sobbing as the alcohol kicked in. 

"I'll take you home first thing in the morning.", Tay replied patting his head.

Earth watched them from afar but couldn't hear anything. He turned around and left feeling dejected.

Chapter Text

I don't remember the last time I had seen daybreak. It was such a beautiful view, I wanted to capture it on my camera but it wouldn't do justice to it so I sat staring at the sky as it slowly changed its shades of blue. Daybreak usually came with a new start but for me, it was moving on from the past. 

I had never thought so long and hard before but last night was a blur of memories and snippets from the past. I should have known that my brother liked him for a long time. As an older guy, I should have taken a step back on this one but I couldn't, I knew New felt something for me but it can also be infatuation in his teenage. This thought bought tears to my eyes which I wiped away with the back of my hand furiously.  I know I should listen to New's point on this one but I'm scared he might say something that I don't want to hear. 

The birthday surprise and the trip were all well planned unknowingly. I was just not ready to get myself to accept the fact that I loved him. Out of all the fishes in the sea,  my brother had to fall in love with him. Tawan, collect yourself together, I tried consoling myself, this will be a new start. I'll talk with New first thing after we return to Bangkok-

"Phi~", I turned to see Mix squinting up at me. 

"Good morning.", I smiled at him. 

"You woke up early?", he sat up rubbing his eyes.

"Hmm...", I stared straight ahead to avoid the question. He sat up staring at the sunrise. 

"Phi... can we leave early?"

I whipped towards him, "are you not feeling well?"

"I am, it's just...", he trailed off.

"You don't want to go back with him?"

"Yeah..."

"We can take a different car."

"Do you want to talk to New about this?"

I pondered over that for while and shook my head, "pack your things we will leave in 15."

We went down and took a quick shower before meeting in the kitchen. I stood at the island counter sipping coffee when Mix walked in. 

"Coffee?"

"Nope."

"Let's get breakfast on the way?" 

"P'Tay...", Mix asked cautiously

"Hmm?"

"Are you okay?"

"Yeah, don't worry about me."

I picked the keys for Tul's car and dropped him a message on a sticky note. We loaded the trunk and started the journey. The roads were fairly empty as it was very early in the morning, there were only stray transportation trucks but apart from there were no other cars. Mix was busy staring at the trees passing by, I tuned the stereo for the right station and tapped my fingers to the rhythm.  

We drove for an hour in silence but then this silence hard started deafening me. I felt the exhaustion of last night catching up with me. I took a sip of coffee from the tumbler but it only helped for a while before my eyes started dilating and my vision blurred. I have to pull over, I can't drive, I looked around blearily to take the car down but couldn't find a safe place. 

"We need to pull over.", I mumbled and Mix turned to me for the first time. 

"P'Tay!?"

I struggled to keep my eyes open and blink as my vision started blurring, ugh, what is happening? I finally found a clearing and pulled the car over to the left. I was going to slam on the breaks but accidentally accelerated and we crashed into a tree. My side of the car grazed the tree causing the window to shatter into pieces. We finally stopped moving and I turned to check on Mix, he looked startled with the airbag pressed on his face. Looking at him safe, I decided to sleep for a while as something warm trickled down my face. 

"P'Tay!", Mix finally found his voice and turned to me.

"I'll sleep for a while.", I murmured.

"P'Tay, stay with me, please don't sleep.", he kept shouting but it felt like a distant voice.

"Sleep..."

"P'Tay!!!!", is all I heard before everything blacked out. 

***

The next time, I felt conscious was by the noise around me. I heard my parents muffled voices scolding someone. I tried to open my eyes but they felt very heavy. I could hear someone crying and then someone interjected. I tried to move my hand but it felt like it was being pierced with hundreds of needles. 

"Please New, leave my sons alone!", mom shouted and it was followed by silence. A beeping sound came out of nowhere and another voice told them to leave the room. I fell into another dreamless slumber. 

***

The next time, I felt a bit saner after waking up. I could move my fingers and toes. I opened my eyes and was greeted my darkness this time. My throat felt dry and scratchy.I looked around but couldn't figure out if there was anyone here.

