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Cashmere Craving

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When Yixing steps off the plane, into his new apartment, into the skyscraper otherwise known as SM Inc. or his new job, he feels the same sense of uncertainty tug at him every time.

Did I make the right decision by moving back to Seoul?

There isn't much left for him in Changsha, China, with his parents gone, and though he supposes he could've tried Beijing, Seoul is familiar. He spent three years attending college here. He had a life and friends here.

So each time the uncertainty twists his stomach, familiarity settles over it like a warm blanket, a reminder that at least for the moment, this is the best choice.

”Whatever you choose to do… is right,” his mother had told him, time and time again. ”You are so good, and you are going to make so many people happy with your goodness.

Though he’s still not sure about SM Inc., a giant corporation full of probably evil corporate bozos that he swore off from the moment his mother mentioned he might want to consider exactly what it is he wants to do with his life, eleven years ago.

Yixing wanted to dance. Wants. He wants to dance. Yixing wants to open his own dance studio and teach children with the same love and care he was taught by his own instructors in Changsha.

But he needs money to do that. He has the dance degree, he has the business degree, but not the financial stability. SM can provide that. They need someone to run their gym, because that’s a thing for this building; they have a gym and spa and coffee bar and an entire damn food court, too.

SM is an advertisement agency, which didn’t seem like enough for the level of Giant Corporation it is, but according to his friend Tianxing, who got Yixing the job in the first place, SM controls at least 75% of the advertisement in Seoul and surrounding cities. Hence the monstrous skyscraper jutting from the street in the middle of downtown and the sickeningly high pay. They’re offering him tenfold what he would’ve made literally anywhere else; it would’ve have been downright ridiculous of him to reject the offer, even if all he really knows about the place is what Tianxing told him. Yixing didn’t even look it up, blindly accepting the position (the money.)

He sighs as he glances around his new, tiny one bedroom apartment in Yangcheon.

And again, as he stares up at the scary SM skyscraper the next day.

He’ll live in a shoebox and work in a place where people don’t know the definition of clothes beyond a suit, because this is his ticket. He will live below his means, and save the extra money.

Maybe it’ll be enough to open his own dance studio one day.

~*~

Just walking into SM Inc. on his first day is somehow much more overwhelming than he expected.

Suits everywhere.

He tries not to glance down at his own attire. He went with business casual, black dress shoes, a black, fitted t-shirt tucked into black fitted jeans, and a navy blue blazer. He knows he literally has no reason to invest in a suit–he has a tank, sweats, and street shoes he plans to immediately change into stuffed in his gym bag–but it’s intimidating, sticking out like a sore thumb amongst all of the white collars. His dark hair falling too messily above his equally dark eyes. His average height makes him seem much smaller compared to these abnormally tall business people.

Steeling himself–get over it Zhang–he approaches the desk where a gangly looking kid sits, clicking around on a computer very unbusiness-like. Yixing can see the green glow of Solitaire on his face. Sitting right in the middle of the gigantic, circular lobby must get boring, and lonely.

“Hello,” Yixing greets.

The boy startles, flailing, and Yixing tries not to react. “Oh, hi! Hello. Um.” He clears his throat. How can I help you?”

Yixing smiles and doesn't fail to notice the way the kid’s face goes blank in some form of awe. “I’m Zhang Yixing. Today is my first day,” he responds. “I oversee the gym here now, but I’m not sure if I should check in with someone first, or just go up there and get started?”

“Oh!” The boy perks up. “I’ll call Kyungs-”

“I’m here.”

Yixing turns his head and observes the shorter man briskly approaching them from the direction of the elevator. His expression is blank, eyebrows set in a hard line that makes him look mean. Yixing’s a little put-off, admittedly. The kid behind the desk brightens like the damn sun, though. “Kyungsoo!” he greets enthusiastically.

Heads turn and Kyungsoo sighs. “Keep your voice down,” he murmurs, barely sparing a glance at the pup practically panting for his attention. Interesting, Yixing thinks. But also not his business. “I’m Do Kyungsoo, the Chief Operations Officer of the company,” the brood-man greets Yixing. “Zhang Yixing, right?”

“Yes.” They bow.

“Follow me.”

Okay. No pleasantries with this guy. Yixing turns to the kid and bows his head. “Thank you...” He doesn't know his name.

The boy stares blankly, expectantly, and Do Kyungsoo glances at the desk. He sighs, reaching over the boy and placing a nameplate within eyesight. Park Chanyeol. “Chanyeol, if you’re going to continue forgetting to introduce yourself, you should really leave this where people can actually see it.”

Dejected, Chanyeol straightens the nameplate with a sigh. “Yeah, I know. Sorry Soo.”

To Yixing’s surprise, Kyungsoo reaches over and squeezes the boy’s shoulder before moving toward the elevator. “Thank you, Chanyeol-ssi,” Yixing tells the suddenly much happier boy, and follows the other across the floor.

Yixing tries chatting up Kyungsoo as they make their way to the third floor, but Yixing thinks he’s probably lucky the gym is there and not the 27th because Kyungsoo barely spares him a glance and Yixing feels awkward.

The elevator doors slide open with a ding and Kyungsoo briskly walks out. This elevator faces the gym, so after crossing the broad hallway, they’re already there.

“I’ll be who you report to with any problems,” Kyungsoo says once he unlocks the door and hands over the key. “This is yours,” he adds. “Mr. Byun Sr. is an incredibly busy man so only go directly to him as an absolute last resort.”

Yixing just nods in understanding. He’s fine with that. His video interview with the CEO had been kind of terrifying, and Yixing’s not one to scare easily.

“The computer in your office needs to be replaced, so for now you’ll have to keep physical bookings of any appointments or classes you may run.”

Classes. Mr. Byun Sr. had mentioned the last gym manager held pilates classes for the women of the company. Yixing wouldn’t mind starting a yoga one open for everyone. “That’s fine. I prefer keeping a book, anyway.”

Kyungsoo nods. “I ordered a new one for you. It should be in your office.”

“Thank you, Kyungsoo-ssi.”

The other man’s lips form something that could be a smile if Yixing squints hard enough and he nods again. “Of course. I also left my information in your office, for when you need me.” Kyungsoo seems to think for a moment. “I don't know how well you know the building but the coffee shop is right down the hall from here.” He actually smiles this time! “Which makes you the luckiest person here.”

Yixing chuckles. “Yes, lucky me. I can't live without my coffee fix.”

Kyungsoo just nods. Again. But there’s still an amused quirk to his lips. “That should be everything for now. You’ve been given a virtual tour of the gym and you have your keys now, so just call me if you have any questions.”

“Thank you, Kyungsoo-ssi.”

The other man bows and walks back to the elevator.

Yixing turns on the house lights and steps into his gym. It’s spacious. Probably takes up most of the 3rd floor when you include his office, the small “dance studio,” the locker rooms and showers.

He runs his hands over the equipment on his way to his office and frowns. A gym. A personal trainer. A what? Yoga instructor? He sighs and pushes his unease aside.

He should get settled in.

After a few minutes of familiarizing himself with the space--a reasonably-sized room with a large desk, three chairs, and a black couch along the wall, along with shelves on the opposite wall for Yixing’s things--Yixing stores Kyungsoo’s cell phone and office numbers in his phone, and slips the paper with his actual office information into his desk for when he inevitably needs it.

He’s filling out the first few pages of his gym book when someone knocks on the door. Yixing looks up, startled, and smiles out of courtesy. “Hello!”

The man in the doorway is a skyscraper much in the way the building they’re in is, and younger than Yixing by the looks of it. His dark, thick eyebrows that make him look broodier than he should. “Hi,” the man bows with a smirk. “I heard our new gym coach was here. Wanted to introduce myself.”

Yixing chuckles. “Word travels fast. I haven't been here that long.” But nonetheless, his smile turns more genuine. “You come here often?”

It’s not until the stranger’s smirk widens that Yixing realizes how truly terrible of a pickup line that sounded. “I might try harder now,” the tall man says.

With an amused huff, Yixing tilts his head in acknowledgment. “I’m Zhang Yixing.”

“Oh Sehun.”

They bow their heads, gazes locked.

Yixing fleetingly wonders what the policy is on employees hooking up because Sehun is easily the most perfectly proportioned human being he’s ever seen. His eyes scope the length of the man’s body, and then he internally berates himself. He can’t let his libido get in the way of his work. He needs this money.

He clears his throat. “Do you want to sign up for a class, Oh Sehun-ssi?” Not that there are sign-ups. Or a class for that matter, yet.

“Just Sehun,” the other man corrects smoothly. “I’m actually looking for a personal trainer.”

Yixing does his absolute best not to read into it. “Well,” he says. “I’m actually looking for clients.”

Sehun smiles. “Perfect.”

~*~

> lu han: find anyone 2 replace me yet??? o_O
> yixing: An attractive man DID flirt with me today. My first day. I must be lucky.
> lu han: wtf xing ur supposed to say “You’re irreplaceable, Lu Han. No one could ever be as good of a fuck-buddy as you, Lu Han.” !!!!!!!
> yixing: How about “You’re an idiot, Lu Han.” ? That works.
> lu han: so cold already!! don’t forget me, xingxing!
> lu han: or my dick
> yixing: Which dick was this again?
> lu han: MEANIE
> yixing: :)

~*~

As first (and second) weeks go, Yixing’s is seamless. He falls into the unpredictable flow of a gym in a corporate building surprisingly easily. He meets a lot of people and remembers most of their names. There’s Minseok, head of accounting, Irene, assistant head of accounting, Yoona, Minho, Yesung, Amber, and so on. Chanyeol-the-puppy stops by, and even Kyungsoo books appointments for personal training, somehow fitting Yixing into his clearly packed schedule.

Yixing learns things. Like how Minseok and Sehun (unlikely friends, he can’t help but think) always reward themselves with sweet, sugary coffee after the gym, even if they’ve only spent about ten minutes there (Sehun), and how Kyungsoo sleeps in his office more than his own home. How all of these people that have come to see him or just come to the gym period, see it almost as a vacation, actually excited to put their bodies to active use after sitting around in an office or cubicle for a week straight, which is refreshing.

The only slice of hell Yixing really experiences, he thinks, is Oh Sehun.

Oh Sehun stops by the gym every single day.

Oh Sehun books personal training appointments.

Oh Sehun talks about joining one of his yoga classes.

Oh Sehun is physically flawless to the point that Zhang Yixing has left work three times in two weeks’ time with a half-hard dick and no one to take care of it but his own pretty hand.

Yixing considers finding someone multiple times, he even goes so far as to research the best clubs in the area for him to scope out, but always shuts his laptop with a sigh of frustration. He’s never been one for the club scene, not really at least. Not when he knows no one and is going alone.

Not without Luhan, his brain helpfully supplies. And when he had Luhan, he didn’t need to pick anyone up. Luhan was his best friend and best fuck all wrapped up into one.

And truthfully, he does like the arrangement of friends with benefits most of all. It’s easier, less work than trying to find someone new every time you need a good fuck, and he finds himself missing Luhan more and more. They had been “fuck-buddies”–as Luhan always called it–on and off for years. How is Yixing supposed to find that here?

His thoughts always lead him right back to Oh fucking Sehun.

It’s not only sexual tension when they’re in the gym together (though there is a lot of it, so much it’s stifling sometimes); they chat a little about music and laugh when Sehun shares a story of some ridiculous co-worker upstairs in social media marketing. Sehun is dry and mostly monotone when he is obviously not into the workout Yixing is making him do, but the way he laughs opens up his expression and makes him much more appealing, his interest in music and even dance makes him much more interesting and Yixing thinks they can be friends if they can just get past the smothering sexual tension between them. Or at the very least, if Sehun would just stop doing everything in his power to show off his ass at every given chance.

Yixing’s job would be much easier without the sight of tight sweatpants stretched around Sehun’s perfect ass every fucking day.

“Hyung, come spot me.”

Yixing’s eyes, very unprofessionally, trail up Sehun’s body where he’s laid out on the bench press and for once isn't caught–Sehun’s sight is sharp–but Sehun is focusing on wrapping his large hands around the barbell at the perfect position and Yixing’s eyes get their fill before he’s done.

Fleetingly, he supposes they are sort of friends, or that at least Sehun thinks so, because he started calling Yixing ‘hyung’ a few days ago.

Maybe this could be the arrangement Yixing needs.

He stands behind Sehun’s head and looks down. “Go on,” he says. “When you’re ready. I’ve got you.”

Sehun smirks up at him, then lifts the bar and gets to work.

He struggles for a moment, lifting a few pounds more than he’s used to, but after a few pumps he has the hang of it, Yixing’s soft encouragements seeming to help him along.

When the required number has passed, Yixing helps Sehun place the bar back on its holder, and fetches a bottle of water for him.

“So, are you going to join my yoga class, Sehunnie?” he asks. He’s finally getting the details worked out, and the yoga mats he ordered with his company budget should be here tomorrow, if they’re on time.

Sehun laughs a little, taking an amused swig of his drink. “I don’t know, Yixing hyung, I know nothing about yoga.”

Yixing scoffs playfully. “It’s not like it’s going to be a real class, you know, or even advanced. You don't have to know anything.”

“I don't know, hyung…” Sehun says again, and then a smirk slowly overtakes his face. Yixing realizes he misinterpreted the glint in the other man’s eye before. “I think I need a private lesson.”

Yixing is almost positive he can feel his own pupils dilate at the thought. “I can't exactly give a private lesson here, considering this is a public gym.”

“So your place, then?”

“I guess I could fit you into my schedule,” Yixing breathes. Finally.

Sehun’s shoulder bounces attractively with silent laughter. “Do you give a lot of private lessons, hyung?”

With a finger on his chin, Yixing pretends to ponder. “Not since coming to Korea.” He sighs longsufferingly but smirks nonetheless.

Sehun stands then, steps into Yixing’s personal space. A finger trails along Yixing’s collarbone and he revels in it. “Are you lonely, hyung?”

“Mm… is that what the kids are calling it these days?”

Yixing steps away--they’re at work--and Sehun laughs as if Yixing just told the joke of the century, lets his fingers graze Yixing’s ass as he moves across the floor. “When should we have our lesson?”

Yixing bites his lip and turns his head to look back at Sehun. “Tonight? I get off in a couple of hours.”

And then Sehun groans. “I have been trying to get private lessons from you since you got here and you cave today? Hyung, this won't do.”

Yixing snorts. “I’m guessing you can't tonight, then?”

“Tomorrow. Please say you’re free tomorrow.”

Yixing sighs theatrically. “I’ll have to check my schedule, Sehunnie.”

Sehun bounds forward and pinches Yixing’s ass in retaliation.

“Okay, okay!” Yixing laughs. “I’m off tomorrow. I’ll text you my addr-”

“Yixing?” A new voice calls from the gym entrance. Yixing squints in their direction curiously. That sounds oddly like… “Zhang Yixing?!”

“Jongdae?!”

“You two know each other?” Sehun asks, glancing between them as Jongdae rushes forward.

“Ahh! Yixing hyung! What the hell are you doing here, man?!”

Yixing is engulfed in a bear hug before he can fully process that it is, indeed, Jongdae, his college roommate whom he hasn't seen since they graduated, the best friend he had in Seoul that he had lost touch with unintentionally. “Jongdae~,” he sings as he hugs him back warmly. “It’s been so long!”

“Yah, look at you!” Jongdae pulls back and holds Yixing at arm’s length. “You aged!”

Yixing laughs. “That is what happens with time, I’m told.”

“Yeah, but I expected you to look 21 forever!” Jongdae grins. “Now you look at least 22.”

Laughing again, Yixing shoves him playfully and shakes his head. “26, just like you. Ahh, Jongdae, Jongdae, Jongdae. I’ve missed you!”

“I’ve missed you more! Yahhh!”

Another hug almost sends Yixing flying to the ground, so much so that Sehun actually grabs Yixing’s shoulder just in case. Sehun snorts and lets go. “Are you drunk, Jongdae hyung?”

Jongdae cackles. “Shut up, Sehunnie! I’m just excited. Junmyeonnie comes home tonight and now Yixing hyung is here! Today is a good day.”

“Wah,” Yixing gapes. “Junmyeonnie? The same from university that you were in love with? Does he work here, too?”

Yixing feels like he’s experiencing whiplash. Kim Jongdae, his university roommate of three years, seems to work in the same building as him. He knows Sehun. And now Kim Junmyeon from their Performance Theatre class is here, too?

“No, no!” Jongdae exclaims.

Sehun’s howling next to them. “You pined after Junmyeon hyung, didn’t you?”

“I mean- Can it, brat!” Jongdae whines. “Yes, the same Junmyeon. But he doesn't work here. He’s a lawyer. Sometimes SM hires him for various jobs but he mostly works with environmental things.”

“Ahh.” Yixing nods in understanding. “Wow. Does anyone else we went to school with work here?” He chuckles. “I feel so out of the loop.”

Sehun checks his watch then and interrupts just as Jongdae is saying no. “Well, I’ll leave you two to it, then. Baek wants me to pick up the food he ordered for tonight.” The last statement is clearly directed at Jongdae because Yixing has no idea who Baek is, or what Tonight is.

“Yes, please do that,” Jongdae laughs. “I’m already hungry.”

“Yeah, yeah, maknae to the rescue.” Sehun rolls his eyes but it’s fond, and his gaze lands on Yixing, intense. “See you soon.”

Yixing smiles sweetly. “Don’t forget your yoga mat, Sehun.”

Sehun smirks. “Wouldn't dream of it.” He licks his lips and Yixing tries not to track the movement. “Have fun catching up.”

And then he’s walking away.

“Wah Sehunnie’s doing yoga?!” Jongdae exclaims.

“He will be, indeed,” Yixing answers loud enough for Sehun to hear.

His guffaws echo across the gym from the direction of the locker rooms.

“Sehun’s so lazy. I can't believe you’ve convinced him to do yoga, hyung!” Jongdae laughs. He does that a lot. Yixing’s missed it.

Yixing just laughs along with him, feigning innocence. “Is he? He’s been pretty productive in our sessions here. He’s already toning up a bit more.”

Yixing would know. Sehun goes sleeveless on purpose and Yixing likes keeping an eye on his progress. The flex of the younger man’s muscles-

“Still blown away.” Jongdae grins, then slaps him on the shoulder. “I can't believe you’re here!”

“I can’t believe you’re here!” Yixing tilts his head toward his office, so that Jongdae will follow him. “What do you do here?”

“I’m Do Kyungsoo’s assistant!”

“How have I not seen you then?! I report directly to Kyungsoo for everything.”

Jongdae shrugs. “He has me overlook specific branches. Like accounting and social media marketing. He handles most of the new head of department hires. I don't even see the paperwork. Otherwise I might have known you were here sooner!”

“Ahh.” Yixing sits behind his desk and motions for Jongdae to take the chair.

“I was talking with him about booking appointments with our new personal trainer, and then he said your name and I flipped out!” Jongdae explains enthusiastically. “I had to come see for myself. What have you been doing since we graduated?!”

Yixing settles into his story of how he returned to his hometown, moved back in with his mother and started offering dance lessons to local kids. He picked up a job at a dance studio for the extra cash, and knew after working with all of the different styles and people that he wanted to have his own one day. To create a space for creative children to have an outlet, to learn more about their passions in a positive environment. Then after his mom died and he started job searching for something better, a friend pointed him toward the SM job opening and recommended him for the position. It’s not exactly what he had in mind, he explains, but it’s going to get him where he needs to be.

In turn, Jongdae tells Yixing about his struggle to find a job after he graduated. He had to move back in with his parents because he had no other choice but to be homeless. He worked at a coffeeshop to make ends meet and that’s how he reconnected with Junmyeon, who regularly visited the shop, unbeknownst to Jongdae.

“So are you together now?!” Yixing asks.

Jongdae beams. “For over two years now.”

“Congratulations! Ah, you liked him so much our junior year.”

“Yeah, yeah I did.”

Jongdae then explains that they became attached embarrassingly quickly, and it turned out Junmyeon was even richer than he had been in university (which was very rich, Yixing remembers). He sort of started taking care of Jongdae, once they got really close, and before Jongdae knew it, he was being interviewed for a job at SM because Junmyeon’s best friend is the CEO’s son. By the time Jongdae was settled into his new job and ready to move out of his parents’ house finally, Junmyeon asked him to move in and the rest is history.

“I’m so happy for you, Jongdae,” Yixing sincerely says. “You look good, too.” The same, really, but instead of copper “poodle” hair like in school, Jongdae’s hair is dark brown and short and cleanly kept. But his cheekbones are still sharper than knives and his mouth still curls up at the corners. Yixing feels so warm seeing his old friend again. Having something familiar in this unfamiliar building.

“Aw, I’m gonna blush!” Jongdae laughs. “I’m really proud of you, hyung. I know this isn't really what you wanna be doing, but I believe in you. I know you’re gonna make your dreams come true.”

Yixing scrunches his nose and laughs. “Now I’m going to blush.”

They laugh together and settle into a momentary, comfortable silence.

And then suddenly Jongdae whines, “Oh my god! Was yoga a euphemism for sex?!”

~*~

> sehun: hope you’re awake ‘cause i’m coming over now.
> sehun: just really craving some yoga, you know?

Yixing’s in the shower when Sehun texts him the next day, and has barely rushed to eat a protein bar when a knock sounds on the front door.

He swings it open with a smirk. “You know, it’s what? Three in the afternoon? Who sleeps in that late anymore?” He steps aside and let’s Sehun enter, Yixing’s eyes sweeping along his firm body in just a t-shirt and hip-hugging sweatpants. His gaze lingers on the generous bulge at Sehun’s crotch. He’s already half-hard. Yixing bites his lip.

“I usually do!” Sehun almost whines as he slips his shoes off and Yixing closes the door. “When I have the chance. Especially the morning after one of Baek hyung and Junmyeon hyung’s parties.” Suddenly Yixing is being caged against the door by long arms and Sehun’s breath is on his face. “But I can't stop thinking about you and your hot fucking dancer body on top of me.”

Yixing puts on an innocent smile, suddenly feeling like making Sehun work for it a little. He trails a single finger along Sehun’s crotch. “I thought you were here for yoga.”

Sehun full-body shudders and leans close enough to make their lips graze. “Get to work, then, teacher.”

“Tsk tsk, Sehunnie, I don't know…” Yixing ducks away from the other man and slowly walks toward the back of the couch where he keeps various things in a trunk. Like a yoga mat. “You didn't even bring a yoga mat like I told you to.” Yixing turns back to Sehun to pout dramatically.

“Must’ve slipped my mind when I was fingering myself open for you.”

Yixing does a good job of not choking on his own words, but his eyes do fall to Sehun’s crotch again. That’s why he’s hard already, then. Yixing just thought he’d been excited. “Ah, so you did come prepared, then.”

“Like I said, couldn't stop thinking of you, of hyung’s body.” Sehun takes an almost predatory step forward.

Yixing finally turns to the trunk to retrieve the yoga mat. And the lube that he may or may not have strategically placed there the night before just in case. “Actually, you said you wanted yoga.”

“Did I?”

Still feigning innocence, Yixing shrugs nonchalantly and moves between the couch and the coffee table–which he’d pushed away from each other to give more room–and sets the bottle of lube down on the table as casually as if it’s a bottle of water, then unrolls the mat. He smiles at Sehun and walks over to his kitchen to retrieve actual bottles of water from his refrigerator.

Sehun sighs, long-suffering, and says, “Nice place, hyung.”

Yixing snorts. “I’ve seen shoeboxes bigger than this place.” He gently kicks the refrigerator shut and moves back into the living area, setting the water down next to the lube.

Sehun just shrugs. “I kinda like it. Besides, it’s not like you can't afford a bigger place, right? I can afford a bigger place and you should make more than me.”

“I’m saving my money.”

“Fair enough.”

Enough casual talk now, Yixing figures, and reaches out for Sehun’s wrist to drag him closer. “Lie on your back,” he practically purrs.

Amusement dances in the light of Sehun’s eyes while the rest of his face remains neutral. He nods and does as he’s told. “Now what, teacher?”

Yixing would be lying if he denied the way blood rushes to his dick when Sehun spreads his legs. He hums and gets to his knees between them, hands delicately grasping under his thighs. “Now, you stretch.” He bites his lip as he slowly pushes the long fucking legs in his grip toward Sehun’s torso.

He purposely presses their crotches together and they both groan.

Any preamble is gone, then. Yixing undulates his hips as he presses forward and kisses Sehun.

The response is immediate, but Yixing quickly learns that Sehun doesn't get invested in kisses, prefers to have his neck nibbled at, which is… a little disappointing, but fine.

Because he loves nibbling, biting just as much, so as long as his lips are occupied, he knows he’ll be sated enough; he doesn't fret.

His hands ruck up Sehun’s shirt so that Yixing can nip his way down Sehun’s stomach, until Yixing is nosing at the treasure trail leading into his sweatpants and then dipping farther down to mouth at Sehun’s erection through his clothes.

Sehun moans. It’s soft and higher pitched than his speaking voice, pretty, so Yixing rids him of his pants and boxers and settles back in to make him do it again, hands wrapped around Sehun’s perfect thighs as Yixing mouths at his balls the same way he had when there were clothes in the way. Sehun’s moan is much louder then and Yixing smirks into the junction where Sehun’s thigh meets his hip, nipping harshly at it. Sehun yelps.

With a laugh–okay no biting with Sehun–Yixing sits back on his haunches. “Hands and knees, Sehun. Facing me.”

Both of their shirts go flying somewhere out of sight and Sehun does as he’s told. Yixing licks his lips and slips out of his own sweatpants and boxer briefs. He gets on his knees in front of Sehun, and holds his half-hard dick up to his lips.

Sehun smirks up at him, and his hot breath fans along Yixing’s length as he speaks, “I’ve never heard of this yoga position before.”

He taps Sehun’s cheek. “That’s why I’m the teacher.”

Yixing actually presses the head of his dick against Sehun’s lips this time and they part without hesitation. Yixing moans as he slips into the wet, searing heat of Sehun’s mouth, shudders as Sehun’s tongue expertly drags along Yixing’s length.

Sinking his hands into Sehun’s hair, Yixing’s head falls back as Sehun licks and sucks at him greedily until he’s fully hard and can barely control the thrusting of his hips. “Is this okay?” Yixing chokes out, gently rocking his hips.

Sehun hums enthusiastically and rocks forward himself, taking Yixing as deeply as he can, the head of Yixing’s length almost slipping into Sehun’s throat.

Yixing’s moans fill the room as he holds Sehun’s head in place and fucks his mouth. He admires the stretch of Sehun’s lips and the flush of his cheeks, wants to get off this way.

But he wants to fuck Sehun’s ass even more.

“How do y-you want to do this?” Yixing pants. He has to slip from Sehun’s mouth for the sake of being able to think straight. It’s been too long. Well, and for the sake of Sehun being able to respond. “Your back or your hands and knees?”

Sehun seems to genuinely ponder this as he catches his breath and licks his lips. “Hands and knees,” he finally says. “You bite. Don't care if the marks are on my back.”

“I can bite you?”

Sehun scoffs as if they’re not sitting there with Yixing’s dick in his face. “Not hard.” His tone is almost petulant and Yixing deflates a little. Luhan was always okay with a little biting. He misses Luhan.

“Okay,” Yixing concedes. “Give your knees a rest for a minute. I forgot a condom.”

Sehun groans. Yixing snorts and mumbles something about safety first before hurrying to his bedroom. “You’re so hot,” Sehun calls after him.

Yixing doesn't bother responding until he’s back and sinking to his knees again, ripping open the foil packet. He eyes the mess of limbs that is Sehun resting on his ass against the couch and smirks, rolling the condom over his length. “I know. So are you.”

“I know.”

“Knees okay?”

“Yes.”

“Then get back on them,” Yixing giggles as he grabs the lube and coats his fingers.

He presses one into Sehun without hesitation and the man on his hands and knees shudders. “I told you I already did this part.”

“Yeah, yeah. Sue me for making sure you’re comfortable.”

But Sehun is still stretched well; it’s no time at all before Yixing has three fingers spreading and finding his prostate to milk more pretty moans from him.

“H-Hyung… now. Before you make me come this way. Please.”

Yixing smirks. “Well since you said please.” He gently removes his fingers and reaches for the lube again to coat his dick.

He sinks in slowly, breath catching in his throat as he works his hardest not to slam into Sehun’s perfectly toned fucking ass.

Yixing thumbs comfortingly at Sehun’s cheeks until the latter stops whimpering and tells him to “start fucking moving.”

Yixing does start out slow, the prolonged slide of his cock in and out of Sehun practically a sin with how good it feels alone, but words fall from Sehun’s mouth in gasps. “Faster. Harder, hyung.” And Yixing wouldn't be a very good hyung if he didn't comply, would he?

He plasters himself to Sehun’s back, nips his neck like a warning, then snaps his hips, hard. Sehun cries out and pushes back against him like he wants more, so Yixing does it again, and again, and again, until he’s just pounding into Sehun relentlessly.

They’re sweating, Yixing’s still-damp hair from his shower soaked through with it now and he keeps slipping, needs something to grip. He slides his hand into Sehun’s hair as he rocks forward. It’s wet between his fingers and he tugs it, but, “N-Not- hair...” Sehun says.

Yixing sighs internally. Who doesn't like having their hair pulled during sex?

So he just rebalances himself, and wraps that hand around Sehun’s leaking dick instead, pumping him quickly until Sehun comes and collapses–Yixing nearly falls over–onto his elbows.

Yixing sits back up, hands gripping Sehun’s hips tight as he fucks him through his orgasm high, and chases his own. It doesn’t take long before his hips are stuttering with the tell-tale sign of being close.

He comes with a long moan and Sehun peeking over his shoulder to watch him fuck himself through it. Sehun rolls his hips helpfully, at least.

Yixing pulls out and blearily takes care of his condom, tossing it in the mini trashcan closest to them before collapsing into Sehun’s personal space.

Sehun doesn't cuddle him like Yixing maybe sort of wants, but he does play with Yixing’s hair at least, so it’s something. “Thanks, hyung.”

“Mm, thank you,” Yixing mumbles, eyes closed and pressing into Sehun’s touch, still blissed out.

“So when’s our next private lesson?”

Yixing snickers and peeks through one open eye. “Who said this one’s over?”

Sehun quirks a perfect, broody eyebrow and Yixing grins.

Yixing makes Sehun do actual yoga, naked, and then fucks him in the shower as a reward for doing so well.

It might not be the worst arrangement.

Chapter Text

Nothing really changes between Yixing and Sehun after their first hookup.

Some things do, like how Yixing flirts less because the game of cat and mouse is over, and how Sehun no longer keeps his hands to himself, always content to slap Yixing’s ass or run a hand along the back of Yixing’s neck because Sehun knows he’s sensitive.

But Yixing was right in thinking that once they got it out of their systems they’d actually become friends, without the overwhelming sexual tension overheating their interactions. There’s a sense of camaraderie between them now, an easy back and forth full of Sehun’s sassiness that Yixing pretends not to enjoy, but really, it’s nice to have a friend around in such an overwhelmingly different place.

Not that he’s the only friend, though. Yixing and Jongdae have hit it off strong again, just like in university. It’s just that Jongdae is much busier than Sehun, being in a much higher position. He can only stop by the gym a couple of times a week, for his personal training sessions, whereas Sehun stops by every day and joins Yixing’s yoga classes because he wants to torture Yixing with his ass, Yixing is certain.

Luckily though, he drags Minseok along with him for the classes, and Yixing really likes Minseok because he helps keep Yixing’s head in place when Sehun is showing off. So much so that he doesn't even seem to suspect that Yixing and Sehun are fucking regularly. Every time Sehun makes a suggestive comment or movement, Minseok is there, slapping him or telling him to calm down and leave Yixing alone, while Yixing just smirks and watches.

(One day though, Minseok has a meeting and can't make it to the yoga class, and Yixing doesn't realize until he’s balls deep in Sehun’s ass in the locker room showers just how much of a buffer Minseok is. Sehun is smug.)

“Why haven't you told Minseok hyung about us, Sehunnie? Isn't he your closest friend?” Sehun just seems like the type that would boast about it to everyone. Or maybe Yixing is just conceited.

Sehun shrugs, tossing his wet hair out of his face and slipping into his white button-up. “Hyung would talk me out of it. Or worse, talk you out of it. Because we work together. He’s very convincing.”

Yixing laughs and steps into his sweatpants. Sehun has a meeting, but Yixing is off now, and he’s long past dressing nice for the front lobby. “So it’s just you trying to keep me as a fuck buddy, then?”

“Yes?” Sehun says like it’s the most obvious answer in the world. “Hyung, I don't know if you know this, but you’re really hot.”

“I’ve been told once or twice.”

“And humble, too,” Sehun adds drily, buckling the belt on his pants.

Yixing chuckles.

“It’s also extra hot that we just did this at work, with the policy and all.”

Freezing, Yixing asks, “What policy?”

“You mean you didn’t read the thousand page handbook? Shocking. No romance between SM employees. It’s distracting, they say.” Sehun sounds bored, as if he didn’t just drop a giant fucking bomb on Yixing’s head. “But really it’s just unfair, I mean, look at you. No one can resist you. You’re the talk of the town around here.”

Yixing has to sit down. “You mean I could lose my job for fucking you? The job where I just fucked you like five seconds ago?!”

“Relax, hyung.” Sehun frowns, as if finally sensing Yixing’s mood. He sits next to him and rests a hand on his back. “There are no cameras in here; that was kinda the point, remember?”

“I just--” Yixing hiccups. “I can’t lose this job, Sehunnie. If I lose this job all of my future plans will be ruined. I’ll--”

“Hyung,” Sehun sighs. “No more hookups at work, alright? But there’s not much that SM can do to us for what happens outside these walls. It’s just fucking. Unless you’re falling for me, which I completely understand. It was bound to happen eventually--”

Yixing shoves him away, laughing, and the topic is dropped. Sehun is right. It’s just fucking. As long as no more slip-ups at work happen and they don’t start falling madly in love or something silly like that, it’ll be fine.

Hopefully.

They head back out into the gym once they’re fully dressed, and Yixing does a sweep of the place to make sure everything and everyone is okay. The only person left is Shindong from accounting on a treadmill, headphones in and talking to someone angrily.

“That fucking Byun Jr. is the most annoying piece of shit. If he takes over any time soon, I’m done with this place.”

Byun Jr. Yixing frowns. He supposes if everyone refers to the CEO as Mr. Byun, Sr. there’s bound to be a junior around, too.

There’s an audience, Yixing realizes belatedly, only brought to his attention by Jongdae’s voice suddenly ringing out. “Hey, Shindong.” He walks up and plucks one of the earbuds from the man’s ear. “Might wanna be careful who and what you’re talking about at work before this place is suddenly done with you.”

And then Jongdae just walks away. Yixing turns surprised eyes to Sehun, who has followed him around the gym, but Sehun is frowning at Shindong.

The man at least looks sheepish, but not very sorry. Yixing decidedly doesn't like the reaction his words elicited from his friends and steps forward. “Hey Shindong-ssi, time to clear out. The gym is closing.”

“But I just got here!” the man all but whines.

Yixing smiles politely. “I’m sorry, but I’m clocked out and need to lock up.”

“This place should just stay open all the time. I don't understand why it closes at all.”

“Safety concerns.” Yixing shrugs.

Shindong sighs longsufferingly and slows his treadmill to a stop. “Alright, I’m going.”

He heads straight for the exit–exchanging glares with Jongdae, next to Minseok now–and Yixing spares a minor thought to where Shindong must have changed before, because Yixing locked the locker rooms from the inside so no one would walk in on him and Sehun.

A hand slips around Yixing’s waist and pulls him close and he looks up at Sehun curiously. “Thanks,” is all the younger man says.

“What was that all about?”

Jongdae and Minseok walk to them and Jongdae sighs. “He was just being an ass. Thanks, hyung, you didn't have to do that.”

Yixing shrugs. “You all were upset. It won't hurt anything to close early.”

“Still, thank you.” Jongdae pats his cheek fondly. “Sehun and I have a meeting to get to now. I’ll let Kyungsoo know he doesn't have to come lock up for you.”

Sehun lets go of Yixing as Yixing is nodding. “Thank you.”

Sehun squeezes the back of his neck then waves as he walks away with Jongdae, leaving Yixing with Minseok. Minseok smiles. “Wanna get some coffee?”

Yixing chuckles. “Sure.”

The walk is short, of course, but in the time it takes them each to order a drink, Yixing’s phone is pinging with a couple of new messages.

> yifan: Your keyboard is shipped!
> yifan: I’ll let you know when to expect it once the tracking number goes live.
> yifan: Miss you, by the way. Liang Liang says hi.

Yixing shoots him back a quick thank you, miss you and Liang Liang too, FanFan before pocketing his phone, grabbing his drink, and sitting with Minseok at the farthest table from the counter.

“You’re frowning,” Minseok notes carefully. “Everything okay?”

“Hm?” Yixing blinks. “Oh. Yeah. Fine. Sorry.” He sighs. “Friend from home just texted me. He’s shipping me my piano.”

“And… this is something to frown about?”

“No. Yes? I don’t know.” Yixing spins his cup in his hands. “He thinks I forgot it, but really I just couldn’t bring myself to bring it with me.”

Minseok hums, nodding slowly. “Why is that?”

Yixing shrugs. “Hard, I guess. I used to-- I used to play for my mom daily. I sold our grand piano to help pay for some of her medical bills, then bought a keyboard as a replacement. She was upset with me, but said I still played beautifully, so it was okay.”

“Is she…?”

“She passed in December.” Roughly nine months ago now. Yixing just tries not to think about it.

Minseok reaches across the table and squeezes his arm. “I’m sorry.”

Yixing just shrugs again, forcing a smile. “It’s fine. I’m a grown man, I should be able to handle myself.”

“She was your mom,” Minseok gently says. “You’re allowed to be emotional. Shit, you’re allowed to be emotional if you stub your toe. Don’t give me that macho man bullshit.”

That, at least pulls a chuckle out of Yixing. “Noted.” He takes a breath. “Sorry for being such a downer.”

“Don’t be.” Minseok waves him off, sitting back in his seat again. “Where did you leave the keyboard anyway? If your friend thinks you forgot it, I mean.”

“My mom’s house. My childhood home. It’s still just… sitting there. With her things left in it. The lawyer managed to lose all of her paperwork, including her will and deed and stuff. So the house is technically mine, by default, but I can’t do anything with it until they find everything. So I turned all the utilities off and Yifan, my friend, goes to check up on it every now and then.”

“That is… grossly careless.”

“Tell me about it.” Yixing sighs. “It just rubs salt into the wound. Drags out the healing process.”

Minseok shakes his head. “I’ll say.”

Silence stretches on for a moment, but it’s not uncomfortable, Yixing realizes.

“Alright! On to brighter topics, yes?” Minseok grins, before offering what seems to be his most dramatic thinking face. “What are your deepest, darkest secrets, Yixing-ssi?”

Yixing laughs into his paper coffee cup, cradled close to his face as he inhales the steam of it. Minseok grins and sips his own. “Jumping right into it, huh?” Yixing teases.

Minseok fakes a scoff, saying, “Come on, we’re bonding!” and Yixing laughs again. He likes Minseok. He’s a rare soul who, despite being 32, has never lost his child-like charm. “Fine, fine. No secret-swapping, today.” The man fakes a pout.

“Good, because I have no deep, dark secrets.”

The quick quirk of Minseok’s eyebrow somehow gives Yixing the impression that he knows about Sehun specifically, for some reason, and he wants to laugh again, because of course Minseok would already know.

But Minseok doesn't say anything, the arched eyebrow is gone, and he’s shrugging. “Neither do I.” A pause. “You know, I’m curious. You knew Jongdae and Junmyeon in college, right?”

“Ah! Yes!” Yixing nods. “Jongdae was my roommate and closest friend here, and Junmyeon was in our Performance Theatre class our second to last year. He was a senior. We worked on a couple of projects together! You’re close with them?”

“Recently, yes!” Minseok beams. “I mean we’ve always been in the same friend group, but recently we’ve gotten really close. It’s really cool that you ended up working in the same company as Jongdae!”

“Truly. I didn't expect to know anyone here. Thought I’d be alone for a while.” A playful, wistful sip of Yixing’s coffee, and Minseok chuckles.

“Well lucky for you with Jongdae comes many of us. Our friend group is very tight-knit.”

Yixing hums, intrigued, but then Minseok asks about university life with Jongdae, so Yixing reminisces happily. He feels like he goes on for hours, diving into old adventures that he hadn’t thought about in years probably, and Minseok indulges him excitedly, eating up the details and laughing along with him when Yixing talks about the time someone hid their clothes in theatre class and Jongdae had to go out in front of Junmyeon in only his boxers.

“How embarrassed was he?” Minseok giggles into his almost empty cup. The shop is closing around them but the girl behind the counter insisted they don’t have to move.

“So embarrassed!” Yixing laughs. “I felt bad for him. From where I was fallen to the ground and laughing my ass off.”

Minseok covers his mouth to stifle his laugh. “You clearly didn’t have any issues being half-naked.”

A shrug. “No. It probably wouldn’t have bothered me being fully naked hones--” Yixing’s phone buzzes on the small table between them and they both look down. It’s Sehun.

> sehun: You should come over, hyung. Please :’(

Yixing snorts and shakes his head. Minseok quirks a brow again. “He probably keeps you busy.”

He knew Minseok knew already. Yixing just laughs. “He tries to. I have to put my foot down sometimes.”

“That’s the only way to handle Sehun,” Minseok grins. “Are you going to go?”

Yixing shrugs. “Probably not. Last time I went to his apartment he spent more time cooing over his dog than actually wanting to...” Yixing remembers their surroundings and tilts his head pointedly. “Spend time together.”

“I wish I was surprised by that.”

“He really loves that dog.”

“He’s obsessed, but it’s really cute all the same.”

Yixing shrugs again. It could be cute, if Sehun didn’t hang sex over Yixing’s head only to pay more attention to his pet. “Yeah. So you’re not bothered by us?”

“No? Why would I be?” Minseok frowns.

“Sehun said you would try to talk him out of it if you knew about us fucking around.”

Minseok chuckles. “I just try to keep him level-headed. And…” He sits back in his chair. “I’m just protecting him. I know he’s an adult, but he’s like my little brother and it’s risky for him to get into these casual flings. He gets attached.”

Ah. Yixing hadn't considered this being a huge possibility with Sehun. He’s so flippant about their “fling,” Yixing assumed detached was Sehun’s middle name. Yixing hums in understanding, thoughtful, and Minseok leans forward again.

“Let me know if I need to protect him, okay?”

~*~

“We’ve gotten multiple complaints about the gym hours lately.”

Yixing squints. It’s six o’clock in the morning, an hour earlier than he was scheduled, and he hasn’t had a drop of coffee, so Kyungsoo’s voice really isn't making sense to him right now. In fact, it might be lulling him to sleep. “What?”

Kyungsoo waves a hand, annoyed with an invisible force, and it's the most candid Yixing has seen him get during a business call. “People are complaining. We have to fix it. You need to hire an assistant manager.”

“...What?”

Kyungsoo stares at him a moment, and then chuckles. Yixing must be dreaming. “You haven't had your coffee yet, have you?”

“No…”

“Come on.” Kyungsoo stands from his chair behind his desk and motions toward the door. “Let’s go get some coffee.”

~*~

So Yixing needs an assistant manager.

Kyungsoo stayed with Yixing (and coffee) in his office until 6:30, discussing procedure for hiring and what kind of criteria the future employee should meet, explaining that they would be taking applications over the course of the next two days. Interviews will be the day after that.

Despite the coffee intake, when Kyungsoo leaves him alone at 6:30, Yixing falls on his office couch face first and deems a nap the most important thing on his list of things to do today.

He doesn’t know how long he’s been out when a weight settles on his ass, pinning his hips to the couch. “Hyung.”

Yixing grunts. “Ge’ off me.”

“It’s 7:06, hyung.”

“You’re late,” Yixing mumbles petulantly.

Sehun snorts. “Yeah and you’re asleep. Come on, I brought you coffee ‘cause I’m nice like that.”

“If you’re nice then please stop sitting on me.” Yixing squirms, the grogginess from his nap slowly slipping away.

“I thought you like it when I sit on you.”

“When you’re sitting on my dick. Not my ass. Off.”

“Jerk.”

“Baby.”

A gasp. “I am offended--” And then a yelp, because Yixing uses all his strength to turn over and unseat Sehun. “Ow.”

“Sorry.”

“Are not.”

“No, I’m really not.”

“Jerk.”

“Baby.”

“Ugh-!”

“Am I interrupting something?”

Yixing whips his head to see Jongdae standing in the doorway with a quirked, but amused, brow. “Jongdae!” he says happily.

Jongdae chuckles while Sehun picks himself up off the floor. “Sehun, are you being a nuisance again?”

“Absolutely not. I was being a good person and waking Yixing hyung up, since he fell asleep, but what do I get? Knocked to the floor.” Sehun sniffles indignantly and brushes off his work pants.

Jongdae cackles then while Yixing shrugs. “He sat on me.”

“Sehunnie, what have I told you about sitting on people?”

In the most monotone voice Sehun can manage, he says, “People don’t like being woken up that way.”

Jongdae and Yixing snicker in unison, and Yixing pats Sehun’s butt as he passes him to locate the supposed coffee Sehun had brought him. “What brings you here, Jongdae-yah?” he asks.

“Oh, I have an application for you!”

Yixing squints at the papers Jongdae holds out for him. “Isn’t it only 7AM? How the hell--”

“This is just the start, my friend.”

“What does that even mean?”

~*~

It means that there are many, many people in Seoul and it’s surrounding areas that seek a job with SM Inc., and when they hear of a technically entry level position opening that doesn’t necessarily require a degree… people like Kyungsoo and Yixing? Utterly drown in applications.

They receive over fifty just in the first day, and Yixing doesn’t bother to keep count the second. Kyungsoo enlists Jongdae’s help to filter out the clearly bad choices, and Yixing enlists Minseok, but it’s still not enough, really. Yixing still has appointments to tend to, and the other three still have their own jobs to take care of.

By seven o’clock Thursday evening, they’ve only narrowed it down to forty-one applicants, and per Mr. Byun Sr.’s orders, have to take them all in for an interview the next day.

Kyungsoo composes an email while Yixing pulls email addresses for him.

“Not everyone will show,” Kyungsoo murmurs into his computer screen. “Too short notice.”

“These people were clearly enthusiastic, though.”

Kyungsoo nods. “There’s no way you’ll be able to get through forty-one interviews tomorrow.” He runs a hand down his face and leans back in his chair. “I hate to give you homework, but if you can narrow down the list some more tonight, tomorrow you can give the ones who don’t make the cut a quick interview. Ask them a few questions then dismiss them. Only focus on the ones that are the best fit.”

“It’s going to be a long night.”

Kyungsoo winces sympathetically.

~*~

A long night turns into all night.

Yixing doesn’t get a wink of sleep that night and is jittery with it and too much coffee by the time his first interviewee enters his office.

He stands for her and bows, introduces himself. She smiles brightly in return and says her name is Nao.

Yixing finds her application and when he looks back up, catches sight of Sehun outside of the doorway behind Nao. He's shaking his head, pointedly nodding toward the girl. Yixing squints a little, and Nao glances behind her curiously; Sehun ducks to the right to hide.

"Is everything okay, Yixing-ssi?" Nao asks sweetly.

"Er, yes, sorry. I thought I saw something. Tell me about yourself, Nao. What makes you a good fit for this job?"

Yixing's phone buzzes on the desk and a hand waves a phone frantically in the doorway. Sehun. Yixing sighs. "Sorry. Give me one moment, please."

> sehun: don't hire her!
> sehun: heard her talking to another girl in the hallway. she just wants in your pants. faked her resume. you're welcome for the warning.

Yixing sighs. There's no reason Sehun would lie to him. But he has to continue the interview, so that's exactly what he does.

Fifteen interviews in and it's clear that most people's intentions are to get close to “the hot trainer” or, more commonly, to SM Inc. in general. He's pulling his hair and begging Kyungsoo for a break by then. It's torture. He doesn't even know these people, but apparently they know other employees within SM. Yixing is the King of flirting himself, but the amount of pickup lines used on him in job interviews today has completely drained him of the very little energy he had to begin with.

"It can't be that bad," Kyungsoo says.

Yixing groans into the phone. "But it really is, Kyungsoo. A guy actually asked me if he could watch me benchpress to study my form."

"That's... questionable. But seemingly valid, right?"

"Kyungsoo," Yixing whines. "He doesn't need to see my form to train others. I don’t even look like I bench press! I’m small, Kyungsoo! Small!”

"Touche." Kyungsoo sighs. "I'll push your next interview back fifteen minutes and have Chanyeol bring you some coffee and a muffin. Sit tight."

Yixing could kiss him. "Thank you. Wait why Chanyeol--"

The line clicks and Yixing sighs. Kyungsoo has warmed up to him considerably over the past month or so–Yixing would even consider them tentative friends–but they still need to work on Kyungsoo's phone skills.

He lays his head down on his desk and takes a deep breath.

In such a short amount of time it could only mean Yixing fell asleep, Chanyeol arrives at his office with the largest cup of coffee the shop down the hall has, and a white box.

"Oh, Chanyeollie, I love you," Yixing mumbles, reaching out for the coffee even though the other man hasn't even walked through the door yet.

Chanyeol chuckles, flushed cheeks beaming and shakes his head, handing over the coffee and setting the box down. "At least, I don't know, take me to dinner first?"

Yixing giggles appreciatively. Chanyeol has also grown more comfortable with Yixing over the past month. He's a good kid. Yixing thinks Chanyeol might be one of his favorites. "Sorry, sorry. I just feel so strongly about this coffee-- I mean, you." Yixing takes a languid sip and hums, content.

"Ha ha," Chanyeol rolls his eyes and plops down in the chair opposite Yixing, opening the white box. The smell of warm pastries fills Yixing's nostrils and his mouth waters. "Come on," Chanyeol says. "You get first pick. I gotta take the rest up to a meeting for Kyungsoo hyung."

"I'm honored." Yixing plucks a cinnamon coffee cake muffin from the mix and settles back in his chair. "You work in the lobby, Chanyeol."

Chanyeol nods. "And you work in the gym!"

"So why are you running errands for Kyungsoo?"

"Wh-- I'm just-- being… nice. I'm just being nice. Yes. That is what I'm doing." Chanyeol coughs and starts whistling, avoiding eye contact.

Yixing grins. "Chanyeollie, are you even trying to lie to me?"

"Haha! I don't know what you're talking about! Gotta go!" Chanyeol nearly knocks his chair over in his haste to stand, and almost crushes all of the pastries when he fumbles to close the box.

Yixing laughs. "Chanyeol! Please admit that you like Kyungsoo. I'm dying here."

Wide eyes stare at him. "I d-- since when are you such a gossip!?" Chanyeol whines.

"You like Kyungsoo~," Yixing sings teasingly.

"I feel very attacked right now. I am leaving!"

"Does he like you back? Or are you just doing him favors to win his affection?"

"Yixing hyung," Chanyeol whines again. He covers his cheeks with his hands. "I feel like a child."

Yixing pokes out his bottom lip. "It's okay, Chanyeollie. I think you would be good for him."

Chanyeol squeezes his eyes shut and tries, impossibly, to cover his face even more. "Yixing!"

"I'm sorry. Sleep deprivation ruins my brain to mouth filter. But really. Maybe you should try sexual favors inst--"

Chanyeol snatches the box of pastries and bolts from the office, shouting "La la la!" to block out Yixing's voice. Yixing just chuckles and takes a bite of his muffin.

~*~

It’s when there are only ten interviewees left that Yixing finally finds a match.

The kid is around Sehun’s age, a little older maybe, tall and fit and a dancer just like Yixing. They find common ground there, talk easily about their passions and why he would be a good fit to work under Yixing.

Yixing is so sure, he composes an email on the spot to Kyungsoo.

---
to dokyungsoo@sm.cr
Found one. Submit for a background check for Kim Jongin. I’m sending him up to you as soon as I wrap up.

Z. Yixing
---

Yixing speeds through the rest of his interviews, cuts questions, is only half-invested. Only one other candidate comes close, Kang Seulgi, and he sends her to Kyungsoo for the sake of variety, but he really thinks the spot will go to Jongin.

~*~

Yixing jolts awake to the sound of loud, carefree laughter.

He blinks his eyes, hard, disoriented and not totally aware of where he is, but when he picks his head up, a paper stuck to his face and a dull ache in his back, he groans. He’s still at work, at his desk.

It’s Jongdae cackling in front of him.

“Tired, Xing?” he asks when Yixing detaches the paper from his cheek and runs a hand down his entire face.

“Exhausted,” he mumbles back.

“Aww,” Jongdae pouts. “But I’m inviting you to a party~!”

Yixing groans again, leaning back in his chair. “No thanks, not tonight.”

The pout only becomes more pronounced. “It’s not like a rager or anything! Junmyeon and Baekhyun throw these parties like once a week, so people can unwind.” Yixing squints at the name Baekhyun. He has no idea who that is. “It’s very casually sophisticated. Or… sophisticatedly casual? Yeah, that sounds more like it. Anyway-- look. You’ve been all work and no play since you got here--”

“That’s not true.” Yixing raises his eyebrows pointedly.

Jongdae rolls his eyes. “What? You banging Oh Sehun? You talk more like it’s a chore at this point than something fun. Why don’t you come tonight? You could meet new people! Everyone’s really chill. Plus, there’s always like, the most heavenly tasting champagne, and really good food. I don’t know. Please?”

Yixing is squinting again, because Jongdae is saying a lot of words that his still half-asleep brain can’t process. “Uh,” he says. “If I agree will you talk a little slower? I’m so tired, Jongdae.”

“Aww,” Jongdae coos again, leaning over the desk to pat Yixing’s hair. “Yes, Xing. You won’t regret it, I don’t think! Baekhyun is very selective about who he lets go to these things, so it really is a chill crowd. Sehun and Minseok will be there! And maybe Chanyeol? He doesn’t go every week, but he does sometimes!”

“Alright alright,” Yixing almost whines. “Stop trying to convince me, I’ll go. For a little while.”

Jongdae cheers and Yixing wakes up his computer and sees a new email from Kyungsoo.

---
from: dokyungsoo@sm.cr

Yixing,
I still have to wait on the background check, but I’ve decided to move ahead with Kim Jongin. Kang Seulgi was also a good choice, you were right, so I’ll keep her application on file just in case.

Good work.
Get some sleep.

Do Kyungsoo, COO
---

-

The drive to this Baekhyun’s place is hazy for Yixing. They live maybe forty minutes apart, and the main thing that begins to catch Yixing’s attention is the transformation of what he considers “regular Seoul” into the richer districts, because Baekhyun lives in Apgujeong.

He sighs as he pulls into a parking garage, because apparently this guy’s place is a penthouse in a building big enough to have its own parking garage.

Yixing feels out of place already.

But he gets out of his car and speaks to the guard at the elevator for directions and makes his way up.

When he reaches the correct floor, he knocks on the penthouse door because he’s probably an idiot. He can hear the buzz of chatter and clinking glasses and laughter from where he stands so literally no one will hear him.

He waits a moment anyway. Mentally prepares himself. Adjusts the collar of his shirt. He’s wearing the same thing he wore into the SM building on his first day: black button up, tight, fitted black jeans, black dress shoes, navy blue blazer. He didn’t know what else to choose.

He sighs. Why did he even accept Jongdae’s invitation? He’s exhausted and absolutely not meant to mingle amongst the filthy rich, not outside of work at least. And if the building this fucking penthouse is in is any indication… Baekhyun must be the most filthy rich of them all.

Stealing himself, he twists the doorknob and pushes the door open.

His senses are flooded. Voices. Laughter. Clinking glasses. Cinnamon. Overpriced cologne.

“Yixiiiiing!”

A happy Jongdae strides toward him almost immediately, clad in an outfit similar to his own, except maroon is involved instead of blue, and with an incredibly attractive man attached to his hip in an expensive looking suit. Yixing doesn't have one of those. An attractive man. Unfortunately.

Yixing offers a warm smile to his friend and old classmate, Junmyeon.

“Yixing!” Jongdae exclaims again, clapping him on the shoulder and pulling him into a hug. Yixing chuckles. “I’m glad you came!” The younger man pulls away and waves a flourishing hand toward Junmyeon. “This is Junmyeon! You know…” Jongdae nudges Yixing. “Him.”

Junmyeon looks mildly embarrassed but mostly used to the behavior and bows. “As if we haven’t met before multiple times but I guess I’ll play along.”

A bow in return and Yixing laughs. “Likewise.”

Much like Jongdae, Junmyeon mostly looks the same as he did in university. Just sleeker, hair jet black instead of the dusty pink he had in theatre class, jawline more defined, eyes sharper. It comes with being a lawyer, Yixing supposes.

Jongdae looks back and forth between the two of them, grinning ear to ear. “Yah!” he exclaims excitedly, throwing his arms around both their shoulders and leading them further into the large, open penthouse. “Let’s get you a drink, Yixing!”

Yixing and Junmyeon share a look behind Jongdae’s head, Junmyeon’s eyebrows sending a clear message. Jongdae’s already had plenty to drink.

The champagne does taste pretty heavenly, Yixing finds out. He sips it lethargically as he pays rapt attention to Junmyeon, catching him up on his life. They swap stories, and it’s sweet, Yixing thinks, because Junmyeon wouldn’t be going through so much trouble if it weren’t for the sake of Jongdae, because Yixing and Junmyeon were never very close. Just acquaintances who did projects together.

Junmyeon is more charming than Yixing remembers, with a soft voice that would carry Yixing away to dreamland if it wasn’t paired with Jongdae’s unforgivably loud one. They balance each other out quite nicely. Yixing is happy for them.

Just when there’s a give in conversation, as if planned, an interruption makes itself known.

“Junmyeonnie~,” a lilting voice sing-songs from behind Yixing, close, almost startling. Yixing doesn't have to turn around to look because the owner of the voice gently brushes past him and wraps long, pretty fingers around Junmyeon’s arm.

Yixing’s not sure why that’s the first thing he notices. Although they are nice hands. But, well.

The newcomer is short, a couple of inches below Yixing, with kohl-lined, pale blue eyes (contacts?) and light brown hair that looks nearly as soft as the creme-colored cashmere sweater he wears. It’s out of place amongst the slew of blazers and slacks, Yixing included, but it works for him.

Junmyeon smiles.

“Junmyeonnie,” the stranger repeats, pink lips pulling into a grin. “When are you going to introduce me to your new friend?”

“Ah, Yixing, this is B--”

“Baekhyun. It’s a pleasure.” Baekhyun bows.

“Interrupting is rude,” Jongdae mumbles.

Junmyeon snorts. “Even moreso considering he told me to introduce him.”

“I’m Yixing.” Yixing bows, ignoring the others and keeping his eyes on Baekhyun.

Their gentle smirks at each other happen simultaneously and Jongdae all but jumps in between them. “Yixing! Why don’t we get more drinks?”

Yixing glances pointedly down at his too-full glass of champagne. “I’m good, Dae.”

“And so are you,” Junmyeon cuts in, poking Jongdae’s shoulder.

“You and Junmyeonnie could go get drinks,” Baekhyun suggests, blues eyes sparkling conspiratorially. “Or get a head start on your special couch time. I’m sure I can keep Yixing-ssi company.”

“Special couch time?” Yixing laughs, confused, just as Jongdae sputters an indignant, “Absolutely not!”

“Yes.” Baekhyun shares a mischievous grin. “You see, every party we have, Jongdae and Junmyeonnie somehow end up on the same couch, sucking each other’s--”

Jongdae claps a hand over Baekhyun’s mouth. “Enough!” He lets go when Baekhyun licks his hand, groaning.

“You could've at least let me get one or two more words out,” Baekhyun tsks. “Now Yixing-ssi will never know if I was going to say faces or dicks.” A shit-eating grin has Yixing snickering behind his hand and Jongdae whining. Junmyeon just rolls his eyes, clearly used to Baekhyun’s antics.

“Is that what kind of parties you guys throw?” Yixing says into his glass, tipping it back.

“That’s for us to know, and you to find out, Yixing-ssi.” Baekhyun’s cheeks shine, eyes glimmering. He’s just so goddamn bright.

It goes on like that, for the next inconceivable amount of time. Baekhyun picking fun at Jongdae and Junmyeon, Jongdae whining about it. Baekhyun subtly flirting with Yixing, Jongdae constantly trying to separate them while Junmyeon just keeps the peace between everyone.

The conversations carry away from Yixing, considering he’s with three people who know each other very well. He’s but a stranger. So he takes the time to observe. The penthouse for one, the way the larger than life living room bleeds into two hallways and a staircase; he knows one of the hallways leads to the sleek kitchen, where they had gotten their drinks, but the rest is an enigma mostly. It’s clear Baekhyun has exquisite taste and the budget to match and then some, probably. The TV on the living room wall nearly covers the entire space, the couches look like they’re made with pure silk or velvet or something, and the lights are dimmed just enough to create this quiet, almost romantic ambience that lulls Yixing into intrigue, rather than his creeping exhaustion.

He observes Jongdae and Junmyeon, a little in awe both in that they've grown up and that they actually ended up together in the end. They’re close, constant touches and loving glances and quick pecks to the mouth that leave Yixing feeling a hair queasy, speaking directly to his inherent loneliness. It’s not even just the two of them, the three of them are close; through various stories and comments, Yixing learns that Baekhyun and Junmyeon grew up together, went to private school together, and would’ve gone to college together to if Junmyeon hadn’t “rebelled” against his parents and gone to--gasp--public school.

But more often than not, Yixing’s attention falls on solely Baekhyun.

There’s a freckle on the right corner of his upper lip, one in the middle of his right cheek and at the center of his collarbone. Yixing doesn't realize his gaze is drifting downward until he’s assessing the thick thighs hugged tight by fitted, black pants. They’re good thighs. Better than Sehun’s, if Yixing had to compare.

When his eyes reach safe territory again and suddenly meet cool blue ones, Baekhyun is smirking at him.

Yixing schools his expression into one of nonchalance, quirking a brow.

Baekhyun bites his lip. “Has anyone shown Yixing-ssi around? Why don't I give him the grand tour?”

“Ah yes, you’re the grand host tonight,” Yixing says.

A hand flies to Baekhyun’s broad chest in feaux shock. “Yes! Do you like my home?”

“Choose your words carefully,” Junmyeon warns. “Baekhyunnie needs validation to survive.”

Yixing straightens his posture, mockingly proper. “It is very nice.”

“I’d be offended if I didn't know you were joking,” Baekhyun giggles, and Yixing thinks it’s the cutest thing he’s done thus far, paired with shining eyes that show he’s clearly pleased with the compliment regardless.

Yixing winks. “Well it’s a good thing you can read me so well already.”

“I’ll say.”

Yixing’s tunnel vision for the soft man before him is blocked, filled with a bewildered Jongdae instead. “Hyung, I forgot Chanyeol was looking for you earlier. Why don't we go find him?”

“Um.”

“Great!” Jongdae grabs Yixing by the wrist and drags him away while a collective sigh seems to ring through him, Junmyeon, and Baekhyun over Jongdae’s behavior.

They find Chanyeol in what can only be described as a game room, playing pool with someone Yixing’s never seen before. There are a few spectators that include Sehun and Minseok, who both brighten at the sight of the newcomers.

Yixing beelines for them and leans down to mumble in Minseok’s ear, “Since when did Jongdae become the biggest cockblock in history, hyung?”

Minseok laughs, his nose scrunching and head tilting. His eyes dance as they land on Jongdae, who somehow looks nervous. He probably lied about Chanyeol. Go figure. “Who is he keeping you from?” Minseok asks.

“Baekhyun.”

Minseok tears his amused gaze away from Jongdae, and it melts into something more knowing. He nods. “Ah, I see. Well…”

“What?” Yixing groans, and Sehun slips behind him and wraps his arms around him, nestling his chin on Yixing’s shoulder. Yixing pats his arms comfortingly. “Is the guy a serial killer or something?”

At that, Jongdae squawks and Minseok laughs. “Definitely not. I’m sure our Jongdae is just trying to protect you.”

“Yeah!” Jongdae exclaims, defensive. “I’m just being a good friend!”

“While I appreciate that Jongdae-yah, I can take care of myself. He seems harmless.”

Jongdae just mumbles back, “Seems.”

Minseok rolls his eyes, then. “Alright, stop being dramatic--”

“Yixing hyung!” A deep voice bellows across the room. Chanyeol has spotted him, seemingly finished with his game and heading their way.

“Chanyeol,” Yixing greets warmly, and Chanyeol hugs him even though there's a Sehun attached to his back. “Did you win?”

“Nah,” the kid shakes his head. “Amber kicked my ass. She’s been practicing.”

Sehun pipes up next to Yixing’s ear. “Chanyeol is really good at pool, like, it’s freaky.”

“Amber’s beaten me before though.”

Jongdae laughs. “She’s the only one!”

Yixing is lulled into a comfortable silence by Sehun’s unrelenting warmth as the conversation carries on. He finds himself smiling, fond of these people surrounding him. Even when he isn't talking, too tired to keep up, they make him feel welcome, a part of them, and he never expected to find this here so quickly.

But the crowd disperses eventually; Chanyeol is hungry, Sehun needs to pee, Minseok wants to go in the living room. Yixing and Jongdae follow them out, and find Junmyeon alone, Baekhyun nowhere in sight. Yixing tries to hide his disappointment as Junmyeon wraps an arm around Jongdae and presses a kiss to his cheek.

“Have you calmed down?” Junmyeon chuckles against Jongdae’s skin.

Jongdae grumbles something unintelligible and opts to kiss Junmyeon full on the lips instead.

