Actions

Work Header

Aim At My Heart

Chapter Text

It was an early morning in late October when Mix stepped into the woods with a rifle slung across his back. The yellow leaves under his boots didn’t make crunchy sounds thanks to the light rain last night. The soil was moist, serving as a perfect mould for footprints. Mix turned to his right to see Luke smiling at him.

“Ready?”, Luke asked. “When ever was I not ready, Luke?”, Mix answered with a smirk on his face. Luke always liked that confident look on the younger one’s face. It gives him that mischievous look and also looks cute somehow.

“Alright. If you say so. But stay close to me, Mix. I don’t want you to wander off too far”, Luke told him. Mix pulled his feet together and saluted Luke as if saying ‘aye aye captain’ and Luke couldn’t resist ruffling the boy’s soft messy hair. Mix just shook his head and they started walking deeper into the woods.

Not many people come hunting during late October. Hunting season is almost over and there weren’t many prey left in the permitted areas. And normal hunters definitely wouldn’t dare approach the ‘Howling’ part of the forest. It wasn’t really an area banned by authorities but the torn bodies of curious minds who wandered into those forest grounds served as a warning for future wanderers. No hunters would risk their lives for whatever howling creatures existing there. No normal hunter would dare, except the sacred silvers.

After they walked a few miles into the forest, Mix noticed some hoof prints in the moist soil. ‘Hoof prints this size probably belong to a big moose’, Mix muttered under his breath. He followed the hoof tracks deeper and deeper into the woods that he didn’t even realise which part of the forest he was in. When he eventually spotted distinct antlers protruding from bushes in the distance, he smiled in satisfaction.

Mix quietly approached the bushes and stood from some distance good enough to take his aim. It wasn’t his first hunting trip. And Mix has been practicing at the shooting range with Luke so he doubts he’d miss this shot. He licked his lips as he narrowed one eye to focus through the magnifier. Grip tight and a finger wrapped around the trigger. ‘Oh this is gonna be a good one’, he thought.

Before his finger could bend, the animal shot its head up in alert. It wandered from right to left and looked towards where Mix was hiding. ‘Shit, it didn’t notice. Did it?’, Mix thought. His prey had already galloped away when Mix realised the ground began to rumble and a grizzly bear charged in his direction at full speed.

‘Shit shit shit shit’. He kept cursing in his head as he ran away from the huge bear chasing him. Funny how the tables have turned and the hunter is now the one being hunted. When Mix thought running wouldn’t do to escape this huge creature, he threw himself onto a tree and climbed it without looking back. He climbed and climbed until there was no branch strong enough to hold his weight and sat on one of the branches, his hands wrapped tight around the trunk.

He looked down to where the big bear was trying to claw the base of the three and shuddered. Imagine those claws scratching his skin… ‘No no no no let’s not even think about that’, Mix thought and reached for his rifle to shoot the bear. And that when he realised, he accidentally yeeted his rifle away somewhere in a rush while he was running for his life.

Fuck, he cursed again. What kind of hunter is stupid enough to throw away their guns while on a hunt?! Mix smacked his fist against the tree in anger. Now he can’t even signal Luke to come help let alone kill the bear. He would pray to ask his brother in heaven to send some guardian angels to come save him but Tay’s spirit is probably wandering in the Howling forest, where he was killed.

I’m such a failure for the family, aren’t I, Tay?, Mix whispered quietly into thin air.

A while later, Mix heard a loud gun shot and he turned his head to the source of the sound in hopes that Luke had finally found him. But no. The man holding Mix’s rifle wasn’t Luke. Yes, his rifle because Luke bought him that for his 23rd birthday, which was three days ago. The shiny new rifle, he can’t be wrong. The man was almost the same height as Luke, tanned skin with toned abs and thighs that are-

It took Mix a good few seconds to realise that the stranger with his rifle is in his naked glory! Who the fuck is naked at 6 am in the morning, he thought, looking at his wrist watch then glancing down again at the stranger. The rising morning sun has made its way through the leaves and the rays that landed on the tanned man’s skin gives out a golden hue.

“You ok up there?”, the strange man asked. Mix tried not to look directly at him. “Yup all good”.

“Do you need help getting down?”, the man asked again. “No no no I can come down by myself. Don’t bother”, he answered as he started to make his way down the tree. He’d made a lot of mistakes today since stepping into the forest. First, he wandered off despite Luke warning him to stay close; two, he threw away his rifle while on a hunt; and three, he took a wrong step down the tree.