I was lying awake thinking about how I landed here. The accident floated in my mind. I guess our friends found out about us after being missing for hours. I'm parched, where can I find water. I turned to my side and saw a glass filled with water. I reached out to it but my hand started aching so I let it rest over the safety rail of the bed.  I tried to reach it again but I was feeling weak. I almost reached it in my last attempt but it fell causing a loud crashing sound. My hand felt limp and I felt sad for spilling my water. 

"Hey! You are up?", someone barged into my room.

"Y-yes", I replied with my raspy voice.

"Do you want water?", he asked switching on the light and I closed my eyes immediately with the glare that greeted me. 

"Um sorry, I'll dim them a little.", the guy understood my concern.

I just nodded slightly and he smiled. He came forward and poured some water in a glass with a straw for me. He then got the straw to my lips for drinking. I started feeling better after taking a few sips. 

"Thank god you are awake.", he said smiling at me brightly.

"Who are you?", he wasn't wearing the doctor's coat or nurse's scrubs. 

"Oh, I'm Alex, counsellor in progress and I guess you are Tay."

"Yes, how?"

"I'm told to take care of you."

"Wait, what?"

"I'll explain it later, you need rest, sleep it off for a while, okay?"

"um... where is my family?"

He looks at me sympathetically but it is quickly replaced by something else, "They will be here tomorrow."

He turned around to leave but turned again, "I'll just inform the doctor you are awake and come back, okay?"

"Okay."

His gray eyes seem way sincere than any other. He looks about my age dressed in jeans and a plaid shirt with an undershirt. I finally looked around after he left, feeling wide awake, I was attached to tubes and machines of different types. The monitor on my left showed my BP and pulse while some tubes were attached to my chest and head. I felt like an experiment in process on a lab table with such a setting. I guess I hit my head really hard to think such thoughts. Just then the doctor came in with the guy in a plaid t-shirt in tow. The doctor asked a few general questions about my motor skills and personal details. 

"Okay, Tawan, you are doing great but you need a lot of bed rest. We talk about those details later till Alex here is to talk to you and help you with things, okay?", the doc asked.

"Yes, doctor."

The doctor left leaving the Alex guy to tend me. He stared down at me in a weird way pursing his lips.

"What are you staring at?", I squirmed under his gaze.

"I'm wondering how you got into an accident."

"Oh shit! How is Mix? Is he okay?"

"Your friend?"

"Yes, the guy with me in the car."

"He was saved by the airbag. He pulled you out of the car and called for help."

"Thank god, he is okay."

"He had a few bruises but nothing major."

We again fell into comfortable silence till he spoke up, "New..."

"What about him?"

"He stayed here till today, I thought you would want to know."

"He did?", that information fluttered my heart. 

"Yup!", he looked around for a while and then asked, "do you want to sleep?"

"Nope."

"So, do you want to talk about what happened the night before the accident?"

I turned to him sharply which stung my head a little but his stern expression helped me ignore that. He raised his eyebrow and I nodded reluctantly. I didn't know why I agreed at first but later when I thought about it, I agreed because he was a stranger. It was easier to tell him my truth without any inhibitions. 

"It all started when I fell for my brother's best friend....", I started.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Chapter Text

Alex listened to the whole story with rapt attention without interrupting. I finished it by telling him about my night of thinking about the whole thing. 

"Can you elaborate on what you were thinking?", he asked.

I thought about it and surprisingly nothing made sense, all those thoughts and decisions seem absurd. I don't know why I took such impulsive decisions but whatever it was I was blank now.

"Tawan, are you here with me?", Alex asked and I turned to him for the first time, he had a notebook in his hand and he kept scrawling something. 

"Yeah!"

"So about that night?"

"Well, I don't remember much."

"Hmm..."

"How long was I out?"

"About 2 days?"

"Aow... that's long", I mumbled to myself, "What had happened?"

He smiled warmly before continuing, "You sure you want to hear it?"

"Yes."


Mix was in a panic looking as Tay passed out. He pushed open the door and quickly got off the car. He ran to the driver's side and tried to pry open the door but it was stuck due to impact. No amount to pulling, kicking, and punching could open it. He knew he needed help as his arm had started acting up. He called the first person he could think of for help.

"Hello, Earth?", he said as soon as the call connected. 

He explained the situation briefly and he said they will be there as soon as possible. He then called the emergency number and explained the situation. He wanted to rest his arm but when he saw Tay bleeding he collected himself and tried to open the door again. Using a small rock to break the window, he opened the door and pulled Tay out. 

