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Running towards you

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“Seven Hyung! Over here!” I heard a voice call from the swarms of people in front of me once I stepped my foot inside the party hall. It was by all means grand, Rika Noona has really outdone herself especially that this was our first RFA party ever.

Finally, I start seeing the person who was calling for me, it was Yoosung our youngest member. His soft violet eyes twinkled, showing how excited he was.

“There are so many people here! I never expected Rika Noona to invite so many guests, especially that it’s our first party!”. “You’re right, we’ve got to celebrate her success properly in the after party”

 I say with a huge grin covering my face. It was hard describing how I felt at that moment, a mixture of pride and happiness filled my long-dead heart. “When was the last time I felt so proud of something, so happy if I dare say?”  I thought to myself as I vaguely followed Yoosung as he was blabbering about how embarrassing it was for him to buy his outfit since his mom insisted she tagged along.

I could finally see white hair and black hair standing in the middle of a huge crowd of women of all ages. “God, as popular as ever these two.” I whispered to myself. Jumin Hyung looks so bored, his eyes looking around for probably assistant Kang, I thought to myself, while Zen Hyung looked like he’s just enjoying the attention and flirting around. The contrast of their expressions was hilarious to me for some reason

Yoosung starts waving his hand again, doing his best to tiptoe to that he can be noticed. “Zen Hyung! Jumin Hyung! Seven Hyung is here!” Both eyes dart towards us as they start making their way immediately through the crowd. “Seven, you are one of the hosts you know, it’s not appropriate to be late.” Jumin Hyung said in his usual stiff, overbearing I might say, tone. “Well, I had to make sure my baby was well fed, forgive me Hyung~” I say cheerfully, and as usual he just decides to ignore me.

 

“I don’t see V Hyung or Rika Noona anywhere though, where are they?” “Rika ssi is busy going around and helping guests, making sure everyone is comfortable until the auction starts” the almost robotic voice comes from behind.

I turn around, with my signature grin, and welcome Jahee ssi “AH! Our capable robot is here!” She shoots me a death stare but doesn’t bother replying, to which I slightly whimper “whoa scary!” I tease a bit more.

“Oh! I remember where V Hyung is! I remember he said he has a special guest coming that he wanted us all to meet” Zen Hyung said after a little bit of thinking. “How did I not hear about this?” Jumin Hyung said, with a questioning look on his face. “Why would you hear about it, trust fund, huh? You’re not the organizer or anything” Zen Hyung said with an obvious scowl ruining his handsome face. Here we go again. “Hyung! Please don’t fight, this is a happy occasion. Though I am curious as to whom V Hyung will be bringing” Yoosung exclaims.

“Oh! I finally found you all!” we finally hear V Hyung’s voice, sounding extremely pleased. As if on cue, we all turn to face him to find him escorting a young woman with him. My breath was caught inside my chest. She looked young, probably 20 or so, but she was just…….gorgeous. How can someone look so perfect! She wasn’t the sexy kind of beautiful, even though she had perfect curves and all, but more like innocent. Yes that’s it! She just looked so precious, I kept thinking that I shouldn’t be even talking to her, after all I was dirty. Her innocent, happy face was complimented with beautiful sleek brown hair with blue, almost unnoticeable, streaks.

On my right, I could feel Zen Hyung’s breath speeding up as well, probably recognizing the beauty in front of him as well. Yoosung, on my left, obviously tensed up, had a little red tint to his cheeks. Next to Yoosung was Jumin Hyung, who was……HOLY SHIT! JUMIN HYUNG IS SMILING!

“I’d like you all to meet Ayumi” V Hyung said when he was finally close enough. Ayumi bowed a little, and started speaking with the most dazzling smile a girl can have “Nice to meet you all, my name is Ayumi”. God, her voice was…..perfect.

“It’s nice to see that the little crybaby is all grown up now” Jumin Hyung says as his smile broadens. “It’s nice to see you too, Jumin Oppa” Ayumi says with a little pout that almost has me squealing because of how cute it was. We all shoot Ayumi and Jumin Hyung confused glances as V Hyung explains “Ayumi is my little sister, we do have different mothers though”

 

“That explains the blue streaks in her hair.” I thought to myself. “My name is Zen, 24, a musical actor” Zen Hyung doesn’t waste any time and starts stretching his hand for a handshake. “Single by the way, I am sure you were wondering” he adds with a wink. She giggles at his flirt “I’ll keep that in mind” she winks back. Damn I thought my heart is going to stop.

“I am Kim Yoosung, I am 21, I am still in university though, I study veterinary medicine” Yoosung says while blushing deeply, his face can easily match my hair. “Ohh, we’re almost the same age, I am 22, and I study medicine too! Human medicine though” She adds with a smile. She must be so smart, how can someone be so perfect. “I go to Harvard in the states, what about you” she asks Yoosung, but before he can answer I interfere “Then we’re the same age then! I am Luciel, you can also call me 707, defender of justice 707, God 707……” “I think I’ll stick with 707” she interrupts as an amused smile forms on her pink lips. “What’s your occupation, Mr 707?” she continues. “Oh, that’s –drum roll please- A SECRET~” I say while flashing my signature 707 smile. She starts giggling and it’s the most beautiful music to my ears, oh god this is bad.  

“Of course you know Jumin, and this is his assistant Kang Jaehee.” V Hyung says as he grabs the shy Jaehee by the wrist to bring her forward. “It’s nice to meet you Ayumi ssi” she say in almost perfect robotic way I actually feel kind of shocked to see how stiff she is. “Heol!” Ayumi exclaims in a low voice. “Don’t be rude, Ayumi” V Hyung says in soft but correcting tone “hurry up and apologize” he really makes a great older brother. “I’m so sorry unnie, it’s very nice to meet you, can I call you unnie?” Ayumi adds with an innocent smile, but I knew she was low key trying to tease her without getting scolded again. Can she get any more perfect?  Jaehee blushed a deep shade of pink and murmured a little “I don’t mind”, not that it would’ve made a difference, and I chuckled to myself.

“Now that introductions are out of the way, should we get going, the auction will begin any minute, and I’m sure Rika is looking for you V” Jumin Hyung said as he offered his arm to Ayumi. She let go of V Hyung’s arm and clung to Jumin Hyung’s almost immediately, allowing V Hyung to lead the way. For some reason, this caused a slight pang in my chest, but I chose to ignore it.

Chapter Text

The party was a success! V Hyung’s photographs were gone almost immediately, it only took about 2 hours for the auction to close off. Afterwards we headed to a karaoke place to have fun and drink in line with the success of our very first RFA party. The mood was perfect and everyone was having so much fun. Apparently, Rika Noona has already met with Ayumi when she travelled with V Hyung to America last year. Not only that, they also got long great. They sat at the front, obviously drunk, and sang together what sounded to be super old 80’s song. Wow they suck I thought to myself as I watched them hazily and continued drinking my beer.

Jaehee had already excused herself quietly some time ago commenting on how late it was and that she has so much piled up work. While Yoosung, who was passed out on my leg, started squirming around mumbling some incomprehensible bullshit, and Zen Hyung just glanced at him pathetically. “Maybe I should head home too and take that guy with me, I’m too worried to let him go home alone.” Zen Hyung sighed while giving Yoosung another pathetic glance. “Yes, that doesn’t sound bad” V Hyung replied with a little smile. “I should probably take Rika and Ayumi home too, they drank enough” the blue haired man continued with a little amused but worried smile, glancing at the sleeping Rika Noona and Ayumi who was giggling like there is no tomorrow. Jumin Hyung, who had his eyes closed all this time, snapped his eyes open at the mention of their names.

 “Should I take Ayumi home with me, it will be hard for you to handle two drunks in a taxi right?” Jumin Hyung offered with a lightly groggy voice, which made me think that he was probably sleeping until now. “That doesn’t seem like a bad idea” V Hyung said while looking a lot more relieved. Why didn’t I offer first? I thought to myself, but quickly dismissed it. You can’t get close to her, remember? IT’S DANGEROUS. What was the point of leaving your brother then?  “Ayumi, you must tell me please, where is the hotel you’re staying at?” V Hyung’s voice snapped me out of my depressing thoughts. “Hotel? What hotel? How*hic*dare you ask me to*hic* go to a hotel?!” Ayumi said while slurring. She was a bad drunk, but I found her cute regardless. “I think the best option would be to take her to my penthouse, you can pick her up in the morning after she sobers up.” Jumin Hyung suggests, with a little smile. I tense up in my place. Why does he want to take her with him to his house, he can easily just book her to a room somewhere in one of C&R hotels. How can he suggest that they stay together all night, AND ALL ALONE?