If he was asked whether he regretted these mistakes, the cocky Mix would have answered no for the first two and a definite ’No’ for the third question because…

Mix let out a yelp and closed his eyes as he felt himself falling, waiting for his back to hit the ground but the ground never came. Instead he felt a pair of strong arms cradling him with the warmth of their skin. Mix shot his eyes open to see the stranger who had just caught him perfectly in his embrace.

Mix stared at the beautiful face and those sharp jawlines highlighted by the sunlight and felt the urge to just run his fingers along that jaw. But he snapped himself back to reality and jumped out of the man’s arms. “Th- thank you”, Mix stuttered. His eyes fixed on the other’s face and face only.

They both stood in silence for a while before Mix walked over to the dead bear to speculate. “Wow nice shot by the way. Right through the heart”, Mix complimented the naked stranger as he found a hole through the bear just above its forelimbs where blood was seeping out. No wonder the giant creature was dead in one shot.
The man approached Mix and with his hands folded against his chest he leaned against the tree that Mix just fell down from. “Your heart?”, he said, raising an eyebrow.

Flustered, Mix punched his arm and yelled, “The bear’s heart! You dumbass”. The stranger had a good belly laugh at Mix’s reaction with his whole body shaking. Mix tried not to investigate which parts of the man’s body shook and glared only at his face. “And by the way if you don’t mind me asking, why are you- well, naked at this early in the morning? And not to mention this cold weather? I’ve heard some crazy makeout stories in the forest but-“

“Do I look like I have accompany?”, the man said. Mix looked around and indeed there wasn't anyone else in that area other than them. Maybe Mix was overthinking or maybe he was just protecting himself but when he felt that he was in danger, Mix picked up his rifle that the man had just placed against the bear and pushed the strangely naked man with the stock of the rifle.

“Don’t- come close to me”, Mix stuttered even though he tried not to sound scared. “Woah that’s a dangerous way to hold a gun, young man”, the man said. He swiftly retrieved the gun with full strength but carefully not to touch the trigger and directed the aim upwards to the sky. Only then, Mix realised that he was holding the rifle from the front part of it with the trigger being on the other side. ‘Stupid!’, Mix mentally cursed himself.

Maybe Mix’s grip was too strong on the barrel when the man tried to remove the weapon from him because Mix himself was pulled towards the stranger along with the rifle. His hands landed on the strong shoulders, their faces almost touching and their lower bodies only a few inches a part. Mix felt blood rushing up to his face and quickly pushed the stranger away.

He snatched his rifle back from the man and stomped past him. “You shot the animal so it’s yours to keep”, he said as he walked away. Then he stopped in his tracks as though he had a second thought and removed his red flannel shirt that he wore over a white t-shirt. “Here. Wear this or at least cover your private part. We ain’t living in the Stone Age anymore”, he said, throwing his shirt at the naked stranger before walking away.

Mix walked back the way he came, or at least the way he thought he came, and saw a silhouette approaching him. Thankfully, this man was fully clothed and also had a familiar face. “Luke?”, he called out and the man ran to him. Luke hugged him first and foremost before bombarding him with questions.

“Where did you go off to? I told you to stay close. I heard a shot so I tried to follow the sound. Are you hurt? And-”

“Luke, I’m fine. And don't be worried like this all the time. I’m not a baby anymore, ok?”, he said, pushing Luke back a bit. Luke’s hands were still firm on Mix’s arm and he felt the coldness on the younger’s bare arms under his grip. “Mix, weren’t you wearing a shirt when we came? A red shirt”, Luke asked.

“Ahh yes that”, Mix muttered, awkwardly scratching his head. “I umm saw a lost dog- yes a lost dog who looked like he might freeze to death so I gave him my shirt”, he explained.

“You ‘give’ your shirt to the dog?”, Luke said, not really buying his story. “Yes, I gave it to him, Luke. Now let’s go back. Or else I might be the one who freeze to death here”.

Mix pushed him in the opposite direction from where he encountered the ‘lost dog’, hoping Luke doesn’t have to go through the terror he had to witness this morning. A golden hue kind of terror.

After they left the forest, Luke suggested they had breakfast at the diner nearby as usual. They ordered their food and Mix started munching on his pancakes as soon as they arrived. “Umm this is so good”, he moaned. “You always have the same dish and never get bored of it, do you?”, Luke said, amused. “Never”, Mix answered and shoved another chunk of pancake into his mouth.

“Alright, eat up. I’ll take you to uni later”, Luke offered. Mix looked up from his plate and shook his head. “No no it’s alright. I’ll go with Khao”, he replied. Khao, his best friend since birth. The two families were close allies and also Khao is the kind of quiet kid who stays out of trouble so his family trusts him with Khao.