The medical help was the first to reach the scene followed by the friends. Mew's doctor's instinct kicked in and he went with Mix and Tay in the ambulance to take care of them followed by others in the car. Earth was devasted and New was so shell-shocked that Gun had to help him walk. 

At the hospital, Mew came out looking somber after talking to the doctors in charge. 

"Earth", he acknowledged him before facing questioning looks from Off and Tul, "Call your parents and let them know about the accident. He might need some adult consent."

"What's going on?", Off asked raspily as his throat had dried up.

"Umm... the doctors are... they are worried that he has a hairline fracture which may lead to brain hemorrhage."

"Brain...", Tul sat on the bench shocked.

"Hemorrhage?", New collapsed to the floor. 

"It is just a possibility as he has a lost a lot of blood in the accident and they are also worried about impact fractures which are still to be detected.", Mew continued speaking fast making everyone speechless. 

"How is Mix?", Gun asked finally. 

"He had a shoulder fracture due to impact. They are putting a cast on him."

Mew looked around at his friends and continued, "We should wait till the doc give us some solid news."

Half of the party was sent back to Bangkok after Tay and Earth's parents arrived leaving Earth, Mew, Tul, Off, Gun and New who were waiting for the two to recover. They were quickly updated on the situation for the accident, Tay's mom was hysterical after hearing the situation. 

"What happened the night before?", his dad asked everyone. 

Earth and New exchanged worried glances while others looked blank. 

"How is the other kid, Mix right?"

"His parents have been informed as well, they will be here anytime now.", Mew who explained the medical situation continued, "He is out of danger, he has fractured his shoulder."

Tay's mom pursed her lips and glared at Earth for an explanation, she had caught the look between them and Earth quickly looked away. They were allowed to meet Mix as he was awake and recovering well. 

"What had happened?", Off asked sternly. 

Mix looked around guiltily, "It's all my fault.", he mumbled under his breath. 

"It's not!", Earth sat beside him and wrapped his arm around his shoulders while glaring at Off to be patient. 

"It is.", Mix continued sobbing. 

"What happened after he came back?", New's voice was raspy from crying.

Mix looked up at him and then at Earth, "We talked."

"About?", Tul was now getting impatient. 

"Earth and New..., he gave me some advice and I passed out drunk."

Earth clenched his fists but relaxed again knowing he is partly at fault here. 

"I woke up the next day and saw him watching the sunrise wiping his eyes. I thought he had woken up early and I asked him if we can leave early. I didn't realize that he had not slept the night."

"You mean he was driving the car sleep-deprived?", Gun exclaimed.

"Yeah..., he said he wants to pull over after an hour and we did pull over safely till he lost control and crashed into a tree with his side grazing the tree."

Off raked his hair and cursed under his breath and Tul frowned asking, "how can he be so careless?" They were collectively disappointed at the patient but their concern took over after a while.

A few hours later, the surgery ended and the doctors assured that Tay is out of danger that's when everyone relaxed. Mix's parents had arrived and completed his formalities before meeting Tay's parents. The doctors had allowed the visitors to meet so New took the first chance to see him. He saw sleeping peacefully with his head wrapped in bandages and an oxygen mask. 

"Te...", he started, "I should have talked to you, made you listen to my side maybe we could have avoided this. This is all my fault for not taking sooner..."

"New." he whipped his head to see Tay's mom looking at him disappointed. 

"Ma'am..."

"Please do me a favor?"

New stared at her as she continued, "Can you leave my sons alone?"

The machine started beeping and the doctor ushered them outside. 

"Just give them a little space to figure out things?"

"I will, just let me stay till he wakes up?"

"Thank you."

The doctor came back and informed them that he was stable. He then introduced Alex and asked them to consult him for Tay.


"That's what New told me.", Alex finished.

"I can't believe my mom said that."

"She wants you to have some space Tay, to think and figure out things. I think it is for good that you have some space before leaping back into your life. I don't want you to think about anything, just relax for a while and take it as a vacation."

"I can't leave loose end behind..."

"You also need strength to tie those loose ends."

"I guess you are right."

"Do you want to talk about the night before the accident now?"

Tay thought for a moment and then started his thoughts from the night before the accident. Alex listened to him completely and told him to rest.


"Tay?", Mom came in after breakfast.

"Hi, Mom."