 “Yah that sound okay, I’ll probably pass by tomorrow before you head to work.”

WHAT? V Hyung? She’s your younger sister, and you’re fine with her staying at a man’s house, all night, while they’re both DRUNK?!

“V Hyung, you can’t! It’s too dangerous!” Zen Hyung speaks up while his trying to lift Yoosung onto his back. I almost sincerely hug him. “Don’t you know, all men are wolves? He might just take the chance then later blame it on being drunk!” he continues. Jumin Hyung, obviously too drunk to keep his cool aura on, looks at Zen Hyung disgustedly and says “what, do you think I am a dog in heat or something? I’d know better than to attack by childhood best friend’s baby sister”.

Before Zen Hyung can reply back, V Hyung says quickly to ease the increasing heat between the two “now, now, both of you. Hyun, you don’t have to worry. Jumin has been helping me take care of Ayumi since we were little, I am sure he doesn’t think of her that way, not when he saw her run around in her diapers all day, right Jumin ?” V Hyung finishes with a broad smile, and I find myself feeling a little jealous. I want to see her in her diapers too, must’ve been adorable. “Yes, well……” Jumin Hyung says with a little cough, cheeks turning a light shade of red.

“Whoa….. WHAT DO YOU MEAN DIAPERS?! I AM A STRONG INDEPENDENT WOMAN”. Everyone just bursts out laughing, and Ayumi just looks around confused as to why everyone is laughing, but decides it’s funny and starts laughing along everyone anyway. “Then shall we get going, are you okay to go home on your own, Luciel?” V Hyung asks me with a soft, gentle smile on his face. I get an idea and before I can stop myself, I start “Jumin Hyung~ take me home with you too, I can’t drive back and my house is far~”

Jumin Hyun’s eyes widen and look at me, but he quickly regains his composure. “Well, I can ask Driver Kim to drive you home after………” “why can’t he just go home with you two~ you were okay with taking Ayumi after all~ or is it because he’s not your best friend’s younger brother ?”

Good God. Zen Hyung can be my angel right now. “Pwease” I beg once more with the best puppy eyes I can muster. “Fine” Jumin Hyung finally says with a sigh and I just draw a silly smile on my face and cheer “yahoo~”.

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The car ride was surprisingly quite. The car was huge. It was a limo that had two fancy leather couches facing each other. Jumin Hyung sat opposite to me and starred out the window the whole way deep in thought, while Ayumi just fell asleep next to Jumin Hyung, resting her back against his shoulders while stretching her legs across the couch. I tried to avoid looking at her as much as I can, after all I was a man, and seeing the girl I liked stretched in front of me with legs all bare like that was ought to me make has some indecent thoughts.

Before long, we reached the pent house. As Driver Kim opened the door for us and I stepped out of the car, I thought to myself on how are we going to go about moving Ayumi inside. Will Jumin Hyung carry her inside? I really don’t want him to touch her uncovered legs just like that though. Do I carry her? Jumin Hyung would never let me. Is he going to ask one of the guards to do it? No that’s even worse than the first option. As my thoughts raced while I stared at both of them inside the car from outside, Jumin Hyung started lightly shacking her shoulders.

“Ayumi, wake up. We arrived, please wake up” he said in such a gentle voice I was clearly taken back and almost let a gasp escape me. She stirs a little, but doesn’t wake up.

“Maybe you should try that in a louder voice, Hyung” I say with a grin “Ayumi~ the defender of justice is here to wake you up, now you GOTTA WAKE UP!” I say the last sentence while shacking her shoulders slightly harder than Jumin Hyung, and she sits up, eyes opening wide. “See, she woke up” I add happily to Jumin Hyung who looks obviously displeased by my ways.

“Where are we?” Ayumi says while holding her head. Jumin Hyung finally steps out of the car and says “my pent house, you and Rika got drunk so I took you with me because Jihyun was busy taking care of Rika, now come on let’s hurry inside or you’re going to catch a cold.” He says the last bit while stretching his hand for her. She takes his hand and gets out the car, than she finally sees me and smiles “Seven Oppa, why are you also here?”

My heart is beating like a drum at this point, I even recall thinking it might be so loud everyone will hear it, and when she says my name, it somehow manages to beat even faster. How can she make my name sound so sweet? I wonder how would it sound if she calls me by my real name.

“Ah! My house is too far, and to be honest I couldn’t just let you be with Jumin Hyung alone, I am the defender of justice after all, and I must protect all pure maidens of the land.” I can feel my face burning with heat. She giggles and releases Jumin Hyung’s hand holds onto my arm instead. “Escort me then, great defender of justice”. My heart stops for a second but I manage to reply back “gladly, oh pure maiden”. We both lead the way, and Jumin Hyung follows after us, and I can feel him blowing a hole in my back.

Once we are inside the pent house, Jumin Hyung dryly tells Ayumi that the guest room upstairs is ready for her. She frees my arms and I almost growl in frustration, then she starts heading upstairs, both our eyes following her. When she's almost at the top she looks back and beams “good night you two”. Then she disappears, and we hear the door unlocking then locking again from upstairs.

Before I can say anything, Jumin Hyung turns around and looks at me sharply “you should watch yourself” he says in his normal monotonic tone, but I can tell there is a hint of anger in voice.

“What do you mean?” I feign ignorance. “Shouldn’t you be careful more, Hyung? I mean, back in the karaoke room, it was too obvious that you wanted to be alone with her, I actually wondered why V Hyung didn’t notice something so obvious. Was it because he was busy with Rika Noona?” I continue while drawing a smirk on my face.

“Yes Luciel, I wanted to be alone with her, and yes it was because I do like her. But contrary to what you’re thinking now, no, it wasn’t because I wanted to do anything to her, I am a gentleman after all.” He lets out a tired sigh at the end of the sentence. “and just so you know, she is well aware of it, after all marriage talks between our parents have been going around for almost years now, even before she heads to America.”

The smile drops from my face and I reply “I didn’t hear anything from neither her nor V Hyung that means nothing is certain” “well what would you know, you only met her today after all”. His reply brings tightness to my chest. "I’ll be sure to back off properly is she asks me to” I reply drawing a smile to my face again.

“But should you really get close to her in the first place. I mean, your job is dangerous, you are a secret agent and a hacker after all. Would your agency allow it? Or would you be willing to put her in such danger? Because even if you are, I am certainly not willing.”

I freeze. He’s right. What am I doing? This is not why I left Saeran alone. I am not allowed happiness, and most certainly I am not safe.

Jumin Hyung finally says “since there is no other guest room, you can sleep in the living room. I asked them to prepare a pillow and a blanket. Make yourself comfortable. Then……”  He leaves me all alone in the room, in trance. I don’t know how long have I been standing there, when I finally get myself together and head towards the living room.

 

Chapter Text

I couldn’t sleep that night. I’m not sure myself if it’s because I wasn’t used to sleeping on the couch, or because of what Jumin Hyung said. I kept tossing and turning, but at some point I was fast asleep.

I started hearing indistinct chatter, and I open my eyes slowly. The light is shining on top of my head and my head is throbbing from the hangover, it takes me a few minutes to adjust to the light. I can finally make sense of the chatter that’s been going on around me.

“Oppa, its fine! I promise. I know you’re busy with work. Besides the client is more important! Yes, Jumin Oppa already gave me some tea to ease my headache before he goes to work.” The voice giggles sweetly and continues “don’t worry Oppa, it’s true that I have been away for a long time, but I can still find my way pretty well. Oh, I think Seven Oppa just woke up, I’ll call you later! Bye!”

“Good morning sunshine!” she smiles dazzlingly. “Good morning, what time is it?” I reply in a groggy voice. “It’s around 11, you really took your time sleeping there didn’t you”.

I let out a muffled growl. Vanderwood is going to kill me. Oh well it’s too late now, might as well enjoy the moment. “Do you need something for your hangover?” she asks, face looking concerned that I haven’t been saying anything. “Yes please, I think my head is going to split into two” I reply while getting off the couch. “But where is Jumin Hyung?” I ask

“Oh, he went ahead to work. He tried to wake you up so that you can leave too, but I convinced him to let you sleep in, you looked pretty tired” she chuckled slightly, already on her way to the kitchen to pour me some tea. I follow her into the kitchen “how considerate of you, I don’t know what I would have done without your graciousness” I say dramatically while giving a little dramatic bow.

