only fools fall for you | hyunjin sm au | part 62
series: only fools fall for you
pairing: dancer! hyunjin x dancer! reader
fic type: social media au (with few written parts)
genre: college au, angst, enemies to lovers, smut and some fluff
word count: 25K words (i’m ...really sorry lol)
part 62: daisy
warnings: cursing, drinking, a cliche bar brawl, angst, angst, making out, flashback, dirty talk, suggestive tones
a/n: well that was a lot, and i hope you guys love it, and that it matches your expectations. i loved writing this, make sure to get a snack and get comfortable since it’s so long. feel free to put on the playlist in my masterlist if you’d like.
a huge thanks to @ortali for making this beautiful gif for this chapter, and all my other ones! <3
Everything was pink and it was beautiful. It was as if you were floating through air, your head light and fuzzy, warmth in every limb. The music was loud, resonating from every part of your body, liquor flowing through your veins feeling like liquid fire.
Your cheeks hurt from smiling, and your throat hurt from laughing all night, but your lips felt warm.
He was kissing you.
His lips on you were rough, and hot, a stark contrast to how cold his palms were as they slid up your top. Your legs felt like jelly, mind clouded with the scent of vodka, mixed with cigarette smoke. You felt the soreness of a doorknob, digging into your back and you let out a whine.
“What is it?” He asked, teeth lightly grazing your neck and you bit your lip to suppress a moan, feeling it all the way down to your toes.
“This feels nice” You sighed, running your hands through his beautiful blonde hair, nails scraping, tugging at it.
“Yeah, you’re fucking hot” He mumbled, leaving a wet kiss on your collarbone, fingers pulling your top aside as he did so. His other hand slid around your waist, pulling you into him. His hands were harsh, unusual, different, but they were making you feel good, so it didn’t matter. They always made you feel so good. They slid down to your ass, squeezing it through your jeans.
“Fuck, Hyunjin” You breathed, tipping your head back against the door.
The kissing stopped, and his hand dropped from your body.
“Who the hell is Hyunjin?”
“What?” You opened your eyes, staring at the boy.
“My name is Jeonghan” He said, gazing at you.
You stared at him, taking in his appearance. He was nothing like him, except for the blonde hair, which now that you looked at it was already so different, dark streaks of brown running through shades of blonde, slicked back.
Hyunjin wasn’t here. Of course, you should have known that...
Kissing Hyunjin felt different, having him touch you felt different. You’d memorized the shape of his lips on yours, the feel of his body against you, the weight of his large hand around your waist.
But why were you kissing somebody who wasn’t Hyunjin?
The boy stared awkwardly at you.
Your phone buzzed and you stood still, fingers reaching into your too tight jeans pocket to take it out. The screen was too bright and you squinted, head hurting from the sudden onslaught of white light.
It was Hyunjin.
where are you?
“Um, hello?” The boy in front of you said and you looked up at him, blood rushing to your head.
“I have to go” You spoke.
He rolled his eyes “No baby, you don’t”
With that, you felt his mouth on yours again, biting down on your lower lip. He grabbed you harshly, pulling you into him. This wasn’t right. His nails dug into your skin. Your head was spinning. Why weren’t you with Hyunjin right now? Who the hell was this random boy and why did you let him kiss you?
You pulled back, catching your breath, palms against his chest to make sure he didn’t kiss you again “I really need to go”
“Baby, if it’s about before, don’t worry. You can call me whatever you want, if the name Hyunjin turns you on, then call me that” He leaned forward “As long as you’re moaning it, I don’t care”
You blinked at him. It would be so easy to get carried away. He had been making you feel good, after all, it would be so easy to let him take care of you and to touch you, but it wasn’t him. It wasn’t the same. Nobody could even compare to him.
“My boyfriend, he- he’s here”
He raised his brow “You serious?”
Fuck. Hyunjin was going to be so upset. You could just imagine the look on his face when he’d find out, and your heart squeezed in your chest at the thought of making the boy you love sad.
“You have a boyfriend?”
“Yeah…” You exhaled, steadying yourself against the door.
This was just a bad dream. You would never do that to Hyunjin.
Why would you ever need anybody when you had him?
“I need to go” You repeated, turning to step out, and thankfully this time, the slicked blonde boy let you leave. When you stepped back out into the bar, everything was spinning. Your brain hurt. The neon lights which were appealing before were so bright now.
Your mouth felt dirty, and unfamiliar. You wiped it off with the back of your hand, erasing the scent and taste of the strange boy. You don’t even remember going to kiss him.
You stumbled forward and somebody grabbed you.
“Whoa lady, you okay?”
Somebody was talking. To you.
You turned your head, and he looked so worried. He didn’t even know you. You nodded, far too fast, and all the liquid in your tummy felt like it was rising to your throat. You swallowed hard, trying to get a grip on yourself.
“What?” It hurt to speak.
“Are you okay? Do you have someone to take you home?” The strange man asked, his hand on your wrist to steady you, your pulse pounding.
“Um, yeah.” You mumbled, taking a step back, the dizziness rushing to you. Where was he?
“You look like you’re going to pass out, lady”
“I’m fine” You squeaked.
“Do you want me to take you home?” He asked.
His hand curled around your arm, tugging it slightly “Don’t worry. I’ve taken plenty of girls home before”
“Where’s Hyunjin?” You asked him.
“Hyunjin” You repeated, the name clear and familiar on your tongue. The only thing you could think of right now.
“Was he one of the boys you were with?”
You couldn’t even remember the boys you were with.
“No…where are they?” You looked around, your lower lip wobbling. You couldn’t spot any of them. Did they leave you here by yourself?
“They all left, with some girls a while ago”
Why didn’t you go with them?
“You should sit down” Weren’t you already sitting? You looked down at your feet, but that was a bad idea because the floor felt like it was miles away. What was wrong with you?
“I feel sick” You muttered, grabbing onto the thing nearest to you, a table, and you stumbled into the seat too fast, but everything still felt like it was in slow motion. Your limbs didn’t feel like your own. Fuck. You were so fucking drunk. Where were your friends?
That man put a hand on your back, the oddity of his kindness making you feel sicker and less comforted “Do you live on this campus?”
You looked out the window. You could only see a lake, stretching for miles and miles. Where were you? Nervousness overtook you at the strangeness of everything. It was a horrible dream you were plucked into, with no beginning and no end. How else would it explain how you were feeling? Like there was a gaping hole in your memory, in your day, and the only thing you could think of was how you needed him here.
“Can you just…please get me a glass of water?” You ended up saying, voice breaking.
The man went away and you sighed, resting your arms on the table. Your head hurt so much, blinding pain behind your eyes as if you’d stayed up all night. You ran a hand through your hair, pushing it out of your face, strands sticking to your lip gloss, annoying you.
You just needed to breathe.
You buried your head in your hands, staring at the faded white of the table, stains of coke glasses and beer bottles, and breathed. Squeezing your eyes shut. You needed to get a grip.
Everything around you was too quiet, too eerie, like you were miles and miles away from Seoul.
The pink neon sign in front of you was pretty.
‘Don’t forget to say I love you’ It read.
Who would ever forget that? The quote was cliché, but it was the prettiest thing here.
Where was he with your water? Your throat burned.
People were arguing. So loudly.
You breathed in, focusing on just the rapidness of your breath.
The sound of footsteps, and a hand on your shoulder brought you out of your focus.
You looked up.
Your heart squeezed in your chest, so tight you couldn’t breathe.
It was the most beautiful boy in the entire universe.
He knelt down on the floor, crouching down to your height, looking up at you.
A rush went through you. Looking at him making you feel a hundred times higher than all the alcohol you just had.
He was beautiful, and he was looking right at you, his brows raised, eyes laced with worry. The room around you dark, and the pink neon sign about love lighting up his face.
Just like you loved him.
He was in a red beanie and a white cardigan, so soft. It hugged his figure and you wanted it to hug you. He was warm, and safe, and familiar and everything you craved right now.
“Y/N…” He spoke your name, and now you weren’t worried about anything else in the world.
“Yeah?” Your voice didn’t sound like your own. The way he was looking at you like you were the main character of a movie.
He let out a deep breath of relief, bringing his hand to your jaw, tender fingers holding your chin to look at him “I looked everywhere for you”
“I was here the whole time”
His face was so close to you, and he looked so worried. Why was he so worried? It looked like he was going to cry, glossed over pretty eyes.
“Hyunjin…” You spoke, your eyes flickering over his face “Thank you for coming”
“Please” He interrupted, before you could even finish speaking “Don’t…thank me”
Why did he look so sad? His fingers were gentle, and he was touching you so delicately, like he was afraid to hurt you. You leaned further into his touch to let him know that he could never hurt you.
“But I do want to thank you” You said, looking over him.
“You have to go home, Y/N”
“Together, right?” You asked.
His gaze drifted downwards. He wasn’t making eye contact with you. Maybe he was nervous.
He took a pause “No. I’m going to call you a cab, or I’ll call Yeji”
“You won’t take me home?”
He looked up at you, brows furrowed in confusion “You really shouldn’t have gotten yourself so drunk, Y/N. It’s not safe…and it’s not responsible”
He was speaking to you, but you couldn’t focus, like you were drifting in and out of a dream, your grip on reality and your consciousness slipping further away.
In the center of it all was him, like an angel, the soft glow emanating from him, making him stand out across the bizarre surroundings. He was so close, you could count every lash, every freckle, every dot on his face, the softness of his features drowning you in warmth by just looking at him.
God, he was so pretty.
And he was going to leave?
He tilted his head at you, waiting for a reply.
You forgot what he had asked you, you weren’t sure you had even been listening.
So, you kissed him.
Your hands clutched onto the front of his cardigan, fingers grasping onto the soft knit, pulling him close to you.
His mouth left a noise of surprise but not before your kiss swallowed it. He tasted so good, so familiar, so sober, so warm. The opposite of everything you felt right now.
You held him to you like your life depended on it, lips gliding softly against his mouth.
He smelt of cinnamon, strawberry lip gloss, home, everything you loved.
You missed him. You missed this.
You missed him so much.
Had kissing ever felt this good? Your heart skipped a beat as his mouth moved across yours, so tender. You tilted your head to deepen the kiss, cupping his face in your hands now, holding onto his soft cheeks.
Your heart was going to jump out of your chest. He was kissing you back.
Until he wasn’t.
He pulled back, way too fast, way too sudden, and a small part of you wanted to chase after his lips, but you held yourself.
He was breathing heavily, pupils dilated “Y/N. You can’t do that”
“We shouldn’t” He spoke immediately, like it was painful to say. Or maybe it was painful for you to hear. He let out a frustrated groan, moving away. He sat in the chair opposite you, putting clear distance, and you frowned. Why didn’t he want to kiss you?
He was staring at you, confused, his fingers touching his lips as if he couldn’t believe you did that.
“Hyunjin?” You asked.
He looked up at you, before he sighed softly, leaning back in his chair “What are you doing?”
“What do you mean”
He looked around, gesturing to the bar “I mean, what are you doing here?”
“Getting a drink” You smiled, holding your chin in your hands.
“That’s not funny”
He took off his bright red beanie, blonde locks falling across his face messily. He ran a hand through them, pushing them back off his forehead and you were sure he wasn’t a real person.
No real person could look like this, or make you feel this way.
He didn’t seem as amused as you though.
“What are you doing here then?” You demanded.
“You asked me to come” He leaned forward, his hands resting in the middle of the table. You wanted him to hold your hand, to grab it, but he kept his distance. Why wasn’t he holding your hand?
“You can’t just do that, Y/N. We haven’t talked in weeks, and then you text me when you’re absolutely intoxicated” He sighed. The lack of emotion in his voice confused you.
“Why haven’t we talked?” You asked, gazing up at him.
He was deep in thought, running a frustrated hand through his hair.
“I shouldn’t have come” He finally spoke.
“But you’re here now” You leaned forward too, grabbing his hand. Hyunjin looked down at it, at where your hand was wrapped around his, and then back up at you.
His eyes ran over your face, like he was analyzing every bit of you and you felt vulnerable. You felt nice too, to have his attention, have him look at you like this, like you were worthy of it.
Until he pulled his hand back from yours, harshly.
“I don’t know why I am” He answered honestly “Do you need some water?”
“I’m fine” You didn’t need anything, nothing to take away from this moment. It was just you and him, in the middle of the night, in the neon pink lights.
Your palm lay flat on the table, the urge to touch him lingering within your fingers, but he kept his distance, making no move to touch you.
“You seem fine now. When you called me - I thought…I thought you weren’t okay. Where are your friends?”
“I don’t know…”
“Are you feeling sick?”
“I’m great” You smiled.
“Then why did you ask me to come, Y/N?”
“Why wouldn’t I do that?”
Hyunjin sighed again, at your response. He seemed frustrated, and you watched as he ran his finger over his lips again, as if relieving the moment that had just happened.
“How much did you even drink?” He spoke, his tone accusatory.
“Enough to know I want you”
He suddenly stood up, shaking himself out of it. Did you say something wrong? Was he going to leave?
“Are you leaving?”
“God, it was a mistake” He said, finality in his tone “I shouldn’t have come. Seungmin told me. I- Why did you even text me?”
“I don’t know” Your voice was small. A mistake?
“I’m sorry, Y/N. I’m calling Yeji and Minho. They’ll take you home” He was pacing back and forth.
“And you’re just going to go?” You stood up, the chair creaking loudly as you did, hurting your senses.
“I can’t stay here” He bit his lower lip, hands on his hips as he looked at you one last time “Just…don’t go anywhere until they come”
He was walking away now.
He was actually going.
"What the fuck?" You spoke.
This wasn’t what was supposed to happen.
Watching him walk away from you was like a splash of cold water, and a hit of reality. It was like you were pinched awake from the beautiful dream you were in, the high making you forget what the real truth was.
Hyunjin wasn’t your boyfriend.
Hyunjin wasn’t your anything.
He’d broken up with you.
He didn’t want you.
But then why did he come here?
You followed him, legs unsteady but you had to talk to him. He swung open the exit door, heading out onto the wet pavement. The freezing air snapped you further into reality, the look of absolute pain on Hyunjin’s face when he looked at you, as if he couldn’t even stand being near you.
"Hyunjin. What the fuck?" You asked, much louder now.
"Y/N. Just go back inside" He wasn’t even looking at you.
“No, I’m not going to go back inside. What are you even doing?”
“I’m going home, Y/N”
“And you’re going to just leave me here by myself?!”
“No, I’m not. Yeji is on her way here” He answered blankly, not even really answering what you asked.
“Whoa, looks like you found your boyfriend!” A voice said and you snapped your head to see the slicked back blonde from before. Jeonghan, his name was.
Why was he coming here?
He was drunker than even you as he stumbled over, his friend holding him upright, and he was still holding onto a beer bottle, as if he needed to get more drunk than this.
Hyunjin stepped closer to you, as the two boys approached you.
“Who are you?” Hyunjin asked, the edge in his voice slipping through.
