Donghyuck was never much of a morning person.
He liked staying up late, until the crack of dawn, gaming away on his pc. He preferred going to bed when the sun was slowly making its way up into the sky, turning it a soft purple and pink. There was absolutely no need for him to wake up early to get things done when he fully utilized all the hours of the night. It just made sense. Maybe not to everyone, but it did to him. It worked out for the most part too, unless he had an early schedule then it didn’t work out as well.
It also didn’t work out too well when his cuddle buddy was an early riser too.
He wasn’t sure where Mark picked up on the new habit from, but it was rather annoying, especially when Mark was his own personal heater.
Donghyuck felt the bed shift underneath his body as Mark stirred, trying to untangle the mess that was their limbs. Latching onto the arm that was still hanging over his hip, he slurried out groggily, “It’s too early…”
A soft laugh brushed against the nape of his neck, followed by a pair of warm lips mapping their way across his skin, leaving goosebumps in its wake, making him shiver. “It’s almost ten, baby.”
At the mere mention of the time, Donghyuck couldn’t help but groan. Ten was definitely still too early for him to be awake. He cracked one eye open though, grimacing at the amber lights that shone in through the windows, bypassing the black-out curtains that Mark forgot to close last night. “You forgot to draw the curtains, again…”
“Maybe,” Mark pressed another kiss to his cheek, brushing back some of his baby hair, “I forgot on purpose.”
“And why the hell would you do that?”
“The best wake up call is the morning sun after all,” Mark answered, staring down at him fondly.
Donghyuck hated waking up early, but if he got the chance to stare into Mark’s eyes like that then he figured that it was worth it. Mark’s eyes were so lovely. They were a mix between the color of fine whiskey and morning coffee. He could stare into them all day and night long. He could drown in them too, get completely drunk on them. Even with a single glance, it could warm him right up on the coldness of days. On those days, wrapped up in between the sheets and Mark’s body, his eyes were swirls of sweet cinnamon.
Mark was warm. He would always think of Mark that way. Donghyuck thought that of him when he first met Mark and eight years later, his feelings were still the same. It was a warmth that began in his chest, little at first before it blossomed, spreading through his veins, reaching towards the tips of his fingers and toes. There was no one else that could possibly make him feel the same way that Mark made him feel, not even an ounce the same.
The love that Mark held came to him without warning. It simply arrived and took hold of his heart before he could even say no.
Letting his eyes fall shut once more, relishing in the warmth that was radiating from Mark’s body, he whispered, “Five more minutes…” He buried his face into the crook of Mark’s neck, breathing in the scent of his body wash that was lingering there.
Usually Mark was pretty good at giving in to all of his requests, especially if those requests meant more cuddling. So when Mark began to slowly pull away, Donghyuck couldn’t help but whine at the lost, shivering as the coldness of the morning seeped under the blankets. Not to mention his toes and fingers always got cold pretty easily.
At his grumpiness, Mark shook his head and laughed, his warm breath tickling at his cheeks. Mark placed another kiss along his hairline, a poor attempt at trying to coax him out of bed. When one didn’t work, Mark kissed him again, that time on the nose, then finally on the lips.
“While I do love your kisses a lot,” Donghyuck hummed, smiling lazily under all the love and attention that Mark was currently showering him with, “they’re not going to be enough to drag me out of bed with you.”
“You’re impossible, do you know that?”
Pulling away from where he was hiding in Mark’s neck, Donghyuck caught those lovely brown eyes again. “Only when it comes to you, dork.”
Mark rolled his eyes fondly in response, gaze incredibly warm afterwards too. “Yes, but I’m a dork who’s in love with you.”
“Hmm, I love you too, but sweet talk isn’t going to make me leave this bed with you either.” Donghyuck quipped. “You’ve tried this before so you should know this by now.”
He wasn’t sure how much time had passed since Mark left him and took all the warmth with him, but he figured that it was late enough because his stomach was growling at him in protest. Although he could definitely spend the whole day in the comfort of his bed, with it being an off day and all, which was a rarity.
