"Hello," he softly croons, sings really, his little word promising something far better than cramped up office hours to the glowing omega, his fingertips itching to hold onto the soft cheeks, and the thin neck, and to find a home so permanent he wouldn't ever need to walk out of it. "Is the day treating you good?"
"It is, sir." Jongin rolls his eyes, his fingers racing against time to map out coherent sentences. He is busy, a heavy load of presentation is put onto his already overburdened shoulders, and having alpha Baekhyun around him doesn't really help the situation. He prints a new page, piling it up with others. "I am busy, if you will be kind enough to leave me."
"I was wondering maybe you'd be kind enough to come out with me this evening, for a warm cup of hot chocolate." He grins, his calloused but thin fingers find a comforting moment in the messing of his own mullet. He leans against the wall, well proportioned arms crossed over a broad chest, his eyes finding barely visible, barely obvious, imperfections on Jongin's beautiful, otherwise, unblemished skin. It's a nice comfort, to know his love interest is just as burdened with tiny imperfections as he himself is. Makes them two all the more similar.
Jongin turns to him, and his eyes first fall out of the window, a heavy blanket of cold covers the entirety of their lonely city in a cool cocoon of nature. The trees seem lonely, the people lonelier, and the office crowd the most miserable. Even so, Jongin finds both beauty and a feeling of being lost in the constantly dropping temperature in the season. He forces his eyes back on the alpha, and finds his gaze fixed almost right away on his mullet.
Baekhyun had come into the office a week ago, with the mullet, and everyone had just stared— he, too. The scandal of having a mullet was actually so dramatic, that ever so loyal a crowd of workers here decided to do a poll of sorts during the break to see if most people liked the new hairstyle, or not.
Jongin said he did.
He does .
Baekhyun grins at him, as if he understands everything that's going inside the omega's mind; whether he is right or wrong, none of them knows. Jongin gives him a careful look, one searching for stories that need not to be said, ones that need to be found on one's own, to own the heart that promises a love so gentle. "Thought of my proposal, yet?"
He blushes despite himself, and looks away. "Stop badgering me."
"I am just trying to be a nice alpha— what wrong is there if I propose you to become my sugar baby in the process? Maybe you'll find something nice in my nature." He leans a little over the young omega, his eyes finding the rhythm of Jongin's heartbeats as heat takes place on his own handsome face. "More than anything else, you know exactly why I want you with me."
"More so, there's no way you don't have an ulterior motive." His tone, despite the affected blush on his soft cheeks, is clipped, telling Baekhyun of heartbreaks that he did not witness.
"Motive," he repeats, and leans back.
He has one.
However, Jongin mentioning it in such a tone, in such a situation, only makes the motive sound far worse than it actually is, or at least far worse than Baekhyun imagines it to be. It is not the case that Baekhyun does not feel for him, nor is the case that he is using the omega's gentle upbringing to solve a situation he finds unsolvable otherwise. It is just that he adores the young omega, finds a desire, hope, in his chest every time Jongin is reminded to him through the breaths he takes. It is the desperation to have him as his own quicker that has led to some unplanned flirtations from his side. Plus, the never-ending pressure from his family.
How, will he ever break it to Jongin, he knows not.
Jongin stands up all of a sudden, a thick stack of paper carefully bundled in his hands. "Excuse me, sir. I am a little busy."
Baekhyun allows him an exit, and presses a hand, deliberately, over the omega's thin wrist. "I will wait for you in the parking lot, Jongin. However long it takes." Jongin takes his hand back, his head ducked low, and frame trembling with the same emotions that steady Baekhyun on his feet. "Go on now, Jongin."
Baekhyun has loved him. He has loved him longer than he can give a sensible explanation, how a man feels so much for the same person he knew not before, but every tilt of Jongin's mouth, every shade of shyness in his eyes, and the delicate color of blush on his cheeks, has only provoked something primal within himself; something so natural that it needs reasoning of no nature to describe, and thus prove, its importance. He has spent days thinking of him, nights in painful tears that often reminded him of everything he desires, and everything that he has not. Jongin makes him feel too much, too breathless, too full of breath, and yet… Baekhyun does not know if he feels the same.
It is in happiness that he feels sadness that Jongin may not be experiencing the same kind of grief that he often does.
In this already tumultuous mess of his emotions, he once haphazardly, in a reckless moment, proposed to Jongin to accept him as his sugar daddy. Things will be easier , he promised, desperate as he was, eyeing the worn down coat Jongin had on his slim frame, I promise to take care of you in any manner that you want. Just… stay with me, and I will do whatever you tell me to do. Was that an actual proposal? Perhaps, there were parts in those words that are meant to be an extension to something far more serious. That was hinted at two months ago.
Jongin has answered nothing.
He is still waiting, still counting the hours that would bring a moment where he finally will be the luckiest son of a bitch.