Yixing politely looks away and uses it as an excuse to search for Baekhyun’s light brown hair and soft cashmere sweater. No such luck.

In his time politely ignoring his old friends however, they've become attached at the… everything. He suddenly has a front row seat to Junmyeon’s tongue licking at Jongdae’s bottom lip and while it’s admittedly pretty hot, Yixing feels like an intruder.

He slips away and finds the couches–Baekhyun has three placed in a U shape with the TV wall serving as the fourth side–unoccupied, and takes one for himself, sitting at an end where he can lean his back against the arm and face the empty couch before him. He immediately wishes he had fetched another glass of champagne, having finished his last one in the game room, if only to have something to do with his hands, but he’s already too comfortable. The couch is unreasonably comfortable. Definitely fancy fabric, and fancy stuffing, or… whatever.

Or maybe Yixing is really just that exhausted. He misses sleep. Sleep is his greatest friend.

He blinks and the couch across from his own is suddenly occupied by the very friends he had escaped. They're tangled in ways Yixing can't even begin to comprehend and they giggle into each other’s mouths like teenaged lovers, like it’s still new and exciting to be in love.

Yixing wonders how long that lasts as he watches Jongdae reach for the coffee table laden with snacks to pluck a chocolate from one of the bowls. He unwraps it and slowly, teasingly feeds it to Junmyeon, licks his own fingers and then Junmyeon’s lips.

Yixing is intruding again.

He sighs and lets his head roll to the side to rest against the couch. He should go home, really. Catch up on sleep. Even if Baekhyun was around, Yixing is way too tired to have the kind of fun he wants, and thinks Baekhyun wants to.

And then a voice sounds behind him. “Is my party boring you, Yixing-ssi?” There’s this constant teasing lilt to Baekhyun’s voice that makes Yixing’s lips quirk with amusement of their own accord.

“Well I was just debating leaving. Been a long day. But maybe I could be convinced to stay a little longer.” Yixing pats the open cushion in front of him as Baekhyun hands him a new glass of champagne.

He sees Baekhyun rise to the challenge in his expression, a smugness overwhelming the rich man’s amusement, Yixing thinks that, yes, maybe this will be a challenge after all. He should make Baekhyun work for it.

“Well,” Baekhyun says, sitting down next to him. “Good thing I led my university’s debate team to nationals.”

Yixing laughs. So cheesy for someone so seemingly charming. “Is that so?”

“Mm.” Baekhyun tilts his body more toward Yixing and sips languorously from his own champagne glass. Yixing likes the way his lips curl around the glass. “Talking comes easy to me. I could do it all night.”

He smirks. “So talk.”

Baekhyun scoffs. “And do all the work myself? I’m not that easy, Yixing-ssi.” He leans into the couch and sighs wistfully, gaze moving across the room before it roams back along Yixing’s face. “You first.”

“So what? You want to play 20 Questions?” Yixing chuckles. “Fine. Is that why you host these parties? To talk the night away?”

Baekhyun sizes him up, grins. “That. Or to see what pretty boys like you look like on my couch.”

“I’m the pretty boy?” Yixing smirks into his glass and Baekhyun does the same.

“Hmm, I think it was my turn for a question.”

Yixing motions with his hand to proceed, bracing himself for the oncoming flirt.

“What’s your favorite color?”

Or not. Yixing actually laughs. “Blue. Yours?”

“Mm, you look good in blue.” Baekhyun momentarily fiddles with the collar of Yixing’s blue blazer. “Red. Tell me, are the boys as pretty as me back in China?”

A surprised noise escapes Yixing against his will and Baekhyun laughs. “You’re sharp.”

“Well, I’m certainly not stupid. Yixing is a Chinese name.”

Yixing nods. “Some people don’t catch on.”

“That’s because people don’t bother to. I work in advertising, it’s better that I pay attention.”

“SM?”

Baekhyun flashes an almost wry smile. “Yes.”

“Ah, me too!” Though a voice rings in the back of his head to be careful. He shouldn’t get tangled with another SM employee.

But still, Yixing wonders why he's never seen him around.

It’s later, when they’ve consumed a couple more glasses of champagne and Yixing feels more like he’s drifting in a dream than conversing in real life that Baekhyun brings the topic back to work. Sort of.

“So you work at SM, do you?” he asks with a secretive smirk, but it’s a secret Yixing’s not in on, clearly.

He nods. “I just took over the gym there.”

Baekhyun tilts his head, blinking innocently. It’s fucking distracting, the way his eyelashes brush his rosy cheeks. “Do you like being in charge, Yixing?”

It’s not like it’s hard to pick up what Baekhyun is putting down, so Yixing’s lips twitch into the smallest amused grin and he says, “I think it was my turn for a question.” He sips champagne from his glass then, slow, a show of his own plump lips around the rim of the glass. He doesn't have to look to know Baekhyun’s eating it up.

“Hmm… were you actually going to give me a tour of this place, or did I get my hopes up for nothing?”

Baekhyun giggles excitedly and leans into Yixing’s personal space, grabbing a handful of his blazer as he breathes strawberry champagne breath onto his lips, “Come on,” and yanks Yixing from the couch. “This is the living room!” Baekhyun flourishes.

“I had kind of figured that out by now.”

Tossing a grin over his shoulder, Baekhyun shrugs. “You wanted a tour, Yixing. You’re getting a tour.” He pulls Yixing by the wrist and they leave their flaunter friends behind. “That’s the bathroom!” he shouts as they pass a closed door. His voice is way too loud for the ambience of the party, but they laugh anyway, leaning into each other for support as they weave their way clumsily through the lingering party-goers. “The kitchen,” Baekhyun says with more contentedness. “We should eat. Maybe there’s something left.”

“Mm, not hungry. For food.” Yixing has Baekhyun by the hips as he follows him to the fridge and leans over his shoulder to playfully nip at his ear.

Baekhyun bites his lip as he turns in Yixing’s hold and lets him back him into the counter. “I’ve got plenty for you to eat,” he murmurs, eyes drooping and hands sliding up Yixing’s chest to grip the collar of his blazer.

Yixing sinks into the scent of champagne and faint cologne, cinnamon, into the feeling of warm breath and Baekhyun’s lips pressing against his, of cashmere beneath his fingertips. Baekhyun hums and presses closer.

“Aw, come on, this is the kitchen. Get a room!”

Yixing blinks, feeling very much like he’s just woken up, and Baekhyun slips from his grasp with startling precision. “Yoona noona,” he giggles in greeting. “We were just about to. You didn’t see us!”

“Yeah, yeah, Baek,” Yoona says just as Chanyeol walks in eating a half sandwich.

“That looks good,” Yixing says, suddenly desperate to derail his and Baekhyun’s current path. This wasn’t part of Yixing’s game. “Are there any more?”

Chanyeol goes wide-eyed and Baekhyun whines. “Park Chanyeol, did you eat all of my food again?!”

“Come on, Baek, I’m not the only person at this party!” Chanyeol whines back.

Yixing sleepily picks at a bowl of grapes on the counter as they bicker, and despite himself, finds his finger hooked around one of Baekhyun’s belt loops, not that he had ventured very far anyway. If anything he keeps shifting closer to Yixing, as if seeking contact, or warmth.

Chanyeol and Yoona leave and when Baekhyun turns to him, mouth open and ready to speak, Yixing slips a grape between his parted lips, giggling when Baekhyun squawks in surprise, and drags Baekhyun from the kitchen and to untouched parts of the home. “This is the gameroom!” he says in his best fake tour guide voice, though it’s ruined by the way his words sort of slur.

“Yah this is my tour!” Baekhyun complains, already dragging Yixing backward from the room. He waves at the curious onlookers innocently. “You are least familiar with upstairs, I think.”

“Oh yeah? What’s upstairs?” Yixing is breathless and Baekhyun’s hands aren't leaving him, roaming his hips and tugging futilely at his shirt as he pushes Yixing ahead of him.

“Bedrooms.”

“Ooh,” Yixing teases. “Bedrooms. Plural.”

Baekhyun scoffs as they ascend the stairs. “Just more places to fuck, my dear--”

Yixing stumbles, because Baekhyun’s hand is so deep between Yixing’s thighs they graze his crotch and he’s just too fucking exhausted and too damn tipsy to hold it together. It’s exactly why he wants to hold off with Baekhyun. He’s no fun when he’s so sensitive.

Baekhyun laughs and keeps him from falling backward, fingers digging into his thigh enticingly. Yixing almost groans; Baekhyun’s hands are so nice, so pretty, so adept, he bets.

Safely, they make it, and Baekhyun makes a show of skipping over the guest bedrooms, and beelining for the end of the hall.

“But what if I want to see the guest bedrooms?” Yixing asks, standing still and making Baekhyun run into him.

“They're quite boring, Yixing-ssi.”

“Maybe I like boring, Baekhyun-ssi.”

A body presses into him, lips brush his sensitive neck and he shivers. “Somehow,” Baekhyun murmurs. “I doubt that.”

And he would be right.

Yixing supposes that’s how he ends up pressed into the wall next to a door he can only assume is the way to Baekhyun’s bedroom, with his tongue slipping between Baekhyun’s so-pliant lips, met with the faint taste of alcohol and the sweet sapidity of grapes. A thigh nestles between his legs and he grinds into it, moans, and fingers tug greedily at his hair, hot breaths mingling as they pant and Baekhyun stands taller for more leverage.

Someone clears their throat.

They part as if electrocuted.

Baekhyun wipes his mouth with the back of his hand and turns on their visitor. “What?”

Yixing finally looks too, as he fixes his hair, but doesn't really recognize the guy with the unimpressed eyebrows standing before them. He had been in the gameroom earlier, maybe.

“Jongdae said to come back to the living room or else,” he drawls. Yixing scoffs.

“He actually surfaced for air?” Baekhyun asks drily.

The guy shrugs and walks away.

Once the shock of the moment wears away, Baekhyun pounces again. “It’s not like we have to listen,” he murmurs seductively, pressing Yixing against the wall again. “What’s he gonna do to us, Yixing-ssi?”

Yixing grins–this is the perfect out–and leans down to his ear. “I don't think I want to find out.” And then he removes himself from his place between Baekhyun and the wall with ease, grabbing his wrist and dragging him toward the staircase.

Baekhyun sighs.

Back on the couch where they started, Yixing can barely keep his eyes open.

He blinks sleepily around the room and his gaze lands on Junmyeon and Jongdae who are still attached. He watches unabashedly for a moment, at the way Jongdae subtly grinds against Junmyeon’s thigh. Yixing bites the inside of his lip when his dick throbs with want. He wants to be back upstairs with Baekhyun. But Yixing knows his body, and knows he wouldn't last long.

Baekhyun’s hand strokes up and down Yixing’s thigh. He’s bolder with his touches in public now that they’ve swapped saliva, it seems. He leans in and whispers, “Are you lonely, Yixing?”

Why is that the pickup line around here? Yixing schools his expression and turns his head back to face him. Their noses brush but neither flinch back and Baekhyun’s hand slows, creeps. “No,” Yixing finally says. “I think I’m just…” The anticipation on Baekhyun’s face is evident and it takes everything within Yixing not to smirk. He pulls away and yawns. “Tired.”

“Tired,” Baekhyun repeats, narrowing his eyes.

Yixing nods sadly. “So sleepy,” he says. “I haven't slept in more than 36 hours probably.” He sighs dramatically. “I should really be going. I have a lot to do tomorrow.”

“You’re serious?”

Yixing likes that Baekhyun doesn't sound put off, just shocked. It’s a good sign. He shrugs. “I’d rather have my wits about me, if you know what I mean. The room is starting to spin.” He moves to the edge of the seat, making to stand up, and Baekhyun grabs the back of his sleeve. He pauses.

“You could always--”

“Hyung!”

Yixing stands up, the hand holding onto his sleeve hesitantly letting him go, and tries not to look disappointed about Sehun’s sudden appearance. He wants to know what Baekhyun was going to say. “Sehun. Everything okay?”

“Can you bring me home?” Sehun whines.

Then Baekhyun is next to Yixing, fleetingly brushing his hand along Yixing’s waist and ass, peering up at Sehun with squinted eyes. Yixing smirks. “Sehunnie always gets whiny when he drinks wine. Who let you drink wine?”

Sehun sighs, petulant. “Minseok hyungie wouldn't pay attention to me. I was bored.”

“What was Minseok hyung doing?” Baekhyun asks with some kind of renewed interest. His hand has pulled enough of Yixing’s shirt from his waistband to push his fingers along the bare skin of Yixing’s back. It feels nice. Yixing subtly pushes into the touch.

“I don't know,” Sehun sighs. “Staring off, zoning out, not listening to anything I said.”

“Hmm…” Baekhyun hums, his eyes darting around the room. Yixing watches understanding dawn on his face but Yixing looks around and doesn't find what Baekhyun does apparently. Minseok is just leaning against a wall and staring at the floor, sipping from a beer. Baekhyun continues, “You could just stay here Sehunnie. There’s plenty of room.”

Long fingers slide down and grope Yixing’s ass. You too, he figures Baekhyun is saying. Yixing bites his lip.

Sehun, however, scoffs. “No. I want to go home and snuggle Vivi.” His dog. Go figure.

“Okay,” Yixing sighs. “I’ll take you home.”

Without even thinking, Yixing starts following Sehun to the door, but is stopped just as quickly.

“Oh Yixing-ssi, your shirt is untucked.” Yixing gets pulled back by a finger hooked in his belt loop and laughs. Baekhyun tucks in the section of shirt he had pulled out himself and hangs onto Yixing’s waistband, pressing close to whisper in his ear, “Are you coming next week?”

Sehun eyes them curiously as Yixing feels his own laugh fill the room. “Now that depends on you, doesn't it?”

He breaks away from Baekhyun’s lingering touch and ruffles Jongdae’s hair on the way out, who looks blissed out with Junmyeon’s lips attached to his neck. Jongdae whines at the interruption and the soft sound of Baekhyun chuckling carries behind Yixing. He glances back and sees Baekhyun following.

Baekhyun grins, cheeky. “I’m just being a gracious host and seeing my guests out.”

“Baekhyun? Gracious host?” Sehun scoffs.

Baekhyun reaches around Yixing to flick Sehun’s arm, who cries out, and Baekhyun merely uses the closeness to press into Yixing again, hands clinging to his hips subtly, hidden enough so Sehun wouldn’t be able to tell if he turned around. Clingy till the end, working so hard to lure Yixing back in.

And then Baekhyun is holding the door open for them, bidding them a poorly concealed, disappointed goodbye. He still slaps Yixing’s ass as he leaves though, and Yixing chuckles when he hears Jongdae shout, “No! Down boy!”

The door closes behind him as Baekhyun laughs.

“Home, hyung,” Sehun murmurs, pulling on Yixing’s arm, toward the elevator.

The elevator is lined with mirrors and only then does Yixing realize how debauched he really looks. His exhaustion shows under his eyes, certainly, but his hair still sticks up in some places it shouldn’t, his pristine black button-up is rumpled, and despite how short the encounter upstairs was, his lips are still reddened, a little swollen from kissing, an interested bulge still prominent at the crotch of his jeans.

It gets him worked up almost, almost convinces him to go back into Baekhyun’s apartment, but that would take the fun out of the game, wouldn’t it?

He eyes Sehun in the mirror and bites his lip.

If they have a quick fuck in the car, well, Baekhyun doesn’t need to know.

Chapter Text

“You seriously have nothing to spill?” Sehun already sounds bored with Yixing’s lack of sharing details over what didn’t happen with Baekhyun at the party on Friday.

Yixing sighs, looking away from Kyungsoo’s email from last night, asking him to drop by later that day. “Don’t you guys have work you should be doing?”

It’s early Monday morning, Yixing has barely sipped his coffee, and Sehun smirks at him from the couch while Jongdae grins from the chair. “Nope,” Jongdae says, too happily too, Yixing thinks. “We’re free for the next hour.”

“You are too,” Sehun cuts in. “We checked your books.”

“I should file a complaint,” Yixing grumbles.

“You’re grumpy,” Jongdae decides, and leans forward to push Yixing’s cup closer to him. “Drink your coffee, please.”

Yixing begrudgingly sips it. “Weren’t you pretty set on keeping me away from Baekhyun on Friday?”

Jongdae’s grin falters into something resembling guilt. He whines. “I’m sorry, hyung! I was a terrible friend, wasn't I? I cockblocked and then ditched you, too. I was just worried. Baekhyun is a bit much I just... I don't know. I was trying to protect you, but I guess… I mean if it’s just one night, it’s whatever, right? Like, work won’t… Okay, what did happen between you two?!”

Sehun snorts. Yixing rolls his eyes. The anti-romance policy. Yixing guesses he should be touched Jongdae was looking out for him, but he’s still fucking Sehun, so what difference should it make? “Why should I tell you anything?” he challenges, though it’s only half-hearted. He could never actually be angry at Jongdae, the near-embodiment of sunshine.

“I know,” Jongdae whines again. “I’m terrible!”

“He asked after you,” Sehun says suddenly, a hint of something in his eyes. Maybe jealousy? Yixing wonders if he should consult Minseok. “He never asks about anyone. Did you cast a spell on him?”

Now it’s Yixing’s turn to snort into his coffee cup. “Yes, I, with my magical dick, cast a spell on your friend.”

“So you did dick him!” Sehun sits up at the “confession.”

“No.”

And then Jongdae says, “No, they didn’t fuck. Baekhyun complained to me the next day, said it was my fault.”

“If you knew they didn’t fuck, Jongdae, why are we begging for details?”

“It wasn’t your fault,” Yixing chuckles. “It was my choice.”

Sehun squints. “You didn’t want to fuck him?”

“I never said that.” Yixing leans back in his chair, thoughtful.

Now Jongdae is squinting, but it’s more suspicious than Sehun, less confusion. “Are you playing with him?”

Yixing sips his coffee.

“I remember how you were in uni, hyung!”

“How was he in uni?” Sehun asks.

Yixing and Jongdae’s eyes meet, and Yixing hopes his blank expression conveys something like please don’t get into it in front of him, because Yixing used to love running in circles purposely with people for months on end, and he stopped playing with Sehun after one go, bored. It seems to work, though, because all Jongdae says is, “Playful.”

“I’m not like that anymore,” Yixing lies.

He continues to evade his friends’ many questions, even if he doesn’t completely know why. Perhaps he doesn't want to jinx it, doesn’t want one of them to go blabbering back to Baekhyun that Yixing is pining after him or something, because he absolutely isn’t. But it takes a good lay to know a good lay--or something--and Yixing just knows Baekhyun will be good, craves something as good as him, after being stuck in mediocre-sex-land with Sehun since Yixing arrived here.

After a half hour of consistent prying, he shoos them away so he can go to Kyungsoo’s office. The trip is uneventful as usual, a long ride on the elevator up to the 18th floor. Kyungsoo’s office is directly to the left, just a few steps away, really, with the CEO’s office just past it at the end of the hall. The opposite end houses a seemingly similar office to Mr. Byun Sr.’s, but Yixing’s never been in it or even in that direction, figures it’s used for storage since he’s never seen anyone at that end.

He’s only been up here a few times, and he always feels awkward, he thinks as he steps off the elevator and veers left. There are always Suits–as he calls them all–up here and Yixing is only ever in his gym attire anymore. They’re always in and out of the CEO’s office, of the office across from Kyungsoo’s, which Yixing eventually learned is the secretary, Jung Soojung. He’d assumed that fell under Kyungsoo’s job description, too, but apparently Kyungsoo’s workload became too much, so instead of lessening it… they hired a secretary.

Today though, the only person Yixing runs into is Chanyeol.

The kid nearly stumbles out of Kyungsoo’s office, red-faced and brows furrowed.

“Chanyeol?” Yixing softly questions, concerned.

Chanyeol starts as if Yixing is a ghost before him, hand flying to his chest. “Holy f-- I mean. Hyung. H-Hey.”

“Hey. Are you okay?”

Wide eyes grow even wider. “W-What? Yeah! Why wouldn’t I be!?”

“Because you’re practically panting.”

“I’m just--” Chanyeol shrugs a little too dramatically and offers a crooked grin. “Running late for my post downstairs. See ya Yixing hyung.”

Chanyeol hurries past him before he can say anything else and Yixing frowns. Chanyeol’s a hugger. Chanyeol usually hugs him when he sees him. He stares at Kyungsoo’s door a moment, wondering just what happened in there. The CEO’s door cracking open jumpstarts him back into action though, and he knocks on Kyungsoo’s door, slipping inside without waiting for an okay.

When he does, Kyungsoo is at the couch, folding a blanket. Yixing frowns again. “Did you sleep here?”

“Yes.”

“Yesterday was Sunday, Kyungsoo.”

Kyungsoo chuckles, though it’s a bit dry. “I’m aware. I had a lot of work to do.”

“God, you weren’t here all weekend, were you?” Yixing sits in the chair in front of the desk, eyeing Kyungsoo’s back worriedly. The guy really does overwork himself.

“No, no.” Kyungsoo turns to him and smiles gently, then. “I slept in on Saturday and everything.”

Yixing narrows his eyes suspiciously, but mostly believes him. “Well then good. You work too hard, Kyungsoo-yah.”

“So informal to your technically boss, Yixing-ssi,” Kyungsoo muses.

“Technically being the keyword.” Yixing grins.

Kyungsoo sits behind his desk, laughing to himself. “I am your boss, you know. Anyway, I guess I could’ve emailed you, but I wanted to check in with you in person. You probably won’t see me much the rest of the week, if at all.”

“Busy?”

“Very,” Kyungsoo sighs. “There’s a big meeting on Friday. The ‘potentially buying out another huge business’ kind of meeting. It’s being hosted here, so many preparations must be made.”

“Ah.” Yixing nods. The business talk isn’t really in his interests, but he’s rather pleased Kyungsoo is being so informal for once. “Sounds… well. Busy.”

Kyungsoo leans his head back against his chair, closing his eyes. “Very,” he repeats, then snaps out of whatever moment he was having and leans forward again. “So, as you know, Kim Jongin starts today. He should be here within the hour. He’ll check in with me first so I can give him his key and credentials, then I’ll bring him down to you. Just show him the ropes and let him shadow you for a couple of days. Your book’s getting kind of heavy with appointments, so assign some of them to him and see how he does.”

“Sir, yes, sir.”

“And for the love of god, keep Oh Sehun away from him.”

~*~

“Oh,” Yixing says, an afterthought, assessing the way Jongin’s shirt hugs his chest and arms, his pretty face and perfectly messy light brown hair. “And be wary of a guy named Oh Sehun.”

He’s just finished showing his new assistant manager the closet they keep their cleaning supplies for the gym equipment, wrapping up their tour and showing of the ropes, so now they're sitting in Yixing’s office while Jongin looks over the appointment book.

Jongin tilts his head. It’s very puppy-like, and gives Chanyeol a run for his money, honestly. “Oh Sehun? I met him already. He seems nice.”

Yixing squints. “Nice…”

“Yeah!” Jongin smiles. “He offered to show me around the place and even invited me to his place for drinks!”

Oh boy. Yixing snorts and claps Jongin on the shoulder. “Just be wary, alright? He’s a good kid and was my first friend here, but he has a thing for dancers.”

Jongin seems to think about that, then after a moment, he lights up with realization. “Oh. Oh, okay. I get it.” He giggles, his cheeks reddening in embarrassment.

“Also if you’re going over to his place, be ready for him to pay more attention to his dog than you.”

“He has a dog?” Jongin’s eyes sparkle with excitement and Yixing chuckles. Maybe Jongin will be just fine.

~*~

The weekend had been one thing; Yixing had allowed himself the luxury of sleeping through most of it, to catch up, but once the work week gets going, he thinks he’ll never see Friday arrive.

It doesn't help either that those he was already friends with–Sehun, Minseok, Jongdae, Chanyeol–seem to gravitate toward him even more now, as if Yixing attending that party had initiated him into their cult or something.

He wonders petulantly if that’s what he’s stepped into. A cult. With a ringleader with a penchant for cashmere and touching what isn't his without hesitation, for making Yixing want to bed him more than he’s wanted anyone in a long time.

“Xing!” Jongdae sticks his head in the doorway of Yixing’s office with a bright smile. “You’re still coming to Baekhyun’s tonight, right?”

Yixing sighs overdramatically. “I mean, I guess I’ll be there.”

Jongdae’s laugh is boisterous. “As if you’re not dying to fall in bed with him. You say you’ve changed, but I know you. You still like to play the same games!”

“That statement was made for Sehunnie’s benefit, you know that.”

“I know. And I’m gonna hold it against you forever!” A maniacal laugh. Yixing rolls his eyes. “Anyway,” his friend continues. “I’ll see you tonight!”

“Hey, Jongdae!” Yixing calls when he disappears. Jongdae’s head slowly peeks back in. “The parties aren’t a cult thing, right?”

“A cult thing?” Jongdae covers a bubbly laugh with his hand.

“You guys aren’t in a cult or something, right? I’m not gonna be sacrificed tonight by sleeping with the evil ringleader?”

A full-on cackle rings in Yixing’s ears and he rolls his eyes. “That sounds about right, doesn’t it?!” Jongdae exclaims as he uses the doorframe to support his body in his mirth.

“I mean, why else would you freak that much about me sleeping with your friend?”

Jongdae whines now. “Yah, you’re going to hold that against me forever, aren’t you?!”

Yixing grins.

~*~

The week had dragged for Yixing, and if the way Baekhyun figuratively clings to him once he finds him at the party is any indication, he would say the time passed similarly for him as well.

Yixing is playing pool against Amber–who really is amazing at it–and he knows his friends are spectating, Sehun, Chanyeol, Minseok, Jongdae, Junmyeon. Jongdae and Sehun cheer him on obnoxiously while Chanyeol throws out random pointers, but it's not until he makes a comment about Yixing’s form that a new voice rings out across the room.

“I think his form is quite nice, if I do say so myself.”

Even if Yixing didn't recognize the voice, Jongdae’s dramatic gagging would be enough to signal who had just joined them. Yixing smirks at the table as Chanyeol innocently says, “Baek, you’re not even that good at pool. You wouldn't know.”

Amber quirks a knowing, pierced brow at Yixing and he sinks one of his three remaining balls into a corner socket before chuckling and shrugging at her. She shakes her head and rolls her eyes but is also laughing, and Yixing decides he really likes her.

Amber wins, when Yixing has only one ball left on the table, and they all cheer and congratulate him anyway because apparently it’s hard to come that close to winning with Amber or Chanyeol.

“I need a drink,” he announces to the room and they all cheer again. “Anyone else want one?”

“I’ll take one,” says Amber. Minseok and Jongdae chime in with, “Me too!”

So Yixing takes their drink preferences, carefully avoiding Baekhyun for the fun of it, and makes to leave the room.

“I’ll help,” is kind of exactly what Yixing was hoping to hear. Now he turns to Baekhyun and smiles. The other man’s eyes fucking twinkle with mischief and excitement and the like. Yixing nearly forgot how attractive he is.

Jongdae groans. “Guess we’re not getting our drinks.”

Yixing looks over Baekhyun’s shoulder and winks. “I’ll be back. Promise.”

He leaves the room without saying anything else, and feels a warm body flank him, a hand slip around his arm. “Avoiding me, Yixing-ssi?”

“Of course not.” Yixing smirks at the path ahead of them. “I was just enjoying the party. Making new friends.”

Baekhyun hums. “I see, I see. Well, how does bringing them their drinks and then joining me on the couch sound?”

“Sounds like something I’d maybe be interested in.”

“Maybe?”

“Maybe.”

~*~

“Jongdae-ah apologized for his behavior last week, you know,” Yixing murmurs. He’s leaned in to speak in Baekhyun’s ear, even though they're already plastered to each other’s sides on the same couch as last week when they met.

They're both facing forward, unabashedly watching the show that is Jongdae and Junmyeon eating each other’s faces. Special couch time, Yixing had recalled, and Baekhyun had laughed and gestured at their friends as if saying, see? I told you! They never used to do this, Baekhyun told him, but suddenly, a couple months back, it was like the couple reentered their honeymoon phase and voila, special couch time.

Baekhyun sticks his bottom lip out, dramatic. “He didn't apologize to me.”

Yixing’s arm is tossed over the back of the couch, and he doesn't know how long his hand has been idly playing with the soft shoulder of Baekhyun’s cashmere sweater of the week. This one is maroon, a good color against his tan skin, and it feels too nice between Yixing’s fingers. He kind of wants to feel it everywhere.

“I guess I’m special,” he responds easily.

Baekhyun’s hand squeezes Yixing’s thigh where it’s been resting as he chuckles, bats his eyelashes at him. “I’ll be the judge of that, I think.”

“Yeah?” Yixing teasingly grazes his lips along the other man’s ear. “Just say when, Baekhyun-ssi.”

This close, Yixing can see where Baekhyun’s eyeliner has crackled at the corners of his waterline from smiling, as their lips brush when they adjust so Baekhyun can speak in his ear now. It’s heady, how much they want each other. And then Baekhyun whispers, “When, Baekhyun-ssi.”

Yixing laughs, but it falters into bated breath when Baekhyun nips at his ear, and he thinks he’ll catch whiplash, with how quickly things go from playful to lustful and back with this guy.

Not that Yixing is complaining.

“Come on,” is whispered then and Yixing can't help the shudder that runs through him. He’s been waiting all week for this. He’s dreamt of this.

Baekhyun uses Yixing’s knee as leverage to stand and moves past him, waiting for Yixing to follow.

Excitement courses through Yixing’s veins. Their foreplay, of watching their friends basically dry hump each other has finally come to an end, and now they ascend the stairs.

Yixing finds himself more observant than he had been before. Last week on these stairs he’d been caught somewhere between tipsy and half-asleep and hadn't taken in his surroundings at all, despite them being on a “tour.” But the most interesting thing he realizes is the decorations. Baekhyun doesn't have family photos or even self-portraits (he seems like the type) posted anywhere; his walls are lined with art, interesting, abstract art that Yixing feels he could get lost in. It’s a very similar comparison to Baekhyun himself, Yixing realizes, and he can't help but wonder if Baekhyun sees himself that way, or if maybe he paid someone to.

“Yixing-ssi?”

Yixing makes a surprised noise of acknowledgment and double-takes his surroundings. They've made it up the stairs and Baekhyun is watching him curiously, just a hint of a smirk on his lips. He latches onto Yixing’s belt loops and starts walking backward, dragging Yixing with him. “You aren't changing your mind, are you? You’re being awfully quiet.”

A mischievous smile forms on Yixing’s face as he presses closer and shakes his head. “Definitely not. Was just admiring the artwork, is all.”

“You mean me or the paintings?”

Their bodies connect as Baekhyun kisses at his neck. Yixing laughs. “Modest as ever, Baekhyun-ssi.”

Hands roam unabashedly and they fall through a door, curious lips turning hungry once Baekhyun locks them inside. Yixing’s blue button-down shirt is hanging open before he can fully process his surroundings. “Nice room,” he pants into Baekhyun’s parted lips. Not that he’s looked around at all.

“Thanks,” Baekhyun says, a hair aggressive as he yanks Yixing’s shirt down his arms. It falls to the floor. “Too bad we didn't finish our tour last week.” A sound of divine approval falls from his mouth, hands eager where they explore Yixing’s abs and chest.

Yixing nips harshly at Baekhyun’s ear, sucks on the skin beneath it, fingers working diligently to undo the other man’s pants. “Doesn't waiting make it so much better?”

“Fucking tease.” The words aren't harsh, but Baekhyun shoves Yixing onto the bed regardless, kicks off his jeans and straddles him with purpose.

Yixing breathes, feels his body fill with adrenaline. An unexpected turn of events like this, he can get used to. He wants to learn what all of Baekhyun’s buttons are, wants to press them all until the man snaps, claims what he’s so sure is his.

Yixing hasn't felt this exhilarated, this in control, in a long time and they've barely even started.

Baekhyun presses forward then and their kisses are filthy, wet and greedy, each trying to take more than they’re giving. Yixing thrives in it, arches into Baekhyun, claws at his back through his sweater and nips at his lips, his chin.

The drag of Baekhyun’s hands is slow, when he pulls Yixing’s arms away from his body, presses them into the mattress, pushes upward until firm fingers are cupping Yixing’s wrists.

Yixing feels his eyes droop with desire and if he wasn't hard before, he definitely is now. He likes bondage in itself, but even more likes when someone unexpected takes initiative. Someone like suave, yet dainty Baekhyun. This plays right into Yixing’s hands, his desires. He can have a lot of fun with this.

Baekhyun’s breath fans hot along Yixing’s ear as he leans down and whispers, “Is this okay?”

“More than okay,” Yixing answers easily, and even makes a show of stretching the rest of his body comfortably beneath the other man. He hooks his legs around Baekhyun’s just right and hitches him closer, pressing their crotches together. “I’d even let you tie me up if you were into that.” He feels Baekhyun’s dick twitch with interest and Baekhyun pulls back to get a good look at him. Yixing can see the hunger, the desire. It’s safe to say… “You are, aren't you?” he asks with a smirk.

Baekhyun’s mouth pulls into a cheshire cat grin and he leans more of his weight forward, putting more pressure on Yixing’s wrists. “Very. Though you’re the first person who’s ever suggested it before me.”

“Yeah?” Yixing catches the edge of his lips in a half-assed kiss. “I think we’ll find we have a lot in common, Baekhyun.”

“I think you may be right.”

They get lost in a flurry of hungrier kisses than before, get so wound up in more unexpected foreplay when Baekhyun starts mouthing at Yixing’s clothed dick before he even finishes taking Yixing’s jeans off, that Yixing forgets about the bondage talk for a moment. He moans almost obscenely. And it's embarrassing, he thinks. Baekhyun's hardly even doing anything but... his mouth is sinful.

A laugh is huffed against Yixing's crotch and he twitches, bites his lip as Baekhyun finally finishes the descent down his legs to remove the godforsaken jeans.

Another breath ghosts up his leg. "God, your legs," Baekhyun murmurs. "What do you do again? Dance?"

"Bingo," Yixing barely manages with Baekhyun nibbling at the inside of his thigh.

"Are dancers as flexible as they say?"

“You mean you’ve never been with one?”

Baekhyun shakes his head, tongues at Yixing’s covered cock again before hooking his hands under Yixing’s knees and pushing forward. He folds him in half, eyes twinkling with delight when Yixing goes easily, and grinds against him.

They moan simultaneously and Yixing slides a hand into Baekhyun’s hair and tugs. “Off with the boxers, Baekhyun-ssi.”

“And let you have all the fun? Hmm... I don't know about that…” With a smirk, Baekhyun climbs off of him and the bed, trotting across the room to a dresser. He digs through a drawer until he procures what he’s looking for.

He carries back a handful of what looks like silk, silk ties to be exact, biting his lip as his eyes scan along Yixing’s body, lingering on the bulge at his crotch. Yixing smirks, stretching his arms above his head for show. He’d bet good money that Baekhyun’s ass feels like heaven.

“How is you taking off your underwear letting me have all the fun?” Yixing finally asks, though he figures Baekhyun has his wicked ways, just as Yixing does, a certain way he thinks things should be run.

Baekhyun just laughs and sits on the edge of the bed. He sets two ties on the bed between them, but there’s still one in his hand, and Yixing can't help but wonder why there’s an extra.

Baekhyun weaves the ties through his headboard first. Yixing leans his head back and watches, taking in said headboard for the first time. It’s abstract, like the art on the walls, with notches and openings scattered all over it. He secures Yixing’s wrists then, with the precision only of someone who has done this many, many times before. It piques Yixing’s interest. Baekhyun is so intriguing.

He tests the restraints. “Did you buy this headboard just for this?”

Baekhyun bites back an amused grin. “Absolutely.”

Yixing’s eyes linger on the extra tie next to his hip then avert back to Baekhyun. “What’s the third one for?”

“Well… you suggested the restraints. I think it’s only fair I get to suggest something, too.”

“Yeah? What would that be?”

A delicate hand covers his right eye and Baekhyun smiles. “I wanna blindfold you.”

Ah, now Yixing gets it. He ponders it for maybe a second, then shrugs. “As long as you don't plan to run off and leave me here. Or you know, aren't a serial killer. Also, no filming. I’d rather not be fired--”

“Does killing people with my good looks and amazing sex count?”

“Cute.”

“I know, thank you.”

Yixing chuckles, then nods his head toward the extra tie. “Go ahead.”

Happily, Baekhyun straddles him again, crawls up to his stomach and leans forward to delicately lift Yixing’s head and wrap the silk around it.

Yixing’s vision goes dark and the fabric is cool against his face, Baekhyun’s breath warm against his lips. “Are you self-conscious, Baekhyun-ssi?”

“What?” Baekhyun laughs. “Absolutely not. Why would you ask me that?”

Humming, Yixing pretends to ponder. “You didn't even let me see your cock, let alone touch it.”

“I like the element of surprise.”

“If you’re suggesting you have a giant dick, I’ll have to object–”

Baekhyun laughs and sits up, done tying the silk around Yixing’s eyes. Hands run reverently up Yixing’s chest, slowing as they ascend his neck, glide over the tie to sink into his hair. “God, you’re beautiful,” Baekhyun observes, tilting Yixing’s head back and dipping down to kiss at his neck. “A work of art.”

“You do like art, then.”

Baekhyun hums into Yixing’s skin affirmatively, and the vibrations send chills down Yixing’s spine.

Baekhyun explores his body thoroughly, an art exhibit on display for him to study inch by excruciating inch. He hums again, and lips graze along Yixing’s stomach; his muscles tense automatically. “What makes you tick, Yixing?” The words are whispered, secretive. Baekhyun’s not talking to Yixing, so Yixing doesn’t answer. He bites his lip and focuses on the tongue licking a stripe up his abdomen, sending fire straight to his already aching groin.

Baekhyun picks up on Yixing’s pleasure immediately, making a pleased sound and doing it again. He crawls up Yixing’s body slowly and drags his tongue along for the ride. A pit stop, a nibble, at one nipple, an enthusiastic bite at the other. Baekhyun takes the skin between his teeth and pulls. Yixing can’t stop the broken moan that escapes him.

“Bingo,” the other man whispers, and giggles. Unbelievable. He hovers completely over Yixing’s body now. “Mmm, so you like being bitten,” Baekhyun observes, the lilt in his voice giving away his smile. Yixing can picture the glint of his pretty white teeth and wishes he could see them. Yixing nods, moaning a little, in response. Teeth nibble on the lobe of his ear before Baekhyun whispers, “Do you like biting, too?”

Yixing turns to him, running his nose along what he thinks is Baekhyun’s cheek, parted lips dragging with intent. “Biting, licking, kissing,” Yixing murmurs, feeling suddenly rambly. “Love marking up pretty skin with my mouth.”

Baekhyun kisses him then, long and hard and biting. They nip at each other’s lips almost animalistically, noses bumping roughly, but neither of them seem to care.

And then Baekhyun is pulling away, panting, “So do it.” He scoots farther upward until there’s an expanse of skin resting against Yixing’s lips. “My neck is sensitive like yours. Mark up my pretty skin with your mouth, Yixing.”

Yixing huffs out a breath and feels Baekhyun twitch above him; he’s just as sensitive there as Yixing is. And then he grazes his lips along the skin provided to him, his nose, trying to get a feel for exactly what he’s working with.

He feels the dip, the junction of Baekhyun’s neck and shoulder, and runs his tongue along it fleetingly before following a line down and focusing on a spot just above Baekhyun’s pretty collarbone. Yixing nips playfully at it, kisses it, sucks on it. His fists clench as Baekhyun’s breath hitches because god-fucking-dammit, Yixing wants to touch him, wants to twist Baekhyun’s hair up in his fingers and press them into his skin, knead his ass.

Yixing’s next bite is sharper and Baekhyun jolts but doesn't stop him, whimpers but presses closer and ruts against Yixing’s hip. Yixing does it again, in perfect time with a thrust, and Baekhyun moans, tugging at Yixing’s hair for leverage.

Yixing laves his tongue along the undoubtedly bright red skin, sucks gently on it, then bites him even harder. Baekhyun cries out, loud, and Yixing unwittingly tugs at his restraints, feeling pre-come drip from his length. “Wh-Where are you?” he whispers breathlessly, kissing Baekhyun’s desecrated skin as if he’s even remotely sorry.

Baekhyun responds immediately, leveling their faces again. “R-Right here,” he murmurs, sounding wrecked, and kisses the fucking life out of him.

It’s frantic, then. Harsh, as Baekhyun bites his way down Yixing’s body, leaving bruises in his wake while Yixing gasps for breath and moans praises about Baekhyun’s pretty mouth and how good he’s doing. And Baekhyun makes these little sounds every time Yixing says something, these pleased little groans that tell Yixing just how much he probably gets off on it.

And finally, Baekhyun hooks his fingers in the waistband of Yixing’s underwear and tugs them off. He stays gone for a second, but the hurried rustling around him suggests that Baekhyun is removing his remaining clothes, procuring lube and a condom, probably.

Baekhyun swears as he climbs back over Yixing, and Yixing’s breath hitches almost painfully when a tongue licks up the length of his cock. “Baekhyun,” he breathes. He’s still wearing the goddamn sweater. But Yixing would be remiss to think it doesn't feel good as hell against his skin.

Baekhyun licks him again and wraps his long fingers around him. “Even your dick is pretty. How unfair.”

“We can't all be blessed,” Yixing huffs, squirming as Baekhyun bites at his thighs again, strokes his length.

Moaning lowly, Yixing spreads his legs as Baekhyun laps at his balls, noses at the curls at the base of his cock. “My dick isn't ugly,” Baekhyun says belatedly, a hint of mirth present.

“Well you won't let me see it so--”

A hearty laugh surrounds him, but muffles itself as Baekhyun wraps his lips around the head of his length.

“God, your mouth.” It’s something Yixing could easily become addicted to.

Baekhyun just hums and sucks and Yixing grieves over not being able to sink his fingers in the other man’s hair and press him further down.

Yixing can't stop the sounds that leave him, the breathy moans of Baekhyun’s name, the pressure of the silk digging into his wrists as he pulls relentlessly at them.

Baekhyun curses again as he pulls off. “I’d really love to properly blow you,” he says breathlessly. “But if we don't fuck soon I might implode.”

The unmistakable sound of lube being opened follows while Yixing pants out, “Yeah. Yeah,” in agreement, and he squirms restlessly, flexing his fingers. He wants to sink them into Baekhyun, to scissor him open until he’s begging for Yixing’s cock. Hell, Yixing would settle for watching Baekhyun finger himself. This is torture.

But then a slick finger slips between Yixing’s butt cheeks and finds his rim and Yixing jolts from the unexpectedness of it.

“Wait.” If Yixing’s hands were free he’d grab Baekhyun’s wrist. “Y-You want to fuck me?” The question comes out more incredulous than he means it to, even if that is really how he feels.

“God yes,” Baekhyun nearly whispers. He attaches his lips to the junction where Yixing’s thigh meets his hip and very gently strokes Yixing’s rim, like he knows that they've suddenly hit a crossroad but he still just needs to touch.

Yixing squirms under the ministrations, breathless and uncertain. He wanted this guy to ride his dick, thought that’s where they were headed. He--

Baekhyun ghosts back up his body, still somehow wrapped up in the moment even though Yixing feels like he’s at an impasse. Baekhyun whispers against his mouth, “When’s the last time you were fucked, Yixing?”

It’s been a while. It’s not that Yixing is unfamiliar with it, or even dislikes it–he and Lu Han used to switch places pretty often–but toward the end of his stay in China, when his mom got sick, when she actually passed, Yixing needed to feel like he had control of something. That something was his late nights with Lu Han. And he never enjoyed being fucked as much as he enjoyed doing the fucking anyway. Yixing sighs. “Been a while. I do the fucking.”

“Mm, but so do I.” Baekhyun kisses down to his neck, sucks on his shoulder, clearly unbothered by this dilemma, like he knows Yixing will cave. Maybe Yixing knows it, too. Lips whisper in his ear, “I promise I’ll make it good for you, Yixing.” Fingers tweak his nipple.

“I’m not so sure that’s a promise you can keep,” Yixing challenges. He’s being a hair childish, maybe, but maybe if Baekhyun snaps and just takes him, there won't be any room for Yixing’s uncertainties.

A hand yanks his head back by the hair, teeth graze almost possessively at his neck. “You won't know until you find out for yourself, will you?” Baekhyun says. “Take it or leave it. I don't let people fuck me.”

It’s not a hard decision by any means, really. But he pretends to be put off for the sake of his pride. “You better make it damn good.”

Baekhyun presses closer and speaks into his ear one more time. “Or what?” Yixing feels his lips curve into a smile.

“Fuck me or untie me, Baekhyun-ssi.”

They both know Baekhyun’s choice.

It’s fairly quick work, opening Yixing up. He’d somehow forgotten how foreign it can feel to have fingers in his ass, but Baekhyun effectively distracts him from the discomfort, leaving marks all over his hips, kitten licks to his cock, and his fingers are long and adept, just like Yixing figured, finding Yixing’s prostate almost too easily.

By the time Baekhyun is fucking three fingers into him, Yixing is writhing and actually begging for Baekhyun’s cock, which is… an unexpected turn of events to say the least.

Baekhyun is smug, clearly, chuckling through his breathlessness as he rips the foil packet of a condom open.

But Yixing can feel that Baekhyun’s hands are shaking with anticipation as they plant against his hips for leverage when he slowly pushes the head of his cock through Yixing’s rim. And Yixing knows he’s feeling everything more intensely because of the blindfold, but Baekhyun is just as desperate as he is. It’s gratifying.

“Good, good, keep going,” Yixing insists when Baekhyun slows down. He doesn’t want slow, he wants Baekhyun to show him what he’s made of.

Baekhyun squirms once their hips meet. “You feel so good, fuck.” He dips down and sucks one of Yixing’s nipples between his lips while Yixing breathes himself through the stretch. It’s not that bad; Baekhyun’s not much wider than what his three fingers felt like, but this is Yixing’s least favorite part in general about being fucked, waiting for the stretch to take. He thinks it’s unfortunate that his interest in pain doesn’t extend past biting, usually.

“Fuck,” Yixing nearly whines. “Fuck me, just fuck me.”

Baekhyun doesn’t need to be told twice. He thrusts shallowly, once, twice. Yixing is just about to scold him for taking it too easy on him when Baekhyun’s hands slide up his chest until he has a tight grip on his shoulders, and he rams their hips together, punching a guttural groan from Yixing’s lungs. He does it again. And again. “Yes,” Yixing encourages. “Yes.”

Soon enough, Yixing’s body is slick with sweat, made all the hotter by the fucking cashmere sweater Baekhyun never took off, and he thinks his head is permanently pressed back into the pillow as he takes everything Baekhyun gives him, lying there all but helplessly to the overwhelming pleasure. He’s much more experienced than Lu Han was, Yixing realizes, that or Yixing’s tastes have changed because they’re not even done and this is the best sex Yixing has had in a while, maybe ever. He doesn’t know, he can’t even think straight.

“Is it good, Yixing?” Baekhyun whispers, seductive and probably reading his mind; it wouldn’t surprise Yixing at this point. “How good is it when you have no idea just what I’m going to do next?”

His tongue flicks against Yixing’s lips, licks between them until Yixing is fighting back. The kiss lacks finesse and drips in obscenity, and Baekhyun never stops snapping his hips. He pushes himself up to his elbows, thrusts harder, and Yixing sees stars. “R-Right there, fuck, right there– don't stop–”

Baekhyun doesn’t. “How. Good. Is it.”

“Fuck,” Yixing cries. His wrists pull at the restraints as his back arches and his heels dig into Baekhyun’s tailbone. “It’d be even better if-if you’d stop talking and f-fuck me harder.”

The body atop his hisses and shifts and fingers pinch his nipples pitilessly, drawing a shout from him.

Baekhyun doesn't hold back then. He grabs the back of Yixing’s knees and shoves them against the bed, folds him in half just like before. Yixing is fully pinned now, can’t move but to arch his back painfully and thrash his head around as Baekhyun pounds relentlessly into him, takes him without remorse, just as Yixing wanted.

Baekhyun thrusts particularly hard and Yixing keens. He’s close, he’s so close to the edge. Baekhyun must be, too, because he frees Yixing’s legs and surges forward suddenly for kisses, hard and sloppy, harsh nips, claims. Baekhyun’s hand wraps around Yixing’s dick and Yixing tastes blood, knows it’s Baekhyun’s because Yixing didn't feel his own lip split in the fray.

Yixing comes harder than he has in a really, really long time, with his legs squeezing Baekhyun’s waist, his cock wrapped in Baekhyun’s perfect hand, and his bottom lip between Baekhyun’s teeth.

Yixing's moans are muffled and his chest heaves desperately for breath as Baekhyun grinds into him, prods his prostate purposely over and over again until there are tears in Yixing’s eyes. “Baek- Baekhy–”

Baekhyun gets the idea, easing up, pulling away from him a bit and just plain old fucking him again, fast and shallow, Baekhyun’s melodic moans filling the room carelessly, beautifully, while Yixing struggles to hold on to coherency. “G-Good,” he manages. “I bet y-you look so good right now– oh fuck–” A tongue drags up his chest, collecting come, and again, and then that come-slick tongue is in his mouth and Yixing moans because fuck Baekhyun is so unexpectedly hot in every fucking way.

Baekhyun comes that way, with a hand sunk in Yixing’s hair as they share the taste of Yixing’s come, buried as deep inside him as possible.

Yixing thinks he’ll feel the vibrations of Baekhyun’s moans deep in his throat for days.

“Ffff–” Baekhyun collapses on top of Yixing, panting against his neck.

Twitching with the sensitivity, Yixing laughs. “Fuck?”

“Mmph.”

Yixing chuckles again and makes to wrap his arms comfortingly around Baekhyun, only to remember his restraints. He huffs. He’s ready to have his hands back now.

After a moment of recovery, Baekhyun finally props himself back up and weakly removes Yixing’s blindfold.

Yixing blinks, bleary, light-sensitive, and it takes a moment for his focus to adjust on Baekhyun’s face.

Baekhyun looks wrecked in the best way; his hair is a sweat-soaked mess, his eyes drooping, sated, cheeks flushed a deep pink, eyeliner smudged under his eyes and blood smudged on his lip.

God. And Yixing thought Sehun was perfect. Sehun doesn't even like to sweat during sex, let alone get this wrecked.

Baekhyun smiles crookedly at him, drunkenly, and reaches forward to carefully undo the ties holding Yixing’s wrists in place one-handed. “Easy,” he mumbles, surprisingly caring, as he helps Yixing slowly bring his arms back down.

The pain, for a moment, is almost unbearable. He had pulled at his restraints way too much, strained his muscles way too harshly. Baekhyun coos at him encouragingly and kisses along each arm.

Yixing gets past the arm pain enough to sink all ten of his fingers into Baekhyun’s wet hair and kiss him thoroughly enough to lick Baekhyun’s lip clean and Baekhyun moans, mumbling something like “should be gross… you’re so hot…” in between kisses.

Eventually though, Baekhyun pulls out of Yixing, disposes of his condom, and fetches a towel and two bottles of water.

He folds his legs comfortably underneath him as Yixing sits up too, and cleans up everything he didn't get with his tongue before. Then Baekhyun tosses the towel aside and opens a bottle of water, handing it to Yixing.

“Mm, thank you,” Yixing nods and takes a sip, and Baekhyun tugs on his free hand and starts massaging his wrist. Yixing hums, content. “You don't have to do that.”

Baekhyun grins. “You seem to like it.”

“Well it does feel nice.”

“So I’ll continue.” Baekhyun winks. “They’re gonna bruise. You kept pulling so hard at the ties.”

“Mm,” Yixing agrees. “Wanted to touch.”

“You’re the one who wanted to be tied up, remember?”

“Nobody’s perfect.” Then, “You’ve got come on your sweater.”

“I was trying to leave it on for you. You like it.”

“I’m flattered. Don’t you have another one?”

Baekhyun laughs. It’s loud and hearty and pulls a grin to Yixing’s face. “I have plenty. Should I change?”

Yixing plays nonchalant. “Only if you want to.”

Baekhyun changes into a new sweater.

This one’s an olive green color and softer than the last. Yixing knows because the first thing he does when Baekhyun reaches the bed again is curl his hands in the fabric and pull him down into a languid kiss, because why not?

“Mmm… I’m so glad you like kissing,” Baekhyun murmurs, straddling his hips and pressing their lips together again. “No one ever likes kissing.” He ruts their flaccid cocks together gently, rocks lazily. They’re both too spent to get anywhere again, Yixing thinks, but it feels good, carefree, and their pleased hums mingle together nicely amongst their tongues.

Baekhyun sits back on his feet. “How do you feel about cuddling?”

Yixing laughs. How unexpected. “I live for it.”

“Perfect.”

As if it was an open invitation (it was), Baekhyun slides down into place next to Yixing. He doesn't move in for the kill yet, seemingly content to admire Yixing for a moment, instead. His hand rubs little circles into Yixing’s upper arm, where his muscles had strained the most, and Yixing reaches over to run a finger along Baekhyun’s collarbone, over the bruise he left.

“You’ve never been bitten like that before, have you?” Yixing doesn’t know how he reached this assumption, only that there was something inherently innocent in the way Baekhyun had reacted. Yixing admires the aggressively visible mark on Baekhyun’s neck, which is rapidly purpling with spiderwebs of blood-red lines spreading across it. Yixing busted a blood vessel. He presses one finger harder into the mark and Baekhyun hisses and curls into him, stopping both of their ministrations.

“No. Never really been into it. Besides, not many people I invite into my bed are open and willing to experiment.” Baekhyun snorts softly and works his face into Yixing’s neck like a kitten. “I asked Chanyeol to bite me once, because I wanted to know what it felt like. He nearly took a chunk out of my shoulder. It was decidedly not sexy.”

“Chanyeol?!” Yixing stifles his laugh with the hand not mindlessly stroking Baekhyun’s hair.

Baekhyun’s breath tickles Yixing’s collar as he laughs, too. “Don’t sound so scandalized!” Then he hums, and the vibration of it blooms warmth along Yixing’s skin as he curls his hand into the soft fabric of Baekhyun’s sweater again. He hasn’t cuddled with someone like this in so long; he’s missed it. “You, though,” Baekhyun murmurs. “That was hot. Or maybe it’s just that you’re hot, I don't know.”

“A little bit of both, I’m sure,” Yixing teases and Baekhyun giggles cutely in response, working skin between his teeth until Yixing shudders. He giggles again. “How’s your lip?” Yixing asks as he pinches Baekhyun’s side in retaliation.

“Yah!” Baekhyun laughs and jerks away, only to snuggle right back into Yixing’s warmth. “Fine. Stings. I’m almost positive I did it to myself, actually.”

Yixing snorts. “Pretty sure we were sharing lips by that point anyway.”

“Mm…” Baekhyun picks his head up and it’s clear he wants another kiss. Yixing obliges easily. “Want your lips,” Baekhyun mumbles into them. He sounds sleepy now, almost incoherent, like the exertion of their vigorous sex is finally settling into his bones.

“We should do this again sometime, yeah?” Yixing suggests, suddenly feeling just as lost in Baekhyun’s mouth as Baekhyun is in his. He’d hate to never fuck Baekhyun again. Yixing’s never met someone he’s so sexually compatible with.

“Definitely,” Baekhyun agrees. Kiss, kiss, kiss. “And normally I don't mean that when someone suggests it but goddammit you’re a good lay.” Kiss, kiss, kiss. “Please come to the party next week.”

“Yeah. Okay.”

When they finally stop kissing, Baekhyun settles back down, and after only a few minutes of Yixing petting his hair, he’s fast asleep.

Yixing gives him a little while to settle into a deeper sleep, too comfortable to get up just yet anyway, and then carefully slips from Baekhyun’s grasp and hunts down his clothes.

He covers Baekhyun with a blanket, and he goes home.

He’ll definitely be back next week.

Chapter Text

“Sorry I fell asleep on you last week,” Baekhyun mumbles into Yixing’s neck, the wet drag of his tongue between his lips sending a chill down Yixing’s spine. “Really wanted another round, but.” He untucks Yixing’s shirt and starts unbuttoning it. “Long day and all that.”

“Consider us even, then.” Yixing tangles his fingers in Baekhyun’s hair and shoves him downward. “For being too tired that first night.”

Baekhyun smirks into Yixing’s bare stomach, trapped between him and the door, sinking to his knees and getting to work on Yixing’s pants. “You mean for playing a game with me.”

Yixing’s shirt is hanging open like last time, abandoned, and his pants and underwear are yanked down to his ankles. He bites his lip as he stares down at the man on his knees, blinking up at him innocently, as if he isn’t wrapping a firm hand around the base of Yixing’s flaccid cock and parting his pretty pink lips. “I don’t know what you’re talking about.”

“Mm…” Baekhyun licks the underside of Yixing’s cock languidly and Yixing braces himself with one hand on the door. Baekhyun smirks again, predatory. “It’s okay. I like playing games.”

He doesn’t give Yixing a chance to respond, taking Yixing’s dick in his mouth all at once, one easy slide until Baekhyun’s lips meet his fingers and he sucks, pulling a long moan from deep in Yixing’s chest, cock stiffening in Baekhyun’s mouth.

Yixing had been waiting for this, hoped they would find the time for this tonight. He’d practically dreamt about it all week, using the brief memory of Baekhyun’s mouth around him their first night to fuel full-blown fantasies.

He couldn't stop thinking about Baekhyun, no matter how fucking hard he tried. Not like it always happens in movies; Yixing didn't develop magical I wanna be with you forever feelings overnight, and he doesn't feel them now with Baekhyun’s tongue digging into the slit of his cock, but the rich man had still wormed his way into every lull in Yixing’s days, taking over his mind and filling it with dirty whispers and sharp teeth, soft cashmere and the feeling of being fucked thoroughly and mercilessly.

It didn't help that the bruises didn't completely fade until yesterday. A constant reminder of the way Baekhyun circled his wrists, forced him to wear sweatbands to work to cover the evidence. (“...I don't wanna know,” Jongdae had said when he saw him on Monday, eyeing the bands suspiciously.) Plus there was the pretty trail down his torso every time he looked at himself in the mirror in the mornings and evenings that never failed to dredge up the phantom feeling of Baekhyun’s teeth against his skin.

Yixing only really knows he’s developed a problem when he gets so worked up in his office one day he has to go lock himself in the gym showers and rub one out, biting down on his arm until it stings to muffle his uncontrollable moans.

So yeah, Yixing hasn't had good sex in a while.

With a pleased hum, Baekhyun digs his nails into Yixing’s hip and sucks again, and again, harder each time, lapping at Yixing’s length like a starved puppy, hand twisting around the base and following his mouth as he pulls off to breathe properly, hand pumping Yixing into full-hardness.

Yixing tightens his grip on strands of Baekhyun’s hair and pulls his head back. Baekhyun looks fucking debauched already; cheeks flushed, pupils blown, lips swollen. “God,” Yixing moans, hips rolling a little into Baekhyun’s grip, wanting something to fuck. “You fucking love cock, don’t you, Baekhyun?”

Baekhyun licks his lips and blinks drunkenly up at him. “I certainly do.” And then he’s taking Yixing’s length down his throat.

Yixing cries out, squeezing Baekhyun’s hair probably painfully, but Baekhyun is too busy relaxing his throat to notice, it seems. Or he likes it as much as Yixing does.

“Baekhyun,” falls from Yixing’s mouth as a soft moan and Baekhyun swallows. “Fuck.”

With an amused hum, Baekhyun flicks his gaze up at Yixing. Yixing doesn't think he’s ever seen someone look so good with a mouth full of cock. But the thought is forgotten when Baekhyun pushes at Yixing’s hip, then pulls it back again, staring up at him pointedly.

“Oh,” Yixing says. “You want me to fuck your mouth.” Yixing doesn't know how he contains his utter glee over the thought.

Baekhyun winks.

“Tap out when you need to.”

Baekhyun squeezes his hip reassuringly, and Yixing slowly slides his dick down Baekhyun’s throat. Baekhyun’s fingers clench tighter the further Yixing slides, nostrils flaring, cheeks reddening, but by the time Yixing actually starts thrusting, Baekhyun's eyelids flutter as if he’s thoroughly enjoying it.

“Your fucking mouth,” Yixing breathes, and jolts when fingers suddenly start fondling his balls. He can't stop the excessive moan that leaves him. He won't last long like this.

But Baekhyun taps his hip after a moment and Yixing relents immediately. Baekhyun gasps for breath and wipes his mouth with the back of his hand, staring up at Yixing like he’s his next meal.

Unable to stop himself, Yixing tightens his grip and pulls Baekhyun up by the hair, presses him into the door and kisses his parted lips frantically, Baekhyun lapping into his mouth as if he’s starving for it.

But then Baekhyun spins Yixing suddenly, and it’s disorienting, his life in Baekhyun’s hands because his ankles are still trapped in his lowered pants and boxers and he can’t catch his balance. His back slams into the door and no time is wasted as his shirt is stripped off his arms; Baekhyun’s teeth scrape his shoulder, his collarbone, and Yixing moans breathlessly just before hands circle his wrists and pull them between their bodies.

The teeth continue their relentless assault on Yixing’s skin and he knows it’s a distraction, somehow, but he’s too busy trying to catch his breath and regain control of the situation when the soft fabric of silk touches his wrists. The top of Baekhyun’s head presses into Yixing’s chest as he watches his own work, binds Yixing’s wrists together with the silk tie he pulled from seemingly nowhere. They’re probably planted around the room, he thinks, bewildered, it was probably on the fucking doorknob. Or maybe in Baekhyun’s pocket.

“You’re not even going to ask my permission?” Yixing pants, because he needs to say something.

Baekhyun stands up straight again and stares hotly into his eyes. His pupils are blown and one glance down shows his dick is straining against his jeans. “You’re not actually objecting, are you?”

Shit, he sounds sexy with a well-fucked throat. “No,” Yixing reasons, smirking. “It’s just cute how you think you’re in control here.”

He’s reaching, is what he’s doing, because he likes to think he calls the shots, but Baekhyun is being more assertive than expected tonight, and Yixing is desperate enough to have control that he’ll talk his way into whatever Baekhyun was going to do anyway.

But it works, because Baekhyun’s nostrils flare and he sinks to his knees and helps Yixing, albeit not gently, out of his shoes, pants, and underwear. And then he yanks him by his bound wrists toward the bed and shoves him down to sit on the edge of it, standing between Yixing’s spread legs and tugging his head back by the hair so they're looking at one another.

“Take off your clothes, Baekhyun,” Yixing says, voice sultry. “All of them. I want to see you.”

“Are you asking me to strip for you?” A hint of mirth seeps into Baekhyun’s lust as he smirks.

“No.” Yixing shoves him away. “I’m telling you to.”

Baekhyun licks his lips like he’s already anticipating it, doesn't even have to think about it. Yixing tries not to let it go to his head when the other man doesn't bite back at all.

It’s unreasonably sexy, Yixing thinks, the slow way Baekhyun sheds his clothes, puts on a show. The inch by inch of legs that are revealed just out of reach of Yixing’s bound hands as he lowers his jeans, lush thighs just begging Yixing to sink his teeth into them, ass just begging to be eaten.

The silence should probably be awkward, but Yixing can't bring himself to care; blood is rushing in his ears anyway, his heart pounding so loud certainly Baekhyun can hear, but he’s so turned on it aches, and bites his lip as Baekhyun finally, finally lifts his navy blue sweater over his head.

Yixing kicks a leg out, hooks it around one of Baekhyun’s and draws him in, hands grazing appreciatively up his stomach, kissing his chest, sucking his nipple. Baekhyun hums, wanton, and sinks his fingers into Yixing’s hair.

Baekhyun isn't toned, like Sehun, Jongdae, or Yixing. He has curves, a delicious curvy waist that has been hiding under cashmere since they met, a firm yet pliable belly that suggests Baekhyun probably never works out, but never sits still either.

God, Yixing wants to explore Baekhyun’s body properly with his hands and mouth, wants to worship the ground he walks on, really, but maybe that’s just the lust talking.

“You didn't even let me finish,” Baekhyun sighs, clearly enjoying the attention. He is still in his boxer briefs. They look like they're one size too small and damp with pre-come when Yixing glances down, before returning his teeth to Baekhyun’s nipple.

“I want to touch you,” he mumbles. “I need to touch you.”

“Later. You can touch me all you want after this.”

Yixing drops his tied hands to brush Baekhyun’s crotch, fingers stroking as far between the other man’s legs as he can get. Baekhyun’s hips jolt and Yixing gazes up at him through his eyelashes. “Promise?”

“God yes,” Baekhyun breathes. He drags his thumb along Yixing’s bottom lip before dropping down to kiss him filthily.

But eventually, Yixing shoves him away again. “Be a good boy and finish undressing, Baekhyun-ssi.” Baekhyun’s eyes ignite and Yixing tucks away the information for later.

But he doesn’t watch Baekhyun, as much as he may want to. Instead, he stands and assesses the bed, how he wants to go about things tonight. He chuckles when he sees two silk ties looped securely through the headboard in what looks an awful lot like handholds. Baekhyun definitely planned ahead.

“We should establish a safe word, Yixing.”

An eyebrow quirked, Yixing easily answers. “Teddy bear.”

Baekhyun snorts but doesn’t comment.

Yixing climbs onto the bed, walking on his knees until he’s facing the headboard and close enough to reach forward and grasp at the loops created just for him. He arches his back attractively, his butt in the air as an offering, and is pleased to hear Baekhyun choke.

And so they begin.

“You’re too much,” Baekhyun murmurs into his back once he’s fucking three fingers into Yixing, long fingers stroking his prostate too precisely. “You’re going to kill me.”