Jeonghan looked at Hyunjin and laughed, tipping his head back “I can see why you got us confused, sweetheart. Although I’m pretty sure I kissed you better than him”
Hyunjin’s eyes snapped to yours, something flashing through them that you could only register as hurt, before it was gone in a second.
You hurt him.
“If there’s nothing you need, can you please leave us alone?” Hyunjin spoke, his voice steady again.
“Aww, why would I do that?” He responded.
Hyunjin curled up his fist, taking in a deep breath. The last thing he needed was to deal with a bunch of disrespectful, horny, wasted teenagers, not when he was already dealing with a very drunk and confusing you.
“Because we’re having a conversation” He replied calmly, despite the fire in his veins.
Jeonghan stopped next to you, raising his eyebrows “Whoa! A conversation. Wouldn’t wanna interrupt something as important as that”
Thank god, he was going to go. He looked over at you, a slight smirk on his face “Although, I’d hate to walk away from that sweet ass”
It all happened so fast.
The beer bottle he was holding a second ago, was now on the wet pavement, shards everywhere.
Jeonghan was pushed to the wall in a split second, before you could even register what happened. Hyunjin held him against it by his shirt “Shut the fuck up”
Jeonghan’s eyes were wide, body pressed up against the brick wall “Dude, I’m sorry. I didn’t know you’d get so pissed. I was just making a joke”
“A joke?” Hyunjin repeated, with a chuckle, and it scared you. What was he doing?
The people around you who didn’t care a minute ago, seemed to care now, and everybody’s eyes were on you, at the scene taking place.
Jeonghan’s friend was glaring at Hyunjin “Let go of him, asshole”
Your breath trembled, from the cold, and from what could go wrong, possibilities running through your head a mile a minute.
“Hyunjin, let him go” You spoke, voice faltering.
He didn’t even look at you or acknowledge you, as if you weren’t standing right there addressing him. His grip on Jeonghan’s shirt was tight, their faces inches away and you’d never seen Hyunjin like this. You’d known his hatred your entire life, but you’d never seen him angry. The thought terrified you and you stepped forward “Please, Hyun”
The tension in Hyunjin’s shoulders resolved, dropping down as if just realizing that this was nothing like him. He hated being like this. Guys who got into pissed because of jealousy or ego. What was he even jealous of?
“Just…walk away, man” Then he stepped back.
You stared at him, at the look on his face. What had gotten into him? He was the last person to get into a fight, especially something as pointless as this.
Jeonghan nodded, letting out a breath and looking over at you. Hyunjin stared at him and his friend until they walked away, and then he let out a frustrated groan, looking down.
“What was that?” You asked.
He looked up at you, annoyance and disappointment on his face, as if it was your fault what just happened “The consequences of your actions, Y/N”
“My actions? I’m not the one who almost got into a fucking juvenile fist fight. What the hell is wrong with you?"
He looked around, at the few people around you, who’d gone back to their business after the fight dissipated. They were all drunk; lost in their own worlds, clearly having the time of their lives. You doubt they cared about an argument they’d probably heard a million times. You couldn’t care less.
Hyunjin, on the other hand, obviously cared what they thought, despite having been the one to just cause a scene with the boy.
"Y/N. Don't yell" He said, moving closer to you, as if he was embarrassed by you.
"Then don't fucking walk away from me"
He looked like he hated you, displeasure evident on his features, like he’d done you a favor showing up, a pity that you were so drunk and wasted.
The look on his face hurt your heart.
It was snowing.
The first snow of the season.
The wet cobblestones reflected all the blaring streetlights, and your head hurt. You just wanted to lie down.
"Why are you so upset?" He asked.
"Because I don't understand you. Why did you even come if you were just going to leave? Why did you kiss me?"
"I didn't kiss you. You kissed me!" He cried, just as loud as you now "And I already told you. I wish I didn't come. It was a mistake"
The words stung you.
"A mistake" You laughed "Just like everything we did right?"
He sighed loudly, clearly so bothered by your existence “We are not doing this right now, Y/N”
“Why not? Seems like a perfect time to me”
“No, you’re fucking drunk”
“I’m completely fine, Hyunjin”
“I’m not having this conversation with you, Y/N. Now is not the time or place for this, and you’re clearly not in your right mind”
“’I’m not in the right mind?” You scoffed.
“I am not going to stand here and argue with you, when you’re wasted. It’s not like you’ll remember this tomorrow anyway”
“You better hope I don’t because the only thing I’ll remember, thanks to you, is not the amazing night I had but just how big of an asshole you really are”
He laughed “Amazing night? With what, your head in the toilet seat in a few hours and a bunch of people who didn’t care enough about you to stay? Or oh, was the highlight of your night making out with that piece of shit from before?”
“I can’t believe the nerve on you”
“Well congratulations Y/N. You don’t have to. I’m not part of your life anymore, so go ahead, think whatever the hell you want about me”
You stepped back, his words cutting through you “Why are you being like this?”
Hyunjin let out a scoff, his hands on his hips “I didn’t do anything Y/N. You’re the one that called me here. If you’re so incapable of handling yourself, then maybe just don’t get so fucking wasted and make out with random losers!”
You breathed, trying to not let your anger get the best of you. Everything that had built up over the years that you were mad at him for was pouring out; all your frustration at him, for treating you like this, for breaking your heart, for kissing Seojun, for hurting you all over again, for not wanting you the way you wanted him.
You had to compose yourself because you were about to burst into tears at the way that he wasn’t even looking at you right now “You were right Hyunjin. I’m clearly not in the right mind otherwise I wouldn’t have texted you”
“And you wouldn’t have thrown yourself at me either”
“Fuck you” You stumbled back, your eyes burning with tears “You kissed me back”
Why was this so hard? Why did it felt like your heart was crumbling all over again?
“And I already regret it” He said.
“I hate you” You felt a hot tear crawl down your cheek, a stark contrast to how cold you felt.
He looked away at those words, before turning to lock his gaze with you “I know”
“I fucking hate you”
He let out a tired chuckle, as if all of this was amusing, as if your feelings weren’t shattering by the second “What else is new? It was stupid of me to think things could change. They’re always gonna be the same Y/N”
It was like a dagger through your heart, like the last blow that you needed right now, shreds ripping what was left.
“You should leave”
He looked up at you, at the tears evident on your face and his eyes widened. Did he not expect you to cry? After he’d been such a dick to you?
“Go away Hyunjin”
“Don’t pretend to give a shit” You spoke, rubbing at your cheek with your hand. You were embarrassed now. Crying because of him. How many times? How many times till he stopped hurting you?
You probably looked like shit too. How usual of Hyunjin to come and ruin the perfect night you had.
He, on the other hand, couldn’t have looked better. You hated that. It was as if nothing affected him. Your face was puffy from no sleep of weeks, your eyes sunken, your skin red, your heart broken.
He had never looked better.
You wonder how strong he must be, to not feel the pain that was coursing through every bit of you as you looked at each other.
He was glowing, amongst the falling snow.
It was as if you had been holding him back all this time. You clearly weren’t good enough for him. Never were. Never will be.
Hyunjin was staring at you, and you couldn’t read him. You couldn’t tell what he was thinking. You wish you could crawl into his mind and know what was going on in there. You wish you could figure him out.
What he wanted. What he liked. What he hated.
Maybe then you’d be able to tell why you weren’t it for him. Why couldn’t he just try? Why didn’t he feel the same? What was so different between you and Seojun, you and Chaeyoung, you and Nayeon, or all the other girls who were lucky enough to be someone he cared for?
You wondered what it would feel like to be loved by him. You imagine it would feel like the night at Chan’s house, the way his fingers had grabbed your wrist in the crowd so as to not lose you, the way his eyes had met yours between all your friends, a hint of a smile with the secret you both shared, the way he’d tangled his limbs across yours as you’d fallen asleep, or the way he’d kissed you in bed so tenderly despite how intensely he made love to you.
Well, you could only wonder.
“I’m sorry” He spoke finally.
He was apologizing. He was finally going to realize what he said and did wrong. He was finally going to know how much he hurt you, and he would tell you that he’s sorry.
“I’m sorry Y/N… but I need to go”
But he said none of those things.
“Y/N! Oh my god! I was so worried!” You heard a familiar voice, and you turned to see Yeji running up to you, Minho at her side. You swallowed your sob, wiping away at your cheek.
You were looking at her get closer, but the only thing you could think of was Hyunjin walking away.
You wished a lot of things.
But most of all, you wish you couldn’t feel. At least then you wouldn’t have to feel like this.
You’d gotten it wrong. Again.
You let out a loud sigh, digging your head into your hands, giving up. This was terrible. No matter how many times you did it, you could never get it right. Just like everything else in your life. You ran your fingers through your hair, pulling at the knots and taking it out of its bun.
“What’s wrong, babe?”
You looked up at the voice. Yeji was sat across you, glasses pushed up to her nose, her eyebrows scrunched, lips pulled in a cute pout. The concerned look on her pretty face was almost enough to take away your frustration. Almost.
You’d been spending a lot of your time with Yeji, more than you already used to because well, you did live together and you barely ever left your apartment. She was one of the few people you still felt like hanging out with.
Most of your other friends were a reminder of what used to be, you’d been guilty for having avoided them and cancelling plans for weeks. But you doubt they cared too much about your absence, everybody was stressed, and anxious, with the midterms going on.
“I can’t get it right” You mumbled, sliding the notebook away from you. Yeji put down her coffee carefully, avoiding the plethora of books situated on the little café table.
She leaned over to grab the book “What part do you not get?”
You crossed your arms, head still pounding from your terrible hangover from last night “Anything…I just…it’s so hard”
“Y/N. You’ve done this before so many times. It’s just anatomy. It’s not that difficult”
“I barely attended any classes this semester, I was so busy with…with the dance program and stuff, and now, now I’m gonna have to drop out” You mumbled.
“Okay, the only thing you need to do is relax” Yeji said, reaching across to grab your hand.
“I am so tired of this”
“Y/N. We’re not even halfway done with the midterms. Why don’t you go get a cup of coffee? You need a break” She squeezed your hand, thumb running circles on your knuckles.
“I’ve had three cups of coffee Yeji. I’m still hungover and I’m going to throw up”
“Have one more. Plus, how else will we make use of your cute friend over there?” She smiled, turning over her shoulder to wave at Seonghwa, who stood at the cash counter, scrolling on his phone now due to the lull in customers.
You rolled your eyes “You seem to forget you have a boyfriend”
“And you seem to forget that you are supposed to be over there, flirting with him right now to get us a free cupcake, but you’re still talking to me”
“I am not going to flirt with Seonghwa…”
“You know...maybe you can ask him for help. With anatomy, you know?” She winked.
“I’m going to pretend you didn’t say that”
“Y/N. You know what’s going to make you feel better?”
“Kissing a cute boy, and getting a free cupcake out of it too”
You laughed “Yeji…”
“God, look at you” She smiled, leaning back “You look so good, but that’s when you’re laughing, not when you’re miserable and complaining and sad”
“Wow, thank you Yeji” You rolled your eyes.
“Come on. You know I’m right. As your best friend, I’ve already let you spent too much of your time pining away for this boy. No more”
“Back for another?” Seonghwa grinned, tilting his head at you.
“Yeji thinks I need to relax” You looked at the menu behind him.
“At this point, I would assume you have the menu memorized. You know, since you’ve spent more than half your time here” He teased.
You shrugged “I was checking if there was anything new”
He laughed, throwing his head back “Cute”
You leaned forward, resting your palms on the counter as he went ahead to prepare your usual order. Wooyoung wasn’t working this week, because he was far too busy trying to catch up on every class he’d skipped, and even though you liked spending time with him, a part of you was glad you didn’t have to see him yet. Things felt awkward, after you’d turned down his date, and you felt responsible. Wooyoung seemed to really like you, you had no idea why, but not returning his feelings just made you feel guilty. Like you should like him.
Because you knew what it felt like to be on the other side.
To care so much about someone, and not have them see you the same way.
“Hey, what are you thinking about again?” Seonghwa asked, snapping your attention back to him. He was leaning forward curiously, concern on his face.
“Nothing…the usual” You replied, despite the warmth you felt at the thought that he cared enough to ask.
“You’re a terrible liar”
“All right” He put his hands up in defeat “But you can always talk to me, and don’t worry too much about anatomy. I’m sure you’ll ace it”
“How do you know I have an anatomy test?”
Seonghwa laughed “Maybe because that’s the first thing Yeji told me as soon as you guys came in, and about how I should help you out with it”
You flushed “Are you serious?”
“Don’t worry about it Y/N. I know you’ve only got your heart set on one person”
Your heart dropped.
“So, how much do I owe you?” You dug into your pocket for change.
Seonghwa laughed “Why do you do that?”
“Change the topic every time I bring him up. You don’t have to tiptoe or hide around me, you know. I know the truth”
“I’m not changing the topic. I’m just trying to pay you for the coffee I just ordered” You defended.
He smiled “Since when did you start paying for your coffee?”
You gasped, reaching over to shove him “Shut up! I always pay!”
Seonghwa grabbed your hand, stopping you from hitting him any further “God, Y/N. You are so defensive, maybe you should calm down like Yeji just said”
“And maybe you should get fired for eavesdropping on my conversations” You grumbled, just as the machine dinged, and your coffee was ready.
He handed it to you but before you could grab it, he pulled the cup back again “I’m serious though. You look like you haven’t slept well in weeks. I’m going to have to call Hyunjin to make sure he’s not keeping you up late”
Your smile dropped “Hwa…”
“Nothing” You sighed, pushing your hands into your coat pockets. Your head hurt and you were far too tired to explain it to him.
“You know, you shouldn’t drink so much coffee if you’re hungover. You’ll throw up” He spoke.
“Then who’s going to keep your business running?” You joked “And I’m not going to throw up”
He snorted “I have a lot of customers other than you, sweetheart”
“Really?” You looked around the empty place. Yeji was the only one there, hunched over the mountain of books and you gestured around, a playful smile at your lips “Couldn’t be busier, Hwa!”
The bell at the door dinged.
Seonghwa smiled knowingly at you “You were saying?”
The girl who just entered, laughed loudly, and you spun to see who it was. They both stopped in their tracks when they saw you.
Hyunjin stared at you, the smile falling from his face in a split second, his hand resting on the girl’s back.
He looked at Seonghwa stood at the counter, then back to you, his eyes piercing through you.
“Y/N?” The girl asked, recognition flashing through her eyes.
Hyunjin cleared his throat, his face one of indifference “Come on, Nayeon. Let’s go somewhere else”
“What?” She asked, turning to him.
“Don’t feel like being here today” He replied, before turning to leave.
Your heart plummeted.
When he was gone, you threw up.
You weren’t over it.
No matter how much you tried to act like you were past it, like you were moving on, and completely okay without the boy who broke your heart, no bit of you felt right.
You weren’t sure when your feelings had gotten so intense, because now, everything was him. Everything around you reminded you of him. With the amount of space Hyunjin took up in your mind, you really wanted to hate him.