"How are you feeling?"

"Better."

She continued asking questions about symptoms which I answered in monosyllable till she asked about that night

"What had happened that night, Tay?"

I glanced at her and remembered the dream which was the reality, "I don't want to talk about it Mom."

"Tay burying that issue won't solve anything, you both are the same.", she said the last part under her breath but it was heard by Tay.

"Why Earth didn't tell you what happened, yet?"

"Tay."

"What? Knowing him I thought he would have."

"Enough, you are going to Chiang Mai after you are discharged."

"But-"

"I don't want to hear anything, your leave application will be sent to your college and Earth will follow next week. I want you both to sort whatever feud you have before you come home."

"Mom~"

"Tay, stay with grandma for a while, she wants to see you.", Dad came in while his Mom announced his departure.

"Okay."

"Good, now your friends will be here in a while." 

"Okay."

"You love staying at your grandmother's stop sulking Tay.", dad said after my bland responses

"I do but I want to stay home this time."

"Sometimes a break can clear things up."

"I'll try to take it as a break."

"Good."

They talked about work and other things while they waited for my friends to join. My mind wandered off to my brother and certain someone who had not shown up yet.

Chapter Text

New

I had decided to keep my distance well and I thought I will be able to till every night the guilt for the misunderstanding ate me inside. I ignored Earth whenever he came to talk, with Gun it was mostly about school things and with Mix we had shifted to being empathic to each other.

At home, after the trip, P'Mew and P'Kay were aware of something was wrong, but I chose not to tell them. They kept looking at me with worried glances during dinner as I toyed around with my food for the most time.

I kept lying to myself that everything was fine but my inner turmoil was slowly winding on itself. I had lost my best friend as well as my boyfriend. I wanted to blame Earth for doing this but I knew it was my fault. I should have handled it well and talked to both of them.

It was the weekend and I was moping around in my room when P'Mew popped in my room.

"Are you free?", she asked cheerily.

"Hmm?"

"P'Kay is home today, should we watch a movie just like the old times?"

"I'm not in the mood phi~"

I turned in my bed to pick a book from the side table instead, "Oh come on Newwiee~", that is the tone she uses when she wants something done, "we hardly get time together, P'Kay is always busy."

"Fine."

We walk downstairs and they have already set up everything from popcorn to drinks. The room is darkened and the movie is about to play. It starts with cheery music but I miss the name.

"It is highly recommended by my friends.", P'Mew chips in.

"If it turns out boring, I'm out.", P'Kay grunts.

"Me too~", I agree.

The movie is good till the story starts picking and I realize where it is going. I hate for choosing this movie.

"You chose this purposely right?", I asked in a low tone.

"Wait, what's wrong?", P'Mew looks confused

"I know you chose this movie purposely!", I stood from my place and glared at my sister.

"Hey, that's not the way you talk to your sister New."

"You could have chosen a better way to mock me then!", I screamed at both of them and stormed out of the living room leaving them stunned.

I walked to my room and curled myself into a crying mess for the first time about everything that transpired since the trip and wallowing myself in self-pity. I heard a knock on my door and quickly pulled a duvet over myself.

"We are coming in.", P'Kay said firmly.

I felt the bed dip beside me and someone tried to tug the duvet. I held my breath not stifle but I ended up with a broken go-away.

"Newwiee~", P'Mew brushed her fingers over my hair just like Mom used to do when I was young.

"I said go away!", it came like a whine.

"You can talk to us.", P'Kay said calmly.

"What do you want me to talk about?", I sat up throwing away the duvet. They looked visibly shocked by my state.

"What happened during the trip?", P'Mew asked.

I scoffed, "the trip, right! That is the cause of everything."

They waited for me to continue.

"What? Do you want to know how my almost-boyfriend just dumped me because he thought-no-assumed that his brother likes me and I like him back? do you want to know how he assumed things without talking and got into an accident? or how his brother confessed to me when all I saw him was a best friend?"

I was a mess again and P'Mew pulled me into a hug. I let myself break down at home.

"Go wash your face, you look like shit.", P'Kay said after I felt a little calm.

I glared at him and made an angry pout before walking away.

"Be a little kind na?", I heard P'Mew say but I couldn't hear the response.