“well, you did save my life after all, I couldn’t have imagined staying here all night with a hungry wolf who has a crush on me” she says with a little smile, and before I get the chance to recover from my shock and answer back, she continues “ so, you’re a hacker? That’s why you wouldn’t tell me yesterday what your job was”

My face stiffens. How did she know that, there is no way V Hyung told her, he is the one who made me keep it a secret in the first place. “I listened to your conversation last night, sorry” she answers as if reading my thoughts, beautiful hazel eyes scanning. “So that’s how you knew Jumin Hyung liked you?” I say trying to sound as normal as possible. What if she gets hurt? What if the agency knows and decides they want to eliminate her? After all, Vanderwood made an exception for all the RFA members, but if the boss knew he would most certainly be outraged.

“No, I knew Jumin Oppa liked me years ago. Particularly, when he came to visit me 5 years ago when I first moved to the States, I rejected him though, I thought he would be over me now” she adds with a shrug. She passes me the cup of tea and adds “you don’t have to look so freaked out, I won’t tell anyone about your occupation if that’s what you’re so worried about” she looks me straight in the eyes.

I put down the cup, then hold both her hands and draw them close to my chest. She’s obviously taken aback. “Are you……perhaps…….a mind reader? no wait, are you……..AN ANGEL?!” I say in a pleading tone as if I was in prayer.

She looks at me, eyes wide, for around 30 seconds, then finally she cracks up laughing. “HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAH, what the hell is that! you look like you just found salvation!” . I let go of her hand, and smile myself, feeling proud that I made her laugh so hard.

“So, Luciel Oppa, would you care to give me a ride in that fancy car of yours?” she says, eyes sparkling with anticipation. “Aye aye miss! We have to go pick it up from in front of that karaoke place tough” I add with an annoyed huff. It’s just a drive, it’s not a date or anything, just a friendly drive, and she said she won’t tell anyone, so the agency would never know. This should be ok.

“Well since you helped me so much last night, I decided I want to return the favor. I asked Jumin Oppa to send someone to bring it here. They already got it here hours ago” “you really are an angel! what are we waiting for then! Let’s go!” I almost run.

______________________________________________________________________________

When we got inside the car, I asked her where she wanted to go. She said she hasn’t been here in 5 years and asked me to show her around. Someway how we ended up on the Han River side, eating deokkboki and chatting away.

“When my mom passed away 5 years ago, I was devastated. My dad was never at home and JiHyun Oppa was busy enough at that time, he was in university and he was starting his career as photographer.” She had a sad smile on her face, and I could tell how much her mom had meant to her.

She continued “That’s when my mom’s side of the family started demanding my dad to send me to them to the States, they were already against them getting married, it’s not every day you find a Japanese woman married to a Korean man, but they both were free souls and didn’t listen to anyone after all”

“Oh! That’s why your name is Japanese?” I asked cheerfully, trying to lighten the mood. She looked at me with teary eyes, I wasn’t sure if it was from the cold wind or because she was upset, but my heart broke regardless. Someone so beautiful with such a magnificent smile, why were they even allowed to feel sad.  

“Yes that’s right, my mom always talked about how beautiful I was when I was born, so she called me Ayumi. It means walking beauty” she smiles broadly as she explains, eyes still a little teary

I turn to face her and accidently say my thoughts out loud “Wow! How can someone’s name describe them so accurately”. Ayumi’s face blushes deeply and I in turn feel the heat growing to my cheeks despite the cold wind.

“Uh….uhm….i mean…..”

“……Thank you” her whisper interrupts my stuttering and I look up to see her looking at me with sparkly eyes, all hints of sadness, to my relief, gone.

“So, that’s my story! Do you want to tell me yours?” she gives me that look that’s full anticipation and curiosity. I place a hand on her shoulder and draw a serious look to my face “I will forgive you since it’s been a while since you last came here, but there are 2 things you should never ask about”

Worry draws across her face and she says “what are they?” “Cats and hackers, these things are a no no, Ayumi. We might be the same age, but Oppa here will teach you the ways of life. I have more experience after all” I end with a dramatic sigh

She gapes at me for a second then bursts out laughing. I drop the serious act and join her. Why do I feel like I can forget all my worries when I’m with her, I forget my sad past, my short future, my secret identity, just everything. I can feel like I am Saeyoung again.

We both finish laughing, and she crosses her arms and pouts “what to do you mean Oppa, I’ve been calling you Oppa all this time just in case but, when is your birthday. For all you know, I can be Noona!” I look at her with a smirk “how can you be Noona when you’re so inexperienced in life”.

“C’mon just tell me! When is your birthday! Mine is 28th of September, what about you?” “Like I thought, I am an Oppa after all” I let another dramatic sigh “my birthday is on June 11th” I glance at her to see her reaction, and she just looks so happy at this point. I feel really good, and kind of proud really that I made her smile so much today.

“Then Oppa, can I ask you another question? Don’t worry it’s not about hacking or cats” she adds with a small laugh. “Well at least you got the point. As long as it’s not about these two things, god 707 can answer all your questions.”

She hesitates a little, and then finally speaks “your fight with Jumin Oppa yesterday, can I interpret that as interest in me? I mean, can I interpret it as in……you liking me?”

I am astonished. I try to muster up a reply but nothing is coming into my mind. It’s like everything stopped, including my own brain. I look at her, and she’s looking at me with those honey glazed eye, they make me feel like she can read me like a book inside out.

“I……..uh…” I try to say but she quickly interrupts me. “I feel like I had feelings for you since the moment I laid eyes on you. Everything about you was so……..attractive, and every time I talked to you, I felt like I’m falling in love with you even more and more. And I can’t help but think that everything you said yesterday and your actions indicate that you feel the same way about me, but I don’t want to get ahead of myself here. That’s why please tell me”

I take a deep breath and focus my eyes on hers “if you listened to our fight yesterday, then you know. How dangerous I am. How bad I am for you. It’s true, I felt attracted to you, but it was a mistake. I should never have gotten so close and personal with you, or anyone. If you’re around me you can get hurt, or worse even killed”

“I don’t care” she places a hand on top of mine “I don’t care. I trust that if you love me you’re going to protect me. I won’t ask any questions about your job or try to get involved in anyway. As long as you’re alive and in one piece, you can be there for me to protect me, and in turn I’ll be there for you.”

“no.” I shake her hands off and stand up. “You don’t understand, people die around me. If they find anyone I potentially care for, they’re doomed. I am basically a ticking time bomb. And it’s not going to be dangerous for only you, but for me as well. What if they use you as my weak point? Do you have any idea what that can do to the entire world? It’s true. I was attracted to you, but that attraction is not enough to make risk everything like that.”

I look at her and she looks like she’s on the verge of tears. I feel so stupid right now. I was just thinking about how someone like her shouldn’t be allowed to feel sad, but here I am making her cry now. My heart is screaming at me to hug her and tell her how much I love her, and I’m barely holding myself back. She finally stands up and says” I understand” she suddenly sounds so detached and far away. “You don’t have to worry about driving me back, I know where the hotel I am staying in is”

She runs, and I almost run after her. Instead I just stand there, hands into fist and barely holding back the tears. My phone suddenly starts ringing, and I take it out of my pocket and look at the screen. I sigh when I see the name, then raise the phone to my ears “heya Ms. Vanderwood, miss me”

Yes that’s it, that’s the way it should have been, and the way it should always be.

Chapter Text

“…uciel. Hey Luciel!” I hear V Hyung’s voice calling me from far away, and I snap out of my trance. “Are you ok? You’re suddenly quite” V Hyung feels around until he finds my shoulder and tightly grips it. Blue dull eyes look towards me with a worried expression.

“Yes Hyung I am fine don’t worry. I’m sorry, I just started daydreaming.” I give Hyung a reassuring smile, only to remember that he properly can’t see me.

“What were you thinking about?” V Hyung inquires quietly, as we stand in the line waiting for our turn to check out in the convenience store. “Just remembering that time when I first Ayumi two years ago, remember? At our first RFA party.”

V Hyung faces forward and smiles fondly “ah yes! That was party was amazing! Ayumi looked so pretty that day, and Rika too…..” his voice trails off at the mention of Rika Nona’s name. “I hope the party is a great success this time too. I know Ayumi can pull it off pretty well, but I’m worried about her and the whole hacker ordeal. But she was really happy when she knew you were coming, after all it’s been 8 days since she got trapped inside the apartment”

After that day by the Han River, I never saw Ayumi Again. From what I heard in the chatroom, she went back 5 days later to continue her studies. I busied myself with work so that I wouldn’t think about her, and before I know it, it was already our second RFA party 3 months later. I kept mentally preparing myself to meet her, but she never showed up. When Zen Hyung asked, V Hyung said she was busy with school and just couldn’t make it, but I kind of knew that was a lie from the look Jumin Hyung gave me.

