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Sarcastic Destiny.

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Chanyeol wasn’t having any of it. The mark on his forearm wasn’t there just for decoration. It had a meaning, it was telling him something, and he wasn’t going to throw that out of the window. He was going to wait, to prepare for the one he was meant to be with. For his Âme soeur. The one with a matching mark.

 

 

 

Jongin, fucking around, and laughing like a seal. Smiling like nothing hurts, dancing like everything's fine. Jongin, sad, and poor little Jongin, he wasn’t a big fan of being alive, but he wasn’t a big fan of dying either. 

 

 

 

There was something about Baekhyun’s life. Baekhyun’s laugh. Baekhyun’s mark. Something off. Something faded. Something death took away. 

 

 

 

 

I mean, yes, he was a pretty cool kid. And he did not have a lot of enemy. Who would want to be against the boy who could cause an earthquake just by stomping his foot ? Pretty much no one. But that was just about it. No one wanted to be against him not because they liked him, but because they were scared of him. Kyungsoo wanted something. Something more than acquaintances, more than scaredy cats who wouldn’t come near him. He wanted a friend, or an enemy. Someone to love, of someone to fight. Someone that would care, and that would make him care. 

 

 

 

  

Soulmate : Two bodies, sharing a soul.

 

 

 

 

 

-

 

 

Being honest, there was a bit of envy in those eyes. A bit of, " Why not me ? " and " Am I not good enough ? " A lot of questions, and worries. Looking around him and seeing how almost everyone has found it, Park Chanyeol was feeling left out. He was wondering, questioning, and maybe even, he was hating God or who knows who for not giving it to him. Because that wasn’t fair, that he was the only one. That wasn’t fair that he still hadn’t find the one person that would complete him. Not after searching for so long. 

 

Well, at least, that’s what Chanyeol was thinking. Maybe reality was a bit different. Maybe he was still young, and maybe, just maybe, he was kind of impatient as well. Because Chanyeol was only 17, and if he was really looking around him, he would have seen, that he wasn’t the only one without a plus one. He wasn’t the only teenager in the cafeteria, that was absolutely alone. And maybe he was just a tiny bit over dramatic. But of course, who would say that to him ? 

 

 

Chanyeol sighed for the umptieth time as he grabbed his chopsticks and started to eat his  black bean noodles, his eyes never leaving the couple in front of him. It wasn’t helping, really, that their tongues were down their throats, and that they were feeling each other up without a care in the world. The girl’s legs tight around her boyfriend’s waist and her hands buried in his hair. The sight wasn’t particularly pretty, but for Chanyeol, it was something that he had always wanted. Not the face sucking, but the loving each other. He could see their mark glowing under their skin, and what could me more beautiful than this ?

 

 

" Hoy. " Chanyeol could feel the hand on his shoulder, but he didn’t move. " How can you eat looking at this ? It’s a bit too much don’t you think ? "

 

An ironic laugh came out of the teenager’s mouth before looking up at his friend. 

 

" Really Jongin ? "

 

" What ? " The tanned boy asked, putting his tray on the table and sitting down.

 

" Not sure you’re one to talk. "

 

" What the fuck Dude, I’ve never done that. "

 

" Yeah, right, so you weren’t kissing the life out of your little boyfriend out at the entrance gate when I came looking for you a while ago ? "

 

" Not my boyfriend, and I so wasn’t. "

 

" Yes, you so weren’t. "

 

 

Jongin was eating like a pig, as usual, while Chanyeol was looking at him, a bit disgusted, and wondering why was this guy his best friend, but then again, it’s not like he was the most normal one around here. 

 

The younger, stuffed his face, not even looking at him, phone in his left hand and chopsticks in his right. Chanyeol eyes started to wonder, and for a moment, they find themselves observing his best friend's features. His sharp jaw and full lips. His tanned skin, and almost white hair. Jongin was a real sight. He was hot, and the boy fucking knew it. There wasn’t a girl in his grade who did not want a piece of him, and he was more than glad to oblige. Sure, the black little mark on his forearm was there to prove that he did have someone to wait for, but Jongin wasn’t one to wait forever. He would totally be on board once he find the person he was meant to be with, but until then, he was going to have all the fun in the world. Which, in his case, meant fucking around with everyone who was willing to have him (and that was a lot). 

 

 

" There’s a party this weekend at Jongdae’s place " Jongin was suddenly looking at him, his lips shining and his chin covered in sauce, and for a moment Chanyeol asked himself why was he the only one seeing Jongin as he was; a fucking disaster. 

 

" Of course there is one. " Jongdae loved partying. He was always one for throwing out those big ass parties for everyone to join. There wasn’t even a particular event. He just liked having people over. 

 

" Care to join ? "

 

" Yeah, I’m not sure that’s such a good idea, I think my parents aren’t really fond of me going out since we came home shit faced two weeks ago you know. " Really, it wasn’t that his parents were strict. Seeing Chanyeol and Jongin trying to come in while using a twig instead of his keys, Chanyeol having lost a shoe somewhere on the way home and Jongin wearing his shirt on his head, wearing nothing else but his jeans, this, only this, maybe that would have been okay, but when they figured out that not only they stole a traffic sign, but that Chanyeol had used his fire to burn down a bush for absolutely no reason, they were a bit less okay. 

 

" Oh come on ! Your parents love me, I just need to ask nicely and they’ll say yes. They don't know how to refuse me anything ! " Jongin added, pointing his chopsticks towards Chanyeol. He had a point though. They really did love him, considering him like a second son. 

 

" I’m not so sure Jongin, I kind of want to stay home. " 

 

" Yeah, because that’s how you’re going to find your Âme soeur. Your butt stuck on your bed while going through your Tumblr feed all night long. "

 

" Uh, first of all, I wouldn’t sit on my bed, I would lie down. And second of all, I would rather drown myself in my Tumblr feed than going to another one of Jongdae’s party if it is to witness everyone acting like fucking lovebirds, and sucking each other’s faces while I’m all alone sitting on the couch. "

 

" No one asked you to stay alone on the couch. Am I drowning myself in self pity while people are with they’re plus one ? I don’t think so, Chanyeol, I’m having the time of my life. "

 

" Yes Jongin, and I am not like you. I do not want to go with someone just for the sake of not being alone and lonely for one night. I don’t wan't to fill my life with nameless people. " 

 

 

Jongin froze for a bit, and Chanyeol knew he hit home. That was maybe a bit harsh, to say it like it was a bad thing, but the truth was rarely a good thing to hear. Even more painful when you’re entire life was a make believe canvas. Jongin could fool anyone with his smiles and jokes, but Chanyeol knew him for almost fifteen years. There wasn't a smile he could fake without Chanyeol knowing, and Jongin faked a lot. Because Jongin was feeling lonely, Jongin was feeling sad, and he was feeling empty. Because Jongin was alone, because he cried himself to sleep sometimes, when he thought no one would hear him, and because Jongin wasn’t a big fan of himself for that matter. Jongin wasn’t a big fan of his own family. The truth is, Jongin wasn’t a big fan of being alive, but he wasn’t a big fan of dying either, and Chanyeol knew that. Chanyeol would thank God everyday for that. Jongin was faking his happiness, and it was painful to watch, painful to witness, but Chanyeol couldn’t do much more to help. He tried, a lot, and he still was, but sometimes, somethings are way bigger than ourselves, and there wasn't a particular way to fix them. 

 

 

" Okay, listen Park Chanyeol " Jongin put his chopsticks down and wiped his mouth, acting like nothing happened, " I’m not saying you should fuck a different person every night okay ? All I’m saying is that I'm tired of seeing you sigh every ten seconds because you wanna be with someone. You still haven’t found your Âme soeur, and you will, one day, but until then, maybe you should just try to let lose a bit and find yourself a girlfriend, or a boyfriend. "

 

" You don't get it Jongin.. I don’t wanna be with someone if we aren’t meant to be. It will just end up in tears and broken hearts. I just don’t think that’s a good idea. I'll just wait ’til I find my person. Until then.. " Chanyeol sighed and resumed his eating.

 

" That’s fucked up man ! For all we know you’re gonna find your Âme soeur in like 10 years, and what ? You’re gonna stay alone until then ?! " Jongin cried in disbelief. 

 

" If I have to yes. "

 

 

Jongin couldn’t really believe what he was hearing, but it did seem like the Chanyeol he knew. Still, it was kind of stupid, and a bit depressing. Really, who would be waiting for someone for so long ? He knew how Chanyeol wanted to find his Âme soeur, damn, the guy was looking for them in everyone since he was 3, but this, wasn't this a bit too much ? 

 

 

" Come on.. You could at least come with me "

 

" What’s the point ? Once we’ll get there you'll be leaving me alone to find your new partner for the night "

 

" Yah, I'm not like that ! "

 

" Right, not at all "

 

 

Jongin wasn't really pleased with his best friend right now, that's why he decided to throw his bread at his face, because yes, that was his way of showing him that he didn’t like the way he was talking about him. Really, Jongin was a mature 17 years old teenager. 

 

 

" You fucktard " Chanyeol was rubbing at his nose, glaring at him.

 

" So, are you coming yes or not ? " Jongin looked at him, hopeful, and when he heard the sigh coming out of his best friend, he knew instantly that he had won this one. 

 

" I’m telling you, you do you with my parents, I’m not asking anything to them. "

 

" No prob’ mate " He winked at him and grabbed his water bottle. 

 

 

 

 

There wasn’t a thing in this house that Jongin didn’t know the history behind. He knew where this horrible statue of a cat came from, because he was there when Chanyeol bought it for his parents while being on a field trip with his and Jongin's middle school’s classes. He also knew that on this picture, Yoora was pulling Chanyeol’s hair after the boy threw a fake spider at her. He was there, he actually was the one telling Chanyeol that it would be fun, and for a while (a very little one) it actually was. Until Yoora started to race them and the sibling started to fight, leaving Jongin on the side, laughing his ass off like the prick he was, teary eyes and face red from laughing so hard. Chanyeol’s parents came at the time, and maybe they should have stopped Yoora from ripping off Chanyeol’s hair, but the scene was just a bit too much, and so they had to take a picture. So, there he was, his face ridiculously red, hanging in their living room, like he was a part of the family. And maybe, Jongin liked to think that he was. 

 

He sat down, head back and eyes staring at the ceiling, waiting for his best friend to come back from the kitchen with something to eat. He heard the front door opening and he knew who it was, just by the sound of their steps. Just a few seconds later, Chanyeol came in, his arms full of snacks and he sat down next to Jongin. 

 

" Park Chanyeol, come back here. " A voice came out of the kitchen, and Jongin looked at his best friend, then at the snacks.

 

" Why, what did I do ? " Whiny Chanyeol was back. 

 

" Don’t you start whining like a giant baby." Soon, his father came into the living room, looking at the boys and the snacks they were eating. " What do you think you guys are doing ? "

 

" Uh.. Eating ? " Stating the obvious was always Chanyeol’s best trait.

 

" You don’t say. " His father sat down, looking at Jongin who was eating without a care in the world.

 

" Then why do you ask ? " Chanyeol shrugged and grabbed himself a snack. 

 

" You’re not going to eat all that, are you ? "

 

" We probably are, actually " Jongin smiled, and kept eating. 

 

" Why do I have a teenage boy again ? " He asked himself.

 

" Hey, you chose me. " Chanyeol wasn’t wrong about this. His parents did choose him. And his sister. When he was about 7 months old and her, 3 years old. 

 

" Why did I ? " His father said.

 

" Because of my handsome face. " Chanyeol threw a big toothy smile at his father, and Jongin pushed him off the couch, because, really ?

 

" The boy dare to dream " Chanyeol glared at his best friend, and his father laughed.

 

" I see you guys are in a good mood " 

 

" Aren’t we always ? " Jongin smiled again.

 

" I guess " His best friend’s father smiled back, grabbing one of the snack.

 

" Daaaad, those are ouuuurs "

 

" I haven’t see you pay for them, you ungrateful butt " 

 

" Ugh, that was a lame ass insult Dad. "

 

 

A little laugh left Jongin, and he felt home. This, he was used to, he loved, he cherished. 

 

 

 

An hour passed, laughing and chatting with his father, until he grabbed all the remaining food. Chanyeol looked at him, and soon, he couldn’t tear his eyes away from the little black mark that was embroidered on his father’s wrist. 

 

It has always been one of those obsessions of his, seeing his father’s mark, and the way it was perfectly completing his Dad’s one. 

 

Chanyeol learned about Âme soeur when he was still a little boy. He couldn't be more than 2 when he asked for the very first time why he did have a black little mark on his forearm. His parents sat him down, and they explained. Both his dads were smiling and talking like it was the best thing in the world. Like there was nothing more beautiful than finding your Âme soeur and living with them. And that’s when Chanyeol’s obsession began. Because his fathers did look like they were everything to each other, and that’s what Chanyeol wanted. A partner, a lover, a best friend. His Dads were his models. They loved each other since they were pre middle schooler, and nothing has changed. And Chanyeol knew that it was the mark. He knew that it was because they were meant to be together. 

 

The mark on his forearm wasn't too big, nor too small. It was a black mark, and it did not really represent anything that Chanyeol has seen before. It would make sense, when he would find his Âme soeur, but until then Chanyeol would be in the dark, and that wasn't really that big of a deal for him. He didn't really care about what the mark could be representing, but he did care about the person who was sporting it. There wasn't an actual day when Chanyeol wouldn't think about them, his Âme soeur. 

 

In all honesty, Chanyeol was a bit scared finding out who he was meant to be with, because even though he wanted this for as long as he could remember, it would be something entirely new, and he wasn’t sure he was going to be good enough.

But the boy wanted to. Oh, how he wanted to. Meet the one, and be with them. Laughing, crying, screaming, loving. Everything, and even more.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Chapter Text

 

-

 

 

" What do you mean ‘I will need a costume’ ? " Chanyeol asked, looking at the guy sitting in front of him like he's grown a second head.

 

Jongdae was a great friend of him. Of them. They met during Chanyeol’s first year in high school, and they hit it off right away. When Jongin arrived the year after, Jongdae and him were already pretty close, thanks to the innumerable amount of times Jongdae came to Chanyeol’s place. 

  

" Well, Chanyeollie, it’s called a costume party, so I think that pretty much sums it up, you know ? " Jongdae put on a smug face while Minseok, his boyfriend, offered him his water bottle. 

 

" That doesn't make any sense. We litteraly just started the year, why would you throw a costume party ? " Chanyeol kept wondering why it was that of all people, his friends had to be the weird ones from school. 

 

" Your face doesn’t make any sense and no one is judging you for that " 

 

Ouch, this one hurts. 

The giant looked at his friend, silently trying to think of a come back, but it seemed like his brain wasn't in the mood for coming up with anything. (Later on, as he was lying in his bed, trying to sleep, he would hate himself for not saying anything, because goddammit " No but everyone is judging your for being stupid " was just there and he wasn't capable of thinking of it at the right time.) 

  

" Be nice with your friend, he could burn you down Dae. " 

  

Chanyeol smiled, thanking Minseok for trying to help him, and kept on eating his sandwich.

 

" And I could electrify his ass, who cares "

 

" I very much care, thank you " Says Chanyeol, looking offended by his friend’s words.

 

" Do not count on me to sooth your burns the day Chanyeol decides to give you a piece of his mind " The senior stood up, patting his boyfriend's shoulder and walked away, to the trashcan. 

 

" And he calls himself my Âme Soeur. " Jongdae mumbled and took a gulp of water.

 

" Guys " Jongin called them, sitting his tray on the table and throwing his bag on the floor, next to his best friend’s feet. " Have you heard ? "

 

" Your annoying voice ? We did yeah, much more than we needed to " The blond showed him his middle finger and his best friend smiled because Jongdae deserved it, for being a little shit. But still, he smiled and asked. " What is it this time ? "

 

" A new student will be arriving tomorrow " 

 

" You make it sound like it’s such a big deal " The giant answered. 

 

" He's a healer. " 

 

And that alone was enough to make them shut up. They were used to see people with all kind of powers, but healing was rarely sported by anyone. One of those great powers that kind of disappeared as time passed by. 

  

" What’s the gossip ? " Came Minseok’s voice, and they looked at him, sitting back down next to his boyfriend. 

 

" Just a new guy arriving tomorrow, a healer. " Jongin said again, getting a bite of his sandwich.

 

" Wow pretty cool. "

 

" Not as cool as my party though  " Jongdae loved having all of the attention to himself.

 

" Oh god, please, Jongin, tell him it makes no sense having a costume party in the middle of February ! " Chanyeol begged his best friend and the blond shrugged. 

 

" I think it’s cool, we'll have fun " 

 

" Actually Chanyeol, in France, and in a whole lot of other country as well, in February they do celebrate carnival, and they wear masks and costumes. I mean, I’m pretty sure you’ve heard of Rio’s carnival. Everyone has heard of it. It’s a pretty big deal in fact. "

 

" Thank you very much Min’. " Jongdae smiled, pretty proud of his boyfriend’s knowledge. " So now, enough of you being a giant pain in my ass " Jongdae decided it was best to ignore Jongin’s comment about Minseok being the literal pain in his ass " What are you gonna wear ? "

 

" How the fuck should I know ? " Chanyeol pouted. " I literally just found out that I'm gonna need a costume, and the party’s at the end of the week. "

 

" Come on, you probably already had an idea for next Halloween, I’m pretty sure you know what to wear to my party. " His lips turned into another smile, and Chanyeol rolled his eyes.

 

As Jongin was going on and on about various costumes ideas (some of them Chanyeol couldn’t even understand the reference), you could suddenly see Jongdae’s mark starting to glow, just where his hand meets his wrist, and that’s how their friends knew that Minseok and him were holding hands under the table. 

 

It worked in a very mysterious way, their marks. They knew little about it.

They knew, for example, that most of the times, the mark would be found between the tip of the fingers, and the elbow. 

 

Chanyeol’s, Jongin’s and Minseok’s marks were on their forearm. A little black curve, resting peacefully under their skin, awaiting to come to life.

 

For some others, like Jongdae or even Chanyeol’s dad, the black mysterious spot was on their wrist,  moving with every drift of the hand.

 

It was a pretty rare sight to see the mark anywhere else, but, throughout history, it did happen. They heard about people who could cover their mark with just a t-shirt, the black curve resting just above their heart. Or that one guy, from Africa, his mark hiding behind his ear. 

 

Those were rare cases. It did not happen a lot, but it would be a lie to say that it never happened.

 

The thing is; there was always something. From the very beginning ’til the absolute end. Through the history, no one ever heard of someone being born without a mark. That was a fact that everyone knew. 

 

No matter where on the planet, no matter how small, how poor, how different. Everyone was meant to be with someone else. Everyone had his own, personal Âme Soeur. Their plus one, their special someone. The person who would make their mark glow. 

 

Right now, Jongdae’s mark was glowing under Chanyeol’s eyes, and that alone meant that Minseok’s mark was glowing as well. Just a touch of their skin, and the little black curve came to life. 

 

The senior offered a smile to Chanyeol, knowing how much he wanted that glow for himself, and then looked over the blond who was still talking about costumes for the party,  with his boyfriend. 

 

 

 

It was almost 10pm when Jongin suddenly appeared into Chanyeol’s room, once again using his teleportation’s power. The taller looked at him from head to toe, before bending down and finishing to tie his shoelaces. 

 

Chanyeol, after thinking about it for a while, finally decided to go as The Joker from DC. He knew it was a safe choice, anyone who wasn’t leaving under a rock knew the character, and he wouldn’t have to explain who he was all night long. He was actually one of Chanyeol’s favorite villain as well, and he honestly thought he was rocking the green and grey hair.

  

" Did you just happen to have a Joker kind of suit lying around in your closet or what ? " Jongin asked, looking at Chanyeol’s choice of clothes. 

 

" What if I did ? " He asked, standing up, eyeing the way his best friend’s chose to be the famous David Bowie for a night, red and blue lightning striking down his face. It was a pretty simple costume honestly, but as always, it fitted Jongin pretty well. It reminded Chanyeol of the poster of the same guy hanging in Jongin’s bedroom, above his bed. It was kind of weird to see Jongin with his hair darker than usual, he was blond for such a long time that Chanyeol almost forgot how the guy looked like with brown hair, but as everything else, it suited him. The color would be gone tomorrow anyway, he thought. 

 

" You’re a dork, Chanyeol. " 

 

" Well, maybe the dork should just stay here ? You know, I’ve got my Tumblr tab ready to be explored. "

 

" Nope. No. It’s okay, you’re just fine, let’s go ! " Jongin came closer, grabbing his best friend’s wrist, and before Chanyeol could say anything, they already were in front of Jongdae’s house. 

 

"  You could have at least let me bring a coat you know, just for the sake of me not freezing my ass to death "

 

" Should I remind you you’re a walking fireplace ? " Jongin let go of his wrist, and together they went in. 

 

 

 

 

The music was loud, and Chanyeol wasn’t particularly fond of it, but it did seem like everyone was having a great time. He could see in the corner of his eyes, some people he knew from school, and some others he’s seen before, in another one of Jongdae’s party. The room was full of colors, with all the different costumes and masks, and it was pretty cool honestly, not that he would ever admit it. 

 

Jongin was heading straight to the kitchen, probably to grab a drink, and Chanyeol followed him. He wasn’t going to drink any alcohol, not after what happened the last time he drank, but he was kind of thirsty, like every time Jongin used his power on him. 

 

Stepping foot in the kitchen, he looked around him, pouring himself a glass of juice and looking for the host. 