"There are rumours that there will be downsizing in the sales department," Jongin explains his worries, sitting next to him, adjusting himself on the comfortable seat, and then closes the car door after him. "Is it true, sir?"
He starts the engine. "Yes, it's unfortunately happening." He looks over at the worried omega, and finds beauty even in the movement where Jongin bites onto his own bottom lip, worrying that it later leaves it plumper, a shade redder, softer, and even more enticing. Baekhyun swallows. "But you don't need to worry." He stares at his mouth, desires it over his own. "I have got your back." He looks up, finds the omega's eyes fixed into his own, searing, questioning, doubting, but, nonetheless, trusting.
Jongin smiles, but he seems worried regardless.
By the time they walk into a little cafe, warm looking both inside and outside, promising a little comfort in the chilling season, it has started snowing, Jongin's hair, uncovered as it was for a while, has a few snowflakes on it. Baekhyun takes pains in removing them, rubs a hand over the soft hair to make sure the omega does not fall sick. Winter promises an easy path to cold, Baekhyun would not have his love interest falling sick when they live so far from each other, when Jongin lives with none but himself, when he is nothing but a stubborn little prick. He smoothes the omega's hair, his hand finding home even in the softness of it, and then finding it in his brightly lit eyes.
There's something about Jongin's eyes that he cannot understand, cannot explain. Sure, there's the easiest word— beautiful, for a starter, but for some reason it does not do any justice to the eyes Jongin owns. Baekhyun does not know how to explain it, but how do you call someone's eyes when they seem so vulnerable a second, then challenging the next; when they seem soft so much, and then pained the next. How do you find any possible justice within the words of English to define the curves of such being's eyes.
"Hot Chocolate for two," the waitress announces, carefully placing the delicate ceramic on the table. She leaves. Jongin takes a mug between his little hands, his beautiful fingers wrap the ceramic in a nice hold, begging for a little warmth, unsaid in its nature.
"Thank you for bringing me here, sir."
"Baekhyun hyung," Jongin corrects himself.
"It's not everyday you say yes." He leans against the wooden chair, feet balancing his weight as he pushes it a little back, eyes fixed upon Jongin. His gaze must be heavier, more scorching, than he intended it to, for Jongin turns restless under the weight of it, redder, sweeter, more willing, truer to the emotions shared between them. He does not soften his gaze, hopes to send messages he is unable to otherwise.
"The sales, this year," Jongin begins, his cheeks red as he fumbles with his words, as if unsure where he's supposed to take this conversation, where to begin, where to end. Baekhyun smiles at him, a tiny little thing that even he himself does not notice. "The sales were good," he says, his breathing faster, as if it's stuck somewhere in his throat, the feelings overwhelming enough to leave him a bit disoriented. "I don't understand the need for downsizing."
Baekhyun shrugs. "It's BoD's decision. I am unsure about the reasons myself." He brings his chair closer to the table, rests his arms over the wooden furniture. "You really don't need to worry, Jongin. The department needs you."
Jongin swallows. "I am scared," he says, his voice tiny, "all I do is handle a couple of papers, and receive calls for the Boss. It will be easy to remove me."
"If need be, it will be," Baekhyun agrees, Jongin's face falls, "but I don't think the department can work without you. You handle the most paperwork, even rivaling Junmyeon's normal job. He does not want to get rid of you in any way. Trust me."
Junmyeon leads the sales department, his father is a member of the Board of Directors, his words are almost the laws. Accomplished, and well-mannered, he is not only admirable, but also very charming, thanks to his genteel nature and handsome visage. So, so… of course, he is interested in Jongin as well, almost as much as Baekhyun himself. Even if Jongin did the utmost puny job at the company, Junnyeon would have kept him. Right now, he is handling much more than most in the department. He has become a need.
He knows not.
Who will tell him?
"Don't worry. Trust me."
They decide to take a walk onto the colder paths, into the shivering, but heavy, crowd of people. Jongin walks beside him, his head ducked low, and his hands pushed into the pockets of his fluffy coat. Despite the obvious hunch of his back, he looks taller than Baekhyun, the omega's shoulders almost as broad as his own… and despite that, Baekhyun feels an almost humbling approval from the omega to make him feel confined within his heavy arms. "Why do you hunch so much," he asks out of curiosity, when a startling need to change the topic comes into his mind, for he— feels too much for this omega, so much that it's impossible to feel that and to not do anything under the heavy obscure guidance of it.
"It's a habit," he does not try to straighten up his back, and when he speaks next, there's a smile in his words, "and because I respect shorter people."
"Ooh, is that so," he amuses him, feeling overwhelmed, red on his own cheeks, for despite all the stretched flirting between them, this is what makes their… relationship (or whatever that it is) all the more precious. Jongin giggles a little, as if just as overwhelmed. "Are you absolutely sure it's not because you just want to feel tinier?"