He was right, I did look shit, my nose was red and my eyes were puffy with hair sticking up in all directions. I washed my face and went back to my room. They both were talking in hushed tones but as soon as I walked they acted nonchalantly and waited for me to say something.

I did talk a lot after that, I told them everything. They listened patiently with occasional scoffs from P"Kay.

"Wow.", P'Kay had a mocking tone, "Firstly you are dating a guy?", for a minute I was scared might not like it that I'm gay, "and secondly, you have two guys hooked? Way to go brother, I didn't know you were a player.", P'Mew and I sighed simultaneously.

"Um, I kind of knew what goes around this house but I was too busy to hear the whole story."

"So now that you have given them space for thinking, have you tried talking to them again?", P'Mew asked seriously.

"I have been avoiding Earth after the trip. He came to talk to me but I didn't want to listen so I just we'll talk later."

"Avoiding the problem just makes it bigger Newwiee", P'Kay said gently, "Now that you have taken space, try talking to them."

"I don't think Tay will want to talk to me again...", I admitted it meekly.

They glanced at each other but P'Kay continued, "I'm only going to say this once, that boy adores you and has been since you were young. We have you seen you grown up."

"Are you sure?"

"Yup!"

"So, just go talk to him"

***

"New.", Earth stopped me as I was about to exit the class. There was pin-drop silence around us as they waited for us to argue or snap at each other.

"Let's talk somewhere else.", I said slowly and left.

Once we were safe from the earshot of other people, I turned to face him and waited for the explanation. He apologized and he knew he was wrong but I had zoned out after a few words because I was still stuck over how to talk to his brother about this.

"He is Chaing Mai."

"Why?"

"Mom told him to stay with grandma for few days."

"Aow, okay."

"I'm going to Chaing Mai, you can come with me."

"Yes...", I said after a thought, "and if you really want to apologize, say that to Mix and talk out with him."

"I'll try my best."

***

The weekend arrived on the brink and we were on the flight to Chaing Mai. I was a nervous mess and my best friend wasn't helping either. He had successfully talked Mix into joining us as he too had some relatives there. I don't know how he talked to Mix but they were back on good terms. The two hours flew by pretty quickly and before we knew it, we were breezing through the thick vegetation of Chaing Mai taking in the fresh air.

They reached the old house gate and were greeted by Khaotang, their pet dog. Earth opens the door and it jumps on him and in his arms directly. New stays away from that because he knows that dog is not really fond of him. Grandma Nart opens the main door of the house and waits for them to join.

"Earthiee~", she pulls her grandson in a hug.

"I missed you, grandma.", Earth says softly while New stands behind him awkwardly.

"oh, who have you got here? Is that... Newwiee?"

Grandma remembers me, New thinks to himself and formally wais at her, "Swadee Kha Grandma..."

"Awh... Newwiee you have grown up so well."

"How are you, grandma?"

"I'm well, child, come on."

"Yes."

"I can't believe the kid who wetted his pants looking at his elder brother grew up so well."

"Grandma! You still remember that?"

"Wait, what did I miss?", Earth asked looking between us.

"Once, when you had left New here and ran away. He was feeling scared and Tay came in his singlet. I was chiding him when he noticed that New had wetted his pants. Tay had taken him away to change and I kept wondering if I was chiding Tay too loudly.", Grandma started laughing with Earth while I was still embarrassed about the incident as it was still vivid in my mind. I dirtied my pants with something sticky and I was scared it was something weird.

We continued laughing as she recounted incidence from the past about Tay and Earth, in some I was included as well. I came here with them for Loy Krathong for a few years. It was listening to grandma's view on us and I could clearly see that she missed us here. If things go well with P'Tay, I'll definitely come back more often, I thought to myself.

"Grandma... where is Tay?"

"He said he will go swimming and then for a walk maybe. I would suggest you be careful around him. He looks in a grumpy mood ever since he is here.", she warns me.

"I might be the reason, grandma..."

"You? What can a sweet kid like you do?"

I shook my thinking everything that transpired that has got us to this point, "everything, I'll go look for him first then."

"Sure."

I walk to the backside of the house towards their large swimming pool. The water looks calm with one person floating around like a starfish. I watch him as he stares upwards at the ceiling thinking about gods know what. Not to startle him, I take off my shoes and dip my feet on the side and wait for him to notice me which he does as soon as my feet cause ripples in the water. He loses his balance sinking in the water before coming sputtering to the surface.