But you didn’t…and you couldn’t.
You needed a break. It was over, and you needed to make yourself realize that, otherwise you would just be hurting yourself forever.
It was four o clock on a Sunday afternoon, and you were on campus. You sat on the picnic table, legs pulled over the bench as you stared at the video you were studying. It was cold outside, but it was empty, which meant nobody would bother you here.
It was a great distraction, putting all that stress into your upcoming practical. Being in the dance room just reminded you of him, so today you were just going to build the concept of your routine, watching and learning from other dancers’ videos. The end of your midterms was going to be a dance practical, in front of the entire class. The thought of all those people looking at you made you want to puke. For a performer, your confidence right now was definitely on the floor.
You couldn’t study at home, no matter how much you’d tried, and you had no appetite, after your terrible hangover.
God, you were so embarrassed. How could you have kissed him like that? He was right. You did throw yourself at him.
The thought made you shudder, you would never live that down. You’d just handed the last bit of your dignity and self-respect to him on a silver platter. He ended things with you, and you got wasted and kissed him. You were never going to drink again.
You pushed back your hair, the cold air biting at your skin, and you pulled your cap further down over your ears. You focused on the video, your phone held in your lap. You would be imitating a performance you’d seen, trying to recreate it best you could. Mimicking dance was always so tricky, every dancer had a style of their own, and you could never perfectly replicate it, but you could try.
Mrs. Park in high school had always told you that you shouldn’t mimic, that you should come up with a routine of your own, but you hardly felt talented or qualified enough to choreograph. All you were used to was following instructions.
You observed the performance. Each breath had to be purposeful, to help your movements, to guide them. You wish you could be more like him. Every step he took was with ease, so effortless, it was as if nothing ever bothered him. Seeing him dance by your side all those years was inspiring. His body line was always so controlled, and remarkable.
Thinking of him would do you no good, that was the whole reason you’d come out here by yourself. You felt stupid, focusing so much of your time, energy on a heartbreak. It wasn’t anything new. People broke up all the time, people spent years in relationships and then left each other, you had no right to feel this wound up over something that never even was. There were bigger problems than the boy not liking you back, like the fact that you were watching a routine for the fifteenth fucking time and still couldn’t figure out how to get it right.
The lake that you had been drunk at … it was the same one Hyunjin had taken you to after Chan’s party, the date that had been your motivation to finish your work early.
The memory flooded through you, so strong, like it was yesterday.
Hyunjin ran ahead, fingers tightly gripping the chocolate ice cream stick, his laughter rippling through the place, eyes upturned into crescents.
“Give that back!” You had cried, tugging onto his arm and he turned to look at you. He was smiling wide and stupid, lips seconds away from devouring the best part of the ice cream. Your ice cream.
You squeezed his arm, grabbing the absolutely heavenly snack from him before he could bite down.
“What? I can’t even taste it?” He pouted. You had shrugged, patting away the dust from on top of the metal railing before you jumped up onto it, hooking your legs comfortably so that you were now at Hyunjin’s height.
“It’s mine. You said this stuff was a waste of money, so I’m not sharing with you” You smiled, as Hyunjin had stepped between your legs, hands on either side of you, curled around the railing.
“You know you shouldn’t say stuff like that when I can just easily push you into a large body of water” He said, tilting his head at you.
You had raised your eyebrows “You may be a lot of things Hyunjin, but I really hope you’re not a killer”
He had smiled, watching as you finally bit down onto your ice cream, eyes closing as you tasted it, and Hyunjin couldn’t help it. He wanted to know what the big deal was.
He leaned forward, grabbing you by the chin so he could kiss you.
Your eyes widened as Hyunjin slid his tongue into your mouth, deepening the sudden kiss within seconds.
His hand lingered by your jaw, mouth hot and heavy as he made out with you, his tongue exploring your mouth, rendering you breathless.
His other hand was on your waist, holding you tightly in place, because you probably would have slipped from the intensity of his kiss, if not for that.
You were about to grab the lapel of his jacket so you could pull him closer, but before you could act on it, he pulled back just as suddenly.
He was smiling, mouth smeared with chocolate. Half lidded eyes stared at you, the corners of his lips turned up. He licked around his lips, cleaning off the dark chocolate.
“Why did you just do that?” You had asked, out of breath from how strongly he’d kissed you.
“You said it’s yours and I can’t taste it”
“Well…” Hyunjin leaned closer, a smirk playing at his lips “You’re mine so I can still taste you, right?”
Your heart had skipped a beat, no not one, probably ten fucking beats as he said that. You stared at him, blonde strands flowing in the wind as he pushed them out of his face, traces of chocolate still and your gloss on his lips, eyes playful.
“That…that’s not fair” You breathed. Hyunjin leaned close to you again, knowing the effect he had on you.
“Why isn’t it?” He asked.
“You found a loophole”
“Are you complaining that I kissed you?” He pouted.
“No” Your breath had been shaky, still recovering from the way he’d surprised you “I just…”
“It’s okay Y/N” He said, tutting “I was right before, it really is a waste of money”
You rolled your eyes, biting back into the snack that he insisted wasn’t good. Hyunjin watched as you finished it, eyes lingering to the way your lips wrapped around it, the way your tongue licked off the chocolate, how your eyes closed in pleasure. You let out a sound of satisfaction.
“Let’s go home” He blurted.
Hyunjin didn’t answer, leaning in to catch you off guard again. He kissed you, hand sliding into your hair as he slightly tugged at it pulling your head back to give him more easy access. He made you almost stumble from how good it felt, and steadied you at the same time, other hand on your bare thigh.
“So I can taste you for real” He mumbled, against your mouth, sending a spark of arousal straight to your gut.
“Fuck” You muttered, hand abandoning the remaining snack because nothing could ever feel as good as him anyway. You held his face in your hands and kissed him back, tracing his mouth to memory with yours.
Hyunjin groaned, biting your bottom lip “When we get home, I’m going to taste you for hours”
You shifted in his grip, feeling restless by the second. “Stop” You whined.
“I haven’t even started yet” He said, lip curled up in a smirk as his hands ran up your body, pressed up against you, and you could feel him getting hard.
He looked especially gorgeous, golden hair swept back in the wind since he hadn’t bothered to tie it up, and a black blazer over a white T shirt that hugged his body perfectly. Only he could pull off a look like this so well, and drive you crazy with it.
His hand slid up your thigh, fingers dangerously tracing circles, and you pulled back “What are you doing, Hyun?”
His fingers kept hiking up under your dress, inching closer “Making sure you’re ready for me”
“Hyun, we’re in public”
His teeth grazed your ear “Just one finger, please”
Your eyes widened, his words having way too much of an effect on you than you wished, and you shivered from the cold metal of his rings grazing your inner thigh.
“Hyun, stop. You’re making me want it” You said, not enough strength in your voice to actually resist him, but you were in public.
“That’s why I said let’s go home” He mumbled, lips hovering over yours, body pressed between your legs, allowing you to feel how turned on he was.
You looked around, at the few people at the lake, strolling by with their partners, or walking their dogs. Nobody was looking at you, but you still didn’t want to be that couple.
“On one condition” You hummed, leaning in to peck him on the lips.
“Anything you want, baby”
You pulled him closer, titling his face so you could mumble in his ear “I get to taste you first”
Hyunjin let out a loud groan, kissing you again “Fuck…you’re gonna kill me”
Your hand slipped, and your phone fell, tumbling into the layer of snow.
“Fuck” You mumbled.
You’d cut your hand on the edge of the table.
A small trickle of blood dripped down your palm onto the snow and you swallowed.
The memory burned through you.
It didn’t hurt.
You stared at the path of blood, wondering how you let yourself get so easily immersed in a memory.
You were about to bend down, to pick up your phone, but somebody beat you to it. You looked up, pushing your hair back to see Wooyoung stood there, a bag slung across his body, bucket hat pulled down over his head.
Nobody was supposed to come to the campus on a Sunday.
“You dropped this” He smiled.
“Hey Woo” You took the phone from him “What are you doing here?”
“I could ask you the same thing” He said “I came to meet Mrs. Choi, I thought she was gonna be here”
“Oh” You spoke.
“Can I sit here?” He asked, and you nodded. Wooyoung brushed off the snow next to you, and pulled himself up.
“Whoa, hey, what’s wrong?” He asked.
“What?” You looked down at your palm. It wasn’t that bad.
“Why are you crying?”
“I’m not crying”
Wooyoung raised an eyebrow “Do you think I’m an idiot?”
You looked at your reflection in the screen and sure enough dried tears were on your cheeks, your eyes puffy and swollen. You don’t remember crying…
“Is that supposed to be a trick question?” You asked him, smiling.
“What’s wrong?” He shifted closer.
“Would you believe me if I said I don’t know?”
“So you really do think I’m an idiot”
You laughed, a tear unintentionally escaping and you wiped it with your sleeve.
“I’m fine Woo. I just, I cut myself”
“And that’s why you’re crying?”
You nodded, shrugging slightly.
“You are really frustrating, Y/N” He spoke.
“I know” You mumbled. You couldn’t even find it in you to be offended. You fiddled with your hair tie, snapping it across your wrist, focusing your attention on the make of the fabric.
“So then what are you doing here on a Sunday?” He peered at you.
“Learning to dance”
“Don’t be a smartass” Wooyoung rolled his eyes, gloved hand reaching over to pinch your cheek. You laughed at the cute gesture.
“Why aren’t you at home, resting? I heard you had a rough night a couple of days ago”
“Where did you hear that?” You glanced up, dread settling in your stomach.
“Well, word got around that you were in a fight or something”
You groaned, bringing your knees up to your chest “Fuck. Does everybody know?”
“No, not everybody. Don’t worry about that. Want to talk about it?” He said sweetly.
You buried your head in your hands “Do you think I’d be here on a Sunday afternoon if I wanted to talk about it?”
Wooyoung surprisingly did not mind the attitude. You heard him shift closer, prying your hands away from your face.
“What are you really doing here, Y/N?”
You narrowed your eyes at him. You didn’t want to talk about this to anybody, much less him but you nodded, wiping off the blood from your leggings. Maybe it would do you good.
“I just can’t figure out what to do…I feel like whatever routine I pick, I could never do it any justice. I’ve watched it countless times, and it’s too hard. The funny thing is I always feel this way, like I got into this Uni on a fluke because everybody else is so good. I just…I don’t know. You’re probably tired of hearing me complain about this over and over. I just wish I was more confident, like you are”
“That’s the only reason you’re crying?”
You definitely weren’t going to bring up the other reason. It was quite obvious already.
“Can I tell you something, Y/N?”
He brought his legs up on the table, turning to face you “You’re crazy to doubt yourself so much. When I say you’re a good dancer, I don’t just say it so you like me, or because I think you’re pretty”
You raised an eyebrow at the words and he smiled.
“Okay well, the pretty thing and the good dancer thing are exclusive of each other”
“Thank you” You laughed.
“I mean it. I’ve said it before, I’ll say it again. You’re so inspiring. You do know that everybody in class looks up to you, right?”
“I really, really doubt that”
Wooyoung titled his head “The day we find out you were switching partners, half of us wanted to be the one to be paired up with you. It’s more painful to see you thinking that you suck than to see you be possibly narcissistic because you realize how good you are”
You laughed at his words “You…actually make sense I guess”
“I’ve been saying the same thing since day one. It’s really about time you start listening to me”
“It’s easier to say it than to believe it, Wooyoung”
“Well then I hope you have someone who says it to you every day, Y/N”
You stared at him, his words sinking in. Fuck, things would’ve been so much easier if you liked him. Why did it have to be a boy who didn’t care about you?
“What are you thinking?” He asked, resting his head on his elbow and looking up at you.
“About how I hate boys”
He laughed, loudly “Ouch, Y/N. I give you that whole speech and that’s what you have to say in return”
You suddenly felt an onslaught of guilt hit you, for how you’d turned down all his advances, all the times he’d been so sweet with you, offered to take you out, made you feel better. Yet you had rarely returned the love.
Your eyes prickled with tears “I’m sorry, Woo”
“Y/N…what? I was just kidding” He scooted closer, hand coming up to your back.
“No, I just…” You grabbed his hand, so you could express the sincerity of your words “I just really appreciate you saying that to me Woo. You have no reason to be so nice, and I’m sorry that I said no to your date…”
“Y/N…are you seriously apologizing to me?”
You blinked “Yeah…”
He let out a soft laugh “It’s not your fault. So what if I have a tiny crush on you? Those happen all the time, and you really can’t blame me for it. I mean, have you seen yourself? You’re pretty much perfect, so yeah, I asked you out on a date, but…it’s okay. It’s okay if you don’t feel the same”
You stared at him.
“How can you be okay with it?”
He shrugged “Well, I wasn’t initially. But quite a few nights with Seonghwa and Chan will change you”
“We’ve been hanging out quite a bit. That’s not the point. The point is… I’m the one who should be apologizing. I’m sorry if I was pushy…or…jealous. I acted like a kid. I would love to just be able to hang out with you…and not make you uncomfortable because of my feelings”
“Wow” You spoke “I…I wish it was that easy for me too”
Then again, what you felt for Hyunjin wasn’t just a passing crush. It was so much more…but Wooyoung was right. It wasn’t Hyunjin’s fault he didn’t feel the same. That’s just how things were. You couldn’t hold it against him, that would be so wrong.
“Anybody would be crazy not to like you, Y/N”
You let out a laugh “You’re just saying that because I’m heartbroken”
Wooyoung hummed “He is crazy to not care about you”
You wondered when or how Wooyoung knew about your thing with Hyunjin, but you couldn’t find it in yourself to ask.
“I’m sure somebody’s thinking the same about me and you… that I’m crazy to not feel that way for you” You looked up at him.
Wooyoung shook his head “It’s not the same. I’m happy to just know you, even if we’re just friends”
“Wow. You really weren’t kidding about the Chan and Seonghwa thing”
Maybe you should have a talk with them too, aid your aching heart.
Wooyoung had a toothy grin on his face. “Y/N. You know what you need?”
“What?” You asked. So many people had told you what you ‘needed’ in the past few weeks, none of them ever actually coming close, but Wooyoung was smiling wide and you were curious.
“A movie night, with me, and some friends”
You didn’t expect him to say that.
“What movie?” You asked, wrapping your arms around your knees.
“I don’t know yet but my friend’s having this small get together at his place. He’s loaded, so he has this huge projector in the den, I’ve hung out there before”
You thought about it “I don’t know, Woo…”
“He also has a popcorn machine” Wooyoung added.
“Like the ones they have in theaters?”
“The very same” He smiled “And he has an arcade room. God, you’re really gonna enjoy it Y/N. I’ve been there, he does them every month”
“Are there going to be a lot of people?”
“There won’t be anybody that you don’t know, don’t worry”
“And your friend…he’s okay with me coming?”
“Of course, we can all bring a date”
He laughed “Okay, not a date, but a friend”
“A friend” You repeated “That sounds good. I could need a friend right now”
Wooyoung wasn’t lying when he said his friend is rich. You looked up in awe at the apartment building. You already felt like you were trespassing, or intruding somehow, especially since you didn’t even know who all were going to be here.