"No," Jongin denies, but there's a lie in his breath.
"Perhaps you did not want to grow this tall."
"That's not it, hyung."
"Doesn't matter. All your height goes in your legs anyway. When you sit, you look smol ."
"Oh my god," Jongin gasps, "you do not use Urban Dictionary."
"How will you find that out, huh, Jongin?"
"I don't understand," Jongin begins, once they're seated in the car, his eyes fixed ahead, overlooking the night sky. Baekhyun does not start the car, not yet— he thinks they will have to talk a bit into what's really potentially life-changing. "Why do you want me as your sugar baby?"
"I am rich," he begins, "I can help you financially, because I am pretty sure the pay is not really the most brilliant in the department. But— more so… more so, because I like you, Jongin." He swallows into the stretched silence, unsure if he's doing the right thing. It is true some time he will need to bring the heavier deal as well, but how he's supposed to do that is still unclear. But, just as important to talk over. "I have liked you for so long, I don't even remember when I first felt for you."
"Oh," Jongin says, and blushes. There's a tremble in his fingers, in his frame, that does not belong to the cold in the temperature. It's owned by Baekhyun himself, however impossible that it seems sometimes. He owns that. He deserves that.
He swallows, "the whole thing is just to make sure I am taking care of you, because— however modern I feel, there's this primal part in me that wants to take care of the one who means so much to me. You. I can see no other way to do that, especially when your own family lives in the village. Not one soul to look after you." He holds onto the steering wheel, wanting to say so much but not knowing where to begin is really an overwhelming, almost a mental breakdown encouraging, feeling, "when you fell sick last week, and there was no one to look after you, it just… scared me, and I…"
Jongin holds onto his hand, smoothes out the wrinkles that gathered there, and rubs a thumb over the skin. "You did seem pretty worried when you came over."
"I was," he says, pathetically, "I was."
"I have no doubts about that."
"Jongin, I—" he huffs, and gives a little laugh, unsure of what to feel more. He wants to cry, perhaps laugh, perhaps fall onto his knees to beg for some heavy attention… he does not know anything anymore. He is feeling so much.
"Yeah, okay," Jongin shrugs, and takes his hand back, "I have been thinking about this offer for a while now," he seems a bit unsure now, "the student loan, and the apartment bills, they're piling up." He sounds embarrassed, "I— I accept."
"Are you sure?"
"I am." He nods his head, avoids looking into his eyes.
"Oh," he laughs a little, flustered, biting onto his upper lip, unsure, "oh, that's— I really did not expect it to happen today." Jongin shrugs, and does not speak anymore. Red crawls up Baekhyun's cheeks, tears gather in his eyes, when he thinks of the most important thing to be said. How would Jongin react then, he knows not at all. "Jongin, there's something more."
"What is there, hyung?" He seems curious.
Baekhyun swallows. "There's actually another reason I have chosen you," he shakes his head, "not really another reason, but— something that is just as important to be known."
"I am curious," he says, though he smiles no more.
"I have been looking for you longer than my family has demanded of this from me," he makes himself clear, makes sure the omega knows and understands that his intentions are as pure as man in love has, "my family— they demand an heir from me," he says it at last, "another reason that I pursued you more, but that is not the central idea!" He turns to him, "I have loved you longer than anything I can remember, Jongin. This is just a hope that you and I will end up happy together, and thus— have a family together. One of our own."
"Oh," Jongin says, "oh."
"Jongin, listen, this is not the only reason I have asked you out. Or the reason at all. I have seeked you, because I find my love in you. This is just…"
"I understand, hyung," Jongin says softly, "you are a rich man, you have a company to run, having an heir is only a part of it." He shrugs, unsure. He stares ahead at the twinkling fairy lights, "it's actually— wow. But, I, uh…"
He swallows, "Jongin."
"I need you to drive me home. I have a lot to think about."
"Please," he says, without looking at him, "hyung."
When they reach the omega's apartment, Jongin takes his time in getting off. He sits still and unsure, as if he knows not which emotion he needs to pursue first. Sure, the proposal had been the most heartwarming two months ago, but now having known of a familial demand puts it all in a different perspective. He wonders now, despite the heavy breathing the alpha takes, despite the tremble in his frame, if Baekhyun is just as sincere as he seems all the time. It is true that the alpha's eyes speak the brightest of promises, but Jongin finds himself hesitating when he thinks of the previous heartbreaks he had to endure, simply because he had listened to his own heart.
"I will see you tomorrow, hyung."
"Oh, Jongin," Baekhyun says, feeling an ache within.
Jongin turns to him, before he leaves, holds onto the handle as if wanting some resemblance of hearty support that he is unwilling, unsure, to accept from the alpha himself, accept is as his own. The owner of it. "Pick me up tomorrow, will you?"