“I’ll drive you both then”, Luke insisted. Mix swallowed his food and placed the utensils down on his plate. “Luke, I know what you’re worried about but isn’t this too much? It’s been five years since Tay passed. I know he’d entrusted me to you but you’re being too protective, Luke. As much as I appreciate you, I’d prefer it if you aren’t being too pushy you know?”.

Mix reached out to hold Luke’s hand in his and smiled. “You’re a good brother and a friend, Luke. And I don't want you to feel burdened to look after me because of Tay. Didn’t you say the silvers have already executed most of the wolves that night?”, Mix said.

Luke sighed and smiled weakly at Mix while still holding his hands. “You’re the only few of us left, Mix, and the most precious one to me. And I can’t help but worry. Yes, we did wipe them off in that fight. Well at least, most of them. Some escaped and I’m worried those ones would come back for revenge.”

Mix patted Luke’s hand gently. “Because of you, I don’t feel too sad or scared even though Tay is gone. Thanks for loving me like your own brother, Luke. I’m really glad to have you”, Mix said. Luke gave him another small smile and told him he’d let Mix go to uni with Khao.

Mix thanked him and continued eating his food. He’s got to fill up his stomach for later. It’s gonna be his first day of final year in undergrad and Mix can’t wait to graduate already. But he’d have to go through hell first for that. That is, thesis.

Chapter Text

“Final year here we come!”, Khao cheered and used his free hand to punch into the air , his voice roaring over the car radio. Not everyone got to see this loud chaotic side of his best friend. Khao was usually very calm and composed in the eyes of many. Mix wants to laugh every time people used the word ‘quiet’ to describe.

“Yeah just one more year man, one more year”, Mix said and sighed as he leaned back into the passenger seat. It wasn’t that he was unexcited about graduating. He was but perhaps not as much as when Tay was still there. The two brothers had planned on leaving the small town to start a new life in the bustling city. Tay wanted to work as a chef and Mix will continue his studies or try to find a clinic that takes in freshly graduated veterinarians. Then he would get to tend to the wounds of real animals and not the inhumanly scratches on the hunters’ bodies.

Him and Khao, a pharmacology student and a healer, were the emergency medics for the silvers. If any of the sacred silver members were attacked by their mortal enemies Khao’s house was the first place they’d be rushed to. This was also one of the reasons why Khao could be his friend and his best friend.

Khao came with a special heritage, his family being the only one in history to have healers. Healers were born not made, unlike the hunters. But most sacred silvers will train their descendents to continue on their legacy, to protect the people, like his uncle said.

Mix didn't have the chance to train as much as Tay did. And Tay being the overprotective brother that he is, delayed Mix’s training as much as possible. As much as he could convince his father to let Mix stay out of the hunters’ lives. Mix knew how much Tay loved him and how much he hated being a sacred silver. It’s nothing but meaningless hatred that brings deaths, Tay once said.

Mix remembered the night of the battle when almost every one of the silvers went into the Howling forest. It would have been Mix’s first hunt as a sacred silver if not for Luke’s interference. Luke told Tay that it would be dangerous for Mix since he had no experience yet and Tay immediately agreed. They two sworn brothers promised they would return home in one piece. Mix stayed back and waited for them anxiously with Khao.

When the familiar blue pick-up truck pulled over in front of their house at almost 3 am, Mix rushed out to see his brother but was greeted by the sight of a bloody Luke. Luke hugged him tight with his still blood soaked body and words of apologies repeatedly pouring out of his mouth.

Mix remembered feeling very numb, being unable to feel Luke’s body vibrating in his embrace. The older man’s loud sobs that were no longer audible to him. The most important person in his life died that day, along with his dreams and his future he planned with Tay. He shook his head roughly, trying to shake off the memories as if they would be thrown out of his head if he shook hard enough.

Khao turned to his best friend after he parked his car in the vacant spot. “Is everything alright?”, he asked. Mix stopped his action and looked up at Khao. “Yeah I’m fine. Just a headache”, Mix replied. Without any further questions, the two friends hopped off the car and went their separate ways to get to their first classes.

His first lecture for the day was marketing. It’s nothing related to veterinarian studies but it was a minor subject he had chosen out of interest. The university allowed their students to take up at least one subject outside of their major to broaden their knowledge. Mix chose marketing subjects so he could find a job easily when he and Tay moved to the city like they planned to.

There weren't many students in the theatre when he arrived so there were plenty of empty seats to choose from. He looked up at the rows of chairs ascending from the front of the room to the highest rows at the back just like they would in a cinema. Mix walked up the stairs and settled in a seat in the middle row so he’d be directly facing the projector slides.