"New?", he questions.

"Hey?"

He looked around confused and took a dip to swim closer to me. I could feel him tickle my feet right before surfacing beside me.

"what are you doing here?", he asked surprised.

"meeting you?"

He stared at me, I was squirming under his intense gaze when he pulled me close and attached our lips. Home is what I felt as I let him pull me into the water with him. The water seeped in my clothes as I clung to him for my dear life because I knew he was the only one who was going to keep afloat.

Chapter Text

New

I had decided to keep my distance well and I thought I will be able to till every night the guilt for the misunderstanding ate me inside. I ignored Earth whenever he came to talk, with Gun it was mostly about school things and with Mix we had shifted to being empathic to each other.

At home, after the trip, P'Mew and P'Kay were aware of something was wrong, but I chose not to tell them. They kept looking at me with worried glances during dinner as I toyed around with my food for the most time.

I kept lying to myself that everything was fine but my inner turmoil was slowly winding on itself. I had lost my best friend as well as my boyfriend. I wanted to blame Earth for doing this but I knew it was my fault. I should have handled it well and talked to both of them.

It was the weekend and I was moping around in my room when P'Mew popped in my room.

"Are you free?", she asked cheerily.

"Hmm?"

"P'Kay is home today, should we watch a movie just like the old times?"

"I'm not in the mood phi~"

I turned in my bed to pick a book from the side table instead, "Oh come on Newwiee~", that is the tone she uses when she wants something done, "we hardly get time together, P'Kay is always busy."

"Fine."

We walk downstairs and they have already set up everything from popcorn to drinks. The room is darkened and the movie is about to play. It starts with cheery music but I miss the name.

"It is highly recommended by my friends.", P'Mew chips in.

"If it turns out boring, I'm out.", P'Kay grunts.

"Me too~", I agree.

The movie is good till the story starts picking and I realize where it is going. I hate for choosing this movie.

"You chose this purposely right?", I asked in a low tone.

"Wait, what's wrong?", P'Mew looks confused

"I know you chose this movie purposely!", I stood from my place and glared at my sister.

"Hey, that's not the way you talk to your sister New."

"You could have chosen a better way to mock me then!", I screamed at both of them and stormed out of the living room leaving them stunned.

I walked to my room and curled myself into a crying mess for the first time about everything that transpired since the trip and wallowing myself in self-pity. I heard a knock on my door and quickly pulled a duvet over myself.

"We are coming in.", P'Kay said firmly.

I felt the bed dip beside me and someone tried to tug the duvet. I held my breath not stifle but I ended up with a broken go-away.

"Newwiee~", P'Mew brushed her fingers over my hair just like Mom used to do when I was young.

"I said go away!", it came like a whine.

"You can talk to us.", P'Kay said calmly.

"What do you want me to talk about?", I sat up throwing away the duvet. They looked visibly shocked by my state.

"What happened during the trip?", P'Mew asked.

I scoffed, "the trip, right! That is the cause of everything."

They waited for me to continue.

"What? Do you want to know how my almost-boyfriend just dumped me because he thought-no-assumed that his brother likes me and I like him back? do you want to know how he assumed things without talking and got into an accident? or how his brother confessed to me when all I saw him was a best friend?"

I was a mess again and P'Mew pulled me into a hug. I let myself break down at home.

"Go wash your face, you look like shit.", P'Kay said after I felt a little calm.

I glared at him and made an angry pout before walking away.

"Be a little kind na?", I heard P'Mew say but I couldn't hear the response.

He was right, I did look shit, my nose was red and my eyes were puffy with hair sticking up in all directions. I washed my face and went back to my room. They both were talking in hushed tones but as soon as I walked they acted nonchalantly and waited for me to say something.

I did talk a lot after that, I told them everything. They listened patiently with occasional scoffs from P"Kay.

"Wow.", P'Kay had a mocking tone, "Firstly you are dating a guy?", for a minute I was scared might not like it that I'm gay, "and secondly, you have two guys hooked? Way to go brother, I didn't know you were a player.", P'Mew and I sighed simultaneously.

"Um, I kind of knew what goes around this house but I was too busy to hear the whole story."

"So now that you have given them space for thinking, have you tried talking to them again?", P'Mew asked seriously.