 

 

" Heeeey, Park Fucking Chanyeol, it’s been months since I’ve seen you in one of those parties ! "

 

 Coming in, as unbearable as ever, Wu Yi Fan was holding onto his cup, and the two friends did not have any doubt about what was in there. He didn’t really make an effort to fit in, if we were all absolutely honest. The tall guy kind of threw on his basketball shirt with a pair a black shorts to play the part, but that was about it. This, was the Wu Yi Fan they could see at school every day, for practices, and for the big matches that the school’s team was, more often than not, winning. 

 

" Actually Yi Fan, you saw me two weeks ago and you said the exact same thing "

 

" Are you sure it was me Dude ? " Yi Fan seemed pretty perplexed, but that wasn’t anything new, they were used to him being so drunk that he barely ever remembered a thing. 

 

" Pretty sure yeah " 

 

Chanyeol offered him a smile and Jongin engaged himself in a conversation with the other one. Chanyeol and Yi Fan were more acquaintances than friends, and they never really had any connection. Jongin, on the other hand, seemed like he enjoyed being in his company, so Chanyeol left him there and went looking for Jongdae. 

 

 

 

 

He found his friend after fifteen minutes of intense research, who had him realized that most of the girls were dressed as Harley Quinn and wanted a picture with him for the sake of reliving the ‘amazing’ couple they once saw in a movie. He wasn’t the kind of guy that loved being the center of the attention, in opposition as Jongdae, so he politely refused and decided to go sit in a corner and wait for the night to end. 

 

Yeah, Chanyeol wasn’t that much of a social butterfly. His ideal Saturday night would have him on his bed, binge watching a TV Show or going through his Tumblr feed. So much for finding his Âme Soeur. Jongin was always the one pulling him out of his comfort zone and without him, Chanyeol would probably never leave his room. It’s not that he wasn’t comfortable with people. He was actually a pretty funny guy and he liked being around his friends and even sometimes around people he didn’t know. It was just that being at a party was always kind of a nightmare to him. Chanyeol could easily socialized, but the vibe around him wasn’t his thing. The music was far from what he would listen, and he hated having to scream to be heard. 

 

There was, maybe, also the fact that whenever he was with Jongin, everyone around would focus on his best friend. He was the handsome one, and Chanyeol, no matter how interesting he was, would always be left out, even though Jongin would try really hard to pull him in. People liked beautiful people. Chanyeol wasn’t particularly ugly, but he wasn’t particularly handsome either. Chanyeol was pretty basic. 

 

When his eyes fell on Jongdae, the small guy was already trying to grossly make out with his boyfriend. Minseok was having none of it, and with a flick at his lover’s forehead, he successfully made him stop. 

 

Chanyeol smiled and decided to abandon his decision to sit in the corner to join the couple. The older was standing out a lot with his bright orange hair. His face was covered in scars and he had a fake knife in his hand, which he used to poke Jongdae’s stomach when the guy started to come too close once again. He was wearing a dark blue overall with a striped black and red sweater, and even though he was supposed to be scary, Chanyeol couldn’t help but find him kind of cute. 

 

Jongdae was sporting a lightning scar on his forehead, round glasses on the tip of his nose, and a Gryffindor robe. His wand was in his right hand and he flicked it with a drift of his wrist to push the fake knife away. The tie around his neck was a bit lose, and Minseok decided to straighten it, smiling up at Chanyeol.

 

" Nice make up " The senior was always one to compliment Chanyeol. The taller never really knew how to react to it, so he just decided to smile and return it.

 

" Yours’ good too " Minseok thanked him and looked at his boyfriend, his arms inside the younger’s robe, comfortably resting around his waist. 

 

" Nice to see that you came " Jongdae was genuinely happy " Gotta love the work you put into that " He wasn’t only referring of his make up, but also of his clothes, and Chanyeol knew, at the sound of his voice, that he wasn’t actually that surprised to see that Chanyeol worked on his costume. Well, you gotta say, the tall guy loved himself a good cosplay. (Like Jongin said; he was a bit of a dork, but that’s what made him so lovable) " Where’s Jongin ? " 

 

" Last time I saw him he was talking with Yi Fan in the kitchen. "

 

" I see. Come on, tell me you’re gonna dance tonight ? "

 

" I wasn’t planning on doing that in fact. "

 

" Yeah, I know what you were planning. Sitting all by yourself and wait until you can finally go home. That’s not what a party is about Chanyeol, so move your ass, grab yourself a drink and enjoy your youth ! " The taller knew that Jongdae was only saying that for his own good, but really, he kind of hated it.

 

" Leave the guy alone Dae, you know he’s not that fond of partying. At least he came, you gotta give him credit for that " Minseok smiled up to Chanyeol. " Try to have fun ok ? "

 

" I always have fun when I’m with you guys. Well, at least when I’m with Minseok hyung. "  Jongdae grunted. 

 

" One day I’m gonna kick your ass Park. "

 

" That’s because you’re too small to punch me in the face " 

  

Chanyeol was pretty proud of himself with that one, it wasn’t everyday that he could shut Jongdae up. 

 

 

  

It was around midnight when Chanyeol asked Jongin to zap him home. His giant of a best friend tapped him on the shoulder, and without a word, Jongin already knew what the guy wanted. After a mildly wild debate, the tall guy reluctantly accepted to stay a bit longer, and just for good measure, decided to leave Jongin alone.  

 

Jongin wasn’t having that much fun. It was a good party, he couldn’t deny it, but just as much as he loved partying, he also loved being around people who would take his mind far away from what his life was. Chanyeol was good at that, and he would lie if he said that from time to time Jongdae and Minseok weren’t pretty damn good at it as well. But tonight, he wasn’t feeling it.

 

Still, he decided to stay because no matter how much his best friend hated to be here, he also knew that Chanyeol needed it. He needed to be around people and he needed to get out of his comfort zone. He wasn’t going to find his Âme Soeur while lying in his bed, eating potato chips, and fanboying over his favorite TV Shows characters (they all fucking knew that Castiel and Dean were meant to be, for God’s sake). 

 

Jongin was smiling, as always, and everyone around him seemed to find that endearing. He was kind of thankful for the fact that they were all a bit blinded by his lies, but again, maybe they wanted to be blind. People never really want a real answer when they ask if you’re ok. They hope you say yes, smile, and they nod while feeling better about themselves because they did give you attention. 

 

He was kind of bored, seeing all those faces smiling up to him. They never really tried to know him. Jongin was a popular guy, with handsome features, and he was giving a lot of his person (literally), people were always trying to get in his good side (read; in his pants), and maybe, Jongin was using that for his own amusement (more like; he wanted to think about anything else than real life) but sometimes it was just a bit too much, and even himself was tired of it. 

 

He grabbed himself another drink and left the kitchen, to go anywhere, as long as those two girls that were almost grinding themselves against him all night long weren’t there. He knew he would find Chanyeol sooner than later, but he thought that maybe, it was a good idea to leave him alone for some time. The guy wouldn’t meet anyone new if they were together all the time, they would just talk among themselves and that would be it. 

 

He started going upstairs, where there would be less people. It probably wasn’t the best idea, really, because that would also mean less music, and more thinking, but right now he didn’t want to be around any of those people. Opening a door that would lead him to Jongdae’s room, he went to turn on the light and looked around him. The room was familiar, it wasn’t the first he came in here, and it probably wasn’t the last either. 

 

He heard people talking in the hallway, the door opened, and he honestly thought it was the two girls from before, thus, he zapped himself inside the closet. It’s not like he wasn’t capable of telling them off, it’s just that he didn’t want to be bothered. He knew the kind of girls they were, and they wouldn’t leave it alone that easily. Still, teleporting himself inside the closet wasn’t exactly his best idea, he had the entire house to do so. 

  

" I mean, I know I shouldn’t say things like that, but he is fucking scary. " That was a guy’s voice but Jongin couldn’t recognize it. 

 

" Shh ! " His friend stayed silent for a few seconds, probably making sure no one would hear them. " Yeah, I know right ? Seriously, the guy’s already freaking scary as it is, what’s with the costume and all ? "

 

" Well.. It is a costume party.. " A third voice answered them.

 

" Still, when you know everyone’s afraid of you, you make an effort to look less scary. " That was the first guy.

 

" Or maybe we should just try to talk to him ? It’s not because everyone thinks he’s scary that he’s actually a monster, you know ? "

 

Jongin rolled his eyes, the conversation was stupid and he couldn’t care less about their opinion. They never tried to really know anyone, so he doubted that they would try for no matter who they were talking about. He zapped himself out of the closet, and wished with all his heart that the bathroom would be empty, or else he was in for some embarrassing situation. 

 

 

 

Chanyeol thought that going outside would be a good idea. He wanted some fresh air, and he wanted less music. Everything was way too loud inside, and he couldn’t stand it anymore. He sat on the edge of the pool, closing his eyes and breathing deeply. It was a bit chilly so he used his fire to warm him up. He could feel the power running through his veins and making itself at home. His body was feeling better already, and Chanyeol couldn’t be happier about the power he got. 

 

He created a small flame, on the tip of his index, and let it slide between his fingers, playing with it for a little while before letting it die in the palm of his hand. 

 

 

" Wow, that’s kind of cool " Chanyeol looked up to see a guy smiling down at him. He was wearing a sheep onesie over a pink shirt, and he was honestly kind of cute. 

 

" Ha, thank you " He smiled " Cute costume " 

 

" Yes ! I was going to wear the unicorn onesie but I thought I would keep it for a grander occasion ! " Chanyeol let out a little laugh, looking at the boy. " I like yours as well, your make up is really cool ! "

 

" Thank you " The brunet sat beside him without asking, and rolled up the onesie’s legs to put his feet in the water. 

 

" Haaaa, cold " Yes, we are in February, Chanyeol thought. " So, your power is fire ? "

 

" It is " 

 

" This is so cool. You might be able to do a lot of tricks with it right ?? "

 

" I can, I don’t do it often though.. One clumsy guy shouldn’t play with fire " The brunet laughed.

 

" Well, at least you can if you want. Mine isn’t really that fun. Useful, but no fun. " The guy smiled again, and he reminded Chanyeol of a little kid. " I’m Yixing, by the way, but you can call me Lay if you prefer " He’s Chinese, he thought. 

 

" I’m Chanyeol, and you can call me Chanyeol " Another laugh, and Yixing looked at him again. " What’s your power ? "

 

" Ha, well, I’m a healer " He offered him a sweet smile and Chanyeol tried not to look too surprised.

 

" You’re the new guy.. at school.. "

 

" That would be me " He scratched the back of his head, looking a bit embarrassed. 

 

" Being a healer might be amazing "

 

" I guess you could say that " Yixing stared into the water " I mean, at least I can help people, right ? " He smiled again.

 

" Yes, at least you can "

 

" Why aren’t you inside ? " Yixing looked at him, waiting for an answer, a sweet smile still on his lips, and Chanyeol couldn’t find it in himself to lie to him, not when he was looking so innocent. 

 

" I just don’t fit in that much " He saw something pass on Yixing’s face, but the smaller guy kept his smile in place. 

 

" You must be cold though "

 

" I don’t really have that problem " Chanyeol lifted his hand and put it on the guy’s shoulder, his warmth spreading through his back, and Yixing closed his eyes for a few seconds. 

 

" Oh my god, that is really an amazing power "

 

" Thank you, I like it too " A little laugh came out of both their mouths, and Chanyeol pulled his hand away, not wanting to be too touchy with someone he did not know. " Are you here alone ? You might not know a lot of people around here since you arrived this week "

 

" Ha, actually I’m here with my best friend. I lost him in the middle of the crowd while he was looking for the bathroom so I went out. I figured we would find each other again at any moment. "

 

" Your best friend is at our school ? "

 

" No, he’s Jongdae’s neighbor from down the street. He goes in a different school, well, for now " 

 

" Oh, I see " Chanyeol smiled. 

 

" What about you ? "

 

" I came here with my best friend as well, and Jongdae’s a close friend too " 

 

" That’s nice, where are they ? "

 

" I left when Jongin refused to take me home " He pouted, reminding himself of the debate he had with his best friend.

 

They kept talking for a bit. Getting to know each other without ever revealing too much. Yixing was a cute guy, and he was also kind of funny. His eyes were a bit off sometimes, like he wasn’t exactly living the moment, but it was okay, because he always asked again, if he didn’t hear what Chanyeol said. He was being careful not to let him think that he didn’t care, and Chanyeol was thankful for that. 

 

He was dying to touch his skin though. It felt like a vital need, pulling at the strings of his heart, and screaming in his head to do it. That was something Chanyeol had learned about himself when he was still a kid. He wasn’t able to meet someone, without thinking of his mark. Because what if ? What if he was the one ? What if, just by a touch of their skin, his mark started to glow ? 

 

He unconsciously slid his hand on his forearm, just where the black curve was hidden by the vest he was wearing, his fingers clutching around him. If Yixing saw him, he didn’t say anything and kept talking. About what, Chanyeol couldn’t tell. His mind was still on his mark, trying to think of a way to come up with the subject. It didn’t seem like anything was good enough. He couldn’t possibly tell Yixing that he wanted to touch him, because it would sound weird. He thought that he could maybe tell him the truth. Tell him how much this Âme Soeur thing was important to him and how much he needed to know if they were actually meant to be. Hell, the guy already walked to a tons of girls and boys to simply touch their skin at school. Pretending to fall or collide with them, just to know, just to be sure. That was probably a bit creepy, but that way Chanyeol was erasing all kind of doubts.  

 

So, here he was, mentally getting ready to ask Yixing, when a voice called out for his new friend. They both looked up to the pretty guy standing a few meters away. Yixing waved at him, and the guy came closer. 

 

" Ha, Yi’, I was looking everywhere for you ! " Chanyeol couldn’t help but smile as he saw how cute the guy was. A bunny sleeping mask was resting on top of his head, and there was a plaid covering his shoulders and the pajama he was wearing. Chanyeol felt the fresh air breathing against his cheek, and it reminded him of how cold it really was out there. Yixing was probably freezing.

 

" Sorry, I lost you in the crowd so I came out here and I made a new friend ! " The Chinese  guy offered Chanyeol a blinding smile, and the giant couldn’t stop himself from smiling back. A new friend, Yixing has said. Chanyeol was more than okay with that. 

 

" Hi " Chanyeol said.

 

" This is Chanyeol, he’s a friend of Jongdae "

 

" Oh, I see, nice to meet you, I’m Baekhyun " 

 

" He’s my best friend " Yixing started. " The one I told you about " 

 

" Yeah, I figured. " Chanyeol stoop up, greeting Baekhyun. 

 

" Yi’, I mean, you made a friend, that’s great and all, but you’re freezing your ass out there, why would you do that ? " The boy tightened the plaid around his shoulders, proving his point.

 

" Well, Chanyeol was very nice " The tall guy kind of felt embarrassed, knowing Yixing was staying just for him.

 

" Yeah, I get that, but still. Ugh, let’s get back inside, you’re gonna fall sick. Why would you even put your feet in the water ? " Yixing stoop up, laughing at his friend.

 

" I’m a healer, Baekhyun "

 

" That doesn’t mean you should run around practically naked. " Chanyeol smiled, hearing the concern in the guy’s voice. It felt like he was used to take care of Yixing, and that wasn’t that surprising, with the way the Chinese would be in his own world from time to time. 

 

" I’m not naked ! " He sounded offended, but he was still cute. 

 

" I’m sorry, it’s probably my fault, I did not realized it was that cold " Chanyeol nervously scratched the back of his neck, and Baekhyun looked at him perplexed, because how could he not realized it was freezing ? " I kinda used my fire to keep myself warm so.. "

 

" Oh, ah, yeah, okay.. " Baekhyun looked back at his best friend, trying to dry his feet to put his shoes back. " Well, he’d probably have been doing another stupid thing, so you know, at least he wasn’t by himself " He offered Chanyeol a smile and the giant stared at him for a few seconds. " Thanks for staying with him "

 

" My pleasure, really " 

 

" Park ! " They both turned their heads towards the voice, while Yixing was tying his shoelaces. " Jongin’s looking for you " Chanyeol whined a little. 

 

" Why ? "

 

" Because you said you wanted to go home ? " Jongdae looked at him like he was stupid. (Which is what he was probably thinking.)

 

" Yeah, like, two hours ago ! " A cat like smile appeared on his friend’s face and he came closer. 

 

" Didn’t know you would be so fond of my party Yeollie. " Chanyeol rolled his eyes. " I’ve seen you met Baekhyun and Yixing "

 

" You didn’t tell me you knew the new guy " Chanyeol said.

 

" I did not know him, I mean, I barely know Baekhyun, really. He was my neighbor like 6 years ago but then his family moved at the end of the street so we don’t see each other that much "

 

" Jongdae usually pays me a visit when he’s bored, but it seems like he’s got all the distractions he needs recently " Baekhyun smirked, looking at Jongdae.

 

" What can you say, Minseok knows some really good ways to pass the time " He wiggled his eyebrows and Chanyeol faked a gag. 

 

" Not sure Hyung would like to hear you say things like this "

 

" Just saying it like it is " Jongdae winked at his friend and looked at Yixing. " It’s nice to meet you, new guy "

 

" I’m Yixing, but you can call me Lay " The Chinese offered him a smile, bowing down a little. 

 

" I’m Jongdae, you can come to me if you need anything " He smiled.

 

" That’s so very nice of you ! " Yixing sounded kind of amazed, the guy really was cute, the giant thought.

 

" Anyway, DumbYeol, Jongin’s still looking for you everywhere "

 

" Good for him. I’m staying, I’ve found a new friend. And he’s nicer than him. " Jongdae rolled his eyes at his childish act, but smiled anyway.

 

" You go tell him that, he looked kind of pissed honestly "

 

" What ? Why ? What happened ? " Chanyeol frowned.

 

" No idea. Heard about some guy spilling his drink on him but that’s all. "  

 

" Huh.. I should probably find him "

 

Chanyeol looked at the three guys around him. Jongdae was nodding, understanding perfectly why Chanyeol was suddenly so tense. Jongin was rarely pissed off, it did sound a bit weird that he would be mad for something so trivial as someone spilling their drink on him. Then again, if Jongin was in one of those internal turmoil he sometimes had, it would make sense. 

 

Yixing was looking at him with a peaceful smile on his face, staying still and silent. The guy looked cute, but once again, it seemed like he wasn’t really there. It was just a tiny bit weird, but Chanyeol didn’t really pay attention to that, Yixing has been nothing else but kind with him.

 

The last one, Baekhyun, was looking at the pool, nodding absently. Once he felt Chanyeol’s prying eyes on him, he turned his head back and they stared at each other for a few seconds. There was something off about the guy, but Chanyeol couldn’t exactly say what. He didn’t know him, and they barely talked, but it felt like something wasn’t right. The small guy offered him a smile anyway, and waved a little, his fist still clutching around the plaid. 

  

" Where is he ? "

 

" I told him to grab a t-shirt in my room while I was looking for you "

 

" Ok. Well, Yixing, Baekhyun, it was really nice meeting you. I hope we’ll see each other soon " 

 

He smiled before heading back inside, and walking right to the stairs. He knew the house by heart. He’s been there for days at a time, working on school’s project, or playing video games instead of doing his homework. When he reached Jongdae’s room, he didn’t bother knocking, opening the door to find Jongin sitting on the bed, his shirt and tie lying down beside him, and a black t-shirt stolen from Jongdae’s closet covering his chest. His hands were in his hair, and his eyes were closed. Chanyeol walked closer slowly, and Jongin looked up.

 

" Took you long enough " 

 

" Sorry about that, I was chatting with someone " Jongin’s eyebrow went up, and he tilted his head a little.

 

" You made a new friend ? " 

 

" Let’s say I made a new acquaintance. What about you ? Made a new enemy ? " Jongin snorted and rolled his eyes.

 

" Just some guy who’s not capable of holding his cup straight. " Chanyeol sat beside him. "  No big deal. "

 

" If you say so. " The giant knew when to keep talking and when to stop. At the sound of Jongin’s voice, he knew that his best friend did not want to talk about it. Or about anything that would remotely remind him of the way he was feeling. So Chanyeol let the conversation drift away from Jongin, and closer to him.

 

" New friend huh ? "

 

" The new guy from school, his name’s Yixing "

 

" Glow ? " A little smile found his way on Chanyeol’s face, sometimes Jongin knew him better than himself.

 

" Don’t know, couldn’t touch him. Or his best friend for that matter. "

 

" There were two of them ? Damn Chanyeol, you really overdid yourself tonight didn’t you ? " There was a proud smile on Jongin’s face, and Chanyeol couldn’t feel happier to see it than right now. 

 

" What can I say, I gotta do what I gotta do ! " He winked, and Jongin looked at him.

 

" They came to you right ? "

 

" Yeah, Yixing totally did. I was sitting by myself by the pool. " Chanyeol deflated, a little, non-comical laugh coming out of him.  A hand was ruffling his hair and the giant looked at his best friend. 

 

" It’s ok dude, at least you didn’t come for nothing "

 

" At least, indeed " 

 

 

 

 

It was maybe the way Chanyeol was breathing peacefully beside him, meaning he was sleeping like a rock. Or maybe the fact that his head finally stopped throbbing badly. Maybe it was the air around, making him feel home, in a house he wasn’t supposed to live in. Maybe it was just the fact that this, here, the moment, and the place. All of that, was safe. Maybe it was just being under a duvet, warm and soft, his back resting against a comfy mattress, and his head against a fluffy pillow. No matter what it was, it just felt right. So right that everything went wrong. His eyes starting to fill with tears and his heart starting to beat wildly against his chest. And he cried. He let it go. The silence was filled with his sobs and Chanyeol’s breathing. Jongin let the tears drown his face, and the thoughts pile up in his head. It wasn’t new, and it wasn’t surprising. It was just usual. Painfully usual. 