Snagging Mark’s hoodie on the way out, Donghyuck threw it over his head, and took a deep breath of its wonderful scent. They all used the same detergent, but for some odd reason, Mark’s clothes always smelled just a little bit better than everyone’s else's. Donghyuck could totally be biased in that matter, but it was what it was.
It seemed like he was the last one to crawl out of bed because everyone was already sitting at the table, halfway finished with their meals. Even some of the dreamies were at the table, squeezing in on the ends of the benches to fit.
Digging the palm of his hands into his eyes to rub away at the lingering sleepiness in his eyes, he asked, “What’s for lunch today?”
There was a beat of silence that followed his question, one that he was not expecting at all. All clanging and clashing of chopsticks against the bowls ceased, along with the loud chatter that all the boys were doing too.
As fast as it came, the silence disappeared just as fast, all thanks to Renjun. “What the actual fuck this that ?”
Donghyuck frowned at his question, blinking his eyes blearily at the boys before him, who were staring back at him with equally wide eyes. Jungwoo even had his jaw dropped wide open, showcasing all of the food that still needed to be chewed. He grimaced at the sight.
“What?” Sliding into the only open seat left at the table, he looked at all of them with a raised eyebrow. He knew that he wasn’t the prettiest thing to see in the morning when his face was all swollen and curly hair a complete mess, but it wasn’t anything that they haven’t seen before.
“Donghyuck,” Renjun began, “what the fuck is that thing on your finger?”
“It’s a rock and it’s fucking huge like how do you not see it?” Donghyuck was taken aback by the way Renjun’s voice rose in pitch. “You’re wearing it! It’s right there on your finger.”
Brain finally waking up and catching up to the words that Renjun was spewing, he threw his head back and laughed. “You mean the matching rings that we got with the rest of the dreamies?”
“Donghyuck,” Jaemin drawled, inserting himself into the conversation with an exasperated sigh. “We all have those rings, and what you have on your finger is definitely not it.”
Renjun nodded his head fervently. “Look at your hand, because that’s a fucking Cartier Love Ring . And it has fucking diamonds , plural, like eight fucking huge diamonds on it.”
What? Donghyuck froze, stopping mid-bite.
On the other side of the table, Doyoung added, “I should really wash Renjun’s mouth with soap for all the f-bombs he’s dropping right now, but I don’t think that there’s really any other way to say it because damn, that is one hell of a ring.”
Finally glancing down at his left hand, Donghyuck sucked in a breath at what he saw, because there, sitting on his left ring finger was the most goddamn beautiful ring in the world. One that definitely was not there when he went to bed the night before and between now and then, the only person that had been with him was Mark.
Mark gave him the ring and he must have slipped it on his finger while he was sleeping.
It was silver, matching in color with the ring that he got with the rest of the dreamies. The only prominent difference between the two rings were the bright, shiny diamonds embedded into the silver band. As he flexed his fingers under the kitchen lights, Donghyuck could only stare in awe, his heart growing fonder with each second. The smile that tugged at his lips was unstoppable.
He never would have thought that seeing a set of diamonds on his left ring finger would take his breath away like that, but Donghyuck figured that anything that had any connection to Mark always did. Mind at a complete loss, all that he managed to breath out was a faint, " Oh ."
At his response, Chenle gripped the edge of the table and shrieked out, "Oh? Mark practically confessed his undying love for you and all that you can say is oh ?"
"Well, I just got proposed to during my sleep and I have absolutely no fucking recollection of it," Donghyuck commented, eyes still glued to the ring on his finger, "so please excuse me if I'm unable to form something more coherent." Then bringing his hand closer to his face to admire it, he added softly, "I can not believe Mark got me this... someone pinch me."
Jungwoo immediately volunteered himself and pinched his cheeks, blunt nails digging into his skin. By his side, he could hear Doyoung and Renjun whine at the lost of a chance to torture him.