Shortly after, two girls walked hand in hand and took their seats in front of him. The taller one turned around and introduced herself as Jan. She was rather too chatty for his liking and she asked Mix so many questions about himself that he can’t even remember what he answered her. Her friend who sat beside her scrolling on the phone screen, was petite with childish features who could have been mistaken for a junior high student.

A while later, the professor walked in with his brown leather briefcase and the sounds of chatters in the room gradually died down. “There’s going to be a bit of a surprise today”, the old professor told the class, “we will be starting the semester with a guest lecture. And I am proud to say that our honourable guest is a student alumni of our university, who is now successfully operating one of the biggest firms in our town. I assume you all probably know ElectroNet, the power supply company?”

The sound of chatters became alive again at the mention of ElectroNet, the company distributed electric power to over 60% of the household in this town. “Alright alright, from the active ‘discussions’ I’m hearing, I don’t think I need to particularly introduce the company to you. So now, let’s welcome Mr Earth Pirapat, CEO of ElectroNet”.

The sounds that had just died down were revived again, this time with loud claps and some squealing noises from the girls, especially from the two in front of Mix, as the handsome young CEO walked into the lecture theatre. The man looked dashing, perhaps in his 30s, he was wearing a faded blue suit and a white shirt with two buttons undone.

His perfectly styled hair was parted slightly in the middle and the glasses he was wearing almost tricked Mix. But it didn't take long for Mix to realise that the beautifully tanned skin under theatre lighting and that prominent jawline belonged to the same person he saw in the woods. The same man in his naked glory at 6 am in the morning.

The man walked towards the podium. He smiled handsomely in the audience's direction and the girls’ squealing became a little louder. The old professor shook his head slightly and chuckled. Earth quickly scanned the spacious room and the rows of chairs until his eyes landed on someone in the middle row. It wasn't hard to follow the familiar scent he just came across a few hours ago.

Shit, Mix cursed out loud but luckily his voice was drowned by the roaring claps that were still ongoing. He saw the CEO smiling at him and attempted to cover his face with the thick textbook. The two girls in front turned to look at him with confused expressions but quickly returned their attention to the dashing man at the podium. Mix knew he couldn’t hold up the textbook for the next two hours so he put it down and did his best to focus on the presentation and the presentation only.

But his curiosity got the better of him and Mix occasionally tried to steal glances at the man in front of the class, walking back and forth as he explained the company’s objectives and some examples of their marketing plans. Soon the two hours passed but Mix wasn’t able to absorb anything on the slides at all. Instead he spent the lecture hours planning to escape the room as quickly as possible.

Once the lecture was over, Earth thanked the professor and the students for giving him the chance for his talk and everyone clapped again, perhaps even louder than when he came in. Mix tried to squeeze through the crowd of students pouring out of the lecture theatre to make sure he wasn’t noticed by the person he encountered in the early morning. But it was his professor who made all his plans backfire.

“Mr Sahaphap”, the old man called out as Mix was passing the podium along with many other students. He mouthed a silent curse word before turning to his professor with a gleaming smile. “Yes sir?”, Mix answered and walked towards him. Even though he didn’t look at the man standing besides the professor, Mix could feel the other’s eyes were on him as he approached.

“I wanted to talk to you about the timetable. You’re taking this subject as your breadth, right?”

“Yes that’s right”

“Right and I’ve been told that you had a timetable clash between my lectures and your major subject classes. Is that so?”

“Oh right yes with some of my tutorials”

“I see. Well, I’ll see what I can do. Would you be fine with self-study? If that’s possible I will send you the lecture slides before each week. You can ask questions during my tutorials if you had any”, the professor told Mix and the young CEO who stood silently near the two listened to their conversation attentively.

Mix agreed and thanked his professor to get on with his day as soon as possible. He walked out of the room quickly and only slowed down when he had come far enough from the theatre. “Well that is some destiny”, he muttered and immediately slapped his mouth for letting the word ‘destiny’ slip out of his lips so easily.

“Mr Sahaphap?”, Mix heard someone called and felt his feet turned into stones when he recognised the voice. The voice he had just heard for the last two hours. The person who stopped him in his track approached him and stood next to him. “Umm yes?”, Mix replied as he turned to look at Mr Pirapat. How the hell did this man even find him? It’s not like he told anyone where he was going after his marketing lecture.

“I didn’t mean to pry into others’ business but I happened to have heard about your timetable clash”, Earth said immediately without any unnecessary greetings. “I just talked with your professor if it was possible to give credits for the subject if students were to do internships instead of classes. I happen to be needing some extra hand at my company these days so I want to offer you an internship. How does that sound?”, Earth asked.