“Better--” Yixing gasps. “Better make the most of this then, h-huh?”

Baekhyun bites his buttcheek in retaliation and by the time his cock is sunk deep inside him, Yixing’s arms are aching and they’re both moaning so loudly he’s positive they can be heard downstairs at the party.

Bite marks sting all over Yixing’s back and his aching cock slaps his stomach with every thrust he meets. He gasps, chest burning with the breath he can't catch and the fact that Baekhyun knows he’s continuously hitting Yixing’s prostate and not stopping.

“Touch me, touch me,” Yixing demands.

“Not yet.”

The careful precision doesn't stop, through Yixing crying out over and over, through Yixing begging, through Baekhyun telling him just hold on. No, it doesn't stop until Baekhyun comes, slumps from his upright position, out of Yixing, and rests his forehead on Yixing’s lower back, hot breaths puffing quick.

“B-Baekhyun--” Yixing can't stop pleading. He needs to come, too. He needs to be touched.

A hand reaches around his body, wraps slowly around his cock, pumps once, twice. Yixing moans. It’s guttural; he needed to be touched so badly. Just a few more…

Baekhyun’s hand runs up Yixing’s spine as he picks his head up and sucks on the place his breath had been. He pumps once more, twice more.

Yixing feels his muscles tighten all over with the anticipation of release, feels the delicious burn begin to build in his gut. “Yes,” he cries. He’s so close, he’s almost there--

Baekhyun pulls back completely.

“Don’t move,” he says, voice sickeningly sweet.

Fuck.

Yixing listens as Baekhyun disposes of his condom. “Baekhyun,” he growls in his best warning tone.

Baekhyun giggles. “Just give me a sec.”

And then Baekhyun is maneuvering himself to lie under Yixing, slipping his legs between Yixing’s spread knees, sweat-damp hair billowing out on the pillow around his head. His cheeks are still flushed prettily. And he’s smug. Too smug.

Yixing sneers. “What are you doing?”

“Having fun,” Baekhyun answers simply, grin cheeky. “Isn't that what games are for?”

Dread sits heavy in Yixing’s gut, though it’s quickly replaced with pleasure when Baekhyun wraps his hand around his length again. Isn’t that what games are for? It’s going to be a long night.

It’s terribly unfair that Yixing put himself in this literal position, and that Baekhyun found the opportunity to take advantage of it, because it’s not like Yixing feels a need to listen to Baekhyun’s constant demands of don’t move or don’t let go; he literally can’t let go for fear of completely crushing Baekhyun and bruising his stupidly pretty face.

So his arms fucking hurt and Baekhyun won’t let him come and overall Yixing just wants to simultaneously punch a wall and fuck the nearest space small enough for his dick.

Which of course is currently Baekhyun’s hand. Again.

He doesn't know why he lets himself fall for it again--Yixing’s been denied release at least four times now--but he’s so desperate to come, he loses track of reality, rolls his hips into Baekhyun’s grip consistently, eyes squeezed shut as his head hangs limp between his arms, throat bobbing as it pushes out soft, frenzied sighs.

Baekhyun clicks his tongue. “You are a picture like this.”

Fingers brush through Yixing’s hair and he jerks at the touch, opening his eyes. Sweat burns them as his hips stutter on their own, fire blazing within him--

Baekhyun lets go.

“Fuck!” Yixing cries out, and actual tears of frustration well up as the pleasure slips away from him once again, fading into a not-so-dull ache in his groin. “Fuck you.”

Baekhyun merely grins. “You wish.”

Yixing really, really does.

“It’s only fair that I get you back,” Baekhyun says, trailing a finger along Yixing’s abs. “Yixing-ssi likes playing with his food. Why can't the food play back?”

Yixing grunts, “Don't think it usually works like that.”

“Oh, but it must, you see. Equilibrium and all that.”

“B-Big word for a rich boy.”

Baekhyun digs his nails into Yixing’s skin and drags. Yixing hisses. “Insulting the guy in charge of whether you come or not, Yixing?”

“I wouldn’t say you’re in charge,” Yixing grits out.

“Oh?” Gentle fingers graze along his cock, drawing another hiss from him.

“I could just let go and crush you,” he says. “Test your reflexes.”

A laugh. “My reflexes are just fine.”

“You’re trapped.”

“Not the worst way to go.” Baekhyun smirks, smug, up at him, thumbing at Yixing’s nipple now. “Your arms sure are shaking.”

“Hurt.”

“Should’ve chosen a better position, show off.”

“You talk too fucking much.”

“Yeah?” Baekhyun props himself up on his elbows, scrapes his teeth along Yixing’s chin. “Wanna shut me up, then?”

Yixing thinks he imagines it when Baekhyun scoots farther down--he’s gotta be delirious at this point, right? Dehydrated probably, too--but then there’s hot breath fanning along his length as his knees are forced more apart by Baekhyun’s hips, and lips wrap around his head.

Yixing bucks, he can’t help it, and Baekhyun grunts, murmuring, “I should’ve expected that,” before getting back in place, sucking on the head of Yixing’s cock like a fucking lollipop.

It’s leisurely, for Baekhyun, humming contently as if he’s sunning on a beach and not completely torturing Yixing, pushing him to his limits until there are no straws left to break. “Baekhyun,” Yixing cries. “Baekhyun, please--”

Right at the edge, closer than he’d gotten any of the other times, Baekhyun pulls off with an obscene pop of his lips. “Hmmm?” he inquires lazily. “Oh, I’m sorry. Did you want to come, Yixing-ssi?” He noses at Yixing’s cock almost reverently while Yixing tries to figure out if it’s sweat or tears dripping onto the bedsheets from his face. The gentle graze of skin is enough to keep Yixing alight with arousal, on edge, but not enough to push him over it. “Yixing-ssi,” Baekhyun sing-songs. “I’m waiting.”

“Fuck. Fucking let me come, Baekhyun, before I fucking explode--”

All at once, a hand fondles Yixing’s balls, and a tongue licks a slow, thorough stripe up his dick. The second Baekhyun’s tongue dips into his slit, Yixing is coming with a shout, euphoria washing over him in thick waves.

But there’s no help. Baekhyun keeps his hands to himself, and his nose practically planted in the curls next to the base of Yixing’s spasming cock, but Yixing needs help. Relief. So he ruts. His hips jerk and he gets the friction he needs from what feels like Baekhyun’s cheek, his jaw, and Baekhyun wants it, moving his face away a little so that Yixing can reach more of it, practically fucking his cheeks, the crook of his neck. It’s filthy and desperate, and the second Baekhyun somehow catches him with his lips, lets Yixing jerkily fuck his mouth, swallowing down the last couple spurts of come, Yixing knows he’s working himself into oversensitivity. He sags, every bit of his weight falling to his knees and arms, and Baekhyun’s humming again, slipping off of him with one last lick.

Yixing whimpers as Baekhyun settles back below him, and he tries to blink through the blurriness in his eyes because the least he deserves is to see how filthy Baekhyun must look.

He would groan if he wasn’t so breathless; come drips from Baekhyun’s lip, streaks down his collarbone, into his hair. His cheeks shine, wet, eyeliner smudged toward his temple.

“Fuck,” Yixing nearly coughs. “I fucking h-hate you right now but you look-- s-so goddamn good.”

“The curse of being me,” Baekhyun says, and it kind of sounds like he’s choking, so Yixing feels at least a little gratified, for that to have affected him. But before he can snark, Baekhyun is reaching up and taking hold of his wrists, supporting the weight of them, so Yixing eases his fingers from the silk loops of the headboard and lets himself crumple atop Baekhyun, led so that his arms cage the other man’s head and his face falls against his neck.

“Ow,” he says, trying now to get off of his knees without disturbing the upper half of his body.

Baekhyun chuckles, and one of his hands starts gently stroking up and down Yixing’s spine. “Arms?”

“Mmrgh.”

“Knees?”

“Mmrgh!”

Laughing, Baekhyun nods, squirms some, but otherwise doesn’t make to push Yixing off of him, who is… more than likely crushing him. Asshole deserves it, Yixing thinks halfheartedly, maybe a little too fondly, and he’d be remiss to think Baekhyun’s hand isn’t the most soothing thing he’s felt in days.

He doesn’t know how long they stay like that, but the slower Baekhyun’s hand gets, as if he’s falling asleep, the more Yixing is lulled into a sense of security. It’s intimate, he realizes, possibly too much so, so he props himself up and is met with a lazy, half-asleep grin. “You gonna clean me up, Yixing-ssi?”

“Aren’t you supposed to do it?” Yixing grumbles, but he’s already sucking the come from Baekhyun’s lip, biting down on it just to draw a gasp from him.

He leans down and licks Baekhyun’s collarbone clean, too, but his arms start to give under his weight, so he weakly rolls away from Baekhyun, instead of finishing up.

His back rejoices when it hits the mattress, while his arms and knees scream at him for spending too much time straining them. He holds his wrists toward Baekhyun, who easily takes the hint and unties them. Yixing groans, rubbing his wrists down as Baekhyun sits up. “Let me go clean up a little, then I’ll help you, ‘kay?”

~*~

“How often do you tie people up?” Yixing asks with a smirk. He’s on his side, head propped on his hand as he watches Baekhyun, a picture of perfection thumbing a silk tie amongst the fingers of one hand and drinking from a glass of champagne with the other. The soft sheets are pulled up over his waist modestly but Yixing is under them too and has full access to touch as he pleases.

He reaches out for a handful of thigh and kneads it appreciatively. His body still aches and begs him for sleep, but he remembers that promise of getting to touch Baekhyun all he wants much too clearly.

Baekhyun hums. “As often as they let me.” He throws a cheeky grin down at Yixing. His legs spread a little and Yixing’s hand dives deeper between them, the warmth and the supple skin all but intoxicating. “You’d be surprised how many people are willing to try it. I think it’s the one thing everyone with a decent sex life has considered before.”

“Yeah?” Yixing says by way of pretending he’s still invested in the conversation. He’s instead plotting the easiest transition to end up with his face buried between the thighs he can't stop groping right now.

“Mm-hmm…” Baekhyun downs the rest of his glass and sets it down, closing his eyes and resting his head back against the wall. “Most surprising?”

Yixing slinks farther down on the bed and Baekhyun’s legs spread wider. “Hmm?”

“Junmyeon hyung.”

“You’ve fucked your best friend?”

“You haven't?” Baekhyun peeks one eye open and grins mischievously, and, okay, Yixing supposes he has, considering he and Luhan fucked for years. “He came so hard he cried. All four limbs tied up. Jongdae and I treated him well.”

Yixing pauses. Briefly. “I’ll find time to be shocked by this revelation later, but right now I’m trying to sneak between your legs.”

“I know. You’re taking forever, Yixing. I’m getting old over here.”

“Then lay down, rich boy.”

“Well since you asked so nicely.”

Yixing chuckles and waits until Baekhyun’s body is flat before he pounces. He drops kisses down Baekhyun's stomach while Baekhyun makes himself comfortable, folding his arms under the pillow below his head, smirking as Yixing disappears beneath the sheets.

As Yixing noses at Baekhyun’s balls, as his tongue slips inside him, the softest moan crying out somewhere above the covers, he thinks how easily they've gotten used to each other, how easily Baekhyun is becoming familiar.

But as long as neither of them grow attached, it’ll all be fine.

~*~

Unknown: jongdae-yah gave me your phone number. i think it’s only fair you have mine ;)

~*~

Having each other’s phone numbers proves to be… interesting, to say the least.

Yixing doesn’t really expect much to come of it; they fucked a couple of times, and Baekhyun’s reputation makes it clear that he’s a one (two?) night stand kind of guy. But they do get along well, and could be great friends, so there is that.

And then Baekhyun asks him to come over on Tuesday night.

The penthouse seems much, much bigger without people shuffling about, chatting and laughing and drinking. It’s eerie, almost, but Baekhyun starts taking his shirt off, right there at the front door, and Yixing forgets all about it, letting himself be tied up and bent over the couch instead.

The following Friday proceeds as the last one did, with Baekhyun dragging Yixing upstairs as soon as he lays eyes on him, barely giving him a chance to say hello.

Next Tuesday’s invitation comes in the form of a dick pic.

Yixing chokes when he sees it, them, because there are two, technically, both mouth-watering shots of Baekhyun’s bare legs spread out in front of him, one ankle casually crossed over the other while he holds his dick in one of his pretty hands, a gray cashmere sweater just barely visible in the first one. The second picture illustrates him holding his erect cock again, but this time with the end of his sweater wrapped around it, a soft barrier that probably feels so good. Yixing actually moans out loud just imagining it, also bewildered that the second picture affected him so much more than the first.

(He actually wonders for a moment if Baekhyun has been lowkey conditioning him to be turned on by cashmere sweaters, but he thinks it’s just Baekhyun.)

It becomes a familiar cycle. Friday, party. Tuesday, sext invitation. The second one is a truly delectable picture of Baekhyun’s ass (Yixing saves it.)

“So this makes us, er, fuck-buddies, right?” Yixing asks one evening as he stretches his limbs like a cat.

“Fuck… buddies…?”

Yixing chuckles, shrugs. “We’ve fucked multiple times now, and you summon me on a whim now.”

“Summon you.” Baekhyun is smirking now, amused. At least he doesn't look put-off.

Humming, Yixing nuzzles his cheek against the pillow, shutting his eyes. Baekhyun’s bed is so unfairly comfortable, feeling like it came straight from heaven itself. He practically purrs when fingers start brushing through his hair absentmindedly, as if he really is a cat. “Hmm. I don't know, Baekhyun.” He yawns. “I always prefer having a fuck-buddy anyway. Eliminates the stress of finding a one night stand when you’re in need.”

“I guess you’re right…” Baekhyun clearly ponders it.

Yixing sighs. “I know it’s not your style, so we can stop if you want.” He really, really hopes Baekhyun doesn't want to stop.

“You’ve done this before?”

“Yep. I had a few in college, honestly, but then after that I just had Luhan. He was one of my closest friends and we were a pretty good match.” Not as good as you and I are though. “It’s not like it’s a commitment, or like we couldn't fuck other people, but it’s nice to have someone like that when you need them.”

Baekhyun’s fingers keep stroking through Yixing’s hair. “What if one of us gets attached?”

“Then we end it.” Yixing shrugs easily. He doesn’t mention that he was maybe, kind of in love with Luhan, but he likes to think of that as more of a lifelong development than a result of their friends-with-benefits relationship.

Baekhyun chuckles. “And make it awkward?”

Yixing just shrugs again. “It doesn't have to be awkward. Feelings are natural, especially when sex is involved. But I’ve never gotten romantically attached to any of my past partners, if that tells you anything.”

Baekhyun assesses him, Yixing can feel the heat of his curious stare. “I guess it would make things a bit easier.”

“Mmm, a bit.”

~*~

Yixing never spends the night, although not much can be said for the times they're at it until the early morning hours. More than once Yixing has found himself fighting sleep in the morning rush hour, limbs throbbing with fresh aches and bruises, too tender still to sit properly.

Luckily they come to some kind of silent agreement to play harder at the weekend parties only, taking Tuesdays to just let out some stress. There's still bondage though. Always bondage. Yixing wonders if they'll ever have sex without his hands tied. It’s hot, and he’s into it, but he also likes the idea of running his hands along Baekhyun’s curves while he’s buried deep inside him.

But still, sometimes they get carried away.

They have a particularly long Tuesday night for no good reason other than Baekhyun being exceptionally more horny than usual. They've been dancing this tango for weeks now, using Tuesdays to fuck on various surfaces throughout the penthouse, and this time it was the pool table in the game room, with all four of Yixing’s limbs tied to it. It was the first time Yixing had his legs tied down too, and he felt utterly used in the best way.

But the hard surface equaled more aches than usual, which resulted in them relocating to the bedroom and Baekhyun sitting on Yixing’s thighs to give him a thorough massage, which resulted in Baekhyun slipping his fingers back inside Yixing to give his prostate a thorough massage. It easily turned into the strangest sex they've had, with Yixing almost asleep and so sated he could barely move but to grip the sheets, moans under his breath sounding more like canine whimpers as Baekhyun fucked him hard and precise. Yixing’s orgasm with his dick trapped between himself and the sheets relaxed him so much further, he promptly... fell asleep.

And it was the weirdest feeling, he thinks, being fucked while you’re asleep, because Yixing could still feel Baekhyun’s cock thrusting in and out of him, but any sounds Baekhyun made were muffled as if Yixing was underwater, and time slurred together and skipped so one moment he was being fucked relentlessly, another Baekhyun was still, moaning and coming, and another Yixing was blinking awake to find himself rolled onto his back with Baekhyun straddling his hips now, rubbing a wet, lukewarm washcloth along his chest and stomach. Morning, sunshine. The usual teasing lilt to Baekhyun’s voice had been laced with uncertainty, but all Yixing could manage for a moment was to pet Baekhyun’s thigh and slur, Tht ‘as diffrent.

Baekhyun had laughed then, clearly surprised, and kissed his chin, suggesting a shower when Yixing was up for it.

It just turned into round three. Bruising makeouts as they pushed each other into the walls, slipping and trying not to fall as Baekhyun climbed Yixing like a tree and begged to be touched.

By the time Yixing left, he had three hours to get home, and then get to work.

He’s dead on his feet, a fucking zombie, face planted on his desk when someone quietly knocks on the frame of his office’s open doorway.

“Hhm?” Yixing slowly picks his head up, blinking his eyes open with great effort. When they adjust and focus, he sees one of the girls who works at the coffeeshop down the hall. “Ah… Eunha?”

She smiles. “Yixing-ssi. Good morning. Er…” Awkwardly, she holds a cup out in front of her. “Delivery?”

“Delivery?”

“Yes…” She giggles. “Here.” She sets the cup on the desk. “I have to get back quickly now. Enjoy your coffee!”

Yixing barely gets the words thank you out before she’s gone. He stares at the coffee cup curiously. Why would a coffee be delivered to him? Is it a new service? But he doesn't get free coffee…

The smell of the coffee hits him, cutting off every possible thought in his head until he’s downed half of it. The heat of it alone perks him up a little, nearly burning his throat but he can't bring himself to care. It’s not his usual coffee, Americano with vanilla and caramel, but it’s good. Tastes like cinnamon.

He sighs happily and sets the cup down. Only when he folds over to scratch an itch on his ankle does he catch sight of the note written on the sleeve of the coffee cup. Curiously, he turns it to face him.

Morning, sunshine.

There’s a drawing under it that looks distinctly like a silk tie.

Yixing blinks. What--

“Yah, hyung, you look like death!”

Yixing startles at Jongdae’s sudden presence, automatically pulling his coffee cup toward himself protectively, though he’s not totally sure why. “Good morning to you, too,” he says dryly.

Cackling, Jongdae plops down on Yixing’s office couch. “Did you sleep at all last night?” he asks. “You might need to borrow some of Baekhyun’s concealer before you start scaring everyone away with your black eyes!”

At the mention of Baekhyun, Yixing cradles his cup even closer. “I resent that. Respect your elders.”

Jongdae waves a dismissive hand. “Why didn't you sleep?”

Yixing grunts.

“Was that zombie speak for Baekhyun?”

Yixing sips his coffee and shrugs.

“How often do you see each other anyway? I think you broke him. With your dick.”

“What’s that supposed to mean?” Yixing snorts, but catches himself glancing down at the note on his coffee. Morning, sunshine. “And I don’t know, Dae. Twice a week, I guess.” Sometimes thrice. Last week it was definitely three times.

“So weird. Never thought I’d see Baekhyun’s ways converted to Yixing’s and Luhan’s ways.”

“What can I say? I’m irresistible.”

“That, you are, buddy. I’d bang ya.”

“Thanks, Dae.”

“Anytime, Xing.”

~*~

Yixing plops onto his back and closes his eyes, panting and sated.

Sehun stretches out next to him before curling into Yixing’s side; he’s learned to love cuddling since Yixing met him, thankfully. “Mmm, thanks hyung,” he mumbles, sounding thoroughly fucked out.

Yixing pats his neck as a response, removing the condom from his own dick and disposing of it in the trashcan next to his bed before snuggling into Sehun’s warmth.

Yixing would be lying if he said he didn’t try to meet with Sehun at least once a week still to fuck out his pent up frustration over being unable to stick his dick in Baekhyun. A part of him feels bad for using Sehun, but another part of him knows it’s exactly what Baekhyun is doing to him and stops caring for some reason.

“Sleep now, hyung?” Sehun slurs into his neck.

“Sleep now, Sehunnie.”

It’s later, when they’ve woken up from their nap and are lounging on Yixing’s couch in nothing but their sweatpants that Sehun surprises him.

“Hyung, can we talk?” he asks.

Yixing nods. “Sure, Sehunnie. What’s up?”

“We need to break up.”

Choking on his beer, Yixing tries not to laugh. “What?”

“I think we both know it’s time, hyung.”

“Sehun, we weren't together--”

Sehun waves a hand dismissively. “Semantics.”

Yixing nods, adopting a faux serious expression. “What brought you to this decision?”

“Well.” Sehun sighs, wistful. “You’re always busy with Baekhyun hyung, and in the lonely meantime, I set my sights on someone new, you see.”

“Oh?”

Sehun nods.

“Are you going to tell me who he is?”

“I didn't want to make this harder for you, hyung--”

Yixing laughs. “Just tell me, idiot.”

Sehun rolls his eyes. “Alright. It’s Jongin.”

“Jongin…”

“Yes hyung. You know, Kim Jongin that works for you?”

Now Yixing rolls his eyes. “No, never heard of him. Anyway, isn't he straight?”

“Why would you say that?”

“Doesn't he have a girlfriend?” Yixing squints, trying to remember. He distinctly remembers Jongin talking about a girl to him one day. Although maybe it was his sister… Does Jongin have a sister? Yixing sheepishly realizes it was the day after one of his Tuesdays with Baekhyun and he was too busy thinking about all of the marks he left all over Baekhyun’s ass with his teeth, wanting him to feel Yixing every time he sat down the next day.

Sehun shoves him, though it’s playful. “Don't assume he’s straight just because he might have a girlfriend, hyung.”

“Okay, point. But if he does have a girlfriend, that does mean he’s unavailable, Sehunnie.”

“Maybe I could convince them to accept me into a poly relationship.”

Yixing giggles and leans his head against the other man’s shoulder. “People don't just casually enter polyamorous relationships, you know.”

Sehun huffs, but rests his head against Yixing’s. “How would you know? And anyway, why aren't you supporting me? I thought we were best friends, Xing-ah!”

Giggling again, Yixing shakes his head. “I believe in you, Sehunnie. You deserve to find someone who loves you!”

“Who said anything about love.” Sehun sniffs. “Maybe I just want him to fuck me.”

“Everyone needs love.”

“Then what about you?”

Yixing doesn't know how to answer that.

~*~

yixing: Weather’s pretty rough. Party still on?

Yixing pretends it’s not something he could have just asked Jongdae when he hits send, before shooting off a quick ”stfu luhan” response to Luhan’s ”so ur gettin that good good dick huh?”

Chuckling, Yixing puffs hot breath into his hands. It’s much colder in the SM lobby than it is elsewhere in the building, with the doors constantly being used. Chanyeol looks miserable behind his desk.

“Holding up okay, kid?” Yixing calls over to him, chuckling. He hadn’t meant to start calling Chanyeol “kid” to his face, but once he started, he couldn’t stop. Chanyeol is pretty fond of it though, seemingly. Always beaming and responding with “hyung.”

Except now. “No,” Chanyeol says gruffly.

Yixing stifles a laugh. “You’re not getting sick, are you Chanyeollie?”

“Don’t say that!” Chanyeol promptly wipes at his pink nose. His ears are equally pink. Poor kid. “God, I hope not. I really hope not.”

“Why?” Yixing tilts his head. “Got a date tonight?”

That gets Chanyeol flailing. “No!” He glances around frantically, eyes wide. He coughs. “I mean. No. A date? Ha ha ha…”

Yixing cocks an eyebrow.

“Anyway, you’re going to be sick if you don’t get away from the freaking door!” Chanyeol deflects. “Come over here. I have a little space heater.”

Yixing snorts but walks over anyway, though he doesn’t bother rounding the desk like Chanyeol insists, leaning over it instead. “It’s not so cold,” he says.

Chanyeol’s expression morphs into something utterly affronted. “Yixing, it’s freezing!”

“Well I’m not denying that it’s cold, Chanyeollie, but honestly by this time it’s usually already colder in China. This is a welcome change.”

As if on cue, Chanyeol shivers. “Well I hate the cold. My ears feel like they’re about to fall off.”

Yixing pats his head sympathetically. “I’ll buy you some earmuffs. Stylish, professional earmuffs.”

A voice rings out from near the elevators just as Chanyeol rolls his eyes. “Do they make earmuffs big enough for Chanyeol’s ears?” Jongdae muses.

Chanyeol playfully glares in their friend’s direction, tugging at his earlobes. Yixing pats his head again. “Don’t be mean, Jongdae-yah. His ears are cute.”

Stepping outside a few moments later, Yixing almost retracts his statement about the cold. It is pretty frigid out, and seems to be growing moreso by the minute.

“Are you sure you don't want me to just take the bus, hyung?” Jongdae asks for the millionth time that day. Yixing levels him with a glare and he laughs. “Alright, alright. I just feel bad! The roads are probably icy now.”

“It’ll be fine,” Yixing ensures, just as sleet begins to rain down on them.

“Yah~,” Jongdae whines. “You really shouldn't be driving so much in this!”

From the heart of Seoul to drop Jongdae off in Cheongdam, back to Yixing’s place in the outskirts of Yangcheon, and all the way back to Apgujeong for Baekhyun’s party if he still plans on having it. Jongdae’s probably right. Yixing glances around them as the trek on the sidewalk starts coming to an end, the entrance to the parking garage next door within their reach. The food delivery scooters may be taking it slow in the icy weather, but focusing on the nearby highways is enough indication that Seoul drivers are not being cautious.

But Jongdae shouldn't have to take the bus. Yixing shrugs and repeats, “It’ll be fine.”

They’re at a stoplight a few blocks away from the SM building when Yixing mindlessly checks his phone.

baekhyun: of course! your entry isn't free though, yixing-ssi.
you have to play a game with me ;)
baekhyun: also the roads are icy. be careful!

“What are you smiling at?” Jongdae’s voices rings in Yixing’s ears, startling him.

“I wasn't smiling.”

“You were!”

“Was not.”

“Were too!”

“You’ve gone blind, dongsaeng.”

“Shut up and go, Yixing. The light’s green.”

On cue, honking starts behind them so he does.

A moment of silence passes, then, “So why were you smiling?”

Yixing snorts. “Drop it, Jongdae-yah. You didn't see anything.”

“Hmph.” Jongdae slumps in his seat only to spring right back up. “Hey, why don't you just hang around my place until Baek’s party, yeah? That’d save you so much driving time. You could even crash there after the party if you want.”

“I-- Well, I don't have my clothes, though.”

“Oh. You could borrow something of mine or Jun’s? If you want.”

Merging onto the highway at that specific moment makes Yixing’s mind up immediately, as the sleet picks up and cars consistently swerve into other lanes or straddle the lines with no warning. “Sure,” he says quickly. “Uh, yeah, let’s do that.”

Only once Yixing is in the shelter of the warmth that is Jongdae and Junmyeon’s home, cozy on the couch with Jongdae’s head in his lap, does Yixing respond to the text messages on his phone.

yixing: As long as we’re playing dirty, Baekhyun-ssi.
baekhyun: i didn't realize there was another option?
yixing: Name your rules, then.

~*~

The rules aren't complex.

Mingle at the party. Whoever breaks first and bolts for the bedroom loses.

Loses what, Yixing isn't sure. They've played a dozen of these games by now and the only clear prize is each other and an extra dose of pride.

Yixing loves it.

“Chanyeollie!” Yixing exclaims, approaching him, Yoona, and Amber when he walks in with Jongdae and Junmyeon. “What are you doing here? I thought you had a date!”

Chanyeol chokes on his own spit, wide eyes nearly bulging. “Yixing hyung! Stop trying to embarrass me! I d-don’t have a date!”

Yixing tilts his head, frowning. “Did it get cancelled? You’re very easy to read, so I know you were at least supposed to have a date.”

Meanwhile, everyone around them is cooing. Yoona plays with Chanyeol’s hair. “Chanyeollie~” she sings. “Our baby Chanyeollie on a date. How sweet.”

“Yixiiiing,” Chanyeol whines. Yixing grins and reaches up to ruffle the kid’s hair.

Bringing his arm back down gives him his first glimpse of Baekhyun for the evening, just a few yards behind Chanyeol.

And goddamn, what a sight he is.

He went all out for their game, clearly. His hair is a little lighter, just crossing the line between brunette and blonde and perfectly messy, as if he ran his fingers through it and tugged just the way Yixing likes to. His eyes are lined with kohl and this brown, almost red eyeshadow that makes his blue eyes appear icy in color. His cheeks are flushed as if he’s been drinking generously, and god his lips look even pinker than usual, even more inviting.

Yixing can’t stop drinking in the sight of him, the collarbones that are exposed by a beige cashmere sweater that’s way too big for him, his thighs hugged by jeans so tight Yixing is sure it leaves nothing to the imagination if you could see his ass and crotch under the sweater hanging loosely around them. Yixing swallows and Baekhyun meets his eyes, smiling brightly, eyes gleaming, and wiggling his pretty fingers in a wave.

Yixing’s mouth goes dry just as someone places their hand on his shoulder, startling him. “Huh?” He turns to see Junmyeon next to him.

The man chuckles. “Stay strong, yeah?”

“Easier said than done,” Yixing grumbles, leaning into Junmyeon’s space, who puts his arm fully around Yixing’s shoulders to support him.

“He does put up a good fight, doesn’t he?” Junmyeon sounds reverent. “He told me all about your little game.” Yixing watches as Baekhyun’s hand wraps around Heechul’s arm, bracing himself as he laughs shamelessly. “But it’ll be easy for you to beat him, I bet.”

“Hmm.” Yixing nods. “I have a plan.”

“Yeah?”

“What does Baekhyun crave more than anything?”

Junmyeon considers. “I’m assuming you want the PG answer to that.” Yixing laughs and nudges closer into Junmyeon’s side, nodding. Baekhyun watches them now, eyes just barely squinting. “Then it’s easy. Attention.”

“Exactly.”

“So how are you going to use that to your advantage?”

Yixing grins, poking Junmyeon in the chest. “By not giving him any.”

Junmyeon laughs loud and open, then. He nods. “As Baekhyun’s best friend, I approve of this plan.”

Jongdae drags them back into the discussion of Chanyeol’s maybe-date, and the night begins.

~*~

Baekhyun does put up a good fight, Yixing can’t argue with that. Many times, Yixing has come close to breaking, because Baekhyun stays within sight but never within reach, flaunting his hands and his mouth constantly, any time he thinks Yixing may be so much as glancing in his direction.

He tugs at his ear while he grins at something Amber says to him, fingers the fading bruise on his neck that Yixing himself left there, rubs his neck slowly, reaches up to brush back a strand of Yoona’s hair, plucks a chocolate from a nearby bowl and makes a scene of licking his fingers clean.

But Yixing’s game face is at its best. He doesn’t outwardly react to the man at all, except for, well, his dick starting to strain at the crotch of the jeans he borrowed from Junmyeon.

He bites his lip and focuses on Minseok next to him. “Did you hear about Sehunnie and me?”

Minseok snorts. “What? Did he propose?”

Rolling his eyes, Yixing elbows him. “Quite the opposite. We broke up.”

“Wait, what?” Minseok’s brows climb his forehead, but he chuckles nonetheless. “Broke up, huh? Did you take it easy on him?”

“What?” Yixing tilts his head. “He ended it, not me!” He laughs. “I figured you talked to him or something. Plus he has a crush on someone.”

“Wow. No, no I actually didn’t. Huh…”

“Or maybe he just doesn’t like sharing,” Yixing suggests. His eyes fall on Baekhyun of their own accord.

“Makes sense.” Minseok chuckles, though it’s distant, his eyes searching the room. “Sharing is so underrated, though.”

Yixing hums. “I have to agree with you there. It’s a shame, really. I wanted to keep him.”

“Really? I thought he was boring you.”

“Well, maybe a little. But it was nice being able to--”

“Hyungs~” a deep voice calls out from behind them.

Long arms wrap their way around Yixing’s neck from behind, Sehun’s, and Chanyeol appears in front of them, clumsy on his feet.

“You’re both wasted,” Yixing observes with a sigh, because Chanyeol stumbles into Minseok just as Sehun starts pressing wet kisses to Yixing’s neck. Yixing isn’t too proud to admit that he stretches his neck to the side as an offering, letting Sehun suck on his skin, because Baekhyun is watching. Baekhyun is gaping.

“Mmm, le’s not break up,” Sehun slurs. “You’re so hot.”

Sehun’s arms relocate to around Yixing’s waist, mouth wet and hot on Yixing’s neck. It feels too good, the attention to his skin, his body set ablaze by lust and pleasure because now Sehun is shamelessly cupping Yixing’s crotch out in the open, in perfect view of Baekhyun. Yixing couldn’t have planned it better himself.

Perhaps he’ll find time to be embarrassed by it later, but god it’s intoxicating, being surrounded by another body this way, being well taken care of, being fondled, in public, where anyone can look and see, even though somehow no one is yet.

Except for Baekhyun.

Baekhyun who can’t stop staring, Baekhyun who is flushed red as a fucking apple, Baekhyun who is storming over to them right now...

“I need to talk to you,” he snaps, wrapping a hand around Yixing’s wrist and yanking him from Sehun’s grasp.

“Baekhyun~ hyung-ah~, are y’okay?” Chanyeol slurs over Minseok’s shoulder, somehow still a concerned puppy as ever.

“Fan-fucking-tastic.”

“Y’sure-?”

Yixing hides his smirk against his shoulder as he looks back at their group and shrugs. Minseok is gently grasping onto Chanyeol’s arm and saying, “Let them go.” Sehun grasps onto them now, seemingly trying to kiss on Chanyeol’s neck. Chanyeol shrieks and falls over.

Yixing lets himself be pulled upstairs, snickering to himself all the while. Baekhyun tightens his grip on his wrist. It starts to hurt and Yixing likes where this is going.

Baekhyun shoves him against the door, pins his wrists to it. Yixing’s blood rushes south and he glances around the hallway; they haven't even made it inside the bedroom yet. “Eager?” he teases.

“I thought we were playing a game!” Baekhyun accuses.

Yixing admires him, a fiery little thing when he’s angry, all red-faced and clenched jaw and dark eyes. “We were.”

“Really? Because it looked like you weren't doing a fucking thing to make me break first!”

“You mean, this isn't you breaking first?”

The realization on Baekhyun’s face is absolutely priceless. Yixing smirks, but Baekhyun is suddenly determined. “No. I’m fucking mad at you with your perfect fucking dancer body and your stupidly sexy smirking and your complete indifference to me practically begging for your attention and you give it to Sehun! Oh Sehun-!”

A crash, things being knocked down, sounds from the bathroom down the hall and Baekhyun grunts angrily, freeing one of Yixing’s wrists to open his door until they fall inside.

Yixing takes advantage of the change, grabs Baekhyun’s wrist and wrangles him against the door. He pins only the one wrist because Baekhyun hasn't fully let go of him yet. “Does this feel like indifference to you?” Yixing breathes into Baekhyun’s ear, pressing their crotches together.

Baekhyun’s answering moan is soft, but desperate. He lets go of Yixing’s wrist and lets himself be fully pinned to the door. “I played,” Yixing whispers seductively, the grind of their hips harsh. “And I won.”

“A-Asshole.”

Yixing restrains himself. Baekhyun is so pliant, so willing to be manhandled. It would be so easy to toss him on the bed, fuck him senseless. Yixing is dying to be buried inside Baekhyun’s perfect ass. Dying. But he won't cave yet; he’ll let Baekhyun continue to think he’s in charge for the sake of this game. “If you don't like the way I play, Baekhyun…” Yixing nips at his ear sharply. “Then punish me.”

Baekhyun shoves him onto the bed.

Chapter Text

Yixing waits for things to change, for the ball to drop, for Baekhyun to become less exciting with time, but he doesn’t.

And really, maybe Yixing tries not to think about it, because if he thinks about it, he thinks about the Yixing of the past, who would be bored to death of bottoming for nearly two months now (especially now that Sehun has “dumped him”) and of being tied up every single time, because variety is the spice of life or whatever, right?

But he’s not bored. Yixing just wants more. Because Baekhyun somehow always makes it The Best Sex He’s Ever Had even with the consistencies. Yixing even, if he's had a particularly long day, offers up his own hands sometimes, instead of making Baekhyun wrangle them together.

Of course, there are the nights he’s feeling feisty and makes Baekhyun fight for it; they end up rolling around, wrestling amongst the sheets. They get more bruises than progress and it’s probably like something right out of some masculine homoerotic fantasy, but the gratification Yixing feels when he manages to pin Baekhyun to the bed and render him helpless for a moment always makes it worth it. And Baekhyun is always so fucking pliant when it happens, like he’s unconsciously handing himself over, exposing his neck like a wolf. Yixing always takes the bait, nips and licks his way up from Baekhyun’s neck to his lips, hands slowly relinquishing their hold, caressing the soft skin of Baekhyun’s arms as he falls head first into the other man’s control. Baekhyun used to take over immediately, scared of losing his opportunity, but after dancing the same dance for weeks on end, Baekhyun lets the moment linger now, shivers under Yixing’s suddenly gentle hands, rakes his fingers through Yixing’s hair, scratches up Yixing’s back.

Yixing shivers in his desk chair. Okay, so he’s thinking about it.

Why isn't he bored? What makes Baekhyun so special?

His thumb is gently stroking the handwritten i love cinnamon. mmm. on his coffee cup sleeve when a hand waves in front of his face, startling him.

“Minseok hyung,” Yixing nearly gasps. “How long have you been standing there?”

“...Long enough to wonder how long you and that coffee have been dating.” Minseok peers down at him from the other side of the desk with squinted eyes, gaze flicking down to the cup in question.

Yixing’s eyes widen and he cradles it closer, hiding the note and the minute drawing of a smiling cat emoticon. He hasn’t told anyone about the coffees Baekhyun has been sending him. Up to three times a week now. Monday. Wednesday. Friday. They haven’t really talked about it, not past a do you like my coffees? and Yixing gutturally groaning out an affirmation as Baekhyun had sucked his dick into his mouth.

Yixing laughs now, hoping he doesn’t sound too fake. “I’ve been meaning to tell you guys about our relationship.” He mentally slaps himself, the unintended double meaning not falling short of his attention, and if the way Minseok’s gaze sharpens is any indication, it doesn’t fall short of his attention either.

But luckily, he plays along. “Oh?” He chuckles and takes a seat. “How interesting. I knew you loved your coffee but this is next level stuff.”

Yixing chuckles and shrugs and feels like he’s starting to sweat. Honestly, Zhang, you’re overreacting. “What brings you to my office?”

“Ah. Well Jongdae needed me to play messenger. He has to cancel his appointment with you today, and also needed to tell you that Kyungsoo wants to see you at 11:30. Some kind of chaos is happening in the higher level advertising department, so Jongdae is running around like a chicken with his head cut off, basically, filling in where Kyungsoo can’t.”

“Mm,” Yixing sips his coffee. “Sounds complicated.”

Minseok rolls his eyes. “Unnecessarily complicated, honestly. People like to stir trouble up there…”

Yixing wonders if Baekhyun is part of the apparent chaos. He said he works in advertising, right? Yixing isn’t one-hundred percent sure; anytime Yixing makes a mention of work, Baekhyun changes the subject. But it doesn’t really matter; they’re not spending their time together wasting away over work. Baekhyun probably looks good in a suit, though, but Yixing will always prefer him naked--

“Yixing.”

Yixing startles. Again. He smiles sheepishly at Minseok’s quirked brow, only just realizing that Minseok had still been talking. “Oops. Sorry, hyung.”

“What’s got you so distracted anyway?” Minseok asks after waving a hand in dismissal.

Shaking his head, Yixing shrugs. “Don’t know. Guess the coffee hasn’t kicked in yet. Hard for me to focus.”

Minseok hums and narrows his eyes curiously.

By the time Yixing makes it to Kyungsoo’s office, it looks like the COO has been put through the ringer. His hair is standing on end, his face in his hands. He doesn’t even react when Yixing walks in.

Yixing frowns and doesn’t hesitate to round the desk and pull Kyungsoo’s desk chair away from his desk.

“What the-!”

“Let’s go get lunch, yeah?”

Kyungsoo sighs. “Yixing.”

“And clear your schedule tomorrow. You should take Saturdays off. We can have drinks at my place.”

“Yix--”

“I won’t take no for an answer.”

~*~

Kyungsoo was mostly silent, when Yixing took him out for lunch, so when he comes over the next night, Yixing is determined to make him talk, for his own sake. Kyungsoo doesn’t seem to have many friends. Or maybe just no time for them.

“So what’s going on, Soo?” Yixing asks as they settle comfortably on the couch, beers in hand and some action movie on the television screen.

“What?”

Yixing glares at him and leans over to nudge him with his elbow. “Talk to me, okay? I’ve never seen you so stressed like you were yesterday. Talking about it might help.”

With a sigh, Kyungsoo actually nods and leans his head against the back of the couch. “Somebody leaked one of our most important upcoming contracts to our only major competitor. They took it, altered it, made it better, and stole our new client.”

“You’re kidding me, right?” Yixing asks with mild disgust. Business politics can go to hell.

“I wish,” the other man mumbles. “It’s been complete chaos since we found out. I feel like I’ve been running in every direction trying to fix it. God, I feel like it’s my fault.”

“Did you leak the contract?”

Kyungsoo blanches. “Of course not!”

“Then it’s not your fault, Kyungsoo-yah.”

“It’s not that simple with Byun involved.”

Yixing frowns. “Is Mr. Byun Sr. giving you that much trouble?”

“I don't mind Mr. Byun Sr. It’s the Byun kid I don't like. He’s fucking awful.”

Yixing snorts and takes a swig of beer. “You’re not the first person I’ve heard that from, you know. People talk, in the gym. He must be pretty bad.”

Kyungsoo shakes his head. “A lazy, ungrateful brat.”

Yixing lets Kyungsoo rant as much as he wants, going on about the leak and the pressure being put on Kyungsoo’s shoulders. Yixing feels bad for him, and thinks if Kyungsoo were any of his other friends, he’d cuddle him to make him feel better, but… well, Kyungsoo doesn’t seem the cuddling type.

Silence falls between them before Kyungsoo takes a long drag of his beer and squints at something Yixing can’t see. “For someone who is trying so hard to get me to rest, you certainly didn’t seem to get any last night.”

Yixing’s eyes widen and he glances behind him, only to realize Kyungsoo is looking at his neck. One of his hands flies to cover what he knows is an impressive bruise and a lighter trail disappearing beneath his shirt, glaring on his skin, an angry red and purple reminder that Baekhyun is practically teething these days, favoring leaving his marks all over Yixing’s body nearly every time they see each other.

It’s oddly possessive, though Yixing doesn’t dwell on that.

He laughs, awkward, and says, “I think we have different definitions of rest.” He pauses. “Or maybe you do need to get laid…”

Kyungsoo sputters around the lip of his beer bottle and shakes his head. “When would I even have the time to find someone? Or where? The only people I see around the office are Jongdae, you… Chanyeol…”

“I’m almost positive you see more than just us three,” Yixing rolls his eyes, but grabs onto the opportunity presented so nicely to him. “But I bet Chanyeol would be eager to help--”

This time, Kyungsoo chokes. “What.”

Yixing grins. “He’d be on his knees before you could say down boy--”

“Yixing.” Kyungsoo looks away from him and Yixing knows it’s because he’s blushing.

“Sorry, sorry,” Yixing chuckles, hardly sorry at all, of course. There’s no way Chanyeol’s almost-date wasn’t with Kyungsoo, he’s sure of it. “Brain-to-mouth filter disappears when I’m tired or drinking.”

A glare is thrown in his direction and for a moment, they’re silent again. Yixing worries he’s actually upset the other man until, “Can I ask you something, Yixing?”

“Oh. Yeah, of course.”

“Hypothetically, what would you do if you… wanted to date someone within the company?”

Kyungsoo is purposely avoiding eye contact and Yixing even stares at the floor uncertainly. He feels sort of trapped, like maybe Kyungsoo knows Yixing has been sleeping with Baekhyun. But then again… Yixing has no idea what kind of work within SM Baekhyun does. It’s not like he’s the COO or something, and then of course they're not dating, so his worries are pointless. This is about Kyungsoo and probably Chanyeol and nothing else.

But he still says, “Well… it’s against policy, right…? But I would think it wouldn't be a big deal if people in lower ranks were together at least, right? Um. I guess it would be questionable if someone in a higher position…” Yixing rakes his fingers through his hair. “I think it’s complicated, and depends on what this hypothetical person wants.”

“Would you do it?”

Biting his lip, Yixing glances sidelong at Kyungsoo. “Are you asking me that as my friend or my boss?”

Kyungsoo breathes out a laugh, dropping his head and nodding. “Your friend.”

Yixing nods too. “I think every situation is different, and you can't control how you feel, but… for me, personally, I couldn't. Not because I wouldn't want to, but I have plans that rely heavily on this job. I don't have a family to fall back on, no family inheritance or anything. But that might not be the case for everyone, you know? Someone may want to take the risk. And I mean, how hard could it be really, to secretly date someone as long as you’re professional at work? It’s not like we’re all followed around and watched.”

“Yeah, I guess you’re right.” Kyungsoo sighs.

A beat, and then, “We’re friends, Kyungsoo.”

“Um… yes?”

“So I’m asking you this because I care about you. Is this about Chanyeol?”

Wide eyes face him, but Yixing holds his ground until Kyungsoo caves. “I-It’s complicated.”

“Isn’t it always?” Yixing pops open a new bottle of beer.

“...How did you know?”

“I have eyes, you know.”

“Are we… that obvious?”

Yixing hums. “Maybe not. You guys have just always stuck out to me. I never would’ve suspected you guys were actually dating or anything, but pining? Courting? Definitely.”

Chugging the rest of his beer with obvious determination, Kyungsoo shakes his head. “What about you, anyway?” He points to Yixing’s neck. “You didn’t give in to Oh Sehun, did you?”

Yixing can’t stop the giggle that escapes him, but luckily it’s not questioned. “Um, no. No, haven’t done that.”

“So is there… someone?”

“...Sort of?”

“Sort of.”

“Sort of.” Yixing grins.

“You’re actually going to leave me hanging after breaking down my not-relationship with Chanyeol?” Kyungsoo shoves at him before grabbing another beer and Yixing laughs.

“Okay, okay. I’m not in a relationship, no. I just have this… friend.”

“Friend?”

“Mm. I don’t really do relationships, I guess. Back in China, I just had a… friend with benefits? No strings, literally just friendship and sex. I had a few in school, too. And I’ve managed to find someone here like that, too. It’s easy.”

Kyungsoo seems to consider his words. “How do you do that?”

“What?”

“Not get attached? I... I’ve had casual sex with one person. It-- well, I didn’t think it was casual at the time, if that tells you anything.”

Ouch. Yixing says as much out loud, then shrugs. “It’s not like anyone has control over how they feel. I’ve just been lucky enough not to really fall for any of my partners.” He ignores the way Luhan’s face pops up in his mind like a reflex.

“Lucky indeed,” Kyungsoo murmurs, before sitting up straight and cocking his head to the side. “Well then what’s the deal with those coffees?”

Yixing tries not to physically freeze. “What do you mean?”

“The coffees that get delivered to you all the time. I know you aren't ordering them. You work right there. So who is sending them to you?”

“Ah.” Yixing wracks his brain for excuses. “It’s just someone I helped out. And they keep sending me the coffees as some sort of thanks.”

“Hmm…” Kyungsoo doesn't look like he believes him, but he doesn't press it much further. “They must be tipping well, considering the coffeeshop only delivers to meetings.”

Yixing frowns. “Really?”

He wonders when he should start dwelling on this.

~*~

Yixing’s first Rich Party without Baekhyun goes… not according to plan.

Not that Yixing had a specific plan per se, but it still never involved getting piss-ass-drunk to chase away the overwhelming boredom and subtle miserable feeling in his gut, the loneliness without a partner in crime of sorts to pick innocent fun at their friends and fall into bed with late into the night.

He’d known immediately, as soon as he received Baekhyun’s text that he didn't want to go to one of these things without him.

> baekhyun: bad news. i have to go on an unexpected business trip. so no sexy time for us on friday :(((
> yixing: Oh… So no party then?
> baekhyun: yes party then! it’ll just be at junmyeonnie’s house!
> baekhyun: don’t miss me too much ;)

But Yixing couldn't do that to Jongdae, skip out on the party just because of the lack of Baekhyun. He couldn't so blatantly reveal that he only really enjoys these things because of Baekhyun.

He likes everyone there a lot, and considers several of them his friends, but he can never really shake the feeling that he’s still an outsider, a poor man inserting himself into the life of the wealthy unwanted, regardless of their welcoming attitudes.

But Baekhyun, despite being the richest of them all, makes him forget. When their bodies hit the bed and their clothes, the floor, it’s just Yixing and Baekhyun and their needs and desires, their pain and pleasure and battle for control.

Baekhyun has somehow become his security blanket, and Yixing isn't quite sure he’s ready to face one of these parties without him.

But Yixing goes. Yixing goes and mingles, clinging to Jongdae and Junmyeon until they turn into the damn magnets they are and start sucking face against a wall in the living room.

That’s when Yixing turns to drinking.

He starts out with wine. Simple. Familiar, as he talks a little with Jongin about their shared love for dancing, but then Sehun gets restless from the lack of attention and steals Jongin away, and Yixing somehow gets dragged into doing shots with Amber.

More wine.

More shots.

The room spins and Yixing vaguely registers that he avoids getting this drunk because it does nothing but ruin his motor skills and make him poignantly horny. He also suffers from what could possibly be the worst hangovers in existence, but that’ll come later. Now… Now Yixing’s skin tingles with arousal and his dick grows heavy in his pants as he stumbles around looking for Baekhyun.

It takes him ten minutes to realize he’s looking for someone who’s not even in the same country right now, and he groans too loudly in the kitchen. A giggly Yoona asks him if he's okay. Yixing hugs her because she’s adorable.

Then he remembers his erection that needs to be taken care of and groans again, finding the staircase and attempting to climb it. So. Many. Stairs. He falls once, on his way up, clutching his knee where pain blossoms, and crawls the rest of the way.

He finds his way into a bathroom, and gets distracted by his own reflection. His cheeks are flushed and he runs his hands through his hair to make it look a little sex-rustled. He smirks, eyes blinking slowly as he runs a hand down his abdomen.

And then a few beats later, he’s staring at his phone and wondering when he hit “call” next to Baekhyun’s name in his phone.

“Hello?”

Too late to turn back now.

Baekhyun’s voice is hushed, and Yixing can hear chatter in the background, almost like he’s at an event or something. Or another party. Instead of this party. With Yixing.

Yixing pouts at himself in the mirror. “Baekhyun,” he almost whines. “Baekhyun. I need y-- tell me what to do.”

“Yixing,” Baekhyun breathes directly into the receiver, like a sigh but it’s too quiet. Yixing wants it to be louder. He palms himself through his jeans and moans for him. He’ll fill Baekhyun’s ears with any sounds he wants. “A-Are you drunk? You’re drunk,” Baekhyun mutters, but the background noise is fading so Yixing grins to no one at all, squeezing the growing bulge in his pants and moaning needily again. Baekhyun’s breath hitches.

“Was bored,” Yixing slurs. “Don't like these parties. Don't fit in.”

A moment of silence, and then, “You fit in with me,” Baekhyun’s voice is so quiet and Yixing is too blurry to even register what he said.

Yixing places himself at the sink, in front of the mirror that lines several feet of wallspace, stretching across two sinks and a vanity. He blinks blearily at his reflection and bites his lip, presses his crotch into the counter and whimpers because it doesn't feel as good as he wants it to. “Baekhyunnie,” he whines, not in the least bit mindful of the way he uses a nickname he never has before, or that he’s acting as submissive as he only pretends to be. “Can I touch myself? I want it so bad.”

Baekhyun seems to choke on the other end, his breathing shallow. “Yeah, yes, go ahead and get started,” he murmurs. “I’m just…” A door opens and closes. “Trying to find somewhere to fucking go.”

“Mmm…” Yixing struggles with his pants’ button one-handed, nearly yanking it off entirely, but he manages and pushes his pants and underwear to the floor, kicking them to the side with his shoes and spreading his legs more comfortably. He wraps his free hand around his hard cock and moans Baekhyun’s name.

“Good,” Baekhyun coos. A door shuts and all background noise dissipates. “Are you naked?”

“Ngh.” Yixing fucks into the dry friction of his own hand clumsily. “No. Shirt.”

“Take it off.”

Yixing whines because he doesn't want to stop touching himself, but does it anyway because he likes the gentle authoritative tone in Baekhyun’s voice more. He all but rips his shirt off and immediately gets his hand back around his length. “O-Okay.”

“You’re at Junmyeon’s, right?”

“Y-Yes.”

“Bathroom?”

“Ngh.”

“There’s probably lube in the drawer under the sink. Find it.”

Yixing does. He stumbles and fumbles but he finds it and doesn't wait for direction, just sandwiches the phone between his cheek and shoulder and opens the bottle, dripping a couple of drops into his palm and rubbing himself down with it. It feels so good his knees tremble. “Wh-Where’re you, Baekhyunnie?”

“Closet. In a classroom. What are you doing right now?”

“Mmm, standing in front of the mirror--oh--and jerking off--”

Baekhyun curses under his breath, then asks, “Do you like watching yourself?”

“Yes,” Yixing moans, but it morphs into a whimper. “Your hands feel s’much better than this.”

“Always thought my hands are my best quality.”

Yixing slows the firm drag of his hand and sighs. “Y’have a lot of-those.”

“Of what?”

“B-Best qualities--ah--Baekhyun, Baekhyun I wanna come.”

“A-Already?” Baekhyun chuckles, then clears his throat. “I don't think so, Yixing. Put me on speaker and lube up one of your hands.”

Yixing scrambles to obey, fumbling his phone and just barely saving it from crashing to the counter.

“God, how drunk are you?” Baekhyun mumbles.

Yixing giggles and pinches the air in front of him. “This drunk.”

“Oh, okay. That drunk.” Baekhyun laughs, then. “Don’t hurt yourself.”

“Why would I do s’mthin’ like that, hmm?” Yixing blinks down at his slick hand. “What do I do with my hand, Baekhyunnie? ‘S wet now.”

“I can’t believe I don’t know whether to be turned on, or laugh.”

Yixing whines.

“Okay, okay. Why not both, right?” Baekhyun clears his throat again. “I want you to finger yourself. Can you do that for me?”

His voice is so sultry and Yixing bites his lip as his heartbeat picks up. He nods frantically, before realizing he can’t be seen by anyone but himself. “Y-Yeah. Wish you could do it though.”

“Mm, me too.” Rustling sounds on the other end, and then Baekhyun inhales deeply. “But I can picture it so perfectly. Spreading you apart, watching you squirm as I circle your hole with one of my slick fingers.” Yixing’s breath hitches and he grips the edge of the sink, slipping a lubed finger between his cheeks and doing just as Baekhyun said. “I love kissing your thighs, feeling them flex as I slowly sink the first finger inside you. So slowly. You always do this little whi--”

Yixing whines, just as Baekhyun knew he would, breathing deep and working a finger into himself probably slower than he’s used to. “Baek,” he whispers. The insides of his thighs tingle with the not-so-distant memory of Baekhyun’s mouth, licking and sucking bruises into his smooth skin.

“Ah--g-good.” A heavy breath blows into the receiver, and the sound of Baekhyun spitting, into his palm no doubt, follows. “Look at yourself, how good you look,” Baekhyun whispers, and Yixing’s gaze flicks up to the mirror, having fallen to the sink in his concentration. “Is your chest flushed yet? It never takes much. I used to think it was because you were embarrassed to be bottoming, but I just turn you on that much, don’t I?”

Yixing could drown in Baekhyun’s voice and say he lived a fulfilling life, he thinks. He moans softly, grunts as he works another finger into himself. His chest is indeed red. “Know me so well,” he pants, belatedly probably, but he can’t bring himself to care as he pushes himself down on his fingers, attempting to thrust on them. There’s not much give, but he’s satisfied nonetheless.

“Mm, you’re ready for another finger?”

“A-Already do-done.”

“Shit--Wait for me, Yixing. Wait for me to talk you through it.”

“Y-You’re talking too--much. Need you to… fuck me…”

Baekhyun scoffs. “I’m trying to make this sexy.”

“Don’t needa talk s’much. Your voice is enough. Voice is so sexy. Like a blanket.”

“Like a blanket.”

“Mm. Makes me feel warm.”

“You think blankets are sexy?”

Yixing giggles. “No, I think they’re warm. Din’t I jus say that?”

“Oh. You...”

Yixing squints when he realizes how empty he feels, and finds that he’s slipped off of his fingers. He curses and pushes two back in, sighing in some form of relief. He misses Baekhyun. “Baekhyunnie,” Yixing whines. “When’re you gonna- ngh- another finger...”

“B-By… I start giving your pretty cock attention when I get three fingers into you. Dragging my tongue up and down your length. God, a-and the way you almost always leak come when I suck you into my mouth.” Yixing angles his arm on the sink awkwardly so he can graze his fingers along his dick, just enough to feel it… His hips jolt, and he works his third finger alongside Baekhyun’s words, “Th-That’s--ah--when I push another finger inside you, when you’re lost on the feeling of my hot, wet mouth. And then you get impatient-- and want me to fuck you right then, even though I haven’t stretched you enough.” Yixing mumbles fuck me desperately under his breath. “Fuck yourself on my fingers, Yixing. I can’t do all the work.”

Not hesitating for even a second, Yixing does as he says, using the sink as leverage again to push himself down his fingers, and pull himself back up. He moans obscenely. “Want your cock--w-want your... cock.”

“Y-Yeah, okay--uh, just--hold still while I…? Push in…”

“G-Gonna add another fi-finger. Wanna feel full of your cock.”

“Shit. Yeah, y-you do that.” Yixing breathes through the extra stretch, of his pinky joining his other fingers, and Baekhyun groans, “Feel so good.”

Yixing loses track of reality a bit then; he’s never taken four of his own fingers before, and he thinks it hurts a little, but he also thinks Baekhyun’s voice alone could make him come untouched, so he doesn’t stop. He watches his faded eyes in the mirror as he tries to bounce on his fingers, as Baekhyun whispers seductive words of encouragement through the speaker of his phone.

It’s not hard, really, for Yixing to imagine Baekhyun standing behind him, fucking him raw, disheveled and flushed and cursing. It spurs him on. “Harder, ah--fuck me harder, Baek--!”

“Fuck. Yeah, yeah. You f-feel so good. You always feel so good around my cock. Swallowing me up like I f-fucking belong there.”

Yixing whimpers, half from his words, and half because his vision is getting too blurry to see himself in the mirror properly. The room’s spinning, too. He leans more heavily on the counter and gasps out, “You do. God, you do. Nev’r l-let an-anyone have me this much.”

Baekhyun moans. “Good.”

Yixing groans and curls his fingers inside himself. He bites down on his lip and pinches his own nipple harshly. “I lo-love it when you get rough.”

“Yeah? You want me to bite you, Yixing? Love sinking my teeth into your pretty skin. Fuck, you made me love it. You come undone so easily when I do. You’re so fucking sexy.”

Gasping frantically for breath, Yixing finally brushes his fingers against his prostate and cries out, “Right there, right there, right--”

“I know, I know, Xing. Know exactly where to stroke you. Do I feel good? God you’re amazing, hyung.”

Yixing whimpers at the honorific and watches his own abs clench in the mirror as his body starts drowning in need. “Touch--touch me, ‘m close--”

“Me too. I--do it, Xing. Come. I wanna hear you.”

Trying to let go of the counter to keep fucking himself on his fingers and stroke his cock seems to be too difficult a task; Yixing shouts in surprise when he loses balance and almost falls over. So he removes his fingers with an obscene squelch and braces himself again. Once he’s wrapping his hand around his cock is when he realizes Baekhyun is talking to him.

“Yixing? Are you okay? It sounded like you--fell.”

“Ngh. Fine.” He observes the red flush of his chest, the shine of lube on his cock. He moans Baekhyun’s name. “Y-You… Fuck. Want--” Every slow stroke of his hand brings him so much closer to the edge, and with it dissipates any brain to mouth filter he had left. “Your hands, Baekhyun. I l-love your-hands. M-My own don’t even really- really com-compare anymore--oh--wanna--wish you were h-here. Standing behind me. I wanna see what your pr-pretty hands look like on my pretty body while you fuck me until I can’t stand anymore.”

Baekhyun moans, so loud it echoes in the bathroom as if he’s actually there, and the sound sends chills up Yixing’s spine. He rubs his thumb across his slit and falls off the edge.

Yixing doesn't hold back the volume of his moans, because Baekhyun wanted to hear him, so Baekhyun will. He struggles to keep his eyes open--mostly failing--as he wrings his dick and aims warm spurts of come at his stomach.

“B-Baek--”

“I-I’m here. Fuck, I’m here.”

Yixing’s eyes droop ominously and he feels the strength of his knees giving out. He sinks to the floor, clumsily grabbing for his phone on the way down. “Come?” he mumbles. The cold tile feels good against his overheated cheek.

Baekhyun’s answering chuckle sounds disbelieving. “Yeah, yeah I did. Glad I had the forethought to take my blazer off first. Got it on my dress shirt.”

“Mmph.”

“I’ve…” Baekhyun’s voice is quiet, soothing. Yixing smiles as he floats in the sound of it. “I’ve never had phone sex before.”

“Really?” Yixing says, or, thinks he does. It sounded pretty garbled but he doesn't have the energy to try again. The statement makes a bit of sense, though, with how Baekhyun stumbled a bit through their call.

“Mm. A first for me. Just like you.”

“Jus’ like… me…?”

Baekhyun whispers, “Just like you.”

Yixing thanks him, hangs up, and promptly passes out.

~*~

Yixing wakes up in the rain.

No, that’s not right.

He blinks open his eyes and is not only made aware of his mind-splitting headache, but also that he’s propped up against the white wall of an unfamiliar shower, naked, with a half-naked Minseok crouched before him, holding the showerhead with running water above Yixing’s head.

Yixing brings the back of his hand up to shield his eyes from the fluorescent bathroom light, while simultaneously trying to cower away from the water.

“Yixing,” Minseok says, but doesn’t relent with the water. “Are you okay?”

“Tired. And--ow.”

Minseok sighs, then mumbles, “He’s just hungover. Go make him some tea, will you?”

Yixing hears Jongdae nearby say, “Yeah, of course, hyung. I’ll be back.”

Lowering his hand, Yixing squints, although that almost hurts worse than doing nothing at all. “Where’re your clothes…?”

Minseok blinks. “I… don’t like sleeping in much. And I was coming in here to take a shower anyway. Do you remember what happened last night?”

“Not really,” Yixing grunts. “Drinking. I was bored. Started drinking. Did some shots with Amber. Shared a bottle of wine with Heechul. Did some more shots with Yoona. Then I… I remember tripping up the stairs?” A bleary glance at his knee confirms it, a purple bruise decorating it. He squeezes his eyes shut. God, his head hurts.

The spray of water moves, aiming at his chest, his arms, his legs. Yixing sits there in mild humiliation while Minseok washes him off, the familiar feeling of dried come melting from his stomach. God, what did he do? Fuck the toilet?

Minseok hums and turns the water off, reaching for a towel and sitting down on the floor as he hands it to Yixing. “I feel bad. I noticed you disappeared, but I just assumed you went home. You didn’t seem very… into the party last night.”

“Sure I was,” Yixing mumbles, sort of cradling the towel against him rather than attempting to dry himself off. “Lots of fun.”

Minseok reaches for something else, and Yixing has to blink through the blurriness of his eyes to realize it’s a phone, his phone. Minseok lights it up and holds it in front of Yixing’s face for him to see.

> baekhyun: thanks for the call ;) sleep tight!
> baekhyun: drink some tea in the morning. jongdae-yah makes this lavender mint tea that works miracles for hangovers. ok?

Yixing doesn’t even know what to begin to focus on. But he thinks Minseok’s point is thanks for the call ;) and Yixing groans, dropping his head in his hands. He definitely called Baekhyun, and definitely, needily initiated phone sex. He wonders if he has a shred of dignity left.

“I’m guessing you did have fun,” Minseok chuckles. “Once you called Baekhyun.”

“Hyung--” Yixing tries, but Jongdae walks back in right then, carrying a plate and water bottle.

“It’ll take a few more minutes for the tea, but I brought you a muffin and some aspirin, Yixing hyung.” Jongdae doesn’t hesitate to sit on the floor next to Minseok, offering up the things in his hands with a sympathetic smile. “You really worried me for a second there. Freaked me out to see you passed out on the floor like that. It doesn’t even feel right to make fun of you.”

“Pity,” Yixing grumbles, then grimaces out a smile and accepts the plate and bottle with a nod. “Sorry, Dae-yah. I don’t usually drink that much.”

“You used to drink that much when something was bothering you, you know,” Jongdae says carefully. “Back in school.”

Yixing carefully avoids Minseok’s sharp gaze and shrugs. “Nothing was bothering me. Just got a bit bored and got carried away with shots.”

Neither Jongdae nor Minseok look like they believe him.