"I have been avoiding Earth after the trip. He came to talk to me but I didn't want to listen so I just we'll talk later."

"Avoiding the problem just makes it bigger Newwiee", P'Kay said gently, "Now that you have taken space, try talking to them."

"I don't think Tay will want to talk to me again...", I admitted it meekly.

They glanced at each other but P'Kay continued, "I'm only going to say this once, that boy adores you and has been since you were young. We have you seen you grown up."

"Are you sure?"

"Yup!"

"So, just go talk to him"

***

"New.", Earth stopped me as I was about to exit the class. There was pin-drop silence around us as they waited for us to argue or snap at each other.

"Let's talk somewhere else.", I said slowly and left.

Once we were safe from the earshot of other people, I turned to face him and waited for the explanation. He apologized and he knew he was wrong but I had zoned out after a few words because I was still stuck over how to talk to his brother about this.

"He is Chaing Mai."

"Why?"

"Mom told him to stay with grandma for few days."

"Aow, okay."

"I'm going to Chaing Mai, you can come with me."

"Yes...", I said after a thought, "and if you really want to apologize, say that to Mix and talk out with him."

"I'll try my best."

***

The weekend arrived on the brink and we were on the flight to Chaing Mai. I was a nervous mess and my best friend wasn't helping either. He had successfully talked Mix into joining us as he too had some relatives there. I don't know how he talked to Mix but they were back on good terms. The two hours flew by pretty quickly and before we knew it, we were breezing through the thick vegetation of Chaing Mai taking in the fresh air.

They reached the old house gate and were greeted by Khaotang, their pet dog. Earth opens the door and it jumps on him and in his arms directly. New stays away from that because he knows that dog is not really fond of him. Grandma Nart opens the main door of the house and waits for them to join.

"Earthiee~", she pulls her grandson in a hug.

"I missed you, grandma.", Earth says softly while New stands behind him awkwardly.

"oh, who have you got here? Is that... Newwiee?"

Grandma remembers me, New thinks to himself and formally wais at her, "Swadee Kha Grandma..."

"Awh... Newwiee you have grown up so well."

"How are you, grandma?"

"I'm well, child, come on."

"Yes."

"I can't believe the kid who wetted his pants looking at his elder brother grew up so well."

"Grandma! You still remember that?"

"Wait, what did I miss?", Earth asked looking between us.

"Once, when you had left New here and ran away. He was feeling scared and Tay came in his singlet. I was chiding him when he noticed that New had wetted his pants. Tay had taken him away to change and I kept wondering if I was chiding Tay too loudly.", Grandma started laughing with Earth while I was still embarrassed about the incident as it was still vivid in my mind. I dirtied my pants with something sticky and I was scared it was something weird.

We continued laughing as she recounted incidence from the past about Tay and Earth, in some I was included as well. I came here with them for Loy Krathong for a few years. It was listening to grandma's view on us and I could clearly see that she missed us here. If things go well with P'Tay, I'll definitely come back more often, I thought to myself.

"Grandma... where is Tay?"

"He said he will go swimming and then for a walk maybe. I would suggest you be careful around him. He looks in a grumpy mood ever since he is here.", she warns me.

"I might be the reason, grandma..."

"You? What can a sweet kid like you do?"

I shook my thinking everything that transpired that has got us to this point, "everything, I'll go look for him first then."

"Sure."

I walk to the backside of the house towards their large swimming pool. The water looks calm with one person floating around like a starfish. I watch him as he stares upwards at the ceiling thinking about gods know what. Not to startle him, I take off my shoes and dip my feet on the side and wait for him to notice me which he does as soon as my feet cause ripples in the water. He loses his balance sinking in the water before coming sputtering to the surface.

"New?", he questions.

"Hey?"

He looked around confused and took a dip to swim closer to me. I could feel him tickle my feet right before surfacing beside me.

"what are you doing here?", he asked surprised.

"meeting you?"

He stared at me, I was squirming under his intense gaze when he pulled me close and attached our lips. Home is what I felt as I let him pull me into the water with him. The water seeped in my clothes as I clung to him for my dear life because I knew he was the only one who was going to keep afloat.

Chapter Text

New

We sat on the edge of the pool after our toe-curling kiss in the pool. I had wrapped the towel around myself waiting for Te to come back with some dry clothes. 

"Here.", he sat beside me dipping his feet in the pool, handing the dry set of clothes which I took.