Mix wondered if Earth didn’t recognise him at all or about what happened this morning. Mix quickly shook his head from left to right trying to shake out the memory. “No?”, the CEO asked. “No no I mean yes I would like to take the offer”, Mix said. Internship at a big company? It would be stupid if he passed the chance.

“Great. That’s settled then”, Earth nodded and reached inside his inner pocket to fish out a business card. “Send your resume to that email and I’ll contact you again after that”, he said and turned around to leave.

“Oh and since we will be meeting again anyways”, Earth said looking over his shoulder. “I’ll return your shirt the next time we meet”. Mix stood dumbfounded in the middle of the path as he watched the young businessman walking away from him.

‘So he remembered’, Mix thought to himself and felt his cheeks heating up. It wasn't even him who was seen naked by the other but why was he the one being shy? Mix shook his head again violently and strode towards his next class.

That evening Luke came to pick him up from the university. Mix opened the door to climb into the front seat and a whiff of cool evening air also invited itself into the vehicle. Luke immediately frowned and asked, “Mix, who were you with today?”

“Huh, what do you mean?”, Mix said, confused. “Um what I meant to say was- did you meet new friends? I mean considering that you’re already in your final year, I doubt there would be any new friends. Any foreign exchange students maybe?”, he asked. Mix can see that there was more to the question by the look on Luke’s face; curious, worried and even slightly angry.

“What are you getting at, Luke?”, Mix asked, his voice sounding rather annoyed. He felt being interrogated by strict parents and he wasn't even a teenager anymore. “Know what? Just forget it”, Luke said, waving one hand in the air. “What do you want for dinner?”, he asked instead.

Mix made a face at Luke, his brows knitted in the centre and face leaning closer to the driver’s seat, his lips forming a pout. “What?”, Luke said laughing heartily at the younger’s animated expression and reached out to ruffle Mix’s hair. Mix leaned back to his chair and fixed his hair. “How about fried chicken from that Korean place in Polaris mall?”, he suggested. “Sounds good”, Luke said and steered the car towards the mall.

Chapter Text

Mix was munching into his piece of soy garlic fried chicken, unaware of the mess he’d made on his lips. Luke chuckled and reached for a tissue to wipe the sauce off Mix’s face.

“Still eating like a kid, huh? How old are you? 5?”, Luke teased as he helped Mix clean up his mouth.

“So what? I’m just enjoying the food cuz it’s that delicious”, Mix said, pouting. “Oh and by the way, I’m starting an internship on Friday”.

“Internship? What for?”

“Just some office work. You know? I got lucky enough to have the CEO of ElectroNet himself offer me the internship today. He was doing a guest lecture for our class today and-”

 

“ElectroNet’s CEO? You mean Earth Pirapat?”, Luke asked.

“Yeah, him. Can you believe it?”, Mix said, grinning widely. Luke gave him a weak smile. So that explains the scent, he thought to himself.

“Do you have any clothes to wear for your first day at work?”, Luke asked and Mix smiled sheepishly.

“Hehe I was actually gonna ask if I could borrow one of your suits?”

“Of course!”, Luke answered and it was him who was grinning this time, knowing he got what he wanted without having to ask. “I’ll give you a couple of suits to keep so you can wash and rotate them for the days you work”.

“Yes! Thank you so much, brother. Love you”, Mix said, shooting finger hearts in Luke’s direction with his garlic sauce covered fingers.

 

Mix found himself standing in front of ElectroNet the next Friday morning. He hesitated to step inside the revolving door but the freezing air outside forced him to rush into the building as soon as possible. He looked around the huge lobby where everyone seemed to be walking around in a hurried manner and finally found the information desk that seemed like it would be useful for him. He greeted the lady behind the counter and asked her where he could get to the CFO’s office. The lady frowned at him with a look of disbelief.

“The CEO’s office, you say?” she asked.

“Ah yes, I’m the new intern”, Mix said informatively, though he wasn’t sure if anyone would have the knowledge of some little intern arriving in this big ass company.

The receptionist looked at him doubtfully before dialling a number and her eyes didn’t leave Mix throughout the phone call.

“Go to the 15th floor. The elevators are over there”, she said , after getting off the phone.

 

15 was the last amongst the series of numbers on the elevator wall and the young man stuffed in the corner invited strange stares to himself when he requested someone to press the button 15.

Mix was the only one left when the elevator finally reached this destination and as soon as he stepped out, a long and empty hallway greeted him. So he walked towards the only door that he saw at the end of the path. He straightened his shirt a bit before knocking on the door.