Even though the party was more successful then the first one, everything started going downhill from there. Rika Noona has gotten sick, and it was bad. I don’t know the details, but apparently Rika Noona had hurt V Hyung’s eyes, and now he was practically blind. Soon after, she killed herself. The news hit us all hard. Especially Yoosung who was very close to Rika Noona. Since then I have been pretty much cooped at home, nothing is even motivating me to work anymore except the one thought that it was better than dying and doing nothing. My Life was empty again, the one thing that made my life bearable was them. My family. My RFA family. Even Jumin Hyung, whom my relationship with became a little sour since that fight.

But then one day, everything turned upside down. There was an intruder in Rika Noona’s apartment, and it was none other than Ayumi. Apparently, she came back to Korea to start her internship, and didn’t tell V Hyung because she wanted to keep it as a surprise. When she was looking for a place to stay, someone she doesn’t know texted her and lead her in Rika Noona’s apartment, and hacked into the RFA application and let her in. I was the first one to know that it was her, and as per V Hyung’s instructions, I told her not to tell anyone or send any clues about her identity. According to V Hyung, Jumin was going to freak out and demand she leaves the apartment, but V Hyung said it was too dangerous and that the hacker had properly led her there for a reason. It wouldn’t be a good idea to piss him off, after all he was capable.

Inside the chatroom, I treated Ayumi normally so that no one would suspect anything. She too, treated me well, too well I would say. We had a similar sense of humor and we enjoyed pranking everyone in the chatroom. This was not particularly good, it made the old spark come back to life, and I really didn’t want to lead her on. That’s why outside the chatroom, I’d try to stick with my 707 persona and pretend like nothing ever happened. If she tried to hint something or say something, I’d act like I didn’t understand or notice, and simply brush it off. It was heart breaking listening to the hope in her voice and then listening to it fade again, but it was better that way. After this whole situation is over, everything must go back to normal.

Today, V Hyung and I decided we should go check up on her, and finally break the news to her about what happened to V Hyung and Rika Noona. V Hyung has insisted all this time that it wasn’t necessary for her to know, since she would be worried, but now there wasn’t really a choice.

“Did you tell her I was coming with you?” V Hyung asks as we step out of the store and make our way across the street to the apartment. “Yes, the poor thing was so excited, I’m sure she’ll be really shocked” I sigh loudly. “I know. We might not look like it, but we are pretty close. I used to take care of her with Jumin a lot since her mom used to always travel for concerts.” That fond smile makes its way to V Hyung’s face again.

“I’ll call and let her know that we’re close” I say while taking out my phone to make the call. One ring. Two rings. Three rings. She’s not picking up, usually she does right away.  Worry starts creeping up on me and I give a worried glance to V Hyung, then I remember he can’t see me.

“She’s not picking up” “maybe she’s in the bathroom or something, you know getting ready” V Hyung says in a worried tone. I call again, but this time the line open right away.

“Hello, Ayumi? Why aren’t you picking up! I was worried sick” I scold her. She doesn’t answer, and I’m met with only loud labored breathing from the other side.

“Ayumi? What’s going on?” my face turns serious and I freeze in my tracks. V Hyung stops too, while looking absolutely horrified.

Her voice comes out no louder than a whispered sob, but I can clearly hear the fear and panic in it “seven Oppa…..someone is here……inside the apartment……I’m scared” and the line just cuts off before I can even process what’s going on.

“Luciel! What’s wrong?! What’s happening?! Is Ayumi ok?!” V Hyung shakes my shoulders pleadingly. “Hyung…..someone…….in the apartment…….the security system……..”

Before I can even process what I am saying, a huge explosion goes off at the apartment building right in front of us. My ears are blocked with white noise and I can’t hear anything. My mind is blank. People are running left and right as they bump into me and knock me down. I can’t see where V Hyung is, but as I slowly regain my ability to hear, he’s usually calm and composed voice is the first thing that comes to my ears.

“LUCIEL! WHAT’S GOING ON?! WHERE ARE YOU?! AYUMI! MY AYUMI! MY BABY SISTER!” he’s heart wrenching cries tear my chest apart. I feel like someone just took my heart feels like someone took it out and started stabbing at it one million times. And suddenly it hits me. I feel water hitting my cheeks and I realize I’m crying. She’s dead. Ayumi is dead.

______________________________________________________________________________

“How unfortunate, she was such a beautiful, talented doctor”

“That’s what I thought, how can someone be in the wrong time and place like that.”

“I heard that they couldn’t recognize the body from how badly it was damaged”

“Oh my god, that’s horrible! Was it that burnt?”

Those were among the gossips those who attended the funeral gossiped about. V Hyung and I agreed that we should tell the police that Ayumi was in the apartment because she wanted to visit Rika Noona and she didn’t know she had passed away. We denied knowing anything about the bomb or how it got there. The police were able to get out a few bodies, but most of them were too burnt to tell who’s exactly who. There was a body of 20-something female who was inside the apartment, but as with all the other bodies, she was too burned to tell for sure.

However, all the RFA members knew the truth. At first, everyone was really shocked, confused even. Eventually, everyone decided they shouldn’t play the blame game, V Hyung wasn’t doing well. The death had hit him hard. He spent the first two days in trance. Lifeless dull blue eyes looking to the front. He didn’t speak a word to anyone. The only time I heard his voice was when we were matching our stories for the police questioning, and even than it didn’t sound him. Merely a shell of his past self.

Everyone has helped with the preparations and the funeral, Except Jumin Hyung.  He only showed up on the 2nd day briefly, gave his condolences to Mr. Kim, Ayumi and V Hyung’s father. He completely ignored all the RFA members. Not that I blame him.

As for me, I was in denial all of the time. Zen Hyung tried to ask me about the details on what happened, but I was blank. Everything felt hazy and when I thought about my head felt like it would split into two. The truth didn’t really settle in except on the dreadful morning of the 3rd day. The burial day. The day we bid our farewell to the deceased.

After the casket was lowered into the ground, all the guests quickly left to attend to their daily businesses. Only the RFA members remained, minus Jumin Hyung. Everyone just watched with dismal as V Hyung sobbed and sobbed on top of her grave.

“Ayumi…..My Ayumi. I’m so sorry. Please forgive Oppa. Please come back to me” V Hyung’s cries were heart wringing. It was even worse than when Rika Noona died. Yoosung and Jaehee quietly cry while standing next to him as they watch him, and Zen Hyung kneeled next to him and rubbed his back quietly.

Everyone was so sad, crying even, but why didn’t I feel anything at all? I haven’t shed a single tear since then. Even now as this whole scene unfolds before me, I’m unable to shed a simple tear. I have loved her, that was a fact. But I rejected her, over and over again. Was this my punishment maybe? Was this what I deserved? Maybe that’s why I’m not crying. Because it’s my punishment.

“Get up, JiHyun” a cold voice caught our attention and we all turned towards the voice. Metallic grey eyes pierced through the crowed and met with the lifeless shadow of blue eyes. “Didn’t you hear me, I said get up” the deep voice ordered again, sounding even colder.

V Hyung slowly rises to his feet “Jumin…..” Jumin Hyung starts making his way through to V Hyung then punches him straight in the jaw. The momentum knocks V Hyung backwards, and Yoosung and Jaehee Yelp and take a step back.

Zen Hyung gets up on his feet too “oi, trust fund! What the hell are you doing?!” “Don’t you dare interfere Zen, I’m warning you” Jumin Hyung growls at Zen Hyung and the later backs off a little from shock.

“Why the fuck are you crying, Jihyun? Don’t you dare cry on her grave? YOU did this” Jumin looks at V Hyung who is still lying on the floor. “You lied to me, to everyone, and hid the fact that your sister was being followed by a fuckin hacker! And then you kept her in that apartment, even though you knew! You knew it was dangerous and you knew she could’ve been killed! Yet you kept her in there! You claim that her safety was your top priority but let’s be honest JiHyun. You didn’t care. She always came second. You kept her in there so she can play BAIT. If it’s anyone’s fault that she’s dead, IT’S YOUR GODDAMN FAULT”

Jumin Hyung turns to face me next “and you, don’t think you’re any less innocent. What are you? A robot? A doll? How can you just listen to orders like that? You’re just as guilty as he is. She fuckin LOVED YOU! I travelled to her 5 months ago, and asked her to marry me. But what? She said she can’t get over you. She had met you for ONE DAY, but she was in love with you? And she couldn’t get over you? IS THAT EVEN POSSIBLE?!”

