Kevin didn't know how he let himself get talked into this. He'd said before that he would be willing to try bungee jumping just one time in his life, but that came into question when the opportunity actually arose. Some members (Eric) were absolutely thrilled when they were told that they were going to be filming for something or other and would be bungee jumping. Kevin knew that he wouldn't be forced to do it if he didn't want to. He knew that he could choose to just sit back and watch, like a few members already had. He was given the option to back out without judgement, but at the end he just thought fuck it, why not and agreed.
Now, as he was standing at the edge of a platform, having already signed a waiver and been hooked up to a harness, he was starting to regret that decision. He hadn't expected to be this scared. He had never been particularly afraid of heights, but right now he couldn't think of anything more terrifying than the thought of throwing himself off this structure and free falling for several hundred feet. He could barely hear the encouraging cheers of his members over the pounding of blood in his ears. Haknyeon, Chanhee, and Sangyeon had all already went, and they were all fine. He could do this.
Without giving himself more time to overthink it, Kevin spread his arms and jumped. It was unlike anything he'd ever felt before. The moment he was in the air but hadn't yet begun to fall was simultaneously the most terrifying and most freeing thing he'd ever experienced. When he was falling, his heart lurched and the slightly chilly air on his face stung his eyes a bit, but it felt good. It almost felt like he was flying. After a few seconds, he felt a slight tugging sensation on his back and he started to slow down just a bit, before that feeling went away and he sped up again. He didn't have time to hold his breath or brace himself. He barely even had time to register that something went wrong before he hit the water.
His entire body stung, as if he had been slapped all over. His ears were ringing and his chest was burning from the water he'd gotten in his lungs during the fall, and in one absolutely horrifying second, he realized that he didn't know which way was up down left or right. All his limbs felt as if they were 20lbs heavier than they actually were as he flailed about in a state of absolute panic. For some reason, he tried to scream for help despite the fact that nobody would be able to hear him, and as he ran out of air and his body instinctively took a breath that only choked him, there was only one thought running through his mind. He was going to die.
Kevin felt a pulling on his back, similar to the one he had felt just before he'd been sent plunging to his demise, and a few moments later, somebody was pulling him onto dry land by the harness that was still attached to his body. He pushed himself onto his hands and knees as his body desperately tried to dispel the water that he had inhaled. There was a gentle hand patting his back as he choked and sputtered and shook uncontrollably. He vaguely registered somebody speaking to him, but he couldn't make out the words, as his body was much more focused on replenishing the oxygen it had been deprived of as he gasped for air in between coughs and rounds of vomiting.
"Kevin, can you hear me?" A voice that Kevin didn't even try to put a face to asked from beside him once the coughing had let up a bit. He nodded, even though it made his neck twinge in pain. He was stuck in a strange space between having so much adrenaline coursing through his veins that he couldn't feel anything, and registering that there wasn't a single part of his body that wasn't screaming in pain.
"Okay, that's good. I know you must be in a fuck load of pain right now, but what hurts the most?" The voice asked. Unsure if his voice would even work if he tried to use it, Kevin put a hand to his chest.
"I'm gonna take off your harness. If you need me to stop at any point just let me know, alright?" Kevin didn't approve, but he also didn't say anything when the person's arms wrapped around his torso to unbuckle the harness he had been strapped to.
Kevin vaguely heard sirens in the distance as somebody wrapped what felt like a towel around him. He welcomed the warmth it brought that counteracted the chill that seemed to have settled deep in his bones.
Kevin chose to zone out as an ambulance arrived, along with a slough of people trying to see what had happened. He tried to resist the urge to cry out as a medic poked and prodded at him, which was a battle he ultimately lost. He heard snippets of people talking about lawsuits and saw glimpses of people trying to run to get to him, but all his surroundings were starting to turn into one giant blur around him as he was lifted onto a stretcher, and into the back of an ambulance.
"You ready to go?" Younghoon asked as he helped Kevin to his feet. Kevin didn't think he was ready. Every muscle in his body was protesting against movement. Even changing his clothes took nearly twenty minutes, as any movement faster than that of a sloth proved nearly impossible. He couldn't even imagine how bad it would be if he wasn't pumped full of pain killers as he arrived at the hospital that had become his home for the next several hours before they cleared him to go home. Nevertheless, he stood up, and Younghoon wrapped an arm around his waist as they left the room and began the long trek to the car waiting in the parking lot.