 

He buried his face in the crook of his elbow, his lungs hardly keeping up. He wasn’t expecting long fingers to slide across his palm, but he welcomed the warmness instantly and tightened his hand around his best friend’s. Chanyeol didn’t say a word, but Jongin felt it, the way he was spreading his warmth around him, making him feel life everything was going to be okay. And maybe it was. But Jongin couldn’t see it for now.  

 

 

 

 

 

 

I thought we all needed a bit of a smiling Jongin. (well, I did, anyway.)

 

 

 

 

 

 

Chapter Text

 

 

 

-

 

The next Monday came pretty quick, maybe because Jongin and Chanyeol spent the entire weekend together. Time used to fly real slow when they didn’t know each other. Well, at least, that’s what Chanyeol thinks he can remember from his short two years of life without Jongin by his side. 

 

The giant would always be thankful for the day his parents decided to hold a playdate at their house for his sister’s friends to come and play with her. Yura had a lot of friends, one of them being Jongin’s older sister. That day, she came in, holding hands with her grandmother, before letting it go and running towards Yura, screaming like the 5 years old she was. Chanyeol remembers turning his head at the cries coming out of the little boy being held by his grandmother, face red and drowned by his tears, looking at his big sister leaving him to play with someone else. The old lady tried to calm him down, shushing him and gently rubbing his back, but the toddler didn’t seem to care. He kept crying until his grandmother finally decided to put him down and Chanyeol gave him the plush toy he loved so much. Jongin refused to let it go for the rest of the day, and Chanyeol didn’t really seem to care, as long as the toddler wasn’t crying anymore. That plush was now resting on top of Jongin’s drawers, like it was still taking care of him after all those years.

 

The two friends had a silent accord not to talk about what happened on the night of the party. They had woken up, hand wrapped around the other’s and Jongin’s eyes puffy and red from all the crying, but they didn’t mention it. Chanyeol simply smiled to him, silently implying that it was okay, and he was out the room a few minutes later, when his stomach was screaming at him to go get some food. The rest of the day was full of laughters, the boys playing video games and talking about nothing and everything, like nothing ever happened. Jongin was thankful for that. 

 

As Sunday came by, the rain was pouring over the city. There wasn’t much to do, so when Chanyeol woke up before Jongin, he decided to watch a TV Show. When his best friend finally opened up his eyes, the giant was grossly crying over the death of one of his favorite character, and Jongin made fun of him for a little while, before deciding to cheer him up. They went out for ice cream, because they felt like it, no matter how hard the rain was drenching them. 

 

Chanyeol was now currently sitting in the library, balancing a pencil on the tip of his finger instead of doing his researches for the project his French teacher gave them the week prior. He wasn’t feeling like working on it, which was a bad idea, obviously, but he didn’t seem to care as he was staring at his pencil like it knew something that the teenager did not. 

 

Chanyeol could hear an angry sigh coming from behind him when the pencil fell on the table once again, and he decided that maybe, it wasn’t the best idea. He looked around him, kind of jealous of all the people working so easily on their homework, but then again, he made a choice not to do anything, so he couldn’t really complain (except maybe for the fact that he never asked to be lazy, lazy chose him). Something his parents never really understood was how much time Chanyeol would take to talk about his TV Shows’ theories and defending his favorite characters, but how little he would take to do anything school related. Few people understood him, Chanyeol thought, except for the ones on Tumblr. Those people just knew. 

 

" Chanyeol ! " 

 

The giant lifted his head, his eyes instantly meeting a soft smile. Yixing was waving at him, his dimple showing up on his cheek, and Chanyeol smiled back. He silently offered him to take place at his table, way too happy to have a distraction. 

 

" Thank you " The guy was now sitting down in front of him. " I almost did not recognize you without your make up ! " Lucky for him, Chanyeol’s ears popped out of his hair and that alone was a good indication of who he was. Of course, Yixing wasn’t going to say anything about it, some people were really sensitive when it came to their physical apparence. " I’m happy to see you again ! "

 

" Yeah, it’s nice " Yixing opened his bag and pulled out a notebook, Chanyeol pouted at the sight. " What brings you here ? "

 

" I thought that maybe I should do my homework here.. I tend to be easily distracted at home " He looked a bit embarrassed, scratching the back of his head.

 

" I know the feel.. "

 

" What about you ? "

 

" I’m working on my French project. Well, kinda.. I’m trying.. Yeah okay, I’m not doing anything. " Chanyeol could hear a soft chuckle coming from Yixing and it made him smile.

 

" Maybe you should really work on it ? " 

 

" I knoooow, it’s just.. soooo boring you know ? I don’t get it. " 

 

" Don’t like French ? " 

 

" More like I don’t like homework ? "

 

" Maybe you should ask for someone to help you with that then ? "

 

" Ha, well, I don’t want to bother anyone, I’ll do it anyway, probably the night before but I will do it " 

 

" It’s not really healthy hm ? " Chanyeol shrugs. There were a lot of his habits that weren’t healthy. 

 

" What are you working on ? "

 

" Math ! It’s so hard though ! Why are we even studying this ! " 

 

" Meh, you got me there buddy. " Yixing sighed, his eyes running on his notes, trying to make any sense of the numbers, but it didn’t seem to work. " Who’s your teacher ? "

 

" Mr.Cho.. But they started to learn that chapter before I even arrived, I missed half of the lessons, that’s not fair ! "

 

" Isn’t the teacher supposed to give you the notes ? "

 

" He told me to ask to Junmyeon " Yixing seemed a bit lost, the name sounding foreign in his mouth.

 

" Of course he did " Chanyeol chuckled. He knew Mr.Cho personally, he was one of his parents’ best friend. He was used to call him Uncle Kyuhyun before he started going to high school. Now it just seemed a bit weird to call him Uncle after seeing him in the school’s corridors, so he stuck to Kyuhyun. Kyuhyun has always been a bit on the lazy side if you asked Chanyeol, but he was really good at what he was doing. " Why didn’t you ask Junmyeon then ? " Yixing was hesitating, Chanyeol could see it because he was glancing sideway, his fingers playing with the edge of the notebook. 

 

" I just.. I don’t know who it is.. " Chanyeol’s laughter could be heard from afar, sounding way too loud in the middle of the library, causing people to glare at him like he was some kind of crazy guy they would love to get rid of (and maybe they did want to). 

 

" Ha, Yixing hyung ! " He was still laughing, his hand clapping on his knee.

 

" That is not funny ! "

 

" Yeah, yeah, I’m sorry " He knew it wasn’t funny. Maybe being bored was indeed making him crazy. More than he already was, that is. " Junmyeon is the school president " He smiled to give him some kind of comfort. 

 

" School president ? " He tilted his head, a bit confused.

 

" Yes, if you want I can introduce you to him at lunch "

 

" Oh, you know him ? " He suddenly reminded Chanyeol of an overly excited puppy, with his eyes shining like he just discovered the answer to the universe. Which wasn’t 42.

 

" He’s actually well known around here, obviously, he runs the student council for two years now. Anyway, he’s also Minseok’s cousin, so I do know him "

 

" Can you really introduce us ?? " 

 

" Of course, " Chanyeol smiled " that is, if you wanna eat with us at lunch "

 

" That would be a pleasure ! " 

 

 

 

 

Jongdae was already eating like he hasn’t been fed for days when Jongin sat down at his table. The blond guy loved Monday lunch ‘cause it meant chicken, and chicken was Jongin’s first love, the one that would probably last forever, so it was no surprise when Jongdae glanced at his tray and saw that his plate was so full that his lunch barely fit on it. 

The blond guy waved at him before standing up again and leaving him alone. Jongdae shrugged, he was used to Jongin’s weird antics and it never really bothered him anyway. He knew the guy was always busy, his phone in his hand and his head anywhere else. The truth is Jongdae was actually surprised when Jongin wasn’t busy, because it felt weird to know that the guy didn’t have anything in mind. It happened sometimes, but he could never get used to it. 

He could see the guy walking away, his phone stuck to his ear, and he saw the collision coming before it even happened. Jongin wasn’t paying attention to his surroundings and the little guy in front of him was looking at the opposite direction when his tray found itself flat down on Jongin’s stomach. Jongdae wanted to laugh, until he saw Jongin’s expression when he looked up at the guy. He stood up, joining him, just in case someone needed to do something. 

 

" Are you fucking kidding me ?! " Jongin was pissed. His uniform was covered in sauce, his phone fell down and the screen was now probably cracked, he could feel his shirt sticking to his chest, and for the love of God, what was wrong with that guy and spilling things on him ?! 

 

" I’m sorry " Came the other guy’s voice, " I wasn’t looking where I was going.. " 

 

" Aren’t you capable of keeping things in your hands you fucking idiot ?! " 

 

" Jongin, calm down " Jongdae frowned. His friend was overreacting, that was just weird.

 

" I said I was sorry " The smaller looked up at him, his round eyes looking at Jongin's face in a cold stare. " No need to be like this. "

 

" Yeah, you said you were sorry too when you fucking spilled your entire glass on me last time ! If you can’t hold things properly you should probably get help from someone, I’m tired of being at the end of your disability ! "

 

" Can you calm the fuck down Jongin ? " Jongdae said again. Like the other guy said, there was no need to act like uncivilized morons just for that. 

 

" Do I need to remind you that you were the one popping out of nowhere and that’s why I did spill my glass on you ? " 

 

Jongin knew he was right, he was constantly zapping himself out of a room to appear anywhere else when he felt like he couldn't stand the people around him anymore. He did pop out in front of the little guy in the middle of the corridor leading to Jongdae’s kitchen. The incident didn’t go well with his bad mood. He was actually kind of (totally) responsible for what happened on Saturday night. But knowing was one thing. Admitting it was completely different. Why he felt like acting as a jerk with this guy was something beyond his understanding, or so he liked to pretend that it was, even though deep down, he just knew it had to do with the fact that their little confrontation was the only thing that kept his mind off of anything remotely painful during the party. He was kind of thankful for that, he now knew that it was something that could help him, something that he would need. He needed to act like a jerk, just in case his mind was being painful again. Jongin was being selfish and stupid, and the guy in front of him didn't seem like he was going to let the blonde treat him like a piece of garbage. All in all, it was a pretty good deal, in Jongin's opinion. In other’s eyes, he probably was just being a big old jerk. 

 

" Or maybe you just aren't capable of using your brain properly to do basic things like holding a cup. " 

 

Jongdae frowned again, his friend was being a little bitch. Jongin was honestly a really nice guy, always there to help and make you smile, so seeing him act like this wasn’t a common thing. He couldn’t understand what was going on. That guy wasn’t his friend, and that was baffling. He heard a gasp coming from behind them though, and that’s when he started to pay attention to the silence filling up the cafeteria. All eyes were on them, looking at the scene like something terrible could happen at any moment. People were holding their breaths, whispering among them, and looking at Jongin with concern. That was a pretty rare thing, to see all the students so quiet. The cafeteria was always full of laughters and voices bouncing up against the walls. Being there too long would sometimes give Jongdae a headache (even though he probably was one of the loudest in there). He couldn’t actually understand why they were all acting weird so suddenly. Jongin, and all the people looking at them. 

He took a proper look at the little guy. Huge eyes, black hair, full lips and a glare. Jongdae had seen him before, obviously. He probably met in him in the hallways or something, but he couldn’t put a name on that face. 

 

" At least I have a brain. " He finally answered, looking straight into Jongin’s eyes and never leaving them. 

 

" A pea sized one yeah. " Jongin didn’t seem like he was going to back out anytime soon. Jongdae sighed. 

 

" What’s going on here ? " Jongdae and the little guy looked up to see Junmyeon staring at Jongin’s shirt, figuring out by himself what could have possibly happened. It wasn’t that big of a mystery, really. 

 

" Hi Jun ! " Jongdae smiled. Finally seeing a friendly face. " Our little friend here wasn’t looking where he was going and the other one there was too busy with his phone. The inevitable happened, and bam, here we are. " Junmyeon nodded. 

 

" Jongin, you should go get changed " The blonde guy stepped back a little. He had to admit that Junmyeon being here actually made him realize what he was doing. " You’ll eat after. Do you need clothes ? " He answered by a silent no and with one last look at the dark haired, the younger grabbed his phone from the floor and left the cafeteria, not bothering to check on his screen. " Is everything okay, Kyungsoo ? " 

 

Kyungsoo nodded, his black hair bouncing on top of his head and Jongdae kind of wanted to face palm his stupid brain at the moment. Of course, he was the guy. From all the whispers and the gasps, all the stares, and the fear. He couldn’t even understand how he did not get it. Kyungsoo. The guy who could smash a table with just the palm of his hand. Who could cause an earthquake by stomping his foot. Kyungsoo, the talk of the entire school. There were no surprises in the fact that everyone was looking at them like something could happen. It was no wonder why they were all looking at Jongin with concern when in reality the younger was the one acting like a jerk. If Kyungsoo was pissed, he could put the guy down just by flicking his forehead. 

Jongdae didn’t know the guy on a personal level, heck, this was the first time he could put a face on his name. He wasn’t one to judge without knowing so he never really paid attention to all of the rumors, but if you were in this school, you knew there wasn’t a single day without someone talking about the Do Kyungsoo. He was actually surprised to see what the infamous kid looked like. When you hear about super strength, your brain is bound to imagine a really big and tall guy. Someone well built that could break you in half. Kyungsoo could actually break anyone in more than two if he wanted to (well, that’s what the people whispered in the hallways, Jongdae actually never saw anything happened) but he looked nothing like it. Kyungsoo was a small guy, with small hands and appart from his eyes, there wasn’t a single thing that was remotely scary in him. Even less scary when the little guy decided to gather his tray and everything from the floor, never looking at anyone, not even Junmyeon when the school president tried to help him. Kyungsoo just gently pushed his hands away before standing up again and leaving the cafeteria, never looking back. 

Jongdae wondered for a short moment how Kyungsoo was going to eat, but the question faded out pretty quick as the cafeteria was once again filled with voices from all over the place. His boyfriend’s cousin offered him a smile before leaving him there to grab his own food. Jongdae went back to his table, grabbed his chopsticks and resumed his eating, waiting for his friends to join him. 

 

 

 

 

Yixing was following Chanyeol like a puppy. He was really excited at the thought of eating with his new friend. He’d been there for a week now, and even though people were nice with him, it felt good to know that someone actually wanted to eat with him, and not just had to deal with the fact that he would sit at their table. When the giant in front of him finally stopped, Yixing almost crashed against his back but managed to stop before any catastrophe happened. Chanyeol greeted his friend, Jongdae, Yixing remembered, before sitting down, inviting the Chinese guy to do the same. 

 

" It’s good to see you again Yixing " Jongdae smiled and Yixing returned the favor.

 

" Where’s Jongin ? " Chanyeol was surprised not to see his best friend. There was a tray full of chicken waiting for him at the table, and Jongin not being there, eating like he hasn’t for days, was pretty weird. On a Monday, the cafeteria was Jongin’s favorite place in the whole wide world. He heard Jongdae sigh, and he looked up to him, tilting his head. Yixing almost cooed at the giant’s cuteness.

 

" Mister too-cool-for-school is being a weird ass shit man. " Chanyeol frowned, getting even more confused.

 

" A weird a.. What ? Can you be a bit more clearer please ? "

 

" He was heading to God knows where, busy on his phone so he wasn’t really paying attention to his surroundings, Do Kyungsoo wasn’t looking where he was going either. Kyungsoo’s tray, Jongin’s stomach, do you see where I’m going with that ? "

 

" He spilled his tray on Jongin ? "

 

" That he did, my friend. But what’s weird is Jongin’s reaction to that. The guy was being a real jerk. Like, a mean ass jerk. Telling Kyungsoo that he couldn’t use his brain properly and that his brain was a really small one, much like yours, you know ? It wasn’t at all like him to act like this, I don’t know what’s going on with Jongin, but I think you should talk to him. "

 

" Jongin insulted Kyungsoo ?.. The Kyungsoo ? " 

 

" Yes he did. But no worry, the knight in shining armor that I am saved your best friend’s ass. " Yixing was starting to think that Jongdae had a weirdly strong obsession for the word ass. 

 

" And without lying, what happened ? " Chanyeol asked, not believing a word his friend was saying. 

 

" They were just talking to each other in that weird sexual tension kind of thing, and when Kyungsoo finally decided to kind of insult Jongin back, Jun’ arrived and he told Jongin to go get changed. After that Kyungsoo just gathered everything that fell down and he left the cafeteria without saying anything. Jongin should be back at any moment now. "

 

" Jongin getting mad for this kind of things is really weird.. "

 

" I know right ? From what I understood, Kyungsoo was the one spilling his drink on Jongin at the party, but it seemed like it was Jongin’s fault. Anyway, that was weird as fuck. Have you guys talk about what happened ? " 

 

" No, we haven’t. " Chanyeol didn’t want to talk about Jongin’s issues in front of Yixing. The guy was nice but he was still a stranger to them and even though he hoped they could become good friends, it wasn’t any of his business. Jongdae seemed to understand, and he dropped the subject, opting to talk about his party, asking if Yixing liked it. 

 

It didn’t take long for Yixing and Jongdae to become comfortable with each other. Jongdae was an open guy. He could talk to anything and anyone. Yixing was basically the same. They were really different on any other point, but at least they had that in common. 

Chanyeol was eating, thinking about Jongin and what was actually going on in his head, when his best friend finally arrived. The blond guy greeted Yixing with a small smile, sat down and started to eat like nothing ever happened. Chanyeol knew better than to talk about it there, in the middle of the cafeteria, and opted to keep it to himself until they’d get home. 

Yixing and Jongdae’s conversation got cut when Minseok arrived and kissed Jongdae, getting an eye roll from Jongin and a sigh from Chanyeol. Yixing smiled sweetly, finding them cute.

 

" How long have you been together ? " The Chinese was curious, they looked so comfortable around each other. 

 

" We’ve started dating like a year ago " Minseok answered, a smile on his face.

 

" But we’ve known each other for almost 7 years. " Jongdae added, grabbing Minseok’s water bottle. 

 

" Oh.. Are you.. Hum.. " Scratching the back of his head was an habit that Chanyeol was quick to learn about Yixing. The guy was always doing it when he was embarrassed, and it seemed like he got embarrassed a lot. 

 

" Ame Soeur ? " Minseok finished for him.

 

" Yeah.. " A little smile appeared on Yixing’s face, and Jongdae took a gulp of water, taking his sweet time to answer.

 

" We are " Jongdae pulled up his sleeve a little so that his wrist would appear, showing his glowing mark after intertwining his fingers with his boyfriend’s " We met in Elementary school and we knew we were Ame Soeur from almost day one. Minseok walked up to me after school while I was waiting for my parents to pick me up and he offered me a snack. "

 

" I actually knew we were Ame Soeur before him. There was that one time when we were sitting in the grand hall of the school, listening to the principal making his speech for the year ahead, and Jongdae was just in front of me. His back was facing me and I saw a leaf stuck on his collar so I wanted to take it off, and I accidentally touched his nape. My mark started to glow instantly and so I knew. "

 

" He didn’t say anything for three months, and then he came to me with a snack; like whaaaat ? "

 

" Didn’t it work ? " Yixing asked.

 

" It did. Jongdae would be friend with anyone bringing him food. Jongin and him are the same for this. "

 

" That is not true ! " Jongin pulled out his offended look and Chanyeol raised an eyebrow. 

 

" Dude, literally anyone could become your best friend just by offering you chicken ! " Chanyeol nodded at Jongdae’s statement, watching Jongin pouting like a kid while eating his chicken nuggets. " Anyway, I was hungry as hell so I did accept the offer with a big smile on my face and after that we kind of became best friends. "

 

" Why did it take so long for you to start dating ? " Yixing asked, tilting his head a little.

 

" I mean, we were kids. We didn’t really know what love meant and we didn’t want to date just because that’s what we were supposed to do you know ? When Jongdae found out we were Ame Soeur, we didn’t even talk about dating, it all just came naturally. We were not suddenly madly in love. We were friends, and it was perfect the way it was and we didn’t feel the need to change anything. We were happy with the way things were. " Jongdae smiled, looking fondly at Minseok. 

 

" Then last year, that guy " Jongin poked Minseok in the ribs " decided to grow some balls and ask him on a date because he finally realized how much people wanted a piece of Jongdae. "

 

" That was pretty hilarious to see Minseok hyung fidgeting all over the place like Jongdae was going to say no ! " Chanyeol was laughing, the memory of a nervous Minseok popping out in his head like it was yesterday. 

 

"  First of all, no, that was not funny ! And then, ‘ how much people wanted a piece of him ‘ ? There was just one girl who wanted to date him no matter what ok ? And she was pissing me off. So I did what I had to do. " Minseok’s cheeks turned red a little and Jongdae’s cat-like smile appeared. 

 

" I met a girl at the music club and we became friends. She couldn’t resist my amazing charms I guess, and she asked me out on a date. I, obviously, said no, but it never stopped her for asking again and again. "

 

" Were you already in love with someone else ? " The Chinese guy asked, his smile never leaving his face. "

 

" I meaaaaaaan, I knew I was in love with Minseok for years, I was just waiting for him to make a move. I didn’t want things to get weird you know ? We had never talked about dating before, even though we are Ame Soeur. We were friends, and we knew we would be together for the rest of our lives, but we never agreed on being together romantically "

 

" But isn’t that all the point of having an Ame Soeur ? " Chanyeol suddenly asked. 