~*~

> baekhyun: do you remember anything?
> yixing: Barely anything at all. How annoying was I? Do I need to leave the country?
> baekhyun: kekeke. annoying isn't the word i’d use, you know ;)
> yixing: No?
> baekhyun: mmm nope :)
> baekhyun: cute… submissive…
> yixing: Yep, I’m leaving the country.
> baekhyun: nooo, come back!! T_T

~*~

Yixing checks his surroundings before remembering he’s alone in his apartment but god when you receive a picture message from Baekhyun, you just never know what you’re getting yourself into.

He opens the message and clicks on the picture once it loads, tilting his head curiously. It’s a picture of the sunset. A bright, almost a neon orange sky with drizzles of pink bleeding across the canvas.

> baekhyun: the sky is on fire here

It’s a group message, Yixing realizes, including himself, Jongdae, and Junmyeon.

> jongdae: :o did you add yixing hyung to our group chat, baekhyunnie?!
> baekhyun: close your mouth before i stick my dick in it.
> junmyeon: Vulgar. Welcome to KKT with these two idiots, Yixing.
> yixing: …pretty sunset.
> baekhyun: isn’t it?
> yixing: You never told me where you were going.
> baekhyun: australia!
> yixing: Oh shit. So far away. Is it nice?
> baekhyun: haven't gotten to explore yet, but it seems really nice. really pretty.
> baekhyun: i think you would like it :3
> jongdae: oh boy.
> junmyeon: Maybe we should leave the chat.

Yixing stares at his phone in confusion.

~*~

“Do you miss him?” Minseok asks, two nights after The Incident and two nights before Baekhyun’s Return. He and Sehun (and Sehun’s dog, Vivi) are over for drinks and Sehun has slipped away for a bathroom break.

Yixing pets Vivi’s head, who has curled up on his lap (Yixing finds himself much more fond of the pup now that he and Sehun have stopped fucking) and pretends not to understand Minseok’s question.

~*~

The thing is, Yixing does miss Baekhyun, and it’s only amplified when Baekhyun has to cancel their usual Tuesday night rendezvous because something came up with work, and then is subsequently unavailable until Friday night, for the next party.

Even then, Baekhyun is late. To his own party at his own penthouse. Yixing is antsy, to say the least.

“Stop squirming,” Sehun complains, huffing against his neck and making Yixing twitch.

“I’m not,” Yixing defends himself, but more than one person in the gameroom snorts and he feels his cheeks burn. Sehun would know, considering he had wrangled Yixing to sit between his legs on the floor, ever the snuggly puppy lately. Sehun’s completely wrapped around Yixing, probably very much aware of every time Yixing glances toward the doorway for no reason at all, of his sighs, and yes, of his actual squirming.

“Sure, hyung,” Sehun muses, and the only one who seems to not be watching him knowingly is Chanyeol, whose head is in Yixing’s lap with his eyes closed. Yixing frowns and pets his hair. He’s been abnormally quiet tonight, but won’t tell anyone why, crying exhaustion and then changing the subject every time.

Amber cuts into his thoughts. “Honestly, Yixing ge, how have you two survived for like, a week without fucking? The way you guys go at it I figured you need it to breathe or something.” Yixing doesn't bother to correct her in that it’s been nearly two weeks now.

“Is this really our topic of conversation?” Heechul drawls, leaning on his pool cue and waiting for Amber to take her turn in their game. Heechul’s doing poorly, but, most people do against Amber.

“I’m with Heechul hyung!” Yixing exclaims. “Besides, I resent that considering Jongdae and Junmyeon hyung spend every Friday night sucking each other’s faces off in plain sight.”

“He has a point,” Yoona concedes, playfully kicking Amber’s thigh from where she’s sitting in a chair. “At least Yixing and Baekhyun keep it to the bedroom.”

Amber rolls her eyes, mirthful. “Then maybe Baek should invest in soundproof walls.”

“Maybe I’m working on it,” sounds from the doorway and Yixing catches himself smiling before he’s even looked up.

Baekhyun is the definition of “a sight for sore eyes” and Yixing has to use every ounce of willpower within him not to jump up and drag him upstairs.

His cashmere sweater of choice is navy blue, but he has black slacks, dress shoes, and reddened cheeks like maybe he got here and ran straight upstairs to change into the sweater.

Various shouts and greetings ring out across the room and Baekhyun beams at them all. “Everyone looks ready to fall asleep,” he muses. “You guys don't know how to have fun without me?”

Yixing glances around. It is a bit more casual than the usual party. The parties are typically treated as “business casual” and throughout the house, even in the gameroom, people are usually standing and chatting and drinking in their nice clothes, but tonight Amber had sent out a group text along the lines of fuck the dress code, deciding to ditch the Rich Party attire in favor of comfort and warmth; even Yoona, who always, always wears a cute dress, is in shorts, tights, and a blouse tonight. Someone even hooked their phone up to a wireless speaker, playing a random playlist as background noise.

This is more Yixing’s pace.

“We were having plenty of fun without you.” Yoona sticks her tongue out.

“We've been relaxing,” Sehun adds.

“Oh?” Baekhyun quirks a brow and not so subtly gives Yixing a once over, as if questioning his and Sehun’s (and Chanyeol’s) specific method of relaxing. “I could use some relaxation.”

Yixing’s pretty sure he can hear everyone’s simultaneous eye roll and he’s a few seconds from joining them before Baekhyun determinedly trots over and gently tugs at Yixing’s arm.

“Come on,” Baekhyun murmurs with a grin. “I want in.”

Sehun whines, “You’re really going to break up the cuddle train??” as Yixing takes great caution not to jostle or hurt Chanyeol.

Yixing snorts and Baekhyun stares incredulously around Yixing’s shoulder as he steps over Sehun’s leg. “Cuddle train,” Baekhyun deadpans.

“Shut up,” Sehun mumbles, but he’s already tugging Chanyeol up to take Yixing’s place while everyone else laughs.

Yixing’s laugh is cut short, however, when he’s suddenly being tugged back down to the floor and wrangled between another pair of legs. He makes a half-hearted sound of protest but it transforms more into contented curiosity once Baekhyun’s arms slip snugly around his waist, cold nose unabashedly nuzzling his neck. “So warm,” he mumbles only loud enough for Yixing to hear. “Hi.”

Swallowing, Yixing turns his face away from their friends and murmurs back, “Hi.”

It’s different. Sehun likes to hold Yixing because Sehun is so much bigger than him, but Baekhyun is roughly the same size as Yixing, a couple of inches shorter, even, and it somehow makes it feel less casual, to be pressed up against each other so comfortably, so warmly, in front of everyone else.

Baekhyun’s thumb strokes Yixing’s stomach and after conveying his best I don’t know expression to Amber’s quirked brow, Yixing has no choice but to give in, sinking down just a hair and leaning his head back against Baekhyun’s shoulder, resting a hand on Baekhyun’s knee.

Jongin and Taemin enter the room a moment later, having gone to the kitchen for drinks. Taemin shows the same curiosity Amber had at the new sight, and Jongin just tilts his head puppy-like.

It’s Jongin’s first party at Baekhyun’s, second party with this group. He’s still quiet, much quieter than the rest of them, but he hit it off well with Taemin, who had decided to take him under his wing. Otherwise, Jongin just sticks close to Yixing and Sehun, but he seems happy to be included.

Jongin walks over and hands Yixing the Cola he had requested. “Thanks, Jonginnie. This is Baekhyun. Baek, this is Jongin.”

“No problem. And nice to meet you Baekhyun-ssi. You have a lovely home.” Jongin beams and bows his head--Yixing feels Baekhyun do the same--and moves to sit on the other side of Sehun.

Yixing pops open his Cola and watches as Sehun subtly straightens his posture. Baekhyun snorts. “Laying off the alcohol this week, Yixing?” he murmurs secretively against the shell of Yixing’s ear.

Yixing retaliates by pinching Baekhyun’s thigh, who quietly shrieks and laughs, wrapping a leg around Yixing’s as they rock to the side together before settling back into place. “Can't be too careful,” Yixing says.

“Hmm, I don't know. I kind of liked drunk Yixing.” Baekhyun’s finger slowly circles Yixing’s naval, making him shudder. Then Baekhyun is whispering again, “So submissive. Begging just for me to tell him what to do next.”

Yixing sort of melts against him, his touch already driving him out of his mind. He’s too deprived of Baekhyun. Baekhyun should go on another business trip in exactly never. And he’s weak enough to wish Baekhyun would drop his hand lower, tease his crotch with his lithe fingers while all of their friends watch.

“You’d be singing a different tune,” Yixing mumbles, hoping he doesn't sound too turned on. “If you had been the one to have to clean me up the next morning.”

“Yeah?” Baekhyun plays with the hem of Yixing's soft shirt and raises his knees higher next to him, making Yixing feel more caged in. “Were you a mess?”

Yixing nods, turning his face into Baekhyun’s neck, eyelids fluttering as their friends cheer loudly about pool and Baekhyun’s finger draws circles on his crotch. Fuck, how is Baekhyun everything he's ever wanted? “Completely,” he breathes.

“Tell me.”

Yixing leans back to take a peek for a moment. Baekhyun is watching their friends, smiling as if he's paying attention to them and not suddenly massaging Yixing’s dick through his jeans with two incredibly insistent fingers. Yixing has to dive back into the safety of the crook of Baekhyun's neck and bite his lip to keep from moaning.

“Tell me,” Baekhyun repeats, slowly cupping his crotch and squeezing.

Yixing whimpers. “Take me upstairs first. Wanna ride you like this.”

Baekhyun yanks him up and drags him from the room.

~*~

Yixing openly stares at Baekhyun’s exhausted face.

It’s not even that his eyelids are drooping or that he’s spacing out, it’s in the lines of his forehead, the redness of his eyes. Yixing reaches over and smooths some of Baekhyun’s tangled hair down. “Don't you get tired of every Friday being devoted to these parties?” he asks.

The sound of glass shattering floats up the stairs. It’s not even that kind of party, so Yixing feels like they should be concerned, but Baekhyun doesn't budge, so neither does he.

The other man shrugs. “Sometimes we have them on Saturdays.”

Yixing rolls his eyes, sighing. “It just seems exhausting, is all.”

But Baekhyun shrugs again. “Everyone needs to unwind, no? A safe place.” Yixing watches Baekhyun’s mind take him somewhere else completely, and Yixing’s brows press together in something akin to concern. “Away from the eyes of SM.”

The forbidden topic of SM, Yixing thinks. The place they both work but is off-limits to discuss, and also apparently stressful enough to completely knock Baekhyun’s usual cheerful mood off-kilter.

But the vague, distant mood shifts as quickly as it appeared and Baekhyun smiles, rolling on top of him and wiggling enticingly. He pokes his bottom lip out in a fake pout. “You enjoy it, don't you, Yixing?”

Yixing scoffs and flips them quickly enough to make Baekhyun shriek gleefully. He nips at Baekhyun’s lips. “I enjoy you,” he answers honestly. “Don't really care about the parties.”

Sinking his fingers into Yixing’s hair, Baekhyun preens. “Somehow I think that’s enough for my ego.”

“Is eating your ass out enough for your ego? Because I’m going to do that now.”

He’s already moving down, dragging teeth and tongue along Baekhyun’s torso as Baekhyun moans, hands staying buried in Yixing’s hair. “You always go on about how much I love cock but fuck you love ass just as much.”

“Hmm…” Yixing spreads Baekhyun’s cheeks with his hands and darts his tongue between them, tracing his rim slowly. Baekhyun mewls. “Not that I approve of boosting your aforementioned ego, but your ass is pretty perfect,” Yixing mumbles.

“Tell me something I don't know.”

Yixing watches Baekhyun’s dick twitch with interest and smirks. “Gonna come again, Baekhyun?” Another slow lick, an obscene, flat press of his tongue.

“I just might,” Baekhyun grits out through clenched teeth. His next words are lost in the wind of his moan, as Yixing slips his tongue past the tight ring of muscle in his ass. “Yixing,” Baekhyun nearly sings, nails gently scraping along Yixing’s scalp.

Yixing chuckles. It’s not as if he’s done much yet, but he knows Baekhyun gets off on narcissistic things, like hearing his own voice, but especially being praised and doted on, thoroughly taken care of.

Yixing hums as he works, buried between Baekhyun’s cheeks like he’s drinking from the Fountain of Life itself, hands kneading Baekhyun’s thick thighs appreciatively until one maneuvers enough to delicately stroke at Baekhyun’s perineum.

Baekhyun’s moans escalate to pornographic volumes.

A flick of his eyes upward tells Yixing that Baekhyun is hard again, and he smirks as he meets Baekhyun’s eyes, pressing a little more firmly against that one spot.

“God, what the fuck, you’re so hot--”

Yixing curls his tongue, purposely catching on Baekhyun’s rim, and uses his thumb to rub circles against that bundle of nerves. Baekhyun shudders and yells and tugs Yixing’s hair painfully. Yixing’s eyes flutter at the sensation and he ruts his growing erection against the mattress.

Fumbling, Baekhyun grabs for a condom, rolls it on, then he snatches the lube still out on the nightstand and drips some messily onto his cock. He tugs Yixing up by the hair--Yixing will find the time to be frustrated about the lube coating his hair now later--and Yixing goes with ease, lets himself be manhandled until he's on his back and his rim is gently being prodded at, Baekhyun desperate.

“Are you still good?” Baekhyun pants. “Can I fuck you again?”

“Yes,” Yixing moans softly, pushing his hips down like he’s trying to mount the dick himself.

Baekhyun mumbles something about stupid, perfect men and slides inside Yixing without further questioning.

Yixing doesn't have time to wince at the slight pain of it because once Baekhyun is fully sheathed, he’s wrangling Yixing’s wrists onto the bed almost roughly, pressing them into the mattress. “No time for ties,” he mumbles and Yixing shudders as Baekhyun’s grip tightens. He loves this side of Baekhyun. The primal instincts that take him over, holding Yixing tight enough to bruise.

Baekhyun presses his weight forward, most of it falling to his hands and Yixing’s wrists, and rolls his hips once, twice. He pulls out almost all the way, then slams back in. “Fuck, so good,” he mutters. “Always so good.”

The pace is relentless. Their moans, and the sound of their skin slapping gracelessly, fills the room, fills the fucking penthouse, probably. It’s obscene and cliché, the way Yixing knows the headboard banging against the wall in time with their sex can be heard downstairs, because that’s how hard Baekhyun is fucking him.

Yixing thrives in it, in Baekhyun taking him this way without direction, in the pain in his wrists, in the immense pleasure building rapidfire in his groin.

“Baekhyun, Baek, Baekhyun,” Yixing chants.

The other man’s breath hitches and he grunts, releasing one of Yixing’s wrists to wrap a hand around his cock instead. Yixing takes advantage of the freedom to tug Baekhyun’s hair harshly as he tries to buck his hips and simultaneously fuck himself on Baekhyun’s cock and hand.

Baekhyun’s hips stutter and he digs his nails into Yixing’s wrist, his thumb against the slit of Yixing’s dick, prompting Yixing to come first, shouting, with Baekhyun following mere seconds after.

The franticness seems to die on the spot as Baekhyun flops back onto the bed and pants. He rolls onto his side and sluggishly reaches for Yixing’s arm that remained pinned the entire time, blinks lethargic as he observes the red marks left behind by his nails. He rubs weak circles into them. “Didn't break skin. Good.”

Yixing does the clean up. Baekhyun half-heartedly protests but it’s all too easy to shut him up with a kiss and an order to lay back down. He’s still grinning dopily, half-asleep by the time Yixing slips back into the bed.

“You nev’r told me ‘bout your mess,” Baekhyun mumbles.

Yixing idly plays with one of the other man’s hands. “Hm?”

“‘Bout the night we had phone sex.”

“You were too into the idea of me reverse cowgirling you for me to get to that.”

Baekhyun giggles. “Worth it.”

Yixing rolls his eyes but doesn't disagree. He tells Baekhyun his tale, settling into it like a fucking bedtime story, Baekhyun laughing all the while.

“I do feel bad you passed out on the ground.” He yawns. “Prolly wasn't good for your waist.”

Yixing is… oddly touched by the thought. He’d told Baekhyun about his--probably permanently--injured waist one night when it started hurting a little. “It was fine, I guess. The hangover kept my mind off of it.”

Baekhyun giggles again, yawns again, and they both fall silent.

“Y’could stay, if y’want,” Baekhyun slurs into his pillow after sometime, eyes drooping heavily. “‘S cold.”

And then he’s asleep.

Yixing gulps. There’s a lamp on behind Baekhyun that casts shadows across his face, making his eyelashes look unrealistically long, and masking the exhausted red of his undereyes. It takes years off of him, though Yixing supposes everyone looks younger when they sleep. But it’s something else, too. There’s no meticulously calculated expression, where Baekhyun is determined to always appear a certain way--Rich, Haughty, Sultry--but now there’s only this softness that makes him look terribly innocent and open and vulnerable. Beautiful.

Carefully reaching forward, Yixing swipes his thumb as gently as he can manage next to the other man’s eye, trying to rid him of a smudge of eyeliner there. But his touch lingers and he can’t even lie to himself and pretend he only wanted to help. No. He wants to touch, wants to feel Baekhyun’s soft skin beneath his palm.

Baekhyun shifts a little, getting more comfortable in his unconsciousness, and before Yixing can jump away, scared he’s started to wake him, Baekhyun makes a soft sound, like he’s contented, and gently latches onto Yixing’s hand, holding it against his face, hugging it to himself.

It takes Yixing… a while to relax, to unfreeze his limbs, unwiden his eyes, and from that point, he doesn’t know how long he lays there, stroking soft skin with his thumb, staring.

Then he gathers his things, turns off the lamp, and goes home.

Chapter Text

On December 20th, Yixing wakes up with a headache.

He blinks slowly up at his ceiling, watching the shadows that dance across it from the way his blinds sway with the gust of the vent heater. He wants to dance like them. He hasn't danced in so long.

For an hour, he stares, and stares, and stares. He stares until his eyes go dry and he has to squeeze them shut for relief, until his headache is throbbing so harshly, he can hear it pounding in his ears.

Slowly, he peels himself from his bed, stumbles into the kitchen. His eyes burn with unshed tears even though he is resolutely not thinking about it.

His mother died a year ago today.

And, well, now he’s thinking about it.

He ignores the streams of tears cascading down his cheeks as he drags his keyboard out from where he had hastily stashed it in his closet, setting it on its stand. He plays a song for her, just one. It was always her favorite piano piece--Can’t Let Go by Huang An. He thinks the end sounds more like a jumble of notes than anything, as he can’t see through his blurred vision or hear over his quiet sobs.

After that he stumbles to the kitchen, calming himself with a few deep breaths before he knocks back a few painkillers and a glass of water and trips over his couch to curl up on it.

He’s done a good job distracting himself for the past year, but perhaps it was too good. Maybe he should've thought about it more, thought about her more. Maybe he wouldn't be in the fetal position on his couch crying like a child on the first anniversary of her death.

Someone knocks on his door eventually. He doesn't answer. His phone rings. He doesn't answer.

He only told Kyungsoo what today was, because he asked to have the day off, but he’s sure Kyungsoo mentioned it to Jongdae. Jongdae probably mentioned it to others. It could be anyone at the door really. It could be the landlord, for all he knows.

He doesn't even react when a key turns in his door, but a distant part of him knows it has to be Sehun, because only Sehun knows where his spare key is. He just doesn't expect Junmyeon of all people to be with him.

Junmyeon is carrying multiple bags, and Sehun drops everything in his hands unceremoniously to rush over to Yixing’s side, dropping to his knees next to the couch and immediately wiping at the tears on Yixing’s face.

“Hyung, it’s okay,” he whispers shakily. “You shouldn't be alone like this.”

But Junmyeon’s voice cuts in, almost stern. “Sehun,” he says like a warning, and Sehun backs away a little bit. “Yixing… we brought you food and some stuff to watch. Do you want us to stay?”

Yixing’s not sure how long it takes for him to nod, but he does eventually. He’s not really fond of being a blubbering mess in front of them, but he’s even less fond of being alone right now.

Sehun fusses over him for a while, and Yixing remains pliant, silent. Junmyeon moves around the place, in the kitchen, Yixing thinks, until he’s putting in a DVD he brought with him and fitting himself at the end of the couch, pulling Yixing’s head onto his lap, petting his hair. Sehun stays on the floor where he had been, but facing the TV instead. Yixing clenches the fabric of Sehun’s t-shirt in his fist like it will ground him.

The first thing Yixing says, rough and raspy, an hour after his friends arrive is, “Why aren't you at work?”

“Jongdae couldn't get out of work,” Junmyeon responds softly. “So he sent Sehun. I’m on vacation for the next two weeks.”

“I-I’m sorry,” Yixing murmurs, and Sehun turns his head to face him, eyebrows cinched. “I’m just being burdensome.”

“Hyung,” Sehun sighs.

And Junmyeon adds, “You’re not being burdensome, Xing. We’re your friends. We’re here for you.”

Yixing presses his face into Junmyeon’s thigh and lets a few more tears fall, his consciousness fading in and out for a while.

“Do you want to talk about it?” Junmyeon asks later, cautious, as Sehun switches DVDs. Yixing doesn't even know what they've been watching.

He swallows thickly. “Sh-She was the most important thing in my life,” he rasps. “She was my rock. The only one who believed in my dreams. My studio. I--I try not to think about her, because it hurts so much, but that makes me really terrible, doesn't it?”

He turns his head to look up at Junmyeon, who shakes his head almost fiercely. “No, it doesn't, Yixing. She would want you to be happy. She would be proud of you right now for doing everything you can to work toward your dream.”

“I just miss her so much.”

“I know, Xing, I know.”

It’s even later, once Yixing hasn't cried for a few hours and has managed to eat something that he thinks he craves a much better distraction.

The ghost feeling of long fingers in his hair makes his eyes flutter shut, only to see visions of messy blonde hair and flushed cheeks, soft, private smiles. He can practically feel the body he craves clinging to him, half asleep and full of indulgent kisses.

Yixing’s breath catches in his chest and he grips at Junmyeon’s knee in front of his face. Junmyeon makes a worried noise and sinks his fingers back into Yixing’s hair to comfort him, but it’s not the fingers Yixing wants.

The tried and true realization that he wants to see Baekhyun just because he’s Baekhyun doesn't sit well with Yixing. In fact, he feels rather sick.

But he blames it on being vulnerable and overly dependent and texts Baekhyun anyway, because sex could be an even better distraction than what his mind keeps playing out for him.

> yixing: Are you free?
> baekhyun: give me like an hour and i can be?
> baekhyun: wanna come over? ;)
> yixing: Want you to ruin me.
> baekhyun: ...um, then get your tiny ass over here!

“Junmyeonnie. Sehunnie,” Yixing murmurs. “I think I’m... gonna go out for a bit.”

“What??” Junmyeon jerks in a way that says he was falling asleep, his fingers curling in Yixing’s hair with the movement.

It just makes Yixing squirm and want Baekhyun more.

~*~

By the time Yixing is in Baekhyun’s bedroom, a place that has become increasingly comfortable and familiar to him, he thinks he feels worse.

It’s because he can't shake the heaviness within him, he knows. He shouldn't be here in this state. He shouldn't be burdening Baekhyun. He shouldn't be depending on Baekhyun.

“I need a distraction, Baekhyun,” he says anyway as Baekhyun walks into the room. “Do your worst.”

“My best worst, or my worst worst?” Baekhyun teases, in that way he always does.

Yixing keeps silent, stripping out of his clothes. Baekhyun freezes a moment, and Yixing pretends not to notice his worried expression.

Yixing lays himself out on the bed and waits. It’s clear Baekhyun isn't sure how to approach the situation, but Yixing stays patient, watches him slowly undress. He knows he’s acting way too off, he can see it in every glance Baekhyun casts his way, but Yixing can't help it.

His eyes follow as Baekhyun approaches the bed and crawls right on top of him, pinning him down with his body and caging his head with his arms. “What do you want?” Baekhyun whispers.

“For you to take control.”

Baekhyun’s eyes search his for perhaps a moment too long, clearly assessing the statement, probably waiting for the ball to drop and for Yixing to laugh in his face, but Yixing is being serious. He’s exhausted, completely mentally drained, and he doesn't want to have to think about what to do next, he just wants to feel. Something other than overwhelming sadness.

Leaning in, Baekhyun murmurs, “Kiss me.”

And, well, it’s a start.

Their noses bump as they both surge forward and crash together, Baekhyun pressing impossibly closer, breathing Yixing in as if he’s the only source of oxygen left.

“Bite me,” Yixing whispers as Baekhyun kisses his jaw. He sinks his teeth into the crook of Yixing’s neck without hesitation and it hurts; Yixing gasps, fingertips digging into the skin of Baekhyun’s buttcheek as he bucks his hips up, glad that Baekhyun somehow understands the caliber Yixing needs.

It’s Baekhyun who whispers next, “Pin me down.”

Yixing almost doesn't want to. He just wants to lie there and take whatever Baekhyun throws at him, but he knows a power opportunity when he sees one. He flips them, more proficiently than expected, and presses Baekhyun’s wrists into the mattress in a way that could only be painful, hands squeezing as he licks his way past Baekhyun’s lips filthily, switching to holding his wrists roughly in one hand as he scrapes his teeth down Baekhyun’s throat and wraps his newly free hand around both their cocks.

He spits, and uses precome, and eventually grabs for the lube, getting them nice and slick and turning them both into a moaning pile of limbs and sweat before releasing Baekhyun’s wrists and murmuring, “Scratch me.”

The push and pull continues, order after order falling from their lips, until it feels like Yixing’s entire body is stinging with pain and pleasure, and he’s the only one demanding anymore.

Use me.

Make me scream.

Edge me. Fuck me. Ruin me.

Baekhyun ties him up thoroughly, arms crossed above his head, making him more immobile than usual, then drags out ropes Yixing has never seen before, soft to the touch where Baekhyun hooks them around the back of Yixing’s knees and pulls until his legs are hiked up in the air and out of the way, tying them to the headboard as well. It’s like their pool table endeavor but more. Yixing wasn't this helpless back then; there was give on the ties enough for him to move his limbs a bit. Now he can't move but to curl his fingers and toes and his stomach turns in a nervous kind of anticipation, watching a silent Baekhyun dig through a drawer and pull out a black box, merely setting it on the bed before crawling between Yixing’s legs and taking his chin between a thumb and forefinger. “Are you sure, Yixing? That you want this?”

Yixing nods. “Anything goes tonight, Baekhyun. Do what you want.”

“Anything?”

“Anything. I don't care tonight.”

Biting his lip, Baekhyun smooths down one of Yixing’s brows with his thumb. “What’s your safe word, Yixing?” he asks softly, as if Baekhyun is concerned, not threatening him.

“Teddy bear. You know that.”

Baekhyun nods before sitting back on his haunches, but despite the mystery box and the open-ended offer, Baekhyun immediately slicks up his hand and slides a finger inside Yixing, albeit a bit harshly, but still, it’s not what Yixing expects.

Baekhyun stretches him open with less stimulation than usual--though for the third finger he does still lick at Yixing’s cock like the lollipop he thinks it is--but then he’s rolling a condom on and propping Yixing’s hips on a pillow and sliding his dick inside him as if he doesn't have an endless list of opportunities to pursue.

After a few shallow thrusts, Yixing thinks he might be starting to see the bigger picture, as Baekhyun sits low on his knees, digs his nails into Yixing’s stomach, and fucks. It’s the most relentless Baekhyun’s ever gone, the least attentive he’s ever been, his nails scratching uneven, ugly, red marks with every thrust, avoiding all contact with Yixing’s cock and prostate.

He wastes no time on theatrics, clearly chasing a quick release while Yixing just endures. He gasps for breath, arching painfully, and keeps trying to wrap his legs around Baekhyun without thinking, unexpectedly desperate for contact, floating in the pain he craves.

Expletives fall from Baekhyun’s swollen lips, sweat bounces from his skin with every sharp snap of his hips. Black dots Yixing’s vision and he vaguely remembers he didn’t drink anything Junmyeon had set in front of him today. No tea, no water, no nothing.

By the time he blinks and blinks and blinks the darkness away, he’s empty, devoid of Baekhyun, who has ripped off his condom and now strokes himself while he stares with heavy-lidded eyes at Yixing’s helpless body.

The chance to breathe again sweeps away the nausea that had threatened Yixing for a moment there. “You love this,” he croaks. Baekhyun nods and keens and after a few more strokes of his cock, comes on Yixing’s stomach and chest. He falls forward, just barely catching himself in time before crushing Yixing, but his hips are still elevated and now Baekhyun is pressed firmly against his crotch. His breath hitches, but he continues in a murmur, “Having every ounce of control.”

“You love it, too,” Baekhyun mumbles breathlessly into his neck. “S-So why do you so willingly give it up to me?”

“Doesn’t matter.” Yixing nudges him with his chin. “I told you to do your worst. That was hardly it.” All he’s gotten is an aching asshole so far. He needs more.

There’s a flash of that concern again when Baekhyun picks his head up, but he replaces it with a glare. All for show. Everything Baekhyun does is all for show. He reaches between them, pressing two fingers against Yixing’s stomach and dragging them through come.

He shoves his fingers in Yixing’s mouth without warning, as far as they’ll go. Yixing gags around them first, but sucks obediently, moans obscenely even though he hates the taste. He knows how to put on a show too. Although Baekhyun’s fingers are always quite the treat, regardless of what they’re coated in.

“Now,” Baekhyun huffs. “Shut the fuck up and let me finish what I had planned.”

Yixing gently bites down on the other man’s fingers in lieu of a proper response and Baekhyun replaces his fingers with his tongue, chasing his own taste, tugging on Yixing’s hair to manhandle the only thing Yixing still has control of, pulling his bottom lip between his teeth, scraping his teeth against his chin.

Baekhyun picks himself back up and sits, legs crossed in front of him, giving himself a presumably perfect view of Yixing’s ass. Baekhyun grins, and Yixing decides it’s evil.

The other man pulls the mystery box from where it’s still sitting next to them and lifts the lid, peering inside as if he doesn’t already know what’s in there. “So many choices,” he murmurs. “Want to use them all…”

The process of Baekhyun going through his box of what Yixing quickly learns is sex toys is excruciating; Baekhyun takes his sweet time selecting his weapons, but he teases, ponders aloud the possibility of using anal beads, a whip, cat ears.

But he settles on none of those things.

“This is an all-in-one kinda deal,” Baekhyun says, too innocently, as he slips Yixing’s balls into what clearly seems to be a cock and ball ring, before also sliding his cock into it. Yixing groans, but his stomach betrays him, flipping with excitement at the prospect of being thoroughly drawn out. And then Baekhyun is focused on gently adjusting the toy, maneuvering the thin, flexible rod attached to the rings, and Yixing didn’t see the toy before it was being used on him, but he can assume with the length and flexibility, that something is going in his ass.

Sure enough, after a moment of Baekhyun working quietly, he grazes his fingers along Yixing’s cock and something cold, hard, and slick slips inside him as he moans and flexes his hands. It’s… not very big, certainly doesn’t fill him up the way Baekhyun does at least; it’s merely a bulbous head that he’s going to feel more on the way out than he did on the way in.

Baekhyun thrusts it in and out of Yixing, working it deeper and deeper until Yixing isn’t sure how Baekhyun is even holding onto it, the pull between the two ends of the toy getting tighter and tighter.

And then he hits it, Yixing’s prostate. Yixing gasps and Baekhyun grins; he always knows where to find Yixing’s prostate much more efficiently than he does himself. It’s a scary talent.

Pressing the toy in a little more firmly, Baekhyun asks, “Still on your sweet spot?” His grin is shit-eating. Yixing wants to kiss it off. He just grunts affirmation. The toy is a foreign feeling, with the way it tugs a little on his cock because the other end is so deep.

And then Baekhyun stops messing with it, leaving it be as he rummages through the box again. He sets what looks like a body wand on the bed, then moves to remove the pillow from under Yixing’s hips. The angle change actually presses the head of the toy a bit more firmly against his prostate and he bites his lip.

Baekhyun is between his legs again, and a vibration starts behind Yixing’s ear.

Slowly, Baekhyun drags the miniature body wand down Yixing’s neck and what the fuck it feels good. Yixing sighs, high-pitched and needy, twitching as Baekhyun gently sucks on his adam’s apple, pulling the wand down his collarbone.

He sits back up on his knees and presses the head of the vibrating toy against one of Yixing’s nipples, his thumb and forefinger pinching the skin of the other. Then he switches.

By the time the vibrations focus in on Yixing’s navel, he’s already starting to see stars again, every twitch from every tiny bit of stimulation pressing him against the toy in his ass. It’s a slow kind of torture, one that could drag out Yixing’s pleasure for so long he wonders if they’ll get any sleep tonight.

His moans are consistent now as Baekhyun runs the body wand along his balls; his hips jerk, desperately trying to press closer to the two toys. Baekhyun smirks and sinks his teeth into the soft flesh of Yixing’s inner thigh, nimble fingers blindly turning the knob on the body wand to a higher setting. “F-Fuck, Baek- f-fuck.” His limbs tingle with the tell-tale sign of them falling asleep in their tied positions, and it almost adds to the sensations he’s already experiencing.

Baekhyun sucks bruises all over Yixing’s inner thighs, and just when Yixing has lost all feeling in his arms and legs, the body wand disappears, and the toy in his ass starts vibrating instead.

Yixing shouts. “What the fuck--what the fuck what the fuck--”

He hears Baekhyun giggle, who somehow hasn’t gotten bored with biting at Yixing’s thighs, and Yixing looks to see him holding up a small remote. Yixing groans and gasps and arches; it’s clear the bulb is what’s vibrating, but it carries through the toy just enough to make the rings trapping him feel it a little bit, too. “Fuck, fuck, fuck--” he cries out. He won’t last like this. At all.

And then Baekhyun says, “Mm, be right back,” and leaves the room.

Yixing swears, shouts, moans, calls Baekhyun’s name.

He’s drenched in sweat and desperately teetering on the edge when he notices Baekhyun leaning against the doorway, nonchalantly drinking a glass of wine. He doesn’t know how much time has passed or how long Baekhyun’s been fucking standing there, but-- “Baekhyun, please. Please I need you so bad.”

Baekhyun tilts his head as if he’s pondering what to do, then slowly, slowly smiles as he lifts his free hand and presses a button on the remote Yixing didn’t know he was holding.

The vibration speed picks up.

Yixing writhes, his head and torso moving as much as they possibly can to somehow make up for the pleasure thrumming uncontrollably through his body. “Baek, Baek, Baek,” he chants, eyes squeezed shut and head rolling back, neck bared.

No one answers or laughs or anything, and Yixing looks through blurry eyes--tears, those are tears blocking his vision--to find that Baekhyun, indeed, fucking deserted him again.

He’s trembling uncontrollably, a weird feeling, seeing as he can mostly only feel it in his upper thighs that haven’t numbed yet. He spits out a shaky, “Fuck you,” when Baekhyun strolls back into the room, grinning lazily, cock half-erect again.

“Ah, ah, ah,” Baekhyun sweetly reprimands, pressing the button on the remote.

Yixing screams. The pressure in his gut is almost unbearable, his balls heavier than they’ve ever fucking felt. “Baekhyun,” he downright sobs. “Baekhyun, I need to come now.”

Baekhyun climbs onto the bed, stands on it, and Yixing is just about to blearily question what the fuck he’s doing, when he carefully steps between the ropes binding Yixing’s legs, and sinks down to straddle his stomach.

He rests a hand on Yixing’s collarbone, very nearly on his throat, and says, “You’re being so good for Baekhyunnie, maybe I could...”

“Please!” Yixing blinks rapidly through the flood of tears irritating his eyes.

Baekhyun hums thoughtfully and starts stroking his own cock, remote on the bed and hand still at the base of Yixing’s throat. Yixing feels like his entire body is buzzing, vibrating, and tears leak down his temples and into his hair while he sobs out strangled moans, astounded by Baekhyun’s patience.

The hand on Yixing’s collarbone glides up to cup his jaw, thumb dipping between his parted lips. “Wanna fuck your mouth so bad, Yixing. God, your lips always look so good around my cock.” Baekhyun picks up the pace of his strokes on himself, moaning softly. “Your eyelashes get all wet with tears like this when I slide into your throat. Such a fucking beautiful sight.”

Yixing whimpers, sucking on the tip of Baekhyun’s thumb, pressing into his touch. His hand feels so good on his overheated face. Black dots dance across his vision again. “B-Baek--”

After several more firm strokes, Baekhyun lets go of himself and Yixing, leaning back and clumsily wrapping his hand around Yixing’s cock instead, who curses, entire body tensing as his body jolts from just how good the touch feels. ”Fuck, Baekhyun--w-why does it feel this good--”

“Never used a cock ring, Xing? God, you feel so full. Let go, Xing. It’ll feel even better.”

The angle is a bit awkward, but it works well enough to draw Yixing’s orgasm from him, and then to milk it from him. His vision whites out and his fingers and toes try so hard to curl but they’re motionless. His head bobs as his chest arches and breath hitches. He floats, intoxicated, high on release and numb in all the best ways.

But he’s not really coming down, he realizes belatedly, the relief only partial. He came, but his body isn’t relaxing, pleasure still soaring. It’s too much, he’s too sensitive. “B-Baek--Baekhyun the vibr--Baek--I’m--”

Warmth hits his throat, simultaneous to Baekhyun’s answering moan, and then his lips, his cheek, his hair. Yixing can barely open his eyes enough to see Baekhyun’s blissed out expression; the stimulation on his prostate skirts him along what feels an awful lot like a weak, dry orgasm, yet it’s still like a punch to the gut, and he cries through his moans, or moans through his crying, he’s not sure which.

“Did y-you just--” Baekhyun starts, but Yixing tenses up.

“Ba-Baek turn it o-off. Turn it off turnitoff--” It’s too fucking much. If it keeps going he’ll lose his mind.

“Shit--” Baekhyun snatches the remote from the bed and presses a button repeatedly until it finally stops. Yixing gasps sharply, searching for air, relief finally seeping into his bones.

His head falls back onto the bed, boneless as he whispers, “Please untie me.”

Baekhyun nods, setting the remote aside and quickly moving to untie Yixing’s wrists. They fall limply above Yixing’s head. He whimpers. “H-Help me move them. I can’t…”

Eyes widening, Baekhyun gently grabs his hands and places them against his own hips, arms lining thighs as he starts rubbing little circles into Yixing’s skin. Yixing fades from consciousness, then back in again. Out. In.

His next real moment of awareness comes when a cool rag is wiping at his face. Baekhyun is still straddling him, or, maybe he’s straddling him again, because he feels clean of come, his legs are lying flat on the bed, and his body is toy-free.

He blinks his eyes open when the rag gently swipes under one of them, vision full of a soft-looking Baekhyun smiling at him. “Hey.”

“Hey,” Yixing murmurs. It hurts to talk, though. His throat is on fire. “Water?”

“Yeah, here, come on.” Baekhyun scoots back, apparently not willing to actually get off of Yixing, and pulls him up into a sitting position--the room spins when he goes. Baekhyun reaches around him and brings back a bottle of water, unscrewing it and handing it to him. His arms still feel like jelly, but he accepts it gratefully and knocks back half of it without stopping.

“Easy,” Baekhyun murmurs, smoothing down Yixing’s hair, grabbing him by the head and tilting it side to side, examining him. “How do you feel?”

Sad. Confused. Exhausted. “Woozy.”

“How much pain are you feeling?”

Yixing rolls his shoulders and neck, his ankles. “Not much yet, actually.” He slumps. God, he’s so drained. He rests his head on Baekhyun’s shoulder and takes a deep breath. “Fuck, you wore me out.”

Giggling, Baekhyun kisses Yixing’s hair and nestles his head against it. It takes a moment for him to softly ask, “You’re okay? Was it enough?”

Yixing swallows thickly. “Yeah. Thanks, Baekhyunnie.”

~*~

Two bottles of water and an indulgent midnight snack later, they’re both laying in bed, blanketed in comfortable silence.

It’s a little easier to think about his mom, somehow. Maybe Yixing is just exhausted enough now, he doesn’t know, but normally the silence is a looming predator waiting to strike, would allow his dark thoughts room to play and grow. But rather than thinking about his mom’s death, he finds himself reminiscing about his time in Changsha before she died.

“You know I wanna open my own dance studio one day?” Yixing murmurs up at the ceiling.

“Hm?” Baekhyun scoots closer, idly playing with Yixing’s hair. “Really?”

Yixing hums. “I double-majored in dance and business in college here in Seoul. I moved back to China to be with my mom and started giving lessons to kids in my old neighborhood, and as simple as it was, it was so fulfilling. I knew immediately that I wanted to open my own place. I want to cultivate this space where kids can express their creativity, where they can feel safe, no matter what walk of life they come from.”

Baekhyun’s phone buzzes on the nightstand, startling Yixing out of his hazy monologue. He doesn't know why he just told Baekhyun all of that. “Sorry,” Baekhyun breathes. He grabs his phone but doesn't look at it, focusing all of his attention back on Yixing. “So… now you’re managing the gym at SM.”

Sighing, Yixing nods. “A friend got me the job. I worked at a gym part-time in Changsha, to help make ends meet over there. I just… Right now, this job is the only chance I have at opening my studio someday. I make an unfathomable amount of money so I rented the cheapest apartment I could find and I put most of what I make in savings.”

“That’s admirable.”

“Are you sure you don’t mean ‘stupid’?”

Baekhyun frowns. “Why would it be stupid? I don't think it’s stupid.”

“The only person who’s ever fully supported my dance studio plans is my- my mom.” Yixing swallows around the lump in his throat. “ At least as far as family and the people back home go. People just don't think it’s a reliable dream, I guess.”

“You know what I think?” Baekhyun murmurs, pressing a sweet kiss to Yixing’s cheek.

“Hm?”

He leans down to murmur in Yixing’s ear, “I think you should always work toward doing what would make you happiest, no matter what anyone else says.”

Yixing shuts his eyes for fear of tears welling up in them while Baekhyun trails kisses down his neck, scratches his nails along his scalp. It’s too comforting, too comfortable.

And then Baekhyun’s phone buzzes again, against Yixing’s ribs where it’s being held and Baekhyun makes a soft sound, like he forgot that he was supposed to check it.

Yixing’s eyes crack open when Baekhyun freezes against him, to find him staring at his phone in something akin to shock. Slowly, his fingers pick up an arrhythmic pace in Yixing’s hair again as he responds to whatever was on his phone with one thumb, and then reaches over Yixing to put it back on the nightstand.

His now free hand cups Yixing’s face suddenly, turning it to face him and seemingly searching, though Yixing doesn't know what for. “Are you sure you don't wanna talk, Xing?” Baekhyun murmurs.

Yixing just deflects, “We were just talking.”

“You know what I mean.”

Why does it feel like Baekhyun suddenly knows? Like he can read everything on Yixing’s face? “I don't need to bother you.”

“We’re friends, Yixing. Remember? Maybe we weren’t when we started this but we’re friends now and I--we can be here for each other, can’t we?”

All Yixing hears in his head is friends friends friends and he’s never hated himself more.

They don’t talk much after that, in fact, but Baekhyun continues playing with Yixing’s hair, humming a tune Yixing’s never heard, and before Yixing knows it, he can't keep his eyes open any longer.

~*~

He jolts awake later, a few hours later according to his phone, and takes a moment to remember his surroundings, startled by a pleasant hum thrumming against the back of his neck.

Shivering, Yixing registers the arm comfortably thrown around him, the leg tossed over his own. Baekhyun’s lips part against his neck as he inhales deeply, then makes a soft sound when he exhales, the air tickling Yixing’s neck. He thinks that’s what woke him up, a deep breath like that. Baekhyun must have just settled his mouth there or something, he must have shifted to get more comfortable, clinging to Yixing in his sleep like this is what they do, like they do this. Sleep together. Just… sleep.

With a nervous gulp, Yixing does his best to extricate himself from Baekhyun’s apparent octopus limbs as quickly as possible, miraculously not jostling him too much. Baekhyun curls around Yixing’s pillow and makes another soft sound as he presses his cheek to it.

Yixing forces himself to stop staring, wincing at the pain shooting through his limbs while he quietly gathers his things, breaths shallow as he slips from the room and leaves the warmth behind.

He chooses to forget that these moments tonight with Baekhyun had felt so real.

~*~

The next few days are a blur, hazy--as if Yixing is recovering from That Day--and before he knows it, it’s Christmas Eve.

“Hyung!”

Yixing peeks over his shoulder, hand on the handle of his car door in the SM parking garage. They only had to work until noon today, and Yixing wants to nap. “Hey, Jongdae-yah,” he says as warmly as he can in weather so cold. Yixing forgot his gloves at home, so he sticks his hands back in his pockets as he turns to face his friend. “What’s up?”

“I wanted to ask you something!”

“Ask away.”

“What are you doing tomorrow?”

“On Christmas?”

“Yeah, on Christmas.” Jongdae chuckles.

“Um.” Yixing tries not to blanch. He doesn’t have plans. Why would he? He’s all alone here, and doesn't really have anyone to fly back home to for a few days. There’s Yifan and Luhan, and their families but it just… didn’t feel right this year. The closest Yixing has to “plans” is to maybe go around dropping off Christmas gifts, at his friends’ homes.

Jongdae smiles softly. “Why don't you come over, huh? Jun and me are gonna be cooking way too much food and we can watch cheesy Christmas movies!”

“Ah, that’s--” Yixing knows he’s an emotional wreck when he nearly tears up on the spot. “That’s really kind, Jongdae-yah, but I don't want to intrude on your holiday together.”

“Oh shut up and accept, Yixing!” Jongdae laughs. “I mean, if you really don't want to, that’s totally fine, but I promise you’re not like, ruining our day or anything by joining us! We like company on Christmas, really.”

After a moment, Yixing smiles.

So Yixing spends Christmas Eve in his tiny apartment, eating ramyun and wrapping presents, singing along to some random Chinese Christmas Special he found on TV. He wraps everything with care, sitting on the floor against his couch. Double checks that everything is still in good condition. A Gudetama t-shirt for Jongdae, a book for Junmyeon, earmuffs for Chanyeol, etc.

He pulls the last gift onto his lap, staring down at it. His fingers stroke the material mindlessly. Cashmere. It’s just as soft as the one he and Baekhyun ruined on their first night together. Same color. Maroon.

Sighing, he places it in the clothes box he acquired and wraps it with care, just like the others.

And on Christmas Day, Yixing wakes up bright and early, before his alarm. He’s always been an early riser on Christmas. He fixes himself breakfast, whips up a dessert pudding his mother always used to make him, loads it and his friends’ gifts into his car around lunchtime, and then he’s finally on his way to Jongdae and Junmyeon’s.

The trip up to their penthouse is precarious, with Yixing delicately balancing Jongdae and Junmyeon’s gifts and his dessert the whole way there. The elevator had been easy, an attendant had pressed the button for him, but their penthouse door? Yixing just sort of… kicks it, in lieu of knocking like a civil person.

The door cracks open and laughter filters into Yixing’s ears, saccharine, dripping through him like honey--

He and Baekhyun stand there staring at each other in poorly concealed shock. Oh god, did Yixing show up at Baekhyun’s place on accident?! He had been pretty zoned out when driving. But Baekhyun looks delectable, Yixing realizing with shocking clarity that it’s the first time he’s ever seen him not wearing a cashmere sweater (or naked.) Instead, he’s in a soft blue button-up that accentuates his broad shoulders and dark, almost black fitted jeans. His bare toes are curling into the carpet by the time Yixing’s gaze drifts that far down. It looks like Baekhyun is blushing when their eyes meet again.

And then Jongdae’s warm voice calls out to him excitedly, “Yixing~!” and the weird staring contest between the two at the door ends.

“Oh, god,” Baekhyun laughs. “Let me help you. Here…” He takes the dessert bowl, which rids Yixing of having to balance, and he smiles.

“Thanks.”

Baekhyun smiles warmly at him. “Merry Christmas.”

“Merry Christmas.”

Baekhyun turns his back and the gifts in Yixing’s hands are carefully taken, just in time for a body to crash into his. “Merry Christmas, Xing!” Jongdae exclaims in his ear. Yixing chuckles and returns the greeting, and the hug. “I’m so glad you came!”

Jongdae lets him go and Junmyeon walks back over, having set the gifts down, engulfing Yixing in a much gentler hug. “We both are,” he says.

Yixing feels warm once he’s let go and can't help the way his gaze drifts over to Baekhyun as he reenters the room, presumably from the kitchen.

Baekhyun hugs him, too, and Yixing blames the extra warmth on his cheeks on standing too close to the space heater.

~*~

“So…” Jongdae says. Yixing raises his brows at him. He and Jongdae are in the kitchen, preparing the cluster of desserts they all contributed to bring them to the living room. “Did…” Jongdae checks over his shoulder, then lowers his voice. Yixing hears Baekhyun’s laugh echo across the penthouse. “Did Baek take okay care of you the other day?”

Yixing’s hands freeze where they're piling cookies onto a tray. “What?”

“When you were--” Jongdae says. “Your mom’s anniversary. I should've been there for you. I’m so sorry--”

“Dae.”

Jongdae shakes his head. “Anyway. Did he treat you okay? He’s not a bad guy, but he can't see past his dick sometimes.”

“How’d you know I went to see him?”

“He texted me. Asked me if I knew what was wrong…”

“And you told him?” Flashbacks of comforting whispers and caresses fill Yixing’s vision.

Jongdae bites his lip. “Should I not have? I’m so sorry, Xing, I just didn't want him to end up being a jerk.”

“I-It’s okay.” Yixing flashes his friend a smile. “Really. He was--nice.”

“Nice.”

Yixing smiles wryly. “You want me to get into the dirty details?”

“You don't really have to.” Jongdae chuckles, reaching over and touching Yixing’s bare wrist. He’s wearing a couple of bracelets on his other, but this one doesn't fail to show the faint bruising from a few days ago.

“Ah.” Yixing pulls his sleeves back down self-consciously. He’d pushed them up to handle the food, not even thinking…

“So he was nice. Anything else?”

Yixing squints down at his tray of cookies. “What are you getting at, Jongdae?”

A laugh. “Nothing, nothing. Sorry. I really just wanted to make sure you’re okay.”

“I’m okay.” Yixing smiles more genuinely this time. “Thanks to you guys.”

“Aww hyung!”

~*~

“Where’s Baekhyun?” Yixing accidentally asks out loud when he returns from a bathroom break to find the space they'd been sharing on the couch empty.

Junmyeon rolls his head along the couch to eye him almost knowingly, not that there’s even anything to know, and says, “He just said he’d be right back.” He shrugs. “I think he just went to his car.”

Yixing hums noncommittally and sinks back down into his spot on the couch next to Jongdae, a Baekhyun-sized space on his other side.

The day has been really… nice, so far. They'd spent a lot of time on the floor, using the coffee table as a makeshift space for them to feast, chatting amiably all the while. It felt like… well, like having a family again, even if just for those moments, his and Baekhyun’s knees touching, Baekhyun and Jongdae piling various foods on Yixing’s plate with a, try this, hyung. Oh try this while you’re at it. And this!

Things only started feeling eerily like a double date once all four of them decided to squeeze on the couch together to let their food settle before exchanging gifts. Though Yixing supposes he doesn't completely mind it, if only because he has no doubt that if he’d been alone next to an extra snuggly couple on Christmas Day, loneliness would have stricken him hard.

But instead, he had the warmth of Baekhyun pressed against his side, Baekhyun’s hand picking aimlessly at Yixing’s cardigan, teasing, gossipy murmurs in his ear about their friends.

It’s different. In a good way, Yixing decides. Because while he and Baekhyun have spent hours chatting away between and after various rounds of sex, they've never actually hung out together without the pretense of just that, sex, completely skipping over the “friends” part of “friends with benefits.” Yixing likes the idea of having a genuine friend in Baekhyun. It’s… well, it’s nice, dammit.

The front door gently kicks open, having been left cracked, and Baekhyun reenters balancing three wrapped gifts in his arms.

Yixing hurries over to help take one of the gifts for him. “This feels familiar,” Baekhyun murmurs.

Yixing starts to laugh, but happens to glance down at the gift in his hands. ‘Yixing’ is written in neat, pretty scrawl on the gift tag. He peers back up at Baekhyun to see he’s looking at it too, nervous. “Did you know I was going to be here?” Yixing asks without thinking.

Baekhyun chuckles, then. “No. But all my gifts are loaded in my car. Convenient, right?”

“Ah,” Yixing does laugh now. “Luckily, so are mine.”

Baekhyun tilts his head curiously, but Yixing merely brings the gift over to the tree and announces he’ll be right back.

“Take your coat,” Junmyeon insists, but the words die on his tongue when Baekhyun is already handing Yixing’s coat to him.

By the time Yixing makes it back, his friends are already spread out around the coffee table again, each next to a small stack of gifts. Yixing grins when they all warmly greet him as if he’d been gone for days and not just a few minutes, and gently sets his gift for Baekhyun on the appropriate pile, ruffling Baekhyun’s hair as he steps behind him to get to his apparently designated spot next to the man. Baekhyun whines, but by the time Yixing has settled is beaming at him, so he knows better.

The official unwrapping of the first gift brings chaos, despite the fact they're four, mature, grown-ups.

Except there’s chaos, and then there’s Baekhyun.

Jongdae is screaming about some gadget Baekhyun got him, Junmyeon and Yixing cackling at him, but Yixing halts when he realizes Baekhyun isn't paying attention. He’s staring down at his lap, cheeks raised in a smile, subtly petting the fabric of the sweater Yixing got him.

Baekhyun meets his eyes suddenly and he laughs. “Thanks,” he breathes, and leans over and pecks Yixing’s cheek.

“Yah! Why does Yixing get cheek kisses?!” Jongdae yells.

Yixing teases, “Why shouldn't Yixing get cheek kisses, huh?”

“Yixing got me the best gift, Dae-yah,” Baekhyun adds matter-of-factly.

“You haven't even opened your other gifts, Baekhyunnie!”

“I don’t need to to know. That’s how good it is.”

Yixing can feel his cheeks heating up, Junmyeon’s eyes on him while the other two bicker pointlessly. It’s just a sweater. Yixing had seen it in a shop window and couldn’t resist. He had been a participant in ruining the first one, after all. He figured it would be thoughtful and funny and a little sentimental. Baekhyun’s reaction almost makes him wonder if the original sweater had been important to him somehow.

Jongdae and Yixing open each other’s gifts at the same time by chance, and both burst into laughter, too. Yixing had hunted down an old Gudetama t-shirt online; it had been Jongdae’s favorite in college, and Yixing had borrowed it and subsequently ruined it, but never got around to replacing it. It might be five or six years too late, but Yixing couldn’t shake the idea once he had it.

And Jongdae bought him his old favorite album. Michael Jackson’s Thriller. Yixing used to love dancing to it, and, well. Jongdae had accidentally broken it in college.

“We had the same idea, hyung!” Jongdae exclaims, cackling and beaming, holding his t-shirt up against his body. Yixing cradles the album to his chest and beams right back.

Junmyeon gets Yixing a watch, because Yixing’s had broken at a party several weeks ago. Yixing fusses over it for a moment, because it’s nice, in a cashmere sweater nice kind of way, but Junmyeon insists it’s “not as expensive as it looks!” so passionately that Yixing caves and thanks him profusely.

Last comes Baekhyun’s gift.

Yixing is somewhat scared to open it. He hadn’t expected a gift from Baekhyun at all, really, so he has no idea what to expect.

It’s a decently sized box, but once Yixing breaks into it, he realizes there are a few things in it.

“Baekhyunnie can’t stand giving only one thing. He likes to give an assortment,” Jongdae offers.

Yixing hums in acknowledgment and pulls out a blue track jacket. You look so good in blue, Baekhyun says every single time Yixing wears blue, so the color is no surprise. He smiles softly as he observes it; it’s soft to the touch, silky, almost, with a simple white check mark on the sleeve. Next, he pulls out a black, silk tie and has to bite back a laugh.

There’s a note pinned to it that reads, You should wear this to our next party. I have it on good authority that you look good in silk ties, you know.

Yixing glances knowingly at Baekhyun, who bites his lip and raises his eyebrows. Yixing chuckles and pulls out a baseball cap next, black also, with silver hoops looped through the side of the brim.

Reminded me of you, is all the note attached to it says.

The last item is a folder.

Curiously, Yixing brings it into his lap and opens it. There’s a stack of papers on the right side, the first looks like a… property listing?

The left side has a note: I hope I’m not overstepping by doing some research, but I looked up property and building listings in the safest areas of Seoul, and then saved all the ones in a good enough commercial location. I hope it helps at least a little bit in your future search for a place to open your dance studio in.

P.S. One of these buildings is mine, actually. Say the word and I’ll take it off the market for as long as you need, because I believe in you. Merry Christmas, Yixing.

“Baekhyun,” Yixing breathes. He blinks away unexpected tears before turning wide eyes on the man next to him. He’s idly chewing on one of his nails, gaze wary, but Yixing shakes his head and throws himself at him, wrapping his arms around him and hugging him as tight as he can manage, burying his face in Baekhyun’s neck. “Thank you. Thank you.”

He feels Baekhyun go rigid, but he also feels him melt shortly after, familiar hands cradling him close. “Merry Christmas,” Baekhyun whispers.

A few moments after causing a scene, Yixing and Baekhyun have scooted back enough to lean against the couch, huddled together and glancing over the folder of building listings. Baekhyun has the sweater in his lap, fingers idly playing with and petting the material.

“How much did you spend on this?” he murmurs after a short moment of silence.

Too much. But Yixing shakes his head, chuckling. “It’s bad form to reveal how much you spent on a gift.”

“It’s really nice,” Baekhyun frowns at him. “Nicer than the other one.”

“Is it?” Yixing tilts his head. “I thought they were kind of the same.”

Now, Baekhyun grins. “This one’s nicer.”

Just as he leans his weight against Yixing, commotion erupts behind them when Jongdae hops the back of the couch and sinks down right behind them. He cackles, singing, “Hyungs~!”

They both look over their shoulders at him, gazes trailing upward simultaneously when they realize he’s holding something above their heads.

Mistletoe.

Yixing groans, Baekhyun laughs, and then Yixing laughs and Baekhyun groans, because Jongdae starts humming what sounds terrifyingly like the wedding march song and shakes the mistletoe above their heads, clearly not intending to go anywhere until the pair on the floor do what he wants.

Yixing smirks at Baekhyun when they look at each other, and Baekhyun laughs again. “I mean, it’s not like they don't know we do much, much more than just kiss, right?” he asks, before throwing his arm around Yixing’s neck and yanking him close until their lips are crashing together.

It’s fluid, well-practiced, and completely telling of how much they enjoy kissing each other as Baekhyun’s lips automatically part and Yixing’s tongue automatically slips between them. Just as Yixing’s fingers slide into Baekhyun’s soft hair, their friends simultaneously clear their throats.

They don't part immediately, instead slowing down into something much sweeter, much more reserved, gently sucking on each other’s lips, Baekhyun’s thumb caressing the lobe of Yixing’s ear.

Yixing carefully pulls back, slowly blinking his eyes open to see Baekhyun’s still closed, lips still parted, and his cheeks dusted with pink. Then Baekhyun opens his own eyes, hazy and content-looking.

“That--” Yixing starts to say, but Jongdae cuts him off.

“What the fuck now I gotta kiss my boyfriend. I can't be shown up by two people who aren't even together.” And then he’s leaping across the room and holding the mistletoe above his own head as he tackles Junmyeon with a kiss, Yixing and Baekhyun laughing and leaning into each other naturally, Baekhyun now playing with Yixing’s fingers instead of the new cashmere sweater.

“Yah, Jongdae!” Yixing exclaims, mirth evident when he adds, “Why discriminate against us, huh? What if I want to kiss you, too!?”

“Xing~” Jongdae whines.

“Yah and I wanna kiss Junmyeonnie,” Baekhyun chimes in, making kissing noises in his general direction.

Junmyeon flinches back, even though there’s a table between himself and Baekhyun. “No. Nope. Don’t think so.”

But he should've known that would only egg Baekhyun on, who jumps up with the most mischievous of grins, snatches the mistletoe from Jongdae, and falls to his knees next to Junmyeon, throwing his arms around the man’s neck and obnoxiously forcing his lips against his cheek, the same kissing sounds from before filling the room.

“Junmyeonnie!” Baekhyun whines while Junmyeon tries to shove him away. “Junmyeonnie~ kiss me~!”

“In your dreams, Baekhyunnie,” Junmyeon forces out, getting a hand over Baekhyun’s mouth and shoving his face away.

“Actually, I certainly seem to recall you begging--”

“Oh my god, shut up right now--”

Baekhyun uses Junmyeon’s mortification to his advantage and stretches his neck to peck him noisily on the lips, letting himself be shoved away now that he’s gotten what he wanted. He winks at Yixing, who just shakes his head and laughs too, despite vividly remembering that Baekhyun told him he’s slept with Jongdae and Junmyeon before, but he’s too entranced by the crescent moon shapes of Baekhyun’s eyes as he laughs so joyfully at Junmyeon’s disgruntledness that he forgets all over again. It’s not the first time Yixing has noticed how much the two best friends really love each other, but it catches him off guard every time he gets a glimpse, because Baekhyun is always so closed off, so seemingly distant from everyone to keep up this Important Rich Guy facade.

But Yixing likes this Baekhyun the best.

Jongdae announces, then, that it’s time to watch a movie and to stop harassing his boyfriend, and Baekhyun hands out cheek kisses to all three of them as they clean up the mess they made unwrapping presents.

~*~

“Mm, I smell hot chocolate,” Yixing observes several minutes later as he walks into the kitchen for a bottle of water. And also maybe to see what Baekhyun’s up to, but. Semantics.

Baekhyun grins at him over his shoulder. “Your nose is correct.”

Opening the refrigerator, Yixing pulls out a bottle of water before moving to stand next to the other man. “That’s… a mighty big thermos you have there.”

A black container sits on the counter, and it’s got to be the size of Baekhyun’s head, but he’s steadily filling it to the top with hot chocolate. Baekhyun laughs. “Share with me, then.”

Yixing makes a show of sniffing the air and giving a pleased hum. “I guess I can do that.”

With a grin, Baekhyun throws in a handful of mini marshmallows before twisting the top and sealing in the heat. “Could you do something else?”

“Hm?”

“Kiss me?”

Yixing hesitates for only a second. He knows he should ask why, and it’s on the tip of his tongue, really, but Baekhyun is blinking up at him so innocently and blushing and somehow Yixing understands that he wants a kiss like the one they shared earlier. So instead of speaking, Yixing smiles softly and maneuvers Baekhyun by the hips until Yixing is pressing him into the counter, cups his jaw and only waits long enough for Baekhyun’s arms to encircle his waist, and for his eyes to fall shut in anticipation before he slots their lips together.

It’s sweeter than the last one, though that could be because Baekhyun’s mouth tastes like the sugary mini marshmallows, but it's something else too, something deeper. They're not putting on a show for their friends this time, yet they're also not hungrily working toward a relentless fuck. It’s genuinely slow and warm and butterfly inducing.

Terrifying.

“I’m starting the movie with or without you guys!” Jongdae yells from the living room. Yixing and Baekhyun’s lips part with a hesitant smack.

They stare at each other for too long before Baekhyun murmurs, “Just a little longer,” and reaches out to pull Yixing’s face back toward his, sliding his fingers into the back of Yixing’s hair as they kiss each other silly, steal each other’s breath.

Yixing hears footsteps behind him, but Baekhyun whimpers softly under his breath and Yixing forgets about everything else for another moment, more concerned with making Baekhyun feel as warm as he does right now.

“Baek,” he whispers into his mouth after some time. “Baek.”

“Yixing.”

“We should--”

“Oh. Yeah.”

Baekhyun steals one more soft kiss, and finally Yixing manages to step away, bleary and confused, but warm and somehow sated, too.

“Y-You should go back first,” Baekhyun murmurs, turning back to his hot chocolate thermos. “I’m just going to add some more marshmallows to this real quick.”

Yixing doesn't really know what to say other than to point out that their friends are probably already suspicious, so there’s no point of the school-grade leaving the room at separate times trick, but saying it seems moot, so he just squeezes Baekhyun’s hip before turning and exiting the kitchen.

He looks back at the last minute and sees Baekhyun’s head and shoulders droop, like he’s exhausted and it gives Yixing pause.

What did they just do?

Things are tense between them for a good portion of the movie, though they do share the hot chocolate as planned and Baekhyun continuously grins at him over the thermos and presses against his side, but it feels like he’s overcompensating for something. Yixing just isn't sure what.

Halfway through the movie though, Baekhyun yawns from his place against Yixing’s shoulder. Yixing murmurs, “Tired?”

Baekhyun hums. “Yeah. Got up really early to drive from Busan this morning.”

“Family?” He wonders why Baekhyun’s not spending the day with them.

Baekhyun just sort of grunts his affirmation and slips his hand between Yixing’s shirt and cardigan. Yixing can feel the cold of it seeping through his shirt and frowns before reaching behind him for the blanket draped over the couch. He shakes it out and does his best with one hand to cover them both. Baekhyun, sluggish, removes his hand from Yixing’s clothes to properly cover his feet next to him, then promptly puts it right back, snuggling even closer than before, practically snuffling into Yixing’s neck.

Yixing can feel someone’s gaze on him and turns his head to find Junmyeon watching them carefully. Junmyeon raises his brows, curious, and Yixing faces the television screen again.

Nothing to see here.

Chapter Text

“Chanyeol.”

The man across from Yixing grunts around his drink straw. “Sorry, my name is Kyungsoo.”

Yixing kicks him under the table, ignoring the other man’s instant mumble about respecting hyungs. “We’re not at work. Tell me what’s going on. I feel like I haven't seen Chanyeollie smile in over a month.”