The last bit came as a slap to my face, and I feel something snap inside my head. Before I can even stop myself I let out everything that’s been bottled up inside me “yah that’s right! She loved me and I loved her back! Do you know how many times did she tell me? And how many times did I ignore her or pretend I didn’t notice? 37 fuckin times. But do you know why I did that?! Because I am dangerous. Because she’d die if she was with me. BUT EVEN THAT DOESN’T MATTER BECAUSE SHE DIED BECAUSE OF ME ANYWAY” tears start streaming my face and they won’t stop now that they’re out. I fall to my knees and continue my breakdown.

Jumin Hyung just scoffs and gives me a scornful look “at least you know” he huffs, then walks past me and down the hill.

“Seven Hyung, it wasn’t your fault tha……” “JUST GO” I scream at poor Yoosung who was trying to comfort me, and he just flinches and takes a step backwards.

Chapter Text

Seven Oppa. I’m scared. Save me”

I bolt from my bed, covered in sweat. Again.  It’s that damn dream again. Why can’t I even have a proper sleep for god’s sake?

I don’t remember how long has it been since that vicious day at the cemetery. I haven’t been speaking to anyone, not even my RFA family. All days were the same now.

Wake up. Start working. Snack on some Honey Buddha chips and PhD pepper. Go back to sleep.

Everyone tried to call, but I didn’t have it in me to answer. I couldn’t face them, not after what happened at cemetery. Jumin Hyung was right regardless of how he said it. And everyone would try to make him feel better and tell him it wasn’t his fault. But that was what I least needed right now.

I lift my phone and log in the app anonymously so I can check on everyone. Obviously, the party and all the related activities have been cancelled. And Apparently, V Hyung has gone missing. At first, Jumin Hyung kept up the tough act and said it doesn’t matter to him, and that he would eventually be back, but eventually the worry crept up to him and he started looking for him everywhere.

Similarly, everyone was worried about me too. Yoosung reported that he tried to come to my house yesterday but he couldn’t enter because of my security system. Wow. I didn’t even hear him. I was grateful to have such a caring family, but I was still too ashamed to show my face.

I put my phone down with a heavy sigh, and look back at the computer screen in front of me, getting ready to start working again. Before I can do anything, my phone starts buzzing on the table. I take a glance to see whose calling. It’s V Hyung. I quickly slide my finger across the screen and take the call.

“Hello? V Hyung? Where are you? Are you ok?” I blurt out all these questions, voice a little groggy from the lack of usage.

V Hyung’s voice replies. His voice back to his usual calm nature but regardless it sounds tired. “Luciel. I am glad you’re ok. I need to speak with you. It’s urgent. Can you come to me?” “Yes off course, Hyung! Where are you now?” “I am in a hospital in Incheon, it’s called HanGil” I frown at the last sentence “Hospital? Why are you hurt?” V Hyung chuckles “you’ll know once you get here, Luciel. When you’re here, I am registered under that fake name you once made for me, so ask about that” he says with a sigh and then hangs up. I immediately gather my hoodie and other stuff and head to the door.

______________________________________________________________________________

I walk along the long hospital corridor, looking for room number 415. For some reason, I feel restless. I wonder if V Hyung is ok. I finally find the room I’ve been looking for, and I knock the door with knuckle twice.

V Hyung’s voice comes from behind the door. “Is it you, Luciel. Come on in”. I open the door and walk again, and the scene inside baffles me.

V Hyung’s eyes look fine. He can clearly see me and he even smiles when I step in the room. But what surprises me even more, is the man sitting on the chair near V Hyung’s bed.

“Why do you keep looking at me as if I’m some kind of alien? I, too, have no idea what I was called here for” the CEO’s voice fills the room in an uninterested tone.

“I promise I won’t take much of your time, Jumin. Luciel, please have a seat.” V Hyung says as he gets up from the bed and faces both Jumin Hyung and I.

“Before you get here, I briefed Jumin on your... Err…..history. About what happened with your mother and Saeran” my face stiffens, but I don’t say anything. I thought I was supposed to forget everything about that now.

“Now that that’s out of the way, Luciel…..no…….Saeyoung, I’m sorry” V Hyung says and gives me a deep bow. I can feel my heart stopping, but I manage to stutter “did…..did…..something ha…ppen….to Saeran?”

“I don’t know, but that’s why I called you both here. Rika………is not dead. She never was. She had this mastermind plan that she wanted to bring the whole world to paradise, and she ran away to put her plan into action. I couldn’t tell you all since you all looked up to her so much. She took Saeran with her, and both were missing until now, but I found them.” V Hyung finishes with sigh, and both Jumin Hyung and I are too surprised to talk at this point.

“I also found out that the hacker that lead Ayumi to the apartment was Saeran. Apparently he has been brainwashed as well as many others who joined her cult. Finally…….. ” “then…..Saeran…..did he die…….in that apartment………..along…..her….Ayumi” my voice is cracking. I start hyperventilating and the room is spinning around. My baby brother, my twin, he’s dead, I couldn’t protect him too, everyone is dead. Suddenly, I feel a hand touch mine and I snap out of thoughts.

“Calm down, Saeyoung. He’s alive. Actually, both of them, Saeran and Ayumi, are alive. I made sure of it.”

“What do you mean, Jihyun?” Jumin Hyung finally speaks. “We clearly found her body there, it was even burnt beyond recognition. Don’t you remember?” he ends sarcastically.

“Exactly. Saeran had hacked the security system, so the bomb was under his control. He brought an already dead body, with similar height, weight, and age, and left it inside the apartment. Then he took Ayumi and ran away, and blew up the whole place to cover up his tracks, and fake Ayumi’s death” V Hyung explained, and someway how it felt like a string of hope had appeared and I wasn’t going to let it go.

“But why would he go throw the pain of doing all that? And how did you even know?!” Jumin Hyung resisted. “2 days before the bombing happened, I had found Rika’s organization headquarters. I wanted to meet up with Ayumi one last time before I go, since I thought I might not make it back alive. But apparently, one of Rika’s followers saw me, and reported back to her. That’s why she did it. To give me a warning and make me busy. But I went back there after the funeral, and I saw Saeran there. I had my doubts since his body was never found. That’s when I overheard the plan, and I filled in the remaining parts myself. I came back here to get my eyes fixed, because I’m going to rescue Saeran and Ayumi. But I can’t do it alone, I need your help, both of you.”  

“What are we waiting for then?! Shouldn’t we get going?!” I say filled with new born ambition and hope. Saeran and Ayumi, they were alive. Off course they weren’t safe, but they’re alive. That’s what matters

V Hyung just smiles at me and nods. But Jumin Hyung frowns. “How do I know you’re not lying?” “You don’t Jumin, but if you let your doubts eat at you and you wait for too long, it’s going to be too late” V Hyung says confidentially while looking Jumin Hyung in the eye.

“Then, what’s the plan?” Jumin Hyung finally gives in.  

______________________________________________________________________________

The headquarters were deep in the mountains, almost a 5 hour drive, and V Hyung was scheduled to be released from the hospital today in the evening, so that’s when both V Hyung and I will set off.

“I don’t like this. I want to come along.” Jumin Hyung complained for umpteenth time. “We already discussed this, Jumin. You need to brief all the other members and also wait for our signal to bring backup, you’re the only one who can do this!” V Hyung says while getting dressed.

I snicker at Jumin Hyung “Hyung, you honestly feel like a big baby right now.” he chooses to ignore me and pouts.

Once we’re ready, we hear to the garage. Jumin Hyung’s driver Mr. Kim lightly bows to us and I give a brief bow back. Jumin Hyung walk us to my car and as V Hyung climbs the passenger seat Jumin Hyung reaches out and holds his shoulder “Jihyun, I’m sorry. About that day in the cemetery I mean. I shouldn’t have said.” He murmurs quietly like a little boy apologizing to his parent, and V Hyung’s eyes soften “that’s alright, Jumin. Your words were not false” he smiles at Jumin Hyung and he gives him a little smile as V Hyung gets inside the car, closes the door, and rolls down the window.

“Hey, tomato head.” Jumin Hyung says and I look up, kind of shocked that he’s actually talking to me, he’s been ignoring me since we met after all. “You better bring Ayumi back in one piece, and you better make her happy this time. I am only stepping down for her, not for you. If you ever dare to hurt a fingernail on her, it will be the end of you.”

I smirk at him and say “how nice of you trust fund. But don’t worry, I’ll make her so much in love with me, she wouldn’t even notice you exist anymore, even if you don’t step down”

V Hyung chuckles “well we’ve got to step on it if we want to do that. Let’s go Saeyoung”

I start the engine and drive away. I can see Jumin Hyung in the rear mirror with a complicated expression.