 

" I don’t think you have to be romantically involved with your Ame Soeur " Minseok answered, smiling up at his giant of a friend " People fall in love with their Ame Soeur and they end up being a couple and that’s great, but I don’t think you should let something like this tell you what to do with your life, you know ? "

 

" But having an Ame Soeur means that your heart belongs to someone. Someone that you will love. "

 

" Yes Chanyeol, but I’m pretty sure that there are all sorts of different ways to love. I think that in a way, people are keeping themselves from falling in love with anyone one else than their Ame Soeur because we’re all taught, since we are young that we are supposed to end up with them. But an Ame Soeur is someone that shares the same passion, and love, and soul as you. You can’t tell me you feel like Jongin and you aren’t at least just a little bit like that ? "

 

" What does my relationship with Jongin has to do with this ? " Chanyeol frowned.

 

" Jongin is your best friend, and you two do share at least a little bit of these things. What I’m saying is that an Ame Soeur could be just a friend. A very close friend. " Minseok smiled, making his point. " Now, I know this isn’t how you see it Chanyeol. For you it’s a romantic bound that is formed between two people at the very moment one of them was born. " 

 

" Hyung, saying that your Ame Soeur could just be a friend is like saying that your relationship with Jongdae isn’t that special "

 

" Our relationship is special. " Jongdae was the one answering this time, his thumb caressing Minseok’s hand " But it is not special because we are Ame Soeur, it’s special, because it’s us. It’s unique, and amazing, and different than any other relationship, because of the love we share, and the fact that we are two completely unique people. Our relation is unique, because we are unique. Just like any relation is. Just like anyone is. We all are special and we don’t need a mark to tell us that we are. We’re in love and mark or no mark, we would have been in love. "

 

" Minseok did talk to you because of your marks though " Jongin pointed out, looking at Jongdae, and Chanyeol nodded. 

 

" Yes he did, but it would have been something else if it wasn’t for the marks. " 

 

" What do you think about the Ame Soeur thing, Jongin ? " Yixing looked at Jongin, asking his question with a little smile. He didn’t know the guy at all. Seeing him for the very first time, and the blond did not really talk about the matter, it was mostly Chanyeol, Minseok and Jongdae. He was curious of what could be going on inside the younger’s head. 

 

" Me ? " Jongin seemed to think for a little while and then he shrugged. " I never really thought about it. " That was a lie, but that, even Chanyeol didn’t know. " It’s cool that we all have someone like this in our life you know ? Someone that will share a piece of our soul and will understand us better than anyone. But I’m not looking for that person. It’ll come eventually, and until then, I already have pretty great friends to share everything with. " Chanyeol smiled, and Jongdae snorted. " I won’t put my life to a stop just because I wanna share a special bound " Chanyeol knew he was talking about him, and Jongdae glanced his way as well, " Until I find the person that will make the mark glow, I’ll have fun "

 

" But, when you will find that person.. Will you and them be a couple ? "

 

" I guess we will. Like Minseok said, we all are taught that our Ame Soeur is someone we will romantically love. But even I can’t tell what’s the future is made of, so, we’ll see. " Jongin smiled, his full lips pulling appart to let appear his white teeth and Yixing just realized how handsome the guy was. 

 

" Have you found yours yet ? " Minseok was the one asking, his eyes trailing on Yixing’s forearm, where he supposed his mark was hidden. 

 

" Oh, no, I haven’t.. I mean, it’s kind of difficult you know ? Because the only way to know if someone’s your Ame Soeur is to touch them, and you can’t decently go over every people you meet and suddenly ask them to touch their skin, that would be weird.. " Jongin’s eyes looked at his best friend, a smile playing on his lips, and Chanyeol ears turned red. 

 

" Y..Yeah.. Totally weird.. " Was Chanyeol’s answer, his neck also becoming red, and his voice fading out. 

 

" So maybe Chanyeol or Jongin is your Ame Soeur ! " Jongdae said, wiggling his eyebrows. He looked stupid, but Chanyeol wasn’t going to say anything. He knew perfectly that his friends were trying to help him. The thought of touching Yixing’ skin was haunting him since that night. He needed to know if they were meant to be. 

 

" You think so ? " The guy tilted his head, thinking about it. If there was a chance that one of the guy would be his, maybe Yixing should just try. He had nothing to lose anyway, on the contrary. " Maybe we should hold hand to see ? " 

 

" Yeah, you guys should totally do that ! " Minseok exclaimed, his smile lighting up his face. 

 

Jongdae grabbed Jongin’s arm, pulling it over the table for Yixing to grab his hand. He knew Chanyeol wouldn’t want to be the first, because no matter how much he wanted to know, it would be too painful to know he wasn’t the one, and then see Jongin’s mark glow. He always preferred to stay uncertain, rather than knowing he hadn’t find his Ame Soeur. 

Yixing looked up to Jongin, a little smile on his face, silently asking him if it was okay. After all, Jongin never said he agreed on this. When the blond gave him a nod, a soft smile on his lips telling him he could do it, Yixing reached his hand over the table. It felt like time had stopped for Chanyeol. The suspense was excruciating. Yixing did not really expect anything to happen. He would be happy any way. He wasn’t actually looking for his Ame Soeur, if it came, he would be glad, but even if it didn’t, he would still be pretty content with his life. 

After what seemed like a lifetime, their hands finally met. Yixing’s pale skin against Jongin’s tanned one. The contrast was beautiful, but as Jongin’s fingertips touched Yixing’s palm, they both knew, without even checking their mark; that wasn’t it. They looked into each other’s eyes, a smile playing on both their faces, while Minseok was pulling on Jongin’s sleeve, cursing under his breath for not doing it earlier. When their friends could finally see that Jongin’s mark wasn’t even glowing a little bit, all eyes were turned on Chanyeol. 

The giant’s heart was beating against his chest like it wanted to get out of there. It wanted to escape the pressure that was put on it. Chanyeol was having a mental crisis over the fact that he was finally going to touch Yixing’s skin, and be sure once and for all. He would finally know. 

He was looking at Yixing’s hand retracting itself from Jongin’s one and reaching for him. It was his turn to put his palm against the Chinese’s one. He could feel Jongin’s hand taping him on the thigh to give him courage, and he lifted up his own. The blond took the time to pull on his best friend’ sleeve to avoid Minseok’s wrath, while Chanyeol’s eyes met Yixing’s. 

They both smiled, though Chanyeol’s was a bit awkward. You could see the tension in his shoulders, and in his arm. Chanyeol felt like he was going to implode, as he did every time he touched someone new. Finding his Ame Soeur was Chanyeol’s goal in life. His dream, and his purpose. He had never thought about being with anyone else that the person who would make his mark glow. The person who would light up his entire world. 

He closed his eyes for a short second before Yixing’s fingertips met his skin. Scared, excited, and nervous. He knew his palm was getting sweaty, and he knew that it was kind of gross, but he couldn’t help it. He took a deep breath and opened his eyes slowly. 

He silently sighed, at the sight of his mark. Completely black, nothing happening on his arm, and his hopes getting crushed once again. Yixing offered him an apologetic, understanding how much it meant to his new friend, and Chanyeol pulled down his sleeve, his hands now both on his lap. 

In his chest, his heart had stopped beating like a madman. It was slow, painful, and dreadful. Chanyeol bit the inside of his cheek, feeling like his chest was being punched again, and again. He was getting tired of this game of cat and mouse that he was playing for years. He was getting tired of always picking up his heart from the ashes every time his hopes would burn it out, before letting it down when the mark decided that it wasn’t going to glow. Chanyeol was getting tired of being heartbroken by someone he hadn’t even met yet. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Chapter Text

 

 

 

 

There was nothing more painful than to watch everyone run away from him like he was going to hurt them just for being in his way. Every step he took, and every look he gave was a cry for someone to just see him. To just see Kyungsoo. But they never did.

 

There was a time when the teenager had a friend. Or someone he thought of as a friend. They would play together and laugh. Run around the backyard and draw stupid things on his bedroom’s walls until his mother found out and grounded him, putting him in a corner to reflect on his actions. Kyungsoo couldn’t care less about being grounded. It was worth all the time facing the walls. He couldn’t care less about his mother making him clean up the mess they made because he had a friend to play with. He had someone to laugh, and cry, and talk, and share with. Kyungsoo never really cared about the way other kids would look at him like he was a monster, because he had someone who was looking at him like he was a superhero, and what more could he ask for ? 

 

At that question, little Kyungsoo would have answered " Nothing ". He had anything he could wish for. A friend, an ally, a partner in crime, and a shoulder to cry on when his brother was being a big meanie. Things couldn’t get better than that, he knew it. He just forgot that they could get worse. Or maybe he genuinely didn’t know. He was a kid, he was innocent, he was blind and he was naive. Kyungsoo was 6 years old, and that alone summed up pretty well how his brain worked. Play, laugh, draw, eat. 

 

The playground was one of his favorite place to be. With the swings, the sandbox, and the slide. This was his little paradise. 

 

Kyungsoo was a late bloomer. He wouldn’t speak until he was 4. Which was, in itself, a problem, because the little one liked to communicate. No matter how. Throwing things had became, for a short amount of time, his way of showing his displeasure. 

 

He took his time, but he eventually got there, and when he finally started to talk, he became so loud in the house that his brother would sometimes wish he could just get back to the time he was throwing things. 

 

Kyungsoo was a really late bloomer. Which made everyone around him worried. The fact that he hadn’t shown any sign of what kind of powers he had at the age of 6 years old was something that rarely happened, and his parents were, from time to time, wondering if he actually had any. 

 

Kyungsoo wasn’t really paying attention to the fact that he couldn’t perform any kind of tricks like everyone around him. it didn’t bother him that there was a kid throwing water at his friends while another one was having the time of his life turning the water into ice cubes and laughing like a madman when the girls were screaming because of the cold. Kyungsoo was too busy playing tag with his best friend to care about the fact that he was the talk of every parents and kids around the neighborhood. He couldn’t care less about the way they would look at him, because he would look at someone else, anyway. 

 

It all went down the drain when his little playground paradise became his very own nightmare. When he pushed a bit too hard, and he pulled a bit too much. When he fell from a bit too high, and suddenly, all the eyes were a bit too suffocating. When he realized it was all a bit too good to be true. So good, that it was fake. 

 

Kyungsoo was having fun with his best friend. Two little kids, playing around the playground without a care in the world, never noticing the girl that was coming their way. Her name, Kyungsoo couldn’t remember, but the way she sat on the swing like nobody was there, starting to push the ground with her feet and never even glancing to see if his best friend was okay, that, Kyungsoo remembered perfectly. He could also remember how his little fingers grabbed the swing and how he pushed her down. 

 

He didn’t mean to make her fall. He just wanted an apology. How could he know that she was going to fly away from the swing and fall down on the concrete ? He was just a kid, he did not have this kind of strength. Or did he ? 

 

Kyungsoo was confused, and his best friend was looking at him with big eyes, wondering why he would do something like that. The little girl was crying, her knee bleeding and Kyungsoo ran to her. He wanted to help. All he wanted to do was help. There was no ill intention when the kid grabbed her hand to pull her up. He couldn’t even understand why she started to scream so loud, and cry so much. He barely touched her. 

 

For a split second, Kyungsoo thought that maybe, she was pretending to be hurt, just so he would get grounded. But he saw the pain on her face. He saw the way her eyes widened when he pulled on her hand and felt the bones crashing into each other. And he heard the way her voice cracked when he let her go. There was honestly something wrong going on, and Kyungsoo, from his 6 years old little mind, knew he was the problem. Running from the scene, Kyungsoo hid behind a tree. He put his hands on his ears, trying to ignore the cries and he waited. 

 

He had no idea for how long he’d been there, but when his mother finally found him, he was cold. So cold that his little fingers had turned blue. His mother was crying, pulling him against her, and tightening her arms around him, but all Kyungsoo could think about was that scream. All he could hear were the cries. And all he could see were the tears. 

 

He remembered that little girl who never came back to school after that day. The way her cheeks were drowned by her tears, the pain on her face still inked inside Kyungsoo’s brain like a bad tattoo you can never really get rid of without leaving a scar behind. He remembered feeling her bones crack between his fingers and he remembered her hand going numb against his little palm. He remembered the confusion, and the fear. And most of all he remembered how much he hated his powers. 

 

Kyungsoo, after that day, never really let anyone touched him again. Too scared to hurt, too scared to break someone. 

 

Kyungsoo, after that day, never really saw his best friend anymore. 

All those made up stories they would say, and all those games they would play.  

They disappeared like everything else, letting Kyungsoo all alone with his thoughts. With his guilt. And with the only reminder that he never really had anyone, except the one he made up in his mind. And even him, he was afraid to hurt, so het got rid of him. 

Even his imagination was scared of him, so Kyungsoo let his imagination get away, saying goodbye to his only friend. 

 

 

Kyungsoo had grown. He was a teenager, and his powers were under control. He knew how to stop not to hurt anyone, and he learned what he was exactly capable of. There was more to him than a tiny version of the Hulk. More to him than a beast that could cause an earthquake and crack your head open like an egg. Kyungsoo had a lot to show, if only someone wanted to see

 

He was used to them running away. Used to them talking behind his back and being scared of him. That, he knew how to deal with. That, he knew how to ignore. No matter how much it would sometimes hurt him, to realize that he had no one. But again, maybe this was the best thing to do, to keep everyone safe. 

 

But what was he supposed to do when this happened ? What was he supposed to do when Mister Popularity himself started to scream at him in the middle of the cafeteria like he was the one at fault for bumping into him -twice- ?     

 

Kyungsoo had no clue. Not even a little one. He could have strangled him there, in front of everybody, for being so full of himself. For acting like a jerk and for pretending he wasn’t the one at fault. He could have made him fly across the cafeteria if he wanted to. 

 

Jongin, telling him that he wasn’t capable of using his brain. Jongin, being his pretentious self and having everyone side with him because Kyungsoo was the monster of the school. All the gasps and the whispers, like he was going to kill him on the spot. Fucking Kim Jongin and his pretentious haircut. His pretentious hair color, and his pretentious face. Kim Fucking Jongin, and the way Kyungsoo was thrilled to realize that there was at least one person in this school that wasn’t scared of him. And he was so, so pissed to know that he was thrilled. 

 

But the teenager wasn’t going to let them all win by stomping his foot or punching the wall. There was no way on Earth he would let them be right about him. Kyungsoo let no other proof of his mood than the pieces of his chopsticks sleeping at the bottom of the trashcan; perfect representation of Kim Jongin in Kyungsoo’s head. 

 

 

Minseok looked at Chanyeol with a smile on his face, and the giant knew what that meant. He  really couldn’t deal with the pity at the moment. He grabbed his chopsticks, ignored them all, and finished his plate like nothing happened. What was the point of talking about it anyway. Yixing wasn’t his Ame Soeur, and that was it. 

 

He felt his friends’ eyes on him for a short moment, until they finally decided to let it go. He could now hear Jongin eating his chicken, and Jongdae being a jerk to everyone, like he always was. This, was normal and it felt good. The pang on his heart was still there, but it was nothing new. Chanyeol had felt that pain for years now; he was used to it. There was close to nothing he could do to soothe it. He knew it, his friends knew it, and everybody did. 

 

Minseok was having a conversation with Yixing, which reminded him of the promise the giant made to his new friend. He looked around the cafeteria, looking for Junmyeon. The school president wasn’t at his usual seat, but he knew he was there anyway. He wasn’t the kind of guy to miss school, and Jongdae and Jongin had seen him earlier, so, there was that. 

 

" Yixing needs to talk to Jun " Chanyeol spoke, cutting Minseok in the middle of his sentence, his eyes still looking at every corner of the room. 

 

" Why is that ? Do you know him ? " The senior smiled, looking at Yixing and the little guy, once again, was looking embarrassed. Chanyeol, his attention finally on them, decided that it was maybe best for Yixing’s pride to explain everything himself, so he did exactly that. 

 

It didn’t take long for Minseok to grab his phone and send a text to his cousin. The two boys had always been close, since they were little kids. Always playing together, finding it so amusing to combine their powers to make the girls scream. Junmyeon was way much more of a troublemaker when he was still a boy. Growing up made him more serious. As for Minseok, being in love with Jongdae had kept him youthful and mischievous. No matter how much of a pre adult he already was, he could always count on Jongdae to have fun and let it go when things were getting a bit too much. 

 

Minseok and Junmyeon had always been more than cousins. Almost brothers. Through the entirety of kindergarten, elementary school and middle school, the two boys would always have been together, no matter what. Now, some people might have think that Minseok meeting Jongdae made the cousins grew appart, but that was just a really stupid deduction that more often than not would make them laugh. The truth was really easier than that. They just weren’t circulating around the same circle. Junmyeon was the school president, and his friends, most of them, were found during his campaign. As for Minseok, it was an easy task to find friends. Jongdae was there, and where Jongdae was, people were found. Jongdae would often say that this applied to Minseok as well, but the older guy just knew that his boyfriend was as appealing to people as sugar was to bees. 

 

Just a few minutes after the text was sent, Junmyeon was there, greeting him, Chanyeol, and Yixing. He took a few seconds to ask Jongin if he was okay, and Minseok didn’t really know what it was all about, but he was pretty sure Jongdae would put him back on track later on. 

 

The president sat down, smiling his sweet and caring smile, and Minseok introduced him to Yixing.

 

" It’s great to finally properly meet you, " Junmyeon said, " I know we share a couple of classes, but I’ve been kind of busy since you arrived and we never got to be introduced, but if I’m correct, you met Sehun right ? He’s the student council secretary, he was supposed to give you a tour of the school on your first day "

 

From the other side of the table, Yixing could hear Jongin laugh, his mouth still full of chicken, his hand covering his lips and Chanyeol’s hand patting him on the back. Jongdae looked at him with disgust, throwing a napkin on his tray, and Minseok was looking at Junmyeon like they shared some sort of secret that nobody knew. All in all, Yixing was pretty much lost, and he decided that maybe, it would just be better for him to answer the question and ignore his new friends. It was a wise decision, if you asked anyone. 

 

" I did, he was really nice " Yixing was smiling. The guy he met at the time, Oh Sehun, was indeed really nice. He did not talk much, but he was polite and he did his job properly. He was younger than him for what he understood, so he hasn’t seen him that much since his first day. 

 

" I’m glad then " Junmyeon smiled. " Min’ said you needed to talk to me ? "

 

" Ha yeah.. Hum.. Mr.Cho told me to ask you if I could borrow your notes ? I just arrived so I missed half of the lessons and.. "

 

Junmyeon was more than happy to help him. His smile never left his face, and Chanyeol was wondering how could someone be this glad to talk about Math, because, really ? But it was Junmyeon, and the guy was enjoying high school like no one else before. 

 

Truth was, Junmyeon loved to learn, but it didn’t occur to him that books could be useful until he was at least thirteen years old. He never was a bad student, nor was he particularly good. He was average, and he couldn’t care less about being the school president or anything related. School was fun, because he got to see his friends, but other than that, he was not particularly thrilled to go. Things just started to slowly change when little Junmyeon began to be interested in the stars. His grandfather taking him away on a weekend to see a meteor shower. The boy really couldn’t care less about that, he just wanted to go to Minseok’s house and play video games, but seeing them, all those white stars running through the black sky, he was, quite literally, starstruck. He‘d never seen anything so beautiful before, and he was pretty sure he hadn’t saw anything so beautiful since that day.

 

It didn’t took long for him to drown himself in books and videos. For a few months, stars were all he would talk about. Until stars became science. It has a name, and Junmyeon knew that if they ever talked about astronomy in school, he would totally crush it. The feeling of knowing something but still running after it was killing him. Discovering, and understanding. Having tons of questions, and finally finding the answers. Junmyeon realized he loved to know, so he started to learn. Stars, and math. Biology, and history. There wasn’t really anything that he did not like. From Science, to literature, through art and history, Junmyeon wanted to learn them all. And so he did. Still was. 

 

Becoming the student council president had nothing to do with learning though, and one might think that it was way too much work (one like Chanyeol, or Jongin. Or Jongdae, who couldn’t even understand how someone would want to have this kind of responsibility, in high school !), but Junmyeon was a kind hearted guy, and seeing people get bullied was too much for him. He tried helping them before, but he had no power whatsoever. All he really knew was that school should be a safe place, and Junmyeon decided early on, that if no one was gonna make it happen, he would. 

 

" You know what, how about you come over after school so I can give you the notes and help you with whatever it is that you need ? " Yixing was surprised and looked at Chanyeol for a split second. The giant smiled gently and nodded. That’s all the new guy needed to accept. Junmyeon simply asked him to wait for him at the gate so they could go home together, and after that he left the table to go back to his own friends. 

 

It wasn’t long before Jongdae grabbed everyone’s attention again. No more than a few seconds, and all eyes were already back on him. All except Chanyeol’s who couldn’t care less about his friend’s need of attention. 

 

 

Chanyeol was walking silently, his nose buried in his phone, catching up on his Tumblr feed, never really paying attention to anything around him. It was easier like this. 

 

Jongin was at dance practice, Jongdae and Minseok already went home together, and as for his new friend Yixing, well, he left earlier with Junmyeon, their lessons of the day finishing way before Chanyeol’s. He needed distraction for whatever stupid thought was bringing his mood down. Tumblr was very good at it. 

 

Laughing at some random text posts about Harry Potter was kind of Chanyeol’s go to when he felt like he was going to explode from frustration. The lunch’s event was still twirling in his head, refusing to let him have some peace. It wasn’t the first time it happened, but every time Chanyeol realized that someone wasn’t actually his Âme Soeur, it felt like he was taking a step back, walking farther and farther away from the person he was looking for. He couldn’t stop himself from being jealous of Minseok and Jongdae, who’ve found each other so early into their life. Just like his parents, Chanyeol wished he’d met his Âme Soeur back in elementary school, when everything was still so simple. Talking to a stranger wasn’t considerate weird, and Chanyeol could touch his friends’ (and not friends) hands without anyone looking at him like he’d grown a second head. 