“It’s still office hours.”

But Yixing sees how he forces away a grimace and frowns. “You turned him down, didn’t you?”

Kyungsoo just stares resolutely down at his menu, and as if saved by the bell, they’re almost immediately interrupted by their waitress. They politely give their orders and hand over their menus, and Yixing leans back in his chair, scrutinizing his friend. He doesn’t need an answer to know, not really. Not if he really thinks through a specific interaction he had with Chanyeol a while back. A little over a month ago, the night Baekhyun returned from a week long business trip and Chanyeol hardly said a word all night, curled up on the floor on either Yixing or Sehun’s laps.

“Chanyeollie?” Yixing had just wrapped his hand around the doorknob of Baekhyun’s front door when he realized someone was sitting in the living room, in the dark.

Chanyeol hummed, but otherwise made no movement to acknowledge another presence, so Yixing walked over to him, his worry from earlier in the night resurfacing.

“Are you okay, kiddo?”

“Fine,” Chanyeol grunted. He swayed a little in the darkness, and Yixing pushed a hand into the kid’s hair, to soothe, and to steady. “Drank a little.”

“I can see that.” Yixing nodded, scratching his nails along his scalp. “You’ve been sad all night. Wanna talk about it?”

“No.”

“Oh.”

Chanyeol sighed. “Can I ask you something, though?”

“Of course.”

“You and Baekhyun hyung…”

Yixing froze. “Uh…”

“You’re together?”

“What? No. No, we aren’t.”

“Oh.” Chanyeol looked back down at his lap. “I mean, I didn’t think both of you would keep that from me, but you just… you both looked… smitten, I guess.”

“Smitten.” Yixing rubbed a hand down his face. “Why are you asking anyway?”

Chanyeol shook his head slowly. “I guess I just thought if you two were-... I hoped… Ah, it doesn’t matter, hyung. I won’t keep you from heading home.”

The realization that this could be about Kyungsoo had made Yixing sick, but his priority became getting Chanyeol home safe. “Come on, Yeollie. I’ll bring you home.”

“I don't wanna talk about it,” Chanyeol whispers.

“You don't have to. Just let me get you home safe.”

Kyungsoo’s voice is quieter than usual when it cuts into Yixing’s thoughts, “Yes, I turned him down.”

“Yah, Kyungsoo!” Yixing kicks him again. “Why would you do that?!”

But Kyungsoo doesn't even flinch on impact this time, his subtle frown as he stares off into space transforming into something sadder by the second. “You said yourself that it might not be worth the risk.”

They smile in thanks as drinks are placed in front of them, but both fall back into various states of distress as soon as the waitress turns away again. “Soo.” Yixing runs a hand down his face. “I know I said that, but I can literally pinpoint exactly what day you two broke it off because you've both been acting off ever since.” He sighs. “If it makes you both so unhappy, I think maybe it is worth the risk. Your career is important, obviously, but your happiness should come first.”

“I just don’t want--” Kyungsoo pauses, brows furrowing as he pulls his ringing phone from inside his jacket. “It’s Soojung.”

“The CEO’s secretary?”

Nodding, Kyungsoo answers his phone. His expression darkens as Soojung’s voice rattles off in his ear; Yixing can hear her, but not what she’s saying. He thinks they’ll probably have to take their lunch to-go, though.

Kyungsoo hangs up. “Mr. Byun Sr. wants to see you.”

Yixing promptly chokes on his drink. “Me? Why?” He’s seen the CEO twice in his six months at SM; the man has never made an effort to meet with him before. He doesn’t meet with anybody, usually.

“Remember your altercation with Mr. Li?”

Groaning, Yixing slumps in his seat. “How could I fucking forget?”

“Yes, well. As the manager of International Relations, apparently he wants you fired.”

Their food is set down between them, but neither smile at their waitress this time. Yixing’s too busy feeling the way his blood runs cold at the thought. He wants you fired. Fired. What would he even do if he was fired? His plans would be torn to shreds, his savings would dwindle so quickly-- “For that?” is all Yixing can spit out.

It had happened just a few days ago; Yixing and Jongin had been getting more and more recognition from the endless slew of SM employees for running such a nice operation on the third floor. Overall health in the building has gone up apparently, productivity has increased, so naturally more people became interested, the big wigs of the company.

But the manager of International Relations specifically is a snotty, overweight man who would yell at a cashier for a coupon being out of date. He gets breathless riding the elevator and expects everyone around him to bend to his will. Yixing refused to submit sweet, innocent Jongin to such a monstrosity, so he took him on as a client instead. It’s impossible for me to lose weight, the man had said to Yixing. A kid like you ain’t gonna change that.

Yixing, despite his annoyance, had remained remarkably patient throughout Mr. Li’s incessant bumbling about not knowing why using his “rare breaks” to work out would actually benefit him, his accusing of all the people who told him to try out the gym saying they were only judging him. Yixing was exhausted just listening to him talk, but he remained patient until the end.

“Why don’t we ease into it, then?” Yixing had smiled at the man.

“Ease into it.”

Yixing nodded. “We can start off meeting three times a week to walk fifteen minutes on the treadmill. It’ll ease us into expanding our health interests and allow you to get used to it.”

Mr. Li might as well have exploded.

He was infuriated that Yixing had suggested walking on the treadmill “so much” and Yixing had to force himself not to mention that he’s never started someone out with so little. The gym had frozen in tandem at Mr. Li’s raised voice, gaped at his utter ridiculousness. Yixing apologized, offered him the opportunity to create his own plan, Mr. Li seemed appeased enough and left.

But now this.

Kyungsoo is staring blankly at the table between them in a way Yixing has come to learn means he’s pissed off, and that alone eases Yixing’s worry a little.

“So what do I do?” he asks.

“I’m going with you. And I’m calling Kim Jongin and Oh Sehun. I caught the tail-end of the altercation, but they both witnessed the whole thing. You can’t get fired for this.”

Yixing certainly hopes not.

~*~

He regrets the thought of Mr. Li breaking a sweat on the elevator, because now Yixing thinks he’s breaking a sweat on it. It’s a long, long way up.

Not that Yixing isn't used to it; he’s taken the trip many times to visit Kyungsoo’s office, of course, but his fate hanging by a thread suddenly makes it seem ten times longer and more stressful than usual.

He and Kyungsoo step off of the elevator and a door slams. The one at the end of the hall to the right that Yixing’s never seen anyone come in or out of. So someone does use that office.

“Ignore him,” Kyungsoo snarls. “Melodramatic piece of--”

A memory clicks into place. “Was that… the CEO’s son?” It’s the only person Yixing has ever seen Kyungsoo get so worked up about, anyway.

“Yes. Probably angry daddy’s not paying attention to him. Come on.”

They find Sehun and Jongin seated in the empty chairs inside Soojung’s open office door. She smiles timidly when she sees Kyungsoo and Yixing.

“How bad is it?” Kyungsoo asks as a supportive hand wraps around Yixing’s fingers, Sehun, and Jongin shines wide, terrified eyes on him. Poor kid.

“It should be fine, right?” Sehun murmurs while Soojung and Kyungsoo talk, squeezing Yixing’s hand. “That old sack of potatoes was out of line. Plus I could hear Ba--”

“Yixing, we should go in.” Kyungsoo sighs. “Sehun, Jongin, stay here so that we can page you through Soojung if we need you.”

Everyone nods, and Yixing lets himself be led into the CEO’s office.

~*~

> baekhyun: come over, please.
> yixing: Yeah, okay.

Yixing doesn’t care to question how easy it is to bend to Baekhyun’s will. Though he thinks he could use some bending, after the day he’s had.

Yixing stuffs his half-eaten dinner in the fridge and makes the drive to the other side of the city.

> baekhyun: spare key is on top of the doorframe.

Yixing frowns at the new text as he steps from his car and heads for the elevator. Something seems… off.

Regardless, he finds himself smoothing down his shirt and brushing his fingers through his hair until it’s perfectly messy before he uses the spare key to enter the apartment.

The silence almost overwhelms him. The empty space that is the penthouse without an obscene number of people here for a party has been daunting every time Yixing has been here alone, but it’s never this quiet. Baekhyun is always there, in his face, grinning and chatting Yixing’s ear off. There’s always a TV playing somewhere in the home, though Yixing suspects Baekhyun never actually watches it.

But this. This is one hundred percent, completely eerie silence.

He walks the path to Baekhyun’s bedroom cautiously, a little concerned, but the relief is palpable when he gently pushes on the cracked open door and sees Baekhyun in perfectly good health.

Physically, at least.

He’s sitting on the floor, back against his bed, face blank, a little angry even. But he’s beautiful in all his dark glory, dressed in all black all the way up to the kohl lining his eyes, his nearly blonde hair a curly mess atop his head.

“You got here quicker than I expected,” he murmurs, his eyes piercing as they meet Yixing’s. His voice is low, hoarse, and it stirs desire within Yixing even though a part of him thinks Baekhyun’s voice could only have gotten that way from something like screaming or crying or both.

Yixing fully enters the room, still cautious. “Well. I’m here.”

“Yeah.”

Baekhyun’s gaze falls back to the floor and Yixing feels at a loss. They’re friends, Baekhyun said they could comfort each other, but Yixing doesn't know exactly what Baekhyun, who’s always the brightest light in the room, needs in this specific situation.

So Yixing opts for boldness, for their usual back and forth because that’s surely the reason Baekhyun summoned him. With a resolute breath, he crosses the room and sinks to the floor, straddling Baekhyun’s lap and cupping his head in his hands. Yixing searches his eyes, but there’s nothing there. “Do you want to talk about it?”

“No.”

“Okay.” Yixing masks his worry by kissing him, and lets himself get lost in the distraction of it, of Baekhyun’s soft lips and the way they’re the most responsive thing on him.

Even Baekhyun’s hands merely rest on Yixing’s hips, fists clenched around the fabric of his shirt, unmoving.

“What do you think?” Yixing asks a hair breathlessly, slapping a smirk on his face. “Maybe tonight you should tie my hands to my ankles like you said you want to.”

Baekhyun’s eyes meet his with a spark of interest, but it’s gone before Yixing can light a match under it.

“Or maybe you should just pin me to the wall and fuck me sensele--”

“Ride me.”

It gives Yixing pause. Not that he’s ever opposed to the idea, but their dynamic very much puts Yixing in charge despite being “submissive.” AKA, he doesn't really take orders from Baekhyun. He ignores the fact that he literally dropped everything to obey Baekhyun’s demand just earlier.

So he presses on. “But wouldn't you like that, Baekhyun? Pressing me into the wall, fucking me good. Hard. Getting out all your anger and frustration that way?”

Baekhyun doesn't respond.

“And maybe you finally want your tongue in my ass, right? I bet you’d like licking out your own c--”

“Yixing. I said ride me.”

There’s a finality to Baekhyun’s tone that Yixing’s never heard before, and a shiver trickles up his spine at the sound. A good shiver, he thinks. The way Baekhyun looks and sounds has made his dick perk with interest since he walked in, and Baekhyun suddenly taking control makes his interest a little more obvious.

“Fine,” Yixing says and pulls open the drawer on the bedside table a few feet from them, retrieving lube. “Then prep me with your pretty fingers.”

Baekhyun doesn't move to catch or pick up the bottle of lube when Yixing drops it between them purposefully. In fact, he lets go of Yixing altogether. “Drape yourself over that chair and prep yourself.”

For a moment, Yixing doesn't move. His stare is challenging but Baekhyun’s is unwavering. The options are clear.

Do it, or leave.

And Yixing doesn't want to leave. Why would he want to leave when the sex is always too good with Baekhyun to pass up?

Why would he leave when Baekhyun needs him?

He looks behind him at the chair in question. A fancy, burgundy armchair that Yixing has always thought would only ever be found in a rich person’s home. It won't be comfortable; he’ll have to lie across the arms to achieve the desired display. He’s also going to dirty the upholstery with precome.

Without meeting Baekhyun’s eyes again, Yixing slips from his lap--grabbing the bottle of lube as he goes--and turns his back to him. The removal of his shirt is slow, intentionally sexy; his pants and underwear simultaneously come down in one fell swoop.

The fleeting caress to his bare ankle feels frighteningly intimate somehow, so Yixing ignores it and gets started.

He drapes himself across the chair, as told, one of the arms digging into his stomach, his head resting just shy of the other, which he grips with his hand not coated in lube. His ass is its own exhibit in this position. But the angle is so awkward and overall uncomfortable; Yixing hopes he can make this quick.

Yixing shuts his eyes and focuses, gently caressing his own rim with an index finger, and his hips jolt a little in anticipation. The friction of his dick against the chair isn't the worst thing, so he uses that, tiny little ruts to stimulate himself as he works his first finger into himself.

By the time he’s eased his second finger in and is panting a little at the sensation, he finally opens his eyes to meet Baekhyun’s again. He catches him pulling at the collar of his fancy button down as if he’s hot, and his pretty fingers are gently playing along the bulge of his pants. He’s still dark, angry, but he’s more alert and offers one encouraging nod. Good, it seems to say.

Yixing’s eyes roll back with pleasure when he just barely grazes his prostate in time with a thrust against the chair and he moans prettily, just the way Baekhyun likes to hear. The man on the floor whimpers, then. He wants to touch, no doubt, but he set this game, so Yixing will follow through.

But his wrist starts to hurt as he works on sliding his third finger into himself. His wanton pants for air turn frustrated and he gently pleads, “Can I move? Can I change positions?”

“Are you hurting?” The hint of genuine concern is the most alive Baekhyun has sounded thus far. Yixing just nods, and then so does he.

Exhaling a breath of relief, Yixing eases his fingers from his ass and carefully sits up, wincing at the pain that blooms from the stiffness along his body. He inhales deeply and massages his wrist, contemplating his next move.

He assesses the chair before him, the width, what position would be best. Then he settles on putting his back to Baekhyun, climbing onto the chair and spreading his knees as far as he can, resting his forehead against the back. He doesn't like that he won't be able to watch Baekhyun watching him, but it’s not like it would be the first time he’s gone blind for their sexual encounters.

But this way, Baekhyun really gets to see everything, and if Yixing listens closely enough, he can hear the escalation of Baekhyun’s breaths as Yixing sinks his fingers back inside himself, tugging on his dick to make the glide easier.

He starts fucking himself on his hand, holding his aching wrist as still as he can and thrusting his hips along the length of them, moaning wantonly as sweat starts to drip down his back.

He’s going to regret spending so much time on his knees tonight, but if the dicking is as good as he thinks it’s going to be, he really can't bring himself to care.

By the time he’s good and ready, he’s trembling with need and pleading for Baekhyun under his breath.

“Y-Yixing.”

Yixing stops moving and makes a whimper of acknowledgment.

“Come here.”

Yixing can only nod and stumble from the chair, but he does take a moment to wipe the excess lube on his thigh and give his knees a moment of freedom. He picks up the bottle of lube he dropped on the floor and faces Baekhyun, immediately whimpering again because there’s sweat dripping down his temple and he’s gently stroking himself, cock pulled through the opening of his unbuttoned trousers.

Baekhyun’s not even going to undress for this, is he?

But something about probably ruining his expensive clothing does things to Yixing, so he doesn’t really care.

He tosses the lube at him and gives his knees a little bit longer, massages his damn wrist. He’s definitely going to be sore tomorrow, and from so little effort, too.

Baekhyun ignores the bottle and reaches out, wrapping his hands around the back of Yixing’s legs to pull him closer, hands gliding up reverently, squeezing his ass as Yixing sinks to his knees.

It’s unfair, he thinks, that he’s already undone, naked, sweaty, desperate, while Baekhyun is so seemingly calm, fully dressed and all. But a breath falls against Baekhyun’s lips instead of scrutinizing words as their foreheads knock together and a tapered finger slides into Yixing with practiced ease.

His eyes flutter shut as he says, “Why are you slowing down now? Need you--”

The hand resting on Yixing’s thigh moves, and he opens his eyes to find Baekhyun watching him despite the proximity of their faces; he holds up something next to them and mumbles. “We’re out.”

Yixing looks then and sighs at the empty black box. Condoms. They’re out of condoms. “Oh.” And then, “Does it really matter? It’s- well. It’s not like we’ve been “safe” from the moment we started swallowing each other’s come, right? I get tested regularly--” Though he figures it’s not important to mention he hasn’t gotten tested since he stopped fucking Sehun, because he’s only slept with Baekhyun since, and he just hasn’t had time. A dangerous game, maybe, but.

“I’m okay with it if you are,” Baekhyun inserts just loud enough to drown Yixing’s rambling out, his finger stroking Yixing’s insides gently as if he’s petting his hair instead.

Yixing nods, squirming, and stands on his knees as Baekhyun’s finger leaves him in favor of lubing himself up while Yixing presses their faces close again, Baekhyun’s head in his hands, to mold their mouths together a hair desperately.

Baekhyun guides him down when he’s ready and Yixing sinks down slowly, gripping Baekhyun’s shoulders for purchase. He watches Baekhyun’s throat, his adam’s apple bob as he swallows and clearly withholds his sounds of pleasure.

Once he’s fully seated in Baekhyun’s lap, Yixing takes a moment to adjust and breathe. He unbuttons Baekhyun’s shirt slowly, but one-handed, because Baekhyun has busied himself with massaging Yixing’s sore wrist and trailing kisses down his arm.

Yixing shudders. “You sure you don't want to tie me up?”

Baekhyun shakes his head. “Positive.” Yixing gulps nervously, nearing the end of the line of buttons and Baekhyun adds, “You hurt your wrist. Don’t wanna make it worse.”

They look at each other then, because they both know he only tacked on the excuse as a way to cover his ass, to make things feel less intimate than they somehow are.

Yixing slips his wrist from Baekhyun’s gentle grip and runs his hands up the younger man’s chest, rolling his hips experimentally. The sting is barely present and Baekhyun’s breath hitches.

Who kisses who next is a mystery, but Yixing bites at Baekhyun’s bottom lip hungrily as he raises his hips, then drops them, and revels in the low, gravelly moan it draws from him.

The pace they set is slow, consuming, and Yixing takes advantage of being able to touch, to have actual control over his own actions. He especially likes combing his fingers through Baekhyun’s curly hair and tugging his head back so he can suck a generous bruise onto his neck. He pushes at Baekhyun’s shirt and blazer, wants them gone, but Baekhyun doesn't allow them further than halfway down his arms.

So instead, he tweaks Baekhyun’s nipples and drops wet kisses to his shoulders between moans while Baekhyun runs his hands along the lines of Yixing’s sweat-slick body.

When the pleasure starts building, Yixing sits up, throws his head back, lost, and Baekhyun trails soft kisses up his chest, his hand gliding ahead, splaying across Yixing’s collarbone, thumb digging in near a pressure point.

Yixing prepares himself to be choked, even though they’ve only fleetingly mentioned maybe trying it out some day, but it never comes.

“So good for me,” Baekhyun whispers into his skin.

It’s the only thing he says the entire time.

The lack of Baekhyun’s chatter throws Yixing, makes him feel the need to fill the silence, but instead of praising Baekhyun, or even talking dirty like usual, he finds things like “wanna be good for you” slipping out and it shuts him up because what is even happening?

And Baekhyun never stops looking at him; Yixing can feel the heat of his gaze with every thrust down onto his stupid cock, and even though his knees ache and his thighs burn, he picks up his pace as he dares to meet Baekhyun’s gaze.

Yixing doesn't relent, lives up to the challenge of holding eye contact as they pant and moan in each other’s faces, as Baekhyun rests his head back against the bed and touches Yixing’s neck like he had before, like he’s going to grasp it but comes just shy of following through.

He watches Baekhyun’s eyes droop and his chest heave jerkily--he’s close--and Yixing’s entire body jolts when a hand wraps around his leaking cock, which he can't really believe he had managed to neglect this long.

“Baekhyun,” he breathes, he moans, and Baekhyun pulls his head back up to press their foreheads together, to pant open-mouthed against each other. Yixing moans Baekhyun’s name again and feels the man’s hips jerk under his.

And with just the right twist of Baekhyun’s wrist, Yixing comes, hard, all over Baekhyun’s chest, turning boneless in his release, hips stuttering as his head falls to Baekhyun’s shoulder with a soft cry of pleasure.

He vaguely registers the pulsing of Baekhyun’s dick inside him, and musters enough energy to rock his weak hips a little and to tug the other man’s hair, though Yixing’s head remains a dead weight on his shoulder.

Once Baekhyun’s length is merely twitching weakly, he wraps his arms around Yixing and buries his face in his neck.

Worry creeps back into Yixing’s veins for him. He didn't think anything could bring Baekhyun down. Not this much, not for this long, and definitely not so badly that sex doesn't seem to help him at all.

After a moment of stroking his hair and dotting soft kisses along the side of his face--because Baekhyun and kisses go together like the stars and moon, so surely it’ll help him feel better--Yixing has to move, the pain in his knees and wrist returning now that the waves of his orgasm have subsided. “Baek, I need to move, okay?” he murmurs.

“Yeah. Yeah, sorry.” Baekhyun separates himself but grips Yixing’s hips and helps him carefully slide off of his cock and lap.

Yixing winces, clenches his jaw, his knees throbbing the second he shifts his weight. He wants to sit, but Baekhyun’s come is already dripping from his ass, so sitting isn't the best option at the moment.

Then he realizes his chest is sticky with his own come, transferred from Baekhyun’s hug. “Sh-Shower?” Yixing grimaces, reaching next to Baekhyun and gripping the edge of the bed to help himself up.

But Baekhyun grasps his hand suddenly, eyes a little wide. “Yixing, sit.”

Yixing snorts. “I’m not a dog.”

“Sit down.” A gentle plea.

“Gonna get come on the floor.”

“I don't give a fuck. Sit.”

Yixing sighs. “Yeah, okay.”

He eases himself down, rotates until he’s next to Baekhyun and resting his back against the bed too.

“I’ll be right back,” Baekhyun mumbles. He slips out of his shirt and blazer as he stands, leaving the clothing on the floor, then lets his pants fall while he tucks his dick back into his boxer briefs.

Yixing just stares unabashedly at him. An obscenely beautiful specimen.

It’s a few moments before Baekhyun returns, and he’s bearing gifts.

He hands a bottle of water to Yixing and sits in front of him, setting what looks an awful lot like ice packs on the ground, and bringing a wet rag to Yixing’s chest to quickly clean him up.

Then he spreads Yixing’s legs and scoots between them before twisting to his left and cupping Yixing’s knee, digging his thumb in and beginning to massage it.

“Baek, you don't have to--”

“I know.” But he doesn't stop. Baekhyun is always so good at this, at taking care of him.

Yixing takes a deep breath and relaxes, sipping his water, resting his head against the bed again but keeping his gaze on Baekhyun, never straying from him. There are still drops of sweat along his hairline, his face still flushed from his orgasm. Yixing can’t keep his eyes off him.

And it scares him, because if he really, really thinks about it (he usually doesn’t), Baekhyun only becomes more appealing as a partner each time they meet, and that’s not how this is supposed to happen. They aren't supposed to get attached. Yixing isn’t supposed to get attached--

“Will you stay?” Baekhyun asks suddenly. It’s soft, timid, and he stays focused on Yixing’s knee. “Tonight. Will you stay with me?”

Alarms sound off in Yixing’s head. Dangerous territory. But regardless of his mind’s warnings, he gently runs his fingers through Baekhyun’s hair, grasping his attention, and nods.

Yixing thinks he sees the boy deflate with relief, but maybe he’s mistaken.

Baekhyun molds one of his ice packs to Yixing’s knee, then starts massaging the other. He works in silence. Places the other ice pack. Then he grabs Yixing’s bad wrist and presses Yixing’s palm to his lips. He closes his eyes and gently presses his fingers into the aching limb, lost in his own dark little world.

All Yixing can do is watch him, set his water bottle down, and stroke his hair with his free hand.

He doesn't know how much time passes of them sitting there just like that, in silence, in sadness, because it’s starting to rub off on Yixing, but eventually he tests the pain in his knees and deems them numb enough to shower, so he gently beckons Baekhyun from his lap, who helps him up, and leads him toward the bathroom.

~*~

“What did you do today?” Yixing asks gently as his thumbs wipe at the smudges of kohl beneath Baekhyun’s eyes.

“Some meetings. A photoshoot,” is all that’s answered.

Yixing has so many questions but knows he won't get anything from them, not tonight at least, so he continues on in silence, cleaning the makeup from Baekhyun’s face and gently washing the product from his hair.

All the anger has dissipated from Baekhyun, certainly, but now he blinks up at Yixing with so much sadness that Yixing feels his heart break a little.

He pulls Baekhyun into a hug and loses track of the time they spend under the spray of the shower like that.

“I thought sex would help,” Baekhyun mumbles. It’s almost unintelligible under the noise of the water. “But it’s you.”

Dangerous territory, indeed.

~*~

“I almost lost my job today.”

The sound of Yixing’s sleepy voice cuts through the thick silence between them, as he nestles close behind Baekhyun, wrapping an arm around him. It’s just in time to feel Baekhyun freeze. “What?” he asks stiffly, but he practically melts into Yixing’s embrace just a moment later.

“I’m sorry. I know we don’t talk about work but I just…” Truth be told, Yixing doesn’t know why he brought it up. They were very nearly asleep, settling under the covers of Baekhyun’s luxurious bed, but somehow he thinks Baekhyun would understand. “It scared me,” he whispers, seeking warmth for his nose against the back of Baekhyun’s neck.

Silence settles over them and Yixing has just given up on getting a response from the other man when he whispers, “What happened?”

Yixing hums and tugs the covers further upward before replacing his arm around the body pressed to his. Baekhyun starts playing with his fingers. “You know Mr. Li?”

Baekhyun snorts quietly. “Who doesn’t?”

“His reputation does precede him, doesn’t it?” Yixing chuckles, and settles into the story of what happened, of how Mr. Byun Sr. took Mr. Li’s allegations so seriously, how Yixing literally had to call witnesses in to defend him. “It was just… ridiculous. It was as if I had stolen money from the company or something. But it was frightening, still. For a second I really thought I was going to lose everything.”

Hands pull him closer, lips press against his fingertips. “I’d never let that happen.”

Yixing softly laughs and kisses Baekhyun’s shoulder, teases, “Ah, how admirable, but what say would you even have in the matter, huh?”

Baekhyun doesn’t laugh, and he doesn’t answer. He continues holding Yixing’s hand hostage, and eventually falls asleep.

~*~

When Yixing wakes the next morning, it’s in the most comfortable bed he’s ever had the luxury of being in, with the sun peeking through the grand window close by, and with someone else nuzzling into his neck like a cat.

Yixing feels warm and sated and in a daze. He turns on his side with as little effort as possible, cozying up to the body next to him and finding lips for a kiss, and then another, and another. It’s soft. Warm. Comfortable.

Baekhyun giggles and brushes hair from Yixing’s eyes.

Immediately, the sound brings reality crashing back onto Yixing’s shoulders.

He ignores the crushing weight of reality and this isn’t us this isn’t us this isn’t us chanting quietly in the back of his mind as he blinks his eyes sleepily at the smiling man in front of him. “Feeling better?”

“Much.” Another giggle and Baekhyun is pushing him over and rolling atop him and attaching their mouths in a kiss too deep to be considered anything other than pure affection, romantic. “Good morning,” he murmurs brightly against Yixing’s lips.

Despite himself, Yixing smiles, hands drifting the expanse of Baekhyun’s bare back. “Good morning.”

Because Baekhyun looks good like this. Sleep ruffled and makeup-less and bright like the morning sun.

Yixing gets a good look at Baekhyun’s eyes now, too, brown and sparkling. He’d taken his color contacts out the night before for the first time in Yixing’s presence, but Baekhyun had avoided meeting his curious gaze until they were masked in the darkness of his bedroom. Yixing drinks it in now, how breathtaking Baekhyun really is like this.

But then Yixing lifts his knees to let Baekhyun settle more comfortably between them, and pain shoots up his legs and leaves him groaning, head falling to the side with a grimace. “Fuck,” is all he says. He rolls the wrist he hurt the night before above Baekhyun’s back experimentally. The pain isn't as bad by any means, but he still can't do anything with it for fear of doing real damage.

“You’re still hurting?” Baekhyun asks gently, full of concern, and if his eyes don't resemble a puppy’s, Yixing doesn't know what would.

“Yeah, but I knew I would be. It’s fine.”

Baekhyun doesn't look so sure. “Don't you have work today?”

Yixing groans again. Yep. He has a yoga class, and personal training sessions with Jongdae, Kyungsoo, and Irene.

It’s leg day.

“Fuck, hand me my phone,” Yixing nearly whimpers.

A sympathetic pout graces Baekhyun’s face and he leans over to fetch Yixing’s phone from the nightstand.

Yixing calls Kyungsoo and explains that he injured his knee--he drops the plural lest Kyungsoo get suspicious--and needs to stay off of it for the day. Kyungsoo is understanding, thankfully, wishes him well and promises to properly cancel his yoga class.

Then he has to call Jongdae, who worries and demands Yixing let him come over and help him because Jongdae doesn’t have any meetings today. It’s tempting, but then his eyes land on Baekhyun nestled comfortably against his chest, head resting on his own arm and doodling with a pretty finger on Yixing’s skin and… Yixing turns Jongdae’s offer down.

One more call to Jongin, to ask if he can just check in on the gym for him, and Yixing can finally turn his alarms off and set his phone down.

It’s actually… a bit of a relief to suddenly have a day off. The prospect of spending the day in bed--with Baekhyun preferably--is almost thrilling.

“Sorry you’re hurting,” Baekhyun mumbles, gazing up at him through his eyelashes, pouting a little again.

Yixing shakes his head and pets Baekhyun’s hair. “Don’t be.” He strains his neck to gently kiss his forehead, too.

Baekhyun’s eyes fall closed at the contact. “You could stay, you know.” He sounds hopeful.

Yixing curses himself for the relief that courses through him. “Yeah?”

“Yeah. I’m off today. I’ll take care of you.” Baekhyun wrinkles his nose playfully and scoots up, bringing their faces closer.

Yixing quirks his brow, teasing, “Should I be scared of what taking care of me means?”

Baekhyun wiggles upward some more and kisses his lips. “Definitely not.”

Chapter Text

The sound of Baekhyun’s laughter as he tried to carry Yixing across the penthouse to the living room echoes in his mind, even though it’s been days.

And then, the way they kissed in each other’s arms on the couch for what felt like hours, for no reason at all, leaves goosebumps on his skin, even though it’s been weeks.

All in all, Yixing knows he’s fucked.

And not even in the good way, considering Baekhyun’s been out of town for three weeks. Three weeks. Another business trip. He had to leave the day after their… thing… at the penthouse, and for reasons Yixing doesn’t want to consider, he hasn’t even attempted laying with anyone else to sate his needs.

Not even Oh “I Guess I Can Let You Fuck Me For The Greater Good” Sehun. “I can stall my plan to court Kim Jongin to give my bestie’s dick some relief,” he’d insisted.

But Yixing has lost interest.

In everyone but Baekhyun.

He’s. Fucked.

~*~

It’s when that three weeks is coming to a close that Yixing receives a mysterious package in the mail with no return address.

The large, bulky envelope is light enough for him to pinch a corner between his forefinger and thumb to hold in front of his face and eye warily. As if he’ll magically be able to see through it that way.

He can’t.

Sighing, he carefully tears open the envelope and pulls out what seems to be a box wrapped in tissue paper. But there’s a note attached with a large “READ ME FIRST” on the front so Yixing sighs again and plucks the note from the package.

I’ll be back on the 23rd, hyung.
I thought we could try something new.
I dare you to wear it during work, then
meet me at my place ;)

Yixing stares at the silk tie drawing at the bottom of the paper, then at the wrapped package in his hand.

Oh god.

Even more cautiously than before, Yixing sets the note down and starts tearing the tissue away. He’d be lying if he said excitement wasn’t buzzing anew under his skin, because the mysterious package is from Baekhyun, but.

The mysterious package is from Baekhyun.

And it involves being worn.

“Oh my god,” Yixing groans when the box is revealed to him.

A box right out of the sex shop, with cheesy font and a cheesier model posing awfully.

Spice up your sex life!

Men love this toy!

...It’s a butt plug.

Yixing refuses to wear it.

~*~

On the morning of the 23rd, Yixing wakes up unthinkably horny.

He doesn’t understand how his body could betray him like this (anticipating Baekhyun’s return no doubt) because when he’s maybe halfway through rubbing one out to thoughts of silk ties and cashmere sweaters--albeit a little too close to his late shift at the gym--Yixing fetches the fucking butt plug from deep in his sock drawer.

“Just while I’m jerking off,” he mumbles to himself. “I’ll take it out after.” Because Yixing doesn’t own a dildo and the stupid plug is enough to at least pretend.

~*~

He doesn’t take it out after.

~*~

Work is absolute torture and Yixing hates himself for playing this game, hates himself even more for not giving in to the first sign of weakness.

And the second. And the third. And the fourth. Et cetera.

He hates Baekhyun.

(He doesn’t.)

By some grace from God himself at least, Yixing does only have a less-than-half day at work. He arrives at 1:30 and plans to clock out at 5. But he’s already walking funny by the time Chanyeol is greeting him in the lobby because fuck is it uncomfortable driving with a plug shoved up your ass.

Of course his afternoon opens with a yoga class, and Yixing seriously considers walking out on his job because the second he bends in half to demonstrate basic stretching, the plug rubs against his prostate, which nearly brings him to his knees and drags some sound from deep in his chest that’s somewhere between a grunt and a moan.

He laughs awkwardly and apologizes, crying back ache, and avoids Sehun and Minseok’s suspicious gazes from their positions in the back of the studio.

Stretching continues on like that, only he manages, somehow, to keep his sounds to himself.

And then miraculously, he comes up with the bright idea to have others demonstrate positions for him, and passes it off as a pop quiz.

Sehun volunteers first and murmurs to Yixing, “If you didn’t want me staring at your ass, you could’ve just said something,” and promptly slaps his ass.

It takes everything within Yixing not to whimper aloud.

Instead he rolls his eyes and hides his trembling hands behind his back. “Demonstrate or get out, Sehunnie.”

Sehun smirks and kneels, gracefully sliding into position and Yixing bites the inside of his lip nervously, because he’s sweating and half hard and hasn’t had sex with anyone in three weeks and this position accentuates Sehun’s lean legs and plump ass perfectly. Of course it does.

He casually crosses his legs and observes, intentionally making himself uncomfortable. It hurts a little, but it helps.

When the class disperses around ten minutes later, Minseok corners him. “Are you sick? Or drunk?” he asks with wide eyes. It’s just them in the studio.

“What? No!” It would be so much better if he was either of those things.

Minseok furrows his brow. “Yixing, you openly checked out Sehun in the middle of class. I can’t remember the last time you did that. There’s no way you’re okay right now.”

“Sehun is a very attractive man, Minseok. Nice to look at.” Yixing pulls at the collar of his t-shirt. He’s hot. And itchy.

“Yeah, but I thought you and B--”

“Yixing~!” A loud voice sings from the doorway of the studio. Jongdae.

Yixing doesn’t trust his voice to firmly raise higher than speaking level, so Yixing just smiles shakily and waves.

“Get your ass out here!” Jongdae playfully demands. “I got a hot lunch date with my super hot boyfriend that I don’t wanna be late to!”

A hand rests on Yixing’s arm and he startles and looks back at Minseok. “Yixing, if you’re sick, you should go home.” He says the words slow, like he thinks maybe Yixing is drunk. And five years old.

Yixing musters a better smile and shakes his head. “Thank you for the concern, hyung. I’ll be fine. Just a little feverish, I think.” Not the farthest thing from the truth.

Minseok doesn’t look too sure but nods anyway, then squeezes his arm and walks away.

Jongdae is no longer in the doorway when Yixing walks out, but a hand grabs his arm and yanks him to the side. He yelps and clenches around the plug in his ass, making him shudder.

It’s Sehun holding onto him. “Is it a vibrator?” he whispers conspiratorially.

Yixing’s blood runs cold. “W-What?”

“I knew you looked halfway fucked, Yixing, but I felt something when I slapped your ass. It’s a vibrator right?” Sehun looks way too excited and Yixing feels like he’s going to be sick. “Who has the remote, Yixing?” Sehun glances around. “Is it Jongdae? Not kinky enough… Baekhyun must be around here somewhere…”

“Sehun, I don't know what you’re talking about,” Yixing tries.

He just rolls his eyes. “Hyung, you can't lie to me. I felt it.” Now the boy squints at Yixing, before a light bulb seemingly goes off in his head. “A plug. It’s more subtle.” A curious tilt of his head. “You and Baekhyun are into some kinky shit, aren't you?”

Feeling his face flush deeper, Yixing turns. “I’m going to walk away now.” But Sehun pulls him back and an invasive finger pushes against the plug in his ass. Yixing almost doubles over. “D-Don’t.”

Sehun turns him back around so they’re facing each other, his eyes a little wide. He actually looks concerned, rather than playful. “Do you have to wear it all day?”

Yixing shouldn't answer. It’s none of Oh Sehun’s business. But he nods, then shrugs. It’s not really all day, but it might as well be a lifetime.

“Do you want me to blow you? That would help.”

Yixing’s never had someone ask if he wants them to blow him so sincerely. He almost laughs. Except his dick perks up a little at the thought and he really needs to not. “I can handle myself, Sehun, thanks.”

“But you’re probably not allowed to touch.”

Actually, there aren't any set rules. Other than wearing from the start of his work shift until he gets to Baekhyun’s. But if Yixing lets himself come every time he needs to today, he won't have anything left for Baekhyun. So he answers, “And neither are you,” and successfully walks away this time.

Sehun leaves and Yixing stretches with Jongdae and sweats bullets with every brush of the plug against his prostate, getting him fully hard now, then gets his friend settled for a fifteen minute jog on the treadmill and excuses himself to his office for a moment to adjust his dick in secret.

Touching himself, even so fleetingly, sends jolts of pleasure across his body and he whimpers. How the fuck is he going to make it through the rest of the day?! He’s only been at work for an hour and a half; he doesn't get to Baekhyun’s for another three.

“You going to the party tonight?”Jongdae asks when Yixing rejoins him.

Fuck. It’s a party?

If Baekhyun even considers mingling, Yixing will punch him.

Jongdae doesn't let him respond. He laughs. “Of course you are. You and your Baekhyunnie haven't fucked in so long. I think you’re going through withdrawals.”

Yixing reaches over and turns up the speed of the treadmill and walks away. Jongdae yelps and falls off of it.

~*~

> yixing: What time will you be back today?
> baekhyun: i was just about to text u actually
> baekhyun: not till after the party starts :( my flight got pushed back
> baekhyun: i should be back by 7! can't wait to see you

Seven. That adds another hour to his wait, and suffering.

Yixing nearly cries on the spot.

> baekhyun: think you can last till then? ;)
> yixing: Let’s just say I’ll choke you if I cry and you laugh at me.
> yixing: And not in the sexy way we’ve discussed.
> baekhyun: O_O i will dutifully kiss away your tears bb
> baekhyun: and hide my laughter in your ass
> baekhyun: or something
> baekhyun: that sounded better in my head bye
> yixing: Smh I can’t believe you’re this bad at sexting.
> baekhyun: WE WEREN’T EVEN--!!!!
> baekhyun: shut up :(
> yixing: kekeke

~*~

Yixing cancels his pilates class of the day, but can't bring himself to cancel Kyungsoo’s personal training session for the second time in a month.

Kyungsoo once again shows remarkable concern for Yixing, and if he wasn't so turned on he could cry, he’d be touched that Kyungsoo really does think so highly of him.

“Go home,” Kyungsoo says.

Yixing shakes his head, gulping nervously. “No.”

“Yixing, you’re obviously ill. It’s okay. Go.”

The trainer shakes his head and wipes his brow with the back of his hand. “I can at least make it through your session Kyungsoo-yah. I’ll be fine.”

Kyungsoo looks skeptical but nods and lays down under the barbell.

~*~

Yixing ducks out of work a few minutes early and very nearly gives in and fucks himself in the parking garage, in his car, where security cameras would probably be able to see him.

But he perseveres.

Somehow.

Two hours until seven.

~*~

He does breathing exercises while he whips up a quick dinner for himself and avoids bending over at all costs. Crosses his legs in that uncomfortable way that’s gotten him through the day. Although the butt plug is uncomfortable enough in itself. He can’t even sit down anymore without squirming and the thought of making the trip to Baekhyun’s kind of makes him want to die, but he keeps telling himself it’ll be worth it.

When the clock strikes 7:15PM, he throws on a sweatshirt and some jeans and bolts for the door.

He makes it to Baekhyun’s penthouse ten minutes before seven, and sits in his car for three before he is too uncomfortable and simply can't wait any longer.

He weaves his way through the mingling rich and his curious friends and jolts with every accidental brush against his hand or cheek (thanks Chanyeol’s shoulder), too sensitive to bear.

Jongdae catcalls after him. Amber and Yoona greet him. He doesn't even spare anyone a glance.

He’s nearly gasping for breath by the time he’s shutting himself inside Baekhyun’s bedroom, and almost breaks down into tears over the sight of a familiar head of blonde hair bent over a suitcase.

Baekhyun looks up in surprise, then in no time at all is pressing Yixing into the door and kissing the hell out of him.

They both whimper, he thinks, and doesn't even want to begin dwelling on that, but it doesn't take long for Baekhyun to pull away with a blinding smile.

Then he realizes.

He swipes a thumb across Yixing’s cheek curiously, wiping away sweat, then grabs one of his hands and watches the way it trembles.

Baekhyun’s eyes widen comically as he stares up at him. “You really wore it.”

Yixing whimpers again and nods, pushing his ass back against the door without thinking. He needs fucking relief. “Please, Baekhyun. I-I need--”

Baekhyun still has him by the hand and is walking backwards slowly, way too fucking slowly, marveling over Yixing like he’s some rare species. “All day?”

“S-Since like--12:15.” Yixing steps a little closer pointedly and Baekhyun rests his hands on his hips, still slowly pulling him toward the bed.

“Have you come?”

“No,” Yixing grits out almost angrily. “Probably will as soon as you fucking stop talking and do something.”

Baekhyun purses his lips, obviously amused, excited, but he nods his head, conceding and sliding Yixing’s sweatshirt over his head. The air on his hot skin runs a shiver down his spine, or maybe it’s from Baekhyun grazing his fingers along the tensed muscles of his stomach. Yixing doesn't know anymore. “Will never get over how perfect you are, Yixing,” Baekhyun mumbles before dipping his head to nibble at one of Yixing’s nipples.

Yixing moans way too loudly for the move and shakes his head. “Please hurry.” His dick hurts where it’s straining against his jeans.

“Yeah,” Baekhyun nods and kisses along his chest as his deft fingers work at Yixing’s jeans. “Yeah, I’ve got you, baby.”

Yixing reacts to every graze of Baekhyun’s fingers, to every murmur of encouragement and praise.

“How have you gotten even better, Xing?”

“Can’t believe how good you are for me.”

“I’ve missed this. I’ve missed you.”

They’re only in their boxer briefs now and Yixing finds himself nodding along with the last one against his will, nudging his nose into the crook of Baekhyun’s neck, his heavy breaths fanning across the skin it meets, hot, shaky. He gently grinds his hips against Baekhyun and whimpers for what feels like the hundredth time in a span of a few minutes. His skin is burning up and he’s never needed to come so badly.

But Baekhyun still isn’t hurrying. He gingerly palms the front of Yixing’s utterly soaked boxers, snakes an arm around and fingers the plug.

Yixing shudders and nearly collapses and decides he has to take matters into his own hands. He shakes his head and crawls onto the bed, on his hands and knees, facing the headboard. The second his arms start to quake--AKA almost immediately--he lets himself down until his cheek is resting against the sheets and his ass is shamelessly in the air, on display, waiting.

Baekhyun’s lips part, face flushed, as he skims his eyes along Yixing’s body ready for him this way.

“B-Baekhyun,” Yixing pants, slowly working his arms backward until he’s holding them pointedly behind his back, hands clasped. “Please.”

“Ffffuck.” Baekhyun jumps into action then, pulling open his nightstand drawer and fetching lube and a silk tie. “You’re unbelievable,” he almost groans as he rests one knee on the bed and so fucking gently slips the tie around Yixing’s wrists. Yixing jolts at the touch, regardless, and Baekhyun pauses to pet his hair. “Is skin on skin too much right now? I can put on one of those sweaters you love so much.”

“Nngh. Hurry.”

Baekhyun bites his lip in Yixing’s peripheral and ties the silk around Yixing’s wrists. It’s looser than usual, but Yixing can’t find the care within himself to comment on it. He watches Baekhyun literally run to his closet, takes deep breaths and admires the way his plump little ass looks in his boxers.

This Baekhyun does make quick work of, thankfully. He yanks a sweater from his closet and pulls it over his head. It’s too big for him. Has thumb-holes.

He looks... like the coziest boyfriend in the world.

Ignoring his own, terrifying thoughts, Yixing now watches Baekhyun’s dick bounce as it’s freed from the confines of underwear; he’s hard and Yixing fleetingly wonders if he already was before he burst into the room. He was too desperate to notice.

Yixing squirms and the plug rubs his prostate. “Fuck,” he cries. “I-I’m so tired of this. I n-need to come, Baek. Please.”

“I’ve got you, I’ve got you,” Baekhyun purrs and clambers onto the bed behind him. “Gonna take your boxers off, ‘kay?” Yixing just nods and tries to focus on anything but his dick being fucking freed. Baekhyun’s breath hitches behind him, probably at the sight of the plug, and the process of getting Yixing’s underwear off is excruciatingly long in this position. Yixing only has himself to blame for that; he didn’t think about it in his haze.

But Baekhyun softly apologizes and does his best, and before complaints can really rumble from Yixing’s chest, kisses are being trailed along one of his ass cheeks and he trembles in anticipation, feeling Baekhyun’s long, delicate fingers gripping the edge of the plug and gently tugging it backward.

Yixing groans and whimpers, and something soft pets his waist; he vaguely realizes it feels like Baekhyun’s arm or wrist, and figures it must look silly from an outside perspective, but Yixing is unreasonably touched by the gesture, by Baekhyun trying his best not to overwhelm him.

His asshole clenches around air when there’s nothing inside him anymore and he doesn’t know whether to feel relieved or frustrated at the loss.

A moment of nothing passes--he’s too far gone to realize Baekhyun is just lubing himself up--and Yixing starts squirming almost worse than he was before. He. Needs. Relief.

But then Baekhyun has him by the hips (Yixing can picture the sweater paws his hands are in, fabric separating their skin) and is sliding his length into Yixing with so little effort, Yixing could cry.

Yixing almost does cry, at having this, Baekhyun, again, at being filled so perfectly, at the sweet arousal that blooms within him because his body knows that relief is on the way.

Baekhyun’s low moan is like music to his ears. “Feel so good, Yixing,” he says. “Are you okay? Can I--”

“Yes.”

Baekhyun laughs and carefully begins to move his hips, their simultaneous moans filling the room as if there isn’t a party with a multitude of people happening downstairs. Not that they ever care about that anyway.

They’re loud and careless. Baekhyun slips one of his hands between Yixing’s, their fingers tangling as he thrusts deeper.

Yixing can feel the pressure mounting almost immediately and begs for Baekhyun’s touch.

Baekhyun strokes his cock maybe three times before he comes all over the bedsheets.

The orgasm that washes over Yixing is nothing like he’s ever felt before, which is saying something after experiencing the cock ring for the first time. It’s long and powerful, pushes tears from his eyes and a seemingly neverending stream of come from his dick as his body shudders and convulses beneath Baekhyun’s, who coos praise that Yixing’s brain can’t process.

“Don’t stop,” Yixing finds himself crying out after a moment. He squeezes Baekhyun’s fingers and weakly rocks backward against him, aftershocks still rolling throughout him but he wants Baekhyun to keep going. He needs more of him.

“Fuck, h-how are you real?” Baekhyun asks breathlessly, but he doesn't start thrusting again and removes his hand from Yixing’s grip, making Yixing whine, petulant. “One sec, babe. Just gonna…”

The tie falls limp against Yixing’s wrists, and then it’s gone completely and Baekhyun is helping him right his arms. Yixing props himself up on them and rolls a kink from his neck. “Thanks,” he mumbles. He feels, decidedly, better, now that he’s taking a moment to settle down. His body is still loose from his release but it doesn't feel like his skin is crawling anymore. He hums and rolls his hips a little--Baekhyun moans under his breath--and murmurs, “You can touch me now. Please touch me now.” He doesn’t mention how much he’s missed it, Baekhyun’s touch. He can’t.

The response is immediate, Baekhyun’s fingers trailing up the length of his back, pressing into his skin. He supports himself with one hand against the bed and presses himself to Yixing, kissing along his back and wrapping his free hand around to graze it along Yixing’s chest.

He thrusts slow then, rocks into Yixing rhythmically, and digs his nails into his skin as he eventually starts to fuck him harder.

His moans reverberate against Yixing’s back, sending shivers trailing down his spine. “Think I actually f-forgot how good you feel, Xing.”

Teeth nip at the back of Yixing’s neck and he keens. Baekhyun does it again and his hips jerk.

“How much you love biting,” he mumbles, latching his teeth onto a piece of skin and tugging a little. “Wanna leave marks all over you, hyung.”

Yixing squeaks over a particularly hard bite, shuddering. “‘s only been three weeks,” he tries weakly, even though he knows that’s way too long. Way too long to not be doing this.

“Longest three weeks of my life,” Baekhyun murmurs in response, dragging his tongue in a circle, tracing the bite mark that stings the most.

Yixing’s not going to linger on that comment. Even though he’s sure Baekhyun just missed him. He didn't go without sex for three weeks just because he wasn't with Yixing. There’s no way.

Silence falls for a moment, aside from the slapping of their skin and wanton noises, sweat dripping from both of their bodies because of the fucking cashmere sweater.

And then, as tears are welling up in Yixing’s eyes from how good he feels, the bedroom door opens.

Oh.

Yixing… didn’t lock it behind himself.

“Fucking--” Baekhyun curses and stills, fully sheathed in Yixing’s ass. “Are you kidding me?! Get out!”

“Agh! My eyes!” It’s Sehun. Yixing groans, exasperated. “I can’t believe Baekhyun tops! Ahhhh--ow! Did you just throw lube at me?! I’m not cleaning that up.” Yixing turns his head and sees that lube did, in fact, spill on the floor. “Oh hey, Yixing. Needed to be fucked so bad you couldn’t even wait for him to get undressed, huh?” Sehun wiggles his eyebrows and Yixing questions his life choices and the people he associates with.

It feels like Baekhyun is trying his hardest not to move, but also to shield Yixing’s body from the door. “Sehun. Out,” he grits out through his teeth. Yixing would be remiss to pretend it’s not a little hot.

“But--”

“Sehun,” Yixing says as firmly as he can. “If you’re not gone within five seconds, he’s going to throw the plug at you next.”

“Yep okay bye. Happy fucking!”

And just like that, Oh Sehun is gone.

He even locks the door for them.

Baekhyun and Yixing sit there for a moment, processing what just happened, and then they both burst out laughing. “I can’t believe we didn’t lock the door!” Baekhyun chokes out, pressing his laughter into Yixing’s skin as if it belongs there.

And then he pulls out of Yixing, drawing a verbal protest from him. “Baekhyun!” he whines.

Baekhyun just giggles. “Turn over, Xing. Wanna see you.”

Yixing can’t totally argue with that.

He does and Baekhyun sinks back inside him so easily, presses so much closer, kisses the life out of him while they squirm to readjust.

“He knew about the toy,” Baekhyun mumbles against his cheek.

Yixing slides his hands down his sides, petting the sweater and nods. “He slapped my ass at yoga and felt it.” He grips the ends of the clothing and starts lifting until Baekhyun sits up enough to remove it completely, looking some mix of annoyed and amused.

“Does he always slap your ass?”

Yixing slides his hands onto Baekhyun’s ass as he settles back against him and smirks. “Jealous?”

“No.” Baekhyun huffs and leans into Yixing’s neck to nibble and kiss.

Yixing’s smirk just widens and his hands squeeze the younger’s rump. “He hits on me every day, still.” He presses his lips to Baekhyun’s ear. “But I’ve been ignoring it for a while now.”

Yixing can feel the satisfied smile against his neck and bites his lip before Baekhyun lifts his head back up and nuzzles their noses together. “No more talk of Oh Sehun while we’re fucking, yeah?”

“Yeah.” Yixing kisses him happily, kisses him until Baekhyun picks back up with thrusting and they’re moaning again, this angle so much better, being able to see and properly touch each other so much better, Baekhyun’s cock constantly brushing against Yixing’s prostate. So much better.

“Nnngh, Baekhyun.”

“Y-Yeah?”

“Missed you.”

Baekhyun’s smile meets his in what should be a kiss but isn’t, because neither one of them can stop grinning.

One orgasm each, one long, lazy, afterglow-y makeout session, and lots of food, water, and rest later finds Yixing and Baekhyun in the shower.

Yixing’s head rests against his arms on the shower wall, and Baekhyun rests on his knees behind him, with his tongue up Yixing’s ass.

The spray of water is warm on Yixing’s skin, but Baekhyun’s hands gripping his hips, mouth against his ass, is scalding, and so, so amazing. He can feel Baekhyun lapping up his own come. Yixing whimpers. “Y-You never get tired, do you?”

Baekhyun’s chuckle vibrates deliciously and Yixing shudders and takes his length in hand just as Baekhyun reaches between his legs and strokes his balls delicately.

Yixing moans, and the sound echoes around them, amplifies in the bathroom. “You’re insatiable,” he mumbles.

“I think you like it.” Baekhyun nips playfully at one of Yixing’s buttcheeks, then dives back in.

Eventually, Yixing manages to come again. It’s a little weak, a little wilt-y, but still, he and Baekhyun are a little shocked, maybe impressed.

Yixing leans back against the wall, pulls until Baekhyun’s back is flush with his chest, holding him tight and jerking him off until he comes a second time.

And then a little later, Baekhyun rips his soiled sheets from the bed before they fall into it, boneless and spent. He pulls what he claims is his favorite blanket from the top of the trunk at the end of the bed and cuddles close to Yixing so they can share it.

Baekhyun doesn't say anything for a moment, his eyes calculating, searching. But finally, he grins brilliantly and opens his mouth. This time, it’s not a desperate plea or a hopeful offer. It’s simple, certain.

“Stay,” Baekhyun says.

Yixing rolls on top of him with a soft smile. “Okay.”

They fall asleep to the sounds of the party dying out downstairs, draped comfortably in each other’s warmth.

~*~

The following Monday is exactly the same as every other Monday, really, except for the tiny, miniscule really, detail in which Yixing leaves for work from Baekhyun’s penthouse...

Where he stayed the entire weekend.

They hardly left the confines of Baekhyun’s luxurious home. They ordered takeout, watched movies, had inconceivable amounts of sex.

Lots of terribly relationship-y behavior that Yixing refuses to chalk up to anything other than cramming three weeks of missed time into two days. Everything in between was just the much needed breaks to recharge.

That’s all.

He doesn’t dwell on the hysterical laughter they share over genuinely awful American horror films, tangled up with tears in their eyes on a comfy palette of blankets on the living room floor, even though there are three perfectly good couches to choose from right there. Or the way Baekhyun shows random bursts of affection and likes to gently kiss the skin behind Yixing’s ear or play with his hands. The way Baekhyun’s spare toothbrush suddenly has a place next to his actual one, even though he’s always kept it in a drawer before.

Or the way Yixing continuously catches himself staring at Baekhyun, too fond.

It’s different, a little bit, from the time they spent like this before Baekhyun went on his trip. Yixing was injured and Baekhyun was still a little closed off after his episode that night before. He didn’t show affection this way, didn’t twist Yixing’s insides with one little touch or brush of lips.

God, Yixing is so fucked.

Monday morning itself comes groggily. Sleepy men rolling out of bed, Yixing with his hands on Baekhyun’s hips as he guides him to the bathroom because Baekhyun can barely walk, still mostly asleep.

They brush their teeth side by side, Baekhyun leaning lazily against Yixing, bleary eyes blinking.

Yixing attempts to do something with his hair while Baekhyun pees, then wraps himself around him from behind after that to sleepily watch him tap concealer under his eyes, brush on a little powder.

Yixing gazes into the mirror as he presses a line of kisses from Baekhyun’s neck down to his shoulder, and likes the way Baekhyun gets so easily lost in it, head tilting and eyes falling shut. “Mm… don’t wanna go to work, Xing,” he mumbles. “Wanna go back to bed. With you.”

“Me too.”

~*~

Jongdae scrunches his nose in distaste when Yixing walks into the gym. “Those are your gym clothes from Friday.”

Yixing never went home and only had his gym bag in his car.

“Not the shirt.” It’s Baekhyun’s t-shirt. “Why do you even remember that?” Yixing chuckles and hurries over to his office to unlock it and toss his bag inside.

He’ll add five pounds to Jongdae’s barbell as secret revenge for outing him so damn quickly.

Jongdae shrugs when Yixing turns back around. “Dunno. You were being weird on Friday. It was memorable.”

Yixing rolls his eyes.

Jongdae squints his. “Were you actually having sex withdrawals? Is that a thing?”

Snorting, Yixing shoves Jongdae toward the mirrors to make him stretch. “Shut up.”

~*~

No matter how hard Yixing may want to try, there’s no avoiding Oh Sehun.

“He seriously tops?!”

That’s the first thing out of Sehun’s mouth when they see each other. He showed up early to his once a week (with Yixing) training session just to catch Yixing’s lunch break and say it.

Yixing sighs long-sufferingly and doesn’t treat him to an answer.

Which could never stop him anyway. “I admit, I’m a little disappointed. I mean, with the plug and everything, I thought you’d be doing something much kinkier but that was like--vanilla as fuck.”

Yixing blinks at him, expressionless. He will not respond, he will not respond, he will not respond.

“But really. Baekhyun? Topping? Tiny little kinda-twink Baekhyun???”

The comment doesn’t sit completely well and Yixing presses his mouth into a hard line. “Since when does size or appearance determine who tops and bottoms? Let me finish my lunch in peace, Sehun.”

“You don’t even have any food left.” Sehun waves a dismissive hand. “Anyway, is he really that good? Because trust me, I know how much you prefer to top--”

“Sehun. Out.”

The other man squints his eyes challengingly, but Yixing doesn’t falter.

Sehun sighs and rolls his eyes. “So boring, hyung.” And then he’s gone.

~*~

Yixing spends Monday night in his own apartment and doesn’t sleep well. He tosses and turns and stares at the tiny window and wishes he could see the stars like he can through Baekhyun’s.

He just got too used to Baekhyun’s California King bed, is all.

~*~

Tuesday evening, Yixing has just finished cooking himself dinner when his phone buzzes on the counter.

> baekhyun: come over, hyung. wanna shower you in affection
> baekhyun: and come ;)

Yixing actually chokes on his food, laughing.

> yixing: You’re insufferable.

Yixing pretends he’s not eating a little quicker.

> baekhyun: you like it ;(((
> baekhyun: anyway little do you know i’m just using you for your warmth
> baekhyun: bed was too cold last night
> baekhyun: wanna snugggglllllle
> baekhyun: come snuggle meeeee
> yixing: This doesn't make you any less insufferable, you know.
> baekhyun: no? i’m cute though, right? that’s what matters here ;)

Yixing snorts, but doesn't disagree. Not that he’ll tell Baekhyun that. He leaves the text thread open but doesn't respond, choosing to focus on his meal for the time being. Make Baekhyun squirm a little.

It takes one entire minute.

> baekhyun: yixing? :(((
> baekhyun: come on, tell me i’m cute
> baekhyun: i’m needy, xingxing:(((
> yixing: Lol don't call me that
> baekhyun: xingxing-ge?
> yixing: No lol
> baekhyun: honey?
> baekhyun: darling?
> baekhyun: sweetcheeks?
> baekhyun: you DO have some sweet cheeks ;)))
> yixing: Not as sweet as yours ;)))))))))))))
> baekhyun: are you making fun of my emoticon usage :((
> baekhyun: also thanks HONEY my cheeks ARE pretty sweet, huh? ;)
> baekhyun: my ass is nice too
> yixing: Oh no. Why would I ever.
> yixing: Your modesty is astounding.
> baekhyun: says the guy who likes jerking off in the mirror :(((
> yixing: That has nothing to do with modesty, Baek lol
> baekhyun: you’re right. you’re just conceited :((((
> yixing: Do you want me to come over or not?
> baekhyun: i fully support loving yourself!!!!!

Yixing wonders if Baekhyun wants him to stay the night.

He quickly packs a bag just in case.

~*~

The chill of February practically melts right off of Yixing the moment Baekhyun wraps his arms around his neck and kisses him silly. Yixing ponders the occasion, a fleeting thought, because all he’s done is walk through the door. But they fall into each other so easily as Baekhyun takes Yixing’s overnight bag without breaking away and sets it aside, as Yixing slips his shoes off. Their kisses are always the same; push and pull, breathy sighs, Baekhyun submitting because Yixing likes to run his tongue along his perfect teeth. The process never changes but it somehow never grows old, either.

Baekhyun slips Yixing’s jacket off him and parts long enough to hang it up. He’s cutest like this, Yixing thinks. In a Nike t-shirt and plaid pajama pants. Even while the cashmere sweaters and illegally tight jeans remain Yixing’s weakness, this is real. Baekhyun looks lightyears younger and lighter on his feet when he’s not trying to impress anyone.

Yixing just doesn't know when Baekhyun stopped trying to impress him.

And then, in a flash, they’re undressing, leaving a trail of clothes from the foyer to the couch like an unnecessary scene right out of the cheesy action film playing on the TV as Baekhyun sucks Yixing’s cock down and works a lubed finger through his rim.

Baekhyun fucks him slow and hard; slow enough for the tension to drip sweat down their backs and collarbones, hard enough for the snaps of their hips to be heard across the penthouse, for the couch springs to squeak ominously.

They had a lot of sex like this over the weekend, without ties, that is, and Yixing is surprised he prefers it this way, surprised Baekhyun seems to prefer it this way. Perhaps it’s a warning sign, the warning sign, like the endless other ones offered to them each, but Yixing likes the way Baekhyun’s sweaty hair feels between his fingertips when he mercilessly tugs on it too much to care.

Breathless and spent from release, Baekhyun falls into the small space between the couch and Yixing and immediately nestles into the crook of his neck, cuddles close despite them being sticky and sweaty and overheated. They watch the cheesy action film.

It’s Tuesday. They fuck every Tuesday, so this is completely normal.

Only then it’s Wednesday, and Thursday, and Friday and Yixing hasn’t so much as seen his apartment all week and doesn’t even realize it until he’s already at Baekhyun’s house, right after work, with nothing to wear to the party that night.

“Just wash your jeans and wear one of my shirts,” Baekhyun murmurs between kisses, obviously distracted from party preparation by Yixing seating himself on the kitchen counter.

Yixing teases, “Will you be able to handle it?” before gently nipping at his lips. Baekhyun’s possessiveness has only increased as time has passed; the first time Yixing wore the tie given to him for Christmas, Baekhyun had pulled him by it into the downstairs bathroom and fucked him there, gagging him with the tie and holding his hands behind his back.

Baekhyun smirks against his lips. “I might be able to control myself if I can blow you on the washing machine.”

“Mmm, I thought you’d never ask.”

But Baekhyun never shows in the washroom, but neither really does Yixing. It becomes clear pretty quickly that Baekhyun is overwhelmed with party preparation. With cleaning and ordering alcohol and food. Yixing returns from picking those things up for him to find Baekhyun slumped on the couch, pinching the bridge of his nose.

Yixing sits and pulls Baekhyun’s head down on his lap, brushing his fingers through his hair and watching his eyelashes flutter against his cheeks. “I guess I always assumed you had a maid or something,” Yixing murmurs, thinking how he hasn’t seen anyone else in the penthouse all week.

“I don’t need one.”

“Maybe you do, Baek. You’re exhausted already and no one’s even here yet.”

“Junmyeonnie helps sometimes.”

“He wasn’t here today.”

“But you were.”

Yixing hums.

“Thanks, hyung.”

Baekhyun falls asleep shortly after, and Yixing doesn’t wake him until half an hour before their friends are scheduled to arrive.

~*~

“Why do you have the parties every week, Baekhyun?”

The question is whispered like a secret late that night, after the penthouse has gone silent. It’s something Yixing has asked before, but somehow it holds more meaning than it sounds. Like the day Baekhyun changes his answer is the day everything will change.

He didn’t expect it to be today.

“So that I don’t feel so lonely,” is whispered back, into his neck, and Yixing holds his breath, waits for Baekhyun to laugh, or shout just kidding! in his face before pouncing as usual, but it never comes.

Yixing blinks, pulls their bodies apart. Baekhyun’s never looked so scared, he thinks. Of what he said, of what it might mean, of how Yixing might react. Yixing doesn’t know how to react, truthfully.

“You don't have to be alone,” he whispers against Baekhyun’s lips as he takes his head in his hands.

“I do,” Baekhyun breathes, but he kisses Yixing all the same.

Yixing swallows his pride and Baekhyun’s quiet whimper. “You’re not alone.”

~*~

Yixing yawns as he waits for Baekhyun to answer his door, almost irritated with himself.

He’s starting to really hate Baekhyun’s bed, because lately when Baekhyun is working late and Yixing sleeps in his own apartment, he doesn't get much sleep at all, tossing and turning on his own cheap mattress, cold and annoyed.

Last night was one of those nights.

He’s just considering breaking in with the spare key when the door finally opens.

"Hey, Xing," Baekhyun greets with a small smile.