Yelping at the sudden pain that rocketed through his body, his cheeks tingling, Donghyuck swatted the older boy away. "Yeah, definitely not a dream," he muttered out loud, more so to himself than anyone else.
"Yeah, it's not a dream." Renjun hummed before bringing his hands up to shield his eyes. "As beautiful as that ring is, can you please put it away. I'm pretty sure I'm losing my eyesight from how blinding it is. The light reflecting off it is penetrating my retinas."
From across the table, Jungwoo had his hands clasped together, staring off dreamily in the distance. "I'm so proud of Mark and I'm so happy for you guys."
"How did he even know that I wanted this? And when did he even get it?" Donghyuck wondered. "This is like the most un-Mark thing that he would do ever."
"What do you mean un-Mark ? This is quite frankly the most Mark thing ever ." Johnny came to Mark's defense as he entered the room. Leveling him down with a pointed look as the rest of the boys gave their shouts of agreement, he snorted, "And you should have totally expected this, Donghyuck. When Doyoung and Taeyong got their rings, you kept on going on and on, for days , whining about it. Even if Mark wouldn't have gotten you one out of love, he would have gotten one to shut you up."
"For how long you've been together, including all those early years of ridiculous pinning you two did, I would have thought that you would have figured out that Mark is nothing but a romantic sap." Doyoung inputed quietly from the sidelines, shaking his head at their supposed stupidity.
"Yes! Mark is super duper romantic." Jungwoo gasped, eyes wide, and waving his hands around animatedly. "He's like heads over heels for you. He's so in love with you that it makes him look like a fool. I know that you're clingy and extra, but dude, I don't think you've noticed how crazy Mark is for you."
"Like if we struggle with trying to get you to shut up in general, then us trying to shut Mark up about talking about you is even worse. It's always Donghyuck that, Haechan this. Nonstop. All day, every day." Renjun explained with a loud groan. Then slumping against the table, he cried out, "And don't even get me started on the time that you broke your leg... I don't think I've heard Mark talk so much before in my life. It was also like he was incapable of saying anything other than your name."
Donghyuck knew that Mark had missed him greatly during that time period, but he didn't think it was that bad. "I didn't know..."
"Of course you didn't. Mark didn't want to bother you while he was recovering so he bothered everyone else."
"Honestly, I thought it was cute. Mark fretting and worrying about you like that." Jungwoo smiled. "You should also ask about all the songs he wrote for you while you were gone."
" What?" It seemed like he was going to discover every little secret that Mark kept from him right then.
To be honest though, Donghyuck was well aware that he was Mark's muse for many of the lyrics he wrote— Baby Don't Like It was a classic example. It always boosted his already inflated ego just a little bit more and it made his heart so warm that he smiled himself silly as a result. Mark always got too excited about them so it never took him long before Donghyuck would hear all about it, allowing him to give Mark his own inputs and opinions about it too. But the songs that Mark supposedly wrote for him during his little break? He never heard a single thing about them until then.
Mark seemed to owe him a lot of answers and explanations that day, but for now, he could afford to wait a little longer to get those, because he was rather occupied about something else.
Resting his face over the top of his knuckles, Donghyuck gave all the boys a pretty smile, saying, "So tell me all about Mark and the time that I broke my leg."
If a chorus of groans answered his request, Donghyuck all but smiled a little wider.
It wasn't all that hard to find Mark.
Out of the many recording rooms that the company had, Mark always chose the one on the top floor, the first room on the right.
Peeping in through the glass window, Donghyuck smiled at the sight of him slightly hunched over his guitar, strumming a couple notes experimentally. Not even bothering to knock on the door, he entered in, footsteps light against the carpet floors. He knew how it was when Mark was deep in the zone and he really should have waited until Mark was finished, but he couldn't hold himself back any longer.
Draping himself all over Mark's back, Donghyuck shoved his left hand right in front of Mark's eyes, so close that he nearly knocked Mark's glasses off in the process. "Mark."