 

At the moment, Chanyeol was simply trying to find anything to forget the fact that Yixing wasn’t actually made for him. Thinking about it, it probably was for the best. The Chinese was a sweetheart, but maybe too much of a free spirit. Chanyeol wasn’t sure he would be able to follow Yixing in his track of thoughts. 

 

He was deep in his Tumblr mania when he heard someone say something. He didn’t actually catch what the person said, but it made him look around, just in case.

 

" Giant ! " The voice called again, and this time, Chanyeol knew perfectly they were talking to him. He looked behind him, just enough to see a little guy waving at him, his strawberry blond hair bouncing on top of his head while he was walking towards him. Chanyeol frowned for a few seconds before something in his brain just clicked. " I knew it was you ! Those ears are for sure a once in a lifetime occurrence ! " Chanyeol self-consciously slid his hands on his ears, trying to cover them up with his hair, hopelessly. " Nah, don’t do that, they’re actually pretty cute ! "

 

" Hum.. " Chanyeol wasn’t good at receiving compliments. " You’re.. Baekhyung right ? Yixing’s best friend ? "

 

" Nah, it’s Baekhyun actually, but I’ll give it to you, we’ve only met once " The little guy smiled, reassuring Chanyeol that it was indeed okay. " I’m sorry, I don’t remember your name ? "

 

" Ha, it’s Chanyeol. " The giant said. " Park Chanyeol. " He said again, just for good measure. 

 

" Right, Chanyeol ! Nice to see you again " Baekhyun offered him another squared smile, letting Chanyeol speechless because, why was this guy talking to him anyway ? Not that he mind, but really, he wasn’t expecting anyone to compliment him on his ears. In the middle of the street. By a stranger, basically. " I’m sorry to bother you " Baekhyun added quickly, making Chanyeol feel like he was used to people telling him off.

 

" You’re not bothering me " The giant smiled. " I was just kind of..taken aback, you know ? I wasn’t expecting anyone to suddenly call me giant and say my ears were cute "

 

" Yeaaaah.. " A little laugh left Baekhyun lips, just loud enough for Chanyeol to hear it. " Hm, actually I kind of had something to ask you "

 

" I’m all ears " The little guy smiled, his eyes on the ears for a few seconds before following a trail ending up straight into Chanyeol’s orbs. 

 

" Haven you seen Yixing ? I was supposed to meet him at the school gate, he wanted me to walk him home tonight, but he wasn’t there when I arrived and he’s not answering his phone "

 

" Oh.. Hum.. He must have forgotten to call you then.. " 

 

" Sounds like him. " An amused smile took place on Chanyeol’s face, because even though he knew the Chinese for like, a day, he knew it was a pretty accurate depiction of who Yixing truly was. 

 

" He went home with a friend of mine who’s in his class, to review all the lessons he’s missed "

 

" Damnit Zhang ! " 

 

" Sorry you had to wait.. "

 

" It’s okay, I’m used to it actually. But still ! I was gonna treat him an ice cream, he can dream on now ! "

 

" How harsh. " Chanyeol said, mocking the smaller for the ridiculous punishment. 

 

" It is harsh. You just don’t know how much the guy loves ice cream ! " 

 

" I suppose you know him better than I do, indeed " 

 

" You bet I do ! " The blond sighed deeply, looking around him for some sort of sign of what to do next. He honestly had no idea. He had plan his entire night based on the fact that his best friend was gonna be with him. Now his plans were useless. 

 

" Is there something wrong ? " The giant asked after hearing the deep sigh coming from the little guy. It never was a good thing to hear someone being this defeated.

 

" I have no idea what to do with myself. " Baekhyun looked up at him. " Wait a minute.. "

 

" ..Yes ? " 

 

" Are you busy right now ? "

 

" Well.. " Was being on Tumblr a valid excuse ? No. Not that Chanyeol wanted to get away. Baekhyun was fun. Well, at least it seemed like it. He couldn’t be a jerk. His best friend was Yixing. " I suppose I’m not.. Why’s that ? "

 

" I need to borrow your body for like an hour or so ! "

 

" Borrow my..body ? " Why didn’t he say he was busy again ?

 

" Let’s go ! " 

 

Baekhyun didn’t really let him much of a choice. Grabbing Chanyeol by the sleeve, he pulled him behind him, walking in the opposite direction of Chanyeol’s house, not caring a bit about Chanyeol’s questions and whimpers. The giant was obviously strong enough to pull his hand away (yes, he was.) but a part of him was actually really intrigued about the little guy, and what could he possibly do to him, really ? 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Chapter Text

 

 

Ok, so, maybe that wasn’t a good idea. 

Maybe Chanyeol should have said he was busy, and maybe he shouldn’t have followed a stranger. 

Maybe, even, he had been stupid, because, who the hell does that ?

 

Baekhyun was still walking ahead of him, babbling about how, it was gonna be so easy, pulling the giant by the wrist and never really looking back at him.

 

There was an alarm going off in Chanyeol’s head, screaming at him to get out of here. To leave, and never come back. To just slip away from Baekhyun’s hand and run until he would get home. The blond guy stood no chance against Chanyeol. He was small, cute, and his perfectly manicured hands were a proof to the giant that he wasn’t one to get into fights (really, his hands would be disastrous otherwise). But to be honest, neither was Chanyeol.

 

Yeah, maybe his hair was a mess. And he couldn’t really hide his callused hands. And, also, he did have a few scars here and there (he was a clumsy boy), but Chanyeol, never once in his life, got into a fight, not even a verbal one. He was actually pretty proud of it. 

 

Chanyeol didn’t like fights. To be fair, he didn’t like conflict, or violence. Fists and words could hurt someone badly, and Chanyeol was convinced that there were better ways to fix things. Still, Baekhyun wasn’t letting go of him any time soon, if his tight grip around Chanyeol’s wrist was any indication, so maybe Chanyeol should actually do something about it. 

 

 

" Hum.. So.." Chanyeol coughed a little bit, and Baekhyun looked at him with a small smile. 

 

" Yes ? "

 

" You..didn’t actually tell me where it is we’re going ? "

 

" We’re almost there " Baekhyun’s smile grew bigger. He was cute, Chanyeol thought. But he was also maybe a kidnapper, so there was that. 

 

" What are we going to do, there ? " The giant asked, tilting his head a little to have a better view of Baekhyun’s face. 

 

" Well, you see.. " The little guy let go of Chanyeol’s wrist and the giant quickly crossed his hands behind his back, just in case (you can never be too prudent). " Ok so, Yixing was supposed to help me with this thing "

 

" What thing ? " He heard more than he saw Baekhyun take a deep breath. His steps were now slow and soon enough, he was on Chanyeol’s side, looking straight ahead. It felt like he didn’t want the giant to actually see his face. 

 

" Did Yixing tell you why he changed school ? " Chanyeol frowned, wondering why Baekhyun would talk about this so suddenly.

 

" No " he answered anyway " He didn’t. I haven’t asked him either. I figured he would tell me if he wants to. "

 

" Aren’t you a nice guy, Park Chanyeol. " 

 

 

Chanyeol could hear the sarcasm in his voice. But he could also see how Baekhyun’s eyes were looking straight ahead, but never really focusing on anything. The blond decided to throw another smile out there, but it was a little off, and Chanyeol decided that it was for the better to change the subject.

 

 

" What did you need my body for ? It’s kind of a weird request to make. Especially to someone you don’t even know, don’t you think ? "

 

" Hey, I do know you, we’ve talked to each other before ! " 

 

" I’m not sure it’s considered a conversation " Baekhyun smiled again, a real one this time, Chanyeol thought. 

 

" Yeah, you’re probably right. " They took a left turn, and Baekhyun looked up at him. " Yixing is a really good Basketball player, you know ? "

 

" Nope, I did not know that "

 

" Well he is. Maybe he’ll join the team in your school ? He would actually be a wonderful captain if he’d put his mind to "

 

" I’m not sure Yi Fan, the current captain, would be too pleased about that "

 

" Haha, Yi Fan is more talk than actions "

 

" Do you know him ? " Chanyeol was frowning again. 

 

" Yes, he’s a friend. His dad and mine are partners so obviously we’ve been together a lot. I know him since middle school. Yi Fan was smaller than me at the time ! "

 

 

Chanyeol knew it was rude. And maybe it wasn’t nice. But really ? Yi Fan ? Smaller than Baekhyun ? The giant started laughing so hard, hitting his knee with his palm and throwing his other arm around his waist, that he didn’t even realized that Baekhyun had finally stopped walking.

 

 

" Hm, first of all, rude. " Said the small guy, side eyeing Chanyeol, a little smile playing on his lips. " Second of all, you giant prick, we’re here " 

 

 

Chanyeol took a deep breath, wiping away his tears and finally looked around him. It wasn’t actually hard to recognize the place. It’s just that Chanyeol wasn’t used to be there. He walked past it, sometimes, but it wasn’t really in his list of favorite places to hang out. (It was in Minseok’s though). 

 

In front of him was a Basketball court that he knew was always packed with a few groups of sweaty teenagers. There was already a game going on, and Chanyeol could hear the noise the chains on the basket made when the ball would fall through it. He looked at Baekhyun, expecting an explanation, but the blond guy didn’t seem to hear the silent question in Chanyeol’s eyes (or he didn’t care, Chanyeol couldn’t tell). Smiling, Baekhyun made his way to  the court, not saying anything, and after shouting something that Chanyeol didn’t hear, Yixing’s best friend was talking to one of the player, pointing with his thumb towards Chanyeol, who was awkwardly standing a few feet away, still trying to figure out what was he doing here. 

 

It seemed like Baekhyun did have a pretty specific idea of what he wanted, and Chanyeol, once again, thought about running away. It would be a bit more difficult now though, because Baekhyun’s friends (were they his friends ?) were just a bit scarier than Baekhyun himself (or maybe Chanyeol was a scaredy cat, which seemed more likely). 

 

One of the player waved to the giant, offering him a kind smile, and Chanyeol felt his shoulders relaxing a little bit after that. He thought it would be a good idea to stop standing awkwardly and finally made his way towards Baekhyun and the rest of the team (they were only 6, Chanyeol guessed they were playing 3 against 3).  

 

 

" Baekhyun said you would play instead of Yixing ? " One of the guy started without even saying hi.

 

" I will ? " 

 

 

Chanyeol asked, confused. What the hell ‘ he was gonna play ‘ ? Chanyeol couldn’t even properly walk without stumbling down and now they expected him to play Basketball ? 

 

It didn’t seem like the guy heard the confusion in his voice though, and soon enough, Chanyeol was being pulled away by Baekhyun. A girl sitting on the side gave him a kind smile before she stood up and joined the other guys, leaving Chanyeol and Baekhyun alone so they could talk.

 

 

" Listen, we need to win this okay ? So.. See the guy with the bushy eyebrows ? " Chanyeol did not give any answer, looking at Baekhyun like the small guy had grown a second head. " That’s the guy you need to take care of during that game. He’s a really good player, but he’s got a hard time shooting three pointers so keep him away from the loop okay ? 

 

" What the hell Baekhyun ? "

 

" Also, be careful, he can slow you down easily and even though we’re not supposed to use our powers, I can’t actually trust them. They would do anything to win. "

 

" Baekhyun ! " Chanyeol called with a deep voice. It earned him a look from the other guys, but at least Baekhyun was finally listening to him.

 

" What ? " He frowned.

 

" What the hell is happening ? Why am I supposed to play Basketball ? "

 

" I told you I needed to borrow your body "

 

" What ? " Chanyeol was confused. " What do you mean ? "

 

" You are freakingly tall Chanyeol " 

 

" Being tall doesn’t mean I can play Basketball ! "

 

" I’m not asking you to play Basketball, I’m asking you to block the guy who actually can ! "

 

" Okay, I have to be honest here, I don’t understand a single thing that’s going on "

 

 

Baekhyun sighed but gave Chanyeol a smile and a little pat on the shoulder. The giant suddenly felt really stupid, like he was missing on something. He didn’t like it.

 

 

" Can you just explain ? Please ? "

 

" See the guy with the white shoes ? " Baekhyun asked, and Chanyeol recognized the guy who talked to him earlier. He was tall as well. Not as tall as Chanyeol, but still. He was talking to his friends, his hands moving around, and he was frowning, looking very serious. Chanyeol nodded for Baekhyun to continue. " So, he’s kind of like a jerk, and Yixing and I were supposed to play against him and bushy eyebrows guy to close a deal "

 

" What kind of deal ? " Chanyeol wasn’t at peace right now. 

 

" Just for him to stop being a jerk to one of our friends. Honestly, it’s kind of stupid, but he wouldn’t let him go unless we’d do that so we figured we had nothing to lose anyway. " Chanyeol could actually lose his self-esteem, but he wasn’t going to say that out loud. Also, that was such a dumb problem. Why would the guy even bet on a basketball game ? This was real life, not a drama. People didn’t do this kind of things in real life. 

 

" What did he do ? " He asked anyway, tilting his head.

 

" Well, it seems like the guy can’t take rejection properly, and he’s been a real pain in the ass for a month or two. I don’t even get it, ‘cause it was obvious from the very beginning that he was going to be rejected, but I guess some people are stupid like that. "

 

" Why was it obvious ? " 

 

" Âme Soeur crap " Baekhyun said absentmindedly, looking behind him. 

 

 

Usually, Chanyeol would say something because Âme Soeur weren’t ‘crap’. They were everything Chanyeol had always believed in and he couldn’t stay there, listening to someone talk like that about the most precious part of his existence. Chanyeol loved to know that there was a soulmate for everyone. That it was actually written. That no one was ever completely alone in this world. But before the giant had the chance to say anything, he was once again pulled by the wrist by a very determined Baekhyun. 

 

 

Chanyeol was bad at Basketball. Scratch that. Chanyeol was bad at sports. It’s not that he didn’t understand the concept, or the rules. It just felt like his body didn’t actually want to listen to his brain telling him what to do. When his head was screaming " Catch it ! ", his feet decided it was for the best to actually step back to avoid the ball that was flying towards him. 

 

Also, it didn’t help that the ‘bushy eyebrows guy’ as Baekhyun would call him, was indeed slowing him down. Chanyeol knew he wasn’t a fast runner, but he could also feel how his legs  felt ten times heavier than usual every time he would actually try to block his opponent. It wasn’t a fair game, and Chanyeol didn’t like it. 

 

He didn’t like the way they were cheating. He didn’t like to feel his white school shirt sticking to his back due to the sweat. He didn’t like how they were mocking them. And he didn’t like the way Baekhyun looked like he was going to fall down from exhaustion. 

 

It wasn’t a fair game, and Chanyeol was done with it. They wanted to cheat ? Ok, Chanyeol was all for using his power. That, he could actually control. He rolled up his sleeves because it was actually getting really hot, and after Baekhyun eyed him for a few seconds, the game was back on, and the little guy was already running after the ball. 

 

Chanyeol was thinking, fast. He could do a lot of things with his power, but he needed to find something useful. He could raise the temperature coming up from the ground, but it would affect Baekhyun as well and that wasn’t a good idea because Chanyeol wasn’t actually good enough to throw the ball into the hoop. Bushy eyebrows guy was running towards him, and Chanyeol could once again feel his legs slowly becoming so heavy that it made it hard to move. The ball was in the bushy guy’s hands. It was an opportunity.

 

It didn’t take more than a few seconds for Chanyeol to finally be able to project a hot gust of heat around bushy guy. Not too hot that it could actually hurt him, but hot enough that he let the ball go. Chanyeol grabbed it easily, running to the loop, and repeating his action once again when the other guy was coming in his direction. Chanyeol knew that his heat could feel like you weren’t able to breathe anymore. It couldn’t actually harm them, because he wasn’t concentrating on letting the hot air floating around the guys, but it was enough to distract them from the game, and Chanyeol threw the ball to Baekhyun. 

 

 

After what felt like hours, Chanyeol was exhausted. He felt like his legs were gonna give up, and he was feeling extra thirsty. His power was cool indeed, but it would dehydrate him easily and running around was certainly not helping him. 

 

At least they won, Chanyeol thought. 

 

Baekhyun was happy. His eyes shining under the afternoon sun, and a square smile prettily stretching his lips. He gave Chanyeol a high five when the ball fell through the chains one last time, and Chanyeol had half a mind to hug him. The game was intense like that. 

 

They left the court as soon as the other guy promised Baekhyun that he wouldn’t bother them anymore, and Baekhyun thanked Chanyeol for what he did.

 

 

" I wouldn’t have been able to do it without you " Baekhyun said.

 

" You sure about that ? Because it really felt like I didn’t help that much. Especially when I was running away from the ball. " Baekhyun laughed a little, combing his wet fringe with the tip of his fingers.

 

" I know what you did Chanyeol. I could feel the heat even though I wasn’t near them " The taller let out an awkward little laugh, suddenly feeling guilty.

 

" Sorry about that ? " He asked, trying to act cute.

 

" I mean, they cheated first so..you know. And after a while, I felt like we didn’t actually had a choice. "

 

" We ? " Chanyeol tilted his head, looking at Baekhyun with a little smile playing on his face.

 

" Yes, we. You thought I was gonna let you do that all by yourself ? " The smaller gently pushed his elbow against Chanyeol’s ribs. 

 

" I didn’t even see you do anything ? "

 

" That’s because I’m talented " Baekhyun said, a smug smile on his face. Chanyeol liked it; the way Baekhyun was acting. It kind of reminded him of Jongdae. " I blinded them once or twice. Or maybe a bit more than that. I stopped counting. "

 

" Blinded ? "

 

 

Instead of answering with words, Baekhyun decided to actually show him what he meant. He put up his hand, palm up and facing the sky and after a few seconds, Chanyeol could see a little ball of light swinging between Baekhyun’s fingers. It was really beautiful, if you asked Chanyeol. 

 

 

" That is such a cool thing ! " He half-screamed, looking like an overly excited puppy.

 

" Ya’ think ? " Baekhyun asked, a shy smile on his face. " Most people say that it’s kind of useless "

 

" Useless ? " Chanyeol frowned.

 

" Yes " Baekhyun started to walk again, Chanyeol moving with him. " Most people think it’s a dumb power ‘cause it never actually is useful. Take yours for example. You can create fire, and heat. You can help people like you did the other day with Yixing, transferring your warmth into his body. "

 

" Your power doesn’t have to be useful. " Baekhyun looked at him, waiting for Chanyeol to continue. " I mean, it’s not the point. "

 

" What’s the point ? "

 

" Is there really a point ? We just have them. It’s cool. But I don’t think it necessarily means something. Fire, you know ? It’s not as useful as one could think. Like, yeah, I’m never cold, sure that’s a plus. But it also means that when I use it, I am thirsty as fuck because my body doesn’t produce enough water to actually hydrate me properly. Or some shit like, the doctor said. Also, I’m kind of clumsy, so sometimes I feel like it’s a really dangerous gift. I could actually lit someone on fire. Yeah, I do want to lit Jongdae’s ass on fire ‘cause he’s a pain you know, but sometimes I’m just scared I’m gonna hurt someone. Honestly, I’m just as useful as a fireplace. And half of the houses around here have one, so you see ? Not that special. "

 

" You thought a lot about it huh ? " Baekhyun was still looking at Chanyeol, intrigued. 

 

" It’s not that I thought about it a lot. I’m just aware of it. I’m a match. And I’m dangerous. Your power is light. You can actually, literally light up the world. "

 

" Yeah, like a bulb. Don’t all the houses around here have those ? " 

 

" It’s different. You can’t hurt people with light. You can help them. "

 

" You did help me on the court though. Without hurting anyone. "

 

" That’s because I wasn’t using actual fire. Just the heat. I mean, more like, the fire was inside of me. "

 

" Was it ? Literally ? "

 

" I think so ? I never really thought about it. I can feel it inside, but I don’t know if it’s actually there. " 

 

" Let’s have a drink. I’ll pay. To thank you for helping me. " Baekhyun suddenly said. 

 

" What ? No, no it’s okay, you don’t have to ! " Chanyeol was waving his hands in front of him, trying to prove a point. 

 

" I’m gonna think you don’t want to spend time with me. " Baekhyun was looking into his eyes, and Chanyeol felt like he was going to die of awkwardness. 

 

" That’s not what I meant ! You just don’t have to pay for me !! " He half screamed, and Baekhyun let out a little laugh.

 

" Take a deep breath Chanyeol, I’m just messing with you. " The smile on his face was kind of cute, and Chanyeol thought that maybe it wasn’t such a bad idea to have a drink. He was thirsty after all. And Baekhyun was kind of nice. He liked hanging out with him.

 

 

The music was blasting through the walls, bouncing against the mirrors and making the people in the room move in a coordinate way. Every flick of the wrists, every drift of the legs, every motion of the arms, all calculated to recreate the beautiful story told by the music. 

 

From the bottom of his feet, to the tip of his fingers, Jongin gave it all he had. His passion, his heart, his energy, nothing was kept inside. Feelings out, the dancer was a hundred percent honest when he was moving across the floor. His mind was open, his eyes were close, his heart was out, and his body was free. Jongin never felt happier than when he was here, dancing with everything he had. 

 

Shifting his body in different angles, not caring once about the people around him. This was his place. His comfort zone. His happiness. He could feel the music coming to an end inside his chest, under his feet. Slowly getting down, closing his heart, his mind, Jongin finally stopped moving as the music faded away, the speakers now playing the last note, and it was done. 