“And you’re sure he won’t mind me being here?” You bit your lip.
Wooyoung rolled his eyes “I’ll take you home if you ask me that again”
You nodded “Fine”
You hugged the sweater around yourself tighter while waiting for someone to open the door, bouncing on the balls of your feet. You felt giddy, nervous with anticipation. You hadn’t come out in so long, especially to meet other people. And well, the last time you went out, you ended up making a fool of yourself.
The door flew open suddenly, and you stumbled back. Chan stood there, a huge smile on his face. He was in blue pajamas, silver glasses pushed up his nose, and newly bleached blonde hair.
“You made it, Woo” He smiled and then turned to you “I can’t tell you how happy I am to see you here”
You didn’t know Chan was going to be here.
“Wait, whose party is it?” You asked, stepping inside.
“Um, you’ve met him before. At my place, remember? Changbin”
Changbin as in part of Han’s team and one of his best friends? The same Changbin you met at Chan’s party?
“It’s his party? Why isn’t Jisung here then?” You looked around. The thought of Jisung being here, but not wanting to tell you briefly crossed your mind. Did you somehow upset him?
“He hates our movie nights. We always pick horror” Chan shrugged.
“He gets easily scared?” Wooyoung asked.
“No, he gets easily bored”
“Right” Wooyoung laughed. He took off his coat, tossing it on a nearby table. He really was comfortable here.
“Y/N. The place is heated, so you can take that off if you’d like” Chan offered, looking over your thick fluffy sweater.
“Um, that’s okay” Your sweater was your only comfort right now, warm and calming on your body. That, and also the jumpsuit you’d worn underneath was so short, it would barely cover half your ass and you wondered why Yeji had made you wear it.
“Well, well, well. Look who decided to show up” A booming voice interrupted, and you saw Changbin stood at the archway.
“Hey” You spoke in response, but not before he ran to Wooyoung. Woo burst into a squeal as Changbin picked him up with ease.
“You know how late you are!” Changbin spoke, spinning him around as Wooyoung’s squeals filled the hallway.
“Oh wow” You watched at the display of strength, as Wooyoung kept begging to be put down.
“They always get like that” Chan said to you with a dismissal of his hand “Don’t worry about it”
You had no idea Wooyoung and Changbin had got so close, much less that they knew each other. Yeji was right when she said that you’d really kept yourself out of the loop. You hadn’t left your room in weeks, and it seemed strange to see how everybody else’s life had progressed so much, in just those weeks.
“Come on, you wanna see the rest of the place?” Chan asked, snapping you out of your thoughts. Wooyoung and Changbin were still at it, so you nodded “Sure”
Changbin’s place was sweet. If they did movie nights so often, you wonder if Yeji had ever been to one. After all, they were all running in common circles of friends and apparently had gotten close while you’d been moping away in your room. He guided you down the hallway, probably to the den, where the movie would be set up. You trailed alongside, watching the art pass you on the walls. There were so many paintings, but you knew nothing about art, so all you could do was admire their beauty.
“Make yourself comfortable” Chan said, as you both stepped into the den. There was a projector set up, a large white screen against the wall, and seating of all kinds scattered everywhere. Every inch of the floor was covered in blankets and pillows, twinkling lights brightening up the place.
You took in a breath. The smell of caramel popcorn wafted the air.
There were a few people from Chan’s party that you recognized, already sitting, scattered across the room, and unlike what Wooyoung said, you definitely did not know everybody here, but it somehow didn’t make you feel as anxious as you thought it would.
“So, what are we watching?” You asked Chan, clutching onto a pillow he handed you.
Chan smiled “Why? You get scared easy?”
“Not real-” Before you could reply, the wind was knocked out of you as Wooyoung barreled into you. You let out a shriek, pillow flying to the ground as he picked you up, spinning you, clearly having been inspired by Changbin in how to catch people off guard.
“Wooyoung, stop!” You said, fingers digging into his elbow and he immediately did, putting you back down so you could find your footing. He was grinning wide, a gummy worm hanging in his mouth.
“See, you do get scared” He teased.
“You’re already so pumped up” You stated, and he reached into his pocket, extending his hand to offer you a handful of candy. You grabbed a gummy bear, chewing into it as Changbin joined you.
“I’m really glad Wooyoung brought a date other than Park Seonghwa to my parties” Changbin said, and you laughed.
“You’re just jealous, Binnie” Wooyoung sang, biting into another candy worm.
“We’re not here on a date” You added.
“I know that sweetheart. You’d be crazy to date him”
“Hey!” Wooyoung shoved him, and Changbin burst into a fit of laughter.
Chan stood in the middle looking at you, a smile on his face “I told you”
“Well, come on then! Let’s actually start the movie” A girl announced, rushing over to the group. You’d seen her before at a few parties, and you were pretty sure she was also in one of your classes. She looked really cute, dressed down in a floral get up, dark curls pushed back.
It took you a minute to realize she was looking at you “You must be Y/N. I’m Haesul, we haven’t officially met”
“Hi, Haesul” You smiled “How do you know them?”
“Bad luck” Changbin answered for her, and Haesul rolled her eyes.
“He’s exactly right. We just have a common class together, and I was paired up with him. How do you know each other?”
“Well, she’s Jisung’s best friend” Chan replied.
“Ahhh!” Haesul nodded, and you caught her looking you up and down “You did seem so familiar when you walked in, I just couldn’t place it”
“Right” You smiled.
“Come on, get comfortable, we’re not going to stand talking here forever” Chan spoke, his arm wrapped around Haesul now.
“Y/N. Pick your poison” Changbin said, offering you two cups.
“I’ll take the one without alcohol” You peered into them, the color almost the same.
“You’re not drinking?” Wooyoung asked.
“After last time, never again” You mumbled under your breath, as Changbin pushed forward the non-alcoholic punch into your hands.
“Wait!” Haesul yelled, interrupting the group “You’re Hwang Hyunjin’s girl! I heard about you so much”
Your grip on the cup tightened, hearing his name, the liquid spilling out over the edges.
How did everybody know about that? You were so sure you and Hyunjin had been on the down low…back when you were anything.
“No, of course not. They’re not dating” Wooyoung said quickly, wrapping an arm around you. Haesul’s eyebrows raised, as she looked at the gesture.
“Neither are we” Wooyoung added, with a laugh “She’s just here as my friend, she’s spent far too long cooped up in her room because of anatomy”
Haesul smiled “Ah okay, sorry. I don’t know why I thought it was you”
Why was it even you?
Of all people in the world, him choosing you, even if to just fuck, was surprising in the first place, seeing as to how perfect he was and how…you just were.
Wooyoung’s arm around you tightened, squeezing you. He probably saw your face drop, the change in mood and he leaned in “Sorry about that”
After an infuriatingly long debate on which movie to pick, they finally started it. You settled further into your seat, the bowl of buttery popcorn balanced precariously on your knee. Woo was next to you, curled up to the sofa arm, the blanket pulled up to his nose.
“You’re going to watch the entire movie like that?” Changbin teased him.
“I hate jump scares”
“It’s been five minutes into the movie, you baby”
You laughed, and Wooyoung narrowed his eyes at you “Don’t come crying to me when you also get scared out of your wits”
“I think I’ll be fine, Woo” You smiled, digging into the popcorn. Chan was sitting a few feet away from you, his arm wrapped around a blonde girl, and you didn’t know anything about them but it seemed platonic. They looked so comfortable around each other.
The floor seating was almost fully occupied, everybody sitting shoulder to shoulder, a mess of pillows and blanket warmers everywhere.
Your eyes fell on the couple next to Changbin, at the far end of the L-shaped couch. A girl was sitting in a boy’s lap. You think his name was Yeonjun. He had her arms wrapped around her midriff, face buried in her hair and you would have called them out on their public display of affection if it wasn’t for the fact that you had never talked to them before, and the fact that a large part of you wished you were in that place.
They looked so in love. Anybody could see that.
Haesul’s words rang through you.
I don’t know why I thought it was you.
How could you have ever thought that either? She was so right. It was kind of funny now to think that you ever expected Hyunjin would be interested in you. You really were stupid.
What had you even been hoping for? That you guys would sleep together a few times, and he would suddenly fall in love with you?
What was even there to fall in love with?
You hadn’t been his best kiss in high school, you probably were far from being his best fuck too.
Reality was harsh.
Well now you knew what not to expect in the future. False hopes were dumb enough as is, more so when he had given no indication of such romantic interest in you.
Despite that realization, you felt slightly better now. Knowing that you had just probably misread or overinterpreted every signal or sign from him because you were too blinded by the possibility of it meaning that he wants you. Now you clearly would know not to do that, in your future relationships, if you ever had any.
It had been such a teenage-you thing to do.
It’s exactly what you had done in high school, convinced yourself he liked you, just because he was nice to you a few times. Reading into every single gesture from your crush, every hand hold, every gaze, every polite sentence.
To the day, all you could think of was what you had done wrong to have pushed him away, what you’d said, but that was not the case.
You hadn’t ever lost Hyunjin, you just never had him in the first place.
Maybe that was a better fate.
A woman in the movie screamed and Wooyoung jumped, gripping your arm tightly, fingernails digging into your skin.
“Ouch” You shifted.
“Sorry” Woo apologized. Despite that, he would cut off the circulation of your arm at every jump scare in the movie. You almost regretted sitting next to him, until you realized he was nice enough to bring you here in the first place.
The movie wasn’t half bad, and you found yourself laughing at parts you didn’t expect, and Wooyoung would look over at you every time you did, a soft smile on his face. The knot of constant anxiety in your stomach was dissipating by every passing second, and by every bite of popcorn.
You pulled your legs up, pulling some of the blanket from Wooyoung onto you, the tightness in your chest almost gone, until you heard a whine.
The girl had her eyes closed, and she wasn’t even watching the movie anymore. Yeonjun peppered little kisses up her neck.
Maybe you should look away, but you couldn’t.
He hugged her tighter, and she whined again, turning to narrow her eyes at him.
It was all so familiar.
“Y/N?” Wooyoung called.
“Yeah?” You immediately turned to him.
“Yeah” You nodded. His eyes trailed over to where yours were and he leaned in “If you wanted to watch a romance, you could have just said so”
You flushed, embarrassed at being caught, shoving him by the shoulder “I was looking somewhere else…”
Wooyoung laughed “No, I’m serious. A romance would be so much better than this scary ass shit”
“Woo, if you’re gonna keep talking and not watch the movie, do you wanna go get me a soda?” Chan asked.
“I didn’t say anything!” Wooyoung replied, his voice high pitched and a pout on his face.
“I’ll go get it, Chan” You spoke, hauling yourself off the couch. You needed to stretch your legs anyway, and also be far away from the couple in love, who were also looking at you now.
“If it’s not a problem, can you get us a soda too?” Yeonjun asked, his voice sincere.
“She’s going to be begging me to get it otherwise” He smiled, his grip on her still tight. She gasped, bumping him on the nose.
You smiled “Yeah, it’s no problem”
“Did I ever tell you that you’re an angel?” Chan tilted his head at you, and you rolled your eyes.
“If you’re all going to have a fucking conversation, at least pause the movie!” Changbin sighed.
“Sorry, Bin!” Everybody said at the same time, and you laughed. This must happen often.
You walked out of the den. People were still filtering in, and it seemed more like a party now than Wooyoung had made it out to be. It was funny how half of them weren’t even here for the movie, but just hanging around the hallway, or the living room.
The kitchen was huge, a marble island spanning half the length of it, stacked with drinks of every kind. Bowls of candy and mini hot dogs were in the middle, and you grabbed a handful of gummy bears for you and Wooyoung later, sticking it into your pocket.
You pulled down your sweater again, it had ridden up so much.
A girl with her back to you poured cranberry soda into two red cups.
You hopped over to her “Is that the spiked one or the normal?”
She laughed, taking a big gulp “Ask me that again in an hour”
You laughed, as she handed you the bottle. You grabbed two cups out of a plastic wrapper, placing them on the counter as you carefully poured the soda. You did not want to stain Changbin’s kitchen.
She looked at you, extending her hand “For my sake I hope they aren’t – Y/N?”
“Yeah?” You turned to her.
It was her, Hyunjin’s friend.
Her eyes widened as she realized who you were, and then she immediately shook away the surprise, going back to a straight face.
“Um…you’re Y/N, right?” She asked, her words deliberate.
“I’m Nayeon. I’ve heard a lot about you”
“Right. Me too”
You nodded. If she was here, that meant…
She shook her head again, before bursting into a huge grin “Sorry. Look at me being all embarrassing”
“That’s okay” You said, although your heart was racing a mile a minute. She wouldn’t have come here alone, right? That would be wishful thinking.
“I’m Nayeon” She repeated, her smile so bright that it felt like you should be just as happy to see her as she was to see you “Please don’t feel awkward”
“I’m fine” You forced a smile before turning back to the soda. You stared at the way it dripped down into your cup, trying not to freak out.
“I love what you’re wearing Y/N”
Well now you knew she wasn’t being honest. You hardly wore anything special.
“Thank you” You glanced over at her, wanting to return the compliment.
Wow. She was really pretty, up close. Straight out of a Disney movie. She was smiling, and you wonder if she was faking it. Why would she like you when her best friend hated you?
“So…who’s your date tonight?” She asked.
“Um…I came here with my friend” You replied, lips pressed tightly together.
The silence in the kitchen was deafeningly awkward. Had soda ever been so slow at coming out of a bottle?
“You?” You asked, turning to her already knowing you did not want to hear the answer.
She smiled politely at you “Um…”
Before she could answer, a painful voice interrupted the both of you.
“Nayeonnn. What’s taking you so long?” He whined.
You both turned at the sound, and your heart stilled.
Hyunjin stood at the kitchen doorway.
His eyes fell on yours immediately, widening slightly.
The tightness in your chest was back, heart pounding at the speed of light.
His blonde hair was slicked to the side, showing off his forehead.
He was in loose grey sweatpants, and a sweatshirt which stretched over his torso - hugging his body perfectly, it was like you could see every muscle underneath.
Hyunjin stared at you, not bothering to hide the surprise on his face, especially to have seen you with Nayeon. Fuck, he hoped she didn’t say anything to you.
“Um…I was just getting a soda. Want one?” Nayeon asked, her bright voice not suiting the tense atmosphere.
He blinked, clearing his throat and moving his gaze away from you “Yeah. Sure”
You stood still, your gaze falling to the floor as Nayeon poured another glass for him, and he stood in absolute silence at the doorway.
You should have known he would be here. He was Changbin’s friend, wasn’t he? You had no idea, it was like you knew nothing about him. Last time he’d seen you, you’d been pissed drunk thinking he’s your boyfriend. The memory made you want to throw up, change your name, move countries.
You wish Nayeon couldn’t hear your pulse pounding, or your hands shaking because you didn’t need to embarrass yourself even further.