It was quiet for a beat as Mark took in a deep breath, hands dropping from his guitar to hold onto the hand that Donghyuck extended out in front of them, intertwining their fingers together. "Well, that's a nice ring."
"Nice?" He gasped, not believing his ears. He was appalled at Mark’s choice of words. "It's fucking gorgeous. Beautiful. Amazing." Wiggling the fingers for emphasis, Donghyuck said, "I can not believe that word you chose to use was nice. Unbelievable."
"I can't possibly use the word beautiful because that is reserved specifically for you and nothing nor no one else." Mark spoke, those warm brown eyes that he loved staring up at him.
Heart thumping in his chest and blood rushing through his veins, Donghyuck didn't think that he could be anymore in love with the man before him. He also couldn't believe that he even thought Mark as anything less than romantic, especially when Mark spoke like that, waxing pretty poetry about him on the daily.
"I love you," Donghyuck breathed, unable to hold it in any longer. "I love you so, so much Mark Lee."
"And I love you too, Lee Donghyuck." He watched as Mark lifted their clasped hand up to his lips before he kissed every one of his knuckles, lingering just a second longer when Mark got to his ring finger. If his heart wasn't ready to burst out from his chest before, then it certainly was now. "I have loved you since the day we've met and I knew for a fact that you were the only one for me."
Huffing out a laugh, Donghyuck said, "I'm pretty sure that you hated me when we first met. Let's be honest now."
Mark merely shrugged and kissed his ring again. "There's a fine line between love and hate. I was young and I didn't know exactly what that feeling was. So being the fool I was, I turned those feelings into hatred. Of course, I know what those feelings are now."
"After so many years, I would hope that you know that." Donghyuck teased.
"Oh, trust me. I know ." Mark promised. Not letting their hands separate even for a moment, Mark gently placed his guitar on the ground and spun around in his chair until they were face to face. "I don't think I can fully explain in words the feelings — the love that I hold for you, but I could try. I mean it would be pretty embarrassing if I couldn't do it some justice considering I'm a rapper and all."
"Mark...," he breathed out, not entirely sure if he was ready for what Mark was about to say next because it was already too much. Donghyuck knew that if Mark spoke anymore, he would probably faint.
"I only see you in my eyes. Whether I'm awake or asleep, my eyes can't help but gravitate towards you. It's like I'm a moth and you're the light — which you are. You're the sun and so much more. You're the only one for me, truly. Back when we were young, I never knew what it was like to be drunk, but I was definitely drunk on you, without a doubt. It was you and it will always be you. All I want is you, Lee Donghyuck. And I promise you for the rest of my life, you're my first and last love."
Choked up on the sincerity and all the love that Mark managed to twist together into his words, Donghyuck could barely breathe. "You know... that sounds a whole lot like a proposal.”
"I mean," Mark brought his hands up, thumbing at the silver band, saying, "I thought I already did.”
Rolling his eyes. Donghyuck scoffed at him, more fond than anything. "I'm pretty sure that I didn't even say yes."
“Yet,” Mark laughed, throwing his head back, brown eyes catching his, shining brightly. "Like you were going to say no."
"But I could have." Donghyuck pushed, attempting to hold up the act for a little longer, but it was a futile attempt, because his need to kiss Mark absolutely senseless was growing impossible to hold back. Lowering himself onto Mark's lap, Donghyuck untangled their fingers to cup Mark's face instead. "Also, it would have been nice to have a matching set. I already rubbed it in Doyoung's face that my ring is better than the ones that he got, but being able to rub our rings, together, in his face would have been amazing ."
"Already way ahead of you, baby." Mark smiled at him, full and wide as he tugged on the metal chain hanging around his neck out from under his hoodie. Letting it fall into the center of his waiting palm, Mark kissed him once, softly on the lips. "Now you can rub it in Doyoung's face all you want."
Twirling the ring in between his fingers and watching the way that the diamonds glistened underneath the studio's lights, identical to the one he had on his left hand, Donghyuck felt like he was the luckiest man in the entire universe. "God, I love you so much."