 

He was breathing heavily, his chest moving up and down as his lungs tried to inhale as much oxygen as needed. His mind was getting down from his high. Jongin was slowly coming back, opening his eyes and slowly pushing on his feet to get up. 

 

There was a smile on his dance instructor’s face, meaning he was proud of all of them, happy to see how much progress they made, to see how they were interpreting his choreography. Jongin smiled back and walked away to grab a towel from his bag. He was wiping his sweat when he felt someone jabbing him in the ribs, and Jongin looked up to see Sehun looking at him with a smug smile on his face.

 

 

" Heard you got a new boyfriend ? " 

 

" You need to step up your gossip game Sehun " 

 

 

Jongin was always in a good mood after dance class. It was easy for him to joke around with Sehun. He met the guy in this exact room, a few years before, and they hit it off right away. He wasn’t expecting Sehun to go to the same high school as him, but the younger did. It was cool to be able to see him everyday. 

 

 

" You know what I mean. " Sehun said. " A little birdie told me you were sucking face with Hanseol at the school gate. "

 

" Is that bird named Taemin ? " Jongin drank a big gulp of water, the cold liquid sliding down his throat and making him feel better.

 

" I mean, obviously. " 

 

 

He offered his friend a smile and threw his towel inside his gym bag, grabbing his phone and looking if he had any new messages. One from Chanyeol, sending one of those Harry Potter text posts (Jongin loved Harry Potter, but he didn’t love it like Chanyeol did), and one from Sun-Hi, a girl he went out with a few weeks before. He ignored that text and chose to respond to Chanyeol with an emoji. 

 

 

" I didn’t know you wanted to do the devil’s tango with Hanseol " Sehun added, throwing his bag on his right shoulder and following Jongin as he was leaving the dance room. 

 

" Gosh you speak like an old guy. You should stop hanging out with Junmyeon. " 

 

" Leave Junmyeon out of this, it’s not his fault if he was born with an old guy’s brain, he did not ask for this " 

 

" Neither did we " 

 

 

Sehun pushed him a little, and Jongin pushed him back. The two were friends for quite some time now so there wasn’t really any awkwardness between them. They were actually so comfortable around each other that they decided that they could fool around, sometimes, when they needed to relax and they couldn’t find anyone else. They were both aware that it was purely sexual, and that it didn’t mean anything. It was a good choice they made, they said. They trusted each other and sex was good. There was no downside in their little agreement. 

 

Jongin knew that Sehun was still waiting to be with his Âme Soeur again. The guy met his other half when he was still a pre-teen, during a family summer trip in China, and since then, he never really could think about anyone else than the cute guy with the doll face (as he would call him). Sehun talked about the Chinese a lot of times. So much that Jongin was pretty sure he could recognize him if they were to cross path. Sehun didn’t have a name, or a picture, but there was no way he could actually miss those big shiny eyes and his cute little pink mouth. Jongin thought that Sehun was obsessed. Sehun said it was a healthy obsession. Jongin wasn’t sure he agreed with him.

 

Sehun knew that Jongin would never fall in love with him. In fact, Sehun was pretty sure Jongin would never fall in love with anyone. He didn’t know why, how, or even for how long, but his friend was damaged. Broken. Jongin never talked about it, but it was obvious from the way  he danced. The way he smiled. The way he fucked. Sehun wasn’t sure anyone could help him get out of that dark zone Jongin was in, but at least they could help him get a little bit of light in there. 

 

 

 

" I heard about your little fight with Do Kyungsoo " Sehun suddenly said on their way to the bus stop. " I see you’re still alive and healthy. "

 

" It’s not like the guy would actually touch me, you know ? " 

 

 

Jongin wasn’t stupid. Unlike the majority of the people in school, Jongin knew that Kyungsoo would never hurt anyone. It didn’t take much to realize that honestly. Kyungsoo had a lot of opportunities to hurt someone if he ever wanted to. Jongin knew he could hear the whispers and see the looks. It was obvious, how many times people were running away from him like he was actually going to kill them if they were too close. Kyungsoo never said anything. Kyungsoo never touched anyone. Kyungsoo never broke anything. Not a wall. Not a table. Not a desk. Do Kyungsoo never even once glared at any of them. Jongin, sometimes, would wonder why people were still scared of the little guy, because Kyungsoo proved many times that he wasn’t a threat to anyone. 

 

 

" He doesn’t need to touch you to kill you. He could just make the Earth swallow you. "

 

" I would be too fast for him. " 

 

" Don’t you wish. "

 

" Why are we friends again ? "

 

" Because you can’t live without me " Sehun smiled, slapping Jongin’s butt playfully.

 

" Yeah right. Sure you didn’t sniff too much glue and irredeemably damaged your brain ? " The younger one ignored him and threw his arm around his shoulders.

 

" Why did you fight with The Hulk ? "

 

" Hm, that’s kind of offensive, ‘ The Hulk ’. The guy has a name, you know. " 

 

 

The nickname wasn’t even accurate. Kyungsoo was pulling his energy from the Earth. He wasn’t just a really strong guy. He could do much more than just beat someone up. Jongin had spent a lot of times reading about their gifts when he was in middle school. He found it fascinating, how people could just use their power to do something. When Jongin started high school and heard about Do Kyungsoo, the guy who could break you in half a second, he had to do some research (and Internet was his best friend. Jongin was also kind of a nerd, if you asked Chanyeol). He wasn’t sure at first, if Kyungsoo was just really strong, or if his power was more than that, but the little guy gave him an answer when, a few months into the school year, Jongin saw him bring back a flower to life just by holding the bud between his hands. Jongin thought he might have been lucky to see that, because, as far as he knew, Kyungsoo wasn’t the kind of guy to use his power in public. But again, Kyungsoo wasn’t aware of Jongin’s presence when he did that, the tan guy only passing by the back of the gym to avoid people. It soothed him, watching Kyungsoo bringing the flower back, but after that day, Jongin never really thought about him again, even though he did keep the flower with him and put it somewhere, in the middle of a book, on the shelves in his room. 

 

He would sometimes see him in the hallways, but it didn’t matter. Kyungsoo was just another blurry face in the crowd. 

 

Jongin never really thought about how Kyungsoo helped him feel better that day, during his first year of high school, until he literally walked into him at Jongdae’s party. Kyungsoo was perfect to keep Jongin’s mind away from the voice in his head, the younger realized after he started a fight.

 

 

" Ok ok mom. Why did you fight with Kyungsoo ? " Sehun asked again, emphasizing on the guy’s name. "

 

" He spilt his tray on me "

 

" Yeah, so ? "

 

" It’s been twice "

 

" Again, I don’t think that’s a reason to scream at him like he committed a serious crime ? "

 

" Haha, that’s funny coming from the guy who almost strangled his brother to death because he broke your controller "

 

" That’s not even close to your situation ! "

 

" Oh really ? " Jongin asked, sarcastic. 

 

" Yes ! He’s my brother and he ruins my life everyday ! "

 

 

Jongin didn’t wait for Sehun to finish his explanation before walking into the bus and taking his rightful place against the window. His friend was sulking like a baby when he finally joined him. 

 

 

A strawberry milkshake and a blueberry muffin on one side of the booth, an empty glass of water, two chocolate chip cookies and a vanilla frappe on the other, Chanyeol and Baekhyun were sitting face to face, not pipping a word but enjoying their drinks quietly. It felt good after their little basketball game, and Chanyeol was feeling much more alive now that his body was full of water again. 

 

 

" Why did you say yes ? " Baekhyun suddenly broke the silence, looking up at Chanyeol with his straw between his lips. 

 

" I didn’t actually said yes if you remember correctly. You pulled me by the wrist and I didn’t really had another choice than to follow you "

 

" Yeah, you and I both know it’s not quite true " The blond smile playfully.

 

" Isn’t it ? "

 

" You’re almost a giant Chanyeol, you could have left me there and I wouldn’t have been able to do anything "

 

" You really are obsessed with my height huh " Chanyeol took a bite of his cookie, tilting his head a little. 

 

" I’m pretty sure you should be in the Guinness book " 

 

" You know what I like about you ? You’re never exaggerating. " Baekhyun let out a little laugh, pushing his fringe away from his eyes.

 

" Oh so you like me hm ? " Chanyeol’s cheeks turned red and he looked down to keep his eyes away from the teasing smile Baekhyun was throwing at him.

 

" Shut up. " The giant told him, still not looking up. 

 

" No but really, why did you help me ? " Chanyeol's shoulders relaxed a little, and he took a sip before answering. 

 

" Why not ? "

 

" Because we don’t know each other ? Because you’re bad at Basketball ? Because you had better things to do ? "

 

" I told you I wasn’t busy though " 

 

" Yes, but you could’ve lied. People do that you know ? " Chanyeol shrugged.

 

" You’re Yixing’s friend. "

 

" You barely know him "

 

" Still. He’s a nice guy. And you too seem like a nice guy. And, like you said, I’m almost a giant, so I could’ve beat you to the pulp if you tried anything weird. Or light your ass on fire. That’s an option too. " Baekhyun smiled, looking at Chanyeol’s face, and the giant gave a a toothy grin. 

 

" You wouldn’t light anyone on fire "

 

" I wouldn’t ? " 

 

" Nope. You’re so clumsy you’d probably throw the fireball in the wrong way right into a garbage can " Chanyeol put on an offended look, throwing his napkin into Baekhyun’s face. 

 

" I can’t actually throw fireballs " 

 

" You can’t ? "

 

" Of course not, did you think we were in a manga or something ? "

 

" Then how do you use your fire ? "

 

" I don’t. Or most of the time I use it inside. Like I did during the game. Or at Jongdae’s party, to warm me up. Sometime I do play with some flames, but like I said, it’s too dangerous, and I prefer to play it safe "

 

" You know Chanyeol, nice guys like you do not exist in real life " 

 

" I’m not nice. "

 

" No ? "

 

" No, I’m a badass. " Chanyeol frowned, trying to look really serious. 

 

" Nice and badass aren’t incompatible. I would say they’re synonymous. "

 

" Are they ? "

 

" What’s more badass than someone going out their comfort zone to help people ? " 

 

 

Chanyeol didn’t really have an answer for that and decided eating his cookies was a better option than saying something stupid.

 

After a few minutes of Chanyeol munching, crumbs falling on the table and sticking to his lips, and Baekhyun eating his muffin like a proper human being, the taller thought he would be a good idea to keep talking to the little guy.

 

 

" How did you meet Yixing ? " Baekhyun’s orbs were shining at the mention of his best friend, but the smile he gave Chanyeol wasn’t actually reaching his eyes.

 

" I was thirteen and we met at the hospital. Yixing broke his arm and had to wear a cast for  a month. "

 

" Why were you at the hospital ? " 

 

 

Baekhyun blinked a little, looking down for a second before his eyes were back on Chanyeol and a smile was stretching his lips from side to side. It was pretty obvious that it was fake, but Baekhyun was trying really hard and Chanyeol didn’t know him enough to ask him to put the mask down. With Jongin, he could. But that wasn’t Jongin. This, was a guy he knew for about an hour or two. So Chanyeol smiled back, trying to give him some courage, knowing that he was probably gonna hear a lie. But who was he to judge ?

 

 

" Appendicitis ? " 

 

 

It sounded more like a question than an affirmation, but Chanyeol nodded anyway and Baekhyun’s shoulders seemed to relax at the sight. 

 

 

" So you guys just kept seeing each other when you got out ? "

 

" Basically yeah. Our moms took each other’s infos, and after that we pretty much grew up together. "

 

" That’s nice. It’s too bad he changed school.. "

 

" Well, I trust you to take care of him ? " Chanyeol’s smile grew bigger. 

 

" I will. "

 

" How did you meet Jongdae ? "

 

" Same class, first year of high school. I made the mistake to talk to him and now I’m stuck with the guy. "

 

" Ha, poor you, that must be a hard life indeed "

 

" I know right ? He’s a giant pain in the ass. "

 

" One that you love though " 

 

" Yes. But don’t tell him. He doesn’t need that kind of ego boost, believe me "

 

" Oh, I believe you " Baekhyun ate the last piece of his muffin before rubbing his hands together so the crumble would fall off. " Who’s that Jongin guy Jongdae talked about ? " It took a few seconds for Chanyeol to remember that Jongdae did talk about Jongin in front of Baekhyun during the party.

 

" He’s my best friend, " he smiled, " I met him when I was two years old "

 

" A chubby baby Chanyeol, how cute " The blond offered him a teasing smile, his fingers playing with his straw. Chanyeol ignored the comment.

 

" Jongin was one year old. We haven’t left each other’s side since that day. "

 

" Real childhood friends, I see "

 

" Yeah. I’m lucky I’ve found him "

 

" He’s lucky he’s found you. "

 

" You’re awfully nice too, you know that, Baekhyun ? " Honestly, Chanyeol found it easier to throw another compliment out there than to process what Baekhyun said. 

 

" I do know that. I’m the nicest person around here. " He winked playfully, his eyes shining behind his fringe, and Chanyeol couldn’t help but think that the guy looked really cute. (He slowly started to realize that he used the word cute way too much to describe a teenage boy, but really, the word fit Baekhyun perfectly.) 

 

" And so modest. "

 

" My best quality. "

 

" I can see that indeed. "

 

 

Teasing. If that was what their relationship was going to be based on, Chanyeol was more than willing to dive into it. He liked it. He liked being here with Baekhyun. The guy was funny, nice, and interesting. 

 

 

" Just so you know, Park Chanyeol, I actually can hurt people with light. " Baekhyun said, to correct Chanyeol about what he said earlier. " I could burn your eyes and blind you forever if you were an annoying little shit. "

 

" I’m glad I am not then. "

 

" Yeah, you should be. " Baekhyun took the last sip of his milkshake. " Starring at the sun is pretty hurtful if you do it for too long. "

 

" So you’re the sun ? "

 

" Maybe I am. You’ll never know. " He was wriggling his eyebrows in a ridiculous way, making Chanyeol laugh a little, his lips stretched across his face.

 

" Then I will be careful not to stare. "

 

" Were you planning on staring ? " Baekhyun asked, looking the taller straight in the eyes, and Chanyeol chocked on his own saliva.

 

 

The two boys left the coffee shop after an hour or so. They exchanged phone numbers and Instagram pages, said goodbye, and the taller watched Baekhyun as he walked away from him. 

 

Chanyeol, that day, went home with a smile on his face, his heart light as a feather, and his mind wandering here and there, thinking about basketball, strawberry milkshakes and blueberry muffins. 

 

It didn’t occur to him, as he walked home, that for the first time in his life, his mind didn’t drift away as they were talking.

 

It didn’t occur to him, that he hasn’t, even once, thought about the little mark hiding under his shirt’s sleeve.

 

About the way it was supposed to glow when he would touch his Âme Soeur’s skin. 

 

The way it would finally feel like he was complete. 

 

It didn’t occur to him, that, as Baekhyun and him were talking, he never, at all, thought about touching him, just to be sure.

 

He didn’t occur to him. Until he saw his parents cuddling on the sofa, his dad comfortably leaning against his father’s chest, and his father’s hand tenderly playing with his dad’s hair, their fingers intertwined and his father’s thumb tracing the back of his dad’s hand, sliding peacefully across the end of his glowing mark. 

 

Chanyeol, for the first time in his life, did not think about his mark, only about the fact that they were having fun. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Chapter Text

 

 

There were times when Minseok thought about his future, and there was nothing more in it than Jongdae’s smiles and laughters. The way his boyfriend would joke around, have fun and always be happy. Maybe it was a bit too soon, because Minseok was still in high school; still a teenager who didn’t know much about life. But Minseok knew how much Jongdae meant to him. How important he was.

 

There were other times though, when Minseok wanted to strangle him. Times when Jongdae was getting on his nerves and Minseok felt like he wouldn’t be able to handle it anymore. When Jongdae was just a bit too much. A bit too loud. Just a bit too extra even if it wasn’t the right time to be.

 

There was love. Ton of it. And affection. There was need, and want. But Minseok was still young. He was still trying to figure out what he wanted to do with his life. What was his purpose and what were his goals. And it was hard, sometimes, picturing his future with Jongdae when he couldn’t even see what he was going to do in it.

 

Of course there was all the family prospect. Jongdae being by his side, having a dog, a cat, maybe a bunny. Taking care of each other. Moving in together. Getting married. Having kids. Of course there was a lot to live for, to wait for, and want and dream of. But sometimes, the perspective of being confined in their relationship, without enjoying the life that was given to him if Jongdae wasn’t there, without enjoying the job he would have to do everyday for years, without finding something to live for, something that wasn’t Jongdae, something that had nothing to do with his boyfriend, with their relationship, with their love life. Something that had nothing to do with his Âme Soeur, sometimes, all of that was so suffocating, that Minseok didn’t really know if he would be capable of living with Jongdae.

 

There was love. And there was affection. There was need, there was happiness. But then, there was Minseok’s distress; his anxiety. How could he make Jongdae happy, if himself wasn’t capable of finding something to live for. Something to enjoy when he was alone.

 

In times like this, Minseok couldn’t see a future. Nor could he see a present. He would see nothing. A pitch black canvas behind his eyelids, screaming at him that maybe he wasn’t good enough to be with Jongdae. That maybe they went too fast, too soon. That they were too young, and that they should have wait.

 

In times like this, his fingertips would become so cold that any drop of water nearby would turn into ice. His skin would sometimes turn blue, and his heart would feel heavy. With emptiness.

 

 

" No ! You were supposed to kick him in the face you stupid moron, not fall down like a little bitch ! "

 

 

In times like this, usually, Jongdae’s voice would pull him back, warming up his chest, his hands, his heart.

 

 

" Min ! Your controller isn’t working ! " Jongdae said, his eyes following his character on the screen.

 

 

Minseok’s lips were pulled into a little smile, his eyes tracing his boyfriend’s profile. The dark locks on his forehead, his eyebrows, his cute little nose, the curve of his lips.

 

 

" Dae, my controller is perfectly fine. Maybe you’re the one who’s not working. "

 

" Ugh, shut your mouth, you don’t know nothing. "

 

In times like this, when doubts would eat him up and pull him down, Minseok would realize, upon seeing his boyfriend acting like a child, that maybe he didn’t need to find a purpose. At least not for now. Maybe being here, now, together, was everything that counted.

 

 

" Aren’t you supposed to be Mister Smartypants ? You know, the one who’s always got a clever comeback to offer ? "

 

" Why would I need that with you ? " Jongdae put the controller down, looking at Minseok.

 

" I don’t know, why do you need it with everyone else ? "

 

" Because it’s funny seeing them struggle. "

 

" It’s not funny with me ? "

 

" It is, sometimes. " He smiled, coming closer. " But now is not the time. "

 

 

Minseok thought, sometimes, that Jongdae was still a bit immature. Sure, a single year wasn’t that big of an age gap, but there were times when it felt like they were completely different. Then came those moments. Jongdae, slowly sliding his fingers between his cold ones, his cheek against his chest and kissing the back of his hand. Those times when Jongdae got it. Without a word, without a look. Minseok then remembered; why he wanted to be with him. Not because of their mark, not because it was meant to be. Jongdae was more than just destiny. He was chosen by Minseok, and that, in itself, meant more than anything else.

 

 

" I love you. " Minseok kissed him on the forehead and Jongdae smiled.

 

" I know. "

 

 

 

French sucked.

Or more like homework sucked. Chanyeol should have known by now, but it felt like he discovered how much he hated it all over again, every night, when he was in front of his desk. It’s not that it wasn’t interesting, but his phone was waiting to be picked up and unlocked. A few Instagram notifications were calling him, and Tumblr was just a bit too tempting.

 

Maybe Chanyeol should have try harder, but who was he to deny his phone ? His pencil fell against his notebook, as Chanyeol was grabbing his device. As if he wasn’t supposed to talk about  French Grammar, the giant focused on his screen, his eyes reading the new message an online friend sent him on Instagram.

 

Chanyeol met Luhan a few years ago. He was a pretty easy guy to talk to, and soon enough, the two teenagers became really close. Chanyeol supposed calling Luhan his " Fandom Soulmate " wasn’t an exaggeration. They did love all of the same things.

 

He was typing a message for the Chinese when a new notification appeared on the top of his screen. Chanyeol opened up Jongin’s text to see his answer and send him something back.

 

 

 

 

      

 

 

 

 

 

 

    

 

 

Chanyeol would be lying if he said he didn’t expect Jongin to knock on his window later that night. It was pretty obvious by the way his phone was blowing up that his best friend wanted to know what he meant in his message. To be honest, Chanyeol wasn’t really sure as to why he turned it like that. He knew exactly what it looked like, and it was the opposite of what happened, really. Chanyeol didn’t went out with Baekhyun. He met the guy in the middle of the street, and then he did him a favor. There was nothing more than this.

 

Chanyeol rolled his eyes at his best friend. Why was Jongin insisting on knocking on his window instead of zapping himself inside his room was a mystery for Chanyeol, really. The giant stood up from his bed, putting his phone on the side, and stood up to let his best friend in. A shiver ran down his back, the winter weather enveloping him as soon as the window was open.

 

 

" God, it’s so freaking cold outside ! " Jongin whined, his cheeks red from the cold, and his hands rubbing his arms, seeking for a bit of warmth.

 

" Maybe you should’ve thought about that this morning when you went out ? Why don’t you even have a coat ? "

 

" Because you’re my best friend, and my personal heater, I don’t need no coat "

 

" That’s stupid " Chanyeol said, looking at him dumbfounded because, really ? It’s not like they were together all day long, Chanyeol couldn’t possibly warm him up at anytime.