“Saeyoung”

“Yah?”

“After we save Ayumi and Saeran, I think you should quit the agency, throw your 707 and Luciel persona, and live a normal life”

I stare at V Hyung unbelievably.

“You’re not in need of money anymore. And you need to take care of your brother. Don’t do the same mistake twice. Saeran is going to need you badly after this. You must be there for him.”

“But…..how? You know how dangerous this organization is. If I want out, they’ll never leave me. They’ll hunt me down and…..”

“Then why don’t you hunt them down first” an amused smile is now covering V Hyung’s face.

“From what I heard, you’re basically the best hacker in that organization. And you already have enough stuff on them to make them go to jail. If you make these stuff public, they’ll never bother you again. After a while, I’ll take over the driving. You can use your laptop to do exactly that”

I stare at V Hyung in disbelief, then focus my eyes on the road. I manage to get out a soft “thank you”, to which he just smiles and says “don’t thank me, Saeyoung. This is all my fault. And you….deserve happiness”

“I still don’t forgive you for lying to me about Saeran, though”

“You shouldn’t. This whole mess is my fault. I’ll make sure to fix it, but you need to trust me, Saeyoung”

“I would never be in this car if I didn’t trust you, Hyung”

V Hyung smiles at me reassuringly and gives my shoulder a tight squeeze.

______________________________________________________________________________

We finally arrive at Mint eye’s, which is the name of Rika’s organization, headquarters. I get into my stealth mode and prepare my gun, making sure it has enough bullets. V Hyung, who is standing behind me, gives me a worried glance. “I plan to use it only if necessary, please don’t worry Hyung” I try to reassure him, but he still looks distressed regardless.

We sneak into the building without a hitch, and I thank god I was able to hack into the system and disable all the CCTVs earlier.

“According to the map I got, the basement where they keep prisoners is downstairs.” I whisper to V Hyung “great let’s find our way down” V Hyung whispers back. We finally find the stairs and make our way down. My heart is pounding violently against my chest. We finally reach a dark corridor that stretches in front of our eyes, and I try to listen for any sound, but it’s ominously quite.  

A sudden wave of pessimism suddenly washes over me and I’m left feeling uneasy. This place was quite. Too quite. V Hyung and I look at each other and nod, then take a step forward. But just as we start walking, a loud screech of a woman fills the entire corridor, leaving a ringing in the entire place behind it.

I feel horrified, and before I can even stop and think, my legs start moving and I run across the corridor towards the voice, heart sinking to the pit of my stomach. V Hyung follows after me quickly. Another scream fills the chilly passage, but this time it’s a man’s voice. The hall grows silent quickly again.

When we finally reach the source of the voice, I am absolutely aghast. I was preparing myself for the worst, that’s for certain, but the scene before me was even beyond that. My head starts spinning around, and I’m speechless.

What the fuck is this? How sick can a person be to do this?

Chapter Text

I feel unsteady on my feet, and my stomach feels like it was turned upside down. I feel nauseous but, to my relief, I haven’t eaten anything since hours ago. I feel the blood leaving my face and I start shacking violently. I have seen some shit on my job, but this doesn’t even begin to compare.

My brother. My baby brother. My Saeran.

He was crucified across a huge wooden cross, and clothes ripped in what looked like traces of a whip. He was covered in blood, his own blood. Upon closer inspection, I find his hands and feet are actually chained to the cross. Huge iron balls are tied around his neck, probably to weigh him down. i move my to the right to find Ayumi in a similar position, the only difference being that Saeran was passed out, but Ayumi was awake with tears streaming down her face.

Time finally starts moving again, and I feel V Hyung clutch my sleeve and drags me to a dark corner when he overcomes the horrific scene. I hear a voice a thick voice speak, and I finally notice the hooded figure that had Ayumi’s attention all this time. The man had a large iron heated iron rod in his hand, tip flaming a bright orange.

“Please let us go, please. She brainwashed you! There is no such thing as paradise! You are just being used!”

Tssss

The sound of something burning fills the room along with Ayumi’s heart tearing scream, and the room quickly fills with the disgusting smell of burning flesh.

“Don’t you dare speak that way about Savior! If only you accept into your heart everything would stop and you would be much happier! But you’re not even worthy of it! I don’t understand why Savior is so persistent on keeping you and that punk” the masked man mutters in spite.

I feel V Hyung move to attack the man, and before I can process he’s on top of the man punching the life out of him. I quickly run to his side

“Hyung, calm down! He’s brainwashed you need to calm down!”

By the time I manage to stop Hyung the man is already long unconscious, his mask knocked and face covered in blood.

“Oppa! Thank god! Thank god you’re here!” Ayumi cries and we both turn to face her. V Hyung immediately runs to her side.

“I’m so sorry. Oh Ayumi am so so so sorry! I had no idea you were being tortured like that” tears stream down V Hyung’s face as he looks around for ways to set her free.

I suddenly feel self-conscious and I can’t look Ayumi in the face for some reason “I’m glad you’re okay, Ayumi” I murmur while avoiding her gaze. She looks at me and smiles. How can she even smile in such a situation? When she’s in so much pain.

“V Hyung, I’ve got some tools. You can handle Ayumi, and I’ll handle Saeran” V Hyung nods and I move to grab the tools in my backpack. We both start working, and soon both of them are free.

“But, I thought Saeran was brainwashed. Why was he down here with you?” I ask Ayumi as I free Saeran from the last chain around his ankle.

“When he first kidnapped me and they started torturing me, they claimed it was for “salvation”. The supposedly did that for those who were “too corrupt”. I suppose Rika Unnie wanted to take revenge on V Oppa someway how, that’s why she made that new rule.” V Hyung turns and kisses her hair, muttering a low “I’m sorry”.

Ayumi shakes her head “no Oppa, you can’t feel guilty about this. It’s not your fault. Your ex is fuckin crazy that’s all” she sneers at the end of the sentence, her eyes showing a deep shade of hate.

“Anyway. Saeran was against it. He knew her real intentions behind torturing me and He tried to speak with her, telling her that I was innocent from my “corrupt” brother. When she refused to listen, he tried to help me run away, but we got caught. It was obviously an act of defiance for her, so we both ended down here for god knows how long.” A pained expression is now across her face, and I want to run and hold her.

“Can you walk on your own?” V Hyung whispers quietly to Ayumi as he wraps her arm around his neck and helps her stand up. “I think so, but what are we going to do about Saeran?” Ayumi asks weakly barely keeping a steady hold of herself.

“I think I’ve got to carry him on my back” I reply while contemplating other options. It would probably be bad if he sees Hyung and me, he probably still thinks we’re bad people, we shouldn’t wake him up. If I carry him on my back, I’ll be too slow if we’re found, and Ayumi is in a bad condition. Running away would be impossible in that case.

“Maybe we should call Jumin Hyung to get us out of here” I reach my decision and ask V Hyung. “I already sent our signal along with the coordinates 5 minutes ago. But it would take them about 40 minutes to get here……”

As V Hyung finishes his sentence, Suddenly Saeran jerks a little and slowly opens his eyes. I grab his shoulder hastily “Saeran! Saeran, are you ok?! How do you feel? It’s alright, we saved you. It’s all over now” I bombard him with questions, forgetting that he probably thinks I’m evil right now.

Saeran blinks a few times, still looking confused. He looks around the room and immediately pushes me away, gets on his feet, and takes few steps back.

“Wha…..what are you both doing here? Did you…….. come to feed me lies again? To trick m……..e again? So that……….you can abandon me again? I’ll……..I’ll  fuckin kill you if you……get any closer!” he stutters as he messes with his hair and pulls at it, seeming highly unstable. The sight breaks my heart. What did Rika do to my brother for him to turn like that? My sweet, shy, and a little awkward brother. I’ll fuckin kill her for this!

I get up and stand on my feet and try to get a little closer to the broken shell of my brother “no…Saeran ……never! You’ve been brainwashed! Look what she did to you! How she tortured you! Everything she told you is a lie! I never ever abandoned you!” I reach my hand as I get closer slowly and carefully.

“DON’T FUCKIN TOUCH ME! LIAR! DECIEVER! CHEATER! SAVIOR WAS WRONG FOR DOING THAT! BUT SHE NEVER LIED TO ME! BUT YOU DID! AND YOU ABANDONED ME!” he’s screams echo through the long corridor.

“No no! That s not true Saeran you need to listen to me! I would never abandon you!” I reply pleadingly hoping that my voice will reach him some way how. Instead, Saeran turns his face and takes off. It takes me a second, but I take off after him. “SAERAN!  WAIT! IT’S DANGEROUS!”