You felt lightheaded. You hadn’t even drunk anything, and you felt like sitting down, to calm your frantic heart.
He had such an effect on you still, and you hated it.
“Do you want candy, Jinnie?” She asked him, the strings in your heart pulling.
Even if they were just best friends…you hated the fact that you had lost that closeness with him, that you couldn’t refer to him by nicknames, or even just have a normal conversation. You finished pouring the drink, screwing the bottle cap shut, trying not to think about who was behind you.
You could feel his eyes on yours, and you wish you’d dressed up cuter. Not that it mattered. He wasn’t interested. Keep reminding yourself that.
You were supposed to be moving on… yet everything in the room stood taut still.
You had to get back to the boys, instead of lingering here like you had nothing better to do. So, you took in a breath, fingers clutching the soda cups, the perspiration sticking to your hand, as you picked them up. Hyunjin was still blocking the doorway and you kept your eyes on your cup. You couldn’t look at him, not when he was so close like this. You didn’t want to see the same look he gave you a few nights ago.
As if you bothered him by just being near him.
“Excuse me” You mumbled, and he moved to the side, shuffling over to the edge, his eyes on you.
You walked out, trying to ignore the way his scent clouded all your senses, and how much you still absolutely cherished it.
“Is the movie really that bad?” Wooyoung whispered.
“You seem to hate it” He spoke.
“No, it’s fine” You popped another kernel in your mouth, chewing down. Yeonjun and his girlfriend were kissing now, the soda cup you got them long forgotten on the floor next to them.
He was here at the party, but he wasn’t here watching the movie. Why? What was so interesting outside, that he didn’t feel the need to come into the den with the rest of you?
Wooyoung elbowed you again “Y/N…what’s wrong?”
You looked at him, offering a smile “Nothing, Woo. I’m just a bit tired”
“All of a sudden? I know Changbin’s house is big, but the kitchen isn’t that far”
You laughed at his words “I’m just tired in general”
“Hmm” He huffed, reaching into your pocket to grab some candy “You’re such a bad liar”
“Watch the movie, smartass” You replied, nudging him so he would stop asking you so many questions. The movie was halfway over, and you hadn’t really paid attention ever since you’d gotten back. Not for a lack of trying, the plot was actually interesting.
Wooyoung suddenly jumped, a small shriek escaping him, scaring you.
“What?” You looked at him.
He lifted the blanket over his eyes “Why the hell did the woman go down in the basement?”
“I don’t know” You replied, your eyes flickering across the room. Everybody was so invested in the movie. Even Yeonjun and the girl, who weren’t making out anymore, but watching wide eyed. She was curled up on him, a blanket over the two of them.
“Okay, do you like him or something?” Wooyoung asked.
Wooyoung gestured towards the couple, mouthing “Yeonjun”
“No! Of course not”
“Then why do you keep looking at them?”
You shrugged “I don’t know…it just, it must be nice”
Wooyoung sighed, the attitude in his tone dropping “Y/N…you’re not supposed to be thinking about him”
“I know. It’s just hard not to”
“Why is it so hard?”
“Hwang Hyunjin!” Changbin suddenly yelled, and Wooyoung flipped around to see Hyunjin enter the room.
You sunk deeper into the couch, mumbling “That’s why”
Wooyoung’s eyes were wide, and you immediately busied yourself with your phone. Hyunjin stepped over to the couch, crouching in front of Chan. You were going to text Yeji as a distraction, but you couldn’t help but overhear them.
“Hey, Chan. Sorry I’m late” His voice was soft, apologetic.
“No worries, Jinnie. I know how busy you’ve been lately”
“And sorry, I missed most of the movie. You know I don’t like this stuff”
“Stop apologizing. I’m just glad you made it. Is Nayeon out?”
“Yeah, she’s on call with Yongbok trying to convince him to come”
“Nayeon and Yongbok together. They’re gonna wreck havoc” Chan mumbled.
Hyunjin laughed softly, the pure sound making you look up. His eyes were crinkled, glimmering in adoration as he looked up at Chan.
It wasn’t fair.
It wasn’t fair that it wasn’t you who made you laugh like that, or that his smile would never be just for you.
“Y/N” Chan suddenly said, and you snapped your head to his. You couldn’t be caught dead staring at Hyunjin.
“Hmm?” You asked, and this was what torture was probably like, because Chan was so close to you, and Hyunjin was right there, his eyes on you. You felt conscious, and like you wanted to crawl into a hole because even though your eyes were laser focused on Chan, Hyunjin was in your periphery.
“Isn’t Jisung coming?” Chan asked.
“Um, I don’t know”
Fuck, that was such a stupid reply. You were so fucking stupid. You might as well have not said anything rather than contribute absolutely nothing to the conversation.
“Well, you two are attached to the hip all the time. Can you make him come?” Chan asked. Hyunjin’s eyes wandered over to Wooyoung, who was right next to you, and then back to you.
“Sure. I’ll text him” You said, looking down at your phone to do so.
“Thank you, sweetheart” Chan said, and your eyes flicked up in surprise at the endearing term. Except you found yourself looking at Hyunjin, and he was looking at you too.
Why was he here again?
You were seeing him after so long, it was like you were seeing him for the first time.
He was so close to you. The blue and purple light from the projector flashing over his face periodically, and his brows were raised softly. His mouth was pursed, gloss on his lips making him look like a doll.
The faint mole under his eye was clear as day today, and his lids were swept with a light color, making his eyes stand out even more, which were fixed on yours still, a wordless emotion in them. His hair pushed to the side, so you could see the darker undercut, making him look so undeniably attractive.
It was unfair.
It was unfair how much you felt for him, and how untouchable he was now.
You thought back to what Wooyoung had said. About how he was happy just being friends with you, and you couldn’t imagine yourself feeling the same way for Hyunjin anytime soon. You don’t think you could ever go back to a time when you didn’t love him, when every little thing he did wasn’t so endearing to you, when his existence wasn’t so beautiful and valuable to you every second.
He would always have your heart.
Your phone buzzed loudly, making you jump, your attention finally away from him and you looked down at your lap.
11:28 PM “I’m not sure, I’ll try”
“He said he’ll try” You spoke and Chan nodded. If he noticed the way you and Hyunjin were looking at each other, he didn’t comment on it.
He just smiled, ruffling Hyunjin’s hair “Perfect, now get a seat and get comfortable”
“Channie hyung, I’m not watching this movie” Hyunjin said softly.
“Well, it’s almost over, and the next one is a romance, so call Nayeon back here and get on the couch”
“Midnight in Paris?” Hyunjin asked, a hopeful tone.
“I know it’s your favorite, Jinnie” Chan said.
Hyunjin nodded, the corners of his lips turning up into a smile, melting you from the inside.
You couldn’t stay here.
You poured another cup of soda.
“So, what, you’re just going to stay in the kitchen while the movie ends?” Wooyoung asked.
“No, I’m just getting a refill”
“You’ve been in here for ten minutes, Y/N” He stated, as he stuffed a mini hot dog in his mouth. You watched the sauce drip from his mouth, and you sighed.
“I feel awkward being in there” You admitted, crossing your arms.
“Wooyoung and Y/N, if you’re going to make out, I suggest you don’t do it in my kitchen”
Changbin entered, a stupid smile on his face. Wooyoung flushed, his eyes darting to yours and then back to him “We are literally five feet away Bin. Not everyone is as horny as you”
Changbin rolled his eyes “Well, anyway. Have you guys seen Haseul?”
You shook your head, but you doubt he was asking you in the first place. You grabbed another candy worm, chewing down on it as you listened to them talk.
Wooyoung shrugged “She might be out in the living room. Why? You looking to hook up or something?”
Changbin laughed “Of course not”
“Then?” Wooyoung asked, making way for Changbin to grab another drink.
“I’m not asking for myself. She wanted to meet Hyunjin, I think they’ll get along pretty well”
Wooyoung’s eyes flicked to yours, as if he wanted to catch your reaction, a hint of pity in them, and that upset you too. It was like he expected you to cry. You felt fragile.
“Since when do you set people up?” Wooyoung asked.
Changbin rolled his eyes “She’s exactly his type. An artist, she sings too, and just as dramatic as that boy”
“Right, Why don’t you just date her then?” Wooyoung joked, as Changbin slung an arm around him.
Changbin narrowed his eyes at him “You’re funny”
“And you’re stupid. Maybe you should stop playing matchmaker and start choosing better movies for your parties”
You stood there awkwardly, watching the exchange take place.
Changbin playfully punched him at that. “Shut up. Hyunjin is the only one who doesn’t like the movie. Anyway, if you guys see the cute girl, send her my way. Least I can do is get Jinnie some action tonight”
“Dude” Wooyoung said, eyes flicking over to you.
Changbin looked to you “Oh, fuck, sorry Y/N. I forgot you guys had a small thing”
You sipped on your soda cup, chewing on the edge “It’s cool, Changbin”
He grinned immediately, not second guessing the lie. After all, he didn’t know you, he had no reason to “No hard feelings, then?”
You shot him a smile “No hard feelings”
“Y/N, Come on” Wooyoung said, following you out into the hallway.
“What?” You asked.
“Don’t go home, please” He spoke, grabbing your hand.
“I’m sorry. I just…I told you I’m tired”
“Why are you letting him ruin your night?” He pulled at your arm.
“He’s not ruining anything, Woo. I’m the one who’ll be ruining it for him. Everybody in there is his friend, I shouldn’t be here. He was so uncomfortable. If I go back in there, I’ll have to sit on the couch next to him while watching Midnight in fucking Paris as his friends hook up with some cute girl who is exactly his type apparently. I can’t do that”
“It’s a good movie”
You sighed “Woo… it’s just better if I go home”
“Because I was feeling okay, I was actually feeling good, but then he showed up and it all went away. You’re the one who said I should move on from him, right? I can’t do that in the same room as him. Plus he absolutely hates me, and he loves that movie. If I stay, I’ll just ruin it for him.”
Yeonjun and the girl making out in front of you was one thing. You didn’t even know them. You think you’d die if you saw Hyunjin kissing some other girl. Not again.
The memory of him kissing Seojun was so fresh in your mind, as was the teenage heartbreak you had felt in that moment.
Just the thought made your stomach turn and you walked to the door, slipping on your gloves.
Wooyoung grabbed your wrist, stopping you again “I don’t think you should leave”
“Why should I not?”
He let out a groan, rubbing his hands over his face as if it pained him to say this. He had his hands on his hips, looking down at the floor.
“Wooyoung?” You asked “Why should I not leave?”
He sighed “Y/N... Hyunjin doesn’t hate you”
“I can’t believe I’m saying this” He mumbled “But I really don’t think he does”
“You don’t think that? Well, I didn’t think that too, but that’s what he told me”
“He told you he hates you?”
“No, he told me that we should stop fucking because that was a big mistake and that all we ever did was fuck. Kind of the same thing”
Wooyoung’s eyes widened at your unfiltered words.
“No…it’s not the same thing Y/N”
“What?” You raised your brows “Are you…defending Hyunjin now?”
Didn’t Wooyoung hate Hyunjin more than anything?
“Look. I don’t know the whole story, Y/N, but I don’t think he hates you. You should talk to him”
You laughed “Are you serious? I can’t talk to him, not after it completely mortified me the last two times we did!”
“So what? You want him to talk to you?”
“He had plenty of chances and he didn’t. Look, I appreciate you wanting to comfort me, but you…you can’t just say stuff you don’t know. Don’t get my hopes up like that”
Wooyoung nodded, seeing the look on your face and he stepped back “Okay. I’m sorry. You’re right. I’m not sure. But are you?”
“Am I what?”
“Are you sure that he doesn’t like you?”
“Did he send you here or something? Why are you being like this?”
“Because I don’t believe anybody could not like you, Y/N. Especially him”
His words softened your sour mood “That’s sweet Woo, but you and him are different people”
“I just…I just want the best for you, Y/N”
You sighed, stepping close to him “I know, and I thank you for that. I just think that if Hyunjin cared about me in that way… I would know. I think it’s best for everybody if I leave now”
“So what, you need like a sign from the universe?”
You smiled at his efforts to comfort you “The universe couldn’t care less, but yeah maybe. Even if he doesn’t have feelings for me…knowing that he ever cared for me… would be enough”
“Well, Y/N. Then I hope the Universe decides to give you a break, because you deserve to be cared about”
“Hmm, Seonghwa and Chan really did influence you a lot”
Hyunjin stared at the doorway of the den. It had been more than sixteen minutes. He’d counted. You had left, with Wooyoung, and hadn’t come back. The worst kept crossing his mind, thinking about you and Woo together, but he tried to focus on the movie.
It was his favorite one after all.
Changbin on his side nudged him “Are you gonna go talk to her?”
“What?” Hyunjin asked, turning red. How did Changbin know that he was thinking about you? He shrugged, lifting his cup to his lips “I can’t. I don’t know what to say”
“Just tell her you’re into her”
Hyunjin chuckled at the simplicity, but Seo Changbin was a simple man “In those words?”
“How does it matter? As long as the night ends with you two in the same bed, right?”
Hyunjin raised his brows, eyes still fixed on the movie “I think it’s a little more than that, Bin”
“Come on Jinnie. Stop being so hard to get. She’s been waiting to meet you”
Hyunjin turned to him, his heart skipping “She has? She- she said that to you?”
Changbin smiled “Of course. She’s told me a million times how gorgeous you are”
“Stop being so modest” Changbin shoved him “You already know that”
“No, I just…” Hyunjin trailed off, staring at the floor. But why would Y/N confide to Changbin? She didn’t even know him. But then again, she was at his house for a party. Maybe a lot had happened in her life since things between them ended.
“You just what? It’s not that hard, Jinnie. Nobody can say no to you”
“Not that hard?” Hyunjin raised his eyebrows “You’ve never been in love before clearly”
Changbin sputtered his beer out, drawing attention from the people around him.
“In love?” Changbin repeated.
Hyunjin shushed him “Lower your voice”
“When have you even met her to be in love with her?” Changbin asked.
Hyunjin raised his brows “Who are you talking about, Binnie?”
“We are talking about Haesul…”
“Who is Haesul?”
“The girl that thinks you’re gorgeous….”
“Who the hell are you talking about?”
“What? You’re…in love with her?”
“No…” Hyunjin felt embarrassed. Was he so lovesick to not realize the conversation was about a completely different person?
“Well… Y/N just left with Wooyoung, if you were wondering” Changbin said.
Hyunjin nodded “Right”
“You’re in love with her?”
Hyunjin stood up “Um, I’ll be back…”
He couldn’t focus on the movie. He needed to clear his head.
Chan looked up questioningly “You okay?”
“Yup, just getting some fresh air” He replied, clutching the cup in his hands as he left. He’d completely embarrassed himself just now, and he hoped nobody else heard him. Unrequited love was painful enough as is, he didn’t want to be a joke too.
He stared at the art on the walls, calming himself.