 

" You’re stupid " Came Jongin’s answer, as the boy put his sport bag on the chair in front of the desk, and went to sit down on his best friend’s bed.

 

" You sure you want me to warm you up ? Because it sure doesn’t sound like you do "

 

" Aaaah, I love you Chanyeol, you’re the best, you’re amazing, can you please help me ? I’m a damsel in distress "

 

 

The giant rolled his eyes once again, sitting next to Jongin and engulfing him in a hug, spreading his heat all around the tan boy. A smile appeared on the blond’s face. Being in Chanyeol’s arms felt familiar. Jongin was home, and there was nothing better than this.

 

 

" Thank you " He whispered, and Chanyeol tightened his arms around him.

 

 

They didn’t move for a few minutes, Jongin enjoying the warmth that his best friend was giving him, and Chanyeol knowing perfectly how much Jongin loved these moments.

 

It took a jab in his stomach for Chanyeol to move away, looking at Jongin with disgust and betrayal in his eyes.

 

 

" What the fuck was that for ?? "

 

" We have to talk Mister I’m-too-cool-to-answer-your-texts. " A smug smile appeared on Chanyeol’s face and he stood up, grabbing his phone on his bedside table. " What the fuck did you mean by ’ I went out with a guy ? ’ "

 

" What do you think ? "

 

" It’s not a game Chanyeol " Jongin hated when his best friend was acting like this. He had enough of Jongdae, they didn’t need another smarty pants.

 

" Isn’t it ? "

 

" Bitch, spill it ! " The blond said, standing up and pulling his phone from Chanyeol’s hands.

 

" Hey ! That’s mine ! "

 

" Who cares ! Just answer the damn question Yeol ! "

 

" What do you even wanna know ? "

 

" Who was it ? And how ? Why ? What did you guys even do ?? "

 

" Well, if I have to be honest.. "

 

" Of course you have to be honest you giant dumbfuck "

 

" I think you’re really mean tonight "

 

" And I think you’re really stupid "

 

" You stink, did you even take a shower after your dance practice ? "

 

" I did, at Sehun’s "

 

" ..What did you guys even do ? " Chanyeol asked, suspicious.

 

" What we always do " Jongin said, " thanks for not coming by the way. "

 

" Dude ! You guys are fucking disgusting ! "

 

" Disgusting for what ? We’re having fun that’s all "

 

" Can’t you have fun with someone who you’re not friend with ? "

 

" I can. I do, actually. But why should we stop ourselves ? We know each other pretty well "

 

" I don’t understand how you guys can look into each other’s eyes after that "

 

" That’s because you’re a poor little virgin who’s never kissed anyone, Chanyeol " Jongin smiled, sitting back on the bed.

 

" I did kiss someone ! "

 

" Your sister doesn’t count "

 

" It wasn’t Yoora ! "

 

" Your parents don’t count either. "

 

 

Chanyeol pouted, walking away from Jongin and to his door.

 

 

" Where are you going ?? "

 

" Away from you "

 

" Chanyeol ! "

 

" It’s dinner time, bring your ass here, I’ll tell you everything after that "

 

 

Jongin was satisfied with the answer and followed his best friend to the kitchen, giving him his phone back.

  

 

He couldn’t really deny the fact that he had fun. He couldn’t pretend either, that he didn’t appreciate the laughs, and the smiles, and the conversation. He had a good time. He felt carefree. He felt good.

 

It had been a long time since he had went out with someone else than his best friend, and Baekhyun almost forgot how it felt like. Building a wall around himself was a good idea, at least he was sure no one was going to hurt him, but it also meant than no one could really make him feel good either. Yixing didn’t like it. The way his friend was keeping everything in and blocking anything out. He thought Baekhyun deserved better. Baekhyun deserved to be happy.

 

 

" Yi’, could you stop ? "

 

" Stop what ? "

 

" I can see you staring at me. "

 

" I’m not staring, I’m thinking "

 

" Same shit Yi’, when you think, you stare "

 

 

Baekhyun was sitting on his bed, a notebook wide open, a pencil in his hand, his legs crossed and his laptop on it, trying really hard to do his homework instead of browsing through Instagram; or even worse, Tumblr. He would probably never come back to his actual work if he went and got lost on the website.

 

 

" Are you gonna see him again ? " The older suddenly asked, nervously playing with his pencil.

 

" I have eyes, so I probably will " Came Baekhyun’s answer, said eyes looking adamantly at his Civilization notes. He didn’t need Yixing to explain what he meant, his best friend couldn’t get his head around the fact that Baekhyun could potentially have made a new friend. He wouldn’t drop the subject since he got there.

 

" You know what I mean " He pouted. Baekhyun didn’t want to humor him. Baekhyun sighed, letting the pencil fall against the paper.

 

" I don’t know Yixing, maybe I will see him again, we exchanged numbers and all. " The brunet started to smile widely, to what Baekhyun lifted his hand to stop him right away. " No Yixing. Not like that. "

 

" Well, you don’t know what could happen "

 

" It’s not about what could happen. It’s about what I want or don’t want to happen. "

 

" Baekhyun.. You cannot just keep everything and everyone away just because you’re scared.. "

 

" Yeah ? Well, watch me " The small guy smiled, grabbing his pencil and closing the discussion definitively.

 

 

Sometimes, Yixing thought it would be a good idea to just make everything disappear from Baekhyun’s mind. From the pain, to the heartbreak, to all the good times they had. Everything that could potentially led him to what he was feeling today. He could, it was in his power. Call it a gift, call it a malediction, but Yixing’s ability to heal was beyond expectation. So the doctors said.

 

He learned it the harsh way, when he tried to make his cousin feel better, by sliding his hands on his chest and soothing his heart. Yixing was still young at the time. He was still a little boy, only wanting to do good, and ending up erasing everything. He didn’t expect, as he felt his magic flowing into his cousin’s chest, that not only he would take the pain away, but also the memories of everything that was even remotely related to the pain. Only when Yixing lifted his little hands, feeling all the sadness twirling inside his little body, and seeing the smile sliding on his cousin’s face, only then, when Yudong seemed so peaceful and happy, Yixing understood. He didn’t need for Yudong to say anything, he just knew. It had made a mess, really. It would probably have been okay, if it wasn’t such a big part of his cousin’s life, but the pain Yixing felt inside his little heart was not only a meaningless, teenager’s heartbreak. It wasn’t just a few tears that would be forgotten as time would go by. Yixing took everything out. All the memories of his cousin’s father. Everything, from the way he smiled, to the way he took his last breath. Yudong wasn’t feeling any pain anymore, because Yudong didn’t have any memory of his father, and the way he left them after being hit by a car.

 

Sometimes, Yixing hated his power. Seeing Yudong living a happy and peaceful life was amazing, but the way his aunt hated him since that day was painful.

 

Looking at Baekhyun though, Yixing would, sometimes, somedays, when he couldn’t handle the idea of his best friend being hurt anymore, think that taking it all away was the solution. He would rapidly slap himself in his mind though, because erasing everything never was the best option.

 

 

" What ya’ thinking now pretty boy ? " Baekhyun’s voice pulled him out of his thoughts, and Yixing looked at him when his best friend put his finger between his eyes to get rid of the frown.

 

" Nothing " Yixing smiled. " Are you done with your homework ? "

 

" Nope. Never am, never will. "

 

" Baekhyun, you need to get this done ! You’re already a week behind on this assignment ! "

 

" Yeah, I know Yixing, why do you think I’m working this hard ? "

 

" You call this working hard ? "

 

" You were the one who talked to me ! " Baekhyun said, taking offense.

 

" Was I ? " The brunet asked, tilting his head a little. Baekhyun scoffed but didn’t say anything. He was used to it. It was just the way Yixing was.

 

" Nevermind " The blond said, " I’m taking a break. " He sat down on the floor, his phone in his right hand, and his legs laid in front of him. " You’ sleeping here tonight ? "

 

" I don’t know, I couldn’t get Mom on the phone so I couldn’t ask her "

 

" Just send her a text "

 

" We’re talking about my mom. "

 

" Ugh, right, she doesn’t know how it works " Baekhyun’s eyes were stuck on his screen, his head wondering if he should actually send a text. " By the way, you haven’t told me. Was the guy nice ? "

 

" What guy ? "

 

" You went to one of your classmate’s house, that guy "

 

" Oh ! Junmyeon ! "

 

" Right, Junmyeon. How was he ? "

 

" He’s really cool ! He told me everything I needed to know about the school, and he gave me his notes, with explanation for what I didn’t understand "

 

" Seems like a nice guy indeed " Baekhyun smiled.

 

" Yes ! He said if I need anything I could go to him, he would be glad to help ! "

 

" I’m happy you found someone this nice " Yixing smiled back.

 

" I think he likes to watch the sky. He’s got a telescope in his room, and a poster with all the constellations on it. It was really pretty. "

 

" Cute. Nerdy, but cute "

 

" Don’t be mean ! "

 

"  Mean ? Me ? Never ! "

 

 

Yixing pouted, his eyes following Baekhyun’s fingers on his screen, trying to understand what his best friend was doing.

 

Baekhyun was still wondering if it was ok, or too risky.

 

After what seems like hours — at least in Baekhyun’s mind — he finally decided that it was worth a try. He knew what to expect anyway.

 

 

   

 

 

" So in fact you didn’t go out with anyone at all ? "

 

" Nah. "

 

 

Chanyeol could see the bored expression on Jongin’s face, and it was worth it, bothering Jongin. Even though his best friend made fun of him earlier.

 

The teenager didn’t expect to receive a text, because Jongin was with him, and he was perfectly aware of the fact that Minseok and Jongdae were together as well, thanks to a pretty cheesy — dared he say cute — picture Jongdae posted on Twitter earlier. He saw Jongin grab his phone before he could react, and a smirk appeared on his best friend’s face.

 

 

" BaekSun huh ? "

 

" What ? " Chanyeol choked on his own saliva and jumped on Jongin to take his phone.

 

" I thought his name was Baekhyun ? " His smirk grew bigger and Chanyeol’s cheeks turned red, looking at the name on his screen.

 

" It is ! It’s just.. It’s just because of something he said earlier ! "

 

" That’s a lame nickname you know ? "

 

" Your face is lame " Answered Chanyeol, opening the text as Jongin sat properly beside him.

 

 

They talked back and forth, Jongin not moving from his spot next to Chanyeol as the giant was answering his new friend.

 

 

" He’s so fucking flirty " Came Jongin’s voice, after Baekhyun answered as soon at the text was delivered.

 

" He’s not, that’s just how he is "

 

" Sure, sure " the blond rolled his eyes " Are you gonna see him again ? "

 

" I don’t know, maybe ? " Chanyeol’s voice was unsure, and Jongin looked at him for a while before saying anything.

 

" The guy seems cool, you should hang out with him more "

 

" We’ll see, I guess.. "

 

" Anyway " Jongin stood up, grabbing his sport bag on the chair. " I’m gonna go now "

 

" Already ? It’s not even 10PM " Chanyeol said, looking at the time on his watch. " You leave pretty late usually.. "

 

" Ooooh, you don’t want me to leave ? You’re gonna miss me too bad ? " Jongin pinched Chanyeol’s cheek and the giant pushed his hand away.

 

" Okay, get the fuck out of here, I don’t like you "

 

" Right, you prefer ‘BaekSun’ " He teased him, a playful smile on his face.

 

" I don’t ! Stop saying stupid shit and leave already ! "

 

" Of course you don’t " Jongin winked and zapped himself out before Chanyeol could answer. He sighed, looking at his phone one more time, the question Baekhyun’s sent still waiting for an answer.    

 

 

There was a knock on Chanyeol’s door, followed a few seconds later by the soft voice of his dad asking if he could come in. After hearing his son’s answer, Mr.Lee Donghae appeared in the frame, sweetly smiling up at Chanyeol. The teenager smiled in return, watching as his dad was closing the door behind him and walking to the bed. There was no particular reason for his dad to be here, it was just something that they did since Chanyeol was a kid. As his father would sometimes work really late to support the family, or sometimes be on business trips, his dad would feel lonely, and Chanyeol and Yoora would miss their father very much. They would huddle up against one another, talking about their day, and enjoying the warmth of their home. It was very different now that Yoora was in college, and that his father went on fewer trips, but they liked to keep the tradition, and so Chanyeol and his dad always made time to be together and have a talk. Sometimes his father would be there as well, but tonight, it seemed like only his dad was joining the party.

 

 

" Jongin’s already gone I see "

 

" Yeah, I don’t really know why.. He didn’t really answer to me when I asked "

 

" I thought this would be all three of us today " Chanyeol shrugged, not really knowing what to say more than this. " How is he feeling ? " He was well aware of Jongin’s state of heart. 

 

" I would love to say that he’s feeling better but I’m not so sure myself.. "

 

" Did something happen ? " His dad frowned, looking concerned. Jongin was like a second son to him.

 

" Well something did happen but I don’t really understand why it can trigger anything in him.. "

 

" I’m listening " Mr. Lee sat on the bed, watching as his son crossed his legs, sitting on the floor.

 

" It doesn’t really make sense.. Because it’s not the first time that it happens, and we both know that Jongin is a really sweet guy right ? " He looked at his dad, waiting for an answer, and all he got was a nod. " Did I ever talk about Do Kyungsoo ? " Chanyeol tilted his head.

 

" Hm, no, not really. I know about him, he’s Do Haneul’s younger son right ? "

 

" I guess ? I don’t really know him honestly.. Appart from all the rumors around him "

 

" Chanyeol, don’t make an opinion of someone based on rumors, you hear me ? "

 

" No, no ! I know dad ! It’s not like that ! I don’t have an opinion on him, really, I just don’t know the guy at all ! "

 

" Hm.. "

 

" He just.. He was at the party, and well.. Jongin wasn’t feeling good at all.. I couldn’t talk about it this weekend because he was here, and he didn’t want to hear about it, we had a silent agreement about that, but Jongin was feeling really down.. "

 

" Chanyeol.. I’m not sure avoiding the subject is the best thing to do.. "

 

" It’s not about avoiding it.. It’s more about talking about it when Jongin feels like it.. "

 

" Which he rarely does "

 

" Dad.. Would you let me finish ? "

 

" Hm hm, go ahead " His father said, apologetic.

 

" So, apparently Kyungsoo ran into Jongin at the party, quite literally, and spilled his glass on him " His dad was still nodding, waiting to hear the rest of the story " I don’t really know why Jongin reacted the way he did, but he was pissed, and when I found him later, he really wasn’t okay.. He.. He cried that night.. I know I wasn’t supposed to hear it or anything, but I did and well.. I didn’t really know what to do other than spread my warmth around him and hold his hand.. "

 

" Sometimes we just need a shoulder to cry on Chanyeol.. I’m sure he appreciated it "

 

" I know he did but that’s not enough.. Listen, today it happened again.. I wasn’t there, but at lunch Kyungsoo spilled his tray on Jongin and apparently he went off on the guy in front of the entire cafeteria.. Jongdae said that Jongin was being a real jerk to Kyungsoo.. That’s not like him to act like that.. Even less for something as ridiculous as that.. "

 

" Did you try to talk about it with Jongin ? "

 

" I did, but all he said was that Kyungsoo really pissed him off and that’s all "

 

" So basically Jongin doesn’t want to talk about it "

 

" Feels like it, yeah.."

 

" And tonight he left earlier without saying why ? "

 

" Yeah, which is really weird since he hates being at home "

 

" You know Chanyeol, maybe Jongin needs someone to push him around a little bit, and to make him lash out. I’m not saying it’s a good thing that he’s acting like that against Kyungsoo, the poor kid didn’t do anything to deserve it, but maybe Jongin just needed an excuse to finally let it all out.."

 

" What do you mean ? "

 

" Jongin has been keeping his feelings in for years now, and I know you don’t talk about it with him because you feel like it’s just going to make him feel even more bad.. But maybe he needs to talk about it.. Maybe he needs to feel bad, so he can finally feel better.. "

 

" So you’re saying I’m the worst friend ever "

 

" No Chanyeol " His dad stood up, and crouched down in front of his son. Even like that, Chanyeol was almost a head taller than him. His little boy grew up way too fast. " You’re an incredible friend. You’ve been by his side everyday since you were 2 years old. You held his hand through everything. Through the good times, to the worse. Anybody would be happy to have you as their friend. " Chanyeol didn’t seem convinced by this. " And even today. You’re trying really hard to understand what is going on inside his head. You’re always trying to make him feel better and at ease. To the point when sometimes I’m actually worried about you, because you don’t let yourself be sad. "

 

" Dad.. "

 

" I understand that you feel like you have the responsibility to be the happy one. You feel like you need to smile everyday because if you don’t then Jongin will never allow himself to feel bad in front of you, but Chanyeol, I don’t think it’s healthy, for neither of you.. Jongin has been going through things that I can’t even imagine. His life hasn’t been easy, but it doesn’t mean you can’t be sad. And it certainly doesn’t mean that you can’t feel bad. "

 

" I can’t be sad Dad, look at the life I have "

 

"  Someone else's misfortune does not minimize yours. Do you think Jongin would like it if he knew that ? "

 

" No.. " Chanyeol looked down, nervously playing with his phone.

 

" You both need to learn how to talk about how you feel baby. If you don’t, then you’re going to implode "

 

" I’m just scared.. "

 

" I know you are.. " The teenager felt his dad’s hand sliding in his hair. " But if Jongin is starting to act like that now, it maybe means that he can’t take it anymore. He kept too much in, and now it’s collapsing. It was bound to happen.. "

 

" I should have said something.. "

 

" You did what you thought was the best for him, and you can’t beat yourself over that okay ? "

 

" Then what am I supposed to do now ? "

 

" Try to talk to him.. But mostly.. Jongin needs to see someone, because you may be his best friend, but there are things you just cannot do "

 

 

Chanyeol knew he was right. To a certain extent, Chanyeol had been avoiding talking about the way Jongin felt, because it meant focusing on the bad, and they both were trying to focus on the good, to forget everything else. Maybe that wasn’t the best option. Maybe it made things worse and now they were witnessing their failure. Chanyeol wasn’t really sure about it anymore. All he knew was that he loved Jongin, and that he was worried about him.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Chapter Text

 

 

 

Jongin knew, as he was listening to his teacher giving them the assignment that he would probably fail. It’s not that he wasn’t working hard enough, but sometimes his head was too full by everything else that his studies wouldn’t feel as important as everyone thought it was. He looked on his left, observing the way Sehun was doodling — what he supposed was a dinosaur — on a piece of paper they were handed to earlier, and he realized that they both would screw up their final exam if they kept going like that. 

 

It was a mystery to see Sehun being a part of the students council because he wasn’t one of the best student out there, but it seemed like he liked working with them, so Jongin never really asked why he would try to be a part of it. 

 

He heard, with relief, the bell screaming at them that it was time to go eat. Sehun was fast, putting his stuff in his backpack without a care in the world, and rushing out of the room after waving at him. Jongin supposed he had something to do. Grabbing his own backpack, he stood up, and made sure he did not forget anything before leaving the room, bowing to the teacher on his way out, and smiling back to Naeun when she waved at him in the hallway.

 

Students were rushing to the cafeteria, which Jongin would understand would it be a Monday — his love for chicken was something else — but today was not chicken day, thus it was a big no for him. As every other Thursdays, Jongin knew that Chanyeol wouldn’t be in the cafeteria because his classes of the day were done and his father was there to cook him a homemade meal. He could go there and join Jongdae and Minseok, but he didn’t feel like it either, so instead of following everyone, he turned the other way and started walking towards the back of the building, where he would find the home economics classroom. He knew the way by heart, having been there a lot of times by now. 

 

He was pulling his phone out of his pocket when he heard a cry coming from behind him, and pushing the device back into his pants, he turned his head. 

 

Jongin sure was not expecting to see Kyungsoo, and he certainly wasn’t expecting to see him wet from head to toe, the books in his left hand now completely useless and his right hand holding onto his locker’s door while a shocked expression was still hanging on his face. The blond frowned a little, looking around him to see who could have done that, but the hallway was now empty, and only Kyungsoo and him were standing there, not moving. 

 

" Fucking hell.. " He heard Kyungsoo say under his breath, as the older guy pushed his now soaked books into his locker, looking down at himself to realize he was completely drenched. " What the fuck just happened.. " 

 

The little guy finally turned his head, from right to left, hoping he would catch a glimpse of his assailant. His eyes met Jongin’s for a few seconds, and the freshman knew at this exact moment that it meant troubles. 

 

" What the fuck was that for ?? " Kyungsoo growled, his dark orbs looking right into Jongin’s soul. He didn’t really know how to react, because the blond had not do anything wrong, but it seemed like he was at the wrong place at the wrong time. He could see Kyungsoo folding his fingers, turning his hands into little fists, and even though Jongin was sure Kyungsoo never would use his powers — because really, people already talked more than enough about him, he wouldn’t give them the pleasure to be what they expected him to be — he still was a bit scared. 

 

" I didn’t do anything ! " Jongin said, hands up to prove himself. 

 

" Yeah right. You’re the only one here but you didn’t do anything. " Kyungsoo was walking toward him, his eyes darker than ever.

 

" I did not ! " Jongin said louder.

 

" And you expect me to believe you because ? " He stopped in front of him, a good meter between them because otherwise he would have to lift his head to really look into Jongin’s eyes, and this wasn’t something he wanted to do.

 

" Because you have not a single proof that I did anything ? " Jongin asked, his voice a bit too sarcastic for Kyungsoo’s tastes. 