“Come in”, said a woman’s voice and Mix hesitated on whether he should go in or not. And when he finally did, he came into a scene of a young lady, perhaps slightly older than himself, sitting with her legs crossed on the CEO’s desk.

“Now who is this cute little one?”, the lady asked. Her lips were redder than blood and they curved up in a mischievous way as her eyes scanned Mix from head to toe.

“My new intern”, Earth said monotonically without looking up from the paper he was reading.

“Oh so this is your taste, huh Pirapat? No wonder you never kept my girls for more than a month”, she said, shrugging her shoulders. Earth looked up at the lady on his desk in disapproval and glanced once towards Mix before returning back to his papers.

“I didn’t need them”, he said sharply.

“Oh but what about him?”, she said, nodding towards Mix. Mix watched the two arguing in silence. He felt like running away already but his legs couldn’t move.

Earth collected the papers in front of him and set them to one side before turning to the woman who was still on his desk. “Namtarn, if you don’t have any more business to do here, I suggest you return to your office”, he said. Namtarn frowned, then Mix noticed her eyes lit up like she had another mischievous idea.

The lady smiled, leaning her face towards the man in the CEO chair and scratched ElectroNet CEO ’s chin like he was some little kitten and made tiny little cooing sounds.

“Awwn my little kitten is being a little too harsh on me. Now I’m sad”, she said, pouting sadly at Earth.

“NAMTARN!” Earth yelled. His voice roared inside of the spacious office making Mix flinch in response. Namtarn, however, didn’t seem to be a tiny bit afraid as she gracefully jumped off the desk and made her way towards the exit.

She stopped next to Mix, took his chin on one finger and turned his face towards her. “Hmm, not gonna lie. You do have a sweet face. I wonder if you taste sweet as well”, she said, her face turned towards Earth and a smirk plastered across her lips. When she was satisfied with provoking the CEO, Namtarn walked out of the room, her hips swaying lightly and heels clacking behind.

Earth pinched the bridge of his nose and sighed. Mix stole a glance at the CEO then stared at the floor that he was looking at since the moment Namtarn left. He wondered what Namtarn meant by if he tasted sweet. Then he wondered what Earth and Namtarn’s relationship could be. Could she have been his employee? a work partner? Or perhaps a lover?

Mix was cut off from his thoughts by the sound of Earth clearing his throat which sounded awfully close to his being. He lifted his head up to meet CEO Earth’s face only a few inches away from his. He must have been so immersed in his thoughts that he didn’t notice Earth coming towards him.

“Was it a good dream?”, he asked and Mix looked at him in confusion.

“I’m sorry?”

“Well you seemed like you were too consumed in your little day dream after seeing MD Namtarn. So, was it a good dream?”, he asked, his lips stretched into a noticeable smirk just like the one Namtarn had a while ago.

“Oh umm no sir. I mean, no I wasn’t daydreaming about the managing director. I was- umm I was just-“

“Perhaps you were dreaming about me then?”, Earth said, his lips curving into an even wider grin.

Earth laughed at the young man who was too stunned by his little action and tapped him on the shoulder before walking towards the meeting table in the middle of the room.

“Don’t sweat too much. I was just messing with you. Now come take a seat”, he said nodding towards a seat to his right and Mix obediently agreed. “You’re very well dressed”, Earth said and Mix smiled, believing he had made a good first impression. “But I don’t think they’re your clothes?”, the CEO continued, making that smile fall off Mix’s face.

“Oh umm yes. I borrowed them from my- brother”, Mix said, fidgeting his fingers.

“I see. Well, you don’t really need to dress so formally. Next time you can just come to work in your casual clothes”.

Mix frowned at the CEO’s words and mentally rolled his eyes in disappointment for his wasted effort of making a perfect tie for 30 mins. “Oh ok- umm sir.”

“And no need to be so polite with me. Just call me Earth”.

“Oh ok umm Earth, sir”.

Earth chuckled while slightly shaking his head and returning to his desk. Mix stopped speaking anymore words to avoid more stuttering mistakes and drowned himself in the pile of documents his boss gave him to read.

Chapter Text

“How’s internship going?”, Khao asked, as he pulled out a chair and settled down his bags. The two friends finally found some time to sit down for a nice cup of coffee before another wave of assignments approached.

“Internship is fine. Nothing more than a few paperworks and helping out with printing and other small tasks. What’s really killing me is the thesis”, Mix answered and let out a long sigh. Even now, he had his laptop opened to read some papers while sipping on his Americano.