He’d been to Changbin’s place a few times before, courtesy to his friends who always forced him. In a way, he was very thankful to them. The fact that he had friends, people who cared about him, despite all the shit he gave them. It was hard, to find that kind of unconditional love anywhere, and Hyunjin would always be grateful for it.
He wish he knew you were coming here. He would have skipped tonight. Seeing the look on your face, one of absolute annoyance and anger, upset him. It frustrated him how things didn’t change. How he could want something so much, and it would still be out of his reach.
Now you’d left with someone who wasn’t him.
Maybe it was karma, payback for all the mean things he’d said to you growing up. After all, how was he supposed to know he would end up falling in love with you? What a cruel joke the universe played on him.
He wondered if you ever felt anything for him, other than hatred and lust. He was so sure you felt something, the night he was out on the Balcony with you, looking up at him like he was your whole world. Or maybe, he was projecting everything, because that’s what he felt about you.
All the conversations from the past months flashed before him, everything your friends had said, how much he’d hurt you, it had all built up so much, that he couldn’t believe you hadn’t punched him yet with the amount of animosity you must hold in your body for him.
He deserved a punch. At least that would be better than you ignoring him, than you walking past him without a word like you weren’t waking up in each other’s arms a month ago.
He couldn’t get Minho’s words out of his head.
‘Years of that just don’t go away. Things don’t change so easily. People don’t fall in love like that, especially not with the person they hated their whole lives. You can’t be so naïve’
What Wooyoung had said.
‘You’re clearly hurting her more than making her happy. You don’t deserve to kiss her. I can’t imagine her liking any bit of who you are as a person’
And what you said, the night at the lake. He still couldn’t understand why you’d called him there, just to rub it in his face that you were moving on? Especially with a random drunk guy. He squeezed his cup, trying to not think of the way you would have kissed that man, just like you used to kiss Hyunjin.
He tried to not think of the way you’d been so wasted, that you’d forgotten you guys weren’t a thing anymore, and had kissed him in front of the pink neon lights.
‘Don’t forget to say I love you’ The sign had read.
Maybe Hyunjin had indeed fooled himself into thinking he’s in love with you. How could everything have turned around so drastically?
He thought of the way you looked tonight, your sweater drowning you, and all he could think of was how warm you would feel in his arms, how he wondered why you were wearing that in the heated apartment. He could see Yeji’s cute jumpsuit underneath that. Did you not feel confident enough to wear just that? If he had the chance, he would have told you how amazing you looked. He would tell you every single day without fail, just so you would know.
Hyunjin wished he had said something more, when he saw you in the kitchen. More than just a stupid reaction of shock that he probably had. How was he supposed to know you’d be here, talking to Nayeon of all people? Were you two just supposed to ignore each other now, every time you met?
He had watched the way Wooyoung was by your side, and never left it. Did he bring you as his date? He couldn’t even feel mad at that. Woo clearly made you happy, more than he himself could.
You looked so good tonight, tired, but good. He hoped you weren’t stressing about the midterms, but knowing you, of course you were.
He wished he could turn back time.
Back to all those years ago when he first met you, then he would undo the damage and hurt he’d caused you. He would have asked you out the day he met you, in school, as little kids. He would have been your first kiss, your first everything, and he would have made sure you never needed anybody except him.
He would have taken you to prom, helped you with every dance recital and school test, he would have made sure no boy ever came close to you, because you would be his. He would have been the only one to touch you, explore you, and you would be his.
He wished he could go back.
He would spoil you so much, that all you would know in life was love.
“Is the painting really that deep, or am I just really that dumb?”
Hyunjin snapped out of his thoughts, turning to see Han Jisung stood next to him. Another bitter reminder of what could have been, and what he could have had.
“Um, what?” He asked.
Han smiled, pointing his cup at the artwork “You’ve been staring at it for like ten minutes”
“Uh…I was just thinking” He bit his lip. Why was Han talking to him?
“Thinking about how much you miss your girlfriend?”
Hyunjin’s head turned to his, his eyes wide “What girlfriend?”
Han raised an eyebrow then burst into laughter “You’re funny”
After seeing the look of confusion on Hyunjin’s face, Han’s eyes narrowed “Your girlfriend…I was just making a joke. I know you’re both scared to commit, I didn’t know you’d be that scared”
“Are you talking about Y/N?” Hyunjin asked, the name bittersweet on his lips.
Han laughed “Who else would I be talking about?”
“She’s not…my girlfriend”
Han smiled “I know…I was making a joke. Maybe one day”
Hyunjin didn’t understand his sense of humor.
“So, where is she?” Han asked “She texted me to come here, but I haven’t seen her around”
“Why would I know where she is?” Hyunjin replied, irritation flooding through him. He didn’t want to have this conversation about you.
Han turned to face him fully “Dude, how drunk are you?”
“How drunk are you?” Hyunjin repeated “I don’t know where Y/N is, I haven’t talked to her in weeks. Your sense of humor is strange, Jisung”
“You haven’t what?”
Hyunjin raised his eyebrows “Do you not know? We ended things. I’m not seeing her anymore”
The look on Han’s face was as if Hyunjin was breaking up with him. He went through a range of emotions before finally sputtering “What?”
“Did she not tell you?”
“No…she told me things are great between you…” Han trailed off.
“Well…they must be great for her, she finally got rid of me”
“Why did you end things?” Han asked, skipping over Hyunjin’s bitter statement.
Hyunjin let out a laugh “She hates me. You can only be around someone who hates you for so long”
“Y/N ended things?” Han asked.
“No” Hyunjin lifted his cup to his mouth, chewing on the rim.
“You broke up with her?”
“We weren’t ever dating in the first place” Hyunjin replied, trying to not get emotional at just the reminder of their conversation.
“Hyunjin just answer me…you broke up with Y/N?”
Hyunjin nodded, shrugging his shoulders “I mean, one of us had to”
“Are you fucking serious?”
“What?” Hyunjin turned to him. Why was Han so mad? Shouldn’t he be happy that he left Y/N alone?
“I can’t believe this. First she doesn’t tell me this happened…I thought she’s been so stressed because of midterms, but clearly nobody cries because of that shit. I should have known” Han muttered.
“Well, that’s between you and her to sort out” Hyunjin replied. Why were they still talking about Y/N?
Han let out an exasperated sigh, running a hand over his face “I just…I can’t believe you”
“Well, if you don’t believe me, just ask her. She’ll be happy to tell you things are over”
“No, I just can’t believe you fucking broke her heart again”
“Well, I’m sorry Han to disappoint you but I -” Hyunjin felt his heart drop as Han’s words hit him “Wait. What do you mean again?”
Jisung stared at him, before letting out a tired laugh “You’re fucking with me, right? She told me this would happen, and I can’t believe I encouraged her to be with you. She said it would happen again”
Hyunjin grabbed onto Jisung’s arms, turning him to face him.
“What do you mean?” He repeated, the edge in his voice slipping through.
“I mean that you are a fucking asshole, dude. I can’t believe I ever took your side. She doesn’t deserve all this shit”
Hyunjin blinked “Jisung. What do you mean, ‘again’?”
Han stared at him blankly, anger falling for a second “You do know that Y/N has been in love with you since high school. Right?”
Hyunjin was only right about one thing.
Everything was ironic.
It felt like his entire world shifted as he processed the words Jisung had just spoken.
He stepped back, stumbling over his step “W-What?”
“Yeah…but you already knew that?”
“Jisung, if this is one of your jokes, I swear I will hit you”
“No, it’s not a joke! Why the hell would I joke about my best friend’s feelings? Y/N liked you in high school, a crazy fucking amount, but you didn’t give a shit about her”
Hyunjin felt his heart drop to his stomach, like all the candy and all the soda he drank was going to come up, and he wanted to throw up.
“And then now, all over again. She told me she was afraid of you hurting her. She told me how scared she was for developing feelings for you, and I…I can’t believe it. She was right to be scared. Do you have any idea how long it took for her to move on from you back then? She was crying for weeks. You fucking broke her heart again, Hyunjin”
“Jisung, I didn’t know. I…I’m sorry” His eyes welled up with tears.
Han’s eyes widened at seeing Hyunjin cry.
“I didn’t know…” Hyunjin repeated, his voice breaking. He hurt her.
He hurt her so much. She would never forgive him.
“Whoa…why are you…why are you upset?” Han asked, stepping closer “Did you drink a lot?”
“No, I…” Hyunjin broke the gaze, looking down at the floor. He was not going to cry in front of Han Jisung at Changbin’s party. He couldn’t. Maybe he had drunk too much, or maybe he loved you far too much for this to be okay. He’d fucked up. He’d fucked up so badly. The thought of having been the one to make you feel like that, killed him, his insides twisting.
“Hyunjin, what…?” Han trailed off, puzzled at the sight.
“I love her so much” Hyunjin finally spoke, through a sob. He hurt the one person he never wanted to.
“I…I didn’t know. I swear I didn’t. I thought she hated me and…” His voice trailed off, before another sob wracked through him and he buried his face in his hands “Now she really will”
“You need to get your shit together, Hyunjin. There’s only so many times you can hurt her. If you actually love her, like you say you do, you should start acting like it. She doesn’t need this shit”
“Jisung. I’m sorry” Hyunjin mumbled, holding back, sniffling. He never meant to.
“I’m not the one you should be saying sorry to”
Hyunjin nodded, breathing into his hands, fresh tears forming in his eyes.
It was karma. The thing he wanted most in the world had happened, Y/N felt the same for him…but now because of him and his stupidity, she would never trust him again.
Everybody was right in the end.
He didn’t deserve her at all.
You stared at the back of the cookie box, trying to figure out the ingredients. Yeji had sent you out on her usual grocery run, she was helping Minho with a project tonight.
It had been more than a week since Changbin’s party, and ever since then…you’d made up your mind. You were going to move past this. Even if it hurt like hell, you couldn’t spend all your days crying about the same boy. 14 year old you would have been so disappointed.
You’d been spending more of your time focusing on the midterms. There were only a few left, and you could get through them.
You placed the box of cookies in the cart, if they weren’t to Yeji’s liking, you could just have them yourself. Being in a grocery store was actually kind of calming, healing. It was the only place on campus you weren’t surrounded by just college kids. It was adults, families, older people, children, which made you feel better about yourself.
College problems were just that…there was so much more to life.
You turned an aisle, leaning on your cart as it rolled across, now in the savory section. There was a couple, younger than you, still in their uniforms from school and they were kissing at the end of the aisle. It made your heart flutter. It was so pure. She was on her toes, leaning up to kiss him and she ran a hand through his hair.
How nice it must be to love somebody that young, and to have them love you back. High school sweethearts.
You shook your head, reaching to pick up some ready to go ramen. The store lights flickered. It was almost closing time, and then you would be the last ones in the store. It made you feel special, somehow.
Since you were the only people there, you could hear everything they were saying, despite how much you tried to tune yourself out.
“You should cut your hair. It’s terrible” She mumbled, against his lips and he laughed.
“No, I should grow it out” He replied.
“You’re so annoying” The girl mumbled.
You reached up to grab the pack of ramen, your hand brushing slightly against a stranger, and you jumped back. You glanced over at them apologetically. You’d been too distracted these days.
“I’m sorry” You muttered quietly, turning to walk back. You could just get some ramen later. Rather that than a confrontation with anybody.
Just as you turned around, they tapped on your shoulder.
“Oh, is that you, Y/N?”
You spun around at the familiar voice, raising your eyebrows at the stranger. She slid down her mask from her face and your eyes widened.
“Hi, sweetie” She smiled, a huge grin on her face.
You immediately stepped forward to hug her, your arm wrapping around her awkwardly, but she pulled you in. You hadn’t met her in what felt like ages, the last time being your high school graduation. She still looked exactly the same, and her warmth spread through you.
“It’s been so long” You told her. You’d been meaning to meet up with her. She was like family to you. Being close to her reminded you of all the years you’d spent by her side, all the hours in the high school practice room, backstage pep talks, dress rehearsals.
“Whoa, let me get a good look at you” She spoke, stepping back. You flushed as she looked you up and down.
“It has been almost a year since you graduated and you already look so much older” She sighed “You kids grow so fast”
You pushed your hands in your pocket “I’m not a kid anymore, Mrs. Park”
“I know, I know. But to me, you’ll always be the little girl who asked me to help her with dance because she was so scared”
Maybe you hadn’t grown after all.
You turned red, glancing down at your feet “Stop…”
“How have you been, love?” She asked, titling her head at you.
“I’m good” You smiled “University has been really stressful, but I love it so much”
“Gosh, you’ll make me cry. Look at you now. You look so good, and you’re in one of the most prestigious universities for dance. I couldn’t be prouder of you. I tell everyone about you at school, you know”
You laughed. She was so dramatic. “Thank you but it’s literally only because of you”
“No sweetie, it’s cause of you alone and all the effort you put into this. You know you’re one of the only few students from school who got into their top choice of college?”
“Really? I haven’t really kept in touch with many people from school” You admitted.
“You must have made some friends in college?”
“Yeah” You laughed “I have met some amazing people, although I am guilty of cancelling far too many plans recently. Midterms and all”
“Well, midterms come and go. Those friends are going to last you forever”
You rolled your eyes “That’s so cheesy, Mrs. Park, even for you”
She laughed “Look at you rolling your eyes at me”
“I’m sorry” You apologized.
Mrs. Park’s eyes flickered down and she said “No, but you really look great, Y/N. I’m so happy to see you here”
“Me too. I haven’t seen you here before”
“I usually go to the one near our place, but they’re all out of the ramen, and you know how kids are” She shrugged.
“Ahh” You smiled and then looked towards the packs “You’re getting that?”
She nodded and you reached up on your toes. You weren’t that tall, and your fingers barely skimmed the edge of the shelf. You hopped up to grab the two closest to the edge, and two more knocked over to the floor.
“Ah, fuck” You mumbled and looked up at her in surprise, covering your mouth “I- sorry, I didn’t mean to say that”
Mrs. Park laughed “Don’t apologize, I’m not your teacher anymore”
You smiled, and bent down, embarrassed at your clumsiness, and picked up the packs.
When you stood up, Mrs. Park’s gaze was fixated on your neck, and she asked “Oh, how is he doing?”
You turned your head to her “Hmm? Who?”
She smiled knowingly “Mr. Hwang”
Your heart dropped.
“Oh...” You stepped back, clutching the pack near your chest “Hyunjin? We’re… not in touch”
“Oh?” She raised her eyebrows, as if she didn’t believe you, and you wonder why.
She knew how much you had hated each other “Aren’t you in the same university?”
“Yeah we are, but you know…we don’t get along. Never did” You mumbled.
Her face dropped; eyebrows scrunched together. Why did she look so puzzled?
“I must be mistaken then…sorry for prying but I just got confused”
“Confused about what?” You questioned.
“Well…” Her eyes flickered down “You’re wearing his necklace”
You looked down at your chest, the daisy necklace which was peeking out from under your jacket.
The one you hadn’t taken off in months ever since you found it.
It couldn’t be.
“I must be wrong” She spoke up “Probably just a coincidence”
“What…what do you mean?” You asked, looking up at her.