Kevin grunted as he lifted his leg to step into the car. The only reason he was able to actually make it in was because Younghoon helped lift him, being careful to avoid his three broken ribs.
"Does it hurt a lot?" Their manager asked from the driver's seat, glancing back at the younger through the mirror as he buckled his seatbelt.
"About as much as you'd expect it to," Kevin said. Throughout the entire drive home, every time the car jostled him caused Kevin to wince, which Younghoon didn't seem to miss a single time. He just thanked the heavens when the car parked.
"Are you sure you guys will make it in okay on your own?" Their manager worried as Younghoon helped Kevin out of the car.
"Don't worry, I'll take good care of him," Younghoon said with a joking smile as he patted Kevin's shoulder gently, although the younger had a feeling he wasn't entirely joking. The older man gave a nod, but still waited until they made it inside the building before driving away.
Kevin heard Younghoon groan, and he looked up from where his eyes had been fixed on his feet to see that the elevator was out of service. Today really just wasn't his day. Younghoon bent down in front of him, but Kevin just gave him a confused look.
"Well what are you waiting for? Get on," Younghoon prompted as he looked at Kevin over his shoulder.
"Huh?" Kevin asked. Very eloquently, he may add.
"You could barely get into the car, I'm not gonna watch you try and make it up the stairs," Younghoon insisted. Kevin gave a sigh of resignation, knowing he wasn't going to win this (and secretly not wanting to), and latched his arms around Younghoon's neck. The walk up the stairs was much less jarring than the drive. In fact, it felt more like a gentle rocking, and the only thing that kept Kevin from just closing his eyes and falling asleep right there was Younghoon stopping every once in a while to make sure that "this is okay? It doesn't hurt?"
Kevin had barely even realized they entered the dorm until Younghoon set him down on his bed. Kevin never thought his bed would feel so good.
"You should eat something, you've been running on empty for a while," Younghoon commented.
"I guess I did puke a lot, didn't I?" Kevin hummed. Honestly, he only remembered bits and pieces of the whole ordeal, as everything had happened so fast. He began to sit up, but Younghoon pushed him back down, insisting that he would bring him something.
"Why are you staring at me like that?" Kevin asked. Sunwoo tried to look surprised, as if he didn't think Kevin would notice his eyes burning holes through him over the top of a book he was holding. "I don't look that bad, do I?"
"I mean, your face is covered in bruises," Sunwoo returned Kevin's small smile, but the elder could tell that he was scared shitless, although he couldn't exactly blame him. He would be too, if he watched the one thing you never wanted to happen while bungee jumping happen to one of his bandmates.
"Come here," Kevin beckoned as he scooted over, making room on his bed. Sunwoo did come, but stopped when he put a knee on the bed, looking to Kevin with something akin to fear on his face.
"Sit down, you're not gonna hurt me," Kevin assured. Sunwoo lowered himself onto the bed carefully, glancing up at Kevin every so often to make sure he wasn't lying.
Kevin didn't miss the slight upturn of Younghoon's lips when he came back into the room holding a sandwich, which he handed to Kevin before sitting on the floor beside the bed.
"Now you're both staring at me," Kevin commented with a half-full mouth, glancing between Sunwoo and Younghoon.
"I'm just really glad you're okay. We all are," Sunwoo said in a rare moment of vulnerability.
"Yeah, Sunwoo even cried," Younghoon said, prompting the younger to throw a sock that may or may not have been clean at him.
"Only because I thought you were dead!" He defended with an accusatory point at Younghoon. Kevin chuckled, ignoring the pain it brought his chest to do so. There was the Sunwoo he knew and loved.
"Well thank you so much for your concern," Kevin said as he ruffled the younger's hair fondly. "But I'm seriously fine. I'll just be out if commission for a few weeks and then I'll be good as new,"
Kevin couldn't remember a time he had been more exhausted than he was right then. Apparently almost drowning, breaking three ribs, a nose, and gaining a mild concussion in the process does that to a person. Kevin slept for fourteen hours that night. And if Sunwoo stayed right by his side for ten of those hours, nobody needed to know that.