“Tough work, eh? At least your handsome boss is good to look at”. Khao leaned towards the table, his hands prompting up his face and lips curled into an annoying smirk.

Mix gave him a deadly glare. He’s not sure if the handsome face is nice to see but he found himself being awfully close to that face very often recently.

Once, he didn’t notice Earth leaning over his shoulder while he was working on the papers and their noses came close to touching when Mix turned his head around.

Another time was when Mix forgot his jacket, suffering the extreme coldness of the AC in the CEO office. Earth came over to his seat to personally put his coat over Mix.

He wondered if Earth does that for all of his interns but then he remembered Namtarn saying the ones she sent didn’t last long. Why wouldn’t they want to stay by this extremely kind boss’s side?

“Umm, earth to Mix! Are you listening?”, Khao snapped his fingers in front of his face and Mix was cut off from this train of thoughts. “Dont tell me you were thinking about your boss”.

“Sorry. What? No! I mean no, what- what were you saying just now?”

“Yeah I know he’s handsome but pay me some attention too, alright? So as I was saying, Pond and Phu are planning for a beach trip after the exams. We can invite Ciize and Jan from your business class too. So you in?”, Khao asked.

Mix definitely loved beach trips and a trip after the finals is necessary. Yes, a necessity. They were barely half way through their exam period and both boys were already dressed in their best dark circles, frowns and sighs.

“Oh and you can also bring Luke if you want.”

“How about me?”, a voice asked and the two friends turned to the owner of the voice. “Can I also be invited?”

“Earth!”, Mix exclaimed and Khao was staring, or perhaps even drooling, wide eyes at the tall CEO in his casual sweatshirt and tight jeans.

“Yes, sir- umm of course you are also invited”, Khao replied rapidly once he regained his conscious. Earth smirked and turned to Mix.

“Umm, Earth what are you doing here?”, Mix asked.

“To pick you up”

Khao’s narrow eyes widen even further. “Your boss picks you up?”, he whispered to Mix as if Earth wasn’t standing just a few feet away.

“What for?”, Mix asked his boss, ignoring his best friend.

“Work. I need do some urgent paper work and I need you to double check that for me.”

“Sure. No. Wait, how do you even know I’m here?”

“Umm you told me?”

Khao nudged his best friend on the sides as whispered, not so softly. “You have to report your daily activities to your boss?”

“I’m pretty sure I didn’t”, Mix said, still ignoring Khao.

Earth raised both hands. His grin dissolved and his face turned serious. “Alright. I happened to just see you when I was coming out to grab a coffee. And I also happen to be needing a hand with work. So will you help me?”, he said and when Mix didn’t say anything, he continued. “I’ll tell you what. You help me today and I’ll arrange your beach trip for that day. All expenses on me. How about that?”

“Mix! Say yes, you idiot.” Khao slapped his best friend’s shoulder.

Mix sat dumbfounded for awhile before nodding and standing up to follow his boss who appeared out of nowhere and interrupted his coffee date. He threw his bags and laptops on the back seat and sat down in the passenger seat, as he always does.

The drive started in silence until Earth spoke. “So you like beaches?”

Mix didn’t have to give a verbal response. It was evident in his sparkly eyes and his head nodding repeatedly while those plump lips sipped on the Americano. Another thing he loved.

Earth smiled when he took a glance at the young boy then turned his gaze back on the road.

 

Days passed and so have the exams. Khao and Mix happily marched towards the door as soon as he heard a familiar car honking. He threw his luggages into the trunk and got onto the blue truck.

“Morning, boys. Ready to hit the beach?”, Luke asked, looking over his sunglasses. He was dressed in a pink Hawaii shirt and cargo shorts and it made Mix want to laugh but he suppressed it with a small smile.

“Ready as I’ll ever be”, Mix replied climbing into the back seat with his friend.

Luke threw two more Hawaii shirts to the friends at the back. “What’s with the long sleeves when we’re going to a beach. Here. Wear these.”

“Umm no thanks. I hate the sunlight touching my skin. Also, I don’t like flowery shirts”, Mix protested.

Khao was already putting on the shirt over his white tee and pleaded his best friend to wear them too just so they can get a nice beach selfie later. Mix eventually agreed and took out the blue Hawaii shirt from the bag.

 

When they reached the beach, Earth still hasn’t arrived but the hotel was already arranged. There were 7 people in Mix’s friend group including Luke and the receptionist informed that 4 rooms were booked. Assuming the boss had reserved a separate room for himself, the friends argued who would get a whole room to themselves.

“Is everything alright?”, a familiar voice asked and Mix turned around to see his boss in round neck cotton shirt and a pair of cargo shorts. It was a bit weird to see his boss in casual clothings when all he had seen him was in business suits or business ‘casual’ fashion.