I can faintly hear V Hyung’s voice calling me from behind, but I completely ignore it as I follow my brother down the hallway and up the stairs. I see a glimpse of Saeran disappearing into one of the rooms, and I follow suit.

As I step into the room, I find myself in what seems to be the main hall of the building. I see people with black hoods and masks, similar to what that guy was wearing, forming a circle at what seemed to be a big throne, muttering some sort of incantation.

I found my eyes glued to who was sitting atop of the throne. Rika’s eyes looked like they were dead, as she had an eerie expression on her extremely white face, blond hair glittering from afar.

I reach for my gun hidden in the back of pants. Oh, how many people did you cause to suffer? Saeran, V Hyung, Ayumi, Yoosung, Jumin Hyung, Zen Hyung, even Jaehee, all these people whom you probably kidnapped from their families, and me. I’m going to enjoy doing this. I think as I take aim at her head.

“Savior please!” Saeran’s voice snaps me to reality, and I lower my gun. I finally see him kneeling in front of her, with hands knotted together like he’s doing some sort of prayer. “Saeran. You need to tell me first how you got out before we can talk. Do we have intruders?” she says in a cold, distant voice, different from the warm loving voice we were all used to. “YOU NEED TO ANSWER ME PLEASE! Have you really been tricking me?! Lying to me?!” Saeran pleads again and tears start streaming down his face.

She gives him an apathetic look before she orders “take him down and tie him up again. Find the intruders and catch them. They probably have the girl now, so you better not let them escape! If you find a blue haired man with them, bring him to me.”

As her followers start moving to obey the orders, Saeran gets up and tries to run, but they corner him quickly. I quickly run to my brother’s side. “Don’t touch him! He’s my brother! I won’t let you touch him!” I stand in front of him, and get out my gun “if you get closer, I’ll shoot you all I swear! I have enough bullets!”

Rika gets up from her throne and looks at me with a crazy smile. “Luciel! You’re here! I’m so glad! Now you can finally join us here in paradise! I’d love to have you as a member of this family!”

“Rika that’s enough!” V Hyung’s voice echoes in the wide, circular room and everyone is looking at him. Rika’s smile widens and she looks even crazier. “You filthy traitor. Just like I thought, you fell for the bait and came here to get your filthy sister. Now I’m going to enjoy torturing you both for eternity. But I guess I’m thankful that you brought Luciel here.”

V Hyung, with Ayumi standing walking closely behind him seemingly too scared to be on her own, walks closer to Rika who has now descended the throne.

“Haven’t you done enough, Rika? Believe it or not, even after everything, I still have feelings for you. It breaks my heart seeing you like this. You need to stop, what you’re doing is not helping people! It’s hurting them!” V Hyung tried to reason with Rika, but I think that she’s long gone at this point, and I honestly feel a little angry at V Hyung for even trying.

Rika stares at him for a few seconds, then orders again “grab them all, and make them stand before, I’m going to judge whether they deserve a second chance in this paradise or not” And as she turns and starts ascending the stairs to her throne again she continues “ Luciel, you better put that gun down, or I’m going to have to hurt them these two right now” she completes her sentence while pointing at Ayumi and V Hyung, and I get no choice but to comply.

All of us, along with Saeran, are now standing in a line in front of the throne, each of us got one of the masked people binding or hands behind our backs. My gun is now in Rika’s hands as she waves it around while studying our faces. Ayumi, who is standing next to me, is slightly shacking, while Saeran, standing on my other side is just blank as he looks down. V Hyung who is standing on Ayumi’s other side, has a dark, unfathomable expression on his face.

Rika finally speaks “V, in normal circumstances, I would kill you and your sister right away. But I will give you a chance. Beg. For the both of you. Beg me to let you in my paradise. To salvage you. To become your savior. Beg me and I’ll forgive your sins this once.”

V Hyung’s eyes widen “Rika, you need to wake up! Can you hear yourself?!” he tries one more time. This was honestly frustrating for me. I knew how much V Hyung had loved Rika, but she’s obviously long gone now. We need to leave now. Ayumi was not doing well, and so was Saeran.

Suddenly, a loud bang was heard from outside, and all the doors in the circular room open at once. Large built men in black suits flood the room. “Everyone hands up, let go of the hostages now” they say as they start pointing their guns at all the hooded people in the room.

Those who were binding our hands quickly let go and run away, and I hear Rika muttering “no…..impossible……that can’t be”, But I don’t really care much. When Saeran’s capturer lets him go, he slowly falls to the ground and I turn in time to catch him. His eyes look empty and he’s mumming something to him, but I can’t really hear it in the middle of the mess. V Hyung and Ayumi get closer and look at Saeran, asking if he’s okay.

Four of the black suited men comes to us and says “we were instructed to guide you outside safely, please come along” “my brother, he’s…..he’s not okay. Can you please help me carry him” I ask the man, worried about Saeran.

The man nods, and he quickly lifts Saeran on his back. We all make our way to one of the doors, and on our way I take a glance at Ayumi to find her looking at me. When our eyes meet, she smiles and gives me hand a squeeze. I give her a smile back and look back at the room one last time. I see the silver glint of my gun from atop the throne, and I realize the gun is pointed towards us. Towards……Ayumi. 

Everything else happens so quickly. Bang. The voice of the gun shot echoes through the room. I quickly push Ayumi out of the way, then I feel pain pierce through my back. I stagger and fall, and I can hear someone screaming. Her face looks hazy and I feel water drops fall on my face. I smile and reach out to her cheeks “thank god you’re safe” I manage to get out. After that, everything turns black. Quiet. Cold.

Chapter Text

I’m laying down on someone’s lap. I look up and see Ayumi. “You look extra beautiful today” I say my thoughts out loud, and she smiles bashfully. She messes with hair a little “the weather is beautiful today, right? I’m glad we decided on this picnic. Saeran looks like he’s having fun too!” she points with her finger towards something.

I sit up and see a huge meadow laid out in front of me, glittering with vibrant green under the clear sky. My eyes follow Ayumi’s finger to find Saeran’s figure from far away, playing catch with what looks to be cute puppy. I smile at the sight before me.

“Hyung, Noona! We’re here!”

We both look behind to see all of our RFA members here. Yoosung is running towards us excitedly, the lunch basket in his hand swaying with his every movement. After Yoosung comes Zen, his smile is so wide his mouth can tear. “Hey Yoosung! Slow down buddy you might trip and fall”

Next comes Jaehee. I give a little laugh when I see her. She looks so much better after she quit. Who knew she can look so bright after looking so robotic like that. Jumin Hyung closely follows behind. He’s wearing, to my surprise, a summer blue shirt with some beige shorts. It fits him better than suits, I think to myself.

“Waah, I’m so jealous! I can’t wait to get married!” Zen smirks as I fully sit up from Ayumi’s lap and give them a little wave. Ayumi giggles bashfully and says “oh lovely Zen! I thought my heart would be devoted to your musicals forever but a certain red head stole it away” she says dramatically as she got up to help Yoosung who was struggling with the picnic blank. “Looks like my jokes won over your charms, Zen Hyung~” I tease Zen Hyung who gives a fake pout in defeat

I turn to Jumin who just got here. “Hyung~ you took off your skin” I pick on my new victim. Jumin Hyung completely ignores me with a scoff as he starts helping Ayumi and Yoosung, but I don’t miss the little smile on his lips.

 “But where is V Hyung?” I realize that he’s missing. “He’s at the bottom of the hill. He said he really liked the scenery so he stopped to take a few picture and told us to go ahead first.” Jaehee is the first to answer. “You look better and better every time I see you, Saeyoung. I’m glad” she continuous with a warm smile. I rub the back of my head embarrassingly “well what can I say. My wife is good at take care of people” I look at her lovingly while she’s now too busy opening the basket and getting out the food.  

Saeran is finally back with the little puppy tagging along while happily wagging its tail. “Oh, everyone is here” he murmurs quietly as a rare smile forms on his lips. “Welcome back Saeran! Do you want a sandwich?” Ayumi offers happily.

I watch as the entire scene in front of my eyes. Who would’ve thought that my life would turn out so perfectly? It feels like a dream.

 A dream? Is this a dream?

The whole scenery slowly starts growing dimmer, the laughter grows further. I reach out my hand to try and catch whatever’s left from my picture perfect dream, but it doesn’t work. I’m left with a feeling of emptiness.

Where am I? What happened to me? Last thing I remember, I was rescuing Saeran and Ayumi from Mint Eye. Than……..than? Than what happened? Jumin Hyung security guards came to help us. We were running out, and there was a gunshot. I pushed Ayumi away and………. Ah…I got shot. Does that mean I’m dead? Am I going to be in this darkness forever?