"The kiss doesn't solve everything Tawan!", I said haughtily and left leaving him dumbstruck. 

I never dared to call him by his name but after that stunt and everything we have gone through, I think it was okay. I quickly washed up with a quick shower and walked out wearing Te's old clothes. I walked to the pool but he had disappeared, a sudden fear of abandonment filled me and I started looking around frantically. 

"Who are you looking for?", he came from nowhere and I turned around to face him. 

"WHAT THE HELL TE!", I shouted, "Where were you? I told you to wait na?"

"I was just in the storeroom, babe..."

"DO YOU THINK ITS A JOKE?"

"No Newwiee, okay calm down.", he stared at me intently and held my shoulders to calm me down, "Breath with me...."

"In...", I followed his lead and breathed in, "and out...", I followed.

"Are you okay?", he wiped my cheeks. 

"Fine."

"Talk to me.", he cupped my cheeks as I looked away with my eyes blurry from tears.

"I was scared..."

"Why?"

"I thought you left."

"I can't run away from here."

"With you, it's always like that, I didn't confess to you all these just because of this. I knew you would run away, far far away from me the moment you know I'm in love with you all my life. I didn't want that so I kept it to myself and finally when I decided to confess, everything changed. We were doing good and I talked to Earth about everything but again you assumed things and- "

He pulled me into his embrace and my voice muffled as I rested my head on his shoulder, "I'm not leaving Hin, I just needed... some time..."

I sniffled in response as my tears were free-flowing, "I'm not leaving.", he said more firmly, tightening his hold around me. The next that happened made me gasp, he lifted a little and let me wrap my legs around his waist like a momma Koala bear. I didn't know where we were headed but I enjoyed the ride till he sat down with me in his lap. 

"Are you okay now?", he pulled me back slightly but I kept my head buried in his neck.

"Hmmm...", I suddenly started feeling shy as our crotches rubbed against each other under the thin material of our pants. 

"I liked you too, New. I really did but things that happened after Earth confessed made me rethink a lot of things. Mom sent me to Chiang Mai to figure out my feelings. She wanted to put some space between me and Earth for us to think."

"That night, Mix told me how he felt about Earth and when he confessed to you, it hurt him so much. He drank and cried himself to sleep. I sat there thinking how some of our selfish decisions could destroy things but also could make things better and when I should have intervened but I didn't... I'm sorry New, I hurt in my process of acceptance but now I want to say this to you officially.", he tugged at me and I sat up. 

"Will you be my boyfriend?", His eyes were sincere and I knew that he meant it this time. My eyes welled up again and I nodded. He closed the distance between us and captured my lips. It was a slow and soft kiss just like he was tasting them for the first time. A quick bit on my lower lip followed a hot trail invading me. I held his shoulder for support as he tilted my head slightly for more access. The kiss poured his love for me. 

***

"Oh, you both are back, thank god. It was getting late and I was going to send Earth to look out for both of you.", Grandma Nart said as soon as we walked into the house, "Tay, you look better now...", she commented smirking. 

"Yes... my faen is here, Yai"

"Take good care of him now.", she said sincerely while I looked away as my ears burned from embarrassment. 

"I should...", Tay leaned near my ear whispering, "take a bite, it's tempting."

"What are you saying?", I pushed him away as he chuckled. 

"If you both are done, P'Tay can we talk?", Earth asked us bringing us out of our bubble. Tay immediately got serious and nodded. 

"Tell Yai that we'll be back.", he said before walking out. 

I nodded and walked away to help Yai Nart in making the famous papaya salad. She told me a few tricks in cooking and some of Tay's favorite dishes as well. These two were talking till late so I video called Mew and P'Kay. They talked to Yai Nart like always. Mom and Dad also came to say Hi once. Grandma kept praising me while Mew kept telling her to give me more work.

"New", she said after we hung up the call. 

"Yes, Yai."

"I'm so happy to know that Tay has you as a partner. I know you are younger than him but you both are a perfect match still. I see the way you both have cared about each other since you were 5 and 6 years old and I hope you can do that for a long time. Our Tay can be a little handful sometimes but he will learn..."

"Yai... Thank you for your blessing. We will be together for a long time."

Just then the brothers walked in laughing about something. Grandma and New exchanged knowing looks as they called them for dinner.