But the look on his boss’s face seemed he was even more disapproving of Mix’s fashion taste. “Didn’t know you’d be a flowery kind of man”, Earth whispered, standing next to Mix.

Mix looked confused for a moment before looking down on the shirt he was wearing. “Oh this? Nah this was my brother and best friend’s idea. They wanted to take a ‘beachy’ selife”, Mix replied and slightly rolled his eyes.

Janhae and Ciize were still arguing with Khao, Pond and Phuwin while the rest of them stood and watch. Finally Earth managed to ask, “Umm is there anything wrong with the rooms?”

The friends didn’t notice the boss arrival as they were busy arguing over each other. “Oh no nothing sir”, Janhae said bashfully, pushing her hair to the back of her ears. And this earned her a slap on the back from Phuwin.

“Yeah nothing. They were just arguing over who gets the extra bedroom”, Luke answered Mix’s boss.

“Extra bedroom?”

“Umm yes. You booked us 4 twin bedrooms, didn’t you?”, Mix turned to Earth and asked. “Since there are 7 of us, someone is gonna get to use a whole room for themselves”.

Earth looked over to Mix’s friends and to themselves and pointed out, “But there are 8 of us here. I’m pretty sure I didn’t make a mistake”, he said.

“What?”, Mix, Khao and Janhae exclaimed in a higher than normal pitched voice.

“Yeah, 8 of us, 4 bedroom. Oh and Mix, you’ll be sleeping with me”.

“What?!” This time it was Luke who was surprised. Though he tried to control himself, anger was written all over his face.

Earth paid a second worth of attention to the furious man before turning back to Mix. “Sorry, Mix. But I need your help with these three documents and it has to be done by tonight. Just three docs, promise. I won’t let you work more on your holiday”, the boss pleaded Mix found himself unable to refuse.

He nodded in reply. Mix’s friends and Luke watched him silently as he walked behind the CEO and followed him into their shared room.

 

It was clear that the documents were Earth’s reason to get Mix to sleep in the same room with him. Because after the boss and his employee went into their room for the said work, it took them only 30 mins before they emerged back from the room, ready to join the rest.

Mix took a seat on the sunbed with his book, coconut and sunglasses.

“You’re not gonna play?”, Earth asked. He took the seat next to Mix, top stripped to sunbathe his beautiful skin.

“Umm no, I umm- I don’t really like being in water”, Mix replied. He was really glad then for his sunglasses.

“Mix, come on. Let’s play”, Khao called. He ran towards them followed by Luke and they both tried their best to get Mix into the water. When Mix didn’t move an inch, Luke marched towards him, lifted him up and lifted him up bridal style.

“Luke, no! Put me down!”, Mix screamed. He flapped like a dying fish in Luke’s arm, trying to wriggle out of his embrace.

“Luke”, Earth called, stopping Luke with a hand on his shoulder. His voice was low, eyes dark, making everyone turn to the trio.

Everyone was silent before Mix softly patted Earth’s hand on Luke’s shoulder and smiled. “It’s alright. They’re just teasing me. I’m used to it”.

“First one to the beach wins”, Khao yelled out of nowhere and Mix jumped off Luke’s embrace to race his friends to the water. Luke half jogged to the shore and Earth walked behind to follow them.

The group spent the whole afternoon playing in the water until everyone was exhaustedly floating on their respective swim tires, letting the waves slowly carry them to the shore.

Luke took a seat besides Earth who was lounging on the sunbed. “Don’t even try. You and him. You’re not-”, he paused then said, “meant to be”.

“And you’re the one who’s been meeting Gun?”, Earth asked him. He either didn’t hear or pretended not to hear what Luke had said.

“So he’s your omega? Is that why you’re coming after what’s mine? Because I’ve been sleeping with Gun?”

“With all due respect, “Mr Luke”, I dont think Mix belongs to anyone. And no, Gun is my family but he’s not ‘my’ omega”, Earth stressed each word he said.

Luke threw his hands behind his head and leaned back on the sunbed. “Mix may not belong to anyone yet, but he definitely belonged to somewhere you don’t”.

“And where could that be?”

“Look”, Luke nodded towards Mix and his friends who had just came out of the water. Mix may have had a little too much fun because he didn’t seem to notice his swim shorts being pulled slightly lower than his waist by the waves.

He didn’t but Earth did. So did Luke. And their unnaturally sharp eye sight also saw the small tattoo mark just above Mix’s left pelvic bone.

Two Ss back to back with a dagger in between. A scared silver.