“NO!” I scream and clutch my head. I’m now shacking vigorously as I hysterically sob and pull my hair. “NO! PLEASE! NO! SOMEONE! SOMEONE SAVE ME! PLEASE!” I fall to my knees as I continue sobbing uncontrollably.

“I’m waiting for you. Please come back to me. I miss you so much Saeyoung. Please give me a second chance and I swear this time I’ll even be more persistent!” I hear the sad plea of a female voice coming from afar and I lift my head. I get to my feet and start running.

“I love you so much. Please come back. Saeran is waiting for you too. He’s all better and clean from the drugs. He knows now that he’s been tricked but he still needs you Saeyoung!” the voice continuous and I run even faster now.

I know this voice. It’s Ayumi’s voice. She says Saeran is okay. Thank god! But she sounds so sad! I don’t want to give her anymore pain. I’ve already done enough. I can’t do this to her after I pushed her away, not when I loved her so so much.

And Saeran. She says he’s getting better, but I need to tell him. I need to tell him how I love him. How sorry I am to him. I never meant to abandon him. How can I abandon my own twin?! I only wanted to make a better life for him. But it’s still my fault that I trusted someone else with him. I am going to make it up for him! Start taking care of him and pampering him! Giving him all the love he needs!

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It has been a little over 3 months now since that incident. Ayumi has recovered physically from that incident, but nightmares still haunted her dreams every night. After the nagging from her older brother, she started seeing a psychiatrist, but she felt like that didn’t really help. She knew what was going to help. She sat by the hospital bed, in front of her lover’s sleeping frame. His hair shined in red as ever, but he looked paler and paler by the day. He looked so peaceful, that she started thinking at some point maybe it was better for him to just sleep forever, he never looked so much in peace like that when he was awake. Always worried. Always putting on a mask. Always depressed. Always lathering in self-loath.

All the doctors in the hospital were starting to lose faith that he’s going to wake up. One even went as far as suggesting non-voluntary euthanasia. All RFA members were furious with the suggestion. Saeran almost chocked the doctor who suggested this, and Jumin even threatened the doctor that he’s going to get fired.

Speaking of Saeran. He was now better thanks to the efforts of all the RFA members. Even though his brother wasn’t there, Saeran was trying his hardest to suppress the anger and doubt lurking inside of him. He has listen to V’s side of the story, and decided to believe him. He says he wants to listen to Saeyoung’s side of the story before making any decisions, but everyone in the RFA knew that internally he has forgiven his dear older brother.

Ayumi moved her hand to cover Saeyoung’s hand. She notes to herself how much his hand got skinnier through the days, and tears start falling like little pearls down her pale cheeks. She closes her eyes.

“I’m waiting for you. Please come back to me. I miss you so much Saeyoung. Please give me a second chance and I swear this time I’ll even be more persistent!” she continuous between sobs, tears now flow freely “I love you so much. Please come back. Saeran is waiting for you too! He’s all better and clean from the drugs. He knows now that he’s been tricked but he still needs you Saeyoung!”

She feels the small movement in between her hands, and she snaps her eyes open. She sees Saeyoung’s eyelashes flutter before he opens his eyes. “God! Oh my god! Thank you! Oh my god thank you so much!” she says while clutching his hand so tightly, tears of happiness replace the sad tears. Saeyoung looks at her, a little confused. He tries to speak but something is blocking his voice. She lets go of his hand “I’m going to call the nurse!” she presses the button on top of the hospital bed. “Everyone is going to be so excited oh my god!” she squeals in happiness as she grabs her cell phone to log into the chatroom.

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When I first open my eyes, I’m greeted by the bright light and disinfectant smell of the hospital. I hear someone faintly talking, and I move my eyes. Ayumi is saying something but I can’t hear her. I can see a little hazy, and I realize I’m missing my glasses. However, I can tell. She’s crying. I try to open my mouth to ask if she was okay, but I recognized that something is stuck down my throat so I can’t really speak. I realize she was holding my hand after she lets go of it, and I immediately miss the warmth. She does something on above me, than fishes for her phone in her pocket. I can hear her a little better now. “Hello? JiHyun Oppa, he’s awake!” please bring Saeran and hurry! I’ll tell everyone on the chatroom!” she finishes as a nurse open the door and walks in

The next few hours are a blur. Nurses and doctors coming in and out. I was carried into another room and few tests were conducted. When I return to my room, I’m a little hazy but I feel more stable than when I first woke up. As the nurses carry me to my bed, the door opens and a doctor comes in, followed by V Hyung, Jumin Hyung, Saeran, and then Ayumi.

The doctor starts speaking “you should still be under the effect of the medications, so you might feel a little unclear, but you’ll be fine. All your tests are coming out positively. The brain damage that happened because of blood lose is slowly getting better too. It’ll take a few weeks but you’ll be better soon” he gives a little bow and turns to leave the room.

Ayumi immediately runs to my side and holds my hand again. “How are you feeling? Can you speak?” she peers at me, worried that I’ve been rather quite. I open my mouth and try to speak, and this time words actually come out “thank god. You look better” I smile weakly, my voice low and raspy. Ayumi’s cheeks blush slightly.

“How dull. You’ve been in a coma for 3 months and this is the first thing you speak?” Jumin Hyung speaks with an annoyed huff, coming closer to stand next to Ayumi. He stretches his hand and rests it on top of my head. The contradiction between his words and his action confuses me, so I look up at him with a questioning look. He gives me a small rare smile in response and says “welcome back, Saeyoung”

I feel someone place a hand on my knee and I look to find V Hyung’s hand “we were worried about. Ayumi practically lived here, and everyone else took shifts to stay with both of you” V Hyung says while patting knee. I move my eyes to look at Saeran, how stood behind V Hyung, trying to make himself as small as possible.

“Saeran, are you ok? Are you hurt anywhere? How are you feeling now?” I ask Saeran, half worried that he would lash out on me and call me a liar again. Instead, he lifts his head, his cheeks shaded in light pink “stupid Hyung, worry about yourself first! I’m…….fine” he finished off weakly while his voice weavers a little, almost letting his tears escape. I chuckle at how cute he is.

The door suddenly flies open, and Zen Hyung, Yoosung, and Jaehee walk in. “HYUNG! YOU’RE AWAKE” Yoosung screams while unconsciously pushing Ayumi away to clutch into my shirt and start sobbing. “Glad to see your as lively as ever, my naive Yoosung~” I tease, and he clutches to me harder.

“Glad to see you’re back on track, Saeyoung. I hate to admit it but it was empty without you” Jaehee gives me a warm smile and I smile back. “Hey hey! Get off of him your gross!” Zen pushes Yoosung’s head than looks at me. “Hey buddy don’t scare us like that! I swear I would take you teasing me any day but never do that again huh?!” Zen Hyung says with a sigh that reminded me of his chat emoji. I giggle at the thought as Zen Hyung tries to pry Yoosung off me again.

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Epilogue

“Crap I’m late again!” I hear someone mutter loudly and I open my eyes. I move to sit in bed and watch Ayumi as she runs around the room like a mad man, gathering all her stuff and throwing it into her bag as puts on her shirt. The sight was always amusing to me to be honest.

“Oops sorry baby I woke you up! Can you help me? I can’t find my lab coat” she searches through the dresser’s drawer. “Didn’t you just leave it at the hospital’s locker and forget there again” I say as I get up from the bed and yawn.

“Oh my god you’re right! I married a genius! Thank you honey!” she moves closer and gives me a small peck on my cheek “have a good day at the store” she says will running out of the room. I hear her put on her shoes than open the door and close it.

As I walk out of the room, scratching my back and thinking what I should eat for breakfast, I hear Saeran walk out of his own room. His hair is a mess and he starts yawning “is she late again?”

“Yup!” I answer as I flop on the couch in the living room. “I don’t understand, how can someone so clumsy like that be a doctor?!” Saeran says as he walks into the kitchen. “Beats me” I shrug my shoulders as I smile to myself.

It’s been about 6 months before we got married. We’re still slowly getting used to it. Saeran doesn’t seem to mind it. The incident in Mint Eye happened about 3 years ago, and it’s now long forgotten.  We’re happy. Off course, life isn’t pink and dandy all the time, but we manage to get through. We’re in love after all. When I look back, Ayumi was running towards me. I kept pushing her away, but she never gave up, she just kept running and running. I was a coward, but she was brave. She saved me. She saved my family. She was my everything. When we first started dating, I told her “it’s now my turn, my turn to start running towards you”

Fin