Yixing hums as if that's all he can manage and steps into the other man's space to press their lips together, something short, chaste, before he steps around Baekhyun so the latter can close the door. Yixing removes his shoes and starts to step further into the penthouse when a hand wraps around his wrist and tugs him back.

"Hey," Baekhyun says again once they're facing each other, and then his free hand is in Yixing's hair and Yixing is being kissed once more.

He breathes Baekhyun in slowly, his inhale the loudest noise between them as Baekhyun gently nibbles on Yixing's lips and entwines their fingers. "You okay?" Baekhyun asks, eyes searching.

Yixing nods. "Just tired."

Baekhyun nudges his mouth with another soft kiss. "Okay. Come on. I just need to finish writing out an email on my phone, then I'm all yours."

"Mm, all mine."

Baekhyun giggles and steps ahead, pulling Yixing by the hand toward the staircase. Yixing sees the blush on his cheeks, though. He bites his lip.

All mine.

Maybe… Maybe one day.

Yixing hardly remembers the ascent up the stairs, and isn't even sure he would've made it had it not been for Baekhyun's fingers between his.

Once they're in the bedroom, Baekhyun sits down where he, presumably, was before, his back against the headboard, one leg crossed over the other. He picks his phone up from the nightstand and eyes it warily as he unlocks it, face growing considerably more serious as he begins typing.

Yixing watches him for a moment, admires him, before deeming himself too drained to stand up on his own anymore. He crawls onto the bed and nestles his head on Baekhyun's lap, curling up comfortably, and Baekhyun freezes under him, but only for a second. His hand finds Yixing's hair again and starts stroking it, brushing through it, and Yixing is asleep within minutes.

Chapter Text

The chill of Winter is slight, fading into the Spring of March when Yixing’s phone rings with a call from someone he’d nearly forgotten about. His family’s--his--lawyer.

He blinks at the phone even after he’s clicked accept, feeling as if reality has been shattered in some way. “Hello?” he finally says.

“Yixing,” the familiar, gravelly voice greets. “How are you?”

“Mr. Zi. Uh, fine, and you?”

“Good, good. Listen, I’m sorry I haven't kept in touch, but I found the missing paperwork.”

Yixing’s grip tightens around his phone.

“What do you mean I don’t have rights to the house?! Who else would she have left it to!”

“Yixing, I’m so sorry, but legally my hands are tied. But I promise I won't stop looking!”

The memory is just a ripple in the sea of his past. He grits out, “It took you over a year.”

“I’m sorry, I--found it as quickly as I could.”

Yixing sighs and does his best to allow the bed to swallow him whole.

“When we transferred to a smaller office--”

“A lot of shit got put in storage, I know.”

“It shouldn't have been put in there but it somehow was--”

“It’s fine. What news do you have for me?”

The news is that Yixing’s mother’s house, his childhood home, is officially his the moment he signs off on the deed, that she didn't have much money saved for him, but it’s enough to pay the loan Yixing had to take out to pay for her burial expenses. He’d wanted her to rest somewhere nice.

Yixing listens to all of it, feeling as small as he did when she died, as small as he actually was when his father passed twelve years ago.

He holds his phone against his chest when he hangs up, stares blankly at the white ceiling until lithe fingers pluck his phone from his hand and set it aside, as lush thighs straddle his hips.

Baekhyun holds Yixing’s head in his hands and kisses him softly. “Hey.”

Then Yixing’s vision is flooded with increasingly familiar brown eyes that stare carefully into his own, noses brushing, foreheads resting together. “Hey,” Yixing whispers. “Did you--”

“Yeah. You don't have to repeat it all.” Brown eyes disappear behind heavy lids as Yixing’s thumbs rub circles into Baekhyun’s thighs. He just woke up, right before the call; Yixing had been watching him sleep before that. They kiss again. “You okay?”

“Define okay,” Yixing sighs.

“Hm, okay, how about you just tell me how to help you feel better?”

Parted lips press to Yixing’s jaw, his ear. “Just this,” he murmurs. “Just this.”

“I can do this,” whispers Baekhyun, easing forward to cage Yixing’s head with his arms and drinking from his lips, lethargic, reverent. Yixing’s hands delicately rove the soft skin of Baekhyun’s back beneath his oversized t-shirt.

It looks to be another lazy Sunday, and Yixing is starting to forget what his own apartment looks like.

~*~

Baekhyun waits until they're pointlessly giggling over their omurice and juice on the floor of the living room to make Yixing talk. They didn’t have sex. Not even a handjob. Yet Yixing feels a hundred times lighter than he had when that phone call ended.

“So…” Baekhyun pushes egg around his plate, uncertain. “What are you going to do about your mom’s house?”

Yixing swallows the bite in his mouth slowly, watches Baekhyun turn his demolished omurice into a smiley face before answering. “I… don't know. It feels wrong to just put it on the market and sell it.”

Baekhyun’s fingers tighten around his fork. “Would you move back?”

Flashes of blonde bedhead and boxy smiles and lazy Sunday morning kisses roll through Yixing’s mind’s eye. Things he’d be leaving behind. The not-yet-dance-studio in the heart of Seoul.

He’s created a life here, even moreso than he had in university. A life with Seoul, a life with SM, with Jongdae, Sehun, Kyungsoo.

Baekhyun.

“No. Maybe one day,” he murmurs, and the color slowly returns to Baekhyun’s tensed fingers. “I like it here. I have a couple of friends back home but… I think I belong here.”

Baekhyun gently plucks a grain of rice from the corner of Yixing’s mouth. “I think so, too.”

“Yeah?” One of the eyes of Baekhyun’s omurice smiley hovers in front of his mouth where Baekhyun holds his fork, and Yixing wraps his lips around it.

Baekhyun beams. “Yeah.” A beat. “What changed your mind?”

“Hm?”

“That time you drunk dialed me and we had phone sex…” The corners of Baekhyun’s mouth quirk up when Yixing grimaces; he still doesn't really remember what happened. “You said something about how you don't feel like you fit in at our parties.”

You fit in with me.

The memory slams Yixing so hard he barely stops himself from blanching. It feels so long ago; it was pretty long ago. But Baekhyun… Had Baekhyun…?

“Oh,” is Yixing’s eloquent response. “I--well I still don't really feel like I fit in, honestly. Despite how well I get along with everyone. But there’s a difference between that and my sense of belonging, I think.”

“How so…?”

Yixing laughs, reaching to tug on Baekhyun’s ear. The other man leans into the touch like he always does. “Don't look so offended, Baekhyunnie. It’s not a slight against you. I’ve never been rich, or part of a rich family, and somehow I surrounded myself with all you wealthy folk--” Baekhyun playfully scoffs. “And I’m still not rich. I don't own any of the designer brands you all love. I don't know what you guys are talking about half the time.”

Baekhyun’s pout is too cute for Yixing not to kiss it. “Yah,” Baekhyun mumbles. “Now I feel bad.” His hands slip around Yixing's waist as he falls against him, pout even more pronounced than before. Yixing just kisses it again. And again.

“It’s not your fault, you know.” He pretends to ponder as Baekhyun’s lips press against his chin. “Or maybe it is.” A cry of protest erupts against Yixing’s skin before Baekhyun pulls away enough to pout at him again. Yixing smirks. “You’re the only reason I kept coming back.” He bumps their noses. “So fucking irresistible.”

Yixing kisses the blush on Baekhyun’s cheeks before he molds their mouths together and silences the soft whimper in Baekhyun’s throat. He feels so small in Yixing’s arms like this, slumped into him as if he planned to fall asleep there, but couldn't resist tilting his head up for one or two (five, six) last kisses. Yixing slides his fingers into the other man’s hair and gently tugs it to change their angle, and Baekhyun inhales sharply before Yixing even grips his ass, murmuring, “God, you’re so…” But he licks behind Yixing’s teeth instead of finishing his sentence, pressing into Yixing’s hands, tangling their legs, gently grinding into Yixing’s thigh. Baekhyun’s fingernails dig into Yixing’s shirtless back when the hand on his ass slips inside his boxer briefs instead, groping the bare flesh of his ass.

“I want your mouth,” Baekhyun moans, and Yixing ducks down to suck at his neck. He doesn’t know how they got here so quickly, but he can feel the desperation pouring between them. “E-Everything. I want you everywhere--fuck--”

Removing his teeth from the junction of Baekhyun’s neck, Yixing pants, his heartbeat skyrocketing at the sight of Baekhyun already so fucking debauched, as if they haven't had sex a thousand times before, face flushed, eyes glazed over, mouth parted and swollen, practically begging Yixing for his touch. Yixing doesn’t dare hope…

He maneuvers Baekhyun onto his back and their fingers automatically lace as Yixing pins his arms above his head. “Should I have you right here?” Yixing mutters, voice as low as he can make it. The firm grind of their clothed crotches is grueling, but so, ridiculously good Yixing immediately does it again, relishing in the synchronicity of their moans. “Between the couch and the coffee table?” He’s out of breath and suddenly desperate to fuck the delectable man before him, just like when they met. He can't believe he hasn't attained it yet; in fact, he’d forgotten all about his original conquest until now.

Another head-spinning grind of their hips and Baekhyun whispers, “Make me come like this.”

“You--ah--you w-want to come in your boxers, Baek?”

Fingers squeeze his, and Yixing ducks to retrace the last bite mark he left in favor of thinking that despite the infinite amount of positions they've been in, this is possibly the most intimate. Baekhyun meets his next hump with vigor. “Do y-you want me this way or not?”

Yixing gets it, he thinks. A compromise. The moment he realizes this could be the first step to taking Baekhyun the way Yixing has wanted from the moment they laid eyes on each other, there’s no decision to be made. Let them dry hump like a couple of teenagers. Yixing would probably do anything to get his dick inside Baekhyun. “I want you every way,” is all he says before their teeth clack together in a terribly sloppy kiss and they’re moaning through the friction, through the heat they're creating in their little bubble on the floor.

Somewhere between Yixing’s sweat dripping onto Baekhyun’s neck and Baekhyun curling his legs around Yixing’s torso, Baekhyun whimpers, “Y-You want me every way?”

The tell-tale burn of pleasure builds, slowly spreads from Yixing’s groin, and he watches Baekhyun’s lips part and eyes dilate as soon as Yixing picks his head up from where it had been resting against Baekhyun’s neck. Yixing knows he looks good like this, fucked out and flushed down to his chest. He just doesn't know when Baekhyun started looking at him that way. Less animalistic and more like he’s in awe. Like maybe he wants Yixing in every way, too.

Yixing nods and Baekhyun bites his lip, muffling his own moan until it stops short altogether, his head falling to the side. He pants, “S-Someone’s coming.”

“What?” But Yixing doesn't stop undulating his hips, even when he hears someone knocking.

“It-It’s Jongdae and J-Junmyeonnie. They’ll walk straight to the kitchen. Won’t see us here.” Baekhyun untangles one of their hands and reaches blindly for the TV remote on the coffee table, chest heaving, skin gleaming. “Can you stay quiet?” He turns the volume of whatever movie they had turned on earlier up.

“Quieter than you.”

“Then don't stop.”

“Are you--”

“I kn-know it turns you on, you fucking exhibitionist, s-so fuck--make me come before they find us.” Baekhyun hooks his newly free arm around Yixing’s neck and drags him down into a kiss. Yixing has no trouble melting into it, the pleasure in his groin growing already. Baekhyun really is perfect. And then he whispers, “Maybe they’ll watch,” just as the front door opens and Junmyeon calls Baekhyun’s name, and Yixing very nearly loses the challenge of staying quiet right then, distracting himself by kissing away the smug smirk on Baekhyun’s pretty face.

Jongdae and Junmyeon don't see them, just as Baekhyun had guessed, walking right to the kitchen, conversing amongst themselves about Baekhyunnie’s whereabouts while Baekhyunnie cups Yixing’s neck and strokes it with his thumb, not quite a caress but not quite a threat either, their hips working in tandem now, desperate, greedy.

“Maybe Baekhyunnie’s asleep, still.”

Baekhyun chokes on a silent groan.

“Was that an extra pair of shoes by the door?”

Yixing reaches back to grope Baekhyun’s thigh and thrusts against him with newfound vigor. They’re almost there. Almost…

“I’ll go upstairs and wake him up,” Jongdae says.

“Mm. Alright. I’ll start preparing lunch.”

The smack of a kiss in the kitchen. Baekhyun comes with his eyes squeezed shut and a strained squeak that Yixing rushes to muffle with his hand, his other curling in the carpet as Baekhyun smiles through his bliss, nudges against Yixing’s hand until it’s cupping his face instead, nuzzles into it.

The extra warmth of Baekhyun’s release between their crotches spurs Yixing on; he presses down and takes Baekhyun’s bottom lip between his teeth, met by a flick of Baekhyun’s tongue as he blinks his bleary eyes open and stares at Yixing.

Yixing pants against Baekhyun’s cheek, so close he can almost taste it. And then Baekhyun rakes his nails along Yixing’s scalp and whispers, “What would you do if I told you to fuck me right here and now, gege?” and Yixing doesn't stand a chance. He can’t stop the surge of heat that flows through him, the extra push that topples him over the edge.

He can’t be put off by the long-forgotten feeling of come spreading in his boxers either, not when Baekhyun’s hands are on him, petting his hot skin and maneuvering them onto their sides before he starts kissing Yixing, slow and thorough, head on Yixing’s arm and fingers entwining in the air next to them.

“Myeonnie, he’s not in his room.”

“Would you really let me fuck you?”

“Really? He’s here somewhere. His car was in the garage.”

“Maybe. Yeah. Maybe.”

“Baekhyunnie~ hyung!”

Yixing turns his head, ready to call out to their friends, needing a distraction from the way his heart won't stop pounding over Baekhyun’s admission, but Baekhyun whispers his name, so he looks at him again, who shakes his head and continues their kissing. “Let them find us,” Baekhyun murmurs, tangling their legs and pressing closer, squeezing their hands.

“Do you think he has a guest over, hyung? Maybe they're showering or something.”

“He never has overnight guests, so I doubt it.”

Yixing’s been staying overnight for weeks now. Months.

Footsteps approach the living room again and Baekhyun smirks against Yixing’s lips.

“I see food on the coffee table! At least he ate breakfast.”

“That’s good. I worry about him, you know.”

“I know, Myeonnnie--what the f--give me a heart attack, why don't you?!”

“What? What is it?”

Yixing laughs into Baekhyun’s neck, burying his face there as Baekhyun practically sings, “Hello boys,” at their friends now standing at their feet.

Junmyeon rolls his eyes and walks away muttering about disrespect while Jongdae crosses his arms. “Yah, have you two been here this whole time?!”

“Maybe,” they say simultaneously, then snicker against each other's skin.

“And you didn't think to say anything?”

Yixing peeks at his old friend to find that he doesn't seem genuinely angry, though his curiosity is evident. He never has overnight guests. “It may have crossed our minds but…”

“We thought we’d play hide and seek instead,” Baekhyun giggles.

“Were you--god, you two are scarily in sync.” Jongdae makes a show of pinching his nose. “Go shower, hyungs, I can smell the sex from here.”

~*~

“Would it be weird to ask to borrow some underwear?” Yixing asks once they’re inside Baekhyun’s bedroom. “I’m all out. Need to do laundry.”

Baekhyun doesn’t relent his grip on him from behind, arms wrapped snug around Yixing’s waist as he kisses along his back. He giggles, clearly still drunk on the afterglow of orgasm. “I think we’re long past that being weird. But you don’t need to borrow any.” He interrupts Yixing’s protest by letting go of him and moving over to one of his dressers. He pulls open a drawer and tosses underwear at him.

“Hey, these are mine.” Yixing frowns down at them as Baekhyun snorts.

“We’re not exactly careful about where we toss our clothes when we fuck, y’know. I’ve found a few of your things. They’re all in here.”

Yixing peeks for himself to find a few t-shirts he’d only vaguely realized were missing, a dress shirt, a cap, another pair of underwear. “Oh,” he says.

He has his own drawer in Baekhyun’s home.

~*~

“I’ve been meaning to ask you,” Baekhyun murmurs, contently leaning into Yixing under the spray of the shower as he kisses every freckle on Baekhyun’s body he can reach. “When do I get to visit your apartment, huh?”

“You want to?” Yixing gently presses his lips against the mole at the corner of Baekhyun’s upper lip. “I don't think you would like it much. It’s small and cramped with my things.”

“Just because it’s small doesn't mean I won't like it, darling.” Baekhyun reaches for the shampoo and squirts some into his hand before working it through Yixing’s hair, fingernails scratching soothingly along his scalp. “I feel bad that you always come here.”

Yixing hums. He hasn't really thought twice about it. About the amount of gas he uses, or the food he spends money on because Baekhyun shouldn't have to pay for everything. But he shakes his head. “You live closer to work than I do, and you’re so much busier than I am. You bring your work home with you a lot, too. This is easier for you.”

Baekhyun frowns throughout washing the shampoo from Yixing’s hair. “But what about you?”

“Me?” Yixing hands Baekhyun the conditioner. “I don't care where we spend the night as long as I get to see you.”

The way Baekhyun blinks up at him is so ridiculously innocent, Yixing has to stop himself from kissing him, to give him a moment. They've said a lot of things lately in the thralls of sex, very indicative of their seemingly mutual feelings, but they usually avoid the affectionate verbiage outside of sex. Neither of them are quite ready to really go there yet, he thinks.

What happens if one of us gets attached?

We end it.

“Yah,” Baekhyun murmurs after a moment, scrubbing conditioner into Yixing’s hair. “What about weekends, then, yeah? Me and you, hot dates in your bed.”

Yixing thinks his bed would be a hell of a lot more comfortable with Baekhyun in it. He nods. “I think that could be arranged.”

Baekhyun’s smile is too brilliant not to duck down and kiss it. “Mm. Conditioner should sit for a minute,” Baekhyun whispers before slinking his arms around Yixing’s neck and reattaching their mouths.

A few minutes later, when Yixing is washing Baekhyun’s hair instead, he asks with a playful smile, “Yah, Baekhyunnie, then when are you going to come see me at work, huh? Everyone else comes to see me. Even Heechul hyung.”

Baekhyun giggles and shakes his head like Yixing is being too cute.

And maybe the non answer and the nervous flicker in Baekhyun’s eyes should catch Yixing’s attention, but he’s too busy admiring the moles dotting Baekhyun’s skin again to register it.

~*~

Baekhyun’s name falls from Yixing’s lips in desperate pants, pleas. “Baek, Baek, ah--harder--please--” he demands, face to face with himself in the bathroom mirror, leaned over the counter of Baekhyun’s bathroom sink obscenely as his deliciously curvy hips thrust relentlessly, filling Yixing’s ass so perfectly. Always so fucking perfectly.

The mirror play is new for Baekhyun. He’s actually a little timid, only shyly meets Yixing’s eyes every now and then, stares at the reflection of Yixing’s muscles flexing attractively when Yixing closes his eyes. Baekhyun never looks away quickly enough though.

It’s cute. Yixing never would’ve thought Baekhyun had a shy bone in his body. It’s a little refreshing, really.

Baekhyun bites his shoulder blade and digs his nails into the side of Yixing’s neck where his hand rests, where it had grasped for purchase, and Yixing drops his head as he cries out.

“You need a collar or s-somethin’,” Baekhyun grumbles before sliding his hand into Yixing’s hair and tugging harshly.

Tears spring forth, blurring Yixing’s vision and he begs for more, begs for it faster still, harder.

It takes a few moments for Yixing to regain some normal semblance of speech. “Y-You want to choke me so bad, Baekhyunnie,” he pants. “I know it.” Baekhyun’s steady, pounding thrusts falter and he pulls Yixing’s head back, exposing his throat to the mirror. “Your pretty hand wrapped around my neck,” Yixing murmurs seductively. He wraps his own hand around Baekhyun’s wrist and slowly pulls his fingers from his hair, guides Baekhyun’s open palm to his throat. His fingers line up with Baekhyun’s and press them down until they’re cupping his neck.

Now Baekhyun can't stop staring into the mirror. He licks his lips. “I’ve never… We never finished talking about this--what if I hurt you?”

Yixing smiles softly despite his chest heaving desperately, but Baekhyun still looks nervous. “Look,” Yixing laughs a little, trying to ease the worry. “We don't do anything we aren't comfortable with, right?” Baekhyun nods. “You don't have to do it if you don't want. But I was looking up some different options for us to try first. Here…” He slides Baekhyun’s hand a little higher. “Keep your hand above my adam’s apple like this. And then press upward. It won't cut off my breath, just my voice.”

“You’re sure?” Baekhyun glances back and forth between the scene in the mirror and the tips of his fingers curling around Yixing’s throat.

“I’ll tap out if I need to, baby.”

Slowly, Baekhyun applies pressure.

Yixing gently nods, holding eye contact in the mirror. “Fuck me--nngh!” Surprising him, Baekhyun tightens his grip, effectively trapping his voice as his hips work back toward their previous pace.

Baekhyun plasters himself against Yixing’s back and starts sucking a mark onto his skin. He peers over Yixing’s shoulder, gazing at his own hand in the mirror almost darkly.

Even though no actual breathplay is happening, Yixing’s senses feel heightened. His skin tingles where Baekhyun’s teeth graze, burns where his hands lay. He can't move like this, not one inch, and come drizzles from his dick threateningly at the feeling of his fate being completely in Baekhyun’s hands.

Baekhyun sees it in the mirror and groans, hips stuttering. “Fuck, you’re so hot. E-Even more into--this than I am, a-aren’t you?”

Yixing just sort of wheezes his agreement. Yeah, he might be. He and Luhan had messed around with legitimate breathplay before. It’s dangerous, but fuck the orgasms they had.

“Do you--” Baekhyun interrupts himself with a needy moan. “Do you th-think we’ll be late for work?”

“N--” Yixing attempts to say no, we’ll just miss breakfast but Baekhyun squeezes his hand a little tighter. He baited him.

Yixing gasps for breath, eyes rolling back with the force of his pleasure, and the hand not squeezing his neck slides around his front until it’s wrapping around his cock and pumping him quickly, an easy feat with the amount of come he leaked.

The noises Yixing makes sound like his air supply has been cut, and the way he has to force himself not to writhe to relieve some tension just builds toward his orgasm faster.

“God you l-look amazing,” Baekhyun moans into his shoulder. “Can't believe how good my hand looks around y-your neck.”

Yixing whimpers. Sort of.

“Gonna come for m-me? Come for me, ge. Sh-Show me how much you love this.”

That’s really all it takes.

He taps Baekhyun’s hand on his neck twice as his release washes over him, drowns him, and when his neck is freed, he falls forward, bracing himself heavily on his hands and gasping and moaning and watching himself come all over Baekhyun’s hand and sink once his vision has stopped whiting out.

Baekhyun’s already filled him up by the time Yixing comes down from his orgasm. Baekhyun breathes heavily, head resting against Yixing’s back. “Fuck,” he gasps. “Fuck.”

They stay that way until they’ve caught their breaths and calmed down. And then Baekhyun slowly pulls out of him and spins him around to face him.

Yixing’s neck is suddenly attacked with nose nuzzling and soft kisses, and he closes his eyes and gently sinks his fingers into Baekhyun’s hair. “I’m okay,” he promises in a whisper, scratching his nails along Baekhyun’s scalp comfortingly and opening his eyes again.

“Are you sure?” With one last kiss just above Yixing’s adam’s apple, Baekhyun blinks up at him uncertainly.

Yixing kisses his lips, slow and sweet. Baekhyun looks dazed when he pulls away. “I wouldn't have encouraged you to do it if I didn't trust you, Baekhyunnie.”

He trusts him wholeheartedly.

Visibly swallowing, Baekhyun throws his arms around Yixing’s neck and crashes their mouths together as if their lives depend on it, until Yixing has to wrap his arms around Baekhyun’s waist, lifting until Baekhyun circles his legs around him, and blindly, still consumed by the kiss, Yixing walks into the bedroom.

He gently lays Baekhyun down and stays locked in place by his leg grip.

They kiss and kiss and kiss. Yixing makes Baekhyun giggle and hum contently with little lovebites to the neck and jaw, forgetting their obligations for the sake of enjoying this, enjoying each other like this as if they don't spend everyday together now.

They’re late for work.

~*~

It’s after lunch when Jongdae comes in for his personal training schedule, instead of his usual morning appointment.

“You’re glowing,” he comments upon seeing Yixing.

Yixing snorts. “And you’re gloomy.”

“Yah, Yixing.” Jongdae plops down on the nearest bench and starts taking off his dress shoes. “It’s been the longest day ever. I wanna go home.”

“So go home.” Yixing shrugs.

Jongdae grumbles, “You go home.”

Laughter bubbles up in Yixing’s chest and he pats his friend’s head. “Grumpy Dae. You… might want to stop changing out in the open.”

Jongdae frowns and glances down at where his hands are unbuttoning his pants. “Oh. Yeah.” He sighs dramatically. “Carry me to the locker room, hyung.”

“Negative, grasshopper.” But Yixing picks up Jongdae’s gym bag and starts carrying it to the locker room for him instead.

Jongdae grunts and groans in protest but squeezes Yixing’s shoulder and thanks him under his breath.

He wakes up, so to speak, with a little time in a seemingly stress-free zone. But this also means he’s more observant. “Yixing! What happened to you?” he questions when they’re back out on the floor, tilting his head and leaning closer to Yixing’s neck.

Yixing is clueless. “What?”

“Your neck, hyung.” Jongdae leans even closer before pursing his lips. “Ah. Looks an awful lot like... fingernail… marks…”

Heat rushes to Yixing’s face and he wraps a hand around the marked section of his neck, just now noticing that it still stings. “Ah--well--”

“Say no more.” Jongdae pats his shoulder with an amused smirk. “I can’t keep up with you guys anymore, hyung.” He laughs. “I think you two are into even kinkier stuff than Junmyeon and Mi--”

Jongdae stills and turns away, busying himself with treadmill settings as if he actually knows what he’s doing. Yixing stares incredulously. “Uh, and who?”

“What? I was just gonna say Junmyeon and me! Me, myself, and I!” Jongdae chuckles nervously and Yixing, right on time, suddenly flashes back to Minseok casually chatting about how often he spends time with Jongdae and Junmyeon. How Minseok is always watching them. Baekhyun is always teasing Minseok.

Yixing never thought-- “Oh my god, Jongdae.”

Jongdae’s hand stutters on the settings and he nearly goes flying from the machine. He jumps off of it, hanging from one of the hand rests, beet red. He turns the treadmill off. “We are not talking about this.”

Yixing bites his lips between his teeth, trying not to smile, and shakes his head in agreement. “Oh no, not here at least.”

Jongdae whines, but is saved by the bell. Or, more accurately, the girl delivering coffee to Yixing.

He forgets about Jongdae and his own neck for just a moment to greet the girl warmly and accept the cup from her. “Thank you.” He bows a little. “I’m sorry you have to come here most mornings.”

She giggles a little and shakes her head. “You always apologize, Yixing-ssi, but I don't mind!”

Yixing chuckles good-naturedly and the girl parts.

With his back still to Jongdae, he plucks the bright pink post-it note from the coffee and stares down at it. Baekhyun had switched to post-it notes a few weeks ago, claiming it’s easier to get away with drawing on those than on random coffee cup sleeves. Yixing blushes against his will and laughs to himself.

The drawing today is a fox holding a heart balloon.

“What kind of animal do you think I’d be, Yixing ge?”

Yixing squints his eyes, amused. “Um?”

Baekhyun just laughs. “I don’t know. Humor me.”

“...A fox.”

“A fox?” It almost looks like Baekhyun is pouting. “I feel like I should be offended.”

“Why?!” Yixing laughs disbelief clear. “Foxes are mischievous and charming, beautiful and graceful. It was a compliment.”

Yixing doesn’t realize exactly what he’s said until Baekhyun is on top of him and kissing the life out of him.

A curious Jongdae suddenly peeks over his shoulder. “What’s that?”

“Nothing.” Yixing carefully hides the drawing from view and sips his coffee, vanilla and cinnamon blooming deliciously on his tongue. He hums. Baekhyun always knows what Yixing will like.

Jongdae reaches around him and snatches the pink paper from his fingers. He snorts. “This is actually really cute. Who would send you th--”

Yixing slowly sips his coffee and doesn’t bother turning around.

Jongdae isn’t having that though, stepping around Yixing to face him. “Is this from Baekhyun?!”

They both glance around from the way Jongdae yells the name, but they’re still alone in the gym. “Who?” Yixing feigns innocence and snatches the drawing right back from Jongdae, heading for his office.

“Zhang Yixing!”

“I can’t hear you~” Yixing sing-songs.

“Lies and slander, hyung. I’m a very loud person!”

~*~

Jongdae makes it through his run on the treadmill without bugging Yixing.

And almost all the way through his bench pressing.

“Is that the first drawing he sent you?”

Yixing avoids eye contact. “No.”

“He buys you coffee.”

“...Yes.”

“And sends a drawing with it.”

Yixing sighs.

“How often??”

“I don't know. Every other morning?”

Jongdae makes a sound of surprise. “Is he courting you?” He asks, bewildered, and he places the barbell in his hands back in its place, then mutters to himself, “This explains so much…”

He sits up and Yixing shares his bottle of water with him. “I doubt it,” he says automatically, shrugging and promptly ignoring flashes of a raspy voice telling him to stay in bed, the feeling of arms clinging to him and lips pressing against the back of his neck. They’re spending their first night in Yixing’s apartment this upcoming weekend, having had to cancel before when Baekhyun had unexpected work. It feels like some sort of milestone. “You said yourself that Baekhyun doesn't date. He gets what he needs from those parties you guys throw.” From me. From me.

“First of all, I do not throw those parties.” Jongdae grabs his towel from the floor and wipes his forehead. “Second, yeah, true, but--? He doesn’t hunt anymore, not since you came along. He never puts this much effort into someone. Never spends this much time with anyone.” Never sleeps with anyone more than twice, Yixing remembers. The third time for them was never even a question, just like every other time since then. “Like. Yixing. He attaches drawings to your coffee that he buys for you. Also you were in his apartment on a Sunday morning a couple of weekends ago and I didn’t even think--that’s--oh my god, you guys are--”

“We’re not.” I couldn’t sleep without you last night, ge. You make my bed so much warmer. “You sound much more in awe about this than you should be, considering it’s not happening to you,” Yixing muses, a little distantly maybe, as he adds two pounds to each side of the barbell.

Jongdae whines at the sight but continues on after another swig of water. “You have no idea how big this is for Baekhyun. Like. Fucking! Byun Baekhyun! Actually interested in one specific person!”

Yixing freezes.

There’s no way--

No.

No.

“Byun?” No. No no no.

“...Yeah…?” Jongdae stares up at him uncertainly.

Yixing’s going to be sick.

Realization dawns on Jongdae’s face and his eyes widen. “Oh my god--you didn't know he’s a Byun. Oh my god. He never told you his surname?!”

He’s pretty sure Baekhyun doesn't know his either. Maybe something they should've discussed. How did they never discuss it? Yixing shakes his head, suddenly intensely focused on adjusting the barbell weights. “Who is he.”

Jongdae’s voice is small, a stark contrast to his usual loudness, but it’s because he knows where this is going, “The CEO’s son.”

Yixing’s hand slips and he has to step away a moment, hide his expression from his friend because this is no good. Yixing’s gone and gotten himself attached to the CEO’s son. Yixing could get fucking fired for this, so much more than he would’ve been for some random in advertising.

“I thought you knew,” Jongdae says, a little miserably. “It’s why I--I tried to stop you the night you met, but then you talked for so long and you still went back so I thought--He’s literally the face of this company. Like literally his face is everywhere, in this building, on the internet. His business trips are to promote in other countries--”

“I’m always in here,” Yixing murmurs. “I don't see much more than the first floor lobby, the coffeeshop, and here.” A drawn out pause. “I could get fired, Jongdae.”

Another pause. “Yeah.” Jongdae sounds dejected. “I just--thought you two knew what you were doing. I thought you were just fucking.”

Yixing can hear it in his voice, the way that Jongdae can see right through him. Because Yixing wouldn't have reacted this way if he and Baekhyun “were just fucking,” if Yixing didn't care. He would end it and that would be that. “Yeah,” he responds darkly before turning toward his office. “Sorry. I need a moment.”

“Yeah. Yeah, sure.” Jongdae sounds so concerned and Yixing just hates that he’s put himself in this position.

His phone pings with a new message on his desk as soon as he plops into his chair and he has to take two consecutive deep breaths when he sees baekhyun in the new message bubble.

> baekhyun: i need out of this meeting zzzz
> baekhyun: snoozefest :((
> baekhyun: should we do something tonight?
> baekhyun: something… idk... special?

Why would they do something special? Yixing inhales through his nose and exhales through his mouth, head in his hand as he slowly types out a response.

> yixing: Could you come over, maybe?

There. Careful. Inexact. He doesn’t want to scare Baekhyun off before he can talk to him, figure out why he would do this to him. Baekhyun knows how much having this overpaying job at SM means to him. Why would Baekhyun put that in jeopardy?

A small voice in the back of his mind reminds him that maybe Baekhyun thinks Yixing already knew who he was. Why wouldn’t Yixing know who he was?

But the amount of times Baekhyun changed the subject from work, or the way he brushes off Yixing’s comments about Baekhyun coming to visit him in the gym are telling enough.

> baekhyun: i could definitely do that :)
> baekhyun: i’ll duck out from work a little early. i can be there by 6? is that ok?
> yixing: Works for me.
> baekhyun: you just couldn’t wait till the weekend, could you? ;))
> baekhyun: it’s ok tho. i can’t wait either :) <3

Yixing can’t bring himself to respond. He plants his face against the desk, and tries to breathe.

~*~

“What are you gonna do?” Jongdae asks quietly, as if speaking any louder will disrupt Yixing’s staring contest with his computer. They’re sitting in his office, approaching the end of their work day. Jongdae didn't have any meetings and planted himself on Yixing’s couch, doing work from his laptop. Yixing’s last two appointments mysteriously cancelled on him.

So they sit, Jongdae not-so-discreetly watching Yixing, and Yixing staring blankly at his computer screen, at Baekhyun’s face on the SM website’s homepage. “Talk to him,” he mutters.

“Amicably? Or are you gonna yell at him?”

“I don’t yell.”

Jongdae sighs. “No, I guess you don't.”

They fall into silence again.

A few minutes later, “Maybe he just likes you that much, Yixing hyung--”

“If he likes me that much, he would’ve said something.” He clicks away from the curly hair and kohl liner that he himself had washed away through the drain of the shower. It hurts more than it should. It shouldn't hurt at all. But it was right here all along, plastered all over the website Yixing never bothered looking at, because the job may as well have been handed to him and he needed away from his mother’s home.

Jongdae’s openly watching him now, concern etched into face. “Yixing, are you--”

“I’m not broken, Jongdae. I’m not going to fall apart. It’s not a big deal. I’ll talk to him, and we’ll stop seeing each other. That’s it.” Yixing wonders how long it will take him to get used to his uncomfortable bed again.

“Yixing--” Now Jongdae looks alarmed, as if he didn't expect Yixing to be so blunt, to just end whatever the hell it is they have.

“It’s not a big deal.”

Desperately, Jongdae sets his laptop aside and sits forward. “Xing--”

“Yixing hyung?”

Jongdae whips around and Yixing blinks blankly at the door, at Jongin. “Yes?”

“Are you--are you okay?”

“I’m fine.”

“Is it--is it about um… about Baekhyun-ssi?” Jongin whispers the name and Yixing is suddenly struck with the realization that people always whisper his name when talking to Yixing at work. How could he be so stupid? Why else would Baekhyun be busier than all of them? Why else would he go on business trips to other countries?

“Why would you assume that?” Yixing asks as Jongdae groans out, “God, did everyone but me realize it?”

Jongin’s eyes widen, like he’s scared, or has been caught, or both, and Yixing doesn't understand it, doesn't want to. “I just--he--w--um. I was just wondering. I-I hope you're okay. I’m gonna go back to work now.”

And he’s gone. “That was weird,” Jongdae says. “Endearing, but weird.”

“Whatever,” Yixing sighs, leaning back in his chair and staring up at the ceiling.

~*~

He starts cleaning his apartment before he realizes he has no reason to, no reason to impress Baekhyun. Byun Baekhyun. He finishes cleaning it because he started and because he hasn't spent more than half an hour here in awhile.

By 5:30, he has nothing to do and sits at his abandoned keyboard in his tiny bedroom and presses a few keys over and over again until 5:55, then he packs it away in his closet.

At six o’clock on the dot, there’s a knock on the door.

The smell of cinnamon floods his senses as soon as he opens the door and there is a bundle of Baekhyun in his arms before he can stop it, lips pressing earnestly to his.

It feels too fucking right. God, how did they lose control of the situation like this? What happened to their detached and airy talks after a good, rough fuck? What happened to their games?

Baekhyun is still in his work suit, but there’s a bag slung over his shoulder. He prances right past Yixing with a grin, shoes off, bag by the couch, taking the liberty to tour the small living room by himself. Yixing sits on the couch and watches him. Baekhyun is so fucking happy to be here.

“Is this your mom?” Baekhyun gently asks, stopped and staring at one of the two pictures on his shelf on the wall. The other one is from university, of himself, Jongdae, and Luhan.

“Yeah,” Yixing manages to murmur.

Baekhyun smiles and touches Yixing’s much younger face in the picture of him and his mother. Yixing looks away. “She’s beautiful,” Baekhyun says.

“Thanks.”

Yixing is on the verge of leaving the room to get himself back together when he suddenly has a lap full of the other man, who wraps his arms around Yixing’s neck and kisses him soundly. “Are you okay?” he asks, dropping another kiss. “You’re quiet.”

“Ah--”

“Are you nervous because I’m here? You shouldn't be. I like it. Sure it’s small, but it’s nice. Homey. I wouldn’t mind--”

Yixing’s voice sounds too choked when he says, “I need to talk to you.”

Baekhyun freezes. “What?” He blinks slowly, and Yixing can see his mind immediately coming to the worst conclusion. “What is it?”

“Why…” Yixing shakily inhales. “Why didn't you tell me who you are?”

“Wh-What do you mean? I’m Baekhyun, you know that--”

“Byun Baekhyun.”

Baekhyun sits back on his haunches, on Yixing’s knees, hands leaving Yixing in favor of fiddling in his own lap. “Oh.”

“Oh?” Yixing smiles ruthfully. “That’s all you have to say, huh?”

“Yixing, I--”

“We both work for a company with an anti-romance policy. I’m only working there to earn the money for my future dance studio, making money I wouldn’t be able to make anywhere else, and you couldn't even be bothered to let me know that every fucking day I was jeopardizing that future?”

“Xing--Yixing, please--my father has no idea--”

Yixing shakes his head, exasperated, and makes to move Baekhyun from his lap, who reluctantly goes but grabs Yixing’s wrist as he stands up. Yixing tugs it free, pinching the bridge of his nose and moving a few steps away. “I thought you--I thought you understood. I thought you… supported me.”

“I do!” Yixing can feel Baekhyun approach behind him, but he doesn't close the space. “I had it under control, I swear--”

“You couldn't even be bothered to tell me.”

“I-It’s not like that, Yixing. At first it was nice that you didn't know, that you- didn't expect anything from me as the future CEO of SM--”

Yixing’s head drops with something resembling a scoff and he shakes away from the fingers gently trying to latch onto his hand. “Future CEO.”

“I don't want--”

“Am I really just that stupid? I must be, right? You’re everywhere. I took a walk around after I found out. I looked at the website. You’re fucking everywhere and I had no idea. You go on all these trips that Kyungsoo hyung doesn't even go on. You’re a million times busier than the rest of us.” Yixing inhales deeply. “We--”

“How long were you fucking Oh Sehun anyway?” Baekhyun asks sharply, suddenly. “Why wasn't it a big deal with him?”

Yixing’s body whips around of its own accord, finally facing the other man again. Baekhyun’s cheeks are flushed in a way he’s never witnessed before, maybe because he’s never seen Baekhyun this upset, not really at least. His lips are more downturned than usual, his eyes wide. Innocent. But he’s not innocent here. “I had just gotten here. I hadn't really caught on to the policy yet, but when I did we were just fucking. Once a week maybe, like me and you were in the beginning.” His mouth doesn't stop before he says, “It’s not like I was fucking falling for the CEO’s son when I was with Sehun.”

The little gasp in Baekhyun’s throat can barely be heard over the roaring in Yixing’s ears. He’s so angry. He cares about Baekhyun so much, but he’s so fucking angry. “Yixing, I--”

“We were supposed to end it if one of us got attached. That’s how this works.”

“But we both got attached! Yixing I don't know if I can go back to how it was before I met you--”

“Well you have to. Because you clearly don't care about me the way I care about you.”

Wide eyes grow even wider, shinier than usual. “But I do, Yixing. I’ve never felt--”

“I-I don't want to hear it,” Yixing whispers. “We’re done.”

“Yixing--”

“Done.”

Silence envelops them uncomfortably. Baekhyun looks like he’s waiting for Yixing to change his mind. Yixing just wants the floor to swallow him whole. “So what?” Baekhyun eventually says, shaky and avoiding his eyes. He looks hurt. Yixing pretends not to notice. “This is really it, then? I’m too rich for you? I’m n-not worth the--the wait?”

“It’s not like we were actually together, Baekhyun.” Yixing pointedly doesn’t think about the spare toothbrush in Baekhyun’s personal bathroom. The fact that he hasn’t spent the night in his own apartment in over a week. And for over a week before that. The drawer. “And I don’t care how rich you are--since when is that the fucking point? This is my job you’ve been fucking with. I live in a shoebox so that I can set aside the money I work my ass off for and open up my own studio someday. You did everything you could to avoid me finding out who you are even though it could have cost me my job. When I--When I trusted you so wholly.”

“I wouldn’t have let him fire--”

“Would he really have given you a say?”

They meet eyes then. It takes a moment for Baekhyun to compose himself, tears dripping down his cheeks. “I would have fought for you.”

“Baekhyun, you’re my boss’ son. You’re my boss! They would listen to you least of all over something like this!”

“I don't know what you want me to say.”

Yixing doesn’t know either. He wanted to talk this through but every time Baekhyun opens his mouth it’s just not good enough. “I want you to apologize, and to leave me alone.”

“Yixing--” Baekhyun sobs.

“Just go, Baekhyun.”

Yixing doesn't know how long he stares at the floor while he waits for Baekhyun to leave. He collects his bag and makes his way back over to Yixing.

Yixing flinches when Baekhyun kisses his cheek, smudges their tears, and whispers, “I’m sorry.”

When Baekhyun is halfway out the door, he stops and says one last thing. “I would’ve done anything for you. To save your job.”

He’s gone before Yixing can say anything more.

Yixing grips his phone in a fit of anger, ready to throw it, and only when it lights up does he realize the date.

March 14th.

should we do something... idk... special?

Happy White Day.

Chapter Text

Yixing hates flying.

Yixing hates the regulations for getting on a plane, he hates the feeling of his ears popping, hates the way the free water tastes, hates peanuts, the headache he ends up with every time. But mostly he just really hates that there’s nothing really to do but think. Think and think and think. About life, about work, about Baekhyun.

He can't stop fucking thinking about Baekhyun.

It’s been a week since Yixing has seen him, since they “broke up,” he hears Jongdae’s voice in his head saying. Yixing would be remiss to think he’s doing well without him. He isn’t. He’s barely slept, and more than once found himself with his thumb hovering over the call button under Baekhyun’s name, desperate for the undying warmth the other man always offers.

Ridiculous, he thinks, as the old man next to him snores away without a care in the world and Yixing is stuck wide awake and remembering how soft Baekhyun’s skin is beneath his palms, the way his lips always peppered Yixing’s neck with kisses when Baekhyun would burrow there, ready to sleep for the night.

Yixing can't even run his fingers through his own hair without thinking that it’s not as soft as Byun Baekhyun’s.

Ridiculous.

He lands in Changsha when he’s just on the verge of pulling his hair out and is happy for the should-be-distraction of waiting for people to exit the plane and wrestling his carry-on bag from the overhead bin. Only then, his focus tunes in to the suits surrounding him, the space, the fact that he’s in first class for the first time in his life and it hits him so fucking suddenly, that even here, even this, he’s only here because of Baekhyun, because he got this flight cheaper than he would have using his own account for a coach ticket. Because he used Baekhyun’s account instead.

“Come on, Xing,” Baekhyun laughs. “It’s not like I’m offering to pay for your flight. But I can get you a discount. Who doesn’t love discounts?”

“Okay, okay, Grandma,” Yixing teases. He had just gotten the okay today from work, that he could take a small leave to make this trip home, and he’s both excited and nervous. He misses home. “I’ll take the discount if it’ll shut you up.”

“Please,” Baekhyun scoffs, but he’s beaming and scrambling over to his desk and laptop. “You love my voice.”

“Depends on the occasion.”

“Funny guy.”

“You love my funny.”

“Hmm. Depends on the occasion.” They both laugh and Baekhyun waves him over, getting up from his desk chair. “Okay, come here.”

Yixing rolls off the bed and shakes the sleeves of Baekhyun’s oversized cashmere sweater over his hands as he walks, sealing them in warmth. He doesn't miss the possessive once-over Baekhyun gives him, in Baekhyun’s sweater and nothing else but his own boxer briefs. Yixing sits in the chair and immediately has a koala attached to his back, nuzzling into his neck while he scrolls through the list of airlines and times and prices.

“I’m gonna miss you,” Baekhyun whispers so quietly it almost isn't there.

Yixing pauses and tries to turn his head to look at the other man, but Baekhyun just burrows closer, face hot against Yixing’s neck, embarrassed. “We’ll be okay.” Maybe. He chuckles anyway and tugs on Baekhyun until he’s nestled on Yixing’s lap. His view of the laptop is mostly obscured, but he’ll make do. He plants his lips firmly against Baekhyun’s before he can hide again. “Besides, you leave me all the time. It’s my turn.”

Someone clears their throat behind Yixing, and he starts, realizing he stopped moving and was blocking the last few passengers from leaving. He apologizes and bows and clutches his small suitcase to his chest as he hurries to the front of the plane.

He doesn't have any checked luggage, so he beelines for the exit and almost, almost misses the giant sign reading ZHANG YIXING, but more importantly, the two people standing behind it.

Something akin to a whimper escapes him, but he’s smiling as he falls into a warm group hug with his oldest friends in the book. “What are you guys doing here?” he mutters, moving to hug only Yifan, who somehow seems taller even though it’s only been seven months since Yixing has seen him (them both) and they're long past the growing age.

Yifan hugs him back like he’s going to scoop Yixing up and carry him out the door and Yixing smiles into his shoulder before he’s pulled from Yifan’s grasp and into another. “You didn't tell us what time your flight landed but we figured it out, asshole,” Luhan answers, squeezing him tight.

“Lu ge,” Yixing almost whines, but he’s happy. He’s so happy.

Luhan squeezes him impossibly tighter. “Missed you, kid.”

“Aiyo, how many times do I have to tell you--”

His friends chime in simultaneously, “Don’t call me kid; I’m not that much younger than you.”

They laugh and Yifan takes Yixing’s suitcase while Yixing himself falls into step with Luhan, plastered to his side, arms wrapped carelessly around each other’s waists.

“I missed you guys,” Yixing mutters into Luhan’s shoulder, staring up at his profile, letting himself be led. Luhan has an angelic face, and the side of it is no different. It’s always been an interesting contrast to his rock band t-shirts and dramatically ripped jeans.

Luhan smiles at him. “Welcome home, baby.”

~*~

“You’re being quieter than usual,” Yifan observes from the backseat of Luhan’s car as they leave the airport.

Luhan adds, “Clingier, too,” as he pats Yixing’s hand that’s been picking at Luhan’s ripped jeans since they got in the car. “Don’t tell me Seoul changed you, baby. Did working for a big ol’ corporation do it? Did they brainwash you?” He laughs and Yixing offers a smile that’s too weak to be genuine but no one seems to notice. “Come on,” Luhan whines. “Fill us in! It’s not like we’ve heard from you much lately, you know.”

“I’m sorry,” Yixing frowns, fingers curling around one of the rips he’s been playing with, sliding against Luhan’s skin. “I didn't mean to--”

“It’s okay,” Yifan says. “We know you, Xing. You just get really focused on whoever’s around you.”

“Right…”

“So you made some friends out there? Other than Jongdae, I mean?” Yifan asks.

Yixing nods. “Yeah, I met some good people.”

Luhan teases, “Anyone that matches your ridiculous sex drive? How’s that guy you told me about a while back, huh?”

Yixing laughs, but like his smile from before, it doesn't seem quite right. He stares out the window as silence falls over them all finally. They're catching on. Luhan’s fingers curl around his own. “Should we--”

“I don't want to talk about it,” Yixing murmurs. “I’m fine.” A deep breath. “What have you guys been up to anyway?”

He watches the sights he’s missed so dearly fly by, blur into unimaginable shapes and colors as Yifan reluctantly begins filling him in about his work at his animal shelter. He breathes in deep, considers never exhaling, and listens. He’s okay. He’s with his lifelong best friends. He’s not sixteen and torn up over some crush. He’s fine.

Or at least hopes to be.

~*~

Everything is the same. Yixing runs his fingers delicately across every notable item in his late mother’s living room as if it’s foreign, as if he didn't live here most of his life. It’s all the same, just how he left it. Cleaner, at least. Yifan’s been tending to it for the past week or so in preparation for the estate sale they’re having. The thought makes him sick. He doesn't want to sell his mother’s things, her house, but he’s at a loss otherwise.

It’s all the same, so why isn't he?

“You ready to go?” Yifan gently asks.

“I just--need a minute.”

With a sympathetic smile and nod, Yifan says, “Take your time.”

~*~

It takes Yixing completely zoning out, chopsticks idly pushing meat around his plate, approximately four times for Yifan to softy ask, “What’s his name?”

“I’m sorry--” Yixing starts, but Yifan flourishes his chopsticks like it’s not a big deal.

“Don’t apologize. I just wanna know the name of the guy I need to beat some sense into. Or the shit out of. Whichever sounds better to you.”

Yixing chuckles and nibbles on the end of his chopsticks thoughtfully. “Baekhyun,” he finally murmurs. “Byun Baekhyun.”

Yifan tilts his head to the side. “Don't you work for a Byun?”

“Baekhyun’s father.”

“Ah.”

Yixing nods minutely and sits back in his seat, resigned to his fate. “What do you want to know?”

“I’m not making you talk about it if you don't want to.” Yifan shakes his head. “There is actually something else I wanted to talk to you about anyway.”

That perks Yixing up a little. “Oh? I knew the dinner had a purpose.”

Yifan chuckles, but it’s nervous suddenly. “Look. I don't know if this will make you mad or happy or whatever, but I want you to be completely honest with me anyway, alright?”

“Okay…”

“I sort of…” Yifan takes a deep breath. “Liang Liang and I are looking for a house.”

Yixing smiles, though he thinks his confusion is evident. “That’s great, Fan! I’m happy for you.” He ignores the dread heavy in his gut, the thought of his things still in his drawer at Baekhyun’s.

“Thanks. That’s not it, though.” Yixing waits, a brow quirked. “I was--I’d like to buy your house, Yixing. Your mom’s house.”

The breath leaves Yixing as quickly as he breathes it in, his jaw on the floor. “Wh--”

“It’s in a great location. It’s in great shape despite it not being lived in for a while. It’s in our budget. But… Xing, it means so much to you. Most of all, I just don't want you to lose it completely.”

Yixing covers his watery eyes with a, “Wu Yifan, we’ve never kissed before but I have the sudden urge to change that.”

And Yifan laughs his dorkiest laugh and kicks Yixing’s shin under the table. “I’ll run that by my fiance.” Yixing laughs. “So you’re okay with this, Yixing? I don't wanna step on anyone’s toes--”

“I’m more than okay with this, Fan. I’m so happy. Thank you so much.”

~*~

Unfortunately, even knowing that Yixing isn't one hundred percent losing his childhood home doesn't make the estate sale the next day any easier.

“I feel sick, Han,” he mutters as someone hauls off his mother’s sewing machine. “I can’t sit here and watch her stuff be sold to strangers.” He’s at least glad he doesn't have to directly interact with the people coming in. His lawyer had brought in a couple of others to actually run the sale. Yixing and his friends just have to oversee everything, lock up when necessary, etc.

Luhan cups Yixing’s face, frowning. “Yifan will be here any minute, baby. As soon as he is, we’ll escape.” He kisses Yixing square on the mouth and Yixing’s throat goes dry. He somehow forgot just how casual he and Luhan used to be. His eyes fall to the other man’s lips and Luhan smiles mischievously. “Want another one?” Yixing nods numbly and grips the back of Luhan’s neck as they kiss again. Yixing needs this, he needs… something.

“You kiss different,” Lu Han murmurs into his parted lips, pecking them slowly once, twice.

Yixing swallows. He had just been thinking that Luhan is kissing differently, but it is Yixing, isn’t it? He’s used to kissing Baekhyun and only Baekhyun now. Baekhyun likes kissing slow and passionate, or hard and toothy. He always knows exactly how hard to bite down on Yixing’s bottom lip and somehow makes tongue-kissing feel graceful. Luhan, on the other hand, is always playful and sharp and dirty. He doesn't change his style to fit the mood.

He doesn't adjust himself to fit Yixing.

Maybe Baekhyun didn’t either. Maybe they just… fit.

Someone clears their throat and Luhan and Yixing hesitantly part, the former grinning wide. “I definitely missed you, baby.”

Yixing rests his hand on Luhan’s thigh and kisses his cheek, doing his absolute best to ignore the crushing weight on his chest. “I missed you more, Han.”

~*~

“So,” Yifan says when he walks up to them later. “I overheard two little old ladies talking about the pretty boys kissing each other in here.”

Luhan snickers and Yixing’s smile is weak.

Yifan chuckles. “You don't waste any time, do you?”

“I resent that!” Luhan exclaims. His movement with the words jostles Yixing’s hand on his thigh, and Yixing slowly withdraws it. It was cold anyway. “We have wasted so much time! XingXing has been here for 24 hours, Yifan!”

Yixing’s phone buzzes in his pocket, so he digs it out while his friends bicker, but immediately wishes he hadn’t.

> baekhyun: i know you’re pissed at me but i just need to know you made it to changsha safe and sound. please

“You okay, Xing?” Yifan gently asks, and Yixing locks his phone when he belatedly realizes Luhan was reading it and is now watching him curiously.

His phone buzzes with another message and he turns it off instead of reading. “I really need some air.”

“Go,” Yifan nods. “I’ll take it from here. I’ll--call Lu Han if I need you.”

~*~

Luhan takes Yixing on a walk around the neighborhood park first, for that fresh air Yixing needed. And then it’s shopping downtown, and then it’s dinner, and then… Luhan’s apartment.

It’s just the same as Yixing remembers.

“You wanna play with me, baby?”

Luhan is the same. Yixing isn't.

“Yes.”

In a second, Luhan is trapped between the wall and Yixing’s body as Yixing pins Luhan’s wrists above their heads and traps his earring between his teeth and tugs. Luhan moans. He is exactly the same.

“Strip for me,” Yixing whispers, yanking his own shirt over his head and taking the few steps back to the bed, dropping his pants before he sits down. Disappointment sits low in his gut when Luhan’s pants and underwear are on the floor in a flash, memories of sultry smiles and cashmere strip teases flooding his senses. Goddammit. He clenches his teeth and yanks Luhan on top of him.

He will not think about Baekhyun anymore.

~*~

“God,” Yixing breathes, frantic as he sucks a harsh bruise onto the inside of Luhan’s thigh, mercilessly fucking three fingers into him. “I haven't had my cock in anyone in so long.”

“S-Seriously?” Luhan’s fingers slip firmly into Yixing’s hair to force his face nose first into his crotch. Luhan would get off on someone lapping at his balls like a dog if anyone had the patience. Yixing offers a teasing lick. “Wh-Who--ah--are you and wh-what have you done with my Yixing?”

Yixing’s fingers gently spread inside the other man. “He wouldn't let me--” Yixing distracts himself with a mouthful of ball and Luhan keens.

“Wouldn't let you?” he questions, hips pushing against Yixing’s hand. “You? So you bottomed for him ev-everytime?” Yixing hums affirmatively. “Fuck--god, fuck, that’s--different. I thought you needed ass. You know, to r-recharge your dick.”

“Call me bionic man,” Yixing mumbles as he frees his mouth and removes his fingers from Luhan’s ass, but he’s smiling, so that’s something. He grabs the lube and slathers it on his prematurely wrapped cock; a result of his own overeagerness to fuck someone again.

He will not think about Baekhyun anymore.

“Maybe…” he murmurs seductively as he crawls up Luhan’s body. “Maybe last time charged me up enough to last me this long, hm?” There’s no use in mentioning Yixing had someone else between Luhan and Baek--him.

He watches Luhan’s pupils dilate as he no doubt remembers. Yixing’s last night before he moved to Seoul; there was a going away party that they ditched two hours in, ten minutes less if you include the ten Yixing spent sucking Luhan off under the table of the club they were in while Luhan held said table for their friends–who were all out dancing–and bit at his nails to stop from emoting the pleasure he felt from Yixing. Luhan dragged him out of the club, friends and table forgotten, and they fucked all night long, round after round, until they couldn't physically take it anymore.

“Fuck,” Luhan breathes into Yixing’s parted lips. “I still get off thinking about that night sometimes. One of our best.”

“Agreed.” Yixing reaches for Luhan’s haphazardly dropped plaid overshirt on the side of the bed, and uses each arm of it to tie Luhan’s wrists above his head. It’s ironic, Yixing thinks, that this was always his and Luhan’s game first. “Okay?” he murmurs.

Luhan stretches beneath him, a lazy, catlike grin on his lips. “Perfect. Have I mentioned how much I’ve missed you, and this?”

“It doesn't hurt to hear it again.” Yixing quickly lubes up his cock.

“Good,” Luhan says. “Now fuck me.”

Yixing doesn't need to be told twice.

He sinks in, nails digging harshly into Luhan’s slender hips, taking it as slowly as he can even though his body is screaming at him to take take take.

“You’re going to strain something,” Luhan laughs. He squirms beneath him and Yixing’s resolve cracks. “I'm fine. Let it all out, baby.”

And Yixing does. He’s relentless in his pace, in his motions, snapping his hips sharper than he ever has, he thinks. Nails biting, teeth too, he grunts more than he moans, and stays upright more than he does horizontal, because he doesn't need intimacy, he insists to himself, he needs this: unadulterated, wild, careless sex.

Luhan just takes it all, writhes beneath him, moans obscenely enough to make the neighbors blush, probably, begging for more, chanting an incoherent string of baby and Xing and yes over and over and over again. Even when Yixing fucks him so hard his head slams into the headboard, Luhan just curses and urges Yixing to scoot back but keep going, as if he knows Yixing can’t stop.

Yixing can't stop because one breath will exhale his resolve and inhale the memories of Baekhyun pressing at the edges of his memory, the guilt. God, why does he feel so guilty?

Why does he feel like he’s cheating?

It’s too much, there’s too fucking much weighing down on his shoulders and he’s biting back tears when he pumps Luhan’s dick just once before his friend is coming between them, moan broken from undying pleasure, while Yixing breaks from undying grief over losing who he’s quickly realizing was the most important person in his life, his other half, maybe.

His impending orgasm stalls with his distress, body torn between pleasure and wanting to break down sobbing over being so goddamn stupid, but Luhan surges up, seeming to sense this, and hooks the back of Yixing’s neck with the shirt connecting his wrists and tugs him down to the bed with him. He kisses Yixing with too much tongue, breathless, drags it along Yixing’s jaw, his ear, eliciting a quiet moan. Yes, Yixing thinks. Distractions.

Luhan nods as if he heard him, pulling skin between his teeth. “Yeah, baby. Made me come so hard.” He swirls his tongue around the bite, rocking his hips to meet Yixing’s mindless, erratic thrusts. “Barely had to touch me. Missed you too much.” Picking up the pace, Yixing moans with every pant that pushes past his lips, that familiar pleasure spreading from his groin again. The more noise there is, the quieter his head is. Simple. Good. “No one fucks me as good as you do, baby.”

The dirty nothings, the dry and wet kisses, bites, continue as Yixing presses his forehead to the pillow and latches his teeth onto Luhan’s shoulder, snapping his hips, focusing on Luhan’s voice telling him how hot he is when he loses control, how Luhan could come again just like this, how Luhan wants to tie Yixing up and ride him till the sun rises.

It’s a good image. Great, even. Only when Yixing imagines the possibility, moans over the thought of Luhan riding his dick all night long, it’s not Luhan he’s picturing at all.

Yixing comes with a shout, partly of frustration.

Luhan coos and praises him, moaning as if he really might be getting worked up again, and by the time Yixing pulls out, he’s on autopilot, numb. Silence falls between them and when his legs feel less like jelly, he’s up and fetching a towel, disposing of his condom, trying to breathe.

He avoids Luhan’s gaze as he rubs the towel down his best friend’s chest, along the insides of his thighs and ass. But when he tosses the towel aside and climbs back in bed, there’s no more avoiding.

“You’re so far from fine,” Luhan whispers, turning onto his side. “Talk to me, Xingxing. What’s going on?” Luhan is rarely serious, and it somehow just makes Yixing feel worse.

He swallows. Avoids. “Do you feel okay? That was–” Rough. Intense. Or maybe only Yixing felt that.

”I’m fine,” Luhan exclaims, exasperated. “But you aren’t. You can't keep it bottled up, baby.”

Yixing can. He will.

A sharp exhale hits Yixing’s shoulder. “What did this guy do that’s got you so fucked up, Xing?”

Yixing has no intention of answering, only his mouth has other plans as he whispers, “What you never did. He needed me. Really wanted me.”

“Xing–”

“Thank you for never needing me like I wanted.” Yixing gulps. “I never–I wouldn't have wished so badly for it if I knew it could hurt like this.” Yixing puts his back to Luhan and faces the wall, if anything just so his friend doesn't see the tears welling up in his eyes. This is so stupid.

“Oh, baby…”

“Goodnight, Han. Don’t forget to accidentally spoon me in your sleep.” Luhan doesn't like cuddling, he claims, but the minute he falls asleep he turns into a koala, attached to anyone’s back if they’re near enough.

But Luhan prematurely scoots in and wraps an arm around him. “I’m sorry,” Luhan whispers. “Goodnight, baby.”

~*~

Yixing doesn't sleep much, or well–he's not sure which it is, really–but only rolls over to knead his eyes once he feels Luhan detach himself from his back and go into the adjoined bathroom.

He blinks up at the ceiling, hand slowly rubbing along his chest. He has to get out of this funk, but his skin crawls with withdrawal and his heart sinks with the deepest disappointment every time Baekhyun so much as edges at his thoughts.

Something small bounces on the bed next to him.

“Check your messages, baby,” Luhan mumbles, voice just on the edge of too rough. “Jongdae left me like a hundred messages asking if you’re okay ‘cause no one’s heard from you. Missed that whining, I did.” He sits down next to Yixing and runs a hand through his hair, free hand brushing along Yixing’s hip over the sheets and eyes still half-closed. “Should talk to someone, Xing. If you don't want to talk to your best friends, maybe you need to talk to the asshole that made you feel like this.” Luhan sighs. “Why do you go for the assholes?”

Luhan’s frown is self-deprecating at best, but Yixing jumps to defend Baekhyun before he even realizes what he's doing. “He’s not–” He sighs, biting the inside of his cheek. “You're not. If that's what you're getting at.”

Shaking his head, Luhan leans down and kisses Yixing’s lips. “Check your messages, baby. I gotta get ready for work.”

”I gotta get ready for work. Lucky you, not having to go in till noon.”

”Mmh, I’ll get up with you. I’ll just--”

Lips press insistently against Yixing’s. “Go back to sleep. Just lock up with the spare when you leave.”

Yixing remembers holding Baekhyun against him, kissing him longer, running his thumb along Baekhyun’s damp bottom lip as he sighed into Yixing’s mouth.

Yixing doesn't do that with Luhan.

He lets his eyes fall shut again and doesn't respond to Luhan’s words but to blindly grab for his phone and find the power button, pressing it until his phone wakes.

He is avoiding everyone, not just Baekhyun, he supposes. The most irrational part of himself blames them just a little bit. They knew who Baekhyun was, and they know what Yixing’s biggest goal in life is. It should've been a simple deduction that Yixing would never risk his plans this way; he never would have jeopardized his job just to lay with Baekhyun.

...Right?

But he thinks he’s angriest at Junmyeon, of all.

The more he thinks back, the more he realizes Junmyeon really knew. Junmyeon was always watching them, always seeing these unexpectedly intimate moments and never said a thing. The others had only seen what Baekhyun wanted them to see, the flirting, mostly, but Christmas is when everything started to change and Junmyeon saw it all, probably even their kiss in the kitchen, and he didn't do a thing.

Yixing waits until his phone stops buzzing in his hand to look at it. It takes a while, but most read the same.

> jongdae: hope you made it okay, hyung!

> sehunnie: Text me when you make it plz

> kyungsoo: Did you land safely?

The majority of the messages are from Jongdae, increasingly frantic as Luhan had experienced, along with a few voicemails and more worried texts from Junmyeon and Sehun.

But Yixing’s stomach knots up at the sight of the text message that made him turn off his phone in the first place.

> baekhyun: i miss you so much it hurts

Me too, Yixing thinks. Me too.

~*~

The rest of Yixing’s trip home is a blur.

He meets with realtors, his lawyer, spends a lot of time getting the things that didn't sell out of his mother’s house, and a lot of time reimagining the house with Yifan. Yixing thinks Yifan is only humoring him, distracting him, but it mostly works so he doesn't say anything.