She could probably see how distressed you were, if the look on your face could even convey half of what you were feeling, a deep pit of anxiety and dread in your stomach.
“Well. Hyunjin has one just like that. It’s his favorite thing in the world, he once told me it was his most prized possession”
Then why…? You felt your throat lodge up, stuffed with all the things you couldn’t say “He did?”
She smiled “Yeah. You want to know the story?”
You swallowed, your brain in overdrive, and your heart squeezing in your chest. Did you really want to know? Would it make a difference? You’d spent so long trying to not think of him, to move on, to forget what it was like.
But now you were stuck, in a complete opposite situation, forced to think of the memories of him and the delicate ornament gracing your neck, one of your only belongings that hadn’t been associated with him.
You could say no. You could walk away now, and never have to think about him again, abandoning the daisy necklace that apparently was his.
Or you could listen to Mrs. Park, alighting the smallest of hope still inside you that maybe you did mean something to that boy.
Hope was such a dangerous thing.
It had never proved fruitful to you.
You stared at Mrs. Park, the weight of the ornament on your neck as heavy as the decision she’d unintentionally asked you to make.
It would be such a thin line, between wanting to know the truth, and resurfacing your pushed down feelings again.
But, Hyunjin was the love of your life, even if you weren’t his.
So you said yes.
“Sure…I would like to know”
She hummed, stepping closer, a smile on her lips “You know that he joined my classes when he was a kid right?”
You nodded, swallowing.
“He was just a little boy, and he had absolutely no confidence. Before his first show, he was so terrified he thought he would pass out. He told me that he wasn’t built for dancing, and that it wasn’t his destiny to become a good dancer. I remember laughing because he was always so dramatic”
“Well, before his first show, I got him that necklace. Kind of like an assurance, that everything was going to be okay, and that if he ever felt scared or unsure of himself, he should hold that necklace to ground himself. Obviously the show went great, I knew it would, and well, that kind of became his lucky charm. He never took it off”
“But who am I kidding? It’s such a common one, anybody could have it. Sorry for making that assumption, sweetheart. I doubt he would ever give it to anybody anyway, he loves it more than anything”
Your heart squeezed in your chest, making it hard to breathe.
“What’s wrong, Y/N? You look pale”
“Um” You cleared your throat, holding back, in numbing confusion at this revelation “I’m fine. Sorry, I just…”
You looked down at yourself, you’d accidently squeezed the pack of ramen with your tight grip and you mumbled an apology, handing her the other one.
“Thank you” She smiled “But regardless it’s a beautiful necklace. Whoever got it for you must really care about you”
You just nodded.
Feeling her words through every crevice of your broken heart.
It was what Wooyoung was talking about. It had to be.
Maybe it was wishful thinking, maybe you were on your way to be hurt again, or maybe…maybe you were meant to bump into Mrs. Park at the grocery store and she was meant to tell you the truth about the necklace.
How could you not have known it was his?
Why did he not ask for it back? He let you wear it, every single day.
All those times he’d smiled at you, touched it delicately, just because you’d been wearing it. The time he gave it to you because you’d dropped it in class in a hurry. The times he’d kept his gaze fixated on your neck as he fucked you. When he’d asked you to leave the dress unbuttoned, so he could look at it. You had never understood it…and now that you knew it was his, you were even more confused.
If it was his lucky charm…if it was his favorite thing in the world, why would he give it to you? Thinking about the possible answer to that question made you dizzy, so you focused on the task at hand. You knocked on the door to the dance studio.
Felix was here.
“Y/N!” He cried, when he spotted you, stepping closer but a pout on his face “So you do remember who I am”
“Felix…I’m sorry for cancelling the plans, I just…I was busy, and I needed to talk to you” You instantly apologized, guilt rushing through you at the look on his face.
He nodded, leaning back against the mirror “Not busy enough I see”
“Felix…I promise I’ll make it up to you. Whatever you want.”
His eyes lit up, childlike wonder “Now I’m interested. So, what do you need me for?”
“I need to ask you something”
“Oh?” He raised an eyebrow “How did you know I’d be here?”
“Um…I asked Minho”
“Well, I’m flattered that you came all the way to campus for me. How can I be of service?”
“I…um” You paused “Do you know where Hyunjin is? I know he hasn’t been staying at the dorm much and I…I really need to talk to him”
Felix’s mouth upturned in a small smirk “You’re looking for Hyunjin, huh?”
You nodded “Don’t make me regret asking you, Yongbok”
He burst into laughter, before pausing “Okay. Room 325. That’s where he usually is”
What was he doing, pushing drugs?
“Right” You said “Do you think he will be there now?”
Felix shrugged, a knowing smile on his face “You can check”
You huffed “Fine, thank you Lix”
“You owe me a drink!”
The hallways were winding, and you had never felt this lost in your own University. Maybe it was the state of your mind right now, or the fact that your head was full of the necklace, and Hyunjin, instead of directions, or how to read sign boards.
You stood in the center of the empty building, wondering how you could possibly find this room, and if you really did want to find it after all.
It was freezing, and you hugged your jacket tighter around yourself, suddenly feeling very stupid that you were wasting yet another weekend here at school.
What were you hoping to find? You weren’t ready to talk to him. You cared too much to hear what he really thought about you.
What if it was just a coincidence and he thought you were crazy obsessed with him? What if it actually meant nothing, and wasn’t a sign, but just your last grasp of knowing that your love perhaps wasn’t unrequited?
The thought of the upcoming confrontation made you shudder, and you walked down the long and empty hallway, a large part of you hoping Room 325 didn’t even exist.
Of course it did, and the familiar numbers stared at you in a large font, as if your mocking your nervousness. It was just a room. What could be so bad about it?
Hyunjin could be in it.
Your heart was racing fast, and you put a hand on your chest to calm it. It was just a boy…you could do this.
You stepped up to it, palm coming up to push it open, wishing it was locked and you wouldn’t be able to enter…but it opened.
A large creak followed, and you stepped inside.
Out of everything that you could possibly expect, this wasn’t it.
The first thing you noticed was how every window was boarded up.
Plants were growing from every possible direction, sunlight filtering in through cracks to warm up the wooden floor, as if the room hadn’t been used in decades, as if it had been built and never put to any good use.
Maybe Felix was just joking with you, but then you saw it.
The room may be empty, and Hyunjin wasn’t here…but he definitely had been earlier.
Traces of him were all across the room.
Canvases lined up the edge of the wall, cans and bottles of paint strewn next to it. Paintbrushes stuffed into a cracked yellow flower vase.
A pair of denim overalls, splattered with paint drops, hung behind the door. There was an easel set up near the window, precariously balancing a tilted canvas, the painting on it was beautiful.
Strokes of purple, and strokes of yellow.
You didn’t know what it meant. You could never understand art, but you wanted to cry.
Because Hyunjin made it.
You could recognize that much, from the ease of the small strokes, from the similarities to the glimpses of drawings you’d seen scattered across his dorm room desk.
You could recognize it, because there was a scribble of a heart, next to every corner of the painting, and only somebody like Hyunjin could have poured in so much love into a place that was so abandoned, and so broken.
It was like he had put it back together.
You could recognize it was him, because there were colors of every kind, perched up on a little table, as if he experimented with everything he could find, and you knew that’s how he worked, when he danced all his life next to you, trying out everything to know what he excelled at.
But Hyunjin didn’t know that he excelled at everything.
Plants curled across the ceiling, leaves hanging as low as your head, a burgundy stool pushed up next to the window, perfect for his height.
A pair of silver rings hung by the canvas. Rings you recognized far too well, because you’d noticed them when he’d held your hand, you’d felt them when he’d touched your hair, fixated on them as they’d adorned his fingers when they entered you.
Dozens of hair ties for his unruly hair were scattered everywhere, and Hyunjin was a precise person, but he also was a messy person.
It was the most beautiful place you’d ever stepped in, and Hyunjin had created all of it.
You stood in awe, eyes wide, taking in everything around you.
This was what he had been doing.
A scrunched up piece of paper lay by your foot, and you bent down, unfurling to see words scribbled on it in his handwriting.
‘What you like.
What you don’t like.
Your favorite work of art’
The sentence didn’t make any sense, but it rang familiar to you, and you couldn’t understand where you knew the words from.
A creak of the door made you jump, and you knew there was only one person who it could be. You stood up, a part of you wishing it was just Felix coming in, or security …but that would be wishful thinking and you knew it wasn’t either of them.
You turned around. Everything coming to a standstill at the sight.
He stood at the door, his eyes wide, in nervousness.
“Hyunjin… uh, I’m -”
You were trespassing, on his property, on his personal space, on his safe space. He would hate you if he didn’t already.
He looked around the room, and then back to you “What are you doing in here?”
It was hard to speak.
You felt like you’d forgotten words, and that you were just staring at him, intruding his personal space, without even having asked him in the first place.
Fuck. This was a bad idea.
The words were stuck in your throat.
“Y/N…?” He asked.
“I…I wanted to ask you something” You blurted. Saying something was better than standing there like this.
He was right there. The boy you loved more than anything in the world, and in this moment you loved him even more, despite all the hurt.
All you wanted to know was why he gave you the necklace, and to give it back.
Hyunjin nodded, stepping inside slowly, as if testing the waters. He was in a beautiful cream sweater, blond hair pushed behind his ears, a silver necklace around his neck.
“What did you want to ask me?” There was no animosity in his tone, unlike last time at the pub. Maybe he was just tired of you. The fleeting thought made you even more nervous, to have him be so tired of you, he couldn’t find it in himself to even be angry.
“Um...” You looked at your feet, this was not the time to be anxious. You couldn’t think about how much you loved him. You had to confront him; know why he did this “I wanted to know why you…”
“Y/N, just say it” Hyunjin cut through, your eyes snapping up to his in surprise.
He wasn’t going to give you time? He couldn’t give you two minutes out of his precious day.
You really did mean such less to him.
“Fine” You crossed your arms, anxiety now replaced by annoyance “Why the hell didn’t you tell me?”
Hyunjin’s eyebrows raised “Tell you what?”
You grabbed onto the daisy around your neck roughly, showing it to him “That this necklace was yours. Why did you let me wear it all these months? Why didn’t you ask for it back?”
His eyes widened “How did you know it’s mine?”
You scoffed. He was really making you feel like shit and he barely said anything. You regret your decision already “I bumped into Mrs. Park. And she thought that we're together? Because I was wearing your necklace”
He looked surprised “You met Mrs. Park?”
Really, that’s what he cared about?
You sighed, groaning loudly “Hyunjin. Just tell me! Why didn’t you take it back? Was it to lay some sort of claim on me? Is it some new fuckboy antic that I don’t know about? To mark what’s yours?”
Hyunjin closed his eyes “I don’t understand why you’re so worked up. It’s just a necklace”
His words dwindled the small hope you had, confirming your worst fears, that you truly were reading into things, that it wasn’t a sign, and things were how they always would be.
Despite the crushing hopes, you had come here for an answer, even if it wasn’t the one you wanted.
You couldn’t leave without knowing the truth “It’s not just that, Hyunjin. Just answer me, please”
Hyunjin took in a breath, looking up at you “Then I have to ask you something too”
“What? I asked you first. You can’t just change the subject just because you’re-”
“Why didn’t you tell me you had feelings for me back in high school?”
Your heart stopped.
He nodded “You never told me”
“You...you knew” You spoke.
Hyunjin let out a breath “How was I supposed to know?”
“That’s not an answer, Y/N. I thought you hated me”
You ran a hand through your hair. This was not real.
He didn’t know? That was a lie. Of course he knew.
“Of course, I didn’t hate you. All the time we spent together...that’s not hatred. I don’t understand, how could you not know?”
Hyunjin looked tired, and confused, but nobody could be as confused as you right now “I don’t just assume people have feelings for me, Y/N. Especially you. You never said anything”
“I kissed you Hyunjin”
“Because I asked you to”
You stepped back, trying to wrap your head around this “Why did you then?”
How could he not know? How could he make you feel like absolute shit, breaking your heart after doing all the kind things he did and then pretend that he didn’t know?
Everybody knew. Your feelings for Hyunjin back then were clear as day. It was so obvious. You felt yourself getting antsy, your anxiety rising.
He was staring at you as if you were talking crazy, and it angered you. He couldn’t be serious.
“Why did you ask me to kiss you back then Hyunjin?” You said “It’s because you knew I had feelings for you and because I was easy, because it was funny, right? Because no matter what I do I could never be Seojun so what’s the point right?”
God, you sounded so petty, so childish, so immature, but everything you wanted to know since the day he first broke your heart was now bubbling out.
Hyunjin blinked “Seojun? What does she have to do with any of this?”
Your head hurt, at his obliviousness, at his stupidity, boys really were fucking dumb, and now he was making you feel dumb in question “She has everything to do with this. You...I saw you two. After the show. You wanna know why I never told you I had feelings for you Hyunjin? Because when I was going to, you were too busy sucking face with Park Seojun”
“You saw us?”
That’s all he had to say?
He could not be serious.
“Was I not supposed to? Was that not another act you put on, to show me how much you didn’t give a fuck about me? ‘Y/N would be crazy if she had feelings for me, nothing can ever happen between us’ Because no matter what, I’m always going to be the annoying brat you can’t shake off your shoulder?”
Hyunjin’s eyes widened in recognition of his own words being spoken back to him, words he had rarely ever thought of, memories of that school night flashing through his mind.
He saw the frustration in you, your eyes glossed over, entire being just filled with absolute anger towards him, justifiably so.
Everything was beginning to make sense now, and all the memories flooding through him made his head hurt.
All the moments he’d spent with you leading up to the dance, how your entire behavior towards him had changed in a matter of weeks, and he just thought it was because you were trying your best to get along with him. You had actually liked him in high school. It was absolutely fucking crazy, but you had actually liked him.
You were right. How could he not have known? How could he be so fucking dumb to not realize that all your acts of kindness, albeit shielded in a guise of indifference and annoyance, actually had meant something?
Perhaps even if Hyunjin had realized that you did feel something for him apart from hatred, he still wouldn’t have understood it.
The kiss in the dressing room came back to him. How you’d been so unwilling to kiss him at first, and he just thought it was because you couldn’t stand him, but it was because you actually liked him? Girls were confusing as fuck, and maybe it wasn’t all Hyunjin’s fault for having misread the signs.
But you had seen him kiss Seojun, the girl who he had briefly dated in high school, because she was the first girl who told him how much she liked him and Hyunjin would have been stupid to say not to that.
But you had seen that, and you had heard him talk to her, about you.
Hyunjin couldn’t even imagine how much you would despise him for that, and he wish he had just a bit more emotional intelligence, or even common sense, back then to have understood what was going on.
He remembered the way you’d looked at him in the dressing room, while you’d stitched up the hand he’d cut so foolishly before the show, and his insides had stirred at your kindness.
He didn’t know what it meant then.
He remembered the way you’d kissed him on stage, pouring your everything to it, and all he thought in the moment was that you were the most amazing and realistic performer he knew.