 

" Apart from the part where you threw a tantrum like the fucking kid you are in the middle of the cafeteria for no actual reason ? "

 

" I’m sorry what ? No reason ? Are you kidding me ?? " Jongin frowned. The rational part of his brain telling him that Kyungsoo was right. Every other cell of his body screaming at him that he couldn’t lose the mask. 

 

" No I am not fucking kidding you. Who else would do something like that anyway ? And what for ? " Jongin could see his jaw tightening, but he couldn’t stop himself for answering.

 

" I don’t know, doesn’t the entire school hate you actually ? " 

 

He regretted his words as soon as they escaped his mouth, but it was too late, and he couldn’t do anything else than watch the flicker in Kyungsoo’s eyes die a little bit. The sophomore tightened his fists - Jongin knew that without even looking at him - and turned around, walking towards his locker one more time. 

 

The blond wanted to do something. To say sorry. To tell him that he, at least, did not hate him, but Jongin wasn’t moving, his eyes only watching Kyungsoo as he grabbed his tracksuit and walked to the nearest bathroom, leaving a wet trail behind him. Maybe Jongin suddenly wanted to die on the spot, because his body decided, at the very last moment, that he should run after him, and the boy would have done so, if it wasn’t for the little piece of paper that caught his attention in the corner of his eyes. Jongin walked to Kyungsoo’s locker, bending down to grab the note, and read it carefully, clinching his fist as the words entered his brain. 

 

" Stay the fuck away from Jongin, you disgusting monster. "

 

 

Jongdae looked at Minseok as his boyfriend was fiercely re doing his calculus assignment. The senior was supposed to eat his lunch peacefully, but it was too much to ask as he realized, looking inside his backpack for his lunch money, that he had forgot said assignment on his desk at home. Of course it had to be today, Minseok had thought, when he barely had time to do it again, his afternoon being fully packed with classes and soccer practice. His assignment was due for the end of the school day, and Minseok had around an hour to do it completely, and properly. He needed to keep his grades up. 

 

" Do you need some help ? " Jongdae asked, mostly because he wanted to show him his support than to really give him help. Jongdae was a smart kid, but Minseok took advanced calculus classes, as well as being a year older than him. The senior gave him a little smile.

" No, but thank you Dae " Minseok said, his eyes never leaving the page in front of him.

 

Jongdae wished he could help him, but there wasn’t much he could do so he kept eating his lunch, keeping mum so Minseok would be able to concentrate. 

 

Taking a bite of his sandwich, he wasn’t expecting Jongin to appear at their side, his blond hair all disheveled and his eyes dark. It was weird, but Jongdae thought it was smarter not to comment on his appearance. Minseok threw him a look, not happy to be bothered at such time, but Jongin didn’t seem to care and sat down. It was strange, Jongdae thought, to see Jongin being there. It wasn’t like him to show up at lunch when Chanyeol wasn’t there. He would usually not eat with them. At the beginning Jongdae thought maybe he hated them. He eventually realized Jongin just didn’t want to be the third wheel. He offered him a smile, choosing not to open his mouth so Minseok wouldn’t kill him on the spot, but Jongin didn’t seem to read the mood properly.

 

" Hi " The blond guy said, sliding a hand in his hair, and for a second Jongdae actually understood why so many people in this school wanted a bite of this guy. He was no Minseok in his eyes, but it was understandable.

 

" Don’t. " Minseok answered, not even bothering looking up at him one more time, his pencil sliding on the page as his brain was working really hard on the problem in front of him. 

 

" What has got your panties in a twist ? " Jongin frowned. He wasn’t in the mood either.

 

" He forgot his homework at home, and it’s half of his grade so he has to do it again. "

 

 " When do you have to hand it in ? "

 

" The end of the day " Jongdae answered for his boyfriend, grabbing his water bottle. Jongin observed how Minseok put two fingers against the plastic, taking the time to cool down the water for Jongdae as he would always do, even though he was in the middle of a mental breakdown. Love, Jongin thought.

 

" Want me to go fetch it ? " Jongin proposed. He wasn’t in the mood, but Minseok was his friend, and he could see how distressed the senior seemed to be. The pencil stopped moving on the paper, and there was no doubt as to why Jongin suddenly felt so cold. 

 

" Really ? " Minseok asked. His voice was as cold as the air around them, but Jongin knew perfectly that the older wasn’t mad at him. 

 

" Yeah. It would take me five minutes. And I need to get out of here anyway. Even just for a minute. " Jongdae smiled, silently thanking Jongin for his help.

 

" Did you eat ? " Minseok said, his voice sounding concerned, and the air around them becoming warmer as Minseok’s mind wasn’t thinking about all the time he lost, having to do his assignment all over again. 

 

" Have you ? " Jongin dodged the question, standing up and grabbing Jongdae’s dessert. He knew the sophomore couldn’t say anything, with him helping his boyfriend and all.

 

" I did not really have the time no. " Minseok answered, looking at the tray Jongdae grabbed for him.

 

" Then eat. " Jongin grabbed his bag. " Where will I find your homework ? "

 

" In my room, on my desk.. "

 

" Ok, anything else you need ? "

 

" No, only that "

 

" Well, I’ll be back soon. If not, I’ll put everything in your locker, works for you ? "

 

" Yes.. " Minseok stood up, grabbing Jongin’s wrist as the younger was about to leave — he couldn’t decently zapped himself out of the school in the middle of the cafeteria. 

 

" What ? " The blond asked, raising an eyebrow at the senior. 

 

" Is everything okay ? " He was concerned. He knew he probably couldn’t do much to help him, Jongin was really secretive and apart from Chanyeol, there was no one who really knew what had happened to him, but he still wanted to help.

 

" Yes, I’m fine " Jongin smiled, and maybe it was fake, but it was different from all those times Jongin was just pretending to not hear the voices in his head. There was something not quite right, but something that seemed to occupy Jongin’s mind so much that the voices couldn’t really put him down. 

 

" Ok.. Thank you Jongin, it means a lot to me.. "

 

" Yeah, I know. You’ll be fine Minseok, don’t worry about it "

 

Jongin offered them one last smile before leaving the cafeteria again, biting into Jongdae’s piece of cake. Minseok sat down, looking at his boyfriend pushing his tray in front of him.

 

" Eat now, you don’t have so much time left "

 

The older smiled fondly at Jongdae before kissing his cheek. He could see, from the corner of his eyes, how their marks were glowing, and even though he had said plenty of times that they weren’t together because of that soulmate thing, Minseok couldn’t deny the fact that fate had been really good to him. 

 

 

It took only a few seconds for Jongin to zap himself out of the school bathroom right into Minseok’s room. He knew the place, he had been there before, albeit only a few times, but he could easily visualize it. He ended up at the far end of the bedroom, his feet straight on an old pair of jeans that was waiting to be washed; he guessed — he could easily recognize them, and they weren’t Minseok’s. He took an experimental step, carefully watching where he was going because of the mess that Jongdae had quite obviously made. 

 

The papers, as Minseok had said a few minutes before, were waiting to be picked up, sleeping peacefully on one side of the desk and Jongin slid them in his backpack, his eyes wandering on the wall above, pictures of Jongdae and Minseok being their happy self waving at him. 

 

Jongin would never say, to anyone, not even Chanyeol, that Jongdae’s relationship with Minseok was something he was jealous of. Not because of the romance, nor the fact that they seemed happy, but because they had someone who would be there, no matter what. It was stupid, he thought sometimes, he had Chanyeol and even though they weren’t "meant to be", he knew perfectly well that his giant of a best friend — more like his brother really — would never give up on him. 

 

Jongin was a pessimistic person, he would lied if he said he wasn’t, but he wasn’t stupid either and he knew how badly Chanyeol had been waiting for his Âme Soeur, and there was not a single doubt in his soul that if he did find it one day, then Chanyeol would, at the time would call for it, choose them over Jongin, because what else could he do ? 

 

Chanyeol wanted to meet the person he was meant to be with since he was a child, and, well, leaving Jongin would simply be some sort of collateral damage. Jongin knew it, and he wouldn’t say it was okay, but he was ready for it, and who was he to be mad at Chanyeol, after the guy had been with him for so long, and through everything ? He wanted his best friend to be happy, and Chanyeol finding his Âme Soeur, Chanyeol finding the person he would be with for the rest of his life, that alone would make him the happiest. Jongin had accepted it for a long time now, and even though it would feel like he was being stabbed in the guts, he wasn’t going to stop cheering for his best friend. 

 

He didn’t want to be selfish, and even though he knew that looking for his Âme Soeur only because he didn’t want to be alone was selfish for them, Jongin couldn’t really stop himself from hopping that one day he would find the only person that would be by his side until the end.

 

It wasn’t an ideal situation. Nobody in their right mind would choose Jongin as their Âme Soeur, as the person they would live with for the rest of their life, but someone out there was gonna be his special person, and Jongin desperately needed them. He wasn’t certain he would stay alive for long if he was alone. 

 

He took a step back, and after he made sure he had everything, he closed his eyes and disappeared, leaving behind him a dry feeling. 

 

 

There was something in the way he was smiling, Chanyeol thought, something that wasn’t quite right. He had seen it before, during Jongdae’s party, on the very first night they had met. Chanyeol couldn’t put words on what it felt like to see Baekhyun smile, but he was used to it; seeing someone pretending and faking it. He was used to let it slide, and just try to make them feel better. It was an every week occurrence with Jongin. Sometimes, an every day one. He didn’t like it, but there wasn’t a lot that Chanyeol could do to stop it. That’s why, as he was watching Baekhyun pass the school gate, a smile on his face as one of his schoolmate was talking to him, he knew the small boy did not particularly enjoy the conversation. He wasn’t sure what he was supposed to do, because Baekhyun and him weren’t that close, but it was pretty obvious to him that his new friend did not want to be there.

 

Chanyeol took a step towards the school gate, his dark blue uniform contrasting against the dark red’s of the students around him. The color made Baekhyun’s skin look even fairer, but Chanyeol wasn’t one to pay attention to those details, and instead of letting his mind go there, he lifted his hand, waving happily at his new friend. 

 

Baekhyun saw him from the corner of his eyes, and his smile grew bigger, and became genuine. He bowed down to the boy talking to him, and walked up to Chanyeol, holding one strap of his backpack and looking up at the tall boy.

 

" What are you doing here ? " Baekhyun asked, tilting his head.

 

" I thought maybe we could go and grab those cookies as we planned ? "

 

" Did you miss me that much ? " The smaller boy smirked as Chanyeol’s cheeks turned red. He would be lying if he said he didn’t enjoy the way Chanyeol would react to his actions — Yixing would call that flirting, but Yixing knew nothing, Baekhyun thought. 

 

" I miss the cookies actually " A little smile took place on Chanyeol’s face, cute but sassy, and Baekhyun liked it. Baekhyun liked the way Chanyeol had gained confidence since the last time.

 

 " So, how did you know I was done with class at this hour ? " It wasn’t even the end of the day, but that was the beauty of Mondays, Baekhyun was done with class early in the afternoon, and thus could go home and work — of course he wouldn’t, but the thought was there. 

 

" Ha.. I, hum, I asked Yixing.. I- I hope you don’t mind ? " 

 

" Nah it’s okay actually. I’m so hungry I could eat cucumbers. "

 

" Huh ? " Chanyeol tilted his head.

 

" Forget it. Let’s go ? "

 

" Let’s go "  Chanyeol said, his face lighting up as the thought of eating cookies. Baekhyun couldn’t help but to think he was cute, with his big ears pushing past his hair. They were red because of the cold, and Baekhyun wondered for a few seconds if maybe he should put his hands on them to warm them up. He decided against it when he realized it would be weird.

 

" Ok Stalker " He smiled and looked on each side of the road before crossing the street, Chanyeol whining behind him because he was not a stalker

 

 

It felt good, seating inside of the coffee shop, the heater producing just enough heat for Chanyeol’s ears to go back to their natural color, and for Baekhyun’s nose to not fall off his face. They had already ordered and as promised, Baekhyun chose the cookies. Chanyeol on the other hand was feeling a bit more adventurous, and decided to try out the new salted caramel cake that was on the menu. 

 

" How’s Yixing doing ? "

 

" Don’t you talk to him ? "

 

" I do, but he would lie to me if something was not going so well so I have to ask around "

 

" You really are concerned about his well being huh ? " Chanyeol stated more than asked.

 

" Well, he is my best friend. " 

 

" Yeah, I get that.. It just.. kind of feels like.. " Chanyeol didn’t know if he should say it. He didn’t know if it was okay, because he barely knew Baekhyun. Hell, he barely knew Yixing either.

 

" Like what ? " The smaller ask, some crumbs on the corner of his mouth and Chanyeol was tempted to swipe them away.

 

" Hum.. " He looked down at his plate, focusing on the cake instead of watching Baekhyun’s reaction, seeking comfort in the way the fork was pushing through the delicious texture of the pastry. " It feels like you’re scared something might happen to him.. As if something had happened before.. "

 

" Aren’t you a clever boy ? " Baekhyun said, his eyes never leaving Chanyeol, trying to meet his gaze. The tall boy cleared his throat again. " I’m not actually sure I should be saying this, but I guess if I want someone to help me protect him, it would be easier if that person knows what they should be protecting him from "

 

" Huh.. I’m not sure I’m really fit to protect anyone you know ? "

 

" Bullshit. " Baekhyun took a bite of his cookie and slid the back of his hand on his lips. " You’re protecting your best friend. Also, you’re a giant fire breathing dragon. "

 

" A fire breathing dragon ? " Chanyeol raised an eyebrow at him, wondering how much Baekhyun was capable of exaggerating things. 

 

" Yes. You could push anyone away from him if needed. "

 

" I don’t actually want to use my power on people, you know that.. "

 

" I’m not asking you to hurt them though, just scare them ? " He looked at him, his eyes pleading as if it was a death or life situation. 

 

" ..What is it ? " The taller asked, not able to handle Baekhyun’s look much longer. 

 

" You know how Yixing is a Healer, right ? "

 

" I do.. The entire school does to be honest.. I don’t know how it works, but as soon as something happens, it’s immediately spread out around the school.. I wonder if someone has the power of Rumor.. " Chanyeol said, looking serious. Baekhyun smiled.

 

 " You also know that Healers are pretty rare nowadays ? "

 

" Yeah, I heard there were only, like 10 still alive in the entire world.. It’s kinda crazy to know that Yixing is one of them.. " 

 

" Do you know how is power works ? "  Chanyeol seemed to think about it for a few seconds before he shrugged and looked at Baekhyun.

 

" Not really no.. "

 

" Some people think that being a Healer is pretty easy.. Like you just make the pain disappear and that’s it.. The truth is, well for Yixing at least, that when he wants to heal someone, he’s not only make the pain disappear, he makes the cause of the pain leave the body, and the pain then takes its rightful place in Yixing’s."

 

" What ? " Chanyeol frowned. 

 

" Let’s take the flu for example.. If someone was sick, and Yixing was to heal them, he would have to pull the virus out of their body, and let it settle in his "

 

" Wait, does that mean Yixing would fall sick ? " Chanyeol seemed confused.

 

 " Yeah, but with things like flu, or I don’t know, a stomachache ? Well, he wouldn’t really feel it, or he would but for a very short amount of time, like 2 to 3 minutes "

 

" Well, then his power is really shitty isn’t it ? " 

 

" You could say that. Well, in all honesty, it’s not that bad, because he coud heal a pretty rare disease or erase cancer, without feeling much more than a needle piercing though his skin. The real problem comes when the pain is not physical " 

 

" So what happened ? "

 

" Yixing is a nice guy. Probably the nicest guy I know. There were a lot of people asking for his help at school, and he was never one to say no. And it was fine you know ? It was fine because it wasn’t such a big deal. He would heal a guy having a broken wrist when he had a game. A girl with a pimple on her face just before a big date. Nothing much, because that’s what his parents told him. Never too much. Never too big. "

 

" I suppose he didn’t listen to them ? " Chanyeol said, more than asked. It was pretty obvious with the way Baekhyun was telling the story.

 

" He wanted to help people and he didn’t really understand why he should restrain his power when it was his, and it wasn’t hurting anyone. "

 

" Makes sense.. "

 

" It does, but I suppose Yixing forgot how badly it could turn, because it happened once, when he was a kid, and his parents had stopped him ever since. They even thought about forbidding him to use it at all "

 

" What, that’s insane ! " Chanyeol said, taking offense because he knew how restraining his power felt. 

 

" That’s why they didn’t, but it doesn’t change the fact that they just wanted to protect him, and that’s why they told him to never go too big. " Baekhyun took a sip of his milkshake. " Anyway, there was that girl at school who just lost her best friend, and she would sometimes run out of the lessons because she didn’t feel like listening to Maths or History when all she could think about was the fact that she would never see her best friend again. Honestly, it was really painful to watch, it seems like they were really close and she looked devastated, but there was nothing anyone could do.. "

 

" Except Yixing ? "

 

" Yeah.. "

 

 " Did she ask him ? "

 

" At the beginning she did not, but everyone around school would bother Yixing to offer his help to her. Yixing hated saying no, but he knew that he shouldn’t do it. Not only it would mean he was gonna bear her pain, but also, she would have no memory whatsoever of her best friend, and he was pretty sure she did not want that "

 

" But ? "

 

" It all became too much, as one day, a guy found her in the bathroom with her wrist opened and bleeding out. I don’t exactly know what happened, but everyone in school started to accuse Yixing because he should have helped her. "

 

" What ? But that’s bullshit ? "

 

" Hey, you’re preaching to the choir. " 

 

" What happened then ? " Chanyeol was worried.

 

" Yixing finally decided to offer his help and after some time she said yes "

 

" But.. But what about him ? "

 

" Well.. " Baekhyun seemed to hesitate, but he had said so much already, why not say it all. " When he took out the pain, he took out the memory of her best friend, and everything settled in him. It wasn’t bad at the beginning. He would sometime feel down for no reason, but after a few minutes everything would be gone and it would be like nothing ever happened. It took a few weeks for the pain to spread and Yixing, well, I thought I was gonna lose him.. " Chanyeol saw the look on Baekhyun’s face, and for a second, he wanted to grab his hand. " I thought he wasn’t gonna be able to make it, because it seemed so painful Chanyeol.. So, so painful.. "

 

Baekhyun’s eyes were scared. It felt, as Chanyeol was looking at him, that Baekhyun was reliving some of the memories, and Chanyeol couldn’t let that happen. Because he knew that pain. He knew that fear. He lived it. Every time Jongin was down. Every time his best friend would have a breakdown. Chanyeol knew how it felt like, fearing for one’s life, and he could see in Baekhyun’s eyes, in his frown, that the little guy had been so afraid to lose Yixing. 

 

" It wasn’t physical.. He shouldn’t have done that, because the pain was in her brain, it was in her heart, and Yixing knew what it would do to him, but it didn’t stop him, and.. " Chanyeol couldn’t stand it, and his hand found itself warming up Baekhyun’s, giving him the courage he needed to go on. The blond blinked away the tears threatening to escape, and offered him a small smile as he felt Chanyeol’s warmth going through his veins. " It took six months for everything to go back to normal, and even then, Yixing was feeling guilty, because maybe she was happier now, but she was emptier, and that.. That was something even scarier. People at school.. Well they all turned on him.. As if it wasn’t their fault.. As if they hadn’t force him to help her.. "

 

" People can be stupid and mean sometimes.. It probably was easier for them to say he was at fault.. At least they didn’t have to live with the guilt.." 

 

" But Yixing had to, and that was.. That was so painful to watch.. Luhan sometimes had the urge to throw tables at them. Honestly, I would have agreed. "

 

" Luhan ? " Chanyeol tilted his head a little.

 

" Luhan is the third one of our squad I guess ? He’s Chinese, he arrived in Korea when he was like 14 I think ? He’s a telekinetic " 

 

" That’s funny.. I have a friend named Luhan " The taller said, smiling.

 

" You do ? That’s not a really common name in Korea " 

 

" It really isn’t.. "

 

" That’s.. It wouldn’t be…. Would it ? "

 

" Huh ? " Chanyeol seemed confused, and Baekhyun smiled.

 

" It can’t be the same Luhan, right ? " 

 

" Well, " Chanyeol started, " It’s not like I have seen him.. We met on the Internet like 3 years ago "

 

" That’s way too weird, I need you to meet him. "

 

" What ?? " 

 

" What if he is the same ? Then you would finally be able to talk to him in real life " 

 

" I.. I’m not sure I want that.. " And if the way Chanyeol’s ears turned red wasn’t enough for Baekhyun to see how embarrassed he was, if his fingers playing with his sleeve weren’t enough to prove how nervous he was, the way Chanyeol unconsciously pulled on Baekhyun’s hand to absorb the smaller’s warmth was in itself all the blond needed to realize that Chanyeol really did not want to meet him.

 

 " ..Why not though ? " He asked. He had half a mind to pull back his hand because it was now cold, and Chanyeol wasn’t helping anymore, but his smooth skin felt too good, and Baekhyun decided he would rather enjoy the feeling of his skin, cold or not. " Aren’t you guys friends ? "

 

" Yeah but.. " Chanyeol saw the blond cutely tilt his head. " I just.. I’m just scared I’m gonna be so awkward in real life that he’s going to end up hating me " A small laugh left Baekhyun’s mouth, his eyes looking for Chanyeol’s. 

 

" Anyone would be lucky to be your friend, Chanyeol " Baekhyun said, and he could feel the way Chanyeol’s warmth was once again piercing through his skin. " Believe me, I am "

 

Chanyeol, him, found it very endearing, how Baekhyun’s cheeks suddenly turned a bit red, small dots of light running on his cheekbones, as if he suddenly had freckles.