Yixing spends the night with Luhan every night, but they don't have sex again after that first time. Yixing apologizes for ruining it, and Luhan tells him about Tao, the guy he thinks he might actually get serious about.

Yixing is happy for him, really.

He visits a distant aunt, whom he never really knew well but she reached out, so why not? She frets over him not looking like he eats enough and feeds him stale cakes and he can't help but think how cliché it is.

He drives back and takes a jog around his old neighborhood when he leaves to burn off the awful desserts, chuckling a hair bitterly at his aunt’s curiosity over why he doesn't have a girlfriend.

He spends hours wandering around his little town right outside Changsha on foot, as if he hasn't been there in a decade. It hasn't even been a year.

He walks so far he has to take a cab back to his car.

He does not think about Baekhyun.

~*~

If Yixing thought everyone was hounding him upon landing in Changsha, it’s much, much worse when he arrives back in Seoul.

Luckily he’s gotten over his irrational grudge against everyone–going home was therapeutic in its own way after all and this is all on Yixing anyway–but being back on the same soil as Baekhyun apparently means that everyone can talk to him about Baekhyun, and all Yixing does is go straight from the airport to his apartment, yet he’s fucking exhausted.

are you going to talk to baekhyun?

What are you going to do about Baekhyun?

Baekhyun didn’t show up to the party at Junmyeonnie hyung’s last night…

Yixing doesn't care. He’s trying not to at least, and Jongdae, Minseok, and Sehun aren't making it any fucking easier.

In a bit of a fit, Yixing notes that it’s a reasonable time on a Saturday night and calls Kyungsoo before he can stop himself. Everyone wants him to talk? He’ll talk to someone on the outside of it.

“Wanna come over for drinks?” he asks when Kyungsoo picks up. “I just got back.”

“Um, sure. Is everything okay?”

“Fine. I just need an ear, if that’s okay.”

“Sure. I’ll be over in an hour?”

“Works for me.”

It gives Yixing time to go to the corner store and restock his kitchen, and he orders takeout from the Thai place closeby while he’s there and picks it up on his way back.

Kyungsoo calls his name from the street when Yixing is struggling to get into his apartment building, too many bags in hand. He turns to find Kyungsoo jogging toward him from his parked car, messenger bag over his shoulder. He’s in the dressed down version of his work clothes, sans tie and blazer.

“Were you at work?” Yixing hands him the takeout and soju bags, balancing the rest on one arm so he can open the door that leads to his hallway.

“Work has kind of been hell this week. I needed to catch up on some things.” Kyungsoo moves through the door first, at Yixing’s prompting. “It’s my first Saturday in a while, don't worry.”

Yixing hums. “What happened? Is there another summit or whatever? Is SM buying someone else out?”

“No it’s nothing like that. It’s--” Kyungsoo sighs and when Yixing turns to look at him, his lips are pulled down, angry. “More unnecessary issues upstairs, as usual.”

Upstairs. The CEO level. Yixing wonders if that mysterious office on the other end of the hall belongs to Baekhyun. It must.

“Anything you want to talk about?” Yixing asks.

Kyungsoo shakes his head as they arrive at Yixing’s door. “No. You sounded like you want company for a reason. Is something wrong?”

Biting his lip, Yixing chooses his words carefully. There is risk in this that he didn’t consider before. “I need you to be my friend right now, okay?” Yixing pleads quietly, unlocking his door. “I need a friend that has no idea what’s been going on, not my boss. Please.”

Yixing feels Kyungsoo nod more than he sees him. “Of course, Yixing, what’s wrong?”

“Let’s just--” Yixing sighs. “Let’s get settled with food first, yeah?”

They do just that, sipping beer with their Thai--they’ll save the soju for later--and using the TV as white noise. It’s comfortably quiet at first, Kyungsoo chuckling as he recounts having gym sessions with Jongin in Yixing’s absence, and how scared Jongin had seemed, intimidated.

And then unwarranted, Yixing sighs, sinking back into his couch and cupping his takeout container against his chest. Kyungsoo turns to him, gives him his full attention. “Talk, Yixing.”

Yixing nods, only whispering a gentle reminder of, “Friend, not boss,” before diving in head first.

He starts from the beginning, how he met Baekhyun and the instant connection they had, their eventual agreement to keep going, et cetera. But he leaves it ambiguous. He doesn’t say a name, doesn’t even hint at who Baekhyun is, even if he’s not sure why. Maybe he wants someone else to experience it the way he did, wants someone else to be just as shell-shocked as he was.

“This sounds…” Kyungsoo furrows his eyebrows at his own lap. “It sounds like you found someone really great for you, so… what’s the catch here?”

“There’s a company-wide anti-romance policy,” Yixing murmurs, and Kyungsoo quirks a brow at him. “I… I didn’t know I was--sleeping with the CEO’s son.”

Yixing is warm with his third beer in his hand, sluggish as he stares into the can as if it holds all of the answers, but even that doesn’t keep him from noticing the change in Kyungsoo’s posture, the way his back stiffens and jaw clenches, and Yixing sighs because his beer can doesn’t hold all the answers.

“I know you hate him because of work, but--”

“I don’t hate him because of work.” Kyungsoo tosses his head back with his beer, chugging the rest in one go. “Time for the soju, I think.” He stands abruptly, and helps himself to Yixing’s kitchenette, grabbing the bottles from the fridge and double-shot glasses from the cabinet while Yixing cleans up the empty food containers and beer cans. He’s nervous, for some reason. He feels like Kyungsoo has a story now, and if it’s a story about Baekhyun, Yixing doesn’t quite know if he’s ready for that.

“I’ve known Baekhyun for a long time,” Kyungsoo murmurs as they sit back down. He hands a glass to Yixing and pours him a shot. “Before we started working together at SM.” When Kyungsoo’s glass has alcohol as well, they clink them and throw them back. “We went to private school together.”

Yixing takes the bottle from Kyungsoo and pours them new shots. They drink them quickly.

“I had--” Kyungsoo chuckles darkly. “--the stupidest crush on him. We were friends. His mom had just died and he was a mess. And young. He’s smart, had skipped a grade early on. He didn’t want to be in private school or work for his father or anything. Most kids there thought he was crazy. They all knew who his father was. But I knew what it was like to be forced into something you don’t want to do.” He holds his glass out for more alcohol and Yixing obliges. “My parents were determined I would take over their farm, of all things. They didn’t understand when I wanted sketchpads to draw, or a cheap video camera to make my own music videos or commercials. So. I understood him.”

Yixing snorts, muttering, “So cute,” under his breath. They’re drinking too quickly, he can feel it, the alcohol buzzing beneath his skin. His vision blurs if he turns his head too quickly so he steadies his gaze on Kyungsoo’s profile.

“He’s charming.” Kyungsoo shakes his head. “He’s always been charming and when we went to university together, became roommates, I knew I wanted to be with him.”

Yixing blinks down at his trembling hands. Kyungsoo’s are shaking too. They ignore the weird tension and drink another shot.

“We slept together. It started when we got drunk one night. Exhausted and drunk, I kissed him, he climbed on top of me, and that was that.”

“Did he…”

Kyungsoo shakes his head. He grabs the unopened bottle on the coffee table and drinks straight from it. “I was naive and happy to be with him. It went on for weeks before I realized it was just sex. That he treated Junmyeon and his other friends the same way he treated me outside the bedroom.” Kyungsoo sways a little. “He laughed when I told him how I felt, called me silly, even. Then he just patted me on the head and left for class. He just left me there to drown in humiliation ‘n didn’t even s’much as offer an ap-apology.”

As quickly as humanly possible, Yixing downs the rest of the bottle still in his hand and drops it on the floor. “Fuck.”

“He’s a fucking asshole,” Kyungsoo grumbles. “And he doesn’t fucking care ‘bout his job. Mine would be s’much easier if he did.”

Yixing falls head-first into Kyungsoo’s lap, settling there and groaning. “This sucks. I thought talking would help. This sucks.”

“We’re drunk, aren’t we?” Kyungsoo sighs but tips his bottle back again anyway. “Did he really fall for you?”

“I dunno. Probably not.”

Kyungsoo’s fingers tangle in Yixing’s hair, oddly affectionate. “He must’ve.” He sighs. “If what you told me’s true, he must’ve.”

“Doesn't matter anyway,” Yixing murmurs, eyes falling shut under Kyungsoo’s ministrations. “‘M clearly destined to be alone.”

“Nah.” Yixing listens to Kyungsoo take another sip. “You’ll find someone.”

“Maybe.”

Kyungsoo scratches Yixing’s scalp comfortingly. “If I didn't love Chanyeol, I’d date you. You’re--” he hiccups. “--a catch.”

Humming, Yixing nods. “If I didn't lo--” His body goes rigid. No, that’s not right. A slip of tongue. A drunken claim.

“I know,” Kyungsoo sighs out. “I’ve been there. Probably know better than anyone else.”

“Sorry.”

“For what?”

“Bringin’ up bad mem’ries. Had no idea.”

Kyungsoo hums. “Sorry he’s an asshole.”

Yixing shrugs to the best of his ability. “You really love Yeollie?”

“Did I say that? Hmph. Yeah, I do.”

“Good.”

“Hey, if things don't work out with Baekhyun and Yeol, let’s just get married, ‘kay?”

Yixing giggles. “‘Kay!”

They chat aimlessly as they finish the rest of the second bottle of soju through their unwarranted laughter, and fall asleep tangled up on the couch, warm and content.

~*~

“--the fuck. Are you two sleeping together now? I can’t fucking keep up, jesus christ.”

Yixing struggles to pick his head up from the warm chest it’s resting on, peeling his eyes open until he’s blinking up at what looks to be a blurry Oh Sehun. “Ge’out,” he rasps, dropping his head back down, but the action startles Kyungsoo awake.

He groans. “Does Oh Sehun have a key to your apartment?”

“No,” Yixing says into Kyungsoo’s shirt. If he squeezes his eyes shut, everyone will stop talking, right? “Knows where the spare is.”

“Why would you give him that kind of power?”

“No fuckin’ idea.”

“I’m right here,” Sehun whines. “Hyung I’ve been trying to call you all night.”

Yixing’s eyes open at the sound of his voice. It’s not whiny or playful or bratty; it’s angry, upset, hurt. Yixing sits up, ignoring the way the room spins. “What’s wrong?”

“Jongin. He-He slept with Baekhyun. I hadn’t even figured out if Jongin liked guys too and Baekhyun just--did it again. Just like he took--”

Silence falls over the three of them, save for Kyungsoo’s deep sigh. He sits up and squeezes Yixing’s shoulder. “An asshole,” he repeats quietly. “I’m going to borrow your bathroom, if that’s okay.”

Yixing just nods, mindlessly making more room for him to get up from the couch. He drags a hand down his face. He doesn’t know what he feels. Anger and hurt like Sehun? Or is it just resignation that it’s all really over? Can it be all of the above? When Kyungsoo closes Yixing’s bedroom door behind him, and then the bathroom door, Yixing pats the couch for Sehun to sit next to him. “What happened?”

Sehun shrugs. He looks rather resigned, himself. “I invited him over last night. I was even thinking about making a move or something, maybe… I don’t know.” Sehun sags. “He was quieter than normal but I didn’t think… ah, hyung, I’m so angry. What does Baekhyun hyung have against me, huh? First you, and now…”

Yixing couldn’t explain it if he wanted to, though he suspects it’s merely coincidence. Doesn’t make it feel any better, though. “What did Jongin tell you?”

Sehun shrugs again. “It didn’t happen recently. He just--feels bad because he thinks he messed things up between you two. He said it was over a month ago--” Yixing’s chest aches, it hurts just like that, because over a month ago he was spending most nights with Baekhyun, in their little domestic bubble. “--Hyung invited him over for dinner. Jongin didn’t really know why, but said he felt honored. Then I guess Baekhyun seduced him, I don’t know. Jongin said he had a lot of fun but that afterwards he felt kinda weird about it, because even though Baekhyun assured him he wasn’t dating Yixing hyung--” Yixing doesn’t like the uncomfortable churn in his stomach, the way it just adds to the hurt. “--he felt like he had done something bad, and that Baekhyun seemed sad afterwards.”

Leaning forward, Yixing rests his elbows on his knees and drops his head into his hands. He’s too hungover to feel shitty feelings like this. He guesses he isn’t resigned after all. Just fucking hurting. “I’m sorry,” he whispers, for lack of anything better to say. He probably inadvertently caused this anyway, right?

But unexpectedly, Sehun rubs a hand up and down his back before leaning forward too and resting his cheek against Yixing’s shoulder. “I’m sorry, too, hyung.”

Yixing doesn’t know how long they sit in silence that way, wallowing in each other’s pity like children.

But after a while, Sehun quietly asks, “You really liked him, huh?”

“Yeah.” No use in denying it.

“He really liked you.”

“Don’t.”

“Sorry.”

Another silence stretches on before Sehun asks, “Do you love him?”

Yixing blanches, internally. There’s that word again. Do you love him? Do I love him? “I don't know,” he whispers, but Sehun hears the pain in it and sits up to pull Yixing into his arms.

Yixing closes his eyes and breathes.

Chapter Text

Yixing takes pride in the fact he doesn't flinch when a familiar hand cautiously sets a cup of coffee on his desk, in the exact spot he’s been staring at for the past ten minutes, waiting for this exact moment.

He’d gotten the notification on his computer when he arrived at work this morning--his first day back after going home--for a new appointment at eleven from an SM Inc. employee he’s never worked with before.

Byun Baekhyun, Jr.

He’s numb, indifferent, as he plucks the pink post-it note from the cup and reads it.

a treat for my trainer, and part 1 of my elaborate apology.

He’s numb, he swears, staring at the heart drawn next to apology, and he has complete control over his emotions… until his eyes land on Baekhyun’s face.

“Hey,” Baekhyun murmurs, smile shy, nervous, dull. He’s dressed down in gym gear. A sleeveless gray shirt and black shorts. His arms are as tense as his stance.

Yixing had wanted this to be a joke so badly, someone who knew him and wanted to play a sick, sick prank. He would've taken that over this. “There are so many other ways you could've done this,” he finds himself saying. He feels hot, anger boiling in his belly. He has no choice but to follow through with Baekhyun’s appointments as long as Baekhyun keeps scheduling them. It’d look too suspicious to refuse the future CEO.

“I’m glad to see you made it through your trip in one piece,” Baekhyun deflects, wringing his hands. He’s wearing fingerless, weight-lifting gloves. “I mean, people told me you looked okay but I hadn't seen for myself, and here you are! All in one piece. I know you were upset about having to go through your mom’s--”

Yixing shuts his eyes and rubs his temples with his fingertips. The post-it crumples when he does. “Why are you here, Baek?”

Baekhyun’s voice is smaller, less rambly when he answers, “The doctor said I’m consuming too much alcohol and takeout, not enough greens or exercise…”

“You went to the doctor?” Yixing asks, eyes flying open before he realizes the level of concern he’s showing.

Baekhyun sits down opposite from him, on the very edge of the seat. Yixing’s never seen him so nervous. “Yeah. I was--it was nothing. A check-up.”

“You don't believe in check-ups. You also don’t get sick.”

“It was nothing. I-I didn't feel well so Junmyeonnie made me go and this was the prognosis.”

Yixing sighs. Baekhyun’s probably lying about this, just like everything else. “How many personal trainers are there in Seoul? But you’re manipulating me into doing it--”

“This is literally the most convenient gym for me. I’m not manipulating you--”

“I have no choice in this, Baekhyun. How many times do I have to tell you this is my job; it’s not like I can just turn you away without raising suspicion.”

Baekhyun shakes his head, blonde hair falling across his eyes. It’s too long. “Fine, then stick me with Jongin-ssi or something--”

“No.”

The word cuts through the air between them, shocking them both, but Baekhyun’s face pales significantly. It’s all the confirmation Yixing really needs. “Yixing--”

Yixing stands up. “I have an appointment after you. We should get started.”

“You don't have an appointment after me, Xing.” But Baekhyun follows him out the door anyway.

“Call me by my full name,” Yixing snaps. “And stop digging where you have no business.”

“You don't keep your appointments in the computer; I saw your book on your desk just now!” Baekhyun cuts Yixing’s path off and faces him. “Why do you get to call me Baek, but I can’t call you Xing, Zhang Yixing?”

Yixing steps around him, avoiding Jongin’s and Minseok’s eyes across the room. “That was a fluke, Byun Baekhyun.”

“Stop throwing that in my face!”

“What? Your name? Whatever. Start stretching Mr. CEO-in-training; I’ll grab us some water.”

“Just because it’s my n--”

“Stretch.”

Yixing turns from him, brushes past a concerned Minseok and too-nervous Jongin, and squats when he opens the company fridge full of company water to feel the cold air on his face for a moment, to take as many deep breaths as possible.

“Yixing.”

“I’m fine, Minseok hyung.”

“You’re hiding in a refrigerator.”

“Am not.” Yixing doesn't move.

“And now you’re five years old.”

Sighing, Yixing grabs two waters and closes the fridge. “Not really in the mood to be teased right now, hyung.”

Minseok wraps a soothing hand around his arm. “Are you going to be okay?”

“If I can handle Mr. Li, I can handle this, right?”

Minseok doesn't look so sure.

Things are relatively quiet once Minseok leaves. He played the buffer as much as he could while Yixing led Baekhyun through stretches and preliminary tests with the equipment, but he had to get back to work eventually, parting with an apologetic smile while Jongin came up with some unheard excuse and ran for the hills.

Awkward silence fell over them once they were left alone, eerie silence. Despite the circumstances, Yixing can't wrap his head around a silent and reserved Baekhyun. Whatever confidence he had when he walked into Yixing’s office, little though it may have been, is gone, buried in avoided eye contact, avoided physical touch.

It’s hard to prep someone for training without talking to them, but Yixing will be damned if he doesn’t at least try the impossible.

“What are you doing here?!”

The unexpected voice comes at the worst possible time, startling Baekhyun so bad he fumbles the barbell in his hands; Yixing just barely saves his windpipe from being crushed, placing the bar back in place with Baekhyun’s hands over his, grip too tight, chest heaving.

“Y-You’re okay,” Yixing mutters. He wants it to sound cold, but that was too close and they’re both visibly shaken from the almost-accident.

“Yixing hyung,” Sehun calls from where he’s halted by Yixing’s office door, arms crossed over his chest.

Baekhyun’s water bottle is empty, so Yixing hands him his own, half-drunken one. “I’ll be right back.” Sehun walks into the office as soon as Yixing starts heading that way. He sighs at the sight of Sehun practically pouting on the couch. “Sehun--”

“Are you already sleeping with the enemy again, hyung? That was fast.”

“The enemy--no--Sehun he made an appointment. I can't turn him away.”

“You could--”

“So you want Jongin to train him?”

Sehun’s mouth twists unpleasantly as he looks away and shrugs. “Guess not.”

“Are you going to sit in here until I’m finished?” Yixing runs a hand through his hair.

“Yes, hyung. We have lunch plans. Unless you have new plans with him--”

Yixing checks his watch with pursed lips, trying not to be annoyed with everyone he sees today. “I’ll be ten more minutes.”

He walks out before Sehun can say anything else. Baekhyun’s sitting up on the benchpress now, head in his hands. “So Sehun chose you, huh?” he quietly asks.

“You think our friends have to choose sides?”

“Don’t they?”

“No.” Yixing busies himself with pretending to observe the weights behind the benchpress. “Besides, Sehun’s only pissed at you because of Jongin, really.”

Baekhyun picks his head up then. “What?”

“You seem to have a taste for whoever Sehun wants.”

”What?”

“Me, Jongin… except Sehun was actually courting Jongin.”

Baekhyun blinks shiny eyes up at Yixing, clearly mortified. “Sehunnie likes Jongin-ssi? I-I didn't know--I swear!”

Relief and anger flood Yixing’s body all at once. “So you only wanted to hurt me, then.”

Standing up, Baekhyun starts pacing and pulling at his hair. “I didn’t--I didn't do it to hurt you. I was being stupid. Things were so serious between us so suddenly and I-I panicked, freaked out, like my brain went into defense mode and said maybe it’s just because he’s a dancer, and… Jongin was the only other dancer I knew.”

“You should've talked to me.” Yixing leans with his hands holding the barbell too tightly, head down. “We should have talked about what was happening with us.”

Baekhyun stops pacing but keeps his back to Yixing. “Talking about it would've ended it.”

“Not talking about it ended it!”

Baekhyun sits back down, head back in his hands. “Am I really forcing you into this?” he mutters pitifully.

Yixing closes his eyes. “Kind of, yeah.”

Baekhyun doesn't say anything.

“Are you really ill or--whatever?” Yixing asks, looking up again. “You really went to the doctor?” Only a nod answers him. He inhales deeply as silence drags on, then he eventually murmurs, “I’ll come up with a fitness plan and--email it to you, I guess.”

That gets Baekhyun up again, but Yixing has to glance away when he sees Baekhyun’s undereyes wet with tears. “Really? I’m--you could just text it to me, or-or call me--”

Yixing shakes his head, refusing eye contact. “We’re not friends, Baekhyun. I email the plan to clients once it’s ready.”

Baekhyun whispers, “Okay,” and stands up. “I--should get going. Thank you, Zhang Yixing.”

“Byun Baekhyun.”

~*~

“You know it’s not impossible to date within this company,” Jongdae hesitates over his can of beer, next to Yixing on the latter’s couch. It’s Friday night. Yixing’s first Friday night in Seoul since he and Baekhyun separated. And despite Yixing’s resistance, Jongdae had insisted on spending the night with him. We’ll marathon FullMetal Alchemist! Come on! We haven't done that since uni! Yixing pretends not to feel like a child being babysat.

“Okay,” is all he says in return. He doesn't want to talk about this. It’s like the floodgate of conversation topics about Baekhyun have opened now that they’re “working together.” But Yixing still isn’t over it. He hasn’t gotten to breathe.

“Xing.” Jongdae turns his whole body to face him. “Talk to me.”

Yixing shakes his head, doesn't even look at him. “Nothing to talk about.”

“Yixing. Minseok and I have... been dating for about ten months now, and we’re doing just fine.”

Yixing had forgotten all about the accidental confession from before shit hit the fan. Jongdae, Junmyeon, and Minseok. Yixing had so many questions when he found out, and he’d forgotten them all in favor of his problems. Despite feeling like a shitty friend, all Yixing says is, “It’s not exactly the same.”

Jongdae sighs. “I know. But it’s… you guys have never even seen each other at work until now, and I mean, the only people who knew or suspected anything are all trustworthy people. I just think it wouldn't hurt to give it a shot if you want--”

“Can we please talk about something else?” Yixing whispers.

“Xing…” Jongdae’s voice sounds so pitying, it’s awful. “How did you--ah don’t get mad at me hyung but--how did you deal with your feelings for Luhan, huh? It was the same as this--”

“It’s not the same,” Yixing snaps, then he squeezes Jongdae’s knee in apology and sighs. “I’ve always been… infatuated with Luhan.”

Jongdae chuckles. “That I know.”

“That’s all it’s ever been, I think. Maybe it could've been more if he had ever wanted it, but he was so set in his ways, so then I just adopted his ways, too and pushed my feelings away.”

“You know, it took me like a year to believe you guys were just friends,” Jongdae says, reaching for popcorn on the coffee table.

Yixing laughs. “He was always my most casual arrangement.”

“No kidding!” the other man teases. “We would go out to a bar or something and I’d turn around for five seconds and then find Luhan on your lap or something.”

With a wistful sigh, Yixing pops the top on another beer. “We had fun, didn't we?”

“Yah, we have fun now! You found another Luhan and everything.”

Yixing shakes his head. “It really isn't the same.”

Now Jongdae sighs. “You two seemed casual, hyung. You two clung to each other, sure, but I saw more public displays between you and Luhan. I mean, other than that time Myeon and I walked in on you and Baek… in the living room? Yeah. Anyway. Myeon thought it was so strange, and you know what I said?”

“Hm?” Yixing is suddenly exhausted.

“They probably never went to sleep. That explains why Yixing is here.” Jongdae picks aimlessly at the popcorn. “And when Myeon said he walked in on you two kissing on Christmas? I just said, it’s the Christmas spirit.”

Yixing mumbles, “It was the Christmas spirit.” And something else. The beginning of the end. But Jongdae shakes his head.

“Baekhyun sticking to you like glue in the beginning should have been telling enough to us all, hyung. He doesn't do that. He allows himself to sleep with the same person twice, and never back to back. That’s it. He’s been weird about that since Junmyeon introduced me to him. But even then, I just kept telling Junmyeon, Yixing is just that good. Luhan used to go on and on about him all the time. I kept deflecting and thought you guys were detached and now you’re both heartbroken.”

“First off, breathe.” Yixing smiles weakly. “Second, you’re making this sound like it’s your fault. It’s not. It’s his, and mine. Period. It’s not your job, or Junmyeon hyung’s, or whoever’s.”

“But--”

“And it was Baekhyun’s choice to avoid PDA anyway. We didn't always avoid it, but I guess he wanted to for the sake of our jobs.” Yixing draws on the condensation of his beer bottle. “Behind closed doors was a different story.”

Jongdae slumps against the couch. “It really was more than infatuation, wasn't it?”

Yixing nods. “I was staying with him. We--We laughed because you and Junmyeon said Baekhyun never had overnight guests, but at that point I had been there for a week straight. And before that, another week, and so on. I was only staying in my own place if he had to work late or had an overnight trip.”

“You were living there?” Jongdae asks, disbelief evident.

“Sort of. Pretty much, yeah I guess. He--gave me my own drawer in his room and everything.”

“Whoa.”

“Yeah.”

“That’s--”

“Yeah.”

“How did no one realize this?”

Yixing shrugs. “No clue. Can we talk about your three-way relationship now?”

Color immediately floods Jongdae’s cheeks. “Uh…”

“You brought it up, Jongdae-yah! I have to know! How did it start? Did you immediately recruit Minseok hyung into your relationship--”

Jongdae snorts. “Recruit.”

“Shut up. I have to live vicariously through you now.”

“Alright, alright.” Jongdae shoves him. “It just kind of happened, honestly. Like? I don't know. Minseok hyung started coming to Baek hyung’s parties, we started talking every week, Minseokkie and me started having lunch at work, and one day the topic of Myeon and me sleeping with--”

Yixing raises his brows at Jongdae’s hesitance. “With Baekhyun,” he finishes for him.

“This is an okay topic? Okay, got it. Yeah, that got brought up one night and Minseok hyung suggested he might be interested in filling Baek’s place and…”

“You all fucked?”

“A few times, actually, and then I went through this scary phase where I realized I had real feelings for him and was devastated ‘cause Myeon is my dream guy, y’know?”

Yixing’s never really had a dream guy. Though he supposes if he did, Baekhyun would certainly fit the bill.

Jongdae laughs to himself. “Then Myeon worked himself up and accidentally spilled that he had feelings for Minseok. We all had a talk and decided to give it a try.”

“And…?” Yixing smirks. “That’s it?”

“Thaaaat’s it.”

Yixing narrows his eyes. “When you slipped up and almost told me about it, you said you thought Baekhyunnie and--” He clears his throats over the accidental nickname. “--thought Baekhyun and I were actually kinkier than Minseok.”

“Well we--he--uh. Ahh, hyung!”

“I talked about Baekhyun for you.”

Jongdae whines. “Minseok is--we’re sort of--his.”

“What.”

“Let’s just say he’s… dominant.”

“Oh my god.”

“Don't choke on your beer, hyung.” Jongdae pats him on the back a little too hard. “That’s why, um, Myeon and me do the couch thing at the parties. Minseok hyung likes watching us.”

Yixing shakes his head in awe. “This explains so much.”

“Yah, and not a word to anyone, alright?” A handful of popcorn is tossed at Yixing. “You’re officially the only one who knows. Baek is suspicious, but no one has actually told him anything.”

“Alright, alright.” Yixing rolls his eyes. “Though I think it’s safe to start telling people, Dae. Ten months is pretty sturdy for two people, let alone three.”

Jongdae shrugs. “I know. We just can't figure out when exactly it's a good time to be like, hey by the way, we’re also dating Minseok now! Tada!”

“Just spring it on everyone at the next party, which you are going to by the way.”

That earns him a sigh. “Fine.”

Yixing drags his finger around the rim of his beer can. “So do you guys call Minseok daddy or--”

”Ohmygod fuck off,” Jongdae screeches, shoving Yixing over and making him spill his drink. “You’re evicted from this household! Kicked off the island! You have lost all privileges to Kim Jongdae’s bank of secrets!”

“You know what they say about those who defend themselves too heatedly--”

“I hate you, Zhang Yixing!”

~*~

Things with Baekhyun go from tentative and awkward, to forward and frustrating quicker than Yixing can keep up.

He hasn’t forgotten the things Kyungsoo told him, and definitely not what happened between Baekhyun and Jongin, considering Jongin’s incessant--albeit sincere--apologies and Sehun’s moping are serving as his constant reminders, but even still, Yixing has been too nice to Baekhyun. He let him into his gym and personal space too easily, concern burning just beneath the hurt every time he sees Baekhyun’s dark, undereye circles and sometimes weak movements.

But he refrains from asking him about it for fear of caring even more.

He tries not to think about how it’s gotten easier to be around Baekhyun in the past several weeks, too, because he’ll find himself in moments when he’s not brewing in anger and upset, but snorting at one of Baekhyun’s lame attempts at lightening the mood, or helplessly staring when Baekhyun bends over, or strips himself of his shirt just before he enters the locker room.

It just takes him too long to realize Baekhyun is doing it on purpose.

His fleeting, “accidental” touches get bolder, the way he bends down becomes slower, his genuine smiles become just a little more mischievous.

But by the time the realization comes crashing down on Yixing’s shoulders, that it’s purposeful, that his guard is down, he’s alone with Baekhyun in the yoga studio and trying to instruct him on how to do certain yoga poses, how to release tension that is so clear in Baekhyun’s shoulders and entire body.

No, he doesn't realize until he comes up behind a bent over Baekhyun who keeps losing his balance, to rest helping hands on his hips.

It’s just to steady him, but he stands too close, and maybe it merely catches Baekhyun off guard at first, maybe he overcompensates when he suddenly has the balance he needs and that’s what makes him press his ass directly against Yixing’s crotch, because he stands up suddenly like he’s surprised, but the timing is terrible, Yixing’s fingers clenching on Baekhyun’s hips with the sudden pleasure, hitched breath hitting Baekhyun's neck.

Their bodies are lined up like this, heat emanating everywhere they touch, and Yixing is lost, lost with his lips an inch away from the skin of Baekhyun’s neck where it’s bared, Baekhyun’s head falling aside as he swivels his hips with purpose, pushing a soft moan from Yixing’s lips.

So Baekhyun does it again, pressing back a little harder, and again, one hand reaching back to Yixing’s hip to yank him impossibly closer, the other hooking around Yixing’s neck, pulling him down the remaining distance until his mouth clashes with salty, familiar skin, Baekhyun’s skin.

What are they doing?

Yixing jerks away, a gasp nearly choking him as he stumbles back, puts as much distance between them as possible. This can't be happening, Yixing can’t have given in this easily, he can't have let this happen like this, and at work. If anyone had walked in and seen them–

“Zhang Yixing, come back here,” Baekhyun murmurs, nibbling on his bottom lip, eyes on the partial-bulge in Yixing’s crotch rather than his panic-ridden face.

“No, stop. This is– no more. You have to fucking stop.” Baekhyun blinks the haze from his eyes and Yixing turns on his heels, hurrying toward the door. “We're done for the week. I need some– I need some space.”

“Whoa, Yixing, slow down–” Kyungsoo’s voice reaches him as he exits the studio, a hand gently grabs onto his arm, but another voice cuts in behind them.

“Zhang Yixing, wait–”

Yixing slips from Kyungsoo’s grip and beelines for his office across the gym, just barely catching Kyungsoo’s low, “What the fuck did you do, Byun?”

“Zhang Yixing!”

Breathing deep, Yixing closes himself in his office, pressing his back to the door.

He can't do this, he actually can't be an adult and handle this.

Why is this so hard?

“Zhang Yixing,” a soft voice speaks into the door. Yixing shuts his eyes. “I’m sorry. I wasn't thinking.”

“Me either.”

“I just got caught up. I mi–”

Me too.

“Anyway…” Baekhyun clears his throat. “I’ll cancel my Thursday appointment. Just–Just let me know after that, yeah?”

“Yeah.”

~*~

Yixing taps his fingers on the table, lip between his teeth. The buzz of people talking, music playing, glasses clinking around them is distracting, but he doesn’t really know if he hears any of it at the same time.

A loud, “Sorry, sorry!” startles Yixing and Junmyeon from their awkward silence, Jongdae settling down at their small table in the corner of the bar they’re occupying. “Jesus, who died?”

Yixing merely sips from his glass of beer, nodding at the waiter when he sets down the chicken wings and fries they ordered. Yixing likes western-influenced bars a lot, though he doesn’t really care for the soccer games always on the televisions hanging on every wall.

“This is ridiculous, you guys,” Jongdae sighs at their continued silence. “I’ve seen you handle Baekhyun better than this, Yixing.”

Yixing nibbles on a french fry too slowly. “Is he really sick?” he eventually asks Junmyeon’s nervous hands around his glass. “Did he really go to the doctor?”

“He’s not sick,” Junmyeon responds carefully. “But he did go to the doctor.”

“Did you go with him?”

Junmyeon nods, and Yixing waits.

“He wasn’t well. He couldn’t get out of bed. He kept missing work. He wasn’t eating.”

The familiar, unwanted concern bubbles up in Yixing’s chest.

“I made him go because I was worried. I just didn’t realize– he couldn’t function because--without you, Yixing.”

“It’s not like I hand-fed him while we were staying together,” Yixing snaps, but he knows the anger is misplaced, the response is irrational. He doesn’t want to be responsible for Baekhyun entering some kind of depression, and even more he doesn’t want to care. He doesn’t want to feel his heart being ripped to shreds or his eyes burning over the mere thought of Baekhyun being unable to get out of bed because of Yixing. He doesn’t want memories of sharing omurice on the living room floor flashing in his mind’s eye, or the knowledge that Baekhyun’s dark undereyes and weak movements are because of him.

He has to remind himself this is Baekhyun’s fault.

Isn’t it?

Jongdae’s hand reaches under the table and rests on Yixing’s knee as Junmyeon nervously responds to his outburst. “I know,” he says. “None of this is your fault, Yixing, I’m sorry. But I still worry and care about him, you know? He was wrong, but he’s still my best friend. I can’t choose sides when he needs someone so badly right now.”

“I never asked anyone to choose sides. We’re not twelve and most of you have known him longer anyway. But... did you know?”

“Know what?”

“That he was purposely keeping his surname from me?”

Junmyeon’s gaze falls to his lap and it’s answer enough, really, but he still quietly says, “I’m so sorry. I tried to tell him how stupid he was being.”

“Junmyeon,” Jongdae softly cries out, disbelief evident.

Yixing shakes his head. “You knew how serious we were getting. You saw it.”

Junmyeon just nods.

Dinner is quiet after that. Yixing doesn’t know what to feel; anger, concern, and resignation battling away inside him, all trying to come out on top and not really succeeding. But he feels sick with worry and thinks it might be winning.

~*~

Things seem to be okay after that.

Maybe Yixing is falling a little bit again, maybe he’s letting his guard down too easily, too weak to be around Baekhyun and not be affected.

“We could be friends,” Baekhyun gently suggests one day, his sweat-damp hair tickling Yixing’s neck.

They’re in Yixing’s office, having just finished a more rigorous training session, but Baekhyun had wanted to talk, so Yixing had sat down on his office couch, and Baekhyun had followed, sleepily, gently resting his head on Yixing’s shoulder.

“There’s no rule stopping us from being friends,” Baekhyun continues. Yixing’s hands fidget in his lap.

“We don’t know how to be friends,” he responds, but it’s weak, too weak.

“We can learn.”

“Look at me.”

Baekhyun does, putting their faces only a couple of inches apart, and the tension thickens almost immediately. Baekhyun’s cheeks color pink and Yixing’s gaze falls to Baekhyun’s soft lips.

Yixing looks away, scoots away. “That’s why we can’t be friends. I can’t get near you without wanting to kiss you, no matter how fucking mad I am at you.”

“Zhang Yixing…” It only takes a second for Baekhyun to close the distance between them again. “We can be friends if we try.” He takes Yixing’s chin in his hand, holding him in place as he places a slow kiss to Yixing’s cheek. “I’d like to try.”

And then he’s gone.

~*~

They try, and they fail, and succeed, and fail again.

Sometimes Yixing runs from Baekhyun, too overwhelmed to be around him or watch him bend over a little too seductively. Sometimes they have a quiet, somewhat awkward lunch together in Yixing’s office, Baekhyun subtly leaning into his space or stealing a bite of his fruit.

Sometimes a voice in the back of his mind tells him this is a trap, a trap for them to end up in yet another compromising position when he least expects it, but he doesn’t know why he ignores it.

“You’re an idiot,” Sehun mumbles one day, leaving Yixing’s office just before Baekhyun arrives, still avoiding him just as Yixing should be. “Hyung,” he adds for good measure, just before slipping out the door.

“Do you know what you’re doing?” Minseok asks on another, eyeing him with utmost concern. Yixing shrugs. No, he doesn’t, really. “Baekhyun can be a master manipulator in some ways. I just don’t want to see you get hurt even more.”

Neither does he, Yixing thinks, but his stomach flops in the most teenaged way when a smiling Baekhyun comes into view behind Minseok, laughing at something Amber is telling him. He’s seemed happier lately, livelier, even when he thinks Yixing isn’t looking. “I guess I’m a masochist,” he murmurs, uncertain if Minseok can even hear him. “Because I don’t want to see him get hurt even more either.”

Minseok just sighs and looks over his shoulder at the root of all of Yixing’s internal struggling, then shakes his head and squeezes Yixing’s shoulder before leaving for a meeting.

Baekhyun approaches, grin softening and bright like the morning sun.

And yet another day, it’s Jongdae during his training session, practically begging Yixing to run for the hills. “I don’t have a good feeling about this, Xing,” he worries, testing the weight of some dumbbells on the rack. “I get that you’re worried about him, I am too, but I’m more worried about you. Maybe Baekhyun needs to go through a heartbreak or something. You’ve already been through this.”

Yixing shakes his head, because no, he hasn’t really. Luhan never made him feel this strongly, Luhan never clearly reciprocated Yixing’s feelings, and he doesn’t know how many times he has to say it before Jongdae realizes it, but maybe he’s as in denial as Yixing is about all of this.

Yixing stops where he’s bent over, ready to lift a few barbell weights from where Jongin left them a few hours ago, and sighs. “I miss him, Jongdae.”

He doesn’t have to see his friend to know the way Jongdae’s expression softens, because he hears it in his voice. “I know, Xing. I know. But—“ Jongdae sighs too. “This is so messed up. I hate seeing you like this.”

Yixing just shakes his head, returning to his task, but when he stands up straight, pain sears right up his left side and he cries out, using every ounce of strength he has to not drop the weights on his feet.

Well, he hasn’t felt that in a long time, but it never takes much.

”Fuck—“

“Yixing!”

“Hyung!”

Jongdae is at his side before he can fall, and Sehun is there seconds later, supporting his other side by hunching over and wrapping one of Yixing’s arms around his shoulders.

“It’s his waist,” he vaguely hears Jongdae explain. “It used to flare up in uni. He usually has meds—someone call an ambulance!”

Yixing dry-sobs. “I’m out of pain meds.” He ran out when—well, the day Baekhyun took care of him, when his knees and wrist were hurt from too much sex on his knees. “Someone needs to tell Baekhyun—“ he’s reminded suddenly.

They’re slowly yet hurriedly inching their way towards the gym’s exit, but Jongdae freezes in his attempt to hold Yixing up and dig his phone from his pocket at the same time. “You want me to tell him?”

“No, no,” Yixing gasps out, black dots filling his vision. Holy shit he forgot how badly his bad hip could fucking hurt. “He’s my only appointment left today.”

Sehun scoffs, but it’s so muddled despite being right next to Yixing’s ear that he knows he should be worried; it wouldn’t be the first time he’s passed out from the pain. “Don’t tell him why hyung is cancelling, because then he’ll pretend to be a decent human being and bug us at the hospital.”

Yixing and Jongdae both fall silent for a moment, save Yixing’s grunts as they walk, but as they’re reaching the elevator, Jongdae exclaims into his phone, “Kyungsoo-yah! Yixing’s waist injury flared up. An ambulance is on the way but I’m going with—“

“He didn’t know, Sehun,” Yixing murmurs weakly.

“What?” Sehun huffs as he tries to readjust Yixing’s weight; the hunched position has got to be putting strain on his back.

“Baekhyun. He didn’t know you like J—“

Yixing cries out and his world fades to black.

~*~

A soft, broken voice stirs Yixing from slumber, but only barely. “Y-You never told me it could get this bad—“ There’s warmth around Yixing’s hand, and it squeezes. “You can’t do this Zhang Yixing. You can’t make me fall in love with you and then end up in the hospital like this.” The warmth trembles, even as it tightens.

“Baek…” another soft voice says. “Oh, Baek.” It’s closer now. Jongdae, Yixing vaguely realizes. “He’s gonna be okay. It’s scary to see him like this, I know, but it’s medicine-induced, yeah? He…” Jongdae’s voice fades, too muffled for Yixing to grasp an understanding of. He’s falling back asleep. “He’s going to be fine.” A sniffle, and the warmth around Yixing’s hand lessens for just a moment before it’s back. “They’ll probably keep him overnight to run some tests, do some x-rays…”

“...staying with him.”

“Baekhyun—“

“I’m not leaving him here alone!”

“I don’t know if he’d…”

Sleep wins and Yixing doesn’t hear anything else.

Later, when he really wakes, he manages to open his eyes and blink around the dim room. Warmth envelopes his hand, still but when he looks, it’s Sehun holding onto him, asleep with his head on the bedside.

Yixing wiggles his fingers, but it only manages to make Sehun’s eyebrows pinch, as if he’s confused. So Yixing somehow pries his hand from Sehun’s grip and runs his fingers through Sehun’s hair instead, petting him until his eyes blearily open and he stiffly sits up.

“Hyung,” he murmurs, rubbing at his eyes. “How do you feel?”

Yixing frowns before wiggling around a bit, turning this way and that, but he gasps, flinches when he pulls at his left side. It’s not nearly as bad as it was, but the pain medicine has worn off for sure.

He says just as much to Sehun, whose expression saddens even further. “Everyone’s worried,” he mumbles. “But Jongdae hyung keeps telling us you’ll be okay, that this has happened before.”

Yixing nods, cupping Sehun’s cheek with his free hand. “It has. I’m fine.”

“You’re in the hospital,” Sehun all but wails, but he presses into Yixing’s hand anyway.

Yixing just chuckles. “I fainted. Seems like a natural response. Plus, they have the good pain meds. The ones I’ll be taking once I leave won’t be near as good.”

“They said you’ll have to stay in bed for a few days.”

“Mm. Probably two tops, Sehunnie. I promise I’m fine. I’ll have to get surgery eventually but I don’t want it until it’s absolutely necessary.”

“You’re an idiot, hyung.”

“So you’ve mentioned,” Yixing comments dryly. Then, his brows furrow. “Was Baekhyun here? Or did I—“ Did I dream that?

Sehun hums. “Yeah. He went home.” Yixing ignores the way his stomach drops. “Jongdae hyung made him. I… I talked to him. About what you said. Or what you tried to say.”

“Oh?”

“I just assumed he knew. I thought I was obvious but I guess—I guess he was so fixated on you he didn’t notice.”

Yixing swallows. “So you forgive him now?”

“For my thing, yeah. For yours… jury’s still out on that one, honestly.”

“Wow, no solid decision?” Yixing teases.

Sehun bites his lip. “Jongin isn’t the only thing we talked about, hyung. I think—I think time will tell us everything.”

“Ah,” Yixing weakly mumbles. “When did my Sehunnie become so wise?”

“When you went and fell in love with a Grade A player.”

A laugh punches itself from Yixing’s chest at the unexpected comment, and just as unexpectedly, he shakes his head. “He’s not a player and you know it.” I know it.

Sehun just shrugs.

~*~

Yixing gets to go home early the next morning, to his relief, and unwillingly spends his day in bed surrounded by mostly junk food that he doesn’t dare actually look at as he eats, and a couple of sandwiches Jongdae prepared him when he dropped him off, more than enough to last him until someone gets there tonight to accompany him (all Jongdae’s stubborn insistence.)

He expects it to be Sehun who gently knocks on his bedroom door at around six, and is surprised to instead see Chanyeol, sheepish grin and all. “Sehun had something come up last minute,” he offers, edging awkwardly toward the bed before Yixing breaks into a smile and holds out his arms.

“Come on, then.”

Chanyeol grins and carefully snuggles into Yixing’s good side, long limbs somehow making themselves comfortable as they curl up to match Yixing’s smaller body. “I should’ve asked if you need anything before getting comfy,” Chanyeol mumbles into his shoulder.

Yixing laughs. “It’s okay, Chanyeollie, you can rest for a while. How was work?”

Chanyeol’s deep voice soothes Yixing into an unexpectedly relaxed state as he recounts his day and the gossip he heard surrounding Yixing being picked up by an ambulance. Yixing just chuckles and picks fun when Chanyeol gets all starry-eyed talking about Kyungsoo, making the kid blush and cover his cheeks and whine.

It’s nice, no, it’s fucking refreshing, because Chanyeol is sweet and caring and doesn’t mention Baekhyun once. He helps Yixing to the bathroom so he can use the toilet and quickly shower, he cooks a simple dinner for them to share, he takes out and plays a couple of songs on Yixing’s nearly-abandoned keyboard and he doesn’t mention Baekhyun once. Yixing could marry him for that alone.

They fall asleep curled up together after Chanyeol carefully stores the keyboard back in Yixing’s closet, Chanyeol humming some western song Yixing isn’t all that familiar with, and just as sleep is taking Yixing, Chanyeol murmurs, “I’m sorry you’re hurting.”

Yixing wonders if that counts as mentioning Baekhyun.

~*~

When Yixing stirs early the next morning, it’s to a soft, familiar voice trying to shake Chanyeol awake. “Come on, Chanyeollie. You’re going to be late for your shift.”

“Hm? Baek…?” Chanyeol picks up his head from where it was resting right next to Yixing’s. Yixing doesn’t have the energy to open his eyes well enough to see properly, but the blur hovering above them does distinctly resemble Baekhyun. “Wha’time isit?”

“Six-thirty,” Baekhyun murmurs.

“Shit,” Chanyeol groans, before Baekhyun shushes him. Then Chanyeol whispers, “What are you doing here anyway? Isn’t this—“

“I know,” Baekhyun interrupts. The bed shifts and Yixing realizes Chanyeol is leaving it, taking his warmth with him. “Jongdae and Sehun got called into a meeting last minute.”

“Wha’about Soo?”

“Kyungsoo? Meeting. Why?”

“They’re close. He could’ve come too.”

“They’re close?”

Chanyeol hums, but Yixing doesn’t hear his response as he leaves the room.

Fading in and out of sleep somewhat uncomfortably, Yixing doesn’t speak until the bed dips next to him. “Bathroom,” he murmurs.

“Okay,” Baekhyun quietly answers, getting right back up and rounding the bed to help Yixing out of it, making Yixing whimper at the unexpected pain.

“And--And meds,” he adds, eyes drooping and weight falling on Baekhyun.

Lips press against his temple. “It’s okay, I’ve got you. Come on.”

Moving around turns into a blur, and Yixing feels as if he merely blinks before he’s being carefully deposited back into his bed, bladder empty and medicine washed down with fruit he didn’t know he had. Baekhyun must have brought it with him.

His eyes are still barely open as he squirms to get comfortable, and against his better judgment, he catches Baekhyun’s hand and pulls him into bed as well. “Just for a lil’while,” he mumbles, carefully turning until his bad hip is facing the ceiling and his head is on Baekhyun’s chest.

Baekhyun’s body stiffens, and breath shudders out of him as his chest trembles, but after a moment he relaxes, arms cozily wrapping around Yixing’s body. He places another kiss in Yixing’s hair. “Okay.” Another kiss. “You scared the shit out of me, you know,” he whispers.

I’m sorry, Yixing tries to say, but he’s already pulled under by sleep.

And when he wakes again, he’s alone.

For just a moment, he wonders if he dreamt it, but the way the sunlight filters into the room suggests it’s early afternoon, and there’s a warm container of food in the empty space next to him with a pale blue post-it note attached.

Carefully, Yixing props himself up and plucks the paper from the container.

It’s a drawing of a fox holding a sheep, a quote bubble above his head full of hearts.

~*~

“Zhang Yixing, you should do a session in the spa.”

Yixing squints at Baekhyun as he plops down on Yixing’s office couch. “Why?”

Things have been… a little more open since Yixing has returned to work at full strength. They haven’t talked about Baekhyun taking care of him, or Yixing silently asking him to stay for a while.

Or Baekhyun’s maybe confession while Yixing was mostly unconscious.

In fact, they don’t talk about themselves at all, a silent agreement to not bring up their… relationship, or whatever it is. Was.

But Yixing can’t deny how much easier still it is to be around him, that the little niggling feeling in his stomach is the desire to have Baekhyun around, the need to be close to him, less in a longing way and more in a just… certain way. He still gets the feeling sometimes that Baekhyun is plotting against him somehow, remembers that Baekhyun in every respect is his boss, but he doesn’t get as annoyed anymore when Baekhyun openly flirts with him. Well, no, it’s still annoying as fuck, but Yixing has come to tolerate it more, he guesses.

(It’s annoying because Yixing wants to flirt back, every single time.)

“Because it’s nice?” Baekhyun’s voice rings into his thoughts. “Have you not taken advantage of the spa yet?”

“No…”

“Zhang Yixing!” Baekhyun scoffs. “Well, it’s your lucky day, because I booked you an appointment. It’s already paid for so you have to go.”

Yixing sighs, scratching his head. “But I can go for free whenever I want.”

“No, no, no!” Baekhyun wags his finger. “You don’t get the full session for free. Only Mr. Byun Sr. does.”

“You mean your father?” Yixing drawls.

“Semantics. I did some research, and the kind of massages the therapists in there do could help with your “sometimes bothersome,” to quote you, waist. I’m sure they do a much better job than I did that time--” Yixing glances away, furrowing his brows, but Baekhyun only fumbles momentarily over his slip-up. “Look, you passed out at work because it got so bad, and you were right, your mattress is kind of terrible. I’m sure it doesn’t help. I’m trying to help. Let me help--”

“Breathe, Byun Baekhyun, jesus. I’ll go, I’ll go. Just--calm down. When is the appointment?”

Baekhyun’s eyes have never shined so bright, it seems, only his smile rivaling it in this moment. “The day after tomorrow at 5:15. You get off at five, right?”

Yixing bites back his comment about snooping through the computer records and nods.

“Great! It’s gonna be great!”

~*~

When the day after tomorrow at 5:15 comes, Yixing is unreasonably shocked to find Baekhyun waiting for him. “...What are you doing here?” he asks, but he should have known. He should have known.

Baekhyun’s bright expression falls minutely, but he still blinks up at Yixing with a smile. “Was it not implied that it was a dual appointment?”

“No, not implied.”

“Oh. Oops.”

“Yeah. Oops.”

But the mischievous glint in Baekhyun’s eye suggests there is no oops involved.

~*~

Despite everything, Yixing is having a… nice time.

It’s unexpected, terribly unexpected, but one minute Yixing is tentatively entering the company spa for an apparently private session, and the next he’s lazily leaning against Baekhyun in the sauna, both in only towels and giggly on too much champagne. Baekhyun is playing with his hand and laughing too loudly at whatever comment spews from his mouth about fancy this and fancy that. Because it’s a fancy spa and completely matches Baekhyun’s tastes but Yixing is having a nice time.

It’s comfortable, too. Not just the fact that he’s with Baekhyun, but the fact that they’re really alone, other than the few workers who stayed behind to fulfill their appointment. The spa, to everyone else, is closed, and there are no security cameras here, just like the locker rooms and showers in Yixing’s gym.

He’s still nervous, wary, but… comfortable.

But then a third voice rings out around them, startling Yixing so badly he nearly falls off the bench he and Baekhyun are sharing.

“You two gay or something?” Mr. Li grumbles through the steam.

Of all the people--

Baekhyun’s fingers wrap around Yixing’s wrist gently; it’s intimate somehow, but comforting, like Baekhyun is saying he’s here, he’ll be the buffer. Baekhyun grins wide. “Why yes, we are very happy, Mr. Li, thank you for asking!”

Mr. Li’s eyes narrow. Yixing can’t believe he can see the beady little things from across the room. “I meant, do you two like boys? Each other?”

“Well,” Baekhyun pretends to ponder. “I really love girls.”

Yixing, done with this, honestly, cuts in easily, “I don’t.”

The sound Baekhyun makes is comical, his expression surprised as he turns to Yixing, but it only lasts a second before they’re both laughing, cackling and leaning into each other’s spaces again, the tension of Mr. Li’s arrival gone and nearly forgotten. Yixing pulls Baekhyun to his feet and they scurry from the sauna, the disgusted look on Mr. Li’s face only making them laugh harder. “Tata for now, Mr. Li!” Baekhyun exclaims. “I’ll make sure to inform my father of your creepy intentions, spying on a couple of innocent men in the spa, and all.” Mr. Li sputters, but they’re already gone.

“God,” Yixing chuckles once they’re in the towel room. “He’ll probably have me fired but I think the look on his face was worth it.” It isn’t, but Yixing is still simmering with champagne and warmth and is willing to believe it for just this moment.

“I’m sorry he was there. I don’t even know how he got in. I told them the whole spa was reserved for us and us only.” Baekhyun hovers close, casting a smile up at him, hand resting on Yixing’s waist. “Anyway, he can’t fire you. My father is homophobic as fuck but there’s an anti-discriminatory policy.” Baekhyun’s fingers playing with the towel around Yixing feel so good, but the cool air feels better on Yixing’s damp skin, helps to clear the metaphorical steam between them, his head.

He steps back, pointedly not watching the way Baekhyun’s hand hovers in the air in his absence, and the sad expression that quickly disappears behind a wall. Yixing clears his throat. “If he’s homophobic, he could still find a way to fire me.”

“He hasn’t fired me.”

Yixing offers his most withering look.

Baekhyun sighs. “He hasn't fired Kyungsoo or Jongdae.”

“We should wash the sweat off before our next activity,” Yixing murmurs instead of continuing this stream of conversation, already heading in the direction of the locker room and showers.

He hears another sigh behind him, but doesn't look back, only curses himself when the showers in here only have half partitions and Baekhyun enters the one next to him.

One look down gives Yixing an eyeful of half-erect cock and perfectly plump ass.

He doesn't miss Baekhyun’s smirk, but he still can't bring himself to look away as Baekhyun slowly washes himself, purposely running his perfect hands all over his body, bending over to wash his feet. Honestly, he’s fucking insufferable.

Yixing turns his back and finishes washing up that way, ignoring the appreciative hums that erupt from the other man at the new sight, and denying his help to wash him up.

~*~

Things take a rather hard turn by the time they make it to their last activity of the day: the massages.

As in, Yixing thinks he’s getting hard face down on the massage table but is too terrified of the massage therapist realizing to fully come to terms with it.

He squirms against the table and squeezes his eyes shut. He’s definitely getting hard. Fuck.

But it’s Baekhyun’s stupid fucking fault with his stupid fucking velvety voice that keeps humming these attractive moans that perfectly remind Yixing of the way he sounds when his mouth is wrapped around Yixing’s cock, of the way Yixing has had the best orgasms of his life, bound and blindfolded and in the hands of this glorified rich boy, on his stomach like this, with Baekhyun straddling his hips and his hands skillfully gliding across Yixing’s skin with chocolate scented massage oil. Yixing has to withhold a groan at the sense-memory, locked in a fucking flashback that feels all too real again, with someone else’s hands rubbing away all the knots under his skin.

Yixing lifts his head and opens his eyes and isn't the slightest bit surprised to find Baekhyun staring at him. Baekhyun licks his lips and Yixing lays his head back down. No, he thinks resolutely.

Except Baekhyun doesn't relent. He doesn't relent and the massage therapists start awkwardly coughing because Baekhyun is moaning wantonly and Yixing squirms every time he does. It’s not hard to put two and two together, he figures, but god he just wishes he had better control.

It dawns on him that Baekhyun planned this when the therapists practically flee the room to let them change back into their clothes, thanking Baekhyun-ssi for the generous tip and making sure it’s okay for them to clock out now, and Yixing catches a glimpse of his smug smirk. He doesn't know why it never occurred to him, or why he ever accepted this “friendly invitation” in the first place, why he let Baekhyun back into his life.

Yixing sighs inwardly. He knows why he accepted it. Baekhyun knows too. That’s why the bastard is so smug.

“Are you satisfied?” Yixing grumbles, pushing himself into a sitting position.

Baekhyun mirrors his position and bites his bottom lip, eyeing the tent of the towel around Yixing’s waist. Baekhyun has a matching one. “Well. Not quite.”

Something snaps in Yixing, then.

He’s across the floor and in Baekhyun’s face before either can truly process what’s happening. “You’re never going to stop, are you?” Yixing grits out between clenched teeth. His finger is pressed against Baekhyun’s chest.

Baekhyun actually looks a little shocked. “Do you want me to--?”

Yixing undoes Baekhyun’s towel and yanks him to the edge of the table by his knees. He speaks against the man’s lips, hot and a little angry. “You want me, right?”

“Isn’t that incredibly obvious at this p--”

“How much do you want me?”

A small whimper escapes Baekhyun’s throat and Yixing knows that Baekhyun knows exactly what he’s implying.

Yixing moves to wrap his hand around Baekhyun’s stupidly perfect cock, but waits for Baekhyun’s frantic nod before he actually does, drawing one of those beautiful moans from him. It’s been too long. Suddenly, Yixing wants to cry with some twisted form of relief.

“Say it, Baekhyun,” Yixing firmly demands. “Do you want me to fuck you?”

Baekhyun leans his head back, chest heaving with deep breaths and quiet groans. “Y-Yes. God yes, I do.”

“Say it,” Yixing growls. “Tell me.” He thumbs the head of Baekhyun’s dick slow.

“Oh--! Fuck m--I want you to fuck me, Yixing. First with your fingers, then your cock. M-Make me yours.”

Yixing’s panting a little as he reaches for the nearest bottle of natural oil he sees, immediately coating his fingers, and Baekhyun clumsily pulls Yixing’s towel away and lets it fall to the ground. He admires him unabashedly, but barely gets his pretty fingers around Yixing’s dick before Yixing is yanking his hand away by the wrist. “No,” is all he says, and slides a slick finger down until he’s massaging Baekhyun’s rim.

The man shudders and fully leans back on his hands for support as Yixing works his first finger in.

It’s slow, despite the urgency, the almost-anger he feels, but the part of his mind still thinking clearly pushes him to take it slow, reminds him that Baekhyun doesn’t get fucked often, or ever.

“When’s the last time you were fucked good and thoroughly, Baekhyun?” Yixing murmurs seductively against his lips when he’s fucking two fingers into him, scissoring them and watching Baekhyun fall apart.

“I d-don’t remember--ah--”

Yixing bites Baekhyun’s bottom lip, strokes his dick, and gently works his third finger in. “You’ll remember this,” he promises.

Yixing finds that little bundle of nerves inside Baekhyun--”Oh god, there!”--and milks it a few times, anxious to see Baekhyun squirm shamelessly in front of him, anxious to completely undo him.

Anxious.

Soon, Baekhyun is begging for Yixing’s cock, and Yixing lets him watch as he lathers himself up.

Then Yixing pulls him from the table, spins him around and bends him over it, a hand on the small of his back, holding him down, the other guiding his slicked up dick toward Baekhyun’s hole.

He pushes the head inside with little effort, and pauses to let the whimpering man adjust. Yixing runs a hand delicately down Baekhyun’s spine, making him shudder. Baekhyun urges him on.

This is the only other part Yixing wills to be slow. He eases and waits, eases and waits, until he’s been fully concealed inside Baekhyun for a moment, gritting his teeth at the warmth and tightness surrounding his dick, and Baekhyun just groans and says, “F-Fuck me, Yixing.”

So fuck him, Yixing does.

He’s builds up his pace, forcing every emotion into every thrust until he’s relentlessly pounding into Baekhyun’s ass, leaning over to nip harshly at the skin of Baekhyun’s neck and back, continuing to firmly hold him down.

“Such a fucking tease,” Yixing grunts. “Flaunting yourself in front of me all the fucking time like a f-fucking showgirl--” He thrusts particularly hard and Baekhyun shouts.

Guess they’re really not bothering to keep quiet.

The oil still coating their bodies from the massage is a little problematic; every now and then Yixing’s grip slips, but he also likes the way their bodies slide because of it, purposely glides his chest along Baekhyun’s back, or undulates his body onto it.

“Fuck I want you so bad--” Baekhyun chokes with surprise when Yixing firmly brings a hand down against his ass cheek, effectively cutting off his rambling.

“You shouldn't speak,” Yixing says, massaging the red mark left behind on Baekhyun’s ass. “You couldn't contain your fucking moans during the massage so don't contain them now, Baekhyun.” He threads his fingers through Baekhyun’s hair and yanks his head back, enough so that Yixing can easily whisper in his ear. “I want to hear them.”

A full-body shudder ripples through Baekhyun and he moans so loudly, so needily, but it takes Yixing longer than he should to realize Baekhyun has come, rutting against the table beneath him.

He bites the inside of his cheek and does his absolute best to stay in control, to not succumb to Baekhyun clenching around his dick, because Yixing’s not done with him yet.

His thrusts slow, but never stop, and Baekhyun’s moans are obscene as Yixing continues to fuck him through his unexpected orgasm.

“That was quick,” Yixing smirks into Baekhyun’s ear, grip on his hair tightening once again, because Baekhyun’s returning from his high and Yixing thinks he can make him come again.

Baekhyun pants and subtly starts meeting Yixing’s thrusts again. “You are full of surprises.”

Yixing lets him finish the whole sentence before spanking him this time.

Baekhyun moans as if he’s coming all over again. “I’ve-I’ve been waiting for you, Yixing--oh--!” Another slap. But Baekhyun doesn't stop. “B-Been waiting for you. To come--” Another. “Y-Yes--”

He likes it, then.

Yixing observes the bright red blooming across Baekhyun’s ass cheek with satisfaction; he massages it again, knowing it contrasts nicely with the sharp thrusts of his hips, and the vice grip in Baekhyun’s hair.

He laughs a little. “Like I’m going to believe that, Byun Baekhyun.” They haven't fucked in over a month. He knows Baekhyun hasn't held out just for him.

“‘S’true--oh--only want--you--”

Yixing can tell he’s waiting for another harsh slap, so he doesn't give it to him; he pulls him by the hair until he’s standing up instead.

The mess of come on the massage table very nearly undoes Yixing. The thought of Baekhyun sliding through it, spreading it around with his stomach--

“Does your waist hurt?” Baekhyun asks breathlessly, but there’s something so gentle about it that pangs Yixing’s stomach unexpectedly.

Baekhyun’s hair is completely soaked through with sweat and oil, but Yixing still likes it between his fingers, combs through it where the younger’s head lay on his shoulder. They’re pressed together, naked and connected, and Yixing doesn't like the intimate levels they’re suddenly reaching. “What?” he asks belatedly.

“Your waist,” Baekhyun pants. “Is it--”

“N-No.”

Yixing abruptly moves their bodies toward the wall a few feet away, pressing Baekhyun into it and setting another relentless pace.

He doesn’t know why his brain starts up a montage of memories of them together, but that’s exactly what it does. All the late nights, the movie marathons, the experimenting, coffee cup drawings, the soft kisses in the morning that always meant so much more than they should have.

Yixing dedicates thrusts to the particularly vivid memories, still tugging Baekhyun’s head back by the hair as the man moans unstoppingly, Yixing’s name slipping from his soft lips occasionally as Yixing drops wet kisses all over his skin, sucks marks onto his neck and shoulder, fucks into him like his life depends on it.

“What do you do then, Baekhyun?” Yixing grunts into his ear, the question belated but meant as a distraction for himself; he’s close but he wants Baekhyun to come again first. His voice falls to a whisper. “Do you think of me while you touch yourself and deny yourself release?” He wraps his free hand around Baekhyun’s half-hard cock, reveling in the mewl it draws from him. “Or have you just been walking around untouched all this time?”

Baekhyun whimpers. He can't even open his eyes against the force of his pleasure, it seems. “U-Unt-ouched, Xing, untouched.”

Yixing’s hips stutter ominously. Fuck. Yixing thinks he might actually believe him, and the thought… He nearly snarls, “How. Have you. Managed.”

“Told you. Want you. Also--h-hobbies--”

Hiding his amused grin behind a bite to Baekhyun’s neck, Yixing firmly strokes Baekhyun’s cock, feeling it harden in his hand, Baekhyun’s increasing volume starting to drown out the slapping of their skin.

“Yes, hyung, yes--”

A sharp tug to the hair and a few more skillful strokes does it for Baekhyun. He’s boneless, would collapse if he wasn't wedged between the wall and another body. Weak spurts of come drip down Yixing’s hand as he coaxes Baekhyun’s cock through release.

And the way Baekhyun clenches around Yixing’s length is too good this time; it milks him, pulls his release from him slowly, powerfully. He moans obscenely into Baekhyun’s ear and feels him shudder against him, Yixing’s hips shallowly stuttering in and out until he has nothing left.

They still for a moment. Yixing is a dead weight pressing Baekhyun into the wall, the only sign that he’s even still conscious his hand gently stroking Baekhyun’s hair, and the bleary way he blinks at Baekhyun’s mouth as he softly pants against it.