He didn’t know what it meant then.
It was so obvious, but he knew nothing. He never thought someone like you, could genuinely feel something for someone like him. Wasn’t it just like Stockholm Syndrome, Hyunjin had thought, when it had surprised him how much he’d liked kissing you?
Enough time in the proximity of someone you hate, even an enemy, could make you develop feelings of fondness towards them.
Hyunjin remembered thinking that, to justify the way he’d left the dressing room feeling a tinge of giddiness in his stomach.
God, he really was fucking stupid.
“Y/N…I understand why you’re upset”
“No, you don’t Hyunjin” You replied flatly, trying your best to not yell at the boy for how much he’d affected you, how much he’d influenced the rest of your life, how much his rejection had made you feel, to the point you didn’t even want to like anybody ever again.
It was so simple for him, but not for you.
He frustrated you so much “Because you have no idea what it feels like Hyunjin! You have no idea what I felt for you back then. And it’s funny because you still have no idea! No idea what I feel for you even now. Even after all the shit you put me through”
Hyunjin’s eyes went wide, as he saw the tears well up in your eyes “Y/N please. Just listen to me”
“I didn’t know you liked me back then Y/N. I swear to god, I’m not lying. I didn’t do all of that to make you upset, or because it’s funny, or to put on an act. I really did not know”
You nodded “If you knew, would it have made a difference?”
Hyunjin was silent. Would it have made a difference?
His silence and hesitation, even if for a second, was enough to answer your question, crushing the remains of your heart to pieces.
“I get it” You replied, grabbing your bag off the table, tears sliding down your cheek and you could already taste them on your lips “Just do me a favor, stop sugarcoating it, and say it. Even if you knew I liked you, it wouldn’t have made a difference because I can never be that girl for you”
Hyunjin felt panic rise up. You were going to leave. You were going to genuinely hate him forever.
The crippling fear of having you walk away from him had him step forward, words rushed in urgency “Y/N, just listen to me”
“What more is there to say?” You asked, defeat evident in your voice, like you had given up on this already. He could see how drained you were, how tired of him, and how frustrated by this. You felt so insignificant in his life.
“You’re right” He said, taking another step forward “Honestly, I don't know if it would have made a difference, because I don’t know what I felt for you. I was ...I was so confused Y/N. Here I was paired up with a girl who only used to get on my nerves all these years and then ...we were actually getting along. I didn’t know what to feel.”
You focused your eyes on his throat, not having the willpower to look him in the eye, the way his Adam’s apple bobbed as he spoke “I’d never been in love, or much less had a proper crush on anybody. I just knew that being around you was easier than I ever thought it could have been”
You nodded, listening to him, your eyes falling to the blurry and unfocused floor.
“Y/N, please don’t cry…” He spoke softly.
“I’m...I’m fine” You sniffled. You hated that you were crying. You felt mortified all over again. What could be worse than the boy you loved so kindly explaining to you that he didn’t feel the same way for you?
You wiped your cheeks with the back of your hand “I don’t even know why we're having this conversation...or what the point of this is Hyunjin, because I’m always going in circles. Because I’m always heartbroken”
Admitting that he broke your heart out loud to him felt freeing. He should know.
“We are not going in circles”
You let out a chuckle, looking up at him, the lump in your throat thickening “Then what is this, Hyunjin?”
Hyunjin stared at you, at the tears in your eyes, and he knew that if you walked out now, there was no way things could be okay between again.
He was scared.
He had never felt so scared. Han Jisung had told him to get his shit together, and it was time. He would have liked to have done this better, when things were in his control, but if he didn’t tell you now, he would never be able to.
He sighed, running a hand through his hair, taking another step closer to you “All right. Y/N. You want to know why I never told you the daisy necklace was mine? Why I let you wear it around your neck for months, even though it’s the most special thing to me ever?”
“Because I’m in love with you”
You looked up at him, gut twisting.
“I’m in love with you, Y/N” He said, again, your heart jumping in your chest, words you never could even dream of hearing “Because I never thought I could feel this way this much for one person. Until now. Until you”
“No Y/N. You’re gonna listen to me” He spoke, his words definite “We didn’t talk about this back then, but I’m not gonna make the same mistake again. I was a stupid high school kid, I didn’t know what feelings were, but I know now that what I feel for you, its incomparable to any feeling in the world”
He took a step closer.
“I thought dancing was the happiest I could ever feel, the absolute epitome of human emotion that nothing else could compare to... until you”
“Hyunjin stop” It was too good to be true.
“You don’t even know what you’re saying…” You mumbled.
Hyunjin laughed “Yeah I do. For the first time I do. I’m not letting anybody tell me otherwise, I’ve done that far too much”
“You don’t need to say all this to make me feel better or because you pity me” You sighed, because it was too unreal. After all this time, after so much pining, he was just telling you the only thing you wanted to hear?
Things were so hard, but they weren’t this easy either.
“I’m not saying this for your sake” He said.
You tilted your head at him, confused “Then why are you saying it?”
“Because I need to tell somebody. Because I’ve been feeling this way for far too long, and now I can finally put it in words. You’re just the person that happens to be the closest”
Hyunjin heard you laugh at that, a sight he hadn’t seen in ages.
“Right” You nodded “How convenient for you”
“Why don’t you believe me?”
You breathed, trying to wrap your head around everything “Why did you end things with me then? Why did you say all that stuff to me at the lake, about it being a mistake?”
“Because I thought you hated me, Y/N. Everybody...everything around me made it impossible for me to believe anything other than that”
“Then you’ve been talking to the wrong people” You said, looking up at him, the intensity of his words still not having sunk in yet.
He smiled, eyes crinkling, like a weight was lifted off his shoulders “You have no idea how long I’ve been wanting to hear that”
“Really?” You asked, and Hyunjin’s heart bloomed at how genuine your question was. You looked so confused, as if you didn’t believe him, as if his confession fell on deaf ears because you’d spent so long heartbroken over him. He hated that. He hated that you couldn’t even believe it, truly, and he could see how hard you were trying to.
How much must he have hurt you, for you to not even comprehend the weight and truth of his words?
It felt like you thought his confession was just to ease your pain, and not actually his own at having kept this to himself.
The tears on your face were so fresh, it hurt him.
He finally reached you, fingers grazing your face to make you look at him “Y/N?”
It was far too reminiscent of the night at the club, when he’d pushed you away, and left you there.
“I know that you don’t believe me, but you know what?”
“I’m going to do everything I can to make sure you know now. I’m going to spend every second reminding you that, because you deserve to know”
Your eyes were glossed over as you stared at him, it all felt like a dream.
“I’m sorry” He finally said “I’m so sorry for everything. From high school…to now. I wish you could be in my head right now, so you could feel how genuinely sorry I am”
You were going to cry again.
That apology meant everything to you.
“God, I feel so stupid for crying” You mumbled.
“Don’t apologize. If you knew how much I’ve cried in the past month, you’d laugh at me”
You did laugh, bringing a smile to his face, his cheeks reddening.
“See…you’re already laughing”
You probably had a dumb smile on your face, heart felt so full that you couldn’t even believe this was happening. Hyunjin had apologized to you.
Looking up at him like this, so close, after you’d dreamt of it for so long, made your insides stir uncomfortably.
“So…” You turned around, trying to hide your shaky tone, gesturing to the room “This is where you’ve been the past month? Hiding?”
“Maybe” He answered “I wanted some time away, from everything, needed to clear my head, to think, focus on what I truly care about”
Your fingers grazed the textured canvas “All of these are beautiful Hyunjin”
“They’re all works in progress. Not even close to finished”
You smiled at him “That's not a bad thing. Is there a pattern to these?”
Hyunjin stepped up, standing behind you “What do you think it is?”
“I don’t know…I’m not an artist, it all seems pretty random to me”
Hyunjin laughed “Well, I thought it was pretty random too when you asked me for it”
You turned to him “Asked you for it? I don’t understand”
Hyunjin tilted his head, settling on the high stool behind you “Do you remember Chan’s party?”
How could you ever forget that party?
“You said you had to ask me something important, and I thought you were going to ask to be on top?”
You flushed at the memory, and of your earlier comfort with him “Your point is?”
“But you ended up asking me something else entirely. Do you remember that?”
The memory came rushing back to you, along with the words scribbled on the crumpled piece of paper from before, in Hyunjin’s handwriting.
Those were your words.
“I asked you to show me your favorite art in the world…” You said.
“You did” Hyunjin said softly “You asked me to show you what I like, what I don’t. Well, I couldn’t possibly put all of that into words, it would be too hard to explain and to tell you, so…I thought I could maybe just show you instead”
You turned to look at him, your eyes wide.
Words you had spoken to him in drunken comfort on a balcony, that he’d actually listened to and remembered.
He’d spent hours of his life working on this.
To your drunken, absurd requests spoken into thin air.
Hyunjin was red, his cheeks the same pink as his lips, at feeling so exposed about what he’d done, just for you.
A part of him felt like laughing, saying that he was joking, because how lovesick was he to have done something so big for something you probably didn’t even remember asking him for?
The other part of him told him to stand his ground, to process your reaction, because maybe he was crazy in love with you, and maybe now he just could not give a shit what you or anybody thought about it, because it was true.
He loved you. Even if he hadn’t shown it well till now.
This was just one of the ways he knew how to tell you that.
You stared at the boy, blushing at the admittance. Nobody had ever done something like this for you, and the fact that he…had put so much thought and love into this, for you, made you lightheaded.
“You did all of this…for me?” You asked, staring at the beautiful paintings that you still didn’t understand, but you’re sure he would tell you later.
You turned around again, looking at the boy perched on the high stool, a soft smile on his beautiful face as he looked at you.
“You’re…serious?” You breathed.
He was so close to you, you would only have to take a single step and he would be mere inches away. The filtered sunlight coming in through the window caught in his light blonde hair, lighting it up, like sparkles. The white sweater he was in hugged him so well, the v-neckline dipping down, the sun lighting up his collarbones, and the simple beaded necklace he had on.
His hair was tucked behind his ear, pushed away from his bare fare, revealing the simple silver piercing in his ears, and you were sure he had never looked so beautiful before as he did now.
You were sure you had never seen such a pretty sight.
It was as if Hyunjin knew what you were thinking, and he wordlessly leaned forward, his hand coming around the small of your back, so he could pull you closer, tenderly.
He parted his thighs just slightly, so there could be space for you to stand between his legs, and you were now so close to him, you could feel his breath on your lips.
His touch was light, enough that you could move away if you were uncomfortable.
“Y/N…” He spoke first, looking up at you with glimmering eyes, eyebrows raised slightly, his face painting a picture of pure innocence and adoration.
His lips were pursed, pink, plush and inviting.
“Yeah?” You asked, not nearly enough air in your lungs at the closeness to him.
Hyunjin’s gaze was soft, mouth jutted in a natural pout “Do you still hate me?”
You don’t even remember thinking in that second.
All you remember is grabbing his face in your hands, palms on his soft cheeks so you could lean in and press your lips to his.
Hyunjin reacted just as fast, his hand instantly looping around your waist, pulling you even closer into him and kissing you back.
He could taste your tears on his lips, and his chest hurt at having been the reason for them. He kissed you softly, gripping tightly to hold you close and your hands moved from his face to his shoulders, lightly grazing the exposed skin, nails digging in, as if to embed this moment in your memory.
His mouth moved so slowly and so effortlessly against yours, as if he wanted to take his sweet time, and you sighed softly, content in the feeling that you had missed more than anything in the world.
You pulled back, just slightly, lips hovering over his still, to catch your breath, and to say what you’d been meaning to.
Your voice came out raspy, the lack of air and your racing heart “I don’t hate you Hyunjin. I don’t think I’ve hated you...in a truly long time”
Hyunjin smiled at that, still desperate to continue the kiss, but he needed to hear this first “So…you can just about tolerate me then?” He asked, tilting his head.
You laughed, leaning in to peck his lips again, and you looked at him, hoping he could hear the sincerity of your next words “I love you”
Hyunjin’s eyes widened at the words, something he knew now, but something he never thought he could hear, and the sight was so pure that you just about died inside.
“Are you sure?” He murmured, his words soft like an embrace.
You smiled, leaning in, your nose grazing his, so your words would be spoken straight to his mouth, and to his heart “I’ve loved you half my life, Hyunjin”
His heart skipped a beat, and you kissed him at that second, tasting his smile. Your grip on him got stronger, hand slipping into his hair, nails grazing his scalp and a soft moan escaped him. You deepened the kiss, feeling hot in the moment, and he hummed contentedly, but there was so much he wanted to do, to say.
He pulled back again, drawing in a sharp breath “Y/N…wait”
“What…” You had a pout on your face, upset that he pulled away so quick. Your lips were swollen already, eyes half lidded, pupils dilated as you looked at him, making it harder for him to pull away.
Hyunjin’s gaze dropped down, his chest heaving, breathing heavily as his hands gripped you tightly, trying to not give in to what he wanted “Wait please”
It would be so easy to get carried away. He wanted you so badly. It would be the easiest thing ever, to kiss you, to pick you up and sit you on his lap, to show you how much he missed you.
The thought of all the things he wanted to do to you made his pants tighten and he groaned “Give me a second”
“Okay” You nodded, voice fond, hands running up his chest. He was holding himself back.
“It’s so tempting” He said, voice hoarse and husky, biting down on his plump bottom lip “It’s so tempting to do what I want to right now, to you”
“But I need to do things right this time” He said, and then looked back up at you, his gaze piercing yours “You…you mean everything to me, and I hurt you”
“I did” He said, firmly and you could hear the frantic rhythm of his heartbeat “I know that I just want to pick up where we left off, because that’s so easy, but I’m not just going to do the easy thing now. I’ve been doing that this whole time and look where it got me”
“Then what are you going to do?” You asked softly. He was so endearing to you, even now, as he struggled to not kiss you.
“I’m going to make it up to you” He spoke, all the while his fingers lingered at your waist, your sweater slightly pushed up so he could feel your bare skin against his.
“I’m going to have you trust me again” He said, eyes still lingering on the dried tears, while his fingers moved up under your top “I’m going to make sure you know that I never will hurt you like this again, and that’s why we need to stop…what we’re doing right now. Even if it is so tempting”
You laughed, a giddy feeling in your chest, and he raised his eyebrows.
“Why are you laughing?” He pouted, brows furrowed.
“I already stopped Hyun, you’re the one who is feeling me up right now”
His hands moved back from you instantly, and he had a look of surprise and embarrassment on his face, turning red all over again.
“Sorry” He mumbled, so dramatic “You just have no idea how breathtaking you are”
You traced your finger against his jaw, making him look back at you “That’s funny coming from you. You know that you look like a dream?”
Hyunjin smiled at your words, his heart feeling full “Well I’m not a dream Y/N...I’m right here”
You ran a hand through his hair, brushing it out of his face so you could look at his beautiful face “Yeah I know”
“And this time... I’m not going anywhere”
⇐ masterlist ⇒
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