The angle is too awkward for kissing, and Yixing’s not even certain the occasion calls for it.

Whatever this occasion is.

Baekhyun reaches up and softly grazes the back of his knuckles along Yixing’s cheek, a terribly intimate gesture, and it startles him from his haze.

He straightens up and smooths a hand down Baekhyun’s back as he carefully pulls out of him. “Are you okay?” he asks softly, a hint of shame sinking into his bones. He shouldn't have lost it like that, and now if anyone is in the general vicinity, they will know that they’re… something.

They’re something.

“What?” Baekhyun spins and presses his back against the wall. “Of course I’m okay! More than okay.” His eyes sparkle and hands fall automatically to Yixing’s hips. “Y--”

Yixing shies away from his grip, from the soft look on his face, from everything. “I’m sorry.”

“Why are you apologizing? I practically begged you--” Yixing busies himself with grabbing his towel from the floor, cleaning himself up. “I’m not fragile, Xing--” A huff of frustration.

Yixing ignores it. He has to. He starts cleaning Baekhyun, avoiding eye contact at all costs.

“Zhang Yixing.”

His hands falter in their robotic movements, but he says nothing. Just like they still have said nothing about their relationship together, nothing important, nothing that they desperately need to say, to talk through, but Yixing needs a clear head, a genuinely clear head--

“Look at me.”

“I can’t,” he whispers. He can’t.

“Why the fuck not?”

Because it’s too much. Having Baekhyun this way again--no, this way--just… opened the fucking floodgates of Yixing’s feelings and the weight of it is crushing him. Nothing has changed; Baekhyun is still his boss of the company that has zero tolerance for employee relationships, but if Yixing so much as looks at Baekhyun’s face, he knows he’ll cave. He can't see one of those soft expressions, or playful ones, or angry ones. It would just be too much.

He doesn't answer. He holds the towel against the younger’s chest until he slowly grabs it, clenches his fists in it. Yixing leaves him there and finds his gym clothes neatly folded next to Baekhyun’s on a table.

His movements are mechanic, but quick, as he slips back into them, carefully keeping his back to the other man. Baekhyun hasn't moved from the wall.

“Yixing,” he tries, and the pitiful sound of his voice twists Yixing’s stomach in the most unpleasant way.

He ties his sweatpants. “W-We just--we can’t…”

“God, I’m so sick of hearing that. We can, Yixing. If you would stop running away from me for one minute and let me talk to you. Let me explain--”

Yixing is already shaking his head. “There’s no way to fix this. I--I have to go now.”

Before he can stop himself, he’s slipping through the door and closing it behind him. Leaving a naked Baekhyun behind, alone.

And also, probably, his heart.

~*~

There’s no coffee on his desk the next day.

Baekhyun cancels his personal training appointments. All of them.

Yixing thinks he might leave work early.

He feels ill.

Chapter Text

Kyungsoo plops into the barstool next to Yixing at eight o’clock on the dot, but turns sharply to face him, eyes wide with a fire Yixing’s never seen directed at himself before. Anger. He shrinks before Kyungsoo even speaks, despite not knowing what this is about.

“What did you say to Baekhyun?”

Yixing blinks, straw to his obnoxiously fruity drink hanging from his mouth. He takes it out. “What are you talking about?”

I’m sorry. I’m sorry I left you there. There’s so much we need to talk about, really talk about, but I think for now we both need some time and space. I’m sorry.

That’s all he’s said to Baekhyun since… since then, and it was only through text.

“Baekhyun. You must've said something to him.” Yixing opens his mouth to deny the random accusation but is cut off. “Look, I’m sure you were just being nice and trying to fix us or whatever, but I don't want anything to do with him--”

“Kyungsoo-yah.” Yixing furrows his brows. “I didn't say anything to him. We haven't spoken in a few weeks and even then…” Yixing glances away, gulps down the sickening strawberry sugar glorified-juice and orders a whiskey. “You didn't come up last time I saw him.” He stares at his hand on the dark wooden bar, curls his fingers when he feels sweaty hair between them.

Kyungsoo at least looks concerned now, rather than angry. Yixing doesn't want Kyungsoo to be angry at him. He wouldn't be able to take it right now. Kyungsoo orders another glass of whiskey for himself and leans closer. “What’s wrong?”

“We were talking about you,” Yixing murmurs, shaking his head and curling his fingers around his new glass instead. He wishes he would choke on the burn, like he had at sixteen when his mother had knowingly allowed him a sip. “What made you so accusatory?”

Kyungsoo slowly sips from his glass and the anger burns in his eyes now, but it's no longer directed at Yixing. “He apologized.”

“What?”

“Baekhyun. Apologized to me. For back when…”

“Oh.”

“I’m sorry. Does this bother you? We can talk about something else.”

Yixing rips his eyes from the rippling brown sea in the bottom of his glass. He drinks it. Shakes his head. “What did he say?”

But Kyungsoo watches him, like he knows that Yixing isn't handling this as well as he should be, that he’s still way too affected by Baekhyun, and he says, “Nothing really. He just apologized for being a jerk.”

It’s a lie, but Yixing accepts it and moves on. “Well that’s good. You gonna be buddies now?”

Kyungsoo rolls his eyes and orders them another round. “No.”

Yixing hums and nods in thanks as another glass is set in front of him. He can feel the alcohol thrumming through him already. Probably courtesy to those three cocktails he had before Kyungsoo arrived.

“So what’s bothering you?” Kyungsoo asks.

“Don't know.”

“You… don't know?”

“Nope.” Maybe if Yixing chugs the glass he’ll really feel the burn.

He doesn't.

“Yixing—“

“How are you and Chanyeollie doing anyway?

Kyungsoo sighs. “There's nothing to tell.”

“Really? Don’t lie to me.” Yixing giggles and flags down the bartender for a rum and cola. “‘Cause every time I ask him he gets all flustered and blushes. You’ve both been… happier. When did you guys finally buck up n’ stop pining?”

Kyungsoo sighs again, mumbling something about dating a child. “A month… or so ago. He… He may or may not be looking for another job.”

“Wah, really!? That’s… He makes so much at SM.”

“I know.” Kyungsoo’s eyes widen a little. “He swears he’s saved enough to get him through a couple years of school with scholarship help too but I just… feel bad.”

Yixing hums, swaying a bit in his seat. The lines in the wood on the bar start to blend together, so he knocks back his glass so it doesn’t make him too dizzy. “I get that, but! If it’s his decision, then—“ he hiccups. “It’s’is decision, y’know—“

Kyungsoo’s eyes widen again, and a hand rests on Yixing’s arm. He tries to shrug it off, he thinks, but it doesn’t seem to work. “How much have you had to drink, Yixing?”

With a shrug, Yixing finishes off his glass. God he hates rum and cola. Why did he order that? “Few cocktails, few whiskeys~” Another hiccup. “Now this gross drink.”

“Rum and cola.” Kyungsoo hums. His hand is so warm. Yixing leans into his space. “That was Baekhyun’s favorite drink in uni.”

“Tha’s right,” Yixing slurs, remembering. “He likes sneakin’ a cup when hethinks no one’s watching. At his parties. Wants to stay—classy.”

Kyungsoo’s voice is softer when he asks, “What’s going on, Yixing?”

“Messed up.”

“You did? Or he did?”

“Yep.”

Kyungsoo sighs. “Come on. Let’s get you home.”

“Don’t wanna—go home. Don’t wanna be by m’self.” Yixing whimpers, but he lets Kyungsoo pull him to his feet and into his side anyway, stumbling as he goes.

The ride in Kyungsoo’s car passes in a blur, much in the way downtown Seoul does through the passenger side window, the speeding lights and blobs of people making Yixing feel nauseous enough to squeeze his eyes shut.

He startles when hands wrap around his arms to pull him out of the car, unaware they had even stopped. “Did I fall’sleep?” he mumbles.

“Yeah, Xing, you did.”

He loses time again, getting into the apartment, and a voice in the back of his head insists he owes Kyungsoo big time for this. (And also that he’s lucky Kyungsoo works out.)

He’s thanking Kyungsoo, maybe too loudly, as he’s deposited on the couch, and he sloppily wraps his arms around Kyungsoo’s neck. “Thanks, thanks. Kyung~ Soo~”

“Soo?” a deep voice mumbles from somewhere behind Yixing, who startles and whips around to look.

But it takes a second for his dizziness to die down, and then he sees a distinctly tall and shirtless figure easing his way into the room.

“What’re you doin’ in my apart-apartment, Chanyeollie?”

Chanyeol frowns, eyes sliding over to Kyungsoo still bent over Yixing, trying to get him to lay down, maybe. “Go back to bed, Yeol,” he murmurs.

The words make Yixing blink at his surroundings, realization sinking in that he’s never seen this apartment before, and it’s at least three times the size of his own. “Oh. This isn’t my apartment.”

“I’ll get him some water,” Chanyeol murmurs, instead of following Kyungsoo’s suggestion. “Do we have any bread?”

”Yeah, somewhere in the pantry.” Yixing isn’t drunk enough to miss the way Kyungsoo smiles so bashfully, and Yixing thinks it’s because Chanyeol said we. That would make Yixing smile too.

Yixing pokes Kyungsoo’s cheek. “You like ‘im a lot.”

“Hush.” Kyungsoo frowns, but the expression doesn’t stick, curling upward at the edges as he rearranges Yixing’s limbs. “Why are you fighting so much? Just lay down.”

“Hm?” Yixing blinks, hazy, at Kyungsoo, then down at where his hands are on his arm and chest. “Oh, is that wha’ you’re doin?” Yixing relaxes into the couch. It’s comfy, anyway.

“What did you think I was doing,” Kyungsoo mutters. Yixing pokes his cheek again and giggles as Chanyeol reappears.

He sets a glass of water on the coffee table and kneels on the ground by Yixing’s head while Kyungsoo eases the shoes from his feet. “Hyung.” A deep sigh resonates in Chanyeol’s chest. “Hyung, you said you were never going to get shitfaced again after last time.”

Yixing shrugs, sighing dramatically—hand on his forehead and everything. “I’m s-soberer than you, Yeollie. Rollie Pollie. Heh heh.”

Eyebrows pinched, Chanyeol pets his hair. “Just don’t dial Baekhyun hyung again, yeah? Especially… especially not now. It’ll just make you both sad.”

In what feels like a flash, his hand is held out, because Yixing has pulled his phone from his pocket, but Yixing thinks calling Baekhyun is a great idea so that’s exactly what he’s going to do! Chanyeol, a genius. “Jus’ wanna check somethin’,” Yixing mumbles deceivingly. Ha! What a good faker.

“Who is he calling?” Kyungsoo asks a little urgently, walking into the room. Huh, when did he leave?

“He said he was just checking something—“

Yixing’s mouth splits into a wide grin when the other line clicks, but it immediately morphs into a frown when a too-soft voice says, “Hello?”

Broken, this is a broken voice. This isn’t the loud, boisterous voice that takes over an entire room with no effort. Broken, Baekhyun is broken, and so is Yixing.

“Why did you—“ he slurs. He’s so fucking drunk, holy fuck. “Why didyou have t’be so fuckin—perfect for me, you-you asshole.”

“Shit.” Kyungsoo launches across the room, but Yixing curls up facing the couch, putting the phone between his head and the cushions, unreachable by either of his friends without wrenching him from the couch.

He blinks through the dizziness and breathes shakily into the receiver. “I w-was so sure I wanted t’be like Luhan. Nev’r fully commit to-to one guy but then you.”

“Are you done?” Baekhyun’s voice shakes, and if Yixing were even the slightest bit sober, he might think Baekhyun was crying.

”No I’m not done!”

“Yes you are. Yixing hang up the phone, holy shit.”

“Is that… Is that Kyungsoo?”

Yixing huffs. “Yes it’s Kyungsoo—don’t be jealous.”

“I’m not fucking jealous—“

“Oh my god Yixing, please hang up the phone—“

Silence falls over them all, as if waiting for Yixing’s next move. He blinks, though all he sees is darkness pressed against the soft couch like this. “I miss you,” he whispers, and his voice breaks. “I miss—spendin’ every night with you. Sleepin’ in your sweaters. Kissin’ you all-all fucking day. Getting ready together every morning. Those… Those things I-I miss most, Hyunnie. I miss you so m-much—“ Yixing hiccups, eyelids fluttering around his increasingly wet eyes. “Why didyou have to be y-you?”

A sniffle reaches Yixing’s ear, then Baekhyun’s shaky voice says, “I-I can’t do this. Please don’t call me again. Unless—“

“U-Unless?”

The call ends, Yixing’s phone beeping at him to let him know. “Okay,” he whispers. His trembling hand holds his phone up until someone takes it from him and he curls in on himself, making himself as small as humanly possible, holding himself together.

Hands are on him quickly, turning into gangly arms wrapping around him as best they can, a cheek resting on his shoulder. “I’m sorry,” Chanyeol mutters, rough, as if he might be crying too. Yixing doesn’t dare look. “I should’ve kept my big mouth shut I’m so sorry.”

“Not your fault,” Yixing whispers. “I want to sleep.”

“Drink some water first, okay?” Kyungsoo murmurs. An extra hand lands in his hair, stroking it. “Chanyeollie made you toast, too.”

Yixing quietly obeys, aware enough now at least to know he should do what they tell him, that he already owes them too much for taking care of him like this. He keeps his eyes squeezed shut to fend off the spinning room and Chanyeol keeps a comforting hand on him the entire time, even as he quietly converses with Kyungsoo.

“He told me they weren’t serious. Weren’t together. But that sounded…”

“They didn’t really acknowledge it until it was already over, according to Yixing,” Kyungsoo murmurs.

“I hate seeing them like this.”

“Me too.” A beat. “Sorry our plans are kind of shot to hell. He said he didn’t want to be alone and I just…”

“S’okay,” Chanyeol mumbles. “He’s my friend, too.” Yixing hears the smack of a kiss and is almost tempted to open his eyes. “I’m going to stay in here with him, I think. He—He was there for me when… you know.”

“What are you going to do? Sleep on the floor?”

“If I have to.”

Kyungsoo sighs and Yixing hears another kiss. “Let’s just carry him to my bed. It’s big enough.”

Yixing doesn’t have the energy to protest.

He’s changed into unfamiliar clothes and deposited into a not-quite-as-comfy-bed as Baekhyun’s, on the side, careless to the way Chanyeol crawls in behind him and holds him tight as the bed shifts again, presumably as Kyungsoo climbs in too.

~*~

“I think…” Jongdae slows his hand where it’s wiping down the handles on the dip station, as if choosing his words carefully. They’ve been working in relative silence in the gym for a while now, Jongdae having offered to help Yixing clean, since Jongin had a doctor's appointment and Yixing’s last session was late. “I think you were right and that real time apart is something you both need.”

Yixing focuses on the dumbbells he’s sanitizing a little too intensely. Jongdae had heard about Yixing’s drunken fuck-up from two sides, both Kyungsoo and Junmyeon. Kyungsoo shared because he’s worried, but apparently Junmyeon had been with Baekhyun when it happened and heard the whole thing. It’s enough to completely mortify Yixing but he knows he deserves it. He can’t completely remember that night or the things he said but he got the details out of Kyungsoo and Chanyeol the next morning, so he has enough to go on to know he fucked up, on top of his previous fuck up.

He deleted Baekhyun’s number to ensure it doesn’t happen again.

“Yeah,” is all he belatedly offers to Jongdae’s statement.

“Yixing,” Jongdae sighs. “Both of you are so far from being okay. I just—want you both to be okay.” Yixing nods numbly. “I’m not trying to say ‘get over it’ but…”

“Get over it,” Yixing finishes. “I know. I need to.”

“Ah~ Xing, it sounds so mean. I just mean—“

“It’s okay. You’re right.”

Jongdae doesn’t look so sure.

~*~

It probably takes a month, if Yixing had to put a timestamp on it.

Not to say he mopes and struggles for an entire month with no reprieve, and also not to say that he’s magically over Baekhyun in just a month; each notion is a little ridiculous after everything.

But it’s roughly a month after his conversation with Jongdae that he realizes he no longer feels like someone has died, or like he lost a limb. He can breathe again, some form of happy, some semblance of a clear head again, even when he’s tucked between Sehun and Jongin in a new LGBT+ friendly club, sweating it out on the dancefloor with just the right amount of alcohol coursing through his veins to give him a pleasant buzz.

He’s engulfed in the sheer height of his friends and he loves it, neon lights bouncing off of their skin, bass rumbling through their chests, and Yixing doesn’t protest when Sehun attaches his lips to one side of his neck, and Jongin the other. It’s unexpected, sure, but he doesn’t stop himself from moaning into Sehun’s neck, or pressing back against Jongin’s hard crotch, letting him rut against Yixing’s ass slowly and unabashedly while Yixing writhes between them.

“Calm down, hyung,” Sehun murmurs directly into his ear, nipping at it right after. “I saw Baekhyun hyung walk in. We’re hiding you.”

Yixing swallows nervously, biting his lips as he tucks his face a little more securely in Sehun’s neck, but he forces himself to focus on the way Sehun and Jongin feel around him, on the way that despite this being a disguise of sorts, all three of them are hard and maybe they could do something about that.

The heat overcomes them, he thinks, the arousal too high, the lights too blinding, because the moment Sehun sees Baekhyun enter the restroom across the club, he’s dragging Yixing and Jongin from the place, Jongin by the hand and Yixing by the shoulders, holding him close enough that he’s tucked into Sehun’s side and still half-hidden.

And then they’re in the back of a cab, Yixing in the middle with Sehun’s tongue down his throat, panting heavily as they scramble to kiss each other harder.

And Yixing only takes a moment to notice how less confident Jongin is outside the security of of the club, his usual shyness peeking through, but he’s still hard in his jeans and his hand is on Yixing’s thigh so Yixing lurches forward and kisses him, too.

Yixing doesn’t fully register that maybe he had more to drink than he realized until the three of them are buck-naked and panting, sated in Sehun’s bed much, much later, because he can’t afford to be this stupid, to blatantly dry hump two of his co-workers in public and then fuck them both like his life depends on it.

Because what was the point in breaking up with Baekhyun if Yixing keeps doing shit like this?

“That was—“ Jongin pants at the same time Yixing says, “Can we keep this between us?”

They both turn to look at him, but there are two different reactions facing him, Sehun’s knowing, and Jongin’s some form of disbelief. “It’s not like we’re going to go spreading it around, hyung,” he says, frowning.

Yixing snorts. “You’ve met Sehun, haven’t you?”

Sehun reaches over Jongin to slap at Yixing’s chest. “I resent that, hyung!” Jongin catches his hand as he draws back and laces their fingers together. Hm. That’s a… development. “I kept our thing a secret from Minseok hyung! You’re the one who spilled.”

“He already knew!” Yixing exclaims for the hundredth time.

“You guys had a thing?” Jongin asks uncertainly, and Yixing and Sehun’s eyes widen, but after one long, suspenseful moment, Jongin breaks into a grin. “Just kidding. Got you to shut up though, didn’t it?”

Yixing laughs, deflating into the bed and scooting a little closer to Jongin, enough to feel the heat of his body.

His eyes fall closed and silence stretches between them so long Yixing thinks they’ve fallen asleep, but then Sehun softly says, “Everyone keeps proving to you over and over again that dating within the company is possible, hyung. Minseok hyung, Chanyeol, us…” Yixing opens his eyes to see Sehun snuggled into an asleep Jongin’s neck, staring at Yixing. “A couple of weeks, before you ask. I asked him out a couple of weeks ago and he said yes.” Yixing swallows, hand reaching over to cup Sehun’s cheek. No one thinks they can tell Yixing anything about their relationships for fear of upsetting him, and there’s just so much wrong with that. “Anyway,” Sehun murmurs. “I think that’s worth thinking about.”

“Chanyeol is trying to leave the company.”

That’s what any and all comparisons come down to anyway. The receptionist and the COO of the company. If they think one of them needs to leave so they can be together, that’s exactly how Yixing and Baekhyun would need to look at it, but Baekhyun is the next CEO and Yixing won’t get paid enough anywhere else to accomplish his goals. He already has enough for a downpayment on a potential studio, maybe even enough to do basic renovations; he’s even gone to look at potential locations over the past couple of weeks, but he’ll still need the steady flow of his SM paycheck at least until his studio opens, if not after that as well.

It’s just not plausible, but…

“That’s his decision, hyung, not yours. Maybe you should reconsider your options.”

Maybe Yixing should.

~*~

The summer rain pounds on the windows and walls of Yixing’s apartment—it’s so dark outside he has to turn on a lamp in broad daylight—when he receives a text from Jongdae with nothing but a link.

> yixing: Is this spam? lol
> jongdae: just open it, hyung

Frowning, Yixing actually pays attention to what he can see of the link; it’s for one of the local news stations, and the subject mentions SM, but that’s all he can gather. His thumb hovers over the link nervously. What is he about to open? Is the company going bankrupt? Is Yixing about to lose his job?

SM Inc. Loses Soon-to-Be CEO
Family Heir Steps Down From Father’s Company

Yixing swallows around his sudden cottonmouth, heart stuttering.

He’s too shaky, too impatient to read the article thoroughly, but he gets the gist of it all.

Rumors began circulating around Byun Baekhyun Jr.’s departure from the company just yesterday…

Byun Jr. held a press conference this morning announcing his decision to step down from under his father’s shadow...

...rumored now that Chief Operations Officer Do Kyungsoo will take his place.

There’s a link to video footage of Baekhyun’s press conference, but Yixing can’t hear anything he’s saying through the rushing in his ears. His attention focuses on how dapper and professional Baekhyun looks, with his suit, and his dark brown hair—when did he dye it brown?—slicked to the side, but also with dark circles under his eyes that are too deep, too dark for his trusty concealer to fully cover them.

All that’s important for Yixing to know is that this is real. Baekhyun no longer works for his father, at the same company Yixing does. Anything else… Anything else he’d rather hear directly from Baekhyun.

If Baekhyun will even talk to him.

Yixing sits on it, ponders until the sky grows even darker and the rain pounds harder, but no matter which path his thoughts lead him, he always ends up at the same result.

He grabs a jacket, his car keys—driving in this weather is going to be nightmarish, but he has to get to Baekhyun, he has to—

Yixing freezes when he pulls his front door open, faced with a wary, wide-eyed Baekhyun, fist hovering in the air as if he was about to knock. He’s soaked to the bone from the rain, dark hair sticking to his forehead, t-shirt and sweats to his skin. Yixing can't help but think how good the hair looks on him.

Moments pass, Yixing has no idea how many, as they stare at each other in surprise.

Baekhyun breaks the silence first. “I left SM.”

Slowly, Yixing nods. “I know.”

“Y-You know?” Baekhyun looks crestfallen. “Th-This was a bad idea, I’m gonna—”

Yixing reaches out to grasp Baekhyun’s shirt, holding him in place as he shakes his head. “I was just on my way. To find you. I… I only just found out Baekhyun—”

Baekhyun scrutinizes him, eyes scanning Yixing’s face thoroughly, over and over again. Unsure, but hopeful, maybe.

Yixing thinks he can relate to that.

He glances behind him, at his own living room. “We should talk.”

A weak, humorless laugh escapes Baekhyun then. “Suddenly having flashbacks to our pseudo breakup but. Okay. Yeah. We should.” His hand fleetingly grazes Yixing’s before it falls from his shirt.

Yixing nods and steps aside, swallowing thickly and gently shutting the door once Baekhyun is inside and slipping off his shoes. Making a sudden noise of concern, Yixing mutters, “Hold on,” and darts off to his bedroom, grabbing a towel from the bathroom and a change of clothes from his drawers. “Here,” he says softly, handing everything to Baekhyun as if it’s some kind of peace offering. Maybe it is. “The bathroom’s—”

“I know,” Baekhyun whispers, gaze falling to the floor. “I was here when you were hurt, remember?”

“Oh.” Yixing swallows. “Right. Yeah.”

Yixing watches Baekhyun slip into the bedroom before pulling a blanket from the chest behind the couch, and setting water to boil on the stove. The rain is even louder now, though that didn’t seem possible five minutes ago, and thunder rumbles in the distance. He just hopes it’s not an omen.

A few minutes later, they’re sitting on the couch, an awkward amount of space between them,too much space between them. Yixing watches Baekhyun’s hands clench into fists inside the pocket of the hoodie he’s wearing. He must have pulled it from Yixing’s closet.

“Baekhyun—”

“I didn't do it for you,” Baekhyun says to the coffee table. Then an anxious hand is out and rubbing down his face. “But maybe I did it this soon because of you. I don't know.”

“Did you want to leave?”

“Yeah.”

“Then it was for yourself.”

Baekhyun turns to him then, eyes wide and maybe a little worried. “But it was for you, too—”

Reaching out, Yixing stops him by placing his hand over Baekhyun’s on the couch. “I’m not accusing you, Baekhyun. I want you to be happy, over everything else.”

“But you make me happy most of all.” Baekhyun’s looking away again, and now he’s angry, lost, as if he doesn't want Yixing to bring him happiness. Or maybe he just doesn't know what he wants.

Yixing pulls his hand away. “You say it as if it’s the worst thing to ever happen to you.”

“It is. It isn’t.” Baekhyun stares now at the couch where their hands had been. “I never meant to fall for you.”

“I didn't realize it was a choice.”

“Isn’t it?” Baekhyun’s eyes glisten with unshed tears as they meet Yixing’s finally. “I knew better. The more I let you into my bed, the more I realized there was no turning back. If I had stopped, if I had just forgotten about you—”

“Then you would never know.”

Staring at the carpet, Baekhyun touches his own lips. “I would never know.” After a beat, he quietly adds, “I couldn't forget about you.” He traces his own lips with his index finger. “After that first night, I couldn't stop thinking about you. I fucking—“ Baekhyun laughs, though there’s still not much genuine humor behind it. “I jerked off at my desk one day because I got so worked up over your mouth. Your lips. How they feel on my skin.”

Yixing’s mouth goes dry, not too proud to admit the thought of CEO-in-training Baekhyun getting off to thoughts of Yixing at work is hot, satisfying, but now's not the time. He’s not even sure why Baekhyun is bringing it up.

Baekhyun shivers and the kettle on the stove whistles. Yixing gets up to wrap the blanket around Baekhyun’s shoulders and go fix the tea in his small kitchen while Baekhyun continues. “I had no idea I wouldn't be able to let you go. I had no idea, then, that it could get even better somehow. Every time I saw you, it only got better, and I didn't get why until it was too late.”

“Baekhyun—”

“I don’t do relationships,” Baekhyun says with a furrowed brow as Yixing comes back with a cup of hot water, sticking a tea bag in as he goes. “I don’t. But you…” Baekhyun scrunches up his nose in a way that would be cute if he wasn't doing it to keep himself from crying. He shakes his head. “You came along with your pretty smile and dimple and charming as fuck personality and all I found myself wanting to do after a while was sleep next to you. Just… spend time with you.”

Yixing feels his face heat up and he smiles gently, letting the confession settle comfortably around them before prodding, gently asking, “Why don’t you do relationships?” He reaches over to brush a stray chunk of drying hair from Baekhyun’s forehead.

The man leans into the touch and sighs. “Because how do you know it’s real? How do you know everything is okay?”

“I think communication is key,” Yixing answers immediately. Something they never really practiced, clearly. “Communication, and establishing trust.”

“But how do you know?” Baekhyun bites his lip. “My parents were—as a kid, I thought they were the happiest couple. I thought they loved each other more than anything or anyone else, even more than me. And so did my mother.”

Yixing’s eyes fall shut for a short moment. He thinks he understands already, but he also thinks it’s important for Baekhyun to get this out. So Yixing sits there patiently and starts stroking Baekhyun’s hair, aiming for comfort. Baekhyun doesn’t seem to mind.

“He’s not a great person. You know that.” Baekhyun sighs, sipping his tea.

“He hasn’t been bad to me.”

Baekhyun suddenly looks nervous. “Right. Well. I may have… swayed him a couple of times in your favor. Like asshat Mr. Li when he tried to have you fired. He’s important within the company, you know. He actually could’ve had your job, but…”

“But you…” Yixing’s fingers slow their brushing through Baekhyun’s hair.

“Yeah, me. I… I didn’t do much. I just happened to be present and—did some convincing in your favor… I also got your trip home approved? He wasn’t going to let you go.”

Baekhyun uneasily meets Yixing’s gaze, obviously nervous for his reaction, but all Yixing feels is… fondness. He smiles minutely and brings his hand down to Baekhyun’s face, thumb stroking his cheek. “You’ve been saving my job all along, haven’t you?” I would’ve done anything for you. To save your job. He feels Baekhyun’s breath stutter and murmurs, “Thank you, Baekhyun.” Baekhyun’s eyes fall shut before he kisses Yixing’s palm, and Yixing resumes petting his hair. “What happened with your mother?”

Baekhyun hesitates, biting his bottom lip.

“You don’t have to tell me, Baekhyun, if you don’t want to. It’s okay.”

But Baekhyun shakes his head. “No, I… I want to tell you. I want to explain everything that makes me the way I am today. And if-if you still want m--to talk to me after all of that, then…” Yixing swallows, and Baekhyun takes a deep breath. “...My father cheated on my mom, with multiple women.” He sighs. “This already sounds so cliche, right? Modeling my view of love and relationships after my parents?”

“No? Even if it did, how it sounds doesn’t matter, Baekhyun. Your reservations matter.”

He shoots a grateful smile at Yixing and continues, setting his mug of tea on the coffee table. “I guess it’s not so cut and dry as he cheated on her, but that was the big fall-out, you know? They seemed so happy and perfect before, Xing. I mean. I can still picture how they looked at each other.” Baekhyun shakes his head. “And then it all just kind of went to shit. My father started forcing business tactics on me and telling me I’d take over SM once he retired. Scolded me harshly if I mentioned wanting to study music. I was like, thirteen.” He laughs bitterly then.

The knots in Yixing’s stomach tighten at the sound and he frowns. “I didn’t know you wanted to study music,” he murmurs.

And the way Baekhyun blinks rapidly at his hands in his lap nearly has Yixing regretting saying it, the words bringing Baekhyun on the verge of tears, it seems. “Piano. That was my—god, I haven’t touched a piano in so long.”

Yixing carefully takes one of Baekhyun’s hands in his free one, running his thumb along his knuckles, lacing their fingers as he pictures Baekhyun’s pressing into the ivories of a classic piano. Sitting next to him as they play together, build a song together. Baekhyun’s hands are perfect for it. “Maybe you should change that.” Yixing doesn’t mention the keyboard in his room. Not yet.

Baekhyun’s eyes don’t stray from their entwined hands. It’s all to comfort him, Yixing assures himself over and over. Baekhyun barely nods. “Yeah, maybe I should.”

They sit in companionable silence for a moment, Yixing doing everything he can to subtly soothe Baekhyun, to get him through this talk.

“When my parents split…” Baekhyun eventually continues. “I got lucky, and landed in my mom’s custody. She didn’t want me to end up at SM. She wanted me to do what I wanted. To pursue music. To be happy.” Yixing watches him inhale deeply. “I hardly saw my father for a few years, and I was happy. But then… my mother passed away unexpectedly.”

Yixing makes a sad noise in his throat, eyebrows furrowing as Baekhyun’s expression crumbles.

“I-I had to grow up right away when I was sixteen. My father couldn’t have planned it better himself honestly. He immediately shipped me off to private school and started sending tutors to teach me the family trade, to train me to prepare to shadow him and one day take over the company in his place.”

“Why didn’t you just…”

“Refuse? Leave?” Baekhyun nods, hand squeezing Yixing’s. “I considered the hell out of it. Agonized over it. But I… I wanted to go to college, y’know? I wanted that experience even if it was at a prestigious private university where I was studying business instead of music. If I had broken away from him I wouldn’t have been able to afford anything on my own so it would have been kind of pointless, right? So I stuck it out. My father hired both me and Kyungsoo right out of college and it became clear really quickly that it wasn’t for me. I love advertising, to be honest, but I’d rather be getting my hands dirty and creating than sitting in an office and managing everything. I’m no good at it anyway. I can’t sit still long enough.”

That’s easy enough to imagine.

Baekhyun swallows. “I know… I know I fucked up with Kyungsoo a long time ago. I’m sure he told you. I know he hated me and I know him having piles and piles of my work on top of his own workload was shitty, to say the least, but I wanted my father to see that Kyungsoo could handle it. He always liked Kyungsoo, even after he found out Kyungsoo likes men, but I know him, and he would’ve thought jumping from COO to CEO was ridiculous. But Kyungsoo would make a great CEO, and Jongdae would make a great COO. The company will be in great hands if my father takes my suggestions seriously.”

Yixing drops the hand in Baekhyun’s hair to play with Baekhyun’s fingers instead. “Was he angry when you…?”

“Oh yeah.” Baekhyun smiles weakly. “He was that kind of quiet, super dangerous anger. I thought he was going to kill me. Of course the first thing he threatened was to cut me off.” Baekhyun rolls his eyes. “But I’ve been prepared for that since the moment I had access to his money.” At Yixing’s questioning look, he continues, “Once I graduated college, I started taking out money monthly. He’s never questioned why, but with the kind of rich we—he is, you expect to see that much being spent. I also had an allowance of sorts, to pay for the penthouse and maid services. And, well. I obviously don’t have a maid, so I saved that money too. Put it all in a private bank account. Now I’ve sold the penthouse out from under his nose and a couple of the properties I own—not… not all of them—“ He clears his throat.

The potential dance studio. Yixing had nearly cried when he actually visited the location a couple of weeks ago. It’s almost too perfect, and he lost it.

“Sold some of my belongings, too. Not that I had a whole lot, really, but I only kept what’s important and I just got done moving it into a storage unit until I find a new place.”

“Wow,” Yixing murmurs. “This is all so—and he had no idea?”

“That I was leaving? No. And that’s… look.”

Baekhyun turns to fully face him on the couch, sighing and crossing his legs so that he’s placed more comfortably. He takes both of Yixing’s hands in his as Yixing moves to sit the same way, suddenly nervous.

“I’m sorry,” Baekhyun says, sincere as ever and looking straight into Yixing’s eyes. “I never… I never meant to hurt you the way I did. When we first met, it was refreshing that you clearly had no idea who I was. You were the only one in that penthouse that didn’t know I was some hotshot CEO-to-be and I liked that. I just. I never expected our thing, us, to drag out the way it did. The further into things we got, the harder it became to say something. And then the more serious we got, the more I couldn’t say something, because—because saying something would’ve meant also mentioning that I’m leaving the company and there were a lot of implications in that. Like ‘I’m doing this for you’ and ‘Please wait for me’ and ‘I care about you a scary amount.’”

I care about you a scary amount.

You can’t just make me fall in love with you and then end up in the hospital like this.

Baekhyun’s eyes shine with tears and clear determination. “Those things would’ve been true, but I also needed to do this on my own. I needed to quit quietly. Junmyeon was the only one who knew my plans at first. And then when… when everything went bad, Junmyeon told Jongdae, so that Jongdae wouldn’t murder me, and then I told Sehun when I was getting close to telling you because I had hurt the kid a lot without even realizing and he was so protective of you and I just—I fucked up so much, Xing. I fucked up so much. I wasn’t purposely trying to hurt you or anyone. The opposite, really. I guess I hoped that if I could keep you in the dark about who I was long enough, that it’d no longer matter because I’d have left SM by then.”

“Baekhyun, that’s—”

“I know.” Baekhyun swallows. “It’s almost funny because I—was so terrified of what was happening between us, but it was still so easy to fall into… you. Us. I wanted you around all the time, wanted to see or talk to you every time I was having a rough day. But I only really indulged myself that once. After that photoshoot. My father had been in rare form that day, talking about how proud he was of me and that I’d make a great CEO and how I’d ‘find the right woman one day’ and it just—that was the first time I thought but I’ve already found Yixing. And it was so fucking scary but instead of running like I thought maybe I should’ve, I just embraced it. Let you sweep me away.”

Yixing takes Baekhyun’s face into his hands and presses their lips together.

It’s gentle, sweet, their mouths molding together easily, falling back into a well-practiced motion after going so long without it.

“What was that for?” Baekhyun whispers as his forehead presses into the crook of Yixing’s neck, hands balling up around handfuls of Yixing’s shirt. Yixing holds him close, sinking fingers into his hair again to gently scratch at his scalp.

“Because it’s... okay.” As okay as it can be right now. “Because I… think you’ve explained yourself enough and I know you’re tired. And because… I’m sorry, too. You’ve been trying to explain but I wouldn’t let you and--that day in the spa… I shouldn’t have left you like that. I shouldn’t have even—“

“It hurt, Yixing, but I provoked you. I wouldn’t stop trying to get your attention.”

“Still. I knew, somehow, that you letting me top meant something big for you, even if I didn’t know why, and I—I didn’t even leave with the intention of hurting you I just couldn’t handle the implications when we were done. I still couldn’t be with you, my boss, and I had worked hard to bury my emotions when it came to you, and that just—dug them right back up. I-I was so overwhelmed but that’s still no excuse--”

“I know. I get it.” Baekhyun places a chaste kiss on his neck. “I promise I get it.” They sit in silence for a while before Baekhyun says, “It sounds silly to say it out loud, but I feel like—like letting someone fuck me means letting them have me, and you’re the first one I’ve ever wanted to-to give myself to. Ever.”

Yixing thought as much, and it doesn’t ease his guilt over leaving Baekhyun in that room in the slightest. But still, they move on. Baekhyun sits up again and they share the blanket wrapped around his shoulders and the thoughts and feelings they were too scared to voice before. Yixing admits that maybe he lied in the very beginning, and tells Baekhyun about Luhan, and how with him, he had mastered the art of ignoring feelings, repressing them, so it was easy to do it with Baekhyun, to pretend that they weren’t acting like genuine lovers despite the signs. Baekhyun isn’t angry; he’s happy, he says, because he understands more now.

And Yixing watches as the light from the storm reflects on the tear-streaks on Baekhyun’s face as he apologizes, really apologizes for sleeping with Jongin. They weren’t together, it wasn’t cheating, they assure each other, but realistically, the line is too hazy. They might as well have been together, Baekhyun cries, but for now they make peace that it happened, for now they put it behind them.

“This doesn’t just fix everything,” Yixing whispers, even though they’ve been holding hands under the blanket since Baekhyun started crying. “You know it can’t. It’s going to take time--”

“I know. But we--we have time now. Despite everything, I’ll do whatever it takes to be with you, Yixing. I want you by my side, in my life, however you’ll have me, too.”

Nodding, emotion welling up in his chest, Yixing says, “Me too.”

Another silence falls over them as the storm quiets too. Baekhyun sniffles, and Yixing chews on his bottom lip.

“I’m also sorry for drunk-dialing you,” he murmurs eventually. “Kyungsoo hit me on the head the next day for being an idiot, if that helps.”

Baekhyun faintly giggles. “Maybe a little. I’m sorry this turned into such a mess, Zhang Yixing. I never wanted to hurt you.”

“I know, Byun Baekhyun. I never wanted to hurt you either.”

Baekhyun shuffles forward a little, leaning to rest his face in the crook of Yixing’s neck again, and they hold each other until Yixing is positive Baekhyun has fallen asleep, until, “What if I get tired of you, Yixing?” Baekhyun whispers, pain coloring his voice. “Like he got tired of her?”

Yixing pulls back and grabs Baekhyun’s chin and pulls his gaze toward him. “Then you talk to me. We can't work it out if you aren't honest with me about everything and vice-versa, okay?” Baekhyun nods, eyes squeezing shut. “Even if you think it’ll hurt me. We have to be honest with each other.”

“Yeah, okay. Okay.” Baekhyun nods again, and lets his forehead rest against Yixing’s mouth, who kisses it, once, twice.

After another few moments, Yixing carefully stands up and holds out his hand. “Come here, I want to show you something.” When Baekhyun obliges, Yixing pulls him from the couch and laces their fingers together. Baekhyun stares at them again, their hands, as if he’s unsure what to think, as if he’s never known the marvels of handholding, as if they’ve never known.

But then he blinks up at Yixing and squeezes his hand with the smallest smile, and Yixing squeezes back.

He thinks they’re going to be just fine, in time.

Yixing leads Baekhyun into his bedroom and deposits him on the edge of his bed before rummaging through his closet, pulls the bench away from the wall, then a stand from the closet, and then his keyboard.

Baekhyun freezes when he sees it, only moves because Yixing is pulling him to his feet again, and he suddenly looks so much younger, so lost and confused and hurt. “Y-You play?” Baekhyun asks.

Yixing nods. “Since I was six. But I haven’t… played as much since my mom passed. She always liked when I played for her.” Biting his lip, he sits down and cautiously pulls Baekhyun down with him. “Sit with me.”

“I don't—I don't remember…” Baekhyun shakes his head, gaze fixated on the keys in front of him.

“That’s okay,” Yixing murmurs, pressing their thighs together in attempt to anchor him, maybe them both, and tapping a key on his end. “You will.”

It takes one song; Yixing gets through his own, somewhat simplified version of Can’t Let Go by Huang An—to look over and find Baekhyun in tears.

The minute Yixing gets his arms around Baekhyun, the latter breaks down into sobs. He cries quietly into Yixing’s neck, trembles in his arms, and Yixing can do nothing but hold him through it and shed a few tears of his own while rumbling barrages outside again, and the rain resonates loudly on the windows and roof of the apartment building.

When the rain softens and with it, Baekhyun’s tears, he shakily murmurs, “C-Can you play it again? One more time.”

“Of course,” Yixing whispers back, kissing Baekhyun’s head before placing his fingers back on the keys.

He plays a little slower, relishing the feeling of playing this song after so much avoiding it, and Baekhyun nestles comfortably against his shoulder, sniffling pitifully throughout, but by the end of the song this time, his hand gently rests over Yixing’s, just enough to feel the movements of his fingers as they press into each key, until Yixing finishes and Baekhyun laces their fingers together.

“Where are you staying tonight?” Yixing gently asks as Baekhyun kisses his palm.

“Junmyeon’s. Or…”

“Here? If you want.”

Baekhyun nods, pressing closer to him. “Yes. I—please.”

Yixing nods too. “Yeah, of course.”

When Baekhyun pulls back to look at him, eyes puffy, red and droopy with exhaustion, it’s he that reels Yixing in this time, thumbing Yixing’s cheek as they kiss, soft, but enough to send butterflies running rampant in Yixing’s gut.

And when they fall into bed a few minutes later, stripped down to only their sweatpants and snuggling under Yixing’s bedcovers, Baekhyun kisses him again. “It’s been so hard to sleep without you all this time,” he whispers against Yixing’s lips. “I’ve missed you so much.”

“Me too, baby.”

They kiss until Baekhyun’s movements turn lethargic at best, exhaustion overcoming him, and Yixing silences his weak protests against going to sleep.

“You’re exhausted, Baekhyun. We’ll talk more tomorrow, yeah?”

Baekhyun’s already giving in, yawning into Yixing’s neck, an arm tossed over his chest. “Okay. Tomorrow.”

“Goodnight, ‘Hyunnie.”

“‘Night, Xing.”

~*~

When Yixing wakes the next morning, their bodies have completely shifted and he finds himself comfortably nestled against Baekhyun’s chest, with Baekhyun’s fingers slowly brushing through his hair.

He plants a sleepy kiss to the skin of Baekhyun’s chest, then blinks blearily up at him.

Baekhyun’s smiling. It’s soft, fond, and he doesn't hesitate to kiss Yixing good morning, melting him on the spot.

It effectively wakes him up, the way they continue to kiss. It warms his skin and sets his nerves abuzz, to feel Baekhyun’s lips against his own in the morning like this once again.

Baekhyun sinks down when Yixing scoots up and props himself on his arm, fingers grazing along Baekhyun’s cheek as the kissing deepens, their tongues meeting halfway through parted lips, morning breath be damned.

Words go unsaid as it continues, as Yixing sits up and against the headboard, too warm and too sleepy to stay horizontal, as Baekhyun follows him without question, straddling his lap and trailing sweet kisses down Yixing’s neck.

Yixing giggles, and it sounds weird in the thick silence, but his neck is sensitive as ever and Baekhyun keeps grazing his lips along it in a way he knows is ticklish.

And when their mouths meet again, Baekhyun gently grinds his hips down, breaths hitching together. They’re both half-hard from sleep and deprived of each other and the friction is so, so good.

“I want you,” Baekhyun whispers against his lips, slowly rocking their hips together. “Can I have you?”

Yixing nods, too distracted by the way their lips keep grazing to not kiss him. So it’s a few moments, it’s when Yixing kisses his way down Baekhyun’s neck instead that he murmurs back, “You can have anything you want, baby.”

Baekhyun shudders, whimpers, but it’s quiet, matches the ambiance they’ve created beautifully.

They get fully undressed then, Baekhyun doing the honors and kissing his way back up Yixing’s legs like they’re precious to him. He wraps a hand around the base of Yixing’s almost-fully hard cock. “Lube,” Baekhyun says, before wrapping his lips around the tip and sucking.

Yixing’s hips buck involuntarily and he fumbles blindly for his nightstand, to pull the drawer open and retrieve the small bottle he keeps in there. Baekhyun holds his free hand out for it, but doesn't do anything once the bottle is handed over, instead utterly laving Yixing’s length with his tongue, moaning softly around it like it’s his favorite meal.

Yixing’s wanton sighs are soft and he threads his fingers gently through Baekhyun’s hair, watching him through half-lidded eyes, admiring the stretch of his pretty lips and the way his eyelashes fan along his cheeks.

He’s fucking beautiful and Yixing can’t quite pinpoint when he fell in love with him.

Baekhyun slips off of him, lips parted and breathless as he blinks up at Yixing through his lashes. Yixing tightens his grip in his hair and pulls him upward, crashing their mouths together needily.

He hears Baekhyun pop the lid on the lube as Yixing sucks his lip into his mouth, and spreads his knees a little, offering Baekhyun more room to work with, to prep him, but the fingers Yixing loves so much never come.

It’s not until Baekhyun whimpers against his mouth that Yixing realizes Baekhyun is prepping himself, has his fingers in himself.

“A-Are you sure?” Yixing asks. Maybe they shouldn’t even be doing this at all, maybe this is too soon.

“Ngh—I wanna do this right this time, Zhang Yixing.”

Pre-come drips from Yixing’s length as he breaks their following messy kisses to watch a debauched Baekhyun fuck himself, bounce up and down on his own fingers. With his lips free he throws his head back, mouth hanging open. Yixing’s name falls from his lips as half a whisper, half a sigh.

Yixing runs his hands up Baekhyun’s thighs appreciatively, grasps his hips with a squeezing grip, wraps a hand around his cock, strokes him firmly.

The moan Baekhyun unleashes then is the loudest either of them have gotten this morning, and Yixing thinks that if the quiet, intense mood was a bubble, the volume of his cry would have stretched it thin, just shy of bursting.

Yixing’s free hand roams, spending a lot of time playing with Baekhyun’s nipples and with Yixing’s help, it’s not long at all before Baekhyun’s hand reappears and he’s scooting closer, angling himself just right, lining himself up.

It’s slow, the way he sinks down, slower than Yixing usually goes when the positions are reversed, and the tight heat gradually encompassing his dick is maddening but so, so good.

Yixing drops his head back against the wall once Baekhyun is fully seated. “Baekhyunnie,” he breathes, and lips kiss their way from his chin to his neck while Yixing squeezes Baekhyun’s hips in an attempt to keep his own from moving prematurely.

Baekhyun’s hands cup the sides of Yixing’s head and drag it back down until their mouths meet hungrily, as Baekhyun starts to rock in Yixing’s lap.

It’s early, Yixing realizes. The warm glow of sunlight streaming through his window casts shadows on the opposite wall. One mass, moving together, never separating enough for light to pass between them.

Yixing’s hands cascade slowly up Baekhyun’s back, before his nails gently dig in and drag downward as he moans.

Baekhyun shudders. “I’ve missed you so much,” he whispers, eyes shut where their foreheads rest against each other.

Yixing’s breath hitches, harder to come by with the addicting feeling of Baekhyun grinding along his length just right. “M-Missed you…”

They kiss until they’re dizzy with lack of air, until soft gasps fall between them as their pleasure mounts.

“Lay down,” Yixing murmurs after a while, helping Baekhyun slide off—they both whimper at the loss—and scoot backward and off his knees until he’s on his back and Yixing is crawling over him and re-entering him with ease.

Baekhyun moans, head pressing into the mattress, the sunlight’s warm glow falling across his skin now. Yixing really doesn't think he’s ever seen anyone more beautiful.

“Right there,” Baekhyun mutters, and his nails dig into Yixing’s hips to help guide him.

Yixing presses forward and rolls his hips to massage that bundle of nerves inside him, to make Baekhyun mewl with pleasure.

”Yes—“ he cries, leaving one hand on Yixing’s hip and sinking his other into Yixing’s hair, blindly pulling him closer.

Yixing nips at Baekhyun’s neck, licks and bites and kisses as he slowly gyrates his hips, slowly fucks Baekhyun with all he has, soft sounds falling from their mouths and the way Baekhyun tugs his hair in time with every thrust putting Yixing on the edge.

“Are you trying to m-make me come untouched again, ge?”

“No. Just—Just want this to last.”

Baekhyun tugs his hair hard enough this time to move him, until their faces are level and Yixing is being kissed in a way he doesn't think he ever has been before.

Something about it makes him realize they have all the time in the world for this.

He wraps a hand around Baekhyun’s cock and strokes him the same pace of his thrusts, twists his grip at random intervals the way he knows Baekhyun loves so much.

Baekhyun can't kiss anymore, unable to do anything but fill the silence of the room with his melodic voice, moaning and mewling until he comes all over his own chest, grip in Yixing’s hair tightening painfully, begging him to keep going.

Yixing slows his thrusts even more to lick the come from one of Baekhyun’s nipples—”fuck”—and kiss it, before doing the same to the other even though it’s come-free.

His hips stutter, the pressure in his gut is getting to be too much, and just as Baekhyun calms, Yixing’s orgasm rips through him powerfully.

He vaguely registers Baekhyun’s soft encouragements, the way his hands help Yixing keep moving to properly milk his release from him. It renders him boneless and he barely manages to pull out and fall to the side, so he doesn't crush him.

Baekhyun is on him in an instant, figuratively, at least, pressing close and feathering tickling kisses along his face and neck.

When Yixing can see properly again, he kisses him full-on, and it’s like that kiss that shook Yixing before.

Baekhyun is his, and he is Baekhyun’s.

They have all the time in the world. To do this. To work this out.

Baekhyun cleans them up with sweatpants, because Yixing can still barely move and Baekhyun claims he’s too lazy and sated to get out of bed, and then they’re settled on their sides, hands on each other’s hips, and staring.

“I’m sorry,” Yixing whispers after several moments. “This is how it should've been before. In the spa. I shouldn't have handled you that way—“

Baekhyun shakes his head. “The sex was great.” A wary smile. “It was you just… leaving me there that hurt like hell.”

Remorse fills Yixing to the brim and he caresses Baekhyun’s cheek with his thumb. He can feel the pained expression on his own face, but words are failing him. He feels awful.

They stare at each other a moment before a small, sad smile overtakes Baekhyun’s mouth. “I know,” he murmurs in understanding.

“I’m sorry.”

Baekhyun gently presses his lips to his. “Me too.”

When they’ve kissed enough to last them a lifetime, Yixing asks, “What are you going to do? About your living situation, I mean.”

Baekhyun shrugs slowly, biting his lip. “I might just grab a motel room for a couple of nights to give me more time to work things out. So I don’t impose on Junmyeonnie and Jongdae.”

Yixing doesn’t even think about it before he’s saying, “You could stay here if you want.” His thumb rubs mindless circles into Baekhyun’s hip as his eyes droop sleepily. “Until you figure something out. It would… I don’t know, give us time to work us out too.”

“In your shoebox apartment?” The smirk on Baekhyun’s face is pretty and it’s obviously making light of their fight but Yixing does feel a pang of sadness at the words.

He laughs, a hair awkwardly, and drops his gaze to Baekhyun’s bare chest. “Yeah, bad idea I guess.”

And then, like he’s done so many times before, Baekhyun pounces, pushes Yixing to his back and rolls on top of him, giggling and clinging to his heart’s content. He whispers his next words like a secret. “But I think I’d like that, ge.”

“Yeah?”

“Yeah.”

“Okay. Okay then.” Yixing bites back his grin and pulls Baekhyun down for a kiss.

~*~

Yixing’s apartment doesn’t feel so small with Baekhyun occupying it, too, somehow.

It should absolutely feel cramped with an extra person sharing his bed, and his closet-sized bathroom, the kitchenette, especially when they’re so used to sharing a penthouse, but it doesn’t. Baekhyun doesn’t complain about the lack of space at all; he even seems happy about it. ”All the more reason to cuddle up to you, Zhang,” he had mumbled into Yixing’s neck just the night before as they shared the couch and dinner and watched a movie together.

It’s only been a couple of days now since Baekhyun left SM, but it feels like they were never apart, falling back into each other so easily despite their caution and quiet discussions about their relationship and communication and trust, and even tentative plans for the future.

Today, specifically, was Yixing’s first day back at work since Baekhyun left it, and he was unsurprised to find the business in chaos, appointments cancelling left and right as if Baekhyun leaving put every single department in distress, when really it was just his father panicking and giving them all impossible deadlines.

It was a slow day for Yixing and Jongin, by all regards, but coming home from a long day to Baekhyun rummaging his fridge is a sight that warms his heart an almost unreasonable amount.

He pulls Baekhyun from the cold and into his warmth, trapping him against the counter in a greeting kiss.

Baekhyun melts with a hum, blindly reaching out to close the refrigerator door without pulling back from Yixing’s mouth. “If this is what being a stay-at-home partner is like every day, count me in,” he mumbles, making Yixing chuckle and bury his face in Baekhyun’s neck.

So they kiss some more, and make dinner, and crash on the couch for a movie, a seeming routine for them that Yixing doesn’t think he could ever tire of simply because it’s with Baekhyun, but the routine changes a little when Yixing gets out of the shower before bed, toweling his hair as he walks into his room to find Baekhyun sitting at the piano.

He watches as Baekhyun gulps, as his eyebrows pull together when he hits a wrong note, but he’s playing, playing a song from memory, it seems, for the first time in years.

And this, this is something Yixing knows he could never, ever grow tired of. Listening to and watching Baekhyun fill their space with the beautiful notes of a piano, with his focus and lithe fingers dancing across the keys almost naturally, despite his hiatus from playing.

Yixing waits until Baekhyun makes it to the end of the song before making himself known and sliding onto the bench next to him. “That was beautiful.”

“It wasn’t,” Baekhyun chuckles drily. “But thank you.”

“It was beautiful. You’re-You’re beautiful, y’know?”

Color fills Baekhyun’s cheeks as he shyly bites back a smile, avoiding Yixing’s gaze.

Baekhyun presses a high F key and waits for the note to fade around them before he softly says, “I love you,” eyes on his own hands. Yixing’s breath catches in his throat. “I kind of… whispered it last night and you didn't say anything back but then I realized maybe you were asleep or you didn't hear me or maybe you don't feel that way which sucks but that’s okay and I just—“

Yixing grabs Baekhyun’s face, pulls it toward him, and presses their mouths together earnestly. Baekhyun squawks a little, at first, but he quickly relaxes into it, lips softening against Yixing’s and random notes ringing out as Baekhyun drags his hands until they're wrapping around Yixing’s waist.

Their lips audibly smack when they part and Baekhyun’s cheeks look pinker than his lips. His fingers clutch at Yixing’s shirt. “I love you,” he repeats. Yixing can feel him trembling. “And I’m fucking terrified.”

Yixing kisses his soft lips once, twice, and instead of parting after the third, he murmurs, “I love you, too,” into Baekhyun’s lips. ’You don't have to be terrified’ or ’We can be terrified together’ and even ’I heard you that one time I know’ is all on the tip of his tongue, too, but Baekhyun presses forward so firmly Yixing couldn't speak if he wanted to, able to do nothing but loop his arms around Baekhyun to keep them from falling off the bench, and take advantage of Baekhyun’s shaky gasp by deepening the kiss.

Baekhyun trembles more than Yixing does while he kisses seemingly every inch of Yixing’s skin beneath the sheets later, picking him apart piece by piece and putting him back together again with soft words and caresses and brushes of lips.

There’s still a long way to go, but Yixing has never felt more complete.

~*~

EPILOGUE

 

Two Years Later

“Yixing, Yixing, Yixing!” Multiple voices call across the pristine wooden floors, little ballet skirts billowing behind them as they scamper over to him.

He grins. “Yes, little ones?”

The three girls beam up at him, cheeks pink from having just finished a class. “What are we learning next week, sunbae?” one of them asks as she sways.

He chuckles as he squats down to be more even with them, though it still makes him a little shorter. “Can it be a surprise this once?” he teases.

Two of them scrunch up their noses cutely and shake their heads, while the third claps her hands together excitedly. “I love surprises! Is it Jongin? Is he going to help you again?”

“Now if I told you that, it wouldn’t be a surprise, would it?” Yixing winks and pats her on the head, sending them off to the small front lobby to wait for their parents as they squeal over the possibility that Jongin is visiting their class again. He chuckles one more time, “As if they don’t see him every week anyway,” he murmurs to himself.

Jongin had happily joined Yixing in his quest to start a dance studio, a year ago when they were preparing to open. Kyungsoo had just taken over SM as the new CEO, and was more than willing to adjust their hours so they each worked thirty, instead of their original forty (Yixing) and twenty (Jongin), giving Yixing more time to devote to his first year as a dance teacher slash business owner, but still have a proper income just in case things went south.

They didn’t go south, luckily, or haven’t yet at least. For the first year, Yixing only took kids from the ages of 12-18 as a trial run of sorts, and now, after the two month summer break coming up, he’ll take children as young as four years old, and as long as the first six months with all age groups go as planned, he’ll even get to book a theatre and let them have a recital.

He lets out a content sigh, staring at himself in the wall-sized mirror. Things couldn’t have gone more smoothly, he thinks as he rearranges his mussed hair. He has never been more happy.

“Yixing, Yixing, Yixing!” a teasing, lilting voice calls from the doorway that leads to the lobby, and Yixing doesn’t have to see him to know he’s smirking.

He doesn’t have to wait long for Baekhyun to slither under his arm and kiss his cheek. “Just how long have you been here, huh?” Yixing mumbles, but he smiles and wraps his arms around Baekhyun all the same.

“Long enough to witness you being the cutest sunbae.”

“Shut up.”

Baekhyun giggles. “It was cute. They love you a lot. I can relate.”

Yixing’s nose scrunches of its own accord, just like the girls’ did a few moments ago, as he leans in for a kiss on the lips this time. “Hi,” he mutters, breathing deep while his hands slowly rub up and down Baekhyun’s back. “How was class?”

“Good!” Warmth seeps into Yixing’s heart at how Baekhyun lights up with his answer. “The written final was a piece of cake, so all I have left is the practical next week--”

“Which you’ll nail--”

“And then I’ll be one semester away from being a college graduate. Again.”

Humming happily, Yixing dips in for another kiss. “I’m so proud of you, you know.” Because Baekhyun took control of his own life after letting his father hold the reigns for so long; he’s almost done studying music like he always wanted, on top of helping manage the dance studio so that Yixing’s not bogged down and freelancing for Kyungsoo and SM for extra income. He stays busy, brainstorming advertisement ideas and practicing piano pieces and studying for theory classes and making sure their few employees get paid on time and loving Yixing unconditionally. He does it all with the brightest smile on his face, and Yixing thinks that happier than I’ve ever been feeling is shared between them both.

“Hey! I’m proud of you, too!” Baekhyun uselessly argues, before softening. “Next week I’ll be done with school, and the week after that is the last week of dance classes. I’m proud of us.” Their kiss now is gentle, sweet, loving. “Mm, what are we gonna do with all our extra free time this summer, huh?” Baekhyun’s lips curl against Yixing’s.

Feigning ignorance, Yixing steps back with his most pondering expression, pulling Baekhyun with him as he heads for the exit. “Hmm… we could repaint the studio? Go furniture shopping?” All things they did when this all started, when they really got started. At Yixing’s lease for his shoebox apartment expiring, they rented a bigger apartment together, and while Yixing worked full time at SM, Baekhyun oversaw the daily renovations of the dance studio. But the little things, shopping for furniture for both places, painting the studio themselves instead of paying someone to do it; all of that is so special to Yixing, despite the mundaneness of it.

Baekhyun scoffs. “What a tease.”

Yixing just laughs. “I think the adult topics should be discussed at home, no?”

And Baekhyun playfully grumbles his displeasure as they step into the lobby and their contact lessens until they’re merely holding hands, heading over to the front desk.

“How are things looking tonight, Chanyeollie?” Yixing asks, peeking over his shoulder at the computer.

Chanyeol grins up at him. “So I’ve been taking a poll, right?”

“What--”

“And it turns out, several of our current dance moms--”

“And dads!” Baekhyun inserts.

“--have younger kids or nieces and nephews or whatever that they one-hundred percent want to sign up when you widen the age range next dance-year. At least fifteen new kids on top of the 40 returning. Plus once that ad that Soo and Baekhyun put together goes live--”

“Chanyeol, breathe,” Yixing laughs.

Chanyeol just grins again. “You might just have to hire another instructor Yixing. And you’ll still have the money to put on a recital, if I’m looking at everything correctly, but especially if you charge extra for costumes--”

“I don’t want to overcharge people, Yeollie.”

Baekhyun squeezes his hand. “Maybe for the first recital we can just take donations for the costumes. Most people will put something forward and the costumes don’t even have to be expensive.” He nudges Yixing’s shoulder with his chin. “We got this.”

Yixing beams as Chanyeol nods confidently at them both. “Am I good to go guys?” he asks then. “Soo’s waiting for me and I gotta be at my real job at the ass--” he coughs, glancing with wide eyes at the two kids sitting in the chairs across from his desk. “--super early in the morning ‘cause we have some big shot producer coming in to check out the studio.” Chanyeol’s another hero in Yixing’s life, having a real job at a real recording studio yet still picking up two desk shifts a week for Yixing, while Baekhyun picks up the third.

Yixing ruffles his hair. “Of course. Tell Soo that we all have to get together for drinks soon, yeah? The four of us. It’s been a while since we’ve done it.”

“Definitely!” Chanyeol grabs his wallet and keys from where he stashes it under the desk and hugs them each one-armed, before saying ‘bye to each of the girls by name, then holding the door open for their parents, who happen to walk in at the same time.

“Well that was easy,” Baekhyun giggles.

They share a kiss inside the front door when they make it home later, as if they hadn’t traveled home together, and Baekhyun parts to go change into something more comfortable while Yixing throws some leftover pizza in the microwave for them to eat.

Feeling maybe a little nostalgic, he leaves the microwave and pads into the living room and across it to the same shelf of pictures Yixing has always had of himself, Luhan, and Jongdae, of himself and his mother. Only now there are more; one of Baekhyun and his mother, and the best group photo their group of friends has ever taken, featuring Sehun holding the selfie stick yet somehow still hiding half of his face, with Jongin wrapped around him from behind; Baekhyun and Yixing to their left, Baekhyun’s nose pressed to Yixing’s cheek as they laugh. Chanyeol and Kyungsoo are to the right clinging to each other, Chanyeol on his knees because he was too tall for the picture and head pressed to Kyungsoo’s chest whose eyes are squeezed shut, and Amber and Yoona hang off of each side of Jongin, making silly faces. Jongdae, Junmyeon, and Minseok stand together at the back, also laughing, and holding each other just subtly enough for random onlookers to not know the difference, but just enough for everyone that knows them to know what they are, how in love the three of them are.

And at the center of all the photos is one of Yixing and Baekhyun alone, a little blurry in quality, but similar to their pose in the group picture, only Yixing is the one pressing his smile against Baekhyun’s face, hands clutching his cream colored cashmere sweater.

Yixing gets a little misty-eyed every time he looks at this shelf, admittedly. He wouldn’t trade his friends, his family for the world. They’ve built and re-built their trust over and over, especially Baekhyun and Yixing, especially Baekhyun and Kyungsoo, but they did it. And they’re all strong as ever.

“Come to bed, lover,” a too-sultry voice calls behind him.

Yixing turns with a smirk to find Baekhyun posted cheesily in the doorway leading to their bedroom, in the maroon cashmere sweater Yixing gave him years ago and nothing else. “Never call me that again and I’ll think about it,” Yixing teases, but he’s inching his way over anyway; he’s not fooling anyone.

“Hmm… come to bed, sweetcheeks?”

Yixing shakes his head, smirk widening, feet inching.

“Buttercup?”

Yixing snorts.

“Sex god?”

“Well now we’re getting somewhere.”

Baekhyun’s loud laugh rings across the apartment, blanketing Yixing in the undeniable feeling of home. “You’re ridiculous,” he mutters through his giggles, Yixing close enough for him to yank by the shirt into the bedroom, kicking the door shut behind them.

Baekhyun hums contentedly once Yixing is stripped down to his underwear, Baekhyun straddling his hips and pinning his wrists to the mattress. Their lips are pressed together when Baekhyun happily murmurs, “I love you.”

“Love you more—“ Yixing’s voice breaks off into a groan, mouth in a grin, when Baekhyun grinds their hips together with purpose.

More than you could possibly know, he tacks on in his mind, because sometimes they get on each other’s nerves, sometimes they’re too busy to spend much time together, sometimes they forget to eat dinner in favor of this, but Yixing knows he, they, couldn’t be happier, knows this is where he’s meant to be, where Baekhyun’s meant to be, free of unwanted jobs and unwanted restrictions, drowning in the happiness of being together and living the way they want.

Together.